Monday, July 28, 2008

There are some that only employ words for the purpose of disguising their thoughts.

Saturday, July 26, 2008


(as always names have been changed to protect their identity. ah heck I do it just for fun!)
**please ignore the crazy font changes. Blogger wasn't cooperating with me this morning.

Tina O.(formerly known as Toni O. also knows as, oh never mind) and I headed to Davenport last Saturday to see Ani! I know, twice in 12 months, I'm on a roll! We started with our customary Hu Hot lunch (which was fabulous!) and then headed to Coralville to do a little shopping (we are so predictable!).
I landed three pair of shoes, all on sale! Tina founds some great new jeans and flip flops. It was a pretty nice day for mid July. A little hot and sticky but not too bad.

We got to the Capitol Theatre about 5:30pm and there were maybe 20 people waiting in line. It was a general admission show so we weren't sure what to expect. I tried to stay calm as it dawned on me what great seats we were going to get. Thankfully where we waited outside the theater was shaded and there was an occasional breeze. Tina walked down to get something to eat while I sat and held our prime place in line.

When we walked up there was a gal playing the guitar and singing (you can see her on the right side of this picture). From the back she had her Ani-look down pretty good, even the way she moved. It was nice to have a little entertainment while we waited. You can check out her my space page here: Nikki Lunden.

Ani's bus was parked on the street right in front of us. At one point Allison Miller was crouched down, getting a suitcase out from below the bus, right in front of us!
Of course you always have at least one loud mouth in the crowd (who usually sits very near me, right Tom?) and Saturday was no exception. We dubbed her Ronchita. She was a big ole gal with a shaved head and lots of tattoos (nothing wrong with all of that) but her mouth proceeded her where ever she went. She was loud and obnoxious. She had that look-at-me kind of personality, over the top to say the least.

Finally after just two hours of waiting the doors opened and we were able to go in. We sat on the aisle, forth row from the stage. I was excited, the couple that sat down next to me was excited, we had great seats! Mel & Tonya joined us within the hour and we waited for Natalia Zukerman to start the show. She was fabulous! You can check out one of the songs she did that night here: Natalia Zukerman.

As fate would have it Ronchita sat exactly two rows in front of us. Running her mouth through all of Natalia's songs. Up & down, grinding on all of her "friends", yelling across the theater how much she loved her bitches. All we were hoping for is that she would sit her big ass down when Ani came on and enjoy the show.

When Ani came on stage people started to move down front, they filled up the front to the left us then started filling the center aisle. Ronchita of course had to dance and sway with her beer sloshing around the whole time, so poor Tina had a terrible view. We ended up standing about 2/3 of the way through.

Ani was great, her band was great. She did Unrequited which is one of my favorites and Every State Line.

It was pouring rain when we left the theater, thankfully we had prime parking directly across the street. The torrential rain slowed us down going home and the lightning show was amazing! But we made it back, safe and sound. Until next time Ani.......

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Who am I?

Haven't I done a "who am I" post already? Well today I seriously wasn't sure. How many trips to the Courthouse and the DOT does it take the average person to get their passport application completed? Now multiple that times 3 for me! In a period of 4 hours I was at the Blackhawk country recorders office three times and the DOT station at the mall twice. Throw in a trip back and forth to Reinbeck too!

About 14 years ago when I was 21 (and knew nothing) I had the desire to some how retain my maiden name. I didn't want a hyphenated last night I just wanted to keep it there in the middle. I wasn't ready to let go of it, I don't even remember why now. When I got my driver license updated in 1994 the DOT mistakenly hyphenated my last name. I tried to argue it at the time but they insisted, based on what ever document they were looking at, that was the way it had to be. My social security card however had my given middle name and my maiden name hyphenated the way I originally wanted.

Now fast forward 14 years and I'm trying to get a passport. I asked upfront if that was going to create an issue and was assured that it would be fine. Wrong. Yesterday I got the denial notice from the US Department of State as I had not signed with what they thought was my legal name (based on my drivers license). This morning I calmly go into the Recorders office and explain my predicament. My now friend Trudy was very sympathetic and helpful. Yes I was going to have to get my drivers license corrected. Off to the DOT I went.

After much to do they determined that what I was requesting was a legal name change. NO, I explained this is my legal name, you just have it wrong. Off I go to Reinbeck to get my marriage license. Once I get there I realize I can't find it. Back to the recorders office (2nd visit). Trudy was happy to see me back and more than happy to look up my marriage license, for $15.00. I waited patiently for about 4 minutes before she poked her head out of the back room and said "you'd better come look at this before I make a copy". I thought I was going to throw up, how bad could it be? Was Tom married to someone else 14 years ago on May 21st? Come to find out that this legal document had no mention of my maiden name at all, which was good news and back I went to the DOT. By this time I had seriously calmed down. In talking to Tom I jokingly told him "well honey there was no marriage license. Our marriage is a sham and has been for 14 years. The way I see it I have two bastard children and you owe me some child support." He was so calm, I really thought he knew I was kidding and was just playing along. Later I found out that he didn't immediately realize I was joking but remained calm because he didn't want to upset me any more!! What a guy!

Where was I? Oh yeah back to the DOT. I go in and explain to a new bouncer (the person that sits at the door and decides if you have a valid reason to enter) that I had all of my documentation this time and I needed my name corrected on my license. He looked it over and him-hawed around and started to delve into a conversation about how and why it happen. I interrupt him and said "you know I don't really care how it happen all I want is for you to fix it (and no one will get hurt. no i left that part out)". And with that I was assigned a number and granted access to the exclusive DOT inner sanctum (along with all the rest of the crazies that I would most certainly deny driving privileges to). I waited just a few moments, which must be a DOT record, and walked up to the counter. The gal did not speak to me, she took my info, I told her what I needed and she started typing. And typing. For like 5 minutes, I swear she was checking her myspace page or something. Finally she says to me "your name has been like this since 1998." as though it's now my name by common law. No, I tell her it's been like that since 1994 and it's wrong. Now change it. She starts typing again. Then she picks up my documents and walks away and is gone for seriously like 8 minutes... she comes back and says "I had to see if this was ok". Oh holy hell I'm about to lose my mind here. But I stay calm and I'm actually having to stifle a giggle because now all I can think of is Kevin James Stand up (it's about a quarter of the way into that clip) where he's talking about being online at the airline, LOL!!!! Finally I make it through the DOT gauntlet and am in the home stretch. My final trip to the Recorders office downtown (3rd visit).

Trudy is on lunch when I get there, I'll wait I say. which seems fine with them as no one wants to touch my crazy situation. As I'm waiting at the counter, filling out a new application I hear someone say "Rachael!". I turn around and it's a gal I work with and all I could think of was that my boss had sent her to get me! (she was actually there getting her own passport, good luck Diane!). Trudy was a gem and got all of my stuff together and mailed it off! With any luck in about three week my pretty little blue book will be mailed to me and I'll be ready to go (but I'm not holding my breath!). So it's good to know who I really am.

Ever the Optimist

In the car the other day Waverly was playing some electronic word game and the question was "you use an umbrella for this".
Waverly: but mommy the word sunshine doesn't fit in the blanks.
Rach: Rain honey. Most people use an umbrella when it's raining.
Ever the optimist my daughter is. Sun always shines on her shoulders!


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

A couple more.....

Just a couple more from Sunday, I know Denise is anxious to see them.

It was a year ago yesterday that I took pictures of M&A for the first time. I hope Denise knows how grateful I am to her for pushing me and encouraging me to do it. I know it's cliché to say but if it weren't for her I wouldn't be doing this. Thanks.


Sunday, July 13, 2008

I love this family...


Denise had the perfect place for her family photos. We could not get over the beauty contained in this garden! Tom & I talked about it the whole way home.... that and how adorable those little boys are!

Saturday in the country

We piled in the car and drove out to Chris & Brian's for a cook out Saturday night. Sarah got to go with us this time. She was such a good dog, playing with Kia and the farm cats. She really enjoyed getting to wander around unsupervised. The kids, as always, had a great time running wild much like Sarah. The food was good, the drinks were cold and the company was amusing (to say the least).


Kia took a swim....

Chuckwagon Races


This was our first time at the Chuckwagon races. We went with a great group from our church and had a really fun time. They were pretty exciting, those horses were just beautiful! As an added bonus we got to eat fair food on our way out!

Pico and Guac



I mixed up some Pico de Gallo and Guacamole, thanks to the pioneer woman, this week. You can get her recipe here. I over did it on the cilantro and my avacodos weren't quite right but next time it should be perfect!!!


July 4, 2008
You would have thought Dan had never had mini donuts. We went down to the park about 11am on the 4th to get some lunch and see what was going on. At this point the mini donut line was non existent and they got to watch as their donuts were cooked. Dan was "fascinated" with the process and proceeded to explain it to us as he shoved them in him mouth!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Waverly Seven Years

This song came out on Nora Jone's cd in 2002, when Waverly was two years old. Finally today I've gotten around to creating a little video of Waverly at age seven.


Just doing a little catch up this morning... I had to much fun with Cody a couple weeks ago, he is a very easy going little guy!









Friday, July 4, 2008

Birthday Bus Party!!!

All names have been changed to protect their identity (and I found a bar napkin with aliases written on it in my purse this morning)

This morning I stumbled down the steps, blurry eyed, still humming NKOTB (thank you Betty E.) in search of something to ease my pounding head. I opened the curtains to see the annual 5k racers jogging past my house and was reminded of Larry Miller and the infamous 5 stages of drinking..... (if you don't know them you've got to check them out, then the rest of this will be funnier)

Level One
Here is our birthday girl Betty E. early in the evening, eyes open, sober-ish smile.

Our very stylish ride for the evening! We were truly "exceptional"!

Toni O & me. That's my I've-had-a-little-too-much-to- drink smile, lol!!
Level Two
"Hey! I'm out with my friends! What am I working for anyway? These are the good times!"
Martha I. Josie B. and Amy M. No, I said show me your button Josie!!

Level Three
At level three you get drinking fantasies. Toni O was filling Chaz in on our idea for a very lucrative venture into Internet por.... oh never mind.... You can see that Toni's arm is slightly wet. At one point Martha I. asked for water coyote ugly style and Jefferson gave her just that!

You can not put a bunch of drunk girls on a bus and not expect someone to get mooned!

Level Four
And now you're thinking, "Our bartender is the best looking man I've ever seen." Thank goodness Jefferson got there when he did! He was a lot of fun and kept the Malibu & pineapple coming. He really worked for those tips!
Betty E. and Me. Again with the cheesy smile.

Toni O. and Amanda C. They couldn't resist sticking their heads through those holes!!

Martha I. made snacks!
Ever helpful Martha I.

Level Five
Betty E. towards the end of the night, eyes closed, drunk smile. Definitely level five. I think I finished that drink for her!

What a fabulous night with great friends!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Unphotographable - The courthouse

This is a photo I did not take. As I'm leaving the BlackHawk County Recorders office I press the down arrow on the elevator and the door promptly opens. An old man with a seemingly permanent scowl on his face says loudly "What the HELL! This is the same floor!". I politely ask if he is going down. He turns his scowl-y face towards me yet doesn't answer me. Against my better judgment I get in the elevator with him and proceed to the first floor. He hobbles out of the elevator and out the door, grumbling the whole way.

As I'm driving out of the parking lot I see him getting into his vehicle and I notice his personalized license plates. They say GRIMM.