Musings of a Museum Fanatic: September 2013


The Things People say on Facebook oh my!

Today has been one of those days where I'm thinking of something for work, a blog post idea or something I need to add to my to do list and poof it's gone. I can't get the thoughts back! My brain is just not ready for the week.

Its seems lately that my friends on Facebook are saying the most interesting things!  Not necessarily smack your head I can't believe you said that type things but they still make you stop and go wait what? : )

"How does one clean two large elephants?? With a vacuum and feather duster of course!" 

"Someone help me practice flirting STAT! I used to be so clever and witty. im afraid all of my banter now involves duck dynasty quotes and "im so old" jokes. eek"

"Government shutdown tomorrow! There are no rules! I can do whatever I want! I'm eating breakfast for dinner then going streaking!"

"No I don’t apologize for taking back the life that I deserve."
**This one is from one of my favorites from the last time : )  You don't deserve crap ... talk to me after you've been working your ass for five years for barely any money!

Overall my Facebook peeps were pretty amusing this week!


Being all productive and whatnot!!

First off go enter the giveaway I'm hosting (if you haven't done so already)!!

Stephanie is pushing up our monthly link up a day so let's catch up and see how everyone is doing on their goals!  I actually feel pretty good about how I did this month.  Honestly I didn't end up doing all that great on the five goals I set out for myself last month but I did get some other items checked off.  The one item off the list I did accomplish was putting in an extra loan payment woo!  I think I was actually able to pay it towards the one with the highest interest too.  

While I can't ever seem to made a to do list and stick to it I did get some other 101 list items in the works and accomplished!  My good friend Jackie and I ended up making homemade pasta last weekend.  Let me tell you it turned out awesome.  We are still super impressed with ourselves, especially since we left out an ingredient!  Keep an eye out for that recipe coming up soon : ) I actually double dipped with that one ... homemade pasta and a recipe from one of my 70 odd cookbooks.  Kevin and I are burning through that 101 task as well.  The Pampered Chef spiral cookbooks make it really easy to choose a recipe from each and leave the book open until we've cooked it.  Working from my other ones might be a little more difficult plus I've already packed up a bunch of them so I need to exchange some out.

Checking out my list again I seem to be lacking in the Bettering Myself and Husband categories.  I think those are going to be my top priorities the next month for sure.

1.  Check out classes at the library, find one I'm interested in and put it on the calendar
2.  Figure out which three classic movies I want to see ... suggestions welcome!
3.  Looking into the pricing of the dance place five minutes from our house.
4.  Attempt to figure out an all day movie or video game day with Kevin and prepare for it (pick out the movies/games, food, etc.)
5.  Finish up the birthday/anniversary calendar.

How are you doing on your goals the past month?


One Year Blogiversary! {Giveaway!}

I know I'm a few days late but I finally got myself together and pulled together an amazing group of ladies for a fabulous giveaway. I can't believe that it's been a year now since I started really blogging on a regular basis. Things have changed a TON this past year. Seriously this time last year I had no clue that I would be in a full time job, doing so much with the blog and Gamma Phi and so many other things or that Kevin wouldn't be with Stache full time or we would go through another crazy him with then without and then with a job spell again. Crazy and stressful but pretty good year : )

In case you were wondering here is my first post. Supposedly I guest posted on Stephanie's blog as well that week ... although I can't seem to find it to link to you.  Someone went a little ocd cleaning crazy on her blog *gives the side eye to Stephanie*
Looking back at some of my earlier posts and what I was like last year it's crazy how much the blog has helped me to grow as myself too.  Especially when I started the 101 list (update to come this weekend!).  Accomplishing goals that one has wanted to do for so long is such an awesome and almost freeing feeling.  I can do it *Bender at the end of The Breakfast Club fist pump*!  Not just because of the list but the blog in general I feel that I've grown even more ... maybe not even grown but gotten out of my rut and started moving again.
Now to just keep moving ... or swimming which ever you prefer.  Now the fun part!  I was able to get a group of fabulous ladies together to celebrate my blogiversary and giveaway some killer prizes.  Some of them I've known for a while, I've hung out on their blog, they're hanging out on mine, newish friends and very new friends! Be sure to not just click follow but head on over to their blogs and check things out.  You won't be disappointed!


Chicago Chocolate Tours

One of the many fun and exciting things that happened this past weekend was that Bethany and myself finally went on the Chicago Chocolate Tour that we purchased through I think Living Social!  We only bought them way back in May.  It started out being the two of us but all of a sudden the guys got in on the action last might too : )

Kevin and I started off the tour a tad late since the traffic in the Goldcoast right by Bloomingdale's is crazy at dinner time on a Saturday.  Our fabulous tour guide, Katie, actually called us to double check that we were still coming and everything was alright.  Quick side note I was emailing back and forth with one of the ladies from the Chocolate Tour office and she was so incredibly helpful and answered all my questions, amazing to work with.

Starting off the tour we just headed upstairs at 900 N. Michigan to Teuscher Chicago.  We got to try their Champagne truffle made with Dom Perignon Champagne.  So yummy!  They don't only do truffles, there were molded pieces, Jordan almonds, bars, caramels and so much more.  The coolest fact about Tuescher was that their chocolates are imported every single week from their kitchens in Zurich!

Window at Tuescher

Second we headed a few blocks away to More Cupcakes.  We got to try their signature More cupcake that is fashioned like a Hostess cupcake but waaaaaay yummier.  They had all sorts of delicious sweet and savory flavors.  Unfortunately they were out of the chocolate bacon one, our tour guide was raving about it.  Bethany and I ended up being smart and getting a mini cupcake flight to take home.  If you can't decide on one or two big ones it's best to go with six small ones right?  I tried the Salted Caramel one the other night pretty good ... tonight for dessert I'm going to try the Black and White mini cupcake.  

Our third tour stop was probably our favorite ... Hendrickx Belgian Bread Crafter.  This bakery is just a little hole in the wall corner of two skyscrapers type place.  Unlike the other places we got to try three different samples here and all were delicious.  My favorite sample was here the (very large) Country Bread.  I think the loaf was the size of my large Round Stone.  We took home a quarter of a loaf and have already enjoyed it multiple times.  For tomorrow's lunch I'm going to fashion a homemade egg salad sandwich with the bread nom nom.

Last but not least we headed to one of the bigger Chicago born institutions, Argo Tea.  The tasting there was a Chocolate Chai tea.  Not gonna lie I was not a big fan of this one.  Ever since I got sick on apples and cinnamon when I was younger I can't handle it and cinnamon really in anything is kinda bleh to me.  I did try it though!  I think next time I would get their Chocolate Mint Tea.  That's more my style!

Overall we had a great time with Chicago Chocolate Tour and would definitely do it again.  At $40 a ticket it's definitely a pricey tour but I have seen a few deals plus you can always check out the group rate if you've got a bigger group.  We will definitely be checking out the tour in suburban Geneva or maybe the hot chocolate tour this winter.  Anyway you want to enjoy your chocolate you can't go wrong with Chicago Chocolate Tour.


Dessert Pinterst style

I've been a terrible person, I've been totally ignoring Pinterest lately!  I know it's very sad about this fact and I feel guilty I haven't been giving it the attention it so desires.  Next week I have my other Gamma Phi meeting (where I get to start my Presidential duties) and the officers are bringing dishes for a potluck.  Since I'm going to be a little late I said that I would bring dessert!

Since I've been trying to get out of my comfort zone with cooking I've been scouring my Pinterest boards for something fabulous to make and share at the meeting.

Popcorn Cake?!?
I'm really leaning towards making this.  Mom has made this before and it's really yummy.  I was thinking maybe with Reeses instead too.
Low-Fat Candy Bar Angel Cake
This looks like it would be a nice low calorie recipe and pretty easy since I would totally buy the angel food cake : )
Whatchamacallit Krispie Treats
Nom nom!  I love me some Whatchamacallits.  This one might be too much work for the amount of time than I'm able to devote to making the dessert for right now.  
Peanut butter cereal variation on Rice Crispie treats maybe Reeses Pieces instead of M for an over the top peanut treat - might make these tomorrow for bake sale too :-)
Obviously you can tell that I prefer peanut butter and Reeses : )  New fun spin on an old classic. 

Definitely still leaning towards the popcorn cake.  There are just too many good looking recipes!  Now I'm going to go think about them alllll weekend : ) Have a good one! 


Giveaway Opportunity and things Kevin says

First off tomorrow is the big 1!!  I'm attempting to pull together a fabulous giveaway and I would love it if some of y'all would like to participate as well.  Shoot me an email and I will get you the details  : )  MuseumFanatic[at]gmail[dot]com
Now for hilariously ridiculous things Kevin says.  I think I might need to start writing them down and do a small weekly blurb cause he's just that amusing.  So yesterday I was finally able to go in and get my eyebrows threaded.  When I told him over the weekend that I made the appointment I had to explain what threading was and how it worked.  Let's just say he was more than a little confused.  Being the good wife I was I made sure he remembered I was going to be home late from work.

When I finally did get home and we were standing there chatting Kevin kept talking about spinning and how I got them spun.  Since I was only sorta paying attention as I was getting dinner ready too I was so utterly confused.  Obviously I was not the only since Kevin had been thinking allllll day that I was getting my eyebrows spun!

OH Kevin!


Tunes on Tuesday: Walk Like an Egyptian

I heard one of my favorite 80's songs today in the car and I just had to share my love today!

This one song that you literally cannot sit still while you listen to it.  I mean come on how can you not go all Egyptian arms in the car when you hear the first gong sound?  Kevin even gets down with a little arm movement when the moment arises as well.  Can I also say why when I try to 80's my hair it looks nothing like theirs?  I need to figure out the secret ... Maybe

And for two more people who can't help but dance ...

Yup I got the approval for ya!  Just a little taste of Becky and my weirdness from our college days.  Also note the fabulous semi matching Made in the 80's shirts.  So get up and start walking like an Egyptian across your room!!


Speech! Speech!

I know that I've been a little bad in not sharing too much related to our wedding and everything that goes along with that but I thought this would be a great time to share one of my favorite parts of our day. Becky's Maid of Honor speech. She wrote one of the most heartfelt things I've ever heard and I hope I can do her justice when it's my turn! I don't remember crying but oh man I was right there. She told me last week when she FINALLY sent me a copy (only took what one year and four months of asking!) that she a little last minute ad-libing but I think you get the gist : )

Once upon a time, I met Betsy and lived with her for two of our years at Valpo.  The first year we lived together, we shared a small room in Guild Hall complete with the oldest set of bunk beds known to man.  Betsy had the bottom bunk and I slept on the top and we would stay up late at night talking about everything under the sun. Regularly during these conversations we would discuss what I was going to say at her wedding.  I would tease Betsy that I was going to come up with embarrassing stories or tell all her deep dark secrets which she responded to by kicking the bottom of my bed causing the whole thing to shake and making me very uncomfortable…lucky for me I don’t have a bunk bed to fall out of today so that pretty much gives me free reign.

Betsy has told me on multiple occasions that she can’t believe how lucky she is to have found a guy like Kevin. And I get to see how lucky she is, every time the first word out of his mouth when he sees her is “hey gorgeous,” whenever I’m at a Stache’ show and I see him point to her whenever the band plays his and Betsy’s song, and when he looks deep into her eyes and it reminds me of how my dad looks at my mom after 35 years of marriage and four kids.

But I think that Betsy underestimates how lucky Kevin is to have a girl like her... because I know how lucky I am to have her in my life. I remember during my first semester of grad school calling Betsy in tears, I was alone in Montana, my advisor hated me, and my Grandfather back home in Michigan was sick,  Betsy simply listened on the other end of the line and I tried to talk in between sobs, she gave me hugs from afar and eventually calmed me down.  Two days later I got a package in the mail, amongst the goodies was DVD of one of our favorite movies, homemade Rice Krispie Treats, and a handwritten note saying everything was going to be ok.  

That is just the kind of person Betsy is, always doing whatever she can to cheer you up, never forgetting your birthday, ready to give you a hug whenever you need it (even if you are 1,500 miles away) not just someone who tells you she loves and cares about you but who finds every possible way to make you feel loved,  and she is the only person I know, that can passionately argue about the proper way to brown ground beef. (You can ask Kevin about that one)

It is true that Betsy is lucky to have found a guy like Kevin, and I’m not saying that Kevin is luckier to have found a girl like Betsy...but Kevin is luckier to have found a girl like Betsy.  Admittedly, I may have a bit of a bias...In my defense I have had random Spice Girls dance parties with Betsy on multiple occasions.  That hasn’t really happened with Kevin...yet.

So...I want us to raise our Betsy and Kevin...who are so lucky and blessed to have found each other.  May they live happily ever after.  Cheers.



The fall of freshman year of college my dorm wing participated in a time honored tradition of Sigma Chi Derby Days.  We were the Dirrty South aka 4 South wing of Lankenau Hall!  All of the ladies in our wing got super into the whole process and during all the events and whatnot I ended up meeting this girl, Becky, from the other end of the hall.  During most of the semester we sorta hung out some and talked.

Fast forward to second semester and my getting peer pressured into joining the radio station and having my show.  Being a lowly freshman I ended up with a late night weekend slot ... it might have been the 10-12 slot.  Becky ended up with the slot after mine ... or vice versa.  Since we had to walk allll the way across campus and we are both wimps decided to walk together then hang out for both our shows.  

After that semester we became fast friends.  Our shows were right next to each other for the next few semesters and then we eventually ended up with a show together too.  Becky and I ended up rooming together junior year.  Since then we've been just utter ridiculousness.  Junior year involved lots of dance videos, game nights, many dead fish and too many photo shoots ... some of which may or may not have involved a little drinking.  
Senior year we rocked things out.  Having three radio shows between the two of us and doing hilariously funny things on air.  Some day I will have the cassette tapes converted and share with you!  We cooked a Thanksgiving dinner for like 8-12 college guys and it was awesomely delicious.
Not gonna lie there were definitely times where we wanted to kill each other but that's what happens when you're unbiological siblings right?  That's just a little bit of our story from Valpo.  I still have yet to receive permission to post any of our videos yet but if I get it I will definitely be sharing some don't worry : )


Tunes on Tuesday: More Than A Feeling

Since this week is my BFF & unbiological twin's birthday I decided what better way to celebrate then to share our song.  Yes my best friend and I have a song.  I couldn't remember how exactly it came about so I had to ask her.  Our good friend Spata was hosting his radio show and like we did sometimes we went over to the studio to hang out.  He played "More Than A Feeling" by Boston and like we usually did we decided to dance around outside in the office area to it.  Since that time he would always play that song for us and it quickly became our song : )
The two of us goofing around at the station.

Enjoy the lovely 70's sounds of some wonderful Boston : )


What happened the weekend?

Seriously it's like the weekends just don't exist they go by so darn fast this summer (now fall ahhh!).  So as you can tell I don't usually do weekend posts ... well I used to then I had to save the fun-ness for the Thursday link up then that stopped.  This weekend was a fun one so I'm gonna share it!

Friday was tons of fun cause Kevin was filling in for 'Stache!  Plus Kelli came out to the show and we had a fun time.  They were actually splitting the time with another band which was nice since they had to all be up at 6 to head to Iowa for a wedding and I had some amazingness to accomplish during this weekend.

Sorry there are only a couple photos.  Kevin has the camera today and I wasn't fast enough in pulling them off!

Saturday I started off awesomely productive.  I got three loads of laundry done before the Laundry Troll popped her annoying head in!!  After that I was all set to run a bunch of errands when Stephanie was like you need to come out to Arlington Park my dad's horse is racing.  There was a little hemming and hawing on my part but I was like I've never been and I did say I would go the next time she raced.  So I put on a cute sundress and headed out.  This place is huge!  I mean it looks really big from the highway but it's seriously massive, just the area where the stables, the trainers, and the caretakers stay is like it's own little village.

Myself and Stephanie with the trainer

It was fun to sit in one of the cool boxes and everything.  This was my first time meeting Stephanie's parents and they were both super nice, her dad even gave me $5 to be on the horse haha.  Unfortunately she didn't win the race but did do a pretty good job keeping up with the boys until probably the last 10 seconds of the race.  Supposedly she's going to race again this season so hopefully I'll get to go again : )

The rest of Saturday and Sunday evening was spent doing amazing, genius things for my best friend Becky's birthday!  Obviously I can't share yet since her birthday is Saturday but needless to say I'm pretty sure I won't be able to top this one again.

Sunday morning was spent procuring a new little bistro set for our little balcony.
Threshold™ Savoy 3-Piece Metal Patio Bistro Furniture Set   
This guy had been hanging on at full price for a few weeks and they told me when the school stuff went on clearance so would the rest of the patio items.  Well it did!  It was about $50 plus 5% off with my red card and some giftcards to knock it down to $35 .... originally $100.  I'd say that's pretty good.  Michaels was good to me this weekend too, I found some fun things for Christmas presents!  Now I just have to actually sit down and make them!  Maybe next week ... : )



As I'm sure we all know with this weekend being Labor Day weekend every store and their mother was having deals.  I decided to take advantage of the Michael's deal ... 20% off your entire purchase yipee!!

I ended up O.D.-ing a little bit on crafts and ideas for crafts.

Like the crazy person I am (and I honestly do this every year seriously just ask Stephanie) I am already well into planning for Christmas presents.  I know I know It's only just September but I can't help it!! Since I want to do so many crafty things for so many people I feel like I should probably get started early so I can actually get them accomplished.

Kevin and I are working to clear up our dining room table.  Which has some how acquired half of the papers from our filing cabinet some how.  When that happens I'm going to give the Mickey Votive I decided on a whirl.  I have cute little vases I got from the Crate and Barrel outlet a month ago and I went a bit nuts and got a few different punches yesterday.

I some how discovered this whole world of glass etching in my multiple Michael's trips.  Everyone should be very proud though I didn't spring for the kit ... yet!! I did come up with at least two people who I could make presents for with the etching so I've decided if I'm good and do some of the tissue paper modge podge first I will allow myself to splurge next month : )

If you're looking for some awesome craftiness head to Southern Beauty Guide Chelsee is talking about how she used her Pampered Chef Tool Turn About for some awesomely different storage!