Thursday, June 26, 2008

Happy Birthday, Casey!!!

Happy, Happy Birthday to my dear cousin, Casey today!!!

Although we don't see each other all that often, we have a great time together! I hope your day is very special, Casey!! I can't wait until the next time we can dance! :-)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Pardon the interruption folks...

As you can see, I just made a fun change to the blog! It still wasn't being all that creative since I got this design from this blogspot thanks to my friend, Melissa!! Now, obviously the header doesn't go with the rest of the design so I'll be working on that (or maybe I can sweet talk my dear friend into helping me!). Hopefully I'll get that done tomorrow. So, for now, sorry, but you'll have to look at this clashing mess!! :-)

By the way, I am back on the exercise bandwagon!! I've started walking with my neighbor, Jenny, on Monday and Wednesday nights right after work; I get up and do 20 minutes on the elliptical each morning; and I walked over three miles at lunch on Monday and Tuesday (a meeting today, lunch with friends tomorrow...maybe Friday, depending on the heat!). I'm pretty proud of myself. Walking in the evening is nice because Jenny is a power walker and it's a good time to get to know her better (they just moved in last fall). My friend, Heather, is coming up tonight as she has an early flight in the morning to go to Florida to visit her sister-in-law and new nephew!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Finally an update...I know!

(WARNING -- this is a long post with lots of pictures!!)

The computer is still crashed at home so I am doing this from work (shhhh....). Hopefully we'll get it fixed or get a new one ASAP! Luckily Jason has a laptop from work that he can bring home so I still have some access.

Our vacation was great!! We spent four days in Colorado with our friends (the Brang's). The first day was rainy so we just hung out at their house catching up. On Friday, the girls went shopping & had gelato (yummy!!) while the guys rode the motorcycles in the mountains. We rented a motorcycle for Saturday (thanks Todd!!) and had a great ride with MB & Bill and Todd & Jenny. Now I can see why there were so many people on bikes - it will be hard to ride in boring Illinois after going thru the mountains. We also drove through Windsor, CO which had just been hit with the F3 tornado just two weeks prior. It was amazing to see houses down to the ground just streets over from houses that had hardly any damage. Luckily, most people were at work and kids were in school or at daycare when it came through.After leaving Colorado, we went to San Francisco where we met up with my parents. On Monday, we did a city tour and then the Alcatraz night tour. The Alcatraz tour was really neat, and it was fun to ride on the boat seeing San Fran all lit up at night. We spent most of the day walking around on Tuesday - past Lombard Street, to Union Square, China Town, and North Beach, then back to our hotel in Fisherman's Wharf. Mom and I biked the Golden Gate Bridge on Wednesday and hung out in Sausalito for a little while. On Thursday, we just walked around Fisherman's Wharf. We slept in and took a nap every day!! I think we could have done one less day in San Fran, but oh well, you never know until you go.There are signs like this all over town - basically where the rich have made it known that they don't want tour groups coming by their houses!
Cable car turnaround at Powell & Hyde Streets...yep, the guys physically turn the car around!
My name in Chinese!!
She was making fortune cookies!
Yummy caramel sundae at Ghirardelli!On Friday, we picked up the rental car and drove to Miur Woods National Monument. Mom wanted to see the redwoods, but the guys didn't want to pay for a tour so we decided to drive it (it's only about a 1/2 hour away). After Muir Woods, we headed toward Sacramento with a stop at the Jelly Belly factory. They give free tours and samples! YUMMY! The tour was nice and then we had to buy some bags of Belly Flops (irregular Jelly Bellys).
We got to Sacramento late in the afternoon, checked into the hotel and then headed over to Jarrod's parent's house. We had a nice cookout and met some of Jarrod's friends - Desiree, Jarrett, Sara, Nick, and Sean. On Saturday, we toured Old Sacramento and then went to Marge & Clark's (friend's of Jarrod's parents) to get ready for the party. It was a beautiful day - about 40 people showed up for the party including a couple from Hawaii (Jarrod's cousin) and a family from Oregon (another cousin & aunt) that weren't able to make it back to Illinois in March.
On Sunday, we piled into Jarrod's mom's Suburban (except mom and dad who rode with Marge & Clark) and drove to Reno and Lake Tahoe. We stopped at the Atlantis in Reno for lunch...Michelle put $20 in the slot machine before we got in line to eat and ended up winning $500!!!! After lunch, we got back in the cars and headed to Lake Tahoe....what a sight!! It was beautiful! It reminded me so much of northern Wisconsin and Colorado! This is definitely a place I would love to come back to. They have campgrounds, cabin rentals, hotels, etc. right along the lake with a beautiful view of the snow-capped hills in the background!
We flew home on Monday night; actually arriving in Illinois on Tuesday. I spent the day doing laundry, going through the mail, reading newspapers, and napping, of course! It was back to work on Wednesday for both of us.

This past weekend was great, too! We had friends over on Saturday night for swimming and dinner (yes, the pool is finally ready!). Then, on Sunday, I went to church while Jason did the MDA ride with a friend, we met my sister and Jarrod for lunch (they were on their way home from a wedding), and then Jason's sister came over with Kali & Caden to swim. Caden wasn't too sure about the water - it was cooler than his bath water and so much bigger! I think the more he's around it, the more he'll like it. Caden is getting so big! Since the last time we saw him, he has gotten four more teeth and is crawling!!! He'll be a year old in just a few short weeks. I'm not sure if he'll be walking by then or not, but he does really well when you hold his hands. And, he's getting pretty brave to let go of one hand to reach for other things. He is growing up so quick!!

A full week of work this week...that's been a while. Jason goes on his annual "canoe" trip with the boys this weekend. I have to work Friday night and am not sure what I'll do the rest of the weekend.

There...there's my post! Until next time...

Sunday, June 1, 2008

It's time to say goodbye...

Not that this is anything unusual in Bloomington-Normal or for our neighborhood, but we have two families moving away this summer. State Farm Insurance is one of the main reasons for all the movement in town - if you don't know, their corporate headquarters are here so people tend to move into town and then out and sometimes back! Last night, we had a party for the Dage and Colvert families. I believe they have both been here about a year and a half. The Dage's are moving to Indiana and the Colvert's are moving home to Nebraska. We know that we could see the Dage's again here in B/N, but I guess we'll have to make a road trip to see the Colvert's! Here are a few pictures from the party!!The whole crew!

The girls!!
(Back row: me, Tisha, Heather, Sarie, Amena, Kelly;
Front row: Nicole, Cara, Julie, Becky, Melanie)
Dage's & Colvert's
(They got a frame for the picture above, and we signed the matte.)

The Dage's -- Cory, Nicole, Kaitlin, Courtney, & Noah

(part of) The Colvert's - Chad & Cara (Taylor and Nicholas were too busy playing!!)

We'll miss you all!!!