Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Things We Notice When We Finally Notice Things

Michele and I have lived in our house for four years in July. Our counter tops have always been the same: white with a pale gray random all-over design. Well, for nearly four years now I thought the gray lines were just random squiggles. I took a good look at the counters today and realized that those lines are not random at all. There are little fish and boats, harps and other harp-like instruments, what looks like peace signs, flowers, butterflies, and lots of other little line art images. I am amazed that I never noticed any of this before. It got me to thinking about what else I may be missing, what other things have I not noticed that are right in front of me? So I decided to be more observant of the things around me. Of course, I already get pretty distracted about little details and think that is why I am so clutsy (for example, I was distracted by the way the sun was reflecting off the fur of the groundhog in my neighbor's yard last week when I fell down the stairs), so maybe being more observant isn't such a good idea.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

I Did It!!

Well, today I accomplished the impossible - two impossibles to be exact. With some over-the-phone coaching from my dad, and only a little screaming, on my part, I moved Michele's car from the garage. I can't really say I "drove" the car out of the garage, as driving denotes at least a modicum of control and it certainly felt like I had absolutly no control over that car!! But, I did move it out of the garage with no injury to me, the car, the garage, or to my car (thankfully, I managed to stop Michele's car before it became intimately acquainted with the front grill of my car!). Michele had backed her car into the garage, so it made my, and my dad's, job easier, but we both decided it was not a good idea for me to either back the car back into the garage or to try to turn it around and drive it forward into the garage.

My second amazing feat was the mowing of the lawns - both front and back! After the excitement with the car, I almost decided to retire to my room for a nap, but I persevered and actually mowed the grass. It really wasn't very hard at all! I do have to admit that when I finished I took to my bed for a brief nap. Hey, after moving a car and mowing two lawns (front and back count as two, right?) I deserved a little snooze!

Friday, April 24, 2009


One of the benefits of my job, that I rarely take advantage of, is the opportunity to work at home, or W@H. Well, today I decided to do just that. It was a beautiful day, so, around 11 this morning, I decided to set myself up outside and enjoy it. It was great. Listening to the birds, watching the groundhog dig up my neighbor's yard, and feeling the warm breeze just made the day a treasure. AND I got a lot of work done. It was a real treat, but not without a price. I paid the piper in the form of a fall down my concrete back porch stairs resulting in a very sore foot, baby toe, and bruised anbd swollen knee. I made an additional contribution by stepping on some kind of thorny weed - my foot still tingles from that one as I don't think I got all the stickers out. But, I must say, the day was well worth the price. I just might wear shoes next time!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Sunny Days

We have a few really nice days in store for us here in Rochester. The whole weekend is supposed to be sunny and 80 degrees. The logical thing for me to do this weekend is to work in the yard. The task I should focus on, logically, is the lawn. However, I have two issues - okay, make that three issues:
  1. I have never mowed a lawn.
  2. I do not know how to mow or even how to start the lawn mower.
  3. The lawn mowers - yes, both of them - are behind Michele's car in the garage and I don't know how to drive Michele's car.

I am sure I can overcome issues 1 and 2 with the help of my wonderful neighbor Rita and some over-the-phone coaching from my dad, the lawn master. However, Michele is freaked out about me overcoming issue 3. I was not a promising student when she tried to teach me to drive standard. I am actually really excited to try and I think that is where her concern lies. I suppose she has a point: excitement paired with lack of skills is a dangerous combination. I'll let you know what happens. Keep your fingers crossed that my next post isn't about driving through the back wall of the garage! (That's a joke, Michele, trust me!)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Michele's Anniversary 'Card'

I've been working on a gift for Michele for our most recent anniversary. About five or six years ago Michele gave me a card - the most beautiful card I've ever seen. I've loved it ever since she gave it to me and always thought I would do something artistic with it or let it inspire a project. When thinking about what to make for Michele for our anniversary, I decided to finally make something based on the lovely card.

I'm very pleased with the result and know Michele will love it, too. Quilting is a real passion of mine, so it was really fun taking something that I have loved for years and recreating it in the art form that brings me the most joy. I took some liberties with the design and had a ball learning new techniques and improving known skills. This was my first stab at applique and I found I really like it. It was fun to combine piecing and applique and do it all with a twist. I think it was a perfect way to honor the love Michele displayed when she picked out a card that was so perfect for me.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Recovery and New Agenda

I am well on my way to recovering from the flu. My energy level is still low and the cough is still hanging around, but I otherwise feel well. While I was sick I had a lot of time to think and finally feel like I have a handle on all of my responsibilities with Michele away - took me long enough, right. I've just really been struggling to fit it all in. But I discovered my problem - I'm crazy. I'm rarely in the mood to clean, but when I am I take it to the extreme and burn myself out. For example, the week before last, I was in the mood and ran around like a whirling dervish and cleaned the entire house from top to bottom, except the kitchen, which was the one room that needed it the most. Another example is this weekend. Again, I was in the mood to clean, so I polished the oven door, but didn't clean the stove; washed the kitchen windows, but not the dishes; groomed one cat (I have three, remember); changed the sheets, but didn't pick up the dirty dishes on the bedside table; and washed down the bathroom walls. That's right - I washed the bathroom walls and didn't clean anything else in either bathroom. So, I came upon this incredibly complex and convoluted concept: focus on one chore every day. Just one, not weird bits and pieces of a whole bunch of chores. Just one a day and the house will always be managed. Well, today is day one, so I'll let you know how it goes. One good thing is that I can check "bathroom wall washing" off my list for the week!

On a slightly unrelated note, I just this minute learned what a "whirling dervish" is. I always thought it was an animal related to the Tasmanian Devil. I don't think I could be more wrong!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Philadelphia Flu

I had to take a last minute business trip to Philadelphia this week. I left on Tuesday morning with a slight cold and came home last night with the flu. It's the first time I have been sick since Michele has been on the road. Usually when I am sick, Michele makes me eat this really yucky multigrain hot cereal. I complain every time, but I eat it. This morning, I woke up and realized that I could eat anything I wanted and that I wouldn't have to eat that gross cereal. So, I went down to the kitchen and made myself - what else? - the yucky multigrain hot cereal. It's what Michele would make me, so it made it feel like she was here taking care of me.

Friday, April 10, 2009

A Chronicle of My Trip to Salt Lake City

Hello! I am sorry that I have been so neglectful and have not posted pictures of my trip, yet. My sister actually emailed me and demanded that I do so - so, it wasn't quite a demand, but every suggestion from a big sister seems very commanding. I will rectify the situation and chronicle my trip for you all in words and images.

I arrived in SLC several hours before Michele, so I called my friend Cindy and convinced her to take the afternoon off to play with me. Since I was hungry, I asked Cindy to take me to a Utahian restaurant. Here we are at a wonderful Mexican restaurant just after we finished eating our vegetarian burritos. Bet you didn't know Utah was famous for its Mexican food - neither did Utah!

While we were still at the restaurant, Michele called and said she was on her way, so Cindy and I headed to my hotel to await Michele's arrival. Little did we know that her trainer, Mike, has a teeth brushing fetish and needed to stop on the way to brush! So, Cindy and I waited a while.

They finally arrived, but I cannot post the picture of Michele when she first arrived. Let me just tell you, she had been on the road for two months without our beloved barber, Willie, and she hadn't showered in about a week! To my eyes, at the time, she was a rainbow, an ocean, just perfectly lovely. Looking at the picture now, however, she was quite a bit worse for wear!

Before Michele and Mike got their much needed showers, we all crowded into the truck so that I could see how Michele has been and will be living for the next while. It is really cool in there! Of course, I don't have to live there, but it was neat for a visit! They even let me drive! OK, so maybe the truck wasn't running and I didn't actually move anywhere, but sitting with my feet on the pedals and my hands on the wheel sure felt like driving to me!

That evening, Cindy took us to the best vegan restaurant - the same one Michele blogged about when she was in Utah last. Ahhh, yummm! Cindy ordered just as much food as the last time and we all enjoyed and got fuller than full!!

The next morning, Michele and I were on our own. We set out on an adventure to find, what else, a Starbucks! Every time we asked the GPS to take us to one it lead us to an office building, the airport, and even to the Temple! The fourth time was the charm and Michele got her coffee.

We then headed to CR England to get Michele a haircut. As I mentioned before, she really, really needed one after two months on the road. On the left is my lovely lady before her haircut by that oh so nice barber. And here she is after! What a difference! She says she felt like herself again.
After Michele's haircut, Cindy took us to Park City and we had a ball. It was snowing and beautiful. We could see the skiers and snowboarders livin' it up. For some reason, Cindy and Michele became fascinated with every set of stairs that we saw and we had to climb them all. I still don't know what the fascination was, but, oh, what a view once we reached the top - every time!

While in Park City, we rode a trolley, had fresh squeezed OJ and caramel apples - though vegan Cindy just had a plain apple on a stick and professed it extra delicious because it was on a stick! - sat and took pictures with every animal statue we saw, including a moose with painted toe nails and sequined eyelashes, and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves!

We ended the tour of Utah with a trip to The Great Salt Lake. I felt it was important to ingest some salt from the Great Salt Lake - though my companions did not agree. I tasted it twice and it didn't taste as salty as I thought it would - boy, I hope that was salt I ate!! I also wanted to stick our feet in the water, but Michele and Cindy would only agree to a finger, so I contented myself with that.

After we left the lake, we had another yummy dinner (at Jeremiah's favorite restaurant - we missed you!!), after which the server rubbed my belly - what can I say, they are friendly in Utah - and then we all went back to the hotel and did Michele's laundry! It was actually very fun. At this point in time, the battery in my camera died and I intended to charge it in the room to have it ready for our last day in Utah. Of course, in all the rabble rousing in the laundry room, I forgot to do that, so the whole next day I used Michele's camera and she has all the pictures! We had a ball, though. We went to a lovely church full of wonderful - and, of course, friendly - people, then went to a park for a walk, but it was too cold, so we just sat in the car and talked. That afternoon and evening we spent with Cindy and her very, VERY big family at the birthday party of one of her younger sisters. On the way to the party, Michele and I stopped at a Joann's to get supplies to make Ellen a card. It was the tiniest Joann's I have ever seen - it actually looked like a Goodwill store, so Michele and I called it the Joann's Thrift Store!

We couldn't help but have fun with Cindy's family. Each sibling gets to pick what they want for dinner on their birthday and Ellen chose a Salad Bar! What providence that three vegetarians would be attending!

All in all, my trip and visit with Michele - and Cindy - was perfect! I thoroughly enjoyed myself and hope you enjoy it through this blog!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Seeing Michele

My trip to Utah was lovely! Seeing Michele was the best treat!! We got to spend a lot of quality time together and enjoyed spending time with our friend Cindy and her family. One thing I miss the most with Michele away is attending church with her, but we took the opportunity to go to Palm Sunday service in Utah. We went to the nicest little church in Salt Lake, had a wonderful time, and met some really nice people.

I swear Salt Lake is home to the friendliest people on earth! Cindy took us to a great Chinese restaurant - Jeremiah's favorite (Jeremiah is our good friend & Cindy's boyfriend, but he is away in San Francisco at school) - and I ate so much food I needed to slouch down and pat my belly. Well, as I was doing this, one of the servers came by and said "Oh, are you full?" then rubbed my belly - yes, that's right, she rubbed my belly!! - and said "Yup, you sure are full!" See, that's just how friendly they are in Salt Lake.

Cindy also took us to the Great Salt Lake, which was delightful! I took some salt off a rock and ate it - it wasn't as salty as I thought it would be, at which point I started to question whether it was really salt I had eaten!

Michele and I spent most of our trip sightseeing and doing other really romantic things, like laundry and getting Michele a haircut. Boy, did she need one!! We went to the barber on the trucking company campus. At first she was really scary. She said "If you don't make up your minds about this haircut soon, I'm going to be really pissed off!" She warmed up to us soon, though. By the end of the cut, she was like a favorite aunt - you know that favorite aunt that will pinch you as soon as look at you, and sneaks you cookies, but then tells you they will make you fat? Yeah, she was like that favorite aunt.

Michele and I both feel that our visit fed our spirits and that will make the next two months a lot easier! We really had a ball!!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Off to Utah

Michele called yesterday and said that she will be in Utah over the weekend so that Mike can exchange trucks. So, I am jetting off to Utah for a visit! I can't wait!! I, with the help of my dad, made all the travel arrangements yesterday - easy as pie! The hardest part is working my butt off to make sure that the seven projects I am working on at work will be alright without me for a few days. I worked until 8:30 last night just to make sure that all the work needed over the next few days will be done by someone else - graphic designers, audio talent, and editors. I am actually glad that I will be so busy until I leave because the time is really flying! Most likely the next time you hear from me I will be in Utah with Michele! Oh, what joy!!


Related Posts with Thumbnails