Saturday, October 31, 2009

Shadows of a thousand years rise again unseen,
voices whisper in the trees, "tonight is Halloween!"
Dexter Kozen

On Friday night Nick and I headed over to Angie's house for a fun Halloween party!
(Angie's camera takes much better photos than mine so these are all her cute shots.)

Cheery front steps

We were Swine Flu.

Darling cupcakes

Some blog friends: Alyssa as Ms. Frizzle, Heidi as a witch, Angie as
Beth from Dog the Bounty Hunter and me as the first half of H1N1.

We won "most original costume!"

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Random: lacking any definite plan or order or purpose
  • Junior League meeting tonight, hope my committee event announcement goes well!
  • We leave for California/Las Vegas a week from tomorrow. ACK! So excited but so much to do between now and then.
  • I dressed very nice today for a client meeting that was canceled. A waste of a good outfit day!
  • Nick and I finally figured out our costume for Angie's Halloween party on Friday. Actually, Nick thought it up, he's so funny. I love Halloween and he has never dressed up for it as an adult. Does he know what he was missing? Hope it turns out cute!
  • I have a leather portfolio with a large legal pad in it that I use for work. Just my big to do list and notes. I just used the last sheet of my old legal pad and slide in a new one. It's just like a new tube of toothpaste. Divine.
  • All of the beautiful fall leaves are blowing off of the trees. It makes me sad. It's like when all of the tulips lose their heads in the Spring.
  • Christmas is just 57 days away, which means my birthday is just 62 days. Only the best month of the year. Sorry mother, December beats October.
  • I bought a jug of delicious apple cider. Very yummy warmed in the microwave.
  • My car's engine temp light keeps clicking on at random times and beeping. I've had it checked and there is nothing wrong. Even the temperature gauge shows everything is cool and dandy. It is very annoying. Beeeep. Beeeep. Beeeep.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Chicago. Perhaps the most typically American place in America.
James Bryce

This past weekend I met my mom in Chicago for a weekend vacation to celebrate her 60th (wow!) birthday. We had a wonderful time traveling back in her life a bit with places from her childhood, seeing the sites, exploring, eating and laughing.

It was a wonderful trip to not only spend time with my mom on her birthday but also see such a fun city!

We stayed at the Ambassador East, in the Gold Coast area.

Outside of our hotel

Photos in the hotel's famous Pump Room of all the celebrities that have eaten there.

Beautiful neighborhood around the hotel.

We drove north to see where my mom grew up and joined her Aunt Rosie and husband for lunch.

My mom's childhood home in Glenview

Wrigley Field

Water Tower on Michigan Ave.

Stopped by the American Girl store to say hi to my Molly.

Victoria's Secret had angel wings to pose with up and down Michigan Ave.

At the Chicago River

On the architectural boat tour, cold and rainy but still fun.

Can't even see the top of the Sears/Willis Tower!

Beautiful trees along the river.

On State Street

My mom used to go to Marshall Field all of the time with her grandmother.

We had lunch in Marshall Field's famous Walnut Room.

At The Second City - hysterical!

Birthday dinner for mom at The Drake

The Drake ballroom where my grandparents had their wedding reception in 1939.

Birthday lady at dinner in the Cape Cod Room

State Street at the Chicago River

Episcopal Cathedral (See how the steeple is black? It is the only part of the original church that survived the Chicago fire)

In front of the Art Institute

Cloud Gate in Millennium Park

Ferris Wheel on Navy Pier

Heading up on the Ferris Wheel

Beautiful view!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Chicago is an October sort of city even in spring.
Nelson Algren

Today I'm meeting my mom in Chicago to have a fun long, mother-daughter weekend to celebrate her 60th birthday! I haven't been in the city since I was about 8 years old so I can't wait to explore it now (it is my mom's home town).

We have lots planned, can't wait!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower.
Albert Camus

It was sort of as if I woke up last week and while driving to work I realize, "hey, it looks like fall!" Since then I've loved looking at all of the leaves changing. We don't have any spectacular ones in our yard but I've seen such pretty and bright trees while driving around.

this is the first time I've ever seen the leaves change so it's neat to see what it actually looks like. The red leaves are my favorite and I especially like the trees that are split with some parts red, other parts still green and parts yellow.

Here are some of my favorites (Yes, I took the photos from my car. Yes, I'm sure people who saw me thought I was taking a picture of their license plate or something to turn them in!):

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Silent gratitude isn't much use to anyone.
G.B. Stern

Sunday gratitude:
  • the salad bar at Whole Foods.
  • flannel sheets.
  • wearing my new red pea coat for the first time (thanks momma!).
  • appetizers and dips for dinner.
  • charges being filed in the crazy "balloon boy" case.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The manner of giving is worth more than the gift.
Pierre Corneille

I just love inpromtu gifts. Nothing fancy, just a "hey, I saw this and thought of you" kind of thing. At Nick's club yesterday was the closing lunch for the ladies 18-hole golfing group and one of their little gifts was this snazzy lunch box.

Now that I'm working a few shifts a week in the evening again at my part time job from this spring I really want to start bringing my dinner (instead of the tempting Chick-fil-a in the food court!). So I was just talking about how I wanted to get a lunch box at Target or something this weekend.

So Nick snagged one of these from the event yesterday. Isn't it cute? Hopefully to will entice me to full it with yummy food so I don't have to purchase anything while working.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Wisdom is the reward you get for a lifetime of listening
when you'd have preferred to talk.

Doug Larson

My old boss in Florida always had fun stories from her psychic, a great birthday astrology book and zen-like affirmations saved to her desktop. I still repeat a few of them!

She gets daily "notes from the universe" from (you can sign up on the right hand side) and forwarded me this one the other day:

Have you noticed that the more you hurry, the slower you go? The more you wait, the longer it takes? The more you worry, the less you dream? But the more you live, love, and laugh, the more you live, love, and laugh.

Isn't that great? So I signed up, here's mine from today:

If you don't give yourself credit for all that's good in your life, Randall, how can you expect yourself to create more? Because you are flippin' amazing.

I'd highly recommend signing up to receive a little boost in your inbox daily!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Happiness is having a large, loving, caring,
close-knit family in another city.

George Burns

After the Mizzou v. Huskers game on Thursday night we all headed back to St. Louis where Nick's parents and brother, Matt, were staying for the weekend. We were all joined by more of Nick's family on Friday to celebrate his grandma's 80th birthday. It was a nice little vacation for everyone to see the fun stuff in St. Louis and enjoy being together.

On Saturday we took Nick's parents and brother to the Soulard Famers Market which I knew they would love (they did!). Then right next to the market in the streets of Soulard was their annual Oktoberfest. They had great polka bands, homemade potato pancakes (my favorite!) and I especially loved all of the old men in their authentic lederhosen.

At the farmers market


Nick's dad with the "hosts" (they were not members of the Legion running registration!)

He was funny

Dancing to the polka band

That evening we had the whole family (Nick's aunt and uncle, two cousin, one cousin's husband and two kids along with grandma, Nick's parents and brother - phew!) over for dinner. We had a big lasagna dinner, watched a football game and chatted.

Our gift to grandma was a big scrapbook with 80 reasons why we love her. Each "group" (me and Nick, the two grandsons, etc.) listed 10 reasons. She really loved it and it was fun for me to hear all of the memories and see the hold photos.

With the grandkids - Nick's cousins Ann and Beth on the left, Nick and Matt on the right (I love grandma's little crown!)

With grandma's two children - Nick's dad and Aunt Mary on the right
and Nick's mom on the left

With the grandsons - Tyson and Cameron. You can see their mom's hand trying to get Cameron's attention to smile (along with clapping, whistling and hollering!)

Football. More football.

Looking through the scrapbook

Cameron loved Bella. He wouldn't go after her, just sit next to her and say "kitty." She was so confused, "what is this small thing toddling after me around the house?!"

Considering we had a weekend full of football we might as well keep it going! Nick's Uncle Tom is a huge Minnesota Vikings fan and because they were playing the (completely terrible) St. Louis Rams we had to go!

Outside the Edward Jones Dome

Tailgating before the game (Nick with Beth and Uncle Tom)

Nick is an expert scalped ticket buyer. We got a deal on seven tickets!

View from our seats (the air is thinner up there!)

This guy had field posts stuck on his bald head with a suction cup. Funny!

So it was a busy and fun weekend with everyone. I will admit I was exhausted by Sunday night and happy to have my normal schedule back. Glad we could host everyone in our city!
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