Friday, March 30, 2007

Prayer Thanks

Wednesday March 28 (two days ago) I posted about needing prayers for the daughter of one of my staff members. Just wanted to take a moment to let everyone know that she was released from the hospital Thursday afternoon and is now home. Her mother called me this morning to let me know and to say that she needed to go back to the doctor today for one more shot and then she should be okay. They will still be monitoring her blood levels every Monday as they have been doing since last year. Hopefully she will be doing well after this episode.

She has actually been very lucky over the past year. Her surgery was in May last year and she has not had an rejection episodes. Although she has to be monitored for the rest of her life and has to take medication for the rest of her life, the first year is very crucial, and so far she has done great.

Thanks for keeping her in your prayers!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Spring showers and a Prayer Request

Yesterday was so gorgeous and then this morning I awoke to very load thunder, lightening, and a heavy downpour. It was very grey and dark all morning. But by late afternoon it warmed up again and the sun came out. Looks nice out now. It is a little cooler, so that's nice.

Last night we had our first real dance lesson. We're getting good at a box step. We can do the basic waltz and rumba steps and Chris can turn me through them too. We're both still a little awkward, but we were doing pretty good there for a while. We definitely need to practice. No lesson next week, but we'll be back the week after that.

Tonight I'm going to church for the Faith Formation Committee meeting. I forgot to print out the agenda and I forgot what we did at the last meeting. So I hope there wasn't something I was supposed to read or do before tonight. I guess I'll find out shortly. I enjoy this committee because I like the conversations and I like the things we talk about. We're focusing a lot on what is happening in the CCD, teen programs, RCIA, and adult education programs currently and full-time staff members are giving us reports on what they are doing. Secondly we are working on how to introduce Whole Parish Catechises into the church. This is a tough thing since the church is so large AND we are supposed to focus on how our parish, as the cathedral, is an example to all the other Catholic churches in the diocese. Not an easy thing to do. This is my second year on the committee, and as interesting as it is and all, I may request to rotate off after this year. Not sure just yet since the commitment isn't nearly as much as some of my other commitments. We'll see how I feel in a few months. If I continue it will be for only one more year though, I know that.

One other thing I wanted to mention. One of my staff members has a daughter who had a liver transplant almost one year ago (May 2006, I think). She was admitted to the hospital again this week with a low white cell blood count. which means that her immune system is basically not working. They are monitoring her and giving her medications to help stimulate that cell count back up. Please say a prayer for her that she will get better soon and be able to return home and to school and her normal routine. She's only 14 years old. Thanks!!

I have to run to get to my meeting on time. Good night!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Spring is here!! And it is HOT outside!

Spring is definitely here.

Several weeks ago, walking across campus there were not too many people out and about. Suddenly there are LOTS of people!!

I just walked from the main library to the credit union in the Student Center and there are so many people around! The sun is shining, people are playing Frisbee in whatever grassy spots they can find, music is blaring outside the classroom building, people are hanging on the walls outside the office tower, and people are laying in the grass catching a couple rays before their next class.

Almost everyone is now wearing shorts and flip-flops, girls are all wearing cap sleeve T's or sleeveless T's, and the warmth outside is so nice!! Spring is nice when it is like this; summer is what I don't care for too much, then it gets really hot!

But for now, there is a freshness in the air, everything seems more carefree, and the coldness is gone (even if perhaps temporarily). Hope you are also enjoying nice spring weather wherever you are!!

Monday, March 26, 2007

My Family Weekend

I just had a wonderful weekend visiting with some of my family. They arrived here on Thursday evening, we had dinner, and then I ran off to a rehearsal. But we did manage to visit some Thursday night when I got home and we stayed up late talking.

Friday we ran wedding errands. We met with the wedding coordinator and talked about the details of the day. We also met with the Invitation place and settled on everything there and placed the order. We then went home for a quick bite to eat and to let my niece take her nap then my mother and I ran over to meet with the cake person. We settled on the cake flavors and fillings and design. It's going to look great! And taste great, too!

The rest of Friday we relaxed, had dinner eventually, and then Chris and I had our third NFP class that evening. Saturday was a totally relaxing day! My mother, sister, and I spent the entire morning talking. It was around 1pm or so when we finally started getting ready for the day and taking showers! It's so much fun to talk though. So we finally stopped at Kohl's to do a little shopping and then went to a park and had fun pushing my niece on the swing and playing with her on the slide and teeter-totter. Chris cooked dinner Saturday night for all of us.

Sunday was just a relaxing day as well. My family left around 11am or so and then I just did a few things around the house, practiced some, and started working on my taxes (finally!).

It was so fun to spend a weekend with my family. I don't get to see them often so it's nice to just sit around and talk. And my niece is walking now, which she wasn't doing the last time I saw her. It's so funny to see how much personality she has. She's always had a lot, but it just keeps developing more. She's saying a few words now too. I wish I could see her more often.

Today I'm back at work, but today is a good day back after being gone for a week. I have a class in the Human Resource's Training Department all afternoon, so I'm only in my office this morning. By tomorrow I'll definitely be fully back in the swing of things!

Have a great week!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Cleaning Day

I spent a good portion of today cleaning my house. I love it when it is clean and less cluttered!! I love it so much I don't understand why I can't keep it this way. Of course, I have guests coming this weekend, so I was pressed for time. Therefore, I took a few shortcuts, but by and large the house really is clean for once. On the other hand, why was I pressed for time?? I've been off from work all week!!

It must be procrastination. I'm good at that.

This afternoon as I was vacuuming, dusting, and cleaning the bathrooms I was thinking about when Chris and I are married. We've talked a little bit about how we'll divide household responsibilities, but I think there are still plenty of things out there that we haven't brought up yet. He knows I tend to accumulate clutter, and I know that he doesn't like clutter. We also know that he'll be responsible for outside work. As I told him: that's why I bought a house that required no outdoor work.

He loves to cook and because of that I will gladly do dishes. Not only that, but I really do not enjoy cooking. I can do it, but I take no pleasure in it like he does. So that leaves all the other stuff: vacuuming, dusting, bathrooms, floors, laundry (no wait, I did say I would do that), shopping, and who knows what else. Then everything increases when kids come along.

I think we may need a schedule in our house or nothing will ever get done. :) Okay, time for me to go start dinner. Have a wonderful evening!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Lent: The One Month Mark

One month ago today was the beginning of Lent. We have about 2 and a half weeks before we celebrate the Resurrection with Easter Sunday!! So, how have you been doing on your Lenten journey?

I have done okay, but not great. I fasted on Ash Wednesday, and have mostly remained meatless on Fridays. I forgot the Friday I was in Pittsburgh and had meat for both breakfast and lunch that day (I remembered in time for dinner). I also have held to my Lenten promise of no TV; only when I was in the airport did I see any, but that was just news anyway. As for the daily Rosary, I started out okay, but have usually missed a day or two each week since. Chris and I do better with this when we see each other and can do it together than when we are left to our own devises. We're working on it though and hope to continue beyond Lent.

So, how is everyone else doing with your Lenten promises? Share your stories in the comment box if you like.

Quick Mid-week update

I have a short amount of time to do this in.

We had a little St. Patty's Day gathering on Saturday evening. 9 adults and 6 little boys all under the age of 4! It was fun! We had an Irish Stew and my grandmother's Irish Soda Bread, plus a salad and two different desserts. I think everyone enjoyed themselves and it was fun to actually be a host for once.

Sunday I don't even remember. It must have been a quiet day.

This week I am on vacation from work, but still very busy. I have been making wedding phone calls and organizing things and eventually will clean my house. I hate cleaning, but it has to be done. And, wow!! There is a lot to clean in my house!! Ever wonder why I never invite anyone over??

Last week I found out about a software company that is coming to do a presentation at work on a new product and what they have done with our data in the product. As the chair of the UK Libraries Integrated Library Systems Committee, I was asked to attend. I found out that the presentation was today! But I am here and the presentation is in a few minutes. I figure that I will take two hours off sometime next week to make up for coming in during my vacation. Not only as the ILS chair, but as the music cataloger, I feel like I need to be here to ask the tough questions that only music people can ask because our data is so much more complex than data for other matierals. And we need to ask the tough questions if we are going to invest in a third-party software.

That's about it from me at this time. Hope everyone is having a goood week! Have to run!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Your Irish Name Is...
Avril O'Farrell

Well, I already have an Irish name, but I guess this one will work too. Avril is kind of a neat name. Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Fish Fry Friday

I am now on vacation for a week!!

This week at work was great! No students around because it is spring break. It's quiet on campus, almost a little eerie. But the best part is not getting run over by students on cell phones when you try to walk across campus. Oh, and parking is great!! I can actually get to work at 9pm or later and still get a great spot. But that's over now. My parking permit goes back to being a hunting pass.

But I have another week before I have to deal with it. I decided to take a week of vacation, but not go anywhere! I'm looking forward to being able to catch up with things at home, do wedding stuff, and run errands when most people are at work. My mother, sister, and neice are coming to visit at the end of the week, too.

Tonight we had the Fish Fry at Church. We got there when it opened at 5pm and had dinner together. Then we took a short walk around the block the church is on before our meeting with Father Frank at 6pm. We had met with Father Paul about wedding stuff previously, but now that Father Frank is doing the wedding we needed to review everything. He also already knows us and we just reviewed what was required and we brought him up to speed on what we had already done so far. It was a nice meeting. He gave us the (157 question) survey that we need to individually (no cheating) fill out and return to him. Plus we had to sign an affadavit about being Catholic and raising our kids Catholic, etc. And we have a form for a witness to fill out, someone who has known us a very long time, that basically says that we are entering into this marriage of our own free will, etc., etc. We figure the matron-of-honor and the best man can each fill it out for us. Of course, we also got onto other topics with Father, such as YAACK and how things are going with that; he gave us other book suggestions and he was thrilled with the book we had chosen already, which he loved, had written a book review for in the past, and said he would love to read it again.

Actually, Father Paul called me at work today to inquire about YAACK's new format and to confirm another event with me. He also wants a copy of our chosen book and is thinking of trying to come to the first of our book discussions.

That was basically our evening. Tomorrow is St. Patrick's Day!! Wear your green!!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Dancing and Books!!

Dancing and Books?? Well, not together. Tuesday we went dancing. We had a free dance lesson at the Arthur Murray studio here in Lexington. It was fun!! We signed up for 20 more lessons for between now and the wedding. We spent a half hour with a private instructor who showed us basic steps that could be used for various dances. Overall she showed us basic steps and timings to the Foxtrot, Waltz, Rumba, and Swing. I really had a good time.

The lessons are a little expensive, but as students at the studio we can also participate in any of their Newcomer classes and their Friday dances. We figured that we get twice for our money if we go to at least one Newcomer class for each private lesson, plus the occasional Friday dance party.

Where do books fit in to this? Well, they don't ... exactly. Read on ...

Wednesday night we had our Young Adult meeting at church and we introduced a new format. This group has traditionally met every week and our numbers are so small that it was getting very difficult to do that. So, we changed the format. Now we'll be meeting twice a month. We decided that we'll be using one Wednesday to read and discuss a book and the other Wednesday to just have a social. Tonight we just had our organizational meeting. I had copies of the first book we're going to delve into as well as a list with descriptions of other books that I thought we could try. We had 11 people there tonight!! That's a good turnout for us. And, everyone there was excited about reading the books I have picked out. Our first book is Letters to Young Catholic by George Weigel. After tonight's meeting I feel more energized about YAACK than I have in a long time.

If anyone out there has book suggestions, let me know, leave a comment below. We are focusing on Catholic-based books, nonfiction and some fiction. I'm trying to get a variety of books, and nothing too heavily theological. I want things that will be educational and intellectually-stimulating, but not something that is going to be over our heads. I want to add some fiction in there as well to keep things interesting. I also think the occasional movie based on a book we've read or something Christian/Catholic related would be fun to liven things up. Anyway, I am open to suggestions, so please let me know if you've read something that we can add to our list.

That's it from here!! Two days more of work before the weekend!! I hope everyone has their St. Patrick's Day plans for Saturday!!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Finally Gettin' Movin'

I'm finally getting some exercise. I think I mentioned that we went for a long walk on Sunday afternoon. Monday night I went to the Recreation Facility at a nearby Baptist church which has an indoor track that people can use for $15 a year. I did 51 laps last night, which equals 3 miles. And it was a pretty good pace too, I did 3 miles in an hour.

Tonight we have dancing lessons!! Hopefully the first of several!

Good night and blessing to all!!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Weekend Activities

We had a busy and fun weekend this weekend!! Didn't really get anything done around the house (except make the bed in the guest room for a friend who's staying over one night later this week), but sometimes it's good to just have a fun weekend.

Friday Chris and I tried two new things. First we went to a Vietnamese restaurant in town called Fusion Cafe. I made the incorrect assumption that like other far Eastern foods, they would have plenty of non-meat dishes to choose from. Not so, but we did find some shrimp dishes that were okay. We think we'll go back another time to try the meat dishes and the Pho. That seemed to be the popular thing to get, but all the Pho came with meat of some kind or another. Pho, apparently, is some kind of noodle soup. Maybe my old friend Tuan (Hi Tuan!! Hope you're still reading!) can give me some suggestions for the next time I try Vietnamese food.

After dinner we went downtown to an art gallery that I have been to many times. In the past I've been there during Lexington's Gallery Hop and occasionally for chamber music concerts that friends have performed in there. Besides are and music, they also do contra dancing!! I've actually wanted to go for years, but could never get up the nerve. So Chris and I went and had a blast. It was quite a bit of exercise, very evergetic, and lots of fun. There were probably around 75 people there and everyone was extremely friendly. If you don't know what you're doing people will point you in the right direction and I was often pushed into or suddenly swung into the right spot on numerous occasions. I'd defintely go back.

Saturday was basically a quiet day. That evening we joined a group of people from various area churches for dinner followed by bowling. We had about 12 or so people for dinner and then 7 of us went bowling. I only got a 69 in the first game, but improved and got a 98 in the second game. Chris did very well with a 118 in the first game and then got his highest score ever in the second game with a 150!!

Today was fairly relaxing: church, breakfast at Chris' house, reading the Sunday newspaper together, went for an hour-long walk in the Arboretum, and then a quick stop at the grocery before coming home for the night.

I have to be at Church for Adoration at 5:30am tomorrow (next week I can go back to 6am), so I need to head to bed very soon. Monday after work I'm planning a walk at the indoor track that I paid a year-long fee to and haven't been yet, then home for dinner and maybe some clarinet practice. Tuesday night we're going to our first dancing lessons (not contra dancing this time). Anyway, it's going to be another busy week.

I hope everyone had a great weekend!! Have a blessed, productive, and fun-filled week!!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Progress being made

Thursday is almost over and I am slowly making some progress on work this week. It's always hard to get back into the swing of things after being away for so long. Mostly I've been doing conference wrap-up stuff since I've been back in the office, but by tomorrow I hope to be back typing agendas and minutes for meetings, making budget requests for next year, doing committee work, and, oh yeah!, CATALOGING music materials. I love it when I can actually do the work I love the most, which seems to happen more and more infrequently these days.

Yesterday the photographer called and our engagement photos were in and ready for pick-up. I went right over after work (they look great!) and then took them to Chris' house. He has them now, but by doing that I got to see him again and he made dinner for me! :) That also meant that I got home late and didn't do any of the other things I wanted to do last night.

Tonight I have rehearsal. Our next concert is in May in the Opera House, which I always enjoy. I missed the first rehearsal of this cycle since I was in Pittsburgh, so I get to play the music tonight for the first time.

I'm also checking references on two wedding coordinators. I've met both and now I'm waiting to see what the refs say. Once that's done I can make a decision and then let that person handle all the last minute wedding details when the time comes! Yeah!!

Hope everyone has a nice night and a fun weekend! We have lots of stuff planned, but more on that later ...

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Pittsburgh and Back

I am finally home!! It was a very long and busy week. But it was great to see my music librarian colleagues and reconnect with old friends!! Jennifer and I got caught up and the first thing she wanted to see was the ring! Bruce and I spent a lot of time together exchanging news, comparing our different work places, and getting into philosophical discussions. Marlene and I managed to grab breakfast together one morning and exchanged news about all the people we know in common. And I got to meet Tim's wife and their new puppy! Plus slowly word spread about my news and I had all sorts of people congratulating me and wanting to know about Chris. Socially, I had a great time. Especially going out to eat with a variety of people.

I was sick before leaving for Pittsburgh, which made the plane ride pretty terrible. The delays in Detroit did not help things at all. If it wasn't a February conference in Pittsburgh I would have considered driving (Pitt is about 6 hours from here), but I figured I'd be safer taking a plane. I was, but four gate changes later I was wishing I had driven. We finally left Detroit after midnight Monday night and I checked into the hotel around 2:30am Tuesday morning. Luckily the meeting we had planned on having at 8:30 was moved to 9:30am, so I was able to grab a little bit of sleep before having to be anywhere.

The MOUG meeting was really great. Lots of good information and discussion. I still haven't filled out my evaluation form (sorry Bruce) but it really was one of the best programs we've had. I think since we were only 2 hours from Columbus, OH we could bring more OCLC people in to give presentations, and it made a world of difference.

The MLA meeting was also good. I was busy going to several business meetings, but I actually came away with quite a bit of information this time. I am going to be sharing much of that information with my UK collegaues at a meeting tomorrow morning. I figure it was time to discuss some cataloging things at our CTS meetings since we usually only discuss special projects, acquisitions issues, and anything electronic.

The best time I had was meals out. Wednesday after MOUG I took a walk with three other people through downtown Pittsburgh all the way to an area called the strip. We had lunch there at a place known for their fish sandwiches, which were HUGE!!! We must have walked two miles to get there and two miles back. I was with three other music catalog librarians from Washington Univ. in St. Louis, the University of Maryland, and the Carnegie Library in Pittsburgh.

Wednesday night the MOUG Board (on which I am a member) went out to dinner together, as is the tradition. We found a Greek restaurant that was great. The food was spectacular and the atmosphere was very European. I love restaurants like that! They let you sit and talk and they aren't eager for you to leave so they can seat more customers. If you are ever in Pittsburgh I highly recommend it: Christos on 6th Ave. (or 6th Street, maybe?), it's downtown in the Cultural District. The waiter (who I think was also the owner) convinced us to try his Onassis dessert. He said he used to cook on the Onassis yacht and Jackie Onassis didn't care for desserts, so they were always trying to find something she would like, and this was it. It was a cake that was very light, white and had honey in it, and the frosting was also very light with a sprinkling of cinnamon on top. We ordered one and all seven of us tried a little. It was great!

Friday night we went across the river to Station Square and had dinner at an Italian place. It was very cute and everything there is family style, thus big portions. There were 6 of us, five catalogers and one reference/public services librarian. He was a little out of his element being surrounded by catalogers but later I found out that he had a really great time and was even contemplating switching to being a cataloger. He said we have more fun than the public services people. They were all from: Julliard School of Music, NYU, Baylor Univ., and two people from Roosevelt Univ. (Chicago). We were laughing so hard, I'm sure we were the loudest people in the place. And there wasn't that much alcohol at the table. I can't remember the last time I laughed that hard. I had no idea cataloging jokes could be so funny!! 520: that about sums it up!! [Guess you kind of had to be there!] The food was great, we order one salad and one appetizer to share between us and three entrees and three (very large!) desserts. I have never seen achocolate cake that big!!

Saturday night was also great. We always have a small cocktail reception before the banquet. This year's meeting was a joint conference with MLA and SAM (the Society for American Music). SAM has a brass band that plays to help close their conferences. So the brass band played for the first 30 minutes of the cocktail reception. There was also free champagne being passed out, so I had a glass of that. The brass band was okay, not very exciting music, just marches and some band type pieces. But then the MLA Big Band played! We have an awesome group. They played for the last hour of the reception before the banquet started and as soon as they started playing we were all cheering and going wild. They were great!! Definitely better than the brass band. One of my co-workers told me that someone standing next to her asked who these people were and she looked at them and just said, "They are Librarians!" How awesome!!! Check out our Big Band at: (I hope I have that correct, that's off the top of my head.)

I got back to town late Sunday night, went to see Chris and then finally made it back to my house in time to go to bed. I took Monday off to run errands and sleep in some. Went back to work today. Back to my mundane life. I love these conferences, I learn so much and I have so many friends there now, it's just fun to go. I can't wait to go to Newport, RI next year for our 2008 meeting. True Newport in February will be cold, but it'll be warm and cozy inside the hotel surrounded by lots of friends and good conversation!!