Tuesday, January 29, 2008

"B" Day

Monday Walker and I had a very fun day. Our two big activities started with the letter B. This has given me the idea that maybe we should have a letter of the day once in a while. Could be fun. Try to find some horses on H day or get a haircut. Anyway, back to b...

After I picked Walker up after school I asked him if he wanted to go outside. We'd planned to do that earlier. It's cold, but not too bad. He decided he didn't want to play outside again. He'd just done that at recess. He opted for the "mystery ride" option. We just get in the car and I pretty much make up my mind as inspiration strikes.

We ended up at Exeter Lanes Bowling alley. I didn't even think it was open, but it was. We were the only customers there, though. Walker had never been, but we have been talking about it. The place is a real blast from the past. I don't think anything has changed in there since 1960. I'd never actually been in there so maybe things have changed, but it looks like a place out of the old tv show "Happy Days." They have bumpers now on some of the lanes so that kids (and adults) don't just get all gutter balls. I'd never bowled with them. They really helped my game. I bowled an 86 (with bumpers). I did get 2 spares. Walker did great for his first time. He really liked it. The shoes are different there than they were when I was a kid. I think that's a good thing. They were fluorescent. I hate bowling shoes. Borrowing them, I mean. About 15 years ago I was on a league from my work (Weeks Family Restaurant). We had a lot of fun back then and that's when I bought my own bowling shoes. I can't stand wearing other people's shoes, especially strangers. We didn't know we were going bowling when we left the house, otherwise I would have dug mine out and saved the money. I should just keep them in the car for that "just in case" time when we go bowling.

Walker kept sitting on the thing the balls roll back on. He loved pressing the reset button.

Even candlepin is a little big for his hands, but he did well. You can see the fluorescent pink and green shoes.

After bowling, Walker asked where we were going next. http://www.hamptonbeach.org/
We were half way to the beach, so we went there (thus the B words, bowling/beach). It was COLD, but I love the beach in the winter. Scott and I met when he lived there and we spent our first winter together hanging out on the beach. The beach playground was open so we got to play there for a while. The waves were crazy big for the NH coast. Must be stormy out to sea. It was very strange to have both snow and sand on my boots. Nothing was open on the strip, so we didn't have to spend any money. I'm so psyched we live close enough to the beach that we can just go there on a whim.

Contemplating the coast. Cute profile.

Beach boy.

Friday, January 25, 2008

New Laundry Appliances!

There's been so much going on with all of Scott's home improvement projects. This week he finished the water filtration system. Our water was drinkable before, but it had high iron and mineral counts and made everything (including my hair over a period of time) turn orange. So we shouldn't have to scrub orange stains out of the toilets anymore. And my hair might stay blonde when I make it that color, rather than becoming strawberry blonde! The water also tastes even better. Ah, fresher water.

Scott finished the water and figured he'd move on to the washing machine. It had been filling very slowly lately. He fixed the filling issue, but something happened to make it not stop filling itself up. That can be very BAD. So basically, he pulled a Tim, the Toolman, Taylor on me. Darn. I didn't think we'd need a new washer for a long time. It was only a few years old. Oh well, Scott and Ed went to Loewe's and came home with a new washer/dryer SET! We didn't even need a dryer (yet). The dryer was in the old trailer when we bought the place 12 years ago, but it was in good shape and dried the clothes. That's all it needed to do, right. Well, these new ones are awesome. I didn't realize how exciting doing the laundry can be. They wash, dry, fluff, etc. Lot's of buttons. Every load seems to come with lots of decisions. How big, how long, water temp, and other things I'm not used to thinking about when I just pushed 'start' before. It's fun. The first loads have just come out. They are fluffy and clean! Thank goodness.
Walker wrote all his Valentines last night. He did great. It took a long time, but he kept at it. He did all the kids in his class (14) as well as signing his own name. We had some left over after that so he did more for his "big kid" friends. We're going to work on his birthday party invitations soon. It's coming up in a few weeks. Can't believe he's going to be 6.

Walker at Sue's (Uncle Donnie in the background) on Christmas day. He wore the suit given to him by Danny. We love hand-me-downs.
Walker and Danny "belly dancing" on Danny's 13th birthday. Must be a guy thing.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Heather Ledger

OMG! I was NOT expecting to see this tonight. How sad. He was awesome. The following article is from People.com. I'm still in shock. Never saw this coming. Just terrible...

Heath Ledger's Family Speaks Out on His Death

Heath Ledger's father Kim has spoken out following the shocking death of the 28-year-old actor Tuesday in New York. According to a statement from the family: Heath's family confirms the very tragic, untimely and accidental passing of our dearly loved son, brother and doting father of Matilda. He was found peacefully asleep in his New York apartment by his housekeeper at 3:30 p.m. U.S. time. We would like to thank our friends and everyone around the world for their well wishes and kind thoughts at this time. Heath has touched so many people on so many different levels during his short life but few had the pleasure of truly knowing him. He was a down to earth, generous, kind-hearted, life-loving and selfless individual who was extremely inspirational to many. Please now respect our families need to grieve and come to terms with our loss privately.

Cold Tuesday

The weather here is so cold. Bet they won't even go outside today for recess at kindergarten. We're going through a lot of wood now. Still trying to conserve the expensive oil. So where is more snow? We're ready for another snow day. Here are some pictures from the last big snow day. Walker loves to go and play in fresh snow.

If you stick your face in the snow like this,

You can end up with a face full of snow. Like this.

Scott plows the driveway into BIG piles. Great for sledding.

Walker and I did some shopping at Kohl's yesterday. He's needed new pants for a couple of weeks now. His are all getting too short. His legs are growing like crazy. We hit it on a lucky day. We found 4 pairs of pants he liked that fit and were buying them. We found out it was buy one-get one free. It was also 30% off the total if you charged it. Cool. We got a lot of stuff and didn't pay that much. Walker thinks I should get a job there. It's not a bad idea. I could use some money to put aside for the long, fun summer. I'll have to think about that. I actually do have some morning times available. Should I just use that time to sit around doing nothing or should I make some money? Hmmm.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Home Projects

Walker, last night in the bath. He wanted me to see his scary, green hands.

We've had a couple of busy weeks around here. Scott has been working hard to complete several projects (at the same time). They are all pretty BIG projects and I'm always amazed by what a professional job Scott does. I mean, I know he can do it, but how does he know how to do EVERYTHING?

This is a very blurry picture of Walker, but I was actually just trying to show the new oil barrel (to Walker's right). It's now, installed, filled and running.

Scott is here, working on the new water filtration system. There is another tank about that same size as the white one shown and is on it's way. Then he can finish that up. You can't see it in this pic, but he also recently installed a second sump pump (in the corner to his left). The first worked fine, but he thought a second, back up one was a good idea - just in case.

Here's the new generator box. I just learned how to use it if I need to. We didn't loose power in the last storm, but Scott still wants to. Maybe I should just be late on the electric bill...

I love the free publication that Kraft foods sends me. They have a lot of yummy, easy dinner recipes. I enjoy trying new recipes, enjoy cooking and drinking wine at the same time. I'm like Julia Child. If you want to subscribe to this magazine (FREE!) go to www.kraftfoods.com/share
and sign up. This week I tried their shepherd's pie recipe. It's even better than my made up one because the mashed potatoes have garlic and cream cheese in them. I also tried their lasagna but added in hot sausage because I like it. The cheesy, spinach manicotti looks good, but I'd use those extra large shells. I find manicotti difficult to work with and always end up ripping them by mistake. I'm gonna go out for the ingredients to the "mac & cheese taco bake" and the "Caribbean pork N Rice." Walker won't eat any of this, of course, but we always have plain chicken, pork, steak and pizza available for him. I make at least 2 different main courses every night (just like my mom used to). Scott and I would get bored if we ate like Walker.

I've got 5 rolls of film to pick up this afternoon. Yay. Lots of pictures. I really need to get going with my scrapbooking. I'm a year behind and really dislike that feeling.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Another Snow Day

Check it out - I can now take a picture and get it here in the same day. That's so new to me. These are still from my new phone. But Sue is going to give me her old digital and now I'm way excited to get it! I never realized it'd be so convenient. It'll definitely make me want to post more. It's always better with a picture or 6. This picture is Walker and Morgan when we came in from the snow. Morgan is so cuddly now. She used to hide from people. But having Walker around has really gotten her out of her shy phase. They are great friends now. She tries to wake him up every morning around 5 by purring near his head. She doesn't wake him up, but I end up waking.

We love snow days! We were pretty sure Walker wouldn't have school today, but you can never really tell. So we did get him to bed at the regular school bed time last night. Happily, we woke up to a message on the answering machine saying school was cancelled (not that we don't love school). We thought we'd have a pj/lazy morning, and did. We made a big breakfast of eggs, bacon and sausage. Scott and Walker played Halo (the original one today for a change of pace) and I continued to watch season 3 of Melrose Place.

After lunch we got dressed and ready to go out to play in the snow. We've got a good 12 new inches in the yard. We needed it. The old snow was looking grungy. Scott was out plowing while Walker and I played outside. I dragged the Christmas tree way over to the side yard to the compost bin. When I took it down I just stuffed it out the front door (which we never use) and there it sat for the past 2 weeks. It was heavy to drag and the compost bin felt like it was 3 miles away, but it's good exersize. We also got to do a little sledding, down the "hills" Scott creates when he plows. Short, but steep little slopes for us. It's exhausting walking and playing in the snow.

I just checked to see if we'd have dance classes this evening. The web site said to check back after 2PM. No dance tonight! Yay! I love going to the studio, but it's so fun to have a special snow day where all the regular stuff is called off for a day. Now we can just relax the rest of the day. Scott is taking tonight off so he won't have to drive to work in the worst of it. Maybe we'll drink a little beer tonight. It'll be like a Saturday night for him.

Walker and I are going to make a banana bread. I want to use up the soft, mushy bananas we have left. I hate wasting them. I love cooking and baking with that snowed-in feeling.

The news just mentioned that the power company is expecting outages. Scott is actually hoping to loose power. He wants to try the new generator for real. We did have a practice outage Friday night, but that's not like the real thing. We're all set for anything now.

The snow pile is higher than Walker

Walker loves snow.

When I saw that "Rock of Love II" is a new show, I just had to wonder whatever happened to Jess? I thought Brett Michaels had found true love. Something tells me he wanted to find women more than love. So now they are at it again. The previews show Heather, the crazy chick that tried to win him by getting his name tattooed on her neck. She's baaack... As a judge or something.

Have you seen the show "Celebrity Rehab?" It's so sad and insane. Horrifying really, yet somehow addictive. I can't believe the condition of Jeff Conway. He was so hot as Kenicki in Grease. Crazy. These are the shows I get to watch when I actually get tv time for myself with noone around. It's all that's on late at night, right?

Friday, January 11, 2008

Got a camera phone!

My old cell phone battery is dying. I can charge it up, every night, and I'll still get only about 5 minutes to talk. I make a call and immediately say, "If my phone dies..." I started looking at new batteries before Christmas. I must be cheap because I can't see paying $45 for a new phone battery. I was thinking more like $10 at most. Scott got tired of hearing me talk about it so for my birthday he gave me some cash to get the new battery. I finally made it to the Verizon store Wednesday morning. I really did just want the new battery. But the sales clerk said he just wanted to look up my account, yada, yada. Come to find out it was contract renewal time. You know what that means - a new phone! For free! The free model was the photo phone with a ton of other features that I'll never use. I don't even have a digital camera so this is pretty exciting. I even figured out how to email the pics from the phone to my computer for printing. Scott even got a new camera phone. So exciting. I didn't have to pay anything for these new phones the sales guy said were worth $200 each. I'd NEVER pay that for a phone. So what if we're locked into the contract for another 2 years. I like Verizon anyway and was not thinking of switching. The best part is I still have the birthday cash that now I can spend on something else - as well as call everyone and talk about it and take pictures of everything. All in all a good deal and a good day.

Tomorrow starts "peek week" at the Andover School of Ballet. It's the day parents are invited into the studio to watch class. It's very distracting to the kids, especially the little ones who want to keep running to their parents for hugs. It's distracting to me because I know they are all taking video and photos and it's usually of my backside. Also, I'm not a very comfortable public speaker and it's like giving 5 hours worth of oral reports. But tomorrow is the longest day so I'll get that out of the way first. It's also sort of fun for the parents to finally get to be in the room and see what we've been doing. The director also comes in to talk to the parents first, so it makes the classes go by quickly. But I'm glad my b-day party was last week. I know I'll be exhausted by the end of tomorrow.

We're having lots of rain. Walker and I would prefer it to be snow. But at least the cars are being rinsed off. Of course Scott just paid to have his washed. That is why it's raining.

Picture taken on my new cell phone. Walker in the teacher's room at Steppin' Out. He's haning on an empty clothes rack. I don't know why it's in the teacher's room.

Another cell phone pic. I took it of myself in the car before work Wednesday afternoon in Andover.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Birthday - Girls Night In

We had a great time for my birthday. Just me and Scott and 4 of the best "girls." We ate scallops and bacon, shrimp, chips and dip, nachos and meatball subs. Drinks included frozen strawberry margaritas, beer, wine and tequila shots. Yum.

There was a brief moment of extreme excitement when the fire broke out. All I can say is NEVER open gifts on a table full of candles. Luckily, we put it out quickly and then vacuumed it up and moved on.

We played Taboo for a while then went on upstairs to the music room where we got on our rock star groove. Even the skeptical found her inner rock star! Below are some of the pics, courtesy of Ann and Lisa, the para-professional photographers. They take great pics. Of course the pictures I took will be here in about a month - after I get them developed. I'm still a film user. And I like it that way.

We had to get our "before" shot. In front - Ann (sister-in-law) back - Sue (my sister), Lisa (best friend from high school), Coreen (newer, dear friend), me, Scott. We all have our margaritas. A couple people even added extra tequila.

We love being supportive to Scott. Looks like a bachelorette party pose.

Me and Sue, almost ready to go upstairs to sing.

Me and Lisa, upstairs and almost ready to sing. We're about to sing the Zappa song, "Titties and Beer" that we first learned back in 8th grade. Just a few years ago...

Here we are actually singing Titties and Beer.

Me and Sue singing "Loaded Gun" by Slaughter.

Head banging. You never worry about the neck pain you will feel the next day at this point. It's fun at the time.
Sue singing "Nothin Compares 2 U" by Sinead O'Connor.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Happy New Year

This is from our photo shoot for the Christmas card. Walker is always so cute.
We're back to the regular routine, starting today. I love vacation, but real life is fun too.