Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Fun with Family

I have not managed to post all the fun pictures from our trip to Utah a few weeks ago. It was so fun to be with so much family for my niece's baptism. Six of my Seven siblings were able to be there. Since I missed seeing everyone in Seattle, this was the next best thing. Here is a huge group shot. Lots of people to try and get to look at the camera.
Here is a cute shot of Diana with her cousin Megan. Diana is a year older, but Megan is a foot taller. These girls are great friends.
Here are the five girl cousins. They are close in age and have the best time together. They had fun playing again after Seattle.
Then we tried to add my sister's two smaller girls in for an all girl shot. This picture just cracks me up. In defense of the small children, it was lunch time and they had just sat through a long meeting of the baptism. Still isn't this just a great shot.
Here is a second try. A little bit better. This is one of those times you give up trying to get people to look and smile and just take the shot to capture the fact that this is who was there that day.
Here is a rare picture of Jared. He kept turning his head, trying to avoid getting his picture taken. Finally several of us surrounded him and he had no where to hide. His cousin Susan is standing next to him. They are only two weeks apart in age.

Hey, trampoline girls, great group shot. This is my brother Sam. He lives is Seattle and helped take care of Diana last summer. She had so much fun playing guitar hero with him. And when they all went to the Aquarium, Sam was Diana's surrogate parent for the day. Thanks again Sam, for all you did to help her.
Here are Miles and Karianne, two very cute kids, well one kid and one adolescent.
Here is Tanner in a straight jacket that looks oddly like a swing.
My brother has a rabbit, and Diana and all the kids had fun petting it.
Here are my twin nephews, Taylor and Hunter.
Here is a happier shot of Ali, after lunch and a nap. Cute cheese, huh?
Here are my sister, brother-in-law, Ali, and Lizzie. Look how clean after bath time.
Here is Lizzie with her best Pipi Longstocking impression.

And yet another shot of Jared. This time with the laptop. Look how long his hair is getting.

Happy Baptism day and congratulations to Megan!

And here is a group casual pose. All the little girls love to tease Uncle Sam. He is a good sport to play along with them. We are so glad Sam was able to make it on a buddy pass at the last minute.

I'll Get by with a little Help from my Friends

" A friend is one to whom one may pour out all the contents of one's heart, chaff and grain together, knowing that the gentlest of hands will take and sift it, keep what is worth keeping and with a breath of kindness blow the rest away."- Arabian Proverb"

Since I cried out for support last week, I have been overwhelmed with the response of my friends. One brought me flowers, another a 3 pound bag of peanut M&Ms. Many of you have posted comments of love or e-mailed me personally. These notes mean more than you will ever know. It is amazing how much a simple word of encouragement can mean. It is like a ray of sunlight in the middle of the night. Other friends have called to chat and have checked up on me.

"A friend is like a good bra: hard to find, comfortable, supportive, always lifts you up, makes you look better, never lets you down or leaves you hanging, and always close to your heart." - Unknown

One friend was at a Missionary Not Open house in Utah. As a group of people were talking, she suddenly overheard that one of the guys plays on the BYU football team. Being the true friend that she is, she asked this young man to sign an autograph for her friend, namely me. She had him make it out to me personally and actually asked him if he had heard of me. I think it is a good sign that he had not. He is a third string wide receiver and I have not personally stalked him, yet. So good news, there have not been any public warnings given about me at any team meetings. You know it would go something like this "Beware of a crazy old lady with a picture of a turkey bone that looks like a "Y". And how awesome is it that my friends are now stalking BYU football players in my behalf. A sign of true friendship.

"A friend is someone who believes in you even when you have ceased to believe in yourself." - Unknown

I was especially grateful for one friend's advice that when you feel overwhelming grief, you should get down on your knees and pray thanking Heavenly Father for every single thing you can think of until the sadness leaves your heart. I could tell from her letter that she has done this personally and had it work for her. Some how there is such comfort in knowing that others have felt the way I do at this time before in their life.

"Friendship doubles our joy and divides our grief."
-Swedish Proverb

I still feel a bit silly for letting the mask of coping and competency fall from my face for a day. But having others understand what I am going through is also huge. How can others help to bear my burdens if I don't let them know I am struggling. I am feeling so much better about things this week. I got some needed R&R this weekend. And we are a week closer to getting some answers, so that is always good.

"Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art... It has no survival value; rather is one of those things that give value to survival."-"
-C. S. Lewis

Saturday, September 27, 2008

I Heart Elder Uchtdorf

Dear Elder Uchtdorf,

Thank you so much for speaking with me tonight. I appreciate the time you took giving me your words of compassion, comfort, and cheer. How did you know that was exactly what I needed to hear. Because of you, I will go on trying and working and most of all serving others. I even think that advice would be awesome and helpful to my son. I will look for ways he can help others as well. I wanted you to know what a difference you made, in case you couldn't tell.

Thanks again for being there for me,

Love, Sister Hammond

p.s. I can cook fried eggs also, and sometimes I burn my french bread, I feel a special bond with you now, but not in a scary, stalker kind of way, so don't worry.

So long Sucker (soccer)

Dear Rainbow Youth Soccer League,

This letter is to inform you of my resignation from your organization. I know that we have had a nine year relationship, but let's face it is over. Yes, I have threatend to leave you many times before, but this time is for real.

Never again will I be subjected to the season starting late and without uniforms. Nor will I have to deal with constant schedule changes. No more hassles with picture day happening or not happening. No more worries about where are soccer cleats, shin guards, or uniforms. No more Saturdays at the soccer field under blazing heat or piercing cold. Never again will I come home with heat exhaustion rendering me useless for the rest of the day. No more sun burns. Hauling a cooler full of ice, drinks, chips or fruit snacks, a thing of the past. Not to mention the stress of forgetting it is your turn for snack day and disappointing young children. That pressure gone too. No more 8:00 am games. That is just wrong. Saturdays are for sleeping in. No more coaching responsibilities. No snack schedules to deal with. No calling the whole team at 9:00 pm Friday night because Taste of Las Vegas is happening the next day and the game is cancelled. No more paying for silk screening the team shirts. No more planning end of season parties. No more trophies to buy.

The only thing I will miss about soccer is the great friends we made over the years. It is sad to not see the other parents every week. When you go through years together as a team, you tend to bond together.

So I bid a not so fond farewell to the soccer mom years of my life. Good bye, good riddance, and Adieu. I started out a young, enthusiastic mom cheering on her kid, and have ended up a bitter, cranky old woman. I think you may have stolen some of the best years of my life. I hope it was worth it. The jury is still out on that one, I think.

Sincerely, Pat Hammond

Friday, September 26, 2008

Here's my plan

It is tomorrow and the sun has come out, because hey it is Vegas. It is still in the high 90's. In reading yesterday's post it occurred to me that there are some things I can do, I can control. So here is a list of some things I will do to try to help heal my heart.

Buy myself some fresh beautiful flowers. When you feel dead inside, it is good to have live things around. And flowers don't talk, always a plus.

Burn some sweet smelling candles. You can try to trick your senses into feeling better.

Listen to good uplifting music. I have songs that can lift my spirits and help me feel hope if but for a few minutes. My Saviour shall supply my need, is one of my favorite calming, everything will be ok songs.

I will force myself to eat, whether I want to or not. You must put gas in the tank if you want to drive the car. I know this, I just forget sometimes.

I will forgive myself and be my own best friend. I have to admit to giving myself a pretty hard time lately. Hey me, lighten up! I am doing the best I can under ridiculous circumstances. Give me a break, OK. Eventually I will go back to my high functioning self.

To help defuse stress and depression I am going to try exercising. I have joined a gym for the first time in my life. I haven't actually gone and exercised yet, but Monday I meet with a personal trainer. I will tell her "what program would you suggest for a person who has the physical fitness of a slug." This will help fight my high cholesterol and help with that worry as well. I wonder how many points joining a gym takes off your cholesterol? What you say I have to actually go and exercise. Oh, OK. Also I wont be able to hear Jared at the gym, an added bonus.

I will keep up the basics of filling my spiritual bucket. You know the standard prayer and scripture study. I have just been called to teach gospel doctrine, so I will have a built in reason to do this. I was very sad to leave Young Women's but I am slowly starting to embrace this new phase of my life. Mandatory scripture reading is never a bad thing. I do feel as though I have a hole the size of a cannon in my bucket right now. This does concern me as to how will I feed the ward from my empty bucket. But perhaps the Lord knows more than me, and this will help to repair the hole in my bucket.

So there you have it. A plan of action. Now that I have written it down, it will have to happen, right. So I am making progress. Now you can all worry about me a little bit less. I would welcome any other ideas others have had in healing from loss

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Hanging by a thread

I want so desperately to have something funny, witty , and clever to write about. Perhaps I could make something up. Because honestly I have lost my smile and laughing place. And I don't know how to get it back again.

Instead I have a hole the size of a Mac truck in my heart where all my hope used to reside. It feels like someone has placed a large boulder on my chest making it hard to breathe. And my heart is racing a million miles a minute. Nothing I eat even tastes very good, so it seems like a waste of time. And why do my feet feel like they weigh about a 100 lbs each?

It reminds me of the line in Sleepless in Seattle. I think that Tom Hanks character describes what the pain is like best when he says "First I will breathe in, and then I will breathe out." It is like you have to make a conscious decision to go on living.

Little things like fighting through the system of getting my car to pass its smog inspection, seem like insurmountable tasks. Although truthfully I did experience a miracle when on the fourth try, it did pass the smog after getting a new battery which sucked away my time and money.

I suppose all this is just normal grieving stuff. Personally I hate grief, even good grief, Charlie Brown. The only part of grief I like is the denial stage. That part is good because you are still too numb to feel anything. I always say that denial is my favorite stage of grief. Probably not a good sign when you have a favorite stage of grief. Not so much a fan of the anger and pain part of grief. Takes so much energy.

I have a niece who twisted her knee and wrote about how painful it was to sit out of her dance class for just a few days. She felt like life was going on with out her. I can totally relate. It seems every where I look, I am reminded that Jared is missing out on things.

Like on Sundays when all his friends pass the sacrament, I used to feel secret happiness watching him fulfil his priesthood duty. And several of his friends made the high school soccer team. We had even considered that he might give football a try. It seems funny now, but as we drove to the hospital, he actually told me that he didn't want to play sports anymore. I think that was the pain talking, but maybe he was prophetic. He can't mow the lawn. He can't sit through school or seminary or church. He can't even put his socks on by himself. He can't carry a drink of water to where he wants to sit. Will he be able to drive? All these and so many more of these things run through my mind constantly.

We went to the doctor yesterday. A new x-ray shows that his hip is partially dislocated. This can only be fixed by surgery. So we are stopping physical therapy. Jared will be referred to another doctor who specializes in hips. Bottom line, more waiting and wondering what the future will bring.

In the mean time Jared and I are having so much fun together each day. You know the kind of fun where he asks me to help him every 5 minutes, and questions who I am talking to on the phone, and why and what am I talking about. The kind of fun where I hear this all day long: Please get me more water, please get my chair from the shower so I can poop, please take my chair back upstairs to the shower so I can stop smelling bad, Please cook me bacon, Please can I have my lactose pill, Please can you get me clean clothes, Please can you make me something to eat, Please can I have a turn on the lap top, Please can you lift my legs into the car, Please can you let me do it myself because you are hurting me, Please stop looking at me, Please stop talking to me, Please don't sing along to the radio, please take me to my 2 millionth doctor appointment. Yes it is just all kinds of fun 24/7 around here. And if he isn't telling me all these things in person, then he texts them to me.

Apparently even when a master is polite, slavery is still a bummer and not all it is cracked up to be. And perhaps that is one of my biggest griefs. I am suppose to be childless for about 5-6 hours a day. I have been robbed of my freedom and forced into slavery to an invalid child and his unknown future. It really bites, big time.

And then there is the part when I am suppose to get him to do things he doesn't want to do. Like his physical therapy exercises, like his school work on the computer, Like even getting ready to go to an appointment on time. It is just pretty much non stop frustrations, because let's face it there is not really any way I can force a 132 (oh yea, good news, he gained 5 pounds,) so 137 lb kid to do anything. Ultimately he has darn free agency and even though I feel completely responsible, I may not have a choice. Yea, nothing frustrating about that.

I realize that he is completely frustrated about the whole situation. This makes for irritability, and sadly I am the one around to experience most of this joyful behavior.

So pretty much both of us are going crazy. This week I am at the end of my rope and am thinking that one of us has got to die. I volunteer. Today I even spent some time trying to research buying a cemetery plot where my grandparents are buried. It is my new dream, that if I have to live in Vegas for the rest of my life, gosh darn, I will not be buried here. I want to be buried in the Fairview Cemetery in Cache Valley. I think it will be fairly inexpensive. But Jehoshaphat, the Fairview Cemetery does not seem to have a web site. How rude! How else am I suppose to make the plans for my demise? So I suppose I will have to go on living a while longer.

Like I said at the top, I want this blog to be all happiness, laughter, puppies, and sunshine, but sometimes that is just not the way it is. I still kind of remember that things will work out just fine in the end. If not in this life then in the next. Sometimes it just gets hard and we need to sit and cry for a while. So sorry you had to witness my falling apart in blog form. I will go back to being my cheerful happy self someday. For now I hope that you will still keep checking in to see when that day will be. If you enjoyed this melt down you might enjoy this one or maybe this one. Unless you are a faithful reader and never miss a post. In which case, could you please comment, because I am starting to feel like I am talking to myself, which is adding to my deduction that I am crazy. So help a girl out, if you can. Sorry to be so pathetic that I have to beg for comments. Nevermind I take it back.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Biggest Loser, Revisited

Diana lost her glasses. Yes the $300 pair that I purchased last June. Also the pair that got scratched in Seattle, accidentally, and so I paid $75 to have new lenses put in the frames. Because this is my life, she promptly lost them the very next week. This was the first week of September. She wore her old pair with the old prescription for a week, but the Bermuda Triangle at my house did not decide to give up its treasure. So I was forced to go to Wal Mart and get new frames for $40. And because I am pretty sure that $40 is cheaper than a night at the mental hospital, I even sprang for a second pair. This way instead of going crazy in the morning when I can't find her glasses, we can just pull out the other pair and go serenely on our way. Because you know that is how our mornings are, just pure peace and serenity.

Of course I had an ulterior motive in buying new glasses. I figured it was the one sure way to find the old ones. Murphy's Law and all that blah, blah, blah. So in theory Diana now has 4 pairs of glasses. Her old gold frames, her purple metal frames, and the two new inexpensive frames.

Here are one of the new pairs. And I also popped for a chain thing that she can wear around her neck like an old lady Liberian or something.

Here is another cute shot.

And I think this pair is my favorite.

And fate has spit on my plan, because the purple metal frames, still AWOL of course. Curses, but at least she has something else to wear in the mean time. Those other frames are probably gone for good.

And just to keep me from being bored this week, Jared lost his glasses last Saturday while I was taking a nap. I swear it is as if these kids think I have nothing better to do than follow them around and watch to see where they put their glasses down. After searching for about an hour each day, I finally found his tonight. Yes they were on the book shelf right next to his bed right where he could see them when he sleeps at night. Criminey. I admit I no longer want to have the finding gene. I was probably just delusional to begin with thinking that I actually could find things.

Yesterday I spent thirty minutes looking for my car keys before I found them in the bottom of my purse. Yes, I have definitely lost more than a couple pair of glasses.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Catchin' Some Air

Wow this girl has got some serious trampoline skills. Look how impressed the bystanders are. And what an awesome photographer my niece is who took this picture, Huh?

Math Humor

My brother snapped a shot of this shirt at the game. I think it is hilarious, how about you?

Sunday, September 21, 2008

See Pat High Five the Team

As if attending the coach's radio show, fireside, and game were not enough. There is more! The cherry on the top of the cake. The post game High-Five with the entire team. Woohoo! It doesn't get better than this. Last year was my first experience at this little piece of heaven.

With about six minutes to go in the game, my sister and I made our way down to the front row. We were swimming upstream against all those sissies who left the game early just to avoid traffic. Whatever, they obviously are not true fans. Thank goodness we went down early, because we were able to establish our position before all the little kids showed up. Here is the team leaving the field and making their way over to start the high fiving.

See how determined and excited these guys look! It is because they know they are just moments away from coming face to face with wonderful me, the wonder fan!

Here are the sad, disappointed, tail kicked UCLA team walking dejectedly towards the locker room. Hey guys, I am thrilled we stomped all over you, in a Christ-like way of course.

Players prepare to high five! Look how close I am to where the line starts! This was just random luckiness on my part. Perhaps I have some physic powers when it comes to BYU football. Having never been there before I didn't know that they would only go around half of the stadium.

Another shot, and look a security guard in a wheel chair. I am pretty sure I could beat her out. But maybe her motorized scooter is faster than I think. That would seem normal, huh, crazed fan Pat running across the field with security in a motorized wheelchair in pursuit.

Here is Jan Jorgenson, who had an amazing defensive game. He was interviewed on the field, but after his interview, he still went down the line.Here is a shot my brother took of my sister and me in all our glory. It does take special skill and talent to celebrate and cheer on the team while taking pictures. I think I managed to get some great shots even though digital cameras are slow in my opinion.

Here is a shot where I managed to cut the guy's head off. Sorry. But it is a nice close up of his number, don't ya think.

This is a nice shot of Fui Vakapuna. He is fun to watch run and block for Harvey Unga. And he was very kind to take the time to sign a football for a kid next to me.

Here is another shot of us. Oh dear, the poor kid next to me does seem to be struggling to reach the players hands. I never even noticed it.Here is a shot of them after they went by us. Pretty cool, huh? Just humor me and nod your head yes, K.And finally a shot of my new best friend/restraining order filer Dennis Pitta. I'm pretty sure he will only have nightmares about me for a couple of days.

So that is it. My football obsession will have to be long distance for the rest of the season. How sad, but perhaps safer to not risk a talking to from a judge.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Popcorn Popping

I found this entertinaing, although the sun was glaringin my eyes and I wasn't quite sure what I was shooting.

See Pat Watch Football

Finally, finally I am getting my post done from the BYU game last weekend. I know you have all been waiting on the edge of your seats, biting your fingernails in total suspense. Because there is just nothing more fun than watching me watch a football game, right? So here after much delay is my Cougarmentary.First you have to see me walking into the stadium. See the look of rapt anticipation and excitement on my face? Well if I still wasn't fighting that darn cold I could have made a better excited face. Notice the majestic scenery in the background, oh and the mountains also. They are pretty amazing as well.
Next is the shot of me just after I entered the gate. I am holding my ticket and have brought my stadium chair for comfortable viewing. I also coughed up the $3 for my very own program. And we all got cool blue towels that we could wave when something exciting happened.

Here is a lovely shot of our group complements of my brother who is a season ticket holder and was sitting in the section next to us. He called me on my phone and told me to have everyone stand up and wave. This took several tries to coordinate, but turned out pretty well. You can see how we were sitting on the very top row. I practically had a heart attack while walking up to my seat. And talk about the nose bleed section. But we could see the field so that is what matters most.
To start the game Via Sikahema ran the flag out onto the field. Marion played football against him in high school. We watched and cheered for him when he played at BYU while we were in school. It was so amazing to be at the game in person. I loved all of it.

Here I am modeling my lovely official BYU t-shirt. You can get a feel for just how high up we were. Notice the guy with a shirt on his head behind me. It was ridiculously hot and there was no shade. They won't even allow you to bring in an umbrella, some nonsense about it being a weapon. Anyway, if you have not already fallen asleep from boredom, you might be observant enough to notice that I am wearing a white t-shirt in some of these pictures. Being a dessert rat I actually brought a white t-shirt with me. So in my best flash dance imitation, I changed my dark heat sucking shirt for my white reflecting one. Hee, Hee, and no even noticed.
To help fight the heat, I went out and purchased a yummy snow cone. Thanks Amidey for getting one first and putting the idea in my head. I chose blue raspberry and tiger blood flavorings. Here is a picture of my tongue to see what color it is. Not really very impressive.
This is a shot of the big screen with Cosmo standing on top of the Spencer W. Kimball tower. And of course nice score, huh?

Here is a shot of the team on the field. I took this when I was down closer while getting my snow cone.
"I'll be there to pick up my psycho, crazy fan award in just a minute."

Here is the line of security people whose job it is to keep people like me off the field. I think I could take them? What do you think? Actually I think this would be a great job for me to have. Yes, my dream job--security person at Lavel Edwards Stadium. Because how awesome would that be to stalk the football team while being paid to do it.
All in all it was a heck of a day for football. BYU dominated and basically smashed UCLA like a bug. It was a joy to watch. Keep it up Cougars. You know I'll be cheering, just listen and you will hear me screaming from Vegas.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Death by Bureaucracy

As opposed to death by poisoning or death by gunshot. Death by bureaucracy should be particularly drawn out and painful. I'll be happy to let you know.

The dictionary defines bureaucracy as follows:

1.government by many bureaus, administrators, and petty officials.

2.the body of officials and administrators, esp. of a government or government department.

3.excessive multiplication of, and concentration of power in, administrative bureaus or administrators.

4. administration characterized by excessive red tape and routine.

I love the petty official part of the definition. Do you suppose that is on the job application for government officials? Do you posses the skill to be petty? Also are able to thrive in an environment where nothing makes sense? Then great you are hired.

I have added my own definition as well:

5. A system developed to suck away people's life source and will to live until all that is left is a crumpled shell of a human being.

So if not actually dead, possessing many of the same characteristics such as lifelessness and loss of color. And if bureaucracy doesn't literally kill me, it may cause me to pull all my hair out leaving me bald and unable to show my face in public. Hence rendering me dead to all who know me.

Yesterday bureaucracy kicked my can to Timbuktu and back again. Here are just a few of the brick walls I have been hitting me head against lately.

My car needs to be smogged.

I was suppose to register it last Friday.

When my car was tested, it did not pass the test.

Not because it is emitting harmful toxic waste into the atmosphere, no because the computer in the car does not have enough information.

Somehow it had been reset to zero and so that makes the government think that it has been tampered with.

It is a 2005 for crying out loud, how is it not passing the test?

The guy helping me who looked like he just got out of jail, wasn't really all that helpful or clear about what I should do about the problem.

I went to my mechanic. Yeah, they weren't really sure what to do about it either.

So I was able to attend the joyful DMV in person and get an extension.

But I still am not really sure what to do. Maybe I could give up driving. That would go well with my plan to hide in a corner and ignore all my responsibilities.

Trent does not want to take Zoology.

A new regulation wants kids to have 3 science credits for something called the 21st century diploma,

Trent has 2.5 science credits,

You can graduate with a standard diploma with 2 science credits,

The school refused to drop him from Zoology until he registered in an independent study science class,

Trent's mother has been otherwise occupied with things like doctor appointments, grief over son's permanent disability, being out of town, and the worst head cold known to man.

Trent has been in to talk with the counselor about this several times

Trent has not attended the class even once in four weeks, because in his mind he has already dropped it,

Yesterday was the last day to officially drop the class, otherwise he would just get a "F" on his transcript.

After a twenty minute conversation with the counselor where things like "rules are rules" "that's just the way it is", "lump it or leave it" were bandied about, I was force to put my hands around the counselors throat. Seriously I did it, in a joking way more or less of course, but in my mind I was more not so much less.

After this attempt on the counselors life, I asked about the standard diploma

She then informed me that there is the option of waiving the 21st century requirement.

After I recovered from my seizure, I said for sure we were interested in that option.

She informed me that they can not find the form that needs to be filled out to waive the requirement.

Of course not.

This is the letter I sent to school with Trent yesterday:

September 18, 2008

To Whom It May Concern:

I give my permission for Trenton Hammond to waive the 21st Century science requirement. I understand that he will graduate with only 2 science credits. When the form to officially waive this requirement is found, I will be happy to fill it out.
In the mean time, please drop him from Zoology.
If you have any questions please contact me at 555-5555.

Patricia Hammond

See not even a death threat or anything.

My doctor leaves an ominous message on my answering machine

After a fun filled morning spent taking Jared to various appointments, I returned to my home for sanctuary.

I was met with a flashing message light on my phone.

The message was my doctor, informing me that she needed to talk to me about my blood work from the previous day.

She didn't say what was wrong, but conveyed that it was a serious matter and would I please call back and leave a number she could contact me with that day.

I called back, left the number and asked if the receptionist could tell me the results.

No sirree! The doctor is the only one who can give out results over the phone.

Well isn't that special.

So I had a fun filled afternoon of suspense and worry where I played through scenarios of my impending death.

Finally she got a hold of me, and told me that my Triglyceride cholesterol number went from a normal, healthy 115 last year to 375 this year. I don't even know what to think about this.

I really can not pin point how my diet is that different this year than last. One thing is that I did eat a whole bag of cheese curds the day before the test. Perhaps that skewed the test, but really would it be that much off. I kind of doubt it.

This month I will watch what I eat and take the test again. Maybe it is a mistake. That seems like an awfully big jump.

Of course the whole answer to much of what is wrong in my life would be to exercise. It is too bad driving ill tempered, teenage boys to doctor appointments doesn't count as exercise.

Thanks to all of you for listening to me whine and complain. When I do experience my nervous breakdown, I will try to get a video of it, K.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Hard to blog in a brain fog...

I have all kinds of fun things to post about, namely all the fun I have had with family and the extraordinary football game. Rest assured I took many pictures and a post the size of a novel is up coming sometime this week. It might be good to spread my BYU mania out over a week.

As I mentioned earlier, I have come down with a terrible cold since being in Utah. I am pretty sure I brought it here with me, and I feel terrible that I have infested my brother's house. At least it is not the Ebola virus, but that hardly makes me feel any better. In the mean time I keep sleeping away precious visiting time and it is most exasperating. Curse my weak immune system. Also cold medicine has rendered me unable to think of what to say. Sorry if any of my past posts seemed inconherent.

So even though attending my football activities was incentive enough to get up off my sick bed, I feel somewhat robbed. Somehow I think the past two days would have been more fun had my head not felt like it was the size and weight of a watermelon. And sneezing and couching at times is not the most fun either. Still I feel very blessed that I was able to attend. Who knows when that will happen again.

Hopefully I will feel back to normal tomorrow.

Friday, September 12, 2008

More Stalking Pictures

I was able to attend the BYU football fireside, this evening. Despite the fact that my head feels like it is the size and weight of a watermelon. I spent all day laying bed and pretty much being sick and miserable. Which come to find out is worse that being well and miserable. But I knew I would be sad if I did not take advantage of a great stalking opportunity. The fireside was very good with some great words to live by and lots of encouragement to be a disciple of Christ. So here I am with Dennis Pitta, who if you did not know is number one in total yards reception in the county. He has gained 361 yards in just two games. Pretty awesome, huh? He is 6'5" which you can see in this picture.

This is a picture of me with Max Hall, the BYU quarterback. Also in the picture is my nephew Nathan who I am training in my scary stalker skills, and next to Max is his grandfather Wilford White. Wilford White's son Danny was the quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys back in the day. Also Wilford White used to live just a couple of houses down the block from Marion's parents. So that was kind of cool. There was a nice guy we met at the fireside named Bro. Williamson, who also knows my Uncle Neal and knew Wilford White and so he helped hook me up for the picture.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

P.S. to my stalking

I forgot to tell a great detail from last night due to my kids bugging me for the laptop. Darn laptop hoggers.

So when I went up to get Coach Mendenhall to sign my picture, I also tortured him with looking at my scrapbook. Because I am pretty much like a grandma with pictures of her grand kids when it comes to my BYU scrapbook. And really you don't have a choice to look or not, no free agency. I bore anyone I can get to admire my stalking skills. (It will be a lifelong sorrow of mine that I did not ask the guy sitting next to me to snap a picture of me at my stalking best. Oh well life is full of disappointments, I suppose.)

Any ways, I showed Coach Mendenhall my coolio picture of the turkey bone. I told him all about how once I found that bone shaped like the "Y" I knew it was a sign that we would beat Utah that Saturday. And I also shared with him how I held the bone for luck and jumped up and down on the couch screaming at the television during much of the game. Because we all know that has much to do with the outcome, and I am willing to do all I can to help the cause of my team even if it means I am horse the next day. I mean my voice is gone, not that you can saddle me up and feed me hay.

I figured he might look at me like I was crazy, and rightly so, but do know what? He actually told me that I should find another bone this year to ensure another victory. How cool is that? Coach Mendenhall and I shared a moment. Oh my gracious. I am in hog heaven.

So I just had to share this exciting and entertaining story with all of you. Thank you for listening, you may all stand in awe of my stalking talents.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Successful Stalking Situation

Last night I another quality opportunity to hone my stalking skills. I often read a blog on KSL radio that talks about BYU football. Often I have read about the Bronco Mendenhall Show that happens every Wednesday night at Ken Graff Ford dealership. But am always stuck in Las Vegas and so I can never attend such events. Yesterday morning I was reading about it happening last night and it occurred to me that "Hey I could actually go to this one because I am in Utah." So off I went with my scrapbook in tow and wearing my cool BYU shirt. Because we all know that the proper apparel is essential for successful stalking. One must look the part you know.

I really wasn't sure what this thing would be all about. It turns out that we got to sit and watch the show being broadcast on the radio. This was not as exciting as I might have hoped, but it was fun to see how it worked and see these people who I listen to every week.

Here is a shot of the broadcast. Tip for stalking: sit on the front row. So in case you are not a BYU obsessed freak like me I will tell you who is in this picture. The guy behind the laptop is Greg Wrubell, next to him is Mark Lyons, and at the end the always impressive Bronco Mendenhall.
Greg and Mark are the broadcasters who call all the BYU games. I listen to them all the time and this was a pretty big deal to a geek like me to see them in person. Here is a nice action shot of Bronco explaining last week's game.
During each commercial break people would go up to Bronco and get his autograph. After watching for several breaks I decided that I should get my picture with Bronco autographed. So the line consisted of 9 and 10 year old boys, 20 and 30 year old boys, and a 43 year old lady. Yea nothing odd/strange/weird about that, now is there?
Here is the picture that he autographed for me. Pretty cool, huh?

And last but certainly not least, here I am with the radio personalities. So it pretty much filled my expectations and then some. Now I have new things to put in my stalker scrapbook.