Monday, January 29, 2007

Sights and sounds in the SpeakEasy household...

Today, being my last day at home before returning to work after a 2 month paternity leave and 6 week sick leave, I am full of emotion.

I really felt that at the beginning of this leave that I would be able to get things done around the house, build a better relationship with my wife, form a bond with my son, finish my 2 classes, jump start my promotional business and socialize. I was wrong. Not only did I not see my friends, but our non-sleeping (heavy) son, and my lack of any sort of physical shape whatsoever resulted in, what we suspect to be, a herniated disk, or pinched nerve in my back. I'm waiting for the MRI results which should be here any moment.

So I go to physiotherapy twice a week now, and have managed to lose 10 pounds (a good thing) and my stretching and exercises are aimed at my lower back, abs and butt. That might help with the build a better relationship part... Butt seriously (pun intended) This time away from work has helped me put life back into perspective. I need to spend more time on me. I want to be in shape, I want that exciting career, and the pay and power that goes with it. I love politics and need to be involved in some way, and I really want to take cooking classes and guitar lessons (if only I could sing). I no longer need to eat all the time, especially snacks. I hate the way I feel after eating some 300 calorie treat. I took my wife for granted. Whatever I didn't do, she would do. She's like that. She's a doer, and I'm an accepter. I'd take on 10 tasks, knowing that I'd only be able to do one or two and she'd wait for the results. When they didn't come as fast as they should have, she would, understandably, question my work ethic. I need to learn to say no, and do what I say. It's been tough, but I find the results much more relaxing for me.

I learned that school will take care of itself. I enjoy the courses and do very well, whether I pour 30 hours a weeks into it, or 3 hours. I have to be productive and get the work done and enjoy the process.

I learned that I miss the company of my wife. Not that we used to go out often, but since both children have arrived, we are just plain tired at 8pm and want to unwind. She likes the internet, and I like to clean, take care of tasks and well, work the net too. But this pattern has become destructive. We are here together but not really together. We need to find a common task we can do together and I need to pamper the hell out of her. I really get it when she says that she wants to feel like she did when we were dating. Hell, back then, I was 29, no responsibilities and just wanted to impress this hot chick I met. Now? We take turns handing the baby off to each other bemoaning how long it has been since we managers to shower. Rough, eh?

I wanted to set goals. I need goals. I want to make sure that what I want to achieve helps my family get closer. I want a clean house that is not covered in clutter, and I want to see my friends and my wife's friends. I want more "guys nights out", and more time bonding with our kids. I want my lap top back (the hard drive blew), and I want a good nights sleep. I don't want a sore back anymore and I want to finally be in a position to make something happen in the workplace.

2006 did not end well, and 2007 has to be a better year because for the first time in years, I am clearly seeing my future and it sucks, unless I want to change it. I do, and I can. So stand back world and watch out for me. I'm ready to make that splash in the pool of life, and for the first time in my life, I'm NOT taking a life jacket, just in case.

Whatever doesn't kill you, makes you stronger.


Back to the household...

The Weed decided to get up at 4am this morning... How thoughtful.

The Royal Rumble was yesterday, the only WWE PPV that I have ever seen in a bar, or paid for (except attending Wrestlemania 6). I missed it. I missed my 3 friends that used to do the wrestling thing with me. I have not heard from them in years. Oh well.

The Happy Boy told me, over the weekend that he, "no like this Mummy... Want different Mummy". Same for his little brother. Poor kid is going to miss me big time when I go back to work.

I am going to potty train the Happy Boy and am calling out my 4 loyal readers (lol) for their tips, tricks and advice.

The new neighbours that moved in behind us, to whom I brought over an apple pie to welcome them to the neighborhood, but have not heard from yet, finally got blinds for their bathroom/bedroom last night. Thank goodness.

All the Dads in the playgroup are having another "Guys nite out", Feb 6th at our place. On the menu is deli and a few starters, like chopped liver (yum). I love that we can all get together and bash the Liberal party of Canada.

Speaking of the Liberals... I watched the beginning of question period today and found it funny that new Liberal leader Stephane Dion was picking at PM Harper for his environmental record, when Dion was the Environment Minister under the Liberals and did nothing to help Canada. Hypocrite. Yet people still vote for these idiots. Sigh.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

This is the end...

Today represented the last time I'll be around to drop off and pick up The Happy Boy from pre-school, as I'll be heading back to work on Tuesday from my paternity leave / sick leave. It's kind of sad, actually. I have really enjoyed spending time with both kiddies, and as I recover from my disk / joint problem in my lower back, I find that UrbanMummy and I have been able to finally make headway in the house by cleaning up areas that remained in chaos since we moved - namely her office and the garage.

I do know that I need to get caught up in my classes - started Human Resources Management and Organizational Behaviour II, January 2nd and have fallen behind as a result of my injury and exhaustion.

We have a family vacation coming up - over my birthday - which is either going to be great, or a nightmare, depending on which, if either, child decides to sleep. If neither of them do, then it'll be me toating them around the ship at all hours while their Mummy sleeps. I wonder if they'll let me bring them into the casino.

I watched some of the AllStar game last night - like the new uniforms - they make the players look more in shape than do the old ones, but I really hate to see tradition go out the window. The game itself was a little boring - which figures since the NHL uses the AllStar game to "introduce" Americans to hockey. I felt like I was watching a roller hovkey game. Lots of flash, no substance.

I did catch the end of the Raptors game. Geez. Almost at .500. Great stuff. I really enjoy watching them play and I really like Jose Calderon. Great team player and all around good guy. I'd pay to see him play.

I got rid of all my Toronto Rock tickets for this season... Too much on my plate and not enough support from family to be able to make the 8 games - 6 of which are on Friday nights. Oh well, there is always next season.

Valentine's Day is coming up and I'd love to hear from people what they have done that went over great and what they did that bombed.


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

A first...

Saturday January 13th, at 8:13am, while sitting at our kitchen table eating pancakes (our Saturday morning ritual), my son, The Happy Boy, calls out to me... "Daddy". "Daddy".

I reply, "Yes, buddy".

"Daddy, I love you", he says.

I spin towards him, and with a half-smile / half-teary eyed, reply, "I love you too".


Sunday, January 07, 2007

Is this too much cake???

For a 2 year old and 15 other 2 year olds to appreciate?

It sure was for the adults. We all just stared at it, mouthes agape. Look at all the little hands gathered around waiting for their piece of the train to eat. It was really cute.

The cake was for our long awaited birthday party for The Happy Boy as he turned 2. His birthday was in december but a lot of his classmates and baby group we away or busy so we chose January.

In honour of my sons love of trains we chose a Thomas theme - although I do not belive that he has ever actually watched Thomas on TV, and my mother-in-law (MIL) made this for him. Zoinks.

The only thing more surprising than the cake was trying to clean it up hours later. I ended up using a piece of the track (licorice) to scrape away all the icing, and other yummies that made that cake what it was.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Thursday Thirteen

*** This Thirsday Thirteen was previously completed December 2, 2006 but not posted due to injury. It is posted now for this Thurday. Please wait to read it then. :)

Thirteen Sports Cards re-cherished by Speakeasy

1. Jim Benning & Fred Boimistruck - 2 young promising defensemen hurried along by the horrible Toronto Maple Leafs teams of the 1980's. They were the future, the hope. They bombed. But I have their rookie cards!!

2. Sidney Crosby - supposed Upper Deck Rookie cards - hopefully he will re-establish the hockey card industry and I can sell some of my older sets and pay off our mortgage.

3. Norman Aubin - Another ex-Leaf, but he has a cheesy moustache on his card and it makes me laugh.

4. Joe Reekie - Does he?

5. Jason Kidd - looks like his rookie card, #134 Topps, but I cannot find a price for it anywhere. Is it rare, or a dud?

6. A bunch of 1977 O-Pee-Chee sub-set hockey cards. 22 of them to be exact. I'm looking at Card #4, Marcel Dionne. The cards have rounded corners. Looking to see what they are worth...

7. A Parkhurst Prospect rookie card of some tall lanky kid named Chris Pronger. Rumour had it that he demanded to leave Edmonton cause his wife caught him cheating. Tsk. Tsk. Also have Darren McCarty (the bankrupt one) and a chap named Markus Naslund.

8. Dennis Rodman - For some reason I have a bunch of his basketball cards and in each one he has different colour hair. A very weird looking individual who bopped Carmen Electra. Yum.

9. Michael Jordan - his Chicago White Sox card from when he decided to take up baseball after "retiring", or being suspended from the NBA. I should have sold those babies when then had value.

10. Any cards from the Atlanta Flames, Cleveland Barons, Kansas City Scouts Colorado Rockies or any team that has folded. I look at the guys that were playing for these teams and now I understand why the team folded or moved.

11. Checklists. Those old paper checklists that I ticked off in my youth that are now worth so much money. I see them and a tear comes to my eye. What was my mother thinking.

12. Any ProSet cards. That tacky series that was so full of errors like in the spelling of guys names, etc. Those cards got good when the company corrected them along the way making the errors valuable. But them they saturated the market with their crap and now I look at those tacky cards and wonder what I could have done with the money back then.

13. All the rookie cards I put away in special protective cases for when they were worth thousands of dollars. For every "valuable" card I still manage to find in my collection, I have 1000 cards of guys like Patrick Poulin, Vesa Viitoski, Shayne Toporowski and Jiri Slegr. Geez. Why couldn't Pauli Jaks make it big... I must have 60 of his crappy card. Sorry Pauli if you read this.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

December... The Month from Hell

Oy. What a month.

To begin with, there have been no posts because me computer has been acting up on me. I have no administrator access, and cannot fix the problems without access. So my computer dies a slow death every day.

My course ended December 8th. Another "A".

We had a scrapbooking show, event on December 3rd and 4th and after doing some heavy lifting, my back and piriformis muscle went into full spasm on the 5th result in my being on flexerol (prescription muscle relaxer), tylenol 3's and Nuproxen for a long period of time that culminated December 21st when my piriformis muscle went into full shutdown resulting in me taking Valium, more tylenol 3's, a very strong anti-imflammatory, then anti-biotic for the cough that was making things worse. I left my house on the 21st with my mother and was able on the 26th to come back for a few hours to see my sick wick and sick children. While being able to stand (not straight) a little more every day, and not be exhausted, I stopped taking the valium just last night, and while still sleeping at my mother's because I'm just friggin useless here, I am starting to see some progress and was able to see The Happy Boy for his 2nd birthday on the 27th.

Basically 2006 was shit, except for the birth of our little one that doesn't like sleeping (poor UrbanMummy). It taught me a HUGE lesson about taking care of myself and those around me that I love. I really fucked it up and man am I paying the price.

I tried acupuncture for my piriformis on the 20th, just before the spasm set in and it was really weird. I'm not a needle guy and having those things sticking out of my back, ass and leg felt quite odd, but I gave it a shot. I just don't know if it caused the spasm. All I know is that the resulting sciatic pain is the worst pain I have ever felt in my entire life and I've been through many injuries with all the sports I have played. This one took the cake.

I know this was rather rambly, but I had been trying to post it for a few weeks but couldn't sit down on a chair until recently, and I'm actually standing right now as I type this.

Happy New Year to everyone.

Special greetings to the wonderful UrbanMummy who helped me push myself so I could be where i am today in file and through this illness. I'd still be hunched over if it was not for your encouragement, and by encouragement I mean yelling at me to "Stand up straight!!!".

Thank you to Shroom Monkey as the only one of my "readers" who took the time to email me remind me to post. I appreciated you thinking of me. It made me smile. I wish you an awesome 2007.

And just a note to Penelopeto that I'm going to miss reading your blog and I hope that you are able to one day continue, or amybe in this crazy city we live in, we'll get the kiddies together and say hello. You are a wonderful writer and I enjoyed reading your work.