Tuesday, July 19, 2011

New Phone…

Finally, I am moving into the world of smartphone technology. I grew up with rotary phones, black & white T.V., room size computers (for business only), stingray bikes with sissy bars and banana seats and no central air-conditioning. Young people these days don’t think twice about paying for cells phones and internet service, flat screen televisions and cable. I try to look for the very best deal I can possibly find for anything I want to buy because, I’ll admit it, I am cheap!

Within the last couple of years I started a Facebook Profile and now, darn it, I’m hooked. tsk, oh well, what can I say?! Everyone around me takes photos with their smartphones and uploads them to Facebook. They Google, they Blog, they listen to music, they send email, they play games, they watch Netflix. Well, I can only see something cool for so long before I want it too.

I seem to be easily influenced I guess, because lately I have been doing a little searching for smartphones. I was bound and determined to get an iPhone because I’ve been watching Andy with his and it just looks so cool, and I have an iPod and already know how to use it. Then I got to thinking, what would I do with my iPod??

Ethan’s phone completely died a couple months ago and he couldn’t get another like it without having to pay for it, so he was using my old phone which was about 3 years old. He really wanted this indestructible phone, so when he got some money for graduation, he immediately stopped in to Verizon and bought his phone. Kira has been talking about a new phone for months also because hers just turns off for no reason. She also wanted an iPhone…really bad. I figure if both of them are getting smartphones and they are on my Family Plan, well, I guess I should too.

Because I’ve purchased phones through Wirefly before, they send me emails every now and then. I just happened to get an email last Friday, and I spent some time looking at the different phones they were offering through Verizon for FREE!!! I liked the DROID Incredible 2 by HTC the best, so I forwarded the email to Kira for her to look at also. She was having a difficult time thinking about a phone other than the iPhone, but when she realized it would be FREE instead of $299, she stopped in to the Verizon store, played with a few phones, and became a convert. She agreed the DROID Incredible 2 by HTC would be an agreeable alternative.

I ordered them online and it all seemed to go smoothly, but then, like everything else in my life, there were snags. My phone # was not listed as primary on my Verizon account and instead of the phones being free, they would now be close to $200 each! I was able to stop in to the Verizon store and talk to a real live person and get this snag changed, (after having a little stress induced crying jag).  My phone # is now primary and our phones should be here by the middle of next week. Kira will still have to wait a bit longer than that, because I will have to resend it to her new apartment in Phoenix.  Nothing is simple when you are cheap! hahaha

Here’s a photo of the DROID Incredible 2 by HTC


Monday, July 18, 2011


I have this belief that things happen in threes, especially bad things, you know, a co-worker’s parent dies, a day or two later you hear of another parent’s death and you get real nervous thinking…who’s next?? I tend to not notice when ‘good’ things happen, I’m just so grateful. I think I’ll need to pay closer attention to see if the same pattern applies.

Well, right now I’m waiting for the third thing to happen and I really hope it isn’t too bad.

First off, a friend got a new position at work (which is a ‘good’ thing, for her), the bad part of this is, I knew absolutely nothing about the opening! I was even on vacation at the time. I don’t even know who else, if anyone, applied. This new position has a direct impact on my work, as it is taking a big part of it away from me. I think it would have been nice if someone would have informed me that there was a new position available so I could have made the decision on my own, if I wanted to apply or not. Anyway, it just shows how policy has changed through the years, positions no longer need to be posted in the department. I guess we are supposed to magically Know when there is a new position posted on the Intranet. Hmmm, if we are supposed to be happy with our job, why would we be looking on the Intranet for a new one, during the work day?! I’m a big girl, I will be Okay.

Secondly, my brand new car got rear ended yesterday. There doesn’t appear to be much damage, but my Focus is a light, small car and the car that hit me was a big, heavy 1998 Buick Park Avenue. The 19 year old young man was on his way to work, talking on his cell phone and not paying attention. We were on a bridge with about four cars in front of us, waiting to turn onto 94. We had just picked up our church secretary, Charlene, and were on our way to Costco to pick up a dehumidifier for church (she is a Costco member and church is also tax exempt). David has a fear of getting rear ended, so he always checks in the rearview mirror to make sure the driver sees the brakes lights and is slowing down. He noticed that the young man was on his cell phone and didn’t appear to be slowing, so he swerved into the oncoming traffic lane (thank God there were no cars turning onto the bridge at that moment) to get out of the way and the young man followed us and hit my baby! His story was, he was slowing down and when he saw David swerve, he assumed the car in front of us stopped suddenly, so he followed us so he wouldn’t hit the other car. WELL, if he had actually been slowing down, he wouldn’t have needed to worry about hitting either one of us. I’m glad that David swerved into the other lane, or we would have been slammed into the car in front of us and my baby would be broken. Char called the police and had to argue with the operator to send an officer out. Not sure why, maybe Minneapolis has so many fender benders that they don’t want to waste their time writing reports.

Third, hmmm, I wonder what that will be. Maybe church getting broken into will cover number three. Church has a security system and when the alarms are triggered, the security company calls Charlene, lucky her. The pastor of the Hmong Church that shares our building called Char to tell her a wire had been cut securing the basement courtyard door so he wasn’t able to set the alarms after their service. David was able to splint the wire, after we made the trip to Costco to get the dehumidifier for the church basement. The storm we had Friday night raised the water level enough that water was seeping in through the floor, and while the sump pump was running, a couple of lines had fallen apart and the water was just going back into the basement. Whew! Anyway, they set up the dehumidifier, David fixed the security wire and they were able to set the alarm. We went home with the understanding that Char would call the security company on Monday to check and/or replace the line David was able to fix. Char was awakened at 4:15 a.m. by the security company telling her of a break in. She told them to call the police because there was no one at church at that time of the morning. The police arrived in time to see a body running out of the social hall. A sniffer dog was brought in and able to track the scent to the home of a person of interest. This person later confessed to the break-in, don’t know why he did it. Because David had fixed the basement door security wire, the perp. couldn’t get in through that door, so he took an ax and chopped through a glass block window. Instead of using the same ax on the wooden doors, that were locked, leading to the church’s main floor, he went back outside and broke through the windows of our Pastor’s office. What a mess, what an intrusion, what an invasion. I’m amazed that a person can think that they can just take something that doesn’t belong to them, that they can break into and ruin property that isn’t theirs. So, while this doesn’t directly affect me, except that David was involved, I’m hoping this was number three, because I really don’t want any more bad things to happen.

Friday, July 15, 2011


Blogspot has a new widget for blogs.

Click on Take a quick look…My boring life on one page.

It’s my blog in mosaic form and I think it’s pretty cool.

Friday, July 1, 2011


Last Saturday, after the Jethro Tull concert,

 P1020427  P1020428  P1020430  P1020431  David and I packed up my new car and drove 13 hours to visit Andy in Cincinnati. We had an easy time staying awake, because we were excited to be visiting, even though it had only been three days since he was here visiting us. The Sync in my car works pretty well once you get used to how it works. The voice that answers first is a sweet, nice voice and the voice that gives the actual directions is just a little bit stern. (I think she could take a few pointers!)

We got settled, left David sleeping on the sofa and Andy and I went grocery shopping. I always buy groceries for Kira and I wanted to buy them for Andy too. It was kind of funny trying to get him to put things in the cart. I had to ask, do you need this? do you need that? He thought the Kroger’s was expensive, but they were cheaper than Cub and he had a Kroger’s card which gave him pretty good discount on some items.

There is a hamburger place called Terry’s Surf Club that Andy takes all his visitors to. A tiny little place that makes Great burgers. We had a 45 minute wait, so we grabbed some beers and stood around outside, watching people while Andy took Fat pictures of us. Apparently this is what one looks like after consuming a burger at Terry’s Turf Club!!

photo 3   photo 1   photo 2

After dinner we walked around the Fountain Plaza and had an ice cream. Hmmm, maybe I should have looked at the pictures before the icecream!! Oh, my poor, poor tummy!! 

Monday, we planned to go to the zoo, and we started out, but it began to pour and Andy was feeling crummy. We decided to go back home and let him sleep while David and I did some shopping. We soon got bored shopping and the weather had taken a turn for the wonderful, so we left Andy a note and off we went to the zoo. We are MN Zoo members, so we got 50% off reciprocity on admission…nice! We got about 1/2 way through when Andy called wondering where we were. I told him the zoo was open till 6 and he should come meet us, which he did.

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Earlier in the day, David and I had gone into the Lorikeet exhibit, where all of these beautiful, colorful birds are just flying around free. There are some Keepers in there with birdseed sticks and cups of nectar to give to visitors to feed the birds with. We just watched and took pictures.

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Later when we went back with Andy, all visitors were gone and most of the birds were back in their cages, but the ones that were still out were quite friendly. All you had to do was put out your hand and you had a bird on you.

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Andy got the pleasure too…

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I don’t think he was quite as Okay with it as David was. Notice there are no pictures of me wearing a bird….uh, uh, nope, not for me.

As we were making our way to the exit, we noticed we missed the Children’s Zoo, so we wandered through there and look what was showing off.

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We did see one more animal that wasn’t really a zoo animal, but because I love them and I think they are cute and fun to watch, I took this photo…


Andy made some wonderful chicken, mushroom, tomato pizza with a white sauce and mozzarella cheese. Yum! We watched Pulp Fiction till we couldn’t keep our eyes open any longer.

Tuesday David and I went to the Cincinnati Art Museum specifically to see the Circus Poster’s they had on exhibit. They were pretty cool and I found out that Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey traveled together for a few years. I never knew that. They didn’t allow any photography, so I didn’t get to take any.


The Amazing American Circus Poster
February 26, 2011 – July 10, 2011
Organized by the Cincinnati Art Museum and The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art

Strobridge Lithographing Company
Living Pair of Full Grown Hippopotomi.1882
Color Lithograph Poster
Gift of the Strobridge Lithographing Company, 1965.685:47

Organized by Curator of Prints, Drawings and Photographs, Kristin Spangenberg, The Amazing American Circus Poster features 80 circus posters created between 1878 and 1939, along with materials related to circus advertising.
Cincinnati-based Strobridge Lithographing Company, which created all the posters in this exhibition, and became the leading printer for the major circuses of this time. The posters designed and printed by Strobridge were unrivaled for their quality, and contain a detailed portrait of the American circus in its “Golden Age,” when it flourished as a vital institution for cultural entertainment in this country.
This exhibition will travel to the Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, Florida.
“The Amazing American Circus Poster has been made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Because democracy demands wisdom.”


Tuesday evening we had reservations at Boca, http://www.boca-restaurant.com/which is the restaurant that Andy works at. We started with an appetizer of 

SEARED DAY BOAT SCALLOP ***I had never had brussel sprouts and I don’t care if I ever have them again.
caramelized brussels sprouts, parmigiano regiano
& brown butter truffle vinaigrette

and our entrees were…


mediterranean sea bass, grilled zucchini, zucchini mint salad & lemon oil


lemon arugula risotto & chicken jus

We also had some fabulous wine. Above was all we ordered, but it wasn’t all we got. We got gifted the following…I requested small portions, because I get way too full. We ended up taking 1/2 of our entrees with us and ate them on the drive back to MN.

compressed watermelon, avocado, jalapeƱo & house made ponzu

WOOD FIRED LEMONS                                       
ortiz anchovy, basil, tomato, buffalo mozzarella & grilled bread

linguini pasta, oven roasted tomatoes, cured tuna roe, chili oil,
flat leaf parsley & breadcrumbs

CAPPELLACCI DI MAIS CON TARTUFO NERO  *******My favorite!!! Geez, these little things are addictive!
sweet corn & mascarpone filled house made pasta,
summer truffle & brown butter

Then for dessert, we had an almond cake with berries and an ice cream on top. (Andy will cringe at my description, but it’s not listed on the menu and I can’t remember what all was in it….I just know it was scrumptious) and of course, coffee, wonderful coffee. It was even decaf!!

We got to see the kitchen, which is right there in the open, quite small too with five stations and up to eight people back there at all times. It must be like a ballet when they’re cooking. All I have to say is…if you are ever in Cincinnati, you Must eat at Boca!!

Wednesday we packed up and took a walk downtown, stopping for a bagel and coffee along the way. We ended up at a park in front of P&G building where Andy joined us after he woke up.

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All of the greenery on the arbors are Trumpet Vines. Of course they weren’t in bloom, but I can just imagine what they must look like covered in orange blooms1

We had a wonderful visit! The long, long, drive home was boring and long, but we got fabulous gas millage even with the air on for 1/2 of the trip, 37.5 was the average! So, now I guess we wait until Lauren finds out where they are planning on sending her (hopefully someplace good), then we will have a new place to visit. I do miss him, but at least there are cell phones and Skype.