Monday, December 31, 2007

Lazy Holidays

It seems we get very lazy during the holiday season. I know for sure that I have relaxed my rules. I have been eating anything and everything, and not exercising with regularity. I will enjoy it for the next 2 days, but then a new year begins. It is time to eat right, exercise, work on the mind, and improve the spirit. But for today and tomorrow, it is all about beer and relaxing!


Thursday, December 27, 2007

Workin' is for Chumps!

5 1/2 days off and now I am back to work. Thanks goodness I only work today and a 1/2 day tomorrow. This working thing stinks!

Here is a brief recap of our holiday:

December 21 - I worked a 1/2 day, and Bill came to pick me up. He finally got to see our offices and meet a few colleagues he had not met prior to this visit. We ate lunch, went to the bike store to get his Christmas present (new pedals and shoes), then the museum. It was so wonderful to see a special exhibit when there was no crowd. There was no pushing, little noise, and we could really appreciate the landscapes at our own pace. We finished the day with a stop at Big Boss for a beer, dinner at Tyler's, and home for a DVD (The Simpsons Movie).

December 22 - We went down to Southern Pines to help Bill's parents. Bill cleaned their gutters while his mom and I supervised. I can't even remember what we did after coming home. I think we watched The Sting.

December 23 - We hung out at home, but did take our sweet puppy Christmas shopping at Pet Smart. She loves going there and picked out some treats for herself. We sent the evening at a Christmas party with friends. When we got home, we watched The Bourne Ultimatum.

December 24 - The entire Morrison clan was together for the first time in 2 years when the crew came up to our place. We met our new nephew, Ryan, and had lunch with the family. It was a nice day to play with the kids and socialize. That evening, we watched Christmas Vacation.

December 25 - We got up and followed the Krueger family tradition. We opened our stockings first, then ate breakfast before opening the remainder of our gifts. I think Bill really enjoyed the gifts I got him and I know I love the gifts I received. I got 2 new ornaments for the tree (a high heeled shoe and a handbag), a book, a robe, and 2 special surprises. Bill gave me a box filled with rocks. I thought it was part of another gift, but Bill said I should check the entire box. At the bottom, I found a gift card for a hot stone massage. I can't wait to get that - I have always wanted to try it. Bill also upgraded my diamond earrings. I have been wearing them every day since Christmas. I got running gear from Dad, Bunny, and Jamie, and chick lit books from my best pal in California. We quickly dressed after opening our gifts, and headed to So. Pines once again. The kids were already hyped up when we arrived, but seeing more gifts made them even crazier. They really liked the cars we got them, and played with them the rest of the day. We had traditional turkey dinner, and just enjoyed family for the rest of the day. When we got home, we watched the first half of The Holiday (which I received with Harry Potter 5 and a gift card from my favorite store, Nordstrom, from my sister-in-law) and will watch the rest tonight.

December 26 - I got up at 6:00 am to go shopping. Bill thought I was crazy to be wasting a vacation day. I got to the mall at about 7:20. It was not too crowded, except for the hundreds of people waiting outside of Crate and Barrel. I bought some holiday things at Pottery Barn, gift wrap and stickers at Hallmark, 2 shirts at Banana Republic, and a few other odds and ends. I was out of there by 10:00. I went to Barnes & Noble to exchange 2 books, then to Target and lunch. I got to the other mall, but did not stay long as I was very tired. The shopping this year was not as good as I expected. I think the fact that it was raining did not help either. I headed home at about 1:30 pm. Bill came home about 4:30 and we headed to a nice dinner before seeing the stage play White Christmas. It was a very nice way to end the holiday.

I wonder what we will do for New Year's?

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas 2007!

What a fantastic holiday season!! My Christmas was fantastic. I have so much to share, but I will post it all later. I had a great day today and received many wonderful gifts. The best gifts I got, however, were 4 1/2 days with my husband, and 2 days with the entire Morrison clan. Family is what this season is all about, and I am so thankful that I was able to be with mine.
Merry Christmas to all!!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Last Work Day Before Christmas!

Yeah!! Today is my last work day before Christmas. I am really lucky - my company closes for 3 days at Christmas, so we will be off December 24-26. I am taking a half day today. Bill is going to pick me up at 1:00 pm. I am excited for him to see our new offices and to see all of the decorations we have up. We will go to lunch, then a little Christmas shopping, and a trip to the art museum. I am ready to leave now.

It has been a great holiday season so far. My big boss gave us gifts this morning. We all received a beautiful holiday plate with a $10 gift card for Chick-fil-a. It was a very sweet gift, and one that will be used. I have been very lucky with the gifts I have received so far - I love them all. My office mate gave me a lovely pair of tiger eye earrings yesterday. It is not strictly about gifts, though. I just feel lighter and brighter during the holiday season. Everyone is cheery and in good moods. I love Christmas music and all the lights. It's like Scrooge says - I need to find a way to keep Christmas in my heart all year long. That sounds like a good goal for 2008 (among many others!).

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Not Much to Report...

Things are slowing down as the big holiday approaches. Work has been quiet, and I know it will be dead tomorrow. Luckily, I am taking a 1/2 day, so I will be out of here at 1:00pm. Bill has the whole day off (as well as the 4 following it), so we are going to go to see an exhibit at the art museum in the afternoon.

We did have a nice event yesterday. The three of us from accounting went out with the 4 ladies of reimbursement. We are all considered finance, but we have never done anything in a large group. It was nice to celebrate the season and December birthdays with the 7 of us. We even got coffee after our lunch, and we spent a few minutes browsing in Barnes & Noble (we were already there to get Starbucks). It was a nice way to kill 2 hours in a work day. Gotta love those work lunches!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Just clicked over to

I always check to check out the latest celebrity happenings. The headline this morning:

Britney Spears' sister is pregnant!! Her 16 year-old sister is 12 weeks pregnant.

Wow, the white trash runs deep in that family.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

A Bad Break is a Good thing

My day started with a bang. I was trying to place the sweet potato casserole I made for the company holiday potluck in the oven when I made an unfortunate shift. The glass lid of the Corning dish slipped off the top and shattered into about 200 pieces on the floor. I thought "Oh, great, that's how this day is going to be."

Well, I am pleased to say that was the worst part of my day. I arrived at work to find out that I had won a contest from the local newspaper. I will be receiving a copy of The Bourne Ultimatum on DVD. I should have it before the weekend.

My supervisor then asked if we could go over my one year evaluation (if is a little early, but I think she wanted to get it done prior to the holidays). It was the best review I have ever received. There are some places I need to continue to improve, but it was a very good review overall. I am so happy with my success at work, and I will be seeing a bump in my paycheck come January.

When I arrived back at my desk after the review, a Christmas present I purchased for Bill had arrived. I was so worried that it would not get here for Christmas, and it arrived with a week to spare.

We had our holiday potluck lunch, and everyone had a good time. The food was wonderful, the "Dirty Santa" gift exchange was fun. I got a DVD copy of "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation." I have never seen the movie all the way through, so I look forward to watching it soon.

After lunch, my supervisor gave us our Christmas gifts. She got me a 2008 calendar of 365 days of shoes. I love it!! It is so me. I can't wait to get to 2008 so I can begin looking at all of the glorious shoes! She gave me the perfect gift, and I am thrilled.

I can hardly wait to see what tomorrow brings...
PS - Don't you love Bumble Beer? My favorite holiday cartoon and my favorite beverage all in one!!

Monday, December 17, 2007

A Niece, please!

We just found out yesterday that my sister-in-law, Sally, is pregnant with her second child (Matthew will be 4 next month). We are thrilled to be getting a new addition to the family! After 3 nephews, I know that I am really hoping that this baby will be a girl (and so is my mother-in-law!). I don't think we will have many more chances!

2nd Annual Hoilday Party

Bill and I hosted our second annual holiday party this past Saturday night. The turn out was not as high as last year, but the people who are most important to us did show up. Our friends are the greatest. It was pouring rain, and they still came. A few had to overcome babysitting problems (our neighbors bought their 3 year old daughter at our request and she was absolutely delightful). Many had scheduling conflicts (Janet and Dan stopped by at 11:00 pm after seeing our lights on - they had been to 2 other parties already). Some even worked while at our house (Terry and Jon hooked up our big screen so that the HD feature now works properly - after 2 1/2 years!). Best of all was just to share the holidays with our dearest friends. It was a great evening (after massive stress levels earlier in the day) and I am already looking forward to our next party.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Fraud finds us

Darn if I don't get a phone call this morning from our credit card company asking about suspicious charges. Three strange charges posted last night from a I knew they were not mine, but Bill thought they could have been business related. I decided to check out the website to see what the company did. Well, it is adult websites. The company Bill purchased from was So, I had to call the credit card company back and confirm that the charges were fraudulent.

Our account was shut off immediately. I asked when I could expect my new credit cards with new account numbers, and was told 7-10 business days. That long at Christmas time!! I told the rep that would not work. Luckily, she was able to expedite the claim and I will get the cards on Monday. Of course, I have to be home to sign for the package between 8 am and noon. I will be using the 4 hours of comp time my boss just gave me so I can sit at home and wait for the cards. I guess I should not complain - I could be with out Visa for 10 days!!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Most Wonderful Time?

So, it's December - the most wonderful time of the year. It is wonderful, but it is also tough. It seems that I am constantly running around and doing things. First, we decorated the house. Then, I sent out 75 Christmas cards. I seem to be at the mall all the time, and I am still looking for presents. I am wrapping gifts in the evening and in the morning. Tonight, I am dropping off gifts to mail to Boston at the UPS store on the way home, then we are going grocery shopping for our party. Bill and I will spend the rest of the time to Saturday evening cooking and cleaning. I still need to finds gifts for two of our nephews, Bill's parents, and Bill. On top of it all, it is year end for my company and our auditors arrived today. Luckily, they will leave on Friday. Then, we have our holiday potluck for work next week, a council holiday dinner for JLDOC, and more shopping.

I love Christmas. It is the most wonderful time of the year. I am really looking forward to my 5 day vacation, though.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Illegal Aliens

The local paper had a front page story about the outgoing system chief for the state's community colleges says that illegal aliens should be let in to the schools. His reasoning is that with the huge amount of illegal immigrants in this area, we need them to be educated and able to take more demanding jobs. It would be a strain to have to support them if they were not educated.

I see his point, but if these people are smart enough to attend college, can't they become American citizens? I don't understand why our country gives so much to people who will not stand up and become our citizens. Why should we support you if you are not here by legal means? Why should a freeloader get the same benefits are a citizen? If my taxes go to support the community colleges, I want to support people who are citizens who will be giving back to this country over time. It may not be politically correct, but it is how I feel.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Jingle All the Way

On Saturday, Bill and I participated in the Jingle Bell Run in Raleigh. It was a 5K race benefiting the Arthritis Foundation. What a great day for the race! The temperature was cool, but not cold, and the skies were clear and filled with sunshine. Race participants were given jingle bells to tie to their shoes, and several runners were in holiday garb . I wore my red running shirt and had my Santa earrings as well as my jingle bells on. Santa Claus was even there to cheer for the runners. I guess it was the holiday atmosphere that got me running faster. I set a personal best for a 5K. I was pretty darn excited. I think it helped to have a few friends in the race, one who I kept pace with for the whole course. She really pushed me at the end and helped me to sprint for the finish. I am happy to say that we ended with the same official time.

What did we do to celebrate our great race? Go to the Sauce, of course, for a few celebratory beers.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Free Wings and Beer

Our local radio station, 96 Rock, is currently hosting a contest for free wings and beer. You sign up online for your company, and if you are chosen, the radio morning DJ will bring chicken wings and beer to your workplace. So, I signed up about 2 weeks ago, and put the contest out of my mind.

Yesterday, my home phone rang at about 8:30 am. It was the radio station. My entry had been selected and they wanted to bring the food out that afternoon. Well, wouldn't you know it, but we were having a catered breakfast that morning. I told them to come on out anyway. The DJ, Demitri, brought up 100 wings (our president told me to order 50 more so we would have enough and expense it) and a 12 pack of beer (Bud Light, but it was free). He recorded sound bites of about 5 employees talking about our company and/or themselves. It was funny and light (and was played this morning at 6:40 am).

We enjoyed the wings (although I think most people were still full from breakfast) and really enjoyed the beer. How many times can you drink beer at work during lunch?

Thursday, November 29, 2007

My Type of Christmas Tree

Gosh, I wish I had thought of it! How clever!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Thanksgiving is gone

Boy, this holiday weekend went by quickly!! Here is a recap:

Thanksgiving Day: Bill and I ran in the Gallop and Gorge 8K race in the morning. I thought I was going to die for a while during the race. My legs felt like lead in the beginning, then I got so hot! It was in the mid to upper 70s on Thanksgiving Day and I was dressed for winter jogging. I pushed through and really ran as fast as I could in the last 3/4 mile. I finished at about 1:08, and I wanted to finish 1:10. Bill ran it in about 45 minutes. I think we were both pleased.

We headed home to start cooking, and Bill's parents came over. We had the traditional turkey dinner with all the fixings. It was really good. We were pleased how well everything came out and it was all delicious. We watched Evan Almighty after dinner (it was better than I expected - we all enjoyed it).

Black Friday: We got up early to see Bill's parents off. I did not wake up at 2:00 am to head to the stores. I didn't even head to the mall until about 2:30 pm. I only went for about 2 hours. I was unimpressed with the so called sales. I bought something for Bill (but not for Christmas - it was for immediate use) and a sweater for myself. I was rather disappointed.

I had tickets to the hockey game, so Heather and I went to the game while Terry and Bill hung out. It was a great game. The Canes looked good in the first period and went into intermission with a 1-1 tie. They looked horrible in the second with only 3 shots on goal. The score was 3-1 Tampa by the second intermission. To their credit, the Canes came back in the 3rd period and got the crowd behind them. They pulled out the come from behind victory with a nice 4-3 win. We met the guys for drinks after the game.

Saturday: Bill wasn't feeling well, so we had a very lazy day. We took Sammy for a walk, but that was about it. The Dawgs beat GA Tech!!!

Sunday: I went to Pottery Barn for a free class on holiday decorating. It was a great class, and inspired me to do our decorating. I did shop for a little while (I got one present and a new holiday dress for myself), then headed home. Bill and I decorated the whole house and put up the tree. He was wonderful helping me with the decorations. It was fun to trim the tree with someone.

Next thing we knew, the long weekend was history. I don't know how it goes by so quickly. I hope that you had as wonderful a weekend was we had and that your Thanksgiving was wonderful, too.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

The Night Before Thanksgiving

I am stuck at work. Almost everyone has left, but no one officially closed the office, so here I sit. I usually get off at 5:30 pm. I have had nothing to do since about 2:00. I do have things to do at home, though. I need to bake a pumpkin pie, and Bill and I need to get our race packets for tomorrow. It would be nice to tidy the house as well, but I have almost given up on that thought. At least I was able to clean and prepare the guest bedroom last night. I cleaned the dining room on Sunday, so two rooms will look good. I am trying not to panic - it won't do any good anyway.

The heck with it - I am leaving at 5:00 pm.


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I knew it would be too much

This past weekend I participated in a JL project which we call "Extra Hands." In these projects, we do a one day volunteer activity in our community. These events are usually great fun and really help people. On Sunday, we served a Thanksgiving dinner at The Durham Rescue Mission.

In preparation for this event, the organizers sent out a spreadsheet with items that we needed to bring. I checked it out and went for an easy pick - vanilla ice cream. I was asked to bring 8 gallons of vanilla ice cream, and my friend was asked to bring 8 gallons of chocolate. I thought this was OK - until I went to the grocery store.

I realized that a gallon of ice cream is not the normal size people buy. A gallon of ice cream is one of those huge bucket. Those buckets cost $6.00 each, if you are lucky. Do you think I was going to spend $50 on ice cream?? Heck, no. I wrote 3 e-mails to the organizers telling them that I thought there was going too much ice cream, and that the cost was too expensive for what is supposed to be a volunteer activity. I was really quite pissed, and almost dropped out of the whole project. The best thing I did was to get the other lady involved, too. When she found out how expensive it would be, she agreed it was too much. Finally, the organizers compromised with us and asked us to bring 3 gallons each.

We used one gallon of vanilla and one of chocolate. I am very glad I stuck to my guns.

Check out Free Rice

My colleague, Rebecca, found a cool new website today called Free Rice. The site has a vocabulary game on it where you are given a word with 4 possible definitions. If you choose the correct definition, 10 grains of rice are donated to the United Nations to fight world hunger. If you miss a word, your difficulty level will go down. You can play for as long as you like. Have fun and help prevent hunger!!

**We checked out the website on Snopes and it's good!!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Hangin' with The Gravy Boys

Bill and I went to a little restaurant in Pittsboro last night to have dinner and see our neighbor play with his band, The Gravy Boys.

When I first heard my neighbor was in a band, I immediately pictured a rock band. That is the style of music that I listen to, so I just made an assumption that that was the sort of music he was playing. Tom sent us a link to their website, and I listed to some clips from their CD. The music is Americana in style - kid of a down home, bluesy, folksy mix. I was terribly disappointed. Tom is a good friend, so we went to see him play. Boy, were were surprised.

The Gravy Boys are absolutely amazing live. Their music is so pure - no electronics masking their sound - just guitar, stand-up bass, harmonica, and sometimes a fiddle or banjo thrown in. Last night, we saw them for the second time. I think we have now become even bigger fans of The Boys. If you live in the local area, do yourself a favor and look for The Gravy Boys' next performance. I am sure that you will become a fan as well.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Young Again

Last night, Bill and I went to the Hurricanes game with our friends M&J. The game was horrible - the Canes never found any of their usual fire. They lost in a disgusting 3-0 showdown. We left the game early and went downtown to a new club. My colleague was hosting a party for his social club. The 4 of us went in, and it was like stepping back into the days of college. I felt really old - there were so many 20 year olds there. Then we had a drink or two and the band came on, and we remembered how much fun it is to dance and get crazy. It turned out to be a really great night.

Post #250!!
Sauce beer #102!!

Friday, November 16, 2007


This week marks the 10th anniversary of my mother's death from lung cancer. It is such a surreal thing. It doesn't seem like it has been 10 years, but at the same time, it does feel like it has been that long.

My mother and I were great friends. I was an only child, and my dad traveled when I was a kid. I was always shy, but I did have a few good friends. I think I spent more time with my mom than any other person on the planet. She was a homemaker, so she was always there for me when I got home from school. On my days off from school, we would go shopping together (guess that's where I get my love of the mall, huh?) We would eat dinner together, we would watch TV together, and if I were sick, we would lay in bed all day together. She was the most amazing woman in the world. She never ceased to surprise me with the things she knew.

One day, our car was acting up. She popped the hood, looked at the engine, and determined what the problem was. I don't remember what it was specifically (I did not inherit that trait), but she did fix the car. I was amazed. It shouldn't be a shocking thing. After all, this was the woman who won the powder puff drag race in college. It's how she first met my dad.

I only wish she were still here to teach me more things. We had 26 wonderful years together, and I know I will see her again someday.

PS - Don't cry Maggy. I know you miss her , too. Just remember the good times and that she and I both love you.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Nothing like the smell of poop in the morning

I knew there was something wrong with the dog. I just didn't know how bad it was. She seemed restless all night, and was messing with me at about 5 am. It turns out she has explosive diarrhea. My poor baby!! There was some in the master bath, some in the hall, two spots in the dining room, and the bomb was dropped in the kitchen. Bill was the lucky guy to fine it. He cleaned the kitchen (the smell was absolutely sickening) while I started on the dining room. While I was scrubbing the carpet, my sweet girl threw up in the living room. That is not the way I wanted to wake up this morning.

I checked on her at lunch and she seemed just fine. There were no surprises. I hope the same holds true when we get home this evening. Two bombs in one day would be too much!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

My Honey Can Do!

My honey had a very productive Sunday. He hung the bicycles from the ceiling in the garage to get them out of the way of the cars. He hung 2 shelves in the bar so we can enjoy the various beer glasses we have gotten at The Sauce. He hung the new curtain rods and curtain in the dining room as well. Major brownie points for my baby! The best part - after installing the curtains, he said he really liked them and wondered if I was going to get the same set up for the living room. Guess what we will be doing this weekend?

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Black Rules!!

The Georgia Bulldogs showed up to play Auburn yesterday in new black jerseys. It is something that the seniors wanted to do for their last game between the hedges. It worked beautifully!!

The Dawgs smashed the Auburn Tigers 45-20 in a fantastic football game. I am thoroughly impressed with red shirt Freshman running back Keoshawn Marino. He is going to be the future on Dawg football. He, and the rest of the team, looked great yesterday against one of our bigger rivals. Now, we just need that horrible orange crew from Tennessee to lose one of their last 2 games.

We called my sister-in-law twice during the game. There was no answer, but we did leave messages for the Auburn Alumna. Hee hee, I love a good beating!! (the Canes also won 5-3 versus Atlanta!)

Friday, November 09, 2007

Yes, I did it/Shopping News

I did go to running class last night and I did complete the 5 mile run. It was very cold and I was tired. There were times when I was alone, running in the dark, and kind of scared, but I did it. I am glad it did, even if I complained to myself the whole time I was running. I thought about dropping out of the 8K race on Thanksgiving, but I feel better in the new day. I think I will run it anyway.

In other news, the Nordstrom Half-Yearly sale for Women and Children started Wednesday. I was disappointed with the selection (if was not nearly as good as Anniversary Sale), but I did manage to find a very cute pair of brown booties. I have been wearing my new boots all day. Thanks to my good buddy Melissa and my Nordstrom points certificate, I only paid $11.00 for them. It's Veteran's Day sales this weekend - hope I find more bargains!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Sleep Slidin' Away

For some reason, I could not sleep last night. I woke up at about 3:00 am for no reason. I didn't have anything on my mind, I wasn't stressed over anything, but I was awake. I would have turned on my light and read for a while, but that is rather rude to do when your husband is sleeping next to you. It was too cold for my lazy bones to get out of bed, so I just stared at the ceiling and tried to get back to sleep. I did eventually fall back asleep, but I don't feel like I got a restful sleep. I never had problems sleeping. I can usually count on my ability to shut down at the end of the evening.

Instead, I have had numerous people tell me I am grumpy today. Not only did I get little sleep, I also had a dentist appointment this morning. I had an old filling removed and replaced. I am feeling the pain now. In about 20 minutes, I am to leave here and go run 5 miles. It's 45 degrees outside. I wish I could just go home.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007


I think I have a problem. It seems that I cannot stick with one thing. I have tried many things in recent years (Tai Chi, interior decorating, feng shui, meditation, art class, writing), but nothing seems to stick. I go into the task thinking that it will be so interesting and fun. I do get enjoyment out of it for awhile, but then I quit. Is it because it is too hard? It is because I have ADD and get bored? Do I lack self confidence? I don't really know.

I have been running now since about March. When I was out Tuesday morning, I began to seriously question what I was doing. Is running becoming my latest passing fancy? I don't know. It could be that I was cold, then I was warm. Maybe I was just tired. All I know is that I did not really want to be running. I hope it does not continue. I don't want it to be the latest thing that I have tried, then given up. After all, I still have the Junior League to quit...

Monday, November 05, 2007

Mamma Mia! What a weekend...

So, this weekend was our fall back weekend. We gained an hour on Sunday, so why does it feel like this weekend was so short??

Bill and I had dinner with friends on Friday. I had attended a show with my office mate that evening that featured hand made glass. The artist blows the glass, then makes jewelry, decorative balls, or vases. I got a lovely pair of earrings that are silver with clear and frosted glass. After the show, we met up for dinner. It was nice to be able to do something with my colleague outside of work. She and her husband invited us to their home after dinner. It was nice to see her house after we have spent many hours talking about design and decorating.

On Saturday, Bill, Samantha, and I went to a charity dog walk. We did a 2 mile fun walk and raised money for The Animal Protection Society. It was a lovely weekend, so it was great to be outside. We even won this huge outdoor dog bed in a raffle. We think we are going to donate it back to the APS. Saturday evening, we went to see the play "Mamma Mia!". The musical is based on the songs of ABBA. I loved it!! I think "Dancing Queen" is one of my all time favorite songs. Bill said he would have preferred a musical based on the works of AC/DC. We went to The Sauce after the play for a few beers, so I think he was OK.

Sunday went by so quickly, I can't even tell you what we did. We did watch the movie "The Number 23". It was strange, but I liked it. Jim Carrey is kind of cool when he is not being an over the top clown.

The weekend went by too quickly. When is the next one?

Thursday, November 01, 2007

The List

Bill came up with this idea with a few drinking buddies of ours - compile a list of 50 things that you want to do before you die. The list can also include things that you have already accomplished that you always wanted to do and think that other people might enjoy. We would all submit the lists to him and he would remove the duplicates to get one list. We would then have things to talk about and events to plan with our friends.

Sounds cool, huh? It was, but it is much harder than you think. It is especially difficult if you are a person like me. Compared to our friends, I have no desire for the adrenaline rush as they do. I also have very little ambition. In the end, I came up with 34 items. Many of them are shopping (own a Birkin bag, buy a pair of designer high heels) or travel (visit Australia and New Zealand, go on a photo safari in Africa) related. I do have a few adrenaline rush items (fly on a trapeze), but not as many as I suspect our friends will list. It will be fun to see the complete list and see how much we have in common.

What would you put on your list?

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween 2007!!

Happy Halloween everybody!

Well, it is a tradition where I work that all employees dress up for Halloween. Those who do dress up are allowed to leave after a half day of work. So, really, it is a no-brainer as whether to or not to participate.

This year I went with what I know - I was a Caniac. I pretty much have everything I could possibly need after being a season ticket holder and fan for the past 7 years. Next year I can be a rabid Caniac, then a dead Caniac...I can ride this train for some time to come.

We had great costumes this year - a proctologist, a Twister game, Captain Jack Sparrow, a gang member, Luigi from Super Mario Brothers, and a guy who wore a blow up doll on his front and looked like a baby on her back. It sounds weird, but he won the best costume contest. Fun was had by all.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

As I pass into my 36th year on this planet...

Today marks the beginning of year 36 for me. This morning, during my run (yes, it was very cold outside), I started thinking about my past relationships - past loves, past regrets, past mistakes, past chances that failed, and past chances never taken. I had a few fond memories in the bunch, and more than I few memories that I wished to forget. I thought about the people who have affected my life, and wondered where a few of them are now and what they are doing. I remembered a few people that I wish I had never let in my life.

For better or worse, these people made me the person that I am today. At the ripe old age of 36, I find that I am happy. I have a wonderful husband, a sweet dog, good friends and family. I have a job that is decent and a home that is warm. I have love and I am loved. I think that is pretty much all we want as humans. The first 35 years have been good - I hope the next 35 continue to bring more of the same. Happy birthday to me!

Monday, October 29, 2007

A Happy Mistake

So, last night, Bill and I were going out for an early birthday celebration. He had asked me to make reservations at a restaurant called Vin Rouge. As we were getting ready to leave the house, he mentioned something about the restaurant. I told him that we were not going to either the restaurants we had discussed the previously week - he had asked me to make a reservation at a totally different restaurant. Boy, was that news to him!

As it turned out, it was a great mistake. We were a little nervous going to this French restaurant. We were afraid it would be pretentious. It was very good. The atmosphere was chic and modern - not in the least bit stuffy. The food was great (Bill had French Onion soup and trout almondine, I had a beet salad and steak au poivre with pommes frites) and the waiter didn't mind translating the menu for us. We had a lovely evening together and discovered a great new restaurant.

Sometimes mistakes are good.

Great Weekend for Sports

What a great weekend for sports!!

My Georgia Bulldogs' football team beat arch rival Florida on Saturday 42-30. That is (unfortunately) something that does not happen very often. It was an awesome game! Georgia is now ranker #10 in the AP Poll.

My Carolina Hurricane's beat the NY Islanders 8-3 Saturday with my favorite Cane recording a hat trick!!

My new favorite baseball team, The Boston Red Sox, beat the Colorado Rockies in 4 straight games to win The World Series (ever since the tour of Fenway Park this summer, I have been smitten).

It's good to be a winner!!!!

M & J's Engagement Photos

M & J took their engagement photos this weekend. I think the pictures are awesome! Their photographer was wonderful. These two look like they could be on the cover of a magazine. It makes me wish I had some pictures of us looking this good...

They get married 06-07-08.

The Fall TV Season

I am not a big TV watcher normally, but I have found some shows that I have been enjoying this season. Now, I am happily addicted to three new fall shows. My favs are Samantha Who?, Dirty Sexy Money, and my guilty favorite, Gossip Girl. I am so addicted to Gossip Girl right now (yes, I realize that I am no longer a 16 year old girl - that's why it is a guilty pleasure) that I have been watching the episodes I tape over and over. I am just a romantic at heart and I love Serena and Dan as a couple.

I have also continued watching old favorites - Bones, Scrubs, and America's Next Top Model (I like Jenah or Heather to win it all!).

Do you have any favorite TV shows I should check out?

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

CA Update

I am happy to say that my friend in California is OK. She was evacuated from her home on Sunday, but has been staying with her parents. Her office is closed as well. None of the structures in her area have burned, but there is a lot of smoke and the air quality is very poor. She hopes to be able to visit her home today, but will probably stay with her parents through the weekend. I am so glad she is safe!!

California Burning

I have been watching the coverage of the fires in California. I grew up in Southern California - I lived there from second grade to my sophomore year in high school. I really didn't think that the area where I grew up (and where I still have friends) was in danger, but I just checked out the interactive map on MSN, and the fire was closer than I thought. There was no mention of my specific town, luckily. I sent off a note to my girlfriend who is still there to see if she is OK. I hope to hear back from her soon. I have been getting e-mails from my friend who now lives in Long Beach. She is OK.

One side of the country is in a miserable drought, the other side is on fire.

I can't imagine what it would be like to lose everything you owned whether it be from a fire, a flood, a hurricane, or a tornado. Your house was there one minute, and gone a few minutes later. Bill and I have made a donation to the American Red Cross. If you would like to help, click here.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Back to the Canes

My friend, Heather, and I went to the Canes game last night. It was a different experience to go with a person who was actually interested in the game. We had a good time.

We sat in the seats where we will have tickets all season. We are definitely in a hard core area. These folks were all dressed in their Canes gear with their radios on to listen to the commentary while watching the live game. I had better not make a false comment during the season - these guys may give me a run for my money.

I was glad to be able to enjoy a Canes victory. They beat the Canucks 3-1. Once again, they played one brilliant period, then made me question the rest. They came out swinging last night with 16 shots in the 1st (out of 31 for the total game). To his credit, the Canuck's goalie, Luongo, stood tall and rejected everything the Canes sent his way. His luck ran out in the 2nd period when Carolina finally scored on the power play.

When we went into the third period, I was nervous that the Canes would lose their lead as they had in the previous game. Luckily, my favorite Cane sent a gorgeous pass to the wide open Chad LaRose who was able to convert to the high side. It was an absolute beauty to see. While goalie Cam Ward played a great game, one finally slid by him with just under 7 minutes to spare. Again, my Cane came to the rescue in the final moments by stripping the puck from a poor slow Canuck and send it over to Ray " the Wizard" Whitley for the empty netter. A happy ending to a good game (there were even 3 major fights!).

I saw a great hockey game. My hubby went to car club and drank beer with Terry (Terry's wife was with me at the game - go figure, you would think it would have been the other way around). All was well in Raleigh last night.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The Worst Part

The worst part of a vacation (for me at least) is the travelling. Our recent trip to Antigua was no exception.

On the trip down, we had to get up early in the morning to get to the airport for our 7:20 am departure time. We flew to Miami where we were supposed to have a 3 hour layover. The three hours turned to 4 when our flight crew was delayed by an international flight. We arrived in Puerto Rico with only a half hour to spare for our connection to Antigua. While that seems like a lot of time, the gate agents were calling for final boarding while we were trying to run through the terminal. But, alas, that flight was also delayed by a driving thunderstorm that closed the ramp. We finally left about a half hour late, and arrived in Antigua in the dark. Unfortunately, our bags were still in San Juan. They did not have time to make the connection. There were about 5 couples who were in the same situation. By the time we arrived at the resort and got checked in, it was about 8:30 pm. We were starved as our last meal was breakfast in Miami, so we hightailed it to the closest restaurant we could find (we had a delicious Caribbean meal and several drinks). Happily, our luggage did arrive at the resort at about 1:15 am the next morning.

So, was the return trip better? No, the return trip made the outbound trip look like a piece of cake. Our phone rang at 5:30 am to wake us for our last day in Antigua. We had a quick breakfast and were shuttled to the airport for the second flight of the day. We wound up arriving so early, that the agents moved us to the first flight. That turned out to be fine because we were able to travel with a celebrity. Actress/model Amber Valletta was on our flight. You may remember her from her role as Allegra in the movie Hitch. She had been in Antigua for a photo shoot. I am pleased to say she is just as lovely in person as she is on the big screen. We lost track of her in San Juan where we had a 3 hours layover before flying to JFK. We arrived in JFK at about 5 pm, ready for our 5 hours layover before our next flight. Luckily, there was a great bar/restaurant where we were able to hang, and it was next to a sterling silver store where I purchased 2 rings. Finally, at about 10 pm, we boarded the final leg of our trip. We were so excited to be on our way home until the pilot announced that we had about an hour wait to get to the runway. We fell into our beds at home at about 1:30 am. Yes, we both had to go to work the next day.

The best part of the return? I caught someone's cold on the flight to JFK. I was so sick, I was unable to go to work on Tuesday. I am feeling much better now, but still have a bit of congestion. The travel was definitely hellish, but I think the trip was still worth it.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Back from Antigua!

Bill and I spent a wonderful week in Antigua at the Sandals Resort. It was absolutely wonderful! It was simply one of the most relaxing vacations I have ever taken. Usually, we go on vacation and go, go, go! We sight see, shop, go on tours, see shows, etc. Not with this vacation. There was nothing to see other than the clear blue water, no place to go other than the bar. The weather was wonderful (if not a bit hot). We would sit out on the beach (under a shade) after our breakfast. We might go to lunch, or simply sip on a pina colada. We would head to the main pool in the afternoon to float around with more drinks from the swim up bar. We would go to the hot tub as the sun began to set. When dark arrived, we would head to our room to relax and watch TV until we felt like showering. We would then head to dinner at any of the 9 restaurants and listen to some live music afterward. It was everything a vacation should be. Not that we were bums the whole time - we did do some activity.

We did a day excursion around the island where we toured by SUV, then went ocean kayaking. We went out to a small island called Bird Island for lunch and snorkeling. Sandals also offered many different water sports. Bill tried wind surfing. We went snorkeling on another day to a reef that is beginning to come back to life after a hurricane. We also sailed on a Hobie cat catamaran. It turned out to be the most fun thing we did and we didn't try it until the last day!

The resort was all inclusive, so there was plenty of eating and drinking. We loved that you could just walk up to a bar, request a drink, and walk away. No check, no room key, no signature required. It was the same with the restaurants. You walked in, ate what you wanted, and left when you were ready - no waiting for the wait staff to bring the bill. If that wasn't enough, there was a bar in our room with a little refrigerator. It was restocked everyday with beer, soda, mixers, water, and fruit juice. Above the bar on a shelf were 5 bottles - vodka, gin, whisky, rum, and a red wine. Yours for the taking! (there was also white wine and champagne in the frig!)

I have to say, we really enjoyed ourselves. The staff was friendly and helpful, the grounds were beautiful, and the food and drink was quite tasty. I would recommend a trip to Sandals. As a matter of fact, we are thinking of going to their St. Lucia property soon!!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Canes 10th Season Opening Night

Well, opening night didn't exactly go the way I had hoped. After the banner raising to celebrate the franchise's 10th year, there was a montage of great moments in their history. Absolutely no mention of last season, mind you. Of course, it was highly focused on the 2001-02 season when they won the Eastern Conference, and 2005-06 when they won The Stanley Cup. It's getting to be a little like Bush or Guiliani mentioning 9/11 in every political speech. Yes, we won The Cup. Yes, it was wonderful. But, it was over a year ago - let's focus on the now!

So, the Canes looked pretty good in the first period. They scored first on an Eric Cole deflection of an Eric Stahl shot, much to the delight on the pumped up crowd. Man, they had so many opportunities! I can't even count how many close calls there were in front of Montreal's net. The angels were definitely with the Habs last night. Montreal came back to tie it before the end of the first.

The second period was very slow - not much action to speak. The Canes had multiple 5 on 3 chances, but never did convert.

The Habs came out in the third and took the lead on a Koivu goal. The crowd booed. I hate negative crowd reactions. Cheer for your team, don't boo anyone!! Especially a guy who fought back from brain cancer and returned to the NHL. Luckily, the Canes got back on the ball in the last half of the third. They really did a good job forcing the net. Hedican had a beauty of a goal to tie the game once again. Overtime was looming.

I am not one for overtime. I like to finish the game in regulation. I never have a good feeling with OT. As soon as our player, Nick Wallin, took the cross charge penalty in OT, I knew it was over. Sure enough, the Habs scored within a few seconds. They crowd poured out, as defeated as the Canes.

Ward looked good in goal, and there were some sparks during the game. The Canes need to continue to work on the power play (old problem). I hope that this game is not indicative of things to come. We don't need another long season to nowhere.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Bill is Drivin' Fast!

Bill had fun in Charlotte over the weekend driving race car at The Richard Petty Driving Experience. After instruction, he was able to drive a race car around Lowe's Motor Speedway for 8 laps following an instructor. The cars on this track top out at the low 140 mph - Bill got his #55 car to just over 139 mph. He was quite pleased. I think it was a great experience for us both. I had never been to the speedway - it is huge!! We were in the center of the track, and the cars left from pit road. It was a vantage that few people get to enjoy. Bill says that next time I need to do the ride along program where I can ride passenger with a professional driver. Those cars get to about 160 mph. We now have a list of all the different locations for the experience - we may have to road trip to another race track. I am so glad he enjoyed his birthday present!

Love this picture!

The actual caption: Sometimes when you are angry with someone, it helps to sit down and think about the problem.

My husband writes: that's AWESOME. A great use for a cat- a dog's butt pillow!

Monday, October 01, 2007

The Queen City

Bill and I had a great time in the Queen City, Charlotte, this past weekend. It was part of Bill's birthday gift to go to The Richard Petty Driving School and spend a long weekend in Charlotte. Yes, Bill did go fast (more on that later).

We were totally taken aback by how beautiful and big Charlotte is. We drove down the streets and admired the gorgeous older homes on huge amounts of land. Goodness only knows how much those homes cost, but it was nice to look at all the great houses on the tree covered streets. There are some very ritzy areas of Charlotte, but also a nice mix of other, more relaxed neighborhoods. We were in an area that used to be textile mills that has now been renovated for shops, condos, and offices. It was another lovely area with a real homey feel.

Downtown was wonderful, too! The place was hopping on Saturday night with traffic at the many bars and restaurants. We were able to eat outside at a lovely Italian place called Luce in one of the tallest buildings, The Hearst Tower. We ate our brunch on the sidewalk outside of Harry and Jean's Passionate American Food (it was out of this world!) and watched all the folks walking around in their Buccaneers or Panthers jerseys.

All in all, we had a great weekend. We even got to visit the Charlotte Flying Saucer (twice) for a few beers. Great area, good shopping (of course we did some of that, too), wonderful food, tasty beer and high speed - what more could you ask for in a weekend!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Is It Me?

Do you ever have something happen where you just have to shake your head and wonder if crazy thing only happen to you?

I had the weirdest thing happen yesterday morning. Tuesdays are recycling pick-up days in our neighborhood. We happen to have 2 recycling bins - one that came with the house and one that we got when Bill's old office closed. We never put out 2 bins though. We can usually fits all our stuff in one bin. Well, I put out both bins Monday night. Bill asked me if we were supposed to have two bins, but since they were both full, I put them out.

So, the morning rolls around and the truck comes by to pick up the recycling. I was going to go out and get the empty bins, but the truck was still there. I waited a few minutes, but they never left. I decided to just go ahead and get ready for work. After my shower, I heard noises outside. The truck was still there!! At this point, I was beginning to wonder if the collectors called the recycling police. "House with two recycling bins - get the police here fast!"

I decided just to wait it out - I didn't have to leave for work yet anyway. As I waited, I began to fear far worse things. What if a serial killer was prowling the neighborhood last night and decided to drop body parts in our bin? What if the collectors were supposed to stay and watch the house until the police arrived? OK, I was reaching. I figured that if body parts were found in a recycling bin, it would take less than 40 minutes for the police to arrive. So, I had to go ask what was going on.

It turns out that the truck had broken down. Yes, it was stalled at the end of my driveway! I am pretty darn sure that I was the only person on the street still at home who needed to go to work. Why did it have to break down so that it blocked my driveway? I had to call work to let them know I would be late. I was having a hard time believing my excuse for being late even as I saw the truck blocking my driveway. It sounds so far fetched! That's when I began to shake my head and wonder if these things only happen to me.

Watch out UGA!!!

Our buddy, Mike, was indicted yesterday for his part in the dogfighting ring. I hear today that he also failed his drug test - traced of marijuana were found in his sample. Dogs everywhere will be safe soon!!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A Handful of People

In every group I have been a member of, it seems that there are only a handful of people who actually do the work. This fact was abundantly clear last night at our car club meeting.

For months, we have been looking for a volunteer to be the car show director. Jeff had done the job for 4 years, and it was someone else's turn. The committees are already set (including Bill and I heading up registration), but we just need that one person to steer the ship, so to speak. The director would just be the leader, the project manager. The rest of us have experience with our particular duties. Jeff is even willing to help guide the new director. He has 4 years worth of notes ready to pass. By our new count last night, there are 87 members in our club. How many people do you think stood up and accepted the challenge? The same number that did last month - 0. Not one person. It was coming down to the question of whether or not we would even have a car show at all this year.

Miraculously, we received news today that someone did step up and heed our call. Jeff will direct for the 5th time. Wouldn't it have been shocking if someone else really did take the role?

Monday, September 24, 2007

Bill Says...

My hubby reads my blog each weekend. He says that he needs to read it so that he knows what is going on in my head. I'm just glad he enjoys it.

He recently told me 2 things that I need to mention, so here goes...

1. It was a joint effort, but we are glad to say that we brought down the man. Yes, our mortgage company dropped the forced placed flood insurance on our home and credited us 100% of the cost. It took many phone calls and letters, but we won (and rightly so!) If it had not been for both of our efforts, we would not have been successful. I think we need to remember that for future problems.

2. Thursdays are my normal long runs with my class. This past Thursday, we received a much needed rain shower that started at about 5:30 pm. There was no thunder or lightning. Much to my surprise and Bill's, I went to class. Yes, I actually ran my 4 miles in the rain!! It wasn't so bad. It certainly helps with the sweat issue. Bill said that I should mention my dedication on this blog. Of course, I did not run on Sunday, but why let that ruin my earlier in the week dedication...

Friday, September 21, 2007

Hockey Fun!

I was reading in the paper this morning about the Canes latest goalie. It turns out that the new guy is familiar with our #1 goalie, Cam Ward. They fought each other in 2004 when they were both in the minors. They were the two opposing goalies in a game which saw a bench clearing brawl. At least they can laugh about it now.

This is one of the many reasons that I love hockey. So people who don't understand the sport think that the fighting is barbarian. It isn't. Fighting is just a way to fire up the team, to get your teammates back into the game. I will never forget my 2 favorite hockey fights:

1. The 2000 playoffs - Carolina was not doing well in the opening round against New Jersey (they were getting their butts kicked). Since there was no hope of them winning game 3 of the series, they just decided to duke it out. Everyone got into it, and there were fights all night long. At one point, the then goalie, Arturs Irbe, just left the crease, went to center ice, and jumped a guy. They lost game 3, but came back to win game 4. Unfortunately, they lost the following game and were eliminated from the playoffs.

2. The Raleigh Ice Caps - this game was many years ago, when the only hockey in town was the minor league team that played at the fairgrounds. I went to several games, but one really stands out in my mind. When all was said and done, there were about 7 players ejected from the game (very rare) and there were 103 minutes of penalties. The Caps did win in the end, by some ridiculously large score. I think it was one of the best games I have seen.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

More Sex!

I just read on Ivillage that the Sex and the City Movie is starting to film today. It will open on May 30 of next year. I have to agree with their reporter - I will be there on opening day! I own all six seasons on DVD, and I would not miss this reunion for the world. Don't Mr. Big and Carrie look great? I am counting down the days already...


I get so frustrated sometimes. It makes me mad when other people cannot seem to do what they are supposed to do. If the deadline for articles is the first of the month, do not send something new on the 15th and expect me to add it!! If you have a Corporate American Express Card, do not submit an expense report for things you charge on it!! If you are Britney Spears and your custody judge orders random drug and alcohol tests for you, do not go celebrate that fact in a bar/club until it closes!! Seriously people - use your brains every once in awhile!! I am tired of being frustrated on your behalf.

Monday, September 17, 2007


I forgot to mention that we contacted the wildlife rehabilitation people last week about the squirrel Bill found on our porch. The little guy is doing very well. His eyes are open, he is eating, and he will be moved to the next level of caging. It was so good to hear! By the way, he does have a name. He has been named Sammy II after our doggie.

So Bored!

Do you ever get so bored that you don't want to do anything at all?

That is how I feel today. I am bored. It was hard for me to even decide to write this blog entry. I do like blogging, but I couldn't think of anything to say. So, I decided to write about being bored. It is a horrible feeling. You know you can do something, but you are already so bored, you just feel like doing nothing. Yet, if you do something, you won't be bored anymore. It's a bad place to be. I feel it more often than I wish I did.

At least we had a good weekend. The weather was just gorgeous this weekend. It was sunny and about 78 degrees yesterday. We had to push all plans aside so we could spend the day outside. After striking out at the fairgrounds (it was already packed), we went to The Sauce. We had a few beers and ate our lunch outside. Even Sammy enjoyed it. She had a good time seeing (as Bill said) the place where her parents spend so much time!

We got to spend time with our friends as well. We went out Saturday night with T&H and a whole big group of their friends. It was T's birthday yesterday, so it was great to celebrate with him. Yesterday, M&J called out of the blue. We headed over to their place Sunday night for a pizza dinner. It was quite tasty. We have such good friends. I was glad to spend time with them.

The final ingredient to make the weekend great - Bill and I each got to do our own fun thing. Bill went to a classic car cruise-in, and I went shopping!! Why can't all days be weekends?

The Dawgs won, too!!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Did you miss me?

I can't believe that it has been 9 days since my last post! My aunt sent me an e-mail to make sure I was OK. I am fine, just busy. I have been absolutely slammed at work and busy in the evenings as well. I just could not find 2 minutes to write an entry until now. Here is what is going on:

Running: I have been slacking lately. I have been running during the week, but not so much on the weekends. I have been sleeping in instead. Well, except for last Sunday. I did run in the Friesen 5K Sunday morning. Pete Friesen is the strength coach for the Carolina Hurricanes. He puts on this event for charity. Several Canes players were there, but only 2 ran (Whitney/Brind'Amour). They both finished in about 20 minutes - I finished in about 40. I was dying, but I did run the whole thing. I ran 4 miles yesterday morning, and had an epiphany. My new slogan "Appreciate the Downhills."

Work: We moved 9/6. All went really well, and we are settling in our new building. It is like trading up from a used car 10 years past its prime to a new Lexus. It's not a Mercedes, but definitely better than what we had. My office mate and I have had a great time decorating our office. Our theme is red. Good thing, too, since my teams are all red and black!! Yes, Georgia and the Hurricanes dominate my side of the room.

Hubby: My baby turned 40 on Monday. We went to his folks house Sunday for a birthday dinner. He went to work late Monday morning so we could walk our dog in the morning, then have breakfast together. I made him French Toast. We went to a nice Italian restaurant for dinner. We had a nice time. I think he liked all of his presents, and there is still more to come. We go to Charlotte in 2 weeks for his Richard Petty Driving Experience.

The Junior League: I think I know what happened to the left over Stepford Wives - they all joined the Junior League. The League is like having a part-time job with no pay or benefits. Yet, I go to these JL functions, and everyone is always smiling and so happy to be there! I spent 2 1/2 hours Tuesday night working on the October newsletter, then had to go to a meeting Wednesday night for the new members. I was not smiling.

The Dawgs: Lost to SC and Spurrier last Saturday. They looked horrible. It was a complete turn around from the previous week. I hope this week is better.

The Dog: Sammy is great - furry as usual. She hasn't torn anything up recently.

Well, that's all I have for now. It is 5:30 pm, the end of a long week. I am heading home for a night of sitting in front of the TV watching a movie (The French Connection) and drinking beer (which I have not been able to do with my busy schedule. Bill has been to The Sauce twice without me!). Happy Weekend!!!!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Pisani in Pain

Courtesy of Fox Sports on MSN:

EDMONTON (AP) - Forward Fernando Pisani will be out of the Edmonton Oilers' lineup indefinitely after being diagnosed with ulcerative colitis.
Ulcerative colitis is a type of inflammatory bowel disorder.
"We are very concerned about Fernando's medical condition and we wish him nothing but a full and healthy recovery," general manager Kevin Lowe in a statement Tuesday.
Pisani had 14 goals and 14 assists in 77 games with Edmonton last season. After scoring 14 goals in the 2006 playoffs, Pisani was rewarded with a four-year, $10 million contract in the offseason.
"I appreciate all the wonderful words of encouragement I have received, including messages from my teammates," said the 30-year-old Pisani, who is currently undergoing treatment. "I look forward to returning to the

Isn't this the dude who scored the winning goal in Game 5 of the 2006 Stanley Cup Finals in overtime while the Canes had a power play? I spent several hundreds of dollars to see that game from a standing room only viewpoint. I think this is the guys who ruined my party. Help me out, Canes Fans, am I right?

Still, I don't wish anyone bowel troubles. I hope he has a speedy recovery.

Fun with Ford

I drive a Ford car, and I have been having trouble with it. I took it to the dealership in late July and told them of a problem I have been having. They checked out the car, but could not find anything wrong. They said that I needed to have a data recorder installed on my car so that when the problem happens again, I can record what is going on with the engine. It seemed like a good idea to me. Well, apparently, they only have 1 data recorder and someone else was using it. So, I waited. I waited some more. Every time I called, it was still on someone else's car. After a month, I finally asked to speak to some one higher up than the technician who had been helping me.

Alas, I received the same information from the customer service manager. I would just have to wait. Well, I was tired of waiting. So, I wrote a little note to Ford Motor Company to complain about my service. Lo and behold, when you state that you are afraid to drive your Ford car, someone really does listen. I received a call today from a customer care representative at Ford and the dealership has found a data recorder. I can go in tomorrow to have it installed on my car. I guess going to the higher power really did work.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Found on porch

This morning, Bill found something strange on our front porch. He called me to look at it, and we figured it was a baby squirrel. It seemed that it has been abandoned or lost. We had no idea what to do with it, so Bill moved it into the shade. It was still bothering us. We couldn't get the little guy out of our minds. Bill looked up "How to care for a baby squirrel" on the Internet (isn't the net great?) and it gave us some ideas. We were getting ready to go to the store for infant formula when Bill happened upon a wildlife recovery website. He called a local person who advised us not to feed the animal, but to place it in a shoebox in a cool area. Bill just got another call and he is rushing the baby to the experts so he can be properly rehabilitated. Bill is such a good person - he just wants the baby to be OK. He feels good now, and I feel good that I married him.

PS - In other animal news, my Dawgs beat OSU last night 35-14. Go DAWGS!!

Saturday, September 01, 2007

My favorite time of year

Today marks the beginning of the best time of the year, at least to me. My favorite time of year is September 1 to January 1. I absolutely love the fall for so many different reasons:

1. Cooler weather
2. The beauty of the leaves changing
3. College Football
4. Hockey season
5. Fall clothes
6. Fall handbags
7. Fall shoes (do you see the trend here?)
8. Hubby's birthday
9. My Birthday
10. Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas

There is nothing that I do not like about the fall. Everything just seems better today. The weather is already cooler today than it was yesterday. I am going to go watch my beloved Bulldogs play their first game of the year tonight on TV. Soon, I will be able to wear those beautiful wide legged gray and black light wool trousers with my gray suede lace up booties. What's not to love?

Friday, August 31, 2007


1. Today is the 10th anniversary of Princess Diana's death. Hard to believe it has been 10 years already. I remember the day she died. I was shocked to hear she had died. I knew she had been in a car accident, but that she was actually dead was so unbelievable. I went to London about a month after her death. People were still leaving flowers at Kensington Palace. She was such an amazing woman, but I don't really know what made her so. I guess just surviving being a member of the royal family. I remember waking at about 3:00 am California time to watch her marry Prince Charles. My mom and I watched the whole thing live on TV. It was like watching a fairy tale come true, then years later, seeing that fairy tales are fiction.

2. Leona Helmsley left $12 million dollars to her dog. I'm not saying that the pooch doesn't deserved to be taken care of for the rest of its life. I'm just saying that I would have happily been her companion (heck, I would have licked her face) for $12 million.

3. I just heard Britney Spears' comeback single on Perez Hilton. It is definitely club music. Not bad, but very heavy techno. It makes me wonder what her voice really sounds like. I probably don't want to know. My favorite comment was "No amount of synthesizers can hide the crazy." Priceless.

4. It is almost Labor Day weekend. We have no plans, and that it fine by me. I have 3 movies from Netflix and beer in the fridge. I really need to clean the house, so I hope to at least get that done. We will probably watch the Dawgs play tomorrow, too. Go DAWGS!!

5. Ten wrestlers have been suspended from the WWE due to possible steriod use. I am shocked and appalled - only 10?

6. Last night, I found out that, if an effort to scare away the cat next door, my dog has ripped a hole in the mattress in our guest room. She has jumped and clawed the corner so badly that the edge has ripped open and foam is coming out. I wanted to kill her. Bright side - I guess I get to re do the guest room. Can you say new mattress and bedspread? Maybe they will match the new curtains I need to get for the dining room. It's lucky I love that dog so much.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Movin' Out

I am convinced that there is nothing worse than moving. Our office is getting ready to move to a new location in 1 week. The place is a total disaster. Folks are packing up, sorting through their stuff, and re-organizing. I have unpacked and re-packed several file boxes, and have spent about 3 hours standing in front of the shredder. I know that we will be in a much better place in a week, but the getting there just stinks.

I am flashing back to last summer when I helped my dad move. It was just horrible. We procrastinated, then at the last minute, had to make the tough decisions about what stays and what gos. The worst part for me was that his house was the storage place for all of my childhood things. We all knew he was going to move for at least six months, but we could never bring ourselves to get ready. So, when I did go through things, I had my step mother there saying things like "What do you really need that for?" I got so tired of her asking questions and giving me that look, that I just started throwing away everything. Later, I went with tears in my eyes to the local Goodwill to see if I could find the nightlight that used to shine in my bedroom when I was a kid. My dad asked me about it before he put it in the box - he was so surprised I would let it go. I was so tired of dealing with stuff - I told him to just take it away. Even more than one year later, I still think about that light and it makes me cry. I really hate moving.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

My honey's ankle

My honey went to the orthopaedist this morning to have someone look at his ankle. I'm so glad he got an appointment. It has been 9 days since he tripped in that hole while running. His ankle has been bothering him this whole time. We were going to exercise Saturday morning - I was going to run while Bill biked. He made it about 100 yards out of our driveway when he turned around. I think it was then when the downward pressure of pedaling was painful that he knew he needed to see someone.

The good news is that there are no broken bones or anything else too serious. He has a brace to wear and exercises to do at home. He can still work out, but no running for 6 weeks. He is so bummed. I think I would be, too. I can't imagine not running for six whole weeks. At least it is not a major injury. He will run again. Sadly, he will miss our 5K in 2 weeks. Anyone want to run with me?

Monday, August 27, 2007

One of the Best Weekends Ever!!

Hubby and I went to Fearrington Village this weekend to celebrate our 5th wedding anniversary. It was probably one of the best weekends we have ever had.

Fearrington Village is a 5 star Bed and Breakfast Inn with a world class restaurant. We drove down Saturday (it is under an hour from home) and shopped in the little village stores. We were able to get to our room at about 3. We had one of the best suites in the place (if you visit their website, it is the fuchsia suite that is featured on the homepage). It was probably the nicest place I have ever stayed. We enjoyed an English tea Saturday afternoon at the restaurant, which was the original farm house from 1927. I had an in-room massage, and Bill went to one of the two available pools for a swim. We went to dinner at about 8:00 pm, and again were treated to wonderful service and amazing food. My dessert was called Chocolate, Chocolate, Chocolate. There were small portions of 6 different chocolate treats in my plate - a deep, dark chocolate cake, an orange chocolate meringue in a shell, white chocolate ice cream on a shortbread cookie, triple chocolate mousse cake, hot lava chocolate cake, and fried chocolate. Needless to say, when they brought us truffles as a special anniversary gift, we requested a to go box!! When we arrived back to our room, the bed had been turned down and port and more truffles were left for us. We slept very well!!

In the morning, we went to breakfast, and Bill had some of the best pancakes I had ever tasted while I had smoked salmon and hash browns which was also wonderful. We walked around the property to see the special belted cows and goats (they are black with white "belts" around the middle just like an Oreo). Not to worry, the cows are for decoration only, not to sources of Bill's beef tenderloin! We went for a swim, and didn't leave until noon when we were forced to check out. The front desk even gave us a goodie bag with a copy of the book featuring the Fearrington as a World's Best and a stuffed belted cow. The place was absolutely top notch, the best of the best. If you have any special occasion to be in this area, definitely check out Fearrington Village.

Bill did such a wonderful job for our anniversary - I really have to step it up for his b-day next month!! What a wonderful husband I have!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Fathers and Daughters and Politics

I guess there are things that fathers like to believe about their daughters, and mine is no different. Fathers like to believe that their daughters are virgins until they get married (not quite), never done drugs (that's true), and follow in their political footsteps (no way).

Somehow, my father always seems shocked to find out that I am a registered Democrat. I guess I grew up in a household of the GOP, but much like religion, we never really discussed it. I'm not surprised by my own democratic leanings - I have pretty much sided with them since college. It should be of no surprise that I am starting to get very interested in the 2008 elections.

I have no idea who our Democratic candidate will be. Will Hillary make history for all women? Will Barack become the first African American nominee? Will John continue to have great hair? At this point, I don't know. Recent years seem to indicated that the candidate leading at this point in the race (Hillary) is usually not the person to win the nomination. Candidates are one screaming "Yeah!" from losing all momentum. Whoever it will be, I'm sure I will be voting Democrat in November '08. With the mess left behind by Bush, Dad may even vote with me.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Marbury: 'Dogfighting is a sport'

Needless to say, when I saw this headline from the AP in my sports section this morning, I was pretty miffed. How could anyone claim dogfighting is a sport?

Stephon Marbury of the New York Knicks defended Michael Vick in his dogfighting case. Of course, if you read the article, the quote was taken just a little bit out of context. Marbury actually said, "You know, from what I hear, dogfighting is a sport." Still, who the heck is Marbury talking to? Members of the Coalition for Dog Massacre? Sport Watchers for Canine Blood?

I'm sorry, but watching two dogs fight to the death is not a sport. It is mean, sadistic, and cruel. There is no way around it. Training animals to go after one another and teaching them to be aggressive is wrong. It is sick and perverted. It has absolutely nothing to do with sportsmanship. I, for one, hope that Mr. Vick has many years in prison to think about what he has done. And if he has to fight to the death with a fellow inmate named Chainsaw in the prison yard, that's fine by me. After all, it's just a sport.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Funny Pages

I was reading the comics this morning and came across a funny strip. It was called Cave Man Blog. It had 2 cavemen speaking to one another and said something like "At first I wrote about my inventions, then my thoughts, now I write about what I had for dinner." So true!

So, with that in mind...

Last night for dinner I made a quick taco soup recipe that I got from Michelle H.'s blog (see link for Shooting the Breeze on the right). It was absolutely delicious and so easy! It is really more like a chili than a soup, and definitely tastes better on day 2 (as I had it for lunch today). We had is with a little bit of cheddar cheese, some fat free sour cream, and tortilla chips crumbled on top. So yummy and low in WW points, too!! It was perfect to have during our thunderstorm. We had this freak thunderstorm last night that gave us gentle rain here, but did some pretty big damage East of us. My colleague read to me comments from people who were at the Def Leppard show last night. It had to be canceled due to the storm. The wind did a lot of damage to the amphitheater. I hope that all will be well in September when we go to see Breaking Benjamin.

Anyway, check out the tasty recipe. It's worth the click!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

A New Look

As we near the fall season, I thought I would try out a new look for my blog. I was getting a little tired of those dots. I mean, they are nice, but really not me. I am more of an Earth tone type person. I like browns, reds, oranges, purples, and creams. I guess I am just a warm colors person. It comes out in my wardrobe and my home.

*********Being a girl with the definite ability to change her mind quickly, I totally revised the blog again on 8/23/07. I decided to go with a red and black theme since red is my favorite color and they are the colors of two of my favorite teams - The Craolina Hurricanes and the Georgia Bulldogs. I have also figured out how to post pictures, add links, and design a poll. I have had the best time customizing my blog. Thanks for reading with me!*********

So, tell me - what do you think of my new look?

Monday, August 20, 2007

I'm OK/He's Not So Good

I received correspondence re my mammogram on the 10th. It turns out all is well - no signs of anything suspicious. I wasn't expecting anything to be wrong, but it is always nice to have that letter to confirm. It certainly made me breathe a sigh of relief.

Poor Bill is injured. We went for our runs yesterday morning. I was running along and saw him walking toward me. I figured his legs were sore, but it was worse than that. He had stepped in a hole while jogging on the grass and hurt his left ankle. He hobbled home and put some ice on it. We went ahead to visit his parents for the day, but it was still bothering him. He iced and elevated it again when we got home. He says it feels better today, but it really hurt going down the stairs at work. I hope he did not do any serious injury to himself. He is bummed, but really glad it did not happen before or during the triathlon. He is going to stay off it as much as possible, so we will see what happens in a few days. I'll keep you posted!

Some like it hot, I don't

OK, I'm ready for this whole summer thing to be over already. I am so tired of this near 100 degree heat. It is so horrible to go out for a run at 6:00 am, and to already feel like you are in a sauna. It makes getting through the rest of the day that much more miserable. I have now started to take showers at the coldest setting possible. Yes, I actually have been enjoying ice cold showers this summer - I find them to be quite refreshing of late.

This past Saturday, Bill and I went to a drive-in for classic cars at a place called Grill 57. We had not been to one in about a year, so it seemed like it would be a fun thing to do. Well, it would have been fun if the temperature was less than 90 degrees. Our Camaro does not have air conditioning and the grill is about a 40 minute drive from our place. When we got there, I was already too hot to walk around and admire the great cars. I was so hot that I had to seek shelter in the only place nearby - Wal-Mart. Yes, I was in a Wal-Mart. I had forgotten hope depressing Wal-Mart is. At least it was cool. After cooling, I was able to go back and admire the great cars, and it did turn out to be a fun trip. Bill and I both know now that we need to take 2 cars to these things. Our 67 Camaro and one with air.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

No More Fight!

I was thinking the other day about one of the best things about being married is having a partner.

We have been having an ongoing problem with our mortgage company regarding our need for flood insurance. Our home is in a flood plain (we knew that) which was recently reclassified to require flood insurance. After a nasty note from our mortgage company, we started shopping around for the extremely expensive insurance. I found a good rate through the company that does our auto policy. Knowing that it would be a huge amount of money, I called the mortgage company to see exactly when the policy needed to be in place. I was told 45 days from the last correspondence, plus an additional 45 days after that period. Well, we were on our way to Boston for vacation, so I decided to hold off the purchase until we came home. I even left a note on my calendar to call the insurance company. A day before I was to make the call, the mortgage company sent a note saying that since we had not procured the flood insurance, we were automatically having the insurance added to our mortgage at their rate - about 3 times the rate I had. Well, I called to buy my insurance, then found out that they could no longer waive the 30 day waiting period since I now had "forced placed" insurance. Anyway, Bill and I were both furious and decided to fight the mortgage company.

Let me tell you, it is a pain in the you-know-where to try to fight those people. First, you get the automated answering service, then you get a person who does not want to help you and tries to send you to someone else. You get the wrong fax number to send your complaint letter, then no one follows up with you. I had decided I would never win, so I gave up. Luckily, I have a wonderful husband who is more than willing to fight injustice. He took up the fight this week, and I really think something might get accomplished. I am glad he is my partner because I have no more fight in me.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Visiting the Big Boss

On Saturday, Bill, Jon, and I visited Big Boss Brewery for their free brewery tour. Well, yes, there was a tour, but the real reason for visiting was the two free beers we were able to consume! Big Boss likes to make big beers with higher alcohol content. I tried a Hell's Belle Belgium White. Let me say, by the end of the tour, the buzz was definitely going strong!! Not a bad way to spend a Saturday afternoon!!

Photo of Bill and Susan taken by Jon Odgers

Monday, August 13, 2007

Bill's First Tri

I am so proud of my husband!!

Yesterday, Bill participated in his first ever triathlon - The UNC Wellness Super Sprint. He swam 250 yards, then biked 14K, and followed it up with a 5K run. He did a great job coming in 173 out of 236 - swim: 6:10, bike: 34:23, run: 28:21, overall: 1:12:49. I was lucky to be able to get there in time to see him before his swim, and cheer for him during the bike and run. I also got a few good pics. Bill trained hard for this event, and did so well. I know it won't be the last time I am cheering him on at a triathlon. Great job, baby!!

Friday, August 10, 2007

It's a Baseline

So, I haven't had much to say in the past 8 days - sue me! (not really, please, I spent all of my money at Nordstrom). I have a topic now.

I had My First Ever Mammogram this morning (I'm not kidding - that's what they called it in my confirmation letter. Not exactly like My First Baby Doll!) It is definitely an experience. My girlfriend at work sent me a comic strip about a week ago showing a woman whose boobs were shaped like boxes with the caption "She just got a Mammogram." I didn't get it then, but I get it now!! There is nothing quite like standing topless in front of a big X-Ray machine. Luckily, my technician was very good. She explained everything very well and had quite gentle hands.

What a weird thing, though. It's like you have your boob positioned on a shelf, then the upper shelf comes down and it squeezes your boob in the machine. You have to be still and hold your breath while they take the picture. Thank goodness there were only 4 shots. Oh well, I needed it done and I'm glad I did it. I am also glad I don't have to do it every month!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

What did people do before Ipods?

I was running this morning when I pondered this very question. Would I have been able to make it up the hill if Disturbed wasn't screaming in my ear? Would I have been able to continue without Breaking Benjamin, Cher, or Audioslave? I like listening to music as I run. It does get me moving and keep my going. It also sometimes becomes "white noise" - I don't focus on the sound per se, but it does free up my mind for other thoughts.

What did those folks in the 70's do when running became such a trend? Listen to the birds chirp and the wind blow in the trees? No nature for me - I have a couple of hours worth of my favorite music on a machine the size of a binder clip. I love technology!

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Oh Blessed Sleep!

After having a hard time sleeping Sunday night/Monday morning, I was pretty tired last night. I fell asleep rather early and went right into a deep sleep. A deep sleep until about 4 a.m. I was awakened with cramps. Yes, cramps - that lovely monthly reminder that I am indeed a woman. I had to get up and take 3 Motrin. About a half an hour later, I was finally able to rest again.

The alarm woke me at 6:05 for my morning run. Needless to say, I wasn't very happy about it. I left the house at about 6:40 for my 3 mile run. It was one of those runs where nothing is quite right. Your legs feel heavy, your mind cannot quiet, and your rhythm is not working. It feels as if a chain is coming out of your back and pulling you backwards for every step you move forward. I made it to almost 1.5 miles, and needed a break. I walked a few minutes, then continued to run the rest of the distance. It was a tough run, but I did it. I ran 11 miles last week, and I hope to repeat it this week. I had better get a good night's sleep tomorrow!