Thursday, January 28, 2016


I got to be the ringmaster for a day tonight. Linda, our fearless bell choir leader is out for a few weeks to recuperate from surgery, so she let me have a crack at directing the rehearsals tonight. It was a lot of fun. Oh, the power of the baton! I might have a sore throat tomorrow from counting out loud so much, and I also might wake up in the middle of the night humming "Hallelujah" and singing "1-and-a, 2-and-a, 3-and-a, 4-and-a" over and over! Thank heaven the bell choir members know what they're doing and how to set up for choir.

I also appreciated Helen and Reagan (with Barb in the middle) for subbing tonight for missing choir members. They're such good sports, and I know from band they'll play anything they're asked to play!

Frère Jacques

Ed and I had a late lunch with my brother, Jon this afternoon. He had a layover in Baltimore, and we met him at his hotel, which just happened to be next to a Thai restaurant Ed knows. It was nice seeing Jon. We wanted to take him for a walk, but with all the snow on the ground we were forced to settle for stuffing our faces instead. He's our new FitBit buddy, and is doing great.

I was wondering tonight why I never thought to call him Frère Jacques, or sing "Are You Sleeping, Brother John" to him. I guess, being 15 years younger got him out of a lot of sibling teasing!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016


Ed and I have been forced indoors by the mountains of snow, so we're getting our daily steps by jog/walking on our matching mini-trampolines. I don't know what that is called, but why not trogging? We watched a little Netflix to see what the hubbub is about on Making of a Murderer. We've only watched a couple of episodes, but so far it seems like a really long Dateline with annoying music in the background. The plot is mildly interesting, but 8 more hours of Steven Avery seems pretty painful!

Bonus points if you can spot Coda in this picture!

Monday, January 25, 2016

More Digging

We did some more snow digging today, opening a path to the basement. Coda has terrible cabin fever. Everywhere she turns she runs into more snow!

Ed had to dig out the mound at the top of the drive way (courtesy of the city snow plow).  I worked down below, and we dug out of the basement from both directions.

Coda now has new places to plant herself in her constant vigilance against deer in our yard!

Ed even carved out a special pee cave for Coda, which she really appreciated. Sadly, it looks like it will be a long snow melt before we can take the dog back on the fire trail!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Snow Dig

The official snow totals for Eldersburg were 31 inches, breaking the previous records for total snowfall in one storm. The average yearly snowfall is only 19 inches here.

We started digging out again this morning. Ed gets about three times as many FitBit steps as I get when he runs the snow blower. I am a lot jealous.

You'd think I'd get some extra steps just for heavy lifting. It is hard when you have to walk 8 feet just to dump the shovel!

Coda was just interesting in finding a good place to pee, which was proving difficult!

She even went off-road briefly, but regretted that immediately. It was too much snow for her to negotiate!

Ed followed Coda's footsteps and also regretted it immediately. He looks like he was having fun in the picture, but in reality, he was on the verge of being somewhat annoyed!

Fortunately, the sun is out and he dried up quickly!

If it wasn't for all the work we'd really be enjoying the snow. Our street still hasn't been plowed, so we're not going anywhere soon!

Resting up for the Morrow

It finally stopped snowing about 9 p.m. last night. The chair was not buried, but the table looks like a termite mound!

Ed and I watched Inside Out and ate our stew to fortify ourselves for more shoveling in the morning.

One more picture of Coda in the snow. She licked her lips so much I wonder if she has chapped lips today. She looks like a doggy snowcicle!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Plowing Through the Snow

We started digging out from underneath our snow this morning. Ed did the heavy work with the snowblower.

Coda did not want to come outside. I put a rug out for her to sit on so she could watch us work.

I helped clean up behind Ed with the shovel. I really couldn't keep ahead of the snow. As fast as we cleaned it up, it just kept coming down.

After a couple of hours, Ed finally punched through to the mailbox!

Now, if the city ever plows our road, we could actually go somewhere!

It made a beautiful snowy scene of our house!

Coda was reluctant to go outside, preferring to watch from the mud room.

Ed and I would prefer to watch from the house, as well. It's fun watching our snow pile up on the deck. It looks like about 16 inches now. We're wondering if it will go over the arms of the chairs and if the deck can hold the weight. We're keeping our fingers crossed!

Dusk to Dawn Snow Totals

We went to bed with only a couple of inches of snow on the patio last night.

We woke up to a double-decker cake on our table! It is over a foot and still coming down!

I shoveled a path in the front for Coda to go outside, bu she refused to pee in the snow! She pretended and ran back in. I had to get Ed down to make her get down to business!

We're looking forward to being snowbound this weekend!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Paint Nite at Famous Dave's

Crystal gave Ed and me a Paint Nite gift for Christmas. We had our excursion last night at Famous Dave's in Owings Mills. We started with dinner and were ready to paint at 7 o'clock.

By 8 we had finished the background and had a little break while we waited for it to dry. It was fun working with acrylics. We mixed all our colors and added a little water. Every painting was slightly different.

I was surprised to find that even I, who am not artistically inclined, can paint a tree when it is explained to me.

Ed, being the more advanced artist, was able to add a little red cardinal on the middle tree. My bird had major problems and had to be excised from the painting.

To make our snow paintings even more magical, we drove home in a light snow, our first of the season!

We'll enjoy looking at our pictures on the bar as the snow picks up tomorrow night. We're expecting 1-2 feet of snow Friday night into Saturday. Painting a peaceful snow scene was a good way to get into the mood for it!

Chipotle Comes to Town!

Things are really looking up in Eldersburg! Chipotle opens today, and Ed and I scored some free passes for lunch yesterday so the staff could practice preparing food. Helen was able to join us after band. Helen and I got the salads, which were pretty light, as they only had meat and lettuce. Next time we'll remember to ask for beans, as well! Ed enjoyed a giant burrito. It was fun celebrating a great new food option in town with a free meal!

Paw Print

Coda got a paw print kit for Christmas, and we took her impression a few days ago. She put up with it. We found out we should have washed her paw beforehand!

After 48 hours it hardened up. It turned out cute, and we look forward to putting it on our Christmas tree this year!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Walk, Woods, Crepes and a Movie

Saturday was cool but sunny. It made some beautiful shadows as we walked through the woods.

The water at the swimming hole was still and clear. I even had to take off my jacket, it was so warm by then.

After working around the house all day we treated ourselves to crepes at Sofie's Crepes in Baltimore. It is a bit of a hole in the wall, but the crepes were good.

It was right next door to the Charles theater where we saw the movie, Brooklyn. The movie was very enjoyable, and better than the book. The book portrayed the main character as having little personality and letting life just happen to her. In the movie she had a little spark, and was a much more sympathetic character. It was a foreign film (Irish), but fortunately we were able to understand the language!

Noodles Come to Eldersburg

Noodles and Company opened up in Eldersburg just before the holidays, and Ed and I finally had time on Friday to pop over and try them out. We give them an A. They had a broad menu of interesting choices. I got the Thai hot pot and Ed the stroganoff. We're going to have to go back and try out all the other menu items, as well. They're a welcome addition to our fast food choices.

On another happy note Chipotle of Eldersburg is opening on Thursday of this week! Things are looking up!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Two Big Birds

I wore my big bird outfit to walk with Suzanne and Harper this morning. I didn't have any idea that I'd be chasing another 'bird' this afternoon.

Ed got a drone for Christmas. We thought it would be fun to take an aerial picture of our house. On it's second flight, the drone took flight! It crossed the street and never looked back!

After an hour of searching, Ed was able to use the base unit to give him a hint where it was. We found it 1/2 a mile away on another street in our neighborhood. It was 40 feet up in a tree. It is actually about 10 feet higher than the picture of the tree!

We needed a bigger ladder!
With the help of our 22 foot ladder and three poles duct-taped together, I was able to hook it out of the tree! I was glad Ed and our new friend Al were down at the bottom keeping the ladder steady!

All in all, a very satisfying adventure with a happy ending!

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Dinner with Tabitha

We had Tabitha, my friend from German class over for dinner yesterday. It was fun to have time outside class to talk (in English). We been together for 3 semesters, and I've really enjoyed getting to know her. She also lets me know what's going on behind the scenes at McDaniel College!

It was fun having Ed home to help clean house. He is an excellent vacuumer!

Tabitha even brought baked apples for dessert! Es hat uns gut geschmeckt!

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Happy Retirement Day, Ed!

Ed officially retired yesterday! He came home from work to find his faithful dog (and wife) waiting for him.

We decided to celebrate by doing some things he'd never done before.

Ed took his first trip on the Baltimore subway! We picked up the subway in Owings Mills and got off about a block from the Inner Harbor. It was an easy ride, and saved traffic frustrations and parking money!

We got our 10,000 steps by walking around Harbor East, Pier 6 and the Inner Harbor. We don't often have time to just meander around the streets of Baltimore, so we really enjoyed our walk.

By the time we were ready to eat, we had worked up a healthy appetite.

We chose Fogo de Chao, a Brazilian steak house for dinner. The pre-meat buffet was great, and we had a hard time saving room for the main course.

They had more cuts of beef than I knew existed! It just kept coming!

I wish I could make a Parmesan pork loin as tender as theirs! It was delicious!

We've decided the best course of action next time we come is to split every serving of meat so we can taste it all. We ended up surrendering before we even got to the Cornish hens!

Our last new experience of the day was stopping at the Fractured Prune in Owings Mills for doughnuts. They make each doughnut fresh and dip it in glazes and sprinkles to create any of a number of combinations. We got Black Forest, Margarita, Key Lime, and 9 more! (They were cheaper by the dozen.)

We were so full from dinner that we only managed to split one doughnut before bedtime. We wish we still had the whole family here with us so we could get some help finishing the box!

I hope Ed had a happy retirement day! I know I did!