Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Michael Jackson has died

I won't comment on MJ dying, but since the FCC has declared that all broadcasts must contain a mention of his death I don't want to risk the fine.

I only have 90 minutes left in the month and this is only the 2nd post of June. Oh how I slack. We went on vacation though, so I'm allowed. June 7-14 we were at the Barcelo Tropical in Riviera Maya. Good times and good relaxation. (Pics are on Steph's phone and haven't been retrieved yet.) On Friday night just before we left Steph's driver's side rear window was smashed in a robbery attempt in Cherry Creek, so we started off the vacation somewhat poorly. (They took her loose change and that's it.) Fortunately our luck changed when we left for Mexico.

We got to the airport early enough for breakfast, so we sat and ordered food off the kids' menu so they'd be full and Steph and I picked off theirs. 10 min after the food had come out the manager walked out with another identical order...oops. He was shocked to see empty plates already at the table, but kindly left us the extra food for free. The flight to Mexico was uneventful, as was the transfer to the hotel*, and then we checked in. Steph asked nicely if we could have a room close-ish to the pool and they obliged, putting us in a suite for no extra charge instead of a regular room like we'd booked. Sweet. This came with a bottle of champagne and a fruit plate. Alrighty!

So we headed to the beach. On the way down the stairs we passed an older couple who told us they were leaving in the morning and had left an inner tube and an air mattress by a tree if we wanted to snag them. More free stuff! So we grabbed the air mattress, then went for a walk on the beach. As we were walking and enjoying the sand a little girl and her mom walked up with a bag full of sand toys. They were leaving in the morning as well, and would we like a bunch of sand toys for the week? Sure, thanks!

That was all day 1. The rest of the trip was great, with less overtly free stuff. It was all-inclusive, so everything felt free. The kids had a blast and The Bean took huge leaps with her swimming. She didn't like to let go of mom either, which put the kibosh on the plan that the kids go to the Kids Club a couple hours a day so Steph and I could relax a bit. Oh well. I have to remember that even though I got into this for Steph the kids are #1 for her, which is as it should be.

We're getting our alone time now though. The kids are with their dad in Illinois for 12 days and we're celebrating by re-doing the kitchen countertops. More on that later, when pics are available...

*We're never taking an Apple Vacations transfer again. We waited an hour for "2 more people!" who had been on our flight and must have gotten distracted by the line of time share salesmen offering "Free Rides" to the hotels in exchange for 4 hours of your vacation time later in the week. There's nothing more frustrating than getting off a plane and sitting on a bus for an hour waiting to get to the beach because the driver won't just LEAVE. This has happened every time we've booked the transfers through Apple Vacations.

Monday, June 1, 2009


According to the calendar I have aged another year. 365 days until I'm 30. That's bizarre.

I guess I knew I was growing older last week. We saw the NIN/JA (Nine Inch Nails/Jane's Addiction) tour on 5/26 and it occurred to me that I'm just not the target demographic anymore for much of NIN's music. Don't get me wrong...they're great live. But a gorgeous teen-angsty post-breakup ballad like "Something I Can Never Have*" doesn't have quite the same emotional punch when you're standing next to someone you're madly in love with. Songs about bleakness and the world falling apart don't quite fit a happy life full of joy and contentment. It's a small trade-off, but I definitely recognized that my life has moved on past some of the music I enjoy very much.

In another sign of aging, I'm quite happy to see green grass popping up in my front yard. The new sprinkler is doing its thing and the grass seed we put down has started coming in. The "baby grasses" are being monitored daily by The Bean and are up to 3" in places now. Hopefully by the time we get back from our week in Mexico it will be nicely established. (It's a bit patchy, but we're hoping that it will fill in, given some time and water.) Then we'll have to figure out why the hot tub mysteriously quit working when the sprinklers were put in. I'm afraid it may have something to do with the control box being put in the ground right where the electrical cable ran through. That's a problem for another day though.

*Sample lyrics:
I still recall the taste of your tears.
Echoing your voice just like the ringing in my ears.
My favorite dreams of you still wash ashore.
Scraping through my head 'till I don't want to sleep anymore.