Sunday, January 31, 2010

An Update on my Scrapbooking... did you know I scrapbook?

Did I mention that I'm a scrapbooker?

Well, I don't know if I can say that, seeing as I have not created a scrapbooking page in at least six months. But I've got a ton of pictures printed, tons of paper and embellishments, plus a room in the new townhouse that I call my "craft room" which houses all of my beloved Hobby Lobby finds plus a television, which gets the most use as of late.

In any case, Husband found me a great way to organize my crafting supplies and after we cleared out the Christmas tree and all the associated boxes from the room, I decided it was high time to continue my honeymoon scrapbook.

Yes, I realize that this April will mark our third anniversary and that this should have been done MUCH earlier, but honestly, we've been busy! And... I needed inspiration... and a place to set up... and the right paper... OK, I really don't have an excuse. My 101 in 1001 list has pushed me to start up again!

Let's just show you the pictures of what I've done so far... please don't laugh!

So we went to Paris and this was us on the outbound flight.

This was the statue of Moliere near our hotel.
Our Hotel de Moliere was where the playwright held his rehearsals in the 18th century. That's basically what the journal entry says.

We had a great view!

We were near the Opera and the Lourve.

Paris has such amazing buildings.

We had to take a picture of the St Michael statue - after Husband's namesake.

The must-have photo at the Eiffel Tower. The photo on the left is from the second observation deck.

And my latest creation...
This was our trip to Notre Dame... I absolutely LOVE the picture of the gargoyle we got from the top observation level. The quote says "This world is but a canvas to our imagination."

Any thoughts or suggestions? I'm just getting started with the whole scrapbooking thing and I don't want to start on my wedding book until I've got some practice under my belt!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet

From my 101 in 1001 days list, I got to take home some flowers from my event on Wednesday evenings. Something about fresh flowers in the house just makes me happy.

White hydrangeas and creamy roses with a few pears thrown in for good measure. It was a great centerpiece for the event!

I finally have a grown up purse... but nothing to wear with it!

Remember when I won that amazing perfume by Reese Witherspoon? Well, that same week I had entered another giveaway! I know, I can't even believe my luck.

Thanks for What's Haute Magazine and Aspinal of London, I'm the proud owner of a new Tassel Tote Bag in Chocolate French calf leather. And believe me, this bag is the most amazing thing I've ever seen!
It even came in it's own protective bag!

And to give you an idea of its size, I took Husband's new 12 inch laptop and slipped it in and it had plenty of room! I think this will become my new work/big meeting bag, because it can hold a small notebook for notes, and maybe even a file or two.

But honestly, I'm afraid to use it - it's expensive and gorgeous and wonderful and I don't want to scratch it or do anything to hurt it! I need to get over that.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

There is a Time for Everything

Today was a rough day.

After the most amazing night at Barrister Ball [post forthcoming as soon as I get more pictures!], I had errands to run today and then a memorial service to attend.

While we were on vacation at Disneyworld, I got word that a former colleague of mine had passed away. He was quite young, only 41, so everyone was rather shocked.

I worked with Brad when I interned at the Repertory Theatre while I was a senior in college. I saw him quite a bit going to see shows over the next few years and he always had a smile on his face and was just happy to be in the theatre.

Today's memorial service had memories from friends and co-workers plus a video at the end from a storytelling event at SXSW Festival last year. He told the story of "His Second Time" - when he saw a professional theatrical performance by himself in New York and it made him want to become a theatre professional.

As wonderful as the service was, it was something else that got my attention. The service was held at the theatre where Brad worked and the set for their current show was still up. The set consisted of a fake proscenium arch with some balconies constructed above the stage. I'm not familiar with the show but I guess actors must have to use these balconies because there were chairs there... and they had set the lights up just right that a spotlight illuminated the balcony to the right. There was a tie draped over the chair and a reserved sign on the chair. It took me a moment to realize it was Brad's favorite Christmas tie - he always wore crazy and bright ties to almost any theatre performance.

When I saw that, I almost lost it. I've ALWAYS been a crier - doesn't matter if it's a sappy commercial or just some random thought. I tend to cry at the drop of a hat. But the sight of Brad's tie on that chair lit by a spot on the stage that he loved to promote was just too much.

Throughout the service, I kept thinking about the Ecclesiastes verse that you usually hear at most Christian funerals:

Ecclesiastes 3

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

Even though we can reflect on verses like this, I'm not sure it makes it easier to handle the passing of a dear friend.

Barrister Ball or, as they like to say, Law School Prom

We had the pleasure of attending Law School Prom over the weekend.

I really love any excuse to get dressed up and eat a fancy meal and then dance ALL night. The event was at a swanky hotel here in St. Louis known for their good food and amazing service. Needless to say, we were not disappointed!

We were treated to cocktails and appetizers followed by a three-course meal. Being the event planner I am, I guessed the meal before we were served - and got two out of three dead on! The problem was the dessert. I called cheesecake but we ended up with a fancy version of a twinkie and a ding dong! Not kidding, it was a lemon pound cake with raspberry sauce or a chocolate mud pie thing with whip cream. We just laughed about it, but they were actually pretty good.

Later in the evening, a friend of Husband's ordered a few bottles of champagne for the table [who knew that you could even DO that at an event like this?!] so combined with the four-hour open bar, we had a pretty good time.

Needless to say that my husband was adorable and all his friends are just so much fun.

We were seated with many of his law school friends, a few that I knew and a few that were dying to meet me. I felt so loved! With my crazy schedule in the last few months, I wasn't able to go out with his group as much as I would have liked and so hadn't met some of the regulars. They call themselves the "D-Listers" - named after their section letter.

There are some other unflattering pictures of me dancing but I don't think I'll show them here. I'll leave this post with just a rosy memory of the evening of drinks, dinner and dancing.

Can't wait until next year!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The actors are running around onstage and I just don't get it

We are about three weeks into rehearsal for Noises Off at CCT here in St. Louis. Things are going well even though I've only attended about a week's worth of rehearsals. With the vacation and then my major cold and ear infection, I just wasn't able to be involved earlier.

As an assistant stage manager, I'm at every single rehearsal and basically watching. As the director gives the actors their blocking, I'm responsible for writing it down, step by step. With around ten actors onstage at any given time, I'm finding it quite difficult to keep track of them all! And since this is a farce, there is a lot of running back and forth and interacting with the other actors, dealing with props, plus trying to put in the physical comedy bits that the script asks for.

Tonight it just hit me, sitting there watching them run around, fall down (and not always when called for in the script), and almost kill themselves - this is going to be a CRAZY show. I'll be backstage for most of the time and I'm just praying that everything goes ok.

Because - seriously - SO many things can go wrong, I can't even begin to imagine how as assistant stage manager I could fix things from backstage.

I'm really glad we have two months before we open - if at the very least, for me to realize where they need to be when!!!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Monday Round Up

I participated in my first Finish it Friday which is hosted by Aby @ Creative Organizing.

Let's see how I did:
  1. Clear the kitchen table of missed placed items so we could actually eat there if we wanted to. DONE! I even cleaned up the kitchen so we can cook things in there and see the counters. So it's all good!
  2. Take down Christmas decorations DONE! Sort of... everything is in its box and the tree is unplugged and half disassembled. Does that count as done?
  3. Laundry – I think we’re on the last pair of clean underwear. In process - won't get done with everything but it's definitely a step in the right direction!
  4. Pick up my newly fixed car from the dealership Post forthcoming but we are a two car family again!
  5. Figure out how to use my new Cricut machine!!! Because I knew I would have to write this post, I spent the afternoon with my new toy. Oh boy I knew I would love it, but I had no idea how much! It's going to make my scrapbook pages look so awesome!
  6. Put away/find homes for all the lovely new Christmas presents we received from our generous parents. Some of this got done, but the rest will have to wait for another day.
  7. Change the sheets in the master and guest bedroom to hopefully prevent us from getting sick AGAIN. Since all of the laundry didn't get done, this will have to wait until tomorrow.
Over all, I think I was pretty darn productive this weekend!

A winner? I never win things!

With all of those giveaways flying around in December, I decided to throw my hat in the ring and see what happens.

And look what came from the FedEx man today–

I won a bottle of In Bloom autographed by Reese Witherspoon from The Fashionable Housewife! Hey thanks, Sarah!

It’s a great scent - according to the box:

"Sensual and elegant, it entices the senses with gardenia blossoms and lush florals, enveloped in amber wood and peach tea leaves."
Which is quite true. The gardenia is just SO yummy!

This is the perfect scent to wear for Huband's upcoming Barrister Ball! So perfect timing, I think!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

The Saturn Saga

... is over. After 5 batteries in three years, we have a solution.

Remember a few weeks ago when we had a really bad day and then a few days later an even worse day? All because of that wonderful invention called a car that allows me to get from here to there.

Well, the situation has finally resolved itself - after a few hundred dollars, that is.

Where we last left the Saturn, the mechanic has located the problem in a battery cable that was corroded on the inside and thereby killing the battery. So we came up with a back up plan (borrow a car from a family member if the car dies again, and save up money now in order to purchase a new car in the future). But it turns out we didn't need the plan!

With plans in place, we left for Christmas and New Year's and then proceeded to come down with a horrible cold that knocked both of us out of commission for a whole week. Come last Thursday, I finally needed my car and not share with Husband so I went out to start the car. SURPRISE! It doesn't start.

After another AAA service call and another new battery, Husband and I decided to drive the Saturn straight to the dealership and leave it with them to divine the problem with my dear car. I explained the latest problem to John, our service tech.

Me: "So the AAA came today and tried to jump the car, and it somehow started with a big jump. But when he couldn't figure out why the brand new battery died, he decided to dig deeper. The battery tested fine when it was out of the car, but the minute you attach it to the coupe's battery cable, suddenly the battery reads at half power. How can that be?"

John the Saturn tech: "Um... I have no idea. I've never heard of this problem."

Me: "So I'm special. I get that. But I'm leaving it here until you guys can figure it out!"

John the Saturn tech: "Ok... I'll call you when we have an answer!"

I don't think it's good when you confuse the mechanic. I mean, aren't they supposed to have seen everything about cars?

In any case, the mechanics at Saturn finally got to the bottom of it. I have no idea how they did it, but they did! I finally have my car back! Believe it or not, the broken power locks [that haven't worked in eight months] somehow have been constantly firing and draining the electrical power from the battery. They fired and fired and fired all day and all night and ended up killing every single battery that was placed in the car.

I almost want to buy the mechanics and John the customer service tech something nice. Because they gave me my car back! Wow. :) I'm a happy camper with a car that doesn't die AND has its power locks working again!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

New Year's Celebration in Disneyworld

I was up for 23 hours straight while we traveled to Florida and spent New Year’s Eve in the Magic Kingdom. It is absolutely my favorite place to be on that night of the year. They say “it’s magical” because it truly is. :)

This year made us a huge caravan of family members that went with us to the House of the Mouse. My FIL and MIL went down with my brother-in-law and his girlfriend a few days before NYE. On our plane that Thursday was myself and Husband, plus his grandmother. We also helped his cousin and her husband plus three kids on the way down. It’s much easier when you have a higher adult-to-child ratio. Let’s just say that EVERYONE on that plane knew that my three-year-old godson was VERY.EXCITED. to get to Disneyworld. :) It was actually pretty cute.

When we got to Florida, we met up with Husband’s uncle, Uncle's son and son’s best friend, plus the cousin and fiancee who live in Orlando [where we’re headed back for the wedding in May! Yay!].

I believe the final total was 17 for dinner at Liberty Tree Tavern before the fireworks. It was insane – but so much fun!

This is my Tea Cups buddy, Scrappy. And those are my ears. :)

My FIL holding Moose, our godson. He had that look on his face the whole week.

The Magical Express bus dropped us off at the Animal Kingdom Villas, our DVC home base.

The in-laws purchased their DVC membership last year on vacation and it’s such a great thing! This was the first time we stayed on points and I really enjoyed the resort. Our rooms were in the Jamba House, so it gave us the feel of a bigger resort but also all the benefits of the DVC home base as well.

Some rooms look out on the savannah - with giraffes and all kinds of other animals!

We always hit up the Magic Kingdom as the first (and usually the last) thing we do at Disney. We ride all of our favorites, have a Mickey’s ice cream bar, and wait for midnight.

This year we all met up in front of Space Mountain in Tomorrowland and made sure we had a good view of the castle. It was the PERFECT place – after ten minutes of fireworks before midnight, the countdown began and then the sky all around us just exploded into fireworks and lights. They really do it right!

We sent the rest of the family home while we met up with Husband’s friend from grade school and his family who happened to be there for New Year’s as well. The six of us closed down the Kingdom that night – which led us up to 23 hours without sleep!

Here are some other fun photos from the rest of the trip:

Gotta love the Hidden Mickeys the cast members put EVERYWHERE.

In four trips, I had never been on Thunder Mountain. We fixed that on this trip.

Chip and Dale are Scrappy's favorite ... other than princeses, that is.

I love the details outside of the Muppets ride in Hollywood Studios.

I really don't know what's going on here - but that's Meemaw in BIL's hat. Hmm.

Brother’s Official First Drink (well, first legal one, anyway)

I can’t believe my little brother is 21. I guess you always think of your siblings as younger than you and that even though you’re growing older, they will always stay that young.
Over the Christmas trip to Fort Worth, Husband and I were able to fete my brother in style. Since his friends in town weren’t exactly of age yet, it was up to the family to show him a good time!
We started off at Piranha’s – the best sushi in Texas. We LOVE this place.

Husband doesn’t exactly like raw fish so he had spring rolls – but they were really FANCY spring rolls. Look how pretty the plate is!

Since I’m not good at ordering at these places, my brother picked a bunch of rolls of the list and then asked the waiter for his suggestions. This is what we got!

We ate raw fish than one should really ever eat before massive amounts of drinking, but a few hours later it was midnight. Brother had wanted sake for his first drink and the waiter brought it by just in time.

He definitely seemed to enjoy it! Mom and the rest of had sips too, but I didn’t enjoy that much. Tasted like dirty feet to me [and don’t ask me how I know how that tastes! :)]!

Once the first drink was done, we said goodbye to the parents and wandered around Sundance Square in downtown Fort Worth. There are so many bars like the Flying Saucer and the Library, both of which we had drinks at. Brother got some advice from his big sister about how to order at a busy bar and Husband just laughed at the two of us getting drunk together.

I think he looks like he had a good time, don’t you?

Friday, January 15, 2010

Finish It Friday

We have a three day weekend and I am determined to finish a few things that have been absolutely LINGERING around the townhouse:

  1. Clear the kitchen table of missed placed items so we could actually eat there if we wanted to.
  2. Take down Christmas decorations [a vacation over Christmas and New Year’s, plus a sickness immediately after prevented this happening way earlier]
  3. Laundry – I think we’re on the last pair of clean underwear.
  4. Pick up my newly fixed car from the dealership
  5. Figure out how to use my new Cricut machine!!!
  6. Put away/find homes for all the lovely new Christmas presents we received from our generous parents.
  7. Change the sheets in the master and guest bedroom to hopefully prevent us from getting sick AGAIN.

We’ll see how that goes!