Monday, July 28, 2008

Just Another Busy Weekend....

We had yet another fun-filled weekend... Friday night we did the 24th of July celebration at Eric's mom's house again. This time Eric and I put together our own fireworks display using the "Magic Whips" (I called them crackle whips in an earlier blog, they are actually Magic Whips) and we helped the kids too, it was fun and I can't wait til next year to do it bigger and better. Saturday we went down to Manti and got the make shift sprinkler system going, I think it should work out pretty well. When we got down there the lawn looked so much better, the neighbor had taken pity on us and started watering our very thirsty lawn. I am glad she won't have to do it any more though. Sunday we had a BBQ at my dad's and I got to see lots of my family that I don't normally get to see. The weekend felt weird though because we always end it at Eric's mom's for Sunday dinner so it didn't feel like it was really over. Weekends always go quickly, but this one seriously flew by. Eric and I ended the night by driving through East Canyon after we dropped off the kids trying to scout out a good wedding spot. We didn't find one, but it really felt nice to try... and we discovered that if you go up to the East Canyon Resort after 5 pm on Sunday you can play on their mini-golf course for free if you bring your own putter and ball. We also watched a couple of episodes of South Park, I am so very proud of us because we nearly have a complete set; we have seasons 1-5, 8 and 10 so we only need 4 seasons (probably 5 by the time we get the other ones).

ITS announced this morning that they are moving the Title Plant but not me. I am happy that I am not moving because I like to bike to work and I can't bike to our Draper location (unless I leave like an hour and a half early), but I am super bummed that they are taking my Ashlies away. I guess I'm not real big on change in general, but bad change is extra nasty. Hopefully it's not permanent though, that's what we keep hearing...

Friday, July 25, 2008

Tough Talk With Tommy

Ben and I sat Tommy down last night and talked with him and told him for the first time that he has autism. Although I was very apprehensive about the whole thing, it actually went pretty well. We all managed to avoid any kind of emotional breakdown and although he was not completely paying attention to the conversation (he continually brought up unrelated subjects, as is his little Tommy way), you have to start somewhere and I think we did well. We really focused on the strengths that Autism brings him (like his amazing reading ability, math skills and memory) and touched a little on the challenges it also brings. We stressed that although some things may require more work for him to accomplish (peer relations, "normal" conversations, etc.) he can absolutely do it. We also let him know that having autism only makes up a part of who he is, it is not who he is. Ben did a pretty good job and although the man drives me crazy, he is a good dad and that's the most important thing - I would much rather have him as a good father and crappy husband/ex-husband than the other way around. We also talked with Syrena because she frequently complains that Tommy gets more attention and gets punished less. We let her know that we love them equally, but yes, Tommy does take more effort and attention and that is part of his make-up. Ben mentioned to both of the kids not to discuss it with people outside of the family for now - a good idea I think (I don't want the kids at school or others to misinterpret the info and turn it into something negative for him), but I am worried that if it's a family secret it may also taint it in their minds. I was amazed because when the whole thing was said and done, Ben actually gave me a hug and said I did a good job. I really wish we could have a good relationship with one another, and perhaps we are finally on the road to establish one. I still often feel like I am pitted against him and that he still tries to tell me what to do. When I think about it, I guess that would be my own damn fault that I feel that way and I need to do some thinking on how not to feel like that.

Anyway.... also wanted to mention that on Wednesday Eric and I took the kids to the Rodeo down at the ESA (Energy Solutions Arena) and they both had a great time. Syrena didn't want to go at first, but I told her she has to come to this one but if she doesn't like it, I won't ever make her go to another one again. She loved it of course since she currently has a horse fetish like her momma. Tommy has always loved the bull riding and was especially ecstatic when that event began. We saw "Detective Booth" from the TV show "Bones" on Fox there... it was cool, I love that show. Of course I didn't have the guts to ask him for an autograph or anything and since our camera is currently on the fritz (some clumsy person dropped it on the super dusty trail to Dog Lake...), we didn't get a picture of him. This weekend we are looking forward to fireworks at Eric's mom's house again (sure to include the famous crackle whips that Tommy is in love with), another freakin' Manti trip (just a day trip on Saturday to set up a poor man's automatic sprinkler system), and a barbecue at my dad's on Sunday!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Longest Blog Ever...

I had a busy and fun weekend... Friday night was our "Girl's Mega Night" that we've had planned since May; the Ashlees and I had fun but Katie didn't come, which was a bummer. We had many shots and watched a couple of episodes of "The Girls Next Door." I must admit I wasn't really impressed with it, but Fife loves it so we watched it. I made Eric breakfast in bed on Saturday, then we took the dogs up to Dog Lake in Millcreek canyon. We went three times last year without incident, but this year Nanuk barely made it. By the time we made it down, he was hardly moving at all. At one point he just layed down on the trail and we had to wait about 10 minutes for him to even get up. I guess he is getting older - it's amazing what a difference one year makes, but I think that was his last trip up to Dog Lake. He's just going to be limited to small one to two hour outings from now on.

It was my Dad's birthday so we went to pay him a visit and shower him with love and affection. Our plan at that point was that we were going to go see the Purr Bats - a local band we saw at the Arts Festival and really liked. Instead, Eric let me shower and get completely ready - clothes, make-up, hair, jewelry, etc. before telling me that he was tired and didn't want to go. I don't get mad at him very often, but I sure was pissed then. I'm over it now, but I told him to never speak of it again.

Sunday we went golfing at the course by our house. We were a couple of minutes late so they gave out our spot and then were jerks about "working us back in." We finally got on and were paired with a couple of older gents - they were really nice but I felt self-conscious about keeping up with them. Eric and I just ended up playing "best ball" between the two of us and that worked pretty well for us. We got some good pointers and were playing better by the end.

I ended the night by calling the kids (which I do every night) and had to talk to Ben. He's actually being very nice and letting me have the kids one night this week even though it's his two weeks with the kids. I'm kind of having a crises because he wants to sit Tommy down this week and tell him that he's autistic. He's going to an autism camp in a couple of weeks with the National Ability Center and Ben wants him to know before then. I'm so scared we're going to make things harder for him or mess something up.... For instance, about 3 or so years ago Tommy had a nightmare about "Finding Nemo." Then he was watching another movie that had the same THX credit at the beginning with the cows and he completely wigged out. He was panic stricken and if Syrena hadn't been in the room when it happened, we'd have never figured out what triggered him. Anyway; trying to help out, we showed Tommy that many of the movies he watched had THX and it was nothing to be scared of. Instead, it morphed into this huge phobia he now has about THX - we can't go to a movie in a theater until it has already started and there are many other adjustments we've had to make to accommodate this fear. I'm scared to death that we are just going to mess things up for him and make it harder instead of better. I'd like to wait a couple more years and have a professional there with us when we tell him.

I will post more about this as it plays out, but I'm thinking I've written a pretty long one today!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Oh the horror of it all, I am still in shock. I ride my bike to work whenever I can and lately have been chaining it to the tree out front of my office building. Yesterday, after I changed back into my biking gear, I went out to ride home only to discover my $3,000.00 Gary Fischer bike was gone. The person(s) had cut the chain and made off with my bike. I was numb with disbelief. I took that bike with me all over in Park City and NEVER once chained it up without incident. The real bummer is that I only paid $75.00 for it at a yard sale and I have my doubts on the chances that I will find another deal like that. So.... if you see anyone riding a green Gary Fisher Tassajara bike, just take 'em out. Later we'll try to sort whether or not it was really my bike.

I just seemed to be having one of those nights in general. I guess I'm just really missing the kids already and I know I'm overly emotional so having that happen just really pushed my woman system over the edge.

A positive spin on the situation.... well, I get to shop for a new bike (don't confuse that with "I get to buy a new bike...). Right now I am borrowing my Aunt's bike (although I don't think anyone has told her that she has so gracioulsy lent it to me) and waiting for my sudden and unexpected financial windfall that will come my way at any moment and allow me to purchase a new bike. Keep the dream alive!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Party in Manti

This last weekend we took a trip down to Manti, Utah - that's where all the wild parties are just in case you didn't know. Our eyes feasted on the magnificent Temple and we were complete.... Eric and his brothers own their father's home down there, but normally we are the only ones that take care of it. But this weekend his brother Andy and his kids came down and helped us out - the yard was a shambles. We have been really busy and unable to go down in 6 weeks and since there is no automated sprinkler system, the lawn was fried (literally burnt in one area, fireworks I would guess -scary!), trees were droopy and flowers wilted. We left the water on for the entire 2 days we were there, never once turned it off and it was still crispy and absorbing the water the instant it touched down. Although it was just more yard work at another house, I had a good time. The kids really had a great time playing with their soon to be cousins and just being out of the house. Mister Naughty Pants Nanuk stole a loaf of bread off the counter and although he was unable to break the bag open, he did give the loaf a good chomping and managed to bite through the bag just enough to get some drool in there and render the whole thing useless for human consumption. My love was unable to let the loaf be thrown out (despite the fact that it is a level 4 contamination), so it is still sitting on our kitchen counter at home; I hope he plans to eat that on his own because I have no intentions of eating Nanuk's Slobber Special Supreme. After Andy left, Tommy decided to spice up the night by swallowing a penny. Why he had the thing in his mouth in the first place, even the leading team of scientists may never know. Ben wanted to make sure Tommy knew it was a big deal so that he'd never do it again and told him (over the phone, to clear up any confusion - I was not with Ben at the time) that he may have to go to the hospital. He spent the night alternately saying that the penny had magically disappeared from his stomach and breaking down in tears that "he was the worst boy ever." Broke my heart! I held and consoled him, but it almost made me cry with him. Fortunately, we have a nurse in the family that told me that as long as he is moving his bowels (fun subject, we'll go there later) and not having problems breathing, he's okay. I'm happy to report that all systems are a go. Let me know if you need a detailed report on my rubber glove inspections.... This ended my two fantastic weeks with the kids and here begins my two weeks without them. I was so emotional about it last night and I know I was cranky with my poor Eric, he puts up with so much from me. I am hoping to pack in lots of plans to fill up that time until I get to see them again.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Fun Fourth!

It's been a little while since I posted, but I don't think I have a whole lot of people reading this, so I'm not thinking it's not such a big deal. There has been a lot that's happened since my last blog.... ITS had to do a big company wide layoff since the market has crashed so hard and they laid off my Katie. All three of us back here cried and cried when we found out and it truly hasn't been the same since. The word around town is that when we pick up again, we'll ask all those people to come back. There are a few that I'm hoping we lose their numbers, but I hope Katie comes back.

The kids and I went swimming with Ashlee and Katie last week, and then we went again with just Ashlee last night and had a great time. Her little dog Molly is so cute, she's almost won me over to the little dog side....

Eric and I went to the Arts Festival and got another picture from his favorite artist Jocham Kneil (I don't think that's exactly how you spell it, but it's darn close); it has star fruit in a snowy aspen forest. I love those things and the ones with the fruits and vegetables I think will look great in our kitchen when we paint it.

The 4th of July was so fun this year, we went to see the new Indiana Jones movie with the kids then we ate at Sweet Tomatoes with my dad, brothers and Celia and Jon. Then my dad and the boys came with us to the Sandy parade. We ended the night over at Eric's mom's house - they do this thing every year with something called a "crackle whip" which you use to string all the fireworks together and then set them off and they will in turn set the next one off. This year they let each kid set up their own and light them and Tommy just loved it. Afterward, we walked up the street a little ways and watched the Murray park fireworks.

I hope this isn't too terribly boring to read, I'll try to spice up the entries and get 'em in here more often....