Saturday, November 29, 2008

Little T Thankful

I was reading a friend's blog about the little things in life that we can be thankful for and how those often make life worth living. It was tumultous, emotional, and in many ways challenging Thanksgiving for me, but there are so many little things I am thankful for, and I sat and thought about them a bit and it made me smile.

For instance, I'm thankful I have my old license plates here, hanging on my bulletin board. I will never get my grandfather's mercury back, but I'll always have these plates.

I'm also thankful for:

* Loving to read
* Pasta (yes, Emma, I'm with you on 'pasketti')
* Sunlight
* Cherry Coke Zero
* The Holiday and Love Actually
* Our fluffy down comforter
* Email
* Singing
* Wegman's
* Cat naps
* My favorite web links
* The Wii
* Peanut butter cups

And a bazillion other things, both big and small.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I am an auntie

Dorothea Cicely was born this afternoon and I think she likes me a lot :-)


She was born at 4:26pm. She weight 8 pounds, 5 ounces and was 20 1/2 inches long.

Monday, November 24, 2008


I have a mere 6,000 words left to write and I just feel like every word is a battle. Plus, it doesn't help that the NaNoWriMo word count validator is docking me 60+ words from what Microsoft Word seems to think I deserve. So I've tucked a nasty little note to the Word Count validator into my book.

So far today, I've written a hilarious foreward--much more hilarious than the book in fact. I've also written a poem to pie.

All in an effort to get my word count up. I have to write about the Battle of Appomattox and I'm throwing Pep a garden party. After that, all bets are off. I have less than 1k to go before I hit 45k and I want to get there tonight.

Here's hoping!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Tagged by Cindy :-)

It's that time again!!! Tagging for a fun quiz from Cindy.

The rules:

Link to the person who tagged you.
Post the rules on your blog.
Write 6 random things about yourself.
Tag 6-ish people at the end of your post.
Let each person know he/she has been tagged.
Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

Ok, the pressure is on to find things I haven't written before... Hmmm...

1. Every year at work, we are granted sick/personal and family/personal leave. It is "use it or lose it" leave. And for the last two years, I have lost it. And it looks like I'm going to lose it again this year! WHICH SUCKS! I have nearly a week's worth of time still to use, and we can't use it over the holidays, which cuts out the last week of December. And my boss is kind of a stickler about using sick/personal for being actually sick, not for personal, and I can only take 3 days without a doctor's note. And won't it look slightly suspicious to call in sick every Friday or Monday? Hmmm... So, I dunno. I think I'm going to lose it again.

2. I took my mom to Tea Tyme today for lunch. It was the first time I've tried their Buckingham Palace tea and I loved it. I drank it all before lunch was over. This is the first time I've ever had a tea I loved that much. I love Tea Tyme, and take all my visiting girlfriends over there for tea. I'm thinking I need to get some girls together for tea sometime soon! I want to go back already. Anyone want to come visit or meet me there? :-)

3. I came to the conclusion yesterday that my house needs a decorating style. I don't know what my personal style is, and I think I should figure it out. I love my furniture, but everything is kind of a hodge-podge based on what was a) on sale, b) free, c) fit in a particular room, d) had nowhere else to go. Wouldn't it be cool if I could just actually find my own style and have everything fit?

4. My house has been really cold lately with the change in the weather here (it actually snowed on Tuesday!). I thought it was maybe my mom being more sensitive to the cold as she is really not used to it. But today even I thought it was a bit crazy, so I started investigating. I found 2 windows that were cracked open and she found 1. Can't wait to see my gas bill.

5. Since this Weight Watchers thing seems to be paying off in spades, I've made plans with Lesley that when I hit 100 pounds gone, we are doing a tandem parasail. I am super-psyched about this! Hopefully by next summer, I'll be calling her and saying, "Lesley, book the parasailing trip!!!"

6. I have to go cook supper for my hubby. We are having sloppy joes and french fries. I never ate sloppy joes growing up, but I love 'em now. We are having them tonight beacuse my mom does not like them and is staying over at my sister's so she can give the doctor a piece of her mind tomorrow. God help the doctor. I think we never got sloppy joes because my mom didn't like them. I am now making up for lost time.

Ok, so that's my six. Now I get to tag six-ish people. Only I'm going to tag 8, which is 6-ish: all the usual suspects.

1. Annette
2. Talmadge
3. Seraphim
4. Lauren
5. Nicole
6. Sarah
7. Elizabeth
8. Melissa

I would tag Manda as #9 but Cindy already got her.

Have fun! Looking forward to learning some new facts about you all :-)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Where I Find Special Events

At least once a month, I make it a point to check certain websites to see if I can find out if anyone interesting is coming to Washington DC to do signings or meet and greets. There has been a long cold stretch where no one of much interest to me has been in town, but things are starting to pick back up again.

First and foremost, a list is maintained on Geocities with celebrity book signings around the country. I scroll through looking for DC and VA primarily, although I will go to Maryland if it's someone I want to meet badly enough (I met Alan Alda the first time in Maryland). You can find the site at Right now, the only people coming through the area are Jimmy Carter on 1/28/09 in Bailey's Crossroads (I may or may not go meet him, he comes through rather regularly and I haven't managed to meet him yet, but would like to meet a President or former President regardless and better him than W.) and a Celtic group called Anuna (in Fairfax on 12/7--never heard of them and that's Wolf Trap concert day anyway). Through this site, I've gotten to meet Alan Alda, Anderson Cooper, Caroline Kennedy, Dave Barry, Bob Schieffer, Christopher Plummer, Dog the Bounty Hunter and Beth, Paula Deen, Andy Rooney, Harry Shearer, and David Lynch. The bonus of this site is that the guy who maintains it also keeps it updated in terms of which celebs are coming out with books soon, so odds are good that even if he doesn't have a listing and you see someone you're dying to meet, you can Google them and see if they're going on tour.

I look at the Smithsonian Resident Associates website, which you can find it, which is how I got to meet Alton Brown.

I visit the Politics and Prose website at a lot. They have TONS of author events, and most importantly, they have parking if you get there early. It was there I got to meet Christopher Buckley among others.

As mentioned, I visit the Sixth and I site at to see what's going on over there. I met Alan Alda a second time there, which was pretty cool. Excitingly enough, it looks like Annie Liebovitz is going to be at 6th and I on December 9th, so I may try to make that one as well. Anyone interested?

Lisner Auditorium also has great events. You can find their listings at It was here I got to see (but not meet) Mario Batali and Marisa Tomei (a pox on you, Marisa Tomei!), and meet Dog and Beth.

And of course, once yearly, there is the National Book Festival on the Mall, probably the only good thing to come from the Bush years. I hope it continues. It's a wonderful place to hear and meet great authors from around the globe. I met Mr. McFeeley from Mr. Rogers's Neighborhood, Jodi Piccoult, Khaled Hosseini, Terry Pratchett, and more at the National Book Festival. Start keeping an eye out on the Library of Congress website come August when they announce the line up (if it continues).

If all else fails and I have a favorite author I'm dying to meet, I keep tabs on their personal websites to keep an eye out for book tours. I also check Borders and Barnes and Noble's websites to see what they've got scheduled. These two methods combined is how we found the Laurie Notaro book signings. And sometimes we just get lucky. Once I was reading a newspaper and there was an advertisement that stated Peter Riegert was screening his film in Bethesda, and so we just drove on up there and met him. I love those little fortunate accidents that leads to something fantastic.

Sometimes I will go just to go, even if it's not someone I'm a huge fan of, just because I'd like to see a living legend, as it were. I enjoy Andy Rooney's essays and TV spots, but it's not like I'm a rabid fan. I just couldn't pass up the chance to meet him.

So it's a bit of a challenge sometimes, keeping up with all these sites, but ultimately it is worth it, as I've had so much fun going and hearing these people speak and then getting my ten or fifteen seconds or two minutes to actually chat with them.

Hope that helps anyone wanting to have some book signing fun in the DC area!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

An Evening with Christopher Plummer

Last night, Elizabeth (of Sanctum Santoro--see link to the right) and I met up in DC to attend an interview and book signing with Christopher Plummer. It was one of those serendipitous evenings when I happened to be striking out on my own for the first time to see an author without my sister--an occurrence that is about to become a lot more common now that she'll be a mother--and Elizabeth's husband was working hard and she was hoping to find someone to hang out with on Monday evening. Well, I told her my plans, and as it turns out, she was a fan of The Sound of Music growing up also, so our plans were fixed. She got a ticket and off we went.

We had a slight hiccup with our choice of dining locations--they were closed at dinner time! So we wound up at the local Potbelly's, and then walked to the Corcoran where we got excellent seats in the third row from the little stage.

I'd never been to the Corcoran, but it's a really lovely building and the auditorium is quite nice as well. The color blue on the walls is just gorgeous and it is small, so there is a kind of homey feeling about it. The columns around the outside of it still give off a feeling of federal grandeur, however.

Just before it started, we looked around and Elizabeth commented we looked to be about the youngest ones there, which was true and funny! I suppose most people were waiting till this evening when Mr. Plummer was giving a free reading and signing at Politics and Prose, but I was happy to have paid and gone to this far smaller gathering. Those signings of 600-700 people are fun and have a kind of camaraderie that you can really only find among devout readers and fans of a particular author--and each of those crowds is vastly different depending on who the author is that you're meeting. But I suppose in my present state of mind, I was looking for something a bit more sedate and relaxed.

I was also fortunate that Elizabeth clued me in on the fact that Mr. Plummer is not a fan of The Sound of Music, and so I could be sure not to embarrass myself by asking any questions about that.

He was interviewed by some local theater bigwig, and I'm not really sure who it was. The guy asked fairly long winded questions that led into other questions until the original question was lost, and myself, I started to wonder, "Is there a question in there somewhere?"

Mr. Plummer made one observation that really stuck with me and I've given a lot of thought to today as I've pondered the evening. He said, "I've made over a hundred movies. Not all of them were good, but I've made over a hundred." I really liked this idea that while maybe not everything I've ever done was a homerun, at least I've done it. And I can take some pride in that fact.

So there was a Q&A after the 35 minute or so interview, and the first woman to go immediately asked a question about The Sound of Music, and Mr. Plummer made a face and explained that the movie was just not his "cup of tea, so there!" and stuck out his tongue, which was quite entertaining, although the poor woman asking the question blushed violently red. There were a good number of questions and then it was time for the signing. This turned out to be just a little bit of pandemonium.

Not as bad as Dog, The Bounty Hunter pandemonium, but pandemonium nonetheless. The table where you could buy books was right next to the signing table, and people who already had books were lined up in front of that, where people (like me) who were trying to buy books had to cut in front of them to buy them and then cut back out to get on line for the signing.

Finally, as we were nearing the conclusion of the event, everyone kind of "got it" and the signing line moved in front of the table where Mr. Plummer was seated and the buying line moved in front of the table where the books were on sale. Elizabeth went first so I could take her picture and then she took the camera and got some pictures of me, so that was pretty cool. And I managed to get one good picture of Mr. Plummer himself, as you see above.

It was a pretty neat signing, all things considered. He's something of a legend, and an engaging speaker, even at 78 years old. He was witty and fun, creating many laughs and giving lots to think about. I look forward to reading his book, In Spite of Myself, and have already skimmed a good bit of it and looked at all the pictures.

Next up on my busy DC cultural schedule is the Sixth and I Synagogue hosting Michael Ian Black, the one regular member of the cast of Ed that I didn't get to meet back in the day. He is doing a show at Sixth and I with a couple of friends, and I've got a ticket for that one. I will be going to that on December 2nd. My new culture buddy, Elizabeth, isn't able to attend, but if you are in the area and are free and would like to go with me, you can get a ticket by visiting the Sixth and I's website. I will go early to procure good seats :-)

Saturday Cleaning

As most of you know by now, 2008 hasn't been really much of my year in certain regards. Sure, there are good things happening, most notably the adoption and the weight loss journey, but there are other things happening that make me sit back and go, "Hmmm, how could I possibly have pissed off God this badly?"

So Friday (I think), I got a call from my mom that she was coming early as Judy's baby is due any minute (we think she may have started labor this evening, in fact, so stay tuned for updates). So Saturday I decided was a good time to clean house.

My house was starting to reflect my general mood--a total mishmash of incongrous thoughts and ideas. There were a bazillion tchotchkes on the windowsills, tons of pictures all over the mantle and living room, posters and postcards and paintings and wreaths and even my old NYS license plates on the walls.

As I sat around, I realized that because in general, I like things to be pretty clutter-free, my house was not helping me feel a whole lot better.

So I started wondering how I'd feel if I took down or put away exactly half of all the stuff that was out.

I don't think I did that throughout the house, but I can guarantee that in the family room, I did. I cleaned off the windowsills and put everything away, then dusted thoroughly. Stuff came off the walls--posters and postcards, wreaths and the license plates gone.

At first, it was kind of a shock--I was thinking, "Damn! Where's all my stuff!?" but 4 days later, I can say that it has really helped with my peace of mind. I feel so much better now that all the stuff is put away. The curtains are back open, so it's no longer like living in a cave. I just have to find room for my mom's stuff for her dog so he can't get into it, but so that we can have our dining room table back.

I plan to similarly clean house in other areas of the home. As we continue to plan and prepare for Baby Kosior's someday arrival, just the idea that in moving the rabbit downstairs, I could get the baby room done the way I want it and move all the baby stuff upstairs and out of our guest room makes me feel free. Hopefully we'll be able to accomplish this as soon as the Thanksgiving rush is over.

On top of Freedom Friday, it all feels pretty darn good.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Freedom Friday

Freedom!!! Freedom!!!

The General and I paid off all our bills and sent out all our checks yesterday. We are free from all those little bills that sometimes pile up in the face of big expenses. We officially re-own our teeth, his toe, and my knee. We have paid off the last of the adoption expenses we had to put on the credit card. We have zero balances on the credit cards for the first time in 3 months.

Yahoo!!! Feels so good.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Ok, We're Going to Make You All Sick

But the General just sent me his list of 86 things he loves about me. I was going to bump my list to 100 this morning, because after we spent the day together, he did about a million more things I totally love, and then last night when I finally came back to bed at 2am after one dandy of a crying jag, he sat up with me, crying too, and we had such a good talk that I didn't even care it was 2AM. But now I kind of like that 86 is a magical number. So I'm leaving my list alone. And this is his 86 things he loves about me. (Excuse me while I blush)

Why I love my darling wife

1. She found me on the Internet after a terrible relationship, and when I hugged her for the first time I knew that she was the one.
2. She knows just what to do and when to do it.
3. She throws her clothes on the floor, and when hearing that I'll be doing the laundry, puts them in the hampers.
4. On the weekends in the afternoon, I know that I can always find her in our bed sleeping nice and I cuddle with her.
5. She is a wonderful cook.
6. She is my best friend and lifelong companion.
7. At the end of a difficult day, she always makes things better and after about 10 minutes, I am a new man.
8. I love her wonderful scent.
9. I love the fact that her skin is so soft.
10. I love that she is a great writer and likes to read her works to me.
11. She is genuine, reliable, and responsible.
12. She will watch a football game with me and get excited about it.
13. She puts up with my constant need to do better and better at work, including moving to the DC area.
14. I love that she is taking care of herself both physically and mentally, and not letting anybody push her around.
15. She is a strong woman, and is good with doing things around the house.
16. She writes good letters to places where we get bad service.
17. She has a wonderful singing voice and I love to come home to it around the holidays.
18. I love that she reads to me, and we have shared so many experiences doing that.
19. I love that when during the winter when I lift the covers up, she says in her sleepy voice, "don't let the cold air in."
20. She makes me coffee whenever I ask her to and fixes it JUST RIGHT.
21. She lets me play in my office with my radios and computers.
22. She puts up with my fussy and mundane eating habits.
23. She is a great rehab teacher who cares about her clients.
24. She calls me a "hot dog" when I send straight-forward and detailed e-mails.
25. She is very technical, if I show her how to do something on the computer, she always remembers for the next time.
26. I love that she leaves stuff in the cupholders in our car, sometimes for weeks.
27. She chose me, even with all of the problems that I have, when it would have been easy to pick somebody else.
28. She got pissed when I lost my job at Digitas.
29. She knows how I am feeling without me even saying a word.
30. I love it when she puts on her robe and gets all nice and warm.
31. I love it when she stays in her nightgown all day.
32. I love it when she gets FIRED UP about DUBYAH.
33. She has broadened my horizons and opened my world to so many different things and experiences.
34. I love the fact that it takes her a while to get going in the morning, and she gets upset if somebody tries to change the routine.
35. She makes the holidays so special with all the decorations and good food in the house.
36. Whenever I ask her, she will get up early and take me to the van pool or the train
37. I love that her family has brought me so much joy and happiness.
38. I love that she can't believe when I don't know who actors and actresses are.
39. I love it when sometimes a few hours after she gets up, she takes a little snooze.
40. I love that she is so gentle and caring with kids, and know that she will be a great mother.
41. I love it when I do the laundry, all of her clothes are inside out.
42. I love it when she takes me on trips to places that we've never been.
43. I love it when she gets bent out of shape during the summer when I tan.
44. I love that she has the softness and kindness of her mother, and the hard work and determination of her father.
45. She has stuck with me during very difficult times, like losing my job and the uncertainty with my hearing back in 2001.
46. I love the fact that she tries to keep track of all of my friends and usually does a good job at remembering who is who.
47. She knows how important it is for me to serve my country, and that I take the badge and its responsibilities very seriously.
48. I love that she gets excited on Thursday nights to hear Jack KB4XF on the ham radio net.
49. I love that she knows how important my coworkers are to me, and always makes them brownies.
50. I love that she is a tough lady who will do whatever is required to get something done, and doesn't whine about it.
51. She plans gatherings very well and makes sure that people always have a good time.
52. I love that her kind heart warms up my life and our home to everyone who visits.
53. I love that she got me to eat Chinese food after many years, and now I like to go to the Chinese buffet, even if all I get is chicken.
54. I love that she is very organized and makes lots of lists, so nothing is forgotten.
55. I love that she has brought her friend Joe into our lives, who I love like a brother.
56. I love it when she gives me a nice smooth, clean, shave.
57. I love that she has fun playing her Wii, and sings while she's playing.
58. I love that she called me a "god damn stubborn Polack" one night, which of course she was right.
59. I love that she jokes around with me as much as I do with her.
60. I love that she lets me call her all kinds of nicknames.
61. I love that she has taught me that my way isn't the "only" way, and gotten me to think about others more.
62. I love that back in 1999 when we were in the truck heading back to Syracuse, after I said "you're my girl", she said "I will always be your girl."
63. I love it when she buys me candy bars as a surprise.
64. I love that she is very talented in many areas.
65. I love it when she tries new recipes and they are so good.
66. I love that she took me to New York twice and we went all over the place.
67. I love that when she gets up, she gets out of bed and doesn't put the covers back, just leaves them the way they were.
68. I love that she has made me a better person.
69. I love that she lets me hug Judith and rub her feet.
70. I love when we sit down to dinner on the weekends, she just hands me the vitamin, because she knows that I only take them during the week.
71. I love that she now has breakfast with me, even though she isn't a big breakfast person.
72. She puts up with my singing and whistling, even early in the morning.
73. I love that she wears her clothes until they fall apart.
74. I love that she is very creative and artsy.
75. I love it when she gets excited about the Red Sox.
76. I love walking on the beach and going in the ocean with her, and hugging her underwater.
77. I love it when she answers the phone in a really happy voice.
78. I love that she let's me do stuff with the best father-in-law that anybody could ever ask for.
79. I love it when she always makes me pick where we go out for dinner.
80. I love that I can talk to her about anything that I am feeling and she will always be honest with me.
81. I love it that she thinks my friend Ken is THE BOMB.
82. I love that she always believes in me no matter what.
83. I love that she calls the GPS "Jane."
84. I love to play "do you know this song" with her when driving and listening to the radio.
85. I love that she doesn't take 2 hours to take a shower and get ready, 20 minutes and that's it.
86. I love that she has and will continue to thoroughly enrich my life.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Why I Love My Husband

I woke up this morning and rolled out of bed--I couldn't sleep. I gazed on that sleeping man next to me, and I started feeling all mushy and sentimental like. And I started mentally ticking off all the things about him that I love. So I thought I'd post it here, just so I could show my love for him. He deserves it for putting up with me.

Yeah, I'm feelin' all mushy and sentimental today. It's a nice feeling.

1. I love that when he is in bed and it's too hot for him under the covers but he knows that I like to snuggle up to him and get nice and toasty warm that he just barely sneaks out of the blankets so that his back is exposed and keeps him nice and cool, while I still get to snuggle into him and keep nice and warm.

2. I love the way he tells me that he doesn't think it's funny when he makes me yell "SIR, YES, SIR!" in response to a question he's posed, but then when I say it, he laughs like hell.

3. I love the noise he makes when he puts in his hearing aids.

4. I love that when he gets dressed in the morning, before he buttons and zips his pants, he tucks in the pockets and makes sure they're just so.

5. I love his smile.

6. I love that when we discuss bad habits, he says, "I know, it's gross" and then he laughs like hell.

7. I love when he says, "That's it!" and smacks something to make a point. As in, "We're going to Papa Gino's and that's it!" and then he smacks his hand and we go to Papa Gino's.

8. I love when he attempts to demonstrate how big or small something is. If it's big, he throws his arms wide. If it's little, he pats his hands together very gently. Oh my God, do I love this.

9. I love that he threatens to make stew out of TomTom and then I get TomTom and put him in The General's arms and he buries his face in TomTom's fur and says, "Oh my God, he smells so good." I'll be stew before that rabbit is.

10. I love the Google face.

11. I love that he gags when touching pumpkin guts. I don't know why, but it cracks me up.

12. I love that he does the laundry.

13. I love that he comes home and does everything in order: lunchbag near the microwave, cane by the front door, upstairs where the wallet goes in the caddy on the bureau, keys in another section, badges get all wrapped up, and then it's time for a trip to the bathroom. Without fail, this happens every single work day.

14. I love that when he gets dressed in a button down shirt, he buttons every button, then smooths them all down nice, making sure they're in a perfect line, then puts on his pants, and rechecks the buttons to make sure they didn't go anywhere and they're in line with the zipper on his pants.

15. I love the "Susan is a bigfoot" song that he sings in the shower.

16. I love that if he doesn't like something I've made for dinner and I ask him if he wants more, he diplomatically replies, "I think I'll just have a snack later."

17. I love that my driving doesn't bother him in the least.

18. I love that he lets me be the boss when I want to be, and lets me think I'm the boss at all other times.

19. I love that he will come streaking down the stairs from the radio tower yelling, "I got the Canary Islands" only to return a few minutes later to say, "I think I already had the Canary Islands."

20. I love that he never lets me quit, even if I am begging to give up. Quit is not in his vocabulary.

21. I love that he believes in such big dreams for himself and he truly believes that his own success is inevitable. He makes me believe it too.

22. I love that he meets every person convinced that they're going to love him/us. Where I think everyone I meet is trying to figure out why they shouldn't like me, he's convinced that everyone on the planet thinks we're awesome. What a great attitude!

23. I love our 7:30AM Monday phone calls. They make Mondays more tolerable.

24. I love that he does his 25 on the treadmill, gets off dripping with sweat, hurls himself on the couch and yells, "That must have been a mile!"

25. I love that he cleans the bathrooms.

26. I love that he thinks my parents are the cats' meow and he loves having coffee with my mom and pizza with my dad.

27. I love that he calls all his female friends his 'honeys' and refers to them as "My Honey Debbie" or "My Honey Elizabeth" as in "How's My Honey Lesley today?"

28. I love that he is convinced I have written a major bestseller.

29. I love that he screams and yells when the football game is on, and then he comes downstairs grumbling, "Susan, they played like little kids."

30. I love that he waited up for me last night.

31. I love that he tucks me in in the mornings before he goes to work.

32. I love that he supports my participation in the book club and knows how much it means to me.

33. I love the compliments he gives me when he really, really, really loves something I've made or done. I can live off those for a year.

34. I love when he gets excited and does the excited hand thing.

35. I love when I point out the excited hand thing and he says, "Jesus, I must look like a dumbass" and then vows never to do it again, only to do it again next time he gets excited.

36. I don't know why, but I love the hell out of it when he calls me "Cheap Cherepon".

37. I love that when I tell him, "Oh, that cologne smells so good", the next day he about takes a bath in it for my benefit.

38. I love that if I drop something in the toilet, he will fish it out and then yell, "There!"

39. I love that when I want to do something and he's not too sure he wants me to do it, he says, "Suuuuuuuuuusan, I dunno about this!" and then lets me do it anyway. (ie buying a ticket to go meet Christopher Plummer next week)

40. I love that he let me pick out our baby names.

41. I love that with all his heart he wishes I could have a cat even though his allergies prevent it.

42. I love his tolerance for pain, like when he rips off his toenail and sticks his foot under boiling hot water to wash it off and then dumps rubbing alcohol on it for good measure and announces it's never felt better. Meanwhile, I'm about ready to faint.

43. I love that he loves to read with me.

44. I love the silly little emails he sends me about 50 times a day--usually one or two words or a sentence, but they always make me laugh.

45. I love what he writes on cards when he has flowers or strawberries delivered to me.

46. I love that he is not going to let a Valentine's Day go by without me getting chocolate covered strawberries.

47. I love that all I have to do is tap his arm three times when I get into bed and he rolls over and lets me do the holding.

48. I love that if he doesn't want me to do the holding and he doesn't want to do the rolling, he says, "I just got comfortable, I'm not doing it!" in his sleepy voice.

49. I love that if there is nothing else to do, he will sit upstairs, cranking his music and singing to beat the band.

50. I love that durning NaNo, he will yell, "one thousand words!" and I will actually go downstairs and write 1000 words.

51. I love when something goes wrong and he yells, "Oh for cryin' out loud".

52. I love his little New England accent.

53. I love when he gets all full of himself and sends out a hot dog email reading something to the effect of, "Excellence in defense of the nation".

54. I love the "Appreciate your 100% cooperation and support" emails in response to me saying, "Yes, I will go to the drug store and get you some more band aids."

55. I love his love of ketchup and tomato sauce, but not tomatoes.

56. I love when he tries to be diplomatic about something. Like the other night, I made a big pot of homemade spaghetti sauce and I suggested we have some on our pizza the other night and he said, "Oh, it was good, hon, but don't we have some Ragu? I mean, your sauce is really good, but I don't know if it will work on pizza." That just cracked me up.

57. I love that he's not hot on ice cream here at home, but he loves eating ice cream at Friendly's, DQ, Maggie Moos, or Carls.

58. I love his love of french fries and mashed potatoes and occasionally baked potatoes, but never potato salad.

59. I love that if I ask, he'll bring me a big glass of ice water, even though he and I both know I won't drink more than a sip of it.

60. I love that if I drink something the wrong way and start choking, he yells, "Jesus, wrong pipe!" and starts laughing if I'm coughing more than 2 minutes, but he tries to hide the fact that he's laughing because he doesn't want me to feel bad.

61. I love that every time I have a bad day at work, he tells me, "Susan, just go in there and quit. We'll make it happen."

62. I love when I am reading a book to him that has a real sad ending and I'm bawling my eyes out just trying to get through each word and he is sitting there laughing, but again, trying not to show it.

63. I love that every Friday night, he places his bet on how he thinks I've done that week for Weight Watchers, and then he waits for me to get home on Saturday and says, "How'd ya do?" the minute I walk in the door.

64. I love when he feels his spot at the table and says, "Jesus, I've made a mess!"

65. I love that we have similar views on religion and politics.

66. I love that he doesn't agree with me 100% of the time, and isn't afraid to say so.

67. I love hearing his watch click shut after he's checked the time.

68. I love that he likes to get everything done right now (!) while I'm such a procrastinator.

69. I love going to concerts with him and singing and dancing with him all night long.

70. I love that he's not afraid to show his emotions.

71. He makes the world a better place for me to live.

72. He's never too busy to take my calls.

73. He will do whatever is in his power to make me feel better if I'm having a bad day.

74. We never go past a Godiva Chocolates without at least getting a little something :-)

75. For some reason, I love the fact that he loves Swedish fish. I don't know why, but I just think it's adorable.

76. I love when he goes grocery shopping with me and he just follows along behind the cart as happy as a clam.

77. I love when we're in the grocery store and he whispers, "I wanna get Susan some flowers."

78. I love his nicknames for everyone, like "Little Anne" and "The Chief".

79. I love when I tell him to smile for a picture and he makes that horrible growling, teeth-baring smile. It cracks me up. And then he whines, "I can't smile on command!" So I say, "Cookies!" and he starts smiling like a champ.

80. I love that we come up with a vacation plan in general like "Let's go to Las Vegas" and then he lets my OCD take over and plan the whole thing down to the millisecond and he follows along happily, proclaiming it to be the best vacation we ever took.

81. I love that he loves the beach as much as I do.

82. I love that he doesn't necessarily want to stay in DC forever either and we can dream of a retirement elsewhere.

83. I love his optimism that I have as good a memory as he does.

84. I love that he reads these blogs and regurgitates them back to me.

85. I love that he thanks my friends for being my friends. Because I really am that hopeless that gratitude must be shown!

86. I love that when I mentioned to him today that I was going to make up this list, he said, "It's about time you posted something about me" and then he gets pissed off when I do post something about him. That just cracks me up double.

Well, ok, I could go on and on, and maybe I'll do some more later :-) But basically, marriage is made up of all the little things that add up to more and more years with Mr. Right. And all these little things and more add up to almost ten years now. Hard to believe, but I can hardly wait to see where the next ten take us.

WOW! Sitemeter fun

I got my Sitemeter report today and I always enjoy looking at how people find my blog. Well, it looks like someone was doing a Google search on "Debbie screws Susan" and my blog came up.

I don't know how or why, and I don't think I want to know what that person was looking for.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Today: How It Went

Today actually went a bit better than expected. My first appointment went OK. I am so nervous around this client that I just want to have a heart attack and keel over myself when I get the perception that said client is struggling in the least. Said client had an accident last time I did a lesson with them and now I am so nervous around them that I can barely function. We kept it short and sweet and I stepped in to help out with packaging issues and afterwards I sat and talked with them for a long time, I think so that I would feel better about them before I left.

Afterwards, I had a few minutes to spare and needed to use a facility, and the nicest one where I was is at Borders Books. In fact, it's probably the nicest Borders I've ever been to. While I was there, I decided to grab an audio book. I re-read the Guernsey book, all my Janet Evanovich audiobooks, and re-listened to Prairie Home Companion and Car Talk CD's twice each, plus for some reason I had a Rick and Bubba CD which I listened to twice. I was getting desperate--sitting in the car quietly was just making me think about stuff I didn't want to think about and I swear to God if B101.5 doesn't start playing some variety, I'm going to rip out my own ear drums. So it was time for something new.

I have an audiobook rule: Nothing abridged and nothing that costs more than $20. It took me a while to find it, but it was there: Stuff White People Like. There is a blog at which the book grew out of. I wasn't really sure what to make of it. The description sounded funny though, and it was 5 hours worth of audio, so I decided to take a crack at it.

Well, there was not a single thing on that list of stuff white people like that didn't immediately call to mind something in my own home, a friend of mine, a family member, etc. I was about screaming with laughter. I am only disc 2, but I have to say, this thing is brilliant. If I hadn't already selected a book for book club, this book would be my 2009 pick.

The part that really struck me was about white people loving their kitchen gadgets. And in particular, the bit about the Kitchen Aid stand mixer. Forgive me for stealing their thunder just a bit, but here is the direct passage from the book and website:

But in order for them to truly enter into whitedom, they need to own the holy grail of white kitchens - the kitchen aid stand mixer (right). They will match this mixer to their kitchen’s color scheme and it will make up the focal point. And much like many religious artifacts, it will remain untouched for months and even years, sitting on the counter to be admired as a testament to their lifestyle.

I remember like it was yesterday when my Kitchen Aid stand mixer arrived from for my birthday last year. I ordered a cherry red one, since I like having red accents in my kitchen. I drove in from work and saw it sitting on the front porch and literally screamed. I nearly forgot to put the brakes on and shut the car off before dashing over to pick it up and bring it lovingly inside.

And then, it sat in the box on the kitchen floor for a week. I walked past the box and patted it lovingly. I stared at the writing on the box. Everyone was asking me, "When are you going to take it out of the box?" I had to wait for the right moment: the weekend. When I finally unpacked it and lifted it from its cardboard womb, it was with all the reverence of a mother being handed her child for the first time. I gently put it on the table and moved from chair to chair, studying it from every angle. I lifted the attachments, feeling their weight in my hands. I washed and dried the bowl lovingly. I flipped the switches back and forth, tested the lock that prevents the mixer from lifting. I made space on my counter and washed the counter down as if I were preparing the area for surgery. And then I gently and lovingly carried that mixer to its new home. And there is not a day goes by that I don't look at that mixer and it makes me happy. That mixer is one of the best things about my house. There are days I think I love it as much as the man who gave it to me: the Sugar Bear.

So the book caused me to think of this and other happy white things, have some good laughs, and get on about my day. My other appointment went very well. I actually spent much of that time laughing my head off with the client, who I am teaching to sew. If you know me, you know what a laugh that is. I have not the first clue how to sew a thing. So we were working with plastic canvas to get the feel of sewing in our fingers, and the canvas kept splitting, the yarn kept getting tangled, and at one point, I think we had sewn our projects together.

It was a long drive home after 5pm, and by the time I got home, I was so exhausted I just walked right upstairs, crawled into bed and slept for 45 minutes. I had to go to WalMart to get rabbit food and a new toothbrush for the General, and then I stopped off at Sheetz and got some dinner--I was not cooking tonight, no way. We had a nice dinner and then I came downstairs to do my aerobics and do some NaNo writing. I'm up over 18K words so far. I don't think it's any good, in particular, but it's there and I'm not worried about good, bad, or indifferent.

So in short, today was better than expected, and that is a good thing. Tomorrow I have to work in Springfield a good part of the day, which is going to SUCK. However, my office mate, Kris, is going to be working with me and she was a big Bush and McCain supporter, and I have been waiting for four solid years for an opportunity to gloat. I'll try not to be too obnoxious.

I am still really tired, so I"m going back upstairs to cuddle up with the mister and get some sleep. Thanks to all for the outpouring of concern. It was not a great day, but it was a good day, and that is all I wanted.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

This is Not Good

I don't normally post this type of thing on this blog, but... well, if you know, you get it...

I'm starting to feel tremendously depressed. Despite my good start to NaNo, it is not proving to be the distraction I had hoped for, and my fondest wish right now is to crawl into bed and stay there for a couple of millenia. Tomorrow is going to be an incredibly stressful day at work and I am not looking forward to it. I have been dreading it for 2 weeks.

I'm hoping that today's blues are due in large part that I am running on approximately 4 hours of sleep. I hope that as I go to bed now, I'll wake up in the morning feeling refreshed and rejuvinated and maybe ready to take on the world.

I've spent much of this evening choking on the lump in my throat and I hope that when I turn in for the night, it just doesn't all start coming out and I can't sleep for the crying. I feel so many things, I can't even put them into words. Ashamed, apprehensive, sleazy, annoyed, frustrated, tired, angry, sad, scared, and anxious.

I hope I feel better tomorrow.


Last night was a night I won't soon forget. When the California polls closed and they could officially project Obama's win, I burst into tears. For the first time in 8 years, I felt hopeful again and it felt so good. I had forgotten how good hope could feel.

I stayed up till 1:00 am, celebrating with friends near and far via Twitter and AIM. I danced in my backyard in the rain and cried on the phone with family. It was a moment where I literally did not know what to do with myself. Well, ok, that's not entirely true, I gloated. I wrote pithy stuff on my Twitter. I drank a swig of Cherry Coke Zero.

This was a scathing damnation of George W. Bush and what he stood for. America united against him and a continuation of his policies. The message was sent, "Not no, but hell no." And it feels so good, it just feels so good.


Of course, it wouldn't be me if I didn't have a little something to complain about. I really could have done without Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton being put on screen by both MSNBC and CNN. Race baiters. Can't stand either one of them, and I personally think they are a symbol of division much more than a symbol of the unity that the country displayed in voting booths yesterday. It wasn't their moment and I hardly think we needed to see either one of them. So, BOOOO!!! to MSNBC and CNN for immediately cutting to them so we could see them trumping themselves up, crying, etc. etc. And I hope they won't be around Washington any more than is strictly necessary--which in my view, neither one of them has anything to offer, so they're not necessary at all.

Monday, November 03, 2008

This Year's Inspired Halloween Costumes

Every year, my Halloween partying friends post beautiful pictures of themselves dressed to the 9's in fabulous costumes with wonderful make up and clever themes to their costumes.

The General and I don't have time for that. We want quick and easy, down and dirty, and most importantly, cheap.

This year, however, costuming was important due to the Melting Pot's 25 dollar "gift card" (really a coupon) if you showed up dressed in costume.

I really sweated what we should go as, and I think you will agree I made the correct decision.

What the hell are we, you ask?

Paper or Plastic.

I only hope I get away as quick and cheap next year.

Mark Your Calendar Again, Sweeties

This year's annual Holiday Sing-a-Long at Wolf Trap is Sunday, December 7th. Sometimes they collect for Toys for Tots and sometimes for a food bank, so I'll keep you posted on which it'll be.

However, I'll be there, literally with bells on. And of course, we go for pizza afterwards. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

A Petty Annoyance

Today I was thinking about the insignificant things that annoy me. And then I went grocery shopping. And while I was grocery shopping and feeling good about life and using my coupons (saved $24 today, which is a big improvement for me), I went into the next aisle without thinking about it. You all know the next aisle. The aisle where they put the stuff that is "seasonal". And my local Giant is loaded to the rafters with fruitcake and gingerbread houses and Christmas lights and Christmas cards and tinsel and stocking stuffers.

You have GOT to be kidding me. It's November 2. And while I get as excited for Christmas as the next Christian--if not more--we have a perfectly respectable holiday still to come. I've never loved Thanksgiving--all that fuss for what basically amounts to a big meal, and frankly I'm having a lot of trouble finding things to be thankful for (a healthy family and a good job just ain't cuttin' it this year, sorry), so I'll probably enjoy Thanksgiving a whole lot less than normal this year.

But I'm not willing to skip it altogether. And every year I rant about this and every year those bastards in every store put up the Christmas stuff.

And even worse, is already playing Christmas ads on TV! Pre-Halloween--on Wednesday I saw their ad. I know it was Wednesday because Wednesday is the only night of the week I watch television. (Anyone else take as much great delight in Jimmy Olson getting the boot off Top Design Wednesday as I did?)


Thank you.

Oh, and I also hate it when someone tells you that you're going to love something and you just HAVE to watch/read/taste/listen to something and then they tell you the entire plot/flavor/life story/melody of the thing and wonder why you have no interest in watching/reading/tasting/listening to whatever it was they're talking about. Um, why bother? I've been given a full run down. I don't need to.

Thank you.

I also hate having to be firm with people who jerk me around for setting up appointments and crap, and I finally get a little firm with them and they set up something and I go to their house and they turn out to be the nicest little old lady or little old man you ever wanted to meet and you feel like a load of crap.

Thank you.

Finally, I hate that I have such a limited attention span with NaNoWriMo that I have to sit here with a timer on my desk and force myself to write in 10 minute spurts. Because if I don't put that timer on, I sit here playing solitaire for 2 hours and my word count goes nowhere. How I ever got 8000 words done yesterday, I do not know.

Thank you.


Yesterday for lunch, I was eating the General's salad from the Melting Pot. For some reason, it had bleu cheese on it. I thought I had picked it all off, but sadly, I was mistaken and got a full bite.

My question is this:

Why the heck does anyone eat bleu cheese? It smells like vomit and tastes like moldy sneakers.