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Saturday, February 27, 2010

Second City!

Whipped my house back into shape today. The trip to WI threw off my groove, but I'm getting it back. I'm really looking forward to the Second City show tonight!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Can't Fight This Feeling Anymore

Yesterday afternoon I was talked into going to the REO/Styx/38 Special concert at the Prairie Capital Convention Center. (She had me at "can't fight this feeling.") Although I've been extraordinarily tired lately, I figured I could muster the energy for an old persons' concert. I met a coworker friend (who was very excited about the REO...probably because of the tight trousers). We doubled up on beers right from the start so we wouldn't be left thirsty at any given musical moment. I enjoyed every other 38 Special song (the ones I knew). I actually was surprised I knew that many. For Styx I only connected with a few songs and was more enthralled with the digital dancing ladies in the background. I wondered... if you are going to digitally create ladies to dance erotically on the big screen, why do they all have boyish figures? Seemed strange. But I digress. The big bang was the REO Speedwagon. Of course my concert companion was overjoyed and sang many of the songs at the top of her lungs (we were about $24 into our beers by that point). I enjoyed all the tight trousers and eighties hair styles. It is nice that is all back in style again for them. Concert Companion thought that the lead singer (possibly the only one left from the original REO) had dyed his hair blond, but then we realized it was just gray. Good times. Apart from the lines for the bathroom, lines for beer, gridlock in the parking ramp, and that jiggly, jiggly tummy gyrating next to us, it was a pretty fun night out for my inaugural visit to the Prairie Capital Convention Center.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Love And Affection

Well, it is 7 o'clock. I officially made it through another day of cold calling without getting fired. Yeah, the last time I made calling people my career choice, it did not go over so well in the long run. I'm hopeful that I made some good progress today and that everyone I left messages for yesterday and today will call me back and sign on the dotted line (of course!). I'm happy to call it quits for the day and head home to my little Peanut. You know, I was thinking today that I couldn't live without his love and affection. I hope he won't be mad at me for staying at work late.

Monday, February 22, 2010

For Crazies Sake!

After getting out of work late last Thursday, I threw my bottle of water in the freezer to chill before hitting the road. As I did it, I knew it was a bad idea. You guessed it. I forgot the bottle in the freezer. What's that you say? Was it glass? Sure was. I am looking forward to going home to clean the exploded broken glass out of my freezer.

Last night on my drive home I was getting close to home on I-55 (I had already passed exit 109 at Williamsville) when the left half of the car slammed through what I assumed was a pot hole. It was jarring to say the least. I thought maybe the wheels had fallen off. I was shaking and listened and didn't feel the familiar thwump, thwump of a flat tire. I proceeded with caution repeating to myself over and over again "It's going to be okay. It's going to be okay."

This morning in the haze of my foggy morning brain, I went out to inspect the car in daylight. The wheel was visibly bent and the tire pressure was at about half what it should be. On my father's recommendation, I proceeded to the gas station to fill the tire before heading to the tire place to get it inspected. When I went to fill the tire, you could hear the air escaping and I put my hand by the bent wheel to feel the breeze of the air coming out faster than it was going in. I called a tow (who by the way told me "I've never seen a pot hole do that.")

So I sat there in my parents' brand new car. Oh... did I not mention my parents' lent me their brand new car they got last week so my dad could take mine in to have the windshield washer fluid fixed? Yeah. Talk about guilt. Sorry Mom and Dad. I hope your other children make you proud. So here I sit at work again. Looking forward to those shards of glass, driving home on my baby spare tire, and doing more cold calling at work tomorrow. Didn't I mention the cold calling? Good. I'd like to pretend it doesn't exist. Or that more doesn't exist tomorrow and I don't have to stay late for it. I may need a beer.

Blown It

I'm starting Monday sitting at a gas station waiting for a tow to the tire place. I tried to fill up the damaged tire and can hear the air escaping. No good.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

One Piece?

Well I made it back to Springfield in one piece. My parents' car...not so lucky. A pot hole caused some undetermined-at-this-time damage. Fun for Monday!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Starry, Starry Night

Although I had a tremendous work load this past week and didn't complete all my work before the five o'clock bell on Friday, I still managed to hit the road north by 6:30pm. I had beautifully clear skies (and roads) and a Cheshire cat moon smiling down on me all night. Due to a late night packing and FINALLY bathing Peanut on Wednesday, I was under-sleeped Thursday and awfully tired on the road. I took some caffeine poppers at about 9 thinking it would carry me through to Tremp City, but alas it did not. I needed to refuel with some coffee in Mauston. In the twilight of the witching hour, I arrived at my parents' home safe and sound. The multitude of stars twinkled a welcome greeting to me as I unpacked the car. Peanut woke Grandma and Grandpa up to let them know we made it home safely and then hopped up on his bed for the night. I'm ready for a fantastic WI weekend extravaganza!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Got Milk?

My Netflix movie last night was Milk. I first heard about this movie while doing The Laramie Project last fall. There was a reference in the play to the Twinkie Defense and every time I heard the line I thought, I need to look that up. Although I'm usually such a good little researcher when I'm in a show, I'm sad to say that I never did look it up. (Sorry Phil) Luckily eventually my director just told us what it meant. So all I knew going into this movie was that when Harvey Milk and Mayor Mascone were assassinated, the defense was that the shooter was all hopped up on junk food and therefore somehow incapable of determining right from wrong (hence the Twinkie Defense). This was a fabulous movie, I think everyone should see it. But first of all, I can't believe I hadn't even heard of the movie. Granted I don't watch television and see previews, but it is one of those things that is kind of up my alley. I hadn't heard of Harvey Milk before either. Where was this revolution in our history books? The assassination took place the year I was born. I'm really old now. How many more years have to pass before an event becomes worthy of history status. It seems like a pivotal time in history to me. The movie also brought about a deep sadness for me. Like I said, this took place a lifetime ago and I wonder how much has really changed since then. After all, only a few years ago cops were entrapping gay men in bathroom stalls in Minneapolis, MN. How long will it take before everyone in this country is actually allowed life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness? On a brighter note, James Franco is just the cutest little Mrs. Milk I could have asked for.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

IL Adventure

I officially had my first experience with the big, fancy mall here. I've lived here since last May and hadn't yet set foot in it. Don't get me wrong, I have driven by it in pursuit of other pleasures several times, but haven't perused the wares. But last night I did. I was out on the prowl for some pretty things to wear for Blondy's birthday. I realized I haven't purchased anything new since last May when I was living in the hotel. And that stuff was for summer. It just seemed unfair not to be able to pick out something new, so I did. I just traipsed through the tip of the ice berg as far as the potential mall experience goes, but I did see a gigantic carousel....in the mall. A whole one. Serious. I guess if the kids ever come to visit, we'll have to check it out. If I had been on my proper IL Adventure A-game, I would have had my camera with to take a pic. Maybe in another 9 months.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Love Is In The Air

And admiration, respect, and gratitude. It's that time of year that I like to reflect on all the people I care about, all the people around me who make a difference in my life every day. It has been a long crazy road since this time last year. When I think times are hard, all I have to do is reflect on last year at this time when times were definitely a little harder.

Thanks to everyone who helped me get by last year. Obviously there is no way for me to express how much it means when your sister makes you dinner because she knows you don't have any food at home. Or all those surprising windfalls that always came just in time to pay another bill. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Luckily I was eventually blessed with a job and although it was a very hard decision to move half way around the world, I have to appreciate all the people who made it possible. Thanks to everyone who supported my decision even if it sucked for you. I really needed it because it was pretty hard on me too.

And thanks to all those people who helped me move...over and over again. That brings me to my new supporters. Even as a newbie here, there were plenty of people willing to lend me a hand to get unpacked and settled in. I have the best net of supporters from within my new work community. These people haven't even known me a year and still have meant a lot to me already.

I was thrilled to embark on a new theatre career in Springfield and even more thrilled to meet a few people outside the circle of work. Even though I only spent a few months with these people, they are theatre family for life.

The biggest thanks goes out to my parents and close friends. I have this bad habit of thinking nobody cares about me, but it is this close group of people who are more than willing to knock the sense back into me. Thank you for everything you do and everything you are. You mean the world to me.

And thanks to everyone who made me laugh and made me smile. I am grateful for every moment of joy. 

Happy Valentine's Day. I wish you all a year filled with love.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Sickies

I'm recovering from the sickies. I haven't worked since last Wednesday and honestly am looking forward to a short week. It's another WI getaway! Can't wait!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Nobody Told Me

Okay, the tornadoes I kind of understand. In WI I grew up with the threat of tornadoes, although along the Mississippi valley, we were fairly protected from them. The increased threat here has worried me since moving to central Illinois, but I've come to terms with that. Mostly because it is winter. But nobody told me about earthquakes before I moved here! A friend emailed me this morning to ask if I had felt the quake that took place in northern Illinois this morning. Luckily that was the first I had heard of it. I've done a little more reading since then and someone mentioned this New Madrid Fault line. I feel duped. Just sayin'.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Crazy Explosion

This morning crazy exploded all over my desk and I experienced the fall out for the rest of the day. I did a crazy amount of work today and yet I breezed through it. I must have been "on" today. I whipped out detailed orders, fancy proposals, creative designs, and managed to keep everything in order. Some days just click, I guess. In the wake of the blast, I'm trying to decide if I want to make something delicious for dinner tonight or rush off to the theatre for a cultural experience. I have a ticket to the Shen Yun show tonight and according to the pamphlet, it is "leaving millions in awe." It isn't everyday I get this kind of culture delivered to my doorstep and I'm feeling guilty that I don't really want to head out into the blizzard conditions tonight. Forget the fact that I haven't been very good at attending community events lately. I've been blaming that on winter. It is dark and cold and windy and it makes me tired and anti-social. Okay, the anti-social attitude probably doesn't come from the winter but I'm going to blame it on that for now. Maybe it's untrue. You might think I'm crazy. Okay, I just got lost in The Cars, but the song just told me "when you're curious, I'll be back around." I think it is trying to tell me that cultural events come and go. And when I'm ready it will be back around. Well, that's my story anyhow. And I'm sticking to it.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Good Times With The Folks

I had a great time with my parents this last weekend. They coasted into town Friday night on a snow drift. Mom and I mixed up cinnamon rolls and while they were raising, we watched a movie and had some popcorn. I was amused when I checked Facebook to see that both my siblings were also enjoying popcorn Friday night. It was almost as if we were all together in spirit.

Saturday morning we were able to enjoy those rolls, which tided us over on our shopping expedition to Menards and the grocery store. After dropping off our goodies at home, we headed out on what I like to call an "Illinois Adventure" to find a restaurant I haven't been to yet. We found Krekel's easily. From the outside it appeared to be a root beer stand. The building and interior were stark white. I wouldn't say the retro pictures on the walls justified the the IL Times Best Of article that the interior was retro. The brick floor was definitely retro, but not quite what I pictured either.

The food took a surprisingly long time to make considering the light crowd, but was really worth it. I think I'll save this restaurant as a summer destination when you're really longing to hang out outside and don't mind that you're waiting for food while doing it. The rest of Saturday was filled with projects like insulating my attic door, replacing faucets, picking up my new Xmas tree, and cookie making.

Mom and I managed to get some good card playing in while Dad worked away. Mom also made an awesome meatball supper and then the two of us rolled out cookies and then held frosting fest before resuming card playing. Sunday we revisited Charlie Parker's, and even though the waitress took my fork to replace it and never brought one back, I can't feel too bent out of shape about it. Every time I've been there, the waitresses don't come back once the food is served and sometimes before that. But I kind of understand the dilemma when the place is packed and the second round of customers are hovering over staring at your chair the entire time. It just doesn't disappoint.

Mom and Dad hit the road in the early afternoon and Peanut and I snuggled down for a whole afternoon and evening of movie time. Just about the time we'd had enough resting, Mom and Dad were rolling into Tremp City safe and sound. They probably need another weekend to recover even more than I do!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Jiggity Jig

Well, the parents made it home safely and Peanut and I are resting up. I'm happy to have working faucets, a closed damper, and some new weatherization. Thanks!

Mmmm... Krekels

Between Dad's projects and Mom's baking, we sampled the best burgers in Springfield at Krekel's. Makes me wish it was summer and we could eat outside! Mmm good.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Celebration of Snow?

I think I celebrated Thursday just a little too much. My Boss Man offered to buy me a drink at the Dockers Bar after work. A few other ladies also wanted to have a few cocktails and they ended up buying me several drinks. It was a crazy night at the bar. I got home late and nothing on the to-do list got to-doed. Now tonight while I really just want to eat a gigantic burger with bacon and cheese and go to bed, I will have to force myself to be productive. The parents are en route to Central Illinois this very as-we-speak-end and I should probably clean up the house, not to mention Peanut. Lucky for me it was raining and slushy and it is currently snowing. This is going to buy me some time while the parents take it easy on the roads. Good for me, not so much for them. I'm thinking about mixing up Mom's famous cinnamon rolls, watching Peanut play with Dad, and then tucking them into the guest bed safe and sound tonight.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Power of Thought

Today I decided to attend the Facebook event To Write Love on Her Arms Day February 12th through the 13th. To Write Love on Her Arms is a non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury, and suicide. What a good cause. After watching What The Bleep Do We Know? last night, I was reminded of the incredible power thought has on our bodies. It boils down to being as simple as "What you think about, you bring about." Our thoughts need to be positive and we need to reinforce them at every waking moment until they are permanent. The one discussion from the movie that really stuck with me last night was that most people know you should have positive thinking, but that most people have a smear of positive thinking over this mass of negative thinking. I am guilty. I told a friend recently that I gave up self-deprecating talk a long time ago. Which is true; I did. And it made a WORLD of difference on my outlook about absolutely everything. However, I never banished the thoughts. I just didn't say them out loud anymore. I need to dig deeper and get rid of that negative mass of thought that still lingers within. I have no use for it. I'm so excited, I decided to write love on my arm today. And I might everyday until my body and mind get the hint.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Secret Society of Lost Things

Where the heck do they go? You know... those things that you know exactly where they are and don't give any thought to until you want to get them out and realize they are not exactly where you thought they were. Where have they gone? Case in point. I have a pair of earrings that I rarely wear. Each earring lives in a little plastic bag, in a little box, in my grandmother's jewelery box, on my dresser. When I went to fetch them the other morning, there was only one little bag with only one little earring in it. Like I said, I rarely wear them, so it isn't like I have a clear mental image of the last time I used them or putting them safely away where they belong. But seriously? Where did it go? Why would I not have put BOTH of the earrings back in their bag, in the box, in the box, on my dresser? This is one of those mysteries that probably will never be solved based on the fact that the earring has in fact deported itself from my country and joined the Secret Society of Lost Things. I will mourn the loss of it, until the day I feel ready to throw the lone, abandoned earring away. At that point, the Secret Society earring will come back begging for forgiveness. And what kind of reception can it expect? The garbage can!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Birthday Week!

No not mine. Peanut's! He is really looking forward to the birthday party on Saturday, which his grandparents will be attending. So far, I know we're going to make cookies because Peanut loves the cookie crumbs on the floor.
I had a setback this weekend and didn't get him in the tub like I thought I was going to. I realized last night that he was still a stinky boy and I had done nothing about it all weekend. Hopefully I can squeeze an evening bath in this week and maybe take him out to get his nails trimmed. What an exciting week for him!
I've been contemplating a gift. I used to buy him a new leash for his birthday every year just to make sure he didn't break it (he used to be quite the sled dog in his youth). With the realization that the leashes cost $40, that might not be in the cards for Nut this year. I've been thinking about a pet bed for quite some time. Maybe his eleventh birthday is the finally the time to get him something to cushion his old bones when he lays on the floor.

Peanut bathed in sunshine, snoozing on the couch this weekend.

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