Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Next American Idol?

Jessi called me around 5:20 pm Monday night saying that she was going to audition in St. Louis and she wanted to know if I would go with her. Apparantely, she has wanted to go for a while and didn't tell anyone. She decided that it was "now or never" and she committed. I have a deeper level of respect for her because she had the "balls" to pursue her dreams. So, after my cousin left, I realized that she was serious, and made arrangements to have him go elsewhere. We then spent a while packing and booking a place. We ate through a drive thru and were off to St. Louis.

American Idol requires that you have a wristband and ticket to get in so we drove straight to the Scottrade Center in the hopes that we would get them. We lucked out, if we had waited til morning they would have been out. We stayed at the Drury Inn next to the Union Station and we got about 1-2 hours of sleep. They called all the registrants to the building by 5 am. This is where we got to sit outside on concrete for nearly 3 hours- so NOT FUN! At 8 when they got us moving we were feeling really excited for what was to come. Turns out, NOT SO FUN was to come. We were seated in our designated area of the arena and told to do different chants for the tv camera. This went on for at least an hour. Then, we were told how the process worked. So, we watched them finally start to audition by 9:30 (felt like 5pm) and we realized after 2 hours that our section wouldn't be called for at least 5 hours. So, 13 hours after we were told to be there, Jessi finally got to sing for 30 sec. Even though she didn't make it through I thought she was pretty incredible for trying. We drove home and it was a pretty long drive back when we waded through construction zones on little sleep but we made it just fine. Let me tell you that this was one of the craziest spurt-of-the-moment trips I've ever made. One I'm sure I'm not likely to forget.

Jessi, 5am waiting in the line

We look alert for 5am

The sun is coming up!

Filming, "Welcome to St. Louis" for American Idol, Ryan SeaCrest was there but no judges

Jessi is looking on as Ryan Seacrest gets us "pumped"

The arena is transformed to a singing center for the producers (the judges for the day). There were approximately 10,000 auditioners total which means that about 9, 960 were ahead of us.

She is lucky to have a friend like me

American Idol

She sings for the judge

She reluctanly posed for the picture at the Union Station

Monday, June 27, 2011

Cars 2

On Monday afternoon, my cousin decided that he wanted to see Cars 2. I have to say that I rather enjoyed that movie! I didn't care for the first one and I thought this was a great international delight! ;-) Although I did learn that having a movie theater basement saves me a ton o'money.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Family Reunion

On Sunday, we had a family reunion in Pesotum. We had a nice potluck lunch and got to hang out with family. I was surprised by the large amount of people that I did not know. We took a few family portraits outside of my grandparent's house. It has been in the family since 1868. It will likely sell this year so we took this (last) opportunity to get pictures taken in the yard.

Grandma with her "Holly-Hocks"

Dad's Cousins

Larry & Edith's Kids & Grandkids (Only about 1/4 of the family)

Friday, June 24, 2011

Giant Garage Sale = Success

Well, the day was a success in my book, even Cooper baby made $2 selling some old toys he doesn't play with anymore. Setting up a garage sale is a lot of hard work. I couldn't have done it without the help from family! Thanks Dad for bringing tables and to Aunt Kathy for bringing clothing racks. Thanks to Chris for getting cash and counting money as well as helping put up signs. Did I mention that garage sales are a ton of work??? I'm very happy that we had mild weather and that my sister was very helpful in the process. I made $160 which all in all is pretty good for items I no longer wanted.

See pictures of the day below.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Savings, Sailfin and Poo?? Oh My!!

Day #5 of babysitting Michael went like this...

10am- Michael arrives at our house. We make a plan to go to the library but on the way stop at a nearby garage sale. I found a "too good to pass up" book shelf and I wanted to bring it home then in case we found anymore goodies on the way. Well, this is when that anonymous dog that left a generous donation (unbeknowst to Michael) in our yard comes into play. Well, Michael did step in this 'generous donation' so he got to walk around to the backyard and get sprayed down with a hose. This caused his shoes to be quite wet and we stayed home to let the shoes dry out for about an hour.

We did make it out to the library and I am pleased that he is also a Percy Jackson fan! (Did I mention I'm totally in LOVE with these books?)

We made a trip to CVS, which made it onto my FB page where I shopped competitevely with my cousin Michael. Lets just say that one of us blew the other "out of the water". I'll update about this at a later time. I also bumped into (figuratively of course) our mutual grandma in the parking lot!

From there, we got to go to Sailfin. Turns out, he has never gone there before! I LOVE this place. I'd totally have a fish tank if it was entirely maintenance free... but as I've learned, I'd be doing all the "maintaining." So, I'm happy to let them take care of the sea creatures while I just occassionally take a look.

Here are some pictures of the visit.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A Day to Remember

Today, Michael and I had a great day! We got to play games, watch a movie, and swim at the beautiful Urbana Aquatic Center. I hadn't been there before but it was really nice. I'll definitely be going back.

Monday, June 13, 2011

2nd Anniversary

So, today marks the day that Chris and I have been married for two years! Phew, time flies when you are having fun! I LOVE that man so much! Best decision ever! (Is that right before or after getting Coops?)

Today I got to play with Michael and boy we know how to have fun! We had a hula hoop competition and Michael made an obstacle course to run. We also made smoothies and played board games. Chris taught him how to play 'Risk' and we watched "Percy Jackson: The Lightning Thief" in the basement while playing with glow sticks. I'd say it was a full day.

Cooper also got a hair cut today and he just looks so stinking cute!!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

3.5 Month Photo Shoot

We had some down time in Vegas today so I snapped these of my nephew...

Sunday, June 5, 2011

First Full Day in Vegas- Sunday May 5

Chris, Rose, and I explored “The Strip”. We visited Aria and I won $27.50 there.

We met up with the rest of the gang inside of Caesar’s Palace where we had lunch at The Cheesecake Factory, yum!! They had a nice aquarium and Olivia and I scoped it out. We got to see a free show and I used my winnings to buy a cute dress at H&M. Rose, Mike and the babies went back and Jim, Steph, Chris and I walked around discovering more. We also stopped to enjoy Ghiradelli ice cream and explored lots of sites. We went to see the dolphin tank but decided to wait for the kids to see it.
We went to see Penn & Teller in the evening then walked through the Venetian and had a yummy Italian pizza. We got to go blow some money at the slots. I should’ve stopped when I won $5 but I kept going and ended up losing $15. Sad!! All in all the day was fun and we ended up back at home at 2am.

Friday, June 3, 2011

And, we're off!

Summer began yesterday at 11am when I got home from work. School is out for summer!

Yesterday turned out to be a fairly productive day. I got three scrapbook pages done and am halfway through "The Curse of the Titans." And, all the dishes magically got done and floors got swept. We have that "fairy" as Chris calls it at our house.

Today I've been eating leftovers, doing laundry, packing, shopping and maybe some more scrapbooking. The whole "Extreme Couponing" class was a flop because they were out of coupons when I got there and the place (County Market) was really too noisy to hear anything. Since I was parked in a permit only parking I just left empty-handed. Oh well.

So, I'm leaving for vacation tomorrow. I am a bit anxious about being away from my baby, Cooper, for so long but I imagine the trip will be great.