Wednesday, October 31, 2007

carving fingers

Yesterday Sam's class took a fieldtrip to Linvilla Orchards. It is a great old farm where you can feed the animals, pick your own fruit, go for hayrides or play on the really cool playground. James and I met up with Sam's class for a little while so we could pick out some pumpkins for Halloween.
After I picked Sam up from school we decided to carve the pumpkins. We spread some newspaper out on the porch and took out the cheesey pumpkin carving set that I had bought last year at the grocery store. Surprisingly we got an entire pumpkin carved without incident - not even a pumpkin seed fight. However just as I was cutting out the top of the second pumpkin my knife broke. I tossed the pieces in the trash and picked up the second -and final- knife and continued to cut. This knife broke as well, but this time when it snapped I ended up scraping my finger across the back edge of the blade as it was still stuck in the pumpkin. I calmly went to the kitchen, washed my hands, tried to stop the copious bleeding by wrapping a wet paper towel around my finger, and called John to let him know I was on my way to the hospital.
I ended up just going to John's office. He and his partner decided that the cut wasn't deep enough for stitches. John cleaned it out, taped it up, and put a splint on it, telling me I could not move my finger (or get it wet) for a week. No problem! Ha!
As I was getting ready to leave for dress rehearsal I explained to John my problem. The injured finger is my index finger on my right hand. ALL of the choreography for The Mikado involves flipping open a fan with my right hand. As I attempted to demonstrate the technique to John with the giant splint on my finger he started cracking up. He didn't laugh so hard when I told him that he would be responsible for giving the kids their baths for the week.
So have I learned from this experience? Absolutely! Next year when I am carving pumpkins I will use better quality knives!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

new format

Ok, I should be taking a nap right now, but I felt like a little change - hence the new decor of my blog. The Mikado must really be getting to me.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

tech week

We started tech week for The Mikado on Saturday with a 5 hour tech rehearsal. Oh the joys of theater! The show finally feels like it is coming together. There are still some worries about the choreography - and the fact that it has been changed so many times we are all doing our own thing, but hey, that will be fun anyway.
Tonight was our first rehearsal with the orchestra. They sound pretty good and we didn't have any major glitches so that gives me hope. We open in five days. If I don't post for awhile, that's why. If you come to see the show, I'll be the one in the kimono with the black wig... oh wait, so will everyone else. =)

Friday, October 26, 2007

California Wildfires

I was listening to a NPR special on the California wildfires the other day and they were interviewing two guys that had returned to their neighborhood to fight some residual hotspots that sprang up after the firefighters had moved on. The guys were using buckets of water from a swimming pool to protect their homes and the homes of their neighbors. Some brainiac from the township had turned off the water supply to the neighborhood so they couldn't use hoses. The interviewer asked the guys why they were doing this. They obviously hadn't slept in several days and one of the guys was in flip flops having melted the soles of his shoes the day before. They didn't know how to reply at first, then one guy said, "I guess because it is the right thing to do. I would hope that my neighbors would do the same thing for me if they were in my shoes." I wonder if he was the guy in the flip flops?

Another story I heard on the news that night was of a couple who returned to their neighborhood to find their home of 20+ years burned completely to the ground. As the stared at the desolate scene they noticed a lumpy blanket laying in their yard out of the way. When they unrolled the blanket they found all of their framed pictures of their family. Apparently one of the fire fighters had had the presence of mind to remove them from the house and put them somewhere safe for the family. The couple expressed their most profound gratitude for the individual who had such kindness and foresight to do something like this.

I just wonder how many of us would be so brave or so thoughtful in a time of crisis? Many of these people were leaving their homes, literally driving through flames to get to safety. What would you do in their position? Do you have your 72 hour kit ready?

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

model goof-ups

Sorry, in the spirit of true "brotherly love" from the city of fat and ugly people (see previous blog) I found some runway screw-ups that are too funny to pass up.


Model falls through a hole on the runway.

and an even clumsier version...

Model falls down twice.

The funniest part of this one is the newscasters' response.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Looking for attractive people? Don't go to Philadelphia!

*This morning one of the featured stories on Yahoo was titled "Looking for attractive people? Don't go to Philadelphia!" First of all, rude!!! Second of all, I would like to know how they measured this. Granted, Philadelphia is ranked as one of the top 10 fattest cities in the country (thank you Philly cheesesteak!). I would still like to see why they rated us so harshly. I am not a vain person by any means but this seems a little cruel. Why even do such a survey? Of course, as if that wasn't bad enough they had to add a little zinger at the end:
"And sporting pride in a city known for the fierce loyalty of its fans has been hurt by not having had a national champion in any of its four main sports since the 76ers won the National Basketball Association title in 1983." Could they rub it in any worse? First they attack our attractiveness - or lack thereof - then they attack our sports teams! I expect riots in the streets for sure!!!

*Disclaimer: for those who are not familiar with me, read this blog as sarcastically as possible. Sometimes the sarcasm doesn't carry so well in my written diatribes.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

James' evil laugh

I have no idea where he picked it up but James has discovered the low, evil chuckle (heh heh heh!). Picture a villian with a raised eyebrow looking at you over steepled fingers and you'll know what I mean. James does it in his little, hoarse voice pitched as low as he can and it usually follows the funniest sentances.
Today out of nowhere he said, "Mama, walk the plank! Heh heh heh." (Yes, we are still in a Peter Pan phase.) He followed it up with his mischievious smile.
I swear I am in trouble with this kid!

Monday, October 15, 2007

bunch ball

It's official-- I am a soccer mom. Samuel played his first game of soccer on Saturday. He loved it! I loved watching him! I had forgotten how funny it is watching little kids chase the ball around the field. After the first kick-off the ball was kicked sideways and both teams ended up chasing the ball off their soccer field and all the way across the adjoining field. The best moment - beside Sam and his friend Daxton taking a few minutes out of the game to pick up rocks and tufts of grass and throw them off the field - happened when Sam was chasing the ball full speed and ran straight into a 6 year old girl (who was about a head taller than him) on the other team and ended up flat on his rump. He stood up, shook his head and kept chasing the ball, grinning the whole time. It was great!

Friday, October 12, 2007

home repair woes

John and I have been working on getting all of the little odds and ends in our house fixed up. We have been doing it ourselves A) because we can and B) because we don't want to pay someone else to do it for us. However, if we had unlimited funds there are 5 things that I would pay to have someone else do for us regardless of how silly it may seem.

5) Plumbing for the bathroom. John did a good job with the plumbing in the downstairs bathroom but I can't even begin to tell you how many headaches he had along the way - everything from soldering the pipes that refused to be soldered to breaking the shower floor... twice.

4) Removing wallpaper. When we moved into our house we did not have wallpaper all over the walls and ceilings like my friend Kim did in her house. We were lucky. We only had wallpaper in our closets - about 5 layers of old, nasty, stubborn wallpaper. Oh yeah, there was also some hideous wallpaper in our kitchen; only one layer, but it was glued directly onto the drywall. Ugh!

3) Sanding...anything and everything. I HATE SANDING!!!!!!! We had to spackle and sand the walls in the kitchen 3 times to fix deep gouges in the walls left over from removing wallpaper (see above). We have also done a ton of sanding in our attempt to finish the basement. (See #1.) I have a power sander, but for most of the work you really need to do it by hand. The result is a dead arm and a kink in your shoulder that lasts for weeks!

2) Painting trim. Our house was built in the early 1900's so it has this gorgeous 3" trim around every doorway and window (and trust me, we have a lot of them!). It is beautiful to look at but THE BIGGEST PAIN to paint!!! I have been working on the trim in our tiny kitchen for about 3 weeks because I keep finding reasons to procrastinate. Can you blame me?!

1) Finishing the basement. John and I started earnestly working to finish the basement February or March of last year...we're still not done. Here is what the job entails: deconstructing the mess the previous owners had tried to build, searching out and destroying the armies of spiders who had taken residence there, scraping and recementing the walls, painting on 2 coats of drylock on all the walls to waterproof, 2 coats of paint over the drylock on walls that would not be covered by drywall, running new electrical wires so we could have power down there, framing, putting up insulation and drywall, taping and spackling the drywall and... that is as far as we have gotten. Man, just typing it out makes me tired. We are trying to get it to a point that someone will look at our house with the not quite finished basement and still want to buy it. If I had known what a pain finishing the basement was going to be I would have never let John start, I certainly wouldn't have encouraged him by helping!

If you are planning on undertaking any of these projects I suggest you think twice, have a friend smack you upside the head, then hire someone to do it for you! You will be grateful you did!!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

The Mikado

I am doing some community theater again. This time we will be performing The Mikado. It is another Gilbert and Sullivan show so don't be surprised if you don't recognize the name.
We have a different director than we had for Pirates of Penzance. Our new director has a very different style than our previous one so I have had a little bit of difficulty adjusting. She does not give very specific directions and is easily frustrated - now that we have everything blocked, hopefully it will start going better.
Anyway, the show is a parody on Japanese culture. It shamelessly mocks their culture and although it is funny I am having visions of the audience reacting to the show like they initally do to "Springtime for Hitler" in The Producers. I guess as long as no one starts chasing the director around with a gun we should be ok. Although Sunday at rehearsal I wish I had had a gun!

Saturday, October 6, 2007


I love fall in Philadelphia! We spent the morning at a nearby state park for a leisurely (ha ha)bicycle ride. The last mile of the five mile loop is an enormous hill. We ended up letting the boys out of the trailer and walked up the hill together. As we were walking, a gentle wind came up and sent down a flurry of large yellow leaves twisting and dancing like giant snowflakes. It was so peaceful and refreashing despite the gentle (agonizing) climb.
The winters are brutal here, but they are almost worthwhile when we get to enjoy fall and spring. Almost...

Thursday, October 4, 2007

movie review

On my flight from Philly to SLC I had the opportunity to watch three movies - not because the flight takes that long, but because we sat on the tarmac for two hours because of bad weather somewhere to the west. Gotta love flying!
Anyway, one of the movies they showed was Georgia Rules. There are so many things that bugged me about this movie! As it is set in Idaho, many of the characters are LDS but the portrayal of Mormons is awful. They are shown to be either dumb, naieve hicks or self-righteous pricks that act holier-than-thou but use bad language on top of it. The main girl is played by Lindsay Lohan who seemed to be acting out her real life dramas on the screen. There was tons of drinking, lots of unnecessary nudity/scantily clad moments and lots of sex talk.
The main guy in the movie is a Mormon boy who is getting ready to serve a mission. Despite the fact that he has a girlfriend -going to BYU Idaho- he makes out and stuff with Lindsay's character and then decides he has to marry her because that is the only way that he can repent. He talks to Lindsay and decides it is better to just lie to his girlfriend. On top of that, there is a group of Mormon kids who shout obsceneties at Lindsay's character every time they drive past her.
Now just to clarify, I am not a prude in any sense of the word (I did go to Bryn Mawr after all...), but when I see something like this that is supposed to represent my religion I get a little ticked. On top of that, showed this movie on an airplane that had little kids on board. Granted that much of the language was bleeped out, but kids understand pictures better anyway.
To say the least, it was a horrible movie without a single redeeming quality. So if it is on your list of "must see," I suggest you cross it off.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

reunion results

I got back from Utah (and my reunion) yesterday. I had a surprisingly good time. The homecoming game was enjoyable as were the other reunion events. It was kind of humerous because most of the girls looked exactly like they did in high school - except they had kids attached to their hips. The guys all looked taller and many had added a little bit of padding around the middle too. For the most part everyone was very sweet and glad to catch up. There were a few from the popular crowd that were too good to talk to everyone - some things just don't change in 10 years. Travis, our class president, was a little camera happy; I think he documented every moment of the event. I am glad I went and really happy I got to catch up with a few of my good friends.
The best part was that I got to be home for 3 full days. I hung out with Jared and Steph and their sweet baby Kaylee. Mom and I did tons of shopping and had some really great conversations. It was so nice to see with my own eyes how everyone was holding up. Mom and Dwane both looked tired and overworked (but when are they not?!) so I suggested maybe they should take a break and concentrate on one thing at a time - like serving a mission in Philadelphia for instance. Hey, you can't blame me for trying!
So I have decided that reunions really aren't so bad. I may even consider going to another one -maybe my 20 year. Travis said that for our 50th reunion we are going on a cruise. I'll definitely make that one, provided I can drag John with me!