We didn't bring a whole lot of food items with us when we moved. Now our refrigerator is relatively sparse. Our pantry is much smaller than the one we had before, so it looks full. There are so many things that I am used to having in the house that I am missing now. When I made muffins last weekend I had to run to the store to get brown sugar. When we made burgers last week I discovered we don't have ketchup. I'm going to make chili tonight and realized we don't have any Guinness! I'm sure slowly but surely things will start to fill in, I'm just used to having all that stuff already.
Yesterday we ignored the weather forecast and headed to D.C. We really wanted to get out and I figured we'd be indoors most of the time, so the rain wouldn't bother us. It was raining when we left the house, lightened up to a drizzle when we got to the metro station, and was really just a mist by the time we got off at the Smithsonian stop.
We headed over to the National Museum of Natural History just as it opened. We wandered through the oceans exhibit first--not exactly the best course of action--since that isn't what we had gone to see. By the time we got around to seeing what we wanted to see, of course the place was crowded. Anyway, in the ocean exhibit we saw the giant squid and learned about the whale's ancestors (from a very enthusiastic docent). Oh, and we saw a lot of gross looking fish.
From the oceans we headed to see the dinosaurs--which is what Ross really wanted to see. The skeletons are really impressive. Ross's favorite is the Stegasaurus. I liked the Apatosaurus--it was so long! My favorite fossil though, was the fossil in the belly of the fossil.
The gems and minerals came next. Wow. They have some bling there on display at the Smithsonian. We got a bit worn out in the middle of the mineral displays. I guess 2 hours walking around a museum will do that to you. I sat down for a bit and had a nice view of the Capitol building.
Since we were running out of energy we had to decide what we really wanted to see. I decided we would go through the temporary orchid exhibit before heading to lunch. The exhibit had lots of colorful flowers, and I even got to see a vanilla plant. After lunch we walked through some of the sculpture gardens. Ross saw a metal sphere sculpture just like the ones at the Vatican. We also saw some blooming trees. I hope the weather is better next week--I think we are going back to see more cherry blossoms.
He's got sauce! Okay, so here's the update on the internet/cable saga: Ross, in his infinite web searching, persistence, and patience, has gotten us free cable for the next year--starting on Thursday. Now that's sweet! The internet is working--even the wireless (after two trips to WW to buy a router (first one didn't work)). I signed up for Netfix and we can watch unlimited movies online. It is nice to have fast enough internet to be able to do that. Maybe we will get the Roku when we finally get an actual TV (right now we are using the projector).
I now have really fast cable internet. And no cable. Grr. I was already getting spoiled by the clear pictures. I guess we'll have order cable and start paying for it. I'm not happy. Seems we can never get a break.
On the bright side, my no C diet is going well. I've lost a pound and a half so far. I will continue it over the weekend. My biggest accomplishment this week was actually working out. I did 90 minutes of yoga yesterday. I hadn't done yoga in exactly 3 weeks. I did a strength training work out today. I guess I'm getting back into working out at home. I just had to push myself to get started. I think I'm going to work out again right now.
We worked hard yesterday to get the living room cleared and the dining room set up. The place looks a lot larger now without all the empty boxes laying around. The catch--as you can see in the second photo the guest room is FILLED with boxes...mostly full. Today I am going to work on setting up that room so that we can at least walk through it.
The poor blue cabinet is holding tons of frames. Don't worry, it is still full of booze--the overflow is on the wine rack in the foreground of the photo. Ugh. Taupe walls.
We drove down to Annapolis today to have lunch with Otto. It only took us an hour to get there, and we stopped for gas! It was good to see Otto--who is here on a 4 day whirlwind tour of the area (Spring break field trip). After lunch we walked around a little--saw a bunch of cute shops. There were a ton of ice cream shops, but I'm on the no C diet for the next week--so we didn't get any ice cream. After our walk we went to Trader Joe's and Whole Foods--picked up a few things. Annapolis is so close by, I'm sure we will be down there again soon. I'd like to see the Naval Academy campus. I'm sure it will be a lot nicer in Spring or Summer. It isn't very nice out today.
When I lived in Maryland before I didn't get out much. This time I'm going to see and do as much as I can because I'm not sure how long we will be here. One thing that we have here that we didn't have in Fort Worth is nearby hiking. Yesterday we headed to Susquehanna State Park (only 15 minutes away) for a hike. It was more of a nature walk than a hike this time, but I really enjoyed it, and it was great to get some exercise and fresh air in my lungs. Next time we will try out some more challenging trails. The first part of the walk was along train tracks. It is hard to tell, but the ground is about five feet under the tracks at this one spot. Ross thought it was too easy for me and started stomping on the tracks when I was almost across. I still made it without falling (can't say the same for Ross, and I wasn't anywhere near the tracks when he was crossing).
We walked out along the Susquehanna River's edge, and walked back along the train tracks. I didn't try to walk across this section. Here you can see one track still pretty straight, and the other has sagged down to the ground below. This is the water that runs along the inside of the island we explored.
After our hike we headed to the dairy where we met up with Valerie and Evelyn. I think Evelyn really liked her ice cream (we all did). Ross had a good time playing with Evelyn--reading her a book, playing with her outside, and trying to get her to pet a lamb. Ice cream was the perfect ending to our excursion.
Ross has been having a hell of a time setting up internet here. He spent an hour on the phone with ATT trying to transfer service from Fort Worth. After speaking to 10 people in that hour he was told ATTDSL is not available in our area. Frustrated, Ross went online and signed up for Verizon phone and DSL. The phone was set up yesterday, but we were declined DSL, so Ross spent over an hour online signing up for Comcast cable internet. Understandably, Ross was very frustrated. We should have cable internet in about a week--until then we must endure unreliable unsecured internet.
When we got to the condo Ross checked to see what kind of TVreception we got with an antenna--not much. Then he plugged into the cable jack to see if we have any cable. We had a bunch of sports channels and the 4 main channels, plus some other random channels. Ross looked on the internet, and the channel numbers didn't match up with the channel guide--but I was just happy to have such a clear picture. After years of watching fuzzy television having a clear picture was such a treat. The one problem--no PBS.
We have a DVR--an old one. We need the phone line so that it can update the programming information. Yesterday Ross hooked up the DVR to the fresh phone line and downloaded the programming information. He then flipped through the channels to see if the guide was matching up to what was actually showing on TV. When we got to channel 15...nope. Guide said Judge Judy, TV was showing E!. We kept flipping channels, and they matched. Ross went back to channel 15. Judge Judy. Okay. How'd that happen? Oh, and PBS now comes in....and so does every other channel. Suddenly we have cable. And a DVR with the correct channel guide. No more downloading Colbert on iTunes. I just have to keep the crap TV watching to a bare minimum. I vow not to become a cable crap TV junkie.
Okay, I'm going to bitch about my piercing--my purchased wound. Taking care of my piercing fell by the wayside when we were packing and moving. March 6th marked two months with this new piece of jewelry, and like clockwork my body wants it out. Yesterday the bottom of the piercing actually slipped out for the first time since I've had this jewelry (it may have been the way I was sitting in bed all day). I feel like the next two weeks are critical. I've come up with a twice daily care regimen that I'm going to have to keep up with to prevent this thing from creeping out. I'm going to keep it taped in for the next few days and hope for the best.
I've noticed a few things around here that tell me I'm not in Texas anymore.
1. Seagulls. I'm used to grackles. I forget how close we are to the water. 2. Strange noises--this encompasses a lot. The windows aren't great, so we hear the cars on the road. I miss my windows and my quiet street. The water heater makes a strange buzzing sound. In the mornings I think I hear flocks of ducks flying over. Oh, and there are all the apartment sounds that I'm not used to--like being able to hear someone else's phone, garage door, television, water running, etc. 3. Parking. Troy pointed this one out. People here like to back into parking spaces. Last night, in a mostly empty parking lot we saw a Corvette back into a parking spot. Okay, he could have pulled into the spot and pulled through to the next one--which was empty! Most of the freaking parking lot was empty! Even if he hadn't pulled through when he parked he probably could have pulled through when he left. Bizarre. 4. Bailey is doing well. Expressing her own oddity she recently climbed onto my chest and slept there until Ross woke up. She snored! She's been doing that a lot lately. It's odd and cute. 5. I mentioned it before, but the carpet is strange to me. I'm not used to having carpet. And the floor vibrates when the heater is running. 6. Taupe walls. A prospective tenant asked if they could paint over the blue room in our house. I cried. I'm surrounded by taupe walls--and they want to paint over the best paint job in our house.
It has been so long since I updated that part of my blog! Now there are two new songs and I checked the links to make sure they work. You can download the songs (free) if you click the links. I'll update the songs more often. Lord knows I almost always have a song stuck in my head.
The movie was first. We went and saw The Watchmen yesterday. Ross and I both really liked it. It had all four elements of a good movie. We had both read the book (graphic novel), and we both thought they did a really good job making it into a movie.
After the movie we headed to Germantown to see Valerie, Troy, Evelyn, and Julia. I'm so thankful that she invited us over. It was nice to have a home cooked meal after a couple weeks of sandwiches and eating out. Tomorrow I'm going to unpack the kitchen so we can have our own home cooked meals. Anyway, we had a great meal (and cocktails) with Valerie and the gang. Ross played with Evelyn a whole bunch and I read her a couple of books.
It got late and Troy put Evelyn to bed. To save Val a trip up the stairs (she's 2 weeks out from foot surgery) I put Julia to bed. Easy breezy. I've never seen a baby go down that easy. I just laid her down, rubbed her belly, then sat in the glider for a couple of minutes to she make sure she was okay. I once put Evelyn down for a nap, and it was also super easy (but she tried to stall and Julia isn't old enough for that). I had to confess my love for Valerie when she calmly explained to Evelyn that she couldn't have a snack because we were about to eat dinner. Evelyn got over it, and ate dinner when it was ready. Ah, reasonable people. We had a great time with them.
Today we just relaxed. I'll start unpacking tomorrow. It will be strange trying to find a new place for everything. The carpet is strange. I already miss our wood floors.
Tomorrow is Ross's first day of work. I'm hoping that tomorrow our moving units are taken away. They are taking up three parking spaces. We are going to have to get into a new routine (not that we had a really good one the last few months).
I am not completely out of patience. I am particularly out of patience with people--flaky people. I'm tired of people making excuses. I'm tired of people saying they will do something and they don't. I'm tired of people with no courtesy or consideration. I'm tired of people acting as if their time is more important than mine. I'm really tired of people pretending they care, but then deeming I'm not worthy of the the two minutes it takes to make a phone call or reply to my e-mail.
I admit I'm also flaky, but most of the time I'm flaking out on myself. I read about this guy that was a total fuck-up, and one day he decided to change. He became a totally reliable person. If he said he was going to do something--he did it. If he said he'd be there--he was there--on time. That is the kind of person I want to be.
People aren't busy. They are lazy. I don't want to be lazy.
I like to keep a lookout for different animals when we travel. On the way we saw: deer, cows, baby cows, horses, a pony, a dog, lots of birds, various water fowl and birds of prey. We smelled a couple of skunks, but I didn't see them.
Bailey did much better today. She didn't drool as much and didn't vomit, but she did get swallowed by the seat monster again.
We are at a hotel just blocks from the condo. Tomorrow we will sleep in and then go get the keys. Unfortunately we got a smoking room (last one available), but I'm sure I will pass out soon enough and not care.
Bailey came out of her carrier about half an hour into the ride. She sat on a pillow in my lap and fidgeted nervously. Then the drooling began. After a while she opened her mouth and started dry heaving. I felt so bad for her. I thought she'd eventually puke up some saliva and mucus, but she projectile vomited! Luckily I was prepared and caught most of it. Then Ross admitted that he'd been a sucker and given her a few greenie treats this morning. So it was all his fault. We went through a second round about half an hour later, but I was fooled into thinking it was just dry heaving so I was pulling away the napkin just as she did it again--and some of it landed on Ross's leg and car seat. She sat on my lap until noon, and then got eaten by the seat monster. Nine hours later I had to fight the seat monster and drag Bailey out from under the seat.
We made it over half way to our new place today. Overall it was a pretty good day.
To take a break from today's sweeping, swiffering, and mopping we walked to the post office and the grocery store.
I took a big bag of change with us. I knew it would be a lot. More than twenty dollars. Well, here is what we put in the Coinstar machine:
Dollars 1 (I have no idea...) Half Dollars 2 Quarters 164 Dimes 316 Nickels 190 Pennies 1634
Boo-Yeah, oh, so close to 100, but since we opted for an Amazon e-certificate we didn't have to pay the 8 1/2 percent fee and got the full 99.94.
The machine rejected some Italian, German, Canadian, and Cayman coins. Along the way it also rejected a bunch of pennies, but I just kept throwing them back in the sorter, and it eventually took them all.
Ross and Joey went to Half Price Books yesterday to sell 3 boxes of books we were ready to get rid of. Two of the boxes were FULL of medical textbooks. I figured we would get 20 dollars tops for the whole lot, but---we got $81.25!!!!! Yipeee!
I have been cleaning the house while Ross has been painting. This morning he painted around the windows in the living room. Yeah! He's been in the guest room a while working on the trim, windows, and doors in there. I think we will even get the ceiling of our bedroom painted before we leave.
I have been dusting and cleaning, and scrubbing and wiping. It is like the ultimate Spring cleaning event. The major thing that is left is the floors. I have swiffered a bunch, but now we need to sweep (Ross is good at that) and mop. The scooba is on the fritz, so we packed it, and I will go across the street to see if I can buy a cheap mop. We can't put Murphy's oil soap in the scooba anyway, and I want to make the floors look really nice.
Oh, and we have to pack up the last few things that are left. Mostly clothes and bathroom items. And the Singer sewing table accidentally got left behind. Oops. We are going to try and fit that in the subee also.