Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Sad but True

I've become one of 'those' people, you know...the ones who put outfits on their dogs. I honestly couldn't resist when I saw the Christmas costumes marked down to 50% off...I couldn't pass up such a great deal. Of course, they say you're only truly getting a good deal if you're buying something you would have bought at full price. Oh well...I think the pictures speak for themselves!

Look, it's Dinah, Santa's long-lost Reindeer!

And of course Ditto, Santa's little helper

Friday, December 19, 2008

Duke & Honey

A few weeks ago I had an opportunity to take some photos of two golden retrievers. Since school and life have been so busy lately, I just now got a chance to process all the photos. These dogs were so sweet, they are best friends and I think it shows. I'm happy to have these completed and I can't wait to get them returned to the client. My snow day has been very unexpectedly productive and it feels good to be getting things checked off my list!

Winter's Welcome

One of the very best things about being in the educational field in Michigan: SNOW DAYS!! Granted, these days have to be tacked onto the end of the year, but there's just something wonderful about getting an extra day off for what would have been the last day of school before break. Of course since I'm only a sub, this means no pay for me...but I'm OK with that.

Michigan is getting pelted today. We've already had about 3-4" since 4:00 a.m. and as I look out my window right now, I can see a steady snowfall covering the tracks the dogs have made. Even Eastern closed campus today, which NEVER happens. You can imagine my surprise when I checked my email this morning and saw this message: "Eastern Michigan University is closed today (Friday, Dec. 19) due to the weather." Another weird thing happened today too. We were listening to the weather channel this morning for updates and the local emergency broadcast cut in with a message, "The Ann Arbor area is at a stage yellow winter weather alert level," which was followed by information about the hazardous roads and extra driving time. This is just weird. I've lived in Michigan for over 15 years and not once have I heard such a message. I think the big concern is the ice because it really does complicate things...but still, an emergency alert message for a snow storm??

So of course I had to take a few pictures this morning. Unfortunately I don't have my good camera because I left my battery charger in MD and both my batteries have since died, but my camera phone does OK with enough light.

Winter has certainly made herself welcome, even before she's technically supposed to be here. She's even sitting in our chairs:

The weight of the snow and ice caused our bushes to spread out so you can barely see the path to our front door. Of course this is pre-shoveling.

Even Santa, who normally enjoys a rather sheltered existence under the porch received his fair share of snow with this storm.

And last but not least, the dogs have to be mentioned. Ditto has always liked the snow, she scampers right our into it and begins the work of making tracks through the yard. Sometimes she even sticks her nose into the snow and makes a wuffling sound like she's snorting. It's always funny to me that her normally white-looking coat doesn't quite look white next to the snow.

And then there's Dinah with the short legs and low, low body. She does not enjoy the snow. She stands at the door and gives me an imploring look when I make her go outside. This morning her legs basically disappeared in the snow, which was pretty darn funny, poor dog!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Winding Down

My semester officially ended today, which is a tremendous relief! I'm hoping I ended up with all A's, but there are two classes that are hanging in the balance between A's and B's. More than anything I am happy it's over. This was one very hectic semester and I made it through in one piece. What a nice thought that I don't even have to think about school again until next year!

Christmas is only nine days away! We went and got our tree this past weekend, which was a lot of fun. For once we weren't the ones having a family tiff.

As we were cutting our tree down there was a family walking around near us. They were going back and forth about which tree to get and then the teenage daughter said to the mother, "why are you acting like this," at which point the mother said, "I'm sick of you guys picking on me...no one gives a crap anymore" and then she started crying. Around that time, the father walked over to the pair and said, "will you guys cut it out, this is bullshit!" I felt kind of sorry for them and was happy we weren't experiencing that kind of stress. Our tree is huge this year but with the use of our handy tools, cutting it down was a piece of cake.
On our way out we passed a father and son who had come to the conclusion they had the wrong saw blade. We could tell they were getting frustrated so we offered to let them use our blade. The father was coaching his son all through the process of cutting the tree. He kept calling him "buddy," which was truly adorable." With the right blade, they had their tree cut in about five minutes and all seemed happy.

This is such a busy time of year for us. We have my niece's 2nd birthday on Dec. 20th, a Christmas party on Dec. 21st, Christmas itself, which is also Michael's birthday, our big family Christmas on Dec. 28th, and then our wedding anniversary on Dec. 29th! With all that (and then some) on the to-do list, I can see that next year will be here in no time...bring it on!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Do You Wanna' Be a Drummer?

My neighbor has recently taken up learning how to play the drums. This is an interesting endeavor, to say the least. From over here, all I can hear is a steady, if annoying thumping noise. I think all the nuances are drowned out along the way. I'm not really bothered by the noise, it's sort of like a methodical thud in the background of my life, to which I've become more or less desensitized. He sure is dedicated though, the "music" just keeps going and going. That reminds me of that Energizer Bunny commercial from a while back where the bunny would drum endlessly. I sort of feel sorry for the people who live with him though...my neighbor, not the energizer bunny!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Service Complete!

At long last, I'm done with jury duty!! If you're interested in reading about the case I was on, check out this article. They do a much better job of summing up what was a very long, complicated, and convoluted story than I ever could.

Needless to say, I am 1000 times relieved to have this trial over with; however, I will say that I have learned a lot over the past several weeks. For one, I've learned that I am capable of doing more than I think I can do, and that my life really wasn't that stressful before! :) I've also learned so much about the law and about the proceedings of court cases. There were many interesting moments, mingled with many moments too dull to describe. Overall the experience was a positive one I won't soon forget.

Now it's time for me to "bite back" and play a major game of catch up with school. I've done pretty well keeping it all together, but I do have much work to catch up with. There are only a few weeks of school left and I can already imagine how sweet the recoup time will be!

In other news, we welcomed a new family member yesterday! My niece, Lydia Grace was born at 4:26 p.m. So far everyone is doing well and she is so sweet!