26 July 2005

What's in Your Bag?

I clocked out today and exited the Y to find that it was raining. at a good clip. Not pouring or raining cats & dogs, but a steady fall of rain. Now, in case you didn't know, I've been biking to work the last couple weeks and leaving my car in the Y's parking lot since my city parking sticker has expired & I didn't want to pay for a new one since I'm leaving in a few days. (Dara, has been parking her car in the private parking lot at her apartment but got stung yesterday when she parked it in front of the Y while working out. A $120 ticket was waiting for her on her return.) SO, driving home was not an option, and I considered going back into the Y and working out for an hour or so, but I wasn't up for that, so I strapped on my helmet and pedaled off into the grey. After a couple blocks it wasn't too bad, I was thoroughly soaked by then, so I actually enjoyed it. A couple small scares, complete with wet bike brakes squawking, my back tire doing a little fish-tail wiggle, car brakes giving a quick skritch after thier operator's paniced reaction after not seeing me tell the last second (luckily, I recognized that they didn't see me long before). But it really was kind of fun. Water running off my elbows, road grime splattered in a stripe up my waist and back of my shirt/backpack, splashing through puddles, etc. And then getting home, peeling off the wet rags and jumping in the shower. Nice. After the shower I emptied out my backpack to wash it and let some things dry, which brings me to "What's in Your Bag?". InStyle, I think, sometimes has a little piece like this where they ask a celeb what's in their bag. While I'm no celeb, I do have to say that my backpack is full of fun things, and I am a HUGE fan of lists, so here goes. It's contents are as follows, and divided by pouch:
Large pouch - 1 Franklin planner (black), 1 bike helmet, 1 tshirt & 1 pair of short for working out, 1 tshirt I'm having my campers sign
Medium pouch - 1 pair wrist straps for weight-lifting, 1 travel size stick of Adidas deodorant, 1 deck of playing cards, 1 tube of Coppertone Sunblock spf 50, 1 Nalgene water bottle, 2 children's educational items I got for free today at the Y, 1 pair of swimming trunks (damp from swimming today)
Small pouch - 1 cell phone, 1 Guinness bottle opener, 1 small clutch mirror, 7 Crayola fabric markers for kids to sign shirt, 1 pack of Extra gum Wildberry flavor, 1 ticket stub from Chicago White Sox game field trip, 1 Sharpie, 17 sticks of Extra gum Cool Green Apple flavor (free giveaways at the Y), 1 tube of Udderly Smooth hand cream
Tiny pouch - money clip (holding credit cards & ID but no cash), 1 tube of Carmex, 1 Chicago Public Library card, 24 cents in change, 1 pair of sterile latex-free gloves, 5 alcohol preps, 2 band-aids
Oh, and on the outside of my bag - 2 D-clips, holding my Y id, a rosary ring and a couple plastic-string tying projects.

There you have it. My life in a backpack. Sort of Mary Poppins'-ish. What's in yours?

25 July 2005


I will give you a run down of all the fun I have had visiting Connie, Steve and Abba over a long weekend. Thursday I got there early, like 11:00 and Connie was printing out our agenda and maps and places of interest. There were mulitple copies of the agenda and 6 numbered sequencial maps from map quest in a folder for the direction guide which was yours truly. We had soup at New Pi and then tea at Annette's as she was off on a vacation day that day too!! We ate at Connie's that evening with Annette again.Salmon and Black bean/mango salad. Up early Friday and off to Dubuque to see Abba's group compete in the last day Olympics at Loras All-Sports Camp. We did this all morning in very hot conditions but Dubuque had so many trees and shade it didn't seem so bad. At noon Connie and I ate at Cafe Manna something. Had the most wonderful woodfired Pizza I have ever tasted. THin crust and pest instead of tomato sauce. After lunch we went to the Aboretum which was fantastic. We had umbrellas for the sun and needed them as it was easy 100 degrees. We also tried a place I found on the internet called Ewe Need Yarn but it turned out to be Ewe Need to be on the Internet shop-ha. Besides a mean junkyard dog thought about eating me-even when he was inside I was scared, when the owner who could barely hold him back came to the door and said come on in I said no thank you. We went to get Abba and went to Galena to a bead shop for Abba and also found a whole shop of stuff from Provence, France. Abba bought some fabric here for a quilt that was designed by an artist and the owners only spoke French and talked to Abba the whole time in French, even I could see the lady was Hoity- Toity and I loved it
when Abba said immediately outside to me, "That lady was a bitch." We didn't tell Connie as she wanted Abba to get the experience!! Across the street was a wonderful yarn store I just stumbled onto. Nice owner that gave me 2 free patterns. I did buy a great shawl book. The yarn was outta sight, Dara when you need to go there for supplies or whatever -take me- I loved this shop. Abba went back to Loras and Connie and I ate at The Irish Cottage. Tourist place but the gift shop was real Irish stuff. Nice food great Fairy Ring outback. We stayed at a dive in Dubuque but that was okay. Off to Madison the next morning in a huge downpour to go to the biggest Farmer's Market in the Midwest, Madison was very interesting and nice. Ate at a Nepalese Restaurant, called Chatara. Tasted like Indian food to me. I loved it. Then we stopped at a Custard Ice Cream place Connie couldn't do without. 10 miles later we went to the Mt. Horeb Mustard Museum. 2,500 kinds of mustard. Fun, fun here and you could taste any mustard you wanted on the shelf on a pretzel. After going from custard to mustard so quickly Connie's stomach hurt. Back to Iowa City. Sunday mass for me , second hand furniture store and watched Lance!!--:) Rested then made tarts with all the fruits Connie bought-Red Currant with pastry cream. Abba showed Annette and I her pictures and gave us a great travelogue on the flat screen computer. Cool, cool and really cool. I am sure she will want to share with you all. Went for a walk and came back drenched even at 8:30. Watched a very good movie called Cinema Paradiso, Italian film that is wonderful. It was a little long but worth it. It is a little racy for you guys (:)) but good.. Try it out . Went shopping for a short time with Connie and Abba and came on home today. It was so fun.. So much going on compared to here!! But got some good titles for books and films. I will share later.

Hot, Hot, Hot

102 degrees yesterday, hottest day in a decade here. Heat index around 107. And Dara & I were out in it from 10:30 til 5. Good news for those helping with the moving on Thursday and Friday, forecasted highs are 82 and 80.

We've got a computer down!

Dara's power cord for her laptop is kaput, and the laptop can not function on its battery (thereby making it a desktop PC, not a laptop) so I am limited in my internet time to before & after work here at the Y. So I apologize for the decrease in postings. Once I am up and running on MY computer in DSM, watch out!

Lance does it


Went to Niketown and checked out the 10//2 gear. Cool stuff, but there was no balloons, no signs, no fanfare for his seventh win! We asked the worker and he said they were printing all the signage and shirts up and it should be in place by Wednesday. Boo, Nike, Boo. I expected better. The guy won by 4:40 for crying out loud! Maybe we'll have to swing by when Emily & Eron are here on Thursday.

20 July 2005

New priest/jokester in Shen

from Mom-

Well, today I went to St. Mary's in Shen for mass as none this week at St. Pat. A new priest from North Dakota is there for a year. I heard(gotta love the grapevine in a small town) he had jokes and was "different" . He kissed a 90 year old woman on the way out of mass on Sunday.!! I almost burst out laughing after 3 minutes into mass. He is very sing songy and "UP?" . Tells jokes, very old ones, and is a little ...hmm... strange?... at times but genuinely seems very kind and fun loving. He gave a good homily and wants to do great things in my opinion. Like have mass at the nursing homes! I love this, I do not think the church does enough with old people wheather they are in their home or a nursing home. He also said he will go to lots of sporting events so look for him. When the mass ended he said a few more nice things then greeted us all very warmly at the back. He is into loving every glorious moment we are here. so when I shook his hand he said,"Top of the Morning darling"I smiled and said I was from St. Pat's and was he Irish? Irish and German he said. He said he'd like to come up to St. Pat's for a visit, especially on St. Paddy's. I said ooh, yes we have fun and he went into gales of laughter saying, :Yes, yes, yes," I think he totally understood! What a scream, hope Shenandoah is ready for this guy-:)

10//2 Nike and Lance's Collection

I saw some sweet shoes from lance and nike and found out there is a whole line coming out. Check out www.wearyellow.com takes awile to load, but one of my favorite sites, surf here awhile, the stories are amazing. Also www.niketown.com has the whole line. Hey Jake also Niketown in Chicago. Go Lance!!

The 10//2 Collection from Lance Armstrong and Nike
Tuesday June 28, 11:18 am ET
Footwear and Apparel Line Brings New Life to LIVESTRONG Campaign

BEAVERTON, Ore., June 28 /PRNewswire/ --
On October 2, 1996, cyclist Lance Armstrong was diagnosed with cancer. As he explained, "it was the day I started to live." After a year of celebrating his LIVESTRONG way of life through the sale of 50 million distinctive yellow wristbands, which raised $50 million for the Lance Armstrong Foundation, Nike and Lance have teamed to give the campaign a new direction.

The 10//2 Collection from Nike is a line of lifestyle and performance product that is inspired by Lance Armstrong's celebration of life. Offering a variety of high performance technical cycling wear and lifestyle products, the 10//2 Collection celebrates the two sides of Lance -- the fanatically driven and the totally casual -- while acknowledging the significance of that day.

Of course, yellow plays a pivotal role in the 10//2 Collection. Yellow is Lance's color -- the color of the jersey he's won a record six times, and the color that has come to stand for the hope he shares with cancer patients around the world through his foundation. Nike integrated yellow throughout the line by incorporating a yellow band on each product. The Lance Armstrong Foundation will continue to receive $1.00 for each 10//2 Collection item sold.

The 10//2 Collection can be purchased online at www.wearyellow.com and www.niketown.com. It is available in full distribution beginning July 2, at NikeTown, Nordstroms, Finish Line and specialty cycling shops nationwide. The line ranges in prices from $20 to $100.

In addition to signature 10//2 Collection caps, 10//2 messenger bags, 10//2 hoodies, 10//2 tees, "Good Days/Great Days" tees, and 10//2 polos for men and women, the line includes distinctive performance apparel, including: A Dri-FIT Waffle Half-Zip, Dri-FIT Waffle short, and Dri-FIT Waffle Pant for men; Dri-FIT Sport Bra, Temp Track short and Dri-FIT Slacker Jacket for women.

Footwear includes the Nike Free 5.0 (men/women, the Air Zoom Miler (men/women), the Nike Free Trainer 5.0 (men), the Air Zoom Infiltrator (men), the Benassi LA Slide (men), and the Pazura Thong (women).

19 July 2005

We learned how to knit today at Y camp. Here is my first attempt at it. I really enjoyed learning how to do it. The tension on your thread is key! And I am having some difficulties with my edges (end of rows). Posted by Picasa


I can't believe this. Today after mass I went to get sweet corn. Of course I went to Martin's pickup out front of Hy-Vee. I saw Peggy was running the show for a few hours so we talked. She said her kids were running the sweet corn operation again. Tom and Jim took a heaped up pickup to Storm Lake on Sat and sold $ 800.00 worth that day. An average day outside Hy-Vee was 400.00 she said then whatever is left Hy-Vee buys!! Of course Jim Martin works there at Hy-Vee. I bought 6 ears. And Peggy gave me 7 I saw when I got home, a nice touch. A dozen ears is 4.00- The grandkids she said like to run the show this year too, great cash. Think of that money, yea it is only 3-4 weeks if you plant the corn right but it would be worth it still. She said they pick the night before by driving the pickup right down the rows and pickers putting it directly into the bed of the pickup. Man , a great side cash crop, Luke, you could have your books paid for in a few days. Of course you have to have a farm to plant the corn. They have worked hard to make a good name for themselves. I can testify the corn was perfect and tasty.

18 July 2005

Whole Foods coming to Omaha (regency)

No stores in Iowa, but there will be 1 in omaha in fall '05. You'll have to compare to Wild Oats and let us know who the organic food provider of choice by omahans is!


An interesting article from the Wall Street Journal with some Chicago tie-ins. I have to agree that this product would be best suited for places that are focusing on pouring a lot of beers & not on quality or ambience. If I am going to pay $5 for a Belgian ale, I enjoy watching the server pour it and see the foam develop, etc. If I am standing in a line 10 people deep in 95 degree heat at a street fest or ballgame, I would love to get my plastic cup of domestic beer quicker.


This is from an email from Steve, I hope he doesn't mind that I am sharing it. I don't have his original email that solicited people's opinions & thoughts on the final Star Wars film and on the ranking of the six films, and stacking them up against the Lord of the Rings and the Matrix trilogies and if there are any other trilogies that rank as highly. Here is my brief reply...

first thing i realized while i tried to determine my 'favorite' among the SW films, is that i really need to rewatch the original trilogy again soon. that said, here goes...i think my #1 would be 'Empire Strikes Back'. I love the contrasting environments, the ice-world of Hoth, the swamp of Dagobah, and the atmospheric Cloud City.
Sci/Fi trilogies....Star Trek is the only one I can think of, but I don't feel it ranks with Matrix or Lord of the Rings. The only other trilogy that I can think of that ranks near that type of greatness would be the Godfather movies.

And here is Steve's reply...

I think that ESB is the best of the first trilogy. Revenge of the Sith is certainly the stongest of the 2nd trilogy, but the first 2 were weak. Of course, I think that it's harder to do a decline & fall motiff than the rise and journey of the hero, hence, the second trilogy had more challenges. Plotting venality don't work quite as well for a medium that likes action. The stength of ESB also lies in its startling revelation of parternity & kinship and how it thinkens the stew. (Rose & I saw that Luke & Leia were siblings by the end of ESB after the Vadar paternity was established.)
For conistent strength of storyline and visuals, LOR takes the cake. Each one
is quite good & integral. The Matrix with its F/X and gnostic storyline is the most intriguing of the entries, although I thought the sequals got too bogged down.

17 July 2005

Sing Your Praise to the Lord

At church this evening, I was VERY excited to see that the vocalist that when I started going to St. Bonaventure's, used to always be at that mass. But for the past year, she had gone away to college and her return was SUPER! (She also happens to be the sister of a counselor I worked camp with last summer. Small world sometimes.) We have a woman that plays piano & sings wonderfully, who is a joy to listen to, but when she teams up with this college girl, they are transcendant. They build off each other, pushing each other to exciting heights. The joy they get from performing with each other is very special and easy to see. The difference that powerful, stimulating, energizing music can make in a mass celebration is incredible. These two women sing with unrestrained heart, at times getting to the point where they are so loud that it makes my eyes widen and I'm forced to smile. I think it's great. I think we get so used to the same monotone, level, methodical, even plodding things in our church, it is great to shake it up a bit and get outside of your comfort zone a little....keeps it stimulating, I guess.

Sidenote: Also at church this evening, I witnessed the pastoral associate being allowed to give the homily, and not just in the typical diocesan appeal, fundraiser-type speech. This was a real homily. And she did a decent job, but overdid it in the way that someone was wants to show how great they can be does it when they get one shot a year. But it was just something unique that I thought I'd share.

Looking up Mt. Randall Posted by Picasa

Looking back down Mt. Randall Posted by Picasa

dunes Posted by Picasa

Dara on the easy side of the dune. (this was only a medium size one.) Posted by Picasa

Steak on a stick and a bag of veggies. You can't really see it but I set up a couple logs to hold the veggies up so they weren't directly in the fire.  Posted by Picasa

50th Anniversary of Atomic Test

50 years since the first atomic test at the White Sands Missle Range in New Mexico. I thought the part about the radiation levels was interesting. I wonder where we get all that radiation exposure in our day-to-day life. I want to read that "109 East Palace" about the characters involved with Los Alamos. I've always been fascinated with J. Robert Oppenheimer.


Went to Warren Dunes State Park on Friday after work for our little camping weekend. This is the same State Park that we went to last fall and loved. So this time we hit the campsite around 7:30, set up our camp site, pitched our tent, got some fire wood and enjoyed some smores and turned in around 10. As the camping timetable dictates, we were roused at 7:00 the next morning by the symphony (or cacauphony) of bird calls, car doors and fellow campers. We took a bike ride to check out all the other camping areas and their inhabitants. Then we set out on a hike that turned out to be quite a workout. Two miles all in sand, all barefoot, A LOT of hills, and the trail kicks off with a tough ascent of Mt. Randall, a huge sand dune overlooking miles and miles of surronding land. By the time we'd completed it and got back to the campsite, we were sweaty and famished. And it was only 10:30. Regardless of that fact, we got a fire going and had lunch. We figured that when you are camping there aren't any clocks and you can eat when you are hungry, so we did. Cheese brats, hot dogs, potato salad. After that we packed our beach bag and grabbed our towels and left to spend the afternoon at the beach. It was great. Big towels, bright sun, a good book and the water was just cool enough to be refreshing when you got in. Since I had gone beyond my sun limit just a couple days earlier at the water park with my campers, I kept my shirt & cowboy hat on to shield as much of the UV as I could. We also took a mile or so trek to check out these "clay pits" that everyone was talking about. Sadly, they didn't live up to their hype, but it was an interesting hike anyways. Around 5 we got back to the camp and got the fire going and had some vegetables and steak shish-kabobs. Our grilling methods definitely improved as the weekend progressed. After dinner we entertained ourselves with magazines and card games, biked around a little and got out our gloves and played some catch. We kept the fire going and the just relaxed by it after dusk. This morning we pretty much just packed everything up and hit the road. It is so great that it is only an hour and a half from Chicago. And now that it is close to 100 degrees out, I'm happy to be on a sofa with the AC on and watching St. Elmo's Fire.

12 July 2005

Rock Star

Woo hoo!! What a great episode of INXS: Rock Star tonight. Marty Casey just blew the roof off. His cover of Franz Ferdinand's "Take Me Out" was nails and the crowds, his fellow competitors and the judges were all loving it. I also enjoyed Jordis. I don't enjoy J.D. or Wil or some of the girls.
Check out Marty's Rock Star blog here and get out there & vote (only for the next 5 hours). Tune in tomorrow night to see who gets the boot!


I saw the movie yesterday Beyond the Sea, fun really and Kevin Spacey is really good in it. I loved the music and am looking around for some of his CDs or the movie CD. He was a hunk all right. :) Put it on you list of movies from Net Flicks. Mom

11 July 2005


The Marquette community has spoken and they will be returning to the Golden Eagles moniker. Golden Eagles won over Hilltoppers 54%-46%. You can check out the athletics website here. Or you can go the the Shop and get some gear. I like the Adult replica shorts.

I found this article about the man everyone thought the mysterious 'piano man' was, coming forward to disprove stipulation. But I can't find anything since early June about this story. Any help?


I was so dirty and exhausted when I got home this afternoon that I went directly to the shower. It felt great to get washed up, slip into some clean fresh clothes, grab some leftovers from the open house yesterday and a tall glass of Countrytime lemonade and collapse on the sofa. Luckily my tv remote took me to E! True Hollywood Stories or whatever that show is called. I don't usually watch it, but I saw that it was just starting and it was about Oprah Winfrey. I enjoyed learning a bit about her. She came from a very poor family in Mississippi and went through some very rough times growing up, dealt with sexual abuse, had a wild phase, got pregnant very young (lost the baby), then sort of turned it all around and started working her way up. I also didn't know about this man that she's been with for like 15 years now, but they've never married. I've always liked her and respected her. She is queen here in Chicago, for sure. I decided two things after watching, 1- I need to watch "The Color Purple" and 2- I'd love to read her autobiography. (Mom, if she has one, I'm sure you've read it. Give me the inside scoop.)

09 July 2005

Our winning Egg Drop entry. Posted by Picasa

Egg Drop

We did a fun project with our camp kids on Thursday. I had done it in the past, but I think it was much more fun to see it as a facilitator. In the project, each team of kids gets the same list of materials, in our case a half of an egg carton, some thin rope, a big paper plate, a small paper plate, a yard of paper towels, a paper towel roll, some uncooked beans, 2 coffee cups and a dixie cup. They must construct a vessel to protect an uncooked egg from a drop. Our drop was front the elevated indoor track to the gym floor, probably about 25 feet. I was amazed by the clever ideas my group came up with. Any time I suggested a different idea, I was shot down. My contribution was in helping each kid get to voice their idea and I was very happy that our final version was a hybrid of several different kids' contributions. The incredible level of energy and excitement when it came time for the drop was hilarious. Kids were hopping around and dancing in circles because they were so eager for the impending trial. The double parachute idea (using the paper plate and the length of paper towels) my team went with worked wonderfully to slow the fall and our egg emerged from the packaging uncracked. Which is great because our product's motto (we had to market our product) was "Say No to Crack". I think I was as proud as my kids were elated that our team was the only one to enjoy a successful drop. It was a very fun morning.

Car trouble

Hearing your car engine's familiar starting sounds is such a given thing. I don't even think about it. I'm already thinking about putting it in drive before I turn the key. So when that time comes when you turn the key and you get an unexpected noise or worse, no noises, it is so startling and wierd. And that is what happened to me after work on Thursday. No rolling over, just a sad, weak click when I turned the key. The radio and the power windows still worked, though. Luckily, I know someone is this city and Dara was able to come over and give my car a jump. And my ears were put at ease when my engine emitted its signature starting monologue. So I was able to drive it home and now it sits dead outside on the street. My project for today is to figure out if it is just a dead battery or if a new alternator is needed. Either way, it shouldn't be too expensive of a fix. One good thing out of this, is that it has forced me to start riding my bike to work, which I've been saying I'd do for the past month. I'll let you know how my episode of 'Click and Clack' goes.

06 July 2005

The Singing Farmer

I was enjoying my Georage McGargill CD tonight on the way home and I love how it puts a smile on my face. 'Beautiful Land' is great, although it makes me think of how much better it was to when I heard it during 'Dear Iowa'. That play was incredible! I would give anything to have a good audio recording of it. I am also loving 'Why Not Iowa'. I never thought I'd hear Cedar Rapids rhymed with Mediapolis. It cracks me up. I'm going to have to get some more of his music from Luke. Thanks Mom, for the CD and for representing at the release party!


How would you figure this out. If you were pulling a load with my new neon pink rope, working load 50 pounds and doubled it , would you now be able to pull 100 pounds or just 50 pounds faster? Is there a formula for this or what?

05 July 2005

Pat Tillman

if you want to know more...
His bio http://www.pattillmanfoundation.net/pat/
articles on him http://www.pattillmanfoundation.net/news/053105.php
sports illustrated articles
Article 1
Article 2
Article 3

This is the one thing I saw on the 4th of July that made me pause for a moment and remember our veterans and those people who help make our country great, Pat Tillman in particular. He is one of a very few people in my generation that fills the title of American Hero. I have incredible respect & admiration for him.  Posted by Picasa

One of my campers decided I was cool enough to have her do my shoe laces like hers. Pretty nifty. I haven't had to untie them yet, though.  Posted by Picasa

The long weekend

Those 3 day weekends are so nice. That one little extra day makes such a huge difference. Not only do you get an extra 24 hours to do as you please, but then when you do have to go back to work, it's only a four day workweek! Can't beat it.
A very brief overview of what my weekend entailed; Friday night was babysitting. Saturday, some laundry, lunch at a Puerto Rican local restaurant (I had a steak sandwich that was served on fried plantains instead of bread. YUM), dinner at John's Pizzeria, a local pizza spot I'd been wanted to try and was very happy with, then saw 'War of the Worlds'. I enjoyed it and thought it was good, but would say it's not spectacular, maybe catch it at the dollar theater or rent it. Sunday, Indian food for lunch (only fair, the least enjoyable of the eateries I've tried up on Devon), went to the Frank Lloyd Wright Home & Studio. Walked around in the Oak Park neighborhood and looked at about a dozen FLW designed homes and the Unity Temple (which charges to view the interior! I refused to give them my $7) then took the tour of the home & studio. Such a cool place and such a genius! Our tour guide wasn't as good as the one when I went with Eron, but it was still fun, then Dara surprised me with reservations at a nice Italian restaurant, The Rosebud, downtown for 2 years of dating. She said I earned a nice dinner after putting up with two years of her. I agreed and eat my fill. We came home a watched some of the fireworks around the northside from the roof. Monday, we started off with a leisurely bike ride, then ate some of our huge selection of leftovers, watched the hot dog eating championships, then went down to the Taste of Chicago to listen to some music. It rained for 20 minutes or so when we got there so we hid under trees, then came out when it stopped and listened to two bands play, then it rained again, so we hid again. Then it stopped and we came out and listened to Moby play. It was a fun show, although he didn't play very long, then came home to watch more fireworks on the roof.
And now, back to work!


Well, I am having a good day so far, I went to Mass in Imogene and saw 3 pheasants on the way. Talked to some friends there then headed to my favorite store to shop, Orscheln's. Some women like Prada, Saks or such but give me the farm and home hardware store in Shenandoah. What a fun time I had there. When Eron and Kate, also known as omaha lawn and tree trimming service were here yesterday I realized I really needed some tools. I wanted a saw, rope, and a toolbox. I selected a great saw called the Sharptooth with a great openmouthed shark picture on the paper cover, I am saving the cover it is so awesome. Then I picked a red metal small toolbox that had my name written all over it. It is so cute. The rope, really cord, was really a fun aisle. I bought neon pink and lime green cord, working load 50 pounds. They also had brite yellow and blue which I think I will get the next trip so I can have all the colors. It even comes with a kite like winder to keep it on. 75 feet of it for $3.99-quite a buy. When I saw the brooms, and yes I did need one, I found a matching red metal(like the tool box, who do you know who has a toolbox that matches their broom?, I thought so , just me. ) broom that was wicked. Two color red and black Extra Wide angle broom. Now this was no ordinary broom, a metal handle that signaled serious sweeping and a 14 inch wide sweeping surface. I could sweep for hours. It is a Libman broom, don't know the name?, well they have been making brooms since 1896 the wrapper says so --that did it, the broom was mine. I told myself to get out of the store as my hands were full and soon my checkbook would not be. As I left though I saw their new flyer announcing "Fair Days", a great looking sale so I brought it home to study. Now if I could only use a "farm check"....

03 July 2005

New Boys Town president

And here is a new leader at Boys Town, he looks so young and fun, I saw an interview and he was kidding around and smiling. Kinda cute too!
For only the fourth time since its founding by famed Father Edward J. Flanagan in 1917, Girls and Boys Town inaugurated a new Executive Director today, Father Steven E. Boes.

The 46-year-old Catholic priest succeeds Father Val J. Peter, who retired as the director of the national nonprofit, nonsectarian child-care organization, which cares for 43,000 children from 19 sites in 15 states and the District of Columbia.

Boes assumed the post in a ceremony in which he was presented the Village of Boys Town flag, Father Flanagan’s Bible and a stone from Father Flanagan’s original home in Ballymoe, Ireland.

“In 1938, Father Flanagan set the goal of having a Girls and Boys Town in every state in the Union,” Father Boes said in his inaugural address. “We will continue to move forward until we make his dream a reality in all 50 states.” Boes added, “Our kids have a miracle locked up inside of them and our staff and programs make that miracle happen every day, whether it is in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago or San Antonio.”

Father Boes’ selection was part of a national search. Before taking the Girls and Boys Town post, Father Boes worked with Native American children at St. Augustine Indian Mission in Winnebago, Neb. In this position he learned to work with children of all faiths, especially Native American children and their unique culture and spirituality.

He is a native of Carroll, Iowa, and long-time resident of Elgin, Neb. A graduate of Pope John Central Catholic High School in Elgin, he holds a bachelor’s degree, summa cum laude, in sociology from St. John Vianney College Seminary, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minn.; master’s degrees in theology and divinity from the St. Paul Seminary College, University of St. Thomas; and a master’s in counseling from Creighton University in Omaha. Father Boes is the oldest of six children born to Eugene and Mary Jane (Nepple) Boes of Elgin.

Father Peter will become Executive Director Emeritus and remain as pastor of Dowd Catholic Chapel on the Girls and Boys Town campus.

Father Flanagan’s Girls and Boys Town is a national leader in the treatment and care of abused, abandoned and neglected children, providing them with a safe, caring, loving environment where they gain confidence to get better and learn skills to become productive citizens.

In 2004, a record number of children — 43,654 — received help, healing and hope from Girls and Boys Town’s direct care programs at 19 sites in 15 states and in the District of Columbia. More than 500,000 children and families were helped through the Girls and Boys Town National Hotline, and nearly 1 million more were served through outreach and professional training programs last year.

02 July 2005

New ND President

A new guy at the helm in South Bend. The past two presidents held their positions for 18 and 35 years. That's some pretty good job security. After looking at the gargantuan growth ND underwent in those years, it's also apparent that it come with some pretty big shoes. Here's to more years of ND excellence.

And he's off...

chasing #7. I hope very much that he gets it. Sounds like he started off the first day well. Check out the Tour's official site.


Ahh, the joys of camp. A younger camper, not in our section, threw up in the pool and also in the locker room (evidently didn't make it to the toilet). That was an hour or so before our section was supposed to swim. So the aquatic staff had to shock the pool (dump like a half gallon of concentrated chlorine in). We got all changed to swim and everything and one of the lifeguards said it was all clear. So everyone was standing around unsure about getting in, so I do a cannonball into the deep end and when I come up, the other lifeguard is like, "Jake, get out, it's not ready yet!" LOL. So, they are checking the chlorine level and it is way high still so we have to keep waiting. I guess the regular level is .1 and high-end of the safe zone is ~.3-.4 and our pool was at .5. So we waiting around for a half hour and after no change in the pool we gave up and we back in and showered and changed. Our kids were sad but understanding. And my skin is now red & peeling (just kidding)

Field Museum

Our field trip on Thursday took us to the Field Museum of Natural History. My group was six girls, aged nine to eleven. They didn't know what they were in for when they got hooked up with me in a museum. We were there from 10:00 am til 2:30 pm and only paused a half hour for lunch. My girls were troopers and we saw A LOT. I think they all saw a lot of things they enjoyed and probably a couple things they were bored with, but that is how comprimise works. Around 1:00, we came to the Pawnee Earth Home where you can go in and sit down on the bearskin covered cots and listen to a couple speakers talk about life as a Pawnee. My kids piled in and collapsed and listened attentively for a half hour. Their legs were worn out and ready for a break by then. My campers behaved very well and didn't complain too much and I was very proud of them, and I told them so. I love it when a kid is complaining about not wanting to be there or not wanting to see an exhibit and then they go in and end up loving it.
I've been to the Field Museum several times in the past couple years and I don't think I ever leave without seeing something I haven't seen before. We went to the Hall of Gems and the Hall of Jade which we new to me and also we went through the American Indians exhibit, which I don't remember seeing before. It was HUGE and pretty cool, and I don't even like American Indian history.
It was a good day.