Friday, September 30, 2011

#7 ( Part 1 & Part 2)

‎#7 ( Part 1)...Cara German delivered an Illini gift today.... Handmade Illini earrings and necklack, Illini Chocolate, Illini Rice Crispy, Illini Tortilla Chips, and an Illini Cooler/Jug thing. She probably meant for it to serve lemonade but I can't stop thinking about adding some Vodka and having a nice cocktail! I LOVE IT! Cara shared my deep love for the Illini and all things orange and blue and I share a deep love for her and the friendship and support she has given me! Thanks Cara!
#7 (Part 2) Melissa Good surprised me today too and told me she doubled up with Cara. She gave me this beautiful mum plant that I will love, plant in the ground, care for gently, and kill instantly AND shes an Esthetician and she offered to give me a facial after the surgery! YEAH. Melissa and I have only been friends for a short time but her kids are the same age as mine, our hubbies are friends and Im pretty sure she'll be someone in my life for a long time. Thanks Melissa for your kindness!

Thursday, September 29, 2011


Today I got this amazing gift! Something for everyone....Yummy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup and beer bread for the whole family. BEER for Brian and me ( and Octoberfest is my favorite right now for a number of reasons), a homemade CHOCOLATE body scrub just for me, and stick puppets for the kiddos!!!!! Jenn, you spoiled me rotten and I love it!

THankyou, Thankyou, Thankyou!!!!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Today Lori dropped off this beautiful gift to me! She made me the earrings last year and today, today I got one of her designs. My own matching necklace. Its beautiful. Its stunning. Its bold! Its me! I love it. I wore it tonight with sweatpants and slippers. I'm planning my outfit for tomorrow to incorporate it! And all I'm doing is cleaning. Don't you think it will be just the perfect accessory for cleaning?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A Wonderful Day, and Amazing Surprise

Brian told me last week he wanted to plan a special day for us. Just he and I. I was supposed to be cancer free by now so it would have been a celebration but instead, we used it as a day to recharge and just be. We wandered Target and then he took me for a massage while he waited in the lobby. Then to Sunsinger for Octoberfest beer, goat cheese appetizer and shared sandwiches, soups, and salads. And when our bellies couldn't be any fuller, we went to a movie and ate popcorn and candy. Then to the mall to shop for a beerbong. Then to my parents to get Amara then home to Monticello. And what do I see on the table by the door but a stack of magazines, a few other items, and a note.... My dear friend, Kristy, gave me the most beautiful card with dozens of C words other than cancer and told me that she and others who loved me would spend the next 10 days until surgery making me feel great, keeping my mind off of it, and spoiling me.My Countdown to cancer Free!!!! Today Kristy gave me a ton of great magazines, each one very personal to my likes and hobbies, two CDs with music, and her Kindle, since she knows I devour books and love to escape in them.

Kristy, thanks for helping make these next 10 days bearable. This creative gesture is so appreciated and much needed. I feel loved. I feel blessed.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Quad Cities Marathon...Brian's first half!

Brian and I left Galesburg at 5:30 to get to the Quad Cities for the 7:30 start. Brian, with his new look and energy was ready to go!
There was a great crowd and of course, Brian found people to talk to immediately as I stood on a wall with my fancy big zoom lense and snapped away- we were both happy!

Last goodbyes....

and they were off!

The kids, and Brian's parents, met me an hour or so later with signs, ready to cheer Daddy on!

After what seemed like forever, we finally saw Brian. We cheered and yelled and hooted and hollared...but i could tell he wasn't doing well. He wasn't his normal, post run high Bri! All I could do was yell at him and tell him I loved him and run to try to find him at the finish. This is his story.
And my sweet man was at the beer tent, sipping on beer #1 and #2 for the first time after taking a 2 month break from drinking to train. That's the Bri I know and love! He didn't reach his goal but finished his first half in 1 hour 50 minutes!! Impressive.

And our running family continues. I'm so proud of you, Brian! For making this comittment, training your ass off, making huge sacrifices, and completing this run! Never stop RacingHome to us!!!!! We love you!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Dont Take Yourself SO Seriously!

Brian is running a half marathon this weekend. As a way to do something kinda silly and not take himself so seriously, he decided to shave his head into a mohawk and shave his beard into just a weird mustache!


Sage Strut

Today was Lincoln School's 2nd annual Sage Strut. Its a fundraiser to raise money for the PTOs of the three elementary schools. The walk around the HS track for an hour and take pledges to do it. They run through obstacle courses and do silly things to keep them moving and excited for the hour...its great for parents as its the only fundraiser all year- no cookies or wrapping paper or crap to sell.

it was Mara's first Sage Strut and she was so excited!
of course Al was too!

They were pretty much on different sides of the track the whole time but I grabbed them once for this fast photo.

The weather was gorgeous and hundreds of kids, parents, and volunteers walked and had a great time!

Sweet mara's little legs couldn't keep up. She was either running or holding onto Mrs. Munster's hand for support!

Bubba just loved being with his friends!

Mrs. Elliots class

Mrs. Donovan's class

What a great day. What a great fundraiser!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Student of the Week

Alaric is Student of the Week this week and he is so excited and proud! He got to bring in lots of pictures of himself and things he loves, have a "meeting" with all of his class where he could tell him about himself and they could ask questions, and pretty much just being cool! We think so too! Way to go, Bubba!

Soccer Sneak Peek!

More Soccer coming soon. Here are two of my favorites....

Lots of fun on Saturdays this fall!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Such a fun weekend!

We went to our friends house, The Goods, on Friday night for pizza, beer, and children running like crazy!
The boys played StarWars and Battle Force 5 and all things boys and the girls did all they could to keep up!

After an awesome soccer game Saturday, we headed to the square for the Celebration- inflatables, food, and tons of people!

The kids love the games and we navigated carefully through the crowds to get to all the ones they wanted

Skeeball is my favorite!

Mara asked if we could bring this home.

Babysitter for the kids and we headed to the Illini game for a quick tailgate before the game. I know it looks bad here but some of our friends friends didn't know how to shotgun a beer...and since there were no beer bongs, I felt like I needed to participate. That's all it was...just helping the youngins!

brians' bf Benji and his fiance Sara!

We wish we could tailgate before every game.

Then right before we left, someone brought out a bottle of sweet tea vodka. it smelled just like sweet tea-yum!

and it tasted like vodka! YUCK!!!!

So fun going to a night game!

Then the next morning we headed to church in Bears gear. it didn't help them win but dont my favorite people look great?

and Sunday after church we went out for family dinner and I got to snuggle with my favorite nephew, Jack! Such a sweetie!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

My MUST HAVE of the Season- An Octobong Beer Bong!!!!

I know, I know. This post may shock a few of my Monticello Mommy friends or maybe a church friend or two. But if you knew me in highschool or college or have talked to me recently on the soccer field ( I'll explain later) this wish list item comes as no surprise. I write this with shout outs to my favorite bong enthusiasts...Burge, Josh, Jaci, Alicia, Sammy, Justin, and Blake!

I did my first beer bong in highschool. Not sure where or when ( surprisingly enough). But I remember liking it and being pretty good at it. Most everyone else sprayed beer on themselves or had too much foam but not me. I was great from the beginning and they became my favorite way of consuming beer.

The first time I went to True Value in Round Barn to buy supplies for a bong, I was so nervous. I found the right sized funnel right away but I was confused on the tubing. As always, one of the old man worker guys was on me in a minute asking for help. I told him I needed tubing and to point me in the right direction. He did. I would have been fine if he just left me alone but he didnt. He wanted to be the helpful hardware man. He asked how much I needed and of what size. I looked down at my funnel. I then tried to look at the length of my arm to envision just how many feet I would need. Damn! Why didn't I measure before I got there. He looked right at me and said

" For a beer bong of that size, you probably need 3 feet. Lets make sure we get the right sized tubing so its a tight fit" With a smile, we worked together and I was out of the True Value in minutes with my new favorite toy of high school. They really are pretty helpful there!

I taught dozens of people to bong beers in highschool and when I got to college it was no different. I remember being at a party one of the first week of being a Zeta and my big sister, Jaci, has never done one before. I took the bong at the apartment party and talked her through it step by step. She did amazing her first time! Such a proud little sister I was of her! And that Christmas when other little sisters were giving their bigs cute picture frames or candles, I had made Jaci her very own bong ( I even decorated it for her). Classy Katie, right?

Then Spring Break my freshman year in Panama City. It was a blur of a week. So much fun! And my eyes were opened to a new kind of bong...a homemade FOUR PERSON beer bong! I thought it was beautiful and I spent hours each day on the beach with mostly guys ( as no one else would do it) mastering this new creature. I came home and shared the news of this new invention but never saw another one again. Lots more bonging in college and then tried to be mature for a decade or so.

Our best friends go on a Memorial Day weekend every year and we've never been able to attend because of the kids ( we were the only one who had them then). They beer bonged. I saw pictures. I salivated. Sam was their ring leader and created an extra long tube that would drape over the side of a balcony if needed. I was jealous. Again, I tried to move on and be mature, not wanting to sound silly about wanting a beer bong in my 30's. Until a year ago....At a tailgate with some friends when the Illini was playing Southern, we found ourselves next to some roudy college kids from SIU. We had gotten fairly roudy ourselves so it was no problem. And then....whats that? What do I see? UHHHHHHHHH ( thats the sound of the heavens opening up), I look over and these students had an EIGHT PERSON BEER BONG! Not only that, they had designed a fancy hanging contraption. It was so sweet!

I asked our tailgating friends about it and they said they had been watching the spectacle for awhile. I looked at Bri, "I want to do it!"

"Go for it. bring a beer with you"
So, with my beer in hand, I asked if I could get in on the next round. And I did. "It's so good! Once it hit's your lips, It's so good!" I felt like Will Farrel in Old School. I was hooked.

I told Brian I wanted one. We even looked on the internet. We didn't buy one. I let it go. Kinda. But not really.

Then in July at a wedding while catching up with old friends, that tailgate came up again. And my friend, Josh pulls out his phone and shows me this

"Not enough. I said, I need more!" We searched the internet while at the bar and found LOVE IT!

Fast forward another month. Tailgate season has begun. Kindergarten soccer too. We are at the first soccer practice, talking about tailgating that coming weekend and what does Bri bring up with his friends, Blake & Justin? Beer bonging. And the octobong. And the tailgate last year. And then the best thing happened...Blake and Justin got excited. They said we should buy it!

Last night, they asked where it was and why it hadn't been purchased yet. We chuckled about buying it and having it in the back of the minivan and bringing it to the next soccer game and taking turns heading to the car to partake. Or perhaps having our own tailgate before or after soccer or maybe even a party just to welcome it to Monticello. I loved it!

I went home and searched again. They are available at Spencer gifts. Only $49. Not really in my budget right now but I'm working on it. I'm going to start my little Dave Ramsey envelope and start my beer bong fund immediately.

Send your dollars my way if you want to contribute and participate as a part owner. It can be borrowed for tailgates, BBQ's, parties, or even kindergarten soccer games!!! I'll keep you updated on the bong fund and any parties planned for it's initiation into society.