Saturday, August 30, 2008


As I have been having my LinkedIn war with Mike (he even asked his ex-wife to link to him to try to beat me), I have seen lots of names that I haven't seen in a long time. By the way, if you are reading this and aren't linked to me, please send me a request so I can be sure to beat Mike. He is resorting to all kinds of unethical invites. :) So, as I have seen so many of these names, it has made me think a lot about leadership. Travis and I have talked about it a lot over the years, and he has added many good points to my thoughts on the subject.

I have always felt that leadership and knowledge are what make a company/department/product great. One of the problems I always felt at Misys after Misys bought it was that the leaders weren't experts in what they did. I believe that you should not have to train your boss. Your boss should always be able to teach you something. You may teach your boss and your boss teaches you, but it should not be a one way street. This is why coaches get paid the big bucks, right? The idea that one person can motivate, lead, direct, etc a group of people better than another. As I have received LinkedIn invitations, I have thought about it a lot and wondered about leadership. It is interesting to watch people go from one company to the next in search of something. I think a lot of what they are searching is leadership.

Thankfully, Gustav wasn't as bad as feared for New Orleans and Mississippi. However, good leadership got people out in time in a way that worked smoothly. I was amazed to watch the evacuation and how much better it went this time. Of course, some of this was due to fear, but I think the leadership was also there with issuing the evacuation and not having a shelter of last resort.

I think what is really needed in healthcare, including healthcare IT, is strong leadership. I have been involved in some work on labs lately, and it reminds me of how crazy healthcare really is. We have just been discussing one little tiny part of healthcare, but the complexities require tremendous leadership by mainly volunteers to the cause.

One more topic on leadership, my Vols lost against UCLA, and I am sure some of my fellow Vol fans will be calling for Fulmer to be fired. As much as I was in a state of depression today after waiting for eight months to watch my Vols play football again and then watching them lose, I was also proud of the team and the coaches. I remember many teams that would have given up along the way or wouldn't have quite had it in them to rally so many times. This team kept going and going and going. You know, there is a reason that most major college teams play "pansy" teams at home for the first game. It is a strategy. Tennessee has picked a different one for many years now where they play a typically strong team (or at least not a pansy) sometimes away and sometimes at home. Regardless, the first game is usually pretty difficult. I have always admired this and been proud that my team was brave enough to do that. I am not sure it is the smartest strategy (especially after losing in CA two years in a row - Cal last year and UCLA this year), but it is brave and non-wimpy. I have a shirt for UT that says "Bring it On" and then has University of Tennessee Football under it. I have always loved it because I think that has been the attitude. It takes great leadership to take a team that is not used to its players, with new coaches, new players, new stadiums, hostile crowds and not only deal with mistakes that will happen but motivate them to keep giving it their all. I saw that in my Vols. No, they didn't win. But, they made me proud to be a Vol. Fulmer, Clawson, Chavis, in my book, you earned points yesterday instead of losing them. You were leaders in my book. Now, next time, can you get some of those things called points a few more times? :)

O Kidney Stone, O Kidney Stone, Go Away Mean Kidney Stone

Here we go again. This week goes down as a painful one as a kidney stone decided to grace my presence. Hopefully, it will go away on its own.

Happy Birthday to Krishan on Friday (whew, thankfully you got married in time to MONA!)

Happy Birthday to Chris on Saturday (have fun at the all boys birthday party at the Ray's Game. I cannot believe that you can get a learner's permit.)

All eyes in Florida have been on the hurricane and tropical storm combo. It looks like it is headed for LA. I went to help after Katrina 3 years ago, and while I certainly don't want the storm to come here, I hope that those people get a break and it goes somewhere else. That trip made a lifetime impression on me. I need to dig through the slideshow we did on the two trips. We had two trucks and an RV (the JW, the Big Banana, and the Roman Candle were the names of the vehicles for the walkie talkies). I seriously hope that this storm falls apart or at least weakens greatly. Hopefully, that Hanna storm won't do anything bad either. I read this quote on Dr. Jeff Masters' blog (thanks Mark McCune for sharing the link) and it seems pretty appropriate.

Time to leave New Orleans (from Dr. Jeff Masters' Blog)
I've been criticized by some for recommending people evacuate New Orleans, since that's not my job, and for saying "it's not natural" to live in a city that lies partially below sea level. I apologize for my remarks, they could have been phrased better. We had to build New Orleans where it is, and it is a great city that needs to be protected. The fact remains that New Orleans is highly vulnerable to storms like Gustav. Gustav is capable of bringing a storm surge to the city that will overwhelm the levees. Pre-Katrina wisdom suggested that the city needed 72 hours to evacuate. With the population about half of the pre-Katrina population, that lead time is about 60 hours. With Gustav likely to bring tropical storm force winds to the city by Monday afternoon, that means it's time to leave. I'm not an emergency manager, but I am a hurricane scientist. I understand the danger this storm poses better than most. The risk of staying in New Orleans is unacceptable. This is a huge and dangerous storm that has already killed a lot of people. The projected track and strength of Gustav is very close to that of Hurricane Betsy of 1965, the Category 3 hurricane that overwhelmed New Orleans' levees, and killed 76 people. It's time to get out of New Orleans.

Other than kidney stones and storms, it is finally football season!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Of course, I totally didn't realize that the Tennessee game is on MONDAY at 8. I assumed it was on SATURDAY at 8. DUH.... I have to say that it was SO nice to wake up and have college gameday on. WOO HOO! Mike's BYU team is playing Iowa so that should be interesting work conversation on Tuesday (almost everyone at the the Iowa office seems to be an Iowa or Iowa State fan but the Tampa group represents the ACC, SEC, Big (little) 10, and many others (even TEMPLE). :)

Family football roll call
South Carolina already won
Go Mississippi State
Go Georgia
Go Auburn
and of course, GO VOLS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

LinkedIn, Fun Songs, and Arm Sensitivity

Mike is on a race to try to get more contacts than me in Linked In. So, of course, that gets my competitive nature going. He is also getting all kinds of recommendations. If you are reading this and are not in my Linked In, please send me a request. Also, Mike and I have been having a discussion on what happens when you get a divorce and you are linked to someone. Do you "unlink" yourself from that person? I don't think I would unlink, but I was talking to others who would. Interesting dilemma that technology can bring. :)

I have several songs that I have been listening to a lot - courtesy of Morgan and her friends.

1. Shake It by Metro Station
2. I kissed a Girl by Kate Perry
3. When I Grow Up by the Pussycat Dolls
4. Hands in the Ayer by Flo-rida
5. Hot N Cold by Kate Perry

I love Pandora radio (thanks Histalk). Click here to listen.
None of these are my "typical" music, but they are pretty fun songs.

One more thing, is your upper arm sensitive? Krishan keeps messing with me by poking me in the arm by my shoulder. For some reason, this hurts. He thinks it is hysterical, but the QA girls and I think it is "work abuse." What do you think? :)

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Birthday Party (Double Digits!!!)

I got home around 9pm, and Morgan's birthday party started at 11:30am the next day. Nothing like no down time. :) We got up and of course had to go buy birthday presents for the other two girls who Morgan had the part with. Three girls on her team all have birthdays within a week of each other, so they had a combined party. They had an ice skating and laser tag party. They had a great time. Uncle Mark even ice skated. I was shocked and ultra-impressed. He did really well, and he didn't even fall. Not even once. :) I knew better than to put on ice skates. :) Mike, Mark, Chris, Michael, Travis, and Tal played Laser tag and had a blast. :)

Morgan ended up with a few girls spending the night, and we were planning to go on the boat on Sunday. That stupid storm Fay churned up the water and created pockets of storms, so we decided not to go. Instead the girls just played and had a great time.

We did a scavenger hunt in the neighborhoold (she did this last year too), and they had so much fun. I couldn't believe that both teams got a 1998 penny (the year Morgan was born). The neighbors were all seeming to enjoy the hunt. :) They have been saying that they want to go to You Do the Dishes, a ceramics painting place, but they have been having so much fun that they haven't been motivated to go.

I can't believe my baby is 10 years old. It seems so odd. What a thrill it is to have kids. With all the good, bad, and everything in the middle, I am so happy to have her. She is truly a blessing. I can't believe the girl who thought she couldn't have kids ended up with a wonderful daughter and three fantastic step-kids. Happy Birthday Mo Mo!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Friday, August 22, 2008

Cleveland Trip

I went to Cleveland on Thursday, and I was on United Airlines this time. United has "economy plus" seating for a small fee (around $20 - 30). If you don't pick the economy plus seats, you are in the back of the plane and sandwiched in. The economy plus seats seemed to have a pretty big difference in space. I will have to remember that.

I flew to Dullas first and then I was on a small plane to Cleveland. The gates were very confusing, and there were several flights all going out of the same place. So, I asked if Cleveland was boarding yet. He said no. I sat down and about 10 minutes later (after hearing not a peep about Cleveland), I hear last call for Cleveland. Hmmm...So, they act like it is a big hurry but there are 5 or 6 other people in the same boat as I am. So, we walk down the stairs (could they make these flights any less convenient?) and we get in line. Call it a gut feeling or something but I decided to ask if this was the Cleveland flight. The man says, no, this is Jacksonville. AHHHHHH....they rush me and the 5 people behind me off to another place. Whew. I am glad I asked.

I landed before Travis, and he is flying in on a private plane into a different airport. So, I head to the hotel and get some work done. I leave at 5:45 to get him as he is supposed to land at 6:30 and it says that it is about 30 minutes. At 6:50, I arrive. It was an awful drive. First, my handly navigator in my phone took my directly through the middle of the projects. The airport was in downtown Cleveland. I was a little nervous at several of the lights, and I was very happy to get out of there. I did get to see a nice view of the water in downtown Cleveland for a few minutes. I had to drive through several "star" intersections that had very poor signs. I am not sure which is worse - star intersections or traffic circles. Then, they had this odd marginal road that you had to take almost in a big circle around and over the interstate. I was sooooo happp to finally make it. Then, I made sure to plug in "prefer highway" into the Navigator to avoid the bad areas. We had a pretty uneventful trip except that my phone died which meant my navigator died. We made it ok though. We finally got to the hotel around 7:45.

We had a nice dinner at an Italian place called Giovanni's. It was very good. I had Veal Parmigiana. I had to laugh about people ordering that in Knoxville when I worked at Olive Garden in college. They would ask for it as Chicken or Veal Parm e g anna. Hee hee...

The business part of the trip was good, and the flight home was ok. While I was waiting in Cleveland (I had 3 hours before my flight), I made some new friends. They had just gotten off of a Southwest flight that had trouble with pressurization system on the plane and had to land in Cleveland. These new friends went immediately to the bar as any good traveler should. They cracked me up saying that the wanted the pilot to keep going - what was some pain? They also said that the flight attendant made a joke that the way Southwest keeps its fares low is by flying you halfway to your destination. Hee Hee. I did have a scare in Cleveland as they said the spark plugs were broken.

On the flight from Dulles to Tampa, I met a very cool chick. You know how sometimes you meet strangers who help you make sense of your life without even meaning to? That is kind of what it was like. I was struggling with a situation, and I was pretty upset. Next thing I know, I sit down and start talking to this person who like very much like my best friend in high school. I ask her if she lives in Tampa, and she says no but her stuff is there right now. Thinking that is an odd answer, I asked more. She had worked in a job that she liked but she was tired of and wanted a change. So, she and her significant other did an around the world trip over a 7 month time period. She said they mainly wanted to unwind a relax. They didn't plan a lot, and they didn't necessarily do a lot. They did visit some friends and they did some sightseeing. We chatted the whole flight, and I asked how long she would be in Tampa. She said she didn't know. Her answers were so shocking to me that they really made me think. She said she even saw me walking on the plane looking stressed with the phone to my ear and thought about the fact that she really wasn't ready to be that connected again. Not that I could ever just take 7 months and travel around the world, but I was very intrigued by what she said. Not just what she said but her attitude was interesting. She inspired me, but I am not exactly sure on what. :) I do know that my stress level dropped about 100% after being on the plane. V ery odd but nice. I also know that I have just added something to my have to do before I die list. I want to do an around the world trip. :) Maybe not 7 months, but I want to do it. :)

Thanks Salem wherever you are and wherever you end up. Your spirit helped me. :)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Storm of the Century - NOT

If you watched the news, you would have thought that Tampa wouldn't be standing by now. Thankfully, they were wrong. Tropical storm Fay completely went around Tampa. It is very interesting to look at the map of where it went and it is almost like it intentionally went out of its way to avoid Tampa. We were closed on Tuesday at the office, and Morgan was out of school. Even though I think both had to happen as the storm was unpredictable, it is this type of event that makes people not treat other storms seriously.

Monday, August 18, 2008

First Day of School

The first day of school was covered with speculation. Will Tropical storm/hurricane Fay hit Tampa? Will schools close on Tuesday? Morgan was so excited about school being cancelled, and it hadn't even started yet. :)

Morgan showed her pre-teen self by obsessing over her outfit. I am SO not ready for all of that.

We already knew her class, and she already had her school supplies. I took her to school that day and let her ride the bus home. She seemed so grown up getting her stuff ready. When she got home, school was already cancelled for Tuesday, and my office was also closed. Morgan was thrilled.

No homework on the first day, but they did give a list of new supplies to buy. I wish they would put ALL of the supplies on the list instead of one list and then another. It drives me CRAZY. In NC, the schools didn't have supply lists. I liked that better. :)

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Weekend Fun

Mike's new saying is that we put the FUN in dysfunctional. I think it fits our family pretty well. :) We had a good weekend. Morgan's friend Emily turned 10 on Friday, and we went to dinner at Olive Garden and then we went bowling to celebrate. I hadn't been real bowling in a while. I bowled a 101. Hee Hee. Emily spent the night Friday night, and we didn't get home until after midnight.

We got up early on Saturday and went on the boat. Of course, as we pull into the marina, Mike's ex-wife calls and asks if we can get the boys because she is taking Katie to a concert. We went on the boat for a while, and we had a good time. There were some thunderstorms in the area (pockets) and the girls were a little nervous even though they are a long way away. It turned into bright blue sky though, and we had fun.
We did see all of these birds swarming around someting. We tried to see what they were swarming, but the water was pretty shallow. It was kind of creepy. They were just hovering and circling and diving down. I was going to make some analogies, but I might get into trouble. :)
We left the marina and went to get the kids. We weren't sure about the weather, so we talked about movies, bowling, skating, and busch gardens. We finally decided on Busch Gardens. We arrived at 5 pm. I knew that we had litle chance of doing much on a Saturday the weekend before school starts. So, we bought the new Quick Queue pass. Let me just say that Quick queue+ Platinum Pass = Busch Gardens Nirvana. We did the following in less than 4 hours.

2 times on Montu
Rhino Rally
Phoenix (boys rode)
2 times on Kumba
Congo River Rapids
Log Flume
Tidal wave (girls rode twice)
Three times on Shiekra

That is pretty amazing in a little under 4 hours. I love the Quick Queue (well except when others have it and I don't). We got home late again, and we had fun playing in the car. I really like the song "I kissed a girl" as I like the tune (it is catchy) and I think it has funny lyrics. Mike is not so keen on it. We had a blast singing in the car, and Chris and Michael were dancing in sync in the back. Mike went in to get pizza hut on the way home (no time to eat when on ride mania). The kids were making the van bounce with their dancing. I was cracking up. What a great day!

Sunday, we got ready for school. Morgan is excited even though she acts like she isn't. She got new shoes today, and I am shocked that she won't be wearing the crocs tomorrow. We are keeping an eye on tropical storm Fay, but she is still by Cuba so we don't know how the projected path will change or how strong she will be.

Friday, August 15, 2008

iMedica and Misys

I have had several requests for info about the iMedica and Misys situation. Of course, I don't have any information other than what has been made public (unless someone wants to give me some :) ). I will say that I am not that surprised that there is trouble in paradise. I think the expectations of Misys were unrealistic when you are licensing another company's software. I also think it was pretty silly to directly compete against each other. I would think iMedica would be happy to sell copies regardless of who actually sold them as long as the service component was done correctly. According to the interview on HIStalk, it appeared that they were directly competing against each other "tooth and nail." I would imagine that the interview was not very well liked at Miys. It certainly didn't paint Misys in a very good light.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Sales Meeting and Trip to Texas

Monday was a day of meetings all day. I spent some time getting ready for my demo on Wed. We are in the beginning of a release, so it is pretty exciting. I love the beginning of the cycle. Julie came to town for a meeting, and I got to see her new laptop privacy/sunlight shield. She can sit on the deck and still see her screen. That's HOT

Tuesday, I participated in the sales meeting. It was so fun. The sales reps all did a demo of Clinician, and I got to critique them. It was fun to see the similarities and differences. They all did a great job, and I was actually very happy to see showing off the application. As the afternoon went on, I was watching the clock on the laptop I was using. I never even thought that it might be on a different time zone. OOPS...All of the sudden, I realized that I was almost an hour late leaving for the airport. Thankfully, traffic was minimal, and I got there with a few minute to spare. After landing in Houston, my flight to San Antonio was delayed. Of course. Figures. It is all Travis' fault. Whenever I travel with him, our flight is late. He was coming from Nebraska to Houston and then was on the same flight to San Antonio. We wait, and we wait, and we wait. I did get an Aunt Annies Pretzel though. I love those. The At Home kit is great too. Anyway, we get on the plane and we land about an hour later. As we wait at baggage claim, we hear the announcement that around 50 0f the bags didn't make the flight. UGHHHHH...of course, mine is one. Travis' bag actually made it, but mine didn't. The lady making the annoying announcement says that the bags will arrive in about 20 minutes. RIGGHHHHTT...sure they will. They said they could deliver them, but since I needed to be ready at 8:30 am and it was already 12:45, we waited. Of course, the bags don't come off until 1:45. Love it. NOT...

We get my bag and rush to find the Thrifty bus (never have used Thrifty until my last two trips). I think Thrifty is good for non-business travel, but I am pretty sure that other car rental companies are better for business travel. I vote for corporate accunts to get good rates. We get on the bus to take us far away to get the car. We wait, we wait, we wait, and we finally get in the car. My phone's navigator takes us to the hotel (thank God for Spring Navigator). We get into the hotel and I climb in bed at 4:30 EDT (3:30 Central but my body was definitely on Eastern). We meet in the lobby at 8:30. I was not exactly bright-eyed, but I survived the demo. It went well. We couldn't get a flight out that late in the afternoon, so we had to spend the night. Our flight was at 5:45 am. I got up at 3:30am after staying up addicted to the men's gymnastics. The American's didn't win nor did I get much sleep. Bummer.

The flight home was uneventful, and I rushed straight from the airport to the sales meeting to wrap it up. It was really great to spend some time with them, and I think it will help them and the company. It is hard to replace time spent dedicated to learning and sharing information.

That night, Morgan ended up spending the night with her friend Emily, so I went to meet the sales crew at Chli's. We had a great time, and then we went to Primetime to watch the women's olympics on the big screen. Poor phone was in my purse, and he had previously said he didn't want to come to Chili's. I guess he changed his mind, but I didn't hear my phone any of times it rang. He finally just drove down there. He was in fun Mike mode, so he was telling lots of stories. :) Too bad Shawn Johnson didn't win. I was pulling for her. I am happy that an American won th0ugh. Lukin was having an amazing night. USA, USA, USA!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Camping Trip - Ginnie Springs

We left on Friday morning to go camping at Ginnie Springs (north of Gainsville). We have been there several times over the last 2 years, and we love it there. The campsites are pretty large and all have at least one picnic table, a fire pit, and a grill. We like to get near a spring so that you can jump in the water whenever you want to cool off. We typically go near the Dogwood spring because it is a more family friendly area. Cars cannot be driven by Dogwood, so it is calmer and quieter with the kids. The downside is that you have to carry all of your stuff to the campsite (with 4 kids and 2 adults, we have a lot of stuff!). Mike and I tend to have different opinions on camping stuff. I am all about simple. I don't want to do a lot of work setting up, cooking, cleaning etc. Mike likes to have more comfort, better food, real dishes, etc. Last year, he even made brownies in a dutch oven. So, this time, he was nice and he let us go in the simplest setup. We used cots to sleep on (no blowing up mattresses), easy to make meals (cereal, sandwiches, hobo dinners and hot dogs), paper plates (no cleaning), etc. We had smores three times (the very best part of camping).

After lugging all of the stuff to the campsite, we put up the tents and the "food prep" tent. Unfortunately, the screen didn't fit our food prep tent, so it didn't have a screen. We survived though even though Michael grunted and moaned that the bug spray didn't work on him every 5 minutes. We had Morgan's friend Victoria with us, and she did great. It is so nice to have her friends along when they like to do active things and aren't worried about getting dirty or whatever.

After setting up camp, we went into the freezing cold spring. :) It is 72 degrees all year round. CHILLY but refreshing. The kids love to swim over the "pit of death" othrwise known as a spring. Morgan used to be terrified of it, but this year she dove down in it. We had sandwiches and then floated down the river. The girls were on their flower power floats, and they had a great time standing on them, spinning them, etc. Michael got into the grass, and he was freaking out. Chris just wanted to get away from all of us. :) We learned to get in at the Devil's spring instead of at the beginning to avoid going through thick grass. We built a fire and had hobo dinners that night. Then we had smores. YUMMMMMMMYYYY. I had forgotten how good they are. I am pretty sure that heaven is just sitting around a campfire eating smores. Pretty sure.

We had a brotherly sisterly spat on Friday night, but the kids made up on Saturday. It reminded me that blending families is an ongoing process and that you have to take extra care to help all of the kids feel loved and included. I think you especially need to remember that another adult who is not so fond of me or Mike is in the background saying all kinds of bad things about us. I f0rget that sometimes. Poor kids. They have to try to sift through it all. I am thankful that Morgan doesn't have to go back and forth.

Saturday, my chair broke. I had used it since college. I was sad. It was my tailgate, horse race, camping, ballgame, beach, etc chair for about 16 years. I loved it because it had a foot rest. I needed to go out of camp to a store so I decided to look for a chair while I was there. Can you believe that they had a chair that was similar to it for $10. WOO HOO!!!! Michael came with me to the store, and it was nice to spend some time talking to him without other kids around.

At one point, a girl was so drunk coming out of the spring that her boyfriend was trying to carry her out. He wasn't exactly sober either. She had been puking for a while apparently, and she wasn't alert at all. We tried to get her to open her eyes,but she wasn't reacting at all except to puke. He kept saying that she was just "a little drunk" and that she would be ok. Oh to be young again and think that being unconscious and puking is just "a little drunk."

We went down the river twice. We started at the Devil springs this time, and it was nice without the grass. We also swam in Ginnie Spring twice. Chris hurt his ear by clearing it after going down deep into the spring. Poor thing, it was huring pretty badly. Thank God for Advil.

We had hot dogs and smores for dinner. I have decided that smores are another food group. LOVE THEM. We hung out at the fire for a while before going to bed. It was a fun night.

On Sunday, we packed up and went into the spring. The kids didn't want to go down the river, so we just swam, packed, and relaxed. Michael wanted to stay and go to Ginnie again, and I had told Victoria's mom that we would leave around 3 (as Mike had mentioned). At 3:45, they were just going to Ginnie. Mike says he will see us in Tampa. Wow...I was surprised that he didn't want to drive at the same time. Whatever. So, we head back. We drop Victoria off, and then head home. The boys get home later. I help them unload. Then, Mike says he is taking the boys home which is really some secret boys code for we are going to dinner without you apparently. :) It was a fun trip away from our typical busy lives. I am ready to go again. Any takers on a camping trip???

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Campfire is awesome

We are having a great time at Ginnie springs. I love hanging out with the kids with no tv or doors. :)

Sunday, August 3, 2008

House Back to Normal, Instinct Phone

We had a fantastic weekend. It wasn't really that exciting, but Mike's parents moved into their own place. :) I know they are probably as happy as we are to be out of our house and back on their own. It had been a while since I had long-term visitors. No matter who the guest is, it is difficult to have people stay with you for a long period of time. I hope we have some good karma in the bank since we tried to do what was right. :) I will think long and hard before telling someone else they can stay at our house. :)

Mike helped them move out Saturday morning, and then Dana came and took the kids school clothes shopping. Morgan and I got our nails done, and then we went looking for birthday presents. Best Buy was having some sales and seemed to offer most of the items on her possibilities list. :) When we got there, we looked at cameras, and then we looked at the cell phones. We looked at the Samsung Instinct (the one Sprint calls the iPhone killer), and we fell in love. It is awesome. Everything is touch, and it gives feedback by a slight vibration when you touch the keys so you can tell you touched it. It also has a stylus, an extra battery, a case, a 2gb mini-sd card, and headphones/microphone. Sprint started this new program for long-time customers (nice to see a company reward loyalty - I got Sprint's brand new at the time PCS service back in 97) so we got a wonderful deal on two phones! We also changed the plan (it is actually cheaper!) so that we have unlimited texting, sprint tv, radio, email, web access, etc. So far, it has been a huge hit.

We watched the movie True Lies on Saturday night at home (well, Morgan and Michael were playing SIMS). I had forgotten how hysterical that movie is. "Leave the hooker alone." "Harry, will you let me handle this?"

Sunday, we slept in late (yipee!), and then we had breakfast of waffles or biscuits and gravy. Mike also made bacon (someone had the nerve to throw away a piece of bacon and Mike had his feelings hurt. Nobody ever confessed though). When I was leaving to go to the grocery store to get a few things for breakfast, a firetruck, an ambulance, and another fire vehicle arrived to take our next door neighbor away on a stretcher. We aren't sure what happened, but I hope she is ok.

Then we went to Office Depot for Mike to get school supplies for the kids. Thanks to Grams, Morgan and I didn't have to worry about that. Then, Chris wanted to trade in some games at Games Stop to upgrade to a PlayStation 3. We got 80+ games and took them to the store. After lots and lots of barcode scanning, he announces that Chris has 310 bucks to spend. Unfortunately, the PS3 is 500. So, PS3 becomes his birthday present, and we drive to the only other Game Stop in Tampa that HAD a PS3 in stock. Then, we went to Target. (Those of you who know how much I hate to shop are wondering about my sanity of doing all of this with a husband and 4 children). Katie wanted to get a new comforter, sheets, etc. She found one she likes, and I ask to go look at the vaccuums. Mike gets all grumpy, and I am shocked since we have been doing all that he wanted to do all day to this point. So, I got a little snappy. :) I went to the checkout line. Well, Mike decided to be a pain and stand in the vaccuum area. He sent Michael to get us at one point. Morgan and I finally walk back there, and we are fighing in the store when this woman walks by. She says, "honey, I have so been where you are and I feel your pain." I start cracking up, and our fight was over. Gotta love it. :) I did get a cute little Shark vaccuum cleaner for our downstairs.

Mike grilled dinner (hamburgers and hotdogs and salad), and it was great. Mike was the handyman tonight and took apart Morgan's bunk beds. Now, she has a twin and Katie has the other one. They are growing up way too fast. They are all interested in how their rooms look, in clothes, and in the Jonas Brothers (who Katie says will be better than the Beatles one day - hee hee). I simply cannot believe that Morgan will be double-digits, Chris will start driving, Katie is in middle school, Michael and Morgan are in their last year of elementary, etc, etc, etc. Better enjoy the time while it lasts. :)