Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Eve

I'm sorry this post doesn't have any pictures.  I actually didn't take any - I was feeling kind of blah.

Christmas Eve started out a little rocky for me because I have a bit of bronchitis and a cold and wasn't feeling the best.  I just kind of laid around in the morning then headed to Dad's to hang out for a bit before church about 3.  Dad and Janet had everyone over for pizza and snacks, which was nice.  Then we headed to church for the Christmas Eve service.  Except it wasn't the candle lit service I was expecting and love so I was actually quite disappointed.  And they didn't print the words to the carols in the program - they said we are going to sing "from heart" - meaning everyone should know the words.  But we only sing a lot of these songs on Christmas so I don't know the words and the people we invited with us who had never been before definitely didn't so it was weird and I didn't like it.  Oh well.

After church Mom, me, Kristen, Devin and Tyrelle (Devin's dad who my sister is seeing again) headed over to Kristen's house for some dinner and to hang out a bit.  We watched "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town" and let Devin open a few gifts.  It was nice.  I made the cheese balls for the next day when I got home, did some laundry and headed to bed.  All in all a pretty good day!


Saturday, December 25, 2010


On Thursday, in addition to watching Max, I also made 10 dozen cookies with the help of Miss Lindsay Gill.

We made chocolate chip, snickerdoodles and those reindeer cookies you get at the store that I for some reason love.  MAJOR THANKS to Linds for helping me and lending me her kitchen so we could watch movies while we baked since the bulb on my TV bit the dust Wed. night!  THANK YOU!  

(I ordered another bulb online and successfully replaced it myself and my TV now works again.  Thank you also to Samsung for making that process as easy as possible and providing clear directions in the TV manual.)



So usually I'm the friend that parents call when they want a night out, often without their kid(s).  Generally speaking, I'm cool with that because everyone needs a break now and then and I'm fun.  And modest.  :)

But it's a little known fact that if you ask me to watch your kid(s) and I'm available, I will probably say yes.  (Unless your kids are mean or something.)  Then I get to spend evenings with cuties like Max.  

Max is telling me a story that I don't understand 
a word of but it's apparently hilarious.

He was SO good.  When he realized Mom and Dad had left, he paused for a moment then went right back to playing.  He was a happy boy and played and talked all evening.  He also loves Wheel of Fortune (and most game shows I'm told) so I turned it on for him.  He just randomly claps and expects you to do the same.  

"Um, hello Aunt Erin... why aren't you clapping?!"

He also likes music but was not in a dancing mood that evening.  He even played the piano for me for a minute.  He gets super excited when the cat comes into view and says "arf" at the window like the dog.  He has one of those little couch things that turn into a bed and he had a fun time sitting on it, laying down, getting back up and repeating the whole process.  We had a good time.  


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Dinner Date

Pretty adorable, right?

Eli and I had dinner with his parents tonight.  He's getting so big!  Since Mark and Courtney are still recovering from the stomach bug thing that's going around I had dinner with this cutie instead.  Fun!

Also shout out to Mark - thanks for the firewood and I hope you and Courtney are feeling better!


Yoga on Monday Nights is Not for Me

Remember how I said Aimee, Cyndi and I were trying some different classes at Club Fitness?  Last night we went to yoga at the Lemay Ferry location.

Admittedly, it's been awhile since I've taken a yoga class but I do not remember it being as intense as this one was.  I was expecting more relaxing, stretching, doing things-that-feel-good-to-my-muscles kind of stuff.  I was WRONG.  We started the class basically standing on one foot for 10 minutes then switched to the other foot for the next 10 minutes.  Then we had 40 minutes of class left.  Eventually we went to more stretchy stuff and I have never been more pleased to do ab work in my life.  Anyway, I will not be going back to that particular class.

My stay-cation so far has been pretty awesome.  Saturday I made some Pampered Chef deliveries and had P'sghetti's for dinner (YUM.) I also went out to Dave and Buster's then Harrah's with Aimee, Cyndi, Andy and a bunch of Andy's fraternity brothers.  It was a fun time and I enjoyed getting to put some faces with stories I'd heard lol.  Anyway, a bunch of them live like 10 minutes from me so not only were they fun to hang out with but it was a convenient drive.  Score!  lol.

Sunday Neil and Kelly came through town so I got to see them along with Emily, Paul, Mike and Sara.  It was awesome catching up with everyone and hearing what's going on in their lives and what exciting things are coming up.  This is the good stuff, baby!

Monday I did a lot of laying around (until the yoga class) then went grocery shopping which was desperately needed.  I made a list of stuff that needs done around the house (mainly cleaning) and will start chipping away at that today.  I think Thursday is going to be my baking day (read: cookies!) so if you want to come keep me company let me know.  And Thursday I get to watch Mr. Max Ericson so I'm way excited about that too.

And I confirmed today that Lee is arriving the 29th for a short visit and I'm way excited about that too.

I love the holidays.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Insert Catchy Title

This past Friday I joined some friends for a trivia fundraiser for the St. Louis Sabers (the St. Louis women's rugby team.)  We had a blast and did pretty well at trivia (thank you to the Quirins who knew most of the answers) and saw LOTS of people we knew.  Seriously it was a mini-LHS reunion.  Anyway, despite being robbed the point on the color of Dorothy's slippers (we said ruby, they wanted red... I know, right?) we had a great time.  

Sunday I did a Pampered Chef thing out at my friend Jamie's new construction properties but it was a bust because it was SNOWING like crazy here in St. Louis.  I thought I was crazy for going out in it to be honest.  It would have been a good thing I think if not for the weather but oh well.  Monday I was off work (I'm liking this short work week business) and went to a zumba class with Aimee, Cyndi and Lui.  The class was just eh but it was fun to do it with them.  We're trying random classes at Club Fitness to see what the good ones are.  Should be interesting.  Maybe I can shake my annoyingly consistent weight for the last 6 weeks.

I totally forgot to take a picture of the snow.  Oh well.  

3 more days of work then 2 weeks vacation!


Monday, December 6, 2010

Devin turns 7

My nephew Devin turns 7 today.


Crazy how fast kids grow.  Anyway, he had his birthday party with his friends yesterday at Planet Fun in St. Peters.  If you've never been there, it's basically a bunch of tunnels and stuff for kids to crawl through and play and get out their energy.  Good thing for us since we had 8 first grade boys with us!  They had pizza and cake and ran around like crazy people.  It was a blast!

Devin and I

With his cake before we started singing

His cake - yum!

Since today is his actual birthday, the family is going to Chevy's to celebrate tonight for dinner.  His pick - last year it was Red Lobster... kid's going down in taste... lol.  Should be fun though!  

The rest of my weekend was pretty tame - I went to the mall and had dinner with my Mom on Friday, spent the day in my pajamas watching Christmas movies and doing some house stuff on Sat.  And I'm off again today!  I like this 4 day weekend thing... :)


Sunday, November 28, 2010

Gus turns 1 and Burlesque!

Yesterday I went to hang out with my dad for awhile then headed over to Abi's to celebrate her son Augustine's first birthday.  We had yummy chili for dinner and got to hang out!  

Paige Abi and I enjoying the party

Gus wasn't in the best mood at this point, but he did enjoy some birthday cake.

After Gus's party, I headed over to Aimee's to meet up with her, Cyndi, Kristin, Lindsey and Vanessa before we went to see Burlesque! at the theater.  It was both completely terrible and awesome at the same time.  We had a good time watching it and mocking some of the things that were a little far fetched.  But it was fun!  

Today I am doing stuff around the house and tomorrow I have jury duty.  Should be interesting.  


Saturday, November 27, 2010

Black Friday 2010

I'm not usually a crazy early shopper on Black Friday unless there's something really good that I want or need.  I'm just not that dedicated.  But I did go out to the stores to cash in on some good deals out there.  I went to Target and Wal-mart to get a few things and will probably do some more Cyber Monday shopping online.  (Maybe while I'm sitting around for jury duty?)  I was pleased that the stores I went to seemed to be prepared and I didn't have to wait in line too long and things seemed to be signed well for me to find them.  It was a pretty good experience!

Friday night Kyle and Holly were in town so we went to Growler's for dinner.  I actually went early to put our name in and Andy (Aimee's husband) came up and had a beer and appetizers with me while I waited.  There was a bit of a fiasco with the host putting a large group who called in in front of us (they don't take reservations or anything like that or we would have called too) but overall we had a good time hanging out.  After dinner we went over to Storm's house to meet Kyle and Holly's new addition - a french bulldog puppy named Bella.  She's really cute and full of puppy energy.  Storm's dog, Brewsky, wasn't quite sure what to do with her but we were impressed by his tolerance of her.  We did a little reminiscing about when he (Brewsky) was that small (he's a 2 year old Beagle that Storm got when he was 8 weeks old) and how crazy he was too.

We ended the night looking up random You Tube videos on Storm's TV (he has Apple TV and you can do that - its pretty cool) and laughing our asses off.  It was a good time and I was glad to see everyone!


Thanksgiving 2010

My Thanksgiving this year was pretty awesome.  After I did the 5k, I went home and got ready to go over to my Aunt Pat's (Dad's sister) and my Aunt Kathy's (Mom's oldest sister) houses.  It was awesome seeing all the family and catching up.  It even snowed for a minute but didn't stick and was just enough to be pretty without causing road issues or anything.  Awesome.

I think it's some kind of blogger rule that you have to post a list of things you're thankful for for Thanksgiving.  Who am I to buck tradition?

Things I Am Thankful For This Thanksgiving:

-I have the best friends a girl could ask for.  I mean, really - I have a few groups that I hang out with and they're amazing.  I've made some new friends this year and have gotten back in touch with old ones and it's been great.  I feel like I should list you all individually but people don't have that kind of time.  (This is reflected in the fact that I can't bear to cut anyone from my 77 person long Christmas card list lol.  :))

-My family is also pretty great.  Sure we have our drama like everyone else but at the end of the day everyone loves each other and would have your back in a fight.  Unless we're fighting amongst ourselves - then it's every man for himself.  (I would like to give a special shout out to Brad here.  3 years ago when I decided that I wanted to get back involved with that side of the family he really made me immediately feel like I belonged and was welcome.  Not that everyone else didn't do that but he really just erased the missed years.  So special props to him.)
-I am thankful that I have a job still and that I don't dread going to it everyday.  While I may be looking for something that pays a bit better, I've got it better than a lot of people.  Plus my co-workers are pretty cool.  What would I do without Lura to complain to and listen to my nonsense everyday?  She's the best cube neighbor.
-My health - I had a medical scare this past month when I noticed a rather large lump on my neck.  After lots of tests and doctor's visits it now looks like it's nothing to be worried about.  Thanks God!
-I was able to get my shit together and run/walk a 5k without falling over and dying.  This may seem small but I am thankful that I got my butt off the couch and started working out again and was able to achieve this goal. Maybe I would have liked to be a little faster, but I finished and that was what mattered.

Happy Thanksgiving!


Kirkwood/Webster Turkey Trot

On Thanksgiving morning, I got my butt up and went down to the Kirkwood Farmer's market in the cold and misty rain to run a 5k.  Luckily the rain stopped so I decided to go ahead and do this thing.  

 Before it started, we were hanging out and freezing our butts off but excited to get going.
Laura, Kristin, Cyndi, Alisha, Aimee and Me

So we did it.  Aimee, Alisha and I did it together.  The last mile was mostly uphill so that definitely kinda sucked.  We would have run more if it hadn't been for that and therefore finished a little slower than my runs at home have been.  But we still rocked and were very proud of ourselves.  (Randy, can you please talk to these people about logistics?  Cause they didn't even have a Finish banner for me to stand next to take a picture.)

We're done!  Yay!  Go us!

And that was the day I ran/walked a 5k. 


Dinner parties

Monday my sister came over for dinner with Devin and Devin's dad, Tyrelle.  We made this mexican salad kind of thing that is really really good.  Kristen and I had a good time talking and chatting about stuff.  I also gave her her birthday present (it was the Friday before) of wine and a stopper and a re-usable wine bag.  She loved it!  

Tuesday I met Mel and her daughter Olivia at O'Charley's for dinner and catching up.  :)  It was good to see her and I loved hearing what's going on in her life.  I fell so blessed to have such good friends in my life and there are just some I don't get to see enough and Mel is one of them.  Damn our busyness!  

It was also announced to us this week at work that we have a new Director of Development.  As soon as he starts I'll update you as to how that's going.  It might be a rough transition due to some hard feelings but hopefully there will be minimal blood shed.  I of course have Jury Duty on his first day (Monday) so I won't be there to watch it in person, but I'm sure Lura will update me.  


Shopping, turkey and Harry Potter

Last Saturday after I got home from the slumber party Mom and I went shopping for my Christmas presents.  The last few years I have wanted clothes for Christmas so one day we head to the mall and go crazy.  I picked out some really really cute stuff this year and I am quite excited to wear them.  Mom will actually wrap everything though for me to open on Christmas morning so I'll have to wait a whole month.  But it's cool.  I am also quite excited to tell you that I have dropped a pant size.  YES!!

After shopping with Mom I went over to Krystal's to have an early Thanksgiving dinner with her and her family and some of their family friends.  The food was delicious and it was fun to see her since she didn't come in for actual Thanksgiving.  She also invited this guy Mark who we went to high school with (she was better friends with him than I was) who I haven't seen since I don't think so it was fun to catch up.

After dinner I headed to the movie theater to meet up with Mom and Brian (his shopping excursion for Christmas was after mine and then they went to dinner as a mom-son thing) to go see Harry Potter 7 Part 1.  I enjoyed the movie and am excited to see the next one.  Mom didn't quite remember some of the stuff so I had to explain some of it as we went but it was good.  After seeing the movie I decided I needed to re-read the last book to refresh my memory a little.  I knew there was some stuff that they left out but the plot of the story was going the same way so no big deal.  But I wanted to read it again so I remembered.  The second half is action packed so it should be a really cool movie.

The next day (Sunday) we (Mom, Brian, Me, Grandma, Devin, Kristen and Devin's dad) went to the church's Thanksgiving Banquet.  Our old pastor (who baptized me and was there during some very hard times for me) was there and I was thrilled to see him and his wife.  Great weekend!


Slumber parties aren't just for kids you know

Last weekend, Nellie hosted a girls night complete with sleepover.  We went over to her house first for dinner then headed out to see Vanessa's brother's band play.  We decided we were cool so half the car was wearing sunglasses despite the fact that it was dark out.  

 In the car heading to the bar.  Nellie started the sunglasses trend but is not in this picture

 Vanessa and I at the bar.  There is a whole series of these shots but I'll just post the one for you.

 Cyndi and Aimee got in on the self portraits too.

All our fun picture taking and having fun scored us a free pitcher of beer from a nearby admirer.  Nice.

Cyndi, Aimee, Vanessa and me 

Nellie and me 

All of us at the end of the night.  Love it!  

After the bar we went back to Nellie's house where girl's night kind of came to an abrupt halt because her husband ended up coming home instead of staying elsewhere as previously planned.  But instead of going to bed he decided to come sit and hang out with us - so that was the end of girl's night.  We had fun though!!


Friday, November 26, 2010

Crap I'm behind

Stuff I need to tell you about:

-Slumber party adventures
-Early thanksgiving dinner with Krystal
-Shopping with Mom
-New boss
-Dinners with Mel and my sister
-Thanksgiving and the obligatory list of things I'm thankful for
-The 5k I ran this morning (well, I finished anyway)
-the other awesome things that I'm going to do this weekend because it's jam packed
-Anything else I decide might be important between now and then

Geez this list is long.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

Life is good

Life has been good this weekend.

Friday at lunch we ordered Imo's and that seemed to set the tone for the day.  That night I went to see Mike in Annie Get Your Gun.  He did an awesome job as did the whole cast.  I hadn't seen the show before, so it was cool to learn a little bit about Annie Oakley.  Mike had a pretty good turnout - in addition to me, Mark, Courtney, Dan, Anna and Storm came Friday night too.  We had a good time!  After the show I met up with Dan, Mike and Ed Niethe for a couple drinks at Seamus McDaniels (or something close to that.)  We had a good time hanging out and Dan, Mike and I ended the evening with a trip to Uncle Bill's for yummy breakfast food.  Pretty damn good day.

Saturday morning I got to go hang out with Sarah (Cohen) Born.  I have missed her sooooo much!!!  We went to Starbucks and just talked for hours.  I'm so lucky to have a friend that even after many years of not seeing each other I can still sit with her and tell her anything and everything.  She's amazing.  And her girls are just gorgeous too!  I hope it's not so long between visits again and that I'll see her again soon.  Did I mention life is good?

After I got back home from hanging out with Sarah I relaxed a bit then did some cleaning.  I also got my 2011 calendar ready for the new year with birthdays, etc.  I went to bed earlyish because I was really tired and slept late this morning so I guess I was.  And it was one of those sleep-like-the-dead nights where you wake up and the covers haven't moved and your hair still looks decent because you were so still.  Tonight I'm meeting up with Linda to closer her PC show then who knows.  This week is my last full 5-day week of work for the year, and while I'm way excited about that it's going to be sooo busy.  Oh well.


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thank You for Serving

I'm a pretty patriotic girl.  I love my country and think very highly of those who serve it or have served it in the past.  Thank you to all the vets out there who have served or are currently serving our country!!


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Confessions of a Couch Potato Who Plans to Run a 5k

Oh running.  I have such a love-hate relationship with you.  

My Thanksgiving Turkey Trot 5k is coming up (on Thanksgiving obv.)  The first two miles go pretty well.  I could probably even get them a minute faster (each) in the next two weeks if I wanted to.  Then there's mile 3.  Mile 3 is significantly slower and generally a giant mess.  Part of the problem I'm sure is that I have minimal interest in fixing this problem.  But I'm running this damn turkey trot and I should probably consider addressing it.  *sigh*  At least I got to run outside today since the weather was so nice.  So that's a plus, right?  

I ran in one of my ROTC learning community shirts from Mizzou today since it's the Marine Corps's 235th birthday today.  I'm kind of surprised I have made it this long without owning at least one Navy/Army/Marines shirt.  I mean, really, how many guys have I dated that were in the service?  (Don't answer that.)  I might have to work on that.  Anyway, tomorrow is veteran's day so thank you to all the men and women who serve our great country!!


Monday, November 8, 2010

3 day weekends are great

This weekend I was able to head down to Springfield to visit some friends.  I was really excited to spend some time with Paige and to see my friend Carrie again.  I drove down Friday after work and got in kinda late, so we talked for a bit then went to bed.  Saturday morning Paige made french toast for breakfast (yum!) and we decided to head to Carthage, MO to check out the Precious Moments Chapel.  Neither one of us had ever been so we were excited to check it out.  When we got there we were not disappointed!  The weather was gorgeous and we enjoyed looking at all the figurines and paintings and hearing some of the Precious Moments history.  

Paige and I in front of the cute fountain outside the entrance

The beautiful mural inside the chapel of what Sam Butcher pictures the entrance to Heaven will be like.  

Angels getting their halos (another cute mural)

There were lots of paintings in the chapel and several depicted this cottage that was built for Sam Butcher's grandchildren in the middle of the river.  So we took a picture with it.  

Car pic!  Isn't she adorable?  :)

That evening we headed down to Branson to have dinner with my friend Carrie and her daughter Analise and to go look at the Christmas lights (which have been up in Branson since like mid-October.)  It was so good to catch up with Carrie and hang out - and you know I love me some Christmas lights!  It's funny how you appreciate them more when you don't live there.  But sometimes if I was in a bad mood I would drive around and look at the lights to cheer myself up when I lived down there.  Ah, memories.  lol.  

Sunday Paige, Bryan (Paige's boyfriend) and I went to breakfast at Gailey's.  Mmmm sooo gooooood.  

After breakfast Paige and I went for a quick walk while we waited for the furniture stores to open.  Then we went to look at new sofas for Paige.  Fun times on furniture row in Springfield!  Then it was time to head home.  What a great trip!

Sunday night I watched Toy Story 3 (Mom bought it) and my regular Sunday night tv.  Monday I was off so I slept in and got to hang out with Abi since she was in town for a conference.  And I got to see Gus (her almost 1-yr old - how did he get so big?) since he came in to visit Oma and PaPa while Mommy was at the conference.

It was so good to see her!  It was a great weekend - too bad I have to go back to work tomorrow!


Thursday, November 4, 2010

Happy Halloween a little late

Me at work on Friday

Monday, October 25, 2010

Fright(less) Fest and chili

Sunday I slept in and then headed over to Nellie's to hang out and eat some chili.  The food was yummy and the company even better.  Vanessa is now home (she wasn't supposed to be until after Nov. 2 - long story) so we got to hear about her work stuff (ie why she was home) and had a good time playing with Nellie's 2 little girls ages 4 and 2.

After leaving there, I headed to Six Flags for Fright Fest with Cyndi, Aimee and Andy.  I have to say I was a bit disappointed with the Fright portion of the evening.  Stuff was decorated, but there wasn't creepy music playing and hardly anyone was walking around in masks/costumes.  It was remarkably not scary.  But I love roller coasters so all was not lost as that's what we did all evening.  We were going to go on the haunted train ride too, but the line was really long and it was lightening like it was going to pour rain.  When it starts to lightening, they shut down most of the rides so we decided that we would just head home and avoid getting soaked.  It turned out to be a good choice because a few minutes after we left it started raining pretty hard.  Maybe next year we'll get to ride the train.

Today I am off work (yay 4 day weekend!) and am going to be doing some laundry and cleaning the bathroom. I'd be more upset about it if I hadn't been off for the last 3 days having fun.  I could get used to this not working Mondays thing...


Homecoming is best at it's birthplace

Saturday was Homecoming at Mizzou.  In case you're not up on your history, Mizzou is the birthplace of homecoming.  Seriously - wikipedia it.  So we do it big every year but this year there was some extra stuff.  Like ESPN's College Game Day came to Columbia to cover the game and do their show from the Quad.  Where the Tiger fans broke the record for having the most people there - over 18,000.  Then the game in prime time on ABC against the (previously!) #1 ranked Oklahoma.  Who the Tigers haven't beaten since 1998.  Over 71,000 people packed the stadium to see how it would all play out.  (In case you were wondering, that's a damn lot of people at Faurot Field.)

I thought I was going to have to watch this one from home since I didn't get tickets in time.  But then Sam texted me Saturday morning saying they had an extra ticket and did I want to come down?  YES!!!  So I packed up and headed to Columbia.  I met up with Tyler for a late lunch at Bandana's upon my arrival then headed towards the stadium.  Sam, Taylor and Mike did the alumni band thing with Marching Mizzou (alumni can march on the field during pre-game on homecoming.  It's a really cool tradition - the Golden Girls and cheerleaders have started doing it too.)  so I went over to watch them for a little bit and hang out.  Then it was game time.  We were lucky weather-wise - it was pretty nice.  It did rain for a little bit, but not too bad.  And no one left since it was such a good game!

Sam, Taylor, Mike and I at the game

We had a blast cheering for the Tigers.  Then things started to get crazy when the fans realized that we were going to win this game.  Everyone was on their feet and cheering like mad.  It was awesome.  Then we won and the students rushed the field.  

Me with the celebration in the background

Here's some video of Sam and Taylor marching in the parade.

What a great Homecoming!


Monday, October 18, 2010


This past weekend was pretty awesome.  Friday night I went to zumba with Nellie, Aimee, Cyndi and Laura.  Zumba was much better this time than the last time I went - the instructor actually stopped to explain things (maybe because it was a larger class?) and was much clearer on what the moves were.  I was tired at the end!  Afterwards there was drinking in the parking lot and chit-chat.  Loved it.  (PS - if you want to be our friend, you cannot be judgy about drinking in parking lots.  It has been decided.)

Saturday morning I hung out with one of my favorite little cuties and went to the grocery store.  After a nap I met up with Krystal and Liz for a bit then went to dinner with Krystal to catch up.  Then because I'm an old lady I was home and in my jammies by 9:30 p.m.  Sunday I slept in and then headed to Logan's 4th birthday party.  It was Thomas the Tank Engine themed because Logan LOVES Thomas.  The kid has train stuff galore.  My cousin Danny jokes that he'll be the 43 year old man that has the trains in the basement that he piddles with.  :)

He was not in the best mood for this picture, but once we started opening presents he perked up.  I got him the conductor hat and some books - cute, right?  

Today I did a combination of running/walking for a total of 3.1 miles (well, at least it was close since I was going around the neighborhood and the measurements aren't exact.)  It took me about 43 minutes.  Since I walked a decent portion of it I'm pretty pleased with that.  Good deal.  


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Catch up

I was thinking about just pretending the last 2 weeks didn't happen and picking up my blogging with what's new lately, but some cool stuff happened and I didn't want to skip it.  In addition to attending Bricelynn's 3rd birthday  party, I also went to the Blues game on Columbus day (I took off) with Cyndi, Aimee and Andy.  It was a fantastic day of drinking in parking lots, fights and a little bit of hockey.  :)  We had a blast!  I also went to zumba with Nellie for the first time and got to meet her girls.  It was a lot of fun!  I went to Oktoberfest with my mom (which was just ok) and was sick for a bit.  Like actually had a fever one day and a sore throat that lasted almost a week but is now thankfully gone.  Yay!  There was probably some other stuff in there too, but that's about all you missed.

I will do a separate post about this weekend because it was pretty great.


Happy 3rd birthday Bricelynn!

This is my Aunt Pat's great granddaughter Bricelynn.  Whatever that makes her to me.  I go with niece because it's easier and I am not particular.  She is a sweetie.

She's saying "Presents!" in this picture because she had a TON of them.  She's spoiled but we love her.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


I do not understand why people like to run on the sidewalks with the hills when there are perfectly good school tracks and treadmills.

Francis Howell North, you are dead to me right now.  You have had football games on both Monday and Wednesday night this week and since Friday is a typical football night I'm not holding out much hope.  You force me to choose between the damn hills and a gym membership.  (I'm hoping to put of paying for the gym membership for another month - we'll see how fast it gets cold.)  How do you expect me to know exactly how far I ran when I'm just wandering around the subdivision for 30 minutes?  (PS - I can run for 30 minutes.  Crazy.)  Sure I can drive my car around to figure it out, but how annoying is that?

I had planned to move my training to the subdivision eventually with the hills or to at least run on an incline at a gym if it got cold really fast.  But I was hoping to be able to run a little faster on the nice flat track before I did that.  Apparently FHN has other plans for my training.  Sigh.


Monday, September 27, 2010

Weekends rock

I had to work late this past Thursday evening for our John L Trotter Research Program (till like 9:30) but was rewarded by getting sleep late on Friday since I was off!  I pretty much spent my day off laying around.  It was fantastic.  Friday night was game night at (Jen) Lui's house complete with bbq so I made Sam's cheesy potatoes and headed to Ballwin.  It was fun meeting some new folks and hanging out with the ones I already knew.  Great party Lui - I'm glad you're hanging out more with us!

Saturday morning I did more of the sitting on my butt and sleeping in thing.  Amazing.  That evening we planned a surprise dinner and girl's night for Vanessa since her boyfriend just left for Europe for a year over at Lori's.  We had good food, lots of wine and great conversation.  It was a blast!

Sunday I decided it was time to deal with the disaster that was my bedroom.  Translation:  a whole day of laundry.  Blah.  I did some other minor cleaning too, but laundry and getting everything put away was a major task.  I am pleased to let you know that there are currently NO BASKETS OF CLOTHES in my room right now - clean or dirty.  It's a housekeeping miracle at my house.  I even took pictures I was so excited.  We'll see how long it stays this way.  I give it about a week or 2 before the novelty wears off and I have to do another load of laundry that may or may not get put away.  We'll see!


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Run update

Maybe you've noticed that I haven't updated in awhile about how my running is going.  No?  Ok well I haven't because I ended up taking 2 weeks off with Labor Day weekend then Bike and a busy week after.

Anyway, previously things had been going quite well - I could consistently run for 25 minutes and was working on getting faster and that seemed to be working out.  Then the break. It was rough coming back.  It took me a few workouts to work back up to my previous endurance levels, etc.  I can now run/jog again for 28 minutes (the workouts for week 8) and can run 2 full miles.  The good news is that I'm back to my previous consistent mile times - the bad news is that I'm still pretty slow.  I'd be more upset about it except that prior to starting this program I could barely run at all (remember week 1 when I was dying after running for a minute?) so I feel like I've come a long way.  And since I don't plan to stop running after next week (the end of the C25K program) I figure I'll get faster eventually.  I'm not breathing really hard at the end of my runs so I know I can go faster, I just have to push a little harder and have the confidence that I won't die if I do.  There's definitely still a mental factor.  I'll figure it out I'm sure!


Oh well

Someday maybe I won't end up with a weekend full of activities right after an event.  Maybe.  But I did make up for some sleep I missed, so all was not lost.

Friday after a long day of physical labor cleaning out our warehouse, I headed over to Syberg's for Paula's official going away party.  I am still sad to see her go but it's awesome for her and I wish her the best.

I enjoyed hanging out with my co-workers and getting to hear about Paula's first week at Express Scripts (her new employer.)  Changes are coming to our department at work but it was fun to celebrate the fun we had and moving forward.  Several shots were taken and drinks and fun were had.  Good times.

Saturday I went to lunch with my mom and sister and then to Devin's soccer game.  I don't know when the last time was that you watched a bunch of 6-7 year olds play soccer but it was hilarious.  I found myself cracking up at some of the silly things they did since they're still learning the game and are, you know, six.  Devin is the kid on the right standing off by himself.  My mom was constantly telling him to "get up there!" Ha. 

After Devin's game I headed over to the Ericson's to spend the afternoon with Sam which turned into the whole evening.  I loved catching up with her and hanging out.  Max was in a great mood (until right before bed time of course) and was fun to watch and play with.  Once he decides that I'm not scary and am not going to steal him he warms right up and can be so affectionate.  I love baby Max kisses!  He's getting so big these days too and I got to witness him gain a new word - keys.  I offered him my keys to keep him happy ("Want my keys?") and his response was "Keys!" Not to be confused with "Please" which he also says (peez) when he wants something which I think is adorable.  It's cool to see him learning.  Anyway, we went to dinner at O'Charley's with Sam's parents and then all went back to her house and played spades.  Fantastic Saturday afternoon/evening.  

Sunday Cyndi had tickets to the Cardinal's game from her work and invited me and 2 other friends to join her.  We had fancy seats in the Red Bird Club so they were cushioned and covered (though it didn't rain but they were dry when we got there as it had rained earlier.)  Cardinals won and we had a great time.  

After the game I headed home for laundry and hanging out at home.  Pretty good weekend if I do say so myself!


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Bike MS Bubble

3,400+ bikes.  65 team tents.  Lots and lots of spandex.  Gators.  Start/finish banners that have grommets that never seem to line up.  These are the things that signify Bike MS to me.   

In case you aren't aware, I work for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.  Every year we have this little fundraiser in September called Bike MS that raises half of our revenue for the year.  So on Thursday I packed up my crap and headed to Columbia for a 5 day stay in accomodations that leave much to be desired.  (To give you an idea, the room doors to our 'hotel' are on the outside of the building.  Use your imagination.)  But we're here and getting things ready for the ride that promises to be the biggest and best yet. 

Generally speaking, I think the ride went pretty well.  I could hash out the details for you, but that would not be very exciting for you.  I will, however, say that the team tent village (which is my responsibility) was awesome.

We had a whole field of tents with cyclists drinking and having a blast.  It's pretty cool.  Anyway, it's a really long couple of days of getting up really early (think 4am) and going to bed late.  Because of this, you end up in what I like to call the Bike MS Bubble.  In the bubble, anything and everything relates to Bike.  The rest of the world stops.  Bike is it.  So it's kind of weird to come back and discover that the rest of the world kept going while I was gone.  That everyone's life didn't get put on hold and narrow to the Boone County Fairgrounds and thousands of bicycles. 

Obvioulsy I know the rest of the world kept going but that doesn't make it less weird to try to get back into it.  It's like the bubble has burst and I have to catch up on the past week that was spent in a haze of spandex and early mornings.  But I'm adjusting.  Now that I've slept off some of the exhaustion, I'm getting back into the swing of things.  Like I cleaned before I left, but it's been a week now and I have to do it again.  Awesome.  But it's good because another Bike ride is behind me.  Whew. 

There was a very sad moment that came with the end of Bike for me though.  My beloved director Paula's last day was the Monday after the ride.  While I know it was a good move for her, etc, I'm still sad to see her go because she's a rock star.  In true Development style, we celebrated the end of Bike with her in Columbia Sunday night in style - dinner at Flat Branch and lots (and lots) of drinking for all.  Lura, my friend and co-worker, took some video during our binge that I hope never sees the light of the internet but rest assured we had an absolute blast. 

If you were at the fairgrounds with me this past weekend, I hope you had a blast and that you didn't talk to me late Sunday afternoon when I got a little bit bitchy.  :)  Good times, right? 

Hopefully this weekend will include some time to relax and see my friends.  It feels like labor day was forever ago so I hope to get some good friend-time in this weekend!  (Aimee, Cyndi, Sam - I'm looking at you!)

I think that's it for now.  :)


Monday, September 6, 2010

Family fun

Sunday I spent the day hanging out with family (after I slept in of course!)  I headed out to my cousin's son Ben and his wife Kristal's house for their son Parker's 7th birthday party.  

A little back story:  My dad's sister, Pat, is 18 years older than him so my cousins are actually my dad's age (56.)  Their children are who I think of as my cousins.  For the sake of simplicity, I consider their children like nieces and nephews instead of whatever my aunt's great-grandchildren would be.  To further complicate matters, my dad and my cousin Pam got into it about 20 years or so ago and have not really spoken since and therefore I have barely seen and barely know that side of the family.  About 3 years ago, when my Nana turned 90, I decided that this not seeing anyone on Dad's side of the family business was stupid and started making an effort to see people.  Dad and my brother and sister see them at holidays now at least but I have made an effort see my cousins more often.  So I am always excited to be invited to simple things like birthday parties.  :)  Now you're all caught up.

I had a blast hanging out with the family - I got over there about 2:30 and didn't leave until about 7 so you know it was good.  It's cool because with the older cousins we fall into an easy companionship so easily and I love it.  And Ben and Brad's kids are pretty freaking cute.  Parker was super excited to get his big present from Ben and Kristal - a Nintendo DS!

His face totally lit up when he opened it.  I loved watching it.  I got him some books which he also seemed excited about.  While Parker was opening presents, I entertained Bricelynn (Brad and Amanda's almost 3 year old daughter.)  She is a sweetie.  

And she's a girl after my own heart who loved seeing herself in the screen of my phone (the camera has an awesome function where you can see yourself) and I helped her take some self portraits.  She laughed the entire time.  

Love her.  Then we had cake.  

And I enjoyed hanging out with the family - like my Aunt Pat.

Logan and Parker (brothers) playing :)

After the party I stopped by my dad's house and went for ice cream with him and Janet (his lady friend.)  I hadn't seen him in awhile so it was good to catch up.  

Another fun day!


Millstadt Homecoming

Andy (Aimee's husband) is from Millstadt, IL.  He's been telling me pretty much since I met him that they have this thing called homecoming there and that it's the best weekend of binge drinking ever.  Since I am a Mizzou alumni, I know a thing or two about homecoming.  In case you were unaware, the University of Missouri created homecoming.  We started the whole damn thing when Chester Brewer, Athletic Director at MU, invited all the alumni to "come home" for the Mizzou-Kansas football game in 1911.  There was a parade and spirit rally and 10,000 fans packed the stadium that day and the tradition of homecoming was born.  Seriously - wikipedia it.  

So I decided that this year I would go check it out.  It was advertised as having a parade and drinking in the street so I figured this would be a party I would enjoy.  They threw beads during the parade.  Andy was thrilled that with his beads he now matched his favorite beer - Stag.  

Nice, right?  Overall it was a fun evening.  I didn't quite get the full experience since I had to drive back home that night - but I got the idea. :)  It was also fun to meet some of the people that I've heard a lot about but hadn't yet met.  So there was a lot of internal "ooohhhh yeah, you're the one who..."  lol.  Good times!


Go Tigers!

Saturday I went to the Mizzou-Illinios game in St. Louis at the dome.  We of course had to tailgate first though!  It was a ton of fun and I loved getting together with everyone.  Plus the weather was absolutely perfect for it!  Check out the pictures.  AND the Tigers won so it was even better!!!!

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Friday, September 3, 2010

a little catch up

I promised you a post about what's going on in my life besides running and then completely forgot about it.  Oops.  Anyway, last weekend was pretty tame.  I had the pleasure of going to Hurricane Harbor on Sunday afternoon with Aimee, Cyndi and Lui and we had a great time.  The weather was perfect for it (mid to upper 80s) and we enjoyed the slides, lazy river and laying in the sun.  Perfect.  At work we're getting ready for Bike MS (which is next weekend) so things are kind of crazy there.  Thank goodness it's almost over!  Saturday after I went for a run I called up Phil to see if he wanted to go grab a beer somewhere close by.  It's so convenient to have him just down the street - otherwise I would have had to drive south to meet up with someone.  We went to a bar near my house that was doing karyoke.  We had a blast!

Monday was Phil's birthday and we went out to the Pink Galleon in Creve Coeur.  If you've never been there, it used to be a strip club and when it was turned into a bar they didn't put a whole lot of effort into making it not look like a strip club anymore.  Exhibit 1:  a "tiki man" on a lighted stage in 2 different places in the bar around a central stage which was at one time just a pole.  Hehe.  I had a blast hanging out and playing pool.  It's been awhile since I've been to a bar that has pool and I forgot how much fun it is.  And it was free at PG that night so bonus.  (PS - I think I've seen Phil Gill more in the last 2 weeks than I have in years!  I'm going to miss him when he's gone in a few days!)

I am still attending trivia most Thursdays and could probably post most weeks about funny things that happen there but they would probably only be funny to me.  But this one you'll enjoy.  Some of you may be familiar with a shirt I own that says "Beer cheaper than school."  BEER is in (large) green letters right across my boobs and the rest is below it.  It is Andy's (Aimee's husband) favorite shirt of mine, which is saying something as I own a plethora of low cut shirts as well.  Anyway, I wore it to trivia recently (since trivia is at a bar called Tower Pub it's appropriate) and Andy has started stating his belief that I should wear it every week.  This cracks me up because at some point in the 2+ hours that we're there, he will ask me "What, no beer shirt?  WHY?  It's the perfect shirt!"  Maybe I should start wearing more low cut shirts to trivia?  Hm.  Luckily his wife does not seem to mind!  


Saturday, August 28, 2010

Interesting run revelation

I know.  You may be thinking 2 running posts in a row?  Is nothing else happening in your life?  Well, some stuff is happening but I decided to wait till the weekend is over to update on the rest of my activities.  So you'll have to settle for a 5k training update.

I finished week 6 of the C25k program today - and today's workout marks the end of the intervals.  From here on out I will just be running the entire time - eek!  Except I say "eek" but I can totally do it.  Which is weird in an of itself.  Today I jogged for 25 minutes with just a quick stop to get a drink.  And I had a revelation.  I run slower when I have to run the whole time.  Like a lot slower.

I think it's mostly in my head though - because today when the app told me my 25 minutes was up I could have kept going.  (Usually I'm counting down the last 30 seconds till I can stop.)  I think I'm afraid to push myself like I do in the intervals because I'm still a little concerned that I won't be able to make it the entire time if I do and there's not a scheduled break coming in the event that I'm dying.  It's a hard transition in my head to be confident in my ability to run for that long even though I can physically do it.  Today is proof - I wasn't even winded at the end since I wasn't going very fast.  But my brain still doesn't quite know that.  I'm going to have to get over it and  run faster though because as I said before, the intervals are no more.  And really if I had to walk a minute it wouldn't be the end of the world.  I'm strangely obedient to the man in the app who tells me when to run/walk - if he doesn't tell me to walk I don't.  I feel like I'm cheating if I don't listen to him.  Where is he when I need to be doing other things?  Maybe I need a house cleaning app too.  :)  (You must clean for 10 minutes before a 3 minute break then 10 more minutes.  I could make a fortune.)

Anyway, I'm hoping now that I'm aware of this mental block that I can overcome it.  Generally, I like running by myself because I don't have to worry about someone else's pace - but I wonder if maybe I need someone who runs a liiitle bit faster than me to help me set my pace.  Hm - any takers?


Monday, August 23, 2010

Week 6 has started

I started week 6 of the C25K program tonight.  Do you know what that means?  It means I conquered the 20 MINUTE run at the end of week 5 with no problem.  Sweet!

I'm to the point now where the program starts getting me to go longer than 20 minutes.  So today I did this:

Brisk five-minute warmup walk, then:

  • Jog 5 minutes
  • Walk 3 minutes
  • Jog 8 minutes
  • Walk 3 minutes
  • Jog 5 minutes
5 minute cool down

Today I also did a little experiment.  Since at this point I can jog without huffing and puffing at the end, today I decided to actually run (not jog) the first 5 minutes.  I did it but man did it make the rest of the workout harder.  It still annoys me that it's my legs that tend to cause the majority of my issues when I run.  My calves get tight (despite the fact that I stretch) and they just hurt by the end.  Not enough that I have to stop but enough to make me uncomfortable.  I'm wondering if different shoes would help.  Anyway, it's going fine.  I was half a lap short (1/8 mile) of going 2 full miles in the 24 minutes like I wanted, but oh well.  If I was at the pace of the program I would be running 2 1/4 miles in 25 minutes by the end of this week and 2.5 miles in 25 minutes by the end of next week.  Probably not going to happen in that time frame but I would like to be able to go at least 2 miles which I think is attainable this week.  

Shout out to my friend Holly who started the program this week!  (Who knew I would become a poster child for running?)


Reunions are fun

Sunday was a day of mini-reunions.  First I went to brunch because my dear friend Lindsey was in town for the weekend - you may remember her as the hot brunette from my trip to Chicago in June.

I met up with Lindsey, Cyndi, Aimee, Andy and Nick at Soulard Coffee Garden.  It was a yummy brunch and even better company.  I really enjoyed catching up with Linds and just chatting with everyone.  I should go to brunch more often.

From brunch I headed to O'fallon for a little Laws Hall/Mizzou reunion at Mel and Greg's house.  It was so fun to see everyone!  We hung out and told stories about the "old days" and had a lovely afternoon.  In attendance were Dan, Paul, Emily, Tyler, Missy, Dave, Stacy, Nate, Mel, KC, Greg, Olivia and I.  I managed to take 1 picture at the party.  Better than nothing right?  Mel took some though so all is not lost.

Greg cooked some awesome pork steaks and really all the food was delicious.  And I got a hug from Olivia before I left so that was icing on the cake.  (She's Mel and Greg's 2 year old so I only get hugs sometimes - but I can usually at least score a high five.)

Fun Sunday!


Eli visits

After sleeping late on Saturday morning (see previous post if you need an explanation), I headed over to the Bembower's to drop off a Pampered Chef item they'd bought recently.  Of course and added bonus to this little errand was of course the welcoming party...

Eli is now almost 5 months old and can sit up by himself!  Isn't he adorable?  He's a very smiley boy and was totally amused that he could see himself as I took this picture (my phone has a self portrait type function - I love it!)  We played on the floor for almost an hour while I chatted with Dan and Anna.  They enjoyed not having to entertain him.  Dan did offer to take some pictures for me though.  (Ignore my hair - I just let it dry however that day and it looks like it!)

That's all.  Just cute baby pictures.