Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Where has the time gone?

A month ago today we arrived in San Francisco for a week. It seems like a lifetime ago. And I now have a better appreciation for Tony Bennett's song about the city. We can't wait to go back. What a fantastic city. What a fantastic vacation. Here are only a few of my favorite pictures from the week.

Union Square viewed from high atop (okay, not really that high) Macy's at the Cheesecake Factory.

Sea lions at Pier 39! Say it with me... "Awwwww!"

Say hello to my little friend! A ray (manta?) at the Pier 39 aquarium.



I mean...


We've decided that when (WHEN, dammit!) we win the lottery, we're definitely getting a place in San Francisco. And our friends and family are all invited to visit us there as often as they want!

Good news - I'm giving my notice tomorrow! I'm sure my boss will be shocked! Though we all know she shouldn't be. All the warning signs have been there for quite some time, I've even tried to talk to her several times about my grievances, but she didn't want to hear it. So, see ya! My new job will be as a payroll administrator. Going to start on July 7. I've got a good feeling about it. Let's hope it lasts a long time!

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Well isn't that special?

The DaVinci Code was on the Encore Mystery channel Tuesday night, and since I didn't feel like playing Mass Effect or watching the Red Sox game (no, really, I feel fine), I decided to watch it. I thought it was... interesting... and decided I'd like to read both books. I went to ebay yesterday morning and plugged in the author's name, Dan Brown, and get this - 666 items were found. No joke! I snortled (you know, a cross between a snort and a chortle) and thought maybe I won't purchase them through ebay. Or I'll leave it up to The Man to pick up copies somewhere.

9 days to San Francisco! AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, March 20, 2008


I'm always wanting to make cards for The Man's niece and nephew. They're still very young and I know they'd get a kick out of them. I finally made myself sit down and make them each a card for Easter, and they're going in the mail tomorrow. No worries - they'll have them on Saturday!

Here's the card for his nephew. It's a CASE of a card a friend of mine found on Splitcoast Stampers. Love it! The last panel being slightly askew is getting under my skin, though. Knew I should've used a ruler to line them up.

Here's the card for his niece.

I'm not thrilled with how his niece's card came out, but after spending about 3 hours trying to come up with something, I just decided to keep it simple.

I hope they like them!

I planned to take a picture of the card we sent this past Christmas, but I couldn't find it! If I can't take a picture right away of something I've made, I always keep one card aside so I've got a template. It'll turn up somewhere. As soon as it does, I'll share!

Busy, hectic, crazy week. That's nothing new. My brain is fried, and I'm exhausted. Still feeling overwhelmed in English Comp, but know I can get through it.

And, we're both off from work tomorrow! His office is closed, and I'm taking a personal day. It's going to be so nice sleeping in tomorrow. The only plan we have so far is going to the Olive Garden for lunch. Being that it's Good Friday, I'm going to make that my main meal for the day. Well, half of the portion size will be my main meal! Their portions are ginormous. The only thing I know for sure that I'm getting is an Italian orange cream soda. Yum!

Not sure yet what we're doing on Easter. We'd originally planned to head to NY, but it just didn't pan out. Then I wanted to invite everyone out here, but Dad's not feeling great, and I wouldn't want him and Mom to be alone on Easter if my sister and her family headed out this way. So, we may head to The Man's grandmother's house for Easter dinner. Or I may just cook up the itty bitty roast beast I picked up at the grocery store today, make some garlic mashed potatoes, find a good veggie and have our own humble little Easter dinner.

I'm having a Tastefully Simple party next Saturday. I wish you two could make it!!! I'm looking forward to it, though. I've got 5 positive responses so far, and two maybe's because they might have to work. If you've never heard of Tastefully Simple before (I hadn't until my neighbor had a party back in October), check out their stuff here. Their beer bread mix is fantastic. And I love the fact that when someone orders something at or through a party, the order is shipped directly to them - it doesn't all go to the hostess who then has to dole it all out and deliver it. That's freakin' sweet.

Okay, so this was way too scattered. Good thing it's not being graded!

Valerie, you'll have my email shortly! :-)

Thursday, March 13, 2008

She's Alive!

Lucky for both of you who read this blog, the course I'm enrolled in right now highly suggests that we journal on a daily basis. I'm not saying I'll be able to post every day but compared to how much I've been around here lately, anything will be an improvement. So, strap yourselves in and get ready for more excitement from the life of the mundane!

Okay, but really. HI VALERIE! I've missed hanging out at your place. I'm going to stop over this evening to say hello (not enough time right now - I'm on my lunch break, and still need to give the kittehs their treats before they revolt). OH! And thank you for getting to the bottom of the MASH game for me! Your investigation revealed that I did play it when I was young! I'd completely forgotten that's what it was.

So, yes, I'm still taking college edumacation courses. Right now I'm enrolled in an English Comp class, and am horrified at my beginnings. Turns out you forget a hell of a lot more than you think you did since high school. I can look at a sentence and know the structure is wrong, and fix it so that it looks right. However, this whole simple sentence, complex-compound sentence thing, along with proper adverb and adjective placement thing is going to push me over the edge. I talked with the prof last night and he gave me some really good examples that I wrote down in an effort to remember going forward, otherwise I'm going to continue to suck in this course. And that pisses me off, because I love to write. Between you and me, I honestly don't give a rat's ass if a sentence is wrong because it contains an out-of-place adverb that can be uttered only by the Pope during every other year that Easter falls in April. But for the sake of doing well in this course, I kind of, sort of, have to. At least the prof is cool. For once, a teacher "gets" me. Before our conversation ended last night, he thanked me for having a personality in the class forum, and in person. There are quite a few folks in the course who are pretty lifeless. I can't remember a single class forum discussion in any of the classes I've taken so far where any of the teachers or the other students "got" me. So thank you Senor P for your understanding, and for your own wry sense of humor. Hope my future holds more of your courses. I'll bring the Swiss cheese and mustard.

I had an interesting job interview last month that, if anything, made me feel absolutely fantastic about myself, my intelligence and my capabilities. It was for an Administrative Assistant position at a brokerage firm. Roughly 10 to 15 minutes into the interview, the guy told me flat out that he wasn't going to hire me. The reason? He said that between what I was telling him, and what he saw on my resume, I was going to be bored inside of a year and leave. He went on to say that I was too smart to continue doing admin work.


That was a hugely refreshing ego booster. My current employer squashed that pretty quickly though. But I don't want to get started on my ire towards them right now.

The cats are starting to swing from the curtains. I'd best get their treats.

More later!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The 80's - my favorite decade!

A little trip down memory lane, survey style.

1. How old were you in 1980?

2. How old were you in 1989?

3. Were you a Toys R' US Kid?
You betcha!

4. Did you watch Transformers?

5. Did you see E.T. on the big screen?
Several times.

6. Did you own a Lite Bright?
Yes. That thing rocked.

7. Who is your Favorite Golden Girl?

8. When someone says "Who you gonna call?" you think?

9. What was/were your favorite toy(S)?
Merlin, Simon, was Atari a toy?

10. Did you have a Pogo Ball?
A what now?

11. Did you listen to New Kids on the Block?
Good God, no.

12. What New Kid did you have a crush on?
To this day I don't know who any of them are, and I'm okay with that.

13. Did you play M.A.S.H?
No... didn't know it was a game. I watched M*A*S*H on TV though.

14. Did you watch The Care Bears?

15. Did you have Jelly bracelets?

16. Did you own a glo-worm?

17. Did you ever own a slap bracelet?
No. I didn't like them.

18. The Breakfast Club or Sixteen Candles?
Awwwww, man. Do I have to choose?? Hmmm... Sixteen Candles.

19. Did you have a crazy hair style?
Not until I got that perm in my senior year. Holy crap. What was I thinking?

20. What was your first bike?
A little red tricycle!

21. Name one thing you still own from your childhood?
I've got my huge Bear Bear that my brother gave me, the koala my parents gave me (and who is currently residing with my parents), and a little trinket box my Mom's best friend gave me when I was really, really sick. Okay, that's more than one. Get over it.

22. Did you have a Cabbage Patch Kid?
Never. Those things were, and still are, creepy.

23. Did you dress like Madonna?
Uh, no.

24. Rainbow Brite or Strawberry Shortcake?
Strawberry Shortcake.

25. Did you watch Miami Vice?
Every Friday night at my sister's house, without fail.

26. Did you own a pair of Jelly Shoes?
Yeah, I wore them once. Those things suck.

27. Did you own a Trapper Keeper?
Yup. It had a picture of a couple of very cute gray tiger kittens on it.

28. Atari or Nintendo?
We had Atari. Frogger ruled.

29. Did you play Pac-Man?
That's what we played when we weren't playing Frogger.

30. Which was better:
To this day I've never played Nintendo, so I have to say Atari.

31. He-Man or She-Ra?
Yikes. I'll pass.

32. What movie scared you the most?
Alien (I know it came out in 1979, but I didn't watch it until 1982).

33. Did you try to dance like Michael Jackson?

34. What Is The First Thing That Comes To Mind When You Hear "Flux Capacitor"?
"If my calculations are correct, when this baby hits eighty-eight miles per hour... you're gonna see some serious shit."

35. What other colors did Pepsi come in?
Clear. And it was gross.

36. Roger Rabbit Or Howard The Duck?
Roger Rabbit!

37. Did you ever beg your parents to have your school picture taken with the 'LASER' background?

38. Do you know what the Ninja Rap is?
Awww man, now I'm gonna have nightmares about Vanilla Ice. Jeez.

39. Do you know why people cringe when they hear the word BUCKNER?
Oh yes.

40. Can you name the family members from National Lampoons Vacation movies?
Clark, Ellen, Rusty, Audrey, Christie Brinkley, cousin Eddie, Aunt Edna, Lasky, Roy Walley, Uncle Lewis (Christmas), that's all I can think of right now.

41. WallyWorld or Europe?
WallyWorld! WallyWorld! WallyWorld!

42. What was your favorite movie from the 80's?
Anne of Green Gables (the 1985 version in which Anne is played by Megan Follows). Love, love, love, love, love that movie.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Best. Super Bowl Commercial. Ever.

Oh, and by the way -


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Coming up for air

What a busy few months it's been, boys and girls. So much has been going on since my last entry. Given my state of my mind during that week, The Man and I decided we'd try to head to NY so I could spend my birthday with family. Everything fell into place beautifully - the vet had room so we could board Buster and Lucy for the long weekend. The Man's eye was healing well (he had a little more surgery on 8/30), and we had both already scheduled 8/30 and 8/31 off, so we didn't have to worry about missing work. It was so nice to be home, surrounded by family. I really needed it this year.

School has been taking up a majority of my free time. And when I'm not working, or working on school stuff, I'm demonstrating stamping workshops. And I've demo'd only 2 workshops since my last blogging (will try to find some time this weekend to post pics of what we've made). And the really sad part? I'm taking only one course right now. Basic Math. Yeah. I suck so hard at math that I'm struggling through the basic stuff. And I'm taking algebra next term! Yee-haw! May as well get it out of the way so I don't have it hanging over my head for the next two years. Thank God The Man has been helping me when I need it. Which is pretty much all the time. In college he majored in math (and how's this for a math mind - he can look over a Rubik's cube, then put it behind his back and solve it - and that's just sick), and he has the ability to help me work through a problem without giving me the answer, and without making me feel like an idiot, though I know I am. He'd be an awesome teacher. My course advisor tried to talk me into taking two courses next term, and The Man said, "You're struggling with basic math now, have already signed up for algebra next term, which is more difficult, the holidays are coming and you're going to take a second course?" He didn't verbally end the sentence with "Are you out of your mind?" but it was written all over his face. So I emailed my advisor and the registrar and said thanks but no thanks, one course is sufficient for next term.

In other news...

File this one under "That ain't right." It's Tuesday, October 23. It's 11:15 pm. It's 72 degrees outside - and I'd convert that to Celsius for ya, but there's a leak in my brain - the air conditioner is on and it's still so warm in here that my fingers are swollen. How's that for "This sucks ass!"? I shouldn't complain. Every day of warmth is one less day to worry about snow and how people around here lack the skills to drive in it.

The woman at work who's daughter was killed and granddaughters were shot in the head? Both granddaughters are out of their comas, are gaining strength and can get around with walkers! They've still got a long way to go, though. Last I knew (a few weeks ago) neither of them was able to speak yet. But they're both alive, responding, walking, and that is just nothing short of a miracle.

The Man and I went to Game 2 of the ALCS, a week ago last Saturday. Which the Red Sox lost. In the 11th inning. Around 1:30 AM. We weren't able to get tickets to any regular season games, and the Friday morning before Game 2 he called me at work and said, "I've got a crazy thought..." We agreed it'd be best to stay in town, so we got a room at a really nice hotel (I try to not think about how much it cost to stay there for just the one night), drove there, then took the Green Line over to Fenway and then after the game took a taxi back to the hotel. It was so nice after the game knowing we wouldn't have to fight the crowds on the Green Line, or with traffic trying to head out of town. What a warm and fuzzy feeling it was when we got into that taxi, knowing that within 15 minutes we'd be snug as bugs and sound asleep. Even though the Sox lost that game, we're so glad we went. Neither of us had ever been to a playoff game, and it was quite an experience. The crowd was so alive, and very well behaved that night, and seemed to behave throughout the entire series. The game we attended, there was no beer was spilled on us. We didn't hear a lot of swearing. Well, until we were walking down Lansdowne Street after they put Gagne in to pitch the 11th. But the words we heard aren't suitable for printing here. The closest we'd been to a playoff/World Series game was in 2004 when we took the tour of Fenway on the first day of the World Series. I kid you not, it felt like there was electricity in the air. It was incredible. I'll never forget the feeling. We briefly considered trying to get World Series tickets this year, but the home games are on weeknights, and with our schedules, it'd just be insane. So we'll suffer with the rest of the nation (Red Sox and otherwise!) through the ramblings and idiocy that spew from the mouth of Tim McCarver. I'm so throwing a party when FOX stops signing him to cover baseball.

The weekend before The Man and I went to the game, my Haggis buddies and I went to 4 fabulous Enter the Haggis shows in 2 short nights. I so needed that break. I'm glad The Man and Zee continued to encourage me to go, even though the weight of the world that's been on me was telling me otherwise. Wish we could have weekends like that, say, every other month. Good friends, good food, good booze, good music. Doesn't get much better than that. :-)

Well, it's getting late, my mind is mush thanks to the splendor of mathematics, and I've got another long, annoying day ahead of me at work tomorrow. So, toodles for now. Hope everyone is well. And hope I can find some more free time to keep up with bloggings. Because, really, what I've written here is only the tip of the iceberg.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

It's tomorrow, today

Not sure where to even begin to tell you about all the things about this week that have made it a rough one, but I'm going to try, because I need to get it out of my system.

Monday was already a bad week. And it was only the first day of the week, so that's gotta tell you something.

This particular frame of time has been tough for me for quite some time now. On August 22, 1992, 9 days before my 22nd birthday, my sweetheart, angel of a cat Grace passed away. She left in typical cat fashion - went around and said her goodbyes to everyone, then walked on up into the woods, never to be seen again. Only at the time, we didn't know she was saying goodbye.

Fast forward several years, to the first birthday without my Aunt B. Her birthday was August 27, only 4 days before mine. It was always neat, having our birthdays so close together. She was like my 2nd Mom. She was always a good ear when I was upset with my mother (she and my mother were sisters), and always had a way of showing me my mother's point of view without making me feel like an idiot. And sometimes when she felt Mom and Dad were being a little too strict, she'd talk to Mom about it, and it always went smoothly. She was an awesome woman, and I still miss her every single day.

Then there was last year. On August 11, the CFO where I work died of heart failure. He had turned 49 only weeks before. It was a shock to the entire bank. He was, without a doubt, one of the top 3 best people to work for there. Very approachable, very likable, laid back. An overall good guy. The floor I work on was so eerily quiet in the weeks following his death I almost couldn't stand it. For months I'd always stop short when I walked by his office.

And then, on August 28 of last year, Babs passed away, very unexpectedly. 3 days before my birthday. I was devastated. I still struggle with it. I questioned God on why he kept taking my babies away from me just before my birthday. I still don't have an answer. Maybe I'm not ready for it. Maybe I won't know until I'm in heaven. And I can't tell you how many times I've begged Him to let me keep my Buster for at least another 10 years, and to please not take him from me near my birthday. Lucy, either.

And here we are, present day. Only let's go back to Monday, August 27. I was already down, had already been teary eyed and very emotional for a majority of the weekend, and then here it was again. August 27. Aunt B's birthday, and only a day to the year since Babs passed away. I was still very emotional and trying very hard not to be. Around 11:30 that morning, we find out that a daughter and possibly 2 granddaughters of a woman we work with might have been killed by the hand of another. My heart immediately went into my stomach, and I wanted to throw up. Details were sketchy, nobody really knew what was going on, only that the daughter that lives with her came to pick her up to to go her other daughter's house. At first, it was assumed all 3 of them were dead. News reports, as is true of many, gave out many details that hadn't yet been confirmed by police, or family, but they went ahead and made their reports anyway. We finally learn for a fact that her daughter is dead. Shot in the head. Their dog was dead. Also shot. But the 2 granddaughters that were in the house at the time were still alive, but had also been shot in the head. As I write, they're both still in critical condition. Miraculously, during the night Tuesday one of them opened her eyes and wiggled her toes, so there is a shred of hope. The other, as far as I know, is still in a coma. Their grandmother, the woman I work with, is holding herself together remarkably well. I credit that to an enormous amount of prayer support, family support and community support (in that order). And if anyone who reads this feels inclined to add their prayers and good thoughts as well, please feel free to do so. I know they will be appreciated.

So my emotional birthday week just keeps getting more and more emotional each year, it seems. I feel guilty celebrating. I feel guilty if I don't go to the wake tomorrow. I have a hard enough time being happy on my birthday as it is. Is it selfish to not go to the wake because I can't deal with any more birthday heartbreak?

And can I have one year, just one stinking lousy birthday, without some sort of heartache surrounding it?

Maybe I don't want to know the answer to that question, either.

I will try to have a happy day tomorrow, for my own sake, and for that of my parents, who are happy that I am their daughter. And I am happy and blessed that they are my parents.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Amen, sister!

So much to write about, and I will. Tomorrow. No, really!

In the meantime, please enjoy the following video from a girl after my own heart. I give you Miss Platnum.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


The Man allowed me one early birthday present last night, since he had the box shipped to my office and I had to stare at it all day yesterday. He can be a brat, but he always redeems himself. He allowed me to open this:

Surprised I didn't squeal like a schoolgirl!

Da dweeeee da da da dweee dow!