Thursday, August 30, 2007

Look Who Blew Into the Windy City

If you live in the Chicagoland area, and you were wondering about that blast of hot air, here's the reason - It's the Big Cheese! The recent storms blew him in, and he took the night off to take in a Cubs game.

Yeah, I did it. That's me, in the flesh, under the Wrigley sign. Evidence.

A view from our seats - This one's for you, Cindy Jo!

I won this dollar from him when we bet on what direction the ball would go. He should have known better than to bet with me. And you bet your sweet ass I kept the dollar. He signed it!

This was at the corner of Addison and Sheffield after the game. I am pretty sure my freakishly long arm took this picture. It was hot as hell, and people were everywhere. I may not like the Cubs all that much, but dang if Wrigleyville isn't a huge party.

At Wrigley, the score board is actually changed by little people inside. Imagine that - it's hard to if you have never seen it. Very cool.

At the end of the evening. The game was fun, and it was great to show a new guy around town. Next up, Comisky Park...

You Know You're Sleep Deprived When....

You fall asleep during a bikini wax.

True story.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


Yeah, I did it. I went to (gasp!) the Cubs game last night. I got a call earlier in the day from the President of the White Sox fan club about this indiscretion, and from what I was able to make out through the expletives (they are south side, after all), I think they are revoking my fan club card. Sigh. Maybe by the time I earn my fan privileges back, they might have won a game.

Frankly, it's a damn miracle I didn't instantaneously burst into flames as I walked through the front gate, both from my traitor status and the heat of the night. Yikes! And my dumb ass wore jeans. "Smokin hot" jeans, I'm told, but jeans nonetheless. Going to the bathroom was like trying to peel off a wetsuit, another task which I try to avoid at all costs.

But even though the weather was blazin, the game was cool, and the seats were fantastic (11th row on the third base line, bitches! I guess being a Chicago gal my whole life has earned me some connections). And I wasn't alone...though I wish my game companion could have spelled Cubs right when he wrote it across his chest in paint. Hey guy - It's Cubs, not Kubs.

I hear I might be getting some pics soon, as my companion took them, but we'll see when that happens.

Anyhoo, I ended up working all night when I got home, so went to work after two hours of sleep, and mostly caught up on said missed sleep during the workshop I was attending. It would not have been so bad if there weren't but ten of us there - it makes it a little more noticeable, ya know? It's 4:30 here, and I am about to take myself a little nappy-nap.

Yeah, that's about it.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Love Burst

Have I mentioned recently how much I love my family?

Well, I do. And I certainly don't tell them enough.

Big kisses, Little McCues.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Mostly Checkin' In and Potentially House Poor

I didn't realize I hadn't posted in several days (I know you all have been counting), and frankly, I really don't have a ton to say. A couple things have happened this week that are minimally noteworthy:

1. I managed to make it to the pool twice. Yup. A whopping two times. But two times is better than no times, I guess. And the first time I did 1000 yards, the second time I did 1200, and I will slowly keep increasing until I can get back into fightin' form. And I didn't appear all that unfortunate (i.e. no kicking myself in the head during flip turns) so I'll take the small victory.

2. I found a house. Okay, it's really a condo, because to buy a house in the city, you need to have a real jobby-job, and even though I have one, it's in child welfare and comes with child-welfare-pay, which makes me (as the kids like to say) broke ass poor (but on a separate note: kudos to the state government for finally passing a budget - now ol' girl can actually get paid this month). But I am really excited about it. We are doing an initial inspection next week, and then if all goes well and the walls don't seem to want to collapse around my head and the roaches seem content to stay out of sight, I will put my first offer in.

It needs some work, some small cosmetic stuff, like stripping and repainting the walls, ripping up some carpet, and then over time some larger improvements (like the kitchen, but I don't cook..ever...unless putting cereal in a bowl and pouring milk over it constitutes as cooking...but it would have to be a plastic bowl because I hate to wash dishes....or really any housework for that matter....wait, why am I doing this again?) But it would definitely be a place to stay for a bunch of years, so I guess I would have time to do it all. And if they laugh me out of town with my bid, so be it. It just means maybe there is something better out there.

Yeah, that's pretty much it.

Thursday, August 23, 2007


Holy storms!

While most of you all have been blasted with heat, we here in the Midwest are doing the doggie paddle to keep our heads above the non-stop rain waters that are causing rivers to crest and streets to flood. And tonight was no walk in the park.

We got our corn-fed asses beat tonight. Although it has not yet officially been confirmed, I have heard rumors that tornadoes did make their way through Chicago this afternoon. And let me tell you, there's nothing like the sound of emergency sirens going off to really freak ya out. My sister is a teacher on the northside of the city, and they made them go in the hallways when the sirens sounded. Cool!

Now, I love myself a good storm. There is something painfully beautiful about the blackened sky right before it opens up and unleashes the fury. But when those storm clouds turn green, and actually look like they are forming arms to come down and snatch you up from the porch on which you stand gaping at them....well, now, that's a whole 'nother story.

Of course, maybe I shouldn't stand on the porch...that's how people get hurt...but I can totally understand why they do it...

Anyhoo, I have the opportunity to hit the sack at a decent hour tonight (10:30!) so I am signing off. Oh, and I totally forgot to mention - I started swimming again Monday, and get to meet back up with my good 'ol training partner, Larry, in the morning, for our first joint-swim. Whoo-hoo!! We are supposed to ride tomorrow as well, but it will likely rain all day, and I am meeting with the realtor to look at more houses. Did I forget to mention that part, too? I'm buying my first house. Or at least trying. My student loans are trying their darndest to prevent this.

More on that later....

Monday, August 20, 2007


This weekend I went to Wisconsin to celebrate my friend, Sue (the one in the middle), and her recent completion of her dissertation and subsequent graduation. Me and Sue and Suzanne (on the left) have been friends for the last four years, since our internship at the hell hole of which we do not speak.
Sue, Suzanne and I all live in different states. Suzanne recently moved back to her hometown of Louisville, KY, and Sue has been a Wisconsin girl for as long as I can recall. We have a lot in common, one of which was our process through our doctorate degrees. They have been there for me through the worst of times, and no matter what is happening in their lives, will drop it to answer one of my distress calls.
Because we lives so far from each other, the phone is what usually connects us, but it doesn't compare to the face-to-face contact that we had this weekend. I needed, particularly as of late, and I already miss them.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Training Countdown

So it looks like all system are go for next Monday. In fact, physical therapy went so well this week that my PT asked me today if I wanted to run on the treadmill for a bit. And I almost, almost did it, but truth be told, I was a scaredy-cat. I just wanted to get through this week of increased complexity in my drills, and see where I was at, before I threw anything hard in, like running.

So I am still planning to make my triumphant return to the pool on Monday. All said, it's been just over five months since this whole injury began. I remember about four weeks into it, and I was still planning my race schedule for this summer. Wow. Now a couple of squats and some balance ball rotations make me work up a sweat.

Well, on the positive side, there's nowhere left to go but up, right?

So onward I march.

I never thought I would be so happy to put a bathing suit on as I am right now.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Rhode Island Randoms

I know, I know - the wedding is over. But I thought I would just share some random pics as they start to come in (clearly, I already need another vacation...or just a brief transport back into time one week ago).
The Welcome Dinner - My sisters, the bride and the new mom.

And to think, it was just a few short years ago we were pummeling each other for the remote or last Pudding Snack Pak. Sigh.

Yeah, I have no idea why we're laughing, but I love this pic because: A.) It's me and Devin; B.) I am clearly trying to keep my dress from giving a peep show; C.) You can clearly see my version of the Bible a la Microsoft Word; D.) I just do.

If one could read minds, this is what they would see:

Devin: Look at how beautiful I am right now. You better appreciate this Patrick, because its running shorts and sports bras when we get back to Chicago.

Patrick: Oh, she is so beautiful. Don't cry, you sissy. You promised her you wouldn't cry again! Oh, boy, now she'll make me take her last name for sure!

Megan: They look so happy! I wonder when I should tell them I'm moving back into their house? Not now...but maybe after dinner....when is dinner, anyway? Ahh, food.

A private moment.

This was already up, but this version is slightly clearer. The better to see our gleaming sweat with. The look on Devin's face is like, "Look at me bitches - I'm married!"

Hey, how'd he get through baggage check? Ah, just another way my sister tried to save money - the ol' "kid in a suitcase"trick. Figures.

That's it for now.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Newbie Adrianne

Wanted to give a huge shout out and mucho hugs of good luck to my friend Adrienne, who is doing her very first tri tomorrow morning. This girl is one of the best, kindest, warmest people I know, and I can't wait for her to get hooked on the tri-world.

Good luck Adrienne!!!!!!!!

Back on the Horse (and Felt)

So I promised a tri-related post after that long reflective one, and since I am a woman of her word, here goes.

I can't write about training if I am not actually training, so last night, I made a promise to myself that, on Monday, August 20, I will finally return to the pool. Wait, there's more.

That same week, I am going to go for my first bike ride. In almost six months.

I have been going through physical therapy for much of the last three months, and have only had one major setback, which occurred about a month ago. Since that time, I have had some soreness, but it's been mostly muscular, which we have been working on in PT.

While it makes sense that I would be a little more hesitant to get back on the bike, there is no real good reason that I should not be swimming. Each time I go in, the PT asks if I had started training again, and I feel a little ashamed that I haven't even started back practicing my drills. It is mostly fear, I guess about not being at the level I was when I first got injured. I hate starting things over (which I am sure is no surprise, based on all the posts about change and starting from scratch) but I was going to have to, at some point. There is no better time than the present, right?

The reason I picked to wait another week is that my PT is going to increase the complexities of my workouts to add rotations this week, which is what re-injured me a month ago. So I basically want to see how that goes, without adding anything else that might interfere with my progress. Also, I have a hellacious week of work next week, and to cram in workouts would be difficult. At some point, though, I know the training will become more regular, and IM training will start, so my work schedule can't be an excuse (oh boy will those months be fun!)

Having been injured now for six months, it has become easy to just say that I can't workout because my back hurts. And that was never a lie- my back usually always hurts to some degree. But swimming won't make it hurt anymore, or at least that's what I have been told.

I guess I have reached a point where I need to hold myself accountable for my training. I feel like I have been waiting to feel perfect, to feel completely pain-free, but that day may never come, as is common with back injuries. So the compromise is to start over, take the pain as it comes, and deal with it when it happens.

And now that I have put that out there for all of you guys and gals to read, I also have some external motivation and support. It doesn't feel so scary when I set a goal, as opposed to have something just looming out there. Fear is always a huge part of what prevents me from doing things - whether it is being in a relationship or, alternately, not being in a relationship, or starting something over in the face of lost fitness. I have reached the proverbial decision of "Poop or get off the pot." And since it's not my time to get off the pot without my IM finisher medal, I choose to poop.

Wait. That didn't sound how I thought it would.


Well, suffice to say that I am taking back my training, and making a choice to do, as opposed to wait.

Ok. That's all.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

One More Reflection, And Then I Promise A Tri-Related Post

“…I contemplate my life undergoing change – tremendous change. The great fear is this: If I shed many characteristics that stand in my way, what will be left? It is as though I face a great void, a terrifying unknown. Yet, when I acknowledge how far I have come, I can see how much I want to change. The desire to grow and to heal has brought me to this uncomfortable point, because I am tired of the way I have been…I find solstice in the fact that…I need not change anything. I must simply prepare myself for change. I can take all the time I need.

Change will not be effective unless I am ready for it. I need only trust that, when the time comes to move forward, I will know it.”

When you have five days on vacation to sit in your head and reflect on your life, you can come up with some pretty crazy ideas. One of the recurring thoughts that kept creeping back in was that I, for one, am motivated by pain – who isn’t really? I mean, its when things get tough and the pain hurts so bad you can barely breathe, I used to cry and wonder, ““Why are people doing this to me, and how can I get them to just stop?” More recently, I have changed this perspective to sound more like, “Why is it this way, and what can I do to stop from feeling like this?”

And while this, one the surface, may sound like progress (you know, the whole holding oneself accountable thing), it still reflects my need to change, and change QUICK. When the pain is too much, my first inclination now is to change, and do it quick. Move forward as if running, because the faster I do, the less pain I will feel. This includes making really rash decisions. I can really go from zero to sixty in the span of a couple of hours.

And I will agonize over a decision that I believe needs to be made RIGHT NOW, while forgetting that, ultimately, decisions make themselves. I just don’t have the patience to wait for the decision to make up their darn minds, sometimes. But that’s my issue – I want what I want when I want it, and not when I need it.

The main place this is coming up (as some might have gathered from previous posts), is this new world of dating I have recently entered. See, the thing is, I was single for about the nine months, following the demise of a four year relationship. I have been dating (I guess you could call it) this one guy, who, in many ways, is really quite great. Except for this one thing – we are in very different places in our lives. He has a very clear idea of how this should proceed, but I was not sure I was totally on board with it. Even within the span of a date, I go back and forth with what I want. I get in my head, ruminate about whether or not this is right, should I go forward, should I leave, should I stay, yada, yada, yada. If that just made you crazy reading it, imagine the craziness that beholds me daily. I get so serious that I need to know right now what I should do.

And seriously, I need to chill the eff out.

It hit me a couple days ago that this whole process of figuring out what I want - it can’t get solved in a few dates, or a few weeks or maybe even a few months. It’s just that the pain that goes with the changes feels so bad, at times, that I just want to make rash decisions to just stop the hurt. But I can’t guarantee to myself that those decisions will be best for me.

And low and behold, tonight, the decision about the new relationship made itself.

I guess patience paid off. And so did asserting my needs.

And so I move forward.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007


I was tagged by Krissy, so here goes....

Jobs I’ve Held
Ice cream vender at Lincoln Park Zoo (age 14)
Cashier at Arlington Racetrack (age 15-18)
Cafeteria helper (college)
Newspaper editor (college)
Gift shop cashier (college)
Barista (college)
Copy editor/outsourcing agent for writers (college)
Waitress (college-grad school)
And five years of psych interning, which is code for “someone’s bitch”
Clinical psychologist

Movies I Watch Over and Over
Billy Madison
Shawshank Redemption
Black Hawk Down

Guilty Pleasures
Gossip websites
Country music
Flip flops and sundresses
Reading in bed in the middle of day
Magazines (it’s a bit unruly)
Hot water (CANNOT drink it cold)
Boys boxers and boxer briefs (to wear, not collect as souvenirs)

Places I’ve Lived
Chicago, Illinois
Milwaukee, WI (one year, for college, and it smelled…sorry WI people)
Evanston, Illinois

Shows I Enjoy
Best Week Ever
The Soup
Deadliest Catch
Brothers and Sisters
The L Word
I have refused to get a tv since I recently moved, so I, Queen of Pop Culture, have been out of the loop here.

Places I Have Been on Vacation
San Diego
New York
Rhode Island
Arkasas (is that considered a vacation?)

Favorite Foods
Gummy Bears – the Haribo brand
Fudge ice cream bars
Baked Lays – Sour Cream and Cheddar
Panakes soaked in syrup
Clif Bars
Love's Frozen Yogurt
Pretzels Nuggets
Turkey slices (pre-packed, with a touch of mustard)
Movie theatre popcorn

Websites I Visit Daily
All the ones listed on my site
Chicago Tribune

Body Parts Injured
Both knees

Awards I’ve Won
Only academic ones
Oh, and I got third in my age group once for a 5K


Monday, August 6, 2007

Back to Real Life

Just thought I would give a quick check in - I have nothing really new report, just that I am home (gosh the week flew by!) and am back at work (yuck). And for some reason, if those in Chicago have read any of the papers these last few days, the child welfare department is hopping with new cases these days (yeah, that's not a good sign), so it was right back into the swing of things at 8AM this morning.

The humidity back in Chicago is off the charts, so much so that even I, Queen of the Hot Weather, is finding it hard to make my way through the soupy air. My apartment (read: dorm room) does not have air conditioning, which is actually okay, because it is small enough that a little fan seems to do the job of cooling me off during the night (I am rarely home long enough during the day for it to bother me). I may actually venture into the office tomorrow instead of work from home, just for the cool-off.

So back to my report writing. It's almost midnight.


Yeah, I know.

I would give my left arm to be back on the Island. I'm a righty so I don't really need it anyways.

Maybe tomorrow I'll win the lottery.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

The Wedding

There are few words I have to describe the event I just witnessed. There was not a flaw in a day filled with family, friends and, above all, love. I usually don't get so sappy about weddings, but the stunning beauty of the last few hours is beyond anything I ever imagined. Let's take a walk down the isle of my sister's new journey.

The wedding was held at a tiny yacht club in Jamestown, Rhode Island. My sister, Devin, literally put the wedding together on a shoe string budget, using mostly her uber-creative mind and a love for all things personal and sentimental. As you likely read in the last few posts, the focus of the weekend was on family and friends, "with a wedding thrown in." Tonight's party was no exception, as the evening kicked off with the cocktail hour BEFORE the ceremony, as pictured above. Devin was ready to go in a sun dress, counting down the minutes until the big moment. You would never know it, by this picture, or really any of her actions throughout the day. In fact, everyone kept remarking how calm we were, how "cool" everyone seemed, and truly, it was because that's the tone Devin set. She was easy-peesy, smiling and letting it all soak in.
Ellen was the maid (matron?) of honor, rocking her orange satin dress with my killer heels.

Devin was walked down the "isle" by my little brother, Nolan. He loves his job!

This is me performing my duties - just after the exchange of rings. I could barely wait to introduce them as Devin and Patrick Sullivan, and it was only afterwards that my sister said, "Yeah, I'm keeping my name." Oops. Minor detail. But I lLOVED saying that line.

Seriously. No seriously. She's beautiful.
We teased her earlier today about how she transformed from a 12-year-old boy to a woman in the span of a few hours (she's a size zero, and total tomboy, but to see her here, it is breathtaking to me).

This guy likely looks familiar. He is my boy-best friend, Joe. Dated in high school, been friends ever since. Joe's a new dad. We all grow up, I guess.

Me and Nolan, just chillin.

And this would be dinner. Really. It was. I never had lobster before and when they put it on my plate, I was like, "Yeah right." But I cracked it like a champ, and even managed to finish before the rest of the table. Well, truth be told, I finish MOST meals before everybody...I eat really quite fast.

The family. Nathaniel (brother in law) Ellen, Patrick (new brother in law), Devin, Mom, Me, Nolan.
The gals. Hotness.

And the boys. I swear I didn't wipe the smile off all night. Really, all weekend. And I really appreciate you all taking the trip with me, reading through the posts (I tried to keep the commentary brief and inundate you with pics of my life) and sending good wishes out this way. I leave for the airport to come back to Chicago in three hours (yes, its 2AM here right now, but I am wide awake!) and even though I am ready to come back, I am sad that it's over.

The Beach, A Welcome and the Morning After

What a full day yesterday! I feel a bit bad, as my sister has been running around crazy trying to get things together, and I mostly spent the last two days at the beach. Hey, a Reverend's gotta do what a Reverend's gotta do!

Just chillin' at the ocean with Larry, Devin, Patrick, and Me!
Extreme close-up! There is also a version of this with my sister, but I figured I would spare you the full figure bikini shot - This is not THAT kind of website!

Me and the lovely bride-to-be at the Welcome dinner - All of the guests are from out of town, mostly Chicago, and there was no real "rehearsal" so it truly was a Welcome Dinner! Devin, in her all creative-self, used pineapples as center pieces, to symbolize the gift sailors used to bring to the island when they landed. You can't spit around here without hitting a pineapple! Who knew?!

Ah, me and Big Larry. We so didn't try to coordinate, he just wanted to copy me. You may also notice, as the pictures go on, that my hair starts to get bigger, and bigger, and bigger....

Patrick, Devin, my mom and Me. 'Nough said. Although funny story - my mom, she's known to like herself a glass or 12 or wine, so afterwards, we went to a bar, and my mom, who comes over later, sits down and starts talking to some random table, thinking it was us. No clue, none, that she didn't actually recognize the people, who were so nicely trying to enjoy their burgers. Oops! Three cheers for Chardonnay!

This is one of my good friends (ex-boyfriend) John and his wife, me and one of my best friends (also ex-boyfriend) Joe. Can you start to see a pattern with me and the exs....The only one missing from this photo op is Larry or else we'd have the trifecta of Megan's past!

Oh right - like you've NEVER woken up with an improvised diaper made of a towel and tape wrapped around you after a night partying....Sure, I believe ya....

Today is the wedding, my sister is off for a run with her friend, and the everyone scatters for tennis and golf. Me? More sun, or just chillin. After all, I'm on Island Time.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Rhode Island Lessons

So my lovely sister, who can do just about everything, managed to get my camera fixed, so a fixed camera makes for a happy Megan.

And so far, this is what I learned in Rhode Island:

My 6-month old nephew fits into my 27-year-old sister's PJs.

There is something about coming home from a long day at the beatutiful shore that just wipes ya out.

A positive attitude in a home where its 97 degrees and humid without air conditioning is essential.

Ah, just one of the perks to being a kid - if your 31, ya tend to get stuck...I know, I tried.

And finally, all the McCue's in a row. That's Big Nolan, Me, Little Devin, and Glowing Ellen.

So the real fun begins tonight, with another trip to the beach, and then the rehersal/welcome dinner. Yay!!!!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

How It Starts

Yeah, so...about those posts. Five hours into my five day trip and I dropped and broke my brand new digital camera.

Right down the front porch stairs.


So no pics today, we are having my brother-in-law bring theirs from home tonight.

Otherwise, the trip is good, Devin is stressed, the weather is brutal, and the house we are staying in has no air conditioning. Ever been to Newport or Jamestown, Rhode Island? Interesting little place, for sure. Wish I had some pictures to show you....:(

Oh well. Off to the beach. Such is the life.