Eat. Play. March.

Moving right along

Seems time is moving quicker than I expected. It’s hard to believe it is already the week before Thanksgiving. Round and round we go where it stops no one knows.

Not much to report really on the home front. The Kid is keeping us on our toes with things to do and stuff to buy and cooking and cleaning. We made a trek to IKEA 2 weekends ago and picked up some self assembly items for his room. Oh and of course we had to have meatballs while we were there. Well The Hubby and I had meatballs, The Kid had chicken fingers.

Well I started this post 3 days ago and got super sidetracked. So let’s play catch up.

Sunday night we had our monthly Dinner party get together. Our friends made some fabulous short ribs. And set the fanciest table!

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Tuesday night we had the pleasure of attending the 2nd grade Concert at The Kids school. It was thankfully only a half hour. The songs were all about Freedom, they were interesting, the worst part of it was all of the parents standing up and filming on their phones. One parent in particular struck me as odd whenever he would hold his arm up and wag his finger in the air. This wasn’t a U2 concert it was second graders.

I’m updating this post from the car as The Hubby and I are on our way to a Winery weekend in the Finger Lakes. We made these plans back in May long before The Kid showed up. It was touch and go on whether we would still he going but we decided it would be good for us. It’s a Daddy only weekend, The Kid is with another family and our Nephew is watching the puppies.

More to come from the Wineries!

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Absentee Father

I know I know I have been neglecting this here blog thingy lately. It’s just been a busy couple weeks at home and at the office. The middle of the month found me covering for a coworker for 2 weeks and it was just unbelievably crazy. On the home front most of the time has been spent assimilating the Family into structure, rules, and schedules. By the time I get home from work, get dinner finished, and sit on the couch I just want to lose myself in the few shows we watch and need to catch up on.

 

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I took this picture a couple weeks ago when we decided to take a family walk to the park. It was a beautiful sunny Sunday and the park is only a couple blocks away. The best part was all the energy the Little One expended running and playing.

 

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The week before Halloween The Little Ones school had an Ice Cream Social sponsored by the PTO. They had pumpkin decorating, a costume parade, ice cream sundaes, and Bubble Mania. Essentially it was this guy who was a big kid who like to blow bubbles, but not just ordinary bubbles but Ginormous bubbles, some big enough to hold a small child in them. It was entertaining to say the least.

 

 

 

IMG_3036This past weekend was just as busy as the rest. Friday night we all went trick or treating in my Dads neighborhood, then hung out there for a bit before heading home. As you can see The Hubby and I dressed up along with The Little One. I was surprised at how many of the people giving out candy were happy to see us dressed up as well.

This weekend also brought some colder temperatures, rain, and what seemed like gale for winds. Normally this wouldn’t catch my attention but it also happened to be the First Annual Softball Tournament in honor of my Sister-In-Law who passed away in September. We spent some time down there just having family time, neither The Hubby nor I play softball but 2 of my brothers and my sister do. Sunday was definitely the better of the days with just the wind, as Saturday had the rain. The best part is we won a raffle prize so go us!

Not really much else to report, there has been a lot of just doing things we need to do for The Little One. The Hubby and I have each had a night out with friends alone, and managed to get a babysitter to have a night out together at our friends Halloween party Saturday night. We have our first Parent/Teacher conference coming up, and then the Holidays are just around the corner.

I promise to start blogging more, and it won’t all be about The Little One, but there will be some posts that will speak to him and the things we do as a family.

Field Trip!

So The Hubby and I took a family field trip with The Boy and our nephew to the NY Botanical Garden for the Haunted Pumpkin Garden exhibit.

Overall it was a good day out for all of us. The Boy was bored then not bored. Hot then not hot. He earned the new nickname Captain Contradiction.

Here’s a few pictures from our visit.

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This is Eric. He was in charge of the Creepy Creatures show. Eric is from the Bronx. I didn’t ask I just knew by the sound of his voice.

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This is Eric showing off his snake. Enough said.

Well October is here, and along with that comes the change of seasons, and  the weather as always has been unpredictable.

Now’s as good a time as any to  catch you up on what’s been happening, a couple weeks ago we had the pleasure of attending the wedding of our friends Mat and Jim. It was a beautiful day (although a little hot for September), the ceremony was short and the reception was wonderful. The best part was meeting some new friends, Maureen and Jim, and seeing some long time friends, namely Mat and Holly.

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Here are The Hubby and I enjoying a beverage in the Casino Resort we stayed at for the wedding.

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This is The Hubby and I and our friend Holly (one of the prettiest women in Northern NY that day)

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Here come the Grooms

IMG_2905And of course there was cake – even if it was fruit filled.

Drum Corps rehearsal season is upon us which means it’s time for Election of Officers for the new year. I am running for Drum Major again this year and will start Shaking babies and Kissing hands to get the votes needed to win.

Mabel is settling in nicely, she and Duncan had a little scuffle in the night a couple nights ago. I’m not sure what exactly happened but it was dark and one of them ran into the other and they went sliding across the bedroom floor. They seem to be no worse for the wear though Duncan has a little cut on his neck and ear.

We had dinner with Dad this weekend and he had some news to share with us. Seems he, who has trouble answering his cell phone, has met a new Lady Friend over the internet I guess. Though he didn’t really say for sure that’s where he met her. He wanted to see if we were okay with it. We told him of course we were and all we want was for him to be happy.

Well if you made it this far I guess you get the biggest news report of all. See my Dad wasn’t the only one with a surprising turn of events.

This past weekend The Hubby and I became Dads. Well Foster Dads if you want to get technical. The goal is adoption and hopefully this will piece of the puzzle will move along quickly. This was a rather fast moving placement, though it’s been 6 1/2 years that we have been working on it. We were initially approached back in July asking if we were interested, and on paper it looked good. Fast forward a couple weeks and as usual we heard nothing. Just before we left on the cruise they asked again if we were interested, and again a couple weeks went by and nothing.

We finally got the call a few days after my Sister-in-Law passed away that we were selected and they wanted to work on making all the necessary arrangements for him to move in with us. With all the weddings we had we managed to meet DJ for the first time for a quick dinner together, then a few days later we spent the day together. He moved in this past Friday night and it has been going well. I’ve not used the phrase “Use your Inside voice” so much in the last couple days as I have in my whole adult life so far.

So off we go embarking on this new adventure, now to just figure out who is Dad and who is Daddy.

Maybe she’s born with it

Maybe it’s Mabelline.

We’ll technically it’s Mabel.

Or should I say technically it’s Mable but I don’t like that spelling.

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She arrived last Friday as we agreed to “Foster” her. Since Sandy passed last month the house just hasn’t been the same, but with the cruise we had booked we knew it was going to be a bit of time before we got another dog.

Duncan wasn’t himself and I think was a bit lonely. We visited with a couple other fosters a couple weeks ago but none of them had that spark we were looking for.

Enter Mabel. She came in and acted like she owned the place. She and Duncan get along really well and he seems to be getting back to his old playful self. So we told the greyhound adoption group president on Monday that we were keeping her. I believe my exact words were, when asked for a foster write up for the website, “Here’s your write up on Mabel. She’s staying here. Thank you and goodnight.”

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Thank you for being a friend

Not just words, but words that I truly live by.

Today, just six short months after we said goodbye to my Mom, we had to say goodbye to another wonderful woman in our lives, my Sister-In-Law.

Taken way too soon from us and way too young at 41, my Brother and the rest of the family are still in utter shock and awe.

Hug those you love every chance you get. I know I will

Thank you for being a friend, traveled down the road and back again
Your heart is true, you’re a pal and a confidant
I’m not ashamed to say, I hope it always will stay this way
My hat is off won’t you stand up and take a bow

And if you threw a party, invited everyone you knew
Well you would see the biggest gift would be from me
And the card attached would say

Thank you for being a friend

Thank you Christine, for being a Wife, Mother, Sister, Daughter, Friend. You will be missed as much as you were loved.

christine

Back on Dry Land

IMG_2243And once it begins the end is inevitable.

It seemed to take forever to get from parking the car to actually being on the ship last Sunday. The previous passengers were still disembarking when we arrived at the Cruise Port around 11:30 am, which wasn’t a good sign to me. Drop the luggage, and then it was on to the Line Ride. Once we checked in, it was off to a room where we waited, and waited, and waited until it was finally our turn to board.

Sunday was a bit of a blur, get on board, eat, drink, unpack, drink, eat, then sleep. We did manage to get a group shot in from a fellow passenger who would quickly become someone we saw repeatedly over the course of the week. As we got farther into the day the Cruise Director and Captain (who we could barely understand, damn Italian accent) made the announcement that the due to the path of Hurricane Cristobal we would have to change the Ports of Call for the week. So instead of going to Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay, and Freeport, we were going to stop in Port Canaveral FL, Nassau, and Freeport. Eh whatever, I’m on a cruise and not at home.

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Monday and Tuesday were still Sea Days, we did a lot of nothing. Well unless you count eating, drinking, eating, and drinking nothing. As is usual for a sea day there wasn’t a chair or hammock to be found at the Adults only Serenity area on Deck. That being said it seemed as thought around 3 or 4 in the afternoon spots seemed to open up so we made the best of it and staked our claim for some pre dinner swimming, sunning, and hottubbing. With all the downtime this week I was able to read 2 3/4 books.

 

 

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Wednesday was our first of 3 Port Days in a row. We were supposed to dock in Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos for the day but instead we sidled up the Florida coast in Port Canaveral. Yes I did get on a cruise ship in Baltimore only to make the first stop in Florida. Like I said before, we were on a cruise ship and weren’t home. If that is my biggest complaint so be it. The Hubby and I and our friends parted ways for the day, we weren’t really interested in getting off the boat and they had a couple things in their mind they wanted to do. The Hubby and I spent all of 5 minutes on dry land, we got off the ship took one look and got right back on. This proved to be the best option as everyone else got off and we had the Pool Deck pretty much to ourselves for the afternoon.

We did decide on night 1 that we were going to go to the GLBT or Friends of Dorothy meetings whenever they were. Funny thing is with Carnival they change the time and meeting place every night, and I think one night they didn’t even have one listed in the “Fun Times” daily schedule of activities. And not surprisingly the first few nights it was just The Hubby and I and our Friends there. Oh wait, there was another couple that showed up, sat on the other side of the room, and proceeded to ignore us. Oh well. A few other guys joined us as the week went on and we had fun.

Thursday was our second port day, again in a different port than originally planned. We ended up in Nassau instead of the Private Island Half Moon Cay. The Hubby and I have been to Nassau a few times and decided to at least get off and walk around a bit, maybe buy a couple souvenirs. Nassau was just as we remembered it, but a little bit different. They are well known for their Straw Market which the last time we saw it was just a hut with stalls in it. They have since upgraded to a wooden structure and solid concrete flooring. But the outside was new the inside hadn’t changed.

Thursday night we decided to dine at the specialty restaurant onboard the ship called Davids. It’s a small additional fee to dine there but they food is different from the main dining room food. The menu consists of appetizers, sides, and then a selection of Steaks, Lamb, Chicken, or Fish entrees. We enjoyed ourselves, the food was delicious, the company was great, and the waiter was HOT! The picture below is from the restaurant. We sat upstairs under David’s elbow.

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Friday was the last port day and the only original port we had on the schedule when we booked Freeport. This is another port we had been to and decided that we were definitely NOT getting off the ship. The port looked a little more built up since our last visit but not enough to peak our interest. Instead we again had free reign over the pool deck until the thunder and lighting started. It never rained but it was enough of a cloud cover we decided to just pack it in and do other things. We left port at 1 in the afternoon so the ship activities resumed in full force. So off I went to try my hand at Bingo. Bingo was one of Mom’s favorite hobbies, as long as I can remember she went every Monday, rain or shine. I had talked to my Dad earlier in the week when we were in Florida and he told me I had to play, so I did. This was the bet deal as it was 5 games for the price of 1. I came close on games 2 and 3, then on game 4 I was 1 number away. I looked at the card and saw it had my Mom’s Birthday Numbers (8 and 26) and her Anniversary Numbers (8 and 17) on it. I ended up winning $130 on that card, I was a happy man!

Saturday was the usual Sad day as it was the last sea day and meant we were heading towards home. We were prepared for the pool deck being mobbed so we meandered up another deck and camped out on the side of the ship. This put us closer to the Water slide which we took advantage of for a 3rd day on the trip. Later in the afternoon we headed to Tea Time in the dining room, our second time on the trip. They serve tea and pastries and cucumber sandwiches. After tea and before dinner we went back to the room and packed up our suitcases, we had some time to waste before dinner.

After dinner we met our new friends ( the one I mentioned who took the pic) for a drink. Which turned into 2 hours (for the 2nd or 3rd day of the week) of just bullshitting. Turns out Michelle and her Husband Dale (HOTTIE) lived at some point in their lives local to where The Hubby and I live, and where our Friends who were traveling with us lived. Dale is a lawyer and Michelle is a Stay at Home Mom and volunteer. They were a breathe of fresh air on the cruise as they just got us. During one conversation Michelle said “Can I ask you a question?” That question was “when you first saw Dale did you think he was Gay? Can you tell just by looking? Our answers were a resounding No, and Yes, then we explained Gaydar to her. The next thing we knew it was midnight, it really felt like they were old friends of ours. We will keep in touch via the Face Space.

To sum it all up we had a great time, but we also realized that all of the reasons we left behind Carnival as a cruise Company were still out there and that we would definitely be sticking to Royal Caribbean or Celebrity in the future.

 

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