Macrander Late Thanksgiving Poem

It's that time of year when plump, ready turkeys start to disappear, When the Macrander family near and far,

Start gassing up the commuter car.

For Emily, Thanksgiving day was held in Sugar Land,

Though why Aggie always gets the first invite, I don't quite understand.

Aggie at the Underwood Thanksgiving.

Aggie followed around cooks and sat in the sun all day long,

Because the bond between her and Kaitlyn's cat was never strong.

Sarah flew from Denver to be with the rest of the clan,

And told the family about her new boyfriend, Steve, not Stan.

Sarah and Todd by Todd and Nick's apartment.

In Baton Rouge, Todd and Nick were kind enough to host the whole group,

Though in such close quarters, Dad struggled to find a private place to...stoop.

We always cherish the moment we get to watch Dad cook,

Because we know these secrets are found in no book.


After Thanksgiving, Jarrod and Emily did arrive,

But only to hop in the car and head to New Orleans - another drive.

On the hunt for a restroom, we went into the mall,

And found a tree to take our Christmas photo by, oh so tall.

Merry Christmas from Nick, Todd, Sarah, Emily and Jarrod.

As with custom with every trip,

Each Macrander goes to Todd to get a clip.

Todd cuts Jarrod's hair.

After several days of family fun,

And starting to feel like we each weighed a ton,

We gathered around the apartment stairwell,

While Todd ran to apply some last minute hair gel,

And took this lovely family photo.

Macrander family looking spiff.

Water under the sink

Ever wake up with an "it's going to rain today" headache? That was me this morning. I've been trying out this new alarm SpinMe, which requires that I get out of bed and spin around twice to make it stop making noise. It's meant for people who have trouble getting up in the morning. Like me.

Anyway,  so I was off to a good start. I was up so early, in fact, that I had time to clean up the kitchen a  bit before GoTime.

So I went under my sink to grab a scrubby sponge to clean off the stove. And discovered the bin that I store my cleaners in was filled with brown water. Yep. The same bin that was filled with brown water last week when I called Ye Old Landlord.

And that's the same sink that she texted me about last week and said was an "easy-peasy" fix when the plumber came out.

Not so easy peasy. It's still leaking. And now, the bucket overfloweth and I have a big mess.

So, I went from zero to 60 mad.

And J chose this time, this early morning, pissed off time to say,

"This is why I don't want to buy an old house."

Because there's too much junk in my trunk

I am a frugal (read: cheap) person. So cheap that I sometimes skip over items at the Goodwill because I deem them to pricey.

Anyone who knows me well knows that I have been known to spot a furniture item in or near the trashcan, remove it, and place it in my home.

A favorite example is the wooden bookshelf I picked out of a dumpster in college. The previous owners for some unknown reason had thrown eggs at the poor bookshelf and the left it in the summer heat. I felt a deep, strange pain for the piece of furniture. So, I hauled it up to my apartment, Clorox wiped it all down and now, five years later, it sits in my living room.

Furniture has soul. People buy furniture to make life better. If it’s good quality it’s passed down. My sister, Sarah, has a trunk from the early days of mom and dad’s marriage that she uses as a coffee table. I think I hold on to furniture because I see stories within it.

I think it all started when I was just a young girl and Mom would take me thrifting. Back in those days, the Goodwill had an awesome selection of furniture. If feel like you don’t see as much these days. I remember looking at this radically vibrant upholstered couch and thinking, ‘wow, someday when I’m a grown up I want to decorate my house in this cool stuff.’ I thought that would be the dream.

All of this is to say, I occasionally am a hoarder. I work hard to remind myself that things are just things, but I really struggle here. When I moved into my most recent apartment I went down a whole room. Well, more than that if you count the loss of overall square footage and closet space.

I’d like to think that I jigsawed everything into my apartment nicely. I will admit, however, that the day I moved I sat crying in my new home in a red vinyl wheeled chair that I’d pulled out of the dumpster at my old apartment as Jarrod tried to convince me that it “just won’t fit.”

(I tell you what, I can’t wait till the day I get to tell him that his 8 foot stuffed black bear “just won’t fit.”)

(For the record, that chair has since been described as the best part of my apartment. Thank you very much.)

The lesson that is working on my heart right now in the early days of 2014 is that just because something is cheap/free/a great deal/antique/will otherwise fill a landfill, doesn’t mean I need it in my home.

As a former poor college kid that’s still convinced that Santa Clause will come along one day and reclaim my adulthood, I’m finding it difficult to really take to heart that being an adult means sometimes leaving that really expensive Shark vacuum cleaner my neighbor left out for another dumpster diver.

So, I was really proud of myself this morning as I left for work and saw that a neighbor had put a very cute shelf out by the dumpster in the universal free-stuff-here spot. After I did a mental scan of my apartment, I realized I have no more space. And I walked on.

Here’s something that my friend Chelsea understands in a way that I hope to someday: If I don’t fill my home with garbage, I can be very intentional about my purchases and decorate with quality items that I will want to have in my home for years to come.

I’m still getting there. But working on it.

First lazy Saturday of 2014

Ah. I'm back home. Sitting here with mountains of laundry and bills I'm to frightened to open. Home is where the peace is, right?

It is nice to be home, but, you see, I didn't realize-no, I didn't want to realize-that over the last two months as family came and went, I never really cleaned my home. You know about those hiding spots? The one you shove stuff in when company is coming over in five minutes? I started the cleaning process this week and my home has exploded. That's what I get for surface cleaning for two months, right?

It seems like the last two months went by in a blur. I was with the Underwood's for Thanksgiving. Then Jarrod came in town for his graduation at the beginning of December. Then Mom was in Houston for a day. Then she left. Then she and Dad were in town for a day. Then they left for Christmas in Baton Rouge. I went to Christmas in Sugar Land with the Underwoods. Then it was off to Alabama for a week. Then I came home. Todd and Nick came in town for about a day and a half for to celebrate the new year. Then they left. Then Gonzalo came by with his crazy dog. Then Jarrod came by with my crazy dog. Then it was 10 p.m. on the night before I had to go back to work!

I'm glad Todd and Nick came in town. They got to hang out with Todd's friend Angie from high school. Jarrod and I went to a couple friends' home to celebrate the new year and we played rummy. I've never played before, though I think I got the hang of it.

The next day, Jan. 1, Todd, Nick, Angie and I went to Ikea. Yep, that's right. Todd and his lover come in town to visit me and all they want to do is go to the Ikea. Nick helped me assemble a Target shelf for my new mixer. So thank you very much for that. Anyway, we had a fruitful visit to the land of Ikea. Let's see if I can remember what they got: a lamp with a crinkly paper shade, a bathroom rug, some candles, some picture frames...all for less than $100! Bargain.

While at Ikea we came across these adorable cultural stuffed dolls. Todd and Nick posed for a "family portrait."

Happy New Year, family. Many adventures to come in 2014.

Now get to cleaning your houses your nasty hoes. I know your home is as messy as mine.