Friday, April 16, 2010

Mystery Solved: Why Robins Want in House

Since a particular robin is still trying to smash his way into our house through a window (see blog below), I decided to do a ltitle research. It turns out that robins (and cardinals) are very territorial and when they see their reflection in a window, they try to engage with the "other" bird to get him out of the way.

Since the window pecking began a couple of weeks ago, we had been trying to stop the bird from crashing at the window by placing stuffed cats in his line of sight, placing some garden statuary in his path (a bunny and St. Francis) and propping a folded up lawn chair in his way.

No luck. Yesterday he started pecking at a different window in the dining room. He would perch on the rhodedendron outside the window and then make a kamikaze move directly into the glass. I shook the blinds at him a couple of times but to no avail.

I'm not sure how long this will go on. You would think the bird would have figured out his task is useless by this point, but I am not sure that is going to happen. Being a bit on the stubborn side myself, I realize this could go on till the birds fly south in the fall. Hoping the windows hold up!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Thinking about Downsizing?

In a program last evening, my friend Vickie Dellaquilla of Organization Rules, Inc., offered some great tips for people who are thinking about downsizing their homes, whether they are Baby Boomers or seniors.

Here are some of her great ideas:

Get someone to help right at the beginning. You will need it.

Give yourself the luxury of time. Don't try to do everything in a week!

Set aside time on your calendar for downshizing and keep those appointments with yourself. They are as important as anything else you are doing.

If moving, get a floor plan for your new place with measurements marked off so you will know ahead of time what kind of space you will have and what you can bring with you.

Start de-cluttering in rooms or spaces you don't use every day, like the basement, garage, attic or a spare bedroom. Having some positive reinforcement after making headway in these rooms will keep you motivated.

And lastly, there's no other way to do this then to go through everything you own. It may seem daunting but if you limit yourself at first to small areas (a dresser, a closet) and stay focused, you will get it all done.

Stop back for more tips and visit Vickie's website at

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

And now Twitter too. . .

Well, I took another plunge today and signed up for Twitter. I'm sure that most of you have been on there so long you are true veterans -- it is THE place to be on the web at this particular point in time, but I was a little leary of joining. But once I launched the blog, it seemed like a logical next step -- if there is actually anything logical about the web.

My Twitter address is Someone had already chosen the Twitter acoount using "boomthis" sans underscore, which bummed me out, but such is life for the not-so-early bird.

I hope you will join me here often and will "follow" my tweets if you are so inclined. I may not be Ashton Kutcher, but hey, I promise we will still have a good time!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Can you ever have too much chocolate?

Guest Blogger Kathleen Ganster:

“Is this edible?” I asked the helpful sales woman at the spa shop at The Hotel Hershey after I had slathered chocolate scented hand cream on my arm. “That is our most frequently asked question,” she replied.

I was in Hershey, PA -- “The Sweetest Place on Earth” -- with my daughter, Eliza, for a girl getaway and we were making the most of our time together. I love Hershey – I mean, who wouldn’t love a town built around chocolate?

I took it as a sign from God when I opened the morning paper the day of our trip and read that a daily dose of chocolate may actually help us live longer. Yippee, a license to eat chocolate! Not that I needed any encouragement.

Hershey has an amazing amount of fun things to do including the thing that Eliza and I loved best – a visit to The Spa at The Hotel Hershey. First, the Hotel was beautiful and had a very European feel to it (the intention of Hershey founder and hotel builder, Milton Hershey). We were delighted just driving up to the place! But then the spa...there is a variety of services offered many to do with chocolate. Eliza chose the chocolate fondue wrap and I had the cocoa massage. Although they weren’t edible, they were delicious!

Another fun task was the Countries of Origin chocolate tasting -- six shots of hot cocoa at the Cafe Zooka in the Hershey Museum. We couldn’t have been happier, drinking our chocolate and comparing notes. We also had the opportunity to visit Chocolate World, the gardens, the museum, and take a class at the Chocolate Lab at the museum. By the end of the two-day trip, we had to pass on a second chocolate tasting -- we did reach our limit. But we stocked up at the chocolate store at Chocolate World for the ride back home, just in case.

For more information about Hershey, visit