Saturday, September 22, 2012

Really Cool RAK/Birthday Present

So last Sunday night, I came home from a work dinner to find Logan freaking out with joy. I'm telling you, the kid was over the moon jumping up and down and grinning like a fool from ear to ear.  I, of course, was surprised and more than curious what could have elicited such an overwhelming display of emotion from my normally unimpressible, whatevah kind of attitudy teenager.  

Logan managed to contain himself long enough to show me what all the commotion was about.  He brought out the 8 foot reason for his elation.  Yes, indeedy.  He was the proud owner of a surfboard.  The very thing he's been asking for since early summer when our neighbor, Dave, taught him how to surf. 

I looked at Jim with wide, questioning eyes like, did you really buy him a surfboard?!?!  Jim, reading my eyes, put his hands up while shaking his head back and forth and said, "not me".  Then Logan told me it was Dave who'd bought him the surfboard.  I stood there a moment while I tried to understand that our neighbor, not a family member, not a really close family friend, but a neighbor bought my son an expensive gift like that. 

Logan explained that Dave had just brought it over and given it to him as a belated birthday gift.  Logan's birthday was earlier this month but this is a huge gift.  I couldn't believe it but there he stood in front of me with all 8 feet of proof. 

I took a walk across the street and knocked on Dave's door to profusely thank him.  But how little the words thank you seem in the face of such a hugely generous gesture.  I came back home to find Logan lying on his surfboard which he'd laid on our king size bed.  Later on I think I caught him hugging it!

Today, the boys went to the beach so Logan could try out his cool board.  The waves were a bit much but that didn't stop him.
 Here's Dave and his board.
 Here's Logan getting up on his board.
Jim rented the wetsuit for Logan today but I think we'll have to invest in one for next season and then he'll be all set for a summer of surfing. 

I sometimes take a double look at that white surfboard, at first because I'm not used to seeing such a big thing in my house, then because I can't believe Dave actually bought that for my child.

I am really, truly blessed to have such wonderful people in my life.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Project Life Products


Just a heads up for those of you doing Project Life.  I took a peek at Becky's site and she's got some core kits in stock, i.e., the Clementine and Turquoise core kits. The Cherry Edition is also still available. 

She also has journaling grid cards, blank white cards as well as coordinating cardstock cards in both sizes 3 x 4 and 4 x 6. 

I'm off to order me some.  Yay! 

Happy Shopping!!!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Michael's Rewards

Hi, everyone.
Remember how I said I was going to return the Clover mini iron the next day after I initially bought it?  Well, stuff happened and I didn't get around to returning it the next day.

In preparation for it's trip back to Michael's, I had placed the mini iron back into the white Michael's shopping bag with the receipt and left it near my door so I would remember to take it with me.  That didn't work as I forgot to take it when I left the house in the morning. 

So fast forward a few days.  Someone in my house in an effort to try to straighten up, removed the mini iron from the bag, placed it on my scrap table and tossed the receipt and bag into the trash.  Uh oh!  Without a receipt how was I going to get my nearly $20 back. 

Remembering I used my Michael's Rewards card when I bought the iron, I called the customer service number on the back of my card to try to get a duplicate receipt.  I wasn't sure they even offered that service but I thought it was worth a call to try to retrieve my $20.  Surprisingly, my call to customer service was immediately connected to a person, no automated system or even hold time.  Whoo hoo!  When is the last time that happened, huh?

I spoke to a very nice woman named Jessica who told me I didn't need the receipt, so long as I'd used my Rewards card at the time of purchase.  All I had to do was make a visit to the store, (no problem there.  I love having an excuse to visit Michael's), let them scan my card and they could make the return right at the register without a receipt.  Cool, right???

I also learned from Jessica that my status had been upgraded to Gold and she was sending me a new gold card instead of the red rewards card I was using. 

I'll admit I was skeptical thinking it couldn't be that easy but the next day (I did remember to take the iron with me that day as I left the house), I went to Mike's at lunch time as it's not far from my office.  When I got to the register, I explained to the cashier I wanted to return the mini iron but I didn't have the receipt.  Before I could finish my sentence, she said no problem and took my Rewards card.  She proceeded to make the return and gave me back cash instead of putting it back on my debit card.  A few moments later I turned around and gave her right back the money and then some (along with 2 coupons) to pay for the 6 tombow glues I was buying. 

So, remember.  Always use your Michael's Rewards card when making purchases at Michael's.  Not only does it earn you more coupons and incentives from Michael's via email, but it also comes in handy should you lose a receipt and need to return something. 

Happy Shopping!!!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Happy Birthday, Baby!

Today is my baby's 15th birthday.   Wow!  It's hard to believe he's not a baby anymore.

We had a relaxing day with absolutely lovely weather which was a nice change considering the severe storm we had yesterday that even brought a tornado with it.

For lunch today, at Logan's request, I made homemade meatballs and linguine.  That's not a regular kind of lunch around this house but it is his birthday and the birthday boy gets what he wants.  The good thing is I made plenty of meatballs while I was at it so I have dinner covered tomorrow night.  Yay!  I love when I get two meals out of one cooking session. 

Tonight, again at Logan's request, we went out for Chinese food.  The usual gang was with us Eddie, Caterina and Raja.  We had a very nice dinner and even brought home some doggie bags.

We didn't ask for this delicious dessert but our waiter brought it anyway. 
We sang Happy Birthday to him and then our waiter put his phone on speaker and played the Chinese Happy Birthday song for Logan.  By the way, it's a very pleasant tune and we were all swaying to it while we listened.  It was nearly 9 pm when I took the below picture and that's why the restaurant looks empty.  It was quite busy when we arrived.   
Logan had a happy day which is what we wanted for him.  He also got some nice presents from us and from his friends, too.

Happy Birthday to the love of my life!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Back to school

Today was back to school and the first day of 10th grade for Logan and Caterina.   They had orientation this morning and classes begin on Monday.   Neither one of them was happy to be going back which surprised me.  When I was a kid by the end of August I was eager to get back to school.  Ok, I'll admit my eagerness to return to school was mostly brought on by sheer boredom but also because I liked school and missed my friends.

And look who jumped into Logan's warm spot after he got out of bed this morning.  Gizmo managed to tuck himself in and even had his head resting on the pillow.   Too cute, right? 
Thanks for visiting.  Wishing you a great day!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Clover Mini Iron

I bought this iron tool today at Michael's.
Guess what?  It's going back tomorrow.

A friend gave me a box full of ribbon the other day and to my delight, it was mostly satin ribbon in lots of different colors.  Unfortunately, it was all tangled and terribly wrinkled.  Fortunately, I'm one of those people who enjoy untangling stuff and I was kind of looking forward to freeing my newly acquired ribbon of its tangles.  After untangling all the ribbon, the wrinkles presented a problem. Then I remembered I'd seen a mini iron presumably made for just this kind of task.

Michael's had it priced at $29.99 but I had a 40% off coupon which brought it down to $17.99.  I had high hopes this tool would make quick work of my wrinkled ribbon and was looking forward to playing tonight after dinner.  Much to my disappointment, the business end never seemed to get hot enough to rid the ribbon of it's crinks and folds.  The low setting was useless and the high setting hardly made a difference in the ribbon.

After I accidentally and stupidly touched the shaft, I realized it was much hotter than the ironing plate at the end.  I tried wrapping the ribbon twice around the shaft and pulling slowly.  That worked better as it delivered more heat to the ribbon but it was slow going and very time consuming.  After I did a few yards like that, I disconnected it and went to get my real household iron.  I finished ironing all my ribbon and then wrapped each around empty spools another friend had given me months ago.   So now, thanks to some generous friends and a little effort, I have all this pretty, satiny smooth ribbon ready to be used.  All I need now is another ribbon rack since the four ribbon racks I have are all filled.

So friends, save your money and stick to your trusty old Hamilton Beach household iron.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Governor's Island

Yesterday, we went on a new adventure to Governor's Island.  None of us had ever been there before so it was like playing tourist in my own city.  It's kind of sad I've lived here all my life and there are still things I've never done or seen. 

We got on the East River Ferry (again, something we've never done) and took it all the way downtown to Governor's Island.  Caterina had suggested going there because there was a...get this...a unicycle festival...of all things going on there.   It was a sunny and very hot day but we were armed with sunglasses and sunscreen.

I was so surprised upon arrival at the island how many people were there and how much there was to do.  There was free kayaking, mini golf, bike rentals, a graphic design exhibit in a gloriously air conditioned building, an art show and, of course, the unicycle festival which we never even got to see because it was on the other side of the island.   We followed and shared the path with innumerable bikers and found our way to a river side man-made beach with lots of picnic tables and a large tent where we enjoyed the view of lower Manhattan, people watching and some much needed beverages. 

The rectangular building is the United Nations.  I used to work 2 blocks from there.
 Here is the Brooklyn Bridge which is under construction.  Behind it is the Manhattan Bridge. 
 Here's a shot of the kids, Raja, Caterina and Logan with Tower One in the background.
 Here's a better shot of Tower One.
 This is a picture of the midtown skyline (east side of Manhattan).
  On the way back to catch the ferry home we came across this preying mantis who was trapped between a screen and window.  He must have gotten in there through a small hole but I was concerned he would die before he found his way back out.  I vandalized government property (sssshhh) and rolled the screen up to allow him to get out and we continued on.  When we got to the end of the building many yards away and I saw some bushes, I turned to Jim.  I didn't even have to say anything to him and he just started back towards the window.  The kids laughed as they said, "gee, you don't even need to talk and he knows what you are thinking".  We waited for Jim and he returned with that lucky preying mantis perched on his chest as you can see by the below picture.
Jim gently gave him a lift to the safety of the bushes and I gave Jim a big hug for saving him.
Upon docking back where we started from, we decided to go to dinner at a locally famous seafood restaurant.  Yet again, something new for me as I'd never eaten there.  While I didn't find cause for the place to be famous as the food was "eh" and the service was severely lacking, I was very grateful for not having to cook dinner. 

We had a very nice day and I think what made it even nicer for me was when we were on the ferry coming home and though we were exhausted, Jim turned to me and said he was happy we'd made a new memory that was just ours as neither one of us had ever been there with anyone else so that day and place would be forever ours.  So sweet!  Gotta love that man!