Friday, January 29, 2010

The Geator with the Heater: A Motown Love Story

So as part of trying to keep life normal when my dad was sick, my Mom and I began taking an Oldies line dancing class. She's a bit of a Motown fanatic as it is, so it seemed like the perfect escape for an hour every Sunday. Dad was well enough at that point to be on his own for an hour plus travel time, so I would come over, spend the morning with him while Mom ran errands and then she and I would go off to the fire hall to learn how to Chez Vous, MJ shuffle, Wagner Walk, and Tush Push.

Mom is by far a much better dancer than me — or at least where this stuff is concerned. I guess she has Uncle Pat to thank for that because he was the one that taught her back when she was in grade school and he was in high school. It's always fun to see those two at a wedding because they can cha-cha with the best of em and their Chez Vous to "You Can't Hurry Love" is unbeatable. One of my favorite stories is hearing how exciting it was for Mom to go to her first high school dance. At St. E's back in the day, you were allowed to go to the Friday night high school dances as soon as you graduated eighth grade. So the first Friday night after the last day of eighth grade was sort of a big deal. Mom, I've been told many times, got all dressed up in her brand new sailor suit (apparently all the rage back then) and her patent leather dancing shoes and headed up through Canby Park to dance the night away with the high school kids.

So now when we go to these classes, every so often I get a glimpse of that excited eighth grader all ready to go to her first dance. Mom is sans the sailor suit at this point (a major improvement) but there is such an unencumbered joy when she does these dances. And you can tell they're just a part of who she is at this point because she's always throwing in spins and turns and extra stuff all over the place. It's really something.

So even with Dad gone and dancing now on Tuesday nights, we're still going pretty much weekly to learn all the newest (old) dance crazes. This week (after a wild goose chase to the Elsmere fire hall before I realized I told them the wrong place) Katie and Aunt Maryann came with us. I'm hoping that they'll come back because it was a blast sharing this with others.

Actually another motive of mine for keeping up with these classes is to be able to have a whole block of Motown music at my wedding and actually be able to dance to it. I'll never be as stylin' as Jerry Blavat, but I have to aspire to something, don't I? I think it would be neat to invite anyone who plans to come to the wedding (when I get around to it) who wanted to learn these dances to come to these classes so that they could do a few along with me and Mom and Uncle Pat. If nothing else, I'm going to make sure my Chez Vous is up to par so Mom and I can knock out "Can't Hurry Love" with the best of 'em.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Mathilda's Big Play Date

Well it's official. We've become those somewhat endearing, slightly annoying "pet" parents who post Facebook pictures of their "children."

We've been working with the gliders to get them to trust us over the past four and a half weeks with mixed results. Mathilda (the smaller of the two) has been pretty receptive from the start and although a few bumps in the road (and a few nips of the hand), she has gotten to the point where we can handle her. Fiona on the other hand, is a bit more of a handful, but that's a different post.

When I came home last night, Alex had her out of the cage and they were playing! Sitting on the floor in a pile of change that was falling out of his pockets (making it "hail in the club" he told me), he was holding her in one hand and she was jumping back and forth.

In this shot I think Alex is watching NCIS -- he looked happier in real life. But anyway, that aforementioned dorky pet parent thing? Well, of course we have videos. This a particularly cute one of Mathilda sitting in Alex's hand eating an apple. It's funny because they don't seem to actually eat the apple so much as shred tiny pieces off, suck the water out, and spit the pieces all over my carpet.

After a little snack, she got to exploring. Here she is trying to figure out how to get into Daddy's hoodie. (Yes, we refer to each other as Mommy and Daddy...again with the pet parents thing).

They are actually little marsupials and they bond to you by being next to your skin, so they like to try to be in your pockets and under your clothing. They actually gave us a pouch with a screen on one side and we're supposed to keep them in in with the screen side against our skin while they're sleeping during the day so that they get used to being around our scent. I actually have both of them on me right now which is sort of hilarious because I look like I have a little preggo belly under my tank top. It's even funnier when Alex grows his little preggo belly. Seriously strange looking. No pictures of that yet. Don't need to be freaking people out with this dual pregnancy thing. We're already sort of a weird couple.

Well anyway, apparently now that Mathilda is getting used to us, she also likes to groom us. She actually licks Alex's hands like they're covered in sugar glider crack. Apparently my hands don't hold any particular interest, but she did seem to like to lick my forehead. She actually sat on my head and groomed me for a bit. I'm totally jealous because Mathilda is a Daddy's girl, but she did warm up to me after a bit.

And of course one of the most fun things about these little guys is the fact that they "fly." This is by far my favorite video but of course it's not oriented correctly. So everyone turn their heads to the side until I get around to figuring out how to do that and see how cute this is.

She actually jumped right on my camera. So now that we've gotten this far with Mathilda, the hope is that Fiona will join her sister in hanging out with us soon. And of course there's more pictures here.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Little Girls are Secret Weapons Against Terror in New York City

Dan McWilliams and I have an ongoing battle to see who can create the most outlandish MS Paint images, but this week Dan just took the cake. Here's a very sweet picture of Sam and Skylar climbing all over Alex in the sort of crazed ritual that happens every time we're over there.

Now here's what Dan did with it in Paint. Genius. His caption reads, "
Learning from Tokyo's mistakes, the city of New York unleashed their secret weapons against Alex-zilla before any serious damage occurred."


Friday, January 22, 2010

Dinner with the Bijeys of East Cleveland

So made my way down to Newark last night after visiting with Logan. Mom went out to the Dupont Theatre with Allyn and Andy as a part of her birthday present, so I stopped by there on my way to dinner and fed him. He decided he deserved a treat for being such a good boy and told me so repeatedly until I gave in. Here's a bit of Logan's begging.

After my visit
with Logan, I headed down to UD to visit with a few of my favorites. Matt was hard at work when I got there. Apparently the first round of duck didn't go as well as one might have hoped so he was working on round two.

While we let Matt work his magic in the kitchen, Nak, Anthony and I talked celebrity gossip (did you see Mo'Nique's hairy legs at the Golden Globes or Heidi Montag's awful surgery results?) and watched a bit of Jersey Shore. I hadn't seen it yet but it was most certainly....something. I can honestly say it made me feel better as a person. Apparently Nak is going to buy the uncensored DVD so we can have a marathon at some point.

Once Matt finished working his magic in the kitchen, dinner was absolutely delicious. I'm sure he could give you more details, but i know it was duck with a pear sauce that contained pink peppercorns (although it called for green and this was a major point of the conversation throughout the meal), pears, wild rice and mushrooms, and creamed spinach that tasted like pure delicious with maybe a hint of spinach. And dessert was a ridiculously delicious ginger creme brulee.

Et voila.

Matt seemed happy with the results...

All in all a lovely evening with some of my favorites.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Fuzzbutts

So here's the first pictures of the new babies. They were up and about when I got home so I figured it was as good a time as any to grab a few shots.

So without further ado, here's Mathilda and Fiona!

Mathilda had just woken up, so she was making her "why am I awake" face. She takes after Mommy with the whole not sure if she likes to be awake thing.

Fiona, on the other hand was up and around. She didn't want to hold still for a picture!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Monday, January 18, 2010

Date Night in Philly

When it comes to what I consider a "good" present, my definition doesn't involve a lot of "stuff." Alex gets this about me.

This year for Christmas, he got me tickets to see Wicked in Philly. Great gift, right? Ah, but what makes it a great gift? First and foremost, Alex isn't really into musicals, yet there were in fact two tickets and a promise for a lovely dinner beforehand. Can't really beat that.

Here's the beginning of the evening at the Melting Pot. Notice the fancy, schmancy dress and suit.

The second thing that Alex gets about me is that I love, Love, LOVE any excuse to dress up. And I mean any excuse. Like I had to talk myself out of wearing a dress to New Years this year because I would have stood out like a sore thumb and been freezing the entire night. Sometimes looking good isn't always practical. But I digress.

Part of my present was that Alex promised to "suit up" (in the words on the one and only Barney Stinson as portrayed by the genius NPH). So not only did I get to go out on a random Tuesday on a date planned especially for me, not only did I get to have a nice dinner and see my favorite show, but I had the perfect excuse to get all swankified and spend some quality time with the guy I like most!

Now that's a great present.