FRIDAYI worked from home on Friday and it was splendid. I called in for my meeting and checked in a few times throughout the day to make sure that nothing was being requested from me, but otherwise I was able to enjoy some time with our company. Sadly, Aunt P was down and out with a stomach bug, but our other guest and Teh German decided to run my errands with me.
I needed to go to Michael's to pick up my frame, the dry cleaner, Goodwill, and the grocery store. Lesson: Do not take people with you on your errands if you want to stay on task. After Michael's, it was suggested that we swing by the mall (reminder: it's Christmas Eve Eve) to look for a South Carolina flag at Palmetto Moon (a local "classy, Southern" themed store that sells everything Yeti you could possibly want, as well as USC, Clemson, and various other southern themed gear). Times of the year I do NOT go to the mall: Black Friday, anything within 1 week of Christmas. To say I was not pleased is an understatement, but I was trying to be nice, so I just restrained my aggravation and kept my comments to myself. There were so many people that I was going out of my mind and then there was a deliberation over of the flag being too big and I was just ready to go and I didn't care that the flag in question was $25 (I wish I was kidding) and did I mention there were approximately 1 million people in the store? Ugh.
Items were bought and we finally left the mall, to my relief. My head had started to hurt before we'd left Michael's and it was getting worse and worse as the day went on. We swung by Goodwill and dropped off 2 bags of clothes (ya know, to make space for all the stuff I've been buying that I said I wouldn't) and some picture frames I'd purged. After Goodwill, I dropped off my peacoat and MOH that needed to be dry cleaned. Finally, we finished up the adventure with a Publix trip.
When we went home, I did a bit of work, then headed to Roux's house for a doggy play date. After about an hour, I couldn't handle the headache anymore. I headed home and went straight upstairs and took a nap. Originally, we had planned on going to Willie Jewell's for dinner, then to the Stingrays game. Between my headache and Aunt P's sickness, adventures were not to be had. Teh German woke me around 5:30 to ask if I wanted to go to dinner/the game and I said I'd prefer not.
We did still order Willie Jewell's, which Teh German went and picked up for us. Aunt P didn't eat, but the rest of us did. Teh German bought the streaming ticket and after some difficulties, we got the game streaming on my laptop. I did puzzles and listened to the game while Teh German and our other German guest watched the game. We lost, horribly, so I was kinda glad we didn't waste the money on the tickets.
|The pillow king!|
After the game was over, we headed to bed since Saturday was Panther's game day!
SATURDAYSaturday morning, Teh German and I woke up at 0645 to get up and get ready and be out of the house by 0730. We were meeting Teh Running Bestie in Charlotte for the Panthers vs Falcons game. The drive wasn't difficult and we met Teh Running Bestie at the I-485 train station so we didn't have to worry about parking and post-game traffic.
Once she arrived, she gave us our Christmas gift (a personalized ornament for our tree with our family photo in front of the house), and we gathered up all our layers and jumped on the train. We rode to UPtown (as Charlotte calls their downtown area, ugh) and started the search for food. Having never been to a Panthers game, I wasn't aware that 1145 was too late to arrive uptown to find noms. Every place we went to (per Yelp suggestions) was completely packed. We finally ended up at Mellow Mushroom, where I placed a take-away order for Teh German and I to share. Teh Running Bestie had eaten a big breakfast with Teh MD-Teenage Roomie, so she wasn't hungry. The wait was about 30 minutes. While we waited, Teh German ordered a beer for himself and a sweet tea for me, because he loves me. Teh German noticed that the tables inside were clearing out, so he asked the hostess if we could steal an inside table while we ate our food, which came up right as the hostess sat us at our table.
After we scarfed down a calzone, we
|YAY! Carolina Panthers! Live!|
|It was a gorgeous day|
|Disgruntled faces for such a crappy game.|
It was a sad time when we got to the end of the line and we had to part ways with Teh Running Bestie. After about an hour on the road, we realized that we need to find food before 1- we ran out of options, 2- everything closed. It was already around 7:30, so most places were already closed. We got "lucky" and found an open Ruby Tuesday. I say "lucky" because while the food looked appealing, the food didn't taste as good as it looked and it was super disappointing.
After we finished, we got back on the road to finish the trip home. Our German guests had made dinner for themselves, so it was ok that we didn't get home until 9:30. When we got home, I let Phil and Meri have their presents from their other Momma/Teh Running Bestie. Phil got way more joy from the gifts than Meri did, oddly enough. He played for several minutes, which is plural minutes longer than he usually squeaks toys.
"Santa" had some presents to wrap for Teh German and I. While "Santa" was wrapping, Aunt P kept her company. There were only about 5 things that needed to be wrapped, so it didn't take long. After presents were wrapped, it was downtime. While the Germans enjoyed their iPads, I finished up the final Traveling Pants book, which caused me to bawl my eyes out and send anguished texts to Teh Sister. After Teh German came to bed, it was time to sleep while we waited on Santa to arrive.
SUNDAYAt some point during the middle of the night, I woke up and Phil was standing at the bedroom door. I used my phone to illuminate the room and noticed a pile of probable vomit in front of the dresser. I flopped back onto my pillow and told myself that I'd get up at doggy breakfast time and feed the beasts and then clean up the pile. I was giving myself a pass since it was Christmas.
0600 didn't take long to arrive and both Meri and Phil were ready for breakfast asap. I released the hounds and we all went downstairs to have breakfast. While Phil and Meri ate breakfast, I prepared myself to clean up vomit and grabbed a cloth. After Phil and Meri came back inside, we all headed back upstairs to the bedroom where a Christmas miracle happened. What I thought was a pile of vomit was actually a new toy I hadn't recognized.
Relieved, I crawled back into bed and snuggled with Teh German until I couldn't handle it anymore and woke him up since it was Christmas! We eventually got up and started making breakfast with the German company. It was a very German-American breakfast. Bread, cheese, sliced meat, eggs, and sausage. Breakfast was actually cooked by Teh German while I prepped dinner.
Our company had requested pulled pork for Christmas dinner, which was perfect since I had a frozen pork butt on standby. I found a pulled pork rub recipe from the Googly where I had all the called for ingredients on hand, which was most important since nothing was open. As I finished getting it all into the crockpot, breakfast was finished.
|It's sooooo prettayyyy|
|frühstück = breakfast|
After breakfast, I headed back into the kitchen to make a chocolate pie, which the Germans had requested for dessert. I knew that it would take a while for the mix to cook, so I was glad to have started it early since we had a Skype date with Teh German's family in Germany at 11. The pie was ready to be poured into the crust at 1058, right in time. Of course, after I'd poured the mix into the crust and bowls, I realized I had forgotten the vanilla extract. Ugh. After stirring it in, I made it to the Skype date, a few minutes late. We chatted with family in Germany, Teh German showed Opa Baloo, and we made a big announcement. 30 minutes later, our Skype date was over and we opened our few presents that
I had scheduled a Skype date with Teh Family for noon:30, but no one ever showed up. I had planned to share the big announcement with my family. To say my feelings were hurt is probably an understatement. I was completely crushed. Teh German actually messaged Teh Dad to ask if he was getting on Skype and he informed Teh German that they had just left church and it would be another 20 minutes. Neither Teh Sister, nor Teh Mom, were responding to my text messages.
Eventually, Teh Dad and Teh Stepmom met us on Skype. We waited for about 30 minutes for Teh Sister to call in and Teh Dad had texted her and she said they were opening presents. Having run out of small talk, we finally made our announcement to just Teh Dad and Teh Stepmom. We got off Skype a few minutes later and I was exhausted and disappointed. I decided to lay down for a nap to hopefully negate the bad feelings (spoiler alert: didn't work).
Over an hour later, I woke up to my Kindle making a racket. When I came to, I had missed a Skype call from Teh Sister and all the feelings came back and I was disappointed all over again. Not long after, Teh German came up to ask me if it was time to start getting dinner ready. We had plans to go over to Roux's house at 5:30 and apparently dinner before dessert was Teh German's plan. Oops.
I got up at 4 and started prepping sweet potatoes and green beans for dinner. While the veggies were cooking, I started pulling the pork apart. Uhhh, that seems like it should be an easy job, but it is not. I broke a sweat pulling pork apart with 2 forks. Aunt P mashed the sweet potatoes while I took a break to add the butter and cinnamon and sugar. Then it was back to pulling pork. Finally, I was done and it was time to eat!
I think I decided that pulled pork is our new Christmas dinner tradition. I like it way more than turkey or ham and it makes for excellent leftovers. After dinner received cheers from everyone at the table, we finished eating. After cleaning up the kitchen for the most part, we headed to Roux's house for dessert and Christmas socializing. We left Phil and Meri at home because there were too many people to add 2 more dogs to the mix. We socialized with the neighbors for a few hours.
Eventually, we headed home to check on the beasts since we had left Meri out of her crate and who knew what she'd get into. We got home to a untarnished house (another Christmas miracle)! We settled down for the night. While Aunt P watched her shows in her room, Teh German and our other guest were downstairs enjoying their iPads. I was upstairs in the bed, reading and doing puzzles. I called Teh Running Bestie to lament about the day and my hurt feelings. Then I texted Teh WJL about our announcement.
MONDAYToday was the observed holiday for Christmas so I didn't work. Instead, we slept in (for as long as Meri would let me, and then I woke Teh German up because I was bored) and played tourist. I got up and had Willie Jewell's leftovers for breakfast (a decision I would come to regret). While the Germans had their coffee and breakfast, I caught up on social media and printed out some coupons.
Aunt P's goal while she was in Charleston was to buy some Oofos flip flops like mine (she had tried mine on while we were in Germany) since they are the best flippy floppies ever. After breakfast, we got ready to face the public and headed to town. We went to Fleet Feet in Mount Pleasant and grabbed their only pair that fit her. We put another pair on hold at their other store in the area. After flip flops, we headed to Metto for coffee treats, then to Angel Oak since the Germans hadn't seen it yet. Sadly, it was raining and we were unprepared, so we didn't really get to enjoy the tree, but they got to see it, so I'm calling it a success. After Angel Oak, we headed to the Fleet Feet in Summerville to pick up the other pair of flip flops.
|Presents for me from Aunt P!|
|Angel Oak selfie!|
Since I won the Fleet Feet gift certificate at the run Teh German and I attended in December, I picked up a few new pairs of socks that were on sale and a new Under Armor "Run CHS" hoodie that was on sale for $35! Scoooooore. I also chatted with the cashier about the Sweet Tea half marathon and getting back on the running train. After we had left the tree, we had decided to spend the rest of the evening relaxing. After Fleet Feet, we made a quick pit stop at the grocery store for some bbq sauce, then we headed home.
After some technical difficulties and ineffective tech troubleshooting, we were able to watch Zootopia (or Zoomania) in German with English subtitles. This is part of my quest to learn German and I was actually catching differences in what they were saying in German vs what the English subtitles said. Woot!
After the movie, I started working on this post while the Germans watch Dumb and Dumber 2. When I noticed that someone on our neighborhood page was selling an 8 set of dishes, I jumped on the opportunity since we have 2 different sets of 4, which I'm not a huge fan of. I took a few breaks during the writing of this post to pick up our new set of dining ware and to eat dinner, which Teh German very kindly heated up.
After dinner, I helped Aunt P set up a new blog (my specialty) for her volunteer efforts in Sri Lanka. Post blog setup, I finally finished this post and hit publish. AND it was still Monday review day! HA! #christmasmiracle