Iwo Gima

Iwo Gima
Marine Corps Marathon

Thursday, May 28, 2015

May 28, 2015

Today was a day to get things done, and we did ...

I did get up for a short and fast 10 miles on the bike - I say "fast" as a reflection on my speed, as it was a little faster than I usually go. At one point, while circling Fiesta Island (which isn't really an island), I was at the last part of the four mile loop. I was feeling pretty good and had a good pace of about 17.5 mph going. Then I looked to my left and here came this lady (at least I think it was a lady) and she blew my doors off. I didn't let it get me down though, and just kept on going. The head wind was minimal and there were things to do, so I simply headed back home and kept the ride down to the 10 miles I had planned.

Jason had an appointment today, and also stopped in to see a couple of folks we know. It was a very nice visit for him, for a couple of reasons, and mostly because he simply went on his own. He didn't even take Gracie with him. This tells me that his confidence level is getting very strong and he doesn't mind getting out by himself. Linda and I stayed at home with the dogs, and did some planning and strategic work. We need to get some mirrors for the house, and Linda has requested that she be given the control of what actually goes into the bathrooms. The contractors were more than happy to allow her to do this, as were Jason and I, and I think it made her feel more useful with the overall project. Anyway, she has found some and already purchased some and now all we need to do is get them to the house when they're ready to be installed.

The other big thing that went on today was that Anthony and Angelica are moving out of their rented house and moving into their own house. This is great, except that Linda and I have (had?) some items stored at their place, in their garage. The house is just about ready to be handed over, so we need to get all our things out, so we went up there today, after stopping off at Jason's place in Fallbrook. We went up to Fallbrook to check on some of the mirrors I was talking about earlier. We got up to the house, in Fallbrook and the tile work is probably 85% completed and it really looks good. I think Jason is going to love the way his bath and shower turned out, as he wanted it to look sort of cave-ish, and they did a great job of getting it there.

From the Fallbrook house we went over to Anthony's and picked up a bunch of our stuff, though not all of it. We have a storage unit, so we can move it there until we need to get it to the new house. The moving of the boxes and things went smoothly enough, though I have to admit, my back was getting a little tired by the end of the day. I don't twist and turn as easily as I used too, I guess. Besides moving our things, I was also assisting Anthony with moving some of his things, and it is all good now.

We finally went to our storage unit and pulled everything out of the van and put it in to the storage unit. That really didn't take too long, and I was glad, since I was running out of steam, and I felt pretty much like we had been moving pretty hard all day. Linda was moving almost as many of the boxes as I was, so I know she was getting a bit worn down too. I think we'll both sleep soundly tonight. Thank you, for the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

May 27, 2015

Today was a very nice day for me, personally, and I think a good day for Jason and Linda, too. The girls got off to school, this morning, and a couple of hours later I took Jackie to an appointment, while Linda took care of a couple of other errands. Jason had an appointment of his own, so our morning was pretty full of activities.

Since the two of them were going to be out for a couple of hours,  I decided that it would be good to get out and go for another bike ride, and so I did. The weather down here is still a bit unsettled, and very cloudy, with the biggest impact to a bike ride being the wind. Probably no more than a 5 mph breeze with some gusts, yet riding 20+ miles against it and with cross winds, tended to make it a little more of a challenge. I managed to get the ride in and back home just before Jason returned. Linda was going to be out with her friend until almost 17:00 (5pm), so we really didn't expect to see her any sooner than that.

Those few hours of just laying around and relaxing felt great. I don't get many days where there are that many hours of nothing scheduled. Jason and I had lunch and the animals were taken care of, but for the  most part I just kicked back and relaxed. After Linda came home we had a few things to do, as she bought some things for the new house, and they had to be taken care of, but it was still kind of nice and easy. Linda and I later walked over to the local strip mall, and walked around a bit, with the best part being that we didn't buy anything. The entire day felt like a vacation day or something.

Tomorrow we have some work to do, and we'll be busy for most of it, so I don't know if I'll be able to get a ride in, but that's okay. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

May 26, 2015

A very nice day for us today, though very full. It began with the girls getting up and getting ready for school, and with that Grandma (Linda) and Grandpa (me) were busy getting them up and dressed, while also getting their breakfast and lunches ready. We've actually gotten it down to a pretty good routine, and it runs pretty smooth - which is good since the school year is ending (that's sarcasm, for those that couldn't tell). Once the new year gets started it will be starting all over again, and you know what... we wouldn't change it for the world.

Once the girls were at school, Jason and Linda had some running around to take care of, and that lasted for a little over an hour. This gave me a chance to take care of a couple tasks at the house, and to do some catch up on some of my emails and FB posts. Well, we also had a chance to get some exercising in, though not what we normally do. I look forward to getting back into a more regular routine of riding my bike, and right now it just doesn't seem to work. While Jason and Linda were at Balboa Hospital they picked up Tae Harris, Wounded Warrior Recovery Coordinator and brought her back to the house. After a short visit, Linda, Tae and I went to lunch. For the past couple of months we have been wanting to go to lunch with Tae, and each time something comes up. Unfortunately she is moving to Texas, to be closer to family, and she is going to be missed, though she has promised to come back for visits.

The lunch with Tae was great, and right after that we took off to go up to Fallbrook, to see Linda's parents. Linda's parents were traveling back from Arizona and wanted to get a chance to see Jason's house. They were already on their way, yet we managed to get to the property only a short time after they did - and no, I didn't drive excessively fast, we just had a great tail wind.

We toured the house and we were very pleased at all the progress: the tile work and granite counters are really looking great. About the only down aspect for today is that we found out that our son David, apparently had to have a surgery today. Fortunately is wasn't a major operation, but I still don't like to hear that any of our sons has to go through these kinds of things. David is doing fine and is expected to be back up and moving around in a matter of a short period of time.

We got back home and Joselyn had already gotten our Taco Tuesday meal going, and actually just about finished - our timing was really good. The girls were happy to see us, and it was nice to get a chance to sit back down and relax for a little bit. Tomorrow isn't going to be as busy, and who knows, I might even get a bike ride in. Thanks, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Monday, May 25, 2015

May 25, 2015 - Memorial Day

Today is a day of honoring the men and women who have served the country and especially a time to remember those that gave paid the ultimate sacrifice. This weekend is seen by a large number of people as a chance to get out and go to the beach or have a picnic, and yet a large number of them don't take the time to think about all the blood that was spent, so they could do those things. I am continuing to hope that we, as a country, can continue to grow and survive, as this great experiment is still needed in the world. God bless America is needed more than ever.

On  Sunday, Jason and I spoke at both services of the Point Loma Presbyterian Church, and had a wonderful reception from the congregation. We were invited to be a part of their Memorial Day worship service and it went very well. Linda was recognized as a strong member of the team and was sitting in the front pew, while we had participated in a "dialogue sermon"  with Pastor John Powell. We greeted people, as they were leaving the church, and so many of them thanked us and made the comment that we were inspirational, with most of that coming from Jason. He talked about how he was injured and how he has been able to survive with his strong determination and wanting to be there for his girls. I spoke how our lives have changed, and how our faith in God has sustained us. Over all, I think it was as good for us, as it was for the congregation.

Last night Jason, Linda and I went to the Rolling Stones concert, via a gift of tickets from the City Council of San Diego, or at least that is what I was led to believe. We had a great time and saw some things we had never seen before, like a bunch of really old guys jumping around and looking kind of silly, not caring what anyone else thought about them. And those were just the people in the audience. The "Stones" were just about as good as you'd expect them to be, as they are professional, and it was impressive how much noise they can still generate. Actually, the level of noise was a major factor in why we had to leave a little early. Jason can not tolerate the decibels, like he did before and unfortunately his discomfort got to him - and he really wanted to see the entire show. We're all glad to have had the chance to go, and will remember it.

The other great thing, this weekend was that we took the girls up to the house in Fallbrook, and found it has come along way with the roof being completed, and the stucco almost finished; the interior is also coming along very nicely with a large portion  of the tile work being  completed, and it looking very much like a house. The girls were very excited to see what their rooms look like and Jackie in particular was dancing around the great room and dinning area. We are all becoming more excited and looking forward to the dedication, coming up in August. What we're doing now is trying to figure out just what we're bringing to the new house, and where it is all going to go. These are the kinds of puzzles we like to work on... ;-) I guess this would be a good opportunity to simply say, "thank you!" to the Gary Sinise Foundation, as without them, this would not have been possible. They have shown Jason, and our family, that they really care and are willing to go out that extra mile to help us. Please remember to keep them in your prayers.

Otherwise these past couple of days have been busy with things to do, or places to go (like the concert) and we've been getting to bed later than usual. Even today, working on catching up on email, Facebook, and my blog - my computer started acting up and for some reason it was not allowing me to get anything posted, or entered. My guess is that it was a network issue, and the bandwidth just wasn't great enough. I do recall hearing that the cable companies were going to start slowing data speeds down, so perhaps that is what has happened, and it makes it more of a challenge to do things, unless you want to pay for premium service. But that is just what I heard.

Tomorrow the girls go back to school, after a long weekend, and we get back to a regular routine. We have been experiencing significant moisture in the atmosphere, and that is a good thing. I just wish it would rain, and stop with the drizzle. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Friday, May 22, 2015

May 22, 2015

Coming into Memorial Day weekend our attention turns to the Military and all those who have paid the ultimate price for our freedom. We are a nation of people who have shown a tremendous ability to fight with ourselves over some very petty issues; as well as some very tough issues. There are those among us who feel they have all the right ideas and that anyone who thinks differently should be taken away and given a mental reworking to get their thinking straight. We have some very patriotic people and we have some who really don't like our government, yet don't know how to cast a vote at election time. Our country is made up of a vast mix of different types and attitudes and we still manage to keep our country and this great experiment going. Most of it because of the ability of this great nation to create men and women who will defend the Constitution.

Yesterday we went up to Fallbrook and got a chance to see the house and all the progress that has continued on it. We now have a full roof, and it really looks good. It has been raining quite a bit lately, so I'm glad to see it there. There is also a great deal of progress with some of the interior work that has to be done before the "finishing" work can get started. Linda took some pictures (I am so glad that she remembers to take pictures - I would tend to just walk around with the camera and never use it). The ground was trenched because of the utility work that is going on, so we went up and brought the paramobile with us. Jason's wheelchair would not have been able to make it around. The main topic of discussion for this visit was landscaping and what we should expect, as well as some of the thoughts as to what we wanted. Personally, I think it was a good meeting up there, and more will be seen, as it progresses.

It was a busy day with the girls yesterday and by the end of the day I was just a little tired out, so I didn't post anything. One of the things we did last night was to have a family movie night and we let the girls stay up until almost 20:45 (8:45pm) to watch The Velveteen Rabbit (there was no school the next day).  They had not seen it and it is a great story, especially just before going to bed. I made a bunch of popcorn (and a mess in the kitchen) and everybody had a great time. After getting them to bed I worked on the kitchen and Linda worked on some laundry. As it was, we still didn't get to bed until almost 23:00 (11pm), and we were happy though tired.

Today, we got to deal with more rain, though, like yesterday, it wasn't much, just enough to be a bother. Towards the later parts of the day it started to clear up and was better, so we still had a good time. I took the girls to the park, a new destination for us. There really wasn't much there, and in fact, less than what we have seen at other parks. The girls, however, felt that it was a  "new" park and had a great time running around and playing on the play structures. We stayed there for about 90 minutes and then we needed to get back home, as I needed to make a trip to Costco.

Linda and I went to Costco, while the girls napped. Joselyn and Jason were at the house, so we knew they would be okay, if they should wake up (they didn't) while we were gone. Linda is becoming a champ at finding very cool stuff, as she found a copy of Sound of Music, while at Costco, so we had to purchase it. Our old VHS copy just doesn't cut it, nor do we have a player to play it.

The rest of the day was pretty relaxed, then Jason received a phone call. Jason had been selected to receive tickets to go see the Rolling Stones concert, on this coming Sunday. Actually, there were three guys to get two tickets each,  and when they were attempting to distribute the tickets only two of the guys took advantage of the tickets. I felt sorry for the one guy who lost out on his tickets, but on the other hand it made it possible for all three of us to go now. What they did was to take those two last ticket and gave one to Jason and one to the other guy, so that they now had three each. Prior to that third ticket Linda had already said Jason and I should go, so we were so very happy when we found out that she could come with us.

The end of the day was nice and everyone got to bed at a reasonable hour - sort of. I tend to stay up a little later because of the blog and Linda stays up to help edit. Tomorrow I am hoping to get a chance to get a short ride in, but that remains to be seen. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

May 20, 2015

A very nice couple of days for us, as yesterday brought us some nice clear weather, and the temperature stayed around 70 degrees. The girls had a great time at school and with the family at home, and Jason made a little more progress with both Gracie and Kojak. The progress is in Kojak's socialization (getting more used to people and other surroundings) and in Gracie just getting used to the fact that Kojak is now a part of the family. Gracie is kind of an interesting study, in that she is very laid back and yet likes to do whatever she can to please Jason. With Kojak introduced to the picture you can see a little jealous streak, but nothing serious, as they seem to get along and play often. That was pretty much the day yesterday, and it was also why there was no post yesterday - it was quiet and comfortable, and not much to write about.

Today was also a nice day, though much busier in the morning and into the afternoon. We got up and the girls off to school, as we usually do, then Jason and I needed to get over to Balboa Hospital. About a month ago Jason was scheduled to have surgery on the 19th, and that was postponed due to a few conflicting things. The surgery is probably going to be in June, though we need to get a solid date from the doctors, when we meet with them again on June 1. In the mean time Jason is reasonably comfortable and this extra time allows him to be able to work more with Kojak and get him used to working with the rest of the family, as well as Gracie. Jason and I had to get over to Balboa because of a regular Wound Care visit, and we brought both dogs with us. As expected Kojak was all over the place and that made travel through the courtyard just a little bit of a challenge. The folks there were really happy to see Kojak, as they had heard about him for weeks, and finally seeing him was really nice. The visit went well, and though they were not pleased with how the wounds have opened up some, I did explain to them that they were beginning to close back down again, and Jason has said he will spend less time in the chair, and that will help greatly.

After Wound Care we went over to the airport to pick up our friend Anthony Netto, and then got Jason back over to the house to get him back down. Linda and I took Anthony back up to his home in Oceanside, and Jason relaxed. Anthony and Angelica are purchasing a home up in Vista, so they will be much closer to us, after we're all moved to our new homes. The down side is that any trips to the airport are going to be much longer (we're only about 10 minutes from the airport now).

After dropping Anthony off, and visiting with Angelica for a little bit, we turned around and headed back to our home in San Diego (where we live now). It was now about 12:30 and we didn't have any more trips to make, other than to go do some shopping. We had a chance to relax before going to pick up the girls from school. We have the girls the entire week, so that is a little bit of a change, and those are the kinds of changes we like.

I did make a quick trip over to Target, and shortly after that Linda and I started dinner. Dinner was simple and the girls did an amazing job of eating everything on their plates. Then we went outside to the patio and they played. They also drew on the concrete and played some games, then we all came back in to read and finally get ready for bed. Linda read some stories to them and then I went in to say good night, of course all this after they went to say good night to Daddy. These are the kinds of days I really do enjoy, and it seems we all do around here. Thank you , for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Monday, May 18, 2015

May 18, 2015

 Quite a nice day here, with lite clouds and blue skies. It didn't get much beyond 70 degrees so it was just comfortable for most of the day. The girls got up without a problem or any difficulty and we were all ready to go with time to spare. Part of that is the fact that the sun seems to show up a little earlier each day, and just seeing the light tends to give us more energy.

I got a nice bike ride in, and am hoping to get another one in tomorrow, or maybe on Thursday. I already know that Wednesday is out, due to some medical appointments for Jason, and that's okay, as I have some questions I would like to go over with the doctors. Then again, now that I think about it, Thursday we will be heading up to Fallbrook for a meeting about landscaping.

Really not much to write about for today, and maybe that's a good thing. We continue to get closer to the new house, yet it is still several months out. Jason is putting forth a concerted effort to not be up in his chair any more than he has to be, and we're all happy about that one. I need to get in touch with a few people, so I have to remember to take a look at my dry-erase board, that has all my notes on it. I've completely erased the board a couple of times, and then in a matter of just a couple of weeks it is back, full of information. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.