Saturday, February 21, 2009

Flat Stanley goes to Indiana

My cousin Pam's son Justin (does that make him my 2nd cousin?) had a school project that he enlisted our help in. Justin is in the third grade, and his class recently read the story of Flat Stanley.

Stanley was a regular boy until his bulletin board fell on him and then he became flat. Flat Stanley's wanted to go for a visit with his relatives, so his parents mailed him to California. Justin's class all made their own "Flat Stanleys" and sent them to friends or relatives (in this case my Mom). The friends and relatives had to take care of Stanley for a month and write a letter about all the things he was able to do on his trip. Justin's class specifically requested some information and stories about where we live because the teacher is using these stories to teach about different communities.

Flat Stanley had a pretty good time with us in the last month. He got to go to the Great Wolf Lodge and to the French Lick hotel. He went to the Indianapolis Zoo and spent time with my Mom and her card club. Today, I finished up Flat Stanley's story and I'll send him back through the mail on Monday. All of the kids in Justin's class will read their stories to the class during the first week of March.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

I miss the Gilmore Girls

The Gilmore Girls was my favorite TV show. I happened upon the Gilmore Girls one summer during Season 5 when it seemed I didn't have anything better to do on Tuesday nights. The WB happened to be showing 2 episodes per Tuesday that summer and something happened and I was hooked. That fast talking, how many words can you get in an episode, back and forth between the characters was new and exciting.

So exciting, in fact, that I purchased the Gilmore Girls DVDs for Seasons 1 - 6. I know. I'm 44 years old and buying TV that was originally shown on the WB. So, when Season 7 rolled around, and the new writers were involved, it wasn't quite the same, but yet it was still Stars Hollow growing a little older. I had always been convinced that I didn't see all the episodes in Season 7, so I have netflixed it and started watching tonight. I can't figure out if I came across an episode that I hadn't seen, or if the new writers were so un-Gilmore like that it was unmemorable.

Sometimes there are characters in books that I read that I like so much that I don't want to let them go. I slow down at the end of the book because I know that the characters will end on the last page and I want to prolong their lives. Maybe that is why I'm sometimes drawn to books in a series like the Sue Grafton mysteries. Kinsey Milhone will always be around to solve another crime, at least until Z comes around.

I wonder what has happened to Lorelei and Rory. Sometimes I think of Rory during President Obama's press conferences. Maybe she is sitting in the middle of the room behind Helen Thomas and Chuck Todd. And maybe she was there to offer him that stick of gum just when he needed it.

How Much Can you do in a President's Day Weekend?

Well, let me tell you a lot. Certainly enough that on 4 nights in a row, my 8 year-old nephew announced "I am going to sleep now" before 9:00 p.m. I consider that to be quite an accomplishment.

My brother and sister-in-law went out of town for Valentine's weekend, so I got to be with my valentine Trevor. I picked him up on Friday, right after school. Friday night was kind of uneventful, we just did the regular stuff...walk dogs, play outside (not regular for February, but it was warm!), dinner, watch "Space Buddies", and then off to bed.

Saturday, however, was a different story. I don't usually wake Trevor up when he is at my house. I usually let him sleep in while I attempt to do my normal weekend chores (laundry, dishes, and napping). This Saturday we had scheduled an early visit to the zoo with my friend Scott, so I had to wake Trevor up. But he is always happy to get up for Scott! To read about our trip to the zoo, complete with pictures, go here. We had a great time, and the zoo was very quiet in the morning. We also got to see lots of zoo staff feeding and caring for the animals.

Then of course, we went to Steak and Shake.

After lunch, Scott dropped us off and we took care of the doggies. We played with them for a while and took them on a walk. Then, they were off to the kennel for a couple of nights because we were headed to French Lick on Sunday morning.

On Sunday we were to pick up a friend at 9:30 a.m. and my Mom at 10:00 a.m. for a trip to French Lick. But first, Trevor and I decided we would go see the Boxer show at the Indy Winter Classic Dog Show that started at 8:00 a.m. With much enthusiasm, we left the house at 7:30 a.m. and headed for the fairgrounds. The dog show was interesting. I think Trevor enjoyed it too. It was interesting to see all the Boxers and their different markings and other characteristics. We could definitely tell how some dogs were related to one another. We stayed for about an hour, which got us through all the male dogs. Next year, we'll have to go again and plan on seeing the whole show.

Off to French Lick. Here we stayed busy at the pool, playing games, watching the Daytona 500, and just walking around the hotel. They have some pretty cool shops to browse around in. I know I had thought at some point about sitting in one of the beautiful lobbies and reading, but I don't think we slowed down enough to do that during the trip.

By the time I dropped everyone off, picked up the doggies and headed home it was about 7:30 p.m. on Monday night. Just enough time to get settled back in before my guests arrived at 9:00. I am a very lucky girl.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The Weekend Adventure and Recovery Zone

Yes, I did have that weekend adventure. And it turned out to be an adventure that I desperately needed.

Last week was an adventure all its own with a foot of snow here in the Hoosier State. On top of that, it was audit week at work, which equals long days with lunch usually coming out of a vending machine. When I used to work at a college, all of my co-workers would talk about how bad orientation week was for everyone working. I want to make sure that all of you know that every job has its orientation week. Accountants have tax season, retail has the holidays, and pharma companies have regulatory agency visits. None of them are fun, but if you do well and keep it together, things can be great when they are over.

So after working several long days last week, it seemed like I would get home and always have to shovel. I don't know how that worked out, but that is what happened. In the mix of it all, I aggravated an old knee injury (from the dark ages of 1987) and on Friday (luckily after the audit was over) my knee popped and it was out. I'm glad I had a Target shopping cart in hand when it happened. I hobbled around Friday night and tried to take the best care of it that I could. Aleve, ice packs, etc. But we had a family trip planned for the weekend, so I had to get it together.

Remember the work picnic when I won the great prize! That is right, we were headed to the Great Wolf Lodge this weekend. And, actually, I really needed it after the week I had. So, I packed up my cute little overnight bag that I got for Christmas (thanks Diane!) and got some rest.

I did feel better on Saturday morning, but it still took me awhile to get around. I was running about a half hour late to drop off doggies, pick up Mom, and then pick up Trevor and his parents. And then off to Ohio. The Lodge was actually great, terribly crowded, but great. I spent the majority of my water park time in the wave pool and the lazy river. I had to meet with an Athletic Trainer at work on Monday and he confirmed that spending time in the water was the best thing that I could have done over the weekend. So, I'm very glad I went. My knee felt great after I got home.

The coolest thing about the Lodge was that we stayed in what was called a "Kid Cabin" suite. The room has an area that looks like a cabin with 3 twin beds where Trevor, my Mom, and I slept. The other area of the room had a queen bed and a pull out couch. After dropping everyone off at home, I got home around 8 on Sunday. I had some dinner and headed to bed, missing the last play of the Super Bowl.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take my camera. But maybe I'll get some pictures to post from my Mom. I'd love to figure out if there was a season when they weren't so busy.