Monday, October 31, 2005

Halloween and Weddings
Happy Halloween! It's a rainy night in Chicago. I decided to venture out to the Halsted Halloween Parade, which is super easy since it's like half a block away. I'm glad I brought my umbrella since it is wet and wild out there. I met up with Ting, Kevin, Jessica, and Dop to view the fruits of the very celebrated holiday in Boystown. The costumes were pretty great. A few that I spotted:
  • The Wheel from Wheel of Fortune
  • Very elaborate Willy Wonkas (two of them, one right after the other)
  • M&Ms
  • A sperm and an egg
  • A variety of dressed up dogs
I was excited to see what Kevin had done. He had helped assemble the costumes of Jessica and Dop as well and they were nothing less than awesome. Kevin was Powder (for those who remember the movie from the early 90s) and went as far to do a body shave for it, including his pate. Jessica was an amazing Veruca Salt and Dop as an Oompah Loompah was nothing less than inspired. I keep on telling Kevin that he should open a costume shop (do it, Kevin!). The parade didn't last an hour so I'm home ready to pound the books again, but there is much revelry going on a block away from me.

But, there's more to report on than Halloween. This past weekend in Bloomington for Steve and Kiley's wedding was lovely. They couldn't have asked for better weather for it (sunny and almost 70 on Saturday, the day of the wedding) either. While Bloomington struck me as a kind of strip-mally, they had their ceremony at a pretty little church outside in a place called Funks Grove. The church was complete with oil paintings of the dour Funks, it definitely added to the atmosphere.

Todd was in the wedding so I got to tag along on all of those things that are for the wedding party (rehearsal, rehearsal dinner, wedding pictures, etc) so I feel like I got the complete experience. The reception was the best part, though, since Kiley's drum teacher's wedding band played and live music is always the best. Todd even danced for a whole lot of it, which is close to a miracle. The highlight was when Kiley took over the drums in her wedding dress, Todd played bass, and Steve handled vocals and the guitar for a Superchunk song (I almost typed "Superchink" there, which would be an awesome blog name). I failed to take any pictures, but let me assure you that everyone look smart and dapper in their wedding gear.

Now it's time for the week to start. It's going to be a bear of a one: watch out. At least I had a good weekend, though.

Jessica as Veruca Salt. Posted by Picasa

Dop as the Oompah Loompah Posted by Picasa

He shaved his head...for his costume! That is what I call dedication. Posted by Picasa

Kevin as Powder.  Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

These busy middle weeks are killing me. It's non, non, non-stop. Today I was on campus from 8:30 to 8pm and doing stuff the entire time. Tomorrow I've got class all morning and then have to run to meet my supervisor in another part of Evanston to set off on three different home visits. I also need to haul along with me all of the junk necessary for the home visits. I foresee being very cranky come tomorrow evening. Relieved, but cranky.

This weekend should be fun since I'm heading to Bloomington (I think?) with Todd to go to Steve and Kiley's wedding. He's in the wedding party so we need to zoom out of Chicago as soon as we can on Friday to get there in time for fittings and rehearsal dinners and all of that good stuff. Next week is going to be another doozy (another day of two tests on one day, one being neuro--what the eff is up with that?). Gaaaaahhhhhh.

But the big news in Chicago is that the White Sox won! I can't even imagine what it's like in the Southside right now, but I can hear lots of honking and firecrackers and general festivity-making outside in the neighborhood here.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

It's going to be a weird day

One Red Eye from newspaper dude: free

Cost of one standard el ride into Evanston: $1.75

Discovering that your professor is sitting in the train seat in front of you when you're blabbing about his class with some people from your program: priceless.

(Note: I did a quick rewind when we realized it was him and I think, amazingly, everything that I said was good. Still, though, it left me shaken, not stirred.)

Monday, October 24, 2005

So the quarter has reached the point when the days are passing with a quickness. It's hard to believe that it's already late October. Halloween time and all. This time last year was so vivid to me still that it's hard to believe that a year has passed since then.

Anyway, this past weekend was nice and relaxed. On Friday night we went to Bolingbrook to get together with Jackie and Rob for an early Halloween get together at a bar by where they all used to live. Let me just say this: Jackie and Rob's costumes were A-1. They had on those costumes that you see people in and say to yourself "daaamnn, I can't believe that they made that!" Jackie was Smurfette and Rob was a monkey complete with red bow tie and big floppy Dumbo ears. Jackie and her mom *made* both of them. My costume? Recycled from last year: Identity crisis. I even wore the same clothes, that's how poor of a dresser-upper I am. The name tags that I purchased where wanting, though, so my costume lasted for about negative three seconds before I scrapped the whole concept. It was beyond poor. Todd also recycled from last year, wearing a Babe the Pig costume for a 2-4 year old, but he proudly wore his costume the entire night. Picture that if you can.

Anyway, Saturday night was filled more music when we went to see Holy Roman Empire play at the Metro for an early show and then off to the Empty Bottle to go see Mile Marker play (I always want to call them Maker's Mark for some reason).

Now I'm preparing for the week ahead by watching "Making the Band 27" on Mtv. As you do.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Hooray for that! I got through the week. I've got a measly lab and core meeting left, but that's it until freedom.

So last night we met up with Jackie and Rob, Todd's old roommates, who are in town visiting after moving to Colorado. It was excellent to see them, as always. Our original plan was to go to Schuba's for dinner and then go to the American Analog Set show there. That was not to be, though, since the show sold out beforehand (drats). Instead we went to Las Mananitas in my neighborhood, home of my favorite margaritas on the planet. Hands down favorite, people. Todd, Jackie, and I split a pitcher, which was just what the end to a busy week called for. Afterward we moved west and had a cheap PBR at the Green Eye lounge. I like that place, even moreso after once talking to the bartender and discovering that he had gone to William and Mary (even living in Monroe Hall).

Speaking of William and Mary, it's Homecoming there this weekend. In lieu of going to Williamsburg for the festivities, Dave has organized a pretty amazing itinerary of Homecoming activities in Chicago for the William and Mary contingent here. It's like a two day thing. I hope to attend at least one of the events, and will try to report back with photos.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

It's downhill from here
The difficult part of my week is over, hurrah! Double hurrah, in fact! I have an easy end of week and weekend and then next week will be hopping again with client stuff, but that's like a good five days away. Practically eternity, according to me.

So, two exams on Tuesday. They were all right and I'm happy to report that I won't have to be retaking the neuro exam. I was pretty bone tired after them, and then after a short break, headed into a client session with my five year old. She was off the wall that day. I seriously spent about 40% of the session coaxing her out from under the table (which led my supervisor to suggest that we take all of the furniture out of the room next time...all of it, including the little kid table and chairs). At one point she broke out of the room and my supervisor and I had to sprint down the hall to head her off. Needless to say, we didn't get a whole lot accomplished. I didn't feel disheartened by the whole deal, since that comes with the territory with some of the clients and my supervisor gave me big kudos for keeping my cool. What *was* funny is that this was my first session being observed by a whole gaggle of people for one of their classes. They found me afterward and were google eyed and slack jawed after such a hilariously bad session.

After that session, though, I was *exhausted*. I had to run to a meeting, but as I was gathering my stuff, my legs were shaking from fatigue. I'd always just assumed that I would definitely want to work with kids in the future, but now I'm considering more options now. I love kids, and they crack me up, but my adult client is so much fun and so motivated that it's really refreshing. It's less about keeping her engaged than about getting our stuff done. I have made peace with the concept that sometimes kids just won't work. You give your all to get them to work with you and you keep on trying till something sticks, but kids are stubborn creatures.

I also got assigned TWO assistants this quarter. I'm a lead clinician, y'all. Watch out, I'm drunk with power.

Monday, October 17, 2005

What's getting me through the week
Are the Season 2 dvds of "Arrested Development." They slay me.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Yes, I should be studying...
But, there's an excellent article in Slate about the greatness of Noah Baumbach's early movies. "Kicking and Screaming" is still one of my favorite movies ever (and only on VHS!).
Day of Firsts
Yesterday was a day of firsts for me.
1. I sat down and completed two reports back to back without complaint. EVEN THOUGH it took me about three times as long since very long, detailed transcription of speech samples were involved. I was rather impressed with myself, thank you very much. It's actually very good for me to have those out of the way so I can get down to business with these two exams on Tuesday. YAY!

2. Todd and I walked over to Irazu for lunch. It's this little Costa Rican place close to where Todd lives on Milwaukee and we always pass it on our way to the heart o' Wicker Park and Bucktown. It is small and unassuming but there are always people milling around so it was time to give it a try. Yum. I had the vegetarian burrito with sauteed mushrooms and it was to die for. Todd had a sandwich which involved breaded steak on french bread (needless to say he napped promptly afterward). Todd felt guilted into buying me lunch because apparently yesterday was Sweetest Day. We had passed some local flower shops in his neighborhood that were busting a gut to put out flower displays and make more sells. Reading Hallmark's press release (!) about it, apparently it started as a day celebrated in the Great Lakes region and it now spreading throughout the country.

So, actually, I guess that should be number 3 of new things experienced...

3. Sweetest Day.

4. For dinner, Todd's friend Kip was in town so we went to dinner at this new BBQ place that opened on Western called Honey 1. It's no frills but pleasant. You go walk through the door, go up to the window and make your order and then sit down at one of the no frills tables in the flourescent lighting to wait for your food. A sweet kid who works there brings it out to you. Todd and I shared a full slab of ribs. I thought that they were pretty awesome: succulent and the meat fell off the bone, but then again I'm not too picky when it comes to my bbq. Kip ordered this x-large serving of the rib tips combo which involved a serious mountain of rib tips and cut up hot links. I wished that I had my camera so I could take a picture of the enormity of it all.

5. After dinner we went to Roscoe Village to watch the White Sox win against the Angels. I'm adding this as five since I don't think I've ever gone to watch a sports event at a bar before. Seriously. I wasn't crazy into it, but I was mildly interested and working hard not to look completely disinterested. I think that I was successful.

6. Finally, I went to Exit for the first time. It's this cavernous punk/rock dance club on North Avenue. Todd took us there so Kip could experience the sights, but when we went it was at about 10:30 before the crowds descended. So there were few people bellied up the bar under the huge wrought iron chandeliers festooned with bras and there was nary a soul dancing in the caged floor upstairs. My favorite were the enormo metal cut outs of skulls hung up by the ceiling. One had an axe sunk into the front of him and one was keeling over from the bottle of poison positioned beside him.

And that ended my day of excitement. We came back and turned on "Black Samurai
" which was awesome but I couldn't stay awake for the end of it. Too much excitement in one day for me!

Thursday, October 13, 2005

I'm still here
I know that all has been silent from the blog, but it's hit that time of the quarter when things get really heated up. I've reached the point where I'm familiar enough with the ebb and flow (and flow, flow, flow) of the work and the tests that I'm kind of bemused by it. It's like impossible for one to NOT have two mid-terms on one day even though there are like two cycles of mid-terms per quarter. I've only had one quarter when that hasn't happened and that was summer quarter when there *were* no midterms. I'm not all stressed out, but I'm just resigned that life is going to be a little sucky for the next few days. See, on top of the two midterms on Tuesday (one being neuro--gah!), I have mid-quarter reports due and news of a brand new client starting next week.

So that's been my life this week and will likely be my life for the next week or so.

Don't be too jealous.

Monday, October 10, 2005

It was a gaw-geous Sunday Posted by Picasa

Sunday at the lakeshore Posted by Picasa

Ting, Suz, Todd and Brad at the bean, directly after that proposal. Posted by Picasa

A view from the Bean at Millenium Park. You might be able to see the dude proposing to his girlfriend that is the middle right blob there. He was dropping to his knee just as I was clicking this picture. Posted by Picasa

Saturday lunch! Posted by Picasa
Catching Up
I've spent this entire day knee deep in laundry and books. Again, it's pretty ideal to have Mondays off since I have the entire day to prepare for the week ahead since I didn't really have time this past weekend. It does turn into the day to pay the piper, though.

But, what an awesome weekend. Suzi and Tom were in town and made for the easiest kind of guests in that they were amenable to anything and everything. Suzi, Tom, Brad, Ting, Todd, and some of Tom's friends and I (in varying combinations of all) set out on Chicago intent on eating at all of the best and yummiest restaurants. Mission accomplished. Friday night, Suzi and Tom arrived and we all met up at Giordano's so they could try some of Chicago's deep dish pizza. Done and done. After having a drink at the Duke of Perth (which has awesome customer service; the hostess rushed to get chairs for seven for the one four-top left in the cozy little place), Todd and I split off after a drink to go to Dave Barak's house re-heating party to catch up with the William and Mary contigent.

Saturday, after lunching at Hot Doug's (because what is a visit to Chicago now without a visit to that place?) we went downtown to go on a walking tour with the Chicago Architectural Foundation. It focused on pre-WW buildings, and what I learned was about how to identify an Art Deco building and also that the Marquette Building downtown has the most amazing mosiac I've ever seen before in its lobby. It was a good way to spend an afternoon, despite the cool grey weather. After that we caught the red line to Chinatown where Ting and Brad took us to a Sichuanese restuarant that they like there called Lao Sze Chuan. It was *amazing* real Sichuanese food with lots of spice and Ting and Brad did a perfect job of ordering a variety for a table of 8. I wish I knew about this place beforehand, but what a discovery. Apparently, they're going to be featured on the Chicago show "Check Please" in November. Rightly so.

After that, Todd and I parted way with the troops and went to Subterranean to see his roommate/bandmate, Rich play in Bear Claw for a Katrina fundraiser. We stayed for three bands, and it was a good time. I was especially impressed by the variety of music represented.

Sunday we brunched at Ann Sather, and then walked along the lake to North Avenue Beach and back. Luckily, the weather was finally sunny and clear so Suzi and Tom weren't only exposed to overcast Chicago weather. Their Chicago trip ended with a bang when we stopped by Cupcakes a new little gourmet cupcake bakery on Briar, a couple of blocks from me. Oh lord. The cupcakes are pricey at $3 each, but they're a sight to behold. Perfect little confections in flavors like chocolate raspberry and orange cream.

After bidding Suzi and Tom farewell and doing some reading, I joined Todd and Rich on a grocery shopping extravaganza. We stopped at Aldi where the produce prices again blew me away. I got a cucumber for 10 cents! At the Jewel by me they're $1 each. I love Aldi. Even though I totally dropped one of Rich's apple juice bottles there while trying to help load it and it cracked open and made a total mess.

And now today is laundry, neuro homework, lesson planning, fluency homework, etc. This particular neuro homework is a doozy so I'm taking a break from it before diving back in tonight. I think it's time for a salad, though. I'll use some of that cheap Aldi produce.

Friday, October 07, 2005

The Onion gives a nod to the plight of the frat boys of William and Mary
Although, sadly, I believe that Sigma Nu exists is no more there (am I right?)

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

It has begun
So my clients start this week. I've already had my clinic ones (one little one and one adult). I like them both, but I especially love my adult who's young and fun and motivated, so despite the fact that I get home at 9pm on Wednesdays because of the session, it's worth it. Tomorrow I follow along with a supervisor to do Early Intervention home visits about which I'm pretty excited.
This is all great, and makes for an ever greater schedule since my week is loaded up on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursdays with an easy Friday and NO Monday. Yes, folks, that was NO Monday.

However, it makes for a tired Kristin mid-week. It's all right, though, since I don't really mind that much because...NO Mondays!

Maybe I'm jinxing myself, but this might be my favorite quarter yet.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Oh man, today makes for the most exciting day that I will have all quarter, if not all year. See, Laura and I had to bail out of our screening in the Southside that we were originally scheduled to attend this morning because traffic was so horrendous, and we would have gotten there with an hour left to the screening. So instead we spent the morning hanging out in my apartment, studying and listening to music. I was glad that Laura was there since I actually did work rather than watching quality daytime tv.

(This wasn't what made this the most exciting day of the quarter, btw. )

What made it the most exciting day ever was that we decided to go to get lunch from Hot Doug's to take back to Evanston with us when we ran into a crew from the Food Network! It's for a show called "Eat This" about food trends in different cities, so one of the places that they were visiting in Chicago was Hot Doug's (rightly so, mind you). Laura and I ordered our stuff and watched the camera guys with curiosity when one of the production guys approached us asking us if we would be interested in being interviewed. Mmmm....yeeeessss!

So basically they filmed the host, Dave Lieberman, coming by our table with a tray of Hot Doug's gourmet hot dogs, introducing himself and sitting down. Then we all tasted all of the hot dogs and agreed on which one was the best (the winner was the alligator with blue cheese crumbles on top). The other kinds we tried were chorizo (good, kinda winey); venison with figs (dry, not my favorite); and some kind of french sausage that I couldn't pronounce but that was spicy and juicy.

Apparently this was their second city filmed, their first was New York. The show premieres on November 21st, so set your DVRs now.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Welp, it's official
Now, I am definitely old and boring. I had held onto the idea that I could vaguely rock it when necessary, but let's be honest here: b-o-r-i-n-g.

See, tonight offered the possibilities for lots of rocking. It was Kiley's bachelorette party, which was a very nice party just because there were no plastic penises (penii?) involved. It started at dinner at Pizano's, an Italian place nearby; continued onto a Baby Wants Candy show at I.O. (formerly Improv Olympic, and now only I.O. apparently because of copyright reasons); and then the plan was for the crew to crawl down the Clark Street bars with the intent to get Kiley sufficiently tipsy.

I lasted till 10. Granted, it was after the I.O. show, and dinner started at 5pm, so it had been five hours already, but still. AND, it wasn't that I left them to join some school friends downtown to celebrate someone's birthday which was also an option.

No, I left to go home and crack the books. It occurred to me throughout the night that I had quite a growing list of stuff that I wanted to get accomplished this weekend, and the thought of leaving it all to one day was torturous. So, yes, I came home and read tonight, brainstormed on some homework due this week, and contemplated the rest of my list of things to do. And now I may read a little more, but then I am definitely going to sleep because goddammit it's 12:33 in the morning and even though I woke up this morning (?) at 11, I could use a little shut eye.

Old. Boring. And Proud.
Foiling all stalking
Noted for those who use Friendster. I do when I'm bored and nosey, but apparently there's a wrench thrown in the works. They've added a feature, as of yesterday I believe, that allows you to look at who's looked at your profile (I found this in Gawker, scroll down to 9/30). With no warning they did this. That's Bull, dude. Luckily I don't think that I poked around yesterday...I don't think.