Category Archives: Uncategorized

Prairie Home Fair, 2011

So it’s early July again here in Prairie Home, and that means it’s time for the annual Prairie Home fair.  At this time last year, we had just barely moved in and were still definitely getting settled when the fair came around.  Quite honestly, we were a little bit confused as to why a whole bunch of people and animals would make their way out to Prairie Home, when there are so many larger communities around.  Apparently, it’s been an annual event since something like 1915 though, so there’s definitely something to be said for tradition.  It began this past Wednesday night and ran through late Saturday evening.

It’s really a combination of a small fair (animals, food, and other events) and a small carnival.  This year they had a ferris wheel, a ride I used to call the ‘egg-turner’ back at the Tremont Turkey Festival (kind of like a ferris wheel, but instead of seats, there’s cages which spin upside down) and a ride that looks like a huge couch at the end of a long arm that basically swings around in a huge circle, dropping you almost straight down.  Besides this, they had the kiddie roller coaster, some take on the Berry-Go-Round, the motorcycle ride I loved when I was little, etc, and a bunch of games as well.  All in all, a nice little setup.  There’s also a small grandstand with an arena, in which there are different activities every night.  The first night was the tractor pull (we ARE in the country, after all).  We didn’t go up to see it, but it had to have been better than last year’s, which took place in about 4 inches of mud because it had rained all day.

Jessi and I signed up to work at the main (non-carnival) food stand.  We didn’t know it at the time, but this big stand, which uses all-volunteer labor, is basically the only reason that the Prairie Home fair is the only non-admission-charging fair in Missouri.  They make just enough money there to rent the grounds, make it so that people entering animals/etc into competition don’t have to pay anything, and make sure that admission is free.  We weren’t cooking (the guys in the back did an awesome job of turning out burgers, hot dogs, chili dogs, nachos, BBQ pork sandwiches, etc at an amazing rate), but we sold the stuff from 8-10 pm.  It was actually about 11:30 by the time we got out of there, and they were still going, but some of the other workers were nice enough to let us go home.  The event for the night was a horse show (barrel-racing and a whole bunch of other stuff I have no idea what it was because I don’t know squat about horses).  The barrel-racing was really pretty cool to watch though, and we had a ton of fun selling food in the (completely chaotic) food stand.

Friday night was the four-wheeler rodeo, but we decided to spend some much needed break time at home just hanging out and finishing the rest of the Carnevale miniseries on DVD.  We did go up and did our part to support the fair, however, by buying some of the delicious food we’d smelled all night on Thursday but hadn’t been able to buy.  Last night was more horses (draft, show, specialty, etc…the really fancy stuff) and the doll-buggy contest, which Jessi helped in judging (I was lucky enough to get out of it this year).  On a side note, I’ve learned that cowboy boots can be kinda hot on girls, so I’m determined to buy Jess a pair at some point; I think I might get myself some too to go w/some of my nicer jeans.  Jess’ dad says the Larry’s Boots store down here is pretty cool, so we may have to check that out 🙂

All in all, the fair is a really cool little local event, and tons of people actually seem to come out for it each year.  This year we didn’t actually wake up to find any cows IN our yard like we did last year, and the crazy people screaming around on their four-wheelers after the rodeo (at 12 a.m.) actually stayed out of our yard.  The worst we got was a couple of dropped beer cans from people passing through our yard.  Apparently it’s ok to take beer to the fair as long as you’re of legal drinking age and discreet about it.  That being said, I think we did just fine, and even managed to get involved this year.  Instead of something that made us kinda nervous like last year, I think we’ll be looking forward to Prairie Home Fair, v. 2012.


Aaaand we’re back :)

Wow.  It’s been almost 4 months since our last post.  Things have definitely been pretty crazy since then.  Jess and I finished what was a really hectic school year for both of us, and then immediately jetted off to England.  I’ll try to get the travel journals posted up here sometime in the future, but no promises 🙂  After we got back, Jess went back to working frantically at two jobs, while I focused on settling down and starting Comps readings and getting a ton of much-needed stuff done around the house.  The kittens are great, life’s pretty good, and we encountered an absolute GODSEND in getting to work 2 nights (something like 7 hours a night) at a local ragtime and early jazz festival, making a very decent chunk of change from it.  Summer (and especially early autumn, until I have a paycheck again) will still be pretty tight, but it was definitely a huge blessing to get the opportunity.  Well, Jessi’s got a really popular book blog, I’m working on what’s still a very rudimentary beer blog, as well as a food blog, and hopefully we’re going to get this one up and going as well, so hopefully there’ll be lots from us soon!

Snow, Snow, Snow = BLIZZARD!

Lol, “Blizzard Warning.” That was a new one. So was having MU closed…THREE days in a row.

There are more pictures of the snow on our photo blog, so I’m just posting this one, to give an idea of what we were tirelessly shoveling today. 🙂 Oh yeah, and us shoveling:

Christmas Things

Just in case you were curious, we did, in fact, take a decent number of pictures during our Christmas celebrations. However, our good intentions to blog about those things have seemingly faded into the background. With school starting back up, I don’t anticipate that we truly will get around to blogging about our delicious food and fun times. So, I posted pictures on our Shutterfly page, for all those interested parties. Enjoy! 🙂

The New Job

So, I figure since it’s my fourth day at my new job, I should go ahead and write a brief blog about it. Something to look back on in a year, I suppose–to see how I was doing today and how much I grow. (Or at least HOPEFULLY how much I grow/learn)

First, it is such a different work environment from the previous job. The atmosphere is friendly but much more…professional? I don’t know if that is really the word I’m looking for. At all. Anyway, it’s quiet. I think that’s the biggest difference. To go from an office where people are always moving around and visiting with each other and everyone has a radio playing (well, it was a radio station so I suppose that’s a given) to an office where I think I’m the only one with music playing at my desk (couldn’t handle the quiet) and everyone is kind of secluded in their own offices, well, it’s a big change!

The people here are very nice. Don’t get me wrong, I miss my old coworkers, but I really to have welcoming new coworkers. It always takes me a little time to really warm up to people and get comfortable with them, but I know in time I’ll feel perfectly comfortable here. And…eventually they’ll learn just how quirky I tend to be, lol.

Also, this is a DESK JOB. Plain and simple. I mean, I thought I had a desk job before…but I was wrong. HAHAHA. I’m considering getting one of those ball chairs so I can work on my posture and keep my back “healthy.” It’s, of course, not really in our budget right now, but I think I’ll try to start saving some of my weekly personal budget for one. Guess that means I’ll have to stop spending money on coffee. Good thing I got coffee gift certificates for Christmas!!! Also, working in the library means working in a building with a coffee shop. (*hehehehe*) I already purchased myself a new Bookmark Cafe travel mug. 🙂 They sell Kaldi’s coffee, so it’s pretty good stuff. I need to figure out if they would accept a Kaldi’s gift certificate…then I’d have it made!!

I’m still in the process of learning a lot about what my job really entails and how to do everything. It seems like such a slow process! The only advantage is that I already know how to do the basics using MU’s system. If I didn’t know that, I’d be lost!

So, anyway, I need to get back to my spreadsheets and other work, so I’ll leave you with a picture of the building that I work in now. No more Jesse Hall with its dome!

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

Saturday Surprise

So, this is the first weekend that I haven’t had to work since October. This morning my awesome hubby rolled out of bed first to head up to the post office to pick up the mail (oh, the joys of a PO box). I got up just a couple of minutes later and started the pot of coffee (because really, I can’t begin my day without a cup, let’s be honest). So Dan finally comes back from the post office and what has he brought with him? This:

There happens to be a bakery next to the post office and apparently these were just begging to be purchased for a delicious breakfast. Best hubby ever? I think so. 🙂

Always Look on the Bright Side…

So, this evening, I locked my keys in my car. Now, I have class this evening, so you would think this not a big deal. However, I locked them in the car right after I returned to work with two large containers of coffee for 100 classical musicians. All of the coffee–locked in my car–with the spare set of keys 35 minutes away in Prairie Home. 😦

However, I have the best husband on the whole planet and when I called him and said I need you to drive to Columbia NOW, please–he came to my rescue. Also, I have to look on the bright side and realize that it’s a 35 minute drive from Prairie Home to Columbia (without traffic) and I was actually running about 35 minutes early for the set-up time. So, all in all, not a disaster…but my afternoon could have been better.

One final shout out to my hubby–YOU’RE THE BEST EVER! LOVE YOU! ❤

Well, now I’m off to work a bit more and then go to class…and then work a bit more. Oh Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra…why must you require so much coffee??

Things to be Thankful For…

So I’m currently at the point in the semester (it seems to come about this time every semester) where I ask myself WHY I’m doing what I’m doing, and wondering whether it’s even remotely worth it.  Every minute of every day seems to be filled with stress and despair, but it’s funny how God can proverbially smack you up the side of the head sometimes and let you know that your priorities are perhaps not 100% in order and that perhaps your anxieties are possibly a bit petty.  For example, I’ve spent the last two days panicking about how my semester papers are going to turn out and if my beer shipment sent via FedEx to a fellow member is going to be seized (as apparently it’s against FedEx policy to ship liquor and the cashier seemed suspicious of my package).  Anyway, on the way into school today, the wife and I saw an Amish buggy get annihilated by an overly-hurried driver.  As in, the girl is ridiculously lucky to be alive and relatively uninjured.  Car accidents freak me out in general, but seeing this take place in real time and the destruction it caused was especially scary.  For some odd reason, I haven’t been able to shake the memory all day, and the more I think of it, the more I’m thankful to God for (1) sparing that girl’s life (she couldn’t have been more than 15-16, and with the holidays right around the corner, I can’t imagine the kind of heartache that would bring to her family) and (2) for reminding me that, no matter how bad I think things are, He’s blessed me with a wonderful wife, a beautiful home, and great family and friends, even if they are seemingly so far-removed from us.  Life’s precious, and we should treat it as such.

Life is Crazy!

Life has been so crazy around here lately! Before this past Wednesday, I was lamenting the fact that my last day off was October 17! Thankfully, I took a vacation day Wednesday and (of course) had Thursday off as well. As good as a weekend! Next day off: December 11 and after that things should get back to normal (whatever that is).

Thanksgiving was fantastic, but sadly I didn’t take any pictures. My parents, brother, sister, and grandma came down to our house from IL to share in the holiday with us, since once again I volunteered to work at the library on Black Friday and couldn’t go home. We had all the trimmings–turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, noodles, sweet potatoes, green beans, crescent rolls, and dessert – pumpkin pie and fruit crumble! We watched a movie and hung out all day. I must admit that it was really great to see the family. Hopefully my DH’s family will be able to make it down to visit for Christmas.

I have pictures and recipes and such from the time that has passed since my last blog and hopefully (someday) I’ll get around to posting!

Happy Holidays!