I can't get over this funk that I have been in with JTL... I feel like I have zero to write about.

My life has been so consumed with work, school, kids, family.

I have been cooking/baking a ton more so that could be a new direction I take with this blog. I just really need to do some soul searching and commit to this again. It's been far too long.

My calling...

Ok... I am going to get spiritual here...

I became a new member of a church within the last couple of years and annually we get a mailer with activities within the church that parishoners want to get involved in. There was one for the Bereavment Group. I expressed an interest and about a month later I got a phone call and set up a meeting. I met with Jane (not real name) and asked her what the parish does for loved ones who pass away. She said all they do is mail a card. I then began to spill to her what I believe the church should do. While the gesture of a card is really nice, what happens two weeks after the card is recieved?

So I told her about my life story of losses and how I wished there was some sort of support group to talk about my loved one(s) to help the healing process. She thought it was a wonderful idea and she believes that it would be a great asset to the church community in my area. I was then asked to contact someone in the Diocese to see if he would be willing to instruct a class for our Church Cluster community.

Fast-forward to today... Tuesday will be my last class in a 7 class course. I have to admit going to these classes have been very eye-opening and it's nice to have a small support group of others who are attending with me from other parishes.

After all of these years I have lost my father, I believe I have found my calling. A way to live out his legacy. I will be Co-Founder of this group with Jane.

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!!

After being back WAY too long I am finally getting the time to update.

I came, I saw - Oprah. I must admit getting up at 5AM to primp up wasn't bad. I nursed a Venti coffee from Starbucks to get me through the first party of my morning. The whole Oprah process wasn't too bad. We waited in line then as we walked through the door, the Harpo staff asked us to take our coats off for our coat check. Then we checked in -- I will circle back to this in a few. After we checked in we went through security. Security searched through our purses taking our cell phones, pens and any paper and keeping it in a zip lock bag. After those items were removed we were able to get our purses back. We headed upstairs to a holding room. We are told what the show is going to be -- Friday's Live Show... We waited there for a little over an hour. In the room were big flat screen televisions showing clips with Oprah and some of her notable shows. After an hour there were parties called by name. Turns out these people were hand selected by the person checking us in. They have you take your coat off to see what you are wearing. So evidently we didn't make the cut... No biggie. After the bottom part of her studio was filled in then we were called in by number.

Walking into Oprah's studio was exilirating! The next thing I thought was this place really isn't as big as it looks. I guess the cameras add 15 pounds to the set too. We get seated and we are told who is going to be on the show, Jimmy Fallon and the founder of Facebook and the men in the Christian the Lion video. While I don't really care for the live show I thought it was very interesting to see a live show filmed.

Before the hosts appear on stage there is a woman that comes out to hype us up with music and getting us pumped to see Oprah.

Then Mark Consuelous is introduced, Oprah comes out with Alli, then Gayle.

Oprah seemed to be tired and a little pissy. I was disappointed of her attitude and lack of interaction with her audience. I guess I just expected more. I know she had an after the show tapings where she actually talked to her audience. We all have bad mornings and even bad days. I won't hold it against her. So I think that's what I was expecting. But none-the-less I was very happy I went. We had the opportunity to attend the second taping of the day and we missed out by 3 people! It was a bummer, but obviously it wasn't meant to be. We headed over to Oprah's store and I bought a t-shirt.

We went to lunch at Ed Debevicks and that was an interesting visit... But it was funny. The food was mediocre at best but the entertainment was funny.

For Saint Patricks Day we went to see the Dying of the Chicago River. That was really a lot of fun. We got a nice spot right on the river and froze our asses off. But it was very neat. The local plumbers union uses an orange vegtable based powder to turn the river green and the zip along the river in little boats to stir up the waters. We got some good pics and I got a picture with a Mounted Chicago Policeman.

Later that afternoon we went to lunch at a Thai place. I didn't pick the best dish. I went with the recommended one something with basil instead of what I was eying out. I hate it when that happens! Afterwards we went out to Howl at the Moon and were there until about midnight. We had a blast! They had a live dualing pianists, fiddler and a drummer. There may have been more but I can't recall. We met some really cool people, Kim, Tom, "Bullshirt" dude, Heath, and our waiter to name a few.

Here's to hoping I go next year!

What should I wear to Oprah?

It is now T- minus 3 days before I am under the same roof as Oprah Winfrey. I will actually see her in person. I need to dress to impress even though I will be lost in the sea of her audience. Who knows if the topic will require audience participation. I am a loud mouth and would probably raise my hand for actual bragging rights that I was there. I can't bring in my camera so there goes my chance of taking a snap shot of Lady O. I can't Photo Shop myself in with her giving me a hug or a high five. So I will resort to memories. Hell I have got this far... I am not going back now.

I went shopping specifically for the show. I have nice clothes, but I wanted to look perfect for Oprah. So during my lunch hour I tried on as many clothes as I could and actually found two perfect outfits. One is a purple-ish/pink-ish long sleeve top with steel grey shimmery pants and the other is black pants with a black and cream swirly design. Both are very cute and comfortable. I already know what shoes I am going to wear. I just need to settle on an outfit. It will depend on how I feel.... You know the typical "this makes me look fat". I try to post pics, not sure if I will get pics with me dressed in the clothes as I am pressed for time until I leave.

I can't wait to see what the topic is going to be. My only hope is I am not bawling my eyes out... People I work with keep saying I hope you win something and honestly I am perfectly content with the opportunity to participate in the audience. Whatever happens, happens. I am fortunate enough to be able to go.

All I keep thinking is -- I want to make a good impression. Sometimes under pressure and this is the ultimate pressure I make a total fool of myself... I hold meetings and have presentations, but this is at a grand scale not to mention I am not the one on stage!! Let's just hope I don't walk out of the bathroom with toilet paper on my shoe or sticking out my pants. Then Oprah would deny she ever saw me!

The things die-hard fans go through... I swear. See you soon Oprah!! I never in a million years thought I would say that.