Thursday, May 28

the agony and the ecstasy

Jake had an ortho appointment yesterday. We've been expecting his braces to come off since January, so we were really hoping that this would be it (not that they would be taking them off yesterday, but that he'd be fitted for a retainer and the removal appointment would be scheduled). Typically, his check-up appointments are pretty quick, so I got hopeful because the appointment lasted longer than normal. Jake and the tech eventually emerged and the tech informed me that Jake was fitted for a retainer and would be getting his braces off at the next appointment. Woo!

So, we went to the counter to schedule his next appointment and was told that they could remove the braces in August. August! I blurted out something to the effect that we were expecting the appointment to be sooner (Jake's cousin recently went through the same thing, at the same place, but it was a two week wait for her), but I was met with a blank look. So, he's getting them off in August.

I guess the good news is that the date is set and they are coming off for sure (no more "maybes").

Monday, May 25

long weekend

I was ready for a long weekend. So far, it's been good (with one exception). Due to the late frost, we had a lot of planting to do this weekend. Most of it has been completed, and the rest will be wrapped up today. Friday was nothing special--just like any other Friday. Saturday, we went to a cookout at my brother's. Sunday, we purchased a bunch of plants and some fish for the pond, and also did some planting. Brian also got the bikes ready and we went for our first ride of the year. Today promises to be pretty relaxing--there's no real agenda beyond gardening and another bike ride.

The only negative is that Lizzy is having some minor back problems. Of course, this would start up on a holiday weekend when the vet's office is closed. I received previous instructions to put her on steroids in that type of scenario, so I started those yesterday. She actually seems better today but I'm going to keep her confined to her crate until I can get in touch with the vet tomorrow and find out the best course of action.

Thanks to my birthday, I get another long weekend next week. Yay!

Friday, May 22

making an impact

Brian was a finalist in the PA Governor's ImPAct Awards in the entrepreneur category. The ceremony was held yesterday in Hershey, so the two of us got to skip a day of work (it was kind of nice--I think I'm sick of work). Unfortunately, he did not win. Not surprisingly, the award went to a much larger company (New Pig out of Tipton). Still we got a lot of good press out of the nomination and, more importantly, made some new business contacts.

Tuesday, May 19

the adventures of tom sawyer

Obviously, this book is a classic and I don't need to go into the details of the plot. I added it (and a bunch of others) to my Kindle from one of those free book websites, just for the heck of it--I don't normally go for the classics. I liked it well enough, but it did take me a while to finish. I just didn't find it compelling enough to read on a regular basis (not with all of the other distractions I'm surrounded by).

My rating: 3.5/5

Monday, May 18


As previously documented I ordered a new filter for my garden pond. I got everything installed only to realize that I was missing a part. The part wasn't necessary for the general operation of the filter, but was needed for the cleaning cycle. I contacted the manufacturer of the filter via their website, but did not hear a response. So, I started thinking about ways to rig something for the missing part. One day last week, I received a package with the missing part in it. For the win!

In other winning news, my parents hosted the annual birthday party for my brother and me yesterday. Gift highlights included a digital antenna for our television (one step closer to cancelling cable) and a Kindle gift card (I can always use some new books).

Friday, May 15

three more years

Jake turned 15 on Wednesday and we went out to eat at a restaurant of his choice (Rey Azteca--for a number of years running) to celebrate. He is definitely growing up. He is doing excellent in high school--straight As so far this year without any prompting or help from us; he's doing great with his music--he played guitar in a "coffeehouse" event last month and played drums at a chorus concert last night (both at the high school) and he has a wide variety of friends that all seem to be level-headed. So far, so good. Three more years until adulthood!

Sunday, May 10


I need to delay Jake's birthday by about two weeks. Unfortunately, his family party is today. While, I worked my butt off the past few weeks, the yard is still not in order. Plus there's a pile of garbage in our front yard--spring cleanup always seems to fall during his party. On the plus side, since the weather has been so warm, I have most of my garden planted. And, today's weather is supposed to be nice.

Saturday, May 9


This movie was about a kid going to a music conservatory and his ambitions to be one of the best drummers ever. Brian and Jake really liked it. I thought it was fine. I mean the acting was great and all, but the story was a little weak, if you ask me. Also, I don't like jazz and that's the genre that was being represented.

My rating: 3/5

Monday, May 4

in a nutshell

I feel like I got my money's worth out of this weekend. One project was completed, another one is well underway and we even fit in a family event (my step-niece's first communion party).

Last fall, we redid the decking and railing on the back porch at the office. Due to the way the previous railing was designed, this involved some patching of the brick and also resulted in some unpainted areas (all of the building's brick is painted). Additionally, some new wooden trim pieces were installed and they also needed to be painted. When we did the project, it was too cold to paint, but not anymore. Jake and I primed everything on Saturday and Brian and I painted on Sunday. Cross that one off the list.

We're also in the midst of reworking the pond and that is progressing nicely. Thus far, we've removed the stream, installed all of the hardware, and have the base rocks down. I also sealed the waterfall with landscape foam last night, so I'll be able to turn the pump on again today. I'll let that run for a day or so to make sure there are no leaks and then we'll cap off the rocks and call it done.