Monday, January 6, 2014

Utah Names Part 2

I know it's been a while since I posted.  The last few months were pretty hard for me/us.  Living in tight quarters with the parents, not having my own space, stressing about the house, being locked inside from the below-freezing temperatures.  There just weren't a whole lot of fun things to talk about.

We have now settled into our new house.  Boxes are everywhere but it's so wonderful to have our own space!!  We are getting into a new routine... finding grocery stores and learning our way around.  The kids also started preschool today which was great.  Not just for me, but for the two oldest who got to go and play and socialize with people their own age.

Today T came home with a paper listing the kids in his class, and I just had to laugh!  The names of some of these kids are so Utah.  I had to ask him on a couple if they were a boy or a girl.  So here's some new names from his class and others I have come across lately.  Tell me, what's your favorite?

Atalie (Like Natalie, without the N)
Haggan (A boy)
Dakoda (Not to be confused with Dakota)
Siena (Perhaps after their car?)
Kameron/Camryn/Cameron (take your pick!)

Wow.  I'm exhausted.  Time to go unpack some more boxes.  I promise to get some pictures up of the new house at some point.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Stick People

Have you seen that Jerry Seinfeld stand up routine where he makes fun of people who drive minivans?  Specifically people who put up the little stick figure families to let you know exactly who is inside?  Well, I hope Jerry never comes to Utah, because it might just be too much for him to take. 

Here's a small collection of pictures of stick people and decals on cars here.  Some are quite amusing while others make me want to cry.  Let's take a look at a few...

The traditional sticker to let you know everyone and their hobby...

The Disney Family...
Disney loves camping family...
 The BYU Family...

 BYU Family again...
And here again...
The U of U family...
The Star Wars / Yellow Submarine Family...
The Broncos fans..
I have absolutely no idea what this one is supposed to mean...

And this may be one of my favorites...
The hunting one kind of leaves me speechless.  The quote on the right is taken from part of a scripture in the Book of Mormon.  A scripture which has absolutely NOTHING to do with hunting.  The scripture is in reference to a family who is commanded by God to leave their home -- along with their gold and silver and servants and luxuries of being a wealthy family -- to travel in the wilderness to the promised land.  The hunting reference is sort of lamenting the fact that they can't just sit back and let their servants do all the work, but now they actually have to hunt to get food.  It's a scripture about OBEDIENCE and SACRIFICE. 
And it makes me absolutely crazy that someone would use scripture to justify their hobby to hunt.  I'm not even against hunting per se, I just don't think you should glorify it by twisting scripture. 
I'm reminded how in DC, people didn't put up stickers of their families, but of their alma mater.  The more prestigious the better.  I don't have any stickers on my car, but I told Dave that instead of stick figures I was going to put up stickers of the states where everyone was born.  I thought it would be hilarious because no one would have a clue what those funny shapes were supposed to be.  I can see it now...
So what's on your car?  

Monday, September 23, 2013

My Pinterest House

I love Pinterest!  I could (OK, I do) spend hours pinning photos of my Dream House both inside and out.  I love looking at everyone's creative solutions for organizing and decorating and generally living life like a real life Martha Stewart.

In my Pinterest Dreams, I have a home that looks like this...

Dream home!...but it needs an outside pool

... is perfectly decorated...

living room decorating ideas #toniclivingdreamroom #homedecor

... and dinner is always a masterpiece ready at 6 pm...

sweet potato crusted fish with cilantro lime vinaigrette

But in my real life, I'm living in a two bedroom, 1 1/2 bath apartment with my husband and three children.  And by apartment, what I really mean is my parent's basement.  But don't get me wrong... it's pretty sweet.  For example.....

I have an extra coat closet in this unused area by putting up a shower rod....

And you know how on Pinterest you see all those cute headboards using an old door made from reclaimed wood?  Well look at this Pinterest!  I have a REAL door for a headboard.  And not only that, but this real door actually doubles as a closet which holds Christmas decorations.  (Mind blown!)

And my children think that watching cartoons on a 100" screen while sitting on leather recliners is normal.  

But it's not all bad.  I do have a full kitchen down here, complete with an oven, fridge, dishwasher and even granite counters.  (Not that play thing pictured above)  And let's not forget the Fruit Room where I can raid all the food I want!  

Plus the view isn't bad either!

**I feel the need to point out that I don't actually sleep on a mattress on the floor all the time.  We needed to sleep train the baby, and that was proving impossible while sharing a room with him, so we slept out here for a few days.  A low point in this whole Moving-to-Utah thing for sure.  

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Building a House Part 2

I haven't posted about our house in a while because I haven't been excited about it in a while.  The whole process can be quite frustrating, and when you are just sitting around waiting for something to happen, it doesn't make the waiting any easier.  But, in the last few weeks we've had a breakthrough.  Literally!

We had a pre-dig meeting....

We broke ground....

They put in some footers...

And then a foundation....

Landon had fun playing in his new backyard...

They framed the basement...
(Do you see the guest bedroom?!)

And now I have a fruit room!

And then we came back from vacation and they added the second story...

It's starting to look like a house!  And, for the first time, I realized how big this house is going to be.  It's probably due to the fact that I've been living in my parent's basement for so long.  Before that we were in a 2400 s.f. townhouse with no garage or a backyard.  Oh, to have space!!  Dave and I are convinced we are going to lose our kids in this house, but I'm OK with it.  :)

Monday, August 12, 2013

Utah Politics

We were outside this evening watching the kids ride their bikes on the driveway, when a man approached us with this flyer.

He's running for City Council and told us to vote for him.  He tried to explain (a bit unsuccessfully)  how to get to the polling station after we told him we're new in town.  But based on all the grammar and spelling mistakes, I think I'll pass.  (Note he even misspelled the city name!)

Sunday, August 11, 2013

We have Assimilated

Well that didn't take long.  It seems we are becoming Utah faster than we ever thought possible.  After all my posts on child safety and driving golf carts to church, we did the unthinkable today.  We drove to church without putting our oldest kids in car seats!!

We were heading out the door and were actually going to be on time for church today.  Dave was putting the kids in the car when he realized our car was dead.  Not just mostly dead, but all the way dead.  We had less than five minutes before church started so we just threw the kids in the back seat of the other car and drove the 1.3 miles to church.

So there you have it.  I'm either a huge hypocrite or have totally become one with Utah.  It's really quite humiliating I think.  :)

Oh, and on the way out of church, I noticed ANOTHER (different) golf cart someone had driven to church.  I'm thinking we should just go all the way and really become Utahans.  Maybe I'll look into the budget and see if we can afford a golf cart to go to church.  Then we really won't have to worry about seat belts and car seats anymore!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Baby You're a Firework!

Utah LOVES Fireworks.  LOVES them.

My parents live up on the bench and so we have a clear view of the whole valley.  We can see fireworks for miles.  And the cool thing is, because we are so high up, we get a birds eye view of the show.  They are either eye level or lower, so it's a fun perspective that way.  (I tried to take pictures, but I couldn't really get them to turn out quite right so you'll have to settle for a stock image.)

I think we saw (heard!) fireworks nearly every day the month of July.  It actually became quite annoying.  We would put the baby down at about 8:30 and sure enough, come 9:30 or 10:00 he would be awake again because the booming of the fireworks had awaken him.

Surprisingly enough, they have fewer fireworks on the Fourth of July than other days.  It was pretty surprising to me to, but that's how it is here.  In Utah, every town has a festival throughout the summer, complete with a small fair, carnival rides, a rodeo and of course, fireworks.  In Pleasant Grove they have "Strawberry Days", American Fork has "Steel Days", Draper has "Draper Days" and so on.  Each celebration has a night (or two or three) of fireworks, and in Utah you are allowed to set off fireworks three days before and three days after each of these holidays so we really went a whole month with seeing them.  I'm pretty much over it now.

Provo seems to be the only city to celebrate the 4th, and they do it with the "Stadium of Fire" where they have a big concert in the football stadium, usually country, (this year was Kelly Clarkson) and top off the night with fireworks.  The problem is, that the best place to see the fireworks are in the stadium, so most people kind of go without a big fireworks show on the 4th.

What surprised me most was that July 4th seems to get downplayed in favor of July 24th.  What's that?  You don't know what July 24th is?  July 24th is Pioneer Day!  It's the day when Brigham Young first entered the Salt Lake valley with the Mormon Pioneers way back in 1847.  Pioneer Day is big here.  Many people get the day off work, (or take it off) and celebrate it pretty much the same way you would the Fourth of July... picnics, parades, waiving of American flags, BBQs and of course, fireworks.

I'm pretty convinced that if the Pioneers had entered the valley in November, we would celebrate with a Thanksgiving type feast and a Macey's Day parade.  Too bad they didn't enter in March or April.  The months from Christmas to Memorial Day are really lacking in good holidays and a long weekend.