Monthly Archives: August 2008

Wordless Wednesday

The First Day of School, 2008.  Beanie, on the left, enters fourth grade; Punkin’ Pie starts sixth:

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Filed under celebration, fun, general kid stuff, Home and Family, kid cuteness, learning, Little Bits of Nothingness, love notes, Parenting

Ten Things Tuesday

I was going to give you another movie post (what am I up to now? 40? I’ll have to check my archives), but there’s a lot happening in Mrs. Chili’s life right now, so you get a big old helping of randomness. Gird your loins!

* The Chili family is headed back down the Cape this coming weekend! Gerry and Honey have (incredibly graciously) opened their home to us, so we’re packing everyone up and heading south on Thursday after school lets out (the girls go to school this week on Wednesday and Thursday, then have the long weekend off from Friday to Monday. No one knows why). I CANNOT WAIT to get back there, both to spend more time with my friends and to be back in that beautiful environment. This time, I’m getting LOTS of pictures!

* Later today, Mr. Chili and I will be the proud owners of a pair of scooters!

This one’s his (though he can’t decide on red or black; I say red, but he’s not sure):

and this one’s mine (it’ll be silver):

The dealership was having a “buy one, get one half off” sale, and it was just too good to pass up. Besides, I had a reintroduction to the adventures of parking at Local U. yesterday, and I’m eager to get something I can chain to the bike rack in front of my building. Even before the university even opens, the parking is a nightmare. I’m going to take the motorcycle safety course (that’s held, coincidentally, in the parking lot of TCC), even though the scooter isn’t powerful enough to require that I have a motorcycle permit on my license. I want the experience, though, before I take the thing on the road.

* I’m going to have an office at L.U. and, if I’m not mistaken, I’ll not have to share it with anyone! How freaking cool is that?! It may well be a supply closet (I’m having images of Ainsley Hayes in the West Wing with her steam junction office), but I couldn’t care less – I HAVE AN OFFICE!! I’m hoping to get the key for it tomorrow, at which point I’m going to start packing the place with books.

* Speaking of books, if you’re a book geek (and you know who you are) now is a GREAT time to troll the hallways of university buildings. In our building, for example, there are tables and boxes and piles of books that are being given away – FOR FREE, Baby! I’m not sure where they came from, but I don’t care – I’m not looking this gift horse in the mouth. I came away with an armload of reference books yesterday morning (and I WOULD have taken more if I could have gotten into my office!). I’m in hog heaven.

* Today is a day devoted to household chores. The Boywer boys are coming to Chez Chili this morning (Bowyer’s back to school and Tonks is at work, so the boys are coming to Auntie Chili’s today) and I’m going to use the time that they’re entertaining each other to do laundry, vacuum, and try to get things in general order. I’m pretty ambitious this morning; I expect to get a lot done.

* I showed my lit. kids The Sixth Sense last night. GOD/DESS, but I love that movie! My only regret is that I can’t see it again for the first time. OH! I almost forgot! While I was at TCC yesterday (surreptitiously liberating some books from the library), Joe found me and offered me another gig for next semester! I’ll be teaching this exact class again – lit on Monday nights from 8:15 to 10:20. I’m looking forward to being able to stay at TCC for another semester.

* This has been the summer of chocolate peanut butter ice cream; I just can’t get enough of the stuff. I’ve never been a big fan of choco-p.b. ice cream; I mean, I loves me some Reese’s, but my tastes in ice cream have never leaned in that direction. Mr. Chili’s been groovin’ the p.b. fudge ice cream for years, but it never really did much for me until this season. I’ve been plowing through half gallons of every variety I can find. We’ve tried a couple of Hood varieties and Edy’s – not to mention the positively yummy scoops that Don bought for me last weekend. Mr. Chili tells me that I have a tendency to wear out my cravings, and this is no exception. Mmmmmm!

* I am LOVING John Adams by David McCullough. I’ve never read any of his work before, and if this is any indication of his ability, I’m going to head right into 1776 as soon as I’m at the back cover of Adams. I pre-ordered the DVDs of the HBO miniseries as soon as I heard a feature story about it on NPR (we don’t get HBO, so I had to wait for the DVD release), and we loved every freaking second of it (in fact, I’m looking forward to watching it again with O’Mama). Seriously – fantastic stuff. I just finished a section that included this quote, which I’m going to print out and frame somewhere, I think:

You will ever remember that all the end of study is to make you a good man and a useful citizen.”

Yeah; that’s the point, all right.

* Today marks a week since the last of my dental work was done, and I still don’t feel right. I was amazed that the work that was done last week kicked my ass more than getting the wisdom teeth out. I’ve got to talk to my dentist to find out why that is; I was too stoned to remember any of it.

* Here’s another picture I took while at the Cape with Gerry. I messed with it a bit, but I don’t know if I made it any better…

Happy Tuesday, Everyone!

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It’s MINE!!*

I made the last payment for the Puck!

I paid the thing off a year ahead of schedule (when I was finished paying for my student loans a while back, I just rolled that monthly payment into the car).  I’m not smart enough to do the math to figure out how much interest I didn’t pay, but I bet it was pretty substantial.

She needs a bath and a good vacuuming – I’ll post a prettier picture after I run her through the car wash later this week.

Anyway, the last bill was for $30.96, which went out electronically today!  She’s MINE – ALL MINE!

(*when you read this, you’ve gotta do it like Stephen in Braveheart.  “Yeah, it’s MINE.”)

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A New Voice in Our Chorus

Morgan has opened her very own blog!

Morgan is incredibly thoughtful and considered, curious, funny, and kindhearted, and I’m so glad she finally decided to start up her own space!

Go on over and check her out; I seriously doubt you’ll be sorry you did.

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What a Wonderful Time!

At the risk of sounding superlative, I had a fantastic time down the Cape with Gerry and Honey.

Auntie and I arrived just when we said we would. We didn’t encounter any of the notoriously horrific Cape traffic which, given that we were arriving on a Saturday morning the week before Labor Day, was nothing short of miraculous. We found Gerry’s house, found Gerry in it, and made our introductions.

It felt exactly like I thought it would; I was instantly comfortable. Though Gerry was quite different than I was expecting him to be – I had in mind someone much older and far less friendly when, in fact, I met someone warm and energetic and funny – I felt like I was meeting an old friend because that’s exactly what I was doing.

Honey is nothing short of wonderful. Though I’d never met her or had any contact with her whatsoever that I was aware of, I liked her instantly. She is the kind of person who resonates with me; she’s friendly but not often gregarious, she is practical and no-nonsense, and she’s smart and quietly but wickedly funny. She made me feel welcomed in her home, and I warmed to her immediately. In fact, as we walked the beach, Auntie and Gerry ended up wandering ahead of Honey and me, and I wasn’t the least bit upset by that; I very much enjoyed hanging with Honey (and I’ll tell you what; that woman is a HAWK when it comes to finding sea glass!)

Auntie and Gerry down the beach. Doesn’t he look like a tourist in his “dork hat” (his term, not mine) and his camera?

We spent a little time touring their (gorgeous) home, Gerry gave us a quick lesson in some of the basics of Photoshop, then we all took a short stroll to the beach where we combed for the aforementioned beach glass. Though it wasn’t a two-blue-day in the strictest sense of the word (we didn’t find any blue glass, in fact), that didn’t curb my delight one tiny little bit. I adore beach combing, and I commented that, if I lived nearer a beach where such an activity were actually fruitful (there’s no really good hunting on my local beaches – no glass or pretty shells, really; mostly grey stones and mussels), I’d have to see my chiropractor a whole lot more than I already do because I’d be looking down all the time. Anyway, by the time we made it up and back, I had a pocket stuffed full of sand-and-salt worn glass bits. (Some of it was collected by me, but most of it was handed to me by the professionals) Observe:

After the beach-combing, we decided that it was time for something to eat. Since several of us are of the opinion that life is short and therefore, dessert should be eaten first, Honey treated us to some of the yummiest (and prettiest) cupcakes I’ve seen in a long time:

Honey sent the rest of the cupcakes home with me for the girls. My children love Miss Honey before they even met her!

After the sweeties, we – Gerry and Honey, Auntie and me, and Gerry’s brother, Don, who’s been staying with them from Illinois – packed ourselves into Gerry and Honey’s Element (Honey rode in the way back which didn’t have a seat – we essentially stuffed her in the trunk, and it was funny to converse with her with just her head sticking up from behind the back seats) and headed to Wood’s Hole for potential lunch. On the way, we detoured so Gerry could get pictures of a bright pink bus (Gerry: “Don, do we need pictures of a pink bus?” Don: “Yes.” Don is, I discovered, a man of few words) and we stopped at a lighthouse to snap a few photographs. Here’s one of mine, doctored a bit with what I learned yesterday from Gerry’s able instruction. Not bad:

We meandered our way to Wood’s Hole but discovered that, since it was such a singularly gorgeous day, everyone was out and about, so there wasn’t a parking place to be had in the whole community. While forming a plan B for lunch, Gerry took us by a beautiful little harbor so I could take some pictures (HIS pictures are MUCH nicer than mine – go here to see some);

and then he and Honey decided on a restaurant in Falmouth that would attend to everyone’s needs (Auntie wanted clams, I wanted something I could eat that would ensure that we wouldn’t be visiting the local hospital). Auntie got her clams and I had a fantastically yummy burger. Honey got to inhale her favorite chowder and Don was delivered what looked like a positively yummy plate of lobster salad. Sometimes, I really do regret the damned allergy.

Once lunch was through, Don decided to treat us all to ice cream, which we ate as we strolled past some of the fun little shops that line the main street in Falmouth. Ice cream consumed and lunch settling in, we decided to head back to the homestead where we were promised some “sloth and idleness.” Gerry downloaded a picture or two from my camera and gave Auntie and me some more lessons in photo manipulation, but the rest of the afternoon was spent being still and comfortable.

Nervous about the traffic caused by the people who had to move out of their rentals yesterday afternoon, Honey suggested that we head out around the 5:00 time-frame, and she gave us a more efficient route to the highway than the one that got us there that morning. We sailed home – there was a minor slow-down around the gas tanks south of Boston, but there is almost always at least a minor slow-down around the gas tanks south of Boston, so I was neither surprised nor annoyed.

I had a perfectly lovely day. There’s nothing about it I would change, and I’m hoping that it works out that I can spend more time with Gerry and Honey before they do their snowbird thing and fly back to Florida for the winter. I’m grateful to both of them for their generosity with their time and their home, and for being exactly what I knew they’d be – old friends.

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Adventures in Photography

Auntie and I are heartily enjoying our time down the Cape with Gerry.  Here’s an example of one of the things we’ve been doing – here’s a picture taken with my camera (I wasn’t behind it when it was taken, though – Gerry took this shot…and played with it in his photo program).  Pretty, non?

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Goin’ Down the Cape

Auntie and I are headed down the Cape* this morning to meet Gerry of TwoBlueDay.  I’m looking forward both to time with my sister (about three hours each way in the car) and to finally laying eyes on this man who’s been writing intriguing comments on my blog (and posting gorgeous pictures on his own) for so long.

One of the things I truly treasure about blogging is the relationships that I’m able to form with the people who read me, and whose blogs *I* read.  Akin to the pen pals of old, blogging buddies can be friends for years without ever having seen one another or heard each other’s voices; just because I’ve never been in someone’s presence doesn’t mean they’re not a true friend.  So far, all the bloggers I’ve met in real life have felt like just what they were – good and old friends.  I’m betting Gerry will be no different.

I’ll be back tomorrow with stories and, hopefully, pictures (one of my goals is to have Gerry teach me a thing or two about making my photography a bit more satisfying).  I hope your Saturday is as much fun as I expect mine will be.

*this is how native New Englanders express the act of visiting Cape Cod (see item #50 on this link). We never say “we’re going to Cape Cod” or “we’re going to the Cape;” we say “we’re goin’ down the Cape.”  No one really knows why.

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Filed under admiration, Blogroll, celebration, Friends, fun, Home and Family, my oh-so-exciting life, reading, road trip!