Friday, March 31, 2006

Updates on House Building Blog

Got my other blog all updated (finally!) with some new "stuff" that has been going on.

You can check that out here.

Thanks for stopping by! :-)

Wednesday, March 29, 2006


Remember my big project? The Data Book? All 185 pages of it??

WELL - -

It's been put on hold until the MAY Board Meeting.

So I have another month to finalize it.


I can finally breathe . . .

And also maybe get a couple of posts done on my other blog, which is woefully behind the times - - I have a couple of interesting things to add to it, but haven't had the time.

I'll post here when the other one is updated. Stay tuned . . .

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

This Site is Addictive!!!

Go to this site - - and you will see what I mean:

Click on this link for the "Levers" game

This is the homepage where other games can be accessed: vectorpark

I am NOT a fan of computer games, but - - "Levers" grabs me and will NOT let go!


But it's FUN! Check it out . . .

Sunday, March 26, 2006

In the Office Again . . . *sigh*

Yes, even though it is SUNDAY - -

I was in the office.

Working on the Data Book.

It was a good time to get things completed, though - - during the week, there are so many interruptions - - phone calls, people coming in, and the general everyday work that needs done - - that it makes it impossible to get through all th minute details that this book involves.

SO - - since yesterday was Nephew Sam's Birthday party (and I was NOT going to miss THAT!) - - that meant Sunday was designated as "Data Book Day".

I spent a total of 5 hours in the office, and accomplished so much - - got the whole book proofread one more time, got all the pages numbered correctly, filled in the page numbers on the Table of Contents for each section (all 9 of them) - - created the Index/Glossary section and got it alphabetized - - *whew*

Then I went through the 6-page Fact Sheet and got it corrected with accurate information.

Tomorrow I should be ready to fix the one survey page that still needs revising, and also correct that info on the Fact Sheet - -

Once that is all done, all the sections will get converted to PDF to preserve formatting when it's sent to the Copy Center - -

Then (hopefully) we will be ready to print. Thank goodness.

It's been a long hard trek - - but it will look fantastic when presented to the Board in April.

This project is my "baby" - - my "pride and joy" - -

I take great pains to make sure it is all accurate and formatted properly and looks as good as possible. It has the College's name on it, as well as my boss's name, and MY name. I want it to be a publication that the College can be proud of.

And once it's all printed and done for this year - - I will go home, look in the mirror, and count all the new white hairs it has caused me - - and then go visit Lady Clairol for a touch-up! :-)

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Happy Birthday, Sam!

Dear Hubby and I went to his brother's new house in Bloomington today for nephew Sam's 10th Birthday party.

Pizza Hut pizza, Scotcheroos - - yummmmm!

And - - Nephew Travis and his girlfriend Renee were there also! It was good to see both of them!

This was also a nice treat for me, because I had not seen their new house yet, having had that nasty stomach flu a few weeks ago and having to miss all the moving day activities. So Debbie took me on the "grand tour", and it is a gorgeous house! The "parlor" is small and cozy, and would be perfect for curling up with a good book and a couple of cats . . . :-) . . . and the Master Bedroom is HUGE!! The whole house is wonderful. I'm sure they will be very happy living there.

Sam was having fun and got lots of neat presents.

All in all, it was a good time - - and it was great to be able to spend time with all of them!



"M-Unc" Steve and Aunt Liz

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Snow Day Update

Well, the Banana Chocolate Chip Bread is baked.

The Blueberry Bread is baking as I am typing this.

The whole house smells WONDERFUL!! :-)

Both cats are asleep on the bed - - I did Callie's favorite thing - - folding her favorite fuzzy throw into 4ths, then placing the heating pad between the layers (only turned up to 2 on the heat dial). She LOVES that! She has spent most of the day on it, and has even been so kind as to share part of it with Carmichael! They look so cute curled up sleeping together - - it's tempting to go join them for a nap!

But I still have Blueberry Bread baking, so it's probably best to stay awake . . ..

The snow and wind have died down quite a bit now. At 10:30 a.m. we were downgraded from a Blizzard Warning to a Winter Weather Advisory until 4:00 p.m. We have probably 10 inches of the cold white stuff out there, and some pretty awesome drifts! And it just looks cold out there. *brrr*

I've only been out of the house twice - - once to step over to the garage and get something from the freezer, and the other time to do some "maintenance" - - we lost Satellite signal. No TV? Oh no!! SO - - I put on my coat, gloves, boots, and hiked around the corner of the house. Sure enough, the dish was full of snow - - brushed it all out, went back inside - - picture was back! That's one of the very few times we have lost signal since we got the Satellite dish last May. Some people may consider it a pain to have to go out and do that, but the good things GREATLY outweigh the bad! 180 channels, plus a whole bunch of Sirius Satellite Radio stations . . . and it's cheaper than our expanded basic cable cost us. (Hey, I'm no fool!)

Well, the timer just went off - - need to go check the Blueberry Bread!


Well, I got my wish.

For the first time in three winters, the College is closed for a SNOW DAY!

I'm going to baka Banana Chocolate Chip Bread (Banana Bread with mini chocolate chips stirred in - - yummmm!), and I have some blueberries from a late summer farmer's market thawing out for Blueberry Bread (no chocolate chips in that, though!).

I'm also going to do a bit of filing in my home office - - just a little bit - -

And THEN - -

I'm going to pile down on the couch and spend some "quality time" with my two fur-babies! Callie and Carmichael are looking forward to it, I can tell - - they keep following me around the house, waiting for me to sit down and create a lap they can curl up in!


But one is plenty - - I want to make it back to work tomorrow, before "cabin fever" starts to set in! :-)


If you haven't already noticed, there are a couple of new things on my sidebar. I've joined BlogMad and hope to get some more "hits" from that, and maybe some new readers? And some more commenters? Keeping my fingers crossed . . . .


I also adopted a "virtual pet" from BunnyHero Labs. He looked so much like my kitty Carmichael, I just had to have him! When you click on the "More" tab at the lower right corner, it brings up a toy to play with, a ball and string on a stick. You can move it around, and he will stick his paw out of the basket and try to catch it. It's just TOO MUCH like my real Carmie . . .

Anyway - - Check out the site - - once you get to the homepage, click on the "CyberPets" link - - you can customize and "adopt" your own!


Well, it's off to enjoy my "SNOW DAY" - - I hear the oven calling - - time to go start Banana Bread - - the whole house is going to smell yummy! :-)

Monday, March 20, 2006

Batten Down the Hatches!!

Well, we were under a Winter Storm Warning.

That has now been cancelled.

It has now been upgraded to a BLIZZARD WARNING.

Oh joy.

They are forecasting freezing rain, sleet, and hunderstorms this evening, and 1-2 inches of snow per hour from Midnight through 7:00 a.m. Tuesday.

Along with all that nice "stuff" will be 25-35 MPH winds.


SO - - I may have my longed-for snow day yet! :-)

Severe thunderstorms and tornadoes just a week ago - -

And now this - - on the FIRST DAY OF SPRING, no less . . .

Ah yes - - weather in Central Illinois . . .. :-)

Keep ya posted . . .

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Storm Damage

Springfield had LOTS of damage from the two F2 tornadoes that hit last Sunday night/Monday morning. One of the local radio stations, WNNS Lite Rock, has a slide show of storm damage photos on their website. You can access the photos HERE.

Some of the people in Springfield are STILL without power, and some will not get it back until next Wednesday. The really bad thing is, they are calling for pretty cold temps from tonight on, and a very good chance of an accumulating snow by Wednesday.

I'm saying my prayers for them.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Okay - -

Well, I promised to post about last weekend's little "road trip" - - and now that this HECTIC week is FINALLY over, there is finally time to do just that! :-)

Dear Hubby had two gun safe doors to pick up in Ohio (one for himself, and one for a co-worker) - - so he was taking a Friday and Saturday to make the trip to pick them up. Would I care to go along?

Hmmmm - - riding 6-1/2 hours, in the cab of a pickup, pulling a trailer all the way out there, and pulling the trailer and an additional 1,500 pounds (more or less) all the way back - - bumpy, rough, LONG . . .

Heck yeah - - I want to go - -


Because - - no matter what it is, it seems that if he and I are doing it together, it's always FUN! :-)

And it was . . . .

We pulled out last Friday morning at 5:00 a.m. Yes, that is 5:00 in the MORNING. Yes, I'm crazy . . .

We stopped in Rantoul for a quick breakfast, at the local Hardee's, where it seemed all the local farmers gathered. Listening to them pick at each other was pretty amusing as we sat there and ate. Then it was back on the road.

We stopped for lunch in a small town just across the Indiana/Ohio border called Antwerp, at a Friendly's. If you have never eaten at a Friendly's, I highly recommend it! The only time I had been to one was in New York City, and all I had was Italian ice or ice cream. As it turns out, their FOOD is great! We will definitely stop at a Friendly's again on future trips.

We finally made it to the small town of Tontogawa, just north of Bowling Green, Ohio, to pick up the safe doors. After about 45 minutes of loading and securing, they were ready to go, and we were on out way back towards Ft. Wayne, Indiana to spend the night.

This is where the REAL fun began . . . . . :-)

We pulled into Ft. Wayne, which is a fair-sized city. Of course we got lost trying to find the Red Roof Inn. Finally found it, turned to go to it - - and of course wound up on a street with NO entrance to it. *sigh*

SO - - it's time to backtrack and take another stab at it.

As we get back to the intersection and are waiting to turn left, we look about 1/2 block up, and see a very LARGE neon sign - - of a girl dancing on a pole. The sign with it said "Brandy's Exotic Dancers". I looked at Steve, and he immediately said, "I'm innocent here! I've never been in Ft. Wayne before! Honest!"

I just started laughing . . .

So he is still protesting his innocence as the light turns green, and he proceeds to turn left. As he does, we look next door to the Red Roof Inn - - -

and there is "Showgirls I Gentlemen's Club". Right next door.

I bust out laughing even harder.

Steve just says, "Aw S**T! I can't win here!"

But then it got even better - - we had to pull into Showgirls drive and go THROUGH THEIR PARKING LOT to get to our hotel.

He was mortified. I couldn't quit laughing at him.

Poor guy.

I tried to smooth things over - - I even pointed out to him that we didn't even have to drive anywhere for supper, because their sign advertised "Free Buffet until 7:00 p.m."

He didn't go for that, for some reason . . . . :-)

Oh well - - it was all fun. At his expense. *snicker*

The next morning we found a GREAT bakery for breakfast - - Richard's Bakery. They are kind of a small place, looking pretty plain and unassuming, but when you drive by, you can see they have wedding cakes and all kinds of other things they make. So, we decided to stop and try a couple of doughnuts.

Oh. My. God. Those were SO good.

We got two apiece, but they were so BIG and so FILLING, I could only eat one. Steve managed both of his, somehow. But I kept mine wrapped up in the bag and saved it for Sunday (which, by the way, it tasted just as good and just as fresh-baked as the one the day before).

Ever in Ft. Wayne - - stop at Richard's. You will NOT be disappointed. That's a promise.

After breakfast, we headed up to Auburn, Indiana, the home of the Auburn-Cord-Deusenberg Car Museum. It is located in the original manufacturer's building, which has been totally restored to its original grandeur, including the Art Deco designs on the walls, floors, and ceilings. Absolutely amazing! And the cars - - oh my, the CARS - - are awesome. Completely restored Auburns, in all their bright, bright colors; Cords, and of course, Deusys. BEAUTIFUL works of art.

We loved every bit of that place, and will definitely go back again some day.

After a couple of hours of browsing fun, it was time to start heading back towards Illinois. We made it to Champaign right at supper time, so of course that meant stopping at our all-time favorite Barbeque place, Li'l Porgy's. They are one of the best!

Finally made it back home, just in time for a pounding thunderstorm. LOTS of fun unloading in the rain . . . *sigh*

But, we were home, and that's all that mattered.

It was fun going away with Dear Hubby for a couple of days, but it was even better being home with him and the fur-babies (who, by the way, were VERY glad to see us!)

SO - - that is the "Reader's Digest Condensed" version of the weekend trip. There were lots more things that we saw, and some more things that we did, but too much to go into right now. It's been a helluva week, and it's not over yet. I'll be in the office tomorrow trying to finish up my yearly Data Book (about 175 pages or more), which is due the first part of April. It's extremely difficult to get it finished up during the week, with phone calls and numerous interruptions, so tomorrow will be a good time to do it. It may take some time on Sunday also . . . oh well, I may have a weekend SOMETIME . . .

Thanks for stopping by. I'll post more over the weekend. :-)

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

I Know I Know . . .

Yes, I promised to post our trip highlights today.

I lied.

Not intentionally, though. It's just that it's been "one of those days" at work, and tomorrow is another L-O-O-O-N-G day, due to teaching Part 2 of the Intermediate Excel class tomorrow.

I think the reason for the bad day at work is due to the weather - - we just had those violent storms - - now it's COLD (29 degrees!) - - and they are calling for rain again tomorrow and Thursday.

My sinuses don't know WHAT to think! And so, as usually is the case when this happens, they decide to THROB. And HURT. Since they don't know what else to do. (Like take a nap or something . . . )

SO - - it's some aspirin and an early bedtime for me tonight.

And I will get the trip highlights posted by the weekend.


Thanks for stopping by - - 'night . . . *yawn*

Monday, March 13, 2006

Survived the Storm

Well, last night was quite an adventure.

After I shut down the computer around 8:30 or so, the wind started really picking up, and the lightning was just absolutely awesome! We had quite a little windstorm blow through, and dump quite a bit of rain on us, but it seemed to pass pretty quickly.

Other areas around us didn't fare so well, though - - there was quite a bit of tornado damage in Springfield and the surrounding areas. In fact, my favorite Gordman's store lost their roof! :-(

I am officially in mourning over that loss. . . . .

BUT - - just when you think all the fun is over - - Mother Nature turns around and give you a BIG surprise!

We were wakened up at 3:00 a.m. this morning with the tornado sirens going off, wind blowing, thunder and lightning - - the whole show. We turned on the scanner and started hearing reports of tornadoes on the ground over by Springfield again. We turned on the TV, and the local station had their weather reports cranking out non-stop, showing the places of rotation, and where things were heading. From the looks of it, all the really bad stuff was going to skirt by just West of us - - which it did.

But it was STILL a pretty spectacular light show! :-)

SO - - I have been awake since 3:00 a.m. I'm teaching Intermediate Excel tonight, and will not get out of here until 9:00 p.m.

Can't wait to get home and get some SLEEP!!

I'll post my trip highlights tomorrow . . . I'll be WAY too tired to do that when I get home from work!

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Back From Ohio

Well, Dear Hubby Steve and I made our "road trip" to Ohio and back this weekend - - the one we had to put off for a couple of weeks due to the flu bugs in our household.

I will post about our little "adventure", but not at the moment. We have severe storms heading our way - - in fact, I can hear the thunder in the distance, and Springfield (just 35 miles West of here) has set off their warning sirens.

SO - - the computer is going down, and we are going on alert. Time to ride the storm out . . .

I'll post our trip activities soon!

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Update on JT

I heard from our mutual friend A about how JT is doing. He came through the surgery fine, but is having quite a bit of pain. He didn't have his pain meds yet, and Tylenol w/codeine wasn't doing the trick. Once his mom got off work and can get the prescription filled, he will be in MUCH better shape.

But he's doing pretty okay, and I'm glad to hear it.

Hang in there, JT - - and come see "Mom" out at the College when you feel up to it! :-)


Today was better.

I'm still not back 100%, but at least my energy level is better. Yesterday was such a chore, just trying to make it through the day, and it felt like 5:00 p.m. would NEVER get here! But my energy level was vastly improved today.

NOT looking forward to tomorrow, though - - TWO - - count 'em - - TWO meetings to take minutes at . . . *sigh* . . . one at 9:00 a.m. (staff meeting), and one at 3:30 p.m. which should be a real doozy!! I am NOT looking forward to it . . . and, since it is confidential, I can't even get on here and vent about it afterward! :-(

Oh well - - wish me luck . . .

Monday, March 06, 2006


Well, I made it through the whole day. Somehow.

By mid-afternoon, my energy level was dipping pretty low, but eventually 5:00 p.m. rolled around, and I was on my way out. *whew* Hopefully tomorrow will be better.

Dear Hubby and I met a couple of friends for dinner this evening. About the middle of the day, I wasn't sure I was gonna be up for it, but everything worked out. It was fun - - some of these friends we have are just. not. right. But that's what makes it such fun! :-)

But it's getting late, and I'm exhausted. Tomorrow is another day, and hopefully will be a little easier to get through.


Before I sign off, I'm asking for best wishes for my friend JT. He is one of my many College alumni who consider me their "College Mom", and he is going through a rough spot. Last week when he was at the College attending a concert over noon hour, he had a tooth break. Part of it fell out, part stayed in. Then the exposed nerve started throbbing. Then hurting even more. I got him some extra strength aspirin, and got him to my office so he could contact his dentist and his mom for a ride. When he called me back later, he told me the dentist couldn't see him until Thursday, but he was to go to the Emergency Room that even when they had a dental person on staff. Last update from our mutual friend Ann is that he is really drugged up on pain medicine, and antibiotics, for a severe infection. He is having surgery tomorrow to take care of things.

Get better soon, JT. I'll be thinking about you. Come back out to the College and see "Mom" when you feel better.


Off to bed for me - - thanks for stopping by . . . 'night *yawn*

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Back To the Office Tomorrow

Well, I emailed the training coordinator Friday and told her I would not be able to be in training Monday and Tuesday - - that being sick 2 days this pas week made it impossible for me to be gone any longer.

SO - - I'm going to reschedule to attend Part 2 in April.

I am going to get things ready for my Wednesday meetings tomorrow. I did NOT feel like going into the office today to do anything - - my energy level is still pretty low. I can actually eat "real food" now, but not much at one time. I fill up pretty darn fast. Which is fine. I don't need to overeat anyway.

Dear Hubby and I got up EARLY this morning (5:30 a.m.!) and got ready to go - - went to Caterpillar and got some scrap wood to use to help transport the safe doors next weekend. Cat has this deal where they let employees in at 7:00 a.m. on Sunday mornings, and they get 10-15 minutes to load up whatever scrap wood they want from the salvage area. They usually have some pretty neat stuff, and good quality, too!

As we left Cat, it started sleeting. Then raining. Then snowing. THEN all mixed up together.

Really lovely . . . *sigh*

We decided to grabb a quick bite for breakfast. Then headed to Walmart for a quick grocery run, and then on home.

By this time it's almost 9:00 a.m. - - and we're both exhausted. SO - - it's back off to bed for a long winter's nap. The weather was very conducive to napping!

The kittycats thought this was a MARVELOUS idea . . . :-)

We didn't wake up until 12:30 p.m.!!!!

So this has been a basically lazy day for both of us. We still are not completely back 100%, in fact, Steve is still not going in early working any overtime, and may not the rest of this week. He is still fighting that darn cough, and isn't getting good rest like he should. But he has an appointment with his allergy doctor Tuesday, so maybe he can give him something to knock that.

As for me, well - - I'm hanging in there. My legs still feel a little shaky if I'm up doing too much for too long, but I'll just have to take it easy tomorrow and get done what I can. If my energy level tanks, I'll go home early if need be.

Wish us luck . . . ..

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Flu Update

Well, I didn't make it in to work on Friday - - my tummy would not allow it. And I'm home today instead of helping my brother- and sister-in-law move.

Darn it. I feel like I've let everyone down . . . . *sigh*

And I'm getting Cabin Fever. I'm getting it BAD.

SO - - I have showered, and gotten into some real people clothes (instead of the jammies I've been living in!) and have decided that I at least need to get out for a few minutes before I go absolutely crazy! So I'm going to take a quick trip into town and go to the Post Office to mail a few things.

THAT should wear me out pretty quickly - - my strength is still not back up to where it should be.

But I'm on the mend, and that's a good thing!

Keep ya posted . . .

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Flu Bug, Part Deux

Dear Hubby Steve is pretty much over his fight with the nasty Flu bug that bit him. Except for the COUGH, that is . . . he is driving ME - - and HIMSELF - - crazy! Other than that, he's doing pretty okay. Finally got his energy level back, and things are cool.

Now it's MY turn. :-(

I don't have the same one he had - - his was all upper respiratory and chest. MINE, however, is stomach flu.

God, I hate this.

Woke up at 1:00 a.m. this morning with stomach cramps. Laid there in bed hoping things would settle down, but no luck. Got up at 1:45 a.m., and was up until 5:45 a.m. sick.

NOT fun!

And the worst thing is - - this is the ONE DAY this week when I absolutely COULD NOT be sick - - our office is hosting a meeting on campus with people coming in from all over the State, and we are the ones who need to make sure it all goes smoothly.

And here I am at home - - in my pink flannel jammies (hey, they are Victoria's Secret - - they are really COOL flannel jammies!!) - - wondering what to do. Our college is known for our hospitality and making people feel welcome when we host an event - - any event - - and I did not want that reputation tarnished in any way.

SO - -

By 7:00 a.m. I am on the phone to M, my boss's assistant, calling him at home to let him know what was happening. I also told him I was going to make some other calls and get everything arranged, and would talk to him once he got to the office.

I then called S, who was in town from a college up north, who was officiating the meeting. We have been in constant contact on the phone for weeks now, making sure everything was arranged. I told her I would work things our and get back with her very soon.

I then called C, my "partner in crime", who has worked conferences and meetings with me for years. We have it down to an art - - we don't even have to say anything to each other any more, we just know what needs done, and we do it. I explained the whole situation to her, asked for her help (BLESS YOU, C!), and told her where everything was in my office. I also asked her to put S in contact with Food Servide, in case there were any last minute meal questions (2-day meeting, LOTS of food).

I then called down to Shilling and talked to B, who takes care of setup. I told her the situation, and that C would be bringing S down to see her before 9:00 a.m. She told me not to worry (yeah, right!! I'm ITALIAN, remember???) - - she would take care of things.

I then called M back at home and told him everything was arranged for. I then called S back at her hotel room, and told her where she needed to go to meet up with C.

I also made sure everyone had my home number in case they couldn't find something they needed.

*WHEW* - - NOW I'm exhausted!!

By this time it is 8:00, and I decide it's time to head to bed and try to get some sleep, if my tummy will allow me to. Figured if they needed me, they would call.

I woke up at 11:30 a.m.

Wow - - no phone calls!

SO - - I got up and called C to see how things went. Everything went very smoothly, and S and her group were pleased with things. That's a GOOD feeling! :-)

So I went back to bed, and curled up with two fur-kittys and slept most of the afternoon. Dear Hubby woke me up when he got home around 3:30. I have finally tried to eat something - - let's see how THIS works out.

But now I am ready to head back off to bed. The way my tummy is feeling, it is up in the air as to whether I make it to work tomorrow or not. I'm hoping so, because I'm out of the office in training Monday and Tuesday, and have to pull things together for a staff meeting scheduled for Wednesday morning. I'll go in on Sunday and get those packets ready if I have to!

Thanks for stopping by, and wish me luck shaking this nasty Flu bug - - *sigh*