Tuesday, January 27, 2009
a)The Mall at Short Hills
b) Brunch at Grill 73
c) Getting Manis/Pedis
d)Joining the Peace Corps
e)At Funtime Junction in Fairfield
I think we would have gotten more votes for choice (d then we would have for e), but e) is the correct answer.
This Sunday, Chanel glasses and all, we traveled with our two favorite boys to Funtime Junction filled with pint size boys and girls running around in just their socks. While it took a few minutes for Blake to warm up to his surroundings, Benjamin, the older of the two, was off and running and didn't stop for over two hours. Then Blake got in on the action and ran Nadia ragged while our husbands conversed in a corner about sprinklers, surveyed the scene and snapped pictures of the "funtimes."
It was special to see Benjamin acting like a big brother to Blake. "Come on Bake, Come on Bake," could be heard throughout the place house when Benjamin wanted Blake to follow him to the next activity. Benjamin also won him a turtle and was so proud to present it to him.
I hope Benjamin and Blake will grow up to be great buddies like their mommies are (not that they have a choice) but after today I think their life-long friendship has already started.
While it might not have been the Last Call Sale at Neiman Marcus or a delicious poached eggs, I couldn't have imagined spending a better day with friends who are more like family.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Cue the trumpets....Welcome to the premiere of Kamienski TV....
Here is a little sneak peek from the channel:
Friday, January 23, 2009
My Mom thinks it was my fault for what happened. What do you think?
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
When we first arrived Benjamin was napping, so Wally and I decided to check out the first demonstration, Sub-Zero, while he was snoozing. We were able to relive our third grade science class all over again this time with real live clouds in the room. Check out Ben sleeping in the clouds.
After a brush with solids, liquids and gas, Benjamin opened his peepers and we headed to check out some live animals including a snake and a frog. Benjamin was very eager to pet the giant frog (this thing was HUGE and highly poisonous) and when he was told he couldn't, he wanted out of the classroom. So we left the VIF (very important family) area, and headed into the museum to check out I Explore, an exhibit made just for the younger set. I Explore didn't disappoint Ben nor Mom and Dad. We had a blast with the ball machine and rock xylophone and sand box which was actually filled with rice instead (good idea). But Ben's favorite had to be the exhibit that taught the little guys about amplified sound.
We ended the day at LSC with a trip to the moon with Elmo, Big Bird and the muppet from China (sorry I can't recall his name) by using our imaginations that and a mini-blow up planetarium that was impossible to get in and out of (wish I had video of 6'5" Wally crawling out of).
After hanging with the stars (i.e. Big Dipper and North), we bundled up ready to brave the cold with a little more knowledge in hand. Thank you Liberty Science Center for a making science fun for all ages.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Well on an email today, I finally confronted him on it. He had busted my chops about something so I thought I would return the favor by casually mentioning the firecracker crack.
He knew he had been busted so he said, "You are a firecracker--but a very, very good one. The kind they use to end the shows." To that I say, "BOOM!"
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
The job pays 150,000 Australian dollars (105,000 US dollars) and includes free airfares from the winner's home country to Hamilton Island on the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland's state government announced on Tuesday.
In return, the "island caretaker" will be expected to stroll the white sands, snorkel the reef, take care of "a few minor tasks" -- and report to a global audience via weekly blogs, photo diaries and video updates.
The successful applicant, who will stay rent-free in a three-bedroom beach home complete with plunge pool and golf buggy, must be a good swimmer, excellent communicator and be able to speak and write English.
"They'll also have to talk to media from time to time about what they're doing so they can't be too shy and they'll have to love the sea, the sun, the outdoors," said acting state Premier Paul Lucas.
"The fact that they will be paid to explore the islands of the Great Barrier Reef, swim, snorkel and generally live the Queensland lifestyle makes this undoubtedly the best job in the world."
Lucas said the campaign was part of a drive to protect the state's 18 billion Australian dollar a year tourism industry during the tough economic climate caused by the global financial meltdown.
"Traditional tourism advertising just doesn't cut it sometimes and we are thinking outside the box by launching this campaign."
Queensland Tourism Minister Desley Boyle said some people might question whether it was risky to let an unknown person become an unofficial tourism spokesperson for the state.
"I think the biggest risk will be that the successful candidate won't want to go home at the end of the six months," she said.
"This is a legitimate job which is open to anyone and everyone."
Applications are open until February 22. Eleven shortlisted candidates will be flown to Hamilton Island in early May for the final selection process and the six month contract will commence on July 1. Job-seekers can apply online.
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Today is my Dad's birthday and before we headed over to my parents, Wally and I began practicing with Ben to say "Happy Birthday Poppa." With each practice run it became clearer and clearer. As we walked into my parent's house, I said, "Ben do you have anything to say to Poppa?" Without any further cajoling, right on cue, he said, "Happy Birthday Poppa." I thought my Mom and Dad would burst with pride. My Dad's voice was a little shaky when he responded, "thank you Benjamin."
I also had been practicing with Benjamin singing Happy Birthday, but he will only sing it very quietly. So you'll notice, if you watch the video, you'll hear Mrs. Galasso's voice loud and clear but not Ben's voice singing. However, if I let the video go a bit longer you would have heard him singing, "Happy Birthday to Poppa." I swear!
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Yes my 10 year anniversary was a little over a week ago but I just got back to work and I have been slammed since I walked through the door I haven't had time to capture my anniversary weekend. Ok with the excuses over, here is the story. When Wally and I decided that it would be better to hold off on the BIG anniversary trip, we knew we wanted to spend a romantic few days just the two of us. So Wally asked me what I wanted and I told him, "I just want to ride in a one-horse open sleigh." I got the Jenn "maybe you need to be on some meds" look but I knew Wally would make it happen.
Why this request? Maybe it was hearing and singing Jingle Bells over and over again? But, the truth is that when I thought of something utterly romantic to do, this popped in my head. Now where to make this happen, we tried a few places in New Hampshire and most were booked and others I didn't nor wouldn't want to stay in. We then thought Vermont must have this activity a plenty. In fact, I thought that's probably how people got around in Vermont. We found a wonderfully quaint place to stay called the Yellow Farmhouse Inn (yes, it was Yellow). We stayed in the Stephanie - not sure why the rooms had Jersey Girl names but the room was darling. With our room all booked, Wally started calling around to a few places to arrange our romantic hot chocolate-filled ride and that's when the problem happened.
Apparently, Vermont had experienced a "warm-spell." THIS COULDN'T BE!!! Yes, there wasn't enough snow on the ground the day before our anniversary to go sleigh riding. However, they were expecting some snow during our stay but we would need to play it by ear. Wally in his truly positive nature said, "don't worry it will happen." As we began our drive up there, I was worried there really wasn't snow in Vermont. There was more snow in Jersey -- maybe we could have rented a horse-driven sleigh down King Street. But the miracle happened, just as we were 30 minutes outside of Waitsfield, VT it began to snow -- magical snow. I'm not talking Jersey-snow. I'm talking about snow that looks like feathers floating down from the sky. I'm talking about being able to make out the incredible shape of an individual snowflake. It nearly brought me to tears. After we got settled in the room, we started making phone calls to book this thing. Wally left a lot of messages and got one response, "maybe tomorrow, there still isn't enough snow." My dreams were yet again squashed.
The next morning after a perfect evening with my husband, I woke up to a winter wonderland. The snow was coming down and had covered the entire meadow. I got in Wally's face (who was still sleeping...oops) to say, "IT IS SNOWING!" Wally was like, "that's great Jenn. I need some more sleep." "No Wally you need to get downstairs and start calling a few places to get me that ride!" Why did Wally have to go downstairs and make a call because - 1. Our cells didn't get service in the area 2. There were no phones or TVs in the rooms. Wally eventually got up and made a few calls. Believe it or not, the news wasn't very good. Apparently, the snow was too "light". I can get into the number of reasons but it just aggravates me to think about it. Not giving up, we had our breakfast and packed and headed towards Stowe, VT. They, reportedly, had gotten more "packed" snow then the area that we were staying in because they were on the other side of the mountain. With fingers crossed, I called Gentle Giants Sleigh Rides and I got the news I was looking for, "yes, of course, we have sleigh rides happening today when do you want to come?" We made our appointment for 11:30 am and arrived about ten minutes early. The snow had just fallen and the sun had started to shine on the freshly fallen snow. There was a covered bride and a beautiful meadow -- this was it -- what I had dreamed of!!
Our horse was Justin, a Belgian and the biggest horse on the lot weighing in at 2200 pounds, and our driver was Ted, a man who had lived in Vermont his whole life on a farm except for a few years when the farm couldn't support two families him and his wife toured the country running out of money in Tahoe. From riding under a covered bridged to trotting through a meadow to "laughing all the way, ha, ha, ha", the 25 minute ride was everything I had every dreamed it would be and more. On the ride, we both realized we would need to come back and do it again not because we wanted to experience it again but because we knew that Benjamin would have loved it. We knew it was time to go home and see our boy. Thank you Wally for making my Anniversary dream come true. You are a prince.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Last night, Benjamin did not want to wear the pajamas I put out for him. He only wanted to wear a t-shirt and needed a new pair of pajama pants but the kicker was he insisted on wearing his winter knit cap to bed. I wasn't going to argue.
For Christmas, as mentioned, we got Benjamin a fish tank. The other day he came into my bedroom laughing. I knew he was up to no good. When he left the room again, I followed him to find him putting his hand in the fish tank then licking his hands. I yelled at him. He laughed at me.
Same day, as I was straightening up my closet, I was bending down over my suitcase unpacking. Ben come right up underneath me and started moving the hair out of my face. After he was satisfied that all the hair was out of my face, he planted a kiss right on lips. I love that kid.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
This year, Benjamin had a few favorites. In no particular order, here is the list:
"Fishy" - Translation Benjamin's new aquarium
"Pisty Cup" - The Piston Cup Race Track
"Choo Choo Train" - A plethora of Thomas the Train paraphernalia including a train table
"Cars" - A Lighting McQueen Power Wheels
"Cars Show" - A Lighting McQueen TV
Kind of see a trend...I'm sure the are more favorites to come for Benjamin, and when he looks back on his Christmas mornings of past, I hope he will recall a favorite gift from his childhood.