Thursday, November 30, 2006

Welcome To Ohio

We've been having unusually warm weather in Ohio this week. We're talking low to mid 60's. That's just crazy. However, it looks as though the bottom is going to start to drop out. By 4pm today the temperature will be down to 50 degrees and then it looks as though it will just drop from there. High near 45 tomorrow. Then 34 Sat and Sun. Then a cold 25 on Monday! That's crazy talk. But it's Ohio for you. I've also been looking at Orlando's weather. Of course it's a week ahead of time, but it looks like it will be high of 71 and scattered showers on next Saturday. You can bet that I'll be keeping an eye on that. Maybe I should invest in some ponchos before we leave...instead of paying high dollar down there. That's a thought. I'm sure most of you were already on the email list but to fill you in. Mom was supposed to retire this week from Ford/Visteon/whatever name you want. Basically it was a buyout type of deal. But at the last minute has decided to change her mind. At this time she's going to ride it out and see what happens. Not that it matters, but I think it's a good decision. As she stated, she wouldn't actually be retiring....she still would need to make money. And why not continue to make the money while she can, in addition to keeping benefits and earning more money towards retirement. They don't know what to expect in a variety of ways, including the next contract. There may not be good health insurance coverage or any at all. But I'm sure if they'd pull active workers benefits the retirees benefits wouldn't be far off from being diminished either. I'm proud of you mom. I think you just wanted to have some cake...wink, wink. It kind of reminds me of the time we had to celebrate Lily's Birthday twice since I messed up the month. That's why she's aging so fast! Dumb me. Last night we started working on our luminaries. We've decided to try something else.....aluminum/tin can types instead of milk jugs. I think they're going to be cool. Our neighbor Sue works for Serving Our Seniors and has access to the big cans, so she's been having them collect them. After taking about 45 minutes and ruining 2-3 cans we figured out the easiest way to drill holes in them. It's definitely not good to pound them! Drilling is the best. They look cool. I hope they show up enough. I like the idea because it's different and doesn't look like we're copying from anyone. With that being said I don't think we're in the Christmas decorating mood much anymore. We're still digging the music, but I must say it's awful hard to listen to it while it's 60 frickin' degrees outside. Soon enough. I'm sure I've already posted this. But it kind of freaks me out that Christmas is right around the corner. It's like I'm going through the motions, but it still should only be spring or something. And then to even think that 2007 is peaking around the corner. Yikes. I must comes to terms with all of this and enjoy it. Have a good day everyone!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Christmas Spirit

Hello. Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and are rested up for the work week. We of course had a wonderful Thanksgiving, but I can't say that I'm rested up. As most of you can tell with how sparse my posts have been things still have been quite hectic around here. Studying up on Disney (okay, not really studying but just reading everything I can because I'm so excited), decorating (along with dealing with all of the buzzkills of decorating...keep reading), and getting more involved in our community. Let's start with the community thing. As stated in a previous post, we're trying to build a better neighborhood. Not that it's bad, but just giving it a nudge in the right way. We've been getting to know our neighbors up the street (Mark and Sue). They're the ones with the House On Third Street. If you haven't heard of their house, you must check it out. It's the "foam house" that's energy efficient. Anyway, they're great people and we've been getting to know each other by working together. They're front stoop has a great quote that I feel sums up what's we're working for.....“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead. We have many things that have been brought to the table but at this time we're focusing on a few. Those include......starting a new tradition on our block with luminaries, having a Holiday Get Together to get to know one another, having neighborhood meetings, and then also trying to apply for a grant to have different street signs installed that distinguish us from the rest of the city. So as you can see, that emcompasses a lot. Basically what we're focusing on is building camaraderie and hope that in moving in a positive direction others will follow. We went door to door on Saturday giving out information in regards to the party and the luminary plans. It was great weather and most people were already outside, so it made it easy. I'm excited for what we're doing. And it's fun at the same time. I've posted the blog I started for our neighborhood in my Links to the left. To explain the name McKelvey Plat....our area was formerly called this, so we've grabbed on to that. Ahh, so the decorating buzzkills. As I stated in the last post I feel as though we've been buying so many lights but our house needs something more. One thing is we're using blue lights. Not too bright versus clear/white lights. Then trying to get the darn colors to match. Now I know why people choose clear! It's been frustrating. First the rope lights didn't match, now we have the big bulbs that don't match the small bulbs (but those are staying darn it....because they're already up and out of the box). Then we got some other big round bulbs. Those don't match the small bulbs...they match the big ones. Not a big deal, but I think they're going to be hard to keep up (they're "frosted" and the pain will chip off). So sorry, but those got to go back. We were hoping to get bigger bulbs in hopes of lighting this place up but it's been hard. Then we have a large side of the house that's exposed and just waiting to be decorated. So we figured we could do something for that. We'd like to make a sign out of wood but being that we will be leaving in a week or so I don't think it's going to happen. So I thought "what about a big wreath?" Mom and I went to Pat Catans. We even brainstormed how to hang the thing and went to Home Depot to get hardware. And we bought ribbon and made a hug bow. Then got to our house and found that our house dwarfed the frickin' wreath. AND the blue spotlight we got to highlight the wreath didn't show up at all since it was too far from it. Dang it! So the $40 wreath must be taken back along with the bulb for the spotlight, and the 3 boxes of round bulb lights. I think I've made more returns in the past month than I've ever made in my entire life. Shouldn't this be easy? Nah, of course not. Poor David. He's just bummed. He wants that "cool" house on the street...of course we want to be classy and not trashy. It will will come. And at this point we've put a lot of money into it. I don't want to spend much more this year. Hey, I got to have something to take on vacation. Okay, I'm done with that subject. It's my last week of the semester this week. Sweet. However, I went to send my stuff in tonight and found I need to have my huge checklist submitted by tomorrow. Whoops, I thought I had another week. And it must be signed....bad news. So I somehow have to get it signed tomorrow (the person who needs to sign it is off). It will get done. And work has been extra stressful for me lately. I shouldn't say stressful, but very tiring. I'm working up front in reception training the new girl, but double timing in the back when they need me to help or during surgeries. So I feel like I'm being torn in every direction. And I don't want to bring it up to the boss because then they'll think that I can't handle it. I thrive on this type of stuff. But you have your limit. And I don't feel that the pressure is evenly spaced between individuals. And I'm trying to be as understanding and supportive as I can be as there is a deeper story to the situation at work. But I'll just leave it at that. Let's just say I'll be ready for Florida when it arrives. Hopefully I'll be able to keep more up to date with the blog, at least until we leave. Sorry for those that have missed it. Love to you all!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Very Productive Weekend

Good Evening! We've been keeping busy around the Henry household lately, as you can probably guess with me not posting very much. It's crazy for me to think that the holiday season is already here....however, at the same time I'm ready for it to be here. Ready to enjoy family, Christmas lights, holiday movies, and vacation. On Friday we headed to Chet and Matt's then to the mall. On Saturday we slept in a little since we both had the day off and got our indoor Christmas decorating started. We've never started decorating this early, but we feel like it and with us being gone for a week I want to be able to enjoy it while we can. Saturday afternoon was spent at the 'rents house watching The Game. It was a very good game. Some nailbiting moments for me but some fun jumping up and down moments too. I agree with Sita, we should set up a camera with a tripod sometime to videotape ourselves going crazy. Let's just say we're all pretty animated. For instance, Dad flies out of the recliner as Sloopy goes flying off the back. Poor guy. Quite a treat to see though. That evening we went to Friendlys to celebrate with some sundaes and went to Walmart to get even more Christmas lights. I swear we've bought so many lights but when you look at our house we have a ways ago. A little each year, I say. It will be cool. At the same time though, we've bought a lot and returned a lot too. The colors don't match or something. So maybe it just seems as though we're buying a lot. This morning we got up and headed outside to work on Christmas lights and the yard. Of course it rained/drizzled today, but the yard is hopefully cleaned up for the year (probably not but at least I can hope). After that we went on the walk around the neighborhood with our neighbors to count the street signs and such. Remember we've been involved in trying to make our neighborhood more distinguished? We're going to try to have different/nicer street signs installed (with grant money) it's just one of the steps along the way. After that we came in to our warm and cozy house and finished decorating the tree. I must say I really love it this year. Very pretty. And we hardly put any ornaments on. I just didn't feel like it this year. And it looks just as beautiful. While David watched the game mom and I went out know the, lowes, meijer, the mall. We got everything for Thanksgiving and of course picked up even more Christmas lights. We had dinner at Bob Evans and then here we are settling down getting ready for the next week. Enjoying our tree, listening to some Jim Brickman, surrounded by our kids. It can't get any better than this. We send our love to everyone...and hope everyone has a wonderful beginning to their Holiday week.
Go Buckeyes!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

New Buckeye Video

I threw this together this morning....enjoy!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The Chicago Experience

I finally have a moment to sit down and write. We had a great time in Chicago and learned tons of stuff. We ended up getting there at a decent time on Friday so we spent the evening on Michigan Ave. That in itself was a learning experience. Needless to say we seemed to do everything backwards. Parking was quite expensive. We expected it to be high but not $32 for 3 hours! In searching for parking it seemed as though there were many lots but all of them were full. So when we passed a parking garage we took it. We didn’t see the price sign upon entering, until we got to the ticket thing. That’s when we realized it was going to be expensive. We had no way out. And there were signs everywhere saying to pay in the lobby, there’s no attendant on duty at the bottom. So we got out and decided to find the lobby. That was a trip in itself too. We finally found it, only to find that it was like an atm machine how you pay. So I figured we’d ask someone about the parking. She said that most places were about the same price but if we pay for something in the mall then we could get the ticket validated and get cheaper parking. Good to go. So we went about our business and went EVERYWHERE. And got our ticket validated. The validation ink was kind of smeared so the concierge said that if we have problems to just push the “ask for assistance button” on the machine. We went to pay for our parking and it came up $32 instead of the $11 with the validation. So we pushed the button and a maintenance person hurried over and pushed cancel and said “there’s someone at the bottom of the parking ramp” and to just pay there. Say what? So there was someone at the bottom of the garage in the first place? So we went there and found out our parking was $32. You see we went over the 3 hours limit for our validation time. Ah well. Also, we had been shopping everywhere and then of course near the end of our time there we found a place that had all these free maps and stuff. Once again, ah well. But we had a wonderful time and it was nice to be back in a city again. Oh, but one thing that was a huge buzz kill was the gap. I was all siked to go there because the product red stuff. We got there and they had all the same stuff that was in Ohio. So as I had thought they must be slowly releasing the different shirts, sayings, etc. Anyway, I figured, “well why not take some pictures.” And all the sudden I had a manager yelling to me saying no photographs are allowed. I can understand why to a certain extent but then I think to myself. You have this store on Oprah and it’s such a big deal with the product red stuff, wouldn’t you expect people to take pictures? Also, I’ve seen other people’s personal pictures on the Internet. So I got a couple pictures before they could catch me. But anyway, it was a HUGE bummer. And I must say I was on the bandwagon before but at this point I’m very disappointed and I feel that they’re going to lose a lot of interest due to only having a few things out and also the price of the items. I get the concept of the proceeds going to the organization but everywhere you read it says something different. Some say all the profit, some say net profit, and some say something totally different. There’s a big difference. Not to mention, they have sweatshirts that are still around $50. That’s just crazy. But I guess if you’re already willing to pay that for a sweatshirt then you might as well get one that has proceeds going to something. But me, I won’t pay that much for a sweatshirt. Whatever. As stated before, we learned a lot at the conference. The hotel was super nice. It was a Westin. I’ve always known them to be nice, but have never been in one. I believe it was pretty new too. There were fresh flowers everywhere and the ambience was awesome. However, there were no vending machines anywhere….only the mini bar with $7 snacks and a closed coffee place that sells $4 coffees. And when you get there at 10pm and want something, that’s pretty inconvenient. Even the water in the room was $4 per bottle. Good thing we made friends with the bellhop. When we were searching for something we ran back into him and asked where we could find some water. He said, “You want water?” And then handed us each a bottled water. That was nice and actually I think they were his personal waters. Of course there were many other things that happened but I’d be here for days telling you about all of that. And it’s about time to head down to our neighborhood meeting. Have a great rest of the week. Happy Birthday Sita!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Chicago's Coming

Last day of work this week. Sweet. I'm sure by the end of the weekend by brain will be so full I'm not sure what I'll do with it. We've decided to leave a bit earlier tomorrow. Hopefully around 9:30-10:00. We weren't planning on leaving until noon, but that'd get us into the city about rush hour. I know any hour of traffic in Chicago isn't good, but I'd like to avoid that. The past 24 hours I've been working hard to get things together. Is anyone else like that? You bust your butt to clean before leaving on a trip in hopes that when you get back you come home to a clean and orderly house? The bathrooms are cleaned, dogs have had baths, flea and heartworm preventatives given, wash done, folded, and put away. The list goes on. Leaving for Disney should be interesting. Even more things to do and let's hope that the cats don't secretly have a party when we're away! I always think of that Tidy Cats commercial when they're having a party while the owner's away. Jax always watches us from the window while we leave to go anywhere. I can just see him being the lookout and then running in and unlocking the dog kennels and having a good ol' time. I know, it's not realistic, but it brings a smile to my face thinking about it. So mischevious. I've also been working on a Photo Story project for someone at work. Her son will be 1 in December, so it's all pictures from his first year. Just trying to find that right song(s) to put with it. My tastes may be very different than hers and we seem to be having a hard time thinking of one. Or we'll hear something and I try to find it to download it and can't find it. At this point I don't want to buy an entire CD just for one song for this. I was thinking of using a Jim Brickman song. Piano that's very soothing and progressive at the same time. However, with the amount of pictures (69) I'm going to need another song. So I was thinking something slower to begin with and then maybe a more upbeat one. Any ideas??? Better get going. Hope ya'll have a great end to the week and warm and cozy weekend.