Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Giving Makes Me Smile

I have found that paradox, that if you until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love. 
– Mother Theresa

--

The most favorite part of the holidays, for me, is seeing everyone's eyes light up with joy and happyness when they see how awesome my gift giving abilities are.

i swear, my gifts totally rock.

last year my brother was on a Where the Wild Things Are kick, mainly cause the movie previews started coming out...so i made him this...


Yes. It's the bottom of an old skate board that i painted by hand to look like the famous scene in the book.


So this year...instead of being super creative and i decided to do more shopping for people then making...

plus, working at South Park Mall for CLE Clothing Co. got me in the mood to shop. Among other things, but for another time.

Mainly my gifts were t-shirts from CLE, but i did come up with one amazing idea.

Build-A-Bear. For Grannie-Annie.

a quick background. there are four grandkids, me, my brother Mike and my two cousins, Kevin and Kristi. Grannie-Annie calls us the Get-Along-Gang cause we grew up together and actually, for the most part, got along.

and like any grandma, she spoiled us rotten. and she has a million pictures of us. she calls the pictures "her little people". "i miss my little people" she'll say over the phone. past gifts to Grannie-Annie have included: a blanket with all our names embordered on it, a 4-picture locket with all our pictures, picture trees, anything and everything that can hold any sort of picture of us. it makes her melt when she sees all 4 of us together...which, now only happens around the holidays.

because...my kick-ass cousin Kristi is the next Mother Theresa, true story. she would give up her college spring breaks to go down south and build houses, she raised money for habitat for humanity by biking (cycling) across America for 3 months...she is currently living in Mississippi partaking in her first year of Teach-For-America.

but back to my awesome gift giving skills. while walking through the mall to go to the CLE Holiday Shop, i walked by Build-A-Bear. and i knew i would have fun in that store playing dress-up with a stuffed animal. So i decided right then to get the Get-Along-Gang together and make bears for Grannie-Annie. it was really hard trying to schedule time when we could all get together...but the time finally came on Tuesday of Christmas week. Good thing the Mall was open till 11, cause it took us all about 45 minutes to make our bears, dress them and figure out how to get them birth certificates. We decided to make our bears to look like each of us. So then Grannie-Annie could have all her "little people" all the time and not just look at pictures...i mean who wants to cuddle with a picture frame.

we decided the best way to give these mini versions of ourselves to Grannie-Annie as the very last gift of the day.

she opened one bear house at a time and loved every single one to pieces. i'm pretty sure there were a few tears.



Grannie-Annie with her Get-Along-Gang and our respected versions of ourselves as bears.

it was really one of the greatest gifts we could've given her. she just beamed the rest of the day. and after all the commotion said "i can't wait to show my friend Bea what you guys did for me"

tear.

Grannie-Annie, it is our pleasure to make you so happy and proud of all of us. we love you higher than the sky.

so peeps. what did you get, give, enjoy this holiday season?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Popularity Contest


This was for them. I just wanted to let them know how much I appreciate them. It was a moment like this that you want to share with them. I hope the people in Cleveland enjoy this one because they deserve it.
– Phil Dawson
 (pointing to the Dawg Pound after the victory and spent a few moments honoring them)


--


In order for the Browns to win, i need to work a full day, wear my Cribbs jersey, drink christmas ale and miller lite and be at blind pig...i think i can handle that.


Last night my awesome friends and i were at blind pig. Alexa was able to grab some miller lite VIP passes from two strangers (thank you) that allowed us to drink miller lite and eat for free...fun times then, rough times now.



i'm not sure if i can talk about the upcoming competition between Alexa and Tripp...who's Tripp? oh, just my friend Hartzel who looks like this guy



Tripp Vanderbilt from Gossip Girl


but the fact that some stranger went up to Alexa last night at Blind Pig and asked if she was the Plum...sorry dude...you are gonna lose.


have a great weekend.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Here We Go Brownies!

They realized that as long as the ball got there on time, it didn't matter how it looked. 
– Bernie Kosar

--

Okay. So its a little late to be talking about the Browns. and i'll probably lose some readers, but something happened last night that made me a realize how special it is to be a Browns fan.

I mean what other city has a play who's sole purpose is to talk about the past awesomeness that is the Cleveland Browns. 

Last night Jon and I went to see Browns Rules at the Cleveland Public Theater.

i had a smile on my face for two hours. i never knew that thinking of the browns for 2 consecutive hours would ever put a smile on my face.

inside everyone's program was a piece of orange paper that said For the Browns to Win the Super Bowl you gotta: and you fill out what the rule is. 

3 lockers decked in Browns paraphernalia. the main actors, Nick, Eric and Nathan are obvious browns fans. the songs, the dances, and the slight scene changes take the audience on an amazing trip through Cleveland Browns history.

did you know that Otto Graham was our first quarterback?
did you know that in 1950 we went 10-2!!!
did you know that the browns backers is the biggest sports affiliation, in the world!?

They even include the audience. one side is on offense, one side is on defense and at one point Nick finds a lady to dance with. I got to be that lucky lady. (at intermission, i got asked if i was part of the show!)

There are only 4 more shows. i strongly recommend going. for any brown fan out there, its worth it. even if its to just remember the "good ole days".

oh, and at the end of the show they read out 29 of the rules. what was mine?
In order for the Browns to win the super bowl you gotta: Beer Bong in the Muni Lot.

have a great weekend kids.

Go Browns!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Reunion Recap

The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Alphonse Karr 

--

This past weekend was a crazy one. there was the usual, Get Smashed Wednesday, followed by Hangover/Stuff Your Face Thursday, Black Friday where i worked 5 – 1:30 and the Highlight of the long weekend...Class of 1999 Reunion on Saturday!

All morning and afternoon I was going back and forth...nervous and excited. thinking, will it be weird if i walk in by myself? should i wear that dress with those shoes? should i bring a flask? who's gonna be there? will i remember everyone? will people remember me??? okay not so much of the last one...i'm kinda memorable...i mean i had to have two extra inserts of blank pages in my year book for people to sign! yeah, just like Melissa Joan Hart in Can't Hardly Wait.

Before i get into the details that i remember, i just want to say that Erin, Katie and Jenn did such an amazing job putting this together, Ricky did an awesome job DJing and everyone who made it, thank you for making it so much fun!!!!

This being my first high school reunion i noticed there are two types of reunion-goers...the people that want to reminisce and the people that want to prove something....we'll call them the remies and the provers...brilliant right? i was a remy. i wanted to talk about Mr. Lally's class, i wanted to talk about the 4th grade play, i wanted to talk about the parties, the fights, the football games...i wanted to hear stories that i forgot about. i mean it's great that people are married, have great careers, have kids, found happiness, or are still figuring it out, but i wanted memories. i just hope i wasn't too cold to anyone...

 and then there were the provers...the classmates that came to brag, to flaunt thier stuff...i'm surprise business cards weren't passed around...however, i did brag...about my kickball championship! and i made sure to leave my business cards at home...it did cross my mind. 

but i wanted to take a trip down memory lane, and with the slide show, the music and the awesomeness that is the Twinsburg/Chamberlin Class of 1999...it was an awesome trip. too bad we didn't all have matching hats like D.C. trip. and all the spouses and pictures of kids, and talks about the past, present and future really got me thinking how old we're getting. i mean the next time i'll see some of those faces will be 2019...omg i just typed in 2019.

Here is my little Best/Worse of the reunion...

best part of the night: the group picture.
worst part of the night: saying goodbye.
best accessory of the night: the mom wallets.
worst accessory of the night: high heals.
best party foul: getting hit on by a bus-boy.
worst party foul: perry dropping his drink on my shoes during the electric slide. hehehehe.

To the people who said "the people i want to see i still keep in touch" you missed out on some awesome memories. and to everyone who just couldn't get home to see friends and family i hope you make it next time.


Twinsburg/Chamberlin Class of 1999









Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Bragging Rights

If you done it, it ain't bragging.
– Walt Whitman 

--

the Restless Natives have finally won a kickball championship! 

it's been a while since our last championship...i can't even remember.
but this year...the Restless Natives, in third place, surpassed the second place team and run-ruled the first place team!

it was such sweet victory! and here are some of the highlights...

Jess: first base girl, got a double play!
JV: far right field babe, had some on target kicks!
Jeremy: right field stud, had a few awesome on the floor catches and kicks!
Jen Page: second base chica, had a record night of catching outs at second!
Maggie: all round fielder hot mama, had awesome kicks and base running!

Carmen: shortstop ball magnet, had some close catches and assisted Jen Page in her outs at second base.
Wes: kick ass third baseman, almost took Carmen's head off and had some pretty sweet plays at third.
J-Ho: left field sticky fingers, had awesome base running and some unbelievable catches!
Me: deep center, had the game winning catch!

Afterward we went upstairs of Mulberry's to have a few too many celebratory drinks! John, the owner of Cleveland Play's, was there and he had our Championship Sweatshirts!!! (expect for maggies, he ran out of smalls. sad face.)

But not only did we win the championship we had some awesome spectators watch our awesomeness too!

a special thanks to: Travis, Nikki and Heidi of the VBB!!!
and a big shout out to: Sam, Randy and his wife, Adam P, Tom P, Tiffany O and Optiems client Dawn from ET!!!!

we'll be defending our title in winter kickball starting in a few weeks!

i hope everyone enjoys the awesome holiday weekend! i'll see all you Twinsburg Tigers out tonight and Saturday for our 10-Year Reunion!

be safe!



Champions!
Back: Carmen, Me, Wes, J-Ho, Jeremy
Front: JV, Jen Page, Maggie, Jess

Friday, November 20, 2009

HOVA

He who does not feel me is not real to me, therefore he does not exist. So, poof... vamoose, son of a bitch.
– Jay-Z 

--

okay. i'm not gonna lie.
i am not a music buff.
i didn't know who AC/DC was till college.
i didn't know flea was the name of the bassist of Red Hot Chili Peppers.
i don't know what HOVA stands for.

my friends that know un-godly amounts of music trivia kinda freak me out.
i get intimidated. i know nothing. i just smile and nod.

so when i get to flaunt the small bit of musical knowledge that i know, watch out.
i will totally rub it in your face. take for example last night.

jon and i had an awesome date night which consisted of sushi rock and then barley house/map room to meet up with some of my lady friends. we then decided to drive to bike night at Now That's Class (yes, i wanted to drive. jon wanted to ride) i looked too cute to ride my bike anywhere.

so on the ride there its a given i have Blueprint III in my CD player. so we start talking about which songs are better and we get into a discussion about which came first Jigga What or 99 Problems...and i knew for a fact that Jigga was first...duh, i used to say it (in my head) all the time in the halls at high school...and i knew 99 was when i was in college...but since we didn't have any proof (or internet access) we decided to consult the next best Jay-Z expert.

My brother. MIKE! (who is totally freaking awesome)
so i called him and asked and i was right. yippy! in your face jon!

i wish i wouldn't have celebrated so much...because it turned into much more...
so while we're standing at the bar at Class i get a text from my brother and it snowballs into Jay-Z Jeopardy... 

Mike: Multiple choice Jay-Z has how many solo albums?
A. 12 B. 8 C. 15 D. 10
Response: Lara: B. 8 Jon: D. 10 

Mike: Good job jon! 10 is the correct answer! And for the daily double Alex, here it is...True or False? Jay-Z put together the full sound track for the 2007 motion picture "American Gangster"
(now in my head i kept thinking of Gangs of New York...i never saw American Gangster)
Response: Lara: false Jon: True 

Mike: Jon's on a roll, it's True! Last one, Jay-Z did two calaboration albums with which 2 artists?

now, he called me and gave me the answer...i want you kiddies to let me know what you think...no google'ing or bing'ing or itunes'ing...let me know your answers!!!

have a great weekend!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Let the spending begin!

Whoever said money can't buy happiness simply didn't know where to go shopping. 
– Bo Derek 

--

I was recently hired for a part time job to get me through the holidays. Starting Saturday I'll be working at Strongsville mall at a kiosk.

what will i be selling?
only the coolest Cleveland t-shirts ever!

yep, i got hired by C.L.E. Clothing Co.
The kiosk is there every day till January, however my smiling face will only be there on the weekends.

there are some great shirts printed on American Apparel and they're all about supporting Cleveland!

it's been a while since I've worked retail, so we'll see how it goes. i used to be awesome at selling roller-blades while i worked at Koenigs...yeah, it's been that long.

so this weekend if your out starting your holiday shopping...stop by, chit-chat and I'll sell you some of the awesome shirts.


GO CLEVELAND!!!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

picky petunia


As a child my family's menu consisted of two choices: take it or leave it. – Buddy Hackett 

-- 

Picky Petunia. 

That's the new nick name i got this past weekend. thanks jon. i guess anything is better than rape legs.

i know I'm KIND of a picky eater...but its really not that bad. its quite simple, i don't like spicy stuff and i don't like my tongue to be on fire.

i can find something to eat on any menu. however...if we're talking about Mexican, it might be a little harder. especially when there is tongue and brain on the menu.

yes, TONGUE and BRAIN.

on sunday, after drinking all day for the Browns/Bears game we came back to Amy and Gregs to order some Mexican. i got something simple, Cheese quesadilla and chips and guac. Jon and Greg on the other hand...i gag just thinking about it.

Jon got something with brain on it, and Greg got tongue. Brain and Tongue. Cow brain and Cow tongue!

the craziest thing i've ever eaten would probably be alligator soup...it was in key west when i was little...however, i think it was a trick...can you really eat alligator soup? i'm pretty sure they're endangered. and i'm pretty sure it was just chicken.

so what crazy things have you eaten?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

chi-town weekend recap

Oh Shit!
– Chicago graffiti tag 

--

How time literally flies when you're having fun.
Despite driving 5.5 hours to Chicago, adjusting to CDT, then adjusting to CST, and finally driving 5.5 hours back to EST...the gained and lost hours were totally worth it...

Friday: I did not get lost driving to my friend Amy's. Jon and i only listened to the Jay-Z album 1.5 times. and at one point my left hand went numb front the white knuckle driving i had to go through. i hate driving in the rain at night. Hate it. Beer and awesome conversation proceeded once we finally got unloaded and settled.

Saturday: finished up my Halloween costume. Jon and i brought our bikes and the weather was perfect for riding around Chicago. We went downtown around Michigan ave., got yelled at for riding our bikes in Millennium park, took pics by the big bean, got some Chicago hot dogs, got a Chicago bike map (no offense, but i was kinda disappointed. Pittsburgh's is way better.) We then headed north to Buck-town to see my friends Katie and Natalie. there was this bar by their place that had a petting zoo. yes, goats, pigs, ducks and sheep...in Chicago.


Jon on his bike with John Hancock in the background


 graffiti tag that's all around Amy & Greg's neighborhood


billy goats gruff  

Halloween: Jon and i had two parties to go to. a zombie party hosted by Mike and Aminda...they dressed up as Sunny and Cher as zombies. other fun costumes consisted of: Legends of the Hidden Temple; 3 girls dressed as the Purple, Red and Blue train routes; and some lady carrying around a stuffed skunk. then we headed to a house party...there was swine flu; kat von d, lady gaga, donatella versace, and karl lagerfeld to name a few. Surprisingly we left at our designated midnight curfew. and i took a nap in the taxi on the way home.


Greg & Amy (Mad Hatter & Alice)


Jon & Me (He-Man & She-Ra)


The stuffed skunk


Lady Gaga, Donatella & Karl

Sunday: woke up at 6am to Amy calling us bitches (hehehe). got up and out the door by 7am (i think). found our tailgate by 7:45 and started to enjoy the $25 all you can eat and drink. We walked around the parking lot, and it kinda sucked compared to Muni-Lot tailgating. there was no music. a few corn-hole games and hardly any Bears Tents. The Muni-Lot Morning Warriors will be proud to know that i represented. i bonged a beer, made friends with some Bears fans and made sure that Bears fans knew Browns fans were bigger tailgaters! Out of the 6 of us going to the game 4 of us were browns fans. i totally enjoyed being the minority fan. trying to explain a "brown" to a bears fan was like convincing lady gaga to wear pants. we did have a fun conversation with some bears fans that Browns fans do exists...."we're like urban legends...like unicorns" hence the pictures with our hands on our foreheads...



Kathy, Brian, Amy, Me, Greg & Jon. We totally got our $25 worth!

 
Browns fans are rare in Chicago, just like unicorns

Solider Field: Yes there is a UFO attached to the upper section of the stadium and yes that's where the 4 browns fans sat. it was fun. the bears fans around us were pretty nice. although i had to get inappropriate at some points. I even told a kid Santa didn't exist (only cause he was heckling me first) he said he already knew that...then i apologized (i really felt bad). his dad or uncle or guardian thought it was hilarious and tried to get us to hug. which i was all about, but this little guy was a true bears fan, not even a high five. oh, and he was probably like 10. After i dropped my phone in Amy's beer, we made more unicorn remarks, the bears block our extra point and we lost, it was time to go. finding the Jon and Greg, who sat in the better seats, wasn't that hard. the nap in the cab on the way home was nice. we napped some more, ordered some Mexican and watched the Hangover. what a perfect end to an awesome weekend.


pre phone-in-beer. Go Browns!

Amy and Greg were perfect hosts. the sticky-buns, apple pie and Christmas ale that we brought didn't hurt either! and nothing sucks more than leaving Chicago with another Browns loss. I'm glad i got to see all my Chicago friends and even make a few new ones.

Kathy and Amy, yes you can keep me. i need to be fed at least twice a day and be taken to the bars on a weekly basis. other than that I'm pretty low maintenance.

Until next time Chicago.

How was everyone's Halloween weekend?!?

NOTE: if you are ever in Chicago and looking for a Bears Tailgate the Fork You Tailgating Club is by far the best deal! DO IT!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

worst blogger ever...

You can't teach people to be lazy – either they have it, or they don't.– Dagwood Bumstead quotes 

--

ugh.
i don't even know where to begin. 

when i realized that my last blog took place in chicago i realize how long ago that was. sorry. i'm finally walking normal, however i haven't run since the race...well minus a few football games and some touch downs!

anyways...so after the race i had to celebrate birthdays...happy birthday dad! i was hoping to get in one more round of golf, but the weather was crap. then my brother turned 26 and jon and i went to the first bar in Reminderville.

Yes i grew up in a village. and actually my dad was mayor for almost 10 years! bet you didn't know that.

then i had an engagement party for my friend Jess! it was champaign and cupcakes! who doesn't love that! Congrats Jess and Eric!!! 

so much more happened...and i don't have pics to tell you about it. sad face.

weekend: engagement parties, house warming parties, meet the parents, interviewed with C.L.E. Clothing Co. for holiday help, family dinner for mike, saw where the wild things are, watched the browns loose. :(

week: won kickball game, went to the Tremont Taphouse Yappy Hour with Bagley, found out i got the job with C.L.E., decided what to be for my work halloween party, took a 1/4 day and went to Wendy Park with Bagley, work halloween party!

weekend: won football and had 2 touchdowns, took a brief nap, Hatchel's 30th birthday party, meet up with some old friend on West 6th, saw a bunch of douche bags, went tailgating, went to the browns game, went home for dinner and laundry.

week: won kickball! watching the cavs home opener somewhere downtown.

here are some pics to satisfy everyone. sorry for such the crappy re-cap. i just couldn't have my next blog be about chicago. i'm a CLE girl!!!



mike, claudia, me and jon


bagley, his tongue, the cuyahoga, and CLE at wendy park



scary pic of US Coast Guard building at Wendy Park
  

AJP, Hatchel and me
  

Kerry, Amy and me (not pictured: D-bags)



JV, Jon, me and AJP tailgating in the awesome Muni-Lot


Hope you guys have a great weekend. i swear monday wednesday i'll have a post of this coming halloween weekend. I'll be in Chi-town for halloween parties and Browns/Bears awesomeness!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

will run for cheers! (part two)

Pain is temporary, pride is forever.
– Spectator's Sign At The 2009 Chicago Marathon

--

...and we're off. Me, PB&J and Greg. shuffling our feet closer and closer to the finish line. Greg was planning on finishing in 5 hours and we were planning on finishing in 4:45 so we decided to run together. it was fun. all the cheering all the spectators.

Over 1.5 Million people came to watch the race!

We were at about mile 3.5 when we saw Greg's GF and my long time friend from home Socks. she was able to snap a pic of us.


Me, Greg and PB&J (with our neon gloves and throw away pants!)

The race was absolutely amazing. PB&J and i put our names on the front of our shirts so people could cheer for us. and boy did they! Let me just say that the people of Chicago can really pronounce my name. i think of the hundreds of people cheering only a handful said it wrong. there were some points of the race that i had to go towards the middle cause i couldn't stop smiling from all the cheering!

seeing all these people and kids out on the side of the road was so inspiring. we were able to run up next to them and give them high fives! i love high fives!

right around mile 6 we lost Greg because we decided to wait 15ish minutes in line for the restroom. (note: Chicago calls them toilets, not restrooms. even in restaurants)

the whole north portion of the race was the most crowded with runners and spectators. as we're heading south back into the city we run through Boys Town. By far my most favorite section of the race. there was a stage were these "marines" did some sort of choreographed dance with fake riffles, there were cross dressing prom queens and transvestite cheerleaders! IT. WAS. AWESOME!

shortly after that we were coming up to the half way point. we just got done saying how we think we must have missed PB&Js parents when BAM! her dad calls out to us!

we stop for a quick photo op. which i don't have pics to share. it was so fun.

we're feeling good crossing the bridge to head west out of the city. once we hit mile 15 we were super excited. it was the farthest that PB&J had ever run! ever step was a new record for her. i wish this excitement could've lasted for me.

around mile 17 i started to pay attention to the blisters on my pinky toe and the crowd started to diminish a little. Then out of no-where an angle appeared!

i think it was between mile 19 and 20...this woman, probably around my age. she was standing on the curb with her husband/BF shouting...

"cold beer, get a beer!"

O.M.G. that was just what i needed. i grab the cup from her hand and it was just enough for one swig. down it went and it was good!

next on the course...Chinatown at mile 21.5. that was a lot of fun. they had two dragons at the entrance along with a big arch that says "welcome to chinatown". after china town we ran though the Hispanic area which was fun. everyone was cheering and waving flags.

then finally we make the turn onto Michigan Ave. the last 2.5 miles of the race. We were suppose to see our friend Shibani on the sidelines so we kept a look out. as we were running north back to the city the crowd started getting packed. the cheers were coming from all sides. "Go Lara! Go Jennie! Cleveland Rocks!" it was so exciting.

then i hear the worst thing possible. two people are running next to us..."after this right turn we run up a hill and then turn left for the finish"

A Hill?!? i thought this was a flat course! so i immediately tell PB&J so we can mentally prepare for this "hill". psh. hill my butt. it was at the most an slight incline. and it was actually welcomed. running on a flat course is actually kinda boring for your muscles.

the one thing i noticed...the spectators had stopped cheering. they were just watching us. WTF! i just ran 26 miles. i have .2 to go and your gonna sit and watch quietly! HELLS NO! so what do we do? what any clevelander would do.

we started cheering on the spectators! doing the whole "get up on your feet" type of cheering! and once we could see that beautiful word FINISH up ahead we picked up the pace and crossed that finish line hands above our head in victory!

and soreness. we could hardly walk. no cramps. just stiffness. we had to walk about another .8 miles to get out of the runner area. but we got pictures taken, free beer and our awesome medals!

it was a really fun race. and i'm so proud of PB&J and Greg for completing their first marathon...without walking! PB&J and i finished in 5:26:41 (minus the 15ish for the bathroom). it was the only race were we finished together. we got a little teary-eyed once we got our medals. then quickly dried up and headed to the post race party.

we only stayed for a little. we realized we had to meet up with PB&Js parents to take us to our friends Fazio's so we could take a nap. zzz...

Fun Facts about the Marathon:
• a blind runner beat us
• Sammy Wanjiru (KEN) finished in 2:05:41 (we weren't even at the 1/2)
• Liliya Shobukhova (RUS) finished in 2:25:56 (we still weren't at the 1/2)
• i finished 29,039 and PB&J finished 29,038 out of 33,608 runners!


before the half way point! feeling good!


mini pic of me after the race...with a beer.

how was everyone else's weekend?

will run for cheers! (part one)

Poop if you gotta.
– Spectator's Sign At The 2009 Chicago Marathon 

--

here is a little run down (pun intended) of this past weekend for those who didn't see pics on twitter...

Saturday morning PB&J and i landed at Midway airport all excited for the weekend. we had a beer while we waited for Jen's parents to pick us up. Midway airport is really fun for people watching!

we go straight to the expo. picking up our bibs and chips was a piece of cake. getting our shirts and baggies was maybe a 15 minute wait. when we saw the weather was going to be 32º we decided to buy some neon yellow gloves and hats. it was an awesome expo. we could've easily spent tons of money and time walking around.



me and PB&J with our bibs! Go Plum!


we decided to go downtown and get some Big Bowl for lunch. YUM! and walk around Michigan Ave. PB&J bought a super cute dress from XXI and we went to Nike Town. Nike was a big sponsor for the race which was awesome.

they had this wall outside of the store. everyone's name was on it who was registered for the race! it was so crazy! oh, and inside the store they had free photos where you write your "magic number" (ie your bib number, qualifying time, birthday, whatever). so PB&J and i took a pic.





after that we decided to go back to the hotel, organized all our stuff for the next morning and made some last minute decisions on transportation. PB&J's parents ran over to KMart and picked us up some bananas and "throw-away pants" (thanks!). we went to Mama Luigi's for dinner and carb loaded, along with a nice glass of Cab. in bed and asleep by 10...

...alarm goes off at 4:30am. on the El by 5:30. downtown by 6:30. i think the weather channel said there was a wind chill of 24º. it was so cold we couldn't stretch without twitching. We stop to take a pic of our pace group and sat and waited. Of all the thousands of people running this race, my friend Greg walked by while we were sitting. He was running for Team Fox to support Parkinson's.




At 7:30 the place erupted in cheers. the race started. runners were throwing all sorts of clothes toward the side. then 20 minutes later we cross the starting line.

it was so surreal. so awesome...so how did we do? what was my favorite and least favorite part? stay tuned. part two coming up shortly.

Friday, October 9, 2009

marathon time

Most people run a race to see who is fastest. I run a race to see who has the most guts.
– Steve Prefontaine

-- 

Yippy!
its race time!

the Marathon website says 1 day 21 hours till race time!
OMG 2 days away! 17 weeks of training. this is what i've been waiting for.

to run 26.2 miles with 45,000 other runners! no joke 45,000. its a first come first serve race. which cost $125 just to run. not complaining, just sayin.

it better be worth it. from what i've heard from numerous co-workers, friends and random people...its the best race ever. super flat and there are a ton of people cheering everyone on. roughly about 1.5 million people will be there!

screw the olympics chicago. you have one of the best marathons in one of the best cities!

so if you want to track me on race day click here.
if you're in Chicago cheer me on!

PB&J and i will be out in Bucktown on Sunday night. after the race, a few beers and a nap. in that order.

thanks to all the friends and family who have help support me and put up with all my complaining the past 17 weeks! i couldn't have done it without you!

Oh, and good luck to PB&J, Mark, Greg and all the other runners!

who here has run in the Chicago Marathon? any advice? will you be there?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

i put on for my city...

I don't need too much. Glamour and all that stuff don't excite me. I am just glad I have the game of basketball in my life.
– LeBron James

-- 

So this post was going to be a million different things with a million different topics. and ultimately the most confusing thing to read.

so i trimmed the fat. a lot.
i like that saying "trimming the fat". like, its so easy.
just a snip here and snip there.

this post is all about basketball. and music. mainly LeBron and Jay-Z. duh.

recently my brother gave me a copy of The Blueprint III cd that he recently bought. yes. he paid for it. anyways. when i get a new cd and go to listen to it for the first time i put it on shuffle.

so the first song that comes on for TBPIII is Empire State of Mind featuring Alica Keys. awesome song. just awesome. i immediately listen to the lyrics. This song had me convinced that the rest of the album was going to be an invitation.

an invitation? yes. to LeBron. An musical invite to LeBron from Jay-Z to come to New York.

the first lyric that i heard that peaked my interest was...
...sitting courtside Knicks and Nets give me high fives... 

then the chorus...totally obvi...
In New York,
Concrete jungle where dreams are made of,
There's nothing you can't do,
Now you're in New York,
these streets will make you feel brand new,
big lights will inspire you,
lets hear it for New York, New York, New York 

then there was this lyric...
...shit i made the yankee hat more famous than a yankee can...


(i shudder every time i think of this image) 
ugh. just step on my heart LeBron.

Then the final lyric that put the nail in the coffin. 
If Jesus paying LeBron, I'm paying Dwayne Wade 

After being at tonight's game with the plum and realizing he could only be here for 45 more games (including pre-season/not playoffs)...it makes me want to cry. 

what also makes me want to cry is the awesomeness that is LeBron, Shaq and team. do it to it. i can only hope to get last minute tickets to the home opener. the first half of the first pre-season game was beautiful. including a signature slam dunk by the king himself!

whatever L-bomb decides to do. i'm happy we had him for the time that we did. he is truly an inspiration...and i can't wait to see More Than a Game.

Go Cavs! 

what are your thoughts on LeBron, Jay-Z or the Cavs this season? 

ps. that was the only song that had me fully convinced...there are a few lyrics from some other songs that could be interpreted as talking to LeBron or about him...but it was a little far fetched...even for me.

pss. i'm more convinced that he'll stay since he got Edwards sent to the Jets. And i'm sure Edwards punches to LeBrons friend also helped him get sent to the Jets.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

dolla dolla bill yall

Cash rules everything around me.
– Wyclef Jean

--

Yes. i quoted Wyclef.

anyways. i'm working on a rather interesting post, but its not ready.
so in the mean time i'll just let everyone know that i spent some money.

a few bucks at Michaels Craft, mainly for yarn for a new scarf!
a few more bucks at Jo-Anne Fabrics for my halloween costume and some more yarn for another scarf!
and almost $50 on two new t-shirts at CLE Clothing Company



t-shirts? really? yes.
these two amazing shirts.

 This one i plan on wearing to Chicago next weekend for the plum herself, and for the marathon.
(i wonder how many peeps will say something)


this one i plan on wearing to the home opener.
(i don't have tickets yet, but i look good as arm candy if you need a date)

oh, and they found Delonte! hooray! the championship season can start!!!


talk soon cyber peeps!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

apologies...

Never ruin an apology with an excuse. 
– Kimberly Johnson

--

i want to start off by saying i'm sorry.
i'm sorry for not posting something sooner.
i'm sorry for not being a great blogger.
i'm sorry to the girl at Constantino's for taking the last of the soy sauce for my sushi.
i'm sorry.

those two words can make a situation so much easier to deal with.

i went to happy hour a little while ago with the plum, PB&J, lzone and some others. and we played this awesome game...Revelations. someone picks a topic i.e. biggest pet peeve and you go around the table talking about your pet peeve. mine was when people put toilet paper or paper towels going under instead of going over.

i actually wrote a post about pet peeves but only dealing with running/riding outside.

anyways, today marks the day when the TP/PT pet peeve moves down to number two. sorry TP.

what takes first place you may ask?
not apologizing.

i am a very avid believer of wo/manning-up when you screw up.
and it has to be sincere, not one of those "i'm saying sorry because my mom is making me". i probably say it too much and lessen the apology all together...which is never my intention.

but this revelation didn't happen because someone didn't say i'm sorry. its because someone did. this afternoon i went to Constantino's to grab a quick lunch. as i was walking back and approaching west 9th and st. clair a white POS car pulls up the st. clair hill. clearly blocking the crosswalk lane *grumble*

i had my big sunglasses on so i don't think they were able to see the disgust in my eye. the two men in the car looked over and saw me approaching, realized what they had done and promptly went in reverse to give me ample room to cross the street. as i approached two words came out of the drivers mouth.

so sorry.

i smile, nodded and crossed.
that, i think, might've made my day.

as i walked back to my office i started to think of all the times that people should've said i'm sorry and how much easier, nicer, warm and fuzzier i would've felt. instead, it makes me hate them even more...and i'm really not a hater. just wo/man-up!

PS. i love watching degrassi and hearing them say "sorry" those canadians are soooo funny!

do you say sorry, too much, not enough or never?