Saturday, August 18, 2007

White Sox Game and Kenny Chesney Concert

Last Friday night, Justin Conklin, a friend of mine from Northwestern and Rohm and Haas, and I went to the White Sox/Seattle Mariners baseball game. We had skybox tickets from one of our vendors. The skyboxes are extremely nice - all of the food and drink you want. They also have a desert cart that comes around about the 6th inning that is out of this world.

The White Sox won big, and Jermaine Dye, a member of the Tinley Park Braves fantasy baseball team went yard, helping his owner rack up some much needed points.

It was also nice hanging out with Justin, who is the Production Manager at our plant in west Chicago and is also at Kellogg with me. He is a really good guy. He and his wife, along with some other couples, went to the Alan Jackson/Brooks & Dunn concert with us in June.

On Saturday, Rachel and I went to the Kenney Chesney concert with some friends. Justin and Emily Hanks hosted a cookout before the concert for us, Emily's sisters and some of their college friends. We had a really good time.

The concert was PACKED!!! It is the first complete sellout of the ampitheater next to our house in the past few years. There was no standing room left. The crowd got so rowdy that they cut off beer sales at 9:00 PM. We stood against a retaining wall. To my right was a trash can. The highlight of my night was when a drunk chick hunkered down and took a leak behind the trash can because the line for the girls' bathroom was too long. Like a gentleman, I blocked access to the other side for her. You can't get that type of entertainment just anywhere.

Rachel is in Nashville this weekend visiting a friend from grad school and meeting her newborn son. She took the camera, so with any luck, you may be treated to a "Rachel blog". Next week. If not, I promise an update after next weekend.

Monday, August 13, 2007

House Hunting In Philadelphia

Rachel and I completed our house-hunting trip to Philadelphia last week. I won't bore you with the details of how everything is over-priced or how we did not yet make an offer on a place. I will, however, share with you another Top 10 list of items said or heard during our house-hunting trip:

10) Why is it that all of these places have different carpet in their hallway and each bedroom, instead of a single type of carpet.
9) Our dining room furniture won't fit in here.
8) "This one is expensive." - Steve "They are all expensive." - Rachel
7) I think old people lived here.
6) How much will these power lines really lower the appreciation of this house?
5) Do you think if we bought this place our dads could help us gut the bathrooms?
4) This place smells like moth balls.
3) I'm sorry... they want how much?
2) Does this place have a gas hook-up for a dryer, cause my boy Bill...
1) Wow, this house is perfect, except for those 2 10,000 gallon oil tanks in the adjacent lot.

Now, your chance to help us choose a place. I will provide a picture and description of each:

House #1

This was the most expensive place (app. 12% more expensive than cheapest option), although it is the largest. It does have gas hook-ups for the dryer (Langston). Hardwood floors and a finished basement and loft (both with bathrooms) are the highlights. It also has dual ovens, which have smitten Rachel. We need to do a little painting and some cabinet door repair in the kitchen. It is a townhome with tennis courts and fitness facility.

House #2
This is the middle-priced option. It is closest to work and to train stations. It's highlight is the outdoor living space - enormous deck with a hot tub (that will have to be replaced) and nice view of a field and woods. The bottom level is open and has hard wood flooring. There is also a smaller finished basement. The kitchen cabinets are a bit outdated. The upstairs will essentially have to be gutted - wallpaper, purple carpet, blue bathroom tile, pink sink/toilet/tub and all. The kicker... it has no gas hook-up for Bill's dryer.

House #3

House #3 is the cheapest. It is also the only house that is really a "house". Rachel and I refer to it as the "hard wood house". The bottom level is entirely hard wood. The seller has put a lot of work into it and repainted all of it and replaced the carpet on the upper level. The basement is not finished, and there is no deck, patio, etc. Steve will have to build one. It is also the farthest from work, requiring a 25 minute drive now. When Steve's job moves downtown, it will require a 10 minute drive and 1 hour train ride. It does have gas hook-up for Bill's dryer.

Cast your vote now. I will reveal the outcome in a future blog.