About Me

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Full Time Mom, Wife, Work, Life - Mom to three children (adults), two are college graduates and now own their own homes, and the youngest is in college in NC; wife to Thomas; Work - one full time and multiple part time jobs; Life - whatever you can throw at me....

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

New Hens - It is time!

As most of you know, I raise my hens for eggs.  Last March, I ordered six red cross pullets.  During the summer, four of my ladies were lost to a raccoon (which we got!) :)

So, my surviving two hens have been very good to us all through the winter and have been laying, but it is almost March again and it is time to get more. 

I have decided that I am going a different route, though...I have always had brown egg layers...red cross, black sex-links, wyandotte, and New Hampshire and Rhode Island Reds.  This year, I am ordering White Leghorns, which give out white eggs! 

They will be here around mid-March and they are started pullets (approx. 17 weeks old and vaccinated), so they should lay within a month or two of that!   This is a white leghorn:

                                                                          Photo credit

I will post my own photos, when I get them.....

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Happy Birthday!

To both my brother Chris and my brother-in-law Danny!

It makes it easy to remember the day when two have the same birthday!

They are both in this picture on the evening that my son became an official police officer. 

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Nonni update

Just a quick update on Nonni....she is doing well!  101 years old (and almost three months) and she is just so cute.  The other day/night, she decided she was going to only talk in Italian - she has done this before.  Unfortunately, there are only a couple of us who can understand her and since she speaks dialect, even I have a hard time! 

Here she is this week with her first and only great-great grandchild, Gia!  Both are such a Blessing!

Saturday, February 23, 2013


I haven't been doing too much walking or running lately with the cold temperatures and the amount of snow that is still on our roads.  Some places on my street are still only one lane passable, so I prefer to be indoors where it is safer. 

However, there is a road race coming up in a few weeks, always held on Good Friday.  It is a cancer benefit walk/run 5K.  I'll be doing it for the first time this year in the afternoon.  And in the morning on Good Friday, there is a beautiful Faith Walk with my brother's church that follows the stations of the cross all over town.  It is a few miles long and very inspirational.  Two walks/runs in one day!

Here is a photo of my sister and myself at our last race on Thanksgiving.  I had forgot that a friend had taken the picture after the race and my sister found it online.

Spring can't come quick enough - I need to get some vitamin D!

Let me know if anyone is interested in doing the Faith Walk or the Cancer Benefit Walk on March 29th!!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Trick Golf Shot

I have not learned how to actually post a video on my site....bad, I know...

But click on the link below, to see a trick golf shot at my daughter's school and how GMA did a follow-up!

It is funny!


Saturday, February 16, 2013


I gave up teaching Zumba classes  for almost four months, but I'm back.

I will be teaching just once a week now, but I love it!

After I gave up teaching, I immediately gained weight (Holiday cookies and good food and no exercise  = weight gain)!  It is time to put my dancing skills to good use and start exercising again!

I need accountability folks (friends), so there it is!!!  Let's help each other out!!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


Have I ever mentioned how much I hate the FAFSA form? 

Enough said!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Working from home

I was able to work from home on Friday when the blizzard started.  I (and my whole office) am working from home today, because a lot of people are still snowed in and there are streets that still won't be cleared until tomorrow.

My husband, who pulled an overnight shift last night for snow removal, said there are cars and streets still buried in so much snow that crews will be working non stop for a week to get them out.  This is not fun!  Towns just aren't prepared for the enormity of the snow.  We can handle five storms totaling 34 inches over the course of a month, but to lump it in to one 24 hour period is unfathomable.

Today is rain, all day.....They (the meteorologists) say that the puddles it is going to cause will be bad because there is no room for the rain to go - all storm drains are covered and I know on our street, they won't be found for another month or so.

My brother and mom's streets were finally plowed yesterday.  Mom is still in Mass.  I'm trying to convince her to stay there.  They had a foot less than us and are more prepared for it!  

We dug out a six foot high by 10 foot wide by six feet deep pile of snow yesterday.  We had to use the roof rake because of the amount of snow and pulling it all down caused this enormous pile of snow directly on and next to the house.  For fear of water leaking into the house, three of us tackled the pile and it took a couple of hours, but it is done!  I've never had such pain in my shoulders and back!! LOL

Mother Nature is laughing her head off right now!!!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Happy Birthday

To my hubby, Thomas!

He had to shovel a lot of snow on his birthday this year and we had to cancel our plans for the evening because just about everything in the state is closed!

But I wish him a beautiful 2013!!!

Thank Goodness for Snow Blowers

Hubby bought a snow blower last year....because the year before that was the worst snowfall record in history in our area and we didn't have one!  I can't remember how many feet we got over the course of the winter 2010-2011, but it was astronomical.  Than last year, 2011-2012 was the least snowiest winter on record....so we had this monstrous snow blower and couldn't use it!  But alas.....the 2012-2013 winter has paid for itself in that the snow blower is being used!!  

How else do you get through 3 feet of fluffy white stuff?  There is just no place to put it though!

Blizzards are not really fun - Unless you are a kid!  But the sun is out now!

My son HAS to go to work for 3:00 pm today, but he should be okay!  The roads are plowed to some extent and he will use our four wheel drive vehicle.

Where does one put 3 feet of snow?

That is the question of the day!

I wish I could have video taped my son plowing through three feet of snow at the top of the driveway at 11:30 last night - it should have been in a commercial!

We shoveled and snow-blew from 11:30 to 1:00.  My son and hubby stayed out until 3:00 am to snow-blow the top of the driveway by the road (however, there is three feet of snow from the plow at the top of the driveway right now).  They got the driveway done, but my front steps are totally unpassable.  This morning, I knew I had to take care of the chickens - animals were the first priority.  I was able to shovel out a very small area for them, give them food and water, but that is all they are going to get today.

 The dog can't make it through!
 My back door. I have two steps down off of my slider.  As you can see the drift is another foot over the stepsl

 My mailbox - up to the box itself!

 a photo of my leg trudging through!
 Shoveling out the inside the coop - you can see the hen watching me from the closed up area.
 The coop before I started shoveling it out.

 My home from the back chicken coop area - I walked through it to get to the coop.

 My arborvitae can't take the weight of the snow..
 A four foot wall of snow near the front of my house from the snow blower last night!
 Taking the dog out at 6:45 in the morning.
Here are some pictures.  This is my front stair case - totally covered and impassable.

They are saying Milford, CT was the hardest hit.  38 inches!   We have a minimum of  30, probably 33 or 34 but with the blowing, there is no way to measure it!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Storm Nemo

I guess Nemo is the name of the Blizzard of 2013.  

I am one of the lucky ones who gets to work from home today.  No stress!!

The snow started here in my part of CT at about 7:50 am.  One son is already at work and hubby is leaving now for work.  The other son is heading to the gym.  I wasn't going to go to the grocery store, but I decided to go get a few things "just in case".  There were hardly any customers at the grocery store at 7:25 though, so that was good - I was in and out!!

I will be online for work and in the kitchen all day, multi-tasking!!

I hope to post pictures of the "blizzard" - we are expecting two feet.  My mom is in a part of Massachusetts that could get three feet!  

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The last of Phil

I can't believe that I can finally cross Groundhog Day off of my bucket list!  It has been a dream of mine (and my brothers) since the movie came out!  (and this is the 20th anniversary of the movie!)  Where did that time go!!??

As I said in my first "Phil" post, I recommend that everyone get to see the hoopla of Groundhog Day in Punxsutawney.  We were told that the phenomena had grown from 1000 people before the movie to now 25,000 to 30,000 people 20 years later!!!!  Because this year was on a weekend, more people came!  And here is another fact....We met people who lived in Punxsutawney for years and have never been to the Knob.  People come from "everywhere else" to see it.  And I believe this is because of the movie!  The Inner Circle "Men" are an elite group of about 20 men who "take care" of the Phil.  Putting on this whole Day takes months and months of preparation for these men.  They wear their tuxes and top hats all day.  We saw a few of them downtown, walking around talking to the people.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Phil (part three)

We are now downtown....and it is cold and it is snowing!  We walked through the Barclay Tent area (the downtown area green).  There were vendors for both crafts and food.  There were a lot of Groundhog "stuff"!  We were cold though, so we went into the one hotel that Punxsutawney has and they had more vendors - we bought Groundhog cookies, Ground "hog" jerky, Groundhog t-shirts, hats, greeting cards and a bunch of other things!!  Then to the library to see Phil in his real home.  He lives at the library year round!!!

My brother read about the Hall of Fame induction and wanted to see it.  Since I love the Weather Channel, of course I wanted to see it also.  It was now about 11:00 and we were starving since we ate breakfast at 4:00 am.  We went to the local coffee shop/diner.  It was sort of like the one in the movie, but not really......The food was good, so we went back downtown to find the Weather Discovery Center.  It was a fun place for the kids.  Cristina was able to be a meteorologist on the green screen and they had a bunch of other hands on activities on weather.  The Center is in the old post office building and has a lot of history.  The induction was held in the foyer area and there were probably about 100 people.  It was a tight squeeze, but we got there early and got great spots to watch.   We had no idea that Phil and the Inner Circle (top hat) was coming also, so we were very excited!  

The Induction of Jim Cantore into the Hall of Fame.  My niece had the best seat in the house, on the floor in front of the podium!!

This is Danny Rubin, the screenwriter of the movie, Groundhog Day, with my brother and myself.  We got to talk to him as he stood with us at the induction.

Here is my brother Chris after the induction.  They wouldn't let him hold Phil, but he got close to the cylinder chamber that they keep him in and got his picture.  That was really fortunate!!

It was probably around 2:30 and we are pretty exhausted, so we decided to say goodbye to Punxsutawney and head back to our hotel.  At 3:00, I took a HOT shower and we all napped until 5:00.

We went out for dinner at 6:00 (we had to find a non-smoking restaurant)!  We came back to the room and what did we watch?????  Groundhog Day, the movie!  (of course!!) :0)

Monday, February 4, 2013

More on Phil (Part two)

We drove out to PA.  We hit snow squalls that were incredible whiteouts!  I have never driven in such crazy weather....but I now understand how there are car pileups in the midwest!  You couldn't see in front of you and then five minutes later, you would round a bend (read: mountain) and the sun would be out....it was crazy! (no other word for it).   This was continual for about two hours!

It took us 6-1/2 hours to get to Brookville where our hotel was.  Hotels in and around Punxsutawney have been sold out since last March!!!!  We were lucky to get two rooms (and they were smoking rooms).  The cast of characters on this trip included my husband and me, my brother Chris, his wife and two daughters.  I forgot my camera so had to rely on others.....

We got to the hotel and went out for dinner and then for Febreeze....it was really bad in that room!!!

In the hotel rooms was a ton of Groundhog information - there was so much going on downtown........ weddings,

We went to bed early because we knew that 3:30 am was the designated wake up time!  Brookville is 20 miles north of Punxsutawney (and that was the absolute closest hotel we could get).  Our hotel was filled with Groundhog Day people and the hotel started the continental breakfast at 4:00 am!! Nice hotel!  Coffee was desperately needed!  We left the hotel at 4:15 and arrived in Punxsutawney at 4:45, but we got a little lost and ended up at Walmart around 5:00.  There are designated large parking lots all over town and Walmart is the closest to Gobblers Knob.  We found the ticket booths and bought our tickets for the Knob ($5.00 a person).  They run constant school buses from the designated parking lots up to the Knob, starting at 3:00 am through 7:00 am.  We got in our bus and headed up the hill.  (You can walk up the hill but it is literally straight up for 1-1/2 miles - no thank you!  Especially when it is 2 degrees!  So, it is now about 5:30 and there is great music playing and the Inner Circle Men are talking to the people in the crowd.  There is a huge bonfire on the left side of the stage and there are warming tents in the back.  My nieces had to go to the warming tents with my sister-in-law.  It was brutally cold.  Because the music was really good, I danced the whole time and kept warm that way (Zumba paid off).

 Here are my hubby and I at the Knob.  It was probably about 8 degrees at this point.  Below are the dancers on the stage.  If you look carefully, you can see the stump (about 5 feet tall) where Phil is kept!

At about 6:15, the fireworks started for a full 25 minutes.

Then Jim Cantore came up on stage, there were a couple of people talking and then more music to get the crowd all excited.....Then the parade of Inner Circle (the men in top hats).  They talk about the prognostication and then PHIL!!!  And he predicted spring!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So, now there are 25,000 (maybe 30,000) people trying to catch busses back downtown!!!  We went to the warming tents for about 1/2 hour until they told us we had to leave!  Near the warming tents was a booth for visitpa.com.  We were able to get a couple of the 2013 slinkies.  The man who made the slinky was from PA and they were giving special Slinkies to those who knew what to ask for.  (we had heard the commercial on the radio on the way from Brookville).  Hopefully, some day it will be worth something??

We also went to the information booth for Gobblers Knob and they were giving out Groundhog Day tokens below.  We were lucky to get these also.....we met some pretty great people who filled us in on all the fun stuff, we would have never known about!!  There weren't a lot of people who knew about these!!!

We had to wait 45 minutes for the bus to get to Walmart.  The picture above is the Groundhog Sign while we were waiting for the bus, and also the Gobblers Knob sign that we never even saw when we pulled up at 5:45 in the morning.  (The busses pulled up six at a time and went down the hill - they had a pretty good rotation going on!!)

Everyone but me went in to Walmart for new socks and warmer gloves! I took off my socks and boots and warmed my toes on the heating vents in the car.....We then got into our cars and drove downtown.  It is now about 9:00 in the morning and we have already been up and at it for six hours.  See Part Three to follow tomorrow.

Superbowl commercial 2013

Who can guess which one was my favorite? 

It had a little something to do with a farmer..............


Sunday, February 3, 2013

Groundhog Day and Punxsutawney, PA

I am not sure where to begin with this story.  I think it may take up a few blogs!

First of all....some fun facts!

1.  2013 was the 2nd coldest Groundhog Day on record since the 1800's!  It was 2 degrees when we got to the top of Gobbler's Knob!  12 degrees when we left the Knob!  The Knob is 1-1/2 miles straight up a mountain!

2.  Phil is the cutest rodent I have ever seen!

3.  Punxsutawney has approximately 6,000 residents.

4.  Yet, there were approximately 25,000 people (some say 30,000) at the top of the Knob in 2013!

5.  At 6:00 AM, on the Knob, they have the most fantastic display of fireworks - it is the 2nd best fireworks display that I have ever seen in my life!

6.  There are only a few homes for sale in Punxsutawney because people really do want to live there!

7.  Groundhog Day, the movie, was not filmed in Punxsutawney!

8.  Punxsutawney has a Weather Discovery Center and this year, they elected Jim Cantore from the Weather Channel into the Meteorologist Hall of Fame which is located at the Weather Discovery Center.  I was five feet from Jim during his induction!  Awesome!  Truly Fun!!

9.  Danny Rubin was the screenplay writer for the movie, Groundhog Day, and I stood next to him during the Jim Cantore induction at the Hall of Fame and I had my picture taken with him!  As soon as my niece gets the picture to me, I'll post!

10.  Spring is around the corner!!!!!  (Best news of all)

11. Similar to the cows in NYC and the horses in Saratoga, Punxsutawney has a ton of large groundhogs all over downtown!!!  See picture!!

As you can see, we were so, very bundled up for this picture.  Layers were a necessity!

There is so, so, so much more to tell and I have pictures....so I'll take some time this week to blog a few posts.

I have to say this, though!  If you EVER get the chance to go to Punxsutawney for Groundhog Day, you HAVE to go.  This is true AMERICANA and our heritage (whether it's fact or fiction), but witnessing the whole event was truly wonderful and one of the 10 best days of my life.....even though I froze and stayed in a SMOKING room in the hotel (yuk) and it snowed all day!  I have some truly wonderful memories and I can't wait to tell you more!!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Happy Groundhog Day

I'm here in Punxsutawney.  Hopefully, by tomorrow night, I'll be able to blog about it and let you know how it went!

This picture is from National Geographic, 2005 - I will be in that crowd somewhere!

Friday, February 1, 2013

We are on our way!!


                                                                                    Picture Credit: Wikipedia