Good Friday

Sunday, March 31, 2013

As you can see from the hundreds of photos I'm about to post,
last Friday started out so well for me.
My mom, sister, and I took Knox to the zoo in Omaha.
And just in case you're not familiar with The Henry Doorly Zoo, it's pretty awesome.
I actually think it's the best in the country, but then again I could be a little partial.
But I challenge you to take a stroll through the Lied Jungle and try to tell me otherwise.

More jungle...

And then a quick trip to the aquarium.

Knox was terrified of the sharks.
I was terrified of the goldfish who looked like an angry fifty year old banker.
So I think you can tell I was having a pretty good Good Friday.
That is until I got the airport and things went as following:
Arrive at airport around roughly 12:30.
Board flight at 1:30.
Get told plane has "engine problems" around 2:20.
Proceed to wait on runway...
(with no air conditioning as the first bout of spring sunshine poured through the plastic windows.)
2:50 still waiting on plane.
3:10 about to have a breakdown.
3:15 the baggage gets to leave before the passengers.
3:20 the passengers are told the flight is "officially cancelled."
I don't want to relive what else happened after this because things got a little rough.
Let's just say me and Jana from the ticket counter really got into it,
I had to politely ask her to stop talking to me like I was a five year old!
I finally got on a plane around 7:00 p.m., I was literally the last passenger on board so you can imagine
the fun of that situation.
I landed in Chicago around 8:15, and was on my couch by 9:30.
It was a long painful day that had originally started off so damn good.

 I was most upset I had spent one of the first nice days of the year stuck in an airport.
Luckily, the rest of the weekend turned out pretty nice as well.

I'm not sure if Chris is sitting down in this photo, or if Harlow had just pulled him down...

Here's to hoping more nice weather is on its way.
Happy Monday.


The Longest Airport Day Ever

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Yesterday I finally boarded a plane at 7:00 p.m.,
after having boarded my original flight at 1:30 p.m.,  sat on the plane on the runway for two hours,
and then were finally told we could get off because the flight was officially cancelled.
To say it was a long travel day would be an understatement.
But nobody likes a complainer, I know. (I'll leave the story for tomorrow)
Until then,
 the girl taking over my blog for the day is one of the most cheerful, optimistic blogger's out there.
I'm talking about Deidre from Love, The Skinnys

1. Describe your blog in three words.
Super Sassylicious Newlyweds? or.... Two Crazy Kids

2. Your husband is a baseball player and I know the season is just starting, 
what does this mean for you?
It means a lot of baseball games online and in person. If Adam is away my weekends are spent at home or at one of the other wives' houses with the game tracker open so we can always see the score. If Adam is home my weekends are spent at the baseball field watching games. It also means a lot of stress when Adam pitches because he makes me so nervous!

3. Where do you see you and your husband in five years?
Ideally I would be a stay at home Mom by then. Adam would be pitching for a MLB team. I would be planning event on the side for fun, just because I love it and I hate working. We will have our first home and live somewhere that winter takes only 3 months, as the season was designed... no more of this winter from October-April stuff. We will be busy, we will be laughing, and we will still be supporting each other.

4. Tell us how will you will be celebrating Easter tomorrow.
First I will celebrate by waking up at 4 or 5 AM to drive back to UT from ID after doing stuff for Miss Idaho the day before. After that Adam and I will see what the Easter bunny brought us, go to church, and enjoy a day of relaxation and snuggling.

5. What are you most looking forward to about summer?
Besides spending more time outside and watching more baseball... I am looking forward to sun, mini golf, and more Raspberry Peach Lemonades at sonic during Happy Hour. The simple pleasures or a working girl's summer.


The Daily Tay's Best Week Ever

Friday, March 29, 2013

Well my party people, another Friday has graced us with its presence yet again.
Today also happens to be the last Friday in March.
Hello, April!

I haven't got much time for small talk because I'm about to get on a plane back to the Windy City,
so let's just swap business cards and get into it already.
It's time for another edition of
The Daily Tay's Best Week Ever.

First up I've gotta give a shout out to the world's most beloved meme right now
The Marriage Equality Image.

This image is so hot right now, and I hope it stays this way.
I can't help but wonder how any important act got passed pre Facebook/Twitter/Instagram.
But I think it's great.
Social media keeps us informed, keeps us on our feet,
and keeps our productivity levels at an all time low.

Switching gears a bit, the next thing on my list having a great week are

And I'm not just talking about Easter eggs.
I'm talking about deviled eggs, and egg salad, and pickled eggs, and every other way eggs are being
used this weekend.
But here's what I've never understood, why is it an "Easter Bunny" who apparently hides the eggs
for kids to find?
Last I checked, bunnies don't lay eggs.
So it seems like kind of a twisted ritual if you ask me.
Then again, I think if it was an Easter Chicken who hid baby bunnies we were supposed to "hunt" we'd all be a little more hesitant to join, don't you think?
"Look Ma! This bunny has a nickel inside!... And a.... bullet?"

Too much?
I thought so too. Let's lighten things up with the mention of the
Chicago Bulls!

Wednesday night, the Bulls ended Miami Heat's twenty seven game winning streak.
Thus causing Lebron's headband to raise half an inch, earlier than predicted.
Every time a bell rings, Lebron's headband get its wings...

Just kidding I love you, Lebrony!
Just kidding, I don't.

Speaking of Lebron, the next people on my list having the best week ever are
Over Protective Mothers.

A school district in New Hampshire just announced they are BANNING dodgeball
because it "encourages bullying and violence."
Good idea, I say!
Let's ban all sports and instead encourage children to get their physical activity
via sweating it out while playing Kill Everyone video games
and getting into cyber wars with each other on social media.
Sounds good to me!
God knows I wasn't the best dodgeball player in the land growing up.
I couldn't throw the ball to save my life, I bruised easily, and I was just overall too jumpy
 to catch anything tossed my way.
But damn it, it taught me cat like reflexes and how to duck when something is thrown at my head.
Dodgeball is hard, but life is harder.
It's a travesty to get rid of this sport if you ask me. Kids are growing up weaker by the day.
Then again I know I'm a bit old school and think kids need to fall down every once awhile
so they can learn to pick themselves back up.

I'm going to wrap it up right here.
Today's post is dedicated to Don Payne,
 one of the main writers and producers on The Simpsons who passed away this week.
The impression this show made on my childhood is unmeasurable.
Early on, my mom tried to pretend like I couldn't watch it,
but she eventually realized it was a fight not worth fighting.
We raise our Duffs in honor of you tonight, Mr. Payne.

Happy weekend, friends. Do something fun and make it a good one.

And follow along as I take photos of the first nice weekend here in Chicago
via Instagram @taylorgracewolfe.


Last Call

Thursday, March 28, 2013

I sometimes wonder why it takes a death to reunite a family.
But then I remember life gets in the way and most often you just can't help it.

Like I mentioned, I came back to Nebraska this week because my step-grandpa
passed away last Saturday.
He had been suffering from Parkinsons for quite a while and was to that point where
everyone said "it was his time to go."
It was his time to go. 
As if he was at a sleepover that had ended.
We've all said it, but the more I thought of that phrase it just started to sound kind of weird to me.
I don't want people to say this about me.
I think I'd prefer "she decided she was over it" or "it was just her last call."

Even if it took a death to reunite the cousins and aunts and uncles,
we still managed to make the most of it.

If you'd like to know why I have the sense of humor that I do,
come hang out with my family and me as we throw back a few drinks.
We basically spend the entire night telling stories and ragging on each other.
So if you're easily offended, or haven't acquired a thick skin in life, you might want to stay away.
We can get pretty brutal on each other.

So even though funerals kinda suck,
I feel like they give families a reason to walk down memory lane
and share memories that haven't been heard before.

My dad in the red, his older brother Bill, and his younger brother, Pat.
Warren, the man in the middle, is the grandpa I never met who passed away when my dad
was just in his early twenties.

I love this photo. I just think it's hilarious.
I wonder what made my dad laugh so hard?
And better yet why is he wearing a muscle tank with jeans?
Why does it look like my uncle Pat curled his bangs under?
And that mustache on my uncle Bill is just classic.
What I wouldn't give to have lived in the 70s...

Anywho, I'm supposed to be watching Knox right now while Jade runs a few errands.
I left him in the living room with a book a matches.
The kid loves them.
We've been lighting and blowing out candles for the last thirty minutes.
Who needs Sesame Street when you've got fire.

Happy Thursday, make the most of it.


I Heart Flying

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Oh the joys of flying.
No matter how hard I try not to be OCD and arrive at the airport just an hour early,
I can't do it.
Today I "accidentally" arrived at 6:50 a.m. for an 8:35 a.m. flight.
There's just no need for that.
But in my compulsive mind I planned for traffic
(there wasn't any)
long spring break lines
(again, nothing)
and anything else in between
(my cab picked me up at 6:20 and I was through security by 6:52 a.m.)
Thirty-two minutes from house to terminal, that's just unheard of my friends.

So as I sat and people watched I came to the conclusion of a few things.
Like for instance I think we can all agree that perhaps
our world just wasn't quite ready for moving sidewalks.
Little kids are scared to get on them, old people are scared to get off of them,
 and foreigners seem to act like it's a magic carpet ride.
Perhaps in the future we can all get the hang of them,
 but like round-about-intersections in Norfolk a small town,
they just prove to be a little too confusing for some people right now.
I think they're just a bit too advanced.
I mean some of us are still trying to adjust to the escalator.
I stepped onto an escalator the other day that wasn't working and I acted as if I didn't know how to walk.
It was the strangest thing. I just stood there for a good second thinking
what on earth do I do next?

And then let's talk about Southwest Airlines.
Does anybody really get an "A" these days without pre paying for it?
I don't think so.
I "checked in" right at my flight time and received a
"sorry, play again next time."
And then they've got that whole "family pre boarding" thing in between the A's and B's.
Which I happen to think is a real injustice to single folk like myself.
Why do you get to board before me just because you've chosen to have kids?
Moms, serious question- wouldn't you like the chance to sit away from your kids for an hour or two?
I can't help but think when I'm a mom (maybe someday way off in the future) I'd be thrilled
to hear that me and my screaming baby couldn't sit together.
I joke, I joke! I get that young families want to sit together.
But what I don't get is when "family boarding" is called, and suddenly Duggar: Party of 22
 starts walking onboard.
And seven of the "kids" seem to have Jack disease because they're growing facial hair.
What's that all about?

Again, sorry for the sass. Airports bring out the worst in me.
Especially when I happen to pick the seat next to Dean Ziegler.
And if you don't know who Dean Ziegler is we might have to call it quits right here.
Ziegler is an insurance sales rep as played by John C. Reilly in Cedar Rapids.
I kid you not, I was seated in between the two most obnoxious 1990ish sales men I've ever met.
They consistently slapped each others back, wheeze-laughed like they regularly smoke a pack a day,
and said things like "fun bags" and "happy hour 101."
I was embarrassed for them.
But if anyone in Omaha is looking for some "fun guys" to drink with after work,
they're staying at the Holiday Inn, room 910 until Thursday.
Bring your rape whistle.

Well guys I gotta go, I see the lovely flight attendant coming around with her basket of treats.

Airplanes: the only place left in America where people are still happy 
to receive a small handful of peanuts.

Peanuts: the official sponsor of hitting rock bottom.

Jk. I love peanuts.


Summer Thoughts

Monday, March 25, 2013

Another Monday is down in the books.
I feel like Chicago got super lucky because we somehow managed to skirt the snow that 
was predicted to drop on us.
It wasn't going to be much, but at the end of March any snowflake falling from the sky is one too many,
if you ask me.
You hear that Whoville? Stay the hell away!

I put on heels (as opposed to boots) for the first time in about fifty five months this weekend
and Chris looked at me and said,
"you look really nice, is that a new outfit?"
No Chris, you have just been seeing me in the same brown boots and baggy sweaters all. year. long.
And it needs to stop.
I am just so ready to take all of my boots and pack them away into their winter box for good.
The idea of being able to go outside without 100 layers on literally feels like a dream.
I know it's possible, but it just doesn't seem real to me at the moment.
Anyone else feeling this way?

 I also happen to be making an unexpected trip to Nebraska tomorrow morning on account of a funeral.
So while it's not the best reason to go home, it will be nice to be back for a bit.
I haven't been home since Christmas, this is definitely the longest I have gone.
I guess I'm finally growing up... Or just too broke to go back as often. 

I was home right around this time last year as well, and was able to do some egg decorating 
with Mr. Knox.

His decorating skills were less than par. But that's okay, my family's never been extremely talented in
the art department.
What I wasn't okay with however, was his egg hunting skills.
I don't believe he even placed in the top twenty at 
The 97th annual Norfolk Country Club Easter Egg Hunt.
My sister Jade, as you can see below, came in 7th so that was nice for her.

But this is a title I owned from the minute I could crawl. 
So I'm really hoping to work with him this year to take the gold and restore the family name.
Afterall, second place is the first loser- Abby Lee.

Well I've got to finish packing and also get ready for my class tonight at Improv Olympic,
which the cool kids just call IO. 
Or I guess everyone calls it that now since it's been officially renamed.
I probably sound like my mom calling The Buckle, The Brass Buckle, 
so from here on out we're calling it IO and that's it.

Since I'm short on time today I'm going to leave you all with happy summer thoughts thanks to 
Katie and Ashley sharing a few of their favorite vacation memories.

Best Vacation By:

My favorite vacation was my honeymoon to Hawaii, which was almost 8 years ago.  Yes I got married when I was practically a child at age 20.  Which is probably why it was my favorite vacation.  It was the first beach vacation I had been on, first trip with my husband and was just about free thanks to wedding gifts from his family.  We snorkeled next to huge sea turtles, spent hours on the beach, and I decided sushi was my favorite food.  It was wonderful! 

Best Vacation By:
Ashley from Dancing With Ashley

I absolutely loved when my husband, Noel and I went down to Charleston, SC.  
It's the best city in the world, hands down.  We had just lost a baby, and the trip was exactly what we needed to lift our spirits.  The weather was perfect, the food was amazing, and I'll always remember Charleston as being the place that gave me the boost I needed to start over.


I'm a fan of the both of these blogs, so if you're not already following,
do yourself a favor and start today!

Chicago Food Edition

Sunday, March 24, 2013

There is a lot of really good eating to be done in Chicago.
And that's just one of the reasons why I love having guests in town,
because we always make sure to take full advantage of it.
As I mentioned before, Chris's parents and grandparents came to the city this past weekend
to celebrate the birthdays of his mom, grandma, and sister,
as well as to watch his older sister, Ashley, compete in her Special Olympics swim meet.
So we had a lot of celebrating to do, obviously.

And about that hair cut/color on Friday...
I don't hate it, but I'm not over the moon about it either.
I always come out of the salon thinking I was charged too much,
and they took off more hair than I asked for.
What's that all about?
I suppose if this is the worst of my problems I'm doing okay in life.

But enough about my long hair/don't care, let's talk about the food.
Because we ate a lot of good stuff this weekend.
I often get emails from you lovely readers telling me you are coming to Chicago,
and then asking where you should eat.
So here's a just few options I'd recommend based on where we ate over the past few days...
Take some notes.

Friday night we went to Carmines.

Where: Downtown, more specifically Viagra Triangle.
What: Italian.
My thoughts: Sure, it's a bit of a tourist trap, but I don't care I still like it.
I like the ambiance, and I love the calamari.
It's a great spot if you're in town just for the weekend.

However.... if you're visiting Chicago and are more into restaurants off the beaten path,
head to Rose Angelis in Lincoln Park.
You will not be disappointed.

Saturday night was spent at  Zed 451.

Where: Downtown.
What: everything... mostly meat.
My thoughts: Whoa. I'm still trying to figure out what to say about this place to be quite honest.
Before your "main course" you grab a plate and walk through their "sampling stations."
In Nebraska, we call this a buffet.

But at Zed 451, they call it "sampling" to make it sound less white trash I assume.
But this place was anything but white trash.
So call it whatever you'd like, it was delicious.
Here's my first plate-

As you can see it's a lot of cured meats, cheese, and tapenade.
I was in heaven. Except for the whole having to wait in the buffet line to get it.
I hate buffets because I get super competitive.
I don't care how much you convince me there's enough food to go around,
I still get nervous it's going to run out.
After we were finished "sampling," the chefs then started coming around to our table with various
meat and fish entrees.

We'd basically tell them what we wanted, and then they'd cut us a fresh piece right onto our plate.
It was a great way to try a lot of different meats, I think Chris tried at least ten.
I had less than five, but only because I continued to head back to the buffet line for more square cut cheeses.
I hate buffets, but I also love them so much...
For Sunday morning brunch we kept it classic at Dunlays on Clark.
Where: Lincoln Park.
What: Everything.
My thoughts: This has been our go to from the minute we moved to Chicago.
For starters, they have really great bloodys that are served with a little Miller High Life.
Anything miniature sized is always a hit with me.

I was feeling more lunch today rather than brunch so I went with the Club.
I'm a huge Club kinda gal.
I think club sandwiches are a lot like bloody marys in that it's so easy to get them right,
and yet so easy to screw them up, as well.
Luckily, Dunlays never lets me down.

Sick of food pics yet?
Hold tight, we've just got one more restaurant to visit.
I'm talking about Hugo's Frog Bar.

Where: Downtown/Viagra Triangle.
What: Seafood and steak.
My thoughts: I like the dark wood, the big booths,
and the fact they served my Matilda in a wine glass.

We ordered a plethora of stuff tonight,
everything from oysters, to clam chowder, french fries, and crab cakes.

It was a thoroughly great weekend.
And now I'm exhausted because I'm on food overload. I don't plan on eating for a long time.
At least until tomorrow morning....

And on that note, I'm out.
Have a great Monday.


Food Hangover

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Happy Saturday friends!
I woke up a bit food-hungover today on account of the ten pounds of pasta and calamari I ate last night.
Chris's family is in town so we all went to Carmines yesterday to celebrate the birthdays
of his mom, sister, and grandma.

I'll talk more about that tomorrow,
in the meantime, I'm off to find myself a greasy breakfast sandwich...
And maybe some hash browns.
And probably a bloody mary.

Today's Saturday Takeover is one of my favorite people in blogland.

She is incredibly stylish, gorgeous, and has an absolute heart of gold.
And I also really like that Brie and I share the same love for throwback photos.
So if you're not already following her at Sophistifunk I highly recommend you do so.
Without further ado, meet Brie.

1. We've obviously been blog buddies for awhile and I've been reading your blog for sometime, 
but one thing I've never asked is how you came up with the name Sophistifunk? 

I'm quite frankly a little bit embarrassed about how long it took me to come up with a blog name. 
I've been reading blogs forever and always knew I wanted to start one but wanted to come up with 
the perfect name. By no means am I sophisticated in the slightest, 
but I've always tended to dress on the girlie/conservative side. 
However, I also often gravitate towards bright colors, or funky patterns. 
Hence, Sophistifunk.

2. You have such great style, what are some of your favorite places to shop?

First off, thank you! One of the biggest things I've learned when it comes to style is to invest in key pieces. I love Lucky Brand, Joe's Jeans, and Paige Denim for a great pair of jeans that will last for years. I'm really big into accessories (purses are my weakness) and love Marc by Marc Jacobs and Milly. Forever 21, Francesca's Collections, Cotton On, and HM are my favorites for tops and dresses. Oh, and I can't forget good old TJ Maxx and Marshalls!

3. Any spring/summer items you are really excited about this season?

 I am loving the ankle strap heels trend! I also love pastels and get so excited to brighten up my wardrobe for Spring.

4. Tell me a little about your jewelry shop, what inspired you to start this?

I've made jewelry for a long time and wanted to incorporate something I love (jewelry, duh) and something I'm passionate about (finding a cure for cancer). I lost my dad to Stage 4 Lung Cancer last January when he was 45 years old. He was a healthy, non-smoker, and the world's best dad to me and my siblings, including a one and six year old. Shortly after my dad was diagnosed, I came in contact with Maya Thompson who blogs at Rockstar Ronan. She's seriously the sweetest, most kind-hearted person ever, go read her blog. Like, yesterday. I was so inspired by her and knew that I had to do something to help the children affected by cancer. I knew that if my dad were still alive, he would never want a child to have to go through what he went through. I vowed to do my part in finding a cure for this terrible disease and currently donate 10% of the proceeds from my shop to the Ronan Thompson Foundation.

5. If you could meet one celebrity, who would it be?

Liam Neeson. So he could whisper in my ear, "I don't know who you are. I don't know what you want. If you are looking for ransom, I can tell you I don't have money. But what I do have are a very particular set of skills; skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you. If you let my daughter go now, that'll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you. But if you don't, I will look for you, I will find you, and I will kill you." To which I'd respond, "Good Luck." Any other Liam Neeson fans out there??

YES! I love Liam. - Taylor