Friday, November 27, 2009

Relaxing and SUPER Productive.

This year, as with every year I've spent on the east coast, I traveled an hour north to Fort Lee, NJ, to spend Thanksgiving with my friend Sarah and her lovely family. I only stayed for the afternoon and evening on Thursday, as I had to return to feed and love my dear gato and my friend Laura's gata next door. That meant that this morning, I could sleep in as long as I wanted to and have the most leisurely day imaginable. sleep in, I mean toss and turn in bed while coughing my lungs out until 10am, and by leisurely...I mean...this:

My apartment was filthy. Messy, and pretty downright dirty, too. My goal for this weekend was to decorate for Christmas, while enjoying Christmas music. I couldn't do that in such a state. Armed with a latte, eggs-cheese-n-salsa, and still in pre-Thanksgiving pumpkin PJ bottoms, I pumped up the holiday tunes and markered up my whiteboard. Do the dishes. Check! Hang up pile of coats on the couch. Check! Put away shoes that accumulated underneath the dining room table. Check! Sweep! Mop! Scrub! Borrow Meg's vacuum because I have her keys because they're on Luc's keyring because I'm taking care of Luc's fish! Vacuum! Pile dirty laundry in middle of floor in preparation for the post-acquiring-of-quarters! Find cat toys in EVERY nook and cranny!

Wonder why cat has so many toys!
Big day! We started by cleaning...

Find cat zonked in unmade bed!
Tuckered out from cleaning the apartment.

Yes, it was incredible. I hate cleaning. Thus, I go for weeks and then REALLY CLEAN ALL AT ONCE AAAGH. That was finally finished, so I showered. At 4pm. Beautiful.

Next! I dug out my Christmas decorations. Replaced summery picture of siblings with snowy picture of siblings. Hung little stockings on Moroccan wrought-iron hooks. Decided to go out and buy...

My first very own Christmas tree!
My first TREE!!!

It is of course real. I believe in pine tree smell, sticky pine sap, and pine needles ground into carpet.

I used a steak knife to trim it:
Steak knives trim trees just fine.

We decorated and decorated and finally have this:
Isn't it CUTE?

I LOVE it. It makes the living room so warm and cozy:
Living room!

Here's the tiny topper:

Some ornaments:

My sleepy buddy:
So sleepy.

My festive fish:
Sonne even decorated his tank.

And my other project of the day, making two pounds of refried beans from scratch:
Cleaning, decorating...and refried bean making!

Ah yeah. Who has a freezer full of tastiness?? Me.

And now, we must go to sleep. In my post-Thanksgiving, Christmas snowmen PJ bottoms. Love and Merry Start-of-the-Christmas-Season!

...and he is DONE posing.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Busy busy busy

Fall arrived in Princeton and brought colorful leaves, busy conferences, and fabulous escapades. Sadly, the leaves have mostly fallen off the trees and the east is rather brown, but it was beautiful while it lasted!

...golden leaves...

...what more could we want?

Lake Carnegie is my fav.


Faraday even got to enjoy the brilliant outdoors:
Tryin' out the leash!

He continues to be my darling little buddy and is such good company! My life is much brighter with him in it. He walks all over me to wake me up to feed him, and sleeps on my chest if I ignore him long enough. He always greets me with a (often groggy) "prr!" when I come home. He loves to sleep on my lap when I'm knitting, reading, or watching a movie. He'll scratch my bookcase to get my attention when I'm too enthralled by my laptop...and he likes to hang out in the bathtub:
"Yes, your shampoo is still there."

He also loves to chill out while I wash dishes:
"Let's COOK!!"

Walking amongst leaves and playing with Faradude is quite relaxing. My life really isn't. What ELSE am I doing, you ask?

1. Performing at dance festivals:
We kept playing even when the music stopped!

2. RUNNING a lot:
The marathon is coming up so quickly! Today we ran 19 miles. Yes. NINETEEN. I'm sore and tired, but accomplished. We're hosting two fundraisers: the Frosty 5K in Princeton, and the virtual Coast-to-Coast 5k that ANYONE can do. SIGN UP!

3. Attending conferences:
I had posters in a conference at lab in October and APS at the beginning of November.
APS was in Atlanta, home of the Georgia Aquarium and the World of Coca-Cola. My usual buddies and I had plenty of fun at both:
TWO whale sharks

Love the Coke Bear

The best part of the Coke museum is the tasting floor. One can taste over 50 different kinds of pop (I MEAN SODA, EAST COASTERS, SODA)! One can drink AS MUCH as one WANTS! We indeed tried every kind, and had the biggest sugar high and then crash ever.
Taste the Coke!

4. Lots of other stuff, but we'll save that for another day. :)

Many more pictures can be found here, as usual.