Monday, December 29, 2008

Only 361 days to go

I'll write about the holiday break later, but for now let's just say that I feel the same way about Christmas as I did when I was one year old.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Sugar-fueled ramblings

HELLO, INTERNET! I had almost forgotten that I have a blog. It suddenly occurred to me yesterday, hey, wasn't it a year ago that I started this thing? Turns out it was a year ago on December 3. I missed my blogiversary! Alas.

But whatever! Because I am going home tomorrow for CHRISTMAS. I am like a kid on the last day of school before the holiday break, hopped up on sugar (have I mentioned the number of treats that appear in the office around the holidays?) and accomplishing nothing. Except making list of things to pack and to do before I leave. So far it looks like this:

  • Gifts
  • Poinsetta (lest it die while I am away)
  • Messiah score (I'm singing with the choir on Sunday, and I've been brushing up on my choruses. BRING IT ON, George Frideric!)
  • Pillow
  • iPod loaded with Christmas music
  • DVDs (White Christmas; Love Actually; The Family Stone)
  • Books (at least three)
  • Toothpaste (I have developed a habit of forgetting to pack toothpaste on recent trips.)
  • Laundry
  • Camera charger
I recognize the omissions in this list (like, you know, clothes), but these are the important, most-likely-to-be-forgotten things.

To Do
  • Pack
  • Load car
  • Figure out which laundry to take home
  • Wash dishes
  • Clean smelly stuff out of fridge
  • Take out trash
  • Clean spilled dirt out of car (The poinsetta fell over in transit from the store.)
As you can see, I have a lot to do tonight. But I shall press onward, because I am going HOME tomorrow, and CHRISTMAS is a'comin'. And I'm ready.

Monday, December 8, 2008


I have a problem with follow-through.

This is nothing new. When we were kids, G and I and three other kids in our neighborhood started a neighborhood newspaper. We never actually wrote or published anything, but we spent a great deal of time arranging our "office" in Jenna's playhouse.

In fifth grade, three of my friends and I started a babysitters' club. We had several sugar-fueled meetings. Never did any babysitting, though (not as part of the club, anyway).

Anyway. Remember the Great Purge O'Crap of 2008? Yeah, me too.


And remember how I mentioned the two untouched boxes covered in clothes? I cleaned them off. But then....

Thirty dozen eggs makes a lot of omlettes., uh, reaccumulated. I would also like to point out that there are six pairs of shoes in that photo--my boots, black mary jane heels, black peep toes, black flats (can you tell I wear a lot of black?), running shoes, and my beloved Pumas--and that in the last two weeks, I have worn them all. Which tells you something about the variety of temperatures I've recently experienced (60 degrees on Thanksgiving in Georgia... 24 degrees in D.C. last night. If it weren't for the week in between, I'd have meteorological whiplash).

My progress since then has been nonexistent minimal. I have gone through exactly two boxes of clothing. That was two weeks ago. I need to get on the stick.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

The scene in my apartment most evenings during the month of December:

1) Sweatpants
2) Mug of tea or hot chocolate
3) No lights except the Christmas tree

Ahhhhh, the holidays!

Happy Thanksgiving (a week late, but whatever)

There are a lot of us DeJarnetts. When we all get together, there are 24 of us: two grandparents, four brothers, their four spouses, 12 grandchildren--ranging in age from 25 (me) to five (little cousin Calvin)--and two great aunts/uncles, not to mention assorted pets. It's chaos of the best possible kind.

Two of the babies are not our cousins--we have no idea who they are, in fact--and this photo was taken pre-Benjamin or any of the three youngest kids.

When were were kids, we could hardly wait to for visits with the cousins. As soon as everyone convened at my grandparents' house, we would disappear upstairs, free from our parents' prying eyes, to concoct some brilliant skit or dramatic dance performance (which was inevitably captured on video. We watched several last year, and they are awesome... awesomely horrifying, that is. As G says, "It's not so much how bad we were, it's how good we thought we were).

Most of us are in our late teens and 20s now, so skits are a thing of the past, but we still flock to the kids' table for dinner. Our antics are of a different variety--this year, as we sat around eating barbeque the day after Thanksgiving, we came up with ways to haze incoming cousins-in-law (the first of us is getting married this summer).

"They won't know what hit them when we start singing in parts."
"Hey--what if we all nonchalantly pull out instruments instead?"
"Yeah, we have flutes and an oboe and a horn--"
"Anybody have a violin?"
"I'll bring a rain stick."

1997? Don't know, but we're on vacation in Florida, and I am sick. This was also my awkward phase, as illustrated by my bangs and braces.
Before each meal, the whole family makes a circle and joins hands, the one brief time each year when we are all together--quiet and focused. And then there's this moment, right when we launch into the Doxology, as we slip into the well-worn harmonies, when you see everyone look around and smile. We're all musical, but in none of our other ensembles do we experience this particular feeling--of tradition and of family.

And then someone--usually my uncle Jeff--throws in a suspension and we're forced to hold the last chord until he decides to resolve it. And we all dissolve into laughter. Time to eat!

Cousins--all of us--and grandparents, Thanksgiving 2008