Hubby and I were asleep by 10:30. On a Friday night. And while I remember the days when we wouldn't even go out until then, there is no possible way for us to live that way. It doesn't not jive with our lifestyle [or lack thereof] or our schedules.

So we're lame. And we were awake and around by 7:30am. And we have no children. An ambitious, punk of a cat, yes. But he can be tossed off the bed with little to no guilt.

Speaking of scheduling, this summer will be another testament to the "We never see each other, so we get along FABULOUSLY" adage. I have only a slight idea of how intense this summer's work schedule will be...and it's starting, for all intents and purposes, in 2 weeks. I've heard that my boss has on more than one occassion slept in her office. And she lives only a few miles from the office.

I live across the river in another state.

I should probably put a nice outfit in my gym bag for just-in-case.

While I'm really looking forward to the excitement and the craziness [I know - you say that now, newbie.] it's going to be strange. Hubby finishes grad school in a month and a half. So as I'm gearing up for mass craziness, he'll be relaxing for the first time in 2 years. When I finished grad school and he entered his program, I have to admit that I was pretty bummed. He was stressed all the time, had no time to hang...and it's been like that for the past 2 years. I give him a HUGE amount of credit - he's been keeping us afloat financially at a stressful job that he only marginally likes while putting himself through school. So he definitely deserves the break. But I'm a little sad that I won't be able to hang out with him as much as I'd like.

I was trying to schedule a weekend out of town before things get nuts. It's not going to work. He's got too much going on a work, and a big trip for school [to China - how cool is that?] in the next month. I'm going to take a weekend off for graduation, but I think the next time that I'll get 2 consecutive days off will be in August. Seems like a long time away.

So I hope that he has time to work on his golf game. [Yeah, I know, my schedule is probably just breaking his little heart...all that time alone...might just as well work on his game...] And that come July, when I'm sleeping at the office, that's he's not too upset.

Today we have plans to meet some of his cousins at the Mall [the National Mall, not the shopping mall] for a walk and a picnic. Then this evening one of his classmates is having a house party. I hate meeting his classmates - I get so self concious.

Wish me luck, internet.


jeremy irons...

is dying on my tv.

and i still think that he is hot. with the pallor and the suitcases under his eyes.

I'm watching Elizabeth I, and the rhythm seems very strange. Every other scene is a big speech, full of cheering commonfolk. I want to see her sitting in the royal bed with a box of royal bonbons and gossipping with her lady-in-waiting.

Time to turn the channel. Sorry, Helen, you're awesome, but "how do i look" with the trashy grandmother is on. See ya.



So my friend K came to visit this weekend. It really is nice to be able to hang out with someone who knew all your stupid stories, knew about all the bad boyfriends and booty calls, and still hops on a plane to spend a weekend hearing you retell all the same damn stories about the same damn bad boyfriends over pizza and red wine. And if you happen to drink two bottles of prosecco in one evening of aforementioned weekend, well then that's just bonus.


25 hour days

By the time I rolled out of work, ran some errands and grabbed a bite to eat it was dark out. No walk for me tonight. Damn.

It's 70 degrees and sunny. a bee-you-tee-ful spring day

Totally unfair.

i just need one more hour, darn it.


Spring cleaning

I've found that the best way, nay the only way, to get me to clean my house well is to extend an invitation to friends to come over. This weekend, since my dear hubby is away at school, two girlfriends from da 'burgh are joining some local buddies for a Bitch and Wine party at the house! Girls only - no boys allowed!

I have bought wine. WAY more than we'll drink.

[I think...]

I have cleaned the baseboards and washed the walls.
I have vacuumed enough cat hair to make another cat.

Even if it's not totally clean, I've reached the point of "Good effort. Let's drink."
I have yet to do the shopping. Hors d'oeuvres, dessert, and risotto [it's supposed to be rainy and chilly... I think risotto is the way to go.] My favorite part is buying oodles of flowers for the house.

Pretty flowers distract from the dust.



Packed in like peeps

Happy Easter!

I was in church, although it had less to do with a compulsion to worship and more to do with the fact that I was playing the piano for a service and had already been paid for it. It was in the chapel, which is an 80-seat building that was the first Catholic church in the district . [dating from the 1800s I think...]

And it was going to be fun - my best friend from High School that I always talk about was cantoring. So it was just like what we used to do for fun, except it was church music instead of show tunes and "The Green Dog." And her brother-in-law was playing the trumpet - a family affair!

Remember I said 80-seat building.

So we're there early - and the room is packed. There's no time for me to practice anything on the organ, as there are already 40 people in the sanctuary by the time we're done talking through the service. So I'm playing piano instead, and sitting with my back to all the action. Awesome.

And the people keep coming. Well-dressed families and kids in their Easter finery squishing in to every corner of the tiny space.
Packing in like sardines, like the priest is going to give out "Get-out-of-Hell-FREE" gift cards.

Which means that I can't see though the wall of heads between me and the action on the altar.

And there are way more that 100 people in this little room.

And no matter how cute that bag is, lady, I'd appreciate it if you didn't swing it at my head as I'm trying to create another prelude on the spot. I've already played the four chords I know in 3 keys for 20 minutes, and frankly haven't had enought coffee to be brilliant in a hot room at 9 am. With your daughter bouncing against the small of my back. She's adorable, yes, but she's just killing me.

But even with all of that, me jumping the priest once or twice {let's get this show on the road, Man-Of-God! If the Lord didn't like speed, he would've given me a lude before I showed up this morning!} and the total omission of the baptismal rite {hey - I even knew how to play THAT one!} , I think it went well. I stayed out of the way enough that people could worship as they wanted to, had fun playing with D. and K. [now that's probably not a sentence I'd usually associate with church!], and even got a compliment on one of my cheezy little preludes. Ta da!

I've always gone to church, and have always felt pretty secure in that spiritual way, but I don't often go unless I have something musical to do. And I was raised Catholic, but have spent significant times in other demoninations and faiths. And i like most of them...I fall somewhere on the continuum between devout and don't-care, with the people who believe in being good to others, but don't subscribe to the my-way-or-the-highway rigidity. And i really like it if the people sing - that's the big issue for me. I'll come back if the music is well done and the congregation sings.

But now we are entering the post-penalty phase of Easter. The time when, because I have given up eating things with faces for the last 40 days, I can contemplate the purchase and ingestion of meat. I have no doubt that it will make me a little queasy, but I care not. I have been dreaming of bacon double cheeseburgers.

And yea, I say unto thee, this is the day of the risen Lord, the egg-carrying Bunny, and the bacon-double cheeseburger.
Amen, Alleluia!


I almost forgot!

In honor (?!) of the Easter Bunny, check out this site:


My favorites are Jaws and The Shining. Awesome, Mrs. Torrence.


Well, it's almost Easter.


I sang at a church in Pittsburgh for several years that advocated doing 3 things for Lent: giving up something, trying something new, and reflecting or praying daily. I think it's a much better approach than just giving something up. So I gave up meat [am still doing seafood, otherwise I'd eat only bread and cheese. Which actually doesn't sound so bad....], have been trying to get my butt
off the couch several days a week, and have been doing the reflection thing while doing the get-the-butt-off-the-couch thing. I think better when I'm moving.

My father invariably gives up watermelon seeds every year. Yep, he almost never cheats.

Being brought up Catholic, when you gave something up you gave it up for the duration and then earned that BIG pig-out session on Easter Sunday. But my Episcopal colleagues at my old school said that you get to eat what you "gave up" every Sunday, because each Sunday is a feast day.

And that, to me, is totally cheating.

I'm not a fanatic - I think that there is room everyone's views and beliefs - lots of doors and windows in God's house, right? But it makes me feel good to have set a goal and kept it thus far. If I can do this, maybe there are other things that I can do.

A brochure came for training sessions for half-marathons and marathons... I kept it. I might not do it, but it feels good to think that I can.

Was it Goethe that said that restrictions set us free? Whoever it was, thanks.


getting past the booze flu

Palm Sunday morning. No church for me, folks. No, I was sleeping off a touch of the booze flu. I'm now so lame that I can't mix anything, not even white wine and 2 sips of a margarita.

But did I stay in bed all day? NO!

[did i really REALLY want to? oh yeah.]

But it was beautiful outside...sixty degrees and sunny. A perfect spring day. So I threw on sneakers and went to walk in the park. And Hallelujah! The section of the trail's that's been closed for almost two years was OPEN! We had access to it for about 8 months after we moved in, and then have been gazing longingly through the orange fencing, wondering if we'd ever be able to walk on it again.

Oh, it was lovely. Hangover banished, blood moving, feeling good. Lovely.

So lovely that, after running some errands and such, I put my sneakers BACK on and went back. It was just awesome. One reason that I'm ok with our teeny little house is its proximity to the river and the park.

AND hubby somehow knew that I was feeling unsettled [that's another post] and snuck a lovey card into my Sunday paper. His sixth sense is working just fine.

A good Sunday.


Sacred Saturday Morning

It's my favorite kind of Saturday morning. The kind when the sky is dark grey, it's drizzly and dreary outside and I can stay in bed, drinking coffee, reading the newspaper, listening to music and dozing with impunity. Maybe do some laundry so that I can sit on the couch surrounded by toasty clean clothes...or not.

(realistically, not.)

My favorite part is daydreaming about new houses. As a kid we'd move every three or four years. In college the yearly schlep to a new dorm room, apartment or house was something I looked forward to as a way to shake up my life, purge all of the crap I'd collected over the past year, meet new people. To reinvent myself in a new place.

Moving to DC was a real trip. The differences in housing prices between DC and Pittsburgh? HA! We seriously contemplated getting the biggest refrigerator box we could find, parking it by the Potomac and calling it home. But a week before our wedding (!), we were lucky enough to find and buy a house in the DC area in 2003. It's a little townhouse near a national park, so there are great trails to hike. One of the things I like best is being able to walk by the river early in the morning.

But it's small. One bathroom. No porch or gas stove, two things that I really REALLY want. We could add both of those things, I know, but I'm not sure if the money would be reflected as profit should we sell it. And it just doesn't seem like a house that I want to raise a family in.

So my Saturday will be spent browsing ads, reading real estate stories. Drooling over homes with wrap-around porches and big kitchens. Weighing the benefits of condo living versus lawn maintenance. Wondering if you really can sleep on a "sleeping porch." Aaaahhh...

On the dogsitting front, Petey and Lucky have decided to pointedly ignore each other. Kitty wants to hang out, dog is not amused. I think we'll all sleep well tonight!


Camp Dan

My good friend from high school, her awesome hubby and their super-cool dog moved to town about 2 years ago. It's been great - it's always nice to have someone around that knows you and likes you anyway AND will ditch work for a pedicure with minimal arm-twisting.

And one of the innumerable perks is dogsitting. We have no dog at this point, the training and the grad school and the work schedules conspiring against the fair treatment of a creature without opposable thumbs and a need to poop outside. So, like Club Med, we serve as an occassional resort for a particular four-legged friend. Petey comes to Camp Dan, pees all over the great state of Maryland, chases the deer and drools on all the neighborhood kids. BIG fun, I tell you!

So hubby and I are babysitting Petey, a newfoundland mix. Every other time that Petey has come to Camp Dan, he's been (pardon the pun) Top Dog. BUT kitty has since claimed the house, all property and the denizens that dwell therein. And Petey is pissed. Lucky wants to be downstairs with his humans, but everytime he sneaks down the dog barks and chases him halfway up the stairs.

But dear Petey is an older gentleman, and is wearying of walking the beat. And everytime he gets comfy, Lucky sneaks downstairs, gets a tad too close, and startles the bejeezus out of the dog. Toss in thunderstorms [what animal DOESN'T love a good booming storm?!] It is melodrama a la Charlie Chaplin.

(Our amusement is probably directly related to how lame we are and how much we need to get out of the house. I'm totally okay with that.)

Hope you all are having a relaxing night.