Archives for November 2012

Top Secret Mission and Things That I Don’t Love About My Apartment

Good morning readers! Today, I am on a top-secret mission. So I only have 4.32 minutes to write a blog post-here goes:

I love that we have our own apartment. I love that it is our space. I love that we have two bedrooms with a washer and dryer inside of our apartment. I love that our bedroom is HUGE compared to the last one. Yet, I have never lived in a real apartment. College doesn’t count, because those were fancy-pants Bradley owned apartments. This one is not.

Five Things I Don’t Love About My “New” Apartment

  1. The stovetop is NASTY. Not only is the stove relatively ancient, the metal dishes under the electric heaty dealies are rusting away to nothing.
  2. No garbage disposal. There are very few things that I think are more disgusting than cleaning out the sink drain. Wet, gross food remnants that you have to shake or wipe off into the garbage. Ick.
  3. The broken fridge. Yes, as I mentioned earlier this week, I was forced to throw away cheese. From Wisconsin. This is a travesty in itself. The light wouldn’t turn off inside, which heated the cheese into a disfigured warm mess of cheese. If it hadn’t been like that for days, I wouldn’t have minded much. But it had…so I did.
  4. The cabinets. Which are wood, which is nice…but they have likely been wood since 1983. And that is also gross. Because imagine how many tenants have put their food and dishes on those cabinets. Not everyone is as logical as me, and therefore may have put cleaning products or something gross where I keep the crackers to go with my cheese.
  5.  The biggest thing that I do not love about our apartment, though, is the fact that it is making me ill. I’ve often asked the question, “If I think that I’m a hypochondriac, does that mean that I am?” Well, yes. Maybe.  But the hypochondriac in me is convinced that the headache I’ve had nonstop since moving in is directly related to the apartment. Maybe it’s mold. Maybe it’s carbon monoxide. Regardless. My head has not stopped hurting. And it is not fun.

Well, I said I only had a few minutes…and now I must depart. Top secret mission ensues. While you’re here, go and enter my giveaway for the Chicago Toy & Game Fair passes! FREE. Freakin. Giveaway. Just comment. That’s all. Comment.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Rock Obama Won! And a Gamer Giveaway!

Good morning readers! I have some very exciting giveaway news! But first, a short election story:

Election Joy

4 years ago today, my then-3-year-old godson ran up to me with excitement in his eyes, “Auntie Chrissy Auntie Chrissy! Rock Obama won! Rock Obama won!” My cousin, Rachel, had tried and succeeded in explaining to Little A that this was a big deal. It was historic. Our first black president. A dem president after 8 years of you-know-who. A young president. And a Chicago man to boot. This year proved to be another historic election: Marriage equality on the ballot in 4 states, Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin will become the first openly gay senator, Hawaiian Representative Mazie Hirono will become the first Asian-American woman in the Senate, and in my own home district, Tammy Duckworth will become the first disabled woman in the House. Mad props to our country for fighting for the rights of the vag. I hope someone explained to Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock that rape is bad and you just can’t spin that any other way.

Gamer Joy

As many of you may know, I’m kind of a gamer nerd. I fell into the world of gaming officially upon meeting Brian and learning about all of the SWEET games out there…and going to Gen Con…and sometimes kicking ass at games (and sometimes losing horribly because my boyfriend refuses to help me in games and sometimes aims to destroy me… ) While I don’t particularly enjoy Scattergories, I’m a Scrabble evil genius, and even as a  kid, I always wanted to play Life. So games: Kinda my thing…

Chicago Toy & Game Fair

I’ll be attending the Chicago Toy & Game Fair on November 17 & 18 and I want you to join me! Okay, I mean maybe we’ll get to meet and shake hands and kiss babies, and if you’re really lucky, we might hang out for a few minutes… (Hey, I’m getting ping-back spam now–I’m almost famous!)

The 10th anniversary of this huge gamer paradise is bound to be an event you don’t want to miss. With events and toys for kids of all ages, the Chicago Toy & Game Fair is the largest toy and game show in the country. Located inside Navy Pier’s exhibit hall A, you’ll get to play with giant sized Perplexus and Bananagrams (SO fun), participate in free game tournaments, meet & greet with top game inventors, and so much more.

Luckily for you, I’ve been given a couple of family passes to giveaway so that YOU can attend this fabulous event full of games, toys, games, and more games! Fun for the whole family! All you have to do to enter the giveaway is leave a comment below. Tell me a funny game story or why you want to go to ChiTAG. I’ll be giving away one family pass on Friday, November 9 and one family pass on Wednesday, November 14. So keep the comments coming.

If you’re a teacher, librarian, member of the military, a scout in uniform, or under 3, you get in free. On Sunday, November 18, any grandparents also get in free (with their grandchildren in tow–don’t try to go without the kiddos! That’s just mean.) Of course, if you don’t want to win free tickets, you can buy them at the door. Click here for ticket info and a $2 off coupon.

So get excited! I know I am. Maybe I’ll see you there.

To enter the giveaway, leave a comment below with a funny game story or telling me why you want to go to the Toy & Game Fair. It’s that simple.

NOTE: I am attending the Chicago Toy & Game Fair at the invitation of the ChiTAG people as part of the media/blogger preview. The powers that be from the Chicago Toy & Game Fair have given me the free passes to giveaway on this blog. The opinions expressed in this post are all my own, and I have not been paid to speak them. 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Rock the Vote; Don’t Waste It

I came in and edited this morning. All edits have been typed in pink.

We still have no internet. And our fridge doesn’t work right (I had to *gasp* throw away cheese. Though I considered eating it anyways…I thought better of it when I realized that I did not want my favorite thing ever to become my demise. Food poisoning scares me. A lot. I have an unnatural fear of botulism. Un. natural. fear. I won’t eat reheated grilled onions. ever. A can or jar that seems ‘splodey? No thank you.) And there are still many boxes to deal with. And we have no couch.

But we have a bed and a clean bedroom. And in-unit laundry. And beer. And cupcakes from our un-freakin-believably-adorbs new neighbors (3 and 5 year old girls). Sunday night they waited outside their door to give us cuppy cakes. Happiest girl ever! Funfetti!

Cupcakes from new neighbors

Too cute right?

So we brought them upstairs and went back to carrying stuff in from the car. I raced upstairs with a small shelfy thing as Brian was pulling out the heavy stuff and I snagged a bite of the delish treat and ran back down. Immediately upon returning to the apartment, Brian noticed the missing piece and he told me that the rest of the cupcakes were his…I threatened to bite his nose off…so I got both of my cupcakes. One for dinner and one for breakfast.

And I fixed our fridge. Sort of. I figured out the problem (the light wouldn’t turn off…so it heated my cheese. And ruined it.) But we rigged it up so that it will turn off. And not destroy anything else.

Oh. Right. It’s election day. I got off track. Because obviously, I’m not writing this on election day. Due to the fact that we have no freakin’ internet. And I’m freezing at my parents’ house as I’m writing this. Yesterday. (My tenses are confusing me.) Moving right along…

So I believe that it is important, even though many of my close friends will not participate, to vote. Do some research, because uneducated voting is pretty shitty. If you’ve only been paying attention to the presidential election race, and don’t know…or don’t understand something else on the ballot, ask the election judge…or skip it. Don’t just fill in bubbles like you would on a standardized test.

I woke up this morning, and it felt like Christmas. I showered. Got dressed in my sweet Rock the Vote tee shirt. Reheated some leftover pumpkin cheesecake pancakes and drank some Oberweis milk (I support the dairy products, not the politics. Dropped Brian off at the train. Visited Mom at work (where I got a lecture as to how I should be unpacking…UM HELLO!? Election day, Ma. Relax, I got it covered. Let’s just call it my union break. If in a week, we’re still not unpacked…I’ve got a secret weapon: The Easy Button-Anything still in boxes is getting thrown away.) Edited blog (now) and will soon be on my way to participate in my legal privilege to vote for the leader of the free world.

Just a quick photo shoot: I bought this shirt on clearance right after the ’08 election. I’ve worn it it on every voting day since, but I’ve been waiting patiently for four years to wear it on the big election day.

Rock the vote, don't waste it

Rock the vote

It’s especially nice that I now only live 15 minutes from my polling place instead of 30. By the next election, I’ll be settled into another home…and this time I’ll be registered to vote there. And it will be wonderful. Life is good. All the pink print I just typed cheered me up. I feel better already. It’s amazing what writing can do for your soul.

What are you waiting for? Go vote!

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Adventures in Moving

Well, fair readers, it’s official. I no longer live in the home of Wayne and Garth. Goodbye Aurora, Illinois. Hello suburban town MUCH  closer to civilization.

Moving to a new home

I’m home! This is the only room that has been fully assembled. Though it’s missing the chatchkies. They will be arriving shortly.

We moved this Saturday. Brian and I were lucky to have Anna, Cletus,  Mark, and one of Brian’s pals to help us move.

The Moving Crew

Taking a break to check out “cool techy stuff”

The Trouble with U-Haul

It all started bright and early…as Brian and I had to drive 30 miles to pick up the U-Haul. This pissed him off immensely, considering we lived 5 minutes from a U-Haul location. He wanted to just go into the one near us and demand a truck. I called and they didn’t have one available…in any size. So we sucked it up and drove to the south suburbs. I asked if we had to pay extra for mileage. He didn’t know. He didn’t seem pleased with the question answer portion of our morning, so I stopped talking…and started texting Cletus to request his assistance.

Once we arrived at U-Haul, I told Brian that I was coming in. He looked at me with a Please don’t. You’ll only embarrass me. So I hopped out of the car with a shit-eating grin on my face. We walked in and I immediately informed the guy that we were not pleased with the 30 mile drive that we had to take. And I asked if mileage was included. 30 miles. Fuck. That. I told him that I wanted an extra 30 miles added to cover our drive time to the house. He made several suggestions on how to maybe save money, until I told him that we would be traveling about 90 miles that afternoon and he realized the issue. So the amazing and wonderful Eric of U-Haul offered to add as many miles as he could (as a regular employee) at no charge. For the record–it’s 70 miles.

I was prancing around U-Haul waiting for their slow-ass computers to work…and one of the other workers complimented my pullover… My Adidas pullover. She asked the dreaded chick question: “Where did you get it?”

“Um…it was my ex-boyfriend’s?” Yes. The sweatshirt in question belonged to The Bartender.

Heavy Lifting

My boyfriend has this weird belief that girls shouldn’t lift heavy furniture. Regardless of whether or not I used to be able to throw a girl 20 feet in the air…regardless of whether or not I have helped other people move…regardless of whether or not I have helped build festivals and haunted houses…I’m a girl…and he doesn’t trust me to lift furniture. He suggested I manage the Tetris of the moving truck…and unload things to the guys. He just didn’t trust me.

Well, he didn’t. Until he realized that these 3 other guys were rockin’ out and exhausted carrying our ridiculously heavy, but beautiful, furniture through the mazes to get to our new bedroom. And finally…on the last (and heaviest) piece of furniture, he looked at those exhausted men; then he looked at me…and said, “OK, let’s do this.” So I did…with a little help. We loaded the hutch onto the small dolly that they hadn’t really used at all. Brian and I rolled it around to the “front” of our new apartment.

Then, was time to carry it up the double flight of stairs. We got to stair number 2, and I may or may not have had to pause in order to figure out how the hell to best tackle this beast. So we tried another 2 stairs. And Brian, was all like, “OK, Cletus…time to help her out,” and the other two guys jumped in as well…and with a 5-person team lifting this thing up the stairs…we finally got the giant hutch into our bedroom. Maybe I needed a little help, but dammit, I could do it.

 3 Things I Learned from Moving

1. Set up internet and cable BEFORE moving. Like a week before. It takes 3-5 business days for internet stuff to arrive. That’s a lot of days without internet. Lucky for you I wrote this post last night, NOT from my new home.

Things I Learned from Moving

I miss the internet already

2. I have a lot of stuff.

3 things I learned from moving

I don’t even know where to start. So I’ll sit and ponder where to put my Christmas trees.

3. Brian and I have discussed this. We both feel so much gratitude for the amazing men who helped us. They were amazing. And helpful. And wonderful. But we will try never to make our friends endure this again. I promised Cletus that he would not have to help with the next move.  The next time we move-we’re hiring professionals.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

The Sunday Morning News: Right Wing Crazies, Sluts, & Butlers

This week, I’ve come across a really special collection of news articles for your viewing pleasure. In some messed up version of reality, these things actually happen. Did you know that CNN was the Gay Gestapo? Me neither. A fantasy sex league in high school, in which male students bet on which girls they can get with…and what they do (or don’t do) about it…And finally butler school: Where can I sign up?

In more important news, Topango and Corey Matthews of Boy Meets World fame may be returning to TV…with their pre-teen daughter in Girl Meets World. The Boy Meets World long overdue sequel is casting right now and courting the two stars who married in the series finale 12 years ago… Oh Please please please! Yes! I’d watch it. I don’t care if it’s for teeny boppers.

The only problem is this: Right now (and I’m not complaining because I’m loving every sassy Christina minute of it) Mr. Feeny is on Grey’s Anatomy. And he can’t leave. He makes Christina likeable again. This is important. Mr. Feeny does good things for people in need. Always has. Christina needs him.

What do you think, readers? Which piece of news is your favorite?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Brian Shares Saturday: Random Pets and Christmas Music is Coming

Sometimes, I’ll tell Brian that I want a pet…you know like a puppy or a kitten. Even though I’m allergic to both. I tell him how wonderful it will be when we have a sweet little kitten to take gratuitous cat pictures of. Or to have a puppy waiting for us when we get home every night…

For some reason, he keeps suggesting other…less suitable pets. I blame the internet. Here are potential pets that my darling boyfriend has suggested:

A praying mantis or mantid or something creepy crawlie esque… This was in our early days of dating…to which I responded, “You’re frightening.”

There are plenty of strange animals that my boyfriend has suggested, and of course, I can’t, for the life of me, remember what they are…The most recent of which is a Hedgehog…I mean…it’s kinda cute and all. We could name it Sonic.

I’ve also asked for chickens…and a bunny. If I had a bunny, I would call him Bunnicula and train him to use a litter box. He would love me forever. And suck the juice from tomatoes.

Other Brian shares this week include:

Disney meets Star Wars, in which Brian proclaimed, “PERFECT for you!” (me)

A REALLY short story

and this was a few weeks ago, but now it is more true than ever…. You think my love for Halloween was big…just wait until you see my Christmas obsession. Brian might kill me before the holiday is up, because Lord Stark knows what’s up: Christmas Music is Coming.

That wraps up this week’s edition of shit Brian shares with me. Tune in next week for whatever memes pics and vids my boyfriend discovers for me.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Confession Friday: The Last Minute

Confession: I wait until the last minute to do lots of things, which often works out smashingly for a girl like me, but sometimes…not so much.I guess you could say, I’m a bit of a procrastinator.

So, several weeks ago, I was talking to Katie (Of yesterday’s guest post and Words for Worms Katie) and she said to me, I’m in on a sweet Secret Santa blogger thing. You need to get in on this. And so I looked up Pocketful of Joules, and her fun Fall Swap. I e-mailed her and requested to join the club.

When I received my secret swapper…I was so pumped! I felt honored and excited to get Heather from the B(itch)log. As a Chicagoan(ish) myself, I felt that it was my duty as a blogger and new blogfriend to find Heather the perfect little piece of Chicago (as she is currently residing in California).

As any good Chicago-land native knows, if you’re born here…this will always be your home. If you move here and acclimate into the joy of northern Illinois…this will always be your home. They don’t call it Sweet Home Chicago for nothing. It’s the best.

Bon Jovi Loves Chicago

Me too, Jon; Me too.

So, I decided that dammit, I was going to give Heather a piece of Chicago, come hell or high water. And I searched. And searched. And I realized that sending something from Chicago will give the secret part away immediately. So despite my better judgement, I moved to the online world. I found a lot of “Chicago in the Fall” products…but they were cheesy and uninspiring. Even the “Chicago in the Fall” Apron, after reading that Heather digs aprons…it just wouldn’t do. I’m a perfectionist by nature, and I really wanted to get this right.

So finally, in the home stretch, on the last week of the swap, I was searching the digital world like a maniac. And came across this SWEET poster. Sure, it may not be completely “fall” themed. But shit! It was the coolest thing ever. A World’s Fair Chicago poster dated May-November 1933. And it was everything I was looking for (you know except for the fall theme). But it did say November… November = fall… Truth be told, I totally searched “November Chicago.” I call it a success.

So I had it shipped to Heather without any purchasing info, and the really nice guy even offered to throw in a secret message!

Of course, because it was shipped from a third-party to keep my identity a secret…and I waited so long to send it…it took forever to get to Heather. Joules was worried. Katie asked if I had sent it. and Heather was waiting and waiting and waiting.

Then she got it, and I was worried that she didn’t like it (I worry a lot…an ex used to tell me I was wound tighter than an 8 day clock…douche.) I kept thinking, “Maybe she was hoping for a cute scarecrow or pumpkin or fall snack…”

In the end, I think I did alright… You can read about Heather’s super excited reaction (She loves me more than French toast! MMMmmmm French toast…maybe I’ll make some for breakfast—nah Fritos and queso is more my style) on her blog post about being homesick for Chicago.

In other procrastinator news, I finally get to send my giveaway today to the winner! Lily from It’s a Dome Life… I had to dig through a lot of moving boxes to find my Huck Finn books.

Procrastination is a lot like Masterbation

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Katie’s Guest Post: Like a Word Ninja

All Chrissy commentary has been, as promised, printed in a separate color so as to differentiate from guest post writing. Enjoy.

Hello Chrissy’s Readers,

This is Katie, and I’m guest posting today. Let’s just go ahead and clear a few things up before we start, shall we? I am Katie and I write a little book blog called Words for Worms. I am one of Chrissy’s real life best friends. As in, we knew each other prior to whoring ourselves out as bloggers. Regular readers of Chrissy’s blog will know me as Penny, because when Chrissy started this blog odyssey, she offered me the anonymity of a fake name. I accepted, because she knows too much about me. Perhaps my trust is misplaced here, but so far she hasn’t posted anything terribly incriminating about me. And, frankly, I’m really boring, and was pretty boring even when I was “wild,” so I’m blowing my cover.

The first time that Katie posted–as Penny– I was running late to work and needed a post. Fast. So I said to Katie… “Hey Katie, want to guest post on my blog?” And Katie gave me a resounding “YES!” You know… as resounding as a text message can get. “What does that entail?” So, I gave her a login and password for my site. I told her not to embarrass me too much. And I told her to have fun. Three days later, Katie decided that she, too, wanted to be a blogger.

Okay. So. As my blog suggests, I’m a big nerdy bookworm. I love words. They’re delicious. My parents are both notoriously bad spellers (sorry guys, but you know it’s true) so we never played Scrabble in my house growing up. Ever. When I got to college, Chrissy took it upon herself to teach me how to play Scrabble, so she’d have an unsuspecting victim someone to mercilessly eviscerate challenge.

Double word, triple letter score. All. The. Time.

I was just learning to play Scrabble. I was content to create words with my little tiles. It was exciting and fun! While I was having a ball making words like “garden” and “feet” she was still going full force. We’re talking full Scrabble domination. She’d routinely have quadruple my score. Imagine the modern US Army picking a fight with… Luxembourg (a Luxembourg without any allies to save them from the onslaught.) “Garden” and “feet” were met with “Qoph” and “Qi” and “Qat”. In case you were wondering, those ‘Q’ words mean: the 19th letter of the Hebrew alphabet, a circulating life energy in Chinese philosophy, and a leaf of the shrub  Catha edulis, respectively. The Q’s always fell on triple letter squares.

In my defense, I was only trying to help Katie learn. You can’t learn without a strong master. Would Karate Kid have become a karate genius without the challenge from Mr. Miagi? Would Obi Wan have been the Jedi master without Qui Gon Jinn? Would Baby have gotten out of the corner without Patrick Swayze? No. 

Chrissy knows every two letter word. Every weirdo Q word. Words that don’t look like real words. But don’t challenge her! Damn Straight! She’s got that doggone Scrabble dictionary memorized. Way before there was Words with Friends, Chrissy found scrabble online. Nobody we knew could challenge her. I almost lost a few friends because of it… She had a super amazing high score. Sometimes she’d play on my account because I was so pathetic. Not only is she super good at Scrabble, but she’s crazy competitive. DO NOT bet her money on a game. Any game. Ever. I can beat her at Trivial Pursuit, but we’re matched pretty evenly. It’s just not a good investment.

Katie is very good at Trivial Pursuit. I’ll admit…She’s better than me. But I like it better when she talks Chess. “I’d play by myself, but I won’t. I know myself too well, and I’ll end up cheating in favor of one side.”

Also, Brian’s friends call me the Jason Bourne of Gaming. I can pick up a gamer game (with ridiculously detailed rules and win conditions) in less than a game, strategize, and often win.

Remember in Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey how they played board games against death to win back their lives? (You. Have. Sunk. My. Battlesheep.) Chrissy would totally win her soul back if she played Death at Scrabble. Like a word ninja. You’ll never know what hit you.

Trust me, Death. You don’t want a piece of this.

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!