Wednesday, December 31, 2008

More thoughts on Lil' Wodie

Some very weird thoughts I've had lately are that I am going to be a mom. And Travis is going to be a dad. And we are going to have a son. Putting those thoughts into words, out loud, sounds so strange.

On December 10th, we had the first ultrasound for the nuchal translucency test. This tests for genetic abnormalities and so far everything looks good! I go back again in a couple weeks for the second test to compare the growth over time. I'm confident that everything will be fine. They were able to tell the sex (and the little man couldn't keep his hands off himself, confirming his sex by showing that he is already exhibiting male tendencies), count his 10 fingers, and see the legs, arms and full facial profile.

It's amazing to think I have a little human inside of me. At that ultrasound, he was about five centimeters long, approximately the size of a large plum. We also got to hear his heartbeat for the first time. 169 beats per minute! A little fast, but they said the younger they are, the faster the heartbeat can be.

Another hilarious thing that we witnessed was Lil' Wodie peeing! Then he gulped in amniotic fluid. I'm trying not to think about that too much. It was a weird thing to be privy to. We are already violating his privacy and he's not even out of the womb yet!

I'm a little freaked out about having to take care of him after the circumcision. It's such a sensitive time and I want it to be as easy as possible for the little guy. Oi, I'm worried about him already.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Internet, I'm Pregnant!

Yup, that's right! Travis and I decided that our New Year's resolution for this year is to be good parents. We are expecting our first child to come into the world somewhere around June 22nd. As of yesterday I am 15 weeks along in the gestation process.

We found out when I was only four weeks prego, so this has been some pretty hard stuff to hold back from my family, friends and the blogging community. We decided to wait to tell our parents until we could tell them in person and properly accept hugs and the exclamations of joy. Now that they know, and all our closest friends know, I felt it was time to announce it on my blog. Weehoo!!

We found out the sex, but in the name of fun, we've decided not to tell anyone the name of our baby until he is born. We're having a son! In the meantime, we're calling him Lil' Wodie. We went with this name because Wodie is a play on Travis' last name that became his nickname in high school. Now that we both have the same last name it only seems fitting that we call the wee one Lil' Wodie.


Thing I Like The Least About Pregnancy Thus Far: a raging case of acne.

I was trying to think when the last time was that I had acne this bad, but I honestly cannot remember it ever being like this. Which causes me to think this is the worst case of acne I've ever had. Although the lack of humidity up here is definitely helping out matters. I know that I should not be complaining because some people have it so much worse than I do. And it could be a raging case of morning sickness. I've been lucky so far with only mild nausea for the most part. I did vomit once when I was maybe 6 or 7 weeks along, but that was it.

Thing I Like The Most About Pregnancy Thus Far: my growing bust line.

I'm pretty sure I've gone up a cup size and I KNOW that this is Travis' favorite part of my pregnancy so far. It really is amazing how much they can grow. And supposedly they are only going to get bigger! I've put off buying a new bra because I want to make sure I get one that I will fit for the longest time period. For now, I'm busting out of the bras I do have and I LOVE it.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

One Last Kink

When Travis went to pick up the Murano last night, he was happy to find out that the repair was completely covered under warranty. How often does that happen?! Phew!

About a mile and a half from the dealership, the jerky-lurchy thing started happening again, but WORSE. Travis immediately flipped the car around and called Josh to tell him he would be returning with the car. Irritated, he pulled right up to the garage door. The technician ran out to pop the hood. After a quick inspection, it was obvious that the air intake piping had come unattached from the engine.

When he tried to reattach it, the piping would not easily fit back into place. Either the rubber had become hardened over time, or our model had a crappy version of the piping. There was another Murano in the shop, so Josh went over and took the same part from that car and put it into ours. That one had soft piping that easily fit into the engine.

"You're good to go!" Josh said.

Travis next question seemed reasonable, "What's that guy gonna do without this part?"

"Oh, I can just order a new one and have it in place when they come to pick it up on Monday," was his reply.

Ha! Good deal! We didn't have to wait a whole weekend for them to receive the part, and that guy gets a new piece to his engine for free! Although, I'm starting to wonder where that mass flow sensor came from that they just happened to have in stock for us...

Oh ya and PS - there is a flipping tornado watch here this morning. I woke up to thunder. THUNDER. And then quickly checked the forecast. It is mysteriously 60°F with rain, lightning and wind gusts up to 33 mph. What is up with this weather?!

I do not for a second miss the possibility of tornadoes when we lived in this area, but I do miss the rain storms. It's just not the same right next to the ocean.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Bad Timing

Ugh. The Murano broke down. On the day before Christmas Eve. SO ANNOYING. Luckily we didn't have anywhere to go on Christmas Eve so we just stayed at my mom's house the whole time.

We aren't exactly sure what happened to the vehicle, but Travis thinks it might have something to do with a puddle he drove through in the country. I've driven through plenty of puddles in Galveston (notorious for it's flooding), so that can't be the only factor. Maybe the water freezing on the engine so quickly that it didn't have a chance to dry off had something to do with it? Not sure. But the car wouldn't idle when put into park. It just died.

Then today when we went to pick it up to bring it to the dealership (first day they've been open since the fiasco began) it would idle, but accelerating from 0 to 30mph took about half a minute of jerking and lurching to complete. Each intersection we drove through to get to the dealership was agony. I think we were the only car to make it through the light each time. I was grateful when we finally made it to our destination.

This is obviously not a good time to have the car break down on us. We sort of need to get back to Texas in a week. Plus, we've got about a million people to visit prior to then. This is such a pain in the ass.

On the night of Christmas Eve, my mom let us borrow her car to get to my dad's place. We left the Murano in her garage to "thaw out". We stayed at my dad's until 2pm on Christmas Day, when we drove to Travis' mom's house. Today, we returned the loaner to my mom and took the car to the dealership. Travis' step-dad, Rich, picked us up and we all went out to lunch at Papa Del's (the best stuffed pizza I've ever had). It was a nice distraction from the possible insane costs in our future. The guy at the dealership told us that if it is water damage it will not be covered under our warranty.

We got lucky. Our technician is AWESOME and did not mention the possibility of the water damage to the warranty people. It turns out it the mass flow sensor (monitors fuel flow) needed to be replaced, and the problem might not have been related to the puddle at all. Travis and his mom are gone right now. They left to pick up the vehicle and pay the deductible.

I am just amazed that they were able to diagnose and fix the vehicle in ONE DAY. The dealership back home has never been able to master that feat. It's always one day to diagnose, several days to order and receive the part, and another day to repair. I may just have to rub this experience in their face so maybe our dealership will get their butts in gear. Hooray for Josh, the Best Technician Ever!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Ice Storm


This tree is in front of my mom's garage. When we got home around 4 this afternoon, we easily pulled the car into the garage. Good thing we beat gravity's attack on the tree.



We finished the Christmas tree and put a bunch of the presents underneath. My brother is still wrapping in the other room as I type. Check out mi Madre's new do.


Ariel wrapped up Toby to put under the tree.


My dad is notorious for his inability to be photogenic. Here he is smiling off at some imaginary friend in the next room. Ariel helps balance out the beauty of this photo. This is a quick peak at my dad's new apartment.

Freezing Rain

I spent all afternoon store hopping with my mom and sister while they finished up their Christmas shopping. It was horrible because there was freezing rain, complete with slushy puddles to welcome us in each parking lot. I am so glad I bought new gloves and ear warmers! And thank you Sara for the new homemade scarf. ;)

I did buy a little for Travis since I found some great deals. We planned not to buy each other anything, but I couldn't resist. We might buy something big for the house when we get back to Texas, depending on the financial situation.

Alex, Travis and Robert went shopping separately and they are still not back yet. I'm working on putting the Christmas tree up with my mom at the moment. Just in time, right? Ariel is wrapping presents and working on a gift her and Robert are making for Alex.

We're having a ham for dinner and then spending all day tomorrow celebrating Christmas with my mom. I am so excited!!! I hope everyone has a great holiday.

Monday, December 22, 2008

It's Frickin Cold People!

Wow, it's cold here. It's been hovering around 0°F since we got here. Right now it is 3°F with a windchill of 15°F. This is insane. Travis has been questioning our decision to move back here in a few years. I hope he is joking. This is pretty miserable weather though. I keep trying to compare it to the stifling, humid heat of Galveston, TX in the middle of summer. I'm having trouble convincing myself that the heat is worse at this point.

Yesterday, I needed to run up to the store to grab a couple items for making Christmas cookies. Alex wanted to show off his car and told me he would drive me. We ran out to his car and tried to jump in quickly to escape the wind, but were unsuccessful. The locks were frozen. After we were able to break through that ice, the doors themselves were frozen shut. After a minute of trying, Alex got his door open. He hopped inside and pushed the inside of the passenger door while I pulled from the outside. We FINALLY got it after another minute (felt like hours) of pushing and pulling.

After all that, it took him a moment to get the car started. I think a combination of the ridiculous temperatures and his car being old made it slow to start. He finally got it running, grabbed the scraper and hopped back outside to take care of the windshield. Alex had left his gloves in his bedroom, so his fingers quickly went numb, but he managed to get a big enough circle scraped out so we could drive. The whole time he was working on the windshield I had to hold his door shut because the latch was now stuck open. Alex ended up having to lock the door to get it to stay closed for the drive to the store.

It only took five minutes to get to the store (not worth walking to in this weather), so the car wasn't even warm yet. The excitement really started when we tried to get out of the car. I got out fine, locked and closed the door. Alex could not get his door to unlock, so he tried my door. I'm thinking the locks were sticking a little in the cold and his fingers were too numb to work properly. We ended up having to roll down the window so he could give me the keys. I had to use the keys from the outside while he pulled the lock on the inside. It took another five minutes, before Alex was able to escape from his car.

We were only inside the store for a little while. Unfortunately, we didn't think to leave the door unlocked when we left the car. When we got back out, we had the same problem, only this time there was no one on the inside of the car to throw their shoulder into the door. We decided to go back inside and call our dad to come back with a crow bar. We didn't know what else to do. While we were standing there, I asked Alex if he can get from his trunk into the car if he pushed the back seats down. He wasn't sure if the seats were latched, but he thought it was worth the try. I stayed inside with the groceries while he ran back out to the car. When I saw his head pop up on the inside of the car, I ran out to meet him. Ha!

We were still unable to get the door unlocked, so I had to throw the groceries in through the window and climb in through the trunk too. When I got into the back seat I said, "Who's gonna close the trunk?!" I had to lay down in the little trunk, find a hole to pull the trunk down, and yank it down hoping the entire time that I didn't get my hair or head caught somewhere. I made it into the back seat again, alive and well. A family in an SUV drove by and gave us a nasty glare. It must have looked like we were stealing the car. I was unable to get the car unlocked with my not-yet-frozen fingers.

Let's just say I was VERY thankful to get back into the delightfully wonderful heat of my dad's apartment.

Friday, December 19, 2008

We Leave Tomorrow!

Only one day left until we make the trip home. Yay! Thankfully, it will be a busy day. Well, maybe not this morning, but the rest of it will be busy. I have a short day of work - I get to leave at lunch time. Then I'm going straight to the chiropractor for my last adjustment for three weeks. Eek.

My appointment was originally scheduled for Wednesday, but I left my checkbook at home so I had no form of payment. One of the many annoyances that Ike left behind is many businesses are without a credit card machine. I'm not quite sure why, because some places do have them now. My chiropractor's office is still in shambles. When I went two weeks ago, there was no drywall on the bottom four feet of all the walls. He has one table that is set up at the back of the practice, partitioned off by plastic tarps to prevent dust buildup on everything. I'm interested to see how much has been completed since then.

After the chiro, I'm going to stop by the house to pick up Callaway and his myriad of belongings, before bringing him to Hotel Godiva. Chris and Alexa have graciously offered to watch him while we are gone and I know Callaway will have so much fun. Not only will he have Godiva, but Alexa's brother is coming with his kids. Callaway LOVES kids. Especially if they like to throw a ball or play tug-o-war. =) I am a little bummed that I won't get to meet all of them though.

When I get back to my house I am going to do some last minute cleaning (dishes, put out the trash, anything that might leave a stench if left unattended for two weeks, etc.) and load my remaining stuff into the car. Then I'm off for Ariel and Robert's! We are staying the night there before leaving in the morning, since they live closer to the ferry docks.

I'm getting a little nervous about the weather in Illinois. There was a winter storm last night, so my brother's school was cancelled today. Unfortunately for him, he didn't find that out until he had driven all the way to the school. It is supposed to rain today and then get back down into freezing temperatures tonight. I'm hoping there will be plenty of time to salt the roads before we drive into town tomorrow night! It's supposed to be 11°F on Sunday. YIKES. I just keep telling myself, "Winter Wonderland. Winter Wonderland. Winter Wonderland..."

Thursday, December 18, 2008

It's gonna be 20 degrees when we get to Illinois!

Ahhhh! Only two days until we leave for Illinois!! I'm anxious to see the destruction on Bolivar Peninsula at the beginning of our drive. I had trouble wording that because I don't want it to seem like I am excited to see the destruction of so many people's homes, but we drive this way every time we go to Illinois. It will be interesting to compare the area before and after Ike.

I haven't been over to Bolivar yet for a number of reasons. One is that the ferry was closed for weeks after the hurricane. Two, even after it did open, it was only available for Bolivar residents. And three, I know the majority of the area was completely wiped out. No houses. Gone. Everything leveled. I even heard that there is only one school left standing. I figured that recovery efforts would be filling the streets as it is and I didn't want to add to the crowd.

I have already checked with the ferry system and they are running two out of the three ferries at this point. That means they come about every thirty minutes. That is still faster than driving through Houston traffic and around Galveston Bay. I have also clarified that the road that runs from Bolivar to I-10 (the main interstate heading to New Orleans) is intact. I sort of freaked out when I realized that the hurricane may have hindered our trip, so I'm happy to see we are still taking the normal route this year.

I CAN'T WAIT TO GET ON THE ROAD! I'm driving first. I usually do because I'm a morning person and I function best first thing in the morning. When it gets close to lunch time, and definitely after lunch, I get sleepy easily. I like to drive first, then take a nap, so I'm ready for my next turn at the wheel. Thankfully, my time at the wheel will be minimum since we'll have four drivers sharing the trek north. Yay!

Last night I asked Ariel if Robert has a winter coat to wear while we are in snow country. Turns out, he doesn't! They are hoping to buy him a coat this week, but they are quickly running out of time. Travis offered to loan Robert his coat if he doesn't make it to the store in time. At least they have that option. It's funny because I already had to buy gloves and ear warmers because my cold-weather clothing has dwindled to almost nothing in the six years I've been in Texas. We have not had to worry about this for three years because we've celebrated Christmas here. Weird how you forget about simple stuff like that.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Turtle Crawl

Sorry things have been a little slow lately. Travis and I have been trying to keep our spending to a minimum what with the upcoming holidays and the road trip to Illinois. Plus, Travis has been working his butt off since he started working residential electrical again. The hurricane damage in Galveston seems to be never ending. He doesn't usually get home until between 7:30 and 8:30 every night. I've been taking advantage of that time to run errands (pick up my prescription, buy groceries, go to the chiropractor, etc) and to catch up on the shows I've recorded on the DVR. Since I spent this past weekend reading The Host, I didn't do much TV watching. Hence the DVR backup.

I've also recently developed an addiction to Solitaire. I found it in the games folder on our laptop and I love the new features it has! I can right-click anywhere on the screen and it automatically sends any cards that are showing to the suit pile. Exciting, right? I'm totally digging it. Sara came by last week and even made a comment about how every time she comes over I'm playing that game. I should probably start attending SA meetings. You know - Solitaire Anonymous.

Work is excruciatingly slow this week. We finished all the projects we could before the holidays and we've killed off all our cells. Now it's just wait-it-out for the rest of the week. There's not even the chance my boss might come in with a last minute task because he's leaving for home this morning (he lives four hours away and goes home for the weekends and holidays).

I do have a work luncheon to look forward to today. A girl in one of our sister-labs is leaving for Japan, so we are throwing her a going-away lunch. Sad reason, happy event. On top of all this boredom, is the Vacation Factor. What I am talking about here is how time seems to slow to a turtle crawl the week before a vacation. It's like it just can't come fast enough.

I haven't even had Rachel around much lately for company in the lab because the house she was renting foreclosed this past weekend. Now she has 30 days from this past Saturday to figure out where she is going to live, and then move there. She's run into three HUGE road blocks with this situation.

One, she will be going home to stay with family for two weeks, starting this Saturday. That gives her two weeks, including the one we're in the middle of right now, to find an apartment and move into it.

Two, we just had this hurricane that knocked a lot of apartment complexes and rental houses temporarily out of business. Not only does she have limited options because of that, but she also has to deal with the fact that any places that weren't closed down by the storm are already inhabited by people misplaced by the hurricane.

And three, EVERYONE has raised their rent around here. Either because times are hard and they need more income, or because they just completely remodeled because of hurricane flooding or damage. It's all so overwheming. She is definitely in a tough pickle...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Another Must Read

After reading the Twilight series, Rachel and I both felt a void in our lives. Somehow the author sucks you into the lives of these fictional characters to the point that you don't want it to end. Granted, she does have a knack for good endings, so despite this need the story does seem final. We heard that Stephanie Meyer had written another book since Breaking Dawn (the 4th book) called The Host.

This book is about an alien force that takes over Earth via body snatching method. Rachel was interested in the book, so she bought it for her flight home for Thanksgiving. She liked it so much that she had it finished by the time she got back to Texas. Graciously, she loaned the book to me and oh my gosh it's almost as good as the Twilight books. Possibly just as good. It is amazing how she can make me like the aliens that are taking over the world.

If you've read and enjoyed the Twilight books, then I definitely recommend this to those readers. If you haven't, but you're up for a little science fiction/romance (strange combo, I know), this is also the book for you.

I tried to keep the book at work and just read it during lunch to help pass the time. Come Friday, I was unable to leave the book unattended ALL WEEKEND, so I brought the thing home with me. I'm going to remind you that Travis gets jealous of books when I spend more time reading than with him. This was one of those times, although I did make sure to put down the book once in a while to spend some time with him. ;)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Pre-Christmas Celebration

Only 9 days until Christmas, people! And guess what? I finished my Christmas shopping! I had a few random items that I needed to pick up and I took care of that on Saturday. I also managed to fit in cleaning the house. I'm hoping we can keep it semi-clean for this week so that MAYBE we'll be able to come home to a clean house after Christmas. I say maybe because my cats will still be here and there is no telling what they'll do to trash the house - throw a party, late night binging. You know, the norm.

No, seriously. Cats can be pretty destructive. Especially after two weeks of minimal contact. Sara will be taking care of the kitties and our fish, but they always get rowdy when we're gone for long periods of time. I expect to find numerous hair balls around the house (they build up quicker when Callaway isn't around to clean up after them), maybe a broken candle holder or two and most likely all of our throw rugs will be in a pile. I don't know what it is about throw rugs, but for some reason my cats always seem to think there is something under them. They will have the rugs turned inside out and upside-down before the realize there isn't actually anything underneath. Damn cats.

Callaway will be staying with Godiva at Chris and Alexa's house. I know they would have watched him anyway, but I'm trying to think of it as an exchange for hanging out with Godiva during the hurricane evacuation. It seems too good to be true to not have to spend $15 per night for a boarding kennel that will only take him out twice a day to pee. This is The Best Place for him to stay. He'll have lots of attention and another big dog to harass the whole time. I expect Callaway to have lost 10 pounds by the time we get him back with all the exercise he'll be getting. I feel sorry for Godiva already. Poor old man.

After all the cleaning and shopping on Saturday I set up a little holiday wrapping party for Travis and I, complete with Christmas music, hot chocolate and gift wrapping. Good times. I learned already that it is a bad idea to wrap any presents that we are bringing home to Illinois. They will only get destroyed in the transport. Instead, we just wrapped everything we needed for here (mostly gifts for all the babies in our life) and put together holiday goodie bags.

The rest of the weekend was pretty laid back. Travis and I have done a lot of laying down lately. Working six days a week takes a lot out of Travis and I can't help but be sucked into the laziness when he's home. It's not fair that I be running around having all the fun when he's sitting on his ass at home, right?

Sunday evening we went up to Chris and Alexa's for a pre-Christmas celebration with them, Alexa's parents and a couple other friends. Diane (Alexa's mom) made an awesome Christmasy dinner that we all enjoyed immensely. What better way to finish a holiday celebration than to watch Tropic Thunder?! LOL! It was actually kind of funny. We saw the first half of it at a drive in theater, but we weren't supposed to be watching it. After the movie, we turned the cars around, changed the radio station for sound and watched Tropic Thunder on a far-off screen. It was getting late and everyone was cranky, so we didn't watch the rest of the film. I'm glad we were able to watch it again, because I would never have rented it for just Travis and I.

Only five days until we leave for Illinois!!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Chaos in Baghdad

What was this guy trying to accomplish here? Make sure to watch the video on the left hand side of the screen, about halfway down the article.

President Bush makes final visit to Iraq

Friday, December 12, 2008

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The White Fluffy Stuff

It was a cold day in Galveston yesterday. I wore everything I own to keep me warm and I was still a little chilly. I could see my breath! I think the main problem lies in the fact that the temperature was hovering just above freezing and therefore it was raining, not snowing. The crappy thing about rain and cold together is that the water soaks into your clothes. Especially when for some reason it never rains straight down here - it's usually at least a 45 degree angle, ensuring complete saturation from the knees down IF you have an umbrella that can withstand turning inside out from the wind. Ya, the cold is not very fun here. Not that it is super enjoyable anywhere else, but at least in Illinois the air is dry enough that you can endure standing outside for more than a few minutes.

The rumor all day was that it would snow last night. And guess what?! IT DID! It snowed! At my house and all the way down to Galveston (Ariel confirmed that). I was on the computer when Travis starts screaming "It's snowing, it's snowing!" I ran out into the living room to see that he was watching the weather on the news. What?! Forget the weather forecast - look out the window! Sure enough...




It may not have stuck much to the ground, but it was still an exciting night in southeast Texas!


My poor oleanders!


I wonder if Travis will need to scrape his windshield before going to work?


We had snow on the roof of our house!


Travis' breath is still hovering to the left of him in this photo.



I don't think Callaway was excited about the snow as we were.

It was almost as exciting as the White Christmas in Galveston that we missed in 2004. The sad thing about that year is that it didn't snow the entire time we were in Illinois. So everyone back here in Texas had their snow fix, but we missed it.

When I saw the snow, we immediately ran over to JR and Sara's house to share the news. Sara was also not quite as ecstatic about the white fluffy stuff as I was. She was thinking about driving her paper route for hours with the windows rolled down. I'd have to agree that didn't sound very appealing. I started taking photos and then turned the task over to Travis when it got too cold for me to stand anymore. I've turned into a weenie. Alex told me it's sort of a warm up (no pun intended) for our trip to Illinois in nine days. I can't wait!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Debt

I'm tired of all these bail outs. Seriously? How is it going to help out our federal debt to be giving all these companies money? Besides, if these companies are having the same financial problems that the rest of America is, can we, as the individual, ask for a bail out? It was a nice mini-bonus for groceries and gas, but that stimulus check we received doesn't quite compare to these million-dollar bail outs.

Where's MY money?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Coldplay vs. Joe Satriani

I was disappointed when I heard the news that Coldplay may have ripped off a song from Joe Satriani. I'm not one to judge, because who knows? There are so many songs out there nowadays that I can imagine it's hard to come up with something completely original. This one is a little too similar to be random. What do you think?


I LOVE Coldplay. I actually just bought this CD because I loved Viva La Vida when I heard it on the radio. It's Milli Vanilli all over again...

Monday, December 8, 2008

Another Lazy Weekend

Not much happened this weekend. Travis got home from work late, but not as late as usual. We had time to discuss some Christmas plans and go over the remaining gifts we need to buy. I'm super excited because Travis found out a work buddy of his is going to loan us an adapter for charging a laptop in a car. That way we can watch movies during the ride to Illinois. Hooray for entertainment!

Saturday Travis had to work all day. I sat on my bum for most of the morning and then got ready to head up to Chris and Alexa's. I hung out with them for a few hours before they had to go to a baby shower. I left and drove over to Kai and Melinda's house. They made plans to bring the kids to the local Christmas parade and I decided to tag along. I haven't seen Kai's kids in a few months. Every time I see them I am amazed at how much they have grown! I think they are four and seven years old, so neither of them are babies anymore. They are little talking people. Crazy.

We parked at Melinda's friend's house for the parade since she lives a block from the street that it goes down. The kids brought their mini-chairs so we set those up to save our spot on the street before heading into the wine bar to grab drinks. Sadly, getting there two hours prior to the parade meant nothing when it came to saving our spot. When the floats started going by a new row of kids and parents formed in the road. We worried that someone would get run over, but luckily that never happened!

I was a little disappointed with the parade itself. None of the floats were very exciting and there were five to ten minute gaps between some of the floats. We actually left before the parade was over because it was taking so long and it was so cold. The parade started at 6:30 and Travis was able to see a good portion of it because he got there at 7pm. After another hour or so we tried to go to the Christmas festival that had been set up across the street, but were quickly disappointed to find that no one had any cash and there wasn't an ATM machine anywhere near the festival. Kai and Melinda promised the kids they would go back on Sunday and we left early to go find food.

Because it was so late by this point it took two tries before finding a Mexican restaurant that was open. Travis and I shared a platter since I had already eaten dinner and just needed a snack. Melinda wanted to get chicken tortilla soup for Railey, but they didn't have it! When we asked what soup they did have, the waitress said "beef". Just "beef". Melinda risked ordering it and sure enough, Railey refused to eat it when they set a bowl filled with whole vegetables and some gigantic chunks of circular beef. Not sure what part of the cow it was, but it was freaky.

Sunday, Travis and I slept in. Then Travis grabbed served us breakfast in bed while we read our books for an hour. It was so nice. I spent the rest of the day alternating between taking care of a few random chores around the house and playing solitaire on my computer. I think I'm addicted to that game. In the afternoon we went for a walk with Callaway. We had planned to stop by the park to throw the ball for Callaway, but decided to end things early when we were attacked by mosquitoes halfway through our stroll.

On Friday I was so disappointed to find the video store in Galveston to still be closed down since the hurricane. But then my spirits were lifted when I saw a Redbox rental at Alexa's house. Sunday morning, Travis and I ran up the street to the McDonald's that has a Redbox and rented Kung Fu Panda. It was pretty cute; it actually made me laugh out loud several times.




I couldn't resist this photo opportunity with the kitties. SO CUTE! Anyhoo, only two weeks til we go to Illinois!!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Christmas is coming

TGIF. Not that it was a bad week, but I am tired and ready for the weekend! And I miss Travis! I feel like I have not seen him all week. I'm hoping we get to spend tonight together. Even if it's just an easy night at home with dinner and a movie. We started our meal in the crock pot this morning, so we'll be able to take the night off from any heavy cooking. I think I'm still a little burnt out from Thanksgiving.

I have almost completed my Christmas shopping. Travis and I went gung-ho on Amazon.com, only leaving a few random items to be picked up at stores. I was unsure about our purchase when I saw the shipping fees would be $88. I changed my mind when I thought about what a deal we got on most of the gifts online, and the fact that I would have to drive all over the place to find the best deals in a store (increase in costs due to gas spent). Plus, it only comes down to $6 per gift. That's not bad, right? RIGHT? Ugh, whatever. It's done.

Our families have been calling us to start making plans for while we are in Illinois. This is the part I hate. I LOVE visiting everyone, but I HATE figuring out when to visit everyone. Our two limiting factors are that Chrissie will be out-of-state for the first week we are there, so I have to hang out with her the following week. I HAVE to meet Audrey. =) The second limiting factor being that Ariel and Robert are planning to only be in Illinois for the first five days. The rest of the time they will be visiting Robert's family in Michigan. That means we have to find some time together to spend with our parents in the first few days we are there. It's gonna be messy. I guess I'll have to get on that whole planning thing this weekend. The fam is getting restless...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Radiator Ass

Travis and I had another night of giddy laughter last night before bed when I let him know that he has been sleeping close to me at night. This is not normal. Travis generally has a body temperature of 150 degrees when he is sleeping, so I'm lucky if I get to rest my head on his shoulder for five minutes as I fall asleep. Usually we both end up on his side of the bed because I am cold and move toward the warmth and he is hot and moves away from the warmth. Hence, half of Travis' body hangs off our bed onto Callaway's bed. Travis endearingly calls me Radiator Ass. I had to explain to him that he is the Radiator and I have the Ass. Lately, this night time struggle has not been the case. For the most part, Travis and I have both been sleeping like rocks recently. But when I do wake up, it's usually because I have an elbow in my face or a knee in my stomach. It's the strangest thing. I have to physically push Travis off of me and over towards his side of the bed so I'M not the one falling off the bed. I guess now I understand his occasional irritation with me in the mornings.

After the recap, and laughing giddily for a few minutes, Travis got back up out of bed to make popcorn and I was out like a light. We left a few windows open last night, making the room perfect sleeping temperature. I closed the windows this morning because it's supposed to be in the 50's all day. Right now it's actually 48 degrees and cloudy! I like the chilly weather when I am prepared for it with a proper coat, gloves and scarf. I told Travis we have to go shopping for cold-weather-gear before heading to Illinois for Christmas. I already had to buy gloves, but after walking from my car to my work building, I realized that I will definitely need some sort of ear-cover for the wintry weather of central Illinois.

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I got some funny news this morning. Funny, because no one got hurt. My brother had his first car "accident" this morning. Nothing serious. He and my dad were backing out of the garage this morning at the same time and Alex swerved somehow to get around my dad. The result was the driver's side ramming into the garage door jamb. They are both fine and the car runs fine, despite it's old age.

I was reminded of my first car crash. Honestly, I've never been in a serious accident before - as a driver or a passenger (knock on wood). My first accident as a driver was when I was borrowing my dad's girlfriend's car for the first (and last) time ever. I was backing out of the mall parking lot with angled parking spaces. Incidentally, so was another woman directly across the aisle from me. Unfortunately, neither of us saw each other and we backed right into one another. Somehow the car I was driving managed to ride up on her bumper. Not sure what to do, I pulled back into the spot and off of her car. I jumped out to assess the damage, but couldn't find anything wrong with either of our cars. I was shaken, but fine and so we headed home without exchanging insurance information.

Big mistake. When I had a chance to cool down and tell my dad's girlfriend what I had done, we headed out so she could look at the car. Sadly, she found a scrape that I had not noticed. Both her and my dad were angry with me for not being more careful and for not exchanging insurance info, but it didn't last long. One thing's for sure, I never asked to borrow her car again!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Weekend Photos

I kept forgetting to load what few pictures I did take this weekend, so here they are!


Blair stares on as Wednesday drinks her milk from a sippy cup. We met Stephanie and David for dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings.


Saturday night we were hanging out in the living room when I realized that Wednesday seemed to be slowly be disappearing behind David. Lo and behold! She was being eaten by the couch!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

No Belly Button?

Ok, so I thought this was weird. One of the Victoria's Secret models doesn't have a belly button. Check it out for yourself.


Oh and I finally started some Christmas shopping... online!

Monday, December 1, 2008

NEED TO GO CHRISTMAS SHOPPING

I LOVE long weekends, but for some reason they never seem long enough. It's probably because I try to cram too much into each day that I never get much of a chance to rest. Travis and I both had Thursday through Sunday off from work, which was quite a treat since Travis usually works every day except Sunday. And even then he sometimes works Sundays.

Thanksgiving was great. I spent all day preparing for the big meal and then cooking everything. I was in charge of the turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean casserole, stuffing and rolls. Everyone else filled in the gaps for me. The food was so good. I think I ate all day long. From the appetizers starting at 2pm until pumpkin pie at 7pm. I cannot remember what time everyone left by, but I know it was not late. I was worn out from being on my feet all day and then stuffing myself with delicious food, so I was ready for bed when everyone left. Travis wasn't quite ready to call it a night so he went over to Sara and JR's to hang out with them and Sara's family, who were in town.

Friday morning I got up at a pretty decent time since I had gone to bed so early the night before. We expected David, Stephanie and Wednesday around 1pm, so we didn't plan to do anything except clean up from Thanksgiving and relax. David and Stephanie spent Thanksgiving in Dallas with her step-mom and they had a late start to our house. They ended up not getting in town until dinner time, so we met them at Buffalo Wild Wings for the evening meal. Alexa and Chris brought Blair to greet Wednesday. After dinner we went over to Chris and Alexa's for a few hours before heading back to our house to unload their bags and all Wednesday's gear. It always amazes me how much stuff is required when you have a baby. I'm thankful Travis and I invested in some larger vehicles so we will be ready when the time comes!

Saturday we had a big breakfast at home and then drove to Galveston so they could check out all the old haunts. David and I went to college together and Stephanie had lived in the area since she was a teenager. They found the destruction depressing. Beyond the damage, the place seems so dirty because of the mud and trash all over the place. We drove out to the west end and Travis took a picture of David next to a house on the beach. The sand erosion is so severe that the concrete slab where the owner's used to park their car is now five feet above the ground.



That evening Travis and I had a wedding to attend for a guy I work with. While we were there David and Stephanie headed out to do some Christmas shopping. Stephanie always complains that there are no places to shop near where they live, so they were excited to take advantage of all the prime shopping locations around here.

Travis and I left the wedding after the ceremony to spend some more time with Wednesday and the bunch. It was so funny because they brought this colorful, little "fence" that can be set up anywhere in the house to prevent a baby from getting into things they are not supposed to. We called it baby jail. They just threw a bunch of her toys in there and she seemed content.

Sunday morning Travis made breakfast before everyone got back on the road. He made turkey omelets. I'm kind of over the turkey thing at this point. Although I'm still digging the leftover mashed potatoes and gravy. Brought some more for lunch today. =D I pretty much laid on the couch for the rest of the day while Travis ran up to Chris and Alexa's to get a couple of their old cabinets. He plans to put them in the garage for closed storage space and counter top space. He mentioned putting in a sink too, but I'm not sure if that will really happen or not.

Last night we went up to Kai's house for dinner. Which is actually Kai and Melinda's house because she moved in a few weeks ago. Everything seems to be going smoothly. Melinda seems to have supplied everything Kai didn't have, so the house is complete now. Jenna came over for a little while too, but she had to leave early. I helped Melinda wrap Christmas gifts for the kids, which made me feel pretty incompetent since I still have EVERYONE to shop for. Guess I better get on that!