Category Archives: Personal

NEWS RELEASE: Hotline established for Tucson Tragedy

For Immediate Release
Contact: Anna Mary Mackey
Office: (520) 318-6907

CPSA sets up information and support phone line
in response to Saturday’s tragedy

Community Partnership of Southern Arizona (CPSA), which oversees publicly
funded mental health and substance use treatment services in Pima County,
is organizing a community-wide response related to mental health and trauma
issues resulting from Saturday’s mass shooting.

CPSA has set up the Tucson Tragedy Support Line, a no-cost resource for
people struggling with their own reaction to the shootings, those concerned
about a friend or family member, or those who would like information on
typical reactions to such an event. Callers do not need to give their names
or any identifying information to use this service.

Calls will be answered by professional staff who are experienced with
providing support in the wake of a crisis and knowledgeable about other
community resources.

The new Tucson Tragedy Support Line number is (520) 284-3517, available 24
hours/day, 7 days a week. The number will remain operational until further

In addition, CPSA’s Web site,, contains links to local
mental health providers and many other resources that may be of help in a
time of grief and stress.

Reactions to such an event may linger for days or weeks afterward, or only
become a problem when life has gone back to “normal.” Because of this, CPSA
is working with its system of treatment providers and other resources to
build upon, supplement and extend the work of other community entities in
helping our community deal with this event.

CPSA has overseen publicly funded mental health and substance use treatment
services in Pima County since 1995, and currently serves close to 30,000
members. CPSA receives funding from the Arizona Department of Health
Services/Division of Behavioral Health Services (ADHS/DBHS), Arizona Health
Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS), and Substance Abuse and Mental
Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

Please note: CPSA CEO/President Neal Cash is available for comment if you
would like additional information. He may be reached at (520) 318-6900.

Category: Personal

Last Christmas Dance

Category: Personal

Christmas Dance #2

Category: Personal

It’s Christmas time!

Time for me and a couple of my FF friends to break it down for y’all.
Category: Personal

Better Remember This Day

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Today is one of the most important days of the year in the Bubba House. One year ago today, I married m’girl in Prescott Valley, Arizona.

Normally people say the first year is a honeymoon. While we are still madly in love with each other, I don’t know if I could call it a honeymoon. Except for the two weeks surrounding the wedding and the honeymoon in Ireland, real life has taken no break here.

M’girl and I were busy with life before we met. I was going to working and going to school full-time along with training and fundraising for the 3 day breast cancer walk. She was a business owner with partners running a counseling practice, and singing on her church’s worship team.

By the time we married, she had traded her practice in for a full-time job and a part-time practice on her own without partners. I had finished the 3 day walk, but was still doing school and work full-time. I now had the added responsibility of the “honey-do” list associated with moving into a house.

We came to the conclusion that something had to change; since we both have fibromyalgia, life was becoming too much to manage. I stopped working full-time to concentrate on school and running the business end of her counseling practice. While I enjoy the freedom of not having to work 5-6 days a week, I find myself almost as busy. This year we have pledged our assistance to plant a new church in the Maryvale area of Phoenix, a neighborhood that is short on money, long on crime activity (although it’s getting better), and in need of people that care.

In the past year, we have traveled to: Ireland, Ohio, Los Angeles, Washington DC, Ohio again, New York, Denver, San Diego, and Los Angeles again. We have already scheduled trips to New York and Ohio before the end of the year.

Music is another one of our loves. We have seen Keith Urban (3 rows from the front), Little Big Town, Billy Currington, Jason Aldean, and Brooks & Dunn.

However, there is one way that our marriage has not been full of honeymoon fun. Both of us are very independent, smart people. Even though I have been married twice before and her once, neither of us is used to having an intelligent partner disagree with each other’s decisions. While we are blessed by having someone smart to help us navigate life, stubbornness can make for some “interesting” discussions. I am happy to report this is the only real problem we have…which makes us incredibly blessed.

We both love sports, especially MMA and football. A lot of newly-married couples have a conversation in September, with one spouse telling the other that weekends will be spent watching football. However, in my case, m’girl was the one telling ME we would be watching Ohio State football. I tried not to argue too much. 😉

You might say I’m still in the honeymoon phase of marriage. However, I can list many reasons why she is my perfect partner: she loves sports, music, God, spending time together, my friends, and my family. Oh yeah, she also loves me. She truly is my gift from God, my love, and the person I want to spend the rest of my life with.

Thanks for reading my tribute to m’girl. I can only hope that your marriage is as happy and fulfilling as ours. God bless you.

Category: Personal

Ignite Phoenix #6 – How to Support the Troops

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Here’s the video of my presentation. Fortunately, I don’t choke over my words too many times. Links for all of the stuff on the presentation is here.

Category: Personal

Holiday Happenings

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This is not our “Christmas letter”; that will come in some days to follow. However, I thought I would recap (mostly for my poor memory’s sake) our travels over the holiday season.

We flew into Pittsburgh on Christmas Eve. A relatively uneventful flight, no weather delays, hijacking attempts or other foolishness. However, we did have a great flight attendant that catered to us. We never heard for sure how long she was in the Army, but she was in long enough to retire from it. I’d guess that 20+ years would be the range of her service. She also serenaded us a couple of times during the flight, reminding us that the entertainment was without additional fees. Thanks, Southwest, for having a sense of humour.

When we got to the house, we were lucky enough to have a huge Italian seafood dinner being prepared with smelt, calamari, whiting, cuttlefish, and some other stuff that I can’t remember. Leaving Aimee’s parents’ house hungry is something that will never happen.

Christmas day we exchanged presents. While I bought m’girl a dishwasher, washer and dryer for Christmas, I was smart enough to buy a few other things for her. Although I felt like I didn’t buy enough. She bought me a Peyton Manning jersey and sideline cap (yes, I’m a Colts fan), a car stereo (we need a new one in the car and the truck), and shirts, cologne, and other stuff. All I got her was the first two seasons of The Big Bang Theory, a Cowboys jersey, and a very nice hand-painted mug. Well, she says she still loves me, anyhoo.

We also went over to her grandma’s house, and met other relatives there. Grandma lives in a charming farmhouse in Ohio that has fields extending to the Pennsylvania border. The snow that continued to fall made the ride more scenic.

On Sunday we headed up to my friends in Canadaigua, spending time over vino chatting about the good old days…and being constantly harassed by their three kids. A nice evening and morning spent.

We then went to my stepbrother’s house, met their family and my brother’s family for Christmas gift-giving. They have a great house outside of Syracuse, and their two kids (my niece and nephew) are growing up to be great kids.

My stepmom and dad were supposed to drive down, but had a problem with their truck, and couldn’t make it. Aimee and I made the decision to make the three hour drive to their house to see them, even if it was less than 24 hours…and the drive started at 9:00 at night. Started out as a bit of a slick drive, as it snowed almost the entire time…but made it there in good time and safe.

Then it was time to drive back to Ohio…where we spent the rest of the time with Aimee’s family, with the exception of watching UFC108 at Buffalo Wild Wings.

There were bumps along the way…but overall has been an enjoyable Christmas season. The gifts were nice, but what makes the holidays great is being to spend time with family and friends.

We fly back to Phoenix tomorrow…ready to get back in the grind of daily life again.

Category: Personal

Tuesday, December 15

It’s been a great day. Helped my church get started with the stage lighting they need for worship and preaching.

Slow afternoon, but studied for CLEP exam I’ll be taking in next couple of weeks for College Mathematics. Took a practice test before doing much studying; got a good enough grade for a B. I think I’ll do well.

Tonight, made pork chops with rosemary and garlic, stuffing, and butternut squash. Gotta love autumn dinners at home. Later on I made this cake: Melt In Your Mouth Chocolate Cake. Got the recipe from @iamchanelle. Letting it cool overnight; will wait until tomorrow to sample.

If you’re reading this before 7 am 12/17, get over to Liberty Market in Gilbert, AZ. We’re doing East Valley Thursday Morning. Kinda. RSVP if you’re going.

Tomorrow we take delivery of the new dishwasher, washer, and dryer. Just fired up the dishwasher one last time to get rid of tonight’s mess…but this time tomorrow it will be on its way to that great appliance hunting ground in the sky. Or the dump.

G’night, and God bless.

Category: Personal

Thankful in 2009

I try to be thankful each day…because I believe there is so much to be thankful for. Often we focus on what really sucks in life…and there’s enough of that to go around, for sure. But I believe the reason we cherish the holiday season is because it (attempts) to force us to focus on the good things in life. Here’s my list:

I am first of all thankful for a God that loves me (and you) enough to send his only Son to die for our sins. Without Jesus, we would not be able to be in God’s presence. If you want more information on what exactly that means, leave a comment. If you don’t care for my “religious” angle, keep reading.

I am thankful for the woman that married me in June. Aimee and I have had almost six months of a happy and productive marriage…and I have every reason to believe that will continue until we’re no longer here on earth. I love m’girl.

I’m thankful for my family. We’re not exactly the tightest family, but we still keep in touch and love each other. I’m also thankful for my new extended family…and I love them too.

I’m thankful for you, my social media/internet friends. We may not have the most intimate of friendships, but you have a special place in my life. Thanks.

I’m thankful for the nation I live in, the greatest in the world. I’m also thankful that we have men and women selfless enough to sacrifice their days, month, years, and sometimes their lives to keep us and other free. Freedom ain’t free, and Bubba knows that for sure.

I’m thankful for the material belongings I have…more than a lot of people, but not as much as some. It just doesn’t matter where I rank…I have what I need. I’m also thankful for the critters we have around Casa Bubba. They drive me nuts at times, but I’m glad they’re here.

Lastly, I’m thankful for the journey called life. I’ve had ups to make me smile, downs to make me learn, and a ride that I wouldn’t trade for anything.

I’m sure there’s more…but it’s early, and I need coffee. I hope you have just as many things to be thankful for. God bless.

Category: Personal

Big Changes

I was reminded this morning that I had not provided details on some important changes in my life…sorry!

Aimee and I both have really busy lives. She has her job, her private practice on the side, and she’s active in church. I work full time plus some, go to school full time, and do a few other things on the side as well. Needless to say, dating was an adventure, trying to find time to spend together. We thought that once we were married, things would slow down, and life would become more manageable.

Boy howdy, were we wrong.

For some reason, when we married, it seemed like the spotlight was turned on a lot of things that we were putting on the back burner…things that we would not be able to continue to ignore. As we talked and prayed together about the choices we had, it became clear that changes need to be made.

The only change that seems to make sense is for me to quit my full-time job. Being a red-blooded male, I scoffed at the idea of not being a provider for my family. However, after talking and praying some more, this is the best way for me to get school done, so I can get a better job…thereby being a better provider.

So, notice has been provided to my employer. On October 1, my roles will be: full-time student, business manager for Aimee’s practice, and house husband. This will add some flexibility, but I’m still going to be pretty busy for a while.

  • Apply for financial aid for the remainder of my classes
  • 15 page paper
  • Math exam
  • Submit info to college to bypass several core classes
  • Learn medical billing
  • Get set up on multiple insurers websites
  • Create forms needed for the practice
  • Miscellaneous projects around the house that have been ignored because of time constraints

And I’m sure there’s more to that list…but that’s the start. We are fortunate; after working a household budget with a few extras, we will be able to survive on what she’s making for the time being…and once insurance billings start rolling in, we’ll be doing good enough until I graduate.

I am truly blessed. Not because m’girl is being my “sugar momma” and allowing me to finish school…but because we are able to figure out life’s problems together as equal partners…and come up with solutions that make sense.

I am also blessed because of my friends, both online and offline, that have supported me in my life and the events that have happened. Thanks for your support…and I’m looking forward to this new chapter in my life.

Category: Personal