Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Our NY adventure!

Last weekend, Keith and I made a trip up to Rochester, NY to celebrate my grandfather's 80th birthday! His children (my mom and her siblings) planned a surprise party at one of his favorite restaurants and we were all excited to celebrate the life of a wonderful man. It was great to see a lot of extended family members that we don't get to see that often, although it was a whirlwind weekend that went by way too fast!

Keith and I had decided awhile ago that we were going to fly up to Rochester since we both had to work on Friday and needed to back to work on Monday. Keith actually had a conference he was presenting at in Williamsburg on Friday so that added to the mix.

All was going well when we boarded our flight in Richmond at 7:30pm headed to NYC's Laguardia airport. Like all flights, we pulled away from the gate, taxied to the runway and stopped....assuming that we were "next in line" to depart. Unfortunately, when the pilot came on the overhead speaker, instead of hearing the usual "Ladies & Gentlemen, we have been approved for departure....blah, blah, blah", we heard "Ladies & Gentlemen, unfortunately there has been a stoppage of inbound flights into Laguardia due to flight traffic. We are being told that the stoppage will be lifted at 8:30pm, so we have to sit here (on the tarmac) for the next 45 minutes. I am sorry for the delay and will now turn off the fasten seat belt sign for your comfort". GREAT!! Just what we wanted to do...sit on a plane on the runway for 45 minutes!! It was a good thing I bought a magazine in the airport before we got on the plane (since I had left my book at home by accident!).

After sitting on the runway for almost an hour, we finally took off around 8:45pm. We knew almost certainly that we were not going to make our connection out of Laguardia into Rochester which was leaving at 9:45pm. I was still trying to hold out hope that the plane would wait for us or that there would be another flight leaving later that we could get on, but I was not feeling very confident.

As I suspected, when we arrived in Laguardia, the plane headed to Rochester had already left and there were no other options for us that night. We stood in line at the "Special Services" counter and waited to be told what our options were for a flight out in the morning. A man in front of us, who was not very happy, was talking on the phone to someone saying that the earliest flight out wouldn't get him in to Rochester until Saturday afternoon! I was a little scared to see what the agent was going to tell us. The birthday party started at 11:30am so we needed to get there as soon as we could!

Thankfully, we were told that we could take a flight out at 6am that would allow us to arrive in Rochester at 9:30am. The agent booked the flight for us and our next question was, "Do we get a voucher for a free hotel room?" The answer was no. She said that they do not normally issue vouchers for air traffic or weather issues, only if there is a mechanical issue with a plane. She said we could try to speak to her supervisor (who was at the end of the counter) but that she didn't think she would be able to do anything for us. I was willing to just walk away, but Keith (being the resourceful person that he is) said that we should try to talk to the supervisor. He said that the worst that she could say was no, but there was no harm in asking. Smart man!!

I am not sure what we did or what we said, but about 20 minutes later, we were walking away from the Special Services counter with a voucher for a free hotel room. There were five or six other people who were in the same predicament as we were and they only got a $25 credit towards a hotel room. I told Keith that I think it was the fact that we were very nice to the agent....trying to be understanding and not angry, like some of the other people were. Anyways, whatever we did or didn't do, we saved ourselves about $200 in hotel room charges! And, we left the airport not completely hating USAirways!

By the time we waited for the shuttle and actually got to the hotel (which, thankfully, was only about 5 minutes from the airport), it was almost 11:00pm. When the desk clerk asked if we needed a wake up call, we reluctantly said "3:30am please" (we had to be back to the airport by 5am to catch the 6am flight out). Needless to say, we only got about 3 1/2 hours of sleep that night!

Thankfully our flights from Laguardia to Philly and from Philly to Rochester on Saturday morning were uneventful. We arrived on time in Rochester and were able to spend some quality time (although short!) with my extended family!

We turned around and flew back to Richmond on Sunday afternoon - with no glitches, thank goodness. It was definitely a long trip, but worth it to celebrate Papa's birthday and see so many wonderful relatives!!

Monday, October 20, 2008

A Night at Scott Stadium

Barb and me on the field after the awesome win Saturday night!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Home Alone

This is the second weekend in a row that I have been home alone. Last weekend, Keith made a trip to PA to visit with his family and attend activites associated with Fort Ligonier Days, which is a festival in a town near where he grew up. I couldn't go because I had to work.

This time he left on Thursday to head north to Pittsburgh to meet up with a friend, and then they drove to Cincinnati on Friday. He was attending the LITA Forum in Cincy until today. He also had the opportunity to visit with his mom tonight - on his way back through Pittsburgh - and will return home tomorrow. Yippee!
Even though I have missed having Keith here, I did some pretty cool things this weekend while he was gone:

On Thursday & Friday nights, I went to Katie & Shaun's house and got to hang out with them and Pierce. On Thursday night, I babysat Pierce and on Friday, all three of us hung out. Katie was awesome and cooked for me both nights and I had a blast. Pierce is growing up so fast and I just love spending time with him. His words have gotten a lot clearer and he is so expressive when he tells stories. He had us laughing hysterically at the dinner table on Friday night.

On Saturday morning, I met Katie, Shaun & Pierce at Carter Mountain Orchard. I was only able to stay for about an hour, because I had to go to work, but in that short time we took a hayride, walked through the pumpkins (which Pierce just loved!), and had hot apple cider. After I left, they stayed and picked their own apples (14 lbs of them so I hear). It was really fun and the views from the top of the mountain were beautiful. Unfortunately, I didn't take any pictures, but Shaun took a good one of Pierce and me:

Katie posted some others on her blog. You can see them HERE.

Saturday afternoon/evening was spent hosting football recruits and their families before the game. Then, cheering the Cavaliers on as they defeated the UNC Tar Heels in OT! Honestly, it was not a very exciting game for us until the last 2 minutes, when we drove down the field to score a TD to tie the game. Then, in OT, our defense held UNC to a field goal and we were able to score a TD to win the game! The best part was that I was standing on the field behind the endzone for the last 2 minutes and the overtime. I had a birds eye view of the winning TD! It was awesome!!

After the game, I went out to dinner with a good friend and then spent the night at her house. We stayed up late talking and had a great time catching up.

This morning, after breakfast at her house, we went to Starbucks to get coffee and chat a bit more. Then, we went for a walk on the Saunders-Monticello Trail. It is a total of four miles and it was more walking than I had done in a long time. But it felt really good to get some exercise and it didn't even seem that far since we were talking the entire time! And, the leaves were so beautiful. I love this time of the year and it was great to be outside on a beautiful sunny Fall day.

After we finished our walk, I returned home. My afternoon & evening activities included watching football (Go Bills!! 5-1!), doing laundry, cleaning (just a little!), and making homemade chicken noodle soup. It has been a pretty relaxing day and I am glad that it is the last night that I have to spend alone.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Pregnancy & Infant Loss Remembrance Day

Today is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Remembrance Day. It is a day that we can all remember those babies that we have lost through miscarriage or infants who died soon after birth. It is a day that way too many people are a part of. It is unbelievable the number of people who I know that have lost a baby. Miscarriage is a sad & frustrating situation and I know, from personal experience, that you never forget that "little one" that you didn't get to meet.

For all of those women (and men) who have experienced the loss of a baby and are still trying, I pray that you will continue to believe in the possibility of someday being a parent. I also praise God for the people that I know who have had successful pregnancies and beautiful children after experiencing the heartache of miscarriage or the loss of an infant.

Remember, God knows what is best and we all need to remember that everything happens in His time and His way. Don't ever stop believing!!

For more information on this Day of Remembrance, click HERE.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Keith's surprise birthday dinner

Last Saturday night, a bunch of our friends and family got together to celebrate Keith's 40th birthday. It was a surprise dinner party that I had been planning for some time.

I wanted to do something special for his birthday this year since he turned the Big 4-0! We had talked back in the summer about what to do - have a party, go somewhere fun, or do whatever Keith wanted to do. Unfortunately, since I work in a football office, everything in the Fall revolves around football season. And the Cavaliers had a full home football schedule in October (home every Saturday except the last one). Since I have to work home football games, it seemed too complicated to try to plan a party or go away for the weekend. So....Keith thought that we weren't really doing anything fun for his big day (other than going to my parents house on Sunday and my mom making him the dinner of his choice!).

I decided about a month ago that I wanted to plan a surprise dinner party and invite a bunch of people from Keith's life, past and present. I decided to have it at Capital Alehouse in Richmond because that is one of his favorite restaurants, and I knew that they had a big back room that could fit a large dinner party.

I would say that it was a huge success! We had about 20 of Keith's friends (and my sister, brother-in-law, and niece also) to help celebrate his big milestone! He was super surprised when he walked in and saw all of the people who were there in his honor. I personally think he was a bit overwhelmed by the different groups that were represented (friends from his old job at Virginia Union University, friends from his old job at University of Richmond, and some friends from his current job at UVA).

I hope everyone in attendance had a great time because I know that Keith and I did. We had a wonderful dinner and topped it off with a cake (in the shape of a book) from Keith's favorite Richmond baker, Cakes by Graham. (I was highly disappointed to see that they spelled Keith's name wrong on the cake, as you can see in the picture below. But the cake did taste good and it looked cute too.)

Thank you to everyone who came to the party. Also, a big thank you to my sister, Karen and my parents, who helped get the cake from the bakery to the restaurant. Also, Karen took many of the photos that night so that was a huge help.

Me and Keith at dinner
Part of the dinner party group
The gang
"The Life and Times of Keith (aka Kieth) Weimer" cake
Lighting the candles - they were having trouble keeping them litSinging "Happy Birthday"
Blow out the candles
The Boys - Will, Keith, Chris (and Owen) - great friends!!
Some of the guests gathered for a picture

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Happy Birthday to my hubby

Today is Keith's 40th birthday. We are spending the day in Richmond with my family and my mom is making her famous spaghetti sauce in honor of Keith's birthday (this was his request).

Last night, I pulled off a surprise birthday dinner for Keith. I was super excited about it and it ended up being a really fun time. Keith and I both got to see a lot of old friends that we hadn't seen in awhile.

My sister Karen was the photographer for the event last night so I will post pictures as soon as I get them from her.

Happy Birthday baby! I am so blessed to have you in my life and I can't wait to celebrate many, many more birthdays with you!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Where have I been?

I have been out of the blogging world for quite awhile now. The main reason is that I have been so busy. It seems like I have not really had a spare moment in a long time. I have been either traveling, working, or hanging out with friends and family. There have been a lot of things going on in my life, but I have been either too busy or just too tired to actually sit down and post about all of them. It amazes me when I read blogs belonging to women with jobs, husbands, houses, and kids. Where do they find the time to do all of the daily necessities of life and still blog??!!

Here is a run-down of what has been going on and where I have been in the past few weeks:

Tuesday, Sept. 16th
~It was a sad day. We got word that my grandfather passed away. His funeral was going to be in Binghamton, NY on Monday, Sept. 22nd. (See my sister Karen's post HERE for a wonderful tribute to our Papa).

Saturday, Sept. 20th
~Keith and I left bour house at 8am, picked up my sister Katie, and headed to Richmond.
~Left my parents' house in Richmond around 10am. In my mom's minivan: Keith, me, Katie, Karen, Sierra, Mom, and Mike.
~Arrived in Binghamton, NY around 5pm.

Sunday, Sept. 21st
~Calling hours for my grandpa were 2pm-5pm.
~We saw a lot of family that we hadn't seen in a long time or that Keith had never met. It was good to see people, but sad for my grandma, my dad and his siblings.

Monday, Sept. 22nd
~ We were up early. Had to check out of the hotel and get breakfast before the family prayer time at 8:30am, funeral at 9:30am.
~ I did a reading at the funeral mass at the request of my grandmother. I was nervous, but got through it OK.
~There was a luncheon after the funeral and then we got back in the car to head home around 2:30pm.
~We drove back to Richmond - with many stops - arrived around 10pm.
~Drove from Richmond to C'ville. Dropped Katie off at her house. Arrived home around 11:30pm. Long day!!

Tuesday, Sept. 23rd
~Went out to dinner with folks from work. Quadruple date night (four couples) at the Melting Pot. Very good food and conversation, but we didn't get home until 11pm!

Wednesday, Sept. 24th
~Did Laundry!
~Packed for the wedding weekend! Bridesmaid dress...check! Rehearsal dinner outfit....check! 10 pairs of shoes (no joke)...check! I couldn't decide which ones I wanted to wear!!

Thursday, Sept. 25th
~After work, we had to go to the mall to find Keith something to wear. He realized on Wednesday night (yes, one day before we were leaving!!), that he didn't have anything to wear to the wedding. Luckily, we found a suit that was nice with pants that didn't need to be hemmed.
~Drove to Blacksburg - in the pouring rain!! Arrived at the hotel around 9pm.
~Hung out and had drinks in the hotel lounge with extended family. In bed around midnight.

Friday, Sept. 26th
~Bridesmaid stuff starting at 9am: Starbucks breakfast, nail salon pampering, and a luncheon. Fun times!! Here are pictures from the nail salon:

The bride, the maid of honor and her mom getting pedicures
Three lovely bridesmaids getting pedicures

~Back to the hotel for some rest. I had planned to take a nap, but didn't get to sleep at all - I was too busy catching up on emails & blogs and talking to my husband. Also, got to spend some quality time with Pierce. He is so darn cute!!
~Rehearsal at 5:30pm. Dinner afterwards. Party after that. We got to see a lot of family and friends who had come from out of town.
~In bed around midnight.

Saturday, Sept. 27th
~Mike & Blakely's wedding day!! :-)
~Went to the hair salon at 10am (with a stop at Starbuck s on the way). Here are some pics:The lovely bride with her hair done
Karen and meBlakely getting her make-up doneSisters with our hair done (albeit without make-up and looking a little tired!)

~Went to Blakely's parents' house after the hair salon to have lunch and get dressed for the wedding.
~In the limo at 2:30pm. Went to the VT Alumni Center for pictures. Then, on to the church.
~It was a beautiful wedding ceremony!! We are so excited to have Blakely "officially" join our family.
~The reception followed with exceptional food and lots of dancing. A great time was had by all!
~At 11pm, after Mike & Blakely exited the reception, a bunch of us went out to the parking lot to decorate their car. It looked awesome!!!

Here are some pictures from the day:

Blakely with her three of her best friends - these girls were a hoot!
"Sisters" - right before walking down the aisleMike watching his bride walk down the aisle

The whole gang
Pierce and me at the receptionMe and my hubbyMike's car....
"Just Married"

Sunday, Sept. 28th
~Blakely's parents hosted a brunch at their house. It was a great way to spend more time with the happy couple and with family that had traveled from out of town.
~The "Stank family men" smoked cigars in memory of Papa:

~Keith and I left Blacksburg around 3pm. Stopped in Waynesboro to meet up with some friends for dinner (they were here visiting from their home in Toronto).
~Arrived home around 9pm. Unpacked and went to bed!

So, as you can see, we have been just a little bit busy the past few weeks! Unfortunately, October is just as busy! We have a lot going on this month and I will try to blog periodically so that my next post is not super long like this one!!