Journal Entry

It was a really busy week, last week. Some of the highlights have shown up already on T–‘s and N–‘s blogs, but I feel like I’ve got to fill out the form, anyway.

Tuesday, September 18th
Tuesday morning I had a doctor’s appointment. I’ve been getting high blood pressure readings for about a year now (ever since I learned about AB, really), and it got to the point where people were threatening me with sad faces if I didn’t go get checked out.

So I told my boss I needed the morning off, and that I’d maybe take the whole day. My appointment wasn’t until 9:00, though, so I was looking forward to sleeping in. At 6:30, T– came crashing through the bedroom door with a screaming AB and said, “Here, hold her for me while I get a rag.”

I sat up, grabbed the baby, and noticed all the blood pouring out of her mouth. She had fallen while playing in the living room, and somehow ripped that bit of skin connecting the upper lip to the gums, and it was bleeding like crazy. I got her to calm down while I was holding her, and then T– got her cleaned up, but she spent all day going through that cycle. She’d chew on a toy or suck on a pacifier and it would start bleeding again, and she’d start crying and make a huge mess, and then we’d calm her down and try to get the bleeding to stop.

Really, it wasn’t that big of a deal, but it was a lot of work, for both of us. So, yeah, I ended up taking the whole day off. I did go in for my appointment, though, which happened to be during the worst time for T–. But, y’know, what can you do?

Doc said I looked good apart from the blood pressure, and gave me a month’s worth of samples for a BP medicine that he said (and N– confirmed) is a really good one. I’ll probably be on it for a couple years, if not for life, but it’s supposed to be really helpful.

And, while we’re dealing with AB troubles all day, we also know we’ve got the marriage class to go to that evening. Last week’s was a tough one, discussing all the things each of us do that hurt the other. Not fun to discuss, not even fun to think about. We both had a lot of trouble getting motivated to do the homework, and we’d kind of put it all off to do during the day Tuesday. Instead, we spent the day chasing the baby, so we were really unprepared for class.

Anyway, right around 5:00, K– and N– called and offered to bring over dinner. That was fun, and brightened up my afternoon considerably. We had fajitas from Taco Cabana, and chilled for a few, then headed up to the church when D– showed up to watch the baby.

I had an uncomfortable experience in class that night, over some confusion as to how “voluntary” the sharing portion of the class was. Turns out, it’s not voluntary, but by the time I learned that, I was in a pretty embarrassing situation, with a big ol’ spotlight on me. That sucked. Anyway, at least now I know for future classes.

I’m glad we went to that class, though. Out of all of them, I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s the most valuable one we do, because it was good to hear everybody talking about the difficulty they had with the homework, and discussing such things. That was definitely worth being there for.

Wednesday, September 19th
Wednesday night, K– and D– and I went to the movies. We’d talked about going to see Dragon Wars and/or Shoot ’em Up. Then we learned that Dragon Wars was a Korean-made, low-budget cheese fest, and decided to save our eight bucks (which probably is code for “go see it when D–‘s not around to make fun of us”). So, Shoot ’em Up it was.

B– and E– should get it and watch it on DVD, when it comes out (unless they have a strong desire to see it apart from my recommendation). As for everyone else…I can’t think of another human being I could recommend that movie to. K– and D– both enjoyed it, but….yeah. It’s ludicrous. It’s absurd, and probably the most violent movie I’ve ever seen. Crass, out the ass. But it was fun.

After the movie, around 9:30, we came out of the mall to find K–‘s driver-side window smashed out. Someone was probably trying to go for the GPS unit mounted on his windshield, and spooked when his car alarm went off, because there was nothing missing from the car. But, yeah, whoever did it won’t be caught, so K– is stuck with a $150 glass bill. The security guard who filled out the paperwork on it said he’d had a lot of windows broken out, in his time, and recommended a particular repair crew. K– got them out to his place Thursday night, and got that taken care of. Ugh.

Thursday, September 20th
Thursday night we had the church picnic. They claim to do one every month in the summer, but I don’t think it actually happens that often. Anyway, T– heard about this one and I didn’t have any good excuses to get out of it, so we went out to a private park across town around 6:30, and had some pot luck. T– was kind enough to make me a sandwich beforehand, so I wasn’t entirely at the mercy of the old church ladies’ cooking.

In addition to pot luck, the theme for the dinner was “Pie Contest!” (The exclamation mark is part of the title, not my own.) T– baked two apple crumble pies for the event (blogged on her MySpace), and they were amazingly delicious. I’m not a constant fan of fruit pies of any sort, but this one was awesome. It could be the massive quantity of brown sugar melted over the top that won me over. I’m no food critic, but that strikes me as a winning combination.

Anyway, I tried about seven pies. Everybody voted, and they said we’d learn the results on Sunday. So, for narrative reasons, I’ll save that information until I write about Sunday. HaHA! Building a little suspense in the ol’ blog, I am. A writer practices good writing techniques, always. That’s the rule. But, yeah, anyone who’s read T–‘s MySpace already knows the answer. And pretty much anyone who knows her.

Friday, September 21st
For reasons inexplicable, Friday night was the OU game. I know, I know, they’re a college team, but yeah…they played on Friday night. Against Tulsa, who was supposed to have a pretty good passing offense. Nobody was worried, but we’d heard things, y’know?

We had dinner with K– and N– at Freddy’s (always a good time), and then I went over to their place to watch the game. Tulsa scored first, and in the first six minutes game-time, Tulsa put up 14 points. That was a little alarming. Of course, they also used up all of their timeouts for the half, to do that. K– pointed out that they probably had to do that to get their offense some rest, which was a point well made. It was clear they were pulling out all the stops to make a statement early, but once the timeouts were gone, our guys just rolled over them. OU’s final score was in the sixties. Fun.

Afterward, I hung around and watched a couple episodes of Dr Who with K–, who’s trying to get into the series. It’s a good show. I’m looking forward to seeing more.

Saturday, September 22nd
Saturday I’d offered to spend at home, with T–. We’d had a wildly busy week, and we were planning to watch two games on Sunday, so it seemed wise to just set aside some home time. I mowed in the morning, and then we went grocery shopping together. We spent most of the afternoon working on homework for our marriage seminar, and I’m glad we did. We covered a lot of material, and even though this was pretty sensitive stuff, it was nothing compared with the week before, so we were able to talk pretty freely. That was a good experience.

In the evening, most of our work done, we watched a little TV, and then I decided to run up to Lowe’s and grab some storage stuff to help organize the garage, and my office closet. I’ve mentioned a lot of work on the garage recently, and there was really one last major change I wanted to make, rearranging some stuff to make more room for car doors to open. To do that, we needed a new place for T– to keep her catalogs and other work stuff, and she’d been wanting a closing cabinet for that for a while. I’ve also been wanting a set of stacking drawers to organize the cables and connectors and computer parts crammed in my office closet, pretty much since we moved into the house.

So, I ran out and bought all that stuff. If you haven’t shopped for storage solutions, you’d probably be surprised how much they cost. I managed to find what I wanted, though, and brought it home to put together. After that…well, I get a little manic when I’m working on a project, wanting to get it done, so I got the cabinet built, and then I took it out to the garage (and it’s probably 9:00 at that point), and then I spent some time rearranging things out there, and I finally made myself stop working on that to come inside and watch some TV with T–.

Then I ended up, a couple hours later, setting up the drawers in my office closet and working on that until one in the morning. It’s just who I am. Don’t judge me.

Anyway, Saturday was a lot of work, but I’m impressed how much I got accomplished. The improvements in the garage and the closet were awesome, and like I said, I’m really glad we got the homework done.

Sunday, September 23rd
Sunday morning, after church, we went to K– and N–‘s to watch the Vikings/Chiefs game with a bunch of friends. B– is a long-time Vikings fan, and as I mentioned back in preseason, our old hero Adrian Peterson is now starting running back for the Vikings, so we were all interested in watching it. They also invited my sister’s family over, because J– is a big Chiefs fan (and, y’know, just for the opportunity to hang out).

Early in the game, the Vikings were rocking on the Chiefs. Enough so that B– started cheering for the Chiefs because he felt sorry for J–. Unfortunately, about twenty minutes after J– left (S– had a photoshoot to get to, and needed J– to watch the kids), the Chiefs turned it around and tore up. It was an exciting game. Adrian Peterson was amazing (the commentators kept saying he was carrying the rest of the team).

K– grilled hotdogs for lunch, and they were awesome. T– brought some leftover apple pie, and it was just a big ol’ party. Everyone had a good time.

After that, I borrowed K–‘s distribution spreader and took a bag of grass seed he’d picked up for me, and headed home. In church Sunday morning, they’d said that the pie contest winner would be announced Sunday night. So, T– really wanted to go to that, but I had so much stuff I still needed to get done before the weekend ended (and that necessarily meant “before the Cowboys game started”). So I dropped her off at church, then went home to seed my yard.

The new spreader worked way better than the old drop spreader I’d used, and I was able to seed the whole back yard in about ten minutes. I then broke out some insect control stuff that’s also supposed to be spread like that (which I never used, because the old spreader took so long), and put that out, front and back. D– came over early in that process, asking me if I wanted to hit Best Buy, but I told him I was busy. So he pulled out his laptop and read some webcomics on my couch while I did yard work.

Anyway, got all the poison down and set up a sprinkler, and then grabbed a quick shower, and was able to pick up T– just a few minutes after church ended. That was a lot accomplished in one hour.

And when I showed up to pick her up, she was proudly brandishing her silver spatula! She got second prize in the contest, which was much deserved. If you haven’t already, send her a congratulations for that.

We dropped her off at the house, then D– and I ran up to the barbecue place next to Blockbuster and grabbed a small family deal to go. Chopped brisket and hot links, which was enough for all of us to have heaping plates, and still enough for my lunch on Monday. Awesome stuff.

Then K– called to say he couldn’t make it over, so D– and I watched the game together. It was an incredible game. Both teams were playing really well (Dallas vs. Chicago). In the second half, though, Romo just laid it down. I think we won 34-10. Woot woot.

Monday, September 24th
So, anyway, Monday after I got home from work, I went to Best Buy with D–. He’d finished Bioshock and the anime series he was watching, and needed something new for entertainment. We looked through all the games, but the only one that really tempted was Madden ’08 for the Wii. Then we went and looked at high-end TVs instead. That was a lot of fun. He’s still needing to make the upgrade to HD, and his small apartment (and bachelor lifestyle) makes a big ol’ wall-mount LCD the perfect choice.

Anyway, we were there for a while, then came home and T– made us some chicken crescent squares that are just awesome. It’s a recipe she started on just after we got married, and I always love it. Yumm. After dinner, it was already 8:00-ish. We watched the season premier of How I Met Your Mother, and an episode of Rules of Engagement which is another show in the same vein, but it’s got David Spade. Then we watched the season premier of Heroes, which didn’t really disappoint.

Then D– went home, and I did the last little bit of homework I had to fill out, and then it was bedtime.

Tuesday, September 25th
Yesterday, I found a chunk of free time in the afternoon, and spent a lot of it typing up the many pages of Royal Holiday that I had handwritten (and I’m starting to think it’s going to have to switch back to “Royal Holiday,” which is a shame, because I was looking forward to trying to push the short-format novel). I’m nearly caught up on the typing part, and the longhand part is nearly done, so that’s the sort of news that appeals to my manic drive to complete a project. Wahaa!

Around 4:00, I got a call from T– saying she’d just heard from the people leading our marriage seminar with a reminder that we were supposed to provide the snacks this week. Ack! I suggested chips and salsa, because I knew we had the stuff handy, and it feeds a crowd. She ran up to the store and got some extra chips, and the stuff to make guacamole. It was a real rush to get everything done before the class started at 6:30, but she managed. And she made some delicious grilled cheese sandwiches for D– and me. She’s the whole package.

So, we left AB with D–, and went to class for two hours. Our snacks were a huge hit. I think everyone there complimented either the salsa or the guacamole, if not both. So, y’know, good for us. Woohoo.

I got home, and I was feeling too socialized, so I retreated to my office for some video games. I played Heroes for a couple hours, and made it to bed around 10:30.

And, amazingly enough, I’m finally finished with that update.