Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!
"Mirror Mirror, on the wall"

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

7 Things that make me Mad; it is all Political!!!!

I have always tried to consider what was in the best interest of the team and to have a positive impact; no matter if the team was my community, my country, the world or my family.  Among other things, I am a motivated recycler, an unapologetic fundraiser and a despot in the kitchen when it comes to healthy food.   I am so angry with the self-serving and power hungry politicians and their failure to focus on the common good.  I am equally frustrated by many people who refuse to look beyond their own special interests! 

1.   The election is just less than a year away, yet the campaigns have been distracting us for way too long, resulting in a congress that holds on too tight to absolutes to refuses to legislate.   Can’t we put a limit the amount of time spent on a presidential campaign?
2.    Our President has been too concerned about his campaign to act in the best interest of the country.  Entitlements and his approval rating intimidate him.
3.   Unions and Social Security are corrupt, and need to be reviewed and reformed.  We have no choice but to address changes and cuts that will continue to help those in need without destroying our economy. 
4.  The reality of the economy and the deficit leave no question that new taxes are necessary.  Obviously, those who can afford those taxes will be targeted.  You know who you are!  Deal with it!
5.    Newt Gingrich!  Really?????  How can the Republican Party support a candidate who has been shown so many lapses in integrity and morality?  This candidate was censored by congress for both ethics and tax violations.  Is there any quality more important than integrity for an American President to bring to the world agenda?  I would be appalled if this is best leader and role model we can come up with to shape America for our grandchildren.
6.   When our grandparents came to America they came because it was a Land of Opportunity and they took advantage of all that it offered.  They built businesses and their families and made America great.  We should legally welcome and support any immigrants who come with this spirit but not those who come to America illegally for a handout. 
7.    Pensions and compensation packages for government workers and politicians are out of proportion as compared with the private sector.

I am neither Republican nor Democrat.  I do not claim to have the answers but I care about the world we leave to our grandchildren. 

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Dinner and a movie; Technology helps Grandparents share all the "firsts"

Olivia's First teeth
First time Olivia stood up in her crib
My Dad, Papa Dickie was a very devoted Grandfather with a great sense of mischief.  Phone calls to my kids were important to him because he lived in New Jersey while we lived in Boston.  When my children were young, my Dad would tell them that he had a “television phone” and although they couldn’t see him, he could see them.  That idea delighted them and they would sing and perform for him whenever he called.  This made Papa Dickie’s calls very exciting and lots of fun for them.

If my Dad could see Skype and facetime he would see the technology that he had only wished for had come to fruition.  While I travel to New York City to see Olivia often, I just can’t get enough of her.  We fill in the blanks with face-time, daily photos on the web and you-tube videos.  Sometimes, we facetime while she is having dinner; I call it Dinner and a show.  I know that she knows who I am from the enormous smile, which crosses her face when she sees me.  I love to watch her grabbing for the computer as if to bring me closer.  I can practically share her favorite mangos with her and even see the spatter on my clothes.  I love to watch her feed herself cheerios and listen to her mummer m-m-m-m-m-m-m with great pleasure as she eats.   We can sing songs with her and enjoy each other across all the miles.

Olivia, like many babies, doesn’t always perform her baby-tricks on demand.  She likes to choose which tricks she will perform at any given time.  Sometimes, she will answer all requests for animal’s sounds and sometimes she will stubbornly refuse all appeals to quack or moo.  The good news is that the kids can document these accomplishments when Olivia decides to grace them with a performance on video and post them for us on you-tube or even e-mail them on the spot!  Olivia’s first steps and first words are downloaded on my iphone for me to watch and show-off to all my friends whenever I want. 

Nothing is better than real cuddles, but how lucky are we, 21st Century Grandparent, who can share a piece of their grandchild’s day and experience all their “firsts” on video and pictures no matter how far away?

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Hot in South Florida; You gotta love it here!

Hot????  I think not!
For the past few years, Lewis and I have been spending several cold winter weeks in southern Florida.  At first, I bristled at this idea because “I am to young for Florida”, but I am starting to really love these get-aways.  One reason is that whereever I go, I feel really young!

When my kids left after the holidays, Lewis and I went to a local restaurant we like named Taboo and sat at the bar for dinner.   When we first arrived, the bar was hopping and we took the only two seats available on the corner.  There was an older gentleman sitting next to Lewis, dressed impeccably, wearing a pink cashmere sweater and his silver hair perfectly styled, but well on his way to inebriation.  Next to me, there was a young guy who must have made a wrong turn somewhere to have ended up at this particular bar.  

We watched the football game on the T.V. and bantered with the bar tenders and our fellow diners.  We learned that there were a few other Patriots fans in the group and we speculated about our prospects for the play-offs, and complained about our defense.  We were having a really good time.

The older guy next to Lewis continued to drink one scotch after another until he was actually “stinking drunk”.   He started to lean across Lewis’ plate to get my attention.  “YOU ARE SO HOT!”  he slurred.  Again and again, he thrust himself in front of Lewis to tell me how “Hot” I am. 

Lewis was getting pretty irritated by the guy invading his space and the bartenders were embarrassed and didn’t know what to do about this inappropriate behavior but I could only laugh.

I turned to the young guy sitting next to me and said, “In any other bar in the country, I would be a geezer.  It is only in Southern Florida that I am HOT”.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Where is Blog-Grammama? HERE I AM!

Olivia and her birthday piano- Future Piano-girl
The Holidays have been hectic and lots of fun!  We have been in Florida with friends and family and as I write this, I have my first moment alone.  Olivia left at 6:00 a.m. and I am missing her sweet baby smiles and baby tricks.

Olivia's first birthday was on Dec. 30 and we celebrated all month long.  First, in New York with all her baby friends.   The celebration was held about 2 weeks early because it was impossible to gather her baby friends and family on December 30th.  No child would ask for a birthday in between Christmas and New Years, but it really means that she will have multiple celebrations; with her California grandparents and cousins over Christmas, in Florida on her actual birth date and of course the First Birthday extravaganza in New York.

The birthday party was a grand affair!  They rented out a restaurant and moved all the tables to created a large empty space for babies and the adults had the bar area.  They invited all their friends, those with children and without to share the occasion.  Drinks and Hors D’oeuvres were passed and Broadway Babies came dressed as Simba and Nala from the Lion King and performed for the little ones.  Everyone had a lot of fun; everyone except Olivia who was a bit overwhelmed by all of the attention.  Our normally independent, active baby clung to us the whole time.  

Simba and Nala in Africa- Pretty scarey!
Simba and Nala at Olivia's party-  Scarier!

To illustrate how crazy I was about this occasion, I volunteered to bring a Party Favors cake from Boston.  We love Party Favors cakes!  They made Alexis and James’ wedding cake and we like to have them for every special occasion.  They have made buttercream frosting into an art form.  This required me to make a trip to the bakery to customize the cake.  I picked colors and described exactly what I wanted.  I told them that the duck in their catalogue was sinister looking and I wanted a mommy duck, a daddy duck and sweet little baby ducks. Just to be clear, I told them that I wanted the cake that they would want to put on the cover of their next catalogue. When I went to pick up the cake it was all wrong!    The wrong color!  The wrong design!  The wrong ducks!  They had given no regard at all to my careful instruction.  “I am sorry,” the manager said, “I don’t know why they didn’t check with me before they made the cake.”  She whisked it away and about 30 minutes later they presented me with a re-worked rush-job that fit my requirements but didn't have the thick buttercream decoration that they are known for.   

But the craziest part of the whole thing was that when I got it home, I couldn’t make it fit in either refrigerator; not the  empty refrigerator in the basement or the one in my kitchen. No matter how many shelves I removed or adjusted, it just wouldn’t fit!Thankfully, the temperature outside was 50 degrees and we left it in the garage overnight, then carefully packed it in the car and drove to New York, wincing every time we stopped short or rounded a curve!  Crazy, you say!  Absolutely!  Next time we will get an amazing cake in NYC and have it delivered!   

Not the amazing cake I hoped for; but not terrible!

Blog-Grammama Wishes Everyone a Happy New Year

Olivia brings in the New Year