12/20/2009

10" of celebrations.


This weekend started with a party at our house. Friday night we gathered some people from our community group (aka bible study) and our old community group, warmed some glögg. and put out some cookies. Micah was in charge of the glögg (warmed wine with vodka and spices), while I was in charge of baking gingerbread cookies (turned out well for my first go - snowflakes with frosting). We stood around in the kitchen and chatted before starting our Yankee Swap (aka Dirty Santa aka White Elephant). Our was a little different than usual in that we asked people to re-gift. Find something at home you didn't like or didn't want anymore, wrap it and bring it over. Some of the gifts from the evening were a old cookbooks, a framed Ruben Studdard photo and Halloween decorations. After that we played Mad Gab, which is super fun if you've never tried it.


Saturday we ran errands in the morning - picked up Micah's snowboard that had gotten a tune up and grabbed our meat CSA. That afternoon, we went with Pete and Vanessa to see Candlelight Carols at Trinity Church in Copley. It's an amazing building and the choir was great. We hopped a cab and went back home to grab our things for holiday party #2 of the weekend.

We walked on over to Artis and Jeremy's house, which we found was only about 3 blocks away. Small world since Micah went to high school with Artis. Who knew they'd end up in the same town and be neighbors to boot. All of the folks at the party were from Jeremy's MIT grad school crowd. Most had recently returned from internships ranging from Frankfurt to Dallas, mostly at aerospace companies like Boeing I think. The food was amazing - they cooked dinner for everyone. I was expecting something like chili - tasty but for the masses. No, they cooked beef brisket, mashed potatoes, broccoli, rolls and other yummy stuff. So good! After dinner, we played Yankee Swap there too, but not with re-gifts. Although we did end up with a mini tsunami maker (looks like a middle school science project).

Sunday morning we were supposed to get our first big snowstorm of the year, and we sure did. When we got up, there were probably a good 8 inches that fell between 1am and 8am. If I haven't mentioned before, I love snow snow snow! We pulled on our warm clothes and headed into town for church which we followed by a tasty brunch in our neighborhood at Tupelo, a southern place. We met Pete and Vanessa again and munched on breakfast grits (fried, with cinnamon sugar), biscuits, and chicken and waffles (strange at first but so tasty!). Then homeward where we settled in for the evening. Micah's friend from work, Brian, had been snowed in up here for 2 days (was supposed to go home to Maryland, but was severely delayed), so he came over and Pete came down and we ate some italian dinner and watched National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. A new classic. Snowfall totals for Saturday were around 10", although I'd like to think it was more like 14"



12/17/2009

Christmas comes but twice a year.


After last year's modest Christmas affair, this year's was decidedly more upbeat, more jovial, and for a night really made us all realize that we should get to know those who are around us every day just a bit better.

Mike handed out down jackets to everyone in the office (which came in handy today with the 3 windchill) and a little something extra to put in the pockets.

We then had dinner at the perennial favorite, Oleana (which had been rented out just for us), followed by drinks at Trina's Starlight Lounge, right around the corner from my place.

It was a lovely evening.



12/16/2009

Newport.



We spent a snowy Saturday in Newport.

Nope.

It was cold as ice, but there wan't much snow around at all.


My friend Tony and I surprised our wives by wisking them out of town for an entire day of opulence (we wore suits [I wore a bowtie for the first time]) in the very modest (read: immodest) town of Newport, RI.

It was so cold that we didn't pull the camera out to take many pictures. We were worried we'd lose a digit or two. Apologies on that.



We started our day at the Edward King House for a holiday bazzar. With all due respect, it was a bunch of old people (ladies) selling used Christmas ornaments. We lasted about 13 minutes in there. The most exciting part is when I almost fell down the stairs. Lot of buzz in the room then.


Then some lunch at the Newport Creamery.



Next on to tour the mansions. You should read the links about them. We were only able to take in two in our afternoon.

They are unreal, and they don't allow cameras inside. So we simply have a few establishing shots.



Then we headed back downtown to have some dinner at the White Horse. The Tavern was built in 1672 and was the first tavern in America. The food was top notch. I had the Beef Wellington. I tried to order the fireplace. But it remained a few tables away.


The last bit for the night was a choral concert at Salve Regina University. SRU was put up in a bunch of old mansions, so I dare say it's the more beautiful and most French looking school in the US. Due to dinner running a bit over, we got the the concert and there was no room in the inn (read: Ochre Court). So we spent the two hours in the rafters, near a copy machine, listening to the sounds of the season envelope the gilded arches.


The back of Ochre Court during the day.

12/15/2009

$1 for Christmas.



We're raising money for cancer research via our company Christmas card.

We'll give $1 for every view. Get to sharing.

12/14/2009

Logos.

Morning.

I was getting a lot of hits on my website this morning. I went searching and found the reason.

Two logos I did are on the front page of Logolounge.com today.




They are also in Volume 5 of the series, available at your local bookstore.

Oh, and the logos I did are for Yard and Zeus Trumpets.

12/10/2009

When life hands you lemons.




Make a movie.

That's what a former colleague of mine did.

He was laid off from Arnold. Then went on to make a movie.

I went to a pop up screening the other night in Boston. The movie was really well done.

What's really cool is that the movie is about folks who are laid off in advertising. As such, these small screenings are free. Fundamentally, Eric has a problem charging those same people who don't have jobs to come see a movie about others with no jobs.

It's a fine story. Albeit fairly insular (we in advertising tent to think that everyone cares about what we do when in reality it's just those in advertising who pay attention to advertising).

It won't change much in your life. Especially if you are unemployed.

What it might do, however, is get you to put in your two week's notice.


12/06/2009

Bowling in a winter wonderland.

So, our weekend was off to a super-busy start on Saturday. We went bowling with a crew from our church at 10:30. And not just any ole bowling, but candlepin bowling. Yeah, I'd never heard of it either. Until we moved to Boston. And I'd never seen it. Until Saturday at 10:30am. It has the same general idea as bowling - roll ball at pins and topple as many as possible - but it's pretty different. First, the balls are 2.5lbs and about the size of a cantaloupe. And then, the pins aren't the curvaceous pins at your local AMF, but just about straight, thin cylinders. And you get to roll the ball 3 times a turn. And don't even get me started on the scoring which was like regular bowling but not.




The place we went, Saccos Bowl Haven, is a pretty cool place, old-school for-sure. You can tell Micah and I were a little enamored with the place and its photo potential. We played 2 games with Dan and Kristin. Kristin won, beating husband Dan along with the rest of us (they'd played once before). I came in last by a long shot in my first day of candlepin. And I almost came in last out of the entire group, were it not for one guy getting a 31 to my 33. Not even the 'loser' prize for me.



12:30 - Next on the list was a quick errand which turned into a long one. Target, no surprise there, but we did pick up some new stocking holders (that don't crash to the ground Christmas eve when the stockings are filled) and some candles for our windows. 1:00 - We headed home and watched some Carolina basketball while addressing Christmas cards. The Heels lost, but came back from 19 down to make it a 2-point game. Oh well.
3:30 - On to our third (or is it fourth) event of the day...SEC football championships. We headed over to Carey and Lila's place in the south end to see the Crimson Tide take on the Gators. We chose sides, we snacked on (amazing) queso and guacamole and watched a rather boring game. It wasn't really close. Not sure what happened to good ole Tebow and his team, but they lost which put Alabama in the national championship.

8:00 - After that, it was southward to JP and Erin's place for a "Trim the Tree" party. They are newlyweds and don't have ornaments of their own, so they thought they'd throw a shindig and get people to bring them some in exchange for food, booze and good company. I thought it was a cool idea. We met new people, saw a few people from work, ate entirely too many mini quiches and veggie dumplings, had some tasty pomegranate punch and helped them decorate the tree.





Meanwhile, outside, this was starting up.

Snow snow snow! My first of the season (I was away for the freak storm in October). So excited that we got some snow :)

Sunday AM: