Friday, October 22, 2010

going, going, back, back...

thats right folks, i'm leaving on a jet plane tomorrow! can't wait to see my in-laws!

we have lots of fun things planned for next week - trip to yosemite, trip to sacramento, trip to gilroy (the garlic capital of the world, also home to the biggest outlet mall i have ever seen!), and the last day spent in san fran with a visit to alcatraz! woohoo!

Windmills in CA

with any luck, we will be successful at surprising my father-in-law tomorrow night! can't wait!

see y'all in a week!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

just "hanging" around

I'm just a Devil Dog... "hanging" around

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Sad State of American Politics as Told by Brett Favre's Affair Attempt

New Rule: If a Woman Rejects Your First Dozen Advances, Don't Send Her a Picture of Your Penis
By Bill Maher

New Rule: If a woman rejects your first dozen advances, don't up the ante by sending her a picture of your penis. This week, we found out that Vikings quarterback Brett Favre allegedly tried to get with a young woman by sending her MySpace messages, voicemails, and notes through a friend, and when none of that worked, and it was third and long -- though, not as long as most of us would have imagined -- he decided to throw the Hail Mary and sext her pictures of Little Brett to close the deal. Brett, I get it: Your dictionary doesn't include the word "quit" or "retire" or "married" but you've got to at least understand "punt." You know the worst part about having sex with Brett Favre? He keeps saying he's finished, and then he comes back to drag it out for another year.

To me, this story isn't about sports or sex or how necessary caller ID is -- it's about how pathetic and clueless white American males have become. Because the kind of guy who thinks there are women out there who just, cold, want to see your cock, is the same kind of guy who thinks Sarah Palin is swell and tax cuts pay for themselves. I will explain that connection further, but first let's just dwell for one more moment on how stupid it is to forget that in 2010 when you text someone a picture of your genitals, you're not just sending it to that person, but to every person she has in her contacts... and then everyone on the planet who has access to the Internet. Somewhere right now there's a tribesman in Samoa thinking, "Brett Favre is texting a picture of his dick to a woman? That shit never works."

And he's right -- no woman in the history of mankind has ever wanted to see a picture of a penis. Go back to the earliest cave paintings. The very first one is of a cock, and after that they're all antelopes and sunrises. But for some reason men persist. Why? Because men have always been in charge, especially white men. Brett Favre is like a lot of white males: he's owned the world for so long, he's going a little crazy now that he doesn't. Also, like many white men across the country, he lost his job to a Mexican, (i.e. Jets Quarterback Mark Sanchez).

If Brett Favre's penis could talk, what would it say? Well, other than, "No photos please," I think it would say, "I'm not a witch. I'm you." Because for hundreds of years white penises were America. White penises founded America, they made the rules and they called the shots in the workplace, in the home, and at the ballot box. But now the unthinkable is happening. White penises are becoming the minority: 2010 was the first year in which more minority babies were born in the U.S. than white babies. This is what conservatives are really upset about -- that the president is black, and the best golfer is black, and the Secretary of State is a woman, and suddenly this country is way off track and needs some serious 'restoring.' If penises could cry -- and I believe they can -- then white penises are crying all over America.

And that's where this crew comes in; Sarah Palin, Christine O'Donnell, Michele Bachmann; the lovely MILFs of the new right. And their little secret is that their popularity comes exclusively from white men. Look at the polling: minorities hate them, women hate them -- only white men like them. I'm no psychiatrist, but I do own a couch, and my theory is that these women represent something those men miss dearly: the traditional, idiot housewife. Writing on your hand is sheer Lucy. If an election between Obama and Sarah Palin were held today, and only white men could vote, Sarah Palin would be president. Did you know that in 1788, when there were four million people in America, only 39,000 of them -- the richest white men -- got to vote? That doesn't sound good to you? Well, what if I threw in a picture of my cock? Which brings me back to Brett Favre, and I think it's worth noting that in one of the alleged photos of him, he's pleasuring himself on a bed while wearing Crocs. And if you think about it, is there any better metaphor for the sad state of America today than an over-the-hill white guy lazily masturbating in plastic shoes?

I think the last two sentences are really my favorite part of the whole piece! HAHA! Enjoy!

really excited!

hello my friends!

i'm really excited about next week, but i can't tell you just yet why.  we are going on a secret mission!  more details to come, but thats all i can say for right now.

on another note, any of my regular readers (not that i post regularly, so i guess this is for my irregular readers), post a comment below introducing yourselves if you feel so inclined.

Also, enjoy these pictures of my nieces and nephew... they are super adorable, don't you think?

Jaiden at our CA wedding last year

Madison on her 4th bday with the apron we sent her

Olive getting her mind blown on her 1st car ride facing forward

Rise with lots of Xmas presents!

Thats all folks!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Words I Like to Use In Place of Real Words...

These are used mostly in typing although sometimes in conversation. not all of these are from me, most are things my friends and I have come up with at some point during our college days:

meetoo - for me too. I think the double o needs a double e
awky - awkward, used to describe a situation
"sitch" - situation i.e. "so let me tell you about this awky sitch from last weekend"
obvi - obviously i.e. "obvi I am too lazy to say the whole word"

My grandmother is also famous for making up words and probably has her own dictionary, but here are two of my favorites:

texmex - text message "just send me a texmex about what time you are coming over"
warbaums/warmart - walbaums (the grocery store), walmart

Feel free to comment and add your own...

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Unrealistic Expectations

Why is it that I think its ok to not write an entry in my blog for a month, but I expect my friends to update their blogs and sites every day?  Here's a little snippet of what happens pretty much every morning... I log into my computer and discover that said friends don't have an update.

I immediately get mad, like "Don't they know I need something to do all day? Because clearly I can't be expected to work for 8 hours straight.  What is my employer thinking? What is this, a concentration camp?  Its bad enough I gotta be here all day, when I could be sitting on my couch petting my dog, but to actually have to do something productive? Gimme a break... Ok did anyone post anything yet?"

Then upon discovering that, alas, there are no new posts, I frustratedly check for the 4th time that hour (surprise, surprise, nothing new on there either!) and procede to throw my mouse and walk to the bathroom in a huff. As soon as I get back, the cycle starts over again.  Thankfully, Dell makes some pretty robust mice (mouses? mices? moose?). 

Disclaimer: some or all of this story may or may not be true or false

Monday, October 11, 2010

I like to oat, oat, oat...

Ok, so I feel like for the past 2 years I have been saying, I'm going to lose that weight I put on because of my neck injury... but I am doing very little about it. Right before our wedding, I was crazy about maintaining so that I could at least fit into my wedding dress.  Now, not so much. I mean, the couch looks way more comfy that putting on sweats and trudging around on the hills of westlake.  At any rate, I was talking to my aunt that has MS this weekend and she gave me a snack tip.  Having MS, she can't do any excercise, sometimes she can barely walk, so she has to control her weight by diet.  She said that about an hour before dinner, or on my way home from work eat a snack bag (I'll outline what goes in it below) and drink a big glass of water, then cut out carbs with your dinner:

2 Wasa crackers broken up, 4-5 dried apricots, a small handful of Crasins and 2 squares of dark chocolate

So, I'm giving it a whirl today. The fiber of the Wasa crackers is supposed to help fill you up so that you don't eat as much with your dinner and also act as the carbohydrate that you would get with your meal normally. As someone who loves rice, this may end up dissapointing because I won't be able to have that with my meals anymore, but losing weight seems like a priority right now.  So bye bye rice, hello wasa trail mix. Wish me luck!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Something you may not know about me: I have dreams of being a published author...

... except I'm an engineering, not an english major. I mean, gosh darn it, people are lucky I can tie my own shoes, forget about abstract thinking! I can't find a good tone and I don't have the patience to stick with one topic for more than a page. Be that as it may, here is a little blurb I wrote sometime in the past 2 years:

I never thought I’d be 24 with no boyfriend, living at home with my parents… Private college dealt a blow to my disposable income, about a mortgage worth… When you end school with a grand total of $80,000 it can really cut your money situation… that and the fact that I am and always have been a spender… 5 credit cards and 14k later, I’m feeling a little akin to Rebekka Bloomwood. But instead of having a closet full of designer duds, I have a Helly Hanson jacket, 7 Kate Spades and about 40 extra pounds on me… What can I say, I like fine foods and wine! So, instead of having my 40k a year to spend smart on a house or an apartment, I’m putting $1300/month to bills, living with the ‘rents, and going out for drinks and dinner about 4 times a week… or as often as I can convince my parents to dog-sit for me.

Like most graduating seniors, I had a rosy view of what life after college would be like. I’ll move home for a few months, maybe a year to “get my bearings in the real world.” I’ll even get a dog, you know, to keep me company and take to the park to meet cute guys and go on lots of dates!

Reality sets in quick. I hadn’t even graduated yet and I had already picked out a puppy on A quick ok from my parents and 3 weeks before graduation, my little bundle of fur was on his way from Lafayette, LA! Of course, I could only visit on the weekends because I was finishing up school, so my parents got the early morning potty chore, the coming home at lunch potty chore, the after work potty chore and the before bed potty chore… not to mention the feeding and walking.

But, finally, I was home for good. Accustomed to spending my last 5 years my way, having this 25 pound terror in my life was quite a change. I had to get up at 5am for the 1st potty walk of the day as well as breakfast. Then there was about 12 hours of “don’t do that, don't eat that, what are you doing?” chasing around the house… with a few more walks and a nap in there somewhere. It was practically a blessing to start work after 2 months of that!

I never thought I’d be working in a cubical… all day, every day! They call it the daily grind, because that’s what it does, grinds you down. I sit in my 10 square feet of space everyday working on my computer hoping for a production problem so I can run downstairs and be a hero. Anything to get me away from this desk and the same project day in, day out. Let me tell you folks, engineering is not all its cracked up to be… Its really a lot less glamorous than they tell you. In college, I thought I’d be designing something wonderful, something that would change people’s lives, but what I do is design lights for corporate jets. While it sounds cool, no rich guy’s going to care that I designed their landing light… they probably don’t even know there is a light you are supposed to have on when you land, they clearly have people for that, right? So I chug along, everyday, with my lights and a million pieces of paper for the FAA. Does anyone keep track of what THEY are doing? I mean, you can write yourself in circles before you get approval from them! I think we need a watchdog to monitor their requirement list… use some common sense people. We are making lights here, not engines… we aren’t a mission critical item. If your wing rips off, I got news for you, you aren’t going to be making sure you have proper lighting… you’re going to be looking for your parachute and praying!

So there you have it... that was the place I was in right after I met my husband. I'm in a different place now, but I still have the attention span of a gnat and can't seem to get it down on paper.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

13 Superstitions...

Now you'll know a little background on why we do the silly things we do!

1. Don't Walk Under a Ladder: After researching this superstition for a year at the British Library in London, Oliver says the belief's most-cited origin points to "a ladder forming a triangle with the wall and the ground, suggesting the Holy Trinity." Apparently, walking through that triangle would show disrespect to the Trinity and therefore bring bad luck. Another possible (and much simpler) origin: Where there's a ladder, there's usually someone working on top and walking underneath could lead to all sorts of cartoonish accidents, like a hammer falling on someone's head.

2. Black Cats Bring Bad Luck: Oliver says black cats are notoriously linked to witchcraft, which is why some people think they're unlucky. However, there are two sides to this one. Allegedly, if a cat crosses your path it's considered unlucky, but if a cat walks toward you, it's a good omen. Should the first scenario happen, though, Oliver says the "only way to avert the back luck is to spit."

3. Never Light Three Cigarettes With the Same Match: This superstition originated in military circles and dates back to those long nights in the trenches during World War I. "If three soldiers smoked at once, enemy snipers would easily detect them," says Oliver. "If they used the same match to light all three cigarettes, snipers would notice the match burning after the first one and would have enough time to load guns, aim and fire at the unlucky third smoker."

4. Carrots Are Good for Your Eyesight: Though some studies have shown that the vitamin A in carrots is good for the eyes, the vegetable alone isn't enough to spark 20/20 vision. Oliver says this old wives' tale -- or smart attempt by parents to get their children to eat their veggies -- originated as a myth during World War II. "That's when British pilots where rumored to be eating enormous amounts of carrots to see from high altitudes and in the dark. The rumor was widely spread to throw the public off from the fact that radar had been invented and was being used against the enemy," he says.

5. Cross Your Fingers: If you look hard enough, you can see this superstition has religious roots. Oliver says that crossing your fingers is a type of holy protection because the two overlapping fingers form a "slanted cross." This "good luck" ritual varies around the globe -- in Switzerland, people fold their thumbs in and wrap their other fingers around them instead of the standard index-and-middle-finger combination.

6. Don't Open an Umbrella in The House: The origins of this belief are simple -- what's designed for the outdoors should remain outside. While today's version of the old umbrella superstition is said to simply bring "bad luck," Oliver says there used to be a much darker cloud hanging over the belief in ancient times. "In earlier versions, opening an umbrella inside was an omen of death," he explains.

7. Always Have Something in the Oven: This old Jewish superstition could be considered "family friendly." Supposedly, leaving an oven empty will cause one's family to go hungry in the future. To avoid famine, it's enough to leave a baking sheet or a pan in the oven at all times as a precaution. "This belief is linked to ancient rituals in which food was left for household gods in order to ensure protection of the family," Oliver explains.

8. Wear Underwear Inside Out: When having a bad day, superstition suggests that turning your underwear inside out can make it all better. Oliver isn't quite sure where this odd belief came from, but we wouldn't be surprised if originated on a wild college campus somewhere, perhaps during a post-party "walk of shame."

9. Kiss a Mustachioed Man, End Up a Spinster: There are more superstitions revolving around marriage than we can count, and that includes "kissing a dark-skinned man at a wedding." If a woman does this, she'll supposedly get a marriage proposal shortly thereafter. But watch who you're smooching, ladies. If a woman kisses a man with a mustache and finds a stray hair on her lip after, she's destined to be a spinster.

10. Don't Praise Babies in China: If you're in China and you come across an adorable newborn baby, do not under any circumstances compliment the little one. In China, it's considered "unlucky" to praise babies because it "attracts the attention of ghosts and demons." Instead, Oliver says it's customary to "talk badly about babies" to keep evil entities away. Rather than getting upset, parents are told to convert those insults into praise quietly in their heads.

11. Don't Chew Gum at Night in Turkey: Even if your breath stinks, popping in a stick of gum after dinner in Turkey is a bad idea. "It's thought that if you're chewing gum at night in Turkey, you're actually chewing the flesh of the dead," says Oliver. Gross.

12. Lucky Four-Leaf Clovers: Because of how scarce four-leaf clovers really are, just finding one in a field is lucky in and of itself. Oliver says the rare leaf represents everything one could possibly desire in life: "wealth, fame, love and health."

Unlucky 13. The number 13 -- and Friday the 13th -- are considered unfortunate in many places, and the reasons go back to the Bible. Remember, Jesus had 13 disciples until one of them -- Judas -- betrayed him.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

New Rule...

Great excerpt from Bill Maher (


New Rule: Rich People Who Complain About Being Vilified Should Be Vilified
New Rule: The next rich person who publicly complains about being vilified by the Obama administration must be publicly vilified by the Obama administration. It's so hard for one person to tell another person what constitutes being "rich", or what tax rate is "too much." But I've done some math that indicates that, considering the hole this country is in, if you are earning more than a million dollars a year and are complaining about a 3.6% tax increase, then you are by definition a greedy asshole.

And let's be clear: that's 3.6% only on income above 250 grand -- your first 250, that's still on the house. Now, this week we got some horrible news: that one in seven Americans are now living below the poverty line. But I want to point you to an American who is truly suffering: Ben Stein. You know Ben Stein, the guy who got rich because when he talks it sounds so boring it's actually funny. He had a game show on Comedy Central, does eye drop commercials, doesn't believe in evolution? Yeah, that asshole. I kid Ben -- so, the other day Ben wrote an article about his struggle. His struggle as a wealthy person facing the prospect of a slightly higher marginal tax rate. Specifically, Ben said that when he was finished paying taxes and his agents, he was left with only 35 cents for every dollar he earned. Which is shocking, Ben Stein has an agent? I didn't know Broadway Danny Rose was still working.

Ben whines in his article about how he's worked for every dollar he has -- if by work you mean saying the word "Bueller" in a movie 25 years ago. Which doesn't bother me in the slightest, it's just that at a time when people in America are desperate and you're raking in the bucks promoting some sleazy Free Credit Score dot-com... maybe you shouldn't be asking us for sympathy. Instead, you should be down on your knees thanking God and/or Ronald Reagan that you were lucky enough to be born in a country where a useless schmuck who contributes absolutely nothing to society can somehow manage to find himself in the top marginal tax bracket.

And you're welcome to come on the show anytime.

Now I can hear you out there saying, "Come on Bill, don't be so hard on Ben Stein, he does a lot of voiceover work, and that's hard work." Ok, it's true, Ben is hardly the only rich person these days crying like a baby who's fallen off his bouncy seat. Last week Mayor Bloomberg of New York complained that all his wealthy friends are very upset with mean ol' President Poopy-Pants: He said they all say the same thing: "I knew I was going to have to pay more taxes. But I didn't expect to be vilified." Poor billionaires -- they just can't catch a break.

First off, far from being vilified, we bailed you out -- you mean we were supposed to give you all that money and kiss your ass, too? That's Hollywood you're thinking of. FDR, he knew how to vilify; this guy, not so much. And second, you should have been vilified -- because you're the vill-ains! I'm sure a lot of you are very nice people. And I'm sure a lot of you are jerks. In other words, you're people. But you are the villains. Who do you think outsourced all the jobs, destroyed the unions, and replaced workers with desperate immigrants and teenagers in China. Joe the Plumber?

And right now, while we run trillion dollar deficits, Republicans are holding America hostage to the cause of preserving the Bush tax cuts that benefit the wealthiest 1% of people, many of them dead. They say that we need to keep taxes on the rich low because they're the job creators. They're not. They're much more likely to save money through mergers and outsourcing and cheap immigrant labor, and pass the unemployment along to you.

Americans think rich people must be brilliant; no -- just ruthless. Meg Whitman is running for Governor out here, and her claim to fame is, she started e-Bay. Yes, Meg tapped into the Zeitgeist, the zeitgeist being the desperate need of millions of Americans to scrape a few dollars together by selling the useless crap in their garage. What is e-Bay but a big cyber lawn sale that you can visit without putting your clothes on?

Another of my favorites, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann said, "I don't know where they're going to get all this money, because we're running out of rich people in this country." Actually, we have more billionaires here in the U.S. than all the other countries in the top ten combined, and their wealth grew 27% in the last year. Did yours? Truth is, there are only two things that the United States is not running out of: Rich people and bullshit. Here's the truth: When you raise taxes slightly on the wealthy, it obviously doesn't destroy the economy -- we know this, because we just did it -- remember the '90's? It wasn't that long ago. You were probably listening to grunge music, or dabbling in witchcraft. Clinton moved the top marginal rate from 36 to 39% -- and far from tanking, the economy did so well he had time to get his dick washed.

Even 39% isn't high by historical standards. Under Eisenhower, the top tax rate was 91%. Under Nixon, it was 70%. Obama just wants to kick it back to 39 -- just three more points for the very rich. Not back to 91, or 70. Three points. And they go insane. Steve Forbes said that Obama, quote "believes from his inner core that people... above a certain income have more than they should have and that many probably have gotten it from ill-gotten ways." Which they have. Steve Forbes, of course, came by his fortune honestly: he inherited it from his gay egg-collecting, Elizabeth Taylor fag-hagging father, who inherited it from his father. Of course then they moan about the inheritance tax, how the government took 55% percent when Daddy died -- which means you still got 45% for doing nothing more than starting out life as your father's pecker-snot.

We don't hate rich people, but have a little humility about how you got it and stop complaining. Maybe the worst whiner of all: Stephen Schwarzman, #69 on Forbes' list of richest Americans, compared Obama's tax hike to "when Hitler invaded Poland in 1939." Wow. If Obama were Hitler, Mr. Schwarzman, I think your tax rate would be the least of your worries.

Monday, September 27, 2010

oh airline industry, how you don't ever make sense!

Recently I took a little trip and while I was on the plane, I was served a complementary beverage in this little glass. I was also given this napkin.  Now, as I was sitting drinking my free water (water should be free regardless, right?), I got to thinking...

How much money do you think US Airways could save in a year by not having custom molded plastic cups and custom printed napkins?  I'm serious here people! Give me an answer!

Maybe they could stop charging for your 1st checked bag if this stuff was eliminated?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

hate is a strong word...

you know what i dislike very greatly... mouth breathers!  no, i'm not saying i hate humans and to be my friend you have to breathe out of gills.  you know what i'm talking about, the people that are sitting next to you that are working on something and they temporarily forget that they have a nose to breathe out of.  "huuuuuuuhhhhhh huuuuuuuuuuhhhhhh".  i mean come on, you aren't 5 anymore, you don't need all of your body's energy to go to concentrating on cutting that star shape out of construction paper!! believe it or not people, you can multi task! like, i don't know, swallowing and walking?  i don't think this is too much to ask, we are all adults here.

maybe this is a little harsh, but can we just come to a compromise that you will try to breathe out of your nose every once in a while so i don't feel like the grim reaper is behind me and breathing down my neck?  thats all i ask. i'll try not to chew like a horse at lunch. k, thanks!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Why M?

Not that anyone has asked, but I guess in case you are wondering, what is the meaning of M to me?

  • My first name starts with M
  • My last name starts with M
  • My maiden name starts with M
  • My middle name starts with M
  • I am a Mechanical engineer
  • I live in Middletown
  • My mom and dad are both M names
  • I have 3 aunts with M first names and middle names
  • I have 2 cousins with M first names
  • My mom's maiden name starts with M
  • I married a Marine

So you can see, the letter M has always been a constant in my life. I think it is the letter that I best identify with and that's why I chose it.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

CT Wine Festival - This WEEKEND!!!!

Hey all you wine-o's out there!  The CT wine fest is this weekend at the Goshen Fairgrounds.  Go to for more details.

Tickets are $25 at the door (unless you are the DD for the day, $10, which means no drinking for you).  You get a commemorative wine glass and a tote bag.... OHHHH a TOTE BAG! haha yes, I know, kinda silly!

If you can manage to get to a vineyard in the state today or tomorrow to buy tickets, they are only $20 each, so plan ahead if you are going! We will most likely be there so look for us! I will be the one taking pictures like a tourist!


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Sonic VIP Opening in Wallingford, CT!!!!!

Some pics of our trip to the soft opening of Sonic this evening! It was amazing! Fun fact: Sonic was where we had our first date 2 years ago! Also, sorry for the crappy quality, I took these on my phone because we didn't have our camera in my purse.

sonic in wallingford


super excited!

we are special!



drive thru

holy crap!

sonic bliss

patio area

the damage

Monday, July 12, 2010

Sharpe Hill Vineyards, Pomfret, CT - 06/25/2010

This vineyard probably had the best setting of the day, but my least favorite wines of the day.

It definately had the feel of stepping back in time a bit with the rustic barns and fences on the property.

When you walk into the tasting room, its quite charming.  There is a room off of the reception area that is cute and it possibly used for tastings when the weather is not nice out.

French country much?

Really cool sink in the bathroom

Tastings are $5 for 5 wines and a glass or $10 for all the wines and a glass. We paid $5 each and picked different wines from each other so we got to taste 10 out of 11 wines.

the vines

We were sent outside to do our tasting.  There is an area where you can eat and they also have chairs set up on the lawn for you to enjoy a bottle of wine and just relax.

restaurant/eating area

chill out area

This is where we did our tasting, which was really awkward. There was no place to put a glass on or lean and relax:

And on to the wines (note, most of them didn't have a pleasant smell):

Ballet of Angels - sweet finish, little grapefruity. I have seen this bottle in many package stores in CT, but I had no idea that it was a Sharpe Hill wine

American Chardonnay 2008 - really oaky finish and very dry

Cuvee Ammi Philips 2007 - dry but slightly oaked

Vineyard Reserve Chardonnay 2008 - almost tastes like city water, very flinty

Dry Riesling 2008 - almost has a pear finish

Dry Summer Rose - very dry, slight strawberry finish

Red Seraph - full bodied and juicy

Cabernet Franc 2007 - really dry and tanin taste

St. Croix 2006 - very buttery finish, which I had never experienced in a red

Pontefract 2006 - sweet and dry with a slight spice

Personally, there wasn't a single wine I would buy from here.  Ballet of Angels is supposed to be their most popular wine and it definately isn't worth the hype.  I would almost suggest skipping this vineyard all together, unless you are trying to tour all of them like we are.  I'll leave you with a picture of some more of their vines across the street from the tasting room and restaurant.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Taylor Brooke Winery, Woodstock, CT - 06/25/2010

This is on a hill on the side of the road. They don't have a lot of room to grow, but they make a surprising number of wines for what they do.

They are the only vineyard in CT that is growing and producing the Traminette grape.  It was also the 6th anniversary of being open to the public the day we went.  So Happy Anniversary, Taylor Brooke!

All the labels on their bottles are from local artist Tom Menard and they are all pictures of the town the vineyard is located in, Woodstock, CT.

Their tasting room has recently undergone renovations to expand it.  Walking in we saw this flag

So I immediately knew this was my kind of place...

We got to chat with the owners for quite some time (Suggestion: do your tours on a friday, its a lot slower so you actually get to chat with the owners).  What began as a hobby turned into this business for them!  Awesome! Inspiration for the future!

Ok, the wines....

Woodstock Hill White - slightly effervescent, clean finish

Riesling - most rieslings made in CT are dry, much to my benefit.  it had a peachy finish

Traminette - like smelling a bouquet. slightly floral taste

St. Croix Rose - dry and smells like strawberries, which is strange because it is not made with any

Green Apple Riesling - has almost a cheese smell to it. was ok

Summer Peach - smells and tastes like eating a Georgia peach

Cabernet Franc - dry and clean

Woodstock Valley Red - on the dry side, smells and tastes oaky

Roseland Red - has some cherry on the finish

Late Harvest Riesling - a sweet riesling, definately got a hint of honey in the taste and smell

Chocolate Essence - almost like eating a chocolate cake with raspberry sauce

Tastings are 2 for free, 8 for $4, and all for $6.

And you can purchase a logo glass for $3. This one has the logo painted on, not etched like the majority, so I would be careful about using after the fact because you could lose the logo.

Friday, July 9, 2010

We Interrupt This Regularly Scheduled Program...

Ok, I know I've been writing about wine a lot lately, but I thought I would give you an update on the neighborly situation, seeing as there has been some recent activity.

On Saturday, we got a notice in our door from the complex managment saying that they have gotten some complaints and due to our dogs "Excessively Barking" we were in violation of our lease. They were asking that we keep our slider doors closed to help muffle the noise.  Now, I know my dogs aren't excessive barkers, they may bark for like 30 seconds a few times a day when they hear something or when the downstairs neighbors let their dogs out, so the hubby and I decided to do a little investigation.

We talked to our upstairs neighbors to find out if it was them that complained and to apologize if the dog barking was bothering them. They really are good upstairs neighbors so we would truely feel sorry if our dogs were pestering them.  Fortunately, it wasn't them and they said they rarely ever hear anything from our dogs except for an occasional bark at a normal time. So from this we deduced that it was our nemeses... the dreaded downstairs neighbors... (Cue the scary music) Duh Duh DUUUUHHHHHH!!!!!

Now, I'm not a strict rule follower, there are certain things I bend on. If you know me, you know I speed and I harbor dogs that are on the lam (haha).  Contrarily, I have a high level of morality on most things and that I expect others to follow the rules I do follow.  But usually, I go by the "live and let live" philosophy (you'll see where I'm going in a minute) because I would be a hypocrite otherwise... So imagine my surprise when I get cited for adhering to the lease because my dogs are barking, when the neighbors that complain do all of the following:
1. Allow their dogs to bark all day when they aren't home... and I'm not talking woof woof and done, I'm talking for about 5 hours straight of a bark every 5-10 seconds - Yeah I know, they probably aren't aware of it because they aren't there, but maybe they should think about the fact that their dogs probably aren't perfect and they should have a little bit of tolerance.
2. Let their dogs out to potty behind the apartment - Ok I know this sounds like I'm a wicked witch and all, but its in the lease and its a law that the dogs have to be on a leash at all times in public.
3. Don't pick up the solid waste that the dogs are leaving behind when they are off leash - again, in the lease and a law

We had also heard from management before that these people lived in another apartment in the complex and kept complaining about a dog they lived near and that is why they moved to the apartment they are in now... but boy did they pick the wrong neighbors to live under. I have a feeling that the other neighbors probably just took their complaints lying down, but we aren't that kind of people so we took action. 

Hubby went to the office when he got home on Monday and told management all of the above.  They let us know they didn't put the letter we had recieved in our file, they just put it in the door so the people downstairs wouldn't think they were being ignored. Management thanked him for letting them know about the off-leash and crap situation mainly because maintenance would end up being the ones who took care of all the crap behind the apartment if it continued.  So the downstairs neighbors are being cited for real! HAHAHA revenge is a dish best served cold!

The thing about it is, if they didn't complain and showed a little tolerance, we would never had said anything.  But don't try to get us in trouble for not really doing something wrong if you aren't doing everything right. They brought this on themselves.  We live in apartments, and it isn't realistic to expect silence 24 hours a day when you are 10 feet from your neighbors... and you have 2 dogs.  Hopefully they got a reality check and they will think twice next time.

That is all for now my lovelies! I will continue my reviews shortly, I promise.  I have been slacking lately and I apologize!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Cassidy Hill Vineyards, Coventry, CT - 06/25/2010

Look for this sign if you are coming from I-84

This vineyard all the way at the end of a road, but its actually quite quaint.  There is a barn on the property where they make the wine, a log cabinesque building for the tasting room, as well as the owners' house.

The building they use for tastings

You can wander among the vines or take a walk out to The Thinking Tree and sit on a bench underneath it surrounded by tall grass the blows in the breeze. It is a very peaceful setting.

Nice area for picnics


The Thinking Tree

Ok on to the wines!!!!

Tastings are $5.00 and you can buy an etched glass for an additional $3.00.  Since this is what we are doing instead of taking vacations, we resolved to buy the glasses if we had to.  The glass actually had a pretty nice shape.

Logo is inspired by the Thinking Tree

2009 Pinot Gris - This is actually my favorite type of white wine and Cassidy Hill did not dissapoint. It was everything a pinot gris should be, light, fruity, almost slightly citrusy, that feels effervescent on the tounge.  Consequently, this is the only bottle of wine we bought the whole day.

Winding Brook - It was oaky but a pleasant oaky.  A little fruity, not too sweet.

2009 Coventry White - Not overly sweet, citrusy notes

Jet's Red - Named after the vineyard dog, it had clove undertones and is made with blueberries, although I couldn't taste them.  The clove was a different touch than you normally see in reds.

They were also releasing a riesling the next day, but we didn't get to sample that.

Trying the Jet's Red

Also note: they usually have live music on Friday nights, so if you are in the area, stop by for a glass!