Thursday, August 28, 2008


Not theology, just St. Paul.

I have been into St. Paul for work everyday this week, so I’ve been witnessing the transformation of the city as it prepares for the Republican National Convention.

Parking lots have transformed into television studios and staging areas. Billboards have gone up. Fencing has been placed along highways. Massive flags have been spray painted on grassy areas. Signs everywhere. Red, white, and blue everywhere. People in suits everywhere.

It has been fun to watch, but I’m going to save myself the headache and not go anywhere near St. Paul for the next week. It seems like the city will be pretty well barricaded, so I doubt they’d let me in even if I tried.


Seriously – I am just giddy thinking about FOOTBALL and FALL TV. I really like them both.

Plus the weather has been, like, PERFECT this week.

Usually I am awfully melancholy as Labor Day approaches, knowing that it means summer is over. But not this year. I am unusually excited for fall! Bring it on!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The State Fair Game

Whenever my sisters and I go to a place with crowds (movie theatres, ball games, malls, etc), we play The State Fair Game. How to play: The winner is the person who sees someone they know first (before the others see someone they know). You have to say hello to that person. Once a winner is confirmed, the losers have to buy the winner a treat. The game is named after the State Fair because it seems like you ALWAYS run into someone you know at the Fair, and of course, the treats are the best prize ever (and the most expensive treats around).

I explain the game to you because it is my number one goal to win The State Fair Game when I go later this week.

I also CAN’T WAIT to eat cheese curds and a soft pretzel. I know my sister will be craving corn dogs and corn on the cob. We’ll also definitely share a tub of Sweet Martha’s.

So pretty much, that is why I go to the Fair: to eat. Even winning the Game involves eating.

Actually, today I was thinking about going to the Fair and I thought of a few other things I am looking forward to: the Miracle of Birth booth, the 4H exhibits, the chintzy freebies, and of course the people watching.

Should be a good time. I’ll be sure to give you a full rundown of what I ate when all is said and done.

Monday, August 25, 2008

What I Read on Vacation

  • Magazines: three Entertainment Weekly, two Sports Illustrated, two Redbook, one Woman's Day, one People
  • The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
  • Peace Like a River by Leif Enger
  • Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult
  • Between Sundays by Karen Kingsbury

I planned on reading more nonfiction, but I don't feel too bad about it. I read A LOT. I needed the escape into novels. I really liked the novels I read, and I obviously had some magazines to catch up on. I suppose I could include my reviews of each of these books, but I don't really feel like detailing all of them. I'll just say that both Joy Luck Club and Peace Like a River were written in very unique styles, both different than I had ever read before. What I appreciated most about both of those books was the character development. Peace Like a River was surprising in many ways, so that kept me interested. Of course I love Jodi Picoult, and Plain Truth did not disappoint. Keeps you guessing until literally the last page. Again, great character development. Between Sundays was exactly what I expected: a fluffy religious novel with gushy love stories. I like it. Such a fun escape. I liked even more that the story revolved around football (I CAN'T WAIT FOR FOOTBALL) and was such a quick read.

Even with all the reading, I still had a chance to catch up on Project Runway, Flipping Out, the Olympics, and JON AND KATE PLUS EIGHT (LOVE THAT SHOW). I don't have cable, so I indulge while I'm on vacation. I also rode the SeaDoo until I wanted my arms to fall off! I love vacation, but now it is back to reality. MEH

Monday, August 18, 2008


I will not be blogging this week.....


I have no idea what time it is right now, and I hardly know what day it is (isn't vacation great like that?!). All I know is that it is sunny and I am already tan. And I still have five more days of lounging by the lake left! We leave my Uncle and Aunt's house today to head to their (GORGEOUS) lake home in the Poconos, so I won't have internet access (and I didn't even bring my computer on this trip at all - a TRUE vacation from it all).

Now if my sister's flight would just hurry up and get here, the real fun can start!!

I'm sure with all the reading and conversing I will be doing this week I will have plenty of blog topics when I get back. Until then, have a great week - I certainly will!!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Die to Self

Here’s the thing. I disagree with Oprah. A LOT. I’m always a little apprehensive when I tell people that because, you know, she’s Oprah. So many people admire her, but I do not. I have my reasons, but that is a whole ‘nother post (or two or three).

For the sake of today’s post, I’ll quickly share one reason: I think she says things and acts in ways that degrade marriage. And I value marriage as an important, sacred covenant. Even though I’m not married, my beliefs about marriage influence how I live my single life as well. I don’t care for the way Oprah treats this subject.

So you can imagine my surprise when I arrived home from work to find Oprah’s show with the title of “Why Did I Get Married?” on. Oprah can’t answer this question, so she interviewed some “normal” people about their marriages, and then some celebrities. I doubted that any of the four couples would offer a Christian view of marriage, but I was pleased to hear one of the men say that he “died to himself”. Oprah was SHOCKED. She commented “I have never heard anyone say they died to themselves!” Hey Oprah – ever heard of a little book called the Bible?! It’s probably more popular than The Secret. Just sayin’.

Paraphrasing what the man said next: “Yes, I die to myself so that I can esteem my partner and her needs.” Again, Oprah was shocked. She said to his spouse, “Wow, you have him trained well!” The spouse replied, “God has trained him well.”

Glad to hear at least a few comments along these lines on Oprah.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Call me crazy. I wasn’t that excited for the Olympics (I know – AM I EVEN AMERICAN?!). That was until I happened to have it on in the background as I finished up some emails on Sunday night and I saw the BEST. RACE. EVER. If you’ve been under a rock, USA beat France (who had been trash-talkin’) in the Men’s 4X100 swimming relay by a fingertip. Not only was it won in incredible come-from-behind fashion, it kept Phelps’ hope alive of breaking the record for gold medals won at a single Olympic games (8).

Still, I’m not glued to my TV like many people I know are. But I do really enjoy watching when I can. I’ve always loved sports and I’ve always been really competitive, so the Olympics really appeal in those ways. Plus, I cry at, like, every single back story they play. That’s just how I roll.

But you know what is really sad? I didn’t even watch the Opening Ceremonies (but the bits I’ve seen replayed looked amazing!). Instead I was following the VIKINGS! They had their first preseason game last Friday, but I was in Green Bay where we couldn’t watch it or find it on the radio. So Dad and I pulled up ESPN online gamewatch, and followed the screen as it refreshed after each play. Yes, I love football that much. Pathetic? Prolly. It was only a preseason game (that they lost), after all. But still. I have been a long suffering fan since the last great season (save one huge missed field goal) in 1998, so I really am looking forward to what should be a winning season! SKOAL!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Number 10

If you’ve known me for more than a day, you know that I love fast food. That’s because I eat fast food at least once a day (IT’S CALLED CONSISTENCY, PEOPLE). Some of you are thinking “ewww” and some of you are thinking “yum”. I really think it is a combination of both. Totally yummy-grossness.

My disease is so rampant that in high school, my town had no Burger King, so I would drive 30 minutes (one way) JUST to eat Burger King. MMMM…..flame broiled. I really like so many of the fast food restaurants, but my tried and true fave is McDonald’s (who’s isn’t?!). I like it more each day, and it’s not because they’ve improved their menu with salads and “apple fries”. Look, MickeyD’s, you can add as many healthy options as you want, and I will still order the 10 piece Chicken McNuggets. *cue mouth watering*

I hardly ever waver from ordering this meal, however over the years I have changed my habits a bit. For a while I didn’t order the fries. Also, I used to always order BBQ sauce, but then one fateful day in Rome I was starving, so we caved and went to a McDonald's, where my friend ordered sweet and sour with her nuggets. One dip and I was hooked.

So you can imagine my disappointment when I drove through McDonald’s last night and ordered the WRONG MEAL! I said “Number 10 with Sprite” and moments later, as I arrived at the window to pay, I realized that I was thinking 10 piece nuggets, which caused me to say TEN when the nuggets are actually Number 12 (I know – don’t confuse an ABSENT MINDED SCATTERBRAIN with ADD, okay?!). Oops. I dreaded what meal awaited me at the next window. At best, a cheeseburger. At worst, a fish sandwich. It turned out to be a chicken sandwich (with pickles – just pickles). Not so bad. I lived to tell about it.

This whole situation made me consider changing things up a bit and working my way through the menu. I suppose if I am going to eat fast food everyday I could at least vary the meal choices. I entertained that thought for all of three seconds before my mouth started watering for some chicken nuggets with sweet and sour. I mean, seriously. What do they put in those things?!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

A Mixed Bag

I head to Green Bay on Wednesday to act as Dad’s nurse as he gets his third chemo treatment.

What I am looking forward to:

  • Seeing Mom and Dad: Man, I seriously love being with my parents. We’ve gotten to the parent/friend point of life and it rocks.
  • Time in the car: Listening to music and sermons, driving, scenery, I love it all.
  • Chemo: Can’t wait to see what goes on and understand more about the whole process.
  • Food: My mom = best cook ever

What I am not looking forward to:

  • Seeing Mom and Dad: There’s no doubt that this has been a summer of suffering for them. I hate witnessing it.
  • Time in the car: It’s when my mind wanders most. Lately I end up in tears because I get so overcome with fear and anxiety.
  • Chemo: I don’t think anyone really wants to see their Dad have chemo. I mean, really. That stinks.
  • Food: I have a knee injury, thus no working out for 2 months, thus an added 10 lbs. I really don’t need to be tempted with yummy food right now.

So it’s a mixed bag. Say a prayer for my family. Cancer is a long road and we appreciate your support.

Friday, August 1, 2008

She Can Be Taught!

Big news: last night I went to the doctor. Why is that big news, you ask? Well, because just one year ago this week I refused to pay attention the horrible pain in my stomach for 6 days until my sisters forced me to go to the doctor and they found my appendix had BURST and I had a little infection issue…..yikes. Emergency surgery, 4 days in the hospital, another week laid up at home, and tons of antibiotics later, I learned my lesson. PAY ATTENTION to your body or you very well may become septic and not wake up again (which the doctor said could have happened in my case).

The short story of my appendix is (WARNING: I don’t do short stories…) that on a Saturday night I had some pain in my stomach. Didn’t think much of it, but at church the next morning I was very tired and some friends said that I looked sick. Later that afternoon I had a fever, but I still packed my bag to go to Kansas City for a three day business meeting. The meeting was important enough that I could ignore the pain during the day (while I alternated eating Tylenol and Advil like candy), but the evenings were terrible! One evening our activity was to go to the Royals/Yankees game. I really wanted to see an outdoor baseball game and I also didn’t want to back out because “my stomach hurts” (there were 14 of us and I was the only female. I could just imagine what they would think of me). So I toughed it out. I got back to the cities on Wed and proceeded to go on another trip for business to Wisconsin. On the drive home Friday night I felt SO SICK. My sisters were going to meet me at my house to go to the cabin for a Sisters Only weekend. Well, when I told them how I felt they FORCED me to go to the hospital. I just wanted to get to Brainerd and see if I still felt sick the next day, but they (thankfully) convinced me to take the detour. That was about 8pm on Fri, and by 2am I was being cut open. My poor sisters. On their only weekend off from working in the hospital, they spent their cabin weekend at a hospital with me.

People who have appendicitis don’t usually get to the point where it bursts since the pain usually gets them to a hospital before that point. But I just ignored and ignored and ignored the signs. My mother was (rightfully) very concerned that I did that, so I made a promise that I wouldn’t do it again.

Here’s the problem: it seems like every time I go to the doctor, they have no idea what is going on with me. So that is why I avoid going. Even with my appendix, I thought they would tell me I was constipated and send me home with a laxative. Usually I just have a strange virus or a really bad cold, so I just decide that I am tough enough to let it pass, but I learned quickly that appendicitis doesn’t just pass…

So last night when my fever topped 101, I could hardly swallow, I was having chills, and my ENTIRE BODY ACHED, I went to Now Care. I thought I might have Avian Flu. More realistically I figured I had strep (or that’s what I was hoping, so as to not waste my time and theirs). I wanted to get medicine before I went to the cabin for the weekend. No such luck. Just a bad virus. Meh. So here I am, at home, still with a fever, still with aching, but hoping it passes soon so I can head north!

And again, I feel silly for going to the doctor for “nothing”. But there is no doubt I am sick, and I also proved that I can be taught!