Monday, December 24, 2007

The Christmas Run-Around

Thursday: Lunchtime: Buy turkey. Finish work: Head home, do and check a few bits before dashing out to town to pick up a few bits and bobs.

Friday: Day off. Hoped to have time to blog, but didn't have the time between making some things and wrapping others. Well, and some of the things that I made. Friday evening: Off with Quna to her place, about 2.5 hours away, where she had wanted to hop once more before Christmas.

Saturday: Head another couple of hours north to see Quna's grandad, parents, and sister. On our way home, a policecar sped past us - as it was roughly Ing's patch, we wondered if it could have been him :) It was then roughly four hours back down south to see my parents, where we stopped for the night.

Sunday: We were in the car for 10:05 so that Quna would be able to listen to The Archers (She's so Radio 4! :) ) - myself, Quna, my sister, and a big pile of pressies. For I am having all of those at my home for Christmas :) The drive back to mine to slightly longer than usual - 3.5 hours, rather than the more usual 1.5 hours.
My sister and I hopped out to Tesco while Quna went up to Waitrose. She didn't want to have to worry about me taking my time, or screaming children running around. As it happens, we actually did encounter a screaming child - she'd lost her mummy. Awhhhhh :( I asked if she was ok and looked up a couple of aisles to see if I could see anyone dashing around but not looking at food, but the girl was more content at running around shouting, and seemed to meet up with some other children after a short time. We managed to pick up what we wanted though, as well as a couple of ingredients that Quna couldn't find in Waitrose - she wanted to bake ginger muffins, phwoooar :)

Then it was back to mine, via a Majestic Wine Warehouse that is just around the corner from me. Quna walked over to meet us there. We had a good wander around and chose eleven bottles of wine between us (you have to buy it in twelves, but I figure it's nice to be 'forced' to buy so many as it means I don't keep buying the same things or something :) )
The twelth bottle was a bottle of champagne that Quna had wanted. She found Waitrose didn't do it, so had then phoned the wine place to check that they had one, and what price it was - £17, they told her.

It turns out that £17 is the price for two (or more) bottles. So, how much would you think for just the one? £20? Perhaps £25? Keep going - £30.

Quna was not impressed, to put it lightly - it was now late enough that we now couldn't go anywhere else to look. Had they have told her that in the first place on the phone, we could have continued looking elsewhere first. Quna explained her frustration to the bloke behind the till, who then went and got his manager. Quna again explained her frustration to him (I think she didn't - quite - call them "cretins!"). The shop staff refused to help, so we chose a twelth bottle of wine instead and left, with Quna vowing never to use them again (it's a shame too - the last time [which was also the first time] we were in there, they were actually quite helpful), and complaining about the smug assistant as we walked out the door.

Fortunately, none of this prevented Quna from making a deliiiiicious chicken lasagne, or from baking yummy ginger muffins.

After we'd eaten, Quna and my sister shut themselves in my living room to complete something related to a Christmas present for me, while I shut myself in my spare room and tried to finish some things related to Christmas presents for both of them. Ok, so I didn't finish, but I did make good progress :) We stopped after a while to eat profiteroles, complete with generous lashings of chocolate :)

And today, Monday, Christmas Eve, my sister has my flat to herself, whilst Quna and I are both at work. Oh, speaking of which...

Sunday, December 16, 2007


Ok ok, so I didn't quite manage it by Saturday :) But it's the thought that counts! ;)

So, that was the Thursday daytime. Which I spent longer talking about than I'd intended, because the more significant part was the Thursday evening.

This was the Birthday "do" back at my boss' home - us lot from work and our spouses ("or girlfriends, but not both please" *cough* ;) ) were all invited to dinner. Quna left college a couple of hours early so that she could get over here on time. Yay! :)

Now, Quna has met some of the people that I work with before - one Friday lunchtime when she was over, I invited her over to the pub with us - however, this was the first time that she had met some of m' colleagues, and her first time for meeting any of their "other halves".

Obviously, Quna was a little apprehensive about such an occasion - especially when almost everyone there had known old Mrs M for several years.

She did superbly.

Whilst the majority of the talk afterwards concerned one chap's partner (she was also, apparently, really nervous about meeting everyone for the first time) who had ended up being seated next to me. Now, I don't know when she started drinking, but her partner (with whom I work) said he'd be surprised if she'd drunk anything beforehand. Well. That's certainly the first time I've had pepper ground into my lap by someone using an electric pepper mill whilst claiming, "It's a bit like a vibrator! Did you get that? I said, IT'S A BIT LIKE A VIBRATOR!"

This was at the point that we had only just sat down to the starter. From someone whom I have met, briefly, once before.

Oooookaaaaay... ;) Personally, I just tried not to encourage her ;)

So, the real question left hanging in the air after that night... How would things with everyone go come the company's Christmas dinner (paid for by the company, for all employees and their other halves) on Saturday the 15th?

Wednesday, December 05, 2007


The 'least young' of my two bosses had his 70th birthday yesterday.

Well, I say yesterday, I mean last week.

Well. I say last week, I mean two weeks ago.

Still, that was when I *thought* about blogging about it, and they say it's the thought that counts... No? Bugger. ;) I was going to try writing this last night, but ended up getting distracted buying some kitchen knives from Amazon. And making my Christmas list. And eating. And doing some washing up. And reading mobile phone reviews (I think I've got it down to a choice of two...). And talking to Quna. And talking to my parents.


Bloody hell, I did quite a lot last night after all :)

It's tradition at my company that you have to buy cream cakes on your birthday. A tradition that m' boss upheld in his usual manner - by not buying cream cakes (in fairness, I doubt he knows what a "soo-per-marr-kit" actually is). Instead, we had some of his birthday cake and some doughnuts. Personally, I didn't think the birthday cake was too bad (it was one of those with an old picture on the top that his family had bought when they had a big get-together in honour of his birthday two weeks ago), and had one-and-a-half helpings.

A couple of days before his birthday, I'd suddenly been hit one evening with "ARGH! What happened about all of us putting our money together to buy him a present?"
Apparently, I was on holiday when my other boss had found out that he didn't want anything from us, as he had things on his 60th and 65th, and it seemed wrong (he felt) to get something every five years.

Still, I decided we really ought to at least get him a card from all of us (hey, we're all men here now - the women used to think about that sort of thing ;) ), so I hopped out at lunch to get one.

Eeeeven better than that, I ended up buying two cards (one for all of us to sign, one from me), and, AND... Some balloons! :)

As there were eight of us and eight balloons, I gave each person a balloon to blow up as I had them sign the card. You'd be surprised (well, I was) at how many spoil sports there were :) Still, my other boss had fun blowing up the ones that other people didn't want to :)

And then we all had a good laugh at my piss-poor attempt at blowing up my balloon :) Crikey, it's been a while since I've done that :) Whilst some of it was down to technique, there was one other tiny problem, as it transpired... There was a hole in the damn thing! I can't believe I bought eight balloons and I never got to properly blow one up in the end! :)

(More to follow...)