Saturday, June 28, 2008

Catching Up

This week was one of those CRAZY weeks! I would have blogged sooner, but by the time I got around to getting on the computer it was too late to think straight. And wireless internet is down at our house, and when you're crazy tired the only decent way to be on the computer is laying in bed with your laptop. So, to sum this paragraph up, I was too tired/lazy to get on the desktop. And I even took pictures that don't really apply anymore : (.

Wednesday we had another great Bible study. I don't know if I've mentioned it before, but I lead the CI class girl's Bible study. For the summer we are studying different psalms. This last week we studied Psalm 63, which is one of my favorite psalms. It was such an eye opener this week. Let's face it, we all know that I am a complainer by nature. If I stub my toe I have to tell at least three people about it. So, to read about David, who is on the run from his son Absalom, and how he is willing to seek God, glorify God, hunger and thirst for God, call God's love better than life, and earnestly seek Him...Well, needless to say, it was a swift kick in the rear. I don't face nearly what David must have faced in his life, and yet I grumble and complain and whine instead of earnestly seeking God, remembering His past blessings, and looking forward to His blessings in the future.

Thursday I got to go to Cold Stone to celebrate Ashley's birthday. If I've never told you how much I LOVE Cake Batter ice cream, let me just tell you now. I LOVE CAKE BATTER ICE CREAM. Oh, and Ashley is really cool too! Oh, but even before that, at exactly 2:17pm I was able to drop off my last client of the week. Boy, was that a relief, although that also meant I had TONS of paperwork to look forward to that afternoon and Friday.

Friday I procrastinated as much as possible about doing my paperwork, but in the end had to buckle down, because, let's face it, it was due that day and I didn't really want to be at work until 5:00 if I didn't have to be. So, I managed to leave work at 3:30. Hooray for the weekend! Friday evening I was able to spend the evening with 7 of my cool friends for an early birthday celebration. We went mini golfing and then to Kari's for dessert and Wii playing. Now, when I sent out the birthday invite, I respectfully let everyone know that since it was my birthday, they needed to let me win mini golf. Suspiciously enough, I came in dead last. Hmmm...maybe I should think about getting new friends....

Saturday I refused to get out of bed before 10am. : ). Then I got ready and went to buy my new couch for my new apartment (the one I talked about a couple of posts back). It will be delivered the day before I officially move in! I am SO excited. My new roomie went with me and we were able to sit on the couch and chat while the guy looked it up to see if it was in the warehouse. It felt right. I also almost bought a dresser, which I will probably go back and buy later this week. Then I came home and finished sorting the boxes I brought home from my mom's. I found an old card game that I used to like to play and taught Daynah. Then I did some paperwork for work (that's why I was able to leave at 3:30!). Then I balanced my checkbook. Then I started blogging. Yippee!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

High Maintenance

Apparently, I have a high maintenance brother! Josh left for camp for a week. It's his first time away from home for that long. So Amy and I were discussing how we think he is doing. Well, I am used to him, but she was telling me about an email that she sent to the children's minister at the church, and I started laughing at all the things she had to be warned about. Number one, Josh gets carsick, so Amy packed him a barf bag. He has to sit close to the front on the bus. Number two, he sleepwalks. Not just every once in a while, but almost every time he is short on sleep. Number three, he used to wake up with night terrors. This hasn't happened in a while, but he used to wake up about once a week screaming as if he was being eaten alive. He falls back to sleep and doesn't remember any of it in the morning. I think that's actually it, but three pretty major things to have to watch out for when you have a kid at camp. Too bad for his counselor!

Oh, and I got home from work today to discover my chairs had been moved in the garage. I didn't think anything of it until I heard that Daynah and her friend had been racing to see who could push off the wall and slide the furthest since the chairs are on wheels! I told Daynah she better not break my chairs or she would be in BIG trouble!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

An Assortment of Pictures Per Someone's Request

I was the first to point out that I hadn't posted any pictures in a while. So I've been lazy. But at least I've been posting something : ). Now, I have ten pictures to share that I took today!

This is the yard at my dad's house. Notice that there is no grass. The yard was completely gutted two weeks ago in order to reseed and relandscape.
For awhile, with the rain, we had a mud pit. Sorry I didn't invite anyone over to mud wrestle. I didn't want to show everyone up with my superior skills.
This is the concrete and poles that will eventually become the new privacy fence going up around the yard. The fence is a necessity because...
This is our new swimming pool! Well, the hole that was dug for the installation of the swimming pool, anyway. Kind of fishy that we are getting a pool just a few weeks before I move out!
And these boxes are the swimming pool! The guys are coming to install it tomorrow, I think.

And in more interesting developments...

These are the boxes I brought back from my grandma's house. I have been through several of them.
Notice the box to the back right, on the floor. This, so far, is the only stuff I intend to take to the apartment : )
In one of the boxes were these two books. When I was in 6th grade, we wrote our own stories. Then we illustrated them and made the covers. Once we were all through with the books, we took them to the elementary school to read to the students. Two things are ironic in this story. Number one, my illustrations would look the same if I drew them today. Number two, my grandma, who loves me dearly, proposed that I get them published. She might be a little biased.
And here are my two chairs. Aren't they so cute : ).
Here is the story of the chairs, as I remember it (which I've learned in the past couple of months I might not have remembered it too accurately). My grandpa either had these chairs made or bought them specifically because they were lower to the ground and he and my grandma were both shorter. I think the chairs are older than me. They were originally covered in 70s orange material--very up and coming when they were purchased. My aunt eventually had them recovered in this fabric, I would say about 10 years ago. So, the fabric is wearing thin (apparently the fabric was not upholstery fabric). I remember my grandpa and grandma sitting in these chairs from when I was very young. Eventually, as my grandma got older, she got a recliner and the chairs moved to the living room. That is where they have been until now. Now they are temporarily being stored in my garage until I move. Then hopefully I will be able to fit them into my apartment. It might have to be one in the bedroom and one in the living room. But they are mine, and for that I am very excited! : )

I hope this satisfies the lack of pictures from previous posts.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

The Move is Officially Upon Me

Well, not yet, but I started some stuff this weekend. I am officially moving into my new apartment on July 12. I am VERY excited! However, here is what I am discovering. I have a bunch of JUNK!

I took a trip to Chicago Friday night and part of Saturday in order to load all my junk into my dad's van. My mom has been storing all of my stuff from Georgia at my grandma's house. So, this is stuff that didn't make the cut to be moved to Texas. Which means I haven't seen it in 5 years. Do you think there is a lot of valuable stuff in that? Not really. Here is what I decided, as I quickly looked through boxes:

1/4 of the stuff will just need to be thrown away
1/4 will be put aside for a garage sale in the fall (mostly nick-nacks that I no longer want or need)
1/4 of the stuff is stuff from my childhood that I don't want to display but I can't bear to get rid of, so Dad and Amy have graciously said they would store it (although I'm not sure they knew how much I would be bringing home)
1/4 of the stuff will actually move to the new apartment

Plus I got to bring back two chairs that I inherited/begged for from my grandma. They are in pretty bad condition and really need to be recovered, but I need to buy a couch first so that I know how I want to recover them. So, if you come visit the apartment, you'll just have to bear the ugliness until I can get them recovered. It's also going to cost way too much money. Everyone told me I was silly for wanting the chairs, but for some reason they just have a lot of sentimental value and I'd rather spend the money recovering them than buying new chairs. And lets face it, I have been trying to talk my grandma into giving me these chairs for about 10 years. The interesting thing is that up until about 2 months ago, I was only going to be able to take 1 chair because one of my cousins was going to get the other one, but she decided she didn't want it. So now I have a matched set of really ugly chairs. Maybe I'll take a picture of them so you can see them, for those of you who are far away and won't be visiting my apartment any time soon.

So, here are some items I have found that I don't know what to do with: a box full of Sweet Valley High books, a box full of Babysitter's Club books, about three boxes of porcelain dolls that I collected from elementary through high school, a couple boxes of picture albums/Rubbermaid containers full of pictures, and a box full of cabbage patch kid dolls plus baby clothes to dress them in. These are some of the things I don't really want to get rid of, but is it really practical to store them FOREVER? Mom says my daughter might want them someday, but as everyone might point out, I have no daughter and even if I have one, will she REALLY want them?

Last, but certainly not least, here is a link to the couch I'm thinking of getting. What does everyone think?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

"So Far Away"

I was listening to the radio last week and this song has stuck in my mind for about a week.

So far away
Doesn't anybody stay in one place anymore.
It would be so fine to see your face at my door...

I miss my friends who don't live close to me. This week they have felt really far away. When something exciting is happening, I wish I could tell them face-to-face instead of over the phone. When something bad happens, I wish they were near so I could cry with them. I wish I could hold my friend Christy's new baby. I wish I could be in the waiting room for Danell to tell me the second she comes out what the sex of her twins is. I wish I could help Lisa move into her new apartment. I wish Lisa could help me move into my new apartment.

Don't get me wrong, I am SO THANKFUL for all my Peoria friends and love to spend time with them. But they can't replace the friends I have left behind. And I am so thankful for email and telephones so that I can keep up with everyone. Sorry, it's just a random emotional day. Sometimes it stinks to be emotional : ).

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Man do I feel old

I was tucking Josh into bed tonight and he said, "Where do you get all your weird shirts?" So, I looked down to see what shirt I was wearing. I laughed on the inside and then informed him that, "Actually this shirt is older than you are." I realized I was wearing a shirt of a band that my roommate from college was in when she was in high school. I bought the shirt as a senior in high school, which makes the shirt 11 years old. YIKES! The shirt is in remarkably good condition! Well, worth the investment of supporting the band who ironically broke up the next year. : ) But they are all still friends. And I still like the shirt.

Monday, June 16, 2008

A Very Busy Weekend Ending with a Very Random Road Trip

Sorry I have no pictures to make this post less wordy : ).

Friday I got off work about 3:00! YEAH! I did some running around and then met my future roommate for a quick dinner and a look at the apartment (For those of you who don't know yet, I am moving on July 12...more about my apartment another day). Then I went straight to Friday Night Impact, where I arrived about 35 minutes late. Oops. A group of guys who just got back from Dallas, TX spoke about their trip ministering to Iraqi refugees. After FNI, a group of us went to see Iron Man. Yes, we went to the 10:00 showing, no I didn't get home before midnight (but don't worry, I didn't turn into a pumpkin!)

Saturday I got up at about 8:30 so that I could be ready in time for my step mom's Pampered Chef party. Jan made wonderful Taffy Apple pizza. YUMMY! I also got talked into hosting a party in July since I will be moving to my own apartment. So, expect invitations in the mail : ). For those of you who don't get invitations, but want to come, let me know. Or if there is something that you have been dying to have, but can't come, you can still order something from me! Oh, the party is July 26. After the party, I had about two hours of free time before I went on a Career Impact scavenger hunt around Peoria. It was so much fun. I was able to learn a lot more about Peoria from our crazy travels around the city! After the scavenger hunt we went back to Tim's house and had dinner and watched a slide show of all the pictures taken and then hung out. After that a group of us went over to the church to help Kari and Kelli clean up after a wedding. Then Kelli invited us over to her condo to enjoy some ice cream and a little more fellowship. No I did not get home before midnight!

Sunday I went to church as usual. During Sunday School we learned that some people were driving out to Iowa to help with the efforts to try to save a whole bunch of farms from flooding. Several friends have families who have been effected by the Iowa River levee breaking and several more families who could be effected if the Mississippi River levee breaks. So, we decided to take a road trip to Iowa for the day. We all hustled home to say a quick Happy Father's Day to our dads, change clothes, grab something to eat, and meet at the church at 2:00. We got off to a late start, but arrived just outside of Burlington, Iowa around 4:30. The impact of these floods is too much to express in words. We were able to see the 17,000 acres of land flooded by the Iowa River. And then they put us to work on the levee sandbagging by the Mississippi. We were less than 10 feet away from the Mississippi River. It was CRAZY. When it started getting dark, we headed back to the sandbagging station at the church and helped fill and tie sandbags for a couple of hours. We then grabbed something quick to eat and headed home. No I did not get home before midnight.

Monday, I am very tired and very sore. I'm pretty sure it hurt every time I had to get paper towels in the bathroom at work today. Do I regret anything I did this weekend. Absolutely not. I had fun doing everything. I was glad that I could help the families that we helped. Please continue to pray for the families still working to save their farms as well as those who are reeling from the effects of losing their farms. The last information I heard was that they are expecting the Mississippi River to crest either Wednesday or Thursday. If the levee holds that long, the families should be out of danger for now.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Don't worry, I'm not dead

Actually, I'm surprised I haven't gotten the usual, "Maybe you should post something new" comment from Storm yet (while we're on the subject, I haven't heard from him in a while...maybe someone should check to make sure he isnt' dead...), because he is so very regular about posting on his own blog. But I've gotten myself on a tangent already...

Computers are wonderful things when they work. That should explain enough, but I'll elaborate, simply because it's what I do best. Why use 7 words when you could use 37? Don't answer that. Oh, and I digress again. So, our Internet went kaput last Thursday sometime and did not get fixed until Sunday. And by "fixed" I don't mean that my laptop worked, but I think the desktop in the house worked. Maybe, before this story gets too boring and long winded, I should mention that we currently have one desktop and 3 laptops in our house (and doesn't that make us sound either super-rich or really stupid). So, my dad's coworker came over Monday night to fix all of the laptops, since we could only get Internet on the desktop. I was here, I saw my laptop working with my own two eyes and even read a couple of emails before my battery died. When I tried to log back on to the Internet, it no longer worked. So sad. Then, the desktop randomly started freezing up every other time anyone clicked on anything. Very sad. And apparently, I've never had use for the two other laptops and so no one has entrusted me with the passwords to them. Extremely sad. Needless to say, I was SUPER excited when I arrived home today to the wonderful words "Your computer is fixed." So, here I am, enjoying the luxuries of blogging while lying in bed. Of course, I should be sleeping, but that is a story for another day...

Sunday, June 8, 2008


I normally consider myself a pretty smart person. But I have my random "duh" moments. I've been counting down to my birthday since the count was in the hundreds. Now that it is less than 30 days, I realized that I could put a counter on my blog to countdown for everyone. Then I don't have to remind you every so many posts. The best part of my limited search for a ticker...they only have countdowns for babies and kids' birthdays. Apparently adults aren't allowed to look forward to their birthday. Too bad. I do.

Oh, and I changed the colors to match the ticker : ).

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

High Class Living

So, I work in an old building. There is a lot to be said for old buildings, but most of the things that come out of my mouth aren't the most positive. We don't have central air. I can handle that, but we never know when the window units will be put into the windows. I was impressed this year that they went in after only one really hot day! Hooray to the great maintenance men! Now, don't get me wrong. I am EXTREMELY thankful for the window units we have, but as you can see from the pictures below, they have spared no expense. Only the top of the line, high quality units for us...

Here we have the top-of-the-line, brand-spankin'-new deluxe model, complete with duct tape and plywood to cover the excess window not covered by the air conditioner.
Here's a close-up. Also note the missing knob that actually turns the air conditioner on. Either we move the knob from the temperature gauge to turn it on/off and risk breaking the one good knob we have, or we unplug it directly from the wall. It's all very safe, have no fear. I've never seen sparks or anything. And we're old pros, because this air conditioner is specifically assigned to our office! We wouldn't want to share it with anyone else!
The green you see in this picture is the leaves in the tree outside my window. In plain view from where the bottom of the air conditioner doesn't actually sit on the windowsill! I'm sure we'll have some "friendly" visitors throughout the summer from this hole--wasps, flies, etc.

But in all of this, I really am not complaining. I love that I have been cool in my office this week. And the air conditioning at work always gets installed way before the air conditioning gets turned on at my house, so there are many days I don't want to leave work because I know I will go home and sweat. I LOVE AIR CONDITIONING! I just don't always love the "look" of an air conditioner.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo...

The Career Impact Class took a trek to the St. Louis Zoo on Saturday. I went last year with Kari and a couple kids we were babysitting and had a great time, so I was excited to go back. Zoos are fun (even if some people think they are smelly). I did find it a little odd that a group of single people were going together. I have only been to the zoo a) as a small child, b) with a small child, or c) with a group of only girls. So, it was entertaining! Here are some pictures from the trip. It was a gorgeous day and we had great fun.

Yes, we're all pretending to be elephants. If you are a group of "adults" at the zoo, you at least have to act like children!
I was amazed that we got all these people to stand in one place long enough to take a picture. This wasn't quite everyone who went. I think the picture is missing about 5 people and half of Josh's head.
This picture is for my friend Lisa! I talked to her on the way to the zoo and she said that I should get a picture of a shark if there was one. I knew there weren't any sharks at the zoo, but as soon as we walked in I saw this guy hanging from the ceiling. Lisa, he could be Bruce's cousin!
The infamous penguins. We were planning all day to see the penguins, but our trek around the park made the penguin exhibit one of our last stops. By the time we got to the exhibit, we had 40 minutes before we had to be at the meeting place and there was a line that seemed really long to get in to see the penguins. I opted to wait in the line because I knew that 40 degree weather awaited me (and by this time we were really hot). I was the only one who opted to wait in line. Everyone else thought their time would be better spent elsewhere. After reassuring everyone that I could, in fact, handle being alone, they left for other parts of the zoo. The wait was less than five minutes : ). However, because I split from the group, I missed seeing the butterfly house, which was one of the highlights of the trip for most people. Maybe next year...
The giraffes are one of my favorite parts of the zoo. All the other animals stay far away from the people, but the giraffes hang out close to the people. They also fascinate me as one of God's more interesting choices of creation.

This is a very zoomed in picture of the lion sleeping on its back. Last time I was at the zoo, we couldn't find the lion in its habitat, so I was excited to spot this one at a distance.
While others were at the butterfly exhibit (see penguin paragraph above), I took a stroll through the gift shop. I found these books on display and CRACKED UP. Then I stealthily waited while all the other customers walked away so that I could take a picture of the books. Who knew you could help potty train your child by reading books about how zoo animals poop!
On the way home, we played a game where we would name an animal from the zoo and have to come up with a song about that animal. It was rather entertaining. And I hate to admit it, but I ruined my streak of never having to ask to stop to go to the rest room. I had way too much water at dinner because I was trying to rehydrate myself from the day!

I saw it with my own eyes

I was driving down the road today and saw a vehicle with an advertisement that stated the following:

Pimp My Bicycle.

Are you kidding me?!

Sunday, June 1, 2008


Sorry for the boring title and possibly an equally boring post. I don't have the brain energy to come up with something super fun or interesting (and it's not even Monday yet!).

I am reading a fiction book about a girl who has an anonymous blog about her coworker, who happens to find out about the blog but doesn't know she's the one writing it. Here is the first page of the book:

"So what do you think, Jackie?"
What do I think? Funny Joe should ask me. He's just finished reading my blog. He's just quoted me to myself. Or is it myself to me? Do I sound surreal, as if I'm living in parallel universes?
I am!
The blog--my blog--is about Joe. And other topics that make me want to scream. But the clever thing is, I'm anonymous. When I'm blogging.
I'm Jackie, Joe's cubicle mate, when I'm not.
And that's the problem.
Joe is asking Jackie (me) what I think about the Anonymous Blogger (also me). And since I don't want Joe to know the blog is all about me and what I think of him, I can't tell him what I think about me. My brain is starting to short-circuit.

It's an entertaining book. It's actually the second time I've read it, but the first time I did not have a blog of my own. So, I saw it on my shelf the other day and decided that I should read it again from the new perspective of a blog writer. Oh, it's called "The Cubicle Next Door" in case anyone wants to read it.