1. I’d like a way to import my Facebook entries to this blog. (I post much more on FB than I do here.)
2. One of my most favorite romantic memories is the weekend that I spend with Susan just a month or so ago.
3. Last night, I had a Big Mac for dinner. (It was left over from lunch; buy one Big Mac, get one for a penny.)
4. Sorry for the lack of posting over here. (See item #1!)
5. Can we go on vacation now?
6. One of my worst temptations is Susan; voluptuous curves are hard to resist!
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to hanging out with my family at a Pampered Chef party, tomorrow my plans include work (it’s billing day!), and Sunday, I want to make it through another Sunday School class on Exodus!
1. I’d like a way to import my Facebook entries to this blog. (I post much more on FB than I do here.)
1. All you need is two eggs, a little milk or water, some shredded cheese, salt and pepper, a little butter, and a hot pan, and I can make you a killer omelet.
2.On occasion, listening to the comedy station on my XM radio fills me with laughter.
3. Each generation, as it grows up, wants to do better than their parents. I wonder if my kids will be able to do it, or will they spend to much time, effort, and money cleaning up our mess.
4. Children who are old enough to speak in full sentences but insist on speaking “baby talk” is something I have a hard time dealing with.
5. A trip to that special island with Susan is what I need.
6. When you see an elephant is about to poop on you, you cover your head and you get back.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to being home with my family, tomorrow my plans include a freebie gig to help seniors with heating bills, and Sunday, I want to sing with the church choir!
Not much happened Friday.
Saturday I was home with kids for the day. I played a gig on Saturday to a very responsive crowd. A very nice lady from Alabama told me twice I had beautiful eyes. I played a drum solo that was pretty decent and garnered applause. The end.
Now, let’s get to the magic!
Immediately after church, Susan and I and the kids packed up the van and headed to Somerville. You see, Susan’s parents live there, and they were going to be watching the kids for us. Why? So we could be alone for a romantic weekend! Oh yeah!
We left the kids, and headed for Freeport. I had booked us a room at a place called The James Place Inn. Freeport is a quick drive outside of Portland, and The James Place is one of the few places near Portland that offered an in-room two person hot tub! Oooh la-la!
Having settled into the room for a little while, we started on our way to Portland. The entire thrust of the outing was to see Casting Crowns and Kutless in concert at the Portland Civic Center. We were going to meet Jim and Jeanine for supper at some Mexicn place Jim likes. We weren’t too far away from Haddlock Field when I heard this really awful grinding/thumping noise eminate from the front passenger side tire. It was a rhythmic sound that sped up and slowed down with the speed of the tire. It almost sounded like a flat, but the car was handling fine. I pulled over. No flat. I looked under the car. Nothing. I got back in, and started looking for a garage. Susan got Jim and Jeanine on the horn. Having stopped for directions, I was told of a Sullivan Tire not far from Haddlock Field. Jim and Jeanine would meet us there.
Not wanting to be detered on our romantic weekend, I threw the keys in a service envelope, and stuck them in the key drop. Jim and Jeanine offered to chauffer us for the remainder of the evening. The Mexican restaurant was closed/sold/out of business or otherwise not open. We opted for a Chinese restaurant with a buffet, as time was of the essence. It was ok. Then the concert…
We were told the concert started at 6:30pm. When we got there at about 6:20, Caleb was already on stage. Just him and his brother (I think), who was playing the cajon. They were pretty good. Kutless was next. I didn’t really know anything about them. I enjoyed them very much, and they know how to rock! The drummer was pounding! Big arm movements, way above his head. They played 1/2 dozen songs or so, maybe eight. I was really surprised their set was so short. Casting Crowns played two sets. They were good, as you would expect from the headliner. I would have preferred they played a little less, and let Kutless have some more stage time. The concert was done around 10:30pm. Jim and Jeanine dropped us off at the B&B. They took a quick tour of the place, and took their leave.
I was up Monday morning at 7am. Breakfast was from 8-9am, so I went, procured some coffee, said good morning to innkeeper Robin, and met his daughter Elise. Breakfast was innkeeper Tori’s delicious homemade granola and yogurt, raspberry oatmeal muffins, cinnamon French toast (homemade cinnamon bread!), bacon, and juice. While having breakfast, the garage called, and quoted repairs on the van. It wasn’t all outdoors expensive, though they did try to talk me into four new tires and an alignment. No thanks. The car was done around noon. Innkeeper Robin was gracious enough to give me a lift into Portland to pick up the van. Both Robin and Tori were wonderful hosts; I’d stay with them again in a hearbeat. I drove back to the inn and picked up Susan. (So not only did they give us a lift to Portland, the innkeepers also gave us a late checkout. Thanks!)
For the rest of the day, Susan and I drove north. We took Rt 1 to Brunswick, looking for antiques and shops. Not much going on on that stretch of road. We then took I-95 north to Gardiner. We walked up and down Mn St of Hallowell. Note: downtown Hallowell is mostly closed on Mondays. We drove into Augusta, and did some quick shopping at a couple of stores, nothing eventful. We had a nice “lunch” around 3pm at Longhorn. After that, we went to Bed, Bath and Beyond in Augusta, as Susan was looking for some new curtains. While there, I also found an “extra firm” pillow that seemed to suit me. There was a Christmas Tree Shop located right next door. Having never been into one myself, Susan talked me into going in and looking around.
We got back to Spruce Head around 7pm. It was nice to be home. I think we may have watched a little TV, but we didn’t stay up long. We went to bed, tired from what could have been a trying weekend, but instead we never let the little things get to us. We instead decided to have an awesome time.
Friday. Left the office. Proceeded almost immediately to my gig in Bangor at The Whig and Courier. We had a typical gig there. It’s a hard room to play in. The stage is small, and in one room. The bar is at the opposite side of the building in another room. So what ends up happening is the patrons sit in the other room, and listen through the opening. The downside is you, as a performer, can’t “feed” of their energy. Yes, they would clap and hoot at the end of songs, but it’s not the same. On the plus side, the people who run the place are very nice, and the food is really good. I stopped at Tim Horton’s on the way home for a sour cream donut and a milk. I think I was home about 2am. Susan was still up, and she was glad when I returned home.
Saturday AM, and Susan got up with the kids. Anyone who reads here knows I love my wife very much. She’s not a morning person, though. So usually I get up with the boys, even on those morning where I have a gig the night before. Saturday, though, Susan got up with them and let me sleep. And sleep I did! I think I slept until almost 10am! I can’t remember the last time I slept so late. When I woke, Susan had made baked cinnamon donuts and coffee. They were really quite good. There was a work crew at the church in the morning putting in new carpet tiles at the church. I called down there to see if they needed more help. (I figured they would.) They said no, they had enough people, and were about 1/2 way done. I wasn’t needed. I hadn’t planned on that, so I really didn’t know what to do with myself. I ended up taking Julia for lunch, and running a few errands. I think most of the afternoon was spent in the kitchen. I cleaned the floors and washed dishes. I made a creme caramel for supper’s dessert. Supper was a turkey risotto that Susan made. I got an interesting phone call from Dave Clarke just before I left for my gig. It seems he was playing a gig in Rockport, and his drummer forgot his snare drum. He was wondering if he could perhaps borrow one from me. I told him I’d see if I could scrounge one up!
My gig Saturday night went very well. We played at The Myrtle Street Tavern here in town. It’s been around for years; you may know it as The Oasis, The Myrtle House, O’Brann’s, The Ale Yard, or who knows what other names it has been. Supposedly, back in the day, you could “rent” a room upstairs if you needed someplace to, well, take a new found “girlfriend” that could be located at the bar. That doesn’t happen there anymore, but the place is still what you might call a “road house.” Beer, pool tables and darts, and some clientele that wouldn’t mind “taking it outside” if need be. But the crowd really liked the music. The place isn’t that big on the inside, and it was pretty well packed. People danced all night long. This gig was originally conceived as a jam session, but only about 1/2 a dozen other musicians showed up. So Blind Albert (the house band) finished up the show with about two hours of rock and blues. It was easy to feed off the energy of this crowd. They were having a good time. And, no fights, no falling down drunks. I got home around 1am, and once again, Susan was still up. It’s nice to feel wanted like that! (Not that I want you staying up late after every gig Susan! You need your sleep!)
Sunday morning came, and I got up first this time. We fired up the new eggamuffin toaster for its inaugural run. (Eggamuffin is what my late friend Tim called any breakfast sandwich. It enabled him to talk about such without copyright infringement!) Then it was off to church! Pastor Dave had a very moving and powerful service! God was in the house! We had people at the altar seeking renewal, people asking for healing, and nary a dry eye anywhere. It was great to be there. After several weeks of schedule mess-ups, we were back to the regular routine of lunch at Mom’s house, and Susan made a good lasagna, and an ever better banana cake! Susan wanted to stay at Mom’s house for the afternoon, so she kept the kids with her, and I went home and fixed all the wallpaper where the stupid cat sharpened her claws on the wall. I fell asleep on the couch for 1/2 hour until the phone rang. Then I watched some show on Discovery on how to translate motorcycle gang tattoos. Then back to church for evening service, then home.
1. I feel sorta strange.
2. Tickling Nathaniel is always fun.
3. Right now, I can hear these things: an air conditioner. (And, I can only hear it out of my right ear. I’m having a left ear problem right now.)
4. I don’t have a gig on Saturday night, and I’m glad having that time off will let me got to a Sea Dogs game.
5. The last time I had a physical was 2005.
6. It looks like I’m covering the office phones this Labor day weekend.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to gigging with Blind Albert at the Black Bull, tomorrow my plans include a breakfast alone with Susan, and Sunday, I want to start my new Sunday School class: The Faith Cafe!
Hey gang. I’ve been really slack on the posting the last few weeks, huh. Work has been bangin’ right along. It’s billing day next week, so that takes some pre-planning. Our Newcastle office moved to Nobleboro on June 1st, so that took me out of the office for a couple of days, resulting in two days worth of catch-up. Then I worked out in the field one day, so there’s one more day of behind-en-ness.
Last week was Jim’s bachelor party. As the best man, it was my job to throw it. Today, I’m catching a flight to Detroit, where I’ll pick up a rental car and travel four hours north. The wedding is Sunday. On Monday, I travel back to Detroit, and fly out in the evening. I’ll be back in ME late Monday, early Tuesday. I’ll prepare for billing day Tuesday, then billing day proper is Wednesday. I’ll try to make it throught Thursday and Friday, and then the following week is vacation! Yeah! I really could use one.
Also stuffed in there was my and Susan’s wedding anniversary. We celebrated 15 years of Holy Matrimony with supper at our favorite-est little eatery: Prism Glass. We started off with beef carpaccio. Susan had a veal parmigna, and I had linguini and clams. Dessert was some sort of caramel chocolate cake with banana sorbet. It was all very delicious. There are still so many things on the menu we want to try: pork chops with vidallia onion jam; chicken with artichoke hearts; duck breast with a dried blueberry glaze; lamb chops. Wowwie!
When we got home from dinner, we cut into the top layer of our wedding cake. That’s right! We forgot to eat it on our first anniversary, so we ate it on our 15th! My parents did sorta the same thing; they forgot to eat theirs, and ate it on their 10th. I remember it! I’m sure Julia will remember eating ours, too. The boys are almost 5–they probably won’t. The cake had good chocolate flavor, but was very dry. There was no “freezer funk” to it. The kids didn’t seem to care about the texture; the boys were upset we threw the bulk of it away! I took some photos, but they’re not posted yet.
1. If we had no winter then we’d have nothing to drive the tourists out of Maine!
2. Some of my customers are a perpetual astonishment.
3. If I had my life to live over I’d spend more time kissing Susan.
4. I’m praying daughter Julia gets well inside of four and twenty hours.
5. If you’ve never been thrilled by a cowboy in bleu cheese pants, well, you just haven’t, um, well, nevermind.
6. To be interested in the changing seasons all you have to do is come to Maine. (Just be sure to leave before winter sets in!)
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to surprising Susan with a gift, tomorrow my plans include gigging in Bangor and Sunday, I want to have a smooth billing day at the office, and then celebrate Susan’s birthday!
I had this idea the other day. There’s been this commercial for a place in Portland called Jokers. It’s much like a Chuck E. Cheese, I guess. (I’ve never been to a Chuck E. Cheese.) Both and Matt and Nat mentioned to me they wanted to go. I had taken the day off today to recover from the gig last night. (Incidentally, that gig didn’t happen!) So I figured I’d take the family down. And, I figured I’d make it a surprise! I didn’t even tell Susan.
Then, I had another idea. Jim and Rachelle live in Brunswick, about 1/2 way between here and Portland. I thought “I’ll call Jim and Rowe and ask if they want to come.” I go t Rowe’s cell phone from her Facebook page, and asked if they’d be game. She and the kids were game, but she didn’t know if Jim could make it. We’d have to play that part by ear. Nolan (their son #2 of #3) had a birthday party to attend today, so Rowe asked if we could leave a little early. I told her I would be there promptly at 10am, which would get us to Jokers at 11am.
We got up this morning, had a quick breakfast, swung by the bank, and headed for the surprise. We ended up at the Gilbert’s about 9:45. Rachelle was just pulling into the yard; Nolan decided to go to his friend’s birthday party early, and hang with them instead of us. Rachelle also told us that Jim was at a job (he’s a dependable Maine tiler), but that he’d meet us there. Cool!
We had a great time at Jokers. For less than $40, the five of us got to play in the giant inside jungle gym, play games, win prizes, and split a cheese pizza and sodas. I’d go again.
After about 2.5 hours, it was time to leave. We said our goodbyes in the parking lot, and headed towards home. It was warm outside, and even warmer in the van. Matthew said something about wanting some ice cream. And thus was born Surprise Friday Idea #2!
There’s a Cold Stone Creamery in Brunswick. I’ve been once; the rest of the family had never been. I figured it would be a good place to stop. Nat wanted mint, so he and I split a Mint Mint Chocolate Chocolate Chip. Julia ordered a cheesecake with white chocolate chocolate chips. Susan and Matt had cotton candy. Julia couldn’t finish her’s, so Matt polished it off.
And then we came home. It was a nice day, and I had a really good time.