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Thursday, January 03, 2008

It's been awhile again, huh?

Well, dear readers, if there are any of you left (which I doubt), a lot has happened in the past three months. Don't even bother asking me everything. Here's a brief summary of the highlights.

October continued on pretty well. I told you that I went home right? Of course, I did. Then Halloween came and went. I spent about $25 on Halloween candy, and gave about half of it away. I was as generous as I could be, but there came a point when I decided that I actually did want some of it -- Butterfinger, Mounds, Almond Joy, you get my drift? ;)

November was pretty good. Work was really busy, but I can't remember why. Sometime that month, my gym schedule, which had already slacked off from 6 days a week down to 3 went to 1, if I was lucky. Oh, and my twin sister brought #4 into the world -- Zachary Michael.

Oh, and sometime in either October or November, I decided that I want to take classes in acting and music theory & composition. Over the past couple of months, I've decided that I want to pursue music as a side profession, although I still have the most fun when I'm acting.

Two major work-related things happened in December: #1, I messed up my own data, and it was quite a fire drill over about 30 hours straight to rebuild all of the affected data. #2, the following weekend, we had our company party at the Kennedy Center. It was great -- except that I was really tired (still recovering from the week), so I didn't really get into it until about half-way through.

I didn't go to the gym at all in December. I was too busy with work and Christmas choir practices. But the latter was for naught, because JD and I drive down to Texas to visit our respective families for Christmas, and spent three full days there. I arrived at home in Dallas at 9PM on Sunday, and JD picked me up again at about noon on Thursday. It was a lot of fun, although very short -- I got to visit with Emma and Sarah, Kelly P. went Christmas shopping with me on Monday, and Jenny D. and I went to lunch on Wednesday.

On Christmas Eve, Mom and I went to Our Lady of Lebanon in Lewisville for Liturgy. It was quite nice. Emma and Sarah asked me to join them in the choir loft for a couple hymns, and I was more than happy to oblige. My voice wasn't quite up to the task, though. Quite sad. Be sad. Are you sad? If you are, thank you.

On Christmas Day, Mom and I met with Elizabeth and her four chillun's (yes, the new one is as cute as a button). I was in my morning coat (most normal people would wear it to weddings -- I would wear it to weddings and the birthday of the Savior, and most likely His Resurrection, too). Anyway, we went to Mass together, then Mom and I went to her house where we had breakfast and opened round 1 of presents. Later in the evening, Jane and Gilbert came over with Kathy and the two babies. Then we all opened round 2 of presents.

On Wednesday, Mom and I watched Batman Begins. During the rest of my short stay there, we also watched Yours, Mine, and Ours and Evan Almighty.

Thursday came, and Mom and I went to Mass early in the morning. I was expecting Jonathan around 8AM. He was running a few hours late -- this was good thing. Had he been on time, he would have been driving from about 3AM, plus we would also have to contend with Dallas traffic -- even though we're not in Dallas officially, we are near enough. So he actually showed up about noon and we had smooth sailing out of Dallas, and we were both able to stay awake for a while and talk.

The day I got back to VA, I felt like I was beginning to adjust to the TX weather differences, and my asthma (or whatever it is in my lungs) was beginning to open up a little. So, Jonathan and I drove straight back to VA without stopping, arriving at 6:30-7:00 AM. We got back to his place, and I crashed on the couch until about 10AM, when I drove back to my place. I was cold, tired, and my chest was rather congested, although not too badly. I went to the gym after unpacking. I worked out very hard, considering that I hadn't been to the gym in almost 2 months due to life being very busy, and I exhausted my lungs. My body felt like it could keep going, but my congested lungs were screaming for more space to store oxygen, so I was done.

After my shower, I put on a lot of warm clothes, and drive back to my place. I began shivering while getting dressed and didn't stop until I was more than half-way back to my place. As soon as I got out of the car, I began shivering again, and this didn't stop until about ten minutes after I went inside, put my sweaty clothes into the basket, put on my sweats/PJ's, and crawled into bed. It was about 3:30 PM. About 4:30, Eric W. came back to the townhouse, and chit-chatted with me for a bit, then got recalled to work, so he had to take off. I went back to sleep until about 7:30, when he got back. By this point, I was feeling a lot better, although not 100%. I ate some chicken soup and took some Nyquil, and then Eric and I went to the Chipmunks movie. That was really funny. Plus, the music is AWESOME! I love the Chipmunks. :)

Saturday, about noon, Jonathan came by again, but this time, we were going to the English's house in Lancaster, PA. On the way, we picked up Meghan and Mary Beth at Meghan's house in MD. We were all going up there to sing Christmas carols at a Christmas party that the English's were hosting. We arrived at about 4PM, and began practicing about 4:30. We stopped for dinner at 5:30, then continued again after dinner until about 8PM. I was singing bass for almost everything except for 2 pieces where I sang tenor. After we were done singing, I was freezing, so I got my coat and looked like I was in a cassock for the rest of the evening. My voice was pretty much OK, but I was still quite tired, but I couldn't crash yet. About 10:00 PM, I began fading, but I managed to stay half-awake until 11:30, when I went to bed.

Early the next morning, we went to the church early to practice for Mass. I discovered much to my chagrin that my high voice was 95% gone. The only voice I had left was a scratchy low voice -- and I was supposed to sing tenor all through Mass. Well, Paul helped me as much as he could, but I was practically useless. We sang 3 pieces, and my voice got progressively better (it wet from about 5% at the beginning of Mass to 10% for the final piece), and right after the final piece, I lost it entirely. It wasn't even at 5% -- it was at 0%. I had no voice for the next couple hours, and since then I've been gaining a little bit back every day. Today, I'm almost 100%, but my lungs are still interfering -- when I start to sing in my high range, I feel the very strong urge to break into a coughing fit.

On the way back from the English's, Jonathan, Mary Beth and I were talked into staying for a bit at Meghan's house to participate in a Christmas open house/party. I was happy to stay, but with my voice the way it was, I couldn't really talk to people well until much later in the evening when it was a variation on the low voice of the Preview Guy.

And speaking of coughing fits, I've been having them every night. Usually from 3-4PM, anywhere from 30 minutes to a full hour. Last night, I think I coughed twice -- no fits. It was nice to be able to sleep again. Although, I feel another one coming on now, so I question my ability to sleep tonight. Wish me luck. I'm going to try now...
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