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Posts Tagged ‘Friday’

It’s 7:30 am and I’m hustling around to get ready for the today’s big yard sale.  I have spent the last couple of weeks scrounging around the apartment, the cottage and through stuff we’ve had left over from doing Flea Markets.  In other words I have WAY TOO much stuff to put out on two tables!!

AND as Peter predicted the ground is wet because for the last two days we have showers….this is NOT an auspicious beginning 😦

I literally spent the entire day yesterday sorting through the boxes of stuff trying to group the junk, er, I mean stuff into plastic bins and price each piece.  This is of course an area where we diverge: I want this stuff GONE and am happy to price it to sell and well, my other half is a bit more attached to his possessions and is not giving anything away!  Oh no?  I’ve already promised myself that 90% of what is going into the sale is going to Goodwill and Habitats if it doesn’t sell.

I’m not immune to the fact that we are probably putting out some items that really don’t belong in  a yard sale, they are much more Flea Market antiques and nostalgic collectibles but right now, this is the only venue.  And, I swear I will do another yard sale in the summer when lots more people are in town.  This particular day was designated by an organizer and promoted as Town Wide.  I hope there was sufficient advertising to entice people to come even though this is one gray, soggy day.  Oh how dismal it all looks now!

This is the morning to be moving quickly and hello Murphy’s Law – we’re up and Peter takes the first shower and drops his lens in the bathroom-15 minutes later we find it.  I need him dressed and outside to set up those big table for me and to lug the crap er, I mean stuff out to the porch.  Just to add to the total aggravation of it all is the fact we broke the door on our shed two weeks ago, it’s not fixed so the wagon which is supposed to be for sale is in there along with big sheets of plastic I wanted with me in case of a shower!  Oh yeah, think it’s going to be a fun, fun day all around!

Friday afternoon my living room looked like this…

And this…

Trying To Sort Through

Trying To Sort Through

By 8pm last night, I had priced, sorted and packed up everything and then listened to the weather report

Way Too Much Stuff

Way Too Much Stuff

Packed and Priced

Packed and Price

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I have a few more photos of those amazing and spectacular and humongous sculptures in Breckinridge, Colorado.  Since snow is predicted for tomorrow, these photo are so very apropos.

Snow Cathedral

Snow Cathedral

Hellooo I'm Here In Colorado!

Hellooo I’m Here In Colorado!

Your Queen Is In Danger

Your Queen Is In Danger

What Is This Doing Here?

What Is This Doing Here?

"And a tip o' the hat to you ma'm"

“And a tip o’ the hat to you ma’m”

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If you’ve been following this blog for a while you know that last January I wrote about my very own Personal Banker. https://pbenjay.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=10832&action.  His name is Damon Miller and he is the Branch Manager of Arvest Bank in Mena, Arkansas.  Today I called Damon and before I could state the reason for my call, I was greeted with “Good morning Miss Lori, how are you today?”  Always cheerful, always pleasant, that’s Damon.  

Yesterday I received an email from the bank informing me and their other customers that due to inclement  weather some of the branches might be closing early and may or may not be open today.  So I asked him about it, what was going on down there?  “Sleet and ice” he said. Most of Mena was without power due to the lines freezing and/or trees falling on them.  The bank had a back-up generator.   Oh wow I’ve been in Arkansas when they had snow and it’s rough.  The state doesn’t really have snow plows, sanders or the like to deal with snow since it REALLY is rare there.  The roads become quickly un-passable and you see vehicles skidding off to the shoulders because they don’t have snow tires or chains either!

Shortly after our phone conversation, I received the two photos below so you can see for yourself what Arkansas encased in ice looks like.

Ice-laden trees bend over under the weight of ice.

Ice-laden trees bend over under the weight of ice.

Crystalized Flowers

Crystalized Flowers

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Brrr-rr  A COLD TURKEY

Brrr-rr A COLD TURKEY

Bad Day At Black Rock, I’ve used that phrase for years and didn’t actually know where it came from until the other day. I didn’t realize it was the title of a 1955 movie starring Spencer Tracey.  Although not so much used now, the phrase which means the worst day ever, was quite popular.  I guess it’s now relegated to the likes of me, women of a certain age.  Of course if you live in Manhattan and use the phrase, people might think you are complaining about working at CBS – oh no that’s just “The Rock”, oh well…. Ah Hah! A correction from my friend, Gail – CBS is known as BLACK ROCK after all.

When I was in Florida last month visiting my daughter and the grandkids, I really got a taste of living in Gulf Stream;  It is a  very small section of Delray Beach in the historic section and I think there are about 800 families.  The school, Gulf Stream Day School IS the heart beat of the town.  It seems as if all the kids go there, dressed in their neat preppy uniforms in khaki, white and navy.  The line of cars dropping off and picking up was pretty impressive.  Then there’s The Ocean Club, where we went for a Friday night barbecue and it was deja vu all over again.  I wrote about that in a previous post; see Sun and Sand, Sangria and Surfing plus Salmon, It’s Saturday-DAY 6.  However the point of bringing that up is that by Friday I  had observed just how small this little town was and remarked to my daughter that, “This place has all the makings of a Peyton Place“.  I said this in front of her and about 4 of her friends.  They just looked at me!  Uh, what’s a Peyton Place?  You’ve got to be kidding me!  Forget the TV show, what about the movie?  Forget about it, they were clueless and I’m getting really old!

COLD TURKEY:  Did you think the phrase Cold Turkey could ever have had a meaning other than the rigors of drug withdrawal?  Yes of course it did or it wouldn’t be in this post, lol.  Turkeys loom large in American psyche and are the starring entrée at every Thanksgiving Day meal.  The phrase talking cold turkey means talking no nonsense and getting done to business.  In the early 20th century, the phrase evolved into talking turkey and also going cold turkey – just getting it done.

As I get older, the list of phrases and words lost to Generation X and Y just gets longer and longer.   But their day will come soon enough.  I’ve already noticed that what I thought was GREAT, they think is AWESOME and the Millennials think it’s SICK!  

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Today is a very hot and humid day in The City!  I know because so far today I have walked about 25 blocks, in TEVA wedge-hi flip flops and carrying what I call the typical NYC handbag.  Today it only had 2 folders in it and no Kindle (thank God).  I could itemize the numerous objects and necessities in my pocketbook but I bet there are thousands of woman all over the country carrying the same home away from home – what if I need…. bag!  Although many of them have it on the front seat while they drive around and are not carrying it in the asphalt jungle. Let’s just say, it’s always heavy and on a day like today, unwelcomely heavy.  With each block, my mood darkened.  Peter wanted to know when I would stop complaining about how hot I was and my response was….well that remark is probably better left unsaid in print. I arrived home (finally), stripped off my clothes and hopped into the shower.  What a fabulous feeling.

If you are wondering what that first paragraph has to do with the title of this blog, it’s actually a precursor to why sometimes living here gets you down, beats you up, changes your outlook on life and makes you wish it was Friday so you could run not walk to your weekend getaway.

So how do you know when you’ve lived in New York City too long?

Dinner – hitting up your slice place at 1:00am

PIZZA!!!

PIZZA!!!

2. Nothing fills you with more rage than getting on a crowded subway car and hearing, “It’s showtime”

3. $12 cocktails and $20 yoga classes seem normal now!

4.You’ve considered moving into your office to save on rent since you spend so much time there.

5. You’ve Seamlessed lunch and dinner in the same day  and not given a shit.

Who cooks anymore?

Who cooks anymore?

6. In the summer you consider the wind coming from an approaching subway to be a nice breeze.

7. You’ve flipped off a tourist bus.

WHAT are they looking at?

WHAT are they looking at?

8. When you visit the suburbs and try to sleep, the silence scares you.

9. You wear ear buds to the grocery store.

"Stayin' Alive," - I Need Endive

“Stayin’ Alive,” – I Need Endive

10. You walk faster than most people run.

Thanks Gail for sending me this hysterical web link.

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English: Albert Einstein, official 1921 Nobel ...

Albert Einstein

Seriously, yes I am! I know I have been MIA for a couple of weeks and one might think the worst;  like “oh dear, she must be really sick” or “oh my things must be going badly for her right now”…

Well I’m here to say NOT SO!  I have been busy, busy, busy.  And of course I am over-committed so unlike Einstein, for some reason I don’t have enough hours in the day to do all that I want to do and I have pushed off writing a blog.  On the other hand since I am a staunch believer in the fact that people do what they want to do all the time, I may have to try to be more honest with myself and my readers.  

It’s true I have been working and the fruits of those labors came true when I was able to list a property for sale in my building.  It took a few visits and a lot of time spent staging it but it was well worth it.  I put it on the market on Friday and the first showings and Open House were on Sunday and on Monday we had one offer, on Tuesday we two offers, on Wednesday we had three offers. On Thursday I l left town to fulfill my other business obligation.  It’s not very easy to serve two masters in two different states even if they are adjacent.

Someone will surely suffer or both and neither will be happy and then I’ll be out on both accounts.  So this weekend I have to settle the issue and am dreading the conversation.  I don’t want to let anyone down, I commit and I stay with it, I take responsibility to a degree that actually is self-destructive by putting other people’s needs above my own.  This time my own level of stress has been so great that I am going to push through my anxiety and confront the issue.  So many factors to consider.

So busy with two jobs, running between two states and all the rest of life’s miseries still in place, although I haven’t written any blogs in two weeks, I have found time to play Scrabble, I did get a pedicure, I did have breakfast with a friend, I did play one game of Mah Jongg and I did go out one night to dinner and a show with friends and I did go to the doctor’s one day.   Well that’s the truth dear readers and I did all that rather than try to write a blog.  

Did I have writer’s block? No, my friend Gail has sent me several articles I have saved because I want to use the material.  There was one reason I postponed and postponed and it began on Mother’s Day.  I wanted to write a loving blog in memory of my mother but instead we were out and then back in the car to NYC and then back into a grinding routine.  My birthday followed shortly after and I wanted to write about this particular birthday and my mother.  I started many times to formulate it in my head.  I knew it was going to be heavy and so I kept procrastinating.  Memorial Day came and went and we had company and we went to a barbeque and we went out to dinner and then we worked here in NJ and then home again-still the blog haunts me.  

I may have to try to write it soon, I think it will be cathartic.

This weekend is for seeing a first cousin who I haven’t seen since she was little and I have no idea of how many years have passed. She and another first cousin who I have never met – And this is on my mother’s side….the unwritten blog is sending me a message. But doesn’t it know I have to work tonight, tomorrow, tomorrow night and Sunday and then drive back to NYC really early Monday so I can go to work there?  Have mercy!

It happens to be pouring rain outside this morning which is making the whole yard a deep bright green.  I glanced out the window and am wondering where the newspaper is, perhaps it floated away.  

Have a delightful day, I’ll be back.

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Oh Memorial Day Weekend!; Much anticipated, longed for as a respite from the daily grind and laced with hopes of warm sunshine and that exhilaration that comes from sticking your feet in the Atlantic Ocean for the first time of the new season.  It’s a weekend filled with…

FLAGS: 

If ever there were ever a town that was labeled All American, it would be Ocean Grove, New Jersey.  When we bought our cottage there, Peter and I both remarked on the proliferation of flags waving “welcome home”  from so..oooo many houses.   There were big flags, little flags and bunting in full array.  Flags unfurling  from porch banisters, mini flags dotting front yard gardens, large flags hanging on second story homes, bunting draped over front porch railings. It was just red, white and blue all over the place.  This year, of course, was no exception.  I saw a lot of mini flags outlining front yards and not quite as much bunting as usual.  Our flag has a rip in it and we know we have to replace it and with the wind we had on Friday made it worse and the flag actually managed to twist itself through the rip and presently is a bit tangled. I definitely will replace it upon my return.  I’m a big flag person so I put 3 small flags in the ground around the house and I hung a red, silver and blue sparkly star thing on the shed and laced a curly que wire covered with silver patriotic stars all around Peter’s objet d’art on the wall of the shed.  Since we didn’t have a large group over for a cook-out, I opted out of using my star-shaped  dishes and my red and blue bowls (much to Peter’s delight).  

FLOWERS:

By Memorial Day, most of what is going to bloom has either done so or is about to;  The Daffodils are long gone as well as the Grape Hyacinths, however, the Peonies are popping and Lillies of the Valley are ringing their little white bells on the side of the house.  This is the weekend that the Ladies auxiliary sells flowering plants and I usually buy my Geraniums from them, but this year I was working on Saturday.  I was determined that before the weekend ended I was going to get some flowering plants for my porch window box and some Geraniums for the back yard table.  I love these Hello Summer rituals;  I plant some Basil (you can just taste those tomato-basil-olive oil salads), try to corral the Peppermint plants and surround them with clam shells.  By Monday, I was anxious to get going with my planting so Sarajane and I set off to Matt’s, a super fruit, vegetable and plant stand. I’m a regular customer during the growing season, picking up the BEST Jersey tomatoes and the sweetest Jersey corn.  It’s still early so the pick of vegetables is sparse but oh did they ever have flowers!  The geraniums were robust and lush so I picked out some pink and white ones for the front porch box and mixed in a leggy leafed purple flower and a cascading pink flowering plant, whose names I can’t remember.  Hurricane Sandy killed all of the flowering plants that had been growing on my front yard  stone wall.  It was with great sadness that I pulled out the dead salt-burnt foliage, I hope I can find something to replace it that will take hold before summer ends.  I did buy a variegated sea grass and planted out front where the salt water had killed one of my   Coral Bells.  It’s going to be a colorful year after all – even though I practically decimated the Butterfly Bush and the Morning Glories are coming up but look a little thin.  Well, we’ll see.

FRIENDS:

What was the best part of this weekend?  Why the friends of course.  Sarajane arrived on Sunday morning just in time for an outdoor brunch.  We hadn’t eaten breakfast outside yet and with the warm sunshine and clear sky, it seemed like the perfect place to eat.  After all, if you have a backyard patio, if you don’t use it in the early summer, you probably won’t use it much later on.  Last 4th of July turned out to be so hot, my guests implored me to move the party indoors where the blessed air conditioning was on.  Fruit salad, fried eggs, turkey bacon and scones; Mmmmm good.  

And more friends….Joe and Michael and Lisa and Kelly and Marcia.  Drinks on their patio Sunday evening in the shadow of the melting iceberg.  We made a lively group as the wine flowed easily and Peter had his gin martini.  It had been a year since we saw Kelly and Lisa, but we just picked up where we left off, everyone is so at ease with each other.  Last time Peter and I were with Michael and Joe, we said it was like being with family and that only proves something Peter has often said, “Our friends are our family of the present” – So True.  We  met Marcia that night and instantly liked her; perhaps we will see her in The City.

Having house guests can by trying and tiring but Sarajane was a great help in the kitchen and good company. Come back soon!

FOOD:    

Red Cherries, Blue Curacao and White Cream of Coconut - A REAL Patriotic Drink

Red Cherries, Blue Curacao and White Cream of Coconut – A REAL Patriotic Drink

Speaking of our house guest and food being the topic, we were treated to Bananas Foster and grilled peaches with vanilla ice cream.  The bananas complemented my pancakes – that was another outdoor breakfast and again a beautiful day to eat outside.  Monday evening we decided to cook out;  Marinated chicken breasts on the grill (and thanks to Sarajane, they remained moist and were cooked perfectly), Jersey tomatoes with basil (from my new little plant) and mustard potato salad with fresh dill. A really lovely meal capping a lovely weekend.  But let me rewind a little because I can’t finish this blog without going into some detail about dinner on Sunday night.

After a significant quantity of wine at Joe’s we all headed to Asbury Park to go to Old Man Rafferty’s.  The young’uns decided to walk there and I opted for the comfort of my car.  We did beat them there even though Joe was sure they would get there first – I wonder if he used a whip or a cattle prod lol.  Anyway, I walked into the restaurant, announced that we were here for the Lugo reservation.  The host inquired if we were a party of 8 and I said yes.  He then stated that when the entire party was there, he would seat us. I friggin’ hate that!  And I asked him if he were planning to turn the table in the time before the rest arrived!  Oh my, did I mention that the wine had been flowing easily at Joe’s?  Thank God, they arrived within 2 minutes and we all sat down.  Now NJ restaurants are big, and certainly much bigger than 99% of New York city restaurants, however, even in this large restaurant  our group stood out or should I say were heard out.  Well you know how hard it is for 8 people to have multiple conversations especially when the table is not a round one.  I noticed that the couple sitting next to us were disturbed to say the least with our decibel level and the fact that they left after just having soup was probably the most convincing point. Oh well…. Joe likes to tease us about being Grandpa and Grandma, oh actually he said Great-Grandpa;  Yes well we are older than the rest of them BUT it wasn’t us who was ordering Tiki drinks, throwback to the 50’s!  And speaking of throwback, you should have seen a certain someone throw back those Blue Hawaiians!  Not one, not two but THREE! Yup, THREE! Whoooheee, did we have fun!

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Really who doesn’t love a 3 day weekend?  And what a great time of the year to have one too!  The beach is supposed to officially open…. And here’s how it went down.

We arrived a day early as did our friends Joe and Michael, all anticipating a long leisurely weekend with house guests.  Joe and Michael were expecting Lisa and Kelly and Sarajane would join us on Sunday so we could all have our 2nd annual Memorial Day cookout with them.  I was looking forward to lovely afternoon and catching up with the California contingency and Joe and Sarajane hadn’t seen each other in a while.  I bet you know where this is heading…..best laid plans!

Joe called me on Friday morning with disastrous news;  Upon arrival they discovered that their refrigerator had broken down and what a mess!!!  They weren’t sure whether the water filter or the ice maker broke because water was leaking out of the refrigerator through the NEW wooden floor boards and into the basement.  They were able to salvage a few food items and  I said I had room to store them until the repair man came that afternoon.  They tried unsuccessfully to open the freezer and couldn’t – apparently it had filled with water and then froze into a solid block. YIKES!  Well, Joe, Michael, Lisa and Kelly arrived carrying bags of food stuffs salvaged from the iceberg.  Joe expected the repairman in a few hours and so I left them a key to retrieve the food,  and surely Sunday’s cookout all would be fine.  NOT!

The repairman said he couldn’t fix the refrigerator because it had to defrost first; DEFROST? WHERE? In the kitchen?  I don’t think so!  Mind you the refrigerator is only about a year and half old and because they were expecting house guests, the freezer was FULL of food!   Joe left me a voicemail saying the cookout was off, maybe we could make another plan.  Oh Boy….

By Saturday evening we decided that we would all meet for dinner on Sunday evening BUT the iceberg is melting and Joe and Michael have to get it out of the house.  It has to go outside in the yard and Joe thought of  renting a dolly at Home Depot and trying to move it out.  I told him I had the name of someone he should call, actually two people.  I looked up the telephone number of a man and his sons who had helped us move some furniture out of our cottage and moved stuff in that we couldn’t handle.

Thank God, that contact was still valid.  Rafeek showed up Sunday morning with his son and in short order the iceberg a/k/a the refrigerator was out the door and in the yard and wrapped up in plastic.  And now let the melting begin.  I can’t imagine what everything in that freezer is going to look/smell like after a couple of days sitting outside.  

Sunday dawned sunny and beautiful and now that the refrigerator problem was temporarily solved, we decided we would all meet at Joe and Michael’s for a drink before we went out to dinner.  Sarajane was looking forward to seeing Joe again and the renovation of the cottage and Peter and I were looking forward to meeting Marcia, the third houseguest!  

We always have such a good time when we get together with Joe and Michael and Lisa and Kelly are delightful.  Everybody but me seems to be in advertising;  Peter knew many of the players from when he worked in sales promotion.  I enjoy hearing the stories, me, the Mad Men groupie.  

The House guests Kelly, Marcia and Lisa

The House Guests Kelly, Marcia and Lisa

Wine and deviled eggs on the patio and lots of chatter – and off to dinner we go!

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Most of the country thinks New York City is just one big asphalt jungle.  Well they are so wrong! We have lots of parks, lots of trees and as you know a fair share of wildlife living the good life in the Big Apple.  It’s Fab Foto Friday and I have a picture story for you; This is the tail, tale of the City Squirrel and the Little Blonde Girl.

"Look what I have"

“Look what I have”

"Yes I'm serious, it's for you"

“Yes I’m serious, it’s for you”

"It's right here, can't you see it"?

“It’s right here, can’t you see it”?

"There's more where this came from"

“There’s more where this came from”

"Hey, see ya"

“Hey, see ya”

All photos courtesy of Murray Head

 

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Last night we were invited to go to the theater as guests of our friends, David and Sarah,  It was a very special theatre in that the play was produced and performed by members of the Amateur Comedy Club.  Which by the way does not mean that it is a comedy club as we know them today.  The group puts on all kinds of plays.  So far this all sounds pretty normal but….

The Historic Amateur Comedy Club

The Historic Amateur Comedy Club

First, some history of the ACC –  The Amateur Comedy Club was founded on April 18, 1884 by seven gentlemen amateur actors to produce comedies.  They were all former members of the Madison Square Dramatic Organization which, as its name suggests, was devoted to the production of dramas, and they wanted a change.  The Club’s first production took place a year later on February 13, 1885, at the University Club Theater.  Events came full circle 25 years later when the “Comedy Club” dropped the requirement that it only produce comedies which, at that time, were usually light and forgettable things.  In 1909, some “brash young members” rebelled, and since then the Club has produced comedies, tragedies and musicals.  But for that change, the Amateur Comedy Club might have disappeared years ago.  Instead, it is now the oldest continuously performing theatrical company in the United States.

The Clubhouse… The Club is located in two former carriage houses located in Sniffen Court, a mews on East 36th Street in Manhattan’s Murray Hill District.  Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, they were built in the 1860’s and acquired by the Club and adapted to their present configuration  in 1918: a theatre downstairs, with a green room, work room, dressing rooms and a kitchen upstairs.  A corner of the Green Room serves as the administrator’s work space.

Over the years the Club has accumulated a fascinating archive of New York theatre memorabilia, a photographic record of its productions and curious objects, some of which adorn the Green Room where members and guests congregate over coffee at intermissions.   There is also carefully preserved an unbroken collection of Amateur Comedy Club playbills dating from the first production in 1885.

So as you could see this wasn’t exactly your normal theater!  Add that to the fact that attendees at Friday night and Saturday night performances are required to wear black tie attire.  That was almost the best part!  We got dressed up;  Peter in a vintage 1937 tuxedo and I in my usual black on black with a very glam 1930 ish cut velvet duster.  What’s more the invitation came by email on Friday morning at 5:14am – sort of short notice!

AND Peter had an operation on Wednesday (and not really all that minor) and came home on Thursday and here it was Friday and he was out on the town in a tux by Friday night.  I can tell you if it had been me who had the operation I would be in my pajamas till Sunday.

The play, Ramshackle Inn was a hilarious comedic murder mystery that took place in a run-down hotel in Maine.  The casting was terrific, the member/actors wonderful and the whole evening a delight.  After the play, we all went back upstairs to the Green Room where we enjoyed a couple of glasses of champagne.  Peter was of course, in his element, surrounded by women in evening and cocktail dresses and I and every other woman in the place appreciated the male contingency all dapper in tuxedos.  Don’t men know that women LOVE to see men in tuxedos?

Lori, Peter and David in the Green Room

Lori, Peter and David in the Green Room

Chris (actor) and Peter

Chris (actor) and Peter

 

And as true New Yorkers, we left the theatre and hopped on a bus going uptown,  Only in New York do you see  a tuxedo-clad gentlemen and his date riding a public bus uptown!!

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