Monday, August 31, 2009

I'm Finally Back

Well, it certainly feels like I have been gone for a week. I was in Omaha from Wednesday thru Sunday. I was helping out some stores up there. Glad to be home!

Work is getting crazier every day. The economy plays a big role in our jobs. I mean, if people don't have money, they aren't going to shop as much. What irks me is that many people think Wal-mart is cheaper and they really are not. They do a great job of giving people that perception.

Anyway, it's a new week and I have lots to do today. Have a great one!


Monday, August 24, 2009

Naughty Girl!

I am being so naughty! I am blogging while listening to this boring conference call. The conference call usually lasts for an hour and a half. Blah, blah, blah....

The kid and I headed off to Target early this morning only to find out that it does not even open until 8 a.m. Rats! Oh well. We are going shopping today after school. We will pick up some shorts then.

There is an insurance guy here to estimate the damages from that weird hail storm we had. Hopefully it won't be too bad. We are definitely going to need a new roof.

Okay, I don't have much to say, so I will catch up with you later.


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Unproductive Sunday

Today was a very unproductive day. I went to work late this morning and only worked a half day. I didn't get much done today around the house nor did I have any fun. My afternoon nap didn't even work out. What a blah day! I did have lunch with a friend, so that was nice.

This week will be pretty busy for me. Tomorrow will be a long day. The kid and I need to run to Target in the morning to purchase some black running shorts for his P.E. class. We are going to attempt to go shopping tomorrow after school. The kid wants to get more shorts for school. He doesn't know where he wants to go, but he knows he wants long shorts. Okay. That narrows it down (not really). At least he wants to get clothes. I was worried because last year he could have cared less about clothing. This year he is a little more aware of styles and what he likes. I guess high school does that to you. Good thing his mom likes to spend money on clothing for him! I have been waiting for him to want to buy clothing now for about 4 years. Finally!

I know what the routine will be though. He will want to get in and out as fast as possible. He will find his size, try on one pair and won't want to try on anything else. Unlucky for him, I make him try on absolutely everything! I refuse to leave a store unless I know it's going to work. I hate returning things to the store. It's a waste of time. I would rather get it done right the first time. Know what I mean?

Have you ever tried the Del Monte Fruit Chillers Freeze and Eat Tubes? They are so good! One freeze tube is only 55 calories and zero fat. My favorite is strawberry. You can find them on the canned fruit aisle of your grocery store. You freeze and eat them. Yummy! I am enjoying one right now. But it's hard to eat and type at the same time, so I am saying goodbye!


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Saturday Stuff

I decided to take the day off today. I was suppose to work, but I ended up putting in 13 hours on my day off Tuesday, so here I am.

I am sipping on coffee in the early afternoon and just finished my cinnamon toast. I woke up around 8 this morning. I am glad I was able to sleep in. Between doing laundry and watching the Food Network, not much else is going on. The kid is going to his cousin's birthday party later this evening while Josh and I plan to visit his sister's family.

The boys are outside doing yard work right now. Josh went and bought a new weed eater for the lawn. I loved how he asked me if it was okay first. I have a pretty tight grip on the expenses in the household, so it was nice that he asked. A month ago he tried to purchase a laptop for me, but it was something that we did not need, so I made him take it back. It was suppose to be a gift, which I thanked him for, but we did not need it. I would rather spend that money on other items, like a weed eater. Call me crazy.

I really need to tackle the unorganized spare bedroom. It has a million books and needs to be organized. It's kind of that room where you throw all of you "extra stuff" into. It's getting a little out of hand. I counted four boxes of stuff and that is just too many. We'll see.


Friday, August 21, 2009

Vacation - The Last Days

Well, in conclusion to my vacation we had a day of rest on Friday. We went through my grandparents' house and packed things we wanted to take back with us. I brought back two hand bells and a whiskey statue. We loaded the rental car up Friday night and woke up early on Saturday morning to head back. We left Fostoria, Ohio around 5:45 am and made it to Kansas City by 3:30 p.m. central time. It took us an hour to drop off the rental car and transfer everything over to our car. We made it back to Wichita by 7:30 p.m. I drove from Ohio to Kansas City and Josh drove from Kansas City to Wichita.

I had such a good time on vacation. It was nice to have my son there to enjoy my past memories and make new ones. We look forward to when we will be able to back again, perhaps in a couple of years. Heck, maybe the kid will be driving by then. I won't get ahead of myself.

We enjoyed Sunday at home resting up from our vacation and then it was back to work for me on Monday. The kid started school last Friday and just finished his first full week this week. He likes it so far but he has been unusually quiet. There are lots of kids at this school and it is the biggest school here. I hope he does alright.

Anyway, it's back to the daily work grind. I won't try and bore all of you every day with my temperamental stories about work. I'll try to change it up here and there.

Thanks for letting me show you our journey on vacation.


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Vacation - Day Seven at Cedar Point!

The first coaster - Millennium Force. This was the kid's second favorite coaster and my brother's favorite.

I took this photo on the way to the Maverick.

This is the Maverick. This was Josh's favorite coaster and the kid's third favorite coaster.

There was only a 15 minute wait for the Mean Streak. It is one of the park's oldest coasters.

Josh hated the Mine Ride. He said it was way too jolty.

Here is the Gemini. This is where two coasters race each other, blue vs. red.

This is the kid's favorite coaster - the Magnum XL-200! He rode in a car by himself.

This one is the Corkscrew.

Iron Dragon

The Mantis was my kid's fourth favorite ride. It is a stand up coaster.

This was the last coaster. The Raptor is one that you sit in and your feet dangle. This was the kid's fifth favorite.

There was another coaster before the Raptor. It was an inside coaster and was totally in the dark. I couldn't take a picture of this one. The kid and my brother wanted to ride on the Top Thrill Dragster, but it was down for repairs. Too bad because that was the main one everyone wanted to ride. Guess we have a good reason to go back soon.
Cedar Point was so much fun for the kid. My mom and Aunt Jo came with us also. I can't do the coasters anymore because I get motion sickness. But we rode the train about 6 times and my mom just loved it. The kid was very happy and said it was the perfect end to his summer. I was glad he had a great time. He rode 11 coasters with my brother. We were there from 10:30 in the morning until 7:30 in the evening. Not bad for 11 coasters. The kid did not ride on any other rides except for the coasters.
We headed back to Fostoria and ate dinner at Frickers in Fremont, Ohio. I was extremely tired. I hit the hay as soon as we came home. Friday was going to be a day of rest for us and we would be driving back on Saturday. I will post tomorrow about the last two days.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Vacation - Day Six (Plus Extra!)

Day six of our vacation brings us to Wednesday. This is the day we decided to have our mini family reunion. We had it at the retirement home my grandmother was living in, since she is not able to travel. It was nice. Most of my cousins were there and all of my aunts and uncles were there. The Kid was able to officially meet his great grandmother for the first time. He is the oldest great grand child, so it was nice to get a picture of them.

We ate dinner and had family discussions. Half of the group went out to the local pub afterward while the other half went back to the house. I went back to the house. My dad, the "rebel" was the only adult that went out with the younger group. Of course....

In the first picture is my Uncle John, my dad, my Aunt Ginger and my Uncle Scott with my grandmother seated in the middle. These are my grandmother's four kids.

In this second picture is my tiny mom, my Uncle Bob and my Aunt Jo. These were all of the in-laws.

In this picture is the kid with my grandmother. This shot was taken by surprise and I love the outcome. It wasn't staged and those usually make the best pictures.

On a side note, the kid started his first day of school. He is now a freshman in high school. Girls, watch out! He's a cutie and a quite the teaser. I am sure this school year will prove to be interesting.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Vacation - Day Five

Wow, we are moving right along now aren't we? Day Five brings us to Tuesday. We stayed the night in Cinci because it was an evening game the night before. Wow, talk about being tired. Josh slept in until after 9 a.m. For some reason, my brother and I kept getting up super early. We would get up around 6 or 7 in the morning and that was at Eastern time. We are on Central time back home. It was strange.

Anyway, we got our things together and decided to have breakfast at Bob Evans. You can't come to Ohio and not eat at a Bob Evans. They have the best home-style breakfast and the service was great. I got their 2 egg special with hash browns, sausage, and pan cakes. It was delicious!

After breakfast we called my other cousin who lives in Columbus. She is the older sister of cousin Chuck Norris (lol...). We figured we would get there around lunch time. She gave us the address and we set our Garmin for the destination. That darn Garmin got us lost. Actually, there were several bridges out and we had to take the long way around to get there. We took mainly back roads and went through a very pretty little town called Lebanon. Holy cow was it beautiful. I did not take any pictures because I was getting frustrated with all of the detours. We finally arrived in Columbus a little after 1 p.m. Not exactly on time, but we were there.

My cousin drove us over to the Ohio State Campus so we could gawk and wish over and over we went there during our college days. This is our family's favorite college. We root for them all the time. Go Bucks! This is the Big O in front of the football stadium.

This is the Kid with my brother across the street from the campus. It was so funny because there was a lot of traffic and people were actually trying to slow down so we could get a picture. We totally looked like tourists!

Here is the Kid and my brother in front of the football stadium. My brother is 6 ft. tall. My kid is almost getting there and he is only 14.

After touring the campus, we decided to grab a late lunch over at Eddie George's restaurant. It was awesome. I had a mushroom swiss burger and it was one of the best burgers I have had in a very long time.

While there, we all had to use the restroom. The guys told me that you could see out of the window/mirror at the televisions on the restaurant floor while you were doing your business at the urinal. They also told me that the urinals had an upside down M for those poor Michigan fans who dared to enter and eat at this fine establishment. Too funny!

After lunch, we said goodbye to our cousin, but not for long. She was coming back to Fostoria for our family reunion the next day. The family reunion is what we will cover tomorrow in Day Six.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Vacation - Day Three and Four

Okay, so we arrived in Fostoria around 7:30 p.m. We had to wait for my uncle to get there because my grandparents' house was locked up and he had the key. My uncle ran up town to get some pizza for us so we wouldn't have to worry about dinner.

While we waited for him to get there, we walked around the two acres of land the house was on. My uncle decided to put up the traditional vegetable garden. When my grandfather was alive, he was a true home grown gardener. He could grow any kind of vegetable and had the most beautiful flower gardens in the neighborhood. I wish I had a picture to show you, but I was so exhausted from driving the whole 11 1/2 hours that I forgot. Yes, I drove the whole way. I am must like my dad. He drives a tanker and has driven trucks his whole life since he was a teenager in the Army. I can drive for hours and hours. I love it.

So, we settled in, ate pizza, talked to my aunt and uncle, then went to bed. The kid got to sleep in this little twin bed that I used to have to sleep in when I was a little kid. It was soooooo weird seeing him in that bed when it used to be mine as a kid. All of the grand kids have had to sleep in that little bed from one time or another. It brings back such great memories of our summer vacations there. Here is the bed. This is actually how the Kid sleeps sometimes. Weird, huh?

On Sunday, we headed up to the store and bought lots of groceries since we were staying for a week. When we returned home, I made hot Italian sub sandwiches for everyone at lunch. For dinner I made my famous oven fried chicken breasts with garlic mashed potatoes and green bean/onion saute. The family loved it! My aunt, uncle and cousin (Chuck Norris) loved it. My kid is a Chuck Norris joke fanatic and thought my cousin looked like him, thus came the nick name Chuck. It's one of those "had to be there" moments.

Anyway, the family brought over lawn darts and we were all outside playing and having fun. No television, no Internet, and barely any bars on my cellular phone. I had to drive into town to get any phone service. Now that is a real vacation!

Monday morning came quickly and I made breakfast for everyone. Biscuits with butter and jelly, fluffy scrambled eggs and hickory smoked bacon. Uh yeah, no leftovers for that meal! Josh, my brother, the Kid and I all got packed and left for Cincinnati around 9 a.m. We decided to go to a Reds game Monday night and stay the night in Cincinnati. We would travel to Columbus on Tuesday morning.

When we got to Cincinnati, we headed to the Great American Ball Park and bought our tickets for the game that night against the Cubs. There were so many Cubs fans in town. That's all we saw that afternoon. We then headed over the river and through the woods to Newport, Kentucky. We had ice cream at Graeter's and headed for the shops. It was a beautiful day, as you can see from the picture I took of my brother, the Kid and Josh. After walking around and looking at all of the shops, we decided to check into our hotel and grab an early dinner. We had dinner at the Machine Room at the ball park. It was pretty good. The Kid got the usual, a bacon cheeseburger and fries.

The Reds lost that night, but we had a great time. The crowd was lively and a home run was hit right into our seats. We didn't catch it though because we left 30 minutes before it happened. We saw it on the highlights back at the hotel. The kid was upset about it, but soon got over it. We were all so tired! I slept great that night.

Stay tuned.... our visit to Columbus to visit my cousin and the OSU campus will be the next post.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Vacation - Day Two

Day Two of vacation consisted of a 12 hour drive through the Midwest. We left Kansas City around 6:30 a.m. We ended up taking two vehicles. My dad drove his truck and took my mom and my brother with him. I had Josh and the kid with me in the rental car.

I am a speeder. I never go the speed limit. I usually go about 9 miles over the speed limit. My dad, however, does not speed at all. So, whenever we had a pit stop for gas or bathroom breaks, we would have to wait around 10 minutes for him to get there. We never stopped for food because I packed lunches for everyone. We had ham and turkey sandwiches, chips, baby carrots with ranch dip and Bing cherries. I also provided each vehicle with a goodie bag of Krispy Kreme doughnuts, cereal bars, cookies and candy. We also had a cooler in each vehicle with plenty of soda and water. This way, we would not have to stop and get food and drink on the way there. It also saved us a ton of money getting all of the provisions at the grocery store.

While on the road you always see interesting things. There are always strange names for some of these little towns and my favorite part is when we are crossing rivers and creeks. Those names are quite unique. One creek we crossed was called Nameless. Yep, pretty interesting.

I thought of my blogging friend, Seth, while driving through Indianapolis. Buddy, what is up with the speed limit? It's a racing town for goodness sake! Nothing like doing 50 miles an hour the whole way through. Anyway, Josh got really excited when he saw the Lucas Oil Stadium. He says it looks like a huge barn from far away. This is where the Colts play. I told him to take a picture so I could post it for everyone. It looks like a nice facility.

As we kept driving, I was anxiously anticipating the Ohio state line. I always get really excited when we cross over. My son kept commenting on how I was acting so different. I tried to explain to him about all of the awesome memories I have as a kid doing these road trips. It brings back such wonderful memories for me and that is something I want to continue with him. He completely understood and told me he liked seeing me that way. I was also finally starting to unwind from work. It takes me a couple of days to decompress. My job is very high stress, so I need a few days to unwind.

Welcome to Ohio!!!

Well, this concludes my second installment. My next post will include Day Three and Four. Have a great day!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Vacation - Day One (yes! pictures included...)

Well, I have been gone long enough and I can't procrastinate these posts any longer. I am back from vacation and it was a loooong one! Much needed though. I told all of you I would post pictures, probably against my better judgement, but whatever. You will not be seeing any pictures of myself, but you will get to see pictures of my family, Josh and the kid. The trip was fantastic, so I thought I would do a day by day play per post. This is Day One.

We decided to stay in Kansas City overnight and leave from there on Saturday morning. We drove to Kansas City on Friday and met up with Josh's brother and wife and my brother. Josh's brother and his wife live in downtown KC, while my brother lives in Lenexa. We all met downtown at Minsky's, which is our favorite place for pizza. There was plenty of beer, food, laughter and excitement that night. The kid wrapped his retainer in his napkin and forgot to put them back on after eating. We got about one block from the restaurant before freaking out. I called the restaurant and the kid was able to go back in and dig through the trash for his retainer. Lucky for him, it was right on top. Yes, lucky for him....

After dinner, we headed back to the hotel and went to bed early. We would have to get up at 5:00 a.m. to go and pick up our rental car at 6 a.m. And I do have stories to tell about Sunday, so I will leave you with these pictures I took. I tried to document as much as I could on the trip. Sometimes you just forget to get the camera out, you know?

My Nature's Choice Pizza at Minsky's

From left to right: my brother, Josh, Josh's brother, Josh's brother's wife, the Kid. The couple in the back ground was on a blind date. It was painfully obvious to us all. Painful being the key word here folks!