Tuesday, August 30, 2005
Monday, August 29, 2005
Saturday, August 27, 2005
This is Kara. She spends a lot of her time riding around Iowa City on her bicycle or her Honda 350f motorcycle. She bounces back and forth between here and Austraila. She's a feisty one with what might me the furriest biggest heart of anyone I know. We always have a good time. We also traveled to Italy together in the Spring of '02.
These people are pretty much the core of my support network here in Iowa City. You need help moving there they are. You need help taking care of your kids there they are. You need to go out and get wasted and blow off steam on the dance floor. These guys are in (most of the time- we are starting to get pretty old acting). I've known the two flanking me for over ten years. The outside two (heh heh) are their partners. All very lovely people.
Friday, August 26, 2005
I have been trying to write a decent blog with pictures of my high school friends, brothers, and my parents. Everytime I have lost my blog.
Starting to get fustrated....
Anyway, I'm going to leave soon to play games at my friends' house Melissa and Sara. I will introduce a good bottle of wine to the evening. Feeling sick that I have to get up tomorrow and Sunday morning for work. I need to figure out a better schedule. Perhaps, I need a job where they aren't open on the weekends? Any suggestions for a non-weekend night job that pays at least $10/hr? I'm so not digging Iowa City at the moment. Blech (just puked in my hand). Will try to get more postitive next blog.
I have said a lot tonight but currently have no evidence of it. Stupid Image Uploading. Argh... more fustration seething from me.
I will get better at this. If you want to see how a smart person blogs check out this website. I've been reading it a lot. I have a funny story how I found it. The girl who writes it is a friend of a friend from way back. I happened to work as head server at her wedding. When I started blogging I looked up wedding websites and found hers. There are lots of great recipes and photographs on there as well as links to really great sites. I have been reading it with efforts to glean information about planning and living life happily in general.
I just feel like spreading the love. This way when I mention someone maybe you can cross reference and put a face to the name.
Thursday, August 25, 2005
Sunday, August 21, 2005
For my last night of freedom before school I went to see Must Love Dogs. It was really very cute. Had very good 80s flashbacks from pre-collagen replacement therapy John Cusack. I thought he might grow old gracefully. Why doesn't anyone tell these actors and actresses that the plastic surgery doesn't fool anyone! They just look like an old actor with issues growing old... Frankly, that make them seem even older to me. Anyway, he wasn't too weird in this movie. More the Say Anything... Cusack not the Gross Pointe Blank kind of Cusack.
Besides collagen-face, i.e. Cusack... I really enjoyed Diane Lane. She kept making faces like a friend of mine, Kara. She's really funny and it only made me love the character more. I also was a big fan of the dog, Mother Theresa, as well.
It was a refreshing look at love. Nice to see a movie about people who don't want the fantasy (grown men after women half their age) and the fantasy is actually everyone's reality... or is it their ideal reality? I don't know but she just wanted someone to love her and have breakfast with her on Sunday morning.
I think that really is the big perk of having someone to love. Just knowing that we won't have to work the next morning and that we will wake up and eat cinnamon rolls and drink coffee and watch cartoons makes us sleep better with that little smile on our face. Its almost as if we can't wait to wake up. I just love men who love cartoons. I think it has something to do with Saturday mornings sitting with my Grandpa... sooo relaxing. The breakfast routine is probably my German heritage. Too bad that the American crazy - open 24 hours a day 7 days a week- work ethic ruins so many of these moments. They exist though and damn they're good.
The woman in the movie (Sarah played by Diane Lane) had a big Irish family. Made me miss having family around. Then on the way out I saw a woman about my mother's age walking out of the theatre with her husband. Looked just like her from behind. She had her hands shoved into the pockets just like Mom and she had Mom's walk. I can miss them so much sometimes. Not having a big family and being lil' ole' me here in Iowa really makes me question a lot. Why are we all here? What is the purpose of life?
The big Paul Gauguin painting. Ironically enough that painting is really fitting for this movie in an off-beat sort of way. Here is Gauguin who leaves his family and is all alone on a Tahitian Island with his Javanese hottie, wallowing in the depth of it all until ultimately he killed himself. His ideal seemed to be the thing that sent him to his grave. Well, OK maybe it was the turpentine or the alcohol he drank but it was the choices he made or the pain of it all that made him turn to the booze.
This cute little movie had so many real to live senerios... The older man who has survived past his wife (the love of his life). The wife whose husband left her for a younger woman. The husband whose wife divorced him and took him for everything he had. The happy gay couple always there when the going get rough... The big family there to shove reality into one's fave. Then trying to re-group and continue to live and believe in love.
As I'm growing older and now that I'm marrying I think about the "what if"s... I think about the time that's continually passing and how I know I don't have this life thing figured out. Artists never pretended to have it all figured out. They always see the broad scope of things. That's why they are always depressed and in pain. Its salt in the wound that they see what people themselves can't see. Oh yeah, and some are just plain egocentric- actually I think artists are egocentric by definition.
Anyway, this is what happens when I go to the movies alone. I get to thinking way too much and end up thinking about some painting somewhere. Eventually, I start to think about death and life and living until I'm so into my thoughts I can't even fall asleep. Perhaps, I should stop while I'm ahead. I need a good night's rest for tomorrow. I have a feeling its going to be a difficult transition.
I realized today that I am entirely too long winded in my blogs. I will continue to try and keep my blogs short(er) and more poignant. Also, I'm starting to doubt my title, "BridalBlogging". Yes, I want to use this page for keeping family and friends up to date on the event. However, I also want to blog about home-based ideas, cuisine, restaurants, and art. I feel like I need sub-categories under one general "Katy O" website. Perhaps with time I will become well enough versed in HTML that I will be able to do this. After having started my original blog under wedding topics it might be difficult to organize my information out into different categories. If anyone has any suggestions. Please write! I am very good at following instruction.
As for my day today... Today is the last day of summer. Tomorrow, I go back to my school job. I have some goals for my education profession this year. They are as follows:
1.) Get the appropriate people to fill out praise filled referrals for my graduate school.
2.) Become part of the para-educators union and pursue better wages for myself and other para-educators.
3.) Focus more on individual time with the kids pursuing goals one at a time (if possible).
4.) Voice concerns more often before its too late (yes, I know that was vague).
I made a New Years list of resolutions and I have kept to it pretty well. I think I respond well to clear goals. I sit around and do nothing if I'm not clear and precise (to myself) about these things.
I bought frozen dinners for my lunches at work and I'm excited about them. I bought 4 "Smart Ones" and 4 "Lean Cuisine". I will keep you updated as to which ones to skip and which ones work out. I'm want to eat healthy lunches that don't cost too much. I think it will help out with portion size too.
Last night I helped work the door at a benefit for Camp Courageous. I had a blast. I drank two glasses of Pinot Noir and they were very good. Pinot Noir may be my new favorite wine. I saw that movie Sideways and got curious. Sure enough, I love it. I think we were able to raise a lot of money. 100% of the proceeds went to the camp. In case you didn't know, Camp Courageous is a camp especially for children with special needs. They get to ride horses there, do all kinds of activities and the kids love it. If you are interested click on the above link and give. Its a very worthy cause!
Well, I have some relaxing to do before I have to start the school thing tomorrow so I'd better get to it!
Saturday, August 20, 2005
I spent the day with my honey today. I dub this day, "Love your Dork Day" (wait that doesn't sound bad, does it?) .
"Why?" you ask.
My soon to be better half and I went to Goodwill to drop off some un-needed items from my closet. I wanted to stop in and check out the new store. I found a very nice skirt for only $1.50. That was a steal! Well, Kent found a Gryffindor (Harry Potter) kid's bookbag. This thing is worn out! But my man loves it! He needed a bookbag to put his workclothes in. It needed to have a pocket to hold kitchen shoes on the out side. Demonstrated here by the dork himself. This bag really did have everything Kent needs. Its even has a mesh pocket on the side for a water bottle. However, its tearing at the strap and is DIRTY. But heck, for $1.38 (random price) you can't go wrong. Unfortunatly, it looks like he ripped it off from some poor little third grader. I hope no one beats him up.
Kent just bought a new skateboard. I told him he needs a physical activity that is good for his heart. Kent's body gets worked really hard at work but it has caused him a good amount of stress. I think that his skateboarding idea will help him feel better and have more energy even while he's at work.
Since Kent has a backpack and a new skateboard he also needed new skateboarding shoes to skateboard to work. We went to Payless and found himself a nice pair of black airwalks. He was very happy and I was too because he was able to buy me a cute pair of black suede boots for half off and a sexy pair of silver heels for half off red sticker ($4!!!). I love Payless. I have always told people, "I am a man from the ankle down." So I have to shop for sexy shoes where the drag-queens shop. The drag queens told me that they shop at Payless. They were right.
I recently have made it a habit of riding my bike to work. Kent and I are no longer willing to pay for tank after tank of gas if we can avoid it. As a matter of fact, Kent just left on his skateboard to work. I hope he gets there in time. Kent and I live just outside of city limits in the rapidly developing farmland around Iowa City.
There is an unfinished biketrail that can take you practically to our front door. This bike trail ends at a very busy road into town and starts again about a mile down that road. The trail runs down the Iowa River and is really very beautiful. I feel pretty safe on it while on my bike. However, I worry a bit about Kent going on it with his skateboard. This part of Iowa City was a favorite for our homeless before the bike trail. There is a particularly popular spot where the trail runs under Highway 6 bridge. Campfires, liquor bottles, 40 oz. cans are all testimony to the night before's activities. There is a bed disguised with a wall of rocks in the crook of the bridge.
Last night was particularly spooky. It was a full moon but the clouds and the shadows on the trail were dark making it very hard to see. I rode faster than usual because I was a little scared. I had to stay longer at work than I had anticipated because the regular Friday manager went home sick and I covered her duties. It was crazy at work yesterday. I was stressed. Anyway, there was only one person that I passed on the trail but they were making a weird mechanical movement with their hand over their mouth like they were trying not to vomit. The other hand looked like it was missing at the wrist. That made my heart pump harder and my legs move faster.
I didn't want to ride on the busy street so as soon as I got off the trail I turned into a new subdivision (just a few houses on an unfinished road) and was going to cut through. I ended up walking in grasses up to my shoulders with my bike. The road still wasn't finish and dead ended. I was terrified that a snake was going to crawl up my leg. It didn 't. I saw some weird things jump away on the ground however. They were probably some bull-frogs. I arrived home panting and sweaty. Kent was in the computer room looking at LEGOs on the internet as usual (I really think we should start selling them since its all he does anymore).
So, that should give you a little idea what the commute to and from work is like. I just love riding my bike instead of driving. I feel so much better and healthier and really feel like I'm doing something good (for the environment, myself, and others). I decided on one of my rides that whether or not you want to be a bike rider is more environmentally aware. I can't tell you how much trash I see on the side of the road. You see every bottle, cigarette, and wrapper that blew out of a window or thrown to the side when your on the road into work. It also give you time to really think about it. I recommend commuting by bike to everyone. We should all petition to send my Pop-o home and to ride bikes to work! Who's with me?
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
First of all I want to say, "Happy Birthday Pop-o". You are the sweetest and dearest Pop-o a girl could have. I love you!
I think its appropriate to explain a few of my links. You see, I didn't even know what the heck Blogging was until I visited my cousin in Ohio and she showed me what her husband was working on. I was like my friend who after trying to explain "blogspam" thought it sounds like something terribly messy!
When I returned home I logged onto his Blog-hints website and created my own. I was so excited about it! So I think its only fair to share this with all of you. If you enjoy reading blogs you may want one of your own. This website will help you.
As for the Stamping website, I think its a prime example of the business opportunity that the knowledge of blogging can build towards. Not only that but I remember stamping being a great thing that you can do to save money on invitations, announcements, and stationary in general. I'm not sure I'm going to have the time to put together something this personal for my "Save the Date" cards but I think its a great idea. This site is run by people I know and love and recommend it highly!
If any of you have any interesting web-sites please comment on them. I'd love to take a look!
I had the day off from work today so I made a little progress. I finally got a hold of the Museum of Art. I have had my eye on them since I catered a wedding there last month. Unfortunately, they are in the process of hiring an Events coordinator who will be in charge of this space. I was hopeful that I might be received with interest and excitement. I should have known that the University would be preoccupied in creating obstacles for people instead of creating opportunities. I mean that is the evil irony of it all isn't it. I liked the idea of this space but perhaps I will remain faithful to the original idea of having it in my parents backyard (wherever that may be).
I realized that I booked my wedding on LABOR DAY weekend. I may need to change the date! Perhaps for earlier. I just really liked the idea of a September wedding, for some reason. Probably because Italy is so gorgeous in the fall. Everything is being harvested- the figs, the nuts, and the olives. Everything tastes amazing. Its just perfect. If I do have the wedding on Labor Day the backyard idea would be OK. I wouldn't have to worry about booking anything other than perhaps a church for a ceremony. I may not even do that. I know who I want to minister my wedding. He's a longtime friend of Kent's and mine.
Also I'm applying for a school that starts in October in Seattle, WA called Antioch. They have a very interesting and accredited program in Art Therapy. I thought traveling and then moving altogether made sense. You know, get it all done at once.
Well, I suppose we'll see. There is so much to consider! Everyone should petition John Deere to send Pop-o home!!! We have a wedding to plan!
Monday, August 15, 2005
My fiance and I met while we were both managers in the restaurant business. I have a special affinity towards the cooks. I love their raw conversation. I love the sarcastic sense of humor cooks tend to have. Let's face it! Cooks are nuts. They endure the high pressure environment of cooking on line for a restaurant full of rude and demanding public for sometimes hours at a time. They scream and tantrum sometimes when their angry at you (i.e. I was a waitress for a few years, as well, at a very popular Irish Pub). The rush eventually dies and everyone looks around like the enemies have retreated on a war field. They shake it off and its business as usual until the next horror strikes.
Weddings are like this for cooks only it lasts non-stop from morning until practically midnight for some caterers. I know because I was a catering manager and I have been involved in probably 40 weddings in the past 5 years. I started out serving until I was promoted to front house manager in charge of caterings. I did that until I ended up at a five hundred top wedding in a barn on the longest and hottest day of the year, the summer solstice, without air conditioning. I worked non-stop at this wedding for three days. I went to sleep with my muscles twitching. When that was over- I knew I needed to do something else. I went back to school and finished my degree. I got a job at an elementary school. However, the pay at the school is insufficient so that it requires a second or third job for survival. Therefore, I still serve at weddings and work at a restaurant as a shift manager and serving staff.
As I said before, all this experience has provided us with friendships with different food service clientele. One of our co-workers branched off and now co-owns his own establishment called Jimmy Jack's Rib Shack (just this year)! He has offered to prepare smoked salmon for us and I'm very excited about it. I recommend anyone coming into Iowa City to check this place out. It's right across from the Sycamore Mall, 1940 Lower Muscatine Rd. The phone number there is 354-RIBS or toll-free (877) 354-RIBS.
When it comes to appetizer, I figure I am just as capable of putting together my own vegetable and fruit trays the day before. So I won't be ordering those. I will be ordering plenty of antipasto platters with roasted garlic, meats, cheeses, sauteed mushrooms, olive salad, ect. My theme is definitely going to be Italian - or as my friend Greg would say, "Roman Holiday".
I need to find someone to make up the centerpieces. I have a sweet basil, olive branch with sage and fruit thing in mind. I want a carafe of sangria (peach?) on each table and a bottle of wine. I'll keep some non-alcoholic for the non-drinkers in the back. There is a wonderful little place near here (Iowa City) called The Amana Colonies. Most of their wine is crap sweet wine which I happen to abhor. They make one wine that I love- The Merlot reserve. I might make that the table wine to add an Iowan touch to the reception.
I have to reserve my reception site before any of this is set in stone. As you make have read in an earlier blog that my parents live in Mexico. They should be moving somewhere state-side before the end of the year. I would love to know where they are before reserving anything as I could possibly have a reception in their backyard. You see, unless I have a reception anywhere other than a hotel or restaurant, I will be reserving tables, chairs, and bar for the event.
I am not fond of Iowa City's primary rental agency. I have washed dishes and respectfully returned them as orderly as possible for wedding after wedding only for them to come back with a huge MIA bill for tons of items. A couple of times we had them recount their stock only to find out that they had simply miss-calculated and we actually didn't owe a thing! I can't afford these kinds of mistakes.
So a word out to all you to-be brides, "Be aware of this!". It could cost you hundreds of dollars. They charge even for ripped boxes or if they somehow got wet. When you sign that rental agreement they lick their lips with dollar signs in their eyes. DO NOT have your caterer take the rental table service back to their restaurant to have it washed. Leave everything in the establishment it was delivered to. Servers can clean up and set it aside to be picked up. The second that stuff leaves the reception you run the risk of it getting dropped, broken, lost, or stolen. It's not worth it for anyone. If there is a dishwashing fee for the rental items, PAY IT! Let them deal with it. Its too much of a hassle for anyone else. This is something I am very adamant about.
When I was in Cedar Rapids I worked a few weddings at the Chek-Slovak museum. They rental agency there was very attentive to consumer needs. On a Saturday night at midnight they were able to send someone to load all the stuff up and take it back to their store! That is service. The Iowa City agency would leave a truck there and have you or your totally non-affiliated caterer load the truck. Why? Store hours- Their closed. They are also not open on Sunday. I think a rental agency should always be open on Sundays. If they need a day off they should take Tuesdays and Wednesday. Lets face it! Their primary business happens on the weekends! Being closed on Sundays is plain stupidity and unacceptable.
I'd have my wedding in Cedar Rapids only for one reason- and I think its big. Cedar Rapids is where the Quaker Oats factory is and it stinks! It stinks like stale beer. That yeast smell follows you where ever you are in Cedar Rapids. My fiance is actually from here- but I can't do it. I can't have my family walk away from my wedding with that sense memory. I want only the aroma of sweet basil or lavender in their noses not a sewage plant.
Well, these are the things on my mind these days related to this wedding. I have lots more I want to write about. I still have the dreaded, "dress shopping" to cover as well and the delectable wedding cake! I promise that I will soon have a reception site as well. I'm very excited about the possibility of have it at the Iowa City Art Museum. I'll write soon about that as well.
Sunday, August 14, 2005
I use The Knot for everything. This website provides information that every wedding challenged individual needs to know. When I started looking at dresses I couldn't put words to different kinds of necklines, hems, or different kinds of embellishments. I have enough sense to know what clothes work on this body god gave me but a wedding dress. I knew I might turn out to be a snow beast walking down the aisle. No way, I want to wear this dress and not have it wear me.
The Knot is so extensive. It covers the smallest details such as etiquette, kinds of parties and who pays for what! They are hip enough to tell you that time are changing, everything can be updated and here's how to do it tastefully.
If you are thinking about getting engaged, are engaged or just tied the knot- look on this website for the advice your heart desires. I was even able to set up a free wedding website that has links to help manage my guest list, gifts, registries, RSVPs, and that will eventually display wedding photographs! Its truly a godsend.
Hi! I decided on trying to blog about my wedding experience. While growing up it never crossed my mind that I would someday plan a wedding. However, here I am trying to decide on the best invitations and trying to get motivated to put myself through the horror that is, "dress shopping". You see, I'm 28. I work about three to four jobs on any given day of the year. I have no interest in spending the next year only eating proteins and spending half my day everyday in a gym. I will not be a demure and perfect size 2 on my wedding day. If I'm lucky I'll get down to a size 14-16. My parents, god love them, live in Mexico. The boyfriend? He'll be working about 70 hours a week himself. If this thing gets planned it will be because I did it. So enjoy the blogging. I'll keep you up to date on the best and the worst of it. Enjoy.