Thursday, October 23, 2008

A Miraculous Occurrance

The end of the first marking period is almost here. My big unit tests are coming up next Friday - yes I'm going to be that awful teacher who gives a test on Halloween. I don't have time to wait around on silly holidays. I have to grade all those tests! Anyway, I've done a really good job with my planning this week. Last weekend I had gotten way behind and had to plan some 6-8 lessons over the weekend to get ahead. It was miserable, and just like other times that I've done that, I vowed not to let it happen again. See, I like to be planned a week ahead of myself so that on Monday I'm planning next Monday's lesson. So by some twist of fate or act of God, I am not only planned a week ahead, but I got today's planning done while I was still at work today so that all I had to do when I got home was enter some grades into my computer! It was outrageous. I haven't had so much free time since I started this job. I even thought up a dinner plan and had dinner done and overwith by 7:00. I know this sounds like normalcy for many, but my evenings usually consist of sitting down at the kitchen table with my computer as soon as I get in the house - sliding over one chair to eat dinner with Josh - sliding back over to the computer and working until it's time for bed. So tonight, to be finished with my work by the time he got home was amazing. All I can say is I feel like a normal person, and it is wonderful.

So of course having this time tonight - 2 full hours before the tv shows come on! - I couldn't decide what I wanted to do with myself! I decided to blog first and then do some of the other stuff with the time I have left. I'm always thinking of what I want to include in blog posts and then I never get to write them. So I hope you're ready for this one. I feel like there's a lot to talk about.

The last post was on Josh's birthday and in case anyone was wondering, he got a new golf bag. It was fun to surprise him with it and watch him examine it, not unlike me in the store, except he knew what he was looking at. His parents came over for dinner and ice cream and that was about it.

We had also made plans to go to New York City on Friday so that was partially a birthday present too. I was off work for the MSTA conference that no one goes to, so we decided it would be a good day to go to NY before it gets too cold. Our plan was to arrive, have lunch in Greenwich Village at the pizza place from Spider-Man 2, then get down to Battery Park to catch the boat over to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. After that we were kind of flexible but mentioned checking out the changing leaves in Central Park. If you know your Manhattan geography at all, this is a lot of walking. Our bus dropped us off at 32nd street and we headed for the Village.....

Joe's Pizza! It's kind of tough to see, but the menu in the background says "You saw us in Spider-Man" Where we were sitting was a little counter facing out an open window to a little park across the street. After 3 hours on a bus and a brisk walk from 32nd down to Bleeker, it was nice to sit down, enjoy some NY pizza and people watch... all with the breeze blowing.

After pizza we continued down the island. On the way we stopped at one of Josh's favorite spots, the Firehouse from the Ghostbusters movies. He even wore his Ghostbuster's shirt that day. While we were standing there taking our pictures, a fireman walked over to the doorway eating a sandwich. We said hi and joked about Josh being a big fan. Turns out, the firehouse sells t-shirts and other stuff with their logo (hook & ladder 8) and the Ghostbusters symbol! Josh promptly took a t-shirt. We thanked the guy and went on our way. Josh was elated :o)

We finally made it down to Battery Park just 15 minutes before our boat was supposed to leave at 1:30. We got in line and shortly realized it didn't matter what the time on our ticket was. We didn't leave until after 2:00... what a long process! You first go through airport-like security (put your stuff in trays, goes through the x-ray machine, take off all watches, belts, etc. empty your pockets, walk through the metal detector). Then you stand in a mob, not a line, but a mob for at least another 30 minutes before boarding the boat. Getting on and off the boat was another 20-minute ordeal because there were so many people. Sad to say, but I wouldn't do it again! Here's the pretty view of the city from the boat. You can tell it was a gorgeous day - just a little chilly and windy (as you'll notice by my hair!).

Here she is from our boat. She was smaller than I had imagined.

Josh took my picture. The reason I look so thrilled is because the sun is in my eyes so my nose is a little crinkled, haha. I just look like I'm overjoyed to be at the Statue of Liberty. That makes me laugh.

Me and Miss Liberty. Check out that crystal clear sky!

Hmmm... silly husband.

Us being cute in front of New York :o)

A pretty picture I took of the Flatiron building on our way back up town. I liked the lighting, and lets face it, it's just a really cool building.
We never did make it back up to Central Park. It's all the way up in the mid-50th streets. Because of the very slow process of getting on and off the boat for the Statue of Liberty, we didn't make it back on land until 4:00. As you can see in the flatiron picture, the sun was going down - and in between tall buildings, that makes it really chilly. By the time we made it back to 32nd/33rd (the Empire State Building) it was after 6:00. We were pretty tired from all the walking. We knew we wanted to eat at Heartland Brewery and there was a location up near Central Park and on the bottom floor of the Empire State Building. So we decided not to walk any further since our bus would be picking us up from there anyway. We enjoyed some great food and a few delicious microbrews. Josh had the Empire Premium and another I can't remember. I had the Oktoberfest.
After dinner we had some time to kill, so we walked across the street to H&M where I proceeded to look at everything - mostly because I have an amazing husband who doesn't mind. He just wishes he could buy me the whole store. Then, our best and most favorite NY tradition -- we stopped in Jamba Juice for smoothies before we went to catch our bus back home. The guy at the bus station laughed at us for drinking smoothies when it was 40-degrees outside, but we explained that we don't have Jamba Juice at home and he totally understood.
Alright, are you tired of hearing about New York?? But you're not yet ready for my blog post to be over?? Then I'll tell you something else exciting. This week I ordered new glasses!!! It has been years and years (so many that I can't remember) since I've gotten new glasses. Mine are so old I can't drive in them. So I was really excited for my eye exam - which I failed because I'm blind. The doctor couldn't get my vision to 20/20 :o( but the new glasses are really cute. I couldn't find their picture online, but I'll post one when I get them. Naturally, I searched through dozens of frames from the largest selection in Howard County only feeling luke warm about a few. As soon as the helper girl walks over she looks at my face, at a few pairs I'd been looking at, and pulls the perfect pair off the rack. I hadn't even seen them! It was like magic.
Ok, well that's sufficient I think for now. Thanks as always for continuing to read :o) I hope I'll be back soon!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

27 Things I Love About My Joshua

If you're like me and can't get enough of Josh, you'll love this post!! I borrowed the idea from the very clever Laura Cooke. In honor of Josh on his 27th birthday, here are a mere 27 of the zillions of things I love about him.

  1. He picked ME.
  2. He loves me more than just about anyone. Ever.
  3. He spoils me silly.
  4. He sings in the car and makes the songs about me, regardless of the actual song that's on.
  5. He is so talented and I love to listen to him play music.
  6. He is still very much a little kid at age 27.
  7. He is going to be the best dad I can ever imagine.
  8. He gets excited over anything that will make me smile (even just a tiny bit).
  9. He randomly gives me ILYs.
  10. He is uncommonly good looking.
  11. He believes deeply in good and evil.
  12. He writes me songs.
  13. We have just about everything in common.
  14. He likes to help me with anything from cleaning to grading papers.
  15. He is so frickin excited to see me in the morning... yes, after sleeping beside me.
  16. His resting body temperature is about 106 degrees, so I'm always warm when I'm with him.
  17. He is a very clean boy.
  18. He thinks I look amazing at all times and will tell me so.
  19. He is too cute for words.
  20. I'm his lobster.
  21. He is the best one of the best ones, which makes me the luckiest.
  22. He has a great sense of humor, and knows how to clean it up in front of ladies.
  23. My family loves him almost as much as they love me.
  24. He loves my family.
  25. He is the most thoughtful person I have ever met.
  26. He's everything I want, and everything I'm not.
  27. He is from God - otherwise we couldn't be so perfect for each other.

Awwwwww, wasn't that fun? It is also Jenna's birthday. And Jenna, it's not that I love you any less than I love my husband... but he's going to be home any minute and I don't have time to write 22 things I love about you before he gets here! I have to catch him at the door and make him close his eyes so he doesn't see his present sitting in the middle of the room. Wish me luck!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

It's That Time

I'm not saying I was ready, but I can admit that it's time. I know it's fall. The trees and bushes are all trying very subtly to change colors. The mornings are cold and dark. So I put away my adorable hydrangeas that usually sit on this little table in our entry-way and pulled out the fall arrangement. In the back sitting on one of the steps you can see a piece that I made myself out of a clear picture frame and some fake leaves. I put it up today too. So I don't get terribly excited about fall in general. To me it just signals that extreme cold is on it's way and that depresses me. However, there are some fun things to look forward to.

The first big fun of fall is Josh's birthday! It's coming up on Tuesday and I absolutely can't wait. I was going to try to throw a party for him, whatever he wanted. But it turned out that he never said what he wanted or who he wanted to be there. So I let it go. Don't worry- there will be celebrating. Sunday we're having dinner at my mom's and doing special birthday stuff for Josh and Jenna since they have the same birthday. Then on Tuesday of course I will unfold my very special birthday plans for him. I of course will tell you about that later. Don't worry, it isn't dirty :o) We'll probably also go to his parents' house that night for dinner.

After Josh's birthday, it's really almost Thanksgiving. We have 2 days off school the first week of November (professional day for the end of the quarter and election day). Then after two full weeks it's Thanksgiving. Who doesn't love Thanksgiving? I think this year Josh's parents may be going out of town which means we only have to go to ONE house! That would be exciting.

And everyone knows that after Thanksgiving, it IS Christmas. I love the Christmas season. This year we have two full weeks off for Christmas and New Years because they fall on Thursdays and the eves are Wednesdays. It's beautiful and I'm looking forward to it. I think we're also going to do another sleepover with the kids at some point over that break. We really had a ton of fun with them and talked right away about when we could do it again.

Speaking of which... I added some more of the pictures from that weekend. These are from the picnic Josh's dad's work has every other year. As I mentioned last time, the kids had a great time and so did we. Have a look:

Lacy making sand art. It turned out awesome, by the way.

Josh looking stylish with my purse while I made a tie-dyed shirt :o)

Leo, mid-jump, in the Moonbounce - his favorite activity of the day.

The mansion where all this takes place
Lacy making her tie-dyed t-shirt

Leo enjoying his "special" drink - a Shirley Temple instead of Coke that he asked for!

I'm sure you're wondering how I managed a blog post on a random Thursday night. It turns out there was no school today due to a Jewish holiday. Therefore I got up at a leisurely hour this morning, went shopping for fun, and got my school work done in the afternoon all before making a fabulous dinner for my husband when he got home. I could use this kind of day every day.

And finally, some fun and exciting news.... Josh got a new job this week! He's working for the same company, really just across the hall from where he is now. But instead of being a recruiter for the company, he is now a staffing coordinator on one of the company's contracts. It's a lateral move but it has considerably more potential than the HR office. We're both so excited and looking forward to getting things underway with that.

Hopefully I'll be able to post again this weekend. We have some fun things going on!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Hanging in there...

Wow. I can't really believe it's the next weekend already. This busy schedule of mine has really made the weeks go by quickly. Not that some of them don't feel long by Friday afternoon, but it seems like in social life they pass by like the wind.

I do have some more pictures from last weekend. We went to that fun picnic on Sunday. The weather was pretty and there was TONS there for kids to do. We had a great time. Lacy and I made bead necklaces, sand art, and tie-dyed shirts. There was also a moon bounce, various flavors of sugar to make oversized pixie-sticks, face-painting, temporary tattoos and let's not forget tons of food. Both kids were asleep within 10 minutes of getting in the car. I have pictures from that day but it's too late to start loading them. Sorry. I might try later.

This past week I was off work on Tuesday which was nice. Josh took off with me which made it even better. We slept in, had a delicious breakfast together, and then did some of the little things around the house we'd been wanting to do. The new Ben Folds CD came out so Josh picked that up early as well as the movie Iron Man (also released that day). We listened to Ben Folds while we worked around the house, and then watched Iron Man that night after dinner. It was such a treat to have a random day off work during the week. Strangely though, by Friday, Monday felt like it had been 2 weeks ago. I couldn't tell if the day off helped the week, or made it feel longer. This week we're off on Thursday for another Jewish holiday. I think it will be better to get Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday over with and then just have to come back for Friday. It will be a busy week nonetheless.

Today was Ben and Jenna's engagement party. That was also a lot of fun. I made pumpkin cheesecake and crab dip. For some reason I always get adventurous and try out new recipes when I'm making something for a party. It's not the best idea. Both things turned out fine, but really what am I thinking? What if I had totally done something wrong or the recipe was just not very good?? I actually didn't really like my crab dip. I'm used to creamy and cheesy crab dip. This was like crab meat that had soaked up some flavorful liquid. It tasted fine, but it didn't have the same consistency I'm used to. It was a Paula Deen recipe from Food Network. I wouldn't make it again. Otherwise the party was great. Everyone met and mingled. They had a box for people to write down a memory of one or both of them and then see if they could guess who wrote it. That was hilarious because Amberly and I shared a lot of childhood memories that were funny. Some that his groomsmen shared came as a bit of a shock to my mom, but overally she took it pretty well.

Tomorrow will be a busy day of lesson plans and writing a paper for my Monday night class (Counciling the Early Adolescent). It's just a "scholarly review" but I have a feeling it's going to annoy me and end up taking up all of my time. It might warrant a trip to Cold Stone, I can't say for sure.