Sunday, July 26, 2009

Shall We Dance?

It's Sunday, that means it's time for a blog update!

It's been a pretty quiet weekend. Friday night Tim agreed to go to the laundromat with all of our laundry if I agreed to clean the apartment. It worked out in everyone's best interests. I hate doing laundry, and he hates cleaning. I still think I got the better deal, because I got to watch 16 and Pregnant while cleaning. I learned that apparently, having a baby before you can drive is tough.

Yesterday I went to kickboxing for the first time since vacation. Today my biceps feel like hard little knots, but thankfully, I can still walk. There have been a couple of times where I've taken a break from kickboxing, and then the day after I go, the whole backside of my body feels like I got smashed with a board.

In the afternoon, Tim and I, our Marine friend Cory and Natalie, the Scottish War Bride, went to see the King and I at the historic Alex Theater in Glendale. Now, our choice to go to this movie was slightly fraught, because Dad had tickets to the Twins/Angels game. The game started at 1:10, the movie started at 2, so obviously, I could not do both. And much to Dad's chagrin, I chose the movie (mom and Sara went with him - Cory and Natalie ended up taking their tickets. We have some scheduling difficulties, obviously.) After I'd emailed my dad to say that I was going to the movie he basically disowned me, and for a week, all of my emails were (jokingly) met with "who are you? Quit bothering me." I felt bad about not going to the game, but let's be honest. The last game I went to it was 90 degrees and we were out in the sun the whole time. I though I was going to melt. AND the Twins lost. They regularly lose to the Angels when we're there, which is sucky and disappointing. Not to mention, they have been playing like a bunch of drunk 4th graders recently. Maybe this makes me a fairweather fan, but I just didn't have the energy to drive the hour down to Anaheim to potentially watch my team get SHELLACKED.

Before the movie, Sara texted me that we were up 2-0, so for a moment I was like, "man, maybe I made the wrong choice." But three hours later, when we exited the theater, I had the following messages:

"Twins suck ass right now."
"I even started to cry they were losing really bad they are losing 9 to 2."
"I wish I went ot the king and I instead."

I must admit, I felt bad for poor Sara, but I did get a good laugh. Mostly because we all know if I was there, I would have been crying too, much like I did as a nine year old when the Twins would lose.

The movie was, of course, amazing. Overall, I still prefer The Sound of Music, in terms of the songs and the plot, but no movie beats the King and I in terms of visual spectacle - the sets, the costumes, the whole play within a play portion. And Yul is absolutely amazing. I love it so. I told Tim, if there was any piece of Hollywood memorabillia I'd like to see with my own two eyes, it's Deborah Kerr's dress from Shall We Dance.

I cried at the end, of course, and also laughed a little about the fact that I saw the movie probably twice a month from the ages of 8-13 and thought I had it all figured out, and then I saw it again in high school and suddenly, realized that the King dies of a broken heart because THEY ARE IN LOVE! It becomes a whole new movie then, and makes Shall We Dance even more awesome, because as an adult, I notice the foxy chemstiry that I missed before (Rodgers and Hammerstein are so good at the chaste yet passionate dance scenes - Shall We Dance and the part where the Captain and Maria dance before the fancy party always get me.)

We went with Cory and Natalie to an Irish pub downtown, and then over to my favorite place in the whole world, Bottega Louie, for a coffee and a little dessert. Oh, I was so stuffed and happy.

Nothing much on the agenda today. We are going to see (500) Days of Summer, and I need to run to the grocery store to get lunch and dinner fixes. I am trying to get back in the swing of cooking more. I am SO excited for Julie & Julia to come out. Tim is more excited about seeing G.I. Joe. We've already made a date with Cory and Natalie in Carlsbad that weekend - the boys will go see the movie, and Natalie and I will peruse the goods at the Coach outlet. EVERYBODY WINS!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Viva La Coldplay!

Oh, what a weekend! Friday night was Jakey's 31st birthday party. Tim played a lot of Rock Band, I talked with a lot of people and unlike last year, I didn't fall asleep in Jake's recliner (despite the Rock Band noise. When I'm tired, I sleep!)

Saturday night we had tickets to see Coldplay at the Home Depot Center. This past spring we were watching them in a Grammy's pre-show, and I thought myself, "man, I really love Coldplay, and I loved their last album. They are said to put on a great show, so next time they are in LA, I will try to go see them." I left a message for my friend Jesus, who has seen Coldplay a couple of times, telling him that when the tickets came available, if he needed a date, I was in. WELL, Jesus called e shortly thereafter with the news that they were playing at his very workplace, so he'd be happy to get Tim and I tickets. We got floor seats for only $100 a ticket. Plus free parking. Jesus saves, indeed!

Being on the floor was AMAZING. First of all, you get to walk through all of the barriers and get a fancy wristband. You know me and jewelry... even disposible yellow plastic. We managed to stand about 50 feet back from the stage, slightly to the right. At one point during the show, the band was on this little protrusion to the right, and so we were only about ten feet away from them. The energy was great, and it was so fun just to dance around a little.

And man, does Coldplay rock. The set list was great, the singing was awesome, and we had a fabulous time. Even though me being little, I couldn't necessarily see the entire stage the entire time. Tim did pick me up a few times, and I managed to see around everyone's heads when possible.

Downsides: our area of the grass was apparently also the middle aged makeout region. We got to watch a guy in white jeans samba against his wife's hiney, and then the drunk guy in the Hawaiian print shirt who spent his time either taking pictures, texting, or talking. Or all three at the same time! He would break that schedule for a vigorous schedule of sucking his wife's face. Get a room, kids!

I am also always amazed by how much time people waste taking photos during concerts. Admittedly, I took a couple, but there were folks around us who had their cameras/iPhones blazing the whole time. If you're going to just watch the show through your viewfinder, maybe you should be at home. Also, drunk man next to me, stop dancing and almost elbowing me in my face! There are a lot of perils to being short as a concert. I think next time we go, I am going to get some platform flip flops. And perhaps a tazer.

SO: Here are the pictures!

Pre-show shot. See the guy with the backwards cap? Yeah, I spent a lot of time looking around his noggin.

When the band came over to the stage on the right side. This photo is NOT zoomed in. It was amazing how close they were!

Close up of Chris Martin singing "the Hardest Part." The next song up was "Viva La Vida," which is a recent favorite of mine. Throughout the show, when we were waiting for the band (like before their encore) or during the occasional quiet moment, the crowd would start singing the "oh oh oh oh ohhhhhhh" part of Viva La Vida. SO COOL.

They shot paper butterflies out of cannons. Those are Tim's hands.

The butterflies looked amazing uner blacklights. It was so fun!

Sideburns and I before we left the field. What you can't see (sadly) is my new feather headband. It's trapped in Tim's other sideburn.

I spent today with a friend from college, and then saw "(500) Days of Summer" with Judy (high recommend.) We also went and visited the Yogurtland that recently opened in the shopping center across the street. It's official - Yogurtland is delicious and we have given up the house hunt. Unless they are willing to put a Yogurtland across the street from a single family home on a quiet, safe residential street. I have priorities!

Monday, July 13, 2009

What I Did On My Summer Vacation

Oh, the return to work today. Less than awesome. It's been such a surreal and fabulous ten days. For instance, the last night we spent in LA wasn't frittered away packing or anything boring like that - on Wednesday night we went to see our final Last Remaining Seats show at the Orpheum. It was a 1930's silent film that had been painstakingly restored over the past few years. One of the major funders was Playboy founder and major cinophile Hugh Hefner. And yes, we did catch a glimpse of Hef. And then last night I got to go see one of my favorite singers at the Hollywood Bowl, playing his songs with the Hollywood Bowl orchestra as his backup band. Doesn't get much better than that. Or at least, it's having access to such cultural events that keeps me from completing disliking the smelly, traffic filled, expensive city of Los Angeles.

Here are my favorite pictures from the trip!

From our drive up to Ellison Bay. I like to call this picture "Hello, Beautiful!"

The dock in Gills Rock, site of many happy childhood memories. Like... John dragging a big dead fish into the cleaning area, Kate falling off the dock and into the water, all four of us squishing our face up against the table as Gary cleaned salmon caught on charter fishing trips. Nothing better than being 9 years old and getting a guy to open up a fish's stomach so you can see if there were tiny, half-digested fish inside.

Same as it ever was!

My favorite place in Door County. Hooray Wisconsin, indeed.

I call this picture "Mustache Alley." Tim, Dad, Grandpa C. and Uncle John.

Mom, Hailee and the twins, Phyllis and Suzie. I can remember when Phyllis and Suzie were Kate's #1 (and #2) babies.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner of champions!

The boil master and the boil masters wife. She made him that beautiful necklace.


Your very own Two Bruins. Along with Tim's mustache, Foxy, Loxie, Doxie and a feather.

Parting shot of all of the kids in Door County.

Grandpa Charlie (aka Boil Master Emeritus) and all of the kids.

Me at Nelsons. Oh cheese curds, I love you. And there's bonus grandma skulking in the background.

Grandma and her girls chowing down.

Grandma and the kids.

The Miller girls reunited in Chicago before we had to go home. And all of our charm bracelets. The gold bangle I'm weaing says Etta, which is great-great-grandma Stevens name. But it's not an heirloom - I bought it at an antique story in La Crosse. I am going to pretend that it's a hand me down though.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Sconnie Nation.

Today is our last full day of vacation in Wisconsin, which is a sad, sad thing. It's been an amazing trip all around. We flew into Chicago on the 2nd and met up with mom and dad and Sara, and then crammed into a Lincoln for the six hour hike up to Door County. We spent the Fourth of July there for so many years when I was a kid, but I personally haven't been back since 2002, and Tim has never gone. It had been too long, and after a subpar Fourth last year, I put out the call that all Miller descendants should get their butts to the Door next year. And lo, it was done!

Door County is so unbelievably relaxed. The dads golfed and then were mean to each other and Juan for the rest of the afternoon. The moms shopped for trinkets and kept us stuffed full of delicious food. The kids wandered around, went to the beach and played lawn games.

The Fourth was particularly awesome. We got up and went to the parade in Bailey's Harbor, where we saw a camel and a llama, in addition to the usual floats (though not as men many in dresses as I remember.) We spent most of the afternoon at Ellison Bay, jumping off the pier and floating around, and then had the fish boil and drinks back at the house. Before we left for the fireworks, we ended up having an impromptu dance party in the kitchen and living room area, to Dad and Kate and John's iPods. It was absolutely hilarious and so fun. Then everyone quick changed into their fireworks clothes and we headed down to the docks. Being old pros, we sat on this metal loading gate right at the water's edge, and watched the fireworks explode above. It was a good show. And then back to the house for smores, sparklers and roman candles. I topped off the evening by getting Tim to swing with me in the 20 year old hammock, purchased long ago in Puerto Rico. It didn't break out from under us - what more could you want?

I also got a chance to take Tim out to Washington Island on the Island Clipper on the 6th, and we spent the rest of the time just lazing around.

On the 7th we drove over to La Crosse for some time with Grandma and Grandpa and Uncle Emery, who is in town. Yesterday Grandma, Sara, Tim and I drove out to Maiden Rock to visit Grandma Pat, and then we chowed down at the creamery at Nelson. Man, their food is good. Their cheese curds and ice cream are GREAT. So delicious.

Today it's off for a day of manis and pedis with Aunt B, and then everyone is reconvening at Famous Daves to eat. Hooray!

Pictures to follow...