Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Simi Valley

Here is a picture from John's hotel room in California. He's in Simi Valley, which is also the location of the Reagan Library, which you can see the main part on the side of the mountain (the white building on the hillside).

He's still pretty bored, but looking forward to exploring L.A. this weekend. Also going to visit the library later this week.

It looks like a pretty nice place to be stuck for three weeks, huh?!

Monday, January 30, 2006

There IS an Arizona!

Well, unlike the country song, there IS an Arizona, and I am here. It's hot, but it's actually quite beautiful! It's really neat here in Tempe, because everything is new. You know how sometimes you drive through a place like Tulsa where everything was built at the same time (1920s) and you can just imagine how exciting it was back then to have everything fresh and new and "hip"? Well, here in Tempe everything IS fresh and new and hip. It makes me wonder what it will all be like in 50 years when it's old and run-down. But for now, it's one of the most beatiful business areas I've ever seen!

Funny how things work out--John left today for his training in California. 1 day down, 19 to go! He actually had to change planes in Phoenix to get out there, and we ended up on the same flight to Phoenix! So, I got a few more hours with him, plus he was there to keep me calm on the plane. I don't like flying, as I'm sure you all remember. It was nice--he's so excited about traveling and learning new things out there in California, so I am excited for him. Yes, I cried. I cried on the plane as we were descending, and I cried when we parted ways at the airport. But I haven't cried since. It will all be fine, I just really love being with him and don't like to be apart for very long!

We have a busy few days here in Arizona. I'm more excited to be here than I thought I would be. Maybe because I know my kitties are in good hands. My sister is housesitting for us, staying overnight all week so the cats aren't alone. How pathetic am I? I keep thinking about how worried I am about my cats when I'm gone and how much I look forward to seeing them--I ca't imagine how much people must miss their kids when traveling! Anyway, Julia is staying with them, making sure they aren't lonely.

I'll be back late Thursday night. Of course, I didn't remember to bring a digital camera with me, so probably no picutres of Arizona to come. However, John will probably have lots of pics as he makes his way through Hollywood, etc.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Extreme Makeover: Part 2

Here is part of our team with Dan this hottie from Extreme Makeover show. Me, Jana, and Jeanna. You can see the house in the background.

Doesn't he look like Tom Cruise?!

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Here is the House being built by Extreme Makeover. Just imagine--the family lived in a trailer before they left on vacation Sunday!

Extreme Makeover Adventure

Well, we got in very late last night from our Extreme Makeover Adventure in Bartlesville. I'll get the big question out of the way: Ty was not in town. Apparently, the show films two episodes a week and has different team members assigned to each one. The common denominator, Ty, flys back and forth to the job sites, every other day. Yesterday he was at the Houston job site for yesterday. We were disappointed, but also felt very tired thinking of all the flying Ty has to do!

Alas, we were not diappointed at the experience. One thing we have learned is that when you're bringing food somewhere, people part the seas for you! We were able to pull up right to the house and park next to the hospitality tent for the crew (our client was providing dinner for the crew last night). The house is actually being built in Dewey, Oklahoma about 15 minutes outside of Bartlesville. It's also known as the sticks. You drive through many miles of backwoods before you come upon this massive structure surrounded by HUNDREDS of bright blue shirts.

When we pulled up, the house was being framed. There was no roof when we pulled up and three hours later when we left--it had a roof, windows, and siding was going up. That's how fast they work! The story of the White Family is that they are a family of 10 children, 5 still living in the home. The father was a minister until he died suddenly in April of a heart attack, leaving his wife and children with no income. They lived in a small trailer (and we mean trailer). Can you imagine? At the minimum, they had 6 people sharing this home. At one time they had as many as 12.

Anyway, Extreme Makeover team has come in to build them a brand new, GIANT house! They have 3 shifts of 100 contruction volunteers each working round the clock for 7 days. Incredible.

We did get to meet a couple of the "celebrity" design team members. We met Paige (blonde that wears pink all the time) and took our picture with Dan (who is a total hottie and looks like Tom Cruise!). So, we got our excitement there.

Anyway--it was a really cool experience to see something like that. Especially for me because I watch the show every week. It would be like visiting the set of Lost or CSI: or something for those fans.

We took LOTS of pictures and as soon as they are downloaded to the work computer I will post!

Sunday, January 22, 2006

New Cars!

Well, I'm back from Dallas/Houston. It went pretty well, and I worked most nights til 9:00. But, I am pretty proud of myself--I drove from Dallas to Houston and I drove most of the time around the city. I managed to find (with my boss navigating) 4 TV stations, the agency Houston office, and an elementary school. Which is pretty good, considering I am a very nervous drive and freak out easily on highways and in busy traffic. John would be proud...

While I was in Texas, John was doing a lot of research. Research on new cars. I am so proud of him--he was calling every Nissan dealership in town, working the numbers and dealing for a new car. I have long been a fan of the Altima, ever since our friends got one a few years ago. John and I had been thinking a Honda Accord, but with everything being about the same quality-wise on a Nissan, he decided to make that the goal. So by the time I got home Friday night, we had an appointment the next morning and our cars had to be ready to trade. It only took us 3 hours total to buy the car. He really did a great job in working the numbers and getting the car I've been wanting for so long. So, we now have two new cars, see the pictures!

My trip plans have changed a little. I am sooooo happy that I get to be home this whole week. John and I both leave next Monday, him for California and me for Phoenix. So, we'll enjoy this week while we can. One exciting thing is that Tuesday our whole office is taking a trip to Bartlesville. "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" is there working on an episode, and our client actually volunteered to cook a meal for the cast and crew. It's like 500 people total, so we'll be helping out in the restaurant. I'm crossing my fingers we can be on the delivery team--Hello Ty Pennington! (I love you, John!) Anyway, I'll let you guys know if we actually get to go on the set. My family wants me to lobby for the show to re-do Arni and Nina's house. Maybe I'll rub some elbows while I'm there!

So, lots of exciting stuff going on. More than usual, actually!

We bit the bullet, and got a brand new car!! So, with John's new company car, we now have two brand new, 2006 vehicles! This is our new Nissan Altima. It's "smoke" colored if you can't tell, has beautiful khaki interior. We traded in both of our old cars (the Ranger and Neon) and got a pretty good deal on the Altima. It's not costing us much more a month than John's truck (my car was paid off) and it's much more reliable. It had 35 miles on it when we drove it off the lot! It's very roomy, and we are very excited! Posted by Picasa

Well, I mentioned in the last post John's new company car....and here it is! As I said, it's a little company-heavy. But, it's a free car and it only costs us $20 a month in insurance. It's brand new, and a pretty sweet ride! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Big Pimpin'...Farmer's Style

Well, while John didn't have the day off yesterday like I did, he did get a nice surprise. They signed over his company car! We now are pimping in a sweet off-white Dodge Magnum (station wagon on 'roids). You'll know it's us because of the "Farmer's" emblem all over the side! But, hey, it's a brand new car, for free, and will save us tons of money in gas and insurance each year. Yeah! I'll have John post a picture this week.

I am up early and ready to head out for the week to Dallas and Houston. But I will be home on Friday, so I know it won't be too long. I really do not like traveling with work. But, I guess it comes with the territory.

Happy Birthday Easton! He's 10 years old today, January 17th. We had a great time celebrating last night at Shogun's with the whole family. Not long and Mason will be turning 5!

Finally, we had heavy hearts this weekend as we learned the news of Josh and Jen Foster's new baby. Brett Andrew was born early Saturday morning, and lived and was loved for one beautiful hour with his parents. Even though the death was not unexpected, I don't think anyone gave up hope that he would be ok. Please keep Josh, Jen, and Big Brother Ty in your prayers, especially today as they bury their son, and through the next weeks as they heal from such a big loss. We're praying for them, and our hearts are with them.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

We went to bed with short sleeves on...and woke up to a winter wonderland! The next day it quickly melted in the 60-degree sun. But for a while, it was beautiful! Posted by Picasa

Don't blink--the weather might change...

First of all, in reference to the comment posted to my last blog--I don't think there's a soul out there who thinks I am a Texas fan. I have proven my hatred for Texas for many years. It is tried and true, and I hate Texas as much as I love the Sooners. And that's a lot.

Anyway, on to an update. We've had some craaaaazy weather here, which is not at all unusual for Oklahoma. Although, I don't think it's exactly normal to have a beautiful 75-degree day where we're sitting outside all day, gardening and playing like Sunday, and then wake up to over an inch of snow on Tuesday. That's not normal. Nonetheless, it was nice to have some pretty snow that stuck to the grass!

This weekend my bookclub met for the first time in 2006. We'd read a little dinky book last month (The Girl's Guide to Hunting and Fishing--it wasn't that good) and this month our new book is "Memoirs of a Geisha". I'm pretty far into it and it's really good! Back in October we read "Wicked" and it was VERY difficult to read, so the girls were a little leery of "Memoirs". We'll see how they like it. I know it's cheesy to be in a book club--but it's so much fun. We get together and talk about the book for like 30 minutes and spend the rest of the night eating and drinking and laughing--it's just a small group of girls. We're all (except my sister!) fresh out of college, working in our first jobs, all newly married or engaged. Julia's in it too, for fun and she fits in great. I don't know--it's a great escape.

Maybe part of why I like it, too, is because I only knew one of the girls before we started the book club. So I've gotten to know these girls and it's just fun. Plus I've read several really good books I wouldn't have otherwise read. I reccommend "The Lovely Bones" and "Wicked". Though "Wicked" is very odd, and a little inappropriate at times! And I'm pretty sure I'll be reccommending "Memoirs" as well.

Work is crazy. I started working on the new client projects this week and I'm already overwhelmed. The trip is going to be fine (I get to come home for several days in the middle!!!!). But there's a lot of pressure to really show my stuff, so it's overwhelming.

John and I are not even mentally prepared for our time apart. I guess my philosophy is that I'll cross that bridge when I get there. I leave Tuesday--I guess I'm there! But he's so excited about his trip and proud of me for my opportunity--I know it will be fine.

Easton turns 10 on Monday. We're going to Shogun's for his family party--big time! He's growing his hair long like the other kids in school and it's finally out of that awkward phase and starting to look pretty good. Mason is cute as ever--he'll be five next month!

Not much else--we saw "The Producers" in the theatre the other day. Hilarious!! A little outrageous, and a little gay but very funny.

Also--tried two new restaurants. Well, kind of. We highly reccommend Emerson Bigguns on Memorial Rd. If you go--get a burger. The burgers are AWESOME! Also, we tried to eat at Baker St. Grill the other day (by Red Lobster) and they are strictly 21 and over. It was really smoky and we couldn't take the kids in, so we left. Maybe they have good food, but we won't eat there. Not our kind of place.

Ok--really signing off now. I'll try to post before I leave. I'm off work on Monday, so that's a nice treat!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Sooner Born, Sooner Bred, and still hate Texas

I wore a "Beat Texas" shirt last night. The only reason I didn't also wear a "Beat USC" shirt is because I didn't have one.

There are a few reasons why last night's game turned out better than I thought it would:
1) Everyone can stop worrying about USC breaking OU's win streak (gotta tell you--it was getting annoying)
2) Everyone can stop talking about how USC is the best team of all time....guess not
3) Vince Young will probably go pro now (he'd be stupid not to)
4) It just makes OU look that much better when we kick their butts next year on our road back to dominance

All the BCS games turned out to be GREAT this year. Down-to-the-wire, upset-friendly, and no blowouts. I was pretty pleased with the entire Bowl Season.

Boomer Sooner, Everyone!