Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I'll Try and Be Nice...

...seeing as how certain members of my family are a part of the medical profession.

But I'm pissed.

I had a doctor's appointment this afternoon. I called half an hour before my time slot to see if the doctor was running behind. Three no-shows and the person before me hadn't even shown up yet. Come on in!

So I immediately left work and drove the 5 minutes to the office. I stood in line behind some clueless chick, got my paperwork, paid my co-pay and sat down to wait.

And wait.

I sat there waiting for 20 minutes, 15 minutes PAST my appointment time.

I finally got called back, blood pressure, etc. Was told to strip, the doctor would be in in a few minutes.

5 minutes.

10 minutes.

Freaking 25 minutes.

At half an hour I was so pissed I put my clothes back on and went to find someone. I found the nurse and doctor in their lab area. Asked whether they had forgotten about me. Was told she'd be right there.

I went back to my room and sat down. Didn't undress. She can wait for me for once.

The doctor comes in. Apologizes. I tell her the next time someone tells me she'll be right in, I'll wait half an hour and then undress. Apparently the person before me (who showed up 15 minutes late) was a new patient and took a while.

She flew through the exam wham, bam, thank-you m'am style. A swab, a poke, and I was out of there. But I'm still pissed.

If they knew the person in front of me was new, why couldn't she have done my quick and easy before the long, drawn-out (CLUELESS CHICK WHO WAS FREAKIN' LATE) one? I just don't understand it.

*Deep breath*

Monday, February 23, 2009

Lamps and Oscars

We went to Home Depot yesterday morning to get a lamp and some other household wares. We found an unoffensive clear lamp on clearance for $16. Score. We also got a lamp dimmer switch so we can turn it off from bed. Yes. We’re lazy.

Adam dropped me back off at home and went to work. I did some cleaning, laundry, and then settled in on the couch for the NCIS marathon. Adam was originally supposed to be home early afternoon, but he ended up coming home around 6. He brought dinner with him though, so it was ok. We ate, watched the race for a little while, and then he retreated to the bedroom soon after the Oscars began.

I did watch the whole thing. Well, I turned the TV off after Slumdog was announced so I didn’t get to see the slew of people up on stage. I thought Hugh Jackman did a fine job of hosting. He didn’t actually get to be on stage much aside from the musical numbers. There were no stupid jokes, no uncomfortable jabs at the famous people in attendance. I thought the overall structure of the ceremony was interesting too. Though some of the presenters seemed ill at ease, I liked the idea of bringing former winners on stage to announce the most recent winner. I thought it was pretty low that they kept cutting to Brad and Angelina while Jennifer Aniston was on stage though. Overall I think that couple gets way too much attention. I’m kind of glad neither of them won last night.

There were no long-winded acceptance speeches. There were a few that were unintelligible due to language differences. But overall, things kept moving well. No one got cut off by the evil orchestra. Only two were even remotely political (Sean Penn and the guy who wrote the screenplay for Milk) and even those were still respectfully said and generally well received.

I was kind of confused by the musical montage of songs though. Only three nominations, two from Slumdog? Were there really no other songs in any of the movies this year? And wow, what a wardrobe malfunction when they announced the winner. The lady dancer to the right of the podium totally had her boob exposed. Luckily the 7-second tape delay enabled them to blur it, but come on. It was obvious. You could see her scramble to pull her shirt up when they cut away. Heh.

There were a few other technical difficulties I noticed. They had problems getting the curtain open for the first award montage. Some of the presenters went the wrong direction or forgot they had multiple awards to hand out. And, while not a technical difficulty, I was annoyed by the In Memorium section. I loved that they had Queen Latifah sing, but the pictures kept getting bigger and smaller, moving around the screens on the stage. It was really distracting.

I haven’t read too many “professional” critiques yet. I thought it was a pretty good show. I liked the musical montage, but if you’re not familiar with the musicals of days gone by I can understand why you’d think that was a bad idea. I liked how they intercut the current year’s best picture nominees with previous ones (the challenge was to see how many you could identify), but apparently this bothered some people. I didn’t really think the show dragged. I was more annoyed by stupid commercials (I’m looking at you Van Vreede’s) than stupid presentations and witty scripted banter. I thought the new format worked well – taking us through the whole film-making process in order and giving background. Then again, that’s something that appeals to me in general. I love the AMC show “Backstory” for this same reason. As I said before, I also liked seeing former winners present, but admit this was the part of the show that seemed the least sincere and the slowest. No show will ever make everyone happy. I do hope they decide to stick with some of these new ideas in the future.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Playing with Water

A Little Bit of Everything

Wow, I’m tired. This week was crazy.

Monday was bells. We’re scheduled to play three or four more times before May. It’s Easter right now and then Mother’s Day.

Tuesday was IMA and the speakers were probably the best so far this year. The first speaker was the marketing director at the Outagamie County Airport. Interesting presentation about how airports raise and spend money. The second speaker was an inspector from the Federal Protection Service. Lots of interesting stories about protecting federal buildings. The weather cooperated and the snow held off until I was back home.

Wednesday Adam went golfing and I spent a good deal of my evening cleaning up and doing laundry. I tried to catch up a little on my DVR shows. I also watched a movie – My Best Friend’s Girl. For such a crappy movie, it was actually pretty good. I actually fell off the couch laughing at one point. Seriously. It’s kind of raunchy, but nowhere near the unnecessary Judd Apatow level. Just raunchy enough. And Dane Cook is hilarious pretty much all the time anyway.

Thursday we went to dinner at The Clubhouse inside the Paper Valley before seeing "Wicked" at the PAC. We’d never been there before, but we’ll probably go back. The prices are phenomenal (although I suggested that perhaps Lombardi’s offsets the small margins in the bar) and the food was good. The service wasn’t extraordinary but I guess you take the good with the bad. The show on the other hand was definitely extraordinary. I’d tell everyone in the area to go see it, but unless you already have tickets I think you’re out of luck. The sets are amazing, the special effects are great (although we saw in the paper that the theatrical smoke set off the fire alarms and caused an evacuation last night. Whoops!), and the songs and actors are wonderful. Top notch all around. I wish I could have had the opportunity to see it with the original Broadway cast. Glinda is pretty much written for Kristen Chenoweth and I’m sure she was awesome. The story itself is pretty intriguing as well. As a fan of historical fiction, it was right up my alley. I also found it interesting that they have a core orchestra with keyboards and drums but then they use local musicians to flesh it out. Very cool.

We got home kind of late - around 11. Our seats were not conducive to a quick escape. The Carly alarm went off around 5:15. Last night I had a hair appointment after work. I was kind of overdue. I asked her to try something with curls and I came home looking like Little Orphan Annie. I suppose I should have been more specific. Heh.

This weekend has consisted of shopping – the lists had gotten rather long - and catching up on the DVR. Home improvement plans on the docket include replacing the lamp and clapper in the bedroom and re-vamping the shelving arrangements out in the garage. Tomorrow is the Oscar ceremony and I’ve not yet decided if I’m going to watch it. It will probably depend on whether I remember about it or not.

This afternoon we watched Madagascar 2 while the floor was drying. Not as good as I thought it would be, but still funny and watchable. We own the original. Don't think I'd bother to purchase the sequel.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

How the cats are slowly destroying the house

So I called home yesterday night on my way home from IMA to see if Adam needed me to pick up anything. He was in the process of trying to fix the lamp that sits on the nightstand in our bedroom. Apparently Ted and JC got into some kind of tussle on the bed and ended up falling off onto the table, which knocked the lamp on the floor. And then Ted somehow fell on it, breaking the top (that Adam had just SUPERGLUED with some scary, smelly, chemical compound) off. It’s baffling, really. When the lamp refused to work Adam thought perhaps it was the clapper we have it plugged into that was causing the problem. So he disconnected that and hooked it to the dehumidifier to make sure it still worked. Apparently you’re not supposed to use the clapper on the dehumidifier because it pretty much fried it immediately. D’oh! So, now we’re down a lamp and a clapper. I stopped at Walmart to see if I could find something cheap, but all their new Better Homes stuff is totally ugly. So, for now, the bedroom is kind of dark and we’ll look for a new lamp (and remote outlet) this weekend.

I’m sure this would be hilarious if it wasn’t becoming a regular occurrence around here.

Monday, February 16, 2009

I'm Partial to #3...

Historians recently ranked our past presidents. Lincoln came in first. Unsurprisingly, W was toward the bottom of the list, but not #42. He ranked #36. He came in above Millard Fillmore, Warren Harding, William Harrison, Franklin Pierce, Andrew Johnson, and James Buchanan. Let’s see why:

Millard Fillmore: He only became vice-president because the presidential candidate of the hour (Zachary Taylor) was such a divisive character and the party wanted to ensure they won. And he only became president because that same guy died while in office. His beliefs differed greatly from those of President Taylor so it’s no surprise that he couldn’t get much done. Slavery was also a hot topic. While he might not have been such a successful president, he was one of the founders of the University of Buffalo, so he can’t have been all bad.

Warren Harding: Normalcy indeed. Another guy who got elected not because he was a stellar candidate, but because the party was deadlocked in nominating the people they really wanted. Also a potential explanation how a “dark horse” beat out a Cox/FDR ticket: his was the first election in which women could vote. He was not a bad looking man, and his wife was very involved in the spreading the word about her candidate. That said, things didn’t go so well for this guy: Teapot Dome, stacking the deck in his cabinet with “The Ohio Gang.” He was also rumored to be quite the playboy, allegedly fathering multiple illegitimate children. (See, John Edwards, that’s nothing new.)

William Henry Harrison: This isn’t even a fair one - he died 32 days into his term! How could he have done anything? Granted, it was probably his own fault he died. Rumor is that he gave a long-winded inauguration speech even though it was cold and wet outside and caught a nasty cold.

Franklin Pierce: Good lord, yet another guy who was nominated by his party because they couldn’t decide which of the candidates they actually liked they should pick. We had a habit of shooting ourselves in the foot, eh? Pierce was another president whose major downfall came because of slavery. First there was the Kansas-Nebraska Act which nullified the Missouri Compromise, thus alienating half the country. His support of slavery (and later, the Confederacy) lost him the support of his own party. The fact that he was a drunk probably didn’t help either. Perhaps we need to give the guy some credit though: two months before he was sworn in as president his family was in a train wreck and his 11-year-old son was crushed to death. That had to suck.

Andrew Johnson: Johnson became president when Lincoln was assassinated. It’s got to be tough, being the follow up act to such a great opener. I mean, Lincoln is #1. Historians even say so! That alone had to drop Johnson quite a few notches on this list. North vs South. Republicans vs Democrats, everyone was up in arms and slavery and civil rights were in turmoil. Johnson was also the first president to be impeached, although he avoided conviction and removal from office by one vote. He’s never seen in a very good light. Then again, he did purchase Alaska. Just think - without Andrew Johnson, the Palins would be Russian!

James Buchanan: This one didn’t even want to be president! He accepted the nomination anyway, but you have to think perhaps his heart wasn’t in it. He even promised he wouldn’t run again in his inaugural address. He followed Franklin Pierce, so he had to deal with all the screw-ups left in that wake. But he really made no attempt to stop what became the Civil War. He was followed by Lincoln so I’m sure that further darkened his reputation. Perhaps also relevant, Buchanan was the only president who never married and there were rumors surrounding his relationship with a senator from Alabama.

So, were these guys worse than W? It’s pretty much accepted that the perception of success and failure varies depending on what’s going on in the world at the time the list is made. I guess we’ll see where historians rank him in 10 or 15 years.

Here’s the whole list.

1. Abraham Lincoln
2. George Washington
3. Franklin D. Roosevelt
4. Theodore Roosevelt
5. Harry S. Truman
6. John F. Kennedy
7. Thomas Jefferson
8. Dwight D. Eisenhower
9. Woodrow Wilson
10. Ronald Reagan
11. Lyndon B. Johnson
12. James K. Polk
13. Andrew Jackson
14. James Monroe
15. Bill Clinton
16. William McKinley
17. John Adams
18. George H.W. Bush
19. John Quincy Adams
20. James Madison
21. Grover Cleveland
22. Gerald R. Ford
23. Ulysses S. Grant
24. William Howard Taft
25. Jimmy Carter
26. Calvin Coolidge
27. Richard M. Nixon
28. James A. Garfield
29. Zachary Taylor
30. Benjamin Harrison
31. Martin Van Buren
32. Chester A. Arthur
33. Rutherford B. Hayes
34. Herbert Hoover
35. John Tyler
36. George W. Bush
37. Millard Fillmore
38. Warren G. Harding
39. William Henry Harrison
40. Franklin D. Pierce
41. Andrew Johnson
42. James Buchanan


Ah, Valentine’s Day. That most reviled of holidays. This year I heard it referred to as "Singles Awareness Day" and "Communist Day." Weird...

We actually went out for our “Valentine’s Day” dinner last Thursday. I don’t like crowds and I figured we could beat the red and pink craziness by taking care of it early. We went to Michiel’s in Menasha. A little smoky while waiting for our table, but not too bad in the dining room. Our jackets did suck up some of the smell though so we had to hang them in the garage over night to air out. Hopefully some day the smoking ban will have gotten to the whole state and we won’t have to worry about that at all.

Adam had a steak and I had the chicken stir fry. As far as I can tell, Adam enjoyed his meal, but I was not that impressed with mine. The chicken was dry, the peas were overcooked, and they only had linguine. What kind of place doesn’t have any short cut pasta? Anywho, we might go back again sometime. Not sure since they have the smoking thing against them already. We opted out of dessert at the restaurant and stopped at Culver’s on the way home instead. Their FOTD was cheesecake crisp. The ice cream was much sweeter than I anticipated. Almost tasted like Ben & Jerry’s Cake Batter. It was still good, of course.

Friday night we had dinner at home and then headed out to the Monkey Bar for the first time in what seems like ages. It was a lot nicer out than the last time we were downtown. Still kind of cold, but not snowing or windy. We were (of course) the first people in the door. The bartender is going to get to know us pretty well if we keep that up. We were through our first drinks before another couple arrived. They ordered one beer each, sipped it for like 20 minutes, and then left. Weird. The girl seemed very high-maintenance. Eventually the place began to fill up a little. A lot of Schenk people. We finally called it a night around 10:00 – way longer than we usually stay out. This was also reflected in my state of inebriation. I don’t get out much. Adam stopped for food on the way home and we headed to bed.

It was a bad night. Not because we went out. Because the cats had it in for us. Carly and JC began fighting with each other around 2am. Carly kept running around the bed and JC would follow her on the floor. She’d growl. He’d jump up at her. She’d hiss and throw a punch. Rinse, repeat. They just wouldn’t stop. I think at one point Adam got up and put Carly in the cat room in case she just needed to pee and JC wouldn’t let her get there. But they continued the ruckus after she was retrieved. They finally settled down and went back to sleep, but it made for a very unrestful night. We stayed in bed a couple extra hours in the morning.

When we finally got up we had quite a few places on our list for shopping. We went to Menards (of course!) where Adam picked up a vice and some new drill bits. We went to Fleet Farm for a replacement shovel blade. Grocery shopping. Sam’s. We stopped at Culver’s for lunch since we had a BOGO value basket coupon and my free birthday sundae coupons to use.

When we got home I baked the cake part of our at-home Valentine’s Day meal. Adam banged around downstairs with the shovel. I think I laid down to take a nap at some point. I really don’t remember. I just remember feeling crappy. Eventually I assembled the rest of the cake

and made the side dish.

Adam had gotten a lobster tail at Sam’s and that was his dinner. I was originally going to make steak, but since that’s what he had on Thursday, things got swapped around. (And I just now noticed that everything turned out to be RED. How cliche...) Everything worked out. I’m guessing we went to bed early.

Sunday morning we were up bright and early. I had bells to ring at the 8am service. Adam cleaned litter boxes while I was gone. He wasn’t home when I got back from church – he went to his parents’ house for a while to work on a Games! Magazine contest with his dad. I set about cleaning up the kitchen, doing dishes, laundry, cleaning up the rest of the pet room. Adam got back home, we had lunch. He watched the race, I watched part of it, went into the bedroom to watch something else, came back toward the end. It was “Adam makes dinner” night, but it kind of ended up being “Adam comes up with what’s for dinner and Martha makes it” instead. Not a big deal, since it was kind of a no-brainer, but still amusing. We caught the first HD Simpsons and then I finished cleaning up in the kitchen before heading to bed. I think I turned the TV off during American Dad because we were falling asleep.

Not too much kitty disturbance last night. Just the normal 5am pacing.

Today starts an unusually busy week. I have bell practice this evening. Tomorrow is IMA. Wednesday Adam will be gone golfing (indoors) so I’ll have an evening alone. Thursday is Wicked. Not a lot of cooking this week because of all this activity. I’ve got scrambled egg burritos on for tonight and then grilled chicken, plum, and onion kebabs on Friday.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Recognition by Omission?

One thing I struggle with by being part of the handbell group is that by participating in this activity, I end up attending mass when we play. Generally I can sit through the service with a minimal number of moments that make me want to laugh out loud (or, on the other side of things, make me mad.) This morning's readings were leprosy related, including the one where Jesus heals the leper. This is all well and good. But then in the homily, Fr Mike asked members of the congregation who they thought were modern-day lepers - people who are shunned or may feel left out in society. Want to know the answers that were volunteered?

Homeless people
People recently released from prison
People with mental illness

Notice anything missing? Are you surprised? Sometimes it makes me so sad, to see ignorance and intolerance at work right in front of me.

I know it's unfair to make sweeping judgements based on the ideas volunteered by four members of a congregation. But this is not the first time I've been so aware of the diversion of belief systems. It's a good thing no one expects me to be Catholic (or religious, really) any time soon...

Friday, February 13, 2009

Mother Nature Is Mean

So Monday it rained, was windy, but was relatively temperate. I think it stayed in the 40s all day long.

Tuesday was gorgeous. Sunshine, temperatures in the mid 50s. I drove with my windows down. Adam wore shorts. He washed his car in the driveway after work. This after it would have been insane to try and change the oil in his car in the garage a few weeks ago because it was so damn cold out.

Then yesterday through today it’s been back to gray skies, gloomy clouds. It hasn’t gotten too much colder yet – 30s and 40s – but after the one day of great weather, it’s very mean to drop us back into winter.

Monday, February 09, 2009

A Post in Which I Complain About Cats. A lot.

All things considered, it was a kind of boring weekend. Friday night we did nothing. We even ate leftovers. Ok, so we watched another nominated movie – Pineapple Express. One of the least offensive Judd Apatow endeavors, with not so much foul language, but much more bloody violence. Eh.

Saturday morning we did grocery shopping before heading down to Elkhart Lake. When we got back home, we took measurement for the loveseat, couch, and chair and Adam went to Menards to get hardboard to attach to the bottoms. The cats had started ripping off the fabric and climbing up into the frame, just like they had been doing with the box springs. Stupid cats. Anyway, I finished up our state taxes while he got the wood and cut it to the right dimensions at his parents’ house. He returned with the wood, compressor, and staple gun. We attached things. Got crabby. It was a fun night.

Sunday morning we read the paper, ate breakfast. Adam looked at my bathroom sink, which had begun leaking all over the things in the cabinet about a week ago. Or at least that’s when I noticed it. He decided the plumbing under the sink needed to be replaced. So we went back up to Menards and got the necessary items. Adam fixed the sink. We think. I’ve got a bucket under it to see if it leaks going forward. We filed state taxes. Federal refund is supposed to be deposited this Friday. Adam tried to offload the IMA video taken at the October meeting but was unsuccessful. We watched WALL-E. Cute, but once again, a very thinly veiled social commentary. And not necessarily a kid’s movie just because it’s animated. I’d imagine some kids would be frightened by the violence. We had pizza for dinner. Went to bed.

Were awakened at 3:00. Carly had been sleeping up on top of my dresser. I was concerned because she usually sleeps by my head and hadn’t been there all night. So I go looking for her all over the house only to turn and ask Adam where she was and notice her in the corner. Grrr. So I transfer her to my pillow only to come back from the bathroom and discover she was missing again. She crawled under the covers this time. Stupid cats. Then JC jumped up on me and in his effort to get under the covers as well, fell off the bed. He blamed me - tried to trip me later in the morning. We were up again around 5. That’s the hour that Carly apparently thinks we need to get up at. Every morning at 5 she starts pacing back and forth on the headboard, knocking things over and being obnoxious until one of us gets up and takes her to the cat room. Such a brat.

Somewhere along the line someone peed on Adam’s bathmat again so I had to wash that. Last Thursday we had a bloody paw incident where it looked like Carly had snagged a claw on something and tracked blood all over the couch and Adam’s shirt before we noticed it. We both got bloodier while trying to figure out what the problem was. Then, as the internet knows all, we tried to find out what to do about it. More than one website suggested dipping the bloody claw in flour to stop the bleeding. Great idea. Ended up getting flour all over the foot and tail of Carly as well as all over the counter and ourselves. And the floor, when she mutinied and escaped. Get this – cats don’t like having their feet dipped in flour. Didn’t see that one coming.

Anywho, we still love the cats. Most of the time.

This week is pretty un-special. Adam’s got his rescheduled eye appointment on Thursday. My plan is to go out for dinner that night to avoid the unruly crowds on Saturday. That’s about it. We’ll see how many more movies we can work into the week.

As for today, I didn't really do anything special for my birthday. Adam gave me a necklace last week and I got some cards and emails. No dinner, no hoopla. Just donuts at work and some candy for the ladies at bells tonight. All my exciting birthdays are behind me at this point, so it's ok.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Cinderella Synopsis

As promised. Try not to laugh. (click to enlarge so you can actually read it!)


We went to lunch this afternoon with my dad and Cheryl as an early birthday celebration. We went to the Lake Cafe in Elkhart Lake. Nice place, completely dead at 11:30 when we got there, but hopping by the time we left. We also stopped at the shop down the street that specializes in Nordic stuff. Adam did some Christmas shopping for next year. We went across the street to the Cottage Wood store as well, where I got this:

It was sitting on a table, holding clearance Christmas hot chocolate mixes. I had no interest in the mixes, but I immediately thought the tea cup was awesome. Why?

Because it's as big as my head!

Completely impractical, of course, and it's really meant to be a planter (as evidenced by the hole in the bottom of the cup.) But really. So cute. I couldn't resist.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Goodbye, Green Monster

Augh! Attack of month-end!

Anywho, last Thursday night we went to see Cinderella. We stopped for dinner at O’Charley’s. I ended up taking most of my meal home. I got soup since Adam didn’t want the option that came with his. Their bowls are huge! We stopped at Walgreens on the way downtown since Adam had managed to spill part of his dinner on his shirt and wanted to get Tide pen to keep in my purse. We got to the PAC soon after the doors opened. Adam headed to the bathroom to apply said Tide while I enjoyed the new couch on the third level. In observing our fellow audience members, I was none too surprised to see numerous little girls all decked out. Nothing brings them out like ballet.

We sat down in our usual box seats. The first thing out of my mouth was “there’s no orchestra.” They danced to canned music, which I guess is ok since the music from Cinderella is not as well known as, say, Swan Lake. Still, it took something away from the overall performance since you could hear the transitions between tracks. The role of the stepmother is played by a man in drag, which was obvious the second (s)he set foot on stage. And they played that up many times. It was disturbingly hilarious. This is much more a comedic ballet than Swan Lake, so it was definitely a different viewing experience. Also comedic was the badly translated synopsis in the program. I've tried to scan it so everyone can have fun reading it, but the scanner is being moody. I'll keep working on that.

Friday morning I was up bright and early, exceedingly happy that for the first time in months, inventory day hadn’t been plagued by horrible weather conditions. I got my monthly bribe of donuts for my counters and so began another month-end. After the deadness out in the plant of the past two months, things were definitely a lot busier this month. Which is a good thing since you can’t make money if you don’t produce anything. Both Adam and I left work a little early. Adam because he went over his 40 hours for the week and they kicked him out and me because I felt like it. Aaah, the life of a salaried employee. :) This confused the cats, as they are programmed to begin stalking me and meowing for food the second I take my coat off. Totally Pavlovian. For dinner I made Crabmeat Scramble for Adam and Turkey and Bow Ties for me. We watched Tropic Thunder. Strange movie, but not horrible.

Saturday morning we had every intention of getting out early to get our shopping done. As Adam came out of the shower the phone rang. It was the furnace guy. He wanted us to take the furnace off the sump pump circuit and give it its own circuit before he would install the furnace. He was coming to install it on Monday. Nice. So Adam went downstairs to see what he could do. I once again became his tool girl. Eventually he came up with a way to make it all work without having to go out and buy more wire. He’s so handy. We did have to go get a circuit though. So after he got things prepped we headed out. We went to Menards, picked up a $4 circuit... and another toilet. Adam came down with a case of toilet envy after he saw and heard how cool my new toilet was. They were on sale (and as we learned later, his toilet was a mess and had actually cracked at some point), so we decided to go for it.

We did the rest of our shopping and then headed home. We unloaded and Adam finished up installing the new circuit while I put the groceries away. Then he set about installing his new toilet. The old one just didn’t want to leave. The tank refused to come off the bowl and ended up cracking into pieces. The floor bolts wouldn’t come off and Adam ended up having to saw them apart. It was a lot more work than I think he anticipated it would be. And he did this one alone (well, without his dad. I shuttled tools and towels for him.) He finally got it done and took it for a test drive. He got the tall, elongated version of my short, round toilet.

His parents came over and we went to dinner at Solea. This time I got the Chicken Fajitas. Adam’s mom and I actually split a two-person entrĂ©e. We probably could have gotten a one-person and been fine. Huge portion sizes! Still very good.

Sunday morning Adam cleaned out the firewood bin and we refilled it. Almost all of the wood in the garage is gone. It’s amazing how much we’ve burned through this winter. I did some cleaning, Adam vacuumed. We watched Vicky Cristina Barcelona. Ok movie, although I have the distinct feeling that I’ve seen it before. Or at least the major plot points. Not to spoil it or anything, but it’s pretty much about a summer two friends spend abroad, life-changing opportunities present themselves, but they go back to exactly their same lives at the end. It’s one of those “why did I waste 90 minutes watching this film when they ended up doing absolutely nothing?” films. This brings my total up to 9 award nominees watched.

Adam’s parents came over to watch the first half of the Super Bowl. Adam had picked out some recipes he found online and I spent most of the first quarter finishing up dinner. We ate, watched the 3D commercials before the halftime show. I was unimpressed, but I think my glasses messed it up a little since everyone else thought it was cool. Adam’s parents left at halftime, I cleaned up, did some catch-up online (obviously not here though. Heh.), and went to watch TV in the bedroom. I had over a week of Rachael Ray and Conan’s to catch up on. I flipped back and forth to keep an eye on the game and cheered when the Steelers got that last minute score. Adam had been rooting for the Cardinals, but seeing as how both my parents are from Pittsburgh, I figured I should probably stand on the other side of that fence. Plus, I like being contrary. (see: my favoring of the Vikings.)

Monday morning I was up as usual and off to work. Adam had the day off to oversee the installation of our new furnace. He called me off and on during the day to keep me updated. They were actually early, finished on time, and it seemed to be a generally pleasant experience. Except for that bill they left us. *sigh* I went straight from work to bell practice so I didn’t see the new furnace until I got home later in the evening. Gone is our green monster, replaced by a much smaller, much quieter, much more efficient brown guy.

Seeing as how we had our first gas/electric bill over the $300 mark this past month, it will be interesting to see how this new furnace affects that.

We were missing a person again at practice (I don’t think we’ve had a full rehearsal yet this year) and that always makes things interesting. Things began somberly with an update on our member who continues to battle cancer. She’d taken a turn for the worse earlier last month when they found tumors in her brain. They began to cause her to have troubles moving the opposite side of her body and when she had a nasty fall they decided to put her in a nursing home for a few weeks. They have been doing more radiation, but the tumors appear to be growing regardless. It’s a difficult situation. We pass around a card each week, but really, what can you say? All you can do is offer your support and (if it’s your thing) pray for them. It’s heartbreaking.

Whoa, talk about bringing things down. In any case, the rest of the week is pretty empty. Adam’s dad will be taking my car in to get fixed tomorrow, even though the check engine light went off last week. I’ve got some new recipes to try for dinner every night. Not much else going on.

I was going to post some cute cat pictures to try and end this post on a lighter note, but my computer freaked out and turned itself off, Norton freaked out and stopped working for a while, and I freaked out trying to delete a form from our state taxes. Note to WI DOR: your new e-file site SUCKS. And now I'm tired and crabby and really don't want to sit here and wait for pictures to upload. So sorry. Look for cute pictures later though. I've got an adorable video of JC and the water dish.