Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Undercover agents

Joe and I have been on a secret mission for the last few weeks as "secret shoppers" for a local restaurant company. I know it sounds like everyone's dream job but I will say that it is actually a bit more stressful than I had envisioned. We have to visit certain restaurants on certain weeks and certain days of the week. Our hectic schedule has made it sometimes difficult to fit in our meal on a scheduled night and then we have an hour of paperwork to do afterwards. During the meal we have so much to think about and focus on that I am not sure we actually relax. So far, it has been an eye-opener and I am certain my dining experiences will never be the same. Since we each have to order three courses it's definitely not waistline friendly either but I am happy to experience what will probably be my one and only crack at being a professional food critic!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Galveston - Day Three

My last day in Galveston, Kate and I played a very competitive round of mini golf before I had to head to the airport. (Have I mentioned before that I love mini golf? I do!!) We had a really great time and the fact that there was an ocean view was even better. Thank you, Boone and Kate for a wonderful mini vacation!

Kate with our new friend

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Galveston - Day Two

Day two in Galveston we took a ferry ride to Bolivar as Kate assured me we'd see dolphins. In fact, we saw so many that I completely lost track - they were everywhere! After the ferry ride, we did more shopping, had lunch at a great little cafe and eventually made our way to an old fashioned soda shop and candy store. Also on the agenda was a trip to the local fish market where we picked up fresh shrimp so Boone could make us some creole for dinner - yum!

Watching dolphins on the ferry
My tour guide, Kate

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Galveston - Day One

Monday morning I headed to Galveston, Texas for a little fun in the sun with my friends Boone & Kate. (The kiddos, Jackson and Everett, were off visiting their grandparents.) I last saw Kate almost three years ago when we celebrated my birthday in Vegas. I, on the other hand, had been promising to come to Galveston for about four years...you know how life gets...anyway, I finished my classes last week so it was the perfect way to celebrate a little break between quarters. And now that I am ready for summer, it's almost time for fall!

Kanye West has nothing on us!
Boone and Kate. Boone was a good sport about having two obnoxious girls around. Thankfully he found solace in the xBox for most of my visit.
You can see the water line from Hurricane Ike behind me. What's even crazier is that I am already standing on a pretty big curb that you can't see in the picture.
We basically think we are too cool to do stupid things...prim and proper all the time.  

After a little shopping on The Strand, Kate and I enjoyed the ocean view for a bit. From here we went on to eat a fabulous fresh seafood meal.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Date night

Took Joe to his very first John Mayer concert last night. I am not saying he is a convert but dare I say that he didn't hate it? We went with another couple I know from church who just so happened to have tickets in the row in front of us and live near us so we all rode together. After synching his Kindle to his iPhone Joe started out the evening trying to ever so casually "read" without drawing too much attention. After about the second song, he put away his phone for good and seemed genuinely interested. I think he was much more impressed by JM's band that he'd expected. Especially once he realized he had seen one of the guys perform before - with Paul McCartney. He may not be begging to go again but I'm going to consider his first John Mayer show a win.

Friday, August 06, 2010

The Dog Whisperer

Joe and I had a dog trainer come to our house today to work with Crumley. Crumley seems to think he owns the neighborhood so we have had problems walking him in the near vicinity of another dog without him totally freaking out; it's extremely embarrassing and makes him a bit of a problem. This is also why we don't take him to the dog park.

Our trainer was amazing. He showed up and immediately took control of Crumley. First he took him out on a walk alone and then later he had Joe and I go with him after he'd made his own assessments. We got lucky and saw several other dogs outside today. The first few times Crumley totally freaked out, as predicted, whenever we'd see another dog. By the end of our hour with the trainer, Crumley was walking right past other dogs and not even turning his head to look at them - wow. I had him at the end during those times while Joe and the trainer just stood back and watched. I almost wanted to cry because I was so proud of him! What a totally different labradoodle! So we'll see if we can keep it up. Right now, we need to walk both dogs seperately and do some "work" with Crumley inside...and Iris, too. And the trainer gave us some tips on how to teach the dogs to not freak out every time someone is at the door. That will be for a whole other day. But we are trying to change Crumley's way of thinking. He was in the routine, especially with me, that his job was to be the protector and now we are teaching him that his job is to just be a dog and we'll let him know if we need anything else from him.

We have to change other "little" things, too. Like no more sitting on us. Joe and I both think it's adorable for our big dog to come sit on our lap whenever we're on the floor but that's a no-no. And no more feeding the dogs breakfast or dinner until after we've eaten first. Just subtle changes that will hopefully add up to a little more dog obedience. This might prove to be the best money we've ever spent. Keep your fingers crossed!

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Lincoln home

When I was in middle school, I believe in the sixth grade, I did all the "Lincoln stuff" with my parents and sister. Now, as an adult, I keep thinking that I should revisit some of those sites as I drive through Springfield each time I travel to and from Missouri. Sunday, Joe and I decided to stop at the Lincoln Home. Turns out, the tour had about a two hour wait so we didn't go in but we had fun looking around and plan on eventually visiting each of the historical sites in the area.

The final rose goes to...

My favorite guilty pleasure is now a video game. Never mind that I am married and almost 33, I am secretly a little intrigued. However, since I am not 14, I don't think I can justify playing...being an adult is hard sometimes.

Monday, August 02, 2010


Joe and I traveled to Missouri on Friday to meet our new niece and visit my family. It was a short trip as we left Sunday morning to come back but we had a nice time. Saturday we were able to go visit my grandma and took her to the "Old Settlers" parade which turned out to be a lot more fun than I had anticipated. (To clarify, I thought spending time with my grandma would be fun but had doubts about the parade.) While at the parade, Joe had his first ever deep fried Twinkie - it was love at first bite.

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