Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A parent's concern about the H1N1 vaccine

I am a little nervous when it comes to the H1N1 vaccine.The H1N1 vaccine is on the way to a school or doctor's office near you. Supposedly some kids will be getting the vaccine at their school or at their pediatrician's office ( If the doctor signed up to give the vaccine). NISD has had plenty of media coverage in regards to the upcommimg implementation of the vaccine. NISD is trying to get federal help for the implementation of the vaccine. NISD spokesperson Pasqual Gonzalez estimates that it could cost about 1 million dollars to hire the medical personnel needed at each school.

I am concerned because I want to know more about the vaccine . I want to know more about the side effects. I read in yesterday's newspaper that there will be normal side effects as a result of this vaccine. I don't know how the media and for that matter the CDC (Centers for Diesease Control) can down play the side effects of the H1N1 vaccine. We are not talking about a vaccine for the measles or the mumps. We are talking about Swine Flu. In this Good Morning America interview it lists the side effects of the Swine Flu vaccine.

If my kids are going to get the H1N1 vaccine, I want to know as much as I can about it. I have four daughters that will need to get the H1N1 vaccine in the next few weeks. I need to be prepared, I need to look for the signs in the GMA piece mentioned above . I want to know how soon I can expect any side effects of this vaccine.

Am I going to let my kids get the H1N1 vaccine? I still don't know. There are too many questions that us parents need to be concerned about. I don't like the fact that the side effects are being downplayed. My kids have all had the regular flu vaccine but we are talking about more of a serious threat than the regular flu. At this point I am still uncertain. Am I being paranoid? Probably. All of us parents need to be paranoid about something like this. After all, these are our babies.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Getting ready for the holidays

I can't believe I am writing this post . The holidays are just around the corner. Whenever I think about the holidays I think about presents. I'm I going to have enough money for presents and bills. Even though things seem to be getting better, I think a lot of people are going to be in the same situation this year. I think this holiday season there will be more shoppers looking for deals. (Sorry big department stores. I think your holiday sales numbers are going to be bad once again.)

Don't get me wrong I do love the holiday season. I like the hustle and bustle. I like the holiday cartoons .

I love watching these holiday movies with the kids. I need to start thinking about Christmas lists.

I am already asking myself what kind of budget am I going to have? How much do I allow for my wife? How much do I allow for my kids? What about my parents, nieces and nephews? What we do in my extended family (brothers and sisters) is draw names. Its is a lot easier on the wallet. I only have to buy for one family member.

We also have my wife's extended family. They also draw names for Christmas presents. I think you have to in today's economic environment. Did I mention the Holiday parties? I need to get past Halloween first.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Witnessing a rollover accident

'As you grow older, you'll find the only things you regret are the things you didn't do. " ~Zachary Scott

Just witnessed a rollover accident on Ih 10 east. I was about 40 to 50 yards in back of the SUV when all of a sudden I see it lose control. The SUV violently swerved and then rolled two or three times. It rolled into traffic comming to a complete stop. It looked like a woman behind the wheel . I saw her walk away from the accident. The first thing I thought about was my little girl in the backseat of my car. I was able to stop my car in time without getting hit from behind.

I stopped long enough to make sure the woman was ok. Plenty of people stopped to make sure she was ok. My other thought was getting out of the car on a busy highway. No thanks. I stayed in the car. But seeing a rollover accident in person is very scary. The accident happened so slowly. It was very surreal. I am glad the woman had some guardian angels with her.

You know things could have turned out worse. It did not so I am thankful. I always tell myself that life is so short. We need to live like today is going to be our last. Whether we realize it or not, we are only here on earth for a short time. We need to make the most of our time here.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Work relocation the sequel

In a previous post I mentioned that I relocated to a different part of the city. Our office is located near Castroville Texas. When we build out in the "hill country" we are actually intruding on wildlife. As a result of building in the "hill country," I am going to see a lot of "roadkill."

Some of the "roadkill" I have seen while driving to work:

Hogs! Roadkill

Also seen: Ringtail Cat-Roadkill

I have also seen a cow outside the fence. Walking alongside the road. Not roadkill. Could be.

Skunks of course -Roadkill

I have also seen coyote and armadillo roadkill while driving to work. I am learning about Texas wildlife while driving to work every morning. I'm wondering what I am going to see tomorrow?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Our gift to each other

You don't choose your family. They are God's gift to you, as you are to them.

-Desmond Tutu


Even though I am on the road, I am thinking about you guys. I want to know what you all are doing right at this moment. I want to give you all lots of hugs. I also want to know if you are behaving for your mother. I hope so! What kept me going while I was away was the fact that I kept busy and was wanting to do a good job. Keeping busy meant that I would not have that much down time. Keeping busy also meant time would go by faster and that meant getting back to you guys that much sooner. I keep mentioning the word "time." For a family man on a business trip I'm not sure time is a good thing. I think time is the enemy because it goes by so slow when I am away. Almost like it does not want me to get back to you all.
As the quote states we did not choose each other we are God's gift to each other. God chose us to be together and I would not have it any other way.

Love Dad

Monday, September 14, 2009

RIP Patrick Swayze

Patrick Swayze lost his battle with pancreatic cancer today. I have seen just about every one of his movies with my family. My family is sad to see him go. I know I am . I hope someday there is a cure for such a horrible disease. I asked my wife and daughters if they would name their favorite Patrick Swayze movies:
  1. Ghost
  2. Dirty Dancing
  3. Roadhouse
  4. Red Dawn
  5. Point Break

I will always remember you as Dalton in Roadhouse.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

In denial about needing bifocals

I realize that I am getting a little bit older. When someone is in their 40's (yours truly), the vision starts to go (the hair also starts to go but that is another blog post!) I have been in denial that I need bifocals. When I was a kid getting bifocals meant your were getting old.

My optometrist says I need bifocals ever since I told him that I have been having trouble reading paperwork up close. When I hold anything close to my face to read it is all blurry. The chart I use on my desk everyday is somewhat blurry. I have to hold it at as far away from my face as possible.

Some people my age are fighting with the condition known as "Presbyopia."According to the Mayo clinic's website, Presbyopia is the gradual loss of your eyes' ability to focus actively on nearby objects — is a not-so-subtle reminder that you've reached middle age. A natural, often annoying part of aging, Presbyopia usually becomes noticeable in your early to mid-40s and continues to worsen until around age 60. (Yikes!)

You may become aware of Presbyopia when you start holding books and newspapers at arm's length to be able to read them. If you're nearsighted, you might temporarily manage Presbyopia by reading without your glasses. I really struggle at work reading stuff up close. My optometrist wrote a prescription for bifocals but I decided not to get them. It was a combination of being in denial and the clerk at the local Eyemasters really talking me out of them. I was being talked out of bifocals that I really needed? I hope she was not a supervisor! I just opted for my regular prescription without the bifocals.

According to the clerk at Eyemasters the bifocals can really take a period of adjustment. The clerk went on to say that I needed to pick out a frame that would be suitable for the bifocal lens. I was not going to get a frame that made me look like I stepped out of the 1970's TV show. The larger frame was needed to fit the bifocal lens. There is the lens that is divided in half with the bifocal part on the bottom of the lens and there is the "progressive no line bifocal. Right then and there I told the clerk just to give me my regular prescription. My optometrist also gave me a prescription for contact lenses. I wear my contacts almost every day. I know there is such a thing as bifocal contacts but I hear they are expensive. I think my days of wearing contact lenses may be coming to a end . But I need to take care of business today. I have had enough of not being able to read up close.

I went to Target and bought me a pair of Foster Grant reading glasses. I was not sure what "power" of reading glasses to buy. So I just tried different pairs of reading glasses and practiced reading. I was in the contact lens aisle so I practiced reading some of the labels on the contact lens solution boxes that were on the shelf next to the reading glasses. After trying them out everything seems better. I also read the newspaper and even a few books to my daughters.

I don't like getting old. I know I can't fight the inevitable. My next optometrist visit in January I have decided to go through with bifocals. Wish me luck.

P.S If you see me sprawled all over the floor next to some steps you know why. I am probably getting adjusted to my bifocals. Just peel me off the floor and point me to the fountain of youth.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Missing my Johnny Lightning lunch box

One of the fun things I like to do while school supply shopping is to look at the new lunch boxes that are out. My kids buy lunch sometimes. They also like to take their lunch. I am assume they get pretty bored with the lunch menu in the cafeteria. I know I would. Today there are lots of lunch boxes to choose from. There is the Iron Man lunch box , the Spider Man lunch box and the Harry Potter lunch box. I'm sure for every movie that is out there is some kind of lunch box made.

I always took my lunch. I sometimes took my lunch in a brown paper bag. Other times I had my own lunch box. One of my first lunch boxes was a Johnny Lightning lunch box. This was from a line of race cars before Hot Wheels came out. It was so cool. It was a lunch box from the 1970's (I'm giving away my age!) It was metal and when you rubbed the picture on the front of the lunch box you could feel the image of the car. The thermos was even better. The picture of the race car and it's driver was larger than life.

I started researching my first lunch box a few months ago. I thought it would be so neat to have it. I started looking on eBay for one. Every time I started bidding for this lunch box I always got beat out at the last minute. Just to see my lunch box on the internet for the first time brought back so many good memories. My mom used to make my lunch the night before and put it in the refrigerator. That way my lunch was ready to go in the morning. The funny thing is that when I would eat my lunch at school my sandwich would always be soggy. I think after that my mom started making my lunch in the mornings!
My daughters don't know much about lunch boxes from the 1970's. They give me a confused look when I mention the lunch boxes I had. There was a lunch box made for all kinds of TV series like Chips, Charlies Angels, The Banana Splits, The Hair Bear Bunch, The Six Million Dollar Man and the Bionic Woman.
If you run across a Johnny Lightning lunch box you know where to find me!