Thursday, February 28, 2008

Damn You, Brett

You jinxed me
The kitchen would have gone off without a hitch
had you not commented
now my cabinet walls need to be removed for the counters to go out/in
and the tiles for the floor may be too thick to fit under the dishwasher
so it is all on hold
until everything is sorted out

Maybe it's because of my new bras
but I can't stop smiling today
despite these setbacks


Wednesday, February 27, 2008

My Mom

I had a really nice time with her tonight
not just because she bought me new bras
(I was wearing one cup size too small btw)
but because she was really fun to be with
and she gave me some good advice
I really love her tonight


Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Birthday Present

Tomorrow I will be visiting this store
for my birthday bra fitting from my mom
We were supposed to go last week
but with Brooklyn in the ER
it somehow seemed wrong to go
I'm so very curious to see what my true size is
I would let you make predictions
but that seems wrong as well


p.s. I ordered my new kitchen today! I took all of your advice into account. It will be completed by the end of March!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Inspiring Day

I had the most incredible day today
I spent the entire day surrounded by other writers
I was able to get so much writing done
I even got up the nerve to
read an excerpt from my book
during the open mike session
I was shaking I was so nervous
but it was really well received
I left so inspired to write more
and I'm very tempted to sign up for this
weekend workshop
Doesn't it look amazing?


p.s. Gina, I had such a great time with you yesterday. I promise I will come up to Maine this summer.

Friday, February 22, 2008


I feel like I owe you some updates, so this post will be about nothing and everything.

She is doing fine. She was definitely out of it her first night home. She didn't bark for over 12 hours, which is really odd for her. Yesterday morning T was freaking out that she had lost her ability to bark. I, on the other hand, thought this was a fabulous side effect to having been beaten on the head. T did everything in his power to get her to bark, and of course, once she started, she hasn't stopped. "Ah, she's back to being our dog," T keeps saying. I just roll my eyes.

My Birthday
It was lovely. T did everything right this year, from having chocolates for me when I woke up, to sending me gorgeous flowers to my job. Dinner was great, and my presents were fun. I really can't share them with you because one will make him sound like a selfish bastard, and the other will make him sound like a pervert. But I love both presents, and we've had a fun week with them.

My Kitchen
Thank you for your help with the counter selection. I really would have picked the first granite if I didn't have your negative reactions! I think we're going with the second choice, as well as the backsplash. We also decided to change the floor while we're at it. Any suggestions for a great looking, dirt hiding floor? And decorator ub mom, I will keep in mind your cabinet comment. My sister has said the same thing to me before. Sometimes it takes me a while to make a change. (Hence the ugly counter tops for the past ten years!)

My Vacation
This week was school vacation, and it was a fabulous one. I worked out 4 out of the five days. I went to the new Institute of Contemporary Art with JRowe on Monday. I had time to myself throughout the week, and spent some good time with the boys. I'm super excited for the next two days.

Tomorrow, my friend Gina from Maine is coming down, I haven;t seen her since Joe died, and am so happy that we're going to spend a day together.

On Sunday I'm going to an all day writing workshop through a writing group in Boston. I'm going to have an entire day to write! What could be better? Oh, wait! I know the answer to that! On Sunday night the Academy Awards are on! Who do you think will win?


Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Post Interrupted

I was starting to post a picture of option two for counters
I got this far

when I got a phone call from Brooklyn's pet walker
While Brooklyn was at playgroup in a park
some nutjob guy walked up to her with a metal bar
and started hitting her in the head!
he knocked her unconscious
and the dog walker rushed her to the pet ER
She has since woken up, but had convulsions
when she first came to
she has been there all afternoon
but will hopefully be coming home tonight
The nutjob is on the run,
but the police are looking for him.
Poor Brookie.


p.s. what do you think of the counter?

p.p.s. I don't think either one are showing accurately on the blog.

p.p.p.s. I really love this one.

p.p.p.p.s. I may not be able to afford it now that I have to pay for the ER.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Please Vote

Since I value your opinions so greatly
I would love for you to weigh in on
my new kitchen counters

I found one that I love
Tell me your thoughts

This is my current laminate counter top
It is ugly and outdated
This is the granite that I picked out
What do you think? Be honest, b/c I need to pick something good for resale,
as we don't plan on staying here more than a few more years.
a view from afar
the color of my dining room is the same
as the color in the kitchen

The colored diamonds would be in the stone, not sticking out
and the stone would be 4x4 not 1x1


Friday, February 15, 2008

A Letter To Joe On His Birthday

Dear Joe,

Tomorrow you would have turned 35 years old. It still seems crazy to me that I am now two years older than you ever got the chance to be.

Tomorrow the boys and I will visit you at the cemetery. We will bring cards and gummy bears. We would bring a cake, but you never were a fan of traditional desserts. You much preferred a giant bag of sour patch kids to a thick slice of chocolate cake. Joshua takes after you in that regard. I've even introduced him to your favorite of all foods, the cheesy poof.

I've shared with both boys your master plan to write a book on cheese puffs (cheesy poofs as you called them.) Remember that plan? You were going to drive across the country and sample each states version of the cheese puff. Of course you never would have actually done it, but you made me laugh every single time you shared your master plan. The boys love hearing the plan as well.

They still talk about you all the time. Do you hear them? They want to know where you are, when you're coming back, how you can see them, when they will get to see you, but mostly they want to know who you were.

I tell them the craziest stories I can come up with. When we go to visit Becca in NYC we always share with the boys your eating tour of her street. "First daddy got a slice of pizza, then he got a glazed donut, then he ate fried chicken, then he had a terrible belly ache." They love that story.

If you can see the boys you know that Jacob looks just like you. It's evident in every pore of his being that you are his father. He still loves to hear the song you sang to him as a baby, and you would be super proud of his burping abilities.

Your boys are smart, funny and curious. All qualities they get from you. They miss you terribly and would love nothing more than to share some cheesy poofs with you.

If you can see me, you know that I'm happy, and in a good place. I have no doubt that you'd want anything less for me. While some may have issues with the fact that I am in love with someone new and claim to still love and miss you, I know you get it.

If you see us tomorrow, give us a little shout out. Let us smell a cigar burning, or see something super cool.

You are missed. You are loved. And you always will be.


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Turning 30

I have decided for my 33rd birthday, to share with you an excerpt from my book. The book is about dating after being widowed. Most chapters are about various disasters that I dated; each time hoping that HE was the one. This chapter has nothing to do with dating, and everything to do with those who were there for me after Joe died. If you read it, (it's long for a blog entry!) please let me know.

A week after Joe died, I remember saying to my best friend, Melanie, “What about my birthday?”

My birthday falls on Valentine’s Day, and it’s a day I take seriously. I always thought Joe got out easy, as he only had one day per year to pamper me, while most men had two separate days.

Melanie had looked at me with confusion in her eyes.

“Your birthday? I’m not sure what you mean,” she said, in a tone that was clearly trying to not upset me.

“Who will celebrate my birthday with me? I’m turning 30 next year, and my husband is dead.”

“Sweetie,” Mel began, “Your birthday is nine months away. Let’s try to focus on today, and we’ll worry about your birthday when it gets closer.”

I tried to follow her advice, but my birthday has stayed in the back of my head all of these months. As it turns out, it’s falling on a Monday night, the same night as my widow support group meeting. I’m sure they will present me with a cake, and I’ll probably get the longest amount of time to speak about how depressed I am.

Never in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine that my 30th birthday would be spent in a widow support group, surrounded by 12 crying women, all saddened by the fact that they too, lost their husbands way too soon, and are alone on Valentine’s Day.

The week leading up to my birthday I get a call from my mother.

“Betsy, I’ve been thinking, why don’t you and the boys come into Boston for the weekend? Scott (my step-father) and I will take you to Jae’s for dinner on Friday night. And we can go shopping on Saturday.”

Considering that I have no other plans, and dinner at one of my favorite restaurant along with shopping can’t be bad things, I agree to come over Friday after work.

Friday afternoon I hastily throw some old clothes in a bag for myself, pack up enough diapers, wipes, formula and clothes for the boys, pack everything on my minivan, and drive the 15 minutes into Boston.

Earlier in the week we had been hit with a snowstorm, and I’m surprised to see how much snow is still in Boston. My parents live in a townhouse in the South End, and while it comes with a parking spot behind the house, the only way to get into the parking spot is to navigate down the most narrow, potholed filled alley in all of Boston. Add snow to that alley, and a giant Nissan Quest, and you have a parking nightmare.

My car gets stuck as soon as I turn into the alley. I try to back up, and accidentally hit the fence that abuts the alley. Tears come pouring out of my eyes. I am so mad and sad and frustrated that this is what my life has become. Joe should be here to help me navigate my car. He should be here to help me navigate my life. I take some calming breaths, turn my steering wheel hard, and put my foot as far down on the gas as it will go. My car skids down to my parents’ parking spot, where mercifully, my stepfather stands waiting to take over the parking duties for me.

I bring the boys and all of our gear inside, and ask my mom if we can just get take out instead of going out. I’m tired, and cranky, and frankly, the last thing I want to do is go out.
She tells me that she already got a babysitter and a reservation, and that it will feel good to get out. Realizing that I will never win an argument against her, I go into the bathroom to pee, and do a double take when I see my reflection in the mirror. After having Josh in July, I have easily added ten pounds to my post pregnancy weight. My chords and sweater are far from fashionable, but are the only clean clothing that fit me. My curly hair looks greasy and dirty. My eyes have lines that I’ve never noticed before. So this is me at 30. How the fuck did I get here?

I give the boys kisses goodnight, tell the babysitter how to put them to bed, and walk out the front door with my parents. Jae’s is on the corner of my parents’ street, which is good, because the night is freezing, and I’m feeling exhausted. I just want to get the dinner over with so I can go to sleep.

Looking through the window of Jae’s I can see a few couples sitting with candles on their tables, wine glasses clinking, toasts to happy times. Jealousy fills my every pore.
The host walks us downstairs toward the bar area. I can see as we are walking down that it’s filled with young singles, gathering for drinks after work. The last thing I want to deal with is obnoxious drunk people. I tap the host on the shoulder, trying to get his attention. I want to sit upstairs where it’s quiet. Even if I have to sit with happy couples, it seems better than sitting with noisy drunks.

The host ignores my taps and continues walking down the stairs. Suddenly the room becomes silent, and I feel like everyone’s eyes have turned towards me. I’m wondering if my fly is down, or if my sneakers are that horrendous. Then I recognize my sister. Rebecca is here from New York? Wait, isn’t that Melanie? As my eyes begin to focus I realize that I know everyone in the basement. Suddenly I hear, “SURPRISE!” Wait? This is for me! This is a surprise party for me?
I look around the room. Not only is my sister here from New York, my brother and his wife are here from New Hampshire, half of the teachers I work with are here, two of my widow group friends are here, three friends from high school, and two neighbors are here.

“I can’t believe this,” I say over and over again. The tables are overflowing with food, colorful drinks are in everyone’s hands, and a huge pile of presents sit on a table behind me.

“You only turn 30 once,” my sister says. “We knew we had to do something big. This isn’t all though.”

“What do you mean?” I ask.

“After the party, you and I are going to the Four Seasons Hotel for a spa weekend. Jacob and Josh are staying with Mom and Scott. We are getting facials, massages, and manicures. And we’re eating dinner at the restaurant in The Four Seasons.”

“Shut UP!” I scream.

After countless drinks, platters of sushi and pad Thai, and a chocolate cake that will likely add five more pounds to my body, I get to open presents.

Joe was a wonderful husband in many ways, but one are he lacked in, was buying presents for me. Every year I would hold out hope that this year he would come through with a good present, maybe jewelry, or a trip. Every year I would end up horribly disappointed. One birthday my present was wooden hangers. No joke, wooden hangers for my birthday. Another year I received a coffee grinder and whole coffee beans, while knowing full well how much I despised making coffee.

To see a pile of presents in front of me was just as exciting as the prospect of a spa weekend. Most of my presents are items my friends knew I wanted: TIVO for my television, along with a year of service, a subscription to People Magazine for a year, new pajamas. With each new present I open there is hooting and hollering. When I get to the present from my brother, everyone gets quiet, like they know that his present is a serious one.

There are two packages, a big one and a small one. I open the big one first. Inside the wrapping paper is a framed, black and white portrait that my brother took of Joe and me when I was pregnant with Jacob. I’m sitting on Joe’s lap, and he has his hands lovingly on my belly. We both have these huge smiles on our faces, like we can’t believe we are really going to be parents. My brother is notorious for taking pictures and never developing them, so I had forgotten all about posing for him two years before.

I look around the table at my friends who had all been laughing and hollering minutes before. Most have tears coming down their cheeks. I instinctively touch my own cheeks and feel wetness on them as well. God I miss Joe.

I slowly open the second present in my hand, and gasp audibly when I see what it is. My brother has framed his Red Sox ticket from July 17, 1990. That was the day Joe and I met. I was 15 Joe was 17. We were both standing in line to take the ferry to George’s Island in Boston. One of my friends, Anna, was over heated. She said she was going to pass out. I knew that she needed a drink. I looked around and saw a cute boy holding a soda. I took it out of his hand while promising to buy him a new one on the ferry. A relationship was born.

My friends and I brought Joe and his friend home with us, and Joe ended up staying at my house until very late that night. My brother came home around 11, after having attended the Red Sox game. Joe asked him if he could borrow his ticket to show his mother. My brother agreed. Joe called his mother and told her that he had won free tickets to the Red Sox game, and that’s why he was so late, put the ticket in his wallet, and left. I was unaware that Joe returned the ticket to my brother, but apparently he had, and for some reason Jonathan felt the need to save it.

Seeing the ticket, and all that the ticket represents, framed with such love, brings out such a strong emotion in me I can’t help but sob. I look around the room and everyone, including Anna, and my brother are sobbing too. Everyone here loved Joe. Everyone misses him too.

We all manage to pull ourselves together and start saying goodbyes. Despite the ending, everyone has had a great time. My mother and sister threw me the best birthday party I’ve ever had, and I still have a spa weekend ahead of me.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

My Birthday

It's coming up again
In fact it will be here in two days

If you have been reading for a while
you may remember that the past two birthdays
have not gone so well

Last year T was away for work
and just didn't seem to understand
that the day needed acknowledgment
since we were celebrating that weekend

But that was nothing compared to
the year before
when I was stood up
by the loser that I was dating

This year should be better
T and I are going out to my favorite restaurant on Friday
because he is teaching a class Thursday night

But he has promised me
that I will love my birthday
this year

We shall see....

p.s. three years ago I had a wonderful birthday. I will share that story on Thursday.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Wacky Weather

When I was a kid, my father used to tell me a story about the time he went to Revere Beach as a child. (Revere Beach is North of Boston, and was once considered a nice place to summer. It has since gone downhill.)

His family unpacked their car on a sunny morning, and set up their beach blanket, and beach chairs. Out of nowhere the sky turned gray, and it began to downpour. They packed everything up, and hurried into their car.

Within minutes the sun came back out and there wasn't a cloud to be seen. They unpacked back on the beach and headed towards the water. But then the sky clouded over again, and it started to snow! (Yes, this was a tall tale, but I enjoyed hearing it as a child.)

They ran back to their car for shelter, but by the time they got there the sun was back out again. Perplexed, my father asked his parents what was going on.

"Son," my grandfather said to my father, "Welcome to weather in New England."

Never has that sentiment rung more true than today. Every five minutes there was a different extreme of weather. From sunny to snowing, to thunderstorms, to blizzard like conditions, to sunny again. It was nuts.

I think I'll call my grandfather in sunny Florida and tell him that today feels like a day at Revere Beach.


Friday, February 08, 2008

Here is a fun website
Check it out and share the # 1 song on the day you were born
Then post the #1 song the day your children were born
My how times have changed


Thursday, February 07, 2008

They have the flu
They are at risk of developing pneumonia
so they need to be watched closely
this week sucks

Guess Who's Home From School?

All of us!
(That's fake excitement)

Yes, We made it until 10:00
and then the dreaded phone call came
they both have fevers
they both have droopy eyes
they are both lethargic
come and get your kids
This sucks

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Guess Who's Going To School Tomorrow?



Tuesday, February 05, 2008

And this is after a day on antibiotics

They both have the exact same temp, 102.7
poor guys
neither will nap!
what's up with that?
At least they are getting preschool lessons from noggin.


Monday, February 04, 2008


Here are J & J at 2:18 today

Can they go to school tomorrow? Please?


What Were You Doing At 4AM?

I was giving Jacob his second bath of the night
Poor guy had a fever close to 104
and was burning to touch
Motrin and a cool bath
seemed to help
but I spent the rest of
the night with him
in his twin bed

He had awakened at 1, 2, and 3
so my sleep was pretty much shot anyways
Joshua is also just as sick
but for some reason
he acts like he is fine
no matter what his temp

I said to my sister last night
"Josh takes being sick like a man"
she said back
"You mean he takes it like a woman?"
She was right, men are the worst when they are sick

Can you tell I've had no sleep?
This post seems silly
yet my kids are super sick
Hopefully the doctor will give them both meds
any chances they will be back in school tomorrow?
(Only answer that if you think the answer is yes)


Sunday, February 03, 2008


Somehow we lost the Super Bowl
Hopefully we can still win Super Tuesday
Do your part and vote

Not sure who to vote for?
Take this test
To help you decide

Perfect Date

Did the straight hair make the difference?
Was it the amazing boyfriend?
Maybe it was the fabulous meal
Perhaps it was the fun show
Could it be the fun we had once we got home?
All I know is last night was perfect
absolutely perfect