Please Note: Matt has pointed out to me that I called him this morning, and he called me yesterday morning. Please note this as you are reading the post about my morning. I thought he called me because the reminder on my phone went off and it sounds like my phone ringing and I was half asleep during it all! Thank you.
So, anyone that knows me knows I'm not a morning person. This morning this was especially true...Matt called before my alarm went off to tell me he was up and ready for Day 2 of the Bar. I turned off the alarm because I was "awake," but then I fell back asleep and didn't wake back up until 7:20. I have to leave at 7:40 for work. Needless to say, I didn't leave on time. My work and boss are pretty relaxed, so I wasn't really worried about running late. So, I arrive at work about 8:10, only to find the whole office awaiting my arrival! Tomorrow is my last day of work full-time, so they decided to bring me presents today! I was so embarrasesed because I was late and I had 5 people just sitting and waiting! Then, when I realized what my present was, I was even more embarrassed!! Here's a picture...
Amber and Shelly decided that since Matt moved away I needed an inflatable husband to take his place! He was sitting in my chair when I arrived at work! The box says "Low Maintenance Partner for a stress free, easy life." I laughed...A lot. Peggy (my boss) got me a strand of freshwater pearls and Loye bought me the pearl earrings. I'm wearing both in the picture. Anyway, it was definitely a good way to brighten up a somewhat stressful, running late morning!
Well, I didn't reach my goal of having everything packed up and ready to go by yesterday. It has been non-stop packing since I got up this morning. Well, to be honest I haven't really been that motivated. So it's been more like pack awhile, check my email, pack some more, look at facebook, and so on. Our TV is disconnected, so our only form of entertainment is surfing the internet! Anyway, I have realized that packing up a house takes much longer than packing an apartment, or a dorm room! And, when you're packing things to go to 3 different places I think it takes even longer! I feel like I have been packing for months! I did start several weeks ago, just so I could spread it out a bit. I have now taken 4 loads to the house where I'll be staying, each time saying to myself "that should be my last load, except for a few clothes." Today I took a car full of stuff over there and again I thought it would be my last load...WRONG! Although I knew I would have some hanging clothes and my toiletries still to move, as I sit on the futon (the only piece of furniture left in our living room) and look around, I can already see things that I need to take to Rebecca's house! I have come to the conclusion that we have too much stuff. I'm not even a pack rat, and it seems like our stuff just keeps multiplying! Oh well, I'm sure I'll finish in time to fly to Texas on Thursday!
Matt's stuff is all piled up in the dining room, and besides a few things from the kitchen, he is actually pretty much ready to go. He leaves tomorrow to drive to Texas, relax on Monday, and start the Bar Exam bright and early on Tuesday. Already the nerves have started to kick in. He handles stress really well, and generally I can't even tell if he's stressed, but it's starting to show just a little. I have no doubt that he's going to pass with flying colors, but I can imagine that it's probably one of the most stressful situations he will ever face. He has been in school for 3 years, studying intensely for 8 weeks, and now it all comes down to a 3 day test. I think I might be more stressed than he is! Well, I should get back to packing, and trying to find something for dinner. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!
So I changed the header for our blog, since Matt will be in Chicago and I'll be in Montgomery. Is it even called a header? I'm not sure. I couldn't think of a catchy title, so I settled for this. Any creative ideas for a catchy title would be given consideration for replacing this title! And...what do you think about the new look?
Our life is a little crazy right now. We've been busy packing up our house and organizing all of our things into 3 piles: going with Matt, going with Lori, or going to storage. I always thought moving was difficult, but moving to 3 different places at once is outrageous! And, Matt has been so busy studying for the Bar, I've been trying to do all the packing by myself so I don't take away from his study time. Passing the Bar is much more important than having everything neatly packed into boxes! He has helped during his "study breaks," although I think he uses packing as an excuse to stop studying! I have most of my stuff moved to Rebecca's house (my new place of residence for the next few months), and most of Matt's stuff is stacked neatly in the dining room. We still need to move the furniture that he is taking to the dining room and a couple of "big" items (the coffee table, washer/dryer), out to the storage shed. I'll definitely have to enlist Matt's help (and most likely the help of some other boy) to move that stuff! My hope is to have everything packed, moved or stacked up by Friday, because after that things will be really crazy! Here's our schedule for the next week: Friday (25th): going away party for Matt with a few friends Saturday (26th): final bit of Bar Exam study Saturday morning, attend a wedding Saturday night, Sunday (27th): Matt teaches his last Bible Class Sunday morning and leaves immediately after church for Dallas. Tuesday (29th): The Bar Exam starts and lasts until Thursday Thursday (31st): my last day of work (full-time) and I leave work early so I can fly to Dallas to meet Matt. Stay the night Thursday night with Emily in Dallas. Friday(Aug 1): camping in Oklahoma with friends on Friday & Saturday night Sunday (3rd): go to Duncan for a few days (my dad's birthday) Wednesday (6th): to OKC for wedding preparation Thursday & Friday (7th-8th): Jen's Wedding (matt's sister) Saturday (9th): to Tulsa to unpack wedding decorations Sunday (10th): drive back to Alabama Monday (11th): Matt leaves for Chicago, I start my internship.
Whew. Ok, so that's actually the next 2 weeks and probably more than you'd want to know, but I thought I'd share. I think writing it all out helps me feel less stressed (until I read back over it). After Matt leaves for Dallas, I'll have to pack up the final few things (the kitchen essentials that he'll take with him, my "work" clothes that I haven't moved yet, etc). All the craziness will probably help me keep from getting sad that Matt is leaving (maybe). I feel like I've prepared myself for it, but we'll see on August 11th when it's all over and he is driving to Chicago! Anyway, just thought I'd put a quick update on our lives for the next few weeks. Please pray for Matt next week as he's taking the Texas Bar Exam! Have a great day!
Matt and I went to see George Jones (the "possum") tonight. As with most pictures from concerts, they're not very good. But I did take a video of "He Stopped Loving Her Today," one of George's most famous songs. I just tried to upload it but it's not working right now. So, for now, here's one picture.
This is a picture we took before we left for the concert. I thought it turned out good! Now I'm off to bed. Love you all!
Matt decided to start his own blog. Check it out: The Perpetual Student P.S. He thinks I'm his secretary and he dictated his newest post for me to type. Yes, I was bored at 10:45 at night and sat here and typed it for him!
When I left off on the last post, we had just finished watching the fireworks with over a million people! Well, those 1 million people had to get home somehow, and since the Chicago public transportation is the primary source of transportation, we rode back home with what felt like a million people. We were so packed in the subway that at one point I couldn't even fit both of my feet on the ground. And we were packed in so tightly that there was no need to hold on when the train started because no one could move anywhere! In fact, Matt was at the door and someone was pushing him trying to get on the train but there were so many people not one more person could shove in. I wish I had a picture, because I'm sure it looked pretty crazy!
The rest of the weekend was pretty relaxed, and we had a good time just enjoying the city. Friday morning we slept in so we could recuperate from the all night drive the night before. Then we headed down to Wrigley Field for some pictures.
After Wrigley, we went back to the commune for a cookout. (Side Note: I just realized I may not have previously explained the commune. It's where we were staying during this trip to Chicago, and where Matt was planning to live when he moves there. We call it the commune because it actually used to be a commune in the 70's, but now it's an "intentional community." The easiest way to explain it is dorm-style living for adults. The people that live there are all really nice. They live in this dorm place and have a janitor that cleans the bathrooms and a cook that cooks dinner every night. They "share resources" so it's more economical and environmentally friendly. Matt found out about it because a guy that goes to the church we visited on our last trip to Chicago lives there. I know it sounds weird, and it kinda is). Anyway, we stayed at the commune and they invited us for a 4th of July cookout. So we went back (free lunch can't be passed up) and helped get things ready for the cookout. The only strange part of the lunch was, instead of saying a prayer, some guy started talking about our reason for gathering and asked what spirit we should invite to be with us for the occasion (me, Matt, Kayla and Stephen all had the same thought...how about the Holy Spirit?!?). Anyway, that was strange and we all just kind of looked at each other, but it was free and certainly a cultural and educational experience! After the cookout, we headed downtown so Kayla & Stephen could visit the Field Museum. Matt & I had already been, so we just walked by Lake Michigan and chatted. It was a beautiful day outside, although slightly chilly on the lake!
Matt thought I looked funny wrapped up in his sweatshirt!
There were SO MANY boats on Lake Michigan!
We took a water taxi over to Navy Pier where there were tons of people! We decided it was too crowded & we were starving so we headed over the Giordano's (the best pizza ever) and decided to go back to Navy Pier on Saturday. If you ever get the chance to go to Chicago, you should DEFINITELY eat at Giordano's! i can't even describe how good this pizza is, but it's amazing!! Saturday started with a trip to IKEA!!! If you've never been to Ikea, and you like decorating, you should DEFINITELY go! I could spend an entire day and a TON of money in there! Those of you who know me know that I don't generally spend money on anything, but take me to Ikea and I'm in trouble! Since Matt's planning to move to Chicago, and we thought we had his living situation figured out, we had a few things that we needed to buy and this was the perfect opportunity. We got some curtains and storage boxes and a few other things and it was so fun! Kayla loved it too! Then it was back over to Navy Pier for a ride on the ferris wheel and some putt-putt golf for Matty's birthday. Oh yeah, Saturday was Matt's birthday! I got him a new digital camera that took all the pictures in this post (I gave it to him when we got to Chicago, a little early).
In the Botanical Gardens at Navy Pier
Ferris Wheel at Navy Pier--Stephen didn't tell us he was scared of heights until we were at the top!
Top of the Ferris Wheel...
Our last day in Chicago ended with dinner at Cheesecake Factory and one last train ride back to the commune. It was Saturday night that made me decide perhaps the commune was not the place for Matt to live (especially if I am going to join him in January!). While we were all trying to sleep, several people were having a fight down on the street corner. We could hear them yelling for a couple of hours. Although the commune seems safe, the neighborhood made me pretty uncomfortable. So, when we got home, Matt started looking for a different place to live. He found an apartment, closer to downtown in a really good part of town. It's about the size of a shoebox, but I think it will be better all around. Matt will be closer to school (only 3 train stops away, instead of 12) and it's in a really nice part of town. Here's a link to the website... http://www.bjbgoldcoast.com/site/property/general/2 If you go to the site and click on "virtual tours," his studio apt should be like Studio 2 on the virtual tours. Check it out! And, I mentioned it earlier, but I think I'll be joining Matt in Chicago in January. I had thought about not going up there (it's really cold, and will be harder to figure out the school systems for substituting or getting a job), but I really don't want to be away from Matt for longer than I have to be. And, he really wants me to come up there. So, I guess I'll brave the cold & head up to Chicago after Christmas! Well, this post has been pretty long, so I guess I'll end here. Our trip was great fun and I'm glad things are finally coming together for the Fall! Love you all!
We had quite an eventful 4th of July, so prepare for a marathon post! For this year’s 4th of July celebration, Matt was up to his usual scheming. He decided to plan a trip for the long weekend that, of course, included a surprise destination! In addition, it also included surprise travelling companions, and a surprise day off work. He was all about the surprises for this trip! So, on Tuesday night (July 1st), he told me that I needed to pack for our trip because we had plans Wednesday evening, and would be leaving on Thursday. I later found out that we were actually leaving on Wednesday. Matt called me Wednesday at work and told me to call him when I got off work and he would tell me where to meet him. So, after I ran to Wal-Mart to finish buying his birthday present, I called and he said to meet him at Stephen and Kayla’s house. They were going with us on our trip! We loaded up my car, and headed north on I-65. We stopped for dinner in Birmingham and continued on our way. We took this picture at our dinner stop...we all look happy and excited to be travelling:
I still had no idea where we were going, and by this time it was about 8:00 pm. I assumed we would reach our destination by midnight, or 1 or 2 at the latest. Boy was I wrong. Pictures at our 3 am gas stop...the boys are not looking quite as excited!
After 13 hours in the car and driving through Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Indiana, we arrived in Chicago at 7:30 am!! Matt drove the ENTIRE way, without a wink of sleep all night! I couldn’t believe that we actually drove all night long, and I couldn’t believe we were in Chicago! I had a brief suspicion early in the evening that we might be headed there, but quickly dismissed it since Matt will be moving there in a month. However, there we were and we had the whole weekend ahead of us. When we arrived, we drove by a few of the “sights” (the White Sox stadium, Soldier Field, University of Chicago), we stopped for breakfast then headed to the place we were staying for showers and naps! Refreshed and ready for the day, we headed out to tour the city! This was Stephen and Kayla’s first trip to Chicago, so we had the chance to show them around. After a short train ride to downtown, we stopped for lunch at Ed Debevic’s. It is one of those restaurants where the waiters are rude on purpose, and Matt had so much fun being sarcastic right back. Maybe he should get a part time job there when he moves to Chicago! They also have hats to color and wear while you're eating.
Matt's eyes look a little scary in this picture!
Chicago has their big fireworks show on July 3rd, instead of the 4th. I’m not sure why. They actually had fireworks on the 4th and 5th too, but the big celebration was on the 3rd. So, after stuffing our self at Ed Debevic’s, we headed to the Magnificent Mile to do some shopping before the celebration that evening. If we had money to shop, I definitely could have spent quite a bit on Michigan Avenue! Next we headed to the "Taste of Chicago," which is in a park right beside Lake Michigan. Restaurants from all over Chicago come to the park and you buy tickets to sample the food. It was a lot of fun, although there were SO MANY people! We walked around and ate some snack, then found a place by Buckingham Fountain to wait for the fireworks.
We're still looking a little sleepy in this picture! Although the fireworks started late, we did have some excitement to watch while we waited. First, we saw a kid get arrested for flashing gang signs. Apparently that's illegal in Chicago, and the cop was REALLY UNHAPPY about it! He grabbed the kid by the shirt, slapped handcuffs on him, and dragged him away. Kayla tried to get a picture, but Stephen wouldn't let her! Next, we saw a guy get arrested for climbing on top of the police truck. Don't know what went through his mind that said it would be a good idea to climb on a police vehicle, but the little voice in his head was clearly wrong. The police officer came out of the truck, jerked the kid off it, and threw him inside. He proceeded to bang on the side of the truck for the rest of the night. Quite the exciting time! Oh, and did I mention there were 1.2 million of our closest friends watching the fireworks with us? 1.2 million! I've never seen that many people in my life! Well, this takes you through our first day in Chicago, and now I have to go. It's almost lunch time! Maybe I'll write more this afternoon.
So, apparently I subconsciously decided to take a blogging hiatus. I just realized I haven't updated in almost 2 weeks! We have actually had a little excitement in the last 2 weeks...a surprise birthday party & a trip to Chicago! So, tomorrow when I'm bored at work I'll try to write a long update to get everyone caught up! We'll see how it goes.