Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Memorial Day 2006


I never said HappyMemorial Day, so here I am a day late. I had to work this year and couldn't make it to any parades or ceremonies. -As is evident from the photos below, the Cuddy's did make it to a barbecue, and that does seem to be one of the things so commonly associated with Memorial Day today. Of course that's nice, and we had a good time, but I want to make a point not to forget the purpose of the day. It's weird. I say "Happy" Memorial Day, but when I think of the day's meaning, "happy" doesn't seem appropriate. I think of Memorial Day as an important day of solumn reflection and appreciation for everyone who has died for our country, in wars and otherwise. I also think of all those who have fought and are fighting for our country, regardless of whether they did or will make it home. I especially think of family members who have fought in wars past, and when I think of them (particularly my father and uncle -and my grandfathers) I think of the things they saw, what they risked, and the courage they must have had. I also think of how it must have been to watch their fellow soldiers die. Most of those I know who did fight do not discuss it much (though my uncle did write this book), but I know they don't ever forget. Today (yesterday) I think of them (you), and I say a prayer. Let's never forget.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Sunday at Matt and Denise's


Need I say more?

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Sleeeepy

It's way too early to be posting, but Tommy woke up at about 6:00. I was not ready today. I still dragged myself out of bed because Tommy wanted breakfast and juice... and for whatever reason I updated my wishlist. Now I want to go shopping.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

blublahblublahblub

I am finally done with my test! Woohoo!

I had hoped to go out and purchase some knitting needs to celebrate, but I was way too exhausted for that. I did, however, make a trip down to Matt and Denise's with Brian and Tommy yesterday. (I just started abbreviating my typing like I do in my electronic log notes at work. That must be a true sign that I am over-worked, no?) We had pizza and drinks while we watched the Red Sox game -until I fell asleep anyway. We happened to discuss Manny Ramirez and how "Manny is just Manny." We had a rather lengthy discussion about him. Then today while I was at work... again... Brian sent me this. I was and am amuzed. I want to see it!
That said, I am only up briefly after an extended nap and need to go to bed for the night.
Before I go, a blue flowers progress pic:

...and the Epicurious Recipe of the Day. Mmm.

With that I'm off, but I will probably be back tomorrow.

Oh, and because someone will ask, yes. I passed the test.

What about today's title? I think it accurately reflects how I feel tonight. Besides, I am waaayy too tired to make up something sensible...

Goodnight! ;-)

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Yep.

Those of you who already know Tommy well have clearly noticed his tendency to answer questions with a very assertive "Yes." Tonight we were at dinner when Tommy asked if he may please have some more ketchup, to which I responded, "Yes you may. That was a very nice way to ask." He then replied "Yep. It was."

Another Project Finished


I finally finished the baby shawl about a week ago. I was a bit disappointed, actually. The border was pretty, but the shape was strange. (There is a reason I didn't lay it out on a flat surface for the photograph.) The pattern proved to be pretty simple, and even though I used a slightly larger hook than the pattern called for, I didn't have to buy any extra yarn, which was good. Now I just have to figure out what to do with it. My brother and sister-in-law are expecting their fifth baby in August, and I was thinking of them the entire time, but now I don't think it's really practically sized for a baby, so I might have to think of something else.

Next I'm up for something small and quick. I'm looking for a boyish hat to make for Tommy. I still have lots of soft gray yarn left over from an earlier project and would eventually like to make a scarf and some mittens to match. I was thinking of a simple diamond-like cable pattern, if that makes sense -or something similar. I am the type of person who thinks up new ideas on my own and then looks for something similar, only to get frustrated. If only I knew a little bit more about knitting I am sure I would make up my own patterns all the time. Unfortunately I'm not in a position to buy the book I have in mind to help me get there. I'm hoping I will be able to purchase the book and a few knitting necessities before I go away on my business trip this summer. I figure I should have plenty of time to myself at the hotel and will surely need some serious de-stressing, as being away from my family is going to tear me to pieces. Ugh.

I have time to think up my next project anyway, as I need to focus on studying this week and won't allow myself to pick up a needle or a hook again after tonight, until I have taken my test on Friday. I am seriously behind.

In the meantime, I'm not completely dismissing the urge to brainstorm my next project and would love some help in gathering a few terrific patterns. So please, pretty pretty please, with cherries on top-and whipped cream-and a pile of yarn-if you have a favorite pattern, share!

Saturday, May 20, 2006

A Good Day for Tommy

One thing I have learned as a mom is how great it can feel just to know your child is having a great time doing something new. Today was Child Safety Day at the local volunteer fire department. Brian volunteered, and Tommy and I went to have the car seat checked. While we waited Tommy was given a new hat, colored for a contest, received a great pig-shaped piggy bank, met a big fuzzy bear (Daddy in disguise... ssshhh), and had his face painted. The best part, though, was climbing in the fire truck. We walked around to look at one, and there happened to be a volunteer fireman standing around the back. He saw Tommy and asked if he wanted to get inside, almost as if he actually had to ask. He lifted Tommy up into the driver's seat, and Tommy had suddenly arrived on cloud nine. I did snap a few pictures on my cell, though I wished I had the digital with me at the time. Later all the kids wanted nothing but to play in the fire truck and were all running around, I think making the lone volunteer firefighter in that area a bit uneasy. Tommy jumped in the back and buckled himself in, and he was happy to just sit there, pretending to go for a ride. After other parents gathered their kids again, and it again quieted down a bit, a little girl came in and joined Tommy. You would think they had been friends for a long time, all strapped in next to each other, wearing matching firefighter hats, showing each other their newly painted faces, and pretending to be some very silly firefighters. It was very cute.

We also had a police officer take Tommy's fingerprints. I have to say, I hope I never have to see that again. I mean, I know it was for a good cause today, but it was still a little weird to watch a police officer take my son's prints. Of course, a woman came around with a camera just then, too, and snapped a polaroid of Tommy at the fingerprint station. I'm not sure if it was meant to fit inside the child identification book or whether she was just snapping photos of the event, but throw in a verticle ruler on the side, take away the smile, and we would have had a mugshot to match. Okay, he's only four. It was still kind of funny.

Speaking of which, we went through a sobriety checkpoint on the way home last night. (No, of course we were NOT fingerprinted.) I don't think I've ever been through one before. There are more of them out here, though, than there were in New Hampshire, which I appreciate. They usually catch quite a few drunk drivers, too, which is both good and bad, I suppose. We didn't see anyone who had been taken aside for a sobriety test. I both hope they caught some people last night and hope there were no drunk drivers on the road. Let's be realistic, I know.

Anywho. I should be studying... or something.

Bordeaux

I tried to link to a CNN.com video titled "Raves About 2005 Bordeaux Wine" but couldn't seem to find a direct link, and explaining how I found it would be way too much trouble. Apparently 2005 growing conditions were almost perfect, and this year is going to be a big one for the 2005 Bordeaux. I am no wine connoisseur, by any means, though I would like to be. What amazes me is that a case of the top class Bordeaux, per CNN, could already set one back $5,000, yet much of the wine won't be bottled for a year and will not be delivered for yet another, and that it's one of those wines that they will still be selling 40 years from now. I have never tasted Bordeaux (to the best of my knowledge) and expect I may never do so, but as I always say, it's nice to dream.

Trip to France for some wine tasting, anyone?

Monday, May 15, 2006

I think I might prefer the French countryside, but Paris is good too.

I Belong in Paris
I enjoy all that life has to offer, and I can appreciate the fine tastes and sites of Paris. I'm the perfect person to wander the streets of Paris aimlessly, enjoying architecture and a crepe.

Brian says he belongs in bed. I'm tired too. *yawn* Three hours of Grey's Anatomy can be exhausting. Goodnight.
P.S. Thanks, Stephanie, for the blogthing.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Happy Mother's Day

Gifts from my boys...

Thanks Guys!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Thank You Tommy!

Look at what Tommy made for me! He made it at daycare and gave it to me yesterday, as an early mother's day present. I have been wearing it ever since - with pride. :)

Here is what I made yesterday. I used the recipe on the back of the peanut butter chips package for REESE'S Chewy Chocolate Cookies. They pale in comparison to Tommy's creation, of course, and they don't look nearly as perfect in my photo as they do in the REESE'S photo, but they are VERY yummy. VERY VERY yummy. Did I mention they are yummy? Oh, and super chewy. And yummy. Mmmm.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Back-Tracking

For no reason whatsoever I happened to check our old wedding page on the knot last night, which, oddly enough, was still there. I logged in, using an E-mail address that no longer exists, in order to take a look back at some of the ideas I had once saved to my account. What I came upon was some of the most beautiful wedding gowns of my dreams. Don't get me wrong; I loved my dress. I'm not still dreaming on this one... just admiring. Here are three of my favorites. I think the first might be my all-time favorite -over the top, I know, but beautiful none-the-less. I don't think I would ever have worn it, even if I could have afforded it, but there is something about it that I LOVE beyond words. The second gown would have been more practical (not price-wise, but a little more... modern), and I would definitely have worn it. The third strikes me as very pretty, but even with a perfect figure anyone would have to play anorexic-for-a-day in such a close-fitting gown, and that's just not right.


I don't have expensive taste or anything...

Of course looking at the photos makes me long to be as thin as I once was. -Maybe I should use them to boost my motivation! (The desire is ALWAYS there, and while I would never let myself go very far, I could use a little push to get back to where I want to be!)

*Sigh.* Back to reality.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Oh, and By the Way

The Red Sox threw 127 pitches, total, tonight. The Yankees threw 217. We faced 34 batters. The Yanks faced 54.

I say ouch -and HA. We rubbed their faces in the dirt tonight.

(Yes, the true Red Sox fan inside me still wants to hold back for concern over the reality that may be ahead... but tonight we kicked some serious, um, pa-tootie. Yes, I said pa-tootie. This is a family-friendly site, afterall.)

I Have Green Things!!!

The neighbors must have finally realized my weirdness, for sure, when they saw me taking these pictures, but...

There are little green sprouts growing in our planters!
Woohoo!
(One might almost think that was what was supposed to happen.)

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On another note, and for some mild entertainment, be sure to click here and then click on pictures 10 and 11, in succession. Amusing.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

How to Make Yourself Mad

Caution: If you don't like numbers do not click on today's link. I repeat, if you do NOT like numbers, do NOT click on today's link.
Don't forget to reply with your time. (I'll reply with mine as soon as I muster up the patience to complete a puzzle.)

Friday, May 05, 2006

Look who has a new bike!

He was out-growing the big wheel.

Plus I think bike riding might even beat out trains for Tommy. NO JOKE.

Unfortunately the box was missing a nut, so the training wheels are still sitting on the washing machine, and we don't have an air pump, so the tires are flat. The boys plan to take care of both tomorrow. Then, hopefully, I can share some pictures of Tommy actually riding.

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Tommy had a dentist appointment today, and while there were no x-rays taken, the report was no cavities. Yay! ...He does brush his teeth approximately every other day at daycare (don't ask why not every day-I'm just happy he does it at all, at daycare) and doesn't miss a night at home. (Once or twice, when he almost did, he woke up crying because he had forgotten. It was a SERIOUS issue.)

I had my appointment yesterday. I was told, as suspected, that I need to have my wisdom teeth out. Apparently my bottom wisdom teeth are completely perpendicular to each back tooth, and they're stuck. That's not a good thing. No, no.

Of course, if you're reading this you have probably already had your wisdom teeth out and know the routine.

Oh well.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Cookies & Gardens


I made some delicious chocolate chocolate chunk cookies tonight after dinner. I followed a Baker's Chocolate recipe from the box, more or less; I didn't add the extra flour, as suggested when not using nuts, and I used chocolate chips for the chunks. I thought they were very yummy. They clearly didn't match the chocolate chip cookies Brian had the other night, for him anyway, but I liked them. They tasted a lot like brownies. I'm planning to take them to work tomorrow, to share with some very stressed out co-workers. I'm hoping a little bit of chocolate might lift the mood just a bit, even if it's only for a moment.

...I took a test today for work--a test required in order to become a licensed auto claim adjuster for the state of Rhode Island. I am already licensed to handle auto claims in New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Connecticut. I currently handle one area of New York, along with all of Vermont (which isn't much but oddly enough has the most difficult test), but I will soon be handling a different area, so I'm up for some significant changes. Actually, I'm looking forward to learning something new. You probably don't care too much about that, however, so I'll move on...

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I wanted to share some more gardening pictures. Ok, they're not from my garden, I admit (I almost fooled you, didn't I), but it's good to dream, and in my dreams this is almost as good as it gets:

Yes, yes, I dream big.

While my aunt was in college she lived in a guest house and care-took a beautiful place with amazing gardens that had once been featured in Better Homes and Gardens (no joke), and then my brother moved in after she moved out, when he was a struggling musician and college student (never a boring time in my family). Even my father moved in, after my parents' divorce, and care-took the place for a short while. If only I had digital pictures I wouldn't have had to search like mad to find a picture like the one above. Really, it took a lot to find the kind of garden I was looking for, and the above (particularly the top and bottom gardens above) are almost perfect, but not quite. (Yes, I repeat, I am picky.)

Like I said, I dream big.

There's a very good chance I will never ever have a garden 1/8 of the garden above, but hey-anything's possible, and while I certainly don't expect it, I still think dreaming (big) is a fabulous thing.

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There are some other things I want to mention, but I don't like being pulled away from the Sox game, so I'll save them for another night. -Thanks for reading, and don't forget to check back!

Monday, May 01, 2006

Blue Flowers

I had a very long and detailed prequel to this post on Saturday. It was all about gardening and, well, basically what to do about it. Unfortunately I typed away and continued to type some more, only to hit "publish post" and watch my post disappear. It was a little frustrating, but then you'll have that. (Holy Allegheny/ADPi backflash!)

I'm going to pretend you read it and tell you what we decided to do, which was to plant flowers in a couple of railing boxes that we can take with us one day, in our dreams, when we actually buy a house of our own. I wanted to buy pre-grown flowers, but the railing planters were pricey, so I stuck with seeds this time, which should be good for educational purposes, anyway. The package says "Phacelia." I found the flowers online listed as "California Bluebell Phacelia Campanularia." I call them "Blue Flowers." This is how they are supposed to look:


I picked them because they should be very easy to grow. (It says "VERY EASY TO GROW" across the top of the seed packet.) If they grow I'll post a picture to show what they really look like. I'll probably even post a picture even if nothing comes up. After all, I'm never afraid to admit failure (or learn from it)!

We bought two packages of seeds and, in doing so, received a free package of something different that I might plant in the ground one of these days. Tommy had to have spent at least an hour digging in the yard yesterday, with his bulldozers, and all I could think was that he would love to dig up a spot for a garden. As you already know, he has the tools.

Here we are on Saturday, getting the soil ready for planting:



And here is Tommy yesterday, playing in the dirt:



I felt a little like I was gypping Tommy by limiting him to a couple of railing planters, and if we can start digging up a spot for some more flowers I bet he would be thrilled.
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Off subject, we had a nice time yesterday, first walking for March of Dimes and then both playing and relaxing outside at home. I've posted a new album here and updated our site tonight. Check it out if you have time, and don't forget to sign our guest book (mostly because it has been ignored for the past three years or so). We love hearing from you, even if we haven't in years!

It's time for me to study, but I'll leave you with a picture of my boys from yesterday, at the walk. Thanks again for stopping by!