When You’re Gone

I usually listen to reruns of Howard Stern on my way home from dropping Jim off at the airport, but this past week, they had strippers on, which wasn’t too entertaining.  So I flipped on the radio station that I listen to as I was pulling away from the gate.  This song was playing…

“When You’re Gone”

I always needed time on my own
I never thought I’d need you there when I cry
And the days feel like years when I’m alone
And the bed where you lie is made up on your side

When you walk away I count the steps that you take
Do you see how much I need you right now

[Chorus]
When you’re gone
The pieces of my heart are missing you
When you’re gone
The face I came to know is missing too
When you’re gone
The words I need to hear to always get me through the day and make it ok
I miss you

I’ve never felt this way before
Everything that I do reminds me of you
And the clothes you left, they lie on the floor
And they smell just like you, I love the things that you do

When you walk away I count the steps that you take
Do you see how much I need you right now

[Chorus]

We were made for each other
Out here forever
I know we were, yeah
All I ever wanted was for you to know
Everything I’d do, I’d give my heart and soul
I can hardly breathe I need to feel you here with me, yeah

[Chorus]
So, yeah, I cried all the way home!!

What a Great Birthday I Had This Year :-)

I turned 43 GULP on Sunday, and after the stress of making sure Brighid’s party was perfect, I was glad to have a low key day planned.  Jim had given us a subscription to the theatre for Christmas, and as luck would have it, we had tickets to see Man of La Mancha on Saturday night.  My mom offered to do a sleep over with Eilis and Granuaile, so Jim and Brighid and I went to the show.  I had a lot of running to do on Saturday, but managed a shower and putting on decent clothes to go out.  After the show, we came back to the diner to grab something to eat.  Jim’s waitress was there – the same girl that waits on us every Thursday night.  Brighid got to see first hand how she pampers Jim – bringing him his big glass of water right away, already knowing what he is ordering, having his rice pudding packed to go. 

I woke up the usual time on Sunday, and Brighid and I went to Target to pick up some fall things for Eilis and Granuaile.  Brighid got a few pieces, too, and the one piece was a grey sweater that is adorable.  It will be so cute over a black turtelneck and jeans or even black slacks.  It’s just cute.  We then went and picked up Eilis and Granuaile and headed to Sakura for lunch.  The kids like it there, and they have a great soup.

We dropped the girls off at home and went to the supermarket, where we got stuff to grill.  My mother-in-law had left us with corn and watermelon, so we planned to roast the corn on the grill and picked up steak to go with it.  The corn was SUPER sweet and even though I can’t eat it, I took a big bite and chewed it until it had no flavor left – it was so good.  We set up a picnic outside and the kids had a great time running around and playing in the yard, swinging and sliding until it was getting time to get ready for bed.

The weather was so great – very fall like weather – and I got to use the camera I got as my birthday gift to take some nice pictures of the kids.  It was just a nice, relaxing birthday.  I wouldn’t mind 40 or 50 more just like it.

The Party’s Over! Brighid’s Sweet 16 Wrap Up

And I think it was a big success 🙂   It looked like everyone had fun, and even though the party officially ended at midnight, we still had a hanger on or two until almost 12:30.  The kids were all talking about it at school on Monday, so there was buzz over the weekend, and I think things went great.

We started with the family dinner at 6 o’clock, and we had a nice buffet with pretty good options.  There was Virginia baked ham, chicken marsala, baked ziti, and penne pasta with sausage and spinach in Alfredo sauce.  We had green beans almondine, salad, fruit salad, pepperoni and cheese.  The candle ceremony was a really nice tribute to some of Brighid’s favorite people.  She called them all up one at a time, gave them a flower, and they lit a candle around her cake.  We had chosen a small piece of music for each person, and that worked out nice.  When Angel came up to light Bean’s candle, Brighid got very teary and emotional over it.  And then the weirdest thing happened.  The candle kept flickering out.  Angel lit it two or three times, and after the fact, I tried several times, but we couldn’t get it lit no matter what.  It would flicker a second or two, then burn itself out.  I know Bean was there with us.

The kids began arriving about 7:15, and they all were so nicely dressed!   It was great to see them all jazzed up.  I think having it black tie optional maybe discouraged a few kids from coming, but there was a caterer who suggested it because it helped with the behavior of the kids.  I don’t know if it was the clothes, but I think this was a GREAT group.  There was no trouble from any of them.  At about 8 PM, we introduced Brighid, who was escorted in by a leprechaun.  I don’t know who looked more uncomfortable – Brighid or the little person.  His job for the evening was to hand out beads from his pot of gold to the guests as they came in and to mingle.  He didn’t do so much mingling, but made sure the kids all got beads coming in. 

The food for the kids was vitually untouched.  There were hot dogs, pizzas, hoagies, soft pretzels, and chicken tenders.  I ate one of the tenders myself, and it was delicious!   We ended up taking a ton of stuff home.  The hot dogs were half way eaten before I threw the rest away, and the hoagies were taken to the police station the night of the party, along with a big slice of birthday cake.  The chicken nuggets have been eaten over the course of the weeks since the party, both for lunches and dinners.  It’s been nice not to have to cook 🙂

The DJ, I think, was great.  We used Steve and Company, who we used for our wedding, Russell’s 50th birthday party, and Granuaile’s Christening.  He played a great range of music and the kids seem to really like him. 

I hope this was a party she’ll remember for the rest of her life.  She looked absolutely stunning in a gown that her Grandmom and Grandpop Andersen bought, with all of the beautiful jewelry accessories.  Her cake, from Duff Goldman, the Ace of Cakes from the Food Network and owner of Charm City Cakes in Baltimore, was (from what I hear) delicious, and it was exactly what she wanted.  She danced the night away, and I know I’ll have happy memories of that night until I die.

Of course, I hope Eilis and Granuaile choose a vacation or something instead for their Sweet 16 😉

Take My House, Please!

We seem to be a day late and a dollar short on the home selling thing.  After a nice trip down to FL and official word of a transfer for Jim, we put our house up for sale.  The only place I’ll be moving at this rate though is  to a padded cell.

We’ve had three people in so far, with excellent feedback from all of the agents who have shown the place.  They say it’s clean, it’s bright, it shows really well.  But no one has made an offer.  We have another person coming in on Friday night, and hopefully, with the interest rate drop, they will have mortgage money available.  And they’ll love our house.

We put new carpet in downstairs, and painted the living room and the two kid bedrooms upstairs.  I fixed up the FL room so it looks like a playroom, and we had it painted, the drop ceiling removed, and a ceiling fan installed.  It looks nice out there.  The other day, I pulled up all the summer flowers, planted 21 yellow mums (because I read somewhere that yellow puts people in a mind to buy things), and put red mulch down to offset the yellow.  It looks great outside.  We have two pumpkins on the steps, Indian corn on both doors, and a pumpkin scare crow in the one mostly empty flower bed.  Very autumnal.  I also read it’s important to keep your house seasonal looking.  Ours does, for sure.

But this is like a full time job.  I drop the kids off at school in the morning, then race home to load breakfast dishes, clean the stove and wipe the kitchen counters and cabinets down.  Then I go to each kid room to make (in Eilis’ case re-make) the beds and pick up any dirty clothes or toys or books that are on the floor.  Then I hit each bathroom with the Mr. Clean wipes and wipe down the sink, the counter, and the outside of the toilet.  I finally this morning put those Clorox toilet cleaning tablets in each toilet, and I’m hoping that will eliminate having to clean the toilet every day.  I sweep out the bathroom upstairs every day and I sweep the kitchen and dining room every day.  I run some sort of sweeper downstairs every day – usually the little one.  But if the carpet is especially fuzzy, I have to bring out the big vacuum to really pick stuff up.  And I run the sweeper in the FL room every day that the kids are out there.  And now it smells like dog out there 🙁   Not a bad dog smell, but definitely a dog smell.  I hope people are discouraged from buying the house because of it.  The real estate agents don’t think it smells, but some people won’t buy a house with a dog in it.

On days when I have time, I mop the kitchen and bathroom floors, and at least once a week, I mop the hardwood floors.  When I take Granuaile out to play, she plays while I pull weeds.  And I never let the laundry baskets get to the point where you can see the dirty clothes over the top.  The only room that really needs work is the laundry room.  My desk is a mess and there is some stuff on top of the freezer and on top of the dryer.

On a positive note, I won’t have to look far to sell some of my furniture when we move.  My mom’s friend Harry is chomping at the bit to buy my dining room set and my freezer – although I don’t know if I’m selling that.  He’s also interested in my living room set and my bedroom set – which I also don’t think I’m selling.  But he said if I am selling stuff when I move, call him first before I have a yard sale or anything. 

I have St. Joseph buried outside, updside down, with an angel marking the spot where he’s buried so we know where to dig him up from.  I have St. Joseph’s prayer card displayed in the dining room so I see it every day and remember to say a little prayer that he is working on selling the house.  I may take that to the funny farm with me so it doesn’t look like I’m talking to myself 😉