Monday, August 25, 2008

Bees Baseball Game

Jill treated us to night out this past week.

We started by meeting at Liberty Park where we watched the geese for few minutes. Then we ate some yummy Chinese food at Sampan.
Then it was off to the game.

The game was actually pretty exciting in an anxious, danger-lurking, sort or way. We were seated a little bit past the third base and only 4 rows up. We had to keep our eyes open for foul balls, especially when a left-hander was up to bat.

There seemed to be an awful lot of left-handed batters and quite a few foul balls. The girl sitting behind us caught one of the foul balls, although it was tossed up by a player, not off of the bat.

About half way through the game, Maya turned to me and said she wanted a hot dog. She told us she was full at the restaurant after eating 4 cream cheese wantons and "a chicken with a tail" (battered, butterflied shrimp). But you know what they say about Chinese food...

She ate the entire hot dog. I thought for sure I would get a bite or two of the abandoned dog, but no such luck.

The Bees gained the lead and lost it several times. We left just after the seventh inning stretch just our team hit a home run and regained the lead again. I learned later that ended up winning the game in extra innings.

Maya said her favorite part was the singing and she was trying to remember the words and sing "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" as we left.

Thanks Jill, it was a fun evening.

Here are a few more pictures.

Friday, August 22, 2008

New Babies

Baby Lexi (Burk)

Curtis and Brittany are now proud parents of their first child. Little Alexia (Lexi) was born on August 9, 2008 which is also her uncle Justin's birthday.

As with Justin, who refused to be born on 8/8/88, Lexi missed the date of 8/8/08. But apparently 9 is really her number, not 8.

Born on the 9th at 9:11PM, 7 lbs 9oz, 19 inches long, in room 9.

Saturday Brittany was timing her contractions and was waiting until they were just right - according to 'the book'. This being her first, and regardless of how many people told her that every pregnancy is different, she was wanting everything to be just as 'the book' described. After a page full of recorded contractions, they were within her (or 'the book's') acceptable parameters and they were off to the hospital.

Jill and I, along with Chris and Mindy, went out to the Cheesecake Factory to use up our Christmas gift cards then we stopped by the hospital to see how things were progressing. While we were there, we were all watching the monitor as Brittany was having each contraction. They were getting stronger and much more painful. Mindy (our RN in the family) noticed that Brittany's shoulder was completely soaked and quickly realized that it was her epidural medicine leaking out! Jill and I left while they were summoning nurses and doctors to remedy the pain issue. Within about an hour she arrived and everyone is doing great. On Sunday, Jill and I went to visit them at the hospital before I had to hop on a plane for training in Seattle.

Here are more pictures of Lexi.

Baby Jarron (Jensen)

Matt and Tina welcomed little Jarron into the world on Thursday, July 10th. We wanted to help them out be bringing over a dinner but also wanted to spend a little bit of time with them. We wanted to do something different since we knew that would have to put-up-with casseroles from other people. So we decided to bring and cook them a full bar-b-que meal. We took over a variety of grillin' meat like teriyaki marinated chicken breasts, thick pork chops, and seasoned steaks from Snider Brothers Meat. Jill made some jello (when in Rome...I mean Utah!) and I made some yummy potato salad. Rolls, chips, guacamole and soda rounded out the feast.

Several days later I went back and shot a few family portraits. Unfortunately they didn't turn-out that great as the young ones were wrestled into position. As you can see, Jaden is exhibiting a heavy dose of his father's genes! One of the main reasons for the photo shoot was so that Matt could send an updated picture of his family to the 20 Year Cottonwood High School Reunion Commitee. You already saw that blog.

Here are more pictures of the Jensen's.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Maya's First Bike Ride

So tonight we finally accomplished a goal that has been eluding us.

We finally gave the bike riding thing another shot after a couple months. Last night we were able to get on the bike again which was really only the second time ever trying.

She did really well at getting me really tired as I ran along side trying to keep up. Oh, and she did really well at learning how to ride. We ran out of daylight but she was really excited to try it again.

So today we went over to the cemetery again with its wide, flat roads and no traffic. After she made me run the lanes a couple of times I could no longer keep up. We went back to the house so I could my bike and Jill came over to take a few pictures.

We rode around and around the cemetery lanes for the next hour and half. She practiced her stops and starts and did a great job. Our neighbors were out walking and called her a pro. Maya latched onto that and kept saying "Watch out, I'm a Pro now!" and "Dad, you can't keep up with me, I'm a Pro!"

Way to go Maya!
We are proud of you.

There are a few more pictures here.

Happy 60th Birthday Kathy

We are very blessed to have Kathy/mom in our life and even more blessed to see her everyday. It was a fun honor to celebrate her birthday last Sunday, August 10th. The kids got together and organized Sunday dinner which included yummy Barbacoa pork burritos with all the good fixin's and a delicious chocolate cake with fudge frosting. The group was a little small as Corey left that afternoon to Seattle (hence me writing the post), Cami and Matt who are still out East and Curtis and Brittany were in the hospital welcoming Lexi into the world.

We started the party with telling Kathy what we love and appreciate about her (thanks Chris for the idea), had a good cry and then ate dinner. We had the house decorated with yellow roses, thinking they were Kathy's favorite but oops her favorite are actually pink. I think we will remember that from now on. We also had found a bunch of pictures that we hung up all focused on Kathy throughout her life. We had some good laughs making fun of the fashionable outfits and long blonde wig.

We then enjoyed spending time together as a family and Kathy opened up her gifts. The gift theme was "Sassy Grandma". We purchased her a fun new outfit complete with fall coat and jewelry for her to wear on a fun night out. We all enjoyed hanging out and being together.

The evening was only dampened when Kathy needed to leave to go spend the night with her mother in law because her father was in the hospital. Thankfully he has returned home and we continue to pray for his strength and health.

The kids are currently working on putting together a book like we did for Cecil so they will having matching coffee table books. Hopefully she likes it. Surprise! we don't know if you knew this.

WE LOVE YOU KATHY. Thanks for being such a great mom. We love that you are here and can spend time with us. (love Maya)

Here are the rest of the pictures that Jill took.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Soundtrack of My Life

I rarely do this type of thing but I saw it on Anne's blog and since I like music I thought I would give it a shot and see what we go.

If your life was a movie, what would the soundtrack be?
1. Open your music library.
2. Put it on shuffle
3. Press play
4. For every question, type the song that's playing
5. When you go to a new question, press the next button
6. Don't lie and try to pretend you’re cool...just type it in, man!

  • Opening Credits: "Ground on Down" by Ben Harper
  • Waking Up: "White, Discussion " by Live
  • First Day at School: "Dancing with Tears in my Eyes" by Ultravox
  • Falling in Love: "Prayer to St. Peter" by Edwin McCain
  • Losing Virginity: "Publish My Love" by Rogue Wave
  • Fight Song: "Teddy Boy" by Paul McCartney
  • Breaking Up: "I Do It For You" by Bryan Adams (Robin Hood Soundtrack)
  • Prom: "Big Tears" by Elvis Costello
  • Life: "Lie To Me" by Depeche Mode
  • Mental Breakdown: "Fight from the Inside" by Queen
  • Driving: "Wires and Waves" by Rilo Kiley
  • Flashback: "Thorn of Crowns" by Echo and the Bunnymen
  • Getting Back Together: "Cat's in the Cradle" by Ugly Kid Joe
  • Wedding: "I'll Do Anything/Beautiful" by Jason Mraz (Live)
  • Birth of Child: "Mamma Mia" by A*Teens (Cover of Abba)
  • Final Battle: "My Baby" by Lil' Romeo
  • Death Scene: "Your Face" by Peter Murphy
  • Funeral Song: "Psychopath" by John Lydon (Leftfield Remix #3)
  • End Credits: "Eugene's Lament" by Beastie Boys
Here is the Sequel, just because...
  • Opening Credits: "Hootchie Kootchie Man" by Steppenwolf
  • Waking Up: "Fire Woman" by The Cult
  • First Day at School: "X Squad" by Mortal Combat Annihilation Soundtrack
  • Falling in Love: "Sarah's Panic" by Jager; Rubini (The Hunger Soundtrack)
  • Losing Virginity: "Wild River (Colorado)" by The Samples
  • Fight Song: "Hither To" by Cocteau Twins
  • Breaking Up: "Just Lose It" by Eminem
  • Prom: "Wishlist" by Pearl Jam
  • Life: "Chica Bonita" by RikRok and Shaggy
  • Mental Breakdown: "You Wear Flowers" by Peter Breinholt
  • Driving: "Nerves" by Bauhaus
  • Flashback: "Stardust with Dust" by Cassius
  • Getting Back Together: "Heartache" by Pepsi and Shirley
  • Wedding: "Too Funky" by George Michael
  • Birth of Child: "Giving it Back" by Matthew Sweet
  • Final Battle: "Pyrite Pedestal" by Pretty Girls Make Graves
  • Death Scene: "The World is My Oyster" by Frankie Goes to Hollywood
  • Funeral Song: "Cartrouble" by Adam and the Ants
  • End Credits: "Motion Picture Soundtrack" by Radiohead
Interesting results

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Twenty Year Reunion!

That's right - the big 2-0!

Cottonwood High School, Class of 1988!

We had our reunion this weekend and to my surprise, it was actually pretty enjoyable.

I never went to any of the other reunions. The consensus I got from others was that at 5 years everyone is working on school and starting a family, 10 years everyone talks about their egos, I mean accomplishments, but by 20 it is a more take or leave attitude. People are basically stable, smaller egos, and so what if I gained a few extra pounds!

High school was not necessarily a pleasant phase of my life. I had a few friends that let me tag along with them but mainly I was just a shy, awkward kid. I did have several very popular friends due to us living within the same ward and through them I had a certain level of acceptance into the cool crowds by association. Hopefully I am not painting a picture of being the shunned outcast because that is not true at all. I just didn't ever feel like I fit in anywhere.

Over the last 20 years, Matt J. has really been the only friend that I kept in contact with. I have known Matt since the 7th or 8th grade, stayed friends throughout the years and now live in the same ward. I have bumped into a few people here and there over the years but didn't keep in touch.

So anyway, back to the reunion. Friday night they had a social for the alumni. The gals win the prize for keeping themselves in shape much, much better than the guys. A lot of us (myself being near the top of the list) have been working hard on our image but in a generally negative way. Some people have changed very little over these 20 years, both physically and maturity.

It was great to see old classmates and get caught-up (very rudimentary) on each others lives. Jobs, marriages, kids, where you have lived, etc).

Saturday morning Matt J. and I met up with Chris B. and Mike C. for breakfast. It has been fun to hear about one another's adventures.

During the day on Saturday, Jill and Maya played in the pool while I read through the memory book of a lot of the alumni.

Saturday night we brought along our spouses to a nice buffet dinner at the Cottonwood Country club. We all got together for a big group photo, chatted with many more people and had a pretty decent time.

I was able to introduce Jill to a few of those popular friends from my old ward and they actually were dishing out some pretty big, unsolicited, compliments. Thanks Lara, Deborah and Andrea!

They gave out prizes for various categories like:
  • Who lives closest to the school
  • Who live the furthest away from the school
  • Who has kids attending Cottowood
  • Who has been married the longest amount of time
  • Who has been married the shortest (we won that one)
  • Who has the most kids (Deborah with 7 did not win! Three people had EIGHT kids!!!)
  • Who has the newest kid (Matt and Tina won that)
  • Who is a grandparent
  • Who is still in school (Chris won)
  • And there was a prize for those couples that were in our graduating class (I think there were 5)
Anyway, it was an enjoyable evening and would highly recommend going to your 20th.

New Bedroom in the Basement Apartment

Most of our spare time this spring and summer has been spent trying to build a new master bedroom for the basement apartment.

My dad starting sorting and moving stuff that occupied the space back in January.

Jill and I started to really get involved around March and April.

Then it consumed just about every Saturday and many, many weeknights.

We encouraged my dad quite a bit during the sorting process and I was actually quite surprised how much stuff left the house, both donated to DI and the dump.

Most of the stuff that was in the basement has been there (undisturbed) since they moved into this house over ten years ago.

We hauled off several furniture items, lots of books, and the even the old IronRite ironer machine (It is the big, white thing under the TV in the first picture). It is probably a collectible (Ebay has a few for $50 to $250) but it was just too big and it was decided to finally let it go. Just for fun, you can see a video of the Ironrite in action.

Many more items were moved to the garage for a future garage/yard sale including many old computers and monitors.

My dad and I are not fast workers by any stretch of the imagination. We also do not do this stuff very often, so you have to add a few hours here and there as we try to figure out our next steps.

There were multiple times where I ended up just being the moral support as I waited and watched as he did the figuring or working on a single person task. It has been a lot fun working with my dad.

My dad has a reputation of being very frugal and a pack rat.

Fortunately and unfortunately a large majority of the room was built with stuff he already had.

Fortunate because it saved a lot of money, unfortunate because it validated his pack rat piles.

Sorry mom!

With the exception of the closet space, the new room ended up slightly larger than my parent's master bedroom upstairs!

We thought that the room would suddenly feel much smaller once the king size bedroom set was in but amazingly there is still ample room around the bed.

The new hallway linen/vacuum closet is a great addition. We can finally move the vacuums out of the walkway in the kitchen space.

Maya is very excited about her new room. She wasted no time decorating the room herself and did a great job.

Everything is now decorated in pink with flowers and butterflies on the walls. She is loving the queen size bed (instead of the couch) and has been doing much better at settling down, falling asleep, and staying asleep through out the night. She really did not like sleeping on the couch (and so close to the outside door).

As always, you can find more pictures of the basement room construction on my SmugMug site.