Monday, May 29, 2017

NYC & Memorial Day Weekend

IMG_20170527_181817_254Happy Memorial Day to everyone here in the US. :) I am off from work today and had a nice IMG_20170528_134134_005 3-day weekend. Can't complain. :) It's nice to actually have the holidays off at my new job. But being involved in an international company & industry we are still never a 100% off of course. I have people in other parts of the world who don't have Memorial Day off and where it's business as usual so there is a lot of prep work to be done and a close eye to be kept upon things. But it's still nice to have an extended weekend of course. :) 

Saturday we went down to NYC and spent the day in the city. Had lunch and saw "Waitress" on Broadway. Great musical and it was fun to see Sara Bareilles in it. Afterwards we stopped and had a light dinner and some drinks before taking the train back to CT. Definitely a fun day out.

Yesterday, Sunday, we took advantage of the fact that the weather was semi decent (pretty humid but not raining at least) and went for a 2 3/4 mile walk. We had explored the same trail earlier in the season when the trees were still bare. What a difference a few weeks can make. So green and lush now. Was nice to be outside for a while.

Today it's been raining on and off pretty much all day. So we have been taking it easy. Slept in and are now at the Red Rooster pub for lunch. Going to stop at the grocery store for a few things on our way home and then catch up on some TiVo. Should be a relaxing night. We will see what tomorrow brings at work. At least it will be a 4 day work week so that's something. :)

Well, that's all the news here from my end. Hope everyone in the US had a nice Memorial Day weekend. 

Letter/Mail Update: Letters went out on Friday to: Eloine, NY and Celia/MA.. Received letters from/owe replies to: Lotte/Denmark and Caroline/Scotland. 

Posted by Hanna at 03:29 PM in Food and Drink, Holidays, NYC, Performances | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Valentine's, Birthday Weekend for Mike, Broadway and more

PixlrAnother busy week has come to an end. Already Sunday afternoon again, how does that happen? 

Had a good but definitely busy week. Tuesday was Valentine's Day. I had to work till 6 but after I got out we made our way over to Red Rooster in Newtown. First time I had been there but I really liked the place. It was busy but we lucked out and managed to get a seat at the bar. Yummy thin crust pizza.

Yesterday was Mike's birthday and we headed down to NYC to see "The Book of Mormon" on Broadway. Been wanting to see it for ages, it's been on Broadway since 2011 I think.  It was definitely worth the wait and really funny.  Had lunch at "The Perfect Pint" prior to the show and afterwards we went to dinner at Ibiza back in CT - yummy tapas. 

Today we slept in and then stopped at my office for a min. Wanted to hang up a couple of things I got for my cubicle. Afterwards we headed to 121 in Oxford for lunch. Relaxing and drinking some delicious rose from Provence now.

Let's see what next week brings at work. Mike is actually off to CA for 3 nights starting tomorrow. Our Australian friend Nicki will be in L.A. so he will meet up with her. I would have loved to have been able to go but with my new job and saving up vacation time it is really not a good time. Oh well. At least the weather has turned almost spring like here in CT at the moment too. Can't complain too much.  :) 

Letter/Mail Update: Received a letter/owe a reply to: Eloine/NY, Bianca/Germany and Tiffany/OK.

Posted by Hanna at 04:00 PM in Food and Drink, Holidays, NYC, Travel | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas Post

IMG_20161225_214318_378Merry Christmas. :) Hope everyone had a nice holiday. We have had a nice laid back holiday weekend so far. Can't complain at all. :) 

Friday I was off and we went to the movies to see "Rogue One" followed by lunch in Oxford at 121. Then on Saturday (Christmas Eve) we had a follow up appointment at the vet with Bailey to make sure she's healing ok (she is!) After that we headed to Stew Leonard's to pick up some food for dinner and the next day (what a madhouse!!) and then had lunch at the Marketplace before heading home and catching up on some of our TiVo shows and movies. Had a yummy feast of shrimp cocktail, cheese & crackers, Brie & baguette, broccoli & dip and wine. 

Yesterday, Christmas morning, we opened our gifts with Mike's sister and nephew (my niece is in Georgia at the moment visiting her boyfriend) Mike spoiled me with a Kindle Fire HD10 (that thing is massive!) and a bunch of Outlander themed gifts (the special edition season 2 Blu-ray plus a shirt and a shopping bag) Plenty of other nice things (PJs, tea, movie theater gift card, gloves, a cat broche and more) After our gift exchange we hung out at home for a bit, had more of our food and eventually headed to the movies to see "La La Land". After the movies we stopped into TKs for a bit, as they were open and actually quite busy. Had some Cajun wings. Been ages since we've been there. 

Today we slept in and puttered around the apartment for a bit. Going to head to the movies for movie number 3 of our holiday weekend "Passengers". Going to stop at Hallmark after the movie to pick up some Christmas cards. Kind of a tradition for me. Already bought some Christmas labels and wrapping paper online as well. Always good to stock up on that stuff after the holidays when it's on sale. :) 

Well that concludes our holiday weekend. Can't believe it's already back to work again tomorrow but I can't complain as it's another short week really. 2016 is almost at an end. Let's hope 2017 is a better year but I am really not too sure. I guess we will just need to wait and see to find out. In the meantime I hope everyone's happy and healthy and had a nice holiday weekend as well. 

Letter/Mail Update: Received a letter/owe a reply to: Jessica/DE, Celia/MA, Lotte/Denmark, Bianca/Germany and Eloine/NY. 

Posted by Hanna at 12:10 PM in Food and Drink, Holidays | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Holiday Prep, Sacher Torte & the vet

PixlrAnother busy week. Can't believe it's already Christmas next week. Where has this year gone? It's crazy. I was laid off from my old job the day after the 4th of July holiday and now it's already Christmas. At my new job for about 5 weeks now. Time is definitely flying. 

Was a busy week at work with holiday stuff (Secret Santa, Pot Luck, Holiday Party and more) so the week went by pretty quickly. Friday we had our Holiday Party at Mazzo. Had been there only once before but they have a pretty big banquet room upstairs. Had a fun time. Good food, open bar and karaoke. I am not a karaoke person but I did have fun watching everyone else. :) I am not the type of person who enjoys dancing or karaoke. I can't sing and I am terribly uncoordinated so those things are not fun for me at all. But I still had a good time hanging out with everyone and watching everyone else. :)

In less fun news also had to bring our new cat Bailey to the vet. During her check-up a few weeks ago they detected a small mammary tumor so we scheduled an appointment for her surgery. Before the surgery they took an x-ray and then also discovered that she had 7 bladder stones that needed to be removed. So she ended up having two procedures done at the same time and stayed at the vet from Thursday until Saturday morning. All things considered she's doing well and is dealing ok with her cone. We will need to bring her back to get a bigger cone though because when she twists just the right way she can reach her stitches and that's no good of course. All in all she's being her usual cute self, purring, eating and just rolling with things. Unfortunately the whole thing was not cheap but what can you do? The food she now has to eat isn't cheap either but I don't want her to develop more bladder stones so it's necessary unfortunately. Well, the good news is that the tumor at least hadn't spread yet so that's good. 

So I am spending the weekend hanging out with her. Wrapped my gifts for the people here (the stuff I didn't mail), wrapped up some cake and cookies for people. Oh that's right. I didn't mention yet that my lovely parents sent me a delicious Sacher Torte straight from Hotel Sacher in Vienna. So yummy. I am enjoying it very much but since it's a big cake I figured I would share with other people as well. :) So I made some packages for people, put away my laundry and worked on some other chores.

I have a big pile of letters to write as well but I am not sure I will get to those today. Think I will read some more in a bit after I finish my tea.  The weather has been all over the place this week as well. Some super cold temps with crazy windchill, then some snow on Saturday (which didn't make the trip to the vet very fun) and today pretty warm temps but back to cold tomorrow. Rollercoaster of weather, guess that's New England for you. 

Letter/Mail Update: Received a letter/owe a reply to: Jessica/DE, Celia/MA, Lotte/Denmark, Bianca/Germany and Eloine/NY. 

Posted by Hanna at 05:19 PM in Food and Drink, Holidays | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, December 12, 2016

Holiday Baking

IMG_20161212_070657And yup it's Monday again. The holiday season definitely seems to be racing by at lightning speed but then I guess that's like that every year. I have tried to be prepared and have somewhat succeeded but not altogether. I mailed all my Christmas cards and packages. The last batch of domestic packages went out a week ago so that's all set. I have heard from a few people who have received theirs so that's good. It cracks me up watching the speed the mail travels. A package from CT to Brooklyn, NY took 5 days where a package from CT to L.A., CA took 6 days. Makes no sense at all. Haven't heard from a friend in Delaware so hopefully that one will arrive soon-ish. Who knows about Oklahoma and Seattle. Guess we will find out how that goes. I did try to mail everything on the early side exactly for that reason. 

This weekend I spent a good amount of time with my friend Jana, hanging out and baking cookies. It's become somewhat of a tradition we developed over the last few years. This year we decided to make a variety of cookies and ended up with two recipes from her Russian grandmother (Rugelach and Farmers Cottage Cheese House), my mom's Linzer cookies, White Chocolate Macadamia Nut cookies and Chocolate Sambucca cookies. Quite an interesting mix. I think the Linzer and the Rugelach ones were my favorite. :) 

Let's see what this week brings. Woke up to a wintry mix (some snow, now rain on top of it) so hopefully the ride into work won't be too bad. We're doing a version of Secret Santa at work this week plus there is a potluck one day and on Friday we have our office Christmas party. 

Oh, forgot to mention Saturday we also went to the movies and saw "Manchester by the Sea" which was really good. Definitely a film I would recommend. Have a feeling it will end up with an Oscar nomination but we will see. Few movies out and still coming out over the holidays that I want to see so we may end up at the theater a few more times over the next few weeks. 

Letter/Mail Update: Received a letter/owe a reply to: Bianca/Germany and Eloine/NY. 

Posted by Hanna at 07:21 AM in Food and Drink, Holidays | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, December 04, 2016

It's the season ...

PixlrAnd somehow it's Sunday again. I am getting used to having both Saturday and Sunday off but the weekends definitely still fly by quickly no matter what.

The week went by pretty fast. My international cards went out on Monday. Wrote my US/Canada ones on Tuesday night so they went into the mail on Wednesday. And later in the week I put up our decorations and the tree. Also packaged up my domestic Christmas packages so those will go into the mail tomorrow for the most part. My international gifts went via Amazon and Target this year. Decided that was better as most of my packages disappeared somewhere in the postal system last year.  So this has had a better success rate so far. :)

Yesterday, Saturday, we went to the movies and saw "Fantastic Beasts and where to find them" in IMAX which I thought was pretty good.  Today slept in and then stopped at Kohl's to return some items I bought online and pick out something else.  Took forever. This is why I swear by online shopping normally.  Ugh. Went out to lunch after and going to catch up on some things on our TiVo later. 

 Letter/Mail Update: Received a letter/owe a reply to: Bianca/Germany. 

Posted by Hanna at 04:13 PM in Food and Drink, Holidays | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Movie Weekend

PixlrAnd the four day weekend is already coming to an end again  How do 4 days fly by that fast? But I can't complain.  It's been a nice, relaxing weekend.  

Thursday was Thanksgiving.  And we went to the movies to see "The Edge of Seventeen" followed by a delicious dinner at the Hopkins Inn. Super yummy food and a nice time with Mike and our friend Robin. Nice relaxed night.  

Friday we went to the movies again,  this time to see "Arrival" which was also a good movie.  Neat story. Sort of like "Contact" but with more alien interaction if that makes any sense at all. Pretty meta. Definitely enjoyed it  Afterwards we had lunch in Oxford at 121 and later caught up on more recorded TV shows. 

Saturday we slept in after staying up past 1am watching TV. Checked out the new Mexican restaurant Puerto Vallarta that opened in Danbury recently.  And later in the afternoon I started on my Christmas cards and finished the international batch (35 or so) I still have the US/Canada ones to do and that's another 40 to 50. Busy,  busy.  I have ordered most of my international gifts as well.  Decided to go with the online shopping route this year as it's easier and less chance of stuff getting lost. Last year almost all my international gifts disappeared in the mail. So annoying.  

Today we went to the movies one more time to round out the weekend and saw "Rules Don't Apply" which had an indie movie feel to it. Now we are at a local restaurant called The Marketplace where one of our friends is playing an acoustic set from 1 to 4pm for brunch. Very fun and a relaxing way to end the weekend. 

 Letter/Mail Update: All caught up with my mail at the moment :)

Posted by Hanna at 03:28 PM in Film, Food and Drink, Holidays, Performances | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving :)

IMG_20161124_122102Happy Thanksgiving to all my US friends :) Hope everyone is having a great day, spending it with family and/or friends. I have always liked the idea of Thanksgiving ever since I moved to the US despite the fact that I am not super crazy about turkey (I do love all the sides though, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, various veggies, etc) 

We had a nice day so far. Slept in which was nice and then had breakfast at Elmer's. Yum. Then went to the movies to see "The Edge of Seventeen". Really liked it. It's a great movie and depicts teenage life in a very real way. Hailee Steinfeld does an awesome job as Nadine. And Woody Harrelson is great as her teacher. Really the whole cast is great and the movie should be included in the long list of classic coming of age movies like "Clueless", "Mean Girls", etc. If you want to see the red band trailer click here. :)

Home right now but will head to the Hopkins Inn in a little bit for a delicious dinner. Meeting our British friend Robin there who will be joining us. Looking forward to yummy Wiener Schnitzel (I know, I know .. not very Thanksgiving ... but they do have all the traditional sides .. yummmm) and Toblerone Sundae for dessert. Delicious!

Going to relax for the rest of the long weekend, probably catch a few more movies. Also need to start writing my Christmas cards, especially the international ones. I already ordered some gifts for my friends oversees. Decided to go with the online shopping route this year as last year all my international packages except for one ended up lost in the mail. So this year I decided to shop online for my international friends. Let's hope that works out better. :) My US friends I will still buy for and ship from here but I figured this was safer for the oversees people. 

Also going to catch up on some TiVo during the weekend and really just relax. Did some online shopping (Yankee Candle, Kohls) for some stuff that was on sale for Black Friday. Mostly gifts or stuff I needed anyway (more pants to wear for work as I can only wear jeans on Fridays). I would never stand out in the cold for any Black Friday deals though. Hell No! So crazy. Happy to be shopping from the comfort of my warm home. Plus no one needs to work on the holiday for me to be doing that. :)

 Letter/Mail Update: All caught up with my mail at the moment :)

Posted by Hanna at 05:04 PM in Food and Drink, Holidays | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Work News and other stuff

PixlrIt's Sunday, another week gone by and things have changed quite a bit. But let's start from the beginning.  

Monday was the 4th of July and we were at work but got out around noon. Afterwards we checked out a winery not far from the office in Newburgh (Glorie Wines) for some wine tasting and then had lunch near the water at the River Station Restaurant. Had a nice afternoon. 

Tuesday we went into the office as normal but things went sideways from there. I haven't really written much about what's been going on at work. I think I did write that our company was recently (early May) taken over by another bigger company. Everything was fine at first but let's just say it started to become clear relatively quickly that our future there might not be so bright. 

Well to cut a long story short. The office/branch where Mike and I work is being closed down and we were laid off. I finished out the week working for my old boss to tie up some loose ends. And Mike is doing the same until the end of the month. 

It's obviously not ideal but it's ok. One door closes and another one opens. We will land on our feet and find something else. Going to spend next week reworking my resume and looking at various job sites. 

On a more fun note, today Mike and I went for a quick walk at a park in Southport followed by lunch at Flipside in Fairfield. Going to be hanging out with my friend Jana later at night.  Already have a date set up to meet up with my friend Falguni on Tuesday as well. Going to try and see my friends while I have some extra time on my hands. Might as well enjoy some of this.  :)

Mail Update. I received a letter/owe a reply to: Emilia/Finland. 

Posted by Hanna at 02:49 PM in Food and Drink, Holidays, Wine, Work Stories | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, July 04, 2016

4th of July weekend

20160704_084131Happy 4th of July to all my American friends. :) The holiday happens to fall on a Monday this year which is turning this into an extended weekend for most of the country. I say most of the country because I still ended up working on Saturday and today. But it's ok, not the end of the world. 

We really aren't the BBQ or picnic type people mostly anyway so it's not the end of the world. We actually did have an invitation to go to a BBQ/picnic yesterday but already had other plans so that didn't work out. 

Saturday after work we had a leisurely lunch at 121 in Oxford. And on Sunday we took advantage of the nice weather and spent some time outdoors. Went to Hyde Park and walked along a trail by the Hudson. The weather was pretty humid though so even the short 2.5 pretty flat trail felt like a challenge. We did have fun being outside though. 

Afterwards we went to the Mill House in Poughkeepsie for a late lunch and to watch the France-Iceland Euro game. When that was done we went to the place where Candy Hearts was playing. It was at a pizza place in Poughkeepsie and had more of an open mic feel. Kind of weird but pretty neat all in all. There were a bunch of other people playing before Mariel came on. Had fun hanging out and listening to the various people though. 

Today we are at work but should get out of here by noon. Afterwards we are going to check out a winery not that far from here (Glorie Wines) for some wine tasting and then lunch near the water at the River Station Restaurant. Should be a nice afternoon. 

Mail Update. A letter went out to Eunice/Malta on Tuesday last week. All caught up with my mail at the moment. :)  

Posted by Hanna at 10:41 AM in Food and Drink, Holidays, Outdoors, Wine | Permalink | Comments (0)