Super(fun)Bowl

Posted in Sports on February 3rd, 2009 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I am much more of a baseball fan than a football fan (see my countdown timer to the first game of Cubs spring training to the right).  But I will admit that I love watching football; mainly because my husband loves it, and I love to see him enjoy things that make him happy.  Oh, that and the fact that whenever he watches football, it’s become sort of a tradition with us that he gives me excellent backrubs!  So while I couldn’t care less who won yesterday’s Superbowl,( although I chose the Cardinals to root for because it’s always fun to pick a team and scream and shout and get into the game) I did have a great time watching it.

We had decided to have a get-together; a fun evening filled with friends and food (too much food!  We had to have pizza for dinner again Monday and will have it twice more this week  just to get rid of all the extras!).  Because I have 4 kids, I didn’t get to see all of my favorite part of the Superbowl – the commercials.  But that’s ok, I’m sure I can catch them online somewhere if I’m so inclined.  The ones I did see were pretty good – I especially liked the Potato Head one (think it was for tires).  It just cracks me up when Mrs. Potato Head changes into her ‘angry’ eyes, hehehe!  I also really liked the careerbuilder.com commercial with the moose head on the wall – I won’t spoil the rest of it because I recommend you go out and find it yourself if you haven’t seen it.  I missed the newest E-Trade.com commercials with the talking baby, so those I will have to find because I always enjoy those.  Oh, and I’ll have to see the latest chapter in the saga of the Budweiser Clydesdales…

As for halftime, I’m not a fan of “The Boss”, so I wasn’t paying attention to Bruce Springsteen’s performance.  I am glad to note, however, that he didn’t incur a wardrobe malfunction ala Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson circa Superbowl XXXVII in 2004.  Also during halftime, there was a special 3D event.  We had picked up enough pairs of 3D glasses for the party at a store ahead of time (we actually got enough to last us until Superbowl L!), but in my opinion, they should have given a few minutes warning for people to get their glasses ready.  We had ours ready because they did mention it in the 2nd quarter, but I didn’t get a chance to get my regular eyeglasses to wear underneath, which guaranteed an absence of 3D for me.  But other people seemed pretty impressed…  I have seen the preview for Monsters Vs. Aliens in the movie theater and it looks really funny – I’m looking forward to that movie coming out.

Well, anyway, much fun was had by all.  We had originally intended to make this a game night / Superbowl party, but by the time the big game ended, there wasn’t any time for board games.  Next time!  And oh yeah, I should report that the Pittsburgh Steelers won the Superbowl, in case you’re using my site for a news report 🙂

You Delivered My Pizza, But Please Don’t Watch Me Eat It

Posted in Everyday Life, Theater on December 21st, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

We had a great weekend, even though the weather on Sunday was horrid – so cold my Christmas teddy bear got frozen to the window!  Friday night was an all-night work session to finish up the planning and organization of our community theater’s awards show, which is where we went Saturday night.  But first on Saturday afternoon, it was a birthday celebration for our oldest who turned 9 on Sunday with a MUCH anticipated visit from family who live out of state.  We had a great time catching up and watching the kids open their birthday and Christmas presents, and the kids got to have a sleepover in the hotel with Grandma, Papa, and Uncle Bud while we went to the awards show.  The awards show was lots of fun, as always, and I got to watch 2 very good friends win much-deserved achievment awards.  Congratulations, guys!

It was lots of fun putting the show together, even if we didn’t have much time to do so due to last minute notice from the theater.  It was fun and also rewarding to watch the individual skits, shorts, songs, and awards presentations start as ideas on paper and then watch when they came together as a whole.  It’s also a fun excuse to get everyone together, and it’s always nice to see long-lost busy friends who are unable to get together but for this one night.  It might be fun to produce the awards show again next year, but then again, I’d love to have my best friend sitting beside me to watch them because I missed him this year – even though he did make an excellent host.  If there are a few individuals in the theater community who have a hard time because they don’t win awards, then let them have their hard time.  There is talk of cancelling this awards show, and I would be very sad if that happened.  It’s definitely a whole ton of fun for most of us, and I really don’t think we should let a few individuals ruin it for everyone.  That’s all I’m going to say on the subject for now, but expect to hear more from me once this very topic is discussed at the next production board meeting.

Sunday we had major Grandma-let-down, and because we didn’t want our oldest daughter to be depressed on her actual birthday, we let her have a friend sleep over.  During football season, we usually set aside Sundays for low-key stuff, like watching football, reading newspapers, and blogging, but we always end up with crazy kids so it’s never exactly low-key.  But I don’t usually cook dinner on Sundays, and today we ordered pizza.  Five minutes after the pizza was delivered, we noticed the delivery guy was still parked out front and that he was standing outside of his car.  Turns out, he had locked himself out of the car, and so we offered him a warm place to wait for his ride.  Since the temperature outside has been hovering around 0° all day, with wind chills near -20°, he gratefully accepted.  And he stood in our front hall for almost 30 minutes!  If he were outside, he would have frozen to death.  But it did feel a little awkward eating the pizza he delivered while he stood there.  We offered him a seat in the living room, but he opted to stand in the entryway, and I’m kind of glad because at least we were then eating out of his view.  Our 2-year-old kept asking about “the pizza guy”, and then he became scary to her – “I scared pizza guy” – probably cuz he was just standing there, doing nothing, and she’s never seen anyone do that in our front hall before.  But finally his ride came, thank goodness, and he left.  I wonder if he gets paid for the time he was standing in our house?  I wonder who pays for the gas that was used in his running car while he was waiting for his ride?  Should we have offered him some pizza?  It was kind of a weird situation, but it does make for interesting blog fodder.  Of course it had to happen on the coldest day of the year – that guy has a new story to tell!

Windy City White House

Posted in Travel on November 13th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Windy City White House” is more of a reference to our visit to the Windy City rather than a blog post about the recent election – it’s over and done with, and although I won’t talk much about the outcome, I am happy to not have to hear about it on the news anymore.  While in Illinois, my mother-in-law kept talking about what huge news it is that Obama was elected and how his pick for Chief-of-Staff, Rahm Emanuel is a fellow Chicagoan – making it a ‘Windy City White House’.

But back to our family – it’s my blog, after all.  We scheduled an early Christmas with our family in Illinois this past weekend (the early Christmas theme is something that seems popular with tangents.org bloggers), and overall, it was great.  There are a few reasons we decided to do things this way – 1) We’re sick of the hustle and bustle of opening our presents from Santa and then rushing off to Illinois on Christmas Day  – add to that having the flu during this trip twice and UGH.  Best to travel before flu season.  2) My daughter was off school Friday for parent/teacher conferences 3) We wanted to beat the rush and other travelers.  Overall, it was a really great decision, although the trip was last minute, and so we did forget a few of the presents which we’ll now have to send.  We left Ohio on Friday morning and after a bit of traffic-sitting (of course), we got to my grandparents house about 40 minutes past schedule.  But no matter, they’re fully aware of the traffic problems plaguing their area.  We were treated to a delicious lunch of my grandma’s sloppy joes (love ’em), and the girls got to open presents.  My grandpa gets tired really quickly, and so we didn’t stay too long there, and then it was on to our hotel.  My husband uses hotwire.com and got us a suite at the Sheraton for $49 – a nice price for the area.  When we pulled up to our hotel, we were pleased to see it was the same hotel where we spent our wedding night – that was a nice surprise.  My mom and my sister brought her two boys over for some swimming, and we all had a blast even though their indoor pool was chilly.  Luckily, I had thought to turn up our room’s thermostat so when we got back to the room we didn’t freeze, although it was quite crowded trying to get 10 hungry people changed out of bathing suits and trying to order pizza at the same time.  It was a suite, but it was probably the smallest suite I have ever seen, and we had 6 little kids and 4 adults in there.  My mother and sister wisely decided that they couldn’t wait for the time it would take to get pizza, and they got something to eat on the way home.  That was a good idea because my mom had to get up early the next day and didn’t want to be out too late.  They know their area well enough to realize that pizza delivery on a Friday night would take over an hour – and they were right.  My poor kids were starving and I had to raid my diaper bag.  I found a little bag of oyster crackers and two small bags of peanuts, so I divied everything up 3 ways (Survivor-style) and it quieted them a little until the pizza came.  Overall, the kids were kind of spastic all day, especially my oldest for some reason…  My husband blames the tension of the Chicagoland area, but then again, he hates it as much as I do.  We love seeing family, just wish we could visit them somewhere else!

Saturday morning we were up bright and early to meet my mother-in-law for breakfast at Uptown Cafe in Arlington Heights – the place has the best eggs benedict in the nation.  And I know this because way back when, before we had all these kids, my husband and I used to travel constantly, and one of the things we would look for was good hollandaise sauce.  We never found any that came close to Uptown Cafe’s.  And the owners remember us – we used to go there a lot when we lived in the area; I was pregnant with my first daughter.  They are surprised every time they see us because we usually have a new baby or two.  After breakfast, we went back to my mother-in-law’s house, and I felt badly for dropping in on my husband’s sister and her family without any notice.  This is one of the details that was overlooked in the last minute planning.  But it was ok; I didn’t have my gifts for their 3 kids, so I’ll have to send them.  But our kids had lots of fun playing together, and it’s important to me that my kids know their extended family, especially since a lot of hatchets have been buried over the years on this side of the family.

Next, it was time to see our good friend, the author of the sublife blog on tangents.org.  It was great to see him, especially on his own turf, but he’s right in his blog – there really wasn’t much time for chatting.  The kids wouldn’t have allowed us to just sit and talk peacefully, and we wanted to take them somewhere fun, so we went to an overflowing Chuck E. Cheese.  After waiting in line to park, I realized that I hadn’t seen our camera since I took a picture of the kids on the luggage rack at the hotel that morning.  Sound familiar?  Yes, I have terrible luck with digital cameras.  And worse, this one was not mine – I had borrowed it from Jamiahsh for the trip, so I was sick about losing it.  Luckily for me, it turned up when we got home though – YAY!  I was especially upset because I knew that I had put it in my diaper bag – I really thought someone had taken it.  Pessimistic of me, you’d think, except that we did have our tokens stolen from our table at Chuck E. Cheese with my husband less than 5 feet away.  Takes all kinds to steal game tokens from little kids, doesn’t it….  at least they didn’t also steal my digital camera.  We got lunch at a Vienna Beef hot dog place in Arlington Heights called Jimmy’s – highly recommended you get real Chicago-style beef sandwiches and ‘dogs if you’re in the area – YUM!

The ride home was uneventful – the kids slept most of the way, thank goodness.  We did manage to stop and get me my crave case of White Castles, and so our car reeked of steamed onions – thank goodness we weren’t pulled over or we may have gotten a ticket for disturbing the peace.  Maybe I wouldn’t have stopped if I’d known what White Castles would do to a 2-year-old’s diaper.  I tried to deliver some to my friend Carol who graciously pet sits for us, but for some reason, she neglected to pick them up.  My husband says that not everyone likes White Castles.  We picked up the slyders (as White Castles are known) in Dolton, Illinois; not the best area, but it just off the expressway so we made it unscathed.  Ironically, something made me talk about Dolton just before the stop; I was telling my husband how it’s gotten to be a really bad area and that I knew a family that had left there in the ’80’s because it was getting so bad, so imagine it now.  Then we saw a sign that said “Dolton Bowl” right across the street from the White Castle, and we laughed at the irony.  But overall, a nice trip, especially considering the area where we had to take it.  One positive thing I will say about the area is that they have excellent food.

Three quarters of my kids on the luggage cart: