aquinasprime: (baking)
I made minion cupcakes for my daughter's "un-birthday" at school. I thought I'd post how I made them for others to use later. My fondant and frosting proportions are for 24 cupcakes, so adjust accordingly.
I'm including pictures, so the tutorial will be below the cut.

Instructions with pictures )
aquinasprime: (Kaylee)
I think it's been forever since I really posted anything.

If you aren't a facebook friend of mine, or haven't been following me too closely, you probably don't know that I am embarking on something life-changing. I've never been really happy with my weight, not since I was in high school. The numbers on the scale have been creeping up steadily and it's been making me sadder and sadder.

At the end of August, I went to the doctors. I'd hit a new high on the scale. And I reached my limit. So I joined Spark People. Then last weekend I joined a gym. So far, I have lost 15 lbs with a goal of losing at least 80 lbs. I'll be happy with 80, but really I'd like to lose about 110.

The gym I joined has a few really nice features, but the one I like best is that all of the classes are included. This means I don't have to register to attend a class, but I can just show up whenever I can. With my schedule that is a huge bonus and means I might actually use them. Plus, the gym is two storefronts down from the dance studio where A takes class. So I have an hour every Saturday to spend there while she takes her Tap class.

I tried a Zumba class today with much trepidation. I haven't done any real exercising since before A was born (and she's 5), so the concept of a 60 min class scared me. It was great! I wasn't the only first timer, nor was I the largest person there. Everyone worked at their own level and the instructors were super encouraging. So were the other class attendees. I actually made it through the whole class. It felt great.

Meme

Apr. 25th, 2013 08:35 pm
aquinasprime: (Merlin and Snape?!?!?!?!)
I saw this meme on [personal profile] quoththeravyn and thought it looked like fun.

If you want to play, leave a comment and I'll give you an age and you answer these questions about your age.

I was given 23.

I lived in: My parents house. Yes I still lived at home at 23. I have always had a good relationship with my parents so this made sense to me. I had all of the freedom of living in an apartment on my own, but the perks of being at home (no rent, laundry). I was going to medical school and surviving on loans, so being able to save on rent/food really helped me keep my debt manageable.

I drove: A 1994 white Jeep Grand Cherokee. At this point it was very old, but had very low mileage on it.

I was in a relationship with: My husband. We had just started dating for the second time (long story) and would be engaged before I turned 24.

I feared: failing. Medical school was an incredible challenge. I was gearing up to take the first part of the medical boards (there are three parts), and keeping my grades up so I could pursue a competitive residency if I wanted one.

I worked at: La Marina, a seafood restaurant owned by a friend of the family. I had worked their briefly during college, as a busperson and later in the kitchen working the fryers. I wanted some extra cash and had Friday afternoons free, so I worked from 3-9ish in the kitchen taking phone orders and cooking all of the fish fries, clams, shrimp, scallps, french fries, etc for both the dining room and take-out orders. It turned out to be great preparation for working in an operating room.

I wanted to be: At this point, I was still firmly convinced I wanted to do a residency in opthalmology and a cornea fellowship. I was still in lectures at this point, so I hadn't discovered the joy that was anesthesiology yet.
aquinasprime: (Default)
Sorry it took so long to post the answers - real life got in the way.

1. "You shouldn't believe all that banana oil that Dora Bailey and the columnists dish out. Now try and get this straight. There is nothing between us." Singin' in the Rain

2. "One thing about living in Santa Carla I never could stomach, all the damn vampires." The Lost Boys guessed correctly by krasnoludek

3. "I have just met you, and I love you." Up guessed correctly by hkellick

4. "You're not a brother, you're not a friend. I don't want to know you or what you do. I don't want to see you at the hotels, I don't want you near my house. When you see our mother, I want to know a day in advance, so I won't be there. You understand? " The Godfather, Part II

5. "The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who would attempt to poison and destroy My brothers. And you will know My name is the Lord when I lay My vengeance upon thee. "
Pulp Fiction guessed correctly by krasnoludek

6. "Certainty of death. Small chance of success. What are we waiting for? " Lord of the Rings: Return of the King

7. "Look at me... you have your mother's eyes. " Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II guessed correctly by twistedchick

8. "Bad dates." Raiders of the Lost Ark guessed correctly by krasnoludek

9. "After that my guess is that you will never hear from him again. The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he did not exist. And like that... he is gone." The Usual Suspects guessed correctly by krasnoludek


10. "People don't like to be meddled with. We tell them what to do, what to think, don't run, don't walk. We're in their homes and in their heads and we haven't the right. We're meddlesome." Serenity
aquinasprime: (Default)
Haven't done one of these in a while. Name the movie associated with these quotes. Answers will be posted later.

1. "You shouldn't believe all that banana oil that Dora Bailey and the columnists dish out. Now try and get this straight. There is nothing between us."

2. "One thing about living in Santa Carla I never could stomach, all the damn vampires."

3. "I have just met you, and I love you."

4. "You're not a brother, you're not a friend. I don't want to know you or what you do. I don't want to see you at the hotels, I don't want you near my house. When you see our mother, I want to know a day in advance, so I won't be there. You understand? "

5. "The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who would attempt to poison and destroy My brothers. And you will know My name is the Lord when I lay My vengeance upon thee. "

6. "Certainty of death. Small chance of success. What are we waiting for? "

7. "Look at me... you have your mother's eyes. "

8. "Bad dates."

9. "After that my guess is that you will never hear from him again. The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he did not exist. And like that... he is gone."

10. "People don't like to be meddled with. We tell them what to do, what to think, don't run, don't walk. We're in their homes and in their heads and we haven't the right. We're meddlesome."
aquinasprime: (Default)
Note: this post, reposted each year at this time, is here as a part of the 2996 Project, a tribute to all the victims of September 11th. Please visit this link for more stories.



Everyone remembers where they were that fateful morning. I was at UB attending classes at medical school. By 10 am classes were cancelled and I was at Peter's (whom I was engaged to at the time) parent's house. That afternoon, there was his my parents' house, as in many places, a flurry of telephone calls. Everyone was calling everyone else to make sure they were alright.

Our friend AM, who once dated Peter's best friend Pat, called Peter up. She asked if he had heard anything from Pat's family, since his uncle works in the WTC. He said he hadn't, and proceeded to call his family. Peter spoke with Pat's mother, who told him a harrowing story.

Pat's uncle, Sean Rooney, was indeed in the second tower of the WTC. When the first plane hit the first tower, he and his coworkers were told to stay put.

When the second plane hit, they were trapped.

He called his wife, Beverly Eckert. They spent some time talking. Finally, he told her that it was time to say goodbye.

A few seconds later, she heard an explosion, followed by a whoosh. Suddenly, the line went dead.

She turned to her television to see her worst fears confirmed.


A few days later, a memorial service was held at Pat's parents' house in East Aurora. Many stories were told. Peter spoke with some of his family members to get a few more. Here are a handful, which may perhaps shed some light on this man's life.

Sean Rooney was not a man to waste time. Sean Rooney was not shy. He loved people, he was very outgoing, and he always had one question on his mind: "What can I do to help?"

In the winter of 2000, Sean & his wife drove in from Connecticut to visit. Pat's parents noticed a large object on top of their car. It seems that the last time they were in town, Sean had decided that their bathroom needed a new vanity. He secretly took measurements. Upon his return to Connecticut he proceeded to build one. He then installed it, along with some new tiling. It was called a Christmas present.

He was one of the last true Jacks-of-all-trades. He was known on sight at his local Home Depot. At his own home, their dining room holds a gorgeous table which he built. Every cabinet in their kitchen was installed by him.

His talents also extended to cooking as well. He did all the cooking. One Thanksgiving he made a Turkey dinner for 17 people. Nobody ever turned down one of his meals.

His interests also included golf. Golf was, however, apparently about the only thing he wasn't good at. Nonetheless, he enjoyed it immensely. One day, on a trip to Nantucket, he and Pat's father hit the course. No more than 4 or 5 holes were played before a thick fog rolled in. Sean decided that the course diagram on the scorecards should be accurate enough for navigational purposes. As long as they stayed on the green, they could simply follow the path in the dew to find their balls. They used this method to play the next 4 holes before finally giving up.

One couldn't say enough about his generosity. A friend of his, who lived near him in Connecticut, took a job in New York City. His new abode did not have room for any of his furniture, leaving him with nothing. Sean took his outdoor furniture, which was padded for comfort, and one day drove in and said "here."

Above all, he never dismissed anyone. Not even the person who bagged his groceries escaped his attention. Everyone was treated as a person who was worthy of personal contact. No person was overlooked.

One day, Pat's parents were on a visit to Sean & Beverly's home in Connecticut. Outside the local supermarket, a street person was pushing a cart full of cans. He hit the curb, overturning the cart, as well as himself. His cans rolled out into the middle of traffic. Without hesitation, Sean stepped out into traffic. With one hand, he held the traffic back. With the other, he helped the others load the cans back into the man's cart.

Most of all, through the memorial service and speaking with his family, I saw the love. I saw the love that he had for his family, friends, and human beings in general. I felt the love that he inspired in all those who knew him. Most of all, I felt myself to be a lesser person for never having known him.

Today, his name lives on. With the help of the Jesuits, Sean's family established a scholarship at Canisius High School, which was Sean's alma mater, as well as Pat's and Peter's. This scholarship goes to an incoming freshman who either graduated from the Catholic Academy of West Buffalo, or lives on the West Side of Buffalo.

This scholarship was dedicated at a ceremony in his honor. It turned out that Sean's high school friend, Tom Fontana, who had watched the entire event from his home in New Jersey, wanted to help out. He brought along a movie he had just completed, Judas, and it was screened at the event. Also at the event, the first student was given the scholarship. This student had fled with his family from Rwanda in 1995. His parents were from different warring tribes. He was the ideal first recipient.

Sean Rooney's legacy continues to touch the lives of those who knew him, and many who never knew him. He was a great man, whose life was cut short by blind hatred. His memory and legacy, however, will live on long after those who murdered him are forgotten. Standing in contrast to those who hate, is the memory of a man who knew only love. Decades from now, when the names of the violent are confined to grade school textbooks, his legacy will touch the hearts and lives of many deserving young students in the hallowed halls of Canisius. Even then, those who knew him will remember a man of infinite kindness, infinite generosity, and infinite love. Today, let us all take a moment to remember Sean Rooney. He was what we all aspire to be.

A tribute video of him is posted here.

Update: 2009

The Sean Rooney Memorial Scholarship has been running quite smoothly for several years now. We ran into Beverly, who we always knew simply as Aunt Bev, at the funeral of Peter's mentor, Fr. James P. Higgins. She was attending with the family of the first scholarship recipient. Fr. Higgins had been instrumental in setting up the scholarship. We spoke of how life was going. We had only 6 months earlier brought our daughter into the world - on the very same day as Pat and his wife Melonie. We were sad that Fr. Higgins had never had a chance to meet either of them.

Only two weeks later, we awoke in the morning to hear that there had been a plane crash near the Buffalo Airport. We were shocked, but didn't think much of it. When we went downstairs to eat breakfast, I checked FaceBook, and saw Melonie's status that she was still shocked about the news. We didn't speak what we were both thinking. We didn't have to. A few minutes later, Fox & Friends announced that Beverly had been on Flight 3407. The statement from her sister, Pat's mother, was "We know she was on the plane; now she is with Sean."

Peter's own post from the time is here. The official website is found here. She was instrumental in continuing efforts to determine exactly what mistakes allowed the murderers to do what they did. Her sisters now carry on that work. Never did any of them ever seek vengeance. The only mission was to make sure that no one else had to suffer what they did. Any who knew them are blessed. We continue to be blessed by the knowledge that their work will live on. What neither Sauron, Voldemort, Palpatine, nor the White Queen understood, they have proven: love does indeed conquer all.

Updated 9:02 PM 9/11/09 to correct flight number

ETA: 1:58pm 9/11/10 This was originally posted at my old blog by my husband. I'm am reposting here as this is my primary service, so I don't lose it and I changed pronouns/details to reflect me, not my husband.

ETA: 8:45am 9/11/11 This year, as part of the 10th anniversary, NPR has been running a series about those who died, in the words of their family members. "Aunt" Bev was able to record her story to StoryCorps (who is collecting these stories for all) five years after Sean's death. You can find her story here. I write this update as I am listening to the litany of names of the lives lost.

Never forget

ETA: 9/11/12 - broken links for photo of Sean and video tribute fixed
aquinasprime: (Merlin and Snape?!?!?!?!)
Is anyone here on pottermore? I'm getting stuck on the first potions lesson where you have to practice a potion. I can't seem to look at the second page of the instructions and when I try to follow the instructions I do have, I can't find my wand anywhere on the screen. I'm using Safari as my browser.

I'd appreciate any suggestions. If you want to friend me there let me know in the comments and I'll PM you my name.

I managed to get sorted into Slytherin.

Edited to add Slytherin icon
aquinasprime: (Default)
Note: this post, reposted each year at this time, is here as a part of the 2996 Project, a tribute to all the victims of September 11th. Please visit this link for more stories.



Everyone remembers where they were that fateful morning. I was at UB attending classes at medical school. By 10 am classes were cancelled and I was at Peter's (whom I was engaged to at the time) parent's house. That afternoon, there was his my parents' house, as in many places, a flurry of telephone calls. Everyone was calling everyone else to make sure they were alright.

Our friend AM, who once dated Peter's best friend Pat, called Peter up. She asked if he had heard anything from Pat's family, since his uncle works in the WTC. He said he hadn't, and proceeded to call his family. Peter spoke with Pat's mother, who told him a harrowing story.

Pat's uncle, Sean Rooney, was indeed in the second tower of the WTC. When the first plane hit the first tower, he and his coworkers were told to stay put.

When the second plane hit, they were trapped.

He called his wife, Beverly Eckert. They spent some time talking. Finally, he told her that it was time to say goodbye.

A few seconds later, she heard an explosion, followed by a whoosh. Suddenly, the line went dead.

She turned to her television to see her worst fears confirmed.


A few days later, a memorial service was held at Pat's parents' house in East Aurora. Many stories were told. Peter spoke with some of his family members to get a few more. Here are a handful, which may perhaps shed some light on this man's life.

Sean Rooney was not a man to waste time. Sean Rooney was not shy. He loved people, he was very outgoing, and he always had one question on his mind: "What can I do to help?"

In the winter of 2000, Sean & his wife drove in from Connecticut to visit. Pat's parents noticed a large object on top of their car. It seems that the last time they were in town, Sean had decided that their bathroom needed a new vanity. He secretly took measurements. Upon his return to Connecticut he proceeded to build one. He then installed it, along with some new tiling. It was called a Christmas present.

He was one of the last true Jacks-of-all-trades. He was known on sight at his local Home Depot. At his own home, their dining room holds a gorgeous table which he built. Every cabinet in their kitchen was installed by him.

His talents also extended to cooking as well. He did all the cooking. One Thanksgiving he made a Turkey dinner for 17 people. Nobody ever turned down one of his meals.

His interests also included golf. Golf was, however, apparently about the only thing he wasn't good at. Nonetheless, he enjoyed it immensely. One day, on a trip to Nantucket, he and Pat's father hit the course. No more than 4 or 5 holes were played before a thick fog rolled in. Sean decided that the course diagram on the scorecards should be accurate enough for navigational purposes. As long as they stayed on the green, they could simply follow the path in the dew to find their balls. They used this method to play the next 4 holes before finally giving up.

One couldn't say enough about his generosity. A friend of his, who lived near him in Connecticut, took a job in New York City. His new abode did not have room for any of his furniture, leaving him with nothing. Sean took his outdoor furniture, which was padded for comfort, and one day drove in and said "here."

Above all, he never dismissed anyone. Not even the person who bagged his groceries escaped his attention. Everyone was treated as a person who was worthy of personal contact. No person was overlooked.

One day, Pat's parents were on a visit to Sean & Beverly's home in Connecticut. Outside the local supermarket, a street person was pushing a cart full of cans. He hit the curb, overturning the cart, as well as himself. His cans rolled out into the middle of traffic. Without hesitation, Sean stepped out into traffic. With one hand, he held the traffic back. With the other, he helped the others load the cans back into the man's cart.

Most of all, through the memorial service and speaking with his family, I saw the love. I saw the love that he had for his family, friends, and human beings in general. I felt the love that he inspired in all those who knew him. Most of all, I felt myself to be a lesser person for never having known him.

Today, his name lives on. With the help of the Jesuits, Sean's family established a scholarship at Canisius High School, which was Sean's alma mater, as well as Pat's and Peter's. This scholarship goes to an incoming freshman who either graduated from the Catholic Academy of West Buffalo, or lives on the West Side of Buffalo.

This scholarship was dedicated at a ceremony in his honor. It turned out that Sean's high school friend, Tom Fontana, who had watched the entire event from his home in New Jersey, wanted to help out. He brought along a movie he had just completed, Judas, and it was screened at the event. Also at the event, the first student was given the scholarship. This student had fled with his family from Rwanda in 1995. His parents were from different warring tribes. He was the ideal first recipient.

Sean Rooney's legacy continues to touch the lives of those who knew him, and many who never knew him. He was a great man, whose life was cut short by blind hatred. His memory and legacy, however, will live on long after those who murdered him are forgotten. Standing in contrast to those who hate, is the memory of a man who knew only love. Decades from now, when the names of the violent are confined to grade school textbooks, his legacy will touch the hearts and lives of many deserving young students in the hallowed halls of Canisius. Even then, those who knew him will remember a man of infinite kindness, infinite generosity, and infinite love. Today, let us all take a moment to remember Sean Rooney. He was what we all aspire to be.

A tribute video of him is posted here.

Update: 2009

The Sean Rooney Memorial Scholarship has been running quite smoothly for several years now. We ran into Beverly, who we always knew simply as Aunt Bev, at the funeral of Peter's mentor, Fr. James P. Higgins. She was attending with the family of the first scholarship recipient. Fr. Higgins had been instrumental in setting up the scholarship. We spoke of how life was going. We had only 6 months earlier brought our daughter into the world - on the very same day as Pat and his wife Melonie. We were sad that Fr. Higgins had never had a chance to meet either of them.

Only two weeks later, we awoke in the morning to hear that there had been a plane crash near the Buffalo Airport. We were shocked, but didn't think much of it. When we went downstairs to eat breakfast, I checked FaceBook, and saw Melonie's status that she was still shocked about the news. We didn't speak what we were both thinking. We didn't have to. A few minutes later, Fox & Friends announced that Beverly had been on Flight 3407. The statement from her sister, Pat's mother, was "We know she was on the plane; now she is with Sean."

Peter's own post from the time is here. The official website is found here. She was instrumental in continuing efforts to determine exactly what mistakes allowed the murderers to do what they did. Her sisters now carry on that work. Never did any of them ever seek vengeance. The only mission was to make sure that no one else had to suffer what they did. Any who knew them are blessed. We continue to be blessed by the knowledge that their work will live on. What neither Sauron, Voldemort, Palpatine, nor the White Queen understood, they have proven: love does indeed conquer all.

Updated 9:02 PM 9/11/09 to correct flight number

ETA: 1:58pm 9/11/10 This was originally posted at my old blog by my husband. I'm am reposting here as this is my primary service, so I don't lose it and I changed pronouns/details to reflect me, not my husband.

ETA: 8:45am 9/11/11 This year, as part of the 10th anniversary, NPR has been running a series about those who died, in the words of their family members. "Aunt" Bev was able to record her story to StoryCorps (who is collecting these stories for all) five years after Sean's death. You can find her story here. I write this update as I am listening to the litany of names of the lives lost.

Never forget
aquinasprime: (Sabres)
I'm sleep deprived due to work and can't form super coherent sentences, so in lieu of an actual post I present my list of random things flitting through my mind right now:

The best thing about having your pager pager go off at 7:20 in the morning after being in the OR until midnight the night before, is having them tell you that the 9am case you were getting ready to go in for is cancelled.

One of the coolest things about my job is the people I meet - like the Korean War Bronze Star recipient I got to talk to last night.

Drug of Choice Coffee has an awesome website and three really cool names for their coffee. But the only one worth drinking is Magnolia Lane.

My arm may regret it on Monday, but I'm going to bake baguettes tomorrow despite the fact the my biceps tendinitis is still acting up. Maybe I should see someone about that.

The federal government avoided a shutdown with almost 39 Billion in cuts.

My beloved Sabers have a new owner, a new focus, and clinched a playoff spot last night.

The princess is turning into a hockey fan - she has asked to wear Sabres shirt for the third day in a row today and doesn't complain if we watch the hockey game instead of Mickey Mouse or listen to the game in the car rather than her music.

Should I be frightened that bacon appears to be the princess's favorite food?

I have a Darth Tater (finally!) thanks to a really awesome mom I met.

I got a thank you/update email from Aaron Bartnicki, the man I talked about in my last posting. That felt really cool.

I got an account on AO3 (I'm drnic). I haven't posted anything (yet) but I will once my two current fanfics (one being typed in to email to my beta, one still being written) are ready for reading.

I found a willing beta reader for my fanfic outlet, who read some of my work in progress and told me she liked it (and she's not even in the fandom I'm writing for).

Two of our friends, who currently live in France, are moving back to the US so we get to see more of them. Yay!

I have of late been obsessed with home improvement shows.
aquinasprime: (R2 dreamsheep)
I don't do this often. Actually I think this is the first bleg for donations I have ever posted.

As many of you know, I work in a local hospital. Two members of the operating room staff where I work are sisters. Five years ago, their brother was seriously injured in a car accident. The spinal cord injury he suffered left him wheelchair bound with some use of his arms. Since the time of the accident he has recieved a business degree and raised his now 10-year-old daughter.

He has recently learned of a new rehabilitation center in Atlanta, Georgia that is do new styles of therapy that may allow him to regain mobility. However, this therapy is labeled experimental, and as such all of his costs will be out of pocket.

Last Friday his friends and family held a benefit to help defray these costs. They have also set up a website where you can make donations directly and learn a little bit more about him. If you have some extra money, please consider sending some his way.
aquinasprime: (Default)
Empire Magazine's 50 Greatest TV Shows MEME: - (I don't agree that these are the 50 greatest shows, but eh...)

Bold the shows you watch/used to watch in their first run.
Italicize the shows you've seen at least one episode of.
Underline the shows you didn't watch when it premiered, but in syndication/DVD/online/etc you've seen most or all the episodes.
Post your answers.


50. Quantum Leap
49. Prison Break
48. Veronica Mars
47. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
46. Sex & The City
45. Farscape
44. Cracker
43. Star Trek
42. Only Fools and Horses
41. Band of Brothers
40. Life on Mars
39. Monty Python's Flying Circus
38. Curb Your Enthusiasm
37. Star Trek: The Next Generation
36. Father Ted
35. Alias
34. Frasier
33. CSI
32. Babylon 5
31. Deadwood
30. Dexter
29. ER
28. Fawlty Towers
27. Six Feet Under
26. Red Dwarf
25. Futurama
24. Twin Peaks
23. The Office
22. The Shield
21. Angel
20. Blackadder
19. Scrubs
18. Arrested Development
17. South Park
16. Doctor Who
15. Heroes
14. Firefly
13. Battlestar Galactica
12. Family Guy
11. Seinfeld
10. Spaced
09. The X-Files
08. The Wire
07. Friends
06. 24
05. Lost
04. The West Wing
03. The Sopranos - until I stopped having HBO
02. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
01. The Simpsons

Bleg x 2

Feb. 5th, 2011 06:07 pm
aquinasprime: (R2 dreamsheep)
Bleg #1 - I have recently gotten into writing fanfiction. I am looking for a beta-reader. If you're interested, please feel free to comment or message me.

Bleg #2 - I will most likely be sharing some of my fanfiction here (and possibly other fiction I write if I really start writing again). I suck at making icons and would love a writing icon if someone is willing to make it.

Thanks bunches.
aquinasprime: (Danish Sheep)
So I have spent the last half hour navigating a website entirely in Danish (pretty impressive for me since I only understand/speak a few words and have actually no formal training in the language). I'm trying to buy the 2010 Candleholder Set from Georg Jensen (to add to the others we have on our tree every year). The website I ordered the bulk of ours from does not have any candleholders this year. So I decided to go straight to the source - Georg Jensen's website. The US website dosen't carry the candleholders. So I went to the Danish site. I found them, put them in my cart and started the checkout process. Then I found out they won't ship to the US. So I tried the Canadian site, which was in English, but still won't ship to the US. The UK site has them, but they are out of stock so I couldn't even see if they would ship to the US (I doubt they would).

I'm frustrated that the US site doesn't sell the candleholders, but I'm sure there are very few people left in this country who would consider placing candles on a tree (and an even smaller number that would actually light them like we do). My BIL and SIL would also like a few more for their tree. My problem is trying to get them here.

I've got an email out via FB to one friend who lives in Denmark, to see if I can ship the order to her house and then have her ship it here.

Does anyone out there have a better suggestion or any idea of how to help?

Frustration

Nov. 2nd, 2010 09:39 pm
aquinasprime: (Men in Tights/huh)
Reason number 4,627,893 why I think that everything from the Western end of New York State through Syracuse should split off and become a separate state.

Today I voted. I consider myself to be a very politically aware person. I make every effort to maintain a working knowledge of the issues, I can tell you who my congresscritters/representatives are at the state and federal level, I've never missed an election since I turned 18.

Something happened today that really pissed me off. I realized when I went to vote for the Attorney General in this election, I had absolutely no idea who any of the candidates were. Until I read their names on the ballots, I couldn't have told you what their names were. So why did this piss me off? Because it means they didn't bother to do ANY campaigning in my end of the state.

This frustrates me to no end. And it happens all the time. For any major statewide elected position, it has been proven time and again, that all a candidate needs to do is focus on NYC and they can get elected. And quite frankly, I'm sick of being ignored.

I live in a state that is essentially a rural state with a small number of densely populated areas (one of which contains about half the population of the state as a whole). This means they get what they want - money, laws that only make logical sense if you live in an area that densely populated, improvement projects, etc.

Despite having an energy-generating waterfall practically in my backyard, I have the second highest residential energy cost in the country (see here for details (numbers are for July 2010. The only state with higher cost - Hawai'i. According to an article published in Dec 2009 in the Buffalo News, more than half of the power generated by the hydroelectric plant in Niagara Falls is sent out of this area, some of it outer of state. To quote the article "The News found that the Niagara plant is the nation's second-largest producer of hydropower, the equivalent of a huge, bottomless oil field in our backyard that produces electricity at a fraction of the cost of other fuels.

But, The News found, state law strips the Buffalo Niagara region of any inherent claim to the hydropower generated here; federal legislation diverts most of it elsewhere: About 60 percent of the electricity generated at the Niagara plant last year was transmitted out of Erie and Niagara counties."

The worst part is that none of this will ever change. I work 60+ hours a week to send a ridiculous percentage of my salary in taxes to, essentially New York City, only to have to watch my local representatives beg for the last dregs of coffee in the state's cup. And watch the city I love die a slow and painful death.

Remind me again why I live here?
aquinasprime: (R2 dreamsheep)
Note: this post, reposted each year at this time, is here as a part of the 2996 Project, a tribute to all the victims of September 11th. Please visit this link for more stories.



Everyone remembers where they were that fateful morning. I was at UB attending classes at medical school. By 10 am classes were cancelled and I was at Peter's (whom I was engaged to at the time) parent's house. That afternoon, there was his my parents' house, as in many places, a flurry of telephone calls. Everyone was calling everyone else to make sure they were alright.

Our friend AM, who once dated Peter's best friend Pat, called Peter up. She asked if he had heard anything from Pat's family, since his uncle works in the WTC. He said he hadn't, and proceeded to call his family. Peter spoke with Pat's mother, who told him a harrowing story.

Pat's uncle, Sean Rooney, was indeed in the second tower of the WTC. When the first plane hit the first tower, he and his coworkers were told to stay put.

When the second plane hit, they were trapped.

He called his wife, Beverly Eckert. They spent some time talking. Finally, he told her that it was time to say goodbye.

A few seconds later, she heard an explosion, followed by a whoosh. Suddenly, the line went dead.

She turned to her television to see her worst fears confirmed.


A few days later, a memorial service was held at Pat's parents' house in East Aurora. Many stories were told. Peter spoke with some of his family members to get a few more. Here are a handful, which may perhaps shed some light on this man's life.

Sean Rooney was not a man to waste time. Sean Rooney was not shy. He loved people, he was very outgoing, and he always had one question on his mind: "What can I do to help?"

In the winter of 2000, Sean & his wife drove in from Connecticut to visit. Pat's parents noticed a large object on top of their car. It seems that the last time they were in town, Sean had decided that their bathroom needed a new vanity. He secretly took measurements. Upon his return to Connecticut he proceeded to build one. He then installed it, along with some new tiling. It was called a Christmas present.

He was one of the last true Jacks-of-all-trades. He was known on sight at his local Home Depot. At his own home, their dining room holds a gorgeous table which he built. Every cabinet in their kitchen was installed by him.

His talents also extended to cooking as well. He did all the cooking. One Thanksgiving he made a Turkey dinner for 17 people. Nobody ever turned down one of his meals.

His interests also included golf. Golf was, however, apparently about the only thing he wasn't good at. Nonetheless, he enjoyed it immensely. One day, on a trip to Nantucket, he and Pat's father hit the course. No more than 4 or 5 holes were played before a thick fog rolled in. Sean decided that the course diagram on the scorecards should be accurate enough for navigational purposes. As long as they stayed on the green, they could simply follow the path in the dew to find their balls. They used this method to play the next 4 holes before finally giving up.

One couldn't say enough about his generosity. A friend of his, who lived near him in Connecticut, took a job in New York City. His new abode did not have room for any of his furniture, leaving him with nothing. Sean took his outdoor furniture, which was padded for comfort, and one day drove in and said "here."

Above all, he never dismissed anyone. Not even the person who bagged his groceries escaped his attention. Everyone was treated as a person who was worthy of personal contact. No person was overlooked.

One day, Pat's parents were on a visit to Sean & Beverly's home in Connecticut. Outside the local supermarket, a street person was pushing a cart full of cans. He hit the curb, overturning the cart, as well as himself. His cans rolled out into the middle of traffic. Without hesitation, Sean stepped out into traffic. With one hand, he held the traffic back. With the other, he helped the others load the cans back into the man's cart.

Most of all, through the memorial service and speaking with his family, I saw the love. I saw the love that he had for his family, friends, and human beings in general. I felt the love that he inspired in all those who knew him. Most of all, I felt myself to be a lesser person for never having known him.

Today, his name lives on. With the help of the Jesuits, Sean's family established a scholarship at Canisius High School, which was Sean's alma mater, as well as Pat's and Peter's. This scholarship goes to an incoming freshman who either graduated from the Catholic Academy of West Buffalo, or lives on the West Side of Buffalo.

This scholarship was dedicated at a ceremony in his honor. It turned out that Sean's high school friend, Tom Fontana, who had watched the entire event from his home in New Jersey, wanted to help out. He brought along a movie he had just completed, Judas, and it was screened at the event. Also at the event, the first student was given the scholarship. This student had fled with his family from Rwanda in 1995. His parents were from different warring tribes. He was the ideal first recipient.

Sean Rooney's legacy continues to touch the lives of those who knew him, and many who never knew him. He was a great man, whose life was cut short by blind hatred. His memory and legacy, however, will live on long after those who murdered him are forgotten. Standing in contrast to those who hate, is the memory of a man who knew only love. Decades from now, when the names of the violent are confined to grade school textbooks, his legacy will touch the hearts and lives of many deserving young students in the hallowed halls of Canisius. Even then, those who knew him will remember a man of infinite kindness, infinite generosity, and infinite love. Today, let us all take a moment to remember Sean Rooney. He was what we all aspire to be.

A tribute video of him is posted here.

Update: 2009

The Sean Rooney Memorial Scholarship has been running quite smoothly for several years now. We ran into Beverly, who we always knew simply as Aunt Bev, at the funeral of Peter's mentor, Fr. James P. Higgins. She was attending with the family of the first scholarship recipient. Fr. Higgins had been instrumental in setting up the scholarship. We spoke of how life was going. We had only 6 months earlier brought our daughter into the world - on the very same day as Pat and his wife Melonie. We were sad that Fr. Higgins had never had a chance to meet either of them.

Only two weeks later, we awoke in the morning to hear that there had been a plane crash near the Buffalo Airport. We were shocked, but didn't think much of it. When we went downstairs to eat breakfast, I checked FaceBook, and saw Melonie's status that she was still shocked about the news. We didn't speak what we were both thinking. We didn't have to. A few minutes later, Fox & Friends announced that Beverly had been on Flight 3407. The statement from her sister, Pat's mother, was "We know she was on the plane; now she is with Sean."

Peter's own post from the time is here. The official website is found here. She was instrumental in continuing efforts to determine exactly what mistakes allowed the murderers to do what they did. Her sisters now carry on that work. Never did any of them ever seek vengeance. The only mission was to make sure that no one else had to suffer what they did. Any who knew them are blessed. We continue to be blessed by the knowledge that their work will live on. What neither Sauron, Voldemort, Palpatine, nor the White Queen understood, they have proven: love does indeed conquer all.

Updated 9:02 PM 9/11/09 to correct flight number

ETA: 1:58pm 9/11/10 This was originally posted at my old blog by my husband. I'm am reposting here as this is my primary service, so I don't lose it and I changed pronouns/details to reflect me, not my husband.
aquinasprime: (Good is Dumb/Spaceballs)
So I saw this video linked on two different medblogs. It is absolutely hysterical. I seriously think that I have had this conversation before. I already posted it to my facebook, but it I needed to share it here too.

Song Meme

Jul. 21st, 2010 04:00 pm
aquinasprime: (Canisius Sheep)
Comment on this entry and I will give you a letter. Name 5 songs you love starting with that letter.

[personal profile] phoenixsong gave me F. Unlike her, I am too lazy to find YouTube links for the songs so you're on your own to try listen to them.

1. Feel it Turn by Great Big Sea
2. Friends in Low Places by Garth Brooks
3. Flowers by Brad Paisley
4. Fly Me to the Moon by Frank Sinatra
5. For Good from Wicked

Book Meme

Apr. 18th, 2010 06:44 pm
aquinasprime: (Canisius Sheep)
Like several others on my reading page, I'm pretty sure I've done this before, but I'll do it again.

Bold the ones you've read COMPLETELY, italicize the ones you've read part of. Watching the movie or the cartoon doesn't count. Abridged versions don't count either. BTW, according to the BBC if you've read 7 of these, you are above the average.


1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings-JRR Tolkein
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter Series- J.K. Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty-Four - George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations-Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D'Ubervilles-Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy- Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland-Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34 Emma - Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner-Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli's Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi-Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale of Two Cities-Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones- Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones's Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Inferno - Dante
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madam Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte's Web - EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down -Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo


42 read and 4 started but not finished. Not bad.

NYC Trip

Apr. 18th, 2010 02:50 pm
aquinasprime: (Mace Windu sheep)
Just got back home from our anniversary trip. We had a blast. We ended up staying at the Marriot Marquis Times Square (which was literally across from the theater). Saturday morning we wandered up and down 5th avenue and ended up spending two hours in Saks. P got two shirts, we got A a cute dress, bought perfume for both moms for mothers day and I got these shoes . I'm still a little shocked about the purchase (especially since they cost more than my wedding dress). I don't think my heart or stomach (or bank account) could take buying these on a regular basis, but my god are they comfortable (and cute!). I've always wanted a pair of designer shoes.

Sat night we went to dinner, bought a round a drinks for 5 cute military girls on leave and having a night out. Then we headed to see the Addams Family with Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth. The show was fabulous. I really can't remember the last time I laughed so hard at a show (I couldn't breathe at some points). Two sections of dialog that stand out (approximations because I'm not sure I remembered them verbatim:

This house has been in our family since my ancestor Alfonso D'Enormous was deeded the land by Queen Isabella for services rendered.

Who's the man in the dress? That's Aunt Herman. He's Wednesday's uncle twice removed. They removed it once and it grew back, so they removed it again.


I pre-ordered the soundtrack (it won't be available until June 8). I have to say, despite having her hips replaced a few years ago, Bebe Neuwirth still has it. I'm in awe of how good she looked and how well she dances.

Best Anniversary so far.
aquinasprime: (Kaylee)
I'm continuing my pattern of posting about my vacation with a daily update.

day 3 )

May 2014

S M T W T F S
    123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
252627 28293031

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Nov. 28th, 2014 10:34 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios