Thursday, September 20, 2012

Speaking out about something Near and Dear to my Heart

Did you know it's PCOS Awareness month?! Neither did I! I'm weighing in on this kinda late, but I'd love to start the conversation. Got PCOS or know someone who does? Check out my raw video blog at My Wellness BlogThanks!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A Chemo Free Celebration

Mom and Dad Dancing at the Wedding for a Special 41st Anniversary Dance
Just a quick update now (more to come later, as usual).

My dad gets to take a BREAK from Chemo! That's pretty awesome. We're at the 7 month mark since his diagnosis now, 6 months of chemo and he's doing really really well, which gives us all hope that he'll be around to meet the grandkids at some point. (No, we're NOT pregnant- so don't think that was a "hint" and start emailing me a thousand questions.)  We're not out of the woods, but anyone who has ever dealt with this particular plague on our world (Cancer) knows that you fight your battles one at a time, and you celebrate every small victory that comes your way. Taking a break from Chemo before we figure out the next step is a big victory, so we're going to run with it.

He's looking forward to some travel to the East Coast to visit family, now that chemo isn't attacking his immune system - making air ports and air planes a much safer endevour. His positive attitude has seen him through a lot.

This brings to light a bigger idea for me.

It's once again made clear to me that EVERYTHING in my life has happened for a reason. You all know my adoption story by now. But let's go one step deeper. Look at my mom and dad. I'm sure when they met 40 some years ago, they never realized that Mom being a Nurse would be such a help to Dad during this time. No one anticipates cancer which makes "preparing for it" impossible. But honestly, they couldn't have been better equiped. Between their years of friendship, and all the challenges they've already been through, no one could have been better prepared for it to strike.

So, in honor of all that good news - find something to celebrate today, dear readers.


Friday, September 14, 2012

Weekend Plans - what's coming up!

So we have a pretty amazing weekend coming up! We've been very lucky in that My Sailor doesn't have to work all of the weekend, so we're filling it in with great things!

Starting off with Friday -

Friday -
I've got a full day of work ahead of me, followed by a trip to the Tukwilla mall! Yeah, I know. To my So Cal friends and family, a trip to the Mall isn't anything special, but when it's a GIGANTIC mall about an hour away, it's a big deal. We decided to return the extra ties we were left with after the wedding and use the dough to have a sweet night out! The highlight of the night will probably be Finding Nemo 3D! I can't wait! I got to see Finding Nemo opening night in the theaters the first time it came out and I'm sure the film has lent itself amazingly to 3D. It'll be an even more immersive experience. Can't wait!

Would it be weird if we got Sushi for dinner?

(Can't wait to see this little mermaid in 3D either!)

Saturday -
 I have a few hours of work to do today, but our big plan today is to hop over to our friend's house for a night of Zombie Board Game Goodness. MOZ would be proud.

Sunday -
 I don't have work day, but he might. Either way, we have free tickets to the Storm game in Seattle. I've never been to a women's basketball game, so I'm kinda excited! And the fact that they are offering free tickets to military is a bonus that might just make me a fan. I wonder if I'll enjoy watching as much as I loved playing... Probably not, but hey! Never know unless ya go!

Have a great, fire free, weekend everyone!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Wedding Week Recap - The Shopping and the Drive

I wish I had something more interesting to tell you about Thursday, August 9th, and our drive up to Disneyland from my hometown of Escondido, California.

It started at about 9:30am. We packed our bags, confirmed the all important dress delivery with my mom (who had been the keeper of the gown since it was purchased over a year earlier). Then we headed off to the mall on our way up to Anaheim for some... er... 'last minute shopping'.

Basically, My Sailor needed a suit to wear to the wedding. Opting not to pay over $100 for a rented tuxedo, he decided he'd rather invest in his own wardrobe, and why not? I mean, who isn't more comfortable sweating it up as they party in their own clothes than a rented suit that's been worn by 100 other men? Besides, I invested in a wedding gown. I felt he deserved to choose his wardrobe. Lucky for me, he has a pretty great fashion sense.

 After stopping at about 3 stores, we finally settled on a suit at JC Penny, and 2 shirts from Express. JC Penny was having a sale (yeah!) and Express offered the following discounts - 10% off for signing up for their email mailing list (done), 10% off for signing up for their text alerts (done), buy one get on 50% off on shirts, AND a 15% off Military Discount. All told, we ended up getting a 3 piece suit, 2 dress shirts, and his tie for about $250. And he can wear it again. Score!

Excited from our great deals, we headed up to Anaheim on a Thursday afternoon. The great thing about heading up mid day on a weekday is that traffic was at a minimum. Today the down side was that it was during a hot, dry summer in Southern California. In fact, it had been unusually warm, even for what was historically the hottest month of the year in Anaheim. On our way up, we passed a wild fire. Man, I don't miss those now that we live in Washington near the water.

We arrived just in time to meet My Sailor's sister and her family. It was really great to get some "one on one" time with family - not to mention we met at the Rainforest Cafe! My Sailor and I have a loyalty membership to the Landry's locations, so, not only did we have a great time with family/bridal party (his sister was a bridesmaid, her daughter was our flower girl, and her husband was a groomsman), but we also ended up earning enough points for a $25 gift certificate! (This came into play later during my Flying Solo night to be detailed on the August 10th post.) It was a great time.

Afterwards, we checked into the Disneyland Hotel. We stayed at the Adventure Tower and enjoyed a King sized bedroom (a splurge for us - we're usually queen bed folks). It was really great to walk in hearing music from Adventureland attractions and even Dinosaur! (I LOVED that movie!)

Thursday night was ours. We had intended to go into the parks, but instead, we ended up doing errands. We walked back to the Esplanade after confirming the number of military tickets we'd need to buy and headed over there to do just that and finish off family errands. After buying the tickets, we met up with my Jr. Bridesmaid and her dad (my 1/2 sister and bio dad) for a drink, some appetizers, and some ice cream. It turned into a fun way to spend the evening.

We finally headed back to our room around 10pm to crash. It was a long evening, but the bed was comfortable and we knew we had an early morning ahead of us. Disneyland was calling!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Reset Button, New Years, and Lab Tests

The Cutest Little Flower Girl Ever
 As you may have guessed this is yet another break from the wedding week re-caps. Don't worry, I will get back to them as promised. Even more wedding pictures are coming out, and they are more and more fun to see spring to life.

But before I go into sharing too many of them, I didn't want to get too behind where I am now.

I still haven't made a decision about the Endo study. Yes, I want to do it, but at the same time, I am taking My Sailor's feelings into account. He's behind me no matter what, but I wouldn't be a good team player if I didn't consider what is good for the whole team. (I won't pretend the idea of doing another endometrial biopsy is appealing even in the slightest bit. But I survived one, so I can survive another.)

I pushed pause on all that in order to focus on My Sailor's 29th Personal New Years (Aka Birthday)! I'll be posting photos from the party on another blog. We threw a Murder Mystery party - my first in YEARS and my first in Washington! While we were a bit short on players, everyone had a great time, so I'm sure the word will get around that these are fun things to do and by next Christmas, we'll have people asking when the next one is. :)

That said, I'm learning to hit the reset button on certain parts of my life to help with the stress levels. Reality is, My Sailor may never have "normal" hours. The poor guy is run ragged by his work in the Navy and honestly, I can't keep up with his hours, a full time job, household responsibilities and filling in other blanks, I have been literally running myself ragged. So it's time to hit the "reset button". I'm currently cutting back my work hours to NORMAL daytime hours. (See, the problem with working from home is that the office is ALWAYS open.) So I'm taking back my weekends and my sleep schedule in hopes that it will help with my sanity, my weight loss, my aches and pains, and other such issues. The doc just drew some blood today to run some tests, so I'm hoping my cholesterol stays down, and my insulin resistance stays cured since I opt not to take synthetic medications whenever possible.

At least that is step one.

Day 1 of step 1 - so far so good!

Oh - and here's your wedding teasers!

The Guys just hangin' out

Our Pixie gettin' her party on!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Wedding Week Recap - SeaWorld to Stone

Once we finally got our luggage squared away, we headed off to enjoy a day at SeaWorld! SeaWorld was running a wonderful promotion allowing active military families 1 free day in the park. It made for the perfect San Deigo get-a-way. For the price of parking, we got the day.

We didn't arrive at Sea World until almost noon, and we had some other plans for the evening, so we really just hit a few highlights. We sprayed ourselves down with sunscreen and headed in!

But no one can tour on an empty stomach and we are no exception to that rule. So we started out with grabbing lunch just inside the gates. Splitting a veggie wrap and a turkey wrap, we kept things fairly healthy. We washed it all down with a sampler of local beers and lots and lots of water. (It was pretty hot, but a breeze kept things enjoyable.) These little guys were tempting, but we opted for the calorie free way to enjoy them - via photo.
Dessert? Nah... It might bite back!

During lunch,we looked over a schedule and decided on a few "must see" shows that fell during our time frame to visit. We decided on the Shamu Show and Cirque De La Mer. The other things we had to hit up were the dolphins, the Shark Encounter, and Wild Artic. If Manta (the newest roller coast) was open, we'd take that one on too.

So off we went to find Shamu! There wasn't really a discussion about "Should we sit in the Splash Zone?" It was pretty much unanimous. What trip to SeaWorld would be complete without salty whale water all over you?

In the Splash Zone!

We got pretty prime seats, right in the middle of all the action - and the kids. The show is a short 20 minute show that focuses on the beauty of these animals, rather than focusing on educating people on them. While conservation is still an over-riding theme, I guess they've given up on trying to educate an audience that just wants to see 10 ton jumping mammals under controlled circumstances. But that said, the animals themselves did not disappoint! They were powerful, graceful, and, as always, inspiring.

And yes, we did get pretty wet. It was a warm day though and we dried almost by the time we'd exited Shamu stadium.

We explored the parks a bit more, taking in the wildlife....

like the Dolphins....

And, of course, Shark Encounter...

And some of my personal favorites of the Artic...
Before we sat down to get a little taste of Cirque via Cirque De La Mer! It was a great show (as always) including spectacular aerial stunts by seasoned performing artists. Unlike other Cirque shows, this has the added challenge of being outdoors. Open to the elements, the off-shore breeze and glare from the sun added a new set of variables to the well rehearsed act, which left us 'ooo'ing and 'ahhh'ing with the rest of the crowd.

Cirque De La Mer's Set

Atlantis, exterior
We capped off the day with a couple of fruit smoothies and a ride on Atlantis and Manta. Atlantis wasn't really worth the 15 minute wait (though it had so much potential to be truly amazing), but Manta (a roller coaster with a 45 minute wait) was well worth every second!

Dinner with Self-Righteous Brew

We got back from our excursion just in time to clean up and hook back up with my family for dinner at the local landmark, Stone Ale Brewery in Escondido.

Good beer. Good Food. Good Company. Beautiful Evening....

My Brother, Dad, Mom, Me and My Sailor

A Good time was had by all.

Next up - Massive shopping, a wild fire, and Checking-in to the Disneyland Hotel.