About our Blog

This is the story all about how our lives got flip turned upside down! We moved across the country from the suburbs of Chicago to Los Angeles. We are embracing our new life with outdoor living, healthy eating and fun adventures!

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Dryer Woes - UPDATE

For those of you following the washer & dryer woes...we had an LG repairman come out this morning to fix the dryer...only to find out that it is indeed a clogged vent.

Well, that was $80 well spent...looks like I'll be hoisting Brian up to the attic again tonight for some more fiberglass fun!

I'm really starting to run out of clean clothes! Thank goodness it's Halloween weekend and I will be dressed up...and I can use Dad's old trick...just turn your underwear inside out!

Nashville Weekend (Part Deux)

So it's been over a week since we got back from Nashville so (spoiler alert) almost everyone has already seen the cowboy boots that I got! So, I better write the dang blog already!!!

On Sunday, with renewed hope, Mom, Bri and me hit downtown Nashville again and stumbled upon another awesome boot store rockin' the same sale as another place...buy 1 get 2 free. Luckily, all THREE of us found our loves! I finally got me some cowboy boots and I LOVE them! I love them so much I only took a pic of Brian's - oops!

Loving this look! Brian is goin' country ya'll!

After a nice lunch and walk around downtown, we went to a bar closer to the college campus's to just use the bathroom really quick and then discovered that the beer's were buy one get one! WOO HOO! We were lovin' Nashville ya'll! We got home and watched the Bears game together and passed out shortly after that.

Monday was our last day - so we had to do something good! Well, Mom had a good idea and a chance to cross something off of her bucket list...she mentioned that she had always wanted to try Rock Climbing and she knew of a place - Climb Nashville...where we rocked the harness look!

Hopefully Betsy isn't seeing this so I can keep the t-shirt I stole!

Part of the tricky thing with this place was that they don't have a climbing support staff - they literally teach you how to belay (AKA hold the rope to make sure your parter does not plummit to their fate). So, I let Brian and Mom learn how to do that. Here's Brian helping M-O-M!

Looking good M-O-M!
Here's Mom belay-ing Brian! It took her a while to get the hang of it...and Brian was a little nervous!

Looks like Mom finally got rythm going!
 It was a great time! It's an activity that really challenges you physically and mentally! You really have to push yourself to take the next grab and go higher...

Wall climbing day pass.............................................$17
Training to belay.......................................................$15
Hand chalk...............................................................$3
60-year old crossing a big one off the bucket list.......PRICELESS

We cleaned up at the house, did one last engine check for Mom's radiator, had my last Nashville style Rib dinner and went to the airport. We had a great time!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Nashville Weekend!

Bri and I took off to the south this weekend for a long break visiting my mama in Nashville! We were able to find some super cheap tickets after contemplating a drive down there. I’m glad we flew so we could make the best use of our time during our visit, but the thing about cheap tickets is that they usually have you booked at more inconvenient times…so we were rising and shining at 4 AM on Saturday! Sometimes that’s our bedtime on weekends, so it was a bit hard to get up and moving, but we managed. The good thing was that we got to Nashville before 9am…Mom met us at the airport and we headed home to see her “new to me” house.

Unfortunately, on before we could get there, we noticed some smoke coming from under the hood…we got her home though and Bri was able to look under the hood. Looks like we had a radiator leak and a bunch of steam spewing out of it. We cooled the car down and got to the auto store for some JB Weld to seal it. Mom was grateful that Brian was there to help out since he is a master at handling this kind of stuff! Brian…our hero!!!

After he saved the day, us ladies took him to Johnson & Murphy where the fabulous saleswoman, Wendy took extra good care of him…he must have tried on every shoe in the place! We took advantage of mom’s 50% off discount and let Bri shop ‘til he dropped! We were a bit nervous about getting all of these goodies on the plane home…

We got home so mom could get ready for a wedding and Brian and I got ready for a night on the town! We dropped her off and headed to downtown Nashville. I was determined to find a rockin’ pair of cowboy boots – especially after Brian outdid me in the shoe department earlier in the day (I can be quite competitive and if he gets shoes than I get shoes!!!). Of course after making our way to the good boot stores I couldn’t find any boots in my pre-set price range and Mr. Shopper finds his pair in seriously less than 5 minutes!!! OMG! I was so frustrated…so we left boot-less and ate some Country BBQ Ribs! That was good!

We bar hopped a bit and finally found a bar to our liking with some live country tunes. We sat at the bar and noticed a mason jar of alcohol. Something called Popcorn Sutton’s Tennessee White Whiskey that we of course had to try! It was kind of gross, but also kinda good! We looked up the website while we were sitting there and now are afraid that this guy actually bottled the stuff we drank!

That’s day 1 of our trip! More to come later on even more fun that was had!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Dryer Woes

So, I had a particularly stressful day at work yesterday when some bad news about bonuses and profit sharing came through to the little people...I got home and we decided to relax a bit and "Draper" it up. We poured some cocktails and sat in the living room to talk about our days and played with Brian's new toy - a remote control helicopter. It was quite pleasant. We made dinner and cleaned up and then went upstairs to do some laundry in preparation for our Nashville trip on Saturday.

I had a load in the dryer and Bri had a load in the washer. I went to start folding and discovered that all of my clothes were still wet. Well, that's funny becaue my clothes were still wet earlier in the day when I had already run the dryer once already. GREAT! Houston, we have a problem...

Brian was on the phone downstairs doing dishes which meant I needed to start tackling this on my own. If you don't know much, know that I can sometimes be messy. And when I say me, I definitely mean WE. It may be a serious problem. Anyways, one time a few years ago I was on a girls trip to Wisconsin when I got a flat tire...it wasn't the worst thing in the world but when you travel with an entire trunk and backseat loaded with crap and you have to empty it all out on the side of the road just to access your spare, you realize you make more work for yourself. Well, consider the laundry room last night to be like a stuffed trunk. I basically had to spend about a half hour just clearing out all of the laundry and stacks of folded clothes before even pulling the dryer out. I guess, blessing in disguise, those clothes are finally put away in their drawers...

By the time everything was clear, Brian was off the phone and digging in...except I was on the computer googling troubleshooting ideas. All Brian needed to troubleshoot with me was why his drink was empty! So, Bri continued to problem solve and I began pouring additional cocktails.

One disassembled dryer drum, a vacuumed lint trap and two cocktails later we still weren't getting anywhere. It was already 11pm...then my dad calls. Dad talks Brian through a few more ideas and hands the phone back to me. A few minutes later Brian was screaming that we had an emergency and I basically hung up on Dad and ran into the room where I swear I smelled something burning...nope, what I was smelling was actually natural gas leaking into the laundry room. STOP EVERYTHING! Brian thinks for a second and determines the problem (no, it was not time for another cocktail) and fixes it...still not sure what was wrong or if this was an attempt at an insurance claim...hmm, story checked out and there was no explosion.

Never fear, Brian had another idea...Lauren mixed cocktails and Brian dragged the air compressor upstairs where he proceeded to blow compressed, high pressure air into the lint trap in an attempt to clear out a possible clog...not sure if there was a clog but the entire room filled up with clouds of lint dust...he cleared something out, I guess!

In a final attempt to insure the dryer was running properly, Brian decided to go up into the attic where our vents lead and confirm that there was actual air flow. I used my pro cheerleading skills that I picked up from many viewings of Bring It On, Bring It On Again, Bring It On: In It to Win It...you get the drift...I hoisted Brian up into the hole in the ceiling! He gave it the all clear and even took a few pics so that I could see what it looked like up there and then I helped him back down. Please keep in mind that my husband is wearing an old t-shirt, underwear and crocs...which means that nearly his entire body has now been exposed to insulation and he is itching like crazy! I sent him straight to the shower where he huddled in a corner until the water warmed up...you are supposed to wait until the shower it steamy so it opens your pours and the tiny sharp material doesn't go further into your skin...well, what's a hard working naked man supposed to do in a cold shower while waiting for it to warm up? Babe, can you grab my drink?

Cocktail time!

After the shower and clean up, the dryer had been running for a while and MIRACLE!!! It was working! I finished my load, we folded and hung up and put all of the washing machine clothes in the dryer for the night...it was late and we were tired after all of that hard liquor...I mean work!

This morning I got ready for work and went to grab a shirt out of the dryer...but everything was still wet.

Monday, October 10, 2011


This weekend was a whole weekend celebration devoted to our friend Anthony. Unbeknownst to him, his wife Theresa had planned a surprise golden birthday party for him on Saturday night. As a result, Ant decided to throw another little party on Friday night at his house with a few of the same guests!

The Friday part was a Wii Tennis Tournament. I must admit that I was bit skeptical going into it about how fun it would be. Much to my surprise it was AWESOME! It was so much fun that we all want to make it a regular occurrence. As Brian likes to remind me though, I am soft (as in not much muscle going on here)…so although it was a great time, I am seriously still sore! My entire left arm feels like I flexed for 5 hours straight – which may be what actually happened. I have to give props to the winning team – Brian & Betsy! I’d also like to give props to the other (much better looking) final team in the playoffs – Lauren & Pat! Both teams did walk away with prizes – the Siedors had a new golf scope (that I’m sure will be used at the (gun) range) and the Cunninghams had a mini marshmallow gun. I’m sure both will be put to good use soon!

Saturday, while everyone recovered, Theresa began the surprise setup. We all got the bar along with a lot of Ant & T’s family where we definitely got Anthony! It was a lot of fun – Theresa even setup a slideshow of lots of pictures of Baby Anthony which were hilarious! We loved seeing his parents rocking their 80’s style!

Speaking of rockin’ style – there were quite a few matching outfits on Saturday proving how stylin’ we all are! Charlie, Anthony and Pat had on the same outfit…then Ally and I had almost the same shirt on (the real life color looked way more identical)!

We wrapped up the weekend with a lazy Sunday for me and an amazing one for Bri! He did a great job on the tests for a job he is going for.

Unfortunately Monday started out with some car problems that are slowing life down a bit…wish us luck!

Friday, October 7, 2011

La Blondina - La Stuffina!

So, a few weeks ago I bought a groupon for a bakery (called La Blondina) that was right down the street from my office (correction: TWO groupons)! The bakery appeared french and full of all sorts of freshly baked bread and treats...I patiently waited until Brandy agreed to go with me and try something new for lunch and we are SO pleased!

Just to make you jealous of how thrifty I am, I will share the breadown: (2) Roasted Veggie Sandwiches with goat cheese (on FRESH french bread rolls) ; (1) Tiramisu (like half of a full cake); (1) Polish Cheesecake (not sure what this is, but it looked cheesy good...again, this was the size of half of a cake); (2) Boxes of French Brownies/Fudge? Again...not sure what this is but we already snuck a taste and they are good!; (1) Box of Cherry Kolachki; (1) Giant Loaf of Potato Rosemary Garlic Bread. ALL of this and factor the Groupon in for a grand total of $22.86!!!

I'm thrifty and looking like I'm going to be a chubbo! Don't worry though, all of this dessert is for Anthony's birthday party tonight! Looking forward to a FUN night...HAPPY WEEKEND!