Saturday, December 30, 2006

Go Go Go

Greetings From SoCal.

I'm having a wonderful time. The wedding was amazing. I didn't get a lot of pictures, but I will remember it. I'll try to upload what I can, when I get the chance.

It's been fun seeing so many people, and I love staying at the Krolik house. I'm totally hooked on the game Apples To Apples.

Geoff thinks there shouldn't be an issue getting home tomorrow, but I'll call the airline tomorrow morning and be sure. I've missed the boys so much, it's really hard when I talk to them on the phone. It'll be hard to leave here too, but at least I can say I'll be back this summer. And 2007 has a few of our friends here coming to CO. Yay!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Going To California

I leave early tomorrow morning for (hopefully) sunny California. A welcome break from snowy, slushy, yucky Colorado. I'm going to miss Geoff and Elijah, but it will be nice to be Melissa for a few days, instead of Mommy.

We ventured out into the real world as a family. Real world meaning out of our neighborhood. The roads are in pretty good shape, it seems just our neighborhood is stuck in the crap. We went out to Cherry Creek and it was nice to be around people. We swung by our old Safeway to pick a few provisions for the boys, as the next snow storm is going to hit tomorrow, we wanted to be sure to have plenty of milk and eggs on hand. On the trip home, we visited Home Depot. We were not able to get everything there we wanted. As you enter the store, there is a sign alerting you that they are out of snow shovels, snow blowers, and ice melt. What can you do.

I contacted the county to let them know my disapproval of their attitude "we don't plow residential streets" and essentially said you better hope there isn't an emergency on our streets because I doubt emergency vehicles could get through to us. Fat lot of good it'll do, but at least I said something. We got mail today, that makes two deliveries since last Tuesday. Whoo-hoo! (shaking my head in disappointment). Now we just need to get the trash picked up.

Keep us all in your prayers. Let's hope this next storm isn't as bad. Obviously with me taking the camera to the wedding, there won't be any new pictures of the storm in the Blizzard 2006 picture file. But I added some more today.

Gotta go spend some time with the hubby. Since I doubt I'll get around to it on Sunday, Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Happy Holidays

Christmas Day was pretty good at Casa Armstrong. I was up early, and Geoff and I opened our stockings. We finished up and had some breakfast and coffee. Elijah got up shortly after that around 7:40 and he had some breakfast too. Homemade cinnamon buns (or as Elijah calls them "bums"). Then we set in for our session of gift opening. Elijah had fun, but after a while, he was getting tired of opening gifts. At one point we gave him a present to open and it put it right in the trash bag. He did seem to like most of his gifts, but I think it may have been a little overwhelming for him. Next year, we'll just let him open what he wants, and save the rest for later. But we all got some good stuff!

By 9:30am, I was ready for a nap. I felt exhausted and looking at Elijah's pile of books and toys had me worried. Thankfully Geoff took care of tidying up after Christmas, so the house seemed back to normal. That in itself made me feel so much better.

We took a walk around the neighborhood after lunch, since it was a beautiful sunny day. We found the best exit route for Geoff to get to work today. We then spent the rest of the day hanging around the house. We had a yummy ham for dinner, and just continued to reflect on how blessed we are.

Now for the fun news. We're getting another snow storm coming. When? Thursday. When am I flying to CA? Thursday. Please please pray that we can get to and from the airport with ease, and that I won't encounter any problems.

So had this storm not hit, I'd be out shopping today. As it is, I'll be home. Geoff will go into work for a few hours to do essential magnet stuff, and then he'll hit the Trails to get in some exercise.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! I'll close with a quote from A Christmas Story.

Mr. Parker: Where's the glue?
Mother: We're out of glue.
Mr. Parker: You used up all the glue on purpose!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Christmas Eve

Merry Christmas!

Bah Humbug!

Christmas Eve

Spent the day at home, Geoff baking, Elijah helping, me napping. Tonight Geoff will play Christmas carols on his violin, and stockings will be stuffed. We'll take a family picture, and I'll post that tonight.

We'll be online tomorrow, and I'll be uploading pics and videos all day.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Day 4

Good Day, and welcome to Day 4.

Sigh. Argh! Sigh.

Well, like idiots, idiots who need groceries, we ventured out to Safeway this morning. True we had enough food to get us through a few more days, we were getting low on milk for Geoff and diapers. We figured the best bet was to go early, while the roads are cold and not slushy. Took some to get into the rut on the front street. Took a lot to get onto the main street in our neighborhood (it's uphill). Once we hit the main main road that leads to Safeway, there were portions of it that were only one lane. We headed first to the gas station, which was out of all the cheap gas, so we had to get premium. Then we faced a very yucky parking lot (Safeway is going to hear about that!). Geoff said it wouldn't be so bad if they sanded. There were delivery trucks blocking entrances/exits, so you have to navigate to find your way.

Once inside, I worried about what we'd find. Talking with my friend Kirstin (who is due exactly a month before me), she said yesterday her grocery store was out of milk. Safeway was pretty well stocked, they had a lot of milk. It was busy, but not so bad. We got everything we needed, plus some stuff I figured the boys would need once I go away next weekend. We checked out and Geoff found out from the clerk, they just got their shipment of milk last night. Once we left the store, we faced the drama of trying to get home. The only exit that doesn't have a hill was blocked by a stuck Budweiser truck. We tried one exit, and it wasn't going anywhere. We tried a second exit, and couldn't get the car up that hill (the driver in front of us didn't help that situation). So we drove back around to get to the first exit we tried. We got half way up, then we couldn't move. Geoff jumped out to push and I tried to gun it. The driver behind us got out of his truck and helped to push. We eventually got up to the top, and Geoff kept pushing until I almost got onto the road and then jumped in. We drove to the light to do a U-turn, switched spots, and drove home.

The drive home seemed like it would be okay. We worried a little turning into our front street, and we bottomed out good (hope there is no real damage). Now we had to hope we could turn into the small path Geoff shoveled to get on the driveway.

Obviously we're home, and we're not going to church tomorrow.

I called the HOA, looking for answers. I left a firm message saying, look it's in the bylaws you are responsible for the sidewalks leading to the main road, and if our street is never going to see a sand truck or plow, you better provide a means to get to the bus stop. Not even ten minutes later, I got a call back. No, our street probably won't get plowed. It's on the bottom of the priority list with the county. But the sidewalk is supposed to get done today by the company they hired. So come Tuesday, when Geoff has to go tend to his magnet, he should be able to take the bus. Now we have to hope things improve ten fold by Thursday for my flight.

Oh yeah, we still haven't gotten any mail, despite the fact that the postal workers went back to work yesterday. I seriously wonder if we'll see any today. They are supposed to deliver on Christmas Day to make up for it all. I do not envy them.

Yes, we're stuck here. Yes, we're frustrated. But let's focus on the positive. We have each other, we have a warm home, we have food, and we have power. Things could be A LOT worse. We could be one of the thousands of people stuck at DIA who won't get to be with loved ones for Christmas.

My loved ones

Holiday Ha Ha's

Friday, December 22, 2006

Day 3

We're doing fine, maybe going a little stir crazy, but we're okay. The ruts in our street are still too much for Gary to handle, so we'll stay homebound for another day. I'd be bummed if I had to miss church Sunday morning. But maybe we should plan on bringing our shovel to church with us, just in case. :)

The sun came out today, so the driveway is bone dry. I walked up to the main street outside our neighborhood to assess the situation. If Geoff wanted to take the bus to work, he'd still have to hoof it through the snow, as the sidewalk has not been shoveled. We think it's the responsibility of the HOA, so rest assured, I'll be taking it up with them. I expect to be sending out letters or making phones calls to the city as well.

The only good thing that has come of this storm, is it seems to draw the neighbors together. We met and bonded with our neighbors next door. I brought them some of the cookies we baked (the cutouts).

So everyone don't worry about us we're fine. I'll continue to add pictures to the Blizzard album on Shutterfly.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Let It Snow?

The backyard.

The backyard. You can barely see the BBQ.

From the upstairs window, looking down the street.

The front yard.

Yesterday's pictures were taken about 3:30pm. These are from today at 11am. And the snow is still falling. The governor declared it's a state of emergency. National Guard was trying to get people out of their cars on the freeway to shelters. But Geoff says it's a storm in December, so there are no leaves on trees, no danger of power lines being knocked out by branches. We have power, we have food, we have warmth. We're doing okay.

Our poor kids though. We'll be talking about the Blizzard of '06 for Christmas for years and years. :)

*Update*-pics of the blizzard are up on the Shutterfly album. See Geoff's shovel work that took him 2 hours.

Pirates Of The Caribbean 3: At World's End

Thanks to Roland for this.

Here's a picture of Keith Richards, as Jack Sparrow's father.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Baby It's Cold Outside

The backyard.

The front yard.

Because I wanted to share this blizzard with you. Makes that trip to California next week look even better! Here's what the weather website has to say:
Moderate to heavy snow will continue over the urban corridor through the early evening hours. Snowfall rates of 1 to 2 inches per hour are expected. North winds of 20 to 35 mph with gusts as high as 45 will cause extensive blowing and drifting snow especially east of I-25 with visbilities near zero at times. Travel will be nearly impossible and is not recommended.


We're being hit with a winter storm. Started last night after we went to bed, and when the snow settles in a few days, we should have 24" of snow, and a White Christmas.

So Elijah and I will be housebound the next few days. Makes me glad I took the opportunity to walk down main street Southlands yesterday. Despite the mild wind, it was nice to be out. I feel bad for Geoff who is going to have drive to work the next few days.

Not much going on this week. Just getting excited about Christmas. So is Elijah (see his blog for the funny video I took of him). He hasn't tried to open any presents, but I have been looking at the shapes of them.

I am hoping to make it out shopping on the 26th. We have our eye on a Christmas decoration for next year, and I need to check out Hobby Lobby to find a stocking to make for the baby. If I get it early, I leave myself the whole year to complete it. I may not be able to sew, stitch, or quilt, but give me a felt stocking project, and it's just my speed. It's funny looking at Elijah's stocking, I almost want to make a new stocking for me.

We're trying to catch Christmas specials on tv, but some movies are far too butchered, and that's no fun (for example, Scrooged). I may just have to actually buy Christmas DVDs. All I have is Merry Christmas Mr Bean, The Toy That Saved Christmas, and The Ref. We watched The Ref on the weekend, so I'll close with that.

Gus: Caroline and Lloyd will get the coffee and deserts then we'll be opening presents.
Connie Chasseur: We can't open presents til midnight.
Gus: Why not?
Connie Chasseur: Because it's not Christmas until midnight!
Gus: We'll be changing the rules a little bit. We're opening the presents now. Not later, now. Why? We're adults, and we can open our presents WHENEVER WE WANT!

Monday, December 18, 2006

Hits Close To Home

Next year, I'm starting my shopping early!

Sunday, December 17, 2006


We did some great family stuff this weekend. Friday night we checked out Denver Zoolights for the second year. Elijah enjoyed it much more this time around (see his blog for more info). Yesterday we bought our ham for Christmas Day dinner. Today we went swimming and then came home and baked some Christmas cutouts.

Elijah ate some of Nana's fruitcake, and seemed to enjoy it. He also had some cookies. Pictures of all our holiday activities (and Christmas Day pics eventually) are/will be viewable on the shutterfly website (link on the left).

One more week!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Christmas Joke

I got this from my mom, and I thought it was funny.

A Canadian Christmas...
A man in Newfoundland calls his son in Calgary two days before Christmas and says, "I hate to ruin your day, but I have to tell you that your mother and I are divorcing; forty-five years of misery is enough."

"Pop, what are you talking about?" the son screams.

"We can't stand the sight of each other any longer," the father says. "We're sick of each other, and I'm sick of talking about this, so you call your sister in Vancouver and tell her."

Frantic, the son calls his sister, who explodes on the phone. "No way they're getting divorced!" she shouts, "I'll take care of this."

She calls Newfoundland immediately and screams at her father, "You are not getting divorced. Don't do a single thing until I get
there. I'm calling my brother back, and we'll both be there by tomorrow. Until then, don't do a thing. DO YOU HEAR ME?" and hangs up.

The old man hangs up his phone and turns to his wife. "Okay," he says, "they're coming for Christmas and paying their own way."

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

The World Loses A Gem

He's a very funny actor. I think I'm going to go watch While You Were Sleeping (he plays Sandra Bullock's future father-in-law).


If I never have to go into a mall parking lot again, I'd be happy. :)

My shopping is done. I am serious about doing gift cards next year, cause they are good gifts, and ideally they don't involve driving around to a dozen different stores. Plus, I can start buying those in the summer.

Yep, I'm up early. I'm heading to the post office for the 7am opening to send the last of my Canadian gifts. No, they won't make it there on time, but it was (mostly) unavoidable. I'm over that too. No point in being upset.

Now I just want to focus on spending this blessed holiday with my family. I love the lights, I love the music, and I love seeing it all through my son's eyes.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Life Is Good

The bunny who visits our yard

With the release of Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest this week, we were finally able to see it! What an excellent movie, equally as good as the first one. We bought it knowing we'd love it, and we did. I'm happy that 2007 isn't so far away, I'm anxious to see the conclusion.

I don't really feel like I did a ton this weekend. Saturday I went to the Trails and walked. I haven't been to my aquasize class in a while, I may try to get to one of the daytime classes, and see if that works out better. I just don't like having the class at 6pm, and then making it a late dinner.

Sunday we had a good church service, and I made Rice Krispie Treats. Mmm.

My Christmas shopping is going okay. I have a bunch of stuff waiting to get wrapped and shipped to Canada, but the thing I ordered online has not come yet. So, some gifts just won't get there in time. Even if I rushed them, Canada Post and Customs suck and there would be no guarantee they'd arrive on time as promised. I think next year either everyone gets giftcards, or checks. :)

My Christmas shopping for U.S. people is so much less stress. I'll pick up Geoff's gift from Elijah this week, as well as Kelly's & Elijah's gifts. Geoff and I aren't exactly exchanging a gift this year. We decided to get the family membership to Trails, and we're paying it off monthly. So we'll give each other a few stocking stuffers and that'll be it.

It's almost a month to my 30th birthday. Just mentioning that.

I want to be excited about my trip to Irvine in 18 days, but I'm more focused on Christmas. But I have my plans set with the Pursley's & Eseras. And I told Cindy she's got me all day on the Saturday. I mostly foresee hanging out, and not doing much else. We're going back in July, so there is no pressure to accomplish anything. Though I would have liked to hit Disneyland (naturally).

I'll close with a quote from Pirates Of The Caribbean:Dead Man's Chest.

Jack Sparrow: How did you get here?
Will Turner: Sea turtles, mate. A pair of them strapped to my feet.
Jack Sparrow: Not so easy, is it?

Thursday, December 07, 2006

My Car

Evidently this should be my next car. Yeah right, like I have money to buy a new car. Hee hee! I love how kid-friendly it is.

You Should Drive a Saturn Sky

You're sleek and smooth, and you need a car to match your hot persona.
Besides, sometimes you want your top up - and sometimes you want it down.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Helping Out Some Friends

For everyone to consider:

Three Kroliks, a Gustafson, and a Stanley are participating in the L.A. Marathon. Crazy gals are going to walk the 26.2 miles. Please consider donating to them, with the proceeds going to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I've got a link on the left side of my blog, A Team In Training. The website has a place to donate, as well as any other information you'd want.

For my Canadian readers:

Something has to be done about the youth violence & the justice system. One father who lost his son has started a petition to hopefully see the changes that need to be made to prevent more "kids" killing each other without serious consequences. Visit the website, read up on it, and find out where you can sign the petition.

Monday, December 04, 2006

What Happened?

Evidently my blog wasn't loading this weekend. I've since refreshed the whole thing, and that seems to have fixed it. Good thing I had people telling me they missed it, otherwise I'd have never known it wasn't working.

I'd say the weekend was pretty successful in accomplishing errands. We got practically all the Christmas shopping done, well, the stuff being shipped to the Great White North.

Date night was fun. We ended up eating at McCabe's Irish Pub at Southlands. The food was tasty, and it's probably someplace we wouldn't bring Elijah, though there were kids there. If it had been warmer, we might have wander around Southlands longer. It sure was nice to get a dinner alone and free babysitting. :)

Sunday Geoff made fudge (yum-o) and we had leftover turkey stew that I had made earlier last week. Last week I also made peanut butter cookies, and now Elijah keeps pointing at the cookie jar asking for cookies. I have to show him it's empty. We'll likely make chocolate chip cookies this weekend. Sadly cookies never make it to the freezer.

I'm feeling much better this week, not as stressed, not as overwhelmed. Thank you to everyone who kept me in their thoughts and lent an ear. Especially to Geoff for taking over most of the Elijah duty this weekend. Love you babe!

This week, no House, but I have new Top Chef & Scrubs to watch. I also suspect I'll get to watch a movie I've been wanting to see for a while.

I think I've watched Elf a few too many times this last week and a half. So I'll close with a quote from it.

Eugene: [brainstorming for a new book] What about this: a tribe of asparagus children, but they're self-conscious about the way their pee smells.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Friday, December 01, 2006

Doing Something For Me

I was up for two hours last night in the middle of the night, my mind was just racing. And then when I woke up this morning, I felt like crying. I just felt so overwhelmed by a multitude of things. Sigh. I'm feeling a little better, but I think I need to do something for myself this weekend. Even if it's just for an hour.

Right now, listening to Fountains Of Wayne is enough to make smile. I think I'll make a mix cd for the drive to pick up Geoff.