Monday, November 28, 2005

Lovells of Lake Forest

ToSeek and I went to Lovells of Lake Forest for a classic full service restaurant located in the heart of West Lake Forest. It was fabulous!

"Throughout the French provincial structure, you will find a traditional interior with space artifacts from Captain James Lovell, Jr.

Upon entering the main lobby you are greeted by the mural of the famous "Steeds of Apollo" gifted to Captain Lovell by his friend Tom Hanks. With this beautiful mural as a backdrop, you can enjoy cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while awaiting your table. Dining at the bar is always available."

The meal and service was excellent. ToSeek and I later went down to the bar area. I went over to give my thanks to the Chef, only to learn he was the son of Captain James Lovell. Well, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to sit with the charming man. I believe I stuck my foot in my mouth a few times, but "Junior" was so down to earth that I just didn't care.

Thank you both for a great time in this big old Chicago!

Stay tuned for information about returning to school to obtain my Masters and my trip to St Louis (December 2-4).

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Chicago TARDIS 2005

ChicagoTARDIS 2005
November 25-27, 2005
Wyndham O'Hare, Chicago, Illinois

The sixth year of the Chicago Doctor Who convention sponsored by Alien Entertainment over the US Thanksgiving weekend. Guests include Peter Davison (the Fifth Doctor), Nicola Bryant (Peri), Alan Ruscoe (Slitheen/Auton actor), John Schwab (Bywater in "Dalek"), Siri O'Neal ("UNIT"), Maggie Stables (Evelyn Smythe), artist Chris Achilleos, writer Rob Shearman, and Gary Russell & Jason Haigh-Ellery (Big Finish).

One of my favorite posters from the BAUT is coming to Chicago. ToSeek and I met up last year while he attended the TARDIS 2004. We went for dinner and drinks. It was a great time. I'm hoping to see him again this year. I tried to get some days off around the holiday, but I wasn't very successful. I hope ToSeek doesn't mind staying up late. I'll try to get more photos of the festive encounter. I'll post them to a thread at the BAUT called ToSeek ToChicago. Come and join in on our fun!

Friday, November 11, 2005

What happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas!

Here is my latest quest. I bought my ticket today for TAM4. A thread has been started on JREF for those in attendance, as of today. Another thread has been started on the BAUT. TAM4 will now feature the BA and Astronaut Ed Lu!

The meeting will take place from January 26th-29th. I will be staying at the Stardust. I found a roommate who appears to be quite rounded. No smoking will be the theme this coming New Year, too. I will have more details as the date nearers. I'm looking forward to having a great time in Las Vegas. This will be my first time to the wicked city.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Where's my energy?

It's been since October 30th, and I'm still going strong with not having a cigarette. My problem seems to be that I have no energy. The sleeping pattern is way off. I'm snacking more but eating less.

Last night at work, I had to start taking quick walks around the department. My butt was getting numb from sitting for a lengthy period of time. I'm used to taking a short break every two hours for a smoke.

Perhaps, I will try to make a conscious decision to get up and walk every two hours. May be my mind will start associating the breaks with a walk and not a smoke. I'm still waiting for the irritability to set in as the weeks go past. Oh dear.

Keep wishing me luck!

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

I’ve decided to quit smoking!

This is one of many things I am pursuing to improve my health. I’ve opted to use the NicoDerm CQ program. The program will last for 10 weeks. The NicoDerm CQ is intended to reduce my nicotine withdrawal symptoms.

I’ve been unsuccessful in the past, because I did not follow the program as suggested. I thought I had more willpower to overcome my physical need for nicotine.

There are several warning labels for this product, but the one that sticks out most is to keep the used NicoDerm CQ patches in the child resistant disposal tray provided with the box – safely away from children and pets. I don’t have any children, but I do have a loving cat. I will adhere to this rule in a diligent fashion. I love Fifi too much to make her ill!

This is my sixth attempt, so I know what to expect. Here is my planned progress:

The First Few Days.
I will feel edgy, nervous, and have trouble concentrating. I may experience headaches, dizziness, a little out of sorts, feel sweaty, upset stomach, and trouble sleeping. My morning coughing spell will get worse before it gets better. I will remember that coughing helps clear the tar deposits out of my lungs.

After A Week Or Two.
My smoking urges will lessen. Most nicotine withdrawal symptoms have left my body. I will notice less coughing, better breathing, and an improved sense of taste and smell.

After A Month.
My urge to smoke is a vague memory. I may have the occasional powerful urge as I walk past a group of smokers, and it won’t faze me. I will concentrate on the way non-smokers are more attractive than smokers. I will focus on the fact that I look younger than my age, because I don’t smoke. I will focus on my whiter, cleaner teeth. My breath will be fresher. My hair and clothes smell better. I will focus on my laughter not being interrupted by a coughing attack. I will focus on keeping others around me healthier, too.

I will be successful this time. I have a good support system in my friends and co-workers.

Bad Omen

I have known tmosher for well over a year via the Internet. I recently met him in person over Labor Day weekend while attending the Star Party near Texarkana. I was exhausted from the first day of the trip through to the weekend.

I had left directly from work, flew to Texas, and drove to Arkansas. I hadn’t slept in close to 36 hours by the time my head hit the pillow. I returned to Chicago with strep throat.

The strep throat symptoms were:
1. red and white patches in the throat
2. difficulty swallowing
3. tender or swollen glands (lymph nodes) in the neck
4. red and enlarged tonsils
5. headache
6. lower stomach pain
7. fever
8. general discomfort, uneasiness, or ill feeling
9. loss of appetite and nausea
10. rash

tmosher’s recent visit to Chicago brought on another illness. After dinner on Friday night, I suddenly came down with an allergic reaction from something I ate, drank, or inhaled. I’m not exactly sure how allergies development. I’ve never been allergic to anything before.

My symptoms this time where:
1. Skin - Redness, itching, swelling, rash, or hives (itchy bumps)
2. Lungs - Wheezing, tightness, cough, or shortness of breath
3. Head - Swelling of the face, eyelids, and lips; headache
4. Nose - Stuffy nose, runny nose (clear, thin discharge), sneezing
5. Eyes - Red (bloodshot), itchy, swollen, or watery
6. Stomach - Pain and nausea

I think it’s best to avoid tmosher in the future! Sorry, tmosher, but I have now associated you with feeling ill. ;)