It's official!

It's official!
David Stubbs Photography

Monday, November 29, 2010

Holiday Realizations

When I went to Mike's family's home in Canton, Ohio this Thanksgiving, I had a few realizations.  First of all, I can no longer eat whatever I want over the holidays, because at 32, my metabolism is now working at a snail's pace, while my butt is growing at the speed of a cheetah's run.  It's?  Depressing.

Secondly, when I held our newest nephew, I kinda liked the way he smelled and felt in my arms, suddenly making me afraid I might be closer to wanting children than I thought.  Uh-oh.

Third, shopping on Black Friday sucks in small towns just like it sucks in big cities.  Crowds just suck.

Finally, I'm beginning to get blog followers.  Holla!  When I talked to two different friends of my mother-in-law's, they knew what was going on in our lives because they read this blog.  I had no idea!  How cool is that?

They both said (and a girlfriend also reminded me today), that I haven't followed up and told you about my new job like I promised!  I suppose I've been a little hesitant following the Conference Producer position debacle of January 2010.  Remember that?  I took a job doing what I thought was research, but it turned out to be more cold call sales, and I realized getting called a bi*** and getting hung up on does not put me in my happy place.  But when I got the job, I was so excited so I told everyone, and then?  I only lasted 9 days.

So since I've been working at my new job for about two months, I feel like it's okay to share.  I got a job through a mutual friend as a Freelance Publicist for a P.R. company.  I work from home which totally rocks, and my boss may be about the coolest person ever.  I get to write, which I love, and I'm finally earning a paycheck which helps the ol' ego.

To Mary Ann, Suzette, and anyone else who may be reading this blog, thank you!  (Now please don't tell Mike about the whole baby-smelling, may be ready for kids part.  I'm sure the food coma I was in left me temporarily insane.)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

I was wrong...

Dear Glee,

Wow, I had no idea how great you are!  I tried to not like you, but I'm failing miserably.  I thought just because millions of people talk about and rave about you, I wasn't going to jump on the band wagon.  Now I'm running after you, trying to hop on that beautifully executed, well-written band wagon.  I thought the fact that I'm tone deaf and a little bitter over being criticized in high school choir for having a "flat" voice, I thought I couldn't appreciate you.  Now I realize even the musically handicapped can appreciate your brilliance.  Please keep 'em coming, because I look forward to you each week.


What do Glee, Facebook and Twitter all have in common?  When all three came out, I laughed at them, called them ridiculous and said they'd never last.

I guess I was wrong.

Mike and I had a good laugh about this last night after I was raving about the Glee episode I just watched with my mother-in-law.
Mike said, "Didn't you hate that show?"
"What changed your mind?" he asked.
"Ugh, I watched it."
Laughing he said, "Didn't you hate Facebook too before you joined?"
"Yes.  I thought it sounded ridiculious.  I mean who needs to know I ate Apple Jacks for breakfast or that I worked out that morning?"
"And now?" he asked.
"I can't wait to update everyone on my awesome breakfast choices and my great pilates workout!"
"And Twitter?"
"I thought it was dumb when it was invented."
"I just love finding out what Kim Kardashian is up to!"

The point is--I've decided my New Year's resolution for 2011 is to be more open minded.  Just because I don't understand something, or think it might be silly, it may be something that I end up loving and can't live without.

I think we should all be the same way.  Turn your nose up to Sushi?  Just try it.  Think Justin Bieber's hair is ridiculous?  Perhaps it has awesome forehead warming abilities.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Ever been a hot mess?

I'm a hot mess today.  It's the kind of day where I'm so scatter-brained, if I were a mother, I'd probably forget my kids in the car or at gymnastics practice.

It started at the gym this morning.  I had been there for 30 minutes running when I decided I'd better do some leg exercises in preparation for getting my turkey on this week.  When I climbed on the machine, I looked down and noticed my workout pants looked a little different.  Yep, that's because they were on inside out.  My tags and pockets were hanging out (and the pockets are lined with white and the pants are brown, so it was SO obvious.)  I laughed at the fact that I was just noticing this at the end of my workout.

I cleaned up and got ready to head into the city for work.  I hopped on the L train and score!  An empty seat, so I sat down.  We took off and headed to the next stop.  As we were slowing down nearing it, the recorded voice said, "This stop, North & Clybourn."

What??  That's NORTH of my apartment, and I'm trying to go SOUTH into the city.  Shoot, I just got on the wrong train.

Sheesh.  Luckily I found out you can get off at one stop and immediately turn around and go the opposite direction without having to pay again.  Thank goodness!

I posted my hot messiness on Facebook, and asked friends to confess the crazy things they've done when they were tired.  Here are some of their stories....

* One friend accidentally used black eyeliner on her eyebrows instead of her eyes.  Hello Gothic style! Another put mascara on only one eye, and when she looked in the rear view mirror, couldn't figure out why she looked so strange.

* Another grabbed the outdated milk carton instead of the fresh one.  He put it on his cereal and took a bite of rotten grossness!

* Another friend of mine one-upped my gym-pants story.  She forgot to wear pants at the gym all together!

* One friend can totally relate to me.  She realized while running errands she had her V-neck sweater on backwards, totally channeling the 90's pop group Kris Kross.

*  My all time favorite?  One friend says she was so tired, she went to the bathroom and dropped her drawers.  Only she forgot to pull down her undies.  Yep, she peed right through them.  Her husband won't let her live it down.

Thanks for the stories everyone!

P.S. We're heading to Ohio tomorrow to spend time with Mike's family, so I'll probably be off-line for a couple days.  HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYBODY!

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Name Game: A Losing Battle

Okay, okay, I know I just need to do it.  I need to "officially" change my last name, because this "tweener" stage is annoying me.

Today I went to my bank to deposit a check (Yes, deposit, not cash).  It's the same bank I've been going to for years, only a different branch in our new 'hood.  The check was made out to "Jeannie Crofts" and not "Jeannie Evanchan."

The teller says, "Oh, did you change your name?"

Me: "Yep, I got married a few months ago."

Teller: "Congrats.  But I can't deposit this check."

Me: "Well, the other branch changed my name a couple of months ago after I showed them my wedding license, and they've been depositing my "Crofts" checks since then, no problem."

Teller hesitantly: "Okay, well I guess I could try and e-mail that branch to see if they still have the license on file." (Me thinking: "Is e-mail really the quickest way to get this resolved?")  The teller then glanced at the line forming behind me, clearly not wanting to do this.

Teller continues: "Because if I try and deposit it under your maiden name, it will bounce, then any money you spend will be overdrawn, then you'll have to pay fees and you'll probably die a slow painful death. (Okay, I added the last part.)

Long story short, the teller wouldn't budge even after I showed him my ID that still says "Crofts" and reminded him that the other branch happily deposited my check a couple of weeks ago.

The moral of this story: It appears this name change/wedding license isn't an official policy, I just happened to get the cranky guy on a Monday who's girlfriend cheated on him this weekend and now he's in a bad mood.


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Maybe the recession is a good thing

The other day, I was talking with a girlfriend of mine about how cocky we were in our 20's work-wise.  She's in PR, and said by 26, she thought she should be one of the vice president's of her company, and she pretty much let everyone know that.  When she didn't get promoted, she quit.  After that, things were a little rocky with a brief unemployment stint, but luckily now she's employed and humbly laughs about those days.

Being on a billboard?  I thought I was SO cool
I was the same way at 25, while working as a reporter in Fort Myers.  I was convinced that I should be one of the main anchors, and I cussed my bosses for not agreeing.  I also thought I should be making WAY more money than I was.  During contract negotiations, I told my news director what I thought I should be making.  He laughed and said, "Well then you'd be the highest paid reporter at this station."  My response?  "So?"  I ended up only getting about a dollar more per hour.

For the rest of my 20's, the cockiness continued.  I thought I worked harder than anyone else, always drew the short straw, and never made enough money.

Then the recession hit.

At 30, I lost my TV job and with it, all cockiness.  I suddenly realized no job is secure, and for every job I applied for, there were 400 other equally qualified people willing to work just as hard, if not harder, than me.  I realized I could no longer be cocky, or believe that I should be making more money.

Now, I am super thankful to have a job.  (Yes, you heard me right.  I have a job!  Details coming later.)  I work harder than I ever did in my 20's, but I don't complain about it.  I'm super happy with my salary, and am willing to do just about anything my boss asks of me. (Barring anything icky or illegal.)

So to you recession:  Yes, you stink, but I think you've made many of us better people.  We appreciate what we have, and don't take things for granted.  (So since we've learned our lessons, you can go away now.)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Why do people cut?

Mike and I went to a great concert last night!  Have you heard of Donavon Frankenreiter?  He has some great songs like "Life, Love and Laughter," and "Beautiful Day."  His amazing voice sounds a lot like Jack Johnson, in fact the two are buds and fellow surfers who perform together.

Last night, Donavon (who has a sweet 'stache) performed with one of my favs, John Oates from the 80's band "Hall & Oates" (who also used to have an equally sweet 'stache.)  It was so great!  I shimmied and shook to each song.

Here's what I notice about every concert we go to without assigned end up next to (or worse yet, behind!) a total douche.

It wasn't very crowded last night, so we ended up getting a really great spot towards the front.  We had about 15 minutes to wait.  Tick, tock, tick, tock.  I'm watching every person who comes in or near me like I watch a tennis match, with my head bobbing back and forth.  T minus 1 minute to the show, and my view is suddenly blocked when this guy walks in (see picture.)  He's about 6'3", 300 pounds, and well, there's no other way to say it-- a very large man.  He at least said "excuse me" before cutting and stationing himself right smack dab in front of me.

The worst part?

He didn't even seem to enjoy himself.  He just stood there like a lump, never smiling, drinking, or even bothering to take off his coat.  Mike theorized he is a music critic for a newspaper, and had to come the concert.

Why do people think they are more important than anyone else and can cut in front of them?  Just remember...karma.  You cut in front of me, I track you down and hit you with my car.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Ever black out at the vet's office?

If there was any doubt that I'm not ready to have children yet, an incident today certainly proves that to be true.

I took my 4-legged son Buckeye to the vet for his annual exam.  Everything was going fine, and then the doctor pulled out a needle to draw his blood.  I started thinking, "You're going to do this in front of me??"  Oh god.  I started feeling queasy, so I took off my winter coat and hat.  Still felt sick as I saw the needle going in, so I sat down.  Then the all-to-familiar feeling of starting to black out before I pass out hit me like a ton of bricks.  I told the vet and the vet tech, "I think I'm going to pass out."  Knowing my likely fate of waking up on the concrete floor, I ran out of the room and outside, hoping the 32-degree air hitting my face would make everything better.

I'm sure Buckeye was like, "Um, excuse me, Mom?  Where are you going?  These men are Ow!  Sticking me with sharp, Ow!"

Luckily I maintained consciousness, and the nice vet brought me some water, in a Dixie cup, of course.  After a couple of minutes I felt better, and walked back into the office with everyone's eyes on me.

When I went back into the room, the vet said, "Don't worry, that happens quite a bit because it's a small room and you're witnessing a medical procedure."  True, but for most people it probably happens when their blood is being drawn, not their Chihuahua's.

How embarrassing.

Side note: Today's exam was $175, and the vet recommends a $450 dollar teeth cleaning, so I couldn't even afford kids if I wanted them.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Ode to Zits

Dear Zits,

I've asked you before, but you never listen.  Please go away.  You've been a sore spot (pun intended) for the past 17 years, and I'm tired of you.  You ruined countless school dances, Mike's 10-year high school reunion, many live shots on TV and ordinary days that I would have looked so much better without you, you big red bump.

It seems like a cruel joke that you can accompany newly formed lines and age spots on my face.  It seems like one's presence should equal the other's departure.

I'm tired of trying to cover you and pretending you're not there.  I hate when I catch someone looking at you instead of at me.

Zits, I'm 32 1/2, so it's time you go away.  I know we've had a long history together, but it's time to say goodbye.

So long,

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Finally Prince William!

AP Photo
One of today's big headlines is the announcement of Prince William and Kate Middleton's engagement.  Sigh.  I always had a huge crush on Prince William.  Well, that was before he started balding and looking more and more like Prince Charles.  Now I've got my eye of Prince Harry, who fittingly, has a full head of hair.

Part of the reason this story got so much press is because this is the most anticipated royal engagement ever.  Kate and Prince William have known each other for 8 years.  8!  In today's world, we're more accustomed to couples like Khloe Kardashian and Lamar Odom who knew each other for one month before tying the knot.  I can totally relate to Kate's situation considering Mike and I waited 6 1/2 years to walk down the aisle.

Here's the a woman after that much time, you're constantly wondering when it will happen.  Pretty soon, you become so ridiculous about it, you hope even a trip to 7-11 to get slurpees will end with him on one knee next to the Twinkie display.  Your friends and family members don't help, considering after every vacation you go on, you come back to hopeful friends who squeal, "Well, did he do it??"

AP Photo
Then you hit a point where you think it's probably never going to happen, you give up, and voila, your beau surprises you.  Kate and Prince William were in an African jungle when he popped the big question, giving Kate his late mother's engagement ring.  Now, don't get me wrong, it's a beautiful ring and a nice tribute to Princess Diana, but do you really want a ring from a marriage that didn't last?  Hmm, just sayin'.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Getting my beef on!

Warning: Vegetarians may not want to read this blog.

Wow, I'm in beef overload. I've eaten more meat in the past 4 days than any one person should eat in a lifetime. I've had so much meat, I can feel it sitting in my arteries. I had to walk to Walgreens today to pick up heartburn medication, because I feel like some of the beef is sitting near my heart.

My beefy weekend started Friday night at Fogo de Chao for Mike's birthday.  If you've never been, it's a Brazilian steakhouse that offers about a dozen different types of beef, served to you at your table.  Dozens of men walk around with their slabs of beef and offer you a chunk.  I ate?  A lot.  I mean, I had to get my money's worth!

Getting my beef on continued last night with my weekly dose of Chipolte.  As I've said before, their burritos are like a little party in your mouth.  Every two days I crave a steak burrito, but I have to limit myself to once a week so my butt doesn't get even larger than it is now.  (When I eventually get pregnant?  All bets are off, I'm going there everyday.)

The beefiness continued today with lunch at Portillo's.  Two of my friends were in town visiting, so we decided to meet there.  I got an Italian beef sandwich dipped once in au jous.  (Mike's advice?  Have it dipped at least twice and get a side of cheese sauce.)  It was delicious, but gut-filling, so I insisted on walking a mile home afterwards to work off the massive amount of calories I just consumed.

Tonight?  Oh god, I just realized I thawed out pork chops for dinner.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I'm in a music video!

I was in a music video last night!  Holla! Okay, so it wasn't just me in a bikini washing or dancing on a car Tawny Kitaen style, but it was still pretty darn exciting.

There's a great Chicago band called "How Far To Austin," and they have a beautiful sound.  They describe it as "rock n soul," and I couldn't agree more.  Check out one of their songs here.  The two lead singers blend beautifully.

One of the members grew up with Mike's friend here in the Chi, so last night they asked about 50 of their closest friends to be in the background of their music video.  We got invited to this beautiful modern home in Bucktown, and these were our instructions.  "Drink, dance and have a good time."  Holla!  My instructions to Mike...."Don't get in the way of me and the camera, because I want ample face time."  Ha!

Of course, I couldn't take any pics during the shoot, but here's what the set looked like.  There were so many candles, the director actually caught his shirt on fire while shooting.  But he was such a professional, he just hit himself until the flame was out, and kept filming!

So stay tuned, as soon as the video is done, I'll post it.  I'm really thinking this could be my big break.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

You're in my seat

What is it about humans that makes us so territorial?

In college, there aren't assigned seats, yet did you notice that you always chose the same seat everyday?  And if someone was in "your" seat, you gave them a dirty look and called them a "jerk" under your breath.

At my first day at a TV station in Indianapolis, I went into the daily editorial meeting and sat down.  Not long afterwards, a producer came in and stood next to me.  I could feel him shooting a death glare my way.
Then he said, "Um, you're in my seat."
I said, "Oh, are these assigned seats?"
He replied, "No."  I looked around, and the other producers looked at me sheepishly.  They all knew he was being a little douche-y, but didn't want to say anything.  I got up and sat down in the seat next to him.

I find that this same kind of territorial nature exists at the gym.  At the YMCA I used to belong to, there were clipboards on each treadmill so you could sign up to use one.  This was helpful when the gym was really busy, but didn't apply to me because I worked out in the afternoons.  (Really the only advantage of being a morning reporter and getting up at 2 a.m.)  One day when I was working out, there were at least 10 open treadmills, but a woman came over to mine, and looked at the clipboard.
She scanned the list, looked at me, and said in an accusatory tone "Did you sign up for this treadmill?"
I looked around at all the empty ones, and said, "Are you serious?"
She huffed and walked away.

I notice the same thing at my new gym in Chicago.  Yesterday when I was on the treadmill, I saw the hairiest and sweatiest man I've ever seen walking towards me.  In my mind, I kept thinking, "Dear God, please don't let him come close to me."
Sure enough, even though there were plenty of empty treadmills, Mr. "I Don't Wear Deodorant" plopped on the one next to me.  The stench from his 'pits made me throw up a little in my mouth.  Today I noticed he was on the same treadmill.

Note to self?  Avoid any treadmill that's close to the 3rd one on the left, and on a first day of work, let everyone sit down before you to avoid an awkward encounter.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Karma Chameleon

Do you believe in Karma?

The definition of Karma: the cosmic principle according to which each person is rewarded or punished in one incarnation according to that person's deeds in the previous incarnation.

I totally believe in Karma, only I believe good or bad deeds come back to help/haunt us in this lifetime.  For example a couple of weeks ago, I went to the ATM on a Saturday, and I was the only one there.  I went to put my card in the machine, but to my surprise...there was already a card inside.  The screen said, "Are you still there?  How much would you like to withdraw?"

Oh jeez.  Suddenly my childhood flashed before my eyes, and I was a 6-year old with pigtails being told by my father, "Now Jeannie, we don't take from others.  Go give this toy back to your friend Paige, because it's hers, not yours."

In my dream, I retort back, "But Pops, it's really expensive living in Chicago and I'm underemployed, so I can't afford my own toys!"

My dad doesn't budge, and when I'm thrust back into reality, my conscience gets the best of me.  I hit "Cancel Transaction" and take the card inside to the bank manager.  

Totally worth it, because Karma paid me back in a big way...

Just a couple of weeks later, we went to dinner at Navy Pier and I used my credit card.  A couple of days later I went to charge something else, but the card was nowhere to be found.  I called the restaurant, and they didn't have it.  I started freaking out because two days had passed, which meant ample opportunity for someone to charge up a storm.  Plus, I knew that Navy Pier is super busy with tourists, so I'm thinking my card is half way to Duluth.  I immediately got on-line to check my statement...and....nothing.  Not a single charge.

Are you kidding me?  Thank God!  I immediately canceled my card and got a new one.

In the words of Karma-loving Justin Timberlake, what goes around, comes around.  So treat people well, don't steal and always be the person your parents would be proud of.  (Thanks Pops.)

Monday, November 8, 2010

A website you must check out

Okay, I just found the coolest website.  Ever.

Have you heard of  It's a website that offers tons of deals for restaurants all over the country.  I typed in our zip code and found tons of really unique and interesting dining spots in our new neighborhood.  Then I was able to buy gift certificates for those restaurants at really cheap prices.  For example, you can get a $25 gift certificate for only $10.  But then, they had a special going on today, so I got $100 worth of gift certificates at 4 different restaurants for....get this...$13.50! (One of those restaurants is this's called "Dine" and it looks awesome!)  Isn't that crazy?  There doesn't seem to be a catch either, and the coupons never expire.

Between this, my daily deal and e-mail deals I get from CBS, I'm never paying full price again!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Think before you type

When did we make it okay for people to make totally obnoxious and unnecessary comments after news stories, blogs and message boards?  When you offer anonymity, people seem to think it's okay to write whatever they want, no matter how inappropriate, offensive or wacky it is.

Tonight I was looking at the bio of a San Francisco news anchor.  For some reason, the station allows people to post anonymous comments after each bio.  Here are some of the comments on this anchor's page, and I'm not even kidding.

* "To look your best you should cut your hair 6-8 inches and don't wear dangly earrings." (Okay, thanks, I'll get right on that.)

* "What's up with you the past few days?  You seem bored and flat.  What's up?"  (When I got e-mails like this I wanted to reply, "Well you seem ugly and stupid.  What's up?"

* "Great dress this morning!  My marine observation skills spyed (spelled wrong) a possible belly button ring.  Yes?  No?"  (A viewer once asked what color my toenail polish was.  Creepy.)

* "Love the extensions.  Your hair is longer and more luxurious than my 14-year old daughter Alexa's." (Way to support your daughter!)  "Alexa has warned me she already wants breast implants upon high school graduation so she can be more successful."  (Yes, this is the way to success.  Thank god you're instilling that in your impressionable young daughter.)

* "I enjoy watching you in the mornings, but can you loosen up and smile once in awhile?" (I think she should smile during the whole show, especially stories about death.)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

My dreams are coming true!

It's official, Jorge and Santiago have made all my dreams come true!  (I knew that line would keep you reading.)

Jorge and Santiago are Macy's delivery men, and they delivered our brand new King bed this afternoon.  Yay, yay, yay!!!!  I've decided there are a few keys to a good marriage:

--Don't ask a man what he's thinking about when he's quiet.  If he's not talking, it doesn't mean he's mad, he's just contemplating his Fantasy Football choices.  Leave him alone.

--Don't gripe because he doesn't put the seat down or replace the toilet paper on the roll, because it won't do any good.  They are taught by their fathers to do the opposite of what you bitch about.

--Finally, buy a King bed.  Sure, cuddling is fun, but after five minutes your sweating and he's snoring.  You need your own space, ASAP.

You regular blog followers know that I apparently have a man's body temperature.  I like my house to be a balmy 50 degrees in the winter, because my body hibernates at night, and my body heat kicks in.  Last night, I actually woke up with sweat running down my chest.  (TMI?  Perhaps.)  I also sleep next to a man (It's okay, we're married) who has an equally hot body temperature.  And to top it off, I have two little hot tamale Chihuahua's who sleep under the covers and put off more body heat than screaming women at a Barry Manilow concert.  All of this combined has led to many a sleepless night, with me crying, "I just want to sleep alone!" (I bet you men have never said that.)

So last weekend, I decided it was time to buy a bigger bed.  Sure King beds are ridiculously expensive, and this one now takes up our whole room, but I say it's worth it.  Will it work?  Stay tuned...Mike is out of town and the Chi's like to sleep with my mom when she's here.  It looks like I'm all alone tonight!  (Unless I call Jorge or Santiago, of course.)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

I'm a hoarder

Is there something you're absolutely addicted to buying?  Perhaps you just love having new china.  Maybe you just can't pass up the latest and greatest hunting equipment. (Pops, this is you.)  Perhaps you live for a new pair of designer shoes (Heather C., this is you.)

For me, I'm totally and completely addicted to toiletries.  If it smells girly, I buy it.  If it paints your nails a cool turquoise blue, it's mine.  If it's a cream that promises to stop the affects of aging, oh lordy, I can't pass it up.  If it makes my hair curly, or straight and smooth, I'll buy two.

During our move, it became painfully obvious that my love for toiletries has actually morphed into a sickness, and well, a full blown addiction.  I realized I don't have one facial astringent, I have four.  I don't have one body lotion, I have 27.  I don't have one shower gel, I have 10.  It's kind of disgusting (in a pretty, floral-y kind of way.)

I've made a promise to Mike that before move #11 in 11 years, I'm going to have less stuff.  Period.  I'm going to simplify my life.  My goal over the next year is to use all my extra products without replenishing them.  How am I going to do?  Well, my first test came today.  I went to CVS which for me normally involves roaming aisle after aisle, buying new face creams and cleansers I'm just sure I can't live without.  Instead, I stuck to my list of sandwich baggies, band-aids and toothpaste.  Holla!  As Mike says, a cluttered space equals a cluttered mind.  I don't about that, I just know it means there's a lot more crap to unpack.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Get your vote on!

Here were are...another election day.  Did you vote??  Be honest, how much of the ballot looked totally foreign to you?  Does anyone ever know the 97 judges who are asking to be kept?  It's not like they're even running for election, they're just asking you to check "yes" for keeping them.  I always mark yes, presuming they have a family at home they need to feed.

This was my first experience voting in Illinois and it was an interesting one.  First of all, we voted in a downtown high-rise, and there was NO parking.  (See picture.)  We first parked in the circle and threw on the hazard lights (just like we always do), but as soon as we got out of the car, a very disgruntled doorman ran out and yelled, "Don't you think about parking here!  I will have you towed!"  Sheesh, talk about trying to suppress our freedoms.  Mike moved the car while I went inside.  

Then I didn't have to show my ID to the poll workers.  What is that?  Do I just look trusting?  When I was handed the ballot, I honestly didn't know what to do with it.  Next to each candidate, there is a black arrow with a big hole in the center.  If you vote for that candidate, you have to fill in the lines of the arrow. (BTW-This is also the test Kindergarteners have to pass to move on to the 1st grade.)  My marker didn't work well, so I hope my vote counts!  I then went on to only vote for the candidates whose television ads show them talking to a group of seniors or holding babies.  Those are the ones you can trust.

Regardless of who wins or loses today, I commend all of the people running for office.  It's a thankless job that forces you to make small talk with a bunch of crazy people.  You also have to act like their long-standing problems with a neighbor over an apple tree on their property is an important one worth looking into.  You also have to give up most Saturdays to campaign, and let's face it, I'm way to selfish for that kind of a job.

Monday, November 1, 2010

It's haunting me!

When I moved to Chicago, I knew I needed to pare down in a big way.  I was going from a 2-story townhouse I lived in by myself, to a 1-bedroom apartment I was going to share with Mike.  Therefore, I sold my kitchen table and four matching chairs.  I sold my coffee table and two end tables.  I asked my mom to store my second bed and matching furniture.  I donated an overstuffed chair.  I donated tons of clothes and paintings on the wall.  So you get it, I got rid of a ton of stuff.

Then when Mike and I were unpacking what I did bring to the city, he pulled this brown circular tube out of a box and exclaimed, "What is this???  A recorder??  How did a recorder make the cut?"

I laughed so hard, because I honestly had no idea.  I was forced to buy this recorder for my 4th grade music class at Jessup Elementary in Cheyenne, Wyoming.  I learned one song on it, an awesome rendition of "Hot Cross Buns."  (Really, it's not awesome and I don't think there is more than one way to play it, but that totally sounds better.)  I grabbed it from Mike, and threw it out. (Or so I thought!)

Then this week, as we moved into our new apartment, I went back to the old one to clean.  When I opened the door, the recorder was there as plain as day...sitting on the counter along with Lysol and other cleaning supplies.  I honestly thought I was being punked!  How did it get there?  Didn't I throw the damn thing away?

So in my life that's included 10 moves in 10 years, living in 5 states and getting rid of most everything, my 4th grade recorder somehow has survived.  There has to be deeper meaning to this....perhaps I missed my calling as a professional recorder player.  Perhaps I was meant to sell hot dogs on Michigan Ave.  Perhaps I have hot buns....