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R.A. & Melisa -
Good morning, everyone and a very Merry Christmas to you all!
Today is Wednesday, December 23. Two more days till Christmas and I can’t
wait. The tree is up, the letters have been mailed, the cookies have been
baked and everything is good to go.
I was sitting here at my desk on this very early morning thinking about what
I should write. It’s been so long since I wrote anything at all that I knew I
should do something. I don’t know how many people actually look at this web
site. Maybe more than anything it’s a way that I can record things for my
own personal journal that I can read when I’m old. Or, maybe the boys will
look back on all these pages and say “Oh yeah, I remember that” or maybe
“Huh….I had no idea”. Either way, it’s something that is out there so I should
keep up, or at least finish with a quick nod to 2009 and the way we finished
up the year.
During the past few months we’ve had a few things go one. Of course, we had the requisite trip to Disney. This year Brooks
was a big taller so he was able to ride some things that he couldn’t before. For example, he rode his first real roller coaster,
Goofy’s Barnstormer. I remember when Griffin rode the first time. The look of sheer terror on his face was something else.
Brooks, however, had a ball and actually cried when it was time to get off. We all know the boy has no fear and he certainly
lived up to his reputation. He had a great time riding all the neat things and just experiencing new stuff.
Griffin had a good time, too. His tastes run a bit different that Brooks’. Whereas Brooks is more of a thrill seeker, Griffin
is all about the adventure. He likes things like the Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular and….hmmm. You know, I just thought
about it, we didn’t see the stunt car show.
But anyway, Griffin had fun, I believe. But he’s a fun boy so he generally finds a way to have a good time.
Melisa, however, did not have a great time. At least not at the end. While we were playing our round of miniature golf she
stepped badly off a curb. No one saw it, we just kept playing. Then, GG turned and saw her sprawled on the ground. Oops.
It turns out Melisa tore the tendons in her ankle. Not good. Those things take longer to heal that a broken bone so, Melisa
has been in a boot now for six weeks and has at least 2 more to go.
Halloween visited us, of course. Griffin dressed as Darth Vader and really did look pretty neat. Brooks was Buzz Lightyear
(Space themes) and I think he liked wearing the costume. We went Trick-or-Treating at a friend of Griffin’s neighborhood.
It was OK but the weather was miserable. Cold and wet but the boys had fun.
Let’s see….any big events occur since the last writing. Oh, you may have heard about the 500 year flood that visited us. It
was in all the papers. Yes, we took on a bit of water. Actually, we took over 18 inches of rain in basically a 6 to 8 hour
period. Not cool. It was funny (ha….ha) because Melisa and I were just sitting around hearing the rain and, for some reason
I thought “I wonder what’s going on downstairs”. “Downstairs”, of course, being the recently finished basement, complete
with new carpet. Well, I wandered doan and into the back only to hear water running, yes RUNNING behind the walls. Dang!

Well, I headed outside and started digging a trench in front of the house to channel the water away. I had to remove the
wonderful decorative brick that was now serving as a dam and holding in water, causing it to seep underground.. It finally
started flowing properly but the damage was done. Soaked carpets and water behind the walls.
And, aside from the actual house we were now cut off from the world.
We lost power and water, which remained out for several days. So, not
knowing what was going on around us I thought I’d take Griffin to school.
I thought that at least they’d have power, hot food and water. Well, that’
s when I discovered we pretty much lived on an island, surrounded by
bridges that were now washed out.
We stayed home for days. Luckily we had food and bottled water. And,
with the pool we were able to fill the toilet tanks so we remained
hygienic. And, with a pool we were able to take a very cold bath, although
I did boil water for the boys to get a warm bath.
OK, the family again. Brooks loves school. LOVES it! And he’s
apparently pretty good at it. His teachers rave about him. I knew
he was a genius but now there is a consensus. He likes to sing, read
stories and play and he’s even starting to learn Braille. Melisa is
also learning, which is pretty neat.
When he started he wasn’t to sure about being left but then he
would check with us, saying “you’ll be back”. As long as he knows we’
ll return he’s good with it.
Griffin is doing well in school but he doesn’t love it quite as much
as Brooks. Yes, he’s even more like me. But, he’s very smart. Wait,
that didn’t come out right. I should say AND he’s very smart. We
are extremely proud of him
You know, not only counting the “ankle incident”, I can’t really say I had a
great time at Disney. Sure, being there with the boys is great but Melisa and I
talked about it and it just wasn’t that much fun. It seems we did very little but
really didn’t miss anything. When you just don’t care about not doing stuff
maybe you should give it a rest. At least for a while. So, we pretty much
decided that the beach is the way for us next year. Maybe somewhere else, too.
I’d put some pictures about the Disney trip up but, sadly, they are stuck in
camera limbo. I need a special adapter to retrieve them. They’re there, they’re
just not currently accessible.
But, the roads are back now and everything is pretty much back to normal. There are lingering effects, though. For one, the
basement has a musty smell that I just can’t get rid of. Also, it is suspected that the rainfall and saturated ground caused a
shift in the pool area and caused one of the underground pipes to move, thereby causing all the water to leak out. Not cool
and definitely not an easy fix. Our stupid pool guy said that if I had let him put in a retaining wall that wouldn’t have
happened. What bonehead doesn’t realize is that, retaining walls keep it from going over the top, not underneath. He’s an
idiot anyway so I take it for what he is.
As you may recall, Griffin has a cat now, named Chopper. He loves that cat and the cat is pretty find of Griffin. He’d have
to be to put up with the way Griffin carries him and messes around with him. But they get along great. Griffin’s own
“personal cat”.    
Oh, funny story……not long ago, Melisa and Brooks were at home doing nothing in particular. I believe they were talking
when Brooks suddenly tells Melisa “Hush up and go fix me lunch”. Images of John Bender in “The Breakfast Club” appear in
my mind. If only he’d asked for a turkey pot pie.
OK, We'll end on that note. I’ve added enough. At least I added something. I have to end the year on a positive. Goodness
knows next year will bring challenges. See “Moron gets elected” headlines in the paper. Three more years….three more years.
So, Merry Christmas to everyone and a very Happy New year!
Merry Christmas