Siren

My cousin got married in Hot Springs, Virginia the other weekend. I went out for the ceremony. Now that the kids are two, my wife and I figured that buying four plane tickets for one person to attend an event was a little superfluous.

Growing up in Pennsylvania, I’d actually never been to that part of Virginia before. And living in Indiana now, I don’t know if I’m just tree-deprived or what, but man that state is gorgeous! Hairpin turns included.

I brought my Switch with me, eagerly looking forward to some time to myself. I got some writing and reading in under my belt, but I also played an S-ton of Switch. I’d purchased I am Setsuna, a game I’d had my eye on for a long time, specifically for this trip. Yet, when a friend loaned me Mario Kart and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild for my travels, all I did was play Zelda. A game I’d already played and beaten on his Switch.

In fact, I’m still playing it. Much to my detriment.

Gaming-wise, the Switch is the greatest thing that’s ever happened to me. And the worst. It’s portable nature means its never far from my side and I’m always playing it. After playing Zelda on my friend’s machine, the final nail in the convincing-myself-coffin to buy my own was that now that my kids have transitioned to their toddler beds, it means we’ve pretty much lost our family room for nightly hangout space. The room is right across the hall from their bedroom, so just being in there will wake them up. Our retreat is back into our own, now baby-free, bedroom with my X-Box 360 to watch movies, the last iteration of Apple TV, and our old TV from almost ten years ago. Sensing a trend here? Outdated technology.

My Switch comes with me of course. I never know where I’ll be allowed to hang out and play games, so having a console not far from hand is a great perk. It also means that as I type, say, this post, I keep glancing over to that blue and red siren sitting on the edge of my desk.

If I was having a hard time getting back into Altered Egos, then the Switch isn’t helping things.

Know what? I think that’ll do for blogging today. I just remembered that there’s a gentleman in a hot air balloon selling monster masks that I need to go speak with.

Of Pork and Prose

I forgot my work glasses again which put me behind. I don’t know if its mental conditioning or has something more to do with the flood of dopamine and endorphins post workout, but I’m definitely more motivated to write in the morning first thing. If I miss my window, I feel my mind and body becoming more sluggish by the minute until I’m forcing it out of me just to get words on a page. Of course, my exhaustion today could also be attributed to last weekend …

We had our baby shower on Sunday. In lieu of a lady’s luncheon, we had a cookout for family and friends. She wanted to include me in the process and I wanted to eat pulled pork so everybody was happy. Kidding aside, the day was wonderful. Great weather, great food and great company. I felt kind of spoiled being showered with so many gifts, but not that spoiled. We got a lot from our registry, but there’s still so much more to purchase. Who knew that babies needed so much stuff?!

As she’s the one from this area, most of the guests were her friends and family. I had a couple of surprise visitors by way of my best friends from back home (Pennsylvania) and another couple of good friends from Chicago. We made an unlikely little social gathering, but it was pretty cool. It was great seeing everybody, but it meant hosting those out of town guests and late nights. After a few days, my body and mind are wrecked. Rich food and a hot sun will do that too, so I think I just need to recover. I was out of work yesterday for the tail end of the weekend and the result is that I no longer know what day of the week it is anymore. I’ll bet whatever you want that it is, in fact, Monday.

Just like listening to your body when you know you’ve pulled something means skipping the gym that day, I don’t think I’m capable of a full word count at the moment. I’m taking copious notes for tomorrow and you better be damned sure I’m making it all up. I’m rounding to the nearest 25 though … come on, I’m not that crazy.

I know I’m just making excuses and what I really need to do is push through the pain, but I’m gonna take a page out of my future childrens’ books and go full on baby this time. I’ll work on the prewriting though so I can hit the ground running tomorrow. Pinky promise 🙂

There and Back Again

Hello, everyone!

I’m back from Florida. After driving back and forth to a wedding in Pennsylvania the other week and then to Florida and back, I am sick to death of being in a car. But it was definitely worth it. At a good clip, it’s a 14 hour drive each way and definitely something that can be done in a day. But with the wife being super pregnant and all, we split up the drive and stayed in a hotel on the way there and the way back again. That said, we pushed ourselves to do most of the driving on the first day so we could get down there on Sunday and make the most of our annual pass before it expired the very next day.

After having an annual pass and visiting about 3-4 times a year for the past couple of years, it was strange to be down there knowing we couldn’t just waltz into a park whenever we wanted to. Not that I had any real desire to wait for the newly refurbished Splash Mountain or anything – although it was pretty freaking hot – but just knowing that I couldn’t even if I did was a little irksome. I’d grown used to the luxury.

It was a great trip though. We stayed at Saratoga Springs due to its proximity to Downtown Disney. Most mornings were spent out by the pool and then we’d stroll over to DTD to do a little shopping or something. The highlight of each day was usually dinner. In the past, dinner was always planned in advance but we usually showed up as sweaty messes like everybody else from spending all day out in the Florida heat, but this time we could slow it down. You know, take a shower. We wined and dined. Well, she couldn’t wine and I scotched but only back in the hotel room.

The trip was bittersweet. Don’t get me wrong, I had an amazing time and I’m so happy we went. I’m rested and recharged to do what needs doing, but it also marked the end of an era. Yes we may never get annual passes again, but we’ll also not ever vacation just the two of us again. Next time, we’ll be carting around two little dragons. We’re going from a 3-4 times a year cycle to a maybe we’ll go next year? … Probably wait until they’re older. The drive back was spent discussing the line between when do little kids start to get something out of a vacation versus how much work it now takes Mom and Dad to take them in the first place.

So we’re back and that means it’s time to kick my other work into high gear. I spent most of yesterday swapping cribs out of the nursery and putting together a changing table. I have a lawn that needs mowing too, but I’m upping my word count to make sure the novel is finished by August. Ideally, I’d love to knock it out sometime in July so I can clean up a draft or two and get it in the hands of some alpha readers. That way when I’m not sleeping, I’ll at least rest a little easier knowing that some work was still being done on it.