Tuesday, October 1, 2013

the countdown

is on... have printed out my packing list (Phil has actually started his packing) but I like to do mine mentally first and then when I am ready gather all the items in a central location and pack all at once-

frequently people ask how we prepare for these kinds of trips and I always tell them the secret is a packing list- mine has been refined over the years and has the kitchen sink on it (not really- LOL) but then when I pull it together for a particular trip I bring it up on the computer and save it with that trip name and I go through it and eliminate all the things I won't need for this trip I am about to take.

then I print it out and maybe add to it over the next day or so if there are other things that need to be added I can jot them down - so today is gathering day- because I have a number of things to do tomorrow and then tomorrow night the actual packing (done at last minute so the cats don't know we are leaving - LOL)

oh and I guess I should mention we are having Chinese food tonight- headed with friends to Ed's Potsticker the only place I know of in Chicago where you can get Shanghai soup dumplings.

of late people have been asking where we are going in China- and I know you know because I posted a map a bit earlier but for some reason the one thing they always ask is if we are going to the Great Wall.... so I thought I would post a few photos from our first trip to China when we did the entire tourist trail... Beijing, Xian, Chengdu, Lhasa, the Yangtze and the still (at that time) uncovered Three Gorges...along with our first trip to Hong Kong.... we went with a group and the group was so awful that it was more than SEVEN years before I took Phil on another group trip!!! and I still am careful about it....this trip will not be group unless you call Larry, Phil and I "a GROUP" - LOL

a few photos - Beijing up first-

the Great Wall

the overnight train to Xian (wow! - this sure shows how long ago it was- pre digital AND Phil has hair- LOL)

terra cota warriors

on to Chengdu and the panda preserve and breeding center

Tibet -

the river cruise part on the Yangtze-

bright lights - big city- Hong Kong-

and here is something you can't find anymore- a real junk on the water in HKG-

Phil is carrying a computer - and I might be able to post sometime during the trip- so stay tuned...

Sunday, September 29, 2013

friends visit

friends came to visit from Thursday through this morning- so not much posting going on -

we love these friends- they are the kind of friends that are just so easy to be around- we always have lots to talk about- even though we lead very different lives and have very different backgrounds. the time together passes quickly and we are always sorry to part ways. 

we did nothing but sit on the deck and drink wine and go out to eat (except on the Thursday night I cooked a simple meal) - and I think I can speak for all four of us- a great time was had by all...

Friday night we went to Tre Kronor for Swedish food - they have a beautiful new garden area there that is just lovely- a double lot that they have planted well and it full of little white lights along with a lean to style covered eating area that is very Scandinavian looking-

oh and that was after our outing to Frank n Dawg's for lunch where we sat outside in the wonderful weather we had all weekend. 

Saturday we went to Monti's for Philly cheesesteak and then Saturday night to Chez Simo (off it's game a bit) but nothing amazing just spending time together - hanging out.... we did make plans for our next get together at the new place in Florida but I would say that was the sum total of our "accomplishments" this weekend LOL.

good time- good friends.... The brunch dog at Frank n Dawg's that two of us ordered

my salad from Chez Simo- white asparagus/blue cheese/walnuts- the better of my two courses that evening-