Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

"If every time it came to the New Year, you had to change everything, like buy new dogs, buy new cats, buy new clothes, buy new everything, that would be very annoying. I would hate to change everything, I like things this way, we have some very rare stuff."-Griffin

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Christmas Eve is here, and it's getting very festive at our house!

Yesterday I was in the kitchen w/a million eggs. Bûche de Fug...


Now I'm off to the market to get everything for our supper.
Love to my friends around the world, and sleep well tonight, knowing the world is being protected from aliens by this band of brothers.

Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

So happy!

Just looking at these pictures calms me down.

Lucky loves so much to swim and romp around on the beach. Troy took him for a boat ride and then they combed the little island in the bay. I should have gone! But I was at home stressing about stupid stuff -- such a waste of time!
Lucky came home so content, and when I saw these pictures, I realized I'd made the wrong choice today (and so many days!). When will I learn?
It makes me happy to see my beautiful, loving dog -- who does nothing but give me happiness -- so happy!
Pure pleasure.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Haute water

The repair of our fridge coincided with the discovery of this beautiful Christian Lacroix-designed Evian bottle at Target.

Isn't it pretty? And so cold & delicious.
I remain committed to San Pellegrino (bit of an addict), but do have a weak spot for French luxury goods.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Friday Friday

The nutcracker.

Here's Friday frozen in an "Uh-oh" moment (that's similar to an Oprah "Ah-ha" moment) after frolicking with a hazelnut from the holiday nut bowl. He's not really sure about its legitimacy as a chew toy -- is he going to get a lecture?
What he should be pondering is whether or not it's a great idea to wake me up at 3:16 a.m. to go outside on a Sniffabout.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Distillery update

Troy & his Dad have been working like madmen this month! Here's Jim working on the platform & stairs that they're building behind the tanks.

Lucky & Grif guarding the lumber.

Yesterday, Troy had his final interview w/the Feds in the process of being granted a license. If all goes well, we may have rum by January.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My hero!!

The fridge is fixed!!!!
I am SO happy.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Bad haircuts

Poor Bert & Ernie!
They got haircuts this morning. Bad haircuts.
Look at Bert's face: slightly traumatized. I think we've all been there.
The sad part is, I couldn't say, "Don't worry! It'll grow back!"
Ernie looks like the Marc Jacobs of Sesame Street.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Here we go!

Packages are arriving and departing. Bubble wrap turns out to be one of those very simple pleasures we've been discussing. I should just fill everyone's stocking with reams of it!

Baking biscotti.

Pretty plants & shiny ornaments.

Lights shimmering & reflecting.

Palms bedecked.

The nutcracker.

Arches strewn with lights.

Books we're putting on hold until after the 25th.

It's getting exciting!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Lucky says

What's with all the Friday bullshit?

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Day 18, no fridge

Continuing on the theme of a simple life, we're now on the 18th day of having no refrigerator. I'm not handling it as well as Ma Ingalls would.

Troy has taken it upon himself to order the Mother Board, which cost $100 -- not $700 as the Scary Repairman reported when he advised me to authorize his $1,000 repair job. Scary Repairman was the second "professional" to check out the fridge. I was just glad when he left that he didn't kill me and hide my body in the empty side-by-side.
The first repairman, Sheldon, seemed definitely more trustworthy, but he was just in way over his head. He looked at the compressor for an hour and just kept shaking his head. Towards the end of his visit, he asked Troy if we were church-goers. At the time, I couldn't figure out what he was getting at -- was he wondering why we have so many kids? Now I'm starting to think it was his subtle way of suggesting that we pray for a miracle.
The third repairman arrived when I was just pulling out of the driveway. Troy was home, and when I saw that repairman's truck pull up, I burned rubber down the road because I couldn't handle being involved in another clusterfuck. When I returned, he was gone and Troy said that I hadn't missed anything; #3 was clueless, too.
I know it's probably hard to muster sympathy, b/c you're probably thinking: why don't you just go buy a new refrigerator?
But you see, the one we have is built in, and so it's a strange size, and it's significantly cheaper to fix it rather than replace it. I'm constantly trying to pare down, and can't bring myself to buy a second refrigerator (assuming this main one can be saved).
So every day, we buy a bag of ice for $1.79 and I've pretty much thrown out all the condiments, as time has ticked by, save for the Tabasco sauce. Worcestershire sauce, and soy sauce. I buy frozen items that the boys like in small packages (like blueberries) so they can eat them right away. No storing!

Troy confessed the other night that he kind of likes the simplicity of living out of the cooler. Any charm has worn off for me. Tonight we're going to a party and I know there's going to be some good food passed around, like crabcakes, but I am most excited about the prospect of drinking a cold drink with fresh ice cubes that don't come out of a dubious plastic bag. I just want to shovel clean ice down my gullet. (You know how we Americans are about our icy cold drinks -- if I'm going to quaff a room-temperature beverage, I want it to be because I'm sitting on a tuffet in Morocco.)
The mother board is supposed to arrive Wednesday, and the hope is that it is the one & only board that needs replacing, not it + any of the other four boards in the compressor.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Friday Friday Pt. II

After experiencing my shopping paralysis, I was telling my friend that I wish we could just give everyone we liked a pretty pencil. And a book & an orange. Just a nice way to to say, "Merry Christmas."
When my Mom was a little girl, one Christmas, during WWII, all she and her three sisters got was an orange each!
I love reading Laura Ingalls Wilder's, "Christmas in the Big Woods," to my boys, b/c everything is so beautiful and simple. For Christmas, the girls get red mittens & peppermint sticks -- and Laura gets a doll. And they're all so happy!

Friday thinks pencils are fun & tasty.

Friday Friday

Friday and I are overwhelmed by Christmas shopping. Last night I got stuck in a loop online, and somehow ended up going through a string of preppy blogs, where lots of things are monogrammed...and clipboards seem to be popular. What do they do with those clipboards? Make lists? I need to get organized!
I don't know why this vid comes up black, but press play for commentary.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Cardmember since last week

Today, I took the boys out to lunch and to see Santa. We went to the Nordstrom cafe -- where nothing bad can ever happen! -- and had a very pleasant meal together. Everyone ate their food, nobody spazzed out, and it was all good. Well, I did have to threaten them through clenched teeth several times to "stop it!" And I ordered a Chardonnay alongside my peach iced tea. But other than that, everything went smoothly.
At Nordstrom cafes, you order at the outset and pay, then you're seated, and at the end of the meal, your server, with whom you have minimal contact, gives you a copy of the bill as a friendly little reminder, and you leave a tip.
I only had three dollars on me, but I knew that my 5-year-old had a pocket full of dollar bills, so I asked him if I could have two. He said no.
So I asked again.
He said no.
So I pleaded, and promised that I'd pay him back when we got home. "Just two dollars!" I whined.
I could've gotten a billion-dollar bail-out easier from some people. We stared each other down, me furrowing my brow.
In a sort of exasperated manner, he reached into his trouser pocket and said, "Hang on, let me get my credit card."
He had one of those fake American Express cards that they send you when they solicit your business in the mail! And it was platinum. I wonder if he can get us fake concert tickets to a fake Streisand show.

Just to clarify: the goal of the day was to shop for Christmas presents, so his money was from his birthday stash -- all $1 dollar bills + the AmEx Platinum. Yet the boys deemed Nordstrom and the entire International Plaza, save for RadioShack, unsuitable and boring. "There's only clothes here. Aren't we going to Target?"