It's that time of year when we enjoy all the outdoor time we can before we have to lock ourselves inside. We had a cool spring this year. Even now in June we have only had a few 100 degree days, yesterday being the hottest at 108, and it's cloudy today in the 90's with rain coming tonight. They say if we do get some rain tonight it will be the earliest start of monsoon in Phoenix on record. Tomorrow the high isn't supposed to top the mid 80s.
On May 11th, my mom's birthday, I had the Joe Factory shut down. I wasn't one of those guys that only has 3 days of pain and then it's like it never happened. Nope, I had complications and was down for a good two weeks. I almost passed out when waiting for my prescription afterwards and they had to bring me back in and put my feet up because I was turning pale, cold and sweaty, dizzy, and it was even obvious to them that I wasn't OK.
After two weeks of very little activity we had our 2nd annual Memorial Day trip at Lake Pleasant. This time we wouldn't just spend the day there, we all brought our trailers/rvs. It was a on the cool side this year. Last year was 100 degrees and this year it was only 90 the day we were on the water and it was breezy. It was just warm enough to enjoy the water without being miserable. Dean actually did really good on this trip. I was worried because he is a really fussy child but he was quiet all day. I don't know if it was the wind in his face, the noise of the boat engine, or the mist in his face but he was a happy guy all day. It's almost like someone swapped out my baby.
This year I didn't want to rent a tube from the marina because the only ones you can rent are the ones you have to lay on and hold onto handles. There is no way Zach would be able to ride that so I bought a three seater and a knee board. The lake was choppy that day so knee boarding was pretty tough. I couldn't get outside the wake for very long without wiping out from all the chop. After not even 45 minutes we all gave up on the knee board and stuck to the tube. Adri was one of the first on the tube and my dad was not taking it easy on her. She was scared and at one point crying. I thought this was hilarious because the tube last year was a lot scarier and she enjoyed it. After Adri got off the tube I took Zach. Zach didn't want to get on the tube because he was afraid he would sink but once he got on he loved it. There was no crying from Zach. Of course my dad did start out a lot slower with Zach. Zach kept yelling thank you for buying him the tube while we were riding. I told him I bought it just for him.
By the time Adri's second turn came around she was loving it. By the end of the day she was getting tossed in the air and wanted us to go faster. I was the only adult that did not wipe out that day. Probably a good reason for that was the fact that I rode with Zach. The last run I had I got some good air though and told my dad to cut the engine. Zach was having fun but I couldn't take any more.
The following day we decided to just hang out at the lake. We thought we could just drive up to the water like we did a couple days ago but it was way too crowded. After over an hour driving around we decided to park off the highway and walk down to a little cove. I didn't like it all that much but the kids had fun.
After our holiday weekend we spent a week at home before going to California for my sister's gala fundraiser. We left on a Tuesday night, got there just before midnight, and everyone woke up with a nasty cough the next morning. By the end of the week Dean had to go to urgent care and get antibiotics. I managed to make it through the week but I wasn't sleeping because of the ear ache. By Sunday I had lost my voice completely for the first time in my life and I was hacking out stuff like never before. I decided we had to stay another day and called out sick at work. Monday we drove home and Natalie and I had to go to urgent care. We both had infections and had to get antibiotics. I'm still coughing and trying to recover. This is the worst throat infection I have ever had. Somehow Zach and Adri only got mild coughs.
Back to California. I was planning on going to a concert on June 9th in Mesa. I saw my favorite band Insomnium, from Joensuu, Finland, last year and they were coming back doing their Winter's Gate tour. Winter's Gate is a 40 minute long song that covers a few genres of metal, rock, and jazz and they only did bits and pieces of it on the last tour. This time they were headlining and did the whole song. Well my sister had her gala on the June 9th this year so instead of seeing Insomnium in Arizona I saw them on June 8th in Santa Ana with my long time friend Paul. The show was 7 hours long with 9 bands and most of them were horrible. A lot of noise and screaming. Insomnium however was amazing. We got right up to the stage and got to see an hour and a half of Insomnium. My only complaint is that after 40 minutes of Winter's Gate they only had time for another 7 or 8 songs.
The following day was my sister's gala. She managed to book the roof at city hall in Riverside this year. This year she had twice as many people show up as last year and it was a good time. The girl doing the photography was someone I have known since high school yet I didn't recognize her. She has a lot of freckles and had them all covered up with makeup. When they announced her name I had to go back in and say hi to her and that's when she realized who I am. Towards the end of the night my dad's neighbors found me and we were trying to have a conversation and that is when my voice decided it was done.
The next day we recovered, had a birthday party for my niece, had movie night with my sister, then attempted to sleep before driving home early the next morning. I say attempted because I only slept about 2.5 hours. I had this nasty dirt smell in my nose, my ears were burning, I was coughing, etc. Finally I made myself a medicinal cocktail then took a hot shower to clean out my sinuses and fell asleep after 3am.
Now we are back in Arizona waiting for our next adventure. Adri had her 8th birthday this week and we are having her party tomorrow. After that it's all business until vacation.
May 10th was our second triple digit day this year. It was 101 degrees but I decided I had to hike up Daisy Mountain after work since I was going to be down for the rest of the weekend. The first 3 miles sucked until it started to cool down. I did another hike a couple weeks ago starting the trail at 4:30 am. Again even though it was early morning it was hot, not as bad as the previous hike but still hot. I got back to the car that morning before it broke 90.
A couple weeks ago I took Adri out for ice cream.
Adri wanted to watch Epica videos before bed. It kept Dean quiet and Zach passed out.
No gel in that hair. Just wild from the wind.
Deanie checking out my pinwheel hibiscus.
Insomnium at Malone's in Santa Ana. I was confused when the guitarist on the far right looked nothing like the one I saw last year. One of their founding members/guitarist/vocalist, Ville Friman, has a PhD in evolutionary ecology and is busy doing research for the University of York. They had Jami Liimatainen fill in for him last tour. I thought Jami did well on the vocals, kinda reminding me of Alice and Chains. This tour they used ex guitarist from Arch Enemy, Nick Cordle. Great on the guitar but I didn't like him as much on the vocals as Jami. A little too high pitched and sounded a little like Judas Priest.
I had to work on Adri's birthday while Natalie took her to all her favorite places. After dinner she had a cupcake and I crashed out. I was barely able to stay awake for the cupcake.
I went to bed as the sun went down that night. It was a nice sunset with the sun being a very dark orange.
Look who we found again this morning. He startled me pretty good when I saw him.