Friday, October 30, 2009

It's the most wonderful time of the week....

Hip, Hip, Hooray for Friday!!!!!

I'm very happy it's Friday.
I'm anticipating a very quiet day today at work, so I'm keeping everything crossed that it goes that way.
Scooter is having a blast (I'm sure) at his Doggie Daycare Halloween Party and Jim and I have a fun evening planned.
Jim's getting his haircut, then we're heading out to have dinner with a friend, followed by a night on the town. It's been a while since I've gone out in Boston and I'm looking forward to it.

Thanks for all your GPS suggestions both here and via I just hope that JIM READS THIS ENTRY AND TAKES NOTE.

Who said I'm not subtle???

We had a great time last night over at my sister-in-laws house....yummy dinner and fun, as always. They have Beatles Rock Band for their Wii, and I kind of loved it. I didn't love the fact that it was only Beatles, but Rock Band in general seems like it would be very fun. I've played Guitar Hero before and really liked it, but I loved the idea that you have the choice to play guitar, play the drums, sing the lead vocals or sing back-up vocals.
FUN!!! I think I'll put that on my Christmas list as well. :-)
That's all for today....have a safe weekend and a GREAT Halloween!!!!

I came across this costume on line and thought it was a HOOT!

This one too... :-)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

All I want for Christmas is a G.P.S.....

Sweet Jesus, was I annoyed last night!

My friend Jeff was being installed last night as the new rector for a church in Brookline, MA. Hooray Jeff!!!
Well, there was a service starting at 7pm, immediately followed by a reception to celebrate the occasion and I was invited to attend.

I left work, picked up Scooter at doggie daycare :-) and then headed home. I got everything ready for this morning, so I wouldn't have to do it when I got home (prepped the coffee, made lunches, took out the trash - today is trash day). I fed the dog, ate dinner, took the dog out, and then made my way into Boston. This was just around 5:30.

I knew traffic was going to be annoying because it was raining (see yesterday's post...grrrrrr) not to mention the fact that last night also happened to be the Celtic's home opener (they won, by the way).
After sitting in traffic, I arrived at my exit with about 10 minutes to get to my destination. I knew I'd be a tad late, but I figured that I would 'sneak' into the back of the church un-noticed.

Boy was I wrong.

Cut to 40 minutes later when I'm still searching for the @%$!*#& church!!

Oh, there's nothing quite like being lost in Boston on a rainy night. Hardly anyone around to ask for directions and those you do ask will undoubtedly have NO idea how to get to your destination. Awesome.

As it turns out (I checked online this morning) I was nowhere NEAR where I needed to be. The problem was that my directions said to stay on Harvard Ave. and the street I was looking for would be a left off of that street. Well, at one point, Harvard Ave. becomes Harvard St., so I naturally assumed that I'd gone too far.
And I was wrong.
Had the directions been CORRECT, I would have continued on Harvard St. and found the church. Instead, I drove around the entire Harvard Ave. area thinking that I must have missed the damn street.'s too late baby, now it's too late.

Jim was attending a work event in Cambridge, so rather that meet up with him after the service and drive him home (which was the original plan) I met him earlier and stayed for the rest of his event.

The moral of the story?

I need a G.P.S. for Christmas.

So, if anyone has any suggestions about which ones are good....ones to avoid....etc....I'd be happy to hear.

In other news, today is my sister-in-law Barbara's birthday!!

We're going over to her house for dinner tonight, which I'm sure will be very fun....and game-filled. :-)

Have a great day, and it's only one more day until Friday!!!!


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain.....

Unfortunately, the rain around here goes everywhere, and I'm NOT a fan.

Mostly because people have NO idea how to drive in it. I understand being cautious, but come on....we're not talking about torrential downpours. It's a rain shower for Pete's sake!!! Yeeesh.
Other than that, I'm having a great day so far. :-)

Oh - I've decided to join a gym. I haven't had a gym membership for a long time. About a year ago I joined the local YMCA, but never went. The biggest reason for that was because I was getting home around 6pm and really had no desire to spend what little time I had away from work, at the gym. With my new schedule, I'll be able to leave work, go straight to the gym, and still get home at a normal hour. That's the plan, anyway.

I really need to get myself back into shape and lose the extra weight I've packed on within the last year or's making me crazy.

Don't worry, I won't be turning this blog into a gym diary - but I'm sure I'll have a few gym stories to tell at some point. If someone (me) happens to fall off a treadmill or something, you can rest assured you'll hear about it here.

Have a nice day and stay dry.....if it's raining where you are. :-)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Back on track.

Good Day!!

I'm trying to get myself back on track as far as my 'morning blogging' is concerned.
As many of you know, I'm a creature of habit and not a fan of change. Especially when it keeps me from my 'blog time'!!!
How rude of my boss to expect me to put work first...I mean, REALLY!!! :-)

Let's see....last night was pretty quiet around the old homestead.

I got home from work and grilled up some chicken in preparation for Jim's arrival home from work. He made a GREAT recipe of Ina Garten's. It was for Szechuan Noodles, but he changed it up a bit. The first time he made it (following her recipe) it was not so great. Her recipe calls for SIX cloves of garlic. That's right - SIX.

Believe me, we like garlic, but that first time he made it we thought we were going to collapse. It was way, WAY too much garlic. This time around, he only used two cloves - which was MUCH better.
He also added chicken, shredded carrots and peas (she only calls for bell peppers and scallions) as well as making a few other substitutions based on what we had around the house.
The original recipe can be found here - if you're interested. :-)

Adoption Update: First of all, thanks again for all your kind words, advice, and encouragement. You're the nicest! After my post the other day, Jim called the woman I've been trying to reach all week and when he too, got her voicemail he left a message and then promptly called the regional office. He got the name of one of the 'higher ups' and gave her a call. Yes....he got her voicemail and left her a detailed explanation of what's been going on.
Shocking - she returned our call!!!
She was quite nice and assured us that we weren't forgotten. However, she said that they invite people to take the classes, based on the children they have in the system. So - in other words, since we're interested in adopting an infant we won't be invited to take the classes until there's an infant in the 'system' waiting to be adopted.

Say what??????

Not only is that ridiculous, that's the first thing we've heard about it....and I have a strange feeling it's not the whole truth. In fact, I KNOW it's not true.
Anyway, I'm not going to get all riled up about it, but it's clear that Jim and I need to seriously look at other options since our original plan isn't quit living up to our expectations.
Have no fear...I'm not stressing about's just a slight bump in the baby road.

Ummm....'baby road' sounds really wrong....but I'm not changing it.

So that's the latest. I'll be sure and keep you posted.

In the meantime....have a great Tuesday.
FOUR MORE DAYS until you-know-what!!!!!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Late to the party....

Hello everyone and Happy Monday!!!

Sorry I didn’t write earlier, but I had a wicked busy morning.
For those of you not from the Boston area, let me translate: I had a very busy morning.

Anyway…I’m writing now, so settle down.

The weekend was fun, but for once, it felt really long. As you may recall, we were dog sitting for my sister’s four month old beagle this weekend.
Everything went well, in spite of Scooter being VERY jealous and Miner (that’s the puppy’s name) wanting to play all the time – as puppies do.
All in all it was quite fun having two dogs around the house, although I forgot how ‘challenging puppies can be. Yikes.

This is him…..ain’t he cute?!?!?

Friday night Jim and I went out to dinner with our friends Kelly, Mattie and Katie which was very fun. We hadn’t seen them in a long time, so it was nice to catch up.
Saturday we spent the morning around the house playing with the pups, went out shopping with Jim’s mother and our niece Molly, grabbed some lunch while we were out, and then headed home. Jim made an AMAZING squash soup for dinner and then he and Charles headed down to Hyannis for the night. Charles was going to a Halloween party that he goes to every year and wanted us to join him. Unfortunately, we were watching the dogs, so I just stayed home and Jim went down there for the night. He was able to get a cheap hotel room, so he wouldn’t have to deal with driving all that way after being out late. It was a VERY smart idea. I had a relaxing night on the couch with the two dogs. Of course we had some CRAZY weather that night. It was so windy and rainy that I thought the roof was going to blow off and I’d have to take shelter in the storm cellar. Dorothy!!!
From time to time, Scooter would hear the wind outside and start barking, which would cause Miner to start barking. However, Miner is still little, so he was totally freaked out by Scooter’s reaction. I ended up with one dog running around, barking like a loon and the other one barking his puppy-face off, but running on and off my lap because he was afraid to leave my side. It was kind of insane. Once the rain slowed down (and they were completely exhausted), we all were able to sit on the couch and relax. It was nice.

Sunday morning I got up around 8am (good dogs!!) and within a few minutes of me being awake, Jim came home. I was happy to see him, but also slightly surprised. I assumed that he’d sleep in and then go out for breakfast (hell, that’s what I would have done) – but I guess he woke up early and headed right home.
We had some breakfast, took showers, went grocery shopping and then went to his sister’s house to watch the Patriots game. Shortly into the 2nd quarter I headed home to meet my sister, who was coming to pick up the dog. Once he was gone, I headed back to Jim’s sister’s house to watch the rest of the game. We didn’t end up staying for the whole thing (since they were winning) because we had a bunch of stuff to do at home.
Last night was PUMPKIN CARVING NIGHT!!!! Fun.

I won’t go into a lot of detail, but my pumpkin came out OK. It was a very detailed stencil (I decided to challenge myself) and it was pretty complicated, so I’m happy that I at least finished it. Whatever….it’ll be a pile of mush by next week anyway.

Here are some pictures of the house all decked out for Halloween, as well as some pics of Scooter in his Halloween costume…..happy happy.
If you want to see more, you can check out my flickr account by clicking on the do-hickey on the left side of the screen.

This is our front door decor....

Jim's, huh?

This is, it's not looks better from far away. :-)

Don't worry, he got lots of treats....

My favorite one...

Friday, October 23, 2009

Times is hard....times is hard.

For those of you who read this blog and aren't show-queens, the title of a today's entry is a 'Sweeney Todd' reference. The original Broadway cast. Not either of the revivals. Not the movie. We're talking about Angela, and no one else.
I'm a purist. :-)

However, the title is also a reference to the way things are going with our adoption process.

Unfortunately, we've made absolutely no progress since submitting our application 120 days ago.
That's right....we mailed in our application one hundred and twenty days ago. At first we thought we'd be starting classes sometime after the 4th of July...then we hoped it would be sometime in August...then we were told that we were GUARANTEED to be in the next round of classes and we would be receiving our 'formal' invitation two weeks before classes began, which was supposed to be at the end of October/beginning of November.
Well, it's nearing the the end of October and we haven't heard a peep from anyone. Not only that, but I spoke to our 'contact' person last week and she had no information. Due to her lack of info, she suggested that I call her boss. I've left messages with her boss twice at this this point -once last week and once this week and I have yet to receive a return call.

I know (from various sources) that much like the rest of the state, the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families are in a really unstable position right now. They've suffered through several rounds of lay-offs and there are probably going to be more heading their way. That's all well and good, and I COMPLETELY understand - but no return call? That's just rude.

It's really difficult for us because we're totally up against the wall with this one. It's not like I can call her everyday and become a complete pain in the ass. Actually I could, but the problem is that the person I'm calling is the woman who runs the entire adoption program for our district and the last thing I want to do is to get on her bad side before classes have even begun. Does that make sense???

Believe me, I understand that she's probably very busy and extremely overworked, but it takes about 5 seconds to call someone and let them know what's going on. That's all I'm looking for. I don't expect a miracle, just a little information.

End of Rant

That being said, I think Jim and I are going to start thinking about other adoption routes. Whether it be looking at private agencies, different areas, whatever...I'm not sure yet, but it's pretty clear that going through the state clearly isn't the best option at this time.

Don't worry though. We're well aware of all the scams and un-trustworthy people out there who are just looking to make a buck (like those poor families in New York last month that paid out a ton of money to adopt non-existent children....yikes) so we'll be super careful.

Speaking of children, I have to pick up my sister's pup after work today!!! I can't wait to see how it goes this weekend. I hope that he and Scooter get along OK....I'm sure there will be stories on Monday.

Have a great weekend and thanks for listening. xoxo

This isn't actually Miner, but this is what he looked like the last time I saw him a few months ago....ridiculous.

He probably looking more like this these days....

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Back in the saddle again...

And by saddle, I mean the chair at my desk.

I made it through yesterday completely unscathed. In fact, everything that people told me, turned out to be 100% true. I felt no pain and really don't remember anything about it.
Hooray for drugs!!!!

I remember meeting with the 'interview' nurse (that's what she called herself), being relocated and getting settled into the room where the procedure would be taking place, chatting with the tech, chatting with the nurse, meeting the doctor and answering a few questions he had, and then the next thing I knew, I was waking up in the recovery room.
They gave me some juice and a muffin (how cliche) and then my sister came and picked me up.

The weird thing is that I'm now remembering some stuff that happened in between waking up and arriving at my sister's house, but I'm remembering it the same way you remember stuff that happened after a drunken night on the town. I remember getting to my sister's house and having a coffee, but I have no recollection of asking for the coffee. I vaguely recall going through the drive through and giving her money to pay for it, but I don't remember her driving me there. I remember sitting on her couch and watching TV, but I don't remember the conversation we had before she left...stuff like that.

Now I can see why they don't allow you to just leave on your own.
Imagine the trouble you could get into!!!! :-)

Anyway, from what I can remember, they said that everything was OK and that someone would be in touch with me in a few days with the final results. The doctor that I went to is known for taking a biopsy every time he does these tests, so I assume that they'll wait until they have those results before getting in touch with me. The good news is that they obviously didn't find anything serious and it seems that the Prilosec (actually, the generic equivalent) is making me feel a lot better.

Jim and I are dog-sitting my sister's beagle puppy (Miner) this weekend.
THAT should be interesting. Scooter and Miner have met once before and things went OK, but that was when Miner was VERY little. I have a feeling that he's grown up some and may be closer to Scooter's size at this point. I'm sure it'll be fine and hopefully they'll get along. I'm more concerned with Miner having an accident in the house. I'm in NO mood to deal with that, but from what I hear, he's housebroken and hasn't had any accidents at home so we should be fine.

We shall see...

Have a great Thursday and thanks again for all your kind words. :-)

PS - this is what the scope looked like. Nice.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Happy Birthday PJ!!

Today is my sister PJ's birthday. She's the middle child (yes, I'm the youngest, in case you couldn't guess) and I can never remember how old she is....which I'm sure she appreciates. :-)
I probably won't see her today, but I'll definitely give her a call to say hello and wish her a happy day.

In honor of her birthday, I give you this.....which I know most of you have seen - and appreciate:

Oh Tuesday.....let's see.....there's nothing too exciting to report in my life at the moment.

I got some stuff done yesterday afternoon when I got home from work, so that was nice. I put away the Mosquito Magnet for the season, (next Spring we have to have it checked out...last time we tried turning it on, it wasn't quite working correctly and I think it needs to be repaired) took out the screens on the back porch doors and replaced them with the storm windows, brought the umbrella, the cushions for the lounge chairs and the pool toys down into the cellar and started to 'tidy up' the porch itself.

I'll do a little bit more today, so that hopefully by the end of the week it'll all be done! Then we can put up the plastic on the outside of the porch...which is always a fun job. :-)

Tomorrow is my gastroscopy, and I'm a tad nervous. I've been feeling a lot better, so I'm assuming the Prilosec is doing its job. I still have that 'odd' feeling at the back of my throat, so maybe they'll see something when they're in there searching around. If not, at least I'll know that nothing is wrong with me, and I'm just crazy. Kidding.

Of course, all I keep thinking about is going in there for this 'routine' test and never waking up again....or waking up in 10 years and not knowing that I've been 'out' for that long. That would be craziness.

Clearly I watch too much TV.

Well my friends...I must be getting back to work. Look for a post in a day or two about my 'experience' - or if you don't hear from me, check back in about 10 years or so. ;-)


Monday, October 19, 2009

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow....

When I pulled into the parking lot this morning, all the grass, bushes and trees surrounding my building were all covered in snow.

I'm NOT ready for snow yet.

When I turned on the Patriots game yesterday afternoon, I couldn't believe what I was seeing. Not only were they KILLING the Titans, but they were playing on a snow-covered field and the snow was falling like crazy. We live about 1/2 hour or so from the stadium and it was pouring at our house so I assumed it was raining there as well. Clearly, I was mistaken.

Before the game ended, (59-0, Patriots...CRAZY!!) it was snowing at our house as it was apparently a slow moving band of snow.
Scooter was in heaven...he loves when it snows out.

Anyway....I've jumped ahead in my weekend re-cap....let me jump back.

Friday night after work, Jim and I met his mother, his sister and her family and (eventually) his dad at Ye Olde Standish Grille for dinner. Due to my latest 'issues', I didn't drink anything but water and still managed to enjoy myself. Imagine that?!?!? ;-)
After dinner, Jim and I went home, cuddled up on the couch and watched TV until it was time for bed.

Saturday morning we got up, had breakfast and headed out to do some shopping. Yes, we're totally last minute shoppers - but it gets crazy during the week....back off.
We had fun shopping (even though they are selling Christmas decorations already - WHAT?!?) and then headed home to wrap up all the gifts and head out the door for Ben's 3rd birthday party.

We haven't seen those folks for a while, so it was great to see everyone and visit with all the kids at the party. They're all getting so big!!!! Ben was so well behaved, he greeted everyone at the door as they arrived and thanked them for coming to his party. Adorable.

There are some pictures below that Barrie took with her amazing, super high-tech camera that manages to make everyone look good. Love that.

We had to sneak out of the party early so that we could head into Boston to help Jim's sister get her condo back in order. Last week someone broke in and made off with a bunch of stuff, so she went out on Saturday to replace a majority of the stolen goods. Jim and I were in charge of getting her bedroom TV up and running. We made quick work of it (thankfully) and then we all had a delightful dinner with everyone. My in-laws, Jim's other sister and her family were there as it was actually a delightful dinner for 10. :-)

After dinner, Jim and I headed home, got into our pjs, and watched 'Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix'. We enjoyed it, but (naturally) I like the book so much better. they definitely did a decent job with the movie, but I missed all the stuff they couldn't include.
Oh well, that's the way it goes.

On Sunday morning, we got up and headed to the baptism of Cassidy and Cameron. We got there an hour before the service began because we were told the incorrect time...but it was fine. It allowed us to visit with our friends and see the kids for a bit.
The service was quite nice and there were a total of 7 kids being baptized. Two of the 7 were infants, but the rest were 'older' kids, ranging from about 3 years old to 10 years old.
I REALLY liked the reverend. She seemed very fun and I really enjoyed her sermon. I certainly liked it more than the church that Jim and I had been going to.
It's a congregational church (as opposed to the Episcopalian on that we were attending) so it was slightly different than what I was expecting, but I really liked it.
Have we found a new church??? We shall see.

After the baptism, we headed to Charles and Jerry's house for little party and then we headed home so that we could take care of Scooter and go grocery shopping. At this point it was POURING out so getting the groceries from the car to the house was unpleasant to say the least. Once we got everything in the house and unpacked, we ate dinner, I got everything ready for today (coffee set up and ready to go....lunches were made....dishes cleaned.....) and then we hit the couch.

And that's where this entry began....with me on the couch watching the snow-covered Patriots....

I hope your weekend was fun-filled......have a great Monday!!!!

Our host, welcoming Jim and I to the party.....

Emilee and I chatting in the kitchen.....

Jim and Michael catching up....

Ben, making sure everything is in order...

The birthday boy!!!!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Let's get this weekend started!!!!

I'm SO ready for this weekend to come.
Thanks for all your kind (and HYSTERICAL) comments on yesterday's blog entry. I couldn't stop laughing. So many of you seemed to doubt that my 5 beer total was accurate.
How interesting. :-)

The weather here is COLD and rainy...another day to be grateful that I have a job that keeps me indoors. I just got off the phone with my friend Kerry in New Hampshire, and she said it's snowing there....enough to cover the cars in her school's parking lot.
Good Lord....I am NOT ready for that yet.

Tomorrow, Jim and I are going to Ben's 3rd birthday party!!!! (Ben is the adorable child who is always showing up on my blog) I can't believe he's 3 already. It seems like it was only yesterday that they were at the airport bringing him home. VERY exciting. I'll bring my camera and take pictures....or steal them from Barrie's blog over the weekend. :-)

On Sunday, we're going to the christening of our friends Charles and Jerry's twins - Cameron and Cassidy. It was a very last minute thing (they decided on Wednesday night they were going to do it) but I'm sure it will be fun. We've never been to their church and they keep trying to get us to go, so it'll be a nice excuse for us to go.
Not that we need an excuse, but you know what I mean.

That's the excitement that we have planned this weekend. The weather is supposed to remain crappy all weekend, so I don't think we'll get around to finishing up the yard as we'd planned (putting away all the summer stuff and wrapping the screened-in porch up in plastic) but if there's a break in the weather and we're home when it happens, I'm sure we'll try to fit it in.
Have a superb weekend and I'll talk to y'all on Monday!!!!

This is Jim and I with the odd chance you forgot who Ben was :

PS - I've been kind of obsessively listening to the Original Cast Recording of 'In The Heights' since I've bee back from New York. The national tour is coming to Boston in January and I REALLY want to see it it.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Gastro.....what now????

Hello there blog-luvahs!!!

I made it through both appointments yesterday unscathed.
Another cavity-free visit!!

What I neglected to admit yesterday was that I also had a doctor’s appointment early this morning.
Since last Friday night, I’ve been a victim of what I’ll simply call ‘Upper GI Discomfort’.

I initially thought it was due to my acting like a 21 year old over the weekend at the softball tournament, but when I wasn’t feeling any better by Monday morning I decided to pay a visit to my local nurse practitioner. My PCP wasn’t available until November 6th and I was NOT waiting that long.
I wasn’t displaying any severe symptoms; just mostly uncomfortable ‘stuff’ like heartburn, not really being hungry, and the feeling like something was in the back of my throat at all times. Like I said, nothing painful, I just wasn’t feeling ‘right’ and was pretty uncomfortable, especially when eating.

I went in this morning and met with my super-nice nurse practitioner. I went into great detail about my ‘issues’ and we had a nice chat.
She gave me a prescription for Prilosec in order to (hopefully) make me feel better, they gave me an EKG (which came back totally fine) and sent me off to schedule an appointment to have a Gastroscopy done.
Apparently, that’s when they sedate you and jam a scope down your throat so they can see what’s going on inside your throat and tummy.
Are you jealous yet???

I scheduled that little procedure for next Wednesday, so we’ll see how that goes. I can’t drive home afterwards, but I’m hoping that they’ll let me walk around the corner to my sister’s house and crash there until I’m ‘over it’. The hospital’s parking lot backs right up to the fence in her back yard…it’s that close.
Of course, if they can’t ‘allow’ that, I’ll just take a cab around the corner and piss off some cabbie.
She also mentioned that my blood pressure was a little high and I should have my sister (PJ, the nurse) check it at some point within the week, just to be sure it’s nothing to worry about. It was 130/100, but she said that could have been due to the fact that the only thing I had this morning was coffee, but either way, she didn’t seem all that concerned about it.

Not only am I looking more and more like my Dad every day, but I'm CLEARLY adopting all of his health issues as well. Awesome.

A couple of other ‘fun’ things that happened while I was there this morning:

After stepping on the scale and being faced with my actual weight (I haven't weighed myself in God only knows how long) I said “Oh. Wow.” and she replied “I’m surprised….you certainly don’t look it.”


Also – it has become very clear to me that EKGs are NOT designed for those of us with hairy chests. OUCH.

I’ll keep you posted with any updates…….Happy Thursday!!!!

PS – I was a little bit horrified admitting to her that I drank a lot on Friday night, which was when all this really started.

Nurse Practitioner: So, on Friday – how many beers did you have?
Me: Ummmm, I’m not sure, but it was more than 2.
Nurse Practitioner: So, like three?
Me: Well….I wasn’t driving and we were staying at the hotel, so it was probably closer to 4…….or 5.
Nurse Practitioner: Oh….so you had about 5 beers.
Me: Ummm…...yeah.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Hump.....or Death?

Happy Hump Day!

I've got a jam-packed day ahead.

First I've got to get through work.
After work I'm meeting with the local arborist (yes, I use fancy-pants words such as arborist) to get some estimates on tree removal for a 'troublesome' tree or two in our side yard. We've got one tree that is d-e-a-d and we're afraid that it's going to fall and do some damage to either our yard or our neighbors yard. That's one that we definitely want to get rid of. I'm also going to get an estimate on how much it would cost to get rid of the gigantic pine tree that's right next to the fence surrounding our pool area. It's really annoying and the bottom quarter of it is pretty much dead as well....ugly, unappealing, and irritating.

Truth be told, we'd like to get rid of all but one of the trees in that side yard, since all they do is cause us grief and they're really not to pretty to look at. I have no idea what kind of trees they are, but they're not attractive. It's not as if they're big, beautiful maple trees or a magnificent oaks....they look like giant weeds that were left unattended for years and years.

I'll be curious to see what kinds they actually are. Hopefully the arborist will offer some advice.

After my meeting with the arborist, I have a dentist appointment. YAY!
And by "YAY!" I mean I'm filled with terror.

Actually it's not going to be that bad. My dental hygienist it super nice, but she is thorough and really good at your job. In other words, I leave there in pain. Not excruciating pain, but my teeth and gums are a bit tender when I leave the office. However, she gets the job done and she is always very happy with my progress. I have always had teeth 'issues', but ('knock on wood') it's been a long time since I've had any cavities or work done - which is great.

That's my exciting day!
Work - Arborist - Dentist.

Good times.

Anyone know what today's blog title is from?
I'll give you a huge hint:

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Back to life, back to reality...

Happy Tuesday everyone!!!

I'm back to work after a long, but fun weekend. It's rainy and cold out, which makes me very happy that I have an indoor, office-type job. On days like this I'm glad I'm not outside delivering mail or building something. That would be yucky.

The softball tournament in RI was a LOT of fun, but unfortunately we didn't do too well from a softball perspective. :-)
Due to a rain delay, the Round Robin games on Saturday morning (to determine our seeding) were super quick and were 'One Pitch' games. I'd never played a game like that before. The way it works is that they throw you one pitch and that's it. You either swing at it or let it go by. If you hit it and it's fair, you run. If you miss, it's a strike and you're out. If you let it go by and it's a strike, you're out and if you let it go by and it's a ball, you take your base.
Those are your options. CRAZY.
Needless to say, it was a tad nerve wracking, but it certainly made for a quick game!! Not to mention the fact that they were limited to a half hour to begin with. Yikes.

Anyway...we lost both games in the Round Robin, won our first game in the Double Elimination round and then lost our second game (the 4th game of the day for us on Saturday). After playing all those games, I was SOOO tired and ready for bed. A bunch of us went out to dinner and I opted to go back to the hotel and go right to bed after dinner. It was an excellent choice.

We got up on Sunday morning, played one more game and lost. That was our second loss, so we were totally out of the tournament at that point. I stuck around and watched once more game and then headed back home.
Even though we played pretty poorly overall, we had a lot of fun. We had a few players from other teams in the Boston league that joined us for this tournament, which is always fun. A big shout out to Jon, Brian, Chris, Justin and Darryll for playing with us....I think they all had a good time and if I forgot anyone...ooops.

On Sunday night, Jim and I went to a local benefit/pasta dinner with his entire family, which was very fun. After dinner (and a very disappointing Patriot's game) Jim and I met up with everyone back at his sister's house for more drinks and a quick board game. I forget the name of it, but it was really fun. Hmmmm....I'll have to get back to you on that one.

Yesterday, Jim and I both had the day off so we put away all our summer clothes and brought out the fall/winter wear. After that, we went out to the store, bought a new bird feeder for the backyard (I love bird feeders) as well as a few pumpkins and mums for our 'fall display' in front of the house. I'll take a picture and post it here at some point....really, I will. It looks very autumnal and festive. I like it.

When we got back inside, we discovered the ghost had paid us another visit. :-)
OK - I'll put it this way....we noticed some more 'weird' stuff, in the front living room that we couldn't exactly explain.
There were the remains of a shattered light bulb sitting on the table, which had clearly come from the lamp sitting on the table. When Jim went to remove the rest of the bulb from the lamp, he asked me to unplug it, but it was already unplugged. Do light bulbs just shatter for no reason? In an unplugged lamp? Maybe they do....but if they do, are all the pieces sitting neatly on the table, below the lamp? With nothing on the floor? Weird.
Also, we noticed that the digital picture frame in the room was turned on. Neither Jim nor I turned it on, and we know it wasn't on when we were in there switching around our clothes earlier that morning. One of the barn stars we have hanging on our wall had fallen off the wall and was sitting on the day bed beneath it, but since that's happened a couple times before, I'm not blaming that on the ghost....just a bad nail.
The last odd thing is that while Jim was sitting in the room, documenting the latest 'incident' in the 'house journal' that we're keeping, Scooter was sitting on a chair in the corner, turned his back to Jim and was sitting there, staring at the corner of the ceiling until Jim called his name and he finally looked away. Very interesting.....

Well, my peeps.....I need to get myself back into 'work mode' and get some stuff accomplished.

Have a great day...I'm happy to be home. :-)

PS - My car is all fixed! (at least for now it is) I brought it in to be looked at on Friday afternoon, and it turns out that when the kid gave me a new antennae to replace the recalled one, he replaced it with the exact same, recalled type of antennae. Awesome.
So, I actually never got rid of the 'bad' one....I just got a new, 'bad' one installed. This new guy put in the correct (non-recalled) antennae and it's been just about 4 days without my car starting on its own once....which is a huge improvement.

PPS - Thanks for all the 'glee' comments. You've all convinced me to stick with it and give it a few more chances. We'll see what happens.


Thursday, October 8, 2009

There's no glee in 'glee'....

As most of you know, (or would assume from reading my blog) the Fox TV show 'glee' was something that I have been looking forward to from the moment I first heard about it. I was so excited for the pilot last Spring, and hoped it would take off and being a huge success this fall.

Well, let's just say that I'm MORE than disappointed in the show up to this point.
I'm not sure what they're thinking, but in my opinion (obviously, since I'm the one writing this) the creators have created the most unappealing cast of characters imaginable. In order for me (and most people) to enjoy something, there has to be someone you either relate to or at the very least, like about the people you're watching on the screen.
That being said....I barely like any of the characters up to this point and I have no interest at all in what happens to them. Who am I supposed to root for? The music teacher who's a total jerk to his wife? The music teacher's wife who's a huge bitch? Should I be excited about the idiotic guidance counselor who's now engaged to the equally stupid coach? Or should I maybe be rooting for one of repugnant high school students? The only person that I've even found the slightest bit humorous is the gym teacher, played by Jane Lynch. But even then, from the beginning, I assumed that she was going to be the typical 'bad guy that we all would love to hate'. Unfortunately, the cast seems to be full of them and as a result, she's just added to the list of characters to despise. It seems that the majority of the characters are 'bad guys' and rotten people that I would want nothing to do with.
I will say one positive thing. Jane Lynch's character does manage to make me laugh at times....if I HAD to pick a favorite cast member, it would be her.

I'm just so disappointed that a show I was looking forward to loving has annoyed me so much.
I guess I'll just go back to watching 'Criminal Minds' each week during that time slot and watch all the 'glee' musical numbers on YouTube. At least I don't hate THEM......yet.

On a more positive note, I'm not working tomorrow or Monday!!!! I'm heading down to Providence, RI for the weekend to play in a softball tournament. :-)
I'm sad to be leaving Jim and Scooter, but I'll be back on Sunday night so it's not that long of a trip. I'm also a tad nervous to be back out there playing again. I haven't touched a softball since our last game on July 12th. Yikes. We have practice tonight, so 'm hoping I can dust off all the cob webs and remember how to play.

Have a great weekend and thanks for letting me complain. :-)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

'Sorry, Wrong Number!'

No, not this one....

THIS one

'Sorry, Wrong Number' is a benefit that takes place each year at SpeakEasy Stage Company in Boston where several members of the Boston theatre community perform musical numbers that they would normally NEVER perform.
For example: a small white woman belting out 'And I'm Telling You' from 'Dreamgirls'

Well, Jim and I went to see it last night and had a GREAT time. We knew several people in the show, which always makes things more fun, but even so - there was some stuff they came up with that was SOOO funny and creative. It was great to see all those talented folks in one show together. Let me tell you, some of those people can S-I-N-G. Of course, everyone that was a part of it is super-talented, but there were some people that were new to me who really impressed me a whole lot.
I highly suggest it if you're in the Boston area and are looking for something to do tonight.
Tonight is the final performance and it's a great way to help out local theatre company that always produces top-of-the-line theatre and lots of great shows.
If you're interested, click here for more information.
Here ends my shameless plug-of-the day. :-)

So, that's what WE did last night....

Tonight we're having our friends Charles and Jerry and their 3 year old twins over for dinner.

I'm sure it'll be very exciting. Hopefully Scooter will keep the kids entertained, so the adults can sit and drink.

I'm kidding!!!!! (a little)
Have a great day, blog lovers!!!!

Monday, October 5, 2009

M-o-n-d-a-y = b-l-a-h

It's Monday....and it definitely feels like a Monday.

I'm so tired and could have used a few more hours of sleep last night. However, I had a fantabulous weekend!!!

The 'pool people' came on Friday and basically said that we were fine to close the pool. Yahoo! They said that if there was indeed a leak, it wasn't severe enough to warrant a full inspection at this time (which would cost a lot of money) and we would be fine with waiting until the Spring to deal with it. Hopefully they're right, and when we open it up in the Spring we aren't staring at a completely empty pool. That would be terrible.

Friday night, Jim and I met up with K, B and B for dinner and 'catch-up'. It's been quite a while since we've seen them, so we had a lot to talk about. Ben was SO well-behaved (as always) it was great. I hope that when we have our child (someday....someday...) he's as well behaved as Ben is. It's like having a little adult at the table with you, and not an (almost) three year old.

On Saturday, Jim and I got up early, cleaned the house, and got out all the Halloween decorations!!! It's so much fun decorating the house. Now, we're not completely decorating lunatics, but we like to have fun. I'll take some pictures and post them this week. Fun!

My friend Kerry from NH (college friend) came down for the afternoon and spent the rest of the day with us. It was so much fun visiting with her. We took her to Ye Olde Standish Grille (which, as you know, is our favorite 'townie' restaurant) for lunch and then she went along with us grocery shopping. Who says we don't know how to entertain our company?!?!?

It's funny, because Kerry is always talking about how much she despises grocery shopping, yet I'm always telling her how much fun Jim and I have when we go. I wanted to show her that it's true, and shopping can be fun!!!! That, and the fact that we really needed to get the weekly shopping done and Saturday was the only time we could do it. :-)

After the shopping excursion, we went back to our house and hung out for a little bit longer, talking, laughing and more laughing. Jim and I had plans to go to a little cocktail party at our friend's Charles and Jerry's house later that night, so Kerry dropped me off at their house on her way back home. (Jim had left earlier, and took my car over so I was meeting him) There were only 6 of us at their house (Jim and I and two other couples) but even though it was a small group, we had a lot of fun, food, and cocktails!!!

Sunday morning we got up and had breakfast, then my friends Ken and Matt came over to drop off all the food/supplies for the BBQ we were having that afternoon after playing PAINTBALL!!
It's been an annual event for the past few years, but this was the first time I was available to attend. Since the paintball place was closer to our house than anyone else's (they mostly live closer to Boston, and the paintball place is about 20 minutes from our house) Jim and I offered to host the 'post-paintball' BBQ. It was a group of about 15-16 guys from the softball league and we had SUCH a great time.
If you've never played paintball, I highly suggest it. It's very fun, exciting, and little nerve wracking....but in a good way. I would suggest that you wear layers though, because those suckers hurt when they hit you. Obviously it's not THAT painful, but you can definitely feel it!! I'm more sore today from running around and crouching behind the obstacles on the courses than I am from being hit with paintballs.
The BBQ was very fun. There were a few people who couldn't make it to paintball, but met up with us at the house for the BBQ, which was very nice. They're such a fun group of guys and we always have a great time with them.
As I said at the beginning of this epic of an entry, I could have used about three more hours of sleep....but I plan on making up for that over the next few nights. I definitely plan on going to bed EARLY!!!
I hope you all had great weekends, and have a fantastic Monday!!!!

Here are a couple of pictures that Barrie took from dinner on Friday night....
The two lefties coloring

(Barrie was the only right-handed person at the table, but we let her stay.)

I was pretending to steal Ben's drink...

Say cheese!!!!!

Friday, October 2, 2009

One down, a few more to go...

Jim's car is fixed!
And it only cost us $170. Granted, that ain't pocket change, but it could have been a lot worse. Apparently he needed a new battery (so much for my theory...I'll stick to software testing, thank you) so for the new battery, having the car towed, and labor - the total was $170.

The 'pool people' are coming today, so we'll see how THAT goes.
Have I told you all about my automatic car starter drama? Long story short, (I'll try, anyway) Jim got me an automatic car starter for my birthday (in February of this year) - we had it installed and all was going great. Well, after a while, I noticed that the damn car was starting on it's own - without me even touching the remote! This has been going on for a while, so I FINALLY called Best Buy and asked them about it. Apparently the antennae for the system I had installed was recalled because there were reports that it could be activated by several other things (cell phones, etc...etc...).
Well, I brought my car in to have them replace the antennae a couple of weeks ago and everything should have been fine. I say 'should have been' because it is NOT working. My damn car is still starting on its own God only knows how many times a day.
SOOO irritating. Granted, it's on a timer, so that if it starts on it's own and I'm not around to 'catch it' - it'll shut off after 12 minutes, but COME ON!!!! I seriously do not need my car running by itself. I have to call Best Buy again and get this thing taken care of. As if I have nothing better to do.
Since I've bitched and complained, I'll make it up to you by posting some pictures of the cuties I saw in 'Hair' on's the least I can do.....

This is Gavin Creel...he plays Claude. Not only is he totally cute, but he's a great actor and has an AMAZING voice. He spent a lot of time during the finale about 3 feet from was fun.

This is Bryce Ryness...he played Woof, and was excellent as well. Great voice and SO funny.

This is Sasha Allen, Steel Burkhardt, and Megan Lawrence. You may recognize Sasha from the movie 'Camp'....she was majorly featured in the show and sounds INCREDIBLE in everything she sang. Steel is one of the understudies for Berger and went on the night I saw the show. He did a great job and I wouldn't have known he wasn't the original if I weren't the Broadway freak that I am. Super talented....and sexy as all get out. Megan Lawrence is no longer in the show, so I didn't see her....but I know she's a big ball of talent as well. Their faces (and Steel's chest) are painted because this was taken at a rally for Marriage Equality and the cast was their showing their support and having fun. There is no body paint in 'Hair' :-)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Happy October!

Wow. I seriously can not believe that it’s October already. I suppose that’s what happens when you have a busy September that includes a week and a half long vacation.

Anyway, it’s October and I vow to be a better blogger this month.

So….work has been so busy lately that I’ve been working like a loon. That’s partially why my blogging has slacked off a bit. I may try and adjust my ‘blog schedule’ so that I’m catching up on my friend’s blogs and tending to my own blog entries at night, as opposed to during the day.
What a concept, huh? I’m still undecided about that though. It’ll have to depend on what work is like over the next few weeks.

Nothing too exciting has been going on this week, although to be honest, I’ve been feeling a bit stressed lately.

Poor Jim was sick at the beginning of the week but he’s feeling MUCH better now and is back to work.
His car is giving us grief and is being looked at today by the local mechanic (who’s a long-time friend of Jim’s family). Initially we thought it was an issue with his battery, but I have a feeling that his starter is gone. Whatever it is, I’m hoping that it won’t be too expensive. Fingers crossed.
Adding to my stress is the fact that our pool is being closed this week. Normally it’s not a big deal, but I’ve noticed that the water level is getting lower and lower as the weeks go by. I’m pretty sure that there’s a leak of some sort and that is sending me into a panic. I’ve come to learn that NOTHING associated with pool repairs is cheap and the thought of having to repair a leak makes me nervous. I’m hoping that it’s a minor repair and something they can take care of quickly so that we can get it fixed and close up the pool for the winter.
On Sunday, Jim and I are ‘playing’ (is that the right term???) paintball with a bunch of softball friends and we’re hosting a BBQ afterwards. This too, has me a tiny bit stressed. We have to get the house and yard in order and I’m feeling a little bit overwhelmed about that as well. Not to mention the fact that it’s supposed to be rainy all weekend and it’s very likely that we’ll have a house full of rain-soaked, paint-covered gay men this Sunday.
Hold on….that actually doesn’t sound that bad. :-)

OK – let me think…..we’ll probably find out about the car situation this afternoon or tomorrow morning at the latest and the pool people are coming tomorrow, so those questions will be answered as well. Jim got paid yesterday and I get paid tomorrow, so if we have to spend more money than we were planning on spending, at least it’ll be there to spend. We have all day Saturday to clean and get everything in order…and to top it all of - every gathering we’ve had with our softball friends always ends up totally laid-back and a good time, so there’s really nothing to be stressed about, right?!?!?!?

Ahhh….I feel MUCH better….isn’t blogging nice?

Happy October to one and all.

PS - this was me last, I completey forgot. :-)