25 December 2007

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas...

YAY!!!!!!!!!! A day o' rest! A day o' rest! I attempted to tell Addy that we could sleep in this morning...and she did--at least until 5:30am...I argued with her until about 6:15 and finally gave up and kicked her outside. Oh well, I did get a few more hours of sleep!

After pancakes and opening of gifts, I perused the telly for some great b&w Christmas movies. NONE. what the????

So I watched a bit of A Christmas Story (I watched it twice last night!), then flipped over to ESPN. WHAT? NO FOOTBALL EITHER???? double what the??

So let's recap: NO snow, NO black and white classic Christmas movies, and NO football...sigh...so, I did what anyone would do in my situation: took a nap!!

Woke up, splurged on lunch and made Dorito Gook (a mexican casserole family favorite for those of you who've never had the pleasure!). Did a bit of playing around on the computer--sent out a few text messages, talk to several of you on the phone...and then did what anyone in my situation would do: took another nap. Had I thought for 1/2 a second that I could have actually slept until I needed to get up, I would have attempted it. But for fear of being wide awake at midnight, made myself get up and took Addy for a walk. Talked to a few more people on the phone, sent a few more text messages, and after I submit a couple of entries on my blogs, I'm calling it a day and going to bed!

Probably not the most exciting Christmas ever, but it allowed me a day of rest, which is EXACTLY what I asked Santa for this year! I guess that means that I made The Good List!

So what did Santa bring you? Anything fun and exciting? I hope so. Here's wishing you and your family a wonderful holiday season and a Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas!

24 December 2007

Rockefeller Plaza

Since it is Christmas Eve and since I have no real Christmas plans and since I now LIVE in New York City, I can go see the ROCKEFELLER tree!! So after work, I ventured up to Rockefeller Plaza, fought my way through the masses waiting to see the Rockettes and those attempting to venture to the famous tree. I rounded the corner (walking AROUND a family whose children kept stopping to look in various store windows) and there it was....ahhh, there in it's beautiful masiveness....although very different than what I was expecting. For some reason, I thought it'd be decorated with more than just lights. But it was still magnificent to say the very least!

I walked around to the other side of the plaza to the ice skating rink. It was rather intoxicatingly holidayish to watch the skaters with the fountain and tree in the back ground with the red and green decorations all around....beautiful and I'm sooo happy to have gone to see it on Christmas Eve!

On the way home, while waiting for the bus--who did I see? Santa!! Who--with his present sack in tow--was waiting for a bus or a ride of some sort, apparently, to pick up his sleigh which was being serviced right here in Staten Island!! The best part was all of the traffic who would stop and greet him as they were driving by....it was great!!
The only hitch in the whole day is the lack of snow....phooey! I just knew I was going to get a white Christmas! Sigh...I guess there's always next year!!
Happy Holidays!

02 December 2007

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow...

Today is Sunday...my one and only complete day off of work and school. Having closed last night [leaving at 11:15pm, catching the 12:30am ferry, and getting home just after 1am], am hoping for a bit of a sleep in....of course Addy had other plans. She did let me sleep "in" until 7am. Annoyed with only about 5 hours of sleep, I get up to kick her outside when what do my eyes see??? BIG WHITE FLUFFY flakes falling from the sky. IT'S SNOWING IT'S SNOWING IT'S SNOWING! okay, so the urge to go back to sleep is gone, I start the coffee and sit and watch the snow falling for a few hours...and it turns out Addy LOVES snow! She was running around, frolicking, rolling around it in--for about 10 minutes and then wanted in...[of course!]

After it had stopped snowing, I dug out the snow shovel and went to work on the front sidewalk for all the people trying to get to the bus stop....Addy, excited by the prospect of fresh--i.e. not played in--snow in the front yard was happy to hang out for about 30 minutes, while I cleared a path for the pedestrians, having to be called into the house when I was done--with snow stuck to her nose and top of her head [damn not having the camera handy--it was pretty darn cute, even if I do say so myself!]

After a brief trek to the grocery store, decided it was too treacherous to drag all my laundry up the hill and instead opted for spending the rest of the day curled up on the couch, drinking hot chocolate, snuggling with Addy, trying to catch up on a bit of homework, and watching some football. What a great day off!!


19 November 2007

That's Ms. Barista to you!

Yay!! I got the job, I got the job!!

So I've spent the last week training [rather hurriedly because they're trying to get everyone's training completed by Black Friday]. I had 2 days of Borders training, a couple of days on the registers, and then yesterday started barista training--the best part, getting to taste all of the coffees and baked goodies....yum-o! If you're anywhere near a Seattle's Best coffee shop and they have cinnamon scones, you MUST get one!! Fantabulous!! Tomorrow we start with the espresso drinks [and of course more tasting]...a "trial" run on Wednesday, a break on Thursday [gobble-gobble], and then the insanity hits!

Of course, all my managers assure me it's not as crazy as let's say Macy's, but still...we're a block away--there's got to be some overflow!!

So here's hoping you have a festive and happy Thanksgiving. Me, I'll be lounging on the couch with the pupcicle, watching the parade, a bit of footy, catching up on homework and perhaps digging out the Christmas decorations!

Let the holidays begin!

14 November 2007

Are You Ready for the Big Parade?

What a fabulous question!! It was asked by the granddaughter of the people I have been working for [my temp job that was supposed to end in October, but they looooved me so much they asked me to stay on--and it provides me a bit of extra spending cash, you know, for frivolous things such as groceries and dog food]. Anyway, their grandchildren are visiting and are sooooo excited because the city workers are starting to set up benches for the Big Parade, according to Miss Lauren, The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade for the rest of us! Their apartment overlooks Central Park--so they get to enjoy the parade from the coziness of their apartment. Nice: I think it's my favorite part of the city. It's a bit quieter than the Upper East side and a whole lot less crazy than SoHo, Chelsea, Greenwich, etc...

So back to the discussion at hand--Thanksgiving. In reality, I'll probably be working at Borders [not complaining--it's short day and we get time and half], but I'm also not opposed to lounging on the couch with the pupcicle, watching the parade and then footy--sounds like heaven to me!! :) [of course, truth be told, I'll probably be sitting on the couch working on one of my 4 papers due within the next few weeks...] That won't stop me from having a bit o' turkey and sides--though, on a much smaller scale. Any big plans for you this Turkey Day?


03 November 2007

Fingers Crossed!

Well this past week, I had job interviews [3 total] at Borders and they seemed fairly interested in me, they're checking my references over the next couple of days [so if you get a call--lie and be nice and tell them how fabulous I am!] and in theory will let me know something soon...

Of course, it'll just be enough hours to pay the basics, so I'm still accepting donations to the Sherry & Addy Go To NYC and Become Poor Grad Student & Devoted Doggie Fund [which I've noticed is embarrassingly low--not suggesting anything, just merely commenting *cheeky grin*] I'm still trying to decide if this is the route to go [more hours, more stable, less hard work] or go back to waitressing [more late hours, but better $$/hour] decisions, decisions. It would be so much better if I could find a job with the work load of Borders and the hourly pay of waitressing at an upscale joint. But I guess I should just shut it, as that's what most of us want!

On a bleh note, I'm sick, not bad, just a cold with really bad sinus pain and pressure and I've lost my voice--well, it's really scratchy and hurts when I talk. It's a chilly [mid 40'sF] and overcast/rainy weekend, so staying in bed [okay wrapped in blankies on the couch], snuggling with the pupcicle isn't such a bad thing...


30 October 2007

oh yeah....

I know you're just sitting at the edge of your seat wondering what's up with the hair. Well, I succumbed and went back to have a few more inches cut off. I like it :) and I gotten LOTS of comments on it [both here and at home]. Do I have pictures of it yet? nope....but in case you're wondering, I cut off between 9-10 inches. Did I donate it? No, alas my hair is undonatable due my fondness for constantly changing it's color, which incidently is a dark, rich brown--which doesn't seem all that different to me--but also yielded lots of compliments. who knew?

21 October 2007

The Morning After....

Okay, I hate my hair. I know, I know--yesterday I thought it was fabulous. I'm sure tomorrow I'll go back to liking it again [I hope].

That's it--that's all I have to report--just stayed at home, lounging with the dog, watching football [how 'bout them Cowboys??], and studying....lazy Sunday stuff.


20 October 2007

Doh....I Lost the Bread!

What an afternoon I had today. The mall is one the other side of the island, which has lots of shops, but more importantly to me this afternoon was a nice big supermarket. Along the way--having been sick AND tired of my hair--I gave in and stopped for a haircut. A trim, really. About 6 inches and an hour later, I emerge looking FABULOUS, even if I do say so myself! She asked if she could cut a bit more than just a trim and I said sure as long as it looks good and isn't supershort, I'm fine. I'm not sure that anyone's told her that before, because periodically she'd ask again [which by that point it was too late if I would have wanted to recind my statement!], so happily cutting more and more and more and flinging hair everywhere until voila! the finished product. It now sits just above my shoulder--with lots of layers. I have no doubt the first time I wash my hair, I'll forget nearly 2/3 of my hair is gone and spend 45 minutes rinsing out shampoo!! Alright--not to be deterred, as the fridge and pantry were shockingly bare--I head over to the supermarket, where they were having all sorts of sales on great items to stock the pantry and freezer [I refrained from buying too many perishables with the exception of fresh fruits and veggies]. Of course, then I realize I have to schlep all this back to the house via the bus. So looking like a packmule, I head from store to bus, get on bus--which is 20 minutes late. Because it's late, it's packed and me and alllllllllllllllllll my groceries squeeze into one seat [okay maybe 1 and 1/3] and then unfolding and repositioning everything to get off the bus was quite humorous. Unfortunately, the bread didn't fair so well, as at one point the bus swerved and the bread fell as did the diet coke--on top of the bread. Anyone know how to unsmoosh bread? tragic really....

so that was my big day out. now i'm home, making some soup, hanging with the pupcicle...contemplating studying.


PS--the only thing more funny than me trying to be a packmule and get off the bus in an efficient manner was me trying to inconspicuously take a picture of the new cut while walking to get a coffee at starbucks...I'm sure the people I passed thought I was nuts. Oh well, welcome to NYC!

PPS--okay, blogger's being difficult and not letting me download my pic at the moment [and after I made such an idiot of myself!]...you can see it on my facebook thumbnail [scroll down, it's in the side column!]

'Bout Time....

okay, so i'm just now posting pics of the house--better late then never! :)

So, here's the living room and kitchen, which are downstairs. Then head up the stairs [which Addy LOVES] to the loft bedroom and bathroom. Never fear--there's also a 1/2 bath downstairs, so when you visit, you're not having to climb the stairs just for potty breaks!!

While loving adventure, my sweet baby girl is very happy to have her furniture back at her comfort [what a rough life she leads!] :ISHEZ

19 October 2007

Look Momma--Look What I Got!!

What a wonderful [NOT] surprise Addy had waiting for me this morning, when I got up—45 minutes late. A mouse. A dead mouse. Laying on my sleeping bag, which Addy of late had confiscated for her own.
Lemme start from the beginning…a couple of nights ago. It was a cold and stormy night [okay, well maybe not stormy, but the temp was about 45F], I’m sitting in bed, sipping my tea, watching a movie, when something caught my eye—scurrying across the floor. EEEEEuuuuwww…I HATE MICE. Can’t stand the disgusting little buggars, regardless of how cute and helpful Cinderella makes them seem. Great, just one more thing to think about during the insanity of trying to find a job, midterms, and figuring out where to put everything that I’m unpacking. I’m sure he was just seeking refuge from the cold. Don’t care. My house. My rules. No rodents. Promising myself I’d look into solutions the next day, I went to sleep. Well, next day came and panic set in about 2 upcoming midterms and 2 papers—all due/occurring over the next two weeks. So little furry guest was forgot about…until last night. In fact, since nothing was seen or heard from him again, starting thinking perhaps it was just a dream.
Until last night….I awoke at some ungodly hour to my dog playing and jumping around. Not really thinking anything of it, I fussed at her to lay down, which she did [although—in hindsight THANKFULLY—not on the bed!]. So later I, awoke, not to the sound of my alarm, but suddenly and quickly [you know, that feeling you have when you wake up and KNOW that you’ve overslept]. I jump out of bed and am heading for the shower without glasses when I noticed something on the sleeping bag [aside from the dog], I bend down for a closer look, about to grab it when my brain registers that it’s a dead mouse. I jump back with a little scream, which apparently Addy mistook for playing so she jumps up, picks up the mouse [like she does her toys] and flings it across the room, chases it and picks it up and brings it to me [at which point if she has a TOY we play tug-of-war], but I AM NOT playing tug-of-war with a RODENT, with its dead tail hanging haphazardly out of my dog’s mouth. I’m screaming at her to drop it. Heartbroken and confused why Momma’s not excited about her new toy, Addy drops it and sinks to the floor pouting…
Damn dog. But good dog for taking care of the mouse. You know Samson used to act more like a dog than a cat, well apparently I now have a dog who loves to hunt mice. Fine by me, because the real question is how many more are illegally housing themselves in my humble abode…
PS—I guess it’s a lot better than finding a 7 foot python in your toilet, like the lady in Brooklyn did last week [upon finding it, as she was going to the bathroom in the middle of the night, she slammed the lid down and tried to flush it….needless to say—but saying it anyway—it didn’t help.] Both plumbers and firefighters were called in to remove the snake…

12 October 2007


Yay! Today TimeWarner is coming to install cable/internet/phone [what? I got a really good deal--at least for the first year!]. I have been informed that they will be here sometime between 8am and 12pm. Now, I know that there is NO WAY they will be arriving by 8am, unless I oversleep, sleep in, etc--in which case, they'll be knocking on the door at 7:55am. Hindsight being 20/20, I should have tried this approach....as they rock up about 9:45am [not bad, I didn't expect to see them until 11:50], but about 5 [I KID YOU NOT] minutes AFTER the electricity went out! WHAT THE??????? Since I just moved in, there's no way the bill is late :)- I look outside--the whole block [traffic lights included] is dark. Great. I don't know a lot about installing cable, but I have an inkling that electricity might be helpful. Turns out my inkling was right. I have to say that the cable guy was wonderful and hung around for about 30-40 minutes hoping that the electricity would come on any minute... A 10 minute conversation with the Electric Company resulted that they were unsure of why the electricity was out and that as soon as they could possibly get a tech out, they would have someone out to figure out what's going on. Here's what's going on: THE ELECTRICITY IS OUT. FIX IT BEFORE MY CABLE GUY HAS TO LEAVE. She didn't seem excited about my suggestion [even though I said it nicely]. Since we had no idea about the time frame for the outage, the cable guy had no choice but to leave...and of course, the next available time to schedule service is next Friday. HA HA HA. I laugh because well, I try not to cry in front of complete strangers. ANOTHER week. sigh. gotta love technology. I feel like complaining to Electric Company for subway/bus passes for the days that I have to go to school to do work on non-class days, but I know that it'll just be a waste of minutes on my cell phone.

You'll be happy to know that as I'm boarding the ferry to go into school, the Electric Company called to say that service was back on and they hoped that I wasn't too inconvienced by the power outage. It took EVERY OUNCE of ENERGY that I had NOT to toss my phone in the harbour :)


11 October 2007

Midterms Are Coming! Midterms Are Coming!

Ahhhh….I forgot how not fun tests are. Okay, I forgot how not fun BIOSTATS tests were. Bleh. You know, it seems relatively simple when we’re in class or recitation and it’s being explained, but get me in the test, take away my books, and I freeze faster than your tongue on a frozen pole [think A Christmas Story]. Actually, overall I think the test was okay…but conditional probability KILLS me every time! I dunno what it is, but I was making good time, doing great [at least I thought so], feeling confident and THEN conditional probability hits. I continue on…leaving that problem ‘til last…but the next problem—conditional probability. Grrrr….alright fine. Work out all the easy parts and then struggle through the last two, writing as much information as I possibly can….hoping perhaps something sticks [or the Prof has pity on my poor confused soul and gives at least a couple of points for effort!] So fingers crossed, I get results back on Monday—when we can go over the test in recitation [joy!]
Luckily afterward, I met Tom & Carol [yes, that would be wineshop Tom & Carol] who are up here on a vacation and touring around and today they had a free day and since I was in class [and there’s no way to skip on test day] decided to meet for dinner. The first thing that I did was order a beer. Tom & Carol concurred that after biostats I needed one! Dinner was great and catching up with Tom & Carol even better [Tom’s opening a new store in San Antonio, saw pics of the grandkids, etc]!!
Alright must go—had to put unpacking on hold except for during study breaks—so that’s on the agenda…at least until next week and the next midterm!


PS--Happy Birthday to everyone having a birthday within the last/upcoming week: Auntie P, Matthew, Landri, Woody, Kerry, Ange, and anyone else I may have forgotten--I'm blaming midterms & moving!

06 October 2007

Movin' On Up...

Well, technically down…YAY! Movers have unloaded. It was so worth the cost to have them take my dressers and bed upstairs. Since most of my stuff has been in storage since May, it’s like Christmas going through all these boxes. The nice thing is that I have lots of room to put everything [well, except the kitchen, where cabinet space is a bit limited]….now I just have to unpack, unpack, unpack…and watch a little football!!


The Cruell Irony of It All...

We are moved. And I’m using the term moved very, very loosely , because well, Addy & I are here, and the furniture is still in storage, with an eta of Saturday afternoon. Yes, today is Friday. Mover issues. I think by now, I could write a whole book on moving to NYC [chapter 1, bring lots of money. Chapter 2, plan for NOTHING to go as you planned. Chapter 3, have back up money. Chapter 4, travelling by taxi with dog. Chapter 5, rummage through old coats, jackets, and jeans looking for spare money]
Ahem. Sorry to digress. Anyway, checking out of hotel TODAY, refusing to pay for another night as I just handed over an INSANE amount of money for a deposit and ONE month of rent [incidentally, these checks when combined equal nearly 5 months of rent that I was paying in Fredericksburg]. In theory, meeting movers at storage and then catching a ride to house. In reality, movers were overbooked. No worries, rent a car, stop by storage get some pillows and bedding paraphernalia, drive dog & me to new house to meet the nice gentleman who is going to turn on my gas and thus provide me heat & hot water. Thinking that with pillows and bedding paraphernalia I could “rough” it one night. HA HA HA HA. AHEM. In the state of New Jersey if you want to get a rental car using a debit card, you have to have a license issued in the states of NJ, NY, or PA regardless of the fact that you just moved here and since you were living in a hotel, getting a license with the address of the hotel seemed a bit, I don’t know—INSANE so you still have your TEXAS license. Although they were willing to accept it IF I could get the university to write a letter showing that I was in fact enrolled [because perhaps the student ID I showed them was fake!] AND a copy of the lease AND a bill with my name on it at the new address…all within 4 hours, as that was the check out time at hotel. So new plan: taxi and try not to shoot the nice people who work for a company with stupid rules. Not thrilled as it will cost more than rental car, but okay. We are now running late and must skip storage for pillows and bedding paraphernalia as gas man will be arriving at house in about 2 hours [and of course, if I am there—he’ll be late but if I’m not there—he’ll be on-time and leave and I’ll be without heat [which is fine right now] and hot water [which would suck right now!] for the weekend. Taxi ride was fun….it’s very interesting the industrialness of New Jersey as you drive south towards Newark and quite disgusting if you ask me—smog, smog, and more smog. OF COURSE Mr. Taxi Man had never been to Staten Island. I told him I’ve never been by car, so it’s an adventure for both of us! [He didn’t seem too sure of my enthusiasm]…and then we got lost. Not lost. Misplaced. Okay, we hit Victory [Street, Avenue, Road, Blvd, whatever] which, I believe, runs pretty much down the entire island and is the road we need to get to my house. So left or right? Neither of us are sure because the directions Mr. Taxi Man had actually spit us out on Staten Island at a different location—although I’m not sure how, as it’s an ISLAND and there are only a few way ON and OFF of it. But we [and by we, I mean he] decided to go right. After about 10 minutes, he pulls over to ask someone. It’s the OTHER direction….”all the way down”—Mr. Taxi Man looked at me “what kind of direction is that? All the way down?” So we chucked a u-ie and started all the way down Victory [Street, Road, Avenue, Blvd, whatever]. After about 15 minutes at a light Mr. Taxi Man asks someone else “just keep going, all the way down.” At this point it’s all I can do not to just laugh out loud. I mention that it’s an island so really how far could it be? Apparently still a ways down. We FINALLY arrive, just in enough time for Addy to give the place a sniff down and me to reassemble her kennel before the Nice Gas Guy gets there to turn on the gas and light my hot water heater and my furnace .
Now in hindsight, no 10X10 storage unit full of crap is a good thing for giving the place a thorough cleaning [after locating a grocery store to stock up on basics and cleaning supplies]. So here I sit in my uber-clean house that has electricity, heat, and hot water….but no furniture, cable, towels, or bedding. Being of girl scout mind, I made a make shift bed—using clothes and a blanket that I stole back from Addy. It was my blanket…before I stole Addy’s blanket to give to Stella because Addy drug Stella’s blanket outside through the mud and it needed to be cleaned and I wasn’t sending Stella to Granny’s without a blanket. Poor Addy. Once I got my “bed” made, she proceeded to lay on it and looked at me like “thanks Mom, but what about you?” Poor, poor Addy. She was not a happy girl, as she finally gets a house with a yard and all she wants is to curl up on her blankie and go to sleep and mean, mean Momma stole it! Hopefully just for one night. I’ve already made the decision that I don’t care if I have to personally lug all the boxes upstairs by myself because my time limit with the movers ran out, the FIRST thing they are doing once it’s unloaded is assembling my bed!


PS—nothing scares the crap out of you like spending the night in a new place—sleeping on a palette of clothes and a dog blanket, just about to fall asleep when you hear CRASH! What the??? Oh, just the freaking, fracking shower curtain rod fell. Oi. Oh well, you benefitted, as I’ve been typing this while waiting for my heart to resume back to a normal pace to re-attempt sleep on my clothes/dog blanket palette!

28 September 2007

Thank You For Ordering Your Pizza On-line....

yep. I did it. I ordered pizza on-line. I didn't set out to do this, I just merely wanted to get on-line to see my options [and more importantly now that I'm a poor grad student--the price!]

Lemme start from the beginning. Having housing somewhat secured [what?? I'm not counting my chickens until the lease is signed this weekend!] and not travelling anywhere this weekend, I decided to sleep in [a bit...Addy doesn't let me sleep too late], get some long-overdue reading for classes done and generally just hang out in the room with the pupcicle--with a few trips out for the necessities, like coffee and walking Addy and coffee. So as my tummy is rumbling, I notice yes, it is in fact about time for dinner and Wendy's and Dunkin' Doughnuts across the street just aren't sounding appetizing when [as I'm coming across the Yankees game on tv], I think pizza sounds nice and easy. Got out the phone book called the nearest pizza place. They're already closing...what??? it's only 8:30pm [apparently slow night], called the other one that delivers because that's the most appealling part right now, but they don't deliver "this far out" [like 4 miles]....so I resorted to one of the big guys--which allows me to check out the menu on-line and hello....order on-line! [which okay, we've all seen the ads on tv, but living in Fredericksburg that's really not an option--you're just excited to find any one willing to deliver--so I forgot about it...] I clicked just for the fun of it, thinking that perhaps it wouldn't be available to me "this far out," but ah-ha it was...AND there were coupons [sigh, I'm too easily amused]...so I picked out the size, the crust, the toppings....no wait, let's change it to these toppings, or better yet THESE toppings. this is fun! [and can you imgine dealing with a live person while changing all those toppings?] a few more clicks, apply the coupon, fill it my credit card number and viola! I get an email thanking me for my on-line order and letting me know that my pizza should be arriving in approximately 38-49 minutes.

Now, all I have to do is sit back, watch the game, and wait for my pizza without having to deal with being put on hold for so long you forgot what you were ordering. I love technology....even if 97% of the time, I can't figure out how the hell it works!!


25 September 2007

New Digs

Yay! I think I found a place to live!!

of course I still have to sign the lease--that happens this weekend--but here's the 411:

it's on Staten Island, so it's a bit of a commute, but not a bad one. It's a one bedroom HOUSE [for the same price as a studio in Manhattan] two story house--the upstairs has the bedroom, large closet, and bathroom. Downstairs is the living room, dining room, and kitchen. Small front and back yards, so I'll still have to walk Addy [but we both need the exercise!]...so that's about it in a nutshell. I'll get some pics to post when I go out this weekend. oh yeah, we move in next friday...so the countdown is on! YAY!

24 September 2007

Quick Trip

So I'm online looking for plane tickets to Texas for Kevin & Monique's wedding when ding! travelocity sent me a message that tickets to Louisville are on sale right now. I click just to check it out...thinking perhaps for Thanksgiving. Phooey, you have to travel before November. Hang on, Christi has a birthday coming up...so I call....Tracy. We decide that it should be a surprise. And what a surprise it was--she was COMPLETELY and TOTALLY shocked! It was sooo much fun. I think the best part was talking to her on the phone while walking in the terminal looking for Tracy and having her put me on hold because Tracy was calling....well, that and Christi gave me lots of clothes and rounded up all the stuff I had left this summer [so many, in fact, that I had to borrow a suitcase to get it all back!].

Since I arrived back in NYC at 9pm, I opted for the shuttle bus back to Port Authority to catch a NJ bus back to the hotel [or actually the hotel next to the one I was staying in, as it was booked this week--jury's still out if we'll stay in this one or move back on Friday] rather than carting my two suitcases and two carry-ons through Queens at night. So I'm waiting on the bus platform at P.A. with my two suitcases and two carry-ons when apparently I caught the eye of the bus driver. He asked if I would mind putting my bags under the bus [no because I certainly did NOT want to lug them up onto the bus with me]. He asked where I was going and I told him the name of the hotel [which is about a block from the nearest bus stop]...he informs me that he will--instead of dropping me off at the bus stop--drop me off in front of my hotel. How sweet is that?!? And he did...in fact, at the bus stop he turned to me and reminded me to NOT get off the bus, that he was dropping me off at the hotel. Chivalry is not dead...even in metro NYC. :P


11 September 2007

Ground Zero

It seems an eternity ago when terrorists flew planes into the buildings of the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington DC and when many brave people took back one plane and crashed it in Pennsylvannia rather than letting it reach it's destination.

I was living in Australia at the time. It seemed so surreal watching what was happening to MY country and MY home from far, far away. We were told NOT to go to the Embassey, NOT to go anywhere near the Embassey or Consulates. That's something that hit me like a slap in the face. Ever since I'd turned 18 and got on a plane to Holland--the first rule of international travel [beaten into my head] was if you're in trouble or feel threatened or need help, find the nearest Embassey or Consulate and go there. I was fortunate, I had some really good friends who stood beside me and held my hand when I cried for my country and refused to let me stay by myself for the first week. I had complete strangers who upon hearing my yankee accent, would hug me, and tell me that their thoughts and prayers are with me and my family and my countrymen. Six years ago feels like a blur. Six years ago feels like an eternity...but today it came crashing back to reality, back to the here and now.

Six years later and now I'm living in New York City. I got a call from Christi this morning asking if I was going down to Ground Zero. Truthfully I hadn't given it much thought, but she asked me if I would go and I told her I would try. On the bus ride into the city, I decided that needed to be my first stop today. After all, shouldn't I pay my respects for all the men & women who so needlessly lost their lives? Pay homage to all the police and firefighters, who work to keep me safe, whose partners and friends willingly sacrificed themselves so that others could be saved. So rather than heading north on the subway, I headed south. I got out at the stop closest to St. Paul's Cathedral and as I'm walking up the stairs, I hear Taps being played. I swallow hard, fighting back tears. I wind my way down past the Cathedral and cemetary to the street behind it and site of Ground Zero. A fence blocks the view, as the site is under contruction to become a memorial for those who were affected by the events of 09/11/01. All along the fence were flowers, gifts, letters. and people. People crying, people praying, people talking, laughing, remembering. And then there was this boy. He couldn't have been more than 13 or 14, clinging to the fence, sobbing. Not quietly, not calmly---big, fat, ugly, heaving sobs. As I watch him, I realize that he would have only been 7 or 8 when this tragedy struck, robbing him of a long life with the person--or perhaps persons--he was crying for today. A wave of selfish relief flooded me that I was not affected by this as he and thousands of others were. I was fortunate that my close family and friends were not harmed here. I was one of the lucky ones. I soon found myself sitting in a pew at St. Paul's, searching for answers--answers that had been asked many, many times before--but knowing the answers would never be enough, I just ended with a pleading to all Higher Beings to watch over this boy and let him one day know peace in his heart for his loved ones.

I think that through the hurt, today should be about celebration. Celebrating those you love and those you have loved, even if they may not be with you anymore. When you think about it, doesn't it all come down to love--the only true foe to hatred and ignorance? It's the one thing that endures to gives us strength, to keep us going and to make it all worthwhile. Love for ourselves, love for our family and friends, love for our world. Mourn today for those who have lost, but celebrate today because you are loved...and know that my world is a better place because I was lucky enough to have met you.


08 September 2007

Registration....the Funnest Time of All!


So I've been patiently waiting for my hold to clear from health services and after spending about an hour on hold find out that my Rubella titre has come back negative...which means that I need a Rubella booster before they release my hold. OKAY fine. But the nurse has pity on me [I'm thinking they're just exceptionally busy] and releases my hold temporarily, providing I can get in before registration ends (14th) to get my booster.

YAY! Am now free to start the wonderfully time consuming process known as registration. Now with my program there are 2 main core classes that have to be taken before you can take pretty much any other class in the department. And of course, there is only one class of each being offered this semester. So I register for one [Introduction to Biostatistics....fun times, fun times!]...yay. one down, one to...whaddayamean it's full? ARE YOU FREAKIN' KIDDING ME?!?!?!? Apparently 350 students beat me to the punch, as well, no other epidemiology classes can be taken without this ONE class, which they are teaching only ONCE this semester [and then not again until next year]. GREAT. NOW WHAT?? I did what any other desperate-not-to-idle-for-one-full-year-paying-Ivy-League-tuition-grad-student would do. I emailed the professor and begged and pleaded my case. Return email from Professor: I appreciate your situation, but I already have 350 students. Talk to the head of the department, if she allows you in, then that's fine with me. So then forwarded begging, pleading email...along with more begging and pleading to head of dept. [Lilliane]....who is a wonderfully kind and benevolent person, who is allowing me [and having to register me specially] to take this class. YAY!!

So, currently am enrolled in:
Introduction to Biostatistics
Introduction to Global Health
Principles of Epidemiology I

but of course, nothing can be as simple as that. IN ORDER to keep all my funding, I have to maintain full-time status, which means I have to add another class. Did a bit of reading up and it's suggested that non-medical, non-biology, non-chemistry students should take a few refresher courses such as Anatomy/Physiology and Molecular Biology. Since A&P isn't offered this semester, I opt for MB. And since I'm not in the biology dept, I have to write professor for permission. Granted. But now, because I'm not in the biology dept, I CANNOT register for it via the internet or phone [which is how one normally registers]....so now I have to email Lilliane again pleading for more help, and it's a bit more tricky as the class I have to register for F4201 is for grad students, which is offered the same time as the covetted Principles of Epidemiology I [class I was granted special permission to attend]. However, lectures for F4201--Molecular Biology--are the exact same as C2005 [for undergrads] and professor doesn't care WHICH lecture set you attend, just as long as you a) attend and b) show up for your appointed exam times [which will NOT be at the same time as covetted Principles of Epidemiology]. Still waiting to hear back about that...fingers crossed!

Clear are mud? You should be in my shoes!


01 September 2007

You know you're in New York when....

You're on a crowded subway platform and the main form of entertainment for EVERYONE is watching a rat running around on the tracks....and then having everyone LEAN over the platform to see where the rat ran because it's no longer in view...

still apartment hunting [bleh!]...actually submitted an application for one that's not too far from school and available as soon as my application is approved. hmmm. this f%$^$^ sucks. I mean--fingers crossed!


PS--apparently my comment in a previous post about the lovely smell at 168th street subway stop is very dependent on when you're there, as I've noticed it's not sooo pronounced when it's not raining outside!!

26 August 2007

Did you know...?

I learned a few things on this trip [yes, shocking but true] and I thought I would spread my wisdom. So here are some things [in random order] that I learned while travelling in a Tahoe with a uhaul with my Mother and with My Addy, who was in her kennel in the back surrounded by wine, beer, and all the crap I felt I needed but wouldn't fit in the uhaul.

1. The Holland Tunnel from NJ into NYC does not allow trailers--and that includes uhaul trailers, even when they meet size requirements.
2. There is a uturn around the police station just past the toll booth for all the ignorant people who are not aware of rule #1.
3. People in the NYC/NJ metro area LOVE honking their horns, especially when you are blocking the toll booth with your Tahoe with the uhaul trailer with your Mother navigating and your Addy in her kennel in the back surrounded by wine, beer, and all the crap I felt I needed but wouldn't fit in the uhaul. Oh and it cost us $11.90 in tolls to find this out.
4. There are very few things in life scarier than driving down a mountain on a windy interstate road, surrounded by truckers on one side [whose trailers are causing the wind to whip your trailer violently from side to side] while on your other side is solid concrete dividers from all the construction.
5. Even scarier than #4 is attempting to do this in the dark.
6. Okay even scarier still is attempting #4 & 5 in the rain.
7. If you're eating in Virginia and you like rare or medium rare steak, you should ask them to gently pass it by the flames of the grill. If not, you're going to get a well-done piece of meat.
8. People up here are scared of big dogs and rather than asking if she's friendly, they just ask if she bites [while gesturing as if to bite their own arm]. Needless to say [but I'm saying it anyway] we usually get the elevator to ourselves.
9. A taxi ride from the Days Inn in North Bergen, NJ to the heart of the Bronx will cost you $71 [but in allllll fairness, $7 of that is for tolls]
10. Attempting to navigate my way out of that part of the Bronx and back to a part of the city I knew sans $71 taxi ride, took nearly 2 hours of walking/finding the bus/riding the bus/transferring to and then riding the subway and in hindsight, probably the $71 just may have been worth it.
11. Unless you love the smell of urine, don't get off of the #1 subway at 168th Street.

That's all I have for now! Apartment hunting is kicking my ass, but I am determined [of course, feel free to keep your fingers crossed for me!]!!


22 August 2007

Good-bye Dear Friend

This post is dedicated to my dear sweet little rat-dog, Ginger.

Ginger led a wonderfully spoiled and very loved life until last Sunday.

I have no doubt where ever her spirit is, she is running around green fields chasing butterflies, keeping an eye out for someone to pet her.

Because she was so loved, she will be so missed.

Good bye Ginger, I love you.
Momma Sherry

21 August 2007

Thank you Eugene!

And of course Gretchen who drove allllll the way in from Austin to help oversee the packing of the uhaul [which was done MOSTLY by Eugene, David, & Becca].

Little did Eugene & Becca know when they left Amarillo early Friday morning, they would get into Fredericksburg just in time to help me load the rest of the stuff in storage, take it out to Mom's, and then repack EVERYTHING in the uhaul. Okay, well almost everything. Mom fixed us all dinner, or the last supper, as I like to call it :) and it was nice just sitting around with everyone one last time.

Soon B&E were off to Austin--no kids, hotel room--WOO HOO! :) ahem, sorry....with David off not too far behind them. Gretchen stayed the night with a promise to leave when we did eeearly in the morning.

We got up eeearly in the morning, but in an effort to NOT come back to a disorganized house, Mom spent a little extra time cleaning everything, so we got off a bit later than we would have liked [okay 58 minutes to be exact!] with Gretchen giggling most of the time about Mom & I killing each other on the trip.

We had a few stops to make in Fredericksburg, but soon we were on our way....in the Tahoe....with the uhaul....and Addy snoozing in her new kennel in the back, surrounded by wine, beer, and all the other crap I felt I neeeeeeeded but couldn't fit in the uhaul [just going to reitterate that if you need lots 'o crap packed in a tiny space, Eugene is your man!!]

Did I mention at this point my apt fell through? Well, it did, but having no choice and hopefully better luck once I got there, we plugged on....through Texas....through Arkansas...through Tennessee...through Virginia....West Virginia....Pennsylvania...New Jersey....and finally New York--kinda.

20 August 2007

I was right [and I hate it when that happens]!!

Dean graciously offered to lend me his covered little trailer and I tried telling him & Mom that all the crap I wanted to take was NOT going to fit into his covered trailer. But it was free, so I figured what the hell. After 1.5 hours of rearranging furniture [in the rain] Mom finally conceded and let me go rent a larger uhaul :)

I resisted in saying "I told you so!" nor did I point out that even though the uhaul was twice as big as Dean's trailer, I still left a few [albeit non-essential] things behing.

I like occassionally taking the high road!


08 August 2007

Happy Birthday Bubba!

Poor Bubba is on-call at work, which with all the storms we've been having means that he's out on calls all the time....including, today, his birthday. So no party, no getting together for dinner...oh well....i guess we'll just do the celebrating at my going away party!! Happy Birthday Bubba!

06 August 2007

The Time Has Come....

Things have been uber, insanely busy!! I have approximately 10 [HOLY $&&%(^#$(*^#@$(*(*^#$(*^$#(*#$(&*(*&#$] days left until my departure to NYC. I'm so excited and so nervous and so freaking stressed about getting everything done! I have a lot to fill you in on, but unfortunately not a lot of time in which to do so. BUT if you're reading this and are within driving distance, YOU MUST COME to my going away party.

It will be at 2pm-ish August 12th [yes, that's a sunday]. It's at Hometown Electric, email me for address and directions. We will be partying until the alcohol runs out...which is probably 2am when the bar across the street closes. Invite everyone you know! B.Y.O.whatever you're drinking and if you wanna bring a snacky type food, I'm not going to say no!

Hasta for now. More to come later!

08 July 2007

Take A Brazilian Home

Bardstown--about 30 minutes up the road from E-town--has an annual Street Concert, which features local talent, has a bit of food & beer, and most importantly FREE! Since Tracy had to work [aww bad luck TK!], Christi & I met up with Bobby, Angie, Q, Meredith, & John House and we all schlepped down to the town square in Bardstown with our coolers and lawn chairs.

The concert featured several award winning song writers, The Love Of Angie's Life [aside, from Bobby of course!] whose name is suddenly escaping me, a fabulously cute and charming old man who sang Waltz Across Texas completely off the beat and slower than the music was playing...BUT I WAS SINGING WITH HIM!!, and a band from Brazil. Of course, being me and loving 'em TDH, I fell in love with the lead singer of the Brazilian band. Damn the camera phone for not being able to get in any closer. He was just very beautiful and had a magical voice. I soooooooooooooooo wanted to adopt him and bring him home with me. Christi was completely fine with this, but when I called to ask Tracy, he said no. hrmph! i never get to have any fun :(

just kidding. it was a fun night--and not just because John House kept the beer flowing [of course, he just enjoyed being told that he was the greatest man on earth--which is what I obligingly said every time he'd bring me a beer!]--the music was good and of course, as always just fun hanging out with friends.

see occassionally, even I can be sentimental!! okay, moment's over, now where did I put my beer?!?!?!?

04 July 2007

Happy Birthday America!

Yay!! It's the 4th of July!! Although it's a bit weird since it's on a Wednesday and even more weird not being at the wine shop trying to get everyone out the door to enjoy a ice cold refreshing beer while walking down Main Street. After an all American lunch of chili dogs and burgers [okay, we cheated and went to Sonic], we took a drive out to Hodgenville, which is the birthplace of President Abraham Lincoln. Well, who the heck knew that Lincoln was born here? I certainly didn't!! I only learned about a year ago that Lincoln was actually born in Kentucky [I was doing research to find reasons for Christi to be excited about moving here...you know, other than bourbon!], but I didn't realize his actual birthplace was just a few minutes down the road.

We took a boardwalk through the property to get from the visitors center to a
Lincoln Monument-esque building on the site of where the Lincoln cabin was located.
Within the building is this cabin. It's not the actual cabin that the Lincolns owed, however, is a cabin from that time period. The walk--and the property in general were very beautiful. Since theLincolns only lived here until Abe was 7, there wasn't a lot to see....but that didn't stop Tracy & I from trying on Abe Lincoln & Daniel Boone hats at the gift shop!

The day ended with fireworks [from all the neighbors!]--the perfect ending to our July 4th holiday!

Happy Birthday America!

ps--DID YOU KNOW, that you can buy fireworks in the store here? There were everywhere--WalMart, Target, Kroger. It was unreal, especially when you're from Texas and have to drive to a stand to buy them AND then shoot them off outside city limits. But nope, in Kentucky you can buy them in the store [not all types], but if you can buy it in the store [and not drive to Tennessee to get the really big ones], then you can also shoot them within the city limits. Crazy schtuff!! :)

pps--did you know that in Kentucky, they had a very late freeze which caused all the deciduous trees to don their fall colors, so all along the country side you see trees with their fall colors--here you can kinda see one of the trees. I think TK got a better picture of it, so i'll try to download a clearer one later!

01 July 2007

Awww....A Baby Beer!

This is Bobby--friend o' Tracy & Christi. Bobby is not a huge drinker [well, someone's gotta drive us drunks around!!] and usually only has a couple of beers in an outing.

Anyway, Christi and I went on a B-EE-RR-U-N the other day--and you have to do that here because Christi & Tracy went and moved to a dry county. However, the drive for the B-EE-RR-U-N is absolutely beautiful [even when you haven't been drinking!], so it's really not much of a chore [and certainly more fun than driving to The Strip in Lubbock]. Anyway, Christi & I are searching high and low for some Shiner Bock [they usually have some in stock], but come across BABY bottles of BudLight [Bobby's water--uh, beer of choice!]. Well, we just couldn't resist and bought him a six-pack.

I don't know who had more fun--Bobby announcing on a frequent basis that he was ready for another beer, did anyone want one....or just watching him drinking his baby beer---that was COMPLETELY engulfed in my Luckenbach coozie [aka huggy if you're in Kentucky or stubby holder if you're in Australia], except for the skinny little neck. Bobby actually had to SQUEEZE the coozie to get it to touch the sides of the beer. Notice the size compared to regular beers!

Apparently lil'beers are all the rage when you're younger and living in Kentucky. Funny, I woulda thought it'd be bourbon!!


23 June 2007

Weekends Off....

Talk about a weird feeling--having weekends off. It wasn't so noticable while I wasn't working because all the days started running together--but now that I am employed, I'm vaguely remembering what it was like to have weekends completely off. It's very strange to be sitting home on a Saturday night, flipping through the channels [for those of you who do work on Saturday night, you're not missing anything on the telly!]

Additionally Tracy & Christi are in Florida, visiting Tracy's kids--so I'm here all by my lonesome with all the puppies. It's kinda nice, as it's the first chance I've had since April to just be alone and relax and--at least for the most part--not really worry about anything or going somewhere or working [or finding a job] and while I can't wait for them to return, I am relishing the quietness of having the house to myself for a few days.

What have I been doing--not a lot and lovin' every minute of it!! I've done a bit of reading [getting ready for the new Harry Potter!], working on my scrapbooks [as there's not gonna be lots of time for that once school starts!] and a bit of searching for a place for me and da girls to live in The Big Apple [I've emailed several owners/manager/agents getting information]. Sadly, I'm starting to get numb to the outrageous rent for postage stamps and am now very leary of anything below $1000, especially if it has any bedrooms. Pathetic, I know, but it's better than being shell-shocked and appalled every time I look!" now if I could just get my grants & loan money in my grubby little hands, I'll be a happy, happy girl!


22 June 2007

HalfPint Brawlers

YAY!!! I finally found a job!! Dear, sweet, kind, loving, wonderful, benevolent Tracy took pity on my joblessness self and offered me some part-time work at Belk!! I thank him and ASSURE him my housekeeping duties will not suffer [since I have been, in all my free time, doing the cooking & cleaning]!! So I go in, sit in front of a training computer for 5 hours, get my schedule for the rest of the week and then BAM! the temp agency calls--they have a full-time, M-F/8-5 job for about 3 weeks. After discussing it with Tracy, because I didn't want to leave him hanging [and setting off Christi's phone while she was IN COURT!], I quit Belk to take the temp job--which turned out to be in the video-on-demand department at the cable company here--Comcast. My job is to assist the very-far-behind tech responsible for creating all the buttons that you see when you click to the VOD menu on your cable. Mostly I do data entry--adding buttons, taking off buttons, inputting descriptions, labels, web addresses for all shows that are available on VOD. Next week I start rearranging buttons to the format requested by Comcast HQ--it took me nearly 3 hours to number where everything goes....so actually inputting the data should probably take up most of next week--in addition to all the daily updates & changes I'm to make. Not only that, but the Elizabethtown offices actually oversees 2 areas: E-town and Paducah [don't ask, 'cuz I don't know where it is]--so all work is done in duplicate AND soon triplicate, as they are in the process of adding another town--somewhere in West Virginia. Yep, I said West Virginia....anyway, I digress.

HalfPint Brawlers in the actual name of an ACTUAL show. I am currently drawing a blank on which network it's shown--mainly because I was quite disturbed by the name of this show! Are you freaking kidding me? HalfPint--as in little/young and brawl--as in bar room fight???????? I guess I could look it up on the www, but truthfully, I'm kinda scared to know exactly what it is.

Hmmm...I just hope is not going to be on long, too bad I can't just accidentally "hide" the button. One thing is for sure, I shan't be watching it any time soon....or really, AT ANY POINT PERIOD.

crazy schtuff, to say the very least.

Otherwise, enjoying Kentucky immensely. Enjoying just having a break, but truth be told, am very glad to be working again [not that I'd say it outloud, but I was starting to get a little bored, laying around and eating bonbons all day!]


03 June 2007

Bottling Day!

In keeping with our alcohol-filled weekend, today we are bottling Zinfandel that Tracy & Christi have been making at home. I had a teeny-tiny sample and I must say that I'm quite impressed. Of course, there's not a lot that I've been doing, other than watching Tracy work....but he assures me that I will be put to work later on in the process. In the meantime, I've been slaving away all day checking email, doing a bit of apartment hunting and chasing down Stella. Yep. That's right, chasing down Stella, who pushed her way past Christi while she [Christi] was trying to take out the trash. Of course, Addy, Ginger, & Chloe followed...but of course being less stubborn and better listeners, they came back. Stella, however, in her [as David calls it] street-smart ways decided to go for a run, taking Tracy, Christi, & I with her [although we didn't run quite as fast as she did!]. About 30 minutes later, Tracy caught her in front of Belk--ha ha go figure. Hopefully, it is our only incident [fingers crossed!]

well, as promised--i was put to work--first helping fill the bottles, then will putting on the labels. everything went pretty smoothly...for the most part [even though at one point I did end up with a bit of vino on my foot!]. Here's the finished product:

doh! really, i didn't have that much to drink....guess i'm fired as labeler....

Cheers! :ISHEZ

02 June 2007

Bourbon Trail

One of the 1,000 places in my 1,000 Places to See Before You Die: A Traveler's Life List by Patricia Schultz is the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. And today we started along the trail. There are 6 Bourbon Distilleries on the trail. We started with the 2 closest: Jim Beam and Heaven Hill. After brief tours, we did the only sensible thing to do: taste!

Here's a picture of Christi and I sitting and enjoying our Booker's at the Jim Beam tasting room--what a rough afternoon we were having! I also learned that like certain wines [champagne, chianti, etc.], there are specific things that makes a bourbon. First it has to be at least 51% corn. Additionally it has to be aged a minimum of 2 years in charred new white oak barrels. Nothing can be added at the time of bottling to enhance the flavor, sweetness, or color. 90% of bourbon comes from Kentucky. They have the limestone soil that allows for clean, crisp water that essential for making good bourbon and Kentucky is the only state allowed to put their name on the label.
I look forward to touring [and TASTING] at the other 4 distilleries: Maker's Mark, Wild Turkey, Four Roses, & Buffalo Trace.
Cheers! :ISHEZ

25 May 2007

Raining Cats & Dogs!

Well, it's raining. Not a nice, slow steady rain. Not a light sprinkle. HEAVY, BIG, FAT DROPS. SHEETS OF WATER ARE FALLING FROM THE SKY. We are--and it's predicted will be--under a flash flood warning until WHO KNOWS WHEN. It's crazy....crazy I tell you!!

This is what www.weather.com has to say about the flooding in Gillespie County [which for those of you who do not know is where Fredericksburg is located]:

Flood Warning Update
625 AM CDT FRI MAY 25 2007

I'm okay....well except for the water that's coming in under my patio door, SOAKING my boxes of books that were happily hanging out waiting for transport to storage. Are we all just SOOOO excited about May showers?!?!?!?!?


17 May 2007

Beginning of the End

Well, today is my last day at the wine shop. It's hard to believe that it's here, but it is....of course, there's still a lot to do, but today's going to be dedicated to packin' & drinkin'--although perhaps not in that order.

Of course, Izzy swears I'll be back--and of that I have no doubt, as it's my home away from home. Turning in the key is going to feel strange, but it is time to move on.....


12 May 2007

Start Spreading The News....

It's official--I'm headed to The Big Apple! New York, New York. Home of Columbia University. I officially submitted my acceptance and sent in [eeck!] my $500 deposit yesterday. Now would be a great time to solicit for the Sherry's Going Back to School Fund. Please give generously and often!! no? not interested? Okay, how about the Stella & Addy Fund to Keep Us Living in the Cush Life to Which We Are Accustomed? still no? okay, fine....

Tom has very eloquently reminded me that technically I am a non-traditional student and should have more access to grants/loans/scholarships. Hmmm....was that a polite way of calling me old????

Okay, gotta go--lots to do in the upcoming weeks, but will keep you informed of the WHOLE process!! Am excited, am nervous, am officially crazy!!! but how fun it is!!!


16 April 2007


Okay, technically, my pic should be in the wanted poster, but we alllllllllllllllllll know how technologically challenged I am--perhaps I'll work on that later this evening, but I'm not making any guarantees!
Anyway, I'm getting locked up...for good!! At least for an hour or so--it's to help raise money for MDA and I have to collect Bail Money to get out. Here's hoping the Judge is lenient enough to not keep me there forever [of course, there = Chili's....so I'm imagining serving out my sentence with a Grande Margarita!!] sigh...I can dream, can't I????

If you'd like to help bail me out of jail, please send contact me as soon as possible for your pledge. Arrest date is May 24, which is right around the corner. Just remember that even if you like the thought of me being locked up, there are kids with Muscular Dystrophy who need your help. To learn more about MD, go to www.mdusa.org


10 April 2007

Whatta Wacked Out Weekend!

What a crazy, busy weekend! Not only was it Easter but of course, I was working all weekend. It all started Friday afternoon with a call from DDC. Stella & Roxie [Sheila's dog] got into a fight. Now we all know that Stella & Roxie are very verbal with each other and DDC knows not to put them together in the big pen. However, there is a new girl and new girl was moving the dogs around and didn't properly close the gate to the big pen. Roxie seeing an open gate, pushed over the new girl and beelined for Stella. SIX stitches later...my poor baby is limping and moping about...of course, she was overly excited about getting to go out to Grammers--gimpy leg and all!

We went up to Mom's Friday night for a little R&R. I thought it'd be nice since I was working Easter lunch, however, TOTALLY forgot that Andon's 1st birthday party was scheduled for the next day at Mom's house. So, there was NO R&R to be found anywhere! I perfectly timed our arrival so that I could let the girls run around for a bit and add my two cents about what to do for dinner. After dinner, we all looked for Sammy [Mom's cat] who with all the hoop-la went on walkabout sometime in the afternoon. Stella eventually found him--which also created some excitement. Unbeknownst to any of us Aunt Barbara delivered the cakes while we were at dinner. Dean...funny, goofy Deano in being silly with The Girls, stuck his hand in one of the cakes. DOH! Teresa fussed, but Momma fixed it--mostly. [we found out the next day when Aunt Barbara came out, she had already messed it up on the drive out!!]

The next morning I was puttering around the house; threw The Girls outside to run around and play before we had to leave. It was kinda dreary out but Addy loves water and Stella loves to run around and I didn't think anything more about it....until about 15 minutes later they were BEGGING to get back in. Of course, I fussed a bit [go play. you never get to run around. go!] I felt kinda bad because it was sleeting. Oops. I let them in as soon as I realized it wasn't rain, it was sleet. Stella's never been more happy to come inside in her life! Bad Momma! Well, sleepy not fully caffeinated Momma! 45 minutes--that was the driving time back to town [it only took 25 minutes to drive out] because of the roads and the sleet. I figured it would stop, but alas, no--it didn't...in fact, sleet soon gave way to SNOW! it was magical and so-very-UNEaster-in-Texas. Of course, the temp was too high to stick to the ground, but we got the big, fluffy white stuff!!

Easter was good. Brunch was busy--not crazy busy, but a nice steady busy. Afterwards, Bubba & Lauren and the girls stopped by on their way back from Mom's [who on the phone was a little toooooo happy for me not to come out...I think she was wanting peace & QUIET!]--Lala and Reesie were asleep, but I got rid of the last of my Ranch stuff [woo-hoo!]--books & etc that were Bubba's.

The Girls & I had a quiet evening at home. All is well.


PS--forgot to mention most exciting news of the weekend: Kevin and Monique got engaged!! :) wedding date: October 27

01 April 2007

Ain't No Foolin'!

I am pleased to announce that Penny & Michael now have a beautiful addition to their family--Miss Adelaide Zipporah Ayling. She was born on March 31st at 5:19pm. She was 12 days early [headstrong, like her Mum!!] and weighed in at 5lbs14oz. Mum & bubba are doing well and according to proud papa, Adelaide is "testing her new lungs and larnyx to good effect".

Welcome Baby Adelaide!
Auntie Shezza

21 March 2007

Spring Cleaning!

Happy Spring Equinox
[even though technically it happened at 12:07 GMT, as April was quick to remind me!]

Spring has sprung and so too have the urges of spring cleaning. Monday--amongst everything else that I had to do/supposed to do, I hunkered down in the apartment and did 7--yes SEVEN--loads of laundry. threw out ALL non-paired socks [talk about liberating!] and FINALLY went through the remaining boxes from the ranch [talk about uber-liberating!] I threw out all sorts of papers and crap, crap, crap. I think I--all by my lonesome--filled an entire dumpster! Some of these boxes hadn't been opened for 10+ years, so I figured if I've lived without it for this long, I probably don't really need it anyway...so I kept a few mementos that would fit into my scrapbooks and ditched the rest!! I have reclaimed my dining room!!! YAY!!

of course, the reclaiming lasted about 5 minutes until I could move the dog crates into the space. Dog crates, you ask? Yep, I finally broke down and bought them each one. They're huge, but luckily were on sale, so I paid a whoooooole lot less than I thought I would! double YAY!! I probably didn't need the biggest ones, but NOTHING BUT THE BEST FOR MY BABIES! Stella & Addy are adjusting to them. Addy likes to lay in Stella's crate when they're open [ie I'm at home and it's raining so I won't let her outside]. Stella's very good about going in when I say "kennel"--Addy, not so much, although she's getting better [she is afterall, just a puppy!]

So, now that my house is pretty much cleaned and organized--save one closet, which is clean--just needs to be reorganized! So I feel very productive....and the wineshop is next!

Happy Spring!
:I shez

06 March 2007


Well, I'm in the final countdown to hearing back from universities....so needless to say [but I'm gonna say it anyway], I'm a bit panicked! But in an effort to remain true to my leaving The 'Burg, I've started job searching and putting out feelers for where is next for Stella, Addy, & I to live. Of course, job searching for me is not easy, as there's a lot I can do and a lot that I'm interested in but mainly what I really want to do, I'm not qualified for without further schooling and some experience. So I've taken to also looking into different places I might want to live and then job searching specifically in those cities.

clear as mud?

i found the website www.findyourspot.com took their little quiz [okay, it's like 7 or 8 pages, so not so little] and here are the top 24 cities in the USA, based on my answers:

Albuquerque, NM
Hartford, CT
Portland, OR
Honolulu, HI
Boston, MA
Providence, RI
New Haven, CT
San Jose, CA
San Fransisco, CA
Seattle, WA
Baltimore, MD
Denver, CO
Little Rock, AR
Worcester, MA
Washington, DC
Las Vegas, NV [baby!]
Carlisle, PA [huh?]
Milwaukee, WI
Cincinnati, OH
Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN
Oakland, CA [uh, i don't think so!]
Knoxville, TN
Baton Rouge, LA

notice anything particular? NO TEXAS CITIES!?!?!?! I'm not exactly sure how that happened, although I did mention something about liking definite season changes and not insanely long, excriutatingly hot summers...oh wait...[ding!]

while I haven't been to many of them, there are quite a few on the list that for me, would rank a LOT lower than Austin, Dallas, or San Antonio. But there are a few surprises that I might check out as well--and NO it's not going to be Oakland!!!!!!!

very interesting. wonder if they have anything similar but with international cities???

more later!
:I shez

ps--new wires on braces--hurt waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more than getting braces on....please refer to my previously written Christmas carol and multiply times 10! :(

20 February 2007


Okay, it's official--I'm nuts!! [of course you knew this]

Stella got a sister. Her name is Addy. Someone just dropped her off at DDC and she was bouncing around among the staff and I just couldn't stand it...I couldn't.....I just couldn't. So I brought her home--with the understanding that IF Stella couldn't adjust, I'd have to bring her back, as it is Stella's home and she has to be okay with it.

I mean seriously--could you say no to this?

Of course, I didn't realize that she was still a puppy! Her original name was Bella, but that had to be changed, so I named her Addy--as in Adelaide, Queen of England from 1830-1837 [and is also the capitol of South Australia].

There have been a few growing pains--many caused by the fact that Addy is a lab puppy and doesn't know how to back down, much to the chagrin of her big sister. But because they're about the same size [YES, I AM CRAZY!] they play really well together. And Stella has taught little sister a couple of very handy things, such as jumping on the furniture and barking [Thanks Stel!] Stella likes to act very put-out by the new addition to our family...but seriously--does this look like a distressed dog?

tired? yep? distressed? i think not.

Unlike her big sister, Addy is a cuddly, follow Momma everywhere kind of dog. Although when I am stationary [ie sitting in the chair reading, playing my ds, watching telly], she will go outside and bask in the sunlight. Stella perches herself on the couch or bed to observe [i think mainly to avoid being pounced on by little sister!] And on a positive note for me, my arm muscles are starting to take more definite shape from walking these two mammoths!
crazy, i know....but happy!
:) shez

06 February 2007

Holy Super Closet Cleaning Batman!

I just found out--or actually was just reminded--that I have carpet, albeit old, in my closets! Who knew?!?!? I have begun the countdown until leaving--which may be in May or may be in June--but I am systematically, slowly, and thoroughly going through EVERY SINGLE INCH of my apartment and sorting everything--throwing out and giving away a large chunk of it!! I'm being very slow, but very productive!!

But it's giving me something to do in my spare time. Why all the spare time: Cuvee closed. Yep for good. Why? Who knows what really happened. All I know is that this put a HUGE kink in my getting out of here by May [which is why I'm not sure if I'm leaving in May or June] So, now I'm looking for another night/weekend job...unfortunately, it's slow here in The 'Burg right now, so not many people are hiring and of course, the wineshop is my first priority which doesn't make my schedule very flexible. Plus I was extremely spoiled and the thought of "breaking" in new people isn't appealling right now!

I am enjoying the quiet evenings at home....of course, since we were given NO warning about Cuvee, I didn't have time to budget adjust, so I'm uber-poor right now. I've adjusted things like phone, car payment, student loan payment and cable, but not in time for February payments. Oh well, thank goodness February is a short month--6 days down, 22 to go!! Fortunately, I just bought coffee--otherwise the rest of the month might have just gotten ugly!!

Alright, must go--mountain of laundry [blocking the shower & toliet...you laugh, I'm serious!] is calling....

ciao for now!
:I shez

26 January 2007

Happy Australia Day!

It's Australia Day--although I realize that by now, it's no longer Australia Day in Australia.

Australia marks the day [January 26, 1788] when Captain Arthur Phillip took formal possession of the colony of New South Wales and became its first Governor. The fledging colony soon began to celebrate the anniversary of this date. Manning Clarke notes that in 1808 the "anniversary of the foundation of the colony" was observed in the traditional manner with "drinking and merriment". The first official celebrations were held in 1818 to mark the 30th anniversary of white settlement. Governor Macquarie officiated at a thirty-gun salute during the day and a dinner ball at Government House that evening. [click on www.australiaday.gov.au to learn more, which is where I got the previous statements]...I'd love to tell you all about my previous Australia Day experiences, but I can't remember them--I have no doubt a lot of "drinking and merriment" were involved!!

So in honour of Australia Day--as no doubt you've heard numerous times at the Sydney Olympics and subsequent sporting event involving Australians: Aussie Aussie Aussie Oi Oi Oi!

Oh and before I forget--Happy Birthday Jordan!! :)

:I shez

23 January 2007

Snow Angel....

I have created the perfect snow angel...check it out!!

It dumped and I mean dumped a LOT of snow on Amarillo, just in time for my arrival on the 21st. Ironically, it was my plane out of Austin that got cancelled due to fog rather than my plane from DFW to Amarillo because of snow. I caught the next flight [at 6:30am] to DFW and got there in just enough time to barely catch my flight. OF COURSE American was actually thinking ahead and switched me to a later flight into Amarillo, but given I only had 52 hours in Amarillo to begin with, I didn't want to spend 2.5 hours sitting at DFW if I could actually make my original flight. The flight attendant told me if I could make it--across four terminals in 10 minutes--I could board the early flight as it wasn't yet full. So I am running through the airport like OJ while trying to call Christi & Becca to see if I got the early flight, could we go back to airport 'cuz there was NO WAY my luggage was making it! Literally made it just in time. Didn't get a seat assignment, they didn't even scan my boarding pass before i boarded [because well, it said that i was on a different flight]--the flight attendant was doing that as I was running down the boarding ramp and on to the plane. Just sit anywhere she said. Well I don't know--the plane only seats about 30 people....and the head count before I got on was about 10. The flight to AMA wasn't bad--it was kinda' cool because you could actually see the snow line on the ground....ahhh....how pretty. how white. how the hell are we going to land?????????????

Speaking of white, that was the color of my knuckles as we approached the runway, which we were now close enough to notice that it had a nice thick covering of ice and snow. We touch down, we bounce a bit, the plane fishtails, we sway back and forth and back and forth. I look out and realize "why worry? the worst that could happen at this point is we'd slide off the runway and into a field of snow." I get out my phone and snap a few pictures of the snow on the runway. Apparently the roads were just as bad as Becca, Eugene, Christi, Tracy, Xavier, and Victor were late in picking me up. I saw why when I piled into the suburban [how else are that many people going to travel in one vehicle] and we were headed back to Cindy & Lynn's house.

The rest of the afternoon was fun-filled and exciting. Well, except for maybe a trip to Wal-Mart with Becca on the way back from getting my luggage. I think at one point I was jumping up and down yelling "let's go, let's go, leeeet's checkout" I'm not sure, but I think I heard Becca mumbling something about needing to check medication. Hers or mine?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!? Cindy made an AWESOME dinner [as usual--when doesn't Cindy make something awesome!], we exchanged gifts--i got a box of chocolate covered cherries [that also came with a Nintendo DS], scarves, a coffee mug, a book of short stories, a book Elizabeth made me, a vest Becca crocheted, measuring tapes [I believe my comment as Christi, Chelle, and I opened our measuring tapes and just stared at them was "are you calling us fat???" but no, just was just sick of hearing us tell her that we didn't have a measuring tape when she called about a measurement for something she was making us], Tracy provided entertainment [no pervo, there were kids there--I was talking about a magic show!] and we ended the evening with several games of B-I-N-G-O! I actually won one game. SHOCKER! I never win! My prize was a magazine promising to lose 10 pounds quickly and had a chocolate cake on the cover....I've eaten a lot of chocolate cake, but have yet to lose that 10 pounds!

Monday we attempted to go to Borger, but the roads were too bad. After driving an hour and only getting about 20 miles, Lynn called it quits and we turned around and headed back to Amarillo. I was very sad not to get to see Nanny & Grandpa. It did, however, allow us a bit of free time, in which I got to make my snow angel in the front yard. At 3pm, Christi & I picked up Jillian, Caroline, Jarod, & Elizabeth from school and walked them to J & C's house [about 4 blocks] of course, we didn't realize that we'd have to cross a field o' snow to do so...and I actually ended up carrying Elizabeth across 1/2 the field! Tracy was waiting at the house and the kids tried to get him outside to attack him with snowballs, but we couldn't coax him out [although Jillian & Caroline got him pretty good when it was time for us to leave!]

It seemed to be a blink of an eye and I was back at the airport, noticing that the runway had been cleared of the ice and snow, heading back down to where the temps were a tad warmer. It was a fun trip, but waaaaaaaaaay too fast! at least this time the kids recognized me....

:I shez

20 January 2007

Soggy Surprise!

Happy Birthday Momma!

Teresa & I decided it would be fun to throw Mom a surprise birthday/housewarming party. Everyone was to show up at 7pm at her gate [it's about 1/2 mile from gate to house] and we'd all drive down to the house together and everyone surprise her! I have to admit we are genius! It was great...even though the weather was NOT cooperating. Bubba kept complaining about why we had to do it on the messiest, yuckiest night of the year. I reminded him we were actually only 19 days into the year and blame Granny & Grandpa, as this was the day [53 years ago] that she was born. Pretty much everyone invited showed up, brought food and alcohol, and a great time was had by all. All counted there were +50 people there and Momma was surprised when the cars kept coming down the lane and people kept pouring into the house. Regardless of the mud--and JeannieBel's prediction--the floor stayed pretty clean. Although it's stained concrete, so cleaning was a snap! The low moment came when we discovered it was also Larry's birthday and Teresa decided to add his name to Mom's German Chocolate Cake...in ketchup. Yep [and yuck!] you read that right! Since the icing was dark, nothing else showed up....aside from maybe mustard so ketchup seemed the less of two evils. Strangely no one wanted those pieces of cake and Teresa hadn't had that much to drink at that point!! While there were a few that left early, most everyone left around 11:30pm--which was a further indication about how successful it was!

Happy Birthday Momma!
:I sheshie

19 January 2007

The Dawning of the Sign of Aquarius

Okay, depending on which astrological chart you're looking at we're enter the sign of Aquarius at any moment now...why am I mentioning this? just to wish

HAPPY BIRTHDAYS to Momma & April!!!! :)

:I shez

18 January 2007

Agoraphobics & Snow-Ins Rejoice!

Did you know amazon.com has everything? literally everything. 36 categories--I'm shocked, I'm amazed, really I'm in awe! This is what you can get if you go to www.amazon.com RIGHT NOW:

Books, Music, DVD, Unbox Video Downloads [what the?], VHS, Magazines & Newspapers, Compture & Video Games, Software, Amazon Shorts [again, what the?], Electronics, Audio & Video, Camera & Photo, Cell Phones & Service, Computers & PC Hardware, Office Products, Musical Instruments, Outlet [watch out Tanger & Prime!], Home & Garden, Bed & Bath [but not Beyond], Furniture & Decor, Gourmet Food, Kitchen & Housewares, Outdoor Living, Pet Supplies, Automotive, Tools & Hardware, Industrial & Scientific, Apparel & Accessories, Shoes, Jewelry & Watches, Grocery, Beauty, Health & Personal Care, Sports & Outdoors, Toys & Games, Baby....whew! I think that may be it....

Groceries???? when did this all happen? what happened to just books, movies, music?????? but for those of you who don't want to get out, can't get out, or are "above" going to the SuperWalMart, but need tampons, motor oil, a new cell phone, and a flute--go to amazon.com and what the heck--get the lastest book in Oprah's bookclub....

okay, i have to go--i need to see what kind of groceries and gourmet foods amazon can provide me. plus I can just add it to my wishlist [sjerrij@gmail.com in case you were wondering how to access my wishlist! :D] YAY!! this is going to be fun, albeit strange....

:I shez

ps--for those of you like Sheila who want to know: yes, there are condoms available--3 pages of any shape, size, or preference you might want!!

17 January 2007

Slip Sliding Away!

Yes, I braved the elements to bring you this hilarious update about the weather....

walking Stella is freakin' hilarious!! firstly, i'm walking on the grass, which is covered in ice and crunching beneath my feet. The dog HATES walking on the grass with the ice crunching beneath her feet, so she chooses to walk on the sidewalk or street. Since she can't get much traction, so looks more like she's skating rather than walking, but the funniest is when she sees a bird, cat, deer, chihuahua [she thinks they're funny, noisy cats with strange hair], she wants to run after it, but she slips and slides and with her long legs flailing about is just damn funny. Of course, this usually happens right about the time that I've run out of grass and have ventured on the ice-covered street. So not only am I laughing out loud, but trying my best not to slip and slide and end up on my backside.
This is my patio fence--which accumulated about 2 inches of snow....

Since it's not raining, icing, sleeting, and snowing today [which it did ALL day yesterday], I decided to take her for a longer walk this morning. We hit a bit of an decline, which you tend not to notice when the street is not covered with a sheet of ice and we essentially slid one complete block--it was fun while it lasted....but truth be told, I was happy to make it down without falling on my keister!! We stopped in at Teresa's--who had warm coffee for me and a big backyard for Stella--so she got even more exercise galloping from one end of the yard to the other [yes, the dog is big enough to gallop!]--so she was happily dozing in a ball on the couch when I left her...

tomorrow brings slightly warmer weather--hopefully enough to melt all the ice and the weekend we're back into the 60's but still wet and yucky [gotta love Texas weather]

:I shez

15 January 2007


Not that in the grand scheme of things is it really cold here, but it's the coldest it's been so far this winter. Plus because there is a winter weather advisory in effect until thursday, everything has pretty much shut down and the shelves at HEB [the local grocery store] are looking pretty bare. Of course, everyone north of here is no doubt laughing at us. But I do have to say that when it gets icy, the roads here are a mess, topped with the fact that NO ONE is capable of safely driving--as they think that their 4WD is going to help them not skid on the ice!!

There's not a lot to report--I've come into work to do a bit of paperwork, but as no one is voluntarily out in this mess, I'm going home to watch movies and snuggle with Stella, who is annoyed because our walks have be dramatically cut to "would you hurry up, it's freaking too cold to be walking 45 minutes", so a quick walk around the block and we're back inside!

For those in colder regions--stay warm! For those in warmer regions--enjoy!!

bye fffffor now!!
:I shez