Thursday, November 5, 2009

A Little Christmas Tip

I can't stress enough how much Wish Lists rock. I know there are people out there who believe they take the mystery and spontaneity out of gift giving. This is true, but consider that sometimes perusing someones gift list can at least tell you what kinds of things someone is interested in, and possibly help with sizes, even if you don't actually buy directly from the list.

Personally I love the Amazon Wish List feature. Not only does Amazon have a great selection of so many things, but if you can make your list accessible to anyone who knows your email address, and even send people the link to it if you feel they could really use some guidance. You can also make wish lists for your kids if you have them, avoiding that annual ritual of having to read the letter he/she/they wrote to Santa to every aunt and cousin in the lower 48.

In addition to putting things on the list that you can get from Amazon, you can also download a button to your computer that will add an item from any website from which you happen to find something you want. It's called the Universal Wish List and you can get it here.

So, please: If you are the slightest bit difficult to buy for, and there are tons of things you or your kids want, or there's any chance I'll get you in a Secret Santa pool: Make a wish list!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

My Sushi very pretty tonight. Just wanted to share.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Conversations With My Son

Me: Please don't blow spit bubbles.

Him: Why not?

Me: It's gross.

Him: But I only blow spit bubbles because I can't blow booger bubbles.

Me: (gags)

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A New Era Dawns...

A lot has happened for me over the last few months. A lot will hopefully be happening over the next few. And if you're reading this, I'll be sharing it with you from wherever I go! That's all I can say for now... Meanwhile, please enjoy this picture of my cat playing in our hamster aquarium. Yeah, I know...

Sunday, February 1, 2009

My Lost Party - Let Me Show You It

As soon as the date was announced for the premiere episode for Lost Season 5 I began planning my Lost Party. My original plan was to have people over for the actual airing, but my wise friend Gerry suggested we should watch that in our own homes, undistracted and uninterrupted. Then we could get together to rewatch it after having time to stew on all the theories that arose. It was a great idea! The conversation, debates and laughs were in abundance and we all had a great time. What follows are pictures of what I did. Any of these pictures can be enlarged if you click on it, if you'd like to see more detail.

The Party Decorations:

Of course, the obligatory palm trees...

But this one has a little Hurley hanging out underneath, as drawn by my 5 yr old son.

I put a generic tropical themed tablecloth on the table and thought it would be cute to add a little extra Lost touch...

...that led to an idea to add Lost quotes all over the plain white area in the middle of the tablecloth. I wish I had thought of this earlier; then it would have been completely filled. More on the jars you see there in the food section.

The Party Food:

This is the sign I made to hang over the "Hurley Buffet." The drawing of Hurley in the van was drawn by James Boudreaux II and I found it at his site, The Lost Boys Project, where he has lots of great comics based on the Lost characters.

Hurley's Island Buffet:
"Where if you eat more comfort food,
You won't go around shooting people!"

Here's a closer look at the jars from earlier. For some unknown reason I did not get a shot of the jar of Dharma Ranch Dip and the veggie platter. Rest assured, it looked awesome.

The table had two platters on it. The top has mangoes and papayas, for obvious reasons and the bottom has pepperoni and cheese in homage to Cheech's sandwich in "The Lie". Too bad my budget didn't allow for caviar or we so would have had those sandwiches, even if I had to guilt my guests into trying a bite.

Tower of Goodies!

What's on it?

Ho-Ho's (watch out for dead rock stars!), Dharmalars,
Chocolate Cream Cookies

Next to the Tower of Goodies was a crock pot full of Mr. Cluck's Chicken Shack Breaded Baked Chicken Wings with homemade blue cheese dressing. They were awesome, dude.

The Frozen Donkey Wheel:
A lime margarita-style blender drink. The lime is cut to look like it has spokes coming out of it. And it was all kinds of yummy. Notice the Connect 4 pieces surrounding the drink. Somehow I also forgot to get a picture of the game as well.

Party Favors:
I made Dharma Fish Biscuits... really just sugar cookies with cookie icing.

After I wrote "DHARMA" on them and put them in bags they looked like this. I also gave lil' Dharma polar bears. How cute are they?

I had a lot of fun doing this and hope to do it again after the season finale. Off to find a recipe idea for a Flaming Frogurt...

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Happy Lost Day!!

This is the story of Dave, who has never seen Lost. His friend Matt watches the show, and assures him that not only is it the best show ever, but that he will not be able to just start watching it. Dave decides to catch up on all 4 seasons by watching them straight through, no breaks. Most major WTF moments are mentioned so consider this a SPOILER zone.


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Kinda Sorta Live Blogging My Jury Duty Pt. 7

The rest of the evening was nothing to thrilling. My husband and I enjoyed some time alone in town together, some beers and a half dozen raw oysters each. We came home and relieved my sister-in-law from her duty and had dinner at home, even though she said we could stay out and have dinner in a big persons restaurant for a change if we wanted to. But it had been a long day for both of us and we were eager to be home.

So that was my day. I hope it wasn’t too boring. Since I posted it as if I had really been live blogging it will appear backwards, but I don't know how to fix that. All I can suggest is scrolling down to the first post and reading up. And yeah, I know that technically speaking, because the posts did not go up as the events happened this is not live blogging, it’s journaling. Also, I know it’s way too wordy to be live blogging. I’m considering it practice for another time. And it was fun.

The day after: My son does in fact have conjunctivitis. He is home today and possibly tomorrow, which kind of sucks because he’s not sick, he’s full of energy but he’s still contagious so he can’t go to school. And he left his boots at school so we’re stuck inside. I won’t be live blogging this, as you can probably guess why.

Kinda Sorta Live Blogging My Jury Duty Pt. 6

The judge in charge of the jury pool comes to the room and we all assemble. He tells us there is good news and bad news. The good news is that eight jurors have been selected for trial. The bad news, the rest of us won’t be able to have that pleasure. I’m like, “What the…? Oh, we’re getting sprung! Yay!” I skedaddle out of there, and after calling my husband with the good news we agree to meet at Faneuil Hall for a couple beers when he gets out of work at 1:30. He also informs me that he heard from his sister who was called by my son’s school. They were sending him home early because he has conjunctivitis for the third time this school year. She was on her way to pick him up.

I walk over and see that there are trucks full of police barriers, and two of the local news stations are setting up trucks in front of the historic building. I ask a cop what’s going on and he looks at me like I’m an idiot. “The State of the City Address,” he says with a tone that tells me he wants to add, “you moron” but knows he’s not allowed to. I, feeling stupid and not knowing what to say, say “Oh… is that done here?” He practically rolls his eyes and says “Yes.” I walk away feeling embarrassed but then start thinking, “Ok, maybe as a resident of Boston I should know such a thing, but he doesn’t know where I live. What if I was a tourist, how would I know then? Huh? What if I arrived on a plane like, an hour ago?” I kick myself for not answering the cop with a “Guten Tag” and a bad German accent. I go inside because their used to be a shop that sold all political-themed stuff. I guess it closed (imagine that) so I look into an all Boston-themed store because I spot some ties featuring things like the Constitution and presidential signatures. (Did I mention my husband’s birthday is coming up?) The lady behind the counter asks, “So where you visiting from?” “Uh… I’m from Boston.” “Well, welcome to our city!” “Okaaaaay… thanks.” Next door to her there’s a sales person standing behind a counter fast asleep. I think they may have a gas leak in that building. Or maybe some 18th century mold hanging around affecting people's brains.

I head over to the Salty Dog, our favorite place in the city, to wait for my hubby to join me. I sit and order a beer. I pull out my phone to text hubby my whereabouts and when he texts back my phone, sitting on the counter rings. And by ring I mean it screams “BLAH BLAH BLAH”, for that is my ringtone. The bartendress jumps and looks at me, then at the phone. She laughs and says, “Oh my God, how old is that phone?” I feel old and pathetic. I make sure to work into the conversation that I have a Facebook page so she thinks I’m cool again. She acts incredulous. I feel old again.

Kinda Sorta Live Blogging My Jury Duty Pt. 5

About 6 minutes into “The Beginning of the End” (The first episode of Lost Season 4) we get the call. I pack up everything and follow the officer and 25 or so other potential jurors to the elevator and up 3 floors to a courtroom. This courthouse is fairly new so the courtroom was quite nice. One of the jurors was a really cute kid. I couldn’t stop looking at him. I finally realized he looked exactly like a teenaged version of Zachary Quinto. The judge swore us in, and asked the questions about bias, and objectivity, did we know anyone related to the case, blah blah. I am Juror 18 today. After calling people up, discussing it, and excusing a couple people they were up to juror number 16. Then they excused Juror number 8, and they called Juror number 17, lil’ Sylar. I was next.

Meanwhile, all this time I’m sitting next to Juror 19, who I am sure is a wee bit insane. When council approaches the sidebar, they play a white noise to drown out their voices, which I thought is a great idea. She, however, apparently has bionic hearing because she immediately plugged up her ears and dropped her head. They played it about 4 times, each time she would look at me as if to say, “Oh, the torture, the torture!” and then slump over forward. The rest of the time she rocked side to side rolling her head around in a circle at this ridiculously slow tempo that just didn’t seem humanly possible. I inched as far away from her on the bench as I could. I remember now, she was the one who was in the bathroom when I arrived. So she’s insane and has diarrhea. Dear God, please don’t make me end up sequestered with this woman.

Luckily, for now, Juror 17 was the last picked for this particular trial, (except that if I had to be on a jury I would want to be on it with #17.) (Hubba hubba, if you catch my drift.) (what am I, 85?) so back downstairs we all went. Except for that moment when the elevator opened and I got out. I noticed everyone else were not getting out and were just staring at me. I realized I wasn't on the right floor and got back on, but not one of them said anything. Thanks, guys. So now I’m back in the pool. The guy said they had three judges call for a jury today, two in the municipal courts - both criminal cases - and one in juvenile court. If they don’t plead out then I’m the next juror to be called.

Kinda Sorta Live Blogging My Jury Duty Pt. 4

So we finished our talk from the judge and the video of what is supposed to happen if we get seated. Or is it empaneled. I’m not sure what the difference is. Meanwhile my awesome seat I acquired sucks, since I am under the air conditioning (in January??) and my hands are freezing. Meanwhile out the window I see a lot of lawyery-looking people hustling in, and a lot of defendanty-looking people looking agitated, accompanied by a lot of worried mothery-looking people. Apparently there are three courts in this building, the Juvenile, the Municipal and the Housing courts.

We have until 10 to goof off then at some point in the next three hours, apparently someone may come down and get us. Or we might just sit here. I’m fine with the waiting. There’s no wifi still, but I got my desktop cleared off nicely*, so I’m all set not going anywhere near a courtroom, nosiree, no how. I have had jury duty three times in the last four years. They say that if you get called, and you have proof of serving within the previous three years you don’t have to come back again. But when I got called in ‘07 and I said I had been in already in ‘05, they told me they reserve the right to call people in before their time is up and I had to show. I didn’t even try to postpone this one because of that. But the court officer who gave the talk about what we should expect just said I should have sent my deferment in. I don’t even know where my ‘07 proof is because I didn’t think they’d take it seriously. They seem to make the rules up as they go. The last two times I served I was just begging to be placed on a jury. I was excited for it. But now that my hubby has to be at work at 6 am, and my son has to be at school at 8 am, being empaneled would mean my husband would have to actually miss work just to get the boy to school. And I guess they can’t go in late in his job, so now if I get placed it would mean a possible job loss for my husband. I know an employer can’t legally fire a person on a jury, but in this case my husband isn’t protected the same way. So what do you bet I get on a trial?

*And in an emergency I have the first six episodes of Lost Season 4 with me.

Kinda Sorta Live Blogging My Jury Duty Pt. 3

I need to be at the courthouse at 8:00, and I’ve gotten off the subway at 7:20. I can see the courthouse from the station so I have oodles of free time. I wander over to the Dunkin’ Donuts and go in. I really don’t like Dunkies for food but I thought maybe I should force myself, since when I did get ridiculously hungry I would want something. I can’t decide on what I want, and decide to leave, but I did enjoy the tiny little old lady, probably a great-grandmother, with the Razr phone texting like a fiend standing in line next to me. I decide to just see if I can get into the courthouse since I’m tired of walking. Hey, they’re open early! So I go through security, and check in at the desk. I’m the fourth one there. I stake out the room with the tables and spot the perfect chair by the window near an outlet, but first I want to go to the bathroom. Since I don’t know how safe it is at this point to leave my stuff unattended I bring it all with me. It’s occupied. It’s taking f-o-r-e-v-e-r. I’m dancing around, I gotta go so badly! Plus I don’t want that prime piece of real estate I scoped out to go to anyone else. I’m starting to get antsy. Finally I hear the toilet flush and the sink running. I hear a towel being ripped off… I’m waiting… waiting… still waiting… and the toilet flushes again. So I wait some more. And some more. The toilet flushes again. The sink runs again. The towel rips again. I can’t freakin’ take this any longer!! I start jiggling the handle furiously to let her know she’s not the only person in the world. Ok, I actually do the little “try to open the door as if I just now arrived and had no idea someone was in there, my mistake” move, but I was thinking furiously as I did it. If you’re wondering, I did make it without an accident. Just barely.

Kinda Sorta Live Blogging My Jury Duty Pt. 2

I hopped a bus around 6:45 right in front of my house, In the 10 years I’ve lived there that’s the first time ever that I’ve done that. Why yes, I am in fact a spoiled suburban-raised WASP who only drives everywhere, why do you ask? The bus driver plowed up into the snowbank to get me which, actually I thought was pretty helpful. The next guy we picked up tried to hop into the street to board when the bus approached and almost got himself run over. She scolded him for one really long minute before sending him to his seat. Yes, she ordered him like a schoolmarm to a recalcitrant student. He and I shared an eye roll. I mean, she was right, what he did wasn’t smart, if he had known what she was going to do, but he didn’t, so I didn’t think she had to be so bitchy about it. Moments later, stuck behind a line of cars, the woman pulled the bus into the oncoming lane and gunned it. Yes, gunned it into oncoming traffic. Suddenly, before she hit the car in front of us she turned left, while still accelerating, into a bus-only cut-through. I looked at Almost-Squashed Guy and mouthed “What The FUCK?”

We got to the station in one piece, miraculously, and I hopped on an inbound red line train. All the seats were either full or in between people. I figured, I’m a tough broad, I’ll just grab on to this pole, lean up against it and enjoy the ride. Moments after leaving the station, I hear a voice say, “Excuse me.” I look down and the elderly gentleman sitting on the end of the row I’m standing next to is looking up at me. I think, “Aw, I’ll bet he’s going to try to offer me a seat, but I won’t take it, I should tell hi—” “Excuse me miss, but you’re standing too close to my elbow, I need to spread out here.” His friend laughs and says “He has a space issue.” I do not say “Then why the fuck is he on public transportation?” Instead I smile coldly and move about 6 inches away and make a note that I seem to be swearing a lot this morning. The next stop I grab a seat and another fellow stands in the exact same spot I had been in. He does not get the “excuse me, but” from the guy. Interesting. I switch trains and at the next stop a man gets on who asks if he can have the seat next to me. I say “of course”, and he squeezes in. In the time it takes to get to the next stop I know that he thinks the seats in trains should reflect societies growing backsides, that he was one of 11 kids and that as a kid he wore the same size as his older brother, except in a “husky”. So, is this pretty much what I’ve been missing all these years in the public transportation experience?

Kinda Sorta Live Blogging My Jury Duty

I just recently learned about Live-blogging (credit goes to JoJOpinionated) and I thought I’d try it out today since I will have absolutely nothing better to do. Except maybe work on my novel. Which I should but I know I won't. Anyway, since there does not appear to be wifi at the moment I am going to write entries as if they were live, and then post them when I get home, or when wifi pops up, which I’m hoping will happen when more businesses around the area are open. At the moment it’s 7:57.

I woke up around 4:45 this morning. Strike that, I got up around 4:45. At 4 am my son screamed out that he couldn’t open his eyes. When I got in there they were crusted shut, but when I came back with the warm washcloth and eye drops (we’ve been through this before) he said, and I quote, “Go away. I’m sleeping now.” Little bastard. Who I love with all my heart, no, really. So this means my dear sweet sister-in-law, who, while a wonderful auntie, does not have kids of her own, and now has to deal with my little handful’s newest conjunctivitis battle. I pity her. This also might mean she has to keep him home for the day. I weep for her. I’m not kidding. She arrived at 6:20 while I was making sandwiches for me and the boy. I meant to skip my shower to make my self look less appealing to any attorneys that might be eyeballing me for their jury but in the end opted to shower, thus making me late. This means I have a sandwich and two dinky bags of chips. This will not last me. I could have stopped for breakfast but I honestly don’t like breakfast foods unless A) I make them or B) they are at a greasy spoon diner. I want to sit and savor runny fried eggs, toast and maybe some nice corned beef hash. I don’t do croissants, donuts, soggy bagels, egg white flatbread whozywhatzies. This limits me a bit. So I guess I’ll eat my sammich for breakfast and roll the dice at lunch for something in the area. The upshot of skipping breakfast is that I got to the courthouse bright and early and now I’m set up at a table, near a plug, by the window. This will make the torture easier to bear. But more on that later.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Conversations With My Son

Son: (walking into kitchen) I need help drawing a boat.
Me: I need help cleaning the kitchen.
Son: (turns around) I can draw a boat.

And a bonus classic "Conversation" from two years ago:

Son: Mommy. Mommy. Mommy. Mommy.
Me: Patience, young Padawan.
Son: (looking perplexed) I'm not a Padawan. I'm a Pada-three*!

(*He's five now, in case you were not aware.)