June 26, 2006

All Smiles

Man, it is hotter than heck. It's supposed to be 89 degrees and sunny today and our condo is turning into the sweltering hot-box that it becomes in the summer. There are certainly advantages to a 3rd floor condo - we didn't have to use our heat last winter - but during the summer it gets pretty warm, even with the fan going.

Sam slept a lot yesterday and I think it was partly because it was so warm. Eventually we peeled ourselves off the sofa and went out to dinner at Ruby's - it was nice to be in the air conditioning. Sam actually slept during the night last night. He went to sleep before midnight and slept (only waking up to eat) until 7. He was awake from 7-9 then went back to sleep again for a while. It was really good, if he could be on this kind of schedule every day that would be nice. Maybe someday...

He is smiling all the time now. I just love it when he smiles at me. I could sit there and look at him all day long. Yesterday he had a little milestone - he smiled at being tickled for the first time! A lot of the time he's still not sure about it, but every once in a while, he does like it. Well, we're off to Tacoma to visit Kira for a little bit. More soon!
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June 24, 2006

First Bath with No Tears

Well, Sam is 7.5 weeks old and usually cries like a maniac when we give him a bath. The last few times he's been okay when we put him in the baby tub and he's just laying on the hammock thing in the water, but as soon as we pull out the washcloth and start washing him, he starts to cry and turns beet red. This time we put him in the bath, and no crying at all! We kept waiting for it to come but he just had his big blue eyes open and kicked his feet like usual and didn't cry even when we took him out into the cold air to put him in his towel! Woo hoo! It was great. Now he's dressed and his hair's cute and fluffy and he's lying on his Baby Einstein play gym and swinging his hand at the little plastic card with a pig on it.
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June 21, 2006

Welcome to Seattle - Aunt Becky is Here!

We are very excited today to have guests here at our house! Aunt Becky arrived from Atlanta this afternoon, and she and Mom are staying here until Thursday, we're going to head down to Tacoma on Thursday to enjoy the Tacoma Farmers Market. Sam is getting tons of love and cuddles. Sam is doing really great. He's "talking" a lot more - he coos more and just makes little noises. He's still eating tons, and growing quickly out of his newborn sized clothes. He's discovered his tongue and loves just sticking it in and out of his mouth, which is quite adorable. We are still just loving spending time with him, and really looking forward to the new things that come every day with him!Here's what's been going on the last few days...

Last Friday I took Sam up to Mt. Vernon to Mom's school to let her show Sam off to some of her students and co-workers. It was their last day of school and they were having a barbeque. Luckily the weather even stayed nice enough to be outside, and there were LOTS of really yummy desserts.

Saturday we made it to the Fremont Fair, and I even managed to catch part of the parade. Traffic was a little bit of a nightmare on the way there because 520 was closed AND there was a Mariners game! It took me more than twice as long as normal to get to Fremont, and by the time I got there the parade was about to start so the traffic was all crazy. I missed the beginning of the parade so didn't see too many naked people! Ha. I did get to see a good part of it, and then Mom, Keith, Kira, Sam and I got some food (mmm... Funnel Cake!) and looked at some of the booths. I also got a pretty good workout pushing Sam's stroller back up the hill to where I'd parked the car. We headed up to Bellingham to spend the night and had a father's day dinner with Justin's dad and his neice Crystal.

We stayed the night Saturday at Rob and Susan's, which was really nice. We got up and made a big breakfast and enjoyed bacon, eggs and really yummy blueberry pancakes. It was a really nice way to spend Justin's first fathers day. I'm really excited - it's probably less than a month before they'll induce Susan and we'll get to meet Maggie! We spent most of the day there, then in the late afternoon went and hung out with Mom for a while. Check out the photo album to see what she got Justin for father's day. Adorable!

We came home Sunday night and on Monday I went to the eye doctor to get an exam and look into getting contacts again. I've been wearing my glasses for about 10 months now and I'm finally ready to get rid of them again. I'll be getting soft lenses this time. They had me try some on and I was really surprised at the difference! I could barely feel them and it was so quick and easy to get used to them - not at all like the hard lenses I used to wear. I also found out my prescription for my left eye is a lot different - because I discontinued the hard lenses, my eye went back to it's natural shape, and I was really surprised by how much correction I needed even with my glasses on! So, I think that I'll be really happy when I get the contacts.

Oh, on a final note - we finally got our dishwasher here and installed yesterday. It's wonderful and a lot quieter than our old one. Yay!
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June 15, 2006

Yes, We Are Still Here!

Sorry it's been so long between updates again. I haven't had much time to be online in the last week. My e-mails are way behind too. Of course, with Justin's trip last week I didn't get time then, and it seems like I've been busier. I think things are picking up for a couple of weeks - with the trip last week and plans most days this week, and Aunt Becky coming to visit next week I feel like I don't have much "free time" for a while. Hopefully the first couple of weeks in July will be calmer so that I can get some down time before Dad, Helene, and Lianna come to visit.

Sam is still doing great. He's been on soy formula for a little over a week now, and it's working out really well. He's not constipated anymore, so he hasn't been very fussy at all. It also seems to make him spit up a little less - of course he still does, but it is not every time he eats, and yesterday he didn't spit up all day long! It's a little bit more expensive since we can't get it at Costco, but of course it's worth it for him to feel better! He's asleep in his swing right now after being up for 3 hours in the middle of the night last night and then again this morning for a couple of hours. Last night he slept for six hours straight, which is somewhat insane. I'm looking forward to the day when that's the norm. But, I really feel like we haven't had it too bad with his sleeping habits. There are better nights and worse nights, but for the most part we usually get in at least a couple of stretches of 3.5 to 5 hours in the night sometime. He's such a good little baby.

Justin left for Phoenix last Wednesday morning and came back on Saturday night. Wednesday I did get out of the house with Sam - we went to Tara's for lunch with Brooke, Kelly and all the kids. Then I went shopping for a little bit and found the cutest little Hawaiian shirt for Sam to wear to Phil's Luau next weekend. I'm really excited to see it on him! Sam slept really well that night, which was great since I was so nervous about being on my own for four days. On Thursday we just hung around the house and cuddled and 'played' together. At this point, playing with Sam basically consists of holding him when he's awake, talking to him, listening to him coo, and maybe shaking a rattle sometimes. It's still lots of fun for me though! Friday we went and saw "Cars" at the mommy movies with Brooke, Dave, Lorelai & Seamus. It was pretty good. Afterwards we all met up with Tara and had lunch at Ruby's in Redmond.

Friday night, Brooke and I had planned to go to the Hall & Oates concert at the Paramount. With Justin out of town, it posed a problem for me since I had to find someone to stay with Sam while I went out. I called my Mom and Kira, but they both weren't really available. Luckily for me, Renee, who I used to work with at Raising More Money, had offered to babysit for us anytime. She is super sweet and also has tons of experience and used to be a nanny. So I e-mailed her, and luckily she was available! I guess this is a milestone - at 5 weeks, Sam had his first babysitter. I didn't feel nervous or have much anxiety about leaving him behind. Maybe because I pretty much spend 24/7 with him, but also because I totally trust Renee, so I wasn't at all worried about leaving him with her. So, Brooke came over at 7:25 to pick me up. The concert started at 8:00 and we figured that would be enough time to get there. Well, we didn't account for there being some kind of horrible, bizarre traffic problem on 520, so we didn't get to Seattle until 9:00. ARGH! Since we didn't have tickets yet, and we would have been 1:15 late by the time we got inside, we decided to ditch the concert. So we decided to drive back to Bellevue and have dinner at Maggiano's Little Italy in Lincoln Square. It was actually very good - we tried the artichoke spinach dip, Ravioli with Pesto Alfredo, and this really yummy apple dessert. We had a good time despite our plans being totally changed, and I decided that I want to go out for fun meals with friends more often and decided to start taking the initiative to arrange 'girls night' meals out with some of my friends from around here every once in a while!

On Saturday Mom came over and Kira came over, we hung out and then took Sam to Kirkland and went for a walk in the sunny weather and then ate at Jalisco's Mexican Restaurant. We had a good time - I always do when I get to spend time with them. Mom and Keith spent the night and I went and picked up Justin from the airport that evening. On Sunday, Mom went to visit Kira in Tacoma, and Justin and I slept in (thanks to Sam sleeping well), and then we headed out to Best Buy to deal with the dishwasher fiasco (more on that in a minute). Sunday night Keith made DELICIOUS spaghetti sauce with italian sausage (love it), then we watched Full Metal Jacket. To be more accurate, Sam, Mom and I watched Full Metal Jacket in the living room while Keith and Justin cooked. Okay, so they were making beef jerky in the kitchen, but it was still a funny thing for them to be in there while my mom and I watched a war movie in the next room. Justin got a food dehydrator for his birthday, and beef jerky has sort of become his new hobby. It's fun and delicious.

Tuesday I had my 6 week postpartum doctor visit, which went well, then I went and got my hair cut. When I got home, Justin and I took my car to the car wash to clean and vaccum it. It was desperately in need of cleaning since I haven't been driving it much lately and somehow it was very dirty from sitting inside the car port here at the apartments. I would think that would keep it from getting dirty, but if I thought that then I'd be wrong. Tara stopped by that morning to lend us an extra car seat base, so now I have one in my car too so I can drive my own car when I go out with Sam. She had Nate with her, and he seemed fascinated by the cats. He's really a cutie and so smiley every time I see him!

Yesterday Sam and I went down to Olympia so that he could meet Brie and I could visit with her. She's been on bed rest recently because of a blood clot in her leg, and Kyle is working during the days now so it worked out well and hopefully made her day less boring! She is doing all right - she is not working right now but is looking for another job. She's about 10 weeks along in her pregnancy now, and she has much worse morning sickness than I did. She has anti-nausea medication from her doctor, but still seems to be getting sick several times most days. Yuck. That is no fun. I am keeping my fingers crossed for her that it will let up once she hits the second trimester. I am looking forward to what's to come - her baby shower etc! It's really kind of fun to watch one of my good friends go through the whole process now that I've been through it myself. On our way back we stopped at Babies R Us and got some more of the pacifiers that Sam likes since we only had 2, and some MORE burp cloths and a couple of other things.

I think today is going to be another lazy day - we don't have plans to do anything. Which means I have time to write about the great dishwasher fiasco that's going on right now. The bottom line is that we have been WITHOUT A DISHWASHER for a week now. Well, that's not completely true, we have a dishwasher, but it's not hooked up. I'm really glad that I went and bought those extra bottles when I did, because I've been washing them by hand and Sam goes through them pretty fast! So, you may be wondering what happened to make our dishwasher not be hooked up? Well, it's a long story, so buckle down...

Friday, 6/2:
Went to Best Buy and bought a new dishwasher. We scheduled to have it delivered and installed the following Wednesday. It was a little bit of a bummer we had to wait, but we were really excited about getting it to our house and having a new one since our old one has been a little bit on it's last legs and has been making funny scary noises every time we ran it lately. Now that we're using it to wash and sterilize the bottles, we've been running it a lot more often. They told us that someone would call us on Tuesday to set up the exact time for the delivery.

Tuesday 6/6:
By 6:00 no one had called us to schedule anything, so Justin calls Best Buy to find out why and what is happening. He is subsequently put on hold for an hour, and finally hangs up and calls back. At some point after 7:30 we talk to the installer and switch the delivery to Thursday instead of Wednesday. We are told that someone will call us the next day to schedule the exact time.

Wednesday 6/7:
At 7:00 no one has called us to schedule anything. I call Justin, who is now in Phoenix, and he tells me to wait a few minutes. At 7:30, they finally call him to schedule it and they tell him that they will be here to install the dishwasher between 2 and 4 PM on Thursday afternoon.

Thursday 6/8:
At 10:00 AM the front gate calls my phone. I let the person in because I figure it's the diaper guy since that's his usually delivery time. About 10 seconds later Justin calls me and tells me that the dishwasher people just called him and they are ON THEIR WAY. As in, they were on the highway when they called him. I quickly get off the phone. I still have a load of clean dishes to be unloaded from the old dishwasher, and have not cleaned out under the kitchen sink so they can access things, since I THOUGHT I had until 2 PM to do it. I jump out of bed and the phone rings again. It's the front gate. I actually talk to the person this time, and it's the diaper guy. I quickly plunk Sam down in his swing, manage to unload the dishwasher and partly clean out under the sink, then there's a knock on the door. I open it, and the 2 installers and the diaper guy are all out there. I put the diapers aside and let the dishwasher guys in. I apologize for not being ready, and explain that we were told they'd be here later in the afternoon, to which they act oblivious and don't really respond. They take out the old dishwasher and take it away down to their truck. They take the new one in the kitchen and start to install it. Then they open the door and notice that it's BENT. That's right, it is damaged. It came out of the box that way. So, we call Best Buy. They said they'll just have to get another one from the warehouse and have the installers come and put that one in. They say that it won't be able to happen today, but possibly Friday or Saturday or Monday at the latest. I am frustrated, but it's not TOO big a deal at this point. They leave the new dishwasher at my house, and I'm left with no dishwasher. They tell me they'll call me about the next delivery. Later that day someone contacts Justin and says there is another one at the warehouse and they're going to hold it.

Friday 6/9:
Someone contacts us again and tells us that the one at the warehouse is no longer available and that we will not be able to get a new dishwasher until the NEXT Friday. We are unhappy. The installer calls Justin and tells him that they are going to bring our old dishwasher back and hook it up so that we will have a working dishwasher until the new one can be installed. They tell him this will probably be on Saturday and that they will call us. We never hear from them again.

Sunday 6/11:
Justin and I head over to the Best Buy in Bellevue and visit Customer Service. We explain the situation. No working dishwasher, lots of being told people will call us and not calling us, our old dishwasher taken away, having to wait forever. We go back to appliances and it turns out that they have one of the model we bought in their backstock in the store. We go back to customer service and decide they will exchange the one we bought for the one in the store and the installers can bring it. They tell us we won't be able to have it delivered until Wednesday. Then their computers are down. They tell us they can't do the exchange until Monday when they're back up, which will push the delivery back until at least Thursday. We ask to have the delivery fee we paid ($50) refunded since the delivery hasn't actually been completed. The guy says there is nothing he can do. We ask to speak to a manager. A manager comes. We explain the situation again. Finally it hits him that the installers TOOK our original dishwasher, leaving the damaged one at our house for some reason. He suddenly realizes that this is messed up and actually tells us that they should not have done that, they should have left ours and took the new one back. They refund us the $50 for the delivery. They tell us that they'll process the exchange on Monday and call us about the delivery. This is a much abridged version of what happened. We were in the store for over an hour.

Monday 6/12:
No one calls us.

Tuesday 6/13:
I call the store. I talk to someone there named Josh in appliances. He tells me that they processed the exchange and the delivery and installation is scheduled for Friday. I tell him that this doesn't work for us unless they can do it early in the morning because we're not going to be around. He says that they call the night before and we won't know until Thursday. I ask if he can please see if they can do it on Thursday since it's been over a week and I just want to get it taken care of. He says he will call the installers and see what he can do and call me back.

Wednesday 6/14:
At 5 PM I still have not heard anything. I call Best Buy again. The girl at the customer service desk knows my name without me telling her. It's like all I have to do is mention the word dishwasher and they know. I talk to a manager. He finds Josh. He has not been able to reach the installers, but it's pretty obvious to me they will not be coming at Thursday. Josh calls Justin a couple of hours later, and still has not been able to reach the installers.

Today 6/15:
As of right now, we have not talked to anyone else. Supposedly the installers will call tonight to set up a time for tomorrow. Unfortunately, this doesn't really work for us unless they can come in the morning between 8 and 10. Since they have not been flexible up to now, I doubt that. I am thinking it's going to get pushed back to next Monday, which is really annoying.

I have to say that this is not one of the more impressive customer service experiences that I've ever had. There is not much that is more annoying to me than people saying they're going to do things then not doing them. Like telling us they'll call us, then not doing it, which has happened multiple times. It's also ridiculous and annoying the amount of effort it takes for the people in the store to communicate with the installers. It shouldn't be that hard to get in touch with them. Beyond any of that, I don't feel like I should have to be the one to keep calling them. They should keep me updated on what's going on, even if they don't have the information that I want. The whole things is pretty irritating, and it makes me think twice about buying any more appliances from them in the future. I guess I'll just have to wait and see what happens next to find out how this is going to resolve...

Okay, since this is now officially about the length of a novel, I'm going to go now. Sam is hungry anyway, so I better go and feed him! I will update again soon.
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June 6, 2006

Monster Baby!

We went to the pediatrician today for Sam's one month checkup. He weighs 9 lb 6 oz! That's right, he has gained about three pounds since his last appointment four weeks ago. That's 50% of his body weight! I guess I should have known with the monster amount he's been eating, but I just didn't realize. He's now 21.5 inches long (gained .5 inch) and his head is 14.5 inches in circumfrence. He is in the 50th percentile for weight now, but his head actually is still lower than the 50th percentile. Everything else is good, he is healthy and happy. He had to have his 2nd Hep B shot today. He cried like a maniac for about 2 seconds during the shot, then pouted, then he was fine. Speaking of the pout, I got a pretty good picture of it which I'll post in the photo album just after I finish this entry. It's very cute.

On the way home from the pediatrician, we stopped at the chiropractor for Justin to get adjusted, and we set up Sam as a new patient. Yes, that's right, our 5 week old baby got a chiropractic adjustment today. A year ago, I would have thought this was an insane thing to do. But then one day I was waiting for Justin in the waiting room there and picked up "Chicken Soup for the Chiropractor's Soul". Don't ask me why, the Chicken Soup books are ridiculously "heartwarming" and I am not usually interested. But there wasn't much else to read. There were all of these stories in there about babies and children being helped by Chiropractic when no other doctors could help or when they were having serious health issues that couldn't be figured out or treated. So I started to think about it. Sam has been constipated for much of the last 4 weeks. We've had to use suppositories to help him along several times because after going only 1.5 or 2 days without pooping he starts to get fussy. So I started to think that maybe the chiropractor could help him. We are also going to switch him after this container is gone to a soy based formula instead of a cows milk based one to see if that helps. Some babies can't tolerate cows milk very well until they are older - I believe my Mom said my sister was like that. In any case, I did a little more looking on the internet and decided to take the baby to Justin's chiropractor. It makes sense in many ways - babies spines grow so much during the first year, it makes sense to have someone track it just to make sure that everything is developing well. He adjusted him - if you are imagining the jumping around, squeezing and cracking that you may have experienced if you've been, don't worry, it wasn't like that! It was very gentle, he just felt all around his spine and neck and hips and then used the activator to do a gentle adjustment. He said he'd guess Sam will go to the bathroom on his own tonight or tomorrow morning. If he's right, I'll definitely be a believer!

If you haven't checked in in a while, I wrote a long entry yesterday about what we've been up to for the last week, and this entry may start up a new page - so if you're curious, make sure to go back to the previous page and read about our adventures as well as what Sam's been up to and what kinds of new tricks he's been doing.
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June 5, 2006

Can you believe it's beena whole month?

Sam is one month old already! Can you believe it? I hardly can either. He is definitely looking more like a pudgy cheeked baby now and not an infant anymore. He's still in newborn sized clothes, but they actually fit him now and I think soon he'll be fitting much better into some of his 0-3 month sized clothes. I haven't posted in a while, so here's an update on what's been going on for the past week, and with Sam!

On Monday, we headed up to Bellingham for a Memorial Day BBQ at Justin's Dad's place. It was fun to hang out with all of Justin's nieces and nephews, and Sam got to meet lots of family members he hadn't met before. We got an excersaucer from Scott & Michelle, which is great, and I'm sure Sam will be using it before we know it. After the BBQ we stopped and visited and let Sam meet Marshall & Katie, some friends of Justin's who are getting married in just under a month! Then we headed over to Mom & Keith's to hang out for the night and stayed overnight. It was Sam's first night away from home, and he did great. He is also still enjoying his infant seat and falls asleep almost every time we go anywhere in the car.

Tuesday we headed home fairly early in the morning so Justin could get some work done. That evening Kira came to visit us and get in some quality Aunt time with Sam. It was great to see her. She's been busy with the start of the season for the Tacoma Farmer's Market, which she manages, and we are really looking forward to going down with Sam when the weather is nicer (maybe this week!).

Wednesday I went and saw Mission Impossible 3 and took Sam with me. There were only 2 other people in the theater, so I was not worried. Sam did great and slept most of the time, although he woke up and cried a couple of times towards the end, but he was just hungry. I fed him and he went right back to sleep. After the movie I wasn't quite ready to come home, so I headed over to Borders since there was a new Jeffrey Deaver book I wanted. I ended up with a stack of books, and I got to visit with Andrea, who I used to work with at the Bellevue store when I worked at Borders. It was fun to show off Sam to one of my old co-workers, and got a few good books which she recommended to me. Andrea is the queen of SciFi/Romance/Mystery and always has great recommendations!

Since we've had Sam, we've had to run our dishwasher almost every day to keep all the bottles and dishes clean. It is pretty run down and has been falling out of the wall a little bit, now it's making scary noises when it starts up that make me wonder every time that we run it if it's going to be the last time. So, we went to Best Buy on Friday and bought a new dishwasher. It's going to be delivered on Wednesday, and we're looking forward to not worrying about that anymore. While we were there, we both drooled over the washers and dryers and refridgerators, but we decided that we should wait until we move to get a new fridge, and with the size of our apartment we can't fit a washer or dryer bigger than what we have now.

Saturday I got to have some much needed time by myself. I went out to the fabric store and to the movies with Brooke. We discovered a Landmark Theater by her house that has independant and 2nd run movies for only $3! We checked it out and it was nice. We went and saw Kinky Boots. It was really good, just like Kira said after she saw it, funny and heartwarming, and a really interesting story.

Sunday I took Sam to book club and he slept almost the entire time! It was crazy. We got to see Macaela again, she is very cute and her hair is the prettiest shade of auburn. She and her sister are going to be such a cute pair of girls. I'm looking forward to seeing more of them now that I am more used to having Sam around and feel like I'm able to get out to join the other moms for play dates and things that happen in the mornings.

Only 16 days until Aunt Becky is in town visiting - we are so excited to see her, and I'm very excited for her to meet Sam.

Sam is being very good right now about letting us get some rest. For the last week or so he's been sleeping usually from midnight or so until between 9 and noon, just waking up to eat and for diaper changes. He gets fussy every once in a while and wants to be held, but usually I can go back to sleep with him cuddled up on top of me. It's great to be able to actually get some sleep and Justin and I have been doing pretty well with trading off so we both get several hours in a row. Usually I go to bed around 12 or 1 and Justin takes care of Sam during the night, then I take over covering his feedings etc sometime in the morning around 7 or so and Justin gets some sleep. He's eating a lot, and definitely looking like a baby now instead of a newborn. He's got little pudgy cheeks, and his eyes are big and wide. We have a doctor appointment tomorrow, so we'll get to see how much weight he's gained.

Sam has also started to respond to his first toy. I noticed that a lot of the rattling toys we had you have to shake them pretty hard or quickly to get them to make noise, so when I tried to show them to Sam he couldn't really focus on them since I had to shake them so much to get his attention. We went to the store and got another rattle that has a plastic ball that spins so I can shake it or spin it to make noise, and Sam will actually look at it and stare and stop what he's doing. It's such a little thing, but so exciting. He's starting to smile more at random times, and I can't wait for the day he looks at me and smiles and I can tell he's actually smiling at me. He's also cooing more, which is so cute and exciting for us. I love just spending time with him when he's awake - he's so alert. Every day I'm glad that I decided to stay home with Sam instead of going back to work. At this point he's not even doing that much, and he's only awake for a quarter of the day most of the time, but I would hate to miss any of it!

Justin may be going out of town for the first time since Sam was born. People he work with want him to come to Phoneix for some training for two or three days, and it's possible he'll go as soon as this Wednesday. I feel both prepared and unprepared at the same time. I know that I can take care of Sam by myself, and I can get out of the house and get to Brooke and Dave's whenever I want to. Mostly I'm worried about just being so tired because I'll have to get up with Sam every single time he's up. It's amazing how eight hours of sleep is less restful when you have to get up three times for a half hour or whatever. It will be hard to spend that much time with the baby without any breaks, so I'm sure that I'll need a little bit of a break when Justin gets back. In any case, it'll certainly be an adventure, and we'll see how it goes.

Well, I think this has gotten long enough, and I'm going to go and snooze for a couple of minutes while Sam is napping right now. I will try to post more often, it seemed like this week was particularly busy for some reason, but I'm not sure why. I'll be back soon with more stories of Sam!
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