Tag Archives: Chicago

30 Days of 30: Last Hurrah in Chicago

Even though my 30 days of 30 were supposed to end on my birthday (Feb 2), my college friends had planned a party/reunion in Chicago for the following weekend.   My friend Lindsay flew in from Virginia and my sister-in-law Jo and our friend Ron drove up with me to celebrate.

Friday night–

Jo, Ron, Kyle, Kenny, Kenny’s girlfriend Sascha and I went to the Cobra Lounge to see some bands play.  Kenny knew the bassist/guitar player of one of the bands and the lead singer of the other band, so that was pretty cool.  It was a decidedly “heavy/alternative” venue, but the music was more punk, so I’m not sure how the regulars felt about the bands, but we had a good time.  

We also played Rock Band at Kenny/Kyle’s house where I got my very first “perfect” in singing.   (Granted, it was on easy,  but a perfect’s a perfect!)  “Celebrity Skin” by Hole is now my official go-to Rock Band song. 

Saturday–

Due to a late evening and the fact that the boys’ apartment is like a cave, we slept REALLY late that day.  We finally got up and went to “lunch” at Giordano’s around 3.  It was good.  Not great, but decent.   Then, since Jo hadn’t seen many of the tourist-y parts of Chicago, we walked around for a bit:

Me, Jo, Ron in front of the skating rink at Millenium Park

Me, Jo, Ron in front of the skating rink at Millenium Park

The Bean

The Bean

Kyle and I in front of the Art Institute

Kyle and I in front of the Art Institute

Saturday Night– PART-ay!!
The party/reunion was held at Moe’s Cantina in Wrigleyville.   Ron T. organized everything and he did a great job.  He was always the social director in college, too and he didn’t disappoint.   Moe’s was a nice, big, open bar.  They served tapas and gave us a great drink package w/o having to guarantee a minimum number of people.   I highly reccomend it.
 More importantly, though, it was great to hang out with so many old friends– some I hadn’t seen in years!
The PRSSA crew: (back) Nikki, Lindsay, Tommy, Me, Buddy.  Front:  Ron T and Janell

The PRSSA crew: (back) Nikki, Lindsay, Tommy, Me, Buddy. Front: Ron T and Janell

Same crew, different camera

Same crew, different camera

My 'home' crew (with the exception of Sascha):  Sascha, Kenny, Ron, Me, Kyle

My 'home' crew: Sascha, Kenny, Ron, Me, Kyle

Nikki, Me, Buddy:  Self-portrait time!

Nikki, Me, Buddy: Self-portrait time!

Jo and I (note the yummy-looking skewer)

Jo and I (note the yummy-looking skewer)

Jo and I "sampling" said skewer

Jo and I "sampling" said skewer

It was a super fun weekend and there are plenty more stories/pictures to share, but I’ll leave it at that.   It was a perfect way to turn 30.
** This now concludes Carichblogs’ coverage of the 30 days of 30.  Really.  This time I mean it**
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2008: A Year in Review, Part 2

Welcome to the 2nd half of my year. I just realized that I probably should’ve done these in reverse chronological order, but whatever.

July–I took my blog public, making it a whole lot easier to remember what I did for the rest of the year.  I also started biking to work and we had Kristi’s Bachelorette Party Boat Trip:

 

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August– I took two vacations this month, plus a Tour de Philo.  First up was my staycation and then a second trip to Nawlins for Kristi’s wedding:

 

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September— I started running, became obsessed with Mad Men and reconnected with an old friend via Facebook.  We also had Bunco at Erin’s in conjunction with Philo Fest, but-unfortunately- I have no corresponding photos :-(

 

I do, however, have a photo of this thing that I found on my fence (I know you all needed to see it again)

 

squirrell

 

October– was downright insane.   There was a crazy gas station incidentmy cat died, and I was involved in train accident on the way home from seeing Cross Canadian Ragweed in Carbondale.  To top off the craziness, this was the first year in a long time that I *didn’t* dress up for Halloween.  Odd.

 

And then there was the trip to Chicago to see the New Kids on the Block:

 

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November– is always a busy month.  This year, I went to San Antonio for work. And had the usual Thanksgiving with the family.  Oh, and there was that whole historic election thing.


I also made a trip to Chicago for Nikki’s Big Ten Bar Crawl:

bigten

 

And attended my only (gasp!) U of I tailgate of the season

tgate08

December–

 

Family and friends of Ryann Smith held a benefit in Tuscola and raised a bunch of money. I realize that I haven’t blogged about Ryann at all.  She was born a couple days after Christmas with a rare birth defect called CDH.  She is a fighter.  Please keep her and the family in your thoughts and prayers. If you want to know more, visit her caring bridge page:  http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/ryannsmith.

 

I also had Christmases with my Grannie Rich,  my brother, and the rest of my extended family.

 

(And, because I know you can’t get enough of me and firearms, here’s the infamous gun shot one more time…)

 

doublefistin

I spent my Christmas break lounging, watching movies (Marley and Me and Seven Pounds), reading (still making it through the Twilight saga… I’ll reserve judgment until I’m finished with all the books), and spending time with friends and family.

 

I rang in the New Year in Chicago, but failed to take a single photo.  Maybe I should resolve to be a better chronicler this year :)

 

Reflections on 2008

All in all, the year turned out pretty good.  In some ways, this is one of the hardest years I’ve ever had, but I’ve learned so much.   I’ve learned how to ask for help from those closest to me.  I’ve learned to say “no” on occasion and I’ve learned to enjoy myself in less-than-ideal circumstances. I’ve made some new friends, reconnected with others, and have spent more time with some of my family members than ever before.

 

This blog has really been a great outlet for me and I appreciate each and every reader, hit, and comment you all have given me.

 

Here’s to happiness and prosperity in 2009!