Monday, November 30, 2009

"Where is the orderly, controlled, effective Dexter? How did I lose him?"

Best show ever -- Dexter, on Showtime.
Hands down.

If you haven't seen it -- I highly recommend you do. Start with Season 1, and I guarantee it will lure you in. Every episode I think "how can it get better than this?!?!" and yet - every episode, every season -- it does. The character quirks, the storylines, the monologues and character development are all outstanding.

Imagine.... who ever thought that a show about a serial killer could illicit compassion and even affection towards a character with the kinds of traits that are reprehensible? It sort of puts into perspective the fact that life isn't black and white....there are always shades of gray.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Black Friday....Happy Friday!

You know what the only bummer to not cooking on Thanksgiving is?
Not having leftovers.

I could totally go for a yummy turkey sandwich right now.
Instead, I'll settle for take out - because I don't have the ambition or motivation to cook at the moment. I was supposed to be attending a family engagement party tonight with the kids but I worked late - am tired, and they're exhausted still from last night and being out late - so to get them ready just isn't that appealing to me at the moment. So, takeout and snuggling up with the kiddies it will be.

I went shopping this a.m. before heading into the shop to get my holiday store decorations. I was very pleased with what I got at very reasonable prices! The store is going to look least I hope so. How it looks in my mind on how I want to set it up will hopefully come to fruition on Sunday morning. Later that day, we will be transforming our house to the Christmas mood as well, by setting up the tree. It's one of my most favorite days of the year. Pumpkin donuts, hot cocoa, cookies, holiday music and lots of ornaments. Truly - does it get much better than that?

The only thing about this year that I'm sorry I've missed is the Midnight Wretham run. However, I've already decided that I'm not going to work the day after Thanksgiving next year so that I can be sure to enjoy my dinner, and then head on down for a night filled of happy, happy shopping!

I don't know about any of you - but this girl is happy, thankful and tired.
Have a fabulous, frivolous, black Friday -- and may you be graced with spectacular sales!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Charlie Brown: We've got ANOTHER holiday to worry about. It seems Thanksgiving Day is upon us.

(Poor Charlie Brown. Always feeling on the downside of up...)

I'm thankful that I'm not cooking on Thanksgiving. Though truthfully, I enjoy cooking so much that despite the fact that I'm going to be working morning, noon and night tomorrow -- part of me still wishes I was making dinner.

That being said, I don't know that I'll get to post prior to the big day; so I'm presenting my list of what I'm thankful for at the present. Outside of the first one -- they're in no particular order of meaning.

1. Always thankful for the health of my family and friends. That above all means more than anything else.
2. For the fact that despite this economy, business is doing well. Opening a new business is always such a gamble, and so I'm thankful that we're able to pay the bills. Leaving my job was a big decision, and I'm very pleased that right now anyway -- it was a risk worth taking.
3. My children are constant souces of inspiration - and frustration. I mean that in the best possible way, because I'm thankful that they challenge me. In some ways, it allows me to think out of the box in my parenting, and enables me to continually try to be a better parent. While it may be a dictatorship in my house, I've learned that there is more than one way to skin (insert you favorite hunting creature HERE.) And for that, I'm very, very thankful.
4. I'm thankful that my mother's health seems to be settled down. That one's sort of separate from the first one. It wasn't a good year.
5. I've got a fantastic support system of friends. For that, I'm beyond thankful.
6. I'm thankful for my husband and children. So many people go through this life alone; and that's okay - sometimes that's out of a person's control; but I'm thankful that I have a family to enjoy life with.
7. I'm thankful that Jason Varitek will once again wear a Red Sox uniform. (C' know I had to squeeze a Jason reference in somewhere!!)

I hope that however you celebrate Thanksgiving - and with whomever - your day is filled with laughter, friendship and love.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Just some random thoughts.....

Do the incredibly cheesey Mohegan Sun commercials drive anyone else crazy?
They almost make my skin crawl.
They're that bad.

Why is it when you are genetically smaller and/or thinner than some people - they automatically assume that you have an eating disorder? I find that just bizarre.

Why are little people so loud?
Really, really, really loud?

Why are some people never happy and or satisfied? You can never do enough, do it right, or even satisfactorily enough for them to not criticize. Seriously, who can be that self righteous and perfect? No one I know, that's for sure.

Why I ever thought that having children of two different genders would prevent fighting is beyond me. Cats and dogs -- my kids give it a whole new meaning.

Everyone has their hand out. It amazes me at how many people expect things for free.
I never question a price on anything - if you tell me the price, I determine whether I want to purchase it or not. Not everyone feels the same way.....clearly. It's very interesting to me.

A positive attitude attracts people, while a negative attitude repels them. So, can a positive person help change a person who's negative become more positive? Or is it inherent, is it learned... is it habit?

These are the thoughts rambling around today....
What are you thinking about?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Mmmm, mmmm, good.....

I'm pretty darn tired.
It was a busy day today stocking the store - but then I flew home to shower before jetting out for a private wine tasting at a person's home tonight. I love doing those, they're so much fun - and I love, love, love to get people excited about drinking wine. This one was no different and lived up to my expectations. Lots of laughs, it was a great crowd.

But I'm sitting here now relaxing with a glass of Pinotage, eating the most delicious bread (one that I'm now going to be carrying at the store....I came home to a huge bag filled with delicious varieties sampled for me. Being in the food business isn't so terrible, let me tell you....!), olive oil that I seasoned myself, some fabulous Shelburne Farms 2 yr aged cheddar and a big ol' bowl of deliciously seasoned Kalamatta olives.

I don't think it gets much better than this....

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Silent night...holy night.

So, my friends at Seattle Grace are celebrating their Christmas dinner tonight.
What happened to Thanksgiving??
They skipped right over it.

Does this mean that they're already going on holiday hiatus?
Say it isn't so!

This season has surely made up for last season which was.....less than what I had anticipated.
But this season?
Both story lines -- and musical selections -- rock.

But still I wonder.....what happened to Thanksgiving?!?!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Two thumbs up and 5 stars.....

Let me preface this review by stating that I am not, in the slightest -- a Jim Carrey fan.
I am, however - a huge fan of Gary Oldman, and Robert Zemeckis.

"A Christmas Carol" is by far, the most artistically spectacular movie I've ever seen. The animation is second to none; similar to the "Polar Express" - the technology used in this film was so far beyond where "Polar Express" left off -- it's mindblowing. There are some moments that even in extreme closeups you question whether it's actors or animation that you're looking at.

The adaptation is pretty true to the Dickens story; there's some embellishment of sorts but for the most part it's almost the way I remember the book. Lets face it, England in the 1840s is rather dark and Dickens isn't the shiniest and happiest of authors -- but the magic of Zemeckis brings you right there and for a few moments in time you forget that you're in a theatre, and it's the new millenium.

My only real critique is that there's little interaction between Scrooge and Crotchet; I seem to remember a bit more detail into their relationship so that the connection to he and Little Tim made more sense than it did in the movie. I found that I needed to explain why he was so interested in that family, because to younger children who haven't read the classic yet - there was no true obvious tie between the two people; so I felt that the one glimpse we had of them working together was really outlined as an obvious assumption to those of us who grew up with the story all of these years.

Definitely not a movie for those under 8; Princess Petunia is no shrinking violet and at 5 1/2 - she was definitely startled and scared at times. She stuck it out, but as I said - Dickens isn't shiny and happy so even the prettiest of scenes are dark for little ones. That being said, this is absolutely a fabulous family movie -- and seriously, a great date night film.

We might even go see it again!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

What to do on a rainy Saturday.....

So, what to do on a rainy and lousy Saturday? Why not make a Gingerbread House?

Presenting the "I'm just a girl" kids and their 2009 creation of Chez Gingerbread:

Monday, November 16, 2009

That one got me.....right....(gasp)

Okay, so last night's football game sucked.
There's no other way to say it.

The Colts didn't beat us, so much as we lost. And now that the day is over, and Bill Belichick has done his press circuit for the day - it's been talked to death. But I'm still going to give my two cents on it.

Personally, I thought going for it on the 4th with 2 yards was a good call -- to me, it seemed like the best choice to make the win. Of course, knowing the possibility of what not making the conversion as well (which unfortunately came to fruition) -- it still seemed like a viable option. Not only was the defense clearly exhausted but to gain two yards surely isn't the impossible. That being said -- had I realized they had no timeouts left, maybe I would've felt differently; I thought they had one left which obviously - they didn't. Additionally, I really thought that it was our fabulous (but in my opinion clearly irritated) quarterback who really insisted on going for it -- it seemed like he plead his case to Belichick who in the end said "ok".

That wasn't the only gaff of the game though -- I think there's far too much focus on that one play. It was just the icing on the cake -- but let's be honest -the main reason they lost the game was that one drive where the Colts scored in under a minute. You can't go soft on any team with a lead, let alone the Colts and that is bigger than any judgement on whether to punt or not.

It's absolutely amazing how quickly people bash decisions. Had the call gone our way -- it would've been heralded as ballsy and brilliant. Yet it's so easy to be Monday morning quarterback.

Seriously, if that was anyone of you -- with only two yards to get first down -- and if you make it - the game is won, wouldn't you take that chance? Sometimes you have to take a gamble on yourself, and a coach took a gamble on his team.

And really now, who wouldn't gamble on the Patriots?

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Saturday Survey....

It's been some time since I posted a survey on Saturday... so here we go!

1. If you could have named yourself, which name would you have chosen, and why?
Gina. No one messes with Gina.
But other than that, I always liked the name Catherine.

2. If you could relive a year in your life, what age would it be, and why?
I don't know truthfully. They were all great years, with good and bad things alike. I can't answer that one, I can't pick just one.

3. If you could go back and change one friendship in your past, who would it have been, and why?
Now this is a good question. There are a few friendships I'd have liked to have done without.... but the one I'd have changed, probably would've been the one that was the most important to me growing up. It wouldn't have been a change of the friendship per se, but a change of my reaction to the changes that occured in the friendship. I'd have not be so quick to cut every one off and distance myself (Clearly, my feelings had been hurt. Typical defense mechanism, right?) and I'd have been more laid back about it realizing that it wouldn't have stayed that way forever. But, I was young - and these are life lessons we don't always have until we mature, and learn grace.

4. If you could have dated one person in your past that you did not date, who would it be, and why?
Hmmm. I don't know actually. I mean in school, there were boys that I wished liked me - but they didn't. I don't regret not dating them though. (Wait, does Jason Varitek count???)

6. If you had the opportunity to live in another country, which one would it be, and why? If you choose NOT to live in another country, why do you want to stay in your current country?
I would never live in any country other than ours. Never. It does not require an explanation.
I would however, consider dual residency with the following: Italy, France, Grand Cayman Islands.

7. If you could choose your dream job, what would it be, and why?
My dream job has changed so many times over the years. I'd say while I never really knew that it would be this particular field -- running my own store is pretty darn close.

8. If you could wish a wish and it be guaranteed to come true (other than riches) what would it be, and why?
Ah, but if I tell you my wish -- it won't come true......

9. If you could meet two blogger friends (you may choose more, if you wish) who would they be?
Nichole, Suldog, Dawn, Sarah.... and sure, I'd love to meet everyone - that goes without saying.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Stewie (at airport): I require a window seat and an inflight Happy Meal, and no pickles! God help you if I find pickles!

Does anyone do their job any more?

Get this, and please - someone correct me if my expectations were too high.

I ordered my labels for the store, on October 8th.
A simple order; 1 gold label squared, 1 gold label oval, 1 clear label oval.
All black ink.

I was told they'd be ready and in my store the day after I opened -- the 20th.
So, on the 24th when I hadn't received them I called the company and they said that I had been misinformed, and that they would be at my location until the 28th of October.

So, on the 28th when they didn't arrive - I called. Just to find out that they claimed they were awaiting a proof approval from me via email. Yet, I never recieved a proof. Oh yes, I asked for one - but when I didn't receive it, I didn't think much of it and truthfully I had far too much on my plate to open so I didn't think about the proof. I bring up that little fact to the rep from the company and he says "oh, I see they emailed it to...." and the email he says -- is wrong. Mmmyeah, that could be an issue. So, I said give them the correct email and have them send it ASAP. Which they did......

To my surprise (why was I surprised? I'm wondering this now....) I receive a proof of three labels that are of my other store in Boston -- not the new store. All the info is wrong, there's artwork on it -- I just wanted plain, black text. So, I write them back and tell them unfortunately the proofs are all wrong and that I hope they have my order. So, I call customer service who reiterates the order I want over the phone -- and then proceeds to tell me that it's not THAT art department who would do my labels - it's the OTHER one (like I know the difference? I'm the customer, what do I know..?!?!) and then he apologizes and sends my order to the OTHER department. I receive the proof via email and they look terrible - so my being the background of designer - I relaid out the label and sent it back. I approved the proof, and asked for when they could be sent.

No reply.
I call Customer service, and express my interest in overnight delivery at their expense because this is just ridiculous - and they agree and say they'll get back to me.

They never get back to me.
Funny thing is, I receive yet ANOTHER proof the following day for me to approve. Of course I respond and say I already approved the day before, what am I receiving this for? So I get an email back saying it was an error, not to worry.

Except.... I never heard back about the express shipping. So, I call customer service on Monday to ask about it, and I get told that the labels were expected to ship on the 19th of November. You can imagine my response.... (You've GOT to be kidding me?!!?!?!)

Needless to say, I got my labels today. Oh yes, I got them.
They're wrong.

Wrong color ink. Wrong spacing on one of them. And one that should be clear, is gold.

Was I setting the bar that high?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

You know what I'm really in the mood for right now?

(A phone call from Jason Varitek celebrating the fact that he's staying in Boston? Yes, that too...but that wasn't where I was going with this post, truth be told. I knew he was staying -- there was no doubt in my mind, but that's a story for another day....)

That's one of the great things about being sick....when the fever breaks, I am hungry.
And typically, I'll eat things I wouldn't normally indulge in.

Like Oreos.

Interestingly enough....I think we might actually have some in the cookie jar!
See, when I go food shopping - I barely buy junk, like Oreos. Not that they're the worst thing in the world, but I just don't typically buy cookies and sweets. But when G goes -- we're stocked with not only cookies -- but Doritos which, we all know is Crack for this girl.

In my Snugglie no less. Can I just tell you? This is like one of the greatest creations ever. You can even use a hair clip to close it so when you wrap it around you, you're completely ensconsced in a blanket.

Love it!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Scratchy, Raspy, Rough and Sassy....

That would be my voice.
I totally have that laryngitis but now it's really deep and fading in and out - sort of like when you have a really bad chest cold.

Which, I do believe I have now.
That "laryngitis but I have no other symptoms" has evolved into a definite chest cold, complete with fever. Nothing a little Tylenol, Motrin and some good soup and tea can't fix, right?

I almost think that to a certain extent, at some level - because the store is doing well enough that for most shifts, outside of my calling to see if they're busy -- I don't necessarily need to check on them quite so much. Which is such a relief; so subconsciously I think I may have let my guard down and relaxed so that I actually can get sick. You know, the whole "mind over matter" for the past three weeks of my running on excitement and nervous energy, always keeping in the back of my mind that I have to be there, have to be always available. (of course, sampling 15 different wines yesterday, maybe not eating enough over the last three weeks because I'm too busy, staying up a little too late this past weekend... hmmmmkay, maybe that had a little something to do with it.)

Of course, with everything under the sun going around -- it's no shock I've caught some semblence of germ/bug/flu. But it's not going to keep me down.

Not going to keep me down.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Whistle while you work....

Can I just tell you -- even when I know I have a long day ahead of me (though, I just found out that tomorrow is not nearly the day I envisioned it to be...) I don't mind.

Customer service is something I love..... and to have the immediate gratification of seeing people's faces light up when they walk in the door, is invalueable. To be able to give advice and suggestions - and have people come back and say they loved what I suggested -- is beyond exciting.

And they physical labor of it isn't so terrible either; it's like going to the gym without actually having the time to do so. Is the result the same? No, of couse not - but it sure beats sitting down all day.

I have job satisfaction now.
And I love that.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

And the stalkerazzi photos are in.....

Well, some of them anyway! (That's me with my hair up, not to be confused with the oh-so glamorous B in front of me! She's a rock star. I, am not... )

That's us with the cast after the show.
Definitely a great night!

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Baby cried the day they took the big top....down.

I am exhausted today.
Completely wiped out.

Partly because I had a really great but busy week; and partly because I was up way past my bedtime going out with my girlfriends last night. It was a much needed and long overdue time out, and when I tell you there were tons of laughs - it was really good medicine. (Note to self: How do you know when you're getting old? When coming home at 11:30 is "way past your bedtime" and you're "exhausted" the next morning.)

We went and saw a show called "Girls Night Out". It was sort of like an ongoing Saturday night skit but with everyone in the audience singing and dancing along to all girl anthems like "I Will Survive", "It's Raining Men"....and of course, my favorite -- the epitome of any thirty somethings childhood, singing in front of the mirror with a hairbrush to the classic Melissa Manchester song, "Don't Cry Out Loud". (Yes, I think I totally cracked my girlfriends up with that one...) Seriously, I think we all could audition for this show and do our own version of it - it just looked like a blast! Except of course -- they all can sing incredibly. I can't answer for anyone else but me, and truly - I don't think anyone wants to hear me sing anyplace outside of karaoke with the most minimal of expectations!

I've had this laryngitis thing going on for about 3 weeks now -- well, after last night, I really have no voice. (Of course in my head, I've got this totally hot Demi Moore thing going on so I'm embracing the raspiness. Though I'm sure it's really not quite that fabulous sounding.....)

Pictures will follow shortly....the stalkerazzi was there in full swing. (Code for lots of picture taking by the some of the girls -- even shots of us with the cast.)

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

It takes 32 muscles to frown, and 27 muscles to smile....

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort. ~Herm Albright, quoted in Reader's Digest, June 1995

Attitudes are contagious. Are yours worth catching? ~Dennis and Wendy Mannering

Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine. ~Anthony J. D'Angelo, The College Blue Book

If you don't get everything you want, think of the things you don't get that you don't want. ~Oscar Wilde

I had the blues because I had no shoes until upon the street, I met a man who had no feet. ~Ancient Persian Saying

If you don't think every day is a good day, just try missing one. ~Cavett Robert

Don't henpeck everyone all the time. Not everyone may be as good at what you do, but you may not be as good at what everyone else does either. Life is a balance and patience, tolerance and understanding are the keys to a successful life. -- Rebecca, I'm just a Girl

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

I hate to be a cat, but.....

(No offense to some of my favorite furry felines...)

Listen, I love my girl Mariah Carey. She's one of the most phenomenally talented singers of our era. And I know that she's not the brightest bulb in the box, or at least doesn't put any effort into trying to appear relatively intelligent (not judging, if that's who she is - cool beans.), and I also know that she doesn't really need to work at keeping a fabulous image because, well....she can sing like nobody's business, so the truth of the matter is - she can do whatever she wants because she is tried, true and the real deal in the music industry. A diva, with staying power and the pipes to back it up.


Did anyone happen to catch her on the Jay Leno show last night?

She looked terrible. I kind of always suspected she had her breasts enlarged but my God, she looked bigger than Pam Anderson at her biggest! And she was in this skin tight dress that looked like she was stuffed into it, and the word sausage - would be a compliment. Even more surprising -- I think she got her nose done! Which I would think as a singer, that would be a surgery one might opt not to do. Just sayin'...

Anyway, I wanted to rush through the television and give her a sweater and say "honey, you don't need to look like this.... you're amazing no matter what!" She just looks like she's oozing insecurity, on a physical level. Of course, I'm sure it's the total opposite and she's just enjoying herself - but it's not a good look.

It's just not workin' for you Mimi.