Saturday, January 31, 2009

My Sledding Story

My friend Joan over at "How to be a Housewife". told a hilarious story about sledding with her grandson......which reminded me of this story. We had a place near where we lived called the "Reservoir". It really was a reservoir, and it was at the top of a hill. The hill going down was awesome....perfect for sledding. Anyone who lives anywhere near Lawrence, MA knows about the Reservoir. Part of it was a double hill so you could get airborn if you came off the first hill in just the right way. I took the kids sledding there when they were little. Jamie was about 5 so I lay down on the blow-up sledding tube and she lay on top of me and off we went. Suddenly we were headed directly for a chain link fence. There being no steering on a snow-tube, I screamed for Jamie to jump off. She did....I put my head down and went UNDER the fence. Well.......half of me went under the fence. The other half did not. I was literally STUCK under the fence......half of me on one side, the other half on the other side, and the fence across my back holding me down. I screamed for help and must have been a sight, kicking and screaming like I was having a temper tantrum. Some teenage boys came running over and lifted the bottom of the fence just enough to get me out. I turned and looked up the hill....and there were my sons and my husband (now ex-husband) laughing their butts off. When I finally struggled up the hill, they were commiserating over the fact that they hadn't brought a video camera so we could win $10,000.


January is the boring-est month of the year. The weather in New England has been crap. Our Patriots are not in the Super Bowl....they didn't even make the playoffs so we've been without football for a looooooong time. Our next vacation isn't until June. Life is boooooring. So what's been going on?
*I babysat Emily yesterday. She truly is the happiest baby ever. She did a couple things that just cracked me up. I was lying on the floor on my stomach and she was sitting in front of me. I looked up at her over the tops of my glasses. She looked at me funny, reached over, and with one finger pushed my glasses back up so they sat correctly on my face! I just cracked up. She also hugs and kisses everything now. She was sitting in her highchair and I asked her if she liked her Cheerios. She picked one up and said "ohhhhhhh" as she hugged it to her chest, then kissed it with a giant "muuuahhh"!
*Our new/old kitty cat Oreo has been having a barfing problem. After extensive online research, I decided it was probably hairballs since he is an extremely furry cat. So I've dedicated myself to brushing him often and I bought some IAMS Hairball Control cat food. We'll see what happens. I'll keep you updated. I'm sure you want to know. *I had to go to a different office yesterday for training. It's only a couple miles away but it's straight down a major road with tons of lights and it took me a half-hour. It gave me a new appreciation for the fact that I work 3 minutes from my house. The training was the usual......just about useless. The trainer is a wonderful woman....but she likes to talk (her grandson is the same age as my grand-daughter) and we spent approximately 3 1/2 hours talking and 1/2 hour on actual training. Sounds like fun but I would have appreciated the actual training. *This afternoon we're going up to my Aunt Izzy's son Michael's house and everyone who wants furniture is coming up with their various trucks and vehicles to pick things up. I'm really happy about it and so is Aunt Izzy. We are getting rid of couches, tables, lamps, chairs, mirrors, cabinets, mattresses. There will only be a very few things left. Hurray! *Since the Pats are not in the Superbowl we are not getting together with anyone for a party. I did buy stuff to make nachos for Hubby and I since we will watch it. We are Americans, after all. Besides, we all know that the best part is the commercials and maybe Bruce Sprinsteen at halftime.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Cross Stitch

My family tree cross stitch will be finished soon. Hubby wanted to make the frame, but after going to Home Depot and seeing the motley choice of moulding they had, we decided to try and find a frame online. We finally picked something that could be custom made. It'll come in the four pieces and hubby will assemble it. I promise pictures of the completed project.
After searching online for quite a while, I finally picked out my next cross-stitch project. I wanted a baby announcement for our new Grandson Noah.....
and of course it had to be Noah's Ark. I really wanted just a pattern but couldn't find one I liked so I ended out buying a kit. I don't normally like kits because to me, they're not worth the cost. But I liked this pattern so I got it:

I haven't started it yet because I'm working on a very small and simple special secret project. I'll start this cross-stitch when I'm done that.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Snow, #$%, Snow

Yes, yes.....New England is bracing for another storm. A snow/ice/sleet storm. I'm hearing anything from 6-14 inches. I think at this point most of us would rather have the snow than the ice/sleet. Too many people lost power for too long last month to even want to imagine it happening again. Although.....I would think most people have generators now. I've been fighting with my condo association for the past week because they did such a horrible job plowing after the last storm. 10 days ago. Yes, I've been arguing with them for 10 days. I'm one of those weird people that likes to have my parking space cleared out. A person who does not want to do a three-point turn getting out of my space, because the snowbanks were not pushed back far enough and I can't pull far enough in and the person on the other side of the parking lot also cannot pull in, forcing me to do an unattractive and frustrating three point turn to get out of my space. I'm funny like that.
After calling/emailing for three days I finally threatened the management company representative with reporting him to the condo association (in essence, his bosses) and lo and behold he called me back in 15 minutes! And said he'd vaguely heard that the plowing guy was sick...or in the hospital....or something. He wasn't really sure. Isn't that your job to find out????
He did finally find out that the guy was sick and was supposed to send a substitute out on Friday. The snowstorm had occurred the previous Monday. And of course, no guy came on Friday or over the weekend. Now it's Tuesday and we have a storm coming tomorrow. If this snowstorm doesn't get taken care of expedientially (?) then I will be kicking some serious @#$!
Update on the salad bar debacle:
I did not hear again from Shaw's but I stopped in yesterday and they had a few more things. Not as much as usual.....but do-able. Should I continue to harrass/encourage them to put the salad bar back to its previous glorious selections?
My new kitty-cat has been having a serious barfing problem. About 5 times in the month we've had him. I've tried dry food, wet food, small amounts of food at a time. I even close my bathroom door now so he can't go in and lick up all the soapy water from the tub. Any ideas on what could be wrong or how I can fix it without going to the vet?

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Is There Any Intelligent Life Out There?

We have a local newspaper that comes out once a week. It's been in town's called The Salem Observer. Townies love getting this newspaper because it's all about us.....our kids, our selectman, our schools. When my kids were in sports I made sure I got it every week because the person who wrote the sports articles always made sure every kid got their name in there and also made sure each thing they did was, "awesome, outstanding, unbelievable!" Just what a hometown paper should be. Recently, another group came along and started a newspaper in Salem. They call it the Salem Community Patriot. This paper is part of a conglomerate that has weekly papers in many small towns. It comes to us for free right in my mailbox, so of course I read it. Let me tell you...I read it for the laughs. Because this is the worst-written newspaper I've ever seen in my life. Full of typos, grammar mistakes....and best of all.....a reporter (who I won't name in case she reads this and then I'll get sued) who writes like she's in second grade. Not only the bad spelling and grammar, but she adds in all her own little tidbits and opinions. This week the front page headline was this: The article then went on to say "the topics included information on the United States, zones and maps, states, cities, world geography, and odd questions for the championship round." Really? You need to know about states and cities for a GEOMETRY BEE??? I'm going to have to write to the editor on this one. I just can't help myself.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Baby Babble

Emily is almost 18 months old and "talks" in baby babble. She has a dog named Tina whom she calls TiTi. The other night I had her upstairs in the tub and the dog began barking at some imaginary squirrel or something outside. Emily's eyes opened she couldn't quite believe her dog was barking. She stood up in the tub, put her hands on the edge and leaned over toward the door and shouted, "BABLADEBLABEEBEEBADE...TiTi!" Boy, I guess TiTi was in big trouble!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Where Am I?

I'm working at AAA now. That's the place you go when you want to know how to get somewhere. I figured out once I started working here how much I DON'T know any geography! Seriously, I live in New England and of course I knew where all the New England states are well as the surrounding states and I knew all the "edge states" (states around the edge of the country ie. Florida, Texas, California) but I did not know where all the "middle" states were. And I was pretty fuzzy on the Northern States along Canada. How embarrassing to be trying to make a map and not know where Kansas is, or Idaho, or Utah. (alright....I know what Idaho is shaped like because of the potato bag...but I didn't know it was so far west...I thought it was one of those middle states) So I decided I should study up. I found a great web site that quizzes you on your states. I worked on it for a while and now I know where all the states are.
We also send people driving up to Canada so I used that website to learn about Canada. Since then I've been working on South America, Central America and the Carribean Islands. From there I'm hoping to move on to the rest of the world.
Now when I watch "Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader" I'll be able to answer a few of the geography questions. Although I'm sure I still won't be ready for Jeopardy.
The problem is going to be that besides geography, when I watch "5th Grader" I've found out I've also forgotten everything I know about the parts of grammar. What is the helping verb in the following sentence: "My mother is going to give me a big suprise party for my birthday". Helping verb? Yikes! So now I have to find a site to help me with the parts of grammar.
Maybe I should just go back to 5th grade?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Day After

Like most other people, I was glued to the TV (as much as I could be considering I was working) yesterday as our new President took the oath of office. And like a lot of others, I had a feeling of intense patriotism as I watched such a historic event. The commentary will go on for a while as we watch how the new President adjusts to his office. We'll also be watching Michelle, Malia and Sasha as they become new residents of the White House.
And that's what I'd like to comment upon today. Sure, Barack is giving the country new hope.....but in my book, it's Malia and Sasha who are giving ME new hope.
I've become somewhat disenchanted with some children in the past ten years or so. Call me old-fashioned (it's okay....I know I am) but I believe children have changed immensely in this new generation. Parents have allowed them to become self-centered and allow them to "be themselves" to the point where no one else can stand to be around them. I was a child care provider for most of my life. The biggest reason I had to change direction was because I couldn't deal with children's behavior anymore......or parents' reaction to my attempts at discipline. You know what I'm talking about.
Along comes Milia and Sasha......6 and 10 years old. And although we've had limited access to seeing them, from what I've seen so far I've liked. They are young ladies. They know how to behave. They dressed up in fancy clothes and sat outside in the cold to see their father take the oath of office. Most parents can't even get their kids to dress up (that always drives me crazy when parents say that .... who's the parent here?? If I want you to dress up, dammit, you will!) and sat through boring speeches and long prayers and old ladies singing and reciting poems.....and not a peep out of them! How many parents would be able to get their kids to do that!
And what I loved the best was that after the parade, Malia and Sasha went home to watch a movie and go to bed......they weren't paraded out with their parents to the Inaugural Balls. That drives me crazy when parents bring kids to grown-up events, keep them up way past their bed-time and then expect them to behave. Malia and Sasha went to bed, and even got up and went to school today......which is where they should have been.
I hope parents today are watching Barack and Michelle's parenting skills.....and choose to copy them as much as they copy Michelle's hairstyle or the way she dresses. If the President wants the country to change......that would be a good place for people to start.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

It's Inauguration Day!!

Doesn't this picture just give you shivers? I'm so glad that Obama looks back to Lincoln for "advice". Won't it be awesome if Obama's presidency is as wonderful as Lincoln's was?

Happy MLK Day!

This is how my Hubby must now watch TV. Unfortunate picture of Oreo.....he really isn't a devil cat!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Salad Bar Update #1

Here's my first response from Shaw's: Thank you for contacting us regarding the salad bar. We appreciate the opportunity to assist you.We appreciate you taking the time to share your comments with us. Customer feedback is essential to our company. Your comments have been sent to the Service Deli for further consideration. I wonder how long it'll take to get some "feedback" from the Service Deli?

Friday, January 16, 2009

Salad Bar Hoopla

Here's how incredibly pathetic I am. I wrote a letter to Shaw's complaining about the salad bar. Rather than relating the whole sorry experience to you, I will let you read my letter: Hi, I live right across from Shaw's in Salem and it's my Friday treat once a month to go and get a salad from their salad bar. I went today and was very disappointed in the selection of foods available to make my salad. The fun of making a salad bar salad is getting all the extra "treats". Today there were no nuts, no raisins, no dried fruit, no sunflower seeds and no feta cheese. All the things I like the best! It's not that the containers weren't seems as if those items were taken out completely. Usually I build a salad that costs $5-$6. Today's salad was only $3.12! Very disappointing. Please ask the produce department at the Shaw's in Salem to put all the yummy extras back into their salad bar! I told you I'm pathetic! So I sent the letter to Shaw's corporate office and received one of those manufactured responses thanking me for my input and promising I would hear from them within 24 hours. I sent the letter yesterday I'll be anxiously awaiting my email in the next few hours.....right?


* It is 0 degrees outside. Brrrr...... I work in a "mobile office" (aka trailer) and even though we had the heat at 74 degrees my feet and legs were freezing all morning. I went and got the little electric heater out of the other office and had it directly on my feet. It helped.
*It's kind of hard to complain about how cold it is when parts of the rest of the country are far below freezing!
* I had a 1/2 day today so I came home and chemically assisted my hair back to it's natural color (from like....20 years natural color now being a disgusting shade of gray). Now I will most likely, watch TV....perhaps actually do some cleaning or something.
*Now that I've finished my cross-stitch I want to get started on a new one. (I know....I'm a masochist...what can I say?) I want to make a birth announcement for our new grandson Noah....... and it has to be Noah's Ark of course. I've been browsing online and have found some very cute ones but they're kits. I hate kits. I just want the pattern. I'll keep looking.
*Hardly anything planned for the weekend. We're going to step-son Kenny's house on Sunday so Hubby can help him with his car. That's about all our plans.
*I'm glad American Idol is back on. Without Survivor, Amazing Race or Beauty and the Geek it was going to be a looooooong month. We did miss the first night however, because I threw away the new TV guide and was looking at last week's.
*Emily figured out how to jump off the arm of the couch as she yells, "Jump!" I think son and DIL should just get their names posted outside an ER room door now to save them some time later. She's going to be an "adventurous" type.
*I'm strangely excited about the Inauguration on Tuesday. I'm not into politics at all but I feel like this is going to be an extremely exciting event. I'm going to have to tape it though.....why can't they have it at night so everyone can watch it??

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Family Tree Cross Stitch

Okay it is finally!! I finished the cross-stitch I started LAST MARCH. I had started keeping track of how many hours it was taking me to do it.....but I lost the paper I was doing it on. Oh well......maybe next time.
As you can hasn't been ironed or mounted, etc. I went to the frame store yesterday and ordered two very expensive mats. The inner mat will be the dark red and the outer mat will be the dark green. I think it's going to be very elegant looking. Hubby is going to make the frame because it's going to be a very odd size (19"x19") I'll post pictures again when it's all all all finished.


First I'd like to thank my friend Kaye at Pudgy Penguin Perusals for giving me the beautiful butterfly award you see on the right. I'm sure the fact that we both LOVE penguins had something to do with it! Thanks Kaye! I know you all remember the saga about my Reader's Digest subscription. I emailed Reader's Digest and asked them to change my name on my subscription from my previous married name (Naylor) to my new married name (Vennard) because the mailperson was taking me completely at my word when I told her not to deliver anything to me unless it had my or my husband's name on it. So I got a magazine yesterday which was a surprise because it still had my old name on it. But I did want it changed so I decided to call this time instead of emailing.
I got a person who....shall we say.....was "English challenged".
Me: I emailed a month ago and asked to have my name changed and it wasn't done. RD: sorry. I fix for you now. You tell me new name. Me: It's Vennard...... V as in Victor....e-n-n-a-r-d. RD: OH yes. V-e-n-n-a-r-d, yes? Me: Yes that's right. RD: Okay .....Vennard Naylor, all set. HUH?

Monday, January 12, 2009

Picture Tag

I've been tagged by my good friend Joan at "How to Be a Housewife" blog to be "Picture Tagged". I must post the fourth photo from the fourth folder in my computer. Now...unlike SOME people who have admitted they don't have their photos organized, mine are in alphabetical order and also by event. (Sorry Joan!!)
So here's my photo:
This photo was taken at the Boston Aquarium. Hubby had taken me there for one of the most wonderful Valentine's Day presents I ever got. He had told me to take Valentine's Day off because he wanted to take me for an "adventure". He would not tell me where we were going. Unbeknownst (is that a word???) to me, he had gone to the library and reserved the passes for the Aquarium. We got up that morning and it was snowing, but Hubby assured me that was okay. We drove to the train station in the next town and took the train into Boston, which was a fun part of the adventure in itself. By the time we got to the Aquarium the snow was getting pretty deep and schools had been cancelled. Which meant.....lucky for us......all the school field trips were also cancelled. We had the whole Aquarium practically to ourselves. We spent a long, long time watching the penguins (anyone who knows me knows how much I love penguins) and watched them get fed. (and watched some penguin procreation!) We saw the whole rest of the Aquarium and ate lunch in the cafeteria there. (Instead of going to Quincy Marketplace as planned....but that was okay). We stayed as long as we wanted and then took the train home. When we got to the train station our car was covered up to the wheelwells in snow and we had to dig it out but it was worth it! Now there's rules to this'here Picture Tag -- and here they are: 1) Choose the 4th folder where you store your pictures on your computer. 2) Select the 4th picture in the folder. 3) Explain the picture. 4) Tag 4 people to do the same. I am going to tag; Pudgy Penguin Perusals Suburb Sanity The Adventures of Heidi Lou Barefoot in the Kitchen

A Little About Me

A Meme for Fun! Add this to your own blog and come back and tell me so I can come read it! Copy, paste, and bold what you have done! 1. Started your own blog 2. Slept under the stars 3. Played in a band (I have no rhythm) 4. Visited Hawaii 5. Watched a meteor shower 6. Given more than you can afford to charity 7. Been to Disneyland 8. Climbed a mountain 9. Held a praying mantis 10. Sang a solo 11. Bungee jumped 12. Visited Paris 13. Watched a lightning storm at sea 14. Gone rollerskating 15. Adopted a child 16. Had food poisoning 17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty 18. Grown your own vegetables 19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France 20. Slept on an overnight train 21. Had a pillow fight 22. Hitch hiked 23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill 24. Built a snow fort 25. Held a lamb 26. Gone skinny dipping 27. Run a Marathon 28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice 29. Seen a total eclipse 30. Watched a sunrise or sunset 31. Hit a home run 32. Been on a cruise 33. Seen Niagara Falls in person 34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors 35. Seen an Amish community 36. Taught yourself a new language 37. Acted in a play or performed on stage 38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person 39. Gone rock climbing 40. Seen Michelangelo’s David 41. Sung karaoke 42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt 43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant 44. Visited Africa 45. Walked on a beach by moonlight 46. Been transported in an ambulance 47. Had your portrait painted 48. Gone deep sea fishing 49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person 50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris 51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling 52. Kissed in the rain 53. Played in the mud 54. Gone to a drive-in theater 55. Been in a movie 56. Visited the Great Wall of China 57. Started a business 58. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment 59. Visited Russia 60. Served at a soup kitchen 61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies 62. Gone whale watching 63. Got flowers for no reason 64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma 65. Gone sky diving 66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp 67. Bounced a check 68. Flown in a helicopter 69. Saved a favorite childhood toy 70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial 71. Eaten caviar 72. Pieced a quilt 73. Stood in Times Square 74. Toured the Everglades 75. Been fired from a job 76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London 77. Broken a bone 78. Been on a speeding motorcycle 79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person 80. Published a book -but I'm trying! 81. Visited the Vatican 82. Bought a brand new car 83. Walked in Jerusalem 84. Had your picture in the newspaper 85. Read the entire Bible 86. Visited the White House 87. Won money 88. Had chickenpox 89. Saved someone’s life 90. Sat on a jury 91. Met someone famous 92. Joined a book club 93. Had to put someone you love in Hospice Care 94. Had a baby 95. Seen the Alamo in person 96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake 97. Been involved in a law suit 98. Owned a cell phone 99. Been stung by a bee 100. Read an entire book in one day Your turn!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Lazy Weekend

I emailed a blogging friend of mine because I was concerned that she hadn't blogged for four days. I was worried that perhaps there was some a problem......but no, she said.....there just really wasn't much to blog about.
That's January for you. After the hustle and bustle of the holidays, all of a sudden everything just dies. No parties. No gatherings. No rushing around shopping, wrapping, baking. Just quiet do-nothing weekends.
And that's what we had this weekend. Actually, we went out on Friday night to an open mic because there was someone we wanted to see, but also because I knew the rest of the weekend would be shot because of a big snowstorm coming. We had a great time on Friday night, listening to music and having a drink and some yummy stuffed mushrooms.
Saturday I worked in the morning and we stayed home and vegged the rest of the day. Did some laundry.....watched some TV.....did a little cross-stitch (I am THIS CLOSE to finishing it!!) And our highlight was watching one of the videos Hubby borrowed from the library...."Tootsie" of the best Dustin Hoffman movies of all time.
Today we got up late (decadently late) and did just about nothing. We bundled up in the snow and walked to the store to get my Sunday paper. We chose not to take the car:
And spent the afternoon reading the paper and watching "The Pursuit of Happyness"......(and bawling....what a SAD movie!)
Back to work tomorrow. I'm glad it didn't snow during the week again so the kids won't miss more school. It's so pretty though, isn't it?

Friday, January 9, 2009

French Toast Alert!!

I was reading an article in a local paper and they had some of the things that their writers were blogging about. One of them commented that a "French Toast Alert" was coming. Since I love French toast and Hubby makes the best, I was intrigued. Turns out the person was talking about the phenomenon that happens every time there is a snowstorm in New England. Or even the threat of a snowstorm. Every single person in the world rushes to the grocery store to get milk, eggs and bread. Because God knows you can't live without milk, eggs and bread. How would you make your French Toast in the morning?? This phenomenon has always intrigued me. Are they serious?? Do they really think that even the biggest storm isn't going to be cleaned up in a matter of hours? With all the storm predicting technology these days, we know the storms are coming days ahead of time. The DPW is ready and waiting with sanders and salters and snowplows. You WILL get out people!! You will not starve to death in your homes.....trapped like rats inside houses piled so high with snow that you can't get the front door open. Seriously. I do remember when I was a kid (many many years ago) we had the "Blizzard of '78. Anyone living in New England at the time remembers it. It was not forecast....somehow the weathermen missed the biggest storm New England had seen in decades. People were actually stranded on the highways in their cars. Schools were cancelled for a week (hurray!) and roads were closed. But guess what? We did not starve! We ate what was in the cupboards for a day or two, then walked to the store to pick up a few groceries. We lived without fresh bread, milk and eggs......sadly without French Toast.....but we made it through! They are predicting 3-6 inches of snow on Saturday night. I can guarantee you the grocery stores will be packed tomorrow with even more than the usual Saturday mayhem. I'm going to avoid it and stay home.....even if it means no French Toast for me on Sunday.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Another Fine Mess

Another weather-crappy day in New England. We haven't had good weather for like.....a year. Last summer was the wettest summer on record, and now here we are early January with several snowstorms and a couple ice storms under our of them of historic proportions. Some kids haven't been to school for more than two days in the last month. Makes me think I should move.....but where would I go? Seattle??? With record snows?? sigh........ A woman I work with had a little cell phone issue. She went to T Mobile and bought a "new" cell phone, brought it home and found picture of naked women on it. I wonder if she had to pay extra for that? When she contacted T Mobile, they apologized, asked for the phone back (of course they wanted it back!) gave her a new new phone and promised her a month of free service. She not only got a bill this month, she got charged two "activation fees" plus almost $100 worth of text messaging fees left over from the previous user. She couldn't get satisfaction from T Mobile, so she called the Better Business Bureau where she was told that 80% of their complaints involve cell phones. They're the work of the devil, I tell ya. Scary thing doing business at work with major finance companies. We sell things like traveler's checks and travel money cards and gift cards. I think I might have gotten scammed. When the guy came in after Christmas to buy money cards he gave me the heebeejeebees. I should have listened to my instincts because my boss' boss called me today to ask about the transaction. Geez.....I hope I didnt' get fleeced by the guy. I had to do something today I SO did not want to do. I sent my letter of resignation to my summer camp boss. I tried really hard in the past four years to get a job in a school district so I could continue to work at summer camp, but it wasn't meant to be. I'm going to miss that job.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

A Winter's Day

Hubby and I are bizarre in that we like going to the beach in the winter. We love the isolation and the beauty and the peace. On Saturday the sky was a bright, brilliant blue and we decided to take a ride to the beach. It was gorgeous...including all the snow. Having both lived all our lives in New England, we dressed for the occasion.
Despite the cold, we had a lovely day. We walked a bit on the beach and picked up more shells to add to our already copious collection. Then we drove over to the center in search of fried dough. The only places open were selling pizza. I suggested we drive further up the beach to Hampton and nothing was open there. Then Hubby just...........kept driving. And driving. "We'll just go up to the next curve" he'd say and then keep going. I didn't mind. It was beautiful. Anyone who's driven along the coast from Salisbury through Hampton and Rye and beyond knows it's well worth the ride. We turned around at Wallis Sands and headed home. It was beginning to get dark, so I caught the sunset on a drive-by.

Friday, January 2, 2009

A New Member of the Family

Hubby and I got a new household member yesterday. His name is Oreo. Oreo used to live at our house but had made the rounds and is now returned to us. Here's Oreo's story:
About 5 years ago, daughter Jamie and son Nick were both living with me in my condo. Nick had graduated college and Jamie was still in college. I was dating Hubby, who lived in Fitchburg, MA. I was at his house for the weekend when I got a call from the kids asking if they could get a cat. Please, please, please. I said no, we already had enough people living in our tiny condo. But Mom, we are at the animal shelter and we found this beautiful cat and he's adorable and he loves us already and we love him so please, please, please!!
I caved. And they were right. He's a beautiful cat and very cute and lovable. He stayed with me and Jamie when Nick moved out then when Jamie moved out they decided Oreo should go and stay with Nick.
He's been living at with Nick all this time. But Nick recently invited his girlfriend Kelly to move in, and Kelly is allergic to cats. It was a tough decision for or girlfriend.....but girlfriend won out so he asked Jamie if she could take Oreo.
Jamie had no problem with that. She lives alone and Oreo would be good company for her. Less than a month later her landlord found out about the cat and sent her a letter saying she'd be evicted unless she got rid of the cat. So she asked Hubby and I if we could take him.
Of course we said yes. We can't having this sweet, lovable cat going to the animal shelter. So yesterday Jamie came over with Oreo and all his assorted paraphernalia. His two beds, his scratching post, his little house, his box of toys, his treats, his food, his two litter boxes and bucket of litter. It's like having a new baby in the house.
He seems to have settled right in. He sniffed around everywhere. He seems to like Hubby's studio because after climbing over the piles of stuff he can sit on the windowsill and watch the squirrels in the yard. I assume that when I clear all the Christmas decorationss off the windowsill in the living room he'll like sitting there as well.
He spent half the evening sitting with me in my recliner last night and half the evening lying with Hubby on the couch.
He didn't seem too upset about being closed out of our bedroom last night. I'm a horrible sleeper and having a cat jumping on the bed, etc would drive me crazy. Plus he's a furball and I don't need fur in my bed and up my nose all night.
It's kind of nice having a cat again. We'll see what happens when one of the kids moves and wants him back!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year's Eve

My kids gave Hubby and I a Christmas gift of a night out for New Year's Eve. They were very sneaky.....they asked my brother to invite us over for New Year's so we wouldn't plan anything else for the night.
They gave us tickets to Amesbury Playhouse. This is an established playhouse that puts on community theater presentations. My parents go there all the time and love it.
We got there around 7pm (after another snowstorm of around 5-6 inches). The snow had pretty much stopped by then and the roads were in decent shape. They had Hors D'oeuvres and we got a ticket for a free drink at the bar. At 7:30 they served rib for me and stuffed cornish hen for Hubby. Dessert and coffee was included.
The show started about 9pm. It was Neil Simon's Brighton Beach Memoirs. We'd never seen it before....didn't even know what the story was about. It was cute and had some funny moments.
The young boy who played the narrator was impressive in that he had a ton of lines and didn't stumble over them at all......but he was kind of wooden. He didnt' show much emotion. The rest of the actors and actresses were very good.
The show ended at 11:30 and the DJ took over. He played a very eclectic mix of songs, most of them for my generation or older, which we appreciated. The last two events we went to we felt like old fogies because they played more recent music. We danced until the countdown, when we toasted with champagne in souvenir glasses. The party continued on and we left about 1am.
It was a beautiful gift from my children. We had a great time and we'll tuck it in our memory books.