Made it

After a sixteen hour shift yesterday, I can say I made it. AEP is over and normal life can resume. It’s been a crazy, productive and draining seven weeks, but I’m proud of how it went. However, I’m relieved the grind is over for a bit. Today was so dead, they let us leave early which was a total gift. It was slow, I was starting to fall asleep at my desk.

Since I got off earlier than expected, I was able to get some stuff down around the house. I took care of the laundry that’s been waiting to be fold since AEP started. I’m only kidding, the laundry hasn’t been sitting around that long. While I folded laundry and took care of the dishes, I finished the current season of the Great British Bake-off. I love that show and will be baking a ton over the next four days.

The best part of yesterday was receiving videos and photos of my oldest’s promotion ceremony. It was so much fun to see him being promoted. Moreover, I loved seeing the camaraderie that exists within his squadron. Honestly, love seeing how well he is loved and treated. It definitely puts my mom heart and mind at ease. The Hubby and I are so proud!

One Day More

One day more and AEP is over! I’m so ready for it to be done because I’m exhausted. It’s been a very successful AEP for me, but it has been grueling physically and emotionally. My voice is all but gone and my throat is quite sore. Meanwhile, my shoulders are a bit looser, but they’re still a disaster. Nonetheless, I tried to get up regularly today and stretch my neck and shoulders.

I’m looking forward to life getting back to normal starting Wednesday. I may even have a social life again. Okay, that was a bit far fetched. However, I would argue that living at the rink is a sort of social life. Thursday Goalielocks has his senior pictures, but afterwards I’m going to start my holiday baking.

While waiting for my calls to come in, I was perusing social media. I will never understand some people. Who the fuck are you that you are entitled to anything? Do people honestly feel that they should be hired without following the normal process? And why lash out at people that are trying to help you. And just fyi your life experiences no matter how poor will never legitimize your poor behavior. I shall now step off my soap box because one more day and AEP is over.

Shoulders Suck

I don’t know about you, but my shoulders suck these days. Perhaps it’s because I carry all my stress in my neck and shoulders. Or maybe it’s the sitting in a desk chair for twelve hours plus daily over the last seven weeks. Whatever it is, it’s not working for me.

After work, I did a yoga practice that targeted the shoulders and neck, which should help. I won’t probably see any real benefits from it until tomorrow. Who knew at level 41 stress and sleeping wrong could cause so many issues in the shoulders? Apparently, being a side sleeper for the last 41 year hasn’t helped my current situation.

I’ve been alternating heat and ice on the neck and shoulders hoping to relax and take down the inflammation. If I don’t take care of the neck pain, it will grow into a massive tension headache. This would be no fun for the last two days of AEP. That’s right, the finish line is in sight. Two more miles, I mean days, to go before this thing is finished. Woohoo!

Speaking of injuries, the Mayor’s stab wound tolerated the hockey well. Amazingly, he even showered and cleaned the wound after his games. This morning, however, he showed up with a hurt hip. He’s struggling to walk. Hopefully, his hip will recover quickly. I’m off to bed. I need all the energy I can muster for these final AEP days. Anyway, did I mention shoulders suck?

Finish Line

I feel like I’ve been running a marathon and the finish line is in sight. Like any race, AEP has been exhausting and exhilarating mentally and physically. It will be nice not to spend over twelve hours a day talking on the phone for a change. So if I haven’t called lately, I’ll be back to calling friends and family once AEP is done.

When I was running a lot of 5ks, the finish line always led to a final surge. Naturally, I almost always felt like I wanted to throw up immediately afterwards. However, in the hours and day after the benefits were well worth the hard work. Fortunately, this will also be the case with AEP. Starting next week, we’re actually allowed to take off as much time in December as we want, which is amazing.

While I worked all days, the hubby and the younger two headed to Ellenton for games. Of course I had to work on the one weekend both boys played at the same rink on the same day. So lame!! I did, however, watch the first three games on LiveBarn. Instead of watching the fourth game, I’m nervously writing this blog. Goalielocks is net, which as we all know makes me nutty.

The Mayor’s leg has healed sufficiently, so he was able to play today. He looked great. Please keep his teammate in your prayers as he broke his leg in today’s game. Unfortunately, he caught an edge and slammed hard legs first into the boards. It was absolutely gnarly. Thankfully, it wasn’t worse, but spending your night in the ER in Ellenton isn’t a dream come true.

Poetry Friday

“Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate.
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date.
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimmed;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance, or nature’s changing course, untrimmed;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st,
Nor shall death brag thou wand’rest in his shade,
When in eternal lines to Time thou grow’st.
So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.” -William Shakespeare

Almost There

I’m almost there. Four more days of our crazy season and I’ll be done. It’s been fun and productive, but I’m utterly exhausted. I look forward to getting more sleep and seeing people socially again. This year’s AEP has gone much better than last years. It’s a bit easier since it’s my second year and I’m not fighting for a permanent spot.

Today was a pain in the ass. Tech rolled out an update to our CRM. The problem was, however, that the business forgot to include lead delivery to our department and a few others in the requirements. Consequently, we sat twiddling our thumbs this morning until IT fixed the system. This makes me appreciate the amazing partnership we had (the business) with IT and our operations partners during our Salesforce rollout at Kaplan.

Of course, today’s highlight was the phone xcall from Jake. He looked good. His wifi is so spotty that it’s hard to hear him at times. Nonetheless, it’s great to hear his voice and see his face. Thankfully, he continues to look and sound great, which eases this mama’s mind. I’m sure going to miss having him home for Christmas this year. Hopefully, he’ll be able to come home next Christmas.

The puppies continue to be the best sales assistants a gal can find. Although poor Athena’s belly has been rumbling all day. The diet dog food does a number on her guy. She is, however, losing weight which is super important. Anakin was trying to convince me to share my breaded chicken with him tonight. Honestly, it was quite cute even if he was being annoying. The Mayor made dinner for us tonight, which was super helpful. Meanwhile, I’m almost there; to the end of AEP!

Scary Moment

It was a scary moment Sunday when the Mayor took a skate blade to the thigh. The Mayor played in the annual Thanksgiving tournament last weekend. Unfortunately, the schedule was such that I had to watch every game from home while I worked. Thankfully, the Ice Den has Livebarn now, so I could watch the game. Additionally, my hubby was keeping me updated via text.

While watching Sunday’s semi-final against the Fury, the Hubby texted me that he was taking the Mayor to get stitches. This was definitely a scary moment for me as I had no idea how or where he was hurt. Unfortunately, he was kicked in the thigh with a skate. The resulting wound looked like a stab wound and was 3 cm long.

The medic at the rink tended to him once they realized the severity of his injury on the bench. Unsurprisingly, he was trying to convince the medic that he should be able to go out and finish the game. Mind you he still finished his shift after taking a skate to the thigh. Once the report was filed, my hubby took him to get stitches.

While it was a scary moment for all of us, it could have been much worse. The skate blade narrowly missed his femoral artery, which makes me shudder to think about. If the artery had been cut, the injury would have been catastrophic. Needless to say, we’re investing in compression gear to protect against the skate blades. In the end, he got five stitches and can’t skate for a week.

The referees did not call penalty on the headshot or the kick to the thigh despite USA Hockey’s commitment to player safety. The Livebarn video of the incident wasn’t great due to where it happened on the rink. Our manager requested the security video from the rink, but the director told her that was impossible. Again, so much for a commitment to player safety. Thank God there’s no delayed offsides or icing on PK’s anymore. USA Hockey is out of touch and useless.

Kindness

So I wrote about struggles last night and choosing kindness. I thought I’d share an example of kindness we witnessed on Thanksgiving. This year, like every other year, we headed to my brother’s in Boca for Thanksgiving dinner. This time it would be our family, Richard and his wife along with a Richard’s dad and his partner.

Shortly after we got there, I noticed an individual I didn’t recognize. I thought perhaps he came with Richard’s dad and his partner. This young man was non-verbal autistic and was plugging his ears due to the noise. He walked around the island looking at the food. Suddenly, he put his hands into the brownie tray and grabbed a handful of brownies and ate them.

After he finished the brownies, he moved on to the chips and dip. At this point, several of us are horrified that whoever’s he’s with isn’t stopping him from eating potato chips and French onion dip directly from the container with a spoon. Eventually, my brother and sister-in-law figured it out. It was there new neighbor’s son, who is non-verbal.

My brother walked over to his house to talk to his parents. Their only response to my brother was that they had told him not to go inside the house. Obviously, this didn’t stop him from entering the house. My brother came back into the house to escort him out. However, before Jon walked the surprise visitor back to his house, he put the dip and bowl of chips on a plate for him to take home.

While my brother and his wife could have raised hell over their neighbor walking in and helping himself to their food on Thanksgiving, they didn’t. They chose to treat him with kindness and dignity. Unfortunately, his parents don’t supervise him very well. This story could have easily had a different ending. After all, this is Florida where people shoot first and ask questions later.

Struggle

The holidays are an awesome time, but for many folks it can be a struggle. Our Thanksgiving was awesome. We had a great time celebrating with our family in Florida, but there was an emptiness there. It’s our second Thanksgiving with Jake not at the table and it doesn’t get easier. We did get a special call from him, which did ease the pain somewhat. Nevertheless, I miss him.

The FaceTime was a lot of fun. He got to talk to my Grandma, who he is really close to, my uncle, my parents and of course my brothers and their families. It was really special for him to be able to talk with my Grandma. She was so delighted to be able to chat with him. Honestly, it was the perfect Thanksgiving surprise.

I took some time off from blogging last week because I’m emotionally, physically and mentally exhausted. So much so that I slept most of Thanksgiving. I fell asleep at my brother’s after dinner and was in bed by 8:30 pm. Staying awake was definitely a struggle for me on Thanksgiving. Sometimes it’s just best to rest and take a break than stress write a blog.

AEP will be over in little more than a week and then I will spend December recuperating. My company is giving us the option to take as much time off in December as we want, which is awesome. Except for the fact, it’s a sales job and to make money, you have to be present. I’ll be taking some time off, but I intend to maximize my time in the office.

Anyway, this holiday season choose kindness. There are so many people dealing with unseen challenges one couldn’t imagine, be nice. Be the person that brings someone else up. It’s free to be nice, so give the gift of kindness this holiday season. Your kindness may make all the difference for someone who is struggling this season.

Made It

We made it to the weekend. Thank God. Except nothing really changes for me since I’m working. The Mayor has two games today and the Goalielocks has two tomorrow. Tomorrow will be the first time I can see his team place since Labor Day. It will be nice to spend a day with the family even if it’s in Orlando.

The week has been an ass kicker for several reasons, but work has gone well which is awesome sauce. That’s about the only thing that has gone well. As always, the highlight of my week is Jake’s call home. He looks good and sounds good. I can’t wait to visit him once busy season is done.

This morning’s drive to Dunkin is was sponsored by Carrie Underwood.