Back Under the Vanity

Well, the new cat is back under the vanity. Jen tried to coax her out of the bedroom and she got spooked by a noise from the dishwasher and back to the vanity she went. I am about to go and sit with her and try and get a response. I think we just need to be patient, that’s all. She’s a good kitty but she needs time to adjust. Poor little thing.

I took my father to see my mother today. It was rough. She was completely unresponsive. He held her hand for a while but she didn’t stir, not even a little. It’s heartbreaking and gut wrenching. I miss my mom.

I haven’t done any work today. I will, but I just can’t dredge up the motivation to get anything done. My stomach is bothering me. Sometimes when I feel this way having some food straightens me out for a while, but that doesn’t seem to be working right now. Crud. Also, it’s starting to snow.

Crud.

Sunday Morning

It’s 7:13am on a Sunday morning in January. What’s going on?

Tons. I’m going to have a busy day, I think.

My exercise is done for the day, as well as over 60% of my calorie goal. Nice. I am going to visit my father today and take him to visit my mother. I’m not going to have a ton of time to spend visiting though. I have to work today. I have a ton of paperwork to do that should have been done over the last week but got pushed aside due to some super hot customer issues. I’ll get as much of it done today as possible and get to the rest of it tomorrow. I’ll have it all done on time, but it’s going to make today suck a little.

What about the new cat? She started under the bed. We took one of the little covered cat bed/house things we got for Patches last year and put it into the bedroom. We also brought the cat tree we got for the cellar remodel and put that in the bedroom too. We sat in the room with her for a while but eventually just left her alone. Jen snuck back in to check on her and found her sitting in the cat bed/house. She called to me to come and see and when I called back the cat got spooked and ran into the bathroom and hid under the vanity. Sorry, kitty. She stayed there for hours, even when we left her alone again.

When we started getting ready for bed she was in the bed/house thing again. She stayed there the whole time. We thought that was an improvement. Around 2:30am Jen got up for something and managed to coax her out. She was purring like a porche and rubbing against our legs and just being super friendly. We got her to jump up onto the bed so we could pet the crap out of her. She seemed to love it. When we tried to lay down though she jumped off and tried to hide behind the cat tree. After a minute or so she ran out of the room and down the hall. I found her in the other bathroom crouching behind the door. When I moved the door a little she ran back to the bedroom and went back into the bed/house.

While she was walking around in the middle of the night, Jen was able to show her where the food and water and litter box are. We had all of it in the bedroom because we wanted them close so she could find them if she needed them. I am a little worried because I don’t see any signs that she’s eaten anything yet. We had dry food and lots of treats and we put them out for her, but I also went to a pet store to buy some toys (Patches didn’t really go for cat toys so we didn’t have any) and some wet food. I am going to put some of the wet food out this morning and see if she goes for it. We were told that she had surgery on Friday (she was spayed) so she might not have an appetite as she recovers. I just want to give her all the options we can though.

What else is going on? Music. Have I played the guitar at all this weekend? No, no I haven’t. Asshole. I am starting to think about recording ideas for RPM, even if I haven’t had a single musical thought. I am considering going with two amps at a time again. I have my Fender Deluxe Reverb here so that amp is going to be used like crazy. I might bring out my Fender Bassbreaker 18/30 and use it and the Deluxe Reverb together through the AB/Y splitter. It’s going to be pretty loud down here if I go this route, so I might try it to start with and then change my mind. The amps will be in a corner of the cellar that is as far away from the living room as I can get, and it’s reasonably far away from Jen’s office so hopefully it will be okay. If I bother her at all though, I’ll turn off the 18/30 and just go with the Deluxe. I have a speaker soak for the Deluxe so I can turn up the volume knob without getting obscenely loud. As for the guitar I want to use, it will be the Les Paul Standard again. I freakin’ adore that guitar. I will wait until either next weekend or the actual start of February before I put new strings on the guitar, but I really need to play at least a little bit every day to try and get my fingers into something that resembles playing shape.

Okay, I think that’s the gist of today. It’s time to start waking up for real and get something to eat. Happy Sunday, folks!

Florida Recap Post – The Eighth

On January 9th we started the day at Magic Kingdom, then went back to the hotel to flake out for a while. That was the last recap post. That night we went back to Magic Kingdom for the fireworks show and stayed for an after hours event. The event required a separate ticket and took place after the park closed. That means the joint was virtually empty. We did a ton of rides with little to no wait. It was awesome.

Here are a ton of pointless photos.

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I was really ready for the xmas stuff to go away.
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Fireworks… in manual mode. Like a crazy person
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Hey, bunny
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This is me putting my feet up on the nearly empty People Mover, which we rode I think four times that night.
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Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin (my favorite Magic Kingdom Ride not called Splash Mountain) was a walk on. Glorious.
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Harry took this
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Blurry background, babie!
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I really wanted a slow shutter speed shot of the spinning merry go round, but not enough that I would stand there and wait for the ride to start. Sorry.
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He’s especially good at expectorating.
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That’s it. The next post will bring us back to Epcot and I think it’s going to be a long one. Lots of pictures from the last stop at Epcot. After that there will be another day at Hollywood Studios and then I think that’s it.

Florida Recap Post – The Seventh

We went to Magic Kingdom in the morning then we went back to the hotel to rest up then we went back to Magic Kingdom for an after hours event. This post ends at the resting up at the hotel thing. Enjoy.

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Popcorm
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Another day, another gigantic crowd
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131/365
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Who is the dude on the left and how did he end up in the picture like this?
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Back at the hotel, just before sunset, Harry and I were hanging out on the patio so I took a few film pics. Then I took a bunch of digital pics.
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Next up is Magic Kingdom at night including fireworks.

Florida Recap Post – The Sixth

The last post had our first day at Hollywood Studios. This post will start with that same night and then finish with a character breakfast at The Polynesian the next morning. Enjoy!

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The Chinese Theater
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That’s the main street. What’s the main street called? Is it Main Street or Hollywood Blvd?
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I like searchlights
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I shoulda bought a BB8 balloon
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I forget what the fireworks show at Hollywood Studios is called. Phantasma? Something like that? Unlike the other parks, it takes place in a theater, and that theater was PACKED.
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MICKEY!!!!
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MICKEY!!! We had breakfast at Ohana in the Polynesian. We sort of feel the need to do a character dinner every time we go to Disney World. It’s usually Chef Mickey’s, but (food wise) this was SOOO much better.
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MICKEY!!!
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The camera dropped the ball a little here. I think it was the bright light in the background.
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Much better.
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Harry took this. I put the camera in Auto mode before I handed it to him.
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Meter for the shadows, bro. Actually… in digital aren’t you supposed to meter for the highlights?
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Harry took this.
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Harry took this
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MICKEY!!!
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MICKEY!!!
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MICKEY!!! Harry took this.

There you have it. We met Mickey Mouse in person. He actually hung out with us because he’s sort of our best friend forever now.

The next post will be Magic Kingdom pics during the day, and some flake time around the hotel.

Florida Recap Post – The Fifth

I was going to make this post everything from our first day at Hollywood Studios. Unfortunately there are about 10 million pictures from that day so I am just going with Hollywood Studios before sunset. I don’t know what that means for the next post, but frankly I don’t care right now.

I started with the film camera and switched to digital when we got to Galaxy’s Edge. I swapped back and forth a couple of times, but it was mostly digital from that point on. Here we go… there are going to be a lot of pictures here.

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The entrance to Galaxy’s Edge is on the lower left corner of the picture
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Light posts… always
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In the tunnel to Star Wars Land
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Gonk
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I think that after this masterpiece I started using Auto mode again.
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Beep boop beep
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Kylo Ren was probably in there eating breakfast
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The Falcon! Chewie… we’re home
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My ride.
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Chewie!!!
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The Last Jedi herself.
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Best picture of the day, so far
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First Order Stormtroopers. Don’t worry if they are aiming at you. Worry if they are aiming at the guy next to you. Am I right?
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Next stop is Toy Story Land
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None of us rode Slinky Dog this time. I have never ridden it at all because I am old and roller coaster mess with my head now. We did see these lights lit up on our second visit to Hollywood Studios, but I think I had the camera in my backpack on that occasion.
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Toy Story Mania is the best ride in Disney World that doesn’t have Star Wars or Splash in it’s name.
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We returned to Galaxy’s Edge to ride Rise of the Resistance which is the best ride on Earth or any other planet.
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I took a lot more pictures the second time we rode Rise but that comes a few days later.
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We did not see Muppet Vision on this trip and that is a major over sight. Next time.
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The sun is starting to set
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And that’s where we’ll leave it for now. The next post will be after the sun went down, and our breakfast with Mickey the next morning. Also, maybe some more Magic Kingdom as well. We’ll see.

Florida Recap Post – The Fourth

This one is going to WAY over do it. You’ve been warned.

Our first visit to Magic Kingdom was first thing in the morning and we were shocked at how packed it was. We stayed for a couple of hours and then went back to the hotel for a while. My picture taking plan was to start with film and switch to digital when I burned through one roll. As it turns out, we weren’t in the park long enough for me to take 36 pictures on film so I don’t have any digital pics from that morning.

When we went back after dark though… I really went nuts. My YouTube schooling has taught me to keep the ISO setting as low as I can when using manual mode. I was struggling a little at night so I said screw it and set the ISO to auto, and then eventually just switched to auto mode and WOW can this new camera handle lights at night. It was crazy, so I went crazy with it. I took soooo many pictures. Here are mountains of them.

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Welcome to Magic Kingdom
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It was January 7th and the christmas decorations were still up. That was disappointing. Worse, they were still playing christmas music.
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Light posts are always prime targets.
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Another example of an utterly mobbed theme park.
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I think this is my favorite picture from the trip. I haven’t seen any of the film yet, but I can’t see anything I took topping this one.
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Blurry background, babie! WOOHOO!!
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We rode Pirates and got wet and it was under 60 degrees out so it was not the most comfortable experience.
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Shooting through windows sort of became a thing on this trip. There are a lot like this from both Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.
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Clocks. Always.
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There was another night visit to Magic Kingdom and there will be a ton from that visit. Next up though will be Hollywood Studios. We got there early and stayed until they closed so there will be a ton of pics, including a bunch at night. I think. I might do something else instead, but that’s what I’m thinking right now.

Photo Fun

So the photo a day challenge thing was super easy to do during the Disney World vacation. Now that we’re home I’m finding it tough. I’m still up to date, but we’ve gone from wonderful Disney views to shit like this:

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Oh well.

I saw both of my parents today. It was rough. My father has been sick with a cold since leaving the hospital so we haven’t been able to bring him to see my mother. During that time my mother also tested positive for Covid, so it’s been a consistent kick in the scrotum. Today I was able to bring my father to the nursing home to see my mother. It was heartbreaking. My father was desperate to see her, but when we got there she was completely unresponsive. I was able to feed her some of her lunch, and my father held her hand, but she wasn’t really there, if you know what I mean. Over all I think the trip did help my father’s state of mind, a little at least. It was worth it even if it was hard to bare.

To pile on, the kids are gone. Harry drove back to school today. Bellana goes back to school tomorrow, but she is staying at her Dad’s tonight. Sad faces all around. Sure we had them for two full weeks during vacation, but that doesn’t mean we don’t want more time. Greed is good, as Gordon Gecko once said. Did I get that name right? Michael Douglas in Wall Street, right? Whatever.

Further bad news, my vacation is over tomorrow and I have to go back to work. Also, I have an ass load if work that has to be done with a deadline on Tuesday. Yippee! Way to plan that one out, fat boy.

On an unrelated positive note, The Last of Us series will premier on HBO tonight. A new zombie(adjacent?) show, just in time for the end of The Walking Dead. I’m looking forward to having the shit scared out of me.

Home

We made it home last night. Barely. It was after 11:00pm. We drove for over 17 hours yesterday alone. There were two major traffic jams in Virginia that messed up our scheduling in a huge way, but we pushed through and made it home.

I feel like a total mess today. I slept through the night without issue, but today my eyes are so tired I can’t focus without effort. I have body aches and a headache and a rash on my right elbow and another rash on my left hand. I woke up with those yesterday. Maybe I was allergic to the sheets on the bed in Thursday night’s hotel room? That would be lovely.

It’s cold here, which sucks after a week plus in Florida, and we got a little sprinkle of snow over night. Hooray.

We’ve already started unpacking, and I’ve already started all of the laundry. I did a lot before we left, so it’s not the end of the world, but there’s still quite a bit left to do. I want to have actual food for breakfast, but I’m not sure if anything in the fridge is still good. I’ll check that next.

Pretty sure today and tomorrow are going to be sucky days, but at least the four of us are home safe and sound. That’s all that matters.

In closing…

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Epic Road Trip Part 2: Day One in the Books

I really wanted to get us across the state line into Virginia, but I didn’t get us that far. We’re in the middle of North Carolina somewhere. North of Fayetteville, but still maybe 100 miles from Virginia. The kids are in the air, flying home, as I type this. They got to the airport, through security, and onto the plane without issue. Here’s hoping things continue to run smoothly.

I was able to musically mourn the passing of one of my heroes on the day’s drive. Jen let me listen to a playlist I created that I titled Jeff Beck Memorial. It is meant to be shuffled, of course. I know I once said I was done with Spotify, but I guess I am a hypocrite. Enjoy this is you can.