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Friday, June 29, 2007

4th Avenue Street Sale Extravaganza!

Today was the Second Annual 4th Avenue Street Sale. Bargain seekers started driving slowly by about 8am, but the neighbors did not really get their goods out until around 9am (the official starting time). By then, the place was swarming with people. We got rid of a lot of stuff, and the kids, in particular, sold about $50 worth of toys and books each. We were joined by our friends, the Vetters, who had a ton of new and used kids clothes and toys, and our friend, Kay, who brought along a lot of her husband, Scott's, fishing rods and tackle (he's a manufacturer's rep for fishing equipment). Their stuff was a fisherman's dream. Tell all your friends we'll be open again on Saturday until around 2pm!

As usual our earnings are burning a hole in our pocket - we'll blow the whole wad on a fish fry tonight!

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Pachysandra Pup

Jasper loves to leap through the pachysandra in our back yard. The grass stains on his coat is a very funny sight. He better change into his other fur outfit!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Unthinkable. Unfathomable. Unreal.

Those are just a few of the words the Fairport community is using in an attempt to comprehend the tragic accident that happened last night at 10pm when a car caring five senior girls, who had just graduated last Thursday, collided with a tractor-trailer, killing all five girls.

http://www.democratandchronicle.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070627/NEWS01/70627002

Fairport is a very close-knit community, and, I'm sure I speak for many, when I say our hearts are breaking for these girls and their families. Please keep them in your prayers.

One Week Reprieve?

Mark took Bailey to the vet this morning, and he offered the option of trying a liquid phenobarbital treatment for her seizures. So, we're going to try that for a week to see if it works. Other than that problem, she's been "fine," so, as Mark says, she used up one of her lives to buy herself at least another week. We'll keep our fingers crossed.

Farewell, Old Cat

Today we will be putting our beloved 18-year old cat, Bailey, to sleep. Being so old and in relatively good health until the last couple of weeks when she started having seizures, we really feel that having her until such an advanced age has been a gift. Always aloof, she was nonetheless a loving companion, and her loss will be felt most by Mark, whom she loved best and was entirely devoted.

There was a time, when we had our two cats, that I said we could never live without a cat (there was nothing more comforting than the "cat sandwich" at night, with Bailey asleep on one side of my legs, and Pru asleep on the other). But, with our sweet and loving puppy, I think we'll see how it goes for a while, and for the first time in 18-years, we won't be "cat people."

We'll miss you, old girl.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Jasper's First Bath

What a busy day yesterday! We were on the go all day - from bringing Jasper to visit the kid's teachers to visiting my work to going to the vet to having a bunch of friends visit. One of the highlights was having a little friend, Abby (a Cockapoo) visit. After a really heavy rainstorm, the pups ran around the yard, getting into the dirt and standing water. This picture is the result! Of course, that playtime resulted in Jasper's first bath.

Today I head up to Watertown (well, technically, LaFargeville, for my nephew Andrew's high school graduation). Congrats, Drew! You will certainly take the world by storm!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Someday...


...he'll be bigger than his bed.

Introducing Jasper!

Well, we made it home with our boy around 8:40pm last night (the picture at left is of us, Jasper and his sweet mom, Ruby). And we were all ready and rarin' to go! We came home to an impromptu neighborhood last-day-of-(elementary)school ice cream sundae party so everyone was out and about and very excited to meet their new neighbor.
He had a great ride home - just whimpered a couple of times, but otherwise slept and just looked around. The night was also uneventful and just as we expected (except he didn't cry or bark): he was up every two hours and "did his thing" outside (GOOD BOY!). Then, while Mark was with him this morning he also "did his thing" (plus something extra special) in the kitchen. Mark always seems to get stuck with that stuff! Of course, I had to promptly be called down from bed to help with the clean up.

He's had his breakfast and is now receiving the benefits of a extended belly rub session from his new sister. We're very happy about our new addition!! Thanks to Janis and Dave for letting us adopt their beloved "Lime Boy"!

Monday, June 18, 2007

New member of the family on Wednesday!

It's finally happening! We got a call yesterday (a great Father's Day present) that we'll be getting our new pup this week. His name will be Jasper (in honor of our great trip to the Canadian Rockies last year, and also in honor of my wonderful Aunt Jeannine who we visited there), and he's an 8-week old Golden (born April 21), who's coming from outside of Syracuse. We are so excited, and gearing up with all the equipment again. We'll probably go out and buy some new toys, but other than that I think we have everything we need for our new arrival. I'll post more (including pictures) after his homecoming on Wednesday evening!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Old Cat Dementia?

Our old cat, Bailey, just turned 18 around Memorial Day and, boy, is she losing it. All her life she has had the disposition of a timid barn cat (which makes sense because she was born a barn cat), and when she was not acting timid she was acting indifferent. But in the last few years, and especially in the last few months, she is acting like a different cat. Loving, affectionate and attentive to all...I can only guess that she forgot that she doesn't really care that much about us. She has outlived two pets who joined the family after she did, and you get the sense she feels triumphant about getting rid of the pesky competition.

Bailey has always been Mark's cat (he claims it's because they bonded during her first night with us when he slept on the kitchen floor with her), but there's more to it than that when it comes to his special relationship with Bailey. Somehow Mark seems to win over all the family pets, and the rest of us get really annoyed by that and refer to him as a "pet-hog"...but I digress...

So, for some reason Bailey is enjoying an unusual closeness with all the members of the family during this, her twilight years (or months?). We will sure miss her when she's gone, but we are so enjoying the fact that she's actually paying attention to us for a change.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Hallelujah! The Last Day of School

At long last (for the kids, not us), the last day of school! We sure are a long way from that first day of school in September (see picture at left), and it's been a great year. We don't have much planned this summer, mostly concentrating our efforts on getting a dog. I'm planning my vacation time around that, and I'm hoping it will work out.

We keep having near misses for puppies, but we decided we would also want a male dog, which gives us a little more flexibility when getting on breeders lists. I spoke with two breeders today (near Buffalo) who will be confirming pregnancies next week, so if their dogs are expecting the puppies will be born in mid-to-late July, which would put us in puppyland by mid-to-late September. Not ideal timing, but at least there will be a lot of nice weather left.

For now, though, we all are heaving a sigh of relief as the kids look forward to long summer days and, most especially (for Annalisse mostly), staying up later and sleeping in!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Go South, Young Man

Congrats to my nephew, Anthony, who recently graduated from SUNYIT in Utica (actually, he technically will graduate in August when he finishes his last on-line class), and moved to Raleigh, North Carolina. This is a kid who decided, after College, that the WORLD WAS HIS, and with the help of my sister, Mary, and her husband, Larry, on June 1 headed off to a new life in the Big City (A trip that was not without tears for his parents.)...a 21-year-old kid who did not know anyone, did not have a job, and arranged for a place to live, sight unseen, via the Internet before he left town. All he had was some money saved and an itch to get going with his life.

So brave! I'm not sure I would have had the courage to take such a step without some kind of safety net at my destination. His second week there he landed a great job, which he will start next Monday. A lot of people criticize modern technology, but without it we would not be able to check in with him through IM a couple of times a day, or reach him quickly on his cell phone (included in anytime/anywhere minutes) if we need to.

So, hats off to you, Anthony (TONY), for knowing you want and going for it! Ah, to be 21 again!

Monday, June 11, 2007

The Second Greatest Invention Ever

After the iPod, the second greatest invention ever is the Tide-to-Go instant stain remover stick. Just ask the green dress I'm wearing that had raspberry jam on it this morning. GONE!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

The Early Bird

The great thing about sleeping with the window open in the summer: hearing the cardinals, robins, crows and woodpecker squawking, chirping and pecking in the backyard tree in the early morning.

The annoying thing about sleeping with the window open in the summer: hearing the cardinals, robins, crows and woodpecker squawking, chirping and pecking in the backyard tree in the early morning.

Hence, the time of the this post.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Stay-Put Weekend

I have a revolutionary idea for great community building activity and a way to slow down during our way-too-busy lives: the Stay-Put Weekend. The stay-put weekend would start Friday after work (which for me is noon), and last until Monday when we leave for work. We would plan the weekend in such a way that we did not need to drive anywhere for those days.

This idea is a little bit scary since the weekend is the time when we do our shopping/catch-up/errands that we can't do during the week. Not to mention that on weekends we often visit friends and relatives. It would be a little easier for those who live in a small town or village setting and have access to great services and restaurants within a two-mile walking distance (in Fairport, most are within blocks), but even for us a stay-put weekend would take a little planning.

But still, if you want to stay-put in Fairport, it's easy!

  • Need fruits, vegtables or baked goods? Visit the Fairport Farmer's Market on Saturday morning
  • Need a food staple (bread, milk, eggs)? Just pick it up at Skip's Meat Market or one of the nearby convenience stores
  • Want to eat out? Try one of the many great Village Restaurants such as McArdles (Irish/American pub), The Landing (awesome Friday fish fry), Donnelly's (another great pub-restaurant), The Canalside Grill (just opened, right on the canal, great hamburgers and hot dogs), Whatcha Got Cookin' (unusual offerings and you can eat outside on a deck overlooking the canal), or Joey B's (a little more upscale, and very good). Very soon we'll also have a new Irish Pub and a Mexican Restaurant in the Village.
  • Need FUN? What could be more fun than a trip down the Erie Canal on the Colonial Belle, or hanging at Fairport Village Coffee and Wine Bar listening to live music every weekend?
  • Last, but certainly not least, need ice cream? There is nothing like Lickety Splits on the Canal, but we are mostly hooked on the The Royal Cafe's homemade gelato (we go just about every night...).
The only thing I haven't accounted for is driving to see friends and relatives. During the stay-put weekend it looks like they'll have to visit us! The worst thing that could happen is a backyard bar-b-que. For Annalisse and Cameron it would not be a problem because a lot of their friends live within walking/biking distance. Especially Annalisse, who, with her two best friends Kim and Amber, seem to bounce between our three houses ALL weekend, EVERY weekend, which is a great thing.

The stay-put weekend would probably not work for families with a lot of athletic commitments since they really seem to be on the go all over Rochester, New York State, and beyond, just about every weekend. But because we are weekend nap-takers from way back, we never got too involved in that!

The biggest benefit of the stay-put weekend: the cost savings in gas. Just imagine how much money we would save (at $3.10+ a gallon) if everyone just stayed-put for a weekend....that being said...I need to head to Wegmans for my BIG weekly shopping. Oh well, maybe next weekend can be our stay-put weekend.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

The Week of Eating Out

It occurred to me today that we're a little over a month away from THE WEEK OF EATING OUT - a glorious quasi-vacation week when the kids are at 4-H Camp Bristol. That week, we go to work merely as a means of killing time until we can out to eat that night. For five nights we visit restaurants "on the list" that we've compiled since last year's week of eating - new places we really want to try, and old favorites that the kids hate. On this year's list so far:
  • Le Lemon Grass - an old "Week of Eating Out" favorite. A Vietnamese restaurant on Monroe Avenue where the flavor literally explodes in your mouth. We always get the stir fried tofu and, of course, for dessert, bananas with chocolate and coconut wrapped in won-ton and deep fried (and topped with chocolate and whipped cream). Awesome!
  • Ariana Kabobhouse - A new Afghan restaurant for us to try. http://arianakabobhouse.com/
  • Delmonico's Steak House - Also new to us. I think it's related to the Delmonico's in Utica, which is very good. We'll go with our friends Scott and Kay. http://www.delmonicositaliansteakhouse.com/
  • The India House - An Indian favorite of ours. I can never get enough of that stuff. http://www.indiahouse.com/

We're still compiling the list, but this is what we've got so far. Any suggestions?

Monday, June 4, 2007

If I were in charge of the world - by Annalisse

If I were in charge of the world I’d cancel school, taxes, cars, video games, and trains. If I were in charge of the world there would be more ice cream, your own personal bubble, everybody’s house would have a built in pool!

Also love everywhere, kids would have to be forced to be outside for an hour (in the summer). If I were in charge of the world I wouldn’t have bullying, violence, a president, laws, school.

If I were in charge of the world I would let everyone be happy, kids would have more sleepovers, people could sleep in everyday, we could have anything to eat! You can buy anything you want!

(This was an assignment for English class.)

Saturday, June 2, 2007

8th Grade Finale

Last night I volunteered at Cameron's 8th Grade Finale. How things change! How they stay the same. It was a great party with a DJ, snacks (SNOW CONES), a teacher-dunking booth, and a velcro wall (definitely not around when I was in 8th grade). My job was to hang out in the "cafetorium," where the DJ was, making sure the kids didn't "get too close." Luckily none of them did, since, at 5ft tall, most of them tower over me and I'd be the one who had to tell them to knock it off. They'd probably step on me...

Being in the dance area was interesting. I'm wasn't sure at the beginning of the evening how I would be able to last 2 1/2 hours listening to the techno stuff and rap-crap (as we call it at our house), but watching the kids interact with each other made the time go by quickly. The subtle joining and re-joining of groups...the boys watching the girls...the girls watching the boys. Maybe not so much has changed when I was in 8th grade after all.

Cameron reminded me there is only 10 days left until the end of school. One day soon he'll remind me that there are only 10 days left until he goes to college. I'm sure I echo many parents sentiments when I say, WHERE DID THE TIME GO?