Thursday, December 29, 2011

Holiday Snaps

 Well Christmas came and went quickly and it was such a great time as always! We did Christmas eve at Dad's and Mary made the best turkey I've had in awhile. We brought Drew home with us to meet the new cats and sleepover. Of course the guys stayed up late playing video games, talking about music and <presumably> farting. Guys stuff you know. I'm glad I went to bed at a decent hour (although I did stay up late enough to say Merry Christmas!). On Christmas day we went to Big Reed and Laura's house and it was lovely as always. Aunt Lynn and Crissy were there which is always fun. For some reason the combination of Aunt Lynn and Trevor is always especially entertaining. Getting everyone together means we have to play Catchphrase.. one of my favorites.

 Big Reed receives Risk - the Onyx Edition

  Harvie decides the little bone isn't big enough for him & steals Toby's bone when he's not looking..

 Showing off their Christmas Crackers and Crowns

  Tigger claims the cat-nip stocking by sitting on top of it

 Our holiday collage, including Harvie as a reindeer (like in the Grinch)

Happy <almost> 2012!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Festive Weekends

Last weekend we got to see the Cleveland Orchestra at Severance Hall (a family tradition). I think we came up with a new tradition, Trevor singing opera in front of thousands of theater patrons.

Every year, the conductor invites audience members (usually kids) to chime in with the choir singing "The 12 Days of Christmas". They get to sing the "5 Gold Rings" part. Trevor decided this was his year to go forward.

The kid in front of him was good too - he said "5 Gold Eggs" instead of Rings.

If the video doesn't work, you can watch it via youtube by clicking here.

We had great seats and the Orchestra played beautifully as always. After that we went to Sergio's Sarava in Shaker Square. I got the best apple & brie salad with some rice & beans on the side.

On Sunday Mary and I went to JoAnn's to look at sewing machines and had to make a few other stops as well. Pier One is a must this time of year.. even just to get decorating ideas. While we were out and about Dad and RJ took the urban boys to Laser Quest - RJ aka "Maverick" got the highest score. We met for dinner at Jerzees, a local place with great wings, pizzas and sandwiches.. we really ate well that weekend!

We miss Georgia and all of our family there (especially this time of year when it gets cold and snowy) but this is a big part of the reason we moved home. We love being close to our parents and sisters. I just wish Drew and Lindsay were closer.

I will say, every winter I start thinking about Florida (or California would work too). I think the solution is that we "need" a winter home. 

On that note, I'm buying some lottery tickets.

Monday, December 12, 2011


The other night we were making dinner when we heard a little cry at the back door. I flipped on the light and there was a little orange kitten - crying at the door to be let in! We opened the door and the first few times he backed away then finally let RJ pet him and came inside. We gave him some food and he loved being held. 

We put a 'found cat' ad up on Craigslist and asked around the neighbors. So far no one has claimed him (we think it's a him). We're going to make a sign to put up. He's the nicest little thing.. but if he wandered away from a good home I'm sure they're worried about him.

He's definitely still a kitten but is probably a few months old.

There is a small chance he is one of the strays that live in the neighbor's shed.

About a month or so ago we saw this little kitten in the backyard with his mom (one of the strays we couldn't catch). His mom ran away and we scooped it up for a few minutes. I was afraid his mom wouldn't take care of him anymore after she smelled us.. but we still saw them traipsing around the backyard.

We haven't seen them for a few weeks, so it's possible this is that same kitten and he got brave enough to come to the door. I just don't think there's any way a feral kitten could turn out to be this nice. When we picked that one up a while back, he even hissed at first. 

He loves the dog and keeps rubbing up on him.. he actually likes it when Harvie licks him (other cats like the dog but hate to be licked.. except Dad's cat Tigger, he doesn't mind it). 

This video shows how much he likes the dog and what a sweet cat he is..

We've been calling him Stevie because we figure it's gender neutral (think Stevie Ray Vaugn or Stevie Nicks).
We'll see if anybody claims him! In the mean time, he has made himself right at home. Craze doesn't mind him too much but Tina is not happy. Must be a girl thing.

Home Alone

RJ was gone quite a few days last week at his annual sales conference in Baltimore. Thank goodness it's only one week out of the year and usually he's only gone one or two nights a week when he travels. The week before he didn't have to travel at all which was great.

The week actually flew by because I was working so much. I started working in the administration office for the non-profit program I work with. (The organization that facilitates the art programs at the shelters I've been doing for a few years). Remember in the spring of 2009 when I got the side job teaching? I said I wouldn't do that again because it was too stressful trying to get KidzArt done at home and working 15-20 hours on the side (and having some semblance of a family life). That stuck for a good year and half and now I've gone and done it again. This week I worked almost 20 hours in the RISE office. It was good timing because I could get my KidzArt work done at home without feeling like I'd rather be spending time with RJ. 

I actually cooked for myself twice while he was gone if you can believe that. I made a big pot of rice on Monday and made rice & beans that night and Chinese stir-fry the next night with the leftover rice. I needed leftovers to take with me to the office so it worked out well. One of the days I made a grilled turkey sandwich.. does that also count as cooking?

While I was at the office one day, I came home to Christmas decorations the neighbors put up. (This picture was taken the next day.. it was dark by the time I got home!)

Isn't that nice? I put up our 'Let it Snow' sign on our front door.. as long as we have a white Christmas I'll be happy. Then it can go back to not snowing..

We've decorated the inside of the house but don't have a tree yet. We want to get a small, live one that has roots so we can plant it with the other baby trees out back.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Already December...

We had a busy but great last few days!

Here are some of the highlights..

*RJ didn't have to travel this week, a welcomed change!

*I got some cool boots (pictured above) with the Kohl's cash we got from Christmas shopping
(Merry Christmas to me!)

*On Friday we did some more Christmas shopping and had a little "date-night at the drive-in" - Swenson's of course. They have the best chicken fingers.

*On Saturday I got to chaperone a trip to a local children's theater to see an adorable Christmas play.

*Later on Saturday evening I went to a fashion-y event to support a local Akron boutique I really like.

*On Sunday we went into Hudson where the guys watched the Brown's game (yikes) and us ladies decorated the Christmas tree. Laura and I also did some shopping in the downtown area which is so pretty this time of year. 

I still can't believe it's already December though.. it will be Christmas before we know it.
Glad we got a head start on shopping!