Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Folks, there's a lot going on around here! I actually recently found myself telling someone that I'm looking forward to winter just so things will slow down a bit. You know how that works...things are busy, busy, busy all spring/summer/fall and then winter rolls around and POOF! Time slows down again. I like that. Of course by February I'm so stir crazy and ready to get outside that I start writing posts like this one, but still, I'm tired now. I need rest.

We're starting to get ready for our vacation this year and after months and months of planning, our journey is right around the corner. Talk about rest! I can't wait! At the same time, with vacation just a little over a week away, we're now trying to squeeze everything into these last couple of days just to get it in before we go. You never know what October could bring in the Northeast. For all we know we could come home to snow and lots of it! Anyway, yes, it's been busy. Here are the highlights:

Troy Night Out came and went very quickly this month. Lots of prep went into this one, and I don't just mean here at the shop. Troy is celebrating its quadricentennial and we were loaded up with lots of little festivals and extra events to mark the occasion. I accidentally discovered this guy's paintings and I'm absolutely, totally, 100% in love. Plan on seeing some of his stuff at the shop next year if I can squeeze him in. Love it. Especially the carcass paintings. Also, don't forget about Empty Bowls this weekend. Mark Sunday on your calendar and I hope to see you there!

I took a trip with my mom and grandmother to Fo'Castle Farm and loved every minute of it. This place is perfect for a mini day trip. If you're in the area and looking for a nice little place to have lunch and do some shopping, check it out. They're totally prepared for fall in the gift shop. The colors are quite spectacular.

I have a mini appointment with Glenn tomorrow night to have a little something done. Back when I was in college, my mom bought me a book full of symbols and their meanings, and there was one set of symbols that really caught my attention. I dog-eared the page back then, marking it for the day when I'd get it tattooed on my body. That time is now. Not sure if you can read the text underneath them, but they symbolize the four seasons from the viewpoint of vegetation. Here's the little blurb about them from the book:

"The four designs in the illustration represent seasons from the viewpoint of the vegetation. Spring shows young sprouts beginning to rise from the earth, in a pattern resembling a solar head. Summer, like uplifted arms, represents full-blown plants receiving the light of the sun and flourishing; it also resembles the cup that summer harvest fills with wine or juice, running over at the rim. Autumn's cup is reversed. The juice runs out, the cup turns down, the reversed cross represents the savior (seed) returning into the earth for a period of dark sleep before the resurrection. Winter depicts the seeds dormant underground, covered by a snow blanket, awaiting a new season of sun and sprouting."

I like that. Anyway, these little buggers are heading onto my wrists. Pictures to come when it's done.

Speaking of tattoos, Alex reminded me that I never posted the "after" photos of my sleeve. I can't believe I'd forgotten! So sorry! Here it is, all 23 hours worth of work and I couldn't love it more!

Took my sister to see Margaret Cho for her birthday over the weekend. I'm not a huge Cho fan, really, but I haven't laughed that hard in ages. Wow. She had two opening acts who were equally fantastic and we were seated in the front row, right in the center, so we had the best seats in the house. I'm so glad we went. Not only was it a great time, but I rarely get to spend time with Carly without spouses or kids around and it was nice to have some "adult" time.

Ben and I are trying to spend more time together recently as life gets in the way far too often. He whooped my butt at mini-golf (54-67...OUCH!) and I whooped his right back at Scrabble (I can't recall the score). We owe each other the opportunity to break the tie and we haven't decided if it'll be settled in darts or Tetris. Only time will tell. Not an interesting bit of information for you readers, I know, but I had to rub it in a little. Heh.

Ahhh, I think that's about it. Can this post be any longer???

Sunday, September 27, 2009

oh my

I'll take one of each, please! Definitely a new favorite shop.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

birthday, part deux

Two birthdays in a row!

Today marks my sister Carly's birthday, and I wouldn't be a good sister if I didn't embarrass the crap out of her here on the old blog. Though we're six years apart and the first half of our lives together were, uh, rocky (typical sibling rivalry), we get along splendidly now. She's an amazing mother and friend and life just wouldn't be the same without her. So happy birthday, C-bomb! Hope this one is a great one!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Birthday spankin's

(had to hijack this shot from his blog)

I wanted to send out some birthday wishes to a new friend.

I had the honor of meeting Mr. Matthew Blodgett when I first opened the shop and we realized that we not only had a lot of things in common, but friends too! Such a small world. Anyway, Matt has quickly become a great friend and someone I look up to in a lot of ways, even though I'm old enough to be his grandmother. Heh.

So happy birthday, Mr. Blodgett! Hope this day brings you joy, laughter and lots and lots of beer.

Friday, September 18, 2009

for all you local folk

Just an early reminder about the 2009 Empty Bowls extravaganza. It falls on Sunday, October 4th from 12 noon until 3pm. Such an amazing way to support local charities and fill your belly at the same time. AND you get an awesome handmade gift in the process. How can you go wrong?

For those of you out of the area, or those who haven't heard of the Empty Bowls project before, here's how it works:

Pay ten bucks admission and get your pick from TONS of gorgeous handmade bowls donated by local pottery studios. For every ten bucks you pay, you get a bowl.

Head down the line and fill your bowl(s) with soup from local participating restaurants (this year you can try soups from The Ale House, DeFazio's, Flavour's Cafe, Italian Community Center, LoPorto's, Miele's Cafe, Patricelli's Deli, Francesca's, Illium Cafe, Muza's Diner, Potters Tavern, Tosca).

While chowing down, listen to music, chat with Mayor Harry and keep your fingers crossed that your complimentary raffle ticket is a winner!

Someone is there to wash your bowl when you're done eating, and you can go home feeling full both physically and emotionally. It's a great time that shouldn't be missed.

All donations go to the following charities: Bethany Center, Commission on Economic Opportunity, Hope 7 Community Center, Joseph's House, St. Mary's Food Pantry, The Rourke Center (my personal fave), Troy Damien Center, Unity House, Italian Community Center, Troy Larger Parish Food Pantry, Troy Y.W.C.A., St. Augustine's Food Pantry, CCRC Food Pantry, REACT Inc, St. Joseph's Church, Provisions Community and Food Store House and the Missing Link Street Ministry.

Unfortunately the project doesn't host a website, so here's the info:

Sunday, October 4th, 12p-3p
Italian Community Center
1450 Fifth Avenue, Troy

Admission is $10

Pre-Sale tickets are available in Troy at:
The Broken Mold - 284 River Street
Northeast Ceramic Supply - 621 River Street
TAP, Inc. - 210 River Street

Please contact me if you have any questions and I'll do my best to help out with what I can. Hope to see you all there!!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

gifty poo

My two little smooshies are turning another year older and I can't believe it! Seth is turning nine and Lola will be two! My how time flies! Saturday is the magic day for both of their birthdays.

Lola is always the easy one when it comes to gifts. Even though she's still just a wee little bean, she knows what she likes and clothing is at the top of that list. Yes ladies, she's already there. She loves dresses and skirts and shoes and will yank things off the racks in stores if you just roll her on by in the stroller...heaven forbid you don't stop and show her each and every item. This year, I decided to do my shopping locally (yay!), and picked up a sweet little costume for The Lo at the TightKnit craft portion of Market Saturdays. The Posh Piglet offers the sweetest little gifts for girls who love lace and frilly things. So, on Saturday afternoon Miss Lola will be sporting the following items:

Flowery headband (photo taken from The Posh Piglet's website)

Super frilly tutu (photo taken from The Posh Piglet's website)

And what fairy princess costume would be complete without fairy wings? (Photo taken from The Posh Piglet's website)

Seth is tough when it comes to gifts. He likes clothes a little, but he's more into science, Legos, army dudes, etc. Typical boy. It seems as though most people got him what he wanted, but my sister just mentioned that he's into reading the "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" books quite a bit lately. After a brief glance through these, they remind me of the "Superfudge" books or the "How to Eat Fried Worms" books that were big back when I was his age. I didn't want to be the dorky aunt who buys him books or socks for his birthday, but books are always my go-to gift of choice so I was thrilled to head on over to the Market Block Bookstore to snag two Wimpy Kid books and this little gem:

Hopefully he doesn't get into too much trouble. Sorry, Carly!

I adore shopping for these two, or any kid in general. I don't have children of my own, so this allows me to spoil them rotten with cool stuff and then hand them back, all smelly and tired, to mom and dad when the day is done. Life is good.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


You know, I never considered myself to be much of a Patrick Swayze fan and I don't know why.

He was the kind of actor who basically blended in throughout most of his career despite being completely submerged in a Hollywood world of ego, attitude and arrogance. I respect that a lot and I admire anyone who can keep their feet firmly planted on the ground while everyone else floats around in la-la land. Still, if you asked me who my favorite actors are, Patrick wouldn't have been on that list. I can't figure out why. It seems as though he was well liked and well respected, and I'll admit that my heart took a little dive last night when I heard of his passing.

This morning I took a peek at the IMDB database and ran a little search on his name. I was pleasantly surprised to find that he starred in several movies I liked (Red Dawn, The Outsiders, To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar, and City of Joy), and a few of my very favorites (Donnie Darko and 11:14...if you haven't seen 11:14, check it out...surprisingly good!). Good to know his name didn't rest entirely on Road House, Ghost and Dirty Dancing.
And, now I guess I can say that I was a fan all along.

So, rest in peace, Patrick Swayze. If there's an afterlife, I've decided to track you down and challenge you to a remake of the dance scene at the end of Dirty Dancing. It's on.

Thursday, September 10, 2009


You can zoom in a bit more over here on my Flickr page.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Good Eats

Eeeee! I had a few spare minutes this morning and popped over to Market Block Books to see what was new. I'm telling you, it's very dangerous having such a fantastic bookstore right next door to my shop. Ugh. Anyway, I headed straight for the craft books, and then to the cookbooks, my normal routine, and almost dropped dead when I saw this:

This could very well be the bible of cookbooks, in my humble opinion anyway, and from the looks of it, it definitely rocks. Alton Brown is one of my main culinary heroes, and I find him incredibly hot to boot. Weird, I know. This book is MASSIVE and wonderful and colorful and amazing and if you're lucky enough to own a copy already, please let me know if it's worth the 35 bucks the bookstore wants for it. I know I can get it cheaper elsewhere, but I'd rather support the little guy. Wowee, my day is made.

Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend! Mine was chock full and fantastic and I wouldn't have wanted it any other way. I had the chance to attend the Scottish games once again this year and it was great! Sandy and I had prime seats for the massed bands, and if I could find someplace to upload it online, I'd share the experience with you. I'd rather stay away from YouTube, Blogger's video service just plain blows, and Flickr won't allow video longer than 90 seconds. I'll see what I can do.

After the games I sat for another three hours with Glenn and finally finished my sleeve. It's amazing, guys, and I'm so glad I went with my gut and trusted someone so green. Glenn literally just finished his apprenticeship and I let him tattoo my entire upper left arm. Not a chance I'd normally take, but I'm glad I did in this case. Once the nasty, peely, scabby phase goes away I'll post lots of pictures. It's so freakin' fantastic and I can't stop looking at it.

We had the last of our summer picnics at my mom's house yesterday and it's both sad and thrilling to say goodbye to summer. I'm not a summer person by any means, but summer in the Northeast this year was unlike any other. Chilly, rainy and dark to say the very least. I can't complain because I'll take weather like that over hot and humid conditions any day. I just feel bad for the kids who couldn't swim or play outside for a good chunk of their vacations. Anyway, fall marks my most favorite time of year and I'm ecstatic to welcome it here now.

Did you do anything fun over the long weekend?