Saturday, November 29, 2008

First Jazz Game

Jazzalicious! That's right. Just before Thanksgiving, we had a chance (thanks, Schneiders!) to go to the Utah Jazz vs Memphis Grizzlies game down at the ESA. Some friends were headed to Idaho for the weekend, and they let us use their 13th row tickets to take Tyler to his first ever Jazz game. It also happened to be Deron Williams' first game of the season, so it was a special treat. Many have asked about my Facebook entry from last week when I said I was dying Tyler's hair blue. The Jazz game is the reason why I did that. 
Heck, if you're going to take a one-year-old to his first game, you have to let the kid know how important this event actually is. What better way than to give him a blue hair style and a spankin' new DWil jersey? 
We had a good time. Ty cheered for all sorts of dunks, behind-the-back passes, alley-oops, ankle-breakers, and Brewer vs. OJ "Pansy" Mayo trash-talking. All of which of course you didn't see in SportCenter's Top 10 because ESPN hates the Jazz. That's a different story for a different day, though. Back to Tyler... He caught his first glimpse of the Jazz Bear as it came walking up the stairs next to us. I've never quite been able to figure this out. Some kids just love the Bear and other mascots. Other kids cry and hide when the fluffy cosutmed men come anywhere near them. Tyler was somewhere in between. He didn't jump for joy, but he didn't cry either. It'll probably take a few more visits to warm up to a bear in a Jazz jersey.

He almost made it through the entire game, but fell just short on the attention span. 

We left with a few minutes to spare in the fourth, but we took a few photos of Ty with the statues of Stockton and Malone to round out the evening. Youth need to learn from the past to understand the present and prepare for the future. 
Tyler was good karma for the ailing Jazz as they bowled over the Grizzlies. Anytime the Jazz need a win, just let us know (and supply the tickets). We're always happy to take him in the name of helping the team. ;-)

Monday, November 24, 2008

I Stand Firm

So a few weeks ago I pulled off the post I had written about Obama and socialism because, hey, he won, there's nothing I can do about it, and because people had started to get a little heated on the comments. I don't like contention. But since then I have had several people ask me if I pulled off that post because I have been persuaded otherwise. I need to set the record straight! NO I have not joined the ranks of Club Obama. I do have to admit that the one thing I thought was cool is that he IS our first African American president. That's really cool! Other than that I was EXTREMELY disappointed. I simply don't agree that his plans are going to solve our problems.

First, yes I agree that we have a healthcare problem. But NO I do not agree that governmentalizing it is going to improve it. All you have to do is travel south a few hundred miles to the country that everyone seems to want to escape from to see that socialized medicine does NOT work. Ask any mother who has taken a sick baby to the doctor and has to wait for five hours to be treated while her baby screams. Ask the doctors who don't get paid well at all and so may not have a reason to be competitive, meaning the quality of YOUR care goes down. Those are only a couple of the many problems.

Second, no I don't believe there is anything wrong with helping people. In fact, I'm all for it. There are millions of dollars donated to needy people in this country every year. The problem comes when people are FORCED to give. Hmm...where have a heard that before? Someone wanting to force us to do something? ... Let's say I'm wanting to give to a charity but I don't have any specific one that I'm attached to. I would want to look for one where the largest percentage of my money is going to go to actually help the people in need. Tell me, where would the government fall on that list? First? Second? HECK NO. It would probably fall pretty dang close to the BOTTOM of the list. So, here's the problem. People who normally give lots of money on there own are going to be paying a lot more taxes now. As a result, their giving is going to decrease and all that money they WOULD have given anyway is going to go to pay for bureaucracy and government programs that may or may not work. AND THEN people who really need it might get a coin or two. We're supposed to do good of our own free will! Not because the government demands it.

Also, there's the whole deal about his associations with sketchy people. And I don't just believe anything that I hear. I have actually read up as much as I can when it comes to those issues and I have to say that it's really hard to know what to believe. Especially because he is a politician, and even more, one who ran for President of the United States of America. Tell me he doesn't have HUGE motivation to lie about ANYTHING that is going to tarnish his reputation. Going to the source, aka, does nothing for me. Religion and politics are not the same thing. It is a fact that there are many politicians who have lied to get to the top. Conclusion: I don't know what to believe when it comes to all that, but my stance on many of the issues he supports is enough to seal the deal.

The fact is, it's not all about the president anyway. Here in this country we have a system of checks and balances and for as much as he promises the world if you vote for him, there are still congress and the house of representatives that have a say, and a pretty big one, as well. And who knows, maybe I'm wrong. Maybe he'll turn out to be the best dang president this country has ever seen. But I'm not holding my breath.

ANYWAY, I just needed to clear that up. If you really feel the need to comment...ok, go right ahead. But the guy has already been elected, my vote has been cast and so has yours.



Thursday, November 13, 2008

Ty is ONE!!

I can't believe Ty is already one year old! Time literally FLEW by! I remember a year ago being so impatient and just wanting him to come already! I remember FINALLY (yes, he wasn't quite a week late, but it felt like he was SOOOO overdue!!) being induced and how much I loved the anesthesiologist after about an hour. I think I might have come close to loving him more than Ryan right then, but ONLY for a couple of minutes! :) Then Ty was here! The doctor set him on my stomach after he was born and I remember thinking, "holy crap, there was REALLY a baby in there!" I know that sounds so silly, but actually seeing him after 9 months of just feeling him was so SURREAL! It was probably the most amazing thing I have ever experienced! Not the actual birth. I didn't think there was anything incredible or amazing about that, to be completely honest, although Ryan sure did. I still don't know HOW he didn't pass out, but I'm sure glad he didn't! I'm one of those people who DOES NOT need or want a mirror during birth. NO THANK YOU! I mean seriously. There's REALLY no better way to get the kid out?? :) But when he was here and just the thought that he had grown inside of me and that he was MINE (OURS!) was so amazing! Besides my wonderful husband, Tyler is the greatest gift I have been given in this life.

We had a little family get together for his birthday, and had a great time! He loves Baby Einstein and so I made him a cake of the Baby Einstein Caterpillar. I think it turned out pretty cute, but only because my friend Nagila was there to fix all the mess-ups!! Like when the cake that was supposed to be the head fell apart because I forgot to grease the pan! Oops! :) We put it back together and it was all ok.

Ty and Grandma Linda
Can you tell they're brothers?

Singing happy birthday! Mom had to blow out the candle for him since he wasn't too sure what he should do!

Ty wasn't sure what to think when we put a whole cake in front of him. "Is this some kind of a trick?"

He got more confident pretty quickly

Then he started trying to put it in his pants. Maybe he was full and wanted to save it for later?

A little down the pants, a little in the nose...

Now a little chocolate

After a few minutes he got bored and decided he was done and stood up, smearing cake and frosting all over his high chair.

We put him right into a bath, pants and all!

With Grandpa and Grandma Dennis

He wasn't interested in ripping the wrapping paper, which was so surprising! He usually loves ripping paper! Not today! He just wanted the toys. Thanks for all the cool presents family!

He's as upset as his mom about how hard it is to get a toy out of the packaging!! Seriously, you toy-packaging specialists weren't thinking about birthdays and how upset a kid can get if you don't get that toy out FAST!

Ty and his new friend Nagila. She calls him her little brother because I was her "mom" on the mission.

Apparently it was all just a little too crazy for Mark! We wore him out! :)

I love being able to be home to see Ty learn and grow each day. It's so amazing! My baby doesn't really seem much like a baby anymore. Here are some of the things he's been doing lately:

-He talks a lot! Obviously it's mostly babbling, and at times it really just seems like he's trying to tell us a story or something. He gets so animated! But the other day Ryan was here for lunch and he was getting ready to go back to work. I said, "Ty come tell Daddy bye bye." Ty started waving his hand and said , "Baba Dada." It was so stinking cute. Then the next day he actually said "bye." Ryan and I were both surprised.

-A couple of days ago we were at the church waiting for Ryan and so I took Ty into the Relief Society room and started playing the piano. Ty crawled over to a chair that was in the middle of the room, stood up next to it and started waving his arm around. I laughed so hard when I realized what he was doing! He crawled over to the piano, but when I started playing again, he crawled right back to the same chair, stood up and waved his arm around again. It was so cute.

-Tyler loves music and he loves to dance! Anytime he hears upbeat music he'll start bouncing and shaking his body and bobbing his head to the music. He gets a certain expression on his face, and he'll look at us and wait for us to start dancing too.

-He's still identifying colors pretty well. After my last post about that, he wouldn't do it and I thought that maybe we had been mistaken. Well, he obviously wanted to show off the other night. We were at Grandma Pat's house and she wanted to see this trick of his. We were playing with his blocks and I held up two and asked him to take the yellow one. He did. Then two different ones and asked him to take the green one. He did. Then added another color and asked him to pick the yellow one again. He did. Then Grandma decided to really shake things up. She put all of the blocks in the bucket and told him to pick out the blue one and give it to her. There was only one blue block. He looked in the bucket, picked it out and placed it in her hand. She was so amazed, and I was too!

-He just got his first two molars. THAT process hasn't been very fun, but we were glad when we saw that they had finally come through.

-He can identify his hair and his toes. When we ask where his hair is he'll put his hands on his head and start pulling his hair. When we ask where his "piggies" are he'll grab his toes. He loves "this little piggie" and he'll try to do it on us when our toes are showing. One day he was just grabbing my toes one at a time and babbling, and it hurt because he was digging his fingernails in. But then I realized what he was doing! He likes to do it to daddy cause he has bigger toes.

-He doesn't walk much yet. The most he's taken are four steps in a row, but then he drops back to his knees. Pretty soon!

It's so fun to watch him grow and learn new things! Happy one year, little boy!!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Halloween 2008

Ty missed Halloween last year by just a few days and so we were excited to be able to dress him up this year. We found him a cute skunk costume, but it turned out to be too small and when we tried to take it back there weren't any that were bigger. So we kept it. It can be used in the future! Ty ended up being a spider. It was so cute! We went to Grandma Linda's house for a while. She was dressed as a witch and Addie was a penguin. I have pictures of them on my phone and can't figure out how to get them those are to come.

Then we went over to Jorge and Monica's to go trick-or-treating with Aaron and Cameron. They were so cute dressed up as a knight and a dragon (Jorge and Monica were the King and Queen. Or king and princess).

We went trick-or-treating for about an hour until Ty randomly fell asleep! He wasn't even acting tired, and then all of a sudden his head was drooping and he was gone. I guess that was his way of saying he had enough. I'm excited for next year when he'll be able to walk himself and then maybe my arms won't be ready to fall off by the end of the night. :)

Monday, November 3, 2008

My Turn (and Yours, too!)

Unique. We all are, and there is nothing wrong with that. It is our differences that give us the chance to grow and understand each other. That growth is what helps us to make the world a better place. 
I feel fortunate to live in a country with a democratic form of government. It may not be perfect, but it does have a number of checks and balances to make things even out over time.
We have term limits on the president's office. I sure wish Utah's legislature and the U.S. Congress would do the same thing for other state and national officials. I wish we would let Supreme Court judges judge instead of legislate. I wish people would stop pretending the president is the only one who has any say in laws, the economy, war, the environment or health care. Look. your stop in the ballot box is more than just a vote for president. My ballot lets me vote for Utah's U.S. Representative for District 2. I'll be voting for Jim Matheson to keep return to D.C. for me. I like his stance on immigration, the economy and the environment. I get to vote for the governor's office. I'll be voting for Governor Huntsman to return to office again. I like that he kick's the state legislature's rears when necessary. I get to vote for Attorney General in Utah. I'm voting for Jean Welch Hill after having met both her and Mark Shurtleff (who I send best wishes for a speedy recovery). Shurtleff has polarized people on a lot of issues, but lately he has found himself on my bad side for his school voucher stance, pay-day loans and immigration. I can vote for state auditor and treasurer, but my conscience tells me I don't know anything about any of the candidates. That means I'm not likely to vote for those two positions. I was running for Utah's House of Representatives for District 53, and I was beat at the state convention by Kathy Lofft. No hard feelings, though. Mel Brown just has to go. If you want my opinion on him, you'll have to read my letter to the editor in the Park Record from this weekend. I also get to vote for 10 state judges, five state constitutional amendments, and a member of the Wasatch County Council.
Why am I writing all of this? It's easy. While the presidential selection from Utah's voters is not really in doubt, there are many other races that are. If you think there are problems with the economy, the responsibility doesn't fall squarely on the president. Decisions made by cities, counties and states all have an effect on what happens in your pocket book, your schools, your jobs, your recreational opportunities, and just about everything else you do. 
Obama may have great ideas for a kind of universal health care, but it will take cooperation with the representatives and senators you elect from your state. If you're from a state like Utah that may not have it's majority represented in the White House, you can still send a representative who may be more closely aligned with your beliefs. Personally, I think Matheson, Bennion Spencer and Morgan Bowen would all represent Utah better than their opponents, and I don't think enough people have done the research to know anything about them in order to give them a good chance. At the same time, Chris Buttars and Greg Curtis continue to be elected even though they infuriate me every time either opens their fat mouth. Pay attention, people! Each of these people is acting as an extension of YOU when they take their seat as an elected official. 
Don't think that this is over after the ballots are counted, either. If you have a concern, voice it. If you want something done differently, let your elected official know. Whether you elected them or not, they are still your representative, and I believe they will at least consider your idea if you present it. I have sent letters to members of the U.S. House and Senate, and I have gotten responses back each time. Sometimes they have given adequate explanations, and other times they have shown their own incompetence. At least this way you will have a personal reason for reelecting someone or voting them out the next time around. And it's not like you will have to bust out the quill and ink well to communicate with Washington. Many elected officials spend time answering emails on their Crackberry or iPhone. Depending on the issue, you may get a canned response, but you will get a response. 
Unique. Each election is, and there's nothing wrong with that. It is their differences that give us the chance to grow and understand each other. That growth is what helps us to make the world (or maybe just your HOA) a better place. 
Whatever you do, vote. And remember that if you don't vote, I don't want to hear a peep out of you for the next four years. It will still be your right, I just won't care to hear you.