Archive for May, 2008

FINALLY…!

Okay…so it’s been 14 + days (I think…I’ve sorta lost track...) since I have posted anything on here. The reason (or maybe I should say excuse…) is that I really don’t have a good one. BUT…the fact that I have played the role of nurse, girlfriend, sister, daughter, party planner, maid of honor, listener, hostess, organizer, prayer partner, photographer, shopper, mall scavenger hunter, jogger…and a half a dozen other titles that I can’t think of right now…should count for something! 😉

These last two weeks have been incredibly busy but also exceedingly fun…I love the always-something-to-do days, especially when it involves a social atmosphere. 

Last week sometime…no, one and a half weeks ago, I think it was Wednesday evening, a couple girlfriends and I got together in Meade and watched some tv and hung out in the hot tub! It was an evening of laughter, giggles, chatting, talking about guys…(and you know, OTHER things that only girls talk about…!) bluetoothing songs to each other’s cells, and snacking on frosted animal crackers and milk shakes!  The hot tub felt incredibly…well, hot! But then, we’d get out and cool off in the midnight breeze, hop back in to warm up, then out again…and you get the idea. (I’d say we did that about 20 times before calling it a night!)

Friday (not yesterday…a week ago), Serena, Krissa, and I all went to Wichita for…Mary’s big day…called her WEDDING! We enjoyed a bridal luncheon with the bridal party and some others at the Apple House in Whitewater, Kansas. From there, the bridesmaids and bride (and my sisters) changed into some more casual clothes, piled into two cars and unloaded at Town East in Wichita. We were ready for some girl-only-fun-and-giggle-time! The mall was the perfect place for a scavenger hunt…of sorts. Everyone was on the hunt for a gift for someone else…a gift that had to meet some requirements. Under $10, started with certain letters, related to the wedding, and was creative, exotic, odd or unusual, tasty, smelly, embarrassing, and just plain fun! The rehearsal was that evening followed by a pizza and pop supper (along with some other delightful dishes including some dessert!). We, the bridal party, put together a mad lib soga about Arlen and Mary’s life together after marriage…it turned out to be quite hilarious and kept everybody laughing. I thoroughly enjoyed hanging out with the soon-to-be bride and groom that evening as well as getting to know others in the wedding party. Before retiring for some zzzz that night at the Holiday Inn Express in El Dorado, Mary, my sisters and I relaxed a while in the jacuzzi. We must have all been tired, or somebody put something in our drinks at the rehearsal dinner, because everything seemed funny even if it really wasn’t and the topic of our conversation was…ah, you really REALLY DON’T want to know! I think Krissa actually started it…so I’ll just blame her! 😉 Saturday morning found all of the bridesmaids and the bride at the beauty salon in El Dorado getting updo’s on our hair. Then it was off to the church, getting dressed, touching up our make-up…and picture time. After we had smiled so much for all the pictures, it was time to go into hidding while all of the guests arrived. We got a little bored waiting for 2:00 to roll around…so, we played the ‘hat game,’ hung out with the groomsman downstairs, and played more ‘hat game’ with the guys. I don’t think the guys ever ‘got’ the game. 😉 Maybe it’s because they were all stoned on Red Bull. (lol!) The wedding itself was very beautiful and I was honored to be Mary’s Maid-of-Honor. The bride looked absolutely BEAUTIFUL! CONGRATULATIONS ARLEN AND MARY!!!! =D During part of the rehearsal, the groomsman and bridesmaids did a little work on the getaway car! It was really the guy’s idea…we just went along for the fun. Shaving cream and toilet paper made a hot red mustung look even better! Then it was finally time for the official bride and groom to get-away…and the party was over. 😦  Next…clean up….

I was kinda sad when the wedding was all over because it was a great deal of fun and I’d been looking forward to it for a long time. Well…since New Year’s Eve anyway. That is when Arlen proposed to Mary. (By the way, to see pictures, go to my ‘foto flicks’ page.)

Then this past Wednesday, I was at work again planning a mall scavenger hunt for my little sister who just graduated from Bob Jones University. Since actually graduating from BJU with a Bachelor’s degree in Print Journalsim and actually surviving the very conservative and strick rules of the campus was quite an accomplishment (and she even graduated with honors! YEA!), I wanted to do something special for her. And special, random, embarrassing and a whole lot of others things is exactly what is turned out to be! Serena and I set up a surprise lunch in Wichita at Buffalo Wild Wings with a couple of Krissa’s close friends. She was totally surprised but even more so when we all went to Town East afterwards and sent her on a wild scavenger hunt. We are such great sisters and friends that we made her ride the kiddie rides, buy some guy’s boxer shorts, chew on 3 super-sized gumballs at once, tie a tie, model some 4″ pumps, practice some weight lifting…and various other tasks the she found very thrilling indeed! It was soooooo much fun though…I hate to think of what my payback might be someday. (I’m thinking that I won’t ever have a wedding…I’ll just elope!)  And before we officially ended the fun day, we enjoyed some delicious Cold Stone Ice Cream! YUM YUM!

Krissa spent the rest of the week (from Wednesday on) with one of her good friends, Shannon and then they will be ‘staffers’ at CYIA (Christian Youth In Action) the next two weeks in Newton. Krissa has gone to CYIA for 5-6 years now I think and she really enjoys it. After she returns back home, she’ll only be home for a couple more weeks before moving to Birmingham, AL.

Today, I went into Dodge and did some random shopping. My car had an appointment at the service station to get the oil checked and tires rotated. When I got back home, I laid out in the sun to tan for about an hour but I sprayed myself down the hose beforehand because it got pretty hot. Once I dried, I still had sweat pouring off of me. I practiced piano for a couple of hours and went out jogging this evening. The winds calmed down as the sun was setting and it turned out to be a very pretty evening.

Welp…that’s a recap of what’s been happening recently…and most of those days in between the ones I mentioned, I was probably working. Tomorrow, I’m taking my Grandma to a family reunion in Galva, Kansas. I’m glad I have this weekend off from work so I can take her because she doesn’t like to drive very far on her own. I’m looking forward to spending some time with her and will get to see some of my great uncles, aunts, and cousins.

I am really putting the miles on my car this summer and that’s not such a good thing with gas prices especially. I’ve been to the Wichita area like three times in the past couple of weeks with the wedding and everything and I’m planning two trips out to Colorado this summer. Hummm…maybe I should consider getting a motorcyle. 😉 That would actually be kinda fun, but I can’t really see myself on one!

 

 

 

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Another bit of everything…

I should mention this on my blog since I’m already two days late…but better late than never right! HAPPY BIRTHDAY SERENA!!! May 16th was actually my older sister’s birthday and she turned 25. Yea…I find it hard to believe too. Krissa and I took her out to eat tonight and then to the movies…Prince Caspian. We had a super good time with plenty of giggles and sister-bonding to last…well, a while anyway! 😉 Good thing Dad choose to stay at home…he would have been worn out by three giggly girls! The movie was good but the food and laughter was even better!

Besides working, I’ve been doing a lot of jogging, working out, tanning (yes…even in the hot sweating sun!), planning (for various upcoming ‘things’), and hanging out with friends. And of course, there’s always piano practicing and helping out with cooking, cleaning, etc.

Oh, and that reminds me…last week was our last Kid’s Club for the Summer and I do have quite a few pics, so I will try to create and album soon so y’all can get a glimpse of the eventful Wednesday evenings! Soon…hopefully!

This is going to be short tonight because right now, I need to call one of my really super incredible awesome wonderful sweet friends…and then it’s off to bed because tomorrow is WORK AGAIN (at the hospital).

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A little bit of everything…

Oh my goodness! These days are going by super fast…May is going to be gone with another gust of wind it seems! 😉 I’m still missing South Carolina…I miss the beauty of the flowers, the trees, the landscape with the hills and mountains…and most of all, I miss the quietness. Sure, the wind breezes and blows a little, but it’s not nearly as loud and gusty as it’s been around here recently. But I am enjoying the warmer weather…despite even the wind! I think I laid out in the sun a wee bit too long this afternoon…because I noticed that my shoulder’s were red instead of brown this evening. Ouch! Oh well, I just hope it turns into a nice tan in the next few days…and doesn’t peel! In addition, I’ve been trying to keep up on running. This evening, I ran 6 miles in exactly 53 minutes! Yeah!! Picking up my pace is proving grueling but I am making slow progress…and I’m always up for a good hard challenge!

It has been super nice having Krissa home…we’ve enjoyed many evenings of just chatting, working on our laptops together, and watching movies. And…no movie is complete without popcorn and Mt. Dew! Last night, we watched Alvin and the Chipmunks…it was super cute, even though I was a bit distracted. You see, I was multi-tasking (which I seem to do a lot of anymore…). I was also surfing the internet trying to come up with some fun creative chick-flick party ideas for the afternoon before my friend’s wedding. Krissa is usually the party planner in our family, so I consulted with her and I think we came up with a pretty cool mall scavenger hunt. And we’ll be really close to Wichita so we’ll be able to invade Town East Square! I’m lookin’ forward to it!

Serena’s been sewing up a storm…as usual. She keeps really busy with her online sewing business and classes and doing some custom sewing locally as well. I don’t see how she does it all! And then, she manages to take care of Dad when Krissa and I…well, forget. {blush, blush} I love you Serena! Dad has been outside doing some fence mending…that seems to be a never ending chore. Tomorrow, he’s hoping that the wind stays calm enough so he can go out and spray the fields. We’ll see…

I worked Friday and then this past weekend. Friday and Saturday kept us hopping as we had surgeries but by Sunday, everything had calmed down quite a bit. It was actually really good to get back to work after being off for about a week. I miss my co-workers when I don’t see them! I go back to work Thursday and Friday this week.

The rest of this week is going to be pretty busy for our whole family…actually this whole Summer will be! So I’m going to apologize in advance for not blogging as much as I want to! But I’ll try my best to keep you in on all of the excitement, road trips, parties, camps, and fun…! =)

 

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YIPEEEEEEE!

I have some thrilling news! My sister, Krissa found out just the other day that she was choosen for the 6-month editorial internship at Southern Living Magazine Corporation. YIPEEEEEEEEEE! It was a volcanic mountain of excitement, disbelief, screaming, squealing, giddiness, rambling, shock and pure bliss that erupted from that girl the rest of the afternoon and day. I don’t think I can actually come up with enough words to describe her uncontainable and indescribable burst of emotions. I think she was on cloud 9 or the moon…or maybe both! Ever since she started college and discovered how much she enjoyed writing, she has dreamt of writing for Southern Living…and now it’s not just a dream, it’s reality! So that means that my dear sister will be moving to Birmingham, Alabama in July. And if I have all my facts straight, I think she will actually be writing for the Southern Accents Magazine, which is a branch of the Southern Living Corporation. None the less, I will be subscribing to that magazine and you should too! I’m really REALLY happy for her, even though our sister-to-sister relationship will be long-distance once again! 😉 (That just means I get to take more road trips to the east in the future! =D)

 

 

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Smiles and laughs

Welp…we are all back home now. The whole family…for a while anyway (that’s pretty amazing)! Our trip to SC was incredible and so much fun. I really didn’t want to come back to Kansas…the countryside is much more colorful up that way than in the Midwest. On Sunday, we visited the famous Biltmore Castle in NC…that was spectacular…if you ever get the chance to go…GO! You won’t regret it and it is well worth the cost of admission. Most of the day we spent touring the castle and the miles of gardens and estate grounds. It was almost like heaven on earth! The castle itself has too many rooms to count and 43 bathrooms…43 BATHROOMS! Can you imagine?!?! I just hate to think of all the cleaning that would require…uge! I absolutely loved the old Victorian style but to live in such royalty everyday…hummm. No more sweat pants or t-shirts or bad hair days or make-up-less days. Nope! Everyday would be dress up. That would be…well, awkward…but fun!

Our drive home was…loooong! We left about 8:00 am Monday morning and drove straight through the Carolinas, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri, and finally back home to Kansas. Dad and Serena took turns driving the van and Krissa and I, her PT cruiser. After about midnight, each minute seemed to go by slower and  s l o w e r.  Caffeine and sugar only work for a while you know. A couple of times, I thought I was going to loose Krissa to sleep while she was driving…so I did my best a making a bunch of noise. I think it worked because we did make it home. Lady greeted us early Tuesday about 4:30 am when we drove into our driveway.

Praise the Lord that we did have a very safe trip. It didn’t even rain and we didn’t run into any storms! And back home, everything was in order. The cows were all accounted for and Lady and the cats did fine while we were away. We have much to be thankful for indeed!

Krissa has now officially graduated with honors from Bob Jones University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Print Journalism. WOW! That’s pretty amazing! I’m not sure that reality has completely sunk in for any of us. Those three long years of stressful college life have come to a close. She was pretty ecstatic at her graduation on Saturday…I don’t think anything could compare to the thrill of that moment that she walked across the stage of the grand Founder’s Memorial Amphitorium and shook the hand of Dr. Bob Jones!! We were so proud of her! =) Then the sad part came…when she had to say goodbye to all of her friends, dorm buddies, and Collegian co-staffers. It was bitter-sweet…she’s pumped to be DONE but will miss the busy fun filled college days too.

I could honestly go on and on and on about Krissa graduating and the trip and even a whole lot of little things that enhanced the trip even more…but I won’t bore you with all those little details or the many inside jokes that would be meaningless unless you know the whole story (and that might require a book or an encyclopedia!). So…I’ll simply say that we smiled a lot, laughed a whole lot more, and didn’t want the days to end. I think Dad even laughed some…and that’s quite an accomplishment! 😉 If you check out my “foto flicks” page, you can see a few of the fun moments and happy faces!

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Bound for South Carolina!

Thursday 5:00 pm:

The long awaited day has finally arrived. Yes! We’re making our way to Greenville, SC for my little sister‘s graduation from Bob Jones University. We’vebeen on the road since about 6:45 this am. Now we are in the middle of get-off-work traffic in St. Louis, MO. Oh…and THERE’S THE FAMOUS ST. LOUIS ARCH! So far, these 10 of the 22 hour drive have been pretty uneventful. We had to take a little detour before hitting St. Louis and since Dad was driving, Serena was playing co-pilot. I was worried there for a while…but we ended up in St. Louis so her directions skills must not be too bad.

It has been really windy today with temperatures up in the 80’s. But right now, our van thermometer reads 71 degrees and it is overcast outside. It really looks like it could rain…but nope, we’ve not seen a drop. When we went through Kansas City, we drove right past St. Joseph Hospital…I notice those things being a nurse. I would have liked to stop and toured the place, but that didn’t seem very feasible. Dad and Serena wouldn’t have been very keen on the idea either I’m sure. Boy, the buildings are so much taller out here than they are in Ensign Kansas! 😉

Uh-oh! I don’t like it when dad says “we should be on that other road over there.” And then Serena says, “I should have been paying more attention. I must have missed it.” Great! Don’t look at me cause I really have no clue. When it comes to directions, I’m worse than a blonde! Serena drove for a few hours this afternoon while Dad and I both napped. I’ve also been watching a few old Andy Griffith shows and looking through some camp photos for the presentation that we’re putting together for church. Hummm…guess I’m gonna be up for driving in a bit. Dad’s gonna hop in the back seat…he must havea lot of faith in Serena and I! Plans are for us to get on the other side of Nashville, TN and spend the night; then finish the drive to Greenville in the am. WOW! There’s actually trees out here…and they’re actually green, not brown.

5:16 pm:

So we’ve been through Kansas, Missouri, and now we’re in Illinois. I’ve seen a lot of casinos (advertisements that is). You now those big flashy signs that seem to say “STOP HERE! This is where all the fun begins.” Unfortunately that is also where the fun ends. Even if you win a few times, you’re bound to loose some too. Besides, why would you want to gamble your money ‘hoping’ that you’ll be lucky enough to win some big bucks! Most likely you won’t and then you’re left with what…? Nothing! Absolutely nothing!

7:00 pm:

Nashville is 180 miles away. Another good 3 hours probably. We’ve been snacking on crackers, cheese, peanuts, grapes, and Diet Mt. Dew of course! Dad’s still driving and Serena and I are making good headway on putting together the camp presentation. It’s so pretty out here…trees trees trees that are green green green! Finally, something besides brown. I know brown is a popular fashion color right now, but green still looks better on trees and grass, don’t ya think?!?!?! Okay…so Serena just informed us that at Knoxville, TN, is when we will loose an hour but I believe that will be tomorrow. We’ll still be in Central time tonight.

11:35 pm:

Finally! We’re in Lebanon TN. It is actually awesome outside…I’d like to sleep under the stars but I suppose I really shouldn’t do that. I drove about the last 4 hours. It’s been a looooong day…driving nearly 16 hours. Welp…we’re gonna get some zzzz and hit the road again in the morning. Just ‘bout 6 more hours to go! YIPEE!

Friday 8:05 am:

Good morning! It is a beautiful warm morning in Tennessee. 71 degrees. The sun is shining, but it is very windy…again. Although the night seemed kinda short, we have just left the “Comfort Inn” and are already on the road. As I stepped outside early this am before dawn (uh…4:45 am to be exact) to work out in the fitness center, it was so so nice. The wind had not picked up yet and there was a stunning peacefulness. I really wished I could just run down the quiet streets of Lebanon rather than do my exercising behind the doors of the motel. But I figured that was a bit risky, especially being in an unfamiliar town. So I turned the ac on high, hopped on the elliptical, and began my usual routine of praying and reading a book.

The countryside sure is breathtaking…I’m convinced that I need to move out this way to more fully enjoy the vast variety of colors in God’s creation, rather than just seeing everything in brown. 😉 Hummm…but I’ve got to come up with a ’good excuse’ to move out here. I’ll be thinking on that one for a while. =) Dad’s driving, Serena’s listening to her ipod, and I’m…writing this draft for my blog. Unfortunately I won’t be able to post it until we reach our destination and then I’ll be able to access the internet.

1:53 pm ET:

Yup! We’re officially in the Eastern Time Zone and just entered South Carolina. Greenville: 27 miles. We just made a quick lunch break stop at Subway and now are back on the road. Krissa called a little bit ago to touch base with us. She says she’s “busy busy” this afternoon with meetings and get-togethers with friends. At 6:15 this evening, we’re meeting her on the BJU campus and she’s going to take us into downtown Greenville for an ice cream social with some of her closest friends. Yum Yum! It’s about 72 degrees right now and sunny but the wind is still gusting. Man! I left Kansas to get away from the wind…guess it followed me. :-/ AHHH…I think my ears are popping. I totally dislike that feeling.

2:28 pm:

“Welcome to Greenville!” I remember that welcoming sign from a few years ago. Oh…there’s a Lowe’s store…that’s Dad’s Wal-Mart! And…right now I don’t think Dad knows where he’s going. We’re hunting for the Courtyard Marriott Hotel which isn’t far from the BJU campus. Okay…time to pull out those mapquest papers that we printed off the internet. Oh dear, this is a bad sign…Serena’s trying to figure out which direction to hold the map so she can tell Dad where to turn! It might be a loooong afternoon! I seriously think that we are just going in circles. Yup! I’ve seen that same building three times now! Oh my goodness! Serena is holding her laptop upside down to read the map online. And she’s laughing because I’m laughing at her so none of us can think very straight. Dad’s even chuckling. At least we’re having fun…even if we are lost. Serena just tried to explain some directions….that made absolutely no sense! Her logic is as loop-holey as a spaghetti strainer, maybe worse.

2:56 pm:

Dad stopped at a Blimpie convenient store to ask for directions. So I think we’re on the right track now. Oh oh oh…there’s a lime green convertible! AHHH…it’s SO cute! Wade Hampton Blvd…okay, we finally know where we are. BJU is on this street and so the hotel isn’t far now. There’s Bob Jones University!

3:23 pm:

We’ve officially arrived…the Courtyard Marriott! WHEW! Now the real fun begins…!

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