About a month ago, my brother-in-law Kenny started the Herman family tree. Now 30 days later there are close to 100 family members and growing by the day. Inviting us all to put our roots online was a genious idea and Geni is the provider allowing us to do so. Darren and I have long been wanting to add our family tree to Hermanweb but have been uncertain about what application to use or whether to build our own. Now that we have been introduced to Geni, we are definitely going to consider if there is a way to incorporate this application into our site. Either way, having our family tree online and seeing people add to it has been fantastic. Not only does Geni allow you to post your relatives and see how you are related to each one but you can store a lot of information about each person including where they were born, where they live, maiden name, etc…. You can also add your photo and profile details to provide more information on yourself. There is also a weekly newsletter that Geni sends out to the members of your tree alerting them to the activity for the week. You can even send messages to each other through Geni keeping correspondences all in one place. I think this is fantastic and I’m really excited to start building out my side of the family too. We have long been capturing our roots on paper, but now is the time to step into the digital age and have our family tree go digital too. If you don’t have a family tree, now is the time to start one and Geni makes it so easy. Have fun….we are!
We want to wish all our friends and readers that celebrate Easter a very happy holiday and enjoy the day with your family. For the past few days, Darren has been in Myrtle Beach golfing with my dad and brother, living the high-life from one golf course to another and lots of great dinners. Since he’s been out of town, Mom and I decided to take advantage of the weekend and did some of our own bonding. We spent most of it shopping and seeing all the new spring fashions in the stores. Lots of bright colors and colorful dresses. Shoes are also very bright but extremely high. I feel the need for band-aids already! We had some success but not quite as much as I was hoping for. We also spent some time pampering ourselves with a green tea pedicure that made our feet feel like we were walking on air afterwards. An hour of pure heaven on our feet – especially the massage. One evening we watched our wedding video again and no matter how many times we see it – we just love it. Everyone looked fabulous and appeared to be having the time of their lives which was wonderful. I don’t think I will ever get tired of watching it. We were reliving every magical moment. JoVon photography really did an amazing job. The men return this afternoon from their golf getaway so life will return to normal but we both enjoyed the last few days and the quality time we each got to spend with family. Hope everyone is enjoying time with their family today. Happy Easter to all!
On any given day, history is made. History is defined as a look back in time to see the events of the past. Some say looking at past events will allow you to predict future events. Hence, the idea that history can and often does repeat itself. Back on this day in 1982, I was probably at school, playing with my friends, hardly thinking about boys. Little did I know that at a hospital in New York City, Darren was being born and many years later we would meet and change each other’s lives forever. Therefore, today, March 4th is a very special day because with Darren’s birth came the birth of an entrepreneur and brilliant young mind.
I always find it interesting to see what other events happened on the day special people in my life were born so this morning I looked up March 4th and this is what I found:
1681: England’s King Charles II granted a chatter to William Penn for an area of land that later ecame Pennsylvania
1789: The Constitution went into effect as the first Congress met in New York City
1791: Vermont became the 14th state
1837: The Illinois state legislature granted a city charter to Chicago
1861: Abrahan Lincoln took the oath of office as the 16th president
1902: The American Automobilie Association was founded in Chicago
1913: Woodrow Wilson was sworn as the 28th president
1917: Republican Jeanette Rankin of Montana took her seat as the first woman elected to the US House of Representatives
1933: Frances Perkins became the first woman to serve in the Cabinet when she took over as secretary of labor.
1952: Actors Ronald Reagan & Nancy Davis were married
1987: President Reagan addressed the nation on the Iran-Contra affair, acknowledging his overtures to Iran had ‘deteriorated’ into an arms-for-hostage deal
1989: Time Inc. and Warner Communications Inc. announced plans to merge into the world’s largest media and entertainment conglomerate
1993: Authorities arrested key players in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center
1997: President Bill Clinton barred spending federal money on human cloning
1999: Retired Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun died at age 90
2005: Martha Stewart, imprisoned for five months for a stock scandal, was released from federal prison
I think it is pretty ironic that Vermont became a state on this day because Darren has such a fond appreciation for the “green” state. And the fact that the American Automobile Association was founded might explain Darren’s fondess for high-end cars (although I’d like to think that really stems from Kenny!)
Happy Birthday Darren!!!!!
The snow has been falling for a few hours now and as I gaze out the window I am captivated by it. Watching snow fall is one of my favorite things. I could stare out the window all day as it blankets the roads and the trees. When we lived in the city I would love to stroll through Central Park and gaze at the snow and ice covered trees. What a beautiful sight. That will always be a great memory of mine. Today however, I am home in Westchester admiring the scenery from our bedroom window. I planned to work from home today before I even knew about the pending snowstorm as we need to have a cable repair made so I’m hopeful they actually show up.
Today is the kind of day that growing up my brother and I would be hoping for a snow day. Snow days that fell on a Friday or Monday were the best – instant three day weekend! We loved waking up, hearing the schools were closed and crawling back into bed. We would watch television and hang out and then inevitably we all got dressed and headed out to shovel the driveway. I always hated that – my hands and feet were freezing cold in minutes no matter how much I bundled up. I would be miserable. Mark however, would rescue me from my misery by sending me back inside to bake. As we got older, I never even managed to go outside. Right from the time the first flakes fell, Mark would ask….so what are you going to bake today? I loved it. I would be in the kitchen baking a cake or brownies while Mark and Mom tackled the driveway. Dad always managed to make it to the office even if it took him five hours! When the driveway was finished we’d gather at the kitchen table and indulge in my warm and delicious creations. Then we’d breakout Trivial Pursuit and spend the afternoon playing board games. Those were great times!!!
Saturday, Darren and I spent the day in the city with my brother, sister-in-law and our nieces. My oldest niece is infatuated with New York City and recently discovered the American Museum of Natural History. After spending last Friday night at the museum with her girl scout troop, all she wanted to do was see what she missed first time around and to show everyone what she did and where she slept. She was unbelievably enthusiastic about her experience and couldn’t wait to return with us all in tow so she could show us around. Fortunate for all of us I was able to get our admission tickets comped through work so we didn’t have to wait on line. Within minutes of our arrival we were in the mammal exhibits. We started with the African mammals which were so life like. I’ve been talking about going on a safari for a while now and given that Darren is not very interestedl, he suggested I take it all in as that would be my safari…ha! ha! From the African Mammals, we headed to the Central American and North American Mammals, to the Whale Room, and eventually to the top floor where all the dinosaur bones are. The fossils were definitely my favorite but our nieces thought Easter Island Man from the movie Night at the Museum was the highlight of the visit. It was really cute to see the museum through their eyes. I hadn’t been there in years, nor had Darren, so it was really enjoyable to experience the exhibits as an adult and appreciate them on a different level than when we were there as kids.
The museum is open daily from 10am to 5:45pm and really worth a visit. It is conveniently located on the B,C subway lines at 81st and Central Park West. Depending on your love of natural history, you can certainly make a day of it there or you can spend a few hours seeing the highlights. The Planetarium and IMAX show are big draws as well. We didn’t make it to those as after 3 hours the little ‘troops’ were exhausted but they should be missed.
Hello everyone and happy holidays! Darren and I are sitting a table in Starbucks on Broadway in Saratoga watching the snow fall. The trees are covered in snow and ice and they look absolutely beautiful. The aroma of freshly brewed coffee and baked goods fill the store as we sit here admiring the winter wonderland unfolding outside. In typical Sherri & Darren fashion, we have our laptops with us and we are busy checking email.
We arrived in Saratoga this afternoon after an overnight stop at Mohegan Sun with the Hermans. Surprisingly, the casino was not nearly as busy was we expected but it certainly was smoky! Table limits during the day were a $15 minimum but changed over to $25 during the evening. Darren, Dad and I tried our luck at blackjack and Mom was hoping for a big cash payout on the slot machines. Our first attempt to ‘hit it big’ was in the Winter Casino but Darren and I were not fond of the dark atmosphere and smoke so we opted for a walk around the shops and made a stop at Starbucks for coffee. We wandered into the Sky Casino and liked it much better. The Sky Casino was brighter and more open allowing for better air circulation. We found two seats at a blackjack table and two hours later we were both pretty much even. Taking a break from the action we all met up at Big Bubba’s for some appetizers before heading to the Cabaret to see Aaron Lewis perform. For those of you who do not know who Aaron Lewis is, he is a singer-songwriter, with the band Staind and was nominated for 3 Grammy Awards. He is currently on tour playing acoustic solo performances. He played to a crowd of fans for nearly two hours. While I only knew a few songs, his show was great and the audience loved him. After the show, we stopped in at Johnny Rockets for burgers before heading back to the tables for one last try at winning a fortune. We didn’t quite end up with a major windfall but we managed to leave with a little more money than we came with so we were happy.
We got on the road fairly early today and were greeted with a mixed bag of precipitation for our drive. The Jeep performed amazingly well under these varying conditions and we were very happy how well it conquer the snow, ice and sleet that we encountered. Tonight we are off to meet Darren’s former Skidmore adviser and then tomorrow morning we are driving to Vermont for the rest of our winter getaway.
Hope everyone is enjoying the final days of 2007. We certainly are!
This afternoon, Darren and I loaded up our car with all the holiday gifts we bought for everyone. We headed over to the Herman’s to celebrate Hanukkah and have a great afternoon with friends and family. It’s been a long standing tradition in the Herman household to celebrate Hanukkah on Christmas Day, which I think is great because it gives us plenty of time to shop! The Kepner’s were also late in celebrating Hanukkah this year, as Darren and I joined the Kepner clan over the weekend for a gathering at my brother’s house in New Jersey. After two days of present exchanges, Darren and I ended up with some great clothing (some of which are perfect for our upcoming ski weekends in Vermont), a ticket to the Rangers/Devils game, a slingbox, some great kitchen gadgets and a gift card to Home Depot so we can finish our cedar closet this winter. My surprise gift came earlier this month – my new Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited. Darren’s surprise is his new Nikon D80 camera which he absolutely loves.
We had a great time celebrating the holidays with both our family’s and watching the look of excitement on everyone’s faces as we exchanged gifts. Its hard to believe that the holidays are now behind us but we still have New Year’s to look forward to before 2007 comes to a close.
For some great photos of the festivities click here.
The alarm went off this morning at 7:30am and quickly Darren and I got dressed and dashed out of the house. We thought we were getting a jump start on the holiday crowds gathering at Riviera Bakery in Ardsley, NY. Boy were we wrong! The store opened at 7am and will remain open til 4pm (or until everything is sold out). We arrived shortly after 8am and the parking lot was packed and the line inside wrapped around and around, almost out the door. It seems plenty of people had the same brilliant idea we had of being the first people to arrive.
Every holiday throughout the year, people from near and far in Westchester County descended on this bakery shop for their amazing desserts and baked goods. The shelves were filled with fresh breads (sourdough, 7 grain, rye, french bread, etc..), muffins (pumpkin, blueberry, cranberry), turnovers, holiday cookies and cupcakes, and fresh baked cakes and pies. The apple crumb pie, sour cream coffee cake, double chocolate cake, babka, banana cream pie, were all flying off the shelves faster than they were coming out of the oven. Holiday favorites baked in the shape of the Yule Log, Reindeer, and even a replica of the Empire State Building filled the counters. While Riviera is known for their baked goods, they also sell a variety of quiches, soup, even chicken pot pie. Their tarts were also popular and are not just the traditional fruit tart. They had root vegetable, potato leek, chili and zucchini/brie/mushroom. People were buying everything and anything in preparation for the Christmas holiday. After about 30 minutes, Darren and I walked out with a variety of cookies, cupcakes, and turnovers. We will be bringing our scrumptious treats with us tomorrow as we are headed to Darren’s folks for a holiday gathering. If you still need to pick up your baked goods, you should get up and get and out of the house fast before everything is gone.
This evening at sundown begins the first night of Hanukkah, “the Festival of Lights”. For the next eight nights we will be lighting one candle a night until all eight are fully lit on the menorah. Hanukkah marks the re-dedication of the Temple in Jerusalem after its desecration. According to the Talmud, at the re-dedication following the victory of the Maccabees there was only enough consecrated olive oil to fuel the eternal flame in the Temple for one day. Miraculously, the oil burned for eight days, which was the length of time it took to press, prepare and consecrate fresh olive oil. Hanukkah customs include eating potato latkes (potato pancakes) playing with the dreidel (a spinning top on which are inscribed the Hebrew letters) and the giving of Hanukkah gelt, gifts of money, to children.
Growing up, my brother and I looked forward to getting presents (we preferred opening them all the first night rather than spreading them out over the course of eight nights). We just couldn’t stand the suspense! The day Hanukkah arrived we would anxiously wait for our dad to come home from work so we could see what our parents bought for us that year. It was so much fun to unwrap toys, books, games, clothing, etc…. When I was younger I loved getting Barbie’s, doll houses, babies and carriages, kitchen sets – all the typical things little girls play with. I also loved getting board games: Chutes & Ladders, CandyLand then gradually growing into Monopoly, PayDay, Battleship, Go To The Head of The Class, Scrabble, Boggle, you name it. I loved games (and still do!) Today, as I watch my nieces unwrap their gifts with the same enthusiasm and excitement as we did, it brings back so many wonderful memories. Life was great being a kid….ah!
Hanukkah is such a joyous time of year and Darren and I are so excited to be celebrating our first Hanukkah as Mr. & Mrs. in our new home. Our menorah is out and ready to be lit. Let the traditions begin!
Happy Hanukkah everyone!
This evening Darren (and Mediaweek) officially announced his new position as group director of digital media at The Media Kitchen, a media planning and buying subsidiary of Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners here in New York City. Darren is leading the effort to build out the entire digital media division for The Media Kitchen and is really excited about taking his previous experiences and applying them to the agency world.
Join me in congratulating Darren and wishing him all the best in this incredible new endeavor of his. This is just the beginning of a lifetime of amazing achievements still to come and I couldn’t be more proud of him!
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