Live in a city, see crazy stuff: Caged children

So remember that time I saw that one-legged rooster and I told you all I'd share more crazy stuff when I see it?

I saw it.

I was driving down some street the other day, probably a busy one, and I was at a red light, oh so patiently waiting for it to turn to freedooommm (re: green). So I took in the scenery, city-style. No trees. No ocean. No fields of dreams.

Just some caged children.


Something like that. Minus the grass. And the gun. And the sweet shades. Mentally add in a brick building with a walkway separated from the sidewalk by floor-to-ceiling rusting metal bars.

And where you see that one kid in the playpen, throw in a good twenty more.

Then pretend they're smiling. Waving. Laughing. Enjoying life. In their happy little "pre-school" of sorts.

I'll tell you this much, should I ever have a child in this great city of Chicago, I won't be sending her (right, her. No baby Bruce Axel will be exiting this body) there. I don't care how happy they are.

*Bt-dub, so you know that I think of you outside this odd bloggy-world, I want to tell you that I thought about taking a picture of these sad caged children who were not sad at all, but the law-abiding educator in me just couldn't be okay posting a picture of children on the internet without parental consent. I know, lame. But at least I've communicated the mental image to you, no? It's probably better in your noggin anyways.

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Happy start of summer!

Happy Memorial Day, my friends!

I sincerely hope you're out there bbqing, lounging, soaking up the sun, all in my honor. I will be tutoring (finals this week! Eeek! Wish us luck!) and doing work for my last day of classes. So enjoy that bbq and lemonade. And think of me.

Hearts and corn on the cob, loves.

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Water for elephants.

I have this terrible habit of thinking for a long time that I want to see any given movie in the theatre. Then by the time I finally get it together enough to go see it, it's already gone to movie know, that place where movies wait to return to earth as DVDs.

Such was the case with "Water for Elephants" which I'd been honestly dying to see since my mom told me it was a movie. (I need to start watching TV. I never know what movies are out.) And in typical Emily "I'll see it next week" habit, I almost missed it.

Almost. But not quite.

Adrian and I managed to catch it last night. The last night it was in theaters round these parts. And we caught the last show.

On the car ride there, Adrian asked the all important question: Is this a love movie? You know I don't like love movies.

Yes. It's a love movie. Set in a depression-era circus.

Which got me thinking. And probably every other recent bride/ soon-to-be-bride.

This would make such a good wedding.

Minus the "depression", of course.

Then I found this:

Which means someone else already thought about it.

Which means my work here is done.

Sometimes when we're in public, Adrian forgets we're not at home. He made some loud comments during the movie. The four other people in the theatre appreciated his running commentary. I know it.

He finished off the movie by warning Reese, "Careful. That guy's a vampire."

Who says he doesn't like a love movie?

A touch of orange and a splash of joy.

I thought I'd drop you all a line so we can chat for a moment about my current favorite color combination. It's so much my favorite right now that I think if I were re-wedd-ing, I would use this lovely little palette.

Ok so maybe not quite that bright, but something similar.

And here's the best part of all this: we've already got the light blue walls! Woot woot! Now all we have to do is incorporate some joyful little touches of orange.

Ohhhh annnnnnnd, can I tell you something else??

There are some changes in the works over at Adrian's job. Changes that involve Adrian being home at normal hours. And us spending more time together. Annnnd us doing normal people things, like going to a carnival or going to the movies or going to birthday parties orrrr redecorating the apartment.

So cross your fingers ladies.

A touch of orange would be just right, no?

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Slice of life: Adrian's corner

Please watch before continuing. You will thank me:

Bearing this video in mind:

Adrian and I took a little drive this morning. He's got a long history of talking incessantly while in the car. I generally just nod and go along with whatever he says. Ohhh but today, he had something good for me.

Today, he went on a little tirade about video games. He doesn't play much and doesn't think others should either. He went on about how, when he has kids, he won't let them play video games often. If they want to play football, they can go outside and play instead of pretending to play football with a remote. And if they wanna shoot people, well, he'll just take them down to the local paintball facility and let them go wild.

He concluded this rant on the downfalls of American society by saying, "And that's how Adrian sees it," complete with the "C" hand gesture.

I doubled over, as much as you can in a moving vehicle.

To which he replied, "I'm a real Glee fan now, huh?"

Oh, that guy. His comedic versatility is truly incredible.

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Baby names. Dad*, don't panic.

I love kids...for the most part. Except the ones who have been screwed up by their parents. I kid I kid! Kind of. I studied elementary education because at the time I thought I wanted to be surrounded by kids all day.

After a couple years in Early Childhood Education, I think I do still like kids. I think I'd just prefer my own (no offense, loving parents in our program!). And Adrian adores kids. And one day, in a few years, we'll have some of our own. Preferably three little girls. Adrian says for every girl, there has to be a boy to protect her. But I think her daddy will inspire enough fear on his own.

So why am I telling you this? Because the Great Name Debate has begun. See, my name is Emily. My parents thought it was a nice name. So did every other mother in 1984 and the 20 years that followed. I am determined to not give my child a name that, when called, causes mass chaos due to everyone having the same name.

Oh, and I'm white and a touch Mexican-American. And Adrian's Mexican-Mexican. Which means we have to find a name that sounds good in English and Spanish.

Thus began the Great Debate. Mostly we're just joking, but the more we joke, the more I'm convinced it really could take us the few years we plan to wait to actually agree on something.

Take for example the name Quinn. Cute name. In Spanish though? Pronounced like "Queen." I would like if my daughter was not subjected to "Fat-bottomed girls" or "Bohemian Rhapsody", etc, everytime she walks down the hall at school. And yes, people who speak Spanish do indeed know and sing those songs. (One day, I'll sneak you all a video of Adrian's renditions. Classics, I tell you.)

Or how about Adrian's current favorite name: Bruce Axel. Yeah, Bruce Axel. Go ahead, I'll give you a few minutes to laugh that one out.


Still got a giggle in ya, eh?

Mmmkay. I told him absolutely nothing that comes from my body will never ever be named Bruce Axel. That's just ridiculous.

Now I, on the other hand, would like something a little more like Rupert. Or Henry. Or Harry. Or Harold. Or Albert. A name fit for an old man. Or a sleeping baby. Yes, Rupert would be just fine. He says those names are for grandpas. Better a grandpa than a steroid-popping meat-loving beer-belly-toting manly-man, I always say.

Good thing we have a couple years, eh?

* Paul, I hope you appreciate that I included you in this post. Maybe now you'll quit belly-aching.

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The Circus post to end all Circus posts

So I was thinking maybe I should continue telling you about that party, eh? I got busy with making invitations for other parties and forgot about the party gone by. Sorry about that.

So remember that Circus party? I have to be honest with you, ladies. It all looked much better in my head. I keep reminding myself that in the end everyone had a great time and my husband loved it. And that's what matters. Unless you're me. And you wanted everything to be perfect. You win some, you lose a bunch.

Anyways, I had made these cup labels (I know, seriously, who does that?) and I can say that I did like how they looked. Too bad we had soda and beer in cans and bottles. Shoulda thought that one out a bit better, eh genius?

See they had this line, where you write your name or your buddy's name or the name of someone you don't know but would like to know, and thus assign yourself or that cutie by the photobooth a role in the circus. Again, genius idea. Poor execution. Next time, nix the bottled and canned beverages.

Second fail: Awesome idea to have a tent, consequently left over from last year's wedding. (And will be recycled again for "Camping in the Canopy: A night of projected movies in my canopy in my city backyard." Details to follow when the weather decides to cooperate!)

Great for keeping out wind and adding to the circus-y ambiance. Downside? Lots of empty white walls. Booo. Luckily the wind died down and we rolled one of those long sides up and that lowered the hospital factor and made the tent feel ten times bigger.

Other minimal failure: I should have either included a bunch more streamers. Or secured them at the bottom for nice and tidy stripes.

One last thing, I wish I had grouped balloons together in like two ginormous bunches instead of trying to spread the balloon wealth. Something like this:

Maybe not quite that wild. But you get the idea.

Now that those are out of the way, let's talk about what I liked.

I adored my signage. And with good reason. I put a lot of time into those! So enjoy!
(Bt-dub: I found the orange background for the bottom three here).

I also enjoyed my choice of mustaches. I had to get in one good party with mustaches before it became so 2010-2011. Plus they were 25 cents and self-adhesive. I stuck mine to a pole for safe-keeping, but like all great things left outside, it disappeared. No worries, I treated myself to another.

Let's talk about these little lovelies. My old roomie provided the cake and the cupcakes...and did an awesome job to boot! They were well-received and made their way home...on plates, in hands, you know anyway people could take 'em. The toppers I made courtesy of my cricut and an awesome circus cartridge. I loved loved loved those little guys. Especially the bear in a tutu. So classic.
The master baker and her master baked good

Jenny, incredibly graciously, offered to bake the cake, probably knowing that I'd come out with something much less like a circus tent, or more like a circus pie, if you know what i'm saying. Watch where you're stepping. This little gem of a cake was all her doing, from idea to successful execution. Thanks, Jenny!

Each table had an aqua table cover and a red and white striped runner. For like two months prior to this party, I had looked high and low for red and white striped wrapping paper. I finally gave in and bought cheap fabric and asked a good friend to sew it for me. You know, cause I sew just like I bake. Not well. Anyways, two days before the party Party City decided to roll out the striped wrapping party. Thanks PC, you're just two months too late.

So there you have it, my friends. Only thing I didn't snag a picture of was the Carnival games! I picked up a carnival games disc for the wii and we brought the tv outside for people to play during the party. Which was awesome.

Hope you enjoyed it via blog as much as we enjoyed it in real life!

A clean house.

Source: via Kelli on Pinterest

And a wasted Saturday afternoon.

Motivation is lacking. I think I can. I think I can.

Here I go, ladies! Hope your Saturday is a bit more fun. But just a bit. You know, so I don't get jealous.

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Official start of summer. in May.

You know, I really wanted to say hi to you all yesterday. And blogger said no. So I couldn't. But I'm here today, ready to try again.

There's something you should know about me.

I absolutely love dunkin donuts iced coffee.

Seriously, love it. According to the Midwest, it's a sign of my New England heritage. Thank God Chicago recognizes the beauty of the medium Coconut iced coffee with extra skim milk and two splendas. I've got two Dunkin' Donuts three minutes to the West. And one three blocks from work. Woooooot. (And for the record, Starbucks was here. Til it went out of business. Fist pump. Bring on the dunkin!)

Nothing signals the start of summer more than a good, no, a great iced coffee. Roll down the windows. (If you can. Mine won't...gotta get that checked out asap.) Rock out to whatever puts you in a good mood, which currently for me is "Jesse's Girl". And enjoy that iced coffee. Cause it's summer. And life is splendid. Even when it's only May. Whatevs. It's 90 degrees. That's summer.

Back in the day when my husband was just my boyfriend and even before that when he was just my buddy, he didn't understand why summers found me with the windows down and iced coffee in hand. And slowly, with time, he came around. Then I married him. Not because he found out that DD is the greatest thing ever and would show up at my house with aforementioned coffee in tow....

Just kidding. I married him for his fauxhawk.

Anyways, I just thought you should know what kind I like. Just in case you're on my block. Or outside my work. Or waiting by my car. You, little stalker. J.k. I love seeing you around.

(Bt-dub, I tried to fill this here post with iced coffee pictures, you know to match, but the donut pictures were just too pretty. Pretty, pretty. And a donut truck?? That's just magic.)

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oh hello, reading. I love you.

I love to read. Seriously love to read. And since I work for a non-profit that promotes family literacy, I'm well aware that absolutely everyone is born with the innate love of reading, but it's the job of the parents to foster and grow that love of reading into a full blown obsession.

So thanks Mom.

See, my mom started us early. She read to us a lot. We had bunches and bunches of books hanging around. All those classics. Where the Wild Things Are, One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, Corduroy...all the greats. And she took us to the library for story hour.

But my mom didn't just stop with Dr. Seuss. She pushed us a bit further. In fact, when I was like seven years old, she read us To Kill A Mockingbird. Yeah. At age seven.

"Heavy topic for a seven year old, don't you think?"

Yeah. I don't think I caught too much of it except the part where Scout runs around in a ham costume.

Regardless, my mom is an animal for reading to us all the time. For taking us to that crazy story hour. For rereading all the classics because once, twice and 100 times just isn't enough.

Now, if only they had written this book 23 years ago....

Happy Mother's Day, Lydiebell!

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Slice of life: my husband and Glee.

I was thinking yesterday that I ought to share with you all those little moments that make life lovely.

Then I was thinking I should start that today.

And then such a great little moment happened.

Adrian and I had decided that last night was a Margarita and guacamole kinda night. So I got ready with a little Glee on the ipod.

Before I go any further, I do want to say that my husband is oh-so-manly. He loves a good skull on any article of clothing. He rocks a faux-hawk. He loves all those actiony movies that I hate. And he generally listens to terrible music, like rock music that's too loud.

So there I am belting out some Glee, Don't stop believing. And he comes to the door and starts dancing and belting along with me.

Source: via Pähkinä on Pinterest

And it was perfect.

Then we went out for margaritas and guacamole. And it was perfect.

Then we came home and he insisted on watching the rest of season one of Glee on netflix. And that was the ultimate perfect.

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Just a quick hey all

So I'm in the midst of project weekend, but I wanted to drop in with a quick hello and a story of the disturbing variety.

Now, if you'll kindly recall, my mother has a deep appreciation for all things Jersey Shore. (Don't remember that?? Read up here).

So anyways, I'm facebook chatting with my mom, right? (I know, this ought to be addressed in some family counseling or something). And I made some comment and she counter-commented with a quote from jersey shore. To which I replied,


cause let's be honest, i don't really watch tv. Unless it's on netflix. And it's glee. Or lie to me.

So she says, "jersey shore." Like that's it. Like I should have known.

So then I, obviously, change my facebook status to the following: Ok so im facebook chatting with my mom and she quotes jersey shore. this is just too much.

And she comments on my facebook status.

"It's t-shirt timmmmmmmmmmmmme."

Honestly, whoever said facebook would improve our quality of life is probably one of the idiots who also created Jersey Shore. So thanks. I hope what you like what you've done to my mother.

Source: None via Veronica on Pinterest

Oh and for the record, she ended our chat with a "Peace out."

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A word from that one guy about his birthday.

I've got a lot of projects going on right now. I kinda feel like Max in Where the Wild Things Are. My projects will eat me up, they love me so.

(Side note: Adrian likes to call this book "Where the Things Going Wild" which makes me think of a certain inappropriate series where women flash their goods....which is not a children's book, at all. I ought to correct him, but then he goes and says, "What the heck I am talking about?" And then how can I?)

So when I think about telling you about that lovely party we had, I think about my other projects and how they roar their terrible roars and gnash their terrible teeth and I go back to them. You know, so they don't eat me up.

So with my wild projects ready to pounce at any moment, let me let you meet the guest of honor, who will tell you in his own words about the party:

(Before Adrian comes, let me say this: the party looked better in my head. That said, my husband loved it, which I guess is what really matters. Right? Oh please say right.)

Hi. This is Adrian and I'm gonna talk a little bit about my best birthday party ever. Well, probably many of you will think this party was awesome and nice and, you know, it was. Also many of you don't know Mexicans. Like true Mexicans. And I'm gonna to tell you a little bit about Mexican birthday parties.

First, you invite tons of people. You buy tons of food and toooooooons of alcohol. The party starts and people eat. By the middle of the party, on one side all the women are talking and the other side, there's a bunch of guys drinking by the cooler, talking about their jobs and how nice their cars look. And of course, don't forget about kids running all over the place. That's why I think the party my wife threw me last Saturday was not only awesome and nice. It was the shit. Everybody enjoyed it. Everybody hung out with everyone, men and women together. No kids running all over the place. No drunk guys drinking by the cooler. And the best part was that the Mexicans enjoyed it even though it was so different and new.

This party had a Circus theme and had decorations all over. There were Circus snacks and hamburgers and hot dogs. We brought out our wii which had Carnival Games to play. My wife had prizes for the carnival games. And she set up a photobooth with big sunglasses, mustaches, noses and funny faces. This party was completely different than the parties that Mexicans have in this neighborhood.

She encouraged all the Mexicans to take pictures in the photobooth. That's the first time ever in the history of the United States that at a Mexican party with Mexicans from Mexico, people were in a funny photobooth. And the Mexicans enjoyed it! If you don't believe, just check out my brother and sister's pictures here.

Another thing that is really important is to give a big thank you to my friend Jenny for the cupcakes and the cake that she made for my party because the cupcakes were something new too, for a Mexican party. And they were delicious. 

And I'm just gonna say thanks to my lovely and awesome and pretty and genius etc etc wife and to our friends Jenny, Ben and Emily for the party that they made for me. 

So there you have it. Straight from the Oso's mouth. 

And I hear what you're all thinking. You wish I'd have projects more often so you could hear more from Adrian. Unfortunately he's all tied up making shooting noises on his Droid. The man's got priorities.

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