Ampersands are Fun (Long/Lots of Pictures)

I had a fun Labor Day weekend. My friend from college, who I’ll refer to as friendAdam, came into town and crashed at our pad. I don’t have pictures of him to post at his request, but we had a great time. It had been about 10 years (at least) since I’d last seen him, and we spent hours catching up. He also had a goal to eat his way through Chicago, and Adam and I, naturally, had to tag along. :)

The first place we went to eat was Hot Doug’s.

Adam & Me
On the way to Hot Doug’s. I’m wearing a shirt that Star bought me.

Here I am enjoying a Chicago-style hot dog and a regular ole corn dog.

Mmm, Hot Dog!

For dinner, we went to Arturo’s, a 24 Mexican food joint, and I had a tostada. It was amazing. I woke up craving it for breakfast the next morning. After Arturo’s, we went to Margie’s Candies, where I had my Swiss chocolate sundae…

Swiss Chocolate Sundae

…with the warm chocolate marshmallow sauce. :p

Chocolate Marshmallow Sauce

Mmmmm. That’s another thing I often crave for breakfast.

The next day, we went to Weber Grill where I had filet mignon and a baked potato, and a passion fruit mango margarita on the rocks.

Lunch at Weber Grill

We walked down Michigan Avenue:

Flags Along Michigan Avenue
U.S. flag, City of Chicago flag, State of Illinois flag

Here is one of the funny dresses along Michigan Ave. It’s made out of Coke and other pop cans.

Coke Dress

We also went to Millennium Park. Cloud Gate never gets old for me.

Cloud Gate

That night, we’d attempted to go to Martini Park for dinner, but they had a $10 cover for the boys (I was free!) and the live band there was WAYYYY too loud. We then tried to go to Lou Malnotti’s for pizza, but seriously, a touristy place during Labor Day weekend… not a good idea. There was a 50 minute wait. So we went home and partied with the neighbors. When the hunger got to us, we headed to Pie Eyed. Adam was VERY happy about numerous things.

Happy Adam

The next day, we went to friendAdam’s cousin’s for a cookout/party which was a lot of fun, and Monday night, we finally made it to Martini Park. friendAdam had been talking about this place and their chocolate chip cookie dough won tons ALL weekend, and we finally got some:

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Won Tons

We also had Kobe beef sliders, pulled pork sliders, macaroni and cheese sticks, and home made donuts.

Kobe Beef Sliders and BBQ Pork Sliders Home-Made DoNuts with Raspberry Sauce & Chocolate Sauce

It was a great weekend! :)

Today, Aidan officially started kindergarten! I talked to him last night and he was very excited. Apparently, there are FIVE Aidans in his class. FIVE. *hits self on head*

Before his big trip, he went to Phoenix with his dad and Matt. Chris sent me some of the pictures. :)

Aidan in Phoenix 2008

Aidan in Phoenix 2008 Aidan in Phoenix 2008

Aidan in Phoenix 2008 Aidan in Phoenix 2008 Aidan in Phoenix 2008

Monday, I start my assignment at Ambrosi. I’m excited and nervous. I know I’ll get back into the working all day flow again, but it’s still kinda crazy. Then soon after that is Disney! Woooo!

I popped into the library today to pick up Breaking Dawn, and I also got Anybody Out There by Marian Keyes (it’s a reread–I just reread Rachel’s Holiday for the first time in years and fell in love with the Walsh sisters all over again), Suite Scarlett by Maureen Johnson, Wuthering Heights, a couple of Disney World travel guides, and a couple of other books. YAY books.

And today was a good mail day. Rosa sent me a really CUTE ampersand tee-shirt. She’s so good to me! ♥

Who watched ANTM last night? I’m looking forward to this season, and for now, I am on team JOCLYN, ISIS, and ELINA. We’ll see how things pan out, yes?

I suppose that’s it for now. Adam wants to watch the last two episodes of Arrested Development with me. We have all three seasons on DVD. :)

(Originally published at Anywhere Is…)

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A Potluck Entry

I don’t know about you, but the opening ceremonies blew me away last night. China does not play around when it comes to pyrotechnics. I LOVE watching the Parade of Nations. Yes, it takes hours, but I enjoy watching the outfits and the different faces and the different people. Amazing. At first, I was grumbling because there were many times that Bush didn’t seem to even TRY to be looking interested, but when I saw other world leaders SLEEPING, I stopped being so critical. At least W stayed awake, even if he was checking his watch. Sigh.

In a little over a week, I start a temp assignment at Ambrosi, an advertising firm. I am very excited about this assignment. Not only does it pay really well, but I get to look at some really cool stuff. I’m nervous, of course, but I’m also excited. Plus, the train stop is right across the street from the building, and there is an Argo Tea downstairs! One of the best things about having the chance to temp this summer is the fact that I am getting so much experience in different fields. When Ambrosi is completed, I can say I have agency experience (I actually do have a little bit with Trisect and S2) as well as educational publishing experience. Not to mention the flexibility that comes from being able to state my availability. It’s been quite a blessing.

I love when I’m lying in bed, and I feel a little thump next to me, then tiny footsteps walking across my legs and back. I know that means Helena is settling in for the night, or at least a few minutes.

I recently decided that I wanted to get used to wearing contacts again because I do not want to bother with glasses (other than sunglasses) when I am in Disney World. So, while I was out yesterday, I stopped at an America’s Best eye clinic to see about getting an exam. I hadn’t been examined in two years, and I knew that my glasses were not as effective as they used to be. :( My vision did deteriorate a bit, but it’s still not too bad. Anyway, now I have new contacts coming in, and soon, I’m going to go get new glasses. YAY. Let me tell you, it’s weird wearing contacts again–not having my glasses on and being able to see clearly all the way to the back of the apartment. I pick up my boxes of contacts in a few days, but he gave me a trial pair to wear home.

I love it when I’m sitting on our new loveseat, typing away on my laptop, and Crookshanks comes and curls up right next to me. Yes, he usually plops his big butt right where I need to move the mouse, but it’s still very sweet.

I finally got to read Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr. I thought the book was beautifully written. I got to meet Melissa in April of this year at an author signing in La Grange, IL. It’s so easy to see that this woman LOVES writing and creating stories, that love definitely comes through in her writing. I really enjoyed this book. I did have a hard time with all the faery names–trying to work out pronunciations in my head and such (and she thankfully has a guide on her site), but that didn’t make the book any less good.

I also FINALLY read Rainbow Party and while I can understand why some people were like “whut” over it, I think the book handled the matter in a very responsible and well-written way. Other books I recently read include Meg Cabot’s Airhead and April Henry’s Shock Point, which is actually a re-read because I enjoyed it so much the first time around.

My allergies haven’t been that nice to me. I have a hard time sleeping because of all the gunk in my throat, or the itchiness. This was probably not the smartest time to try wearing contacts again, seeing as my eyes get itchy and tired too. I’m constantly sniffling and clearing my throat these days.

And here is something interesting I’ve found out. Some groceries at Target are a lot cheaper than the grocery store, even my beloved Strack & Van Til! What a nice, pleasant surprise. Although this particular Target is SCARILY crowded, and yesterday, I remembered WHY I hate driving in Chicago. Seriously, UPS trucks and random SUVs that park and take up whole lanes REALLY irritate me. I usually end up behind those idiots and I can’t get around them because everyone behind me sees that I’m stuck and they just jut on out, thus keeping ME from getting around those losers. I also hate that it takes 25 minutes to go four miles because of all the stupid traffic lights. This city is NOT driver friendly at all. Especially not to people with Ohio license plates. :(

I didn’t get a lot of normal groceries yesterday, just snacks/junk mostly. And cereal. Edy’s Dibs were on sale, two for $5. Trix was $2. Doritos were two for $5. I also got us some treats. Reese’s miniatures and Pop Tarts. Yeah, not the most healthy of foods, but I wanted them. Ha.

Anyway, I want to go relax a bit before Adam gets back from the farmer’s market. ‘Til next time!

(Originally published at Anywhere Is…)

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