Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Mad as you know what...

And, no, this is not a rant about the Eagles - although pretty darn mad about them too, but pretty much resigned to rooting for da Bears this year!

No, this is about the freaking heron that has been hanging out around our pond for the past several days.

Yes, we have a heron that has come by to hang out around our pond on occasion. Yesterday I actually saw him (no, I didn't take any pictures, sorry). He's huge - stands probably as tall as about 3 or 4 feet. Know why he's huge?

Remember my fish? (If you click there you will learn all about my fish)

Yeah, well, good thing I took a picture of my fish to remember them by because that darn heron ATE EVERY LAST ONE OF THEM!

Yesterday, when Brock came in to tell me the heron was back, we went out and he was standing at the middle pond (end of the creek just before it goes into the big pond) where we had had some fish hanging out - the heron flew away (low enough that he stopped traffic on the road) and I found NO FISH. I checked on my 30 or so in the big pond and they were fine.

Today, the heron was back - Brock and our neighbors had scared him away several times, but he managed to eat every last one of the fish in the big pond by 10:30am.

All my fish, gone.

There's a heron flying around these parts who's days are numbered if I see him again.

Monday, November 27, 2006

20 years older

You can't wait for the 5th year reunion because you want to see how everyone is out of college. The 10th year you wonder who got married and who has kids. The 20th, you are just hoping you look as good or better than everyone else. And, you hope that people remember you! And, that you can remember a few, too!

Turns out, we all look pretty darn good and we all pretty much remembered each other, if not right away, after a few minutes or so! The name tags came in handy a few times!

My 20th high school class reunion was this past Saturday. I was wondering to myself earlier that day how I was going to be able to spend 5 hours on a Saturday night hanging out with people I hadn't seen in 20 years since, well, I hadn't seen them in 20 years and, well, my bed time is a lot earlier on Saturday nights than it used to be! The idea that I might be up later than 10pm was daunting enough, but the reunion was scheduled to go until midnight, so I was wondering how I was gonna stay up 2 extra hours!!

Turns out, I really like the people I graduated high school with. Not a bad bunch of people at all. And hanging out with all of those who came out on Saturday night (about 85-90 graduates altogether) was so much fun that I actually didn't notice it was 12:15am when we left! (My feet, on the other hand, did notice the time! And, they noticed how I put them in high heels they haven't worn in years and THEN danced (how dare I!) And, well, the feet, they revolted! My blisters have blisters!)

There was dancing, there was drinking, there was catching up, there was showing of pictures of children, there was lots of fun. I caught up with people I hadn't seen since graduation. Remembered things I probably haven't remembered since graduation. Saw some people I didn't expect to see and hopefully will keep better touch with in the future.

When some people look back on high school experiences, sometimes they don't remember the time so fondly as others might. I tend to look back at high school with mixed feelings - sometimes it was the worst 4 years of my life, teenage angst and all, and sometimes I remember that it really wasn't that bad, that even though I wasn't "popular" or a "jock", didn't mean that I didn't have some pretty great friends who helped make 4 years of high school bearable.

High school reunions are scary because high school was scary. High school was all about fitting in (well, and getting good grades was important, too, Mom) and when it comes right down to it, I guess we all have a fear that we didn't quite fit in. And, well, you think about getting together with all the people you didn't think you fit in with 20 years ago, you kinda get scared. Maybe the reason why some people just don't go to their 20th reunions. Who wants to get rejected by the same people 20 years later?

Saturday night I realized that high school really wasn't as bad as I remember. Or, better yet, I realized that life is a great equalizer. As we got out into the world and experienced life, we all began to "fit in" better. There are no "popular" kids or "jocks" or "band geeks" in the real world. Just people trying to make the best of their lives. Sure the people that hung together in high school spent a good deal of time on Saturday night hanging together again, but there was a lot of mixing and mingling going on and catching up and getting to know one another again, in a different light, without the pressure of trying to "fit in."

I am sure that not all people who attend a high school reunion (even our reunion) experience the same thing, and it wasn't as though a great light shone down on me in the middle of the night and angels sang and I felt all that high school angst go away. I enjoyed myself, and I enjoyed my friends and I had a nice time catching up with the people who I spent 4 years with, whether we "hung out" or just share a class together. And, within minutes of arriving, I didn't feel like I didn't fit in anymore. Better yet, I didn't feel like I HAD to fit in any more. That was nice.

I promised pictures - I took a bunch, but only a few are good enough to share with the rest of the world (something about taking pictures and drinking just doesn't work well!) I am posting a few of my favs here, but you can see the rest (what there are of the rest) here!

Jim Lewis and Joe Nunley
Two of my favorite guys from High School! Jim Lewis and Joe Nunley

Eric Carlson
Another favorite guy from high school! Eric Carlson

And, for even more pictures, check out Karen Reiss's pictures!

All in all, it was a great night. Looking forward to our 30th!

Friday, November 24, 2006

Thanksgiving 2006

We had a wonderful thanksgiving this year. We had planned to be at home, just the three of us. Brock planned to make a 17 pound turkey that would keep us in leftover heaven for weeks. Our wonderful next door neighbor invited us to spend the day with her family and bring our turkey, so we did.

Showing off her shoes
Leda in her Thanksgiving outfit - her Grandma bought it for her!

It was really nice. We had a wonderful time. And my pies, they went over really well. They actually tasted really good! If I do say so myself!

Leda had fun playing with Connor and Katlyn (her sometime babysitters!) and eating lots of crackers and apple sauce, not so much room left for turkey. But she had some of Mommy's Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie and she LOVED it! Oh, and the chocolate covered almonds weren't bad either...

Chocolate!

Today we hung out, cleaned the living room, took a nap and Mommy went shopping - yes, I ventured near to a store on the one day of the year that I shun going shopping. But I went late in the afternoon (around 2 - when shopping malls open around 2:30 in the freaking morning around here, 2 is late in the afternoon!) and I was only going to Target and only getting Christmas cards, so that if the mood is right on Sunday, I will get my Christmas cards ready to go! Then, I got really adventurous and went out to purchase new curtains for the living room. Not too bad there either. No way will you get me near a mall on Black Friday though, no matter how much the discounts are!

Tonight we hung out with friends at the Shiers and had some good Japanese food (sushi, shasmi, tempura, etc...) Leda was having fun with all the kids and when we got our food (the kids all got to eat hot dogs) our child was the only one that joined us for Japanese food. She had to have her eda mame! It appears that we don't have to shell them anymore, the kid, she shelled her own eda mame! And she had a little noodle...WITH CHOP STICKS. Yes, my child used chop sticks tonight - not perfectly, but she used them the way you would use chop sticks. It was amazing!

So, halfway into the holiday weekend and so far, so good. Tomorrow night is my 20th high school reunion, which could prove interesting, so check back at the end of the weekend!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Bad Bad Aunt...

I didn't mention it this year because, well, you all know how bad I am at birthdays and I just didn't want to rub it in.

But, I forgot my niece's birthday. Again!

Yes, Sami's 2nd birthday was last Friday. When did I remember it? That's right, Saturday morning!

I was just reviewing the November2005 archive because I wanted to see what I wrote about Leda a year ago and I saw this post. It was such a sense of deja vu because, well, I DID THE SAME THING LAST YEAR!

I guess that means we have to fly to Florida next year for Sami's birthday! ;-)

I love pie!

Apple Butter Pumpkin pie with pecan streusel topping:

Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie with pecan streusel topping

Grandma's Apple Pie:

Grandma's Apple Pie

Hopefully the taste as good as they look.

The best part - I didn't have to share the left over pie crust dough! ;-) But, I did, share it, with my husband (it was either that or eat it all myself!)

Diagnosis

What a busy day today will be - not only do I have work to do (I mean, I am actually working today) but we will be going over to friends for dinner, then I have to figure out how to make two pies for tomorrow when we get home!

And, I have a slight case of walking pneumonia thrown in for good measure!

Yes, the hacking cough that has been persistant the past two weeks of my life turns out to be walking pneumonia - not serious enough to kill me, just keep me from getting any sleep and being a real pain in the you know what!

But the great thing about the diagnosis is the DRUGS! Yes, that's right, I said DRUGS. I have never been so happy to get a prescription for drugs before. I think I almost hugged the doctor! I have had very little good sleep the past two weeks and my doctor, the wonderful woman that she is, perscribe me some cough medicine with Codeine so that I could sleep! Ah, how nice it was to wake up at 7 this morning knowing that the last time I was awake was about 12:30 when I took the second dose! Of course, I felt like a truck hit me this morning, but I slept! ;-)

Hopefully the antibiotics that she also prescribed will kick this little organism's butt to kingdom come and I will be back to normal soon!

Brock took this picture of the child of the house last night...Juice boxes are special in this house, she really only gets one a day (if that) because our doctor wants us to water down her juice to cut back on the sugar. So the juice box is special. And, it lives in the refrigerator that Mommy and Daddy's beer lives in, and Mommy and Daddy get a beer in the evening, and Leda gets a juice box around the same time. We call it family beer time - yes, probably NOT the best thing to do, calling her juice box "Leda's beer," but it is a special time we all share, so there!

Drinkin' the juice

Sunday, November 19, 2006

So looking forward to a four day weekend!

Yes, we have recovered (mostly - I am the lucky one to have continued with a cough that won't go away, but other than that...)

Work is busy and I have promised two pies (yes - don't laugh!) for Thanksgiving dinner at our neighbor's house on Thursday. And, I have a slide show I have to complete for our reunion on Saturday night (yes, 20th high school reunion - how scary is that?). So, can you understand why I am SO looking forward to four complete days at home doing no work?

Besides, I get to spend it with her:

Leda

I mean, wouldn't that be SO worth it?

Pictures will be forth coming - I mean, really, do you think I'd go to my 20th reunion without my camera??

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Recovering

Well, all of us are on the road to recovery - I hope!

Let's see, recap of the sickness - Brock had a nasty cough that kept him (and I) awake most nights for the past two weeks. I caught the cold not to long after Brock did, which meant Brock AND I were up most nights coughing away. I subsequently lost my voice on Wed. It did come back (barely) on Thur and I was sounding like Brenda Vaccaro on Friday! Leda seemed to only get the runny nose, but then we noticed that she had gunk coming out of her eyes. So, for a few days, we were keeping an eye out for pink eye, which, luckily, never appeared and she seems much better now (except for the look like she went ten rounds with Muhammad Ali). We figure it was a sinus infection that just worked its way out.

Anyway, we all seem to be better today.

Brock and I did venture out last night for a concert - our first in MONTHS! We went to see Arlo Guthrie and Friends at a small local theater. We had great seats (about 6th row center - awesome!) Arlo had his daughter Sarah Lee and her husband playing with him as well as his son Abe and other band member Gordon and his grandson on drums. Later in the concert, two of his granddaughters joined the band (one was about 7 or 8 playing clarinet and the other was about 3 and very cute!)

It was a great concert, as usual (being only our second time seeing Arlo, it was just as good if not better than the first time). Stories were told, great songs were sung and, the icing on the cake, he did Alice's Restaurant! That was worth the cost of the tickets, the rest was just awesome! It's amazing he can do Alice's Restaurant pretty much word for word 40 years later! Believe me, as awful as I felt yesterday morning and was considering not going to the concert, I am VERY glad I went!

So, we are doing okay here again. The next week is pretty busy for me work wise, as I have my first installation going live by the end of the week (baring any issues). So, don't expect too much in the next week. Hopefully after that, I will be able to do some more updating. With pictures too!

Monday, November 6, 2006

Sick House

We are all sick here...well, some more than others, some less than others.

Leda had a cold, I got it, Brock got it, Brock never really got over it, got bad again, gave it back to me and subsequently Leda seems to be getting it now, too!

Can't wait until Spring. Seems that might be when the cold season is over. Yuck!

Got pictures from my Mother of all the girls together when we were in Florida...sucks my arm is in the picture, but it's pretty good non-the-less.

Sami, Abby and Leda

Leda kept trying to take Abby's hand off her shoulder, thus the reason for my hand!

Then there are the set of Leda and Sami eating birthday cake...two of my favs:

Leda and Sami eat cake!

The best one...love the look on Sami's face!

Hey, is she eating my cake?

Hopefully we will all be back to normal here soon.

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