Sunday, March 30, 2008

Tomorrow is my birthday

Tomorrow is my birthday... woo-hoo...

I usually look forward to my birthday, but this year has been different. I don't really care about the aging part, I just wish that my life was less stressful right now. I'm stressed at work and in my personal life...

My goals for April are to recover from the break-up, exercise & sleep more, and not plan anything else in April. I'm booked for most of April already and it seems like work is going to be crazy for the next two months due to today being our fiscal year end.

That said, I better get to sleep!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Nikita: Brian's new SUPER-tired puppy

Check out Brian's super-cute, super-tired puppy Nikita! I've never had a dog really, so I had no idea that doggies could be such hard sleepers!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Vegas Trip

I'm back from Vegas and TIRED! After getting off to a slow start on Saturday, we finally hit the road and had a relatively uneventful ride out to Vegas. We made the ritual stop at In-n-Out in Barstow.

We checked into the Las Vegas Hilton and Stephen at the front desk gave me a free upgrade because it was my birthday! And then after being in the room for a bit, there was a knock at the door and it was room service! Stephen also sent up a gift basket for my birthday! He is definitely getting a "thank you" note from me! I was thrilled!

For dinner, we went out to Mon Ami Gabi and got a table out on the patio. It was fabulous! The weather was perfect and the people watching was really fun. The best part? We had a front row view of the Bellagio water show every 15 minutes!
Water Show at the Bellagio

Steph & Chris

Jon & Shane

Travis & Ron
Dinner itself was pretty good. After dinner, we went over to the Bellagio to check out the new set-up in the atrium. It's gorgeous inside, as usual! Check out this snail!!!

And the pretty umbrella flowers in the atrium area!
Shane & Steph in the Bellagio atrium

After that, we sadly, did no gambling and went back to the hotel to play Race for the Galaxy so we could get to bed early and do some serious gambling on Sunday. Oh my, we are dorks! I tried to get them to play for $1 per point, but no one seemed that interested!

On Sunday, we had breakfast/lunch at Blueberry Hill and then headed over to the Pinball Hall of Fame and I got my fill of Addam's Family & Fish Tales! Then we finally got to the gambling!

We headed over to the MGM Grand because that is our poker room of choice. Travis and I played from about 3 PM - 9 PM. I think by the time we left, I was down about $75 and Travis was down about half that. We went out to the Burger Bar, dropped of the non-gambling folk back at the hotel then headed back to the MGM Grand for more poker! We got there around 11:30 PM and stayed until 4:30 AM. By that time, Matt, our new private pilot friend had gone to bed and all the fun people left, so we took off too. I tried to talk Travis into hitting Casino Royale for some craps, but he wasn't havin' any of that.

I woke up on Monday morning because Travis' phone alarm went off at 8 AM. I contemplated getting up to go play more poker before breakfast, but sadly the Las Vegas Hilton doesn't have a poker room. So I just went back to sleep... as Chris said, "Thank God Travis needs to back to LA tonight for class, otherwise we'd never get out of here..."

Overall, we all had a great time and I got lots of poker in. Unfortunately, no craps, but that will have to wait til I go with my friend Gary who loves craps and poker! Trip is being scheduled for June as I write this! I also found out that if you have a player's card at the MGM and play an average of 4 hours per day, the pit boss will call the front desk to have them knock up to $40 off your room night. The catch is that you have to book the room through the MGM website or by phone and you can't already be getting some special deal they have. It would've worked out great for us if we had known that because the rooms were listed at $140 per night so it would've only been $100 per night! Next time, I'm definitely doing that.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Broken Up

I guess you can't technically "break up" with someone you're not "exclusively dating," but that's beside the point. Or maybe that's exactly the point. Either way...

We (42 & I) were fighting much too often. He thinks I was picking the fights, which is probably what it seemed like to him. Meanwhile, I think I was trying to talk to him about stuff that I was concerned about and our communication styles(?) when dealing with more important things (to me at least) just did not match up. At all. There were several other smaller things, but this one seemed to be the major problem.

My ex-boss used to tell me that you need to find someone with whom you share a backbone (like the core beliefs/values) and someone who shares your neuroses. It seemed like we shared a similar backbone so that part was good, but we weren't so lined up on the neuroses part. I know I have my own and I really need someone that can deal with them. And hopefully when that happens at some point in the future, I'll be able to deal with his. Whoever he is.

The part that really sucks is that I do like him and we could probably be good friends, but we were just not a good romantic match. Attraction? Yes. Effective communication? Not so much.

The part that's really great is I've learned more about myself through this and hopefully that will help with future relationships.

I wasn't at my desk to respond to the last thing he said to me (yes, this all happened via IM) and it's been bothering me, but I'm just letting it simmer for now. I don't think calling him will do much good at this point. Plus, I can't believe that he really thinks I don't care, even now. And if he does think that, I have nothing more to say to him.

I'm so glad I'm leaving for Vegas tomorrow morning! I need the distraction!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Short-term goals

Wow, at the beginning of the year, I had big ideas of making New Year's Resolutions... Well, it never really happened! I've been incredibly busy with work and it's really cut into my personal time. I am not happy about that, but that's just how it is right now.

So, my goals for the next two weeks are to be positive (about work and love) and get my 10,000 steps in a day. It's really pathetic how few steps I get if I'm not making an effort to do something about it. Today, I logged 10,672 steps. Of those, I had 8,100 aerobic steps, which were steps I took while walking for exercise. I walked on my two 15 minute breaks at work and then for 40 minutes after work. Without those conscious exercise-y steps, I would've clocked a measly 2,500 steps!!

Getting 10,000 steps in a day might not be realistic, but I need to make an effort to bump it up. I can tell I've put on a few pounds since New Year's and it's unacceptable!

Friday, March 14, 2008

TiVo Rewards

TiVo used to have a program that gave your "points" for referring new customers to TiVo. I think you'd get 5,000 points per referral. They had a variety of products you could turn them in for, but nothing ever really caught my eye, so I've been letting them sit.

I got a notice a few weeks ago that they were discontinuing the program and you have until sometime before the end of May to redeem them. So, I cashed in my 15,000 points for some TiVo ornaments, coasters and most importantly, an XM Radio MyFi portable receiver with three months of free service! This will be perfect for the Vegas trip I'm taking next weekend. I doubt we'll be getting regular radio reception in the middle of the desert!

The only time I've ever used XM is when rental cars have them (most recently on my trip to Gulf Games last month!). I love the 80s station (of course) and a bunch of others. This might be perfect for me if I start having to drive to the other locations more than I have. I'll see how much I use it during the first 3 months to see if it's worth continuing the subscription. If not, I can always sell the MyFi on eBay!

Monday, March 10, 2008

"Boyfriend" Update

It's been a while since I've done an update on how things are going with 42. We just spent the past weekend together and I think we're both in agreement that this was our best weekend yet! The first few were good, but I always felt like there was something missing at the end of them. But this time was different. I didn't feel like there was a missing piece, which was a huge relief.

We had a great time... He took me to the park and he taught me how to throw a Frisbee in a whole new way for me. He plays Ultimate and he's awesome at throwing that thing! I was already OK at the "normal" way of throwing (thanks to coaching from Seth last year), but this new way was pretty fun too. We did that until it started raining and then headed home for some Race for the Galaxy!

That night, I met some friends he's known since high school. Those guys were pretty fun! I can see why he likes hanging out with them every week. On Saturday, he took me to meet his parents. I had no idea before I arrived for the weekend that that was the plan, so I was a bit surprised! On our way, we picked up his brother, so I got to meet his immediate family. His parents are really nice and just really sweet people. The best part was I felt like I got to know him better by seeing where he comes from. And of course, could I imagine having them for in-laws? Yeah, I could. Oh, and they seemed to like me too, so that part of the weekend went really well.

Oh... I know I called this my "boyfriend" update, but here's something I haven't really mentioned previously: we're not technically "boyfriend/girlfriend." I had previously said that I had a boyfriend, but after further examination (you know, like having a conversation with him!), I found out that we weren't dating exclusively, at least not in his opinion. Not that either one of us is seeing/pursuing anyone else (at least not that I know of, but who knows?), we're just not seeing each other "exclusively." I go through mental gymnastics about this every day (sometimes multiple times a day!), but for now, I'll just have to stick it out. At least until I can't stand it anymore. I still view him as my unofficial boyfriend, whether that's right or wrong. I just don't call him that anymore in conversation. I just use his name or "the guy I'm dating." And so far as I know, he doesn't refer to me as his girlfriend, so I think we're OK there. As far as dating other people, I just don't have much interest to actively seek anyone else out. I guess I could technically date someone else, but I'll just cross that bridge when I come to it. I want to see how things go with him first

And so far, they seem to be going well! Definitely better than they were a week or two ago. One good sign is that when we talked today about our next rendezvous and he said that the next completely free weekend for him was the third weekend in April, I was upset. Not at him really, but at the situation! That's six weeks away!! Having a long distance relationship sucks sometimes!

And just to be fair, not everything is perfect. We have our "issues" (both individually and together) and we're dealing with them. Hopefully, they'll even get worked out. But sometimes (like today!), it seems pretty darn impossible, especially when we're only going to see each other every 4-6 weeks. But oh well. That's how it is! I can only deal with reality and the reality is we're just trying to figure it out as we go along.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

I'm off once again

I'm off once again to go see 42. I leave tonight and return on Sunday night. I doubt I'll be online much between now and then. I know I'm overdue for an update on how things are going with him. I think there's a good chance that I'll post something next week!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Gulf Games Day #2

Since I worked a lot of the first day of Gulf Games, I half-heartedly tried to make-up for missing out on gaming by playing lots of games. I knew I'd never win "friendliest gamer" if I didn't do something! I ended up not playing *that* many games though, but I had a lot of fun!

The highlight of the day was actually the last part of the evening! Sandi, Frank's wife, led a small group of us in a game of Werewolf! Lately, whenever I've played, I'm actually moderating, so it was nice to actually participate. I also got to play with people I'd never played it with and let me tell you, Frank is good! Jon came out as the Seer first round and Frank also claimed to be the Seer and I was having a tough time trying to decide who to believe. It was tough! Frank was actually a werewolf, so I ultimately chose the right person to vote against!

What was really neat is that Sandi made viewers that have your "card" in them. That way, you don't have to look at a card, you peep inside the viewer to see what you are. There's no worry about other people seeing your card or anything! They were really neat! I am going to have to ask her how she made those and see if I can make some myself!

I played with lots of folks on Friday, which helped me catch up to Mary, who, as a first time Gulf Gamer, was blazing a trail playing with everyone she could! Lucky for me, she was gone most of the day at the Unclaimed Luggage store, so it gave me a chance to catch up a bit. Lucky for her, she found a brand new, super-cute, pink Nintendo DS for $60.

And, the moment that may have made all the difference in my quest to win "Friendliest Gamer," I got Jeff (who normally only ever plays 8 hour games) to play a quick, two player game of, what else? Race for the Galaxy! He already knew how to play, so we managed to crank out a game in about 20 minutes before he headed out for the World of Warcraft Guild Luncheon.