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    Archive for November 2008

    Wednesday, November 26, 2008

    Benjamin: "Daddy, can I watch a movie?"
    Mike: "Absolutely!"
    Benjamin: (obviously not understanding) "After Lucy???"

    Thursday, November 20, 2008

    Despite feeling extremely under the weather, I packed up the bags Friday afternoon so we could travel up to the twin cities for a busy weekend. First we drove up to Mound to stay with Grandma Chris and Grandpa Ed. Mom and I were supposed to go to a craft fair Friday afternoon, but I wasn't up for it, so we just spent a relaxing evening at their house. We also ate some magical Thai food that had some crazy healing powers because I was feeling much better when I got up Saturday morning. We had big plans to meet Joe, Jen, AJ and John at Macy's in Minneapolis for our yearly tradition of visiting Santa and seeing the Auditorium display. We met them about 10:30 and went straight up to the "A Day in the Life of an Elf" display, which luckily didn't have too much of line yet.

    I think the boys really enjoyed seeing the animated figures of elves dancing around. After winding our way through the colorful scenes, we hopped in another line, this time to see the big man in the red suit. The Santa there this year was definitely better than we've seen in a while

    and it was the first time the 2 older boys could sit on his lap by themselves, without crying! Benjamin was able to tell Santa that he wants a "Mickey Mouse toy" (no idea what that means!) and a "REAL guitar." I was able to get some really great pictures with my new fancy camera!!

    After our Macy's excursion, we went back to Joe and Jen's for a neat treat - they brought in a lady to do a Traveling Vineyard party. You are able to taste and order 5 wines and then there are cheeses and chocolates and stuff to munch on. It was really fun! Later that night my three lovely sisters-in-law took me out to celebrate my birthday.

    They surprised me with reservations at W.A. Frost & Company in St. Paul. The food was awesome and the ambience was so fancy! We dined like queens.

    I must have pushed myself a little too far on Saturday with my cold because I felt even worse on Sunday, so I spent the day napping at Mom and Dad's house while everyone (Mike, Andy, Bert, Dan, Benjamin, Mom and Dad) watched the Packers/Bears game. The Schmitts were happy with the Packers win.

    Tomorrow's the big 3-0 for me. Wonder if I'll feel any different - maybe weaker knees, fading memory, a little more gray hair!? Haha!!

    A Groovy Surprise

    Tuesday, November 11, 2008

    Jessica's 30th Birthday Party - Amber, Jessica and Kristen

    I was surprised with an early 30th birthday party this weekend thrown so brilliantly by Mike and my parents. The theme was the 1970's and several people really got into the spirit by dressing up! It was awesome!! My cousins Roland and Cicely and my friends Kristen and Jamie with their little guy, Gavin, even drove up from Illinois for the party, I couldn't believe it!

    My friend Lora and I went scrapbooking all day on Saturday, which was really fun. I didn't know what was coming, but I had been expecting that something may possibly be happening. People kept trying to throw me off track though and it was working pretty well, I just wasn't sure what to expect! When she suggested going out for dinner afterward, I kinda thought maybe a party was planned, but still didn't know for sure. I may have had my suspicions but I was certainly surprised to a) see so many people there and b) see my husband dressed up like Mork from Mork and Mindy, haha!! The party was at my favorite restaurant, Whistle Binkies. Mom and Dad had blown up HUGE photos of me through the years and decorated the walls with them, it was so funny.

    The cake even had a classic picture of me on it! Mike put together a Jessica trivia game for everyone to play and the winners (Kristen and Jamie) got a Bozo the Clown record - one my childhood favorites!

    Benjamin was busy with all of his friends at the party - Sidney, Reese, AJ, Ethan and Gavin all danced to the 70's music and played together so well. I received so many cool and generous gifts, but the best was from Mike and Benjamin. They got me the new camera I had been hoping for!!

    I have been spending lots of time practicing with it. I think Benjamin is already tired of me taking his picture. You can see some of my handiwork on our flickr site. The camera does so many cool things!

    Fortunately, for me, my birthday season is not over yet! I have a celebration planned for Saturday by my sisters-in-law and I am even treating myself with a couple of days off of work on my actual birthdate and the day after. I'm trying to stretch this thing out as long as I can......

    Tricks, Treats and Trails

    Tuesday, November 04, 2008

    What a busy Halloween weekend we had!

    Benjamin was pretty sick all last week with a fever on and off, so we took it easy Friday (Halloween) during the day. Luckily, he felt better in the evening and he was well enough to trick-or-treat for about an hour or so in our neighborhood. Mike and I also dressed up in our costumes before taking him out and we got some pretty nice comments from the people in our neighborhood about all of our costumes. Mike was Marty McFly from Back to the Future, I was Lucy Ricardo from I Love Lucy and Benjamin wore his homemade T-Rex costume. We all looked great!

    After roaming the streets, we packed up and headed over to Laura and Eric's house for a small Halloween party with the kids and adults. Everyone there looked great in their costumes, especially Jen and Nate who got extra crafty this year, dressing up as a crayon and Rubix Cube!

    On Saturday morning, we were supposed to depart for the Tomah/Sparta area for the Rails-to-Trails Marathon that Mike was planning to run, but Benjamin was still pretty sick. Luckily, Grandma Chris and Grandpa Ed came to the rescue and drove down to stay with Benjamin at our house until we got back on Sunday. So Mike and I had an unexpected night away, which gave Mike the opportunity to get a night of uninterrupted sleep, for which we were both grateful! The race began at 8am on Sunday. It was a perfect day weather-wise for running, though the wind did pick up a little toward the end of the race. While Mike was off with some of our Rochester running friends who were also running the half marathon, I drove to my spectating spot (in the middle of nowhere Wisconsin!). I had big plans for an awesome cheering station with Benjamin's cd player, a cd full of fun running songs, a pink wig, a red boa and some cowbells.

    When the batteries pooped out about 4 minutes into the cd, I should have known that the great day we had hoped for was not to be! I cheered my heart out for Mike, our friends and the other runners at about miles 4 and 7 of the half (I think) and mile 20 of the full. When Mike ran up to me for the second time, at about mile 20, he told me that his "wheels were coming off" and he was cramping up big time.

    After he passed, I got in the car and raced down to the finish line/mile 23 (yes, they made the runners run PAST the finish line for their last 5k of the race, just cruel). Mike looked pretty haggard at mile 23, but he was probably going to pull off the 3h:45min run that he had planned on. Unfortunately after he passed us the cramping got worse and he added some more time to his finish of 3h:57min. I know he is disheartened at his performance, but he learned so much about his limits and what not to do/what to do for next time. This was his ninth marathon and to wait until now to turn in a bad race is pretty darn good, I think! He is planning to do the Colorado Marathon in Fort Collins in May for his next race.

    I got news that an acting opportunity that I did a few months ago finally came to fruition recently. The History Center of Olmsted County (the county Rochester is in) is recreating the election of 1872 on their website with a series of taped campaign speeches. I wrote the script for and performed the Victoria Woodhull (first woman to run for president) speech. Visit this website to view the videos and vote in the election! The results are supposed to be revealed on December 1st, hopefully I (Victoria) win!