Monday, September 7, 2009

Wally and Anderson

Last time I was home, Anderson wanted to see the pics on my phone. His favorite is the picture of me and Wally the Green monster at Fenway. After seeing this picture, he found my Wally bean doll (which has been with me to about 15 Sox games, various cities in the states and now Germany - and which I've grown rather attached to). He hugged the doll, insisted on sleeping with it, and carried it everywhere; every time I tried to sneak it away from him, he caught me or asked me where Wally was. He took to calling him "my new friend" and told Momma all about his new friend. Momma thought he had made a new friend, Wally, at church. It was adorably precious. He would crawl in my lap and ask to see the picture of "Libby and Big Wally" and then say, "I want to go to there. I want to see him!" The kid asking me to take him to Fenway to meet Wally may have been my proudest moment as his aunt. :) So, when I left last time, I left Wally and instructions for my momma to sneak it away from him and hide it in my room. When I went home this weekend, Wally was in hiding. Finally, Anderson and I found him, and the attachment came back. Throughout the 24 hours I was home, I kept telling him Wally wants to see his new home, so he's gonna go back to Rome with me. Anderson completely agreed and was ok with it. He wanted me to know he was gonna hang on to Wally until I left. Today when I was getting ready to leave, Anderson was getting ready for naptime (by ready I mean rubbing his eyes and screaming he wasn't tired). I asked him for Wally, and he sat on the edge of his bed, hugged Wally tight, pouted, and said, "I don't want you to take him." It was the most pitiful thing I've ever seen in my life! Needless to say, Wally's gonna continue his stay at Trishie's for the time being. I'm ordering a new one to make a switcharoo next time I'm home. :) But underneath it all, I love his attachment to the little green monster!

Day with the Nephews

Anderson loves riding in the gator. He can't necessarily steer it in the right direction, and he has a tendency to end up in the neighbor's yard or at the bottom of the hill in the back. When this happens, he gets out, finds an adult and then says (very sweetly), "Will you get my gator?" Finally after spending some time playing on the gator with him, he learned he needed to get permission to push the pedal instead of just driving all over the place.

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My favorite part of this is his sing-songy "Push the pedal." Later he sat in my lap and watched it repeatedly. He laughed hysterically when he almost ran over me, and he yelled out, "LOVE YOU, LIBBY!" when we watched and he heard me say, "I love you, Anderson," and he blew me kisses when I asked for those too. Watching this entertained him for a good 30 minutes.

Charlie then came to join in the fun.

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(Charlie, Charlie, here's your seatbelt, Buddy)

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Good times were had by all. Nobody was seriously injured in the making of these videos :).

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

New Idea

So, life has been a bit stressful with the dissertation, traveling, new move and new job. I've made a New School Year's resolution (that I adopted from an old one my friend PJ had years ago). I'm going to read for fun every night before going to bed. How much time I'm able to dedicate to it will depend on the day (and, quite honestly, on whether or not the Sox game went into extra innings or lasted longer than usual). But my new resolution is for me to remember that I love reading and that it's not always "work" -- I think we English major people forget the fun in reading too often.
But all of that to say, with this new resolution, I'll be reading more. So, I've decided that I'm going to try and write reviews for the books I'm reading for pleasure. They won't be the type of review I'd publish in a journal but the kind of review that would be beneficial to you -- my readers and other pleasure readers. Those that are good, I'll let you know. I'll also let you know which ones to avoid...and why. People often ask me for a good book they can read, and I'll give some here and there. But this is a way to give it to lots of people at once. I'm not transforming the blog to that solely. I'll still include my random baseball thoughts and Sox praise as well as the random stories of my life (that is why I started this blog, right?).
Let me know what you think.
Look for a review of Sophie Kinsella's Twenties Girl soon. I finished it last night.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Red Sox Day in Atlanta :)

Today was surreal, and sitting here in my apartment finally cleaned but exhausted and a tad sunburned, I still keep trying to take the whole day in. I’m blogging to share my day with you but also in attempts to make a record for myself. So, here goes Red Sox/Braves ’09, Day 2.

Preparations:
This morning, Molly and I got up early and ran to Old Navy to buy knit skirts for the games. Last night I wore a denim skirt, and let me just say that Atlanta in late June is not conducive to denim skirts – even at night. I was miserably hot! We headed to the ball park at 12:15 jamming to my Red Sox playlist. We got there around 1, got a good parking space and walked straight to Will Call where we picked up our field passes.

On the Field:
We had to go meet at Fan Central inside the park to gather with the rest of the group of pass holders. We chilled out in the Hank Aaron room for about 30 minutes before heading down to the field. We were escorted down to the field and were let free in a gated area that spanned from the Red Sox dugout to the Braves dugout. The group was about 50% Sox fans and 50% Braves fans. We gathered around the Red Sox dugout area. We inched our way up to the front, and ended up in the corner where home plate was directly to our right and the dugout directly to our left. When we first got there, Papelbon was giving an interview a little bit away from us, but the field was pretty empty. Jeff Francoeur, Derek Lowe, Brad Penny, and Youk were the only players out there (Paps went back in the dugout after his interview).
We kept taking pictures because we felt like that was as close as we’d get (which was about 50-60 feet away). Papi came out, and everybody around us went nuts. We started picture snapping like fiends.
Braves BP:
The Braves players all came out to hit, and Sox players began to trickle out. David Ortiz got caught in a signing frenzy after agreeing to sign for a young boy standing in the stands but close to us on the field.
He signed autographs for about 5-8 minutes. He took my glove to sign it, told everybody he had to run, signed my glove and handed it back to me before jogging off towards the dugout. Red Sox players kept going in and out of the clubhouse and dugout and onto the field. There was a good bit of interaction between the Sox and Braves players; the Atlantan Sox boys hung out with their Atlantan Braves friends, and those who played together in the WBC hugged each other in greeting and talked and laughed like old friends. Then the Sox players went back into the clubhouse.

Stretching
The Sox emerged from the dugout en masse and gathered about 10 feet in front of us to begin stretching. It was comical how some of the players were hard core with their stretches while others stood around pretending to stretch. Once stretching got underway, Jason Varitek was off to our left about 15 feet away. My sister, as many of you know, has a huge celebrity crush on Tek, and as many of you also know, my sister is unabashedly bold. So, she says in a typical, everyday, casual voice no different than she would use with me, “Hey, Tek, why don’t you come on over here and stretch” (and she points to a player-free spot about 3 feet in front of us). He looked at her, shook his head and laughed as his face began to blush. He, of course, didn’t come over to stretch by us, but he also didn’t ignore her. They shared a moment, and she’s gonna be talking about it the rest of her life. It was PRICELESS!!

Sox BP
Not long after the Sox started BP, Jacoby Ellsbury came over to sign some autographs. He began a few people away from me and moved farther away – signing for just a minute or two before jetting off to the cage. So I didn’t get an autograph, but several little kids did, so that’s cool. We watched the Sox take batting practice and do some warm up tosses for awhile – taking tons of pictures, of course. I was pleasantly surprised to see some of the Sox players take infield practice. Side note: the Braves took infield practice too – and for a longer amount of time. After awhile, Varitek came over to sign autographs. He spent at least 20 minutes signing – he signed until there was nobody else on the field asking for an autograph. He signed my glove and my Red Sox baseball (though it smeared a bit :(). A while later, Tito went to get a picture with these two adorable kids who were in the stands, and he got roped in to signing autographs for all of us too. Someone asked him what he thought of the heat, and he said he loves it. It’s been so cool in Boston that the heat (the 97 degree heat and, apparently, the humidity as well) was a welcome relief. He signed my glove and then excused himself to get things done. About an hour before game time and about 3 minutes before we had to leave, Jason Bay came over and signed for the smaller group of us who were still around. Several people commented on how badly they wanted (we all want) him to sign a contract. One dude said, “Tell Theo I told him to sign you” – JBay laughed at (not with) him (though he did it politely). Another person said, “Yea, tell him we’ll chip in some to help with the money.” JBay said, “I don’t care about the money. It’s not at all about the money. I’ve made plenty of money already, and that’s not at all what I care about.” It was nice to hear somebody say that and actually believe them. It wasn’t the Johnny Damon, “I don’t care about money...I would never play for the Yankee’s” shtick. I was surprised he actually verbalized that he’s made plenty of money already. Ok, surprised isn’t the right word there because he’s the epitome of humble; maybe pleased is a better word. Most say it’s not ALL about the money (meaning, it’s partly about the money); that wasn’t what he was saying at all...I dug it. Oh, and yes, he too signed my glove.
We were told it was time to leave, and the guards began tearing down the gate we were behind. Seriously, were we psychotic fans, we could have run amok on the field (before being arrested, of course). But, we’re not psychotic fans. We’re also not freaks. Molly and I took a few pictures behind home plate and headed to the concourse to cool off before heading to our seats. We sat down at a picnic table still in disbelief and rehashed the previous two hours by looking back through our photos.
The Game
The game was an amazing pitching duel between Wakefield and Vazquez. The woman behind us, apparently, thought it was an amazing game between Wakefield and Derek Lowe because she yelled GO LOWE every time she wanted Vazquez to get an out. She and her Red Sox fan husband were the kind of annoying, loud, obnoxious fan that you pray won’t sit near you but always does.
It was unbelievably hot, and we were sitting in a section with zero shade. About the fourth inning Molly looked at me and said she was going for cover because she was about to pass out. I thought she was being dramatic, so I dismissively said ok. She went inside. After a few minutes I realized she probably wasn’t being dramatic, and I texted to see if she was ok. She was in the bathroom splashing water in her face and drenching her back with cool water in hopes of cooling herself enough to where she wouldn’t get sick. I finally got worried and went to look for her. There was an open door with several women cluttered around. I heard someone say, “She fell,” and I started walking faster because I was certain it was Molly. I walked all the way through, realizing it wasn’t Molly on the floor of the bathroom. I walked out and ran into her. She was feeling better and headed to our seats while I went back to use the bathroom. The girl in the floor was probably in her twenties, and she had passed out while sitting on the toilet and had fallen. All that to say, it was HAWT in Atlanta today!
The rest of the game went without incident. The Sox won 1-0. It was too perfect of a day for it not to end with a Sox win! Needless to say, Molly and I haven’t gotten up off the couch and chair since we got in! Tomorrow won’t be nearly as exciting but twice as hot. :) We’re looking forward to game three and wrapping up our fun-filled weekend, 2009 Sox game fix!
If you're interested in checking out all the photos from the weekend, here's the link. Enjoy!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Mini-Manny Rant

I didn't realize it'd been so long since I've posted. I apologize. I'll write again soon and try to make up for lost time. Now, on to the Mini-Manny rant.

Bud Selig’s hands are tied; the rules are clear. He can go around saying that Manny as All-Star will take some consideration and he’s weighing his options all he wants – there are no options to be weighed. Can the rules be changed for future years? Sure. But this year, the rules say that the PED suspension can’t bear weight on All-Star participation.
It should bear weight in the voting, though. Manny is one of the best players of our generation – steroids or not, but he hasn’t earned the spot this year – not necessarily because he took PEDs but because he missed 50 games. The reality of it is that if Manny makes the team, someone more deserving won’t. Somebody who played twice as many games as Manny and put up equal or better numbers will be sitting at home watching. And what are the chances that Manny will actually show up to the All-Star game? Was it last year or the year before when Manny led all voting for the All-Star game and some phantom injury that didn’t bother him the game before or after the break kept him from playing in the AS game? Manny’s presence (if he shows) requires someone else’s absence, and this is what I think isn’t fair. Somebody more deserving and clean will be sitting at home while Manny pulls a Manny by coming but refusing to play (or some similarly bizarre scenario).