Sunday, November 28, 2010

Hooray for organization!!

Thank you to whoever invented these awesome shoe storage things because they work great for storing craft punches!! I used to store these in a drawer and honestly I never remembered what I had and now that they are out so I can see them I feel like I will use them so much more!! I got this storage idea on another blog that I happened to stumble upon and I had been looking for the shoe storage with the clear plastic so that I could see my punches!! Thank you, Walmart. :)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

We had a really nice Thanksgiving meal this year even though Robert was missing from our table, we made the best of it and we did get to chat with him earlier in the day online so that was good. I have to say that I am not the Suzy homemaker so I am very grateful for boxes and cans and quite honestly everyone loved everything and there wasn't much leftovers. 01 I was happy that the turkey I chose was just about the right size for all of us and it turned out well, there is always that worry of overcooking and it being dry but it was very good. 02 The rest of the fixins’ turned out well, I made the usual green bean casserole, mashed potatoes with gravy, stuffing and sweet potato casserole and I couldn’t decide if I should use the pecan streusel or the marshmallow topping so I just used half of each and let everyone decide what they wanted to have.

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After dinner was all cleaned up and everyone was watching football and relaxing I decided to finish wrapping all of the holiday gifts so that we would be all ready to roll when we leave for our trip to Virginia to celebrate with Nancy, Paul and Cole since they will be in Montana for Christmas this year we decided to get together early to exchange gifts and spend time together.

I am really happy that I was able to use some of mom’s pretty ribbon that she had stored in her closet at her house. I discovered the ribbon when we were unpacking everything that was brought here from her place and I hoped that I would be able to use it one day. I think it makes the packages look so festive!

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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Report card!

Just in case a certain big brother passes through my blog to check out the happenings back home I thought I would post this for you (and all) to see. Alex's report card came in the mail today. I would have to say that he earned that Christmas present he asked for, don't you? His lowest grade was an 82 and that was in music class...hahaha, that just made me laugh, last year his lowest grade was in art!! Now when you have a musician for a dad (who also happens to be an artist) and a mom who is pretty crafty and loves to scrapbook it is just too funny that his lowest grades would be in those subjects but I guess we'll deal with it.

Either way we are very proud of him for doing so well, especially given the fact that he has asked no
t to take his strattera anymore and we agreed to try it out for the beginning of the school year.

Jim was home yesterday and worked on raking more leaves, it seems like a never ending battle every year...these trees are getting bigger and bigger!! I am really happy that he made a nice sliding gate with a leftover piece of lattice we had laying around so that Pookie stays away from Daisy and won't try to attack her or eat her food! Sadly she is old and can't see well and in recent months has started going to the bathroom wherever she feels like it so we have had to keep her in the back room with Daisy but make separate areas for each of them. I think the last straw for me was when she pooped on top of 2 of my blankets that I keep folded under a table in the living room and before that I would constantly find her on top of the dining room just got to be too much to constantly having to be cleaning up after her.

I spent a little bit of time ton
ight working on the centerpieces that I am doing for our staff holiday party/meeting at work. I am enjoying the process of putting them together and I have been using both my Sizzix and my new Cricut Expression. I am making 10 of the centerpieces and there are 2 other people that are making other designs so that we will have a total of 30 centerpieces. Our theme this year is candyland. I will take another photo when I am completely done with all of them, I still have to add the glitter to the swirls and then glue everything on and put the rest of the "candy" in the vases.

Well I think it's about time to go relax and watch the Season Finale of Dancing with the Stars. Goodnight...............

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday and the start of the Thanksgiving week

I think I'm ready for Thanksgiving, all except for the fact that Robert won't be with us this year. Yesterday Jim and Alex went to spend some time with Jack and while they were gone I prepared a zucchini bake to have with our Sunday dinner. The rotisserie chicken I picked up at Sam's Club was delicious, they make the best chicken there and it is really cheap!

Jesse was doing his laundry when I got home and he sat and ate with us, I was impressed that he ate the zucchini bake and wanted the recipe but he's going to make it with chicken instead of the zucchini, he's not a big fan of vegetables but at least he tried it.

The library newsletter came in the mail and imagine my surprise when I turned to the back page and saw this photo!! Yea that kid in the photo next to the librarians is my Jesse. :-) We have started some new programs for our "In betweens" or 18-24 year old patrons, when they 'age out' of the teen department they have no where to go and expressed an interest in having programs geared just for them and my library rocks so hard that of course we had to do something. They have been having game nights and Magic the Gathering nights among other things. Even though Jesse is a bit older my department head wanted him to come and bring some of his friends so that the program could get off the ground and he seemed to have a good time.

We've been very busy weeding old material to shift books and make a space for this age group to be able to hang out in and call their own, I cannot wait to see how it all turns out for them. I will be sure to post photos when that happens.

Well, I guess it's about time to go relax with my book and wait for the season finale of Dancing with the Stars. I also plan to check out Skating with the Stars and see if that is worth watching...hey nothing else on until the new season of American Idol starts in January so I might as well check it out, right?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

November 2010

The first week of November was jam packed full of fun and I was really excited that I would be attending 2 concerts that week!!  Our friend, Michael Lombardo, plays bass guitar in a band called “Miggs” and they were playing down on Houston Street on November the 4th and I couldn’t wait!  Jim and I were really hoping to spend a little time chatting with Michael this time around because the last time they came through NY and played at the Boulton Center we really didn’t get to visit with him because he was stuck behind the Meet and Greet table signing and the line was long.


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It was a great evening and we were able to spend time with Michael for a while and that was the best part for Jim, I think.  As for me I had been listening to the Miggs CD since I bought it the last time we saw them so it was really fun to be able to sing along now that I knew some of their music.  Jim used to work with Michael and his dad many years ago and they played music together and he used to always tell Jim that some day he would do something with music and that he wasn’t going to work construction all his life.  Fast forward many years later and Jim found Michael on Facebook (a social networking site) and was really excited and happy for him that he is making music and touring with a band and he is able to do it for a living. 




 The following day my friend, Sandi, came out to visit me because I had tickets to see the band, “Sons of Sylvia” open for Carrie Underwood (she won American Idol on Season 4)  Now if you read my last entry you will remember that I mentioned “The Clarks Brothers” that mom and I watched on The Next Great American Band.  I had lost track of what happened to these young brothers but as I was watching American Idol this past season Carrie Underwood came on the show and introduced, “A great talented band who will coming out on tour with me, “Sons of Sylvia” and when they came out on stage I couldn’t believe it because it was the Clark Brothers and they had changed the name of their band!  The tour was coming to the Nassau Coliseum and I picked up a pair of tickets that originally was supposed to be for me and my friend, Paula, but she couldn’t make it and as luck would have it Sandi was more than happy to step in and buy Paula’s ticket.  We really had a great time together and since we decided not to stay for the whole concert (the look on the security guards faces as we were leaving, “We only came to see the opening band!!” was priceless) we got back to my house early and Sandi decided to drive home instead of spending the night.  I hope I get to see “SOS” again sometime and maybe as a headliner and not an opening band.  Sandi and I made our way to the Meet and Greet table pretty fast after their set was over and we were able to have a photo taken with them.  Ashley, Austin and Adam Clark were super nice to us and I know that mom would have been really excited for me.





On monday, the 8th of November, I went to the movie theatre to see a showing of a Bon Jovi concert with 2 of my friends, Brenda and Eileen.  This was a national event and it was being shown in 500 theatres across the country.  It was loads of fun and we went out to dinner before hand which was really nice.  I’ve really been struggling the past few weeks with my TMJ disorder but somehow I get through everything and I have to say that the music always helps me get through the day if I have an especially painful one.


Alex has been going to the Illustrator’s workshop at the library every friday for quite a while now and on November 12th there was an Art and Photography Showcase and it was really nice to see all of the art that the teens in our community have created.  Alex didn’t get to finish his sketch in time for the showcase but he did have several photographs displayed.  Here he is with a picture of a rabbit he took when we went to Disneyworld this past summer.   He was really proud of this because he got down and crawled on his belly to get close enough to get this shot of the rabbit in the grass at our hotel.  He told me that Mr. Casper (the librarian who runs this program) taught him how to get down to the level of the subject to get a photo like this.  I love that our library has programs like this for our young teens.



As we get closer to Thanksgiving and the holiday season I am bearing down for the long cold winter.  I really do love this time of year when the leaves change colors because it is a beautiful sight to see Mother Nature in action but I do not look forward to what comes after that…once the trees are bare and we have to deal with snow and ice I long for the warm summer days.


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Amazingly enough…due to the sometimes horrible insomnia I suffer from because of my TMJ disorder I am up to date on my blog at the moment.  It is early on sunday morning of the 21st of November and yesterday I had a great afternoon shopping with my friend, Eileen, at the Tanger outlets at the Arches in Deer Park.  We spent our $50 gift card that we got on The View from Tommy Hilfiger and we both got a purse and a purple sweatshirt.  Later on today I will be going to AC Moore to see what I can snag with the 60% OFF coupon I got that is good for today only.  For now…I am going to try to go back to bed and sleep for a bit.  Happy November and Thanksgiving to all!!

October 2010 Happenings!

So here we are in the middle of November and I thought I would get started on my blog post for last month.  Yeah, I’m always behind but at least I eventually get caught up, right?  I still continue to write these blog entries for the purpose of catching up on life and keeping an online ‘journal’ if you will so that I can use it for scrapbook pages later on. 


Do you have a “Bucket List”?  I sort of have one in my head but recently I have decided that I needed to complete my mom’s bucket list…she had several things that she always hoped she would do and we talked about it from time to time over the years.  So here is what I think my beloved mom’s bucket list would include on it…and I am only going to list the things that I knew of…I am sure there were more but I also know that she did get to complete some of it (like her trip to Hawaii).


1. Concerts.  Mom said to me once, “Before I die I want to see Rod Stewart, Kenny Rogers and Tina Turner”  Ok, I took mom to see Rod Stewart in Orlando back in 2003, she almost didn’t go because at the time my stepdad was in the hospital but the nurses convinced her to go and have a good time and said that her husband was in good hands!    I don’t know if I’ll manage to finish out her other 2 but one never knows. 


2. TV Shows.  The View and Dr Oz were 2 of mom’s favorite shows ever!!  She also adored the Oprah Winfrey show and rarely missed an episode.  I have set my DVR to tape every episode this season and at some point will watch them all in honor of mom.


3. Reality TV.  Mom and I were big fans of these shows.  We watched “The Next Great American Band” and absolutely adored The Clarks Brothers and were thrilled when they won!!  We watched American Idol and Dancing with the Stars religiously…over the years we would sometimes watch together over the phone or when someone did really well on AI and my phone would ring I knew when I picked it up it would be mom on the other end, “OH MY GOD THAT WAS FANTASTIC!”  :)  I miss that, for sure and I got a bit emotional this past season when the opening credits music started to play because I knew that mom wouldn’t be ‘watching’ with me this year.


So…having said all of that above I have been on a quest to scratch one thing of mom’s bucket list and that is to attend a taping of THE VIEW and finally after 3 attempts it happened on October 6th!!  Woooo!!  I suppose the first 2 times just weren’t meant to be, I have to look at things in perspective and know that everything happens for a reason because that morning I didn’t get in as a standby for the 1st taping and again I thought I would be turned away even though I had #11 on the line but when we went back we were told that we would be guaranteed to get in for the 2nd taping so my friend, Eileen, and I decided to stick around and wait for that.   Imagine my shock and surprise when they said that one of the guests on that 2nd show was Emeril Lagasse!!  Wow, mom just loved him and I was really excited that I would get to see him live!  We went back at our designated time to arrive for the 2nd taping and finally after much waiting we were brought inside and seated!! I was surprised how much smaller it looks in person compared to watching it on TV.  It was Fashion Friday and Tommy Hilfiger was there, as well.  Just a few pictures to share. 


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Here I am with my ticket to get in (finally!!!) and a picture of our giveaways!!  We got $100 to spend on Emeril’s catalog, a $50 gift card from Tommy Hilfiger (that might get me a pair of socks at his store, right?) LOL!!  Also we received a gift bag from Pillsbury with products from their “Sweet Moments” new refrigerated Brownie bites.  A great day, all in all and I am so happy that I was finally able to get into the show and scratch something off mom’s bucket list in the process!!


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October 8th was a much anticipated evening for me because I have had these tickets for almost a year now, after seeing The Lord of the Rings-The Fellowship last year at Radio City I couldn’t wait to snag my tickets to the 2nd installment which was this year.  The film is played in its entirety on the big screen while the score is performed live by a symphony orchestra and choir on the stage.  This is quite an amazing experience and I look forward to next year when the 3rd and final film (and quite simply my favorite of the 3!) will be done.  Bring on “The Return of the King”  Ahhhh…."Sons of Gondor, of Rohan, my brothers. I see in your eyes the same fear that would take the heart of me. A day may come when the courage of men fails, when we forsake our friends and break all bonds of fellowship, but it is not this day. An hour of woes and shattered shields, when the age of men comes crashing down, but it is not this day. This day we fight! By all that you hold dear on this good Earth, I bid you *stand, Men of the West!*”—Aragorn




 The following weekend I went to spend some time with my Cole.  Nancy had asked me to come visit this particular weekend a while back because on friday there was a boat show that she and Paul wanted to check out and I am always willing to watch my little Cole and get some quality time with him!!  I took the Megabus this time and it was a really relaxing ride down for me, I read my book and had my dinner that I had packed (yummy avocado sandwich) and took a nap and before you know it I was pulling into the parking lot in Washington DC and Paul was there to pick me up.  Nancy and Paul set out on friday morning and I planned out my day with Cole!!  Thanks to Al Gore’s internet I found a Chuck E Cheese nearby and thought it would be fun to take Cole there to play.  He had a good time walking around and checking out the place and he was really interested in seeing everything but when I lifted him up on the rides it was a whole different story….poor little man was scared of Bob the Builder and yes…..he was having none of it so I had to take him off there pretty quick!! 




So from there I just let him walk around and he gravitated off to the Skee Ball and I put a token in and off he went with the balls…it was really cute!!  We stopped off to check out some big orange things that looked like fun to touch and then back home we went for our lunch and our nap.  After nap time we went out to the mall to walk around…wow…the mall I went to was huge…and I got a nice 30 minute walk in before heading home to play and get ready for dinner.  It made me think of when Jesse was a baby and I used to take him to the mall to just walk around…Cole loves to “people watch” just like his Aunt Linda.  :)

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On Saturday there was a community garage sale going on so Nancy and I took Cole out for a walk and checked out what people were selling…it really was a beautiful day out and I enjoyed walking around with Cole who was just a beginning walker…exercise is so good and fresh air is the best!!  :)  I hated to leave on Sunday morning because I knew I wouldn’t see them again until December but I was really glad to have made some good memories this weekend. 


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October 23rd was a gorgeous day with bright blue skies and warm fall breezes.  We decided it was time to find the perfect pumpkin to carve and off we went to the farm to have some family time.  We ate roasted corn and enjoyed the festivities while Alex tried to find the biggest pumpkin ever!  It was really pretty funny because he could barely lift it but he had to have it!  He didn’t do the corn maze this year, he wanted to have another piece of roasted corn instead which was fine with us.  :) 


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The day before Halloween I was scheduled to work what is one of the biggest events at the library, the annual Italian luncheon for our seniors.  It was the first time that I had the opportunity to work this program and I truly had a blast!! There is music and food and just overall a great time was had by all.  Here I am with some of my friends from work…from left to right…Jessyka, myself, Mat, Natasha, Mandy, Elizabeth and Ellen.  We truly spoil our older patrons on this day, we serve them at their tables and get them whatever they need, they never have to get up.  There was ziti and meatballs, coffee and cake and cookies.  Yummy!!


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Halloween with a teenager….what to do?  Well for  me it was an opportunity to spend time with my son and take him to see a Broadway show!!  Every year the Broadway League sponsor’s “Kids Night on Broadway” and I couldn’t have been more thrilled because the new show, “Rain-A Beatles Tribute” opened the week of Halloween so I snagged up a pair of tickets so that I could take Alex!!  His ticket was free and I got us 8th row and we had a great view of the stage!   What was great about this event is that everyone with a theatre ticket that day had free admission to Madame Tussauds wax museum and I was really happy to be able to get in and check it out since I had never been before.   Alex was actually a bit scared of some of the wax statues because they look so real and I had to real coax him at first to get some photos with a few of them but he was more than willing to stand next to these guys!!  As we rounded the corner he said, “There’s the boys!!”  


I think this is about the closest I will get to fulfilling one of mom’s dreams, too bad Alex wasn’t doing too well with the camera today but it’s ok.  Who knows…maybe Tina Turner will tour again sometime in her 70’s…she was 68 on her last tour a couple of years ago.


02    We really had a great day and Alex loved the show and sang along to every song which was fantastic…I had more fun watching him, quite frankly!  The mom and daughter sitting next to us were dressed in homemade Sgt Pepper outfits and it was really cool to see all of the kids enjoying music that their parents grew up on.  The performer who plays “Paul” had all of the kids stand up at one point and we all applauded them for embracing musical theatre and great music from the past.


We got home in time for Alex to do a bit of Trick or Treating with 2 of his friends and it was the end to a perfect day for us and a great way to finish out the month of October!!