Saturday, January 30, 2010

Here We Go Again

First of all, can I just say how tired I am of being cold?


Moving is snowing here yet again. We were only supposed to get a trace to 2 inches here, with the southern end of the county picking up 4-8 inches. Late last night they altered the forecast and put our little county on a winter weather warning.

As of 4:30PM, we had nearly 5 inches of snow. And it's still coming down. Hard!

Our playground is destroyed. The canopy collapsed in the last snowstorm. Guess it's time to get rid of it, especially since the boys are 17 and 15. :)

I already made the chocolate chip cookies; now I think it's time to get my crocheting and a cup of fat-free hot chocolate and sit by the fire. It's just that kind of day!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

I'll Have a Schmall...Salad...

(Inside joke. :) )

So at Weight Watchers last night I hit 40 pounds lost. I celebrated by making a favorite WW chicken recipe that tastes like fried chicken and a roasted potato. The potato was the treat as I ate a roasted potato every day last week and gained .2 pounds. They are so good I couldn't resist!

After that lovely meal, I decided to get back on track. Here was tonight's meal:

It was actually pretty good; I had an American blend of lettuce with chick peas and 4 ounces of the faux fried chicken from last night. The plastic container at the top of the plate had my allotted 2 tablespoons of fat-free ranch dressing.

Pre-WW, I never would have thought I'd make a meal off a salad. But now...Bring on 50 pounds!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

A Good Decade and a Half!

I am old.

Yep, old.

Today, my baby is 15 years old. 15! How did that happen?

Here's my baby when he was 2 years little cowboy!

Happy Birthday, Nick! And hey--only 9 more months until he gets his learner's permit!

Yep...I am old. :)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Where's That Dirty Dog Smell??

It's gone!

I've needed to give the dogs a bath for a while now, but since Bingo decided to miss the grass and pee on Muffin today, I decided today was the day.

Poor little drowned rat...

Bingo got his turn...

All clean! Hope it lasts a while!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Wow...Haven't Seen Rain in a While

Can you believe we still have snow after the Blizzard of '09 back in the middle of December?

It shouldn't be around for much longer...we're getting a lot of rain today.

This creek behind our house only fills when we have a lot of rain. Must be at least an inch so far, with the looks of the creek.

Tomorrow should be sunny again. Hooray!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Holiday Thank You Notes

So it's that time of year again...time to write thank you notes for the Christmas gifts we received. This year, instead of using my personal note cards or buying new ones, I decided to try my hand at making thank you notes. Now, I'm no fancy scrapbooker, so the finished result is less than professional, but I think they turned out OK.

Here's a close-up of one of the smaller notes:

Complete instructions can be found here. I didn't make them as ornate as the creator did, but I like them. I just cut out a mitten template--freehand--and glued Christmas wrapping paper on a piece of cardstock. After tracing the template on the wrong side, I cut it out and let the glue dry a bit. I took scrapbooking scissors with a curvy edge and cut out a border from cardstock and glued it to the wrist end. Then I hole-punched small holes (and broke the hole punch in the process!) and threaded a piece of curling ribbon through. Tied a bow and curled the ends. Very easy!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Loyalty at its Finest

Look at my sweet Bingo, waiting for his family to come home!

He does this all the time...either looking out the window or out the front door.

Good boy, Bingo!

Friday, January 8, 2010

I Don't Think Anyone's Home!

Yes, we had more snow today. Only aboue 2 inches this time...a two-hour delay for school instead of a snow day. That's OK; too many snow days and we'll be in school until July!

Here's the yard early this afternoon the trees had shed themselves of the snow. The bird's nest in our front yard tree was clearly visible.

It's full of snow! I do hope the residents of the nest have flown south for the winter!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

On Top of the World!

Our last day in New York we visited the Empire State Building. Eric and I have been before, but the kids hadn't, so it was great to see them enjoy the view.

Wow, this building is tall! We're going up to the 86th floor observation area.

The Hudson River and surrounding buildings...

I love the gold-domed building! I never did find out what that was.

That's a LOT of real estate!

Yes, that's the Statue of Liberty! It was too cold for a boat ride to see her...maybe next time.

Here are my boys! JJ looks like he's holding on for dear WAS a windy day. 21 degrees, very high winds witha wind chill of 9 degrees. I can only imagine how cold it was 86 stories up! Part of the observation area was closed off due to the high winds.

The Chrysler Building...

I love this gold-plated rock wall leading into and out of the Empire State Building. And look what they had!

Yep...a Christmas tree!

The holidays in New York were wonderful...everything I'd thought they'd be...and more. We had a great time and can't wait to go back and see much much more!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

New York Through a New Yorker's Eyes

Last Saturday we took a walking tour of New York City guided by a resident of the city. His name was Nathan and he lives on the Upper West Side. He;s not a native of the city, but has lived there for 10 years, so that was good enough for us! We had a very enjoyable 3 hours and 6 miles with him...he showed us some great sights!

We met him in Greenich Village, near Bleecker Street Pizza, where we had lunch. We began by touring one of the cute neighborhoods in Greenich.

Recognize this building? It's Central Perk, the coffeehouse from the TV show Friends. Very cool!

This is supposedly the smallest house in New York City. The car in front is linger than this house! Just sold for over $4,000,000. Unbelievable. Side note: the poet Edna St. Vincent Milay used to live here.

Off to the bar section of Greenich Village:

Cafe Wha? is a very famous nightclub in the Village. The likes of Bob Dylan and Jimi Hendrix performed here. It's still in business today.

Can you see the Christmas sign? Yes, it says NoHo!!!!!! I never knew there was a NoHo: only a SoHo. Splitting the two areas is Houston Street (pronounced "Howston"). So everything north of Houston Street is NoHo and everything south is SoHo. Too funny....both areas were very fun and trendy...and crowded!

This very ordinary-looking building is where Heath Ledger died. His last home...very sad.

Little smelled so good here! didn't smell very good here! :) Lots of fishy smells...ick.

This was very the early 1900's this was an underground passage that was used in Chinatown by the gangs to transport opium. Now it's an underground business area. Dentists and shoe opium sighted!

This is the Brooklyn Bridge...we didn't walk across it because it was too cold and windy. Maybe next trip.

This is Mayor Bloomberg's house in downtown New York. Nice little place... :)

Our tour guide took a nice family picture of us at City Park, where all the ticker tape parades end. There is a list of all the honorees that have been there. It was very pretty there, even with winter upon us.

Here's another very sad site...Ground Zero. Construction on the memorial is coming along nicely. But it's very jarring to be among all the skyscrapers and then round a corner and see all this empty space downtown. The memorial is supposed to be 1,776 feet high...over a mile. Notice the feet line with the Declaration of Independence.

The Financial District...Wall Street! And look!

They have their own Christmas tree!

After all this walking, it was nice to finally sit down! We took our first ride on a New York City subway. It was cleaner than I expected, after seeing all those movies with dirty and trashy subways.

We had a great tour of the if only our hotel had a hot tub! We were sore!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

New Year's Night in New York

It was a dream come true for me...New Year's night we saw the Radio City Christmas Spectacular at Radio City Music Hall. Those girls are so talented! And Santa took a break from his long winter's nap to come and entertain, just for us! :)

There were tons of people and they seemed a bit unorganized with letting everyone in. We were sure we were going to miss the beginning, but thankfully we got seated just as the lights went down. No flashes allowed during the show, but it was "spectacular"!

The chandelier in the lobby was amazing! All crystal...

After the show we walked over a couple of blocks to check out Rockefeller Center and the famous Christmas tree.

It was everything I'd imagined, and more. It was enormous!

Here are my boys in front of the tree:

Of course, right there on the plaza is the NBC Studios...30 Rock for those who are fans of the Thursday night show.

JJ is a huge fan of the show. No Alex Baldwin or Tina Fey sightings, though.

But we did get to see the famous logo:

It was a great evening and a great way to start the new year and the new decade!

Monday, January 4, 2010

A Gastronomic Feast for the Senses!

New York is full of great food. Pizza, of course, but there's so much more. Here's a sampling from our New Year's trip.

Patzeria was recommended on some website Eric found. Right in Times Square, but on a side street, so there's wasn't a lot of foot traffic. Only seating for 6 people inside, and we missed out, so we ate outside at the street-ordering window (closed for the winter). It was my first pizza since starting Weight Watchers back in October, and it was worth the wait. Yum-o!

And yes, I had the pepperoni! It was wonderful.

New Year's night we ate at this place:

It was recommended as an affordable place to eat near Radio City Music Hall. The Boeuf Bourguignon was really good, but I could have done without the boiled potaotes (right out of the can, if I'm not mistaken). Eric had poached salmon, and he didn't much care for it. It looked a tad pale. Nicky didn't care for the chicken tenders--they were more like chicken fries. JJ just had plain noodles and he was good with that. It was a fun atmosphere, but I'm sure the food would have been better elsewhere.

Saturday we took a cab to the Greenich Village area, and ate at this pizza place:

Check this out:

The Food Network proclaimed this place the best pizza in New York! (Doesn't Nicky looked thrilled? ) I only had a chicken Caesar salad, but the 3 boys said it was definitely pretty danged good pizza!

After lunch we had a little dessert:

Rocco's was a great little bakery on Bleecker Street and they had some fabulousness!

Look at all this glorious sweet stuff!

Chocolate pudding mousse...have mercy...


Here's what we came and whites. I only had a taste. But what a taste it was! This place was scrumptious, and is on my must-see list (must-taste list?) next time I'm back in New York and not counting WW points.

Saturday night we ate at this cool little diner near Rockefeller Center. The food was pretty good and not expensive. I had a yummy pot roast with mashed potatoes and corn. Lovely. Eric had stuffed peppers that reminded him of dear old Mom. The kids had their usual staples (see above) and they both enjoyed their suppers.

Loved this metal sculpture in the restaurant:

Sunday we just ate at Wendy's. No picture needed. Ha, ha!

Next visit: more pizza!