Monthly Archives: February 2007

Weekend Fun

So this past weekend my sister Ali came to visit. We decided that we wanted to go to the MFA to see the Fashion Show exhibit, because it was almost over. We had some trouble finding parking around the MFA though, so after over 30 minutes of driving around Ian just dropped us off while he went to find a spot. He will tell you all about that :)

The exhibit was surprisingly interesting. Collections by Christian LaCroix, Dior, Chanel, Viktor & Rolf, Valentino and others were on display. It was fascinating to see the detail and workmanship that go into each piece. At these runway shows, you don’t always have an opportunity to see the pieces up close – so this was really neat. Of course, its haute couture, so its not like you are seeing clothes that an ordinary person would actually wear, but still, very fascinating to see how the designers can take a theme, or a certain look, and just go with it. Very Cool!

On Sunday, we drove Ali back to Spencer, where she prepared a nice Mediterranean dinner for us – salad, grilled tomatoes with mozzarella, prosciutto, rustic bread and a dish of lemon, garlic and olive oil pasta. It tasted great – especially since this was probably the first family dinner that Ali made. She finished the meal with some pears and strawberry shortcakes. Yum-O! :)

Valentine’s Snow Day

I woke up this morning and jumped out of bed (okay more of a roll) and quickly made my way to the window. My face was sullen as I threw the curtains open and saw only a light dusting.

Looks like there will be work today. I check my work email to confirm this, although a couple co-workers (that don’t live in Waltham) decided to work from home.

By the time Val and I were leaving for work there was more snow and the streets didn’t look great. We took it slow and it was fine. Soon enough I was at work.

Ian's Work Desk

It wasn’t a bad work day. My two meetings were canceled so I got some work done. The snow continued to come down, but it looked nice and I was warm inside.

Snow day at Brandeis Snow day at Brandeis

The funny thing about working at a university is the students. Many of them were bundled up for the weather with their hats and gloves and warm jackets. One student who walked by my window, however, was wearing a burger king crown!

Snow King

As you can see, we were up to a few inches of snow and it was still snowing (and hailing at times). Around 2:00 an announcement was made that the university would be closing at 3:30. Neat. So, I finished up what I was doing and headed home.

I understand it was snowing out. I try to drive carefully and I’m sure others do to. There’s a couple types of snow drivers:

  1. People who drive carefully
  2. People who think they’re driving carefully by traveling at about 2 mph
  3. People who think people who drive carefully are wimps and drive recklessly

Nobody drives normally. Here’s an example. We get to a red light. I want to go straight so I stay in the go straight lane and stop for the red light. On my left there’s a couple cars in the left turn lane. On my right (in the right turn only lane) a taxi speeds by me and takes the turn. Then a BMW comes speeding down the right turn lane, slows down a little, puts on his directional to turn LEFT, swerves in front of me, then stops in the middle of the intersection.

As BMW waits for the green he continues to inch up to make sure its difficult for pedestrians and traffic.

While we continue to have a red light the light turns green for LEFT turns only. One person in the lane turns left, then the other swerves in front of me. At this point the BMW runs the red light, then the person in the left turn lane follows suit. Then another person in the left turn lane goes straight at the red light!

People are insane!

We finally get back to our apartment, shovel the steps, and shuffle the cars around because right when we get home the landlord is coming to plow the driveway. At least I didn’t have to shovel the whole thing though.

Val and I decided to stay home and relax for Valenetine’s Day, especially with the snow out. We made veggie fajitas for dinner and then Val made some themed sugar cookies for dessert (yes, any cookie is a sugar cookie).

Valentine's Cookies Valentine's Cookies Valentine's Cookies



Val and I went to visit her family (her mom, dad & sister) in Spencer recently. It’s not that far away, but once you go west of Worcester, things get weird. For example, on Rt. 9 in Leicester we saw a person dancing on the sidewalk dressed as a Care Bear.

Care Bear

I have no idea why there was a Care Bear in Leicester. The only two businesses near the Care Bear was a place called the Candy Boutique and another called the Hair Force. So, who knows.

Once we made it to their house it was great — it smelled like cake. Val’s sister, Alison made a FunFetti cake (yum!). As usual, Ali stood out the most in the house. She looked like an anime character.

Ali Smedile

I thought it was a cool look, but it was confusing because she was wearing a Green Day zippered sweatshirt and Val has the same one. Crazy sisters. At least Val wasn’t wearing it at the same time.

We mostly hung out and ate, watched some TV. There was some WWII drama on. It wasn’t that good, but I think I was the only one that watched it. Occasionally Ali would ‘ooh’ at the TV because we all know how she wished she lived in black and white days…although she might not know how to make her hair stand out as much.

We’ll probably go see my family soon. My dad and sister still haven’t seen Val with glasses. Val likes being able to see better, but doesn’t like wearing glasses. We took a few pictures to post, but she didn’t like the way they looked. She’ll probably get made at me for posting this one of her wearing her new glasses, so don’t tell!

Val with fake glasses

Chris and Elly

Val’s brother Chris and his girlfriend Elly came over our apartment last night. We went out to eat for some food. We went to a Japanese/Korean/Thai restaurant called Asian Grill. I’ve never been out to eat there, but I think I’ve had take-out from there before. Val and I got some Korean noodle dish with beef and Pad Thai. Val’s brother and girlfriend were more into fish. Chris got a big bowl of raw fish on rice (eww). Elly’s food was cooked. It looked like a giant stone cauldron of soup with thick noodles and random sea creatures. It was massive. She seemed to enjoy it though.

Back at our apartment, Chris and Elly suggested that Chris leave his shoes outside. After he took them off I walked by them and realized why. I think we were all happy they stayed outside. As a token of my appreciation I Febreezed them when he wasn’t looking.

Febreezing Shoes

We spent most of the night playing on our computers. We had a good time.

Chris and Elly playing on laptops


Picture will be up later….

So, I finally decided to get glasses. Who hoo. I am not too excited about it. I never liked wearing even sunglasses, and I think my face is shaped funny for glasses. But anyway, I got them, and I can finally drive again now that I can read the signs. :)

Ring Size

So, yeah, it is still too big. In the picture below, the ring is the original size. When we were at the jewelry store to have it resized, I was a little concerned because my hands were cold, and I do notice a difference in the size of my fingers depending on the season. But when the lady tried to get a good size, I still felt that the size she chose was too large. “Um, this still feels very loose,” I said. “Oh no, that is just because your hands are cold right now. Once you warm up you will notice a difference.”

Well I still thought it was big. I wear rings all the time, and I prefer them to be tighter rather than looser. Anyway, so we got the ring back, and right away I knew it was too big. It probably needs to be a size smaller still.

I know it is too big, even for the winter, because just the other day, I was taking my jacket off, and as I pulled my arm out of the sleeve, the ring flew off my finger and into the closet. So I had to rummage through my shoes to find it. EEK!

So, if anyone knows where to get little ring inserts that make the ring smaller, let me know. I figure I will use that until the summer, and see if I can get a smaller size then. Because I really don’t want to lose my little sparkle!

Set the date? We’re only affianced!

One of the most popular questions is when is the wedding. I didn’t think that far ahead. I mainly wanted to give Val jewelry so we can call each other by a new name fiance/fiancĂ©e. That’s a weird thing in itself. I just did a Google search to get the right spelling of the word and apparently some guy says that the spelling depends on if you’re referring to a male or female. I then confirmed this with my source for all factual information.

Speaking of WikiPedia, they say the following:

An engagement is an agreement or promise to marry, and also refers to the time between proposal and marriage. During this period, a couple is said to be affianced, engaged to be married, or simply engaged. (citation)

So of course, I was curious on the pronunciation differences. I checked the Merriam-Webster dictionary, but they use the same wav file for both words. Shucks!

Anyways, to answer the question, I’ll say some time in 2008.

Ring Resized

Valerie wearing ring

Although I tried to get the ring to be the right size, I was pretty much way off. Serves me right for trying to measure using yarn. And the ring of hers I was trying to measure is one of those three intertwined rings in one…pretty tricky stuff! At least it was too big, so she was still able to put it on her finger.
Anyways, the warranty I purchased the ring with allows for it to be resized at no additional cost. So, soon after I gave Val the ring, she had to part with it. I joked that we’re un-engaged until she gets it back.

Great news though! The ring is back! It now fits her much better. Although, she’s contemplating if it should be tighter. She doesn’t want it to fall off. But, I don’t think she’s ready to part with it again yet.


Once I got the ring I was very anxious to share it with Val. The night I picked it up I was actually with Val. I made up some excuse about having a stomach ache and was able to sneak off. The ring was in my jacket pocket and I wanted to just give it to her on the spot! I managed to hold back to do something a little special, although I didn’t want to do it too crazily (I wanted it to be more fitting to who we are).

The next day in our apartment I gave Val a box. It said “Smile Box” on top. This was a reference to a present Val gave me early in our relationship. The smile box Val gave me had cute words about me and our relationship taped inside and was filled with Kit Kats. She mailed it to me because I complained once of not receiving packages in the mail.

Anyways, the smile box I gave Val was filled with random junk (some of her hair elastics, one of her own rings, rubber bands, etc). She smiled at me awkwardly and said, “how nice.” I encouraged her to continue and she lifted up a piece of paper in the bottom. Underneath it read the words, “Will you marry me?” in which she said “Yes!” I then said, “Oh, and I got you this too” and handed her the diamond ring I picked out. We both smiled, cried a bit and cuddled.

Smile box and engagement ring

Then we had pancakes.