I hope you all had a terrific holiday season. Mine was pretty enjoyable, considering I’m still feeling post-surgical pain in the shoulder and am limited in my activities. I can tie my own shoes and button my own shirts now, so at least I don’t feel like an overgrown toddler.
Now that Chareva’s parents live here instead of just outside Chicago, we stayed home for the holidays. We used to make a triangle trip every year; first to central Illinois to visit my family, then on Chicago visit hers. I won’t miss making those drives.
Perhaps the best present we received was the surprise news that Chareva’s younger brother Alex bought a house in Franklin. He has a baby daughter who’s as adorable as adorable gets. Now we know we’ll get to see her grow up. My girls are already lining up for future baby-sitting duties.
Last we’d heard, Alex and his wife were planning to live in either Portland or the Chicago area. The whole time he was looking at and bidding on a house about 10 miles from us, he managed to keep it a secret. Fortunately, his wife had a video camera running when he broke the news by giving keys to the new house to Chareva and her mom. Their reactions were priceless. You can bet that scene made it into the DVD I create at the end of each year.
Speaking of which, I just managed to finish all the video editing and get the DVD done before my vacation ended. Here’s a sample, the video I put together to commemorate the low-carb cruise to Alaska:
Jimmy and Christine Moore arrived a few days before Christmas and left on Christmas day. The weather is certainly better around Thanksgiving, but it was nice to spend a Christmas with them for a change. As far as my girls are concerned, Jimmy and Christine are Uncle Jimmy and Aunt Christine. The more family around on Christmas, the better.
We managed to squeeze in a few rounds of disc golf, but agreed not to make them part of the official record. It was cold outside, and we played after rains had soaked the pastures. Between the slippin’ and slidin’ and my post-surgery weakness, I didn’t exactly rack up impressive scores. Jimmy whooped me quite convincingly in the last two rounds, but he’s such a good friend, he only mentioned it a couple dozen times. (Just kidding, Bro.)
I finally got around to writing down plans for the new year yesterday. I’m not against New Year’s resolutions, but as I’ve mentioned before, I think too many people go about them in a way that sets them up to fail – that is, they make promises in terms of results (I’m going to lose 30 pounds by June) instead of actions (I’m going to follow this-or-that diet and exercise plan). Take it from an old guy: you can control your actions, but you can’t control the results.
I know what my diet plans are, but of course the exercise plans at this point boil down to Whatever the surgeon and physical therapist say I can do. If I had my way, I’d be at lifting at the gym tomorrow, since the atrophy on my left side is already becoming obvious. I made the mistake of flexing both arms in front of a mirror over the weekend to see what they’d tell me. The right arm said Adult Male. The left arm said Probably Hasn’t Started Shaving Yet.
I had a follow-up visit with the surgeon today and asked what I can do for upper-body exercise. The short answer is: almost nothing outside of physical therapy. The physical therapist told me I’ll start working out with weights in another couple of weeks. The “workout” will consist of curling two-pound dumbbells. I saw the two-pound dumbbells sitting in a rack nearby. They’re pink.
Pink?! Seriously? Am I required to wear a skirt as well? Next thing you know, I’ll start crying during the she’s-going-to-lose-him scene in chick-flicks and stopping to ask directions if I’m lost. I may need to watch a Schwarzenegger film or two every weekend just to maintain a sense of balance.
My main goal in the upcoming months is, of course, to finish the film version of Fat Head Kids. That one’s very much under my control, and I know I can get it done … even with a left bicep that looks like it belongs to an adolescent.
Happy 2018, everyone.