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Yesterday was my birthday. 

I’ve always looked at it as the one day of the year that reminds me that those that SHOULD care, don’t.  I know that’s a really negative way to look at it, but there you go. 

The girls both called to wish me a happy birthday and Joe brought home a cute card and a Home Depot gift card when he got home from work around 8:30.

The twins that work for me as student aides brought in a cake and a balloon.  Their birthday(s) are tomorrow.  They’re just adorable and I’m sure going to miss them when they move on to their higher levels of education this Fall.

Lisa took me out for an ice cream (at my request) and we had a Snickers Ice Cream Sundae.  Not bad, but when you get to the bottom (after the ice cream) it’s all caramel, caramel peanut/nut chews, and chocoalte syrup.  My teeth hurt just remembering that!

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I have to go in for an MRI/MRA on Thursday.  They’ll be contrasting and imaging the brain and the neck to: a) rule out the possibility of an aneurysm; b) rule out carotid artery blockage; and c) see if the MS has progressed since the last imaging was done in 2000.

I’ve had a “whooshing” sensation in my head for the better part of a year — it comes and goes and I’ve often thought it might have been related to sinus pressure and stuffiness as it only ever happened when I turned my head left while I was walking.  Now it does it when I’m laying still, sitting still, or turn my head in any direction.

Adding to that, my hearing has decreased a bit more, no big surprise, but they said  that I’m “…not a candidate for amplification.”  Translated to English, I think that means I don’t need hearing aids.

I haven’t had a period since February but have still had the PMS’y types of symptoms — pain in the ovaries/fallopian tubes, water retention, headache, malaise, and irritability.  Weird how, during menopause, you just can’t break free of the yuck.  I think this is proof that God was male…

Getting older really sucks.  Lisa made mention this morning about turning 40 in September and I turned to her and said “That’s about the age I was when things started turning to shit.”

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This is a great picture of my oldest and my youngest.  Michelle laughed while telling me that, just after the picture was taken, someone asked her “So, this is your LITTLE brother?”  She said “OK, so he’s my YOUNGER brother!” 

It’s not often that I have two of my three kids together at any given time and it’s almost impossible to have all three together.  It’s a possibility, though, that this year’s Thanksgiving will have all three of them together, at my house, for the holiday.  If not Thanksgiving, then sometime in December because my middle born has a wedding that she’s in.  Any way you shake it, I’ll have the three of them together and you can betchyer bippie I’ll have pictures done of all of us.  The three kids (with one son-in-law), the grandkids, and me and Lisa. 

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It’s hard to believe that summer is half over already.  With such dry weather as we’ve had, some of the shrubs and trees have already started to turn.  Our burning bush has some leaves that are turning red and a tree outside my window at work has some leaves that are turning the bright yellow that tree always turns in the Fall.  They’re terribly stressed from the dry heat we’ve had.  In the past week we’ve had a lot of rain so hopefully that will slow things down a bit.  We already have flowers starting on our mums, too.

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Lisa has been doing quite well being self-employed.  She’s been working regularly, for the most part, and we’ve managed to at least break even financially.  We’re still doing battle with her formerr employer over unpaid vacation and sick time, and we’ve asked for a hearing for the denial of unemployment benefits.  Her employer flat-out lied about why Lisa left.  She told them that Lisa quit because she was mad that she was denied a request for a day off.  At the hearing we’ll present all the documentation that I have meticulously been maintaining and, no big surprise here, we’re going to submit the company handbook that directly contradicts some of the things the former employer said as well.  We might not get the unemployment benefits for Lisa, but her former employer isn’t going to come out of this looking very good, since her drinking at work will become a matter of public record if anyone wants to look up the transcripts of the hearing.

Anyway, she’s really enjoying what she’s doing.  She has done things like install windows, storm doors (complete with creating frames), replace cedar shingles on a house, build/cut new window ledges and threshholds, build shelves in closets, re-glaze picture windows, paint, remove carpeting, and general grounds maintenance.  She’s loving it.  So am I.  She’s a much happier person since she fired her old boss.

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So, did you watch the debates last night?  I was impressed with some of the responses and not so impressed with others.  Some of the things that impressed me (if you can believe what’s said):

I think the people who are powerful in Washington — big insurance companies, big drug companies, big oil companies — they are not going to negotiate. They are not going to give away their power. The only way that they are going to give away their power is if we take it away from them. — John Edwards

We’ve got to understand that there are corridors of shame all across the country. And if we make the investments and understand that those are our children, that’s the kind of reparations that are really going to make a difference in America right now. — Barack Obama (speaking on reparations for slavery)

And I’m excited that I may be able, finally, to break that hardest of all glass ceilings.

But, obviously, I’m not running because I’m a woman. I’m running because I think I’m the most qualified and experienced person to hit the ground running in January 2009.

And I trust the American people to make a decision that is not about me or my gender, or about Barack or his race or about Bill and his ethnicity, but about what is best for you and your family. — Hillary Clinton (on whether she’s feminine enough)

But the first thing I want to say — and I want to speak for everybody, I believe, on this stage — anybody who’s considering not voting for Senator Obama because he’s black or for Senator Clinton because she’s a woman, I don’t want their vote. I don’t want them voting for me. — John Edwards

But I think it is terrific. We’re up here arguing about who’s going to be better for women, because isn’t that a nice change for everybody to hear. — Hillary Clinton

Senator Edwards said his opposition to gay marriage is influenced by his Southern Baptist background. Most Americans agree it was wrong and unconstitutional to use religion to justify slavery, segregation, and denying women the right to vote. — Reverend Reggie Longcrier (who asked the question that nobody really answered)

You don’t understand — they don’t understand. They think we can save them.

And guess what? We can. Twenty-five hundred American troops — if we do not get the 21,000 U.N. troops in there — can stop the genocide now. I have called for a no-fly zone. Everybody agreed, but you need troops on the ground. — Joe Biden on Darfur

We just heard a White House spokesman, Tony Snow, excuse the fact that the Iraqi legislature went on vacation for three weeks because it’s hot in Baghdad. Well, let me tell you: It is hot for American troops who are over there with 100 pounds worth of gear. — Barack Obama on pulling out of Iraq

I happen to agree that there is no military solution, and the Iraqis refuse to pursue the political solutions. In fact, I asked the Pentagon a simple question: Have you prepared for withdrawing our troops? In response, I got a letter accusing me of being unpatriotic; that I shouldn’t be asking questions. — Hillary Clinton on pulling out of Iraq

The Democrats have failed the American people. When we took over in January, the American people didn’t expect us to give them a Democratic version of the war. They expected us to act quickly to end the war.

And here’s how we can do it. It doesn’t take legislation. That’s a phony excuse to say that you don’t have the votes. We appropriated $97 billion a month ago. We should tell President Bush, no more funds for the war, use that money to bring the troops home, use it to bring the troops home. — Kucinich on pulling out of Iraq

The principal of my high school, his name was Justin E. Dinney (ph). He was a priest, and he taught me that the single most serious sin humanity could commit was abuse of power, and the second most serious sin was standing by and watching it be abused. — Joe Biden on his favorite teacher

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Michael Vick has been ordered to stay away from pre-season camp until the NFL can complete a review of the charges against him in the dogfighting allegations.

Former star Emmitt Smith says that the Feds targeted Vick because of his star status.

Well, hello?  First off, a guy with that “star status” is going to be talked about a lot more and, when the Feds get wind of something of that magnitude, aren’t they obligated to investigate?

And, is Emmitt naively suggesting that Vick wouldn’t have been charged or even looked at (in an operation of that magnitude) if he was a nobody?

C’mon Emmitt — you’re smarter’n that!

I hope the NFL fires Vick and bans him from the league.  But that’s just me

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