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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Ready Or Not

I wish I had been more motivated last night to pack and hadn't dragged it out so long. I'm so tired. Let's hope the early work release will get me to WI faster!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Wasted

So, I just wasted my lunch hour driving around the great city of Springfield. I intended to get my oil changed, but Midtown Tire turned me away telling me it would take longer than an hour. So, I hopped on the Blackberry looking for another lube location. I headed back out on the road and did a big old circle, finally finding the secondary service place only to decide that it was too late to get an oil change and make it back to work on time. So, the joy is that I get to do it all again tomorrow! However, I also had some errands to run like picking up some necessities as well as Christmas shopping. I suppose I can't really do my Christmas shopping over lunch anyhow since I only have a vague idea of what to buy the little munchkins. The main determining factor is that it has to be local. I'm afraid this is going to be a look and see expedition. I'm not a big fan of those. I like knowing what I want to buy, knowing which store carries it and where it is located, and then stopping in to pick it up. When will I have time for all these errands? If I buy presents I will also need to wrap them. I'm out of practice considering it has been a very long time since I've purchased gifts for others. Is this the stress that other people usually feel before the holidays?

Monday, December 28, 2009

Joy of Joys!

Last week as an early Christmas miracle, the La Crosse Community Theatre decided to take the first steps to make a bad situation better. I'm truly overjoyed! Community Theatre Reinstates Artistic Director Parmeter from WKBT. Parmeter rehired as artistic director of La Crosse Community Theatre from The La Crosse Tribune. If you'd like to write a letter of thanks to the board members who made this possible, you can contact them: Tom Brock: tbrock@altra.org Cary Heyer: crheyer@viterbo.edu Krin Krause: 2daboat@centurytel.net Vicky Kunz: vickylkunz@hotmail.com Chuck Roth: croth@wxow.com

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Looks A Lot Like Christmas

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! All those flurries finally covered the grass here. I actually had to shovel this morning and it's not over yet.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Mellow Xmas

Peanut and I had a pretty mellow xmas. We didn't have presents, but I got a fabulous dinner and saw a super-funny movie. And we finally got a little snow!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Pier 1 Disappointment

I can't believe I didn't find anything on my Xmas Eve trip to Pier 1. They weren't even playing Xmas music. Nothing like the LAX store. I'll have to go there.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

New LCCT Developments

A piece done by the local news team at WKBT. A new article in the La Crosse Tribune.

We are keeping our fingers crossed for a Christmas Miracle resolution to all of these shenanigans.

To contact the board, see email addresses posted below.

It's Raining Cats And Dogs

I don't think I've ever experienced such a torrential downpour two days before Christmas. I'm glad it isn't ice...yet. Like my mother told me, "You're in the ice belt now." It sounds like something that a She-Ra character would have. Her name would be Frosta! Wikipedia knows everything: "She was the Ice Empress of Etheria with the power to freeze anything she desires (probably with her super fancy, ice belt!). She has a huge crush on He-Man, often going to great lengths to impress him (she would)." I knew an ice queen once. Anyhow, point being that I'm looking forward to the hunkering down that usually comes with a big snow storm. I'm going to hunker down in my house with the shades drawn, Christmas lights twinkling, White Christmas playing on the DVD, with Peanut at my feet because I have a bowl of popcorn on my lap. Ah... sounds dreamy.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Who Said "Macbeth?"

I've been disappointed, to say the least, to hear about the scandal at my hometown theatre in WI. My friend was stage managing a show there and the whole second weekend was cancelled because of this scandal. I can't even imagine the disappointment after putting your heart and soul into a show only to have the rug pulled out from underneath you.

I can't imagine it, because in my 31 years I've never seen anybody do such a thing before. Any self-respecting theatre person knows the show must go on. It is time for the theatre to place people in charge that also believe this most important of the theatre laws.

If you have been involved with La Crosse Community Theatre, I urge you to become actively involved. Take a look at what is happening and speak your mind, whatever that may be. A community theatre is only as good as the group of people who breathe life into it.

 ‘Honk’-ed off: Artistic director’s firing leads to cancellation of LCCT production La Crosse Community Theater fires artistic director, cancels shows If you want your opinions heard, you can contact the LCCT board members: Tom Brock: tbrock@altra.org Cary Heyer: crheyer@viterbo.edu Krin Krause: 2daboat@centurytel.net Vicky Kunz: vickylkunz@hotmail.com Chuck Roth: croth@wxow.com

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Social Overload

I think I got social overload. I've been avoiding people since my party. I have to venture out to get Peanut food today and I'm dreading it! What I do for him.

Friday, December 18, 2009

I'm No Poet

Twas the night before the Xmas Party, alone in my house One creature was stirring, no sign of a spouse. The stockings were hung by the chimney with care, In hopes party guests would soon would be there. Peanut was nestled all snug in his bed, While visions of cracker crumbs danced in his head. And me in my apron, drinking water from the tap, Couldn’t settle my brain for a long winter’s nap. I had to wash the kitchen curtains to remove the splatter, from two days ago when I was mixing some batter. I pulled them from the windows in a flash, And once removed, noticed the dust on the sash. I decided to leave it, it’s decorative snow! And under the curtains, nobody would know. When, what to my wondering eyes should appear, But a miniature dust bunny, tumbling near. With a little old vacuum, so noisy, but quick, He and his friends disappeared; it was slick! More rapid than eagles the time seemed to fly, But I sang to Christmas songs as I cleaned up the sty! "Now Dusting! now, Vacuuming! now, Primping and Fixin’! On, Comet! On, Clorox! on Draino and Swifferin’! To the top of the porch! to the top of the walls! I’ve washed away! Washed away! Washed away all!" As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly, When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky. So up and down the steps the faster I flew, With arms full of dishes, and baskets too. And then, in a twinkling, I heard start to play Bon Jovi, who made me fall in love with him this day. "And if I could have one wish come true, I wish every day would be like Christmas, I do.”

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Grinchin'

I'm rolling out a batch of cheddar snacks and enjoying a beer (thanks dad). Can't wait to sample the snacks and watch The Grinch while catching up on filing.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Life Is A Journey Recap

I just read my favorite blog from 4/27/07 titled "Life is a journey, don't forget the lip gloss." It still makes me laugh. Check it out in my blog archives now.

Colored Glass Balls

I went out on a hunt for large ball ornaments last night. I stopped at the Wal-Mart thinking for sure if anybody had big balls, they would. No dice. Really the search might have ended there because I headed home with a heavy heart. However, a friend called to say he had seen big balls at the Kohl's store. After dinner for me and supper and a walk for Peanut, I headed back out into the cold December night. I went to the Kohl's only to discover my search would not be a short one. I headed on to the next store, and the next, and the next and came out empty handed. Finally at Target I found just what I was looking for... they had two left. Did I mention I need three? Elsewhere in the store I found another beautiful pair of big woodsy-looking balls. Again, where is the third? You'd think these things came in pairs. It was at this point when my enthusiasm for the hunt waned and I settled for something completely different. Well, not completely. I purchased several balls, but all much smaller than I had hoped for. Tonight I'll find out if I can string them together in some sort of great ball conglomerate. If not, I've still got big balls on the brain and could possible resume the search tomorrow.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Whole Lotta Funness

I've got a whole week's worth of projects, baking, cleaning, cooking, and more cleaning this week. Hopefully I have it all planned out so well it will be a breeze. All I have to do is focus on one task at a time. Over the weekend I was able to get 5 types of cookies in the oven for my holiday party this weekend. I did a quick clean up afterwards late on Sunday night. The kitchen rugs had to be thrown in the washer already because Peanut was licking them silly. And I will have to wash my kitchen curtains because once again they were splattered with some batter from my crappy stand mixer. Other than that, my house will be ready for the last minute cleaning before the big shebang on Friday. I did have to move three projects that were slotted for Sunday to later in the week. I guess even the best plans have to be flexible. I'm not too bent out of shape about it. It is the process that brings me so much joy; the party is just the icing on the holiday cookie.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Baker's Lung?

Is there any chance of developing baker's lung from inhaling too much flour? I hope not, because these chocolate chip cookie dough truffles are so worth it!

Planning Day

So I haven't seen any lights yet and no cookies have been baked (or eaten). I did do a whole lotta laundry and planning. I guess I have a lot to do tomorrow.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Light Tour

I think a light tour is in order for this weekend. The cold weather and snow (okay, flurries) are upon us. The decorating is done. I need to see some gaudy Christmas light displays. It is just time. I can hardly wait! It is also time to get into the kitchen and start cranking out those Christmas cookies. I was actually going to skip it this year. (I know, right? Me... not bake. Crazy talk) But with the decision to host a holiday party at my house next weekend, I decided I need cookies. You can't have a holiday party without holiday cookies. This weekend is going to be spent immersed in holiday. From the lights to the cookies, to planning the Xmas party. I was told to just throw some cups out there (yes, by someone who actually knows me), but I refuse. Shocking, right? I couldn't possibly throw a party that wasn't excessive. It is just my thing. Deal.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Christmas Cards From Garbage Collectors

So the only Christmas card I've received so far this year is from my garbage collectors. I feel like they deserve a 6-pack bonus with my trash next week.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Howling Winds & Crackling Fires

It appears that my backyard was spared from the blizzard that has been relentlessly dumping snow in Wisconsin. Last night it was rainy, but it seems we didn't get really icy either. This morning we were treated to flurries in the air and they have continued on and off throughout the day. I took this picture in my backyard when I went home for lunch. I don't think we'll get much more than this. That wind is vicious, though. It is making my car creek as I drive and it is howling through the chimney at home. I can't wait to curl up in the glow of my Christmas decorations tonight and watch a movie with Peanut. The weather makes me want to give that old fireplace a whirl too. Maybe I'll do that this weekend. If all goes well, I could have a crackling fire for my Xmas party next week!

No Snow

Today is almost over and there isn't any snow in sight. It is misting now and practically feels balmy. At least we've probably been spared from ice... for now!

Monday, December 7, 2009

All Christmased

Not wanting to add more holes in the plaster walls,
I decided to hang my berry wreath from red grosgrain ribbon from my curtain rod.
I love this old table cloth. I wouldn't dream of covering
this beautiful table with anything less spectacular. I saved room for pictures of my grandparents on the mantel, but cleared the rest of my family photos away to make room for Christmas!
Christmas looks so good in a house designed in mostly black and whites. :)
I can't wait to watch a movie in the Christmas glow.
Peanut knows it is only once a year while I'm decorating that
he has to wear the antler and he seems to have come to terms with it.

Arrested Development!

I see that Arrested Development: The Complete Series is available at Amazon.com for only $28.99. This is by far the funniest thing I've ever seen on television, although technically I watched it on DVD. With my no-spending policy, I wonder, can I buy it anyhow? It would be well worth the money spent on years of enjoyment. I could pretend I have television and pop in an episode each week at the same time. I'm also anxiously awaiting a rumored movie. Wouldn't that just be fabulous?

Sunday, December 6, 2009

A Quest

A quest that began a year ago has come to an end. I finally have my very own piece of Lenox ware from the year my parents were married! I couldn't be happier.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Redecorating

I love the holidays because I can move the furniture! And I also get all those dark corners clean before putting out the decorations. What? Am I the only one?

Friday, December 4, 2009

Puppy Compliments

What do you say when someone compliments your dog? "Thank you" feels like I'm taking credit. Today I went with "His name is Peanut." Feels awkward every time!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Wal-Mart Sucks

Over lunch I stopped by the Wal-Mart close to my workplace to pick up a few things. Peanut needed some treats and I've powered through my super-sized bag of Halls Defense Supplement Drops and decongestant and still feel the need for more. These few items were easy enough to find. I even made an unplanned purchase of a few bags of totally unnecessary chocolate candies to share at work. However, when I went looking for some organic green tea bags I came out empty-handed. Seriously? Do you know how many kinds of tea they had? I didn't count, but I could assume there were at least ten brands with at least 50 choices. Not one of them was organic. Not one. Point being, I was reminded why people shouldn't do grocery shopping at the Wal-Mart and I wanted to share that with you.

WI Thanksgiving

We visited my sister's family Thanksgiving morning before heading to Grandma and Grandpa's.
A quick pic with Great Grandma, Grandma, Mom, and Girls...four generations.
Magoo enjoyed the crackers! I met up with the Tremplo Gang at Vet's Bar in Tremp City. And then we hit up Rhinos, which is named something new again.
And a stop in the past at the Trempealeau Hotel.
And then the family Thanksgiving on Saturday. I think my brother got a hold of my camera.

A good time was had by all.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Out Of Sorts

I feel out of sorts since returning to Springfield. I hope it is just the effects of a head cold. I can't wait to feel better and tackle Xmas decorating!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving

My mom's thanksgiving was way less stressful than having my own. She has got a great kitchen for multiple cooks and lots of people to gather. Great day!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thankful

I'm thankful today for a belly full of mom's lasagna, my favorite--garlic toast, and red wine. Ahhhh... red wine. These are a few of my favorite things. I'm also thankful to have spent some time with some aunts and uncles, my grandparents, my parents, my sister's family, and three dogs. That is really what today is all about.

My grandma has been diligently working on a quilt for me and showed off her handiwork. Grandpa offered to take it off my hands if I didn't like it. Back off grandpa! You're not getting my quilt!

We spent the afternoon at my sister's eating and lounging around the living room. To the casual observer, one wouldn't even know we hadn't had any turkey today. I'm looking forward to Sherman's turkey leftovers tomorrow after a Tremplo Breakfast Club get together and our very own Turkey celebration on Saturday. 

So much to be thankful for.

Mr. Gobbles

I have arrived in WI despite the whirrly twirrly snow and red stop light runners. Bring on the turkey festivities! Where are you hiding Mr. Gobbles anyhow?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Blockus!

I'm all packed and ready for my WI turkey day getaway! Well the Blockus is packed anyhow. What else do I need? I'm very much looking forward to my time away.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Perfect Household?

My house is a disaster. Granted I've been told that my version of a disaster is quite different from other people. However, I do believe my house needs a thorough once over before I hit the road to Wisconsin. I really wanted to get everything cleaned and decorated for Christmas so I'm all festive right away when I return. Is that wrong?

I used to decorate for Christmas after returning home from a big Thanksgiving meal at my grandparents' house. Once I started hosting Thanksgiving myself I was far too tired to decorate that day, but usually got around to it the following weekend. Now that I will be travelling over the holiday, I feel it is only right to come back home to Christmas.

However, this week is already proving to be shorter on time than my list of projects will allow. And once I get my house all ready, I'll have to go prep for the big Thanksgiving feast at my parents' house. I'm getting tired just thinking about it. Peanut is too.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Festival of Trees

I attended the Festival of Trees this morning. This was being held in a building at the IL State Fair grounds, so I took advantage of the beautiful weather and walked. By the time I arrived at the Orr Building, I was definitely warm. I payed my $5 to gain admittance and they handed me a little program that looked like it mostly contained sponsorship information. The first thing to snag my attention was the gigantic tree in the middle of the room. Possibly 20 feet tall. It was being circled by the Candy Cane train, which honestly I figured would look a little bit more festive. However, judging by the line circling around the display area, the kids were pleased enough by it. There was some sort of live music going on. I didn't pay too much attention to it. I circled around the building looking at all the decorated trees and display rooms. Some that caught my attention were the Who Ville scene, a retro scene complete with a tree decorated with framed old-fashioned photos, and there was also a historic society tree decorated with old photos. The place smelled like popcorn, but I understand they had other food and gingerbread cookies there as well. I didn't sample any food and I didn't even see the gingerbread. However, I walked by a grouping of people that may have been crowding in for a taste of some gingerbread. The holiday market was really the reason I attended this event and it was disappointing. I was expecting holiday crafts more along the lines of things my aunts would have made. It turned out to be just a holiday store with ornaments, decorations, and some glassware. Nothing seemed special and once I was in there, I wasn't even sure if these gifts had been produced locally, which is what I was expecting. I left empty-handed after about 15 minutes at The Festival of Trees. I hope the admittance money goes towards something special, because it wasn't really worth $5. It was worth seeing once I guess, but this is not an event I would look forward to and return to each year.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Is That All I've Done?

I didn't have a very productive day. My big accomplishments were mowing my leaves and making chicken caesar lasagna for dinner. I probably should get motivated.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Pictoral Guide To Laramie

Some Laramie photos courtesy of Green Apple Photography...
"The play you are about to see..."
"Hi! My name is Debbie..."
"Thank you Reverend. I appreciate your speaking with me."
(aka..I believe you will burn in hell)
"Moises called saying he had an idea for his next theatre project.
But there was a somberness to his voice."
And a few courtesy of me....
Rehearsing.
My chair.
My assistant director & director. Father! The Laramie fam.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

God Hates Me

So I stopped for gas over lunch. I was pleased it was $2.68...1 cent cheaper than across town. On my way home it was $2.62. Am I wrong to think God hates me?

Fortune Cookie Wisdom

My Chinese fortune cookie says "The good life is a process, not a state of being. It is a direction not a destination." I needed that reminder today.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I've Fallen Behind!

I was attempting to blog every day during the month of November and somehow I fell behind. Last weekend was another busy weekend with three performances of "The Laramie Project," two cast parties, a strike party, and a couple of parents in town for the weekend.

We were also blessed to have about 300 supporters standing outside the Hoogland Center on Friday night just in case the hate mongers showed up (they did not). After walking through the crowd to get into the theatre, it was also exhilarating to perform to a SOLD OUT crowd. This whole experience is something I won't soon forget.

I've been laying low for the most part this week. I'll have to get back into my community events. I'm looking forward to the Festival of Trees this Saturday. While my parents were here, they accompanied me to the holiday fair at Lincoln Memorial Garden. I've been wanting to get out there anyhow, so I was thankful for the opportunity to check it out. I hope to return when the weather gets nicer again.

At some point this weekend I will have to start planning Thanksgiving. I can't believe it is next week. I also can't believe I can't host the party this year. I'll do my best to make it easy on my mom, though. I'm really looking forward to another WI getaway and some quality time with the Tremplo Gang. Once again, Jen Mac, you will be missed!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Holidays

We are another week closer to Thanksgiving. With the show behind me, I look forward to my trip to WI. I'll just get back into a routine before the holidays hit!

Mom & Dad

Had another good show tonight and I was glad Mom and Dad made it down. They also made it to the cast party for a few. Theatre people are theatre people wherever you go!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Standing On The Side Of LOVE

In response to the possible protest of tomorrow's production of "The Laramie Project," you can choose to stand on the side of love. Follow this link to find out how. You can also use this opportunity to donate to The Phoenix Center. The mission of The Phoenix Center is to provide quality HIV/AIDS care, prevention, and education to the community as well as support, counseling, and referrals for the GLBTQ community in an atmosphere free from judgment and discrimination of any kind.

And of course, you can also support us by buying a ticket to the show! Call 217-523-0878 or visit Springfield Theatre Centre's website. I hope to see you there!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Company

I'm enjoying an evening in with my laundry tonight. Ok, maybe not enjoying it, but Peanut is happy for company. We're both looking forward to a visit from M&D!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Food, Inc.

I just watched Food, Inc. I really had no business doing that. I've always been a picky eater especially when it came to meat. I have to admit that seeing people gnaw meat from bones makes me throw up in my mouth a little. This was 4,000 times worse than that. I've been attempting to eat whole foods lately, but still am inclined towards eating out more than I'd like. This movie may have broken me of wanting to eat foods when I don't know where they have come from. I have new found motivation to continue down the path towards local, whole foods. You know, over the weekend I was trying to explain to someone that fruit juice is bad because it has more chemicals than actual juice and he said to me "There are chemicals in all food." This, my friends, is why we have this problem in the first place. People in our country have just mindlessly accepted that it is the way it is and it's okay. If you are one of those people, wake up. It is not okay. And P.S. WalMart still sucks for whole foods and organic food selection.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Dockers Monday

After a weekend of performances for "The Laramie Project," I'm excited to have a few days off. I'm thinking I might need to explore the old hang out, Dockers, after work. It feels like it has been awhile. I also am pretty far behind on the grocery shopping and normal everyday things you are supposed to keep up on. Isn't that the way it goes?

I was excited to get a nice write up in the local paper before the opening of the show. You can read it here. But I realized I was in a town that actually supports the arts when the paper also reviewed the show a day later. And the review is actually positive! I love my new town.

The cast of "The Laramie Project" will be back to ripping peoples' hearts out and making them cry next Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at the Hoogland Center. I wouldn't miss it for the world. Get your tickets by calling 217-523-0878 or visit Springfield Theatre Centre's website for more information.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Behind The Scenes

Waiting behind the scenes for our first matinee performance of "The Laramie Project." Hoping for another outstanding show today. Then I'm bustin' outdoors!

Happy Birthday!

I had a good time celebrating Sherman's birthday in Springfield. Happy birthday old lady! Thanks for sharing your day with me. So sweet. I miss you already!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Good News

Life is full of positive things. I guess I just don't understand people that waste their time focusing on hate. I have been keeping up with my friend's health progress on his Get Well Facebook page and have heard great news. Apparently the brain swelling has gone down, his breathing tube came out, and he has been able to breath ...on his own! This is an awesome person and I'm glad to hear he still has his sense of humor. *whew* Keep on keepin' on, Wade. And for anybody else that would rather focus on good than evil, check out my Springfield Theatre Centre debut this weekend or next at The Hoogland Center in "The Laramie Project." Call 217-523-0878 for your tickets. They are a steal at $13 for adults or $12 for seniors.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Hate

Hate-group to picket The Laramie Project. "I guess I didn't understand the magnitude with which some people hate." "They are just missing the whole point."

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Cooking Up Something Special

I haven't been doing very much cooking lately. With rehearsals starting at 6:30pm almost every weeknight, the things I have been cooking for the last few weeks were in a crock pot while I was working. Although I've cooked up some delicious meals in the crock that I was very grateful to have ready when I got home, I wouldn't necessarily consider that cooking. With guests coming to town this weekend I feel as though I should cook up something special. I'm not entirely sure what or even if I will have time before the shows. I also want to share local restaurants with my out of town guests, so I'm torn. Maybe a special dessert treat is in order. We'll see if I even have time. I came home from rehearsal last night and after setting out a few things for tonight's rehearsal, got to bed pretty early. So at least I'm more rested today. I feel better and a little less crabbalicious.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Extraordinarily Tired

I'm extraordinarily tired today. I went out for a few drinks after rehearsal last night and think I was sprinkled on by some crazy full moon dust. Not tonight.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Sad News

I just found out last night that a good friend from high school had a stroke. I was thinking of him all weekend, so I must have knew. Somehow this feels like something that grown ups have to deal with. How is it that this happened to one of us kids? I guess it is part of that new phase in our lives called adulthood. Because I don't have a family with kids sometimes I forgot I'm a grown up. At times like this, I wish I wasn't. I'm still thinking of you Wade, and hoping for the best!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Turning Back The Hands of Time

The clock has been set back and I'm practically ready to get out of bed. I really caught up on my sleep this weekend. I can't believe tech week starts tonight!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Mmmmm...

While browsing the organic section at the grocery store across town, I came across Purely Decadent Turtle Trails non-dairy frozen dessert. I think I'm in love.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Weekend

I can't wait to go home and be alone all weekend. I think I'm sick of being around people. I just have to get through work today and our first rehearsal without being able to call "line." Do you think I can do it? I'm not so sure. I look forward to finding something to do in the community with my new Saturn. I also need to get my house spiffed up for a gaggle of company next weekend. I will have four (4!) house guests. I hope the basement doesn't flood before then. I will need all the sleeping room I have. Can't wait to see y'all!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

40 Days and 40 Nights

It has been raining here for like 40 days and 40 nights. Not only is my backyard flooded, so is my basement. Yay for mopping! Please make it stop.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

It's Mine!

Just barely into my 32nd year (for those of you confused, I just turned 31, so have begun my 32nd year), and I just bought my second vehicle! It is a brilliant blue 2004 Saturn Vue that I'm told my nephew will appreciate. My psychic told me I was going to get a not new, but nice red car. I guess she just knew how much I wanted a red car. Maybe next time. For the time being, I'm really happy to have a reliable vehicle with low miles and plenty of hauling space. All the papers were signed over my lunch hour and temporary plates put on. I'll get my official Illinois license plates at some time in the mail. For my birthday I renewed my drivers license in the Land of Lincoln and it is beginning to feel like I really live here! I got my vehicle insurance set up this morning and added on renter's insurance as well. I feel so safe. My only disappointment today was realizing that my new vehicle does not have keyless entry. I thought there was a remote I used the first time I drove it, but was mistaken. Luckily the folks at the dealership are awesome and are going to do some research to see if they can find one. I really hope that works out. Otherwise, mark down another stellar day in the Illinois Adventure that is my life.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Saturn Vue!

I've decided on the Saturn Vue. I'm signing papers tomorrow. My payments are lower, so I'm really pleased. Can't wait to celebrate!

Monday, October 26, 2009

The Great Debate

The 2004 Saturn Vue... 49,000 miles. $192/month. $85/month insurance. 18-25 mpg. vs the 2005 Mitsubishi Galant...
90,000 miles. $148/month. $93/month insurance. 17-20 mpg.
Vote now on the right-hand column!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Busy Weekend

Blondy is home safe and sound after a busy weekend of test driving. I have it narrowed down to a Saturn Vue or a Mitsubishi Galant. Monday I may have a new car.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Bella Milano

Blondy and I had a great dinner out at Bella Milano last night. We managed to hit a few bars and car lots and only set off my security alarm once! Yikes!

Friday, October 23, 2009

It's My Birthday

My Boss Lady made me chocolate buggy cupcakes. I'm wearing my glow in the dark bat ring now. Okay, it isn't glow in the dark, but it is still pretty cool. I'm loaded up on drink chips for the Docker's Bar and my friend, Blondy is driving down in the pouring rain right now. I'm sure we'll both be ready for cocktails by 5pm. I'm planning to dine at Bella Milano tonight (the closest to the Freighthouse quality I've tried in Springfield). I'm really looking forward to that. I'll be taking back the Chevy Equinox over lunch today. I'm thinking it is a big fat no. The thing I like the most about it is that it is red. I don't like the leather interior, moon roof, gigantor size, or the smoke covered with perfume smell that irritates my allergies. I also couldn't get the cruise control to work. I don't know why this Sales Man wants me in this vehicle so badly, but I'll have to break it to him that I'm just not interested. Blondy helped me find a place to live and tomorrow I hope she can help me find a new car. I could use that magic wishing dust now.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Test Driving Again

A Chevy Equinox this time. It is red (kind of), but I still think I hate it. It has some sort of slippery seat interior. Man I hate, hate, hate that. It also feels like I'm driving a 40 ton vehicle. And pay no attention to that parking job. I just think it is too big.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Birthday Week

This has got to be one of the tamest birthday weeks for me in a long while. Last year I had a trip, dinner outings, and a big karaoke birthday bash. I don't even have anything planned for Friday yet except a dinner night out. I should get on that. This year I'm busy working my tail off at work (no really....I'm on lunch now) and rehearsing for "The Laramie Project." I'm not sure I've ever done a show over my birthday and I feel like I should bake treats, but during what free time? I also don't have rehearsal on my birthday, so that means I'd have to make treats tonight after rehearsal to share tomorrow. We'll see how motivated I am by that time. I'm really looking forward to a visit from Blondy for my birthday. I realized that she hasn't been here since my first weekend in Springfield, the first weekend of May. At that time I was still living in the hotel. She went with me to look at my future home, so she saw it empty, but not since I moved in. I'm looking forward to putting her to work to find me a new car since she did so well helping me find a place to live. I was pretty apprehensive about that as well. My Boss Man actually had a remote broadcast at the car dealership today and inquired about a car for me. Soon after I had a Sales Man calling me to get a few more details and he is researching options this very as we speakday. I'm feeling a little bit more positively about this. I still ask that you keep your fingers crossed. I'm going to need some special birthday mojo, Blondy power, and maybe a dash of Halloween black magic to get me behind the wheel of my very own vehicle.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Get Your Tickets Now

The cast of "The Laramie Project" at The Springfield Theatre Center is amazing. They make me feel like I should work harder. Get your tickets by calling 217-523-2787. Performances at the Hoogland Center Theatre III are November 6-8 and 13-15. Friday and Saturday performances are at 8pm and Sundays at 2pm.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Testing

I took my very first test drive today. I took a 2008 Dodge Caliber out for a spin. It was the prettiest red you've ever seen. I can't afford to buy it yet.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Is It The Weather?

I feel sedated. No matter how much sleep I get I'm always still tired. I suppose it doesn't help that my head is swimming in a sea of allergens. I sneeze about every five minutes. I guess it is difficult to keep a clear head when I'm clouding up every five minutes. It may be cloudy and rainy and cold here, but at least it isn't snow yet. My friends and family in Wisconsin were treated to a whole day of snow last Monday. Suckers. Now that I'm this far south, I feel as though I should just keep going until I get to the promised land of no winter.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Full-Fledged Fall

I explored my community last weekend by heading to the Apple Barn in Chatham. Along the way I drove a little of the historic Route 66. However, I think that was only because I missed my turn.
Once finding my way to the barn, I was lucky to find a parking spot. The gravel lot was full and there were people and kids everywhere. Old crates overflowed with little pumpkins and gourds. As I made my way around the crowds and carts full of purchases, I had no idea what sight was waiting for me. As I stepped through the greenhouse I stumbled upon the biggest pumpkins I have ever seen. And there were rows and rows of them! The Apple Barn put last year's pumpkin patch field trip to shame. If only my niece could have seen it.
After perusing the goods, I settled on five little funky colored pumpkins, a bunch of Indian corn, and an apple pie bar for the way home. It was a pleasant fall outing.
I've been completely immersed in fall since then. I made pumpkin soup, stuffed acorn squash, spaghetti squash, and an apple cider brined pork chop...which reminds me it is almost time for the sauerkraut supper. I bet they don't have those here. I also found indoor homes for my tropical palms to winter.
I can't wait for the rest of what fall has in store for me in Springfield; I just hope it is not snow. H.O.P.E. Hope.

Friday, October 9, 2009

New Feature

I feel the need to share with my blogging friends what currently is my favorite song played on ALICE, so I've added a new feature on the right column called "New Favorite ALICE Song." I feel better now that it is out in the open. I'm still looking for a community event this week. If you have a great idea, let me know!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I've had a really rough year. With my birthday always comes great reflection. I hope I make it through stronger. Oh... and with a new car.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Hearty Chili Anyone?

Due to a lack of ground turkey in my freezer over the weekend, I've developed a new recipe. My steak chili is hearty and spicy without being too hot. Check out the recipe on the side bar. Enjoy.

Not So Much Nothing

I managed to get all my cleaning done for the week since this will be my first week spent at rehearsals every night. I feel as though I will not be spending very much time here, but I'm really excited to get this theatre ball rolling in Springfield.

I also managed to put away summer and drag out fall. I switched my clothes in the closet, swapped bedding and drapes, moved my porch plants indoors, decorated, and cleaned out my shed. I even turned the heat on finally.

Sunday saw me attempt to meet my goal by heading towards Spoon River for the drive. Think I misunderstood this thing. I thought there would be community events going on. All I saw were yard sales. And when I tried to find the "attractions" (I.e. Historic sites), I was unable to locate any. The map from their website was fairly useless in locating anything. I was also really hoping for some antiquing and was surprised when I couldn't find even one store. I was disappointed, but it was a nice day for a long drive in the country.

I'll have to get on the ball and figure out what to do next weekend!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

I enjoyed chili today made with peppers and tomatoes from my sister's garden. I wish she lived closer to share it with me! Sending warm chili thoughts your way.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Cold Weather Friends

My zinnias are thriving in the colder weather we've been experiencing lately. Peanut and I have also been good cold weather friends. Earlier this week Peanut hopped up on the couch out on the porch when I went out to water the plants, so I decided we would watch our movie out there. I haven't done that since before the robbery for sure and the temperatures were much warmer. But with the addition of a fuzzy blanket and a bowl full of warm popcorn, Peanut and I had a snuggly time. (Side note: if you haven't seen Hotel Rwanda, go out and get it tonight. Everybody should see it.) However, I think I'm going to need to find a warmer location for my palms to summer. I've secured floor space in the lobby at the radio station and even have approval, however I need to purchase some sort of drip trays before bringing them in and ruining the floors here. I can't wait to have some plants in here. It is the one thing missing in my work space. Maybe that is a task I will be able to accomplish this weekend. Other than that, I plan to do absolutely nothing. I can hardly wait!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Blink Blink

I'm on the bus home from the Blink 182 rock show. We are still rocking out to high intensity drumming. It feels fitting considering that the best part of the show was Travis Barker's amazing drumming. I woulda dove for one of those drum sticks he threw out if only I was close enough. The vocals from Tom DeLonge were more than disappointing. Considering I never saw this band live until now, I'm not really sure what to think. Was it just because he was wasted? He did sound a little like the town drunk at karaoke night. That unique sound was complimented by some well-placed belching. Sweet. Is it just that he is getting older? The teen angst music they are known for does seem strange coming from these aged fellas. Or is it that he never could sing but they have awesome producers? It is a hard call. I do know that the music still rocks. As a matter of fact I was amazed at how well Tom DeLonge played guitar considering he couldn't even keep his eyes open most of the time. If he hadn't sung at all, it would have been a kick-ass concert. Unfortunately that wasn't the case. I think in the future, I'll listen to their music from the CDs I know will be awesome every time.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Community In La Crosse

I counted Oktoberfest in La Crosse, Wisconsin as my community event last week and it really was. I spent time catching up with a lot of old friends. I enjoyed about an hour of the parade (just enough for me) from the radio station parking lot with a beer in hand and brats and pudding shots within reach. I made it to a few bars and then back to the fest grounds to fill up on fabulous fest food and catch the amazing Jim Busta Band. I am sad that I will miss Brat Pack Radio this year, but am grateful for the community time I had in La Crosse. Lucky for my Illinois co-workers, I was able to bring some of the Oktoberfest back with me. I smuggled some good old Wisconsin brats (and brat buns) back across the border. My boss man supplemented the lunch with hamburgers and hot dogs from our local hometown market and grilled them all up for us to enjoy over lunch today. As with any Oktoberfest, you never know what the weather will bring. My time in La Crosse last Saturday was absolutely beautiful. Today is shaping up to be pretty warm, but with nightfall, those clear blue skies are going to leave us a bit chilly. I'll be attending the Blink 182 concert at the OUTDOOR Verizon Wireless Amphitheater tonight and really experiencing that brisk fall weather. I think I'm going to have to dig out some sweaters and gloves. Happy Oktoberfest!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Magoo

I'm looking forward to visiting my niece this afternoon. I hope that she has some blocks for me to play with so she can knock them down. It is always a good time.

I predict my newer niece will be practically full-sized by now. After all she is almost a month old now! Maybe she'll even have her eyes open for awhile.

After sharing dinner with my sister's family, I may head to the big city of La Crosse to enjoy a few frosty beverages. I can only hope. So far I've had quite the relaxing time here in Wisconsin. However, maybe this is just the calm before the storm (I.e. Oktoberfest). Sent on the Sprint® Now Network from my BlackBerry®

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

After a drippy day in Wisconsin, I'm really looking forward to some beautiful fall weather along the Mississippi.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Working On It

My goal to attend one community event each week is going swimmingly so far. This last week I counted the chicken dinner fundraiser (known by my fellow Wisconsinites as a "Chicken Q") to raise money for the MS organization in Springfield. It was on Friday and actually pretty convenient for me as well. We closed the office at 4:30pm so I had plenty of time to swing by the Noonan's parking lot on my way home before the masses came through. It is about ten blocks from my house, so I headed home to enjoy my dinner and feed my doggy. Then we packed up the truck and hit the road for Wisconsin. After leaving the Dells I'll be heading back to the La Crosse area for the remainder of the week. I believe that Oktoberfest would qualify as a community event here to meet my goal for the week. I'm definitely planning on it! If something else interesting crops up I'll be sure to keep my follower (Hi Sara) informed.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Testing...

I have arrived in WI Dells for our Annual Sales Conference. I'm testing to see if my new mobile blogging is working.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Grey Gardens No More

I've been meaning to bring my camera along on a morning walk for weeks now. I wanted to capture a photograph of my very own neighborhood Grey Gardens. There were windows missing, broken, and boarded over. There was an abundant amount of garbage laying around the house. But, the best part was the overgrown back yard. The whole thing was weeds, but they stood taller than me. At one point in time there was a dog kennelled in the back yard, but by mid-summer you couldn't see him anymore through all the weeds. About a week ago I noticed that the empty (and never used) garbage cans had been removed from the alley way. The alley weeds had also been mowed down. Shocking! I've suspected that the house has been vacant mostly because the dog went away at some point. But this morning, there was a man and a truck! He was hauling out appliances. I can only imagine what the inside of this place looks like, but if you've seen Grey Gardens that is what I picture. As I rounded the block and walked through the alley this morning I got the biggest shock of all. Almost all of the weeds in the back yard have now been mowed down. You can actually see the back of the house. Crazy! It may be that a landlord has evicted the renters and is now trying to clean up the property. However, I have to be honest, I hope it gets torn down. That place is fucking creepy.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

This Just In

I will be playing Barbara Pitts, Reggie Fluty, Tiffany Edwards, and Newsperson #1 in the Springfield Theatre Center's production of "The Laramie Project" November 6, 7, 8, 13, 14, & 15. Mark your calendars!

Art & The Daily Happenings Of Life

I was able to attend the Art Spectacular at Washington Park over the weekend. It was a beautiful day for an art fair in the park!
I didn't find anything to bring home with me, but did see some great art out of my price range. In all fairness, I have one small section of wall in my bedroom that could use some wall art. Other than that, I'm all full up. I also have a rule that I don't buy anything unless I know where I'm going to put it. That rules out a lot of the pieces that arouse the response "Oh that is awesome!" when I realize "What am I going to do with a pottery pig?"

Last week I also auditioned for the Springfield Theatre Center's "The Laramie Project." I had a call back on Monday that went extremely well and I'm positive about the possibility for a part or two for me. The cast list has not been posted yet, but should be coming out soon. As always, I'll keep you posted, but I'm so excited already! Theatre in Springfield. Who could ask for anything more?

Friday, September 11, 2009

New Goals

I've taken up a new goal as of today. I recently started adding events to our stations' community event calendars. There is so much going on that seems interesting, I think I should try to attend one community event each week. First up: Art Spectacular at the Carillon. This is an art fair in Washington Park this weekend. I've actually been looking forward to it for about a month. Tune in for a follow up blog on the event!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

One Day Down

I packed my first vacation day in WI full of fun. I arrived Friday at 1:30am and was really ready for a little snooze. I woke up early to see my parents before they headed off to work, but then Peanut and I crawled back into bed for some more shut eye so I could feel like I slept in. I stopped by my sister's on the way to La Crosse to meet my new niece, Miss Julia. She is surprisingly light for being so gigantic. Of course she hasn't even been with us a whole week yet. I had a fabulous salon appointment and met Blondy for one of those famous Bodega sandwiches I've been thinking about for the last month. I also picked up cinnamon rolls and my free frosting from the U-Bake store and swung by the vet for some pet meds. After a light dinner at the Westview in West Salem, I headed to La Crosse again to meet up with some friends at the Bodega and bid one a fond farewell. It was everything I dreamed it would be. The beers were cold, the conversation good, the company better, and the Irish car bombs were the best. I also arranged for the purchase of a new blackberry. I couldn't have asked for more on my first day back in WI, but today is a whole new day!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Transition

The weather makes me want to go out and buy some pumpkins. I love fall. I just can't believe we're here already. I moved to Springfield at the end of April. Spring. Two seasons ago! The trees were full of pale green leaves and the flowering shrubs in front of the office still had empty branches. Somewhere over the last four months we also had summer, although I must have been too busy to notice. It probably didn't help that it was a mild summer here. On one of the hottest days of the year, the day of my housewarming party in early August, I sweated away trying to decorate my back yard at 10am. I had a conversation with my neighbors for the first time and they let me know that this was nothing when you're talking Springfield heat and humidity. So here we are with our toes in the chilly lake of fall. Not sure anymore if the water is warm enough to just dive in. Somehow it feels like my life is mimicking the seasons once again. What was the full passion for a canon ball just a few weeks ago has turned into the possibility for a boat ride. Maybe my desire for constant change is part of the reason I dig fall so much. There is nothing like transition. Everything else pales in comparison to the transitions that take place in the fall.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Welcome To The World

My new niece, Julia, was born this morning. I like her already. I'm really looking forward to meeting her in person this weekend even though babies are boring. Luckily the rest of the fam is coming home and I'll get to hang out with real people too. Maybe my nephew and I can get a few games of Blockus in. Wouldn't that be awesome? Julia is a wonderful reminder, at a time when I need it, what is really important.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Community

I've been added to Spfldbloggers.com! I must actually belong here.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Hibernating

I feel like hibernating this weekend. I've been locking myself away in my home snug as a bug in a rug. I do sleep with the lights left on outside and inside. I'm hoping that I can actually work out some safety features that will help me feel more secure in my home and over time this feeling will pass. Last night my friend received a text and he looked at me and said, "I just got a text from you." The person now in possession of my old phone apparently felt the need to respond to a text that my friend had sent me the other night. Although I have to admit it was one of the creepiest feelings I've ever had (apart from actually having someone walk into my house and steel my purse), I'm glad he texted. We discovered that Sprint had not disabled the texting feature on the phone when they supposedly disabled the phone, so there had been a ton of texting going on. My friend got a good text in about being a cop and that the phone had GPS so we'd see the guy soon. We didn't have any texts after that. I'm not sure if it is because the phone got disabled or if he ditched it. Either way, I'm guessing it probably freaked him out a little considering they probably disabled the texting about the same time. I hope so anyhow.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Peanut The Protector

When I went home for lunch today Peanut was too sleepy to get out of bed. I walked into the bedroom to snuggle him a little and then went into the kitchen to make lunch. I left the screen door unlatched (I usually latch it), my front door open (I usually at least close the screen door), and my purse on the desk right in front of the door (I usually hang it behind the door). I heard my screen door and thought maybe Peanut had pushed out. I saw him still laying in bed and went onto the porch in time to see the shady lawn mower guy hustling down the street (pushing his lawn mower). I didn't realize my purse was gone at first. I mean... the guy is shady. Who knows what his deal was. Well, it turns out his deal today was taking advantage of a silly WI girl who handed him her purse on a silver platter. (Did I mention how dumb I feel?) After calling 911 from my neighbor's house (so glad I introduced myself a few weeks ago), I packed up my sandwich and headed out to peruse the neighborhood for my purse. After all, I barely had any cash in it, no credit cards, an abundant supply of lip gloss... what could shady lawn mower man want with it? I did find it in the alley behind my house and saw a few cops patrolling the neighborhood. Let's just say if they don't find him, I may borrow the station vehicle (which apparently is hard to see out) and cruise my neighborhood looking for something to run over. After all, a guy pushing a lawn mower, probably doesn't live that far away. Fucker. I told Peanut if anybody ever entered our home unannounced again he had permission to bite him. I only wish one of us had heard the guy come in.

Monday, August 24, 2009

What About Love?

I was a lucky girl to get two free tickets to see Heart with the Bangles on Saturday night at the fair. My Heart buddy ended up not being able to go, so I headed to the Coors tent where our stations had a set up to see if anybody there wanted a ticket. No dice. I did run into two people who were going, so I tagged along with them. Standing on the track located a few blocks from my house, staring up at Heart rock out What About Love, I really felt alone. I continued my weekend of solitude on Sunday. I had agreed to count gate money at the fair. I walked over and found out the other counter from our station had gotten sick and wouldn’t be there, so I counted the money by myself. Then I tooled around the fair. I finally picked up a corn dog and sampled some sweet potato fries before heading back to my house for a rest. After the second round of counting, I explored more of the fair. I finally made it to the Hobby, Arts, and Crafts building only to find out it had just closed to the public. I tried to find something worthy of my nieces and nephews, but again had no luck. Over the course of the fair, on my way to and from concerts and the beer tent, I did inadvertently see sheep, calves, a bull, horses, miniature horses, a monkey, rabbits, goats, and a sign for llama (I think they had moved out already). But best of all were the cows that like to chase me. A fair buddy assured me that their handlers had them under control and I was never in any real danger, but you never know with cows. By late afternoon on Sunday, my poor choice of footwear had worn me down. Although it was a beautiful day, it was hot walking around in the sun. I was ready to bid the fair a fond farewell. I think it really finally sank in that I can do whatever I want to do whether I have a buddy or not. I’m not sure if that developed from moving to a new place where I have to be okay being by myself or I’d never do anything or if it was just about time. It is kinda funny to think that someone who has pretty much been single her whole life has issues with doing things alone. It’s about time I got over that, I guess. Love on the other hand…I might need it some day.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Holy Chocolate High Batman

My boss lady's birthday is tomorrow, so I volunteered to bake a cake. Given the direction that she enjoyed her chocolate, I picked out the most decadent cake recipe I've been meaning to try for forever. It called for creme fraiche, a french version of a sour cream. I don't know if you've been shopping for creme fraiche lately, but you can't just go to the store and pick it up. I checked out the grocery stores online yesterday and thought I had found a location where they would have the gourmet cream. It is on the far other corner of town, so I headed over there directly after work. I picked up my other necessities like the 5 1/2 sticks of butter and two pounds of bittersweet chocolate, but they did not have the creme fraiche. I stopped at another grocer on my way back home, but they didn't have it either. By this point I was tired, crabby, and way beyond hungry. I stopped for food on the way home and as my senses returned, I realized it would probably be okay to substitute sour cream for the more expensive french version. I was back on track. I mixed up the cake which all seemed to go well until the last stages when I realized I needed to transfer the gigantic recipe to a bigger bowl. The batter was thick. I scooped it into the three round pans which seemed too small because the batter came right up to the top of them. I put them on cookie trays in the oven for over flow and just went with it. However, I think because of the overflow, the cakes took about 20 minutes longer to cook than expected. By the time they were finally finished, it was about 10pm and I still had to head out to the grocery store (yes, again) for more sour cream for the frosting. In the process of flipping the cakes onto the wire cooling rack, I broke one. It was at that point that my 6-layer chocolate cake became a two layer cake. I ditched the broken cake and didn't want to chance ruining the second two by cutting them in half. I finally fell in bed for a nap around 12:30am. This morning the biggest challenge was cutting it. Those 2 pounds of chocolate, 5 1/2 sticks of butter, package and a half of cream cheese, and 9 eggs made for a super-dense cake. The coworkers seemed to enjoy it, but I'm not sure if the recipe will make it into my recipe box for further torture. I'll probably eat broken cake leftovers for the next week. I feel full just thinking about it.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

First Unfortunate Funnel Clouds

Yesterday marked my first tornado in Central Illinois. We escaped damage to the building at work, but I think all of our stations were off the air. My home on the north side of town also escaped damage, but there were several buildings demolished in nearby towns when tornadoes touched down there late in the afternoon. http://www.sj-r.com/homepage/x1373192379/Sangamon-under-tornado-warning I've been told that for Spring and Fall this is pretty much the norm around here. I am so glad to have a room set up in the basement now; however, I've decided I may need to practice getting Peanut down there before our lives depend on it. I also probably should stock the basement with some emergency supplies. I'm a little concerned that I won't know when to take shelter considering I don't have television. I get weather updates via text message, but think I might need to put a weather radio on my wish list. I should probably also put renter's insurance on my wish list, but I have to get rid of that house I'm paying home owner's insurance on first. Come on with the buyers already.

Monday, August 17, 2009

State Fair Fun

I did as much State Fairing as I could over the weekend. I enjoyed a gyro (seems they are always delicious) as well as a garlic chicken wrap, butterfly chips, and a gigantic iced tea from the French booth in the Ethnic Village. I also managed to find some batter fried mushrooms that were not so delicious. Honestly I still have my eye on a corn dog and the pizza on a stick has me intrigued. I'd like to squeeze that in as well. Friday I spent the evening in the Coors Tent enjoying ice-cold Coors Light and checking out Who's Bad - The Ultimate Michael Jackson tribute band. The background dancers were really my favorite part of that. Saturday I checked out the Artisan building and fought the crowds in the Dairy building to see the infamous butter cow. It was pretty gross. I saw people with ice cream, but I figured they didn't have any soy ice cream in the dairy building, so I departed as quickly as possible. I've never seen so much carnival in all of my life. I'm not a rides/carnival kinda gal, so mostly it is just intriguing. Unfortunately there are kids everywhere at a carnival. Every time I took a step I was running into one of them. I headed back to the Coors tent for a respite and some Corona Lights. The early evening band was entertaining, but since Who's Bad played again Saturday night. I took off early for the air conditioning of my favorite neighborhood bar, Franny's. Sunday I had planned to find the Hobby, Arts, & Crafts building and possibly a corn dog, but the rain kept me inside watching movies and snuggling with Peanut. All in all, it was a pretty good very first IL State Fair for me.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Eve Of Another New

This morning started one way traffic around the Illinois State Fair Grounds. This does not affect my travel to work, but on the way home, I have to go about 330 degrees around the fairground loop in order to get back to my street. They've posted no parking signs just about everywhere (where do the people park?) and put up those fancy stripey barrels and arrow signs directing people to fair ground gates. People have been driving comfortably in the left lane all day long. I feel that electricity like before a storm. I can feel it rolling in, but have yet to see any action. There is a parade tonight that I will not attend and then I think tomorrow everything gets rolling. The grounds are about a block and a half from my house, so I'm interested to see what kind of action I'll get. I know the school across the street sells parking spots in it's playground. Will I hear the music? I'll have to walk up and check out what all the fuss is about over the weekend. Our stations will be hangin' in the Coors tent, so it is a safe bet there will be cold beverages at least. And the newness just keeps on a comin'.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I'm Sad

The Girly Weekend in the Woods is falling apart. I'm longing for a vacation. Who will go on vacation with me? I wish I had a buddy.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Rest And Relaxation

The party is over. It was probably the worst-planned party of my career and yet with a huge final push from my parents and their friends, everything was finished and we were able to kick up our heels and enjoy some mai tais in the fading heat of the hot August evening. The turnout was fairly small, but we compensated by having more fun. A few of us hard-core partiers finished the night at Franny's neighborhood bar at 1am. I was definitely ready for beddy by then. Sunday, again with the help of my parents and their friends, I managed to get the backyard cleaned up and some remaining food stuffs put away. I packed up all the decorations and found new shelf space for them downstairs. As I lazed away the rest of the day, the only thing remaining was the mound of dirty dishes on my counter (and my breakfast bar, and my stove, and my floor!). Tonight I plan to tackle the mess and get the garbage out. When that is completed, I will settle down into the house that is completely put together and I'll have nothing to do! I'm looking forward to the rest and relaxation, but I wonder... what's next?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Short Week

Today is my last day at work for the week! I'm enjoying a soy coffee beverage from the Starbucks thanks to my Hawaiian-shirted co-worker buddy. Thanks buddy. I really needed it today. I've got an overloaded desk to clear before the end of the day. At some point I'll have to check and print my party plan so I'm all ready to face this weekend. Tomorrow I plan to FINALLY get my Illinois driver's license so I can really say I'm a resident here on Saturday while showing my house to friends and family. My parents will be arriving mid-day on Friday and I hope to have things under control so I can spend a little down time with them before the big day. I still have lots to do, but I've come a long way baby! Hopefully the folks will bring back their digital camera so I can get some "after" pics (as well as some choice party pics). Aloha.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Filing

A lot of the time when I have a big party coming up, my unfiled papers end up in a drawer or the closet. One time I remember throwing everything in a grocery bag (and then into the closet) because the tray I usually use as the "to-be-filed in box" is also the tray I use to set out party glasses! Due to the purchase of a new filing cabinet and the fact that my files were still residing in a big wicker basket from the move, I actually did filing last night. I bought hanging file folders and spent a good two hours organizing everything. I even ran out of the 50 folders I ran out to purchase at 9pm last night when I decided to begin this project. Around midnight I decided to call it a night. I found a new home for everything previously housed in the wicker basket. It made me feel like I might start getting organized around my house. However, that tray with my "to-be-filed" pile is still overflowing with the to-be-filed. I hope I have a big enough drawer to cram it in for the party.

Friday, July 31, 2009

This Is It!

This is my last weekend before the big party. I'm planning to work my little butt off tonight and tomorrow getting the rest of the stuff up on the walls and putting some semblance of organization to that crazy box-filled basement. Hopefully Sunday will be reserved for doing some "deep cleaning." That is the cleaning that most people only do once a year and if I was following my household tasks schedule I wouldn't have to do it now. Maybe next year I'll be on top of my game. For now I either have to find time for it or it will be a low-lit party so nobody can tell that I didn't wash the baseboards. I just sent a note to my landlord about replacing faucets before next weekend. Last minute right? I hope he comes through for me. I also had an unfortunate incident with the back door. It was hung up and then the screws in the bottom hinge ripped through the door frame. I'm sure it is because the frame was rotten. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that he'll just replace the whole frame and door and I would have a brand spankin' new door. Wouldn't that be dreamy?

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Follow The Yellow Brick Road

On Sunday I decided to move some potted plants to the patio and got distracted by these bricks peering out at me from under my shrubbery. They we fairly exposed under there and I began to wonder how many there were. I've been thinking a path from my back gate to the patio would be nice. I bent over and started pushing grass aside to locate the bricks. I stepped back a little... more bricks. Over to the right side.... more bricks. I got down on my hands and knees and started pulling grass out from between the bricks. Then I started pulling soil and grass chunks off that had grown over the bricks. I took a common sense break to eat something, change clothes, and put on sun screen. Then I got out my tools and began to seriously dig. I thought maybe it was an overgrown old patio, but think now it may be the original driveway. It is at a level right below where the concrete was poured as if they poured right over the old bricks. Anyhow, after a whole afternoon of digging in the back yard, I've uncovered a nice little patch of bricks. When I have more time (after the big party) I may try to actually dig them out and reposition. In the meantime, I'm getting more and more things up on the walls. Last night was my vanity mirror, shelves, and a curtain rod in the bedroom. Then I was able to unpack the two boxes of my vanity collection to put on the shelves. Almost all the boxes upstairs have been emptied. I'm finally getting close to being settled in. I was moving pretty slowly last night due to a skull-crushing headache which I am blessed to still have today. You know it is bad when you wake up and it hasn't gone away yet. Due to all the bug bites on my legs (probably from digging in the dirt of my backyard), I'm referring to this headache as the encephalitis headache. It has that brain swelling kinda feeling.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Sleepy Do

It has been a pretty uneventful Friday here in central Illinois. I'm pretty sleepy due to the super-late night last night. The show at the Muni got over at 11:35pm. Needless to say, it had some pacing issues. Luckily it was pretty well done other than that, so it made it tolerable. I did remember why I don't like the show, though. It's pretty religilous. Just a little too much for me, but an interesting experience over all. Today started late, so I didn't exercise to get myself going. I had two cups of green tea, but could have gone for a Double Venti Cafe Half Caf with a Twist of Cocaine. I'm really just lagging today. It has been a slow day at the office, except for the phones. (As the phone rings and I pause to answer it). I'm really ready for some home time. I spent my lunch on the porch with Peanut and it is just the most lazy dazy breezy day (pauses to answer the phone again...man I wish I liked Coldplay. I just had a winner dip out for the bus trip tonight... and the phone rings again).... where was I? Tonight I plan to test out a tilapia recipe (I've never tried tilapia before) and go for a long walk with the Peanut. After that it is a toss up between porch time and actually accomplishing something around the house. I'm looking forward to getting my house well on it's way to set up by the end of the weekend. My house warming party is now only 15 days away!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Testing Theatre Waters

Tonight I'm going to pay my first visit to the outdoor theatre here called "The Muni." I'm going to see Fiddler on the Roof. I'm hoping that my negative impression about the show itself will be turned on its head. What do I know about theatre anyhow? I am really looking forward to the outdoor theatre experience. I just need to dig out some bug spray to get me through. My legs are already covered with bug bites just from normal outdoor activity. I've been told this theatre is woodsy, so I'm sure they have bugs back there the size of my fist. I'm wishing I had time for a delish, fresh dinner tonight, but I fear I will not. I had the tastiest pasta dish last weekend which, without pasta, is fresh and healthy as well! Try it out and see what you think. I'm posting it in the Lonely Girl Recipe section.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Home

I did a lot of work on my home over the weekend. I cleared most of the boxes out of the upstairs and rearranged some furniture. I feel like I need to decide where the furniture goes before I hang things on the wall. However, I also feel like it will be when I hang things on the wall that the place will really feel lived in. I purchased a rug for my porch and am absolutely loving it. I don't think I'm ever moving. I just have to get used to that kitchen. While unpacking kitchen boxes, I pulled out things I thought I needed upstairs and then carried everything else downstairs. While at Lowe's, I picked up two storage shelves to expand my basement pantry to hold those extra pots and pans and small appliances. I think this is really going to work out. I also plunked down a fist of cash for some tropically plants for my back yard. It really just makes me want more, but even as is, I'm loving the little extra bit of color. They'll make great party decorations too! I still hope to do a little painting around the house. Hopefully by next weekend I'll feel like everything else is pretty well set up so I can spend a little time doing extra projects. I have 19 days until the big housewarming party. I forgot what it is like to plan a party and try to get your house finished too! I can guarantee I'll be relaxing on my porch for pretty much all of August.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Updated Lonely Girl Recipe

I removed my Black Bean Cakes with Salsa from the freezer and have been enjoying them all week. I thought I should share so everyone else can enjoy them as well. The recipe is posted in the side bar: Lonely Girl Recipes.

Lesbionic Weekend

The girls and I just booked a cabin for our annual fall "Girly Weekend" in Hayward! This year's cabin is bigger and better than ever. It has a deck, dock on the Chippewa Flowage, a fire pit, a pool table, a bar, and a gigantic walk-in shower. We are keeping our fingers crossed for a grill. We are planning on spending some good quality time there this year, but really it makes me want to stay a couple of weeks. Maybe someday I'll have someone to take long vacations with in the north woods. Until then, I'll take my Lesbionic Weekend. And I'm looking forward to it like nobody's business!

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