All my presents are wrapped. The house is as clean as it's going to get (aside from the obvious daily chores) and things are peaceful... for the moment.
Every year on Christmas Eve, my husbands family had come to count on us to provide the dinner... normally we would stop somewhere and pick it up - having ordered it a week or so in advance (because it would be a LOT of food) and the tradition was seafood... mussels in white wine & butter sauce, shrimp marinara, baked/stuffed clams, squid.. etc and so on. It always cost us a fortune. But we always did it - because we could.
The amount I have spent on Christmas Eve dinner alone in the past simply blows my mind. That amount could have covered what I DID spend this year, plus ALL the presents we have gotten... PLUS a week or so of our groceries that I have sitting in the kitchen. (I have stocked up our groceries as if to prepare for some catastrophe, simply because we won't see another new penny hit our bank account until at LEAST the 5th of January... and that is only IF the tenants actually get us the rent on time this coming month.) Which I doubt they will... however for the record if they are late AGAIN I'm sending them an official warning (with all the mean I'm your land lord your my tenant you WILL pay me on time or be forced to leave lingo necessary.)
Wait... I got off track there. My point WAS, I still managed to pull it off. A much simpler home cooked seafood dinner for Christmas Eve, for us, and our very good friends. Thankfully I don't have to worry about cooking Christmas dinner this year, our friends are taking care of that one for me. I was, however, unable to get a ham, and the makings for cabbage and black eyed peas for New Years day which is something *I* have done every year... but I guess I will just deal with it.
Today, by FedEx, my husbands official job offer letter arrived. I am so relieved. If there wasn't so darn much personal information on it I would scan the thing and put it on here for everyone to see. He starts the 31st, and will only have to work until noon - then he starts full time that Monday. They started him on the 31st to make our medical benefits kick in a full 30 days sooner... Feb. 1st - I can't wait for that. My babies need their immunizations, and my son needs his hydroceals (I don't know if I spelled that right or not.) looked at. He will probably need minor surgery for it... which scares the hell out of me but I know it HAS to be done.
For the first time since moving here, I will be able to know exactly how much (minimum) my husband is getting every 2 weeks... and the MINIMUM will be the TOTAL amount he was getting before... and that's not counting his bonuses now. It will take a few months... but we will FINALLY be ok, and get back to normal.
I know I am rambling... I just feel real relief for the first time in months...
I am also very frustrated about the weather here - in the past week LOTS of snow has gone "just" to my north, and now "just" to my south - I was hoping for a white Christmas... but I guess there is always next year.
If I don't update... I hope everyone has a VERY Merry Christmas.