Friday, June 08, 2012

Going, going, almost gone...

After living in our home for 29 years, raising our two sons and several dogs we've decided to sell our house.
We've thought about it off and on for the last several years but when push came to shove I couldn't do it. Too many memories, this is the only house my children have ever known. I remember years ago when my parents moved out of my childhood home; I hated that. It was a sad day and I didn't even live at home anymore. 

 Hubby and I were married just a year when we bought this house. We've cycled through countless remodels and paint jobs over the years. Hubby is very handy and has put down three tile floors, one hardwood floor and installed carpet. He's replaced our bathtub, toilets, done a glass tile back splash, built a beautiful oak banister going upstairs so there's a lot of sweat equity here.

The tipping point finally came now that my knees are getting pretty bad. Every where you go in our house you  have to climb stairs. That and I've realized that your house is just a place to live in, no matter where you are if you're with someone you love its home.

We aren't moving far, maybe 15 minutes away into a new subdivision. The new place will be just a little smaller but will have everything I want once its built; a bathroom off the master bedroom, one level, first floor laundry, open floor plan and what Hubby is most excited about, a two car garage.

Our current house is almost sold, waiting on their banks appraisal and mortgage commitment. We can't put the shovel in the ground until that happens. The buyers want to close at the end of July and our new place won't be ready. We'll be living with my parents for about 2-3 months.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Real World

My recent college graduate got a job!
And a new wardrobe. 
 He starts Tuesday as a paralegal at a law firm in downtown Rochester.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Class of 2012

Tis the season all over the country for high school and college graduations. Our youngest son Cameron graduated from college last week end cum laude with a degree in English. The ceremony was held outside and the weather couldn't have been better; warm and sunny with a nice breeze. They told the students to dress comfortably for the weather and he did; t shirt, shorts and sneakers.
A boy and his dog on the day he left home for his freshman year in college.
Four years later; a man and his dog.
Four years ago he fell asleep at his brothers college graduation. Four years later his brother stayed awake but played scramble with some friends. Not that he was the only one, Cameron played a few games of it with his cousin during the ceremony while names were being read and students were walking.

Sniffle, sniff during Pomp and Circumstance.

I can hardly believe that I am the mother of two college graduates. How time flies!

And now a message to all graduates about spell check; it doesn't catch all mistakes. I've experienced that several times but the most memorable had to be when I sent a note home to the parents of my kindergartners. What should have been a simple note turned embarrassing. I wanted to  use the word inconvenience and I spelled it wrong. Relying on spell check I just clicked on the first word that came up. Here was my  sentence -  "I'm sorry for any incontinence this may have caused".   That pales in comparison to the spelling blunder made by the University of Texas.

Can you spot the spelling error that I'm positive didn't come up during spell check.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012


Some people will fore go planting the very fragrant and beautiful peony in their garden because they attract ants.

It's true; they do attract ants but only for a short while. While in the bud stage the peony secrets a sweet sap or nectar that the ants love to dine on.
Once the flower has bloomed the ants hit the road. If by chance you still have a few in the flower and you'd like to cut it for inside just shake the flower or dip the flower in a buck of water and the ants will swim out.

It's a myth that peonies need ants to bloom, not true, they'll bloom with or without the ants. Most of the time where you find peonies you'll find ants enjoying a sweet little snack.

Friday, May 04, 2012

This is the remains of Captain Bruce K. Clark who was killed in Afghanistan this week arriving at Dover Air Force Base. He was skyping with his wife on Tuesday, May 1 when he was shot and killed. Yes, I said while they were video chatting.
I found out these details on Tuesday morning although the general public found out 3 days later. Why was the Army so slow in reporting this? How did I know? The parent of one of my kindergartners. She arrived late to pick up her daughter at 11:30 hysterical after having just talked to her sister in Texas. Captain Clark was married to her sister and is my student's uncle.  No other information has been released at this time. I spoke with the parent today and the Army is still investigating.

Such a sad sad story as any soldier's death is but how many of us would want to witness their loved one's murder. I say murder because what else can it be? Friendly fire? Someone cleaning their gun? I just feel so bad for this man and his family left behind.

Thursday, April 12, 2012


While my son was here with his girlfriend we took them to the George Eastman House. That name may sound familiar to you because he was the founder of Eastman Kodak right here in my home town of Rochester, New York. 

A little history lesson; Eastman decided to go on a trip and wanted to take pictures but was put off by all the equipment and work it took to actually take them. He was a tinkerer and eventually in 1884 Eastman invented and patented the first film in roll form. Four years later he introduced the first roll film camera and used the slogan "You push the button, we do the rest."  In 1892 Eastman Kodak Company was created and photography for the masses was available. After taking your photos and the film was used up you mailed it to the company in Rochester NY where the pictures would be developed, printed and returned to you along with new roll of film. I can remember doing this as late as the 1970's before drugstores offered the service.

A huge advancement in the venture of photography was the invention of flexible transparent film devised and manufactured by Eastman Kodak. This film was used by Eastman's friend Thomas Edison in his early trials of the motion picture camera and eventually used to film movies.

George Eastman was a very successful inventor and businessman despite dropping out of school at age 15 to help support his family. His father died of a brain illness when he was 7 and later one of his sisters died of polio. In the last years of his own life he suffered from spinal stinosis. Durning Eastman's lifetime he was a quiet philanthropist and donated over 100 million dollars, mostly under the alias of Mr. Smith  to organizations promoting good health and higher education. Eastman realized the value of a good education and his largest donations went to the University of Rochester, Rochester Institute of Technology, Massachusetts Institution of Technology, Tuskegee Institute, Hampton Institute, Rochester Dental Dispensary, and several European dental clinics. He loved music but couldn't play an instrument and established the Eastman School of Music one of the top music schools in the United States.

On March 14, 1932 at age 74 George Eastman met with several people to go over his will and wishes and later that day committed suicide. His suicide note was short and to the point, "To my friends, My work is done, why wait".

Still with me? 
Let's go on a tour of The Eastman House.

Camera marketed to children.
This is a three strip technicolor camera from 1932. Gone With The Wind and The Wizard of Oz were filmed on this kind of camera. The Eastman House has the negatives from these films in their archive vault.
Drive in movie camera 1950
Beautiful sideboard and silver tea service.
The dinning room.
Ellen and Kevin and the elephant in the room.
A raccoon fur rug over the couch.
A chest given to Eastman by 
Tsar Nicholas II of Russia.
Eastman was a small and large game hunter and killed this elephant while on one of several trips to Africa as well as a rhino. In his later years he "shot" his animals with a camera.
Part of the library. The object in the lower right is a wastebasket made out of an elephant foot. Below is the living room with a Steinway piano that Eastman couldn't play.
The grand staircase.
The spindles were modeled after three kinds of nautical rope.
Here we are with the conservatory below us.
Mr. Eastman loved his mother dearly and took the best care possible of her. He would try to shower her with luxuries but she was a simple woman. She lived with him her entire life.

Below is his camping equipment used during his safaris.
 Free cameras!

His final act.

One last fact; the word Kodak doesn't mean a thing. Mr. Eastman wanted a word that sounded unique  and would be remembered so he made it up.

Today as the saying goes, George Eastman must be rolling in his grave. Kodak has been hit by very hard times and has filed for bankruptcy. They were once a huge part of Rochester employment scene but fell victim to the digital age. Maybe they were in denial about the demise of film photography and tried to do to little too late. Eastman's legacy is tarnished but his philantropic endeavors live on.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

FB va Blog

Has Facebook killed my blog? I think it might have; I spend much more time on FB interacting with people. Or maybe I'm just getting lazy. Maybe it's because on Facebook people comment, I don't know. I'll try and post more here but no promises. I don't think anyone notices.

Right now I'm on spring break from school and enjoying the respite from my kindergartners.

My son is home for a few days from New York  City. He brought his girlfriend of a year with him so we finally met her. She lives in California and every month one of them travels to the other. I asked him  why in a city the size of New York he couldn't find a girl there. Now I know, she's very sweet and she loves my son so that's what counts. The long distant relationship may come to a halt because she might move to NYC and in with him. People ask how I feel about that; I'm all for it. They're obviously pretty crazy about each other for her to give up her job, family and friends and move 3,000 miles away. What I like about it is that now when they see each other it's all wine and roses but living together will be the true test. Will she be able to put up with my son's moods and vice versa? We'll find out.

I'm just happy to meet her. Kevin sees her parents every time he goes to California along with her siblings and little nephew. He flew to Cali a few weeks ago just for the weekend for the baby's first birthday. He's called Uncle Kevin.  I was so jealous. Soon I will see her every time I see Kevin.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

It seems like I'm not doing much blogging lately and when I do it's usually about something that has pissed me off.

Today's rant is brought to you by this bumper sticker.

Who would put this on their car??
Are we going backwards in race relations?
Hell, I'm not black and I'm offended.
How is this supposed to be taken?

According to Paula Smith the owner of the site where you could (I say could because she's taken it off the site) purchase this says it's not racist. Smith says, "I do find it amazing and entertaining that one of our stickers has become a racist thing". She goes on to say that, "Obama's not even black but rather a mixture of race". Who cares! You've inferred the word nigger. Of course it's just a word but one that has polarized people in this country. Just the sound of it isn't nice. Growing up I don't think I ever heard that word uttered in our house. Today if someone of another race uses that word all hell breaks loose but here in lies the problem; many black people use it in their vernacular when speaking to each other. That word will never die until it's taboo for everyone. I don't get how it's okay for blacks to call each other that.

But back to Ms Smith.

Does she think we're all stupid and buy into her cry of "it's not racist"? First of all if she meant to use the word renege she would have spelled it the right way. defines the word renege as to go back on one's word: He has reneged on his promise.

Webster's defines it as: to go back on a promise or commitment

What other way could she have meant this bumper sticker to mean by spelling it re-nig? Honestly who would find this acceptable? Uneducated red necks? Or maybe the far right AM radio talk show hosts? Now in defense of Ms. Smith I don't know if she created the bumper sticker or just decided to sell it on her site but I can't help but feel by doing so puts her view out there. I guess never argue with an idiot; they'll win by experience.

I swear sometimes civilization as we know it is crumbling. People need to get along, treat each other with due respect and realize that unless you come from a galaxy far, far away, we're all one race; the Human Race.

I agree with the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights:

Amendment 1 - Freedom of Religion, Press, Expression. Ratified 12/15/1791. Note

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

I wish people everywhere had this freedom, we're very lucky in this country.

But just because you have the freedom to say something doesn't always mean you should say it.

Stay classy Paula Smith.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Here Comes The Sun

We've been having some wonderful weather lately with temperatures averaging anywhere from 20 -40 degrees above normal.

There's daffodils in bloom, some trees starting to bud and it's very tempting to bring out the patio furniture but in the back of my mind I know it's way too early for this to be happening in these here parts of world. I can't help but wonder how we're going to pay for this later. We've had blizzards in March.

In the mean time we're all enjoying the warmth and sunshine so...
Happy Spring!

Saturday, March 03, 2012

Shit for Brains

Let me first say that I think Rush Limbaugh is a low life slug, an idiot, hurtful and cruel. His latest slam toward Sandra Fluke and the birth control issue is disgusting. The entire debate on whether birth control should be covered by insurance is stupid; of course it should be. Plus should men be the deciding factor in this? The Republican hearing on this didn't allow any women to participate. Did you ever notice that the loudest voices in the anti abortion issue are usually men. And let's not forget clinic bombings, done almost exclusively by men. (While I wouldn't have an abortion I am pro choice ) But isn't it the man who gets the woman pregnant? Where are these men who abandon their children? Who don't pay child support? Look at the amount of single mothers out there? Where are the fathers? Yet some Republicans would like you to believe that contraception should not be covered and in Limbaugh's little mind if you use the pill you are a slut. I'm guessing if contraception was more readily available there would be less abortions. Of course the women have to take responsibility also. If you don't want to get pregnant take your pills everyday. I say keep the government out of your sex lives. It's personal.

I do feel for the men who get their partner pregnant and want the baby and the women does not. That would be heart breaking and a tough one but in the end it's the woman's body and her right to choose.

If men want to continue to have sex then the women should have their birth control covered by insurance. After all many insurance companies cover the cost of Viagra. I bet Rush Limbaugh's Viagra is covered.

Once again Limbaugh has crossed the line with his crassness and bullying. I don't understand how people can follow him and agree with him no less. I hope this time he's shot himself in the foot. Check out this video of Rachel Maddow. It's a little long but worth the watch. I couldn't agree with her more.

The only good thing I can say about Limbaugh is thank God he doesn't have any children.

After days of bashing Ms. Fluke, Limbaugh has offered up a left handed or backwards apology for his words. I say too little too late. I hope that more companies stop advertising on his show.

Edit #2:
Limbaugh has lost another sponsor of his show, this makes 7. As far as his apology goes, did he apologize for what he said or because he is losing sponsors.