February 1st was a little bit of an emotional day. I woke up at 5am to a voicemail my mom had left me telling me to pray for Alyssa that she would deliver soon. In my half-awake state, I didn't catch the part of the message that said "It's not an emergency"... So let me tell you, I was REALLY praying. I suddenly realized that it could be happening to my family. You know, all those heartbreaking stories you hear of delivery not going well for the mom or the baby or both. :'(
When I really woke up and got ready (for my first day of work at my new job transfer), I listened to the voicemail again and was so relieved to hear the words, "It's not an emergency" that I had somehow not heard earlier.
Later that morning I got word that little Brent was born. :) I can't describe to you how much I sincerely felt like he was a little miracle baby. Every baby is, but it just suddenly became real to me when it involved my sister and her first baby. His birth was just such an amazing feeling that only God can understand because I *literally* can't put it into words... :)
I had to travel alone to welcome baby Brent because my parents weren't sure when they would be going or coming back, so I picked the week after his due date... And... I have always wanted to travel to West Virginia by train (don't ask where I get my random ideas), so I did! It was actually cheaper than flying and dumped me out a little closer Marty and Alyssa's town. Double win. The triple win was that I was actually able to sleep on the train, because I can never sleep on flights. :/
umm... this lasted for 2 seconds. I think I need markers to color my "adult coloring book". Colored pencils were too slow for me, and I think it stressed me out more than serving as the stress-relieving-coloring-book it's supposed to be :P
The observation car in the early morning. I loved this place and was disappointed that my second train from Chicago to White Sulfur Springs didn't have an observation car.
The bathrooms. Were pitiful. Every single one of them. Eh, but who cares.
I really want to travel Amtrak to WV in the summer... it would be a lot more scenic then!
Chicago Union Station...
(For my sanity I'm grouping the pictures in three groups... Train, Chicago, and West Virginia. Even though the train and Chicago pics were taken both going and coming from WV... :P)
Walking the streets of the Windy City
Views from the Sears Tower
I didn't even think twice about stepping out on the ledge, but when I did... It did give me a little funny feeling. Haha! :)
The lines to step out on the ledge were long... and people were spending a lot of time doing lots of awkward modeling. :P But when it was finally my time, I looked around and handed my camera to some European guy who was also holding a Canon... So I knew he'd know how to operate mine ;P
Next was a cold, cold walk to Cloud Gate, or The Bean, whatever you want to call it...
It was sweet... But by this time I was very cold and...
No. I was freezing. D:
And I set up my camera and tried taking a jumping picture... But as soon as I got the camera counting down, this guy walks up and stands exactly where I was going to jump. I didn't really care, so I stood there and stuck out my tongue instead. And it ended up being the best picture of me at the Cloud Gate that I got. :P Classic!
As soon as I left to go back to the station, my phone died because of the cold.
Actually, no. As soon as I made a wrong turn and started walking down an unfamiliar street, my phone died. I'll be honest, I almost panicked. I'm the world's worst with directions and finding my way around. o.O
But, miraculously I did just fine finding my way back. :)
Brent Abel Clevenger :)
I had my parents bring out all my flash gear so I could take pictures of Brent.
I got it all set up, and Brent was still a little fussy, so I grabbed the cat to model for me so I could get the lighting right. She wasn't too impressed.
I like him even when he's scrunching up his eyebrows ;)
Then.... we went snowboarding/skiing two different days. And we have endless stories from that... :D But I'll spare you on most of them. ;P
First day on the slopes... the eventful day that everyone tried snowboarding o.O
Let's not forget the time I kinda/sorta took out a fence, but mostly just slid under it. Lol!!!
Hehe, we had many good laughs trying to get a picture! ;)
She rocked on the snowboard. I didn't. But I'm totally cool with that, because we had fun!