Thursday, October 18, 2007

Things I Learned on My Autumnal Vacation

The first thing? Photo booths at wedding receptions are AWESOME. At Kim & Chester's wedding (Congrats by the way!!), they had the booth by, a parcel of silly props, and several hours of booth availability to take fun shots. It was a great diversion for guests and it kept wee ones very busy. Not only that, but the typical party favor of a few Hershey's kisses on a stick is now a very personalized remembrance photo(s) instantly printed out for guests who participate. OH and another brilliant idea? The bride did a "dollar photo session" -- similar to the "dollar dance" where you get one-on-one attention with the bride/groom on the dance floor -- only with this, you pay (ahem...DONATE) to get a photo taken with the bride. FUN stuff! For their money, the bride and groom also get a CD with all of the photos taken at their reception ...and all of the photos are also availble online for all of the guests to see, too. I really can't recommend this idea enough.

Next item -- Minnesota can be WARM in October. I was thinking it would be oh, I dunno, 60ish for highs. Au contraire. 80s! So, there I sat with a huge suitcase full of cool weather clothing and only one short sleeve shirt. Yeah, poor planning on my part.

Next item -- Working in the matter how hard I try...ends up being a LONNNNNG week with very long hours. I worked for half of my time in Minnesota and I was ever so grateful that I planned a week off after HELL week which was filled with training, meetings and many more meetings.

Next item -- Attending a meeting in person became very important due to the unique announcement that started it off. If I had been on the phone listening in, I'm quite sure I would have been saying, "What? What did she say? I really misheard something. Please tell me what she really said..." I know some people from work read this, so I won't be divulging the particular surprise publicly. Trust me when I say it's an amazingly unique announcement. I really feel a lot of sympathy for the couple involved as it's a very complex situation. I hope all turns out well for them.

Next item -- My coffee obsession had me traveling all over small northern and central Minnesota towns in search of a good mocha..."Is there a Starbucks here? A Caribou? A Dunn Brothers? Anyone??" Sadly, in towns under 15,000, trustworthy coffee chains are VERY hard to find.

What was NOT hard to find -- BIG stuff ( Which reminds me I really need to update that site! I've got several entries from the summer contest, several from Kimmy and now several happen-upons from my autumnal tour of small town Minnesota. I "captured" a fish, Robin Hood, a bowling muffler mand as Paul Bunyan and his trusty Babe with bowling pins in its mouth, a deer and a sea serpent --- all without even trying to find 'em. I did see a giant hot dog on a roof, too, but it was raining and we were cranky. That will need to be "captured" another time.

Finally, my hubby can be pretty brave. While traveling into a small town, we noticed that a house was just starting to catch fire and that no one was stopping to even investigate the situation. He turned the car around and parked out front. At this point, he jumped out of the car and was going to make sure no one was stuck inside. I told him to NOT open the front door as that's where most of the smoke was coming out. By the time he got to the front of the house, a cop car pulled up...and immediately following him...a distressed homeowner. She had just gone into town a scant few minutes before this. She shouted out that no one was inside except for her cat. So, Ivan came back to the car unscathed and we watched the firetrucks pull up. It took them quite a while to even get water to the hoses, and by that time, it was looking REALLY bad for the house. The photo shown here is my hubby to the right and the homeowner getting consoled by the police prior to the firetrucks arriving.