Monday, November 26, 2007

Relentlessly Cheerful

Yesterday my extended family took "The Pledge". Each year at or around Thanksgiving we all pledge to be exceptionally nice, sweet and kind until the new year. My father mentioned that his goal was to be "relentlessly cheerful" for that period. 10-20 years ago when most of his kids were teenagers I wouldn't have given him very good odds, but I think this year he might just pull it off. I decided to shoot for the same thing, and so far I'm doing pretty poorly. I already had a programmer come and tell me I needed to be nicer to a gal over in Software Quality Assurance.

My excuse, such as it is, would be that today was particularly stressful. Every two months at the day job we have a big deadline, so I was at work yesterday (that was after being called at 5:00 am to deal with a server that was down) and then, like always, there were a bunch of lingering issues with things that I had to spend all day cleaning up. Then to add further spice to everything there were internet problems at home, which normally wouldn't be something that would occupy much of my attention, but the problems had started over the weekend, so I called Comcast and arranged to have a tech come out this afternoon. But by Sunday morning everything was better, so I called and cancelled the appointment, less than 30 minutes after doing that, the internet went down again, so I had to call back. Of course my appointment had already been given away by that time so I scheduled another appointment for tomorrow. You wouldn't think that cancelling an appointment and making another would take up that much time, but somehow it really does.

Anyway it looks like my cheerfullness level is dropping off by the word so I better end know before I dig myself into a hole from which I can't recover.

Relentlessly something

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Bunny Hunting

It's been a tradition for many, many years in my family to go Rabbit Hunting on the day after Thanksgiving. Since starting my current job I haven't gone (that I can recall, maybe I went once) because the day after Thanksgiving isn't a holiday, but most people take it off anyway which means you can either spend one of the precious days of PTO and take it off or you can go into work and have what amounts to a holiday anyway and save that day of PTO. Traditionally, as you might imagine, I have opted for the latter, but this year I'm only working 30 hours a week, and have every Friday off, so it seemed time to rediscover the tradition.

I got a notice in the mail yesterday that I needed to renew my driver's license, turns out I could do it online. While I was doing it I saw a link to get a hunting license and I remembered that if I wanted to legally hunt bunnies other than jackrabbits I needed a small game license. So I got that as well. It was $26, a lot more expensive than I remember, and since I'll almost certainly not use it on any of the other 364 days that it's valid it makes Friday's entertainment on the pricey side (though still a lot less expensive than skiing.)

More tired than I should be

Monday, November 19, 2007

Quick Note

Thought I'd drop in a post a quick note to let everyone know I'm still alive. Things have been pretty crazy recently, mostly in a good way, though even good craziness is stressful. My sister had her third child (a girl, they're going to call her Katelyn) on Friday, so obviously that was very exciting. I was a little bit jealous, my brother-in-law was IM'ing me during the labor, obviously one of the benefits of an epidural. I spent all four of my wife's labors pressing as hard as I could on her lower back to help provide counter-pressure. Which is one of those activities that seems easy enough at first but quickly becomes ridiculously taxing.

Anyway I would like to blog more often, and hopefully the lull that accompanies Thanksgiving will give me a little bit more time to do that, we'll have to see.

Try some Turducken this holiday season

Thursday, November 15, 2007

A Petition

I really seem to be short on time lately. Part of it is obviously taking care of the driving responsibilities while my wife is incapacitated, and part of it is just the increasing pressure of working two jobs. The wife is doing better each day, and the kids are out of school tomorrow (and most of next week) so hopefully that temporary issue will soon be resolving itself. The working two jobs thing should resolve itself shortly thereafter, but I even when that's gone there's still going to be a huge amount of pressure with the new business, and the holidays. So I guess I should just stop whining and get used to things.

Anyway with my lack of time sufficiently covered, I guess I should keep this short. Mostly I just wanted to link to this awesome petition. Normally I wouldn't try pushing petitions on my loyal readership, but I think this is something I can really get behind.

In space no one can hear you say "Zug-zug"

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Back from Vacation

Okay, so I wasn't actually on vacation, but after blogging every day for a month I thought I could use a little break. My little break turned into a longer break. but isn't that how it normally works? I figured I had to blog today, after the excitement of last night and of course my little brother's comment about it being the end of the era, but the era in question was the blogging era (that cut me real deep). Anyway on to the excitement.

Yesterday the wife called me to say that she was having some problems with vertigo. That she had started feeling dizzy after taking our youngest to her reading prep class, and that it had just gotten progressively worse during the day. When I got home I started doing the standard internet thing: webmd, wikipedia, emedicine, etc. I eventually came across a list entitled "You should go to the hospital if..." Most of the items did not apply to my wife, but there were a couple that did (trouble walking was one, I forget the other). So we decided to head in. Fortunately we have family real close and my "ever reliable" b-i-l (not to be confused with "never follow him" b-i-l and potato wedge b-i-l, and three others beyond them) showed up to watch the kids and we headed to the emergency room.

As you can imagine the ride up was pretty hard on her, but we got right into a room and once she was able to lay back down things started improving. Things really started to look better after they gave her a Valium, at least for her. The ran a bunch of labs, tested her for dehydration, checked her out for a stroke and an ear infection, they all came back negative, but she was doing better, so they let us go around 11:30 (we left the house around 7:30). In between grabbing me a meat twinkie for a late dinner, and getting her prescriptions filled I think I got to bed around 1:00 am (it might have been a little sooner, but I'm sure I didn't fall asleep till at least then.)

She's feeling better today, but by no means fully recovered. I imagine it will be awhile before she's 100% again. The biggest thing now is that she can't drive, so I'm in charge of handling all the kid ferrying duties. It's not bad I actually like spending more time with my kids, it just has a tendency to break up whatever spurt of productivity one might be having...

Flossing pays off

Monday, November 05, 2007

End of an Era

Well the weekend was awesome: very relaxing and completely enjoyable. My wife and I started having kids pretty soon after we got married, so we didn't get to experience "just the two of us" for very long. Despite that (or perhaps because of it) we really enjoy just spending time together. Even more surprising perhaps is that one of the more enjoyable events during the weekend was having a serious discussion of how much longer I should stay at the day job. The question was more difficult than it might first appear.

See the business just keeps getting more and more intense. One of the big deadlines is in January which means, as you can imagine, December is going to be pretty crazy on that front. This by itself wouldn't be sufficient to justify finally cutting the umbilical cord to the day job, but my wife is in the Bells on Temple Square and in addition to several concerts during the month of December she has somewhere north of a million rehersals to attend as well (okay not really, but close). When you add that to the normal craziness of the holidays there was a real worry that we might be orphaning our kids. So the decision was made that November 30th would be my last day.

Overall I feel pretty good about things, though this is not to say there isn't some trepidation and even fear in there as well. It was not an easy decision, we'll see how things develop. My day job is already offering to drop me down to 20 hours a week in an effort to not lose me entirely, so we'll see if that pans out. I sent them a pretty stringent list of requirements (stringent for them, very lax for me) so we'll see if they still want me on those terms. Anyway that's the big news for today, I'll keep you posted as things progress.

From where the Sun now stands today I will TPS no more forever

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Something Epic

So I can finally spill the beans publicly on my grand scheme. As most of you know I was at GenCon during my anniversary. To make up for that I was supposed to arrange to have my mother watch the kids so that the wife and I could go have a nice dinner. Well sometime in September I realized that I really should do more than that, particularly if I was going to have to get baby-sitting. So I came up with this idea of actually getting out of town for a couple of days, and making it a surprise. Well when I looked at the calendar it was already pretty packed. The soonest opening was the weekend of October 20th, but that was the library's semi-annual used book sale (and as it turned out I was sick that weekend). So the next one after that was this weekend.

Obviously a lot of things had to be done, but by far the hardest was making sure that my wife didn't schedule anything else in this time frame. The scary moment came when she was about to schedule her monthly book club get together for tonight. So I had to come up with something more important than the book club that involved only a few people. My wife is in the Relief Society presidency and so I called the president and told her to tell my wife that the Bishop wanted to meet with them tonight. This worked, but it also raised a lot of questions for my wife. In the end the RS president (to her credit) had to involve the rest of the presidency and the bishop to keep the deception from being uncovered.

The other really scary incident happened on Monday. My Mother was writing a letter to my younger sister who's on a mission. She off-handedly mentioned that she was going to have my kids this weekend. She then sent it to the general family mailing list, which of course included not one, but two e-mail addresses for my wife. I haven't checked with the wife to be sure, but I'm fairly confident that my wife would have figured out something was up. Fortunately my sister notified me of the problem shortly after the e-mail was sent and since it was first thing in the morning I was able to get into both of my wife's e-mail accounts and delete the messages before she saw them.

It will be awhile before I try and pull anything like this off again. The psychic strain of keeping it secret and worrying that she would find out was greater than I expected. Particularly last night, I think I dreamed of how I would tell her at least three times, maybe more.

So this is the end of my month of blogging everyday. I was actually using it as sort of a countdown for this event. Or perhaps more accurately I knew I wasn't going to be blogging while I was out of town so today marked a natural cut-off. I imagine I'll be back on Monday. So I'll wish you all a good weekend and sign-out.

Here's looking at you kid