Thursday, July 29, 2010

More Musings From The Road

Troy entertained us with his headrest crown.

Of course, I knew there would be some things I would leave out when I wrote my Holiday World recap. Here are some funny things seen and heard on our trip:

While in “The Rental”, on the way up to Holiday World, we were listening to Troy declare his love for Selena Gomez and then he began to sing one of her songs, “Round and Round” for us.
I asked him, “What is a love life?”
His response: “I have no idea!”

I can’t remember what prompted this one, but I think I told Troy if he didn’t act right we were going to take him somewhere and leave him.
His response: “I don’t want to go to an orphanage!”

The adults are complaining more than the kids for a change!” – Dalton, Melissa’s son.

I don’t know how many of you have been to a water park recently but let me tell you, I don’t know if I have ever seen so many people with tattoos in my life. I think I saw more tattoos on this trip than I have in my whole lifetime. I also saw way more of some people than I ever cared to see. If you want to feel great about the way you look, go to a water park.

I finally was able to donwload the picture of the toilet from my phone and lighten it up a little bit:

Cool, huh?

If I think of anything else, I'll add it to the list but right now I feel like my brain is fried and I can't think of anything else that was funny or that I left out of the original post. The reason I don't have many pictures is because I didn't take my big camera - you know, what with the water and everything. I had some small cameras that I brought with me and took zero pictures with them. I'll just have to remember everything in my head... except for the toilet! I have proof of it's loveliness! Ya'll have a good day!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

How About a Little Cheer on this Here Blog?

I know you all came here this week looking for a recap of my whirlwind trip with Jackie and her family to Holiday World. I’m sorry that I’m just now getting to it, but, well, you know.

So, last Friday afternoon, I was picked up by Tim, Jan, Jackie, Troy and Ashlyn to begin our trip to Santa Claus, Indiana and Holiday World. Tim and Jan had rented a Toyota Sienna for the trip and let me tell you, folks, it was nice and roomy. I’ve never been a fan of the mini van, but when it comes to traveling, it was quite lovely. I could stretch out my legs without shoving my feet in someone’s face. What made me laugh the most about the crimson colored Sienna is that Troy continually referred to it as “The Rental.” I kid you not, I’m laughing even as I type this. You would find it funny too if you could see a seven-year old going around talking about “The Rental.” I assume he was also a fan.

So, we hit the road and headed north and played trivial pursuit on the iPod and talked about various things, none of which I can currently recall. After about four hours or so of riding, we got off the interstate in Owensboro, Kentucky to have dinner. We planned to eat at Cheddar’s, but just like the one in Huntsville, it was packed and the wait was 45 minutes to an hour so we ended up at Real Hacienda, which was kind of across the street. Real Hacienda was obviously a local spot and the best thing about it was the toilet, and no, I am not kidding.

The toilet in the ladies’ restroom was dark blue with sunflowers; and I’m not talking the seat, I’m talking the actual toilet. Clearly a lot of work was put in to the crafting of this toilet. I have a picture of it on my phone, but it didn’t turn out too well. It was really dark in the restroom. Needless to say, all four of us girls were quite fascinated by the toilet and wished we had one of our own to showcase. OK, maybe not.

We got back in “The Rental” and headed north to Tell City, Indiana, which would be our home for the night. Mike and Melissa (Jackie’s sister and brother-in-law) along with their two kids and their kids’ two friends pulled up after we did. By the time we arrived I was a ready for a little quiet. After spending five hours in “The Rental” with a seven and six year old, I needed to hear nothing but the silence for a little while. Clearly, I am not used to all the excitement. Jackie sensed that I needed some time to myself and let me crash in the hotel room while everyone else played a game that Melissa had brought. I hate I missed out on playing the game, but was also thankful to just “be.”

Being the early bird that I am, I woke up about 10 minutes after 6:00 and got my shower and did my Bible reading for the day. I went downstairs about 7:00 to eat breakfast and by the time I got back upstairs, Jackie and Troy were in the process of waking from their gentle slumber. The quiet time the night before and the night of rest had me rejuvenated and ready to hit the ground running, not to mention the fact that we stayed at a Holiday Inn Express, which apparently give you the ability to be and do anything – at least according to the commercials.

We finally got in “The Rental” and on the road a few minutes after 9:00 and headed towards Holiday World. I don’t remember what time we arrived at the park. I think it was around 10:00 or maybe it was before. Ken and Jamie (Jackie’s dad and step-mom) had reserved group tickets for us since there were 15 people in our group. They picked up the tickets and distributed them and we entered the park. We had plans to hit the water park first since a friend of Melissa’s said that was the best thing to do because more people went to the water park in the afternoon. The water park opened at 10:30 and there were people everywhere waiting to get in. Tim rented us some lockers to put our things in and once we got situated with our things locked away we went to the water park and immediately got in line for a water slide. The group ended up splitting up and we would occasionally hook back up. Mostly those of us in “The Rental” stuck together and we would see the others at various times throughout the day. The water park was a ton of fun! The water felt very refreshing since it was the hottest day of the year in Indiana. About mid-day we had some lunch and then did a few more water slides before decided to change into our street clothes and go to the non-water side of the park.

After we changed clothes, I started feeling sick. I’m not sure if I was somewhat dehydrated or had heat exhaustion or a combination of the two, but I was sick to my stomach and felt as though I was going to pass out. I lay down on the ground while we were waiting for Tim to get some bottles of water. After a few hours of drinking fluids and sitting, I felt a little better. The worst thing about getting sick was that I was only able to ride one roller coaster, and roller coasters are one of my absolute favorite things but I just didn’t think my stomach could handle it. The heat was absolutely miserable. Melissa and Ken also got a little queasy.

Wouldn’t you know it, in addition to the record setting heat; they also had a record setting attendance at Holiday World on the Saturday we were there. I haven’t been able to find out how many people were there (I’d seriously venture to say over 100,000), but Jamie sent Jackie a text and told her it was a record crowd. This is also what we heard from people in line who had been there before. Melissa talked to a lady that said she had never seen it that crowded and rarely had to wait in long lines when she had been before. Ken and Jamie, who had been before also said the same thing. It figures.

We finally rounded up all the troops and left the park around 6:00 or so. We went back to “The Rental” and headed south. We stopped at the same exit in Owensboro to eat, but no one wanted to eat at Real Hacienda. So, we ended up eating at Culver's, which has “Butterburgers” which are hamburgers – maybe they butter the bread. I still haven’t figured that one out. The food was good and most everyone had dessert too, since ice cream was a specialty there. Jackie and I were fascinated with the drink top dispensers. They pulled down and had one top in it and when you shut the door, the dispenser would retrieve another top. I realize this is the worst explanation known to mankind, but when you see me, ask me about it and I’ll be happy to provide a demonstration.

After dinner, we loaded up in “The Rental” again and started towards home. We sang some church songs with the kids, which reminded me of when I was a kid because we did the same thing on road trips. We arrived at my house for the first offload a little bit after midnight. The first thing I did was take a shower because I was so sticky from all the sweating I had done earlier in the day.

We all had a great time and I think we are planning to do it again; only at a different time because the heat was too much. So, maybe in late May or early June it won’t be as bad.

A special thanks to Tim, Jan, Jackie, Troy and Ashlyn for inviting me and letting me tag along. And a extra special thanks to “The Rental” for making the trip rather relaxing.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

With My Luck, It Was Bound To Happen

Well, folks after two years and 19 days of dating, I am once again a singleton. Tony ended our relationship on Sunday after months and months of broken promises. I am just now beginning to feel a little better but am obviously still quite heartbroken and sad. Obviously this was God’s will and I am sure the Lord has something bigger and better in the works. I’ve just got to wait and see what it is. Jackie says that Tony definitely made me more patient. He also gave me the gift of the love of cycling, which may seem odd, but it sure helps you get through the summer months. Anyway, I wish nothing but the best for Tony. I hope he finds out who he is and what it is he needs in life and I pray that God blesses him with a happy future.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Some Randomness to Close Out the Week

I’m sorry to say this will be the last post for the week. Please dry your tears. I promise to return.

Tomorrow (Thursday), I’ll be out of pocket getting some blood work done and watching the final mountain stage in this year’s Tour de France. This year’s tour has been amazing! It seems like every stage has been full of excitement and I am really looking forward to tomorrow’s stage. Personally, I’m hoping for a big shake up.

Friday, I will be traveling to Santa Claus, Indiana with Jackie and her whole family (Troy, Ashlyn, Tim Jan, Melissa, Mike, Dalton, and Madolyn). We are going to spend Saturday at Holiday World. I had not heard of Holiday World until just a few months ago when Jackie was telling me about it. Apparently her niece, McKenzie said it was the greatest place on earth. Funny, I always thought that was Disney World. Anyway, we have a whirlwind of a trip planned and will be returning late Saturday evening/early Sunday morning. I am really looking forward to it. It looks like more fun than I can handle in one day.

I’m feeling much better about my garment choices today, thanks for asking.

Tomorrow marks six weeks until the start of college football season! Just when I think I won’t survive the summer, I look up and there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.

I want to take this opportunity to publicly thank Jackie for watching Persons Unknown. I really needed a friend to watch with me so I could talk about this show to someone that was actually watching. This show is crazy good; I’m just sad no one took notice. That’s what happens when you put a show up against that sinful Bachelorette.

Why is it when you get a new haircut it takes a couple of weeks for your hair to fall back in place properly? Am I the only one that has this problem? I never like my hair until precisely two weeks after a cut.

Thanks to those of you that clicked over on my Examiner page and checked out my first article; I’ve earned one whole penny! I posted a new article today about where you can purchase fresh tomatoes. Check it out and let me know what you readers want to hear about regarding food.

I drank sweet tea for lunch which means I will become personally associated with the bathrooms this afternoon. I swear tea goes right through me! It’s rather annoying and inconvenient.

Why are work out clothes so expensive? I mean, really? Who wants to pay $70 for a pair of pants you are just going to sweat in?! I don’t get it. Maybe I should start and inexpensive work out clothing company.

The internets is an amazing world, people. Yes, I said internets. I think it’s funny that way. A friend of mine who I knew when I lived in North Carolina found me, thanks to the help of the internets. She lives in South Africa (shhh! Don’t tell Tony or he will be upset we didn’t bum a stay at her house for the World Cup!) and she and her husband do missionary work. She has a son named Asher (she calls him The Bear) and she just announced recently that she is pregnant with bambino number two. You can check out her delightful blog here.

Did you know that I have written more posts in the seven months of 2010 than I did in all of 2009? I hope you appreciate that. Ha! The Jim Brickman post still remains my most commented on post at a whopping 12 comments, most of which hate what I had to say; but I was only speaking from the heart.

We have a serious bug problem here at work. I think I could write a whole post about it. Needless to say, I’m a little traumatized.

Well, that about wraps things up for this post. The tea is calling if you get my drift. I hope to be back next week with tales of Holiday World and hopefully pictures too. I hope the remainder of your week is great and your weekend too! Thanks for reading.

Kendra's Birthday and a Different Shirt

Well, I’m in a different shirt today, folks and it feels so good. I took that other shirt off as soon as I got home yesterday and put on something else. I felt like a new woman afterwards.

Last night, some of the girls got together and dined and P.F. Chang’s for Kendra’s birthday. If I remember correctly, she turned 27. Kendra and her sister Candy were there, Erika, Jackie, me, and Meagan and baby Lucy. We had a grand time.

We had not been together as a group since the end of American Idol and we were actually missing a few people from our group, but we had a fun time anyway and it was really great to catch up with everyone. Not to mention the fact that I got to eat at one of my favorite places. I think I could eat another order of calamari right now. Man, that stuff is good! Here are some photos:

Candy - the organizer of the dinner

Kendra - the birthday girl

Meagan and baby Lucy

Erika and a leaned back Jackie
(she told me not to post this photo - love ya!)

The group - Not sure what’s up with that stray hair on my forehead, and yes, this is what you look like when you go the gym four days a week for four months and don’t lose one pound. Please pray for me!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I Just Need to Complain for a Minute

I really hate the shirt I am wearing today. I don’t know why it is bothering me so badly but it’s driving me nuts and I’d give just about anything to go home and change, or just go home for that matter. I wore this top because I wore pants and I wore pants because I wanted to wear close toed shoes and I wanted to wear close toes shoes because I got my new shoe inserts yesterday. Yes, shoe inserts dictated what I wore to work today; I am officially old.

The air at work today is really thick and muggy and there is a lot of humidity in the air which doesn’t help that I hate the shirt I am wearing today. Would someone be kind enough to bring me a new outfit?

It’s deathly hot outside and my utility bill is high. When will winter be here?

Micromanagers are annoying. That’s all I’m going to say about that.

I hate the shirt I’m wearing today.

If you ask me, the customer is always wrong and always annoying. Just saying.

Thanks for that. Please return tomorrow for something a little more positive... and a different shirt.

Tuesday Movie Review - Inception

Yes, I realize all I blog about these days is movies, but nothing else is really going on. This past Friday, Tony and I went to see Inception. I was looking forward to it as the previews, I thought, were very intriguing. I wasn’t let down. This movie was great and it kept me thinking long after the credits rolled.

As I told Jackie, in my opinion, Leonardo DiCaprio does not pick a bad script, would you agree? If Leo (yes we are on a first name basis) picks a movie, you can take it to the bank that it is going to be great and interesting and not like anything you’ve seen before. This movie was no exception.

I won’t give anything away and therefore won’t go into much more detail here, but I’m sure you already know the movie is about dreams. After the movie, I dreamt about the movie and had one of the best nights of sleep I have had in a long time. I don’t know if it was directly or indirectly related to the viewing of this film, but I tend to believe it was.

This movie was incredible – go see it!

Tony’s take: pretty good.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thursday Movie Review - Eclipse

Recently, Jackie and I went to the theater to see Eclipse, yes, we are lovers of the Twilight series and no, we are not teenagers. Seriously, if you haven’t read these books, do! They are good.

The first Twilight movie I thought was okay, the second I really liked, and the third I think was the best one yet! I don’t know what it was about this movie that I liked the most. It followed closely with the book, for one, which is a huge plus. There were battle scenes – cool! Maybe it’s the fact that the people playing these characters have actually grown into the people they are portraying and therefore it was more believable. I’m not sure. But, I thought it was great.

Jackie and I both agreed it was the best one yet and we can’t wait for the next one – NEXT YEAR! I think Hollywood spoiled us by releasing two so close together. This was the first time we had seen a Twilight movie by ourselves. Usually Jackie’s nieces are with us, but this year, Brooke is in France and McKenzie is doing who knows what. Getting ready for college I guess. I missed having them around, but Jackie and I had a good time nonetheless.

If you are a fan of the Twilight series and haven’t yet seen this movie, then go this weekend. The crowds are probably thinned out and you won’t have to bump elbows with a stranger. If you’re not a Twilight person or haven’t seen the first two, then I would recommend seeing the first two movies or reading the books before you go. Otherwise you might not know what the heck is going on.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

An Announcement From Nat

I wanted to let all four of my readers know that I am now writing for as Huntsville’s American Food writer. Yes, I know, I’m not sure why I’m the food writer either, but for some strange reason this is the position for which I applied and was selected. You can check out my new page here. Be sure and view it a lot and pass the word along as well. Obviously I get paid based on the number of views; so I’m shamelessly plugging my page. I also need your input on things to write about. If you have any suggestions, please leave them in the comment section here on The Chronicles of Nat or over at my examiner page. Thanks for your support in everything I do, you all are a great group of friends.

P.S. Thanks to Erika and Tony for proofreading my bio.

Crying Over Spilt Milk

The saying goes, “don’t cry over spilt milk,” but I’m here to tell you this is exactly what I feel like doing some days. Every morning, I bring my breakfast to work which typically consists of cereal and yogurt. I bring my milk in a separate container to pour over my cereal so that the cereal won’t get soggy. I don’t know what it is about me and my bad luck with spilling milk, but it happens almost every day.

I have a few different containers that I bring my milk in; all of them have lids and all of them tend to tip over and inadvertently spill milk all over the bottom of my lunch bag. When I get to the refrigerator at work to put my lunch inside, is when I notice that milk is everywhere. So, then I have to go through the process of cleaning it all up, which is sticky and tedious and aggravating and generally a pain in the derriere.

I don’t know why I can’t remember to simply just carry my milk in my hand instead of in my lunch bag. You would think I would have learned my lesson by now; but, no, I did it again this morning and then proceeded to spill milk on my desk as well.

Sometimes I will just bring milk in a large cup and carry it in my hand, but I always end up spilling this milk on my feet, which are usually in sandals which means I have milk on my toes. Why do I have such bad luck with milk?

So, if for some nice reason you are thinking of getting me a gift of some sort, how about a thermos or some spill proof gadget that will hold milk. Otherwise, I may be crying over spilt milk the rest of my working days.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Monday Movie Review - The A Team

There’s not much going on in the life of Nat these days. I did see a couple of movies recently and meant to review them for you last week but never got around to it. Here’s one of the two:

I don’t know how many of you were a fan of The A-Team television show from the 1980’s, but I can remember it being on the TV in the background while I was playing or doing something else, and oddly enough I even remember watching bits and pieces of it. One episode in particular, I remember Mr. T. taking a shower and a snake came up the drain, from that moment on I was a little afraid of the shower we had in our house on East Helena Drive.

When I saw the previews for The A-Team movie, I would literally laugh out loud, and yes, I realize I do that a lot. I really wanted to see this movie when it came out, but I think Tony was a little apprehensive. Finally a week or so ago we had an opportunity to see it and were both pleasantly surprised.

This movie obviously has lots of action, but it also has a storyline, which you won’t always find in action movies this day and age. It had a lot of comic relief as well, which made me laugh so hard my stomach hurt.

The characters were well cast and I can watch just about anything with Bradley Cooper in it. I may have mentioned this before, but I’ve been a Bradley Cooper fan since he was on Alias as Sydney Bristow’s best guy pal. He is just adorable and funny too.

This movie had a little bit of everything for everyone and I really, really enjoyed it. Tony’s take: it was better than I thought it would be, aka “pretty good.”

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

New Flower Bed!

This past weekend, my dad and I put in a new flower bed on the side of my house. He also trimmed up the shrubs and I put mulch in the existing and new flower beds and everything now looks really great. I took a few photos to share with you.

This is one of the flower beds before the shrubs were trimmed up. This is the only before picture I took because I was pretty dirty and didn't want to get mud all over the camera.

Same flower bed after new mulch and trimmed shrubs.

The other side with new mulch and trimmed shrubs

The new flower bed on the side of the house.

It contains the hydranga that I planted last year

An elephant ear plant that my neighbor Jeff gave me

Some day lilies

A new hydrangea

And a new shrub - can't rememeber what kind.
If you are wondering why the bed went crooked here,
it's because this is where I keep my garbage can and it needed a little extra space.

And, just for you lovers of The Tide, here are a couple of photos of her looking out the glass door,
which is one of her favorite things to do:

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

July 6

Here are some interesting (or not-so-interesting) facts about July 6. In 1854 in Jackson, Michigan, the first convention of the United States Republican Party was held. In 1942, Anne Frank and her family go into hiding in the "Secret Annexe" above her father's office in an Amsterdam warehouse. In 1957, John Lennon meets Paul McCartney at a fete in Woolton. That turned out pretty well if I do say so myself! In 1986 – Davis Phinney became the first American cyclist to win a road stage of the Tour de France. By the way, if you are not watching Le Tour this year, you need to tune in! Oh my! It’s only day four and oh the excitement! I can hardly stand it!! I love Le Tour and that’s no lie! In 1998, Roy Rogers died. July 6 marks the first day of San Fermín festival in Pamplona, Spain, which lasts until July 14. I must admit I’ve always wanted to witness the running of the bulls. July 6, 2008 I started dating Tony – we’ve been together for two years. That’s hard to believe. It’s also Tony’s dad’s birthday. And today, July 6, 2010, Tony was laid off from work. So, I’m writing this little post to ask you all to keep Tony in your prayers that he will find a new job soon. We may not know what the future holds, but we know who holds the future, and I know the Lord has a great plan for Tony! Happy Two Years, Tony! You rock the house!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Happy Independence Day!

I'll be enjoying some time off the next few days and will be back next Tuesday.
I hope everyone has a Happy Independence Day!