Pearls of Pink

How fantastic of an event!  I became affiliated with Pink Ribbon Connection 3 years ago as a volunteer.  I stepped up my commitment to the foundation this year and became a chairman of the Nordstrom Fashion Show, Pearls of Pink.  I wasn’t sure what I was getting into, but I loved every minute of this role.  All of the models are breast cancer survivors or work in the medical profession of supporting breast cancer patients.  It is such a wonderful and moving event.  I held back tears quite a few time during the show.  Every single person that has a role in this experience is extraordinary. 

The Pink Ribbon Connection offers breast cancer support to survivors and families and, also, provides community awareness about this critical disease.  Nordstrom’s flew in representatives from New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago to put on this fundraiser.  I have very little real connection to this cause, but I do get my knack of volunteerism from my lovely mother Carole, who drove down from Fort Wayne with her best friend to support me and my charity.

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Thank you to my Mom and Betty for supporting this event.  A huge thanks to all the volunteers who help put the show on.  And a gigantic appreciation to all those that spent their hard earned money to attend this fashion show and keep raising awareness for breast cancer research.  I will gladly fill this role again next year and look forward to working with so many wonderful people and survivors.  Here’s video of the lovely fashion show and models.

If anyone needs a pink “Lance” type bracelet to support October’s cause, shoot me an email and I’ll get you one.

Burning the Candle at Both Ends

I had a really full weekend and didn’t have time to post my activities individually because I had so many damn activites.  It all started on Friday with a trip to see Kings of Leon.  Some friends and I rented a limo and headed up to Verizon for the show.  Limos are totally the way to go to any concert if you can arrange it.  Not having to worry about driving, parking, lines, is worth the money.  The show was great and it didn’t rain!  Definitely a great way to end an outdoor season of music for me.

Saturday, I woke up bright and early to meet my co-workers downtown to compete in the Corporate Challenge at 8am.  I organized the event for my company this year.  I had to push through my 4 hours of sleep I got, put on a smile, and participate in the 5K run, 1/2 mile run, and cornhole toss.  I did the 5K in 24 minutes and change, then the 1/2 mile in 3:13.  Mmepphh, I’ll take it after the night I had.  Strange to think my best 1/2 mile in high school was basically a minute faster.  I hung out at IUPUI until everyone was done competing and headed home.

Making a responsible decision, I chose not to attend the Notre Dame/Purdue game because I had a volunteer commitment on Sunday that I did not want to miss.  The original plan was to stay the night on campus and live it up like we were still in college.   The game was at 8 pm, so that is a long day and night of partying that could go awry.  However, on my way home from IUPUI, my buddy Jared called and said he was going to the game.  Hmmm.  If I knew that I had a ride back here after the game so I knew I wouldn’t miss my Sunday event…. twist my arm!  I made a few phone calls and had a ticket!  I met Jared at McDonald’s where we fashionably waited for our ride to the game.

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Seeing Notre Dame play has always been a dream of mine.  Rudy was a high school favorite movie of mine.  I dreamt of going to Notre Dame.  My parents offered me one year at Notre Dame or 4 years at a state school.  I think I chose wisely.  So I was very excited to watch my alma mater and my wishful alma mater play in Ross-Ade.  However, the game was unfortunate.  We were in the lead and only needed to hold the Domers for 4 minutes.  We couldn’t do it.  Sara’s expression said it all.

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A good time was still had by all.  Uncle Steve turned 50.

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We got to smash Irishman pinatas.

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And I got to see my old crew from the Deuce.

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Today I attended the Pearls of Pink Model party at Nordstroms. I’m currently volunteering as the Model Chairman for the Pink Ribbon Fall Fashion Show. It’s a wonderful event where all the models are breast cancer survivors or work in the medical profession assisting breast cancer patients. It was the first time we all got to meet each other and hear everyone’s stories. I’m so excited to be part of this event and affiliated with this great organization.  We are down to our last 2 weeks before the big show.  All that I have left to do is find my outfit!

So, this is the first time I’ve sat and rested in the past few days, but it’s short lived.  Off to a cookout for the Colts game!

Happy Birthday Tiki-Man

Mr. Bruce Dawson celebrates his birth today, but we celebrated over the weekend at, where else, the lake.  Most of my friends know I’m a planner and I do greatly appreciate it when we can stick to the plan.  This was not the case for this party.  This “chipmunk” (thanks Carla) had to replan about 27 times.  Which is fine, just took some energy.  As the host, I wanted to make sure everyone had directions, food, a nice bed to sleep in, etc.  In the end, it all worked out fine and I hope everyone had a good time. 

Bruce and I have a Tiki-man language of our own, so the theme of the party was all about the Tiki.  We had stellar luau music, souvenir cups (which I forgot to mention were souvenir, so now I have a shit-ton of tiki cups), tiki ring toss on Bruce’s head, a photo luau booth that had an unfortunate accident with a football, an inflatable 4 foot tiki, and since I couldn’t find the tiki pinata, I opted for a pink and white unicorn.  Seemed perfect for Bruce.

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Here’s a recap of our birthday bash.  My small crew of Bruce, Jake and K went up first Friday afternoon.  A couple of Bruce’s friends and another crew of mine Sara, BA, Ian and Matt followed later that night.  We had a field trip that night into North Webster that provided us great memories to share the next morning.  Saturday brought a few more of Bruce’s friends and some nasty weather.  1/2 of the day was spent inside on a puzzle that we did finish, the other 1/2 outside playing games.  Ian and I made an attempt on the jet skis only to find rain on the other side of the lake that hurt like needles when trying to go through it!  Not a bright idea, but I wanted to get out on the water.  My parents also came up and guess who got fish art for his birthday?!?!  Saturday night, some folks went to the Frog, Lake Wawasee’s finest establishment.  Others stayed home and played games.  I made myself disappear for a few hours to get my peace and quiet at the lake.  Sunday ended up being semi-nice but everyone left pretty early in the morning, so my original Friday crew remained to soak in the rays we could find and take a boat ride.  Shitty weather, but still good times with friends.

Drrrka drrrka Bruce!

Tim and the Tim-ettes

This is a long post.  Lots to show and tell.

My friends and I had been looking forward to this weekend for a LONG time.  I heard about a White Party in Chicago last year.  A DJ from Chicago, Corey Hartmann, puts it on.  Basically, you get dressed up in white attire and spend 3 hours drinking and dancing on a boat on Lake Michigan acting like you are hot shit.  I rounded up 5 girls from Indy that wanted to go, 1 from Texas, and Tim.  He had some other friends that were interested in going, but none panned out, so he was welcome to hang with us. 

We left Indy at 9 am so we could have some free time before the main event.  The weather got better the farther north we went.  It was clear skies by the time we reached Chicago.  Trying to get some culture and not let this weekend just be a booze fest, my car load of people headed over to the Sears Tower, I mean Willis Tower, to take in some views of the city.  It was a 2 hour process to actually get to the top of building but well worth it, in my opinion.  There were some random facts on the walls while we waited… The Bop to the Top record = 13 minutes!  No plans on testing that record!  Once at the top, the visibility was excellent!  I hadn’t been up there since I was a little kid and they had just put some 4 feet deep, 7 feet long glass boxes on the side of the building that you can stand in.  I had to go check this out.  I’ve stood on the glass window a top the Palms at the Ghost bar, but this was going to be so much better.  Not sure everyone else enjoyed it as much as I did, but they let me have my fun!  We know Audrey didn’t like that part!

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We headed back to the hotel for pre game sodas and to get ready.  My co-worker happened to be staying at the Conrad just across the street, so he stopped by too.  He also notified us that our hotel appeared to be on fire.  WTF?!  There were no alarms or anything!  Looks like it was the building right next to ours, but still odd that we weren’t evacuated or notified.  We all got dolled up and hopped on the trolley to Navy Pier to start our adventure. 

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As you got farther down the pier, teams of people dressed in white kept popping up everywhere. 

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We met up with my friend Alisha and her group of girls.  We got checked in and headed to the bar for a drink.  I kept forgetting it was open bar and kept getting my credit card out like it was going to get the bartender’s attention.  I’m an idiot.  The ship was 4 stories tall and pretty spacious even with 400 people on board.  We met up with some more Indy folks, Meg and Jerry on the ship.  We cruised around the lake and also got to watch fireworks from the Venetion festival.  It was awesome! 

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The boat docked back around 11 pm and then we boarded a bunch of school buses to hit the Enclave…where I met Frodo Baggins.  This kid was about boob height and didn’t look a day over 16.  Oh well.  I turned him into my dance partner for the evening.  Whatever.  We all made it home sans strangers by 3 am.   

The morning was spent sharing stories and pictures from the night.  My best friend even used my Mino to get undercover footage of me dancing… by myself… on the boat.  Such a good friend that girl.  The one I wished I had video of… Tim swimming on the hotel floor after knocking over the cooler at 3 am.  One thing we need video of… how did I get a stamp from the Crobar (which is not even remotely close to Enclave) on my hand that none of my friends had?  It is our own Hangover movie moment.  Before we left town, we made a stop at another bar called Bull and Bear.  Tim was super dooper excited to go here.  They have taps at the table and charge you by the ounce.  Tim wanted to stick his head under it, but we managed to convince him not too.  After a few brews, it was a long day and time to head back to Indy.  But since we love Tim so much, we made a special trip to his Grandparent’s house in Merriville.

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Thanks to my babysitters, Frotto, Red Fanny Pack guy!  I had a blast and hope everyone else did too.  Let’s do it again next year!

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View all photos from this event.

Adios Amigos

Well… that’s fitting for one of the three friends that are leaving our fine city of Indianapolis.  Chris, a.k.a. Hoops, is headed to Austin Texas.  My Bop to the Top’ers, Bachelorette buddy, Broadripple friends, Audrey and Kyle are headed back to Jasper.  Boo!  Since I couldn’t make the official “Chris is outta here” party, I made my own!  We had a great mix of friends from both groups of exilers.  Great food, drinks, and company at Broadripple Steak House.

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And since Matt offered to take the picture, here’s one of him too!

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Chris, you know I’ll be down to visit!  Audrey and Kyle… well… ok, only if you buy me a Keith Jackson and a $1 lotto ticket from Jasper.  Will miss you all!!!!

Summer Fun

Time for the lake again!  I had only been home 4 days, but was ready for some more lake action.  We had people coming and going all weekend.  When it was all said and done, we had 21 people come thru the house.  Eph and I headed up Thursday to get ready.  Plus it was America’s birthday, so we got the best flags in the house up. 

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The first wave of friends came up Friday.  Bruce, Jake, Joe, Ben, and Chris.  The usual boat rides and wave runner action ensued.  Here’s me as Captain of the Fuller Formula.  I put Bruce in the back with his timeout belt because he wouldn’t shut up about how bad his “beef curtains” hurt during boat rides.

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We hung out all day then headed over to Lake Syracuse for the fireworks.  They weren’t too bad, but the real show is on Lake Wawasee the following night.  Rumor has it, it’s the 3rd best show in the state.  Unfortunately I didn’t record those, but I did get Syracuse on tape.  We finished our evening with a grand game of poker that I can’t remember who won, but I know it wasn’t me. 

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Saturday brought Rick, Tim, Mitch, Amanda, Kristin, and my parents.  The weather did not want to cooperate with us this day.  Most of us stuck out the drizzle and played Boche or corn hole outside.  A few others decided to attack the 1500 piece puzzle that was inside.  The haze finally wore off towards the end of the day and we had a perfect view of the fireworks from our yard. We ended our night with a stellar game of Apples to Apples. If you are a group of degenerates like us, have a few drinks and play this game. You’ll cry its so funny. Here’s a few pics from the day and a video of our own personal fireworks show. 

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Sunday was the weather we’d all been looking for.  Lots of sunshine and blue skies!  Too bad it wasn’t 1 day earlier but we made the most of it!  Even Mimi, the matriarch of the family and proud owner of the house, made a visit!  Great times and memories!  Thanks for letting us use it, Mimi! 

Ft. Wayne Weekend Celebrations

A friend Andy from high school tied the knot this weekend, so a few of us traveled up north for the big hoopla.  I was on a time crunch after my race, so as an old lady, I wore my hair in rollers as I drove up there then got ready at my parents house. 

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My mom has known the Offerle family for years so she attended the wedding with me.  It was beautiful and quick. Just how a wedding should be!  The reception was at Pine Valley Country Club where I use to work during my summers home from college.  I was a “cart monkey” and got people’s clubs ready and loaded on the cart for their tee time.  I ran into the pro-shop to see what was new… the employees were.  They didn’t look a day over 17.  Oh wait, I was only 18 when I started there.  I felt old.  Went over to the reception where the adults were and got a picture with the groom.

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There were quite a few people there I hadn’t seen since they graduated so it was nice time to do a bit of catching up with some of them.  A few of them were fellow runners too.  One reminded me and his wife of the time I mooned him during a cross country race.  Oops, forgot about that one.  She seemed pretty cool and I reassured her that wouldn’t happen again.  Here are some fellow Saints, Marcus and Chris.

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Sunday was Father’s day, but my father wasn’t feeling the best.  He’s had a cough all week, so he stayed home while Mom and I attended mass at St. Anne’s with my Grandma, Mimi.  Talk about a sight to see.  A retirement home catholic mass.  There were more wheelchairs and walkers than prayer books.  Just FYI – I did take communion and no, my tongue did not burn off.  At the end of mass, my Mom looks at me and says “You can either take the prayer books or grab an old person.”  WTF?  I guess everyone that visits, helps out and wheels the fogies out so they can get back to their respective floors and rooms.  I chose prayer books. 

We got back to my parents to find my Dad already about done with 1 of the 2 books I bought him.  Maybe the second will last until Thursday. We had a nice lunch and then I headed back to Indy.  It was a long weekend, but great memories of it all!

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Happy 10th Wedding Anniversary!

10 years ago today, I was sunning myself on the beautiful beaches of Kauai.  Thanks to my brother and Kim, I got a 7 day trip to Hawaii on my parents dime!  We spent time on Waikiki then headed over to Kauai for the ceremony.  The intensity of the sun is so different.  I was football brown without the football looking skin.  It was awesome!  But eventually my Dad won the tanning contest without even trying.

The point of this post… Happy 10th wedding anniversary Brandon and Kim! You guys have been together much longer than that though. I think in total, you’ve been together for approximately 19 years.  Holy shit. My wish for you… May your love together always be as great as it was when you first felt butterflies for each other!

In case you forgot, here’s what you looked like when your love first started blossoming…

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Kleeman and the BoDeans

My buddy Scott Kleeman turned the big 4-0 this week.  His friends planned a surprise party for him in Broadripple.  In true Jessi fashion, she made Kleeman faces on a stick.  My 30th birthday face on a stick still haunts me to this day, so good luck with that Scott.  They had Scott sit on stage and give him a roast from all of his friends and a special message from his Mom.  It was hilarious and I did catch it on tape.  It’s about 30 minutes long, so be prepared.

I had found out earlier in the day that the BoDeans were playing at the Vogue.  I hadn’t seen the BoDeans for 10 years… WOW… 10 years.  I was in college, and my great friend Bruce Barker surprised me with a road trip to Indy to see them.  His friend and talented musician, Mike Kelsey, was opening up for them.  It was a great time, so I left the birthday bash and headed to the concert for some more memories.  I was a bit late, but I was able to catch their most famous song Closer to Free and my favorite, Naked.  As I observed the crowd, I noticed everyone seemed to be about 15-20 older than me.  Oh well, I danced like a fool and had a great time.  Here’s some video from the concert.  I think I was 3 seconds from getting busted when I put the camera away.  Phew.