Monday, May 28, 2007


Jay planned an awesome trip to Chi-town a.k.a. Chicago for this weekend. We had a blast and quite a few laughs along the way as well. We stayed in the beautiful Embassy Suites in Lombard, Chicago, Illinois. Little did we know that our hotel was in one of the more expensive areas of Chicago. We were attempting to find a place to buy food for Sunday since neither Jay or I feel comfortable buying things on the Sabbath.

So on our trip out from the city to our hotel in suburbia I was quickly scanning the skyline for any signs of fast food or Walmart or anything. We had just passed an exit ramp when I shouted out KFC!!! which of course would be perfect for our Sunday dinner the next day. Frustrated that we had missed the exit, we slowly (due to traffic) made it to the next exit. We dug around and Jay found a coupon for KFC and I was thinking what it was that I would like to order for my meal. We got back on the highway headed back towards the KFC. Traffic was pretty bunched up but we made it back to the exit. We were about to pull into the KFC parking lot, when tragedy struck. The KFC was closed! Of course, at this time of the afternoon I was very slap happy and started howling and laughing. Jay did not find it as funny as I did apparently, but he did grin a little bit.

When we did finally arrive at our hotel, Jay ran in, got the room key and asked for directions to the nearest fast food restaurant. Saying "not a problem" to their newest guest, they handed him a small booklet full of restaurants in the area. Obviously they failed to hear the "fast food" part because the booklet was full of restaurants like Red Lobster, TGI Fridays, J. Alexander's, the Capital Grille etc. He made it a little clearer and they finally gave him directions to the nearest grocery store. Of course once we found the grocery store, a McDonalds was right nearby as well as a Boston Market. Sigh, at long last we got our Sunday dinner.

Saturday we spent mostly trying to figure out the Chicago Transity Authority routes. We rode several trains, a couple buses. After a small detour through a large park we found our way back to the bus route, and decided to ride the bus to the Museum of Science and Industry where I found several intriguing things to look at and experience. Once we made it back downtown, we hit the Rainforest Cafe. (Incidentally it was right beside the Hard Rock Cafe that I believe, correct me if I am wrong, Lyn, we ate at my senior year on our senior trip.) Jay and I went to Rainforest Cafe in Niagara Falls a year ago November so it was nice to visit again. Jay dragged me up 9 escalators at Marshall Field and Co. to show we the ridiculously priced furniture. It was definitely a nice store, but I wasn't that impressed that their furniture was on the 9th floor. Then much to our chagrin, it started raining and so we decided to ride the train back out to where we had parked our car. Thankfully, no bandits had broken, stolen or otherwise damaged our vehicle or the contents thereof. Thus ensued the previous story about the KFC.

Sunday morning we made our way to Willow Creek Community Church (approx. 10,000 members strong) where we attended their morning service. Very much different than what I am used to, but an eye opening experience. I did not appreciate their lack of reverence in the actual service, but their tribute to the soldiers of the United States was well done. Jay was very excited to visit this church and he took several pictures.

The rest of Sunday was spent doing just that, resting (and quilting). By Monday morning I was ready to roll. Embassy Suites fed us our breakfast at no extra cost. And it wasn't one of those cold cereal and a bagel type breakfasts. You walk up to the counter, pick up a bowl, decided what toppings you want, hand it to the cook and they make your omelette right in front of you. Then you turn around and help yourself to muffins, sausage, bacon, hash browns, more eggs, every kind of juice you can think of and of course for all the other folks in the world cold cereal and bagels. I was impressed with the free breakfast.

We headed back downtown (minus the train) where we managed to find FREE parking downtown. Amazing find as most parking garages were $17 or more to park for a couple hours. We walked around the amazing Millenium Park which I don't believe was there on my senior trip. Took several pictures of The Cloud Gate a.k.a. the Bean. An amazing feat of contemporary art if you've never seen it. We then made our way to the popular Navy Pier. Where I experienced a whirl wind tour of Chicago via the Seadog Speedboat. Interesting way to view the Chicago skyline as well as get some speed on the water with the 2000 horsepower engines.

I got a glimpse at Buckingham Fountain from the car. You will also see a picture of thousands of boots. This is a moving memorial to the US soldiers and civilians who have died in Iraq. The boots represent the soldiers who used to wear them. I noticed several people crying and wiping away tears. Then we drove down Michigan (the magnificent mile) and I relived memories of my senior trip 7 years ago where we walked down the same sidewalks and window shopped.

On the way home, Jay surprised me with a dinner at Olive Garden, or at least it started out that way. He had called my cousin and her husband and asked them to meet us at Olive Garden. However, the entire time I believed we were eating at Don Pablos so when we went wizzing by it I knew something was up. We walked into Olive Garden and there sat my cousin and her husband. What a nice surprise! I had even taken a picture of the Olive Garden sign thinking we were going to eat here. Once we met up with them, we ventured back to Don Pablos where I took a pic of the restaurant again, but this time we actually ate there.

Sigh! An awesome, tiring but enjoyable weekend spent with my honey. What could be better? Hmmm......Maybe I shouldn't have posted that question. I know my dad will probably have something to say.

Waiting for my first train ride.

Jay playing around with the musical lights. If you cast your shadow through the light it will play a note. He had fun running up and down the "keyboard." (Museum of Science and Industry)

One cool place to eat!

Sanctuary at Willow Creek Community Church.

The beautiful garden inside the Embassy Suites Hotel.

I took this picture from the glass elevator. It was a beautiful place to stay.
The outdoor theatre at Millenium Park.

The Cloud Gate a.k.a. the Bean at Millenium Park.

The Buckingham Fountain from across the Bicentennial Park.

Skyline from the Seadog Speedboat tour. A picture can't really capture the architectural beauty.
Jay standing in one of the gardens on Navy Pier. He liked the arches of water over his head.

The thousands of pairs of boots in the moving memorial.

Since Jay and I are now making our millions, we have decided to move downtown Chicago. Yikes!

My cousin Janella and her husband Jonathan at Don Pablos. I was tired after the long weekend. Jay decided to snap yet another sleeping picture.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Quilt Basting

Well, today I basted together the small lap quilt that I have been working on. This is the first time that I have used a basting gun. I bought a cheap one at Walmart. I was trying to remember why I had never used one before. I think I remember Senora telling us that they could ruin our quilts if we weren't careful. I thought I would try it out on this smaller quilt. I put the staples in the seams instead of in the middle of a block hoping any holes from the staples would work themselves out in the middle of the seam. We will see I guess.
Then I cut out a few blocks for another quilt that I have in mind. I had some yellow material and some blue left over from other quilts so I cut some triangles out for my next quilt. Right now I am just trying to get some quilt tops done and put together so I can take them with me on vacation. We are going to Myrtle Beach again this year and since I am not necessarily flush with cash this summer, I am taking projects with me that won't cost me any money. Should be fun quilting while watching the waves come in.
I surprised Jay with some ribs for supper along with corn, mashed potatoes, macaroni salad and bread, butter and jam. I think he liked it. I could tell by the Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ all over his mouth. Wink!
On a more serious note, today I was returning from Subway (my boss was hungry) and I was blocked from entering the jail by one of the sergeants. Apparently a lady from a few blocks away, had been stabbed in the neck and had come to our lobby looking for help. It wasn't a terribly deep cut but it was bleeding pretty good and there was a big splotch of blood on our lobby floor. Of course when we called 911 they had to send a squad and a fire truck. Not sure why they do that. I think they must get bored or something.
The more I thought about it, the more I felt sorry for the lady. Working in the jail, I think I have lost a lot of sympathy for people because they are the ones that for the most part have put themselves in bad situations. But I felt bad that the lady had to come several blocks to us, most likely because she didn't feel should could trust anyone else. So I prayed that God would help me be more sympathetic to people, whether they caused their own problems or not.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Chains of Blue


Well thank God for protection. Jay had his Shred-It truck on Friday and on Saturday the same truck was a great ball of fire. The gas tank exploded. Thank goodness no one was injured. A co-worker of Jay's thought he saw sparks, so he got out and the truck went up in flames. Here are a couple pictures.

Oh and yes I have started another quilt. All the blocks are done, now I just have to sew them together and the quilt top will be done. It is much simpler than the last one and smaller.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Happy with myself!

My cousin had a similar face recognition on her bebo site so I thought I would try it out. I think I will stick with my own face! I still can't believe it says Jennifer Love Hewitt. Something must be wrong with that software. Oh well. Tonight I am thankful that God made me like I am and gave me a wonderful hubby!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Woohoo! It's Done!

Yes! I finally finished it. This was my first quilt without using a pattern out of a book. The stars were from a quilt that I had done before but the borders and the flag were something I just had in my head. I think it looks pretty neat. The special touch I was talking about were a couple words that I put around the flag. The cool thing about making a quilt is you can do it however you want.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Pics from Mother's Day

The road my parents live on dead ends right in front of their house. My brother set up this "target" for rifle practice right at the dead end. He said to make sure I took a picture of the score since his girlfriend beat him.

The Lavy used car lot. We (Brent, Dani, Jay and I) drove up from Cincinnati and surprised mom by walking into to church and sitting on her pew. She started crying. I would say she was happy. In case anyone is interested in any cars, we had 5 vehicles and a horse trailer in our driveway.

The Lavy philosophy

Dani proudly shows off the grean beans.

Realizing that the meatloaf my mom had prepared for Dad, Ally and herself wouldn't be enough for the 7 of us, Dani brought along a bunch of chicken. It was yummy!

Dad was the first to sit down for lunch and of course, Dudley was right there ready to eat too.

Dani got Mom this really neat barrel and water pump thingie to sit in her flower garden. It does look pretty neat.

These flowers were my contribution to her patio for Mother's Day.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Almost done.....

I am getting so close! I am working on the binding of my quilt today. I have a couple special touches I want to add to the quilt before it is completely done but it is very close. I am pretty excited. I started this in February.
Today Jay and I went to Don Pablos again. I love the chips and salsa. I took pics of the flowers around the restaurant and some of the boats along the Ohio River. It was a beautiful day.
I bought the dinner for us and Jay was so excited that I had to sign "Baker" on the receipt.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Butternut Barber and Beauty

Well, I have undertaken a new hobby.....sort of. I got tired of Jay's hair always getting long, so I asked him to buy some hair clippers and I would start cutting his hair. Saves him $20 every few weeks. Now I figure, I used to cut horse's hair all the time for horse shows. The brand of hair clippers he got was the exact same brand we used for the horses. I learned really quick that he doesn't like being compared to one of our horses. Oops! But it was fun and not too hard. I decided not to cut too much this time so that if I did mess up, then I could just cover it up by cutting all of his hair a little shorter. The first pic is how the back of his hair looked at the beginning. The last pic is how he looks now!

Thursday, May 03, 2007


If you know me, you know that I LOVE pictures. Our wedding photographer, thankfully, loves taking creative poses and I am so happy with my pictures. So happy in fact that I bought a couple of big ones. I got an 11x14 when I bought the album and various other smaller loose pictures. But in the end, I decided I would really love to have a couple larger photos.

Of course, Jay wanted a bigger one of us kissing. Surprise, surprise. These are the ones we picked out. To give you a hint, the small one at the bottom is an 8x10. So yeah, they are HUGE! Wink!