Friday, September 28, 2007

Have a nice trip, see you next fall

Who knew a tiny bird feeder would turn our property in to a bird sanctuary. I almost feel like we should charge admission. But, as anyone in the bird-feeding world knows, those friggin squirrels are so damn rude, nevermind smarter than any PhD I know! Much to their dismay, however, I put up my squirrel-proof feeder last night and let's just say I had a ball this morning watching the little creeps tumble to the ground. (Don't worry it was only a few feet and no animals were hurt venture.) Anyhow, with the free restaurant open for bird dining business, I watched umpteen chickadees enjoy their breakfast along with a woodpecker, some other gray bird I've yet to identify and a pair of cardinals. Love the cardinals.

Free show, lane 6

Here's a good embarrassing story. When I broke my wrist 2 years ago, I stopped swimming at the gym. Makes sense, right? Well, now that I'm at a new gym with a bigger pool, I dediced it was time to take the plunge (literally.) So off I went. I had an enjoyable time, swimming my laps, getting a good workout, soaking in the hot tub afterwards. Oh yes, and admiring the cute old ladies doing their water aerobics class (I know that will be me in 35 years, so I might as well start learning the moves now.) Anyhow, I was a little annoyed because my suit felt awfully large and baggy in weird places. And let's face it -- it's not because I shrunk. So I go home, shower, change, hang the suit to dry. Well, I'm getting ready for bed and go to move the suit. And I notice it feels kind of gritty -- definitely not shiny and slippery like swimsuits -- especially those made for exercise -- are supposed to feel. So I hold it up to investigate and notice that the entire back is basically sheer like a tissue. You know how stuff loses its elacticity if you don't wear it for a long time? Well, say hello my suit. I think the shock of usage and chlorine was simply too much and it fell to pieces! Thankfully it's black but still, I DID walk around in the pool area. And like me, all the other swimmers wear goggles so if they happened to look into lane 6, they must have received a nice show! Guess who's going shopping this weekend?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Clothes in space!

With storage space at a minimum, it was time to get creative with transitioning into the fall wardrobe... a la Space Bags. If you've been sucked into infomercials, or spent too much time at Linens-n-Things, you know what I'm taking about -- those vacuum-packed bags that make your clothes and linens appear like giant MREs as parceled out by the military. At any rate, it was fun stuffing a mountain of skirts and capris into a giant ziploc and suctioning out all the air with my Dyson. If one good thing can come from poor storage options, this is it... (Note to future users: these f-ers are deceptively heavy!!!)

Pods, glorious pods

It's been three years since Kerry left for Los Angeles, and it's been three years since she's seen her stuff. Now that she's moved to Chicago, it was time for an archaeological dig to see what was relegated to the Boston pods back in 2004. I remember her moving out there and literally stufing these things to the gills. I'm not sure whether it was geographical logistics or the sheer reality of what lay inside that kept her away for so long, but I don't blame her for procrastinating on this one. Let's face it: moving sucks, but it was a great reason to get her out here. Kerry and I met on the plane to Scotland back in January 1993 when we were off on a study abroad program. That year was definitely the craziest time in my life, and I'm happy to have shared it with this wacky woman! As I type this, she's UHauling back to Chi-town... I tried to convince her that the Pottery Barn chair I always loved wouldn't fit in the truck, but no such luck. If Kerry looks familiar, you may have seen her in a few local commercials. The one I remember the best was when she was dressed an elf.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Little Suzi Sushi

Move over Easy Bake Oven! And say hello to Bandai's sushi rolling machine for kids. In an age where even the little ones know a good California roll when they see one, this handy device churns out perfect rolls with the turn of a handle. I never had an Easy Bake but I always wanted one. This could be my answer. And it won't burn, either.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Je me rappelle le français.

Learning through osmosis is one thing. Learning through the walls is quite another. In fact, if these walls could talk, they'd be speaking French! Pourquoi, you ask?! Well, beacuse the classroom next to my office belongs to the French teacher. Every now and again I hear familiar phrases and remember (with great enthusiasm) such phrases as Zut allors! and J'ai mal a la tete. In fact, I think I am mal a la tete most of the time when it comes to work. Yesterday we heard Pavarotti singing opera. But isn't he Italian? Anyhow, if you're looking for something fun, try a free translator online. You type in your English phrase, and it spits it out in your choice of languages. Can't speak for its accuracy, but it's c'est amusement pour parler français.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Woofstock or bust!

While the weather was dicey in the morning, it amazingly cleared just in time for our guests to show up for Woofstock! We had an incredible turn-out, with HUNDREDS of Basset Hounds. Long, longer, big, bigger, drooly, droolier, droopy and droopier, they're all such characters. We had costume contests, a "Waddle" in the woods (i.e. a very short walk!) drag races, a maze, agility demonstrations and lots of houndly fun. Our silent auction items were a huge hit and while the final numbers aren't yet in, it looks like this was our most successful event in Woofstock history!
One of my favorite attendees was this crew in the cart on the left -- Muffie and Conan. Adopted by a family a few years ago, these hounds are ancient; one is blind. But what I can't get over is the love this guy has for his hounds, crafting this very hound-specific cart so they can attend such events! Seeing things like this makes all that time I spend with rescue worthwhile. What's even more amazing is that he and his wife just adopted a SECOND pair from us! Granted they're much younger, but it just doesn't get any better than this. Thanks to everyone who supported NEBHR and the hounds! Click here for the online photo gallery.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Rain, rain, go away....

Figures. The one day with crappy weather for the next 10 days has to be Saturday. Woofstock! If anyone can do a rain dance to keep the rain AWAY, I would really appreciate it. I mean, Basset Hounds are stinky just in their normal world. They don't need to be rained on. :( While Woofstock will happen rain or shine, it's much more fun in the sun! Whether you have a hound or not, you're more than welcome to attend the event -- we've got lots of great raffles, goooood stuff in the silent auction, games, contests, and of ourse lots of lowriders to laugh at. Hooray for the hounds! Click for more info on the event and fundraising.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Adventures in gymland

It happened again. I joined a gym. Unlike previous attempts at hard-core fitness, this time I have a few gym buddies with whom I can share my misery... er, fun. To begin with, I got Gary to sign up with me (got a good 'couples' rate) and then Dena, my morning walking buddy and her soon-to-be husband, Frank, are also members. It's a good little club (tho I miss the individual TVs my fancy Boston gyms provided) and the big plus -- it's close to home. So with two days already behind us, I feel quite mighty. And sore. The broken wrist (tho healed from my last surgery a year ago) is so stiff and uncomofortable. I had a hard time with push-ups before.... impossible now. And the current broken toe -- well, let's just say working out doesn't exactly agree with it. But I'm pushing thru the pain and treated myself to some cute new shorts. Is it bad that we stopped at Dunkin' after class???

Friday, September 7, 2007

Run Oliver, Run!

Here's Oliver's digital flip book...

Love the crazy mane blowing in the wind.... (note his fine extension of the left front!)

And check this out -- not a single hoof on the ground!

Wednesday, September 5, 2007


Just to prove that this "busy with freelance work" thing isn't a lie, here's a link to my latest gig with BostonNOW. Living outside the city, I've never even laid eyes upon the publication but sources tell me it does exist. My piece is on page 11 about college ID discounts.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Here Kitty, Kitty... litter cake

This is quite possibly the grossest -- and most hilarious -- confection that's ever been created in my kitchen. The Kitty Litter Cake. It's in honor of my brother's birthday and I know he'll love it. If for nothing else, he should appreciate my artful efforts, shaping the melty Tootsie Rolls to make it look like Kitty was a frequent visitor. If you'd like to make your very own tasty dessert, here's the recipe. Bon appetit!