4/16/18 Chronicles



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  Monday 4/9/18

Chicago in snowStill in Chicago! David went to his conference while I slept in. He phoned me about 10:30. I was going to take a shower, but we never had the room made up yesterday, so there were no towels. Oh, well...

Last night it was cold, even though I had the heat cranked up to 80. This morning it felt warm, so I turned the heat off, but it was pretty cold outside-- in the low 30's and still snowing.

We went to lunch at an Indian restaurant called India House, about 10 minutes' walk, but we took a Lyft because it's very cold and snowing. David was wearing his suit, so he was colder than me. I brought my long underwear!

India House was pretty good. It's not the best Indian place we've been to. However, it was mostly gluten free, so that's why I chose it. The only things I couldn't eat were the naan bread and the samosas. A lot of it was way too spicy for me, though. They had this sag paneer with corn. It was really yummy. Unfortunately, David forgot to ask about nuts, and several of the dishes had cashews, so he got a little sick. Not too bad, fortunately. The service was excellent. (It was too cold to take photos!!)

We stopped at Fado again to get warmed up. I had part of a hot chocolate. There was a chatty guy there who told us about a lunch place called Billy Goat's. It's the place that the old SNL sketches "cheeseborger, cheeseborger" was based on. We might have to check that out. It's not too far from our hotel. (We didn't go...hopefully we can next time!)

We took another Lyft back to the hotel, but our Lyft driver seemed more like a bad cab driver. We had a lot of trouble understanding him. The GPS was not working so well down in the tunnels here, so he kept having trouble finding our hotel. He claimed to have lived here 35 years, yet he relied way too heavily on the GPS. He claimed that he'd never been to our hotel. I felt bad for him because he was so flustered. Luckily, we were in no rush because it took awhile. Meanwhile, it kept snowing. I didn't give him too bad of a rating...but fortunately, most of our Lyft drivers have been outstanding.

We stopped at the bar/restaurant to get me a soda and some water to take back to the room. I'm surprised I haven't gotten sick yet from the food we had at the buffet in Shreveport. Maybe Ishave foie gras appetizer got lucky!

It stopped snowing in the afternoon, unfortunately. I had a nice nap, and it's still pretty cold.

Later on, we went out to dinner at a really fantastic restaurant called Bellemore. I spent a lot of time online yesterday looking for possible gluten free restaurants. David mentioned earlier that he wanted a particular dish that he'd had before at one of the Greek restaurants here. Unfortunately, that restaurant has closed down, and I couldn't find that dish at any other Greek restaurant. However, they did have it at Bellemore's, which is not a Greek restaurant. It's just a fine dining place (upscale American food) with fabulous food. I mean, I'm not exaggerating when I say that this was one of the best meals we've ever had. And you know us, we eat out a lot, and we travel a ciderlot. It had really great service and wine, too.

Our server was a handsome young man that reminded me a little bit of Joel McHale. He said that almost any of the dishes could be made gluten free (music to my ears!).  Last night we had a pinot grigio, which is my favorite, so I picked out a riesling, which is one of David's favorites. The waiter helped us pick one that was the least sweet. It was still pretty sweet, but it was outstanding, very smooth. It was 2010 Joh. Jos. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett. I don't know that much about wines, but we enjoyed it, even if it was a bit overpriced.

I had the most wonderful appetizer I've ever had in my life. Again, I'm notfootprints in the snow kidding. It was more like a dessert. It was shaved foie gras over yogurt, almonds and berries. Oh, my god. It was melt-in-your-mouth wonderfulness. It wasn't a small dish, either. There was plenty of it. Then I had duck for the main course, and it was really good. It came with mushrooms. Even those were delicious, and I'm not a big mushroom fan. The sauces on it were great. I wasn't going to have dessert, but I had to because everything here was so good. I had a chocolate pudding dish that was spectacular.  David really liked what he had, too (the cod) and he had some of my duck, too.  Then if all that peach martiniwasn't good enough, they gave us two little almond cookie/candy things at the end that were just so yummy. I would have bought boxes of those. It was so good, I wish I could eat three times as much as I did. I wish I could move there, just to eat at that restaurant regularly.

After that, we went to another pub called D4 and had drinks. I had a very good pear cider. It's from the UK, called Samuel Smiths' Organize Perry Pear Cider. Back at the hotel, we stopped at the 7-11 across the street for some snacks and drinks. We also stopped at the hotel bar for one more drink. They have a really delicious peach martini there that I like.

  Tuesday, 4/10/18

I woke up around 10:30. David was finishing up at his conference. I took a shower, and then we got all of our luggage together. We took two large suitcases, so I put all of the clean clothes in one, and the dirty ones in the other. It works out well that way.me outside our hotel, in the snow I've also learned to bring an extra trash bag or two, just in case I need to separate clean and dirty clothes. One of our suitcases really needs to be replaced. It has a few small tears in it, and the handle doesn't work. I put the clothes in the trash bags, just in case those tears get any bigger.

We checked our bags downstairs, and then we took a Lyft over to D4 to have lunch. They had gluten-free items marked on their menu, which was great. I had the fish tacos. They were pretty good, but a tad dry. I was going to put some sour cream on them, but the waiter forgot to bring it, and we were in a hurry (I had eaten most of it already). We went back fish tacosto our hotel and got our luggage. They had cabs outside, so we took one of those to the airport. I like to prepare. Normally I take my little purse with me everywhere, but I take my large Bag of Holding to the airport. I took the little purse to the Irish pub, but when we got back to the hotel, I quickly packed the items from the little purse into the larger bag (which already hadfront of the Wyndham quite a lot, including my little laptop). Then I put my little purse, my winter hat, scarf and gloves into the outside suitcase pocket. Very efficient ;)

We checked in at American. We always go to the electronic kiosk, but both ways on this trip, the computer didn't ask about our checked bags, so we had to go over to a different desk to have them fix that. I think it was because we were originally flying to American check-inand from Texarkana, and it got switched to Shreveport. We had an elderly lady at the counter, but she got the job done, eventually. I got TSA Pre-Check, but David didn't. However, the Pre-check line was way on the other side of the room, so I just went through David's line instead. They didn't make me take off my shoes, at least, and I got waved through.

We went to our terminal, and now we're sitting around, waiting for our flight, as I type this.

Usually I have no problem remembering to take my pills, but I forgot to take them last night, and also this morning! I will just skip the ones from last night and hope that's OK. I forgot to take the morning ones with breakfast, so I just took them now with a couple of cookies. I will have to take more food later and hopefully it will be OK. I found some great gluten-free cookies (Tate's) at the 7-11 last night. Now you see why I can't lose weight...too much cheating. I suppose that's true for everyone...

Our flight went fine. I slept a lot on both flights. We changed planes again inCharlotte airport Charlotte. They're doing a lot of work on improving their airport, which they need. We took the little flight from there (American Eagle) and they still make you walk up and down the stairs, which seems a bit antiquated. I always worry about slipping off the stairs, carrying all the luggage, especially after sitting so long. My legs get very stiff. I'm old! ;)

Funny thing, both the Charlotte and Chicago airports have pianos in them (at least in our terminals). The Chicago one had a player piano, but the Charlotte one has a real pianist playing, which is neat. Also, both times we went through Charlotte, we were kind of in a rush, and I was tired, so I didn't take many photos.  Anyway, it was nice to be back in the warmer weather of the south.

There were only a few fast food places for us to eat dinner at, so we didn't have much. I was worried about finding something that wouldn't make me sick. I had this little plastic container that had a scoop of tuna fish and two hard boiled eggs. Unfortunately, the tuna was too dry, so I didn't eat most of it. I found some pretty Hampton Inn roomgood gluten free barbecue chips, too.

It was after 10pm when we arrived back in Shreveport. We made reservations this time at the Hampton Inn, so we got their shuttle from the airport. I couldn't convince David to go over to one of the larger casinos to get better food, and gamble a little, so we just went across the street to this store to get some food. They did have a tiny casino with slots, but they were confusing to play, so we didn't stay long.

David went to sleep, but I had to stay up to write my blog/paper for class tomorrow. I finished up about 4am. I wasn't that tired, since I had slept so much on the plane.

  Wednesday, 4/11/18

We woke up around 7 (too early!) and got the luggage together. I went to their free breakfast and brought a little bit of food back to the room. I love Hampton Inn's free breakfast. They had cheese omelets, bacon, waffles, all sorts of stuff. I had the eggs and bacon, some fruit and yogurt. I hope it's gluten free. I forgot to bring my NIMA tester with me on the trip.

I slept a bit on the ride back home. I was very tired. We got home around 9:40, and I went to bed for about an hour. Unfortunately, I kept dreaming that I slept through the alarm, and all sorts of things like that. I did sleep well, though.

Trisha picked me up at the regular time, and she had her husband in the back seat. It was nice to meet him.

I was pretty groggy still from everything. Oh, and most of my clothes are dirty, so I wore light-colored sweat pants, which I don't normally do.Pens, business cards, etc.

When I walked in to Reynolds, I saw that they had a Career Fair going on. One of the ladies I sit with before class said that they give away free stuff, so I went to check it out. I got a lot of pens and business cards for my collections, so that was nice. Most of the job tables were about nursing, insurance or local plants of various kinds. I had some nice chats with the people. It sounds like, if I wanted to quit doing my TV site, I could make money if I wanted to work for the Dallas Police or one of these other companies that I wouldn't necessarily have thought of.

Class was fun but also a bit embarrassing. We always read a summary of our blog for the class. This week we had to critique our classmates' blogs, so it was kind of weird. I was happy that many of the students chose mine. They had some very nice, complimentary things to say about my writing, which made me feel very good! One student said that my writing was inspiring, and another one said that I made them think about things from a different perspective. Awww!

After class, David took me home. He didn't have time today to pick up Brandy. Too bad because I miss her.  I had lunch and then a nap. I was very tired. I slept way too much, though.

I was a little bit sick this afternoon...probably from something I ate at the airport. Still, I went almost a whole week without getting sick, so that was fantastic. We had so much good food in Chicago!

After David got home, I made dinner, and then we watched some of our TV shows that aired while we were gone. I was very relieved that my DVR was not too full after we were gone for so long.

I was planning to do the laundry, but I didn't. I definitely will tomorrow.

I worked on my blog/paper for tomorrow's class and then I worked a little on catching up on my own personal blogs for the weeks of 3/19 and 3/26, which I posted.

I'm having a little trouble adjusting to being back home. It was such a nice trip! I went to bed around 12:30....a bit early for me. I was so tired.

  Thursday, 4/12/18

it's hot againI can't believe that the week is almost over again.

I was very tired all morning, for no particular reason. I had the alarm set for 8:30 but re-set it for 9.

I had called the plumbers to come over today to fix the leak under the sink. I had said to the woman on the phone, "I'll be gone 10-1, and make sure they phone before they come." She promised to let them know. She didn't! They showed up at 9 am. I was barely awake, and not dressed, when I heard them banging on the door. I threw on some clothes and went out to see who was banging on my door. I said, "Sorry, I'm leaving in an hour and I have to take a shower." They said they hadn't been told to call first. I felt like saying, "Um, OK, that's not my problem," but I didn't. I asked if they could come back after 1, so they said they'd have to check with their company.

I was still very groggy and tired all morning, which is not usually the case. Usually, by the time I take my shower and my breakfast, I'm pretty awake.

I was very sick from eating something with gluten...first before class, and then during class. That was not fun. Hopefully it's something that I ate in the airport and not from something I have at home. I try to eat gluten-free completely at home. I don't even have very much food there, since we didn't go to the grocery store this weekend. I've mostly been eating turkey and cheese, which should be safe.

Class was fine, other than my being sick. The professor had a talk last night, with another professor, and some journalists, about Media and Democracy. I would have liked to have gone to hear it, but we were both too exhausted still from traveling. I can watch it on YouTube now, so I might do that this weekend if I get the time!

We picked up Brandy at the vet's, and then David took us home. She'd had a clump behind her ear, but fortunately it was only fur, so they were able to comb it out. It was a big mass, and I was worried that it was some kind of growth.  She was very excited, as always, to come home.  After I put my hair up, we went for a walk. She was pulling more than usual on the leash because of being overly-excited.

My right knee has been bothering me all day, and the walk didn't help it. It's probably bursitis.  When class was over, I stood up, but my right knee gave out on me. I reached with my left hand to catch myself on the desk, but that's still weak, so I fell back into the chair. Thankfully, no one seemed to notice. I felt so old!

I changed into shorts and a tank top, and I put on the a/c because it was in the 80's, and we were hot from our walk. The plumbers showed up a little after 1, and the pest control guy was right behind them. He was supposed to come between 2 and 3, so he asked if he could do his job early. I had no problem with that, of course. 

Turns out the garbage disposal was broken, and that's what was leaking. They went new disposal!to the store and got a new one. The whole thing cost $293. UGH.  At least they did clean it up before they left. The pest control guy, Michael, is very nice. I'm  always glad to see him and chat with him. He loves Brandy (well, everyone does). I tethered Brandy to the treadmill, but she pulled enough to get off of it, twice. After the second time, I just put her in the room like I usually do when I'm gone for the day.  She's usually fine on the tether if we're in the bedroom at night with her, but otherwise she can get loose if she pulls hard enough. It has to do with the leg of the treadmill I tie the chain leash on. I probably should look for another part of the treadmill and see if that works better.

I worked for a while after that, but then I got sleepy. Brandy was snoring next to me, so we moved into the bedroom and took a long nap. She was tired out from all of the excitement! David had a dinner for work, so he came home late, after 7:30.

I made some more lemonade with the last of my lemons...it's so yummy. I don't know why everyone doesn't make it, all the time. My juicer only cost $16, and you could probably get a cheaper one.

I've been straightening up the house, getting ready for Yolanda to come clean tomorrow. I put away all of the knick knacks and most of the other stuff in the master bathroom. I unpacked one of our suitcases and put all that stuff away. I'm sure I'll be up late doing the rest, and the laundry and dishes. I had hoped to also finish putting away the Christmas decorations, but I don't know if I'll have time for that.

Brandy is happy to be home!My knee is really hurting tonight, so I took Aleve. Hopefully it will get rid of the pain. It seems to be throbbing less now, since I took it.

I have tomorrow off, yay! This semester went so fast. Wednesday the 25th is my last day in one class. The other one goes through May 3rd, finals week (even though it's just a blog due and not an exam). I have to remember to get supplies for cookies this weekend! I always make cookies for finals. Maybe next year I'll surprise everyone and make cake! ;)

It should be a nice relaxing weekend, once I get all of the stuff put back after the cleaning. Last time I was so busy and waited way too long to put everything back.

We might go to Little Rock next Friday and spend the night, so that'll be fun.

I stayed up way too late again...it was around 4am. I wasn't that tired, anyway, because I'd slept a long time. I had to get the place ready.

  Friday, 4/13/18

I woke up with the alarm at 8am. UGH. I still had a few things to do before the cleaning lady came, and I wasn't exactly sure when she was coming, so I didn't want to get up any later. I had breakfast and let Brandy out, then put her in the bedroom for a while. After the cleaning lady and her son arrived, I moved to the bedroom with Brandy. I slept for a few more hours. Brandy kept whining and waking me up, though. I put stuff on the other half of the bed to get it out of the way, so sheBrandy asleep on my lap couldn't sleep with me.... Spoiled mutt! :)

I've just been working on catching up with these blogs while I wait for the cleaning lady to do the rest of the house. I'm very tired, though. I've been sort of dozing off and on.  We moved out to the living room so they could clean the master bedroom, but I had to keep a tight leash on Brandy. I should have tethered her a little better...I was just too tired to go to all that trouble. Next time, I will. Or I'll put the bark collar on her. I haven't tried it since I got the new one (I accidentally cut the old one too short when I trimmed it because it was too big). Originally, I got it so I could put Brandy outside while I was gone, but now I'm afraid to, after that time she stabbed her foot and bled all over the place. She could have bled to death while I was gone! Or worse. She digs a lot, but so far she hasn't tried digging by the fence. What if she does and gets out? I would be very upset.

Earlier she stupidly tried to jump on the couch, from the back side! She fell back and was fine, so I laughed. But what if she tried jumping on something else outside and hurt herself? She seems pretty dumb. :)

Brandy asleep on the edge of the couchBrandy was really getting on my nerves today. Too much excitement for her, being at the kennel for a week, then having people in her house for two days in a row and mostly not able to sniff them...after they left, I walked her. It was nice to get out of the house, but she was a little more hyper than usual. The weather was pretty nice, after it stopped raining. There was a lot of traffic, for some reason, for 3:30. I guess everyone must leave work early on Fridays...? Or perhaps they were worried about the oncoming storms (or at least, used them for an excuse!).

David and I went out for dinner at the Japanese place because he wanted sushi. I shouldn't have gone, though. I always get sick after eating there. Next time I won't go, or I'll have him stop by McDonald's or something...  I ran into Kayla, who works in David's office, at the buffet. Very nice woman and she has a cute little girl.

I put just a few of our things back where they belong. I was very tired and went to bed super early, about 8:30pm.

  Saturday, 4/14/18

I slept until about 10:45am, so I got plenty of sleep.Flying Burger

We went to Flying Burger for lunch (one of the few places I'll eat at around here any more, without getting sick). We always like their grilled catfish plate. Then we stopped at Brookshire's as usual, to get a few things.

After we got home, I was sick from yesterday. I laid down for a little while and then did work on my site. I took Brady for a late walk around 6:15.  It was a little chilly and windy outside; I should have worn a jacket or long-sleeved shirt. It made me walk faster!Brandy on my shoulder

We've been listening to music and just relaxing.  Brandy sure enjoys the attention she gets from us...  It was nice having a three day weekend.  Well, only one and a half weeks left for one of my classes, roughly three weeks for the other 2. I am taking one summer class, but it's largely online. It involves taking videos of some sort. It's technically Fundamentals of Digital Cinema, but apparently it depends on who teaches it as to what you learn... the regular Mass Comm professor, Professor Reppert, whom I normally have for most of my classes, is teaching it this summer. We're required to make a certain number of videos from different social media platforms...I don't know all the details yet. Sounds fun, so we'll see.

I really went off my diet while we were on vacation. I'm struggling to get back to it.

I just spent the rest of the evening working on my site and watching TV. I caught up on quite a few things on my site that were overdue, so that's great!

Here are the courses I'm taking part time for my Mass Comm/Mass Media degree. The voice lessons are just for fun. My voice teacher isn't returning this Fall, so if there is no teacher for me, or one I like, then I won't take voice lessons. If they ever get a guitar teacher, I will probably take guitar lessons again. I would love to, in fact!

The second marketing class is not required; the business dean suggested I take it, for my business. The Physical Geography class and labs are the only classes I have to take for the General Education requirements. Everything else I took the first time around back in the 1980's at Stony Brook. I took two biology classes there, but they didn't have labs and don't satisfy Arkansas' state requirement.

The first three semesters here I've already taken, obviously.

(subject to course time conflicts)

2017 Spring
MM 3123 Internet Communication
MM 3223 Trends in Modern Media
MAVC 3001 Voice lessons

2017 Fall
MCOM 1003 Intro to Mass Comm
MCOM 2133 Basic Digital Photography
MM 3103 Principles of PR
MAVC 3001 Voice lessons

2018 Spring
MM 3603 Directed Study in Mass Media II: Video Present and Future
MCOM 4003 Media Law and Ethics
MAVC 3001 Voice lessons


2018 Summer
DC 2333 Fundamentals of Digital Cinema

2018 Fall
MM 2003 Reporting and Reading for the Mass Media
MKTG 3033 Principles of Marketing
MAVC 3001 Voice lessons

2019 Spring
ENGL 3003 Advanced Composition
MM 3503*** Directed Study in Mass Media I
MAVC 3001 Voice lessons

2019 Fall
MM 4123 International Mass Media
GEOG 1003 Physical Geography and lab
MAVC 3001 Voice lessons

2020 Spring
SPCH 3123 Advanced Public Speaking
Lab Chem 1013 or PHSC 2023/2021
MAVC 3001 Voice lessons

2020 Summer
MM 4913 Mass Media Internship (newspaper)

2020 Fall
MKTG 4053 Integrated Marketing Communications
MPRO 4342 Senior Capstone
MAVC 3001 Voice lessons

  Sunday, 4/15/18

It's chilly today... in the 50's and windy. It feels more like late February than mid-April.  Yet it will get up to the 80's on Tuesday and we'll have nice weather in the 70's the rest of the week.

I stayed up way too late, until about 5 am. David woke me around 11, so I jumped in the shower and got ready. We ate lunch at El Compadre, and then we went to Wal-Mart for shopping. I wanted to get my hair cut, but the wait was too long.

It was funny this morning. The dog always wakes me up around 8 am, and I let her off her tether and let her jump on the bed with me. When David came in, he sat on the bed and the dog was very excited. She started jumping all over me to get to him, licking me in the face, etc. It was very funny and cute.

Don't forget to check out my many photos and videos on my Instagram!

After we got back from the store, and I rested a little bit, I took Brandy for her walk. Still way too cold and windy out there. Nice in the sun, though. After my body cooled off from the walk, I put the heat on because it's too chilly in our house.

I don't remember if I already said this or not, but our two neighbors finally got around to taking their Christmas wreaths down! I think it was a few weeks ago.

I spent a lot of time this weekend, catching up on the shows I recorded while we were gone...while I did work, of course. I hope next week I can get back to my diet and also my routine of keeping up my routine and schedule (for diabetes testing, doing my singing exercises, etc.) and finally put my Christmas decorations away!

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