Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A little "slice" of heaven

This blog is dedicated to my friend April. Todd and I enjoyed a little slice of heaven on Monday night in honor of you! Yep. We had some Papa Dell's pizza. Oh, it is so good. I ate so much I couldn't move, but it is amazing and totally worth the calories! Papa Dell's sells half-baked frozen pizza's and we got it via Champaign two weeks ago. All we had to do was bake it for 1 hour to enjoy the best deep dish pizza ever! Not only is this this best pizza on earth, it is a reminder of the good old days! I miss C-U! Good friends, good times, and obviously good food. I'd take back the days in the palace anytime.

(April, you totally deserve some Papa Dell's! Next time you are in Illinois and are close to C-U, it is on us!!)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Shots, shots, and more shots

No, this is not a reference to alcohol! Rather, the crazy amount of shots Murphy got this past week for his last puppy checkup! It was unreal! He is officially 4-months old so we were able to get his rabies shot and his final DHLPP shot. This is good because he can now go to doggie daycare and I will feel safer about him romping around outside and hunting with Todd. He also got a lyme shot. We do flea and tick treatments year-round, but that does not prevent lyme disease, so we got this optional shot just in case.

Here is Murphy at 4-months old. He hardly looks like a puppy anymore he is so big! It is hard to tell from this picture, but his paws are HUGE! He is tall and lanky and weighs 35 lbs already!! He goes through food like crazy and I am worried we will have to take out stock in Purina to continue feeding him.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The (Nearly) Naked Mile

On Monday night, I ran The (Nearly) Naked Mile with Mandy. The race was part of IU's Homecoming week and this was the first year for the race. The nearly naked reference is that it is an opportunity to donate new or gently used clothing to local charities instead of paying an entry fee. Let's just say the race was not at all what I expected, but it was hilarious!

The check-in and start were total chaos. I almost left it was so chaotic. Thankfully, Mandy was in a different check-in line and got me checked in when she got to the front of the line. I was still way at the back. There were no instructions on where to go or what to do. All of the suddent the crowd started moving, so we followed. The next thing we knew, people all around us took off running. There was no official start and no one knew the route. We just took off! I thought I was going to die at several points during the race! It was so dark (the race started at 10pm) and there were so many people running around like crazy, jumping in front of me. At one point, I tripped over a curb, only because some idiot jumped in front of me as I was stepping up. But, we finished and got some good pictures in the process. I'll only post a few as some are a little R-rated for this blog. Some of the people took the (nearly) naked part literally. The best was a guy who ran in only a G-string. I wasn't sure if I should laugh or puke in some cases.

Mandy and I pre-race (clearly not nearly naked)

Random people before the race (the PG ones anyway)

My Bachelorette Weekend

Long time, no post! It seems like some weeks I am great and posting and some weeks I am just behind. This is my busy time of year at work, so that doesn't help at all! The past weekend was a fun one! Todd decided to go hunting in Iowa with Lucy. So, I was left to take care of Murphy and make my own weekend plans. Everything was up in the air until the last minute, but it all came together in the end!

Friday night, I went with Lana and some others to IU Midnight Madness. It was definitely interesting. I had to constantly use the program they handed out to look up the players. There is only one returning player from last year, so most of the players are unknown to the fans. There are a couple of players that are really good, especially one freshman guy that I think will turn out to be really good in the next few years. Of course, the Illini are still my #1 team, but IU does pay the bills, so to speak, so I am a fan unless they are playing Illinois. Plus, I really like Coach Crean. I think he is going to do a lot for IU basketball. I hated Sampson and had bad vibes about him from day one (although I would never say I told you so)!

Saturday morning, I decided to run the Jill Behrman 5k, a local race that benefits Jill's House. I ran with my friend Mandy and we rocked the race! I finished in 25:17 and Mandy in 25:27. I think that is my fastest 5k ever! I was shocked to have finished in that time. I'd like to think I could improve up on that time, but who knows. I am running less and less these days, plus the weather was ideal that morning, which always helps.

I was working on some plans for Saturday afternoon, when my brother called to say they had an extra ticket for the Illini football game in Champaign. So, Murphy and I loaded up the car and headed to C-U. We tailgated and I say my old college roommate Jamie for a few minutes. The game was awesome. We creamed IU. It was my first time back in the stadium since all the renovations were completed. The place is amazing - it is huge and so much nicer than when I was a student. My ticket was with my parents, brother, and his friends. Murphy was a trooper, although after three hours of being on a leash he was getting a little grumpy. He stayed in the car during the game.

On Sunday, we headed home from Illinois, but stopped to see Jamie again and Murphy played with Daisy, her golden retriever. They had a blast. Murphy will wrestle with anyone who is willing and Daisy was happy to oblige.

Unfortunately, I have zero pictures from the weekend! I am so bummed! Todd took my camera when he left to go hunting Friday afternoon. But, I do have a picture of he and Lucy after getting some ducks. They had a good weekend and got lots of ducks (this is always a tough situation for me - I want them to be successful and have a good hunt, but I am not really into eating duck). Lucy ended up with limber tail again, but is back to normal today.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Vote 2008

I voted. It was a little weird to vote early, but I decided to stop at one of the early voting locations Friday night on my way home from work. I had been passing it for days and was trying decide what to do. Election day falls during my busy time of the year at work, so it makes it hard to stop and vote. I also have issues with our voting location as they have two precincts in one location. It gets a little crowded in there and the poll workers can be annoying. So, I went for it and I think it is about the best decision I have ever made!

I did not wait in line and after filling out a some paperwork to have my absentee ballot count, I voted. It took all of five minutes and it was awesome! It was so easy! I think I may do this every election day from now on. I am hopeful that someday we can all vote online. I don't know if it will ever be possible or allowed, but if we can file our taxes electronically, we should be able to vote electronically from our home computer.

There actually wasn't a whole lot on the ballot. I went through and made all my selections - definitely a mix of republican and democrat candidates. I am a strong believer in choosing the best candidate for the job despite party affiliation. I hope everyone else out there does the same. Look at all different issues facing us on a national and local level. Vote for the candidate who will be the most effective in office. Don't focus on one issue and vote for someone because of their belief or previous voting record on that one issue. Most importantly, do your research and make an informed decision, especially for candidates on the local level you may not know much about.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Halloween is going to suck this year!

Just a little economic humor for the day! :)

How the economy is affecting me

CNN: What this economy means for you

This is a good article on what the economy means for us on an individual level. This is one of the better ones out there, in my opinion, after researching this topic a little. In general, for me personally, it means we probably won't be upgrading houses anytime soon. I'd like to, but am not sure we could sell ours with the current market. Otherwise, we can all sit around and wait for the tax increase to pay for the bail out. Fun times!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

There's always next year!

My mantra again this season is that there is always next year. The Cubs blew it again in the post season and my two theories of why the Cubs always fail held true:
  1. The Cubs are a fair weather team - they don't play well in the cold. This is why they are no good in April or October.
  2. The Cubs are no good under pressure. Zambrano (my favorite player, whose jersey I own) threw a no-hitter against Huston on a random night at a game played on neutral turf in Milwaukee, but he got lit-up in his post season start.

I was really, really hoping for something better. Can you imagine the storyline of the Cubs going to the World Series after a 100 year drought?!? I think even the in sports media is upset. They are still talking about the Cubs collapse on ESPN today!

But, I probably even more sad that the general 2008 baseball season is over me. No more planning evenings and weekends around the start of a Cubs game or eating out a Yogi's or Scotty's to catch the games on the stations we don't get at home. I also have no quick distraction from work to check on day game scores. And, I am bummed one of the guys at work I always give a hard time is from the LA area and a huge Dodgers fan. I heard it from him this week!

So, here's to next year. Maybe we can have a dream season in my lifetime. If not, I'll still pull out my Cubs jersey for Opening Day each year.

A sigh of relief...

After a month, a very long month, we are finally able to breathe a sigh of relief. As many of you know, my mom had lung cancer several years ago. She is very fortunate to be alive, as the survival rates are typically 37% an the five year survival rate is about 15%. After some initial tests were showing some questionable spots back in early September, the full body pet scan yesterday came back with great results. There was no cancer and everything looks as it should (well, as close to normal as possible after surviving cancer, among other things).

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Election 2008

I wrote a very, very long post about the election, but I have decided not to post it because I don't want to offend anyone. I have friends on both sides of the party line and I know the discussion can be heated. But, the short version of my post is this:

I do not like Sarah Palin at all. I do not believe she is qualified to participate in national politics at such a high level, I believe she is not what she says she is, and her voice grates on my nerves, like fingernails on a chalkboard.

Walk for the Animals 2008

Today we took the dogs to the Monroe County Humane Association for the annual Walk for the Animals. The event is a fundraiser for the Humane Association and has different events for dogs, vendors with pet items, and a walk around Karst Farm Park. Each year we go to support the Humane Association, but Lucy loves to do all the events, especially the water play area and the Recall Relay competition. This year she took 1st place again! She is now the reigning champ for the last three years. Last year she won out of over 60 dogs. This year was a smaller group, but she took the championship anyway. Several people commented on how good she was, too!

Lucy on her winning sprint in the Recall Relay.

Lucy and Murphy play with others in the water area!