Saturday, June 30, 2012


I was about to explode at work yesterday It started pouring buckets and the store was practically empty. It's incredibly draining just hanging around, cleaning and re-stocking. Everything goes so much faster when there are customers to help. Finally I asked them to send me home. I can count very few times where I have been this anxious for a weekend to begin!

Today I am still in process of trying not to explode. I tried to sleep as long as possble, knowing every minute I'd be jumping up and down. I managed to occupy myself with a walk to get iced coffee and watching Sherlock in my high waisted shorts.

I took a few days off to celebrate our nation's independence properly with the Viking who will return in T-Minus four hours (eeps!) I will be calling cues at full speed tonight...and sitting in the booth trying not to explode.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Final Countdown

I do not live in the moment...most of the time. It takes a lot for me to stop and think "slow down Kiley, you don't need to do everything at once." Instead, I live my life in a series of countdowns, the most recent were obviously Mom's visit, my birthday. It makes it difficult to want to do anything but wait for my countdown to happen. This is how I explain my absence for the past few days. I am so excited for this weekend I can barely focus!

Running Buddy is moving in for a month long sleepover! It's the final weekend for the original cast of the the show I'm working on, plus the cast party. And of course: Viking will be coming back from Russia with tales of his plundering. I'm taking a couple days off work to make sure I spend adequate time watching movies, eating Ollie's and in general romping around the great state of Illinois with him. Three more days!

Also, here are a few pictures of my birthday morning with Mom. My 24th birthday began with frozen coffee, muffins, and front row seats on Lake Michigan. It was shortly followed by a Target run, nomming of burgers, and getting manicures. Thank you Mom for making my 24th amazing! I miss you already.

Monday, June 25, 2012

24 Before 24 Re-Cap

You will recall back in January I was inspired to create a 24 thing to do before I'm 24 list and I didn't complete near as many as I would have liked. To be fair, I only gave myself 6 months, and I know that some of it is out of my control (can't go on a trip with Viking Boyfriend without him, hard to save up for a dog when you're working minimum wage, etc.)

I'm disappointed that I didn't get some of the easier things done because I just forgot about it! Donating money or time to charity is one, or buying a format for my blog. Some of it also made me realize that I'm not sure if it's what I want to do: grad school? Maybe later, much later. 


2. Buy one investment piece I’ll have forever

5. Dye my hair

6. Buy a new camera

17. Buy my brother a drink on his 21st Birthday

24. Buy a couch

Honorable Mentions:

1. Write a pitch for a travel book - Lots of research!
3. Travel to one place I’ve never been before - Dreams of going to Atlanta this summer: dashed.
4. Fill five notebooks with writing - 2 notebooks should count for something...7. Be happy and self-sufficient with my employment - Self sufficient, sorta. Happy? Eh.
8. Find a work-out regiment that makes me happy - Just picked up running again.
12. Finish reading the books on my shelves - Started a few, no finishers.
16. Start shopping vintage more often - Little bit o' thifting
20. Promote myself without being embarrassed - I can promote myself better; still embarrassed.
21. Use all the old lip glosses in my make-up drawer - Tried sooooo hard! Just too many.
22. Shop my closet and wear all of my clothes. If I don’t, I have to donate it at the end of the season - The biggest problem is having strict uniform rules at both my jobs...not a lot of time to wear what I want.

Epic Fail:

9. Complete a full length play and submit it
10. Save up enough money for a puppy
11. Take an improv class at Second City
13. Go on a trip with Viking Boyfriend
14. Finish making the dress and skirt I started
15. Complete one application to Grad School
18. Buy a great format for my blog
19. Get a credit card
23. Donate money or time to charity

It's inspiring me to roll some of them over on to my 25 before 25 list and come up with a few new ones, plus which I'll have a whole year to complete them next time. I'm very optimistic about my 24th year!

Sunday, June 24, 2012


The lack of posting is due to the sincere awesome-ness that was this week. Mom is in town and we have been partying hard with shopping the Gap sale section and manicures. The cast did it up last night helping me create an impromptu birthday party centered around a pan of cake and a liquor store run. This morning I'm feeling the love...and the vodka. Couldn't have asked for a better way to end my 23rd golden year!

Hope you're enjoying your Sunday!


Thursday, June 21, 2012

Cake Cake Cake

Yesterday I was an unstoppable machine! I think it might have had something to do with the extra hours of sunlight, thank you solstice! I cleaned the kitchen and partook in a brief and humid run with Running Buddy. We had dinner at Potbelly (which was the first place Viking and I ever ate in Chicago when he was doing grad-school visits two years ago) and it was delicious. I came home and cleaned the living room, chatted with E and David for an hour or so, and made a pan of chocolate frosted brownies for work today that I'm sure will be eaten all too quickly. You would be surprised how fast treats go in the health food's like we've never seen chocolate before.

All that's left to do before Mom gets here tomorrow is tidy up and decide what kind of cake Betty Crocker and I want to make for the cast. Many a person has pointed out that the birthday girl/boy isn't supposed to make their own cake, but I really enjoy it! So much so that last year I made two! A Chocolate Peanut Butter Silk Cake for the family and a Lemon Cake with Raspberry Mousse for my actual birthday. Nom nom nom!

This year I've narrowed it down to some easier and less time consuming choices that will hopefully pair well with either Jack Soaked Cherries or Tequila Soaked Watermelon. I am the classiest of broads, I realize. So, here are my choices:

Which cake would you like to see on your Birthday?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


If you will recall, back in winter I posted the five things I looking forward to in Chicago Spring. With only five official days left in Spring, Roommate and I payed a visit to the garden store in Andersonville to pick up an window box herb garden for him and some purdy flowers for myself. I chose Dahlias because I thought they'd get a lot of sun from my "patio" and they are so gosh-darn purdy! Besides which their little care tags said they'd be great for window boxes!

I came home to them the next day thrashing in the wind (didn't take the alley in to consideration) and dry as a bone. Five minutes of Google search proved to me that I was way out of my league. The soil needs to be kept damp but you can't over water them! One thorough watering a week and maybe little watering when it gets hot. Not only that but they're supposed to grow to be three or four feet tall! I crammed three of those suckers in to a planter box and now I'm starting to feel bad for them. I've stunted their growth!

I'm feeling pretty down on myself as a plant-mother, but I'll be even more upset if I kill $27 worth of flowers. I think the answer might be to prune them in to small window box-sized shrubs or move them to bigger pots. But until I make my final call about them...they sure are purdy.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Treat Yo Self 2012

It's my birth week! I don't think I'm being entirely narcissistic (lies) but I'm really excited about this one! My 23rd "Golden Year" is coming to an end and it's the first time I'll celebrate my birthday in a new city. Plus, Mom has a theory about me: the odd years always wind up being really tough and the even years are fantastic. After this weird year I'm ready for things to take a turn for the better, and I obviously need to start storing up energy for my quarter-life crisis, can't wait! (lies again)

So what will I be treating myself to this week? Baking cupcakes for work! Picking up a magazine and a lip gloss at CVS! Another month of working electricity (oh yeah bills)! A day off to spend with Mom! Finishing as much of my 24 Before 24 list as possible! Finding a great birthday outfit! Finally, planning what I'm actually going to do! I don't normally make plans per-say, but this year having a general idea would be swell.

Young lady in a big city for her 24th, what would you do?

Sunday, June 17, 2012


I couldn't be home for father's day so I tried to celebrate the way that I thought he would like: woke up early, got some coffee, went for a jog, and sat around in my underwear drinking root beer and watching westerns. Of course the run got me thinking...

I used to volunteer for the Columbus Marathon with some friends from the cross country team. We were stationed at the finish line giving away space blankets, watching the tired/overjoyed/foaming at the mouth runners cross the finish line and taking fatigued runners to the nursing station. I only had to do this once for a young female runner about the age I am now who was turning pale and the could barely stand. Once I got her in the wheel chair a man chased us down: "Are they getting you help? She needs hydration now! Are you okay?" He was verging on anger when we arrived at the nursing station to find a waiting line "Someone needs to help her NOW!" The girl covered her eyes in embarrassment and cracked a smile. "Don't worry, he's just my Dad."

That moment clicks with me because my dad is the same way. Always cheering me on, telling me to go for what I want, and always making sure I'm okay whether it's something important or trivial. Really, you couldn't ask for a better Dad.

He also introduced me to stuff like from 7:00-9:32!

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday!


Saturday, June 16, 2012

Pasta Dinner

After the tragic loss of my camera's USB cable these pictures have been sitting on my camera for a couple of weeks. I have been digging through my apartment looking for it and finally pronounced it MIA. I moseyed on over to Tar-jay and picked up an SD card reader so I could upload these gems...I thought I had taken WAY more pictures than this, but I suppose not.

This was Bill's second to last day in Chicago before he took off for Russia, and damn, can that man cook! He made Chicken Parmesan and I made Watermelon Caprice, watermelon and mozzarella...I'm a regular Rachel Ray I realize.  

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Apocalyptic Workout

When I buy something I wait for the exact right time to use it. I leave clothes hanging in my closet with their tags on and shoes in their boxes until I find the perfect time to wear them. I will save a bottle of wine for a group of friends and a great redbox rental. Two months ago I bought an iPhone app to motivate me to run, and I waited until the perfect 70 degree Chicago Spring day when pollen was low and the sun was out and Running Buddy was along to encourage me. It was the perfect time for BRAAAAAIIIIINS!.

Photo via Wired

Run, Zombies! does everything a normal running app does: clocks your time, tracks your pace...but motivates you by unleashing the undead to chase you. The story begins with you, code name: Runner 5, crash landing in post apocalyptic UK where it's your mission to collect supplies for a town. The more items you gather by running, the more your town can grow and fight off the zombies. You assign your rescued contraband to build your town the way you want...kind of like Farmville but less lame. I thought this was a pretty basic concept but the plot gets deep, quick. I don't want to give too many spoilers but already I've collected a box from the hospital whose contents could either save us or be rubbish, and learned that your commander at radio control lost the love of his life to the outbreak...she was the last Runner 5.

The app has a mode (I admit I was too afraid to try) where the zombies chase you and if you don't run fast enough it's Mission Fail. ALSO it plays music from a play list that you create so you're not just listening to talking the whole time. I think the game had a sixth sense about songs...there were a lot of "sweat" "keep up the pace" and "run" themed ones in there, and when a Zombie was right on my tail "Close To You" popped up. Weeeeird.

I ran for 30 minutes my first time out of the gate since this winter and I was entranced. I wanted to stop a couple of times but how can you when an entire town is depending on your ability to get contamination control kits from the abandoned hospital basement despite the fact that there are a hoard of zombies waiting for you in the parking lot?! You can't.

Here's the Run, Zombies! Kickstarter video to 'splain a little more for you. I think it definitely made my workout more fun!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Birthday Outfit Trois

Birthday Outfit Idea #3

10 more days! But who's counting? I realize, of course, that this dress is an impossibility, but I liked the idea of being in constant movement throughout the evening just to hear all those sparkly sequins swish around! "Swish! Swish! Swish!" I'm a simple girl, really.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Biker Chic

My affinity for pretty ladies on bikes has been documented here before, but this week in Chicago it's Bike to Work Week! There are all kinds of free giveaways and cool events going on throughout the city just for being a "biker"!  Recently they even shut down Lake Shore Drive just for cyclists! How cool is that? Plus it's a good time to be a biker in Chicago because they're asking for feedback from riders on how to make biking for accessible and safe for everyone. If you're interested they're having a Bike To Work Rally at Daley Plaza on Friday and they're giving away free t-shirts and insight on how the bike paths will change in Chicago in the near future. It's definitely giving me more reasons to start scouting out a bike now!



Monday, June 11, 2012

Shopping Glory

Hello, my name is Kiley, and I am an indecisive shopper.

On any giving shopping trip I either can't make up my mind between two items of clothing or I can't convince myself to buy something that I've tried on three times and might be currently standing in line for. Is it worth it? Should I? Let me text a picture to E! I always try to listen to my mother's words: "Where will you wear it? What will you wear it with?" and that normally gives me a solid-ish answer.

But sometimes I can defy my own hesitations and when I ask: "where will you wear this Kiley?" I respond to myself with a resounding: "EVERYWHERE!" It means I've fallen so deeply and madly in love with this item of clothing that I can whip out my debit card with no internal struggle. They are mine and I am theirs, but today my visceral reactions took a turn out of my comfort zone...

Behold! My new pair of high waisted shorts! Or as I like to call them: My Hipster Soccer Mom Pants!

I fully admit that I did not expect the outpouring of love for these shorts. I picked them up figuring I'd try them on, snap a couple pics and have a laugh, but I tried them on an The staff was kind enough to help me wrestle with the internal life crisis I was having between light and dark wash, but ultimately the dark side won out. Two minutes later I was walking away a happy girl!

I texted the picture to my most trusted advisers: Mom and E who both (surprisingly) echoed my sentiments. I barely got in the door of my apartment before kicking my shoes off and diving in to my shopping bag. The shorts were sported around the apartment for the rest of the lazy afternoon with a crop top and a smile, and again the next day with my neon tank and pastel cardigan. The epitome of a retail happy ending.

I know this wasn't on my list of summer risks, but I'm sure glad I tried it!

Sunday, June 10, 2012


You know when you eat raisin bran and you get down to the bottom of the box and that's where all the raisins are hiding? It's that kind of day. I've been so stressed out for the past two weeks and now, I can finally enjoy my raisins! (If you liked that metaphor please subscribe! If you didn't then don't tell me to my face how bad it was, I'm too proud.)

(I found Wall-E and Eve in sidewalk chalk down the street. I figure an adult must have had a hand in this but it's so darn cute! Eve had the little plant for pete's sake!)
Yesterday I made a couple great shopping conquests which I will share during the week, and today is brunch, performance, and then checking out Midsummer Fest in Andersonville with Roommate. All in all a very satisfactory Sunday.

Hope you're enjoying your Sunday as well!


Friday, June 8, 2012

Girls and Their Dogs




I can't wait to have a dog! Sometimes I wish that my apartment would allow me to have one, but with two jobs back to back almost every day and my long commute...I would never see the poor thing and that wouldn't be fair. So far the plan is to save up enough money and find an apartment with a little stretch of yard and put in the time at an animal shelter waiting for the right puppy-dog. Even now I'm always scouting PAWS and the Franklin County Animal Shelter websites.

Be patient Kiley, be patient...

Thursday, June 7, 2012

A-Z Survey

I can't tell you how much I enjoy e-mail surveys, mostly reading other people's answers. The women of my family are expert e-mail survey takers, always coming up with witty and sarcastic answers. I'll be honest, they're so good I save them. I still have an e-mail survey my Grandma Morgan took when I was still in high school! Let's be honest, how often can you sit down and ask everyone all these random questions?

In any case I had Viking take this A-Z survey with me before he left for Russia. He seemed aprehensive of answering all these questions for me, but once I read it all back he laughed and thought it was "kind cool".

A. Age:
K: 23
B: 24

B. Bed size:
K: Queen
B: Full

C. Chore that you hate:
K: I hate any chore I'm too busy to complete, usually putting laundry away.
B: Dishes, should have said laundry

D. Dogs:
K: Had a Schipperke named Pippen...and I so look forward to having a dog in the near future!
B: Yes please!

E. Essential start to your day:
K: Breakfast and coffee: will not function without these things.
B: Wake up?

F. Favorite color:
K: I always say Green or Pink, lately a lot of turquoise, mint and coral.
B: Blue

G. Gold or Silver:
K: Silver
B: Silver

H. Height:
K: 5'8"
B: 5'10"

I. Instruments you play:
K: Used to play flute and saxophone, would love to learn the banjo or ukulele
B: Guitar, Drums, Base, a little Piano...not a "small piano"

J. Job title:
K: Freelance artist/stage manager/food service/customer service extraordinaire
B: Graduate Assistant, Student

K. Kids:
K: Some day
B: Not yet

L. Live:
K: Chicago, Illinois. North side!
B: Dekalb, IL

M. Mother’s name:
K: Pamela Lee, but you can call her Pam, or Mom.
B: Julie

N. Nicknames:
K: KMo, Kiley-K, Punkin', Whoops-A-Doodle, Copernicus (?), Ki, Ky-wee, Pook-a-saurus-rex
B: Bill. Billy. Billiam. Willy, Commissioner, Flash, (Bill said in any accent), Bubby

O. Overnight hospital stays:
K: Not since I was born (knock on wood)
B: Never, my gallbladder was outpatient

P. Pet peeves:
K: Mostly city customs, like people that stand on the left side of the escalator or people that try and board the L before people have had a chance to get off, rude!
B: Rubbing hands on irrational

Q. Quote from a movie:
K: "The time to make up your mind about people is never" - Tracy Lord, Philadelphia story
B: "He hates the cans!" -The Jerk

R. Right or left handed:
K: Right
B: Right

S. Siblings:
K: One younger brother, Reid
B: One. Tom.

U. Underwear:
K: Lace top bikinis
B: Daily.

V. Vegetable you hate:
K: Iceberg lettuce.
B: I don't hate...raw broccoli? No, that's still pretty good. I like vegetables.

W. What makes you run late:
K: Public transit and poor timing
B: I don't run late...unfortunate circumstances?

X. X-Rays you’ve had:
K: Arm, spine, feet, left hand, collar bone...think I might have had a CAT scan
B: Little toe, gallbladder, teeth, big toe, arm(s), hand(s), skull, I think that's about it.

Y. Yummy food that you make:
K: Cupcakes and quesadillas!
B: All of it.

Z. Zoo animal:
K: Orangutans, Gibbons, Kiwis, Red Pandas
B: I like the tigers, penguins, I really like all of the animals I don't pick favorites! Next question!

Feel free to kill a little time on this lovely Thursday by copying, pasting, and replying in the comments!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Birthday Outfit Deux

Birthday Outfit Idea #2

Lest we forget June is my birth month! I'm already planning what treats to take in to work and the theatre and what kind of things I'd like to do when Mom comes to visit. So far I have drinking, cake-making, and a potential 5k at Pride Fest on the books. Not too shabby, eh? And of course there's the outfit. Still haven't narrowed it down in the slightest. I'm hoping that I'll come across it and be in awe of its style and price...or I'll just pull something out of my closet. Either way you can rest assured that I'll be wearing clothes, which is Viking's favorite answer to give when I ask what I should wear: "How 'bout clothes?" Thanks.

Speaking of clothing, I've been slowly chipping away at my 24 before 24 list and have now decided that most of it is just going to have to roll over on to 25 before 25. To be fair I made this list in January, a mere 5 months away from my birthday so I didn't have the full year. Wah wah wah, I know...

22. Shop my closet and wear all of my clothes. If I don’t, I have to donate it at the end of the season.

When I can't think of anything to do in the evenings and it's too dark for a walk to my favorite lake (Michigan that is) I go through my closet and start trying on clothes. It seems silly to have a whole closet, dresser, and clothing rack full of clothes that I hardly ever wear. My job choices are to blame...the theatre would prefer that I wear all black (which I am getting seriously tired of doing because I'm running out of options here) and food service which requires a very specific type of jeans OR a very specific shade of khaki AND a very specific kind of undershirt. For the most part those rules are flexible but I know I'll be the idiot that messes it up when they do a store report, sporting my orange jeans or some nonsense, which I have!

In any case I've completed closet and clothing rack try-ons, all I need to do is go through my dresser drawers and I'll be able to scratch number 22 off the list! A vaguely productive week indeed!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I've been everywhere...

It's only the beginning of June and I've been bitten by the travel bug. I'll know for sure next week whether or not I'll be able to go to Georgia to visit E, but making my own "Places I've Been" map on has me really itching to go to California or Texas. Apparently I need to spend some more time on the east coast...and some of the states (like Michigan) I've only been to as a baby. It's probably time for a quick road trip up there to see what it's all about.

Personally I blame Mom for this June travel bug. She always planned fun road trips for us as kids, mostly to visit my grandparents in Iowa (which I would also love to do this summer). Once we drove from Ohio to Utah for a family reunion. Another summer we flew out to Arizona to visit Grandma and Grandpa Harig, and for my senior trip we drove to Carolina Beach. Can't forget about good ole' Whiskey Pants and our conquering either!

E might also be to blame for this bug. She's taken me to Canada, planned a spring break to Virginia Beach, and when she went to school in South Carolina we rocked Charleston, which is why Atlanta would be so much fun!

Are you going anywhere exciting this summer? May I please live vicariously through your adventures?

Monday, June 4, 2012

Fisk Day

My mom called me up last Sunday to ask if I wanted to go to a White Sox game. Grandpa would pay for the ticket on one condition...that I get there early and snag him a Carlton Fisk statue that they were handing out to the first 10,000 people or so in the stadium. He even offered to let me bring a friend, then there would be two statues!

After a snafu with the trains not running southbound (what?!) I took the red line to 36th and Sox and walked to the stadium. It's funny the looks you get boarding the red line on the north side wearing a Sox shirt, but as you get closer to the loop you start to pick up more of "your team" and the energy changes. It reminded me so much of game days at Ohio State. As a young'un I was never huge in to sports, but college kind of renewed my sense of team spirit in the Buckeyes, just like going to this game reminded me why I love Chicago to begin with.

I was nervous when I got there because people were walking out of the stadium with the Fisk statues in trash bags! It appeared that they had bought tickets just for the rights to extra statues, but luckily there were plenty left...Grandpa is now the proud owner of two Carlton Fisk bookends. Running Buddy joined up with me and we ate inexpensive stadium food and gabbed in the peanut gallery. We had to leave early so I could make it to my theatre job, but we had an amazing time! We're already making plans to go back when I can stay for the entire game. My north side beginnings be damned, I'm a Sox fan.

Sunday, June 3, 2012


The weekend appears to have gone too quickly for my liking. Yesterday Running Buddy and I went to our first baseball game! White Sox v. Mariners, I'll post some pictures tomorrow. Today is a matinee and some potential apartment cleaning. Also managed to get in some quality facebook chat time with Viking who was going out to dinner just as I was waking up.

All in all the weekends are nice but I'm ready for a real break. Read: time off work when I'm not sick in bed, potentially leaving the city...maybe even the state to see friends and family.

Happy Sunday!


Saturday, June 2, 2012


Unbeknownst to me I have a small readership that extends outside of my family. And here I thought I was just posting pictures and pretend outfits for my mom! A co-worker specifically informed me of his reading it and my knee jerk reaction was: "I am so embarrassed!" But what reason is there to be embarrassed? I obviously post it online for the whole word to see, and when I look at my page views I know it's more than just a couple people...but it seems strange. In any case it made me very aware of the fact that I haven't posted anything about my theatre job in a while, with the exception that we went in to tech a couple weeks ago.

But as it happens, some ridiculousness happened last night that I thought was share-worthy:

Everything seemed to be humming along as usual. As the stage manager I get there first, start up the light and sound board, check props, re-fill antique coke bottles with diet soda. The ASM arrives and we start doing channel check, or checking all the lighting instruments to see if they work:

"Can you bring up 34 again? I can't see it..." Two lights have blown. "Okay, I'll make a note of that, channel 35?" It goes up and the light fizzes out. I call the lighting designer who is working on another show, and then the director who is also busy that evening. Luckily a stage manager from the previous show is in our cast and she scoots up the ladder to see what she can do. Soon after arrives another actor who works for a tech company and he follows suit and starts changing lamps (bulbs are "lamps" in theatre. Do not say bulb to a lighting designer!) 20 minutes and a shower of corrosion later we're showing the understudy how fight call works and everything starts to fall in to place.

Around the second act we have a waiter who comes on with a cocktail made of Hawaiian Punch...I think you know were this is going. Actors collided backstage and the fruit punch ended up all over the waiter's white shirt/black pants combo and the white cloth napkin. Being the consummate professional he went on like nothing happened, but I think it shook everyone a bit. We consoled each other over drinks across the street and are thinking that tomorrow will be more dynamic.