Monthly Archives: April 2013

Shout Out! (No. For real. He’s OLD. You have to shout)

Today is my daddy-o’s 57th birthday!! Happy Birthday, Papa! We love you so much!!! (Oh, wait. 57 is old. MAYBE I SHOULD WRITE IN ALL CAPS SO HE CAN SEE THIS). 🙂 Here is a little video of your angels reading the book you gave them at Christmas. (MOM, PLEASE READ THIS OUT LOUD INTO HIS GOOD EAR).

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Max and Ella doin’ animal noises.

This was not Max’s best performance, but you never catch those on tape (you know what I mean?).
Here is at least a little bit of Max and Ella’s antics.

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You got problems, I got baldness…

I would say a subtle fear of any man (or woman) is losing his/her hair (or going gray early; perhaps a little less of the same thing). Well, it is no secret to anyone that for some reason or other I have started to lose my gorgeous hairline. People used to comment how exotic my hair line was in high school and college; people have stopped talking about it recently… I don’t know why. (okay, that last part was totally made up).

Anyways, I am slowly going bald. Let me preface all else I am about to say with the fact that my wife has convinced me that she truly thinks I look great in her eyes; and that is really all that matters to me. But now back to the reality of my baldness. There was a day many years ago when my life was at stake. The reality that I could die once haunted my parents and siblings as we walked through my battle with cancer. If I had been given the choice way back then to either die or live, but living would mean that I would go bald in my early 30’s, I would not have hesitated. I would have said, “Who cares about hair, I just want to live.” BOOM. DESIRE GRANTED!! How quickly and how often do we forget that all of us are living on borrowed time. No one can ensure a crisis may not happen. We all are on borrowed time.

I have said all this to say, imagine if a crisis were to hit your world today. Say your spouse, your child, or your parent were to have a critical accident? Or what if cancer was discovered in your next doctor checkup? What if you woke up after a car accident with both your legs missing, or your spouse missing? Truly put yourself in anyone of those scenarios. In any one of those scenarios would you trade a bald head for healing, life or your legs back? Of course. Who cares about a pretty hairline if you don’t have legs, or you have lost a child, or you are dying with cancer?

I am reminded of one of the greatest country songs of all time (I know some people out there don’t think “country song” and “great” ever belong in the same phrase, but I have a deep love for good country music). Anyways, there is a song by Tim McGraw called “Don’t Take the Girl,” and it will forever rock! Most of you know it and probably love it the same. At the very beginning of the song little Johnny’s world is crushed because his dad is making him take a lame girl fishing with them both. By the end of the song big Johnny is married and about to lose “the same sweet girl” after birthing complications. At the beginning of the song Johnny doesn’t want to take the girl fishing, but by the end of the song Johnny prays that God would take his life and spare hers. In the length of a 4 minutes song Tim McGraw walks us through the very scenario I was reflecting on the other day when I glared at my new gorgeous hairline (click HERE to listen to this brilliant timeless classic). Today I would be tempted to do anything to have my hair back. But there was a day over 20 years ago where I would have gladly traded baldness every day in exchange for life (my parents and siblings would have given way more than just their hair to see my life spared).

So, as I reflect and come to terms with my baldness, I am reminded that as I live on borrowed time, head hair is simply not a top priority. But, I’m not the only one with barsha meshekle (many problems). All of you reading this have problems of your own. Big problems. Way bigger problems than baldness. But, let me just ask you this: Would you gladly embrace the problems that you feel are shaking your world right now and even consider them a treasure in exchange for a crisis passing you by? What if tomorrow brought one of the biggest crises’ the world offers? How much would you be willing to trade for it to pass?

I believe one of the greatest secrets in life is learning to have the right perspective of the “problems” in our lives without needing a crisis to give us perspective.  So, don’t wait for a crisis.  Enjoy the gifts that truly matter right now. Enjoy the borrowed time you have been given. Perhaps many of the problems we are facing (including baldness) are not that bad.

Something to at least think about, huh?

This must be what Jenny is talking about...

This must be what Jenny is talking about…

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This. Just. Happened.

I recognize I went a little crazy on the posts this morning. So forgive me if you feel inundated. But I have to get this story out to the world. It’s a must.

About two months ago I had some dentist work done. I had 3 major cavities filled on my cancer stricken teeth.  What cost about $800 back in the states on one side of my mouth only cost $100 here on the other side of my mouth.

I would go into detail about that first dentist experience, but what just happened today more than sums up how the dentistry industry likes to roll here.  My tooth has been killing me for about a week. So finally at 10:10 am this morning I went to a dentist 4 blocks away. I filled out the equivalent of a visitors card (only name and address and phone number; no insurance, no forms, no signatures required), I told him my meshekle (problems) with my teeth, he took a few quick x-rays, then said I needed a root canal on one tooth. In literally the same breath he told me the needle in his hand was the anesthesia. When a dentist here finds a root canal, he don’t wait. Why would he? The patient is in pain. There are no dumb malpractice insurance fears. The dentist has all the latest technology. So, let’s do this.

In less than an hour of arriving at the dentist I left with a root canal done and a bill of less than $75 USD. I promise you. This. Just. Happened.

(PS- if you are ever coming for a visit and need dental work, I would say wait and have it done here. And if you need an expensive procedure done, it might be less to come visit us and have it done 4 blocks from our house. Just a thought)

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Tip For Park Cleanups: Show up late!

Jenny’s close friend and language helper, Rhonda, was one of the head people in charge of cleaning up a local park. So like good residence of this wonderful country we went to help. Since Rhonda had a test the morning of the event, we arrived late.  We found out that when you arrive late to a park clean up you end up not having to do anything but party 🙂 That will be a good thing to remember.

Here are some of the pics. It made us feel like we were with our teenagers back in Lexington at Shillito Park (almost).

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Drop the beat… at the park!

If our fitness business doesn’t work out, I’m joining these guys!!

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NAfrican Eminem!

Or if the drummers don’t except me, I will definitely join tour with this guy!

(Check out the guys “USA Original Marine” shirt; too funny)

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Some extra footage of the park!

Here are a few other short videos of all the park action:

Another rapper and dance party: CLICK HERE!

Ella’s remix: CLICK HERE!

Stevie’s remix: CLICK HERE!

Max on the prowl: CLICK HERE!

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The Max Effect!!

There is a direct correlation between Max being healthy and Jenny and I having the energy to do anything other than feed ourselves. Max has been sick with something mysterious. We have delivered two samples of poop to the local clinic and will take two more tomorrow. Our sleep has suffered, the blog has suffered, our studying has suffered, my reading of Kentucky Sports Radio has suffered. We call this the Max Effect.
We have some good stuff coming this week on our blog. Thx for being patient. Hope for Max to deliver a readable poop tomorrow 😉
Poop peace out for now!

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Choof!

“Choof”…. Or “look” in Arabic!
This is my texting conversation with my tutor….

Who out there likes word games??? You would love learning Arabic!
I know a good teacher!

( my words are in green)

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