Working 5 days in a row is hard

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Well I think we have recovered from our long road trip.  But coming back from being off for a week is really hard, especially when you have to work all 5 days. It is funny because during January and February I work 6 days a week and long hours and don’t think it is that hard.  I have to say I really do like that I’m busy in the winter and slower in the summer.  I’d rather be off in the summer.  I looked at my PTO calendar and I have taken almost half my days in May and June….16 days to be exact. I haven’t worked a full week of work since the last week of April.

Work must have been rough on me because 3 days this week I took a nap after work.
  I don’t usually take naps. But a combination of vacation recovery and the heat had something to contribute to it.  Also I didn’t get a run in because I’ve been too lazy.

Tuesday we had to take Swirl to the vet for a follow up to his dental surgery.  All is good with him.

Wednesday was the hottest and most humid day of the week and poor Eric had 2 soccer games.  It was 96 degrees at game time with a heat index over 100 degrees.  Eric lost 5 lbs. I’m sure mostly water weight.  He was soaked when he got home.  That was kind of gross.  

Eden Prairie Community Band has started their summer concert series.  Our first concert was at Hilde Performance Center in Plymouth.  It was so hot and the sun was shining on us for the first half of the concert.  The crowd was really small too.  I think there more people in the band than in the crowd.  I’m assuming the heat had something to do with that.

Last night we did the exciting task of grocery shopping. That was it.  We have gotten old and boring if our excitement for Friday night is grocery shopping.

I’m happy to report that I went for a run this morning. I only did 2 ¼ miles.  It was so hot and very humid.  I actually stopped at the Visitor Center drinking fountain.  I was going to do 2 ½ but I got the KC Hall and decided I couldn’t go any further. I’m actually impressed that I was able to run as far as I did considering I haven’t run in over 35 days.  I’ve been slacking.

On a finally note, Swirl greeted my Saturday morning by puking.  To quote my Facebook status:

Dear Kim, 
It is finally the weekend and to show you how much I love you, I decided to puke. But puking on the floor isn't enough so I did it from my bird house perch so it splattered everywhere? Hope you appreciate it.

A long road home from Cincy

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Well we are finally home from our vacation.  Cincinnati was not that exciting.  We finally got to Cincy at about 5pm.  First stop was the Eden Park.  It is a very beautiful park on the bluffs of the Ohio.  We got some great views of the river and of Kentucky.  After that we eventually made our way to the hotel in Newport, KY.  Newport is just across the river from Cincy.  We had a view of downtown.  The hotels on the Kentucky side were over $100 cheaper and they have this awesome trolley that runs every 15 minutes and it takes about 10-15 minutes to get to downtown Cincy.  I think it was a great deal.  We took the trolley into town and walked around the Fountain Square and had dinner.  After we got back to the hotel we took a dip in the pool but it was so cold!

Friday morning we started at the William Taft Historical Site.  It was his birthplace and childhood home.  It was really interesting.  After that we did the Ride the Ducks tour.  I was a little apprehensive about the tour but it actually was quite fun and very informative...but the duck noise makers got a bit annoying.  It was way better than the stupid boat tour we took of Pittsburgh where we didn't learn anything and spent the time yelling stupid things like "Go Steelers" or "Go Pirates" under their bridges.  Anyways the Duck tour was really fun. After that we went up to the top of Carew Tower.  The observatory deck was on the 49th floor and it has 360 degree views of the city.  And it cost us a whopping $2. What a deal! The building was built in 1929 and is the model for the Empire State Building.  We walked across the  John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge. The bridge was built in 1867 and people were so afraid to use it that they bribed the German immigrants by providing free beer and brats if they walked to the middle of the bridge.  That apparently got people to use it.  This was the model for the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City. Apparently New York uses Cincinnati as their guinea pigs. LOL! 

The game was exciting.  The Twins came from behind again to win.  We had a delay because the home plate ump was hit in the back of the head with a broken bat.  A very freak accident.  He was knocked out cold for a while but he walked off on his own. They worked with a 3 man crew after that. The Twins won 5-4.  They had fireworks after the game...they were AMAZING! They put the Target Field fireworks to shame...actually it was probably the best fireworks I've ever seen except for the Mount Rushmore 4th of July show many years ago.

We got up early this morning after being rudely awaken by 2 fire alarms at around 3am.  Seriously?  No fire but we never found out why it went off.   We rushed out of our hotel and made our way home.  We left Newport, KY at 9:05 am ET (8:05 am CT) and got home by 8:30 pm (CT).  We avoided Chicago so we ended up driving 767 miles today (it is 43 miles longer to avoid Chicago).  It is so nice to be home. It was a great road trip.

Delayed on I-70

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Well our morning didn't start out the best. Breakfast was great and our drive out of Pittsburgh went ok. We got to go through the Fort Pitt tunnel which was pretty long. We got about 45 minutes out of Pittsburgh when were stopped on the interstate. It took us over 30 minutes to go 4 miles. There was a semi fire and the road was closed. When we came up on it they must have just opened the road. So that was fun. We went through a small portion of West Virginia. That is such a pretty state. Now we are stopped on I-70 again about 70 miles outside of columbus...what a day. It is noon, hopefully we get to Cincinnati before night. Lol! Here is a picture from the back up in PA.

Pitt, Boat Cruise and PNC Park

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

This vacation has been pretty laid back.  And if you know me that is not normal.   We had an amazing breakfast this morning with stinky cheese from Switzerland and summer sausage among other wonderful things.  We didn't leave the hotel until after 10:30. First stop is the University of Pittsburgh. The main reason for going on campus, besides the obviously one that I love college campuses, is because the campus still has the old Forbes Field Wall.  I love historic baseball stuff so this was up my alley. We also saw the home plate from the last game played at Forbes Field in 1970.

After that we did the 
Duquesne Incline (the other incline in the city). The view wasn't as good and it cost more to go up there so it was a bust.  We got back to Station Square in time for the river boat tour.  It was nice to take a boat ride but the narrator was really stupid.  The only thing I really learned is that there are 406 bridges, over 100 bars and they love their sports teams. Only 19,000 at the game so ya they really love their teams (snicker).

The afternoon was hot at over 95 degrees, thankfully our seats were not in the sun. The game was great and it went really fast.  Not much hitting but some great defense and not too bad pitching.  We sat 3 rows behind the dugout so we got really close to the players. It was awesome. PNC Park is really nice.  It is in my top 5 met all my requirements: open air with NO ROOF, a seat with a great view and in the downtown area. Willingham hit a home run in the 8th inning to put the Twins in front. The couple sitting next to us was from Rapid City, SD!!  Small world.  They are also going to Cincinnati.

Flight 93, Fort Necessity and Pittsburgh

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

We had a busy day today.  We started out with a scenic drive to the Flight 93 National Memorial crash site. It was very beautiful drive but expensive...$12.60 in tolls.  The site was very somber.  They have a wall with names of all the victims.  There is also a boulder that shows where the plane crashed.  It crashed upside down.  How scary.

After that we drove down a very twisty, turny road to Fort Necessity. George Washington lost here.  The battle was in 1754 against the French and American Indians.  It was actually pretty interesting.  We got to see a historic weapons demonstrations so that is cool.  

We had another scenic drive to Pittsburgh. Down the mountains, over the rivers, up the mountains.  Very cool.  We checked into our hotel on the north shore of Pittsburgh. We have a nice view of downtown.  We are staying at
The Priory Hotel began its existence in 1888 as The St. Mary’s Priory. It is very nice.

After that we venture to Station Square, a old train station transformed into a shopping area.  We had a nice dinner and walked around the riverfront. We took the 
The Monongahela Incline, built by John Endres in 1870. It is the oldest continuously operating funicular in the USA.  The view from the top was great.  And after the sunset the view was even better!

Cuyahoga Valley National Park & Pro Football Hall of Fame

Monday, June 18, 2012

Today was a nice day and very short.  We only covered about 139 miles but we saw a lot.  First thing we did was drive to Cuyahoga Valley National Park.  We checked out the Brandywine Falls. It was nice and the rain last night helped to make the flow really fast.  After seeing many falls around the U.S., this wasn't that spectacular but still nice.  Next we stopped at the Boston Store and Peninsula Train Depot. We walked across the Everett Covered Bridge were Eric met a very freaked out snake.  The snake was sunning himself on the rock Eric just about stepped on. The snake scurried into the water and Eric maintained his balance on a different rock.  I went to the view area for the bridge and out of no where a deer jump out.  He was seriously 10 feet away from me.  He was nice enough to hang around so I could snap a picture. Next we went to the Beaver Marsh but sadly no beavers. :-(

After Cuyahoga Valley National Park we went to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton.  I'm not all that excited about is my sport...but I do root for my Minnesota Vikings and hate the Green Bay Packers.  It was interesting with lots of exhibits.

Right now we are just chilling out at our is an early night!

Evil Tolls

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Well our first day of the road trip is in the books.  We drove 743 miles and it took us 12 boring hours.  Wisconsin was boring...we got to see a motorcycle cop. Next was Illinois. I don't really want to drive through Illinois but the fact I have to pay for the privilege makes me unhappy...tolls really suck and so does Illinois. I-90 was a parking lot through Chicago.  We paid the great (snicker) State of Illinois $9.90 to use 117 miles of their roads (8 cents a mile).  Next was Indiana.  We had to pay $1.50 to get into the state and $7.50 to get out.  So another $9 for 155 miles (6 cents a mile). I wanted to stop at the RV/Motor Home Hall of Fame near Elkhart, IN but Eric said no...he is no fun...LOL!  Who goes to the RV Hall of Fame and what exactly are they inducting?  How silly. Finally we finished the day in Ohio. We drove 174 miles and paid $10 (6 cents a mile).  So far we have paid almost $29 in tolls.  What  a rip off.  Why are toll roads in states you have to drive through but  aren't very scenic?  Anyways, we got to Elyria, OH which is just outside of Cleveland.  

Twins won today in 15 innings.  Hopefully that will will carry over to Pittsburgh and I can see another win.  Ok time for bed...hopefully tomorrow will be more interesting.

T-minus 10 hours and counting

Saturday, June 16, 2012

In less then 10 hours we should be on our way for the 2012 Baseball Road Trip.  So excited!  Hopefully all goes well.

Let see, work was rough this week...4 and half days was a struggle.  Thankfully some of the days were crappy so it was ok that I was working.

Last night Danielle and I went to the Brewers//Twins game....Twins lost of course. Danielle was happy.  We got home pretty late and her boyfriend Bradley came up and got to my house at like 3am.  What a dedicated boyfriend!

We didn't really do much today.  I made them pancakes for breakfast and then we went to Costco.  You know college students...they need food.   We had some pizza for lunch and Bradley had to leave for work.  
When Eric got home I mentioned that after June 28th we will lose our unlimited data for our phones so he insisted I get a new phone so that we can keep our unlimited data.  So I got a new smartphone. So far I love it.  I also figured how to tether it to my laptop so I can have Internet anywhere my phone has reception.  Yes!  I'm so excited that I figured this out.   So tomorrow on the road, I can publish a blog from the car and Eric can do his Cafe World on FaceBook.  It is all good.

Well I need my sleep for the long drive tomorrow. Stay tuned for blogs about our trip.

Yes Eric, you did have a paper due last night

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

On Sunday we went to the Twins/Cubs game with Byron and Paula.  The Twins lost of course. Byron is seriously cursed.  He has never seen the team he was rooting for win.  Very sad.

Sunday night we had massive thunderstorm.  The rain was just pouring, the lightening was flashing and the tornado sirens were a blarin'.  Of course our satellite went out, then our internet and than the lights.  Really?

Yesterday was a rough day at work.  After work 4 hours two weeks ago, then 2 days last week, the thought of working a full week seems I'm taking a half day on Friday. :-)

All weekend I kept asking Eric, "Are you sure you don't have anything due?" (I'm starting to sound like my grandma.) He assured me that he didn't not.  Well, I accidentally went into his school's email account (it is through gmail and I was trying to get to my gmail account).  I was surprised to see that his teacher sent him an email asking where his paper was.  When I saw this email I was angry.  How could he miss a paper???  So when he came home from his soccer game at 9:15 pm, I had to be the bearer of bad news.  He flipped out and I saw a look I've never seen in Eric's eyes before...FEAR!  I calmed him down and after 2 hours of writing and typing, we finished his 4 pages paper and submitted it to his teacher.  Pretty impressive if you ask me...I'm taking some of the credit.  If I wouldn't have accidentally went into his email account, he would never know that there was a paper due because he never checks his school email.  I have fixed that too.  I now get a forwarded copy of all his school emails.  I'm starting to be like a mother but he needs to stay on top of his work!

View from the top (of Wild Thing)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Well today was a very busy day.  It started early this morning when Byron and Paula arrived...ok so it was 12:10 am but it was still this morning!

We headed to Valleyfair around 10am and after a little snafu with our season passes, we finally got into the park.  We hit most of the rollercoasters like Wild Thing, Mad Mouse, Renegade and Excalibur (just like my hotel last week. Paula and I went on the Looping Starship...the boys were wimps. We spent the rest of the afternoon in the waterpark.  We did the huge 4-person slide twice, the small tube ride, a slide and the wave pool.  Lazy river was closed for some reason. :(

We meet Greg, Celeste and Evelyn for dinner at Applebees.  I had the most nutritious Triple Chocolate Meltdown.  Let's be realistic, it was really hot all day and I wasn't hungry so I had what I really wanted. Yum!

After dinner they all hung around our house until 7:30 when we went back to Valleyfair to ride the rest of the rides we missed.  We started with Enterprise, Steel Venom, Corkscrew, High Roller and Power Tower.  We finished the night with Wild Thing.  As we went up to the 206 feet summit, we got the best view of the fireworks.  It was awesome; the view from the top was the best.

Beth's Graduation

Friday, June 8, 2012

I love 2 day work weeks.  Tuesday was my "Monday" and Wednesday was my "Friday."  But next week is going to be tough.  5 days. I don't know if I can do that. LOL!

Wednesday after work we went down to Mankato for Beth's Graduation Party.  The menu included waffles, root beer floats and cake.  It was good. Danielle even came by for some food. It was nice to see her again.  We got home around 10.

We took Thursday off.  Swirl had to go to the vet for dental work.  That was an expensive bill...ouch!  And now we have to pill him for the next 10 days.  Oh that is so much fun.  Eric wraps him in a blanket and picks him up then I try to stuff the pill in his mouth without getting my fingers bit. I'm not sure who has the harder job.

Beth's graduation was last night too. After we got home from the vet, we drove down to DJ's house to meet the rest of the family.  Eric's parents came to town for the graduation. The ceremony was outside and shocking was only an hour long since there was over 230 in her class. It is amazing.  I got some good pictures.

Vegas Baby!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Since my last post, I’ve been busy and didn’t have internet access.  :(
We came home from Atlanta on Wednesday. I worked Thursday for 4 hours and then I went to the airport for the second trip.  The flight to Vegas was uneventful. I sat in first class and watch We Bought a Zoo movie.  It was cute.  I got my bag, rented the car and headed to Target for birthday gifts.  I stopped at In and Out Burger and then went to the Excalibur.  Not too exciting of a night.  I was by myself the first night so I was lonely. I was in bed by 8:30 and asleep by 9.
I woke up early Friday morning and went to the airport to pick up Samantha. Her flight got in at 7am.  I drove her down the Strip so she could see all the cool hotels and then I took her out to Red Rock Canyon.  We did the scenic drive and even did some hiking in the rocks. It was fun. We stopped at Target so she could pick some things and we waited at the hotel until Carrie’s flight arrived.
After picking up Carrie, we went straight to Hoover Dam. It was just as cool as it was in December but the temperature was not. It was 120 degrees down there.  HOT! We went back to the hotel and went swimming, then In and Out Burger (again) and cruised the strip.  We walked down to the Luxor and Mandalay Bay and then headed to Bellagio for the dancing waters and then made our way back to the Excalibur. It was quite a long walk. 
Saturday we started out at the Rio for the longest buffet.  After that we checked out the M&M World and Coke World. Samantha and I rode the New York, New York Rollercoaster.  We drove down to the Mirage and went for a gondola ride at the Venetian, had dinner at the Palazzo and watched the flaming volcano at the Mirage.
Sunday we packed up Samantha and drove first to the Welcome to Las Vegas sign and then to Pahrump for the birthday party for Allista, Gerald and William.  They had it at this Bounce place with indoor bouncing stuff. It was fun.  We hung out at the house after that until we had to leave to take Samantha to the airport.  After that Carrie and I just stayed around the Excalibur.  She had an early, early morning flight so we didn’t do too much.
Monday I dropped Carrie off at the airport at 5am and went back to the hotel and slept another couple hours. After I checked out, I meet a friend of mine that I used to work with who was also in Vegas.  I met her and her friend at the Caesar’s Palace.  It is so beautiful inside there!  It was nice to see her again. After lunch, I high tailed it back to the rental car place and back to the airport for my flight home.  While in security I was chatting with this nice guy from Newark, NJ and he asked me to join him in the United’s club.  Free food, internet and comfy chairs…heck ya!  I watched Joyful Noise and had a great meal and before I knew I was back in MSP.  It was so nice to be home and in my own bed again.