It took a few days of wrangling, but I have the blog software updated. I am very happy with how it turned out. I need to actually walk through every single blog post and make sure the tagging and the preview are correct, but I don't have time to do more than the first page right at the moment. I will try to work through it all in the next few weeks. I hope you like the new look.
As you may possibly have noticed, I have radically updated the look and feel of Shmoolok.com. I hope you like it! My primary motivation was the fact that previously the site did not render well at all on mobile devices. With this new, fully responsive design the site now looks great on any size screen.
For Phase 2 I will be updating the blog software, as well as the look and feel of the blog itself. I don't know how long that will take. I am working with a copy of the website to work through all of the templating, and it may take a while.
Anyway, I hope you like the new look and feel. Drop me a comment and let me know what you think!
So much has happened in the last 48 hours, I don’t even know where to begin. Do I go for shock value and start with Ben and me walking into the emergency room at midnight, both covered in vomit? Do I go for a sweet and comedic tone, with Ben taking a hot bath earlier that evening and demanding to be left alone in the bath with the lights out and a single candle for illumination while listening to Enya? Or do I start with a moment of raw terror, with Ben fighting a 102.5 degree fever and shivering so violently that the entire bed trembled beneath him? The truth is that these last two days are a jumble inside my brain, a nearly incoherent mixture of fear and resolve punctuated by moments of nearly sublime comedy. If you had asked me at any point this weekend where I imagined I would be tonight, the answer “sitting by the fire pit at a theme park resort” would never have even crossed my mind, and yet here I am. Literally nothing makes any sense at this point, so I am doing the only thing I know how to do – write my way through it and try to find some kind of coherent plot. It won’t be an easy task.
I have a post coming this Wednesday about Ben's first ride on the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, but in the meantime here is a video of me performing three songs at an open mike night at Pilars Martini Bar in Winter Garden a couple weeks ago. The first is my acoustic cover of "Wrecking Ball", and then two original songs -- "Western Winds" and "Benjamin's Lullaby (a.k.a. All Is Well)". I hope you like it.
Most of the time on this blog I write about my son, but today I wanted to do something different. What I would like to do instead is answer a question that nobody is actually asking, but has been nagging at me lately anyway. Why in the heck to I play guitar and sing in public? The answer is certainly not “because I think I’m awesome.” I consider my skill as a guitar player to be, at best, an advanced beginner. Vocally I think most of the time I am generally okay, occasionally I am reasonably good, and more frequently than I would like I am a train wreck. As for my stage presence and general abilities as a live performer, I am pretty much a rank amateur. So why in the heck do I do it?
I suppose you could argue that last Thursday's final surgery marked the end of the eight-month ordeal of Ben's illness, but for me it was Monday morning that truly signified a return to normalcy. As of this week, Benjamin has returned to school full-time and his mother has returned to work full-time.
For just this weekend, my book 3500: An Autistic Boy's Ten-Year Romance with Snow White is on sale for $0.99 for all digital editions. You can find the Kindle version here on Amazon.com, and all other digital editions here on Smashwords.com.
As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words:
Today was a milestone day in Ben's recovery from his abdominal surgery. This morning he returned to school for the first time since his surgery on January 31st. He was very happy to be there, and everyone was thrilled to see him. Overall he had a good day, but as expected he ran out of steam before the day was over. He returns to school with several significant limitations: no lifting anything heavier than his lunchbox, no PE or other strenuous tasks, and of course no tickling or poking at his belly. The plan at this point is for him to continue going to school each day and to stay as long as he is physically able without overextending himself. We expect that it will be half days for a while, but for him to improve day by day. There are two and a half weeks left before Spring Break, and ideally he should be back up to speed and attending normal full days by March 31st.