Sunday, March 25, 2007

Free Fun!!!

Despite the fog last night, I made a late night trip to Indy to meet up with Ryan and several friends of ours to see a concert....imagine that :-)

I had to work until 11:00, so I knew I'd be catching only the last half of the show, but it was free, and I knew they'd play until about 2:00, so I figured I might as well go join the fun. I got there late....but I was there!!!

We went to see a band called One Under. Two of the members are former members of Ekoostik Hookah. That's how they hooked us. Ed Mcgee, the lead singer, used to write many of the songs for E.H. They don't play those songs anymore...because in a sense, they belong to Ed. So, seeing One Under is nice for those of us who miss those old "Ed songs."

When I first walked in, I was worried, because I didn't see any bongo drums or percussion instruments set up. My first thought was "Oh no!! Johnny has left us again!!!" But, come to find out, he wasn't there because his baby daughter was just born yesterday. OK Johnny, I guess we'll let this one slide :-)

I will always claim Ekoostik Hookah as my favorite, but it's really nice to go see another good jamband...especially a band who plays a lot of free shows!!!

In the middle of the show, the guitarist just rushed off the stage after one of their songs, and never came back. My guess is that he got sick or something. Who knows, but the show must go on...and Ed Mcgee has never been accused of not being able to hold his own when it comes to putting on a good show. I personally thought it was a great show even though we were missing two band members.

I wouldn't really miss the guitarist if he were gone for good ( Not to sound rude) because in my mind, there will NEVER be another Steve Sweney (EH's guitarist,) and I'm used to hearing Steve playing guitar on a lot of those songs. There's no comparing him to anyone out there right now....and no one will ever be able to fill his shoes in my eyes. I guess I should lay off and give the guy a chance, but I'm just sayin'....there WILL NEVER be another Sweney.....(Kellyanne, you understand)

After the show, we stayed with our friends Matt and Liz. Kellyanne and her husband, Dave, came over too. We had a lot of fun. I got to hang out by my first bonfire for the year!!! You guys know how I love to burn stuff!! (I'm not a pyromaniac...I promise) But, I've been known to burn a couch or two in my time :-) We also played a game of Apples to Apples. It is so much fun. I HAVE to bring it for the next family'll make you laugh until your cheeks hurt!!

I was a lazy little girl when it came to getting up this morning for breakfast. I feel kinda bad for missing out on that, but I didn't make it to bed until after 5:00 AM, and they were all ready to go at about 10:00....No Way...No How!!!! I asked Ryan if he was crazy when he asked me if I was getting up to go with them. I am glad that I slept in a little though, because work hasn't been nearlly as bad as it could've been had I been half asleep all day.

Anyway...just wanted to share some pics with everyone.....

Here's Kellyanne and me and Liz.....don't they both have the most gorgeous blue eyes?!?!?

This is our buddy Jamie....he just got his head shaved for his job....he's been a guard up at Grissom for awhile, and just got promoted to a lieutenant, and decided he needed to shave his head to look tough....crazy boy!!!!

This is my friend TeShannah.....she lives two apartments down from cousin when I visit one, I visit them all!!
Then, there's my baby with his beer by the fire....I don't think he could've been much happier at that point :-)

Thanks to Matt and Liz for putting us up for the night!!! It's always a great time!!!!

Yeah Spring!!!!

My first little daffodil popped out today......isn't she beautiful?!?!?

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Kickball Rocks!!!!

As mentioned in an earlier post, Ryan and I have joined a kickball league in St. Louis. Now, I know you're all thinking....St louis? Why the heck are they on a league in St. Louis....well, first of all, we have several great friends who live there, second of all, where else is there actually a league for kickball??? I haven't found one closer yet!!!
I think everyone knows we love to travel...even if it is just a four hour drive to St L for a couple games every Sunday. I have my first two games coming up next weekend....April Fool's Day. Ryan has made it to St L already and had the experience of playing an actual game, but I had other plans with Ekoostik Hookah when he went. So, next weekend should be interesting.
So far, our team is 0-6....yes, we have yet to win a game, but it sure sounds like everyone on the team has been having fun so or lose.
I will definitely be taking my camera with me for my first game, so hopefully I'll have some fun pictures to share soon. It sounds like it gets a little crazy sometimes. But, crazy in a good way :-)
I still have to review the rule book before I can play. I guess there are a couple weird rules that our team failed to read about before their first game, and we were all recommended by the refs and the umpire to refresh ourselves...he he he :-)
It doesn't seem like something that most people who are playing take too seriously. Of course, everyone wants to win, but I think there a re a lot of fun people there mainly just to have a good time. Some of the names of the teams are hilarious...just a few examples:
-A Team Named Sue
-Ball Busters
-Drinkers With A Kickball Problem
-Fear My Balls
-Kickin' Chicken
-Runs With Scissors
-Thunder Thighs
-Weapons of Grass Destruction
So, rather than try to describe it sincerely, I'll just paste a little piece from their website, which is incase anyone wants to take a peek.........
The creation of the St. Louis Kickball Association (SKA) got its start in late summer 2000 when a group of friends decided to create a permanent adult recreation kickball league in St. Louis.

Following the group’s participation in the annual Albers, Illinois Labor Day weekend Tournament, the group decided that kickball was too fun to only participate once a year.

So with that mind, the group, now the Executive Committee, created the St. Louis Kickball Association.

Sick of deadlines, conference calls, network problems? Do you wish you could return to the simpler times of elementary school when your biggest problems were whether you had cooties or if you were going to be picked last?

Do you long for the day when your problems were solved with 'rock, paper, scissors?' Well here's your big chance to relive the magic of preadolescence, without the threat of punishment from your parents and teachers.

Picture a warm fall (or spring) Sunday afternoon with the smell of mowed grass, drying leaves, and yes that big red rubber ball in the background. Wouldn’t you like to go back to those days, even for a few hours?
Doesn't it sound great, the way they've worded it???? I ALWAYS want to relive the magic of my preadolescence days.....who doesn't?!?!?

Rain, rain, rain

For some reason, I just can't get this song out of my head this week:

Rain ( by the Grateful Dead)

Here I am, on the lam ready to go
Brighter days have hurried me along, nobody's wrong
Love stays the same a heart's not to blame nothing is over
Now it don't worry me at all there's just got to be

Some kind of overflow nobody falls
People, we cry, when wells go dry it threatens tomorrow
Try and find some ways to ease the fright burn into the night
But maybe a little rain would soothe the pain and drown our sorrows

And looking straight at all that lives again
Until we get our fill of overflows, nobody knows
In search of love, the seasons above have taken to wander
Unlike the ones we used to know, where did they go?

Well, here I am, on the lam, low overflow
Brighter days have hurried me along
To see the rain come shinning through, nobody's blue
Oh seagull, tis an hour of plight

Energy from your wing helps bring the rain
Call on your brotherhood of flight and let it rain all nights
Oh sky lookin clear and bright, Moon, with your own true light
Turn the tides and rain all night, Turn the tides and rain all night.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Who's the Party Girl?!?!?

Ah yes...just returning from yet another fantastic weekend filled with Hookah memories.......

Friday I headed up to Grand Rapids, MI for a show I had been planning on going to for quite awhile now. My friend Kelly Jo let me and my friend Julie stay at her house for the night. She lives just outside of Grand Rapids.

We had an awesome time Friday night. Kelly Jo and some of her friends are vendors at a lot of the festivals we go to. They all make their own clothes, and make all kinds of fun stuff to sell. Kelly's friend Jenny, is making tails now..yes tails, so I sported a tail all night along with my little green pom poms on my head. At one point when I was talking to Eric ( My MAN!!!) he told me I had a nice tail...hehehe it made me laugh...but then again, I think the guy walks on water, so what else was I gonna do???

Anyway, the tails made for a lot of interesting conversation, and made it really easy to find eachother if we got separated.

Julie and I made it up there in just enough time for Kelly Jo to round up the rest of the gang, and off we went. The show was absolutely rockin'!!! I was so happy all night. It seemed like the songs would never end. They played one song right after another that I wanted to hear. When we saw Eric at the set break, he asked what the tails and the pom poms were all about. I told him we were the "party girls"...there were about ten of us with pom poms and tails. They have a song called "Party Girl," and I always like to think they are playing it for me, or at least with me in mind at the shows where we see eachother.. ( do I sound like I'm in Highschool....sorry if I do...) So, when we were talking to Eric about being the party girls, I told him we needed to hear that song...that I needed to hear that song. He gave us a hug, and was on his fact, he was a little late getting to the stage because of us....sorry Eric!!! They already had the lights off when he made his way to the back of the drumset. Oops!!!!!!

So, into the second set we go.....dancing our tails off!!! Sweating like a bunch of farmers, but smiling like little kids at Christmas....I couldn't have been much happpier!!!

We had aquired several sets of green beads (not the way some of you might be thinking...) and glitter for St. Patty's Day (Even though it was the next day) so we threw some beads up to Cliffy. First, he put them on and we were happy, then he took them off and started playing his bass with them during some real trippy part of one of their was crazy. It sounded like some psychedlic rock right out of the 70's....I loved it!!!

One of the things I love best about seeing Ekoostik Hookah is that you will rarely hear the same song in a few nights time. No two sets or shows will ever be exactly the same, and sometimes, you'll even catch the guys arguing over which song they want to play next. Just when I thought the second set was about to end, Eric stood up and pointed to me. He said "This is for you Alli!!" And next thing I know, they're playing "Party Girl" WOOOO HOOOOOOO.....Eric told me at the end of the night that they played it just for all us party girls!!!

Then......OMG they closed the show with "Comfortably Numb." I just about freaked out!!! I've been watching this David Gilmour DVD at home fore the last few weeks, and that is the song I keep watching over and over puts me in a trance or something...and my favorite band covered it....Wow.....I'm a happy little girl right now!!!!

After the show, we hung out at the venue for awhile trying to get a peek at the boys. When I was about to give up and walk out, Eric came flying out from behind stage with a broken drum stick in his hand saying..."WAIT.....Alli, I have something for you!!!!" So, I now have a couple of Eric's drumsticks....he only gives them to me when he breaks them....apparently, they're pretty expensive. I only know that because I tried to get one Saturday night too, and he explained it then. OK, I guess I'll have to be happy with just the couple I already have.

When we got back to Kelly Jo's house, I finally cracked my bottle of wine that had been waiting all night. I was the designated driver, as usual, so I had to wait to get someplace safe before MY drinking began. We hung out and listened to her friend Johnny play the guitar. All of us girls were up nearly all night dancing and shaking our tails in Kelly Jo's living room......we're all so silly!!! It was a blast!!
This is Kelly Jo and I wrapped up in eachothers tails.........

On the way home Saturday, I was wishing that my Hookah trip wasn't over for the weekend already. There was another show coming up....their St. Patty's Day Covington, KY Saturday night. I kept thinkging to myself there was no way in hell I was going to be able to go. I was supposed to be on call for work. I told Julie that if, by some miracle, someone felt really sorry for me, maybe I could go, but that was a long shot. I decided that wasn't going to happen, but at almost the same time, I decided I WAS GOING to this show.....they're only three hours could I pass this up.

Knowing that I looked like total crap, I walked into ER only to hear a Dr. say, "Allison, you look terrible, are you sick?" Oh yes....I was so sick that I just couldn't work Saturday night...there was no way. So, within a few minutes, I left the ER with a dr's note saying I couldn't work until Monday. You know what that we come!!!

I talked my Julie into going with me. But I would have gone alone if she couldn't have gone. I knew Kellyanne and her Hubby, Dave would be there, and even if there wasn't anyone Iknew personally, there's always familiar faces, and a happy crowd. I would've gone either way.

So, after a couple hours of getting cleaned up and running some errands, I was off to pick up Julie and hit the road again. We left town at about 7:00 Saturday night. The show started at 10:00...we missed the first song, but we still did pretty good on time. I ran to the front to make myself known right away. It wasn't hard to get anyone's attention, because I was wearing a bright green fuzzy hat....which was a re-gift from Christmas...and now Cliffy has it. I tossed it to him during second set. I knew he'd put it on...he's always a lot of fun like that. He also asked us for some green beads to play his bass with again...that was just as fun as seeing it the night before!!

Here's Cliffy playing with our green beads..........

We found Kellyanne and Dave pretty soon after we got there. They were right up front, just like I thought :-) I got a few pictures, but not very many that turned out well...we'll have to see what I can dig up. I did get a good one of me and her, and her green bear :-)

When we got to set break, we were all just hanging around our spots up front and watching the guys mingling with the crowd, when all of a sudden, we hear this loud announcement over head saying "Everyone must exit the building immediately!!!" The fire alarm was going off!! CRAP!!!! I grabbed my camera, my coat, and my purse, and decided now was a good time to use those EXIT signs that are by the back of the stage.....good got us right out back in the alley with the band. There weren't a whole lot of people back there, so that gave Kellyanne the chance to play paparazzi!!! That's what we kept calling her all night :-) She got pictures of herself with every single band member. I kinda forgot about my camera, because I was just hanging out with them like they were my buddies.....after seeing Kellyanne's pictures, I wish I would've thought about it!!

At one point, Kellyanne grabbed me and pulled me down to the other side of the building. Cliffy had pulled out his banjo, which we don't get to hear much, and started playing a little for us in the alley. It was awesome!!! I got a picture of Kellyanne with him holding his banjo, but you couldn't see it. She's got some great pictures from the show on her'll have to check them out!!! I did steel a couple....Hope you don't care Kelly!!!!

The set break ended up lasting about twenty minutes longer than we had hoped, so we actually lost a couple songs out of the deal. However, you don't often get the chance to sit with Cliff playing the banjo in that close of a was worth sacrificing a couple songs. It seemed like the second set was very short, but looking back at the setlist, it wasn't bad....we just got spoiled the night before.....that setlist was enormous!!!!

I was very excited to hear "Party Girl" again....they hardly ever play a song two nights in a row...I was extatic!! Also, during the second set, I tossed my green St. Patty's Day hat up to Cliff...I knew he'd put it on...he's a good sport that way. I couldn't have chosen a better time to throw it either, because they were just beginning to play "The Irish Ballad," so the hat went very well with the song. He wore it the rest of the show....I thought I might get it back, but I didn''s OK though....I could never be mad at Cliffy!!!

We shook our tails off again, and before we knew it, it was time to head back to good ol' Indiana. Julie and I did get a chance to talk to most of the guys after the show was over. I talked to Steve Sweney and finally got to ask him if he for sure got that copy of the picture I had him sign a couple weeks ago. I told him I just wanted to make sure because it went through several different hands before it got to his. I just wanted to make sure, and I was very happy to see his face light up when he figured out what picture I was talking about. He wanted to know again who had taken it. (Ryan, of course) And just gave me a huge smile after he realized what picture it was....a huge smile coming from Sweney says a lot!!!

It was a long ride home, but it only seemed like a couple hours. Julie stayed awake with me the whole way. We stopped and ate at one of those little greasy Waffle Houses...I love those little dives off the highway!!! We stuffed ourselves with some breakfast, and hit the road again. It was probably about 2:30 am by this time. We made it home by 4:30 or 5:00 we were only gone for about ten hours.....that's less than one shift at work for me.

When I got home, the last thing I could think about was sleep. I sat down and wrote a letter to Clint telling him all about my weekend. It ended up being five pages long...front and back :-) Then, I wrote down as many songs from the setlists as I could remember, and wrote the little things that happened, like getting Eric's drumstick, and cliffy wearing my hat. It makes it much easier to differenciate between shows when you have little details like that to fall back on.

After about 14 hours sleep Sunday, I was all set to go and feed my baby who was returning home from St. Louis. He had a kickball game on Sunday...yes, we're on a kickball league in St.Louis...but that's a whole different blog!!!

Friday, March 16, 2007

I'm off to Grand Rapids Michigan for another Ekoostik Hookah show. The CD in my player for the first couple hours of my trip will be Loretta Lynn's "Van Lear Rose." Jack White from the White Stripes produced it, and does a great duet with her.
I think I remember Andrea mentioning this CD when it first came's very "rocker" for Loretty :-) I can definitely hear Jack White's touch in all the songs. My favorite song so far is about a pair of little red shoes. Loretty just tells a story about how her mommy stole her some little red shoes one day because she thought little ol' Loretty was a'dyin'....and she just talks through the whole story with a really cool beat behind her.....if you haven't heard it, it's worth checking out. I can't help but love the old country folks.......

Thursday, March 15, 2007

obsess much????

OK, Everybody remember Brad...yeah, my high school boyfriend. We don't talk much, but uh, I don't think we'll be talking at all now. Here's my latest e-mail from him.

just mailed to say fuck you fair weather friend. i have called. talked to your boyfriend. no answer. sorry if i am sommering but i dont need you. leave me alone trash. u can only talk 2 me every couple of months. i dont need this shit. have a good life. brad

Guess I AM the hardest person I know to get ahold of.................

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Another Happy Tail..............

My latest foster dog, Mitzi went to be with her new forever family today. I think she will be very happy there....but I miss her already.

This is puppy number four that we have helped save. I'm getting another bealge tomorrow. I'll have to get some pictures posted when I get him.

Bye Bye, Mitzi Girl!!! We love you!!!!

My baby in pigtails.....

I LOVE my baby's chocolate locks.....He has better pigtails than any girl I know!!!!!

Monday, March 12, 2007

Let your Soul Shine!!!!!

Not too long ago, we had a big knock-down drag-out at work. It was basically day shift against night shift......and I hate it that we're fighting.

I love the people I work with......most of the time. Unfortunately, it seems like everyone, including myself has forgotten why we're here.

We're here for our patients. It's actually very simple, and if people could always keep focused on that fact, I think we would all get a long a lot better.

It has gotten to the point where everyone is worried about everyone else's business. People are always comparing their work to everyone else's work, or they're worried that they're working harder than everyone else. It's not normally that way, but it has become that way because people are now seeking revenge over the people they don't think are working as hard.

What it really boils down to is: if everyone is looking out for the patients' best interest, these problems will go away. It's obviously not in the patient's best interest to let them sit and wait on another tech to come along just because they have a test ordered that you have already done that day. There is no quota on the amount of chest x-rays each tech can or should do in a day. We can't stop doing chest x-rays just because we've already done 15 today.......but that's what has been happening.

It's really hard and sad for me to see our department like this. I have always prided myself in saying that our x-ray department had wonderful people who work so well together, and I consider everyone I work with my friends. I honestly can't say that anymore. There are several people in the department now that I would never be caught dead with outside of this place. AND I WON'T do patients with them because I don't want my name attached to anything they do. Isn't that sad?

So, anyway, after the big fight, and a meeting with our boss, I have decided to try to come to work with a better attitude. At first, I was just pissed because I felt like the day shift was attacking us. It seemed like they were blaming every single problem in the department on the night shift. In all reality, it's all of us. After a couple days of coming in and not talking to half the department, I decided that I would be the adult here and take it upon myself to improve anything I could. I thought maybe if I improved some things with myself, maybe that would set a good example for everyone else. We all have room for improvement, and it takes a little effort on everyone's part to make those changes. That's where I am with everything in my own heart and head right now.

I know everyone has issues that they deal with every day that we may not know about. It's really hard sometimes not to bring your personal life into work with you. But, when you work in a hospital, and another person's well being is in your hands, you must put everything aside and do what's best for them. That's why most people chose this job to begin with. I love the fact that I play a part in helping people every day, and I don't want anything to get in my way, including my own slefishness, or my ego, or anything else for that matter!!

So, for the last couple weeks I have been listening to this song every day on my way into work. It's called "Soulshine" by the Allman Brothers. I think it's a great pick-me-up song. I just might have to bring it in for everyone to hear for themselves. Hearing it puts me in a great mood and frame of mind to come in and deal with the stressfull situations we're put in during our job every day. It might do all of us some good to try to live by these words............

When you can't find the light,
That got you through a cloudy day,
When the stars ain't shinin' bright,
You feel like you've lost you're way,

When those candle lights of home,
Burn so very far away,
Now you got to let your soul shine,
Just like my daddy used to say.

He used to say soulshine,
It's better than sunshine,
It's better than moonshine,
Damn sure better than rain.

Yeah now people don't mind,
We all get this way sometimes,
Got to let your soul shine,
shine till the break of day.

I grew up thinkin' that I had it made,
Gonna make it on my own.
Life can take the strongest man,
Make him feel so alone.

Now sometimes I feel a cold wind,
Blowin' through my achin' bones,
I think back to what my daddy said,
He said "Boy, in the darkness before the dawn:

"Let your soul shine,
It's better than sunshine,
It's better than moonshine,
Damn sure better than rain."

Yeah now people don't mind,
We all get this way sometimes,
Gotta let your soul shine,
shine till the break of day.

Sometimes a man can feel this emptiness,
Like a woman has robbed him of his very soul.
A woman too, God knows, she can feel like this.
And when your world seems cold,
you got to let your spirit take control.

Let your soul shine,
It's better than sunshine,
It's better than moonshine,
Damn sure better than rain.

Lord now people don't mind,
We all get this way sometimes,
Gotta let your soul shine,
shine till the break of day.

Oh, it's better than sunshine,
It's better than moonshine,
Damn sure better than rain.

Yeah now people don't mind,
We all get this way sometimes,
Gotta let your soul shine,
shine till the break of day.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Stranger in a Strange Land

Ryan bought me a gift certificate from Solutions for Christmas that has been continually put to use since then. He knows me so well, it's scary :-) The actual Christmas package they had was for a pedicure, a manicure, and a massage. Ryan told them that the pedicure and manicure would be a waste, because he just watched me bite all my nails off, and I hate for anyone to touch my feet....I don't even like to touch my own feet. So, he put together a little custom package for me with a hair cut and color, a spa facial, and a deep muscle massage. So far, I've managed to get two out of the three done.

I did the hair thing a couple weeks ago, and am now sporting a little auburn....I like it. Anyway, yesterday, I went in for my spa facial. I really didn't know exactly what that was except I knew there was steam involved to open up my pores. When I think of a facial, I think of makeup and pretty stuff.....but this was so much better!!

First, I walked in and gave my name to the sweet little guy named Brian at the front desk. He had the most beautiful blue earrings in, I couldn't quit staring at them, so maybe I just wasn't paying attention when he told me what to do, but I really think I was just clueless, because I've never had these kinds of luxuries before...I didn't know what I was doing.

Brian walked me upstairs and showed me to the dressing room. He pointed out the towels, the wraps, the robes, and the shower for when I was done in the spa if I wanted it. As he leaves the dressing room, I gather up a towel, a wrap, and a robe. I put everything on and walked out to the steam room. There were hooks on the outside of the spa to hang your robe on when you went in. At that point, it dawned on me......I really don't know what I'm doing here. I have this wrap on and this robe over it, but I can't figure out what I'm supposed to do with everything. I know I'm not supposed to be naked, and I didn't bring a swimsuit or anything, so what do I do about my boobs....I don't want to expose anyone....and surely that's not what they expected either. So, after standing outside the door drinking my water and trying to look like I know what's going on as people walk by, I finally realized I'm a total idiot, and this wrap thing is supposed to be up OVER my boobs.....he he he....OK, I guess I need to go back to the dressing room.

So, I get back in the dressing room, and to my amazement, this wrap thingy fits me much better when I have it up over the boobs, which apparently was where it should've been the whole time. Geez...I'm silly. But, I've already wasted a few minutes of my spa time, so I wanna get back out there. I hung my robe up and walked in with my body covered in this wrap.

It felt great whenI first walked in, but it didn't take me long to realize it was really hard to breathe. All I keep doing is inhaling this they want me to drown in here?!?! So, I walk out and get anouther drink of my water...then I decide, I can handle it, this is supposed to be relaxing. After sitting in there for a few more minutes, my hair is drenched, and I'm having trouble breathing again.....this time I think I'll go get a glass of wine.....yes, they serve FREE wine at Solutions WOOOOO HOOOOOO!!!!!! So, I walked out to get a glass of wine, and for the first time, I feel like I know what I'm doing. Believe me, I know how to enjoy a nice glass of wine.....even if it did come out of a box :-) Back to the steam room I go...........

After I couldn't take it anymore, and all my viens were about to pop out of my body, I finally stepped out and downed the rest of my water and wine. I'm literally dripping with sweat and steam in the middle of this hallway just chugging away.....but I'm really starting to enjoy myself at this point.

Just as I'm heading back towards the dressing room to get back in my own clothes, Amanda, the esthetician who is doing my facial stops me. She tells me I might want to keep the wrap on for the facial. I'm really confused at this point....why do I need to be half naked for a facial? OK, whatever, I was too hot to put my clothes back on anyway.

Amanda walked me into this really dark room with celtic music playing overhead and told me to lie down on this massage table....awesome....looks comfy to me. I didn't know I'd get to lay down for this, but I have no problem with that. She proceeds to ask me if I'd like the scalp and shoulder massage that comes along with the facial. My most common comment that day was, "Is it included in my gift certificate, because I don't have any money?." It was, so of course, I took her up on the offer.

The spa facial aparently has nothing to do with makeup or getting pretty...which was fine with me. It's more of a relaxation and cleansing type thing. Cool, I like to relax :-)

Amanda keeps explaining all kinds of things that she'll be doing in the time we spend together. I understood about half of what she told me, but agreed to everything. I could hear her at the head of my bed mixing things, and running water, and as I'm wondering what all she's doing, I get this song by Leon Russell running through my head. It's called "Stranger in a Strange Land." I decided that was my theme song for the day since I had no clue what was going on.

She started out by cleaning my face off....that was the only point in time that I knew for sure what was happening. She told me to try to keep my eyes closed because she would be working on my eyelids a little too. So, I closed my eyes, and just sat back to enjoy the pampering. She had some kind of little paint brush that she put all kinds of different stuff on my face with. Surprisingly, it didn't tickle my face like I thought it felt really good. After a few layers of whatever it was, she starts applying some kind of mask that will harden up a little. She put a little dryer in front of my face and started on the scalp massage while my face was drying. That was one of the best parts. After that, she put some steamy towels over my face and wiped away the mask. I figured we were pretty close to being done...until I heard her say, "OK, now don't let this noise scare you." Sorry....had to open my eyes for that one......She had some kind of little mini electric sander she took to my face....I swear that's what it was. It didn't hurt. It actaully felt pretty good, but it was kinda weird. Once again, I hear "stranger in a strange land" dancing through my head and I laughed a little at myself.

After she quit sanding my face down, she used some gritty exfoliating stuff to get all the dead skin off. That felt good too, but it stung a little. It felt fantastic when she wiped it off though. Then she continued to paint something else on my face that she had been mixing up while I was laying and listening. This time, the brush tickled a little, and I laughed at myself again. I don't know if she thought I was laughing at her or what, but she surely thought I was crazy. I was willing to tell her I was laughing at myself, but only if she asked, so I never told her.......I guess she'll wonder forever now :-)

While this last stuff was sinking into myface, she got some massage oil, and rubbed my shoulders, neck, chest, and upper back a little. I wanted her to quit worrying about my face and just keep doing that, but I guess that's not how the deal goes down......I think it's a scam.....they tease you with a little massage so you'll want to come back for the real deal later on. But Ryan took care of that for me....I go back on the 22nd for my massage.

Finally, she put a few steaming towels over my chest and my face again, and wiped everything away. I didn't want to move. I just wanted to lay there and contiue to enjoy the music in my own head....I completely forgot there was music playing in the room. Stranger in a strange land wouldn't leave I said, that was my theme song for the day, because I was clueless. But once I got the wrap and the robe figured out, I was on the right track.

I'm just glad I didn't drop the robe and walk in topless. I actually considered it for a minute and thought surely that's not what they expected me to do :-)

Friday, March 09, 2007

Happy b-day to my mom

Happy birthday to my lovely Mother!!!
She is 57 today.....Love ya MOM!!!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

One Week Later......'s true....Jen beat me to the Ekoostik Hookah blog, but I had to take some time to recuperate......what a weekend!!!!

Friday started like a pretty normal day off work. I slept in, got up and lounged on the couch with the puppies for a couple hours...then it hit me.........I get to see Ekoostik Hookah tonight!! That's when I started getting all giggly like a little girl!!! I get so excited about these shows.....I honestly can't think of anything I'd rather do in my spare time besides watch and hear live music...that's it. If I can do that every spare minute for the rest of my life, I'll die happy.

At about 6:30, people started showing up at my house. We had seven or eight people meeting there to follow us to Lafayette for the show. Ryan and I had bought a case and a half of beer for the occasion, so a few friends started working on those for us. I was the designated driver, so I encouraged them to all get sauced before we left. They all left plenty of beer for the after party though.

A couple of my good friends who happen to also be my neighbors, were tagging along to see E.H. for the first time. I was very happy with their responses to the band. Bobby Blue, who lives in the old school house in West Middleton, went along, and had the time of his life. It was awesome to see him with that big open mouthed smile on his face dancing front and center with me. I think some of the guys in the band thought he was my Dad. Actually, he reminds me a lot of Dad. So, it was very special to have him there with us. It's interesting that Bobby's last name is "blue," because he's a musician who dearly loves the blues. I have gotten to know Bobby pretty well over the last few years, and he has become somewhat of a father figure to me, so it was great to spend what I consider some good quality time with him.

We also met up with several other friends when we got to the many people in fact, that I can't even remember who all was there. One of my friends who I've met because of the band, Kelly Jo, came down from Michigan for the weekend to join us. We also made plans for our friends from Indy, Matt, Dave, Kelly (our fellow blogger) and their friend Ryan to come stay with us Friday night.

The band was on fire. It was an awesome show. I wish they would have started earlier so the "early birds" like Jen and Chad could've made it through the whole show. (Did you stay for any of the 2nd set?) I understand that it's really hard sometimes when you work the day shift to make it all the way through those late shows....but that second set was rockin'!!!! They covered "Hush" by Deep Purple, which is one of my favorite bands, so I was exstatic when that started!! I danced until I thought I'd float away in my own sweat. My hair was literally drenched by the time the show ended....but I got a lot of exercise that way :-)

After the show, we stuck around for a few minutes, because I had a picture of Steve Sweney (the guitarist) that I wanted him to sign. It's a really cool photo that ryan took when we went to Atlanta to see them this past fall. His guitar looks like it's on fire, and there's red smoke rolling up towards his head. The guitar is very blurry with movement, but his face is perfectly's one of about three pictures on that roll of film that actually turned out. The rest were completely blurry....I don't know how it happened, but it's one of the coolest photos of Sweney I've ever seen.

You guys know I'm not exactly shy, but when it comes to talking to Sweney, I get all clammed up sometimes. I don't know why he is so intimidating for me, but he is. He's actually the only member of the band that I feel that way about.

So, I'm standing at the back of the stage with this picture and a black sharpie in my hand, and Dave, the keyboardist, sees me, and waves me backstage......YES!!!!!!! I'm in!!!!!!

I got a hug and talked to Dave about the show for awhile, and then he asked what I was holding. I showed him the picture and asked him if he thought it would be OK to go ask Sweney to sign it. I was really nervous, and I said something like "will you do it for me?" Dave just smiled and laughed and said "why, are you scared?" I said, "Yes, Sweney scares me," then Dave really started laughing at me. He told me not to be scared and that Sweney was "just a big pussycat" and I should go do it myself, so I went for it. I felt a little awkward because I was walking up to him while he was in the middle of a conversation with John Mullins about a song they had done that night. It sounded like he was possibly correcting something that John had done wrong. It didn't sound like he was upset, but I just felt like it wasn't a real good time to interrupt. So, I stood silently, holding my photo and my pen and leaned up against a wall. Finally, Steve and John looked up at me and John said "hey! It's our little party girl." I loved hearing that, because there's a song they do called "Party Girl." Kelly Jo had aksed me if they ever called me that. At that point, I didn't know that they did, but I guess the answer to that is yes!!

Sweney noticed I was holding something, and I just kind of handed it to him. When he saw it, his eyes lit up. I told him when we took it, and asked if he would sign it for us. Of course, he did, and he even asked me if I could get another copy for him. All of a sudden, I wasn't scared anymore. I started rattling off all kinds of silly stuff then....I was like "well sure...what do ya 8x10, a 4x6, whatever you need Sweney....I'll get it to ya tomorrow!!!" He was happy to hear that we were traveling all the way to Columbus to see them again the next night, and thanked me for being a loyal fan, and even mentioned something about how he appreciates it when Ryan and I are in front of him because he doesn't "have a bunch of drunks falling on his equipment." That made me feel really good. I may knock something over because I'm dancing like a fool, but it's never because I'm drunk!!!!

So, that whole episode of going backstage and talking to Sweney made the night a huge success in my eyes. Of course, once I was back there, I talked to the rest of the band. I had already stopped and talked to Eric (my favorite drummer EVER) before the show, but I hadn't gotten my post show hug from him, so I took advantage of that right away too.

After I got done talking to the band, we headed home for the after party. Most of that case and a half of beer was still waiting on us!! Ryan had to meet us at the venue, because he had to work Friday, so he drove seperately, and didn't have anything to drink since he was driving.......needlees to say, he was very happy to get a nice cold one when he got home. There were seven of us heading to Columbus, Ohio on Saturday, and all of us stayed together at my house Friday night. We stayed up discussing the setlist, the solos, and how excited we were for Saturday's show!! Kelly Jo was especially excited that they played "Ridgeway Sky" because she has requested that at the last few shows she's gone to....they finally played it!!!! That became a big topic for the night, because it's the first time they've played it with the new lead singer. Apparently, they hadn't been playing it because he didn't know it yet. So, we were there for the debut of that song with John Mullins. Kelly Jo kept saying "I'm gonna die!!!! They're playing Ridgeway Sky!!!!!" She was a very happy girl!!!

I think it was probably about 5:00 AM by the time we all decided to go to bed. I went to bed with a big smile on my face knowing that I was getting up to do it all over again.

We got up and hung out at my house for awhile. It took awhile for everyone to get moving, but once we were all cleaned up and ready, we headed to El Arriero's for lunch and then hit the road to Columbus. I did make one stop at CVS to get copies of that photo that Sweney wanted. It was about a four hour drive. Kelly Jo rode with Ryan and me, and the rest of the gang rode together in another vehicle. At one point on the way, Dave almost rear-ended me. He squeeled his brakes so hard that I thought for sure I was that turned into big conversation, and some teasing of eachother as we drove along.

The trip seemed like it only took about 4 minutes instead of four hours. we talked and sang and acted silly all the way there. The doors opened at 8:00 PM, and we pulled up at about 8:15...perfect timing.

The venue where they played in Columbu s is called The Newport. It's an older venue with really high ceilings, and really cool architechture. It's kind of a pain to see them in Ohio on a college campus, because the people from Ohio think the band belongs to them!!! We always have to fight for a spot in the front....but believe me, that's where I was all night long!!

Once again, I shook my booty 'til I thought it was gonna fall off. I didn't even take my camera in Saturday night, because I didn't want to dance with it stuck around my neck, and I don't trust the people in Ohio like I trust the people in Lafayette, so I wasn't chancing setting it down anywhere. I think that may be the first time I have ever made it through an entire show without taking pictures, but I knew Kelly had her camera, and she has already posted some pictures from Saturday night on her blog.

I was very happy to hear the song "Party Girl" after John referring to me as their party girl the night before.......I kind of felt like maybe they played it for me and Kelly Jo. We were front and center the entire show, and besides a couple drunken a**holes, the crowd up there wasn't too bad. There was one drunk guy in particular that kept pushing on us girls. Finally, after he put his hands on Kelly, her husband, Dave, stepped in. All he had to do was give him a little shoulder, and he hit the was hilarious....and we didn't see him the rest of the night!!! I always hate it when those people end up next to me, but that's the price I pay to be right up front sometimes. Ryan knows to watch for those guys, and he jumps in at least once every show it seems. He's my bodyguard!!!!

Kelly, Kelly Jo, Dave, Matt, Ryan, and the other Ryan spent most of the night bouncing off of one another as we danced the night away. Although the venue is not my favorite, i love to see them play there, because I know the band likes it. You can tell. Their energy is always about ten times the amount when they're at The Newport. They've been playing there for about 16 years, so I'm sure there's certain sense of comfort there.

When the show was over, I was hoping to find Sweney so I could give him that photo. I never saw him personally, but I gave it to Eric to give to him. Hopefully he got it!!

We actually headed out of there pretty quickly after the show was over. The drive home wasn't bad at all. I was really dreading it beforehand, but Ryan and Kelly Jo stayed awake with me most of the way. The moon was full and beautiful, so that kept me going too!!!

When we finally pulled into the drive at about 7:00 AM Sunday morning, I was still excited. I didn't feel at all tired......but believe me, I felt it Monday. We got a little sleep before we woke up to wish Kelly Jo a safe trip home. Then, being the crazy kids we are, we decided to drive back down to Indy to visit some friends who had been at Friday's show, but not Saturday's. We neede to let them know that they should've gone.....yeah, we rubbed it in their faces a little. All in all, it was one of the best weekends I've had in a long time. Even though it tore me up physically, I would and will be doing it again the first chance I get.

........Only one more week until I drive to Michigan to see them....YEAH HOOOOKAAAAHHH!!!!!

This is a pretty good action shot of kelly friend from Michigan...

Here's Ryan , Nick, and our father -figure....Bobby Blue....

Me and Aunt Cindy.....

Then we have Steve Sweney tearing up his guitar!!! And Dave on keys...he's the one who told me the Sweney was just a big pussycat...

Jen and Chad hung out at the bar with Michelle and Ryan Gilbert most of the night, but I did get to dance with Jen a lot the first stuff!!!!!

I thought this was a pretty good picture of Cliffy...yes, I call him Cliffy to his face sometimes. he's like the nicest guy in the world. He's got a soft, sweet smile that makes everyone feel comfortable aroun him.....not to mention he's a bad a** bass player :-)

This is Dave and our fellow blogger Kelly...just hanging out after the show at my house.....