Friday, November 29, 2013

Thanksgiving Post

Happy Post Thanksgiving. We had such a wonderful day yesterday. I had everyone of my family members with me and what great feeling. We enjoyed our traditional Holiday at The Turning Stone Casino and everything was perfect. All six of us were off early to meet up with Mark's mother and my parents for a Holiday "stuff our face" at the buffet.
(My computer will still not let me manipulate this page so I am sorry if it does not look all pretty.) First things first I had to get a few family photo's and perhaps I will make one of them into our Holiday cards.
This is the one I am thinking for Holiday cards. I has all of us minus the pups. Maybe I can get a nice one of the two of them and add it to the corner. After pictures, we had some Bube time as this is also Hanukah, and she always gives gifts.
She gave us all gift cards as well as some cards for meals at our favorite eateries. How nice. Dinner/lunch whatever you want to call it was held at the Harvest Buffet. As I mentioned in previous posts was yummy. I didn't have one bit of turkey or any of the traditional thanksgiving foods. In fact I ate breakfast, a little mac and cheese and lots of deserts, including 1/2 moon cookies. I love those.
After filling our guts to the max, we took a stroll through Gingerbread Alley. These gigantic Gingerbread houses are featured every year and are truly amazing. Had we not just eaten so man deserts, I might be tempted to grab a bite.
I had a little fun capturing these little elves while, Nick and Lexi posed with Santa.
Lexi steals a kiss from the Nutcracker.
As the theme of Christmas continued throughout the Casino halls we made our way back to Bube's for swimming suits and the kids and I went swimming and spent some time in the hot tub.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Ramblin on and on and on...

There really hasn't been much going on and certainly no places I'm going. The last few days have been spent working, I have today off and plan to do 1001 things in preparation for the rest of the week. I work Wed. and Friday as well. What was I thinking when I said yes? Thursday plans include all of us off to the Turning Stone for Thanksgiving. I know it sounds strange, and when Mark and I first had thanksgiving at a casino, I thought it was weird then too, but its actually been a nice tradition where everyone has fun, there is no prep work no clean up and everyone finds something they like to eat even if it is a hamburger. The additional bonus is the gambling, the holiday decorations, including the Gingerbread village, and who else can say they can go swimming or hang in a hot tub on Thanksgiving in NY state? On thanksgiving day the place is always packed so, regardless of how strange it may seem, plenty of others seem to enjoy the not so traditional day at the casino as well. I am actually looking forwards to the trip. We have changed our meal planning with regards to the Holiday feast and some years we pay the extra cash for the dining room, which we have done on Easter and we did on Mothers day this past year, but most of the crew enjoys the buffet and we have more often taken that path for this Holiday. I have never been a big cook and even if I have held a Thanksgiving feast at our home, I have had as I joking say; Danny Wegman came to our house and made us dinner. People look at me oddly, and I have to clarify, Wegmans (a pretty popular grocery store in the area) sells a box that includes the turkey, the gravy, the stuffing, the green beans, the cranberries and the rolls and all I do is stick it in the oven. That is the kind of Thanksgiving meal I can prepare. My parents have also been known to make this traditional holiday meal and I do enjoy this as well, but since Marks father passed away we have been more apt to spend it outside of the home. Gavin has announced that he has no intentions of going with me to NY City in two weeks, so one of my 1001 plans for today is to see if I can get a refund for his ticket. (crossing my fingers) I plan to use that cash to go to the top of the Empire State building and eat lunch. This means I will actually be stepping into the YMCA and I have not been in over two weeks, which leads me to the thoughts and discussions my Husband and I have had for the last few years, why are we still paying $73- a month for the Y-membership? I used to go nearly everyday (that was about two years ago) the kids went on average three times a month, and even my daughter was going on a fairly regular basics, but of the last few years none of us have been going on any kind of ongoing basics and there is so much more that the money could go towards. Additionally we have discussed ideas about dropping some of the cable pay channels and the record device (see I don't even know what it is called). Those two additional add on's to our plan are costing us something around $35-$40 extra to our Time Warner bill. I seem to get myself hooked into these monthly direct w/d things and before I know it the money has been taken out, for example last spring I signed up for newspaper service, and although I enjoy the paper, I typically do not read any of the weeks news and into the recycle bin it goes. The Sunday paper is an important piece of my week as that is where I get my coupons, and I really don't know if I would save all that much by CA, and simply spending the $2- each week at the store, perhaps I should search it out. I have also been spending $10.99 a month direct w/d for my daughters tanning, and at one point I was being charged $39.99 a month for Proactive for my daughter and if I hadn't yelled at the company rep. I still would be billed today. These both were suppose to be a one time shot last Christmas, which I thought I was doing in the cheep. I am also being charged for darling daughters phone bill, which was once my phone and my phone bill, but I suppose I will accept this one. Basically, I am being sucked of my money by my own stupidity. Stupidity and money has been a long standing issue for most of my life. I will avoid giving you all of you the boring details and just tell you...if it seems to good to be true it likley is. I made it to the YMCA and they will be issuing me a check for my CA seat. Yeah. There is my fun money for the trip and selfishly I only have to take care of me. I got some Holiday gifts taken care of, I still have tons to get, and every year I say to year I am going to be prepared for Christmas and have everything done well in advance. It never seems to happen. Should I make that goal one more time? The YMCA was fun and it was a special day as this week they are doing a Family Fun week for Thanksgiving. After the treadmill I got myself a bowl of Hamburger Soup, I have never heard of such a thing. It was..."OKAY" I guess, there were five soup choices and although my first choice was the Cheese Broccoli it was not fully heated, the Hamburger was not very hot either. It was a nice gesture and the breads also offered were good. There is a family breakfast scheduled for today, but the liklihood that any of my family is up to enjoy it is a big NO. There seems to be some great things that the Y offers, and honestly if my family would go it would be nice. There are always things going on,but my kids are just not that excited about seeing Santa, or doing crafts or learning all about Science in the fun. They used to, but now its video games, they seem to dominate the boys existance. I did get a few Christmas items although not much. Again I NEED to be more prepared for next year. I am realizing that the older the kids get the harder to buy for. I was waiting for my pictures to develop and had time to stroll the Walmart and there were no toys that any of the kids would be interested in what so ever. Everything is electronics now a days, and even sale prices for that stuff is CRAZY. I read once where a family gave future trips for the kids for Christmas. Things like a trip to the zoo, or a museum. My kids are even getting sick of that. Maybe they are so over indulged throughout the year they don't get so excited about things like that. On our last full family vacation I had to beg my oldest to go to Disney World of all things. He would rather stay home and spend time with his friends. Really? He went of course and I know he had a good time, but what kid doesnt want to go to Disney? Since my youngest only has requested the X-box one for his wish list, (I have refused to indulge this one) and he has not given me other ideas, he will be getting things he needs like socks, underwear and things like that. Sorry buddy, going to have to be a little more reasonable. He may even get a lesson in having less. I know he is aware of the fact that there are some kids out there who have nothing, but maybe I need to really show him what that means. Any suggestions? I'll have to brain storm on that idea. He's to young to work in the soup kitchen I already looked into that. I have rambled on to much and realize that there are way to many wrongs in things then rights after the reflection this writing has caused. I hate change...and so does my family. Some of us would rather ride the bike of life with the wheel slightly bent and ignore that the seat dips as we ride, then stop and fix it. Kind of sucks! All something to think about. Thanks for listening...TTFN, I unfortunately have work today and have a few things that need to be addressed before I head out.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Dog Park, SNOW, OTB, and Church.

Saturday was an interesting day of things going on. We all headed to the Dog Park to get the animals out and running. At that time, it was not snowing and there were no signs it would. Peanut stood close by shivering even in his doggy coat, and Riley played hump dog to the several males in heat who found him most attractive. I have to say it was funny, Riley had no idea what to do, several times there was a threesome of dogs, poor Riley at the bottom. I laughed way to many times at this scene. Sorry I have no pictures, but it would have been a funny one for sure. After the park, We took Mark to OTB for lunch. I must admit they had some YUMMY burgers and GREAT fries. Mark got his rush and played a few bucks, I believe he won some money, but I didn't even ask. Once home, Gavin and I played Christmas music, made hot chocolate and worked on our new puzzle. I just love this time of year, and the holiday music always brings back the memories of family and happy times. We both sang along with the several versions of Frosty and White Christmas, with the season busting from our hearts.
Then all of a sudden we look outside and there is SNOW falling all over. It was falling fast and hard. It made the song singing and the hot chocolate taste even yummier.
This was Riley's first snow and he LOVED it. Peanut HATES the snow and the cold.
I'd like to say that the snow stopped right there with a nice dusting, but it snowed all afternoon and we now have quite a covering all over. AS the evening progressed and we enjoyed the inside, I got myself ready for church as I had invited Jenny (my neighbor) and Tammy to attend church with me. I had to work today and would not have made the Sunday morning mass. I have not been to church in so long, and as I entered into the sanctuary and the music hit my ears I felt a warmth of belonging rush over me. Why have I been so LAZY for so LONG. What a blessing to have Tammy and Jenny join me too.
After church the three of us went to Friendly's for coffee and chit chat. We ate some junk too, but we talked for nearly an hour and a half. It was a wonderful joyous day!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Better days..weekend begins.

Friday was interesting. My neighbor and I had made very relaxed plans for the day, and once I had dropped of my little man, I simply waited patiently for her to contact me about some trip some where. We had discussed a few ideas; The Erie Canal Museum has Gingerbread houses on display, there is always the zoo, and I was at a loss for much of anything else. Her three yr old twins are not yet old enough to enjoy some of the areas museums or indoor locations, so our to go was limited. She called and thought Rochester's Strong Museum would be fun, and I totally agree; infact I had thought that would be a great idea, but it was already nearing 10:30 and its an hour and 1/2 drive to Rochester. Not exactly a trip I am prepared to take, knowing it will take her at least another hour to get herself and the girls prepared, and get myself back before 4pm to get Gavin off the bus. Sorry....maybe next time. SO we PONDER...finally we decided upon Beaver Lake although we never made it, but instead she treated me to Lunch at Zebbs.
I love Zebs, and I haven't been in forever. I had the soup and salad, which was bottomless, and Jenny got us some chedder fries as well. Nothing says healthy lunch with a side of cheese FRIES. The salad was good, and the French onion soup was too.
The girls had some fun foods and enjoyed coloring.
I left fully satisfied and enjoyed every little bite I filled up was YUMMY!
I will admit, I do not miss having a meal out with little children, its a lot of work, and taking pictures with little kids is even more difficult when your holding their little hands. We never made it to Beaver Lake, we stopped at a Thrifty Store in Mattydale, NY (one neither of us had been to, and it was all over). I was prepared in that I only had a little bit of cash on me, but Jenny went wild. I entertained her daughters while she shopped, and we had the best time...I think we touched just about every nick knack in the store, played will all the toys, did some shopping cart racing and lost Jenny several times. I picked up a few items for my family and got the girls some decent looking Barbies as we waited for their mom to hurry up and get done. Plan was to go to the indoor Micky D's playplace before we headed home as Beaver lake was on the opposite side of town, but it was nearly 4pm already. Can you say...waste to much time in the Thrifty Store? Come on Jenny....We made one last stop at Olies I waited and waited and waited in the car with the girls and then it was time to go home.
The girls fell asleep even as I sang my best Frosty the Snowman, and twinkle twinkle little star. It was a fun day full of adventure, even if we never got to our destination. Strong Museum is in our future, as is Micky D's Playplace. The evening was planned to attend a night out being socially aware of homelessness, however Gavin backed out on the documentary scheduled called @Home. Instead Mark went out, which never happens and Gavin and I spent the evening working on a puzzle. Carol and her son stopped by to wish me a happy birthday and she gave me a wine glass. It was very nice of her. Kelly called to wish me a Happy Birthday too, and Gavin and I ended the evening watching the season finale of An American Horror Story. He was a little disappointed the season ended the way that it did. I was satisfied, but I was not happy with the direction the baby goes...I will not say anymore. Overall it was a great day. Now I am about to head out the door with my girlfriends to attend church.

Difficult trip, just summarizing

It has been a difficult week. There have been two deaths, and several struggles that friends have been dealing with and my own woes. A dear old friend of mine past away last Thursday, his loss was incredibly unexpected and a tragic realization that pain can run so deep there does not seem to be any way out. A reality that life is precious and to enjoy the things I have to be grateful for. He will be sadly missed. I had known George since I was a kid. Cousin to my neighbor Pat, and we all grew up together. He was always there to lend a shoulder offer a supportive ear, never reported a complaint to anyone, and always had a smile on his face. His death and the cause filled me with overwhelming sadness tainted with anger. Why rushed over me, and I guess it will be a question I will never know the answer to. His services were held Tuesday evening, and it was well attended, it was clear he was loved dearly by many. I did get to see a few friends that I usually do not see. Unfortunately death seems to be the things that gets us all together, live events go forward unaware of what we are each doing. We all spoke preventing missed opportunities in the future, vow to spend time or happier occasions. I know how that goes, we've said it before, and find ourselves again making those same vows at yet another passing. Of our close group of friends that all grew up together we have loss three lives at tender young ages. There have been more positives of course; weddings, births of babies, families developed, birthdays, holidays but as the years have gone by, I know we will be seeing one another more often at saddened events. It had been 8 months since I had last seen George, possibly as sad as it is, more recent then most, but 8 months still seems like a lifetime in relevance. Would the loss have been any less had I spent time with him days before? I don't have that answer either, but I do know that when a friend leaves this earth, it makes me clearly aware that we only are granted this moment in time and that I need to take advantage of those moments. I am hopeful that we will all get together again soon on a festive moment, where we are laughing and enjoying each others company. I did also get to see an old friend who I have not seen in perhaps 9-10 years. My middle school friend, who also lived with me a few times growing up, Lisa. She and I had some crazy history and some great adventures. She has been struggling with Lukemia, and is currently in the Syracuse area to have a transplant. Her battle with this disease and the attitude she has about beating this battle is amazing. Never have I seen someone so pro-active and positive about dealing with all that comes with a diagnosis of cancer. She boldly attended the services with her hat removed for the world to see the remnants of chemo, and smiled a wide smile when meeting with people she has not seen in years. Her ability to not allow discouragement to get in her way has been amazing. I am hopeful for her, and was grateful to have the time to spend with her. I called another dear friend,Jeanine who had sent me a Birthday card and a phone number.I had not spoken with in over a year; as her number was disconnected and I had no way of contacting her, so her card was a double joy for me. Speaking with her was wonderful, but she did suffer a tragic loss herself since our last discussion. She had loss her mother. At my age, I guess I should realize that our parents are getting older, including my own. Although I never met Jeanine's mother, I know that her loss was great and painful. Her reports of her loss and dealing with family business is a true reality to what most of us must face with our own aging parents. It is a sad thing to lose loved ones. On an upside I was glad to speak with her and know that despite such a loss she herself is well and managing. Like many of us, she is dealing with finances, work stress, and like myself..still trying to figure it all out. Plans to visit her soon, perhaps this spring, she is currently on the cape and we would all love to see her. Gavin insisted on speaking with "Aunt" Jeanine and making a visit soon. So far this blog entry has been not so fun, but the difficulties continue. My neighbor has been struggling with her own inner demons, I have been trying to be supportive, but find it difficult to offer support. Her concerns are bigger then a friend can be. I can only offer support and kindness. It has none the less, been an added burden to my already crazy week, but perhaps the most directed related stressor was on my birthday of all days I am informed that the IRS has not agreed to work with us, and they will be taking my wages. We did get that all straighten out, but it was an increase in the stress level. Anyways, it has been a difficult week. My birthday being in the middle of it didn't help much, but...happy birthday to me!!! The week has looked up, and I am hopeful for better days, looks like we shall be re-evaluating things here at home, I know I will be counting my blessings and looking at things differently. Thank you dear followers although I have none, for allowing me to publish.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Birthday Dinner

I worked during the day at Vera House on Monday, but my parents treated me and two of my boys to a Birthday dinner at TGI Fridays. I was so yummy. I enjoyed the pecan crusted salad and they actually sang Happy Birthday to me.
 The waitress was so great and the meal was one of my favorites at Fridays.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A little "Psyched" or NOT!

Sunday, I met up with the girls and we went to a Psychic Fair. I haven't been to one of those in years and we have been talking about having a psychic party for some time. I had no plans on getting my cards read or anything, but I anticipated that some of the other girls would. It was a let down to find out that no one but Renee was willing to fork over the $50- price tag for a 15 minute reading. I might have, just for fun paid $30- for 15 minutes, but that $50- price tag had most of us done before we even started.
 Lets not to mention the admission price to this tiny display of everything supernatural was $7-. Maybe I am just not as into this kind of stuff as I once was, but it all was terribly disappointing. Even the psychic's that lined the back walls with their little booths were OPEN and ready for customers, the entire time we were there. Any past experience with these "fairs" have had wait times and long lines. Even the items for sale seemed highly priced. I noted a really pretty necklace and after viewing the $700- price tag I was shocked.
 Here is Renee with Deb her psychic. She reportedly gained some insight and was happy to have her spirts read . She even tear'd up a bit when referencing her deceased Grandmother as being present with her. Glad she enjoyed herself. We did get some free bags from and you all know how much I love FREE, there was also some neat displays and I thought these rocks were really cool. (but I refuse to pay for rocks...sorry).
 We finally all decided that we had seen enough and even with some begging from me, the other girls refused to get a reading. I spoke with a few of the clearly BOARD psychics about my own tarot reading history, and my frusteration with my friends for not obtaining readings themselves. Both Cathy and Doreen admitted they were a little scared, and Molly like me who has had these done in the past, refused to pay the piper. After we had circled and re-circled and circled at least five more times the small space allotted for this event, we agreed we had seen enough and made our way to brunch at Denny's.
I love Denny's and I have not ben in years. I had my traditional burger and fries and even added ranch dressing. Molly has been doing weight watchers and has lost nearly 40 pounds, Way to go girl, Of course I felt like a royal pig as she calculated her points for her lunch. I'll get there soon. We had a nice time together and despite discussion around planning, it appears that it is unlikely that we will all get together again like this until after the Holidays. These busy times can make you crazy. After the lunch I tried to listen to Renee's session that was recorded with difficulty from the background noise, so instead I let her verbalize what she remembered. Once home I took a quick nap and was off to work at the Willows inpatient. I was there till 12:30am.....I'd prefer not to do that crazy shift again.