Friday, January 16, 2009

Baby it's cold outside!

This is the weather we woke up to this morning:This is what I have to look forward to when I get to work:This is where I'll be pretending I am all day today: Or maybe here:
Or even here:
In all fairness, remind me of this in the summer when we have gorgeous, wonderful weather and these other places hotter than blazes.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Jury Duty

I had quite the lesson in the legal system this past week- I was picked to be a juror on a murder trial. Definitely not a fun experience, but certainly educational.

Here are the top 10 things I learned by being on a jury:

10. Attorneys that are argumentative and confrontational with witnesses are a whole lot more interesting to listen to than those who are more polite.

9. Having the judge sit up so much higher than everyone else is at least partially to intimidate the jury.

8. Being involved with deciding someone's fate is not a pleasant place to be.

7. Sitting in a jury deliberation room for days on end,with only prison food to eat and the promise of being sequestered until a decision is reached, can actually drive one crazy.

6. A jury room halfway through a trial must be one of the most interesting places to test out social psychology theories. Would you cave if everyone else was against you and no one could go home until you changed your mind? Would your opinion of "reasonable" or "justified" change after hours or listening to other people's opinions about "reasonable" and "justified"?

5. A "jury of peers" means some of those "peers" will not know or believe one of the most basic fundamentals of our criminal justice system- innocent until proven guilty. Their vote still counts.

4. Smart, educated, reasonable people can hear the same case you heard and come to a completely different conclusion. Their vote counts the same as yours.

3. The question for juries to decide is not "guilty vs innocent," rather, it is "guilty vs reasonable doubt." Guilty men must go free if the prosecution cannot prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. This does not sit well with most jurors, even smart, educated, reasonable ones.

2. It is difficult to keep one's thoughts straight when there is an innocent victim. How does letting a murderer go free on a technicality give that victim justice?

1. NEVER be the defendant in a jury trial. No offense, but I would not want my fate in the hands of my "peers"!!!

Boy am I glad to be getting back to my Real job now!

Busy week

Last week was a busy one around these parts. Bruce and Hayley came to visit us from New Zealand:

Sure wish we could fly to New Zealand this summer for their wedding! What fun that would be!

We also had Bryan's Christmas party for his work. This is everyone from his clinic that was at the party (the "W's" stand for "Willowbrook"- the location of their clinic):

Over the weekend we enjoyed playing Aunt and Uncle to Little Miss Carolyn. We had a great time watching Nemo, very serious business:Then we braved the snow to visit our neighbors down the street. Carolyn thinks running with her Uncle Bryan is HILARIOUS:Making funny faces at Miss Meggan's house:Carolyn found a very special new toy to play with at Miss Meggan's house- a flash drive! This toy trumped all other toys. Here she is explaining the wonders of the flash drive to Baby Hannah:Considering sharing:

We had a fabulous time with our dear niece!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

New Years Eve 2008

We were so excited to be joined this year by John and Kristy Sargent for New Years Eve! We Love our Sargent friends, and it was such a great time to catch up and hang out together.

We took the train downtown and had a fabulous dinner at the Cheesecake Factory, followed by a FREEZING cold walk to Navy Pier, some FREEZING cold fireworks-watching (and yes, we watched the Family Fireworks at 8:30, not the "real" ones at midnight. we're way too cool for that), another FREEZING cold walk back to the train, and finally warmth and cheesecake at our house as we rang in the New Year in the warmth of our apartment.

There were lots of pictures taken: John and Kristy are glowfaces apparently.
Riding the train, and wondering where Bryan's neck went:
Pretty city lights:
Festivities at Navy Pier:
Sent from Heaven, right when we thought we'd never be warm again:
Here's our stash:
John was quite excited about his cheesecake:Ok, we were all excited:

Thanks Sargents for coming to our house- we love you guys!

Happy 2009!

Christmas 2008

We had a wonderful Christmas again this year. We are truly blessed to have two great families to spend time with during the holidays!

You'll see that this year there were a lot of posed family shots....

A great time was had by all- Merry (late) Christmas!