Tuesday, January 31, 2006

They Say The Way To A Man's Heart Is Through His Stomach

Date # 4 is tomorrow night, and it's a biggie. NB is coming here for dinner and I am cooking up some goodies.

The Menu:

crackers and cheese
shrimp cocktail

main course:
pasta primavera

grasshopper squares (recipe to follow)

for brownie layer
1 1/2 sticks butter
10 1/2 oz bittersweet choc. finely chopped
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
3 lrg eggs beaten
1 1/4 t. vanilla
3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbs cocoa powder
3/4 t. salt

for mint ganache
1/2 cup heavy cream
10 oz white choc. chopped
2 Tbs green Creme de menthe
1 t peppermint extract

for chocolate ganache
1 cup heavy cream
10 oz bittersweet choc, finely chopped

make brownies
preheat oven to 375
melt butter and choc. with brown sugar over moderate heat, until smooth. Remove from heat. Add eggs and vanilla. Whisk together. Whisk in the rest of ingredients. Spread into 13 by 9 baking dish, and bake for 20 minutes. Cool completely, about 90 minutes.

make mint ganache
bring cream to simmer. Remove from heat. Pour over white choc. Let stand 1 minute, then whisk. Stir in remaining ingredients. Chill, covered, 1 hour.

make choc. ganache
bring cream to simmer. Remove from heat. Pour over bittersweet choc. Let stand 1 minute, then whisk. Chill, covered, 1 hour.

Assemble layers
spread mint ganache over cooled brownies. Then chill about 30 min.
Spread choc over mint and let chill 2 hours
feed to NB and watch the magical effects of chocolate
hope that no one gets sick
make out on couch



Monday, January 30, 2006

So Much To Say

Not sure where to start.

4th date is this Wednesday night. I'm cooking dinner. I'm having my usual self-doubting moment, which I attribute to not having spoken to him in quite some time. But I did get an email yesterday. I won't post the whole thing, but here was the last line: What is your week looking like this week? I'd like to get together ASAP :) Didn't want our night from last week to ever end... So I keep re-reading that and thinking to myself that he does like me.

I got a cool email today from one of Joe's ICU doctors. He had written an essay about the whole experience of caring for Joe, and he submitted it to a journal of medicine. And he found out today that they're publishing it! I think it will be in next month's issue. The essay was really amazing, and I thought it captured Joe's time in the ICU accurately. Once the essay is actually published, I'll print it here.

We have an ant problem in my house. I swear to you, my floors have never been cleaner. I am trying everything to get rid of these ants. I've been having nightmares about them at night, and now I think I've caused Jacob to be scared of ants.

Patrick had his big sex ed weekend. Will do a new post about that.

Widow group was really fun tonight. RAD had received some sad news about a close friend of hers before she came to group, so it started out sad. But she pulled through, and we ended up having out usual fun time. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, it isn't widow group unless somebody cries at some point. But the majority of it is usually filled with laughter. Oh, and we found out Susan is going to be the guest of honor at a big Gilda Radner cancer fundraiser. Of course, Susan didn't tell us about it. But we'll be there, with bells on. And coincidentally, it falls on a Monday night :O)

I think that's it for now.


Patrick's Sex Ed Weekend
(I will now hand the blog over to Patrick)

So let me try to write something blogworthy about the weekend...

Friday night we played a game we call the "Dirty Word Game." We take the terms sexual intercourse, vagina, penis, masterbation, and breasts, and give them to the group which has been divided into two. They come up with as many slang words as possible for the terms. (see pic above)

For Saturday we had two professional psychologists come and help (they were a couple, one guy one girl). We started out the sex ed stuff by filling out a sheet that asked about values and what would you do if... situations. (For example the first questions was 1a) who should be responsible for the first kiss 1b) who should be responsible for the sexual pace of the relationsip and 1c) who should be responsible for the birth control). Then we split up into same gender groups and had a long 'q and a' period. We got into lots of stuff about relationships, biology. It was interesting to me that while talking about biology we talked about what parts are more or less sensitive, e.g. we were giving sex tips. But we were teaching that sex can be fun, so it is important to go over how to make it fun.

After making a list of 5 things we wanted to know about the opposite gender, and 5 things we wanted to know about our gender, we brought the two groups together and answered those questions. We then talked a lot about communicaiton in relationships, and the differences between men and women in relationships, that sort of stuff.

Later we passed around condoms and different birth control things, and had people practise putting the condoms on cucumbers while going over some condom use tips (don't flip the condom over, don't keep it in your wallet, lambskin doesn't protect against STDs as well as latex does, etc)

It felt like an all-encompassing sex ed session.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Loss Of Memories

We went to NY for the day today. My uncle is turning 50, so a bunch of family members, including my sister and her family met up at his house to celebrate. It wasn't your typical celebration, but it was nice to see everyone. My nephew is getting so big, and I even got to see him walking! It was also nice to see my cousins for the first time in over a year.

My mother and step-father drove with me, and on the ride home we got to talking about how all 3 boys (my 2 and my nephew) look so much like one of us. My nephew looks like my sister, Josh looks like me, and Jacob is the spitting image of Joe. I asked my mom if she notices that when she looks at Jacob, or if she's sort of forgotten how Joe looked. She didn't really answer that, but instead said that he doesn't look like anyone in our family, so he must look like Joe. I felt sad when she said that, but then she added that Jacob has Joe's sense of humor. I asked what she meant, and she said that Joe was really funny.

Now, I can remember what Joe looked like, and I can remember that he was funny. But the details...the details are getting fuzzy. His voice (other than the fact that it was deep) is gone from my memory. Totally gone. But I can practically feel his hand touching mine right now. It's that familiar to me.

I remember laughing a lot with Joe. But why? I don't remember what we laughed about.

It's scary to think about what I'm forgetting. If anyone can help me remember, I'd certainly appreciate it.


Thursday, January 26, 2006

Is it me? Or is this messed up?

I subscribe to the Boston Globe Thurs-Sun. I would love to get it every day, but really don't have the time to read it. Well, perhaps if I got off the computer a bit more I'd have time, but I digress.

I was getting a special 12 week deal where I was paying $2.50 per week. So the Globe just called me and told me that my 12 weeks are up. But they have good news! They can offer me all 7 days for just $2.88 per week.

I said that I simply don't have time for 7 days of delivery, so I'd like that rate for my 4 days of delivery.

Well, that's not possible. If I'd like to keep my 4 days, I need to pay $6.00 per week instead of the $2.88 for 7 days.

Does this make sense? So I cancelled my subscription. I'm sure I'll get a call tomorrow offering me an even better deal than I had before, but this is just plain silly. Right?

This is my 100th post!

Can you believe it?


Wednesday, January 25, 2006

The Date

I got to NB's house at 7:00. His apartment is really nice. It's the first floor of a huge, Victorian house. Lots of stained glass windows, hardwood floors, and a fireplace.

We each had a glass of wine, and then decided to walk to dinner. I went to use the bathroom before leaving, and when I came out, he had turned off the lights, and pulled me to him for a kiss. It was really sweet.

We walked to the restaurant, which was about a 20 minute walk. It was a little cold (actually, really cold) but the conversation flowed easily.

We went to a pub for dinner. It was a really cute place, and dinner was delicious. I had a burger with a side salad instead of fries (ate half of both). He had a good pasta dish, that he had me try. He paid for dinner, and got us a cab to take home.

He opened the door for the cab for me and as I slid in I did something funny to my neck. You know when you move it just the wrong way and it pulls something? No? Well, that's what happened, and I really couldn't move my head without major pain. I told NB what had just happened, and he pulled me in close and massaged my neck. It was really sweet, and felt amazing, I must say. Not sure the last time I got a neck massage.

We got back to his place, went inside and snuggled on the couch. There was no awkwardness or anything; it was as if we had done it for months. We just lay there, talking for about 30 minutes. I then announced that I had better get going because I had told the sitter that I'd be home by 11 and it was 10:30.

He pulled me in for a kiss, and we stayed kissing for literally half an hour. I had no idea that time could go by so quickly, because it felt like 5 minutes, but sure enough, the clock read 11. I told him that I really had to go. He walked me to my car, opened the door for me, kissed me goodbye, and closed the door.

When I got home there was an email from him saying what a fabulous night he had. A perfect ending to a perfect date.


Tuesday, January 24, 2006

My Date...
was amazing.

Am too tired to post details now, but will do so tomorrow after boys go to bed. I really wouldn't change a thing about it though.

Yay to good dates! (and a third date no less!)

Thanks for all of your well wishes.

Sweet Dreams,

Monday, January 23, 2006

My Trash Can

Over on Walter's blog he wrote a post about his $40 new toothbrush. I commented that I paid $200 for my trash can, so I didn't think $40 for a toothbrush sounded crazy.

Well, this led to a little debate as to why in the world I would purchase such a trash can. I said that I would post about it tonight, hence this post.

I used to have the old fashioned trash can in my kitchen, and really had no problem with it. But both my sister, and JRowe would regularly comment on the fact that it smelled, and was gross.

So off I went to purchase a new trash can. I walked into the Container Store and saw this gleaming, beautiful trash holder begging me to take it home. I stepped on the foot pedal and the two sides easily parted up into the air. When I released my foot, the two sides slowly and silently lowered themselves back down.

I knew it had to be mine. It keeps smells out (or in), is stylish (I think) and is so sturdy it's never knocked over.

Worth $200? I say, absolutely!!!!

What do you say?


Sunday, January 22, 2006

Good News

NB's trip was cancelled, so our Tuesday night plans are back on! And when I told him I was glad that I'd get to see him, he said, "Me too. It's been too long already."


(how junior high is this post?)

Saturday, January 21, 2006

My Report Cards.....

Are done!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It only took me about 10 hours.


Friday, January 20, 2006


First of all, thanks for all of your words of support.

He called me about an hour ago. Patrick and I were just at the end of watching Million Dollar Baby. So of course I was on the verge of tears to start.

He flew into Boston and was supposed to drive directly to CT. to visit his son. His car wouldn't start, not even with a jump. So he's taking the train to CT tomorrow morning. Then he's flying from NYC to Minnesota on Mon morning. Then he's off to Seattle on Wed, and is returning Sunday.

So when will I see him again? You will be very impressed with me, because I didn't ask.

Maybe a week from Tuesday?

We talked for maybe 10 minutes, and the conversation flowed easily. He said he'd call me from the train tomorrow, which was nice.

But his schedule pretty much sucks. I guess it's a positive that he has a good job. And he did call me.


Feeling Paranoid

Things with NB have been going really well. Two nights ago we chatted for about 2 and a half hours. Really great conversation. Lots of laughing, flirting, etc.

I'm not seeing him this weekend, b/c he's spending it with his son (which he should be). So our plan was to get together on Tuesday night (mon night is widow group).

He sent me an email yesterday saying that it looks like he may have to be in Minnesota next week for work. I emailed him back that I understood.

Haven't heard from him since. I emailed him again this morning, just sharing a funny story. Still no word.

Then I just got home and turned on my computer. His IM name was lit up. Within 5 seconds it was off.

I'm assuming he's avoiding me.

Ugh!!!!!! I hate dating!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Thursday, January 19, 2006

Let's Talk About Sex

Ok, before all of my friends and family get freaked out that I'm about to share information that they don't want to know, let me explain.

Patrick (remember, the guy who made up the cheer with me?) is a youth group leader for his church. He claims that this church is not really religious, and that this youth group has nothing to do with religion.

They are going to be having a youth group weekend retreat where the topic is...you guessed it, sex.

He and his co-leaders are trying to compile a list of the top 10 things they wish they had been told about sex when they were in high school. I told him that I would help the cause, and post his mission here.

edited for clarification: they are not teaching abstinence. This is basically a sex ed course for kids who may have misconceived ideas about sex. However, my # 10 is really pretty much a joke. I wouldn't expect Patrick to teach them that one. So let's make this top ten list a funny one, ok?

So, let's make this list, shall we?

(I'll start, but please feel free to join in)

10. The first time hurts more than anyone could ever possibly warn you. And so does the second, third, fourth, and fifth time. Then it starts to improve. But it takes quite a while for it to become good. So my lesson for the high schoolers and to just keep sticking with it! (I'm going to Hell for sure.)


Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Lurkers, Reveal Yourselves

So I missed National delurking week. But I don't think it's too late for me to make the request that all of you lurkers (and non-lurkers) reveal yourselves.

If you read this blog on a somewhat regular basis, please just say a quick hello. This includes all of my widow group friends! Just click on comments, and leave one.

Thanks so much,

Tuesday, January 17, 2006


Here's one great memory I have of Joe. It pretty much sums up his fun personality.

It was Cinco De Mayo, 2001. Joe was at a party about 2 miles away. JRowe and I were at a school event, but joined him at the party around 10pm. JRowe had never met Joe before. When we arrived at the party Joe was pretty drunk. By the time we were ready to leave, he was really drunk. Far too drunk to drive his prized new car. (Which, by the way, was an '89 Cadillac Fleetwood that he kept making people at the party admire. In particular, he was very proud of the trunk space.)

I was going to drive his car home, and JRowe was going to drive Joe home. JRowe was single at the time, and Joe decided to give her some friendly realtionship advice. Both Joe and JRowe shared this conversation with me separately afterwards, and they both seemed to think it was a great conversation. Joe thought he gave excellent advice, and JRowe thought he was hilarious. I am now trying to use his advice when looking to date someone.

Here are his pearls of wisdom:

1. He cannot live at home with his parents

2. He must like porn (this doesn't mean he needs to have a collection, or even a subscription, but he can't be offended by it.) How do I gently find out if a potential suitor likes porn? LOL

3. His car shouldn't be too nice (b/c that means he's putting his money to his car, but not toward more important things.) I'll let that rule slide for now :)

4. He must drink alcohol (Not that he should be an alcoholic, but if he never drinks, he's most likely a recovering alcoholic which means he could fall off the wagon.)

That's all I can remember...JRowe, anything I'm forgetting?

That's a little snippet of who Joe was. Always good for a laugh.


Wife Swap

I admit it, I love this show. I think what I love about it is that it makes my family look normal. I always pick which family I would rather be a part of, and it's never a clear cut decision. Both families are almost equally nuts.

Anyone else watch this silly show?


Monday, January 16, 2006

New Memories

This was the topic at widow group tonight. How sad it is that there will never be new memories with our husbands. And the memories that we have are starting to fade. I hadn't thought about the no new memories concept.

I really need to cherish the memories that I have. I think tomorrow's post will be some of my favorite (publishable) memories.

But this picture is one of my favorites. Joe and Jacob. So happy. So peaceful together. Father and son.



Thank God He's Cute

Because holy crap, was I ever ready to scream at him today. My day started out fine. We ran some errands, played some games, no problem. Then Melanie came over to watch the boys so I could have an adult only lunch with my friend, Nikki.

Lunch was great. Nikki let me vent for a bit, and then we were laughing away like normal.

I got home just in time for the boys to take a nap. (Thank you, Mel!)

I watched the pilot episode of Lost while the boys napped. This was a huge treat, as I've owned the dvd for about 2 months now, but this was my first chance to watch it. I loved it, and can't wait to watch more.

Then the boys woke up. Or more accurately, one boy and one monster woke up.

Honestly, I have no idea what was going on with Joshua. He screamed the word "no" over and over, while running in circles around the house for literally, an hour. If I tried to calm him down, he would hit me. He was so angry, over something that is unclear to me.

By the end of this tirade I was in tears, Jacob was in tears, and Joshua was sitting happily in his rocking chair drinking his milk.

Thank god for bedtime.


Sunday, January 15, 2006

More About My Day

Someone recently wrote a rant on the widow board entitled, "They're your kids too." Basically the rant was about when you're at your wit's end with your kids, and you say to your husband/wife, "They're your kids too. I need a break." And you take the break you so very much need.

When Jacob was a baby, on weekends I would do the first shift with him. That would usually be from 6 am-8am. Then I would go back to sleep, and Joe would do the second shift. I'd sleep until 10 or so. Then Jacob would be down for a nap, and Joe and I would have time together.

And when Jacob was sick, or teething, or just being a pain in the ass, we could take turns dealing with him.

Today was one of those days where we were stuck in the house (due to the weather) and the boys were making me crazy. They just wouldn't stop fighting and whining, and well...acting their ages. And I just wanted to take a shower, or a nap, or read the paper. I just wanted a break.

And it hit me. I am a single parent. And I am not cut out to be, nor did I choose to be a single parent.

Being a mom is hard. But being a mom with no dad just sucks.

Don't get me wrong, I love my boys more than anything in the world. I will always be grateful that Joe and I created them together, and that they will be a reminder to me of him.


How did this happen? How is this my life?

Thanks for all of your kind words of support.


I paid attention when MK was here. I really did. And I even got Slacker Mom up as a link in the sidebar. But I've been trying to get my other faves up ther too, and it's simply not working. I'm perplexed.

I was trying to get the Rambling Muse
as a link. And also Walter as a link. I already showed you MK's blog. But I wanted to add Jen's blog to the list. And one of my biggest faves to visit these days is Selina's lovely, G-rated blog.

But I couldn't do any of that, because I am just not computer savvy enough, I guess.


I learned some cool new tricks today. MK
came over to help me figure out how to add links to my blog. Thanks, MK. Everyone should check out his cool blog here. He's running the Boston Marathon, and his blog is all about his training process, as well as the music he listens to while he's training.

I have to go write report card comments now. Last night it took me three hours to write 5 comments. Think I overanalyze each one? When I'm done I'll add all of you fellow bloggers that I know read me regularly to my sidebar. Yay! Thanks, MK!

Today was one of those days....

I really wanted Joe with me.

That's it.


Saturday, January 14, 2006

Date # 2

I picked NB up at 11:30 at his house. Due to the rain, and the parking craziness that is Cambridge, he just came out to my car, so I didn't get to see inside his house. But it's in a really cute neighborhood, and it's a two family big victorian. Very pretty on the outside.

Scored an awesome parking spot just down the street from the museum. I insisted on paying for the tickets, even though he tried hard not to let me.

The museum was beautiful. It used to be someone's residence. (side story that my mother told me so I could impress NB with some historical information: Isabella Stewart Gardner built this unbelievable mansion in the middle of swampland back in the late 1800's. Everyone thought she was crazy for building it where she did. She didn't let anyone see the house until it was complete, at which point she threw a huge party. Before the party, she needed to test out the acoustics for the musicians. Because music sounds differently with people in the room, she needed to fill the room with people. But, since she didn't want anyone to see the house before the party, this became a dilemma. How did she solve it? Well, there's a school for the blind not too far from the mansion. She brought 100 students from the school to her house to test out the acoustics. And of course, they couldn't see the house.)

Anyways, we had a great time in the museum. It doesn't have the best labels, so we made up stories of what many of the pieces were used for. Lots of laughing.

We then went to one of my favorite restaurants. Again, snagged a great parking spot. We shared a salad, and each had a different pasta dish I had rigatoni, broccoli, and chicken. He had chicken parm, All was yummy, and again conversation was easy and fun. he insisted on paying for lunch, and I didn't fight too hard to get him to change his mind.

I then drove him to the airport. I got out of the car to say goodbye, and we had a nice kiss. He told me he'd see me soon, and we parted.

Awesome date. Am looking forward to the next one.


Friday, January 13, 2006

Tomorrow's Date # 2!

I'm picking up NB (New Boy) tomorrow morning at 11:30. We have a really great date planned, so it should be fun, despite the rain we're expecting.

I've spoken to NB either on the phone or through IM every day this week. He is clearly liking me, and I am clearly liking him.


But what?

I'm not sure. I think women are somehow trained to really fall for guys that treat us like crap, and are scared away by guys who could actually improve our lives.

So NB really likes me and that's becoming a turnoff.


Jenn and Melanie were here earlier, and they were both trying to convince me to let someone treat me well for a change. (not that others haven't treated me well, just that it's been a while.)

NB comes up with really great date plans. He seems caring and attentive. He asks me how my day was, and really seems like he's interested in the answer. He has an awesome job. He has a son (which in my opinion, is a bonus) and he's Jewish.

Please help me relax and just enjoy this one. Don''t let me screw it up.


Thursday, January 12, 2006

Patrick, This one's for you!

Top 5 reasons working with Patrick (the aide in my classroom) is so fun:

1. He is willing to make up and perform cheers with me about random events. Today's cheer was in preparation for tomorrow's guest speaker.

me: Go Rob
Patrick: Go Eliot
me: Go Rob
Patrick: Go Eliot
Patrick: Our kids need a kick in the butt
me: Help us here at Eliot
Patrick: Please tell us what to do
me: and we'll say a big thank you
Me: Go Rob
Patrick: Go Eliot
Me: Go Rob
Patrick: Go Eliot
unison: Gooooo Rob!

We actually performed this cheer for many speechless teachers after school today. We even performed it for the principal, who actually cracked a smile. ANd yes, I know this is a lame cheer. And that's really the point. How many people will not just go along with, but help create such a lame cheer, and THEN perform it with enthusiasm? Go Patrick!

2. He isn't too loud. Nothing worse then an aide in the room who is so loud you want to tell him/her to be quiet more often than you want to tell the kids.

3. He's awesome with the boy he's assigned to help. This child is not the easiest to be around, and Patrick deals with him way better than I do.

4. He's fun to be with, and laughs with me throughout the day. Yet definitely notices when I am in a more serene mood, and gives me the space that I need.

5. He reads this blog (and when pressured posts comments) every day.

Why I Love Melanie Like A Sister

Melanie gave birth to her 2nd daughter about 5 weeks before Joe was hospitalized. And her baby had been hospitalized at about 3 weeks old for a few days, so it wasn't the most relaxing maternity leave. While Joe was in the hospital, she pretty much was in charge of my house/son. She organized a crew to be here all day cleaning, cooking, and playing with Jacob. She drove me back and forth to and from the hospital, and stayed solid as a rock for me.

Joe went into the hospital on a Saturday. On Wednesday night at 3AM (so really Thursday) the doctors from ICU woke me up from the little room I was sleeping in at the hospital. They told me that they had to do a risky procedure to Joe, and I should go and talk to him for a few minutes (even though he was in a coma.) They were worried that this would be my last chance to speak to him while he was alive, but they also wanted me to tell him to fight for his life.

My mother was out of the country at the time (desperately trying to get home), and my sister was sleeping at my house with Jacob. I knew that I didn't want to be alone after I said my goodbyes to Joe.

The nurse asked me if I wanted her to call someone. I instantly said, "melanie."

Later, the nurse told me that Melanie answered the phone and as soon as the nurse said who she was, melanie said, "I'll be right there." and hung up the phone. She didn't even wait for an explanation for the call.

She found me sitting in the lounge, crying hysterically, with the hospital's rabbi by my side, waiting to hear if Joe made it through the procedure or not. She knew not to say anything. And there she stayed until the doctors reappeared and said that the procedure was successful. I spent the rest of the day holding onto Joe's dying body, until his heart finally stopped beating at 5PM that afternoon.

Melanie was the first person to get the phone call. She then made all the calls that needed to be made. And she never stopped.

She always knows what I need, even when I don't.


Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Grief can take care of itself, but to get the full value of joy you must
have somebody to divide it with. Mark Twain

I stole this from an email RAD just sent to widow group. Trying to figure out what I think about it. But now that it's posted, I realize I'm too tired to figure out what I think about it. So bed it is.

But just have to add that I have (had?) this terrible, irrational fear of rain. But it's pouring right now, and my initial reaction was that of excitement instead of fear. I can't wait to get into my cozy bed with the rain beating against my window. Mmmm.


Word Verification

Lots of people have word verification on their blogs. That means that when you go to post a comment, you have to type in the letters shown above the submit button. Supposedly this helps reduce spam, which I've been very lucky not to receive thus far.

The problem is, the letters are all funky and slanted. And for some reason, I have trouble determining what they are. I often make a mistake, and so my comment is denied until I get it right.

I teach the third grade, dammit. I should be able to correctly identify letters on a screen.

Please, someone tell me that they too struggle with letter verification. It can't just be me, can it?

Quick S.S. update

I just called my local Social Security office while my students were in Spanish. Strangely enough, I was connected to Mrs. Choy, the woman who originally figured out how much money the boys were supposed to be getting. I told her that I remembered speaking with her originally because she had been so kind and caring on the phone. (this is true, it wasn't just to suck up to her!)

She looked up my records and could not understand why S.S. reduced the payments. She still came up with the same figure that we had been getting.

"So, you can change it back?" I asked hopefully.

She giggled. "Oh, no. This is out of my hands. It goes through the national office."

"So what should I do?"

"If I were you, I would appeal. Something is wrong with what they're telling you."

So now I'm appealing. But isn't it messed up that the rep. from S.S. is telling me that the new payment is wrong, but she can't do anything about it?

Ugh!!!!!! At least she sided with me, I guess. And I didn't cry (that's big for me) or even feel like crying.

Will write more tonight. (not about S.S.)


Tuesday, January 10, 2006

How Cool Is The Other Rebecca? (by special request from my sister)

Here are the top 10 reasons that my sister is great:

1. She and I can laugh together over the stupidest things. And we can laugh about it for years. Becca, what's the shortest song? (h) (l) (m)

2. She is the best cook and baker that I know (well, tied with my brother)

3. She is an amazing aunt to my boys, and I know that if anything ever happened to me she would raise them with never ending love.

4. She stays calm in a crisis.

5. She took off from work when Joe was in the hospital and came to Boston to be with me.

6. She is one of the biggest reasons I survived Joe's death. She stayed with me for weeks, and then came up every weekend for months even though she was also very pregnant. She was then with me for Joshua's birth and stayed with us for more than a week after he was born.

7. She threw me the best surprise party for my 30th birthday that I could have asked for, and then took me to The Four Seasons for a spa weekend.

8. She doesn't cut me any slack.

9. She doesn't judge me.

10. She is my best friend.

Update On Guy

So he's away on business all of this week and next week. But he gets home on Friday night at midnight, and goes away again on Sat. at 6 PM. And he asked me if I could see him during the day Sat!

Here's the date plan. I'm picking him up at 11:30. We're going to the Gardner Museum in Boston. Then grabbing some lunch at yummy Sorrento's, and I'll drop him at the airport at 4. What a great date plan!


Monday, January 09, 2006

Interesting Conversation At Lunch Today

First, I feel the need to back up and explain the whole (well, not whole but a bit of the) J thing. J is a nice guy that I dated for about 4 months beginning last April and ending in August. I enjoyed his company but never really felt any kind of spark. And he had some (how do I put this delicately?) issues in the bedroom. As in, we really never did any more than kiss.

Basically, we were more like friends than boyfriend/girlfriend. And he had other issues too. Like he was claustrophobic, so he couldn't even snuggle in bed.

I broke up with him on the first day of school. He was pretty upset, and we didn't speak for maybe 2 months. I was then dating my latest ex, but J decided we were meant to be together. He sent me an email stating his feelings, and I wrote back explaining all that was wrong with our relationship.

Fast forward to last week. I went to dinner with him so that he could have closure with our "relationship." He emailed me the next day saying how great dinner was, and how he was looking forward to spending a lot more time with him.

Here is the email I sent in response:

I too had a nice time last night. But J, I don't see us getting back together. I know that's what you want, and envision, but I don't. I think you're a great guy, and I would like to remain friends, because I enjoy talking to/spending time with you. But I just don't feel that romantic connection to you. I'm sorry because I know that's not what you want to hear. But I feel like I owe it to you to be honest.

He sent me back the following email:

Of course I’m not happy that you no longer have those feelings for me, I’ll always regret not doing the right things at the right time in order to make our relationship better.
But I really appreciate you being honest.  I hope you have a great trip and a great weekend!
Game over, right? Wrong.

A mutual friend of ours came into the Teachers' Room today at lunch and said she heard from her friends this weekend that J and I were getting back together. He's been telling his friends that we are getting back together! I am completely baffled. Isn't this odd?

How Cool Is Rebecca?

Rebecca from widow group is so cool that for New Year's Eve she was in the VIP lounge of the party hosted by Lindsay Lohan and Nicole Ritchie, with music spun by DJAM. I just read all about this bash in my latest people magazine, and then Rebecca informed us at widow group tonight that she was there! Rebecca, you rock! Glad you had so much fun. What a difference a year can make in the life of a young widow. Last year we all sat around crying, and this year you were partying with the stars! RAD, I know you're rolling your eyes right now, not quite sure who these celebrities are, but trust me, this was a pretty cool party to attend.


Sunday, January 08, 2006

Up On My Soapbox

This whole S.S. issue (Joe's cousin told me to send her all the paperwork and someone will do the appropriate research.) has made me feel the need to urge all of you reading this to get life insurance. Especially if you have kids.

I cannot tell you how many times we almost got life insurance. The paperwork sat on the kitchen table for months, but we always put it off.

Then Joe died. And there was no life insurance. And I am screwed if I lose the S.S. money I was getting. Had we only filled out the paperwork, and paid the minimal fee, I'd be fine financially, even better than we were before.

So please, please, please (you know who you are) get yourselves some freaking life insurance. It does not matter if you are halfway done with the process, it will do you no good if your spouse dies tomorrow. Do it now.

*gracefully steps down from soapbox*

Langston Hughes

I loved my friend.
He went away from me.
There's nothing more to say.
The poem ends,
Soft as it began-
I loved my friend.

Big Boy Underwear

Jacob wore them today! Well, sort of. He wore them on the outside of his pants. All day in the house. When we went out I convinced him to wear them over his diaper and under his pants.

It's a start, right?


Saturday, January 07, 2006

Frustrated With Social Security

I honestly think they have no idea what's going on in their office. I just got a letter today saying that they've been overpaying me for the boys, and are decreasing what I get each month by a lot. I need that money to pay for daycare so I can work and have health insurance and pay my mortgage!

The thing that gets me is I've received prob. 3 letters in the past year stating that I was underpaid and increasing what I get. Now they're taking away all the increases plus more. I will be getting far less than I started with! And there's no explanation in the letter. I have 30 days to have a lawyer contact them if I'd like to fight their decision.

So messed up.

After Joe died, while I was still pregnant with Josh, my sister (or mother?) spoke with someone from S.S. to find out about benefits for my kids. And the rep. said that Josh would be ineligible for benefits because I couldn't prove that Joe was his father. I would have to get a certified letter from Joe's parents stating that Josh was indeed Joe's son. Huh?

Anyone work for S.S. that would like to explain this nonsense to me?


Friday, January 06, 2006


It's 12:10 AM and I just got home. The date was great. He picked me up (despite some protests from you) and opened the car door for me all three times we got in it. (He drives a BMW SUV, by the way) We were given the most romantic table in the restaurant. It was in an alcove by the window, looking out at everyone. The food was amazing. We had sizzling shrimp, a beef dish, asparagus, portabello mushrooms, roasted peppers, and a fritatta with potatoes. We each had a glass of wine, then shared a pitcher of sangria.

Converastion was very easy, and we laughed an awful lot. There were no awkward moments.

We then went to the improv show. It was hilarious.

I'm tired so will post more tomorrow, but all in all, an amazing date.

But I will add that he wouldn't let me pay for anything, and he just emailed me and said he can't wait to see me again.



Thursday, January 05, 2006

My Date Plan

Date just called, and he has actually made a real plan for tomorrow night. After a bit of discussion, I agreed to let him pick me up (Mel, don't freak out). We're going to eat at Dali http://www.dalirestaurant.com/menu-tapas.html in Somerville. It's a tapas (when he first asked if I like tapas, I thought he asked if I liked topless. Took me a few seconds to realize what he had said!) restaurant that I've always wanted to eat at, and have heard really good things about. But parking can be a little tricky there, which is partially why I would rather not drive. J, how should I get us to the restaurant from here?

The other reason I'd rather not drive, is because after dinner, we're going to Boston Improv at 10PM! It'll be a late night, but I'll try to post when I get home. I'm pretty impressed that he made such big plans for us. Hopefully the drive won't be awkward. ANd hopefully we'll really like spending time together. And hopefully I can find something to wear!!!!

I'm excited. Wish me luck!

Rambling Muse

I guess I've become addicted to your blog. Tonight I haven't been able to get on it and I'm having withdrawal symptoms. Everything ok?


Wednesday, January 04, 2006

I have a date!

With a really great sounding guy. We just talked for 2 hours! Ok, we IM'd for 2 hours, but that counts, right? He and I actually have quite a bit in common. He's going a way for 2 weeks for work on Sat. So he asked me if I was free Friday night. And of course, I am! So friday night date with cute guy.

And while he's from Seattle, we discovered that his first cousin used to be one of my closest friends (in jr. high). So I asked him if he attended her bat-mitzvah, and he said of course he did. So I told him that we've already had a first date. I'm so funny, I know.

Now, what to wear?

The Rambling Muse posted this on her blog in my honor. I really love it. I had to read it a few times for the full meaning to sink in. Thanks so much, RM!

Have Patience....

...Have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language.
Don't search for the answers which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them and the point is to live everything.
Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.

- Rilke


Tuesday, January 03, 2006


I'm not really sure what's going on with me tonight, but I'm feeling more anxious than I have in quite some time. Maybe it's the anticipation of going back to work after so long off. Maybe it's the idea of moving to NY. Maybe it's the idea that I want to do something other than teach, but I really have no idea what that would be. I guess it's all of those things. I hate the unknown, and my future right now just seems so questionable. I would like to feel settled and happy. Does anyone feel that way? I wonder if that's an unachievable goal.

I Was Wrong

We don't have school today! Yay snow days!!!!!

Monday, January 02, 2006

Where The F**k is My Book?

I need a new book to read to my students for our daily read aloud. I like to read a chapter a day after lunch and we finished our last book (Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIHM) before vacation. Since I taught this class last year, I am out of new books. Last night I went to Barnes and Noble and found a great book of short stories written by Avi.

I read the half the book last night and the other half this afternoon. I loved every story in the book, and could picture the look of suspense on my students' faces as I read the stories to them.

I just got home from widow group, and wanted to put the book with my purse so that I'd remember it in the morning. Aren't you proud of me?

But guess what? The book is nowhere to be found. I just spent 15 minutes searching my house, and cannot find it anywhere. WTF?????? The medium told me that Joe likes to hide things on me for fun, but I know that this type of thing happens to everyone, so I'm trying not to look to deeply into it.

But seriously, I am really annoyed right now. I'll be pissed if I have to go to school tomorrow (and by the way, there will be school, no snow day, I am sure) with no new read aloud.

Where is it?

Update On Book

I found it. On the ottoman. That I had opened to look inside. It was sitting on top. I know it wasn't there before.

Slightly freaked out now.


Sunday, January 01, 2006

New York State of Mind

I love visiting my sister and her family in NY. We got here yesterday, and have just had a really nice time together. My sister made an amazing dinner for New Year's Eve. Here's what was on the menu:
cheese (5 different kinds?) and crackers
homemade (ridiculously amazing) artichoke dip with french bread
assorted meats
assorted veggies

Main meal
prime rib
mashed potatoes
roasted mushrooms
homemade rolls

tropical fruit trifle

Grey Goose vodka and grapefruit juice

There were 8 adults and 6 children, but my two were asleep before everyone got here. Everyone left at around 10:30, and Becca went right to bed. I tried going to bed then too, but my brother-in-law refused to let me. Literally refused. He turned on the lights and insisted that we watch TV and talk until midnight. At 11:50 I heard my sister calling him. I said, "Thank god, go be with your wife for midnight." He turned off the lights, and TV, and headed upstairs. But unfortunately he headed right back down. My sister had a headache and needed tylenol. Lights and TV were back on.

Don't really know what to say about Dick Clark. I was drunk so I told my brother-in-law that he sounded like a drunk retard. Not words I would typically use to describe someone, but pretty accurate unfortunately. His speech was completely slurred, and the content made no sense. Even his countdown was off. Pretty sad.

When I'm here, I'm so tempted to move here. My sister really wants us to, and is always asking me to.

Reasons to move here:
1. My sister
2. My nephew
3. My brother-in-law
Those 3 reasons are really equivalent to about 10 reasons, because they are so important to our lives. It's so nice having my kids around them.

Reasons not to move here:
1. My Friends
2. My job
3. My house
4. My neighborhood
5. Joe's buried here
6. My mom
7. My daycare provider
8. My widow support group
Can't imagine leaving any of them.


5 Weird Things...

...about me (Courtesy of Slacker Mom's tag)

1. I am terrified of car washes, but go through them because I like my car to be clean.

2. I have a terrible habit of washing clothes and then never switching them to the dryer. I then have to rewash before I can dry. Sometimes this will happen 4 times before finally making it to the dryer.

3. I am terrified of driving during a snow storm.

4. I plan out what I'm going to have for dinner when I wake up in the morning.

5. I saw Dirty Dancing 10 times in the movie theatre (I was 12) and never once knew that abortion was at all in the movie.