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July 30, 2008

Texas Part II/New Mexico

We were up and on the road around 9:00 a.m. We drove to El Paso to our hotel, but Gabe didn't like the area, so he canceled the reservation and we kept driving. We are staying in Las Cruces, New Mexico. We just came back from a swim in the pool. Nothing too exciting has been going on...which is good. We finished the Portable Professor Series Foundations of Western Thought: Hebrews, Greeks, and Romans. We will be in Arizona tomorrow! A little more than three months and we will have our house!

July 29, 2008

Texas Part I

We headed off to Texas this morning after a couple of delays. Fortunately there wasn't too much excitement. My car was scheduled to be delivered July 31 at the earliest and most likely by the 1st of August. Well, we received a phone call today while we were driving somewhere in the middle of Texas. The delivery service informed us that the car was going to be delivered in about 2 hours. Umm...we were in the middle of Texas, not Arizona. So, Gabe started calling people to find someone that could accept delivery of my car. The funny thing is Gabe received an email last night confirming the deliver dates. Oh well, things worked out ok. I think that we are staying in Texas tomorrow too, it is a wide state.

State of Texas at a rest area.

New Harry Potter Trailer

The trailer for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is available on aol. The movie is released November 21.

Happy Birthday!

BD4-tn.gifHappy Birthday Jimmy!BD4-tn.gif

Graphic courtesy of Pat's Web Graphics.

July 28, 2008


Today we drove through more of Illinois as well as Missouri and Arkansas. The Missouri rest area where we stopped had a really neat automatic hand washer/dryer. You hold your hands under the sensor and it squirts soap out, then warm water, and finally a dryer comes on to dry your hands. You just stand there with your hand in the same spot. It was kind of cool.

Automatic hand washer/dryer (the picture doesn't do it justice).

The trip has been uneventful except the truck is packed full and the story below.
Gabe made the reservations for all our hotels about a week or two ago. He called each one instead of making the reservation online to verify each hotels pet policy. Well, this particular hotel stated that there was a $50 pet fee charged per room, not per pet. Gabe said that was fine and went ahead and booked the room. We pulled in the parking lot today and Gabe went inside to check in while I waited in the truck with the dogs. He came back out and said that they don't allow pets, but he was the third person this week to say they were told they could pay an additional fee and have pets stay in the room. So, Gabe and I think that the night people and the day people have different pet policies. Anyway, we found another hotel, not even a mile away. Everything is fine. Off to Texas tomorrow.

July 27, 2008

Illinois Part II

We relaxed a little today and went to eat at 17th Street Bar & Grill. They have won the World Grand Championship 3 times (they are the only place to do it so far). Gabe had never been and it happens to be one of the favorite places to eat for quite a few of my family members. So, we all headed out for lunch. Gabe said they were the best ribs he has eaten. I like the beef brisket.

Gabe & Stephanie at 17th Street.

After eating we came back and went for a swim once the sun went down. I forgot how much I love swimming and having a pool. Then we watched the finale for the Next Food Network Star. I won't say much just in case some of you haven't watched it yet, but I will say I would have picked someone else to win.

July 26, 2008

Illinois Part I

We finally left our house around 5:00 p.m. (5 hours later than scheduled). People kept wanting to look at our house and so we were "kicked out" for around 3.5 hours. We made it to my parent's house after 11:00 p.m. due to a minor detour on the way down. 57 was closed but we only stayed in the traffic jam for about 5 minutes and took the next exit. We used our GPS to find another way home avoiding 57 all together. The good news is it only added 1 minute to the overall trip time.

July 25, 2008


Gabe and I just returned from the Hootie and the Blowfish concert at Ravinia. We are both still working on the house. He is vacuuming and I am taking a short break from packing stuff. I don't see how it will be possible for me to get all of the laundry done. I still need to pack my clothes and then I am done! Another kink was thrown in the system when our Realtor called because someone wants to look at our house tomorrow morning. I think we should have told them either tomorrow evening or Sunday (heck, we are still packing), but Gabe disagreed. So, they are coming tomorrow morning. I hope they don't mind our stuff spread out everywhere. I am not "putting it away" just to drag it back out again. I have already done that once for another showing.
Anyway, the Hootie and the Blowfish concert was a lot of fun. We brought food in from Meson Sabika and had a picnic. Then we walked around the park some and listened to the music. We even worked our way up to see the stage. I really should get back to packing again.

Stephanie & Gabe at Ravinia.


Wednesday evening Gabe and I headed downtown to the city. It was our last hurrah in Chicago. We had dinner at the original Gino's East. In the five years that have lived in Chicago/the Chicagoland area I never quite made it to Gino's (Giordano's was favorite though). We managed to get around the 30-60 minute wait for a table by accepting a seat at the bar instead. All of Illinois restaurants are no smoking now, so I don' mind sitting in the bar area. Well, it turns out there weren't two seats together at the bar so we ended up with a table. We ordered garlic sticks and a pizza. It was pretty good. Surprisingly the pepperoni was very tasty. It has been my experience that Chicagoans generally prefer sausage to pepperoni, thus sometimes the pepperoni is less than desirable. I still prefer Giordano's for deep dish pizza (really I am more of a thin crust person), but Gino's is a pretty good second. After waiting the hour for our pizza and eating we ended up missing the free concert at Millenium park. By missing the concert, we scored a pretty awesome parking spot. We made it just in time to park the car and walk to the lake front to find a spot to watch the fireworks.

Fireworks at Navy Pier.

Next we headed to Buckingham fountain to watch the fountain show to music at 10:00 p.m.

Buckingham Fountain

We headed back to our car around 11:00 p.m. We drove past my school and then past our old residence in the city. That was the end of our Chicago trip.
Yesterday evening we went to the Bavarian Lodge for dinner with Aaron and his sister (Danna). I had the chicken Schnitzel (which I believe is what I had at the Berghoff). I like Schnitzel, what can I say. The food was good and the price wasn't too bad, especially considering the amount of food that was served.

Danna, Aaron, Stephanie, and Gabe at the Bavarian Lodge.

We are going to Ravinia tonight to watch Hootie and the Blowfish. I have a TON of stuff to get done before then...I guess I should get started (it seems the packing isn't completing itself).
For those of you waiting on a reply to an email...I am a little behind (300 or so), but I will respond within the next week or so.

July 21, 2008


Well, I didn't like the crust on the pot pie. Next time I might try adding mainly all-purpose flour and a little wheat. It just wasn't my cup of tea.
Wednesday Gabe and I went to Peoria. He had a business meeting and later in the day we all went out for dinner at Granite City. The garlic mashed potatoes were yummy. Anna (Gabe's mom) and I had an excellent lunch at Pita's Mediterranean Wraps. I love Gyros. One thing that I am going to miss about the Chicagoland area is Greektown. So far it seems that this entire entry is about food.
Our washer and dryer were delivered on Saturday. It is the set that we are taking with us to Arizona. Basically, we are just trying to get everything done for our move. For every one thing I mark off of the list I think that three more go on the list.

July 17, 2008


I cannot post on your site anymore and I want to play!

July 14, 2008


Gabe was mowing our yard on Wednesday. He ran out of gas, so we ran to the gas station to fill up the gas can. We were gone about 10 minutes and we returned home. I went back inside and Gabe came in a few minutes later and said he couldn't find our lawnmower. Apparently someone decided to take it in the 10 minutes we were gone. I believe the individual that "stole" our lawnmower did not think that they were stealing it. Thursday is trash day in our neighborhood, so people frequently drive by to pick up "trash" on Wednesday evening. There are a few things that don't make sense though. There was no other trash or recyclables near the curb and there was a line where the grass was no longer cut. It so happened to stop at the same place the lawnmower stopped. I guess we will be hiring a lawn mowing service (we will not need a lawnmower once we move). Secretly, I think Gabe arranged to have our lawnmower "stolen" so he doesn't have to mow our yard anymore. ;)
Saturday we went to the movies and watched Hellboy II. I remember watching the first one and I found it to be much more entertaining than I had anticipated. The second installment was good. I don't think that I will be watching it again though. I am assuming that there will be a third movie since they conveniently left the ending open where a third installment would not be a crazy thing.
Saturday I made a whole wheat pie crust to use for a chicken potpie. Our menu for the month is a little odd, as I am attempting use up most of our food. I will let you know how the crust turns out.

July 11, 2008

A Few Movies

There hasn't been a whole lot of activity around here other than preparing to move...oh, and laundry. Yesterday Aaron and his sister, Dana, came over for dinner. Gabe grilled hamburgers even though it was storming and hailing outside. We like our grilled food. After dinner we played a little Wii.
I haven't updated our movie watching lately. So here is a list of what we have been watching. We watched Perfume on the plane ride to Arizona. I really wanted to see it mainly because of Alan Rickman. I love his portrayal of Snape in the Harry Potter movies. Back to Perfume. It is the life story of a man that has a very acute sense of smell. So precise that he becomes obsessed with recreating certain scents (especially those of females). I didn't really like it and I wouldn't suggest it, but if it sounds like your type of movie, have fun with it.
Gabe and I watched Committed. It is a comedy starring Heather Graham, Luke Wilson, and Casey Affleck. Heather Graham's character becomes so committed to her broken marriage to Luke Wilson that she blindly follows him across the country. I didn't expect a l lot from this move, but I wasn't disappointed. It wasn't stellar by any means, it is worth a watch if you need a movie to watch.
Gabe and I watched another comedy called Dick. Two girls (Kirsten Dunst and Michelle Williams) become the dog walkers and advisers to President Nixon. Again, I didn't expect a lot from the movie and it wasn't bad.
While at my parent's house we watched Stardust. I enjoyed the movie. It was a fantasy movie about a guy trying to obtain a falling star for a girl he is trying to marry. From my one line summary it sounds like a corny movie, but there is a lot more to it.
We watched No Reservations a little while back. Catherine Zeta-Jones is a chef that becomes the caregiver to her niece after a tragic car accident. She also is on the border of losing her place as the head chef at a restaurant. In opinion, it was okay, but a little cheesy.
We also watched Idiocracy. Umm...my advice is don't watch it. Luke Wilson plays the average Joe. He is part of an army experiment gone wrong and wakes up 500 years later (instead of 1 year). Society has "bred itself dumb" and Joe finds himself the smartest person alive.
I watched Over Her Dead Body yesterday. It was okay. In this comedy, Eva Longoria plays Kate. She is killed on her wedding day and comes back to stop another woman from marrying her husband.
We have also been watching The Next Food Network Star, I Survived A Japanese Game Show, and Wipeout. Well, actually we haven't watched Wipeout yet but it is recorded just waiting to be watched.

Happy Birthday!

BD4-tn.gifHappy Birthday Aaron!BD4-tn.gif

Graphic courtesy of Pat's Web Graphics.

July 8, 2008


I was watching a morning show on TV last week and I found one of the segments pretty interesting. There was a survey (not sure how scientific) to determine the most common passwords. Well, without further ado, here they are...

4. ABC123
2. 123456

July 7, 2008


I hope that everyone had a great Fourth of July weekend. On Tuesday we had a pre-construction meeting for our house. Basically, we verified everything. On Thursday we left to go to my parents for the weekend. The weather was pretty crappy and it ended up taking us over 7 hours to get to their house. Friday we watched the city's fireworks from my brother's front yard. He has a great view. We were going to have a fish fry before the fireworks, but unfortunately someone became very ill and required emergency surgery. As far as I know, they are holding their own. We pretty much spent the time hanging out with family. In the process, we also brought a truckload back of things that we want to take to Arizona with us. We also have our dogs back now. We came back on Sunday morning. Yesterday evening we went grocery shopping...fun, fun. Now I need to start unpacking all of our stuff!

July 4, 2008

Happy Fourth of July!


Graphic courtesy of Pat's Web Graphics.