Wednesday, June 22, 2005

The exterior walls of the main floor are all up, and a lot of the interior has been completed. I'm starting to finally get excited that our long-awaited dream of owning a new house is coming true -- as you can see, things are actually starting to look like a house! Posted by Hello

This view is taken from about where the guest bathroom door will be, looking into the great room and dining area. As you can see, there will be LOTS of windows. And luckily, we have a nice view out the back. Posted by Hello

Saturday, June 18, 2005

We are making progress on the house! The framers started this week and they are moving fast! The basement is already walled up, the first floor is in, and they've started a little on the garage -- which you can see from this picture of the front of the house.  Posted by Hello

Here is the southeast corner of the house -- in the back behind where the extra bedrooms will someday go. The other side, where the theatre will go, is not very interesting because there are no windows. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Well time to show the result of Justin's "mistake".  Posted by Hello
We had both hoped to be able to put the incident behind us and enjoy the rest of our trip, but fortune just would not smile on us. I found out that there is a Medieval Times restaurant in the Chicago area, however all the shows were sold out for the time that we were there. One of our primary plans for this trip was to visit Fermi Lab. However, we discovered when we got there that their website does not accurately describe how tours are handled and we missed our only chance for the month of June. Furthermore, we were outrunning bad weather on the way out, and left early to get ahead of more thunderstorms on the way back. All in all, we didn't really accomplish much. On the bright side, we did spend a day in downtown Chicago (more pictures below) and saw the Art Institute and the Adler planetarium. We played a couple of nice rounds of disc golf, did some fun geocaches, and ate at some nice restaurants. (Of course, those stories have their own details of mosquitos and free meals -- ask me about it in person someday.) The best part, of course, was that we were together away from home and having fun. I'd do it again if given the choice. ;)

This is a shot looking up the at the top of the Sears tower from the sidewalk right next to it. We didn't feel like paying the $12 to go up, especially since we've both been in tall buildings before. This picture doesn't quite capture the "looming" feeling you get -- but you can see that there are lots of other buildings around in the reflection. Kinda cool. Posted by Hello

Here is a nice picture of the Chicago skyline taken as we are walking to the Adler Planetarium. Even got some "artistic" birds in the shot. At least I can say it was a beautiful day -- lots of sunshine, not overly hot with a nice breeze. Posted by Hello

Sunday, June 05, 2005


What is it about geocaching in an unfamiliar city that brings me such doom? After securing a new job, Justin and I wanted to get away for a bit, since I won't have any vacation for awhile. So we decided to try another disc-golf/geocaching trip, this time all the way to Chicago. We stopped in Des Moines first, a place we have frolfed before, and enjoyed ourselves quite well. We then travelled to Joliet, on the outskirts of greater Chicago, for day two. After our second cache, driving on a small, one-way street, Justin inadvertently tried to turn left from the middle lane. As luck would have it, there was a car right there in the blindspot, so my misfortunate Toyota was marred yet again. Strangely enough, even though it was completely our fault, the other party left the scene of the accident. On the good side, the car is still driveable and should be easy to fix after replacing the driver-side door. I will post pictures as soon as we get back in town. And yes, we are bravely staying this time, instead of running directly home. Of course, on our last trip we were bereft of all identification and methods of payment, so we pretty much had to come home. Anyway, we are now booked at a place in Aurora, which is a much nicer part of town. We are planning to visit the Fermi lab soon, and probably do a little sight-seeing downtown. But for that, I will insist we take the train into the depths of the city and leave my poor crippled car at the hotel.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

A new job!

Yes, I have rejoined the employed populace by accepting a position at U.S. Central, a credit union for credit unions. Don't ask me to explain, as I'm new to the financial world, but hopefully I'll learn quickly. I start June 13th, and Justin and I plan to take a short trip before then, so I can release all the stress of the job-finding process. I am very grateful for this opportunity, as I've heard many good things about this company, and evidently my reputation is preceeding me. I have to thank my sister for putting me in touch with the recruiter who found the position, and I also want to give a BIG thank-you to my coworker Josh Gammon, who evidently respects my skills as much as I respect his. My new manager happened to work with Josh in the past, and so she called him out of the blue to get the "low-down" on me. Not only did that go over well, but another business analyst placed at U.S. Central by the same recruiter is someone that I worked with at Sprint in the past. All the pieces have come together -- now I just need to do my part!