Posts

Showing posts from December, 2014

December 31, 2014

Well, another morning without the bike, so I went over to the gym, again, to get some calorie burn in. To be honest about it, it was raining out so I don't think I would have gone out anyway. On top of the rain it was pretty cold, especially for this area. Only a few miles up the road (up I-5) they had some snow. It was on Camp Pendleton, and some of Jason's friends sent him a couple pictures, along with posting it on FB. Funny part is that while I was on the treadmill, listening to the weather channel, they said that 2014 will go down in the record books as the warmest year on record. Just struck me funny that they would say that, right after talking about the snow.

We made a few last preparations for this evening, and the girls even helped me clean the floors (they helped by staying in their room while I swept and mopped). I kept working on sections of the floor and then would let the girls come and inspect and they could play there, while I went on to the next section. I go…

December 30, 2014

We only have one more day left this year and in my humble opinion, it went way too fast. I remember last Christmas and thinking, wow a new year coming and now, here it is, nearly a year later and that year is just about gone. So much has come and gone and we've had some ups and downs, with ups being way ahead - - - fortunately. I probably won't be posting tomorrow, unless I happen to have some time that allows me to. We have already told the girls they can stay up until the end of the year (midnight) so I expect them to either be full of energy and excited or zonked out on the couch.

Today began with me heading over to the gym. My bike is in the shop so I have to do something else to burn those calories. This holiday season is no different from others, and I have struggled to avoid a bunch of extra calories. I dropped about 20 lbs. coming into Thanksgiving, and now, at the end of the year I have put about five of those back on. Come January, and a repaired bike, I should be ab…

December 29, 2014

We've decided to keep our Christmas decorations up at least until the end of the first week of January. We thought about starting to take them down, and then recognized that the girls both really enjoy them, and so we will keep them up as long as they are with us, and that gets us to the end of the first week. We should have them all packed up by the 8th or so, and then look forward to the next major holiday ... Groundhog Day!

Today started with George and I going over to the bicycle shop and putting my bike in for some service and a tune up. As it turned out they suggested to have even more work than I thought was needed, but only because there is a part that is difficult to acquire (center ring on the front crank). I told them to go ahead and replace the entire crank, and it is going to cost $20 more, but then I'll have a new crank. I shouldn't complain though, I thought the total cost would be about $150 and it looks like it will come in, less than that.

We came back to…

December 28, 2014

We got up this morning, and thought it was going to be a laid back, relaxed morning getting ready for church. The challenge to this was that last night I decided to go ahead and list the Explorer (This is the truck that Jason gave me after he was injured. He was never going to be able to drive it again and it provided me with a vehicle, before Linda had come down) for sale. I woke up to a text message, and then another and then phone calls, and before 08:00 I had spoken to five potential buyers and had made appointments with all of them, for this afternoon. As it was, I still had time to get it down to the car wash  and back home again before church.

We went to church and it was very nice and relaxing. We took George with us, to meet some of the folks there, and to show him we were involved with a new church community. After church we headed home and just as we arrived the phone started going again. This time it was the same five folks and me telling them that the first buyer was goi…

December 27, 2014

It has been a very exciting and different kind of day. We were invited to go view a private screening of the movie, Unbroken, by Trident Realty Group and Home Bridge Financial. Both organizations are led by veterans and have a special place in their hearts for other veterans. Jason and I met Mike Chiesl, of Trident, a couple of years ago, and the property where Jason's new home is being built was located by Tim Kirk, a member of Trident. Anyway, the theater was full and it was a very good movie. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys historical stories, and doesn't need to have lots of sci-fi special effects. The acting was excellent and the directing was much, much better than I expected. Angelina Jolie did an outstanding job, from my perspective.

We had a young woman, from church, come do the honor of watching the girls. As it turned out, it was good for the young woman, as she is headed back to college in about a week, and this was a chance to do something different.

We …

December 26, 2014

Christmas Day was excellent, and very tiring. Linda and I stayed up late on Christmas Eve and then the girls got us up very early the next day. We would have liked to have been able to get a nap in there, but it just wasn't to be. By the end of the day we were both very tired and went to bed a little on the early side (about 21:30, or 9:30pm). That is why there was no post yesterday...

Gifts were exchanged and we had great fun watching the girls open their gifts, and despite our best efforts, there were still several gifts for the girls. We had agreed that the number of gifts this year was going to be kept at a minimum because there just isn't much more room here, and we already have too much stuff to deal with. When we get in to the new home it will have more space and more importantly, it will have storage room. Anyway, the girls were all very excited about all their gifts and then Jason brought in (he actually had me bring them in) the big ones. He bought bicycles for the g…

December 24, 2014

It was the night before Christmas, when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse ... okay, maybe a few creatures were stirring, but somebody had to get the last of the preparations done. The girls didn't get to bed until after 21:00 (9pm), and that is late for them. I guess we could have pushed and gotten them to go to bed earlier, but that just didn't feel right tonight. Linda is still running around taking care of the last little things, just like when Jason was back at home with his brothers. She is happy and feeling like this is the way it is supposed to be - normal, if you will.

I actually began the day with a quick 15 mile ride (only took an hour), and Linda was getting some early morning exercise in as well. Because George is here, the girls have another adult to go to with questions, and both Stacy and Jackie think their Uncle George is great fun. This also gives us a little bit of a chance to take care of some last minute stuff, without wor…

December 23, 2014

Today was a very busy day, and if you manage to ignore all the traffic, it was a very pleasurable day. We had one appointment today, with the VA, and also a need to get over to the DMV so Jason could get the permanent plates for his truck. The previous time we were at the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) one of the clerks told Jason that he would have to come back in with the plates and exchange them for the Purple Heart Plates. We said, "Okay." Then went home to wait. The original plates finally showed up and Jason took them in to exchange them, only that didn't happen. This time we spoke with another woman working the window and and she said the Purple Heart plates should have been ordered with the last attempt to get them. Bottom line is that Jason should finally get his license plates around the end of February.

Out oldest son George, flew in today, from Livermore. A big hug to our friend Chris who drove George to the airport and walked him to the gate of departure…

December 22, 2014

The day started early for Linda and I, today. She got up to take care of some personal things and I was up so that I could get in an early and fast bike ride. It was only 15 miles, and I did it in just over an hour. It was probably one of the best I have had along the harbor, and that was because there were few pedestrians around. I was able to get up a nice cruse going and didn't have that many people to dodge and slow me down.

When I got back the girls were both up and having fun with Jason. Linda was in the kitchen getting their breakfast ready. I sat down to cool off a bit and then a short while later Linda took off for most of the day. She had a bunch of things she wanted to get done before George came for his visit tomorrow, so that we could spend the time with him. I also had a few things I needed to get done, and I also had promised to take the girls to the park. There is a small local park that they enjoy going to, and it is within walking distance of the house. When we a…

December 21, 2014 - Happy Winter

Today is the first day of winter, and it really showed down here. I actually got the light jacket out of the closet and carried it with us tonight (didn't put it on, but I had it just in case). We went out for a nice dinner with another couple tonight, and it was very enjoyable. They took us to a Mexican Sea Food restaurant and the food was excellent. Afterward we went to another place and had dessert, which was also very good. Needless to say, I need to get some exercise in tomorrow to "pay" for all this - I must have gained 5 lbs.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. This morning we got up and decided we really needed to finish all the Christmas cards, and we did. The challenge was that today is Sunday and the Post Office is closed, or at least that was what I thought. It was still early, almost 08:00 and I decided to go for a ride. On my way out I rode over to the local post office and they have a notice on the door that said they were going to be open today, after 10…

December 20, 2014

Well, we didn't finish the Christmas Cards, like we wanted to. Tomorrow is Sunday so we'll just have to wait until Monday to get them in the mail. That means some of them (most of them?) won't make to their destinations before Christmas. May be that's a good thing, as people will still be receiving some mail after Christmas... ;-)

Linda was up early this morning, and that's after staying up late last night, working on the cards. I had pretty well done most of what I needed to get done, and because Linda wants to be sure they all get done the way they should be, she is doing them. Guys, and I'm one of them, have a tendency to want to just get it done, and women, Linda in this case, want to be sure everything is done correctly. The mistake we made was not getting started on them soon enough. Next year should be better.

I did get a short bike ride in today - Linda needed a paper cutter (her's broke) so I rode down on my bike to buy one. I got it back to the ho…

December 19, 2014

Today was really a fun day for Jason, Linda and I (girls are with their mother). We went up to speak with the builders of his future home, and we discussed interior issues, as well as some structural ones. Effectively, the house is designed. It is a matter of getting all the permits done and some of the minor other issues done and lined up. The house is being built to make life easier for Jason, and with the idea that the house is more than just a house, it is his HOME. It is a place where he will be able to do all the things anyone else can do in a house, and he will know he is safe. We are so excited about what is happening, and Linda and I are so very happy to be a part of this. For those of you who are able to find me on Face Book you will see a new video that was recently released by the Gary Sinise Foundation, and it explains the house better than I ever could. Please take a moment and view the video.

The trip up to the meeting took us about an hour, and that was because we (I) …

December 18, 2014

Getting the post out a little later than I usually do, and actually it is after midnight so it is now the 19th. We just got back from the movies, and I just wanted to be sure to get something out here for the blog.

Jason and I went to Balboa this morning and he had two appointments. His first appointment was with Wound Care and it was an early one - about 08:50 (usually we're going in at almost 11:00). They were very pleased with how both wound areas are looking and so am I. We will continue to minimize the amount of time he spends in his chair, and thus give it more opportunity to heal. After the Wound Care Jason had an appointment with the folks at Physical Therapy. I told Jason that I would be getting a hair cut while he was at that appointment, and I would meet him there.

As it turned out there was no waiting at the barber so I was in and out a little faster than usual, and that was a good thing. That gave me a chance to go over to the ASYMCA (Armed Services YMCA) and go say, …

December 17, 2014

First a recap of yesterday - since I didn't post yesterday...

Monday ended with everyone getting to bed at a reasonable hour, and I had expectations of sleeping very soundly through the night. At about 01:10 I received a call from Jason, who was up with Stacy. She was having some very tough pains in her lower abdomen and we soon decided that we needed to get her to the ER, at Balboa.

We arrived there at about 01:40, and by 02:00 (I happened to look at a clock) a nurse was working with Stacy, in the ER. They diagnosed that it was severe constipation and after taking some X-rays decided that they were correct. I was worried it was an appendix problem, and I was very glad when I found out I was wrong. They also ran some cultures and found out that she had a urinary infection (UTI). Total time at the ER was just about 3 1/2 hours, and though it was now almost time to be getting up, I felt like it wasn't a long stay. We left with the antibiotics and went straight home.

Fortunately,…

December 15, 2014

Well, we had a great weekend and made the most of the relaxing time. The weather improved from the rain storm we had - and we really do need the rain, so I am hoping we get some more. We made a little progress with our Christmas Cards, and who knows, we may be able to actually get them out this year, before Christmas (I was hoping to have it done by today, actually). On Saturday I got in a nice 25-mile ride, and then on Sunday to switched to a faster pace and put in 15 miles, so I'd be back home in time to go to church. Now all I have to do is be able to get in 30 miles at the 15 mile pace, and I'll be ready for the longer rides... ;-)

Also on Sunday we went over to our friend's home, Anthony and Angelica, and enjoyed a nice relaxing time with them. We made it back to the house about 19:00 (7pm) and within a pretty short amount of time had the girls bathed and in bed. All quiet at the house by 20:30 (8:30pm) and shortly thereafter we were ready for bed ourselves. Sofia, fr…

December 12, 2014

I felt kind of special today... It actually rained most of the day here, and at times it actually rained kind of hard. Most of the time it wasn't very hard at all, though. Unfortunately it doesn't look like it will rain tomorrow, but that's okay, we have some things to do and the rain would make some of them a little more difficult.

We took the girls to school today, and we still walked, and they got to wear their rubber rain boots. They were pretty excited to do that. What I found out later was that the school administrators truly considered closing the school down today, just because of the rain. "There is a concern for the standing water caused by poor drainage." I just kind of felt numb when I heard that. Now I know the folks in So. Cal have a slanted view of the world and reality, but come on, a little rain and you shut down the school? Fortunately, there are enough people around that over road that line of thinking.

No problems with the van today, as we did…

December 11, 2014

Today started out with Linda and I still getting up before 07:00 and looking at all the different little chores/tasks we wanted to get accomplished. One of those was for me to get a 25 + mile ride in, and I did it with some morning left over to spare. I was really kind of surprised that when I got back home I felt pretty good, and I figure it was all related to my diet. Prior to the ride I ate an apple and a yogurt, and then on the turn around, to come back home I stopped and had a banana and a small packet of honey. I think the honey was the most important thing for energy. I'm going to continue working like that and work myself up to even longer rides.

Linda went off with a friend of hers, to go look at thrift stores and do a little shopping. It was one of those girls days out, kind of things. I guess it had the effect needed because she came back with only a few things purchased, and she was in a great mood. You might wonder where was Jason in all this, well he was relaxing in …

December 13, 2014

Today was another of those days when things just go right. It began with Jason having to get ready to go to PT, at Balboa, and at the same time I took the SemperFi van back to the Wounded Warrior Battalion. The SemperFi van was great having, since we really did need it, just to get around, and now another family will be using it. We made sure it was clean and had a full tank of gas. I also spoke with Terry, from the Ability Center and found out that our Ford van should be ready tomorrow, and that they did find out what was going on with the shifter being stuck in park all the time. Apparently there was a blown fuse and when it was replaced, everything thing worked again. I know, it makes you wonder why it too so long to figure out it was a blown fuse, but I don't care at this point, I'm just glad that it should be back tomorrow. Because it was a  "should be" we still went ahead and took the loaner van... just in case.

Linda and I took the girls to school and then we …

December 9, 2014

Image
Another good day to relax, and Jason did just that. He didn't get up any more than he absolutely needed to, and that is very helpful to his healing effort. When I did the dressing change there was a noticeable improvement of the wound areas, and I am hopeful that it will continue. And, since there really wasn't much else to go on about for today, I will let you know that I got another bike ride in, and had another 22+mile ride. It was very enjoyable and I am determined to work my way up to 30+ miles with each ride... I'll let you know how that works... ;-)

We did get some decorations up on the tree and in the house yesterday, and I am posting a couple of pictures today, to go with it. On top of that we have a couple of decorations out in front, and it does help to make it feel more like a Christmas time of year. I really do enjoy San Diego, but it just needs to have a little more seasonal type weather. This constant Spring/Early Summer is starting to get to me. Even when w…

December 8, 2014

Kind of a fun day today. The morning started out with us getting up at around 07:00 and me getting ready for a bike ride. Jason didn't have any appointments for himself, just for Gracie. Linda was up and taking care of some things she wanted to get done, and it was one of those feel good days where none of us had any immediate pressing issues. I got in about 21.5 miles, so that's two days of 20+ rides. Tomorrow I might go for another one, but it all depends on how things work out. Jason had to get Gracie over to the veterinarian, and have some dental work done. Apparently she had to have a tooth pulled, as well as some other dental work done. The tooth being pulled was the major issue, and apparently it was a tooth that had been bad for some time, just never caught before. The roots were pretty much non-existent and it was simply being held in place by the gums and some pressure from the other teeth next to it. It wasn't infected or any other problem with it, just that it …

December 7, 2014

I hope everyone took a moment to remember the heroes of the Pearl Harbor attack, that happened 73 years ago, today. Just 14 years ago, Linda and I were in Pearl Harbor, for our 25th wedding anniversary. There was a brief discussion about it, at Church today, and it is something that I hope continues to be remembered, lest we allow ourselves to become complacent and are attacked again.

Today began with Linda and I going to church, and Jason going off with his friends, to go shooting. It is probably the one activity that he can do, without putting a great deal of dependence on others. After church we came back to the house and we had lunch. Linda took care of a little cleaning and then took off to get some thrift store shopping in (she loves thrift stores), along with some of the other local businesses. She came back with a couple of decorations, so we won't have to go through our storage to find the Christmas decorations. She was gone for nearly three hours, and came back just a sh…

December 6, 2014

I got up this morning, at about 06:30. It was a little on the early side, considering it is a weekend, but I wanted to get out and ride my bike, since I hadn't done so in several days. I put in 20+ miles and felt pretty good about it. When I made it back to the house Linda was also up and just beginning to get ready to head over to the C.A.R.E. Symposium at Balboa. Today was the last day of the event and we planned on going in later than the previous two days. Jason said he wanted to go in as well, since CMDR Laura Ledyard (ret. U.S. Navy) would be speaking.

Laura was our Care Coordinator when we first arrived at Balboa, and if there was anyone we could go to, to get things done, it was Laura. If you have been a regular reader of the blog you will know that she has been mentioned a few times in the past, in ways that she has helped us. Anyway, she was speaking today, along with a few other people we know from Balboa. Funny part is that they all used us, and especially Jason, as re…

December 5, 2014

Linda and I specifically got up early this morning, to be sure we would be at the symposium to see and speak with Congresswoman Davis, of the 53 district (that's the one we live in now). As it turned out, she was there and she was one of the first presenters... and I liked what she had to say about doing what we can to preserve the integrity of the military. The only problem was that as soon as the next speaker got up she got going. I saw her quickly exit the auditorium so I thought maybe she was headed to the bathroom, so it didn't seem right that I'd get up and stop her. I planned to catch her when she came back... she didn't.

She came in, spoke and left, and that was that. Next time I won't be so considerate and I'll chase after her. I wanted to speak with her, as well as get some contact information. We knew our Congressman, up in Livermore so I wanted to get to know the Representative down here. That's okay though as the rest of the day was very good, …

December 4, 2014

Today was a pretty exciting day for us, as we were given the opportunity to speak at a Medical Symposium at Balboa Naval Hospital. There were people from all over the country, and even a couple from out side the country. The focus on the three day symposium is care and treatment for the wounded and injured service members, and how to get them back on their way to productive lives. Almost a year ago we were asked if we would be interested in participating and speaking, and we said yes. Actually, the question went to Jason and I, and I kind of just included Linda.

As it turned out we were given nearly an hour to speak and address the audience and it went well. I think we could have gone much longer, so we had to be very aware of the clock. Besides there were other speakers on the stage. The symposium also included Gary Sinise, and it was good to see him again. He made the comment to me that we were sure seeing each other quite a bit lately, and I had to agree with him... and that it was…

December 3, 2014

The girls got up this morning and came up stairs to greet us, and to also jump up and down on us - we are so much fun! When asked why they didn't go in and spend the time with Daddy, they just replied that he was asleep still. I think next time we need to "act" like we're asleep and maybe they'll just quietly go back to their room... Nah, they would just decide that we needed to be awake and pounce on us anyway.

After getting the girls to school we came back to the house and took care of a few things, including the return of the loaner van from Ability Center and checking on what steps need to be taken to be sure our blue van isn't out too long. Actually, Terry, from the Ability Center has been  staying in touch pretty well, and keeping us updated. We should have Jason's van back by the end of this week. We're happy about that because the Semper Fi van is also going away, and back to the Wounded Warrior Battalion - West, probably on Monday of next wee…

December 2, 2014

We put up our tree today... not many decorations on it yet, but at least the tree is now up. The girls were very excited, at least until we told them that the decorations would go on later. Tomorrow we take them to school, and then the next five days they will be with their mom, so the decorations are going to have to wait until next Monday. Actually, that gives us some time to figure out what we want to put out this year. Funny to think that this is most probably going to be the last Christmas in this house - kind of a nice thought I think.

Not much happening today, Jason just rested and we really didn't go anywhere, except for one short trip to Target to pick up a couple of things. The really big news for today is that it actually rained, and it is still raining, and is supposed to rain through tomorrow. Pretty cool, if you ask me. We so much need that rain in California. I hope it does stop on Thursday, though. We have an event to go to, and no matter how you look at it, to get…

December 1, 2014

Today begins a busy week for us, though we are not going to have to travel anywhere, and we're quite happy about that. On Thursday, December 4, Jason, Linda and I are going to be speaking at a Medical symposium, about the care of wounded and their recovery... AND about the caregivers who frequently are in the background, doing so much and receiving so little recognition, beyond some close friends and family members.

The next couple of days we, Linda and I, will be working on putting together our thoughts as well as some pictures of Jason's recovery. We began, today, going through a bunch of the photos I've taken, and Linda and I made some initial selections. The tough part about this is that we are probably only going to have about an hour, total time to talk and present, and Jason won't be the only wounded vet there. He will be the most seriously wounded, and Linda and I will be the only caregivers, on stage. The audience is going to be made up of all sorts of people …

January 2017

January 2017
Jason gets a visit from Gen. Jon Monett

January 2017

January 2017
With Gary at the GSF Office