Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Halloween Photographs

I set up a little studio in the house today so I could shoot some quick portraits of the kids and us in our costumes before we went out trick or treating. Two of my friends with their children (Libby's friends) came over and we went as a group. It was a lot of fun and the kids did awesome. They really got into Halloween this year. I dressed up for work, too...four of us were the 'Bad News Prom Queens' and dressed in bad 80's dresses and had makeup running down our faces, torn dresses, messed up hair, and I had a crown on the verge of falling off. They fought me for my crown but I prevailed. I got a snapshot of the four of us together and a photo of myself in my makeshift studio.
Libby is Zoe, Ethan is Elmo, and Jack is a duck.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Newborn Portraits

Today I took newborn portraits of 2 week-old Ember Rose and I thought it went really well. Here are a handfull of them...

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Photos of "The Bump" and a Mostly Complete Zoe

This morning Libby fell in the living room and hit her head on the vaccuum cleaner's cord which was on the hardwood floor. The noise it made was big but the cord-shaped bump was incredible. Of course, once she was over it and proud of her bump, I got her into the chair by the window and got some natural light photos of her...

Before "The Bump" she came out of her bedroom and saw the costume I made for her. She yelled, "Zoe!!!!" and wanted it on right away. Thank God at least she can tell who it is. She may end up being the only one, but she's really the only that matters :) Here she is nearly finished. I have to attach Zoe's blue eyelids and tiara yet. (and this is not the outfit that Libby will be wearing. She'll be in all pink with a tutu and ballerina shoes.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Ballerina Zoe Takes Shape

Libby and her fiancee, Ethan, are dressing in coordinated costumes for Halloween this year. You know....like Sonny and Cher or Monica and Bill.... but the pre-school version. Ethan was dead set on being Elmo. Which meant that Libby had to be Zoe. Take a look at Ballerina Zoe That's good, because Libby is dead set on being a ballerina(Zoe loves to dance and has a kids' exercize video out where she dances with Paula Abdul), and Ethan's dad probably wouldn't be too keen on Ethan going out as a male balerina in tights and ballet shoes :) But I've been at a loss for how to make a Zoe costume. I've only found one online and it is terrible. It's a ballerina costume with a paper hat that looks like Zoe's head. See, take a look for yourself.
I went to the fabric store tonight to get black fabric for a backdrop to my newborn portraits that I do on Sunday and to look for something that would give me an idea of how to make the Zoe costume for Libby... Found some awesome furry yellow/orange fabric, came home, and got out my grandmother's sewing machine. I basically 'slipcovered' (permanently) the hood of one of Libby's sweatshirts and gave the fuzzy yellow hood eyes, a nose, a button closure by the neck, and piggy tails. I haven't had it on her yet (she went to bed before I started it) so I don't know if it fits or looks okay on her, but it looks WAY better than I'd hoped when it's just sitting on the table :) I'll have to take some photos. The thing is, nobody is going to know who she is. She's going to have this fuzzy muppet head and be wearing pink ballerina clothes.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

The Kenyan Midget and Four Miles in a Hotel Room

Today I left work at about noon and headed to the airport to go to Minneapolis for a meeting tomorrow. I checked in, got my boarding passes, went through security (took me a few tries through the gate...all of those knives and weapons....then went to find a seat and get some work done on my laptop while I waited. A guy came in and sat down across from me and I thought that I recognized him, but wasn't sure. I thought he was Jo's brother-in-law but wasn't sure until another stranger went up to him and introduced herself to him, as she works with him sometimes or something. When I heard him talking about his six kids I realized that it was him afterall. Everyone had a good laugh when I jumped in and said, "I know you, too!" He thought it was pretty funny that two random women came up to him in the airport and said that they knew who he was. He and I visited a bit, then boarded our plane (we were both flying through Millwaukee). When we got to Millwaukee we walked to our next gates together and he called his wife (Jo's sister) and said that he had someone for her to say hello to. I jumped on the phone and we had a good laugh. Then I called Jo and did the same to her.
Got out of Milwaukee a bit late, making my arrival in MN later than I'd hoped. I got my luggage and found the taxi area and was told that it would be about a 45.00 ride. But then my day suddenly got a lot more fun. My taxi driver was a Kenyan....how am I supposed to say this these days.....little person. I am fairly certain that I probably misunderstood most of what he said. The long taxi drive with my vertically challenged Kenyan friend went something like this:
Little Kenyan Man (I'll call him LKM from here on out): So where are you from?
Me: Mmm, yeah, I think you're right...that was a dumb sign.
LKM: How long are you here for?
Me: No, I am not rich, but I wouldn't say I'm poor....
LKM: Do you like to watch the Packers?
Me: Of course I like cheese and crackers...I'm from Wisconsin!
LKM: Did you say that your name was Brigett?
Me: Oh...well...I wouldn't call you that, I thought you were just short....

LKM gave me his card and told me to call him tomorrow and he'll come pick me up to bring me back to the airport. I can't wait!

I ran another four miler tonight when I got to the hotel. It went better than last night, by far. But the "fitness center" at this hotel is a hotel room with a few pieces of exercise equipment in it. Two walls are mirrored and the door is glass, otherwise it's the same as my room :) Hillarious.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006


I got my new off camera flash yesterday and it rocks. The difference it makes in my photographs is amazing and it's going to make my newborn portraits soooo much nicer (and easier) this weekend. I'm also looking at getting some very inexpensive lighting that my instructor recommended and will pick up a nice black backdrop on Friday evening. Then I've got my roaming studio all set. I'm super excited about these portraits this weekend. I've been thinking about them and planning them for months now. I want to give them the best photos they could have hoped for and not make them regret not going with a more established photographer. I also want them for my portfolio.
I ran four miles tonight. Man, as Jo and I discussed today, it doesn't take long to lose a lot of fitness. I haven't been able to run consistently for about a month now because of recovering from my race and then fighting this bronchitis thingie. The difference from then to now is huge. I ran a s l o w four miler tonight and it was hard. Much harder than a faster five miler would have been a month ago. Jo ran her first run in a month because of taking a break over Ramadan and she said the same thing. It was hard. We are both ready to get back into some speed training to get a bit faster in the cooler weather.
Last night Chris' mother and aunt came over to celebrate his birthday and I got to test out the flash a little. Here are a couple taken with my flashdillyicious new equipment.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Working, Running, Dental Work and Traveling. My Action Packed Week

I go to Minneapolis this week for a meeting with one of the hospital systems I work with. I leave Wednesday and return late Thursday evening. Before I leave, however, I have a ton of work that needs to get done and very little time to actually do it. So, here I am, at 11 pm, having just finished two and a half hours of work that I brought home to do on my computer. I figure that I'll have just as much to bring home tomorrow night.
I went to the dentist today for a routine cleaning/check up. I had a cavity. My third ever in all of my 33 years. My first real one...the other two were actually just looking like they would turn into cavities, so he did minor fillings. This one required some serious drilling and numbing. Oh man. I got the nummer at 10 am and was still talking like I was 'special' at three o'clock this afternoon. In fact, it still feels a little funny on that side of my mouth.
I'm running tomorrow night, and I don't care what my lungs have to say about it. I will go easy and only run three miles to test the waters. Then I hope to run in the hotel in Minnesota on Thursday morning and again after work on Friday. That would be a good jump back into my running schedule. After that I want to kick it back up a few notches and work on my speed. My next race is the Noodelini 15K (9.3 miles) the Sunday after Thanksgiving and I'd like to PR it.

Big news on the bedtime front. For the last 2 months Libby has been going through a terrible phase with bedtime/sleeping. She has been screaming for 1.5 hours every night before she'll go to sleep. Screaming at the top of her lungs like the Easter Bunny is in her room stabbing Santa Claus with the Tooth Fairy's magic wand. "mommmmmmyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!" "I don't want to go to bedddddddddd!!!!" "I wanna stay uppppppppppp!!" "MOMMMMMMMYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!" Then, after she goes to sleep, she gets up in the middle of the night, doing the same thing....for at least a half hour. Of course she wakes Amelia up during both episodes. It's been horrible and stressful and heartbreaking, and we are SO FREAKING TIRED!!! But tonight she didn't do it!!! Chris turned on her Tinkerbell lamp and that seemed to do it! He said 'good night' and walked out of the room....and there was silence, and there has been ever since. Her room is as bright as the sun, but who cares!!! We'll have to buy some really dim lightbulbs for it. Maybe Tinkerbell really does have magic powers.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

The Most Colorful and Crunchy Cake Ever

Libby decorated Chris' 35th birthday cake...complete with aliens from the gumball machine at the grocery store, sugar soccer balls, sprinkles, and various sports themed crunchy sprinkles
Shhhhhhhh, he hasn't seen it yet....

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Gnomes Gone Wild!!

These bad boy gnomes are tainting the good gnome gname!!!!

These prank-playing, taunting, mocking, renegade gnomes are causing deaths..... or are they being framed, placed in this illegal spot...willing divers to come see....making the world think that the gnomes are responsible????

And then there are sassy gnomes like this little trouble maker... (you have to watch the video of the story)
I just can't understand this young and rebellious gnome generation.

Call the Gnome Tip Line If You Have Information!!

It's a Gnome Tragedy

What is this world coming to????????
Gnome theft is the lowest of low... the dirtiest of all filth... the smarmiest of all that is smarmy. Who would do such a thing?????
This is why my gnomes live inside. (much to the chagrin of my husband)

It's a Girl Party!!!

Chris is in Texas for the weekend for work, so it's a girl party at the Klich house. (Chumley is a boy, but due to his operation 8 years ago and his 'sensitive' nature, he can count as a girl for the sake of the party.
We should be having a birthday party for Chris today. It's his 35th birthday! That is just plain old. Thirty-five. Think back to when you were a teenager....and how old you thought 35 year-olds were. Oh. My. God. They were ancient. Out of style. Dorky. Parents. Boring. Did I mention OLD???? And now I'm married to one. Gross! Like, totally gag me with a spoon.

Libby spent something like an hour and a half in the tub this morning. She was one big wrinkle.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Amelia Started Walking and I'm a Monster!!!!

Monkey started walking!!! She only goes about 5 steps at a time, but she's getting more and more steady and is very proud of herself. I am including a photo :)

I woke up unable to open my left eye. It took about 20 minutes of hot compress, scrubbing, and prying to get it open. Check me out. And this does not show the full level of grotesque-ness. Needless to say the answer to yesterday's question was to stay home today (I couldn't decide to follow doctor's orders and stay home or go in).

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Great American Never-Ending Virus

I'm still sick. It's been two weeks. First a cold, then turned into nasty stomach virus, then back into a cold...then it started to feel better yesterday so I ran for the first time in 1.5 weeks. My legs felt great but I was hurting badly in my lungs. I thought it was just my asthma, so pushed through it as I really needed to run. This morning I was SICK again, worse than ever. I ended up going to the doctor this morning finally because my lungs hurt so badly and I'm coughing, have a terrible sore throat, earaches, and a sinus infection. They put me on antibiotics for a few weeks (extra long course) then I have a CT Scan on my head in three weeks for my sinuses, then back to the ENT guy and then sinus surgery. They sent me home today with a note to stay home through tomorrow. I am stressed about it as today was my 3rd day out for 4th quarter already. Not only does that shoot my bonus down, but I worry that it will hurt my chances for promotion soon. Then I'll be out for at least one week after surgery. But maybe that will be at the start of Q1. I don't know. All I know is that it's reallly chapping my a$$. For several reasons:
1. I'm out of PTO after today...which means if I choose to stay home tomorrow it will not be paid. I do not get more PTO until January 13.
2. I'm worried that this will effect chances for promotion (been hoping that would happen soon)
3. I'll have to take out my nose ring for the surgery and recovery (I'll be packed for a few days) and it will close up. I know it's dumb, but I love my nose ring.
4. I'm sick of being sick. But I've been putting off this surgery for over a year now. They say that I won't get sick nearly as much once I get it done. (I have three major things wrong with my sinuses, including a 50% blocked airway...and the doc says that it will even help my asthma.)
5. I can't run when my lungs don't work or when I'm recovering from surgery...so that means I probably won't run again this week, so I'll only have one in this week again. And there will be a layoff after surgery, too. Just as I was getting faster. Grrrr.

To go to work tomorrow or not to go...that is the question

Monday, October 16, 2006

What Do You Know...I Ran.

I ran tonight for the first time in ages. I had the Half on the 25th, then took a week off to recover while I was in Charlotte for work. Planned on starting back as usual the following week, but after one run I started getting sick and thought it would be best to not push it. Then I just got more and more sick over the next week and didn't run again that week or at all the next (last week). Today I said that I was running no matter how I felt and did it. Just an easy three miler, but it was something. Man, I could tell that I've been ill, though. My lungs were burning and I just felt sluggish. This virus was a doozie. Everyone I know seems to have had it and all of the identical symptoms. Stomach flu, bad sore throat, burning lungs, backache, fever and fatigue. Somehow Chris and Libby have avoided it so far, and Amelia and I have both made it through now. Hopefully it has left our house for good.

I'm loving my new Mac. My new best friend, John, at the computer store has been a huge help. Seriously, if you're going to buy a Mac, make the trip up to Wisconsin and talk with John. He rocks.
I can now send emails and when I use Firefox to view my blog am only missing the top sliver of my head on that photo on top of me on my Pink Daisy. (When I view it using Safari my head is gone from ears up...and when I view it from a PC on Internet Explorer I'm not missing any of my head at all.) Figure that one out and you win the special prize.

Anyone know of a good Photoshop teacher? There aren't any classes available here at the Technical College for a long time and I need help. Soon.

Oh, and Norah, (aka The Bride Who Wore Bowling Shoes) had her baby, Ember Rose, on Friday! That means that I'll be doing some newborn portraits very soon, including some baby in a pumpkin shots like I did of Amelia when she was 3 weeks old.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

I'M ON MY MAC!!!!!!

I'm dying of excitement here...I'm laying on my living room floor typing this post on my Mac with a wireless internet connection!!!!! I love it I love it I love it I love it!!!!!!! I got it yesterday. I have so much to learn. Like why when I look at my blog is my head cut off in the photo of me on Daisy at the top of the page?? When I look at it on my PC that is not the case. And why canI not send emails?
And how fun that my Mac has a camera built in............(here are some from day 1 with the Mac)

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Photos that I can't load into Flickr...I'll post here instead. Na-na-na-booo-boo Flickr.

Baby parts (Bath Night)


I have been trying to log into my Flickr account to load some photos for the last several days. But they did some switch where you have to log in through Yahoo... so it made me make a Yahoo account and log in there. When I do that it makes me merge my flickr and yahoo accounts...and I have to log in to my flickr account to do that...but when I enter my email address to log in to flickr it says that there is no such email address and I can't get in. It says right there that I'm logged in through my yahoo account and it recognizes me but it still won't let me into my flickr page and if I want to get help it asks for my email address which IT STILL SAYS IT DOESN'T RECOGNIZE!!!!!!!!!!! This is chapping my ass, friends.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Oh For The Love Of Pete, Somebody Buy Our House Already!!

Six months of useless, pointless, stressful, depressing, and frustrating showings and bi-weekly open houses later...we still have not sold our house.
Our contract with ReMax ended last week and this week we are listing it with Coldwell Banker, who has a better image and I hope better luck. Our house is warm and cozy and cute and nice...it's perfect for a child-free couple or single parent or single person. We talk about just giving up and staying here, but it's too small for us with two children and two dogs--and it's just so damned depressing to think of giving up on moving into a house that fits us and will continue to fit us long term.
The horrible part of this new listing is that the realtor is convinced that we have to list it for an even lower price. 105,900. That is merely 2,000 more than we bought it for. And with fees and the agent's commission we will end up with a profit of about half of what our down payment was on this house. It's got us at the end of our rope.
This whole thing has been awful.

And I've had the flu. And Amelia had it before me.

so no running to report and none for at least another two days as my photography class is tomorrow night and I wouldn't be up to running yet anyway.

now I'll go whine somewhere else :)

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Amelia's 1st Birthday Party and Baptism

Today was Amelia's first birthday party and baptism. The weather was spectacular, much warmer than what is normal for this time of year in Wisconsin, so we were able to be outside. Amelia got to be baptized in the backyard in beautiful Indian Summer sunshine.
Her Godparents are my sister Melia (1/2 of Amelia's namesake, the other being Chris' grandmother Amelia) and Chris' brother Jeff. You can see them in the photo with Pastor Ruge before the ceremony. Pastor Ruge is the coolest Pastor I've ever met. His sense of humor and fun, along with his warm and gentle heart make him impossible not to love. He married Chris and I, did the funeral for our twins Rainey and Grace, baptized Libby on her first birthday, proceeded over the funeral of my father, and now baptized Monkey. He's been a part of the most heart-wrenching and joyful days of our life.
As is probably clear, we call Amelia 'Monkey', and have since the day she was born...I swear she looked like one of those adorable baby monkeys with the fuzzy red hair and huge eyes... So I made monkey cupcakes and cookies, which were a big hit.
After the ceremony, lunch, and gifts, we carved pumpkins. As it turned out, I could have stopped gutting pumpkins about half way through yesterday...but at least we have a ton of roasted pumpkin seeds, so it wasn't a complete waste (I hollowed out fifteen pumpkins yesterday so they'd be ready to carve).
After the party Libby's fiancee stayed for a few hours to play and by the time he went home Libby was exhausted. This is evident when you look at the photo of her aslee in her new (thanks to Auntie Melia) pricess tiara and veil, clip on earings and necklace...and hip pj ensemble of flip flop satin shorts, striped tights and white t-shirt.
We're all beat, but it was fun.