Wednesday, August 22, 2007

He's Really All That

There's nothing I enjoy more than getting together with my family and for my birthday dinner, it was as always, highly enjoyable. Of course, what makes these get togethers even more fun these days is the attendance of my 15-month-old nephew. He's so good - the little guy sat at the table all during dinner, enjoying himself, sharing my scallops with me, looking up intensely and nodding when the waiter was talking to him. He was an absolute joy, an angel and just precious. It was also my first experience of hearing him talk (aside from saying Daddy, uh oh, and no). My mother handed him a cracker and clear as day he said "cracker." Later I was in Stride Rite with him and looking at shoes and as I held one up he looked at me and said "shoe." I simply love this little guy!

My absolute favorite picture of the two of us:

The little man:

Enjoying some man time with C:

So cute:

Checking out every grown-up man's favorite store (that's my brother and C off to the left:

Oops, I did it again!

If you can believe it (and I know MANY of you can't) I once again tried my hand at camping with C's family. Again, I was pleasantly surprised by how much fun I had (though I will admit to checking my email via the Blackberry - yep I had service). And again, like last year, I can handle anything for one night. C did have a nice surprise for me - our own tent! Last year we shared one. And by the way, this is how we started by birthday weekend!

Here's some pix!

C setting up our tent - heck it was small but who cares - it was all ours!

The two of us:

Our campsite:

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Whoo hoo!

Whoo hoo! Turns out not only do I have a bunch of time left to take off from work this year, I have a super understanding boss. So I'm doing something totally out of my usual realm, I'm going to take it. I'm starting by taking tomorrow - my girlfriend Jenn is on vacation this week and I want to be part of it. Plus nothing feels better than sitting in my dining room on a Sunday night, typing a quick post and knowing I don't have to be anywhere but at the beach or the outlets tomorrow (the weather will be our deciding factor on which).

I'll be back up online either tomorrow night or Tuesday to fill you in on what's been going on - lots!

Untl then ...

Thursday, August 09, 2007

I'm Going to Be How Old????

Where does the time go? In four days I'm going to be 37 (GULP) - yes 37 - In a nutshell that means in three years I'm going to be 40 (WHEN DID THIS HAPPEN??!!??) and next spring I'm 20 years out of high school (YOU'VE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!).

I guess I never realized that people actually do get old - or that I would.

No significant birthday has affected me tremendously. Perhaps it's because I have a great corp of friends who always made sure I celebrated in style, or my family which always goes out of its way to celebrate all of our birthdays (significant others included). But 37 - Ouch!

As a kid they were always fun because birthdays meant pool parties - one of the perks of being a summer baby!

Course I'm joining a very well known group of celebrities who are 37: Minnie Driver, Lara Flynn Boyle, Mariah Carey, Matthew McConaughey, Vince Vaughn, Uma Thurman, Skeet Ulrich, Heather Graham, Claudia Schiffer, Kelly Ripa, Matt Damon, Ethan Hawke and Jennifer Connelly (all born in 1970 like myself).

If I look at it this way it doesn't seem like a bad club to be a part of :-)

I also share my actual birth date with Susan Saint James, Sarah Brightman, Halle Barry, Danielle Steel and Magic Johnson.

But at the end of the day there's one thing that always makes me feel young - of my group of friends from high school and childhood I'm still the baby - thank God for the summer birthday!

Ain't Nothing Like A New Stove

So the stove we have at the house, although not super old - really was entering its final days months ago, but we persavered and dealt with it. First it wouldn't light every now and then (the oven part). Then it was a bit more consistent and I'd constantly find C on the floor lighting the pilot. (scary to me! though he insisted it really isn't but I'm a fraidy cat about things like that). Keep in mind, that even if it did light - it wouldn't hold heat consistently so you had to be sure to account for that time when cooking.

We did however manage to get through a couple of dinner parties with it no problem. We even managed a dinner party where we had to keep the oven on broil to hold the temperature. But it actually worked out.*

The hope was to not have to buy a new stove until we got down to business to renovating our kitchen, but sometimes you just can't wait.

The straw that broke the camel's back came about a week and a half ago when C went to make cookies - which is not an easy task when you have to keep the stove set on broil to get it to work. Needless to say two cookie sheets full came out a bit overdone. SO it was off to Sears to buy a replacement and say goodbye forever to our
unreliable stove.

So we said goodbye to this:

And said hello to this: (did I mention it has a fifth burner with a griddle) - so cool!

(*Note to Kristi: This is probably part of the reason I haven't broken out the KitchenAid yet - course now I can really get down to it!)

Monday, August 06, 2007

What I Did on My Summer Vacation

After a solid straight year of busting my ass at work (with the exception of a few days off here and there), I finally took some time away from the office.

I began my vacation with an impromptu cookout at mom and dad's – which of course always means some quality time with my nephew.

Next, we traveled to Newport, RI for some rest and relaxation, enjoying the atmosphere and the views and taking in some mansion tours.

We stayed at the lovely America's Cup Inn right in the heart of downtown Newport.

Here's what our room looked like:

And had a yummy, romantic dinner at the Clarke Cook House restaurant right on Bannister's Wharf.

The next day, I took C on a tour of the Breakers. He had never been and we both really enjoyed it. (Guess the trick for me was not to go there for 10 years and then it was all new again)

After Newport, we headed west to Connecticut to see if the casino could give us any luck.

After a nice dinner and an overnight stay there we headed home.

We spent a couple of days relaxing at home, getting things organized, and oh yeah, buying a new stove because the old one simply had to go – too unreliable! More on that in my next post.

Even Miss Molly had a relaxing week:

And I ended my vacation with some beach time with a girlfriend, a kick-ass tan, and finishing up a lot of pleasure reading.

What did I learn from my summer vacation? That one week is not enough. From now on it’s two weeks or bust for this busy girl!

Now to get back into the swing of things at work!