Happy Holidays!

Yeah, yeah, I know I am a little late on wishing everyone happy holidays. Maybe at this point I should just say “Happy New Year!” instead.

Sorry for the silence, can’t believe I haven’t written anything since October. I kept meaning to, but life was pretty busy and strange for a while and then there just wasn’t much to write about after everything settled down.

So, to recap the past couple months…

A couple weeks after my last post I was laid off, and have been unemployed since. It hasn’t really felt like it has been that long though. My official last day was November 15, but I had planned to take that time off anyway so at first it pretty much just felt like vacation. And a much needed vacation at that. I hadn’t taken any real time off from work since our honeymoon, just a few days here and there.

Sean had a gastric bypass November 17, which is why I had already planned to take that time off. He was in the hospital for a few days, coming home November 20. The surgery went well and I think he has been happy with the results, although it has been a big lifestyle change and he is still adjusting.

November 20 also happened to be the day of a Ben Folds concert we had tickets for in Charlotte, but since Sean obviously couldn’t go I took my mother. I felt a little guilty about leaving him alone on his first night home, but he assured me it would be fine. Plus his mother was with him for a few hours.

The concert was great, but we had to leave early because my mother fainted. Her blood pressure was low and she hadn’t really eaten that day. Those factors combined with a warm room and standing up for hours resulted in a fainting spell. Just to be safe she opted to go to the hospital there in Charlotte, so we got to spend the night in the emergency department and didn’t get back home until 6am. She stayed with us a couple more days just so she could be sure she was okay to drive, then headed home.

By this point it was the week of Thanksgiving. Of course, Sean couldn’t really eat then; he was still on a liquid diet. Because of this we just had a friend over for a small turkey dinner, nothing special. I really just wanted some home-cooked turkey and cranberry sauce. The friend had to work on Thanksgiving, so we did it a couple days early… then on Thanksgiving Day we went out to eat with Sean’s family at Cracker Barrel. I must say it was the most stress-free Thanksgiving we have had in years.

See what I mean by things being busy and strange for the first couple weeks of unemployment? Those first few weeks were gone before I knew it, and with Sean being home as well it really did feel more like a vacation.

Finally at the end of November I got my last checks from Mo, and was officially done with them. At this point I was able to file for unemployment. Can you believe they still haven’t processed it a month later?? Well, I guess it isn’t too hard to believe. I bet they are very busy right now. By the time I get my unemployment backpay I will have started a new job!

Christmas was pretty good this year. Surprisingly good actually. I say “surprisingly” because neither one of us had much Christmas spirit, we didn’t even get a tree or decorate this year. Money was tight for everyone, and we were being cautious since I didn’t have any job prospects until just before Christmas. On top of all that, my Grandfather was sick this year and he is the one that normally organizes our family gathering. So my family just did a small get together with the local people back home.

We ended up just doing a few small things with Sean’s family. Having dinner with a different family members on the 23rd and 24th, then cooking lunch for everyone and doing a small gift exchange on the 25th. It wasn’t anything big, but it was still nice.

All of the gifts we acquired are things we can both enjoy. There were parts for the Mini, new Staub pots, a new Shun knife, a second TiVo, and an awesome espresso machine. Some will obviously be used/enjoyed more by one than the other, but I think we can both appreciate each gift and that makes it better. The best parts were spending time with family though. I loved having a four day weekend with Sean, and miss him now that his break is over.

Soon I will be starting a new job. It isn’t really what I was looking for salary-wise, but it is better than unemployment (assuming they ever pay me!) and it will allow me to learn new skills that will help me find a better job later on. I look forward to it, but I know it will be a lot of new things to learn.

I hope everyone had an excellent Christmas, and I hope that 2011 will be a great year!