Saturday, November 28, 2009

Yummy happy holiday lemonade out of lemons

Ah, the holidays. Oh, the joys and the miseries of dealing with our loved ones. Have you found yourself complaining to a friend about an upcoming family event? You just know that Aunt So-and-So is going to make a snotty remark about your children. Uncle so and so will get drunk. Your brother's new girlfriend is too perfectly skinny and far along on her career and just knows it. Grandma will say something racist. Your nephew will sneeze without covering his mouth. Do you have this sort of list of things that drive you crazy that you just KNOW are going to happen and you just HATE dealing with? Does your friend that you've been complaining/kvetching/whining/moaning/"oh, yeah, well, listen to this one..." with - does she or he have this sort of list too??????

Bossy Girls to the rescue with a way to make this FUN: Have a race!

1. Write up a list of all those awful things that your relatives do. Your friend does the same.

2. Decide to have a race to:
--- see who can check the most things off within a certain amount of time
--- or compete to see who can check the most things off
--- or set up the race in any way that makes you happy!

3. Set up a scoring system if you want to get really really into this. Perhaps you can get extra points if a family member does their dreaded (now highly anticipated) thing more than once.

3. Arrange to check in with each other either as things happen, or every hour, or once a day, or? via text message or phone call or? to see if you are "winning". See? Now you are actually looking FOWARD to witnessing these awful behaviors. Now, when your sister does that annoying thing that used to make you cringe, you will think, "AHA! Chhhheck that off my list! I'm gonna win win win!

4. Whoever wins has to take the other out to lunch, or cook the other dinner, or treat the other to an afternoon out for a manicure, or?

Giving credit where credit is due: your head bossy girl over here read this beautiful idea in an Oprah magazine many many moons ago. I do not remember the year or the issue, let alone the author. If anyone knows this, please let me know in a comment so credit can be given. :-)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Halloween at the Lone Fir Cemetery

Why be normal, especially on Halloween? Forget bobbing for apples or drinking pumpkin beer in a bar. And our kids are too old for trick or treating. Some of us Bossy Girls enthusiastically volunteered at the Lone Fir Cemetery's Tour of Untimely Departures. The oldest cemetery in Portland has a tour every Halloween with actors at several graves portraying the people buried there. How cool is that?

The cemetery is everything you imagine a cemetery should look like, especially for Halloween: huge trees, elaborate tombstones, moss, falling leaves...

I ended up an actress myself for a while, being in the right place at the right time when the tour groups were getting backed up waiting for the ones in front. "Slow them down over there!" one of the organizers said. "Over there?" I asked, "I know that tombstone and that story." So I went and improvised portraying Mary Alice Oberly, who was buried there. Actually, she used to be buried there, but her sister was so mortified that Alice's male "customers" had paid for such an elaborate and large tombstone, that she had the epitaph erased and Alice's body moved to another cemetery. Ooh, I just love to play a bad girl! Now I really wish I knew all about what Mary Alice Oberly was really like.

Bossy Girls say: Step outside the box for holiday activities! Google away and you may be surprised to find out what activities are happening where you live. (I know, I know, we can't all live in fabbity-fab Portland Oregon, but I'm sure there are some cool things happening elsewhere, too.) Volunteer somewhere. Research old traditions and incorporate them when you throw a party at your own house. Make it a potluck if you are broke! What else can you think of?