Monthly Archives: November 2012

Back To Work

Even though I’m not feeling a ton better (still a lot of pain in my right side), I have a lot to get done at work and it’s my late night, so back I go.

I’m really not sure what’s up with my side. Yesterday the doctor gave me a VERY thorough examination and said it could be:

1. Kidney/Urinary Tract infection

2. Ovarian cyst

3. Appendix

4. Muscle pain

So basically, she has no idea. I had a blood draw and they tested for a bladder or urinary tract infection and both look good. Now I have to go have a CT Scan. Ugh. I really, really hate this stuff.

Despite my discomfort, I still managed to read a good chunk of a book on web design that I have to read for work and take The Puppy for a 2.5 mile walk. Since it was good and chilly, I made him wear his sweater.

nemosweater

Yes, I’m that kind of dog mommy.

We walked to our local dog park, which was empty, so Nemo got to hog all the balls to himself.

dogpark

All the cool dogs wear their ears inside out.

Then we walked back home and he crashed.

puppycrash

The last couple of weeks have been AWFUL for exercise, apart from walking Nemo. The pain in my side has left me with a complete lack of motivation. Every morning I set my alarm with every intention of getting myself up and to the gym, and every morning I just can’t wanna. This is the kind of situation that in the past would have left me really down on myself and I would have done everything possible to convince myself that I don’t belong at the gym if I can’t make myself go EVERY SINGLE DAY. Today, I’m making a commitment to myself to cut myself a break and just look forward to the day I feel well enough to get up and go.

And then I’m going to crush it. Or at least crack it. Or something.

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Cold–But Warming In Puppy Love

So this happened today.

weather11-12-12

Ugh. I knew it was coming and I guess I should just be happy that it came after a really warm weekend that saw me traipsing around the city.

Today, at least, I’m home sick (pain in right side suuuuucks) and my plans include reading a lot and taking The Puppy for a walk. Not too strenuous.

Rewind to yesterday! We took The Puppy on a three mile walk, watched CRIMSON TIDE, and went to see SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE at the Chicago Shakespeare Theater. As it turned out, we woefully underestimated the time it would take us to get to Navy Pier (where the theater is located) and we ended up being ten minutes late for the performance. Fortunately, we were seated not too long after we arrived and actually ended up with BETTER seats than we had originally been assigned. Score!

The performance was absolutely lovely. I’m so glad we ended up going. It was the last performance for this play and you could see the emotion in the actors’ faces as the play came to a close. There really isn’t anything quite like live theater. We’re going to try to get tickets to BOOK OF MORMON next. I’ve been wanting to see this since it debuted in New York and was hoping it would come to Chicago. It’s pricey, though, so we’ll see if the budget allows.

It’s funny how we get kind of locked into a routine and forget that the outside world exists. I don’t want to call it a rut, exactly, because I think that implies discontent. It’s fun being at home, all comfy and being with The Puppy, but I think it’s also good to experience the outside world occasionally. Before we moved to the far northwest side of the city (pre-marriage), I lived in a neighborhood on the north side called Roscoe Village. It was perfect because we could walk almost anywhere we wanted to go and if it was too far to walk, the train was really convenient. Now, we have half a mile walk to the train (not a huge deal, but it’s not a particularly pleasant walk) and our train line doesn’t drop us anywhere near our old stomping grounds. Guess we just have to find new ones!

Recently, The Boy and I purchased a new mattress. I’ve been meaning to write about our experience and how we made our decision for awhile now, so here you go.

We approached the process like any people who research stuff for a living. We did our homework. We looked at data on the different types of mattresses available and the pros and cons with each. As any librarian will tell you, reviews on mattresses are notoriously difficult to find. This website was a huge help. We narrowed our options down to two: memory foam (like Tempur-Pedic) and innerspring. We thought we were leaning towards memory foam, as all of the information we found indicated that it was the best type of mattress for allergy sufferers (I’m WAY allergic to dust mites) and it was supposed to last the longest. We went into the search with an open mind, however, and wanted to test out both memory foam and innerspring to see which felt the best.

Then we took a bike ride around our neighborhood, hitting three major mattress stores. We looked at Back To Bed, American Mattress, and Bedding Experts. We tested several innerspring and memory foam mattresses and finally decided that the one we liked the best, for price and comfort, was the Serta iComfort (don’t you love how everything is iSomething?), but we had a few other brands that we liked as well. We vetoed the Tempur-Pedic ones pretty much right away, because they were the most expensive of the foam mattresses, they never go on sale, they are the same price everywhere (anyone remember Saturn cars?), and nothing we read indicated that they were any better than any of the memory foam mattresses from other brands. We went home to do more research. After looking at reviews of the specific models we liked, we decided on the iComfort Insight.

We figured that as comfortable as we are with online shopping, we should investigate our options with going that route, as we didn’t feel we needed our mattress immediately and could therefore afford to wait a bit for shipping (this seems to be the biggest issue with buying a mattress online) if it meant paying a bit less overall. After looking at what seemed like hundreds of online mattress stores, we settled on US Mattress. There were a few factors that pushed us in this direction. Price was definitely one, although it wasn’t a significant savings. It seems that mattress joints will offer free stuff rather than do a deep discount on mattresses. We ended up paying around $1,000 for the mattress and box spring, which seemed about standard – a bit less than some, a bit more than others. However, we also got free shipping, a free bed frame, and $200 to use on other merchandise from the site, which has everything from sheets to pillows. We both chose a new pillow. I got a Natura Latex Foam pillow that acts like down because the latex is in pellet form. The cover is infused with aloe which they claim is supposed to make your skin soft, but I think it probably just smells good. I’m pretty sure The Boy got a Natura Latex one as well, but his is all one latex piece. Spoiler alert – I LOVE my new pillow. Hard.

To be honest, one of the things that pushed me over the edge with US Mattress is their “About Us” page, which talks about their commitment to social responsibility and specifically their donations to the Michigan Humane Society. What can I say? I get sucked in when companies at least attempt to give back to their communities, especially when it involves animals.

Overall, we were very pleased with the service we received from US Mattress. One negative was how long it actually took to get our mattress delivered. We were banking on two weeks, but it took more like three and a half. You know how sometimes you’re in a restaurant waiting for your food and all of a sudden everyone at the table feels like it’s been too long and your food should have come? That’s how this felt. However, after a couple of emails and phone calls, our delivery day was set and the delivery went pretty smoothly (they were a half hour early, but that’s better than being late, I guess).

As far as the mattress goes, it’s taken The Boy some time getting used to it. It’s definitely a different sleeping experience. There isn’t the “give” that you have with an innerspring and that seemed to give him some trouble in the first couple of weeks, but I can honestly say that I can’t remember having slept this well. With our old mattress, I would routinely wake up with one or both of my arms having gone numb from pressing against a bad coil or from the piping on the edge of the mattress pressing into my arm, and that problem is non-existent now. Also, there is a bit of a “breaking in” period and while the mattress is nowhere near what I would call soft, it definitely doesn’t have the immediate feeling of, “I’m lying down on a soft rock” feel that it initially had. Even when it was at its firmest, though, once my body eased into the memory foam, it felt glorious.

One of my friends said that she had heard of some couples having trouble with, um, “intimacy” on memory foam mattresses and the Sleep Like The Dead website actually has data about this topic. I can happily report that we have had no issue whatsoever in that department. Whew. I will say, however, that if your activities typically involve the need for a lot of bounce, don’t get a memory foam mattress, or resolve to express yourselves in some other part of your home. This is definitely NOT the mattress for you.

And on that somewhat awkward note, my mattress review is concluded. And now on to this….

neil11-12-12

….and snuggling with my little guy.

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Two Months Later….

A lot has definitely been going on. Work has been INSANE. Personal life has been all about trying to recharge the batteries and feel guilty about what a hermit I’ve become. But I did manage to do a few things over the past couple of months:

1. The Boy and I bought a new mattress

2. I went to Monterey, CA & San Francisco (mostly business with a little bit of pleasure)

3. Got a new smart phone

4. Ran the Hot Chocolate 5K here in Chicago (boy, is THAT a story, and one that many other bloggers have been telling)

5. Signed up for my first trail race (5K)

6. Saw Amanda Palmer live at the Metro (SO GOOD)

7. I’ve been going CA-RAZY adding music to my new phone & updating my Super Activated Ass Busting Workout mix (i.e., the music I work out to)

Exercise has been sporadic at best. I’ve managed to run at least 3 times a week for the most part, but this last week, for example, has been a total bust. It seems to take me an inordinate amount of time to reclaim any sort of routine – exercise, diet, laundry – after being gone for a few days. Also, since I got back from Cali I have the weirdest pain in my right side. I thought it was muscular, but it hurts the same no matter how I move and it hasn’t changed in two weeks. I’m going to the doctor tomorrow. I freaking HATE going to the doctor.

In the meantime, The Boy and I are going to the Chicago Shakespeare Theater TONIGHT to see their last performance of SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE!

SundayNParkWGeorge

[source]

Who doesn’t love a little Sondheim?

(seriously, I want to know)

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