Wednesday, December 26, 2007

I said yes!

Jim and I got engaged Friday night :) We had planned to do our gift exchange just the 2 of us on Friday after the hockey game.

We were back at his apartment and I was telling him he needed to open his gifts because I was super excited (I got him a leather jacket and a bread machine that he's been wanting) and he said that he wanted to give me my gift first and he proposed!

I said yes (obviously lol)

It took about a day for it to really sink in and I really don't think I've stopped smiling since Friday.

I don't have any pictures yet (he's been sick and I think I'm getting sick) but as soon as I have some pictures I'll update this poor neglected blog.

This may turn into a wedding planning blog before long :)

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas!

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Christmas shopping

I am about 90% done with my Christmas shopping and the UPS man and I are just about on a first name basis. 2 days in a row last week I came home from work and followed him to my door.

I still need to a few more things and get some things mailed off to my family and then I'm done!

The only task I don't look forward to that much is wrapping everything.

Not much going on with me - looking forward to some upcoming vacation!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Real Men of Genius

Have you heard those beer commercials on the radio? I normally flip stations when commercials come on the radio but I always stop for these and I heard a new one tonight about "Mr scoreboard proposal guy" Funny as always.

Not much else going on. Saturday I went to Cedar Point with Jim and his boys in Sandusky, Ohio for the day. I'm not big on roller coasters but I like spinny rides so it was fun :)

The best part? There's a Chick-Fil-A in the park! Had a nice lunch there. We were there from about noon till after 9pm on Saturday and then drove back - long, tiring day but lots of fun!

And so he's not left out - Hi Dad!

Friday, October 12, 2007


I broke down and turned the heat on this morning.

It was in the 30s outside and I was freezing!

I knew it was cool last night when I dug out a sweatshirt and socks and then when I was petting Abbie and Willow the tips of their ears were cold and Sushi and Sapphire where just kind of hanging mid swim in the tank that I was freezing us out.

I got home tonight and kicked the heat up a bit more so now it's comfortable in here.

Hard to believe I went from running the air to heat in a week!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Mary Janes

I've not had much to blog about lately and I was reminded it's been awhile since I blogged (Hi Mom!)

I don't think I've posted about my love of Crocs lately. My newest pair arrived yesterday!

Red Mary Jane Crocs!

If you like the idea of Crocs but are put off by how large and "ugly" the originals are then I recommend the Mary Janes - they are smaller and daintier and cute!

I got red and I definitely am going to need more colors of these!

I also found these new ones and can't wait for them to be available for purchase - I can wear these at work! Alice suede crocs

Thursday, September 13, 2007

More kittens!

I'm really being tested with kittens this week!

I stopped at home tonight after work to change clothes before heading out to meet a friend for dinner. I pulled into a parking spot in front of my building and there was a little kitten sitting on the steps! It was really skittish and ran under the steps when I got close and was watching me. I ran in, changed clothes and came back out with some kitten chow that I put near the spot the kitten was hiding. I couldn't touch it but it was watching me.

As I was in the car getting ready to back out another kitten and the mom come walking out from behind a bush towards the kitten that is hiding. I did a double take because the other kitten was a dead ringer for Nikki, a cat I used to have. Freaky. They were both skittish and looking around and then the mom started to eat the food I put out.

If I had a guess I'd guess these 2 kittens about between 6-7 weeks old. When I got home tonight I saw at least one of the kittens in the spot under the steps watching me, as I got closer it moved away. I went inside, pet my cats, grabbed a little bowl of kitten chow and a bowl of water and took it back outside. I don't know if the mom cat was under there with the kitten(s) but I am sure she was nearby.

I'm hoping that they will not be so scared of me and will let me pet them and hold them because if I can I'll catch them and take them to a no kill shelter where they'll get adopted out. Kittens always adopt out first and I hope I can get the mom cat to trust me, too, becase I will take her in so she can get fixed and adopted as well.

I can't have any more kittens, I can't, I can't, I can't. I'm sure being tested this week!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Kittens, Kittens and more Kittens

Say it with me now, no more kittens.

I love cats and it is very hard to not bring home every one I see. Saturday I went with Jim to a pig roast at one of his cousin's. One of the little girls there came walking across the yard with a teeny tiny kitten in her arms and said there were others. They had a cat that had kittens and there are 4, 4 week old kittens teetering around. Absolutely precious. 2 pure black and 2 tigers that look like Willow.

Afer awhile I snagged one of the tigers that was being carted around and around and around by one of the kids. Little thing settled right now and napped for a bit then got up and teetered off. I later found it being carted around by another kid. Very cute. Later on I was cuddling one of the black kittens and it curled up under my neck and slept for at least 3 hours. Everyone kept telling me that I had to take it home because we had bonded.

It took all the strength I had to say no and put it back. At the end of the night I took two of the kittens back into the barn and tried to hide them out of the way of the kids because they were being manhandled by them. Very good-natured kittens!

If I had a larger apartment or lived in a house I would have taken one. As it was Jim had to tell me no and keep telling me that I can't have any more, 2 are enough for me.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Long weekend

I'm rather sad to see a long 3 day weekend coming to an end. It was a nice break from work and just an all around nice weekend.

Saturday I slept in, was lazy and then Jim and I went to the mall to wander around and window shop, grabbed a quick drive thru dinner and then went to Starbucks for a treat.

Sunday I did some grocery shopping and laundry, just hung around the house.

Today I went to Potter Park Zoo with Jim, his boys and his parents and grandmother. We packed stuff for a picnic lunch and enjoyed that after the zoo. I took a bunch of pictures - hopefully they turn out! It was nice to get outside in the great weather and see his family again.

Tomorrow it's back to work :(

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Harry Potter

I'm finally up to book 6!

I've been a late attendee to the Potter craze but am now happily reading the books. I've seen the movies and about 3 weeks ago decided to start reading the books.

I normally don't read magic type genre books but I am really enjoying the series and recommend it to anyone that hasn't read them yet!

I'm hoping to be done with 6 sometime this weekend so I can start the 7th and final book! Not reading the spoilers about the book on Scrapshare is killing me!

Monday, August 06, 2007

Make Way for Ducklings

Do you remember reading the book, Make Way for Ducklings as a child?

In the Boston Public Gardens there is the Ducklings Statue!

The gardens were great, lots of beautiful plants and flowers and the swan boats (closed when we got there)

and you never know who you'll run into in the gardens!

The Freedom Trail part II

Boston Common
America’s oldest public park, the Boston Common, began as a common grazing ground for sheep and cattle. Eccentric Anglican William Blackstone settled on Beacon Hill with only his books for company in 1622. In 1630, Puritans from Charlestown joined him to share the area’s potable springs, but by 1635 Blackstone bristled at the increased populations and moved to roomy Rhode Island to satisfy his reclusive nature. He returned to Boston on a white bull some years later to propose to his beloved.

Situated on 44 acres of open land, it was used as a common pasture for grazing cattle owned by the townspeople of Boston. The Common later became a "trayning" field for the militia and was used as a British Army camp during the occupation of Boston. The Common’s varied uses also included a place to hang pirates and witches or publicly pillory criminals in “stocks.” It has also served a higher purpose as a place for public oratory and discourse. Reverend Martin Luther King spoke here, Pope John Paul II said Mass here, and Gloria Steinem advanced the feminist revolution on these grounds. These days, visitors to the Common can enjoy a concert, a performance of Shakespeare or the simple, calm respite from the bustle of city life.

In the common is the Tadpole Playground which is a big area for kids that looks really fun! (I've no idea where the rest of my pictures from here went... I'll keep looking for them)

Benjamin Franklin Statue/Boston Latin School
America’s first public school offered instruction to boys, rich or poor free of charge here while girls attended private schools in peoples’ homes. The boys-only tradition finally ended in 1972 when girls were permitted to attend Boston Latin. It is fabled that on April 19, 1775 word of shots fired in Lexington circulated rapidly throughout Boston Town. Boston Latin’s instructor John Lovel was inspired to rise and rhyme “Close your books. Schools done, and war’s begun!”

A striking mosaic marks the spot where the school once stood, and where one if its most famous students Benjamin Franklin attended classes not long before he dropped out of school forever. Boston Latin School is still in operation in the Fenway neighborhood of Boston.

We stopped for a group photo near Ben

Site of the Boston Massacre
On this site, a skirmish between and angry group of colonists and a few terrified British soldiers erupted into the first deadly encounter between Boston colonists and British “red coats.”

The trouble began when a crowd of angry colonists left a local tavern and approached a British sentry standing guard outside the on a chilly March 5th, 1770. They were “a motley rabble of saucy boys,” according to John Adams who had assembled around an argument between a young boy and a soldier. Eyewitness accounts of the event are confusing. The boy was struck with the barrel of a musket by a sentry, and the crowd became a mob. They threw sticks, ice snowballs and rocks at the young British guards, and finally a wooden club that knocked one of the sentries to the ground.

It might have been their jeering taunt “fire, fire, why don’t you fire? You dare not fire?” that caused the confusion, or the panic of the young British soldiers who were outnumbered and under attack, but fire they did and within seconds 11 were wounded or dying.

Samuel Adams and Paul Revere seized upon the tragedy to spark a flame of anger among the colonists by representing the skirmish as a massacre. The British soldiers were tried for murder. John Adams, a Boston lawyer and ardent patriot defended them in spite of his contemporaries’ assertion that the event was a “horrible and bloody massacre.” He was as loyal to the ideal of justice as he was to the patriot cause.

I don't have any pictures from here, but I did see it. There is a tiny plaque in the area where this took place.

The Old North Church
Immortalized in Longfellow’s poem Paul Revere’s Ride, the Old North is the oldest church building in Boston and the city’s most visited historic site. On the evening of April 18, 1775, the Old North sexton, Robert Newman, climbed the steeple and held high two lanterns as a signal from Paul Revere that the British were marching to Lexington and Concord to arrest Samuel Adams and John Hancock and to seize the Colonial store of ammunition. This fateful event ignited the American Revolution.

If I recall correctly this was in the North End, I remember seeing it but it was dark when we were in the North End so I don't have a picture. It just means I need to come back because you can take tours in many of these buildings!

Sunday, August 05, 2007

The Freedom Trail

The majority of the scavenger hunt in Boston was centered around the Freedom Trail so I could see the sites.

We didn't make all of the stops on The Freedom Trail but we hit a bunch.

Faneuil Hall (commonly called Quincy Market)
Faneuil Hall hosted America’s first Town Meeting. Built by wealthy merchant Peter Faneuil in 1741, this imposing structure is the place where the Sons of Liberty proclaimed their dissent against Royal oppression. Faneuil Hall has served as an open forum meeting hall and marketplace for more than 250 years and has continued to provide a forum for debate on the most consequential issues of the day.

The first floor served as a marketplace for the local townspeople to sell their goods. The second floor housed the town meeting hall. Here, Bostonians protested the taxation policies of the British Empire and set the doctrine of "no taxation without representation." It was here on November 5, 1773, that John Hancock and other Bostonians held the first of the tea meetings to discuss the fate of that "baneful weed."

Faneuil Hall hosted America’s first Town Meeting. Built by wealthy merchant Peter Faneuil in 1741, this imposing structure is the place where the Sons of Liberty proclaimed their dissent against Royal oppression. Faneuil Hall has served as an open forum meeting hall and marketplace for more than 250 years and has continued to provide a forum for debate on the most consequential issues of the day.

The first floor served as a marketplace for the local townspeople to sell their goods. The second floor housed the town meeting hall. Here, Bostonians protested the taxation policies of the British Empire and set the doctrine of "no taxation without representation." It was here on November 5, 1773, that John Hancock and other Bostonians held the first of the tea meetings to discuss the fate of that "baneful weed."

Old State House
Old State was the seat of British Government during the Revolution. After the Revolution, it became the Commonwealth’s first state house and remained so until the new one was completed in 1798. The building's distinctive cupola was once the tallest and most impressive building in the town, sending the message that there was no higher authority than the king.

Some of the most significant events of the Revolution took place inside the walls of this tiny Georgian structure. It was inside the council chamber that a defiant James Otis railed against the writs of assistance in a fiery performance that ignited the colonists’ rebellion. “Then and there the child liberty was born,” John Adams later reported. Inside this building, James Otis and Samuel Adams wrote letters to other colonial assemblies, arousing their patriotic fervor. In an astonishing show of defiance, colonial legislators locked themselves inside the Chamber to resist the decrees of Royal Authority and to prevent the Royal Governor from dissolving the Assembly.

It was just outside these doors that the Boston Massacre unfolded in 1770, serving as the backdrop for the shooting that lead to the tragic deaths of Crispus Attucks and four others. Six years later, it was from this balcony that the Declaration of Independence was first read to the people of Boston. Abigail Adams was there that day and she watched as the exhilarated crowd tore down the golden lion and the silver unicorn, symbols of British rule. “Great attention was given to Colonel Graft’s every word,” she wrote to her husband John. “As soon has he ended, the cry from the balcony was ‘God Save Our American States’ and then three cheers rended the air…Thus ends royal authority in this state and all the people shall say, Amen.”

The lion and the unicorn have been restored, and now, Old State is the oldest surviving public building in Boston, housing as a museum of Boston history operated by the Bostonian Society.

The State House
Designed by Charles Bulfinch, the “new” State House was completed on January 11th, 1798, and widely acclaimed as one of the more magnificent and well-suited buildings in the country. Its golden dome was once made of wood, and later overlaid with copper by Paul Revere to prevent leaks.

It was covered with 23 karat gold leaf for the first time in 1874. The land for the State House was originally used as John Hancock's cow pasture. Today, the State House is the oldest building on Beacon Hill, and its grounds cover 6.7 acres of land. It is under the golden dome that senators, state representatives and the governor conduct the daily business of the Commonwealth.

A visit to the House Chamber inside the State House will be rewarded with a first-hand view of the infamous Sacred Cod. The life-size wood fish that hangs in the Chamber was created in 1784 as a reminder of the importance of the Cod fishing industry to the state’s economy. Why infamous? Because in 1933 it was “codnapped” by pranksters from the Harvard Lampoon. Business was suspended for several days until it was recovered. A gilded wooden pinecone adorns the top of the Golden Dome, as a symbol of the state’s reliance on logging in the 18th century. Happily, this icon has never been abducted.

Old South Meeting House
Built in 1729, Old South Meeting House was a Puritan house of worship. Old South was Boston’s largest building during the time of the Revolution, and big things happened inside. This old church furnished Boston’s boisterous patriots with a stage for their impassioned protests. They even started the Boston Tea Party here after Samuel Adams delivered the coded message. “This meeting can do nothing more to save the country!” he pronounced to the assembly. Colonists, led by the Sons of Liberty and disguised as Native Americans left Old South and walked quietly and purposefully to the waterfront where they dumped 342 chests of tea into the harbor.

British soldiers soon retaliated, turning this “sanctuary of freedom” into a place to drink liquor and exercises their horses.

Old South is now a museum but was almost lost forever when it was slated for demolition in 1876. Determined preservationists saved it within minutes of the wrecker’s ball’s first strike. Old South's reputation as a place for history-making oratory has continued through the generations. You can go inside to visit "Voices of Protest," a permanent exhibition that tells Old South's story over two centuries. It's a sometimes disturbing, often inspiring, frequently controversial, but always fascinating story of the people who have made history within these walls.

Park Street Church
This church was founded in 1809 in the midst of an exciting chapter in the nation's history. Ten people, including author Oliver Wendell Holmes, gathered in the mansion of William Thurston on Beacon Hill on February 27th, 1809, to discuss the organization of a church in this area. By mid-March, the committee had located a site at the corner of Park and Tremont Streets, and Park Street Church was founded.

The 217 ft. steeple of this church was once the first landmark travelers saw when approaching Boston. Its lofty architecture reflects an even loftier mission of human rights and social justice. Prison reform began in this church, women’s suffrage was strongly supported here, and some of the first and most impassioned protests against slavery were delivered inside these hallowed walls.

The site of Park Street Church is known as “Brimstone Corner” perhaps because the congregation once stored “brimstone,” or sulfur (a component of gun power) in its basement during the war of 1812. Or maybe it’s because old-school ministers delivered many a “hell-fire and brimstone” sermon here. The idea seems to have caught on. Even today, self-appointed prophets (not associated with Park Street) can be heard delivering their colorful and spirited pronouncements promising hellfire for the unrepentant to unsuspecting passers-by on Brimstone Corner. . The church was also where William Lloyd Garrison delivered his first major public abolitionist speech.

Park Street Church can also be remembered for a more peaceful event. "America" (My Country 'Tis of Thee), by Samuel Francis Smith, was first sung at the Park Street Church on July 4th, 1831

Granary Burying Ground
Called by some, “America’s Westminster Abby” the Granary Burying Ground’s tranquility and beautifully carved stone markers offer solace and a place for contemplation.

Some of America’s most notable citizens rest here. An elaborately embellished obelisk marks the site of John Hancock’s tomb. Nearby rests his servant Frank. Although Franks’ marker is humble, the fact that his resting place is marked at all is a sign that his employer held him in very high esteem. Other Revolutionary heroes buried here include Paul Revere, Samuel Adams, James Otis, all five of the Boston Massacre victims, Benjamin Franklin’s parents and Peter Faneuil.

Originally called South Burying Ground because of its location at the most southerly area of Boston settlement, it was then renamed Middle Burying Ground, as Boston sprawled toward the south. The current name is derived from the grain storage building, or granary, which stood on the site where the Park Street Church now stands.

Although the Granary contains only 2300 markers, it is estimated that more than 5000 people are buried here. Each tomb contained on average about 20 bodies. The Infant Tomb alone contains about 400 babies. Since headstones were expensive it was common to put several bodies of one family under one headstone with one name on it. There is discrepancy in the number of headstones and the number of people buried in the Granary. There may be several possible explanations as grounds keepers arranged the stones in neat rows to facilitate maintenance, shaped the grounds more into a mold of the new “trendy” garden-style cemetery, or wanted to encourage people to stroll in the site instead of having sheep grazing on the “unorganized,” old looking burying ground.

more tomorrow ...

Wednesday, August 01, 2007


Saw it over the weekend. Great movie and musical - I much prefer to it the other one that starred Ricki Lake.

If you haven't seen it, go see it. Pick up the soundtrack, too. (I haven't yet but will soon)

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

RIP Sushi

October 06 – July 07
Sushi, pet betta fish of Abbie and Willow jumped to his death in an accident over the weekend. I will tell you this is one of those funny ha ha ooohh kinda stories.

Sunday afternoon I was cleaning out the tank as I’ve done tons of times. I put him a glass of water so I could rinse out his tank, wash off the plants, rinse gravel, etc. Nothing out of the ordinary. Willow was sitting on the counter watching Sushi in the glass like normal.

After I got done and got the tank filled back up with fresh clean water I picked up the glass to pour him back into the tank, as I had the glass tipped to pour him in he jumped and landed in the garbage disposal side of the sink!

I saw part of his fin that kind of got caught in the stopper for the disposal so I grabbed a spoon and figured I could scoop him out and dump him back in the tank and he’d be traumatized but no worse the wear. I couldn’t get him and then as I was trying he ended up falling down into the disposal. Not knowing what else to do I decided that it was best if I ran water and flooded him and then turned the disposal on.

Willow was still sitting and watching this whole thing, at one point he came over and was looking into the sink and drain with me and then gave me the big green eyes that looked like he was asking what happened to his friend. Talk about making me feel guilty!

After the disposal had run for about 5 minutes I figured it was done and quickly went to Meijer to get Sushi II for Abbie and Willow.

Sushi II isn’t as friendly as Sushi I was but he’ll come around. I just don’t think he knows what to make of Willow and Abbie. When I feed Sushi Willow hears me open the drawer the food is kept in and gets up on the counter and when I open the tank he puts his nose in the water and “follows” Sushi around. Sushi I got used to this and would swim up to see him, Sushi II just hides behind the plant. He’ll come around in time.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Who's your Tiger?

Saturday I took Jim and the boys to Comerica Park for a Tigers game for Jim's birthday present from me.

I really like live baseball and hadn't been to a game yet this season. We left around noon (game time was 7:05) so we could drive to Detroit and get parked and be there early so we weren't rushing and stuck in traffic. Last year we got stuck in traffic and missed the first half of the first inning.

We got there with about 3 hours to spare and decided to take the People Mover around to kill some time and see different parts of Detroit and then got back to get in line when the gates opened.

The game was fun, it was tribute night to the Negro League so the teams were in throwback costumes of the Detroit Stars and Kansas City Monarchs.

The boys:

The Tigers won in the 10th with a walk off home run. Last year when Jim and the boys were at a game it also ended with a walk off home run so now the boys think they're the key to Tigers winning with these walk offs :)

(Yes, there's a story behind the ears - I saw someone wearing them last year during the play offs on TV and told Jim I wanted a pair and when I saw them I had to get them)

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Sam Adams

Those that know me know I'm not a beer drinker. I'll try a sip or two of someone's just to see what it tastes like, etc. and since Jim brews his own at home I've learned alot about it.

Wednesday night we went to Buffalo Wild Wings for drinks and dinner and I ordered a berry margarita and he tried seasonal Sam Adams Cherry Wheat, at my urging because it sounded neat.

I think I found a beer that I like! This is what they have to say about it on the Sam Adams website:

Samuel Adams Cherry Wheat® follows the centuries old American tradition of brewing beer with native ingredients, in this case Michigan cherries as well as a touch of honey. The sweet fruitiness of the cherries is balanced against the crisp, cereal note from the malted wheat and the subtle citrus flavor from the Noble hops. The end result is a sweet, refreshing beer that is light on the palate but long on complexity.

Pretty cool that it uses Michigan cherries! I'm now on a search to find some of this, I think it'd make a great beer bread!

Thanks Sam Adams for making a beer I like!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Soul 2 Soul Tour II

I'm preempting my Boston updates to post about the Tim McGraw/Faith Hill concert Jim and I went to last Thursday.

Awesome concert!

We had incredibly close seats and got some great pictures!

Taylor Swift opened for them and I have to admit I was impressed. I think she is overplayed on the radio so I was take it or leave it with her as the opening act - we actually thought someone else not as well known was opening.

I found I really enjoyed her set, she's 17 years old and I didn't realize she wrote all the songs on the album. She's very spunky and not like she is portrayed in her video's.

After Taylor was done there was a brief intermission to set the stage and then Tim and Faith opened with a duet.

After that song they both left the stage and then Faith came back out to start her set.

After Faith's set she left and then she and Tim came back and did a couple of duets together and then she left and Tim started his set.

The picture didn't turn out but when Tim sang, Last Dollar, their oldest daughter Maggie came out and sang the end of it like she does with her sisters on the song and in the video. Very cute. She got a standing ovation and a ton of applause from the audience.

After Tim's set he left and then he and Faith came back out for a few more duets and Taylor Swift came back out playing guitar.

Faith and Taylor:

Even though the spotlight moved right as I was taking this I kind of like how it turned out.