Friday, July 24, 2015

Kids and Careers

This summer, both kids have been making great strides in preparation for their respective careers.

Cam and his pals
Cam has been involved in Bioinformatics research at RIT for 40 hours a week (paid, thankfully), and comes home really excited about his progress and victories related to the project he is working on. Of course, when he explains what he's doing I have no idea what he's taking about. Oh well. Don't you hate it when they get smarter than us? Anyway, he's also involved in beginning his Master's thesis, the proposal of which he will defend in early fall. But it hasn't been all work for him, he's been having fun spending time with his Bioinformatics friends this summer and has developed a real bond with them. It's very nice to see.

The RD Intern
Then, in addition to her Bio class (in which she got a "B"), Annalisse has been working as a volunteer nutrition intern at Trillium Health.  For her program, she needs 250 volunteer hours by the time she earns her degree, so between volunteering at school and summers she needs to piece that together. At Trillium, she's working Tuesdays, Wednesday and Thursdays between 8:30 and 2 or 3pm, and is doing very meaty stuff. She's sitting in on counseling sessions, assisting with nutrition classes, working one-on-one with clients for meal planning, and working in their food shelf program. We couldn't have asked for a better first exposure to the profession, and she's really liking it. It's been a really "hands on" volunteer experience, and I think it will go a long way toward positioning herself when it comes to securring required internship at the end of her program.

A summer well spent!

Thursday, July 23, 2015


I'm off for a week! I'm on vacation! Siesta! 

I don't have very much planned for the next week that I'm off ~ Cam is working. Mark is working. Annalisse is at her internship for three days. IT'S OKAY! The porch and my books are calling me, not to mention wonderful pup time. This weekend kicks off with Mark's 35th Pittsford-Mendon High School reunion at Cobblestone Creek (what to wear? what to wear?), and on Monday I'm going to have some "girl time" when Nic, Annalisse, Mary and I head down to Canandaigua for some old house tours at the Granger Homestead (haunted!) and Sonnenberg Gardens (probably also haunted!), along with a nice lunch at Simply Crepes. Annalisse has her road test on Wednesday afternoon (it's about time), and other than that the week is wide open for me. What a great feeling!

It's been such a crazy summer so far. There was a time when work seemed to have quiet/downtime where I could focus on projects and really explore new initiatives, but this summer has been a real grind. I did bring my laptop home, so I think I will try to get a few things done since I won't have any interruptions, but there's a difference between doing work at home with your pjs and fluffy socks on, and being at still sort of seems like vacation.

So if you try to find me...look on the porch!

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Pull those weeds!

Another summer weekend has flown by...slow down! And how do we wrap up a warm, beautiful weekend? With a turkey dinner, of course...courtesy of my sister, Carol, who is visiting. I'll take it! Turkey in July!

Mark and I spent most of the weekend pulling weeds and doing some yard clean-up. I'm very disappointed in my herb garden this year, and actually with a lot of my plants. I planted really sweet yellow, orange and gold pansies at the end of May to brighten up the garden, and they mostly pooped out. So, do I rake them out and plant new? Well, yes and no. I turned the dirt over to get a lot of the weeds out, and took out most of the pansies, but left a few. Planting all those little plants is not my idea of fun, so I will need to decide  if I want to plant new annuals (like a hearty begonia) this late in the season.

Adding to my floral disappointment this year, I decided to get red geranium hanging pots for the front porch, remembering a couple of years back how beautiful and ever-blooming a geranium plant my aunt gave to me was. Another bust. They also are not doing well and I will probably not spend $100 to get all new pots. Oh well, lessons learned. Next year I will stick with what I know works.

On the bright side, though, Mark did a lot of weeding on the garden path, and I spent time pulling weed after weed out of the patio, so the lawn areas are looking very nice right now. I still take great pleasure in the polities of the bird community, as they squabble and squawk, waiting for their turn to visit the feeder. Yesterday between going to the market, the yard work, and a couple of walks with pup I got to 25,000 steps. Yay!

Onto another week, then a whole week of "staycation" which will find Annalisse and I just doing stuff around Rochester, and I will probably even get in a nap or two. I am woefully behind on my summer reading, instead binge watching great TV on Netflix. Discipline! ~ that I am sorely lacking these days!

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Holiday Weekend Recap

It's only a little bit ironic that I used this photo since
I am not a big fan of fireworks
It's the Sunday wind-down-holiday-weekend recap. What a wonderful weather weekend, and a weekend filled with low-key fun. Just in case you forgot:


Ahhh, it's so wonderful. It's still my goal to get a job with summers off. Two more years...when Annalisse is done with college...I'm hoping I can make some changes and figure out a way to not work in the summer months. We'll keep noodling on that one.

Anyway, back to the weekend. 

On Friday morning, Mark and I got up early and headed back up north to do some more cleaning and packing in my Mom's house. This time, we attacked the basement (damp, yuck) and threw tons of stuff out, and packed up other stuff. We were not able to bring as much back to Rochester as we had hoped, with the plan being to bring the boxes and boxes of housewares and tchotchke back to be donated to the annual Advent House sale (Morey gladly takes it off our hands and delivers it to the donation center). We got into town around 11am, had lunch, then got to work. We finished up around 3:30, then went up to wish Aunt Carol Chase a happy 95th birthday (her big day was Thursday, July 2). Then it was on the road again.We made a stop at Mary's on the way home and had a delicious dinner before heading back out at 8 and getting home at 10:45pm. A long day, but a productive day. Where we stand now: Carol and her boyfriend, Paul, are supposed be coming to Rochester next weekend and bringing the rest of the boxes for donation. If that goes as planned, the house should be pretty much empty (and in need of a good cleaning), and Mary is scheduled to meet with a potential realtor mid-month. 

On Saturday morning I got up at 6am and headed to Wegmans to get lunch supplies for a cookout after the Fairport parade. Cam ran the Firecracker 5k at 8am, then we watched the parade (too many politicians!). After the parade Nic, Patrick, Mike, Maggie and the boys came over for hots, hambs, and other great food. All the Bakers were down for the count and took naps in the afternoon. I had to wake everyone up at 6pm. That's the sign of a successful day...a great nap! 

This morning I got up early again and had my bagel at a leisurely Sunday morning pace (LOVED IT). Then, the furriest member of the family really needed a bath (to his dismay), and, of course, it took him all day to dry out but he smells much, much better now. We went to visit our neighbor, Ann, at the Highlands nursing home, then it was over to Trader Joe's to pick up some items and a haircut for Mark. Afterwards, NAPTIME!

We had dinner at home then took a walk to Moonlight for ice cream, getting ready to face another busy week. Annalisse just has two weeks left to her summer class, so that bit of running around will be done soon. July is shaping up to be very busy, with weekdays and weekends filling up. One thought has been going through my mind for the last month of so: I'd like to be a little less busy...summer is going by so fast, I'm trying to savor every minute!