Showing posts from December, 2010
It's 6:30 PM here and there's only a little bit of 2010 left.  I can hear fireworks somewhere out there in the darkness.  Pk and El and I are just finishing up dinner (quiche and nice chewy bread) and then we'll clean up and go spend the next few hours with my brother and his children.

I spent the day doing some tidying up and some cleaning out.  The laundry is done and the closet cleaned out and my work clothes are cleaned and ready for me to go back to work.  (and I didn't forget to pack the gym bag) The groceries are purchased and put away.  I put some beans into the crock pot and they should be smelling good very soon.  We'll eat them with potato salad and ham on Sunday. 

It feels good.  I wanted to clean out the spare room and straighten it up but that's for another day.  It's not too messy but it's become a dumping ground and I want it to be an organized dumping ground.

Other than that, all the chores for the weekend are finished.  Tomorrow, we&#…
  Can you stand a few more snow photos?  This is the view out my bedroom window.  For some reason, the snow piled on top of the birch stumps caught my eye.  This was early yesterday morning.  And these are some huge icicles hanging from an ice dam in the gutter.  They were almost 3 feet long and rather impressive.  The front of the house gets the morning sun and this was about noon-ish. 

And here's my little snowmen sitting in the snow.  They're about 8 inches off the ground normally but now are just sitting on the snow.  They were covered up by the blowing, drifting white stuff for a few hours but looks like they have dug themselves out.
It's very bright when you go outside.  The light reflects off all the white and it feels like you're in the middle of a light box.  We went out yesterday to take a care package and check on one of Em's friends that she was worried about.  Turns out the friend already had someone there so we dropped off the soup and juice and came…
When it started snowing yesterday at around 11 in the morning, it looked like this (right).  Lots of fine flakes that quickly covered sidewalks.  It had been so cold that the snow "stuck" to the ground easily. By mid afternoon, it looked like this (left).  I sat firmly ensconced on my couch enjoying the company of the Christmas tree and making myself a Strider cowl.  By the end of the night I had finished one repeat and will work on it some more today.  It's the polwarth/silk yarn that drk gave me when she came to visit.  It's soft and light and I think will keep my head warm (I'm making it as long as I can to pull it over my head) without being too tight. 
And this is what it looks like this morning after Pk has started to dig us out.  It's cold.  Really cold.  The snow is powdery and light and is blowing all over in the wind.  I don't think he'll be outside any longer than he has to and I don't think we'll see too many kids outside, although …
Merry Christmas Everyone!

   I thought I'd share some decorating images with you.  I'm proud of my family's creativity.  We started with some cookies late in the day on Friday. 

 There were some normal looking holly leaves and bells and stars but who wants to see them?  We ate some cheesesteak sandwiches while the cookies were being decorated and then moved onto the tree.

Pk puts the lights on and then I unpack the ornaments and the kids hang them.  Everyone helps out with the tinsel.   It was finished by about 10 o'clock and it's beautiful. 

We were up early this morning and spent a happy few hours opening presents.  I think the best part is the explanations that go with the presents.  The "oh, I got this because....." parts.  That's what memories are made of, not the gift itself.

I must have been an especially good girl this year because I got some lovely presents including one that made me smile and laugh out loud.

I have an inordinate fondn…
It's Christmas Adam here for another 3 and one half hours. 

I had today off from work and managed to get an enormous amount accomplished, albeit slowly since I am coming down with a cold.  Not an at-death's-door kind of thing but a I'm-tired-and-my-throat-hurts-and-I-have-a-head-full-of-snot kind of thing. 

I baked the babka for Christmas morning and the chocolate torte that tradition (and my family) demands.  Both went well.  I did the laundry and cleaned the house and wrapped the presents. 

And then I took a nap. 

We were invited over to Patrick's mother's house for a holiday buffet and while the wise choice would have been to stay home, we went for a short while.  I'm sure it was nice but my heart (and the rest of my body) just wasn't in it.  Pk and Kate are out doing some father/daughter bonding time and shopping.  I am sitting on the bed in my pajamas with a cup of tea and some throat lozenges.  I plan to go to bed early and sleep late and be as la…
  Wanna see some suggestive cookie photos (notice how I cleverly avoided the P word?)? 

Kate came over after her bass lesson and we baked 3 batches of cookies and made the dough for one more to be baked tomorrow.  Elanor made her signature cookie, the Spritz.  We have a cookie gun that works when it wants to so it's always an adventure.  El volunteers to play around with it each year and makes us a batch of the cute little melt in your mouth dainties.  These are lemon flavored.
Kate learned a new skill. She learned to use the pizelle iron and made her first batch of pizzelles.  We are not fond of anisette so we use vanilla and they are light and crisp and not too sweet. 
I made the thumbprint cookies using black cherry jam (we didn't have any raspberry) and they're yummy.  I made chocolate walnut cookies and coconut macaroons on Sunday and Monday so we're on our way. 
Tomorrow we will make the pfefferneuse (spice cookies which use ground black pep…
How about a little Saturday night random?  I have recovered my holiday spirit.  It came in with the snow flakes we got on Thursday.  Locust Street with snow flurries.  There was something about the little bit of snow that finally put me over the top.  I talked to Em today and she found her spirit hiding in a box of star cookies.  It doesn't matter to me where my spirit was hiding as long as it found me. 

Friday night, Pk and I gave up date night and went to the grocery store.  If it weren't for having to give up date night, I'd always go after work on Friday.  It wasn't crowded at all.  I expected a mob since Christmas is coming soon but it was not .  We got food and then went to the liquor store to get rum and wine and beer (for eggnog, wine punch and just plain drinking).  Elanor helped me put the food away and then we were free to do the other holiday chores for the rest of the weekend.

That included shopping.  I went to Delaware this morning with Pk to get some bi…
I have spent 20 minutes trying desperately to embed this video into the blog but my analog personality is taking over today and I have been unable to figure it out.  If you follow this link, you can watch a funny holiday video.  It's worth the click.

The S word (as in Snow) was in the forecast today and amazingly, it actually snowed.  Just a bit, but enough to make the already very cold asphalt very slippery.  We were glad to get home safe and sound.  It was enough to put out the French Toast Alert.  You don't have this?  It's the phenomenon where any time the S word appears in a weather forecast it is MANDATORY to stock up on bread, milk and eggs.  We are ignoring the alert at our own peril.  We might not be able to get out for hours!

Last night after work, Pk, Elanor and I went to the mall to do some shopping.  It was fun.  We walked around and looked at lots of stuff but not much that struck our fancy. (Malls don't have much in the way of merchandise that is differe…
It's cold here.  The temperatures have not gotten above freezing here for the past two days.  Little bits of snow have fallen out of the sky but only enough to lift the heart.

I have noticed that there seems to be a dearth of Christmas spirit this year.  Do you think it's because the economy is shaky?  It was just as shaky last year and I don't remember people seeming quite so reluctant to celebrate.

I have been feeling kind of blah myself but have decided that I don't want to feel that way.  I believe that sometimes we can decide how we are going to feel and I am deciding to throw myself into the holiday and enjoy it all.

We will finish our Christmas shopping this coming weekend and that leaves me a week to do the baking.  I have to make the list of cookies to bake and see who I can rope into (encourage to participate) baking with me.  I work up until the 23rd since we have the 24th off and then I am taking the week between the holidays off.  Pk doesn't have the t…
It's 3 pm on Sunday afternoon.  I am sitting on the bed, drinking tea and reading blogs.  Pk is killing zombies.  A fairly typical Sunday afternoon.

Back up 3 hours.  We left the house and headed to Drexel Pizza to get some cheesesteaks to take for lunch with Kylie and Nadine.  We got the sandwiches and some cans of soda and headed for 30th St. Station in Philadelphia.  There's Peter Kevin looking at the board to see which platform the train is coming in on.  Doesn't look too crowded, does it?  It wasn't really.  Lots of people moving about.  Men (boys really) in uniform.  Yesterday was the Army/Navy game here (Navy won by a large margin) and they're making their way back to Annapolis or West Point.

It looks like Kylie is coming on track number 3.  I'm ready with my sign.  I don't see her anywhere so I go back to the table where Pk is sitting with the lunch and grab my cell phone to text her.  She says she's by the info booth.

And there she is!  She looks…
I was sitting at my desk yesterday minding my own business (well, minding other people's business but since that is my job basically, it's ok) when the phone rang and a coworker told me that had an extra ticket to see A Christmas Carol at the Walnut St. Theater and would I like to go.  I asked when and she said they were leaving at 9:45.  I looked at my clock.  It was 9:35.  I looked at the 2 foot high pile of charts on my desk, all crying out for attention and said "of course I'd like to go". 
So, I did.  The Walnut St. Theater holds the record for the longest continually running theater in the English speaking world.  It's only a few blocks from where I work so we walked.  And since I have this lovely camera that I can carry in my purse, I have a photo.  My sock in progress and the stage.   Yes, people looked at me sideways when I pulled the sock out and took its photo but I like to show my knits a good time.
The play was a musical and it was well done.  It …
Kylie's coming, Kylie's coming, Kylie's coming!  I got email confirmation that drk and her sister will be able to stop in Philadelphia on Sunday for just a short time but it's enough to have lunch.  Unfortunately, the Terminal Market is out of the question because of the time constraints but we should be able to find a good place for a cheesesteak (a sandwich for which Philadelphia is known). 

I'm feeling a little peeved this morning.  Pk is making some holiday gifts this year (and going through the same "am I going to finish in time" angst as any knitter) and we had to order a piece for him to complete one of these gifts.  The website has an American flag and bald eagle as part of its logo so we assumed it was an American company.  Now, I want to say here that I don't have a bias against ordering from other countries and I'm not a "have to buy American" kind of person, but I think you probably already knew that.  The issue is that we p…
I'm home today.  I've managed to pick up a bit of a cold, not much, but enough to keep me from sleeping well last night.  I don't have anything important to do today at work so I gave myself the day off.  There's a piece of pork in the crockpot with onions and garlic and marjoram for dinner.  I'll make some couscous with vegetables for dinner.  Easy.

I also have to make some cupcakes for work tomorrow for the Recovery Committee's anniversary party.  I have boxes of cake mixes so it's not going to require much work/attention on my part.

These are our snowmen and the color changing star lights in the midst of a color change.  They move from red to blue to green to yellow and back to red and then they go all crazy and manically change.  The little snowmen just sit there and smile. 
Someone said we were going to get some snow next week and it's certainly cold enough.  This makes Pk excited even if it means he'll have to shovel out the walkways and the c…
This is becoming part of our regular morning routine.  Pk scraping the frost off the windows of the car.  In the old days, I used to start the car and let the defroster clean the windows but I feel bad about the extra emissions so now we scrape.  The temps have dropped to freezing for the weekend and the week to come is not predicted to be much warmer.  It's December so it's to be expected but it was balmy and we were wearing light jackets just a few short weeks ago.  My toes are perpetually cold as soon as I get out of bed in the morning even with handknit socks.  It's a thyroid thing.  Cold hands and feet. 

I managed to twist my left ankle but I don't remember doing it (I am really getting old).  It hurts to put weight on it so I found one of my ankle braces from when I dislocated my other ankle and it's helping.  So is sitting with my foot up.  I think I'll wear my sneakers tomorrow with the brace.  Mondays are not sit-at-my-desk days.  I have to be able to…
I am not a person who says things like "OMG" or "SQUEEEEE".  Not to say that I don't get excited because I do.  I just don't do the squeee. 

Today, I feel a squeeee deep inside just waiting to get out.  When drk said she was coming to my part of the world I had hoped we would be able to meet face to face.  It didn't look good as her schedule was booked pretty tight and getting into New York City during the workweek wasn't looking good.

Then a small window opened up.  Her train goes from Washington, DC to New York through Philadelphia.  This brings her almost to my doorstep.  I asked if she might want to get off the train to have lunch/dinner/whatevermealisclosest.  And she said Yes!  How cool is that?  She and her sister are coming to Philadelphia for lunch.  Next week!

So, next Sunday (the 12th), I'll finally get to meet drk!  There's that squeeee feeling again!

Now, I just have to settle down and get some work done.  I treated myself to a…
On the Schuykill Expressway (which is the major route to Emily's house), there are signs warning of falling rocks.  The road is built through hills of rock and falling rocks are a reality in the winter when the ice and rain get into the cracks.  There are also signs warning of deer crossing. 

I'm sure you've all seen some form of these signs, they're fairly standard but PennDot (PA Dept of Transportation) has a sense of humor.  If you embiggen this photo, you can see the red nose on the deer.  The first time I saw this, I laughed out loud.  Then Pk got into the right lane so I could try to get a shot out of a vehicle moving at 55 mph.  

It makes the drive to Em's house a little more fun.

When I went shopping last weekend, I bought bananas from the Produce Junction, something I don't normally do.  They sell fruits and vegetables in bulk and we don't eat the bananas before they go bad.  I don't like wasting them.   Usually, I buy them at the grocery sto…