Friday, June 26, 2009

I say pint, you say liter

I've covered what cereal means to each of us.  Now, I bring you another chapter in the "Let's call the whole thing off" series.  This one is all about what it means to each of us to stop by the Flying Saucer for a beer on a Saturday afternoon.  

For me, it means...well...a beer.  A nice normal beer (Big Boss Angry Angel in case you're wondering) in a nice normal glass.  

And for Jason, it means a beer that comes in a receptacle as big as a wine bottle (complete with corked top, as you can see).  "Well, you said one beer.  Technically speaking, this is one beer."  Cheeky bugger.

Happy weekend, everyone!  Whether you celebrate with a regular-sized beer or a giant one, enjoy.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

For the birds

So, what else is going on is Sanger-world? Well, to put it mildly...we are obsessed with this little creature:

"Oh hai!  Pleezed to makes yur ahqaintence!"

Monday, Jason was in the yard and kept hearing this little chirping noise.  It didn't sound like a regular bird so he was curious.  He finally found this wee baby bird caught in a spider web in a little rough area between our house and our neighbor's.  We're guessing he fell out of his nest.  Without touching him, Jason scooped the web away and left him there on the ground.  The mom (or dad?) bird is keeping watch over him and bringing him food but can't get him back into the nest.  Every day we go check to make sure he's still there and so far, so good.  

"Did sumbodee sez 'injurrd burd'??  You meanz he no can fly??  Wunder whut he taste look lyke?  We stayz rite here to wait watch out for him. On unreelated matter, I can haz some Tobascoes sawce?  Kthxbai!"

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

That's so major

The past few days have gone something like this.

Me:  How can you not support your home team?
Jason:  I'm from Boston.  I was born into Red Sox Nation.
Me:  Yeah, but the Bulls aren't playing Boston.  They're playing Pawtucket.
Jason:  It's the Red Sox.
Me:  It's the PawSox.
Jason:  It's the same thing.
Me:  No it isn't.
Jason:  Yes it is.
Me:  No it isn't.
Jason: Yes it is.
Me:  No it isn't.

You may have guessed by now that the Durham Bulls were playing the Pawtucket Red Sox over the weekend.  We went to the Friday and Monday night games.

A Boston boy and his Carolina girl...

Even though we started out the game with a grand slam and two more runs on top of that, the PawSox came back and we were two runs down going into the 9th.  Rally cap time.  (Note:  Rally caps do not actually work.)  We were also totally surrounded by Sox fans.  Turns out, we were sitting in the middle of the Triangle Red Sox Nation group outing.

We went again on Monday night mainly because Clay Buchholz was pitching for the Sox and Jason wanted to see him.  This is the guy who, in 2007, pitched a no hitter for the BoSox (the 17th in Sox history) in only his second major league start.  Not a bad way to show up in the majors. 

The Bulls' dugout...

Our slugger, Ruggiano on deck.  He's the one responsible for Friday night's grand slam.

And the Bulls finally won on Monday night!!!  I'm so glad they broke that 8 game losing streak. 

And for your viewing pleasure, some lovely shots of the old Lucky Strike plant next to the DBAP (that would be Durham Bulls Athletic Park for those not proficient in solving obscure acronyms). 

As some may already know, Durham has a very long history as a tobacco town and most of the old tobacco warehouses and plants have been converted into residential condos and shopping/dining areas.  The Lucky Strike plant is no exception but the original smokestack and water tower are still there.  


I think the American Tobacco District is a perfect example of how to preserve the history of an area while giving the community a place to gather.  There's art galleries, outdoor concerts, great food, and sports - all right on top of each other.  Durham sometimes gets a bad rap but they boast several of the best restaurants in the Triangle and have really re-energized their downtown.  Just another reason I love living here...


Friday, June 19, 2009

At the ol' ball game

Last night we went with Jason's parents to a Durham Bulls (farm team for the Tampa Bay Rays) baseball game.  You've seen the movie Bull Durham, right?  It's a total sports classic...  And where Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon first met, resulting in their twenty-plus year long relationship.  Well, it was based on this team and filmed right here in Raleigh and Durham in 1987.  

It was so hot and humid yesterday and there was a visible haze just hanging over the city.  Everything looked so muted and even the sky was basically white.  Ugh.  Thank heavens they were giving out paper fans on the way in to the stadium.

One of my favorite things about baseball is all the junk food meandering around the stands.  You don't even have to get out of your seat to get a huge bag of cotton candy!  It just walks right by you!

And the ever-classic ballpark staple, the humble hotdog.

Finally, some color in the sky as the sun sets.  Unfortunately, the sun setting did not result in a cooling off.  That southern humidity will just about kill you.

Also notice the big bull on the right-hand side.  I covered this back in the summer of 2006 but just learned a new fact (courtesy of IMDB) that I had to share...  The bull was built for the movie (filmed in the old ballpark), but was retained by the Durham Bulls and is a staple of the new park.  When a Bulls player hits a home run, the red eyes light up, smoke comes out of the nose and tail lifts up.  It also says, "Hit bull, win steak. Hit grass, win salad." but this was only for the movie.  In one scene, Tim Robbins' character gives up a home run to the opposing team that goes off the bull, supposedly getting the hitter a free steak.

Jason just had to wear his by-now-damn-near-vintage Garciaparra #5 Red Sox jersey.  You can take the boy out of Boston but you can't take Boston out of the boy.  And despite the fact that he still occasionally slips back into his Boston accent for a word or two here and there, his mom totally busted his chops last night when he was talking about the Red Sox farm team - Pawtucket.  Marie jumped in and was all "Oh my Gwod Jason, you've totally lwost yoah accent.  It's 'Patucket', not 'Pawtucket'!  What's wrowng with ya?"  Love her.

Baseball under the stars (or under the clouds, as it were).

Even the Bulls are 'Canes fans!  I might've yelled "Go 'Canes!"  

Seventh inning stretch...  "Take me out to the ball game, take me out to the crowd!"

I wasn't able to get a great photo of him but here's our mascot, Wool E. Bull.  I really don't know how you wear that thing when it's 90+ degrees.  At least Stormy gets to operate in the freezing cold hockey arena!  (Note to self:  If ever take up mascot-ing as career, go for indoor sport, preferably involving ice.  Noted.)

Although the Bulls scored the first run, the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs (farm team for the Phillies) had a couple of big innings and we were down going  into the 8th.  So Jason rocked the rally cap.  We did score once more, but alas it was not enough...

This is one of those local things that we just don't take advantage of as much as we should.  It's dirt cheap ($8 for a ticket) and so much fun!  We found out that the Bulls will be playing the Pawtucket Sox this weekend so we'll be headed back for one of those games.  Can't believe we just missed Smoltz's rehab stint with the PawSox though...  (He's been out of the majors for a year due to his shoulder surgery last summer.)  But who knows?  Maybe we'll get a preview of some upcoming BoSox talent!


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Who's the Big Boss, applesauce?

Since the Sanger siblings were all going to be in the same place over the weekend, we decided to hit up the Big Boss Brewery tour one more time.  

My favorite part of the tour was when I got recognized by a blog reader for the first time.  I got a tap on the shoulder and when I turned around, a guy asked me if I was Heather from Life in a Nutshell.  (Shout out to Peaches N Curry!)  He said they had some family in town and decided to bring them to the brewery because of my mention of it on here.  Well color me flattered!  I felt like a local celebrity.

After the tour, we made our way to the pub upstairs.  There are no photos of any of us because there's NO AIR CONDITIONING in the Big Boss warehouse or pub.  And of course it was about 150 degrees outside (Because this is June in the dirrty south and that's how we do.) which made it about 175 degrees inside.  This environment does not not lend itself to optimal portrait photography settings.  In English?  We was sweatin' it up something serious.

Travelers!  

Sunday was Liam's baptism but everybody knows that after-the-baptism is the after-baptism-partay.  Liam was ready to get out of his fancy white suit and crank this thing up right.  "Hey, you.  You, in that fancy pastel getup.  That's a nice tie by the way.  But you know where I can score some cake?  I mean, I just pledged my soul to The Almighty.  That should get a kid some cake, am I right?"

There was tons of fun to be had with the leftover giftwrap from Liam's loot.  

Jason was not so amused.

My relaxing makeover courtesy of Katie...

And just in case you have lost your mind and forgotten how stinking cute Anna is, here's a wee reminder.  

She LOVES that cat.  

Based on the amount of viewable ceiling in this photo and the generally lopsided cabinet to ceiling ratio, I'm going out on a limb to say that it was taken by someone who is less than four feet tall.  My money's on Katie.  

And I'll leave you with two stories.  One about Anna and one about Katie.  

Anna's goes like this:  On the way to Raleigh on Saturday, while going 80 miles an hour on Interstate 40, Anna opened her car door.  And that is Anna in a nutshell.  Joe and Amy now have a new car with a very technologically advanced premium package locking system.

(EDIT:  After Jason read this post, he informed me that it sounded like I was saying that Anna opened her door and it got blown off the car, necessitating the need for a new car.  Though I'm sure it was pretty insane, it was not quite all that dramatic.)

Katie's is slightly less terrifying.  The other day, as she was shopping with Joe, she asked him what he was giving to the cashier.  He told her they were coupons and that coupons help you save money.  Her response?  "Oh!  Save money.  Live better.  Wal-Mart.  I've seen that on the Disney channel!"  (Nevermind the fact that she's never even set foot in a Wal-Mart and doesn't even watch very much tv.)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

I'm torn

...between wanting to be a skinny girl again and wanting to eat Cheetos 12 hours a day every day.  

Seriously.  I love food.  Mostly junk food.  I don't care what you think about that.  I'm not afraid to say that, for the most part, I don't have a particularly sophisticated palette.  I would eat a damn Bojangles cajun filet biscuit three meals a day if I could.  And in between, I would snack on buffalo wings and mozarella sticks and frozen mini corndogs.  

But I also love my size 26 James jeans.  And therein lies the problem.

I don't know why I'm telling anyone this.  Mainly because I think some sick part of me wanted to admit to thinking about Cheetos all day.

Monday, June 15, 2009

The non-saga continues

I have officially lost the will to blog.  Not that we haven't done anything interesting or blog-worthy...  I mean check out this incredibly exciting (and mostly previously Facebook mobiled) stuff:

Upon discovering the wall o' plasmas and recliners at Tobacco Road Sports Cafe (which is ironically enough non-smoking), I finally completed my metamorphosis into a boy.  By the by, in case anyone is actually worried, Jason totally busted me filing my nails during a period break and yelled "What are you doing??  There's no manicures in hockey!!"

Jason has been embroiled in a long-standing Golden Tee tournament/war/bet.  

I've also been doing a fair bit of reading al fresco.

And hanging out nekkid with Melanie and taking nekkid pictures.  We (and a couple of others) were wearing strapless tops that evening and thought it was beyond hilarious to take photos from the shoulders up all night, thus pretending we were nekkid.  "Hey!  We're nekkid at Mellow Mushroom!  Hey!  We're nekkid at The Point!"  Trust me.  If you were three beer buckets in, you would have thought it was funny too.  

Riveting, right? 

I know.  

Sorry.

But I've got a few things percolating for this week so hold tight...  Or at least wait till the end of the week before you delete me from your Google Reader.  Kthxbai!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Hello random, my old friend

Here's what we've been up to lately:






Ummmmm...








Errrrr...








Hmm.








Not a damn thing apparently.  Unless you count nursing cocktails on our front porch.

So I checked my camera and iPhone for photos of us doing something.  ANYTHING.  Here's what I've got.

According to the photos I uncovered, last Sunday turned into quite the Sunday Funday.  After sitting on the porches of two different bars, I thought turning a half-eaten pretzel and two dips into a study in anatomy was a great idea.  Sadly, I thought documenting it was an even better idea.  Palm, meet forehead.


Similarly, why I thought it necessary to document us testing out porch furniture at Target, I'm not sure.  Probably a product of the multiple drinks at the aforementioned two different bars.  So, errr, here's Jason!  In the garden section at Target!  Sitting in a chair that does not yet technically belong to us!  Behold!  Or whatever.

And here's us attempting to atone for driving an SUV.  You see, our yard is roughly the size of a credit card.  And a couple of weeks ago, we had a bit of a yardwork mishap. Push-mower go BOOM.  Mid mow.  Oops.  So I guess lawn mowers need oil changes too?  Anyway, perhaps it could be repaired.  But really?  Lawn mower go BOOM once, shame on lawn mower.  Lawn mower go BOOM twice, shame on us.  Or something like that...  Bottom line, it's just not worth the risk.  So instead of plunking down for another fancy gas-operated number,we got us one of them there manual thingies with the little rolly blades and it works great!


And ummm, that's about it.  Exciting times round these parts.  Oh wait!  We bought a bed full of exorbitantly priced pillows yesterday at BB&B.  How's that?  No?  

Uhhh, we went out to Tobacco Road Sports Cafe on Saturday night and I got hit on when Jason dropped me off to grab a table while he parked.  (Guy: "Hey there, are you following us?"  Me: "Uh, no."  Guy:  "Well, you should be."  On the one hand - dude, try harder.  On the other hand - Yessssssss.  Still got it.)  Better?  Still no?

Fine.  I give up.  

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Two gummies?

Jason and I made another trip to Charlotte last weekend, this time for Anna's ballet recital.  It was her first and she was AMPED.  She couldn't wait to have all the attention on her, after having to tolerate Katie's big weekend.  

We arrived at Joe and Amy's right about bath time (just to clarify - bath time for the girls, not us, in case you were wondering).  After Anna got out of the tub, she was instructed to dry off and go get her pj's on.  This is what she came out in:

Yes, a practice tutu.  She showed off some of her sweet moves in the kitchen.  A little preview of sorts.  Then, she broke out the jazz hands.

But ballet is not Anna's only skill.  She's also quite the gymnast.  In fact, she got a gymnastics ribbon earlier that day.  In lieu of proper bars, any dad or uncle will suffice.

The next morning, Anna woke up a bit grouchy.  (Perhaps that's putting it mildly.  She was growling at everyone who came near her.)  Maybe the stress of performing was getting to her?  Anyway, Jason had a talk with her and told her that he was going to keep a bag of gummy bears in his pocket all day and if she was nice, he would periodically give her gummies.  This seemed like a pretty good deal to her so she shaped up pretty quick. 

She was back to herself in no time.  And back to one of her favorite activities - using Jason as playground equipment.  Though he will readily admit that he brings it on himself.  He came up with this awesome game all on his own.  Basically, scoop the nearest child into a blanket, swing them back a forth a couple of times to build up momentum, then throw them smack into the sofa.  (A very soft sofa is preferable required by law in most states.)

Of course, Katie needed a turn as well.  Nevermind the fact that she's a good bit larger and about 10 pounds heavier than Anna...  Jason needs to work on his strongs anyway.

And then...  then it was the moment Anna had been waiting for.  She finally got to get into her costume and get ready for the stage.  Dead serious: have you ever seen anything so cute ever in all your born days?  I didn't think so.

Getting some unsolicited advice from Katie, the old pro.  "Take it from me kid.  If I know one thing, it's recitals.  This ain't my first rodeo.  If you forget the moves, just smile and wave.  Smile and wave."

It was difficult to get many good photos of her on stage but I think this pretty much captures it.

Remember Jason and Anna's gummy bear agreement from the morning?  Wouldn't you know it, the second Anna came off the stage, she looked right at Jason and said "Two gummies?".  And it was tragedy because Jason had changed clothes for the recital and left the gummies in his shorts pocket.  The look on her face was priceless.  Her mind couldn't comprehend that Jason didn't have the gummies.

At the end, when they brought all the dancers on stage to get their trophies, Anna stood there holding hers above her head like it was the Stanley Cup.  I have never seen a child so excited to get a trophy.  

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that Katie has a total of six trophies in her room on her special shelf and Anna has coveted one of her own for some time now.  On the way back home, she kept holding it up and saying "Dis my trophy.  Is very special for me.  You like to see it?  You can hold it but be very careful because is very special for me.  I put it in my room."

Lugging her trophy around the yard...

A post-recital game of Chutes and Ladders.  Beware.  Anna cheats.

Jason and Anna roaring.  Yes, roaring.

There was no way Katie was letting Anna get all the glory of the weekend so she took me outside to show me her ballet moves.  And to remind me several times that she had six trophies.

Meanwhile, Anna was still wearing her costume at about 7:00 that evening.

But the fun doesn't stop there.  On the way home from Charlotte, Jason all the sudden says "How would you feel about stopping in Greensboro and staying at the O. Henry this evening?"  Well, I think the answer to that would be a resounding "Hell-to-the-YES PLEASE!!"  (Or, if you're not as crass as me, "I feel quite good about that suggestion.")  And so we did. 

This place is one of my favorite things about Greensboro, despite the fact that we really couldn't afford anything about it when we actually lived there.  We were either poor college students or poor college grads.  Even so...one year for my birthday, Jason booked a room and a table at the hotel's restaurant - Green Valley Grill - and we lived it up for the night.  Thank the lord for credit cards and being young and stupid enough to have no guilt about credit card debt, right?

So it was nice to come back and stay without having to pay interest on it later.  We partied like rock stars.  That is, if rock stars consider it a party to order up blue crab dip and steaks and a bottle of red and a tarte tatin and a single dram of whiskey that cost nearly the same as our entire bottle of wine.  Granted, this bottle of wine was a little bit cheaper than what we typically end up with because it was recommended by our waiter when we asked for a light red, but Jason's Macallan 18 year single malt habit may someday ruin us financially.  Right after my Louis Vuitton habit probably...
  
One of the great things about the O. Henry is their southern breakfast.  Eggs, bacon, grits, biscuits and gravy...  My thighs are none too happy about it now but it was worth it for sure.  After breakfast, we sat outside in the Orangery for a while and enjoyed our coffee.

Leave it to Jason to turn an ordinary drive up the interstate into a mini-vacation.  Just another reason I can't help lovin' that man o' mine.