life in and around NYC is insane

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year

Thursday, December 29, 2011

From last winter

It sure looks lovely . . . From a distance!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Road trip

Stew Leonard's

Ever hear of it?

It's a food Mecca of sorts.

My friend Donna wanted to go yesterday, for the prepared foods - Donna is about to have surgery and needs easy meals in the house duting her recovery.

So a group of us went all the way from Long Island to Connecticut to go grocery shopping.

Have to admit, it's a fun concept.  Talking cows, singing butter, a parrot in the seafood section -- animatronics to keep you amused while you shop.  Lots of free samples - we tasted roast beef, fudge, cookies . . .

I don't think I'll be making the pilgrimage often. But if they actually build one here, I will be shopping fairly often.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

the difference between love and martyrdom

The other day A screamed at me that she and F gave my daughters love and that they were there for my kids when I was not. They were at my kids' school MORE than any parent. They were living vicariously through my girls. They had so much time on their hands that they could hang out at cheerleading or play rehearsal, etc. Kids began to call them the "red aunts" because of their long red hair. All the kids at school knew who the "red aunts" were. Many of the kids loved them. Some laughed at them behind their backs. They had no other responsibilities, no jobs, no other commitments. They "helped" around the house but didn't have the responsibility a SAHM would have. So of course they could hang out at school. I admit, I was a bit jealous at times. I was around for activities as much as any working parent, but I would have treasured the chance to be there more often. But bills don't pay themselves and I never got the chance to be a stay at home mother. There were kids who knew about the "red aunts" who didn't even know Jen and Becca. Yeah, make a career, make a life out of hovering over your nieces instead of getting a job and making a life for yourself. It's like living with four teenagers, only two of them are growing up. And the other two . . . 44 going on 14. Living off their parents, no idea what they will do with the rest of their lives. Nope, can't say I envy them now.

Monday, December 26, 2011


Started a new medication as a result of my sojourn at the hospital.  Looked up the possible side effectd the day I filled the prescription.

Sure enough . . .

Why, oh why, did I have to start a medication which leaves my hands and feet feeling cold - just as winter arrives?

New Year's Eve plans

So the plans are set. Nine of us at Drew's house. Catered food,nothing too fancy, champagne and a casual atmosphere. Becca will be hanging out with her boyfriend. Jen and a group of friends are talking about Times Square but my guess is they'll hang out at someone's house instead. My parents have tickets for the opera, early curtain, and should be out of the city long before the ball drops. A casual and fun New Year's for all.

Sunday, December 25, 2011


Chinese food and a movie today - loved the new Sherlock Holmes.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas plans

Tonight will be spent at a friend's. She will cook dinner and her kids and mine will decorate the tree. Since it is still Chanukah, we will bring a menorah and light candles. A blending of traditions. Let us banish the darkness and let in the light of peace and understanding.

Friday, December 23, 2011

More about the twins

Well, I know why my sisters don't like me. They think I lack gratitude and that I am a "taker" with no appreciation for all they did for the girls. they won't recognize what they did which offended me. They have no clue how many times, during the crazy divorce years, how many times I had to defend their behavior. I own what I did . . . In trying to ruin Drew's relationship with the girls. Drew owns what he did, in trying to ruin their relationship with my family and me. We have both taken responsibility for it. I allowed the twins to do stuff, too, because it served my purposes at the time. But they refuse to acknowedge that what they did was wrong, that what they did caused me grief in court, that I had to defend their actions to the law guardian and to several judges. I was threatened, numerous times, with a change in custody if my sisters didn't stop "interfering". If that had happened . . .

Thursday, December 22, 2011

crying today

I am so done with everyone today. Drew, my sisters, my parents, my children. You can all take your drama somewhere else because none of you give a damn about me.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The prisoner has been released!

Surgeon says I can "ease into" my normal activities but that I am not ready to go back to work.

I am fortunate to have very good short term disability benefits.

So it's time to relax and enjoy the time off.

It goes sour

Biggest mistake of my life . . . Pulling F and A into my inner circle, allowing them to co-parent with me.  At first they respected me, but there came a point when they decided they knew better than me and somehow forgot that I was the parent and they were the aunts.  Should have moved out of my parents' house as soon as that started to happen. When Jen was 11 and Becca 9 I said I'd hire someone to see to the girls  after school.  And was promptly told " We won't let them into the house."

Like I said, I should have moved out.  But I was doing battle with Drew at the time.

My concern at the time was twofold. Primarily it was my rights as a parent.  Good, bad or indifferent, it was my responsibility to raise my children.  Doesn't matter if someone else  can do a better job than I can.

And I had real concerns for my sisters. Neither of them has ever held a real job.  They're currently 44 years old with the life skills of teenagers, living off my parents.  No income, no health insurance, no prospects.  What will happen when my parents are gone?

One of the reasons I am public enemy number one is because I started raising this isdue 10 years ago.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

happy Hanukkah

We had an evening with latkes, the menorah,presents and gelt - my father was glowing because all four daughters and both granddaughters were home.

Monday, December 19, 2011


So today I saw my primary care physician. Showed up on time for my 10:00 appointment. Wasn't seen until 11:00. Was supposed to see the surgeon tomorrow. That's been postponed until Wednesday. Not happy.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

so about my sisters

It's a sad situation. I blame myself, in part, because I contributed to it,but the real blame goes to my parents, who indulged them, and to their own poor choices.

As I said, there are four of us. I am the oldest, my sister H is a year younger than I am. F and A are identical twins, born six years after H, when my parents (for various reasons) assumed there would be no more children.

My parents had very clear expectations for me and for H . . . Once you finish high school you either go to college or you go to work. I went to college, graduated, went to law school, graduated and found a job . . .and found myself on the road to adulthood. H went to college, dropped out and went to work, went back to school . . .ultimately finished school, started a career, went back to school. . .adulthood.

Not so with the twins.

They found a passion for theater early in life. They had considerable talent, and went to a
regional performing arts high school part time to develop that talent. Followed up with BFA degrees from a fine university with a wonderful program in musical theater. Did a lot of summer stock.

And then . . .

Came home to Long Island. Started going on auditions, etc. Couldn't.
get a foothold in the industry.

I think part of the problem was distance . . . They should have been in NYC not buried in the Suburbs. And they were very picky about what they wanted to do . . . They wanted to work together as a sister act.

So they had a few jobs here and there . . . But nothing long term.

And then I got divorced. And moved back home with two little girls.

F and A love my daughters and easily slipped into the role of nanny to my girls. My kids were 4 and 2 at the time, I was going through a hellish divorce, and I was glad to have he love and support of family. My sisters accuse me of not appreciating what they did for me and my girls . . . But back then, I was overwhelmed, and couldn't have managed at all without them. So how did it all go sour? I leave that tale for another day.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

the prisoner has been set free

I am posting this from Drew's house. Got tired of looking at my own four walls, decided to look at a different set of walls.

Actually I am starting to feel a lot better. Still have some discomfort from the surgery but I am on the mend.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

dysfunction junction

I have been blogging for several years now but I don't think I have mentioned the issues I have with two of my sisters.

I have three sisters. Let me be clear that I love all three of my sisters and am concerned about their welfare.

But the youngest two . . . Don't like them very much. I have a lot of hurt feelings about things they've done. And about things they continue to do.

I seem to be their punching bag. I am blamed for everything that's wrong in their lives, whether it has anything to do with me or not.

What gets to me the most is that they profess to love our parents and my daughters, but put their anger towards me ahead of their love for our family members.

I've decided I need to talk about it. I have kept silent far too long.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

home again, home again, jiggety jig

There's no place like home!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

It galls me to say this

My gallbladder and I are about to part company.  I had a severe attack Thursday night and I've been in the hospital since Friday morning.

I had some issues back in April but was mostly OK during the summer.  Started having issues over the last few months.

So I'll be having surgery tomorrow.

Not my idea of holiday fun.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Another milestone of sorts

Jen has been summoned to jury duty.

I doubt she'll be picked.  We're still in the middle of the lawsuit from her car accident. So when the lawyers hear about it, they won't want her on the panel.

Still, being called is another sign she's growing up.

New Year's Eve plans

Looks like this year we won't be going out. Instead Drew is inviting a small group of friends to his house.

It makes more sense. We always have trouble finding a restaurant that suits everyone's budget and tastes.

Last year we wound up at a seafood restaurant. Food was great, band was boring and we were overdressed . . . We dressed for New Year's Eve and everyone else was wearing khakis and sweaters.

The previous year we went to a great Italian place with a good DJ, but all the food had red sauce and one member of the group is allergic to tomatoes. DJ was great but most of the group didn't get up to dance - what a waste.

I'm willing to spend a little more for a nice evening but some members of the group can't . . .Or won't spend what I am willing to spend.

So we're getting food from a local restaurant and having the party at his house. Should be fun.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


That sweet cross between a cookie and a cake, made famous by Proust in his writings on Paris.

I have never been to Paris. But I have been to Starbucks.

I'm not a Starbucks groupie but I do pop in occasionally. And when I'm there I usually buy their Madeleines.

So you can image my disappointment when I stopped by the day before Thanksgiving. . . .I love the peppermint hot chocolate this time of year. There were no Madelines!

Were they out of the cookies? Or did they discontinue them?

Just had to go back a week later to find out.

The Madeleines had returned.

What a relief!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

he likes croissant

Ever hear of a cat who likes croissant?

I had a croissant for breakfast yesterday. Mr. Kitty jumped onto the table, sat down beside me and put his paw on my arm. . .begging for a piece of my croissant.

I should have made him get down off the table.

I gave him a piece of the croissant.

He loved it.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Cats must be psychic

Redford is an unneutered male cat.  And apparently determined to stay that way.

He was supposed to go to the vet this afternoon.

My sister let him out late last night. Usually he'd have come home for breakfast.

But today . . . He seems to be enjoying his freedom.

Next time we will have to put him on house arrest.

who or what is on your bucket list?

The topic came up this weekend, because Drew bougiht tickets to see Neil Diamond in concert next summer, and his friend Marc said something to him about "Crossing it off your bucket list."

I never made a bucket list, a list of things to experience before I die. Not even when I was so sick 6 . . . almost 7 . . . years ago.

I guess it's because I am enjoying so many things now.

I suppose, if pressed, I'd probably put travel at the top of the list. There's so much of the world I haven't seen and want to explore.

I want to see Billy Joel in concert. I saw him perform at Citi Field during Paul McCartney's concert but I've never seen Billy in concert.

But what I really want . . .To dance at a wedding. Or rather, two weddings. I want to see my children with good careers, good friends and loving partners. I want to hokd my grandchildren in my arms.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

continuing our PBS phase

Today we saw the Boston Pops at the Tilles Center - the concert hall at CW Post College.

It was a holiday concert, they played selections from "The Nutcracker", popular music such as "Sleigh Ride", and with their guests Rockapella various Christmas songs. There was even a sing-along at the end of the show.

I love live performances, I get carried away by the music . . .

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Love Walt Handelsman


Love this site Gives reviews of local restaurants by critics, bloggers and ordinary patrons. Want a good restaurant for a romantic dinner? The best diner? A good burger? Try this site.

And if you look at the Long Island leaderboard . . . Yes that's me as one of the top contributors.

Can't help it. Drew and I like to go out, and I like to share.

Funniest Urbanspoon moment?

We ate in PF Chang's in March. I wrote a thorough review, described every dish we ordered. Talked about the mediocre service.

Six months later we went back. After dinner I logged onto Urbanspoon. Read my review and laughed. We had ordered the exact same dinner. And the service was mediocre. No need for an update.

Friday, December 2, 2011


Thursday, December 1, 2011

it's dead singers season!

Want immortality? Record a Christmas album and hope it becomes a classic.

I mean, you never hear Bing Crosby, Perry Como or Burl Ives on the radio anymore, except at Christmastime. (Almost included Andy Williams, but he's still alive . . . )

One day a few years ago, I was in a store, the radio was tuned to an oldies station, and a Carpenters song came on. A young woman, in her 20's, said to her friend "It sounds like Christmas!"

Sad that such good music is only heard once a year, isn't it?

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