Saturday, December 06, 2008

Mmmm....smelly soap

So, Thursday night Lucas and I went to the grand-opening party of the Valley Stream location of Lush.

What? You don't know what
Lush is? I used to be a certified Lushaholic. It's soap and shower gels, bath fizzies and bubble bars, hair products and lotions. And they're all made by hand, from natural, organic ingredients. They smell good and make you feel good.

Being that it was a party, of course there were goodies. What I got for free:

*a cookie with the Lush logo on it

*an Avobath bath bomb

*a Pop in the Bath bubble bar

*a mystery massage bar

So I got about $15 worth of stuff for free! I bought many a Christmas present and induldged and got myself a Figs and Leaves bar of soap and a small piece of Spice Curls soap.

There was a DJ, so Luke was rockin' away in his stroller and flirting with the salesgirls, and I even came away with a free sample of Big shampoo.


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Are You Lean Like a Lynx?

So, Lucas LOVES puppets. Of any shape, sort or size. He cracks up at the Muppets. He loves the puppets on the Baby Einstein videos. He even loves it when I play with the puppet on his exersaucer.

He loves singing. He's even starting singing along with me when I sing. (He attempts to sing the alphabet by going "Ah, ah, ah, ah, ahhhhhh" - it's so cute I can't stand it.) He loves music and his new thing is to hit one object against another to make a sound.

He LOVES singing puppets.

So I have a theory. I want to get Cats on DVD from the library and play it for Luke.

My thinking is this:

Huge, grown-up sized puppety things

Huge, grown-up sized puppety things singing nonsensy songs

I think he'll love it.

Poor kid.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Getting My Latin On

So two weeks ago (I know, I know, I'm a delinquent blogger) I participated in the Hispanic Heritage assembly. It was really quite neat - kids from all nationalities participated. We had 2 speakers, one of which is the conductor/musical director for "In the Heights", the Tony-nabbing show of 2008. The kids sang a song from the show called "Piragua". They were singing and dancing and the MD from the show was playing piano. Knowing of my musical prowess, they asked me to play some auxillary percussion and who am I to decline small children? So I jammed on the guiro. I rocked so well, that I didn't even need cues to tell me when to come in or drop out. Each time the MD went to cue me, I was already there.

So, that makes TWO Broadway musicians I've played with.

I am sooo kewl.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder

I'm sorry I've been away so long. I was playing every weekend in a row from August until October. This is my one weekend off before my big, huge event next weekend. Luckily, after that I'm free as a bird.

But all is well in the Curly World. We're all healthy. Tom is loving student teaching. Luke is growing like a weed and I'm just hanging in there. I'm proud of us for getting this far. The end of having a full time student in the family is near!

More later I promise. More about new shows I'm watching (How did I NOT watch 'Pushing Daisies' last year????). More about my culinary escapades.

I promise!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Best. Birthday. Ever.

So not only is it a super birthday because I spent it with my baby boy. (And awesome husband) But it's restaurant week here and a dozen restaurants had 3-course prix fixe menus for $25. So I got to try this neat little restaurant Lucy's, which has a great tapas menu and had the yummiest options for each course. It was a cute little jewel box of a place, with mismatched chandeliers and a tiny, 4-seat bar. Luke LOVED staring at the lights and ceiling fans, the french doors were all open and the weather was perfect. It couldn't have been a nicer evening. I had amazing steamed mussels, organic pan-roasted chicken with the creamiest polenta I've ever tasted and warm molten chocolate cake. (If you can't eat warm chocolate cake on your birthday, when can you eat it?) Tommy hesitantly ordere a pork chop that came with figs and plums, mashed potatoes and spinach. Now, he's really a cheeseburger and fries kind of guy, so I was very happy to see him going out on a limb. He LOVED it! He said he was wary at first, but he said the food was amazing. And...he said, "We can totally come back to this place." Which I whole-heartedly agreed with, if nothing else, but to sample the crabcakes and the truffle mac and cheese. The service was amazing, my food was unbelievable and the atmosphere was perfect. Lucas was an absolute angel. Diners all around us kept commenting on how adorable and well behaved he was. Our waiter even took a photo of the 3 of us for us.Lucas decided this was the perfect occasion to start saying, "Ma ma ma ma ma" which I know doesn't really mean he's referring to me, but was wonderful to hear just the same.

And yes, there is an amazing difference in taste when you pan-roast an organic chicken!!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

I Am So Kewl

So, I listen to WFUV, Fordham University's radio station a lot. They do various fun morning stuff. The last time they had asked what would be on George Orwell's iPod since it was the anniversary of his birth. I emailed that any animal song on The Beatles' White Album would sure be there. This time they asked what would be on Alfred Hitchcock's iPod. I HAD to think of something cool. Had to. So at first of course I think of "Psycho Killer". But that'd be way too obvious. So I delve deeper. And *poof* the line "She looks like Eva Marie Saint, in On the Waterfront" pops out at me. I think of it in terms of the cover by Tori Amos of the Lloyd Cole song "Rattlesnakes". So I send off my email stating, "Curly Glamour Girlie of Her Hometown (you have to include your first name and hometown) thinks that Rattlesnakes by Lloyd Cole would be on Alfie's iPod since he loved his icy blondes and would want to carry a song that payed hommage to Eva on it." Or something like that. So I'm sitting in my office with 2 tech guys from the new software package we're moving to who are training me. And I'm listening to 'FUV not expecting anything. All of a sudden, I hear very familiar lyrics. THEY'RE PLAYING THE LLOYD COLE SONG!! I get very excited. I try explaining to the 2 guys that this makes me so freakin' cool. Then I don't let them speak after the song is over, since I know now that they're going to say my name ON THE RADIO! Not only does the coolest morning dj ever Claudia Marshall say my name, but she reads practically my WHOLE email! I think the 2 tech guys were even mildly impressed.

I felt cool for the whole morning. It even held over until the afternoon. Then I was bummed by Kelli being aufed on Project Runway.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Those (Not) Lazy, Hazy Crazy Days of Summer

The title above reminds me of a Gilmore Girls episode where they kept playing that song over and over and over again at a town festival.

But today was far from lazy.

Luke and I:

*Went to a teen production of "Thoroughly Modern Millie", whereupon I was able to show off my pristine, perfect child to my friends. Whereupon it was also Luke's first musical.
*Did laundry.
*Ran home to change and load the Lucas-bag.
*Went to my MRI where I conquered the closed MRI. (I thought I was going to have to be seriously drugged to be put in there.)
*Came home.
*Made dinner AND homemade caramel sauce for a cake I made over the weekend.

I'm beat.

And I'm lucky that Luke's so good that I can tote him just about anywhere. He LOVED the show. So much so that I had to remove him from the theatre since he thought it was an audience-participation type performance and sang along and spoke back to the actors. This kid seriously has the theatre gene.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

WalMart - Friend or Foe?

I have a confession. I heart WalMart. In a time where gas is topping $4 a gallon and coffee can go for $3 a cup, I'll take bargains where I can get them. I've even been shopping there more than my favorite store in the world, Target. I don't get why Target isn't as vilified as WalMart - should I not like WalMart as much as I do?

Not for nothing, but the staff at the ones I go to are almost always helpful and friendly. The stores are clean. The aisles are wide enough to get down with a cart. And the prices are seriously unbeatable. This is not to say I purchase everything at WalMart, but I do as much as I can there and save quite a bit of the green stuff. I bought a 4-cup coffee maker for $10. And it's a nice little stainless steel version that looks classy on the kitchen counter. I buy cute little separates there that I can wear to work - shirts for $10, dresses for $15-$20. Seriously. I mean, I love love love the Isaac Mizrahi line at Target, but $40 dresses are a little out of the family budget right now.

So what's the deal? Is WalMart a good thing? A bad thing? I know that one of the arguments is that they shut out the little mom and pop stores, but honestly, here on Long Island, there were few and far between those to begin with. And with gas rising, one-stop-shopping really makes a whole lot more sense.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Note To Self

No matter how wistfully you think of eating halvah in your childhood, no matter how yummy you think it is, no matter how on sale it is, it will no doubt give you a stomachache. (Yes, I know Kerry.)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

What We Do Every Night Pinky.....

If you've ever met Lucas, you know he's a super-smartie. I know I'm a doting mama and such, but he is, really. And if you need proof, I submit the following. Here he is trying to take over the world. We're convinced he's secretly an evil villain. He's got all the characteristics; the almost non-existent hair, the quirky wardrobe and the interesting pet (Cupid, the rattle reindeer).

So here he is, working very very hard at his evil plan:
Notice the little globe next to his control panel. It's how he chooses his targets. I asked him to spare Panama since they make such delicious coffee as well as Holland since that's where yummy cheese comes from.

And here he noticed his classified area was broken into and promptly called for security.
Notice the little button he just pushed calling for security? You think it's a simple toy that plays animal sounds and synthesizer versions of Vivaldi's Four Seasons, but once deployed, the hounds are released.

Bribery does work however, and by slipping Dr. L-Bear an ice cube I was spared tortuous punishment with the death laser.
I was recognized as being an ally and even let in on some classified information. I was given the code name "Maaahhh". We discussed future evil plots and had a happy conclusion to our meeting. I have since been made press agent for Dr. L-Bear. (Notice Cupid not far from control central on the floor.)

Sunday, July 27, 2008

First Non-Cello Sunday

It's about 5:00 p.m. est. I'm not finishing up a performance or en route home from a show. I feel naked in a way. But I had a glorious day. I was able to:

* Hang with Lukey-Luke all morning all relaxed-like.

* Try my Panamanian coffee in my one-cupper. (Which shocked the hell out of me as to how good it was - not bitter, not too strong and a nice aftertaste. Exactly what Fairway CoffeeMan described.)

* Have breakfast at Our Diner (the Infinity Diner in West Babylon, if you must know). I love that the proprietor knows us and whisks us to a booth immediately. And I love that no matter what I have, it's delicious. From corned beef hash (which I'm sure Kerry will have something to say about) to a veggie omlette to my usual vanilla egg cream, it's always tasty. Even when I take a chance on something I usually don't order like chocolate chip pancakes.

* Take an impromptu nap with a sweet smelling baby snuggled next to me.

* Finish Chuck Palahnuik's newest book "Snuff". He's such a sicko, but I'm addicted to his writing.
* Have a pot of homemade sauce simmer on the stove. It smells heavenly.

It's good to have some time to myself and a week off, but rumors are a-stirring that I'll be filling in for a few shows of "Grey Gardens" at Smithtown. Love that theatre.

Blog Roll

It sounds either like something you'd find in a chocolate assortment and pass over (like a nougat roll or something) or something you'd shout to ensure everyone you tried to amass was present.

Either way, I've turned my "Blogs I Follow" into a "Blog Roll". That way I can see who posted what and when.

Saturday, July 26, 2008


Fairway is one of those places where I always think, "I should go there more often." And I schlep there (this time with Luke) and then discover why I don't. Because it's in an area where the people are notorious for being insufferably rude. And they were. They'd stop right in front of me, or push right in front of me. Or look at me like I was a huge inconvenience when I stopped to look at something. Seriously. Rude. AND....the prices were either wonderfully affordable, or insanely overpriced.

But I did have some nice moments in there that resulted in some luxury-type purchases. The coffee guy there was wonderful, pleasant and listened to what I liked and didn't like in coffee. He steered me to a coffee from Panama that I bought a half pound of to test out. He ground it for me and asked what kind of machine I had - I said, "One of those horrible drip machines." He laughed and said "I drink about 10 cups a day, you want to know what kind of coffee maker I use?" Thinking he's going to point the way to coffee nirvana, I nodded eagerly. He held this up:
I was stymied! I have one of them at home! I can't wait to try my new custom-picked coffee in the one-cupper with his no-fail formula (2 full tablespoons of coffee + 6 oz. filtered water = good coffee).

And the cheese counter. Oh man. I could have looked for days. AND they had samples! So I bought some delicious smoked mozzerella that we had on ham sandwiches today and I picked up some Dutch Parrano (which Fairway states is a hip cheese that is a cross between a Gouda and a Parmesan) that I plan to use to make myself a little cheese and cracker snack plate later.

I also bought some halvah which is such a yummy treat that I occasionally let myself be tempted by. My Egyptian brother-in-law says that in Egypt that treated it like peanut butter and slathered it on toast. How crazy delicious does that sound?

So, all in all......not so great. The insane crowds were not worth the little gems I discovered. If I find I can't live without coffee from Panama and cheese from Holland, I'll have to go off-hours.

Or just brace myself to be insufferably rude back.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Much Ado About A New 'Do

I cut my hair. Well, actually, I paid someone to cut my hair. I went to see Rita at Supercuts (I know, I know, after having paid $120 plus tip to get a haircut, it's amazing to pay $20 INCLUDING a tip) and gave her a few pictures of some retro-ish type shorter 'dos, including
Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor. She seemed a little daunted, but she tried it. We couldn't see the fruits of her labor right away since she had combed my hair (a huge curly no-no) to cut it, but a few days later, it's looking downright cute and sassy.

I feel more like myself with the short hair (which is my usual style) and my purple toenails than I have in a real long time.

Me with longer hair
Me with my new and improved hair 'do

I really like it. Plus, it's so much easier, saves money on hair product and is now Lucas-proof.

Who Says You Can't Find Inexpensive Food in NYC?

Ann sent me this article about the latest thing in NYC - dessert trucks. I find it cool and exciting. I've been to the Dessert Truck - it was so delicious. I mean, where else are you going to get a dessert cooked by a Le Cirque pastry chef for $5???

Friday, July 04, 2008


I'm telling you - slap a "new" label on a product and I pony up like a gambler at OTB. Especially if it's remotely related to my beloved macaroni and cheese. I saw these in a commercial while on vacation in Chicago. I had to have them. Saw them this week at the supermarket and bought them - even though they weren't on sale. They're incredibly cheesy, are shaped like elbow pasta and make your fingers a delicious orange hue. Nummy num num.

While in Chicago, I happened upon Nilla Cakesters. Now the jury is very split about the Oreo Cakesters. I kin
d of like them, in as much as I love anything having to do with Oreos. And since I'm more of a chocolate girl I didn't expect to like the 'Nilla Cakersters. It was just that "new product syndrome" that drove me to buy them. But oh man. They were delicious. As the Oreo variety taste slightly manufactured (not a real homey devil's food flavor), the 'Nilla variety taste like someone just baked a yellow cake, cut out 2 circles and slathered some cream between them. Cake heaven.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

How Creepy Is This?

This woman is selling her house in West Palm Beach (need I even continue?) and putting a personal ad out there all in one fell swoop. Her ad is entitled "Marry a Princess Lost in America".


First of all, by calling yourself a princess you're scaring off any prospective normal men.

Secondly, what makes you "Lost in America"?

Third of all, isn't selling yourself ummm....prostitution?


And The Beauty Is

The Light in the Piazza. I am so so loving this show. It's my first 'real' run post-Lucas. I also really enjoy working at Smithtown again. It's the one theatre where I've done my longest run (8 weeks of Cats) and feel like a real professional. I like how professional everyone acts and just how well-run it is. (Or at least it seems to me) I also can't complain about the fact that I get paid regularly too.

But I just completely lose myself in the music when I play. I lose all self-consciousness and just for lack of a better word, feel the music. It's shows like this (and The Last 5 Years) that I enjoy playing so much.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Quick Fix Beef Burrito Skillet - Courtesy of Kraft

The good people at the Kraft kitchens came up with this recipe for those of us trying to juggle family, dinner, cleaning the house, doing shows and work. I figured what the heck, had the ingredients on hand and it was delicious. And I used ground turkey so it was a fairly healthy meal. It was the type of dish that leftovers tasted even better.

You'll Shake It Like You Just Don't Care

I discovered the Bird and the Bee on WFUV. Love them. They're a mix of trip-ish hop, lounge, tropicalia and alternative. I think of Pants whenever I hear "Polite Dance Song" since it mentions wanting to see someone's "naughty bit". That's such a Pants phrase.

But they're cool. So cool in fact that I actually plunked down a hard-earned $5 for an EP. For 5 measly songs. But they're such kick-ass songs that I didn't even mind.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Chicago - Day 4

So home we had to go, but we had had a great time, got some major relaxing done and ate a lot of yummy food that can't be found in NY. When is NY going to get a Baker's Square?? I mean, nothing on the dessert menu but pies!!!

Coming home was an airport nightmare, but what can you expect from airlines that are all scrambling at this point? I remember when Southwest's stewardesses sang little songs and were uber-friendly. Now they're just average stewardess-friendly. And why can't I board before other people? I have to balance Luke on my hip and somehow make it all the way towards the back of the plane. I have a loooooong letter to send to the folks at Southwest.

But here's a 'family photo'. Sadly, I think it's one of the first we've ever taken.

Chicago - Day 3

We visited Tommy's mom and had a real "Chicago" lunch - hot dogs and Italian beef sandwiches at a little "hot dog stand". (Calling it a 'stand' makes no sense to me. It's inside a building with tables. Wouldn't a stand mean it's outside?) Luke loves loves loves trees and flowers. I think he's going to be a budding botanist. (hee hee) That night Merry came by and we watched "Xanadu" and ate pizza (I'm a thin crust girl - who knew?) and ice cream. (Dairy Queen! There are no Dairy Queens in the NY metro area.) It was good to have just a hang-out-girls'-night together.

Chicago - Day 2

Happy Father's Day! Luke was outfitted appropriately with a shirt that said "Cool Just Like Daddy". Do I rock as a wife or what? It was a warm day, but perfect for swimming. The boys went swimming and relaxed. I took many a picture, fretted by the side of the pool about Luke swallowing pool water, getting it in his ears and sunburns. He's still in one piece, so I think it agreed with him.

Chicago - Day 1

So we finally made it to Chicago for a few days to visit Tommy's family. It was bliss. Four days of napping, eating delicious non-NY food and visiting. On day 1 we got in at Chicago-Midway nice and easy (Luke was an angel on both flights) and promptly went to breakfast. See, here's where NY is lacking. You could trip and fall in the Chicagoland area and find an amazing breakfast place. I was able to choose from like a million different skillets. But I had a chicken, asparagus, cheese skillet. It was delicious. And the babies communed with one another. They got along really well and Luke was loving the fact that he had plenty of room to sleep (poor little guy has really outgrown the cradle) and there were TONS of toys for him to play with. He probably thought he was being punished when we got back home. And, he napped on the most comfy down comforter/feather bed type thing. I may have even dozed off here and there on it.

Friday, June 06, 2008

I'm Officially A Mom

In the hour and a half between getting home from dinner at Mom and Dad's and putting Lukey-Luke to sleep I:

Installed an air conditioner in the window in the bedroom
Wrote protest letters about the use of pesticides in public schools
Cleaned up the stuff I toted home
Fed Luke his cereal
Got him cleaned up
Somehow got him to go to sleep

Now I'm officially tired. New photos of the kid soon. Promise.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Puuuure Eeeeeviiiiil

Fried oreos are the work of the devil. Plain and simple. They're too delicious not to plunk down $5 for 6 of them. And they're too wiley not to eat almost all of them at once. You'd think they'd be over-sweet or cloying, but the heat from the frying softens the cookie and the coating is just enough to make it almost cake-like. *sigh*

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Another Coincidence

Okay. So there's been quite a few coincidental things popping up in my life lately. Last weekend on Saturday, we went to Emily's memorial. It was beautiful. Tons of singing, music and memories. Luke LOVED the singing and music. He was transfixed by it and whenever there was singing, he was trying to sing along in his own little baby way. It made me do a lot of thinking about where I am and where I want to be in life. A lot of food for thought. Monday, I get into the office, have a crazy morning and then I have a moment to just settle in to my work and enjoy the classical station I have playing on my computer. And out of nowhere I hear "The Swan" from "Carnival of the Animals" by Dvorak. It's not a piece they play often, due to its novelty. However. It's the piece that Emily taught me that summer. Not only did I learn a piece that was way harder than anything I had attempted up to then, but she had me perform it at full assembly. In front of a lot of people. Accompanied only by a dancer and a pianist. From memory. Things I thought I'd never be able to do. So, I pose to you - was that a message from Emily?

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Walk For Two

I'm walking in Relay for Life on May 2. This time last year, we knew we were pregnant, but hadn't told anyone. As we were walking we giggled and laughed and knew that next year we'd be walking with someone else.

I plan on walking the survivors' lap holding Lucas. Could there be a better testament to the miracles that cancer research have found than a survivor who has since had a baby?

If you're interested in joining us or supporting the cause - let me know in the comments area so I don't have a link to my personal info floating out in the world!

My New Wheels

I've had the car for 2 months now. But I procrastinated taking pictures of it. So here it is! I named her Gertie. So far we get along just fine. In the second picture, notice the television above the gas pumps. Hideous. They're just everywhere - at the supermarket checkout, in doctors' offices, now at the gas pumps?? Ugh.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

More Beethoven

Played a short little concert today. Since I lost my cello strap I was practically chasing my cello across the floor as I played. Not so much fun. But it was nice to just play and to be appreciated.

Sometimes I love playing my cello so much that it scares me.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

E.T. Phone Home

So I had this dream last night (or rather this morning since it occurred after I woke up in a panic after checking Luke, since he slept from midnight to 6am) about E.T. E.T. was in the hospital and I was with my Auntie Glo (who passed away right before Easter). Except she looked like she did a good 10 years ago or so. And she wanted to visit E.T. since she knew he was really sick (like towards the end of the movie where he's separated from Elliot). And we found the room that he was in and she walked right in and held his hand. Okay. Now that's a weird dream to begin with, but when I got in to work this morning, I decided to put on the classical station. And about 10 minutes later, the closing music from E.T. starts playing.

This is going to sound completely weird, but I feel like my premonitions are getting a teensy bit stronger. I've had a few weird feelings the last couple of weeks that have come true. Driving to my parents' house last week to pick up Luke, I thought, "Maybe my mom doesn't have her class tonight and I'll see her." Lo and behold, mom was home sick.

Remembering Emily

Two weekends ago one of my first cello teachers passed away. In some twist of coincidence, her husband plays baseball with mine. And her husband had visited the camp she worked at the summer I was a camper there. So, I had met him before my husband did.

But I digress.

It was the first time I had really intensive lessons. It was the first time I really delved into learning the cello. It was the first time I played "real" music in orchestra, not watered-down, simplified versions. (We played the overture to The Barber of Seville, the second movement of Tchaikovsky's 5th Symphony, the 2nd movement of Beethoven's 7th Symphony) Emily had me study Saint-Saens' Swan from the Carnival of Animals. Not only did I learn it, but she had me perform it at an all-camp assembly, from memory and with a piano accompaniment and a dancer. Never had someone had so much confidence in me that I could pull something like that off. She taught me to "feel" music rather than just play it.

There are times you know your musicianship is being changed. There's definitive moments to the shaping of who you are as a musician. For me, the first one was studying with Emily. She taught me to not be self-conscious when I play. To try making things up as I go along. To just take risks as a musician.

Now I wonder. I've posted my question to the universe as "The Three Only Things" suggests. I asked about what it is I really should be doing, and what it is that I'm meant to do. Hearing about Emily makes me re-visit what it means to me to be a musician and what I want to do with it. It makes me remember what a magical summer that was for me and how I felt like a "real" musician for the first time.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Here Comes Peter Cottontail

We went to visit the big guy himself - no, not Santa, the Easter Bunny. Luke was bummed that he was too little to visit Santa (we weren't about to take him to the mall at 2 weeks old), so we made up for it by having his picture taken with the big bunny. He was all eyes and very well behaved; so much so, that he stared at the other kids who were crying as if to say, "Hey dude, it's the Easter Bunny." My little sweetie.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Look Out Martha

The other day, while Luke was napping in the a.m. I leafed through my latest issue of Bon Appetite. I love it. It's not as haughty as Gourmet, but has great recipes and articles. It's funny - I used to drool over "In Style" and "Lucky" but now I love reading food magazines.

But I digress.....I came across an article about homemade mayonnaise and how wonderful it is, etc. And I had taken out some chicken breasts, not knowing what I'd do with them. So I decided to try my hand at homemade mayonnaise and poaching chicken breasts (which I had also never done).
I've always kind of liked mayonnaise. I loved it on sandwiches as a kid and considered it a luxury as an adult trying to watch what I eat. When I was small, my dad would be making his lunch in the mornings before heading off to work and would make me a tiny mayonnaise sandwich on seedless rye bread that I would enjoy while tuned into a.m. cartoons. But as I aged and learned how mayonnaise wasn't the best thing for you, I turned to mustard to dress up my sandwiches.

So I wondered if homemade mayonnaise could re-ignite my mayo love. And I was challenged by it too - I mean, who makes homemade mayonnaise when you can just grab it out of the fridge? AND...I was inspired by the beginnings of the new season of "Top Chef". Love it. Love it. They make all sorts of nifty stuff off the tops of their heads - no recipes, no sous-chefs, no help.

It took me 2 tries to get it right (it's a little dance between whisking constantly and sloooowwwwllly adding oil) but it was this heavenly, whipped, rich concoction that distantly resembled the stuff in the jar with the blue lid.

That being done, I poached 2 chicken breasts (a new technique for me), chopped them roughly and added them to the mayonnaise. Then slathered that on some toasted rolls, added sliced avocado and voila! A delicious, warm chicken salad sandwich.

Oh mayo. You've been gone for too long.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Ten Points If You Know What This Is - Answer Below!!

It's a cable box. I remember them being in my aunt's neighborhood, which was a particularly new sprouting of suburbia 35 or so years ago. We used them as home plates, "safe" areas, incorporated them into all parts of our outdoor games. I was surprised to see them still around with all the digital cable that floats around, but it was certainly a blast from the past!

The Making Of A Couch Potato

Here's my little couch potato watching television. I know, I know that tv isn't "good" for babies, but he enjoys the colors and sounds and is watching "Sesame Street", so at least it's educational. He was actually mesmerized by Richie Havens singing "Wonder Child" and playing the guitar and by Jose Feliciano singing and playing guitar as well. Glad to see he has an appreciation for the arts!

Sunday, March 09, 2008

An Apple A Day

I'm so not a fruit person. According to my mother, I used to love it. Would eat orange slices left and right, loved apples and grapes. Now, I'm just real picky about the fruit I eat. I'll eat the occasional grapes, I still love bananas, and maybe the odd apple here and there.

But lately I've been digging apples like crazy. Maybe it's something inside me trying to stave off scurvy or something, but they've been delicious.

I had part of an apple gallette from Boston Market. Now, I'm not one to like pie-type desserts. To me, dessert doesn't mean eating fruit. If I'm going to do dessert, I'm going to eat something decadent and chocolatey. Something that makes it worth it. But this apple dessert was amazing. A buttery crust, lots of streussel topping and the apples weren't tart at all. (I think that's why I'm wary of fruit - sometimes it's so hit or miss as to if it's going to be sweet or tart or unripe - I don't like playing Russian roulette with my food.) I've been dying to eat another one for days now.

More recently, Luke and I went food shopping and on a whim I bought Gala apples. I've been buying sliced apples from Trader Joe's and I think they're sliced Gala apples. So I grabbed one today when running out to my concert, which had a rehearsal before it, so I'd have something to eat in between. (Plus, I figured the apple would cancel out the liverwurst sandwich I brought as well) Why didn't anyone tell me Gala apples were so tasty? It was sweet without being cloyingly so and not too crunchy and not mealy. I'm now hooked on apples. Which I guess is better than being hooked on something like Cheetos or Big Macs.

Mr. Beethoven, If You Please

I had a rehearsal for the Island Chamber Symphony. It's a small group (obviously, since it's a chamber group) and I simply get a gas stipend, not a usual check, but I get a lot of enjoyment out of playing for them. It's the only classical music I'm doing lately, and I feel like it keeps me in check and keeps my classical chops in gear.

We're doing (did, since we had our concert earlier today) Beethoven's 8th Symphony, which has this wicked little cello part in the 3rd movement. And I was sitting up front by myself. So I get through it, and the conductor says, "You know, I've heard Ricardo Muti do this with the Philadelphia Philharmonic and I could swear that it's one cello at that point, and since you did it so beautifully, how about you play it alone?"
I was mortified and excited all at once.

So we try it again, this time me playing the part alone. And it's this little minuet type thing where it's just basically the French horns and myself. And I manage to get through it again and sound not-so-bad.

And you know what happened? Everyone applauded! It was so cool. I was embarrassed and damn proud all at once.

The sad thing? I hadn't practiced the part like I had wanted to. I went in and winged it. And it just came so naturally to me. Which always makes me wonder and regret and wish and pontificate. Should I have been a music major? Where would I be now if I had? Is it too late to go back?

Thursday, March 06, 2008

How To Make Me Cry At My Desk

a.) Send me the following via e-mail to read upon getting to my desk:

A baby asked God, 'They tell me you are sending me to earth tomorrow, but how am I going to live there being so small and helpless?' God said, 'Your angel will be waiting for you and will take care of you.

'The child further inquired, 'But tell me, here in heaven I don't have to do anything but sing and smile to be happy.' God said, 'Your angel will sing for you and will also smile for you. And you will feel your angel's love and be very happy.'

Again the child asked, 'And how am I going to be able to understand when people talk to me if I don't know the language?' God said, 'Your angel will tell you the most beautiful and sweet words you will ever hear, and with much patience and care, your angel will teach you how to speak.'

'And what am I going to do when I want to talk to you?' God said, 'Your angel will place your hands together and will teach you how to pray.

''Who will protect me?' God said, 'Your angel will defend you even if it means risking its life.

''But I will always be sad because I will not see you anymore.' God said, 'Your angel will always talk to you about Me and will teach you the way to come back to Me, even though I will always be next to you.'

At that moment there was much peace in Heaven, but voices from Earth could be heard and the child hurriedly asked, 'God, if I am to leave now, please tell me my angel's name.'

God said, 'You will simply call her, 'Mom.'

b.) Play the closing theme music to E.T. on the classical station.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Believe It or Not

Okay. So Sunday morning, around 6ish or so, I was reading all by myself in the living room. Luke was asleep as was Tommy. It's a little chilly and I've got a blanket wrapped around myself. All of a sudden out of nowhere I heard my name whispered. I kid you not. It was my whole name and I couldn't tell if it was a male or femal voice, but it was distinct as if the person was sitting next to me.


What Makes a Good Morning

  • Watching my two special guys sleep in the early morning while I'm getting ready for work.
  • Hearing a little someone stirring in their crib, going to investigate and getting a big smiley greeting.
  • Seeing a cardinal fly right past me on my way down the driveway.
  • Seeing a puppy in the car in front of me kiss the heck out of its owner and the owner kissing it back gleefully.
  • Hearing on the radio that it's going to be close to 60 degrees today.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Momma's Got a Brand New Bag

I was frustrated with carrying a diaper bag and my purse. It was clumsy and inefficient. So I searched for a bag that met the following requirements:
  • Was glamorous
  • Matched my overnight bag
  • Could hold all of my purse-type stuff AND Luke's stuff
  • Went on my back
Here's what I found. I love it. It makes shopping with Luke a million times easier. And I've already gotten compliments on it. Plus, I used the long-languishing Fortunoff's gift cards on it, so it was FREE!

There's a Baby in My Pocket

Well, I guess it's not really a pocket, but it's still a neat title. He's actually enjoying being tucked in there, which is great. I still love the Moby Wrap - especially when I'm really walking around the mall or making dinner, but this is great for when he refuses to nap when I'm not at home. Plus he likes to sit up in it as seen here like he's king of a Mardi Gras float. I call him Mayor McCheese when he does that - it looks like he's going to start waving and politicking. I look like a dweeb in the picture, but Luke looks too cute not to share it.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

What Dressing in the Dark on No Sleep Does

Brown tights and black boots. *sigh* At least my skirt is brown as well.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Snow Day

I'm toasty indoors. Got an angellically sleeping baby on the bed in his little nursing pillow, a husband snoring on the couch and a batch of chocolate oatmeal "milk supply" cookies in the oven.

And I don't have to go to work today.


Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Coming Around Full Circle

Last night I had my last appointment with the oncologist who treated my Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and got us through that hellish part of my past. Not because I'm done seeing doctors, but because Dr. B. is retiring from the practice. It was not easy to hold back tears. It felt something like a Lifetime movie - here I was, fulled cured with my new baby to show my oncologist as he's retiring. Cue the sappy music. But I really was sad at the prospect of not seeing him again. He was glad to see Lucas and I think he was glad that he was the one who got to tell me that recurrance of the kind of cancer I had is virtually none. It must have made for some closure for both of us. Mom and I gave him some cards and a little token of appreciation for all that he did for us. Below is what I wrote in his card.

Dear Dr. Berger,

How do I say thank you for a miracle? We came to you not knowing what was in store for us, fearing everything. After our first visit (and an impromptu bone marrow biopsy!) our fears were lessened and we had a clearer picture of the road to recovery. You told us what we were facing and how we would treat it. You always gave us all of our options and treated me as a whole person, not just the part of me that was sick.

And now I'm able not only to come to you healthy and still in remissino, but share my son with you - a child I was unsure I was even going to be able to have. So I say thank you. Thank you for my health, for treating me, for giving me all the hope in the world. I wish you nothing but happiness (and a little relaxation!) in your retirement, but will miss you and miss seeing you very much.

All our best,

Tiffany, Tom and Lucas

Bring Your Adorably Cute Baby To Work Week

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Back in the Saddle Again

Played my first post-Lucas show last night. It felt great to get out, it felt great to go to the theatre and just play. I lost myself for a few hours and got my chops back in working order again. And it's funny, the show was "Annie." Annie was the first show I saw on Broadway. I must have been maybe 7 or 8 at the very most. My Uncle Frankie took me and I really remember almost everything about it:

When Uncle Frankie called to tell my mother he wanted to take me to see a show, he said, "Go tell your mother I'm taking you to see "Oh Calcutta!" - which he and my mother thought was funny and left me clueless. I remember being so awestruck at being in the city and feeling so grown-up. Uncle Frankie bought me a Shirley Temple at intermission at the glamorous, sparkling bar in the theatre. He bought me a souvenir program that I still have to this day.

And so began my life-long love affair with musicals.

So I was glad that my foray back into the "professional" world of cello-playing was an old favorite.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


Now, the story in my family goes, that when I was little, about 2 or so, I'd get the shakes when I'd see Peppermint Patties - they were my favorite. So, when you've got a young'un and you're on your way home after sitting in weather-related traffic for 2 hours and are hungry, and you pass a Burger King, you figure, "I'll get a salad." Which wasn't bad. But then you see your favorite word: "NEW!" and get suckered in to purchasing a York Peppermint Pie. And I have to say, I forsee myself making a detour to the BK in between the sitter's house and my house just to get a few more slices of this stuff. It was incredibly tasty - for a fast food dessert that is. Hey, for .99, you can't go wrong.

And then when you're on your way to work and realize that you haven't eaten anything much in the last 12-14 hours, McDonald's looks good. And again, the siren song of "NEW!" calls you. And you order a McSkillet Burrito. I like breakfast burritos. I like that my egg, cheese and other variables are snug in a little pocket for me to consume. The combo of egg, sausage, cheese, potato, pepper and hot sauce is a definite waker-upper. Delish.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

A Turn for the Better????

Last night I got Luke to not only tolerate our new wrap/carrier but he fell asleep in it. I was shocked. Absolutely shocked! Of course he screamed bloody murder when I tried to take him out, but hey, it's a step in the right direction. I got a Moby wrap - this long piece of fabric that I wrap around myself and pop him in. He actually seems to enjoy it. The next step is to try to go shopping with him in it.

I have to admit, I kind of like the fact that he wants to be close to me to sleep. I'm relishing it now because once he's a hulking behemoth of a teenager he won't want to be in the same room with me.

Thursday, February 07, 2008


Relaxing. How am I relaxing with an 8-week old?? Easy. I'm watching one of my favorite movies:

And I ate my first Valentine treat of the season:

And when I bought said treat, I noticed EASTER CANDY!! My love of Russel Stover's and Reese's Easter candy has been mentioned, but it's worth mentioning again. How can one not love chocolate marshmallow, covered in chocolate, shaped like an egg????
**Not to mention said baby is fast asleep in his carseat.