Thursday, July 9, 2009

May Roundup

I blink and it's July. Not exactly sure how that happened. I believe we left off in our tale of The Amazing Adventures of Jenni at April and the Hawaii trip. Seems so long ago now.

 
 

While I was in Hawaii my man of steel (Jonathan) and my sweet sister Suzie worked diligently alongside our friends Dani and Clayton to renovate our backyard, staining the deck and fence. This was all under the guise of making our outdoor area shine for the Today show taping. Ahh yes, did you know I was supposed to be on the today show? They were going to do a segment on the rise in popularity of supper clubs in the down economy and just when we had everything tentatively scheduled swine flu took over the headlines and out the window went the proposed fluff piece. I didn't even get my 15 minutes of fame. :( At least I got a nicely stained deck and fence though right?

 
 

The first weekend in May I actually stayed home (shocking!) and got my left arm looked at by a local doctor that Saturday. (Sunday I took my travel group on a tour of Annapolis, MD topped off with a sailing trip and a gourmet lunch I catered. We all had a great time and Dani and my sister Suzie stood in as assistant organizers and did a great job!) I had meant to schedule the appointment with the bone specialists but when I asked friends what kind of doctor that was they replied "osteopath". So I booked an appt with a local osteopath. Imagine my surprise when I got there and found out that a DO is really just one step above chiropractor and most of them end up operating as family med doctors since getting a DO is easier than getting an MD. Not really a bone specialist by any means. All she did was refer me to get x-rays and then when the results came back referred me to a *real* bone doctor (an orthopedic) to interpret and work with the results. This is all the result of an injury to my left arm sustained on a tubing trip last year on vacation. I was tubing with Jon down a river, our tubes tied together, when we began to approach a 1 ft drop. I panicked and asked Jon to help us swim toward the calmer side of the river sans drop. He told me to relax and let go and have fun. In my sheer terror I grabbed a rock as we passed it and attempted to hold on with all my strength. That didn't last long, soon my left arm gave out in weakness and over the drop we went. We lived, as Jon theorized we would. But my arm was left with serious pain for the whole week and when we returned home I went to my doctor and asked for help. She gave me something to lift and upon observing me lift without any deep agony declared it was probably just a muscle pull and it should get better on its own in a few weeks. It never did. So a year later, I finally decided to get help. Long story short (too late) my arm actually broke in the accident- the tip broke off- and when it healed the torn muscles grew back around it and like a splinter it irritates the muscles as they move. So I'm on a month of physical therapy 2x a week and if that doesn't work to end the pain I might need surgery.

 
 

The second weekend in May the man and I took a mileage run to Santa Ana and turned it into our own 13th wedding anniversary getaway. We stayed at a Marriott just down the road from Disneyland and spent the day there enjoying the rides and shows. The Aladdin performance there is really really good- broadway caliber and if you get the chance to pop in and see it, it's well worth it. We enjoyed the alone-together time and laughed a lot, especially over a chinese menu handed to us by a delivery guy on the street. It offered such 'Engrish' delicacies as "bbq friend rice", "chicken fingas", and a side of Italian spaghetti with every entrée (what?!) . We kept the menu for posterity and future giggles.

 
 

The third weekend in May I took my travel group (http://www.meetup.com/nova-travelers) to Rome. I've got so much to tell you about that trip that I'll cover it in a separate entry.

 
 

The fourth weekend in May (memorial day weekend) the hubby and I jetted off to Seattle on another mileage run. It was my first as a Gold elite (middle tier of the 3 tier elite status rank on Delta) and I was so excited to have made that accomplishment. It's not too hard for people who travel with work to reach 50k miles flown in a year, or even in 5 months like I did, but it's quite difficult for someone financing all their own travel and doing it on weekends. There is a whole science to analyzing trip fares and performing all the segment calculations to squeeze out the max miles on a run and to keep the cost at or under 3 cents per mile. Anyways, we had a great time in Seattle. I love connecting with my sister in law Liz (hubby's brother's wife) because she's so sweet and really brims with the love and joy of God. She's like a little sun in our universe of people, brightening everything. It my second trip to Seattle in my life, and since on the previous trip I didn't do much sightseeing we really put some effort into visiting some cool places this time around. We went on the Seattle Underground tour and that was very very impressive. Seems downtown Seattle used to be about 1 story lower than it is today but after a big fire they took the opportunity after razing the buildings to build the city up an entire story, leaving the original storefronts underground after the streets were raised. You can tour the labyrinth of underground buildings and old sidewalks. The group that leads the tour is quite knowledgeable and a lot of fun. This is definitely a must-see tour for your next visit. Besides the underground tour, we also took a cruise through the locks- indescribably awesome- and filled ourselves to the brim with good food from Ivers. Jon got in a lot of wrestling and playtime with the nephews while we were there- I think they really were excited to have him there. Its harder for me because boys in general (not just theirs) seem so alien to me [always want to smash things and be aggressive and so much energy] since I'm a frilly girly girl but I still loved spending time with them. I just have no frame of reference for what is normal boy aggression. It's good I never had boys, I'd be trying to turn them all into sensitive-musician-wouldn't-hurt-a-butterfly-metrosexuals or something. Even though I like Alpha males, they scare me a bit.

 
 

The last weekend in May we stayed at home and it was nice to catch up with Suzie. She'd been living with us since April yet I'd spent most weekends away from her. I love her so much, and it was such a blessing that she came to live with us for awhile. She really helps me to see me through her eyes, which makes me feel better about the person God made me and is calling me to be. She has so much going for her - she's bright and funny and very extroverted. And she is so loving and giving. She took the pressure off me with mom and dad a lot as she stepped in and took over some of the caretaking while she was here. I often pray that she finds the path God is whispering her toward, whatever that may be. I want the best for her.

 
 

While Suzie was here she documented her stay with photography and videos. I hope you will check them out.

 
 

The photos are here:

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=123737&id=603259739&l=a35c195547

 
 

The videos are here:

Sailing - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VB6Mcbvwtww

The Parks Family (Jon Jenni and the Girls) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQ84C2YApog

Danielle Rides Gabe to Victory - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y0QoKtL3iCQ

 
 

 
 

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