Wednesday, June 23, 2010

iPhone 4....A review

Okay....I have been dying, literally DYING, waiting for this phone to come I may be just a tad biased. I'm not sure. But I do know one thing- I am BLOWN away. People have asked me "what the big deal is" and even called me names like "FREAK" (how rude! and yes, I know you are reading this and laughing Ms. AFFEI) because I have been so excited about this phone...but the excitement is totally justified....I promise. :-)

I have only been up and running for about an hour...but out of the box, the impression of the phone is: 1) Sleek and 2) Thin and 3) Decidedly Apple iPhone. I don't know how to explain that last one- it is just true.

Activation was SUPER easy- if you run into any problems, just re-start your computer and start with a fresh session of iTunes- it took less than 2 minutes, literally. Then the syncing takes a while longer depending on the amount of data you have before you start. Mine didn't take that long since I was upgrading from the older, 3G version that only held 8 gigs. Troy's took even less time because he has like nothing on his phone. While it is syncing, you can immediately notice a difference in the screen- it is like looking at crystal clear glass with amazing HD color. It is beautiful. I promise.

I turned on my wi-fi after I got it up and running (total time was less than 30 minutes I think) and I cannot even explain how fast the wi-fi is running. Like crazy fast. Like "I can't believe it really just did that thing that fast" fast. Crazy fast, I promise. Things are zipping right along, downloading at the speed of light, posting pictures and comments so fast, you double check to make sure you really did's that fast. Significant improvement from my 3G phone.

FaceTime is an interesting little situation. WAY cool- and super easy to use- but WHOA- I was shocked to see my "end of day, worn out, been sitting in court all day and then walked across downtown to the parking lot in 100 degree heat to my car, and already washed off my make-up, face" staring back at me in High Definition when I hit the button to initiate the FaceTime call. I immediately said, "Oh HELL NO! Make it STOP!" It isn't for the faint of heart, that's for sure. Some of you blog readers who are impossibly cute and don't look a day over TWELVE even at our current age won't have a problem with this feature nor will the person on the other end of the line. People who have been working at CPS for 11 1/2 years and are aging by the second instead of the make-up (lots of make-up) before using FaceTime. Helpful tip number #104.

The screen that I alluded to in the activation/syncing stage is really beautiful. Everything is fluid, clear, bright, colorful....the screen is gorgeous. The apps look gorgeous. Texting is prettier. It is truly a beautiful beautiful beautiful screen. Troy referred to it as 3D when he first saw it because it really seems like the icons are standing out, floating on the screen. I have never seen a phone (or electronic/techno device) with a screen like this. It's crazy pretty. :-) Everything runs seamlessly, smoothly, etc. Like I said, it's crazy pretty!

The battery life we have all heard so much about and speculated as to its' merits....well, I have only been live now for (well, probably 2 hours now since I keep getting distracted writing this post) and the battery is still almost completely fully charged. I have taken about 10 phone calls, played 15-20 turns on WWF, organized all of my apps into folders, downloaded a few new apps, posted on FB, checked my email, taken video, and a few pictures. So, I'm loving the battery life right now (I'll keep an eye on this one though). For reference, I am on wi-fi, not 3G, at the moment.

I haven't tried out multi-tasking yet and I know a lot of apps are still trying to catch up to make it actually functional with the new phones and/or new OS. I gave up navigation in my car when I turned in the Lincoln for my Ford Fusion and I am thinking buying one of the apps sold on iTunes instead of getting a Tom-Tom or Garmin is going to be the way to go...especially with multi-tasking.

This last little tid-bit is applicable not only to the iPhone 4 but also to anyone who got the upgrade to iOS 4 as well. The making of folders for your apps is AWESOME. I have heard lots of people are complaining already because you can only put 12 apps in each folder....but it worked out fine for me and I am LOVING that all of my apps are now on one page (the home screen) instead of on 7 different pages.

If you are still on the fence about deciding whether or not to upgrade...I say, DO IT! You won't regret it! And the price isn't going down any time soon....they offered this one at a great price for the new edition to the iPhone line-up.

Happy texting (in HD!!!)! :-)

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Hello out there...

And here I come, crawling back again. Well, you can say one thing, I am consistent.

I wanted to take a moment and thank everyone who left comments on my last post. Some of you commented here, some emailed, texted, called, facebooked, etc., it was the largest response I have ever received to a blog post. Lots of people shared it with friends or loved ones who have suffered similar situations and they shared with others, etc., and people I didn't even know reached out to me to offer compassion and empathy or sympathy and shared their own stories of their heart-wrenching journeys. Some people really get freaked out about sharing information online, blogging, Facebook, etc., but I know for me, it has restored connections I would have never been able to maintain otherwise and that I have found sources of strength and been put on prayer lists I would have never been on otherwise. For that, I am SO extraordinarily blessed, lucky, fortunate, and grateful!

I went back to work on Tuesday, 5/25. It was one of the scariest things I have ever had to do. I didn't know what to expect, how I was going to feel, how I was going to make it through. Didn't know how people were going to react to me (angry because I had been gone? scared to ask me what happened? happy to see me? staring because I gained back 15 lbs dammit? supportive? Missed me?) and I really just didn't want to do it. I begged Troy. Literally BEGGED him to let me stay at home. He told me I would be driving him crazy within a month wanting to go back and to stop kidding myself. Whatever! So everything I worried and thought about was true, people did all of those things but overwhelmingly- the support and reception I received was SO positive. I know how hard my job is and having someone out makes it that much more difficult so I am empathetic to those who are frustrated by my extended absence. Unfortunately, for all involved, there isn't a thing I can do about it so I decided about 30 days ago to stop apologizing for it and let the chips fall where they may. And I am not positive people were actually staring at my once again way too big rear-end. But they probably were. It is humongous.

I have a new boss- and most people know I ADORED my previous boss and she is actually a dear friend of mine- so I was anxious and worried about the transition and wondering if I would like her or hate her or if she was going to micro-manage me and on and on. I had nothing to worry about- she is awesome. I really do love her and love working for her. Now, I have the best of both worlds- I have an awesome boss during work hours- and then I have my amazing friend who is no longer my boss so we don't have to always worry about work! Plus, now I can complain about my boss to my friend and not be griping about HER. LOL! It's great! Going back hasn't been NEARLY as difficult as I feared though I have had a couple of rough days and I do have to come home and rest for a little bit towards the end of the day...but all in all, it has gone better than I could have hoped for. My favorite quote, my life motto, "I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me", has never served me better. For without Him, I am not sure where I would be right now.

I have an announcement to make, and it isn't an easy one. I wanted to make it here before I do it on Facebook. It has been hinted at and people have asked questions but I haven't been ready to discuss it with very many people yet. The last few weeks were rough. I am not going to lie, I wasn't sure I was going to make it through. Without God and Troy- I wouldn't have. I am smart enough to know that is true. There were days I wouldn't get out of bed. Wouldn't shower. Wouldn't eat. Okay. That last one is a lie. But I thought about not eating. It never quite worked out that way. But back to the reality of the situation. There were times I was so hysterical, I was crying so hard, I was throwing up. Laying on the bathroom floor and refusing to get up. Troy would bring me a pillow and a blanket and just sit there with me. We have been down this road before- after my ruptured tubal pregnancy in 1999- he didn't think he would ever "get me back". I went someplace far, far away and retreated within myself until I no longer knew who I was. Thank God Troy has stuck it out with me. Both then and now he has reminded me that having each other is all that ever mattered. That we were obviously put here, together, for a different, yet unknown reason, and that we have to stick together and be strong, and have faith, and trust in God. In HIS plan. Not ours. That there is something else we were put together to accomplish. That our love is so strong and so great- there is something we are meant to do together that requires both of us and doesn't include naturally born, biological children. For whatever reason. Only God knows, we may never. Sometimes, I will be honest, none of that has been easy. I get angry. I say WHY ME. Yep. I sure do. I know it is a selfish question. There have been times I didn't care.

I say all of this to let everyone know how we have been doing and what has been going on. People get annoyed when we don't show up for events. Or don't feel like having company. Or being company. Or talking on the phone. Or getting out of bed. But this is our journey. And we will travel it together in our own way. We stopped making excuses and apologies a while back. We decided it was no longer necessary and that we don't owe anyone an explanation for what we are feeling. It took me a looooooong time to understand- I am entitled to feel however I want for as long as I want and deal with my grief and my pain in my own way. I don't have to be "okay" just because it is easier for everyone else around me. I don't have to "get over it" just because other people want me to so they don't have to think about it anymore. It was a very freeing moment when I finally "got it" and surprisingly enough, once I did....I started feeling a little bit better! It gave me back a sense of control and "peace" over my life that was sorely lacking while everything I was living spiraled so far out of control, I didn't know what end was up or which was down. I won't say I am 100%. But I'm better than I have been in a very, very long time.

So. The announcement is that, after meeting with my doctor, my spine doctor, and two infertility specialists, we have made the decision to have a hysterectomy. The surgery is scheduled for August 3rd. I still wake up almost every day and wonder if I am making the right decision. And sometimes I think I am going to change my mind. But, I'm not. It's not only the right choice- it truly is the only choice. If you will please keep praying for us. For both of us because it isn't easy for Troy either and he doesn't have the same level of support and people he can talk to daily or let him have a nervous breakdown and cry like a hysterical chimpanzee on their shoulder. I don't know what a hysterical chimp cries like actually. But it sounded like a good comparison to the drama I have been known to spew out in fits of rage, anger, desperation, grief, sadness, loneliness, emptiness, brokenness, etc., etc., etc., so I threw it in there. But anyway, back on track, we need all the prayers and love and support we can get to get through this. I was going to try and go back to work in 3 weeks after the surgery (just because I felt guilty about leaving again) and we decided that was a BAD PLAN and I am taking the full six weeks to recover and be able to grieve the way I need to- however that may be at the time and give us time together to pray, and cry, and pray some more, and maybe even laugh together, before we move on to the next stage of our lives.

We are considering having a surrogate carry a child for us...but it is expensive. We will be saving $$$ for a very long time to make that happen. But I am having my eggs frozen just in case we decide that is what we want.

Otherwise, my vision right now is retiring in 18 years, when I turn 50 and am first eligible, and building a house on the lake with a swimming pool and hot tub, buying a couple more dogs and maybe a horse and just living our lives together. Traveling a lot. Having fun and enjoying what God DID and WILL bless us with. Doesn't sound too shabby when I think about it. If I could just get rid of this wrenching pain in my gut and hole and ACHE in my heart- I could probably even get excited about it.