Brian and I were fortunate enough to get tickets to the 51st Annual Candlelight Christmas Concert presented by Wichita State University’s School of Music.
The concert was awesome. I want to go again next year but I want to bring Brian’s parents next time. I think his mom would really enjoy it.
Brian’s parents who normally host Thanksgiving moved to Oklahoma during the week of Thanksgiving so we ended up hosting Thanksgiving at our house this year. Neither Brian nor I really cook so we went the easy route and ordered our holiday dinner from Fresh Market. It was a good move because the meal was delicious!
We had both ham and turkey, whipped potatoes, gravy, stuffing, corn soufflé, green beans, cranberry relish, and yeast rolls. Chad made scalloped potatoes and deviled eggs. Mom made lumpia. Brian made chocolate cobbler and we didn’t burn them this time. LOL. Everything was really good but the corn soufflé was clearly the star of the show. I’m not much into corn bread, but the corn soufflé was sweet and cake-like. I’m never eating corn bread ever again. Corn soufflé all the way. LOL.
Oh, and Brian’s mom left her buffet servers so after reheating everything in the oven we use the buffet servers to keep them warm. It worked out perfect. I’m thinking we may use these again come Christmas time. Speaking of, time to start planning the menu but, knowing us, we’ll probably just end up going through Fresh Market again.
Brian and I started our date night at Taste and See 2 in Old Town.
The restaurant has been open for several weeks now, but this is our first trip there since we both have been very busy.
Chef Jason Febres and Steven Bacci have really stepped it up. The place looks fantastic and the server uniforms look really spiffy.
We started dinner with one of our favorite tapas: queso fondue.
Brian had his usual, the real Cubano with truffle fries.
I wanted to be adventurous and try something that I’d never had before, the saltinbocca. How can you go wrong with chicken and prosciutto?
It was delicious. I even liked the mushroom and the cracker thing.
We left the restaurant very full and happy. The beers helped.
After dinner we went on to Abode to watch Blockhead perform. Reby and Aaron were there also. Come to find out, Aaron is a huge Blockhead fan.
We actually got a real treat last night. I had no idea that Aaron is Cutter J, the Absurdist. He’s amazing!
He makes music, plays with spoons, and even tap dances.
Oh, and Blockhead was really good too.
Brian really enjoyed date night. He thanked me several times for taking him to see Blockhead. Yup. That’s what I do. I plan great dates. LOL.
Here’s a link to Taste & See 2 on Urbanspoon.
I love this time of year not because I enjoy turning a year older but because there’s always so much going on. It’s usually around this time that I get my annual epic massage (the rest of the time we’re just getting deluxe massages). I actually like it better now that I’ve switched to deluxe massages for my regular massage because it makes the epic massages that much more special when I do have them.
Besides that, this is also around the time of Brew Ha-Ha at Flints Hills National. It is our most favorite fundraising event.
It was even more fun this year because several of my friends from work attended also. Darcy and Jason (above) attended. Derek, Carmen, Nick, Suzanne and her husband, Bridget and her husband, and Reed and his wife were just some of the ones we got to hang out with at the event. I heard that Don and Denise were there too as well as Jim and Carol, but we didn’t ever run into them.
We also ran into some friends we don’t ever get to see Sarah and Tony Patterson and Ann and Jeremey Wilcoxon. I went to grad school with Sarah at Wichita State. We both completed our MBAs in 2008. Brian and I met Ann and Jeremey at Jeff and Stacy Christensen’s sushi party years ago and we’ve been running into them at Brew Ha-Ha ever since. Not a lot of people in my department at work were interested in Brew Ha-Ha when I first started attending so it was always nice (and still is, even though there’s a bigger group from my work attending these days) to see some familiar faces.
Anyway, that’s one of the reasons that I love having a Facebook account. Being connected on Facebook makes me feel so much more intimately connected with friends who I only get to see once every few years.
I hadn’t had a real vacation since this crazy year started so for my birthday I treated myself to a couple of days of vacation, with no specific agenda in mind. Brian was actually surprised as that is not my style. I’m never one to waste a vacation day. I only take vacation days whenever we are traveling somewhere, I have a test or school project, I have some sort of medical or dental appointment, etc. I am so crazy that when Brian wants take a vacation day to veg around the house, I actually either talk him out of it or come up with errands or some sort of agenda for him so as not to waste a vacation day. I’m just not the sleeping in and vegging kind of person. I prefer my days to have purpose.
As luck would have it, I got to spend my vacation days Ching-style. Bybee Electric arrived at 8:30 AM on Thursday to work on moving the power outlet for our new range and Brian’s mom came over around the same time on Friday while their house, which is about to be no longer theirs (they accepted an offer on it) was inspected. I didn’t get to sleep in on either of my vacation days, which is fine by me. I prefer to have something going on than nothing anyways.
I took advantage of my free time on Friday to pick up some last minute party supplies (paper plates and plastic forks and stuff). I also picked up some take out from Panda Express for lunch. Brian came home so the three of us — Donna, Brian, and I — had a nice lunch together.
After Brian and his mom left, I spent the afternoon getting a pedicure at Serenity in Derby (their pedicure area is pretty but not that comfortable; I couldn’t fully relax and lean back because the bench is stationary/fixed to the wall and not adjustable so it’s not ideal for short people). They had a $25 Autumn spice pedicure special though, so it was worth a shot. Besides, it gave me an excuse to stop by mom and dad’s.
My hair appointment at Sami Halaseh followed. It’s another place I haven’t tried but I got a gift certificate for a free Aveda perfume for my birthday so I looked up different Aveda salons in town. I only get my hair cut about two or three times a year so I’m not attached to a particular salon or stylist (unlike my waxings which occur every couple of weeks pretty much; I would be a mess if Patricia moves or retires). In my world a haircut is a luxury but a waxing is a necessity. LOL. Anyway, the important part is that I felt like my two vacation days were worthwhile and productive.
The one thing that bummed me out is that I wasn’t at work on Halloween so I missed out on seeing everyone in their creative costumes.
Lucky for me, I have awesome coworkers who sent me pictures so it almost felt like I was there. Thanks, Isaac! These are just a few of the people in costume. I heard that the participation rate was so much better this year. I can’t believe I missed it!
Speaking of Isaac, I’m also disappointed that I missed seeing him get a pie to the face. LOL. It was all in good fun, though.
I always have to come up with multiple costume ideas every year. I’m a joiner so I try to participate in work activities whenever I can. Halloween is one of my favorites. So I can always count on needing a work-appropriate costume for work and several other costumes for the Halloween parties.
We had a Halloween poker thing at Rune’s last weekend, which fell on the same night as the Fabulous Fleshtones’ annual Halloween bash. I think it’s the first time that we missed it. Although, when we went last year Brian got a speeding ticket so understandably we wanted to do something different this year.
Here are some photos from the Halloween poker party at Rune’s…
I dressed as a black bird. Brian was supposed to be a bird watcher, but we couldn’t find his binoculars so he just ended up looking like a tourist. I don’t think I got any photos of him from that night.
Albert won the costume contest. Dressing in drag always trumps all other costumes it seems. We’ll have to do better next year. =P
Rune’s parties are awesome because poker is usually involved, there’s always plenty of food, and his “loser’s lounge” is a slick movie theater room. You almost want to lose on purpose. Okay, not really.
Since Rune got dibs on October 26, we had to move our Halloween party to November 2. It worked out because we got to start something new, what we now call a “Post-Halloween Bash” which is perfect in all aspects because costumes are always cheaper right after Halloween. And, who says costumes are only reserved for Halloween? We also got an extra hour of revelry because Sunday is when we fell back out of DST.
Here are some of my favorite photos from the party last night…
Our favorite Vikings, Rune and Kristen…
Zumba ladies in the house!
David and Donna came as packing boxes.
Our favorite Romans, Paul, Carla, and Elrond…
Our favorite sisters…
Our favorite rednecks, Laura and Chad…
I must say, the Google glasses finish off the look! LOL.
Catniss and Prince. All I have to say is that I’m glad I’m not the only one who had to keep explaining my costume all night. Thank you, Hideki!
Domestic goddess with her favorite 70s pornstar, Jay Dildo. =P
Christina and Kasey.
Paul found his spot on the sectional and didn’t budge for most of the evening.
There were so many costumes I loved, Alison’s costume is one of them.
If you don’t get it, you need to watch this video.
Thank you to Andrea and Hideki for my PSN card, and to Meader for bringing all his Rock Band games and the spare guitar. We are going to need to invest in our set up because we were slumming it last night.
There’s always some crazy, weird things going on…
We had more people at the house last night than we’ve ever had. I was amazed. I always invite a ton of people, but usually people don’t show up. That is kind of what I expected for the most part.
Brian said he was actually glad that some of the people we were expecting couldn’t make it because we were running out of places to put everyone. We put the leaf in the breakfast table so we could seat eight there in addition to the eight at the regular dining table and we still had no room. People were everywhere. Brian thought our floor would cave from all the weight. LOL.
We finally just had to direct the people who were done eating downstairs. The best way to do that was to move the booze down there. Rock Band promptly commenced. But then Rock Band was so loud that we had to move Cards Against Humanity upstairs because we couldn’t hear each other. It was a night of improvisation.
Anyway, the house passed its stress test as did Brian. For the first time ever, we made a big enough mess that we couldn’t pick everything up before bed. I hate, hate, hate leaving a mess but we didn’t have a choice. We were both pooped. We actually didn’t get everything put back to normal until today.
Whew! So glad that is over. Until next year!
Suzanne, Misty, Brian, and I had a blast at the Children First fundraising event at Loft 150 tonight. Thank you so much to Suzanne for the invitation and tickets.
Annie Up performed. I’d never seen these guys perform before. They’re actually pretty good. I may try to catch them again at one of their future gigs.
You’ll be able to catch Annie Up at the Kansas Star Casino on Thursday, October 17; Oeno on Friday, October 18; Port of Wichita on Friday, October 19; Botanica on Friday, October 25; and Boo and Brew on Saturday, October 26.
Filipinos throw the best baby showers!
Here are some pictures from Gina Ann’s baby shower last Sunday.
Cia, Gina Ann, Glenda, and Ginny.
Monica, Ginny, Andrea, and me.
Brian and Tita Sol.
Brian and Tita Tessie.
Me and Tita Sol.
The official Zumba table.
It was a fun baby shower and I ate way too much!
We had a double photo-bomb. LOL.
Zoobilee was a blast as always. Every year we tell our ourselves that it will be our last and yet we find ourselves back again. It’s just really hard to stay away knowing that all of our friends are there. We ran into so many familiar faces. It seemed like everyone in Wichita was there last night actually. Click here for all the photos that we’ve taken from last night and Zoobilees past. Until next time.
Brian and I were deeply involved with the Labor Run, a fun run (or walking) event benefitting the Wichita Treehouse organization. The Treehouse is an organization that helps economically challenged moms get back on their feet by providing valuable education/training and also low-cost baby items.
Brian and I typically do volunteer work that is low commitment. We sign up to volunteer, we show up and work a few hours (taking it very seriously, of course – Brian and I are nerds like that), and then go home. Actually, Brian hates volunteering (not only is he uncharitable with his money, he is equally uncharitable with his time) so I usually have to drag him into it. He doesn’t do volunteer work very often but, when he does volunteer, he doesn’t do it half-assed. That is for sure.
We got involved with the Labor Run from the very beginning because my friend (coworker) Natalie is on the board. She mentioned it to me at the beginning of the year. I told her that I would totally support her and to just let me know what I could do to help. Naturally, I dragged Brian with me. He needs to do some volunteer work and he would never get it done unless you make him. These ideas just don’t pop into his brain. Seriously, this man would rather sleep or watch movies or play video games in his spare time. Unfortunately, he is married to me so that rarely happens. I’m always running around doing something. I never have any spare time left and, since we pretty much do everything together, neither does he. But I digress… Back to my Labor Run story… When Brian and I attended the very first planning meeting, Natalie’s boyfriend Marvin was there. As luck would have it, Brian and Marvin knew each other over ten years ago during Brian’s stint at T-Mobile (then Voicestream Wireless). Brian joined Voicestream in 1999 and left what was T-Mobile at that point in 2004. I think Marvin started working there shortly after Brian and has been there ever since. He is now a successful supervisor there. Small world, right? Well, Wichita is pretty small. Anyway, that helped a lot to get Brian engaged in the Labor Run project because then he wasn’t the only significant other helping out and attending all the meetings.
Here’s a picture from our last meeting before the event. We were sorting and folding t-shirts; stuffing bags with goodies, flyers and coupons; and doing final preparations.
Misty helped too.
I think this is where we had to go through the envelopes to look for shirts. Misty arrived late and didn’t realize that there were two different types of shirts — regular adult shirts and youth shirts. I think she was grabbing regular small shirts instead of youth sized small shirts so we ran out of small shirts and ended up with extra youth shirts. Oops! We got it all figured out though.
Fast forward to Labor Day, the day of the event…
The Wheels ladies led by Pat Thompson and Crystal Wiley warmed us all up.
Everyone was dancing — runners, walkers, spectators, and volunteers.
Even Natalie’s mom got into it. Check her out in the above photos.
I thought it was a pretty successful event, considering it was our first and we didn’t really know what to expect. These three people (Natalie, Brian, and Rachel) were key to making everything happen. I’m most proud of Brian because volunteer work is normally not his thing and he gave the Labor Run his all. Way to go, baby!
Natalie did a fantastic job of organizing everything and coordinating all of the effort. I can’t imagine how she must have felt because there were times where even I felt overwhelmed and I only had a small part.
This is a picture of another friend (coworker) Tracy. She’s going through the elaborate (but fun) obstacle challenge that Marvin put together.
Tracy and her daughter Kayla had a mother-daughter bonding day… No hugs after getting drenched in fake (but gross nonetheless) baby poop.
Kayla was a good sport. Tracy said she to wanted walk part of the way through the run but Tracy made her keep going. Kids have way more energy than they realize because she was fine. She even had enough in her to do the obstacle challenge; though she popped her water balloon baby and didn’t have the opportunity to complete the course. Tracy completed the obstacle challenge course without killing her water baby. As can be expected. She is a mom and has tons of experience. LOL.
After seeing how the obstacle challenge works, some people opted to wear trash bags. Smart move. I had a lot of fun watching everyone go through.
We were at Sedgwick County Park from about 6 to 11 o’clock that morning, but it went by pretty quickly. I actually felt rushed in the morning because everyone was starting to show up and we weren’t quite ready. It was a successful event, but it wasn’t perfect. We learned a lot. Next year it will get even better. Mark your calendars!
Brian got some awesome panoramic photos at the ball the other night.
Our entire family got a table to ourselves. It worked out great.
We had a great turnout. Tita Tessie said this year had the best attendance ever. Over 350 people attended. For us, I think this is the first time in eight years that our entire family has attended. It was also Jennifer Cannady’s first Filipino ball.
Here are some more of my favorite pictures from the gala.
My goofy husband (above) and our adorable nephews (below).
Mom and dad.
Eli and Brian.
Logan and Jenni.
The three debutantes.
Jenni and mom.
Brian’s barong came off before the evening was over.
Tita Rose and me.
With Tita Tessie and Tita Ellen.
With the two Jennifers. The only one missing was Jen Teves.
I still remember my very first ball. We had just moved to Kansas and I got roped into participating as a debutante. I borrowed one of Victoria’s dresses (one of Tita Lynne’s daughters) so that we wouldn’t have to spend hundreds of dollars to buy a ball gown. Tita Esper, another one of mom’s good friends, was nice enough to volunteer her son Victor as my escort.
The dance floor seemed so huge back then. It’s amazing how things that seem big when you’re young get smaller with age. Kind of like the Big Mac.
Anyway, the dance floor was like a postage stamp on Saturday night. There was barely any room to move. Maybe it’s not just my imagination. Maybe the dance floor really did physically get smaller to allow for more tables because of this year’s record-breaking attendance.
The dancing went on all night. Here’s a picture that Brian took.
Tita Tessie hired The Source. They played lots of contemporary music and did a great job overall. Even when they were on break though, the dancing never stopped. At one point, Brian and I got pushed toward the stage when a line dance broke out. This one woman who I’d never met before (who may or may not have been intoxicated) fell backwards at the edge of the dance floor and grabbed Brian’s jewels. I asked Brian afterwards if that woman copped a feel and we both laughed at the thought. Of all of the places she could grab to steady herself, she decided to grab his crotch. LOL. Brian said she seemed pleasantly surprised rather than startled when it happened. It was more like, “Ooh la la!”
I had forgotten how much fun the balls can be. They used to bore me to tears when I was younger. Now that I’m officially one of the oldsters, I actually enjoy myself more. That could be because I can drink now. That always helps.
Brian and I danced a lot. I’m glad that I brought dancing shoes. I never would have made it halfway through the night if I stayed in my WH|BM heels. By 11 pm we were both danced out and were ready to call it a night. Having both done some drinking, we were grateful to live just around the corner from the Marriott Hotel (yet another unexpected perk of living in the wrong part of town, or so we thought when we originally bought our house; our house is really growing on us though).
Check out my Annual Filipino Ball collection on Flickr for more pictures from the 26th Annual Filipino Ball and previous ones. Enjoy!
The weekend is winding down. It has been a productive one. My life can seem exhausting at times, but it’s also a lot of fun.
On Thursday we were at the jazz concert at Bradley Fair. Those of you know know us well know that it’s our favorite thing to do during the month of June.
On Friday night we were at the Alfresco Gala at Botanica. Misty got some tickets from Tammie and she invite me and Brian to join her. Thank you to Misty and Tammie for hooking us up. We had a lot of fun eating, drinking, and listening to Blue Eyed Soul. Brian and I even got to dance a few times.
You can see more pictures from the Alfresco Gala here. For more information about the event, click here. I believe it is an annual event. If you missed it this year, you can go always go next year. It’s a lot of fun.
Speaking of fun, I’d forgotten how much fun the Filipino ball can be. It has been eight years since we last went. I will be posting about it shortly so be sure to check back.
Today we had our personal training appointment at the YMCA. Then we did some yard work. It has been one heck of a weekend. I’m looking forward to relaxing the rest of the evening. How about you? How did your weekend go?