Saturday, August 30, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
I, on the other hand, think I had a rough night. I either tossed and turned all night or dreamt that I did. It's weird that I don't which actually happened. Either way I feel extremely tired this morning. My brain isn't actually functioning well enough to write anything meaningful. Hopefully a cup or two, or ten, will wake me up.
Despite my heavy eyes I'm at my desk working on the latest issue of a magazine I publish through my office every quarter. I'm starting to develop some raging jealousy as I assemble a two page spread, "How I Spent My Summer Vacation." I'm sifting through pictures of college students and colleagues scaling cliffs in Ha Long Bay, Vietnam, hanging out in Rio De Janiero, swimming under waterfalls in the Grand Canyon, roaming the streets of Paris and eating lobster in Nova Scotia among others.
We really need to go on another vacation. Somewhere exotic would be nice. But with HotMomma now approaching 29 weeks in the pregnancy, that won't be happening for quite a while. I guess I'll have to settle for a three day holiday weekend at home.
I'm purposely non-political on this blog. That and religion I try to avoid. But I will say, Obama's speech yesterday was amazing. And McCain pulled off quite a shocker this morning with his veep pick. He's really trying to get those Hillary supporters on his side.
Yes, it's going to be an interesting run for the White House in the coming months. After growing extremely tired of all the polilitics, I'm suddenly invigorated.
Finally, it's going to be a three day weekend in celebration of Labor Day and we're expecting a house full of visitors. There will be no rest and relaxation for us, which is what I was looking forward to. Oh well. That's what happens when you live in Vegas.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
As I continue on my upward journey in age, I've realized that I need to finally muster up some courage and make an appointment for a thorough examination to make sure my body isn't headed in the wrong direction in terms of my health and well being. I wouldn't want a breakdown anytime in the near future.
Over the past couple of weeks I've browsed my insurance company's Web site for names of potential doctors and made several phone calls in an attempt to set an appointment. So far, I've reached two doctors that aren't accepting new patients right now and two others that don't have new patient appointments available until November.
During a post coital conversation with HotMomma last night, she questioned my inability to find a doctor. The answer, we concluded, is the fact that I'm only in search of a male doctor. And that opened up a whole can of worms. She thought my need for a male doctor was weird.
"Why would you want a guy examining your dangling bits," she asked amusingly. My reply, "I just want a man doctor. He knows my body and issues better than a female doctor."
"If I was a guy, I wouldn't want another guy touching me down there," she said.
I countered with, "your OB/GYN is a female and she touches you down there. And, up in there I might add."
"It's not the same," she said. "And as a guy, wouldn't you want a female doctor down there. She can be like, oh yeah. Nice!"
"Ummm. Hell no! That would just be weird," I replied.
"What? Are you afraid of getting aroused by the hand of a female doctor," she asked.
"Well, of course," I exclaimed.
"Oh, so you would be aroused by another woman........," she inquired.
And it went on until we went to sleep.
This morning I've been recalling the conversation. And I'm still steadfast in my search for a male doctor. I've never had a female doctor and I just feel more confortable with a male doctor, even if he's going to examine by "dangling bits." And when I'm over 40-years-old (thank goodness that's not for a while), I'm sure he'll be conducting a very invasive examination involving my rear end.
I don't know if I'm alone on this, so I ask you dads, do you prefer a male or female doctor? Ladies, also feel free to chime in on this one.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
There was an interesting article in the Las Vegas Review-Journal yesterday that basically examined whether Las Vegas has "jumped the shark," essentially losing ground in it's popularity as a trendy playground for everyone from the young and wealthy to famous and even ordinary.
Are people tired of the "what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas" mantra and all the exciting debauchery that's associated with it?
As I read the article, I couldn't help but think that it's true. We're experiencing a regional economic recession, the likes of which we've never been seen here before. Casino revenues are down, visitor numbers are down, the airlines are cutting flights to the city, we lead the nation in foreclosures and our governments are facing unprecedented budget cuts.
If we truly have or are in the process of "jumping the shark,"at least the city may one day reclaim its glory. As the article points out, it's famous for reinventing itself. For example, despite the sagging economy, we're currently in the midst of a remarkable building boom, which includes the massive Project City Center, the largest privately financed development in the United States at the cost of $9.2 billion. Near our home M Resort is under construction.
If not, it's time to choose a new city to move to, because we aren't going to stick around and watch it crumble. Lately Seattle has been on our mind. At least there's plenty of water there.
Monday, August 25, 2008
But in order to purchase one I have to pay double the price.
Why, you may ask?
Well, because I've been with AT&T Wireless and it's predecessors for more than a decade and apparently I'm being penalized for my loyalty. To make a long story short, I'm eligible for an upgrade in April 2009 because I'm locked into my current two year contract. I'm not patient enough to wait that long.
As many of your are aware, when you're an AT&T customer they make you keep your old phone for two long years despite the fact that they're constantly releasing new and better phones. If you decide to upgrade early you have to pay significantly more. While I'm no genius in the area of retail marketing, it makes no sense to me. If you allow your customers to upgrade to new technology freely without penalizing them for already being a customer they might actually be more willing to utilize your services longer.
If anybody works in the mobile phone industry, AT&T or other, please enlighten me about this bizarre practice of f*cking people up the ass.
And, yes I'm whining.
And, thanks Dan!
In other news, I woke up late this morning after hitting the snooze button not once, but three times. It's also the first day of school in Las Vegas so traffic was a bitch. Finally, I couldn't find my security badge for work, so when I arrived I had to wait for a co-worker to let me in the building.
Yep, it's definitely Monday.
Updated at 8:40 a.m. - I just found out that somebody nominated me for the Hot Blogger Calendar!?!
Only by being baked in the scortching Las Vegas sun!
I guess it's not such a bad Monday afterall. Since I'm nominated, if you'd like to vote for me, follow the link.
Here's me, along with HotMomma (now, she's hot!).
And, here's the link.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
As advised by his teachers at school, to help Z-Dub with potty training we bought him some "big boy" underwear to don around the house when he can be potty monitored. We went to Target and got him a three pack of Go Diego Go! underwear and a six pack of traditional tightie whities (briefs). He's so excited about his Diego underwear that he just had to wear them last night. And this is how:
Friday, August 22, 2008
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Where did he learn that we wondered? We find it disconcerting that somebody could have potentially called him that. It's incredibly offensive. And he's definitely not stupid.
At least we don't think he knows the meaning of what he was saying. Or at least that's our hope.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Of course, as with most blog awards, I'm encouraged to pass this award along to seven other worthy peers. This is always tough as there are so many talented bloggers out there that entertain me each and every day. Many I aspire to be like someday.
Off the top of my head, I'm going to pass this award onto:Tyler at Building Camelot
Darren at Clare's Dad
Marge at Fear & Parenting in Las Vegas
James at Luke, I am Your Father
Gregory at NooDad
Farrell at Nothing Gained, Nothing Lost
William at Poop and Boogies
Ye all awardeth!
Z-Dub rides a bike from VegasDad on Vimeo.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Monday, August 18, 2008
Before describing it, here's a little history. On New Year's Day in 2006, HotMomma was about 26 weeks pregnant with Z-Dub. Just before midnight she woke up and couldn't breathe because there was a tremendous pain radiating from her lower chest. It was so bad that she couldn't move and could only take short shallow breaths. At the time we were living in the Phoenix area, so I rushed her to Banner Desert Hospital in Mesa where, despite the busy waiting room, she was quickly rushed in and a series of tests were performed. The doctor told us that it could be one of two things: a blood clot in her lungs or pleurisy, which is an inflammation of the lining of the rib cage. They ruled out the blood clot and she was administered IV fluids and morphine for the pain. Yes, morphine. It was that painful.
Fast forward to last night. HotMomma, who coincidently is 26 weeks pregnant with The Fetus, woke up with the same painful symptoms. We debated for a moment, and because there was little that could be done to quell the pain at home, we decided the best course of action was a visit to the emergency room.
While our visit to the emergency room at Banner Desert Hospital was professional and quick, our visit to the emergency room at a hospital here in Henderson was met with confusion, frustration and disappointment. I understand the docs were trying their best, but they really didn't listen to us as we explained the symptoms and past experience. Instead, over a long eight hours they performed a battery of tests to rule out a blood clot, gall stones, and heart problems. What compounded the situation was the fact that when we arrived in the ER, the folks at the desk refused to see us and made us walk to the Labor and Delivery department in a different area of the hospital. Once we arrived there, they refused to see us and sent us back down to the ER. All the while, HotMomma couldn't breathe. Also, our original nurse was not very nice and the room we were given was DIRTY and freezing ass cold. I shivered the whole time. Despite the seriousness of the situation, I joked that I'll probably need a bed myself by morning as I'll probably contract pnuemonia.
I can understand the need the blood tests, x-rays, ultrasounds of the legs, ultrasound of the gall bladder, EKG, etc. We definitely need to rule out potentially life threatening conditions. A blood clot is the leading cause of death during pregnancy. Only about one percent of pregnant women develop the condition though, so it's rare as well. The tests performed did not rule it out, so the doctors scheduled a CAT scan, but actually going through with it was a concern. The high dose of radiation and the dye injected into the body both pose a risk to The Fetus. However, in a life and death situation, you take that risk.
After consulting with several doctors, including HotMomma's OB doctor, the CAT scan was ultimately cancelled. With the symptoms subsiding and the other tests coming up negative for a blood clot, they decided that the risk outweigh the potential negative results. Instead we left with no diagnosis or treatment. Not even pleurisy, which I still believe is the proper diagnosis. They said it could probably be just indigestion. WTF? It was definitely not indigestion.
The docs did however find something abnormal, but probably not too serious, with HotMomma's heart. She will be visiting a cardiologist later this week for an Echocardiogram to determine if it's anything that needs attention. Her OB said that what the x-ray shows is actually fairly common during pregnancy and it's probably nothing to worry about, but it's worth a check.
So there you have it. A night in the emergency room with no conclusive diagnosis. Luckily HotMomma is feeling better this morning. We arrived home at around 10 a.m. and with Z-Dub at his grandma's house, we were able to get some much needed sleep. Hopefully HotMomma's condition will continue to improve so we don't have a repeat of the horrible pain tonight.
Thank you to everyone who left comments of concern and prayers on my previous post. We appreciate it greatly.
HotMomma is finally resting comfortably in a bed after a series of tests. I sit in a simple and extremely uncomfortable chair as we wait anxiously for the radiologist to come and take HotMomma for a risky CAT scan to rule out a potentially life threatening blood clot.
We're tired and scared of the possible side affects such a scan can have on our unborn son. It's a risk we have to take.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
It was an evening date that had been planned days in advance. One both Z-Dub and Talulla (not her real name) eagerly anticipated.
To set the evening off in the right direction, Z-Dub treated Talulla to an amazing dinner of island delights courtesty of one of the city's best restaurants. *Thanks to Darryl at True Island BBQ for our awesome dinner, as usual. The two enjoyed their meal and toddler conversation before grabbing some drinks (milk) and settling in for a movie. The night's feature was Finding Nemo, which happened to be the favorite of both the two love birds.
After the movie was over, it was late. It was time to hit the sheets. Z-Dub and Talulla wanted to sleep in the same bed, but that idea was quickly quashed despite their promises to behave. There will be no hanky panky in this house. Well, at least for the little ones.
Z-Dub woke up this morning to find that Talulla, the object of his toddler desire, was gone. She had slipped out in the middle of the night, leaving nothing behind, not even a note.
But no worries Z-Dub...you'll see her again tonight :)
Friday, August 15, 2008
Here it is:
It was actually really hard to choose just five as all of the blogs I read kick ass. They were all very deserving.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Perhaps someday he'll attend one of the world's elite culinary schools. I wonder if there are scholarships for such places. I'll have to do a little research. After he's done with school he can complete an apprenticeship under one of the world's most celebrated chefs. Later he can branch off on his own and receive critical acclaim from reviewers with the most discerning palates. He'll open restaurants, land book deals and have his own television programs on Food TV Nework. I can't wait.
Hey, one can dream!
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Hooray for Z-Dub!!!!
Want to know why?
Well, because I didn't even realize yesterday was an election day. Apparently a lot of people didn't know either...or didn't care.
I guess because we held Republican and Democratic Caucuses earlier in the year to select our presidential nominees, though equally important, yesterday's primaries were less exciting. The day came and went with little fanfare.
No "I Voted" sticker for me. I feel so un-American today.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Z-Dub is sick today and will not be out to play.
Monday, August 11, 2008
Apparently Z-Dub and his cousin BS (six months younger) have a love-hate relationship. One moment they're laughing and playing and the next they're fighting. After spending several days together this week, they were swinging more to the hate side yesterday. I was constantly playing referee to fights over everything from snacks to toys to playing with the dog. They both had "that's mine" as their mantras and neither would raise a white flag and let there be peace. Instead they employed their power of swinging as they competed in some vicious rounds of boxing. I was about to give up on stopping it and invite some of the neighbors over some betting action. I could have made some serious cash. While Z-Dub is bigger and packs a mean punch, you can never underestimate the slapping power of little BS. And she's got the mad dog facial expressions to go with it. She's the daughter of a tough U.S. Marine. Don't f*ck with her!
Instead of letting them beat each other senseless I had to play U.N. Secretary and impose some sanctions to quell some of the battles. They included confiscation of certain highly sought toys and frequent timeouts. Actually, Z-Dub got more timeouts, because BS cried uncontrollably if you just told her "no." She's tough, but sensative I guess.
Unfortunately, like with conflicted nations, these sanctions were only temporary fixes as no cease-fire held for longer than a few minutes. Although a full-on war never broke out in the iVegasFamily house, border skirmishes continued throughout the morning hours until they both fell asleep in exhaustion.
During their nap I had to clean up the mess. Shortly after Z-Dub woke, but before BS did, HotMomma and her sister arrived home and I was relieved of my commanding duty. Despite that, by the evening I was exhausted beyond words. As I lay in bed to sleep, I thought to myself, "holy crap, it a couple of months we're going to have two kids." I'm screwed!
Saturday, August 9, 2008
We all slept good after it was over.
Now on to it. I paid less this week for gas than I did last week, but the drop in price was less dramatic than it has been over the past couple of weeks. But I think big price drops are on the way. I'm crossing my fingers.
Here's what I paid this week:
Friday, August 8, 2008
Their little boy was born at 7:40 a.m. PDT in California. He weighed 7 lbs. and 2 ozs. and was 20 inches long. Here are a couple photos:
For example, yesterday she was out doing some shopping and came across a store that was having a clearance on all their patio furniture to make way for fall season merchandise. We're in desperate need of such furniture for our garden and we've been waiting for a "big sale." She found a set she liked. It's a five-piece ensemble that includes four comfortable chairs and a table with a small fire pit, which will be useful when our cold Vegas winter arrives (shut up...it gets cold here). The regular price for the set was more than $400 and it was on sale for $199.
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Congrats to their family!
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
HotMomma: "Oh sh*t! I spilled" (an inadvertant slip of the tongue while pouring oil out of a pan into the trash bag).
Me: "Oh quick, here's some paper towels."
Z-Dub: "Oh sh*t!" (from the dinning room).
Two seconds later.
Z-Dub: "Daddy. Oh sh*t!"
Me: "Don't say that. That's bad. Mommy said a bad word."
Z-Dub: "Oh sh*t!"
Five minutes later.
Z-Dub: "Daddy. Oh sh*t!"
Unfortunately, combined with my accidental use of the word while we were parking the car the other night, the word is definitely now part of his vocabulary.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
I didn't have much going on at the time. I was just going through the motions, with little progress made in building a stable life. I had completed more than two years of general education requirements at community colleges in Southern California and took a little more than two years off to work at the former Surfer Publications, publishers of Surfer, Snowboarder, Powder, Skateboarder and Bike magazines in San Juan Capistrano. During that time I was also one of the very first employees at a Capistrano Beach advertising agency that served clients in the action sports industry. Both jobs were incredibly fun, but neither paid much. I was barely able to feed myself and I was tired of renting rooms from other people. I knew that in order to get into a good place financially, I needed to finally earn a college degree.
With the car packed, I left my native California and drove across the Mojave Desert into Nevada to attend UNLV. It wasn't my first choice in a long list of colleges to which I applied and got accepted. Among them was Boston University. I actually got accepted and received a substantial scholarship, but I still couldn't afford the remaining tuition. The same went for University of Tampa and Colorado State University. All I knew is I wanted to go to college outside of California and it had to be someplace where job opportunities were plentiful, because I had to work my way through school. UNLV was out-of-state, but close enough for weekend visits back home.
The city was booming and had plenty of jobs for hungry college students. Las Vegas turned out to be a good choice for me and I sailed through my classes and completed a B.A. in communications, with an emphasis in public relations and a minor in English. During my time there I also had two to three jobs at any given time. They included the college newspaper, a local television station, casino, restaurants and health club. I was a jack of all trades. I look back now and I can't imagine how I survived all of it. I'm exhausted just thinking about my 18-hour days.
Upon graduation I promptly returned to Southern California and landed a job with a prestigious public relations/affairs agency that had offices throughout the state. I spent nearly two years there gaining valuable experience and working on some interesting and often controversial clients. But returning to California was hard. It's expensive there and I continued to struggle financially. It was only a matter of time before I made a decision to return to Las Vegas, where, at the time, life was much easier.
And there is where we get the phrase "UNLV - university of never leaving Vegas." Well, at least for me. There are many different reasons why people use the term. Mine is simple. I have left this city and returned so many times. It's like a giant magnet that keeps pulling me back. Twelve years after first moving here I often drive down Interstate 15, which runs below the towering hotel/casinos along the world famous Las Vegas Strip, and I think to myself "holy crap, I live in Vegas."
Who knew I would end up in the Sin City, married, owning a home and raising a family? Twelve years later it's still strange to me, but at the same time surprisingly comfortable. I guess we're here to stay...at least until the water runs out.
Monday, August 4, 2008
With Z-Dub tucked into his bed, HotMomma and I were finally able to enjoy our evenings without the company of a two year old. This was huge, because prior to that I had to lay down with him each and every night for more than an hour as he fell asleep. It was an annoying routine that needed to be broken, and once we decided to finally take charge and change things success was swift. It was awesome. That is until this past week.
For some unknown reason Z-Dub suddenly won't stay in his bed. Each night I've had to constantly get up over and over and over again to walk him back to his bed, have a quick pep talk, kiss him on the forehead and leave the room. We're talking 20+ times each night and lasting well past 10 p.m. He's used every excuse in the book, including hearing noises, seeing shadows, he poo pooed (although he didn't), he's thirsty, etc. That part is actually kind of funny because of his age. It's amazing how a two year old can think stuff up like that.
But what makes this week's evening events particularly bad is I get to the point where I have to get very stern with him, with a raised voice and threats. It's frustrating and I feel bad because that's not how I want the mood to be before he goes to sleep.
We're hoping this is a brief phase and our evenings will quickly turn back to their still fairly new comfortableness that we've come to enjoy. It's like we're being teased. We got a taste of something good and now it's been taken away.
So now it's Monday, the start of a brand new week. For the sake of my sanity, as well as HotMomma's, I'll be re-reading the post on Stark Raving Dads and experimenting with different tactics and techniques to get us back on track. The game is over Z-Dub!
Saturday, August 2, 2008
Friday, August 1, 2008
Last night I joined Z-Dub in reading the classic Jack and the Beanstalk. Most of us have heard the story, but it wasn't until I read it to Z-Dub that I realized how ridiculously inappropriate the story is for a child. How you may ask? Well, let me tell you.
First, I find it incredibly irresponsible that Jack's widowed mother makes him go to town to trade in their only milk cow for some food. Seems like a short-term solution to a long-term problem. It lacks any forward thinking, or logic for that matter. If you have no food at all, why don't you get a job or grow something? Perhaps you'd even get more out of butchering that cow than trading it in. Equating it to today, it's like trading your car for some quick cash at one of those title loan places. How in the hell are you going to get a job and better your situation if you've traded in your transportation for a quick fix? Not a good lesson.
Second, Jack totally defies his mother's orders and trades their only cow for a few beans from a strange man on the side of the road. Two things are wrong with this with the first being that he didn't listen to his mother. Second, he talked to a stranger and accepted his offer. It's like taking candy from a molester or drugs from a dealer.
Third, after the beans grow up into a giant stalk reaching into the clouds, Jack climbs up upon a castle that's home to a giant. The giant says, "Fee! Fie! Foe! Fum!?? I smell the blood of an Englishman. Be he 'live, or be he dead, I'll grind his bones to make my bread." It's a little gruesome for little kids, but it is a giant and Jack did break into his castle, so who can blame him. But after hiding out like a crafty cat burglar and avoiding being eaten by the giant Jack steals his gold egg laying hen and heads home to enjoy his new found riches. So, it's okay to break into a strangers home and steal?
Fourth, getting greedy Jack goes back up the beanstalk and to the giant's castle to steal again. The second time it was a magic harp. But Jack gets caught by the giant who chases him down that stalk to reclaim his stuff. To "get away with it," Jack uses an axe to quickly knock down the stalk, resulting in the poor giant plunging to his death. Apparently the lesson learned is when you get caught committing a petty crime, to avoid punishment you should kill your victim. Nice.
I realize this book was an adaptation of the original and may not be as you remember it, but still it's severly lacking in morality. The only things that would make this book even more inappropriate or controversial are:
Jacks mother starts turning tricks to make some quick cash. Jack acts as her pimp.
Jack grows some pot and sells in on a street corner in town. When he gets caught by the police he claims it's "for medicinal purposes." When pressed further he kills the cop to avoid arrest.
Jack and his mother are so hungry they cook up and eat the dead giant's body. I'm sure Andrew Zimmern wouldn't even eat it.
Jack and the giant clear up their differences, and instead of the giant being killed, they fall in love and have a gay wedding in California. It certainly would make it more interesting.