Friday, December 11, 2009

New Years Resolutions

Well, Amy and I are taking the bull by the horns and getting back in shape before the new year. Just a little exercise and not overindulging at meals to start. It's gotta start somewhere and we are both sick of being grossly out of shape. Please wish us luck and support. We will need it!!!

Friday, November 13, 2009

New News!!!

If you follow our blog regularly, then you must be either extremely bored or extremely pissed.

ME TOO!!!

I wish I had the time to post all of my idle thoughts on everything going on in the lives of we Crandells. As the regular visitors to our site have found out by now, Amy and I suck at keeping you up to date.

Here are my Cliff Notes for the last couple of months or so:

1) I got laid off from Oakwood. It was a blessing in disguise, as I can now spend time with Cooper and we are "keeping afloat" financially.

2) Cooper, Amy and I made our second trip to Michigan to visit Papa and Mimi. We flew into Chicago and stayed with my friends for a couple of days and then took the train to Battle Creek. Now, Cooper has been on a Plane, Train, Boat and Automobile. We hope to skydive by age 3 or 4.

If you want to see pictures please visit Facebook and Amy can direct you to our images.

3) I am at home each day with Cooper. We save money and I am building a great bond.

4) Each day, Amy and I still pray that Cooper can meet his Abuelito.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Great Weekend!

This past weekend Craig, Cooper, and I went to Othello to celebrate my family's September & October birthday's. We were celebrating for Cooper turning 1. My nephew Aiden turning 2. My nephew Samson turning 3. My niece Camryn turning 5 and my Tio Fito whose age shall remain a secret ;).

We held the party at my sister Mandy's house. She is such an amazing hostess. She spent so much time and energy getting everything ready for us all. I really appreciate all she did. My Tia Cas was the head chef as usual! She is so awesome! She brought decorations that made it feel like a real party instead of just a nice get together.

Everybody came. My Grandma, my Mom, and all of my dad's siblings were there. Out of 12 cousins(including myself and my siblings) 9 of us were there. The other 3 had pretty good excuses as to why they couldn't make it. I had such a good time. I was apprehensive and nervous the whole week leading up to the event. It's never easy for Craig and I when we go to Othello, but I ended up having a great time in spite of my fears.

I can't believe how big all of the kids are getting. My niece Camryn is my favorite. I know I shouldn't have favorites, but this little girl has had me wrapped around her finger since she was born 5 years ago. I can't pin point what it is about her that makes me adore her so much, but I just can't help loving her to pieces. I love the others too, I just favor her. She is getting to be such a big girl. So smart and so beautiful. Cooper loves her about as much as I do. He had a great time with his cousins. Samson and Julian made him laugh so much. He gave Camryn more kisses than I've seen him give anyone. She is so gentle and tender with him. All 3 of Mandy's kids were. They have been since the moment they met him. They are pretty special kids.

Mandy sent us home with a car full of hand me downs in addition to all of the gifts Cooper received at the party. I can't thank her enough for everything she's given to us. She gave us a second forward facing car seat so Craig can have one in his car. She gave us tons of clothes. I'm not exaggerating that either. It might very well have been a ton ;). She gave us all kinds of toys and a jogger stroller. I'm still not sure how we fit it all into our car. She has such a giving heart. Thank you Mandy for everything you've done for me. I love you!

All in all, it was a pretty great weekend. It's been a long time since we've had a weekend that good. I love my family! You guys are awesome!

~Amy

Saturday, September 19, 2009

My crazy week!

Well, it's been awhile since I've posted anything. I've just not been sure what to write about or if anyone really cared. Well, this has been a crazy week and I feel like I should write about it.


Monday - RAIDERS! Cooper got to wear his first Raiders jersey and watch them play while sitting in his dad's lap. It was so cute. I can't wait until he can cheer for them. I hope for Craig's sake that they start doing at least a little better so he can hang on to his hope.

I also took Cooper for a walk around our neighborhood. We were trying to get to the library by walking, but the sidewalk ran out at a busy part of the street so we turned around and walked home. We might try it another night when I can be sure that the library is actually open.


Tuesday - What a great day! I got an offer for a new position at Expedia. Procurement Operations Specialist. Basically I'll be purchasing all of the hardware for the company worldwide. Woohoo! They gave me an offer, I countered for a little more and they came back with it. I'm getting a raise! Yay! I was really looking forward to us having a little bit of back up money.


Wednesday - Ick! I felt like crap. I had felt a tickle in my throat all day on Tuesday, but tried to ignore it. There was no ignoring it on Wednesday. That tickle got stronger and came invited something to plug my ears and give me a runny nose. Craig was so great. I kissed him goodbye for work and thought I wouldn't see him for a couple of hours. Lo and behold he was back in about 20 minutes. He had gone down to the Jamba Juice and bought me my favorite - Razzmatazz! I worked from home and took a nap in the afternoon while Cooper napped. If it hadn't been for that, Craig would've come home from work to a very cranky wife.


Thursday - My heart stopped. Craig was laid off from his job. His company has been downsizing for awhile, but his area has been holding it's own. He thought that if they downsized his area they would let go of his assistant. Well, they decided that they would combine the Portland and Seattle areas. The Portland branch manager has more seniority than Craig so he gets the "lucky" job of managing both areas. So much for having back up money. We let our daycare provider know that we won't be bringing Cooper at least through October. I feel so bad for her as this means she's losing her job too. She's down to only 4 kids now. Not good for her. =(

We sat down and discussed our finances going forward. Luckily Oakwood gave Craig a small severance package so he has a little back up time to find a job. The sooner the better though. We discussed the possibility of moving to Michigan. It's a high possibility. We've been thinking about it for some time. I didn't want to really think about it until the new year, but this has kind of pushed it up sooner than I had hoped. Why don't my plans ever turn out the way I expect them too?


Friday - Just didn't feel like doing anything. Craig stayed home with Cooper all day as will be his lucky task going forward. Well, at least until he finds something else. I sent an email out at work to all the parents letting them know about our daycare provider. Had a couple of great responses. I hope she gets some more kids from that email. She did say she would hold Cooper's spot. Poor thing was crying when I talked to her. Not because of losing the money, but because she loves Cooper so much. He's been with her since he was 2 months old. He loves her just as much as she loves him. His face always lights up when he sees her.

Went on another walk with Cooper. I decided to try and explore our neighborhood this time. We've lived here for a year and a half and I've never really explored past our street. Funnily enough I found an awesome little trail. Cooper and I kept on it not knowing where it would take us. It was extremely hidden. While I was walking it, I kept thinking we were like Hansel and Gretal and were going to come upon a house made of candy at any moment. It was such a secluded little trail that has no business being where it is. We came out at the bottom of a huge hill. I am so out of shape that I about killed myself walking up it. This led me to set up a schedule for working out in the future. All in all, I'd say it was a good walk. It was only 25 minutes long, but I felt great afterward and Cooper LOVED it. He just loves looking at everything and taking it all in. I wish I knew what was going through his mind most of the time.


Today(Saturday) - rainy day. Want to go for a walk on that trail again. This time hopefully Craig will go with us. It's raining though, so it looks like it will probably get put off until another day. =( We'll probably stay inside all day long and do chores. I really don't know how our house gets so dirty so quickly.

One thing I do plan to do today is practice the cakes I'm going to make for our joint birthday party next weekend. Samson, Camryn, Cooper, Aiden(my cousin Fidel's son), and my Tio Fito all have birthday's within a one month time span from September 11th to October 12th so we're having a big family party for them. I'm super excited about all of the cakes I'm going to make. Strangely enough the hardest one to decide on is Samson's cake oh and Cooper's too. Not sure why. Cam's was easy she's getting a flower with a bee on it. Exactly what she asked for. Aiden is getting a baseball hopefully with a pair of red socks on it, if I can figure it out. Tio Fito is getting a golf bal stuck in the rough. I really hope I can pull them all off. I'm gonna love trying it at least.

Well, I think that's all for now. Have a great day/week!


~Amy

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

True Colors

Well, it's been almost a month since Amy or I posted something. The truth is that we are both very unreliable when it comes to contacting the ones we love. So for those of you that fall in that category, we apologize.

For those of you that rely on this post for updates to our lives and are generally indifferent to loving us, shame on you!!! Just kidding. Amy and I are just as guilty of keeping up to date with friends/acquintances from a distance, via blogs and Facebook these days.

Here is what we have.

Despite the fact that he is struggling to find an effective crawling technique, Cooper is closing in on walking, we hope very soon. His two bottom teeth are serving him very well in trying "adult" foods, like corn, brownies, gummy worms and popsicles. Upon reading that last sentence, I know why I am overweight now.

We are very much looking forward to visiting Michigan in late October, so Cooper can see his Papa and Mimi again. Amy and I both pray for the day when we can visit Othello and introduce Cooper to his Lito.

Mahalo,
Craig

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Times they are a changing

They say things always happen in three's. I've found this to be true more often than not. I chalk one dramatic happening, good or bad, up to chance. The second instance I say, "What a coincidence?" But, then when the realization that the two instances are in some way similar or connected, I begin to get suspicious. I begin to think to myself, "What is going to happen next?"

And there I wait and/or anticipate, the next outcome.

Is this kind of expectation a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy? Is it the "power" of negative or positive thinking as the case may warrant? At any rate, I continue to collect data in my research for an answer.

The most recent example came when Amy and I decided to take Cooper for a Sunday drive about a month ago. We drove up I-5 to Mount Vernon, turned left and drove over Deception Pass and down through Whidbey Island. The purpose of the trip was a diversion on a Sunday but the destination was my two closest friends in Washington.

First we stopped at Mike and Janine's house to find them returning from a day of birthday celebrating for their daughter Jordan. We didn't know it was her birthday, but soon we were catching up with the last year of our lives, as we hadn't seen each other since last July 4th. We soon found out that my friends were planning a move to Italy for Mike's work. A once in a lifetime chance to experience a foreign country for two years on someone else's dime. I was floored. I was convinced they were in Washington to stay, but here they were grabbing the brass ring

Next, we visited my friend Kim. Kim just opened a deli on the main drag to the Mukilteo-Whidbey ferry about 2-3 years ago. She has put her heart and soul into growing her business and she has been very successful. However, she announced to me that she too is considering a move. TO NEW ZEALAND!!! Once again I was floored.

Now what am I to think?

Is the Crandell family next?

Finally, my friend Tim announced to me that he got the job he was looking for in Dallas and moved there last week. I knew he had been looking to move, to what I thought would be Seattle. When he told me it would be Dallas, I was shocked, saddened. I can't wait to visit he and Alona, only in winter though as I can't do 110 degrees each day in the Summer.

I wonder, does that complete the trinity or do we?

Cheers and Mahalo.



Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Back

As most of you know, Craig, Cooper and I just got back from a family reunion. We had a great time. The family members that put it together did an amazing job! Thank you so much! I won't name names because I don't want to leave anyone out, but you all did awesome and I appreciate you so much.

Being around family was really great and really trying on me. I'm very exhausted mentally from the trip. I need prayer for my anger. Thankfully I have a wonderful husband who is extremely supportive and a wonderful Aunt that I can turn to for much needed guiding words.

The drive was rough. Cooper did great most of the time. He had a couple of melt downs, but Craig and I were prepared for them. I'm actually most surprised at how well Craig and I got along during the drive. I mean, we get along really well all the time, but I expected that since we would be in such close quarters for such a long time it would be tough. I was wrong! We had a great drive and I think it only brought us closer together. We had a lot of time to talk about life. Changes we want and need to make were the biggest discussions we had. I hope that we don't let little things get in our way moving forward and we can act upon some of the changes we've discussed. I also know that we need to continue to pray about these changes and make sure that they are really and trully what God wants and not just me running away from life and trying to change it to fit what I think it should be.

Please pray for my family and I if you think of us.

Love,
~Amy

Monday, July 6, 2009

"Praise You in this Storm"

Yesterday as we were driving home from our small group I heard this song on the radio. I've heard it a million times before, but for some reason instead of singing along, I listened to the lyrics. I started tearing up. The words seemed to fit my situation so well.

The even funnier thing was that our small group study was about how God is always with us. Here are the lyrics,

"I was sure by now,God, that You would have reached down
and wiped our tears away,
stepped in and saved the day.
But once again, I say amen
and it's still raining
as the thunder rolls
I barely hear You whisper through the rain,
"I'm with you"
and as Your mercy falls
I raise my hands and praise
the God who gives and takes away.

Chorus:
And I'll praise you in this storm
and I will lift my hands
for You are who You are
no matter where I am
and every tear I've cried
You hold in your hand
You never left my side
and though my heart is torn
I will praise You in this storm

I remember when I stumbled in the wind
You heard my cry to You
and raised me up again
my strength is almost gone how can I carry on
if I can't find You
and as the thunder rolls
I barely hear You whisper through the rain
"I'm with you"
and as Your mercy falls
I raise my hands and praise
the God who gives and takes away

Chorus

I lift my eyes onto the hills
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth
I lift my eyes onto the hills
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth

Chorus

I'm so thankful that He is always with me. I needed this reassurance and have a little more peace now that I've got it.

Have a blessed day!

~Amy

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Nail Polish

Weird fact about me...I love painting my toe nails. I hate painting my fingernails. I always try to paint my fingernails whenever I'm paingint my toes, but I always remove it before it finishes drying. Not sure why, but I just don't ever like it.

People in the Party... HOT, HOT, HOT!!!

Being born in Michigan I sometimes miss the distinct changing of the seasons. Weatherwise these 4 things are great to experience every year in the Midwest:

1) The first snowfall of winter
2) The first really warm day in spring
3) The first day you can swim in summer
4) Any day when there are leaves changing in the fall

We don't get that progression much in Seattle. We get the following:

1) Going to work and the sun is still down and leaving from work and the sun is already down. 7 hours of daylight in December sucks!!!
2) 3 straight months of drizzle and 45-50 degrees. Monotonous.
3) From June- September where everyday is sunny, dry and 70-80 degrees. Perfect!!! The reason I love living here.
4) Football season!!!

I love this time of year in Seattle. The things I don't miss about Midwest weather are when there is 2 feet of brown dirty snow that lasts until April and when it is 100 degrees, humid and mosquitoes rule the outdoors.

In a couple of weeks, we leave for central California for a Garza family reunion and I will certainly be reminded of the brutally hot weather of my youth. I'm going to wilt like a flower in a sauna by the time we reach Sacramento on the drive down. It will be great fun, but I'll be sweating like Michael Jackson at a Chuck-E-Cheese the whole time.

Mahalo.

Monday, June 29, 2009

I know it's not a competition but....

It is a well known fact, at least to me, that my wife is far more talented, motivated and intelligent than me.

I used to think that I was actually smart, but now I realize I am an idiot savant. Ask me where almost any NBA or NFL player went to college and there's a good chance that I know the answer. However, ask me almost any question about political science, to which I have a Bachelor's degree from Westernn Michigan University, and I will look at you in a way that redefines "befuddled."

More to come.

Mahalo

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Boon Squirt





Wraylee's blog about sporks has inspired me to write a blog about this nifty little gadget by a company called Boon. They have several feeding items for babies. The one that I particularly enjoy is called the Squirt. Now, just to let you know, I am a lover of gadgets so it's not surprising that I had to have this one.

I originally found this item at www.onestepahead.com, but hesitated to purchase because I didn't want to pay shipping and I wasn't completely sure that it would work. Yesterday, while Cooper and I were at Babies R' Us I found the item in their store, for less than it was online! Sweet! I bought it, of course.

I still wasn't positive that it would work. I got it home and couldn't wait for it to be feeding time for Cooper. When that time finally rolled around, I tried it out. Yes! It works! It's awesome! You pour the baby food in the container end of the spoon, screw on the spoon part and squeeze a little at a time to make the food come out. I even made sure to try something that was a little on the thick side to make sure that it would still come out, and it did. I was still skeptical as I was feeding Cooper. I was just sure that there would be a ton of food left inside that I couldn't get out and would end up wasting. This was not the case.

How sweet it is when you find something that is really cool like this. Here are some pictures so you have an idea of what I'm talking about.

Love,
~Amy

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Mentor

Well, for a couple of weeks now work has been a little lackluster. I haven't really known what to do. I have been contemplating a new type of work. I don't think that is what God has in plan for me though. I could still be wrong, but here's what's been happening.

He always has something in store for me that I just don't expect.

First, I'll give you a little bit of a background just in case you don't know what it is that I do. At the end of December 2007 I switched careers and left the hospitality industry. I became an Administrative Assistant in the IT department at Expedia, INC. here at their headquarters in Bellevue.

In March of this year Expedia's technology department made quite a few changes to their structure. They merged the back end tech with the front end tech to make one large tech department. Before this merge there were three Executive Admins(EA's) and six Administrative Assistants(AA's). As I said earlier I was one of the six AA's. In March after the merge there were still three EA's, but I was the only AA left. How did I survive the merge? God is the only explanation that I have. There should be no reason why I survived. Not only did I survive, but they created a position specially tailored for me. I am the Invoicing Coordinator/Finance Liason for the technology department. I'm still shocked to this day.

So, why, if they created a position just for me, am I so bored? That's easy - I don't have enough to do. I have been trying to get myself involved in as many projects as possible without making anyone aware that I'm bored, but it's getting harder and harder.

Yesterday though, a co-worker in the finance department scheduled a meeting with me. Turns out he wants to be my mentor to get me to be a Financial Analyst 2 at Expedia. He told me that our CIO(unbeknownst to me) had asked his boss awhile back to mentor me. She was unable to do so as she is extremely busy. Chris(my new mentor) told her she should do it as he believed I was 80 times smarter than him. His words, not mine. She still couldn't do it, so he pestered her to let him do it.

Turns out he's mentored several people in the past. He also has several connections within Expedia higher up in the chain of command. Not a bad position for me to be in. Now all I need to do is give it my best effort and hope that I have the mental capacity to understand finance. The position I'm in is perfect. I have plenty of time to devote to my newly found studies. Hopefully he really has the time to mentor me properly.

Pray for me. I really need a change, but I love working at Expedia. I think this is exactly what I've been needing.

~Love, Amy

Bink, Binky, Monie, MoMo, Pacifier, etc.

So, I think you are all mostly aware that Cooper has never really grasped the idea of using a Pacifier. I've tried several times to get him hooked because I don't want him sucking his thumb(which he has been doing more of). At first I didn't want to give him one because I didn't want to go through the hassle of taking it away when he gets older. Now that he's been sucking his thumb I've changed my tune. I can take away a bink, but I can't take away his thumb, right.

So several nights ago, Cooper woke up at 2:30am. This isn't typical. When he does wake up though it's almost impossible for me to get him back to sleep without giving him a bottle. This particular night I decided to try the pacifier instead. Holy cow! He took it. It quited him down instantly! I rocked him for about 5 minutes and put him back down. He was back asleep and didn't need a bottle! Hooray! Later that morning when he woke up to get ready for daycare I gave him the pacifier again. He kept it in his mouth the whole way to daycare! Shazia(the lady that takes care of him) took it away from him after the first bottle she fed him though.

Since it worked that night, I've been trying it when I've been putting him down for naps and bedtime. This thing is AMAZING! He usually fights me pretty good when he goes down for a nap. He's completely exhausted, but he just doesn't want to go down. With the pacifier I haven't been having anywhere near the amount of struggle that I had been having previously.

I think he's finally taking to it. Who'd have thunk it? Not me for sure. I thought it was a lost cause. He's not particular about which kind either. We have several different types and he uses them all, for now. We'll see if he develops a special liking towards a certain type later on. Anway, this is my small miracle for the moment.

I have a feeling we're gonna need to use that thing a lot more coming up because when I dropped Cooper off this morning he started fussing when I was leaving. I don't think he's supposed to be having that reaction at this age, but he did. He wasn't wailing or anything, but luckily Shazia's husband had the sense to take him straight to her instead of making the situation worse by letting me hold him for a bit longer. Normally he gets a huge smile on his face when he sees any member of the Khan family, but not this morning. *sigh* I hope this was just a one off thing today. I don't know how I'm going to handle it when he really does wail as I'm leaving him for the day. I guess I just need to take it one day at a time for now.

~Love...

Friday, June 19, 2009

Isn't technology wonderful?

Flashback to 2004.... I had just gotten promoted to Concessions Manager at Qwest Field for Aramark. All of a sudden my grasp had exceeded my reach and I was in over my head a little. One day my boss asked me why he couldn't reach me when he tried to call me after work one day. To which I replied, "because I wasn't home." He was almost speechless and he demanded I get a phone the next day, which the company would pay for. Score one for procrastination!!!

Soon after I had it, I realized I was a fool for not having one sooner. I don't know how I operated without one before that day.

Fast forward to 2 days ago. Our cell phone contract was expiring and I was in need of a new phone since mine was pretty tattered. Initially I just wanted anything that's free. But with my powerful skills of procrastination and lack of decision making, Amy suggested the new I-Phone 3G. It cost $100 and it does 1,000X more than my first computer, a Commodore 64 (yes that's right 64 whopping K of memory). Right now I'm totally lost when trying to use most of it's functions, but I'm sure I'll be wondering how I lived without soon enough.

One thing is for sure, I don't know how I lived without Amy before we found each other.

Mahalo.

"Here Comes the Rain Again...

Falling on my head like a memory. Falling on my head like a new emotion."

This morning as I was driving to work I felt a new feeling, well at least one I haven't felt in awhile. Contentment. God is working in my life. I feel like he is trying to teach me to be content with my situation and surroundings.

I was driving East on NE 8th Street in Bellevue. On my way to work after dropping Cooper off at daycare. It was a beautiful sight. I wish I could've taken a picture. Both sides of the street are lined with a plethora of trees. There is also a center lane with quite a few trees. It was raining and I could see fog covering the tops of the high rises in downtown Bellevue(where I work). It's the kind of day where it would be wonderful to just curl up with a blanket and a book listening to the pitter patter of raindrops on the windows. It was so calming, even though there were many cars around me, quite a few stop lights, and many people hustling down the sidewalks with their umbrellas out trying to avoid the rain. I suddenly felt content. I was instantly reminded that I am lucky enough to live in one of the most beautiful places on Earth. I'm forever trying to see new places and change my surroundings or situation in life, but this morning I realized that sometimes it's okay to stay still and let things become calm and normal. Thank you Lord for showing me in such a wonderful way.

Today, my heart is happy. I have a wonderful extended family and great friends. I have an amazing husband and an adorable son. I have a job, a home, food, warmth, etc. I have it good. Hopefully the next time I'm feeling like I need something new or need a change I will come back to this post and remember what it is to be content.

Love you all!

Monday, June 15, 2009

32 Days...


Until the reunion. I need a vacation now. Why does 32 days seem so far away?


For whatever reason I woke up overly emotional this morning. I absolutely did not want to take Cooper to daycare. I almost burst into tears several times on my way to work after dropping him off. I just wanted to stay and play with my adorable baby all day. I wanted to hold him and cuddle him. He was in that kind of mood, which is rare these days as he is learning to be more independent.


When I finally got to work, it didn't get any better. One of our new VP's is making life tough. For a good reason, but nevertheless he has disrupted the nice efficient routine that I have laid out and now I have to jump through hurdles to adjust my work to suit him. *sigh* I don't normally mind change, I normally welcome it. Why am I having such a difficult time of adapting to this man? I know things will calm down once he is more adjusted to his new role, but in the meantime it's frustrating.


Oh well, I guess I just need an attitude adjustment this morning. Nothing extremely terrible has happened. I just need to get over it and maybe try starting my day over.


My wonderful husband has suggested I take a quick walk to Jamba Juice and get one of my favorite drinks. I think I'll take him up on that suggestion and start fresh when I get back to the office. Hopefully a Razzmatazz will cheer me up. Or maybe I'll go crazy and get the new Blackberry Bliss. Either way, I don't think I can go wrong. In the meantime, I've figured out that my fakeation is in Diamond Head, HI. Wish I really were there.
Have a fabulous day, dahling!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Back in the Saddle Again

As I believe I mentioned before, my posts to this blog will be about as predictable as earthquakes. Just when you least expect it, here I go again.

The sad thing is, I don't really feel like I have a lot to say. I have a tendency to "clam up" when my brain starts working overtime about things going on in my life, unlike most people I know, that are "talkers." When I want to get something off my chest, I am not like that. Most times I internalize things, figuring that is what "real men" are supposed to do with their feelings. Or sometimes, I simply retreat into some other form of non-communication, like watching t.v., typing out a blog, playing in the garage or playing on the computer.... Sound familiar ladies???

I had no idea where this was going when I started typing, but it seems to me that this is a turning into an explanation of why men sometimes seem like they are experiencing PMS. Nature made us very similar, we both seem to stress out over reasons unknown to us. My "Dr. Phil" advice is to get yourself and the kids out of harm's way and lay low until things pass over.

And that goes for both genders.

Mahalo,

Spinning...

is so much fun! Thank you Molly for getting me going. I feel so much better about myself now that I'm finally doing something to change.

To those of you who are contemplating taking a spinning class, I recommend purchasing a seat pad for extra cushioning. You could also purchase padded shorts. Lukily I had those from a previous attempt at cycling.

Have a great day!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Update

Well, I went to the doctor yesterday after my ultra sound. Turns out I do have gall stones. The good news is that they weren't blocking anything at the time of the test and the lining wasn't enflamed either.

The bad news about that is this means I'm having a double whammy effect every time I eat fatty foods or acidic foods or spicy foods. See, I have severe acid reflux as well as gall stones. When I eat these foods the sphincter at the base of the esophagus stays open allowing the acid to go up into the esophagus. Also, the gall bladder constricts when I eat these foods allowing less room for the gall stones and more chance for blockage.

Basically, I need to adjust my eating habits. This should solve both problems. I need to eat a diet that is very bland and low in fats. I hate bland food. I love spicy! I'm going to have to do some research and see what will work and what won't work.

At least I have an answer, now the rest is up to me. Pray that I can have the will power to change. Although, I never want to feel the way I felt again, so that's pretty good incentive to make the change.

Love you all!

~Amy

The miracle of babies

Last night I came home from work/doctor/errands and was very tired and emotional. It had been a very trying day for me. When I walked in the door of my house I found Craig on the living room floor playing with Cooper. Yay, I was home. Before I could put anything down Cooper turned to me and smiled. Then he opened his arms wide and started to make the "come" motion with his hands meaning "I want you(that)", depending on the item he is looking at, in this case, me! My heart melted. I hurried to dispose of all of my belongings(purse, shoes, laptop, etc.) and hold my son. He had been perfectly content playing with Craig, but as soon as he saw me he wanted me. I felt so much better about things instantly. Isn't it amazing how a little child can take all our worries away and also give us all kinds of new worries at the same time? I love you Cooper!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Things to come...

As I'm sitting here reminiscing the old times(I've been burning copies of the Angels Aware video from 1988). I can't help but think of things to come. I have several things in the works that I'm really excited about. So, in no particular order, here they are...

1. The Garza Family Reunion - I love spending time with family and I am so excited that we get to incorporate a vacation into doing so. I'm particularly excited to see family that I haven't seen in a really long time. Good times are ready to be had.

2. Sunday evening Bible study - I've been wanting to be involved in a Bible study for a long time. I found out that some of my friends from church have been wanting to be involved in one too, but for some reason we just haven't found the right one. Well, starting next Sunday evening at 5:30pm we're meeting at Becca's house to get one started. We're going to be meeting every other Sunday evening. I'm so excited! Dave has graciously accepted the role of head guy in charge. He's putting together some ground rules and getting us started on the right path. I don't think I can thank him enough. I know we're going to have some great discussions, learn some great things that we haven't thought about before and have some really great BBQ's or potlucks. Thanks guys!

3. Watching the Lakers vs. Magic game on Saturday with Dave. I really love hanging out with Maren and her parents. They make me think in a whole new way. I love how accepting they are and know they love me as much as I love them.

4. Heading down to Grandma's to help Aunt Kathy and the fam do some much needed house/yard work in July. Normally I wouldn't be so eager to jump in and help out with cleaning gutters and such, but Grandma's house is one of my favorite places to go. It is so peaceful there. Not to mention helping Grandma will be rewarding. I hope someday I have children and grandchildren that will help me out when I need it.

5. Spinning class with Molly. I am so grateful to have a friend that is helping me get jump started with working out. Luckily I have a membership to the same gym chain as Molly. She's been going to spinning classes for 2 weeks now and has inspired me to get a move on. I hope I can keep up!

It seems as though there are a lot more things I'm looking forward to, but for some reason they are slipping my mind. I think that's enough things to keep me happy and looking ahead for awhile at least. I hope you all have things that you are eagerly anticipating as well.

Have a great week!

Love,
~Amy

Friday, May 29, 2009

Not feeling well

So, I figured I'd give you all an update, or the whole story rather, so here goes...

One night in March I suddenly had severe pain at the top of my stomach around the base of my sternum. Craig loaded up Cooper and I and drove us to the Group Health Urgent Care facility here in Bellevue. The ran a bunch of tests, took an x-ray, and told me I had GERD(GURD?). Basically, severe acid reflux.

They gave me some medicine, Omeprazole, that is a preventative medicine for acid reflux. I took it for a couple of weeks with no futher instances of the pain. I stopped taking the medicine because I thought that maybe the time in March was just a one time thing. I didn't want to take medicine forever if I didn't really need it.

I was fine until a couple of weeks ago. I started having some symptoms so I started taking the medicine again. I ran out and asked for a refill. I didn't get the refill until Tuesday. That ended up being too late. Starting on Monday night I had the severe pain again. I've been waking up at 11am every night this week with pain and not being able to get back to sleep until around 2 or 3am.

I finally decided last night that the pain was too much to bear and told Craig I was taking myself to urgent care again. I wanted him to stay home with Cooper so that we didn't have to disturb him.

When I got to urgent care I told them that I was having some chest pain in addition to the pain that I was having. Turns out you get seen a whole lot faster if you tell them you're having chest pain. Anyway, they did an EKG - it was fine. They took some blood - the tests came out fine. They suggested that I possibly have something wrong with my gall bladder, such as gall stones. I have an ultra sound scheduled on Monday morning. They gave me some generic Vicodin to handle the pain until something more can be done.

I did a small bit of research on gall stones and they can be caused by inherited body chemistry, body weight, diet, or the increase of the hormone estrogen due to pregnancy or birth control pills. Hmm, It seems that I could fall into any one of those categories.

In a way, I hope that I do have gall stones, as they can fix that and I would possibly never have to feel this pain again.

I'll keep you updated as I am.

Have a great day!

Love, Amy

Kobe vs. LeBron

I think I may have missed my calling when it comes to career dreams (then again, don't we all?) I feel like I could discuss sports all day. I don't even listen to radio stations that play music anymore, unless Amy and I are going somewhere where I can't find a sports radio station. Sadly, Othello, WA, which is Amy's hometown that we visit often, fits this category.

But, when I listen to the stations we get in Seattle, used to be one station, now two despite the fact that we lost the Sonics, I get the distinct feeling that the guys that talk about sports on the radio are no different than me, except for a couple of key differences.

1) They never played sports, and usually get paired up with an athelete that never "went to class" in college and therefore the uninitiated guy plays off the jock.
2) All they did, in many cases, is intern at a radio station making coffee, running dry cleaning around and hitting switches on a sound board.

All of that being said, I'm very torn about these NBA playoffs. On the one hand, the NBA and the rest of the world for that matter, want Kobe vs. Lebron. I'm not so sure that I don't either. It would be a marketing dream, already is for NIKE, but I think it would regress the league, like fighting in th 90's did.

Personally, which may be redundant to say in a blog, I would like to see a return to "team" basketball like the Celtics and Lakers used to play in the 80's. I really like how the Magic are playing right now. They seem to be the only team that doesn't have the "1 on 5" offense. They actually pass the ball and run actual plays. Granted, this is probably the last team that Darth Vader, excuse me I meant David Stern, wants in the Finals, but it's looking inevitable.

And I for one would welcome it.

Mahalo.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Working 9 to 5.....NOT!!!

You would think that in the deep recession that we are in that work would be cut in half and we would be sitting at our desks all day playing minesweeper. Yet, I work harder now than a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest. I yearn to have a work related injury just debilitating enough to keep me from being able to go into the office and "thinking too hard".

While we are on the subject of work, I often ponder the following question. How did things get done back in the pre-computer/copy machine days? For example; I'll draw up a contract (1 week with the help of lawyers), I'll mail it to you (3-5 business days), you read and review it (1 week with the help of lawyers), revise it and mail it back (1 week with lawyers) and I'll read it and agree to it (1 week with lawyers), mail it (3-5 days) and you sign it. The same scenario now takes what a few hours or 1 day? Yet, we have never been busier or worked longer hours. I wish I could go back to 1955 and work 8 hours, have a secretary that does all the busy work, take 2 hour lunches, drink at work and get nothing done.

The new show Mad Men has ruined it for everyone working in this generation.

Angels Aware

video

This is the 1st 3 minutes of the Angels Aware program that we performed at the Othello Assembly of God for Christmas in 1988. I'm the one that Harold leans to and asks why we're they were all asked to gather. Aren't I cute?

If you want the whole video and the program that we performed in 1989 I can make you a copy on DVD. Just let me know.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

Well, the weekend is coming to a close. I'm so thankful for having such a nice long weekend. Taking Friday off of work was a great idea. It gave me time to visit family in Othello and still spend time at home with my wonderful husband. We accomplished a lot today. We rearranged the furniture in three rooms of the house. We now have room for all of Cooper's toys and room for him to start moving around easier. Now all he has to do is figure out how to crawl forward instead of backward or start walking. I'm not sure if I'm ready for either of those, but I'll adjust. Now I'm off to bed for what I hope is going to be a good night's sleep so I can start the week fresh. Have a great week everyone!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Read between the lines.

I've already informed Amy that I would be a distant observer to this program at least initially. But I also told her that I would most likely warm to the notion very quickly. Well, someone threw me in the microwave, because not even 24 hours later I have something new to say.

Now, I have to admit this whole concept seems to me a bit like putting your diary out there for the world (and God forbid, someday my children) to see. So with that in mind I was very apprehensive about choosing my words in the last post, even though it was very brief and cursory in nature. As I get into topics that I feeel passsionately about (at least at the moment I'm posting them) or events that I feel the need to comment about, I worry that my momentary ramblings will carry the weight of a constitutional amendment that I will have to stand by and defend for the rest of my life.

Maybe I'm lending a little too much gravitas to the situation, but now that I'm a father, I think about these things a lot more. At least because Amy tells me I should. That being said, one of my favorite quotes is from Casey Kasem of America's Top 40 (when radio was still pertinent) "... and now, on with the countdown." which for our purposes means, I'll get to my point.

Another Internet application Amy introduced me to was Facebook. For the uninitiated it is basically a social networking site that you can find your friends, from all over the world and at all "different times" in your life. For example, I get hit with people from my past, both recent and long ago that send me a "friend request." Most are people that I want to stay in touch with, at the great distance that the internet allows for. But.....some unfortunately are not.

And there's the rub (Hamlet, I believe), many of these people were merely acquaintances, or tangential friends that I knew by proximity or by association from another friend. Yet, here they are on facebook asking me to be their "friend." Why now? Why not back then? How do I respond to that? Facebook allows you to accept or ignore those friend requests. America is the land of Freedom of Choice, so I say we add some other catergories to choose to reject friend requests from like; "Sheepishly look the other way and pretend to forget your request" or "You were, and are now, offensive to me" or "Didn't you get the hint 5/10/15 years ago when we didn't speak?"

I know that I am probably forgoing many uninteresting, forced and contrived e-mails, posts and (God forbid) phone calls with potentially changed people from my past...

But, I can live with that.

Blank Stare...

Well, once again Amy has dragged me into the future by getting me set up to post Blogs. I'd like to go back in time to say 1987 when I was in high school and have someone explain the concept of blogging to me.

Friend- "You just type your comments on this typewriter box type thing and people all over the world can look at your thoughts on their little boxes."
Me- Blank stare.... Followed by,"Why would someone in Fiji care what I, the NFL MVP, has to say? And also, these boxes talk one another, explain that to me."
Friend- Head shaking....

So, here I am a new husband and a new father, and from this bully pulpit all I can really speak intelligently about is sports, Mafia Wars on facebook and the Adam Carolla Podcast. So if you are a fan of any of these three things, check in occasionally and I will post some semi-lucid drivel about these topics, among others.

At the bare minimum you can expect me to use some uncommon language and references from the deepest darkest corners of my thesaurus and dictionary. It's how I exercise my brain.

Mahalo...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

You know what really grinds my gears...

Parking. Specifically, paying to park. I absolutely detest having to pay to park. I pay $75 a month to park at this new downtown office building where Expedia decided to move their HQ. There is so much more that I could do with that $75 than pay for my car to sit in a tiny space next to a bunch of other cars. Not only do I have to pay this amount, but if I'm not at the office before 7am I have to park really far underneath the building. Expedians have to park starting at level C. If I don't get here before 7 am I have to go to Level D. I have had, on several occasions, to park as far down as Level F. It then takes 5 minutes just to get out of the parking lot. I only live 10 minutes from work so an extra 50% commute is added just for parking. Why is this necessary? If an employer wants you to work for them, they should make it easy for you to do so.

Not only do I have to pay to park at work, but almost any time we go downtown Seattle to do anything fun, we have to pay at least $10 to park. So frustrating! Even if we are going to do something free, it's not really free because of parking. You also have to build in extra time to whatever you do just to find a parking space. Aaargh. This is the number 1 reason I don't like living in a big city.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Evasive Mucous

Cooper has reverted to his childhood ways. Technically, since he's still a child I guess I should say he's reverted to his newborn ways. Sleeping is not a long occurence in our nighttime regimen these days. I'm sure it's due to the fact that he is having trouble breathing. He has such a runny/stuffy nose. I try my hardest to suck out all of the mucous with a nasal aspirator, but it's hiding from me. Just when I think I've gotten it all and have put away all of the necessary booger extracting tools, he takes a breath and I hear the mucous that I've missed. Not only is the mucous hiding from me, but the nasal aspirator is doing a good job of it as well. We have 2 of them. I searched the house from top to bottom yesterday morning and couldn't find either one. I ended up driving to Fred Meyer at 7am to buy yet another one. All I want is for my poor little guy to be able to breath properly, but no luck. I'm just sure that this runny nose is being caused by his teething. He has no other symptoms other than his gums being extremely swollen. Having a baby is such a frustrating guessing game. Hopefully Cooper will come out none the worse for wear.

Hello

So...I'm gonna start out by saying hello and then letting you all know that I'm not much of a story teller. I've followed other bloggers and I've finally decided to give in and try this thing out. I love reading other people's blogs, as it is a way to help me keep in touch with them even if I'm far away. I'm hoping that is how you will view my blog. Hopefully you aren't super judgemental and will just appreciate knowing a little bit more about the day to day events in the life of the Crandell family.