Three Weekend Catchup

August 4th, 2018 No comments

Last weekend was pretty busy. Friday (7/27) we saw Shinedown and Godsmack live. I was wise to the venue’s shenanigans so I hid two extra water bottle caps in my bag so when they confiscated the ones on our water we could reseal them and put them back in our bags so they’d stay colder. We had a quick dinner at home before leaving but stopped at Target by the venue to grab a few snacks which we enjoyed during the show. We had seats but didn’t care for their placement so headed up to the lawn area like last time. The bands were much louder this time around so it was a good call. Shinedown put on a good show even though the actual sound seemed a bit distorted. Godsmack was much better, though! I really enjoyed their energy and wasn’t even mad that (I think) they played Whatever twice since I love that song. I’ve been trying like hell to find either a review or a recording of the full show to validate this, but haven’t had any luck. We did take off during the last song so we could get out of the parking lot with ease. There were definitely twice as many people in attendance than when we saw Poison but luckily even though the far away bathroom had a line it moved swiftly. They have about 40 stalls in there with workers directing you to open ones by calling out the number painted on the outside of the door which is very helpful to keep things moving. Standing on the lawn made my feet sore, though, but the show was too good to sit through.

Saturday (7/29) we relaxed since Sunday was Pierogi Fest day! We picked up my brother around 10:30 and made it to the fest right around official opening. We headed straight to Dan’s Pierogis like we always do and spent about 25 minutes in line. We shared some sweet cheese plus Joe got a meat one and I got cherry. He let me have a bite of the meat and I liked it so I’ll be getting some of those too next year and skipping the cherry. I didn’t get as many piergois as I normally can eat because I was saving room for a taco pierogi from the Mendoza truck, only to find out they no longer make them because the owner sold the truck but not the machine that makes the pierogis. That was a pretty huge disappointment. Joe got a polish dog, J got a corndog, and we shared some mini donuts that could have been better (first time even getting mini donuts that were not that good). We ended up at the White Castle just outside the festival grounds to get a couple of sliders before dropping J off and heading home. So I guess this year was a bit of a flop, although the weather wasn’t terribly hot like most years and despite the crowd being bigger (we usually go on a Friday) we were able to find parking nearby and a place to sit as long as we shared a table with others. So all in all not bad, but because of the timing we had to skip the Milwaukee Brew Fest this year. It would have been too hectic plus there wasn’t anyone to watch Wookie. That’s probably the only one thing I don’t like about having a dog – not being able to just do stuff without worrying about who is going to keep an eye on her. We let her roam the downstairs when we’re not home and she pretty much just sleeps the entire time but I would feel awful leaving her home alone any longer than 8 hours at a time.

This weekend was spent with Joe’s dad who is visiting from Arizona. Joe picked him up on Thursday (8/2) after work while I was at home tidying up the house and preparing a surprise dessert – chocolate peanut butter pie – which ended up being a hit with both of them. I also made beef stroganoff for dinner.

Friday (8/3) was their birthdays so we went out for breakfast, drove around the arboretum for a bit (his dad cannot walk long distances), and stopped for gelato on the way home. We originally planned to have Red Robin for dinner but his dad slept so late (he takes daily naps) we decided to order deep dish from Lou Malnatis instead.

Saturday (8/4) we went to IKEA for breakfast and spent a little time in the pool (his dad just sat in the shade). After Joe’s dad’s nap we went to Red Robin for dinner.

Sunday (8/5) we had a light breakfast at home because we had lunch at The Pit Ribhouse in Hickory Hills at 1 pm. The kids both brought their significant others which was fun. They were late to arrive (no surprise there); E and his girlfriend (who we met for the first time) had to leave early as it was so they didn’t get to visit too long.

After lunch we dropped Joe’s dad off at Joe’s aunt’s house. We visited for a bit and fixed her computer’s wifi connection so Joe’s dad could get on Facebook. We also left with two pieces of homemade pineapple upside-down cake which we didn’t get to enjoy right away since Joe wasn’t able to eat on Monday due to a colonoscopy on Tuesday. He ended up doing the same prep I did since it was cheaper than the prescription. The doctor said the prep was good and he didn’t have any polyps. We’re both free from this nonsense for five years which is good since it’s going to cost us about $1200 out of pocket, thank you crappy insurance. It used to be only $250 through Blue Cross Blue Shield but they haven’t been an option with Joe’s recent employers. We have Aetna which I don’t like as much.

Friday (8/10) I did a deep clean downstairs since I hadn’t cleaned in almost two weeks! I also reorganized the laundry room and guest bathroom cabinets. Once Joe got home we headed out to Dollar Tree and Costco. We decided to get a couple of hot dogs before shopping and just as we were finishing up I spotted friends of ours in the checkout line. That’s the second time in about two months that we’ve run into them at Costco. We chatted for a bit and then did our shopping. We also took Wookie to the dog park that evening. I got the pass last month since it’s half price after July 1st.

Saturday (8/11) we had breakfast with Joe’s dad, aunt, and cousin and then visited with his dad and aunt at her house for a bit since his dad was flying home that afternoon.

We decided to visit Lake Katherine and The Little Red Schoolhouse before heading home. I brought my camera and got some nice shots. We didn’t stay long at either location very long since it was around noon and already very warm and humid outside.

That evening we took Wookie to the dog park again where she almost played with this cute white Bischon named Luna. She (Luna) was egging Wookie on but I think she’s still not sure how to dog. That’s totally our fault for not socializing her enough as a puppy. I hope after more trips to the park she’ll figure it out because I think she’d enjoy herself if she realized the other dog isn’t trying to hurt her. I plan on taking her to a local daycare next week after our neighbor sang its praises. It would be good to have a place close by we can take her in a pinch. Their rates are not much different from what my friend charges and Wookie could play with other dogs (assuming she wants to do so).

Sunday (8/12) we ran more errands and I got a bunch of different colored leggings from Walmart as well as two shirts that go well with them (and are long enough to cover my crotch which is perfect for wearing leggings outside the house).

I’m also still dealing with the whole glasses/frames fiasco. I really wish my eyes didn’t get so dry and itchy with contacts so I wouldn’t even need to worry as much about finding a comfortable pair of frames.

Categories: Excursions, Family, Food, Fun & Games Tags:

Summer Party & Being Excluded

July 16th, 2018 No comments

Yesterday (Sunday, July 15th) was our friend’s annual summer party. We met with our mutual friends (K, E, and S) for lunch beforehand at a place they suggested called Charkies which is really close to our house, and then arrived at our friend’s house around 3 when her party started. We wanted to get there earlier than we usually do because we couldn’t stay late to watch the fireworks because we needed to be home for Wookie who has developed a fear of them. Last year they, and thunderstorms, didn’t really phase her but now she paces and pants trying to get away from the noise. We’ve tried two different doses of Xanax which hasn’t worked so we just stick around so she’ll feel safe.

Things are also really busy for Joe right now at his job after his company was purchased by another much larger one and he was promoted, so he had to work the next day. He also worked Saturday from 3-midnight which really bummed me out especially because I found out Brother J and my mom went to Brother B’s house to visit. Granted, they didn’t stay long because my mom is too sensitive to everything, but considering she’s only come to my house twice in fourteen years and has already been to Brother B’s house 3+ times, it bugs me. When I mentioned that to Brother J he said “move closer” which aggravated me because while I am further away than Brother B, I’m an hour’s drive so it’s not like I’m across the country. It’s not my fault both my mom and Brother J refuse to drive on expressways. I understand being scared to drive them when the experience is new but you quickly adjust. Their problem is they refuse to even try, much like other things they are completely stubborn about. It’s really getting to me that every single holiday requires us going to my parents’ house vs them coming over to mine occasionally. Needless to say I ended up crying myself to sleep because I was feeling really unloved and lonely. Hanging out with friends Sunday kinda helped get me out of my funk at least so the weekend didn’t end on a low note.

Categories: Family, Friends, Fun & Games Tags:

Brother J Visits

July 9th, 2018 No comments

I took last week off from work because they are renovating the office which includes redoing the floors and installing new cubicles with much shorter walls (which I’m seriously dreading). I didn’t want to spend all week displaced so I decided to use some of my accumulated time off to hang out at home. Since I only work Tue-Thu and Wednesday was a holiday, I only needed to use two vacation days.

Monday (7/2) I went out to lunch with my friend C and cleaned the house Tuesday (7/3) to prepare for my Brother J to visit for a few days.

Wednesday (7/4) morning Joe and I drove to my parents house to pick up J. We stopped at Savers on the way back and then came home to start grilling some ribs we purchased at Costco over the weekend, as well as burgers. Wookie was thrilled to see J and was comfortable enough to let him rub her belly. It was really cute. She also would run over and lick his face at random times throughout the week. He’s become a lot more comfortable around her (he’s always been a bit fearful of dogs in general) which is nice because we might be able to have him dog-sit for us occasionally as long as we’re willing to do a bunch of driving since he’s not comfortable driving on expressways and taking side streets from his house to ours would take over two hours.

Anyway, here’s what we basically did the rest of the week:

Wednesday night – Watched Maximum Overdrive. I stayed up until midnight with Wookie until the fireworks stopped and she calmed down. Joe had to get to sleep since he had work the next day.

Thursday (7/5) – Joe at work. Called around to check on driveway progress, of which there was none even though this project was due to be completed on June 28th. Played Wii games (Mad World & Simpsons). Took J to Half Price Books and Chick-fil-A for lunch. Played Jeopardy & Song Quiz games on Alexa. Had baked spaghetti for dinner. Watched Dead Snow (so, so bad) and then Blockers (which was much better, but we had seen it before).

Friday (7/6) – Went to Taco bell for breakfast. Saw Antman and The Wasp at theater. Awesome movie! The trailer didn’t do it a lick of justice. Took Wookie for a walk at Armstrong park. Watched Pacific Rim: Uprising.

Saturday (7/7) – Joe made Waffles for breakfast. J and I played Wii (Donkey Kong and Raving Rabids, then Let’s Tap). We all went to McDonald’s for a late lunch, and then visited Brother B for an hour and a half before we dropped Brother J back at home.

Sunday (7/8) – Joe and I went on a morning bike ride at Armstrong park. After coming home and showering we ran to Kohl’s where I paid $3 for a pair of shorts since they gave me $15 in Kohl’s Cash. Then we did a little grocery shopping before coming home to relax.

Today (7/9) I’ve just been cleaning and calling around trying to find out when the hell our driveway apron is going to be filled with concrete. The village informed me that the concrete company had inspections scheduled but they were cancelled since they haven’t paid the village a re-inspection fee. I called the association and demanded to speak to the property manager (who never gets back to us when we call) and of course she wasn’t available. I was at least given her voicemail and left one for her that I am hoping she returns. I think at this point they need to fire these idiots and get someone else to finish the work. What a nightmare.

My boss texted me this morning to let me know the renovation at work is behind schedule so I’ll be sitting in a conference room tomorrow, and possibly Thursday, until our new cubicles are set up.

I like things neat and orderly and I have neither of those things at home or work so I’m feeling very stressed. On top of that my new glasses are too heavy and despite multiple trips back to the clinic to have the nose pads and temples adjusted, they are still hurting my face. I am going there today to have them put on the new silicone nose pads I ordered from Amazon as a last ditch effort. If that doesn’t work I’m going to have to pick out a different pair of frames which sucks because I really grew to like the ones my optician had chosen for me. They look much nicer on me than my old glasses. Too bad they aren’t comfortable, ugh!

Categories: Family, Fun & Games, Health, House & Home, Work Tags:

Shoes & A Visit From E

June 25th, 2018 1 comment

Saturday (6/23) we decided to walk around Geneva since it was their annual Swedish Days festival. It was a beautiful day outside and it was fun looking at all the stuff for sale. We picked up these cute little garden animals for $1.39 and put them by our tree in the front.

We also got Wookie a new toy for only $1.50.

As we were walking out of a shop we ran into my good friend, C, with her husband and two of her daughter’s friends. It’s funny how we tend to run into her at fairs, festivals, or just out shopping, more than anyone else we know.

Before leaving we tried a new place called Atlas Chicken Shack and shared an order of fries and a chicken sandwich smothered with ranch dressing. We really liked the dill in the ranch dressing; it gave it a unique flavor.

On our way home we stopped at Old Time Pottery and found a plant stand for outside the front door like Joe had been wanting. It’s already come in handy for setting things down when opening the door (since we STILL can’t use our driveway … more on that in a bit) so I’m not sure I’d even want to put a plant there. Plus, we’re not so good at keeping plants alive. We planted some wildflowers in the planters this year and they just started flowering, but that’s only because they don’t require any care and the rain has been keeping them hydrated.

Joe also spotted that they had a metal baking pan with a plastic lid which I have been searching for to replace ours since the non-stick coating on the inside was coming off. It was on sale too so it was only $7.

Sunday (6/24) we ran to Kohls so I could return a pair of grey Addidas running shoes I had purchased a few weeks back. I’m bummed because I really liked the style but once I started walking around in them (in the house, to keep them clean until I was sure I’d be keeping them), I found they were uncomfortable. I replaced them with a grey pair of New Balance shoes that cost slightly less ($56 after 20% off coupon) so I’m keeping my fingers crossed they will fit better. I wanted a sneaker that wasn’t white yet light in color to go with certain outfits that don’t quite look right with my black shoes.

We also stopped by Costco and I ended up getting a black pair of Reeboks since they were only $20. I’m not positive I’m going to like them but I figured they were worth trying for the price (and their generous return policy).

Joe’s son decided to pay us a visit Sunday afternoon which was nice. He’s been so busy with school and two jobs that we rarely see him. We went out to lunch and then to the mall since he likes the FYE there. He ended up getting 6 Funko POP! vinyl characters (he collects certain ones) and a CD. I’m so glad he’s making his own money now, LOL! But seriously, he was very sweet offering to buy us the Stefon POP character that we got all excited spotting.

I took a picture of it for my Instagram but I don’t want to actually own it. If anything, I want to have less useless possessions, not more.

Back at the house we played The Logo Game and watched some YouTube videos before E took off around 8 pm.

Today I went to Savers to look for clothes because I’ve recently donated all the stuff I don’t wear and replaced it with stuff I love, like leggings and cozy shirts. I scored three items, one of which I think I might be able to wear with leggings to work since it’s long enough to cover my butt. I wish it was easier to find tunics because I don’t feel comfortable wearing shorter shirts with tight-fitting pants.

Despite being told on Saturday by someone who works for the company who is replacing our driveways and patios that they would be filling the driveway aprons with concrete today, they didn’t do it. All they filled was the remaining patios and rip up some driveways on the remaining building. We are both extremely aggravated by this since the last time they did ANY work on our building was a week and a half ago. They have been trying to do too many drives/patios at once and were nowhere to be found for a few days last week. There’s just no reason this should’t be done by now. I called to complain last Thursday but they don’t care.

Meanwhile all these people are unable to use their driveways/garages for WEEKS and it’s getting old. And because they ripped up even more while the two buildings they were in process of working on are still not done there are even less available parking spots on the street. It’s supposed to storm tomorrow so chances are nothing will be done then either. So best case scenario at this point is they will fill the aprons on Wednesday and since you have to wait four full days before driving on them we won’t be able to use our driveway until Monday which is past the last day they claimed this would all be done (June 29th). That last building won’t have to wait as long since once they are done with our two building they only have one left to work on, although at this rate I feel like they purposely drag things out that should have taken a week or less. I’m just beyond annoyed at this point.

Glasses & Haircuts

June 18th, 2018 No comments

Another four day weekend is almost over. I dread going into the office more and more these days, not because I hate my job but because I just hate sitting at a desk all day under bright florescent lights listening to other people make annoying noises. It’s only going to get worse in less than a month when they finish an office remodel which includes replacing all our cubicles with new ones with much lower walls on them. Kill me now.

Friday (6/15) for dinner we tried a new Chinese place that opened recently very close to home and between their price, portion size, and taste, they are a winner. I just finished the last of my Pad See Ew (they do Thai dishes as well) for lunch today, in fact.

Saturday (6/16) morning we headed to the Wheaton Eye Clinic so I could look at their frames since the ones at Visionworks sucked so bad I took them back for a refund. They matched with me a woman named Michelle since she specializes in helping people find suitable glasses. I explained what I was looking for and learned that the reason I’m having such difficulty is the latest trend is over-sized frames. Well, normal frames are over-sized on my face face as it is so that sucks.

That being said, she listened to what I was looking for and went around their showroom and pulled several frames for me to try on. Most of them were duds but we did find a pair I liked that she, another woman, and Joe all agreed suited my face better than the pair I’ve been wearing. They are larger around my eyes which she explained will help make the prescription more consistent through the viewing area, but are small enough that my eyes are more centered in the lens. The bridge is 1mm shorter and the temple is 5mm shorter than my current pair which should help stop them from slipping down my nose.

My only reservation is while they are labeled as purple/rose by the manufacturer, it’s more like maroon and I really wanted black. I trusted Michelle when she said they come in brown, blue, and this purple color, but when I was googling the style online last night I learned they also come in black/orchid which is totally up my alley. Now, it may be that they don’t carry that color combo in their store, and even though I like that color it might not look good on me, but I’d like to at least try them! I called over there this morning but no one is picking up the phone so I left a message and have yet to hear back. I already ordered my glasses but I’m thinking since it’s just the frame that I could be potentially changing, it shouldn’t be a big deal to them. Oh, and the total price was less than $30 more than I paid at Visionworks but at least these people actually work with you instead of leaving you to pick your own frames without verifying how they look or fit on you. I don’t think I’ll ever shop the retail vision places again because every last one of them (Lens Crafters, Four Eyes, America’s Best) were the same way.

After the eye place we went to the Subaru dealership to pick up some touch-up paint for my car since I messed up the mirror months ago when I got too close to our storage racks in the garage. At some point we’ll have to try using that. I know it won’t look perfect but better than it does now. I’m just glad it’s on the passenger side so I’m not constantly reminded of the damage I inflicted on my poor car before it was even six months old. This is why I can’t have nice things. ;)

Speaking of nice things – I found a pair of grey Addidas running shoes at Kohl’s a few weeks ago that I really liked. They were rather pricey at $60 but would go with a lot of my summer outfits. Well, I tested them out today by wearing them for a few hours and I’m disappointed to say I need to take them back. They were causing pain in my left foot and then it started vibrating, perhaps from a nerve being pinched or something, I don’t know. Back to the drawing board I guess. I hate shoe shopping! I just want something affordable, comfortable, and pretty basic. I thought they were going to be it but no.

Sunday (6/17) we finally saw Solo: A Star Wars Story which I thought was just ok. It wasn’t great, but not terrible either. There were a few boring parts but the ending was interesting at least. Afterwards we had lunch at Red Robin since I had earned a free burger. We spent the remainder of the day watching TV because it’s been crazy hot all weekend.

Today (6/18) I went to Great Clips for a haircut and am already wishing I had gotten a little bit more cut off. I asked for three inches and the woman made it sound like anything more would put my hair at my shoulders which turned out not to be the case so it could be shorter. Oh well, this is what I get for not wanting to drop $50+ at a real salon. I went to the same location where they fixed my hair after the woman I usually like screwed up my hair at a different location. The woman who did my cut today was the same one who fixed it last time so at least the ends are even. I had her round the back and do face framing with some feathering in the front/sides and for the most part I like it. At least it doesn’t look super choppy like the time I went to The Hair Cuttery and the stylist was just not getting it when I explained what I wanted. It took her three attempts before it came out right and I almost cried. Ugh!

I also stopped at Dunkin Donuts for an iced coffee I plan to nurse all this week but they overcharged me! I put together my order in the app and then picked it up during happy hour. It should have cost $1.50 but they charged me full price which I didn’t notice until I left. Usually the app shows the full price because they don’t know whether you’re actually going to pick it up during the discount period so I wasn’t too worried until I checked the app and see they charged me more than they should have. I tried calling the store and no one picks up. So I tried calling Dunkin Donuts corporate and the wait time was over thirty minutes so I ended up emailing them instead. I hope they get back to me and make things right. I usually don’t go to that particular location so I’m not sure if the mistake was caused by that store or if something went wrong in the app.

Update: Got a call back from Michelle at the eye place and she ordered the black/orchid pair of frames so I can try those too. I hope I like them just because that’s my favorite color combo but she said no big deal if I end up sticking with the original color. At least one thing is going right today.

Categories: Food, Health, Shopping, Work Tags: