Dropped Chris off this early AM at the Grand Rapids airport. The whole area is still torn up, like it has been for the last several years. I dont know that all the construction is related. Maybe they were a bunch of small little projects that just happened to go nearly back to back. All I know is that I've been seeing orange cones there since shortly after I moved out to this area.

This time though, even in the dim light of the non-existent 5:30am sun, you couldn't help but notice a mega parking structure. Its apparently part of their Ramp Up project.

So here's a shot the weird wave metal structure that's above the terminal drop off (and last I knew pick up) area. Looks like a sky-walk exists now to connect to the mega parking structure.

I have to ask - does GRR really get THAT much overnight parking? I really didn't think so. Guess I was wrong.

I also snagged a shot of some blue lights (runway lights?) that I thought were pretty snazzy. For whatever reason ever since I was a kid I was obsessed with blue Christmas lights on a tree (vs the other solid sets we had, and eventually, the multi-color strings).

Never made ravioli before, so tonight I committed to doing so. Originally I was just going to do a simple stove top deal, but the more I thought about it the more I was like "dude, baked in the stove would be fun."

Of course I was totally only going to make enough for two people and ended up using two jars of spaghetti sauce and over a pound of noodles.

I have a problem..

This Monday was a quiet day. Not a whole lot of loud activity at work, not much going on at home. Very fitting for the weather this morning which was chilly and rainy (and exactly what you think of when you think fall weather, right?).

Unfortunately I'm also a little off. I'm not sure if its the food I ate, the antibiotics I'm on, or just the weather but I'm tired and well, experiencing intermittent waves of nausea.

The upside is I get bonding time with the cat. Downside? I'm just making the other days of the week longer to make up for leaving early today.

So here's a picture of me working on homework between naps. Yes, deer in headlights look because I forgot how bright that damn flash was.

Kicked off Sunday around 5pm... It was a lazy day, but good. Eventually though, we needed to get out. So Chris and I headed to downtown Grand Rapids to check out the ArtPrize event that is running until 10/10.

We missed the paper airplane event, but have heard from various sources that it was somewhat of a disappointment. We did, however, stumble across a bunch of other things including; photo tiles created from earth, various sculptures (including some out of shrubbery), the popular Nessy, and more.

It was a good stroll around, though we quickly discovered that much of downtown Grand Rapids businesses were closed up - despite their being a rather large number of people wandering around...

My ten year high school reunion was tonight. Since I was going to be in town anyway, I figured I'd stop at my parents house and do a belated birthday celebration for both myself and my mom.

Chris and I headed to my parent's house, I dropped off a pc for my little bro, picked up gifts, socialized with people, got dressed, and headed out my reunion.

The event was at Via Nove, which is in downtown Ferndale. I convinced Kati to come to it so we could hang out, see people, see if anything interesting was going on, and in general be mildly social. So she and John came and we spent much of the evening up in the balcony of the restaurant as we waited a smidge to late to find a table. Alan came out as well, dressed in riding leathers and armed with a rather expensive digital SLR. He snapped a lot of photos and toward the end of the night was dancing the evening away.

For a portion of the night, while Kati and I were wandering back and forth between the bathroom, going outside, and drinking, John and Chris chatted away.

Much appreciation to Chris for driving me home, in the dense fog, at like 1am.

So yesterday we finally found a dress for me, and today we ran up to Woodland mall to snag Chris a shirt before heading out to the movies (Surrogates) and meeting up with one of his co-workers.

Here's a shot of Chris walking the aisle of shirts, neatly organized into cubes by colors and sizes.

Dunno why, but I always thought it was cool looking as a kid.

So my 10 year reunion is this Saturday. And I dont really own anything that would be appropriate. My clothing range is between jeans to casual work attire. I dont really like shopping for clothes - so I dont really have a lot.

So Chris and I spent 2 hours wandering around searching for a dress for me to wear. During the running in and out of stores, I saw this crazy candy and had to snap a photo.

So weird....so wrong to do to candy.

I have a bunch of old PCs and parts lying around and have been promising my brother for the better part of 6 months I'd get around to fixing one up. So today on my lunch break I started to work on a PC, finally resolving to part with the AMD 3000+ with SATA. Realistically, I'm not going to use it and he will.... Not like its badass or anything.

Of course 1/2 way through the process I realized I had harvested some parts from it - like the dvd burner - and gave some to my cousin Daniel. I, in turn, took his burner which I was going to see if I could fix because the tray wont open. I popped in a really, REALLY old dvd-rom I had lying around the apparently wont read the OS disk...

So much for starting to load Windows.... And I suppose I should clean all that dust out too...


Tonight was another girls night at Monterrey Grille in Caledonia. This time the group got even larger, including Terese-Ann (which may totally be spelled wrong but is on the L of the pic) and Sherry to our already existing Shelly, Wendy, and Val group.

The night was good but I have to remind myself to never over a Sangria there again. I should know better, as this is the second time I've done it. Last time the Sangria came back as just house red wine with some pineapple. Ok....I can drink that. This time it came with every fruit they could find, including canned peaches and a lemon wedge. Now while I could see having peaches in Sangria, I could not see having lemon wedges/slices....

The food was good, as it always is, and the company intriguing.

I look forward to the next girls night in November.

So the 21st marks my official birthday and I celebrated it with my cousins Dan and Sherry, with whom I have a standing Monday night tradition, and Chris.

Daniel bought me dinner at Moes and the four of us munched on tasty food, swapping stories and enjoying the nice weather outside. They gave me a cute card (<3) and now I can official have yummy breakfast from Mr Burger and drink tasty Hot Caramel Cider from Biggby's.

We then headed back to Dan & Sherry's to hang out and catch up on life for the rest of the evening.

I regret not snapping more photos with my phone. :/

When women have babies, they have baby showers. So for Sherry's second child her co-worker Deb wanted to throw a baby shower. It was a small, intimate affair with tasty food and an adorable meow meow (Tiger) who got into trouble (not unlike my own Leki would have).

Early on it was discovered that Natalie, like her mother, is allergic to cats. So Natalie, Grandma, and Sherry's sister left early to take babysit Natalie while the rest of the party went on.

It was a nice afternoon, full of games, goofy times, and massive cake slices (see that cake? 1/2 of it was gone after 5 of us ate slices...). Sherry walked away with some nice gifts and Amanda and I managed to snag some not so shabby prizes.

Thanks Deb for putting this together for Sherry. :)

Posted via email from Jennifer's posterous

Posted via email from Jennifer's posterous

This Saturday Chris and I celebrated my birthday, since it falls on a Monday this year. I'm not going to lie, I'm not accustomed to being the center of attention for birthdays as an adult - and most of mine have been rather lackluster (which is what happens when you get older and this is not a complaint). Well he was rather determined to make it not suck.

So first were the balloons, as seen above and decorated with cute phrases. There was even an orange balloon with Leki drawn on it. birthday banner he put up in his apartment across the hallway. He cooked me tasty breakfast and we watched amusing tv shows for part of the day and took me out to dinner in the evening. As if this wasn't enough, he bought me a hilarious card I couldn't stop snickering at. I forgot to snap a shot (will have to and upload it to flickr) but its a my little pony card that speaks to you. Seriously - I kept playing with it. Very funny. And, like a man who knows me and thought about the gift, I got computer hardware. GoGo terabyte external HDD. Hawt. Very hawt.

And of course there was cake. I mentioned the tasty cake Kati used to get from a Mexican Town bakery that had jelly filling between the layers, and Chris snagged the closest thing he could find. It was good. He even made me wear a hat and sang happy birthday to me.

Very good day.

After work today I headed over to the Woods to hang with Melissa and catch up. It was a pretty fun night and we talked about a whole range of stuff.

There was an interesting one man show for much of the evening I was there (the 80's band moved in as I was leaving) and he was pretty amusing.

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Yes, I know its not my birthday today...but in the mail there was this sexy birthday coupon from Biggby's. They also recently started serving their Hot Caramel Cider for the season. Coincidence? I think not! So I headed down to the Biggby's near my apartment to snag a free drink.

The first time I ever had one I was living in Lansing with my cousins, and their roommate Ashley introduced me to it. I'm not a huge fan of coffee, and at that point had never even been in a coffee house (or heard of Biggby as it was called then - Beaner's). The drink was tasty and I've been hooked for 5 years.

For whatever reason I've never been able to make the drink quite as good as theirs.

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So I finally tried a rather unholy creation - habanero + chocolate. I'll eat some spicy food, and I have a love of chocolate so when my parents gave me this bar of chocolate I was hesitant but willing to try it.

Unless you like the sweet taste of chocolate to be associated with your tongue on fire - dont eat it.

Also yesterday - and completely unrelated to chocolate - I noticed that the car charger I have for my pre lights up yellow. Well, for some odd reason the Fusion comes with this goofy ambient lighting. So I had to see if I could make them match. Not quite, but its something. So in the photo you see the yellow surrounding the Sprint swirl and to the right the yellowish rings that surround the cup holders. There are lights on the floor by all the seats too (back included) and you can change them from red, yellow, blue, orange, etc etc.

I still cant quite figure out why its there. But I know Sherry likes it. :)

This Tuesday was full of critters asking for attention. First I came home to be greeted by the ever adorable Peppy, peering out of her cage.

On lunch there was a hungry cat stalking me (the diet is killing him - or so he constantly tells me through his behavior).

When I arrived home I was assaulted again by Leki while I tried to play some Metroid Prime 3 on the Wii and prep dinner for Chris and I.

Like last time, the meatballs came out a little too large so a recipe that is supposed to yield 70 yielded 30ish... oops. But they were tasty none the less (no thanks to the tasty cream sauce from Ikea my parents gave me on their last visit).

Anyway, here's a shot of the meatballs I took after eating them. This time around I made them with turkey and pork vs beef and pork. With the sauce and egg noodles they were pretty tasty. Yay for getting recipes from overseas!

Went over to Shelly's tonight to do a little tech support on her PC. Its got a lot of issues that have been building slowly and its a little difficult to disentangle everything at once....

So while I was there we caught up on things and spent time with their kitties. She also showed me her engagement ring as she's recently become engaged to her new mans. Maverick also showed me Little Big Planet on their PS3 (pictured left).

I'm leaving the posterous post on here (below) since I was messing around while I was there on the phone and posted it to this blog.

Cute little blue-eyed kitty of Shelly's. Very laid back, lets me pet and handle him without protest.

Posted via email from Jennifer's posterous

Had a picnic in the park (Ken-O-Sha park to be specific) with Sherry, Natalie, and Chris. We snagged some tasty food from Bagel Beanrey, which Sherry had suggested (Asiago Chicken & Bacon sandwich was tasty).

We sat around, caught up on things, then wandered through the path at the park and looked at nature. There are some benches conveniently located along the path if you have never been there.

All in all it was a relaxing Sunday afternoon

Today is the first Saturday of the new semester. And I have no classes. Its been since the first week of January where I did not have a class scheduled on a Saturday - and it is glorious. Having a free day really gives you a lot of freedom to do stuff. Run errands, visit friends in Detroit, lay around and watch TV, play video games...

So this Saturday for my lazy thing (after getting homework for Sunday and other things out of the way), Chris and I watched some Chris Rock HBO specials and chowed on tasty left over pizza.

So here's a shot of Leki and Chris (on his snazzy Linux netbook) chilling on the couch doing the relaxing normal Saturday thing. Leki slept most of the day I think.

Fridays are great. They mark the end the work week, the beginning for some relaxation time. So what better day than a Friday to get out nasty vet appointments? Leki was not amused. Still he's vaccinated (needs a booster in 3 weeks) and micro-chipped. Now if he punches out of a screen and runs off to chase birds there may be a chance for recovery.

In addition I finally got the USB external hard drive configured and working properly with the sync system. Hawt. 117gb of music GO!

This Friday a Farscape event was planned with Amanda and Chris. Amanda and I have both seen the series and Chris is new to it. So we made up home made pizza and chowed down during 4 hours of Farscape.

Pictured here is the tasty chicken pesto alfredo Amanda concocted. Also checked out Founder's attempt to replace Rubaeus (which is a raspberry beer) called Cerise. Not bad, provided you like Cherries.

Does this image look like a kid sketched it? Good, cause one did (albeit an adult "kid").

Today is my mom's birthday. Normally it wouldn't be a big deal and I wouldn't say much, but this year she moves out of one decade and into another.

I had hoped, planned, plotted to do something fun for this birthday, but a quick vacation my parents set up (are you avoiding attention on this mom?) plus working during the week prevents me from doing anything too crazy.

So this is the best I can offer. A terribly sketched note (a real card is in the mail - I totally bought one this year!) and acknowledgement of the birthday here is all I can do to embarrass a little (though I did think about getting shit ordered and put all over your lawn briefly...).

I know you just caught up reading this 365 thing mom, so it may be a few days till you see this but...

-you know you're a great mom (or damn well should) and I'm happy to have you as a friend
-thanks for always giving good advice and playing devil's advocate to get me to think outside of my perspective
-thanks for always grounding me in reality
-thanks for putting up with all my mistakes, letting me make them so I learn and grow
-thanks for everything you ever did (and will do ;) ) with the ferrets

Alright, this is about as sappy as I can go. You get the point.

Today was the first day *I* had classes for the new semester and since I work full time, this class is at night.

Its been a while since I've taken classes in the evening and its a different crowd from the weekend crew.

Fun first class with a pretty amusing banter for 3 hours. I look forward to more, despite it being a dry subject matter.

So here is a shot of the parking structure at night after class was over.

Went over to Kent Trails to bike it only to discover the trail had been torn up sometime between Saturday and today....

Attempting to update this via email from my palm pre. Here's hoping this update takes...unlike the last few I attempted.

Its nice to have the day after a trip be downtime as opposed to returning to work or school. So Monday was my downtime (ty parents) and I was able to organize stuff, snuggle with the cat, do laundry, and laze around.

My dad gave me an extra wireless router so here is Chris setting up a guest network at my apartment.

My dad's side of the family is small. He is an only child and his father had 3 sisters, all of whom only had one child. The last remaining relative of my grandfather's generation is my great aunt Margaret.

When I was a kid she was awesome. She remembered every birthday, every holiday, always sent gifts and was always very kind and loving each time we saw her (which was rather infrequent as she lived in Washington, PA and we did not go there often).

The thing with childhood is that you eventually grow out of it and the fond memories you have of some of your relatives you see infrequently is sometimes overwritten with new great memories, or shocking realizations of things you never noticed as a child. This trip was filled with both.

It was great to see my great aunt and it was great to get home. The majority of the trip I spent sitting in the back seat of my parents car, being carted around like when we were children.

The trip was worth it. Jeff and I got to catch up on things and I enjoyed his company. Amusing jokes and "threats" from my parents. At the very least I'm glad I get along with my family so much better now and there are no awkward situations in which they attempt to "parent" me.

Its been ages since I've been to Washington, PA (ok, maybe since 2000) and since Batman Returns was in theatres that I went with the whole family. So this weekend the whole family and I headed down to Washington to visit my great aunt Margaret.

The first day we drove down and wandered around some cemeteries, stopped at my great aunts house (she doesnt live there but still owns the house and it needs work) and other various things. The parents wanted some shots of a few headstones so I did that and messed around a bit.

I've taken a lot of shots and uploaded them (random restaurant stops, goofy activity, etc etc), which can be found on flickr here. This shot right here is of an aging headstone in the Immaculate Conception Cemetery in Washington, PA. Catholic - can you guess by the name?

Days off can be great and with taking classes on weekends, precious. So with downtime on Friday I was sure to savor it.

The day started off with a tasty prepared breakfast, bled into a relaxing morning and eventually a trip out to Siedman Park.

Originally the plan was to take shots of ants, and after I get a free moment to edit some shots and upload them to flickr, there will be some. But some other shots ended up taking less touch ups, if any. So here's a shot of the turtle on the path and an even closer of the reptiles head can be found here.

Meeting up with old co-workers can always be fun. Its been hard to find a time and day that works for everyone since the main group splintered apart earlier this year, so today was the first time I've seen the whole group in months (whereas we used to do monthly, at least, drinks nights).

Wet over at Cascade Sports Bar, which is across the street from the Sprint office. Tim was in town so we used that as an excuse to get together.

So pictured here are Shawna and Tim, scoping out everyone's phones (the whole group now works for 3 different cell phone providers) and catching up on things.

Wednesday has been a good day. Got some grocery shopping done, errands run, and cooked a tasty new recipe, Beef & Noodles.

I'm not going to lie, I was rather negligent today in my photo taking, however. I only snapped a shot of these Lays Stax I snagged for Chris and one of the cat assaulting my necklace on my neck after I got out of the shower.

I opted for the Stax shot as opposed to one of my toweled rack...

So this Tuesday was the first of the month and in keeping with recent tradition, I met up with Shelly, Wendy, and our newest edition Valerie.

So we hung out for a few hours, discussed various topics ranging from benign issues to very sensitive, inappropriate topics. All in all it was a great night and a lot of fun.

There was even cheesecake involved! YUM!