Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Oh Sandy.....

Well, we made it.   

Sandy stopped by, overstayed her welcome (I mean she JUST WOULDN'T LEAVE) and left quite a mess.

We came through OK and lost a shutter, a few tree limbs, and lots of sleep, but we - and our home - are OK.

I don't think I could ever live somewhere that storms such as this are a regular occurrence. 

The winds whipping through those trees at 2:00 in the morning frankly scared the shit out of me. 

I hadn't left the house since Saturday and the kids and I have a major case of cabin fever and are totally on on each others nerves.  Tempers are running high and patience is running short.   Dad and I finally got out today and drove around to check out the damage.  

Here are a few pictures of some local flooding.  We live close to a river and although we are at a much higher elevation which means we are safe from the actual house being flooded, we pretty much have to cross the river and feeder streams (all of which are over their banks) to get anywhere.  

The bridge to my house. You can't see it but there are sport fields near the third concrete support...

The entrance to the sports fields is now a boat ramp. 

Same place.  The parking lot, running trails and soccer fields are under there ...somewhere...

You normally cant even see the river from this spot. The river banks are on the OPPOSITE side of that tree line.  Usually. 

These were taken at around noon today, and the river is supposed to crest tomorrow so I can't imagine what that will be like.

I hope all of you that were in the storm's path made it through OK!

I'm thinking about all my family and friends from New York and New Jersey up through New England.  They got hit so hard...


Friday, October 26, 2012


Guess where I live....

(Hint - apparently we're "totally screwed")

After last years Snow-tober, we learned our lesson....

We're bringing in plants and deck furniture and taking down the new gazebo.

I have my toilet paper.

Most importantly - Brian hit the liquor store on the way home. 

Wish us luck!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Catch up time

I had no idea it had been so long since I posted anything.  BAAAAAAD Blogger.

It would appear that I am extremely busy - too busy to post, yes?  Um, no.  Just lazy really.

Let's play catch up, shall we??

1.    Olivia just completed her 5th year of cheer and is gearing up for competition in mid-November.  Things are about to get REAL up in here.  We take our competition very seriously around here.  I love her coach this year, and while it's a very small squad this year, they're a great group of girls and I know a lot of them pretty well after five years.  Liv wants me to be "more involved" next year   This is huge because usually she doesn't even want me to acknowledge that I'm her mother most of the time.  But next year she wants me to assistant coach or be team mom.  We'll see how she feels in about 6 months when I have to actually make a commitment to the next season.  It will be her last season before high school (a WHOLE new ball game) so I'd like to spend it with her.

2.   Oh, the joys of raising an almost 13 year old.  We had a pretty rough summer this year and Olivia actually almost lost her cheer privileges   Luckily, she seems to have turned a corner somewhat and matured overnight almost.  She's pleasant to be around again and the level of snarkiness has died to down to once or twice a week rather than once or twice an hour.  I'm OK with that - she CAN'T be pleasant all the time - who is?  And she's absolutely allowed to have her own opinion and disagree with me and she absolutely can be in a bad mood.  She's an almost 13 year old girl (Hello Hormones!!).  What she CAN'T be is disrespectful or hurtful.  Not that she doesn't have her moments, but it's definitely been better these last few weeks.  And yes, I realize I just jinxed myself and the next time I see her she'll be spewing green goo everywhere while her head spins around and she levitates a la Linda Blair.  But for now, all is well.

3.  Sydney is loving gymnastics - and she REALLY has a talent for it.  She's already moved up a level and wants to take more classes.  So, it looks like we'll be selling our blood to pay for lessons (That shiz is expensive!!!).  But she is so enamored with it - and wants to spend all her free time at the gym - that I just can't deny her.  This is the first time she's really been this into a sport after trying many different things.  And given that she had a very bad experience the first time she took gymnastics two years ago and wouldn't set foot back in the old gym where she took lessons, this is a God send.  It took us two years to convince her she should give it another try, but once she did, that was it. I'm so excited to see where she goes with this.

4.  The dogs are both still plugging along.  Chauncey has slowed down significantly over the past few weeks and we are trying to prepare for the day when we have to say good bye.  He's been such a great dog and such a blessing to our family that to even think of it has me in tears.  Baxter is slowing as well, but not as quickly.  The mass on his leg hasn't grown or changes at all and it doesn't bother him at all so I think we made the right decision to do nothing for the time being.  At 11 and 12, they are nearing the twilight years of their sweet puppy lives and it's simply heart breaking.  They've been getting lots of love and attention and LOTS of treats so hopefully we can make them happy these next few years (hopefully).

5.  The house - Oh, the house.  I have about 5 projects in the works right now and ALL of them must be done by Christmas.  It's my year to host Christmas dinner, and of course we have the Hopkins Family get together at my house as well and then we are having our annual holiday party on December 29th (since we didn't do one last year we're going all out this year).  It's going to be a busy season with lots of people coming and going and I want everything done before December 15th so I can concentrate on cleaning and organizing before the parties begin.  I have scheduled for the carpets to be cleaned right before Thanksgiving (before I decorate for Christmas) and I'm thinking about hiring someone to clean my house those last two weeks of December.  It just seems like a waste of money to do that, but I'm not sure I'll be able to keep up at that point - ha!

So that's about it for now.  Everyone's healthy (for the most part) and happy (happy being a relative term) and I'll share what we've been working on soon.  Let's just say I've been getting my paint on, using the wallpaper steamer - A LOT, and trying my hand at upholstery.  Oh yeah - it's been interesting.