Friday, November 26, 2010

Flashback Friday: Thanksgivings of the Past

Since I did not do the obligatory Thanksgiving Post yesterday, and it is Flashback Friday, I thought I would take you a on a little journey through my Thanksgivings.

From about age 8 through my junior year in college, Thanksgiving consisted of piling into my dad's Honda Accord at 5am on Wednesday morning and driving 8.5 straight hours from Portland, OR to my grandparents' home in Vacaville, CA.  Until I turned 10, it was just my dad and my brother and me.  We fit quite nicely in the car.  When I turned 10, however, my dad married my step-mom who also had a daughter, and from then on it was all five of us crammed in the car, with feet on coolers (so that we wouldn't have to stop) and all of us kids with our backpacks full of car entertainment, all trying not to talk to each other.  Good times.

Once we arrived, we were met by my dad's two sisters and their children (my cousins).  Our Thanksgivings were fairly formal - we all got dressed up, the table was set with my grandmother's finest china a silver, there were place-cards with our names (designed by my cousins and me, of course) and we all waited until all 20 of us were served before we began eating.  Afterward, we changed into PJ's and lounged around the house, finally crashing on the floor on piles of old couch cushions and even older air mattresses that held air for approximately 30 minutes before beginning the slow deflating process that lasted until morning.  After enjoying family togetherness for the following two days, we piled back into the Honda for the 8.5 hour turned 11 hour car ride back to Portland.  Thanksgiving was pretty much the only time that I saw my cousins each year, and was one of the two times I saw my grandparents.  That is probably one of the reasons why I love the holiday so much.

Since college, I've had a series of very interesting Thanksgivings.  Here are a few of note:

The Thanksgiving with the most modes of transportation:  The first Thanksgiving after Jason and I got married, in 2006,  stands out as probably the craziest I've ever had.  My mom's whole family (including 6 brothers and all of their family) decided to rent a house on Orca's Island - a small island off of the coast of Washington state.  Jason and I were living in New York at the time.  I had some extra time off of work, so I decided to fly to Portland for a few days to see my dad and step-mom before catching a plane to Seattle on Wednesday evening.  Jason flew in from New York and met me at the airport, where we rented a car and drove about an hour to the ferry.  We missed the first (and faster) ferry so we had to wait about 2 hours for the next one.  That ferry took about three hours to get to the island.  Once there, we had to drive an additional 30 minutes to the house, on dark winding roads.  Two days later, we turned around and did the whole thing in reverse, complete with a red-eye flight back to New York.  While on the flight, I contracted the stomach flu, and spent the whole flight trying to not to throw up.  I spent the next week off of work, lying in bed.  We decided that we would never, ever, travel for Thanksgiving again.

The Thanksgiving with the longest car ride:  Despite our vow to remain at home for this great holiday, Jason got really depressed about not being able to be with family for Thanksgiving in 2008.  We were still in New York, so the closest family we had were Jason's mom and step-dad in Kansas City, Kansas.  On a whim, we decided to drive there for the week.  It's a 20 hour drive.  We left after work on Friday night and drove through a snow storm to some small town in Ohio.  The next day we drove the remaining 12 hours to Jason's mom's.  And we brought our dog.  Oh yeah, and I was 9 weeks pregnant.  In fact, while we were there, Jason and I had a scare with the pregnancy and feared that I was miscarrying.  So we actually ended up going to the emergency room on Thanksgiving day to make sure everything was all right.  It was.  At the end of the week, we turned around and did the whole drive in reverse.  Everything went fine until we hit Pennsylvania and realized that our car was shaking violently every time we went over 55 mph.  We stopped at a Walmart tire center and discovered that our tires were completely bald and not safe to drive on.  As luck would have it, Walmart did not have the correct tire size.  Our only option was to sign a waver and put the wrong sized tires on our car so that we could complete our journey home.  Quite an adventure.

The Thanksgiving where we should have just gotten takeout:  Jason and I decided to host Thanksgiving at our house last year for 12 people.  My dad and step-mom offered to get one of those prepared Thanksgiving dinners from Safeway, but Jason and I just couldn't bear the thought.  Instead, we decided that we would cook the whole meal ourselves - turkey, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, stuffing, green bean casserole, peas, apple pie, pumpkin pie, and cheesecake, plus appetizers. If you will remember, we were not in the ideal kitchen situation

Jason and I have yet to create our own traditions around this, my favorite holiday.  Hopefully, we can have some stability long enough to do so...or get creative enough that stability doesn't matter!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Moving Makes my Head Hurt

Ok, NaBloPoMo is kicking my butt.  Or maybe its moving or this cold.  Who knows.  But, I will not back down!  I will finish this thing!

So, at the moment, we are staying with my brother-in-law and his wife while we slowly move stuff from our storage unit and my brother-in-law's garage into our new place.  The goal is to have our beds over there by Wednesday night, and everything else by Saturday. Jason's crazy work schedule, the limited hours at the storage unit, and that sweet little holiday called Thanksgiving are turning this move into a week-long adventure.

Moving, in general, makes my head hurt.  I hate it.  I hate packing, I hate unpacking.  I actually quite like going to a new place, but I hate leaving the old place.  I hate the mess and finding new places for things that used to have places.  There are some things about this move in particular that are doing my head in.

Utilities.  Specifically, phone, internet and cable.  I've spent probably 4 hours pouring over information on line and talking to various representatives on the phone, trying to sort out the best options for us.  There are almost too many options, because I can't just look at monthly bill - I have to consider how that monthly bill will change in 3 months, 6 months or a  year, depending on the specials.  I have to weigh different channel options and DVR capabilities, plus start up costs.  Ack!

Our storage unit.  Yuck.  First of all, I haven't seen any of this stuff for almost 5 months.  Some of it is stuff that we used for the previous year and a bit, and then some of it has been in storage since we left New York because it didn't fit into our weird kitchen/living setup.  We have a bizarre accumulation of furniture from various well-meaning family members, much of which is very useful.  But we seem to have three tables and no chairs, four tvs, several nightstands and end tables, but no desk, and none of living room furniture matches (the wall couch found a new home with my brother when we left Portland).  There is unmistakably too much crap!  And yet, we still don't quite have we need.  Which means that we will probably have to (get to) make a trip to Ikea, to purchase yet more stuff, and then find a place for or get rid of the stuff we already have.  My head hurts thinking about it.

Moving/unpacking with a 16 month old.  Seriously, how do you parents of more than one small child do it?  Working around meals and nap times is one thing, but then there's the in-the-way factor when moving heavy boxes and furniture, and the fact that Cy suddenly requires that he be held indefinitely at the most inopportune times.

OK, back to the madness.  Here's hoping I can muster the motivation for another post tomorrow!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

How to Heal What Ails You

So.  Day 20 of NaBloPoMo was a fail. But I'm back again.  Cyrus and I have arrived in Phoenix, and I have contracted a nasty chest cold.  Our impending flight and this cold are my reasons (excuses) for not blogging yesterday. I almost didn't make it today either, but then I thought I would share with all (2) of you our family's secret for curing, or at least speeding up the course of, all colds/flu:

Ginger Tea

How to make:

  • Chop up a bunch of ginger, probably at least an inch to an inch and a half chunk, depending on how much tea you want, and how strong you want it. 
  • Add desired amount of water.
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 20-30 minutes, or until the tea burns just a little going down.  (This is not a joke.  If it doesn't burn, it's not strong enough).
  • Strain the ginger and serve with honey and/or lemon to make it palatable.  (Again, not a joke.  This stuff is kind of disgusting).
  • Reserve ginger to use again.  We reuse the ginger for at least three or four pots of tea, and sometimes stretch it a bit further by adding a small amount of new ginger to the pot.  

My mom first discovered this when I was in high school, and it took me about five years before I could drink more than a few sips.  However, three or four large mugs of this stuff a day will speed up the course of your illness, and if started soon enough, can even decrease the severity.  I have no scientific evidence for this (although I'm sure there is some), but at the very least, it makes us all feel a little better.

Friday, November 19, 2010

I Didn't Know It Started So Early...

This is Cyrus, reading the paper with his Papa. I'm not sure if you can tell, but he is "reading" the sports page.  It's the only section of the paper in which he shows any interest.  Not only that, but he actually requests it!  If he sees the paper on the table, he approaches the nearest adult, asks "up", and then insists "ball, ball, ball" until that adult finds the sports page and flips through it.

He seems to have a major obsession with all things sports.  He sits and watches football or basketball for 15-20 minutes at a time, and gets cranky when the commercials interrupt the game.  Sometimes, he actually grabs the remote, points it at the TV, and then says "ball, ball, ball".

Is this normal?  How does he already have such a strong, and specific, love for sports?  Is this some weird innate boy thing?  My streak of feminism has a hard time believing this, so perhaps it's just specific to Cyrus?  Have any of your kids shown an early affinity for a particular subject or activity?  Did it last as they got older?  I have a feeling that  I'm in for weekends filled with sports, either on the field or on TV for the next two decades or so.

Flashback Friday disclaimer:  All of my flashback worthy photos are in Phoenix.  I had a great idea for a flashback, but didn't want to post it without pictures, and Jason was too tired to send them to me.  Admittedly, I am also too tired to write a lengthy, well thought out post, so maybe tomorrow will be Flashback Saturday...or something.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Things I'd Like To Do

So tonight, I'm going to the midnight showing of the new Harry Potter movie.  This might not be the brightest choice, considering that Cy tends to wake up sometime between the hours of 4:30am and 6:30am, and considering that I have gotten only 4-5 hours of the sleep the past few nights; however, this is actually something that I've always wanted to do, but just haven't had the opportunity.  Plus, I found out that my 78 year old grandmother is going to a midnight showing, so really, I had no excuse!

Anyway, this got me thinking about other things that I've always wanted to do, but for whatever reason, just haven't had the chance. Some of these things seem rather mundane, but they still fit the bill:

  • Go camping in the backwoods.  Now, I've been camping, and I've even been backpacking, but always in either official campgrounds, or on the Appalachian Trail.  Neither really give you the feelings of survival and isolation that are so intriguing about the backwoods.  My dad and I keep talking about this, and in fact, we have tentative plans to take on the backwoods of the Sierras next summer, provided I'm not pregnant!
  • Go to a tailgating party and then a college football game.  This one really is just a matter of not having had the opportunity.  Sure, a football game alone would be fun, but I love the atmosphere of camaraderie and school spirit that accompanies the whole pre-game part.
  • Ski.  Ok, so technically, I've been skiing, but I was 7 years old, and it was about an hour at a ski school, and it was awful.  I'd like to try it for real some time.  Snowboarding would suffice too.
  • Grow a garden and keep chickens.  This one seems a little silly, but the older I get, the more I have a desire to be more in control of the food my family and I eat.  I'm never going to be the flower garden type, but a vegetable garden and a few chickens would make me happy.
  • Go Rock Climbing.  I'm a little surprised at my desire for this activity, considering that I hate heights and/or the possibility of falling.  But it seems strangely exhilarating, and very gratifying.
  • Ride a train with both a sleeping car and a dining car.  This is something that actually really, really want to do.  Trains are my favorite way to travel, and I would love to take one either all or part of the way across the country, seeing historic sites, eating in a fancy dining car with table cloths and silver, and sleeping in a sleeping car.  Do they even have these any more?  Perhaps I should look that up before I get too excited about the prospect...Anyway, I've always thought this would make a great family vacation, although probably one of those where I'm super excited about it and my kids roll their eyes and complain the whole time!
So, what are some things you've never done but would like to, no matter how simple or silly?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Bowled Over

I had another Mom's Night Out with my Strollerstrides group tonight.  We went bowling at one of those new-fangled bowling-alley-turned-hip-lounge places.  The brick and wood decor, leather couches, and upscale bar food sure beat the smoke infused plastic chairs and hot dogs!  Anyway, bowling is one of the few activities that I enjoy immensely despite the fact that I am absolutely terrible at it. I have been beat by children under the age of ten on more than one occasion.  I think my all-time lowest score is something like 47.  My rather ambitious goal tonight was to break 100.  I managed to get 85 on the first game, but check out my score on the second game (my score is the one circled in red):

Two strikes and a spare, plus a score of over 100?  I'll take it!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Ode to the Mini Van

Our mini van is packed and ready to go, and Jason will head out at the ugly hour of 5:00am tomorrow morning.  Say what you will about mini vans and soccer moms, but this baby is a beast when it comes to moves.  This is now the third cross-state move for this van, and it has proved invaluable in each.  When we moved from New York to Portland, Jason drove the first half of the trip with the mini van packed to the gills, and towing a trailer with all of our stuff.  We then picked up more stuff from his mom in Kansas, thus ditching the trailer for a large moving truck.  The mini van continued on to Portland, still chalk full.  And, oh yeah, transporting a dog and a cat...

From Portland to Denver, we packed the van full of everything Cy and would need for three (or so we thought) months in Denver, plus the dog, plus whatever wouldn't fit in the moving truck.  Plus Cy and me.

And now, it is performing that duty once again as we complete our move to Phoenix...or begin it, however you look at it.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Here it comes!

The moving craziness has begun!  By some miracle, we found a house to rent (pictures to come).  And by me, I really mean Jason.  And actually, I don't even mean Jason.  His brother Brian found the house, and then, because Jason had to work, Brian met my Aunt Melissa (a real estate agent) at the house and took copious pictures.  Based on the pictures, we decided to rent it.  Jason decided at the last minute that perhaps at least one of us should actually see the place before we sign a lease, so he swung by today on his way to the leasing office.  It took a series of scans and faxes for both of us to sign all the paperwork, and we still technically have to be approved by the landlord.  But, for all intents and purposes, we have a place to live!

So, here's the plan, as far as we've developed it. I pick Jason up from the airport in about an hour.  Tomorrow we will pack up our minivan and Jason will drive it and the dog down to Phoenix on Wednesday.  I have a surprising amount of crap here in Denver that has to be transported - I'm pretty sure it will more than fill the van! Cyrus and I will finish out the week here in Denver and fly down on Sunday.  (Yes, I got the relatively cushy end of the deal.  It is already a 14 hour drive, and we figured that with Cy, it would probably turn into two days, and Jason didn't want me driving alone, blah blah blah.)

We can start moving into our new place on Monday.  Most of our stuff is in a storage unit in the Phoenix area, and some items are in my brother-in-law's garage.  The problem is that Jason doesn't have a day off until Thanksgiving, so we are trying to figure out just how much we can move using our minivan in the evenings...we shall see.

NaBloPoMo caught me off guard today, hence the lame post. I will try to be slightly more prepared in the future, although, I've just realized that from now until the end of November, my life is going to be in chaos! But I refuse to give in!  I will conquer NaBloPoMo!  Wish us luck!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Baby Free

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, my mom, my grandmother and I spent Saturday night at a fancy resort about an hour from Denver.  I've left Cyrus for large chunks of a day several times, and have even left before bedtime on a few occasions, but this was the first night that I have spent away from him...ever.  Now, I don't know if this later than usual, or earlier than usual, or right about the time that most moms leave their children overnight for the first time, but for me, it felt like just about the right time.    

Here are the things I enjoyed while being baby-free:
  • Shopping for as long as I wanted without having to worry about a fussy baby who wants to be held right when I'm half naked and trying on clothes.
  • Enjoying my meals at my own pace, with no real distractions.  I didn't have to cut anyone's food, or make sure there were no items chucked at servers' heads.  I didn't have to get up halfway through my meal to take a fussy toddler outside, or try to eat while hold said toddler on my lap and trying to keep him from grabbing my fork, water glass, plate, knife, or any other object within reach.
  • Adult conversation.  Of course, I get this when Cy is napping or after he goes to bed, but it was nice to enjoy it during the above activities, since that is almost impossible when he is around.

And, finally, the best part about being Baby Free for a night?  Sleeping in!  I realized that this was going to be possible on Friday afternoon, and I'm not exaggerating when I say that tears came to my eyes. I love my sleep, and probably the hardest part about being a mom is the total and complete lack of control I have over when and how I wake up.  Since I continue to breastfeed, this was the very first night that I did not have to get up with Cyrus whenever he deemed it necessary.  Sure, there were times when Jason got up with him, but I usually had to nurse him first, or, at the very least, heard him cry and was awoken by the process.  And, in the past four months, I've pretty much gotten up with Cyrus every single morning, and every time that he woke up in the middle of the night, with only a handful of exceptions.  

Of course, as luck would have it, I actually slept quite terribly.  And I woke up at 7:30.  However, I got to lounge in bed for a while, sipping a cup of mint tea, and not wrestling with a toddler.  It was bliss.

All of that being said, I was extremely anxious to see my baby this afternoon.  He was napping when we got home, and I had to momentarily resist the urge to go wake him up.  I say momentarily because I very quickly came to my senses and remembered that you NEVER wake a sleeping baby!  Once he woke up, however, I rushed to his room and cuddled him for as long as he would let me.  One night was definitely long enough for this first trip, but I don't think a few nights is out of the question in the future. Plus, the allure of sleeping in may just be too good to pass up!

This is what it looks like to not be violently ripped from sleep some time between the hours of 4:30am and 6:00am.  Relaxing in bed with some tea.  Lovely!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Three Generations!

In honor of my last full weekend in Denver, my mom decided to treat me to a night at the Broadmoor, a 5 star resort in Colorado Springs. My grandmother flew out from California for a few days, so we decided to make it a girls night - no baby, no grandpa, just three generations of great women! We've already had a lovely day of shopping and dining, and I am looking forward a long night of (hopefully) uninterrupted sleep!  I'm lucky to have a grandma and a mom who are so much fun to be with!

My mom, my grandmother, and me, all dressed up, and enjoying a lovely dinner out!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Flashback Friday: The Journeys of Bear

This is Bear.  He looks a little worn and ragged, but that is for good reason.  He has provided countless hours of comfort and companionship to not one small child but two, and he may well be on his way to accompanying a third.  My mom got Bear when she was 11 years on a trip to Disneyland and he was her companion for the next five or so years.  When I was born, she had him re-stuffed, and he quickly became my most treasured object.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Creepy Trend

As Jason and I try to find a place to live in a city with which we are not too familiar, we have to rely on certain tools to figure out if a neighborhood is worthy to house the Wells family.  One of those tools is  crime mapper that show the different types of crimes that have occurred in that area in the past few months; the other one is a sex offender search.

Tonight, I entered the address of a place we are considering into the Arizona sex offender database.  It pops up a three-square mile map that shows where sex offenders live, as well as locations of schools and daycare centers.  Fortunately, there were no sex offenders in the exact neighborhood of the potential house.  However, I did notice an extremely disturbing trend: It appeared that there were little clusters of sex offenders living near most of the schools and daycare centers!  I was chatting with my cousin at the time, and she had me search her address, too - which is in a decidedly nicer neighborhood - and we found the same thing!  Not only is that extremely creepy, but isn't that against the rules?  If not, it should be.  In some cases, the sex offender appeared to live literally next door or within a few houses of the school or daycare.  That just sketches me out.

So, I would suggest that if you haven't already, you might want to check out your state's sex offender database.  It probably won't convince you to move, and it probably won't convince me not move somewhere (unless of course I discover that one is living right next door...that might be a little too much to handle) but at least by knowing you can be a little more aware of your surroundings - especially if you find the creepy sex offender clusters near your child's school or daycare!  I'd be curious to know if this trend occurs in other cities...Let me know what you find out.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Dinner: Impossible

One of the reasons that I am so very excited to move down to Phoenix (besides the obvious one of being with my husband) is that we finally get to have our own place again!  We've both been living with family members for the past four plus months, but even before that we didn't totally have our own place.  We lived in the basement of my dad and step-mom's house in Portland for almost a year and a half.  They had moved to California and rented out bedrooms on the top floor.  We had the responsibility of managing the renters and finding people to move in when someone moved out.  We actually had quite a bit of space downstairs, including a living room, a large bedroom for us, a decent sized bedroom for Cy and a bathroom.   Although the separation between the main floor and the basement really wasn't enough to have total privacy, we eventually got used to keeping our voices down in certain areas.

Because we excepted three people to share the upstairs kitchen, we thought it might be an easier sell if we weren't also using it.  So, we set ourselves up in the downstairs kitchen.  Take a look.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Who needs Toys R Us?

Cyrus has discovered an assortment of favorite "toys" from around the house.  It doesn't matter that he has a whole basket of toys - these items are way more fun!

 My mom has all these plastic bins for storing ribbon and other sundry craft items.  Cy's favorite activity is to open the containers, take out all the ribbon, unravel it and spread it all over the floor.  When he can't do that, he is content to simply take the containers off the shelves, stack them, carry them around, and then put them back, only to repeat again.  

What is more fun than taking things out of a draw and strewing them about the floor?  Apparently, nothing.  The snack sized ziplocs seem to be his favorite.  I rarely actually allow him to take the boxes out of the drawer and then the baggies out of the boxes.  Cy knows this, so often he runs over and opens the drawer, pulls out one or two baggies, then makes a run for it, giggling all the way.

No, I don't let my child play with oven.  That would be dangerous.  When no one is looking, he pulls this knob off of the oven and runs away with it, hiding it in some obscure location.  I guess it's like hide and seek...

Ok, this one I kind of get, and I guess it is a toy of sorts.  It might be the ugliest thing I've ever seen, and it sings this goofy song about the "Cupid Shuffle"  while shuffling all over the place. (I probably just exposed my total and complete lack of coolness, as I think this might be a real song).  Cy figured out how to push the button to make him sing, so we get to hear this about 50 times a day.  Sometimes Cy lets him dance, but sometimes he gets so excited that he picks him up and carries him around while he sings.  

What odd things do your kids find entertaining?  

Monday, November 8, 2010

Counting down the days...

Ugh.  Cyrus and I leave for Phoenix in 13 days, and suddenly, things that I've been tolerating for the past four months have become completely intolerable.  For some reason, the last two weeks of any experience are always the hardest for me.   In elementary school, the last two weeks before vacation made me restless and antsy.  Anytime I've been away from home for an extended period of time, I hardly miss my family until I'm about ready to go home, and then it becomes almost unbearable.

Now that the end is in sight, being without my husband and being the sole parent for Cyrus is driving me a little nuts.  Not to mention that fact that we've been living in someone else's house, albeit my parent's house, for the past four months.  I lost my patience and yelled at Cyrus three times today.  And it wasn't that he was being unusually naughty - I just couldn't keep my cool.  He has recently started throwing a massive fit every time I change his diaper.  Usually, I try to find something to distract him, or I sing him a song, but today, I suddenly felt overwhelmed and frustrated at being the only parent, and instead of trying to help him out, I yelled.  Loudly.  And I might have cursed.  Now, don't get me wrong, my parents have been incredibly helpful, but it's just not the same thing as having Jason around to jump in when I just can't do it any more.  It probably doesn't help that Cyrus woke up at 4:30am today for the second day in a row (stupid daylight savings time).

I've been trying to remind myself all day long that I just need to make it a little while longer and then our little family can be together again, in our own house. Now, if Cyrus could maybe sleep in past 5am tomorrow, I might just make it!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

How My TV Obsessions Reflect my Phase in Life

There was a time in my life when I was totally addicted to the TLC show "A Baby Story".  I think it started about a year or so after Jason and I got married, which is probably when I started thinking about having a baby.  I loved hearing the couples' stories and seeing the labor and birth process.  I especially liked the 6 weeks later update.  This obsession continued all the way through my pregnancy with Cyrus.  Sometimes, I panicked about how my birth would go, especially after watching an episode that ended with unplanned C-section or some other complication.  Since I was aiming for a natural birth, these episodes really upset me, especially as I got closer and closer to my due date.  On several occasions, after a panic session, Jason "banned" me from watching it!  I watched it anyway, but tried to limit my panicking, at least for a while.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

I'll be accepting my award next week...

...for mother of the year.

This beauty happened this afternoon while I was apartment hunting (online).  He ran for the dog bed (one of his favorite places to hang out), slipped, and ran into the heat register.

This happened about three weeks ago while I was working in the garage.  He was playing on the cement step outside of the garage.  I heard him whimper, but he never cried.  Then 20 minutes later, my mom exclaimed "What happened to his head?!?"  This is what it looked like three days later.

My mom keeps chalking it up to "boys will be boys"...but perhaps it's just "kids will be kids"?

Friday, November 5, 2010

Flashback Friday: Apartment Hunting in the Bronx

I have basically spent all afternoon trying to find apartments in Phoenix, which has had me thinking about the last time we looked for apartments.  It was the fall of 2005, and Jason had just moved to New York.  I was living with a friend at the time, and things between us got kind of tense, so Jason and I needed to find a new place to live pretty quickly.

Our budget was $1,000 a month, which, almost anywhere else in the country, seems lush for a 1 bedroom apartment.  However, it was actually quite meager in NYC.  We considered Queens and Brooklyn, two far more hip and happening boroughs, but ultimately decided to limit our search to upper Manhattan and the Bronx.  I felt comfortable with these areas, as I had been living in the Bronx for the past 18 months and commuting through upper Manhattan.  Plus, we figured that we could get more for our money in both space and proximity to the train in these areas.  

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Soaking up the Fall

My blog background isn't just a nod to the current season, it is an homage to my favorite season!  For as long as I can remember, fall as been my most anticipated time of year.  I have been lucky to spend most of my life in places that have beautiful falls.  New York's summers and winters leave a lot to be desired, but fall there is amazing - all the leaves change colors, there is a crispness to the air before the bitter winds of winter set in and there seems to be a general air of festivity.  I happen to love all of Portland's seasons, but fall is especially amazing.  Then there were my four years in Los Angeles...not so much fall happening there. Since I am soon moving to the land of no seasons, I am pleased to be spending this fall in Denver, where I can soak up most of my favorite things about the season.  Hopefully it will hold me for a few years before I can make my way to another beautiful autumn.   Here is why I love fall (and I realize that these things are kind of cliche, but they truly are my favorites, so who cares?)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Timing is Everything

As you may know from previous posts, Jason and I are not currently living in the same city, nor even the same state.  Our lives are in major transition and we really thought that we would be living together again by now.  However, as of the weekend, Jason was no closer to having a store and I had resigned myself to the goal of being together by Christmas.  I figured that, this way, if we got to be together sooner, I'd be overjoyed, and if it actually took until Christmas, I wouldn't be terribly disappointed.  To this end, on Monday night I bought a ticket to go see Jason for 10 days at Thanksgiving.  On Tuesday morning, I paid for a month of Stroller Strides classes.  Wouldn't you know it, Jason called me Tuesday afternoon with the long anticipated news that he had finally been given a store!  I guess Murphy's law is in full effect in the Wells family.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Not a Teacher or a Doctor, but a...?

Remember when we were kids and someone asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up?  I seem to remember that I thought there were only a few handfuls of possible professions available to me: the standards (Teacher, Police Officer, Doctor, Lawyer, etc) and then whatever professions my parents had.  In my case, construction worker, produce deliverer and chef (the latter two were my mom - and yes, at some point around the age of 4 or 5, I wanted to own my own produce company and drive a big blue pickup truck and deliver produce...)  I think that this relatively narrow view of potential professions or careers continued on up through at least middle school, widening to include things like veterinarian or orchestra conductor (don't ask).

Monday, November 1, 2010

NaBloPoMo is Here!

It is that time of year again, and I won't lie, I've been looking forward to this for quite some time.  Last year, I revived my blog with NaBloPoMo in October.  It was the first time since I started it that I posted regularly. I loved feeling like I was finally contributing to the blogging world, instead of just reading everyone else's blogs. While I maintained the posting momentum for a few months, things petered out and then died altogether by the end of April.  I went a full five months before I picked it back up, and I have to admit that part of the reason I started posting in October was to gain momentum for NaBloPoMo in November.

While I enjoyed writing alongside my friend Kristen in October last year, come November, I realized that  many of the blogs I followed were taking the challenge during that month.  I felt a little left out and determined that this year, should my blog need reviving, I would take the challenge in November, right alongside Bridget and a few others.

So here I am.  Ready for 30 posts in 30 days! I've got all kinds of good stuff I've been saving just for this occasion.  Now, I realize that it is late on this, the first day of November, and that the few of you who read this blog will likely not read this until at least the 2nd of November, but I urge you to join me anyway!  Who cares if you're a day late?  Write an extra post one day if it makes you feel better!  All right now, who's with me?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...