Wednesday, December 28, 2011

New Year's Reflections

I know that this blog is a little early but I have been sitting here reflecting over the past year (2011) before the new year starts (2012).  I have been reflecting on all of the good and the bad that has happened this year and wondering what 2012 will bring for my husband and I and what new adventures we will have in our life together.

Our year did not start off on the best note.  We ended last year with not knowing if I had cancer, they had attempted to do a bone marrow biopsy on me but had been unable to attain a sample.  So we had to wait and worry through Christmas and the start of the new year to find out what my diagnosis would be.  My doctor at the Cancer Center was able to obtain a biopsy from me the second time around.  That is right, I had not one but two bone marrow biopsies in a span of a month.  The second one was obtained in January, so then all we had to do was sit and wait for the results.  All I could think about was please Lord, not now, my husband and I had not been married for even a year yet.  During this time my husband's father was diagnosed with cancer and the outlook was not good, the cancer had spread all throughout his body and they did not give him long to live.  It was very hard to watch him suffering and to know that I might have cancer as well.

Unfortunately we lost his father at the end of January; he went home to be with the Lord.  Thankfully my husband was there with his father his last night, even though he was not coherent.  I would like to think that he knew his son was there sitting with him and I know that it gave my husband the peace that he needed.

His father's memorial service was held in Ava, IL, so we headed out of town to attend the service to gather with family and celebrate the wonderful life that his father had lived.  It was a beautiful service and a wonderful tribute to my father-in-law's life.  We will miss him but we know that he is in a better place and for that we are thankful.  Did I also mention that this was a day or two before my birthday?

My test results had finally come back and it was not cancer.  Praise the Lord!  I was so thankful and relieved. The diagnosis was Immune thrombocytopenic purpura  (ITP).  What a mouthful right?  Not the greatest diagnosis, but at least we had a diagnosis and it was not cancer.  I will not go in to everything that ITP encompasses because I could write another blog or book just on this subject.  The short of it is that it is a rare bleeding disorder/auto immune disease.  There is no cure for it, only treatments but at times it can be maintained without any sort of treatment. As long as you monitor your platelet levels and get treatment when it is needed you are able to maintain a normal life.  It is kind of scary and it was hard to absorb that this is something I will have for the rest of my life but I have come to terms with it now and have accepted it.  I do not worry as much about it as I used to.  I will also mention that I did have to go through 8 weeks of treatment, once a week, because my platelet levels had fallen so low and I was battling fatigue.  The treatments that I had are called IVIG and this stuff is liquid gold, figuratively speaking.  They try to charge the insurance company around $17,000.00 per a treatment, I think the insurance company ends up paying around $12,000.00 - $13,000.00 a treatment. See what I mean when I say they call it liquid gold? Thankfully we have wonderful insurance!!!!

Okay, so I know all of the above sounds bad.  What a way to start the year right????  However, it was not all bad, there were positives to everything listed above.  I did not have cancer, my husband's father is no longer suffering, we were able to spend time with his family at his father's memorial service (everyone is so spread out), I found out how great our insurance is ( I have the right to retract this statement at any time) and I have learned to manage my ITP.

Speaking of how great the insurance was, my husband had to have surgery on some of the veins in his legs.  When we switched to a new insurance company at the beginning of the year they approved his surgery right off and he was able to have his surgery in February.

Let's move on to some of the other positives that happened this year.  This is one of the reasons that I started my blog, to encourage us to get out more and enjoy life.  Life is to short and we have to live and enjoy it!

Like, I said my husband had his surgery and it was a success.  We celebrated our first wedding anniversary and we still are getting along.  :-)

This year I would say that we have really started settling in to married life and to our life in the Indiana/Kentucky area.  We started exploring the local area more and also explored outside of our area as well.  If you have followed my blog at all this year, you will see some of the different things that we have done.  We enjoyed a trip to Bowling Green, KY, visited the Corvette museum while we were there and also stopped in Horse Cave on the way home to visit one of the caves.  We were able to take a vacation to Gatlinburg, TN this summer and really enjoyed ourselves while we were there.  There have also been a couple of overnight stays in downtown Louisville, our little staycations.  And of course trips up to the central Indiana area to visit family and friends.

We have found a church that we enjoy attending and have also reconnected with my cousin and his family.  My cousin is the Associate Minister at the church we attend.  I enjoy going to the women's Bible study/book group that is led by my cousin's wife and we also love spending time with their three little girls.

My husband has started back to school working on his associates degree and he is really enjoying it.  The downfall is that some of his classes are two hours away, so this makes for some late nights for him.  It is all for the greater good though.

Now we come to the end of the year.  Right before Thanksgiving my husband's mother passed away during surgery from heart complications.  This was quite a blow and something that we were not expecting.  I could not even imagine losing two parents in one year and my heart ached for both him and for his brothers.  Not only did they lose one parent at the beginning of the year but they lost another parent right at the end.  I know that she wanted to join her husband and was really missing him, so I am glad that she is at peace now.  Unfortunately, we were not able to attend the memorial service because of my husband's finals.  Her memorial service was in December.  We were able to take off and head down to Poplar Bluff, MO and assist in getting some arrangements made before the memorial service.  We did this in November, right after she passed away which was during Thanksgiving as well.  My husband and I ended up eating at Cracker Barrel on Thanksgiving and it was actually very good!  It was something a little different, for the most part I am used to a big Thanksgiving with family and friends at someone's house.

This year I am sure that Christmas was a little sad for my husband, with losing both of his parents this year and not being able to celebrate it with them.  We enjoyed spending time with my parents and some of my other family on Christmas up in central Indiana.  The trips up there are usually short ones and I am always sad to leave but am thankful for the time that I get to spend with them, even if it is only for short periods.

Even though there is always bad that happens in life, I do feel very blessed to have a wonderful husband, family and friends. There is much to be thankful for and I look forward to what the new year will bring.

I will not make any resolutions this year only goals.  My goals are to continue to be the best wife and daughter that I can be, to be a great friend, to continue to lose weight, to eat out less and to continue exploring and enjoying life.

So here is wishing you and your family a Happy New Year! I hope you will join me in looking forward to the new year.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Memories

One of the best things about Christmas are the memories that are created with your family.  I love spending time with my family on Christmas, eating great food and enjoying the excitement on their faces when they unwrap their presents. It is not just one person that makes Christmas special but all of the different individuals that you spend Christmas with.

I have been very blessed to spend every Christmas with my parents, no matter where we have lived when I was little, or when I was in college or now that I am a married woman and have moved away. This year was no different then Christmas' past.  My husband and I headed out when he got out of work on Friday to stay at my parent's house for Christmas. This year my mother had Christmas eve off, so she wanted us to come up on Friday, so that we could spend Christmas eve and Christmas day together.

So, on Saturday we went to lunch with my parents and then my mom and I went to pick up my grandmother.  Ever since my grandfather has passed away and when he was in the nursing home, my grandmother stays over night at my parents house on Christmas eve.  This way she can enjoy Christmas morning with us.

That night we enjoyed driving around and looking at all of the beautiful Christmas lights that people had put up for the season.  Even though we were packed in my dad's car like sardines we had a great time!  I know my grandma enjoyed looking at the lights too!  After that we enjoyed prime rib at home, that my dad made.  Our old tradition was to have lasagna every year but since my husband does not really like lasagna, we did something different.  Note to my husband:  I get my lasagna back next year!!!!

Christmas morning had arrived, Santa had come!  It was time to open presents with my husband, mom, dad and grandma.  Ever since I was little I would get so excited for Christmas morning and would start waking my parents up at 4:00 a.m. to see if Santa had visited yet and if it was time to open presents.  I still get excited, not about Santa but just the day in general.  However, now it is my parents waking my husband and I up early in the morning to open presents!  I guess it is time for pay back, considering all of the years that I woke my parents up early.

After presents had been opened, wrapping paper and boxes put away, it was time to start cooking the Christmas meal.  This year family was coming to my parent's house.  Every year we usually rotate between my parent's house and my aunt and uncle's house.  I love everything about my mom's Christmas meal, the turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, noodles, green bean casserole and much much more.  There are to many favorites to name.

So who did we share our Christmas memories and meal with this year?  We shared it with not only my mom, dad and grandma but we also enjoyed sharing it with my aunt, uncle, cousin, his wife, their two little ones (ages 4 years & 6 months), my great uncle, my second cousin and his wife. We had a nice size group of people this year.

Christmas day had come to an end and it was time for my husband and I to head back home, since he had to work on Monday.  We had a wonderful Christmas with family and we were able to create Christmas memories together and with our family.  The only sad part about this Christmas is that we lost my husband's father and mother this year.  There were no new memories to make and share with them this year but we will cherish the Christmas memories that we had with them.

I hope that everyone who reads this blog (and even those who do not) had a wonderful Christmas and that you were able to create some special Christmas memories with your family and friends.  I know that my husband and I did!

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Groupon Date Night Adventure

Tonight we decided to have a mid-week date night.  The theme, Groupon date night adventure.

For our Groupon date night adventure our first stop was in Louisville, KY on Bardstown Rd.  Destination, Ramsi's Cafe on the World.  Just like their name their menu boasts a variety of different types of meals from around the world. It is a very interesting place to go, I am not really sure how to describe the decor or the flow of the restaurant.  I guess that I will say it is eclectic, just like their menu. The choices were overwhelming, do I try something different or do I play it safe.  Since there was another part to our adventure I decided to play it a little safe tonight.  We started out by ordering the Calamari Terra Santa and I was very impressed with how tender the calamari was.  Usually you do not get this type of freshness unless you are on the east or the west coast. Then for my main course I ordered the Crab Cakes, which were very tasty as well.  However, I think that I am not as in to crab cakes as I used to be, so in the future I will probably not order crab cakes.  My husband ended up ordering the Chicken Parmesan sandwich, he played it safe as well. I tasted it and I am not usually a huge fan but theirs was good, I was impressed.   The best part about our trip here was that they had my favorite drink in the whole wide world and that is a Caipirinha.  Did I mention how much I love this drink?

Overall the food was very good.  I would not be opposed to going again and trying something different, maybe not playing it as safe next time.  I do not think that we will make it one of our main haunts, as I felt that it is a little pricey for what it was but if we are feeling in the mood for something different we would go again. So if you are in the area and you are looking for something a little different, with some variety (Greek, Indian, Egyptian, Korean, Vegan, Vegetarian and so much more), then I would recommend giving this place a try, it really does have something on the menu for everyone.

Our second stop for our Groupon date night adventure was Lights Under Louisville at Mega Cavern, which is located in Louisville, KY off of Poplar Level Rd.  This was not our first trip to Lights Under Louisville, we also went last year.  However, this time I went armed with a Groupon!

Last year we waited in a line of cars for about two hours before we ever got to drive through the cavern to see the light show.  This year there was no wait, probably since it was a Wednesday night and it was after 8:00 p.m..  So we will have to remember this in the future.  Without a Groupon or some form of discount it is a little pricey, they charge $25.00 per vehicle.  Now if you have a car/van full of people then that is not a bad price but if there are just two of you then it is a little high.

I really did enjoy going again.  I love seeing their lights displays (which is all under ground in the cavern) and listening to the Christmas music that they have playing.  It is just a really neat sight to see.  Despite the cost it is something that, if you live in the area or are in the area, and you love Christmas, then you should take the time to see it.

So that concluded our Groupon date night!  It was great to get out with my husband during the week and have some time to explore and enjoy one another's company.  I think we really needed this night out!  I know that I had a great time and I believe that he did as well.

Here is hoping that you are exploring and having adventures of your own!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Family Time in Poplar Bluff, MO

Sadly my husband's mother passed away a little over a week before Thanksgiving.  So for the Thanksgiving holiday we headed down to Missouri to make arrangements for his mother's memorial service and to spend time with a couple of his brothers and their families.

To break our drive up on the way down we ended up staying at the Candlewood Suites in Cape Girardeau. The hotel was very nice and comfortable, from what I could tell, since we were not there for very long.  However, if we are ever in Cape Girardeau again I would definitely stay there again, no complaints.  I was actually quite impressed with Cape Girardeau, it appeared that there were quite a few sightseeing opportunities.  Since we were on our way to see family, we did not have time to take advantage of any of these opportunities but if we are ever in the area again I would definitely be be interested in exploring.

Since his mom had been living in Piedmont, MO, we made our way over to her rental house to meet up with a couple of his bothers and their families.  We all visited there for a while sharing memories and the brothers discussed arrangements that needed to be made.  After that we went over to the church and ate some dinner, played board games and caught up with one another on what was going on in life.

That night we checked in to our hotel.  We ended up booking a jacuzzi suite at the Holiday Inn, in Poplar Bluff.  There were a couple of issues with this hotel but overall we had a good stay and you could not beat the price, we have a family and friends discount that we get.

The following day was spent with family as well.  I really enjoyed the time that I got to spend with my sister-in-law.  We got to know one another a little better since we had only met one time at my husband's father's funeral.  I also enjoyed meeting my two youngest nephews.  The were true delights to spend time with!

Unfortunately, during this trip I was not able to go over the state line to Arkansas.  I wanted to add it to the list of states that I have visited and been to.  My total count is 28 or 29 states, I need to verify one location with my parents.  I have also been to four countries, not including the United States.

The trip ended to soon.  It was time to head home and say goodbye.  On our way home we stopped at Lambert's Cafe, the only home of  throwed rolls.  Yes, they really do throw rolls at you!  It was a neat place to eat at, with a really neat atmosphere.  Mainly fried foods, a little to salty for my taste but I am glad that we stopped there.

Overall, despite the sadness and the reason for the trip we had a good time.  The brothers were able to get some things done, in regards to his mother, we were able to spend some time with some of the family and the drive in MO was beautiful.

Hopefully, if we ever get down there again, it will be for a better reason and not because a relative passed away.

Monday, October 31, 2011

I Don't Want to Keep Up With the Kardashians

Exactly what my title says...I do not want to keep up with the Kardashians.

Now I do not watch Keeping Up With the Kardasians nor do I really follow any of them.  However, because they are in the public eye I do know some about them and know who they are if someone is talking about them. I am more of a Real Housewives girl, that is my secret pleasure.

Today it was announced that Kim Kardashian filed for divorce from her husband of 72 days, Kris Humphries.  For some reason this really burns me.  They spent 10 million dollars on a wedding, the wedding was a televised special and they file for divorce 72 days after they married.  Apparently they filed because they could not agree with one another on where to live.  He wanted to settle down in Minnesota and she wanted to stay in L.A. I feel like they just made a mockery of marriage.  Am I wrong?

Here are some of  my reasons:

1. You have only been married for 72 days, this was not some quickie Vegas wedding or even a quickie wedding.

2.  You spent 10 million dollars on a wedding, just to file for divorce 72 days later?  If I were her parents I would be sooooooooo mad at her. Heck, I would be mad at myself!

3. Things like where you live, children, religion, ect. should be discussed before you get married.

4.  Marriage is not always easy, you have to work at it and communicate with one another. If you love someone you try to work it out.

5.  If you have money like they do, why don't you compromise and split your time between the two places.  Buy two homes one in each place.  This is not rocket science.  

So I have to ask...Why?

A.) Was this a publicity stunt?  After all they did get paid for it to be televised...

B.) Are they really that in to themselves that they do not know how to compromise?

C.)  Do we feel bad for them because they realized they were making a mistake but unfortunately took it too far and did not know how to get out of it?  They are in the public eye so maybe this is plausible, maybe they just had to live a huge embarrassing moment in front of the whole world, whereas others who are not in the public eye could get a divorce and no one would ever know.

D.) Are they morons?

E. ) None of the above ?

F.) All of the above?

So please feel free to comment.  You know what my feelings are.  I would love to know what yours are.

By the way here is my disclaimer.  I am not in any way judging individuals who get a divorce.  Marriage is between the couple that is married.  Their struggles are just that, their struggles and what goes on in a marriage is private.  My issue is the quickness of the divorce, the reasoning (without any appearance of trying to work it out) and the amount of money they spent on the wedding.  

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Stir Crazy!

Lately I have been going stir crazy and I have felt cooped up.  I attribute these feelings to the lack of socialization  that I have had lately and that fact that I have been cooped up.  I believe that some of this stems from the fact that I now work from home three days a week, due to the bridge being shutdown.  Now I am in no way complaining about working from home because I do enjoy it, it is just that when you work from home you do not see anyone.  Sorry Tinsel but you do not count as human interaction since you are a cat.  Although I do know that she enjoys me working from home.  :-)

Some of the other reasons would probably be that my husband has been sick the last few weekends so we have been stuck inside on the weekends and I am stuck inside during the week, so it was driving me crazy.  Now I know that I can go out without my him and I do but since he was feeling very under the weather I stayed home and took care of him.  Last reason would be that he has classes some nights during the week so I am bored at home.  I really need to find a hobby or sign up for a class!  Again, I am not complaining, I am very proud that my husband is back in school and doing very well.  I am simply stating why I have been bored, ect.

So since my husband knows me so well and knew that I was going stir crazy he planned a surprise for me this weekend.  Drum roll please...

He planned an overnight getaway in downtown Louisville.  Priceline I love you!!!

He can read me so well and knew that I needed to get out so he booked a night at the Hyatt in downtown Louisville.  I guess he planned all of this on Friday before he went to class.  He even went to the florist and ordered a beautiful flower arrangement to give to me on Saturday.

So on Saturday we got up and worked around the house some, went to lunch at the Olive Garden and ran some errands.  As we were headed back home we pulled up to the florist.  I asked why we were there and he said that he had an order to pick up.  I was so surprised that he had gotten me flowers!  They are very beautiful and I absolutely love them.  Then we went home and packed for my surprise night downtown.

We had a wonderful and relaxing night and enjoyed our dinner at the Sports and Social club at Fourth Street Live.  The hotel was right next to Fourth Street Live and the weather was not bad for a quick walk over there.

Then on Sunday we enjoyed breakfast at Einstein Bagels and quick dip in the pool and the hot tub at the hotel.  Then sadly it was time to check out.  However, our weekend adventure was not over.  Next stop Louisville Mega Cavern to use our Groupon.  Since tomorrow would be the last day to use it we went and got our tickets and then went to Chilis for lunch.  He had not been to Chilis for a long time and really wanted to go.  So we enjoyed our lunch and then it was back to Louisville Mega Cavern for our tram tour.

The tour was awesome!  It last for about 70 mins. and you are pulled by a jeep.  It was really neat to learn about the history of the cavern.  I am so glad we went and would recommend it to anyone!

So tomorrow it is back to the real world.  I had a wonderful weekend and I am blessed to have a wonderful husband!  I feel very relaxed and I am ready for the hectic work week ahead.

So I sign off of here feeling less stir crazy and very relaxed.  Now to find a hobby...

Monday, October 10, 2011

Bad Blogger

So I guess it has been awhile since I have posted on my blog.  Bad, bad blogger.  We have had some adventures but I guess sometimes life is so crazy and hectic that I just do not sit down to take the time to update my blog.  Work has been very busy and Mike has started back to school and is busy with work as well

Maybe I should rename my blog to life adventures, not just local adventures.  I might seriously give this some consideration. Sometimes life is an adventure itself.

My husband and I did not really go anywhere new this weekend but we did have a new adventure of sorts.  We took my three little cousins out to McDonald's for lunch after Church on Sunday.  They are awesome little girls with their own little personalities and they are always such a joy to spend time with.  It was our first time taking all three of them out and it was a success.  We had a great time and I think that they had a good time too!  They sure do have their unlce wrapped around their little fingers.  Especially the little one.

That was our weekend, sometimes it is the little things in life that are so enjoyable.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Failed Adventure

Picture of the gun I own.

So what do I mean by the title Failed Adventure?  It is not that the adventure itself failed or that we did not enjoy the adventure.  What it means is that I got sick during the adventure and we were not able to complete it.  I felt so bad about this and I was embarrassed as well.  I guess I will start at the beginning.

My husband and I had signed up to take a  Basic Marksmanship (handgun) with Pierce Training in New Castle, Indiana.  My husband was super excited that I was going to take this class with him.  For those of you who know me really well, you know that before I met my husband I had never touched a gun and was not in to them at all, they made me very nervous.  When I met my husband that all changed, as this is one of his favorite hobbies. 

We took off on Friday night to head up to the Indy area.  We were on a tight schedule to arrive to the south side of Indy because my husband had a used gun on hold at a shop up there that he was planning on purchasing.  Due to traffic we were running behind so my husband called the store to let them know that we might be there 10 minutes after closing.  Since they knew he was planning on buying the gun and he knows them personally they said that was not a problem.  10 minutes before the shop was supposed to close he called them again to let him know he would be there 5-10 minutes after close, this time a new employee answered the phone and said they would not stay open, no exceptions.  The manager had left for the day so we could not talk to him.  I was shocked and baffled, they knew we might be a few minutes late and it is not like they are a department store or anything, you had a legit buyer that was coming in to make a purchase.  We tried to get there before they closed but we were five minutes late, he tried knocking on the door and calling but they would not answer.  I felt so bad about this and asked him if he knew of anyone else in the area that had one.  I then thought of Indy Gun Safety (we have purchased two guns from them in the past) and he said that there was one there last time but it was a little more expensive because it was new.  Since they are open only once a week and by appointment only during the rest of the week I thought maybe the owner would come over to make the sale, if he still had it in stock.  So my husband gave him a call, the owner was out of town but his wife was available to come over and meet us to sale it to us.  Yay!  I thought maybe the weekend was off to a bad start but it had just taken a turn for the better.  We were very grateful that she was able to do this last minute, this is what customer service is all about!  So we have now purchased three guns from them and I would not hesitate to purchase from them again.  I find that their prices are lower, probably because he keeps a small stock, a lot of what he does is training.  So if you are in the market to purchase a new gun, check him out and give him a call or check out his website.  I will not mention the name of the shop that did not sell us the gun because I felt that it was the new employee's fault.  My husband did PM the manager on INGO to let him know what happened and the manager responded.  Unfortunately, they lost a sale that day.

So I thought this was a good omen, everything had worked out, boy was I wrong.  On Saturday, the day of the class, I woke up and I felt a little off.  I figured once I got moving I would be fine.  We arrived at the class before 8:00 a.m. and got settled in, as the morning went on I kept feeling sicker and sicker but I was determined to continue.  I was learning some new techniques and how to draw from a holster and enjoying myself but I still felt sick.  After a quick break we were back at shooting again and I thought I was going to be sick, I will not get in to details on here.  I started walking towards the car and one of the trainers a cop and a trained medic followed me.  Talk about embarrassing.  He put me in his car, a cop car of course and no I was not being arrested. :-)  Turned the air conditioning on for me and gave me some powerade.  I am not sure if it was the heat (heat index was probably somewhere between 105 and 110) or if I had a bug.  I waited a while but we did not think it was a good idea to continue the class.  I felt terrible about this because my husband was really enjoying himself, I would have been if I was not sick and we had friends that were taking the class with us and I had wanted to spend time with them.  In the end we left and we were not charged for the class, which was super nice of them and they did not have to do this, since we did take 1/2 of it.  I believe they will be offering another class in September, which we will probably take.  So this is why it was a failed adventure.  Nothing to do with the individuals training us, it all had to do with me being sick.  So we will give it a try again another time.

I guess the weekend was not a complete waste because we did get to see our friends, even though it was brief and we got to spend a little bit of time with my parents, since we stayed with them.  I did start to feel a little better that night and we watched Tremors (a classic according to my Dad and my friend Lindsey) with my Dad, since my mom was at work.  On Sunday we relaxed for a bit, went to lunch with my parents, mom went to work and we left that night, I still felt a little sick that day.  I went to work on Monday and felt sick, so I stayed home today (Tuesday) and slept and I am finally starting to feel better.  Not sure if I had a bug or if it was the heat but thankfully I do feel better.

Hopefully our next adventure will go much better than this one. :-)

Sunday, July 17, 2011


Yesterday my husband and I went to Homearama in Prospect, Ky which is located in the Norton Commons neighborhood.  There were a total of 21 homes, the majority of the homes had a second story, sometimes even a third and the majority of them of them had finished basements.  This was approximately a total of 63 flights of stairs.  Can you say what a work out?

So why did we decide to make this one of our adventures? 

1.  We love to go and look at different houses, styles and sometimes pick up some decorating tips.
2.  It can be a lot of fun and all of the walking around is great exercise.
3.  I won free tickets from Today's Family Magazine.

Overall, we had a great time and enjoyed seeing some of the neat little touches that they added to some of the homes.  Listed below are some of  our favorite little extras.

1. The coffee maker installed in the wall in one of the master bedroom/bathroom area, along with the refrigerator.
2. Heated floors in some of the bathrooms.
3. The huge sleeping porch off of one of the master bedrooms.
4.  Many of the multiple little porches on most of the homes that had little fountains, screens that would go up and down, tvs on the porch, built in barbecues and fire pits, see through fireplaces.
5.  One of the master bedroom closets was to die for, this was in the same home as the coffee maker in the wall.
6.  Built in litter box area in one of the mudrooms
7. Dog steps that pulled out under a bay window for a dog to be able to get up to the window.
8.  Two of the basements were really awesome and it was a great use of the space.
9.  Some of the master bathroom showers were amazing.

The neighborhood definitely has a different feel to it.  If any of you have ever been to the Village of West Clay, in Carmel, IN it is very much like that feeling but it will probably be on a march larger scale.  Basically it will have that small village atmosphere with lots of different housing, houses that look like they are from the past, in a downtown era kind of feel.  They have small businesses, with apartments above, condos, townhouses, smaller homes, larger homes.  There is a fire station right in front, with a meeting hall, lots of little parks, small little shops and restaurants, dentists, doctors, dermatologists and they are in the process of building a YMCA.

Now, our personal feeling is why would you spend between $500, 000 up to $800,000 on homes that are anywhere from 3,000 - 4,500 square feet  and that are right on top of each other.  Is it that you are trying to keep up with the Joneses, or do you really want to live in one of these homes, are you truly in love with them?  Because for that amount of money, in this area, you could buy a very large piece of land, build an even larger home, with more extras and have an awesome in ground pool.  Below are some of the reasons that some of these homes were not that special.

1.  The kitchens were all basically the same, just with different color cabinets and they were actually pretty small for the price of the home.
2. There was nothing really special about most of the basements, I mean if you are spending this kind of money, I would want a rocked out basement.
3.  In a couple of homes they only had a stacked washer and dryer.  Are you kidding me?  These are how large and how expensive and I do not even get a decent laundry room.
4.  They tried to create an open floor plan in many of the homes but the space was not necessarily functional and flowed very oddly.
5.  In some of the master bedrooms there was not a large jacuzzi or garden tub.  Again, this was an are you kidding me moment.

These were just a few of our ????? moments.  We had others as well.

Overall, there were two homes that we loved almost all that they had done in them, where they did have the extras and two that were 1/2 way there.  The other homes just had bits and pieces that you could pull together.  So if we had the money, would we ever buy one of these homes?  Probably not.  However, we did have a great time and if you are looking for some entertainment that is not to expensive while getting a work out at the same time, then I would recommend going.  It is $10.00 per person, so for 21 homes, I think that is a great price.  However, my price was even better, I do love free!!

Until next time, keep on adventuring!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Smoky Mountains

So, we ventured out of Indiana and Kentucky over the Fourth of July weekend and headed down to Tennessee.  Final destination was Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg.  I decided that my husband and I needed to get away for a long weekend and have a mini vacation together. It is not that we do not ever get away, it is just that we have never been away together for more than a night, since we have been married, except for when we go to visit family on the weekends.  My husband and I did not even get to go on a honeymoon because he had been transferred and I was wrapping up my old job, so that I could start my new job and was in the process of moving my things down to his apartment.  So yes, after we got married we went right back to work. :-)  I thought it was high time that we took a vacation that was just not an overnight trip or visiting family!

So when thinking about where to go, I was trying to think of somewhere that was not to far of a drive but something that was different as well.  I came up with going to Gatlinburg.  I remembered that I had gone with my parents when I was about 8-10 and that my best friend had gone with us.  We had such a good time, I thought that maybe my husband and I could make some memories together there and since he had never been before and I knew that he wanted to go, this is where I decided that we would go.

I planned all of this in one week, it was a spur of the moment decision.  We have a family and friends discount that we can use at Holiday Inn hotels so I decided to see if we could use this and found out that we could.  There was availability at the Holiday Inn in Pigeon Forge, TN.

So I took Friday off of work to do some laundry and pack, plus I am trying to burn through some of my vacation days, since they expire at the end of September.  When my husband got home from work we loaded up the car, ran a couple of quick errands and headed out to go to TN.  We did not arrive at the hotel until about midnight and my husband was a little sore from the drive, however the pool was supposed to be closing.  The lady at the front desk was super nice and told us that she would not lock the pool doors up yet, so that we could go and use the pool and hot tub.  We quickly unpacked the car, dropped everything off and put our bathing suits on.  The pool water felt so great and after a swim we felt very relaxed.  When we got back to our room, around 1:00 a.m., what did we discover?  Well, we discovered that our room door was not locking on the outside, so you could push it in, this was not good!  We called down to the front desk to let them know, we were fine for the night, since we could use the dead bolt from the inside to lock the door, but we wanted to make sure that they could fix it the next morning so we could go out and enjoy the sights.

The next morning rolled around and we called the front desk to see about having someone come up and fix the door.  They said that they would send someone up right away, so we waited and waited, then we waited some more, no one showed up and it had been over an hour.  We were not very pleased about this since when you go to Gatlinburg, it is typically not to sit by the pool or in your hotel room all day.  My husband went downstairs to talk the the front desk again.  They tried to give him an excuse but he informed them how long we had been waiting and that we had not come to sit around all day, if he wanted to do that then he could have stayed home.  Way to go dear!  They arrived shortly after that and it took them another hour to fix the door.  Finally we could go out and explore.

We got in the car and the destination was Gatlinburg, so that we could grab some lunch and walk around all the shops and explore.  We decided to grab lunch at Dick's Last Resort, this was a bad idea.  If you go to Gatlinburg, do not go there!  They were trying to be like an Ed Debevic's but Ed Debevic's they were not and the food was terrible.  I would definitely NOT recommend this place.  After lunch, we headed towards the aquarium.  While walking down there we explored some of the shops on the way there.  Now, if you ever go to Gatlinburg, you MUST check out Ripley's Aquarium.  It is amazing and is absolutely worth the money!  They truly have one of the best aquariums that I have ever been to.  I was super impressed.  My husband and I both really enjoyed it and we were able to get a lot of great photos.  After the aquarium we switched sides of the road and looked in the other shops on the way back.  We were able to find some gifts for my parents, beef jerky for my hubby and a bottle of peach wine for myself.  We were both wiped out from the day, we did a LOT of walking.  So we found a restaurant called J.T. Hannah's and decided to have dinner there, it was not bad, the buffalo shrimp salad was actually pretty good. All, in all it was a wonderful day, despite the late start that we got due to the issues with our hotel room door.

On Sunday, we decided to sleep in and then drove up and down the strip in Pigeon Forge, stopping at some of the shops.  We also took a quick trip to the outlet mall to get my husband a new wallet from the Coach store, yes my husband LOVES Coach wallets.  I am so very proud of him!  We had a late lunch at Salsaritas Fresh Cantina, it is kind of like a Qudoba but much better!  Their chicken tacos were amazing, their salsa was just okay.  After that we took a drive through the Smoky Mountains, it is so peaceful and relaxing up there and much cooler temperature wise!  If you do go there you must take a drive through the Smoky Mountains! We had a late dinner at Tony Romas, definitely not somewhere I would go back to, not worth the money.  Then it was back to the hotel for a swim in the pool and a soak in the hot tub.

Then there was Monday, Happy 4th of July! I was sad that we were going to be leaving. We loaded up the car and checked out .  On the way back in to Gatlinburg we stopped to eat at Reagan's Broken Egg and Pancake House.  I think that this is the best place that we ate at our entire stay there.  Their pancakes and bacon were very delicious.  I would go back there and would recommend eating breakfast if you go there, do not eat breakfast at the Holiday Inn.  It was not very good.  After we ate we drove in to Gatlinburg to stop back in at a store that we had seen a piece of art work that we wanted to purchase and some other items.  We made our purchases and headed in to the Smoky Mountains for a scenic drive on our way home.  This kind of turned out to be somewhat of a disaster, we were stuck behind vehicles for about two hours or more. Well we finally found out why there was such a backup, a black bear had been spotted in a tree sleeping and everyone was slowing down to get pictures.  Unfortunately my pictures of it did not come out well, you could not see the bear in the photo because of the shade.  So although it was annoying to sit and not move it was really neat to see the bear!

This concluded our trip to Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, TN.  If you have never been before it is a definite must do, add it to your list.  We would like to go back sometime and stay in a cabin, play some miniature golf and go horse back riding. We had a wonderful time exploring and spending time together.  I was not to impressed with the way that Holiday Inn handled the door issue that we experience, so in the future I would probably stay somewhere else.  The food was not that great, except for Salsaritas (fast food chain) and the pancake place but in tourist traps you come to expect this.

Hope everyone is enjoying their summer and doing some exploring of their own!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

New Adventure For My Husband

Well my husband had a new adventure this weekend and he had a blast.  We went up to Indy so that he could take a home defensive shotgun class. The class lasted for two days (8+ hrs.) a day and was taught by Michigan Defensive Firearms Institute.  They are based out of Michigan but do travel to other locations from time to time. 

If you are wondering if I took the class, no I did not.  A shotgun class is not really my thing.  Have I ever taken a class?  Why yes I have!  I took the Women on Target Instructional Shooting Clinic back in April.

So while, my husband experienced a brand new adventure this weekend, I did not.  However, I did have a wonderful weekend visiting and catching up with family up in the Indianapolis area.  I was able to spend time with one of my best friends and we went to see Bad Teacher.  I was also able to spend time with my parents and visit my new baby cousin who was less than a week old.

As far as adventures go my husband gave his class an A+.  So if this is your type of thing then definitely check out one of their classes, if they are ever in your area. 

Stay tuned for more adventures, there are some that are planned for the near future!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Father's Day Weekend Adventures

Over the weekend my parents came down to visit my husband and I.  I am very lucky that my husband and parents like each other and get along very well!

My parents arrived on a Friday night and we had a reservation to eat at Maker's Mark Bourbon House and Lounge.  My husband and I had purchased a Groupon so that we could try this restaurant out.  I honestly have to say that I was a little disappointed, the food was not bad but it was not spectacular by any means, especially for the price.  For the price I would much prefer to spend our money at someplace like Sullivans or Mortons.  However, I am glad that we tried it.  I do not think that we will go back there for dinner.  However, if my mom were in town and we were just looking for a place to get an appetizer and some drinks then I would consider going there because the Warm Goat cheese skillet was amazing!  So if you do decide to go there you should definitely order this as an appetizer.

On Saturday we headed to downtown Louisville again for lunch, notice a pattern here, we ate out a lot over the weekend. This time we decided to check out the Bristol Bar & Grille.  I have to say I was impressed, the prices were not bad and the food was very good.  If you decide to check it out I suggest ordering the Green Chile Wontons with guacamole and the Crab Cake Sandwich.  Both items were delicious.  This is definitely a restaurant that my husband and I would visit again and there are multiple locations.  After lunch we decided to take a trip to the Louisville Zoo as none of us had ever been before.  I did not realize how large of a zoo it was!  We had a great time seeing the animals and walking around.  I really enjoyed this zoo and seeing all of the animals that they have there.  I was disappointed that the polar bear did not come out while we were there because this was one of the main reasons that I wanted to go.  My husband did end up buying me a polar bear stuffed animal from there, I guess because I did not get to see one. :-)  I think we spent about 3 1/2 hours there so afterwards we were all pretty tired.  If you live in the area or are visiting the area then I definitely recommend a trip to the zoo!

Sunday arrived, Happy Father's Day!  I was sad because my parents would be leaving that afternoon.  Before the left we went downtown again to drive around 3rd Street, there is a walking tour that you can do on your own to look at all of the old Victorian homes, you cannot go in the homes but you can walk on the sidewalks.  Since it was raining we could not walk around outside but we did enjoy the drive!  Definitely something to think about doing, especially if you are not looking to spend any money.

This concludes our adventures for the weekend.  We had a great weekend and I think we ate to much.  I will have to watch that and start incorporating more outings and not just restaurants on here.

Below is information on where you can find the places that we went to over the weekend. 

Maker's Mark Bourbon House & Lounge
446 S. Fourth St.
Louisville, KY 40202

Bristol Bar & Grille
614 West Main Street
Louisville, KY 40202

Louisville Zoo
1100 Trevilian Way
Louisville, KY 40213-1559

Walking Tour


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Zaytun - Mediterranean - Louisville, KY

Well, this is not a new place to my husband and I.  We actually go there probably a couple of times a month.

What can I say about this restaurant?  Yum!  I absolutely love this place.  They have some of the best gyros I have ever had and I have had my fair share of gyros.

It is a small and quaint little place.  If you go there I highly recommend ordering the tribal fries and the classic gyro.  When ordering the classic gyro make sure to ask for some red pepper sauce!

If you are interested in going to Zaytun, they are located at 2286 Bardstown Road
Louisville, KY.

Go on and go, you know you want a gyro. ;)

La Rosita, New Albany, IN - Mexican Restaurant

The other night my husband and I were deciding where we could go to dinner.  Now remember, we are trying to eat at new places from time to time.  Staying away from the norm like Olive Garden, Red Lobster, Don Pablos, ect.  We were not sure what we wanted or where we wanted to go.  I remembered that one time when we were in downtown New Albany, I saw a Mexican restaurant on the corner of Pearl Street.  I thought hey why don't we go try that place.

Well boy am I glad that we decided to try it out.  The food was amazing!  It is some of the best Mexican food that I had ever had.  I recommend trying their mole enchiladas and ordering their chips and salsa.

So if you are ever in New Albany, IN and you are looking for some place to eat, I highly recommend going to La Rosita, you will not be disappointed.

La Rosita is located at 336 Pearl Street, New Albany, IN.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Adventures In Bowling Green, Kentucky

A couple of months ago I spotted a Groupon (I absolutely love Groupon) for the Romance Package at Holiday Inn University in Bowling Green, KY.  I decided to purchase this since my husband had mentioned that he wanted to go to the Corvette Museum some time.  I figured that this would be the perfect opportunity to go.

I religiously watched Groupons in the area, hoping that maybe something for the Corvette Museum would come up but I had no such luck.  What I did find before our trip was a Groupon to Hidden River Cave in Horse Cave, KY.  So of course I had to make this purchase!  Although I never did find a Groupon for the Corvette Museum, I did find a coupon online for $2.00 off each adult admission.  Now our trip was planned.

My husband and I took off of work on Friday and headed down in the afternoon to start our adventure in Bowling Green, KY.  The drive down was scenic and enjoyable.  We finally arrived at the hotel and checked in.  The hotel is fairly large because it has a conference center attached to it.  The lobby was nice, with fountains, ect.  The rooms left a little to be desired, they were clean but it was older and the bed was very hard.  We went swimming in the pool and used the hot tub after dinner, which was very nice.  Definitely no complaints about the swimming area.If we ever make our way down there again we will probably check out another hotel.  I am not complaining though since it was a spectacular price with the Groupon. I should also mention that part of the romance package included chocolate covered strawberries and champagne, it also included the breakfast buffet in their restaurant the next morning. 

After we checked in we decided to go and get some dinner.  Instead of eating at a chain (remember I am trying to do new things) I  found a restaurant that I thought we might try, which had been mentioned in Kentucky Living Magazine (the magazine was another Groupon purchase, I told you I absolutely love Groupon).  The name of the restaurant is 440 Main and it was wonderful!  If you are ever in Bowling Green or driving through, I highly recommend that you stop there for dinner.  In fact my husband wants to try to plan a trip just so he can back and eat there, I had to laugh at this.  We started out with the Cajun Spring Rolls, which are stuffed with andouille sausage, chicken and monterey jack cheese and served with a mango BBQ sauce.  My husband loved these!  Since it was so hot out I was not really wanting anything as fried as this but the mango BBQ sauce was delicious. Instead I enjoyed their ceasar salad, which was very good.  Four our entrees my husband ordered the Kentucky proud black angus rib eye steak with melted garlic butter.  The steak was melt in your mouth, you barely had to use your mouth, I was in heaven when I tasted it.  I ordered the southern style crab cakes, which were also very good!  So I must say, I made an excellent choice for dinner!

The next day we checked out, after sleeping in of course and headed over to the Corvette Museum.  We had hoped to do a factory tour but they are only M-Thr., we realized this after we had already made our reservation, so we knew before we got there that we would not be able to do this.  The Corvette Museum was neat and interesting but not somewhere we will be going back to, unless of course it is to pick up a Corvette we buy, which is not anywhere in the near future, or maybe the future at all.  After our visit there we went over to Art's Corvette, a used dealership to of classic cars, just to walk around.  I had never been charged admission to walk around a dealership, but hey I guess everybody needs to make a buck.  My husband enjoyed it so that is all that matters.

Well that part of the adventure was over so it was time to head over to Horse Cave, to Hidden River Cave.  I had not been on a cave tour for years so I was looking forward to this, what I was not looking forward to was all of the stairs.  There are 230 stairs on your way down and 230 stairs to get back up.  I am not in shape at all so I was pretty nervous about this.  Not nervous about going down but about getting back up.  Well we made it down and it was very cool, literally and figuratively speaking.  The tour guide was funny and he was very informative about the cave and the history of it.  I even made it back up the stairs but those last ten stairs were rough and I thought I might die, okay maybe not for real but it was rough.  If you are in shape, trying to get in shape and think you can do this, then I think it is worth the tour.

This concludes our trip to this area of KY, if you are ever headed that way maybe this blog will help you! 

Why Blog?

My husband and I were married about a year and a half ago and we relocated to Kentuckiana.  I believe that sometimes we all get in ruts, meaning that we do not want to step outside the box and explore new things.  I found that more and more we seemed to be going to the same places to eat, doing the same things or just sitting on the couch watching tv or playing around on the computer.

Now there is nothing wrong with doing the familiar at times, or relaxing and watching tv, ect.  However, there are many things to do locally, if you just take the time to look. So recently we have been exploring more locally.

I guess you can say that this blog will be a review of places that we have been or that I have been recently.  For the most part they will probably be reviews from Kentuckiana, but at times we do venture out of the area, so I will post information about other places we have visited as well.  It will also help encourage me to get out and do different things!

Thanks for reading my blog!