Saturday, November 29, 2008

Holiday weekend

It's been a good long weekend so far, with one really sad note. We got a call this morning that our friend Gene died of leukemia yesterday. I worked with his wife Nancy for years, and we saw them several times a year. Gene was diagnosed in January, and went thru a whole gamut of treatment. He was such a vital person that it's hard to imagine him gone.

The first phone call this morning, at 0630, was from Camp Cooper to see if Ralph would come to work. I was sound alseep, looked over and he wasn't in bed, so I told staffing that he was at work, that he's switched days. Of course, I thought it was Friday, but it was Saturday, so he was really here. Staffing got real confused, and called the ER to tell them that Ralph was there, which of course he wasn't, so they called back and he answered. Since he didn't know I'd talked to them, he was confused by their call. So we were all confused. Just goes to show, if you wake me up, don't expect a rational answer.

Last night Steph and I went to Heather and Ed's, while Ralph really was at work. Jim and Sharon came down with the kids, Chris and Pam and their kids came over, and Charity and Jim also were there. Jay and Kate called Steph, so she invited them down. We all had a nice final visit to the Mays Landing house.. I understand why they're moving, but I'm sure going to miss them.

Today I went to Joann's Fabrics, because batting was half price. Of course I had to buy some Christmas fabric at 60% off! I came home, got Ralph, and we went to Lowe's to get paint for the dining room and hallway, stopped at Chick Filet for lunch. Ralph put a first coat of paint up, while I pinned a quilt on the HQ16. Then I ran out of steam, so I'll quilt it tomorrow.

Goal for the week:
To quilt the quilt on the HQ


Thursday, November 27, 2008

Gobble Gobble!

I've got sweet potatoes in one crockpot, broccoli casserole in another, cranberry sauce made, and I just took the blueberry pie out of the oven. In a half hour we'll leave to pick up my Mom and Ralph's Mom, and head over the river and thru the woods to Mike and Donna's house. Heather, Ed and the kids will be there for a while, then they'll head to Ed's parents' house for dinner.

Little Mike will be at John and Morgan's house for the holiday. Morgan has a rule that you have to have pumpkin pie for breakfast on Thanksgiving. Manda and Ben are going to a friend's house for dinner. Steph is with us.

There are usually between 20 and 25 people for dinner at Mike and Donna's. Kids, who are actually in their early 20's now, wander in and out. And everyone who walks in the door has to write in the Thanksgiving Book.

I read about the Thanksgiving Book in a magazine years ago, and we started on in 1998. It's simply a blank journal book, and you write whatever you feel like. Dad used to write Good Grub every year. Some write a sentence, some write a page. It's so much fun to go back and read what was written in previous years. When we started the book Jacob and Katie hadn't been born, and we didn't even realize that we needed babies in the family. Since then Heather and Ed have gotten married, Eddie and Julianna have been born, and my Dad and Ralph's Dad and Uncle Frank have died.

Things I'm thankful for:
My family.
Ralph's good health since his brain surgery.
My friends- some I talk to every day, some only a couple times a year, but they're all important to me.
My job- it might make me crazy some days, but all in all I love it.
My toys- the sewing machines.
My car- I love my car.
Toast, Miss Millie, and Frenzy, and Cliffie.
The internet- some days it keeps me sane!


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Almost Turkey Day!

We had a half day at work, which was lovely! Did a few errands on the way home and was still home before 2 pm. Now I'm going to rake out the kitchen and get the ingredients and tools together for the food I'm making for tomorrow. Sweet potatos, broccoli casserole, and cranberry sauce are my contributions.

I follow the blog of Penny, a women that I "know" from the HGTV website. It's been an ongoing saga- her dog Jezebel has had cancer, and gone thru treatment. When I saw the title of her latest post, I knew they had lost her. How can I be so sad about a dog I've never met?

There are people who look at fuzzies as "just animals", and I feel sad for them- they're missing so much joy and unconditional love. Sometimes when I sit down I have a cat and a dog on me, and it's the greatest feeling! Of course, if the cat is Frenzy, she doesn't think you should move until she gives the word, and tends to dig in with her claws.

And now to get some work done!


Sunday, November 23, 2008


I can't believe this weather- it feels more like January than November! I might have to get the winter coat and gloves out- it's been in the low 30's every morning for the last week. We had snow showers one day, which was pretty, but way too early.

I love the weekend, but didn't accomplish much. I tidied up the bedroom and went food shopping. Last night I couldn't get warm- I was under the electric blanket with a sweatshirt on. Finally it dawned on me to take my temp (I've only been a nurse for 20 years!) and it was 99.8. Took some ibuprofen, and felt better.

Ralph, Steph and I went out to dinner at Olive Garden, and had a nice time. I hadn't seen Steph in 3 weeks- she's been so busy with work and school. Toast is staying here, and that way Steph can come right from work on Wednesday without having to go back to NE Philly to get her.

Steph helped me join Facebook. I'm not sure how much time I'll spend on it, but all my daughters are on it, so I can check up on them!

Thanksgiving dinner is at Mike and Donna's, as always. I'm making sweet potatoes, broccoli casserole (all the "kids" love it) and cranberry sauce, and anything else that strikes my fancy. It'll be "Little" Mike's first Thanksgiving away from home, but at least he'll go to John and Morgan's, as Manda did the years she was in school in Florida. Ralph is off this year- hospital schedules sure are a pain. Heather is working that night, so they'll be there for appetizers and salad. Then she'll go home for a nap, and Ed and the kids will go to his parents.

We're having a half day on Wednesday, which is a first for this district, and I love it. And when we go back to work, it'll be December!

Things to be happy about:
Ralph, Toast and Miss Millie are dozing on the couch.
Steph lives close enough to come home almost every weekend.
A free turkey from the grocery store!
A two and a half day week, followed by four and a half days off!


Friday, November 21, 2008

End of a long week!

What a busy week! I was out three nights this week, which is unusual for me. Monday I went to an inservice "Tools for preventing teen suicide". Wednesday was dinner with the nurses. Thursday I took a half a sick day to go to the dentist to have my crowns put in, then to an inservice from 4.30 til 7.30 on Delegating Epinephrine. (If I'd have know who the presenter was, I'd have skipped the Thursday inservice.)

So now it's Friday evening, and I'm tired. I just want to curl up with the cat and my book and relax til Ralph gets home from work. Tomorrow I have to consult with Donna to see what I'm bringing for Thanksgiving dinner, and then shop for ingredients. All the usual Suzy Homemaker things have to be done also.

Next weekend is a 4 day holiday weekend, so that's something to look forward to!


Monday, November 17, 2008

A new week

Monday again! Seems like more than 1/7 th of my life is spent on Mondays. It was a busy weekend. Saturday I quilted two little pieces that will be Christmas gifts, and took a nice long nap. Sunday morning we ordered carpet for the dining room, family room and hallway from Smart Carpet. It's a nice almost hunter green, and will be installed on December 9.

Then my friend Barbara came over and got acquainted with the HQ16- she was also working on Christmas gifts. After she left, Ralph and I went to Heather and Ed's and watched the kids so they could go out with people from Heather's work. It'll probably be the last time we babysit in that house, which makes me sad.

Today everyone who came in to my office had the Monday blahs. After work I went to an inservice about preventing teen suicide, for a continuing ed. hour toward the 30 I need for my license.

We didn't see Steph and Toast this weekend. Steph is totally immersed in projects for her college classes. Between work, school and trying to have a social life, Steph keeps really busy and manages to maintain a fabulous grade point average. We're so proud of her!

And now I'm off to the shower and bed!


Thursday, November 13, 2008

Two years ago today

Two years ago today my car got stolen. It was an awful experience. We had a staff meeting, so I came out of work at about 3.45, and my car was missing. I kind of stood there for a minute, thinking, "I know I left it there." There being my assigned parking space. I had only been assigned to that building for 2 1/2 months at the time.

I went back in the building, and called 911. Security pulled the tapes, and we watched a young couple come up the street, into the parking lot, and get into my car as fast as I get into it with a key! My car was old, a 1993 gray Caravan with 140,000 miles on it, but I loved it. The car had been gone an hour when I found that it was missing. The police wrote a report, and Steph came to get me. My nephew the cop told me that it might be recovered, but not to hold my breath. That was on a Monday.

On November 16, which was a Thursday, I got a call from the Park Police that my poor car had been recovered, but it was in pitiful condition. The story was that a couple was in Cooper River Park after midnight, and the park police told them to leave. The van pulled out slowly (poor car took a while to get warmed up) so the cop ran the tags, and they came up stolen (they weren't my tags). He put on his lights, and they took off. They missed a turn and the van went into the river. Glug glug. The male and female swam to shore and were arrested, and a rapid response towing company was called to pull the van out.

November 20 we went to see my poor car. The windows were broken, it was full of stuff- backpacks, car seats, unopened packages of tools, mail. I had only carried liability on it, so it ended up costing me money for the towing. The towing company guy accepted the title and would junk my poor car.

As events unfolded, it turned out that the 25 year old man who stole it already had a car theft charge and a weapons charge. I got to write a letter and tell the judge what having the car stolen cost me. The little creep got 3 years, and has to pay me back $2000 when he gets out, but as the prosecuter said, I won't hold my breath. The young female (she's no lady) also got jail time. I'm glad they both got to go sit in jail, and I hope they rot. As I told the park police, I'm sincerely sorry they didn't drown, or get shot by the cops.

I got a wonderful car, a 2004 caravan with a great electronic alarm system. I found that the old caravans are loved by lowlife thieves, because they're easy to get into and start. In August, I got a letter that the thief will be up for parole this fall. I considered a restraining order, but since I never got a good look at him, it wouldn't be effective. I did give the letter to my principal, in case the district wants to take out some kind of order to keep him off school property.

It's been two years, and I'm still pissed. And I'm still sorry that the bastard didn't drown. And I hope he tangles with the wrong (or right) person, and gets what he deserves.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Now back to your regularly scheduled life!

I'm so glad the election is over! The election wasn't the problem, it was the constant commercials. I was taping everything I wanted to watch, so I could skip the awful commercials. You gotta wonder, do the commercials get votes for the candidates, or cost them votes.

As the Clintons found out, change don't come easy. If the senate and congress aren't with you, you can make all the promises you want, but you can't keep them. So will we really have change? Or will it be same old, same old.

So Halloween is done, election is done, and next is Thanksgiving! I have to hit the cookbooks and figure out what I want to make. We all go to brother Mike and SIL Donna's, and most of us cook. I do a broccoli cheese crockpot that the "kids"- who are now in their 20's for the most part, ask for every year. And of course, Joseph's Trifle.

Birthdays this month- nephew Kevin will be 34, nephew Joseph will be 22, sisters in law Donna and Morgan have birthdays a day apart, and friend Franny has a birthday.

And we have a 4 day weekend, starting now! I'm going to spend it with Heather and Ed and the kids.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Vote early and often!

Ralph went at 0645 and had an awful line to wait in. I went at 0845 and sailed right in and out. Mom did hers by mail, because she just can't stand in lines anymore.

School was closed today because of the election, and I had a long list of errands and chores to accomplish. I only have one more, and that's printing out something, so no biggie.

We're off Thursday and Friday for NJ Teacher's convention, so I'm spending time with Heather and Ed and the kiddies. There's only about 5 weeks left until they move to NC, so I want to see them as much as possible. It's been damp here, and my knees are killing me.

Going back to standard time is strange, as it always is. I'm tired by 10, but awake before the alarm. The cat is still on daylight savings time, and expects to be fed as such.

The NY Beauty class was a lot of fun. They have great rolling chairs, and it made me realize that my $2 yard sale chair just isn't doing it. Ralph always wants to know what to get me, so that 's what I told him.

Unless the election results come in super early, I'll just have to wait til morning to find out who the new POTUS will be.


Saturday, November 1, 2008

All Saints Day

AKA November 1. Wow, the year is almost over! It always seems like once Halloween is past, Christmas comes roaring up.

I did some sewing last night. I'm working on the Crossed Kayaks (which we keep calling Crossed Canoes) that I took the class in last week. I have about half of the blocks made, and hope to finish the rest today. I don't like having too many things going at once, and this is a block that I think I would forget how to make if much time went by without me working on it.

Tomorrow is a paper piecing class for a NY Beauty Wallhanging that I'm taking at Village Quilter in Mt. Holly with my friend Barbara. The shop is providing the fabric kits, so it could be interesting. Reading the directions, it needs a high degree of contrast between the fabrics.

Registration is open for Machine Quilters Expositon in NH, the week after Easter. It opened at midnight, but since I was asleep then, I registered for classes this morning. I'm taking an all day mystery class with Mark Lipinski, which I'm looking forward to. I met him in Houston last year, and I think he'll be a fun teacher. I signed up for 8 classes, an ice cream social, and the banquet, over 4 days.

Unfortunately I'm in NJ now, and not in Houston. The world's biggest quilt show, Quilt Fest, is this week. Last year Steph and I went to visit Manda, and I got to spend two days at the show. This year, Steph has a Saturday morning class, and Manda is going to Ren Faire today. Next year!