November 2, 2010

Done Blogging

Hello Followers,
I know there aren't many of you who check this regularly anymore and I don't blame you since I haven't been updating it regularly in almost a year. It was a great tool when I first moved to IL to share stories and photos from my time here while I got adjusted to life on the other side of the lake, but its no longer handy or easy to update so I'm letting it go.
Most of my photos go up on Facebook and my stories go out through emails but if you feel cut off from me leave me a comment and we'll figure out how to get you back in the loop.

June 8, 2010

World Cup 2010 - GOOOOOAAALL!

I am a soccer fair-weather fan. I willingly admit it. But my excitement for the FIFA World Cup that starts this Friday is building. I have a schedule of the games and am planning to watch constant soccer in the next few weeks.
The ever hilarious and never completely serious ESPN has a great commercial with US team player Landon Donovan.

Friday Fun - Museum of Science and Industry

The first official Friday Fun Adventure on an actual Friday was a smashing success. A train ride in to Hyde Park brought us to the Museum of Science and Industry where we explored the new exhibit "Science Storms." So cool. The rest of the museum was awesome too. Everything there is on such a big scale that I feel like a little kid again.

The Science Storms Exhibit
A tornado in the exhibit. It was really cool to watch, and Shonna was disappointed that she couldn't stand inside it. Such a weather nut!
The huge Tesla coil attached to the ceiling. It was super loud when they turned it on, but was awesome to watch the lightning shock the metal.
They had little booths where you could stand in really strong winds. We purposefully messed up our hair for the rest of the day, but it was really fun.
Shonna over-estimated the comfort of her shoes so we found her these Smart Chick socks in the gift shop.
Outside the museum is the R2D2 mailbox.
"Help me Obi-Wan Kenobi, you're my only hope."
In the U-505 exhibit they have a full submarine. Awesome! I read the book Playing with the Enemy by Gary W. Moore about the US Navy baseball team during WWII that was assigned to guard the German prisoners from this very sub, and taught them how to play baseball. It's like touching history. So cool.
And of course, you have to visit the baby chicks. They run around their little habitat responding to the people outside the glass that are waving at them. Really cute. It's hard not to "awwww."
After walking around Hyde Park a bit we settled on Chant, a fun and funky Asian cuisine restaurant for dinner.
Then back to Shonna's for a viewing of Star Trek. I loved that movie in the theater and it was just as good on the small screen. Dead-on re-creation and newly creative at the same time. Plus, we watched the gag reel and I couldn't stop laughing.
Here's to more successful adventure!

June 2, 2010


I know that we're actually closer to Father's Day than we are Mother's Day, but I wanted to share this photo of my mom at lunch on Mother's Day. She ordered a Chipati from Pizza House in East Lansing and it was the most entertaining looking meal I'd seen in a long time. It's like a cross between a huge cartoon oyster and a mini-UFO.
By the way, isn't my mom gorgeous!? If I look as pretty as her in the future I'll be so lucky.

June 1, 2010

Friday Fun Adventures! - Take One

The Summer of Friday Fun is off to a great start, even if we haven't yet done anything on a Friday. Shonna and I celebrated Memorial Day with a faux BBQ and a mini-marathon of the first season of Doctor Who.
Good Times.
Here are some photos of our indoor George Forman faux BBQ.
Proper BBQ food: hotdogs, chips, corn on the cob and pop. mmm.

We discovered that if you don't have those cool handles to put in the end of the corn, you need to wait for it to cool a bit before trying to pick it up. Just a tip.

This is me proving that you can't eat corn with any grace or manners. Yum.

May 26, 2010

Friday Fun Adventures!

This summer I have been blessed to be able to work a modified schedule. Basically I work longer on Monday through Thursday and then work a half day on Friday. So awesome! I'm telling you, it makes it feel like every weekend is a three day weekend. Lovely!
The only drawback is that when I don't have something planned to do within a large block of free time I have the tendency to do nothing. I don't want to sit on my butt watching daytime television every Friday afternoon this summer so I needed a plan.
In comes my buddy Shonna who is a teacher and has the summer off. She and I got to talking and decided that we needed to devote our Fridays to going out (or staying in) and doing something fun. We're calling them Friday Fun Adventures, or something like that, we haven't quite solidified the title yet. And really, what's in a name? They're going to be fun no matter what we call them.

Here's my brainstorm list so far:
* Watch Season One (or more) of Doctor Who
* Visit Used (and New) Bookstores in Chicago
* Hancock Observatory / Willis Tower Skydeck - somewhere high with a view
* Taste of Chicago
* Museum of Contemporary Art
* Wicker Park / Bucktown Shopping
* Science Storms at the Museum of Science and Industry
* LOTR Marathon
* Indoor Game Day
* Lincoln Park Zoo
If we do half of this list it will be an amazing summer.
A couple of things:
1) If you know of a fun Chicago thing (restaurant, art gallery, store, whatever) that you recommend we add to the list, let me know.
2) If you see something on this list that you would like to do and want to come to Chicagoland to hang out with me and participate in a Friday Fun Adventure Day, please let me know. The more the merrier.

"In winter I get up at night
And dress by yellow candle-light.
In summer, quite the other way,
I have to go to bed by day."
- Robert Louis Stevenson

Here's to longer days and Funner Fridays!!

May 25, 2010

The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott

by Kelly O'Connor McNees
2010, Penguin Group (USA)
This book is a mix of fact and fiction centered around a summer during the young life of Louisa May Alcott, the well-known author of Little Women. For one summer the Alcott family lived in Walpole, New Hampshire and the author, Kelly O'Connor McNees, creates a fictional romance for Louisa during that summer. She weaves true facts about the family; their poverty, their personalities and their family dynamics with fictional friends, lovers and events. It was great fun to read. It was like being able to see into the past and get to know these people that lived long ago, but in a much more exciting way than a dry textbook or biography. I don't know enough about Ms. Alcott's real life to know what's true and fact, but I don't really care. I feel very satisfied thinking of the people as they were in this book.

I'm not usually a fan of historical fiction, but I picked this book up because it was written by someone I grew up with. As a librarian I spend my days around books and am constantly looking at new titles and authors old and new, so I was totally psyched to see Kelly's name on a book at our library. It's a wonderful mix of my young life and my current passion. And Kelly definitely has talent. I may not have picked up the book if I didn't know the author, but I'm really glad I did. It was a well written book and I'm looking forward to reading more by her in the future.