Leg Problems

April 7, 2014 12:22pm
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For the longest time growing up, I used to think that I had something wrong with my legs. I would get charley horses where it felt like someone was taking my muscle and wrapping it around the bone from the inside, to the point where I was convinced that they just had to be something far, far worse than charley horses because it just felt far too painful to be something that so many people had, and with such an innocent-sounding name.

Charliehorse[1]I mean, how in the world could something named after a beloved character on Lamb Chop hurt so much?!

I think it was compounded by the fact that they almost always happened at night when I was laying in bed, and it became particularly awkward when I grew older and actually had someone laying next to me because I would wake up in so much pain and have no idea how to get it to go away aside from swearing under my breath and praying for it to stop as I tried not to kick the person beside me!

I guess I always just looked at whatever it was that other people called charley horses to pins and needles or something far less threatening. This all came to mind because I had one when I was getting up this morning, and I still concur that if they’re going to hurt that bad, we need to come up with a much less innocent-sounding name…

What. A. Week. 😯

Where do I even begin?! It’s been a week of tests, a week of chaos, a week of hospitals.

Yes, I said hospital(s) … as in plural … multiple hospitals!

Ok, well it was technically the same hospital, just with multiple visits… 🙄

I was actually going to write about visit #1 the other day, and I didn’t even get a chance before we were on our way to visit #2! So yeah, that’s how my week has gone… 😛

The first trip surprised us just after lunchtime on Tuesday, and stemmed from some overnight tests that the doctor’s office had just gotten the results back from … you know, one of those gross, pee ones!

I joke about it now, but that was a pretty scary moment in time because the way it was presented to me was – “They want me to go to the hospital because I might be preeclamptic and they might have to deliver the baby today.”

She’s only 33 weeks right now and it’s definitely too early, so I raced home as sanely as I could manage – on the way, Bob Marley’s Jammin’ came on the radio, which I took as an amusing, little sign that I needed to calm down and do what I needed to do! 😉

Thankfully, everything was fine and after a couple of hours of monitoring, we were on our way and even still made it to our final childbirth class that night, which was nice because it was probably the most beneficial of the three!

It was a little crazy, but we figured that everything was ok and went to our first of two doctor’s appointments today when, just before leaving the high risk doctor, she decided to take Sara’s blood pressure and then came back, “So I’m going to send you to the hospital…”

Don’t get me wrong – it’s actually fantastic that they’re being so cautious with everything, even though my wallet isn’t exactly feeling the same way because I think in total we’ve been to hospitals four times since we got pregnant last August. Ironically, the most recent hospital is currently working on renovations, so maybe this is just how I’m supposed to do my part – I don’t know! 🙄

Anyways, today’s visit was only a couple of hours, too, and we made it home not long before company got here for Sara’s baby shower this weekend. As far as we can tell, the baby shower is still on for Saturday, presuming I get a day off from taking her to the hospital and all! The nice thing is that I’m getting really good at driving down there, and she’s already got a bag packed from the last two times … so I guess if anything, this has been good, expensive practice???

As a side note, the delivery date has basically been moved up to mid-month and now I’ve pretty much been relegated to doing just about everything from dishes to laundry to painting the baby’s room, etc… No pressure there!

I was going to turn left into a grocery store parking lot to pick up a few things, but that light in particular doesn’t have a green arrow and sometimes it’s hard to see if there’s traffic coming from the other direction when there’s somebody trying to turn left as well from the other side of the intersection.

I had thought that everything was clear, but apparently the other car must’ve been floating in the blind spot of another car trying to turn left because I didn’t see him until I was already in the middle of the lane.

I still don’t really know how we didn’t collide – I could see him coming at me, almost seemingly in slow motion, to the point where I remember wincing and bracing for the impact … and yet instead of crumpled metal, apparently I also hit the gas and he swerved and slammed on his breaks because a second later I had cleared the intersection and my car was still thankfully in one piece.

I sat in the parking space for a good couple of minutes before I went in, partially thinking that someone was going to come in after me about what had happened, but aside from his squealing tires just before we didn’t collide, that’s all that I ever heard from the other driver. I even took a look around the back of my car when I did get out just to see if maybe he had nicked me and I hadn’t felt it or something, but there was nothing.

There’s even another light maybe 1/4 mile up that has an extra turn lane and green arrows, so I guess I’ll just use that from now on unless it’s painstakingly clear that there’s no one coming from the other direction. One close call is enough for me! 😕

So I did it. I went out for Black Friday shopping last night.

Well, sort of…

After we ate last night, the whole family ended up going out for a bit of the madness, and admittedly it was kind of fun! For what it’s worth, we did leave pretty late – we probably didn’t even show up at Best Buy until around 10pm, so it’s not like the whole adventure impacted dinner … if anything, it provided a much needed break in between dinner and dessert, actually! 😉

Anyways, a couple of thoughts about Black Friday:

#1 – I think that it sort of gets a bad rap … sort of.

I mean, don’t get me wrong – trampling is bad and if you’re one of those people who’ve been caught on tape being crazy, then you’re an asshole and you need to re-evaluate just how much a $5.99 DVD player is really worth to you.

But crazies aside, I do think that Black Friday serves a greater purpose because it gives people a chance to stretch their dollars farther in order to get more presents for the people that they care about. I’ve heard of many people who feel that they have to go shopping on Black Friday because it’s the only way that they can get things for all of their kids, or that Black Friday is how they’re able to justify getting that one big gift for the whole family like a new TV or a computer or something.

And I have no desire to get into a debate about the true meaning of Christmas, be it biblical or simply just not focused on presents, presents, and more presents.

I personally celebrate the commercial spirit of the season, and Black Friday allows that to flourish a bit more than usual, so if you have a problem with that, blame the economy, not people who go out shopping in the middle of the night in order to fill their kids’ wishlists that year…

Now that said, #2 – I also think that the slow creep of start times is getting kind of ridiculous.

This year a lot of the sales started at 6pm on Thanksgiving, which as far as I’m concerned is still prime turkey eating time! Now luckily it kind of worked out for us because we had little desire to be there the second the doors opened (aka Crazy Time), so heading in at 10pm gave us time to finish dinner and play a game of cards before heading out, and by then the initial crazy had pretty much died down when we walked into Best Buy. There were still a lot of people inside, but the line outside was like 10 people deep for some XBox One promo or something, so it wasn’t too bad.

Ultimately our excursion only took us to 2/3 stores – Best Buy and Toys ‘R Us/Babies ‘R Us – and we were back home by something like 1am, but I still feel for all of the retail workers that had to go in super-early or miss Thanksgiving entirely in order to support Black Friday and I kind of wish that there was at least a little sentiment that Thanksgiving Day Proper be left to family and then maybe sales kicked up at midnight or 5am the next morning or something.

As it was, the TV that I wanted from Best Buy had been on sale all week and the guy cited that only one model was even going to have tickets – the rest we could come in and get any time, and if they were out, they could order them for us at the same price. In fact, my whole take was honestly pretty simple and didn’t require much going out of my way whatsoever…

  • AppleTV – I’ve wanted to play around with one of these things for a while to see about finally setting up a home media server and Best Buy had them for 15% off, so I logged onto BestBuy.com shortly after 6pm and ordered it no problem.
  • 2nd Desktop Monitor – They also had a monitor similar to the one I use now on sale for $99, so I ordered this at the same time as a predetermined Christmas gift from the wife.
  • New TV for Bedroom – This was the only one that posed the slightest challenge because it sold out online and they didn’t have any in the store because apparently they don’t even stock the model I want in the store! That said, I went up to customer service and asked about it, and somehow they were able to put one on order for me anyways that will be here sometime next week!
  • Misc. Toys & Baby Stuff – Honestly, Toys & Babies ‘R Us were basically dead by the time we showed up and it was more a chance to point out some of the stuff on our baby registry to family than snag any huge deals. We still grabbed a few random things anyways – a couple of kid gifts, a few things for the baby, and a couple of Wii games for us just because they had Mario Galaxy 2 for $30 and we didn’t have it yet. Sadly, Toys ‘R Us is typically kind of overpriced anyways, so nothing monumental here, but I still like walking through there because toys are fun, and as an added bonus, it’s always amusing to listen to parents go, “What the hell is a Skylander?! I don’t know – I think he wants the blue one…”

Not sure if we’ll stumble out to any other stores for sales throughout the weekend. My main point of interest at this point would be Legos, and most of the Lego sales are crap this year. We used to scan all of the cheap DVD sales, but I’ve been trying to steer us more digital anyways and we never even bothered to unpack our DVDs from when we moved last summer to boot! Maybe we’ll go looking for some decorations, though … trying to get the abode a bit more whimsical on account of soon having a child to celebrate Christmas with us, so that’s probably a pretty good excuse for lights and garlands and all sorts of Christmas whimsy spending around here!

Because apparently I’ve turned into Martha Stewart now.

Whatever. Say what you will, but the bitch knows how to build a centerpiece that will put your grandmother’s to shame. To shame!!! 😯

Life is Hard

November 11, 2013 10:03pm
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This video has been going around a lot recently, and for good reason – there are a lot of really great thoughts in it. I love the story about the pancakes, but the part that really hit home with me was when she talks about the dangers of ranking my hard against your hard

Sara and I have had a really hard time getting pregnant. I’ve promised myself that once we’ve had the baby and all of it’s behind us, I’m going to write about it in more detail, but for the time being, I’ll just say that it’s taken us years to get where we are today and tens of thousands of dollars to get here, and for now we’ll leave it at that.

It’s been really hard, but quite frankly, a lot of the time what made it even worse was not having the social support that we didn’t know we didn’t have until we were already up to our necks in it.

Comparisons were levied at us from every direction. We had friends try to minimize what we were going through by telling us their own pregnancy horror stories. We had family tell us that it wasn’t fair for us to distance ourselves from gatherings because other people had it hard, too. We also had friends and family who held back the good tidings in their own lives because they felt bad about the things that we were going through.

It was after one of these randomly terrible exchanges that I started analyzing what was going on around us and it really made me start to wonder, “Why does your hard have to be worse than my hard? Or better, for that matter? Why can’t we just sit here and sympathize with each other over the phone and recognize that we’re both going through some really hard times, and support each other instead of one person having to win over the other???”

Because believe you me, I certainly didn’t feel like I had won that conversation. Knowing that I’ve got it harder than somebody else doesn’t help me to get through that situation any better than knowing that it could be worse. If something is hard for me, then it’s hard … it doesn’t make it any lighter because I could have cancer or my loved one could’ve been killed in a plane crash instead of simply having to endure this less hard problem of not being able to make a baby.

Everything is hard, and most everyone goes through hard patches in their lives, but that sentiment should never be used as an argument to “Suck it up!” because “Everybody’s got problems…” 

Everybody’s got problems because life is hard, and we should strive to help each other through those hard times by being there, and being supportive, and listening, and not judging, and not comparing someone else’s struggles to our own as a means to justify how much sympathy they deserve. We could all stand to be a little more neighborly and easy-going on one another instead of always being so quick to throw our own challenges into the mix when the other person is just trying to unload.

What would’ve helped in any of those situations is if someone would’ve spoke up and said, “Hey, it sounds like what you’re going through is really hard. Do you want to talk about it?” Or, “Let’s go get a cup of coffee and try to get your mind off of that stuff for a while.” Or even just, “I can’t imagine what you’re going through, but I’m here for you. Full stop.”

It’s actually pretty simple because my problems may not be about you, but you’re welcome to try and help be part of the solution … as long as you can remember that they’re about me and not about you.

And that’s actually pretty hard, too, but it’s something that we all have to work through together. 😉

More Home Improvement Fun
Been tackling a handful of new projects around the house again, several of which have been on my list for a while now but were deferred due to either bad weather or a lack of the necessary parts. Replacing a handful of broken boards in the fence, resurrecting our sprinkler system that’s had a leak since the week after we moved in, installing the first of so many shelves that are needed to hold all of the crap that  we have around this place … and yet I swear for every one thing that I finally cross off the list, another three miraculously pop up in its place!

Still, it’s definitely fun seeing things start to take shape around this little home of ours – I guess I just wish we had a little more free cash lying around so that it could all happen a lot faster. Seriously, we need so many shelves between the family room, our bedroom closet, bathroom, etc…

Turning a Blind Eye to Politics
So how am I doing so far for February?!

I know I’ve said it about a million times – I find myself drawn to politics because I think there’s a lot of crazy stuff going on in this country that needs to change, and at the same time I often times watch myself getting so wrapped up in some of these issues that it feels like it starts to cut into some of my creative efforts … and that’s bad. I honestly don’t write that much about politics as compared to everything else.

If it’s between politics and funny stuff, I’d much rather write jokes than rant about the Tea Party, so being as busy of a season as this is turning out to be, I’m trying my best to avoid the crazy so that I can focus all the more on creating stuff that’s actually enjoyable to read… 🙂

Missing Mickey Mouse
And lastly for this update, 2013 hasn’t seen very much Mouse thus far, though for reasons not to be disclosed February has been “hectic,” to say the very least! At this point our last trip was spending Christmas Eve at the Magic Kingdom … we had talked about maybe trying to spend New Year’s Eve there as well, but being our first holiday in the new house, we weren’t sure about how our new neighbors like to celebrate and Cleo doesn’t do well with fireworks – especially when she’s locked inside her cage… 🙁

If nothing else, we’ve got reservations in March for the brand new Be Our Guest restaurant in New Fantasyland at the Magic Kingdom … it seems like just yesterday it felt silly having to make them so far out in advance! We also really need to find the time (and money) for a slightly longer vacation over there – it’s kinda crazy to think that it’s now been over a year since we’ve spent even a single night on Disney property … not sure how that slipped through the cracks last year, but hopefully 2013 will be a little more kind to us in the necessary departments to make a long weekend more of a reality!

Goodbye, Shorty…

October 20, 2012 3:06pm
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My wife’s grandmother passed away last weekend.

That’s why I haven’t really posted much this week – we flew up to New York to be with family first thing Tuesday morning, and have been here through the week. It’s kinda sad that often times as you get older, you get to a point where you really only see extended family for weddings and funerals, and yet at least in Shorty’s case, something tells me that she would still take comfort in the idea of everyone getting together on her behalf, even at her own final expense.

There was a time several years ago when all she wanted was to make it down to Florida to see Sara and I get married. None of us, including her doctors, thought that it was very realistic given how she’d been in and out of the hospital so much lately, but sure enough she kept on fighting and when we looked out across that beach before saying our nuptials, she was there – just as happy as ever.

That’s how I’m personally going to remember Shorty – so happy, so friendly, so kindhearted from the very moment that I first met her. She shared a kinship with my wife that was cherished like no other, and I’m grateful merely to have gotten to tag along and snag up the tiniest of pieces for myself over the six years that I got to know her…

FINALLY Splurging for SunPass!

July 16, 2012 10:10pm
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So I finally did it – I finally, after living in Florida for 9 years, broke down and ordered one of the transponders for our electronic toll system.

We honestly rarely ever use toll roads – maybe at random if we’re wandering around and want to go the short way to the beach that we like or one of the preferred movie theaters in the area, but on a day to day basis, neither my wife or I ever have to worry about paying tolls … which is probably why we’ve never bothered to actually pick up a SunPass earlier! We’ve talked about it a lot, but just never followed through, or when we would’ve, we didn’t have the cash handy, or whatever…

I suppose that finally changed this week when I found myself doing this not once, but twice!

This morning I had to take my in-laws back to the airport over on the other side of Orlando, and I ended up taking one of the toll roads that loops around the city to avoid rush hour traffic on I-4, and let’s just say that I almost made it back without running out of cash! Good grief, that road is expensive – I probably spent $10 on 45 miles of road from the airport back to the public freeway … I ended up a dollar short at the last toll plaza before I was done, and it was almost comical watching the lady actually write me out a bill for $1 that I would have to mail back in when I got home.

Tongue in cheek, I made the comment that if I could just pay at the booth with my credit card, it’d be a lot easier, to which she replied, “If you could pay at the booth with your credit card, we’d all be out of a job…”

Not sure what “all” she was referring to – she was the only lane that was left open and the rest had all been converted to SunPass or coin-only lanes anyways!

Moral of the story is – as long as I avoid tolls for another few days until that transponder gets here, I shouldn’t have to worry about this little pet peeve anymore… 😉

A New Month, and a New Start…

July 1, 2012 2:00am
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Whew. Well, June was fun!


(Is it just me or did that line lose a lot of its awesomeness after the whole Borat scene??? Wayne’s World did it first, and they did it best… 🙂 )


I think stress management is going to be the name of the game for July. June problems won’t be going away just yet and I’ve got a veritable ton of creative stuffs to knock out over the next 30 days, so the way I see it, the best I can really do is figure out a way to manage the chaos so that I can make it through the month and actually have a few things to show for it! That was really my problem for June, anyways – the stress just kept on building and building all month, and I really didn’t have a good way to deal with it, so often times it ended up impacting the things that I wanted to do in a negative way – diet & exercise, writing, spending time with Sara – and so going into July, I’d like to find a better way to work through all of that crap so that I don’t lose as many nights to passing out early from sheer exhaustion and so on and so forth!

Above all, I think that sleep is going to be a big one because over the last month, I’ve watched my already erratic sleep schedule just take a nose dive for the worst and it pretty much always ends up screwing me in the long run, so in July I’d like to try to normalize a more reasonable bedtime, with the hopes that over time it’ll make me more productive during the day as well.

I’m also trying to make sure that I spend a little time with my wife each week, as it’s really easy to get lost in everything else and see our time fall to the wayside … which also can hurt in the long run because so much of my creative work really does need down time in order for me to write at my best. It’s just not one of those things where I can push push push and get exponentially better results the more time I put into it – sometimes less time and more breaks really can lead to better results.

I’m kind of just rambling now, so I suppose I’ll wrap it up, but that’s whatever “plan” I’ve been able to develop, anyways – we’ll check in a few weeks from now and see how things are coming!

So much to do!

April 6, 2011 9:05pm
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Sleep is good.

Yesterday was a long day, as noted by my post that went up just after we left around 6:30am! I ache just about everywhere, and yet now that we’re officially here at our new home, there’s just so much to do…

  • Get my fish tank setup so that my fish don’t die in the 5-gallon buckets that they were transported and are now currently living in.
  • Figure out how to get our hot tub working so that we can enjoy a much needed, muscle-relaxing soak!
  • Clear out garage so that I might actually be able to park in it alongside Sara’s car.
  • Get the entertainment system & Wii setup so that I can try to get back into an exercise routine once again.
  • Clear out space around the elliptical so I can make use of that as well.
  • Go grocery shopping because we’ve been eating out way too much throughout this whole ordeal!
  • Decide how I want to design my office this time, and subsequently where to stash whatever doesn’t end up on shelves somewhere.
  • Get spare bed setup and clear out extra bedroom for when my sister-in-law will be here next week.
  • Possibly change locks, dependent on whether we get remaining keys back from old tenant or not.
  • Change of address forms a plenty!

I’m sure there’s much, much more, but in the meantime, I’m hungry and good Chinese is one of the few takeout places that we haven’t hit in the last two weeks yet.

WiiFit is gonna be so mad at me when I finally get it hooked up again…

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