The guys have been coordinating the ski trip so far this week, and Jenelle and I have been spending a bunch of time on the phone. We had paint drama - the least dramatic of all the dramas, health, relationship, car, baby-momma, etc - on Sunday and so we lost some ground on that project. Tonight we got back to where we were on Sunday, but I wasn't feeling too hot so we didn't push too hard.
posted at 10:11 PM - comments
Saturday, February 23, 2008
There was a lunar eclipse this week, which was actually the second rarest occurence at our house. The first rarest (or most rare, if you must) was a coed trip to Rodale park to jog. I think we've been paying for it since with hurty legs and sore muscles - running is hard but a necessity in my future if I'm going to join classmates for the Webb triathlon Memorial Day weekend.
Today we wrapped up all of the white and Manhattan Mist painting, leaving Sandstone, Cumberland Fog, Starry Night, and Orange Burst remaining. This is not one of those things that we really love to do, but the results are awesome. We took a midafternoon break with cats in the fume-free bedroom and then needed to get outside for awhile, which took the form of a treat at Cold Stone.
Lately we've been talking about the wedding for a variety of reasons, which lead to a revisiting of our wedding venue via the web. A search turned up the following prominent result:
Rick Greenup from the Pebble Beach Condo Association voiced his concern over the noise level at the Vineyard Inn during weddings and parties being held. Rick stated there have been seventeen weddings that were held this past summer. Rick stated he has come to the township board for help in resolving this issue. Tom McMillan also came to address the problem of noise and parking from the Vineyard Inn during weddings and parties. Gib Swinburnson stated there is a light ordinance but the noise ordinance needs to be addressed. Fran Greenup stated this is not a recent problem and has tried to be tolerable but it is a residential area. Marian Swinburnson stated her concern over the objectionable language. Bahle stated he would like to sit down with Greenup to talk about the issues. Deputy Bowen was in attendance and stated they had been called to the Vineyard Inn once this summer. Bahle stated he would be in contact with Greenup.
Emphasis mine. For shame, you crazy revelers, parkers, and users of objectionable language. For us this is a non-issue but a reminder that one couples' joy is another's October visit to the Township Supervisor's meeting.
Finally, a picture by Jenelle from Air & Space's Stephen F. Udvar-Hazy Center.
Snow makes people happier. I know because it snowed here overnight and on my way to work a nice man walking his dog gave me a wave. That's never happened before - snow is the only possible explanation for his cheeriness.
We're into our last major inside painting weekend. This time out it is stairwells and the second floor (or most of it, anyway). We boosted the economy at Home Depot last night and are geared up for painting walls, building and varnishing bookshelves, and then installing bookshelves. My day at work was a little dry for my post-engineering tastes and that didn't motivate me to spend the evening painting, but we had leftover scalloped potatoes from last night and a spot of pudding with chocolate shavings and that perked me right up.
Pretty strange few days which would be fodder for many, many sites in the blogosphere. Here, though, updates about the weekend: a trip to DC and friends. We watched a youngster play some hoops and were pretty low key otherwise. Sunday we visited the Air & Space Museum's Udvar-Hazy Center at Dulles Airport. It has been on my list since opening in 2003 and, after our visit, remains on the list for at least another visit. Back at home we've regained some motivation and momentum. Projects include but are not limited to second floor painting, a loft bookshelf system, and some cooking challenges.
posted at 10:03 PM - comments
Friday, February 15, 2008
Valentine's Day has always been a biggie for us, stemming from its importance during our courtship as one alert reader put it. This year we celebrated a second St. Valentine's first: first as a married couple. We visited Macungie hotspots Bear Creek and Stoned Crab; appetizers and drinks at the former and a great dinner with a lovely Argentinian Malbec at the latter. There's something that still feels a bit 'play grown up' about fancy dinners together at fine restaurants, but we had a great, great time and felt a lot like two kids who are happy together.
Over the past months we've transitioned from wedding focus to house focus. Progress on the wedding was hard to quantify, whereas with the house it's easy to see and easy for us to enjoy. I guess we get one-track-minded about it. That being said, here's a great before-and-after album Jenelle made tonight while I was on the phone.
After as much traveling in cold regions as I have done, I guess last night's ruine attempt to get out of Toronto was bound to happen. The way airlines give you hope, though, is amazing... explain to me how the plane's electronics not being suitable for flying in low visibility is something that needs to be held close to the chest for three hours? By the time CO opened up all the details, there was no time to do anything but get a room and spend the night, then spend virtually all of today getting back to 18062.
Obligatory rental car review: Dodge Avenger, ???. This was the quietest car I've ever been in, except when you give it gas, after which point it made a sort of hollow snarling that made you wonder what might happen. I didn't mind the interior, but I dig minimal style and can easily see where the tactile experience might turn some people off.
Back in the Lehigh Valley, we tried Five Guys Burgers & Fries. It's a chain that people rave about. We rave that it is pretty good, but no 'let's drive 920 miles to Florida and hope that Cheeburger is open' mecca.
Back on the road/sky/whatever; this time to 'the big city' as it is known within Knoll: Toronto. I came by way of CVG, which brought back memories of excited Fridays nights and melancholy Sunday evenings circa 2003-4. Then north over some big water to Toronto, past the CN Tower that almost touches the bottom of the plane, and down at Pearson. Customs. Car rental. Holiday Inn. Blog.
The weekend was brilliantly low-key. We did some of this and that Saturday. Errands, painting a stairway wall that we thought was going to be part of one color and wound up being part of another, baking. Then, dinner with some new friends/colleagues at their home in the evening was fun, gourmet, and fun again. Sunday was a day out to King of Prussia to find a bed, then home to cook, clean, and pack for this trip.
That is the end of that week. It went really quickly, except for Friday morning. I had things to do but somehow that didn't help... sometimes I guess time is against you. At home we kicked back and cooked some stirfry, refined the designs for our built-in/not bookshelves for the loft, watched Blimpy Burger on food network, and bathed kittens. Washing a cat is pretty scary stuff, but is all worth it when a soaking wet, 8-lb rat of an animal crowls out of the tub. Yes Oliver, we mean you.
We keep running into familiar faces at the grocers. Last night, hunting for fastnacht or dried beans or some such thing we saw Don from work; he was hauling bread and milk and was on his way after a brief introduction. Still, it makes me feel like we belong here... a sense of place, I suppose. Such continuity in this blog.
Today was not much of a day. That's odd because I got a lot done and tested a bunch of scenarios on our global commerce platform, but my overriding 'deliverable' programming is spitting out an error message: "No deliverable produced. Process Failure." Today was also my first annual earnings report with Knoll, not that there was much for me to do other than log onto Yahoo!Finance like any other schmo and read our 10-K. Best year since KNL went public... all in a day's work.
At home I am furiously trying to remember how to use Rhinoceros to model things three-dimensionally. I've been a little gunshy to use Rhino since some previous projects were viewed as "not too cool" or "a scoche dorky." (In my defense, I wanted to know what the wedding cake and tent would look like. Also, I had free time this summer.) I'm modeling stairs from the deck to our lawn and a shelving system that I dreamed up for the loft. I'm confident in the former but thinking I ought to try some kind of FEA analysis on the latter, which is ironic because I don't care that much if some books crash four feet to the floor but I'm pretty emphatic that nobody had better plummet eight feet to the ground in a cascade of nails and treated wood.
'Place' is a funny idea... hard to define, hard to find, hard to separate from time and experience. It was in that spirit that Jenelle and I piled into the Vibe and drove to Ann Arbor for the weekend.
Fundamentally, this is a dumb idea. It's about 550 miles from Macungie to A2; farther when it's snowing. But Ann Arbor is the place that, at this moment, we identify with more than any other; in this town are the ideas, people, and -yes- places that are most like us. In no small way, this is what we love about life:
Heidi hosted. We crashed on an air mattress. In the morning, we went to Fleetwood. I had hippie hash, Jenelle had spinach and feta omelette. We went to Moosejaw. Three Chairs. Selo/Shevel. Acme. State & Liberty, South U, the new Ross exterior. I don't know whether we enjoy those places because of what they are or because of what they are to us - probably some of both.
Then hockey. At Yost, in the student section. We knew the words and were eager to cheer the goal count, even if in the end we were singing the alma mater after a tie with Northern. Afterwards, Leopolds and Heidelberg, where I ran into a few old classmates.
Sunday. Driving, with Zingermans in our stomach and a bag in the Vibe, we were sad to leave but happy to be headed home. Closure, or maybe just a great weekend?