Saturday, September 30

chicken little

Jake and I watched this movie tonight. It was his second screening of the film--my mom had taken him to see it when it was released. For a kid's movie, it wasn't bad, but it wasn't anywhere as good as Shrek or The Incredibles, or any other films of that ilk. Still, we had a good time watching it and Jake pointed out all of the "good parts" before they happened, so I didn't miss anything. I made a big vat of popcorn and he ate a surprisingly large amount of it, but we still managed to save some for Brian, who just arrived home a few minutes ago.

angela and jacob's day of fun

Brian is at the Penn State game with my dad today. Seeing that he'll be gone most of the day, I figured I better plan some stuff for Jake and I to do. Our day started off with haircuts for the two of us in the morning. We came home and had lunch and did some chores around the house. After that, he helped me put some stuff away in the attic. I have a bad habit of piling things up in the library and there was quite a pile this time. While we were in the attic, we got out the Halloween decorations and then we decorated the house. He's all fired up about Halloween, let me tell you.

By this point, it was time to make supper. Chicken soup was on the menu. I was hoping he'd help me cook, but the TV was more enticing. After the soup was on, I zoned out on the couch while he watched TV. After this, we ran an errand and I put the finishing touches on the soup. Right now, he's outside playing with his neighbor buddy. And we have plans later this evening to watch a movie. The day has been quite pleasant thus far.

Monday, September 25

anchorman: the legend of ron burgundy

I wasn't in the mood to think this evening, so this looked like the perfect movie to watch. About 30 minutes into it, I was ready to change the channel, but Brian was enjoying it too much (he was simultaneously saying how bad the movie was and laughing). Sure, it had some funny parts, but that doesn't make it worth watching. So, I sat here, did some work on the computer, and watched the funny parts. Now, I'm cleansing my brain with some Monday Night Football before I go to bed.

Sunday, September 24

stupor bowl

Brian and Jake went to the Steeler game today so I've been keeping myself busy doing all those things I never get to do (at my own pace, anyway). I got up early this morning because when Brian and Jake are up, everyone is up. I started off my day by baking two loaves of ciabatta (we're going to be having some good sandwiches in the coming month). I always want to make ciabatta, but by the time I think about it, it's always too late to start the sponge (which takes 2-24 hours). Luckily, I had the forethought to do this yesterday.

After doing my usual morning routine, it was time for lunch. I made a white bean and chicken salad that I really like, but the guys would never eat it, so today seemed like a good day for that recipe. After lunch, more housework. Next, it was time for the game. I watched it for a bit and it started off pretty good, but things went downhill fast, so I thought that would be a good time to grab a little nap. I slept for about 45 minutes and when I woke up, the Steelers weren't any better off. I watched the game for a few more minutes, then had to run to Nanty Glo to let Brian's parent's dog out (they're at the game, too). By the time I got home, there were only a few seconds left in the game and, of course, the Steelers had another turnover and lost the game.

This was one of the most bumbling games I've ever had the displeasure of watching. If I counted the stats correctly, there were 8 turnovers (5 interceptions and 3 fumbles) plus a couple more fumbles that were not turnovers. Messy. This was between the two teams, of course. Anyway, I have not lost hope yet. It looks to me like the Steelers offense hasn't clicked yet and a lot of that has to do with Roethlisburger right now (he was definitely looking like a post-Bradshaw Steeler QB today). I still think they can turn the season around, but I'm not expecting another Super Bowl win this year.

Thursday, September 21

toothless jake

Jake finally lost his first tooth. I say "finally" because every six months for the past year, he's asked the dentist when he was going to lose a tooth. Each time the answer was, "probably within the next six months."

His tooth was loose for nearly two weeks before the darned thing came out. If that were me, I would've had the bugger out on the second day. The tooth was literally hanging by a thread the night before it finally came out, but he wouldn't pull it or let us pull it that night. The next day, he was pushing it back and forth and it finally came out.

The good news is that since he waited so long, his new tooth is already poking through.

Teeth are going a buck a piece these days. I wouldn't want to be the tooth fairy. Damned inflation!

Monday, September 18

indian summer?

You all can thank me for the nice weather we've had the past few days. I had Brian put the cover on the air conditioner this weekend, so some nice weather was practically guaranteed. I did manage to take advantage of the weather by working in the garden a few times over the weekend--I'm on fall cleanup duty now. I really wanted to get out there tonight, but we had a cub scout meeting to attend at 7pm, so I didn't have time. I have a lot of work to do before October (and brush cleanup week) hits, so hopefully we will have some decent weather in the interim.

We managed to get through the summer without a lot of activities, but they have all culminated into one busy September and October. I'm not sure how that happened.

Thursday, September 14

scout's honor

I don't think I mentioned this before, but Jake quit karate a few months ago. It was time to move up to the next class and he just wasn't interested. It seemed like a waste of time and money to force him to continue.

While I'm not one to push extracurricular activities, I do think it is important for him to be involved in something. If only so he gets to interact with other kids on a regular basis. Being an only child, things can get pretty boring around here for him at times. This issue has been mitigated somewhat this summer because a new family moved into the neighborhood and they have three kids around Jake's age, so he's been playing with them a lot. But, still, I think it's good to have a more structured activity to go to.

Continuing our "character-building" theme for activities, we thought cub scouts would be a good thing for Jake to try next. Brian was involved in boy scouts and really enjoyed it, so he's looking forward to some of the activities as well. Sign up was this past week, so Jake's ready to go just as soon as we buy his handbook and uniform. He wasn't all that interested in joining, but he had a great time at the sign up meeting because a bunch of his friends from school were there. I think this should work out pretty well for him.

Wednesday, September 13


Brian and I watched this last night, sans Margarita (though we did have a lemonade with vodka. mmm. nothing to eat, though). We both really liked the movie. It had more twists and turns than route 56 into Bedford. I can't really get into the plot because I don't want to ruin it for anyone, but suffice it to say, it's not your average affair flick. It was quite entertaining, though I wouldn't call it great cinema. But, sometimes being entertained is enough. And, that was certainly the case last night.

I heard mixed reviews about Jennifer Aniston's performance in the movie, but I thought she did a pretty good job--particularly once the story line unraveled.

Definitely recommended.

Saturday, September 9

dog run 2006

We were debating all week whether to attend this year's Dog Run party. We went last year and had a great time, but they raised the rates this year and we didn't feel that it was worth the $60 seeing that I don't drink beer and that is the only alcoholic beverage served. Brian finally made up his mind that we were going to just do the run, but not go to the party. As it turns out, no one could have watched Jake for us this evening, so it was a moot point. And, given the fact that it's been raining since 6:30, I'm rather glad we didn't have plans to go.

But, we "unofficially" did the run along with one of my friends from work, Jeff. Brian tried to get some of his biker friends to go, but no one was available this weekend. I'm glad Jeff went with us because it's definitely more fun to ride with someone than by yourself--at least for something like this.

I think Brian was bummed about not going to the party because this evening, he expressed an interest in going to next year's party and camping there overnight. Unfortunately, he did not read the fine print of our prenup agreement--"Except as otherwise provided below, Prospective Husband and Prospective Wife waive the following right: camping."

Wednesday, September 6

meaty ochre

As you may have read, we installed a new radio and cd changer in my car a few weeks ago. I've been enjoying the changer, but I was not happy with the sound coming from the speakers. Not one bit. We tried tweaking the EQ and every other setting on the radio, to no avail. The sound was mediocre at best, crappy at worst. So, the only thing left was to buy new speakers. We installed these on Labor Day, and oh, what a difference a few speakers can make. It all sounds quite wonderful now. The only thing I don't understand is how is it that this is the most expensive vehicle I've owned, yet it had the crappiest speakers of all my vehicles. I've replaced a few radios in our vehicles over the years, but I've never had to replace the speakers. I'm sure we could've gotten a better sound if I would have, but the point is, none of them sounded bad until this one. I just don't get it.

Monday, September 4

sauced up

Last year, I was looking for a way to process my garden tomatoes for sauce. I didn't have any luck last season, but I found this cool attachment for my KitchenAid mixer in the fall, so I grabbed it up and have been patiently waiting to use it ever since. Before Hurricane Ernsto blew through over the weekend, I picked all of the ripe tomatoes from my garden. I didn't have quite as much as I normally use for sauce, but I thought it would do for a test. So, I attached the fruit and vegetable strainer to my mixer and started to process the tomatoes. It worked like a charm. The good stuff came out of one end of the strainer and the seeds and skins out of the other. My sauce turned out a little thinner than I like, but that happens to me every time I make sauce from fresh tomatoes. Next year (or if I get really lucky with my crop, next month), I'll have to try cooking it longer to thicken it up. But, I do think this is the permanent solution for my tomato problem.

Saturday, September 2

the aristocrats

We watched this movie last night while munching on black bean dip and sipping Margaritas. This was a documentary about a joke whose punchline is "The Aristocrats". This joke has been used as an exercise by comics since the beginning of comedy. It's premise is to tell this obscene story and be funny about it. As a joke, it's not really all that funny. They talked to countless comedians who told their version of the joke. Most were just disgusting, though there were a couple of really funny ones in there. The joke was probably told close to 100 times during the course of the documentary (it seemed like it, anyway), so it was surprising that it kept our interest for the full 90 minutes of the film.

I haven't watched stand up comedy for a while, so it was interesting to see how all of the comics have aged over the years. And it was fun trying to recall their names. So, if you're into stand up, you might like this--unless you are easily offended, then you might as well forget about it.