Just Another Day in Paradise

So, as you can see, I’ve returned from my trip to paradise, aka Key West.  While the Northeast was getting hit by another winter weather event, do you know what we were being hit with in Key West?  Gentle sea breezes blowing in off of the water, as we sat on our veranda, drinking tropical beverages and warming ourselves in the 79* heat, under a brilliantly sunny blue sky.

It was torture.

Snow?  What's that?

Snow? What’s that?

But I missed home.  I mean really, who needs to wake up at 9:00 am and take your key lime colored coffee mug out to your hotel room’s balcony and watch the ships as they sail by, and the busy goings on down on the street below?  Not me, that’s for sure.  I’d much prefer bitter cold temps with wind chills below zero and lots of snow to shovel.  Good exercise is what that is.  None of this lazy, lounging around for me any more!

Key west toes

And spa treatments?  Pfft, what am I, a Real Housewife?  You mean lounge around all day getting a massage and facial while drinking the most delicious (and why didn’t I think of that) strawberry infused water, while being completely pampered and spoiled by the spa staff?  No thank you, I’d prefer to just go to work and get yelled at all day.  Much more rewarding.

Key west spa

And speaking of drinking, I definitely don’t miss the Key Lime Pie Martini, served to me as we dined on a private island just off of Key West, while experiencing one of the most delicious meals I have ever tasted, sitting al fresco and gazing at the gently lapping waters on the beach just beyond the restaurant’s patio.  Nope, that’s crazy talk.  Who would miss that?  Back to just plain old water and sensible meals now that I’m home.  That’s so much better.

Key west martini

And whimsy?  Who needs whimsy?  Key West was lousy with it, I tell you.  From glowing menus, to flashing mugs filled with daiquiris, to viewing a sunset on an island where wild deer roam the beach.  It’s all just a bunch of poppycock!  Good riddance, I say.

Key west menus Key west fat tues Key west deer beach Key west deer

Not to mention all of the celebration!  A person could get a swelled head with all that attention.  Apparently, the hubs called ahead to the island, because it seemed as if everywhere we went, someone was wishing me a Happy Birthday and bringing me treats.  Sparkling Key Lime pie, mid-afternoon room service of champagne and strawberries, mid-afternoon room service of margaritas, with chips & salsa, Happy Birthday spelled out on a dessert, a special birthday menu delivered to me rolled up like a scroll . . . all way over the top and way too much celebratory nonsense for this unassuming, level-headed girl.  I mean really, it wasn’t even my birthday anymore!  For shame, Key West.  For shame.

Key west pie Key west strawberries Key west dessert Key West bday menu

Oh, and don’t get me started on the gorgeous sunsets and outdoor scenery.  It’s enough to make you sick!  Much better to be surrounded by the brown and white that is presently plaguing us at home.  That way, we get to be the ones to shine in our brightly colored snowpants and fuzzy hats!  Who would even notice us in our shorts and sandals, surrounded by all that beauty in Key West?  Nobody.  Nobody would ever see us.  Or find us . . . hmmmm.

Key west sunset 2 Key west island sunset Key West tree Key west blue heaven

So, like I said, it is really great to be home.  In fact, we returned just in time to experience a fresh coating of snow, and it looks like despite a brief respite that is reminiscent of the Key West weather, we will soon return to those winter-like weather conditions.  Who needs Key West?  Not this girl.  Nope.  I’m definitely not dreaming of the day when I can finally retire from my hateful job and move to a bungalow on the island, while the hubs goes out fishing every day and I lay in the sun, relaxing and writing, resting up for my job as a bartender at night in one of the “locals” bars.  Yeah, that’s absolutely ridiculous, and I’m frankly offended that you would even suggest it.  I mean, who am I . . . Hemingway?  Sheesh!

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One Year Closer to Death

So, my birthday was last week.  And I survived it.

If you are new here, you might not be aware that I am cursed.  My birthdays typically suck and/or some tragedy occurs on or around it as a result of my bad birthday mojo.  This year, I was going to try to escape the angel of death by being completely and absolutely still, and hoping it would just pass right by me.  I thought I had escaped it unscathed this time.  Until the next day.

(If you’d like a rundown of past birthday suckage, and no, I was not exaggerating about the death part, go here to edumacate yourself).

Actually, this year, the birthday angel lulled me into a false sense of security.  The week preceding my birthday was going swimmingly.  My colleagues took me out to lunch, unprompted, to a very nice restaurant, and actually paid for my lunch.  This is huge, as in preceding years, they have failed to even acknowledge that I had ever been born.  Not just that, but when I arrived at work 2 days before my birthday, I found this waiting for me:

office gifts

It was from my secretary, whom I believe I have previously mentioned as being quite rad.  It contained a bottle of wine, wine glasses, nail polish and plastic utensils.  A bit of an inside joke, there, but basically for my lunches at work.  See?  Rad.

The day prior to my birthday, I actually received a card from everyone at work.  Another rare occurrence that doesn’t happen every year.  In fact, I believe this is the first year that I received it on time, and that I didn’t have to basically give to myself.  That was another fun one.

Then, after work, I ran to the mall to take advantage of a few free birthday treats that I was to receive before the end of the month.  Sephora was giving out a little mini pack of lipstick & mascara, I had a free coupon for a smoothie, and I had received an email for $15 off any purchase at Ann Taylor, so I hit the sale rack and walked away with 2 sweaters for a mere $20.  Once I also completed the few returns I had to make while in the mall, I came out square.  Free mall trip, woo hoo!!

bday mall treats

When I returned home that evening, I found that I had even more birthday treats waiting for me.  There was this huge box that had arrived from my good friend Andrea.  I was doubly impressed that it arrived the day before my birthday, as she is notoriously (and adorably) Post Office averse.  Case in point . . . last year’s birthday package arrived at the end of March.  So, she really got it in gear this year, and made it a day early.  I am very impressed!

bday package

Inside, I found 4 gorgeous martini glasses and some mini bottles of booze.  Hmmm, anyone else sensing a trend here?  What do you think people are trying to say about me with their gift choices?  I cannot figure it out.

After a quick review of the contents of the box, and a quick change out of my work clothes, I then jetted off to have dinner with another good friend and her daughter.  We went to my favorite local sushi place, and she too showered me with presents and bought me dinner.  It was a very good day, to say the least, and it wasn’t even my birthday yet!

On the actual day, I was playing it coy and low key, so I took the day off of work, slept in, and generally relaxed for most of the day.  Granted, there was laundry and packing to do for my upcoming trip, but that wasn’t too much of a chore, considering.  It was a lovely, stress-free day that I quite enjoyed.

Once my kids got home from school, though, the exciting festivities began.  I came downstairs to encounter the kitchen transformed into a tropical paradise.  I was informed that this birthday’s theme would be “warm weather.”  As long as I remained indoors, I could very easily go along with this fantasy.

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Then there were the gifts.  For my birthday, I asked the hubs to get 2 things for me . . . a suitcase and new leather gloves.  Since my current pair look like this:

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He came through on both, so he did a great job.  But he didn’t stop there, of course. Because he’s him, and there are always more gifts.  More . . . interesting . . . gifts.  Such as . . .

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Movies?

And then, of course, there was another gift following my own personal birthday theme . . .

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There is gonna be some drinking going on up in he-ah!

And . . .

bday napkins

Classy? Sure, let’s go with that.

Then I opened this one . . . in front of my kids.  Yeah, thanks hubs.

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Front . . .

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Back.

Well, it is the 50th Anniversary edition, so really, it’s a super special gift.  Right?  Uh huh.

The next day I had to go to work.  Which sucked, but I just didn’t have enough leave to take that day off as well since I would be leaving early and getting on a jet plane (don’t know when I’ll be back again) . . . and heading to Key West for 3 days.  Or at least . . . I thought I was.  Until I received the call from school telling me that my youngest son had a temperature and had to go home.  Since the hubs was home that day, he picked him up and took him to the doc’s real quick.  Then I got the text:  Strep.  And then I had to make a decision:  go home to take care of my son or leave for Key West in 4 hours.

At that point, the mama bear gene kicked in big time and I started freaking out.  I didn’t want to go on vacation.  I mean I really wanted to go, but I didn’t want to just leave my sick son with my brother in law while I jetted off to a tropical vacation.  That felt very wrong, somehow, and I also just wanted to go home and hug and care for my baby.  Who, at this point, I wouldn’t see until Monday if we left.  I was so torn.  And I realized . . . the birthday curse had struck again.  Damnit!

Obviously, I came to my senses, after being talked down by pretty much everyone I consulted, including my husband.  My son was on meds and seemed ok, so we decided that we would go.  So, although that damn curse had hit again, this time affecting my poor son, I wasn’t going to let it ruin everything.  The birthday curse would not win this time.  So, we were off to paradise!

What I Did on My Winter Vacation . . .

Hey guys, remember me?  The former blogger that used to hang out on here every week or so?  You know . . . the girl with cute toes, bangs, and who occasionally wrote witty blog posts?  No, not ringing a bell?  Well, let me re-introduce myself to y’all then . . . Hi, I’m Misty.  How ya doing?

Since it’s been quite a while since you’ve heard from me, I figured I would give you an update on what’s been going on with me since I last checked in.  Before I get back to my normally brilliant and award-winning posts*, you’ll get this little update post.  Ok?  Ok, then.

* Neither brilliant NOR award-winning.

Val and I had a quick visit right before Xmas to exchange presents and get our toes done.

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Pretty holiday feets!

Even though, technically, we didn’t exchange since she didn’t bring my present with her, but she tells me that I will receive it when I visit her up in Jersey in a few weeks, and really, I was more excited to see her reaction to the presents I bought for her anyway.

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Dr. Hooves!

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Zombie mug!

Since they both received the Val lick of approval, I’m pretty sure I nailed it.  Huzzah!

Once Val was taken care of, I had to move on to the main event . . . the big C!  And this time, I mean it in a good (albeit stressful and completely insane) way . . . Christmas.  So, to get prepared, I needed to wrap.  So, I locked myself in my bedroom, pulled out all the gifts for the kids and family (and husband), and thus commenced a 2 day wrapping extravaganza!

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Although, towards the evening of the first day, I started getting somewhat parched.  Wrapping can really make a girl thirsty!  So, before I settled in for another few hours of back-breaking work (seriously, you sit on the floor hunched over wrapping paper for like 8 hours and not feel like you have a broken back when you finally try to stand up!), I decided that I needed some reinforcements.  Since I was quickly running out of time to whip up a few cocktails I had been meaning to try in preparation for my Xmas eve gathering of family at my house, I figured there was no better time than the present.  So, I whipped them up, got a tray, and carted those suckers upstairs to finish Day 1 of wrapping, while watching a little Elf and getting a nice buzz on.  And let me tell you . . . those gifts looked so good!!

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We had our annual holiday party at work where there was a White Elephant exchange, which should more aptly be called the liquor exchange, since that’s pretty much what everyone brings.  Not that anyone’s complaining!  This was my score:

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The wine is actually from my secretary and the champagne is leftover from a champagne punch made for the party.  Yep, good haul.  Oh, and I also met a little mini-me, in the form of one of my colleague’s kids!

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Twins!

And of course, ’tis the season to listen to festive holiday CDs in your car, made for you specifically by your good friend, Andrea.

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The evening before The Big Day, my kids were keeping close tabs on where that Jolly Old Fat Man was in the world, so they would know when they needed to be fast asleep.

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Training for future careers with the NSA.

Once Christmas morning arrived, as always, it was a normal crazy present-fest in the Laws household.  The kids tore through wrapping paper like it was their jobs, and the hubs and I sat drinking our coffee and putting batteries into the numerous items that required them, with our anxious and impatient children hovering over our heads, ready to snatch the coveted object the moment the cover was snapped back into place.  Good times, good times.

And lest you think the hubs and I didn’t participate in the gift exchange festivities, well . . . I see we haven’t met yet.  Suffice to say that the hubs and I excel at gift giving.  Need proof?  Please refer back to this little item, wherein I gave him a CAR for our anniversary!  Yeah, that’s how we roll.  (On another note, you would think buying my husband a huge gift like that a mere 2 months ago would give me a pass for having to come up with a special Xmas gift for him this year . . . you would think.  Sigh).  Anyway, this was the pile of presents waiting for me from him on Xmas morning . . .

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I was a VERY good girl!

And yes, if you are observant, you will note the 1D wrapping paper.  Last year it was Justin Bieber.  So, at least he’s keeping up with the tween heart-throb trend of the moment.  But the very first gift I opened from him wasn’t very humorous.  It hit a bit too close to home, despite my husband’s claims that the name on the tag is of a very trendy and reputable store in London and that it’s not a joke.  Sure.

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Ouch.

Although, after that unfortunately named gift, there were may more gifts to open and there was much silliness to be found . . .

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Because of my well-known love of fishing, naturally.

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Mmmmm, Bacon!

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Either the hubs realizes my love of both of these mens’ characters on their hit shows, or maybe he thinks I’m a gay man? Meh, probably the first one.

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Well, he got this right at least!

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Um, no. I am SO not a leather skirt kind of girl.

Oh, and you’re probably wondering what was in that big box, right?  (What’s in the box?  What’s in the box?!?!?!).  Well, that gift was not a joke.  Ahhh, the hubs knows me so well!

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Wine party at my house, you guys!!  You bring the wine, and I’ll chill it for you.  Bam!  Just like that.

The rest of the day went by very quickly, and involved more gifts, lots of food and drinks, and too many family members to count!  By the end of the day, as always, the hubs and I were beat and the kids were buzzing like they were on a 3 day sugar high.  Once we finally herded them up to bed, we crashed on the couch and didn’t even come close to getting through our yearly traditional viewing of White Christmas.  I think the hubs was out by Snow (possibly even Sisters), and I only made it until Choreography before I had to shut it off and call it a Xmas.

A couple days later, we took the kids on a quick trip up to New York City for their first time ever.  But, despite only being two days, it felt like a millennium, and we experienced a ton of stuff, so I think I’ll save that for a separate post.  Don’t wanna overdo it on my first trip back into the blogosphere after so long.  I wouldn’t want to pull a hammy!

So, how was your holiday break?  Do anything fun and exciting?  Share with the class . . .

Holiday Winner!!

When I posted this last week, I told everyone it would be a quick turn around.  So here we are, turning it around.

Turn the beat around . . . love to hear percussion . . .

Try to get that out of your head today!  Yeah, sorry about that.

mugs

Ok, so turning it around (the giveaway, not the beat!), let’s get this party started!

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And without further ado . . . the winner of the last giveaway of 2013 on Misty’s Laws is:

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LILY!!!

Well, Lily, my friend . . . it seems your week just keeps getting better!!  Starting with a minor fender bender, then an engagement, and finally, the most exciting thing to happen to you in your entire life . . . winning these two mugs!!!  Woo-hoo!

So, send me your info at mistyslaws at gmail dot com and I’ll get these in the mail to you as quickly as possible.

And, since this will possibly be my last post of the year, I just want to wish every single one of you a very festive and happy holiday, filled with fun, family and fruity cocktails!!  Feliz Navidad, my peeps.  Happy Everything!!

Holiday Quickie

Ok, I told y’all that I was going to do another giveaway before the holidays, and with commenting time, picking time and shipping time, in order to get the prize to the winner prior to the big day, I realize that I have to do this thing NOW.

So, that’s what this is.  I ordered a mug for someone for Christmas (if you receive it in the mail, act surprised and like you didn’t already see the same one on the site!) and was mistakenly sent multiple.  Thus, I am going to Santa them straight to you.  Holly Jolly, Fa La La.  Just call me your favorite Ho Ho Ho.

mugs

So, that is two mugs, each of varying size (one is a taller mug with “I Like Big Books and I Cannot Lie” on it, and one is regular sized with “Fra-GEE-lay!” on it) for you to win!

In order to enter, just comment below and tell me your favorite holiday beverage that you like to drink this time of year.  Be it egg nog, hot cocoa or a festive cocktail, just share it below and you will be entered.  I’ll give everyone a couple of days, but then I’m having my kids pick a name this weekend, so if you want in, comment quick!

That’s it!  Told you it was a quickie.  Wait, what did you think I meant?  Pervert!

You Win Some, You Lose Some

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In case you are wondering, the loser in this situation, at least based on recent occurences and evidentiary support, is me.  We’ll get to the winner in a moment.  But, as to that whole losing thing, it seems that my good buddy and pal, LIFE, has decided to be a cold, hard, manipulative bitch lately.  Maybe it’s that time of the month, huh Lifey ole friend?  And lest you think I might be over-exaggerating my present loser status (But Misty!  You just had a super rad weekend with Val!  Full of fun and shenanigans.  Surely, it can’t be all that bad, right?), let me present to you Exhibits A through D.

Exhibit A:

Last Friday I was hit with a massive chest cold which knocked me on my ass and out of work.  But, since my job sucks (still), I couldn’t just lay in bed in misery on that cold and rainy day.  Oh no, I need a note from a doctor to take a sick day.  Yes, that is correct.  My employer treats us like toddlers that cannot determine when we are able to make it into work and when one of our sick days needs to be taken.  So, despite the fact that my throat hurt like hell and anytime I spoke to someone, I sounded like an 80-year-old asthmatic with a pack-a-day habit (mmmm, sexy), I hauled my ass into the shower and out to the clinic to wait 2 hours just for a note.  That’s it.  No meds.  Nothing.  Just needed a note, thank you very much. 

Exhibit B:

So, remember that whole broken washer saga thing?  And remember how I commented to everyone that it was fixed and I had a functional washer once again?  Yeah, so scratch that.  The working washer only worked for a couple of weeks before it broke again.  And this time, we were told that we needed TWELVE parts to fix it.  So, we had to order the parts, wait for them to be delivered and then schedule another appointment for all of those many parts to be installed.  In the meantime, I’ve had to trek downstairs to my Father in Law’s place to use his washer, which is a huge annoyance.  And although I am very happy that at least I don’t have to go to a laundromat, I want my damn washer to work again!  Especially, when you go downstairs and put in your delicates, leaving another load of delicates in a basket pending washing, and you get busy with trying to decorate the tree and forget to go down again for 2 hours, and your Father in Law, who is just trying to be helpful, puts your wash in the dryer and washes your undies on hot with Tide.  Oy.  I love him for trying, but oy.  I really need my washer back.

Exhibit C:

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That.  Yep, that would be a mouse, peeking out from the dishwasher in my kitchen.  Now I know where all those little black pellets I found in my pantry have been coming from.

Exhibit D:

Tree

The Fucking Tree.  That Goddamn Fucking Christmas Tree!!  This might be a familiar tale, if you have been reading this blog for a while, because it seems that I go through this same Groundhog Day extravaganza every single year.  You see, I’m married to an elf.  He is the most holly jolly of all Christmas elves, while I tend to skew more towards a Grinch-like countenance.  However, over the years, he has definitely pulled me over to the dark candy cane side of holiday spirit.  Which is all well and good, until it comes to the tree.  I am the one who has to decorate the thing.  Meaning lights, bows, ornaments.  The kids help with the ornaments, but up until that point, it’s all me.  Oh, did I mention I’m allergic to pine?  Yeah, that’s another little added bonus to the decorating hell I seem to find myself in every year. 

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This is what my arms look like after a few hours wrestling lights onto the tree.

And look, I’m not trying to be a martyr about this whole thing.  I’m not forced to do the tree, I do it willingly, even knowing what will happen to my arms.  It hurts and itches for a few hours, then is all gone by the next day, so I can deal.  Plus, the hubs just doesn’t have time to do everything, and he does all the outside lights.  So, it’s totally fair.  What isn’t fair is when you spend hours wrapping the lights all around this big majestic beast of a tree in your living room, getting it to look just perfect, and making sure every single strand is working and lighting up before plugging each one into the next . . . only to have the entire thing go dark the next day.  Then, you realize it is the bottom strand that is dead, and are happy your husband picked up an extra strand at Home Depot the previous weekend, and wrestle with the tree to remove that bottom strand and then replace it with the brand new, just out of the box one . . . only to have the whole damn tree go out again the next weekend after you’ve already put the bows on it (in case you’re wondering, I left it dark for a while before replacing that first bottom strand)!  Not believing it could possibly be the brand new strand you put on just a couple of days prior, you test out all sorts of things, before you come to terms with the fact that the new strand is indeed the culprit.  So, you pull that whole thing off, discover one extra strand in one of the Xmas boxes and put that on . . . and a half hour later, everything but that strand goes out.  You are now super pissed, out of lights, and possibly having a mini-breakdown, as you throw a tantrum, complete with whining, stomping, and threats to get a fake tree next year. 

So, in case you lost count, that would be FOUR times the lights went out on the tree, THREE restringing of the lights, ONE temper tantrum and ONE threat to get a fake tree.  All with the kids asking a million times if it’s time now to put the ornaments on.  And that’s just THIS year.  The same damn thing happened last year.  I think I may be cursed.

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So, still doubtful that I’m a big, fat loser in all of this?  Yeah, I didn’t think so.  The Defense rests!!

Now, on to the winner in this scenario . . . the winner of my most recent giveaway.  Yay!!

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In case you forgot . . .

And, as always, I left the pickings to my spawn.  More specifically, my oldest and first born son, 8.

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And the winner is . . . . . .

Emmapick

EMMA5150!!!!

Congrats Emma5150.  Send me all of your info (mistyslaws at gmail dot com) and I will get this prize package out to you presently.  I might just be able to swing it so as to arrive before Xmas!!

And, for all of you big losers out there (don’t worry, you’re in good company . . . with ME), stay tuned for yet another giveaway coming next week!  How did you get so lucky as to get TWO chances to win Misty Laws awesomeness in one month?  Well, partly because of a shipping snafu that sent me extra stuff that I’m going to pass along to you, but mostly just because I’m awesome.  I will even try to post, pick and send in time to arrive before Xmas as well.  No promises, but I’ll try.

Things To Be Thankful For

Around this time of year, you will see many bloggers posting about the things they are thankful for.  Things like . . . family, friends, pumpkin pie, etc.

Well, this is not going to be one of those posts.  I’m not going to give you a list of things that I am thankful for.  I mean, I could, of course.  Obviously, there are many good things in my life, and many reasons to be thankful.  And this is the time of year people reflect and try to be appreciative of all the things that don’t suck right now.  So, this would be the obvious time to give you my thankful items.  But I won’t do that to you.  Because really, do you care about all of the stuff I’m thankful for?  No, you don’t.  You’ve got your own shit going on, your own list of things, your shopping and Thanksgiving meal to prepare.  Why would I make you read some list of stuff you don’t care about?  I wouldn’t.  Because I care, dammit.  You’re welcome.

So, instead of some list, what I’m gonna give you is this . . .

A giveaway!!

That’s right.  So, even if you don’t have anything to be thankful for right now, if you win these items, you will.  See how that works?  I’m a giver.  And for that you can be thankful.  Bam!

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There are some pretty fun things here, yes?  And if you win, and there’s something that you don’t want, well guess what is right around the corner?  That’s right . . . it’s Re-giftmakus!!!

Just in case you can’t see all of the goodies in the picture above, let me break it down for you:

– Bleeped out Knee Socks
– Blingtastic mouse
– Retro hand set for cell phone
– Beer keg koozie
– Oh Snap magnet
– Could You Be a Bigger Bitch? gum (you know you wanna give that to someone).
– Maybe You Touched Your Genitals hand sanitizer
– Work Sucks red knit cap (Office Space style)

All you have to do to be entered is comment.  Yep, no hoops to jump through here, folks.  It’s the holidays and we’re all tired already.  And we haven’t even hit Black Friday yet.

As always, my spawn will do the honors and pick a big wiener in a week or so.  Whenever I get around to it.  Because I’m busy, that’s why.  Don’t rush me!

In the meantime, I hope all of you and yours have a wonderful Thanksgiving, and celebrate it as was intended by our forefathers . . . with a big full belly in front of the tube watching a football game with some booze in your hand.  Ahhhh, now that’s what I’m thankful for!

And do not fear . . . the epic tale of Val’s most recent visit is in the works and pending for next week.  It will be a two-parter.  Yes, it was that epic.  As if you had any doubt.

Happy Turkey Day!!

(And if you’re so inclined, feel free to tell me what you’re thankful for in the comments.  Only if you want to, though.  No pressure).

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