Friday, September 30, 2011

September 30, 2011 - Random Comments

I received an email from a guy who I need to speak with telling me he is available at 11am PDT.  If I wasn't wearing a watch that had two faces and told me what time it was in Zurich and what time it was on the East Coast of the US I would have trouble making the conversion.  Yes, it's only a 6 hour time difference.  I finally had to google what time it would be here and then I had to count back 6 hours.  I know people (L and my sister) who can do this in their heads without any apparent effort.

I just finished the Hunger Games Trilogy.  I couldn't figure out how to write a review of the books individually so I assumed I would just do one of the series.  Well I literally just finished the series and my immediate reaction to the last couple of chapters and the ending was "This sucks."  Crude but true.  Don't misunderstand, I enjoyed the series I really did, but I wanted something different for Katniss.  Here's a flawed girl who is being used/manipulated by everyone up until the very end.  Seriously, how much crap do we have to heap on the girl?  I don't know maybe I wanted a different happy ending.  Regardless, if I'm not the last person on the planet to read the series I would recommend it.

It's that time of year in Zurich when I appear to be congested all the time.  I'd like that to stop as well thank you.

Happy Friday



Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

September 29, 2011 – Cold


Isn’t there some rule that says if you work out your metabolism speeds up?  If my metabolism speeds up shouldn’t I be warm?  Where’s a hot flash when you want one?  The weather has been perfect, high’s in the low 70’s low’s in the low 60’s.  It’s not even winter yet and I’ve spent the last 3 nights sleeping with a fleece sweatshirt on.  That’s just not normal.  Well fine it might be normal-ish for me, but it shouldn’t be.  I should be not cold.  Wow, although as I type that I am thinking “I’d rather be cold than hot.  Cold, you just put on more layers, maybe a hat.  Hot?  There isn’t a whole lot you can do about being too hot.  There are only so many layers you can strip off before you’re still hot and naked.  Never mind… I’m good.  Not cold at all.  Comfy.  That’s me.  Comfy.  Fleece, I like fleece.

I hope I didn't just jinx myself....

Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

September 28, 2011 – Nutella


Over the last couple of years quite a few people have encouraged me to try Nutella, especially peanut butter and Nutella.  My reaction has always been the same.  Why on earth would anyone want to eat hazelnut spread? 

Well when we went on our road trip I decided what the heck, let’s give it a whirl (besides L suggested I would like Nutella as well).  So I made a couple of peanut butter and Nutella sandwiches for the ride.  Now I’d like to report to all of the people who have suggested I try it.  A pox on you!  Nutella doesn’t taste like hazelnut anything.  It’s CHOCOLATE spread.  As if I needed one more delivery method of chocolate into my system.  I am officially addicted to Nutella and peanut butter.   Seriously, it’s like eating peanut butter cups for lunch and getting to pretend it’s a sandwich.  Originally I bought the small jar but once that was gone I graduated to the big jar of Nutella.  At least I haven’t gone to the extra large jar.  Have any of you eaten a peanut butter and Nutella wrap?  I have.  Did I mention a curse?  Damn you all, if I hadn’t already started running more consistently prior to this new… problem… I would certainly have had to now.

I’ve even decided to introduce my friend D to Nutella, I’m thinking the next dessert 1st night we have we can put Nutella over icecream.



Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

September 24, 2011 - Not the Best Start to A Saturday

Arrgghhh
I realize I don't normally post an update on the weekend, but this morning I took L into Zurich and got my very 1st speeding ticket.  Sort of.  I haven't "received" the actual ticket yet, nor do I know how much said ticket will cost.  Switzerland uses traffic cameras.  Now I have to admit, they are in plain sight.  Big ugly grey things.  How you know you're getting a ticket?  you get flashed and not in the man in a trench coat sort of way (thankfully).  A flash of light fires they snap your picture and sooner or later a ticket comes in the mail.

The sad thing is, I saw the camera.  I looked at my speedometer and thought 35kph, "ok I'm fine" then the flash of light.  Damn it all.  I had no idea I was in a 3kph zone.  I should have known, I really should have, but I had just turned off a main road that was in the city and is 50kph and I didn't see any telltale signs (giant 30's painted in the road, they do that here... it's helpful) telling me that the speed limit changed.  Now I know that I have seen general signs posted when you cross into Switerland that says 120 Highway, 50 outside the city, 30 inside the city so I don't really have an excuse and I should have realized that going a block off the main road running thru the city would equate to "in the city" but I didn't.

So now I get to wait for a ticket where the amount will be a surprise and I get to pray that the amount is not based on a % of annual income.  I've been told they do that, but I think it's for speeding in school zones.  Then again I obviously haven't a clue.

The silver lining: I didn't have the added stress of being pulled over by a Polezi.  *sigh*

Does this count as an adventure?

Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Friday, September 23, 2011

September 23, 2011 - TGIF


Before we came to Switzerland I used to work out 2 or 3 times a week.  I’ve had been doing that consistently for more than 10 years.  Sure some of the reasons were:
  • I like to eat and working out allows me that luxury. 
  • It’s a good stress reliever and helps keep my night terrors under control
  • When I don’t work out I have more aches and pains, especially in my shoulders.  Crazy I know. 
So, although I have been running fairly consistently I have not been doing any other kinds of workouts; and while we were on vacation walking around the various cities, my shoulders were killing me.  As a matter of fact the last time my shoulder(s) hurt like this was over 10 years ago.  Do you see a correlation with the timeframes?  Yep, 10+ years ago my shoulder felt like someone had stuck a hot poker in it and I was contemplating hacking it off with a butter knife, because it couldn’t hurt any worse.  I learned a couple of valuable lessons that day. 

  • Cold pain is not a problem for me, hot searing pain, I’m a big baby.
  • Nurses and Doctors get very upset with you when you explain you’ve taken 20+ Advil in the course of the day and it’s not touching the pain.
  • Ice packs are your friend.
A doctor’s visit and an x-ray later I was told that when my when the muscles around my shoulder get week, my shoulder slides in the socket and irritates the nerves. 

What was I saying?  Oh right, while we were on vacation walking around, I was experiencing an unpleasant yet mild version of discomfort; a HUGE clue that I need to do something about my not working out with weights.

Well the lovely L occasionally works out with a woman named Olivia.  I’ve met Olivia a couple of times when I have gone running with the two of them.  She seems very nice.  We made contact and today I am happy to report that I went to see her and we did a series of exercises that should strengthen my shoulders as well as a bunch of stability exercises.  Hey if my mind can’t be stable at least some part of me can be.  It felt really good, but oh my lord am I weak.  Weak Weak Weak.  I hate being weak, but that’s what 18 months of lazy gets me.  Oh and to make it an extra productive workout I ran to the session 4 miles.  The last mile was walk/run but I made it in a decent amount of time.  Sure once Olivia and I started working out I thought I might throw up, but it passed.  The feeling passed, I didn’t actually lose it.

Really this is just a long winded way of saying I feel good today and I’m pretty proud of myself.


Happy Friday Everyone.


Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

September 22, 2011 – Wien a.k.a. Vienna

Now why would I write the name Vienna as Wien?  So you can experience a little of my driving dilemma.  L and I were heading to Vienna and shortly after crossing into Austria we decided to make a quick stop because… there was a wind farm and I wanted a picture.  I don’t know, I like wind farms and I especially like when they are on “farms”.  I really don’t know why people complain that it’s going to ruin their view (typically said in the US on the east coast when they discuss putting windmills in the bodies of water).  Granted however, I’ve never seen a wind farm on the water, maybe it would ruin the look but I seriously doubt it.  Heck don’t houses ruin the view?  Anyway I’ve gotten off track. 

We stopped so I could take a picture but when we were going to get back onto the highway there were two entrance ramps and I was not sure which one to take.  I also have difficulty listening to the GPS lady, paying attention to the other vehicles, AND reading foreign language street signs.  So I count on L to read the street signs.  Needless to say the GPS lady is telling me to do something while pronouncing something in unintelligible English and I haven’t a clue which way to go.  I sure as heck don’t want to end up taking a wrong turn. 

L:         Take the one where it say “Vienna”. 

Me:      <starting to panic> “which one????”

L:         “The one right there that says Vienna”

Me:      <stopping car> “I don’t see anything that says Vienna”

L:         Points to a sign that say “Wien” and says “That one”

Me:      “oh… ”


Obviously L’s German lessons have been more successful than my water boarding sessions, as she pointed out Wien is Vienna written in the local language.  Needless to say we created a new point and shoot rule.  L would point and I would follow.

When we arrived  we put our stuff into the hotel and took a walk around to get our bearings.  One of the very 1st things we encountered… cupcakes.


This alone was enough to make Vienna L’s favorite stop



The best way I can describe Vienna is… everything (at least the buildings) is big.  As in really BIG.  Ginormous even.




This is the “summer palace”… seriously it’s small compared to the “everyday” palace.





Our last day there was a police escorted bike ride.  I’ve seen these before, a way to encourage people to ride bikes. At least that is what I assumed the purpose was, regardless it was fun to see all the people on bikes and some of the crazy bikes.

All I could think with this guy was “that’s a long way to fall”





There were also quite a few street performers, except that the majority of them were that typical, paint myself gold and stand absolutely still like a statue... but this guy, he had a really cool gimmick and was racking in the cash.



I have to admit that by the time we got to Vienna I was tired, we’d been doing a lot of running around the few days prior and I was missing the beastly boy.  As a result, we didn’t see as many things as we would have liked and if we were to do it over again we would have reversed the trip.  Vienna, Budapest, then Prague and we would have spent one extra day in Vienna and one less in Prague.





Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

September 21, 2011 - Prague Part 2

I should really be sharing things about Vienna but I'm fighting a head cold and a nap is calling me.  So...

While we were wandering around we ran into this art installation which I thought was pretty cool


 The Giant Metronome ... I'm not sure what the point of "this" metronome is but it's functional.  Maybe the skateboarders who use the park behind it, us it to keep time

The changing of the guard at the palace.  Alright, fine.. the guard marching away after having been changed


Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

September 20, 2011 – Budapest

I think this was my favorite city of the three that we visited, although L and I were so exhausted by the time we went to Vienna that I’m probably not giving that city as fair a shake as I should.

Budapest was just a fun city to walk around and our hotel was located right outside a main public transportation hub and riding the trams/buses was easy.  Well easy because L understands these things and I just go along for the ride.

The 1st thing we did when we arrived was hop onto a “hop on hop off” bus tour.  We really just wanted to get a sense of what there was to see and where everything was located.  This really worked out well, because it gave us a plan of attack for the next couple of days and let us group together what we wanted to see.



A view of the city from the Statue of Liberty Monument;



yes they have a statue of liberty but it’s not ours….





Did you know Budapest has Thermal Baths?  Well, fine, I was unaware but L knew so we packed with the intention of going to one.  Now I freely admit that going to a thermal bath is a little outside of my comfort zone.  Fine it’s weird but it’s way outside of my comfort zone.  L pointed out that it’s like going to a public pool.  I pointed out, that would also be outside of my comfort zone.  To which she pointed out that I was an idiot (not her words) and had been to lots of public pools.  Somehow going on a beach vacation and using the hotel pool was never equated to a public pool in my mind. *sigh*.  In fact, there are so many things outside my comfort zone I could dedicate a blog just to them.

Anyway, back to the topic.  We got a recommendation from the concierge, I screwed up my courage, and we went to a thermal bath/spa.   At this particular spa they separate the men and women, for which I am grateful.  I will also point out that the following observations:

(a)    As L put it, not all bathing suits are created equal

(b)   L and I were seriously overdressed when compared to a few of the women.  In fact anyone who was not naked would have been over dressed.

I want to point out that I’m actually pretty comfortable with my body.  Sure I’m not gorgeous, but I think I’m ok looking and frankly this is my body, it’s what I have had to work with for 46 years and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.  That being said, I can only hope to have ½ the body image/comfort in my own skin thing that some of these naked women displayed.  There was this one woman who had to be 400 pounds and she was amazing.  I tried not to stare but it’s difficult, here’s this large woman in her birthday suit floating in the pool as relaxed as can be.  Some day I want to be able to do that, not the 400 pounds part, the “I don’t care what people see” part. 

The spa itself; I didn’t really know what to expect but wow was the water HOT.  There were two pools, one that was 38 degrees celsius and the other was 34 degrees.  I loved the wicked hot one, it felt great on my aching shoulders but at some point when you are in water and the water is making you sweat.  It’s time to move.  You wouldn’t think that 4 degrees makes a big difference but it does.

They also had a regular pool for men and women.  I did NOT go into that one.  Ironically they made everyone where caps on their heads.  I assume to keep the hair under control.  What was ironic was the guy who was balding wearing a shower cap on is head to keep what little hair he had under control, but my god the guy looked like he was wearing a sweater for all the hair on his back and chest. Seriously, the shower cap was ineffective.

 
Random Pictures:









Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Monday, September 19, 2011

September 19, 2011 – Praha a.k.a. Prague


The path to hell is paved with the best of intentions… the same can be said of blogging while on vacation when all you have available is your iPod.  I’m sure you’ll forgive the silence.


I am happy to report that we were able to find each of our destinations and hotels with minimal stress and panic.  Sure there were a few incidents where I was a little freaked out trying to figure out if I should be driving on the tram tracks or next to them or if I was about to head the wrong way down a one way street.  There is just something a bit unnerving about (a) driving in a foreign country (b) being completely unable to read the street signs.  I’ve gotten a little more comfortable with signs written in German.  Not that I necessarily know what they say, but I can at least identify the word in comparison to a map or the GPS.  Well, if I thought German was tough it seems downright easy compared to the Czech alphabet.

Our first real adventure in the Czech Republic was stopping on the highway to get gas.  Now this might not seem that exciting except that the bill was 1,575.00 ck for ½ a tank of gas.  Thankfully I had a credit card but both L and I were left wondering what the heck the exchange rate between Euro’s and CK’s were.  We said a quick prayer that it wasn’t a 2 for 1 exchange.

We did a lot of running around in Prague, checking out the buildings and the various sights.  These are some of my favorites:

L and I in Prague (we did take a picture of our feet but we figured why not show all of us)


We spotted this walkway that is so narrow they have a “traffic” light to tell you when you can go.  Two people can not fit at the same time:



Then there was the astronomical clock.  I have no idea how it tells time, but it appears to tell the month/day and time:

The Jewish Quarter:

It's mind boggling that they have so many people buried in this small area, because that was what was available during the German occupation.



Can someone tell me what the deal is with Prague and Marionette’s?  They are EVERYWHERE oh and the Obama marionette was a big hit with tourists walking by.  I’m not sure if it was intended as a political statement or not….






I also reaffirmed that I have a "thing" about gargoyles or gargoyle like things...



Random things:



Someone obviously ticked this guy off...

This guy too..


 


Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

September 10, 2011 - Road Trip Day 1

Typing on my iPod is a nightmare so let's just say: we made it to Prague, having a blast, taking lot's of pics Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Friday, September 9, 2011

September 9, 2011 - Book Reviews


The Abby by Chris Culver
4 out of 5 stars
Mystery, Crime

Product Description:

“Ash Rashid is a former homicide detective who can't stand the thought of handling another death investigation. In another year, he'll be out of the department completely. That's the plan, at least, until his niece's body is found in the guest home of one of his city's most wealthy citizens. The coroner calls it an overdose, but the case doesn't add up. Against orders, Ash launches an investigation to find his niece's murderer, but the longer he searches, the more entangled he becomes in a case that hits increasingly close to home. If he doesn't solve it fast, his niece won't be the only family member he has to bury.”

I downloaded this book from Amazon because it was $0.99.  I admit that might not be the best reason to read a book, but considering I’ve never read anything by Chris Culver in the past; it was as good a reason as any.  In the long run I think it will work out.  I really enjoyed the book.  Ash, is a former detective studying to become a lawyer.  He’s a bit of an alcoholic, although I believe he refers to it as a hobby that involves alcohol.  The story opens with Ash doing a death notification.  We quickly find out that this isn’t any ordinary notification; the girl who has died is his niece. 

From this point forward, the reader follows Ash through his investigation into his niece’s death and the plot twists that occur.  Ash is definitely a flawed character, but you find yourself rooting for him as he gets dragged further into the grey lines of what is right and wrong.

An excellent read.


Comments/Reviews of Lynn Galli’s Book:

Wasted Heart              4 out of 5 stars
Imaging Reality          4 out of 5 stars
Blessed Twice             4 out of 5 stars

I could write an individual review for each of these books but the fact is I would be repeating myself.  Below you will find the product description and here I’ll tell you that I could not put these books down.  Out of all of the characters my favorites where Jesse and M.  No they are not a couple, but they are very interesting.  I also really like that these “romance” stories have a plot, it’s not about falling into bed with someone, it’s about the development of the relationship itself.  In addition, there is an Epilogue at the end of each story that gives you and idea where the characters are down the road.  My only complaint is that I really want to find out more about all of the characters and where they are 10 years from now.  Wishful thinking, but in the meantime I’ll read any other book that Lynn Galli comes out with.


Wasted Heart by Lynn Galli

 Product Description:

“Austy Nunziata has spent two years pining for her married best friend and about the same amount of time berating herself for it. In fact, she’s so adept at trying to stamp out her feelings that she could probably write a How-To guide on the subject. One, move 3,000 miles away from your best friend. Two, get a time-consuming job so you don’t have time to think about your best friend. Three, hang out with new friends who aren’t anywhere as enchanting as your best friend. Four, get involved with a striking woman who is smart, sexy, caring and, most importantly, available, unlike your best friend. Five, hope the new love interest doesn’t find out about your pathetic best friend obsession before you have time to replace it with actual life-altering love.

Even following her own step-by-step process, Austy may not be able to redirect all of her misguided feelings. Becoming involved with Elise Bridie helps her realize how pointless her pining has been. But when Elise suspects that she harbors feelings for someone else, will their new found love survive the unrequited infatuation of Austy’s fantasies?”


Imagining Reality by Lynn Galli
Product Description:
“Considered Charlottesville’s most eligible lesbian, Jessie Ximena has recently grown tired of that status and has stopped dating entirely. She’d rather focus on the important things in life like her job, her family, and her friends. There will always be plenty of time for relationships when she feels like jumping back into the fray. If she finds someone to hold her interest, that is.

Lauren Aleric has been searching for Ms. Right since she began dating, but no one has yet filled the role. Her friends think that she’s too much of a romantic mush to settle. She wishes she could be more like her good friend Jessie, who seems perfectly happy dating casually. But mostly, she wishes she could be like her best friend, Austy, who’s just found her forever love.

Imagining Reality is the story of these two friends and how they discover that what they’re both looking for isn’t as far apart as they might think.”


Blessed Twice by Lynn Galli
Product Description

“The problem with starting over in another state after losing your partner is that your new friends don’t understand why you can’t just get over it. They never saw how you were together, how much you loved her, how she was your life. They only see a number: three, as in, the number of years since she died. That’s all the evidence they need to begin pressuring you to get back out there again. It doesn’t matter that you’ve told them to back off. No, they feel it is their duty to butt into your life and ambush you with blind dates.

This wasn’t a predicament Briony Gatewood anticipated when she relocated for tenure at a prestigious university. Yet after a year with her new friends, they’ve ceased being merely concerned and moved on to obnoxious. As if being fixed up wasn’t bad enough, the dean at her college just volunteered her to teach a potentially career damaging class. Along for the experimental course is the socially challenged M Desiderius, a fellow professor who won’t ever win a faculty popularity contest. But as they start working together, Briony begins to understand M’s aloofness and is intrigued by the shy, brilliant, passionate woman. Enough so that she’s starting to believe her friends when they say it’s time to move on. And M, as complicated as her past has been and reticent as she seems now, may be the perfect person to help Briony finally heal and love again.”



Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

September 8, 2011 - 9/11 10 Years later

I wanted to finish that title with "and I still want to punch someone in the face."

I’m a little surprised that I am going to blog about this topic, and I will say it’s probably the only time I will.  Being in Switzerland, I’m fairly well insulated from all the 10 year anniversary things that are going on in the US but I still encounter quite a bit on the web and in news streams.  Today I saw a headline “Conspiracy Theories of 9/11.”  I’ll blame that headline for this rant.

For the last 10 years my reactions to news clips and commentary have been consistent.  I get emotional; I don’t have any desire or need to “watch” news clips or photos from that day.  I don’t need to.  I saw them on that day and several days afterward.

No I was not in NYC when the planes crashed.  I was in Danbury, CT working in the Union Carbide building.  I was in a meeting with my boss when someone interrupted to say that a plane hit one of the towers.  Yes, we all had the same reaction, it was an accident and we continued on with our meeting.  Then we were interrupted again to find out that it was not an accident: far from it.  I had friends who worked in the building, fortunately mine were not inside when the first plane struck.  I think if you live in the Tri-State (CT, NY, NJ) area, it’s impossible to meet someone who doesn’t have some connection to that tragedy.  Regardless I think my reaction would still be the same to the events would be the same.  It was horrible, heart wrenching and to this day it’s still unfathomable to me.

We closed the office, no one could even imagine attempting to work.  The next few weeks there were fighter jets flying overhead circling NYC and the surrounding airspace.  Work was close enough to the boarder that you would occasionally see one making it’s loop.  It wasn’t really comforting, at least not to me.

I’ll also admit that it’s a really good thing I’ve never been in a position to have access to the mythical “red button” because I would have pushed it without a moment’s hesitation or remorse.  Hell, you might have hated President Bush but you should seriously be grateful that there wasn’t a President CAB at the time.  I’m not sure what would be left of the world if I’d been in charge but you can bet there would be a giant parking lot where the Middle East used to be.  At least that’s what my imagination says.  I have a vindictive/vengeful streak.  It takes a bit to push the right trigger to get me there.  Ten years later 9/11 still has that capacity for me and on those rare occasions when I encounter some university student carrying a sign or talking about how the US government was behind the attack I manage to cross the street because what I really want to do is smack them senseless.  Then again, as far as I am concerned they are already senseless. 

Oh and if you are going to leave a comment to tell me that “of course the Government was involved” I’m just going to delete it so don’t waste your time.

Now I'm going to go back to happy thoughts of road trips.  Thank you for indulging me



Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

September 7, 2011 - Cajun Brownies

We head out on our roadtrip Saturday: Prague, Budapest, Vienna and maybe Salzburg.  I'm actually looking forward to it, the drive.  Usually that's not really how I want to spend my time but part of the experience is just "seeing" whatever we see while driving.  When we went to Brugge we saw lots of wind farms.  Those we fun.  The other fun part was my Dad trying to get a picture of the wind farms for me as we drove by at 100 kph.  Maybe all we'll see this time is traffic, but I'm still excited.

What does this have to do with cajun brownies?  Well, I'm trying to get us ready for the road trip.  Soda's, hard candy (to keep me awake), snack stuff, sandwich things.  I'm also trying to clear the fridge out of anthing that wont last 10 days while we are gone.  Along those lines I had an egg hanging out, waiting for some useful purpose.  Lo and behold I have a box of brownie mix that calls for 1 egg.  Of course I'm going to make the brownies.  They can qualify as road trip snacks.   Unfortunately, I learned a valuable lesson.  Ok maybe a couple of lessons.
(1) Although I rarely if ever use the oven, never assume that the last thing I used the oven for was for baking brownies.
(2) When your gut says "maybe I should double check what 350 degree's fahrenheit converts to in Celsius", it's probably a good idea to check.

If you are wondering, 350 degrees converts to 176 degrees celsius.... not 220.  220 degrees Celsius is more like 428 degrees fahrenheit.  I have no clue what I could have used the oven for at that temperature but I can absolutely confirm that when you cook brownies at that temperature they come out a wee bit blackened.  Hence Cajun Brownies.  So instead of wasting an egg I wasted a bownie mix.  Which seems so much worse. 

I actually have this delusional hope that if I cut off the edges... really really big edges, and add ice cream to the mix they center might be edible.  Ok, yes, I know the answer to that is unlikely but a girl has got to dream.


**** Brownie Update ****
Well I am happy to report that after cutting off the edges of the brownies they have been saved


Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

September 6, 2011 – Not So Silent Scream

Is it just me or can everyone hear the scream that is reverberating through my head?  It’s not like I am upset or anything.  Far from it, we’re gearing up for our road trip vacation next week and things are looking hunky dory.  (Where did that phrase come from).  Still, I can feel it, that slightly maniacal itchy feeling that starts behind your eyes and slowly creeps out into random disjointed thoughts.  If it gets too quite in the office and for some reason there were another himn being hanging about with a stethoscope stuck to my head they would hear it… the scream.  It starts out slow and quite, maybe like a giggle and quickly ratchets up in volume and ends with a shriek of …. Well I haven’t defined that last part yet.

I think, however, that I can pinpoint the cause.  It’s a cross between being psyched about the road trip and trying to get all of my work ducks in a row before we head out.  Maybe getting ducks in a row isn’t an apt enough analogy, herding cats might be more appropriate.

Oh and how did I spend my weekend when all of this is going on?  Relaxing and reading.



I finished Chris Culver’s “The Abby (a full-length suspense thiller).” Seriously that is the title, and because I read Lynn Galli’s Uncommon Emotions” last week and got totally addicted to her writing and the “Virginia Crew” I had to read the rest of the series:

Wasted Heart

Imagining Reality

Blessed Twice and

Finally  



Yes I know, get a life but it was fun.  I’ll try and write reviews for all of them in the next couple of days.  Next up “The Hunger Games”


Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Monday, September 5, 2011

September 5, 2011 - The Continuing Tax Saga

You might be wondering how I am spending my rainy wet labor day.  You'll never guess, that's right doing my taxes.  Taxes???  How can I be once again doing my 2010 taxes.  It seems its a pox on my life.  Seriously, isn't everyone already well done with this nightmare.  I swear by the time I'm well and free of my 2010 taxes I'll be starting my 2011.  Seriously, can someone shoot me?

What I'm doing isn't even difficult, I'm trying to reconcile what the accountants did to what I did in Turbo Tax.  We needed the accountants to figure out what I owed Switzerland in taxes which gives me something called a foreign tax credit.  Oh don't be mistaken, I still owe the US money because lord knows Congress needs every penny than can get.  I'm pretty sure they are due for a pay increase any moment now.  Yes, I am feeling a little cynical about our government and it's inability to actually stay in a budget.  maybe I should say, create a budget.... oh hell I should stop now before I really start to rant.

Taxes, I really don't mind taxes but they are all mathy (yes I made that word up) and if that wasn't bad enough "they" make it as difficult as possibly to understand what the heck the rules are.  So I have this foreign tax credit form that I wanted to fill in on turbo tax to see if my numbers and the accountants numbers jive.  I'm stuck on line 15 because it wont let me punch in the nunber it wants me to fill in supporting documentation.  I'm not even filing the turbo tax forms I'm filing the accountant forms.  Why and I bothering?  I have no idea, it seemed like a good idea at the time.  Now it seems like a good idea to wait for L to come home and help me.  Stupid tax forms, stupid govenment, annoyingly stupid condescending congress.  I'm sorry the whole trillions of dollars in debt thing bothers me.  If you or I lived that far outside of our budget I'm pretty sure someone would be knocking on our door to take us to debtors prison.  I wonder if we could reinstiture debtors prison for a few congressmen/women 


Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Friday, September 2, 2011

September 2, 2011 - Chocolate Chip Brownies



Really do I need to add any words????  I think I was supposed to spread the chocolate chip dough more evenly across the top but on the bright side, it just means I'll need to practice making these again.




Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

September 2, 2011 - Book Review: Uncommon Emotions by Lynn Galli


Uncommon Emotions by Lynn Galli
Romance
Definitely 5 stars

I came across this book while randomly searching amazon.com for something to read.  It popped up in my recommended items, for which I am extremely grateful.  This is definitely one of the better romance novels I have read in quite some time.  The characters are likeable, well thought out and have a three dimensional feel to them.  I found that it was easy to identify with a number of the emotions that Joslyn has to come to grips with, but it was refreshing to witness the character moving through them without falling apart.  Another major plus in my book is the fact that both women are strong, smart and successful in their own right.

I would highly recommend reading this story!  In the meantime, I’ll be looking for other Lynn Galli stories.

Product Description from the Amazon.com website:

“As a turnaround specialist, Joslyn Simonini spends her days analyzing corporate profit margins and trying to keep her likeness from being turned into a voodoo doll by company employees. If she does her job well, they often lose theirs. So, it comes as a surprise when she finds herself being kissed one day at work. She’s even more shocked to find out that the mysterious kissing bandit is a woman.

Not in the habit of kissing women, Joslyn tries to brush off the unintentional mistake. But before long, she’s forced to examine the rush of emotions that accompanied the kiss, especially when she meets Raven Malvolio. At first, she needs Raven to complete her analysis, but she doesn’t expect to need the friendship that Raven offers. When those friendly feelings escalate to something more, Joslyn’s confusion and underdeveloped emotional range might ruin her chance at a relationship that could surpass even her dreams.

Uncommon Emotions takes a look at how someone can think she’s happy with her life only to be surprised by the passion she’s yet to feel.”


Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

September 1, 2011 - Bullets

  • I can't believe it's September.  What happened to August or July for that matter? 

  • I went running with Meri today.  It was not pretty.  We ran Tuesday and I felt like I was running better.  Today I felt like someone hit me with a cement block.

  • Yesterday I saw a guy/kid riding his moped wearing a pair of shorts and a T-shirt.  That wasn't shocking.  What was shocking was the machine gun strapped to his back.  What's up with that? Seriously, it's a day later and I'm not over it.

  • I just finished reading "Uncommon Emotions" by Lynn Galli.  I'll try and post a review of it later.  Next up: "The Abby" by Chris Culver

  • I'm sensing that there will be brownies in my future.  I've been debating making a batch for too long now.

  • L comes home from London tonight

  • I did not sleep well last night and now I have to get to work.


Copyright © C.A. Bailey 2010 - 2011, All Rights Reserved.