Going to Chicago with Vicki was a blast. Our first night we stayed at the Blackstone, a Renaissance Hotel. It has so much history it has been a favorite of movie stars, rock stars, sports legends, royalty and Presidents since 1910. It was restored to its original grandeur, and lucky me got the Presidential Suite. The top floor, with two-story glass ceilings, I laid in bed and watched the clouds. My family room, dinning room and kitchen were only rivaled by the amazing bathroom with a TV in the mirror. Vicki had the bridal suite and it was beautiful too! Her friends and my old boyfriend, Ron Fajerstien, joined us. He brought pictures of his beautiful wife and daughter and he and his brother-in-law went with me to meet Vicki’s crew. A great time was had by all.
It is so fun to catch up with old friends. I lived in downtown Chicago and have such fond memories of Rush Street with my friends Melanie Neal and Stephanie Roberts. I lived in Chicago until I moved to California after I met a wonderful man at the Playboy Mansion in Chicago’s at Playboy'’s 25th Anniversary party.
I have met Tracy, Vicki’s best friend, before — she is one of Vicki’s closest friends. She is great and her husband was such a good sport to put up with us at the pizza place. Jeannie was a doll and I can see why she and Vicki are still close. Vicki loves her life, and boats and I don’t think going out on Lake Michigan would have the same appeal as Lake Havasu. It’s too cold! My bet is she will never leave California.
I loved seeing Kimberley and Travis. Travis is a good athlete and he really likes baseball, so it was fun having him there. Kimberly looked happy and healthy and it was great seeing her again. I hadn’t seen her since Lauri’s magical wedding that I still dream about. I hope I don't forget one detail of it so that I can one day recreate it for Kara!
At the Cougar’s game I think Shane was upset because I brought a camera crew to watch him sit on the bench. Shane doesn’t love the cameras and has a hard time relaxing in front of them. He has been burned by editing and he tries to be all business. The show doesn’t show a centerfielder getting sick on the field and Shane replacing him. The staff, the Jacuzzi at the ballpark — it was an awesome field and everyone was so friendly. Seeing the Kane County Cougars was a great day and even if Shane doesn’t go back there this season, I will remember that trip forever. What you didn’t get to see because of permits was Shane’s team played the night before at Wrigley Field for an exhibition game with 36, 000 fans. I think I met them all too. What an experience for Ryne Sandburg’s team and the Cougars. Shane will always remember his hit in that amazing ballpark. Matt was a Cub and we lived there for a season. So for me it was going back to a place I loved for a season.
Shane has grown up a lot by being away from us. He likes quiet though and dealing with too many of us together drives him crazy. He has spent a lot of time with Lance Sewell’s dad Allan. He lives with them when he is in Arizona. Lance is a pitcher on the Cougars. They are Texas gentlemen and Shane is getting a good dose of it. Allan really is a great dad and Shane has loved his time there. Bella the bulldog has her own special doggy door and loves Francis the giant turtle they have. She loves chasing it anyway.
During the holidays it was great to see Shane and Colton have such a great time together. They worked out together everyday when Shane was home for Christmas. I just saw Colton’s first game of the season and he hit an in-the-park home run! I am convinced all that extra work with dad and Shane over the holidays helped. Colton is getting ready to pitch and play centerfield on varsity this year. It should be a fun season bouncing between the games.
This episode had a fun party at Lynne's with my girlfriend Rebecca Voss, who has my favorite closet to shop from. She has the most amazing dresses, and hats! It is fun to have a friend who has room for a closet filled entirely with party dresses. With real estate being down this year, my shopping budget was 0. Having apartments to pay for Kara in college and Shane out of the house made this the most difficult year for me ever. I am glad to see it end and 2009 should be a wonderful year for all of us.