Monday, November 30, 2009

Rochester, Minnesota

Things look good in Rochester.  If you can survive the harsh winters and smaller-town living, this may be the place to be.  Henry and I went to the interview dinner last night with Nick.  The program here seems great, and the food was really good too.

Henry and I have to check out of the hotel here in just a few minutes, but I am loving the Spring Hill Suites by Marriott.  We did our laundry for free and breakfast was included with the room.  Unlike the Hilton, the Internet was also complimentary.

H is an army crawling machine.  He first figured it out on the Page's living room floor.  We also have our first baby injury.  This morning he opened a drawer and then shut his finger in it.  Our days of being safely immobile are over.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Mall of America

We arrived in Minneapolis late this afternoon, rented a gold Ford Focus and checked into the Holiday Inn.  Sadly, it is not a Holiday Inn Express, but we got it so cheaply by bidding on Priceline, it was almost like stealing.  We listened to the nail-biter BYU vs Utah (not on TV here, very disappointing).  Then we headed to the Mall of America.  I am not sure if it's still the largest mall in the world, but it was when it was built.  It is a travel destination in itself, and it is huge.  We wandered around for a bit.  I was amazed at how crowded it was.  It was great for people watching, including seeing a lot of bad behaviour.  People are like animals.

Henry has a cold.  It was inevitable and the really amazing thing is he held out this long to have his first illness.  He's been a trooper, just a little fussy and clingy.  He spiked a fever 30,000 feet in the air on the flight from Albequerque to St. Louis.  The saddest part was he didn't have energy to play with his toys.  He was very cuddly, which was both cute and pathetic.

We were home less than 24 hours.  It was just time enough to water the plants, clean our clothes, and pack everything back up.  People have asked if it's Henry's first flight, and I'm almost embarassed to admit how traveled he is.  Nick interviews at the Mayo Clinic on Monday and University of Minnesota on Tuesday.

They've updated the blogger editor, and now I can't find spell check.  Blog wise, things have been going downhill around here.

Blog Still Broken, Can't update on the go.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A Boy on the Move

Fwd: Interacting Hydrocarbons

From our museum visit Saturday. 

Subject: Interacting Hydrocarbons

H really loved this exhibit. He's a born nerd, and I couldn't be more proud.

Kara Johnson

Museum of Science and Industry

I think I can post to my blog again. Ididnt change anything, it just started working again. This was supposed to post on Saturday.

H and I went to the museum today while Nick was interviewing. H was not exactly impressed, but he will be when we come back when he's older.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Almost Famous

We're in San Diego with the Page family, and it feels like old times. They greeted us late last night with butternut squash chocolate chip cookies (similar to the pumpkin variety). We stayed up too late sharing funny stories, and the kids were super excited in the morning to see Henry.

Today Henry is using up some of his 15 minutes of fame. We went to the Pioneer Woman's book signing in St. Louis last week (which I plan to blog about later). Today the Pioneer Woman blogged about it, and used a picture of me, Henry, and the delightful Pam P. from Columbia, MO. Pam had been a stranger at the start of the evening, but we became fast friends after she invited us to sit next to her. Check out her comment on the baby mullet post. That information made that child even creepier.

Monday, November 23, 2009

In Fresno

I've been having some technical difficulties with the blog.  Typically when we're on the go, I email a quick post containing a picture from my phone.  I've been doing that on this trip, but the posts have been disappearing into thin air.  I have no idea where they are going, but they're not showing up here.  As a result, you're missing out on Henry's visit to the Museum of Science and Industry, his first bus ride, and his visit along Michigan Avenue after their lighting ceremony. 

We stayed in a hotel that was pretty nice- the Club Quarters Hotel in the loop area of  downtown Chicago.  We used the elevated train to get to and from the airport, which was a little interesting with all of our stuff, but worked out pretty well.  We were lucky the weather was so nice- sunny with the high about 50.

We then flew accross the country to San Jose, California in a chair in the sky going 500 miles per hour.  Henry was nearly perfect throughout the flight.  A few minutes after take off, we realized we had sent the baby wipes in our checked baggage.  I know, that's the mistake of a novice parent.  But he was a perfect gentleman and we didn't need them, so we dodged that bullet.

We rented a Ford Fusion and drove to Fresno.  We're staying in "downtown" Fresno.  It's looking a little depressed.  I came to Fresno about thirteen years ago to visit my dad's aunt, C. Anne.  But other than their mild winters, I don't really remember much.  At a glance, it's less appealing to live here than the other places he has interviewed.  No offence to Marcie, but California seems just a little too crazy.  I mean, do I want to live in a state with a bottle deposit and is always on fire?  The data for Fresno that I was looking at was from 2005, and their unemployment was 13% back then.  I'm sure if we end up here things would work out just fine, but I don't think we'd live downtown.

Tonight, our trip gets really exciting.  We head back up to San Jose, and then fly to San Diego to be with the Pages!  Sarah and Nate allowed us to invite ourselves over for Thanksgiving. One thing we have missed since they moved from St. Louis to San Diego is their delicious pastries, so I'm glad we're visiting over a pie-laden holiday.

What are your favorite things in San Diego?

Friday, November 20, 2009

How Henry Sees the City

There's a 7-Eleven across from our hotel. The wee babe and I went and
for a big gulp, bought a sandwich at a local shop, and are back
inside. Nick is off to the residents' dinner.

In Chicago, In Luxury

We took the orange line train from the midway airport to our hotel
downtown. The trip wasn't too bad. Nick is here to interview at Mount
Sinai. H and I are just along for the ride.

Last week Nick was in Chicago to interview at U of Illinois. He stayed
at a "flop-house" level motel in the heart of Chinatown. The room was
only about a foot larger than the bed and the cleanliness was

For the same price, this weekend we're staying in a three-star hotel
downtown. This hotel is nice enough, I felt out of place when we
checked in.

The bottled water is one of the perks here. There's stacks of empty
bottles and a water vending machine. It makes it feel more special
than of they just had a stack of bottled water.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Library Story Time

The Med School Wives met for library story time today. Slight problem- no one from the group showed up except me and Natalie, and our babies are too young to care they're being read to by a stranger. It is always fun to see Natalie. She's on my list of "favorite St. Louis people."

Above, Henry shows us how clapping is done.
Baby M naps on her mama's shoulder.
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Baby Mullet: Another Bad Idea

At The Pioneer Woman's book signing last night, I saw another "bad idea." This is the baby half-mullet. Now, the picture isn't the best because I was trying to take it while going fairly unnoticed. If I had taken another shot to get a better illustration of the baby half-mullet, it would have been conspicuous. This infant appears to have a mullet. That tuft of hair you see on the left of the photo is definitely mullet-esque. The reason it isn't a mullet is because it's ONLY on the left. The long hair does not continue across the back of the head onto the right. It's a sort of half-mullet growing out of the baby's lower right quadrant of her head. The mullet section of her hair was darker and coarser than the rest of her head, so I think this is just how her hair has been growing. Seriously though, just cut it off. Give the rest of the head a chance to catch up.

Oh how I wish I had a picture of this in profile.
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He Claps!

He first did this Sunday morning. It's been nice to have Nick home in
the morning this week.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


By ridiculous, I mean this outfit is ridiculously awesome. It is my most unreasonable clothing purchase for him so far, but certainly one of my favorites. Nick had asked me to get him some church clothes. This counts, right? I bent or broke some of my own baby-dressing rules, but he just looks so adorable in this outfit.

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Thursday, November 12, 2009

Laughing Place

I found what makes Henry laugh: oink like a pig and he thinks it's hysterical.

Nick is taking his Step 2 board exam right now. He's been very diligent studying. The stress has had me at a breaking point, so I'm very glad that he's taken it. However, I still won't have him back- he leaves in the morning for a general surgery interview in Chicago. Once he gets back from that, I may actually see him.
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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

My Karma Ran Over Your Dogma

The title is a reference to a bumper sticker.

I was on my way to meet my friend Natalie and her little, cute, two-week-old Baby M. While waiting for the stop light at McCausland and Southwest, I spotted a cute little beagle wandering around unsupervised at the 7-Eleven. I decided I couldn't just leave the dog there because I would just worry the rest of the day if she were safe. I pulled into the 7-Eleven, called the vet's number on her tag and her owner picked her up ten minutes later. It was a pretty easy fix, but I felt as if I had done a good deed today.

I need good dog karma. Caesar is a know bolter- he'll always run away given the opportunity. So in thanks to the multiple people who in the past have called to say "I found your dog," I helped little Ruby the Beagle make it home today. I'm hoping it will help build up good karma for any future running away he will do.

So Ruby and her owner were reunited, and I was soon at lunch with this little gem. (See picture above) So tiny and so sweet. It's true that you can't believe how fast they change.
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New Toy and Teeth

Jo Ellen sent Henry the Fisher Price Play and Learn Learning House. He doesn't know exactly how awesome it is yet, but he loves it.

A rare sighting of his bottom two teeth.
He has now cut an upper tooth.
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Your Henry Fix

And Happy Birthday Liz!
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Saturday, November 7, 2009

We Made It

H & I are at the top of the Compton Heights Water tower. Elevation 700
ft, visibility unlimited.

The arch is in the distant, blown out background.

Friday, November 6, 2009

The Face of Trouble

I'm lowering the crib height in the morning. He pulled himself up onto
his knees from sitting.

Sara's River Tour

When Sara was here, we went for a drive to see the arch. First we saw it from the west at the Old Cathedral, then we drove to the road east of the arch and found out we weren't going on closer. The heavy rains of the previous week had flooded the river. I don't think this compares to the flood of 1995, but for someone who came from a desert, it's pretty impressive.
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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

On The Fence

Miss A came upstairs wearing her parents' fencing mask and said, "I'm

Yes, you are.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

15 Hours in St. Louis

Sara Garff is like my other sister. Along with her sister Liz (aka Rosie), we played together as kids and were really more like family. Sara even lived with my family for a short while a few years back. Anyway, Sara actually came to see me in St. Louis. She was only in town for about 15 hours, but we made the most of it. She arrived at 1:00 AM, fresh from visiting her sister Liz and family in Iowa. Her husband Ryan and baby G were with her, but Ryan is on his way to military tech school in Biloxi, Mississippi. In the morning, Ryan continued in their car towards his southern destination and Sara and I started some blitz tourism.
Of course, anyone who comes to town must visit the botanical gardens. Then we had lunch at Sweetie Pie's, as seen on Diner's, Drive Ins, and Dives. And of course, you need to see the arch if you've come to St. Louis. We drove to the old cathedral parking lot to get pictures with the arch and a good view. We drove past the new Busch stadium and the old courthouse. We then went to the New Cathedral (which is about 100 years old) to see the beautiful mosaics. We also made a quick stop to the Schnuck's grocery store on Lindell, which is always a true St. Louis cultural experience.

But what's my favorite thing for any visitors to experience here in this great city? That's right, it's eyebrow threading. The technician uses ordinary sewing thread to remove hair with amazing precision. Their sign advertises "The Eyebrows of Your Dreams," and they're not kidding. It's the best your eyebrows have ever looked. Everyone who comes to see me makes a stop at the mall on the way to the airport to have it done.

For having such a short amount of time and two babies in tow, we managed to fit a lot in.
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Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Before Picture

This is what his outfit looked like at home, before we went to Brigham and Janette's. This is before he pooped and it went running down both his legs, soaking through his clothes and getting onto mine.

I had to hose him down in their tub. I always have an extra outfit for him, but not for myself. What was I thinking?
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More Bad Decisions

This is distantly related to the "Shamonica" bad decisions sweatshirt post.

When I saw this older couple at the garden yesterday, I thought "Poor lady. She sat on something, and she just has to walk around like that until she gets home."

Then I got closer (because they're old and walk slowly) and realized she hadn't sat in anything.
Her shirt was embroidered like that- on purpose.
Bad decision.
If you're old enough to john AARP, you're at least triple the age when you can carry off a design on your bottom. Just sayin'.

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