Thursday, January 31, 2008

Thriller on the train

Krista has a thing for the CTA and even though this is london I'm sure she will get a kick out of it, it even has video.

Quote from the article:

"THIS is the moment a group of Thrill seekers hiJack-son a London tube train.

Passengers were left open-mouthed when a group of commuters - including a suited man - got up from their seats and performed the dance featured in Michael Jackson's music video for hit Thriller."

Check it out

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Michael Jordan

This is going to be a blog topic for both of us today, but it looks like I may be first in posting this morning - We saw Michael Jordan last night from about 5 feet away, and Jim waved to him

The regular pool I go to doesn't have adult hours on Tuesday, so sometimes Jim and I go together to a local high school's evening open swim hours. Usually there is no one there except us, so we pulled up to the high school and cars were everyone, including lots of police. I figured they were having a basketball game was going on, and I was right. The normal way to the pool was closed off, a security guard walked us back to the pool (the pool is run by the Chicago Park District, not the school). Once in the pool, the life guard told us that it was such a big game because Collins HS (where we were) was playing Whitney Young HS, so MJ was watching his son play basketball who plays at Whitney Young.

I was mildly impressed, and then about 30 minutes of swimming, some people walked into the pool area and the first person my eyes went to was MJ. I start to say quite fast, "Oh my gosh, Oh my gosh, Oh my gosh..." Jim says "What?" I point, he looks and waves....

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Science of Touch

I have read several interesting articles about touch in the last 10 years. When I was a pastor, I read one about how most single people got most of their physical contact at church. I tested this theory. I made a goal of 10 hugs a week - and many weeks I couldn't get that many unless I would go to my housemates and beg for hugs. The science of touch article, click here, also talks about this problem.

Being in the first year of the marriage, I don't think of these things anymore very often....until last night. Last week, I rediscovered my rocking chair so yesterday I worked from home and spent most of the day with my laptop on my lap and in my rocking chair. So after supper, I went back to that same stance and Jim was on the couch as we watched some TV. Upon going to bed, I told Jim that I felt like we hadn't spent much time together during the night. I was trying to figure it why as we spent all evening together...and I realized that it probably was because we hadn't sat in our assigned seats on the couch. The power of touch....

Monday, January 28, 2008

Family News

I want to officially announce that my little sister is engaged! I am excited for her and Russ, who gets to (or has to) join our family!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Jim and Joslyn

Jim and Joslyn have this thing, this connection that is so adorable to watch. I believe it started over Jim's action figure collection - mega man in particular, that Joslyn calls space man. However, it obviously grown from there. When they are together, they can't get enough of each other. Today, at the Children's Museum was a hoot - lots of fun for all involved.

I wish I had grabbed the camera for the end of the evening together. Joslyn crawled up on Jim's lap and was watching Little Einstien's, Jim started making sound effects to which Joslyn would react and giggle which would then make him giggle.

I hope you all have a little person (or at least a big person) to make you giggle....

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Chicagoitis and food

I think I made a new year's resolution without knowing it, trying to be more intentional about making sure I make time to do cool things in the city. I have been doing a lot of that, thanks to my membership to Chicago History Museum and some J term groups.

Plus, last weekend I decided we should go to Bobak's last week because it is a great store on the southwest side of Chicago serving the Polish residents and Jim has never been there. They had a neighboring restaurant that I wanted for him to experience as well. So, we got there and they had closed the restaurant and moved to a hot bar within the store and tables within the store. So, we had a wonderful meal - but not what I expected. I think it scared me though....I should not put off going places in case they close.

We were supposed to go to Goshen this weekend but the event I need to be at got cancelled - I had plans to enjoy chicken and noodles over mashed potatoes for weeks! So the other day when I found out we wouldn't be going, I thought to myself I want to go to Hot Doug's. So we did today for lunch. They are only open from 10-4. I have only been there on week days before but I have heard about the lines on the weekends. And yes, we stood outside lined up on the side of the building to get in. Their website gives little clues about this place but I think it reminds me of my family a bit, which is why I like it. Doug, who took our order today and always has taken my order when I have gone there, is a professional chef, trained in France, and after working in top notch places in New York and Paris decided what he would rather do was run a standard hot dog shop in Chicago, his home town. However, it isn't so standard. While he serves the normal hot dog, the polish, the bratwurst - typical encased meats, he also makes his own sausages using for example from today's specials - ribeye steak, alligator, and chicken. Check the website for the unique stuff he makes. On Friday and Saturdays, they serve Duck Fat Fries - I had to try them if I was going to stand in line. They were good - but not as good as I have heard them glorified to be. But Hot Doug's has the best encased meat I have ever had. And if you are wondering why I am using the term encased meat - check out their T-shirts.

Tomorrow, Joslyn will be leading us to the Chicago Children's Museum. I have never been there and I am excited to go with my favorite almost 3 year old.

A week in my life

In the style of my friend, Am, I offer some ponderings on my week:

Jim and I went downtown, I even had heels on, to the Weber Grill for my birthday. As Betsy had told me, the pretzel rolls were amazing. It was nice to have a celebration with just Jim and I. Considering we celebrate my birthday last year as sort of the day we decided that we would get married.


I taught a class about service on Tuesday and served on a panel on racism. I love doing that stuff. Especially the panel on racism proved to be a great conversation.


Jim's parents had us over to celebrate my birthday - for the best chili I have ever had. Now, you could think that I was just saying that to kiss up to my mother-in-law, but I am not!!! It is amazing. They got me a great cake as well - white cake with strawberries.


Glenn, my boss, does a lot of traveling and likes to see movies in his free time during his travels. So, he suggested that we go see Juno on Thursday night, which Jim and I already saw and loved. We went again. It rocked all over again. I noticed the soundtrack more this time - Jim put it on his ipod right after we saw it the first time. My favorite line of the movie is: "You don't even try that hard (to try to impress me)" "Actually, I try really hard."


Last night, I cooked for the first time in a week, shrimp with pasta and green beans. Nothing special or shocking or good enough to report here. However, I wanted to go to a book store. I got several gift certificates for bookstores for my birthday and while most are online, I like to go and look first. Plus, I am more interested in tracking all the books I want to read on (great tracking for any book lover - check it out - thanks Nadia, for pointing it out to me). So Jim took me (he drove even, which rarely happens) to Barnes and Noble with a little notebook and a pencil and my BN gift certificate. We spent 2 hours going through all the books and writing down ones that I want to read so I could go home and enter them in my to read shelf at good reads. Jim kept telling me I was easy to please, because if I had not had a gift certificate I wouldn't have bought anything. However, because I did - I bought a great book about Chicago, I have checked it out of the library many many times - The Cheap Bastards Guide to Chicago: Things to do for free in Chicago. Plus, a copy of Time Out Chicago - a weekly magazine about what is going on in Chicago - and it happens to be what Jim got me for my birthday but won't start arriving for a month.


Monday, I start going to class again. I signed up for a History of the Black Church class at the Center for African Biblical Studies. This is going to be a serious class the text book is 450 pages long. I can't wait! I miss being a student enough to take it. The interesting thing is that the Center is a part of Trinity UCC church here in Chicago, where Barack Obama has been a member for a long time. However, many spam emails are saying the church is a cult and/or a part of the Nation of Islam. So, it should be interesting to be at the church on a regular basis during this interesting time in politics and the church's life.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Do's and Don'ts

Krista and Me saw this style of book on her b-day and I just found more online

Check it out

Monday, January 21, 2008


I love seeing these peoples crazy signs it blows my mind in so many ways

Enjoy the photo's of intolerance:

Check it out

No voice to praise

Saturday I went to an all day meeting, where my voice was shaking because of sickness, but I talked a lot. By Saturday evening, I had a very bad throat and couldn't talk at all....Sunday morning was no better.

Now, going to church normally without a voice would be hard; but to celebrate MLK day in a church where the man had an office without a voice proved to be painful. The three congregations that worship in the building all combined yesterday to celebrate the God that Martin served. It was an amazing service; and yet through all the singing I was silent. Reflection is key, i suppose.

My usually quiet partner in DOOR crime, Brian, gave a challenging sermon that I said a silent amen to and was challenged several times. It was his time to shine, and he did!

Our benediction was this:

We now dedicate ourselves to the long and bitter - but beautiful-struggle for a new world. This is our calling as children of God, and our sisters and brothers eagerly wait for our response.

Shall we say the odds are too great? Shall we tell them the struggle is too hard? Will our message be that the forces of American life militate against their arrival as full humans, and we send our deepest regrets?

Or will there be another message, of longing, of hope, of solidity together with their yearning, of commitment to their cause, whatever the cost?

The choice is ours, and though we might prefer it otherwise we must choose in their crucial moment of human history.

(A time to break silence: Declaration of Independence form the War in Vietnam)

It says that if one cannot praise God, rocks will cry out. There were some mighty rocks rocking out for me yesterday.

Comfort food

In the last week of being sick, I have only felt up to cooking comfort food...which I am sure has caused some pounds to come back on me...however, I have been thinking about comfort food and how it has that effect of comforting - and salad which I normally love and desire - doesn't have that appeal when I am sick. For example, Saturday night after being out, we came home without eating out because nothing sounded good. I made chicken broth gravy to be on top of a piece of bread, some cut up chicken, a scoop of leftover mashed potatoes. Jim also only seen this in mom and pop places to eat; while I served tons of like things at Tracy's while waiting tables, I am pretty sure we had it at home.

Then last night, I made broccoli and corn casserole. 1 can of creamed corn, 1 can of corn, 4 cups of broccoli, 1 cup cheddar cheese, 1 sleeve of saltines, crushed, 3 eggs. It is from the Tightwad Gazette. Combine all and bake for about 1 hour. It is casserole goodness - but like I said, horrible for health.

Luckily, we finally had enough energy to clean (of course, having a house guest who is staying with us for 4 days was incentive) completely last night - and I feel better today so hopefully salad will be gracing my lips soon.

Friday, January 18, 2008


Many of you know how much I admire King's vision for the world. Anyways, it really upset me that American Mattress is running an ad about it.

"Celebrating King's Dream, we have a sale on mattresses...." What the heck!!!! Is King's dream really about selling mattresses?

Brian, my co-worker, believes that we need to not quote King for 50 years because it has become too popular, too obvious. He actually is going to give a sermon on that this Sunday - his first, I am excited for him.

King did say hard stuff in style, hence getting quoted so much. He was a beautiful speaker and writer - but if we don't take his words seriously - then all we get out his life is a sale of mattresses.

Hoping that your weekend shows you ways to challenge yourself like King challenged the U.S.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


Last night I said to Jim, while eating some pudding, we are addicted to pudding. He said, You are addicted to pudding and I am just along for the ride.

That is probably true. I love jello instant pudding, it is great for those of us who are trying to eat healthy and trying to get enough milk in a day and also need a bit of sweet. However, since my throat started hurting - it is a great sliding food.

Pray for us please, as Jim is now sliding back down into sickness and I probably have a good week or so before I can truly even think about being well.

Monday, January 14, 2008


When I was a kid, I remember hating Robitussin. I haven't had it at least since I left Waldo, until last night. Jim, always trying to take care of me, came home with Tussin (the fake robitussin) and pulp filled orange juice (which he doesn't enjoy and I love). They haven't changed the taste - but it works, hence why everyone knows what it tastes like. Here is a hint - have a bit of chocolate pudding after drinking the Tussin - it makes it less icky.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Ponderings of the week

My college class was still here until Thursday and I got another class on Thursday night who are here until Tuesday.

More ponderings:

I really like my church and my neighborhood. The class wasn't staying with us at First Church; so I hosted them one evening at the church for one session - The Men of Destiny - for those who know them. I was happy to be in my area of Chicago for a time after spending most of a week not in my neighborhood.

I was on the CTA from 7:40 until 1 pm almost straight on Wednesday- dropping off teams at the places they needed to go, I also lost a student in that time period (he was found).

In the doctor's words that made me giggle, "You pissed off your nerves" causing numbness in two of my fingers on my right hand. I went to the doctor yesterday because of the numbness that started on Wednesday. She said she has seen it in bowlers as well - I just was carrying water bottles in a plastic bag. It should go back to normal in a week or so.

I am going to see the play - White People - for the second time in one week this afternoon. It really brings up great points about subtle racism in the US. It caused amazing discussion in my other college kids, so hopefully these as well.

As a part of this story telling class, they are learning to tell my story as the DOOR director - so Jim gets a lot of questions and they want to see more of my life than just my babysitting is going to be fun tomorrow as we are followed by a video camera and tape recorder.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Something you would overhear at our house

Sounds like something I would say....
Homer:    Marge, you've been out there all morning.
Marge: So?
Homer: So? Lying on the couch and eating stuff isn't the
same if
you aren't around to see it.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Artist History

Found this link out on the intarwebs following this artists line of work since he was five, the art is still being created so it's an interesting read.

Check it out

Monday, January 7, 2008

overheard at 3556 W. Congress

After several days of leaving at 6 in the morning and returning at 11 pm. I told Jim:

"Again, thanks for being so supportive of my job and my hours. I really appreciate it."

He states:

"Thanks for being so ticklish. I really appreciate it." And precedes to tickle me....


I have been leading a college class for the last couple days and here are some of my reflections on what we have been doing.

I studied Greek and can read it fluently, I love church studies and enjoy going to various worship services, I am the leader and I take myself fairly seriously, but upon stepping into the Greek Orthodox church yesterday morning - I still found myself wanting to reinact scenes from My Big Fat Greek Wedding. The service was all in Greek - so I found my mind wondering....

Last night, we went to a Hare Krishna love feast. I thought it was awesome. They answered all the questions we had and encouraged us to take part in all the dancing. They provided a meal the size of my body - great Indian food. I was thankful that I had the opportunity to go.

I love my job - I get to go to great plays, great churches, eat good food, and last night heard in reflection how opinions of the city are changing for the better! What more could I ask for...

Friday, January 4, 2008


I have been meaning to post about Chalk the movie that we saw over New Year's. It is amazing for someone who has so many teachers in her life! Morgan Spurlock (of Supersize Me) produced it. The website is It is funny, its not a documentary - but brings to light some fun school stuff - and makes some points that I know are true.

Here is what the website said:

In the 'doc' comedy style of "The Office" and "Best in Show", CHALK pulls you into the frenetic and awkwardly painful journey of three novice teachers as they navigate one memorable school year. Director Mike Akel provides a rare and realistic teacher's perspectve into the absurd, provocative and occasionally volatile world of public education. In a country where 50% of teachers quit within the first three years, CHALK delivers an enormous dose of heart, hilarity, and hope for America's most important institution.

Wow they think of everything

That is what I think of Jim's post.

Love Bed

Someone figured out a way to be able to snuggle with your significant other and not lose the feeling in your arm.

The description is:

The middle section of the mattress is broken into slats, making it possible to wrap your arms around someone without cutting off your circulation, or sleep on your belly while sticking your feet straight down.

And you can find more info here

Thursday, January 3, 2008

overheard at the pool

Being that it is really cold here, many kids were taking showers in their swimsuits to warm up running in and out actually. I walked by and heard - I should join Iamaddicted

I laughed outloud.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

I thought the city was different

People in my DOOR groups often ponder outloud - doesn't it feel anonymous living in a city? Some like that idea, others not so much.

My answer is usually no with some exceptions. Here is an example of why:

A couple weeks ago, after a fresh batch of snow, I went swimming at the indoor pool that is housed in a local community center which also houses a medical clinic, children's programming and other community programs. Outside the medical clinic, a woman who was registering people for extra kid insurance stopped me and asked if I needed socks. I laughed and said that no, and then she said in a lower voice, no really, hon, do you need socks? I assured her I did own socks just stupid for not wearing them into the building.

Well, today after a fresh snow and after weeks of wearing tennis shoes to the pool, I decided to grab crocs instead out of stupidity - however, in my bag I did have thick wool socks to wear after I got out of the pool. As I was doing this, I thought - if that woman sees me she is not going to believe I own socks, but I haven't seen her in a couple weeks - the length of time I had been wearing tennis shoes. I even parked on the other side of the building just so I might not have to see her.

I ran in and guess who met me at the door? And, she said - "The last time I saw you, I asked you to wear socks - where are they?" I pulled them out of my bag to show her I owned them.

I doubt I ever will try to go without again.

Top something movies of 2007

Yeah I'm sick but I still want to do some top 10ish of movies I saw this year...

It seems after doing some searching that I haven't seen all the movies everyones rating so high on their top lists...meh

If I had seen Sweeney Todd, Charlie Wilsons War I guess those movies would probably be on the list so heres my top 8

8. Simpsons Movie
7. Superbad
6. Waitress
5. Sicko
4. Ratatouille
3. Dan in Real Life
2. Knocked Up
1. Juno

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

a new year

What a difference a year makes.

On the last day of 2006, I came home early from a recruiting trip in order to be a part of the church celebrating the new year but also so I could get my first new year's eve kiss at midnight. I was sillyness being excited about that.

On the last day of 2007, I went to the doctor with Jim thinking we both might have strep throat, watched a movie until the ripe old hour of 9 when Jim went to bed, and while in bed reading I happened to notice that midnight had happened, so I kissed Jim, the sick snoring monster, on the cheek and said Happy New Year's babe, which he swatted me away and said - you too baby in his sleep - he doesn't remember any of it.

Happy New Year's Everyone!