off to school...

"Back to school. Back to school, to prove to Dad that I'm not a fool. I got my lunch packed up, my boots tied tight, I hope I don't get in a fight."
-billy maddison

Adam had orientation on Saturday and then I got to attend the family open house with him. Here is a picture of Adam on his 1st day of school.

Today Powers and I missed our 3rd musketeer. Adam was at school and I talked to a dog about laundry and a competitive swimmer girl who was in the lane next to me at the Y today. Powers is the best listener. Then I had my 2nd interview for the admissions counselor job. I will know Wednesday. So, if come Wednesday, I don't write "hey, i got the job!" then don't be like, "hey, did you get the job?? did you hear yet?" because then I'll have to be like "oh, um yeah. i got it. but then i decided that i wanted to go into carpentry instead, so i turned it down."

How did the interview go? Well, I don't know. I mean thats a hard question. I didn't say anything outrageous or use any obscene slurs. Did the interviewer break out into song and dance?
well, close.
no, actually not close.
summary: the interview went pretty well! i liked the higher ups.

moving on. adam is studying right now. we're going to have to turn our huge quantities of time together from this summer into QUALITY time. hey-o! and that we will. He's a hard studyier. studdier? studier? student. he studies hard. however you want to say it. the point is, he's working hard. and i am catching up on my correspondence. so, there. a final quote to celebrate adam's 1st week of class. from the most thought-provoking, intelligent, daring movie of our age.

"Mr. Madison, what you've just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul."
-Billy Maddison


this is it...

Its here! Adam registers tomorrow and his orientation begins. He is a mixture of excitement and nervous. He is going to make it though, that man. Our hope is in the Lord!
Husband will be in class everyday til 5 this 1st year. and then studying at night, of course. Coffee much?

A moment to brag on Adam. Talk about the best husband living. funny. Puts up with my crazy crazies. visionary. Hard-working, disciplined. can stomp a joke into the ground. Content. Satisfied with what he's got. The cutest science geek. A strong man, literally and figuratively. A man who banks his life on the promises of God. compassionate. a bookworm. loves being outside. considerate of peoples' feelings. always himself. secure. Must follow directions to a T. handsome. silly. loves his dog. a grateful son. patient. kind. athletic. granola. trustworthy. rejoicing. good stories. driven. faithful. solid. good laugh. childlike. and all around, the bestest husband around.

go adam.

future dr. jennings

in related craziness, i have signed up for the houston marathon in january! Well, with adam in med school, i got the time to train, folks. I'm excited- my mom & her crazy running buddies are running it and possibly my besty! Hooray for running long distances! and hydration belts. giddyup

speaking of my mom and her wild buddies- they are in canada hiking this week- you can read all about it at oldladyathletewannabe.blogspot.com or just click on "mom" at the side of this blog. they are some buff young women.



heard back from interview! have meeting with higher ups on monday. we shall see.....hip hop hooray.


the falls

Well, Adam's parents are in and so we drove up to niagara falls today! It was beautiful- you drive by all these vineyards to get there and then there you are- alongside this huge river that is suddenly becoming very wild. crazy rapids. waterfall ahead.
we rode the maid of the mist. oh yes, 'bruce almighty' anyone? The boat takes you right next to the falls and if you're going to make the journey, you have to ride the boat. You put on these great slickers and still get soaked. The wind coming off the falls is incredible! And, did you know that the Maid of the Mist is well known for its role in the July 9, 1960 rescue of Roger Woodward, a seven-year old boy who became the first person to survive a plunge over the Horseshoe Falls with nothing but a life jacket.

random: The boat involved in the rescue (known as Maid II) was retired from service in 1983 and relocated to the Amazon River, where it served as a missionary ship for years after.

the lady of the mist is the little speck sailing towards the falls.

the worst picture we ever took together.

'Anyway, I'm here with Katherine Hepburn's mom. Tell me, why did you toss the "blue heart of the ocean" jewel over the railing of Titanic? Did you feel bad at all letting Leo DiCaprio drown, while you were safe floating on the big door?... Is it my hair, Bill? Are my teeth not white enough? Or, like the great falls, is the bedrock of my life, eroding beneath me? eroooooding. erooooooding.'
-Bruce aboard the Maid of the Mist

the intense mist.

i mean, the pictures do not even do it justice. The falls are just incredible. Its not one of those things that you'd build up and then be disillusioned by. Its beautiful.

We only visited the American side, although we could see the Canadian side. The American side is kinda like Branson, you know, Wax museum. Hard Rock Cafe. Ripley's. But we heard the Canada side is amazing, so next time....

Wikipedia says
In October 1829, Sam Patch, who called himself The Yankee Leaper, jumped from a high tower into the gorge below the falls and survived; this began a long tradition of daredevils trying to go over the Falls. In 1901, 63-year-old school teacher Annie Edson Taylor was the first person to go over the Falls in a barrel as a publicity stunt; she survived, bleeding, but virtually unharmed. Soon after exiting the barrel, she said, "No one should ever try that again." Unfortunately, the fortune she hoped to make from a later lecture tour was never realized, as her manager was a con-man who took everything she owned. (Legend says that a small kitten rode in the barrel with her, but this seems to have been a whimsical myth. Still, when she posed with the barrel afterwards, the kitten sat placidly on top of it.) Since Taylor's historic ride, 14 other people have intentionally gone over the Falls in or on a device, despite her advice. Some have survived unharmed, but others have drowned or been severely injured.

Mom, Dad, and Son.

Here is Powers when we left. He wanted to play.


buffett and the coral reefers?

We sadly have no new reflections on Erie. We still like it, sure. But we just haven't done as much local stuff lately. However, in breaking news, there is a key west phest in erie this weekend. hosted by none other than the presque isle parrothead club. yes, its just as it sounds. ahoy! cast off your worries and your cares! now, last year there were performances by Peter Mayer and "Uncle" Jim Mayer. I'm guessing John's brother and uncle? thoughts? the mission of key west phest is to "party with a purpose" they raise a lot of money for charity. AND there's a boat parade. and a prize for the most tricked out boat. ...only those parrotheads. Adam and I are definitely going and will update you with our finds and perhaps a few pictures.

Also, they are auctioning off Two shirts worn by Peter Mayer during a Buffett show AND A drum head signed by Jimmy Buffett and the entire Coral Reefer Band. Brooke, I know you've been wanting those two sweaty Peter Mayer shirts, so I'm getting them for you. Think nothing of it. We like parrotheads. We think they are the highest (class) people we have met.

Anyone heard of usatf.org? Its a website where you can find running routes in your area or route your own running route and then see what the mileage is. Sometimes I like to be in oblivion and not know the actual mileage so that I can pretend I ran further than I really did. But the slightly compulsive side from high school cross country loved it and the fact that I didn't really know where I was going, just turn left on so and so street and right on blah street, you know?

But today on our run Powers started struggling. First he tried to act like he was sniffing something so as to slow down. Then he would blatantly try to stop. I felt like a crazy person, encouraging a dog. C'mon Powers, you can do it! Keep it up! I kept looking around for a water hose on someone's house where he could have a sip, but then I decided that the person needed to be outside if I was going to ask to use their waterhose. In case it was some crazy person who would yell at me for trespassing. I'm not good with being yelled at. But no one was outside or the people I saw outside were busy working on something but finally we came to this house and there were some kids outside. A variety of ages. Hey, i say. Can my dog have a sip of water from your water hose? Sure! Several kids rushed off to get water and brought back a variety of cups, saucers, bowls, and hoses for Powers to choose from. He gulped some water from the winning bowl ( go green! its so soothing. and granola) and then got some love from the children. Gotta love kids. Then we headed back out only to realize we were only maybe 400 yards from the house. whoops.
But he made it and now he's asleep on the floor.

Adam got his desk in today which means that the start of med school is upon us. A week from Monday Adam will begin his journey to becoming a doctor! And I will see substantially less of my husband. We've talked it over, you know, what med school will be like. How we're going to get quality time in together. What color folders should he get. you know, important stuff. But, like most things, you talk, you prepare, you analyze, you seek counsel from others who have gone before you (Thanks jen) . but then really it comes down to the experience. We won't really know what its like until we're diving head first in and hanging onto God's promises. But I'm so proud of Adam, he's going to be the best doctor. And to show how proud I am, maybe I should pack his lunch the 1st day and write a note on his napkin? Kinda like my mom did in Kindergarten? maybe a prize in there?

Well, our number of Erie friends has DOUBLED. from 2.... to 4! whoa there. We met Daniel & josie at church and they are new to the area too! Josie is pregnant with their 1st child & daniel is an air force recruiter! They lived in Alaska for 3 years so are wise in the ways of winter.

Of course, when Adam starts school, he will make a lot of new friends. Then I will slowly and methodically sabotage everyone of those relationships so that he has no choice but to only hang out with me. joke.
adam's parents come in sunday! niagara falls, i'm coming to tightrope across the top of you!

my 2 boys



"Of the things that followed I cannot at all say whether they were what men call real or what men call dream. And for all I can tell, the only difference is that what many see we call a real thing, and what only one sees we call a dream. But things that many see may have no taste or moment in them at all, and the things that are shown only to one may be spears and water-spouts of truth from the very depth of truth."

-C.S. Lewis "Till We Have Faces"


"live every week like shark week" -tracy jordan

Today I tried to make Magnolia cupcakes. As in, the cupcakes they make at the Magnolia Baker in New York. I found a recipe online and decided to make them before I had read the recipe too carefully. By the time I came home from the store to embark, it was too late to pull back upon discovering the oldtimey and difficult directions. And by old timey, I mean that there was more required than slice and bake cookies. But they were delicious and I'm quite proud.

This week we had our chimney worked on by a father/son masonry business. The father is from Germany and is probably the funniest man we've met in a while. He is at least 65 and flies an ultra light plane around. He has the craziest stories about his ultralight like the time he had to crashland in the forest and also the most pointed and sometimes slightly offensive political views. We like him, we could listen to him all day. He should have his own show.

Trivia: did you know your mouth produces 1 litre (1.8 pints) of saliva a day?

Anyone seen the previews for "ocean of fear- the worst shark attack in history" on discovery channel? Its the show that'll open up shark week this year. Its about the USS Indianapolis, sunk by Japanese torpedoes in the Philippine Sea on the night of July 30, 1945. Of the 1,196-man crew, about 900 sailors, many maimed and burned, were plunged into the water ... and floated helplessly for four days, beset by hunger, driven mad by thirst and menaced by hundreds of sharks.

Um, I'm fairly certain that the initial purpose of Shark Week was to promote understanding and encourage the conservation of sharks. But after watching that preview, I think that I'd be more likely to say, forget the balance of the ecosystem! Die sharks!

Once a week Adam & I go out to eat. This week, we went to Aoyama (Spelling?) Japanese restaurant. It was really good! Our favorite was the Spider roll. The only thing we didn't like so much about the place was that there were a few awkward floater employees. They didn't really do anything besides come by the table and swoop stuff away or ask questions that you had to ask them to repeat because you didn't understand the first time. I hate it when that happens. I've begun to just nodd and smile. Take a risk and say yes, no, or haha. I mean, if I don't really know the person, I'm not going to ask more than once. But other than that, it was good sushi and the awkward swoopers didn't really bother us as much as make us smile at one another and try not to laugh.

As you can see, not a whole lot is going on in our lives right now, so I'm really stretching with material. But Adam's parents are coming for their 1st visit next weekend! We are very excited and think we are going to niagara falls which is quite close! Any other suggestions?


big monsters

Projects are like big monsters that suck you in. It all starts out innocently enough. Lets just do this one thing. Then, its like if you give a mouse a cookie......
If you pull up the carpet, you're gonna have to pull out the staples, if you pull out the staples, you're gonna have to buff the wood, if you sand the wood, you're gonna have to stain the wood b/c its discolored, if you stain the wood, oh wait, we need to paint this wall, yeah its sick its this old lady pink color. lets paint it. oh wait, we need floor molding, the carpet left a gap in the wall. oh wait. what about..
and soon you've been consumed by the monster. You didn't even know it existed! But soon your eyes are filled with the flaws of the house and the holes that the previous project revealed. And before you can even appreciate the work you've just completed, you're onto fixing the next thing.
Also, home improvements are great marital counseling. Its like when Adam and I trained for our first triathlon together. It was the greatest relationship therapy. Leave it to a long run to make you tired and defeated and ready to have a regular festivus airing of the grievances. Festivus for the Rest of us! Anyways, home improvements can make me a little short, I've discovered. I'm trying to work on that. Adam, as usual, is a trooper and the hardest worker in the world.

Speaking of airing the grievances, let me air a little grievance against Erie trash collectors. These folks are picky! You've got to have your stuff bagged correctly or no go. We put an old torn up water house by our trash & recycables yesterday. No go. In waco, that hose would've been gone, well honestly it would've been gone before the trash people even came. It probably would've been picked up on an old pick up truck and sold in less than half an hour. But thats not the point. We tried to put out all the carpet we pulled up, but we couldn't fool the Erie sanitation dept. Oh no. I'm just giving them a hard time, they are good trash men and women. Just picky.





Still a work in progress. We're gonna stain the steps and upstairs hallway and we're letting the bathroom paint dry. Probably the only people who are interested in any of this are our parents & free and brooke (our home improv. mentors)
but my grievances have been aired, and i'm feeling better. lets go get high on paint fumes! (joke.)



In a previous entry, I posted a picture of our horrifying bathroom carpet. Adam and I applied to every stinking hgtv and tlc show possible, just on the offchance that our old bathroom could get a free fix up. Yet, we still haven't heard and so we have taken matters into our own hands. Today the carpet was pulled up. Adam is currently sanding the gunk and junk off the wood floors but by tonight it promises to be stained and in a nice condiiton. People who staple carpet padding and carpet over beautiful wood floors are crazy.

Sorry we don't have any exciting Erie stories. We haven't really done anything too exciting the past couple of days besides reading, working out at the YMCA, cooking with friends, church, and walking Powers. Later we'll post some pictures of the after product of the anti old ladying of our bathroom floor. I'm sure you're all so excited you may or may not be able to maintain bladder control.

Oh, also for those who asked. I called today and won't know about the job until the end of the month. Glorious unemployment.

Until then....


Bravo! Gopa!!

It was Fantastiko'....

We went to Greek Fest tonight with our Erie other half, the Allens. I wish i had cool greek heritage. All I know is that one of my mom's relatives came over on the Mayflower as an indentured servant and was the 1st man put in stocks in the new world. Brilliant! oh, Edward Doty. And I think my dad is scott/irish/italian or something. But Greek fest was so fun. There were TONS of people there. And surprisingly no references to the amazing power of Windex. We started out the night with a cold one & a gyro. It was good! Then we toured the church. It was beautiful. It reminded us of the churches that we saw in Spain. Very ornate.

Then we saw some sassy dancers. They were very impressive but we were mainly enamored with one fellow. He always looked as if he was sick or quite hungover and about to pass out. His facials were awesome.

They did a lot of traditional greek dances and Adam even commented that he could just see them dancing around king arthur's court.

Then, the best dance came. Suddenly, the guys walked off. We thought they were going to fetch some water for sick/ hungover guy, but they went and got a table. Then they lifted up the table and hoisted this happy guy on it. He danced a jig and reminded us of Elf's dance in the mailroom. It was impressive!

me hanging out with some greek dancers by the dumpsters. No big deal.

The dancing wasn't only for the costumed.

Then we had some greek pastries. I gotta be honest, as much as I liked the gyros, the pastries weren't really my type. I have really refined tastes like chocolate chip cookie dough and gobstoppers. haha.

Adam with the assortment of pastries.

And then Sarah & Josh bought the loaf. Its kinda like a funnel cake without powdered sugar. And in the shape of a huge loaf. Drizzled with honey.

amazing dancing shoes

Okay, this guy was a card. He was an older fellow who played percussion. He took a smoke break between every song and sometimes smoked even during the songs. Multi-tasker.

Other pictures from the night:

Greek Fest was fantastic. Best people watching around and lots of fun culture.

Next stop: Polish Fest.