Treat Yo Self

November 15th, 2015 No comments

The weekend before last E came over and we ended up buying a second used drum set for the Xbox 360 (for him to take home). Only $10 after a 40% off coupon at Half Price Books. Interestingly enough, it was almost two years to the day when we purchased the first drum set from the same place and paid roughly the same.

Needless to say, we spent that Saturday playing Rock Band and Band Hero to make sure the drums worked. Bonus: we didn’t have to do it in the loft since there was one more open HDMI port on the tv downstairs to hook up the Xbox. I really suck at the drums (not coordinated enough) so I played guitar. I always forgot how fun those games are; yet we rarely play.

We didn’t have anything planned this past weekend so I ended up buying stuff I didn’t need (although I like it all). Boredom can be a dangerous thing!

Treat Yo Self

I guess sometimes you just need to treat yo self. At least I used coupons. Two of the four pillar candles were free, as well as one votive and the votive holder. The lotion was on sale for $3 (normally $9.50) which is still pricey for what you get, but Joe loves that scent (Warm Vanilla Sugar) on me and I haven’t owned any since my niece bought me some as a Christmas present over a decade ago. This was my first purchase from Charming Charlie even though I’ve browsed the store several times in the past. I felt rather guilty splurging but I will be making some good money soon with a pet sitting gig I have lined up which should cover Christmas presents too. Woot!

We also took advantage of a good deal at Target and bought $150 worth of groceries for $110. We’ve got everything we need for Thanksgiving now. In fact, we need to stay away from Target altogether for awhile, at least when it comes to groceries. The pantry and freezer are at capacity!

Sunday I spent some long overdue quality time with the rats. I feel guilty that I don’t spend more time with them. Even working part time I feel like time is scarce to do everything I want.

The good news is the past two weeks or so I’ve had an unprecedented amount of energy. I’m not able to pinpoint where it’s coming from but it would be great if it lasts since I’m used to feeling fatigued.

Categories: Pets, Photos, Shopping Tags:


November 2nd, 2015 No comments

Our Halloween morning was more exciting than our evening because we decided to visit a local gun range. We’ve both owned a handgun for awhile but unlike Joe, I’ve never actually fired mine. We also have a rifle, so we took all three guns with us.

Joe fired a few rounds from my gun just to make sure it wouldn’t jam and then let me take over. The second shot I made with my gun caused an injury to my thumb when the hammer struck it making it bleed. Between that and being overwhelmed with the mere act of shooting a gun, plus the noise in the range, I put it down and told Joe I was done. But after I watched him for awhile I decided to try it again. I want to know how to protect myself if the need ever arises whether that be the zombie apocalypse or an intruder.

After adjusting my grip, I was able to fire my gun without any further injuries. I enjoyed firing the rifle more, though. Here’s some of my targets from both my handgun and the rifle, which are 22 caliber:


Here’s one of Joe’s from his gun which is a 9mm (I think):


He was impressed with my aim. What can I say, shooting up “ghosts” at Indiana Beach as a kid paid off. ;)

By the time we left the range I was much more comfortable with handling and shooting my gun. I also stopped jumping every time someone else fired their weapon. It was crazy crowded in the range too so I’m glad Joe booked the earliest slot.

After dropping our guns off at home we swung by Noodles & Company since we had gotten a BOGO coupon. We also stopped at Baskin Robbins for ice cream since all scoops are $1.31 on every 31st of the month.

We spent the rest of the day at home in anticipation of the trick-or-treaters. It was cold and rainy out, so we only got seven kids (three groups) which was lame. We also watched a movie Joe’s coworker recommended called Oculus. It was pretty good.

Next Halloween I’d rather be out of town. I love Halloween but it never lives up to the hype.

Categories: Excursions, Holidays, Photos Tags:

Our Anniversary and Lincoln Park Zoo

October 26th, 2015 No comments

Friday was our ten year wedding anniversary so Joe took the day off work so we could spend it together. We didn’t have anything too exciting planned – just a relaxing day and then a nice dinner to celebrate. In the morning we participated in a gummy vitamin taste test and a research facility. It was about an hour of our time and we each made $25 so that was nice.

We tried a new Thai restaurant in Wheaton. Well, it was a Thai place before so I’m not sure if it’s new owners and the old owners changing the name and trying to garner new clientele, but it wasn’t that impressive.

After lunch we made a trip to the arboretum to check out the fall foliage.

Morton Arboretum

We also stopped at a forest preserve called Churchill Woods but the weather was turning more grey so I didn’t get any good photos there.

Churchill Woods

We debated over whether to try a new to us, but expensive steakhouse, or stick with a place we knew. We opted for the latter and had it narrowed down between Claim Jumper and Lonestar, deciding on Lonestar which required us to drive out to Elgin. The meal was disappointing to say the least. My filet was way overcooked so I had to sit there watching Joe eat his (I insisted since I didn’t want it to get cold) while they prepared a new filet for me. The new one was at least cooked like I requested (medium), but I need A1 to make it tasty, which in my mind means the steak sucks (never needed A1 at Claim Jumper). I have no idea if this is a fluke, the location we visited sucks, or if Lonestar in general has gone downhill, but it ruined that chain for me. I’ve always loved their inexpensive food but I’ll think twice before ever eating there again.

We decided to get dessert and went to this Mexican ice cream place that had high ratings on Yelp. I didn’t care for it at all. My chocolate ice cream tasted like Hershey’s syrup. Ick. Needless to say the eating portion of our anniversary sucked.

Saturday we drove down to Oak Lawn to pick up E for lunch. We went to Culvers out in Orland Park. After dropping E off at home we hit the Walmart where I was finally able to find a pair of jeans in my desired size and color so I can wear my Cuddl Duds underneath them at work from now until April.

We had planned to attend a Halloween flea market Saturday night but changed our mind. It’s $7 to get in and all outdoors (for some reason I thought it was indoors) and it was drizzling. A few people online complained about the long lines last year which really discouraged us. So we went home and binge-watched some more Modern Family instead.

Sunday we decided to visit Lincoln Park Zoo. They had been bragging on their social media sites that the two red panda cubs born four months ago had just made their public debut and encouraged everyone to come visit them over the weekend. So we came, but we didn’t see squat!

We arrived to the zoo early and found free parking on Cannon Dr. which was awesome. The zoo gates were open already so we walked over to the red panda exhibit but it was empty. Thinking perhaps they wouldn’t be out until the official 10 am zoo opening, we checked out some other animals, including the lions where I got some great photos.


We made our way back to the red pandas just before 10 am. By then a crowd had formed but we were able to secure a spot in front just to the left of the exhibit. I had just learned that my SLR’s battery was on one bar so I vowed not to use the camera again until the red pandas came out. In the meantime, two cute little Eurasian Lynxs were let into their exhibit to our left. I wanted to get a photo and/or video of them but didn’t want to miss out on the pandas, so I reluctantly waited some more.

At some point after 10 am a zookeeper came into the exhibit to prepare it for the red pandas. Why they didn’t do that before the zoo opened, I don’t know. We waited almost an hour before an employee informed us that one of the panda cubs wasn’t ready to come out yet and they weren’t planning on opening the exhibit until he was and had no idea when that would be (and their indoor habitat is not viewable to the public). By this time the lynxs were back in their non-viewable to the public den so I missed that opportunity as well. To say I was disappointed, not to mentioned pissed off, is an understatement. Sorry, but I think if you’re posting all over social media asking the public to visit your zoo to see the pandas you better damn well put the pandas somewhere they can be seen. Seriously!

We spent another two hours at the zoo checking out the rest of the exhibits and returned to the red panda one several times but they were never out.

Finally we gave up and drove to Rodgers Park to this great Thai place to have lunch.

Monday I had an early doctor appointment to go over some stuff and she sent me for some routine blood work.

Categories: Animals, Excursions, Food, Photos Tags:

Gallery of Ghoulish Homes & Sonny Acres

October 19th, 2015 No comments

E bailed on us for the weekend to watch the playoffs with his friends so we did our October traditions alone.

Friday we were going to do a haunted hayride but it was too cold. I hope next weekend the weather is more cooperative so we can go.

Saturday evening, with homemade cocoa in hand, we took the Gallery of Ghoulish Homes Tour in St. Charles. There were a total of fifteen houses this year but we only visited eleven because four of them we’ve seen before and didn’t like. There were four rookies this year and all but one were very good.

Here’s a video I took of our favorite homes on the tour.

Sunday morning we headed to Sonny Acres for apple cider donuts and a walking taco for yours truly. The weather was pretty decent and we enjoyed people-watching for awhile. We stayed for about an hour and then headed back home in time for the Bears game.

Categories: Excursions Tags:

Modern Family

October 19th, 2015 No comments

I didn’t care for Modern Family when it first aired, and even when we would catch an episode here and there, I still wasn’t thrilled with it. But I guess repetition breeds likability, because Joe has been watching some of the reruns in syndication and now I’m really liking the show too. So much so, that Saturday we borrowed the 1st season from the library and have already watched 12 episodes.

Funny how that works, huh? Something similar happened with The Big Bang Theory too. I don’t think we started liking it until maybe the 2nd or 3rd season. Of course, we have what, six seasons of Modern Family to watch to get caught up, right? Challenge accepted.

Categories: TV Tags: