01 June 2005

Angels and Memorial Day
What a fantabulous weekend! Let me just say that I love 3 day weekends and short work weeks! What a busy weekend we had. Let me share some of the basics (in detail of course):

I finally got the puppy I’ve been wanting. For some time I’ve wanted another Australian Shepherd and bugged Ryan for one since before I was pregnant. Some people brought in 6 miniature Aussie puppies to the clinic on Friday. They wanted 5 of them vaccinated and the 6th one put down. The 6th puppy is very much a “special needs” dog. He’s deaf, has partial sight and looks albino. He’s white with a few brown spot areas on his rump and has the bright blue eyes that never dilate. Ryan, who is okay with having to put down animals, decided to take this one home for his wife. So, now we have a 6 week old, 5 lb puppy that can’t hear and doesn’t see the best. All this just weeks before we add a child to our home. Anyway, we joked that we would name it Helen Keller if it was a female. Since he’s a male, I thought Keller would be fitting for a name. My dog and cats really don’t know what to think about him yet.

Saturday I expected to get a few hours in at the office but figured out first thing in the morning, when I sat down to pay a few bills, that my back wouldn’t handle being at my desk for any amount of time. So, I piddled around the house cleaning and playing before supper plans with the folks. My parents treated us to supper at Breitbach’s in Balltown for our anniversary. The 75 minute drive to Balltown was beautiful as we crept along side the Mississippi River for some of the time. Breitbach’s is the oldest bar and restaurant in Iowa established in 1852. There is a 50 mile panoramic view of the Mississippi River Valley from there – it’s awesome! The restaurant had a neat history to it, good food and a fun time with mom and Ralph.

Chinese food and the Outback Steakhouse
Sunday after church, Ryan and I, along with Richie and Sonya, headed for Chicago. We stopped several times along the way, the first of which was 30 minutes later for lunch. We ate at a Chinese buffet that I like in Prairie DuChien, WI. Eventually we made it to our hotel, 30 miles outside the city. By that time I was tired and really could care less if we went downtown or not. So we headed for Red Robin (Chicago had food places that aren’t otherwise found in the Midwest). They closed 5 minutes before we got there and we were bummed that we couldn’t eat there. We settled on Outback and I had been fighting a yucky tummy all day and didn’t even want to eat. The best part about my food was the virgin strawberry daiquiri.

Autograph from a pro baseball player
Monday, Memorial Day, we had plans to catch the Angels v. White Sox baseball game. First thing in the morning, we headed into the city to pick up Jake. For those who haven’t heard me brag in the past, Jake Woods is a childhood buddy of mine who is pitching out of the bullpen for the Angels. So, we picked him up at his hotel on Michigan Avenue. And as soon as we walked outside, people flocked to him for his autograph. It was fun to watch and I wish I would’ve been carrying my camera to catch a picture or some video. While we headed somewhere for brunch, I asked Jake 50 questions about life in his shoes. There were plenty of places downtown to eat but not places to park. We headed toward the stadium, which took us into the ghetto real quick, and eventually decided to go back downtown. We ended up eating at some fast food type of steak sandwich place. Not ideal but it worked. On the way to the stadium afterwards, I had Jake autograph 3 baseballs for me. When we got there, we received some special treatment because we had a “player” in the van with us. It was all so amusing to me because Jake has always been Jake to me and I’ve known him since we were 12. We got to the stadium in time to see batting practice but had been given the wrong information on the time the gates open. After waiting an hour outside (remember – pregnant ladies have to pee often), we finally made it inside. Had great seats directly behind home plate. They were awesome – it’s all about who you know. Richie, our buddy that went with us, also got to meet (again) the manager, Mike Scioscia. When Richie was 17 and lying in a hospital bed with cancer, Mike (then catching for the Dodgers) made a personal phone call to Richie and later invited him to a game and gave him the royal treatment. It was quite a treat for Richie to see him again almost 20 years later. He also met and got an autograph from Rev. Jesse Jackson who stood next to him near the dugout.
We had a great time. Jake didn’t get to pitch because of the rotation but we did get our hopes up in the 8th inning when they had him warming up. I didn’t ever take a picture with him in uniform – I didn’t want to hound him like the typical fan, but I did take some video clips. I’m hoping that he gets to stay in the majors and we can watch him again sometime.


jerelyn said...

Wow, what a weekend! :-) I'm totally jealous of your fun baseball game...

Jennifer said...

Busy weekend for you! Sounds like you had loads of fun. If only every weekend to include a Monday!

CORI said...

WOW! It sounds like you had some great seats!!!

Kristin said...

Exciting stuff going on in Iowa - who would have thought?? ;) I can't beleive you will have a baby boy in less than a month - you are in my prayers!