Blog Archives

Roomba Always on My Mind

One thing I noticed about this time of year is how a week ago, I was staring at the beautiful treasure at The Chicago Botanic Garden and now I see people tossing out their trees. Life keeps rolling on.  But I digress.

Splendid calm at the Chicago Botanic Garden

Splendid calm at the Chicago Botanic Garden

I was pretty quiet in 2015 and it was for a good reason because I was making many positive changes – the most impressive being that I am now employed at a place I love and have wanted to work for years.  I really enjoy my job and delight in my 1 mile and 1/2 jaunt to work! Not only do I get to wear purple – it is encouraged!  My quality of life in the last year has increased beyond my wildest expectations.

One of my favorite distractions has been learning how to play the guitar at my weekly guitar lesson down the street. It is quite the joy to be able to leave at 1:57 for a 2:00 lesson.  Over the past year, I have almost lost my prized purple pick more than a few times to which my teacher, Dan, can confirm.  Something happens when I leave my lesson and I think I am putting the pick in my pocket and I can never find it; but then I get home and it somehow finds it way on the floor of my walk-in closet.  While there are many more purple picks that can be purchased to replace that one, I have to have THAT one.  One week, my pick didn’t reappear before my next lesson and I showed up, dejected.  I walked in to see my smiling teacher holding my purple pick!   You would think he had given me a million dollars; it was a relief to be reunited with my pick!

My musical world kept in tune with my purple pick, tuner, and guitar, of course.

My musical world kept in tune with my purple pick, tuner, and guitar, of course.

We have worked on many songs and although I have been partial to Elvis Presley and Patsy Cline,  I am exploring other artists now because I like to do mash-ups of various songs and improvise some melody mixed in within the chords. Per Dan’s observation, a break-through moment was working on “Always On My Mind“.  It just flows for me, and I can easily connect with the song and not think when I play it. It gives me peace.

When I went to visit my brother and his family for Thanksgiving, I noticed a whirling circular object floating on the floor.  It was the robot-like vacuum cleaner Roomba.  While I had heard of it, I never thought I could afford one.  Sure enough, it was on sale at Costco so I bought it as soon as I got home.  My world has changed with Roomba!  I guess you are supposed to name it, but I haven’t gotten around to it and I digress, once again. Read the rest of this entry

Saving Daylight

I was a little thrown off last weekend because one of my friends sent me an email saying it was time to lose an hour.  Fortunately, I totally forgot what she had said and didn’t do it.  I went to work and about two hours into the day, I screamed to my neighbor…”Was I late?!”

Fast forward, or should I say “spring forward” to last night/this morning. I still get confused between spring back/fall forward – whatever. Thankfully, my electronic gadgets tell me what time it is.

There I am, staring at my cell phone at 1:59am, glazing over email word play while telling my sinus head attack to go from where it came.

I said, this is the year, I am going to see my hour get taken right in front of me.  I realize this can probably happen if I drive through the state of Indiana but this way is much more convenient and safer than staring at my phone while driving.

In an instant, Read the rest of this entry

Sweetness Withdrawal

Perhaps it’s due to my sweetness withdrawal, but many things that aren’t considered quintessential food are now looking like food. For example, on one of my recent walks, I noticed these pretty tiger lilies in the front of someone’s house.

Peach Slice Surprise – Are Those Blueberries on the Left?

But I didn’t see that, I saw Read the rest of this entry

This is one of my earlier posts that you may have missed the first time. Call it “fashion re-education”.

Rein Rant N' Rave

Color MeCalm

In the winter of 2007, I had a close friend of mine from college, pass away. Back in college, Heidi made it very clear that her favorite color was red. She had a red folding chair in her residence hall room, always wore red in some part of her wardrobe and was beyond passionate about Indiana University.  In fact, she almost transferred to IU for junior year, but thankfully for us, she stayed.

Her husband asked that we wear red at her funeral to pay homage to her.  I thought that was such an amazing idea.  While red is definitely not my best color, at least I don’t think so, I found what I could and even had a  bright red bag.  When I got to the service, there was red everywhere. It was beautiful. Heidi would have been thrilled.

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Driving Karma

I have to admit I am really impressed by truck drivers. They have to drive that big rig and not hit us little people driving smaller vehicles.

I was picking up some sinus medicine and a truck driver was trying to back into a stall in a corporate business park. I pulled to the right and stayed back as to not apply pressure.

Understand, I applaud my fellow drivers who parallel park with ease. I don’t like being crowded as I attempt to fit my car in a spot that can fit three. So I really appreciate the skill this truck driver has to get this truck in that space. I am amazed when they are  just taking turns going forward!

This impatient driver behind me barrels past me but first stops and glares at me as if to say, Read the rest of this entry

Facebook Groups: aka Chaotic Conversation

Facebook has replaced the need for most reunion planning companies, yet it seems to be undermining the efforts of reunion planning via their incredibly user-UNfriendly group pages.  

Do you ever get frustrated with the way topics and thoughts can get lost in the new Facebook group format?  Photos and comments keep bouncing up and down the page as people look at each post. It is great that people are so passionate about expressing their thoughts and they should not be prevented from doing so, but the irony is that the end result is people aren’t being heard. Read the rest of this entry

2011 Greatest Hits

Here we are on day 2 of 2012.  Here are  some positive takeaways from 2011, in no particular order:

  • My dad earned two different professor of the year awards!
  • My great-uncle turned 98!
  • I rode 56 miles on my bicycle on 9/11…for fun! 
  • I spent lots of quality time in the gym. Thankfully, it is only a few blocks away.
  • I planned and executed a successful and very enjoyable high school reunion…with my two co-pilots.
  • I re-connected with much-missed chums from grade school!  From high school, too!
  • I am employed. 
  • I totally missed the 11-11-11 connection with “This is Spinal Tap.”  I was already fascinated with 11-1-11!  Today is 1-2-12, where is the ticker tape parade for that? 😉 
  • I had a makeover. Under duress, a friend from work dragged me to the makeup chair at lunch.  Okay, the eyeliner is pretty awesome and who knew you could do that cool thing with brows.
  • My blog debuted in March and finally took off and won an award! 
  • While looking for stamps in a drawer, I found an old traveler’s cheque worth $100 and a stash of gift cards that I had forgotten about!
  • I bought a Nook, thanks to that traveler’s cheque, and have already borrowed some books from the library on it. 
  • Facebook: you pick me up and put me back down!

What Do Kids Think, Anyway? 

  • My nephew and I were sitting at the table in the kitchen. I was a bit distracted. He looked at me and asked, “What’s on your mind?” I was impressed with his depth but didn’t answer.  He attempted again, “Why are you being so quiet?” Embarrassed, I laughed and he finished with, “What is wrong?”  I can only imagine what thoughts will emerge when he turns four!  How wonderful if all adults were that perceptive!
  • I saw my six-year-old niece and was about to give her a big hug. She ordered, “Don’t tickle me.”  I walked away and said, “Okay”.  She ran up to me and said, “No, when I say don’t tickle me; that means I want you to tickle me.” 

2011 had some great moments, no doubt.  

However, in the bigger picture, it was a test for everyone.  

2012 HAS to be better for ALL of us. 

Happy New Year!





It Wasn’t Your Time

Last week was the two-year anniversary of “Celebrate Lauren Day”.  An unlicensed driver in oncoming traffic, going 55 miles per hour, decided to turn in front of me, despite the fact that I had the green light to go straight.  I really thought this was the end.

The smacking sounding of the collision was deafening –  followed by the SILENCE that happened right after.  I slowly opened my eyes, scared what I would see. Read the rest of this entry

Are You Half Cloudy or Half Blue Sky?

Cloudy or Blue Sky?

I took this photo while on my lunch break today. I had already started the car but I looked up and was completely smitten with what was in front of me and just took the view in for a few minutes. This moment was right before the sun popped out.  It brings about some questions.

  • Is your mindset half cloudy or half blue sky?
  • Do you see a question mark or a 3?

I saw the blue sky trying to break through the shades of gray. However, how can one not appreciate the fascinating glow show that the clouds provide?

As far as the question mark or a 3.  I, myself, am full of questions right now with many facets of my life.  The economy, my work situation, my friend and foe situation, customer service experiences, you name it:  I have questions!   Read the rest of this entry

Batting Practice

Need a good laugh? My 3-year-old nephew just learned about bats and that they sleep upside down.  Riveted, he took it to heart and promptly went to bed to imagine  the life of a slumbering bat. Needless to say, he is a quick study. Read the rest of this entry

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