Tuesday, October 13, 2009

New House

OK...So we didn't get the first house and we (me especially) got over it and kept up the process. We looked at many houses in good areas but nothing seemed to fit us. It either had great bedrooms and no space anywhere else, or there was no yard area. Last week our credit score finally moved above the magical number and our mortgage broker advised us to find a house. We did and made an offer.


The property is bank owned and they had already accepted an offer of $250,000 but took so long to accept the offer that the buyers bought another house...supposedly the bank is taking the house to auction in November. We hope they accept our offer and we can move in by Thanksgiving.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Saturday Morning

We were hoping to be in our own house by now...things went wrong. We started the process in April and May of this year thinking that by the time school started we would be in and going. We found a house we liked, made an offer that was acepted, had the house inspected and appraised. Everything seemed to be going well. However, because of a 610 credit score, our mortgage wouldn't come thru and at the end of July a cash offer for the house we wanted came to the seller and we were out. The credit score would not come up and we are still in the same situtation. Our real estate agent and mortgage broker are sticking with us and hopefully soon we can get the process going again soon. We just do what we can do.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Football is Almost Here - Pittsburgh Haters

I am and always have been a lover of the Pittsburgh Steelers. I was born outside of Pittsburgh, near Johnstown, PA. I can remember early in life hearing about the team and watching my parents quietly root for them on Sundays. Of course in the 1960s there wasn't much chance to watch them on the West coast if they didn't play a local team. Then the 1970s rolled in and their new Quarterback and defense stepped up and started winning games. And four Super Bowls. The 1980s brought the realization that the team was mortal when they could make the playoffs but didn't get back to the Super Bowl. The 1990s showed they still were contenders and even once they made it back to the Super Bowl, only to lose to a great defense in the (gulp!) Dallas Cowboys. But then the 2000s came along and they have won two more Super Bowl rings and are still going strong. I get why people can hate them, although that is a pretty strong word. Hate is usually associated with evil, I prefer the word 'dislike' or maybe 'can't stand'. Those tend to make more sense since the Steelers are not associated with Lucifer (some seem to think the Rooneys made a deal with the devil, though). Terrell Suggs of the Baltimore Ravens, seems to agree with the rest of the haters with his t-shirt. I can understand Suggs' dislike because at least twice a year (sometimes thrice) he has to chase down the Steelers ball carriers. And sometimes he doesn't get the chance to win. Oh well...such is life. Hehehehe!

Sunday, April 5, 2009


Both Melissa and Jaxon are celebrating birthdays this week. Also this week, Mr. Hardy, Jaxon's 4th grade teacher is celebrating his birthday. To have the children enjoy this as well, he invited all of his students to the movie "Monsters vs. Aliens" on Saturday. We thought it was a great thing and took Jaxon and even bought tickets to see it ourselves. We showed up just before Mr. Hardy and were able to talk a little to him. He was excited to share this with his students and his young daughter. We told him that we would try to save seats for the kids.

It is amazing how rude some people can be when they are in public. I myself have been that rude person. However, when somebody says they are saving some seats for a group of children at a children's movie, why would you give them a hard time. But some people think they are better than everybody else and eventually the two rows of seats that we had tried to save were impinged upon by rude people. By the time Mr. Hardy came in, he had to find a seat up at the top of the theater and very few of the children got to sit together. All because rude people have to have their way.

I think that all of us really enjoyed the movie and I really want Mr. Hardy to know how much we enjoyed coming out to the movie to celebrate his birthday with him.

Thursday, April 2, 2009


When you are going thru high school, anything you participate in after school is extracurricular. After you grow up, anything after work should be called the same. If that is true, we adults should get varsity letters every year. Last year in Cub Scouts, the year before was photography.

For my varsity letter this year, I am going for Fly Fishing. I signed up for a community education class. I am hoping to learn and also to take the boys and then learn more. This week we learned casting. I borrowed my dad's rod and was trying to learn the technique and doing what I thought was a good job. One of the instructor's helpers came up at the end of the class and asked to try the rod. He seemed to be enjoying it and talking at the same time. He mentioned that he would not use the rod...not because it was a bad rod, but because the rod could be worth quite a bit of money and if it was broken during use, I would be out a good rod and would not have the ability to replace it because it had no warranty. Wow! I was not expecting that.

So now I have to buy a new rod, hopefully one that can be replaced if broken, because using Murphy's Law, there are two types of fly rods...broken ones and ones going to be broken.

The class has four more lessons and three fishing trips. I am going to enjoy that so much. And then I am going to introduce it to the boys. I am really looking forward to my new extracurricular activity.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Compensation Pt. II

To go along with the re-evaluation of my service connected disability, I needed to get my asthma under control. Just trying to set up a doctor's appointment at the VA takes an act of Congress and yesterday was my appointment set up over 2 weeks ago. My appointment was for 9:15 am and I left work at 8:30 to arrive in time as Foothill Blvd is quite full of people at that time. I made it to the clinic at 9:00 and by 9:15 I was seeing the nurse for measuring my vitals. That was all taken care of in a rapid fashion and by 9:30 I was sitting the the room waiting for the visit from the physician.

Little did I know that for the next 4 hours I would be the victim of government control. I waited for almost an hour for the physician and then had to give her my complete history, and because my file wasn't in the computer, she even asked me to recal details from 20+ years ago that I could not remember. I mean, who remembers whether they were suffering from night sweats or rashes when Ronald Reagan was president. After she was done grilling and poking and listening, she brought in her attending as she was only a resident, and he proceeded to inform me of all of the things that could be wrong with me that further testing could either eliminate or confirm.

After filling out the requests for perscriptions, sleep tests, and pulmonary function tests, they were finally done and sent me on my way with instructions to:

1) Set a follow up appointment
2) Set an appointment with a Primary Care Physician
3) Get a chest x-ray
4) Pick up medication

So in that order, I set off for my tasks. The follow up appointment was easy as I just stopped by the desk on the way out. The PCP appointment was a little more difficult as I had to phone in the request and the scheduler hung up on me before I could get the appointment, but I called again and the next lady helped me just fine. The chest x-ray, again wasn't difficult, but took about 20 minutes of waiting. Then the house fell in.

The medications are a completely different world. Once the physician inputs the prescriptions, a pharmacist has to approve them before they can be distributed at the pharmacy. You have to take a number and when I took mine, twenty people were in front of me. Please remember that this is a VA hospital and I love the men and women of the military, but old veterans take a lot of medicine and it took almost 45 minutes before I got my turn with the pharmacist. As he was reviewing the scripts, he discovered a problem with two of the three. I had to hunt down my doctor and ask her to contact the pharmacist so that he could discuss the problems. I returned as they were conversing on the phone. She agreed to make the changes but it took another 10 minutes for that to happen. After the pharmacist approved the changes, it took almost another 30 minutes for the pharmacy to get the scripts ready and me to pick them up.

All of the time I am waiting and being poked and prodded, my boss is texting me about my return to work. I can only move as fast as the government does.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Over the weekend I had two different experiences with movies.

On Friday, Melissa and I went to see Watchmen...I was so disappointed. The story was garbage, the acting was horrible (except Jackie Earle Haley) and Dr. Manhattan's large penis was not what I wanted to see on the screen. Everytime the good doctor was on the screen, there was the "Please don't pan below his waist" feeling and then of course they did. That was $17 and two and a half hours that we can never reclaim. It was so bad that a fellow patron behind us while exiting the theater said, "We would have been better off seeing a chick flick," and I am in total agreement.

On Saturday, Melissa's mother and sisters planned a viewing of Twilight. Jaxon and Logan wanted to see Grandma and Bradan so I and they accompanied Melissa to Orem. Bradan was with his dad, so I took the boys to see a movie. They of course wanted to see different movies. Logan wanted Mall Cop and Jaxon wanted Race to Witch Mountain. I told them that we would see the next movie playing when we got to the theater. We missed Mall Cop by 20 minutes, poor Logan. We got the tickets and went to see Witch Mountain and guess what...It was good. The boys loved it, and I enjoyed watching them enjoy it. When it was over we had mall food for dinner and then picked up Melissa (they were just finishing) and headed home. Logan was wasted and soon fell asleep, but Jaxon spent the next hour expounding on the explosions, car chases, slot machines and trains in the movie. His one request is that when the movie comes out on DVD we get it, but "it has to be on Blue Ray."

I am glad that we have the opportunity for good and bad choices. Choosing the bad sometimes always makes choosing the good that much better. I love to watch the world through the eyes of my children. They spend so little time in that stage that I am glad that I can live it sometimes.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Cub Scout Extracurricular Activities

Everybody knows about the Pinewood Derby that Cub Scouts participate in. But how many know of the Space Derby? Last night our pack had their Space Derby. Because I have two boys of Cub Scout age, we had two rockets to build. Thank goodness for a grandpa who doesn't mind helping out a little bit with this kind of thing, and who happens to have tools. We were able to get the rockets shaved and sanded, but then we had quite a few cold days and snowstorms that didn't permit the spray painting of the rockets. This didn't get accomplished until Monday this week. Tuesday, Daddy had to bring the rockets to work with him so that all of the knife work could get done (you know...the fins and the holder). Daddy actually got a co-worker to draw some flames on the ships so that the boys could have something other than just plain gold or black rockets. By the time Daddy left work, the knife stuff was completed and Grandpa had the Super Glue waiting to glue all the fins in place. When we got to the Pack Meeting, we still had to assemble the propellers with the rubber bands and all of thier accessories. WHEW! The races finally started and each of the rockets won at least one of their heats. The boys were happy with their rockets and I am glad I don't have to do that again for at least another year, then it is the Raingutter Regatta. Oooh boy!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Lost Day

I wanted to spend some time with the family this weekend and thought that the RV Show at the South Towne Expo Center might be fun. Ashton had plans, so it would only be Melissa, the boys and me. We decided to ride the Front Runner and then the Trax to get to the expo center. We got a late start because of running errands and didn't catch Front Runner until 1:30 pm. Due to the travel time it was 3:00 pm by the time we got to the show and it was CROWDED! The wait to get into some of the motorhomes and trailers was terrible. We lost the boys every once in a while just to make things interesting. Then it turns out that so many of the vehicles look alike and when you see one, you've seen them all. We decided to get dinner down there and the Ruby River Steakhouse was so slow that we had to leave without getting a chance to eat our dinner. We asked for take out boxes and they were even slow getting them and getting change from our paying the check. We walked as fast as we could to catch the Trax and missed it. We had to wait for the next one, only to get aboard an already crowded train. It turns out the Utah Jazz were playing and everybody was headed to Energy Solutions Arena for the game. I ended up standing the entire way to the arena protecting Jaxon on a seat in a separate from Melissa and Logan. We finally get to the Central Station and then the Front Runner still hasn't arrived and we have to wait 5 minutes. Then another 20 minutes before it left the station. Another 30 minutes and we were home...finally. We got home at 8:00 pm. Six and a half hours. Lost Day!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Federal Laws

So I bought a game and guitar for our Rock Band 2 on our Playstation3. The guitar it turns out would not work on the PS3 because it was made for PS2 only. The game I bought was the 80s Rock version of Guitar Hero also for the PS2. Guess what? It wouldn't work with the guitar from Rock Band 2. Geez! I took them both back to Target and approached the front desk. Since the guitar wasn't opened, they would refund the money I paid for it. The game though, because I had opened it to try it with our guitar, they could only exchange for the same title. WHAT? Oh yeah, Federal Copyright Laws prohibit them from even exchanging the game for a different title, let alone refunding the money. What a crock! Whose idea was this? It makes a person want not to shop anywhere for anything.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


When I was discharged from the USN in 1986, it was an honorable discharge under medical conditions. I contracted asthma while on active duty and could not maintain combat rediness. Thus, the military found a way to cut the budget by getting me out of service. After the discharge, I was evaluated by the Veteran's Administration and was declared 10% disabled and was awarded disability compensation. When discharged, I was given a severance package and that money had to be collected back, so it took 15 years for the Veteran's Administration to collect my severance back with my monthly check. Well, in November, I decided that I had enough of shortness of breath and went to the Disabled American Veterans Association and asked for help in getting re-evaluated. I had an appointment before Christmas and then one after for evaluation purposes. Today I received notice that they increased my disability award to 30% compensation. WhooooHoooo! With that size of award, there will be more benefits available and I will pursue every one of them because I deserve them.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Life Continues

Yesterday was a day for doctor appointments. Melissa had a root canal done at eight in the morning. She was all worked up on Sunday about it. Turns out it wasn't as bad as she thought it would be. Some soreness and a little sleepy after taking medication. Then in the afternoon, my dad had eye surgery to remove a cataract in his right eye. He is supposed to be re-evaluated today, but Mom says that he could see a little out of the eyepatch that he was wearing last night. I spent the time in-between watching "Casino Royale" and "Star Wars: A New Hope" with Jaxon and Logan. Ashton had his own thing he was doing. Life continues, no matter what we try to do to stop it.

Saturday, February 14, 2009


What a shame! There are two very inventive fellows at Piedmont High School in California that instituted a new way to set up an offense in football that allowed all members of the offense to be eligible for a pass. They called it A-11. Just this week the higher ups in High School football rules determined that their offense was illegal and outlawed the A-11 offense. It is a pity that the creative genius is being stifled. These guys wanted to help their students and instead they pissed off others who complained and got their way. Bunch of crap! See this Yahoo! article about it.



OK...In Utah winter has snow. But overnight we had lots and now I am getting sick of it. When will it stop. We stay inside and get on each other nerves. The boys fight over the Playstation 3 or the computer. Then, to make matters worse, we slept in and forgot to give the two oldest their medication. Now they have ADHD issues on a snowy day. Just more things to deal with.