Tuesday, November 27, 2012

November Birthdays, Etc

There were a couple of very important birthdays celebrated in November.

One of which was Laura's. She chose to have Nestle Drumsticks for her dessert. We stuck a candle right in the top so she had something to blow out.

Then of course there was my birthday. I chose to have cupcakes. After a big Thanksgiving week full of way too much food, cupcakes seemed like a "smaller" option. They were delicious!

In other news, I found this great dog bed at Aldi for $7 over the weekend. Of course Jenny doesn't seem to like it. I even put her favorite blanket on top of it. But she's chosing to sit next to the bed instead of on the bed. Maybe eventually she'll like it.

This was the beautiful sunrise on Thanksgiving morning.
And this was the lovely snowfall on the morning of my birthday. There isn't a lot of snow left now, and a warm up is on its way. But it won't be long before the snow is up to the top of the deck rail...

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012

I know, I'm slow with the blogging. But we've been busy! We had a house full of people for Thanksgiving. Alex and Jeff enjoyed the appetizers. Jenny enjoyed the turkey that "accidentally" fell off the counter by my dad...

Laura and Kelly made sure their places were set.

Dad once again made a perfect turkey.
We enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving together. My parents and brother were here for the holiday, and Gary, Paula and the girls were able to join us too. It was a fabulous time!

Eric had gone to Boston to spend time with Kelsey at Greg & Dianes. They still made an appearance via Skype.

After dinner, Mom and Kelly enjoyed watching some Tom & Jerry.

We all searched the classifieds to figure out what we "needed" during Black Friday. Turns out we needed nothing, so we all slept in instead.

Earlier in the day, we did the Turkey Trot in Baldwinsville.

Here are Dad & Jeff, ready to run! Dad came in first for his age group and finished in 43 minutes. I stayed right with him the whole way.

And Alex had a great showing. 13th out of almost 2,000 runners.

This was our view from the starting line. When the gun went off, which we actually never even heard, it took almost 4 minutes to even get to the starting line.

On Friday, we all went out and bought new running shoes. These were mine. Aren't they fun? They're the most comfortable shoes I've ever owned. Now I need to use them for what they are intended...

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Yesterday was the NY State Federation Cross Country meet down in Wappinger's Falls, NY. It's on the banks of the Hudson River, in Bowdoin Park. The photo above is a nice panoramic of the park. The Federation Championships is a big meet. Only the best teams in the state get to go. The fact that Liverpool was even invited to run in the Federation meet is an huge honor. They only invite the top 25 teams in the whole state.

Eric and I drove down the night before the meet and stayed in a hotel in Poughkeepsie. Which was only a few miles north of Wappinger's Falls. We found this fun diner to have dinner. The food was excellent.

And they even served beer. Even better!

We always pass the time taking silly pictures of each other. I love the perspective of the plate in the picture I took vs. the picture that Eric took. It's the same plate. Really.

Here's a picture from the park the morning of the big race. It weather was beautiful, for November 17th. Temperatures were in the 50s and there was not a cloud in the sky.

I posted the race photos on Facebook, if you haven't seen them yet. This is after the race during the awards ceremony. The team placed 6th overall. Which is excellent. It's actually the 3rd best place that a Liverpool team has ever achieved at this meet. The meet itself was insane. I have never witnessed anything like it. 250 of the fastest kids in the entire state running as fast as they could for 3.1 miles. They were neck and neck the entire way. I can't imagine just trying not to fall or get tripped. It was elbow-to-elbow pretty much the whole way. There was only 58 seconds between 2nd place and 75th place. Which means kids were finishing faster than 1 per second. And trying to take pictures was crazy too, there were just so many kids all crammed together.
I actually managed to get a picture of 2 Liverpool kids, including Alex, in this shot. I think I took 20 pictures from this spot, and only had 3 with any Liverpool runners in it.

Here's a fun picture of all the parents that made the trek down. These are a great group of people. It's fun to have created friendships with all of them. It's going to be strange not to see them all every week. Only half of the boys do indoor track (3 of the top 7 are swimmers), so I guess I'll see the rest in the Spring...

Sunday, November 11, 2012

XC Banquet

Tonight was the annual end of the season Cross Country banquet. Although, the season isn't quite over just yet... looks like the Top 7 are going to Federations on Saturday. So we've got another road trip this weekend!

These are the juniors on the team, getting their awards/letters.

Alex (or AC as his team calls him) got another pin for his letter. He got a few certificates too. 1st Team All League and 2nd Team All Conference. (I think that's what they were called.)
Yesterday Alex and I took a trip to Buffalo to watch the State XC meet. It was quite an event. Two of Alex's teammates had qualified to run. Ben the Freshman (above) finished 15th overall, quite an accomplishment for just a 14 year old kid!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Weekend Update

I can't even tell you how awful the weather was yesterday for the Section III Championships. This photo doesn't do it justice. It was 38 degrees and sleeting at the start of the race. I felt awful for the kids who were running. I'm pretty sure Alex wishes he had worn gloves or some sleeves or something. But he still did really well. It wasn't the fastest race of the year, but it was by far the most difficult. Alex came in 22nd overall, and 4th for his team. I loved the retro orange uniforms they wore.

Two kids from Liverpool made it to the State meet as Individuals. (Ben and Dan, top row... the short guys. One is a freshman, one is a sophomore.) And of course Fayetteville-Manlius qualified their whole team... next year might have a different outcome... Liverpool is only graduating 1 senior from their Top 7. But this year, the season isn't quite over yet. They're waiting to see if they're going to get a bid to run in the Federation Meet. We'll find out next Saturday. Meanwhile, they keep on running.

And look who came up for the weekend to see Alex run. My parents and my brother! I'm sure they were wishing for warmer weather yesterday too, but it was fun having them here. And I'm glad they got to see Alex run, even if the weather didn't cooperate. We're looking forward to having them again in 2 weeks for Thanksgiving.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Hamburger Pie, Hot Dogs and Super Storms

I haven't posted any recipes for awhile. Here's one I hadn't made in years. Hamburger Pie. It's perfect comfort food for a pre-apocalyptic meal.

This recipe is from an old Better Homes and Gardens Hamburger cook book I have. I think maybe my mom gave it to me? I'm not sure, but it's got some great recipes! And the recipe is online if you'd like to try it. It's super easy, and only has 5 ingredients. And I only use real potatoes, not fake ones. And I substituted baby carrots for the green beans, because certain people I live with don't like green beans... oh and I didn't put in onions either because of that same certain person.

Jenny got to suffer for her annual "Hot Dog" costume pose. She lasted about 23 seconds this year.

Stay safe everyone, Superstorm Sandy is probably going to affect most of my loyal blog readers in one way or another. I was shocked by the amount of people at the grocery stores today with full carts of bottled water. I didn't realize we were in the epi-center of the storm, but I suppose the weather folks and the media like to think that everybody should be prepared no matter what. I did get a small package of batteries for our flashlights, just in case we lose power. Other than that, I think we have enough food to last a week. Plus we live less than 5 minutes from 2 different Wegmans, a Price Chopper and a Tops, so I think we'll be ok.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Chauffeuring Lidia

So today I stopped by Bridge Street (and Ch. 9). I hadn't been there in 2 1/2 years, when I left for WCNY. It was strange being back. But nice to see all my old friends and co-workers.

And the reason I was there is because I was Lidia Bastianich's chauffeur!

Lidia was in town for a WCNY fundraising event last night, and while she was here, she had a bunch of other media commitments. And who better to escort her over to Bridge Street than me? I picked her up at her hotel this morning and drove her over to the Channel 9 studios.

She did a cooking segment on "Bridge Street" and talked about her new book, and her new pastas and sauces available at Tops.

She even had a wine with her name?!

After the show, we drove back to WCNY where she signed a bunch of books for us. I got one for myself too. I love all her recipes. And her show! What a fun day getting to hang out with a "celebrity"! (And if you don't know who Lidia Bastianich is, go do a web search... and start watching cooking shows on PBS! )

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

League Champs

Today was the CNYCL Championship.

Alex was hoping for a personal Top 10 finish. The team was looking to win the League title.

They've been back and forth with Baldwinsville all season.

Everybody raced their hearts out.

And all the goals were met. Alex placed 8th overall, which put him on the All-League First Team, and Liverpool beat Baldwinsville by a mere 2 points. Next week is when it really counts, at Sectionals. But the League title is nice to take home.
On a side note, Alex figured out that his time from today's race (16:06) would have put him in 2nd place at last year's CNYCL Championship meet. He placed 18th last year with a time of 16:55. With that time this year, he would have placed 27th. It just shows you how much everybody has improved this year and how competitive Section 3 is this year.

Sunday, October 21, 2012


The tree in front of our house looked lovely yesterday. I'm thinking the raking will commence soon. Anyone want to help??

Sunday, October 14, 2012


As you all probably know by now, Alex had a big meet in Manhattan this weekend. Alex rode down with the team, so Eric and I both took Friday off and went down. We had nice leisurely drive, stopped at a diner along the way for lunch. Then arrived at our hotel around 4:30.

We stayed at the Courtyard Marriott in Tarrytown. Which was a very nice hotel. They had a cafe/bar in the lobby where we enjoyed Happy Hour and dinner. We also were forced to watch the Yankees game, which was on every single TV in the hotel. We managed to survive...

Then Saturday morning, we got up and headed to the Bronx for the race. They didn't run until after 1:30, so again, we had a nice leisurely trip into the city. We arrived around 11 and after lots of stress trying to find a place to park, we paid a nice man $20 to park at the golf club next to the park. It was actually very convenient, and worked out fine. We probably would have still been looking for a place to park if we hadn't parked there...

The race was held at Van Cortlandt Park next to Manhattan College. It was a beautiful area. And it was a gorgeous day. A little chilly at the start, but sunny and beautiful.

And leave it to Eric to always find interesting things to take pictures of. I'm not sure who this was, but it was in the middle of the park.

And this is when we ran into the team. I hadn't seen Alex since I dropped him off at school the day before. I'm glad they made it ok!
This was about how close I was allowed to get before the race. He was 'in the zone'... I steered clear as best I could... 

More interesting things to photograph.

 This is the start of the race.Way down there was the starting line. Spectators lined up on the side.

 And after the start of the race, the last time I saw them was at the finish. Not a real spectator friendly course, but it was a fast one. It was only 2.5 miles. Just enough time for all us slow pokes to trek across the park to the finish line!

 Alex had a fantastic day. He finished 23rd overall in his race and 3rd for the team, in a time of 13:37. The top 6 runners on their team all finished under 14:00. That's pretty good!
And it was good enough to earn them a #1 finish in their race. There were 31 teams in their race. And 7 varsity races overall. We're still waiting to see the results of all 7 races merged together. If you'd like to see results from their race, click here.
Eric took lots of pictures on the way home too... can you guess where this is??