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Last Visit 2016-04-04 09:29:22 |Start Date 2007-08-13 08:30:04 |Comments 728 |Entries 207 |Images 109 |Videos 2 |

Category: home

08/24/07 09:04 - 72ºF - ID#40704

Inferiority Complex

We left the suburbs of Pittsburgh to leave a culture and lifestyle behind that we disliked and to which we refused to expose any forthcoming children in our lives. The irony is that this suburb has one of the top ranked public school districts in the state and in the country. Maybe sometime (e:Drew) will even expound on his thoughts on why it's difficult to live out a christian mission in a rich suburb, but I digress...

We fulfilled a long time desire of wanting to live in an urban community (although I have to admit that my ultimate dream is to live in a particular urban community in Philly). So here we are and we love it for a number of reasons. I, for one, love how the old houses are built so that the porches are close to the sidewalk so that one can sit on their porch and comfortably greet their neighbors and passerbyers. Again, I digress....

Here, finally, comes the point. In this Pittsburgh suburb, folks were very wealthy and lived a very wealthy life style. The youth group kids at our church felt free to make fun of our beat up Geo Metro followed by our 10 year old beat up Acura Integra. A committee at church even removed some patio furniture off the front porch of our manse because it was unattractive. Yet, I NEVER felt an inkling of pressure to try to keep up with the the saying goes. In part, because it was absolutely a financial impossibility. I mean, we could have bought a few things of the life style, but barely.

I actually feel more community pressure and more angst from that pressure here in Buffalo. A common conversational topic around the neighborhood is house repair/renovation. And we have had and will continue to have some major repairs/renovations. We discussed house painting with a Buffalo friend who stated that if he had a house like ours he would paint it himself, absolutely. Oh, yes, it's that easy. Nights after work, weekend by weekend, bit by bit, you can paint your own house standing on scaffolding three stories high to reach up to the attic. Yeah, no thanks, we hired painters. We discussed our roof repairs with neighbors who said so matter of factly oh it's nothing to put a new roof on. They replaced their roof over the course of five years, section by section! Kewl, but I think I'll just save the money and have contractors do the work. (e:Drew) and I even joke about the potential shunning we might receive if people knew that the porch ceiling was repaired with vinyl instead of replacing the damaged wood <gasp>.

Don't get me wrong. I did a lot of minor repairs when we moved in. Sticky doors now close. I installed cabinet hardware so cabinets close. Tarnished copper door knobs are now a shiny rose color. I patched walls and did touch up painting all over the house. Interior painting is on the to do list down the road. But am I not worthy unless I sacrifice every weekend and summer evening to the idol that is my house?!
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Permalink: Inferiority_Complex.html
Words: 535
Location: Buffalo , NY

Category: pets

08/23/07 08:39 - 71ºF - ID#40691

My cats opthamologist looks like a star!

I like the opthamologist whom my fat cat visits.
I don't like the fact that my fat cat requires opthamological treatment for a condition (e:Drew) refers to as "MUCKY EYE".
But I do like the opthamologist.
She looks just like Kirsten Dunst when she was in Spider Man.
She even talks like Kirsten Dunst.
I think Kirsten Dunst is really cute; so I therefore find my cat's opthamologist to be really cute.

The fat cat likes the opthamologist because she provides a never ending pile of treats for the fat cat and then giggles at the greediness of the fat cat as she snoops around the office for more treats.

The treats sure enough aren't helping the fat cat's fat issue though.
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Permalink: My_cats_opthamologist_looks_like_a_star_.html
Words: 123
Location: Buffalo , NY

Category: life

08/21/07 09:16 - 60ºF - ID#40649


It bites that the weather is unseasonably cold.

It bites when you're parents get divorced.
Even when you're 28 years old.
Even when you're living on your own.
Even when you have your own family.
It still sucks.
I guess there is never a good time in life for parents to get divorced.

Think happy thoughts, happy thoughts, happy thoughts .....*




Ahh...much better.

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Permalink: Blah.html
Words: 68
Location: Buffalo , NY

Category: home

08/20/07 05:39 - 59ºF - ID#40641

How could it happen to me?

So we were told that it would be inevitable. Our time would come regardless of what precautions we took...

So it finally happened. This morning I discovered the remnants of an attempt to steal our car stereo. Apparently we made it easy to get into the car so they were able to start taking apart the console around the stereo, but the ingenuity of our vehicle beat them and they were unable to finish the job. Our 10 yr old beat up Acura Integra is made so even stereo installation people struggle to install a new stereo into the vehicle let alone a thug who's trying to steal the stereo on the fly...

So it's a bummer that someone was messing with our car. I feel like an idiot for not being more careful about locking my car doors. I was really angry, but that diminished pretty quickly...Overall, I'm glad we still have our car stereo. And if that's the worst that happens to us, we're doing pretty good.
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Permalink: How_could_it_happen_to_me_.html
Words: 169
Location: Buffalo , NY

Category: food

08/17/07 08:41 - 62ºF - ID#40589

Blueberry bonanza

I just finished off another slice of rich, crumbly, satisfying blueberry banana bread with a cup of strong coffee and I am feeling very pleased with myself.

Three weekends ago, (e:Drew) and I went blueberry picking. I got to down to business and was a blueberry picking machine filling my pail almost to the brim. (e:Drew) protested, demanding that I stop. But I ran up and down the aisles of blueberry bushes picking blueberries and throwing them into my bucket as fast as I could before (e:Drew) caught me. He forced me out of the blueberry fields while I grabbed handfuls of blueberries and shoved them into my mouth.

The results of my persistence.....11 pounds of blueberries for the price of $14.00 (and free blueberries in my tummy) from which I have made a tasty blueberry crisp and satisfying blueberry-banana bread. I still have blueberry pies and cobblers to look forward to as well as more blueberry banana bread. I think I'll make bueberry crisp for this weekend. None for (e:Drew)...he tried to stop me in my picking venture. He can watch from afar while I eat my blueberry crisp with my friends warm and bubbling straight out of the oven with thick, fresh whipped cream. You guys can come over and have some too!
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Permalink: Blueberry_bonanza.html
Words: 219
Location: Buffalo , NY

Category: mr/dd

08/16/07 08:46 - 68ºF - ID#40572

Weekend Guests

I'm really excited for this weekend. We have four of my developmentally disabled friends and two of their staff visiting from Pittsburgh. They live/work at one of the many community homes that I used to run. The guys absolutely love wings, so I'm taking them to the Anchor Bar Friday night and then we'll chill out at the house afterwards with a movie I think.
Saturday we are going to the zoo for the day. We have free tickets for everyone thanks to a local foundation. If anyone works with/has relatives with disabilities and you want to go to the zoo, I'll get you the info! After the zoo we'll cook out sausages on the grill. Then off to the requisite visit to the Niagara falls to see them lit up at night. I'm a little leary of taking them into Canada, so we're sticking to the American side.
Sunday we'll go to church and have some lunch afterwards then they'll be off to Pittsburgh.

I'm hoping that I picked activities that they'll enjoy. I'm worried that I'll slip into my old role as the "Boss, Sir"** and run the show instead of just relaxing and having a good time. I'm a little scared that I'll screw up the logistics of hosting 6 people in the house and making sure they stay well fed and comfortable. And I'm really wary of 8 people in a house with one bathroom!

  • On a funny side note, a lot of the staff in my homes were immigrants from Africa and many of them refused to call me Janelle and instead called me "Boss, sir". I had to just give up on telling them to call me Janelle and just enjoyed the ego trip that came with being called, Boss, Sir!
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Permalink: Weekend_Guests.html
Words: 297
Location: Buffalo , NY

Category: work

08/15/07 08:25 - 71ºF - ID#40552

Work Doldrums

Less than six months ago, I had a job that was beating me into the ground. On call for staff and client emergences 24-7. Oh, yes, love the 2am run to the hospital when a client falls and breaks some bone. 60 hour weeks. Start my day with no clear ending point to the day. A hyperactive a supervisor who bounded into my office ten times a day with another 5 jobs all to be done ASAP. Took my frustration out on the husband when I got home.

I would have danced the happy dance (ask (e:drew) about the happy dance, I really do have one) if you had told me that in the future I would have a 9am to 5pm job with nothing substantial to do all day!


I need suggestions on how to pass the time, but still look like I"m doing something productive to those spying eyes that I know are watching me.....

Any suggestions?

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Permalink: Work_Doldrums.html
Words: 165
Location: Buffalo , NY

Category: work

08/14/07 08:35 - 55ºF - ID#40531

The straw that broke Elmwood's back

I work for an agency that serves people with developmental disabilities (aka mental retardation for those unfamiliar with PC terms). I'm involved in starting a brand spanking new program that's going to have its own location. Elmwood ave in the Elmwood village area has been bantied around as a great location. I concur for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that it cuts my commute down to a short walk to work =)
I made the mistake of discussing this topic with friend of a friend who is an absolutely zealous city planner type and worked for a local neighborhood assocation years ago.
He heatedly declares to me that there are 400 different social service organizatons operating in Elmwood, Allentown and Lafayette and that's ENOUGH (I doubt the veracity of the number). No more social services need apply to reside in the area. So I quiz him as to the negative impact of the social services on the neighborhood to which his thoughtful reply is that it deprives suburb communities of social services. Okay, but what is the negative impact on the communities named. He can't name any, so stutters out, I'm a liberal type, I know these services help people, I want to seek the root causes for these problems, but I don't want all those organizations in my community.
What I heard was, I'm a liberal, but I don't want to have to see or interact with homeless people, alcoholics or retards. I want all the priveleges of suburban living (i.e. exclusivity) in the city. Arrgghh...he's the liberal that exemplifies why I don't identify as a liberal anymore!
So...what do you think, will one more social service agency in Elmwood be the beginning of the end?
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Permalink: The_straw_that_broke_Elmwood_s_back.html
Words: 293
Location: Buffalo , NY

08/13/07 08:38 - 65ºF - ID#40508

Emerging from the shadows...

I'm emerging from the shadows of (e:drew) and have decided to post in my own right instead of living vicariously through his account and posting comments under his name. So hello, I'm Janelle. I'm married to the sexy, balding minister (e:drew).

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Permalink: Emerging_from_the_shadows_.html
Words: 43
Location: Buffalo , NY



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