Month: April 2006

Chicago Spring Fling Conference! :) (Long & Lots of Pictures)

[X-posted at bananagirl19]

Hello! I am back from an amazing, exhausting, completely fun weekend in Chicago! The Chicago-North RWA chapter is incredible, and so are the people I met there.

FRIDAY

Mandy (mandywriter) picked me up from the airport and it was like we’d been friends forever, which we pretty much have. We started talking and joking right away. She took me to the hotel and chilled out while I unpacked in my VERY NICE hotel room. Let me tell you about this room. It was more like a suite. 25 inch TV, desk, easy chair, couch with a foldaway, king sized bed. Beautiful. I’d ordered strawberries and champagne, but I didn’t open it right away, and I’m glad I waited. More on that later. :)

Mandy and I registered for the conference (we were the first two!), then went out to lunch at a place called RAM. I’d never heard of it, but it was pretty nice. Of course, I got the messiest meal ever, but it was really yummy. By the time we got back to the hotel, Sara (sbennettwealer) was there! We went up to their room and hung out for a while, then headed down to the conference. I spotted Dia (agentobscura) right away, so we went to say Hi. She gave us all a group hug and seriously, we all hit it off right away. I felt like I’d been hanging out with these women my whole life.

The first thing we did was attend a “panel” of sorts. Four authors, open dialogue. It was interesting. Alesia Holliday, Mary Alice Monroe, Jennifer Crusie, and Bob Mayer spoke and it was funny and really nice. Afterwards, I went to Alesia to introduce myself and she recognized my name from the Yahoo! teenchicklit loop. She was awesome, and here I am with her:

We had a HUGE break, so Sara, Mandy, Gail and I went to an Italian restaurant. It was yummy. I got a half order which turned out to be a good decision, because it was the perfect amount of food. When we went back, there was class. Sara and I went to “Get Out of Deadwood” where we met Stephanie Hale (stephhale) and a really cool girl named Carmen. We went and had chocolate at the Chocolate Reception (um, check out this damn sign:)


DESERT????????

More pictures….

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Dawes Arboretum…! (Pictures)

First thing— I LOVE MY NEW CAMERA! It’s amazing. One of my favorite things about SLR is that there is practically NO shutter lag. And the manual focus option–LOVE IT. Oh yeah. I had a blast today. I got a polarizing filter, and I can really see a difference in some of the photos.

Second thing–Dawes Aroboretum is so nice this time of year. I didn’t see any mushrooms (ewwww), and many of the trees were flowering. It was just slightly cool, but not too much. A pretty day, perfect for taking pictures. Aidan and I went today for some Mommy/Son bonding time and also for a photo shoot of sorts.

Check It Out!

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Smiles! (Pictures)


Double Rainbow on Easter morning 2006

Hola!

Late update, or early, I guess, huh? I’d planned to do it Saturday evening, but a trip to Best Buy beckoned me, where I picked up a digital SLR camera! I got the Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT and I LOVE IT. I haven’t even gotten a chance to play with it fully, but so far, it’s awesome. I know that I’m going to want lenses next. Heh. I just really wanted a nice camera to take to the Grand Canyon with me. Not that my Sony isn’t nice, because it definitely is, but there is something magical about SLR. I’m going to be totally loaded down when we go out there. YAY for fun pictures!

Speaking of fun pictures, here are a few from the past week:


Another rainbow picture.


Dinner at O’Charley’s on Monday. SO yummy!!!


ROCK ON!!!


Morning Commute.

My week in review:

Monday – work, evening out with friends, including David who was in town for Easter. Yummy O’Charley’s.
Tuesday – work, the cookout at Craig’s.
Wednesday – work, then life group/party at my house. Cookout food, movies, fun.
Thursday – a trip to Half-Price books where I loaded up on CDs, a few books, and bookmarks. I spent over $30, so I got the free tote bag!
Friday – work, then RELAXING the rest of the evening. Reading, watching TV, just trying to dump my brain.
Saturday – wrote, relaxed, napped, shopped, at dinner at Red Lobster. Yummy. Aidan also threw a minor fit and broke the fish bowl (no fish were in it, thank goodness!). No fun. Ha.

So, here is the thing. Lately, I’ve been craving and eating a TON of fish. Well, I guess that’s relative, but yeah. Just fish drenched in lemon juice. That’s what I had tonight and it was sooo yummy. I feel kind of bad, though. I’m eating Freddie and Flossie’s relatives, in a way. but I guess not. Anyway, I’ve been TRYING to eat better. French fries are so dang good, though. However, I’ve increased my intake of fish, veggies, and salads, so that helps, right? I’ve been eating too much red meat, though. I should definitely try to cut that down.

I had the scare of my life. After we were done in Best Buy, we were ready to leave, of course. Aidan stood in the corridor and would not come out. When Chris went to go and get him, he took off into the store and disappeared. I went after him, and couldn’t find him. I alerted a couple of employees, and the guy at the guard desk locked the doors and everyone was on the lookout. Aidan finally came running back up to the front. I didn’t know whether to spank him or hug him. So I picked him up, hugged him and said “You’re in BIG trouble MISTER!” And I was NOT joking.

I get Aidan duty ALL day later on. That will be hard. I’m trying to figure out what we can do. I definitely have to call itskels to see if she wants to go to Old Navy, then I might take Aidan to Bob Evans or something. I’m exhausted just thinking about it. He was up Saturday morning at 7:45am!!!!

I also have to go to the library and drop off some books. I’d LOVE to go to the park, but darned if it’s not supposed to storm tomorrow. BOOOOOOO.

I need to get some rest, though. I’m going to have a busy day. ‘Til next time!

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*Choking, Sputtering Laughter*

Email exchange with itskels:

—–Original Message—–
From: Kelly
Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2006 3:03 PM
To: Ronica
Subject: RE: Hey!

This dude over here farting…

——————————————————————————–

From: Ronica
Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2006 3:23 PM
To: Kelly
Subject: RE: Hey!

I’m sorry about the farting dude. Ew. Is he loud? Or just smelly?

——————————————————————————–

—–Original Message—–
From: Kelly
Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2006 3:21 PM
To: Ronica
Subject: RE: Hey!

It’s so nasty, it’s LOUD and SMELLY. The worst of both worlds.

SAVE ME!!!!!

——————————————————————————–

From: Ronica
Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2006 3:25 PM
To: Kelly
Subject: RE: Hey!

ROFL ROFL ROFL ROFL!

I am so sorry you have to deal with that. GROSS!

Is he grunting after, or saying excuse me?

You need to get away from your desk for a while.

——————————————————————————–

—–Original Message—–
From: Kelly
Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2006 3:37 PM
To: Ronica
Subject: RE: Hey!

Girl he ain’t doing shit! He just farts and keeps going…the one time it got so bad, I just said “OH HELL NAW” real loud, cuz the shit is trifling…I don’t give a damn how rich you are, you still STANK!

—–Original Message—–
From: Kelly
Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2006 3:44 PM
To: Ronica
Subject: RE: Hey!

He is KILLING me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

——————————————————————————–

—–Original Message—–
From: Ronica
Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2006 3:51 PM
To: Kelly
Subject: RE: Hey!

What the heck did HE eat???? Ew.

—–Original Message—–
From: Kelly
Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2006 3:49 PM
To: Ronica
Subject: RE: Hey!

OMG I’m gonna buy some Bean-o and put it on his desk.

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Spring Fling Plans

The Chicago Spring Fling is next Friday!!!! Oh my gosh!! How excited am I??

The schedule has been posted, so these are the classes I plan to take:

Friday:
Getting out of Deadwood

Saturday:
Be the Best Applicant for the (Writing) Job
Making Your Characters Real
Charms for the Writing Life /Gris-Gris for Writers
Inside an Editor’s Mind
The Care and Feeding of Agents

While I am there, I get to meet cool people, do cool things, and hopefully get insanely inspired to finish my current WIP (which is now titled!). I’ve never been steeped in writing like that before, so I’m definitely looking forward to learning what I can, networking, and just being there. Good times!

(Originally published at Anywhere Is…)

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