Thursday, August 31, 2006

Tragedy Strikes Yet Again

We've got to be cursed or something. There's no logical explanation for why these things keep happening to us. Something evil lives in that room...

Last night I had the misfortune to discover that Larry had died. No warning, no sickness. Just walk into the room and see him sprawled in front of his house. Our best guess at this point is that he choked on a chunk of honey stick treat. Truly horrific way to go if you ask me and I'm feeling just awful about it for a couple reasons: 1) I gave him the treat. 2) I was probably in the other room reading while he was dying. Not that there was anything I could have done to stop it... I don't think the Heimlich would go over to well on a guinea pig. It's just so terrible.

Right now our main concern is Mo. He must have been right there, watching his friend struggle and die. That's got to leave a mark and it's not like there's therapy for your pet. Even though they had their problems when they lived in the same cage, they seemed to like each other. They would squeak to each other. They'd sit in their cages and look at each other. They'd poke their noses out at each other. I don't want Mo to be depressed and lonely now that Larry is gone. Perhaps I'm personifying the guinea pigs more than is realistic, but I don't want this to turn into a gay, guinea pig version of "Romeo & Juliet." He seems to be ok right now. He's still eating and emerging from his house every once in a while. We're just not sure if we want to get another one. Adam says we should. I'm not convinced yet. We'll see what the weekend brings.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Dress Site Updated

I stopped over at Bridal Event this evening so the dress website has been updated with a few more dress choices. Fun stuff... I have one more place to check out yet.

Choices, choices

There are so many choices to make when planning a wedding. Right now my focus has turned to dresses. I want to have the attendant’s dress picked out by the end of September so I can get the flowers and candles going. I am on hold with those items since I need a color swatch from the dresses to match things up. I plan to get my dress done in early November when my mom is here for a visit. Adam’s on his own for the men’s clothing, but he’s pretty much decided on the colors and is just waiting to see where he wants to go for them.

With that kind of thing pretty much under control I have started thinking about honeymoon options. Originally Adam had suggested a cruise but he later changed his mind and rooted more for a European trip of some kind. I had at one point suggested The Grand Canyon but he shot that one down. I was all gung-ho for a European trip as well until I started really thinking about it. Let me try and organize my thoughts here:

Choice 1: Trip to Europe
I’d love to go to France again and see other countries in the vicinity (Germany, Italy, etc.) My main apprehension now is that a honeymoon might not be the right time to do this kind of trip. Honeymoons are supposed to be relaxing times to spend with the person you love. You unwind from the craziness that weddings tend to be and you just want to spend as much time doing nothing as you can. Europe is not really conducive to being relaxing and you’re more likely to run around trying to see everything than spend time doing nothing. It would be a waste to fly all the way over there and then spend the whole time in a hotel. Even with a great travel agent there are so many opportunities for things to go wrong. The food is very different, the people are very different, and I think there may be too many chances for us to get completely pissed at each other. Not a good way to spend our honeymoon. Still, it has been a few years since I’ve been to France…

Choice 2: Alaskan Cruise
We had discussed this previously. He’s never been on an Alaskan cruise and I’ve never been on a cruise period. My mom and sister went on one this past spring and they loved it. I’d like to try one out and a honeymoon seems like it might be the perfect time. Once you get on the ship you’re basically taken care of for a week. No running around, no strange food, no potentially confusing customs. You’ve got a lovely room to hole up in. There are ports of call you can go explore if you want. If not, there’s still that lovely room waiting for you. Romantic spas, breath-taking views. As talented as we are, I think there’d be fewer opportunities to pick fights when things are basically taken care of and there’s no risk of getting lost. Of course people always say you eat too much on a cruise. It’s also potentially more expensive than a trip to Europe, depending on what kind of room you get and what is all included.

I think you can tell which way I’m leaning. To me it just makes more sense to do something relaxing and mindless. I haven’t really talked to Adam about this yet. I’m just kicking ideas around. I do know that there are four different cruises that go Seattle roundtrip leaving the 19th though… :) Perhaps some outside input would help?

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Camping 2006 Attempt #3

Sorry for the major gap in blogland. I had a rough week.

Anyway, for our final camping trip we got a site down at Rocky Arbor State Park in Wisconsin Dells. We also invited Catherine and Tony along for the ride. You'll notice I titled this post a camping "attempt" and I think it's safe to say that we completely failed. Hold on folks, this is going to be a long post.

Adam woke up on Friday morning sick. Luckily he had taken the entire day off anyway so while I got up and went to work, he spent the morning throwing up, etc. This meant we left about an hour and a half later than we'd planned. We should have taken this as a sign that we weren't meant to go. *sigh* Anywho, we get to the campground, check in, and drive to our campsite. Which is the size of a shoebox. Seriously, when Adam backed the Santa Fe off the road the back of the car was over the camp pad. There was a drop-off at the back of the camp pad and no picnic table. There is no way two tents and two cars were ever going to fit there. So we called down to the office and asked if there were any other sites open for the weekend. Of course not. So Adam called Reserve America and talked to a lady there. There was basically nothing to be done. So I called Catherine up and told them the situation. They weren't sure they wanted to come up if we weren't camping. We did still have a boat reserved for Saturday though and we didn't want to lose the money on that by leaving. So we went back down to the office to see what could be done. Luckily another site had cancelled so we could have that one. Unfortunately it was about the same size as the first one. We decided the only thing to be done was to get a hotel room and enjoy the night that way. Tony was harder to convince. Eventually everything got arranged and we ended up at a Comfort Inn and they ended up at a Motel 6 across town. We met for dinner at Marley's, a caribbean inspired restuarant, and then went back to our hotel for a while. We played Snorta, a game where players try to confuse each other with animal sounds. It was actually pretty fun and I even won both times.

**Off topic** I've noticed that when I play games without my sister, I tend to win. When she's playing, I haven't got a chance. Odd... **end off topic**

We then called it a night and agreed to meet up in the morning at the boat launch.

The next morning we got the boat, loaded everything, and then waited an hour for Catherine and Tony to get there. They got lost... After we left the docks, we cruised around for a while on Lake Delton.

Adam fished

we watched the Tommy Bartlett Show from the water, we went swimming, grilled some food. It was a great day to be out on the lake. The sun came out for a while, it was a good temperature. Adam even fed the ducks:

We had the boat until 7:30, but we decided to call it a day early so we could go to dinner before we both headed back to our respective homes. The frosting to our great day was when we headed back to the docks and totally took the biminy top off going under a bridge. Nice... They should have signs to warn you it's not high enough or something. Oh well. We bought ourselves a nice, bent piece of metal. Woo. After unloading the boat and getting into normal clothing we went to Moosejaw for dinner. And some pictures:

We then parted ways and headed back home.

Where I proceeded to be sick for the entire week.


So, camping this season is over. We have two dates reserved up at Peninsula State Park for next year though. We know they're good (and big enough) so hopefully they'll work out better than our three attempts this year did.


Take a look at this newly created webpage for the current candidates in the dress race. It includes both attendants and my dress choices. I won't say which are my favorites yet. I want other peoples' opinions. Leave comments!!!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Happy One Year Until We're Married Day!

Yup, one year from now I'll be married... and probably a little tipsy. Heh. It's a strange thought.

In other news, Adam gave Mo a haircut the other day. His hair was just getting out of control. When he emerged from his igloo, he looked like he had been electrocuted. It was crazy. Now he looks so much smaller since the majority of his bigness was his hair. He left his mohawk alone so he's still Mo. Just a lot less hairy. It will grow back.

The two guinea pigs seem a lot happier now that we separated them. Larry's nose has healed nicely and Mo's ear is back to normal. All the other guys are doing just fine as well. Gus and Barry really go at their wheels all night long and Howie pops up from a random spot in his cage every once in a while. Everyone appears to be healthy.

Friday, August 11, 2006

What's the World Coming to?

This shocked me. I'm not sure if I ever knew him personally (his obit says he was a member over at 1st Pres), but I know his son, Matt. It's just terrible when things like this happen to people you know. Ok, yes, it's equally as horrible when they happen to complete strangers. It just seems so much more real when it's someone you know.

The same thing happened a few years back when the sister of one of my friends from elementary school suffocated her newborn baby girl after she gave birth at work. I was shocked. Granted, I hadn't had any contact with either of them in years, but it just seemed unbelievable that someone could do that. Especially someone I know. My friends are friends with her boyfriend and the whole situation was just unreal. The drama continues still today with her attempts to get a new trial.

I just wonder what prompts this kind of madness?

Thursday, August 10, 2006

A Majorly Oversharing Blog Rant

All day today I've had a stupid song from Bye Bye Birdie running through my head.

"How lovely to be a woman,
The wait was well worth while;
How lovely to wear mascara
And smile a woman's smile.
How lovely to have a figure,
That's round instead of flat;
Whenever you hear boys whistle,
You're what they're whistling at."

Blech! Boys never whistled at me. Barked, maybe mooed, but whistled? Never.

Anyway, I've determined either the person who wrote this piece of crap must have been doing way too many drugs (it was the 60's afterall) or it must have been written by a man.

Hey, whadd'ya know. Lyrics by Lee Adams. Figures.

In any case, you might be wondering why this particular song is my mental soundtrack for the day. The answer should be obvious. Obviously it's not so great to be a woman like me right now.

I can sing the praises of Seasonale all day long. It's truly a great thing to go for months without the hassle of womandom. But when it comes, it comes with a vengence. I don't know if it's just me (I've always had a pretty rough time in this area) but it just seems kind of ridiculous sometimes. I'd like to add a couple verses to the aforementioned song, detailing the not-so-nice details of being a woman. They forgot to mention the week-long entire body ache. And the craving for salt even though you know if you eat it you'll retain water like Spongebob. I won't even go into the more obvious unpleasantries. Ugh. Menopause will not come soon enough in my opinion.

I was so pissed when I "became a woman" at the (relatively) young age of 12. It's been a monthly hell ever since. I actually had to stay home from school quite a few times because I could not move due to blinding cramping. I know I scared my dad at least once because of this. I also threw up in science class once because of it (on my birthday to boot!) It's just a miserable part of life. But this is why I'm so happy to avoid it 2 out of 3 months. Supposedly this Seasonale stuff is supposed to make it lighter as well but I'd beg to differ.

Anyways, I'll welcome the break that comes with pregnancy and I'll be so happy when the hot flashes I get are because I'm "going through the change." I do find it interesting how one's attitude towards this changes though. I was never really looking forward to it, but I'll tell you there were some times I was so happy to see it.

With that oversharing, I'll end this entire post of oversharing. Chalk it up to PMS...

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Brat Days

***Warning: Lots of pictures!!***

We headed down to Sheboygan for Brat Days 2006 on Friday. We stopped at Cruiser's for lunch and struggled through the construction on hwy 28. After a stop at the GameStop store in the Target/Home Depot shopping center we checked into our hotel at the La Quinta. When Adam discovered the refurbished PS2 he bought didn't work we drove across town again, taking cty A this time to avoid the mess. We then hung out at the hotel until my dad and Cheryl came and picked us up for dinner. They took us out to The Bull, the golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus, so Adam was happy. The food was wonderful and the view was great too:

We had a picture of Adam in front of the entrance, but he went delete happy later on in the evening and accidentally deleted that one. Oops...

We headed back to the hotel, mentally regrouped, and headed down to Kiwanis park for the Firehouse concert. We actually parked relatively close to the park. We only had to walk 3 blocks or so. We picked a spot on the second tier of the hill, far enough from the stage to avoid any hoopla and retain our full hearing. Therefore the pictures are kind of blurry and psychadelic. I think Adam was kind of bored (and he had a headache) but I enjoyed the concert. They played a lot of newer stuff from albums I wasn't altogether familiar with, but they also played some classics from their earlier albums.

We then packed our chairs up and headed back to the hotel. It was a rough night, but we made it through. We got up early Saturday and headed to the free breakfast in the lobby. After we checked out we drove to West Side Bakery for a bit of nostalgic donut goodness and then headed back to Kiwanis. We got there just after 9am and staked our claim on the benches in front of the Johnsonville Big Grill truck. We sat about 5 benches from the front. Great seats if you ask me. Of course, the competition wasn't due to start until 11 so we had some time to kill. We got to listen to the announcer practice his speeches and yell at the music person who kept missing her cues. Her name was Kate. :) We also got to hear the crew's pep talk. We saw the two top contenders (Takeru Kobayashi and Sonya Thomas) when they arrived at the park after the parade. The park filled up pretty quickly after about 10:30 and there was a decent sized crowd. At least ESPN thought so. The competition was originally supposed to be done live to tape and then aired (edited for commercials, etc.) at 3. Apparently the people at ESPN like the energy of the crowd so well they decided to just go live. It was interesting. They had to do the entrances of the contestants 3 times.

I'm getting ahead of myself. The amateur contest was first. 16 local guys shoving brats into their faces. One guy barfed. A lot. Other than that it was relatively refined. The winner ate 14 total. The stage was then cleaned up and prepped for the professional contest. After a lot of hoopla and the announcer's speeches (which we had already heard once), the contestants all got up on stage. Then it was announced that ESPN wanted to air it live so they had to start over. They got three of the guys back up on stage and then had to send them back off and start over because they hadn't gone on air yet. *sigh* Finally they got everyone back up on stage and started the competition. It was disgusting, yet exhilarating. The world record set last year by Sonya Thomas was smashed in less than 5 minutes. Kobayashi, this tiny Japanese guy, plowed through 58 brats in 10 minutes. It was amazing. He lifted his shirt up at the end of the competition and you could still see his abs... this guy is ripped... Anywho, he won, the crowd went wild, and we went to seek out shade and water. It was incredibly hot and I got totally sunburned.

I can't find any video of the contest anywhere that shows us. There's nothing on the ESPN website, although the contest made #10 on their top ten moments on SC this morning. There's a two-minute (low quality) clip on YouTube, but that's about all I can find so far. If I find anything else, I'll post it. Trust us, we were there. :)


The amateurs

The stumf fiddle battle to the death (don't ask... it's a Sheboygan thing...)

Sonya "The Black Widow" Thomas

The pros

My sunburn

Our brat "thunder sticks"

There are more pictures on my Photobucket site.