Thursday, March 28, 2013

Just hanging out....

I found myself with some time on my hands, but not really, this morning. There's a virus affecting the programs I use for work, so until the IT department fixes things, I can't really work, but I can't really do anything else either, since I'm waiting for them to give me the all clear call.

Of course I could do laundry, or dust something, or you know, any number of other "domestic" type things, but.....nah.....

Instead I've been looking around the internet this morning, otherwise known as "using my time wisely".

Look what I found~

And, of course, here's some surveilence video from a store in Redding California. Some people are pretty smart. For sure.

Monday, March 25, 2013


That's really the only way to describe this weekend, unless you're not as dramatic as I am, or your team didn't lose, in which case.....whatever. Good for you, or something.

On Saturday my husband and I went to a movie that started just about the same time as the Gonzaga game was tipping off. Imagine my horror when I checked scores (as soon as the credits started to roll), and found that Gonzaga had LOST!! And my bracket was busted, smashed all to H-E-double hockey sticks!! I couldn't believe Gonzaga would let me down like that, especially after I'd put so much faith and energy into the past 7 days of their season.

It was devastating. As I'm sure you can imagine.

In the end I'm pretty sure it was my fault, if I'd actually been watching the game they might have pulled it off, but I jinxed them my taking my eyes off the TV.  I was wearing my Dream Killer shirt, but in the end it wasn't enough. Sigh. Sorry guys.

Anyway, I said all that to say this.......Here's where things stand at the end of round 3. Read 'em and weep, or rejoice, depending on who you're rooting for. I'm all in for FGCU from here on out.

*Note~Regardless of how many points some of us may have today, if your team is crossed out and highlighted red (pink?) it's really over for you (me). Unless of course none of us has picked the winner, then, I suppose anything goes.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

After round 2.......

......here's where things stand. 
A moment of silence for Jon and the Hoyas would probably be appropriate at this time.

Friday, March 22, 2013

The party never stops....

......like ever. 
A couple of days ago we got the proofs from Nate's cap and gown pictures. 
Most of them were very nice, but one of them.....
I have no idea what's going on here, but I'm telling myself he's just really excited about graduation. 
And also, he's a dork.
I have no idea where he gets it.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

This is not right......

...in fact, it's wrong, really, really wrong
Oh Rory, what are you thinking?

Emily is going to be very upset.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


The calendar is telling me that today is the first day of Spring, but around here it feels a whole lot closer to summer. I didn't used to mind the heat, but I've caught myself being annoyed about it already a few times this year. It's gonna be a long Summer I'm afraid.

A few things~

1. I decided to add my husband and myself to the rotating chore chart at our house, sort of as a show of solidarity, and now I'm thinking that living in a world where we ALL do our share is a little overrated. Mostly I'm thinking that because this week I have to scoop the litter boxes. If ever there was a sucky job, it's scooping the litter boxes, ya know?

2. This van. So sweet. The suit is pretty sweet too.

3. Last chance to join the bracket group. HERE. Games start tomorrow morning!! 

Friday, March 15, 2013

Beware the Ides of March

I can't lie, I'm having a hard time rustling up much enthusiasm for March Madness this year, but don't worry! Rustle I will, for I have no desire to be branded a sore loser or any of that business. The show must go on, even when your team has a crap year, right? 

Selection Sunday is this coming Sunday, as in just a few days from now, as in St. Patrick's Day. As in this week is SO loaded with FUN, Pi Day, the Ides, St.Patrick's Day AND Selection Sunday! Why if I were a drinking man...(YES! I do know that technically Sunday is NEXT week, what's yer point?)

Any who....The odds of Kentucky being selected for much of anything Sunday are slim. I'm still hopefull, but I"m not completely delusional. It's fine. That just means I'm going to have to employ a less emotional/more strategic bracket strategy this year. Maybe I'll actually get some points this time!

Here's a link to the bracket group. It's called Sue's 2013 Group. I know, I'm the best group namer EVER.

Same deal as last year.~
1. Click on the link.
2. If you've played before just use your same login/password from last time, or you can login through your facebook account.
3. Make your selections.
4. When your team wins you get points, whoever has the most points at the end of the tournament wins. (I don't care how your office bookie scores his bracket group, we will be using the handy ESPN rules, which do not require me to do any math, thankyouverymuch.)
5. Winner gets a shirt from any team they want. Unless you don't like prizes, or you feel weird about claiming prizes, or you don't wear shirts. If you're just in it for the glory I get it. (Not really, but I'll pretend like I do so you don't feel awkward.)

You will not be able to start filling in your brackets until Sunday evening after all of the teams have been announced. The group will remain open until tip off of the March 21st games, at that time the group will lock. 

 Links to previous posts obsessing over tournament nonsense. 
HERE (I'm really proud of this one, like, if I were still in high school, I KNOW I could have turned this post in for a grade and gotten a B, maybe even a B+ plus.)
HERE (My brother wrote this one, I guess he knows a couple of things. But don't tell him. He'll get a fatter head.)

P.S.~ Last year I was able to buy an app that let me watch all of the games on my phone. I cannot seem to find this year's version of that app. Help!! Anyone? I NEED that app, or it's cousin. Seriously. 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Last trip post, I promise!

I woke up in the middle of the night realizing that I never told you how the bank card thing turned out. Oops! When we got back to our rental car that evening the card was right there in the little pocket thing on the car door where he'd left it. It was, of course, cancelled by then, and no good to us, but at least it wasn't lost or stolen, and our trip wasn't ruined, so all's well that ends well, or something like that.

Now, one final thing to show you from our trip. I saved the best for last.
It is.......A most excellent toilet seat! 
(Sometimes it's like a bunch of 7 year old boys are running things around here.)

You know those stupid paper seat covers in public restrooms that, no matter how hard you try, always end up with you touching something you wish you hadn't? Well, at O'Hare they have SOLVED THAT PROBLEM YO,  the toilet seats are wrapped in this plastic sleeve thingy, and you don't have to touch ANYTHING!! There's a sensor on the back of the toilet, you wave your hand over it, and ~Viola! A fresh wrap, just for you. 

Look! I made a movie!!

These are the types priceless of technological advances all inventors of nifty stuff should aspire to.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Then we went to town and I took a couple (hundred) pictures.

After we left Wesley at the airport and I recovered from my breakdown, we (I) put on another pair of long underwear and headed back downtown to do some sightseeing. 

This time we were smart and took public transportation. Word to the wise, when you go to Chicago, take advantage of the public transportation. 

There was a station close to our hotel so we parked there and rode the cute two story train, it took us almost all the way to Millennium Park. It was much better than driving and dealing with the traffic and the parking situation. 

{turns out that when you're wearing 2 pairs of gloves sometimes they make their way into your pictures~weird}
I was so obnoxious with the picture taking. I probably stopped every 5 feet to get another shot of.....everything. We only had about 8 hours to fit in as much Chicago as possible, so we tried not to be unrealistic about how much we could see. This might come as a surprise to you, but being realistic about my limits is not one of my strong points. Everyone else was all, "As long as I get some pizza and another one of those hot dogs I don't care what we do."  While I was all, "MUST. DO. EVERYTHING." I stopped short of putting a schedule on paper, but it just about killed me. There were so many things I wanted to do, compared with Sylvan, who just had so many things he wanted to eat. Yin and Yang, that's us.
There were signs all over warning of falling ice. I wasn't sure if they were talking about icicles or chunks of ice falling out of the sky or crazy urban pranksters tossing ice out of the windows 30 stories up. Luckily, I didn't really need to worry about it, I was wearing so many layers it would have taken a pretty large piece of frozen matter for me to have even noticed.
I forgot all about falling ice and my frozen toes when I saw this.......
Go on, click on the picture so you can see it close up.
Fanciest Target EVER. Right?
This is the entry-
Could you die? 
The Chicago-ites coming into Target to buy deodorant and cat litter totally gave me the stink eye when I waved them to the side so I could get a good picture of the lobby. That's what happens when people have too much good stuff, they take it for granted. City people. Sheesh.

Then, as if fancy pants Target wasn't enough, this place was right across the street! 
The only food establishment on my must see list. 
I got the caramel with almonds, you should too, unless you don't like nuts, in which case you are nuts, cause who doesn't like nuts? 
Look!! More very very tall buildings!!

 Deep dish pizza. Natch.
It was ok. I'm not a huge fan of the sauce on top, but there were like 10 TV's showing different basketball games in the restaurant so I made the best of it.
(Dear Syracuse, Sorry for your loss. I hate to admit it, but Louisville is having a good year. It goes that way sometimes.)
We had just finished eating when tragedy (and I use the term very loosely) stroke (struck? striked? rained down upon us?~ something NOT good had happned, ok?). Sylvan reached into his wallet and his bank card was missing. 
Here's the thing, I LOVE Sylvan, love love love him, but he loses stuff. Or maybe I should say, he misplaces stuff. Often. I probably would've been more concerned about the bank card if his entire wallet had been missing, but it was wasn't, nor was any of his cash or the other two bank cards he carries around, the only thing missing was card we were planning to use to pay for the trip. OF COURSE! I was pretty positive we'd find it in some logical spot, like the nightstand in our hotel room, so I paid for lunch with another card while Sylvan tried not get all freaked out.

That did not work. He got a tinsy bit freaked out, and by the time we got to Cloud Gate (half a block away) he was having serious visions of some maniac spending up all of our money. (Which would not have taken very long, I feel sorry for the maniac who steals our bank card and thinks he's gonna have a night on the town. Sucker.)
This is me being all touristy while Sylvan calls the bank to cancel his card. 
I was not about to let a little thing like a little thievery ruin my day, especially when I was pretty sure no theft had actually taken place, also we were on a tight schedule, and I'd taken a pill before we left the hotel. 

Eventually we made it to the Art Institute of Chicago, where I made everyone suffer by forcing them to look at art for 3 hours in retaliation for taking me to cheese castles and restaurants with nothing but hot dogs and sausages on the menu.
It was awesome.

Why yes, that is a string of Christmas lights and a pile of candy. 
Art. It's subjective. 
What'er ya gonna do?

Sylvan isn't still sad about his bank card here, he just doesn't like being in pictures.
After the museum we walked a mile and a half to the giant American Girl Doll store, where doll clothes cost more than people clothes. It was pretty huge and impressive, for a doll store. Ivy would have been in heaven!
Then we walked more miles back to the train station where we ended up missing our train because we read the schedule wrong so we had to wait for an hour and a half for the next train, just us and the homeless guys. Not creepy AT ALL!

So, that's it. We went on a trip, it was pretty fun. 

One last thing~ I really want to thank everyone who lent me warm clothes, gave me travel advice, slipped me drugs, and helped with our kids while we were gone (especially the saint who came and got Ivy when she started sobbing 30 minutes after we left our house, because, "She juuuust miiiissed us sooooo much, hic, sob, alreadyyyyy!" (like mother like daughter, eh?). I have the best friends EVAH! Thanks guys!!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

And I was so happy that I had an meltdown. Obviously.

After the graduation Wesley was able to spend the rest of the day with us. The first thing he wanted to do was take a shower, apparently showering in Boot Camp is a little rushed and not so private. After his long hot shower he put his uniform back on and we drove to Chicago. The plan was to maybe do a little sightseeing, grab some dinner, and have Wes back to base by 8:00. Since it was just after noon this seemed totally doable. HA! Listen, we are not farmers, we live in/near a city, we have been to town before, but we were fools to think we could just drive into Chicago, park on the street, grab some pizza, and get out of Dodge. First, the traffic was madness, Friday afternoon and all, then it was going to cost our life savings to park anywhere, plus we had made the mistake of being spontaneous and not looking up a restaurant beforehand. It didn't take too many obscene gestures from cab drivers before we knew we were out of our league. So, to quote Siri, we "recalculated".

We decided to head back towards the base and stop for dinner at the first place that tempted us.

On the way we passed this sign, which for some reason I found hilarious. I guess we'll see who's laughing in a few years when I'm petitioning my own city to post some in my neighborhood. 
Then we passed this Target. Upstairs, shopping, downstairs, parking. City folk think of everything.
This isn't a great picture, we were driving, but that is Lake Michigan. The white is a layer of snow/slush on top of the water. It was just sloshing around like it was no big deal. Crazy I tell ya.
Then, like a Christmas miracle, we came upon Wolfy's. I know, it doesn't look like much, but happened that it was one of the places on Sylvan's list of best hot dog joints in Chicago. (Don't even get me started on the fact that a list of best hot dog joints even exists.) Who in their right mind could resist eating at a place with a giant hot dog for their sign? Not us, that's for sure.
Here's a stained glass tribute to Wolfy, the original owner of Wolfy's. There was no plaque, but I assume it was his secret recipe that made the place famous.
It's really not fair for me to be too critical, the sad fact is, Chicago dining is not exactly vegetarian friendly. While everyone else enjoyed their Chicago Dogs, piled high with onion, pickles, tomatoes, and who knows what else, I enjoyed an order of fried mushrooms and an ice cream cone. Not the worst meal I've ever had for sure. The carnivores all gave the place two thumbs up. And Wesley made this face when I wanted to take his picture. I guess there are some things even the Navy can't change.

While we were eating we called Nate and Eli at home and they were able to Skype us using my iphone. 

(This is where I tell you how much closer my phone and I have become after taking a trip together. If you thought I loved her before, you cannot even imagine how much stronger our bond is now. She told us how to get EVERYWHERE, she made it possible for our kids to see and talk to one another FROM A HOT DOG JOINT IN ANOTHER STATE!!!, and when there was some confusion over Wesley's flight information for Saturday morning, the Facebook app, and all of those strangers that I was too nervous to go meet on Friday night, helped us nail down the details, thus averting another panic attack. My phone and I are never ever breaking up. Ever. Please imagine you just read that paragraph while Kip Dynamite sang the Technology Song in the back ground.) 

On Saturday Wesley was flying to Pensacola for his A-school. All of the sailors get dropped of at the same time no matter what time their flight is leaving. That meant that Wesley would be arriving at O'Hare at around 4:00 a.m. We wanted to be sure we would get to spend some time with him before his flight left and we didn't want to take a chance that we might not connect, we decided we would get to the airport at the same time his bus did, so we got up at 3:00 in the morning and drove to O'Hare. I have never been so tired and so cold at the same time. 

We pulled up right as the buses were arriving, Sylvan dropped me off then he went and parked in a lot so far away that he had to take a bus AND a train back to the terminal (Way to make things harder than they need to be O'Hare, sheesh.), and I got to see them all walk in together. Which, naturally made me cry again. But not a sob cry, and honestly, I blame at least half of those tears on exhaustion and hypothermia. It was pretty impressive. There were probably 200 young men and young women at the airport, some of them waiting 8 hours or more for their flights, basically left to their own devices after 8 weeks of being told when to breathe, they could have gotten crazy if they'd wanted to, but they stayed in uniform and were so respectful and, just really, dignified. There may be hope for the future after all. 

We stayed with Wesley at the airport for a few hours. We hung out, ate some over priced pastries, and took pictures at all of the required posing locations.

Then we hugged him really tight and said goodbye again, but this time it wasn't so bad. He's able to have his phone and a computer now and we've been able to talk or text everyday since he got to Florida. His school there is short so we'll be seeing him at home in about a month. I didn't cry at all.......until we got in the car, then I started sobbing and talking about how proud I am of him, and all of our kids, and how I don't deserve such great kids, and how I couldn't feel my hands because I think wearing two pairs of gloves was cutting off the circulation, and that I was starving because I hadn't eaten anything but fried vegetables in two days. Poor Sylvan. Sometimes even great drugs and an amazing phone aren't enough to hold back the crazy.

Coming tomorrow......I turn into the most obnoxious tourist since the Griswolds visit to Paris.