Sunday, July 22, 2007

Death & CHA

First, Pat's Uncle Joe passed away this Friday. He lived in Buffalo, NY (where Pat's parents are from)......Pat is headed to NY with his brother & sister for the viewing and funeral early tomorrow morning......I opted (or rather Pat insisted) that I stay behind - even though I feel pretty bad about it. Yes, I know I've never met the man, but Pat is my husband and I want to be able to stand beside him through this kind of stuff. The issue is me sitting in a car for 8 1/2 hours Monday & again on Tuesday - for a total of 17 hours in two days. That's with normal people. I would probably add a little more time onto that if I went to take into account me peeing every two seconds, and needing to stretch my legs, hips and back. I think at most, I might be in the car for work about 5 hours in a day - and even then I'm stopping at least every hour or so to rest and stretch. Medically safe, probably - comfortable and fun for the whole family? Probably not.

We had another death this weekend too - Rev. Dick McCool - a family friend for many years - passed away. He was a paraplegic (or was it quadriplegic?) that lived around the corner from us. Keith and Kyle used to help him out with daily activities when they were in high school......and I think Karli did to some extent as well. He recently had another surgery, which didn't go very well - and slipped into a coma. One he wouldn't awake from :( I didn't know him very well - but he was always the most kind man.......I know he'll be missed.

::::::::::::OK ENOUGH GLOOM AND DOOM:::::::::::::

Before I get myself crying again - lets talk about something more light hearted. I spent most of the weekend at a scrapbook trade show put on by the Craft & Hobby Association. Very very cool experience. I'll be taking photos of the projects that I completed hopefully tomorrow, so I'll share more then - but lets just say it was a whirlwind of seeing all the new products displayed so creatively was about enough to make me want to paper scrap again instead of digital! I MUST venture more into hybrid scrapping......when I get a little more room to work, anyway!

The other cool thing is that I went as a member of the A Cherry On Top creative team - so I was able to meet some of my online friends in real life!!! We got together for dinner on Thursday (I think there was 9 of us) and had a great time! 3 people were the store owners, four of us were on the design team, and two were designers - from all over the US. It was too cool :) And I got to meet some Scrapbook Celebrities - and I even won a book that was signed right there by Becky Higgins herself! It was cool because the book isn't even in distribution yet - not until September 1st - so when we saw the book it was the first time she had as well! Yeah, I know its cheesy, but we all have to have passions, right?

So now, I'm off to bed. Tomorrow is a big work day, and then I have to do some serious cleaning around this house. Ta ta!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Caught in the Act

Oh yeah. He doesn't like my cats at all. No sir. Not one bit. He just tolerates them.

Whatever dude. Just admit you LOVE them!!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Camping Etc.

This weekend Pat O'Brien and I headed out to our first solo camping trip to Illinois Beach State Park. We had fantastic weather, and all in all, I'd say it was a heck of a way to spend a weekend. We mostly just chilled by the campfire or played in the sand (even making a few sandcastles!!!). It was quite a relaxing weekend after a rather hurried, intense work week, and a nice way to enjoy the company of my wonderful husband without the distractions of computers, cell phones and televisions.

Here are a few photos, click on the cluster for a larger view (frames by Nancy Comelab):They came out pretty nice anyway. I'm glad I bought a remote :) I got a few other flower pictures that came out neato burrito, but I'll have to save them for another day. And Holy SCHMOLY man - look at that BELLY! And I still have two months to go!!! Speaking of which - that is mostly why I haven't been religious at posting lately. I'm just so stinkin' tired the last thing I want to do is try to find the least uncomfortable position to sit and type....know what I mean? Actually, during the camping weekend as I was sitting mesmerized by the fire, I wanted to grab my computer and type up a post to capture the contentment and deep thoughts I was having....but that would have required me to get up out of the chair and get my computer in the car, and well, that just wasn't happening!

We did have a couple cool sightings that I didn't capture on "film".....a cute little baby skunk tried to investigate our site, but our flashlight ran it back into the brush. We also saw a momma deer dash across the road, only to be followed by her sweet little spotted fawn. And there were a TON of bats flying around at dusk capturing the plethora of mosquitoes for dinner. A very cool sight....from a distance :) OH - and the STARS! They were just amazing! And, if we looked south we could actually see the light pollution put out by the city of Chicago, even 70 miles north.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Hey, is this heaven? No, it’s Iowa.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to snag a position to golf today with the Dubuque Homebuilders Association. I really wasn’t that heartbroken over the ordeal because already at 8:00AM it was about a billion degrees out, 98% humidity and the sun hadn’t even come out yet. So I was content to plant a kiss on Pat O’Brien at the Tee Box, and make my merry way into the city.

The trip wasn’t a loss though, because I was able to entertain my customer and spend some time with other industry personnel at the great dinner we had last night, and at the local Greyhound Racetrack / Casino into the wee hours of the morning (which, to my pregnant body, is anything after 11:00PM – I made it until about 1:00AM, then I had to call it a night). We also had a dinner this evening after golf, but that is neither here nor there. No big prizes were won – but Pat’s team did win the 1st place in the 2nd flight (whatever that means). So we had a $20 shopping spree in the Pro Shop.

Oh, I guess I should clarify. We’re not actually in Dubuque, IA – we are in East Dubuque, IL, right across the river. All the fun stuff (i.e. CASINOS) is in Iowa, though. Pat taught me how to play craps….which we won a nice little chunk of change last night…although I promptly lost it all at the blackjack tables. We went back again after lunch today and came home $100 or so up. Craps is a fun game – super exciting when lots of people are involved. I don’t think I could explain it to you – but I probably could play for a while and not lose my ass doing it.

Anywho – instead of working (like I should have been – but there wasn’t sufficient internet access) I filled my morning with a trip to a place to cross off my life’s To Do list – visit the Field of Dreams movie filming site. I didn’t really have high expectations, since it is just a ball field in the middle of a corn field. But it was a cool place, and I find it impressionable enough to get a souvenir magnet and poster. There were families running the bases, and groups of young men trying to hit a long ball into the corn. Also I noted lots of people taking pictures, the hot humid air hanging around, people browsing the souvenirs and appreciating the beauty of the tranquil surroundings. Oh and corn, lots of corn. The sad thing about the whole visit was that the feud between the two families that own the site kind of overshadowed the magic and sanctity of the game and the movie. You can read more about the Lansing/Ameskamp rift HERE. Sadly, its always all about money.

Despite the overshadow of the feuds, Field of Dreams is still a great movie. Baseball is still a great game. It was a fitting way to spend the morning heading into the All Star break. Go Tigers :)

“This field, this game, is part of our past. It reminds us of all that was once good, and it could be good again. Oh people will come. People will most definitely come”

- From the movie, Field of Dreams.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

The Massey Trio at Silvie's

Friday night Pat and I traveled a long 3 miles to see Kyle play with The Massey Trio at a bar called Silvie's. I, of course, brought my camera along....even though low light concerts are about the hardest thing to shoot, I did my best and caught a few cool shots. The nice clear ones were taken of Kyle before the show outside.....with Jim's super shiny cool guitar he borrowed since his own is in the shop. The grainy ones are from the actual show. It was hard to get pics of Kyle because there wasn't any direct light on him at all....but I did my best. I'll have the rest loaded up to flickr after I get back home.

This week will be long for me - Pat and I are headed to Dubuque, IA in a few mintues for a customer golf outing, then we'll spend the rest of the week in Sales Meetings. But, on Thursday we'll head to Illinois Beach for a weekend of Camping :) I can't wait!