Wednesday, September 28, 2005

I Love Rachel Ray!!!

I really do. But first, let me explain. This weekend I decided to clean out my wallet (don’t ask, I’m compulsively neat) anyway, I found a gift card to Waldenbooks that I got for my birthday back in July, put into my wallet and promptly forgot about. Well we found a Waldenbooks at the Kanawha City Mall. The mall is actually a waste of a decent parking lot. They should tear it down and put up something more interesting, like a stamp museum. Anyway, I used the card to buy Rachel Ray’s Cooking Around the Clock. I am super excited to have all these new recipes! Sunday I made Jeff oatmeal cookie pancakes from the book and I am planning on the gingerbread waffles this weekend. Last night Jeff made the 30 minute Shepherds pie which was AWESOME!!!!! I really do love Rachael Ray, if it wasn’t for her I would only know how to make a few things, like mac and cheese and spaghettios. Hey those are yummy! I lived on those for years before I met Jeff. But now, thanks to Rachel I can let Jeff take a break once in awhile and I can make something. Of course I can’t cook when he is in the house because he stands over my shoulder and tells me what to add, edging me out until he is the one cooking and I’m watching TV. Mostly I’m okay with this situation, but sometimes I would like to make something. I know that my creations are not as good as what Jeff whips up, but hey at least I’m cooking! Jeff of course can look in the pantry and come up with a delicious recipe on the fly, I can not! At first I tried to do everything Rachel’s way, keeping it under 30, but then I learned that when I am unorganized and chopping and stirring at the same time I go crazy! So now I get all my ingredients ready before I start, do all the prep work, well some Jeff does because I am not allowed to use the really sharp knives, and have everything within reach. Then I can cook! I have also learned from my hubby to taste as I go along, which has helped me identify and use different spices. So I am very happy with my new book, and crabby girl has gone bye-bye. Jeff has a song that he sings that always makes her skedaddle! We are planning to check out a renaissance fair this weekend, so I will be back to let everyone know how that goes. And we were finally able to order the new computer! It is supposed to be shipped next week, so we will see what actually happens!!!

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Karma is a B****

And Jeff and I were really bad in our past lives. This is the only explanation that I have for the run of bad luck that we have had since last spring. I know I shouldn’t complain, but hey this is my blog and I can write whatever the heck I want! At first we thought that we were just having a bad summer, heck we have had runs of bad luck before…who hasn’t, but this string has gone on so long, I can only assume that we are working off something from a very long time ago. To begin the summer was the breakdown of my car, on the interstate, twice. And then Jeff’s car’s air conditioning and the rental cars that had to take me to work and us to WV to find a place to live. There was the MOVE FROM HELL!!!! From beginning to finish this move was cursed, ask Amy and Paul (to whom we are indebted, for a LONG time). But once I had arrived in WV and school started I though that we had turned a corner and life would be good…boy was I wrong. The cable guy has been here four times and we are on our second cable box. We have been harassed by our neighbor and I swear one of these days Spenser is going to slid right into the wall on these wood floors. Then there is the security deposit that is non-existent, my financial aid that was held up and had to be redone, fighting with Verizon over their mistake that they tried to charge us for (but whatever you do don’t bring it up to Jeff who had to spend over an hour on the phone with a woman who assured him that he just didn’t understand the bill….yeah he liked that one, she finally got a supervisor when he informed her that he was in fact a COLLEGE PROFESSOR and had some modicum of intelligence). Then there was my laptop power cord that just decided to stop working (the exposed wires might have had something to do with it), and the delayed shipping of said power cord. And then, just as we got my laptop up and working, Jeff’s desktop decided that it had had enough and bid the world a fond adieu. So now we have to purchase a new desktop, which is irritating enough but Dell had upped the $35 coupon up to $50 and so we thought we had better order it right away, but now Jeff can’t remember how he spelled his mother’s maiden name (please don’t make me spell it here) so he can not verify our Dell account and we can’t order anything until Monday when, hopefully we can get a hold of Dell and get the damn thing ordered!!!!!! But of course this means that the stuff for the house we have been waiting to get until we paid off the move will now have to wait because we have to buy a new computer. To some people two computers might be a luxury, but for us it is a necessity when we are both teaching and finishing dissertations. And it’s not like we need a lot, it was just some little things like barstools for the counter downstairs, a small second desk because Jeff’s didn’t make the move, an étagère for the small master bath to hold all of my crap and a few other small things. Of course the big thing that we have been saving for is a wireless cable thing for the living room where there is no cable outlet, I miss my living room.
So I know that all of this is not life or death, it’s not like I had to be evacuated from Hurricane Katrina and then evacuated from Rita type bad luck, but honestly I just wish we could catch a break, it just seems like we put out one fire and then there is another one with no break. Now I don’t want anybody to feel bad for me after reading this, it is just a vent, but commiserate because I know we have all been there, and if not shut up because the rest of us hate you! (just kidding, but really we will not like you). So I guess the best thing to do is work off some of this karma as best we can. And just in case anyone is worried that all this talk of karma means I’ve joined the moonies, here I am speaking metaphorically about the general balance of the universe. So now that I have depressed everyone, I will leave you with a joke. So did you hear FEMA just showed up in Chicago? Yeah they heard that a cow kicked over a lantern. HAHAHAHA thanks dad for that one. And thanks all for reading my vent!!!! I will let you all know how the new computer buying odyssey goes!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

"It's Alive!"

Well Dell came through and I now have a working laptop…YEAH! I am very happy that I do not have to share a computer with my husband anymore. I mean I love him and will gladly share my life with him, but a computer? That’s just asking for trouble. I’m just kidding, I am actually a good sharer and no one better correct me in the comments section! The docking station thing is actually very cool, but we are still sharing a desk because Jeff’s desk did not make the move and we haven’t gotten a small one for the other room yet. But we are doing the best we can. I still haven’t gotten pics of the house done yet, and I really have no excuse, I finished reading a Grisham novel today, which consumed pretty much all afternoon. I make no excuses for that because I HAD to find out what happened to the Broker if I were to sleep well tonight. But I thought I should blog anyway because I guess many people need my blog to keep from doing other stuff (like work, homework, grading paper ect). I greatly respect that sort of procrastination, so I must oblige.
I am very excited that tonight the season premiers of both Lost and Law and Order are on!!! I am trying to wait patiently for tonight, but this new time zone simply means I have to wait longer!!! I am super excited that Jesse Martin is back on L&O. I know that some people were worried when he left the show for a short time last year, but those in the know knew that he was simply taking time off to go shoot the movie version of Rent. Why you ask? Because of course he was in the original cast on Broadway as Tom Collins. I simply cannot wait until Nov. when the movie comes out! The plans are to have a reunion with the beloved Will and Jennie and see it together. Of course this was when I thought the movie was coming out Nov. 10th. But when I checked the movie site last night it said that it was coming out Nov. 23rd, which is the night before T-day, which may throw a wrench into the plans. I’m not sure, but until then I will walk around singing “525,600 minutes…..” because I am so excited! Just watching the trailer makes me want to cry….ooh I can’t wait, I just hope Rosario Dawson can play Mimi, I haven’t heard her sing yet and we all know the person who plays Mimi needs to have some pipes!
I am also slightly excited about the ER premier on Thurs, although Jeff is not. But I am a loyal girl, I committed to ER a decade ago, and I can not turn my back on it now, no matter how crappy it gets! Well, there is a line! When they killed off Lucy I stopped watching for awhile, but I always go back….this is probably not the best relationship!
I am also happily crocheting away with…NEW YARN!!! Sent to me of course MomP who is once again donating to a good cause! I will have pics of the new yarn in the next few days as well as pics of the house if I don’t get caught up in the new trashy book I have staring at me from the table!

Saturday, September 17, 2005

To quote Monica: "And nagging works!"

Well it does. As some of you may know I have been having problems with my laptop, well I should say laptop accessories, because you see the laptop itself works splendidly, but the power cord has bit the big one, so while my laptop will, theoretically, work, I have not seen this lately because I lack any way in which to bring electricity to the damn thing. The power cord itself has exposed wires, and I know what you are all thinking…please Jess, for the love of God do not even come close to touching those wires because you will electrocute yourself. All I have to say to those people is this: I am not the one who broke their ankle, am I? So anyway, I unplugged the thing before I actually tried to look at it; surprisingly there were little teeth marks on the cord, about the same size as cat teeth. We still have no idea how they got there, my theory is that a strange cat broke into the house, slyly got around Spenser as he was guarding the house from the couch, and chewed on the power cord to my laptop. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. So this happened about two weeks ago. And of course because my laptop is a Dell, I had to order the cord from Dell. They said it would take a week, and then two, by the time that Jeff got an email that it wouldn’t be shipped until next week I was livid. I called Dell where the customer service people were nice, but they couldn’t do anything, so I wrote a letter. It was nice, but all about business. Well after I threatened to go somewhere else to purchase my next computer I received an email back. They had put a high priority on my order, had updated it to next day shipping free of charge and gave me a $35 gift certificate. So see, sometimes you have to complain and sometimes that works! But don’t call me to complain because I have absolutely no power to do anything about anything, or maybe I don’t care, one or the other.

Other than that I have been cleaning and finishing putting together the house, all in an effort to avoid working on Chapter three, although on the up side Chaps 1 and 2 have been passed by my first reader! I was going to take pics, but because the laptop is down, and I don’t know how to download pics on Jeff’s computer, so you will all just have to wait on Dell. But I did turn a corner today on my study/guest room. I haven’t been feeling it, but today I did a little rearranging and it is starting to look good. And more importantly it is ready for all of you people to come visit, and soon, I need some Illinois people down here to visit! Okay I’m a bit homesick, but any excuse for visitors. The second guest room I haven’t even started, but if I have a warning that someone is coming and will have to sleep there I may….. it’s all up to you people!

I have not much to report on the knitting front. I got the sock yarn, and Jeff would really like some socks, but I am still crocheting blankets for the needy, so he will just have to wait. I was also almost finished with a sweater, but everything has had to take a backseat, and why not we won’t be able to wear wool socks and sweaters for awhile! Well that is it from WV today, I am going to post this quickly because I am afraid of losing internet again. I have called the cable company, and they will be here Wed. between 8 and 12. I am glad their customer service allows them to give me a specific time…. (hear the sarcasm she thinks because she doesn’t use emoticons)….Well love you all, and hope to have pics of the house up soon!

Monday, September 12, 2005

Blankets for Hurricane Victims

Okay before I get into the point of this post I have to point out that I recieved my first spam. Under the pic of Jeff and I on Bourbon street someone left a comment. Excited I opened it right away to find out that it was a an online dating service. Nomally this would elicit only the smallest irritation, but to have spam about a dating service in the comments of a pic of my husband and I is just too ironic. I guess once you're married, it is a good time to start dating online. Isen't one of the reasons people get married so that they don't have to date anymore? Oh well.

Enough peviews, now onto our main feature. Since I have really no dissernable talents besides teaching English, I decided that I would use my one semi-talent, fiber arts, to give to the needy. So I decided to start making baby blankets to send to the Red Cross for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. I saw a lot of babies out there, and I thought maybe I could help a little. But knitting baby blankets is very time consuming, so I decided to crochet them, which is going very fast! I have one completly done, and another almost done. When I mentioned this project to MomP (my mother-in-law for anyone who is not related reading this), she sent me a box full of yarn!! It was a great surprise and has made me very happy!!! I was going to have to buy some more baby yarn, but now I have a whole box, check it out in the photo below. MomP is an awesome mother-in-law. When I hear other people complaining about their MIL's I always snicker, not a very nice reaction to those poor women (and men) stuck with some steretypical harpie. I am very lucky, I have MomP. I think one of the reasons I love her so much is because she reminds me of my own mother, the woman who has always been the biggest inspiration in my life. Like my Mom, MomP has a huge heart, a great sense of humor, and a love for her family and mankind that is boundless. And most importantly, she has a daughter-in-law kitchen cabinet fully stocked with junk food. So thank you so much MomP for the awesome yarn, I am sure the people who get these blankets will love them as much as I love you (well I probably love you more...but who's keeping track?).
SO that is my part, trying to give something to those who have nothing. I know that all my friends and family are doing the same because they are all awesome people!!! Jeff is even getting into this and attempting to whip up a blanket with some of the blue cloud yarn, I promise pics soon! Well, that is all from West Virginia for now, I am back to baby blankets! I msut also insist that all my friends and family start making plans to come visit soon!!!

MomP's donated yarn!!!

Blanket 2 in progress. MomP I found the stitch!

Charity blanket one

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

My hubby and I on Bourbon Street Spt. 2004

New Orleans

The Big Easy. The Crescent City. A city so historical and lively that its myth is bigger than its history. It is a beautiful, old, vibrant, city full of good old fashioned hospitality and love. Last year my husband and I visited New Orleans for a conference and it wasn’t long before we ditched the frosty rooms of academia to explore the pulsating city. I won’t mention the food or the music here, it needs no more exaltation, they stand on their own, but I want to talk about the people of New Orleans, the friendly, loving and soulful people of the city who made us feel so welcomed there, who made us feel like we were part of the family called New Orleans. Everywhere we went the people of New Orleans extended their love. They gave us directions; they walked us to the hidden restaurants and clubs that only the natives know about. I fell in love with the city and the people who called New Orleans home. I searched for a job there, and lacking that, promised to return and, my dream, to retire there in Cajun country, surrounded by jazz and antebellum homes. Those plans have not changed in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Naysayers question whether New Orleans will ever be the city that it once was. I believe that it will. The Big Easy will rise again, bigger and better than ever, because you can’t keep a city with that kind of spirit down. In the last week I have wondered about the people that we met in New Orleans. The people on the street who stopped to give us directions and then tell us where the better place to eat/see was. The bellman who took our bags to our room, chatting the entire time about the city and how we would love it, giving us the inside scoop because we looked like “jazz people”. The tour guide who we stumbled upon, but enjoyed so much we went back two days in a row to take every tour he gave. The street performers who entertained us all afternoon in Jackson Square because their music was like being in heaven in front of St. Louis Cathedral. The hotel valets, who kept our car a few extra hours at no charge so we could see the Aquarium, ride the streetcar and chew on beignets at Café du Monde. The shuttle driver who took us there because it was neighborly and a hot day. I wonder where they are today. Did they get out before the storm and flood? Were they home when water rose to the roof? Were they stuck in the Convention Center, the Superdome or on I-10? Have they found their families in the chaos? Were they sent to Houston? Dallas? Baton Rougue? I hope and pray not only for the people that I came across there personally, but for all the people that made New Orleans what it was, and while I am angry at a variety of things that is not what this post is about. Right now I am writing about a city that I love, a people that were the epitome of southern friendliness. Later there will be time to blame and question. But for now I will dream of New Orleans rebuilt, a town revitalized by the spirit of history, the spirit of people who will make the city what it once was, I hope one day to be one of them.


Related Posts with Thumbnails