Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Bowling for Soup in Colorado Springs!

Bowling for Soup is coming back to the Springs!!!
The last time I saw them play was 2005 in Denton. It was a totally last minute thing - a friend called and told me they were playing at the Rockin' Rodeo which was within walking distance of my college apartment. The cover was only $10 or $11 bucks, which was a relief to me because I always thought concerts were expensive. But it was Bowling for Soup, and they were playing their "homecoming" concert! (They attended North Texas and try to go back as often as they can). It...was...AWESOME!!!

At some point in the last 3 years I've lived here, they came and played at a bar downtown. But at that time I didn't really know anyone here, let alone anyone who knew who they were. Plus, it was the type of bar that you don't go to alone. So I missed it.

But this time - I'm going to go! They're playing at Fort Carson, which is next door to my apartment complex. So I have no excuse! And this time - I know more people and I'm going to try my darndest to find someone to go with me and if I can't - I will go on my own!!!

Hump-Day Update

That almost rhymes!

So I finally got my new phone - and boy is it orange!! BURNT orange! My brother would be proud!!

It has rained almost every day for the last month or so. I always thought the weather in Dallas was unpredictable and bizarre. I apparently had never lived in Colorado Springs.

I love snow, so I am of course thrilled during the winter months when it randomly snows, and snows for hours, much to the chagrin of my co-workers. However, it doesn’t seem normal, or it didn’t before 3 years ago, for it to snow through late May and early June. But apparently that’s an annual occurrence in the Springs.

Once Spring hits, you have a few weeks of nice weather in the 70’s and 80’s, but you better enjoy it. Once Summer hits, you get a nice day or two maybe in a row, with rainstorms in the afternoon and evening that you could set your clock by. Wonder what time it is? Check the storm clouds. If a system is moving in, it’s 2 pm. If it’s just ending, it’s 3 pm. Then in mid to late summer, you better be prepared to not make any plans past 1 pm or on the weekends, because that’s “rainy season”.

Case in point: The Broadmoor has a webcam attached to the top of the building I work in, aimed at the main entrance of the hotel, so guests can always see what’s going on. I have no windows in my office, so since my desk is aimed the direction the camera is aimed, in theory, the webcam is like my window. I check it every now and then to see how the rain is looking. Here is the activity from this afternoon:

3:15 pm:

3:45 pm:
In just 30 minutes it went from a downpour to nice and sunny. And then again when I left at 5 pm, nice and sunny at 5:45 pm, and now (6:30 pm) the thunder is rolling again! The mountains are also so cloudy they look like snow clouds!

At least it’s not 105 degrees. I don’t know if I’m ready for that again!! I just love the rain!!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Right now, I have a Blackberry Pearl through Sprint, and it is not functioning properly.  First of all, it takes FOREVER to load – like a computer.  I understand that BlackBerries are essentially hand-held computers, but it pulls up the spinning hour glass when I “wake” it up from sleep mode/try to open my contact list/take a picture, etc. And that shouldn’t happen.  I’m also afraid that the little scroll part on the front is minutes away from falling off, because it’s very loose.  Any BlackBerry owner will tell you if your scroll-ball isn’t working, you might as well not have a BlackBerry, because that’s the driving force behind its features.  It also has a well-known glitch to where, without any notice, it erases my call logs and my message logs – just “poof!”, gone.
It also has a weird habit of pulling up a blank white screen with a teeny-tiny warning message in the middle of the screen, which is a problem of the phone.  I’ve already gotten a free replacement out of it because Sprint (or BlackBerry?) is aware of the problem.  And to top it all off - it’s kind of beat up because I drop it a lot (oops!).  Which might explain all the technical problems??  Maybe.
But - YAY for good things!!!  I did some research on the Sprint website, and I am eligible through Sprint for a $150 rebate on a new phone if I sign up for a new 2 year contract.  So I thought, bummer, because if I have time left on my current contract, that would just be stupid to renew my contract and just start all over right in the middle of my current one.  I checked my account for my renewal date, and found out I was about a month away from my current contract expiring anyway. 
So I went ahead and “bit the bullet” and upgraded my phone! 
I am able to get a better *newer* Blackberry but get this – it’s going to be ORANGE!  They actually call it “Inferno”.  It’s a Curve, so it has a wider screen and a full “QWERTY” keyboard so I don’t have to double-tap on my phone to get certain letters.  Yay!  I should be getting it within 2-5 business days, so hopefully by this time next week!  I figure, I’m a girl and I’m fun, right?  So why not go “crazy” and get the non-traditional color?  In any case, if I don’t like it or get sick of it, I can always either buy a case of a different color to go on the outside, or they actually sell the “shell” of the phone in different colors and designs. 
But I think I’ll like it!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Into the Wild

So apparently I’m the only one in the entire world who has never read “Into the Wild”, by Jon Krakauer. I started describing this really “cool book” to Justin, and how I think he’ll like it, and he interrupts me and says, “what, like Into the Wild or something?”. And excitedly I said “Yes!”. Then I get this look of shock as he says, “how could you never have read Into the Wild?”

At my work, we have a “library” for our employees, where they can come and take books home. Yesterday, an employee returned “Into the Wild”, and since I love to read, I read the back cover of the book while it was on my desk waiting to be put back and was intrigued.

Despite Justin’s reaction, it’s not hard to see why I’ve never read the book. I wasn’t ever really into non-fiction (before college), and I definitely wasn’t about to read about hiking or camping or the wilderness. It also wasn’t a reading requirement in school for me, and after reading the book, I can see why some schools wouldn’t add it to their curriculum. It does talk about living a “vagrant” or responsibility-free life, with money, jobs, and titles all as meaningless labels. It also discusses the story of a man who decides, with little to no survivor experience and with not near enough supplies or food, to venture into the Alaskan wilderness, assuming that he knows what he needs to survive. He is found 4 months later dead in an abandoned transit bus. He did this alone, and all by choice. And he wasn’t mentally insane either.

I interpreted the cover as I was reading it as it being a story about a man’s body being found in the woods, and that it would be discussing how he got there and the investigation that followed. This hit on my Criminal Justice “nerve”. But the book goes into much more detail about his life than I thought, and about the lives of the people he met during his travels. It also goes into great detail about this man’s philosophy of life and nature, and why he would “do something like this”. The author also weaves stories from his own life that he feels really connect him with this unfortunate traveler he’s writing about.

The author also states, in not so many words, that people will read his book or hear this story and form their own opinion; either they’ll think “what he did was amazing and brave”, or “he’s completely stupid and deserved what he got”. To be perfectly honest, I am developing my own opinion. But I’m still on the fence. And I may never fully decide how I feel.

Either way, it’s still a very intriguing book, and although I had never picked it up before yesterday, I’m glad that I finally read it. (And for those of you keeping track, I picked up the book yesterday after someone returned it, and I finished it today at lunch. That’s less than 24 hours – and no, I’m not joking. It really IS that interesting!) I think the biggest reason why I read it, and read it so quickly was because I can’t fathom, in my mind, someone who is educated, reasonable, and considerably well off doing something like this. The opinions I form will definitely get me thinking. But no worries – I don’t plan on selling all my possessions and picking up and moving to Alaska anytime soon!

I’m also still going through “Augustus”, by Tom Everett, and it’s still interesting every time I pick it up. I’ve decided I love reading too much to keep putting it off each night – so I’m making it a goal of mine to read a minimum of 30 minutes a night, no matter what. Then I’ll be able to document thoughts and opinions and offer suggestions to anyone who may read this on here! Maybe not so much to the interest of any readers, but more so as documentation for me to look back on.

A blog that I follow has a completely separate blog on the books that she’s reading – I kind of want to start that, to keep me accountable for my reading and to share books with others, and to also get good recommendations. In that case, I may get rid of Bailey’s blog, since I talk about him on here anyway, and hardly update that one!!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

4th of July Festivities

I think I had one of the best 4th of July's that I've had in a while!! Surrounded by great friends and family, everyone made it better than I expected. And I ate enough BBQ to last me until next year!

There was a wedding for a co-worker at the Flying W Ranch, which was a GREAT Old Western type of ranch, and there was wonderful food, and of course the bride was beatiful and tears were shed.

Patsy, me, Heather:

The groom and bride, Mike and Kari:

Me and Heather on our way out...we had to take some "spontaneous" photos:

If you see me, turn me in:

Then, Justin and I went to my parents for a BBQ and some fireworks. 2 of my co-workers and their boyfriend/husband came over to celebrate with us! The day was spent trying to dodge the rain, great food, and great conversation! It was nice to be able to spend that time with family and friends at the same time! It ended with breaking a TON of glow in the dark sticks for my two nieces (ok - and me too!) to help us find the way to the perfect fireworks spot. I even got Bailey into the spirit and put a glow in the dark collar on him!

Susan (sister), Justin, Neil, Heather, Kristin and Adam in the backyard:

Emma and Sophia!:

Byron and Susan with their newest addition, Owen, at 4 months old:
Everyone in the kitchen hanging out...

Emma wanted to take this picture "for Mr. Justin": (totally her idea!!!)

Let the fireworks begin! (Here's only a few of them):