Friday, December 29, 2006
My husband and Fern went to the 'Zards game tonight and Kev and I went to the mall. I had to exchange some headphones at the Apple store, the left ear had gone out. We dined at the food court, he Chick-fil-A, and I chose the chicken salad sandwich at Arby's. He was good, only disappeared a few times, each to a nearby escalator so I knew where he was. When he was about 5 or so we lost him, had no idea where he was. Even got mall security to help us. As it turns out, he had gone into the Right Start baby store. We'd only been in there once before, but he has an astonishing memory and knew they had cool things to look at. Now he hovers around me while I shop and I don't worry too much.
I'm reading Something Dangerous by Penny Vincenzi these days. It's the second of a British family saga trilogy. The first book, No Angel, covers 1904 to 1920, World War I. This book covers 1928 to 1946, World War II. Vincenzi is a British writer and therefore the spellings are British as well as the language. It's a different language style than the British version of Harry Potter so I can't figure out if that's her regular writing style or she is also using the style of the day, the time frame about which it's written. In any event, they are good reads so far and I recommend them. I'm even keeping a tally of the children conceived out of wedlock so far. (6!)
Thursday, December 28, 2006
My great present this year was a certificate to golf school in South Carolina in a couple weeks from my darling husband. He's a great gift-giver.
I really enjoyed hearing Fern squeal when she opened her gifts. CG/AM got her some saxophone music, big squeal there. The new camera from her grandparents got a squeal too. Kev, on the other hand, doesn't squeal, but you know he likes something when he opens it right away and starts playing despite the pile of unwrapped boxes waiting.
One of the cool unexpected things my husband got was a comment on his blog from the leader of the band he was writing about.
Tuesday, December 19, 2006
Monday, December 18, 2006
Ellicot City is home of the oldest railroad station in the country and a nice destination for a day trip, if you like trains or like to shop in an "old town" setting. The rail museum has a nice holiday train layout set up to watch.
Friday, December 15, 2006
Thursday, December 14, 2006
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
Monday, December 11, 2006
My week-long project is finally coming to a close. My 55-gallon fish tank in my bedroom had been overtaken by algae, it was so thick in there I couldn't tell if I had any fish. (I did). I put them in a smaller tank on the floor and drained the water from the big tank and added copious amounts of bleach to kill the algae. The bedroom smelled like a natatorium for the week while I scrubbed the glass in spare bits of time. Everyday Fern would walk in my room and inhale deeply. She couldn't get enough of the smell. I guess I should be glad she's not attracted to the smell of natural gas, she'd have her head in the oven.
Yesterday I moved the little guys back into the main tank and by this morning they were adjusting again and the chlorine smell is dissipating. I made the stupid mistake of sliding the aquarium up against the wall without measuring for enough space behind for the filter (which was on the other tank at the time). Ever try to move a 55 gallon tank with water and rocks on a heavy wooden stand away from the wall without spilling a drop or removing the water? I did, and that's why I get to be Construction Girl's trusty side-kick.
Now that I can actually see my fish, I need to buy more.
Friday, December 08, 2006
I've been pondering this while working on a quilt I've been commissioned to make for Christmas. I only have two weeks to finish it. My friend picked out the pattern and the fabric and I've put the top together. She wants me to quilt it (as opposed to sending it out to a long-arm quilter). The pattern is 16" sawtooth star blocks with secondary sawtooth stars where four blocks come together. There is plenty of open space for nice quilting patterns which I could buy at the quilt shop (since I can't imagine them on my own). But that's another thing, I'm not sure I've got the skill to machine quilt a pattern without making mistakes. The quilt is for an 8 yo she isn't quilt savvy so it'll pass the 20 yards at a gallop test, but will it pass the "I'm proud of my work" test?
My goal, therefore, becomes: pick out a quilting pattern for this quilt that I can do easily, and be proud of, and is not just straight lines.
I got the quilt layered and pin basted so it's ready to go. I set up my new sewing computer with the chosen thread and the stitch regulator (the reason I bought my new machine in the first place) and made a test piece. I'm still shaky and the lines aren't very smooth. I'm very nervous about starting the actual quilting. How much more practice do I do?
Sunday, December 03, 2006
Something for her to look forward to....
Friday, December 01, 2006
I say that structure that people live in, is a house. After you move in and live in it, then it's a home.
Builders don't build homes, they build houses. The commercial just sounds shallow to me.
People make a house a home. What do you think?
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Last night at the grocery after I paid for my things I saw a neighbor and said hello. He's the husband of Fern's Girl Scout troop leader. (He's also the local rock star, but that's another story.) After a brief exchange I learn he's got over $100 of groceries in his cart and no wallet in his pocket. (He forgot he had replaced his wallet with a screwdriver earlier in the day while working in the house.) So I whip out my checkbook and make out another check to the store.
If you're counting, that's three money-related good deeds I've done in the last couple of weeks. What have you done?
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Monday, November 27, 2006
Friday, November 24, 2006
Experienced. I get a chuckle out of that word. I guess it's the new word for "used." One of the golf mentors at work has a bag of experienced golf balls available for us novices to use. Do they perform better than inexperienced balls?
What other "experienced" things have you experienced?
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Saturday, November 18, 2006
The good news is I had a nice birthday on Thursday. CG and my husband conspired about tickets to Movin' Out. He got a pair for Fern and me and CG bought a pair for her daughter and her. The four of us should have a great time. I also got earrings (two pair), mall a gift card, books (all three of a trilogy) and rachet wrenches. Nice haul. Dinner was great, crab legs, yum. Pleasant evening.
The bad news is Petey died last night. Fern's first parakeet. We're not sure what he died of, but the pet shop owner said he had some kind of face mite. I don't if there were other factors or not. He was strong until the end flying around like crazy until yesterday. Rest in peace, Pete.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Click over on "dad's photos" in the margin, or just click here. Enjoy!
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
When the painters were here they moved everything to the centers of each room. This process unearthed loads of stuff. junk. debris. crap. The walls are so pretty now I don't want to just put the old stuff back exactly where it came from. I took probably a dozen things off the mantle before painting and now there is a vase and a pair of candlesticks. I don't want to put anything else back up there.
I spent the better part of the weekend putting the family room kitchen back in order. The hearth has been cleaned and vacuumed. I bought a new lamp for the top of the new bookshelf. We have an eight foot cookbook shelf in our kitchen. The painters put all the books and the other school papers that were up there in 3 large bins. Fern and I dusted the books off and put them back up. I purged the collection and marked a large box for give-away. All the loose recipes, school papers, IEP's and report cards are now arranged neatly in metal magazine files. You can actually get something without it falling on your head. When my husband came back from his trip, he just noticed the box of books in the hall.
I'm supposed to be working on a Christmas quilt, but I've lost my enthusiasm about it. This house has zapped the life out of me.
Monday, November 13, 2006
Then later when I picked him up, I drove through McD's and got him some french fries. His sister asked him for one and he gave her one without complaint. And then another. I was stunned. He was sharing near-sacred fries with his sister?
Sunday, November 12, 2006
Thursday, November 09, 2006
Ever have days like these?
Wonder what I'll find tomorrow, maybe a large bag of $10's and $20's.....
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
I've been watching Project Runway, Bachelor Rome, Survivor, Amazing Race, Hell's Kitchen and Top Chef.
What do you watch? Who are you rooting for? Why do the bimbos on Bachelor really care if this guy is a prince? Do British women have princess fixations, or is just us Americans since we don't have our own royality?
Monday, November 06, 2006
I tried to get the gym here at work to start the "Maintain - Not Gain" program before Halloween, but "studies have shown if the program lasts too long it will lose participation." I told them that might be true, but people also need help with candy season. I don't over eat at Christmas and New Year's, just Halloween. I can pass on extra stuffing and pumpkin pie. I can pass on warm rolls and melting butter. I can pass on gravy made from scratch from turkey drippings. I have a hard time passing by an Almond Joy or Butterfinger.
Now I'm hungry.
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
These are the square milk cartons I wrote about. Weird, huh?
This was one of the shots I took throught the sun roof of CG's van driving down 7th Ave through Times/Duffy Squares.
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Monday, October 30, 2006
At our church on the Sunday before Halloween there is a party for the kids which concludes by "Trunk or Treating." In the parking lot the adults hand out candy to the parade of kids from their cars. They often dress up their trunks for the occasion.
I climbed in the trunk with my bags of Reece Cups and Butterfingers and closed the lid just far enough so I could still get my hand out with a candy bar. I wouldn't let go until I heard "Trick or treat," or "thank you" from each child. I had a great time with this "costume." A lot of the other partnets didn't know it was me because it wasn't the car I usually drive. How am I going to top it next year?
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
Now I correct everyone's grammar, from my daughter to the guys on the radio, the preacher and my friends, whether they can hear me or not. I know it drives them crazy and I apologize, my corrections are almost like an involuntary response.
The "I" and "me" personal pronoun error is the most common one I hear. Just yesterday I heard the afternoon guy on the radio say "...email Sue and I your contest entry...." If you take Sue out of the equation then you'd be saying "email I your entry" and you'd know that wasn't correct. Why does the conjunction make it so hard for people?
I knew someone in college who spoke poorly and would not heed my corrections, and would say she could say it correctly if she wanted. She was working on a degree in elementary education. She never got a job teaching. Who would hire a teacher who couldn't speak correctly?
Spelling is another matter entirely, however.
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
I'm still trying to eat a low-carb diet so I stayed away from the cupcakes after I pulled them out of the oven. Both kids are wanting one right away. Alright, go ahead, I don't care, burn your mouths, you're old enough to know they are still hot.
About 15 minutes later I go into the kitchen and there are about 5 left of the 24 made. Where did they all go?
As it turns out, my son put a dozen in a tupperware box and frosted them himself. Needless to say, they brought tears to my eyes.
Monday, October 23, 2006
The lack of 14 slims in the several stores I've been looking in is frustrating. I bought 2 pairs of regular 14's today with adjustable waists. I hope they fit.
All this looking provokes the question about other kids. Are kids who wear this size just not "slim" any more? Are there so few children who need this size, the manufacturers just don't make them and put in adjustable waists instead? And what about the "husky" kids? Too many video games and snacks I guess.
Sunday, October 22, 2006
The painters are coming in the morning to start painting most of the rooms in the house and I haven't picked out the colors yet. I have two fan decks, those big books of color chips. Sherwin Williams bought Duron a while back so I have Duron's old colors and their new ones which were Sherwin Williams's old colors.
CG told me she picks colors by the name. "Stone Lion" remninds me of Harry Potter and "Bermuda Grass" reminds me of golfing. "Hiking path" reminds me of mosquitos. I have six rooms to select for. I could go with white in all the rooms, but do you know how many whites there are?
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Click to enlarge.
Monday, October 16, 2006
sheesh. Did I mention pancakes for breakfast?
My daughter's Girl Scout troop sold a bazillion boxes of cookies last spring and part of the money they earned went to camping and this trip to Baltimore to spend the night on the USS Torsk. My brother was a submariner in the Navy and I've been on a sub, so I felt fine saying yes when the leaders said they needed extra adults to go with the girls.
That's all fine and dandy until 0300 when I woke up from the diesel smell and couldn't get back to sleep. (Did I mention this was a 1944 diesel sub and the one I was on back in the 80's was a nuke, so no smell?) All I wanted was a breath of fresh air. I got up and walked around the berthing area and the mess deck a while and tried again to sleep. nada. My mind is warring with itself, fresh air, you're alright, fresh air, you're alright. The hatches were locked from the inside so I conceivably could have opened one and got my lungs satisfied, but I ended up sleeping in the mess hall with the lights on (because we didn't know how to turn them off.) It turned out the benches in the mess hall were padded and quite comfy without the smell of diesel and I could hide my face from the light under the flap of the sleeping bag and get a couple more hours of sleep before wake-up at 0630.
I managed to pass up the sandwich rolls and the chips and the pancakes and handfuls of oreos and as a result the number on the scale this morning was "almost" acceptable. Still above the Mendoza line, but I am much happier about the prospect of not having to buy a new fall wardrobe. Another week of low-carb meals and I'm golden.
Friday, October 13, 2006
I've been to NYC many times and love it every time I go, but this is the first time I've ever driven in Manhattan. Whew. Not a scared "whew" (I've driven on the beltway around Washington at rushhour), but more like "wow." Our hotel was on 7th Ave so I got to drive right down through Times Square (and Duffy Square if you're being picky) on the way to the Lincoln Tunnel for the journey home. CG had opened the sunroof since it wasn't raining any more and I had one hand on the wheel and the other hand on my camera snapping shots through the roof at every stop light. I guess I need to download them for viewing. I still don't know if they are any good. I saw the Naked Cowboy, but couldn't get a good shot of him from the moving van.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Second, I bought a new battery which I had said before. Yesterday I went out to put it in and the poles are backwards and if I rotate the battery around so the poles are on the right sides, the cables are too short. Now it's back to square one. Gotta buy another new battery. I can't see how to put in new cable without some actual knowledge of engines.
Tomorrow I'm off to NYC to get my semi-annual shearing. CG may post a picture on her site on Thursday night. She's going with me, should be fun.
Friday, October 06, 2006
My pirate name is:
Mad Mary Rackham
Every pirate is a little bit crazy. You, though, are more than just a little bit. You have the good fortune of having a good name, since Rackham (pronounced RACKem, not rack-ham) is one of the coolest sounding surnames for a pirate. Arr!
Get your own pirate name from piratequiz.com.
part of the fidius.org network
- I can sit and mow at the same time
- I don't get all sweaty
- I can't get enough umph to pull-start the push mower
Wednesday night I bought a new battery at BJ's for $25. 265 CCA (cold cranking amps). The size that is in there now is 160. I took a car care class about 15 years ago from Pat Goss, the guy on Motor week. One of the things I learned (and remembered) is to put the largest CCA battery in your car that will physically fit. If your owner's manual says you need a 675 and the 900 fits, put it in. You'll have more starting power especially for cold winter starts for longer time. So I bought a much larger battery than needed and hopefully it'll last a while.
Now I just have to get it installed. We had company last night and it's raining today. And the forecast for the weekend doesn't sound good. Oh well. At least the tractor's been tuned up....
Monday, October 02, 2006
I had to write a paper about my experience in PM for this last class. I was nervous about it since I'm not a PM now and have had no experience doing any of the things we've been learning about. The paper was due on Thursday, so on Wednesday afternoon I finally figured out my topic: quilting! I wrote about how a quilting project can be like work project. I even had footnotes! The instructor enjoyed it, wrote "good paper!" on it, probably because it was about quilting and not like the hundreds of other work-related papers he reads.
Have you seen those new milk cartons? They don't pour as well as the traditional jugs. They are like a tall square block. I'll post a picture when I have control over the computer and can download one.
I'm way over my Mendoza line. Have been for weeks. Too much pizza and chestnuts, I guess. I hate it up here. The only thing that fits is jeans and I don't want to wear them to work every day, although they are comfy.
Friday, September 15, 2006
Before I knew what the problem was I didn't want to drive the van so much and drove the Corrola, the car my husband drives most of the time. His oil light was on. sheesh.
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Monday, September 11, 2006
Autism Isn't Black and White
I finished this quilt top last night. It's made with puzzle fabric and letter fabric, two of my autistic son's favorite things. This is intended as a wallhanging for his room although my husband thinks I should make another for an Autism research fundraiser. I love the puzzle fabric, I'll probably have to buy more regardless of its future. I plan to bind this quilt in the red from the center block.
The problem is I don't know how to quilt it, pattern or which color thread. Given the busy-ness of the fabric, I'm not sure I want elaborate quilting, but I cannot think of what to do.
Friday, September 08, 2006
I went through Fern's schedule as she does every day, but with 10 minute classes where I learned I'm a below average parent. She has an agenda book which I'm supposed to be checking and signing every night. I've seen it once in three weeks. Oh well.
All of her teachers seem nice. The social studies teacher seemed nervous. This is his second year teaching, first at the middle school level. Fern doesn't like him. I wonder if it's his inexperience that evokes this from her.
During "lunch hour" I got to see other parents I've known for years, many just by sight, from Fern's other school years and activities. It's like a reunion for us too.
I got home at 9:00 and my family wondered why I took so long. Fern: do the math! 10 minutes times 9 class periods plus 2 minutes each to change classes plus homeroom = 2 hours.
I'm looking forward to a good year. I hope I'm not disappointed.
Thursday, September 07, 2006
I wrote the merchant again and said he'd ignored my request for my shipping to be refunded and therefore I was going to ignore his request.
Voila! I got the refund.
And he's still getting 2 stars out of 5.
He even offered me "member pricing" on any future purchase from his web site. I just happened to need a new memory card for my camera. His member price plus shipping is more than twice the price I found on eBay for the same thing.
Tuesday, September 05, 2006
Back in July we had a lot of rain and I had ordered a rain gauge from Amazon. Actually, a merchant who sells through Amazon. Thanks to being a pack-rat I have all the emails.
July 5, I order the rain gauge.
July 11, It has not arrived and I email the company. No reply.
July 14, Your order has been shipped, here's the tracking number.
July 20, delivery.
This is a cool rain gauge, Look Here to see it. It's self emptying so it can rain more than the fill on a cylinder and you still know how much you got.
Anyway, One of my emails from the company says sorry, here's a discount code for your next purchase. I reply saying I'd rather have my shipping refunded instead of the discount.
In the mean time, Amazon's been bugging me about providing feedback for the merchant, and I'd ignored it for a long time, but finally last week I acquiesced and gave the merchant 2 stars out of 5. Soon after, I got a form letter thanking me for the feedback and a $25 off coupon for my next purchase.
Then someone actually read my feedback and I get another message:
Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback about your shopping experience. I am sorry that you did not have a good experience with SkyBox USA and I wanted to reach out to you because of that.
We are growing quickly as a company, and unfortunately, experiencing some growing pains along the way. Although that is not an excuse for a poor customer experience, we are spending the majority of our time right now focusing on fixing some of the issues that we are having so that future customers can have an excellent experience. With that being said, low feedback scores are very detrimental to our business. In an effort to help restore your confidence in us, I would like to offer you a $10 gift card at one of the following merchants if you would remove your feedback from Amazon (you have up to 60 days to remove it).
So, Can I be bought? I'd really just like to have my shipping charge returned, but they ignored that request, so I'll just ignore this one.
What do you think?
Friday, September 01, 2006
And on a less gruesome note, we're off to the beach for the weekend. All the weather reports indicate rain today and early tomorrow, and sunny Sunday and Monday. Yay! My parents will be joining us on the morrow, so it should be a nice time for everyone.
What are your plans?
Saturday, August 26, 2006
I have another goal, too. Blue October, an alternative group, has a song "Hate Me," that's played on my mainstream pop station for middle-aged women. Everytime I've heard it play, it sucked my mind back to my college years, to my friends, then to Harry Chapin. I finally figured out the melody of the verses of "Hate Me" is the same as a Harry Chapin song, but I can't remember which one.
This means research. Down into the basement to find eight, yes, eight embarassing albums. I didn't think I had that many, but you know how crazy college girls can be. I may not ever figure this out, but it's fun to go back to 1980 for a while.
Friday, August 25, 2006
It's like when your age changes from 39 to 40. You're not really older than you were the day before, but it's that first number that looks so bad.
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
The blue one needs more quilting in the blank squares between the chains, but the binding is done and I can add more quilting whenever I'm moved to do so.
This is a picture I found of the blue chain in progress.
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
I'm not happy with my weight because I can't fit into many of the pants I own. If my weight drops just two pounds, my wardrobe shifts to a different size. Same if I gain two pounds: different size. Oh, and my legs are long, 33" inseam. So finding pants to fit well is always a challenge. Pants have been worn lower on the torso in recent fashion years too. I hate that because my belly flops over the top and is uncomfortable and looks and feels larger than it is, especially when it could be nicely contained inside a higher rise garment. So low rise pants are out.
So I stress about my weight, so I can fit into comfortable pants I already have in my closet, I don't want to be buying a larger size.
Saturday, my daughter and her friend went to the mall to find a first-day-of-school outfit. While she shopped, I went into Hechts to look around. Macy's bought Hechts so they are doing the makeover in the store, getting rid of the non Macy's brands and bringing in new ones.
Over ten years ago another area department store went out of business and Macy's took them over. All of the locations except for those in Prince George's county. They sited economic reasons, but many of us believed it was because the county is 62% black. It really ticked me off Macy's wouldn't come in and be a presence in the county. Seven-hundred-thousand residents here with money to spend. Why is that bad economics? So I've boycotted other Macy's since then.
Now Macy's is taking over a store I patronize frequently and I have a dilemma whether I should continue to shop there or not. I'm looking around on Saturday and I notice a brand of clothes I'm not familiar with, Charter Club. I continue on over to the clearance racks and I see a pair of Charter Club pants. Hmm. I try them on. A size smaller than most of the stuff that's fitting me now. And they fit great! Long enough. No gap in the waist band. They were a pair of lined dress trousers, much too fancy for my office. But they have a tag inside indicating the fit: Katherine Fit. Whoohoo! Jackpot. This pair did not have a clearance sticker on them, so I scanned the price. $90. Yikes. I went back over to the Charter Club section and found a less pricey, less fancy pair of pants, and they fit too.
I now have 4 pairs of new pants, they all fit, all long enough, and I don't have to stress about my weight for a while. Oh happy day.
Monday, August 21, 2006
My daughter starts middle school today, bus pick-up at 8:59. She was just getting dressed when I left for work. Darn, I forgot to tell her to eat breakfast. shoot.
She's going to be very busy this fall. Saxophone lessons, Girl Scounts, play practice for Into The Woods. School runs 9:30 to 4:10 so she'll be getting home late, and I hope her honors classes don't overload her with homework. I'm just not sure when she can fit it in.
I created a blog for my dad over the weekend. I want him to post pictures. He lives a couple hours away so it's not always easy to visit and look at his work. I'm trying to convince him to blog. He's in his 70's so blogging is new technology for him to grasp. I'll post a link for it when he gets more pictures up.
Friday, August 18, 2006
I thought I'd made progress the day before during the chicken salad creation.
Spirit Air had $16 flights on sale yesterday. I could have gotten to San Juan and back for $64 +tax (one stop in Ft. Lauderdale) departing 9/19 returning 9/24. Sure, hurricane season, but golf! whoohoo! And no dishes...
The pie was very good, by the way.
Thursday, August 17, 2006
When you get a service, your house gets cleaned on a regular basis, but there is an attitude that goes along with it that you don't have clean up after yourself, someone else will. And it's not just the kids, I've spilled something on the floor before and thought "the cleaning people are coming tomorrow, they'll mop it up."
As Fern and I are chopping up our ingredients, I explain all this. And she seems to be getting it. She made regular chicken salad with celery and I made curried with champaign grapes, apple and pecans. After we ate while we watched reruns of "Whose Line" I reminded her we had to clean up the kitchen. Before I know it, she's SWEEPING the FLOOR! I didn't say anything about the floor.
I'm trying to start maintaining the house myself by coming up with chores I can remember easily and that are not daunting. Like on payday-mondays, I'll change the sheets. Friday is trash day so Thursday night the wastepaper baskets should get emptied.
A new school year starts Monday. Fern rode the bus to orientation today. It's time for new beginnings, and I want to get control of my house.
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
This is my first attempt at adding a photo to my blog. This picture of Fern and my dad was one of the first picutes I took with a digital camera. The date stamp is December 2, 2002. I'm now on my third camera (first one stolen, second died in July, a whole nother blog) and if this works, I'll be trying to do the photo thing more often.
Fern is 7 here and Dad is pre-stoke. He recovered very well, just some vision issues and hearing loss in one ear now. I should get him to blog his photos, they're great.
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Each of my kids spent two weeks at camp overlapping a week in the middle when my husband and I got away for a few days. We took my son to the Water Park in Chesapeake Beach and my daughter opted for an evening at SF. We tried to go last Wednesday, got there at 6:30 thinking it closed at 10. We had discount tickets, but when we got there, there was a sign saying the park was closing at 8. We decided not to spend $80 for 90 minutes of waiting in line.
The discount coupons expired on Sunday so we went after we got Kev from camp. After about an hour of rides we decided to get some dinner. I took Kev and got a cheesesteak with fries, while my husband took Fern to get Chinese. They got their food and were done quickly and headed off to Two-Face while we ate. They were next in line on the ride when we arrived (thanks to cell phones, what did we do without them?) Kev sat at some tables and I stood by the fence to the ride and waited. He and I were about 30 feet apart. He was very content just sitting there.
While I watched Fern and her dad take their seats a discussion started between two guys in the open space between me and Kev. I wasn't really paying any attention to them until punches started to fly. I'm not in harm's way, nor is Kev. But more people join in, women too, and people are getting thrown into the fence I'm standing by. Security arrives and tried to break it up but as the fight continues, it migrates over to the area where Kev is sitting who is completely oblivious to what's going on. One of the blessings (or curses) of Autism. I pull him out of there just as a young women gets decked. Kev objects to having to move, but I explain to him I wanted him away from the fight.
A few moments later Fern and my husband get off the ride and he immediately wanted to know if we're ok. He then filled me in on what happened on the ride. It seems several riders wanted off because their friends were in the fight and wanted to join in.
Did I mention I hate Six Flags?
Why? I've been asking myself. Is it a race issue? It seemed about 5% of the patrons were white, the rest were black and Hispanic. The fighters were black. I don't think race is the problem. I hated SF before I took note of the demography of the park guests and before the fight.
I think it really boils down to park cleanliness, broken rides and the $15 they charge for parking. Every coaster I went on had broken seats or seatbelts. The drop ride had just gotten stuck and they were closing it. The water flume ride didn't even have water in it and was closed. There is just a grungy feel about the place all around. Hershey Park is such a pleasant place, too bad it's 2 hours away.
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
In my life, it's my weight, the number that separated a bad weight from an adequate one. I'm "happy" if I'm below it and very frustrated and unhappy if I'm above it. I really like it if my Mendoza line was 5 pounds less, but that's hard considering I'm closer to 50 than to 40 and I've had 2 kids. The more I want to get rid of a few pounds, the more I crave things that will add a few pounds. I walk with CG (Miss Kingsfield) almost every morning, which helps a lot. I've seen her Mendoza line go down in the last year and a half by our daily morning tour of the neighborhood; mine hasn't moved.
I got on the scale yesterday and I saw Mendoza-2 after struggling for the past several months (Mendoza +1.5). This morning the same number stared back at me again. yay! I ate OK today so hopefully I'll see that number again tomorrow. Or less.
Do you have a Mendoza line?
Sunday, August 06, 2006
|You Are a Chocolate Martini|
You're an elegant drunk, who only likes the best bars and the most expensive drinks.
A bit of a cheapskate, you're likely to mooch ten dollar drinks off both friends and strangers.
You should never: Drink and dash. You're gonna get caught leaving someone with the tab!
Your ideal party: A posh celebrity party you crash, with an open bar.
Your drinking soulmates: those with a Classic Martini personality
Your drinking rivals: those with a Blueberry Martini personality
Friday, July 28, 2006
I had never been to Strathmore Hall before and didn't know what to expect, but my first impression was this Montgomery County crowd might be a bit snooty and not "get" Trout. When Keith and Ezra took the stage I quit making crowd observations and just enjoyed the show. Most of their repetoire are songs for kids, but not the Insy Weensy kind, they do songs like "My hair had a Party Last Night" and "Alien in my Nose," songs kids (and adults) can really identify with and enjoy. (We have 8 of their albums :)
Have a listen here.
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
Chesapeake Beach Maryland is in "Southern Maryland," land of big hair, and definitely out of the direct influences of the big city. Therefore it was quite easy to pick my bald-headed boy out of the crowd, since he cut his own hair again over the weekend and to salvage it, I had to buzz it down to the nubbins. In neighborhoods closer to the Beltway, you will often see boys with the close-trimmed look. But not so in CB.
He had cut his hair with kid scissors while under the watchful eye of my parents while my husband and I played golf with my brothers on Saturday. My daughter, Fern, was quite upset. I think because, 1. Grandma and Grandpa should have been watching him better, and 2. Having an older autistic sibling is hard enough, but one with self-cut hair is very hard to deal with and embarrassing.
She's away at camp for two weeks and when she gets back, she'll have a week without her brother around.
Monday, July 24, 2006
I started off by myself last night and by the time I rounded the dogleg on 4 I could see a foursome ahead of me. They had finished 5 when I was ready to start it, but 6 was a long hole so I still hadn't completely caught up with them. I wasn't hurrying, though. They were on the tee at 7 when I aapproached the green on 6. One says to the other, "Should we ask her?" My mind just goes crazy, ask me what? Why do I continue to golf when I'm that bad? Am I available for dinner? What time was it?
"Do you want to join us on the next hole?" Ah. "Although she may not want to." They were a loud but nice group of guys. I had already heard them earlier from 3 holes away and told them so, we got along just fine. By the time I finished 6, they were on the green of 7 so I joined them on 8, the par 5. I was just thrilled I hit 3 good shots in a row in front of these guys and come that close to the green. I'm still smiling. I got a 7 on the last hole and so did one of them, so I guess I'm not completely out of my league. And I'm having fun, and that is what counts.
Friday, July 21, 2006
The Health Unit here at work has their suite on the same wing as my office. Across the hall from their door is an alcove with a scale in it so it's not uncommon to see someone with their shoes off weighing themselves. This morning as I walked past, there was someone there and on the floor next to them were two dozen-sized boxes of Dunkin Donuts.
Thursday, July 20, 2006
Like the guy I saw at the pool the other day with a towel wrapped around his middle. The towel was a Chutes and Ladders game board. If I were a guy I don't think Chutes and Ladders would be my first towel choice for drying off. We have that same towel, and it get put into rotation a lot when we grab a stack for the pool bag. We got a mini golf towel the same day.
Does anyone ever play the games on their towels? Even when it comes with all the game pieces? The pieces just get lost in my house and when I come across a stray foam child game piece months later, it always takes me a while to remember where it came from. Does anyone really keep track of stuff like that?
Friday, July 14, 2006
I caved. She wanted one, I got her the phone. What kind of parent am I? I wavered on it for a long time. She's been riding her bike to the pool where we're members which is about a mile away crossing a 4-lane road (with fast traffic), so having her a phone call away if there were an emergency was good. But on the other hand my parents didn't worry about me when I was her age, I didn't need a phone, why does she? She can use the land line to call her friends. I guess it came down to $10/month is an OK price for knowing your kid is alright.
What do you think?
Wednesday, July 12, 2006
This morning I dropped off Fern at skating daycamp. She'll be 11 on Friday and I'm trying to be aware of that "don't embarrass me, Mom" stage so I'm not really affectionate in public with her anymore unless she takes the lead. She's sitting with some friends and I whisper in her ear that I'd put some money on her tab at the snack bar for lunches. She says thanks and I turn to leave. She calls me back and I see she's blowing a kiss to me. We have this game where blown kisses are like arrows. When it lands on you, it hurts, so the receiver will make a funny face of pain, and may even say "Ow!" So, here comes this kiss from across the room and I have to play along, right? I catch the kiss with the appropriate act of pain and send one back. She catches hers with a loud "Ow!" and I get a round of approving smiles and giggles from her friends and a smile from my daughter that says, "Isn't my mom cool!"
Monday, July 10, 2006
On to dinner. We ate at Zola at 8th and F street. The food was very good. And the bathroom scale is still telling me I ate too much. That the and 4 pairs of pants I tried on this morning before I found one that fit.
Saturday, July 08, 2006
Why on earth did I count them? I don't know. Once I saw those stacks growing... I guess I just felt compelled to count.
I will not count the matched socks.
Wednesday, July 05, 2006
What was my point?
I'm not as disciplined at CG is with her blogs. She takes notes, keeps back-ups, and if she's had a boring day, she'll always have a good story to tell anyway.
I was at her rained-out pool party yesterday and when her basement flooded, so I was worried about mine, too. I kept wanting to go home and check it out. We're in the same neighborhood, so when her power goes out, you can bet mine was out too. My husband kept reminding me there was nothing I could do about it anyway and not to worry. OK. I'll try not to be anxious. Our power was out only about 45 minutes versus the 5 or so hours at CG's house, so my basement was dry, the sump pumps worked. My husband was right not to worry.
Monday, July 03, 2006
Living in Maryland, the usual destination is OC, aka., Ocean City, (not Orange County like on TV). We like the small town feel of Chincoteauge in Virginia. Assateague Island across the channel is where the beach is which is a national seashore/refuge so there are no huge hotels or loitering teenagers. Just beach. And wildlife.
The Chincoteague VFD raises money every year by rounding up the wild ponies on Assateague and swimming them across to Chincoteague on the last Wednesday of July. The new colts and fillies are auctioned off, then later that week the adults are swum back.
These babies can go for a lot, usually $1000 - $1800 each. The foals that are too young to leave their mom are auctioned, then returned to the herd. The whole process is fascinating, and they've made Pony penning week a long standing tradition, I'm just baffled this small town's VFD needs such funding. If such numbers are kept, I'm sure they would be high on the list of dollars collected per residents served.
Thursday, June 29, 2006
The rain made the roads bad, but I made it to drop off the kids at day camp on time, then on to the radiology office to pick up my x-rays of my arm. But their printer wasn't working, so I only had a written report to take to my orthopedic appointment at 9:15. I arrive 10 minutes early, but at the wrong office. I called the number on the referral and went to the address listed. Someone had transposed the information for my benefit.
I got the directions to the correct office and the 20 minute drive took 45. Then I had to wait another 75 minutes to be seen. I had asked at the first office when I could be seen there instead of being late at the other, but she said July 10th.
This was all before lunch, too.
Sheesh. Ever had a day that couldn't get better at all?
Monday, June 26, 2006
One neighbor has a blue and yellow macaw. She's a pretty bird and big! Makes our parakeets smaller than tiny. Sometimes I take her out of her cage, but her beak scares me, so I don't do it often.
Another neighbor has a pool. Since our family has a membership to a community pool, we're not really programmed to take advantage of available swim time. But I still need to check things. We had a record-breaking 5.2 inches of rain yesterday and the pool was quite full, about two inches from the top. Note to self: come back later and back-wash if it keeps raining. Then I check the skimmers. After I lifted the lid I peer down onto a frog trapped by the high water. I helped him out, but he went back into the pool.
OK, I kinda get the frog-water therefore pool thing, but when I got home, I found another frog. This time in the space between the refrigerator and freezer doors on the fridge in the garage. I guess frogs even like to go someplace new.
You ever find a frog in a different place?
Friday, June 23, 2006
Thursday, June 22, 2006
I spent the evening driving all over Glen Burnie. I took my son to the Costco (american cheese slices & paper towels), Walmart (a new watch for Fern and bubble bath, forgot a hair brush, two broke this week) and to play mini golf and the place by the airport. I had him write the scores down on the card. It was good practice for him to write smaller given the size of the boxes. The evening was beautiful, complete with a constant flow of landing jets close enough to read "Air Tran," "Southwest," and "America West" as they decended for landing. He's come a long way with loud noises, he didn't cover his ears once.
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
Yesterday I had a doctor's appointment that finished too late to go back to work, so I was able to get nine in before I had to pick up the kids. After I finished the first hole I noticed a guy playing behind me so I waited for him after I teed off on two. He could either play through, or play with me. When He approached I recognized him from another course. About a month ago my husband and I played together and we met this guy in the group behind us. It was kind of slow that day and his group would catch up with us on some of the longer holes. It turns out he is a new pro and besides being good, was very encouraging and helpful. I ended up playing pretty well, for me that is; I got a 49 (par 31). The lesson for the day was: trust what your club can do, don't force it.
Sunday, June 18, 2006
We have a ROUS living with us. Any fan of Princess Bride will
immediately know that is a "rodent of unusual size." Ours isn't as big
as those in the movie, but this guy is pretty big. It's a groundhog
who lives under our screen-porch. I've seen him about 3 times this
spring already, usually I only see him once a year. Wonder if he'd
like a pile of pea pods to chew on.....?
Anyone else have an unusual creature among their midsts?
Friday, June 16, 2006
On the back nine there are three holes (11, 14, & 18) that you tee off at the top of a blind hill, and, if you're a beginner, hope you can find the ball when you get down the hill since you can't see it land. One of the balls I lost was on 14. I hit off to the right, but had no luck finding it. It should have been there! Maybe it rolled under the lightning shelter...
Total for the evening: 3 lost balls, two orange, one purple, six found balls, all white. Oh well.
The upside is I played by my self and finished 9 holes in under two hours, compared with my previous round playing with others and finishing in over three hours. If I hadn't lost those balls I could have finished closer to an hour and a half..
Must practice, must play more golf.
Thursday, June 15, 2006
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
This time last year they were splitting up the local middle school putting half of the students in another building, an old elementary, which was an old middle school. They decided to keep the special ed program together at one school, so my autistic son would not change schools. He'll have two more years there. The routine at this school is to have PE every other day all year long.
We live in the area served by the other school so my daughter will go to sixth grade there in the fall. Imagine my shock when I learned at parent orientation she would have PE for only one quarter! Look around! kids are out of shape and over weight. Why, then, is it a good idea to schedule classes like this? CG's daughter had one quarter of Spanish last year. How on earth is she supposed to remember anything from year to year?
Isn't one of the goals of education to make the students better people prepared for the future? How is this system supposed to make the students at this school better people with these scheduling policies? Why are these policies different from my son's school on the other side of town? Don't they see the lack of PE will lead to vanity sizing in the negative digits?
Thursday, June 08, 2006
Another Round of Golf
On Monday this week I played with the beginner women's group at my local golf club. The woman I was paired up with was in my class when I took lessons in April, so we knew each other. I told her I was keeping score to go towards my handicap, and she made a comment, something about being a beginner and she wasn't ready to do that. I view getting a handicap as a record of improvement, along with my scores with putt count. If my handicap is 40.4 this June, then I'd like to break 35 by the fall. Some new golfers look at their scores and set a goal of breaking 100. If you play really easy courses, that is within reach a lot faster than if you play harder courses. So I think the index gives a better overall improvement picture.
One of the lessons taught in my class was held on course, a walking lesson where playing etiquette is discussed. The most important point being play "ready golf." On Monday we got paired up with another twosome who did not know how to play ready golf. One irritating moment was when I was putting, having the furthest ball away from the hole. The other three balls were closer and on my left. Their owners were on my right waiting for me to putt, not standing behind their ball, getting ready.
The long and short of the evening was it took 3:20 to play 9 holes. sheesh. But the good part was the last hole is a long par-5 hole, severe dogleg to the left. I shot a 6. In the dark, I might add.
Saturday, June 03, 2006
In the wake of the flying feathers, I asked my daughter if she'd rather be a chicken in one of the outside cages, exposed to the wind and rain, or inside with neighbors close in on all six sides.
She'd rather not be a chicken.
Thursday, June 01, 2006
Last year our wing at work had plumbing problems so in order to go to the restroom, I had to go to another wing. It was like going to a neighbor's house, the layout is the same, but it's just different, different magazines on the table or the mirror would be further along the wall.
Last night I visited another neighbor. I was cookie mom for my daughter's Girl Scout troop this year and had to deliver the prizes to the troop leader. Her house is my model, just reversed. It always jars my brain to go there because things aren't where they are supposed to be. I'm usually good with all things spatial, so why is hard to adjust my brain when I visit neighbor's houses or office bathrooms?
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Yesterday I attended CG's Memorial Day picnic/pool party. And I ate too much. A lot of it was CG's sister's mango salsa. Great stuff. So I'm telling myself I had a lot of fruit yesterday. And the chips were corn, therefore, vegetable. I just need to walk more and eat better. I'm not liking the number I'm seeing on the scale recently. Clothes are tight again and my watchband is snug. It's funny how and where five pounds can make a huge difference - before spring break my watchband was comfortably loose. I don't like being old(er), weight is harder to remove than it is to aquire.
Sunday, May 28, 2006
Now I've got new Michelins and another week until payday.....
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
Today is also house cleaning day. I get so frustrated about the state of my house. No one can put anything in the dishwasher unless I remind them. No one else helps with the laundry, so If I'm not in the mood to do it, it doesn't get done. I have a new housekeeper who comes on Wednesdays. I still have to pick up stuff before she can come in. She says I don't have to, but I do. My autistic son won't let me clean up his letters, so I have to wait until he's on the bus. He has piles of them everywhere. and piles of k'nex. and legos. Anyone have any clues about how to get him to only play with one messy toy at a time?
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Like my golf. I'm just learning. I took lessons last fall for the first time, then completed another set of lessons last week. I took them from Troy Beck at Glenn Dale. She's a great instructor. While I learned a lot, I'm still having trouble remembering all the steps to a good swing when it comes time to tee off. Then a lot of my fairway shots don't get airbound, they just scuttle along the ground.
The practice range provides a lot of hope, but if you get an unfavorable lie in the rough, it's like the practice is all for naught.
The good thing is I didn't get in the sand at all last night! I played with a couple of classmates in the beginner's league. The bad thing is my 9 hole score wouldn't make the cut if I'd been playing 18......
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
I got most of the block done, before I came in to work. I'm splitting the day with my husband. I'll finish the rest of it tonight at quilt guild meeting. My next block for the exchange calls for a star, so I may cut out another LeMoyne star to take with me.
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
I told Construction Girl about starting a blog so I could post comments on her blog. She thought it was great to be able to share about life with my teenage autistic son. I hadn't thought of that.
Let me know you're out there and I'll post more. If I can figure out what to write, that is. It's kinda like figuring out what's for dinner, the clever ideas never come to you when you're ready to use them.