Monday, September 30, 2013

Three years ago

Last week was three years since my Stem-cell transplant.  I have been doing a bit of reflecting on what anniversary dates mean.  And for me, they represent moments in time where good and not so good things have happened.  September 27th is a date that is important to me because of the treatment that I had to undertake for Hodgkins.  Last year I got a tattoo to commemorate the two year mark and the likelihood of the lymphoma not coming back, statistically speaking.  I feel great, and thankful for my second chance.  This year has been different.  As I have no reason to be ungrateful, this sept 27th has brought a lot of different emotions.  A little bit of depression.  I have been remembering experiences that weren't so good during my treatment.  And I guess it reminds me that I don't want my friends and family to ever have to experience anything like it.  My friend Dave Tuck that passed away about a month and a half ago fought his hardest, but couldn't beat it.  Then there is Haley Wastel and Chris Mountyjoy that seem to be winning and kicking its ass.  I guess what I'm trying to say is i've been a bit confused with the realty of cancer.  I've been realizing with summer coming to a close and winter just around the corner, that time crepes by so quick.  Ive been working so much just to get back on my feet, I think i've lost track of whats important to me.  And its easy to get caught up in the day to day things that some times its hard to pull back and just enjoy the moment.  I am guilty!  Not sure why I let myself get so caught up with such mundane things.  But I do.  I am human.              

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Time Flys into New Beginnings

  It occurred to me that I haven't posted anything since the first of the year.  Im a little disappointed in myself because there have been so many things that have gone on since treatment.  Today is day+1062 since transplant.  Theres not one day that goes by that I don't think about the experience and only until recently understood what that has meant in my life.  So I have a confession.  I've spent some time in therapy sorting out my head.  For the last year, I have started on a journey on gaining knowledge of myself and surroundings.  Learning.  Growing.  Changing.  I have broke down every aspect of my life to understand who I am, and what my basic needs and wants are.  Discovering my WHY!  My environment is and always has been a key in decisions and choices.  But I was too closed to see it before my diagnosis.  With that said, I've started making choices that are best for me and my family.  Ive made some tough choices in how I want to spend my time and who I want to spend it with.  My goals are simpler.  My need and want is to build financial freedom, my why is my Family!  My Passion is helping people not go through what I did and the treatment I endured with cancer.
  I lost my friend and partner Dave Tuck a few weeks ago to Pancreatic Cancer.  I watched him fight it to the end.  His pain is motivating!  His influence was boundless!  His personality bigger than life!  The memorial was a week ago today.  The amount of love for him was breathtaking.  But it's a staunch reminder that what Dave, Mike D and I have started With Strap In For Life is for something so much bigger than any of us.  I know Dave is with us in spirit but i wish he was here to experience it with us.  I miss my friend!
  So I've started rebuilding my financial situation from scratch.  Every bit of savings, retirement I had went to medical and living expenses.  I finished a book recently that changed everything I thought about money.  Its called Rich Dad Poor Dad.  I had heard about this book for years from my mom, saw it on book shelves, and its the #1 best selling finance book of all time.  Man I should have picked up this book when it came out!  It is by Robert Kiyosaki and I highly recommend this it.  I am using some of the principles in Rich Dad Poor Dad to take control of my financial future with the help of my family.  I Just started his next book called the Cash Flow Quadrant.  Its the next step in understanding money, how its made, and how you can have it work for you instead of you work for it.        

Stay tuned! Exciting things are happening!    


Monday, January 14, 2013

New Beginnings!

Todd, Mike and Dave at Dew Tour Breckenridge
Happy new year everyone!  Wanted to give you an update to what has been happening.  Its been a bit of a whirl wind but things are starting to take shape with the non profit.  For those of you that don't know, its called Strap In For Life.  David Tuck, Mike Daniel and myself have partnered up and have gotten this thing off the ground.  We incorporated January 9th with the CO Secretary of State as a non profit and in the process of putting together all the necessary information on submitting and acquiring 501c3 status!  Exciting and daunting at the same time.  Check out our Facebook page at . We did a soft launch at Dew Tour and had very good response.  Gave out some Hoodies, Tee's, Beanies and stickers.  Im going to be making an appearance at x-games and give out gear and also get some riding in. We are also going to the Snow Industries of America (SIA) trade show at the Colorado Convention Center January 31 - February 3rd.  Since we are starting from scratch we have put together a mini fundraiser for that expense and help Dave battle Pancreatic Cancer.  The goal is to get roughly $2000 together for the show,  doing a small mixer on Friday for Dave and for filing fees for the IRS to acquire our 501c3 status!  Were almost halfway there.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.  Go to and donate a buck or two!

Thanks everyone!      

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

2 years

Hey everyone, sorry it's been a while since I updated my blog.  It's been a bit hectic in the old Franzen world but such is life.  

September 27 marked the two-year date since my stem cell transplant. I cannot begin to explain the gratitude and feelings that have gone along with having a second chance! Two years of reflection have help me understand myself and my surroundings. What is important and what is not.  The time has gone by quickly juggling work and family.  I constantly think about my treatment and time spent in the hospital.  Health wise, things are good.  My blood counts are looking good and don't have any scans planed till the beginning of December.  Im tired of the scans,  they create so much anxiety.  

Work, Family Illness.  Its been tough watching my father get sick.  A couple weeks ago, my father was diagnosed with a unknown lung fibrosis.  I know there's no explanation, but I still keep asking the question why?   Im wondering if his years in the excavation trade has something to do with it.  All the dust and dirt?  I've been following in his footsteps for the last six or seven years now and starting to wonder if its worth it.  From a health standpoint, I've already been through a huge battle, and i'm a bit paranoid that excavation and construction work is going to lead me down a similar path as dad's.  From a construction standpoint, its not worth building anything in this town since there is so much red tape.  Hypocritically speaking!  The development project that I have been working on has only proved that to me.  In other words, Stress.  Breckenridge is and has a really good small town community and that was prevalent during my fundraisers.  I am having to start from scratch financially, and i'm in a industry that has such high overhead, especially from a mechanical standpoint.  Ive seen my payroll taxes go up, liability insurance go up, unemployment insurance go up all while making less and less money.  Is it worth it?  I think Im leaning towards no.  There has to be a better way!     

So in this endless quest to deal with finances, I feel like my future opportunities involve winter work that has nothing to do with my passion, snowboarding.  Which is the hole reason why I never left Breckenridge.  Breck has always been home, but as of recently its not feeling very home like.  There has been so many changes and challenges here that my love for this town is wavering.  And since it is harder to enjoy my passion, I feel Breck isn't offering what it use to.  Im starting to feel that bigger change is coming down the pipeline.

The Family is doing well, Rayna is loving SHS Rugby and looks like they have a good JV team brewing.  They haven't been winning a hole lot but playing seven person division 1 varsity teams, What a great experience!  I don't know much about rugby, but this is pretty cool.  Kalina just finished up SMS intramural soccer.  She is such a chatter box on the field.  Its too funny.  Im very proud of both of them.  Erika's doing well, her birthday is Friday.  Looking forward to getting out of town!      

Thanks everyone for reading!



Tuesday, December 27, 2011

What a year!

Sorry about not updating the ol' blog lately, its been since May since I wrote last.  It has been a very challenging last half year.  Everything was very uneventful until the last week in July when my dad and I went to British Columbia for a fishing trip on the Charlotte Queen.  Caught a bunch of fish to fill up the freezer.  Aside from puking my brains out the first two days, dad started having some breathing issues on the third night but seemed under control.   Two days after we got home, thats when everything got complicated.  Dad was rushed to the Hospital and eventually was taken to St. Anthony's in Denver due to respiratory complications.  He was moved into ICU and ventilated.  He unfortunately was not able to be at my wedding that comming Saturday.  So a day that was suppose to be happy and full of cheer and optimism, was filled with thoughts and prayers for dad.  To add to the madness, my grandmother pass away the following day after my wedding.  Fortunately my grandmother had lived a great full life and I can only hope to be as fortunate!  With dad in the hospital and and my mom grieving about her mom passing, it was decided that we still go on our honeymoon.  Dad was ventilated for about six days, pretty much while my family and I was in Florida.  He was released a couple weeks later and came back up to Breck.  A couple days later, mom called 911 because of a heart attack and dad was rushed right back to denver.  He was intubated again and when he stabilized, they did an angiogram and angioplasty on his heart (two stints).  He was released again after a few weeks and did not come back up to altitude.  A family friend Charlie let us use his apartment down town since he was visiting friends in California.  About a week or so after he was released, he collapsed eating at the Palm about a block away from where he was staying.  His O2 levels dropped to the low 60's and was rushed back to the hospital.  He was again intubated and I got down there as the sedation was kicking in.  I have never seen my father so desperate and helpless and that memory is burned into my sole!  That time did it for me.  The reality of him potently passing was very real and hard to comprehend.  The pillar of strength in my life was fighting for his life and I couldn't do anything about it.  The emotions were of helplessness and sadness.  Mom was loosing it and Chris was five thousand miles away and to get last minute tickets from Sao Paulo were financially out of reach.  But we did get him and Noah up here towards the end of September to see the family and just hang out with dad.  It had been almost three years since he was back in the states.  I did my best with a development project and put my nose to the preverbal grindstone to get through the political, HOA and construction issues that have been bestowed upon this project. Ill save that for another entry.  Fortunately dad is doing well and is looking forward to getting to Destin and recovering at sea level.  
So what a year right!  September 27th was my one year since my transplant.  When I look back, I'm in a bit dumbfounded with everything that went down.  It has been a roller coaster ride of events up to now.  I got a lot of snowboarding in right after I got out of Brents Place to get back into shape and it turned out that it was one of the best seasons in Colorado in close to a decade if not all time.  Work became steady enough in March to give my self a little breathing room.  Summer hit and things seemed to be moving along smoothly with the exception of dad.  Honeymoon in Orlando was the ticket with the girls, made Universal Studio's the goal.  It was really nice to get out tof the mountains and into some heat.  Although a heat index of 110 was a little much.  But I finally felt like I thawed out.

I started a little snowplow business this fall to keep me busy through the winter and spending time in the office getting year end stuff done.  Christmas was great and the girls are in AZ hanging with their other side of the family.  Lucky girls get two christmas's!  hahahahah

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone!


Monday, May 23, 2011

Recovery Road

Here is a quick little update.

Things are going good and working my ass off.  Last sunday I went to A-Basin with Devon O'neal and got an up date on ESPN.  The article turned out short and sweet.  Check it out!

A-Basin 5/15/11 

Went to an NRA dinner with my dad Saturday night.  Good times and saw a bunch of old friends.  But the best part of the night was dad picking up a new Kimber Gold Match 2 out of one of the raffles.  A very nice pistol.  So were going to go fire it off soon.

The duplex is dried in and siding is going on, masons are laying stone, roof is dried in, plumbing is roughed in and electric should be done by Thursday.  I took this photo last week...

 Ill have more photos of it later.

Enjoy the week!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Recovery Road

   Thanks for being patient with me.  Today is day +221 since transplant...
Since the doc's gave me the ok to start working, ive been busy in the field and office working on building a spec duplex building out by the Breck golf course.  Doing the book keeping and payroll ends up taking up a bunch of time too.  So I've been slacking on getting in here and writing.  Throw in a little computer failure and blog writing gets put on the back burner...

   Yesterday I had a scheduled PET scan.  It was a long day and my anxiety levels were a bit on the high side.  Ill tell you it doesn't get any easer!  I guess that is why I have been working a lot. Helps keep my head focused.  But this one was tense.  This was the first scan with out being in the middle of treatment.  All the doctors say that the chances of reoccurrence are greatest with in two years after transplant.  So when it come time for the PET scan to come around I get strait up scared!  I had a bout a two hour wait between my scan and oncologist appointment.  Didn't want to smoke weed for anxiety as I wanted to take the news completely sober.   Fortunately the scans showed no signs of the Lymphoma!  I had quite an emotional release when I got to my car!

   So for the first time since I can remember, I wish the ski season wasn't over.  I know I can go to the Basin, but, tough seeing it closed so early.  I remember it staying open till some time in May.  I guess with all the snow...  I was having a lot of fun this season.  I need to ask the forest service about a special use permit after the season ends.  Could have had two extra weeks of powder!  Don't get me wrong, i'm ready for summer.  Ready to play golf and be in shorts.  Living up on Boreas Pass with easily five feet of snow in the yard...

   Ok, A politics rant.  Don't Run... So we got UBL!  Ill tell you what, I would have pulled the trigger myself if I had the chance!  Im also glad that out president made the decision by not releasing the photos.  It shows that Americans are a better people and that we have class!  Unlike the middle east bastards that drag our troops and reporters through the sand and dirt after decapitating them.  It also shows that the USA is the best country in the world!
   For the record, I don't agree with pretty much any of our represented politicians!  Demarcate or Republican!  None of them care about the little guy and the little business.  I just saw my tax rate increase for my business, and frankly I don't have the money to pay.  Let alone the certainty of work!  Add retarded fuel prices and you got your self the perfect recipe for bankruptcy.  Im not going there yet, but I looked at a monthly snap shot of my finances and 38% is going to fuel.  Fucking great!  Heres a link from The Heritage Foundation on our current budget levels.  In other words, i'm tired of politicians making big decisions that affect my life with out my opinion!  They are making everyday life more complicated!  I thought my vote means something?

   If you want a good book to read, Freakonomics by Stephen J. Dubner and Steven D. Levitt.  A good read and makes you think!  I especially like the chapter Why drug dealers still live with there parents!  It got me a bit more interested in economics and how it all works together.