Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Two good days in a row. Last night we went over to Oma's supposedly to have dinner and I got surprised by Oma' merely being the babysitter. We went out for dinner, then picked up Auntie Melissa and the cake, and headed back to Oma's for a round of Quiddler. It was good.

The sound of rain splattering on the concrete woke me up this morning, well after I'd gone back to sleep following CP's 3:45am vocal lesson anyway. I got the bike gassed, loaded, and headed out for Reddington Pass to give the XR a little bit of a test. IT WAS COLD! I dressed just like I would for a winter ride back east. It felt just like all of those times my bro and I would load up - headed for a weekend in N. Mo. farm country. It's supposed to get down to around 25-30 tonight. Nothing like the desert for wild temperature and weather swings. I got about 15 miles or so of trail riding in and finished up around 30 with fire road riding. It was fun not to have to keep up with anyone and I found a good training loop. Trail #4438. In one section it's nothing but bowling ball sized rocks laid next to each other....for about a 1/4 mile.

We're off to see Warren Miller's new movie Off The Grid tonight. They're handing out Telluride lift tickets with an entry and there's a guy that wants ours. He's going to get us in to see the movie in return for our lift tickets. It's a good deal for everyone and it'll be Dianne's first Warren Miller movie. My first time to see one on the big screen.

Aunt Brandy is going to babysit! Yayyyyyyyyy!

Monday, November 27, 2006

It was a good a day as any to turn 37 I reckon. CP was great all day and I got lots of calls from people that were happy to know that I'm alive and well. As a friend often says, "Every day I read the obituaries and I am always pleased to find that I'm not listed". Best of all, my wife let me do what I wanted to do today for a bit. I got some free time to tinker with the XR250 and it was a blast. I'm convinced that tinkering is profound therapy for whatever ails, but insurance doesn't cover it. Tonight she bought be dinner and ice cream. Life is good.

The LW got out of the house today and zipped over to Ike's Coffee and Tea to work for a while. It was so wonderful to see her get out of the house and I must admit that I really enjoyed having the house to myself, well, almost. CP kept me company and was just all smiles today. We soaked up some sun in the yard for a bit and before we knew it, the LW was back and sequestered on a conference call.

We're watching a bit of football on and off. It's going with the TV muted and is completely pleasant that way. I think that the last time I watched a snowy football game, Terry Bradshaw was playing as quarterback.

I should be able to post photos once my camera's cord arrives in the mail from Arkansas. It's always the tiny important things you leave behind.

CP fell asleep in my arms tonight and that's the best birthday present of all.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

We made it! The trip out to Chicago is in the history books and we're enjoying a beautiful and quiet Saturday at home.

All went well on the trip and it was good to meet the LW's paternal side of the family. They were all cool. CP got to see some new people. Some folks that I'd met before and some new faces. The Betsy met us at the airport and it was relatively smooth sailing from there on out. We had a great thanksgiving and topped it off with smores by a bonfire. Some of the in-laws stayed at the Blackhawk's Trail Lodge just outside of Byron. It was a nice spot and the folks there are great. CP traveled well. She slept most of the time and was happy for the rest of it. Wherever we went, people told us what a good and beautiful baby she was. She loves everybody. We made it back to O'Hare with time to sit down and eat a nice lunch before ambling down to the gate for the 4 hour flight home.

We've got the flight travel thing ironed out, but I hope that we don't have to go anywhere anytime soon. We tried out something new this trip - the Magellan NeverLost system that they put in the Hertz cars. Man, that thing was really sweeeeet. It's really easy to use and is so much better than all of the hassle (and interspousal yelling) that goes along with being lost in a foreign town.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

CP has learned recently to employ her new teeth to shock her mom while she breastfeeds. It gives the LW quite a start and makes me laugh. I don't think that the LW sees it to be quite as funny as I do though.

Off to see the Betsy tomorrow morning.

Today will be spent washing, cleaning, and packing. I hope that this time we can prepare a bit better to make it through the TSA (Take Shoes off Again) checkpoints. The last time, they completely unpacked our perfectly, and tightly, packed baby bag and we almost didn't get on the plane because it took time to repack.....while trying to get the carseat out of the way and our shoes back on.

As if that wasn't enough stress, I made us miss the flight. I printed the information for the trip that we had originally booked. It later changed and I printed the wrong information. There were 4 connecting flights about an hour apart on our way home, so it wasn't a big problem. We just shifted to the flights that were an hour later than the flight we were supposed to be on. Not fun though. We discussed getting stuck in DFW and figured that we'd just go visit Gramma if that happened.

Our car seat is an issue. We love our trusty Britax Boulevard, but getting it through the airport is a pain. It now has it's very own hand cart so we can roll it through the airports when it gets gate-checked. For this trip, we'll see about working on packing and consolidation. For those of you who have never had to gate check any baby stuff....welllllllllll you're in for a treat! I only hope that you don't get some of the same cranky childless gate agents that we've had to deal with. The airlines treat them poorly and sometimes you can really see it.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

A beautiful Saturday outside.... spent indoors. I only got out to put laundry on the line and I had to rush and juggle the baby with the LW just to do that. The LW has been in the kitchen and I've been puttering when CP naps. Doing things while CP naps ends up not getting either of us very far. We finally got some sleep last night, but it was a rough go. It's hard to look forward to holidays when you're only semi-functional due to sleep deprivation.

O'Hare the day before and after Thanksgiving is looming in the not too distant future. It hangs there like dental work that you know you have to get.

There are a few new pics in the flickr box now.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Back from Arkansas and CP came home with one more tooth than she left home with. It was a good trip and we got to visit with people who had never seen CP. There are plenty of pictures of CP with her grandparents and great-grandparents. It was the first time that Jason got to see the baby and it was nice to get to visit with him.

As always, CP's sleep schedule was fouled up by all of the travel and has yet to really sort itself out. It's a really fun time, let me tell ya. It should be back in order by today some time. Next week, we do it all over again.

J and I broke away on Friday to try and get some dirt bike time. My buddy Pat from KC had loaned me one of his spare bikes and J brought it down with him. We sneaked away on Friday and headed out, only to be stymied (a second time) by a KTM that wouldn't perform. Last time it was the 400EXC that I bought (oil leak) and this time it was a loaner that had some seeeerious carburetion problems. We think that the main jet may have fallen out and landed in the float bowl. It was like riding a bike with a throttle that acted like an on-off switch twice every second. Not fun in a rock bed.

I'll post photos and more stuff later. Work is busy this week with our big cycling tour.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

A toof! Right before we leave town to visit the folks in Arkansas. How fitting considering the prevalent stereotypes.

Monday, November 06, 2006

It was a good weekend around here. Dug in my Community Garden plot and then got to watch Long Way Round all day on Sunday. I saw it on the shelves at Casa Video, but thought that it'd be some half-arse docudrama about a couple of rich Brits running around the countryside. Well, it was kinda like that, but still good. Other than McGregor not being able to ride in sand or potholes worth a crap, they did really well and it was a good recording of the trip. It also showcased how KTM threw them under a bus at the last minute of their trip and how BMW saved the day. It's one of the few DVDs beside On Any Sunday and Dust To Glory that I'd consider owning. Now I know why my friend Pat really wants to get out on that XR650 and stir up some dust. My throttle hand started to twitch just sitting there watching the movie. It looks like a trip to Moab is somewhere in the future....I'd guess somewhere before my 40th birthday and just after I get a GPS and figure out how to use it. Maybe I can pry my brother out of the armpit of the midwest and get him on a bike out here.

The LW got to sleep in until almost 10am on Sunday. It was good to see her stumble into the living room with squirrelly hair and sleepy eyes. CP had been up since about 6:30 and she and I had a good morning, so it started everything off right. Aunt Brandy visited in the afternoon and then the LW went to see Maya Angelou with Aunty Lisa.

Friday, November 03, 2006 silly fundie republican. You may remember this guy from the "Root Of All Evil" series that Richard Dawkins did. It's funny to see that some of the folks who rail the hardest against gay marriage and promote "family values" turn out to be rotten to the core. All we need now is a pic of W huggin' ol' Teddy Boy.

From Wikipedia:

Haggard is a firm supporter of President George W. Bush, and is often credited with rallying evangelicals behind Bush during the 2004 election.[7] Author Jeff Sharlet reports that Haggard "talks to... Bush or his advisers every Monday" and opines that "no pastor in America holds more sway over the political direction of evangelicalism."[8]

In a June 2005 Wall Street Journal article, "Ted Haggard, the head of the 30-million strong National Association of Evangelicals, jokes that the only disagreement between himself and the leader of the Western world is automotive: Mr. Bush drives a Ford pickup, whereas he prefers a Chevy."

It's a shame that you can't share a cell one day with Dr. Dino the dummy. Tip: Pharyngula

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Halloween was fun for us and CP got to see some of the little ghosts and goblins when the LW handed candy to them. We had more than last year, which wasn't saying much, but it's a start. Hopefully more lights next year will do the trick. It helps that there are a few others who have kids on our little dead-end street. Next year will bring more decorations and an actual costume for CP. We expect a good time.

Soon we'll be off to Arkansas for a visit with my side of the family. It should prove to be interesting as there will be about 20 or so people in my parents' house at one time....and not all of them are really social animals. Having about 6 kids running around should make it fun though. We won't make it back there for xmas, so this will be our visit with everyone. Xmas in Mexico this year with some friends. Kino Bay and a beach baby xmas.

Watching and reading more news and views and I can't help but think sometimes that this country is headed down the crapper. The pendelum is still swinging. Our once good AZ senator, has all but sold out his last ounce of decency and pork-busting. Today a law was passed that allows indefinite detention without charge. Someone questions a candidate who is running on the family values platform about whether or not he spit on his ex-wife and he gets jumped. Umm, yeah....spitting on an ex-wife. Those are family values. Our fake-texan-in-chief seems to be moneying up to buy a 99,000 acre property in Paraguay. Do you think that mineral and water rights come with that? That's not just scenery. Maybe he'll flee there after he gets impeached and convicted of war crimes. I think there are probably some people left in that part of the world that speak German. They weren't part of a tour group either......

I called the AMTA today to renew my membership and was told that my license basically wasn't good enough to renew/upgrade my membership. I'd have to go and find my diploma and send in a copy. WTH? I had to do that to get my membership! The lady on the phone at the AMTA said that they had no record of my documents there. Nice. It seems that they didn't like the grandfathering that was done when the AZ licensure program was set up, so they won't recognize your license if it was issued before 12/31/05. I called the AZ massage state board office and the lady on the phone basically could have cared less. It wasn't a problem for her, so it wasn't a problem. She said that my problem was with the AMTA since they didn't consider the license valid. Having a license that the state issues not be recognized by one of the biggest massage therapy organizations in the country is not a problem? Hullloooooooo!! That's like someone earning a license to practice medicine in AZ, but being laughed out of the AMA. Probably wouldn't happen. I promptly wrote an email to the AMTA president and the president of the local chapter. The local chapter president was very interested to find this out and I have not heard back from the national folks. It looks like I'll be getting my membership from the ABMP. The AMTA membership decision folks can sod off, even if they do have a fancy convention every year. Oh wait, I helped pay for that for the past two years......

I called the ABMP (they support NPR) and they said that after I applied, they would check with the AZ license folks to make sure that my license was in good standing. They also said that there was no problem with my licensure in Arizona, no matter what the date. It's a state license and they accept it as such. I wouldn't be so miffed about this if I hadn't put all of that time into getting a Tucson license. Practical test, long written test, and haggling with city hall. That was back when you had to have 1000 hours of school, a medical checkup, and a TB test. Now, since AZ went statewide, all you have to have is 500 hours from some national chain community college in a strip mall and take a computer test. That, in my mind, officially puts massage therapists back down in between the hookers and hot dog vendors as far as the public's view of us is concerned. Before this, the shady folks had to set up shop on the outskirts of town.