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Lapping It Up

I got the money from the prize at work and have now (drum roll, please!) ordered a Brand. New. Laptop!

New MachineWoohoo!

I waffled for a while over how much I wanted to spend and what kind. I knew I wanted Lenovo for a lot of reasons. It’s a business class, a ThinkPad, vs. going with something snazzy looking. It’s only got 4GB of RAM but has the capacity for up to 16GB, so I’m not setting myself up for obsolescence.

Or maybe I am, since I passed on the touchscreen and opted for Win 7 pro pre-installed. I don’t have the slightest desire to jump to Win 8. No thanks. I work in the tech field and have to listen to people – including some who are reasonably tech savvy – wrestle with that monstrosity just to perform simple functions. What a mess. Windows screwed up bigtime.

I did my homework and knew what I could realistically afford to spend. I already had $100 gift card toward the machine, so this wasn’t painful. It was even less painful when I learned that the exact same machine ranged $250-300 more at most outlets. Score! I also hit them on free shipping day AND there’s a $20 rebate. Score again! I ended up ordering a wireless mouse, too, while I was at it. The rebate alone more than paid for the mouse.

I went overboard for Christmas gifts this year, spend more on the kids than I intended. In my defense, each of those was largely needed as well. For Little Guy who lives with us, I went with an educational kids’ tablet. It comes pre-loaded with 20 games and applications, with hundreds more available. It also provides us insurance against him stealing our own machines, which is becoming an issue. We want him to learn and to be comfortable with technology, just not at the expense of the devices we use for work and school! I don’t want to buy a new lappy just for it to hit the floor thanks to a 2.5-year-old. He’s a brilliant child, but still a child.

The system I bought him is kid-centric, and geared for ages 3 through 9. It’s built accordingly, which makes it a better bet against being dropped and abused. I’m hoping it’ll at least take him through for a couple of more years. I also paid a little more for the rechargeable version. It wasn’t worth the $20 difference to buy a battery-operated one that takes 4 AA batteries. You’d eat up $20 in a month, easy.

My oldest son and his wife have been struggling in a huge way. He’s got several serious and life-threatening illnesses going on simultaneously. There is surgery in the offing which should take him out of the life-threatening segment, but he’s going to be qualified for disability. His wife works with me, but their medical expenses have been sucking them dry. So for those grandchildren we’re going the practical route: shoes and underwear, a baby bed for the 18-month-old who’s never had one, all desperately needed. They’ll each get a small toy under the tree, but they get the things they need first.

And if you’ve been following me on Facebook you know that my daughter got called out in the middle of the night Tuesday this week, to collect her son from his daddy’s house. Daddy pushed the wrong buttons with the wrong psycho and got himself shot. He should by rights have been dead because there was a shotgun point-blank against his chest. He literally pushed the barrel just as the guy pulled the trigger, or the shot would’ve gone through his chest instead of destroying his arm. There was enough power in the shot to send lead a foot into the ground behind him, so you can imagine the damage it did to his body. What if the baby had been there behind him? The daddy still doesn’t get it, but we certainly do. That child will not EVER be spending time with this nutcase again unless it’s with supervision.

I haven’t written about a lot of what’s going on because I refuse to go down the poor-me line of thinking any more. Everyone has problems. I’m thankful that with the problems we face now, we’re being granted solutions, too. I see miracles unfolding every single day. I got my book published. It’ll be reviewed next month by another respected author. On the day my laptop died, I won the money to make its replacement possible. Yes, things have been rough here but the means to help has been provided. Other friends have seen similar help come through during the course of the past month or so.

I have to believe that all things happen for a reason and in the right time. I have to believe that after all I’ve endured throughout my life, this is my season to begin collecting payback, as it were. Only in this case when the bitch came back, she brought presents. Good ones.

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