We went to dinner at Tavolo with Alex tonight. They have these awesome lights in one section of the dining room. It casts super awesome shadows on the walls and ceiling – not that you can tell from this photo.

Lower Mills

Our lease at the Chocolate Factoy is up soon and we’ll be moving. I’m really really hoping we can find something new in the area, because there are a million things I will miss when we move away. Among them: the gorgeous views along the bike path when running/walking, getting frappes from The Ice Creamsmith, browsing through Streamline Antiques with a super tasty iced mocha from Flat Black, watching the Neponset River every morning/evening when I cross the bridge to the trolley stop, waiting for the single headlight of the adorable (and orange!) trolleys, chatting with the owners at Esprit du Vin while they recommend cheese and wine for fondue… I swear that’s a partial list, even if it seems lengthy.

10 on Tuesday

1. I voted today! Yay for civic duties! I will now anxiously await election results.

2. I’ve had a bit of a sweet tooth lately, which is not usually my thing. Last night I made hot cocoa from scratch (with choco chips, not cocoa powder, because that’s what I had) and tonight I tried a recipe for chocolate mug cake that was halfway between this one and this one…but with no cocoa powder I threw in some instant coffee and lots of choco chips to give it flavor. Pete said “pretty good” and sounded very surprised. All of the choco chips sank to the bottom, but that’s okay – they end up on top when you dump the cake out of the mug. It would be much better with some vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, but it’ll get the job done on it’s own! ;)

3. The long weekend was awesome! There was a hair cut, lots of crocheting, Avatar, lots of pajama wearing, and enough working out to make me incredibly sore today. Did I mention there was a lot of pajama wearing and relaxing?

4. The working out? Yeah…that hurts. I came home to an empty house on Sunday and my first mission was to put on a workout video and work on getting myself into shape (isn’t everyone doing that this month?). I should point out now that I’m barely coordinated enough to follow these types of videos, and that we don’t have a ton of space here in our living room. I’m sure it would be amusing if anyone had witnessed it. At some point about 10 minutes into the video, Pete texted me saying that Hea Yon wanted me to come over and save her from being the only female at her house…and I texted him back that I thought I was dying. I actually felt okay when I first finished – I had definitely gotten in a workout, but I didn’t hurt like I thought I would. And then I took a shower. And I, honest to God, was pretty sure Pete would come home and find me sleeping on the couch because my legs had stopped working and I couldn’t get upstairs to bed. Clearly, the working out was a success!

5. It was so much a success that I did it again on Monday! I’d been in pajamas all day and it was after 4pm. Pete was going downstairs to hop on a treadmill, and I thought to myself that perhaps half an hour on the elliptical would help with this soreness situation – a little warming up and stretching and moving to help my muscles from getting too much more stiff and sore. I took the elevator back up to our apartment. And then took a shower. And then CRIED. Because people, sitting down? HURT. Standing up again? HURT. Going to the bathroom? EXTRA HURT. Yeah. I think that maybe taking a day off would have been a better solution to my soreness problem.

6. Today, I took the day off. There will be some stretching before bed, as there has been throughout the day. And hopefully, tomorrow I will be able to go to the bathroom without whimpering in pain every time I get on/off of the toilet. (Was that more than you guys wanted to know? It’s about pain in my quads/hamstrings, it’s really not that gross.)

7. Oh, let’s talk about Avatar quickly! It was a) too long, b) an eh story, and c) beautiful and technically amazing. Also, we were smart enough to buy tickets online to be sure we got them, but not smart enough to get to the theater early and ensure we didn’t end up in that front, flat section of seats. I think we all had stiff necks Saturday night. Oops! But glad I saw it in the theaters, the 3D was pretty awesome.

8. I do enjoy the new spate of 3D/3D Imax movies coming out…but I kind of hope it doesn’t turn into the norm. Is that weird? I can’t really explain why I feel that way, but I do.

9. I was very excited to get a belated Christmas gift today…that was a gift certificate to Exhale Spa! What?! I know! I’m so in love with that place it’s ridiculous. I’m currently stalking the weather forecast and waiting for the next freezing cold spell, which is exactly when I will make an appointment for a massage there, get myself all relaxed (thanks to Risa, who is a seriously amazing massage therapist), and then sit in the steam room until I’m so warm and happy that going back out into the freezing cold won’t even faze me! I can’t wait!

10. On the other hand, I could really do without another freezing cold spell…those 40 degree days over the weekend really made me happy. I didn’t need a hat! Or mittens! My scarf was only wrapped around me once! Is it too early to say that I can’t wait for the spring?

10 on Tuesday

1. First, please ignore the spots flying through the sky in the photo. I need to clean my lens. And/or have my sensor cleaned. Probably and. Regardless, that was the sun coming up this morning when I was on my way to work.

2. I was happy to discover Sunday night that we could now get into the fitness center that was put in on the first floor of our apartment building! I saw someone on one of the treadmills when I was on my way in, but hadn’t heard anything from the management company about it. I needed to do laundry last night and figured I’d try my key and if it worked I’d use the bike while I waited for the washer to finish up…and it did, woohoo! We got a notice today that Friday is the “grand opening” of the fitness center, but I decided to go ahead and use it again after work today rather than waiting for the “grand opening”. Yay for free access to cardio machines!

3. Anyone know why my left foot falls asleep when I use the bike in the fitness center? I’m thinking I’ll be switching to the elliptical or treadmill in the future (booo – harder to read while I’m on those!). Pretty sure having my foot fall asleep while exercising is not a good thing.

4. It’s getting C-O-L-D around here! It’s been cold enough for long enough that the river is starting to freeze over – there are even huge chunks of ice in part of the “rapids”, which is when you know it’s bad. I love seeing that river every time I go to/from the trolley, but I like it a little less with it’s got tons of ice all over and is reminding me exactly how cold it is outside!

5. We took the kitties to the vet on Saturday! Time to put Champ on a diet – she weighed in at 13.6 lbs! Remember when when found her a year and a half ago? When she weighed ONE POUND? Not anymore! On the other hand, Barley came in just over 10 and doesn’t need to diet…but he’ll be doing it anyway, because she steals his food if we aren’t policing them, so we’ll have to feed them the same thing. The good news is that aside from weight, everyone is doing okay. The bad news is that the vet recommended surgery to remove some of Champs extra toes (she’s got 6 toes on each paw. Our little mutant!) as the claws are growing around in a circle – almost like a ram’s horns do – and cutting/irritating her little paws. If she weren’t such a brat and would let us hold her we could cut them ourselves and she would be fine…but someone can’t stand being held so she may end up with surgery instead. Right after one of us gets a part time job to pay for it. You’d think with that extra toe/almost opposable thumb she could get out there and earn the money herself!

6. If you think I’m joking about Champ not liking to be held, trust me, we’ve tried! The record is 8 Mississippi. As in you can pick her up and hold her while you count, and by 8 Mississippi she will have her claws fully out and be digging them into your chest/stomach/neck while she launches herself out of your arms with every ounce of strength that she has.

7. It’s possible that I’ve done nothing in my free time but read since…sometime on Saturday, I believe. I borrowed book three of the Twilight series (Eclipse) from Alannah and book four (Breaking Dawn) from Emily, so I’m catching up. Well, finishing up. Rather quickly!

8. As much as I’ve been reading lately, Pete has been playing Assassin’s Creed 2. This has led to a number of occasions where I was pretty sure we were going to be replacing an XBox controller, because as it turns out someone has a little problem with controlling his temper when the game isn’t doing what he wants it to. It doesn’t help when he’s playing Assassin’s Creed in between football games (well…the first quarter of football games) where his favorite teams are getting their butts kicked. Fun times at our house last Sunday!

9. Speaking of which, who’s counting down until the Super Bowl?! I am! Or rather, counting down to the day after the Super Bowl.

10. Did I mention that I’m having trouble putting down Breaking Dawn? I think it’s time to snuggle up with a blanket, some tea, and Bella, Edward, and Jacob! Particularly Jacob.


another rainy trolley ride.