It seems you have to keep on top of your domain registrations if you don't want them to expire. luckily no one was clamoring to get their hands on mcallister.ws. But fans of my brother's website will be glad to know that mcallister.ws is now locked up until 2011. Hopefully I remember to renew it then too. Unfortunately I couldn't snarf it with my preferred registrar, they were showing it as not available. I had to go back to register.com, luckily they upgraded their site and I don't have to email support to get them to set the name servers to mine instead of theirs.
Anyway my wife should be able to check her email no problem after the DNS gods are satisfied with the propagation time. Thank's Michelle for noticing the problem before someone snapped it up.