My Real Life

October 12, 2010


Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 9:26 pm

I realize that if I want to draw people to this blog, it seems counterproductive to send you to another site from my blog.

However, one of my friends posted a link to this article, and I really, really liked it.

We could all do to remember this in our daily lives.

So, read it, but come back.

I’ve still got some good stuff to share. 🙂


October 11, 2010

In Case You Can’t Find Us

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 6:50 am

We’ll be here.

In the basement.

Playing Band Hero.

We all rotate parts.

Except Monkey in the Middle.

He is lead guitar with some extra fancy moves.

We are addicted.

It was half price.

We couldn’t help ourselves.

Don’t judge.

October 10, 2010

Anniversary Trip to Salem – Last Full Day

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 8:49 am

So, we woke up on Saturday and it was a beautiful fall day.

Crisp, cool, breezy.


We started with our continental breakfast.

To get to the breakfast room, you had to walk out the front door of the inn, then down some stairs into the basement of the building.

It was kinda cool.

They had small tables set up and cereal, muffins, bagels, toast, cinnamon rolls, etc.

Coffee, tea, cranberry and orange juice.

It was really quite nice.

Limited selection, but who’s complaining?

The room was cozy and sweet.

We decided to hit the museums.

So, we started with the Witch History Museum, moved to the Pirate Museum, and finished with the Witch Dungeon Museum.


But, when in Salem, you have to embrace the cheese.

It’s kind of a rule.

So, we went with it and it was fun.

We took the obligatory tourist stockade pictures outside of the Witch Dungeon Museum.

I have to say, out of the three museums, it was the Witch Dungeon Museum that got me the most.

I know this history of the witch trials inside and out.

Names, dates, places.

Mass hysteria in a society always fascinates me.

However, actually, walking through a recreation of the dungeons where they held those being accused was pretty creepy.

Particularly the coffin cells, where you had about an inch on either side of your body and you were chained to the wall so you couldn’t sit or lie.  Just stand.  For as long as you were incarcerated, which for some was months.

Also, when they explained where the shore line was at the time, and when there were storms, the dungeon filled with water and the prisoners (all of whom were innocent) found themselves knee deep in water that was full of human waste and rats.

Talk about inhuman conditions.

Anyway, from there, we went back into a bunch of stores and walked around.

We bought the kids some gifts.

Monkey Girl got a “Charmed in Salem” sweatshirt, because she loves the tv show, “Charmed” (which she really isn’t allowed to watch, but she’s seen a few episodes and is hooked).

We found a cool comic book store and bought Monkey in the Middle a Han Solo action figure and Baby Monkey a Luke Skywalker action figure.

Then, we got a Where’s Waldo book for them all to share.

The monkeys absolutely love “I Spy” and “Where’s Waldo?” books.

The gifts were all hits.

Which reminds me…

We called home several times on our trip.

We were having fun, but we missed the monkeys.

We can’t help ourselves.

Every time we called home, when Monkey in the Middle would get on the phone, he would ask, “Where are you?”

He didn’t want to know what state we were in, what store we were in, even what room we were in.

He needed to know our exact location in whatever room we were in.

“I’m on the bed, with my legs hanging over the side.”

“I’m sitting on a bench to the right of Daddy”

“I’m standing in the middle of a cemetery.”

He’s a little quirky.

Lunch and dinner were uneventful, but relaxing and fun.

We decided that we were going to sign up for the Haunted Footsteps tour of Salem at 8:00, but by the time we got to buy the tickets, they were sold out.

So, we went for the Ghost Tour of Salem at 8:30.

I can’t tell you how much I was looking forward for this tour.

The guides are dressed in period clothes and are all a little “off.”

I was ready to be scared to bits.

I love to be scared.

I couldn’t wait.

I think the actual tour would have been scarier if Baby Monkey was our tour guide.

Because our tour guide?

She was the worst.

She started every sentence with “Alright…” and then would pause for 30 seconds before continuing her sentence.

The scariest part of her spiel was that she thought she was going to get tips at the end.

She would have us standing outside of a church and she would say, “Where you are standing now is hallowed ground.  It was on this hallowed ground that one of the scariest things in Salem happened.  And, I’ll tell you about it when we get to the other side of the church.”

We got to the other side of the church and, apparently, she forgot the story because she moved on to something else.

This tour had the potential to be terrifying.

We visited a house where a child’s parents had locked her in the attic while she was dying of Scarlet Fever so they wouldn’t have to have the whole family quarantined.

She eventually died, and a hundred years later, a man and his young wife bought the house.

One night, the man brought his wife out to an orchard and hung her and then burned her alive.

We assumed that he was possessed by the little girl or something.  The tour guide never actually made a connection.

Apparently, people still see lights go on and off on the third floor, and a flame in the window, despite the fact there is no floor, so no one can actually be on the third floor.

Potential for a scary story.

She told it like a Disney story.

The good news is, Real Man and I had an absolute blast on this tour.

We just giggled and giggled our way through Salem’s scariest places.

At one point, we were right outside the cemetery where Giles Cory was pressed to death.

She said, “This is where he was pressed, and that is where his wife was hung.”

Real Man turned to me and whispered, “What were they, dirty laundry at the dry cleaners?”

Get it?

Pressed and hung?

It was VERY funny.

As other tour groups passed us, the people in our group would longingly look after them and say to the other tourists, “Can we join your group?”

Real Man and I made the mistake of catching eyes with a mother and her daughter, who were also enjoying themselves in the way we were, and from then on, it was very hard to contain the laughter.  So, we started hanging in the back, because we didn’t want to be rude.

But see, that’s the good thing about Real Man and I.

We can be anywhere, in a crowd of any size, and it’s always like it’s just the two of us.

Even after all these years, we prefer each others company to anyone else.

Works for us.

So, the tour ended, and we walked back to the Inn.

Again, I must mention that you have to embrace the cheese in Salem.

Because by 10 pm, when the tour was over, Salem was full of people in full supernatural regalia.

There were a gajillion people dressed as witches, many wizards, a few zombies, a mummy, and many people in masks.

I think it’s a place where people who don’t feel like they fit in the “real world” can come and just chill out because everyone is different in Salem.

I think that’s a good thing.

The next morning, we woke up, went to breakfast, and headed home.

More inappropriate songs on the iPod, and a few that were just fun to listen to.

Like “Patience” by Guns-n-Roses, which we danced to, together, at the junior prom.

We gawked at the millions of drivers who blew by us while texting or talking on their phones.

One man was even doing paperwork on his steering wheel as he passed us going 85 mph.


And then we were home, and while we had a perfect weekend together, it is always wonderful to come home to the monkeys.

I don’t know when we’ll ever get away alone again, but this trip was everything we hoped it would be, and we’re glad to be home.

October 7, 2010

Anniversary in Salem – Day 1

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 7:17 pm

So, you’ll remember from my last post that we ate dinner at Upper Crust pizza.

I awoke on Friday morning at 4 am.

From 4 am to 8 am, I haunted the bathroom of our hotel room, vomiting every last bit of food and moisture out of my body.

First thing to come up…

…the pizza.

Hence my assertion that it was, in fact, the pizza that made me sick.

(Real Man remains unconvinced, as he didn’t suffer any ill effects.)

(Have I mentioned his stomach of steel?)

By the time Real Man woke up at 8, I was starving and shaking from low blood sugar.

So, we hit the continental breakfast that the Inn had to offer.

I was so dehydrated, I drank about 7 glasses of orange juice and had a piece of toast.


We decided to go to the House of the Seven Gables.

It was a dark, dreary and cold day.

Perfect, for Salem.

We paid our money for the tour and waited by the waterfront.

Did I mention how dark and dreary it was?

So, we finally get inside, and as the tour goes on, I start feeling poorly again.

Room by room we tour the house, and in each room, my face is more flushed, my hands are more trembly and I’m feeling more faint.

But, I trek on.

I don’t like public scenes.

We went through the awesome secret staircase, built behind the fireplace, and it renewed my love of old, historic homes.

The tour finally ended and we headed to the car.

As we sat there, we decided that, maybe, I was just hungry.

So, Real Man starts reading the names of local restaurants we could hit.

One of them was called “In a Pig’s Eye” and as soon as he said it, I had visions of a pig over a fire on a spit and my stomach finally rebelled.

I hopped out of the car, ran to the front where there were some bushes and recreated the projectile vomit scene from The Exorcist.

It was awful and it wouldn’t stop.

Would. Not. Stop.

I mean, obviously it eventually stopped or I wouldn’t be here, typing this, today, but you know what I’m saying.

Once it did stop, I stood up, brushed myself off and felt 100% better.

We went to lunch and then walked around Salem for a bit until the rain just started coming down WAY too hard for sane people to be outside.

So, we did what any parents of 3.5 children would do in the afternoon while on a romantic weekend away without the kids.

We went back to the inn and napped for a few hours.

It was divine.

When we woke, we decided to brave the weather and head out to find some dinner.

We chose a restaurant called Rockafellas.

We went in, sat down and ordered.

I had really wanted soup, but they didn’t have any on the menu that were appealing to me, so I ordered pasta.

Real Man wanted a bowl of chili and a burger.

After we ordered, the waitress came back out from the kitchen and told Real Man, “I’m so sorry…now that it’s October we don’t serve any soup or chili on the weekends.”



Wouldn’t you START serving soup and chili in October, particularly the weekends when your place fills up with chilly tourists?


So, there we sit, chatting with each other when this guy comes out to serve the table next to us.

Apparently, at Rockafella’s, waiters and waitresses are allowed to dress up throughout the month of October.

This poor guy was the only person who decided to take them up on October 1st.

As we chatted, we also found this interesting drink advertisement on the table.

As a non-drinker, I’m not sure which part of this I enjoy more.

That the Helltini costs $20…

…or that you actually have to sign a waiver before you are allowed to drink it.

Anyway, we got a good chuckle over that, and then the mother/daughter pair at the table next to us were served.

The mom had some type of chowder and the daughter had a steaming, hot bowl of chili.

Excuse me?

Yes, that’s right.


On a weekend.

In October.

I leaned over and said, “Excuse me, is that chili?”

They looked at me as if I was insane and said, “Um, yes,” when clearly what they wanted to say was “Um, obviously psycho chick!”

I said, “Okay, thanks!” and started glaring daggers at our waitress.

When I finally got her attention, she came over and I said, “Excuse me, but SHE got chili,” gesturing to our neighbor.

She was a little flustered, but their waitress happened to be there, as well, and explained to our waitress that they certainly DO serve chili on the weekends…it just wasn’t one of the specials that day.

Oh good lord.

Anyway, real man got his chili and burger, I got my pasta, and all was right with the world.

As we ate, the rain started up again, in earnest, and so after dinner, instead of exploring, we just headed back to the Inn.

So, Day 1 in Salem was fairly uneventful in the ways of the supernatural, however, highly entertaining, nonetheless.

Tune in tomorrow for Day 2 in Salem which was, by far, the most awesome of them all!

October 4, 2010

Anniversary in Salem – Part I – The Trip

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 7:05 pm

So, we decided to celebrate our 12th anniversary by traveling to Salem, Mass.

I’m a huge fan of all things Halloween, witchy, scary, ghouly, or anything even remotely supernatural.

Real Man is a huge fan of me, and was more than willing to indulge me in my desire to visit Witch City, USA.

So, off to Salem we went.

Last Thursday, we dropped the monkeys off at school, Real Man put in a half day of work while I went and got some blood work done.

We met up back at the house, got in the car and left.

Left on our weekend of Love and Witches, as Real Man said.

Love and Witches.

That guy kills me.

As we drove down the street, a black cat ran across our path.

How appropos.

We decided to use the car ride out there to listen to all the music on our iPods that we don’t listen to when the monkeys are around.

For me, that included singing Salt-n-Pepa at the top of my lungs, some Naughty by Nature, a little Alice Cooper, and others.

Real Man laughed and said that when I’m 80, I could wind up with Alzheimer’s and not know a single person around me…not even know my own name.

Yet, I’d still be able to rap out the lyrics to “None of Your Business” just like Salt.

Or was it Pepa?

I digress.

Real Man’s big song is Eminem’s “Lose Yourself.”

You should hear my guy belting out that one.

He knows every word.

It’s really cute.

As we moved into Connecticut, we realized that Connecticut is beautiful!

I’ll post a picture or two here, but I apologize in advance.

We realized, in Connecticut, that we both forgot our cameras.

So, iPhone pictures will have to do.

Even the highway road signs are gorgeous.

Just a little design and it makes it seem like Connecticut cares enough to go the extra mile.

Plus, on major stretches of the highway, they have these gorgeous trees as the dividers.


A beautiful drive.

And then, the GPS went wonky.

We wound up driving straight through Boston.

That’s right, folks.

Straight through downtown Boston during rush hour.

So, our trip didn’t quite take the short amount of time we had hoped it would.

We weren’t thrilled.

Then, Love Bites came on the iPod and we were back.

We got into Salem around 6:30.

We checked into The Salem Inn.

Old, original building in Salem.


Our room was on the 3rd floor.

Old, original building in Salem.

Our room was on the 3rd floor.

Just in case you didn’t make the connection, that meant we went up 3 incredibly steep flights of stairs every time we came back from somewhere.

I’m not in terrible shape.

But, I do have this baby taking up some of the space my lungs used to inhabit.

Just sayin’.

We asked the lady at the front desk where a good place to eat would be.

She told us about a few places, we picked a pizza place called The Upper Crust.

We ate, walked a bit, and went back to the hotel.

Tomorrow, I’ll share with you why The Upper Crust was the worst possible decision we could have made.

I’ll also tell you about secret stairwells and super cool wiccan shops.

But that’s tomorrow.

October 3, 2010

Our Anniversary

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 4:26 pm

22 years ago, I sat next to a totally cute boy at lunch.

We went to the Junior Prom together.

We dated, broke up, went to college, dated, broke up, graduated, started dating again.

Always stayed friends.

13 years ago, in August, that cute boy asked me to marry him.

12 years ago, today, I married that boy.

Life has been…more wonderful than I could have ever imagined.

22 years gone, in the blink of an eye.

12 years, 3.5 kids…gone by even faster.

Happy Anniversary to my best friend and the love of my life.

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