Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Just want to wish all my family and friends a HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Sue is on the mudslides

Rob is finishing up the Celebration Ale

and Carter has a brand new pack of FLASHIN' FRUIT PUNCH juice boxes!

We're about to watch the new 'journey to the center of the earth' and will attempt to stay up til' midnight.

I'll also be tuning in to the Woodside LIVE ... venture over to the Woodside and get an earfull of great tunes... we're usually there live also but this year just hanging out at home.

-Rob, Sue & Carter Bean

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Carter's Holiday Drawings

As most of you know Carter loves to draw and color. His newest thing is to draw a bunch of pages, have sue or I write down what the picture is describing and then staple it into a book.

So, I asked Carter if he could draw a Christmas book. It took Carter about 20 minutes to come up with these. I scanned them into the computer and (with Carter's help) colored in the drawings.

Then we put together this video for your enjoyment.


Saturday, December 20, 2008

Don't Let the Wife Alone

This is what happens when you are busy cooking Shrimp Creole while the wife decides to clean out the closet.

Your son will run up to you and say "Mommy needs help. She is stuck."
Of course, the first thing I did was get the ole' camera.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Let it Snow, Let it Hail, Let it Rain

Today over here on the east coast we saw some snow. Around 10am the snow started coming down (in Clinton, NJ) and by 1:00pm it was coming down pretty good. I closed the shop early today and headed home. My journey home usually takes about 45 minutes but today it was about an hour and 15. This wasn't too bad since the roads were covered with about 4 inches by the time I started heading home. I only saw one accident and that was an SUV that had spun around on a section of road (in PA) known as 'cemetary curve'.

When I got home I had a big bowl of spaghetti and meatballs (leftovers from last night). This was around 2:30. Since I rushing around at work to get what I could get done (the holidays are always busy in a printshop) I didn't get a chance to eat lunch til' I got home.

Carter and I went out after lunch and I shoveled while Carter rolled around in the snow. Between shovels of heavy slush I rolled a couple of snowballs and helped Carter make a snowman.

After I was done I went into the garage to look for some sort of sled. And then realized that we probably didn't even own a sled. So, I got this crazy idea to have Carter sit on the shovel and I'd pull him around the yard.

We did this for about 10 minutes til' I was exhaused and after I pulled a muscle in my leg (it's ok now). It really sucks to get old. Maybe I should get out and walk more (that's another story for another day).

Enjoy the video and HAPPY HOLIDAYS to all!

-Rob, Sue and Carter

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Tale of the Tree

In the past we used to go out the day after Thanksgiving and buy a 'real' Christmas Tree. But once our son was born my wife thought that we should maybe look into getting a 'fake' tree. Many years ago the 'fake' trees did, indeed, look fake. But in recent years the artificial trees have started looking better and better. Of course the price for a 'real looking' artificial tree can run you anywhere from $120.00 - $300.00 (or more).

When we first moved into our home in Lower Nazareth Township we went out and bought a nice big artificial tree. It wasn't top of the line but it looked pretty good. The only problem was that the tree was at least 8' tall and touched the ceiling. So, the following year we went out and bought a smaller tree. This was a Martha Stewart model and was about 7.5' tall. We really liked this tree and continued to put this up in 2005, 2006 & 2007.

This year my boss was saying how he wanted to put a tree outside the print shop and put lights on it - make the shop look a little festive and possibly attract customers to the shop by simply driving by and noticing the tree.

Well, I told him that we had two artificial trees and I would give him the bigger tree which we no longer used. The only stipulation was that he had to keep this tree; as I did not want it back in the house (we're trying to simplify - trying).

Each year I would put our tree up in the attic. This was a big struggle getting it up the ladder and then propelled into the attic for next year.

Before giving the tree to my boss I made sure that the boxed tree in our garage was not the tree we used for the past 3 years. Sue came down to the garage the night I was to put the tree in the van and was positive this was in fact the old bigger tree.

You can probably see where this is going.

Well, last Saturday Sue and Carter started getting out the Holiday storage containers from under the stairs as I got the ladder from the garage so I could go up to the attic. I unfolded the ladder, climbed up, removed the ceiling panel and looked around.... and looked around... and looked around. Guess what? No tree.

We had to laugh a little since we soon realized that the tree that was in garage was the tree we had bought to replace the larger one. And after some thought I remembered putting the tree in the garage since I was tired of struggling to shimmy the tree up the ladder each year and into the attic (man, that sucker was heavy).

So, out into the night we went. And it just so happened it was snowing. We went to Sears first and Sue spotted a $150.00 tree she liked. Being the bargain hunter I am - I suggested we go to a couple more places and see what they have. So, we went to Home Depot - two trees and nothing less than $200.00. Walmart - 4 trees - one for $70.00 that looked like an artificial tree and 3 others that also looked fake and for a higher price. Lowes - 3 trees and nothing under $200.00.

So, it was back to Sears. We bought the $150.00 tree (which is also pre-lit) and are very happy with it. Our other tree was pretty wide and our living room has limited space so a thinner tree works great.

Later that night I took a walk with my son and our dog while it snowed. It turned out to be a nice night and it's always great seeing the lights on the house for the first time (of the season). And it's even better to go walking during the first snowfall.

The big question we are still asking ourselves is: What did we do with the other (bigger) tree? Neither of us remember giving it away and it's too big to be hidden somewhere. The only place it could be is in the shed and I don't recall coming across it.

Hope everyone has a great Holiday!

Don't eat too many cookies. Drink all the beer you want.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


The Phils did something they haven't done since 1980. WIN THE WORLD SERIES!!!

Here are some photos from the joyous event.

First photo is the last pitch of the game!

Second photo is the 'pile on'...

And of course that is me acting goofy along side the action!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Why I'm Voting for Obama

Here is why I'm voting for Obama:

1)He's a good speaker.

2)He wears a nice suit.

3)He's young enough to fulfill not only 1 term, but maybe 2.

4)He kind of reminds me of Will Smith.

5)He makes ladies faint.

6)He's going to change some things.

7)He can dance (did you see Ellen?)

8)He smokes cigarettes (and that is cool).

9)He's not McCain.

There ya go... this is why all of are voting for Barack Obama!

Monday, October 27, 2008

One To Go!

Yes, it's true. The Phillies are now one game away from doing what they haven't done in 28 years! In 1980 I was 15 years old and a true Phillies fan. Most of you know I collect autographs but did you know that my first autograph signing was at the age of 12 and it was the catcher for the Phillies, Bob Boone?

I was too young to have celebrated in the proper way and now in 2008 I'm not too old but without enough friends and family who are fans to celebrate in the proper way but I will be proud of my team just the same. Maybe I will get crazy and come in late tomorrow.

Just too sad to think that the ole' tugger is no longer around to see it happen again.. but in game 3 he was there as his son sprinkled some of his ashes on the pitcher's mound. And 80 backwards is 08.. it's got to be our time!

Let's get this done PHILLIES!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

PHILLIES do it in 5!

Well the Phillies are headed to the world series. Dodgers fans can cry in their coffee (or beer) this morning and by the looks of the crowd last night they might have been crying in the ballpark.

I do have to agree that if it's the Phillies and the Rays the viewing audience will not be as big as if it's the Red Sox and Phillies... I would rather have the Red Sox and Phillies in the World Series since we may really see the Fightin' Phils come to life.. and wouldn't it just be sweet to say "We beat the Red Sox in the World Series".. who doesn't want to say that (except a Red Sox fan; sorry Stephen King - I love your books but don't like your baseball team).

I went out the other day and got my UTLEY shirt. My lovely wife washed it for me last night so I could wear today. You've got to show your colors, man!

Stay Tuned.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Phillies win game 4 - one more to go and we're in THE WORLD SERIES!!!!

And was that Penny Marshall looking like the blob at game 4? Rumor has it that some kid walked by her and disappeared... creepy...

But the quote of the day OR game was by Matt Stairs: want to get that one big hit where you feel like you're part of the team. Not that I don't feel like I'm part of the team, by no means, but when you get that nice celebration coming into the dugout and you're getting you're ass hammered by guys, it's no better feeling than to have that done."

I think they should get a grip on the 'ass hammering'... I didn't even know that was part of the game.

Friday, October 10, 2008


I can't say that I am a 'diehard' baseball fan. I consider 'diehard' to be someone who has to watch every inning of every game. I have a life here. I get excited when the season starts and then towards the middle of summer I somewhat lose interest (but still know if the Phillies won or not). But the playoffs and the World Series are the most exciting part of baseball for me. And it's epecially exciting to see the Phillies in the playoffs.

As of right now the Phillies are kicking the Dodgers arses in Game 2. In game 1 all I can say is Derek Lowe looked like Richard Nixon in the Kennedy/Nixon debates of 1960. I even thought for a minute they were playing in LA since he was sweating so much his face looked irritated and red. But that's how the Phillies need to leave the Dodgers! Since Manny Ramirez is most of the team (since I only ever hear his name mentioned and Joe Torre) I guess we really need to keep striking Manny out. Also, I didn't even know the Dodgers still had a team until I heard they were playing the Phillies. GO PHILLIES! This is your year!!!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Daddy O up in the Hizzou

After work last night I picked up my Dad for his first sleepover at our house. A couple of weeks ago we 'finally' had the new carpet installed downstairs. After years of having two beds in our room (since carter would not sleep in his own room) we moved the bed back down to the former 'guest-room'.

My father lives alone and has been doing pretty good since my mother passed away in August. He goes to the bingo twice a week (by himself) and seems to keep busy with his housework. He turned 83 years old in August so he's slowed down a bit over the last 5 years. But he's in good health and always in a good mood.

We stopped at our favorite Italian Eatery (Pinos II); don't know where there is a Pino's I but sure it exists somewhere around here. We came back to the house, ate and later on watched 'MAD MONEY'. Sue picked this one out and turned out to be a pretty good movie. The movie stars diane keaton, queen latifah, and katie holmes. 3woman get jobs at the federal reserve. One is a janitor, one transports the 'old' money, and the other shreds the money. Since no one checks the trashbins (after the shredding) they get the crazy idea to not shred the money and dispose of it in the trash bins. Diane Keaton's character empties the trash bins and then they end up transporting the money out the door each day.

Ted Danson is also in the movie (as Diane Keaton's husband) and is looking as old as ever. The ending is a bit hokey but alot of comical relief. Katie Holmes plays a ditsy girl who listens to dance music and bobs her head alot... she looks kind of frumpy in most of the scenes and a bit weather beaten (or maybe it's just the stress of being Ms. Tom Cruise).

The other night I was watching FAMILY GUY and one sketch was where the power went out. They showed the gate of the Crusies home and then Tom and Katie sitting on a couch. Katie is wearing an ankle bracelet and when the power goes off the bracelet falls off and I think she jumps through the window and escapes.... I nearly fell off of the couch laughing so hard...

Carter and I drove my father back home this morning. I may actually go to the bingo with my dad in the near future. A couple of weeks ago he won $75.00 one night and then $35.00 a couple of nights later... not too bad and probably more than I'd win in Atlantic City.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

End of Summer Recap

Here's a recap of some of the things Carter did this summer!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Are you ready for some Football?

Today is the start of the season for the PHILADELPHIA EAGLES!

What could be a better way to get into the game than with some Picante Salsa, Tortilla Chips and an ice cold Rolling Rock ...

At the start of the fourth quarter the score is Eagles - 31 vs. Rams - big 0. McNabb is in top form with 350 yards in the first 3 quarters.

I'm just glad I do not have Tom Brady in my fantasy league (I think he got injured in the 1st quarter). Last year I had Tom Brady and he helped me into the last week of playoffs (in which I sadly lost). This year I decided to go with McNabb (at that point everyone else was taken). I know it's only the first game of the season but McNabb already looks better than last year.

Good luck Hoochies! Carson Palmer has done you wrong.

Next game we will see the Eagles kick the Cowboys arses (monday night game)

Friday, September 5, 2008

Electric Woodside Boogaloo 2

Got back Thursday night after almost a week at TIMMAY's WOODSIDE. Tim was gracious enough to be host the Monkey.

It was a nice relaxing vacation that I surely needed after the passing of my mother (on August 14th). I had planned on going down to NC earlier but postponed til' the last day of August.

Tim and I didn't do too much of anything but drink, eat and watch movies; which was ok with me since I took off the week just to relax.

The second day there we went and saw DARK KNIGHT. I highly recommend seeing this (if you haven't already)! You will leave the theatre thinking you've been on some crazy ride. One of the best movies I've seen in a long time but a little too long. I thought it should have been about a 1/2 an hour shorter. It was one of those movies where you keep thinking it's going to end (as you keep putting off going to the bathroom). Heath Ledger was incredible as the JOKER and sad that he's not around to reprise his role. The stunts were some of the best I've seen. This movie was simply incredible. There aren't many movies I'd go see a second time but this one I'd see 5 times (well, maybe 3)..

A couple of days later we saw TROPIC THUNDER. This one wasn't as good as DARK KNIGHT but also a different genre; different type of movie. I wasn't at all offended by the mention (and visualization) of 'mentally disabled' people. Maybe that's because I consider myself mentally diasabled and feel any publicity is good publicity.

We also ate out a couple of times. We went to a joint called STICKY FINGERS where you can get about 10 different bar-b-que sauces to top off your ribs, pulled pork or chicken. Also went to a place in Charlotte (can't remember the name) but had a pretty good burger. The fries sucked. The other eatery we went to is one I was told not to disclose to anyone. Tim even made me sign a paper stating I was not even to mention it. But I have to say the 'salsa' was most excellent!

The other thing we did was watch alot of TV.. which is always fine with me. Here are some of things we watched: THE RUTGERS/FRESNO STATE game, some episodes of MAD MEN, WEEDS, CALIFORNICATION, movies: CATCH AND RELEASE, 4 WEDDINGS and A FUNERAL, SMART PEOPLE, AIRPLANE!, SOME CAME RUNNING, HIGH ANXIETY, LOST AND FOUND, MARRIAGE ON THE ROCKS, OFFICE SPACE (I can watch this anytime)...

S0, after not having flown since my Honeymoon (in 1996) this was my second flight since April (when I went to Orlando). Flying for me is torture and the flight back on an airbus (2 long rows (2 seats on each side of the aisle) was the worst... simply because I could feel every time the plane slowed down, sped up and turned. It lived up to it's name in that I felt like I was flying through the air on a school bus.

Thank you Tim! Thanks for being a great host and a great friend!

PS: The photo at the top was a dance off Tim and I witnessed in downtown Charlotte. It got pretty dancey.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

A long strange week it's been

Feeling much better this weekend after the water heater problem. On monday the 'restoration guys' came back and took away the gigantic fans and humidifiers that were running non-stop since Friday. Our downstairs was deemed 'dry'; carpet, walls, toilet seat.

Thursday the claims adjuster arrived and after surveying the damage he went to his truck and went over everything (for an hour). When he came back in he handed Sue a big ole' check. This covered most of the money we had spent to have a new hot water heater (and pressure regulator) installed.

This check did not include the carpet. The carpet guy came out on Friday to measure. Allstate also provided the installer and they are footing the bill for the new carpet. We may even take a section of carpet that was not effected by the water and have it installed in the office upstairs. The carpet around the pool table is enough area for the office floor. All we would have to pay for is the padding and the installation.

Other news is that Carter is finally sleeping in his own room; and BY HIMSELF! The first 4 or 5 nights (last week) Sue slept on the floor. But now he's fast asleep after a story each night. He's also sleeping better since he's been in his own room. Early this morning (6am) I did have to untangle him from the covers but he went back to sleep after that.

We have two beds in our room and hopefully soon (after the carpet is installed) we can move the one bed (a full-size) to the downstairs 'guest room'. Kind of sucks we had the flood in that room since we probably would have done that this weekend. The guest room kind of became a room for 'stuff' once we removed the bed.

Today is very hot! The temperature on the grill says 120 degrees. It's really about 95/96. My neighbor is out mowing his lawn in slacks (and t-shirt). I'm beginning to think he has a skin problem or doesn't like grass on his legs OR nobody ever told him about 'SHORTS'! I like to call him Mr.Longpants. Shhhh.. don't tell him...

He's only one of two people in the neighborhood who still own push-mowers. All of us in the neighborhood have at least a 1/2 acre or more. I guess a push mower is a good thing for the environment; as I cruise my lawn on my k-gro 6000 spewing fumes (just kidding). I can tell you that my riding mower uses just a little more gas than my push mower. What can I say... "Once you ride you'll never push again" (and that is not a quote from Sheryl Crow).

I do help out with the environment in that I'm very active each day in turning out the lights my wife and son leave on, I recycle, I have a compost, I ride in my van without the air on (of course I am naked), I brush my teeth with rain water, I recycle my old toe nails into food containers, and I never use toilet paper... ISN'T THAT ENOUGH! GET OFF MY BACK!!

Oh, sorry..

One last thing: The garden is in full growing mode. The photo at the top is a cucumber I pulled today - this is what we grow in Pennsylvania. The tomatoes will most likely be ripe in a week. I've been planting my own tomato plants since 1994 (when Sue and I lived in 'the bungalow' in Harmony) and like every year a massive number of tomatoes get ripe at the same time. So, in a week or so figure I'll have 40 tomatoes. I will bring some to the woodside. I do know Matt (Splatt) does not like tomatoes. Not sure if Timmay does. Even when you've known people a long time it's hard to keep track of these things. Plus, it doesn't help I have a bad memory.

Also it's hard to believe I've known Matt for 30 years and Timmay for 27 years (give or take a year). As I often say (whispering to myself or sometimes screaming into the night from the backyard), 'Time is a Bastard!'

So today I will actually be outside reading a book and enjoying the sun.. until I can't take anymore. It sometimes doesn't feel right to sit in an air-conditioned house during the summer weekends. Seems like a waste of summer.

I watched the VH1 Honors THE WHO the other night and I have to say that the WHO can still kick rock n' roll's *ss - hard to believe Roger Daltry is 64 years old! I got an email from pat dinizio today and he told me to remind him next time we saw each other to ask about the time he met with John Entwistle...

The Foo Fighters are becoming one of my new/old favorite bands. I always liked them (having liked Nirvana) but now I've seen them twice perform live (on tv) and each time they've blown me away with their performances. Just an intense and talented band of rockers! They certainly honored the WHO the other night... Incubus's performance (right after) sounded like 'the backstreet boys' compared to the Foo Fighters intense energy-infused music. Makes you want to slam your head into something... ok, I'm 42.. I can dream..

Until next time I will leave you with a quote from the great Colonel Sanders

"I'm too drunk to taste this chicken"

Saturday, July 12, 2008

An Inconvenient Appliance

What I thought was going to be a normal Friday night turned into more than we bargained for. I followed my normal routine after leaving work; go to the bank, go to the liqour store, pick up food.. and come home and relax after a long week.

The normal routine did happen but the relaxing didn't. I walked in the door and Sue is there to meet me. She looks at me and says, "We have a big problem". I say, "What". She tells me that the 'dreaded' water heater has busted.

We live in a bi-level home so my only thought was that I would find things floating around when I walked down to the first level. At first things didn't appear as bad as I thought until I started walking around. It appears that soon after Sue left for work the water heater started leaking or just let loose of all it's fluids. The water continued it's journey into the laundry room/bathroom (which has a tiled floor), a closet next to the water heater, a bedroom, and into the living area. The hardest hit was the bedroom in which the carpet was completly soaked.

It's hard for me to get real angry since sometimes things like this happen and there really isn't anything you can do but get them fixed. So, we figured all we could do was try to soak up some of the water standing on the laundry floor and remove things which were sitting in water.

So I got on the phone with my insurance company. I got a claim number and was told someone would call in an hour to instruct me what would be done next. I got a call from a gentlemen who said he was in the area and would come over in 30 minutes. This was a company that removes water (from carpet, walls, etc.). So, we continued to remove things that were wet and mop up the water in the laundry room and bathroom.

45 minutes later two men showed up with equipment. After evaluating the situation they told us that the carpet was seperating (where the water had sat) and it would need to be replaced. Yes, the entire 1st level of carpet needs to be replaced. If you recall we had new carpet installed in December (upstairs and down). But again, what could we do? All is (supposedly) covered by my insurance company and the claims inspector will be out on Thursday to evaluate the situation.

The 'water removal' guys got most of the water out of the carpet but the downstairs is a mess and very upsetting to me at this point. I can't understand why they can't make a better water heater or a different type of system.. maybe they do.. I don't know but I've heard of this happening alot to homeowners. A woman who worked with me years ago had just moved into a house in Virginia when the same thing happened. They were probably in the house less than a week and weren't even fully unpacked.

I have to say that nothing of value really got damaged. I have many autographed items and luckily I didn't have anything up against a wall (like I did a couple of weeks ago). Most of my signed items are either on the wall or in a plastic storage container. This container was actually in the closet that got soaked but the container protected them. A couple boxes of china got soaked.. and of course a couple of record albums (it always finds the albums). The only autograph it got was a signed Antonio Banderas photo, which was under a dresser in the bedroom (where it should rightfully be).

They had to spray downstairs (so we don't get mildew or mold) and the animals had to stay upstairs all night. The cat was moved into Carter's bedroom. Between listening to the cat scratch at the bedroom door (don't worry, he's declawed) all night and my mind whirling with the events of the night (the water guys didn't leave til' midnight) I must have gotten 3 hours of sleep. Plus, at some point in the night (I think 3am) one of Carter's toys (a fishing game) turned on. I kept hearing this clicking noise and music. I went into the room and found where it was coming from and turned it off. The strange thing is that the game was up on a top shelf of the closet and somewhere where Miles (the cat) could not get to. Just the irony of the night I guess.

Today I got up at 7:45am and I'm now waiting for the water heater guy to get here to install a new water heater.

I guess I'll feel much better when all the humidifiers are gone and the new water heater is in and working... at least we can move some stuff back to where it was until the new carpet is installed. I'll also feel better when it's confirmed that the insurance will cover all of it (maybe not the water heater itself).

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Carter's Summer Fun

So it's summertime and what better way to kick things off than throwing a birthday bash! Here are some photos from this glorious event that took place on June 15; not only were we celebrating Carter's birthday, but Dad Nowak's birthday, and Father's Day. We also took in a baseball game that day.

... and here are some other summertime events:

Hanging out with the Smithereens (June 7th)
93 degrees in the shade that day.

An IRONPIGS baseball game.. although Carter preferred the 'bouncy house' over the game; not much going on in a 1-1 game (June 28th).

He also likes the occasional ride down the (middle) of our road.

And when he's not on the swing or monkey bars he's climbing trees (with full parental supervision; of course).

Thursday, July 3, 2008

SUMMER MIX revealed

So here is the losing summer mix for 2008! I didn't think it was so bad; but that's just me. There are a couple of songs I found (for the first time) before I put them into the mix. No theme, just songs that make me think of summer. I did throw in about 3 sound bites - it was probably the Paul Lynde soundbite that did me in.

Do You Remember Rock N’ Roll Radio – THE RAMONES
Under My Wheels – ALICE COOPER
Rebel Rouser – THE VENTURES
I’ve Been Everywhere – JOHNNY CASH
Feel So Good – DICK DALE
Better Together – JACK JOHNSON
Ice Cream Man – TOM WAITS
Summer Lady – SANTANA
Summer Girls – BLUE RODEO

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

My vacation with the house

That's right folks.. another Fourth of July week.. a week I've been taking off since, well.. every year for the last 10 years. I only took off 3 days this time since I had to space out my last remaining vacation days.

Today I began what I'm sure will be a bi-yearly ritual.. and no, it's not mowing the lawn in the nude. I do that all the time (just kidding)...

Have you guessed? Well, we since we had the deck built in October and the we get full tilt sun beaming down most of the day.... HEY FOLKS.. it's time to Stain the Deck! Ohhh sure, we could have hired someone to do this for us (at $1,000) but I felt I needed a tan... and who doesn't love the smell of stain in the summer? Or the feeling you get after painting a few hundred rail posts? Anyone? Anyone?

But in the end it will all be worth it.. and it's looking better already.. I'll be back out there tomorrow (weather permitting; it's supposed to rain in the evening) enjoying a nice cold ice-tea, the sun on my backside, and the tight grip from a clear vinyl glove on the wood handle of a paint brush as I dip it in the glorious stain.. that beautiful glorious stain!

Go with the clear stain.
The left is BEFORE and the RIGHT is after.

Friday, June 27, 2008

The Weekend

Well folks, it's the weekend. I plan on doing a lot of nothing ... just sitting on the deck sipping some Sam Adams Summer Ale and finishing up my Hemingway book... ohhh, and practicing my Elvis act. The gig at the nursing home doesn't pay that much (actually nothing) but the ole' blue hairs love it when I gyrate real fast.

Tomorrow we will take in our second baseball game of the season at the new IRONPIGS stadium in Allentown. Last game I went to was on Father's Day with my father-in-law and friend of the family, Dave. This will be Carter's first game... let's hope he can sit through it... at least it's only 10 minutes from home.

Hope everyone has a great weekend... and I will soon have photos of the garden and possibly a new video of Carter.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

George Carlin Rest In Peace

A comedian that I had always wanted to see live but never got the chance (tickets would literally sell out the day they went on sale for Easton, PA). He was rough around the edges but a great mind and a great comedian!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Stay away from the LAND SHARK

I was at a Memorial Day Concert and saw that someone had brought with them a 12 pack of Land Shark... never heard of the stuff.. and didn't get to have any until today when I decided to give it a try.

I do like some of the higher-priced Anheiser Busch brands (BASS, Stella Artois) but they also have some losers in their lineup... and you can add Land Shark to them..
I kind of consider myself a beer snob but if given the choice of this and a rolling rock, well, I'd take the rolling rock and use this to wash my feet... yes, it's that bad... I like my beers without a bad after-taste.. when I was much younger I didn't care if it was Coors, Michelob, or Bud... but as an adult I go for taste over not passing out on the floor or waking up in a bath-tub.

It's obviously a really bad imitation of Corona... and makes you want to go out and buy some Coronas... Just like the time someone talked me into eating a vege-burger... why would you eat something that leaves a bad-taste in your mouth and makes you want a real burger (or it's just me) ... so, why would you want to drink something that looks like a Corona but takes like a Miller-lite?

I always bring in the summer with some Coronas..

Someone posted on '': that land-shark will take away sales of Corona ... it's just not possible once word gets out how horrible this beer is! They even have the nerve to charge as much as Corona! ($7.99 a six-pack).. when they should be charging what they charge for rolling rock.. this is not Becks or Bass we're talking about... it's a glorified budweiser..

So, I wash my feet with you!!!

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Carter's New Room

We now begin the project of getting our son to sleep in his own room. Yes, he will turn 5 soon and still sleeps in our room. So, it's new paint and a new bed! We are going with a rocket ship/space theme. And hopefully that will get him in there soon.

He did fine when he was younger but around the time he was 2 years old he got scared of a thunder storm. That week was HELL. We slept about 2 hours a night since he was up screaming for either me or Sue. Then we would go into his room and one of us would sleep on the floor with him... so, the most sensible thing for us to do was to have him sleep with us. Most books and Dr. Phil probably tell you DO NOT LET YOUR CHILD SLEEP IN THE SAME ROOM AS YOU (or eat cookies) but they, of course, have 'people' who take care of their children. If they don't sleep one night they have the nanny take care of the child while they go on vacation to the south of france. Or they have someone who looks like them sleep in their room so they think their parent(s) are there to keep them safe.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Watch Out Summer!

Some people do rain dances to conjure up a rain storm.. some people have their lucky trinkets with them when competing for a game show.... I START DIGGIN' when I want summer to get here! Or I sometimes have a Corona (with a slice of lime)

That's right... it's time to get the garden going! Today I went out to Home Depot and picked up 6 tomato plants, 6 green pepper plants, and 3 cucumber plants. Last year was a bad year for growing or at least in this part of PA. I had a rabbit problem with the pepper plants and I'm still looking for a solution (anyone?) to keep the rabbits out of the garden; besides building a 4 foot fence (which I have thought of). I had 4 plants and the rabbits literally ate the plants right after they started to flower.

I did grow cucumbers once (when we lived in Washington, NJ) with little success. I got about 4 good cucs... that's why you see the trellis in the photo... it's for the cucs! Wish me luck this year! I'm usually pretty good with tomatoes. The year before last was a great growing year. I had about 70 - 80 tomatoes off of 6 plants... and considering all the plants cost a 1.99 it would have been about $80.00-$100.00 at the store to buy that many (not that I needed that many; I do give some away).

If you are wondering about the rocks in the photo I just placed them there for now ... and will probably keep them there since Carter has been catching crickets; they live under the rocks.

Tune in next time to see how the garden grows..

Friday, May 9, 2008

Old Brown Dog

Tonight I am trying something new: Smuttynose Brewing Companies 'Old Brown Dog Ale'

And 'no', it doesn't taste like an old brown dog .. not, like I would know what an old brown dog would taste like.. it actually tastes pretty good and at 8.99 a six-pack it's a fine outstanding beer - By the way, I use BUD to clean the bird-poop off of the deck.. works pretty well...

Winner of a Silver Medal at the 1989 Great American Beer Festival.
AWARDED BEST BROWN ALE IN THE NORTHEAST - 8th Annual US Beer Tasting Championship
Old Brown Dog has been cited as a classic example of the "American Brown Ale" style of beer. Compared to a typical English Brown Ale, Old Brown Dog is fuller-bodied and more strongly hopped.Old Brown Dog has been around for many years. It was first brewed in 1988 at the Northampton Brewery. In 1989 it won a silver medal in its category (American Brown Ale) at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver.
VITAL STATISTICSOG: 1060, TG: 1016 Grain Bill: Pale Brewers, Munich, Crystal 60°L, ChocolateHops: Cascade, WillametteIBU's: 15, ABV: 5.7%Color/Number: Deep brown-amber, 25°
What's on my jukebox (or should I say XM):
Fleetwood Mac - Don't Stop
Kansas - Dust in the Wind
Ricky Nelson - Garden Party
Little River Band - Happy Aniversary
Grand Funk Railroad - We're an American Band
Carol King - It's Too Late
Nitty Gritty Dirt Band - An American Dream ('might be the answer to this hillbilly beer')

Saturday, May 3, 2008

The end of our vacation

On Thursday we went to Hollywood Studios (used to be called MGM). Carter got to meet some of his heros - the Power Rangers! After days of only being given the choice of Hamburgers, Hotdogs and Dry Chicken Sandwiches there was finally a Pizza place! Sue can't eat Pizza (namely the sauce) so while we went on the 'movie ride' Sue went off to find something to eat. Carter really enjoyed the movie ride. You are in a car and go past these elaborate sets made to look like the actual movie sets with animatronic actors; John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, the munchkins, etc. One of the sets was set up like a town in the 1930s and once the car stopped a gangster jumped out (a real person), there was a gun fight and he took over driving our car. That was until he got greedy and tried to steal the jewel (from Raiders of the lost ark) and was turned into a skeleton.

Some of the rides remained the same from when Sue and I went in the early 90s; Tower of Terror and Star Wars (flight simulator). Carter seemed a little scared when we went on the Star Wars ride but he was totally into the characters and the light-saber battles outside. He even got to meet Darth Maul but ran away when he showed him his nasty 'green' teeth! He is still talking about it and saying he's Darth Maul (then showing me his teeth). I told him that your teeth can turn green if you don't brush your teeth every day.

Friday we spent most of the day at the pool. Sue's mom and dad checked out at 10am and headed to their next destination (Treasure Island). They are retired so they'll be in Florida for the next 2 or 3 weeks. We hung out at the Hilton Grand Resort.. plenty to do.. about 4 pools, music, games, a bar and tables where you can eat. Carter got to paint a snake and played on the playground until he fell and hit his chin on the ground. It wasn't a good day for Carter. While I was leading him to the bathrooms he hit his head on one of the walls (don't even know how this is possible), then his chin, then at the airport he had a nosebleed right before we were to be checked over, and to top things off he fell off his chair (while sitting at a table) and hit his nose on the table before falling to the ground with the chair behind him.

So we are back home in Bethlehem. Got back around 10pm last night. It's funny when you return home after just a week.. things look different for some odd reason. The cat was especially glad to see us. As I got to the front door he was scratching at the door (having heard us arrive). He was epecially needy all night but then bit Sue as she came up the stairs. Cats get weird when you're gone for awhile or maybe he was just hungry.

Here are some more photos:

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Universal and Epcot


On Tuesday Sue and I went to Universal Studios by ourselves. Some of the rides have changed since we were last there (it has been 14 years) but I was amazed that the Lucy exhibit was still there. We got to see some of Lucy's dresses, some old Lucy scripts and her Emmys; just to name a couple of things.

We caught the Blues Brothers show (performed outside their brownstone), the Horror Makeup Show, Men In Black ride (I won), The Mummy Ride (a rollercoaster; Sue thinks her back is now fixed), The Simpsons Ride (replaced Back to the Future) which is a flight simulation; towards the end of bouncing and flying through the air after your roller coaster car lets loose a Giant Maggie puts you in her mouth and spits you out. The park closed at 7:00pm so we didn't get to see FEAR FACTOR and the live taping was for some wrestling show.

Here are some photos:

On Wednesday Sue, Carter, Grandpop, Grandma and I went to Epcot. The first ride we went on was pretty cool. You go through the history of technology. There are some games you can interact with before getting on the ride (almost like playing a wii; without the remote). As the ride starts moving your pictures are taken. There is a computer screen in which you plug in some information (what you like to do, where you are from, etc.) and then before the ride ends it places your faces into the video. Although I am a little worried since this was supposed to be our future and I was no where to be found (Sue told me I better buckle up!).

Carter especially liked the Character Depot where he got to meet Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Chip and Dale, and Goofy (after about an hour wait). In the old days you would wander the park and get to meet the characters; now you have to wait in lines and sometimes just to see one character. Kind of funny when you see kids with autograph books waiting in line to have goofy give you his autograph. You have to train them young to be autograph seekers! At least these characters weren't charging.

We spent some time in England where we saw a bad Beatles band. Ok, they were ok.. but just putting on a wig and outfits doesn't make you the Beatles (although anyone could be Ringo); the Fab Faux are much better. Sue bought some AERO bars and Carter got a set of Peter Pan figures. We ended the night in Mexico and watching some of the 'illuminations' .. fire, fireworks and lights.. before heading to the parking lot.

Here are some photos:

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Animal Kingdom

On Monday we ventured off to Disney's Animal Kingdom. My expectations were high and after leaving I was a little disappointed. Sue was told that most of the animals are hard to find (they hide) and this was the case at 1/2 the exhibits.

If you have small children (under 5) you might want to re-consider BUGS 3-D. This looks all cutesy and cuddly from the outside but once you get in you are bombarded with acorns, a stink-bug lets one loose, bees are up close and personal, huge animatronic bugs, and spiders drop from the ceiling. Right before you leave all the slugs and snails (and such) need to leave first so you feel things underneath your seat moving.. pretty gross.. Carter was a little scared of the spiders and the acorns flying past our heads.

Some of the fun stuff was Carter meeting Goofy and Pluto (pluto's tag said "if lost, please return me to Mickey Mouse) and Meeko the raccoon. We also saw some monkeys, various birds, an anteater, a hippo, and a pair of Gorillas. We were watching the Gorillas; thinking they were going to fight. We soon found out that one of them was male and the other was female as the parents frantically rolled away the strollers and shielded their children's eyes from nature.

We didn't have a chance to go on the safari since the park closed at 6pm. That is one thing that we're not too happy with but I guess we are here off-season. The first day at Disney we were very sad to here that the park closed at 7pm (on a Saturday!) but this was because of 'grad night'.

Here are some photos

The future Chad Smith (or Ricky Ricardo)
This monkey has a child clinging to it
The Gorillas (before showing us some tricks)
Carter meets Goofy and Pluto

Monday, April 28, 2008


Saturday we went to Disneyworld. The last time I was at Disneyworld was around 1994 when Sue and I went. We remember doing disney in one day since most of the rides are geared towards the little ones. This time we spent 7 hours on Saturday and 8 hours on Sunday. Sunday we stayed for the parade (see photos below) and the fireworks. The park closed at 11pm. If you stay at one of the resorts you can come in at 11pm and stay til 2am!

Carter's favorites: Meeting buzz lightyear (he gave him a high-five), meeting winnie the pooh and tigger (too). Carter's favorite rides were: Pirates of the Caribbean .. he can't stop talking about seeing 'jack sparrow' (What is funny is that they put this wax figure of Johnny Depp (as Jack Sparrow) in various places through 'pirates' (the ride still looks the same except with Jack showing up here and there... and also an apparition of davey jones (not the guy from the monkees) greets you when the ride starts), Buzz Lightyears Galactic Adventure (Grand-ma won!), it's a small world (I have a fear of the ride breaking down and all the little people coming to life) and the Country Bears (they dust them off once in awhile).
The fireworks were unlike anything we've seen before. I imagine disney creates their own types of fireworks.. and the grand finale was tinker-bell (or someone a little bigger than her) flying down a wire from the top of the castle and across to a nearby building.

We had to fight the evil Zorg to get our son back

Everyone Loves A Parade

These are real "little" people - don't be fooled!

Super Carter and his Dad
Drinks were priced reasonably. Water was $1.80.. Powerage (blue) was $2.00 ... that's about all I've been drinking is the energy-drinks. It's hard to find something healthy to eat at disney but they were selling bananas, apples and oranges at some of their stands. You can only eat so many fried foods before the muscles in your legs cease up on you.

The little mermaid was my favorite. She's a redhead, you know and she's been my favorite disney character for a long time. I was very excited to see her in person!

Next up: Animal Kingdom