Reason #128 why it's nice to have Fred home again: I don't have to be the driver on long trips! I am back to my role as navigator, CD-switcher, snack finder, small-talk maker, and knitter, and it feels really, really good.
I was a little worried about the weather when we set out for North Carolina last Wednesday. There was a chance that we might hit some snow or other winter ickiness late in the afternoon, but we got lucky and made it to Fred's parents' house without incident.
The weather Thursday morning was gorgeous. We went outside with Fred's brother James and his family to take some pictures. I got some really cute shots of Fred with James and Meredith's new baby, Benjamin. I couldn't choose which one to blog, so here they all are:
What a couple of hotties!
Annabelle remembered to bring along a beaded headband that had belonged to her great-grandmother Belle Taylor when she was a young girl and a member of some organization with an Indian theme. It seemed a fitting accessory for Thanksgiving day:
We decided to make things easy on all of us and go out for Thanksgiving dinner at the Nu Wray Inn. Excellent idea! Because we weren't wrapped up in preparing a huge meal, we were able to spend the morning just relaxing and enjoying being together. At precisely 3 p.m., we gathered around the table for a feast that none of us had had to cook (or, more importantly, would have to clean up!):
We enjoyed the performance by the traditional Thanksgiving Elvis impersonator. He gave teddy bears to the little kids when he sang "I Just Want To Be Your Teddy Bear." As we were leaving, I snapped a picture of Mike and Annabelle with Elvis:
During the meal, I got a couple of cute shots of Benjamin and his big brother Sanders:
We all got wasted and took off our pants and wore them like hats:
(OK, I'm lying. That was really just Sanders being silly when Benjamin got too hot in his corduroy pants.)
As we were leaving the inn, all 4 cousins (plus Sanders' new teddy bear named . . . ready for this? . . . Elvis) gathered together for a group shot:
We went home to a clean kitchen, for which we were all indeed quite thankful!
We're taking off early tomorrow morning and heading east to North Carolina to visit Fred's parents for Thanksgiving. Fred's brother James will be there with his family, and we're all looking forward to a chance to visit. I won't have internet access (!!!) while I'm gone, so I won't be posting anything new here for a few days. Try not to miss me too much, and have a happy Thanksgiving!
No sooner had we gotten the new furniture delivered than Eddie claimed it as his own personal scratching post. That's why we've been living in THIS living room for over a week now:
I knew that we had to do something, because allowing him to destroy this furniture is just not an option. My mother would disown me if I had him declawed, so I had to find a suitable alternative.
Lo and behold, I found Softpaws on the web. Softpaws are "vinyl nail caps that are applied to your cat's claws. This amazing product effectively covers the claws so no damage occurs when your cat scratches." Maybe it's the feline equivalent of the Thighmaster or the Ronco Veg-o-matic, but I was willing to give it a try.
My Softpaws arrived in the mail the other day, along with my naked chocolate peeing boy (see previous post). I quickly decided though that the application of said Softpaws was probably better left to a professional. I can't imagine a happy ending for any situation involving me, a cat, a tube of Super Glue, and a bunch of tiny plastic bits. So I found a groomer who was willing to apply them for me, and we just got home with Eddie and his new, improved feet.
Here he is, sporting his special pedicure just in time for the holidays:
It's hard to tell from the picture, but I chose the 2-toned, red and green claw covers:
When we lived in Germany, getting our mail was somewhat of a pain, involving a short car ride and 3 separate ID checks. Here in Kentucky, the mail comes right to our front door, which is still a novelty to me.
Today's mail delivery has made me positively giddy with delight. First, I received something that I think might keep Eddie from shredding our new furniture with his razor-sharp claws, and no, it's not a gun. (More on that in a later post.)
Even better though, I got a box from my friend Amy in Germany! I had asked Amy to send me the German movie Barfuß, which was recently released on DVD (make sure you pronounce that "deh-fow-deh" like the Germans do). I have been looking forward to curling up with a bowl of popcorn and my region-free portable DVD player for some time now. I assure you it is strictly an educational endeavor, an opportunity for me to keep my German skills sharp, and NOT just an excuse to drool over Til Schweiger. . . . Oh, who am I fooling? It is ALL ABOUT drooling over Til Schweiger!
Here's a picture of Til, should you be inclined to indulge in a little drooling yourself:
Ain't he purty?
But there was more in the box than just the DVD I had requested. There was also . . . I really hope you're sitting down for this . . . a chocolate peeing boy! Note that it's not a "chocolate-peeing boy," as that would be gross and anatomically impossible to boot. No, it's a chocolate rendition of that famous Belgian statue, Mannekin Pis, and he even comes with his own quaint little metal house:
I fairly danced around my kitchen with glee at this embarrassment of riches. A chocolate peeing boy is at least as good as a chocolate Christmas demon! My only concern right now is what part to eat first.
Visit this website to learn more about Mannekin Pis and to send primitive Flash-animated postcards to your loved ones featuring the little fellow. I'm partial to the one that has George Bush's head superimposed over the statue's. But that's just me.
My life isn't terribly blog-worthy these days. I'm keeping very busy though, having recently started up my freelance indexing business again. I enjoy it, and I love making extra money to throw into the new furniture fund, but it's not very exciting. Mostly I do legal stuff, lots of tables of cases and statutes. I've done 3 tables for books on patent law in the past 2 weeks. See?! You're falling asleep just thinking about it.
I did have a good chuckle a couple days ago, when I came across this case: Power Lift, Inc. v. Weatherford Nipple-Up Systems. I snickered like Beavis as I tried to find out more, but all I could find was that this case "held that a license agreement is a contract governed by ordinary principles of state contract law and examined whether state relief from forfeiture provision was preempted." Yawn.
I was thinking the other day that it's a shame blogging is such a recent invention. I've missed out on recording so many cool and interesting things. I thought maybe it would be fun to go back and use old material for times like these when my present-day existence is so boring. Let's see . . .
Three moves ago, we spent 2 blissful years in Hawaii. As our time there was coming to a close, we took it into our collective head that we should learn to surf, so we headed for Waikiki. Mike had already had one lesson, and he was eager to show off for Fred, who had recently returned from one of his numerous TDY trips all across the Pacific rim. The boys took off together, and we girls got ready for our lesson.
Our teacher was a huge, local-kine beach boy, friendly enough but definitely intimidating to 5-year-old Annabelle. He plopped down next to her, looked her in the eye, and said, "AhnnaBELLE! I nah worried 'bout yoo. Yoo gonna be ooooooooKAY. I worried 'bout yo mama."
How sweet, I thought, that he would try to build up her confidence like this. I only hoped that she wouldn't be too disappointed if it turned out that surfing was a touch harder than Danny Boy made it sound.
After our drills in the sand, we followed Danny out into the waves. I took the first wave, Danny pushing my board hard toward the beach and hollering at me to "Paddle, paddle, paddle!" and "UP!" I made it up onto my knees and splash! fell off the board.
I came up from the water spluttering and looking for Annabelle, anxious to show her that her mom was OK. I started to panic when I couldn't see her little blonde head bobbing around in the waves at the break. And then I saw this:
There was my baby, grinning from ear to ear, and gliding across the water like she owned the ocean.
No, seriously, have a seat. Because NOW IT IS POSSIBLE! After 2 solid months of fighting over who gets to sit in the rock-hard wooden rocking chair, we have living room furniture. Here is our new living room as viewed from between the rungs of the stair rail:
One thing worth mentioning that you can't see from the picture is that the ottoman opens up and provides storage for blankets, magazines, the cat, whatever.
Here is the funky cool mirror that we picked up at Pier One the other day and that we are planning on hanging over our fireplace in hopes of fooling the easily deceived into thinking that they are NOT in fact standing in the narrowest living room known to mankind:
Now all we need to get is a rug, curtains, end tables, and dining room furniture, and we'll be more or less finished. With the downstairs anyway. I think I'll go lie down on the couch now.
We're enjoying a beautiful autumn here at Fort Knox. The tree that I posted about a couple weeks ago has long since dropped its leaves, but plenty of others are continuing the show, like this one:
Of course, with pretty leaves comes a whole lot of raking. The good news though is that we just have to get the leaves out to the curb, where a big vacuum truck comes along weekly and slurps them all up. The better news is that it has been quite warm, as you can tell by Fred's unconventional November attire:
While I was outside with the camera commemorating the raking, I decided to take a couple of neighborhood shots. This is what our street looks like:
And this is our house:
Not too shabby, eh? Of course, it would be better if we had FURNITURE. The new living room stuff is being delivered on Thursday (finally!), and Fred and I are setting out once again this weekend in search of dining room furniture. I'll post pictures soon.