Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Medieval Times

I've been living for the weekends lately. Work has been hard to get through. Not only is it monotonous, it's also really lonely. I'm not really friends with anyone on my team, and I sit in an isolated spot. So social interaction is rare and far between, and I've been too busy to get up and make any effort to be social. When the weekend rolls around, I've been trying to make an effort to think of something that's fun for Brady and me to do and also be productive at home.

On Friday, Brady and I went on a mini date to dinner at the Cheesecake Factory. These Friday dates have become a tradition with us since we've been good about not eating out during the week. We had fun chatting and decided to go look for new pillows for our living room. We went to Tempe Marketplace and looked at Target, JC Penney's, Pier 1, and Cost Plus, and came up empty. We saw some that were cute, but they were either expensive, or a color that won't go with our red and black couches.

On Saturday we headed to the always awesome Renaissance Festival. We did this because as I was trying to think of something to do, I wanted to do something that Brady had never done. (Brady has done just about everything, so it's difficult to think of new things.) Well hallelujah! Brady had never done the Ren Fest, so it was a perfect time to go. We bought our tickets at Fry's and drove out.
All the rain and spring has brought pretty colors to the desert. The traffic was strangely slow so I took some pictures.Look at how green it is. So pretty.

We got the festival about 30 minutes after it opened. We walked around slowly, looking in at the shops. Brady was amused by it right away, especially by all the people dressed up. We first show we went to was a pirate show. As we were walking in, the girl that's in the show, "Bonnie Lass" asked Brady about his hat, "Are you from Boston? Or do you just have good taste?" Brady said "both". Brady would lie to some else later about something, I don't remember what though. Basically, Brady is a liar at the Ren Fest.

Pirate Show, it was cute and funny.

During the pirate show, the girl pulls out an accordion and asks the audience what it is, Brady yells, "a sqeeze box". Nobody else knew. When the pirate lady finally says, "it's a squeeze box" Brady just yells "YEAH!" really, really loud. It was quite funny, especially since the audience was completely quiet. I couldn't stop laughing.

We got turkey leggs! It was my first time getting one. They were delicious, but too big for me to finish.

We wondered around the shops and realized, if you're not really into the fantasy, medieval stuff, the shops aren't that thrilling. But there was one shop with wooden wind up toys, like cars, boats, and planes. They were really cool.

We went to a show that we had caught the middle of earlier that looked pretty cool. It was a whip master guy that has like 8 world records in whip cracking. It was pretty cool. Before the show started, we sat in the back area and he pointed us out and told us to move to a better seat up front. When we didn't move, he kept telling us that something horrible happens in that exact spot, so we should move. Did I mention that he had his microphone on and all 200 people around heard him lecturing us? We gave in and, laughing, sheepishly moved to a better spot.

The new spot was better.

It was really loud, since the whip breaks the sound barrier and we hear a sonic boom.

Here is the fire whip. I tried getting the first big fire ball it makes, but I missed it. Believe me, it was really cool.

Can't go the Ren Fest without seeing the "Ded Bob Sho"

Right after Ded Bob, we watch the Jousting Tournament. It was the last show we watched before heading home. It got pretty warm and really crowded by then. We did buy delicious candied almonds and grabbed chocolate milkshakes on the way out. It was a lot of fun. Brady said that it wasn't as cheesy as he thought it would be, and would go again.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Nicole and Brady's Day of Fun!

You're supposed to read the title in the Janice voice. You know what I'm talking about.

On Friday night, (after a wedding reception for my old roommate, Julie, and dinner at Ted's with Brian and Cat), Brady and I were talking about dating. Brady asked me about what was it about our first date that got him the 2nd date. Apart from already liking him, I loved that he planned a date with me in mind. I had told him that I've never had sushi, so he took me out to try it. I loved that. So we decided that we should do something else that I hadn't done before. Although I have now shot a gun before, I wanted to try hand guns.

Saturday, we wake up and Brady asked me if we were going to go shooting. I said "heck yeah!" and off we went. We borrowed Brady's parents revolvers and drove up to Ben Avery shooting range. It was really crowded since every Saturday for the past month had been raining, so we had to wait about 20 minutes. The weather was so perfect that day, nice and breezy.

The guns we would shoot. I preferred the larger one. It was easier to use.

Brady was a good teacher and I got the hang of the guns. He just always had to remind me to lean forward since I was standing so straight I would almost be leaning backwards. We had also brought a rifle and this one was fun and really easy to shoot.

See, I would always lean back.

My target is on the left, Brady's on the right.

After about an hour and a half we went out to lunch at Los Olivos and took the guns back to Brady's parents. We cleaned the guns then washed my car.

By the time we got home, we were dead tired. So we watched a movie and relaxed the rest of the day. It was all so wonderful.

Monday, March 8, 2010

My old blog: A reflection.

When I started this blog, I remembered that I once had a blog, but I couldn't remember what the address was or anything about it. I thought maybe, it had been deleted or just plain lost in cyberspace. A couple weeks ago, I get an email from blogger.com asking if I want to claim an old account. I did and it was my old blog.

You know that feeling you get when you find an old journal or diary that you kept in high school and junior high, and you realize that the things you thought were important, were actually ridiculous, and you feel almost embarrassed by what you are reading and really hope that no one ever sees it? Well that's almost what I feel about this, it's quite funny. I started the blog in early 2004 and wrote in it for about 8 months. I was 20 years old when I started it and 21 by the time I stopped writing in it. Boy, was I young and kind of silly.

I 'll tell what was in this blog. It wasn't a daily drone of my everyday life. (At that time, I was working full time, going to school full time, and had no friends except Paula and Evan. Uneventful life.) I used the blog to review movies. I was watching a lot of movies during this time of my life. I was just starting the film program at Scottsdale Community College, and very very excited about it (or it seems from one of my posts.) And I was watching tons of movies throughout the weeks and going to the theater every weekend. I would review those movies I saw in theaters and new movies that I saw that were just released on video.

Sometimes I come across other blogs where the blogger has a post titled "Why I blog", or something like that. Well, I blog now because I just like to blog. I like putting my own stories and experiences up here for my family and friends to see. I also do it so, those friends and family that don't know me very well, can get to know me, even if it's a little thing like knowing that I care about Ethan Hawke's health and that I listen to Lady Gaga. But back then, I blogged because I LOVED movies!

My reviews are a little juvenile. They're only about 5 lines long and basically I just say that I thought is was awesome, or boring, or really funny, whatever. I give a few little reasons, but I was defintely not a writer and film critic, just a fan. When I reread the blog, I discovered things that were surprising about my first impression of some movies, like, I didn't care for the movie "Secret Window" very much. I don't remember being unimpressed. I said in my review that it's a renter and that I won't go out and buy it. But I do own it and I'm pretty sure I bought it the day it came out on dvd. Strange. I thought my review of "The Alamo" was pretty funny. I hated this movie. I gave it 1 1/2 stars "(One for Billy Bob's fiddle, 1/2 as contribution to Texas)". Random. I was really excited for the release of "Troy". I talked about my excitement a few times before it came out. I even gave it 4 out of 5 stars! Note: I really don't think Troy is a 4 star movie. 3, maybe, not 4. I said that I didn't really care for Brad Pitt's character but I did say, "He was very stoic and had nice legs, so that was good". And I ended my review of Troy with the words "Love to Hector". I told you the blog was embarrassing.

I read some of my posts to Brady, and he thought I was crazy! But I was 20 years old at the time, and a different person, so I can see how he would think that. I was social inept at the time. I know, now you want the link, but I think I'll keep this under wraps for now.