#tbt: Tales of a second-grade Laura

What did living my best life look like in second grade? Apparently it involved roller skates. And working toward that elusive two block adventure..

Can we also pause for the cause a moment though and appreciate how good I was at cursive at age 7 and a half?


In the Room Where It Happened OR 59 thoughts I had while seeing Hamilton on stage in Chicago

Note: Gifs are from Original Broadway Cast version in New York.

1. Why are my hands shaking? I’m not performing.


3. What if one of them has a sub-par voice? I’ve been spoiled by the original Broadway cast recording.

4. Wonder if they’ll have a female Burr or Hamilton ever… I could totally do either part.

5. Don’t sing along, don’t sing along…

6. What’s your name, man??! ALEXANDER HAMILTON.


8. Lin-Manuel Miranda is a fucking genius.

9. Low-key have a crush on this Hamilton.

10. They need more people in the company I think. Katie and I should go volunteer at intermission.

11. Oh, yeah, I couldn’t dance like that though, so if that’s a requirement…

12. This King George is pretty great.

13. George Washington!!!!!! I think I wanna read a biography about him now.

14. True Life: Hamilton made me more interested in American history.

15. The conundrum of me listening to/daydreaming about being in this show. Do I play Eliza or Angelica?

16. Got-dang, this song (Satisfied) gets you right in the feels.

17. She’s giving up her happiness for her sister’s. She loves her sister. I’m crying. I have sisters. I LOVE MY SISTERS.

18. This is so much better than just listening to the cast recordinggggggg.

19. Wait For It. I think I feel bad for Aaron Burr.

20. This song might make me cry too. I don’t know. I’m just really emotional about being here, y’all.

21. When I do concerts in my car I KILL IT with this song.

22. So this part in the recording always gives me goosebumps, when Hamilton and Washington are arguing……. oh, yep, THERE THEY ARE.

23. My God, I am a nerd with this shit. Sorry not sorry.

24. Stop singing along.

25. Must also stop smiling… my cheeks hurt and my face will be stuck this way at the rate we’re going.


27. Is it too late to start a second career in theatre?

28. How do I get into the cast of this show?

29. Maybe I could just do their social media…who do I talk to about that?

30. Dude in front of us just got up for the third time for a bathroom break – HOW CAN YOU LEAVE THIS?!

31. Oh shit, Nonstop. My other great car concert performance piece.

32. Intermission? Already? How is it already halfway over? It seems so much longer when you listen to the cast album multiple times in a row!

33. OK, I changed my mind, if they had women taking these parts I’d be Jefferson. He’s having the most fun.

34. He also gets the most reactions from the audience…interesting.

35. OK we’re to the Cabinet Battle. I wish I could freestyle rap. Just once I want to go up to someone, rap some insane verse I just came up with off the top of my head and drop the mic and leave.

36. Who am I kidding – I just want to be able to drop the mic one time. On, like, anything.

37. Did. he. just. do. the. Carlton. dance. YES.

38. OK we should be real mad at AHam in this song but it’s a good song. And I’m low-key jealous of the girl playing Maria Reynolds. Katie is too.

39. Room Where It Happens – this is what I’ve been waiting for. Don’t disappoint me, Chicago Burr.

40. This song is about FOMO. I know that feeling. I feel like I kinda have it for being a part of this show somehow. Does that make sense…

41. This is the best song in the show. Don’t @ me.

42. This is living up to all of my expectations and more omggggggggggg.

43. CLICK BOOM. (It took everything I have not to shout that just now…)

44. France.

45. May or may not now be obsessed with George Washington. He’s so fucking good. One Last Time gets you right in the feels. I feel like we should all be saluting him right now.

46. Shit’s about to get real bad. Where’s the handful of Kleenex I brought?

47. Secondhand embarrassment for Hamilton telling everyone in the country about his affair and thinking that was doing the right thing. Yeesh.

48. Burn that shit, Eliza. But also – um, hi, stage people? How do we make sure that doesn’t all catch on fire because it’s looking precarious AF.

49. Yep, crying. And also still slightly worried about the fire in the bucket on stage.

50. Stay Alive Reprise/It’s Quiet Uptown – I am realizing I did not bring enough Kleenex. #feels

51. Can we get back to politics? PLEASE. I feel you, Jefferson.

52. I’m obsessed with this Jefferson. Christopher Lee, you the real MVP of this show.

53. Your Obedient Servant is highly underrated. And, I wish my name was cool enough to be abbreviated like A.Ham. It’s L.Hag. HAG. NO.

54. NO, don’t go, Alex! Stay home!

55. So this kills me. Nobody gets a happy ending in this thing, really. Hamilton? Dead. Burr? Only remembered for killing Hamilton. Sucks all around. I think about this musical far more than I probably should. Nerd. #nolife

56. Chills. Chills. Chills.

57. Oh damn, ok. I didn’t realize that’s how it would end. You got me, Eliza.


59. Um, yeah. When can I see this again?


If you do nothing else, at all, in Boston, make sure you make a stop at Mike’s Pastry for a cannoli. When we went there, the first night in town, we were in line in front of a couple who had come straight there from the airport. They had their rolling suitcases with them and everything. IT’S THAT GOOD.

Rachel documented the occasion.

Between Mike’s and Toscanini’s (the ice cream place just a couple of blocks away from where my sister and brother-in-law live), I think Boston’s got the market on dessert foods on lock.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

The second day we were there, Sunday, will hereby be known as The Day We Walked Five And A Half Miles.

We started out at the bank they robbed in The Town.*

*This is a true one, actually. Filmed right there. So there. Sadly, neither Jeremy Renner or Jon Hamm were seen that day. Dammit.

But the main attraction for the day was Harvard. FRIGGIN’ HAHVAHD. Where the smahties ah. (That getting annoying yet?)

We walked all over the campus and I’m pretty sure I took pictures of every building there. It’s so pretty! And flat! (I went to school on The Hill at WKU. Strongest leg muscles of my life, those years..)

We saw the John Harvard statue, which isn’t of John Harvard, he wasn’t the founder anyway, and oh yeah, the year on there’s wrong.

Someone had thrown green paint on it for some reason. Someone who likes their historical facts to be true, probably.

Sami and I posed here because it looked like the hallway where Rory Gilmore’s dorm was. (I know, wrong school.)

Across the river, we visited Harvard Business School, where my grandpa went! So cool and so surreal to be there after hearing him talk about it so much. And see the dorm where he lived, which was still there!

Grandpa’s dorm.

Not the Liberty Bell.*

*This is also correct. How ’bout that.

We took a break for lunch where Sami tried to rid herself of the gold coins she’d gotten from the machine earlier as she put money on her card for the T. No such luck.

Then it was back to walking, by buildings.

And geese.

And street performers.

And this family photo session that was going on, wherein the dad just kept throwing leaves at this baby.

Oh, and this happened.

Of course, the day wouldn’t be complete without some sort of dessert, too, so, this also happened.

Next up? MIT, nighttime photography, dreams coming true, and why we got a picture with this guy.


That’s how you say it, with the accent. Or maybe it’s more like BWOAHSTEN. I dunno. I can only do certain words. Like hahbah (harbor), or ahhch (arch) or pissah (pisser).

Which reminds me, I only heard like, ONE person with a legit Boston accent when we were there. I’ma need a redo.

So in case you don’t know me outside of what you read here, I recently took a trip with Baby Einstein to see our other (now MARRIED) sister and brother-in-law in their temporary home in Boston. Why are they there? Because he’s a genius and goes to school at MIT and is getting two degrees from there in two years.

The littlest sister and I visited the middlest sister and Swarles for five days. As an added bonus, we got to spend tons of time with Ines, Baby Einstein’s BFF and our now adopted Spanish sister. It was such a good trip.

And you guys, I took so many pictures. Spoiler alert: A lot of them are of buildings. ON ACCOUNT OF THE HISTORY. Not to mention we did a historical tour just a few hours after we got into town.

We had an AWESOME guide.

And were so ready to learn.

I got some seriously screensaver-worthy pics from this tour…just sayin’. Feel free to steal one or all of them for your desktop.

We saw where the original gangstas are buried. Like Pauly Revere and Sammy Adams.

We even saw the world’s first Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse.* George Washington ate there.*

*This fact is not true. But it was a Ruth’s Chris in that building.

We saw the Old State House, where the Declaration of Independence was read.

Surrounded by newer, much much much taller buildings. Crazy.

Then we said goodbye to our tour guide.**

**Only photo of all five of us at once from the whole trip. Like I said, I’ma need a redo.

And we commenced doing touristy-type stuff, a.k.a. walking all over the place in Boston.

Did you know macaroni was first eaten in Boston?*

*It wasn’t. Don’t come to this blog for its historical accuracy, guys.

You know you love it though.

Told you.

Fun – and true – historical fact: This guy. He’s done stuff like this since I met him almost 12 years ago. Except then it was more dangerous, like, jumping out of trees. But this, right here? This is the Chuckie I’ve known for years, the kid who will slide down an entire stair railing and look like a happy lil’ dude while he’s doing it.

Keep in mind, friends, that this is only pictures from the first day. And not even the entire first day.

I’ll be back with more later, including how two of my dreams came true and I fell in love with a dessert. Whaaaa?????

For now, though, just feast your eyes on this amazing piece of photography. And then save it for your desktop wallpaper. You have my permission.

Little pioneers

Here’s some pictures I took on Pioneer Day at Dad’s school. They’ve had the event for several years now, but this is the first time I’ve gotten to spend the day and they needed some pictures taken throughout the day, so I helped ’em out with that too. I took 200-ish – so this is just a sample.


PreparationCannonEarplugsWLKYLocked and loadedGunpowder


Shaving stationLaundry

CookingDancerPanning for goldLittle soldier


CompetitionThese beards are itchy