Attenion all passengers: United Airlines can kiss it!

Day two of the conference went just fine. I think we really got a lot out of it and hope that the new ideas and tools we introduce to the agency will be welcomed with open arms. And then I woke up!

The conference ended just shortly after 3 on Tuesday and Luke and I made a beeline to the airport. We checked in, made it to the gate in ample time. I enjoyed ice cream and surfed the free wi-fi (note to ALL airports- FREE Wi-Fi).

We boarded... late. While sitting in the plane and getting ready to take off, the captain announced "that there is a dent in the door and FAA will not let us take off until we have it checked out." Ok, no bigs, they'll take a looksie and we'll be on our way.

Whoa-ho-ho- I was wrong. Apparently, this is a serious situation. A situation that requires FORTY FIVE MINUTES of investigation and paperwork.

Luke and I sat back and began to laugh as we finally took off- because we only had 45 minutes of connection time in Denver to make our flight home to Wichita. I knew there was no way in hell we'd make that flight, always the pessimist; and he rested easy knowing we'd catch another one, possibly this one, always the optimist.

As we got closer to Denver the flight attendant announced that there were 15 of us that had to make a connecting flight in Denver. The airline was going to hold two of those flights until the passengers could get on board... ours was not one of them. She asked that all passengers stay seated once we arrived so that our 15 could get off the plane and make our flights.

Of course, the second the plane touched the jetway the whole plane stood up. Luke and I were seated in the absolute dead-last seats- meaning that even in normal situations it would be 10-15 minutes before we got off the plane.

We finally broke through. We checked the departure TV and our flight had already been removed. I laughed. We missed our flight home. That has never happened to me before.

We made our way to the counter and they already had boarding passes waiting for the next flight--- the flight that would leave at 10:15 the next morning. SUPER!!

We were provided with a voucher for a hotel room and a $4.00 voucher for breakfast- for the butter pat to go on our muffin. We passed on the breakfast.

By the time we made it to the hotel I hadn't eaten in almost 12 hours and it was nearly midnight. Then it dawned on me that for the first time in my life I didn't pack an extra change of clothes. Go figure. I washed my delicates in the sink in the bathroom and made due with what I had for the rest of my clothes.

Ultimately, we made it home safely- tired, dirty and cranky. Ok that was me, I don't know about Luke.

I haven't had a spare minute yet, but I'm gathering all my flight info so that I can place a calm and rationale phone call to United. I'll explain to them that it is trips like this, where every flight is screwed up, is the reason they are in bankruptcy. I'll also explain to them that they are going to provide me with no less than one free flight to anywhere I choose. I hope very soon to update you with the success of that conversation.


Soooooo past my bedtime

We got out of the longest day of my life at 4. i'm sorry- the conference. It's like being back in school. Lots and lots of notes. There was even a math segment- and I nearly had a panic attack.

Luke and I left there for a little R&R in our rooms. We met back up at 5 and did a little wandering throug NY, NY. We sat in the bar for a while and shared drinks, had a little convo. Then I decided it was my feeding time again.

We had an effing fantastic dinner at Emeril's in MGM. Really enjoyable. then we mosied on down to Bellagio, just in time to see the fountain show. So beautiful. I didn't care that it was cold out and I was being misted.

Inside I played 20 in the slots, left 20 up. I lost that 20 when we returned to Monte Carlo. I am even for the trip. Good for me.

We made it over to In N Out burger for lunch today. YUM! i've only had it one other time but it definitely stacked up to my memory.

Tomorrow morning I get to sleep in- 7am. A full day of conference and then off to the airport for our trip home. Hopefully much smoother than the arrival. Should be sleeping in my own bed by 1am tomorrow.


Just get us there already... so we can start partaking in the sinning

I've been in Vegas for about an hour. I should have arrived three hours ago. Crimeny! I'm here for a conference with the 4 A's (Association of American Advertising Agencies). AE Bootcamp- going to ship-shape my AE'ing capabilities. One other fella from my office is accompanying me, Luke. He is fantastic and going to be a great travel mate.

We left Wichita for Denver at 7pm. Arrived in Denver with 1/2 an hour before our connecting flight departed. Since I was conscious, I decided I needed to feed myself. With no time to spare I hit the Mickey D's. They didn't have Dr Pepper- and then I ordered the #2, since that is what I always order. That's the 2 cheeseburger meal. Well, In Denver, that would be the Q-pounder. GROSS! I panicked and had the girl change my order. Everything turned out ok.

Luke and I made it to our gate, good old Gate 42 in Denver. This is where we learned our flight would be delayed about half an hour because of equipment problems on the plane. No biggy, it happens. Now I don't have to inhale of artery clogging dinner.

Half an hour later- NO PLANE. Guess what, we discovered MORE problems while attempting to fix the first. We're going to try to fix this... wait another half an hour. So we wait. Bored to tears, we wait. Then they announce it's the alternator- YAY! They can't fix this and are now waiting for a new plane to land, unload and then load us. This gives us time to go to the bar and get a refreshment. Nastiest Killians I've ever drank.

While we're waiting this crotchety old man was going chair-by-chair passing out United Airlines complaint cards. You can count mine in, buddy! Strangely, I remained calm, cool and collected throughout this whole process. People, I'm maturing before my very own eyes. "You'll be a woman..... soooooon", sing it with me!

We get back to the gate- WAIT ANOTHER HALF HOUR!!! We're finally on the plane, get ready to lock down the doors when.... TWO MORE PEOPLE NEED TO GET ON. Are you kidding me?!

The second the wheels cleared the ground I passed out. While local time said it was only 10- my bio-clock said it was MUCH later. AND, I had already driven from OKC to Wichita this mroning.

We land in Vegas and we have to wait another HALF HOUR on the tarmac because the winds are blowing in from the NE which is so unusual and so it is causing congestion. GET TO THE GATE ALREADY!

Finally out, make it to the taxi area and like 500 jetlagged cows, we wait in yet another line to get a cab. We're staying at the new Monte Carlo and made it here in 6 minutes. Nice work cabbie!

My room looks out on the roller coaster at New York, New York. I have a crystal clear view of In-N-Out Burger and fully intend on eating there for lunch tomorrow. You're jealous right now, I know it.

We're finally here safely, and that is the important part. I'm looking forward to the conference- I hope I learn a few valuable things. For now, I couldn't be more tired. Local time is 12:30am- my clock says it is 2:30--- TIME FOR SLEEPY!!!


As if I needed more clues to my out-of-shapeness

Wednesday was the last day for one of my favorite co-workers. To celebrate her departure our office had a party at the skating rink in town. This turned out to be one of the most hilarious displays of human acrobatics I have ever had the pleasure of both watching and participating. I mean, what else do you expect from a group of 25 to 60-year olds who have not done this in at least a decade- myself included.

We were all brave souls. Each strapping on the skates and begging our legs and spines to remember how to do this. I got there and announced that skating has got to be like riding a bicycle- once you learn you never forget. Me and my big mouth. Every single one of us were the most awkward looking rubber-legged, monkey-arm flailing, little girl squealing group of too-old-to-be-doing this skaters ever.

I can proudly say I never fell. But I was never capable of stopping using the stoppers on the front of the skates. I ran into the brick wall and the concrete wall several times... scratch that- slammed.

My dearest husband apparently didn't know how to skate. I, of course, laughed when I learned this. But Shelton did a fantastic job. I wouldn't exactly call it graceful, but none of us were that night.

We did the limbo and I was the first one out. The music was blasting the tunes of the 70s and 80s.
All in all it was an awesome time. Too much fun. And my leg and hiney muscles are still in the re-coop stage.



I need to scream so loud and so long that I run out of air... this is a start.


A taste of my own medicine

Tonight for dinner I made roast with potatoes and green beans. It cooked all day long in the crock pot and when we got home the house smelled delicious. Shelton and I sat down, had dinner and talked about our day. This mundane activity is what we do every single night.

Shelton breezed through his dinner and I made my way in to seconds. Say it with me- fatty, fatty, fatty!

As I'm sitting there eating, Shelton begins clearing his dishes. Then he starts collecting all of the condiments. I felt so uncomfortable. Inside I was thinking, please just sit down and talk to me, even if you are finished eating.

Then, that little light inside my head went DING! I looked at Shelton and said, Is this what it feels like when I do this to you? And he said, Yes.

See, more nights than not I am the one who finishes eating first. And I immediately starting clearing the table, working around Shelton. Are you finished with this? Mind if I take this? And Shelton always asks me to just wait until he is finished.

Well, now I know how it feels and I will certainly try to make it stop.

As soon as dinner was over Shelton filled a bowl with ice cream. Now, I knew I had those little pre-made Toll House brownie batter square things in the fridge. And I knew that I was going to chop these up and mix them in with our vanilla ice cream- much like Marble Slab. Shelton did not know this. So while he hastily made his dessert, I just sat back and watched.

Later on I made myself the brownie wonder treat and Shelton VERY JEALOUSLY watched me eat it. Whimpering through my entire bowl. I felt no sympathy and told him he'd get his tomorrow.


There and back

I had to drive to OKC for a photo shoot for my client today. Necessary, yes? Insanely long and boring, yes. 370 miles I drove today... ALONE! Across empty field after empty field. For only 45 minutes of photo shooting.

My journey south was met with juicy angus meat and Skanche. I met Jeremy at Irma's Burger Shack for possibly the world's best hamburger. So good. Once again, we did not meet the advertised 1:25 burger time- one of these days. It's good to have goals.

After that I headed to Mustang for the shoot. The address says North Mustang Road. However, I was driving South on South Mustang Road. I ping-ponged back-and-forth between Mustang and Yukon for like 1/2 an hour before I finally called the branch and asked them to explain how the hell I was supposed to get there. Sure enough, just keep heading south on south and you'll arrive at north.

Only in Oklahoma, right?

Paul was captain photography today and I think the shots turned out really well. I hope everyone is pleased with them and we make our 5pm deadline tomorrow.



Major, late-breaking news. Which story do you want first?!?!

We'll start with the UNBELIEVABLE!!!
While we were moving out of our apartment in November I lost my favorite necklace. Shelton's mom gave it to me on my 21st birthday and I wore it for our wedding. It's a beautiful blue opal and diamond necklace, I wear it all the time. I had placed it on our mattress while I was packing the nightstands. Shelton came in and lifted the mattress up to move it out when I realized it was on there. We SCOURED the room. We looked in every shoe, laundry basket, box, sock- EVERYWHERE! No necklace. My little heart was broken.
Well..... this morning Shelton called me before work and told me to look on this hook in his closet, he'd found something. There it was hanging!!! He said he put on his shoe this morning and felt something inside. Reached in and that was it. He said he's worn those shoes several times since the move. WHERE DID IT COME FROM?!?!? I don't know, but I'm so glad to have it back.

Now for the FABULOUS!
I'm famous for making the worst cookies. I can cook meals all day long. But turn on that oven, and it is game over. So last night while watching the Sugar Bowl, total coincidence, I got the craving to make cookies. Shelton just shook his head, knowing full well they'd all end up in the trash because my cookies are always THAT BAD! Let me tell you, the most delicious, perfect cookies came out of my oven last night. I used the same recipe I always do. I did nothing different than I've ever done. I'm so proud of myself I want to shout it from the rooftop, but it's safer to shout it from here.

And finally, the AWESOME!!!
I have this little 9 year old girl that I "mentor". We have lunch at her school once a week and talk, play games and whatever else we feel like. She has quickly become the highlight of my week. She has so much spark and sass and energy, I just love being around her. Well today I asked that my "lunch buddy" status be upgraded. We'll now have a relationship like Big Bros/Big Sis- we'll get to spend time together on the weekends and evenings. This will allow me to be much more involved in her life and get to do many more things. I'm really looking forward to this.


"You're my boy Blue..."

Originally uploaded by oubrandi.
America's favorite fraternity brother has passed away. Patrick Cranshaw, who played "Blue" in "Old School", died this weekend of natural causes.

This is truly a loss. And all I want to do is put on some Kansas and sing "Dust in the wind".