Sunday, July 31, 2016


Today tops off what has been an alternately exciting, frustrating, and stressful week. Rarely have I had a week where every day brought new stressful, frustrating, expensive experiences. Here goes...

As you know, this was the week we moved Cam down to Maryland to start his new job. So, on Monday I went to work, knowing that Tuesday I would have to take Annalisse to Syracuse to move her belongings out of her current apartment and into her new apartment, as she had to vacate by July 31 (a development I learned about only the Friday before). STRESSOR #1. As a result, we headed out to Syracuse with the intention of simply moving her stuff from her old apartment to her new, but NO: It turns out we had to completely empty out her current apartment and move everything home since she could not get into her new apartment until after August 20 (STRESSOR #2).

Now, all of you know I'm a good planner. I had emailed the rental office earlier in the month asking about this process, but never received an answer. It would have been okay to move everything home had I know that was the process. As a result, I did not have the proper car and was able to only take a limited load back to Rochester. In a panic I called Mom S. to ask if she would be able to come back to Syracuse the next day (when we were scheduled to leave for MD) to take "the rest." She was a lifesaver, and she and Annalisse were able to bring everything back ~ and it's all now in my front hall (STRESSOR #3).

Moving on to our trip to Maryland: the trip down was fine, and we had a nice night in Rockville Town Center, and a delicious Tapas dinner. We got up on Thursday morning and headed over to Cam's apartment to get him moved in. It was suuuuuppppeeeerrr hot and muggy out. We got all his stuff in, EXCEPT the bed he bought at IKEA last August (which was falling apart little by little). Mark and Cam could not get it into the elevator, so they started to carry it up seven flights - they made it up one flight and that was enough. Into the dumpster it went! Now Cam does not have a bed, just mattress to sleep on, and we'll have to figure that one out (A LESSER STRESSOR - #4). On the plus side: Cam's apartment is really nice and quite big for a studio. It's pretty bare but I'm sure it will fill up quickly.

The plan for the afternoon was to take the car in for a MD inspection at 2pm. The inspection lasted almost two hours and cost $93, and at the end the car did not pass because of a bent rim. The cost to fix it: $730. Ummmm, no. (STRESSOR #5.) A salesman Mark had been chatting with overheard our situation, and got right on the phone to a salvage yard where he was able to find a new rim for $200. That's more like it, although we also were not expecting to pay $200 for a car repair. So, in the pouring rain we drove over to the salvage yard and handed over $200 in cash. The rim would be in early the next day, after which we would need to take it to tire service to be installed (STRESSOR #6). Tensions were high that day as we got continually soaking wet going from place to place in torrential rain (STRESSOR #7), not to mention the hellish traffic (STRESSOR #8).

After the tire debacle, we headed to IKEA to pick up some supplies for Cam's apartment, then had a very nice dinner at a pub in Gaithersburg. That was a bright spot for the day.

On Friday, we got a call around 9:30am that the rim was ready for pickup. Mark went to take care of that while Cam and headed to Target to get more apartment supplies. Poor Mark: he picked up the rim then had to wait for almost 2 hours to get it mounted, after which he went BACK to the Honda dealership to get the tire cleared for inspection. He sat there another hour and was not able to get the car in (STRESSOR #9), then had to leave to pick us up for Cam's appointment at the NIH to get his badge picture taken (a bright spot of the trip: the NIH is huge and very cool - like a college campus).

After the NIH, we went back to the Honda dealer, waited another hour-and-a-half for them to update the inspection, then RACED to the motor vehicle department at 4pm only to be told we could not transfer the car because Cam did not have a Maryland license (STRESSOR #10). Two days wasted running around and we could not accomplish one of our major goals.

Now, Cam has to get a license, and we discovered that he needs his Social Security Card for the process. I got home yesterday afternoon and the card is no where to be found (STRESSOR #11), so he has to go in person for a new one...and the office closes at 4pm each day (STRESSOR #12), which will be difficult since he is just starting his job and will not get out until 5pm. Maybe on his lunch hour? Who knows at this point.

And for those of you keeping track at home, because the car is still registered to me and not yet turned over to Cam, I cannot get another car yet, and will have to wait until all of this is resolved (STRESSOR #13). It should be interesting as Mark and I juggle car pooling for the foreseeable future. Looks like I'll be renting a car for our trip to North Carolina in two weeks.

I am really ready to hand all of this over to the Universe. I'm so incredible frustrated and cranky, and looking forward to a new day tomorrow, and to bid this crappy week adieu.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Time Flies!

Chillaxin' at the pool
Can it be that it has been almost 3 weeks since I updated the blog?! SHAMEFUL!

But a super busy three weeks it has been. This summer is really flying by (sadness), but there is still so much to look forward to, like our trip down to Maryland as Cam starts his new job in Rockville.

We will head out on Wednesday, bright and early, with our trailer containing all Cam's Earthly belongings ~ well, maybe not everything, but what he will need to get started in his new place. He is renting a "super studio" in Gaithersburg, at least for the first year, since the info on Craig's list about sharing a house seemed kind of sketchy. His new apartment features a "sleeping area," with no door, but it will fit his full-sized bed he bought at Ikea last year. We also got him a full-size futon so we will be able to stay with him when we visit. The apartment complex looks really nice, so I hope it works for him.

On Thursday, we will work to get him all settled in his apartment, then we need to take his car to be inspected at 2pm, which we will need for his Maryland inspection. After that we will most likely go out and get some home goods he will need, like kitchen stuff, bathroom stuff, a toaster oven, a microwave and possibly a small cafe table depending on how much space he has.Then, Friday we will try to get to the DMV very early to get his car settled. On Saturday, we will head home.

To celebrate his last days of freedom from real work, Cam and his buddies went to Cape Cod for the weekend. As of this writing (3:30 in the afternoon), they haven't left for home yet. He does like to make his mother worry, doesn't he?

It hasn't really sunk in that he is moving away for good (fingers crossed everything works out and he likes his job!). Luckily, it's not really that far away (around 7 hours), and Annalisse and I will be stopping by in mid-August on our way to visit Sue and Ken in Roanoke then to Raleigh/Durham for an overnight to speak with internship coordinators for possible internships next year.

Annalisse has finished her volunteering at RGH, and she also finished her online Anatomy and Physiology class a couple of weeks ahead of schedule. She's sitting at about an A- right now, which she'll take!

Oh! Another thing: after like seven long years, I made it back to Vermont this week. MY GOD I MISSED AND LOVE VERMONT. I had to go to Killington for mini-conference for work - which was "meh" - but the meeting was held at the Killington Grand Resort Hotel, which had absolutely gorgeous views and was a very nice hotel. The trip reaffirmed my love of Vermont - if only it was not so cold there in the winter. This time I discovered another amazing little classic Vermont town: Woodstock. I will be heading back to Vermont, this time to Stowe, for our girl's weekend in October. I CANNOT wait.

Other than that, we've been enduring the daily heat which has led to a bit of a drought in our area and beyond, which I am absolutely NOT COMPLAINING ABOUT.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Summer Daze

I know the lawns are getting brown. I know it's sometimes hard to sleep at night with all this heat. BUT I LOVE IT! This weekend has been a banner one, with beautiful weather and time spent with good friends. It simply doesn't get any better.

The weekend started with a quick trip to Massena for my 35th reunion. I just went only for the Friday night get together, as Mark and I needed to attend our dear friend Kay's dad's memorial celebration on Saturday. Mark could not come along as he can't get away from work (having just taken two weeks vacation), so I started the day in Massena with lunch with my sisters and cousins, followed by a listing of Mom's house with a new agent and a party for Aunt Carol's 96th birthday.

Later in the day I joined my girl's (and Ken, Sue's husband) for dinner at Sabad's before heading to the reunion get together at the Massena Country Club. As always, it was great reconnecting with friends (and ignoring those who I never really liked - there! I said it!), and I noticed it tends to be the same people who go to these reunions, and those who NEVER go. Still, it was a fun time.

Then, Saturday I left my sister Carol's house around 6:30am to make it back to Dale's celebration (held at a beautiful location on Lake Ontario) by 11:30am. After that, I came home and took a nap (yes!), before we had a little bonfire get together with friends.

On Sunday we woke up and had a nice family breakfast before Mark, Annalisse and I headed out to look at cars, and Cam headed to Watkins Glen for a day trip with buddies. I am trying to decide what car I will get once Cam takes the Honda Accord, and I think it's down to three models. This week I'm going to try to get some test drives in so I can know what direction I want to take when we get back from Maryland in August.

Sunday night the kids had a bonfire with camp friends, and some of Cam's RIT roommates came over also. While the kids were enjoying themselves, Mark and I joined neighbors at their fire pit. What a wonderful night, and weekend. Just so much fun spending time with friends on beautiful summer nights. Priceless!

This week will find us back in the routine of Annalisse volunteering and working on her online class, Cam looking for a place to live, and Mark and I working (booooo!). For the upcoming weekend I will be hitting the road again as I run back up north for a baby shower and spend the night at Mary's Saturday night. Sooooo busy, but such a full life!