Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Roman Polanski... am I missing something?

Maybe I'm missing something? If my daughter was 13 and had sex with ANYONE, (and drugged) I would fight to the end of the earth to have the guy arrested ... if he fled after only serving 42 days in prison on the eve of his sentencing and disappeared for 31 years as a fugitive, I would NOT be playing the sympathy card. What Roman Polanski did was unfathomable. Time does not forgive this crime... having the woman who I sense is feeling pressure to have his crime "erased" does not make it right.  I'm an open minded liberal citizen... but 13 year olds need to be protected and who knows what long term effect this has had on her! Polanski is brilliant, talented and directed some of our classic movies... but I also consider him a coward and a rapist. Let him sit in a Swiss Jail, even at 76 - justice needs to be served. From what I'm reading, many people do not agree with me... even Whoppi Goldberg who I ususally agree with on most issues, feels it was not "rape"... Am I missing something?

Found my Apples!

Yes... I found my favorite fall apples... Abma's Farm in Wyckoff! If you live in the area, they have a terrific apple selection and they're only $1.69/lb! They are HUGE too. Everyone in the family seems happy and I've had a few people tell me they've found them at other locations...so I had to share! Kathy said that Winesaps are coming out in a few weeks, I don't think I've ever had them, so can't wait to try them too. Thank you Abmas Farm...so happy you are local!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Planning for a Garage Sale... the battle is beginning!

Getting ready for a garage sale with my husband is going to be a battle... he does NOT want to part with anything... (althought he says he does) He's used this line a few too many times "How can you get rid of that, we've had it since we're married"? EXACTLY... and we've not touched it in over 20 years either. We're talking engagement gifts that have moved with us... and this time permanently into our basement. Phil has MORE fishing equipment than a fishing store, I'm NOT exaggerating... at first he was so anxious to clean it out and sell. Last night he told me he did not want to part with any of it! I thought advertising "fishing gear" would be a great lure (no pun intended)... there goes that idea! The deal was... I'm happy to take off a couple of days at work to get ready, but I'm NOT doing this alone and need help schlepping stuff from the basement and attic... he seems to still be on board with this... When I mentioned I'm tired of a print we've had hanging in our living room, that's since faded, he was heart broken "please don't sell that... we bought it when we were engaged"... I'm in for it... I can see the battles leading up to this event already... Over the years things just "disappeared"... it's the only way to purge stuff in our house... now that I want to sell it and it will be out on a table ... I feel I'll be "caught"... I want to turn a leaf and live like a "minimalist" with nothing around we do not need, have not touched and except for huge sentimental value... just get rid of it... who's going to win this battle???

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Should Reilly win this battle?

"Ut Oh... Caught"
OK...the dog's winning. We removed "Reilly's Chair"... she (used) to only jumped up onto 1 piece of furniture... it was time for this chair to go to the curb! The replaced chair has a bit of a rock... she won't go near it... I've come down for 3 mornings and she's decided the love seat is her new place to habitat... we are "not" agreeing on this. I've arranged the pillows, she moves them. I've put down a throw, she has removed it. At what point do I "give in"... the problem is ~ I feel badly - we took away "her" chair of many years... but I have to remind myself that SHE IS A DOG!
Do you allow your dog to jump up onto furniture???

"Tell me about the fennel"...

Last evening I spent a lovely dinner with my sisters and 2 of my nieces...ladies night. Phil is a way on a fishing trip this week. One of my nieces does not eat meat, so with fish I always try and make a new vegetable... One of our favorites is roasted fennel. So easy...So delicious! Betsy... who LOVES her culinary world made a comment on facebook, "tell me about the fennel"... so I decided to elaborate! Normally fennel tastes like a cross between celery, cabbage, and licorice. Roasting, however, brings out an entirely new flavor... This is how simply I prepare it:
2 large bulbs of fennel, cut into quarters, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper, top with a good grated parmesan cheese. Roast in oven at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Being such a dense vegetable, it takes a while to soften... serve warm or room temp - garnish with the fronds. That easy! Thanks Betsy for asking... This time of year I enjoy roasting vegetables, most of them... it reminds me of how our parents and grandparents cooked the life out of them in a pot of water!!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

College Recruiting...It's that time of the year AGAIN!

It's Recruiting Time... come fall I start to attend many college fairs... and I do private tutoring! People are in that "next phase of life" come September...the lazy days of summer are history! If you or anyone you know needs some "college coaching" and tips on student interviewing skills for college admissions, internships or entry level jobs... it's that time of year, please contact me! If you are visiting colleges and want some tips on "getting the most out of your visit"... please just ask!

When I'm at college fair,and activly recruiting  I don't realize how much talking I'm doing until I'm on my way home and my face actually hurts, to do it right, it's exhausting ... but I love it and love working with students, at all stages... AND it's never too late to go back to school either!

Monday, September 21, 2009

What's your color...what's your cause?

Today at school one of our Associate Deans had on a teal colored ribbon pin... hmmm, teal? We all know that Red is for Aids Awareness, it was the initial of the many colored ribbons that was developed in 1991, since then there are so many, some very recognizable, especially the pink for breast cancer awareness, and, they are still being created... I love causes and will always ask someone what their symbol means, from the many colored plastic bracelets with many causes, the initial being yellow - they are frequently referred to as rubber bracelet, sometimes called silicone bracelets, engraved silicone bracelets, cause bracelets, gel bracelets or Livestrong bracelets, that were popularized by the Lance Armstrong Foundation. The Lance Armstrong Foundation had "Livestrong" printed on the bracelets and sold them to raise cancer awareness. Following the popularity of Livestrong bracelets, other organizations have jumped on board, creating their own bracelets to raise money and awareness for different causes. (I've never been a fan of Lance Armstrong, my own personal reasons, but it has nothing to do with a great cause) Each cause is usually represented by a different color. One of my favorite charities is "donate life" a lime green bracelet... Of course I'm a supporter of ovarian cancer awareness, a silent killer to so many women... that's what the teal represents, today I also learned that September is ovarian cancer awareness month...next month, October, is breast cancer awareness month... support your cause and wear your bracelet or pin with pride!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

When you open-up Pandora's Box!

Ut oh..just as 1 room and hall are the way they should be... I feel like I've opened up Pandora's Box... suddenly every ceiling looks like it needs a fresh white coat... and while we're heading up there... some spackle to fix up some blemishes... and while we're doing the ceiling - maybe just the doors... Now that I have no curtains, I'm noticing some green mildew that set in on some awnings... a clorox scrub will do it wonders... And why not take a few screens in for repair... those small tears have been driving me crazy...

I don't know if I've been in denial, or knew starting 1 project would just keep me unfolding layers upon layers of other projects. Let's face it, a house is a time zapper, money pit - you are never really done! My husband seem to be dreading my new opening line "You know what I think we should do..." I've missed a couple of springs for the traditional clean-up and I seem to function better in the Fall... My memories growing up are there always being a project going on...all of this started with 2 tiny burns in our old carpet...another story for another blog!

Friday, September 18, 2009

That "light" at the end of the tunnel!

I FINALLY see it... after a few long weeks... When you do the work yourself...it's painstakingly slow - it's starting to feel rewarding. Honestly, even if my scheduled allowed me to do this project 24/7 - I think I'd be so bored... I've realized I get bored way more than I admit! After painting and painting... and scraping and taping... today the new carpet was installed. We had 4 of the nicest men here for 6 hours, only one spoke English and he was so thoughtful and accommodating... and I was SO HAPPY they took away the old carpet - the last time we did this it had to go on the curb! I guess the best compliment was our son came home for all of 10 minutes and was all compliments..."he noticed"! My September resolution is LESS clutter...for me it's very hard... so as I'm putting away my "STUFF" I'm consciously putting away much less of it and planning for my first garage sale... a topic for another blog!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Sciatic Relief... AVOID SURGERY!!!

Spinal Decompression Table
I consistently hear people complain of back pain... young people too!  I can relate...I suffered for over a year...and everyone who knew me 3 years ago must remember my constant pain...pure agony. After 3 epidural treatments from an orthopedist, with no relief, I went to a neurosurgeon who agreed with the orthopedist that the ONLY treatment was surgery. I was set, not happy, but the sciatica was so constant, and lower back pain so acute I had to do something! My Mother was practically begging me to go to a chiropractor and one that had a decompression table. Mom had been on a table for spinal stenosis and felt the relief, through that she did a lot of research and sent me articles and information... I was NOT one to ever trust a chiropractor, and both doctors warned me not to let one "touch me". I finally caved in, and went for a free consultation... with that came a free massage... luckily, they took my insurance but were smart and encouraged me to come back a few times before I committed. If I was the staff in this office, I would have kicked me out of the office, I had NO trust, questioned EVERY move they made and had an attitude of "prove to me" you can help me. I was persistent and went 3 times/week (the treatments on the table were soothing and I LOVED the massage) ... after 2 weeks I started to feel "relief". After 3 months I had absolutely NO pain. Three years later, still no pain. So, if you, or someone you know is suffering from lower back pain from herniated discs, or has sciatica, it's worth investigating... I'd go back in a heart beat at the first sign of pain!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

September...Searching for Honey Crisp Apples!

Ask someone their favorite kind of apple... especially this time of the year and you'll hear them all ~ gala, macoun, pink lady, delicious, granny smith, macintosh, etc. I worked at a farm and people were very partial to the types of apples they bought...I thought they were crazy, to me a few stood out, but it was just not that important to me... until now. A few years ago someone introduced me to a Honey Crisp Apple... I've been hooked, so have my son and husband; when I bring them in the house they are gone in no time. I've been calling around to the local farm markets, no one has them yet... they all say "soon"... I hope so, it's just not September without apples... I found out that honey crisp apples were developed at the University of Minnesota. A honey crisp apple is a cross between macoun apple and honey gold apples and is extraordinarily crisp and juicy with a wonderful aroma and flavor! (Sounds funny to hear an apple "was developed") They are primarily grown in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan and Illinois...please ship them to NJ soon!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Seton Hall Rugby... Fall '09 - GO PIRATES!

Seton Hall Rugby ~ Pirates!

Home game opener was yesterday... for a club sport the dedication and commitment from this team is amazing. The coaches are former SHU Rugby Players... they don't want to leave the sport! I'm continuously impressed by the comradery of these players, I've never seen anything like it before. They work hard, practice hard, play hard - and party hard! Gene loves it, lives with 4 other Rugby Players in "The Rugby House"...no need to join a fraternity!

Opening Game - Beat Sacred Heart! 

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Nothing like a good pot of "brewed" coffee!

I hate a coffee rush.   When I'm working over weekends at school, I tend to drink way too much coffee... sometimes just to break up the day... we now have this "Flavia" Coffee Machine - they have become very popular, single self serving cups of coffee. I'll admit, they are inticing, some great flavors - but the jury is still out in my mind. I love the convenience, but it's NOT brewed coffee. What sort of "bugs" me is that I love hazelnut flavored coffee (not the syrup)... but I really DO NOT like Flavia's Hazelnut... I've noticed these other places as well, I don't think the water is hot enough and it just does not compare to true brewed coffee... curious if anyone else has a single serving coffee machine, the pods seem to be the most popular... I've tried them too... still not sold!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

"Frozen in time Moments"

"Abraham, Martin & John" We can all remember those "frozen in time" events... Assassinations of both Kennedy brothers, Martin Luther King, Jr., John Lennon and of course, September 11, 2001. In 1963, I was 6 years old, in first grade at Our Lady of Perpetual Help School ~ to this day I can identify my classroom and the seat I was sitting in when we were informed President Kennedy was shot! I remember everyone of these "moments"... I was 23 and walking into The Valley Pub with a great friend Brooke when we heard about John Lennon! Eight years ago, on a beautiful blue sky September morning, it was very unusual that both Phil and I were home... I was upstairs and I heard it on the news on TV that the World Trade Center was hit... I went and told Phil and he said "it was probably a small Cessna" ... then the second one hit and we were both glued to the TV, for days... I could not shut it off. I had just left my job in NYC after commuting and working there all my working years! I know I'm not alone, these stories resurface every year, and they should. I can't remember the last time I heard the famous song "Abraham, Martin and John" - but it always "get's me"...  and so will tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A few of my favorite things... LLBean!

LLBean... Standard Favorites... GOR TEX... Field Jackets... Boots...  GREAT Totes...!

Early Fall...Memories of buying back to school clothes. My poor Mom - 3 girls! I've lucked out, our son is not into clothes, he wants comfort and has a conservative style, by nature - I've never interefered about anything he's wanted, it's just not an issue in our house.  His girlfriend has dropped a few "hints", but she is very classic and I'd give her my credit card to shop with him, anyday! I can purchase almost everything I want from catalogs.  (ANYTHING to avoid a mall) It is still my favorite time of year to receive catalogs, and yet, the one I found/find myself looking forward to receiving and ordering from is still LLBean! I can purchase for all 3 of us with one click on the mouse!  I remember my trip to their flagship store in Maine - probably one of the only "highs" I received from shopping. So, as I recently did my "couch shopping" I came up with a few favorites... I've also branched out and equally love Eddie Bauer and Orvis...get the picture? Not very trendy in our house, we stick to the classic basics that never go out of style!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Put away your White Shoes!!!

I can hear both my Mom and Grandmother so vividly - "It's Labor Day.. no more white shoes until Memorial Day"... it always "bugged" me - but you'll NEVER find me wearing white shoes (reality... I only own 1 pair of flat white sandals, I do not own any white shoes) ... but I've carried it over to white pants, bags, skirts and a few other items that "scream" summer! I was curious what etiquette origin this came from... it appears it's a bit of a mystery. Some cited temperature, that white reflects light and heat, wearing white would make you cooler in winter, but let's not get it mixed with "winter white" that's always acceptable. Go figure! But it's one of those imbedded rules in my head, I notice when others wear white (of course I know not to say anything, except if you were my sister, but they know better too)! I guess it's another reason it's officially the end of summer... too bad because besides schools starting up - September is the best beach month... just don't be caught sporting a white bathing suit!
Yah...in my dreams!!!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

How Nervy... A Painting Party!

So being the "big mouth" that I am...and talk about everything I'm doing... I've mentioned to many that we are FINALLY starting our inside painting job. I've had at least 3 people say to me "oh, why don't you have a painting party"... Have you ever been invited to such a thing? We haven't and if we did I'd be sure to NOT EVEN CONSIDER GOING... how nervy can you get? Painting is like moving - you DON'T expect people to help you - if you can't do it yourself, hire someone - that's it!
I once went to a 'trim the tree" Christmas Party... we brought an ornament and it was very festive... that's about the extent of a "come and help" party I ever want!
Has anyone ever been invited to a "painting party"... you can serve all the enticing food and spirits you want... I don't wanna be there... and therefore, I'd NEVER dream of having one myself!
Current State of Affairs...

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Saturday...Featured Favorite Humanitarian # 19

Betty Williams
Betty Williams (born 22 May 1943) was a co-recipient with Mairead Corrigan of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1976 for her work as a cofounder of Community of Peace People, an organisation dedicated to promoting a peaceful resolution to The Troubles in Northern Ireland. She heads the Global Children's Foundation and is President of the World Centre of Compassion for Children International.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Adrenaline Rush... (not the good kind)!

ADRENALINE RUSH: "It is released from the adrenal glands when danger threatens or in an emergency, Such triggers may be threatening, ... "
You can't help them...they come when you least expect them... and then trying to recover when they are over? I just had one... Phil was expected home tonight from a fishing trip - he frequently stays until the bitter end and it's totally dark... then calls me when on the road - he left last night for the Catskills. It's 10:45 PM, and I just went into a panic... I called the local police to make sure there were NO fishing accidents (I had him floating down the river in waders filled w/ water)... "No Ma'am... all quiet here today". Hmmmm, I know his cell phone does NOT work in this area.... I have NO idea why I called the OLNY motel in the area... "Yes, he just checked in" My heart is pounding.... it's NOT him on the other end of the line!!! Called her back... "whoops, sorry about that"... Does he have a beard? Is he a fisherman? Does he drive a Honda? YES, YES, YES - hold on.... Phil picks up... I suddenly "loose it" - why are you there? why have you not called me? He starts laughing - "what is your problem... I told you I took tomorrow off as a vacation day to fish... did you check your messages, I left you one"? "oh, no... and now I sort of remember you telling me something about this... " OK...sorry - well, how was your day fishing anyway........... yadda, yadda, yadda - at that point it was that shaky POST adrenaline rush... relief, anger, and now I'm SO WIDE AWAKE, but ...happy! 


We are starting a painting job. I am dreading this painting job. The last time we painted we had 3 estimates and I was SHOCKED at the cost to hire a professional painter... BUT, I do believe they earn every cent of it... it's tedious, endless and I find absolutely NO JOY in it... except when it's done. So...tonight I'm writing this blog to distract me from starting... yep - there is NO ONE who can procrastinate like me to avoid something I'm dreading... I admit it too. This has been brewing for weeks... I made a statement we had to wait until Gene left for school...we now have a 3 day weekend... why not "labor" over Labor Day Weekend - (not one of my favorite holiday weekends anyway)... I could easily find more excuses...but think it's best to just TAKE THE PLUNGE!!