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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

California, or No California

I'm hoping most of you read my last blog entry, or the Twitter postings earlier about the passing of Rachel's father on Saturday morning. Now that a few days have passed by, I just wanted to give you an update as to what has gone one, is going on, and what the plan is for the following week.

Saturday
Rachel called me to let me know that the funeral might be at the end of this week, possibly Friday (that was the soonest the funeral home could arrange a date for Rex). Well, after talking to her aunt, her aunt thought it would be best if Rachel come home for a little while (since she had been out in California for a week and misses the girls and I) and to then have the funeral next week. So Rachel arranged a flight from Stockton to Las Vegas, and asked if I would pick her up. I said sure.

Sunday (9/27)
Since I thought the funeral was going to be shortly after Rex passing, like Tuesday (9/29) or Wednesday (9/30), I asked my parents if they could come down on Friday (9/25) and help watch and play with the girls a little so I can relax. Please note, I have had my mother-in-law, Kristi, helping me out by having her watch the girls a few hours each night while Rachel was away (9/21-24) so I can get some stuff done here at the house (i.e., laundry, cleaning, straightening up, business work, etc.) so I wouldn't go crazy. Watching two kids alone from morning to night can really take it out on a person... Especially if they are trying to do their normal job of picking up and dropping off computers and iPod's, and Home Owners Association stuff. ... Where was I? (reading) Oh yeah, my parents came down and helped clean and straighten up the house a little. They told me before they drove down to help that they had to head home on Sunday so they could be to their jobs on Monday. This was okay. It was enough to help me relax a little so I could handle the next few days alone with absolutely no help (since Kristi was planning on driving out to California for the funeral). But plans changed in California and Rachel was going to be coming home for the week.

My parents headed home around 1PM on Sunday as planned, and I took the girls over to Kristi's house so she could watch them while I drove out to Las Vegas to pick up Rachel at the airport. But since I had been doing all this "Mr. Mom" work, I left a little earlier than I had originally planned and stopped at The Virgin River in Mesquite and played a little on the slots. In less than 20 minutes, I had gone up and down, but left $10 richer. So I cashed out my winnings and headed back on the road. I made it to Vegas still a little early than expected. So instead of driving in circles at the airport and wasting gas, I parked in Economy and took a shuttle over to the airport. Waited until I met up with Rachel in baggage claim. We took the shuttle back to where I parked the car and then headed over to Margaritaville since I was hungry and wanted to eat at a place that we do not have in St. George. Oh, and for the record, Rachel suggested Margaritaville, not I. I would have gone to, uh... Treasure Island had she suggested it.

So we parked at the Flamingo parking garage, walked in and put our name on the waiting list. We walked and checked out a few shops that are north of Margaritaville on The Strip. Walked back and had lunch. Since it was now dark by the time we finished, and because grandma Kristi had to work in the morning, we headed back home to pick up the girls. Made it home around 10PM our time, came home and put the girls to bed.

Monday
On Monday, Rachel had to take a phone call from her aunt in California at a certain time since they were talking to the funeral home and making plans so Rachel knew what was going on and could pass the info on to me and others.

They have arranged to have the viewing, funeral and graveside service on Tuesday, October 6th in Modesto and in Sonora. Right now, I am debating on whether or not I should go. I would like to go, to pay my respect... But if I go, that means we have to bring the girls. If I don't go, then I have to stay here with the girls for 3 to 4 days alone-- I don't think I would be able to handle that many days alone. So, Rachel and I have been talking and we were thinking about flying out there, but since the girls are now 2, they do not qualify to fly for free. So we would be paying for four round trip tickets. So we may drive out on Monday (10/5) and drive back on Wednesday or Thursday (since Rachel has Monday through Friday off of work).

My main concern is that the girls like and are easily entertained by watching videos on my iPod touch (attached to the back of my head rest while I drive) ... But I tried to take this 3rd one (2nd refurbished) apart to check it out inside. But first, it was not responding to touch, and then I cracked the color-LCD display... So it is hopefully being replaced under the "accident warranty plan" that I purchased when I bought it back in December. So right now, I am without iPod touch... (If you are wondering, I am no longer offering to work on iPod touch and iPhone's because it seems Apple doesn't want you to be able to fix them without more problems).

If anything changes, I'll try to keep everyone updated by posting it here or on Twitter.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Goodbye, and Thank You Rex

I just got the word that Rachel's father, Rex McBride, just passed away to lymphoma cancer. June 29, 1954 - September 26, 2009

First, I want to say you were a man unlike any other. You loved your family, helping others and your dedication to the LDS Church and the Boy Scouts of America.

Second, I wanted to say "Thank You, Rex" for not killing me when you found out that I married your first (born) beautiful daughter Rachel. I'm sorry that I never asked for your permission too. But I'm thankful you still took me in as a son and treated me with respect ... Even though I had to work much harder to do so to prove that I was in fact worthy of your daughters hand.

I also wanted to say thank you for being there when we needed help financially a while back when we were struggling.

I'm very grateful that you got to see two little grandchildren come into this world while you were here. Sure, they may be brats... But they loved their grandpa very much.

Please watch over our other little ones in Heaven. We will let them know how hard you worked, loved your family (no matter how far apart you were from each other) and the church.

We have many good and funny stories to tell the kids about you. So until we meet again some day...

Meeting his granddaughters for the first time (October 2007)...

(October 2007)

The day of the girls blessing (October 2007)

The girls first birthday (July 2008)...

(July 2008)

Visiting "Grump"-pa out in California (April 2009)

Rex's Birthday in St. George (June 2009)

We will miss you Rex. If you knew Rex, could you please say a few kind words about him on his special webpage: www.rexmcbride.com

(I wrote this on the 20th, because I knew that I wouldn't be able to handle writing this when he passed...)

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Latest News About Rex

As you may know from my Tweets, right now, Rachel is out in California with her two sisters to visit Rex (their dad, my father-in-law) most likely for the last time.

If you didn't know, Rex has battled and beaten cancer twice since first diagnosed in 1995. Last year, he sent me a text message saying he wanted my opinion about something. He let me know that the doctors had told him the cancer was back and he wanted to know how to tell his girls (Rachel, Aubrey and Heidi). So when he came to visit us here in St. George for the girls first birthday last year, we were all sitting around and he told them the bad news.

Throughout this past year, he was given an opportunity to try some test and medicine to hopefully beat cancer once again... But they had rules to sign-up and to be allowed in this testing procedure. Because his body's vitals were above the required measurements, he was not allowed to participate.

The doctors then said that he could try chemo again this time, but he has had chemo in the past and he did not enjoy it (nor would anyone else). Plus, they said that there was only a small chance that it would work, and after chemo, he would be needed to be waited on... He wouldn't be able to do anything himself. Since he wanted to be free and use what strength he had to enjoy life, he decided not to go through with the chemo treatment.

Then in April, we thought he had a week or two to live. If you remember, Rachel, the twins and I, packed up and flew out to California to visit him for a week. Luckily, because of medications and breathing oxygen, he appeared and acted normal again.

But now that 4 to 5 months have passed, Rachel got word from her aunt that the hospice told them that his body is starting to shut down. Rachel and her sisters were planning to head out next week to visit, but once they got this news, they did what they could to trade shifts so they all travel out there and be with him right now.

The last text I received at 9AM this morning was that they were on the edge of Sonora, California. But since Rachel and I have T-Mobile, after you get off the freeway to start to drive up the mountains where their grandma lives (where Rex is at), the signal for service is cut off. So I just called about an hour ago to make sure they arrived safe, and they did. But since the three of them were up all night driving, they are now taking catching up on rest.


As more news comes in, I will send Twitters and they will be posted on the right hand side --->>>

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Signing Time with Adelyn & Chloe

Lately, we have let the girls watch a DVD Series called Signing Time. They have picked up on a lot of words from it. We had to watch the DVD's as well so we knew what they were saying to us since they are still not chatting up a storm. I know the girls know many more words in American Sign Language, that they have learned, but I wrote down a few of them on a list so I could have them sign them for you. If I mislabeled a sign, I apologize.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

3/40

Three years ago today, I married my high school sweet heart. Although we never dated the entire time, we first got to know one another back then and then we kept in contact through the years until we were married. But there was a very good reason that we met and I am very glad that we did. And if you didn't know, we met through the internet... We were pioneers. We did it before it was cool.

And something, even for yours truly being a geek, that I never knew about the internet... It was successfully performed/created 40 years ago today back in 1969 in a lab at the University of California, Los Angeles, when two computer successfully sent data from one computer to another through a cable. Today, that is what we call "networking". But the concept of sending data from one place to another (server to a computer via the internet, and vice versa) was born! It wasn't until 1990 when the Internet as we know it today was born.

Rachel and I eloped three years ago today, September 2nd, just because that was the earliest and most convenient day for the both of us to do so. I had no clue that the internet was created on September 2nd. I call it ironic.