Wednesday, May 30, 2007

I've got it bad

During the boy's lacrosse practice I sat in my car with my iPod playing Tessie and other Red Soxish songs while I read the Surviving Grady book. Again. I cry everytime at the end. The stories about families and grandparents and the long, long wait between gets me every time.

I have a raging case of pennant fever.


The girlie bought lunch in the cafeteria the other day (first time - big news when you're in kindergarten) - a grilled cheese sandwich, chips, pickles and chocolate cake. Hello, Mr. Sodium. This from a school that has mandated that kids must bring healthy snacks from junk - no cookies, cupcakes, fruit roll ups or chips - stuff like that. And really, I'm okay with's pretty much what we do anyway. But then you go and serve a salt filled lunch and top it off with a piece of cake?


And the boy's school? It's in the same district and they sell little debbie cakes and cookies and such to the kids at lunch. And there's no snack restriction. WTF - a little consistency please?


Am behind on the laundry and the vacuuming. Hope it rains tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I did the purse thing awhile back. The bag has changed but the lack of organization remains. It's how I roll.

This weekend was a wee bit AWESOME. There was some Entourage, Rome and Quinceanera watching, some Nevada Barr and E. Annie Proulx reading, some pond raking (nobody likes a leafy bottom), a bit of blog reading and chinese food consumption (much cheaper when you're buying for one).

And then they returned.

The boy had an absolute meltdown. He missed me terribly, he hated me immensely. Such is life. It was all brought on by an onset of 'hey, my friend might invite me over so now going to the Paw Sox with the family is a HORRIBLE idea.' It quickly spiraled downward but there was more weighing on his mind and after a bit of crafty deducement I figured it was the stress of the impending field trip. The impending Four Day field trip. None of his friends were going, he had just been away for two days (and according to my husband, he was saying how much he missed me before they were even north of Boston), his teeth are now needing the root canals...they are starting to hurt, a three hour bus ride - it was all too much.

So to the Paw Sox we went. We left too late, the seats were general admission and were horrible and practically non-existent. We hung at the right field wall ducking foul balls. Can I just say that if, as an adult, you want to hang at the wall - don't knock over kids to get the fouls. Don't. Just duck. Or go somewhere else. There are alot, not ALOT of jerks out there. I'm just sayin'.

And there were fireworks, so that was a bonus.

The turtles are gone, released back into the wild. Still not sure what kind they were...the second one the boy found was even smaller than the first and he wasn't so nice. Kept trying to bite.
Here's the first, larger and nicer, turtle. Not sure why anyone would really like a turtle for a pet...yawn, yawn, yawn. Plus I don't really 'get' animals that could give two shits about their owners. I lump cats in with this classification. Quite possibly the guinea pig too, but at least he doesn't scratch and hiss and he wouldn't pee all over the bed because he was pissed about the color of the sky or some such nonsense.

The boy did NOT leave for the field trip this morning, we called the whole thing off. We kissed the fee goodbye but we were left with a much happier son. A fair trade.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Just got word...

they're staying in Maine for another night.

I'm going to a party where I will only have myself to be responsible for. While in theory it sounds good, I'm wondering if I'll be lonely.

Then again, I think I'm going to pick up some milk so I can eat my breakfast at the pond tomorrow morning. Honey Smacks, sunglasses and a book. Maybe even a swim.

Friday, May 25, 2007

It's seven thirty one.

The family, i.e. the husband and two kiddos, has just left for a twenty four hour jaunt to Maine.

Leaving me to my own devices.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Well, you guys.

Thank you so much for the birthday wishes and kind words. It was all very much appreciated over here.

The husband tried to secretly arrange for the families to come over for cake but 1.)Irish Whisper and 2.)My mother in law just doesn't get the 'surprise' part of surprise and she kept saying "So, we'll see you tonight" when I spoke to her earlier in the day.

I got some gift cards, some money, earrings and a wooden plaque that says "I Love Angels" with handpainted flowers. hearts and a winged angel. Yeah, I KNOW but it's from the girlie so it won't be going in the woodstove any time soon.

We have a baby turtle, quite possibly of the snapping variety, that's living in a big rubbermaid container on our kitchen counter. His shell is the size of a nickel. He's completely adorable and just went on his first car ride to the boy's school. We're thinking of raising him up as a pet and trying to train him not to snap. Oh, we aren't.

Monday, May 21, 2007

This one is swiped from Blackbird (and Badger).

If I was an hour of the day... I'd be 9:30 a.m. (on a sunny day)
If I was a planet... I'd be Saturn.
If I was a direction... I'd be east.
If I was a piece of furniture... I'd be book shelves.
If I was a liquid... I'd be lemonade.
If I was a sin... I'd be envy.
If I was a rock... I'd be cobblestone.
If I was a tree... I'd be a beech.
If I was a fruit... I'd be a blueberry.
If I was a flower... I'd be a lilac.
If I was a climate... I'd be snowy.
If I was a musical instrument... I'd be a hmmm. acoustic guitar, I guess.
If I was an element... I'd be Water.
If I was a color... I'd be blue.
If I was an animal... I'd be a bear.
If I was a sound... I'd be a canoe paddle slicing through an otherwise silent pond.
If I was music... I'd be that song Brandy.
If I was a music style... I'd be classic rock.
If I was a feeling... I'd be grateful.
If I was a book... I'd be Home Ice by Jack Falla.
If I was a food... I'd be buttered, salted popcorn.
If I was a place... I'd be our pond.
If I was a flavour... I'd be raspberry.
If I was a scent... I'd be freshly mowed lawn.
If I was a word... I'd be "mom".
If I was a verb... I'd be "forget".
If I was an object... I'd be a Patriot's season ticket.
If I was a part of the body... I'd be the eyes.
If I was a facial expression... I'd be a raise of the eyebrows.
If I was a cartoon character... I'd be Velma.
If I was a movie... I'd be On Golden Pond.
If I was a shape... I'd be a circle.
If I was a number... I'd be 2.
If I was a season... I'd be Fall.
If I was a sentence... I'd be "Happy Birthday. To me."

Oops, that was two sentences.

Thanks, Jen for the awesome birthday wish! How 'bout them Sox?!?!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

My Sister in Law is doing the Avon Walk this weekend.

If you'd like to donate to a very worthy cause click here.

It's rainy and c-c-c-cold here this weekend - I give these guys alot of credit!

Friday, May 18, 2007

She says she wants them....

Well, it looks like I'll be having my first blogger meet up this weekend.

When I drop my kids off on Amy's doorstep.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A week?!?! It's been a week since I've posted? Oops. The computer just isn't seeing the use it's used to...the weather's too nice, there are books to be read and Sox to be watched.

Mother's Day has come and gone, the husband's birthday too. For mother's day I got to help spread three yards of mulch and watch my boy start the lawn mower and empty the clippings bag - all by himself. Big steps. Of course, he was mowing the neighbor's yard where he gets paid for mowing, as opposed to this yard where he does it because it needs doing.

I also had Lucky Charms and an english muffin for dinner. It's good to be me. Truth be told, I was hanging out with a different neighbor and we were catching the last glimpses of sunlight through the trees and watching her husband build a stone wall. Didn't feel like cooking.

We spent the other half of the weekend, not as a juvenile labor camp - but here and there

doing a bit of this. I've never been to that part of Massachusetts - Ipswich and such. Most of it was beautiful. Until we got to Salem - witch trial, Nathanial Hawthorne - Salem. Not so nice and much too MUCH. A very touristy area surrounded by tenement housing. Hurrah. I'm sure there are some worthwhile stops but they required a search for parking and too high admission fees. Not our type of thing.

I've got the cookout itch happening. Wanting to invite people over, hang around outside with cold drinks and snack foods. I'm needing a blender.... this one or maybe this one, if you're inclined to purchase me a birthday gift. Super Saver Shipping is fine, my birthday's Monday but a day or two late won't hurt my feelings.

And now, just about 30 seconds ago...

The bad part about sitting next to the fire chief's office, aside from the sniveling deputy chief? When they get an emergency call to your daughter's school (she's not there yet, she goes half days) and they race out of here, sirens blaring. Hoping everyone is okay.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Yeah, um, this isn't looking so good

So, I've gone and changed the names to protect the innocent - and it would appear - the guilty.

This is where the husband works and hopefully will continue to work after the jury returns. We've had some major go-arounds lately because I'm not entirely sure that working for a convicted felon is in our best interest but the decision has been made, the die's been cast and now we're riding this out.

Fun, eh?


XXX Co. fraud case goes to jury; Accused of overcharging government on paving jobs


Local Newspaper

BOSTON - Two top executives acted as ringleaders of a nearly decade-long paving fraud scheme at a contracting firm, prosecutors said in their closing argument in the trial of XXX Co.

‘‘It was part of the culture,’’ Assistant U.S. Attorney George H. said yesterday. ‘‘The company was rotten to the core because of the conduct of its president and vice president.’’

Owner and President Mr. XXX and Vice President Mr. YYY are facing charges of conspiracy, federal highway fraud and mail fraud. Prosecutors said they overcharged the government on paving jobs from 1995 to 2004.

Mr. XXX allegedly instructed an engineer to install a switch at the company’s asphalt plant that enabled operators to inflate weight readings on dump trucks and generate tickets for nonexistent loads. The tickets were submitted to the state and to towns as a basis for payment.

Summing up witnesses’ testimony in U.S. District Court yesterday, George H. said both accused men actively participated in the alleged scheme.

Richard G., a XXX Co. paving superintendent, testified that Mr. XXX and Mr. YYY told him to print extra weight tickets, and when he balked, Mr. XXX called him and told him to ‘‘do it.’’

Thomas F., a former paving superintendent, testified Mr. XXX instructed him to overcharge the town of S on gravel for a soccer field. Thomas F. said Mr. XXX arrived at the job, pulled him into his pick-up truck and said, ‘‘I’m going to show you how to make money.’’ Then Mr. XXX wrote out tickets for four nonexistent truckloads of gravel, Thomas F. testified.

Although the S project is not one of those named in the indictment, ‘‘it shows a similar plan he had to cheat government customers on projects,’’ Henderson said.

Thomas F. testified that Mr. XXX told him to submit phony asphalt tickets to make up for ‘‘rainy days’’ in which crews were not paving.

Mr. YYY instructed plant operators to keep track daily of how many tons of asphalt they overbilled, circling the number on a daily production sheet in what Mr. YYY called ‘‘Dick’s Magic Number,’’ Thomas F testified.

John M, an attorney for Mr. XXX, said the prosecution didn’t prove his client participated in a criminal scheme. The extra weight tickets could have had legitimate purposes such as serving as a trade-off for other expenses, John M. said.

Highway Department officials denied that weight slips could be submitted as trade-offs for other expenses, but John M. scoffed at their testimony during his closing statement. ‘‘In the world of state government, no employee is going to admit to a practice that isn’t in your handbook,’’ he said.

John M. also attacked the credibility of Bruce V., the former plant operator who installed the override switch. Bruce V. lied under oath when he was asked about his educational background, Markey said. Bruce V. gave a fictitious name for a Pittsburgh training institute where he received his diploma and misstated the type of degree he received, he said.

Mr. YYY's attorney, George M. , likened the firm’s alleged billing practices to a homebuilder who accelerates bills to a client. ‘‘He inflates what he has really done because he’s behind,’’ he said. ‘‘Maybe he has a bank looking at him and his receivables. At the end of the day, you got the exact job you paid for.’’

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

There are definitely worse places to watch a lacrosse game

We left the nephew's birthday party on Sunday and it was cloudy, windy and cold. We get here, where we're quite literally surrounded by ocean - and we just know it'll be f-f-freezing. There was hardly a breeze, not a cloud in the sky - perfectly wrong is what we were.

Thanks to Angie and Badger I'm thinking of trying my hand at some vegetables this year, some tomatoes for the girlie (who eats them like apples) and some greens for the guinea pig. All container stuff - easier to keep the dog at bay- plus I don't have a good spot in the yard to rototill.

Well, I'm off to read Harry Potter and the OOTP. Re-read actually - getting ready for number seven. Really though, I'm dropping the girlie off at school, grabbing a cold crystal light and the lawn chair, and THEN I'll be reading. Priorities, man, priorities.

Monday, May 07, 2007

How I wish I could close my office door

It is it wrong to want to holler out to the Deputy that he should stop being such a suck up to the Fire Chief?

I kind of want to wring his neck.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Ripped From the Headlines

Or from Oblivion:

"You know its always a good idea to donate your time to a good cause. Or at least it seemed like a good idea six months ago. But when the actual time comes ... you think ... why did I agree in the first place? Oh yea ... the whole good cause part. So you suck it up and do it."

So, I'm supposed to be helping out with setting up this yard sale that will end up benefiting a local scholarship fund. But, the group that's sponsoring the sale? I don't belong to it, haven't for years and now I only know one person that does belong to it. I told that one person I'd be there and I will be. But not for too's not like they need me there, I'm only going to see what they have for books and such. That whole 'why did I agree in the first place'? Has nothing to do with the good cause, more like hanging out with a friend and chatting and I don't want some lady from some group I don't belong to casting out well deserved evil glances behind my back because I'm doing literally nothing to help and am sort of just in the way. So, in short - I'm not sucking it up and SP is clearly a more responsible adult than I am.

Hey, the Sox pulled another one out of their collective asses last night, eh? Well, eh? to Amy and whomever else might have watched. Probably just Amy. But that is oh-kay. But just so y'know...there will be no room on the bandwagon come October. Not sure about the whole Hit and Watch thing that Manny has been doing more and more of. Dude - just start jogging, it won't kill you.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Sorry if I horrified you all with the Lord of the Flies birthday recap. Granted there was no roasting each other over a spit and chowing down - but believe me, it was only a matter of time.

I just finished reading The Double Bind for my book group and I can't wait to thank the hostess for totally wasting my time. Not that I would do that but I can be counted on for at least a bit of good natured ribbing.

If you plan on reading this book you should skip the next paragraph. Or you could read on and save yourself the trouble.

Ugh, ugh and ugh. I've not had bad luck with Chris Bohjalian (Midwives and Before You Know Kindness) and this one started out with some promise but BUT less than halfway through it got mind numbingly dull (we getcha main character girl - must. develop. pictures.) and then the surprise wasn't that she was going crazy (duh) but that the parts of the novel that I thought were real (like the boyfriend's kids) totally weren't and there was nothing to be gained by that entire vein of story line. Or maybe there was and I was so ready for the story to get a move on that I missed what the point was. I am counting on the book club gals to enlighten me. And by enlighten I don't mean 'she was having a psychotic breakdown because of a horrific incident and see how fast one's life can change and you too could be homeless or beyond help too' . Because I get that. It was just that the "HERE IS THE POINT I WANTED TO GET ACROSS" plot line pretty much ruined it.

The Gatsby tie in was good but because both books were fiction I was assuming that he was using the characters from Gatsby (or descendants of) as characters in this book. But he wasn't and the story was just like Dallas and Newhart - not a dream but just a figment of her imagination. Charming.

My nephew's first birthday party is this Sunday. I'm thinking the party is a little, um, ambitious. The mom was going to have party favors made up for everyone. Goodie bags for the kids, something or other for the grown up ladies and for the men? Keychains with her son's picture on them. Um, hell low? Was it wrong to laugh out loud when my mother in law told me? My MIL talked her down off the ledge - the key chains are a no-go. Did I mention that there were over sixty guests invited? And that they live with my in-laws who now, by default, are hosting a rather large party? And that their backyard is still not at all finished from the septic installation this past fall? Just so you know I am right now shaking my head in wonder.

Must go play Paper Mario before the boy gets home and I have to beat him at H.O.R.S.E. Again.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

The Month in Review. In Pictures. In no particular order.

The boy, celebrating his birthday...again. This time at the hockey cookout. Not the greatest of pictures but his hair looks okay in this one - and believe me - that's no small feat.
Lay cross. He runs, he passes, he catches. We watch. Osprey nest we saw the other day while driving to a friend's house. The nest had basically doubled in size when we saw it the next week. And the lady osprey was sitting in there keeping the babes warm. Well, babes to be. Or as we like to call them....omlettes.
The scavenger hunt list from the boy's party. This should've been more fun than it was.

One of the boy's friends is, um, a major pain in the ass. He has friends instead of parents and christ almighty it shows. He turned it into this super competitive race and proceeded to call the other team stupid and gay and what have you. He's the king of inappropriate and loves to see just how far he can push some one.

That some one being me on the day of the party.

The husband was working and this boy is the type of kid that gets all the other boys riled up and acting, not totally out of control, but not how they normally would. And there were a few who run a close second to him in terms of how obnoxious they can be. Good kids gone bad. Well, the last straw was when he and another boy who, quite frankly is a complete angel any other time, peed on the tree where they hid the capture the flag flag.

So that if the other team found the flag he would be able to say "HA HA We peed on that tree." Thereby wrecking the other team's moment of glory.

Which is exactly what happened except it backfired because the girlie was on the team that found the flag (it was the tree that got peed on - the flag was fine). She cried and cried and tattled right in front of everyone.

Well, N starts trying to laugh it off and even my husband (who had just gotten in from work) only said something about that being kind of gross. I lit into the group of them, ripped them a new one, as the saying goes. Not exactly how I planned on ending the party.

End result of a big wind storm that blew through. We didn't lose any major trees but I got out of bed during the height of the storm and watched the trees swaying (and heard them cracking - always fun) in the sixty mile an hour winds.
These are the average size pine trees that surround our home. Wind storms aren't as fun as they used to be. I actually got the boy out of his bed and snuggled him into ours (his bed is tucked into the dormer and another time a tree fell and missed another dormer by inches - wasn't taking a chance) for the duration. The trees are like, sixty to eighty feet tall and we've already taken some of them down but it may be time to reevaluate.
Some deer in a field. In the rain.
Easter. Yawn.

Wacky girlie shot. Because I like it.