Sunday, August 27, 2006

A New Addition to the Family!

Some people add to the family with babies. Some ease into things with pets. daN and i, on the other hand, not being ready for babies nor have the space for a pet, have been adding nice appliances that are expensive but highly rated and should last a long freakin' time.

It all started with the Kitchen Aid mixer. I love this thing to pieces and use it at least once a week. Next, we moved onto getting a Cuisinart drip coffee maker. Ah, the blessings of consistently good drip coffee. Today, we finally got a new toaster oven.

I feel the need to "bury" the old one, as i bury a remnant of my past with it. We've been using a toaster oven that i found at the swap shop at the Camden (Maine) dump. It looked perfectly fine, so i scrubbed it out as best as i could, and it worked! Recently, it's been showing signs of its age, and finally shit the bed as it doesn't toast consisently at all, burns the outside of the damned piece of bread while the inside remains cold and untouched by thermal energy at all.

All in all though, it did a good job for the four or five years that i had it. I did a lot of research online so we could find just the right one, when, surprise-surprise, Cuisinart and Kitchen Aid had the highest ratings. What is more, the brand that i picked up at the dump is reported to have gotten worse. All the reviews i read said that while the old models worked for a long time, the new ones barely last at all. Also, word to the wise, don't buy a DeLonghi electronic. They've got terribly reviews across the board. I based most of my research off a great consumer page called

At any rate, today, daN and i went to Bed, Bath, and Beyond (we have a stockpile of 20% off coupons there that never expire at that particular store) and picked up the $100 toaster oven for a mere $80. Well, it's a smart looking piece of equipment on our counter in a professional mat black finish, and we could make muffins in it to boot.

To see the most recent addition to our family, check out the link below:

Rest your soul, 1970's Black and Decker toaster oven. Your generation has served us all well, and we have graduated to a higher class of toaster ovens. Thank you for setting the standard even if your children couldn't keep it up.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Coffee as a Health Drink?

Sent to me by my friend Lee. It's official! According to the New York Times, coffee consumption has been scientifically proven as beneficial, reducing risk of cardiovascular disease, alcohol-related liver failure, and something else. Whew!

All i drink is water, coffee, tea, and wine. And the occassional coctail. By all measures, i'm in good shape.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Back into the swing of things.

Thank goodness! Let me preface this by saying that I am waiting to find out what hospital room an old friend of mine is in at Mass General. He had surgery this morning at 10:30 and he still doesn't have a room! Yarg!

At any rate, daN and i were in Maine this weekend, and ... to avoid sounding pessamistic, it was overwhelmingly filled with mostly wonderful things as trips to Maine often are.
1. Saw Emily Sibley! We caught up after about 7 years of having not really seen each other and split a bottle of wine on her porch. (maiden: Dail -- went to high school with her, and it was SO great to see her!) and got a wonderful free massage as a result -- she works at the Downeast School of Massage. I was so present, and the therapist in training who massaged me is a talented healer indeed.
2. Saw the Bogs! Actually, we didn't plan seeing them this weekend, but their warm open hearts and home made it impossible, and the day of recouperation was spent there, as we all sat around reading, went on a long walk down to the ocean, played video games, ate greens, etc.
3. Seeing Mum -- we hung out and shot the shit on the deck in the beautiful pre-fall Maine weather -- dry and warm -- while daN was fast asleep on the bed.
4. The Story Telling Circle at the Golden Raven -- Ron's project. We saw and heard some fantastic stories that will stick with me, and afterwards, we had a delightful time hanging out wiht daN's crazy Aunt Carol and Uncle Ron and Jon and Judy. It was a blast!
5. Got to see my Dad! And Jeanne and Yulia (his girlfriend and youngest daughter)! We also had a wonderful time. He made a DELICIOUS blue cheese and tomato tart with a green salad on the side served with lemon vinagrette. MMMM.
6. Saw the various aspects of the Miller Family! Young Alexander (daN's nephew) was baptized...and to be honest, a lot of that day was filled with awkwardness and disaster as specific people seem to have been excluded from specific things, but all in all, it was a fine day and we ate well at Debbie's afterwards.
7. Hung out at the Second Read! I love that place. Nuff said.
8. Had an EXCELLENT dinner (in fact, the only good meal we had out the whole weekend) at Rustica -- the new Italian restaurant on Main Street, Rockland. The service was unparalleled, and the food was wonderful and creative. I didn't even have to get wheat! I had a delicious salad with polenta (cornbased) croutons with roasted red peppers stuffed with sundried tomatoes and olive oil in a balsamic reduction. Oh my god. It was simply terrific. I was so happy.
9. We also, at the beginning of the trip, saw Graham Allen in "The Full Monty" at the Maine State Music Theatre. It was a fantastic production! I guess i would expect nothing less from a professional theatre, but, that having been said, the actual staging, acting, singing, overall talent were wonderful as was the play itself. I was very happy.

So, overall, good weekend.

1. Overwhelmed with seeing people 24-7. I am half introvert, half extrovert, and daN more intro than i... and we started to fall, apart around Sunday night riding back from Dad's house. It was too much. Monday was the day of recovery at the Bogs.
2. Food -- we ate pretty much terribly a lot of the time we were there, and spent a disappointingly large amount of money doing so.
3. Too much time in the car, not enough time relaxing.
4. No time for each other, let alone ourselves! We actually had to go out on a date on Monday night to catch up!
5. Never are quite sure we'll be able to stay in or close to Union -- where most of the family is.

Proposed Solution:
Get a hotel room in Rockland for one of the two usual weekend nights, and perhaps more nights than that if we are staying for longer. This should help maintain the sanity levels.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

And now, for your moment of ZeN: me doing yoga on a cliff on Monhegan Island.

Chain Pirate!

For those of you who wish to follow, some folks pulled together by my darling daN are working on a chain written online webcomic called "Chain Scarlet" surrounding a character of pirates. Despite my lack of photoshop skillZ (required to do things like making speech bubbles, inserting text, and move stock images of characters around) i am participating!

The chain cycle is still in its first round, so check it out from beginning to end, click here: and then use the "Next" buttons to feed along. Mine is #4!

Saturday, August 12, 2006

kids, anybody?

i am about to embark upon teaching yoga to some kids in the malden school system for an academic year. it frightens me, but i think it will be good. it will unfortunately only be once a month to each age group, and i will be teaching to 2 age groups -- a 1-4th grade set, and the other a 5-8th grade set. the two shall be very different -- any tips on how to handle it? i also have to put a curriculum together, which shouldn't be a problem. i will emphasize balance one time, inversions another time, etc, and then be practicing the sun salute all along so they can take it home with them. i'll make little hand-outs and stuff. the other nice thing is that they are going to pay me for prep time, which is great. they are very excited to have me twice a month, and i am very excited to have this going for me too. so, it shall work out, somehow. at the very least, it will be fascinating, and i'll be sure to have times around holidays off.

harvard athletics interviewed me this past week, and that went very well. they were already talking about how to get me on the schedule.

still no one showing up at the classes at the dance center of waltham, but i have one consistent student going to my harvard square gig. i think i'll have to put some more posters up... i did a mailing... i hope it works.

constant self-marketing is tiring. i'm still nowhere near getting enough to pay the bills, but i am slowing the rate of attrition in my bank account. and hell -- it sure has been nice not having to get up at 6 every morning.