Thursday, April 29, 2010

I love paint.

I do.

Paint thrills me. You want to know why?

Because it can transform this:

Into this:

I love this table. I can't believe that I almost passed this beauty over!

I love the rectangular shape and the pedestal legs because now I can put it under the window.

Look! Another picture with my vacuum cleaner in the background! I am a pro aren't I?

I ended up moving the girl's craft table to the opposite end of the room because I really wanted to put this bench under the window.

Here's a long view of the room:

This is the wall opposite the table.

I have never loved this room so much. I have to find some old pictures to show you when this room was painted purple, enclosed with baby gates and filled with toys. {Shudder!}

I have one more little treat to show you!

I went to Global Thrift yesterday in search of clothes which fit and found this!

A chippy old easel! It is an easel on both sides which the girls where immediately taken with.

The price of this beauty? 3.99!

There is one danger of solitary junking. Sometimes I buy really weird clothes. Lately I have been attracted to 1960's polyester. I do not know why.

I think it was the crazy arms that did it. I'll see how the playground moms respond. Sometimes you have to take chances even if it means showing up in 45 year old polyester.

Monday, April 26, 2010

In which I am a freak...

Last week I had one of the most pathetic dreams of my life.

I dreamt about a table.

The past few times I've been to the junk store I saw a table. I kept being somewhat drawn to it. It had two pedestal legs and felt very solid. The top was pretty rough though- gouged and scratched. I looked at it and dismissed it- my mind was on finding clothes that fit, not hauling a table home.

Meanwhile, my subconscious had other plans. I think my subconscious was getting tired of the bubbles on the finish of my crappy Ikea dining room table because I had a dream, a dream in which all of my dining room table needs could be answered with this table.

When I woke up that morning I considered dropping everything to go get the table. Appointments be damned, my subconscious wants a table!

I have never felt like such a loser.

I chose to ignore the siren call of the table just to prove that I could. The table would float into my mind from time to time, but I had let it go.

Until Sunday.

On Sunday Lily, Nana and I went to the junk store and there was the table looking sad and needing a home. I inspected it closely. It was really well made, the right size for my dining room and only 24.99. After conferring with Nana I did the only thing a good little junkie could do. I took the legs off of it and brought it home.

Nice lines, huh?

Today I sanded it down and got on a few coats of primer. It needs another light sanding before I paint it white.

It's been a while since I've painted anything. Now I am back to having paint covered hands and arms.

It just feels right.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Where the hell has that woman been?

I know that you've been asking yourself this and dudes, I can only say that I have been busy doing grown up things like cleaning my pantry and preparing my tax documents.

Yesterday was particularly crazy because I did many things in one day!

First, I acquired a new piece of furniture. Well, new to me anyway. A friend was selling an amazing armoire for a pittance. I have been wanting one just like this for ages but they are both expensive and huge. I got lucky because not only was this friend selling the armoire on the cheap, they also have a van and offered to bring it over. Score!

The piece that had been in that spot was a short red armoire that really didn't fit the scale of the room. I am going to sell the red one. If you are local and interested let me know.

You'll also be happy to know that those wires under the chair are well hidden now.

After rearranging all of my knick knacks and fighting back the dust bunnies, I invited Amy over to view my new furniture and drink coffee. That's what people with grown-up-made-of-real-wood-was-not-assembled-from-a-kit people do.

After Amy left, my Fairy Stepmother arrived to babysit the children because David and I had plans to go out!

Yes! That's right! I left the house of my own free will!

Our good friend Geoff Edgers made a movie. He had this plan, this crazy nutso plan hatched out of a thwarted high school dream and mated with the onset of a mid life crisis. The demented offspring of the two was a sweet, tender and funny film about trying to reunite his favorite band The Kinks. Last night it played to a sold out house as part of the Independent Film Festival here in Boston. Of course it was a blast seeing so many of our friends in this film, but watching Geoff interview and play guitar with Sting, Robin Hitchcock and Zooey Dechanel was just amazing.

Also, he got to talk on the phone with John Cusack. Geoff said that they talked about The Kinks, but I know better. They were talking about me, my love of John and our impossible love.

Where was I?

Anyway, super duper fun film. And then the fun continued because there was an after party with two bands and food and dancing.

At point David knocked over the beer of a grizzled looking older man standing against the wall. David apologized and bought him a new beer. We couldn't believe it when ten minutes later that same man got up to play with the band. It was Graham Parker who happened to be in town playing and simply rocked the house to the ground.

We danced and laughed and then, please brace yourself, even though it was already after midnight, we went out to a bar with some friends afterwards. By the time we left to go home it was 1:30.

I just need to take a moment here to tell you how dashing my husband is. He is a gorgeous dancer, funny, sensitive and just so incredibly mine. We don't get out often, but when we do it's always a party.

Today I am very, very, very, deeply and traumatically tired. Every cell of my being is tired.

Also, my throat hurts.

None of this stopped me from having a junking triumph today, but that story will have to wait. David just brought me a cup of tea, I have two dogs snoring by my side and I need to go to bed.

More tomorrow!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Updates from my budget...

There was a time when I thought nothing, absolutely nothing of dropping $2 every day on coffee. I shudder to think of it now, my wanton fiscal behavior. These days I'm a Budgetnatrix and I watch every single penny that leaves my purse. And then I cry.

This poses a bit of a problem since my fat clothes old clothes no longer fit. I am slim but broke, whereas before I was fat and rich. Oh universe, why must you taunt me with your foul karma?

Anyway, I found a few things at the junk store, but I really don't have a lot that doesn't make me look like a bag lady. That's why today I went to Walmart.

That's right. You heard me. Walmart.

Target and its fancy Mossimo is just too pricey for this cheap girl so I packed Lily in the car and we headed to Walmart.

A funny aside about Walmart. When David and I first ran away to Maine together in 1996 we were seriously broke. Our apartment was really cool and funky and I loved it with my entire heart. However, it was drafty. Wind blowing through the cracks drafty. We'd take hot showers and put on three layers of clothes. When even that wasn't enough to keep us warm we'd go to Walmart where we could wander around without buying anything and warm up. Then we'd go home and start the whole process over again.

So today there I was with Lily and a crowd of fellow customers whom I struggled not to judge. (Obese people on drive around carts buying soda and doritos, a general lack of teeth, etc.) It was there that I found some really cute dresses. For $14.

I bought it in both of these colors. They had some plaid versions that were really cute too but Lily vetoed them. Why was I listening to the advice of someone who was wearing underpants with a grinning frog on the butt? I thought that she was probably right.

There were some other dresses that I like too and if they had been $8 I would have bought them.

Like these.

Nice huh? Walmart. It's the new Target.,

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Oh. My. God.

Today a miracle occurred and it is called "I fit into size 6 and 8 skirts."

Please allow this to sink in.

I definitely don't fit into size 6 or 8 jeans, but skirts, bless their sweet hearts, are more forgiving. They don't mind butts and thighs.

They were junk store skirts and I bought them because just having those sweet single digit numbers in my closet pleases me.

In related news, my scale is trying to make me go completely insane.

Every morning I weigh myself.

Today when I weighed myself the number was Particularly Awesome. I stepped off and weighed myself again. Still Particularly Awesome.

Not content to just enjoy Particularly Awesome, I shifted the scale by two inches on the floor and stepped back on. The number changed- about a pound and a half more than Particularly Awesome. I stepped off. I got back on. Still a pound and a half above awesome. I tried putting the scale back into the original spot- still a pound and a half above awesome.

What the hell?

Why must the scale taunt me like this? Is it in league with Toblerone? What have I done to deserve these horrible mind games????

I suppose I could just weigh myself once a week, but that goes against everything I am! I am obsessed. I am inpatient. I like goals.  I like to monitor my progress daily. I am also convinced that if I don't weigh myself everyday I'll forget that I'm a healthy girl and will dive head first into a plate of hot cheesy nachos with sour cream and guacamole.

Cheese. Sour Cream. Guacamole.

What was I talking about?

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Diet update...

About four months ago I started to exercise and eat less.

At first it was exceedingly unpleasant. Running for five minutes made me want to die.

Not eating a Toblerone bar (thank you Michael) every night before bed made me want to cry.

For some reason I stuck with it and can now report that I have lost about thirty pounds.

Weird, huh?

I still have about fifteen to go before I'll reach my goal weight, though at this point I've lost enough to be down four pants sizes.

People have been asking me what diet I have been using. It's really simple.

For breakfast I eat Frosted Mini Wheats. At 10 am I have a cup of decaf coffee and a 100 calorie chocolate treat. For lunch I eat salad or left overs. Then I eat a Skinny Cow chocolate ice cream cone. At 3pm I eat a bowl of popcorn. Then I eat a healthy dinner. I can eat fruit and veggies all the time. On Saturdays I eat whatever I want. The end.

I run for about 20 minutes five times a week.

That's it.

Nothing crazy. Nothing unmanageable.

Getting started was hard, but creating an eating plan that never leaves me feeling deprived makes it feel like I can eat this way forever. My body feels stronger and healthier and I really like that.

So there's my story. If you're thinking about getting healthier I bet you can do it too.

Friday, April 16, 2010

What happens when I get bored and am left alone with the children for too long.

David has been away all week.

Usually I handle this beautifully. The children and I have a nice rhythm. We learn, we play, we tidy.

La, la, la.

Sometimes however all that time alone with the children makes me restless and when I feel restless I can get a bit impulsive.

The last time this happened I cut Rebecca's hair and gave her bangs.

We all know how that turned out.

You can understand why I was concerned when I started to feel a bit restless today. Out of the blue, out of the very mysterious ether of the vast cosmos, it occurred to me that I should dye my hair red.

Now, I have many things, cellulite, phobias and too many pets. One thing I do not have is gray hair. Which is weird but awesome. My mother, who is 65, is just starting to get some little gray hairs. My point, is that I do not have experience with hair dying, particularly with attempting to dye my hair red.

It must not be Lucy red. 

It must be a more subtle red. I conferred with my friend Amy who said to go for it.

"Millions of women dye their hair every day." she said. "Piece of cake!"

I was still worried.

I did a little research which was not all that helpful. The L'Oreal website? Useless.

The Clairol site was better and so when I was at CVS an hour later wandering the aisles with Lily I looked through all the Clairol products.

Permanent was way too scary. I skipped those.

Demi-permanent which washes away in 28 shampoos was better, but still a bit nerve wracking.

Then I found it, an after thought of hair dye, the semi-permanent hair dye that washes out in 8-10 shampoos.

I bought it.

It was 6.99.

Then Lily and I picked up Rebecca from dance and once we were home I got to work.

I read the instructions. I even followed some of them.

I did not do a strand test. Who has time for that when you are being impulsive?

I did not change out of my sweater, nor did I drape a towel around my shoulders.

I did use gloves, but only because they came with the kit.

Clairol understands where I am likely to cut corners.

The whole process took about 20 minutes.

It came out just as I had hoped. Subtle, but fun. There was no crying. I forgot to eat dinner though. Maybe red heads eat ice cream for dinner...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

In which the imagination of a housewife gets away with her...

Today was one of those days when I should have been taking care of financial paperwork but decided that I really needed to dust and rearrange furniture first.

Rearranging furniture always puts me in a good mood. Always. I dusted all of the surfaces in my room, caught up on the laundry and moved some things around. It felt great.

Then I went to the playground with the kids after school and had lots of lovely chit chat with my mom friends.

"My life, " I thought contentedly, "is so delightfully full."

When we got home I grabbed the mail from the mailbox and noticed a letter addressed to me.

A hand-written letter with no return address. The handwriting seemed vaguely familiar. As I considered the handwriting I began to imagine who might be writing me a letter.

Clearly it had to be from an old boyfriend. Maybe one of them read my blog and was so taken by my stories of dog poop and pus that he realized that I am thing which has been missing from his life. I went into the house with the letter in hand, trying to decide which old boyfriend it might be. The poet? The scholar? The doctor?

Then it occurred to me as I fetched the children their snack, it might be from someone I know now! The man who pumps my gas? The checker at Trader Joes? Someone who has loved me from afar and is making his intentions known???

As I made a cup of coffee I began to plan what I would say to this mystery man. I need to be gentle of course, but he needs to know that I only have room in my heart for one man. Though this new man may have many wonderful qualities, he cannot replace my Moo. He will just have to accept a life, empty though it will be, without me.

I sat down with my coffee and opened the letter, prepared to cope with the drama as it unfolded.

I tore open the envelope and began to read...

The letter was from my friend Carlene.

She was thanking me for a baby gift I got her.

Which was nice. Very nice.

It's possible that I need to get out more.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Nothing that some duct tape couldn't fix...

Oh the fun of yesterday! There was cake! There were presents! There was joy!

And for about ten minutes my house was clean.

And then it wasn't.

I know. This is truly the hallmark of being a completely boring middle-aged woman. I obsess over the state of my kitchen floor. I wash it and for a few brief moments I am happy.

And then the people and animals who live here track the planet in with them and I am back in squalor.

I'm also a bit cranky because sleeping with my husband has become like sharing a bed with a restless toddler. The past week he's been coming into bed late. First he stomps up the stairs. He swears he's trying to be quiet, but really, it's like a heard of pugs who just heard a dog treat hit the floor.

Then he comes over to my side of the bed while using his iphone as a flashlight. Sometimes he rummages around my nightstand drawer for motrin. Other times it's some mystery item that only he knows about.

After he has flung his clothes on the floor and gotten into bed he begins to adjust his CPAP mask. He puts it on. He takes it off. He fiddles with the clasps. On. Off. On. Off.

Then he goes to sleep and for a little while all is quiet. I drift back to sleep.

Then it begins. A sound that can be best described as Darth Vader in a wind tunnel. In his sleep he has unclasped one side of his mask. This creates a sound which I am incapable of sleeping through.

By now Lily has made her way into bed between us. I do not mind this. Truth be told I like it. She's small. She's snuggly. She usually smells good. The only problem is that I can't just reach over and nudge David without waking Lily up. It's a king size bed and he is far away on the other side. My legs don't reach him, otherwise I'd kick him.

First, I try to reinsert my ear plugs. Then I turn my white noise machine up louder. This never works.

Finally, I get out of bed and walk around to his side.

"Fix your mask!" I whisper furiously.

"Wha?" he says.

"Fix. Your. Mask!" I repeat.

"Huh?' he asks.

"Your mask!!!" I seethe.

"Why are you yelling at me?" he asks pitifully.

Sometimes he is awake enough to fix the mask. Sometimes he is not. I have suggested that he use duct tape to keep it to his face.

This does not seem unreasonable to me.

He is away for the next few days and reader, I am so happy to know I will not be woken up by that man's breathing.

There is a time for romance and there is a time for sleep, and truly, there is a time for duct tape.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Post Auction Round-up...

Yesterday was the La Leche League Silent Auction, an event that I have run for the last four years and from which I have just stepped down.

The Silent Auction is always a blast. My co-leader and I wear evening gowns and tiaras to promote the auction which takes place during our Area Conference. There are so many, many babies to coo over and more than a few little girls stop to stare at our fancy dresses. The camaraderie that I share with my fellow Conference Volunteers is also amazing- it feels wonderful to be working hard for a cause which means so much to me.

However, spring is becoming an increasingly busy time for us. We have birthdays and dance shows, recitals and gymnastics performances. I am looking forward to not having the auction on my plate next year.

Tomorrow, as Lily has reminded me every single day for the last two weeks, is Lily's birthday and it is really the craziest thing because that child is turning eight.

I told her that I have had quite enough of her growing already and that I'd appreciate if she would just stop.

She refuses. She is so difficult.

Tomorrow there will be a special outing, cheeseburgers and cake.

Here are some things I feel you should know.

I killed three hornets in my attic today by spraying liquid poison on them. I really didn't want to use poison in a poorly ventilated room where my children play, but dude, HORNETS! One year I found a hornet in the attic and went downstairs to get the hornet poison. By the time I got back my cats had killed it and were eating it. It turns out that occasionally the cats aren't completely useless.

My house is properly cleaned because I did a big blitz on it when I came home today, but also because my husband had the kitchen nice and tidy when I returned. Know what else he did? He changed the sheets on the bed this morning. They were starting to feel like a sandbox from the sand which the dogs track into the house. It was so nice to get into bed tonight and find clean sheets that smell like a dryer sheet commercial. Thank you David for being a man of great competence and heart.

Eight years ago, right around this time I went into labor and showed David my mucus plug. He was grossed out. I was excited because it meant that this baby was going to be getting off my bladder and out of my body. You can only appreciate the joy of the mucus plug if you have carried seven pounds of human being inside your body.

Sophie pooped on the porch and ate half of it.

After Lily was born we found the cats playing with her shriveled umbilical stump on the floor.

Rebecca bought all of her gifts for Lily with her own money. She even bought Lily's teddy bear a present. I love that kid.

I miss mixed tapes. When I was a teenager and in my twenties a mixed tape was a declaration of love.

Dixie Carter died. Most celebrity deaths do not affect me at all. People die and I do not miss a step. But Dixie Carter, especially as Julia Sugarbaker, is a loss I keenly feel. Julia Sugarbaker was a wonderful character, smart and classy and strong. My mother and I still refer to using our best "Julia Sugarbaker" when we have been especially angry and outspoken. May you rest in peace.

That's about all I have today. I'm sure I'll have a weepy maudlin post about Lily tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

In the glow of the unexpected...

When I was pregnant with Rebecca, David and I lived in a two family house.

It was a sweet little apartment on a street with mostly big fancy grown up type houses. Our apartment was small and not really going to work for us once Rebecca was born. We began to search for a condo in our very modest price range. We were sorry to say good bye to that street and to our next door neighbors who were very nice.

We found a great place and in December of 1998 we moved. Once Rebecca was born in May we walked back to our old apartment to see our old neighbors and introduce them to Rebecca. When we arrived they had some news of their own. They were moving!

"We just sold our house," they began, "to the nicest young couple. They have a baby the same age as yours. They are famous musicians- she was on the cover of Rolling Stone. You should come introduce yourself once they move in. Her name is Tanya."

I never stopped by and introduced myself. I was tired. I was covered in baby barf and also, I was shy.

I sort of forgot about it and got on with the business of trying to figure out what the heck I was doing as a mother.

One thing that I did do was attend the weekly sing-alongs at the town library. It was there that I found myself sitting next to a pretty woman who had a cute baby the same age as mine. We got to chatting and she told me her name.

Yes, you guessed it. Tanya. We became friends quickly. Our babies were the same age, our parenting philosophies were very similar and it was just so nice to have a new friend to complain with about being tired.

This is a long story, huh? You still with me? Hang in there, we are getting to the good part.

So this new friend is Tanya Donelly of Throwing Muses, Breeders and Belly fame. But to me she was just another mom who needed to complain about teething.

Our families became very close, so close that a few years ago David emailed Tanya a poem that I had written and asked her if she would be interested in using it in a song. He really wanted it to be a surprise, but Tanya told him that since she would need to change some of the words she wanted to be sure that I would not mind having it massaged a bit for the song.

I did not mind one tiny bit. She went on to write and record an amazing song which has finally been released.

You can listen to a preview here:

Jars of Fireflies featuring Tanya Donelly

It's also available on Itunes. You could even buy it! Which would be crazy!

So mostly my life is about junking, dog hair, homeschooling and laundry, but sometimes little gems of unexpectedly delight fall into my lap and for a few moments I feel like a princess in a story with a glistening tiara and the favor of the gods.

Monday, April 5, 2010


This morning I woke up from a version of the same dream I've been having for about three weeks. It is possibly the most pathetic dream I have ever had, except maybe for the dream where I am doing laundry.

In the dream I am junking. Sigh.

If you have a more pathetic dream than that, then by all means share it, because folks, that is a lame, lame dream.

I have not been junking for a few weeks, not since the big attic/basement clean out. I resolved to only buy consumables. No junk. Just food and toilet paper. The end.

And yet, the dream. I am wandering the aisles of the junk store. In one dream I find the very things which I have given away to Goodwill for sale. I'm not sure what to do. They were mine, but now they are not. Should I buy them back? Pathetic.

Anyway, I woke up from this dream at 6am feeling grouchy. Then I exercised which people who lie say makes you feel happy and perky. I was still grumpy.

The grumpy continued through the dog walk and seemed to be contagious since by the time we began doing schoolwork this morning everyone was grouchy.

Usually schoolwork is pretty uneventful for us. We do our work, we learn; no big deal.

Today we were a cliche of what people imagine when I talk about homeschooling. Rebecca had a full blown tantrum over the stupidity of fractions and of math in general. There was stomping and crying and sassing. Meanwhile, Lily whined about how hard, how terribly awfully hard it is to practice lowercase cursive c's.

Pathetic. We were a tired threesome of misery.

Going to the junk store seemed like the most logical solution. It felt good to be back and I was extremely selective about my choices. I bought a dress for 5.99 and Lily a sweatshirt for 2.99. We found a game about animals for homeschooling for .99. That's it.

Then we spent a few hours at the playground when school let out and that was nice because I spent some time talking to grown-ups who are not completely deranged.

I came home, cleaned my house and had some dinner.

Tomorrow will be a new day and tonight there had better be a new dream. Just not the one about laundry please.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

We're not in Oz anymore but dreams really do come true...

Hi there, I'm Cheryl from Deckside Thoughts. I'm visiting Shiny Red Houses to tell you about something exciting I have planned for Sara. Shhhh! It's super duper secret.

Sara is my cousin. It would take 1 hour and at least 16 minutes traveling the 59.07 miles to reach each other. I've never been to her home; she's never been to mine. Why? Well, there's that state line that stands between us. While Sara is not a native New Englander, I am. State lines matter here in the northeast. It's journeying into unknown territory regardless of whether I can spit to the line or have to drive an unholy 12 miles to get there. So it's just natural that I would be guest blogging from my comfortable home rather than risk life and limb by crossing over that line to visit Shiny Red Houses in Bad-assachusetts. (Don't blame her for any of this content. I bullied her into letting me post this.)

Sara fancies herself something of an amateur sleuth. Whether an FBI agent, PI, or simply a local dick, she'd like to get involved with her sleuthing on a more serious basis. I can hear the longing in the some of the posts she's written over the past year. My favorite is when she met a private detective working on a case and she tried to take over the case had delusions of grandeur of solving it herself offered her assistance.

I believe people with dreams need to follow them, no matter where they may lead. Thanks to the miracle of Facebook and making friends with invisible people I've never met, I think I may have found a way to help her dream come true.

"At Stiletto Spy School, it isn't just the experience you’ll remember. Achieving goals at Spy School is similar to achieving goals in business and life. You will take away skills you likely would never have learned that will translate to your everyday life:
  • The confidence from commanding a weapon and the empowerment you feel after disabling an attacker changes how you perceive life challenges. You will feel more confident in everyday situations.
  • You will learn to look for opportunities in unusual places and be prepared for the unexpected.
  • And while you may not need stunt driving tips to park your car in the garage, they might just come in handy the next time you drive on an icy road or have to avoid an accident with quick thinking and maneuvers."
Last night I spent some time wandering around on their website. Gliklech Pesach! I learned I could design a very special Stiletto Mission just for Sara. Here's what I believe will be most useful for her as she begins her training to become a dick and live a richer, less homebodied life.

Mission: Get Her Out of the House

Seduction and Flirtation
Seductive dance, the dance of power, teaches how one can use seduction and flirtation with both friends and enemies—essential spy girl knowledge! The advanced moves in this class will leave you breathless. Fun and sexy, but completely non-intimidating, seductive dance is one not to miss.
  • Let's face it. She's been married for a gazillion years, homeschools two children, and seldom leaves home. She needs this, even if it's only to renew her belief in her inner ho sex kitten.
McGuyver Survival Skills
If you had to survive on the contents of your purse, how would you fare? Could you fashion a weapon out of everyday objects? You’ll soon know how! This class is full of surprises as you learn uncommon uses for common objects, and the 10 things you should always carry with you that can save your life.
  • Okay, we know she carries an abundance of things in her purse. She's constantly cleaning it out and posting the results on Facebook. She'll benefit by learning which of those ordinary items she usually weeds out should stay right where they are and which items need to be added to her arsenal.
Fabulous Lunch Courtesy of Stiletto Spy School

Extreme Stunt Driving
Skids, box turns, and 180s? Emergency lane changes, obstacles, and enemy agents in hot pursuit? Not a problem. We’ll teach you to handle it all and to maneuver your way out of any situation at high speed with skill and aplomb.
  • These are more than just lessons for dicks in training, these are meant for the woman who's only lived in states where the people drive as though they have a license to kill. The skills she'll take home with her will help her survive on the mean streets of Bad-assachusetts. When her children are ready to drive, they'll be learning from a pro.
Orienteering and Navigating
Taught by a Reconnaissance Marine, in our Orienteering and Navigating session you'll learn how to read your environment and never lose your way—or your target—again.
  • Remember her trip with the children to Harvard this winter? Sure you do. It's the only time she left the house that month. Need I say more? I thought not.
Champagne/Sparkling Cider with Strawberries and Chocolates

Salon Time
Glam-o-rama! After a long day in the field, every spy girl needs a little pampering. We have stylists on hand to bring out your inner glamour queen. Services vary depending on location and may include glam make up, hair styling, mini massages, gorgeous manicures and luxurious pedicures. You’ll feel rejuvenated and ready for more action!

Dinner and Breakfast
Must Eat Foods for "Mission: Get Her Out of the House."

Of course, she can't go alone. What fun would that be? She'll be taking 5 of her closest women friends with her! Round trip airfare to NYC for all is included in the cost of this two-day mission. Full limousine service and transfers will be provided to and from SSS. They'll all be staying in spacious suites in the newly refurbished Avalon Hotel.

Total cost? 602 bazillion George Washingtons!.

The look on her face when she hears about this? Priceless!