Saturday, July 31, 2010

So it's not a unicorn - a Joy post

I've always liked horses. From afar anyway. Used to draw them, like the unicorns. I thought it might be nice to ride a horse someday. Last year when I got some birthday money from Grammy, I couldn't think of anything I wanted to do more than get some horse riding lessons. That's the first time it ever happened. (Thank you, Grammy!) So I planned on it.

I didn't get around to it until July. I'm doing English style riding. It was kind of weird the first time, though I wasn't scared of the horse. Second time was okay - learning a little bit more. The third time I started feeling a little bit comfortable riding. That's good.

When I get there, I groom the horse: I brush its face and legs with the soft brush, and with the coarse brush I brush its mane and its back and its tummy and its tail; then I have to pick and brush its feet (this picture) - it only has shoes in the front, so I don't pick the feet that don't have shoes, but I brush all of them - you only pick around the shoe and not the inside of the foot (called the frog); and then I put on the saddle and my helmet; and then we put on its bridle - I put the bridle on on my own for the first time. And then I ride the horse. I lead it out, walking on its left side, holding the reins with my right hand because all their horses are trained as if people are right handed. And then I ride the horse. And I bring it back and groom the horse again, clean up after it if it poops (which she hasn't let me do yet: if he pees you have to bleach it and all this kind of stuff). And then I give him treats! While I'm grooming him the second time, sometimes he sniffs at me cause he expects to find a treat, but I don't give it to him until after I'm done grooming him.

The biggest problem I had last time I rode, my feet kept trying to go farther into the stirrups and you're supposed to keep the balls of your feet on the stirrups so your heels can sink down as far as possible - helps with balance.

I'm learning that you have to look where you want to go, not at the ground or at the horse - keeping my arms at an obtuse angle. And I'm kind of excited that next time I will get to ride a different horse - not the gentlest one.

After having horse riding lessons three times, I would counsel anyone who has horse riding lessons to not skip a week. It's been going well. It's interesting: it's not all dreamy and floaty like I thought it would be; it's some hard work. And that's the reason you shouldn't skip any lessons because every week you gain some more muscle. I could see progress between my second and third lessons because I hadn't skipped a week, and didn't between my first and second because I had to skip one. When I tried posting, I actually got my bum off the horse this time. It was amazing. This time I could almost do the half-seat ride while last time it was ridiculous.

It was funny - this list time when I was done riding the horse, I felt like I was trying to get my sea legs back. I didn't feel like the ground felt quite right, like there should have been a horse beneath me instead of the ground. Does that sound like a convert? I dunno. I'm probably not going to have any lessons beyond my fourth for a long time.

So it's nice to have a little dream come true. It's nice to have Derrill and Hyrum come and watch sometimes. And I don't know if I'll get back to it or not. Might be kinda nice to know a horse all of its life and then ride it, might be kinda cool, but ... I never know if I'm in for that kind of work. Maybe once I've had all my kids I'll know.

Hopalong Hyrum

Hyrum got to take part in Mommy's horseriding lesson last week.

Hyrum remembered this week that he was promised he could ride the horse again. He was sad not to accompany Mommy on her lesson. While I got him ready for bed, he was looking for her, then remembered where she was: "Mommy? Mommy? ... Mommy ride a horse."

Mommy wins

Back when Hyrum was still babbling, I had a mission. A mission of indoctrination.

Hyrum, what does a cow say? "blurblegabuu" A cow says moo.
Hyrum, what does a cat say? A cat says meow. ... [and so on through several animals]
Hyrum, what does Daddy say? Daddy says, "I love you."

Eventually he started making animal sounds and could play along.
Hyrum, what does a cow say? "moo" That's right. A cow says moo.
Hyrum, what does a cat say? "meow" That's right. A cat says meow. ...
Hyrum, what does Daddy say? "..." Daddy says, "I love you."

I knew the day would come when someone would ask what Daddy says and I wanted that first spontaneous answer to be "I love you."

I didn't quite win. The first thing "daddy says" was "I the monster tickles." Oh well. There was still time. I talked about some of the other things "daddy says" earlier this week. When I got back home from Denver, Hyrum told me that "Daddy says, 'Welcome to Family Fun Time. Play Family Feud.'" [video coming soon.] I asked him what Mommy says. "Play Family Feud." riiiiight. Did Mommy really say that? "No." What does Hyrum say? "Play Family Feud." Gotcha.

Then tonight I was getting him ready for bed. Part of the nighttime ritual includes Hyrum setting up a plastic "frog" (played by a sea turtle) on the toilet so he can sit on it and "practice potty." While he practices, we read him a story about "A Potty for Me." In the story, before he figures out how to use the potty the boy pees his pants. But Mom says, "That's okay."

As usual, I paused at the end of sentences to prompt Hyrum to fill in the missing word. He didn't say anything when I got to the mommy though. So I asked, "What does Mommy say?"

"I love you, too." ...

Mommy wins.

While I was in Denver, you see, Joy got to introduce Pete's Dragon to him. It opens with a song between Pete and his dragon, Elliot. Elliot burbles something and Pete answers, "I love you, too." Mommy sang it to him this week. A lot. Mommy says, "I love you, too." I was very gratified that Joy got to hear him say that.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Daddy says...

Hyrum has a new favorite phrase. "Daddy says ..."

Daddy says, I the Tickle Monster! Once he started tickling me, I would ask, "Are you the Tickle Monster? Are YOU the Tickle Monster??" which he enjoyed immensely and Mommy didn't. I was relieved that the next day he changed his tune: Sometimes Hyrum reports that I say he is the Tickle Monster, sometimes that I am, sometimes that Mommy is. But Daddy clearly has the authority to say who is Tickle Monster and should commence tickling at once.

Hyrum's turns as Tickle Monster are very cute: first he gives us a beep, then with his hand already so conveniently placed, he gives our chins coochicoos while smiling broadly. Oh, it's cute! Tests have also confirmed that Hyrum knows he is not a monster, that he is a child of God and a big boy, so Daddy is out of the soup.

Daddy says, Play Family Feud. We found a Family Feud version on Facebook and Hyrum played it with us by laughing whenever we got an X. Today he tried to convince Mommy to play it with him by claiming I told him to.

Joy hypothesizes that Hyrum thinks whatever he wants is what Daddy wants too, so "Daddy says" is just a way to say he wants something. ... only cuter. It is true that he is picking up on things I have introduced to him.

Another possibility is that he's decided if he can't get what he wants by saying "I want," maybe he can get it by claiming that Daddy said it. If that's the case, he will eventually learn how a family runs, and it's not by playing "Simon says." Watch out when he discovers the power of "Mommy says," though!

Oh, and another wonderful breakthrough happened last week. Hyrum knows his name!

No, seriously. Up until last week, if asked his name, he would say something that resembled "Hammer." Now he's up to "Hy-um" or "Hywum." It'll be a while before he gets that R firmly in place, though. ... I wonder how long it took me to figure out Derrill.... Grandma, any ideas?

Maybe we need a website that will tell parents how long it will be before their child can pronounce its name. "Bob" comes before "Robert" comes before "Mahonrimoriancumer."

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Pioneer Day: The Rest of the Story

I celebrated Pioneer Day by flying to the Rockies (one state to the east) in great comfort for a work conference. I walked a mile to church (and back), honoring my ancestors. Elder Marlin K. Jensen, as part of the celebrations in Utah, discussed the mostly forgotten stories of the Native American tribes who lived there before the pioneers arrived.
With villages and camps clustered primarily in the valleys but also in arid locations usually near water sources, the Indians regarded the land as sacred and were strongly attached to it, he said. "The land and its bounty were critical to their existence." Unfortunately, useful land was scarce, he noted. "From the day the 1847 pioneers first put their plows in the ground, "settlement" for them would mean displacement for Indians." 
Though there was sometimes conflict, he emphasized the attempts on both sides to respect, tolerate, and accommodate.
He quoted the reminiscence of Velate Richardson who, when interviewed at age 99, credited Indians with teaching Mormon pioneers how to survive: "Grandmother praised the Indians. [She said] they wasn't any meaner than we was."
Elder Jensen also quoted a written recollection of Lewis Barney regarding a dispute that arose after Indian women were allowed to glean grain from Mormon fields after harvest. A few of them took grain standing in the shocks, and the farmers then withdrew permission. After one farmer drove some Indian women off his land, an indignant chief approached Brother Barney, and said, "This is our land and this is our water, our grass, our valleys, and this is our wheat. I will have this field and this wheat."
The chief then said he would kill Brother Barney and raised his rifle. Brother Barney caught hold of the barrel. After several minutes of scuffling, the chief gave up, eyed his adversary, and began to laugh. They agreed to be friends. Brother Barney told him to send the women into the fields and glean all they wanted and they would not be molested.
"This account clearly reveals the differing points of view of settlers and Indians," Elder Jensen remarked. "In the settlers' view, the land was not theirs and the Indians needed permission to go on it and enjoy its fruit. The Indian view was that the land had been and still was theirs and having given the settlers permission to plant crops, Indians should now rightfully share in the harvest." ...

"In think telling the rest of the story requires one to acknowledge that Indians made sincere and often heroic efforts to absorb the tide of Mormon emigrants and to peacefully and even symbiotically co-exist with them," he said. Yet eventually, relations deteriorated and were similar to those in other parts of the West, he said.
"Regardless of how one views the equities of Indian-Mormon relations in those times, the end result was that the land and cultural birthright Indians once possessed in the Great Basin were taken from them," he said. "As tragic as that is, history cannot be unlived. What we can do, the least we can do from a distance of 160 years is to acknowledge and appreciate the monumental loss this represents on the part of Utah's Indians. That loss and its 160-year aftermath are the rest of the story.
"We can also work until the rest of the story becomes an integral part of the story; until Wakara, Wanship, Washakie and Black Hawk have their appropriate place in Utah's history books as well as Brigham, Heber and Parley; until Utah's history includes Indian history and July 24th commemorates everyone's contribution to our state's unique past."

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Science and Religion sounding similar

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Marilynne Robinson

Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorTea Party

STEWART (at 2:52 in the above clip): I’ve always been fascinated that the more you delve into science, the more it appears to rely on faith. You know, when they start to speak about the universe, they say,
‘Well, actually most of the universe is anti-matter.’
‘Oh really? Where’s that?’
‘Well, you can’t see it.’
‘Well where is it?’
‘It’s there.’
‘Well can you measure it?’
‘We’re working on it.’

And it’s a very similar argument to someone who would say,
‘Well, God created everything.’
‘Well where is he?’
‘He’s there.’

Hat tip.

I Love being a Dad

Someone asked recently under what conditions having children makes a person happier. The asker guessed that if you really dig serving other people, you'd probably like it, but he prefers being footloose and fancy free. I responded (with anonymous names):
When we had Hyrum, we were surprised to discover that I really like babies and that Joy ... is more fond of older ages. As a single, I had worried that I would hate being a dad of small, noisy children, mostly waiting until they grew up to really be able to enjoy it. Lo and behold, 2.5 years later I haven't found an age I don't like. It just keeps getting better!

It's not the service for me - diapers just need to be done and mealtimes rarely involve a picnic. It's the connection and bonding with this person who thinks I'm just the coolest thing ever. It's seeing the world in wonder again. It's having someone in the house who shares my love of music all day every day. It's being part of this amazing progression and personal development with someone who changes in dramatic ways every two weeks if not faster.

Last week, Hyrum discovered trains. He wants to hear bluegrass music that sounds like trains and Daddy should sing to him at night about the Gospel Train. Mommy reads to him about trains. He wants to play a train computer game and visit the train museum. He's suddenly interested in geography because in "the train game" we built a railroad to Columbus and Detroit, and any mention of those cities gets him excited. His blocks changed from rising temples to chugging trains overnight. I can't remember being as excited about trains as he is right now and I know he'll pass on to something else soon, so I can enjoy feeding this train fever for as long as it holds his interest. It's fun and stimulating being a dad. For me.

I love being a dad.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

My Favorite Part of the Day

Hi there. Hy here to tell you about my favorite part of the day:

About a month ago, Daddy decided I was old enough to appreciate a Magic Time from his childhood known as Family Fun Time. While Family Home Evening happens every week - with a lesson, song, scriptures, prayer, activity, and dessert - Family Fun Time happens every night. We read a little from the grownups' Book of Mormon, Daddy explains it and Mommy ties it into Jesus ... and then we have fun!

"Fam'y Fun Time" is one of the first things I ask for after breakfast. Mommy says, "He is completely insane about Family Fun Time." I ask for it whenever I see Daddy after breakfast and it's one of the first things I say to Mommy. If both Mommy and Daddy are home, we could have Family Fun Time! I clap when he announces that it's Time.

We take turns choosing the fun. Mommy likes watching VeggieTales and bouncing on their bed. Daddy likes taking me outside to play or exercise or playing a video game. He taught me all about The Train Game: Sid Meier's Railroads. I just want to watch the intro movie over and over again. I tell Mommy and Daddy about the "tracks." I'm also very excited about the towns we've built to and changing the color of the trains. "Blue train," "green train," etc. Tonight for FHE, Daddy showed me on a map where temples are in the USA, including three in Columbus, Detroit, and Chicago. After introducing each one, I said, "Like in train game."

Sometimes I ask for movies we've seen, like Peter Pan's "You Can Fly" or a scene from Mary Poppins. Sometimes I ask for Candy Land. Sometimes I want to play in the rice. Once or twice I've asked to color with Mommy and Daddy. Basically, whatever I wanted to do during the day but couldn't because it was the wrong time.

I never want Family Fun Time to end. Now I say in every prayer, "Thank Thee Mommy Daddy."

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Mommy Decorates

Decorating Hyrum's room with the alphabet, much to his obvious delight.

My Morning

Hi there. Hy here.

My day starts somewhere between 5am and 6:30. When I wake up, I find my room spotlessly clean, my door wide open, and a gate that keeps me from getting out. This isn't a problem though. I go to the edge of the gate and look up. There, perched on top of the washing machine just above my head, is a massive pile of books and a couple toys, one of them usually involving the alphabet. Daddy puts them there when he checks on me at night, opens the door to cool off my room (or heat it up in winter), and puts the gate in place. I pull them down one at a time (sometimes ten at a time) and spend a while quietly reading and playing.

Enough is enough, though. Eventually I call out, "Daddy, come in!" If he or Mommy wake up before 7, they come to tell me it isn't time for them to get me yet and close my door. If not, Daddy will drag himself across the floor, inform me that he needs to go to the bathroom and pray and then he'll be with me. "Okay!" I shout, and then continue asking him to "Come in." Daddy has taught me to say, "Good morning," when I see him or Mommy.

When Daddy comes in, I tell him all about my morning. Today, for instance, I told him, "I found a picture." It was an ad for the Disney Movie Club. It has a picture of Peter Pan and Mickey Mouse. I told Daddy I wanted the picture on my wall, and then I placed it on the wall like Mommy did when she was decorating.

After talking a little, Daddy and I read the scriptures - one of the children's versions. I best like stories about the temple or people singing. Then Daddy sings to me and I say my morning prayer. Daddy changes my diaper and dresses me. He used to ask me which I wanted to do first, and what after that and after that and... but I always asked for things in that order, so he figured it out eventually. After the in-room routine, Daddy lets me out to watch the scriptures on TV and then 10 minutes of some movie. Right now we're watching Ratatouille, which I can say. "Ratatouille. See?" If I haven't seen Mommy by the time we leave the room, I go in search of her. After the TV, I have breakfast.

Breakfast is usually yogurt, peaches, applesauce, or cookie dough. I drink apple juice and also chocolate milk that I mix myself. After breakfast, I play by myself for a few minutes while Mommy and Daddy have breakfast and Daddy gets ready to go to work. Then Mommy and I play and work for the rest of the morning. I usually get some time to write, draw, or color at some point in the morning.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Hyrum's Top Twenty - Jun/Jul

I think we're going to put a bit more time between music updates from now on. Joy doesn't play music for Hy during the day most days. When she does, it's because he is desperate for a song (e.g. You Can Fly) and it becomes that month's #1. The Top 10 hasn't changed much at all over a month and there's not that much separating the top 9-20 from the next 30 songs. So here are the Top 20 for the month.

Stories - "Let's Go Fly a Kite" is the song Hyrum asks Daddy to sing most often. Not only that, but he now sings it with me! To listen to us harmonize (boy, it's hard to keep the key when someone is singing in a different key!), you'll need to click on "Read More" then scroll back up to here. Blogspot is having a bad hair day or something.  (He had been a bit rambunctious just before, so he was in a time out on the bed. I've always sung to him to help him calm down, and now he sings back to prove he has calmed down enough to be with polite society again.)

1. You Can Fly - 79 times
2. Let's Go Fly a Kite - 35
3. Is it True? - 33
4. Army of Helaman - 32
5. Terantara - 26
6. 76 Trombones - 25
7. Fraggle Rock Theme - 22
    Primary Colors - 22
9. Phantom of the Opera - 15
10. Feed the Birds - 14
     Over in the Meadow
     A British Bank
13. Spread Wide Thy Wings - 13
     Battle Hymn of the Republic
15. Praise to the Man - 12
     Mickey Mouse Club March
17. They, the Builders - 11
18. Semper Fidelis - 10
      Come to Me, Bend to Me
     Winnie the Pooh Theme

Monday, July 12, 2010

Brushing teeth with Love

Joy Posted
Hyrum is sucking on his tooth brush and then he says. I like blue. I like blue. I love blue. Suck on the tooth brush periodically. I love red (he kisses the plastic wrap on the toilet paper). I like mommy. I love mommy," and kisses my knee. (I was sitting on the toilet brushing my teeth). All the while he was smiling really big. I know that this could go in the cuter all the time slot, but I must write down somewhere the first time my son spontaneously said I love mommy. It was really sweet that he was accompanied by a little kiss as well. It is really good to be a mommy at times like those.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Don't mock me, Daddy

Hi there. Hy here.

This conversation has happened one too many times as far as I'm concerned:

D: Hyrum, do you want to read scriptures?
H: Read scriptures.
D: Oh, you want to read shickers?
H: No, read scriptures.
D: Shickers.
H: No!
D: Scriptures?
H: Read scriptures.
D: Okay, read shickers.
H: No!

I'm only two. Gimme a break, Dad. I'm doing the best I can.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Hyrum's Longest Sentence

Hyrum is playing with lego-like blocks today. He's building "temples." Then he knocks them down and builds them again. At one point, he proudly said:

"I build temple. I made it with blue and green and red and ... yellow and ... blue and ... green!"

We have a winnah!

Monday, July 5, 2010


A man's home is his castle.
Home is where the heart is.
Home is where you hang your hat.
Home is where you clean up after your cat. (that's Mom)

I was writing a book review Friday by a woman who falls in love with every city (and most every person) she meets as soon as she gets there.

That's not me.

I imagined being on a job interview and while being driven back to the airport having someone ask me if I thought I would like living in their area. Now I'm not stupid, so I know the Right Answer is "Yes, I would really like to live here." (Please hire me.)

But my overly brutally honest answer was, "I tend to mock any place I live." I criticized Santa Barbara thoroughly as a teenager (pretty normal behavior, I'd say). I mocked Utah and Provo almost without mercy during my undergrad - letting up a little my senior year. I spent more time enduring and chuckling over Germany than immersing myself in it. Ithaca was never meant to be home, so I felt free to attack it every chance I get until a couple years ago when I decided it had gone on long enough and I might as well start to accept this place.

And yet. Only shortly after leaving Santa Barbara, I referred to it as The Second Garden of Eden. When Joy and I went back to Provo a couple years ago to introduce our newborn son to her family, it felt so wonderfully like home that I began thinking I could really enjoy not just going back to teach at BYU, but to live in Utah. That's when I started defending Utah to the denizens of Ithaca. When we went on our honeymoon, we spent some time in Germany and many of my favorite memories were the few days we spent back in my first area with people and streets I loved.

It's not about not being happy where I am or thinking I will finally be happy once I get somewhere else. I was very happy at BYU and knew I was. I was happy on my mission (for reasons not easily fathomed) and was not eager for it to be over. I enjoy life in Ithaca. There's so much to appreciate: greenery that makes Santa Barbara seem more a desert oasis, waterfalls and brooks within walking distance, a diverse and stimulating populace that brings together a cornucopia of cuisines and cultures.

Today I understand it better. I was reading a blog by someone who is leaving her post in Goma, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. She doesn't know where her next job will be, or even if it will pay her as her humanitarian work has taken her to many unpaid places, each of which has been home with a vitality and brilliance of description that is delightful to read and experience second-hand. I sent her a quick comment, asking her what "home" meant to her after all this as she sat in her parents' house with her feet in the kitchen sink so she can use her neighbor's wireless connection (with permission).

It suddenly hit me as I asked her. I know what home means to me.

Home is the Place I Return To.

I almost cry as I realize it. Our entire theology is based around the idea of leaving Home, going to a strange place full of temptation and trial, wanderers in a strange land, with finally returning Home as the ultimate goal. Return with Honor. I was on my mission when I realized that's what Heaven meant to me: returning Home.

At BYU, Home was Santa Barbara. To my mother's dismay, though, as soon as I got there I referred to my dorm room as Home. Back at the dorm room again, it was returning to the temple that felt most like Home.

Because of that, I'm starting to think, not only is this mobile home my Home, but to a certain extent my office is becoming Home; the church building is Home; the temple is Home; our best friends' apartment is Home; the little brook in the woods a short walk away is Home; even the grocery store I frequent and the buses I take are a little bit of Home. Someday, God willing, I will get out of here. And for the first time, I hope that someday I will return and rejoice to be Home.

Home is the Place I Return To. And now I know the answer I will give on a job interview, correct and honest, when I am asked if I would like to live there: "I would love to Return here and make this place a Home."

Response to Canaries with Gray on Their Wings

Last month's home teaching message retold a story by Pres. Monson about a widow who had three canaries. When she died, she instructed that
Two, with perfect yellow coloring, were to be given to her friends. The third, Billie, had yellow coloring marred by gray on his wings. Sister McKee had written in a note to me: “Will you and your family make a home for him? He isn’t the prettiest, but his song is the best.”
My first thoughts and the discussion we had when our home teachers came over to tell us about it centered on identifying our strengths and making them shine. I heard several other people respond to the story in a very similar vein. We all have at least one talent, though some are more visible than others, and we need to let them shine.

We do well to focus our attention more on our strengths than our weaknesses. We do better to focus our attention more on other people's strengths than on their weaknesses. Give praise and thanks where it's due and all that.

There's one little thing we forgot: this is Pres. Monson we're talking about. The young Tommy raised pigeons. PIGEONS, for crying out loud. Compared to canaries they aren't merely "not the prettiest," they're downright ugly. Outwardly, they are failed doves. They fail as songbirds too: having never learned to whistle, they are content to hum. They scavenge in cities and poop on statues and ... for some reason, Tommy loved them.

The canary had nothing to prove. It did not need a "strength" or a "talent" in order to be loved, accepted, appreciated, and honored in the Monson household. Not because it was any better than the pigeons, but because the Monson household was one of love where birds and people could be accepted in and through and because of their weakness, rather than despite it.

The canary couldn't do anything about the gray in its wings. There is no canary Rogaine. Some of our weaknesses are going to be very long term, and the fact is that our weakness (not weaknessES, but weakness) is part and parcel of our mortality.

The sooner and more fully we can love ourselves in and through - yes, even because of - our weakness, the happier we will be. The more we can love others in their weakness, the happier we all will be.
The Redeemer chose imperfect people to teach the way to perfection. He did so then. He does so now—even yellow canaries with gray on their wings. He calls you and me to serve Him here below. Our commitment must be total. And in our struggle, should we stumble, let us plead: “Lead us, oh lead us, great Molder of men, out of the darkness to strive once again.

Sunday, July 4, 2010


Hi there. Hy here.

Just in case anyone doubts my ability to recite my ABCs, I present you two videos of proof.
One, that I know my ABCs without any prompts at all...
And one, that I can sing along with Mommy and a book.

The Games We Play - a Joy post

Hyrum really loves cards. And he's watched us play board games that use cards and has wanted to play with us. There are a couple of games with cards we have let him play, and he fell in love with one of them:

Candy Land.

He discovered it in his room in a drawer that he had never opened before (and that we hadn't realized he could open yet - no longer baby-proof!). I think that's part of the magic - the game that appeared out of nowhere.

[I dub this picture: the blond Hyrum Weasley.]

So I told him what it was and he wanted to play it with me. So I got it out and we played. I tried to teach him some of the rules - funny thing to do with a 2 year old, I guess. And we went through the game twice using one little gingerbread guy and taking turns picking up a card. And he liked it and he said, "again again!" I said, "Maybe Daddy will play with us."

So then for Family Fun Time - that day or the next, I forget - Hyrum starts saying "Candy Wand. Candy Wand." It was Derrill's turn to choose the Family Fun Time activity, so I told him he'd have to ask Daddy to play it. He agreed, so we played again, and then he wanted to play it again the next night (his turn to choose), and Derrill reports that he has asked about it about half the nights when he gets put to bed. He points up to the game shelves that he can't reach and calls out that he can see Candy Land. "Candy Wand! Pway Candy Wand!"

And when he chose Candy Land for his family fun time activity, it was the first time he had chosen a non-movie for his family time activity, so I was pretty impressed. 1) That he was still interested 2) That it was not a movie.

A day or two later I was playing with Hyrum and he wanted to play Candy Land. I said okay and got it down and let him play with it however he wanted to while I went to do something else and let him play with it in his room. Because it did seem that he wanted to play with it in a different way than we wanted to. So I went back to the room to see what he had figured out, and he had started matching the cards. He had grabbed the blue cards first (the cards with the blue squares) and put the cards with one blue square together and the cards with two blue squares near them. When I came in, he was finishing that and had started with the green cards. This is not surprising since these are two of his favorite colors.

I was really impressed: with all the cards in Candy Land, how persistent he was in getting all of the cards of the same color together! since in the past he seemed to get distracted when working with too many cards at the same time. So he wanted a matching game while we were trying to play a board game. He also enjoys matching the candy cards to the pictures on the board, particularly the gumdrop and Mr. Mint.

They Grow Up So Fast

Today Hyrum got hurt. He had a boo-boo on his finger. "Fingo hu't," he said.
As I've often offered, I said, "Daddy kiss, make better."
I kissed his finger. He looked at it and said, "Doesn't work."

He called on Mommy, who came and similarly anointed the wounded digit.
"Doesn't work," he declared.

A couple minutes later, though, he felt better, so I told him that kisses must work slowly. He pondered that very thoughtfully....

Hyrum's Choice for Independence Day

I showed Hyrum two videos on YouTube yesterday to get him in a patriotic mood. I told him one was the way we used to sing it (Kate Smith, "God Bless America") and the other was the way we sing it now (Lee Greenwood, "God Bless the USA"). His pick "bless America":  (be sure to watch for The Gipper)

Then we spent Sunday morning with Mormon Tabernacle Choir videos singing patriotic songs.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Drawing the Wrong Conclusion

The wrong conclusion: If you're going to fall from grace, it's better to do it first. Both the Lamanites and the Nephites fell, but it's the Nephites who were genocided out of existence when they fell last. The Lamanites are still around.

A marginally better conclusion: It is better to be the descendant of someone who fell from grace than to be the person who chooses to jump.

Another marginally better conclusion: The higher you are, the worse it hurts if you fall. Laman was never very high to begin with.

Include as corollaries that we are also judged based on how high we could have risen and that there's no way to safely climb down a little before you jump and you might start to get close to something that resembles accuracy.