Dec 24, 2012

Twas The Day Before Christmas

Are ya'll set for Christmas?  I hope so... only one more day left!  I really didn't have time to set up my usual Christmas decor, so I did the best I could on short notice.  Here's my tiny little tree with an actual tiny working Santa train underneath.  If you look carefully, there's a tiny little present, too.  Fake, of course.

On the other side of my dining room is the wrought iron tree that I keep up year round to hang the ornaments as I make them.

Right next to the tree is the doorway to the kitchen.  This year, I hung my Christmas cards around the door.

In my previous post, I mentioned that my new employer held their 2nd Annual Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest.  I did try to find an "ugly" sweater but I didn't have much notice so I was just an observer this year.  There were some interesting contestants though!  Winners were chosen by coworker votes.  Take a gander...

1st Place
2nd Place
3rd Place
Honorable Mention
Honorable Mention
Apparently, suppliers send the company lots of gifts during the holidays.  The company calls the 200+ corporate employees to the front of the building to draw names for the gifts.  Management puts on Santa hats and passes the gifts out as names are drawn.  My name was drawn 2nd!  Can you believe that?  What gift did I get? Something called gourmet cheese straws.  They're kinda like cheese nips.
Later in the day, my employer catered in lunch.  We had Chicken George, salad, and french fries.  Chicken George is basically chicken fingers with a special dipping sauce.
Two of the other staff accountants are behind on their account analysis so I've been trained a little bit on it and have been muddling my way through their accounts.  There's a lot of research involved to ensure the entries from other departments are correct.  I met the CEO and he gave me a warm welcome and told me the company would keep me busy.  :)
Winter has hit the midwest with a vegeance!  I left work early on Wednesday and what should've taken 40 minutes to travel home took me 2 hours.  I drove in whiteout/blizzard conditions and barely could see the road.  There were 7 vehicles in a line going the same direction as me... we all were going 15-20mph.  As I pulled into my city, my Dad called me to tell me to stay at a hotel/motel in the city where I worked.  Oops, too late... but it was touching that he was thinking about my travel home and thought enough to call.  The next day highways were closed and sheriff's depts in two counties recommended not traveling when I called them.  I finally ventured out around noon to head for work.  Once I got out of my county -- which was nerve-racking -- the rest of the roads where clear.  I spent two days chipping ice off my driveway!  Here's what The Homestead looks like after our first snowfall of the season:
Someone asked me how Celeste likes the winter weather.  She's got a double coat, so the snow doesn't seem to phase her unless it's deeper than her little legs... which is most of the time.  I clear out a good section of the backyard so she can do her business.

For the past 3 days, I have been battling 100-103F fever, sore throat, and slight cough. Today, I woke up with white spots toward the back of my throat so I decided to go to the doctor.  The doctor said I have an upper respiratory infection for sure and the lab was slow for the strep test, so I don't know if I have it or not.  He put me on antibiotics and said it would take care of both.  I'll be foregoing Christmas festivities in an effort to get more rest, and don't want to take the chance of getting anyone else sick.
I received word that an ornament I did for an exchange finally arrived at its new home.  (It helps if I put the correct address on the envelope!)  The recipient is Glenda of Cross Stitch and Cat Hair.  Here's what I stitched for her:

Design: Christmas Cardinal
Designer: Stoney Creek
Fabric: 14ct Zweigert White with Silver Metallic Aida
Fibers: DMC, Kreinik
Embellishments: Handmade Cording, Snowflake buttons
Until next time,



Anonymous said...

I know that feeling, Meari! I went to be on Thursday feeling like I had the flu! I’ve been coughing my head off ever since! I hope you feel better soon.

Peggy (who’s off to sing at Midnight Mass in a couple of hours, cough and all)

Sarah Beth said...

I sure hope you feel better soon.

Anonymous said...


I sincerely hope that you are better now...the stuff going around is nasty.

I don't remember seeing a picture of Celeste before. She is adorable!
A great companion.

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas.


Faith... said...

My you have had a week! I do hope you are resting up and will soon feel better...

Celeste is a little cutie!

Those sweaters are U-G-L-Y but I am not sure they picked the right one for first place - LOL

Happy Holidays Meari!

Anonymous said...

Meari you are lucky to have snow for Christmas - ours came fast and furious and now it is all gone - that's the Wet Coast for you.

Your coworkers' ugly sweaters are a HOOT! Maybe I should start thinking of making one for myself - I have never owned one.

Celeste looks very happy with her fur all fluffed up.

I love your Christmas decorations - we too went minimal this year! I will post some pics over the holidays.

I really hope that you are feeling better so that you can enjoy some Christmas treats.


Anonymous said...

I hope you feel better soon as this is the time you want to be well to go to your family's place.

Congratulations on your win.

Hope you do not get too much snow.

Love the cardinal ornament.


Anonymous said...

I hope you feel better soon. Congrats on the cheese stick win. It sounds like you landed a great job with a great company. The orny you stitched is beautiful!!!!
Take care.
Betty in AZ (ILCS)

rosey175 said...

It's our turn for some snow and I'm looking forward to being stranded at home (as long as the power stays on).

I love your little decorations; the wrought iron tree looks awesome with all the stitched goodies dangling on it. You're amazing at finishing projects too. The little cardinal looks beautiful!

Merry Christmas to you and yours~ :D

Anonymous said...

Get Well Wishes and a very Merry Christmas.
Hope you and Celeste will be warm and cozy at the homestead
and you will get some much needed rest and maybe a little stitching done.

Love the Christmas Cardinal ornament. Great job.

HUGS, Dee in TN

Denise SA said...

Love your little finish and I adore your iron work tree
Happy holidays

*-* said...

In this part of the world it is almost 366 days until Christmas.
After 30C today, it was Christmas at home, Sydney. I'm exhausted, the heat is so debilitating.
I love your ornament tree, Christmas decorations & that beautiful red Cardinal.
I hope you are enjoying the day, as I toddle off for shut eye.

Kathy A. said...

I do hope that you are feeling better soon. Love that pretty little cardinal. Merry Christmas.

Claudette497 said...

I Hope you feel better soon! It seems like you landed a great job, I hope you keep enjoying it. I think the second place contestants were robbed - yikes there are some ugly sweaters out there! Merry Christmas!

Anonymous said...

Blech! What a terrible time to get sick. Hope you feel better soon!!!

~ Lisa N. in California

Mouse said...

love those sweaters .... congrats on the win ... sorry about the lurg hope you are feeling much better now ....
gorgeous shot of you house in the snow ... you can keep it and hellooo Celeste how lovely to see you :)
gorgeous ornament too :) love mouse xxxxx

Anonymous said...

So sorry to hear you are under the weather. Take care of yourself and get well soon. Merry Christmas.

Linda M

htimcj said...

Feel better soon. It does sound like you have strep with the spots on the throat. Cute decorations.

Pam in IL said...

Sorry you had to miss the holiday festivities. Hope you feel better soon.

Looks like your new company has a nice holiday celebration.

Merry Christmas!

Vickie said...

Celeste looks happy indeed!
I am sorry you are sick. I do hope the antibiotics are working quickly.
So much work getting rid of the ice, isn't it? I slipped just the tiniest bit on it 3 days ago, and am still in elevated pain from it. :(

Terry said...

Sounds like you've been having lots of fun at your new job. Hope it continues to be a fun/great place to work.

Love how you finished the ornament.

Glad you made it home safely during the storm and hope that you start feeling better soon. Hopefully you can go spend some time with your family after you feel better to make up for missing Christmas with them.

SoCal Debbie said...

The snow looks beautiful! The cardinal ornie is so cute! What a great exchange gift!

Kay said...

I am hoping that you are starting to feel better. Had a nasty cold that worked its way through our house weeks before Christmas. Your house looks so festive all decorated! I love the exchange gift you made! I love cardinals!! Be well and Happy New Year to you!

Anne said...

Merry Christmas Meari! Love your ornament tree! It's fabulous! Those sweaters are hilarious! Super ugly and awesome! Awww! Little Celeste is adorable! She's just so precious!! I hope you are okay now with the antibiotics and that you don't have strep. Take care MEari!!

Rachel S-H said...

That ornament is GORGEOUS!

Anonymous said...

Being sick at Christmas is the pits; trust me, I know. I'm so sorry it happened to you. I'm loving your Christmas preparations - especially that wrought-iron tree. I'm gonna have to get me one of those because I work on ornaments throughout the year, too. The ugly sweater contest looks like it was great fun, and I love your Christmas cardinal. Your recipient is a lucky person. Best wishes for a *healthy* and peaceful 2013.

Carol said...

So sorry to hear you were sick for the holidays, Meari--hopefully you're on the mend now! The Christmas sweaters really made me smile--and your cardinal ornament is stunning. I love ornament son the diagonal like that...

The snow hit us, too--work even got cancelled on Wed. night!! But, we only got 5 or 6 inches, thank goodness. So glad little Celeste doesn't seem to mind the cold. She is such a cutie :)

Akila said...

Hope you are feeling better now. Love your Christmas decoration. Very simple and elegant. Funny sweaters indeed :)

Nancy M said...

Nice finishes the past couple of posts! Sounds like work will be a nice place to go from now on instead of dreading it! Lucky you to have little trees! I did my normal 3 large ones this year. I have only one down so far! Seems like the flu bug has gotten worse lately. Brett came home yesterday for our larger family celebration and he didn't feel well. Everyone pretty much stayed clear of him! LOL Hope you have a safe and happy New Year!

Vickie said...

Very Late comment...but Celeste is cute as always! Love your ornaments...I wish I could finish mine like you do yours...sigh...