Tuesday, November 21, 2017

a christmas story

our second show of the broadway tour season was the national tour of a christmas story this weekend.  we both worked the very long two-day load in as well as the load out, and ryan had show call for all five shows.  although we didn't get to see each other too much, it was nice that we were both on the electrics crew together for the in and the out, and got to see each other a little for breaks in between. 

since our load in ran right up to the start of the first show on friday night, and since we had driven together, instead of going home i decided to stay and see the show by myself while ryan worked it.  i bought a cheap seat up in the very back of the balcony to watch the show.  we did manage to sneak in a quick dinner date at our favorite thai restaurant across the street between shows on saturday too.

love, laurie

Monday, November 20, 2017

dear tech gods, send help!

yesterday morning, i connected my iphone 7 to my imac to sync it in order to load a playlist of music onto my phone for my dance studio's christmas show.  after syncing my phone, itunes told me that there was a software update available for the phone (iso 11.1.2) so i clicked on it to do the update.  however, something must have gone wrong because the update never finished successfully and my phone has been stuck on a white progress screen for 24 hours now.

i have googled everything i can think of and have tried all of the "tricks" in the book.  i've held down the power button and the volume down button simultaneously until the phone shut off and then kept holding until the apple logo appeared . . . multiple times!  i've unplugged it from the computer, re-plugged it, plugged it into the charger, unplugged it . . . it died, it came back to life.  all of this and 24 hours later and i still cannot use my damn phone!

every time the phone turns back on, it goes to the white downloading progress screen and looks like it's nearly done (it's like hanging out around 99% completion) however it never finalizes.  i do not want to force a factory reset because i do not want to loose everything on my phone that is not backed up!  i have some important stuff on there from over the weekend from work which didn't get backed up yet.

i'm praying to the apple tech gods for help because i'm ready to throw this thing out the window and seriously need to be able to have access to my phone because of work!  it was a nightmare yesterday trying to figure out my sunday work schedule details with no phone (and nerve wracking driving in a snow storm knowing that i had no connection to the outside world).

. . . needless to say, if you need to get a hold of me you can't.  send an email or send up smoke signals.  in the meantime, i'll be over in a corner weeping and cursing technology.

oh it's definitely monday.
love, laurie

Friday, November 17, 2017

national homemade bread day

today is national homemade bread day and goodness gracious, ryan and i both love bread!  this week i made homemade cast-iron skillet rosemary focaccia bread which tasted great but didn't rise like i had hoped.  oh well, it's a good excuse to try again!  here are some of our favorite bread recipes:
fluffy white sandwich bread
whole wheat rosemary bread
homemade soft pretzels
cheddar and honey cornbread biscuits with parsley and chives
corn and cheddar scones
sun-dried tomato, chive, and asiago cheese mini scones
individual cornbread squares
rustic cast-iron skillet irish soda bread

and let's not forget sweet breads too:
chocolate chip banana bread
zucchini bread
cinnamon rolls

happy baking!
love, laurie

Thursday, November 16, 2017


on saturday morning, we had a little bit of time together before ryan had to leave for work and before i had to get ready for the gala.  we sat on the couch together to stay warm with some hot cocoa and got caught up on episodes of cake boss  recorded on our dvr.  of course, leko came up on ryan's lap to join us.  i loved the way he crossed his arms as he sat so proud on ryan's lap.  what a cutie!

love, laurie

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

i can't even . . .

yup, this is a real thing.  yup, you can actually purchase these pants.  yup, society has gone too far once again.

love, laurie

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

fighting the urge to hibernate

ugg this weather does not feel like fall at all, instead it feels like winter.  the temperatures are freezing cold (literally below 32 degrees most nights), it's overcast, and most of the leaves have fallen off the trees.  i'm not ready for the depressing slump of winter weather yet and it's taking all of my strength to fight the urge to just climb in bed with leko and hibernate until spring!

love, laurie

Monday, November 13, 2017

a night out at the broadway theatre league gala

on saturday evening i had the opportunity to attend the broadway theatre league's annual gala.  i have heard about this event for years (this year was their 11th gala), and ryan has even worked the event in the past, but i have never attended it.

i've mentioned before that ryan and i both work as stagehands for the international alliance of theatrical stage employees union.  in addition to being a member of the union, i am also the chair of the education committee for our union.  since i am the new chair this year, i was offered the chance to attend the gala to represent our union which works for the broadway theatre league.

it was a black-tie affair complete with a red carpet.  i found out pretty last minute that i was going, so i pieced together an ensemble in just a few days (a total cinderella moment).  i borrowed my neighbor's prom dress, borrowed my mom's matching diamond ring and earrings, re-wore my wedding heels, and did my own hair and makeup.

i had fun getting ready for the event and a lot of fun at the gala.  ryan was not able to go, but i was excited to be there with several people who i know well.  i mingled, ate, and danced on the dance floor in front of the band playing until the last song at the end of the night.  it felt like a combination of an adult prom and my wedding reception!

i really wasn't able to get many photos at all, but here are a few . . .

^i wish this picture wasn't so blurry, but you get the general idea.  it has been years since i've done my hair in an up-do.  those two star hair pins are special to me because they are exact replicas of the swarovski hair pins that emmy rossum wore when she played the role of christine in the phantom of the opera movie!  i was happy to finally have a chance to wear them.^
^the theme was black and gold, and the decor was absolutely beautiful.  i felt like i was at an elaborate wedding.  that gold star on my napkin was solid chocolate too ;-) ^
^i'm so glad i was able to get these two pictures with my two mentors from college who are now close family friends as well as co-workers!^
^i stayed until the end of the evening and they were giving away the centerpieces.  it was too beautiful not to take home with me.  as soon as i came in the door, leko gave the centerpiece a thorough investigation.  needless to say, we are now enjoying it's beauty from atop our refrigerator because that is the one place he cannot get to it to chew on the eucalyptus leaves!^

love, laurie

Friday, November 10, 2017

fun links

since it's friday, here are a few fun links i found around the internet recently . . .

1. in case you're one of the folks having trouble with the new update

2. 25 helpful tips for baking cakes

3. i'm not wild about the idea of automated grocery shopping

4. this is interesting

5. clever photographs

6. what a great invention

7. super cute thanksgiving garland

8. epic email and text fails

9. the video of this ballerina on the ellen show made my week (what she does with her feet at the 29 second mark of the video is unreal!)

have a great weekend
love, laurie

Thursday, November 9, 2017

veterans day flags

for the past several years, the student veterans alliance at the university where i work has displayed thousands of american flags on campus in honor of veterans day.  this year they did their "flags for the fallen campaign" again, displaying over 7,000 american flags on the campus lawn.  each flag represents a fallen service member.

the flags are on display all week and i drive past them every morning on my way into work.  it's really something to see the thousands of flags arranged in perfectly straight lines, blowing gently in the breeze.  the project is such a lovely tribute to the veterans who served our country.

love, laurie

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

is it fall or is it winter?

this photo of leko is the new background image on my phone.  i love it so much because it really sums him up perfectly right now.  the weather has been incredibly cold the past few days (hello, first snowfall yesterday!) and when leko gets cold he wants to cuddle with us.  i positively hate the cold, but the one thing i love about it is getting to cuddle with this lovable kitten!

it was so cold that he didn't want to get out of bed this morning when my alarm went off for work.  he was tucked under the covers with me and we were keeping each other warm  i think the only thing that is going to get me through the day today is remembering that i have this guy at home waiting for me tonight!

stay warm!
love, laurie

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

straight no chaser

on saturday afternoon, before we celebrated my dad's birthday, we went to see the straight no chaser speakeasy tour at the state theatre in easton.  ryan's parents have seen snc in concert before, but we never have, so it was a good opportunity for us all to go together when we found out their tour would be performing so close to where ryan's parents live.

i bought the tickets for the show for ryan as one of ryan's birthday presents all the way back in august.  ryan's mom picked out our seats which turned out to be in the second row!  we felt like we were practically sitting on stage with snc!  having only ever seen youtube videos of snc before, we weren't sure what to expect from the concert, but we absolutely loved it!  they reminded me so much of a modern day frankie valli and the four seasons.  we recognized all of their music and were so incredibly impressed by their talent.  it was easy to forget that we were listening to an a cappella group!  a few photos from saturday . . .

during the show, snc took a photo of themselves on stage with the entire audience in the background.  i saw bands do this several times this summer when i was working the outdoor shows at our local concert pavilion.  this was the first time we were ever in one of these photos.  since we were in the second row you could actually see us!  see . . .

love, laurie

. . .

(ps: the audience photo is from snc's facebook page.)

Monday, November 6, 2017

celebrating dad's birthday!

on saturday, we got together with our families to celebrate my dad's birthday.  we all went out to dinner and then came back to ryan's parents' house for cake and presents.  it was a nice night spending time together and celebrating my papa!

love, laurie

Saturday, November 4, 2017

happy birthday, papa!

happy birthday today to the world's greatest dad!

happy birthday, papa!
love, laurie

Friday, November 3, 2017

we got lasik eye surgery!

after years of thinking about it and putting it off, ryan and i finally went ahead and got lasik (laser eye surgery)!!!  let me tell you, this has been a long time coming.  we have each wanted to get our vision corrected for years, but have been delaying the surgery forever for multiple reasons.  now that it's all over, we are so glad that we did it.

i have worn glasses since early elementary school and contacts since high school.  ryan has worn glasses since middle school and contacts since college.  both of us were over the hassle of wearing contacts and sick of the yearly expense to outfit the two of us in contacts.

the process leading up to the surgery day was a long one!  we had to have our contacts out for 3.5 weeks (a.k.a. torture) so that our eyes could go back to their natural shape without contacts, go through multiple tests to make 100% certain that we could undergo the surgery, and have our eyes extensively mapped by lasers and computers.  all of the work leading up to the surgery was stressful because at any time you can be told that you are not a good candidate and cannot move forward with the surgery.

the day of the surgery was "easy" compared to all of the prep work.  although we were in the surgery center for several hours, we were only on the operating table for a few minutes each.  our custom refractive surgery used a laser to correct our vision, specifically our myopia (nearsightedness) by permanently reshaping our corneas.  it was a bit uncomfortable but it was not painful at all.

our recovery process is well underway!  we had our surgery last thursday, so it's now just over a week that we have been healing.  we still have some minor limitations for a little while longer, but for the most part we are getting back to our normal lives and feeling a lot better.  we have some crazy eye shields to wear at night when we sleep to protect our eyes, super dark sunglasses for sunlight, and several different types of prescription eye drops to heal our eyes.

one thing that surprised me was that it was such an emotional experience.  i can't even describe what it feels like to wake up in the morning, open your eyes, and actually be able to see the alarm clock!  it is life changing to live free from the constraints of glasses and contacts.

we had a check-up with our doctor on wednesday and i'm thrilled to report that we are both reading better than 20/20 . . . amazing!  our vision will improve even more over the next few weeks.  overall, we are beyond elated with our "new eyes" (as my dad calls them) and we are looking forward to enjoying the benefits of our lasik for the rest of our lives!

ps: if you're curious what we did with all of our old stuff, we were able to donate our unused contacts, solution, cases, and old glasses.  that way someone else can use all of it instead of just throwing it away.  (we did decided to each keep 1 pair of glasses that were our favorites as mementos though.)

love, laurie

Thursday, November 2, 2017

worn out

i think all of the halloween excitement from earlier this week wore out my poor fluff baby!  he completely passed out on my lap the other night and this morning he didn't want to get out of bed.  the weather is overcast, rainy, and dreary, so i don't blame him.  i'm hoping to carve out a little free time tonight after dance class to sit down and cuddle him again!

love, laurie

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

halloween 2017

oh my goodness, last night was a great halloween!!!  i felt like a little kid all night. unfortunately, ryan had to work and miss trick-or-treat, but my dad came up to join me.  as soon as i got home from work, i got into costume as dorothy from the wizard of oz.  this costume was one that my great aunt hand made for me when i was somewhere in middle school.  it has always been one of my favorites.  i re-wore it one year in high school and was glad it still fit so that i could re-wear it again this year.  my mom found the stuffed dog to put in my basket as toto and boy was that a huge hit!  all of the kids kept asking if they could pet toto!  it was really cute.  two separate trick-or-treaters even took toto out of my basket and put him in their candy bags!  luckily i got him back each time.

my dad and i had dinner together (homemade enchiladas) and dessert (homemade chocolate cupcakes with vanilla buttercream topped with coconut) while we waited for the trick-or-treaters to arrive.  all together we had 147 trick-or-treaters come to our door.  (believe it or not, that's actually our lowest count in years!)

i was happy that several of my dance students who live near me came to my house to trick-or-treat.  it was cute to hear them yell "it's miss laurie!" when they realized it was me.  there were a lot of great costumes, but my favorite for the night was a giant inflatable t-rex costume.  it was pretty impressive!

here are some photos from our halloween last night . . .

^i kept my makeup simple to try to look younger and just added a few freckles on my cheeks with brown eye liner.^
^leko told me his costume was the lion from the wizard of oz.  however, he wanted to be clear that he wasn't the cowardly lion before visiting oz, he was the lion with courage after visiting oz because he is a very courageous kitten!^
^the courageous lion gave toto a very close inspection before halloween could commence!^
^i loved my dad's halloween snoopy sweatshirt!^
^as we were taking these picture outside before trick-or-treat started, i heard people yelling, "look, there's dorothy!" from down the street.  everyone really loved my costume!^
^leko was watching us through the front door as we were outside taking pictures and setting up the decorations, it was so cute!^
^our pumpkins that we carved and painted over the weekend all lit up before and after dark.^
^a small section of our light display.^
^waiting by the front door for the trick-or-treaters to arrive while clicking my heels like dorothy.^ 
^it was so nice to see several of my dance students come trick-or-treating at our house.  i only got a picture with one of them though.  she was dressed up as princess elsa from the disney movie frozen.^
^can you tell which is real and which is stuffed?  ha!  at the end of the night, leko was sitting with the stuffed animals looking out the door to see if there were any more trick-or-treaters coming!^

hope everyone had a happy halloween!
love, laurie
. . .

previous halloweens: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016