It's Just Honey and Water, Honey

Labels wait to go on the bottles at Glades Pike Winery

Labels wait to go on the bottles at Glades Pike Winery

After a leisurely morning at the Summit Inn (yes, free coffee and they had a fire going) we headed to the first winery on our itinerary.  Glades Pike is about an hour away – and watch those rural routes, signage can be difficult to see.  We arrived at Glades Pike, open since 2002, around 12:30, and were welcomed by the staff, despite the fact that there were several customers already at the tasting bar, Liz, our contact, quickly had us set up with a tasting menu.  We explained that we didn’t have a lot of experience with wine, but having lived in the Finger Lakes region we were aware that in certain regions of the United States, grapes grow differently and local wineries tend to excel at certain grape blends.  In my experience, drinking white in the Finger Lakes can be trancendental, but drinking reds is like sneaking your friend’s grandmother’s Manechewitz when you are 13 – grape juice with a kick.

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I knew this day was coming but I didn’t know it would bother me so much.

I had a professional meeting today and it was uncharacteristically positive and productive.   I was discussing the future and vision of my subject and it was . . . how else to explain it?? Amazing.  Finally, someone else seems to see the big picture and acknowledge my ideas as valid and useful and in the best interests of students.  The idea that I could be a part of the solution and not the problem and discussing the possibilities with someone who my mother-in-law would affectionately refer to as a “BIG, Big-Wig!”  I prattled on and on about improvements over the past few years and looking toward the next few to help build this Camelot-esque community.  I could see myself being a resident of that very office someday (or frankly a better one with a better view and I would talk to little people like me about big plans for the future .  .  .

It didn’t  hit me until I signed on to a few sites to check on the status of my applications and security clearances.  I may not be here to see any of that happen.  The sorrow washed over me and and I had to physically catch my breath. I,  or rather my husband and I,  have committed ourselves to moving back home.  Of course this never came up in conversation because . . . well . . . I forgot for a few minutes.  I was blinded by the light or science or something.

We were never leaving to get away from this city – just to get back to our city – Pittsburgh.  He would be starting a new job in the same field but I would really be starting over professionally.  Will giving up the professional successes I’ve had be worth the personal comfort and joy I hoped to gain by going home?

So, I still heart PGH, but I’m torn . . .

Hit the road, n'at

The Summit InnWanting to wake up in wine country ready to get to some serious tasting, me and the almost-husband (AH) decided to head down to the Laurel Highlands after work on Friday.  With our reservation confirmed at the gloriously historic Summit Inn Resort and armed with the news that the dining room closed at 9pm, we planned to hit the road by 7.  This gave me enough time to properly pack.  For a weekend devoted to wine tasting I reasoned I really only needed five things: sundresses, sunglasses, sunhat, and sunscreen.  Oh, and a swimsuit for the indoor and outdoor pools and jacuzzi at the Summit.  Fortunately, I decided to throw in some jeans and a sweater at the last minute because sadly the weather did not cooperate with my packing plan.  Leaving by 7 allowed me to attend my Friday workout class to prepare for a weekend devoted mostly to eating and drinking.

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Which Hoops and How High????

July, 2009 – About 4 months ago, my husband asked me to update his resume and cover letter.  After being assured that he was not being laid off (ALLEGEDLY!) I agreed.   NOTE: Remember in The Full Monty when Tom Wilkinson was laid off but he kept getting dressed and leaving for work as if nothing happened so he would not disappoint his wife?  It could happen . . . you never know.

Anyhoo, I said, “Sure, I’d be happy to do that.”  After all, it was just the busiest time of year at my job AND 15 years since I wrote his first and only resume for the first and only job he has ever had post college.  I also have no earthly idea what he actually DOES all day except ignore the well worded, and might I say, HILARIOUS emails write to him during the day.  I mean I know what his degree is in and I know what his job title is but beyond that – actually, I most likely just said ”OK, I’ll be off of crack, I mean, Facebook in a second.”

I’m starting on that resume today.

UPDATE:  This part of the story was written about 2 months ago when we decided to move back to Pittsburgh.  About 2 days later, he was offered a job WITHOUT a resume or interview or job search.  I don’t want to jinx it but if it all works out it will be perfect for moving home.

I, on the other hand, am right in the middle of all of trying to jump through all of the hoops necessary to even submit an application for a teaching job in PA.  Don’t get me wrong – I think any and all  screenings necessary for students to be safe are completely warranted in this day and age.

Add to that, the question of when to send an application for next school year – is it too late? too early?  Will they really keep it on file for a year or will it get lost among the zillions of apps they get every month?? How do I even choose the right districts when I haven’t lived there in so long??

It all just makes me anxious to know that there is only so much I can do while still living in exile.  Maybe I’ll check out some updates on Facebook to relax for a minute . . .

Some G-20 Events for Everyone

Pittsburgh Skyline
Image by 1Sock via Flickr

Here are a few of the events going on this week for everyone to attend.  Please let me know of any other events that are G-20 related and open to the public.

GET Larimer: G-20 Walking Tour – Friday, Sept. 25 3-6pm

The GET:Larimer Project is the first installment of a new concept, Green Environmental Tourism in the neighborhood of Larimer, Pittsburgh, PA. Held Friday, September 25th from 3pm-6pm, during the weekend of G20 Summit in the city of Pittsburgh, GET:Larimer will be highlighting an existing community and how a group of individuals and organizations with shared vision can leverage the natural opportunities of blighted areas through sustainable economical development and social entrepreneurship to create real, positive, and lasting change.

While Larimer is a small neighborhood in the East End of the City of Pittsburgh, the solutions and ideas that will be described, demonstrated, and discussed can be applied to communities around our country and throughout the world. For this reason, GET:Larimer will also stress the idea of application of these concepts outside of the community of Larimer coupled with the knowledge that a community can be reborn through the determination of group of individuals seeking neighborhood improvement.

The event of GET:Larimer on September 25th with begin at 3pm with a 1 hour, 1 mile guided walking tour of the neighborhood. Guides will take attendees through this East End community showing over 20 points of interest ranging from project sites for green design and community mobilization, to historic buildings, to empty lots with ideas of new creative green and sustainable reuse, to local existing small businesses, to long standing social organizations. Proposed points of interest will specifically include sites where our partner organizations have begun work including the GTECH and Grow Pgh community gardens, Larimer School, and the Kingsley Center.

During the course of the walking tour, participants have the ability to see the true fabric of the community, by learning the history, viewing the present and imaging the possible future of the neighborhood. Demonstrations will be provided by partner organizations and community members showing how green and sustainable community based concepts will be implemented. For example, samples of vegetables from the community garden will be offered to participants and energy generation demonstrations will be held on site.

Drawn to the Summit @ The Warhol Museum (Presented with The Toonseum)

  • “The cartoons in Drawn to the Summit will highlight the work of the leading cartoonists from the G-20 nations and will provide an alternative perspective on G-20 themes such as the global economy and its impact on the environment, human rights, world trade, etc. This exhibition offers the public an opportunity to view a diversity of cartooning styles worldwide and see the important role editorial cartoons plays in this global conversation.”
  • Sept. 18 – Oct. 18, 2009
  • curated by Pittsburgh Post-Gazette editorial cartoonist Rob Rogers and art historian Sylvia Rhor

Franktuary is OPEN all week! Eat local for the G20!

Visit and enjoy a Welcome to Pittsburgh special: our organic, grass-finished Locavore frank, 2 pierogies, and a Natrona Bottling Company soda for just $8!

Visit us during our extended hours on your day(s?) off: Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from 10 am to 5 pm.

Though we are downtown, 325 Oliver Avenue is well outside both the hard and soft security perimeters. Your best bet is to walk or bike from the North Side or the South Side, though we hope there will also be some access points from the Strip District. Check out for cyclist access information.

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