Weekend with the Phantom

Last weekend was dubbed #phantomweekend by my friend Forsh and I, as I made the trek to St. Louis to see her and she treated me to one of the things I’ve always wanted to do: see Phantom of the Opera on stage. It’s currently touring the US, and I didn’t think I was going to get to see it, but she made it happen.

The weekend started on Friday morning with the drive to St. Louis. It had been a really long time since I’d made a substantial drive by myself, but I didn’t mind it. I had some podcasts downloaded, so I stayed entertained the whole way. FYI, Podcast Addict on Android has become one of my favorite apps.

I rolled in early in the afternoon and chilled for a bit with Forsh and Little Forsh. When Mr. Forsh got home, we went to one of the local restaurants, a pizza place called Deweys. The wait was a bit longish, but we drank beer and luckily I wasn’t having many pain issues, so it was all good. The pizza was great. I kept it simple since I’m picky and had their meatball pizza and a salad that completely rocked my world.

After dinner, we rolled back to their house and Forsh and I commenced watching the Phantom of the Opera movie, the one with Gerard Butler and Emmy Rossum. I did some knitting, though most of that knitting was spent fighting with some cabling, which I’ll talk about more in another blog post.

Saturday morning was another relaxing one while we waited for the babysitter to get there. The site had warned play goers to get there early, so we made sure we had plenty of time to find it, get parking, and find our seats. Things couldn’t have worked out better. The drive wasn’t long, and even though we sat in long lines of traffic downtown, we still found parking and got into the theater with about a half hour until showtime.

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The Fabulous Fox Theatre is huge and gorgeous and the lighting was amazing and the seating was comfortable. We found the bathroom, which was this whole lounge area, then found our seats and settled in. I’ve mentioned my love of theater before, but the anticipation for this one kind of had me emotional, and when the play actually started (with that opening piece of Phantom that always does good things for me) I may have shed a few tears of happiness.

The view when you walk into the Fox theater. So awesome!
The view when you walk into the Fox theater. So awesome!

As expected, the show was wonderful and I enjoyed it thoroughly. At intermission, I went and bought one of their specialty drinks (appropriately named The Phantom), so I even got my drink on. The music was good, the actors were good, and the things they did with set and stage design blew my mind. The only thing I wasn’t expecting was the difference in how the guy playing Phantom sang his parts compared to every other version I’ve seen or heard: less angry, more manic. It was still good, though.

After the show, we had dinner at Sweetie Pie’s. I’m kind of out of the loop on anything having to do with the Food Network or endorsed by celebrities, so I hadn’t actually heard about this gem, but Forsh had and was super excited about trying it out.

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Sweetie Pies is a home cooking, cafeteria style type restaurant with cozy booths and friendly staff. I was feeling a little adventurous, so I tried the ribs. They were so good! The corn was also fantastic. Pretty much everything was delicious and the portions were huge, so much so that in not planning to take any with me, I ate too much and then was in a great deal of discomfort at our next stop, which was Trader Joe’s. Still worth it.

We finished the evening with Tangled and knitting and then I decided to start my second reading of Unmasqued since I was already in the Phantom zone. After a quick smoothie breakfast with Forsh the next morning, I headed home, finishing off some podcasts and feeling very happy, if not a little sad that the weekend had to end.

The weekend was awesome and I owe Forsh big time for helping me check something off my bucket list.


Thanksgiving Weekend

The Thanksgiving holiday was a relatively quiet one for us this year. On Wednesday morning, we left early to drive to Illinois to visit J’s grandmother for a few days. It was just the three of us, so things were pretty low key. We had some great food, watched a lot of the Game Show Network and the Food Channel, and I got some knitting and some reading done. We did venture out for a quick shopping excursion on Black Friday to buy J some clothes. Shopping traffic had died down by the time we got there.

A few things I learned this weekend:

1. Frosty the Snowman was fun when I was a child, but as an adult, I found myself asking deep questions. Like why did anyone think it was okay to hop on a train with a snowman? And how come Santa Clause spoke rabbit? And why was the magician jaundiced  but not in a hospital?

2. I will probably never be a fan of The Big Bang Theory. I never thought the stereotypical nerd poking was funny anyway, but the cheap fat joke pot shots and the fact that I find almost all the characters to be jerks pretty much confirmed my opinion.

3.  Newscasters can be sadistic. After watching a group of them on an Illinois channel laughing at Black Friday shoppers being trampled, I was slightly disturbed and have decided not to go into broadcast news. Ever.

4. I wish I had the Game Show Network just so I could watch hours of The Chase. I totally have a love/hate thing for The Beast. I like to see him lose to the contestants, but he’s so funny!


I also learned that some of my walking back pain is coming back, so I need to start moving again to make sure that doesn’t become a problem. I’ve gotten lazy over the past several weeks, and it doesn’t take long for things to go south again. I think if I can do a little bit of walking every day, I can get back to where I was a few months ago.

Also, since Grandma J didn’t have any regular soda in the house, I made it through three days with no pop. Since those first few days are the most challenging, I’m using them as the start of trying to go soda-free again. So far, so good. I’d be lying if I said I haven’t been tempted, but I also know that I feel better when I don’t drink it.

We came home on Saturday so we could use Sunday to run errands, go grocery shopping, and put up our Christmas tree. Sadly, on the way to where our tree and decorations were stored, our car overheated. so plans were sidelined. Luckily, our mechanical friend and hero came through and helped us troubleshoot the problem. I think we have it mostly resolved, but we’ll be keeping an eye on it. We didn’t end up going back out, so the goal for this coming week and next weekend is to get those errands done and decorate for Christmas.

Tomorrow starts the new job, and I have very little anxiety or stress about this. Here’s to hoping it goes smoothly and is as good as I think it’s going to be.



Friendsgiving and Firefighters

This the first year we’ve done an actual “Friendsgiving.” The event for other people seems to be a large gathering and a huge dinner. That was mostly true for us, too, except we decided just to have a small thing with our friends from upstairs with the idea of just being low key and hanging out.

E and I decided we’d spend the day cooking for the husbands, so we went shopping this morning and managed to get everything. A few things were found scavenger hunt style (puff pastry and pumpkin spice were hiding). We were surprised that our haul was kind of small and inexpensive compared to what we thought we were going to spend, but we rolled with it.

Things started out well. We made a pumpkin pie cheesecake thing that didn’t look too pretty and almost suffered from a missing ingredient, but that was alright. We figured it would still taste good (spoiler: it did).

Pumpkin pie!
Pumpkin pie!

We also made green bean casserole in the crockpot, a bacon and corn casserole, and garlic mashed potatoes as sides, and sausage and cheese crescents for an appetizer. Everything was going pretty good, right? Then…things got interesting.

First of all, I’m going to disclaimer this by saying neither E nor myself are really adventurous cooks, but we wanted to try something new. Also, recipes are to be followed, right? Right! So we decided to make Beef Wellington, because she found a seemingly easy recipe and it seemed like something cool and different.

Apparently, sometimes even following the directions leads to crazy things happening. Like when you try to sear meat, and you get smoke. A lot of it. Smoke that starts out as just a little cloud and then suddenly fills the apartment. And sometimes the windows in the apartment won’t open to ventilate the place, so you have to open the door to the hallway, and then the smoke goes into the hallway.

And every freakin’ alarm in the apartment building goes off.


Yep. That happened. The fact that we smoked out the first floor was bad enough. The fact that people were standing in the lobby wondering what the heck was going on, also not great.

And then we heard the sirens. Yes, our friendsgiving dinner brought all the firemen to the yard, and they were like “Hey. Where’s the fire?” Luckily, there was no actual fire, but they had to air the building out and turn off the fire alarms. I may have cried and laughed at the same time because the situation was kind of hilariously awful. My favorite part was when the fireman asked for the name of the person on the lease. My next favorite part (really) was when they said I wouldn’t be fined and that “these things happen.”

Shout out to the Manhattan Fire Department for being quick to respond and super nice about the whole thing.

I’m going to assume our awesome landlords aren’t going to fine us for this, as it really was an accident and there was no damage to anything (that I’m aware of). E and I did learn that neither of us are likely to do anything experimental in the kitchen anytime soon. Even after all that, though, the Beef Wellington was delicious, and dinner overall was pretty darn good…even the weird looking pumpkin pie.

The rest of the night was pretty uneventful around our place. We ate, visited, and watched a few hours of Epic Rap Battles of History. Overall, it was a good day, and at least we know our first Friendsgiving will be memorable. Who knows? Maybe next time we’ll invite more people and make it a real bonfire!

Just kidding. I’m going to avoid that if at all possible.


Gen Con Wrap Up

I wasn’t as ambitious this year as I was last year and didn’t do a daily post for Gen Con. A lot of that was because things were a bit different for Jon and I this year. Not bad, but different, and we wanted to try to minimize things, which meant not taking a computer with us.

Other differences: minimal bag carrying, working part time for AEG, no digi-cam or cosplay photos, different hotel room and travel routes, and no food truck experiments. While generally these could be seen as minor differences, they did give us a slightly different Gen Con experience than in the past.

I’ve decided to break this post down into our Gen Con highlights and lowlights, complete with a few random pictures I was able to take with my phone.



1. Working for AEG – Fellow gamers might be familiar with AEG or Alderac Entertainment Group. They have a bunch of fun games, including Legend of the Five Rings, Trains, and Doomtown: Reloaded. This year, we had the opportunity to work part time for them. They are a great bunch of people, and it’s hard to go wrong when “work” means “teaching people to play new games.”

2. Playtesting – We made it a point to get in three playtests in the First Exposure Playtest Hall, one of our annual favorites. Basically, you pick a game that’s not yet out on the market, play it, and give the creators feedback. We did a board game, an RPG, and a miniatures game and had a blast trying out all of them. Jon and I could probably take one full day to do nothing more than playtest. Seriously.

Dream Heist was a blast...hope to buy this one when it comes on the market!
Dream Heist was a blast…hope to buy this one when it comes on the market!

3. Swag – Volunteering has its perks, and we ended up bringing home a ton of games. On our last day there, we splurged a bit and bought a few things as well. It’s safe to say we have enough games to last us the rest of the year and beyond, including a new horror RPG for me to scare people with. Mwahahaha.

Game on!
Game on!

4. Culinary finds – For various reasons, we didn’t end up trying any food trucks this year. After our initial annual splurge at The Ram, it was mostly Steak ‘N’ Shake for us, with two tasty exceptions. For breakfast one morning, we discovered a great restaurant called First Watch that served amazing food. We also found the part of the mall that houses Haagen-Dazs. So that was a thing that happened one evening.



5. Walking – We walked everywhere! We even took walks when we didn’t need to, and breaks were minimal. Instead of making Jon go back to the car if we needed something, I went with him. I’ve come a long way in five conventions, and considering how much better it makes the whole experience, it’s a good reminder to keep up the “training.”


1. Hotel – Our regular hotel doubled their prices last year, so we booked another one that was more within what we were used to paying. Normally we get lucky with the cheap hotels, but the one we got this year was awful. It smelled funny, had a sad breakfast,  no soundproofing, and even though the staff was friendly, they weren’t super efficient or knowledgeable.

2. Traffic – Gen Con wasn’t the only thing going on last week and weekend. The Indiana State Fair was happening and Saturday brought a Colts pre-season game. Even though we got to the ICC early on Thursday, we stayed gridlocked for about a half hour and then had trouble finding parking, something we’ve never had an issue with before. Leaving the convention center on Saturday brought more gridlocked traffic among the sea of gamers and Colts fans.

3. Con crud – For the first time ever, I got sick after Gen Con. I started feeling it on the drive home on Sunday, and on Monday it was full blown grossness. It’s about four days later and I’m still feeling the effects of it, but I’m recuperating. Washing your hands religiously is a good thing, but sometimes the crud will find a way.

4. The drive – I normally love road trips and I love to drive, but this year the drive felt super long and uncomfortable. Our trip started with a few annoyances, like the gas station not being opened early enough for us to get a drink and Dunkin’ Donuts not having the mix needed for the drink I wanted. Later it got worse with stalled vehicles on the highway and rush hour traffic. I realize none of these are huge and most of them are to be expected, but they seemed more dramatic this year than they should have been.

However, we did stop and see the world’s largest wind chime again, and that was pretty awesome!IMG_20140812_132326[1]

All in all, our fifth year at Gen Con was a success and we’re already looking forward to 2015.


Kansas City and Tori Amos

This weekend, my friend Janet and I went to Kansas City, MO to see Tori Amos in concert on her Unrepentant Geraldines tour. This was my fifth Tori concert and Janet’s second. We kicked our adventure off Saturday morning around noon with the drive to KC and a quick stop for lunch at the travel plaza where we saw fellow MHKers who were going to to an event in Lawrence.

The drive was quick and easy, and after touring the one way streets in KC’s Power and Light District to find the theater, we pulled up to our hotel to check in. The Aladdin is an old but updated boutique hotel with valet parking and a spa in the basement. Janet’s husband hooked us up with points for the room, free breakfast, and free valet parking. We didn’t know about the free breakfast or parking, so that was a nice surprise, as was the complimentary glasses of champagne they gave us at check-in.

Kicking off the fun with some bubbly.
Kicking off the fun with some bubbly.

The room was kind of cool and funky. We got a king sized bed because that was all that was available. The woman who checked us in seemed a little confused at first, but we assured her we were just kicking it high school style.

How does one get one of these chairs? Because I loved it.
How does one get one of these chairs? Because I loved it.

In lieu of exploring the area in the heat, we chilled in the hotel room with some drinks and “Mean Girls” on cable. After showers, we decided to walk around the corner to have dinner at the Kobe Japanese Steakhouse. It was a little bit of a splurge, but not horrible, and hibachi makes for a fun dinner experience.

From there, we went ahead and lined up outside the theater. We were there early enough to get close to the doors, and we got the chance to visit with other Tori fans during the wait. That’s one of my favorite parts of the concerts…fellow fans are super friendly.

Once the doors opened, we went to the merch station where I bought a tote bag and met Tori’s daughter, Tash. She was genuinely sweet and gave us hugs and chatted with us for awhile.

The theater was comfortable and kind of cozy. Since we were there early, we waited about an hour for the opening act, then another half hour for Tori to start. I had heard that The Midland didn’t have bad seats, and while technically that was true, that doesn’t take into account what happens when a bunch of tall people sit in front of a short person. Because the seating is not tiered, there were some challenges seeing through the tall gentlemen in front of me, the woman who kept dipping her head right into my line of sight in front of them, and the guy in the hat in front of her.

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Luckily, being in the back row meant we could stand without blocking anyone, so I stood part of the time and sat at just the right angle the rest of the time, a feat made easier when the woman with the dippy head left early.

The show was just as good as we’d hoped. Tori looked and sounded amazing. Hearing some of her songs done live triggers all the feels. I teared up at some of the songs that I don’t usually cry to. For Lizard Lounge, she covered “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” and “Over the Rainbow” (relevant to Kansas, even though the concert was in Missouri). I was especially stoked to hear “Take to the Sky” in the encore, as that song hits me on a personal level.

While Tori was great, I did take issue with some of my fellow concert goers. While I’m all for showing your enthusiasm and love, doing it every thirty seconds, including when she’s trying to talk to the audience, is just obnoxious. Also, if you’re going to spend money on the concert, think about the fact that other people have done the same thing and don’t make the concert your social hour. We had people behind us who rudely carried on a conversation the whole time. Not cool, and I think some of the people down from us were ready to start a fight afterwards over it.

We walked back to the hotel room and debriefed over Doritos and Chex Mix, then crashed out. This morning was breakfast and the drive home, with a stop for some Baskin Robbins on the way. Because sometimes ice cream just sounds better than an actual lunch.

For a weekend away, it was actually very relaxed, but I’m still taking today just to reset, clean, and get ready for the work week. Now the planning begins for the next tour and another girls’ weekend. It’s likely two years away, and I’m already excited for it.



New Digs and New Routines

My blogging mojo flew the coop for awhile. In the days leading up to the move, I didn’t really have anything to write about. We were laying low and heading home after work. Even our weekends were fairly mellow. Plus, there was stress. Since I don’t like to use this space for venting, I didn’t want to come to the keyboard feeling out of sorts.

So I took a break and let things simmer. I think I’m ready to get back in the routine, but bear with me. I need to find my blogging feet again.

The good news? We’re in our new apartment! We stretched the move itself over a full week. Because of the way things worked out, we got the keys to the new apartment on July 7 but didn’t have to give the keys to the old one back until July 12. Jon and I spent every evening after work unloading the car in Manhattan, unpacking boxes, then loading the car back up again in Wamego. It was an exhausting process.

On Friday, I took the day off to finish emptying and cleaning the old apartment. This meant a total of twelve trips up and down three flights of stairs. I was in pain the rest of the weekend, but honestly? It was worth it to be able to say that I could do it. Our last move was horrible for me, so I was happy that this time around I could actually be of use.

We had some helpers that evening, and even though we’d planned to continue the move on Saturday, we didn’t need to do much. All of our boxes and furniture were moved before 9pm Friday night, and the only thing we did on Saturday was send Jon and two of our helpers back to finish cleaning and to grab our last few storage items.

I tried resting up on Saturday since I was doing the Relay for Life that night, but those stair trips took their toll, and the pain was a little more than I was prepared for. I did make it to the event for a few hours though, but I ended up leaving early. Between the pain and the heat and the exhaustion, I wasn’t feeling well.

Sunday was dedicated to unpacking the rest of what we could and having our new neighbors (but old friends) down to visit for a little while. Since we’d done so much throughout the week, unpacking was pretty easy. Everything found a “home” except for some books and wall hangings, and that’s only because we need a bookshelf and some command strips, both of which are waiting until they fit into the budget.

So much cabinet space...and this is just one small corner of our kitchen.
So much cabinet space…and this is just one small corner of our kitchen.

I love our new place. When we saw it the first time, we took into account the fact that it was smaller than our old place, so we figured that once the furniture was in, things would be a little cramped. Not the case at all. In fact, we have way more room than we’d originally thought we had, as well as more storage space than we’d anticipated.

It’s comfortable and cozy. The shower water doesn’t run different temperatures, we have a ton of stuff within walking distance, and coming home for lunch is pretty great…other than the fact that I don’t necessarily want to leave once I’m here. For the first time in a long time, I’m looking forward to having people over, and I can’t wait to bake in our nice, big kitchen.

Now that the move is over, it’s time to try to get back into my routine and get going on projects that I’ve been procrastinating. I’m still settling in and work has been busy, so it’s been somewhat of a challenge, but I think in a few weeks things should feel more settled on the homefront. Which is really good, because the rest of the summer is going to be busy with travel and social times.



Hanging at Tulip Fest 2014

This year was my first year going to the Wamego Tulip Festival. I haven’t gone in the past probably due to a combination of not being around and not being able to walk all over the place, neither of which was an issue this year. I met up with a couple of friends and we joined the festivities.


There were bouncy houses for days, and kids could get an all day pass to all the bounce they wanted for eight dollars. I’m ready for adult bouncy houses to be a thing. There were also booths of hand crafted items and homemade food.  I picked up a handmade necklace and earring set made from ammunition shells.


The food court offered a few different things: asian noodles, BBQ, and italian sausage sandwiches. The turkey legs looked tempting, but…



…I went with the italian sausage sammy. It was super spicy.  FB pointed out the face in my bun by asking me to tag it as a friend. Bun face and I could have been friends, I guess. But I ate him.


Baby animals are the cutest. Besides these lambies, we saw baby chickens and ducks, a calf, and a goat. I’m not sure if the goat was a baby, but he was still adorable.


We found this one lonely little tulip. A few minutes later, we found a few more, but the tulips didn’t seem to be plentiful this year. Then again, we may have just missed seeing them.

2014-04-12 13.33.15On the way to the beer garden and winery, I gave in to the call of the cherry limeade. It was delicious. If I’m lucky, they’ll have these at the Kansas Sampler Festival in a couple weeks.

Other than the expected sore feet, walking was easy peasy. Unfortunately, my body malfunctioned in other ways, and I ended up having to come home after just a few hours. I got a bit of a sunburn, despite using sunscreen, but it was worth it. It was a fun day with good friends, and I’m glad I went.

It’s going on tomorrow, too, so if you’re in the area, I definitely recommend checking it out.





Gifts and Prizes

Today was rainy and cold and it made me sleepy. I’d like to propose an employee nap time at the day job, but I’m pretty sure that’ll get tossed out the window. Still, I can dream, right?


I was feeling well enough to go to work today. Things weren’t too crazy, so I kept a handle on the to-do list. One of my friends, a field bee, knows of my geekiness and brought me a gift from a con she was recently at.


Admittedly, this reminds me that I really need to catch up on Doctor Who. Now that we have ChromeCast, I don’t think I have an excuse not to. I’m not ready to say goodbye to Matt Smith, so maybe that’s why I’m procrastinating. As long as I don’t see his regeneration, he’s still my Doctor, right?!

Remember that post where I talked about the Twitter chat that lit a blogging fire under my butt (last night)? What I failed to mention was that these chats often come with giveaways, and the giveaway for last night was the book Everything But the Posts by Becca Ludlum, who also took part in the chat.


I won! I was one of 5 winners, and I sent FitFluential my mailing address. Whenever I win something, I pretty much tell the whole world. I’ll be doing a review on the book as soon as I read it, so stay tuned.

It was Jon’s turn to feel under the weather, so it was an early night at home. We ended up watching Zack and Miri again, and I caught up on some internet things. It’ll be another early night and then…

…tomorrow’s Friday!

Until then…


Apartment Evolution

I failed at getting back to blogging every night, but things have been busy and I’ve been tired. I had a doctor’s appointment a couple days ago. My lab results came back, and even though most things checked out okay, it seems as if I’m “fairly anemic.” I knew I had low iron due to the fact that I’m usually turned away from giving blood, but I thought I was on the low end of okay for general health purposes. Apparently that’s not the case, so I’m going to be popping iron for awhile to get back up to par. If the drop in iron is a recent thing, that would account for the constant tiredness. Hopefully the pills will help.

Besides the doctor, there’s been other excitement. We signed the lease for a new apartment! This venture wasn’t without its stresses, and for a quick second, we didn’t think we were going to get it. But things fell into place and everything is working out.

I love the apartment. It’s a one-bedroom in one of the newest apartment buildings in town. We have friends who live there, so we knew a long time ago that if we stayed in the area, that’s where we wanted to live. It’s centrally located. Jon can walk to work. We can walk to the store and several restaurants. It has a washer and dryer, a dishwasher, and a garbage disposal. There’s an onsite fitness room, lots of closet and cabinet space, and it’s the kind of place where the doors lock after a certain time and guests have to be buzzed in.

All of the places I’ve lived in since college have been chosen based on what was cheap. Sure, I’ve still lived in places I’ve loved. My two bedroom in the Soo was a great place to live. Unfortunately, I lived there at a less than great time in my life. The apartment I had after the ex and I called it quits was super tiny, but I loved that one too, possibly even more than the bigger one because it represented freedom, independence, and a new start. There’s been some okay places and some really bad places, but since moving to Kansas, I’ve never been in a position to get a nicer, newer apartment.

So for me, this is pretty exciting.

We move in July, which gives us a few months to pack and save some money for some new furniture and appliances. We’ll be selling some things, donating some other things, and trying to find a storage solution for our totes and Christmas items.

Waiting is going to be tough, but it will also be beneficial. We have plenty of time to organize and make this move as easy as possible. Of course, we’re also great at procrastinating, so let’s hope we stick to the plan and not wait until the week before we move to start the ball rolling.

Other excitement: I got Employee of the Month at work, Jon starts his new job on Monday, and there’s a good chance I’m actually going to walk a 5k in April.

That’s all I got for tonight. Time for sleep.


Good News and the Concept of “Home”

Jon got a job! The place he’d interviewed with called and offered him the position, and he starts in about a week and a half. Insert huge sigh of relief and happiness here. Besides knowing we’ll be able to pay the bills, having a solid plan and knowing that I can start planning for things feels good. I feel like I’ve been putting life on hold, and now I can let go and just “be” for awhile.

What’s interesting about the situation is that several months ago, we wanted to get out of this area. We wanted to live in a different state or at least a different city. We were disillusioned with MHK and had started feeling detached. We even told people we had no intentions of staying. I don’t know if it ever came across as insulting (in hindsight, it probably did). I didn’t mean for it to be. But I’d never embraced this town. I didn’t like it when I first moved here, and I often forgot about the good things because I was so annoyed by the not-so-good things.

Which is why it was kind of strange when Jon and I started talking about how much we’d miss the area. We started thinking that staying here wouldn’t be bad at all. Eventually, we realized we didn’t want to leave at all. There were pros to leaving: a new place, a new adventure, possibly a cheaper venture depending on where we ended up. But something big had shifted for us. We wanted to stay here…not just in Kansas, but in Manhattan (which is misleading, since we live in Wamego, but I’m referring to the area in general).

I’ve never called Kansas “home” because it felt like a pit stop on the road to somewhere else. Maybe it still is. Maybe in a few years, we’ll end up making the big move we expected this time. At this moment, though, I get to plant my feet in Kansas. I can plan and commit to things. I can hike the Flint Hills and find all the area geocaches and continue supporting the local museums, arts, and zoo. I can finally relax and let myself love the area and let some roots settle in. They may or may not grow deep, but they can take hold for a little while and flourish.

While I’ve managed to make this post all about me, I am truly proud of Jon and nervous for him since I know starting a new job can be kind of terrifying. Staying in the area also means we don’t have to make a huge move, but we are going to make a small one. We’ll be looking for an apartment in Manhattan and moving back there probably sometime this summer. We know exactly where we want to live and it looks like we’ll meet all the requirements, so fingers crossed we’re not missing something and our application gets accepted.

The excitement came on the tail of a little bit of sadness, as one of my good friends moved on to her own new adventure today. The good part is she’ll still be a co-worker, and now I can plan to visit her and my other friends who have moved away in the last few years.

One last note before I go to bed, related to the rest of the post because it involves being able to actually plan for something again: I got tickets to see Tori Amos in August!

On that note, I need sleep.