Binghamton

The Reeds Do Christmas

Happy New Year, dear friends. Sorry for the radio silence.

It has been sort of an intense month. Pat's grandfather passed away December 4th. While he seemed ready to go, it was hard to lose him and see the effect on the family. It's really hard for me to talk about such things, so I will take the wimpy way out and won't even try. I will just say he was just a good soul, and I will always think of how warmly he welcomed me into the family and how when Greta was little he used to get down on the floor with her to play, which I thought was awfully sweet for a guy with Navy tattoos.

The shootings in Newtown, CT, shook me, as it shook just about everyone. Trying to explain it to my own six-year-old was just about more than I could take.

Then on Christmas Eve the shootings in Webster, NY, hit close to home. One of the volunteer firefighters was a good friend of Pat's family, and he was even at Pat's grandfather's funeral.

It seems like there is so much sadness in the world, but we do our best to find joy and do a pretty good job at that.

We went to Binghamton for Christmas, and we got spend a lot of quality time with family and saw quite a few friends.

It's sort of funny (not totally funny haha), but Greta and I were super sick the week or so before Christmas. The day we got to Binghamton I realized I was getting worse rather than better, and I ended up going to a walk-in clinic, which was a first for me. The kind doctor gave me a prescription for antibiotics (the kind you can take and still drink alcohol - score!) and told me a couple over-the-counter things to take to help me out. It was a bizarre scene at the CVS that is open 24 hours while we were waiting for my prescription. It was just one of those experiences where everything is hilarious when they probably shouldn't be. We had to wait a while, and Pat was mastering his skills using one of those grabber thingies. Here he is approaching me with it next to the adult diapers. See? Funny.

Also funny, Pat took Greta to the Roberson Museum and Science Center while in Binghamton. I was working at the time and Pat kept texting me ridiculous pictures, this one being my favorite.

On Christmas Day it snowed and Greta wanted to go sledding at the elementary school where Pat used to sled. I know it doesn't look like much, but this little hill was pretty steep.

The day after Christmas we went to Skaneateles to have Xmas festivities with the McCarthys. My dad always gets us a nice care package of wine. I love wine.

One other little gem for you: Greta's black ski mask she got from my brother last year is the gift that keeps giving.

Fran

We

File under: Binghamton

We took a short trip to Binghamton this weekend to go to the Central New York Maple Festival with Pat's parents. We drove out there last night and had some QT with the Reeds, and then we headed out to Marathon, NY this morning to go to the festival. It was chilly and spitting rain, which is about right for April in New York. First and foremost, we went to Marathon's high school for the all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast.

I hope you like "see food."

Here's a picture of the Reed boys, who are all smiles after the tasty meal.

And, for good measure, the Reed gals. I still have a lot on my plate, but eating with a two year old on your lap is not as easy as it may sound.

The food was ridiculously good, especially considering the mass amount they were making. The maple syrup was so good, though, they probably could have put it on cardboard and it still would have tasted good. We walked around for a bit and saw the sights, and then we headed back to Rochester around lunchtime. It felt way too soon to be ending our trip when we left, but now it's fun to be home and know we still have a lot of valuable weekend time to appreciate. The sun has since come out, and we are expecting really good weather tomorrow. Life is good.

Fran

I got shot in the hand

File under: Binghamton

Err, or insert other zany excuse for why I haven't posted in so long. Seriously, though, there is a lot going on, and as much as I want to talk about it all in great detail, I just don't have the time. Being concise is not my strong suit, so you all suffer for that.

Valentine's Day was great, probably the best I've ever had. I've never been a fan of V-day, and I've set my sites low since my first boyfriend gave me a book about dinosaurs that happened to have an inscription in the front TO him FROM his grandma. Way to re-gift. PS - I'm not a fan of dinosaurs. It didn't get much better with my second boyfriend, who gave me a Tori Amos CD single and a hand-drawn sketch of - you guessed it - Tori Amos. Oooh, a sketch of another woman for Valentine's Day. How kind! I'm not bitter, I swear. I just resigned myself to setting my sites low on Valentine's Day, but then Pat Reed went and raised the bar this year by not only going grocery shopping and cooking dinner but also cleaning the house. AND he bought me gerbera daisies! My favorite! I'm ruined forever! (Ruined in a good way.) As much as I realize Valentine's Day is a totally made-up, silly holiday, the girly girl in me can't help but get hugely excited about flowers and a nice dinner. I can't help it.

Saturday we headed out to Binghamton for the night. Pat's friend Andy and his lovely wife, Erin, and daughter, Zoie, were in town. Amazingly I have never met them, but we all felt like we knew each other, thanks to the Internet. We hung out with the kiddies in the afternoon.

Watch out Buckethead, you've got some competition.

Here's the entire group that was hanging out.

This picture seemed notable to me only because I think it's the first picture of my profile that didn't make me cringe.

Later in the evening we headed over to the Reed's house to have dinner with Pat's parents. Then, after Greta and Zoie went to bed, we went to the former Carnsies (for you Binghamtonites) and had the BEST adult-time fun we've had in a very long time. There are few occasions when I meet people and feel like I hit it off with them immediately, but this was one of those times. (I hope they liked me too!!!!) It was definitely a little rough waking up the next morning, but it was well worth it. In the morning we had breakfast with the Reeds, and Pat upgraded their computer. I can honestly say that this was the best trip we've had since the little one was born. She opened right up around our friends and her "nana" and "pa," and she was in great spirits the entire time. I can't tell you how happy this made us. (Did I mention she’s usually a complete pisser anytime we go anywhere or people come visit us?)

We've had a few photo shoots lately to try and get a nice picture for Greta's birthday card invite, and it has been slightly akin to pulling teeth, but I think we finally settled on something tonight. Here is one of the rejects that I really love. Horrible lighting, terrific expression.

In other news I'm editing my first real book - a fictionalized true story! Not a mind-numbing instruction manual (like I used to edit at the former workplace). Now I just need to invent a few more hours a day to work on it!

Oh crap, this ended up being really long after all.

Fran

Christmas was so four days ago

File under: Binghamton | christmas

I know, I know, this update is super late. What can I say?

Monday afternoon we headed to Binghamton for the Reed Family Christmas festivities. We had the best pizza in the world (Nirchi's) for dinner and had some QT with the Reeds. "The kids" got goofy glasses for an early Christmas present.

Greta, of course, wanted to join in on the fun.

Monday night we headed to the Scott's house to see some old friends and we laughed a lot. There are quite a few grandkids in the Scott family, and I'm always amazed to see their progress each year. One of the grandkids, a three year old, really struck my fancy. He hugged me immediately when I walked in the door and was pretty much glued to me until it was time for him to go home. He announced that he was "The Love Doctor," and after hugging me about 20 times and sitting on my lap for a good 10 minutes, he turned around, pulled my shirt down (exposing my bra) and asked me what my name was. I found this hilarious, and we are now friends for life.

Let's see, so Tuesday morning we slept in a little (thanks to co-sleeping, not our typical habit but one we admittedly enjoy) and then started opening presents. Greta got some fantastic gifts from Ma and Pa Reed (aka Patty and Franny), her Grandma and Grandpa Reed, and Uncle Eric. Pat and I got her this tunnel/tent thingy, which I figured could go either way. She actually loved it, as you can see.

She got a Greta-size digger truck from her Uncle Eric, complete with a hard hat, ignition, noises, and even some brand recognition. Let's just say she loves it so much we already need to replace the batteries.

Wednesday morning we headed out to Skaneateles for Christmas Part II with the McCarthy family. I was downright giddy to see my family. Although this picture makes me look like a doof, Greta looks super cute so I wanted to post it.

At my parent's house we had a very-bacon Christmas. There was pork everywhere: in the appetizers, in the side dishes, in the main dish, and my mom even made something we called bacon gravy. We even each got a pound of bacon as a gift. Hey, it's the holidays and McCarthys love pork, and there are medications to lower our cholesterol and blood pressure. Anyway, enough about delicious cured meats.

More on this to come, but my parents gave Greta an amazing gift. Here is Greta's expression when she opened it. I feel like she's looking at me like, "Is this for reals?" Like I said, more on that later.

Another big hit of the day was a farm toy that Phil and Becky got for Greta. She is enthralled with all of the little noises.

Not pictured is a gift that Phil and Becky got for Greta that I love: they're LL Bean pants with crabs embroidered on them. I often ask Greta if she's wearing her "crabby pants" when she's being difficult, so now when she wears them my question will have more meaning...or maybe it will cause confusion. Oh well, either way, they're very cute.

Tomorrow we're taking ANOTHER trip to Skaneateles (3rd time there in 8 days) and I am VERY excited about it. Too tired to discuss now, update to follow.

Fran

Third time's a charm?

File under: Binghamton

Well folks, we missed out on the house we put the offer in on, due to a technicality. It's kind of a long, annoying story, and I'm not much in the mood to go into detail right now. Alls I know is that we kinda got punk'd and that's that. Seriously, I thought for sure that Ashton and a camera crew would jump out when we heard the news. Hopefully the next house we put an offer in on will work out, because this is a little more excitement than I like in my life.

Tomorrow is "D day" at Kojak. Pat will find out if this summer will be spent doing fancy research scientist stuff or porch drinking. We'll be sure to keep you all abreast of the situation.

Pat and I took a trip to Binghamton yesterday to see some friends and family. First, we went to Eric and Nurse Tiffany's brand new house. They've been working very, very hard on this house for quite a few months and their hard work has definitely paid off. Their house is fantastic. Tiffany made a lovely dinner and we caught up on each others lives. It had been so long since we'd had some quality time with those two. Later on in the evening, we headed over to the Scott household, where we hung out with Emily, Pete, Wayne, Phat Tom, Sarah, Jeff, and some other peeps. We played a few games, inducted a few more people into our gang (No Limit, Inc.), and tried on some of Bob and Dee Scott's clothes.

Pat and Sarah in Bingo

This morning, we hung out with most of the aforementioned friends and then headed home.

We're really looking forward to next weekend. Mike and Holly are finally tying the knot!! Okay, so that means Mike and Holly will be off the market, so stop trying to ask them out on dates.

Mike and Holly are tying the knot

-Fran

2003-12-29 15:54:50

File under: Binghamton | christmas

Fran and I had a lovely Christmas in the Bing-Hamptons. It was great to see my family and friends. We went to church on Christmas Eve with my parents, Uncle Frank, Eric, and Nurse Tiffany. This has been a tradition in our family for as long as I can remember. I think that makes about four or five trips to church this year. I would like to believe that that is enough to secure me a special little place in heaven. Well, that and the $1.00 bill that I put in the offering basket.

After church, we went back to my house for some shrimp cocktail and cocktails. Then, Fran and I went to the Scott family’s annual Christmas Gala. I went to school with the Scott girls (Emily and Sara) from elementary school through high school. I like to think that we have an open invitation to their party every year. If they ever want us to stop coming over on Christmas Eve, they will need to send us an unvite. Things got more crazy than usual this year at the Scott residence. We all started doing shots called "Dee's nuts," named after Emily and Sara's mom, Dee.

On Christmas morning, we opened our presents at my house. Fran gave me some sweet-ass Emergency Heroes Pez dispensers and a silk robe (Silky Jenkins Style). I also got a circular saw from my parents, so if anyone needs me to rip the crap out of some boards, I’d be more than happy to. We had dinner at my parent’s house and then we went over to Nurse Tiffany’s parents house for a few drinks. Fran and I finished the night over at our friends Kelly and Tim’s house. It’s always great to see my old high school friends.

On the 26th we got up and drove to Skaneateles for Christmas at the McCarthy house. Fran and I got a digital camera. We got the Canon A70 (don’t tell the folks at Kojak.) and some gift certificates and stuff. We also had the McCarthy’s world-famous eggs benedict. Later on that night, we headed home to spend the rest of the long weekend with Maynardo "the wonder cat." When we got home, my bride started feeling crummy. She has been home sick ever since. We think she may have bronchitis. At least, that’s what WebMD (AKA her doctor) told her. I am going to nurse her back to health with a heavy dose of my love, just in the nick of time for New Years.

All and all, it was a great extendo-weekend filled with family and friends.

-Pat

PS-
Holy Crap! Did anyone else know that Jesus was so into sports and rock guitar?

The Bing-Hamptons, Cookie Puss, and Ham Dinner

File under: Binghamton

Even though my lady friend couldn’t accompany me on my homecoming, I had a great weekend. I was able to see a lot of family and friends. It is always so nice to see everyone and I feel very fortunate to have so many friends that I am still in touch with.

[Thursday 04/17/2003] - I took off for the Bing-Hamptons in my new tricked-out automobile, after work. I arrived on the East Side around 8:00pm. After hanging out with the parental units for a couple of hours, I headed out toSara, Pete, Pat, and Mindy at Carnsie's 04/17/2003 Carnsie’s Irish Pub, which is conveniently located a couple of blocks from my parent’s house. There, I met up with some high school friends and we proceeded to drink and be merry. Take a look at the Binghamton Part I Gallery (04/17/2003) if you don’t believe me.

[Friday 04/18/2003] - I met some of my friends for lunch at Poncho’s Pit. The company was great and the Spiedies were plentiful. After lunch, Pete, Wayne, and I decided to get some birthday presents for our friend Sara. We rolled up at Carvel, and from the moment we walked through the door, I knew it was a mistake. First of all, there were two people in the store when we walked in, and from the smell of it, at least one of them had shat themselves just moments before our arrival. Secondly, although Fudgie The Whale and Cookie Puss were listed on the menu, there was no sign of them in the store. All the cakes they did have were freezer burned, and to top it all off, one of the shitters that worked there was a real asshole. I have pretty much come to the conclusion that Carvel sucks and I may go back at 4 in the morning and burn it to the ground.

Later on Friday, the aforementioned Sara, hosted a small get together at her place. We stayed there for a few hours and then did a little bar hoping for the rest of the night. See pictures in the Binghamton Part II Gallery (04/18/2003). Psycho Cab DriverPete and I shared a cab home. The cab was piloted by two scumbags. I got dropped off first. Hopefully the shady cab drivers didn’t turn Pete into a human throw rug. Listen here dirtbags, I can positively ID you and if Pete turns up missing, I’m gonna roll over on ya.

[Saturday 04/19/2003] - I had breakfast with Eric and Nurse Tiffany (my brother and sister-in-law) and then I hung out with Andy and Jamie and their kid, Master Brady. Around 4:00pm, I left for Syracuse, where I was reunited with my future bride at the residence of her brother.

[Sunday 04/20/2003] - We ate some Easter Dizzle over at the in-law’s house. Then, Frances and I went home to see our beautiful child Maynard.

-Pat

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