Wednesday, February 28, 2007

frickin frackin sonova....


since we got in trouble for not notifying "The Board" of my move in on Monday, I decided to be ULTRA cautious and call yesterday just to make sure that they were aware the Salvation Army was coming today to take a few boxes out. We're talking, like 6 boxes, a couple of shelves, and some miscellaneous house tools. The chick said OK great, and she also told us that "The Board" wasn't going to enforce the fine this time, as a warning. I was all like, "Yippie! I don't have to feed the dragons $250!!!" and very happy that I called.

This morning, as I'm standing guarding the front gate (per "The Board" regulations), some old dude (obviously not someone who lives here) comes in and our conversation goes something like this:

Old Dude (saying to no one in particular): Who's moving in?
Me (yelling across the courtyard to him): No one. I'm donating some items to Salvation Army. Hence the Salvation Army parked out front. I notified "The Board" yesterday.
Old Dude: Why aren't you using the back entrance?

**side note** The back entrance is a patio door that is essentially the fire exit. It has stairs that go up and down every six feet or so, and they don't shovel that area so it is always inevitably icy and snowy and dangerous (not to mention HORRIBLY inconventient) to even take a bag of trash out to the back alley, let alone a dolly with a ton of boxes and shelves. **end side note**

Me: Um....I wasn't aware that we had to use the back entrance. I called and talked to Luanna and she didn't mention any specific instructions except giving notification that someone was going to be taking boxes out of the house.
Salvation Army Super Cool Guy: I told her we wouldn't use the back entrance because its too icy and dangerous, so its my fault.
Old Dude: Well, I'll have to go review the rules and regulations, but I thought you had to move in and out of the back entrance.
Me: OK - whatever. I'm Karin by the way (outstretch hand)
Old Dude: Alan. Gold.

Salvation Army Super Cool Guy (after Dude walks out): Who the hell was that guy? A busybody neighbor or landlord or something?

I'm really not exactly sure who the old dude was....I think Alan Gold might be the A Gold in AP Gold Realty (the management company). It doesn't matter who it was - he was just an old, curmudgeonly guy. Period.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Oh. My. God.

Have you ever seen the TLC Show Clean Sweep? Thats what I feel like right now - the condo is INUNDATED with stuff. The movers came yesterday morning and brought in the 60 or so boxes....then unpacked them for me too. We decided to take that option because it is such a pain in the ass to take out the garbage - and I wasn't looking forward to lugging boxes and a TON of packing material around. So they unpacked took all the garbage with them.

**side note** We didn't know (or rather, forgot) to call the management company that I was moving in that day - so we could face a $250 fine. I just about flipped!!!!! What the heck? And if we did notify them what would we get? Nothing. UGH. But, rules are rules I guess - and if I had bothered to read the Rules and Regulations of the Association the three weeks I was living here I would have known to let them know. Lets not forget that I only had minimal notification myself (they called Friday night to deliver on Monday morning). Whatev. They can kiss my patootie. I guess that is just part of dealing with living in the city. **end site note**

My boss so graciously agreed to let me stay home this week to unpack and rearrange. I'm slowly but surely going through our things, making a donation pile, sorting things out that need to go into storage - etc. I've made my way, more or less, through the kitchen, and now I'm just trying to get the rest into manageable piles. I've also managed to not be too stressed out so far, which is good I think. Usually when the movers drop everything off I cry my eyeballs out. But in a way, right now, it feels good - I'm really making this home "Ours" instead of just "His" and that is a great transition!!

Oh, Pat did make it home on Sunday night after canceling his Southwest return ticket and coming home on Delta. He made it sometime around the end of the Oscars (which, by the way, I thought were fabulous). He conveniently had to leave around 12-ish, right around when the movers were just starting to unpack. He'll come home tomorrow night, pending no major snowstorms here or in Minneapolis. I hope to have the majority of the stuff sorted / separated by then. It might appear as if he's shirking, but really, I'd rather him be gone so I can settle in myself. Does that make sense?

I guess its time to get back to work....maybe lunch first though....tootle-loo!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Baby Its Cold Outside!!

Poor poor me - with no one to cuddle :( Pat is still in Orlando - and still sick. We're hoping he still can make it home tomorrow morning, but its not lookin' good. Southwest already canceled all the flights for tonight, so unless the ice / wintery mix holds off until late tomorrow (which, judging by the howling wind and sleet hitting the windows right now, it won't) he probably won't be home at 9:00AM.

That's a picture I took today on my way home from the Museum of Science and Industry...the lake was looking rather angry with all the cold cold wind, so I stopped at a park to take some photos of the splashes and came across a couple of trees that were all icy from the splashes. They looked so cool! That's Navy Pier in the background - you can see the ferris wheel!

I was on my way back from the MSI because I met my primo (cousin for all you non-Spanish speakers) Will there after my wedding dress fitting. He and his wife are members, so we got to check it out for free! Definitely cool on its own, but even cooler when its free! We saw baby chicks hatching, entire cities reconstructed into model train thingies, an OmniMax movie (Hurricane on the Bayou) and some Switzerland crazy ball thing. I know - I'm so descriptive! It was awfully cool hangin out with him - its like having a friend already built into Chicago! He and Amberlicious (his wife) live about a half hour or so away from us in Des Plaines. I'm sure we'll get to see each other lots!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Home sweet Home

Pat is in Orlando this weekend for some kind of trade show. I was super jealous because I wanted to fly there too so I could go visit Mickey and such.....but it is probably better that I'm just staying home. It will give me some time to settle in here and make it feel like more "My" home, know what I'm saying dude? Apparently the weather is gorgeous, but he's come down with some nasty sort of cold/flu poor poor honeybuns. I told him to fly home so I could take care of him - what's the point of living in the same country if I can't take care of him when he's feeling all icky? Humph...the nerve of him getting sick while he's away on business!!!

Anyway, he'll be gone for most of the rest of this month and the first couple weeks of March practically - training, learning, giving presentations, getting some ins at various associations. He's in Orlando now, I think he's got Minnesota, the UP of Michigan and Dayton lined up so far. I think there is one more in there somewhere, but I can't remember at the moment. He gets home Sunday from Orlando then is leaving Monday afternoon for MN - it kind of stinks....I was just getting used to having him around - but since we're pretty much old pro's at this being apart stuff its not that big of a deal. It just means I can be super messy and not clean up after myself while he's gone :)

What else is new - oh, wedding plans. We still don't have everything settled - I'm pretty much just praying for nice weather so I don't have to worry about it.....we bought Pat's suit last week and will be getting rings after he gets back next week...I have another dress fitting tomorrow. I'll try to get the rest of it figured out this weekend.

OH OH OH! They located a new vehicle for me! WHOO HOO!! not sure when I'm actually going to get it, but they at least found one! It's a white Jeep Grand Cherokee 4x4, which is cool since I've never had a white car before! I'm excited to get it so I can finally stop having these stinking rentals. Ugh.

OK, tis all for now. Have a great weekend everyone!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

I swear, I'm alive

Ok people - lets give me some time to settle in here before I get more grief for not updating! I don't have a regular routine yet, and I'm sure once I do, I will be posting more regularly.

Besides, there hasn't been much to report on anyway. I've been trying to find the motivation to complete my final two reports from my Mexico assignment (with no luck so far). I'm blaming the games we downloaded for Wii - Super Mario Brothers from old school Nintendo, and Super Mario World from Super Nintendo. We also downloaded Super Mario Kart for Nintendo 64, but I haven't been able to get into that much cuz I stink so bad. We've pretty much been obsessed with playing those since my air shipment arrived with my wireless modem (which was, I dunno - Tuesday maybe?). Oh, and my early Valentine's Day present to Pat was two classic controllers so we could actually play the games :) How romantic am I!?!

I just got word that my land shipment just cleared US Customs, and it is on its way to Naperville for storage. Then I'll have to arrange a delivery date. I'm actually quite impressed, I didn't expect it until at least early to mid March.

We've got shit piles of snow lately, but it was rather warm yesterday and sunshiney so its mostly melted and gone. It definitely was a shock to my system, having to cover all parts of my body thoroughly before heading outside.....I guess I should get used to it though,right? I'll be here for a while!

OH! Our weekend projects....well, we've successfully installed wardrobes from IKEA, but we wanted to turn the 2nd bedroom / office closet into something a little more useful. We decided on the ELPHA system from The Container Store (which was on sale this weekend too! 30% off!!!) and it was MEGA easy! And, it looks absolutely fantastic. Honestly, I think we had the whole thing assembled and installed in less than 90 minutes. A much better experience than IKEA! I think it helped that we had an assembly run through with the closet design people too....oh, and she helped us decided what we wanted and needed to have in there as far as shelves, spacing, etc. We're very happy with it! Here's the before and after shots:

:::::::::::::::::::::: BEFORE ::::::::::::::::::::::

:::::::::::::::::::::: AFTER ::::::::::::::::::::::

Looks pretty good eh? I also picked up some clear shoe storage boxes, and another shelving unit for the bottom of one of Pat's closets.

Also this weekend - our first whole house cleaning session. It took us about 4 hours, but really should have only been two - we spent two hours fighting about it :) No worries now though - all is calm in paradise once again!

So really, all we have left to do is make another large donation to goodwill again once all my stuff arrives, and then get the other stuff into storage that we can't keep here, and we'll be in really good shape! I might actually feel like its my house after that! I'm almost there now......but until everything has a place I still feel a little off, know what I mean?

OK, Pat is playing Super Mario Brothers without me, so I

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Sorry Sorry Sorry!

I just realized (thanks to some pointing out from friends) that I never posted that we arrived safe and sound in Chicago.

So - officially - WE'RE HERE!!!!

We got in late Friday night, and I've pretty much taken an internet break since, what's been going on? Well......

Keith went home on Sunday with my parents who were so gracious to drive down in the inclement weather and pick him up. Pat and I went to IKEA and bought a whole bunch of stuff so we can have a home office and a place to put all my clothing. We started to put together the wardrobe, but we kind of sort of put the doors on wrong :) oopsie! Pat put everything else together while I am away (I'm in Dundee right now for some super training). The other wardrobe and door fix will have to wait til I get home tomorrow afternoon.

I did have a chance to have lunch and dinner with old friends, which is always enough to put me in a REALLY good mood! And the training has actually been really good, which is always a bonus!

This weekend I have a scrappy thing on Saturday morning, and then we'll be putting together the rest of the furniture. Oh, and we have an appointment with a photographer tomorrow too! I'm getting married in 6 weeks!

Friday, February 02, 2007

day two

Laredo to Sherman, Texas. 10 hours and we're still in the same state!!! Not much to report here - now that we're in the US we've been driving like normal people, seeing as how your actions actually bring consequences here :) Texas is flat. And there was lots of rain around the Dallas area ......not to mention we hit Dallas right at rush hour (thats what happens when I plan to not plan).

No cheerleader bladder issues, but I did have a nice bout of diarrhea in the morning. Luckily I had some immodium close at hand (hey, I DID live in Mexico for over a year, remember? never go too far without that stuff) so it subsided....after we stopped three times in 45 minutes.

We're about ready to take off now - it is currently snowing here, but nothing we can't handle. I'll let you all know when we're safe and sound in Chicago!

Thank you God for a safe trip AMEN!!!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

day one

We left Toluca Mexico behind us at about 6:30 AM, with Keith behind the wheel first. We were both anxious to get the hell out of Dodge - Keith so much so that whilst jammin out to some 311 he managed to miss the exit to the highway........and since turn arounds are few and far between, we took about a 30 minute detour to get us back on track.

No big deal though :)

We made stops every couple hours due to my new cheerleader (read: tiny) bladder I have been experiencing of late (hmm.....maybe Pat O'Brien is rubbing off on me?), but Keith didn't mind driving the first 6 hours of the trip. I drove the next four, then Keith for a bit, then me across the border. There was little to see or do across Mexico except drive 100 mph and keep your eyes peeled for Federales.

There was an American Caravan of about for cars - us included - that traversed a good chunk of Mexico (San Luis Potosi through Monterrey - about 500 miles or so) going at least 90 mph....minimum. I yelled at Keith on our trip down here last year for going
100 mph, but when I was behind the wheel I understood why. There is NOTHING but cactus, desert and the occasional burro.....its hard to NOT drive so fast!

We passed through two military check points without so much as a second glance, and we did encounter quite a few Federal Police - one which I was FOR SURE was going to pull us over, but they didn't.

I did decide to pass on a random act of kindness and pay a $50 peso toll for a car behind me.......we caught up to them at a rest area about 5 hours later and the guy was like - "um, did you mean to pay for another car?" I told them nope, I was just trying to be nice. It felt pretty good I tell you! I highly recommend doing unsuspecting things for random people.

After canceling our permission for the car, crossing the border, and checking into our hotel we had a nice dinner at Chili's before calling it a night. This morning I woke up, worked out at the gym, we had a good breakfast and we're just getting ready to hit the road again. I didn't have any plan except to make it to the US in one day, and we've done that, so we're just going to play the rest of the trip by ear.

Thank you God for a safe Trip - AMEN!