So, Yeah, This is August

So, the second half of the summer was not as exciting as the first, as far as events are concerned, but this happened:

At the beginning of August, Charlie took a nasty spill off of his bike and suffered a mild concussion, some lacerations, and maybe a bruised rib.  He didn’t need stitches, and it wasn’t a major concussion, thank Bob, but his helmet is annihilated, and proof that helmets are a good idea.

They let him leave the hospital in the gown, because the shirt he wore in there was covered in blood. I wanted to take him just like that to the mall to freak people out, but the party pooper said no….

So, I only got out on the bike once this year, but at least I got out. Next summer, I won’t be taking two summer classes, so I’ll have more time.

Earlier this month, the MomZ and the DadZ took the family (including Charlie) on Family Vacation to Western PA to go whitewater rafting on the Youghiogheny river in OhiopyleNational Park. Charlie had not been rafting before, so he had a great time. He and the MomZ want to do the Upper Yogh, which is a Class V. I, on the other hand, do not care for being wet or cold, so I think I’ll just dip my toes in next year.

Not only did I make Charlie prom pose with me, we made the MomZ and the DadZ prom pose, too.  I think I’ve decided that I am going to ruin every photo opportunity with Charlie and I by prom posing in it.

…And I would show you pictures, had the MomZ sent them to any of us. I went digging through her camera and her computer, and there nowhere to be found…as far as I know, they’re in the internet ether. Maybe someday I’ll show you….

Here’s what I will show you, though. A picture of me at Mattress Factory, a gallery of installations. I liked it: I think that it’s awesome that there are two entire buildings devoted to delightfully weird installation pieces. (And that, my friends, is bona fide art criticism: I was an art student!)

You will note that Charlie is specifically absent from this picture. That is because had he been in the picture, one of us would have been trying to put the other into a submission hold because only one of us knows how to drive stick shift and said person had to do so in stop-and-go I-376 traffic across a city which’s downtown highway planning was clearly mocked up by the city planner’s toddler in preschool art class. And said person tends to drive angry in Pittsburgh traffic, so, there would be no “loving couple” pictures that day.

The bag is the Ninja Octopus bag by retropopnamu on Etsy.

Also, since Charlie, Zero and I road-tripped to family vacation together, I did get this one picture of us in the hotel parking lot while eating roadside kettle corn and waiting for the MomZ and the DadZ to get to the hotel.

I clearly like the pink plaid button-down. That thing is comfy. Not incredibly flattering in photos, but comfy.

Gonna Start a Fight Tonight

For the first time in the 10 years that I have known him, Charlie got a haircut. Kind of a major haircut: he went from shoulder-length hair to a messy type of short hair cut.


He was very ready for the change, and I think it’s very becoming. I was looking through old pictures and was kind of missing the long hair, but the reality was that it was high time for him to have a more sophisticated style.

And, he’s really jazzed to use hair goo every morning.

Christmas, 2011

It’s been a nice Christmas, I must say. The only complaint I have about the weekend is that there was way too much charcoal into the censer at midnight mass. Through the whole service my eyes, nose, and sinuses burned. I spent most of Christmas day sneezing the rest of the soot out of my face.

As is tradition, I spend Christmas Eve with Charlie and his family, doing midnight mass at his high school alma mater and opening presents after, and Christmas Day with my family. Instead of dinner, though, my mother planned a big brunch with strata, bacon and sausage, orange and ginger scones, frothed orange juice mimosas (make them in the blender), and  yeast-risen pancakes with apple cider syrup. I thought that Christmas brunch was nice, but I ended up having to scavenge for dinner.

I’m very pleased and grateful for all of my gifts. It was a very foodie Christmas this year: Charlie’s mom and dad got me a chef’s coat with my name embroidered on it, my brother remembered that I mentioned that I thought having a Japanese-style cleaver so he got me one (it’s really, really sharp!), and my parents got me the Jeni’s Ice Cream cookbook. Charlie got me these Kraken Attackinprints, matted and framed, along with a watch case and and Om Nom plush. I also got some clothing, and gift cards, all of which will be totally useful.

I finished out the holiday season with my annual after-Christmas clearance grab, wherein I buy up all of the gift wrap and accouterments I can get my hot little hands on. I’m pretty well-stocked on wrapping paper and bows, but I did need boxes, ribbon and tissue paper. I was very efficient this year: I managed to get everything I needed for under $50. I’m in the neighborhood of 150 sheets of tissue paper, and 16 rolls of ribbon, and I also got some extra mini storage boxes to boot.

I’m so excited to start using my gifts, and so glad that I got to spend these holidays with my family and friends.

Friday Five for December 23, 2011 – More 2011 Review

Last year, Charlie and I went to the Holiday Lantern Tour hosted by Hale Farm & Village. Last year was nice, there was snow on the ground, and it continued falling through the tour, but it was bitter cold. This year, there wasn’t any snow on the ground and it was muddy as hell, but at least the cold wasn’t bitter. The premise of the tour is that you step out of 2011 and into Christmas Eve, 1861, and get to visit different places around the village on that night.
I’m a huge reenactment nerd, my favorite history-lesson era is the pre-Revolutionary War, I love most everything about Victorian times, but I also enjoy the Civil War era, so the Lantern Tour is right up my alley. It pretty much cemented me getting a reenactment costume (that I was going to get this year for Halloween, but didn’t pan out), which I will not only wear for Halloween, but probably also to 2012 Yankee Peddler.
Last year, as my memory token, I got a pressed-glass ornament, this year, I got a hand-blown drinking glass made on the farm that I will use at work. I’m thinking about also ordering a basket for my blankets in my bedroom, and maybe a ceramic pitcher that I can use as a vase for flowers.
Onwards, to the Friday5!
  1. In 2011, what did you do far too many times?
    Rationalized too many bad choices.
  2. In 2011, what did you rediscover?
    I both discovered and rediscovered Zentangle. Since finals week, I need to re-rediscover Zentangle. But now that I have a 5-day weekend, I think I’ll b able to do that.
  3. What 2011 event will you still be paying for in 2012?
    Closing out some debt. Nothing major, but it will still be there through January.
  4. In what unexpected place did you find a friend in 2011?
    The Internet, that great Small World in the ether.
  5. As 2011 comes to a close, what in your life is trending upward toward a much better 2012?
    I made an oath at Yule this year that I was going to pursue more me-positive things, truly believing that by doing so, the Universe would answer. I fully expect to hold up my end of the bargain.

Source: Friday5

Spent

Well, that semester is over….

I wish that I could say the radio silence was worth it, and that it all paid off in the end, but only about 25% of what I studied (which, for the record, was 50% of the book) was on my final exam tonight. I really curious to know where he came up with the topic for the exam, because I don’t remember reading about any of it – and I read every single chapter of that textbook, which in  my entire education tenure, I have never done.

So, now I wait until Monday to see what grade has been posted and what my academic fate will be. I’m actually very nervous.

Tomorrow marks the beginning of Annual Yule Weekend, wherein Charlie and I bundle ourselves down to Columbus to see Heather and David and all of our other Heather and David Friends to celebrate Christmas, friendship and make toasts and oaths for the new year.

I finally did it right this year and took both the Friday and the Monday off of that week. Friday so Charlie and I could have date night, and Monday, because, without fail, some abominable weather pattern moves in that weekend and I end up struggling to drive home in a blizzard. Knock on wood, let’s hope that I over-prepared this year and have not poked spiteful Mother Nature in the eye, challenging her to a duel.

But, really, two whole days off with no school obligations? I definitely can dig that release.