Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Year's Eve

Well, it's New Year's Eve! We had a big surf and turf dinner of steak and lobster with homemade french fries tonight. I don't like lobster or even steak that much, but I did eat a small piece of steak. Having studied lobsters, I don't think I could get myself to eat one even if I liked the way it tasted.

I have to say the lobsters were pretty cute. I felt bad that we were about to cook them.

But as we dunked them into their steamy demise, I couldn't help but think that what sucks for them, is a yummy dinner for my family.

It's a fitting thought for the New Year I think. With the end of every year, or chapter in our lives, comes a new year and bigger and better things.

I'm certainly looking forward to 2009 and a fresh start! And when I figure out exactly what I'm going to do with that fresh start, I'll be sure to let you know! ;) Until then, I do know that it will definitely include blogging, so keep an eye out for many more posts to come!

Wishing you all a safe and happy New Year! I hope 2009 brings you health, happiness, love, laughter, and good times with good friends!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Oh the joys of car ownership!

We are still at my parents' house enjoying a nice, relaxing vacation. Today, both my parents had to go back to work so we planned on getting our inspection sticker on my car. We left my parents' house around 11:20 am, hoping to get it in before the mechanic went to lunch. We get to the place, wait 20 minutes because someone else's car was in on the machine, only for the guy to tell us that their inspection machine just broke. Great! What a waste of time!

So I call up my dad and ask where else in town we can get a sticker. We head across town and arrive at the second garage at 11:53 am. Unfortunately, they inform us that their mechanic goes to lunch from 12-1 pm. At this point, my hubby is pretty irritated, but there's nothing we can do about it and it's lunch time so I decide maybe my hubby will be a little less grumpy if he gets some lunch in his belly.

We go back to my parents', eat some lunch and arrive back at garage number two right at 1 pm. Now, there are 2 cars in front of us though, so we wait. Finally, the mechanic pulls our car in. Less than a minute later, he informs us that there's a new Massachusetts law and that our license plate is too faded. Since he hadn't started the rest of the inspection, he told us to go to the RMV and turn in our plates to get some new plates and then he wouldn't have to give us a rejection sticker.

At this point the hubby is livid! I'm laughing because I know there's nothing we can do about it. So we head to the RMV, only to pull up to the door and see that apparently it has moved! We drive back across town to the new location and low and behold they are closed for lunch from 1-2 pm! I can now see fire in my hubby's eyes.

At this point it was only 1:20 pm so we drove back to my parents'. I left the hubby at home since he was still such a grump. My father left work and drove with me down to the RMV at 2 (in case they gave me any problems switching the plates) and of course the line was out the door! We wait and wait and finally get the new plates (and at no charge!)!

I screwed in the new plates and headed back across town to the second garage. Now there are 3 cars in front of me. I wait and wait and wait some more. Finally, after what seems like a lifetime, they pull in my car and at this point I'm expecting something else to go wrong. But no, it passed and I got a sticker! It's about time!

I paid and got the Hell out of there!! I arrived back at my parents' house at 3:07 pm, 3 1/2 hours after I left orignially! What a way to spend a day, but I guess it just comes with the responsibilities of owning a car!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Merry Christmas!!

It's a day late but Merry Christmas everyone! Christmas Eve and Christmas are always REALLY busy for us, so I didn't have time to post but I wanted to share a few photos.

We spend Christmas Eve at my Gram's house. There's always a ton of food and we exchange gifts with my mom's side of the family. This year was great because 2 of my cousins have kids now. It's a lot of fun to experience Christmas through a child's eyes again.

No matter how old we get, my parents still go all out at Christmas! Our stockings are hung by the chimney with care.

Presents that weren't there when we went to bed are piled under the tree when we wake up.

And there's always a huge Christmas dinner, complete with fancy linens, china and all!

After dinner, we exchange gifts at my hubby's mom's house, then we go up to his memere and pepere's house, then we go to to my great great aunt and uncle's house. So it's a very long day!!

But despite the long day, we had a great Christmas this year and are blessed to have the family we have. The best part though was that my soon-to-be brother-in-law who is in the Air Force was able to come home and surprise everyone! It was so nice to wake up Christmas morning and have him there with us :)

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas Goodies

I spent all day today baking. I didn't finish and get in the shower until 4:07 pm!! I made 4 different kinds of cookies (sugar, chocolate chip, snowballs and double-chocolate snowquakes) to fill 3 tins as gifts, then I helped my mom make a 5th kind and some homemade chex mix. Usually the best part of baking is enjoying what you made, but since I'm giving all my cookies away I couldn't really do that. I did, however, test each kind. I couldn't give the cookies away without making sure they came out alright now could I?! ;)

They were all pretty yummy if I do say so myself!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Fancy Pants

Little miss spy has a nice pair of jeans that she likes to wear. Last week, she mentioned that she thought there was something wrong with them because they zipped and buttoned on the opposite side as all her other pants. I, of course, looked down at my jeans and she was right. Wednesday night was our work holiday party so we all got dressed up. The first time I went to the ladies' room I noticed that my black dress pants zipped on the opposite side too! Little miss spy was in meetings most of the day so I forgot to mention it to her until yesterday when we were leaving. She got all excited and began to explain!

Apparently, she mentioned the situation with her jeans to The Schwarz and he knew why this was! It was such a cool trivia fact to find out, that I just had to share. Apparently, if you go back in time, wealthy women used to have someone else dress them. So the zipper and button was on the opposite side to accommodate a right handed person that was dressing someone else! Fancy women's pants have retained this for some reason, even though women tend to dress themselves today. This also explains why men's pants never have the button and zipper on the opposite side because they always dressed themselves!

I thought it was a pretty cool fact to know, so a big thanks to The Schwarz for sharing his knowledge on fancy pants!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Do you think God gets annoyed?

So there's this person that really annoys me and little miss spy. This person is nice enough really, they just have some really annoying habits. You have to know that little miss spy and I talk about just about everything, it's not that we are gossipy people really. So we IM back and forth about this person's annoying habits occasionally and have a good laugh.

Yesterday, we were having a GOOD laugh at this person's expense. (I promise we really aren't mean people!) So I jokingly commented, "We are both going to Hell." Little miss spy's response was priceless. She said:

I doubt it.
Even God's probably annoyed.

LOL This, of course, made me laugh harder! She then suggested I write a post contemplating whether God gets annoyed. This was all in good fun and we then headed off to our work holiday party. Well, I think God was annoyed at me for that conversation and even thinking about writing this post because the party seemed like some kind of punishment! So here I am writing more of a humorous summary rather than a contemplation. Don't want to get myself in any more trouble with the Big Man! On a more positive note: The food was good last night! So that's always a plus! :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


I looked out the window this morning and there was snow on the ground!! Granted it was only a dusting and the rain was pretty quickly turning it to slush, but it was snow! My parents have had snow for a while now (which makes me very happy because that's where we'll be for the holidays and there's nothing like a white Christmas) but we've only had rain so far. Seeing the snow instantly put me in a good mood! I am so ready for Christmas and to spend some time with my family.

Anyway, I got to work and one of my co-workers mentioned that she had to shovel behind her tires! We definitely didn't have that much where I live. I'm also spoiled and have these 2 magic buttons. I aim them out the window, press them at the same time and VOILA! my car starts for me. I let the car warm up for about 10 minutes before I have to leave and all the snow and ice melts right off. It's pretty wonderful if you ask me. :)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


My dad is an avid hunter! He loves getting out in the woods and has been on hunting trips all over the place. He's hunted deer, moose, caribou, bear, you name it! Though he loves it, he's not one of those hunters that just hunts for sport. He cuts up and eats everything he shoots. And if he can't eat it all himself, he shares it with his hunting buddies.

Anyway, little miss spy came across these cool antler outlet covers from Nendo!

I thought they were so cute and they totally reminded me of my dad, so I thought I'd share them with you too!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Mental Health Day

When I was little, my dad used to let us have "Mental Health Days" once in a while. Now don't get me wrong, by "once in a while" I don't mean like once a month, they were rare occasions. Once, I remember, he took us skiing. Other times I just stayed home from school "sick" even though I wasn't really sick. As a kid I don't think I always really needed them, but I think the idea behind them was a good life lesson. They taught me that taking care of myself mentally is just as important as taking care of myself physically. And if that means taking a day off every now and then, that's ok.

As I've gotten older, I've found "Mental Health Days" even more necessary in my life. I try not to take advantage of them and take them too often because I do have responsibilities, but they are extremely helpful to "recharge your batteries" as my dad would say. (As a side note, my dad has a whole bunch of sayings. I'm working on collecting them in one place and plan to write an entry on them. Some of them he got from my grandpa, which my dad and uncles lovingly refer to as Dave-isms, but he has plenty of his own. So keep an eye out for an entry on Bruce-isms, hopefully in the near future.)

Anyway, I needed a "Mental Health Day" yesterday and I set some rules for myself. I didn't think about money, losing my job next week, my hubby trying to find a new job, or anything that's been causing me stress lately. I hugged and kissed and talked with my husband. We cleaned up a little bit around the apartment, watched some tv and I knitted like crazy on the baby blanket that I still haven't finished! It was exactly what I needed.

I find that I'm so busy and tired during the week, that weekends are even busier doing all the personal things I wish I could accomplish during the week. To have a day to decompress and relax was just what I needed to feel a little bit more positive again. So now it's Friday! I feel much better and it will soon be the weekend. My parents are coming to visit so that will be nice. Although I think we're going to the mall so that will probably bring my stress level right back up!

Hope you all have a nice weekend!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Rain, rain go away...

This is what the weather is like outside today. And coincidentally, I feel like I have my own personal cloud hanging out over me.

7 more work days and hopefully the sun will start to come out for me.

Monday, December 8, 2008

This season's sock collection!

Little miss spy requested that I write about this season's sock collection. I thought it was just funny enough a request to maybe make me smile today, so here goes...

Everyone loves a nice warm pair of socks in the winter! Old Navy has these comfy looking fuzzy socks. I love these kind for around the house in the winter, but they are just too thick and warm to wear with shoes in my opinion. I tend to lose circulation in my toes if I do, so my feet end up simultaneously freezing and soaked with sweat!

The green with red trim are especially festive for the season!

American Eagle seems to have a lot of striped socks on their website. These were my favorite:

Although, they seem really tall! You have to have long, skinny calves and loose jeans for those socks!

Target even has socks for your iPod if you want!

And now for the best socks I found so far...Walmart has these if you happen to love Christmas and...poodles?!

And if these socks weren't great enough just for the Christmas poodles, they even have separated toes!

Hopefully you enjoyed my favorite socks of the season! I hope you all have nice warm tootsies! :)

I have a serious case of the Mondays...

It was a pretty relaxing weekend for me! I was completely content to sit on my couch, in my sweatpants and do almost nothing. I didn't even shower yesterday, and it was wonderful!

I did finish the little bit of Christmas shopping I had left on Saturday though. :) I am a very happy camper about that. I just have to wrap it all and bake a few dozen cookies.

I barely slept last night. I get myself thinking about things I have to get done and things going on and I get all worked up. I know I shouldn't think about it once I get in bed, but sometimes I can't help myself. What is it about advice that we can all dish it out with ease, but when it comes to taking it we're completely oblivious!

Needless to say, after a nice relaxing weekend and not much sleep last night, I was not too happy when the alarm went off this morning and I had to come to work.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

What would you do if you won the lottery??

I read something recently that posed the question, "What would you spend the money on if you won the lottery?" First of all, I'm too cheap to play the lottery, so me winning is highly unlikely! However, I thought it was interesting to think about.

I think the first thing you have to do is assume we're talking about a large amount of money. I mean, I think we're talking millions. Because you can technically win the lottery by winning $5 on a scratch ticket and no one would really be interested in what you did with $5.

So, somehow, miraculously, I won the lottery by not playing because I'm too cheap to waste my money! *hahaha* YESSSSS!! This is what I think I would do with it.

  • First, because I'm anal about money, I would probably figure out how much I would have to pay in taxes on the total I won. I would put that much in an account so I wouldn't have to worry about spending too much and having that money when the time comes to pay Uncle Sam.
  • Second, I would pay off all of our student loans! And my sister's too!
Those 3 things instantly came to my mind. After that, I had a more difficult time. I would definitely donate some to charity, but I would probably do a lot of research first to decide which one. I would probably take my parents on a nice vacation because they have done SO MUCH for us over the years and have taken us on so many vacations! But I think the majority of what was left would probably go in the bank. *hahaha* Boring, I know! But I'm a saver! Nothing makes me happier than a little financial security. (Which by the way, happens to be a good thing considering our current situation! You never know when you might need it!)

So, if you won the lottery big, what would you do with it?

Friday, December 5, 2008

I'm so hungry!

As I mentioned before, I ate WAY TOO MUCH good food while I was home for 5 days over Thanksgiving. Ever since I've been back, I've tried to get back on my normal food schedule, but I'm hungry ALL THE TIME! I think my stomach stretched out from all the pie and carbs and general goodness I ate.

You see, the women in my family are "feeders." This is a term I have developed on my own, so please allow me to explain. Essentially, anything can be a reason to pressure you to eat something loaded with butter, sugar, salt and anything else that may cause an early death from clogged arteries. For example, some of these reasons include:

You're getting too skinny, eat something!


Don't worry. Have something to eat and you'll feel better!


We're celebrating something, so we eat.


We're sad about something, so we eat.


It's been 2 hours since we ate something, let's eat.

or one of my favorite guilt trips

That's all you're having?! Don't you like the dinner I made??

or if you just stop by to say hi

What can I get you to eat? You can't leave without having something!

I think you get my point. Don't get me wrong, the food is GOOD! But everything in our family revolves around eating.

This got me thinking about foods I always have in our pantry/refrigerator/freezer, and how everyone has different staples that they always have on hand. The 6 things we always have are:
  • eggs
  • cereal
  • American cheese
  • chicken in the freezer
  • a couple boxes of pasta
  • and my hubby always has ice cream in the freezer
It looks like a sad little list, but in a pinch pasta, a fried egg or cereal makes a great, quick dinner!

So, what's ALWAYS in your pantry/refrigerator/freezer?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Wedding Invitations

My sister and I finally got her wedding invitations finished and out in the mail yesterday! I still have a pretty long list of things to accomplish, but it's nice to cross a significant item off the list! I am pretty proud of them so I took a few photos to share with you.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

'Tis the season

Thanksgiving is over, so for me (and most people) that means getting out the Christmas decorations! Although I have to point out that the house next door to us has had their Christmas lights on their house since before Halloween! Anyway, I love decorating the Christmas tree. For me it isn't a Christmas tree unless it's a real tree too! Growing up we always had a real tree and there is no comparison to those weird artificial ones that people store in their attic. I love walking through the field to find just the right one. I love dragging it to the car and strapping it to the roof. I love walking into my house and having the smell of the tree meet me at the door.

We found a really nice tree at Whitney's Farm this year! They were all pre-cut so we didn't cut it down ourselves, but it was just the right height and perfectly symmetrical. My hubby thinks it's the best tree we've ever picked. I have to agree. Besides a very small hole that we oriented towards the wall, it's a near perfect tree.

Everyone has their own style when decorating their tree. Some people like white lights and some like colored. Some people like ornaments that all look the same, some like a random collection, and some even put bows. Personally, I like all white lights and lots of random ornaments, with a little silver tinsel put on last. Most people put their star or angel on the top last, but I like to put it on first. I like to start at the top and work my way down. Every year my hubby fights me about this, telling me that my way is wrong. But every year I put the star on first! :) As promised, here are some photos of our decorated tree and some of my favorite ornaments:

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Back to the grind...

Well, we're back to reality. We had a wonderful but very busy few days in our hometown. I was enjoying myself and the company of family and friends so much, that I didn't take one photo the whole time I was home, so you'll have to settle for a brief description.
  • I ate WAY TOO MUCH good food on Thanksgiving.
  • Despite the throngs of people, I got most of my Christmas shopping done on Friday.
  • Saturday, we had a blast and danced up a storm at the second wedding reception for our friends John and Katie. It was really nice to see a bunch of our friends and be able to celebrate with them because we couldn't make it to their wedding! :)
  • And if that long day of shopping and all that dancing wasn't tiring enough, we helped my brother-in-law and his wife move from 10am to 8:30pm on Sunday, in the sleet and snow!
  • And just as our luck would have it, yesterday was sunny and almost 60 degrees! Of course we wouldn't have that nice day to move them in! We slept in a little bit because both my hubby and I were pretty sore from the moving, but we went and picked out a Christmas tree before we drove back. We set it up last night, but I haven't taken any photos yet, so I will post those tonight. (Or maybe tomorrow, we'll have to see how tired I am.)
I'm back at work today and not so happy about it. But I only have a 4 day week so I should be grateful for that! Tonight, my sister and I have to finish assembling her wedding invitations so they can go out in the mail. Photos to follow soon! Happy Tuesday everyone :)