Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Jack Bauer

My cat of 14 years, Casey, got sick on December 24th and passed away a few days later.  I was devastated.  Even though Casey was a nasty cat who spent his days hiding under the sofa, he was still my pet for 14 years.  I got him in college and he made the move with me from PA to VA and then from VA to MD. Casey hated everyone but me.  No joke.  He hated my parents, sister, ex-boyfriends, Rob, and my children.  Even though he would bite people from time to time, Rob and I couldn't bring ourselves to give him up because we knew that such a nasty cat would surely be euthanized. 

Even though we still miss Casey, we made the decision in January to adopt a kitten.  We went to the Frederick County shelter and found an adorable male kitten named "High-Five."  He was picked up along a country road in Thurmont by Animal Control two weeks before Christmas and brought to the shelter.  I dare say that this saved his life because we had snow over Christmas and the kitten might not have survived the freezing conditions.

The people at the shelter gave "High-Five" his name because when you put your hand out and said "high-five!" the little kitten would tap your hand with his paw.  I'll have to take their word for that because we never got him to duplicate this trick.

All four us got to meet High-Five in January and we thought he was the most adorable kitten. Alaina so badly wanted a female kitten so we could name her "Lily" but she was okay with the idea that "High-Five" was a male. We thought we'd be able to take the kitten home that day after filling out the application but that was not the case.  After we filled out the application, the shelter reviewed it and then called me that Saturday afternoon to schedule an in-person interview for that Tuesday (January 8th).  I put on my best June Cleaver outfit (complete with pearls) and went to the shelter for my interview.  I passed the interview and was able to take "High-Five" home with me.

Thus began the process of choosing a name.  We considered the name Cosmo (after Kramer on "Seinfeld") but finally agreed on Jack Bauer from "24."  Now we just call him Jack.

Daddy/Daughter Dance 2013

Alaina and Rob went to their very first Daddy/Daughter Dance on February 2, 2013.  The dance is hosted by the Frederick County Division of Parks & Recreation and was so popular last year, that this year they had two dances to accommodate all the guests.  Rob and Alaina went with our group of friends from church (they all have daughters!!) and they had a wonderful time.

As I was getting Alaina dressed and doing her hair and make-up, I flash-forwarded to her prom night and got a little misty-eyed at seeing the beautiful little girl in front of me; knowing one day she'll be a beautiful young woman.

Here are some pictures of Alaina & Rob from their very first Daddy/Daughter Dance:

Top Row: Gabe Benton, Rob, Chris Auth, Dan Long, Eric Anderson, Mark MacDonald
Bottom Row: Caroline, Alaina, Charlotte, Maurlea, Molly, Bella, Elizabeth, Taylor & Riley

Rob & Alaina's official portrait

Valentine's Day 2013

If you're a faithful reader of my blog you will know that Valentine's Day is one of my favorite holidays.  I always go all out for Valentine's Day:  homemade lollipops for the kids' parties, a gift or two for Alaina & Brady, a balloon for each of them, and Valentine's cookies.  One tradition I began last year is to decorate the kitchen in a Valentine's theme and we eat our dinner by candlelight.  It's very sweet and the kids love it.  Here are some pictures from Valentine's Day 2013:

Downton Abbey -- my new favorite show

I've always loved period dramas -- from Titanic to Somewhere in Time and everything in between, if there is a romance set in the 1910's with lavish costumes, you've hooked me!  Imagine my delight when I learned that Downton Abbey was broadcast on PBS in the US.  What a treat!  I missed the first two series so I didn't begin watching the show till this past January with series 3.  Series 3 opened with Matthew and Mary's wedding.  This was all well and good but I felt a bit lost since I had missed the first two seasons.  I immediately joined Hulu and got caught up on the first two series.  I watched all 16+ hours of series 1 and 2 in a little under one week!

All of us were stunned with how series 3 ended and are looking forward to seeing how Lady Mary begins life anew in series 4.  Here's hoping the US airing of series 4 will coincide with the UK airing so there isn't a several month lag which results in plot spoilers for fan over here in the US.