Friday, December 6, 2013

Light at the end of the tunnel…

So I promised my followers I would get better at blogging and catch everyone up with what has been going on with the Hamilton’s.  Well….I failed you all.  My last blog I was playing catch up and the goal was to bring everyone up to the present day.  Unfortunately work picked up instead of scaling back and the in-between weekends was spent on getting some house projects done, rest, or being sick.  Before I knew it a full year lapsed and it is November already.  Crazy how fast a year went by…  the good news is working weekends is only a week away.  The bad news is I feel like I missed out on so much and that I have let down my friends and family by not being able to attend to events like birthdays, happy hours, sporting events, or just be there.  

Quick recaps…

October 2012 – Bought a house, traveled a bunch of times to train field techs for my companies Windows 7 upgrade, Jackson started at a new school, and we celebrated Sara’s birthday and Halloween to end the month… you can read more details on my previous blog post.

November 2012 – Jackson had a seizure and we hosted Thanksgiving dinner.  Sara’s mom and dad came over and the Hamilton’s which includes my mom and dad, my sister and boyfriend-in-law, my grandma, my sister-in-law, nephews, and Josh (boyfriend-in-law).  This Thanksgiving rocked because our new house is much bigger, not that busting out of the seams of our other house was awesome, it was just nice to have elbow room at the tables.  I think my nephew Andrew loves my turkey because for second year he said, “This food is awesome…”  The holidays are still hard without my brother, but his boys are more and more like him each year.  There are more details on my previous blog post.

December 2012 - I worked back to back weekends and a full week on the Bridgeline, which made it difficult to shop for Christmas, but I managed to get some surprise gifts thanks to Amazon.  I missed my BFF’s birthday because of work; I was really bummed about that.  Then I missed my other BFF’s wife’s birthday, no LRC money for me.  We took Jackson to milk and cookies with Santa and he got to see Santa at our local fire house.  I am very proud that even though Jackson likes to pull hair, he leaves Santa’s alone. Christmas morning we went over to Sara’s parents to celebrate first.  Jackson had a great musical Christmas and got his first acoustic guitar.  It is always so nice to Sara’s brother and sister-in-law over the holidays. We spent the second half of the day over at my grandma’s house.  Jackson got a riding tractor which Poppy was so proud to give him.  It is going to take a lot of work to get Jackson’s motor skills up to par, but even though he didn’t get the concept of the pedal his smile was priceless.  I almost needed a trailer to get everything home.  

January 2013 – My softball ladies helped me celebrate my birthday at our favorite place Pizza-a-go-go.  They serve old school hand tossed pizza and you bring your own beverages.  Always fun to catch up with everyone after the holidays.  I worked my birthday weekend, then the week after.  I also migrated some of our home office executives so I could document the process moving forward for them.  It’s also my moms and Sara’s dads birthday month. Sara’s grandpa, the great Earl Weaver, passed away and she traveled to Miami for the funeral.  Around that time we were doing some adjustments to Jackson’s medicine trying to find a good balance between extreme Hyper-ness and Zombie land.

February 2013 – I worked two weekends. Saturday’s we are supposed to be done by 6:00 PM, but to avoid working on Sunday the project sometimes pushes us to work later. Unfortunately that caused me to miss Andrew‘s, my nephew, birthday party.  It breaks my heart to disappoint anyone in my family, it absolutely kills me.  I didn’t get off until 12:30 AM that night. Imagine having a phone to your ear from 8 AM until 12:30 AM, let’s just say I was exhausted and not a happy camper.  The only thing that pulled me out of that funk was my niece was born. My sister broke the boy streak bringing us a little princess.  I was so excited to go see her only a few hours after she born. The next day we had snow, snow, snow…. Man our new driveway is huge.

March 2013 –I worked two weekends, had a weekly Bridgeline, and migrated some of the execs. My team lead added a few more team members to the project to help relieve some weekends.  Sara traveled to Washington DC for FX advocacy day which gave me the opportunity to spend 1 on 1 time with Jackson and take a few days off.  The lawn mower started to stall out, so we had to buy a riding lawn mower.  I figured with my knees not getting younger and since Sara loves to cut the grass with her allergies it was a wise purchase. Plus the smile it brings to Jackson’s face when he gets to help me cut the grass is priceless.

April 2013 – The cycle was broken and I wasn’t scheduled to work any weekends, but did 3 back to back weeks of Bridgeline.  Since I had free weekends I thought it was a good idea to tear up carpet and start the stair project. My goodness my hands were sore for a full week.  We also painted and put together our front porch rockers.  We love our new house.  We celebrated Easter with both our families.  Sara and her family traveled to Baltimore where the Orioles celebrated the life their one and only “Earl of Baltimore”.  Last by not least my softball season started, I love my softball ladies..  

May 2013 – So much for the broken cycle….I worked two weekends and two weeks full of Bridgeline. For mother’s day I planted one of Sara’s favorites the Japanese Crimson Maple tree.  I also was able to put down a second coat of stain on stair project of 2013. I am sure there was more in May, just having trouble remembering the rest.

Fragile X Walk 2013
June 2013 – The month started off with the annual Fragile X walk.  Each year we gain new walkers and we continue to surpass our team fund raising goals.  I am so lucky to have supportive family on both sides and loving friends; I know next year our team will even be bigger. I can’t thank everyone enough for showing their support; it means the world to me.  Compton came over and helped me finish painting the second half of the basement, the man cave side. We also had our family vacation….we decided to take a full week to visit the amazing Dr. Elizabeth Berry-Kravis in Chicago at Rush.  We stopped in Utica, IL on our way and stayed at Grizzly Jack’s Grand Bear Resort.  They have an indoor water park with a wave pool and a lazy river.  The key is to go in the middle of week because the rates are cheaper and when we checked out on Friday it was a complete mad house. So if you an anxious kid like we do….go during the week and it will be a great experience.  We came home from vacation to an awesome must odor from the basement.  It took us a week to figure out where the smell came from and found we had leak. Excellent!  The best way to find a leak in the basement is to walk around with socks on, Sara might disagree since she found it.  My mother’s day gift with soaker hose on a timer for twice a day contributed to the extra water.  I went out and bought a dehumidifier and we called our favorite carpet cleaners “The Griffin Brothers”.  I am glad we called them first because they were able to get everything cleaned up and saved us from calling someone to replace all the carpet and the walls.  They enzymed everything, set up a drying system with an industrial dehumidifier, and left it setup for over a week. Then they came back and cleaned up the carpets. Since we knew where the source was from, Sara and I dug a trench along in the front of our house where I would later install a French drain. My sister brought my niece over for a mini photo shoot; I can’t get enough of baby Emma.  Naturally since I had the first two weekends off I would worth the last two back to back.  The good news was we didn’t have any more leaking the bad news I am not sure when I will get to take care of French drain.  June was a super busy month….  I also have lots of pictures I need to dig up for this month that I hope to share later.

To be continued....