Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

21
May

Biking to Work

   Posted by: Garrett

Tom Johnson over at IdRatherBeWriting.com inspired me to try biking to work (http://idratherbewriting.com/2012/04/11/finally-biking-to-work/).

It has been a bit of an adventure, but I’m really liking it. I started out using my (almost) 20 year old mountain bike. And, although it is only about 10 miles for me to get to work, it is uphill both ways 😉

Actually it is mostly downhill on the way to work and mostly uphill on the way home, especially the last big hill before I get to my house.

It took me about 1 hour and 15 minutes the first day (each way), which is not too bad. I was encouraged. Then, on the second day, about 3 miles from work, I got a flat – and I had not packed a spare or even a pump! Not smart, I know. So, I got to walk the bike all the way there (minus a mile or so since I could drop it off at my sister-in-law’s house – thanks Kristen!). I also had to be picked up that evening.

The third time, things went pretty smoothly, I got to work in about an hour, but coming home I had a head wind and it took me almost 2 hours. Ouch!

But, as a present for my anniversary, we got me a brand new road bike, all composite, nice components, and all the stuff to go with it (biking clothes and clip in shoes and tire repair kits). So now we can go biking together – especially to the Ulcer at the beginning of August (100 miles around Utah Lake). I’m excited but nervous. That is a looooooooooonnnnnnng way to bike.

But, this morning it was great to ride the new bike to work and how easy it was to pedal and everything. I was a little scared of the speed so it took me just under an hour, but I expect things to pick up as I get in better shape and my fear is suppressed with experience.

I’m so glad I can finally do this because I love it already!

4
Sep

Fried Green Tomatoes

   Posted by: Garrett

Made fried green tomatoes for the first time ever today. Also first time ever eating them. I think they’re an acquired taste – I don’t think I’m quite to the acquired part yet. But they weren’t all bad – just different than I expected.

They were a good use of all the tomatoes growing in my garden though. Need to get stuff ready so I can make Grandma’s tomato juice/sauce now. I can’t wait to have spaghetti with it!

25
Feb

Down the Toilet

   Posted by: Garrett Tags:

It’s been a rough day. I am still not feeling well (I worked from home today), even after a good nap.

I haven’t gotten nearly anything done (as opposed to yesterday when I was just starting to feel sick).

And to top it off, I just spent an hour trying to unclog a toilet.

Most of that time was spent getting wet as I tried to use a plunger – all to no avail.

I finally pulled out the big guns – a toilet auger. Those are not the easiest things to use when you try to do it by yourself. It is not a good idea to do that either because I scratched up the porcelain pretty good. Heidi came home and helped and we finally got it unclogged. And now maybe we can get a toilet that doesn’t get clogged every other day.

16
Feb

Cub Scout Family Freeze

   Posted by: Garrett

Earlier this year (actually it was like December 29th), I was asked to chair the committee that would put on this winter family event. I was nervous and even a bit scared at first, but I was so thankful when I’d call people and they said that they would be willing to help out. Yay me!

I was able to assemble a group of 15 or so people who are totally awesome and great leaders. They all did an awesome job. The families and kids seemed to all have a fantastic time. We had sledding runs, cardboard and duct tape sled building, snow sculptures and snow shoeing, snow bowling, and great food. We had prizes and patches for all the kids (except some kids took more than they should have, as well as some of the staff gifts – but they were excited and probably didn’t do it on purpose).

Being on this committee also helped me get back into helping my oldest son (8) work on his Rank Advancements. We sat down and marked off lots of things the day after Family Freeze.

I am contemplating doing it again next year. If we did it, we’d probably have 4 sessions spread out over 2 days so that we could get the best bang for our setting-up-buck.

There is much I would do better/differently next year if I do decide to help out.

But, one of the best things for me is that I’ve been contemplating about what things I am truly passionate about. I was having trouble coming up with anything. But, then, how could I forget about scouting? I am definitely passionate about it. If I could make a living with it (or if I was independently wealthy), I would definitely love going into work at the council office (as a District Executive or something) every day.

26
Oct

H1N1 and Party Lines

   Posted by: Garrett

I know, a weird title. But they do go together.

I was talking with my mom recently about our youngest, who had H1N1 last week (he’s much better now, thanks!).

My parents live in California, where the H1N1 stories in the news are fairly common and tend to highlight cases that seem to be people who are not in the “high-risk” groups, providing details about this pandemic. While, here in Utah, I really don’t hear very much on the news, and the stories tend to be about ways to stay healthy and about how this is just another flu and the death rate is as expected.

So, while we weren’t too worried, I’m sure my mom was kind of freaking out.

It got me thinking about why a Democratic state would focus on the negatives and a Republican state would be more optimistic. (This is where the “party” lines comes in). After all, I am a fairly optimistic person.

I’m not so sure this has to do with pessimism versus optimism as a nature of certain parties, though. While some may argue this, I think it goes deeper, into the world view of those in each party.

Democrats tend to be more focused on the poor, the downtrodden, the under-represented. Republicans tend to be more focused on free markets and improving from the top, keeping government out of our lives. These are simplistic definitions, obviously, but I feel they are useful here, if not completely black-and-white.

In California, the focus seems to be on these suffering people and how bad this is, how we need help to fix the problem. In Utah, the focus seems to be on how we can handle this problem ourselves and reassuring us that we can do it.

In some ways I think these world views tie in with how people take on the “global warming” issue, even. From the, in my opinion, exaggerated sky-is-falling outcries on the left, to the nothing-to-fear-but-fear-itself, we-are-not-the-cause anti-response of the far right. The answer here, and for H1N1, is somewhere in the middle – a complex, problematic issue that is not easily solvable, nor should it be ignored.

5
Oct

Sunday

   Posted by: Garrett Tags: , ,

Today is the semi-annual conference for the LDS church. My family and I are watching it on tv. It is nice to live in Utah and to be able to stay in my pajamas all day while listening to our wonderful and inspiring leaders.

It is not easy to keep four kids quiet for 2 hours, though. To be fair, it is mostly the youngest two. Especially Bubba (he’s 4).