Saturday, December 14, 2013

December 14, 2013

Oh the weather outside know the rest.  It has been a pretty brutal start to winter 2013/2014 and winter hasn't even officially started yet.  Several days this week have had windchills in the minus teens area and real temps of single digit.  Broke out the engine block heater on the Jeep the other day and trying to stay warm.  I only keep the thermostat on 60 in the house, so it is more than a bit breezy in here.

The last couple weekends have been all about doing Star Wars events.  There seem to be so many to do lately.  Last weekend I did 3 events in two days.  I keep saying I am going to do less events but have somehow managed to sign on for more than I anticipate. 

So, Saturday Dec 7th saw me loading up Artoo and heading over to Martino Jr. High to the bi-annual "Star Wars Museum" event for Toys For Tots.  It was a last minute event that I had done in the past and had a great time at.  It is also a very local event and I do like to do events in my community.  Since it was only Robert Redden, Artoo and I for Saturday's troop of this 2 day event and Robert was going to wear his Commander Cody, I opted for my rather cheesy "Clone Wars Inspired" Jedi costume. 

There was a steady stream of participants most of the day while I was there.  I brought some of my blasters and a few other things to display in the "Museum" part of the event and we took photos with the participants. 

At one point in the day a reporter from the local paper (New Lenox Patriot) came by and staged some photos for the paper.  I didn't expect that they would be published and was floored when I found out this week that the photo appeared on the front page.  I left the event about 1:30 PM as I had some things to do and another event the next morning in addition to returning to the Martino event for day 2.

Sunday morning found me at the 10th Annual Toy Con Charity Toy Drive in Bridgeview.  I have done this event every year since the first one in 2004.  It is hard to believe that it has been 10 years doing this event.  I had a lot of costumed folks show up for this event and it was mass chaos as usual...but that's what makes it fun.  We also raised $200.00 for Children's Treasure Chest for Pediatric Oncology.  I briefly went through the actual Toy Con part of the event and looked at some toys but resisted the urge to buy anything as I am still trying to sell off a good portion of my Star Wars collection. 

I stayed at the Bridgeview event till noon but had to make my way back to Martino Jr. High to finish up that event and bring home Artoo and the pieces I had on display.  While we were at ToyCon it started snowing and where there was not a lot of snow, it was just enough to cause delays in traffic and more than a few accidents.  It would seem that Midwesterners forget how to drive in snow over the summer months.  I got to Martino and finished suiting up but the event was pretty much winding down by the time I arrived .  A few of the other Rebels from Nar Shaddaa Base joined me.  They had gotten into a bit of a traffic jam on I55 due to the snow.  We hung out for an hour or so and had a great time just shooting the breeze and greeting the few people that were still filtering through the event.

This week on Tuesday it was bitter cold so I stayed home in the morning and made my last batch of fudge for Christmas and made a very interesting jam using fresh pineapple and grapefruit.  It really turned out VERY good!!  Very labor intensive as I "candied" one grapefruit rind to add into the pineapple and juice of the same grapefruit. 

After finishing up the jam and fudge, I went to the show to see "The Book Thief".  I enjoyed it a LOT.  Last week I also got to the show to see "The Hunger Games/Catching Fire" - also VERY good.  Since it has been quite awhile since I read the book, I don't know how close it followed it, but I do know that reading the booked helped me understand the story better.

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