Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Thursday, December 25, 2008
We're working on a yummy dinner for two - grilled ribeye steaks, green beans, and sticky rice with mushrooms. I think we'll be having vanilla ice cream with apple bundles and cinnamon sugar cookies for dessert. I hope everyone out there is having a Merry Christmas!
Monday, December 22, 2008
Day One - Monday 11/24 - Arrived via Amtrak/MTA from Springfield through New Haven to Grand Central Terminal just before lunch. We managed to find our way to friend Ben's apartment in Brooklyn, where we ended up staying for two nights, due to our other friends catching a nasty bug on their drive up - we didn't want to get sick too! Thank goodness for friends, and we are certainly very grateful that Ben and Annelies didn't mind us crashing at their place. Plus, we got to spend some quality time with them, see their cool new apartment, and meet the two new adorable kitties! We spent the afternoon wandering around Midtown - we just decided to start at Times Square and work our way around from there. David made a stop at Midtown Comics, and I wanted to see the Hoffman Auto Showroom by Frank Lloyd Wright at Park and 56th, which is now a Mercedes-Benz showroom. (I missed it last time.) On the way, we ran into the Lever House plaza, which contained several fountains (the water was drained out due to the cold) of Sanrio character bronze sculptures by Tom Sachs! That was an unexpected treat! Once we found the showroom, the salesman that greeted us at the door (like we looked like were going to buy a Mercedes?) was very friendly when I asked if it would be okay for us look around the interior (yes, we're architects - the easy, generic answer) and take some photos. I asked if he knew what had changed since they acquired the space. He pointed out the original features and even the original furniture that FLW designed that is still in use by the sales staff! I thought that was pretty cool. We finally headed back to Brooklyn to have pizza at Grimaldi's with Ben and Annelies, one of the few coal-burning pizzerias still around, and looked around the pier down the street near the end of the Brooklyn Bridge, overlooking the river and downtown Manhattan. It was a nice view and we got some good night shots.
Day Two - 11/25 - Tuesday morning we headed up to the Upper East Side to meet up with Val and Tim at the Met. They were feeling slightly better, so they wanted to attempt some museum time. It was crazy busy (although perhaps the Met is crazy busy every day?) and we managed to check our coats and start exploring. We hit the back wing first so we could grab a bite to eat for lunch in the cafeteria. Then we took Tim through the Egyptian area so we could get to the American section (most was closed off for renovations, including the FLW room), so we could show him what we could get to in the American wing. We were able to see Tiffany glass, Stickley pieces, and a few other Arts & Crafts items. V&T took off shortly thereafter as they were still regaining their energy back from being sick and were ready to crash for a bit. David and I continued through the Early Christian/Byzantine area in the center, then the Asian wing on the upper right side before calling it quits. We spent about the whole day there, so needless to say, my feet were hurting! Still haven't hit much of the left wing - maybe next time. We decided to try Carnegie Deli for dinner - WAY overrated. Although the corned beef sandwich was impressive in stature, I was not impressed by the taste. We should have gotten pizza...
Day Three - 11/26 - We decided to move to the hotel with V&T today, since the parade was going to be EARLY the next morning and we didn't want to have to commute in from Brooklyn at the crack of dawn. Once we moved our stuff over to the hotel, we headed out for the MoMA. It was still out in Queens last time we were in NYC, so this was going to be our first visit, and our first look at the new building. They had some pretty great pieces, and we also got to see the Van Gogh exhibit. The VG exhibit was okay, but I thought the exhibit at the High was better, with more space in the gallery to move around. It was very crowded with not much elbow room. The building itself was very nice, with a sculpture garden in the courtyard. We left for lunch and came back to finish the other half of the museum. Had a great diner-type lunch two blocks away at the Astro Restaurant. We headed back to the hotel to bum around and rest up a little, then headed out toward the American Museum of Natural History to see the parade balloon inflation start up for the next morning. I think they call it "Float Night". We had plans for a late dinner just around the corner at Ocean Grill, so it worked out perfectly. One of the architects at work has a daughter that waits tables there, so were were able to meet up with him and his daughter served our table! The seafood was excellent - I had to get the scallops, but next time I am going to try the sushi! We turned in right after dinner, as we had to get up early to stake out our spot for the parade!
Day Four - 11/27 - Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade! We got up around 6:30 am and were able to get to our predetermined spot (as researched by Val) for good parade-watching at 51st and Broadway by around 7:15 am. (This is probably the absolute LATEST time to get out there and get a good spot - parade starts at 9 am.) We were at the SE corner, by the Stardust Diner, probably about 4 rows back. Luckily, we had a family with two small girls and another group with grandpa in a wheelchair in front of us, so it probably helped us short people see a little better than having all standing people in front of us. We made small talk with those around us, and had fun talking to the girls. One was sporting her Sponge Bob t-shirt, and was very excitedly anticipating seeing him in the parade. (In fact, she squealed the entire time Sponge Bob passed in front of us - it was very cute!) Finally the parade started, we saw the clowns, the floats, the balloons, the bands, and in particular, the Georgia Tech Marching Band! They were the second marching band to appear in the parade, just after the Snoopy balloon. We got video, Val got photos, we were able to see the drum majors and directors and call out their names since they were on our side of the street. They saw us and waved, so that was cool. And we got to hear them play Ramblin' Wreck as they passed us. What a treat! After Santa passed and the parade was over, we headed back to the hotel to rest and recover from standing for several hours in the cold, then headed back out to make a pilgrimage to B&H Photo and Video, where Val and I both got our Nikon cameras from. The store was a sight to behold! Each department was very organized, with its own help desk and number system for you to speak to a staff person. Once you decided to purchase something, you got a ticket to pay with downstairs, and your items are transported via an overhead conveyor belt system to behind the cash registers, where you pick up your package once you pay for it. I was told that this was the first time in 30 years that they were open on Thanksgiving, so lucky us! I hope they had good business! I highly recommend ordering any of your camera equipment from there - free shipping on a a lot of things, great service and fantastic prices. We then headed to Brooklyn to Val's Cousin Rick's for a nice, quiet Thanksgiving meal - delicious and a great ending for a great day!
Day 5 - 11/28 - This was our last morning in NYC. Since Val and Tim were feeling a lot better at this point, we wanted to hit a few more things for them before leaving town. The Travel Inn was reasonable and great, and they let us keep our car parked there (on-site, free parking all week!) up until 5 pm after checking out! We took V&T to see the windows at Macy's. The 34th Street side had scenes from Miracle on 34th Street, and the Broadway side had the theme "Believe" with a few interactive windows - heat sensors from putting your hand on the glass, I think. I loved the Believe windows - lots of neat imagery and ideas. We then headed to Little Italy/Chinatown for a quick walk-through and pizza at Lombardi's, another coal-burning pizzeria. I think this place is by far the best place we've been to in the city. (I'll take other suggestions for next time, but I think Lombardi's has officially made my "can't-miss" list.) We packed up the car and left the city after lunch, headed to Val's grandmother's in Winchester, VA, to spend the night.
Day 6 - 11/29 - We had a great but short visit with Val's grandmother and mom. We drove the rest of the way back to Atlanta on Saturday, huddled around the Sirius radio and Val's phone waiting for football updates, as our beloved Yellow Jackets were playing the dreaded uga (sic) in the annual Governor's Cup that afternoon. The ACC games are apparently broadcast on XM, so we could only get updates. Luckily, Val's mom was watching back in VA and calling with the updates. It was a bit of a nail-biter toward the end, when we could get a very static-y AM station passing through Charlotte, but in the end, we were victorious! Go Jackets! We made it home in the evening to a very meow-y but loving kitty that was glued to my hip for the next few days.
All in all, a great trip. Not enough time, as usual, but I guess that leaves more for next time!
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Also, I found out today that two of my cousins are expecting babies one month apart from each other! I am very excited for them and looking forward to their exciting summer next year. This may warrant another visit to the west coast...
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
PS - Sorry on the delay of the rest of my NYC post - still trying to get photos sorted out.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Dad, Mom, Lena, me, and David in our annual scarf photo.
As I mentioned in the last post, we made it to my sister's via Amtrak from Boston (South Station) to Springfield without a hitch. We had a great weekend seeing my sister's place and visiting Northampton, Chicopee, Springfield, Holyoke (where my sis and I were born), and Longmeadow (my first home). Northampton was really charming, and we enjoyed a nice brunch at Sylvester's as well as a big Christmas kickoff shopping weekend in all the shops (20% off weekend). We had a cold but enjoyable walk around the Ashley Reservoir, which was actually partially frozen the morning that we walked it, but beautiful nonetheless. We also had a really nice dinner with my old babysitter, Betsy, and her mom, Ruth. It's been 27 years since they've seen me, so it was a fun reunion for all of us!
Lena, Ruth, Buddy, Betsy, Mom, Dad, David and me.
My sister's birthday is coming up this Thursday (Happy Early Birthday, Lena!), so we went ahead a celebrated while we were all together by having dinner at a great little German restaurant in Chicopee, Munich Haus. We then went back to her place and indulged in a very yummy Truffle cake that we bought at a bakery in downtown Northampton.
Enjoying our wurst and schnitzel at Munich Haus.
Monday morning, we headed to NYC via Amtrak to New Haven and then MTA Metro-North Railroad (a commuter train) into NYC Grand Central Terminal. Our friends Val and Tim picked up a pretty nasty bug on their drive up from Atlanta, so we were advised to stay away from their hotel room initially. Luckily, we were able to stay with our dear friend Cyndi's brother, Ben, in Brooklyn for the first two nights, so other than a little longer commute time to get into the city, our travels were not delayed too much. Thankfully, Val and Tim were able to recuperate somewhat and able to start seeing the sights with us on Tuesday. Stay tuned for more on our NYC adventures in the next post!
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
My trip has become part work, part pleasure. I've being sent in someone's place to attend the Greenbuild Conference in Boston, which is exciting for me. I haven't been in Boston since I lived in MA, so probably about 5 years old, and even then, the only thing I remember is the Boston's Children's Museum, in all it's glory (at least at 5). Also, the Greenbuild Conference is a gathering of like-minded architects, builders, designers, and vendors with green buildings in mind, and since that's going to be the wave of the future, anything I can learn is a plus. My DS is in Chicopee, and I have not had the opportunity to visit her since she moved there almost 1.5 years ago, so I'll get to see her and my parents, as well as my childhood area, for the first time since age 6. And then of course the finale, NYC. We'll be enjoying the sights there for sure. MoMA is definitely on the list, and a couple of restaurants. And seeing my beloved GT Marching Band in the Macy's parade. Sounds like a whirlwind, I know, but I am really looking forward to it all! Now to figure out how to pack for 11 days of cold weather in my little carry-on suitcase...
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Friday, November 7, 2008
We are going to the Canstruction Gala tonight, so I'll have photos of our company's piece de resistance up soon. I hope our "Mario CAN defeat hunger" will get a prize - he turned out pretty well! Also, I just realized that Wednesday was my first year blogiversary. Happy Blogiversary to me, and thanks for reading!
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Camera update - just checked tracking and it looks like if all goes well, the camera should be coming to me at work tomorrow!! I am SoooOOOooo excited!!
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Accessories will be welcome for Christmas gifts...
Friday, October 31, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Starting from fluff balls:
Ladies from our class with our finished products:
My finished bracelet and leftover wool beads:
My new stash of angelina fibers (sparklies) and wool roving:
My new stash of fat quarters:
Val and I also were able to meet up with one of my childhood friends, Judith, who recently moved back to Gainsville, and in the process we discovered the Talbot's outlet and a wonderful little French place, the Georgia French Bakery. I got away with a straw hat, velveteen jacket, ballet flats, and two belts for about $30 at the Talbot's outlet, and had delicious French onion soup, roast beef panini, and chocolate eclair from the bakery. Both are highly recommended!
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
First of all, Happy Early Bday to my MIL - it's tomorrow, but just in case I don't post...
I am really looking forward to a class that I will be taking this weekend with my friend Val at the Georgia Quilt Show. It's a wool beads class. Aren't they cool?? This will blend my beading and knitting interests together, so I am quite excited about that. You all might just get a wool beads bracelet or necklace from me for Christmas this year...
Saturday, October 11, 2008
First let me say that an *entire* tree did not fall on our driveway, but more like 1/3 of a tree - a very large branch. Secondly, I did hear it fall, because I was up after getting home from the Thrashers game uploading photos from our Seattle trip back in July because Snapfish has a 50-prints-for-50-cents sale going on, and I wanted to get some printed. This was probably around 2 am. I heard something large and heavy sounding fall down in our front yard - like the sound of a large log being dropped on the ground. Being so dark out and sorta freaking out like somebody might be outside, I just stopped typing and listened, and didn't hear anything further, so figured we would check it out in the morning. The cat did wake from a dead sleep and ran to the window to look out. I don't know that he could actually see anything, since it was actually in the driveway on the side of our house, not in the front yard. This is what we saw when we looked out of our upstairs hall bathroom window this morning:
I think it's manageable...we just need to give ourselves some time to cut some smaller branches off and maybe drag it parallel to the bushes to get our cars out today.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Sidebar - my friend John sent me a fun little animated clip today. Take a peek if you've got 10 minutes and decent bandwidth to watch this cute short: http://www.vimeo.com/1084537.
Back to the books and sort of half paying attention to the VP debate...
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Monday, September 29, 2008
I'm starting a list of things to do while we're up there. If you have any activities that I should definitely not miss, please send them my way. Or if you live up there now and want to meet up with us, let me know! We are planning to be in the city at least 2-3 days - more if we can afford it or find a spot on a friend's floor. On my list so far: the Parade (of course!), MOMA, Lombardi's Pizza (note to self: bring appetite AND cash), maybe a show or two (Radio City Music Hall's Christmas Spectacular, Broadway, Birdland, Late Night with Conan O'Brien?), and a couple of fave shopping spots we discovered on our last trip (Pearl River Mart, Manhattan Portage, Rizzoli Bookstore, etc.)
My friend Val and potentially her DH are interested in heading up that way too, so we've got a carpool going at this point. If we drive, we may stop halfway and stay with some of her family. Also, DH has found a spot on the way that he wants to stop and see - check out his post from Sunday. All recommendations welcome!
Friday, September 26, 2008
Not much going on this week. We got Wii Fit last weekend, so that helped me "train" for the 5K this past week (haha). But truly, it's been a lot of fun and I'm really enjoying the exercises on it. I'm up to my ears in Homecoming planning for the GTBAA, helping with planning a nWW meeting in a week and a half, and trying to study! On top of that, gas shortages around here have put driving anywhere at a premium, so for the most part we've been trying to limit our trips and consolidate errands wherever possible. Thank goodness DH and I are able to carpool!
Sunday, September 14, 2008
I found out about a camera warehouse moving sale through my friend Val, so DH and I went with her early Sat. morning. There were maybe 15 people there when we got there (we got there about 20 min early, and the sale had already started), and who knows how many (LOTS!) by the time we left about an hour and a half later. Val got a great deal for some glass filters, mat board, light box, and some other camera stuff. I went without really expecting to get anything, but walked out with an awesome deal on a discontinued Epson compact photo printer for $3 (although it was missing a power adaptor that I am now working on trying to find), a brand new Nikon SLR camera case for $10, a random but cool looking leather case that once held an old camera for 50 cents, a couple $1 packs of 20-count double-sided 4x6 photo paper, and some free lens cleaning papers thrown in there for free. It was certainly interesting just to walk around an peek into the continually multiplying cardboard boxes that magically kept appearing, row after row, in their parking lot. So now I just need a camera to go into that camera bag! I noticed that the Nikon D90 kit is now in stores - they appeared in Sunday ads today. I should go by and check one out in person. Now just waiting for the body only to come out, since the lens I want is not the one that comes with the kit...
I also finally committed to designing a few jewelry pieces for myself using the cool "disco balls" that Val introduced me to. I was finally able to get my hands on some at the bead show we went to a few weekends ago, I just hadn't figured out what I wanted to make with them. They are a cool mix of antiqued, bali-looking silver filgaree and Swarovski crystals. I made a v-shaped chain necklace with the blue one and a pendant and earrrings with the purple and fuschia ones. I still have one more champagne-colored one that I haven't decided what to make with yet. The photos don't really do them justice - they are way sparkly and I love them!
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
(Just out of curiousity, I searched for "100" on Google images. Click here to see what it gave me.)
In other news, today I received an end-of-fiscal-year bonus! That was a nice surprise. And it puts me in a better position to get that digital SLR camera that I have been eyeing to replace my old (but trusty) 1.3 megapixal Sony Cybershot that I have had since 2002. I just found out this week that the Nikon D90 is coming out within the next month, so my loyalties have changed from the D80 to the D90 now. I am also trying to decide which lens to get. My friend Val recommends the Nikkor 18-200 mm VR (vibration reduction) lens as a good multipurpose lens, and that way I won't need to be switching between two smaller ones. Any thoughts or advice out there? Please leave a comment or email me! Thanks a bunch!
Monday, September 1, 2008
We had a great time at the Decatur Book Festival yesterday. "FREADOM" was one of the cute t-shirts that we saw someone wearing, with the "READ" part in red. I thought it was clever!
We got to hear two great authors speak - Patrick McDonnell, who is the creator of Mutts, and Andy Runton, creator of Owly. Both spoke and showed us how to draw their main comic strip characters. McDonnell "read" (there are no words, only images) from his new book, South, and donated his sketches to the local animal shelter. Runton spent a good deal of time showing kids how to draw animals using simple shapes and encouraging them to explore their dreams if they liked to draw. He also gave out old "Free Comic Book Day" comic books of Owly, and showed everyone how to read Owly's emotions, since his strip is images only. It was really fantastic to hear these authors speak about the characters they created, especially after I have only read them in print all these years. It was neat to hear them come alive through the creators' mouths and to learn that my perception of the characters are pretty spot on!
We enjoyed a late lunch at one of our favorite Decatur watering holes - Brick Store Pub - and lo and behold, Owly made an appearance in my hummus plate! (See bottom right photo above.) Okay, so we moved around a few cucumber slices, but still, I thought it was a great likeness!
Friday, August 29, 2008
|GAMEDAY! GT vs JSU|
DH and I attended the GT football game last night - click on Buzz above to see more photos. It was a great kick-off for the new season and a new coach. We got to see the triple option in play, and it seemed to work pretty well, at least against Jacksonville State... We also got to see the new uniforms in person, and yes, the "old gold" pants are as mustard-greenish as they appear in photos. DH has decided to give this color the name "mold gold," which I think describes it pretty well! I did notice, however, in looking at the big screen in the stadium, that they do look more like the classic, tannish-old-gold color on the jumbotron, so maybe it will look good on TV. One can only hope. My personal opinion is that anything is better than white pants. For many reasons that I will not get into.
The Mellow Mushroom down the street from my office finally opened up this week, so we went by for lunch today - pretty standard MM pizza, and pretty good service. I am looking forward to the long weekend. I have more ARE studying to do, and DH and I plan to head downtown for a break tomorrow to watch the Dragon*Con parade (that's some great people-watching there!), so I should have some good photos from that. Sunday we plan to stop by the Decatur Book Festival, as one of my fave comic strip creators, Patrick McDonnell of Mutts fame, will be in the Children's area on Sunday at noon. Might actually take some of my Mutts books to see if I can get a least one signed!
Oh, I forgot to mention my WIP update - I did finish my wedding present for C&M last Sunday (the closing day of the Olympics, no less!), but I now need to clean it, then figure out how I will package it and mail it to Denmark. I have photos, but don't want to spoil the surprise until C&M get it, so photos later. But I will say that I was very pleased with how it turned out!
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Monday, August 18, 2008
As an aside, I learned today that trampolining is an Olympic sport! You can seriously get a medal for jumping on a trampoline? Huh? (Yes, I know that they are truly better athletes, than me!)
Monday, August 11, 2008
Friday, August 8, 2008
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
In other news, our downstairs room continues to dry out. The dehumidifier we bought last week is working like a champ. We cleaned up more gutters last weekend and did more work in the yard, so hopefully that helps improve the yard drainage if more showers pop up this week. Two waterproofing contractors have come out and priced the work within $50 of each other - amazingly close estimates! So I hope we'll get this taken care of this month. Also, a old Tech friend and an aunt of above newly-wedded-moving-to-Denmark friend have both been diagnosed with cancer in the last week, so my thoughts and prayers are with both of them as they begin their treatments.
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
In other news, I was thrilled to find out at work today that my name has been published into a book on Atlanta architecture! It's on page 202 of City by Design - an architectural perspective of atlanta! I am listed as part of the architecture team on the World of Coca-Cola, and a beautiful photo of it is on the cover, too! I am very happy for my firm and the team, as they deserved some credit after all of our hard work on this building: http://www.panache.com/CBD/cbd_atlanta.html.
And then the news of our dear former Tech baseball player, Mark Teixeira, getting traded to the Anaheim was sad news, but I hope that he does well with the Angels. I'll miss getting to see him at the Braves games, as he was my current favorite. :(
Sunday, July 27, 2008
Monday, July 21, 2008
We spent a fabulous week in Seattle! The weather was perfect and cool for the most part - a very enjoyable break from the Atlanta heat. We got to see a lot of sights, and of course enjoyed the family reunion aspect and my cousin's wedding! For more photos, click on me and DH above. We stayed in a rented house just north of the University of Washington campus, known as the University, or U-District. We were able to walk around their beautiful campus several times and enjoy the neighborhood farmer's market on Saturday morning. Some of the sights we got to visit include: Seattle Center, the Space Needle (didn't go up), Snoqualmie Falls, North Bend (home of where Twin Peaks was filmed), Everett Boeing Plant, Experience Music Project/Sci-Fi Museum, Olympic Sculpture Park, Bellevue Botanical Garden, Seattle Public Library, The Chapel of St. Ignatius (outside only), The Edgewater Hotel (where my cousin's wedding was held), just to name a few spots. We did a great walking tour on Friday evening with a private tour guide that one of my cousins arranged - that was great too. I really enjoyed spending time with cousins on my Mom's side - all 8 of us were able to make it this time. And on top of all that, we managed to look up one of our GT classmates and have dinner with him and his wife. They joined us on the walking tour too and learned a few things about Seattle that they didn't know. Anyway, now back in the heat of the Atlanta summer and wishing I was back in 70-degree weather...
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Friday, July 4, 2008
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Monday, June 23, 2008
So this means I stay the course on test version 3.1. Which means I should probably aim to take all of the other sections at least once (and hopefully only once) before Dec 15th, so I can make sure I have the six-month cushion in case I have to retake a section before the test changes completely over in June 2009. Otherwise I would have to convert to the new test, which might mean retaking certain portions entirely. But I am not going to do that!
1 down, 8 to go...