Saturday, December 30, 2006

Hey Sgt



This was what I brought to my neighbor's - salmon and baby corn on the left, veggie in the middle, shrimp and cucumber on the right. It probably cost me about $20 to make six rolls - plus an hour or two of time. Typically these are best eaten the day they're made (the rice gets a funny texture the next day.) Don't forget the duck sauce and soy sauce!

Friday, December 29, 2006

Two years?

I've wasted two years blogging??? Not time wasted, just time entertaining (mostly myself, from my sitemeter stats.... Steff wrote a great piece about how "I write for myself" and I can't find it now.)

I'll give you some of my favorite quotes while I ramble on a bit here...

When you meet someone special you'll just know. A real relationship can't be forced.
It just comes about effort-lent-less-ly. (Michael Scott)

I started blogging because someone (name concealed to protect the guilty party) sent me a link to Waiter Rant, and said "You'd like this" and b o y were you right!! Plus it was a slow day at work, and well.... you know.

I guess if you don't jump you'll never know if you can fly. (Miranda Lambert)

So tonight I am making sushi rolls and I will hang out at my neighbor's retirement party (except I think we're not supposed to know that's what it is....)

I am going to use smoked salmon and baby corn for one or two rolls, and some others will have (cooked) shrimp and some cucumber, and then I will do a third one with baby carrotts and the other two veggies. Yummy. The rice is cooling now.

Speaking of parties... are you going to make resolutions? I'm not. I break them. I do think about goals this time of year. Like learning to play the piano with TWO hands. And I have to figure out what my next adventure will be, now that I checked off "parasailing". (No JV, I am not going to skydive.)

I believe that we form our own lives, that we create our own reality, and that everything works out for the best. I know I drive some people crazy with what seems to be ridiculous optimism, but it has always worked for me. -- Jim Henson.

Have a great 2007.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

I just want a stove

Among the many things I apparently have to consider when purchasing a new stove (thank you, Santa, for bringing me a benefits check giving me back about 1/2 of what I've put out for braces this year!!!) is...

certified sabbath mode.


As Tim the Toolman Taylor would say, "Uuuhhhghhh?"


for me it's just a feature I'll never give another thought to, kind like that top row of buttons on my microwave. I think too many consumer products are loaded with "extra features" that go unused because people forget/don't know the feature exists or can't recall how it works.

But back to the topic at hand, isn't a mode that lets you still use the oven on the sabbath kind of like a little white lie? I mean no disrespect. But if you wish to adhere to certain customs, you can't bake your cake and eat it too. Or can you?

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

I hope I never looked like this

I am on a mission to clean out my grandmother's hutch, which sits in a corner of my kitchen. It has been stuffed full of cake decorating magazines and random cookbooks forever and I am going through and throwing away anything I don't want. This includes tearing out the 3 recipes I might try in any given cooking magazine.

As proof of my packrat shame I found a Womens Day Low Fat Meals magazine. The cover said "display until September 1, 1994". Yeesh.

(Funny, I was expecting then and I don't think I wanted to even LOOK at a cookbook then. I was sick my whole first trimester and lost 10 lbs, and then ballooned up at the end to have a 9lb 3 oz baby)

Anyway, the recipes in it were crap - nothing I want to try (salads with a "satisfying portion of cheese... hellooooo!)

However it did contain this little gem:




Kinda looks like the Cheesecake Hor who I realized is NOT on my links, sorrrry, and has some type of pan cookie feud going on. No?? Well, maybe not but that's one hot little workout outfit, huh? Grooooovy.

PS: if you want a Vitamix 5000, go make that wish come true.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

It's Beginning


...to look TOO MUCH like Christmas around my house.

My husband does the decorating, with the kids. Every year, this year in particular, I have said things like "do we really need TWO big trees?" and every year they look at me like I just ran over Rudolph with my SUV.

I have attempted to capture some of the mirth and madness in a modest Flickr show. I don't know if I've done it right, but... here:

http://www.flickr.com/gp/93483329@N00/938qmS

Let me give you some of the highlights:

  • Five trees- (in a really small house) ... I like the front one, with the Beleek Irish china ornaments, red balls, candy canes, etc. Plus under that we have the lighted houses from Rockwell's painting of Stockbridge - I would be happy with this one tree. But no, my son has one next to his nativity set and his Yankee lamp, on his dresser. My daughter has TWO... (this is where I start to feel like Seuss... one tree, two tree, Red Tree, Blue.... the blue one pays homage to her wall mural of the beach, and the palm trees) The last tree is the one in the family room, with all of the Hallmark/home made type ornaments. It requires rearrangment of too much furniture AND the deconstruction of the scrapbook corner I've carved out. This pains me, greatly. It too has a lighted village underneath. Of course. You can literally stand outside of my house and watch the dials on my power meter spin this time of year.
  • Santas - we have a bleached Santa, one who makes me think about sodder and wonder if he would melt in the flame of a... anyway, we have an Irish one (or two, I think I forgot to photo one), a Santa busily doing taxes, and coundown Santa. Plus a few others I've forgotten to photograph, now that I look around.
  • We have nativity scenes in each of the kid's room along with the figures from when I was little (Good old Gloria, still hanging around above the manger.) Christmas pictures, of course. (Although my Mom made that victorian one so I do really like that.)
  • Candles... I didn't photograph all of the candles but they're everywhere. I usually don't have 90% of them lit.
  • Wreaths... lots of wreaths, on every door in the house. EVERY door. And the bows in the bathroom - well let's just say that every year I call up Suzy and complain that "...they're baaaaaaaaack"
  • The grand finale... the lights above the kitchen cabinet. A few years ago we re-did the kitchen and added on the family room. It was pretty much an ordeal that lasted from the beginning of October to Christmas Eve, literally. (Linoleum issues I don't care to specify) Well when he decided to DRILL A HOLE in the brand new cabinets over the microwave, so that he could plug in his lighted garland, I lost my mind. I literally left the house.

It won't be long until it's all packed away. THIS is why I have a full attic.

Saturday, December 23, 2006


So many of my friends are having a difficult time this Christmas. John, I wish I could take you out for a cup of coffee and just listen to stories and help somehow. Beth, my heart aches for you and your family, beyond words. Mark and Anne, my thoughts are with you. K, I hope you sail through your medical stuff this time around - you know you have a special place in my heart.

I have one or two truly TRULY close friends who mean the world to me. Do I count Suzy? She's my sister. We are lucky to have the kind of relationship that a sisterhood can be. I can lay all my junk on the table (figuratively, no, I don't have junk JV...) and say "here". She doesn't always just rush to say "you should do this" or shy away from the problems where there might not be an answer apparent right now.

Sometimes the best thing you can do for a person is to just hear what they have to say, and acknowledge that yes, I know you feel this, and it sucks, and I would give anything to change it, but even though we both know I can't, I will still listen any time you need to talk about it. You can tell me anything, let your guard down and take the mask off, and I won't be disappointed in you. I am blessed to have a couple of people in my life who let me take off my mask when I need to, and even more blessed to be able to do the same thing for them.

There are people who give me hope. Little Nolan, and the happiness I feel for his parents. Also, knowing that across the ocean, a good friend of mine will marry and start to really attain the career he's been hoping to have in 2007. Sometimes things really DO have a happy ending. In the new year we will be able to spend so much more time with Suzy since she's rejoining the world of the daytime shift-ers. The kids are just THRILLED.

I wish for you all, PEACE in your family gatherings, the comfort of a close friend that you can open your heart to, and hope for a better day in 2007.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

A Nifty Gifty

If you have lots of current digital pictures, or can scan some old ones, click on over here and check this out.

I made a gorgeous linen-cover book (if I do say so myself) with photos belonging to my mother and father in law, for $30. Their parents, cousins, grandmothers. Many faces that are no longer here.

I made paperback copies for $10 apiece. Fairly easy to do and it will be a showstopper.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Driving Kids Crazy 101

So, I have this thing about the supermarket parking lot being too much like an Indy car race. I insist that the kids keep one hand on the cart while I'm walking to the car because people are whipping around in every direction. I frown on those needless trips to the E.R. (Suzy doesn't like to go there on her day off)

Okay, my kid is 12 now and she probably doesn't NEED to do this.

Today when she sort of rolled her eyes at me I started rapping (yes, rapping) "Put your hand, put your hand on the cart." The next line was pretty funny but of course since I'm senile I've forgotten it now. Dan got into it with part of the Scranton rap song.

She's no slouch. She never missed a step, just started talking aloud. "So, I'm adopted. At least I know for sure now. I wonder where my real family lives."

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Caroling, Caroling we will go

... with 30 children from an elementary school choir? Aaaieeeee.

Dear Mommies that strolled along behind the pack and chatted away, while I was sprinting ahead, trying to keep your kids from running out into traffic: thanks bunches.

Smooches,
Carly

Ooops

Oops #1 - Was heading over to school, waiting for the car ahead of me to turn at a traffic light, onto main street. Tapped on horn because It Isn't Going to Get Any Greener, Pal. Realized immediately that I was right behind our town's shiny new, unmarked white police car. Realized next that an ambulance is racing down the main street, toward us, and I didn't hear the sirens because my Sirius radio's turned up too high. Grin sheepishly at Officer McPleaseDon'tTicketMe, as he flashes me a peace sign out his window. Yeah, um... Hi. Doing a great job there buddy - keep at it.

Oops #2 - crack small joke about band to a teacher I know and realize I should shut up, because my kids are in the band and all that. Actually the joke was about the co-instructor who sits in the middle of the band and pretends he's one of the kids, but whatever. Open mouth, insert sneaker. (Glare at infamously smartalec boy who seems to have an interest in my daughter. Don't even think about it, you little twit. I'll kill ya - - - and yes JV before you say it, I know when she is 17 she probably WILL date him. Thanks a bunch.)

Ooops #3 -
Traveling over narrow bridge to take a shortcut home - move over slightly because A BUS IS COMING AT ME... aaaaaa! Remember that The Bridge Really Is Wide Enough just as I hear this heart-sinking scrrrrrrrraping sound. It's minor. I can deny, deny, deny that I have any idea where that scrape came from. Dork.


PS: There is surely a special place in the next life for teachers who teach elementary school students BAND. To be able to patiently keep time, and not wince at the stray notes, that is a talent and a gift.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Cookies of the day







These cookies are sooooo good (if you make them with unsalted butter!!) - my brother in law asks for them regularly every Christmas when we decorate our trees.

By the way, if you double the recipe add one more teaspoon of scotch for the mix, and one for the baker....

Survivin'

Arrrgh.

I just realized I forgot that Survivor wrapped up last night. Oh well.

It was the end of a REALLY long day and I just didn't make it.

It started at church where I was the ONLY alto. Uh oh. And our first song had - ta dah- an alto solo. But of course. So I begged a couple of sopranos to help me. But it set the tone for the rest of the day... scramble.

I had to buy more gifts so I headed out - stopped by my Mom's to give her the presents Suzy and I bought for my kids (thank YOU Suzy for braving the mall on saturday to buy clothes with them, that I know will FIT and they LIKE !!) . Mom made a uniform for my daughter's American Girl doll, just like what my daughter wears to school. It looks adorable.

I hit Target and somehow fell into a time void. I was there quite a while but got the other stuff on my list, including a snowboard for my crazy little man (he of the newly aquired shirt "remember my name, so you can tell the doctor" picturing a 'boarder)

Same stop off at my mother in law, to give HER the gifts we got for my kids. Hmm. How IS she going to wrap a snowboard? Uh oh. Better go get a big gift bag for her.

Then I had bills to write (ugh) and PTA stuff to do and ...where did the evening go? I know things are crazy when I'm checking my mail in the morning before work and have 3 or 4 new things....

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Too much to dough

It's cookie day... I have (unsalted) butter softening all over the place, and about 15 lbs of flour, along with nuts, sprinkles, you name it. I'm going to bake all afternoon and evening. Or until I fall down.

(What I really really want to do is sit and watch the entire DVD of the British version of the Office, whilst drinking a nice glass of wine.)

I am listening to A Dave Brubeck Christmas (all piano...) and I have my yankee candle going (mistletoe).

The new mixer is being put to work. I'm getting dough all over myself trying to scrape down the sides because then the paddle is in the way.... anyway. Just something to get used to.

Hope you're in better shape with your Christmas preparations than I am! I still have a little bit of shopping AND all of my wrapping to do.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Bend your ear this way

So I was talking to Suzy today and I mentioned that I told the kids they could get me a few things and I mumbled what they were - a cranberry Yankee candle, some bath & body works stuff, and a page a day calendar. I can't remember exactly how I phrased it but suddenly Suzy exclaimed "What??!!"

When I repeated myself she started laughing and told me "I thought you asked for a f-cking P. Diddy calendar. I was going to say, WHO ARE YOU?"


***

I was going to buy the PERFECT gift for my nephew this year. I saw a Polish Christmas Carols karaoke CD in one of my many catalogs. Our part of the family isn't Polish, but his Mom is, so he's really into that and he loves to sing and has a K machine, blah blah blah...

The damn thing is sold out. I procrastinated too long. Then I found it on another website and can't seem to ORDER it on the website. I tried their 1-800 number and it's answered by short silence, then the beep of an answering machine.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Underwood

I don't think I could bring myself to wear this but my father had one of these and probably still does.

How I could remember that it was an Underwood, when I can't remember what I did last Friday at work, is as baffling to me as how I could remember all of the Yaz lyrics after (sigh) about 25 years.

(PS, Suzy, I want it someday, but will share)

Yazoo

So Grace over at Have You Met Me mentioned Yaz and it reminded me about some songs I loved in college.

I downloaded my four or five favorites to my ipod (take the four or five most popular, like Only You and Don't Go, but make sure you get Midnight) and was dancing around making an ass of myself while I cleaned up our hovel, um, house.

My daughter looked at me with THAT look and said "what ARE you listening to?" and I replied "Yaz."

The look on her face was hilarious. In a split second I connected the dots, and sheepishly said "No, not the birth control... the band...when I was in college... nevermind" She proceeded to give me an on-the-spot theory about the BCP's being invented by a scientist my age and maybe it was HIS favorite band too. Who knows? That's my babygirl.

Of course, she also pointed out to me (between recorded episodes of Rob and Big, while we were sick and watching tv together the other day - I love Meaty)

... that I am older than the Grinch.


PS: holy crap... is electropop an early precursor to techno? Poly?

Fuzz Navidad

Dear Guy I Barely Know who sat near me at our big office division's Christmas luncheon today:

Listen. You seem harmless enough, as programmers go. Nerdy introverts, I can deal with.

But when I caught sight of your chest hair PUFFING out of the v-neck of your polo shirt, it ruined a really nice prime rib meal* for me. It's one thing if a few stray hairs poke out of there, but really... what you have going on looks like a clog I might pull out of my vacuum if I had 4 persian cats. If you were eye candy I might be singing an entirely different tune. The fact that it's WHITE hair because you are 10 or more years older than me only gives me additional dry heaves. For a moment I wondered if you have a pet sugar glider.

I swear to you, GIBK, start buttoning that polo shirt at least part way, or I will leap over the table at you with my corporate issue stapler and fix the problem once and for all.

Happy Holidays,
Carly


(*This was doubly distressing for me because I have not eaten a decent meal in 3 or 4 days due to my little karma issue. No, I didn't get sick at either party, the one I ran saturday or the one I attended today. But I've been sick for almost every moment inbetween. One of those "dear sweet lord please take me now and end this" things. )

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Suzy Got Her Sparkle Back


Suzy has always wanted to skate at Rockefeller Plaza - this year she finally did it!

Just as background, she skated competitively while she was in high school. Meaning every year I was dragged, er, I got to go to on vacation in Lake Placid in the stark, bleak deadness of January winter. (I hate winter. Have I mentioned that? and back then, some 15-20 years ago, it was always FREEEEEZING up there and I was up to my ass in snow every time. Bleahhh.) She even toured with Disney on Ice in the chorus line for a while. (We saw that show several times because they passed through our town. It was a complete blast but I had Peter Pan songs stuck in my head for a week. We're following the leader, the leader, the leader....)

Anyway, this past weekend she took a train to NYC with a couple of friends and checked this adventure off her wish list. She has not been looking forward to this Christmas since she's going to be working ten billion hours and all, so this was just what she needed.

She said the rink is about 1/3 the size of a typical rink. She waited an hour but then was able to skate for about two and a half hours and absolutely had a blast. The weather was perfect - it was in the 50's there this weekend.

Sorry guys, no little skating dress... and you can't see her REAL smile here, because I'm clinging to my delusion that this blog is somewhat anonymous still, but she was grinning from ear to ear. Yay, Suzy!!!

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Post Secret

If you've never read Post Secret, now is a great time to start. Buy a book and help Frank keep the site up and running Ad-free.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Karma hath smiteth me

... NOW it's my kid.

but at least he barfed (repeatedly) in the comfort of our own home, without 500 witnesses. We have to take these victories where we find them.

I'm off to the washing machine... any takers on a bet that I will barf in the middle of my Important Gathering tonight? It would be almost poetic, huh? And messy and embarrassingly inopportune.

Stay tuned.

In the meantime, I suggest this game.

Friday, December 08, 2006

White Christmas

I'm busy making a cake and counting tickets and talking to newspaper reporters. (No, I didn't get arrested again, and so there will be no file baked into the cake... I am running a social function tomorrow and will be OVERJOYED when it's over.)

In the meantime you can watch this. It's only semi amusing until about the middle, but then it's hilarious. Just watch the white reindeer.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Good times

selling raffle tickets at school Christmas concert: (earned) $200

bottle of water: $1

watching a 1st grader* throw up RIGHT NEXT TO the piano player: priceless



*not my kid !!!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Oh no, she didn't

Rachel Ray has a Christmas CD out??? No, she's not singing.... but she did include Dominick The Donkey, by Lou Monte.

(Sigh. Here we go again, my google friends... so here are the Dominic The Donkey Lyrics. )

At least my kids haven't sung it to me yet this year.

howdy

Crazy times my friends... crazy busy and running in 3 ways at once.

  • shopping - 2/3 done
  • cards - ditto
  • cookies - not a crumb MADE yet, but the ingredients are in my cupboard... I'm adding a new one, with dried cherries and oatmeal (and tiny chocolate chips, perhaps)
  • school obligations a plenty this week, then things simmer down to a dull 75 mph or so

PS - Marco - guess what I am doing New Year's Eve? My best friend and I are taking our kids BOWLING from 4-6 pm and then we're all hanging at her house (with the fireplace and big screen tv, and plenty of takeout food, natch). Me, bowling. You heard it here first

;-)

Monday, December 04, 2006

I got your HO HO HO right here...

So, I never heard of Rick Reilly, but this is cool. (I go for semi-geeks...not jocks... sorry. So who is he, really? I mean I get that he has a column now, but... background??)

I am about 2/3 done with my Christmas cards. Yes, I put the envelopes through my printer. SO what? I have about 10 left to do.

I am also about 2/3 finished with my Christmas shopping, thanks to a new family agreement to buy just for the kids. (I'm cheating a little but not much. I'm making photo books on Snapfish.com for some of the grownups with old old family pictures. Check it out. ) The only problem is that I end up buying most of my family's gifts for my kids, but that's a relatively minor problem for me, control freak extraordinaire.

I bought my son the cooooolest toy ever. THIS is going to freak him right out. (Go ahead, go look. I'll wait. If you have lots of time, read the snarky comments. Yes, you, Poly.) Anyway, I bought him the percussion tubes because they're cheaper AND a little cooler.

Next job... deciding what cookies to make. Definitely Oatmeal Scotchies but I haven't decided what else. (Yes, they really do have scotch in them, plus white chips and butterscotch chips... my family demands them every year; they must be available to consume the day we decorate the trees. YES, trees, plural. I'm not really in the mood to talk about why our small home requires TWO trees.)

I like my treadmill, but the klutz key is starting to piss me off. I bump it by mistake with my hand, snag the string, WHAM, the whole program is reset to zero. Can't you just PAUSE? Oy. Otherwise, loving the treadmill. (I sneak out there when I get a phone call - yesterday Suzy thought I was WAY more upset about a problem than I actually was - I had to explain that I was on the treadmill and THAT's why I was hyperventilating. Then I slowed the speed down a little.)

Is it January yet?

Saturday, December 02, 2006

You'll put yer eye out, kid

My son inadvertently helped me with today's entry by showing me this Rocket Fishing Rod.

Um, yeah.

Sure baby, Mommy will buy you a GUN that shoots A FISHHOOK. Uh huh.

This catalog has everything, including this tshirt: (buy here )


Friday, December 01, 2006

Incentive

I got a brand new treadmill. I know the novelty will wear off, so I have a plan. It involves rigging up some sort of shelf to hold my laptop, not so that I can surf, but so that I can watch my (complete collection of) Sex and the City DVD's while I work out.

Once I get through all of those, I may just HAVE to reward myself by purchasing the boxed set of all of the Friends episodes. Except running + laughing = Carly falling on her ass, so I'll have to make sure I wear the Dorks-R-Us Safety Clip (if you fall on your ass, it pulls a magnetic piece off the dashboard and instantly stops the treadmill. I know. But I might have to wear it anyway.)

Since my son is dying to get on the treadmill I needed to convince him that it is NOT a toy. I did this by turning it on, setting it to 10 MPH, and dropping a sneaker on it. WHAM! The sneaker shot off and hit a nearby wall. My son doubled over with laughter of course, but I emphasized that if the sneaker was his head, it wouldn't be so funny, now, would it?

Point made. I hope.

If this works out really well (pun intended) there may be before and after pictures. Just maybe. I have one particularly horrifying picture of me from Ocean City that would be an ideal "before." Egads. Maybe I need to tape that to my snooze button so that I have to look at it before I roll over and say "I'm too tired to work out this morning."

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Catalogs again

Today's catalog offering is the Danbury Mint. NOT the Franklin Mint. No sireee. Ok, I know this might be getting stale, but they keep coming!!

Which brings me to today's first item. I mean, really, how often do you have a chance to purchase the Buck of a Lifetime? I mean, yes, Nick Bibby is extraordinary (but how often did he get beaten up in highschool, with that name?)

I would be remiss not to draw your attention to the stained glass dog clocks. I had a Sheltie when I was little, so I showed you this, but there are others, fear not. This clock features four interchangeable seasonal scenes, AND it LIGHTS, people! I almost died when I realized it was $150. Oh sure, they pretty it up at $149.75 but come on. We're too smart for that.

I didn't have to go very far into the catalog to find a men's Dallas Cowboy's bracelet. (It's like this only it has a section with a gold Cowboys' star, which yours truly actually stood on years ago. The one on the center of their field, yes I did. Ok, anyway.) Gentlemen. Guys... Jackets, that's ok. Team jerseys are awesome, especially when your girlfriend gets to borrow it to sleep in. Whatever. But a bracelet? (It's only 8" so if it actually fits you, count on getting your ass kicked if you wear it. Wrap the short side of a regular sized piece of paper around your wrist and see what I mean. It's so wimpy they don't even sell it online!) Next!

This is ugly and the Peanuts were not Irish, so it makes no sense. Well, maybe Peppermint Patty was - but this does have the golden pot that my coworker Greg always talks about. (He who doth mangle many a common quotation.) There are other Peanuts things that are cuter, if you like that kind of thing. (Lower middle class, slightly disfunctional and VERY unsupervised children stranded in childhood, never aging. They must be relatively broke, like I was growing up, because they never seem to have Great World Traveling Adventures. Where ARE their parents??? But at least we never had to endure A Very Special Peanuts episode where Charlie Brown got caught skipping school with a joint in his pocket.)

You can get several disconcerting images of Pope John Paul II. I'd end this paragraph with the remark "moneygrubbing bastards" but you might be confused about my intent. Did they get permission to put a picture of my dead Pope on a plate?

Truly this is a SLOW website. I'd show you the John Deere and Betty Boop products, but my time is just about up. Fun with M & M's. Disney Collectibles. Creepy lifelike dolls - it's all here! Oh, and the Pilsbury amputee Doughboy... oooh hoooo!

thanks for shopping with me!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

A tiny seashell

Sometimes, when you are a tiny baby in intensive care, you are baptised the night before you have surgery.

If you are baptised in the NICU, your nurse will have a small, delicate scalloped seashell ready for the service.

A stern older chaplain will pour sterile water over your little head, using the seashell.

The chaplain will politely request that the nurses nearby recite the Lord's prayer.

There will be no party, no cake or gifts, no special white outfit. Your parents might not even be there.

But sometimes, there will be a volunteer photographer.

The photographer's heart will break just a tiny bit as the last drop of holy water lingers on your temple, and then drips down onto your bedding.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Google This, part 5

It's time once again for "Great Google! How did you find my blog from THAT search?"
Here are some of the unusual paths that have lead you, my darling readers, right to my blog.

*Dominic the Donkey and Feifel are back, of course. (Not together. Although just writing that, I think about the naughty version of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Not that I've ever seen it.)

(Please note: it's Feivel, dammit. Now go away. And don't comment saying that if I didn't mention it you wouldn't come to this blog, because someone searched Last. Week. and found my blog. I have NEVER written about Feivel except to wonder who he is and why people find my blog.)

As for Dominic, I never did figure out who put the lyrics on my blog, (Johnny? Poly? Tay?) but I am here to help, so here they are: Dominic The Donkey Lyrics. Jiggity jig. Word.

*Diane Sawyer clevage pics -- OK, there are soooo many people who/whom I ...oh never mind.

*do you now iny kid turkey songs? (sic) -- aren't kids goats? No, eye due knot.

*display photos funeral wake ...um, I hate the idea of taking a photo of someone in their coffin. Is that what this is about? Creeeeepy.

*shamus I drank the wine and threw up --I laughed at this one, because it sounds like a note I almost wrote to him about Julie's latest party, but whatever... drink lots of water starting at midnight, and you'll be greatful in the morning. Words to live by.

*black cloud airplane holter daniel mom dad cook bag fast up sky -- wordy, and 128 results... why is my blog first? There's a whole "Lost" vibe to this one. Except for the cook bag. Which brings me to my next searc...

*how to sew earbags (this must mean that people actually DO wear them -eeek)

*de la la la la la la paper -- uh, ok.

*Herbie the Dentist song. Um, is it Hermie? I think I dissed Herbie last week. It's Hermie. Which of course is from Rudolph.

So, "Why am I such a misfit?" No one knows.

But google loves me, this I know. Yes, google loves me - the searchers tell me so.

Birthday of the day

Happy Birthday to Bill Nye the Science Guy.

Bill! Bill! Bill! Bill!

Yeah, I love him.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Catalogues, part two

As I have mentioned I am being buried alive in catalogs this holiday season. Today's catalog is from The Smithsonian.

This pearl necklace is pretty, and I would buy it for someone, but I honestly could make it for half the price. If even that much.

I am not sure why someone would buy a miniature boudoir. Seriously - if you have $450 to spend on a full set of teeny tiny bedroom furniture isn't even the right scale for Barbie to get some action, just use that money to pay my damn car payment this month. (It's not even that much - I will let you take me to dinner.)

There were a lot of penguins in this catalog. The come off as downright adorable when compared to this Buddha wall sculpture. It would NOT work in my family room. Just saying.

For the cat lover in your life, I have these beauties. (I am NOT a cat person. They're hideous. I had a clock just like this when I was little. Eeesh. Maybe that's why I'm not a cat person.)

Actually, I like this shawl. But I'm not buying it. It doesn't really go with my jeans/sneakers business casual look. Pretty though. So is this dragonfly umbrella which I actually like.

This warrior is what I'm getting for Johnny V. Just because. Well, ok, because it looks like him.

Since I'm placing an order, I'll get this panda becuase I have a friend who loves them (...you know who you are - act surprised, 'k ???)

I need to buy this Conquistador Stallion Bust. I just do. Shamus, do you like it?

You can get crabs anywhere nowadays. Be careful.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

A mullet is more than a hairdo

Who knew a mullet was a FISH? Oh, the things I learn from my online friends.

(You just had to be there. Apparently I *am* a damn yankee. Haha! Well, butter my biscuits.)




Yaaaaaaay! Quality family time!

In honor of the impending doom, er, holiday, I propose a game.

Let's talk turkey. You *KNOW* that someone you'll dine with over the next few days is a turkey. Here are some examples of what I mean:

  • That uncle who hugs you a little too close... yechhh. Bonus points for boys.
  • That sibling-in-law who pulls your spouse aside to say "you still owe us $$ for xx" when didn't know we owed money for xx in the first place, because we offered to pay our share initially and sibling said no, no, no, I don't want your money.
  • The relative who campaigns fiercely that the holiday MUST be spent together ON THE EXACT DATE and then is 2 hours late to your gathering because they're trying to be in 12 places at once.... because they do that with EVERY branch of their family.
  • The relative who plays "my surgery is better than your surgery." Hah! That one will be fun at my family table -- this year both of my siblings had surgery - and so did I. (For the record, I think mine loses.)

Tell me about it. Who was the biggest turkey at your table this year?

Special bonus points will be awarded for the following:

  • most bizzare/slutty/slovenly outfit (or, if you receive any such opinions from a family member on your OWN attire... double points... but too late for you Suzy, don't go breaking out that dress that Mom says makes your butt look like J. Lo's. Seriously. I still can't believe she said that.)
  • any family confrontation that ultimately involves law enforcement personnel.

Prizes will be awarded. No, really. They will.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Green Eggs and Carly

I am a moderately good cook, but I've had my share of mishaps in the kitchen.

When I was four, I fell while walking through the kitchen, over nothing more than my own two feet. I needed 3 stitches to mend my upper lip. One stitch let go. I needed plastic surgery a few years later to pretty up the scar a little bit. You can still see it if you look closely. Gimme a kiss - I'll show ya!

When I lived in my first apartment, I opened a jar of spaghetti sauce while yakking on the phone, used half, and then for some inexplicable reason put it back in the cupboard. Yummy fuzz was waiting for me the next time I made spaghetti! Of course, I was on the phone THEN too, and dumped it into my nice ground beef before I noticed the mold. D'oh.

I once browned some Rice A Roni in butter, per the package directions. When I say "browned" I mean "burned to a crisp." A spaz moment took over, and I dumped in the water that was waiting. Then I had a black, stickey, gooey wet mess. Nice.

When I was pregnant with my daughter I made some lasagna in disposable foil pans. Great idea. Not so great to bake one without a cookie sheet under it. When I took the pan out of the oven, it flexed and basically fell to the floor and exploded. Since we had carpeting in the kitchen, it was a torture exercise to clean up.

(The day I went into labor, I made this huuuuuuuuge dinner with meatloaf and about 5 side dishes. I can't look at meatloaf, to this very day.)

I bought a pair of knives a few years ago. I was saying something about "I won't cut myself" when of course I did. Badly. Twice. I gave the knives to my brother. I told him the knives had tasted blood, and now they wanted more. He cut himself. I don't know if he still uses them.

Another time I had a friend over. Set fire to the steak I was broiling. Oh yeah. It was up too high or something, and part of the fat had some tiny little flames on it. The rest was still good. But my friend dressed up my son in his Halloween fireman outfit and sent him out to ask me if dinner was ready.

Another time I cooked a pot of Kraft Mac n cheese for the kids. Then I broiled a steak. I managed not to set it on fire. But I took the big broiler pan out, (the kind that has a top, with slits in it, and a lower pan) and set it on the stove lid I had been using. The stove lid that, unfortunately, was still on "high". The grease that had dripped off the steak caught fire in the broiler pan. Now, THAT was more exciting... four inch high flames. We lucked out. While we were saying "oh shit, what are we supposed to sprinkle on this?" it put itself out.... not much grease in the pan. No new cabinets for me that day.

Somehow I think this would be a mini disaster. I'd flail that thing around, and then knock something flying. Or knock myself unconscious.

So, no, I'm not cooking this holiday. I prefer to make a Christmas roast, with a good Irish beer, some carrots and potatoes, and not think about 30 side dishes.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Don't forget to take all that shit outta the turkey before it goes in the oven. And for God's sake, don't deep fry it unless you watched Alton Brown's entire show on how to do that right.

Solitaire


Here... play this:

http://www.nbc.com/The_Office/justforfun/solitaire.shtml

because the Office won't be on this week. Sniffle.

And don't forget to fix your recording of Grey's, 10 minutes longer this week. Arrrgh.

3 Little details

Guess which news has me the most pleased?

1. America collectively finding that a tiny shred of our moral fiber still remains; we gave OJ the double middle finger. Not that I don't think for a minute, that SOMEONE somewhere has a copy of that book, and it will be sold for more than cheap toilet paper is actually worth.


2. Paris puking on a Las Vegas stage. Grey Goose Droppings, as Suzy put it. Yes, Paris apparently watched Jay-Z and drank through his entire show, then took the stage to lipsynch her crappy songs and made a fool of herself once again.... she is just gross beyond compare.


And by the way, read the whole page I linked there. Let's chat about how Will Smith is a jackass. I truly believe no one should home school, unless you are a certified teacher and you live on Bora Bora with no access to real schools. It's pure arrogance to say "I don't want my child to be in a formal school setting because yada yada yada" ....get over yourself.

As a parent of a seemingly "normal" kid who was nevertheless diagnosed as learning disabled, I know the frustration I went through... and I graduated magna cum laude from college, but NOT with a teaching degree... and I have a completely different learning style, and so I was unable to help my child be as successful as she is THIS year, with a consultant teacher's help... a real teacher. Last year... hours of time spent together working on her homework at home. Tears, discouragement and self image issues.... "I'm not very smart"... etc. This year, with the proper tutuoring, she is taking unmodified tests and still shaking out an 85 average. AND she's finishing her homework by 3:30 daily.

Moving on,

3. Suzy will be switching to days in January!!! Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay! No more trying to figure out what she means when she asks me about "tonight" (because it can mean tonight tonight while she's working, or sometimes it can actually mean tomorrow daytime after she works all night... I get so confused.) In general she will be around quite a bit more to get me into trouble at various country music concerts. Um, I mean, to bond, and knit, and stuff.


Did you pick #3? Ding, ding, ding!!! You're a winner!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Problem solvers

I am getting SO tired of the mailman folding my mail in half and shoving five or six catalogs into my small, so-old-it's-not-even-retro mailbox. I can never pry all of it out with one hand, and I am always carrying keys, my briefcase, purse, etc...

I hate getting a billion catalogs that I neither want nor order from. A VERY annoying catalog came today. The name of the company is "problem solvers". Hmmph. I looked all through it and I did not find a maid, self-running washing machine, a magic ATM, or even a cute AND legal age yardboy; nor can I find an elf who can make my kids have straight teeth at no cost to yours truly. (Does Santa still have that little twit Herbie the Dentist locked up somewhere at the North Pole making toys? Really, my kids both have crappy teeth. Send ol' Herbie down thisaway. )

As if I would order any of this:

A tree stand that supposedly you just "drop the tree into the powerful steel grips" and yet the "grips release with a simple twist." Yeah right. I can imagine a crash the first time you try to "drop" in a tree, then quite a bit of swearing trying to get it back out. And really, who wants to take a half dead Christmas tree and spin it a 3/4 turn in the middle of their living room? Needles EVERYWHERE. Plus in July when you're wandering around the attic looking for extra beach towels and you step in that thing, it's gonna be a scene Chevy Chase would have been proud to do.

These champagne glasses can apparently not be put down. Anywhere. They will dribble champagne all over. It's like a shot glass on a really long pointy stick. Who would buy them??? Again, making problems, not solving.

Then there is the nut roaster - yeah, that's really what it's called. So you NEED a special pan to roast nuts? Who eats that many roasted nuts? If the nuts are sticky won't this pan be even harder to clean? I'd throw the damn thing away after one use. That's a problem.

Then there's the Earbags. The name is even damn trademarked. So it's not bad enough your kid will get his ass kicked for wearing these things, but their stupid name is trademarked. Someone paid money so that no one else could invent something and call it Earbags.

These are about the only thing in the catalog I'd actually buy if they weren't $40. I'll just duct tape some cheap little flashlights to the bottoms of the Victoria's Secret slippers Suzy got me. MmmmOK? (By the way right now if you buy a pair of Oh-so-Cute and yet still very warm flannel PJ's right now from Vickie's, the matching slippers are free if you use the discount code "slipper" when ordering. Tell 'em Carly sent you.)

Lastly, we have this monstrosity. Wake to your favorite farm animal. So help me, if I heard a cow noise coming from my nightstand at 5:30 in the morning, I would shit my pants, and that is just NOT how you want to start your mornings.

Just remember, if you're buying something for me this Christmas, I already have enough problems. Buy me a shiny new steel blue metallic Jeep Compass*. Don't forget to activate the built-in Sirius radio.

*Because, "Silly boys, Jeeps are for girls."

Fabulous


It was FUN, really, watching the oral surgeon rip these out of my kid's jaws... the screaming, the blood. I swear there was another one but I didn't find it in the little tooth fairy containers. WTF knows.

Can't someone PLEASE send me away for a spa weekend?

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Yoko Effing Ono is 73

I am a little off kilter these days. Not sure why.

For one thing, I am crazy busy. I sang a solo at church on Sunday that I honestly and truly thought I sucked badly at. (We sing the psalm and response and the alleluia and a short verse before the gospel, and each week someone gets a turn at it)

It sounded great at home in front of my piano. But therein lies the problem - my piano is out of tune. When it came time to sing at mass Stanley said "are you ready?" and I said "yes" and he repeated "are you ready?" twice before he actually played my two bars... which is our usual routine, and always makes me laugh and relax. But then a giant fist of karma or something reached out of thin air and tightened around my windpipe. My voice felt thin and flat. I can usually work around this feeling (of panic...) by remembering that the closer I get to the microphone, the less I have to worry about putting out very much volume. So I tried to make it sound as pleasant as I could, but I was just NOT happy with this one.

Eh. No one really listens down there anyway.

So then I had a PTO meeting, which was fun, because I am getting used to random unfounded complaints and people yelling at me, so there were one or two things that make me just look at myself and laugh. (You know, that sensation that you're watching something happen to yourself? That.) No one listens to me THERE either.

Then LAST night I went to the NICU. I took pictures of teeeeny tiny little babies for their moms to use as part of the scrapbooking program. They are SO adorable. The babies, not necessarily their moms. Heh. No, I'm kidding!!

Suzy arrived for her shift while I was there. It was fun to hang out and watch her, which I was able to do since I'm cleared as a volunteer for that unit. All of the proper channels, and I never actually touch the bambinos myself. She talks to the babies, and if she's doing something like wash their face or dress them, she answers herself in "their" little voice. (Think high pitched, cartoonish, feisty character voices)

Today... nothing. I have NO PLACE TO GO TONIGHT. Yeeehaw.

There are only 46 days left in this year. I have SO much stuff to do in those 46 days. Ick. I'd better get to it. Thanks for the music suggestions and birthday wishes, everyone!!

Monday, November 13, 2006

The booby prize

... is my 9 year old son's latest favorite expression to laugh hysterically at, and repeat over and over.

If only I could hang out with HIM all day, instead of certain persons at my paying job... sigh. He's far more amusing.

I did order myself a shiny new iPod nano today... blue, though, not red. I used the money I earned on the necklace I made. (Plus my birthday money...)

So please, I ask you, comment with 3 songs you think I need to download to my new blue iPod. Title, artist, and warn me if it's techno (:::wink:::)

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Quick notes

I'm going to sew this for Suzy because she's working eleventy bajillion hours this Christmas.



This Thursday I get to take my kid to the dental surgeon to yank out more of her unwilling babyteeth. Good times, something to look forward to.

My butt hurts... no, I did not buy an iGallop... but I did download a podcast by Robert Ullrey based on the Couch to 5K in 12 weeks, or a book named something like that. Robert talked me through a 30 minute workout that was (1 minute running, 90 seconds walking fast) x 8 and I have to say

it

almost

killed

me.


And not just because he used techno either. Haha.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Not that type o' cowgirl...

I am so gettting this ...not... but I do want my own treadmill.

The running thing is going fairly well considering this week I ate out every day for various meetings & celebrations... with choir, and my NICU volunteering leaving no time for running in the evenings... eeeesh. My coworkers took me to The Cheesecake Factory, which has ridiculously good food but there were about 3,000 anchovies in my caesar salad. Nevertheless... great food.

A guy from work made a remark that my jeans looked baggy. Wheeee! (I thanked him and then thought "Wait... did I just thank someone for looking at my butt?" How pathetic. I am so clueless sometimes.)

I hope to come up with enough funds from my relatives via birthday cards, to order my shiny new iPod this weekend. (So get ready, Poly!) It will probably be red, but it will DEFINITELY never have any songs from High School Musical or Hillary Duff on it.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Anyway...Happy Birthday to Myself

These two things pretty much sum up my mood these days.... the meaning of life is what you make it... don't be afraid to dream.



You can spend your whole life building
something from nothing
One storm can come and blow it all away
Build it anyway
You can chase a dream
that seems so out of reach
and you know it might not ever come your way,
but dream it anyway

God is great, but sometimes life ain’t good,
and when I pray..it don’t always turn out like I think it should…
but I do it anyway, I do it anyway

This world’s gone crazy and it’s hard to believe
that tomorrow will be better than today,
believe it anyway

You can love someone with all your heart,
for all the right reasons,
and in a moment they can choose to walk away,
love ‘em anyway

You can pour your soul out singing a song you believe in,
that tomorrow they’ll forget you ever sang,
sing it anyway….yeah sing it anyway…..yeah

yeah I’ll sing, I’ll dream, I’ll love… anyway

~ as sung by Martina McBride

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

It was fun while it lasted

Today is my last day of being 40. Somehow that depresses me more than the last day of 39. Not sure why. (Wait, I know, ...no big huge party this weekend.)

My friend Chris Callaghan lost his election, of course (the words "sacrificial lamb" have been bandied about at various times during his campaign). His concession speech was vintage Chris - jokes like "Well, I guess my wife is going to have to continue to drive herself around." The thing that annoys me is that he was making jokes the entire time, and yet the Times Useless showed a photo of him looking incredibly downcast. Hello! Tell the actual story... not the one you want to portray (of a befuddled, downcast, losing candidate....)

But if you voted, that's GOOD. The process works. Not always 100% smoothly...(WTF, why is it so hard to have electronic voting machines that work right, when I can buy a corndog and a pepsi damn near anywhere in the country with a tiny piece of plastic...)

If you didn't vote, get your act together and vote next year. When I'm 41. :::sulk::::

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

VOTE!

Today I will vote (I always do).

I will vote for Chris Callaghan because I think Hevesi is a complete crook who needs to GO. If you are in NY state, join me in voting for an honest man who IS qualified and has been endorsed by a number of the major newspapers in the state. He's got a shot... let's make it happen!

Monday, November 06, 2006

SpongeCarly SodaPants

Little miss Carly went out to lunch today. I went over to Central Ave and went to the supermarket. Where the made-fresh-that-day Sushi section USED to be, there was other stuff. Not sushi.

Strike one. When I want sushi, and can't have it, pouting occurs.

Walked across the parking lot to a bagel place. Mr. Not As Funny As He Thinks Manager made his usual jokes. (He's a nice enough person, but the 20th time that someone tells you it's fifty dollars for a buttered bagel and a soda....) Okay, so I have no sense of humor when you are delaying my lunch. Strike two.

I walked back to my car with a bag containing my salad and my bagel. In my other hand I had a soda - in a paper cup, not styrofoam, and I must have squeezed it or bumped it somehow when I was setting it into my cupholder.

All I know is that it exploded. The top came off and ice and soda gushed everywhere in a black, carbonated, icecube-laden waterfall. All over me, on my sweater and my jeans. All over the leather seat of my car. All over the cupholder and the stick shift.

All over my Sirius radio.

My radio that I *JUST* replaced.

I watched, frozen for one split second while I waited for sparks. (The radio was on because it has this pause feature that will let you get out of the car to run a quick errand, get back in the car and keep listening to whatever song was playing when you left.)

Impressive. The little sucker seems watertight. Not only did it not short out, turn off, or explode my car via some freak chain reaction, it retained the exact song I had been listening to and everything.

This still left the problem of soda everywhere.

(Game forfeited...due to unsportsmanlike conduct and excessive FOUL language....)

With plenty of cussing I cleaned up what I could using napkins and the blanket I keep in the back for my kids (recall... leather seats... whiny cold children...)

On the plus side, when I was trying to take the radio off the spot where I'd anchored it with velcro, it lifted up the whole piece of plastic around the stick shift. So, I could clean it with my armorall wipes. You would not believe how gross that was. Sticky soda and crumbs everywhere.

The obvious thing to do would be to mount the radio differently. Let me tell you, the suction cup device seems pretty useless to me. So I'm left with velcro tape, and not quite having the right flat surface close enough to me so that I can glance at the radio quickly and hit the desired button while I'm driving. Very frustrating.

So, I cleaned it up, and went back to work with soda all over my hip and upper leg. I'm sure it was OBVIOUSLY wet... because it was cold, damp, and just generally nasty. Fun times.

Soda's bad for me anyway. I really need to give it up.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Crop You, Honey

I went to a lovely retreat this weekend with Suzy. She spoiled me with cute Pink flannel pajamas from Victoria's as an early birthday gift. And they fit! Wheeeeee! I used to not be able to fit their stuff.

It was a scrapbook gathering, so we brought tons of stuff and only worked on 1/3 of it. Such is the habit of a scrapbooker. (I stayed up until 1 a.m. and woke up around 5, talked with Suzy for an hour, and then got back to my table around 7....) Suzy made some ADORABLE things with some of the pictures from my trip to Ocean city. I may have to scan some and fuzz out the kids' faces so other scrapbookers can steal (yes, I'm looking at you, B.)

The lady in charge of the event insisted on playing TECHNO, and did so at HIGH volume, which is sooo conducive to relaxing and being artistic. Gaaaah! I ended up using my headphones and portable cd player (yeah, daughter would NOT let me take the iPod, sniffle) after InCharge actually TOOK OFF the cd we were playing, in mid song (Suzy took it up there when the cd player had been silent about 20 minutes) and InCharge said directly to me that it made her want to kill herself. I swear, that's what she said.

Rude, much? I wanted to say, (fully channeling Poly) but we can listen to a technosong with the same two phrases repeated 10,000 times without slitting OUR wrists, so what's the deal? It was Tim "my albums all go platinum" McGraw....wench. It was obvious she just didn't like ANY country music since she did the same thing with another completely different country artist a while later (after we had listened patiently to two more techno CD's. Gritting our teeth politely the entire time.*) Tolerance, darling. It's a gift. The classic part was that at the beginning of the "crop" she had said "remember, if you don't like a song, in four minutes it will be over." Poly would label this woman "entitled".

*However, I did get a hilarious lesson in how to dance "techno" from Suzy (screw in a lightbulb, mop the floor, rock the baby... mime various actions....)

Friday, November 03, 2006

Full moon musings

Do you make the rules in your home, or chafe at them?

In every marriage there seems to be one who would like to see the plates all facing the same way in the dishwasher, and one who can't remember which way they are supposed to face.

One who wonders "why can't Spouse remember this? It's so logical. Face the way that the streaming water is coming from, so they get clean". One who wonders why he/she has to hear about propelled water, when the whole damn thing fills up with soapy water anyway. (Or, can't remember what feels like rule #485. )

Or maybe it's not the dishes. It's the laundry, or the toys (being put away or children have to be children and the house will get mess) or the lunchboxes or cleaning the toilets. There are countless things that can be used as the foundation for the subtle ongoing tug of war that is status quo of some marriages.

Why do we have these arguments?

Are they struggles for control? The debates of two people who really should not be living as roommates because of completely different philosophies of life? Just simple stress?

Some people plan. They attack their goals and todos with vigor every morning. They abhor waste, be it time or money. Some people feel pulled in too many directions. They react, rather than driving the agenda of their lives forward. They're always trying to catch up.

I look at the moon, and I wonder. Am I the one who's crazy?

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Laugh of the day

My friend sent me a picture of Nolan. He's adorable! He's wearing a mint green knitted hat.

My daughter saw the picture and said "Wait... in Wisconsin, they give green hats to baby boys?"

It struck me as completely funny because she was just SO confused. Her next question, was, what color do girls get?

Yellow, I said with a straight face. But don't tell...it's a secret code.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Really

Go.

Home.

All you kids I've never seen before.... I am cheap and almost out of candy and I have no wine.

So please just go home.

PS: Could you not walk through my flowerbeds on your way home? Mmmmokay. Just go then.

Boo


Happy stinking Halloween - my kid threw up all over herself at school today. I hate this holiday!!

Monday, October 30, 2006

Boo who?

Today my 9 year old looked up various things in the dictionary like "jackass". Yes, you're hilarious, now take out the garbage.

My phone is currently not working, because of the high wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinds yesterday. I'm not inclined to get it fixed ::::shrug:::: Too many people bother me via my phone.

HOWEVER, my cable modem is cutting in and out, and THAT, my friends, is making me nuts. Because I can't listen to Sirius online if that happens. By the way, tomorrow channels 116 and 118 will have Halloween goodies on all day. Scary noises on one, vintage radiocasts on the latter. Maybe this will make me enjoy the "holiday". I doubt it.

I might be cranky in part because I stayed up late carving a freaking pumpkin. No triangle eyes, no sireee. I carved a witch stirring a pot of brew from which a ghost is rising up. Oh yeah. It's not pumpkin porn as Johnny Virgil is inclined to carve. Strictly "G" rated. (Is there a synonym for "boring" that starts with G? Note, to Johnny in particular, anyone who responds "GoingOn40" will be pummelled.)

My son bought a carving book with patterns, and the little tools. One of said tools snapped apart whilst I was carving. It was fun watching that skinny little hacksaw blade whizz by my nose. Really. (It seemed apropriate though, because at the time I was watching the Flavor of Love 2 Reunion and shoes and acrylic fingernails were flying in every direction...)

Photos of my artwork will be on display tomorrow. (Translation, I can't be bothered to go get it out of the garage right now to take a picture....)

PS: Damn. My phone just rang. It's fixed.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Panini for an eeny me

I am trying to eat just a little bit better now that I'm working out somewhat regularly. I hate "diet" meals usually, they're frozen and just bad in a number of ways. However, Lean Cuisine now has Paninis. The one I tried today was Southwest Style Chicken, with just enough bacon to taste, on Sourdough bread. Panini-licious, as Hungry-girl.com promised. (Under 300 calories too, but I cheated a little bit and microwaved it for the minimum time, then grilled it in a tiny bit of olive oil in a non stick pan to get it extra crispy without making the whole thing tough.)

Add an apple. Instant lunch. Fit into clothing. Mull over how boring my life truly is, that I'm blogging about my sandwich, when no one really cares what I ate for lunch. Or breakfast -wheee!

HI NOLAN!

Welcome to the world, Nolan Anthony... we are so deeeelighted that you have arrived!! I felt it required extensive coverage on the internet. I called CNN and tried to convince them to make it the lead story but the jerk I talked to went on and on about wars and elections and other junk like that. Hmmmph. Who cares about that junk? Hahahah. I hope your Mama feels better very soon. Smoooches to you, and your Mom & Dad!!!

* * *

Nolan's Mom is a longtime friend of Suzy's.... Suzy's other big news is that she got glasses... Mary Kate & Ashley glasses... she's a big girl now! (Actually her face is small and those frames were the right proportion... and since those two girls need a cheeseburger and some new clothes, it seemed like the right thing to do...)

Suzy and I are going away for a big exciting weekend next weekend. No, not to Vegas (damn). We'll be scrapbooking. (Yeah, I know, but I am looking forward to it. We thought about bringing Mike's hard lemonade and the complete edition of Sex and the City to amuse ourselves while we scrapbook. It's not entirely out of the question at this point...)

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

I'm only saying

...that it's 61 days until Christmas.

Not that I'm thinking about making cards and addressing all of those cards and making cookies and buying and wrapping presents and figuring out what to cook when I have my family over and how expensive funnnn all of that will be.

Nu-uh. Not me. Not thinking about that.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

We interrupt this program

Hevesi is a crook. (In a nutshell, he had one of OUR state of NY employees driving his wife around for quite some time. This was NOT supposed to be said employee's actual job. When this scandal hit the media, he came up with some bullshit number to "pay back" but won't show how he arrived at the figure)

I'll be voting for Chris Callaghan - I have known him for a number of years, and he is an HONEST (and quite funny) guy.

Here's a quote from his blog, on 10/21:

Chris drove from Buffalo to Albany and down to Greene County today and couldn’t find Alan Hevesi anywhere. He did find a number of voters who are overtaxed and struggling and, of course, chauffeur-less.

This is vintage Chris - the truth, delivered with a sly grin by a guy wearing an old-school bow tie.

Edit: The candidates will debate on Wednesday. This should be FUN.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Duff

I have made some cool cakes in my day, considering my lack of

  • a real chef's kitchen
  • any skills beyond what's taught in a basic Wilton III class at Michael's
  • the ability to deal with the point mid-way through the decorating when I'm sure that it will turn out to be the uuuuuuuuuuugliest cake I've ever made (this happens EVERY time)

My best one was either the cake with the marine logo (anchor, globe, rope, eagle, the works...) for a boss who had just come to our company(he bet me that I couldn't put it on a cake, so I freaking HAD TO...) , or the Bat Mizvah cake I made for the daughter of another boss. (Hey, do I know how to brownnose, or what? Let them eat cake. I will scan photos. Sometime. Perhaps. )

I live vicariously through Duff, who is the Ace of cakes. Thursday nights at 10:30. Yes, a busy time, but that's what TIVO is for dammit. Watch and learn how they make cool cakes.

PS: Duff... if you're ever in Albany and you want to hang out with a fourty .... um, never mind.

One fleeting moment

I was NOT an athletic child. I always preferred to be reading a book. I read just about everything Laura Ingalls wrote. We didn't get too many magazines, but we did always get the Reader's Digest. We also had plenty of the hardcover Reader's Digest hardcover editions (the ones that would condense four current books); I think those came from my grandmother. I read, I read and read and read. All of the long summer days that I spent alone, without having any other kids my age in my neighborhood, I read. Silence was pretty important in my house, since my father worked the midnight shift. Jumping about and shouting was not encouraged, in my house OR in the backyard while he was asleep. Most days he'd go to bed between two and three PM, and after I'd gone to bed, he'd get up for work. So I read.

At any rate, I never really found "my" sport. I did join the track team once in high school, to try to break away from being the uber-nerd that I was. The coach was merciful. I certainly wasn't a breakout star. She figured out that she could put me in with the racewalkers, and I actually came in second or third in a couple of races. I eked out enough points in her system that I earned a school letter.

There were bad moments, of course. The day that I raced against a girl that was so far superior to me, she actually lapped me during the race, right before she finished. The moment wouldn't have been complete without two of her friends, standing alongside that turn, saying to each other, "Look, look." Of course I noticed them laughing at me.

There was also one moment from another race that I can still recall, when I somehow found a surge of energy on the last turn to fight off another girl, who was trying to move past me. I actually called up that moment, when I was trying to deliver my daughter. Three hours of pushing was getting nowhere, and I really wanted to just quit and go home because who needs to have a baby anyway? Not me. Somehow I pulled up that reserve using that fragment of memory out of my past and finished the job, with the help of a REALLY effing scary looking pair of forceps. Holy crap. That's a story for another day.

Considering the fact that I overheard my parents making a bet as to whether or not I'd even finish out the track season, I was secretly fiercely proud of that letter. Even though I didn't get to the awards ceremony, I made sure I got the actual letter, and I still have it. I don't think they meant to be cruel. They just saw how out of character "track" was for me, and didn't know what to do with it. Some people like things to be familiar and stay the same and can't handle the idea of something changing. I was not an athlete, and me trying on sneakers was (to them) something like the Pope walking into McDonalds for a cheeseburger.

In my adult life I have not incorporated exercise successfully, since I pretty much have no sports skills. I can't play tennis, ski, or golf or bowl (in my mind, bowling is NOT a sport, since you can drink the entire time, but whatever). I have been trying to effect some small change in the last month or so. I started walking while I was out of work after my surgery, because I wanted to get some energy back and enjoy the Indian summer that we were having.

I walked on my neighbor's treadmill yesterday. (Actually, I managed to get there four times in the past week.) I secretly enjoy being alone in the garage; how strange is that? I guess part of the attraction is being uninterrupted in my thoughts, but another part is that no one's looking at me, thinking "she's clumsy" "she's not walking very fast" etc.

I had my daughter's iPod, and midway through my intervals workout, something happened. One tiny molecule of endorphins formed somewhere in my body. In the slower intervals of the program, I was dancing a cha-cha to Michael Buble' on the treadmill, walking sideways to Kelly Clarkson, and for a moment I actually HAD FUN. Doing something athletic. Me. When I realized, I looked around just a little bit, to make sure no one was watching, and "ohmygod" flashed through my mind. I was working out AND enjoying it.

I've gotta get my own iPod though. I mean, really - Michael Buble' ??

Friday, October 20, 2006

Happy Birthday!!

Happy birthay to John Krasinski, AKA Jim Halpert

Here is a short article about our favorite paper salesman.


PS: T.R. Knight... I still adore you (and your character George on Grey's Anatomy).
Gossip reporters need to get a life.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Dear Target

I will forgive you for taking literally half of my paycheck today because while I was roaming through your store I found...

1. Boots. Because my kids need boots, because it's apparently going to snow every day for the next six months. Dammit.

2. Camouflage pattern zip-up "footy" pajamas which my son fell in love with. He tried them on at home over shorts and a tshirt and when he was taking them off he was humming the James Bond theme and talking about it being like a flight suit. The boy scares me.

3. Costumes. Because "the day I hate the most all year" is coming. (Also known as "Go Home".)

and my favorite thing,

4. A DVD of the office (Not the American one, mind you, the BRITISH one, which makes Carly verrrrry happy and makes up for the Halloween thing.)

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

A walk in the park(-ing spaces)

Today it rained so I broke into my neighbor's house and used his treadmill. Well, ok, actually they gave me their garage door opener yesterday and said I could go over any time I want. I just wanted to sound like a badass. :::falls over laughing::::

I only used it for 25 minutes (because I worked late, and then went to mail the necklaces to my client, and found the shipping place was no longer there, and I only had a little while before it was time to pick up the kids, and THIS IS WHY I DON'T WORK OUT IN THE FIRST PLACE, PEOPLE, I CAN NOT CLONE MY DAMN SELF.)

I did manage to work up to a blazing speed of 3.4 mph. I tell ya - you could barely see my feet, they were moving so fast. (I was concentrating on not, NOT, falling off said treadmill because my neighbor seriously would never let me live it down. Ever. As long as I live. Neither would Suzy.) All in all I covered 1.25 glorious miles. I'm ready to run marathons. I just know it.

So. I am still down 11 lbs, two of which was probably my festering gallbladder, but hey - I hope to not "find" that weight again. I'd like to lose more, but a long running habit of of bon bons and wine in front of the tv is hard to undo. Know what I mean?

We went out to dinner (heh - I only ate half of mine, though) and my 9 year old was ENDLESSLY entertained by the sign saying "Parking in Rear". I'm telling you, he laughed and laughed and at one point was saying something about getting an engine up in there and he was making these bbbtht sounds and laughing and it was hysterical. However since I am a grownup I was trying to get him to shhhh and eat politely.

Good times!!!

PS: Marco, I am SO sorry I missed your birthday!!! I hope it was great!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Over and over

Ever get a song completely stuck in your head... well of course you have. You promise yourself you will Not Think About The Song and then twenty seconds later you are tapping your foot and muttering the words to yourself; you catch yourself and curse. Some call this affliction an earworm, which is really disgusting if you ask me.

Recently I was lucky enough to see the Villanova concert band in action. They were terrific. At one point they were doing a pep band version of an old song song called "Hey Baby" (no, not Gwen Stefani - think about the one used in the original "Dirty Dancing" if you're old enough... Hey-a-ayy, baaaaby, I wanna know-oh-oh if you'll be my girl.... ) The kids were clapping and singing and the tuba player danced around all of the little kids they were performing for and it was just a great, fun song.

Well, I taped it on my camera. It's 30 gb so I can't share it with you all. I'm sure you're crushed at that. But my kids love it. Fifty times a day I have to go to the computer, and start the little video up for them. It's completely ingrained for all of us and we're all walking around singing it.

Today, it... I don't know what... but when I played it, one window after another after another opened up. All playing this song. As fast as I could close one, another would open. It was as though my computer was flipping out, saying "OK! You want this song 50 times? Let's play all 50 at once!!! We'll do the porn spam thing. You will hear this song forever. IT ACTUALLY WILL NOT END. FOREVER."

Or until I reboot. But seriously. They do a great version.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Ahah

My son helped with laundry and slam dunked every item into the washer, of course. Thaaaaaat's what I've been doing wrong all this time. No wonder I never have any fun doing laundry.

Clicking around the dial last night I saw the best "pizza acrobat" in the US. Hmm. That's a job title that verrrrry few people have. But he did make an interesting pizza with gorgonzola, parmigiano, prosciutto, and balsamic vinegar... and I learned you don't put the prosciutto on the pizza before you cook it, or you get burned bits. Hmmm. Well, alrighty then.

I went into a cornfield maze today. It was really, really boring. I realized now we went in the baby part (the part that has the "9" in it, where you pretty much can't get lost even if you try.) The older kids went back in phase 2, which is the rest of the maze and they were gone for an hour. Heh. Well, I would have gone looking for them. Eventually. Yeah. I would have!!

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Beads



This is a necklace someone asked me to re-string... it was her mother's, and the beads were blown glass she bought about 40 or 50 years ago. (She gave me this before my gall bladder issues, and my brain seems to have fried slightly since then; there are various things at work and etc that I just can't remember ...)

I had to buy some black beads to try to match the narrow ones, because 3 were missing. I added gold vermeil daisies instead of some of the older curved metal pieces (but I left them next to the larger blown glass beads). I also added swarovski crystals (instead of the original blue tiny beads, which you can see right near the clasp.)

Now to figure out what to charge her....

Trompe L'Oeil

http://www.usmurals.com/portfolio.html

I love this stuff. I have yet to start Son's Yankee stadium room mural (requested while the beach scene was being worked on)

Friday, October 13, 2006

Just saying

.... I hate school picture day.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Quick notes

I have had a cricket in my basement for 3 days now. Jiminy is chirping all night long, and he echoes through most of the house's ductwork, but I can't hear it when I sleep because of where our room is. (For once having the room farthest from the furnace pays off.) Any suggestions for saving/ sparing his little soulless life?

I just spoke to my sister for 1 hour and 6 minutes. .. and 26 seconds. Not about the cricket... mostly about how unreasonable people can be when they get a, well, bug in their basement and flip out over something very small. It only takes one negative person to break a WHOLE lot of positive momentum.

I am down 11 pounds since my gall bladder began its own private revolution. I have literally walked part of the sole off of one of my sneakers. My new sneakers are giving me savage blisters. Help!

And finally, after surviving having a family party this weekend, I have the following rules to offer to one and all:

  • Don't criticize what the host serves, or the entertainment (music, games, etc) they provide. It's annoying!
  • Do not make jokes that will wound your wife's feelings, especially in front of YOUR entire family. Baaaaad idea. (My BIL can NOT master this rule.)
  • Do not be the first to arrive, the first to leave, OR the last to leave, and for pete's sake bring SOMETHING.
  • Don't have family parties if the rules above make you tense, because they are inevitably broken at EVERY family party.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Fall cleaning

Oh no way, I'm not actually DOING fall cleaning. I meant my links - here are some new ones ...

XKCD

And I wasted all that birthcontrol/

C For Cooking

Have you met me? -( my long lost twin?? )

Northern Attack - great Office blog

PS: I'm not taking Shop Dungarees off my list of links even though, He. Never. Posts.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Ho down

This is just wrong in soooo many ways I don't know where to start. Have a good weekend everybody!

PS. Son loooooooooooved the show. Of course.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Blue

Big news, kiddies! I'm actually breaking out of the house tonight for some gen-u-ine entertainment.

A while ago I bought tickets so that I can bring Son to see Blue Man Group. I didn't mention to him that I actually got the tickets. No, that would be boring, and they were actually a surprise birthday gift (since Daughter got to see Tim McGraw / Faith Hill with me).

Serendipity kicked in. I came across a PBS special featuring said Blues and recorded it on the DVR. Then one day when I knew Son would wander in, I started watching it.

The conversation went something like "What is this, Mom?", an explanation, and some mild interest on his part. Hook.

A few days later he noticed a commercial on tv and came running to tell me that they were going to be in town (tonight).

I said "oh, hmmm, maybe we can go" in a vague, sort of I'm-not-really-giving you-my full-attention tone. Line.

One day while I was recuperating from my gallbladder excavation, he came up to me with a sad face and said "Mom, did you ever get Blue Man tickets?"

I put on a sad face of my own and said "Ohhh, I'll have to check on that when I go back to work. Sorry buddy." Sinker.

He bought it all.

On his birthday I made him a schnazzy little card with images cut & pasted from here and taped the tickets inside.

When he opened the card he was speechless and gasping for air. The boy actually almost started to cry. It was so freaking fantastic. He had NO idea I already had the tickets.

This show will blow his tiny little mind to smithereeeeeens.

It's time to start.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A note to my son

It is October. Oc-freaking-tober. Stop wearing shorts. Stop pouting when I make you put something warm on so the neighbors don't call social services. Stop leaving your coat at school every day because it's sunny out because so help me, I *WILL* send you to school without another coat tomorrow and then the teachers will call ss themselves or just start to whisper about me and I hate that.

Please, please. Bring your homework home. Just because we CAN go back over to school and sneak in through the afterschool program doesn't mean I enjoy that. I mean, I have important things to do like set the DVR so I don't miss any of my shows. And stop filling up the DVR with every episode of scooby doo that is on. I need the space for important things like The Girls Next Door. Oh, and don't watch that. Ever. Your brain will explode.

Please bring my mail home. I am not 100% thrilled to be the PTA co president because I am somewhat disorganized and it is actual work. For me to miss something and then say "Hm, my son must not have brought that home" makes me sound lame.

Please stop bouncing the rubberband ball. I know it is cool and makes a loud thump and I know your father bought you a whole bag of rubberbands for some reason so that you could spend every waking moment for 3 solid days building the enormous thing but I don't ever want to see it again.

Please don't try to take apart THIS clock. I know you got excited when we got you the other one because it shines the time up onto the ceiling and it even resets itself after a power failure which is completely awesome. But so help me if I find the screws on THIS one stripped when you come to me complaining that the time doesn't look right on the ceiling, I am going to kick your little butt.

I love you,
Mommy

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Boooooo


October.

Octobrrrrrr.

I hate to see the summer go.

Homework is one big reason. Extra bills... back to school clothes and lunch money and band lessons and magazine drives and every birthday in this household and ... let's not even talk about Christmas right now.

No more lunches in the park letting the sunshine warm my face. That one definitely depresses. Next spring seems SO far away.

Knowing that I'm going to be held captive by the whim of the weatherman for months makes me wish I could ACTUALLY hibernate. Yet I enjoy living in the northeast. Boston, NYC, the midatlantic coast... there are a bunch of great places to go visit that are an easy drive away. And right in my state I can find plenty of fun places. But I am not, and will never be, a snow bunny.

This morning a baby deer was alone in my yard. His parents were not around this time. So I opened the patio door, and went out on to the deck, and yelled at him to scare him back into the woods. Because my neighbors let their german shepherd run free (despite our town's leash law) and I really have no wish to see if a GS really can catch up to a baby deer. Don't think I didn't feel stupid saying "hey! you! go back in the woods" at 7 am.

Monday, October 02, 2006

More fun and games

Customer service nightmare #1:

After ordering ink online from Dell, (because they facelabel Lexmark printers and I haven't taken the time to figure out what damn cartridge to buy at staples) on FridayI found a package on my doorstep.

A ripped, crushed package. The entire end of the brown cardboard box was torn open and it looked like someone had stepped on it. It contained two ink cartridges. I had ordered FOUR. It got stuck in something, and torn open, that's for damn sure. I can just imagine Delivery Guy looking around to make sure no one was watching, and tossing it onto my front porch. Bastard.

I signed on to Dell's website, and started a nifty online chat with a service rep. Nifty, until the window locked up. Nelson Z Joseph (do you think that's his real name????) simply stopped responding to me, and I tried to ask him if he still liked me, but the window was fro-zen-solid.

Yeah. This is going well.

Aggravating - Nelson Z had my digits, and yet no one called me to say "gee, you abruptly fell off the planet while you were describing how you didn't get your stuff.... whatttup?"

I calllllled their support line next, no wait time, awesome, and talked to a man who was very pleasant (even though he literally confirmed EVERYTHING that I said, about four times, which grated on me after a while). He said no problem, he'd put through a new order to replace the two ink cartridges that I didn't get.

No problem? No email yet confirming any such order. No ink yet. Me, not happy. I want my ink, darnit!

Since I was all worked up and needed to talk about every detail a 5th time, I found a "feedback" form on DHL's website and sent them a love note (in the required 500 characters or less)
package - waybill: (number) was put on my doorstep damaged (printer ink
from Dell, the end of package was literally ripped open and two of four
ink cartridges had vanished). I did not sign for this package. It was
dropped there while I wasn't home. Inexcusably poor service. I have
contacted Dell for replacements, but REALLY, why was nothing done to
remedy by deliveryman??


they snickered about it for a day or two, and I just got this reply:

Thank you for contacting DHL.

I am very sorry this has happened to you. DHL strives to deliver world class service and I apologize for our failure on this occasion.

I have contact your DHL service center about this problem. Your package did not require a signature but our DHL courier should not had left a damage package at your door.

I'm sorry for what has happened but you did the right thing contacting Dell.

Thank you for your time and patience.

Sharon



Sharon doesn't realize I have absolutely no patience whatsoever. I want that deliveryman to go out, clean out his truck, and bring me my ink. Now. (Do you like how she worded "you're on your own, honey, we ain't replacing anything " so nicely? mmm yeah... I'll let the poor grammar she used slide. He done me wrong. )



Nightmare number 2:

My sirius radio is not working (cue the screams of terror and anguish)

The pin that you plug the power cord into is, to be very technical, wonky. If I am in my car and I go over a bumpy road, the radio turns off, then back on. The other day I lost all 30 of my carefully selected presets. Gah! It also acts wonky if it's plugged into my desk. Bump it, it turns off then on. SO it's not actually the power CORD, since 2 different ones are involved. And because I googled and other people have this problem. (Incidentally, it's also a problem with the clock radio you can dock your iPod in. Eventually the pins get loose, and it doesn't dock right. The best technology we have, and yet it can't stand up to daily wear and tear.)

When I called the Sirius warranty line, I waited 43 minutes and 24 seconds on hold, listening to a moog synthesizer version of "call me" by Blondie. Kill me. (Obviously it was someone's dinner break, but I had things to do while the speakerphone serenaded me. Gah!!) They promised I'll have a replacement radio in a few days though. No argument whatsoever. Hmmm. Scary. Silent admission that "yeah, it's a crappy piece of equipment."

Wonder what package I'll get first....