If memory serves me correct, I first saw Lost & Found at a church youth group event in Stevens Point [most likely in middle school]. My friends and I didn't know any of the words, however, were surrounded by others who did. Also, most of the other people attending brought slinkys. To throw in the air for one song. Weird.

After that concert, the next time we saw them was in Atlanta for another youth gathering. By this time my friends Megan, Amber and I knew most of their songs and were quite excited to see them again. We also knew the slinky [aka Lions <---check out this video for the explanation] song by this point. 

From there we went to many more concerts whenever they made their way to Wisconsin. My mom recalls driving us to a bunch of concerts and she recently told me she always had a great time with us. I'm glad to hear that since thinking back to when some of the only CDs I was listening to were Lost & Found, my parents heard A LOT of their music, especially on road trips. At this point I should maybe point out, their sound is unique. I mean, I think it's great but I know it's a bit jarring to some. 

I remember one of the main highlights at each concert was that George [the keyboardist, recording engineer, music director, photojournalist and beverage consumer] would always take a picture of the crowd and later on this photo would wind up on their website. It's hard to imagine for all you youngsters out there, but back in the day it was super exciting to try and find a picture of yourself online. For some reason seeing our picture on their website from a concert was the best thing ever. 

Also, it should be mentioned these guys are funny. We'd bring up some of their jokes / puns randomly and laugh while retelling them. One saying that is so great is Stein Auf, meaning Rock On in German. However, if you are fluent in German, you will know it doesn't really translate into Rock On and it's more like saying Stone On Top Of. Many years ago while getting my mountain bike repainted, I had Stein Auf! painted on the top tube.

Anyway, enough chatter about the past and onto the concert they had in Lebanon, WI at St. Peters. I've attended this church on multiple occasions over the years, most recently when one of my cousins got married. It's a small, intimate church with lovely stained glass windows.

This concert was part of their farewell tour. I attended with my two friends I went to concerts with years ago. One of them brought her eldest daughter. Hooray for second generation L&F fans! My grandma even attended! She didn't really know what she was getting herself into, but I will admit I saw her laugh a few times. Some of my other relatives were there as well, including Samantha who also was taking pictures

It was fantastic that we got to hear all our old favorites. My friend Megan got to request Banner, which got everyone on their feet in order to do the motions that go along with the song. 

I could go on and on about my favorite songs and memories from over the years, but I'll leave you with these pictures. 

There's still many dates left on their farewell tour! Go see them if they are coming to your town!

P.S. If either George or Michael are reading this, I still really need to know!

Why is BLSQD spelled that way?

And why does my Speedwood CD have a Parental Advisory sticker on it? It's printed on the booklet. I'm quite sure a friend had the same CD without it. [Although, it always made me feel like a bit of a rebel, so thanks.] 

P.P.S. Thanks for all the great memories. Stein Auf!

sam + drew get married, part 1

Over the next few posts I have quite a few pictures to share from my cousin Samantha's wedding. Sam and her fiancé Drew got engaged in northern Wisconsin so that is where they decided to get married, among close family and friends. 

I was thrilled to be asked to help with her invites as well as photograph their wedding! Below are the Save the Date postcards the couple sent out. 

Unfortunately because of work obligations my husband was not able to attend. Instead, I spent 5 days being the third wheel with my cousin Katie and her husband Andy. We drove up the Thursday before the wedding to spend our first night at Katie's family's cabin in St. Germain, WI. Growing up, my family would join Katie's and we'd spend some time at the cabin almost every summer. It had been quite a few years since I had been there, so it was nice to be back.

We arrived and immediately saw a deer! Best welcome ever.  

Before setting off for our first big adventure, we took our luggage inside and showed Andy around as he had never been to the cabin before. 

What was this big adventure, you are wondering? Sand collecting. 

Collecting sand sounds easy, correct? Yes. But not when there is only wet sand and you need it to be dried within a day. Because the couple had been engaged in St. Germain, they wanted sand from the local lake to use in the ceremony [to be poured together with another sand, instead of a unity candle]. 

As we went to collect the sand, we realized there was no dry sand to be found. Being the good sister Katie is, she collected said wet sand. We then headed back to the cabin where Katie and Andy laid it out on paper bags in hopes it would dry. 

This may have seemed like a good idea if it was around noon on a very hot day, however, it was not. Since the sun would be setting within an hour or two we thought there'd be no chance of the sand drying in time. 

Our next plan was to go find dry sand, even if it wasn't from the specific beach we were told to gather it from. So, off to another lake we went to get dry sand. 

Did I mention that Katie is a good sister? Of course, and that's why even though we now had the dry sand that we could have EASILY said was from the correct beach, Katie couldn't do it. 

We went to get supper and discussed our next move. Upon arriving back at the cabin, Andy tried to use a hair dryer to dry the sand. As you can probably guess, this was a mess.

We then decided we would bake it. I asked the Twitter world for help and no one out there had suggestions for me. [Thanks for not being there for me Twitter!]

Finally Katie just set the oven to 300 degrees and what would you know? DRY SAND! It took a few batches and the cabin ended up smelling a little bit like fish, but otherwise, SUCCESS! 

I really should think about putting that on my resume. Assisted in drying wet sand in a time crunch. 

Polish Moon Bike Ride

On Friday night we headed to Milwaukee for the first Polish Moon Bike Ride. It was a block party and ride put on as a fundraiser by the Bike Fed of Wisconsin.

For those not familiar, the Rockwell Clock Tower [aka Allen-Bradley Clock Tower] in Walker's Point is mainly known as the Polish Moon because of the predominant Polish community that surrounded it. 

As we drove into the city we were looking forward to everything but the weather! I know, I know - so many of you Wisconsonites lately have been complaining that this summer has been too cool. I disagree. It has been a perfect summer, one where we haven't even hit 90 degrees yet! Although Friday we still weren't hitting 90 degrees, it was annoyingly humid so much that it felt like it was almost 100 degrees in Oconomowoc. Gross. 

Luckily, we got to watch as the temperature dropped the closer we got to the city [thank you lakefront!] and when we arrived to Walker's Point, it was actually quite nice out. 

But, enough about the weather [for now], let's talk about the party! We arrived and they had the street between the relatively new Annodyne Coffee Shop, Central Standard Craft Distillery, and Milwaukee Brewing Company closed down. A mariachi band played and there was great food to choose from. 

We walked around, ate supper [sausage grilled by the guys at Ben’s Cycle and Fitness/Milwaukee Bicycle Company, MKE Brewing Co. beer, and I may have snagged a few free Clock Shadow Creamery squeaky fresh cheese curds] and listened to the band. 

About 20 minutes before the start of the ride, I noticed a man creating giant bubbles. I am still not sure if he was part of the event or just saw a group of people who thought his bubble mastery would entertain them, but either way I am glad he was there. 

Around 8:00 we lined up to start the ride. It was now getting quite dark outside and a heavy fog had covered the area. We started to ride a bit slow at first, but with a group that big it is expected. We were led by motorcycle cops which would keep zooming by us to stop traffic and every time they would go by we would freak out that it was an annoyed driver [I hate that we as cyclists have a fear of all drivers hating us]. 

The ride was nice. The fog was present the whole time and sometimes it felt like gentle rain since it was so thick. We explored parts of the city I had never seen. Families came out of their homes and waved while we rang our bike bells and waved back. Many observers had their phones out either taking pictures or videos. I'm assuming somewhere on the internet, we are stars. My friend Amber and I tried to remember and sing campfire songs. Another friend on the ride, Ester, told us stories of her recent overseas vacation. 

I'm glad the Bike Fed put on this great event and look forward to it happening again next year. It was a night full of great food and music, sharing stories with friends, and hopefully showing the city how awesome biking is.