Saturday, March 31, 2007

It's a Go!

We've got the money!

Due to the extreme generosity of an unnamed, and totally unexpected mystery benefactor, we are now able to plow ahead full steam. "Whew" simply does not express the relief we feel. "Thank you so very much" does not even begin to express our gratitude.

When I got the call on Thursday I was rendered speechless. Anyone who knows me can attest to that it doesn't happen very often. :) There was a silly ass grin on my face for the rest of the day and I couldn't get any work done.

Anyway, what does this mean you're asking? Well, D. has one more test she needs to get done and she's going to try to do it this week. V. has his bloodwork and SA to do but he's assured me he's going on Monday for sure. His results should be back in by the end of the week I hope, but I'll make sure he asks when he's there so I can get everything faxed to me asap. I've emailed the clinic in Montreal and told them we're good to go and advised of upcoming CD1s and requested an appointment. D's cycle is due on the 19th and mine is due on the 17th, so time is of the essence, and timing looks really good.

That's all I know for sure.

Can you see my happy dance? :)))))))

Friday, March 23, 2007


It's been a long week. Yes, I know had a vacation 2 weeks ago but damn, I could use another. Compared to V. my week has been a breeze.

I'm all caught up at the office (that didn't take long), but this week has been blah. Besides feeling like I've getting a cold, it was CD1 on Wednesday and I've had the migraine from hell. I'm currently on day 3. I've taken the necessary meds, which alleviates the pain temporarily but invariably it comes back. I've got some server upgrades to do next week. We're changing the antivirus application that is running on the 12 servers I manage, so I need to uninstall the old one and install the new one, but because this has to be done after hours to minimize the disruption to the users. Sigh, why can't I have a normal 9-5 job? Better yet, why can't I just win the lottery so I don't have to work? ;)

V. on the other hand has had a terrible month. It was a month ago today that I was able to get into the doctor's office to get my CD3 bloodwork and such done because I was going on vacation. V. had great plans to get his done while I was away. However , due to circumstances beyond his control it just wasn't going to happen. Each week he has planned to go in. But, he's been on call for the last 2 weeks while his colleague has been on vacation and he's lucky to actually find time to sleep, let alone take a couple of hours to go out to the doctor (she's in the west end of the city) and get his tests done. I thought now that his colleague was back he'd have the latter part of this week to get that done as well as some of his backlog with work, and stuff at home and all. But it seems that when it rains, it pours, and he's got work stuff to deal with. I found out this morning he's back on call next week, but he assures me that with his colleague back at work, he's able to call on him to cover for a couple of hours so he can get out to the doctor.

I worry about him. He works way too hard. He's being pulled in multiple directions by many different people, situations, and tasks. Yes the man can multi-task, but just how long can he keep this up? He's not eating properly, nor is he sleeping enough. He's exhausted. He needs a vacation. But this time he needs one where he isn't expected to actually do work, just what he wants to do.

Guess I better go and buy more lottery tickets. :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Stolen from V.

I took this from V.'s blog.

Career Inventory Test Results

Extroversion |||||||||||| 36%
Emotional Stability ||||||||||||||| 50%
Orderliness ||||||||||||||||||||| 63%
Altruism |||||||||||||||||||||||| 73%
Inquisitiveness |||||||||||| 33%

You are a Guardian, possible professions include - counseling, ministry, library work, nursing , secretarial, curators, bookkeepers, dental hygienists, computer operator, personnel administrator, paralegal, real estate agent, artist, interior decorator, retail owner, musician, elementary school teacher, physical therapist, nurse, social worker, personnel counselor, alcohol/drug counselor.
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I'm Home!

Florida was great! Hot (82) and sunny the entire 12 days I was there with not a drop of rain. I'm sure you are all cursing me as it's been pretty cold here in Toronto and only warmed up over the last few days. I'm rested, relaxed, tanned and ready for V. and I to take this bull by the horns and get a move on. I know from both his posts and talking with him while I was away that he's had a hell of a week and didn't get anything done that he wanted to do, including getting into the doctor for his tests and such. However, we should that all done by the end of next week. If all goes according to plan, we may be able to start cycling by the end of April. All things that can be, are crossed.

For those of you who may not have realized, I wasn't just down in Florida sunning myself and relaxing. I went with my mother to the Regency House Spa in Hallandale Beach. This is an smaller, older establishment but it is the only spa in the US that is right on the beach apparently. Their mission is to encourage a healthy lifestyle. They do this by providing a vegan menu, a wide variety of fitness classes, and lectures. What and how much you do is entirely your choice. So, for me, my day essentially consisted of an hour on the treadmill at 7am while my mom went with a group out to the boardwalk to walk. Following breakfast at 8:30ish the resident doctor gave an hour lecture on health and wellness daily at 9:30. At 10:45 and 11:45 there was always an aerobic class and an aquafit class to choose from, each lasting 45 minutes. If the ocean was calm enough the aquafit classes were held in the ocean. Usually I chose one of the aquafit classes, although I did do a couple of the land classes during the week. Lunch was from 12:30-2. An afternoon aquafit class was offered at 2:15 everyday. The afternoon was usually when I spent the time relaxing in the sun reading. There was usually yoga in the afternoon and occaisionally pilates as well. Dinner was from 5:45-7:30pm. The evening had little scheduled. Sometimes they ran a movie on the tv in the lobby, or they had a presentation of some sort. Most people retired to their rooms. Some went out to the movies, or other things, usually if they had a car. Interspered into your days were any spa treatments you wanted. Everyone gets 2 coupons for each week they were there. Since we were there for 12 days, we got 4 coupons. These were good for swedish massage or facials. There were many other treatments one could have for additional cost if you wished.

Now the food. All of the food they buy is organic. Breakfast was always fruit. It was a serve yourself setup where you could choose from strawberries, blueberries, kiwis, grapes, mango, pineapple, papaya, canteloupe, honeydew or watermelon. You could also have the blandest oatmeal ever. However, once you added lots of cinnamon, the vanilla soy milk, and fruit (I chose strawberries) it actually was quite good. Because there is no dairy permitted your choices was soy milk or rice milk. Lunch varied. Usually there was a salad bar which was pretty much comprised of lettuce, a variety of sprouts, tomatoes, onions, carrots and beets. They would often add in a soup. Their soups were very good. One day there was pita and red pepper hummus which was excellent. Another day had half a whole grain bagel and a "wannabe" tuna salad or egg salad. I have no idea what either was actually made from and I didn't ask. :) Both were passable. Between breakfast and lunch and lunch and dinner, if you were hungry, you could get carrots and celery. Dinner was always served to us and ranged from soup or salad and some sort of entree. For the most part the meals were pretty good. You could always ask for a baked sweet or white potato, brown rice, lentils or quinoa at lunch or dinner. You could also get steamed vegetables if either meal just didn't appeal to you.

So, would I adopt a vegan diet? Not a chance. Would I go back to this spa? Probably. For the time I was there, it was just fine. But next time, I'd want to have a car available. As I said to a friend of mine, J., she's likely the one person I know who would truly enjoy and embrace this type of experience. I have other friends who would likely be willing to give it a go as well I think.

I haven't got any pix at the moment, but if I can borrow my mom's camera I'll see if I can post any pictures.

It's good to be home. :)

Sunday, March 11, 2007

There is a difference between having a life and living it.

Bear with me on this post for a moment please. I will tie it up in the end with respect to the normal subject matter.

Last night, I visited with the husband of a friend whom I have known since high school; she is more sister to me than friend. He and his siblings all have sickle cell (in fact he has lost five siblings to the disease) but that is not what nearly killed him this week. The fact of the matter is, they still do not know what nearly killed him and whatever it is has only recently been halted in its attempts. He lays in an ICU room at St. Mike's in Toronto, isolated from everyone by surgical masks, surgical gowns and rubber gloves. He is, now, able to sit up and speak to you, laugh at jokes, sip soup through a straw and think towards the future. On Tuesday, he barely remained with us.

Our daughter, teenager that she is, thinks she is immune to the ills of the world and that she is invincible as she walks through it. I took her with us last night (we went down with another high school friend that is the closest woman to me next to my wife and daughter) in order for her to see the frailty of humanity. We are not immune. We are not superhuman. We are fragile and we can die. It was a first step in our intervention of her life so that she can truly live, not just be alive.

Promises were pledged between by friends and I in that room (of which only two can visit at a time) that we all intend to do our best to keep. Trips for the parents, gatherings with the families, communication all around. We now live within fifteen minutes of each other yet Pam and I have seen other friends over forty minutes away more often. When did we all get THAT busy? It's not right, it's not good; and it's not healthy. And if you saw me, and knew what I liked eating, you'd laugh that the "h" word came out of my mouth.

When Pam and I first got together, I was concerned about what my ex would do if we had a child and what my first born would feel like so I asked Pam that we hold off. 20/20 hindsight really sucks because I still feel very responsible for our current position today. What ifs go through my head all the time even though I know it would not solve anything and does not help. It was not only our daughter that needed a reality check last night; I got one in spades.

Without prejudice, without, malice and without ill intent I deliver a message to everyone listening or not: It just doesn't matter! It does not matter your concerns, it does not matter your hangups, it doesn't matter your help or lack of it, it doesn't matter your opinion, it doesn't matter your fears, it doesn't matter the statistics, it doesn't matter our chances... none of it matters.

What matters is that my wife WANTS this and she almost NEVER asks me for anything. This is important to her and, despite my wanting it just as much as she does, that is all that matters to me. Being married by a Rabbi was important to her so we went through the pain and process to make it happen. Being together was important to her so we persevered through many hardships to make that happen. Getting certain things we have was important to her so some things we worked hard together to make happen and some, despite her mild protests (because she really wanted it) I just made happen for her.

Having our child (and it will be OUR child no matter what) is important to her. That is all I need to know. Look for the announcement in the future because we will make it happen. We've done "life"; it's time we got back to living it. Anyone that wants to come along for the ride is welcome. Everyone else, adios. It's been fun, but we have a train to catch. There are no guarantees in life but I will not be sitting around in our senior years wondering what if. We will exhaust every avenue open to us and we will succeed. That is all that matters.

That's all that should, don't you think?


Friday, March 09, 2007

Well, it's right off the rails now.

My week, instead of getting progressively better, fell right off the tracks mimicking the CN derailment in Ajax last week. Everything that could disrupt my week did. The biggest time-waster of them all was having to deal with an "ass"inine, ignorant appliance guy to try to get the stove/oven repaired or replaced. He wasted three days of my life while I sat around and waited for him to arrive. When he did, he had the audacity to cop an attitude with me. Anyone that knows me knows I despise ignorance so he got it in spades, both barrels. Needless to say, he won't be stepping foot into this house again and the owner is looking to replace our appliances with new ones.

Add that to a work backlog that has kept me hopping, my sister's moves, the car in the mechanic shop and shuttling the child back and forth to school (we've decided to make a change in that respect but she does not know that yet), and it has made for a very full week. Unfortunately, it has also made for a very stressful week and (TMI little brother), I know I won't be able to give it my all when it comes to romancing the plastic cup. I just do not have the concentration or right frame of mind to perform adequately. And I am not doing this more than I have to, not without dinner, a movie and some assistance (or two, or three, or...)

So, I am back on-call at work next week and I have no backup as my partner is on vacation for the March Break. As such, next week is not possible for me to take any time. Since tmy vacation essentially hit the proverbial fan, I am commuting it to the week following March Break. I will be relaxed, I will have the time and no outside commitments or distractions and I will have my wife cheering me on from the hallway with pompoms. OK, she probably will refuse to actually do that but whatever helps in my head, right? :)

Unfortunately too as a casualty of this disastrous week, nothing I planned to have done before she returned has been done. I hope to clean the house up nicely this weekend and maybe get the office organized. Beyond that (i.e. basement and the garage) will have to wait until I truly take some time off. OK, must run now to get the child in early as she has a science project to sign up for (her element of choice is Copper, as her dear old dad suggested). Much ado to blog later, or something like that.


Tuesday, March 06, 2007

A mid week update

Well, it appears that I do have access to a computer here. I didn't bring my laptop even though I could have used it, but there is a computer set up in the lobby for guests to use. So, I've been able to check my email, even though I can do it on the Blackberry. Yes, I've got it with me. Not so much for work, although I've had to forward some emails to my manager to deal with, but because it's also my cell phone and V. and I have been constantly talking with Messenger, as he's already mentioned.

Anyway, today is day 6, the half way point, of my vacation. For the most part it's been great. I've gotten rest which is what I really needed. But I've also gotten in excercise (and sun)which I've also needed. I've managed to get up and get onto the treadmill every morning for 45 minutes and then after breakfast I've basked in the Florida sunshine until it's time to do one of the aquafit classes. That's all I'll tell you about for now. I'll fill you all in about the food (vegan), the guests, and everything else when I get back.

That's all for now. Ciao.

Monday, March 05, 2007

It's only Monday.

Hard to miss my wife when we are Crackberry messengering each other daily. She is having an alright time in Florida, not without some discoveries. I am having an alright time in the cold here in Ajax; no discoveries worth mentioning. The child has stopped herself from calling out to her mother a number of times; once when falling down the stairs (she's fine) and another time to ask her opinion on something. As always, I am restless at night when she is not home and not on MSN for me to talk to her so I am not sleeping right. I also rarely make it to bed as there is no point.

Anyhoo, my previously well-scheduled week off has gone to hell in a handbasket as life intrudes on the best laid plans. I am at work today playing catch-up and clean-up. I am home tomorrow but not free to relax as the oven repair dude will be over. Wednesday I am helping my sister finish moving. I still have to schedule my doctor's appointments and figure out when I can get out to the west end. Oh yeah, somewhere in all of that I have to find time to do the things I took four days off to do in the first place. (EDITORS NOTE: Almost forgot I have a major feud brewing with Rogers Inc. that I have to go to their headquarters and calmly persuade them to the correct line of thought: We are wrong sir, you are correct. Things will be escalated as need be if I do not get satisfaction for their latest screwup.)

Ah well, such is life. All that is important is that I get into to do my blood work and sperm analysis so that we stay on track. My wife is depending on me and I do not intend to let her down.


Thursday, March 01, 2007

When the cat's away... (A TMI Production)

The mouse will take a few days off to clean up the garage and basement. :)

Now I understand why my dear wife scolded me for not keeping up on her blog. Her public apology was nice to see but not asked for or really necessary. I am admittedly a very quiet guy at times that comes out of his shell to socialize and party. I am also a very passionate guy and can be quite intense at times (though I am much better since the moment I met Pam). My only issue is that while we are on this journey, while we shoot for our dreams, we have to always keep in mind that time did not stop for us and that the rest of the world lurches forward. We have a child that requires (and indeed sometimes clamours for) attention. We have a roof, and vehicles, and food and other life necessities (yes, reality TV IS a necessity) that require our attention. AND we have the daily foibles at work that wants us to jump off of a building (or throw someone off).

So yes, I get a little agitated when she loses sight of our current life in search of new life. But I love her, so no worries. Have a great rest honey and enjoy the time with Mum.

Now, for my part, I am on-call this week so I never sleep properly. Worse, when Pam is not in the house, I don't sleep fully at all. Partly because she is the keeper of the alarm clock and partly because until she gets back, she is constantly invading my thought patterns. Very annoying at 3AM. Anyhow, the child and I will endure (she was crying big tears when Pam left, don't know the reason, females!), and we promised not to do take-out every night so we will figure those things out too.

On the quest for baby front, I have to make some time during my time off to head west to see our doctor and get my tests updated; all of them. As such, I have an appointment with a needle and a monkey. :)

I also am going to go see my family doctor for a routine checkup. I need to inform him of my current sugar levels (diabetes runs in the family and I am high risk), have him check my dry skin (I'm whiter than usual which is not normal for a black guy), have him check my sprained/strained muscle/tendon on my left hand (which I insist on re-injuring all the time) and have him check the first digit of the fourth finger on each hand. They has been hurting for some time and refuses to heal so I admit that I am a little past worried about why (and why the same joint on the same finger on both hands).

Add all of that to numerous errands that will take me back and forth across the GTA (car stuff in Mississauga, visit father and cousin in Brampton, mother in Milton, mechanic in Scarborough, possibly friend(s) in Newmarket, geek stuff in Scarborough and Markham and stuff near home in Ajax) and I have a busy couple of weeks. Oh yes, there is also the ever looming cleaning out of the garage and basement in time for the start of April and the biggest, baddest Garage Sale that Ajax has ever seen. There is a lot more going up for sale than our friends may realize. Plus, a couple of friends and family may add their items to the mix. I also want to bond with the neighbours and see if they want to co-ordinate into a full street session so that we get maxmium exposure and traffic. It is also a good way to meet everyone. We have a nice mixture on our street and in our neighbourhood so it will be nice to meet everyone. Hmmm, maybe a nehigbourhood garage sale! Oh yeah, now I am thinking BIG!!!

OK, I am done for today. Yapping on the Crackberry with Pam in her 26C weather in Florida and watching the storm whipping past the 17th floor windows here are not conducive to my idea of fun. Heading out to pick up the child from school and get our butts back into Ajax (home of the 20-car train derailment on CN Rail). Take it easy everyone and I will post again later.