Wednesday, August 22, 2007

No "divorce TV" tonight

We're watching MythBusters. I love that show - I think it's one of maybe 3 shows on the planet that Kevin and I can actually both enjoy.

So for once, we don't have to have what my Mom calls "divorce TV" (both watching TV at the same time, but on 2 different channels in 2 different rooms.)

Party Time

If there's one thing I like more than playing travel agent, it's playing PARTY PLANNER! I've got the big September double birthday party coming up - Brendan's turning 7 on the 15th and Amanda's turning 9 on the 21st. Since they're only 6 days apart, the "family" party is ALWAYS a combined affair. I always worry that we won't be able to come up with a good "unisex" theme that will be fun for both of them. But this year it was easy. My little "girly-girl" Amanda is suddenly a die-hard Mets fan - so SHE suggested a Mets/baseball theme for their party. Of course that works for Brendan too, so I hurried up and printed off these invites before she would have a chance to change her mind. I think they came out kind of cute!

So now I'm in full-fledged party-planning mode. I think my menu will revolve around typical "baseball stadium" food - hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy, maybe pizza or nachos? and of course a baseball-themed cake. Of course I'm going to need some "real food", too, for the adults, so I guess I'll expand it to a BBQ menu (burgers & chicken to go with the dogs??), and add a few salads or something. I have some baseball-themed decorations left from Ryan's last birthday party (which had a general "sports" theme) - recycling - gotta love that! And games/activities should be pretty easy with this theme.

Now I'm just trying to decide if I'm going to do separate "kid" parties for the two of them, like I've done in the past. Amanda wants to have a sleepover, but Brendan would be happy to just invite a couple of friends to the "family" party. I should probably just go with that - it would save me some time and money - but I feel a little guilty cause he's never had a separate "friends" party yet. Ryan and Amanda have both had at least 2 big "invite-the-whole-class" type birthday parties in their lifetime - and Brendan has never had one.

Well, I guess I'll sleep on it and decide tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Life is also too short for internet BS

No more Scrapjazz for me for a while.

I posted an innocent little spin-off thread a few days ago, and a few pictures of my house, and boy did things get out of control. All of a sudden my little "don't you hate that" kind of thread got turned into a complete bashing of my finances and attitude. I don't want to post the details here, cause that'll just get me all upset again, but let me just say that I found out who my friends are.

It's just as well - I was getting way too hooked on that site anyway. I'm a very shy person in real life, so making friends online is always easier - maybe too easy. It's so easy for me to get "sucked in" to an online community and spend way too much time there, and then I end up ignoring things that need my attention in real life.

Maybe a little less internet time will allow me to have more time for things like exercise, and time with Kevin, and fixing up the house, etc.

Just looking for the silver lining here.

I still kind of feel like I got punched in the stomach today - my "safe" little place on the web is not so safe anymore. My circle of "friends" is not as friendly as I thought. It will take me some time to get used to not having that place to vent anymore. But as I found out, venting to those people (well to some of them anyway) just gets me in trouble.

Life is too short for that kind of BS.

So I guess I'm going to have to do my venting here from now on.

It's really not healthy for me to care so much about the opinions (unsolicited or otherwise) of people I've never even met. So I need to back away, get my own "real" life in order, and maybe some day I'll be able to go back, when I can go back to feeling that it's "just a message board".

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Playing travel agent

Uh-oh - it's been a week and I haven't updated my blog. Bad girl. No, wait - I'm not going to say that. I do admit that I have a problem with starting projects and not finishing them, but this is just for fun - so what if I don't keep up with it every day? Life is too short to beat myself up over silly things like that.


I've been busy playing travel agent this week. We've decided on the dates and destination for our next family vacation, and now I'm working out the details, making reservations, etc. We'll be going to Texas from October 5-14. (Actually more like Oct 6-13 - we have a late flight on the 5th and an early one on the 14th - so those are just travel days)

This trip is really for the kids, since Kevin is taking me to Hawaii without them in November. So the kids got to choose where we were going. Their first choice was California - we've been there 3 times in the last few years, to different parts of the state, and they just love it. But Kevin told them that the airfare from NY to California was too expensive for this time around, and besides, they should pick someplace they've never been before. So Texas it is.

Anyway, we're going to spend most of the time in San Antonio, and a couple of days in Houston. We're taking them to Six Flags Fiesta Texas (we are really ROCKING those season passes we bought this year!!!), Sea World, the Riverwalk, the Alamo, the San Antonio Zoo, and the Natural Bridge Caverns (and a couple of other things, museums, etc if we have time). Then we'll be moving on to Houston to visit the Johnson Space Center and a few museums.

The kids are really excited. I was surprised that they were so enthusiastic about visiting a state other than California. But really, they're such good little travelers - they really enjoy discovering new places. They have done so well on all the trips we've taken them on. As long as every trip includes some "kid stuff" (amusement parks, zoos, aquariums, etc), we can get in a lot of educational/cultural stuff too. I just bought a book the other day, called 500 Places to Take the Kids Before They Grow Up. It was cool to look through it and see how many of the places we could check off on the list. And now of course, the kids have a goal to see how many MORE they can check off in the next few years.

Guess I'll be playing travel agent a lot.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Look out Martha Stewart

So yesterday, the kids and I went up to Connecticut for the day to visit my Aunt Evie. She doesn't get too many visitors, so apparently she was really excited that we were coming. I think maybe since she doesn't have any grandchildren of her own, she wanted to "borrow" my kids and spoil them like grandchildren. She went so totally overboard to make the kids feel welcome and to make sure they had fun. And let me tell you, Martha would be proud.

She made us a really nice lunch as soon as we got there. Shrimp salad sandwiches for the adults, homemade fried chicken nuggets for the kids (but of course, since my kids eat EVERYTHING, they wanted some shrimp salad too) and a beautiful assortment of fresh fruit, including each of my kids' favorites (cantaloupe, watermelon and strawberries).

Then she set up a sprinkler in her front yard so the kids could cool off (it was REALLY hot and sticky today). And speaking of her yard, I could have sat out there all day - even though it was hotter than hell - just because it is so pretty. She has every imaginable color of flowers out there, and her garden is filled with all kinds of handmade projects. Aunt Evie is really into crafts - late at night after Uncle John has gone to bed, she sits at her kitchen table and gets creative. She goes through phases of different types of projects. Right now she is into mosaic flowerpots and handpainted birdhouses. I tell you, she really should sell some of her work - she would make a fortune. She doesn't want to though - she says that would take the fun out of it. So she just gives some of her creations as gifts, and displays the rest of them around her home. Gives the place such a charming, homey feel. No wonder my Mom and Dad love to spend their vacations there.

So back to our nice afternoon - Aunt Evie must have bought out the craft store to find things to keep the kids occupied. She gave the kids some little wooden birdhouses, treasure boxes and a couple of other things to decorate, and set them up at her kitchen table with acrylic paints, glitter, beads, glue, etc. This kept them busy for most of the afternoon, and we had a chance to chat while they were working. (I love chatting with her - she has the craziest sense of humor)

I swear she must have been preparing for our visit for days. She went crazy with homebaked goodies (chocolate chip cookies, banana bread, and some crazy cupcakes for the kids with gummy worms on them), made us a nice dinner, and wouldn't let me help with anything.

Right after dinner, I went to check on the kids, who were settled comfortably in the bedroom watching TV. Ryan said to me "This is a really nice Bed-and-Breakfast." I laughed and told him that he should really tell Aunt Evie that - she would take it as the ultimate compliment. So he went right out to the kitchen and gave her one of his famous squishy "Ryan hugs", and told her that she should open up a bed and breakfast at her house. She has been told that before, because she is that kind of a thoughtful hostess and because her house is so charming - but I could tell that it really meant a lot to her coming from an 11-year-old kid.

I think I really need to do a scrapbook page or two about Aunt Evie. She's a very special person.

Friday, August 3, 2007

I am a Tropical Flower

Man, I hear so many people complaining this week about the current heat wave we're having - but I am totally loving it!!

I always feel so much more alive in the summer. I tell everyone that I am a "tropical flower" - after all, I am a product of the Bahamas (honeymoon baby.) Kevin laughs when I say that - he says I'm more like a lizard. (which happens to be one of my childhood nicknames - go figure!!)

I don't know - I kind of like the "tropical flower" image better.

I love soaking up the sun (yes, I know it's bad for you, but I put on sunscreen - sometimes), I love going to the beach, I love swimming in my pool. I really think I need to move to someplace where it's hot all year round.

Of course, Kevin will never go for that. So I just have to soak up as much summer as I can while it lasts.

Taking the kids to the beach today...Ahhh...I love summer!!

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Just Do It

Wow, I remember posting this layout at SJ,
over a year ago. ==>

OK, so my old goal of getting "Fit by 40" didn't happen. (I was much better at doing the layouts in the Weight Loss Album than at actually losing the weight - LOL!)

Not going to beat myself up over it. But it's time to set a new goal.

I'm joining a 30-day exercise challenge on SJ. Starting today, for the next 30 days, I am going to exercise in some way, for at least 30 minutes, EVERY DAY.