Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year, New Goals

As 2009 comes to a close, we've decided to look ahead and make the most of what we've got together. In that spirit, we have set a goal move date for Colorado Springs. I think it helps to have something we are working toward and a deadline, per say. This helps us map out how we want to proceed with finances and such.

So, our anticipated move date:
Spring/Summer of 2011. It seems so far away ...but then again, so did our wedding for a while. And even though we are going to miss terribly the friends we've made here, we're welcoming a fresh start in a new state with new friends and new adventures.

On the bright side, for those we're leaving behind...we'll be a wonderful vacation destination should you want to come visit us - this of course applies to both West & East Coast peeps!

Rico just finished up his 2nd sleep study, this time with the CPAP machine (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure). The one he will actually use will go over his mouth as well. Doesn't he look so pleased??

This experience was completely opposite of the 1st study. He woke up alert and with oodles (yes I said oodles!) of energy - something that hasn't happened a long time! He was actually perky in the morning! Next step is to order the machine and have it adjusted for him (luckily he has great insurance and it covers 80% of the machine's cost), which should be either today or Monday. ::is that a night without earplugs i see in my future??::

Rico also starts a new quarter at school on Monday - just ordered his books ($300, ouch!). This quarter will be all online though so he won't have to drag himself to school at night after work. Hopefully he will be able to get all of his classes in and he will have completed his AA by Dec of 2010.

We're going snow tubing on Jan 16th. Hopefully we'll be able to get a big group of friends to go with us as well to make it extra special. This will be my first time tubing (at least on snow - I did get on an intertube pulled by a boat back home, but of course that was much warmer!)!!

PS: A quick shout out to my very first follower! Miss BellaKai at Porkchop's Modern Life, welcome to the blogging world!

Good bye 2009 , Happy 2010 Everyone!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

101 in 1001 Days

January 1, 2010 - September 27, 2012

As a tribute to the New Year, I've been challenged to create a list of 101 things I would like to get accomplished in the next 1001 days (about 2.75 years).

The Mission:

Make a list of 101 specific things, using clear wording to avoid ambiguity and encourage fulfillment, which you would like to accomplish in 1001 days. These can be things that you’ve always wanted to do but haven’t; things you’ve started but never managed to finish; things you’ve always wanted to try but haven’t; things to reward yourself for hard work; things about clearing personal hurdles that have long stood in your way of being happy, successful, confident and comfortable. We all have our own personal demons and the only way to conquer them, in my mind, is to recognize that they exist and commit to battling them. That’s all we can do, really.
For some, the prospect of such a list could prove daunting, stressful. Others might simply be disinterested. But I’m a list person (as Rico can tell you!) and clearly marking a few goals for the future allows me to focus on an upcoming task (or tasks as they are).
So I’m giving it my best shot, not expecting to complete 100% of my list as some goals may not be financially possible, with my commitment to do the best that I can.
MY LIST (in no particular order):

1. Learn Photoshop Completed 4/5/10
2. Hang all framed photos in the house
3. Trade in Malibu for SUV
4. Ask for a raise
5. Pay off all credit cards
6. Meet Rico's grandmother
7. Grow an herb garden
8. Renew my passport with my married name
9. Learn how to use the manual settings on my camera
10. Try skiing
11. Eat with chopsticks through an entire meal
12. Bake a cake 4/21/10
13. Climb to the top of a tree and take a picture of the view
14. Take a hot air balloon ride
15. Go snow tubing
16. Drink more water
17. Go to the gym 4 days a week for 3 weeks (3/3) Completed 4/24/10
18. Publish/sell one photo
19. Read 101 books (15/101)
20. Go to a concert
21. Contribute 3% to 401K Completed 1/3/10
22. Start a Keep The Change Fund
23. Learn to fly a kite Completed 4/10/10
24. Save $1001 (75/1001)
25. Sell wedding decor on craigslist
26. Buy a new bed (preferably Tempur-Pedic)
27. Go Skydiving
28. Clean out the closet and donate to Goodwill Completed 2/28/10
29. Stomp grapes (to make wine)
30. Go on a picnic
31. Go bowling
32. Spend either Thanksgiving or Christmas with my parents
33. Eat no desserts for 1 week.
34. Submit a photo to a photography contest
35. Watch 100 of the Top 250 of IMDBs movies (0/100)
36. Horseback ride Completed 4/10/10
37. Go on a road trip
38. Blow glass Competed 1/30/10
39. Build our Emergency Fund
40. Meet one of my e-friends
41. Go see the Troll under the bridge
42. Take a pottery class
43. Go whitewater rafting
44. Attend a public New Years Eve Party
45. Organize my music on my iPhone
46. Host or attend a Couples Game Night
47. Vote in the local politics
48. Shoot pool
49. Cook dinner for parents
50. Get pregnant
51. Host a girls night in
52. Move to Colorado Springs
53. Have a candlelit dinner with Rico at home
54. Try one new recipe per month (3/33)
55. Go target practicing
56. Clean off bookshelves - donating or selling used books we don't need
57. Go to the Zoo
58. Walk behind a waterfall
59. Visit the San Juan Islands
60. Explore Portland, Oregon
61. Upgrade my laptop
62. Go to Canada Completed 3/14/10

63. Visit a state I've never been to
64. Join PostCrossing
65. Go Putt Putt Golfing
66. Complete our wedding/honeymoon scrapbook
67. Watch fireworks
68. Replace burnt out bulbs with energy efficient lights
69. Buy a new TV stand to organize our living room
70. Host a party
71. Get a dog
72. Go to a movie with Rico that I don't want to see
73. Complete a food log for 1 month
74. Get a facial
75. Tip 50% for outstanding service (0/1)
76. Go to a comedy club
77. Start a snowball fight
78. Visit Las Vegas
79. Take a dance class
80. Go to Library and get books instead of buying
81. Eat at 10 new restaurants (1/10)
82. Write a Will
83. Weigh less on Day 1001 than I did on Day 1
84. Go on a zipline
85. Get new bedding
86. Get a manicure
87. Float down a river
88. Visit an Apple Orchard in Washington
89. Build a snowman
90. Lose 10 lbs
91. Lose 20 lbs
92. Lose 30 lbs
93. Lose 40 lbs
94. Lie in a hammock
95. Go skinny dipping
96. Get a pedicure
97. Stargaze in an isolated area (like Texas or Colorado flat lands)
98. Send a care package
99. Donate $1 for every task not complete at the end of 1001 days
100. As I complete my list, write about my experiences.
101. Make a new list of 101 things to do in 1001 days!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Sleep Study Results

Rico followed up his sleep study with a doctor's visit to review the results. Our hopes of a quick and easy surgery to fix it were sidelined for now.

We were already told that he has severe sleep apnea, but we didnt' realize it was to this extent. During any single hour, Rico woke himself up 77 times!! No wonder he feels worn out in the morning! He's not getting any sleep! In order for surgery to have worked, he would have had to have numbers between 40-50.

Another concern the doctor has is that he only get 67% of the oxygen he needs which is super low. The doctor's orders: CPAP machine (it's either that or a Tracheotomy)! Because Rico's oxygen levels were so low, he's not a good candidate for being put under to have any surgery.

So, Rico is going back to do one more sleep study on Monday the 28th to try out the CPAP machine. After that, we need to go back to dieting and exercising regularly. Weight is a major factor and contributor to this disease, so if we can control the weight, we have a chance of controlling the sleep apnea. If we can reduce Rico's waking times to between 40-50 times, then he might qualify to have the surgery for his deviated septum (which should also help with his sinus issues and bloody noses).

**On a side note, I'm really impressed by how fast all these results are coming back and how quickly everything is being scheduled, especially around the holidays!

Monday, December 21, 2009

He survived!

"Worst night of sleep in my life" is what Rico said about spending the night away from me... of course, that could be all the sensors, as well as the poking and prodding that was going on. I choose to think it was the former. ::There is no harm in letting me live in my delusional state::

Below is proof of the torture chamber...Rico spent over 12 hrs getting monitored. We should have the results in the next 2-3 weeks.I also went to the doctor today. Dr. Wallace ordered blood tests for me to rule out PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Disease) as a reason for my anovulatory cycles. I'll get that done tomorrow and have the results in a few days (probably Monday due to the holidays though).

Christmas is on Friday...all the presents are wrapped and now all we're waiting for is Santa to show up. We've lit up our house so he can find us easily! You can't tell from the picture, but those are penguins underneath the window in the flower bed. I like all white lights and Rico loves the multi-colored, so this was our compromise.

Friday, December 18, 2009

On my way into work today

Gorgeous sunrise after a very rainy week. Perfect for our trip to
Seattle tonight!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

9 days to Christmas...

Tonight we're having our Emerald Downs Christmas party, which is exciting because I haven't seen some of my co-workers outside of work since the wedding. I don't think it will be a wild and crazy party but I'm all for free food and drinks!

Tomorrow is our 3 year anniversary :). We're celebrating Friday by heading up to Seattle to see the Christmas lights and having dinner. It's becoming a tradition for us. The Seattle Christmas lights was part of our first date, then Rico proposed under the lights a year later. We would have waited to celebrate our 1 year wedding anniversary in Seattle but the Christmas lights will be down by January 17th.

We have some good news...Rico is going in for a sleep study this Sunday. This is the first step in the process of getting approval (or at least insurance approval) for surgery for his deviated septum. The surgery
is normally considered cosmetic so insurance usually doesn't pay. The exception is if he is diagnosed with Sleep Apnea (which most likely will happen), the insurance should cover it since it's considered a medical/health threatening condition.

9 days til Christmas and I can't wait! We put up lights outside this year...we're one of two festive apartments in our complex. I will get a picture soon of Rico's hard work - he did an awesome job. Speaking of Christmas, we got an early Christmas present ... we're going to Florida in February for a week. How awesome is that?! It will be great to get a reprieve from the Northwest winter and to see Mom and Bucky for the 1st time in almost a year and half (The last time we saw them was September of 08 when we visited NC and my grandfath
er was down from Nova Scotia).

Next year, we're trying to figure out a way to spend one of the holidays in NC with my family. It didn't work out this year but Rico is excited to see the OBX during Christmas, if we can make it work.

This is our little Christmas tree this year (not the best picture...makes it look puny, lol). Hopefully, we'll have better pictures at Christmas. You can't see it, but it was snowing outside when I took the picture.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Weatherman was right, unfortunately!

When I saw this this morning, I knew I would need to bundle up...No, you're not misreading - that really does say 12 degrees!
Luckily, it's not raining outside or else this would be a solid sheet of ice, instead of just the flakes on the windshield.Ya think?? I have such a smart car...apparently it needs to state the obvious

Friday, December 4, 2009's cold outside!

With the weathermen predicting a chilly high of 35 degrees on Sunday (and an icy 14 as a low), here are our festive holiday family photos, as promised! {Click on the pictures to view them larger!}And my most favorite of them all...

Thursday, December 3, 2009

It's almost time...

to debut our family Christmas pictures, that is!

I mailed out our Christmas cards today so be on the look out for those...and that means I can
finally post our Christmas pictures we had taken. I've been absolutely dying to post them (I think they came out awesome if I do say so myself!) but Rico said to keep the pictures under wraps until the cards are out (hence why the Christmas cards are being mailed earlier than normal - I just can't wait any longer!).

Friday, November 27, 2009

Happy Turkey Day!

And we did! No fires in the oven, a yummy turkey, some delicious homemade pumpkin pie and a fun family gathering - we have so much to be thankful for!

The kitchen table
Some festive decor
The only thing that could have made it better would have been spending some time with my family back home. Miss you guys!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Here's to 3 Day Work Weeks!

Wow! It's been almost a month since my last post. We've been quite busy since Halloween. Rico is finishing up his mid-terms in school (my handsome husband is doing awesome and has some of the best scores in his classes!) and is pondering following up his AA in Accounting with a pilot's license! How exciting is that?!

This past Saturday, w
e trekked up to Seattle to see the Trans-Siberian Orchestra (traditional Christmas music set to rock music with a laser light show) and it was great! I have no idea how they run around, up and down the isles and still play their instruments and sing without missing a beat. But, it definitely put us in the holiday spirit!

Speaking of the holidays, we went looking for a Christmas tree this past weekend, though to no avail. We've decided to go with a fake tree this year since we, in our infinite wisdom during couch buying, decided that we
wanted a large comfy couch. With the large comfy couch, comes the lack of space for a live tree (there is no way I'm getting tree sap on the new couch before it's even paid for!). Rico joked that we should move the kitchen table into the garage and put the tree as the center of the dining room. It would be gorgeous there, but then where would eat and have Christmas dinner?? Besides, we'd have to disassemble the table and that's just asking for trouble.

Thanksgiving will be a small one this year, compared to last year. It'll be the four of us (us, Erika and Tony) and all the leftovers we can stomach! Rico & I both have a 3 day work week and a 4 day weekend coming up. We should go do something but we'll probably end up staying home in a turkey coma!

We got our holiday photos done for the annual Christ
mas cards this year. They came out better than I expected, so I'm happy! Here's a preview (you'll have to wait until the Christmas card for the real thing):

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Halloween!

The Drunk Monk and his Vampiress go haunting!
Now it's time to put away the costumes and start thinking about Thanksgiving and Christmas!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Hawaii in Photos

Here's a summary of our trip:

What we left:
Our view from one of our balconies - Sunrise and Diamond Head
Diamond Head
A much better view than that rainy plane window! The view from our other balcony.
View from the beach to our hotelErika and I dipping our toes in the water the first day
The plumeria - my favorite flower
Our first excursion: Hanauma Bay, Dole Plantation and the Polynesian Cultural center
Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve - Rico's favorite place to snorkel
Diamond Head from Hanauma Bay
Just a little windblown!Dole Plantation: they had the best pineapple ice cream ever! I wanted to bring a pineapple home to everyone but we went to Dole too early in our vacation (it would have been bad by the time we made it home).
A pink pineapple
Rico being himself lol
How Kahlua Pork is made...delicious!
I give full credit to Rico for these fire shots... he is awesome with the camera at nightWe also went on a Haunted Lagoon Ride at the Polynesian Cultural Center (we weren't allowed to take pictures, sorry!) and it was awesome! By far, the best Haunted anything we've been to. They actually had people coming out of the water and grabbing our legs!Our second excursion: Circle Island Tour, a full day of driving around the island with a tour guide.
Makapu'u Lighthouse
Halona Blow Hole
We tried Star Fruit right off the plant at one of the locations where they film Lost.
Ringing the bell for good luck and prosperity at Byodo-In Temple

Chinaman's HatPali Lookout - overlooking the windward side of the islandOur 3rd excursion: Turtle Safari... kind of misleading since we didn't see any sea turtles. We got to go snorkeling again though. Poor Rico - I didn't apply the sunscreen well enough and he ended up with red stripes!
I know it's sad...we went all the way to Hawaii and ate Mexican food at La Cucaracha (the food is awesome despite the name!). What can I say... my husband is 1/2 Mexican, you can't deny the blood! Our last sunset
Overall, we walked until we had blisters on our feet and our wallets were empty. A successful trip by our measure!