Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Good morning!  Man, am I strugglin' ta-day!  I think I've fallen asleep about 6 times so far this morning, each time for under 5 minutes, each time, waking up startled and terrified.  Oh, I just LOVE adjusting back to overnights! :)



NOT.



I'm challenging myself to see how fast I can bust out of work, drive home, let the dog out, wash my face, brush my teeth and be under the covers.  I'm aiming for 30 minutes - watch me!



Thoughts so far today:



I want this guy's job.



And I want more than anything to listen to this new public radio show - but I keep forgetting. I loved John Hockenberry back in his Dateline days when I was in high school!



We're not in a recession, woo hoo. 0.6 percent? Seriously, I'm glad my growth isn't measured that closely.  Gosh.



30 minutes, hear me?  30 minutes from the time I leave this building, I will be under the covers.  Mark my word.



Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Weekend in Pictures

As promised, pictures from my first trip to Arkansas.  I learned it's called the "Natural State," and from what I've seen, it's beautiful!  Mountains of green that go on and on forever.  An awesome thunderstorm that lit up the sky like a slow motion strobe light, clearing for the moon to backlight the clouds over the lake.  The whole thing was just breathtaking.  I am blessed.  So blessed.  Full disclosure: I'm falling more in love, and it's amazing. I have to just throw that out there... because I think it's pretty obvious in the pictures anyway!  (and please don't mind the same captions I used on Facebook, I only have so much creative juice, people, these multiple online platforms are stretching that a little thin!) Img_0824



I love that my man is the guy who remembers to pack candles!



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Coffee, check.



Candles, check.



Smiles, you bet!Img_0833



Breakfast time right outside our window.Img_0847



We can't help ourselves.



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We took a little stroll ...



it was a beautiful morning!



Img_0854



Postcard perfect.



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We took it all in.



It's so easy to slow down and just breathe out here!Img_0855



This is the lodge where we stayed at Lake DeGray.



It was just right.  Everything.



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It's a LONG way outside the Beltway!



I felt kind of "city mouse," but I liked it!



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Party time!  It was Michael's Papa's 80th birthday.



Look at that baby picture!  It's a boy! :)



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Harry's fans made these posters.



Adorable? Check.



Img_0863 So, Michael is clearly my counterpart in his family.



The video maker.



And it was quite a hit.  I enjoyed sitting back watching his family watch the video, laughing, pointing, remembering things and sharing stories.



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Best seat in the house.  Hands down.



Don't be jeal.



Img_0880 Papa cleaned up in the gift department...



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Lots of great stuff!Img_0887



... a matchbox car that sent an 80 year old man to his knees to play...



It got me to thinking... I don't think these Ritter boys ever really fully grow up!



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Further confirmation of the above statement...



This is Michael's dad, Buddy, joyfully planting one on Michael's mom, LaDonna.



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How great is that? Seriously.



Love it.



Img_0886This is Papa's girlfriend, Miss Jean.  Yes, I said girlfriend.  I told you, they don't grow up!



Isn't that precious!?



He told me he has been fortunate to have loved twice, he has a great family and he's had at least a dozen birthday parties.



He told me he's a very blessed man.



I don't doubt that one ounce.



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Strong genes.. in so many ways.



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I felt right at home.  They all welcomed me like I was family.



It was an honor to be a part of the special day.



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LOL.  This was a note from Miss Jean's grandson.



Punk is a term of endearment.



Ha!



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Next up... The Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock, Arkansas.



I was soooooo geeked out.



I'd never been to a Presidential Library before!Img_0894



I couldn't have asked for better company.



I have met my match.  I don't know anyone else on earth who could have stomached my Presidential geeked-outness.



(well, maybe Gretchen)



Check it out - a mini White House!



I want my kid to have this for a doll house some day, ha!



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It has a mini Oval Office!



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And even a mini Press Briefing Room!



I wanted to shrink down and hang out in there!



I could ask mini questions and everything!



Img_0892_3Okay, we're back in real-life size mode again...



This was President Clinton's limo from his motorcade!



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What a metaphor!



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Boy George!



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This was a few Miller Lite's ago...



Man, she can throw 'em back, eh?



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This lady didn't do such a good job of ducking the sniper fire in Bosnia.



Oops.



I know, that's so wrong.. but it's still funny.



Shoot me.  Wait.  No, don't.  Please.



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LaDonna making a very important decision in the Cabinet Room.



Did you know the President's chair (left side of the pic) is two inches taller than everyone else's?



Me either.  I thought that was cool.



Img_0907This is a copy of a State of the Union Address. 



Not just a copy, but President Clinton's copy, complete with his personal notes!



Seriously.



Geeked out.  We spent so much time taking all of this stuff in that we never even made it to the 3rd floor.



We closed down the Presidential Library!



Top that.Img_0836



I saved the best for last, you see.



Mmmmmm.



"You’re the only one that knows me,
Love it when you hold me,
Never find a love like this."



Monday, April 28, 2008

I'm baaaack.

Hello, world!  I am back.  Back to DC.  Back on overnights.  I'm making a concerted effort NOT to complain, so if you catch me doing so, please call me out!  Soon, the pool will be open.  I see that as the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel for now.



Some thoughts as I ease back into my little world... What in the twitter?  I'm still a bit mystified about what exactly this activity is, but I see that many of my friends have been twittering, there was apparently some twittering going on at the White House Correspondents' Dinner over the weekend and Penelope Trunk is into it.  Is this the next train I'll be catching?  We'll see.



I am also reminded, as I catch up on my favorite blogs, of how much I adore Brian Williams' "Daily Nightly."  Check it out.  I love the title.  I love the commentary.  He's so great.  I want a lunch date.



Speaking of dates, I had an amazing weekend with a man that I am just continuing to fall for.  I hate that it's over and now I'm back at an office in Downtown DC at 3:00 in the morning, writing about oil prices and interest rate cuts.  But I'm not complaining :)



Standby for pictures. 



Thursday, April 24, 2008

Countdown

I am so counting down to this weekend... this day is just DRAGGING by.  Ugh!



I can tell tourist season is heating up in DC.  The metro was filled with people with fanny packs and camera cases and confused looks on faces.  I always feel super cool and urban when I can help a family get on the right train.



I just watched President Bush try to honk this horn to start a ride at the White House for some Wounded Warriors and the horn didn't work... then Bush just kind of looked at it like, "What's wrong with you?" Haha



Andrea Mitchell was on Nightly last night and she was back on Morning Joe this morning, I'm telling you - she's freaking amazing.  I must have lunch with her before I die.  That's definitely going on my list.



Today I wore a dress for the first time of the season.  I hope I don't get a ticket for having pasty white legs.  I am really wishing now that I had been tanning for the past few days... oh well, too late now.



I cannot wait to see this boy:6a00d8341cae6553ef00e54f3229e988348



There are approximately...



2 hours until I get off of work.



16 hours until I get on a plane.



21 hours until I see him!!



tick tock...



Wednesday, April 23, 2008

All Star

I forgot to mention the highlight of my weekend - my first softball game of the season!  I'm playing on the National Press Club Team.



I was awarded the game ball on Saturday!  What an honor - it's good to know the 15 years I played growing up have not gone to waste... I'm still using the same glove and cleats my mom & dad bought me when I was like 10 years old!



You can follow the Press Club team here.  Let's play ball!



People are very grumpy at work today, I don't know why.  The sun is shining, it's after noon and we're two weeks away from another primary... I don't get the grumpiness.  Then again, I'm so pumped about seeing my Michael this weekend that it would take something really bad to bring me down!



Andrea Mitchell is like a stealth fighter jet.  She just keeps going... and going... undetected.  She anchored Morning Joe this morning and she's STILL on the air... it's after 1:30pm.  AND I'm sure she was up super late last night watching PA primary results come in... yet her make-up still looks flawless.  Get me some of that!



If CNN says "Issue #1" again, I'm going to scratch my eyes out!  Please, make it stop!



Sorry.. all I'm waxing about is TV news coverage... just being myself :)



This morning at work I heard the White House was trying to track me down... they had apparently contacted our corporate office in New York... I was way nervous, why was Laura Bush's office trying to find little ol' me?  It turns out, they want to send me a thank-you note.



How cool!  So, I am anxiously awaiting the mail at work - for that, and for my Morning Joe mug! 



Tuesday, April 22, 2008

What Correspondents Dinner?

There are at least two pairs of flip flops under my desk from the last week.  The good news is they're flip flops and not boots.  The bad news is, THAT'S how busy I've been... that my anal self has allowed shoes to pile up at the office.



I'm still bitter about missing the Radio Television Correspondents Dinner on Wednesday night (don't tell Barack I'm bitter).  It's like prom for TV people in DC and I'm sad I missed my first one since moving here, but I was a little busy :)



Last week is still kind of a blur.  I remember coming to work on Sunday and I remember going home on Thursday.  I know in between Pope Benedict XVI was here, but details... those are kind of fuzzy.  I do have a minute or two to share some pictures with you though, so here you go... (Again, shout out to Nikole for most of these pictures)



N620929077_393312_9448Good morning, White House!  Eric and I were in the "line" to get in at like 4:00 in the morning, only to find out we'd still have to wait.



One random guy went up to the gate and asked to have breakfast with President Bush.



The first time, I laughed.  Then I started to feel sorry for him.



N620929077_393316_304This is the area on the North Lawn where all the TV people "go live."  We affectionately call it "Pebble Beach," I'm not sure why.. the phrase pre-dates me.



N620929077_393320_2774Juniors like me feel cool to be around the big guys like CNN...



*Shout out to Becky!



N620929077_393326_5514 And ABC...



*Shout out to Tracy!



Popeapalooza_002Basically it's just one camera position after another... kind of like school pictures, but for live television!



Popeapalooza_024This is what most people do on Pebble Beach all day...



nap...



do the crossword...



cover the most important office IN THE WORLD...



Just another day in paradise!



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The view from where I was all morning - the lovely Nikole Killion!



Popeapalooza_064_2 Eric set us up super fast.



He is a miracle worker.



Someone tell the Pope!



Popeapalooza_030Here is a very tired me with Nikole.



This was one of those cases where I felt cute when the picture was taken... and now I look at it and think, ugh!



Oh well.



Geez! Count the credentials.



Popeapalooza_005 I snapped this as we were escorted to the South Lawn.



Tulips!



N620929077_393337_3449The South Lawn.



This was the view I started out with...



N620929077_393348_9015 Then these kids moved in...



Popeapalooza_011 This is what I could really see... with my camera all the way up in the air!



Popeapalooza_015 I felt kind of like these people...



They were actually getting quite feisty - asking the Vatican press photographers to get off their ladders.



The VAMP were not having it.  They shouted back "but I have to work, I am working here" in their Italian accents and everything!



N620929077_393394_4229 N620929077_393393_3329



Sorry, I realize I'm spending too much time on the media stuff... you probably want to see the actual Pope and the President, huh?



N620929077_393399_4365 Here you go!



The Pope and the Prez.N620929077_393402_6592



Aren't they cute?



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Happy Birthday dear Pontiff....  Happy Birthday to you!!



Didn't Nikole get some good pictures?



Popeapalooza_016 I kept trying my reach into the air as high as I can approach, I wasn't doing very well with that at all.



White House staffer Pete Seat took this for me - shout out Pete.



My highlight of the day was hanging with the White House peeps.  I even made it into a corner of a picture on the Beltway Confidential.



Find me - where's Waldo?



N620929077_393416_1104 It really was an awesome ceremony.



Such an honor to be on the South Lawn of the White House as a Head of State arrives... all the pomp and circumstance!



Now... on to Thursday... quickly...N620929077_393817_7195



Good Morning Nationals Stadium!



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The stadium was transformed into a giant outdoor church.



The Pope played Center Field.



N620929077_393848_4799 The infamous Popemobile! 



I'm sorry, this thing is cool.



It's like the mullet of cars... Mercedes in the front... Florida room in the back!



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It was so cool!  The crowd was soooo excited.



So neat to experience.



N620929077_393853_173 These are the Pressmobiles.



Not quite the same reception.



Popeapalooza_040Here we are on our perch.



We really had a good position, in the end.



N620929077_393822_6306This was the line of people to get in the stadium.



Popeapalooza_045 This is the line to get a hot dog.



Yes, hot dogs... not Eggs Benedict, or Pope-cicles or Pope-Tarts... ERIC.



haha.Popeapalooza_054



Okay, back to business... here are some pictures taken during the Mass...N620929077_393862_1712



He wore a couple of different hats.  I like the change-up... kind of like a concert.



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Here we have Joe and Eric... hard at work.



Covering the Pope is serious hard work.



We all got major farmer tans... despite the 30 SPF that I did remember!



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Cardinals!



I was doing this in chronological order until I realized I missed this photo.



They're very good at marching in formation.N620929077_393821_1228



I love my co-workers.  I have no idea what in the world David is looking up at... and I like how Eric looks super hard core in sunglasses.



I'm throwing back some Nutter Butters, yeah!



N620929077_393860_9733 And there you have it.  Pope Benedict XVI's visit to DC, through the eyes of the Hearst-Argyle Washington Bureau crew.



Only Nikole is dorky enough to pose in front of an empty stadium with her credential...Popeapalooza_058



And yours truly, of course.



:)



Hands on the hips!  Hips don't lie!



Oh, wow. What a sigh of relief to get this blog out. Whew. Now I have a headache from re-living that stressful event! Just kidding.  It really was quite an honor to cover such an important historical event!  I hope I have many chances like this in the future.



Until then... cheers!



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