Monday, November 5, 2012


Tyler has had a successful year. I'm kind of jealously proud. There, I admitted it. But I am so happy for his accomplishments this year. It's why I married him....always the Renaissance Man to me.

Starting with......graduating from BYU Law school on April 20th. And I stand corrected from this post last week. He did not graduate Summa Cume Laude, but Magna Cume Laude, so not as high. But he did graduate 10th in his class of about 140 students, so not too shabby, eh? He did make it into the Order of the Coif, top 10, however.

Here are some snapshots my dad kindly took the day of his graduation. It was a FULL weekend. We decided to enlist the help of our families while they were in town and let them help us move the day after he graduated. Luckily, the weather was perfect the whole weekend and we BBQ'd outside that night of graduation. Keeping it simple. We did, however, take all of our parents and his grandparents (for helping him along the way, financially and emotionally, through his schooling) to the Chef's Table in Provo. Lovely lovely restaurant. We've been three times and haven't been disappointed yet.

Ready for a TON of pictures?

 Don't you love how photogenic we all are?

 Many of our family came out for the occasion (not all pictured).

 The 6-guy study group. We really grew close to these families. Some of my best friends now. I miss them all already as we're all over the country now. (two spouses/4 children missing).

 The guys....they spent a lot of time together. Now they do it through Fantasy Football!

 Tyler conducting closing song. I bawled. The end of an era. The student era....hopefully. (I honestly won't be surprised if he gets his PhD one day). Plus I think it was "America" or "The Star-Spangled Banner" of those patriotic songs so it really got to me.

Tyler and his bro, Troy.

 Tyler with his mother.

 Tyler and his father.

Tyler at his carrel. He spent maaaaaannnnnnyyyyy hours here in this little cell. Uh, the peace sign is something he picked up on his mission. 

After graduation he began work at a law firm in SLC, the same one that he interned with last summer. He's enjoying the work thus far, and the hours are incredibly manageable. Starting in January he'll clerk for Chief Justice Durrant in the Utah Supreme Court. It's a prestigious position, to clerk, mainly because it's great one-on-one experience with judges. He interned for several other judges while in school and he really enjoyed the work so he's looking forward to it.

Then in July he took the Utah Bar and in September we found he passed! Wahoo! All the hours of studying are behind us...sort of. He's planning to take it again in February so he can do legal work in Colorado, mainly for family that may need it in the future.

Sometime before he graduated he completed the course work to become a licensed Utah Realtor. Part of the classwork/hours he took in law school so then he just needed to pass off a few more classes and take the test. So if YOU need a Realtor to buy or sell your home, or your cousins home, or your parents home, or your brother's home, or sister's or friend, give him a call! (or email me). He's happy to do business!

In October he completed the Tough Mudder race experience in Las Vegas with Troy. He had fun training for it all summer and had a blast being in it. Look how tough he looks :) He plans to do to it again next year.

In addition to all of this, he auditioned for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in August. They hold auditions once a year and it's a rigorous process. And we just found out over the weekend that he passed the first three phases. The final "test" is to train with the Temple Square Choir and Chorale School starting in January through April and see if he "passes" then he'll be an official member....we hope. And I'll be an official MOTAB widow. That's what I am going to call myself, lol.

So, I think that is everything thus far this year. He's been very busy. But he handles the stress sooooo much better than I do. For Father's Day I secretly made him this video. He's a great father, husband and friend. It's been a joy to watch him mature and grow (and lose some hair ;0 ) over the past 15 years. Love you honey! The video "unlisted" so please don't paste it all over Facebook, as I'm sure you are wanting to do. Enjoy!

Sunday, November 4, 2012


A few years ago, when Jocelyn was about 3 1/2 years old, we noticed she could do a cool trick--cross both eyes. It was a pretty funny trick. One that she could do on command if we asked her to. We'd laugh and ask her to do it again and again. Then it got to the point that she'd do it for attention. Then it got to the point that we were worried that old saying, "Don't make that face or it'll stick" was beginning to apply to her. Then we asked people not to laugh and give her attention anymore. Then she couldn't do it on command anymore. Then it was only her left eye. Then she'd do it when she was playing excitedly with her toys and more importantly, when she looked closely at things like books and toys. Then we knew it was a problem.

So we took her to Dr Abrams in Orem, at the Excel eye center. By this time she was 5 years old. Luckily we had health insurance for her. He checked her several times, did some basic tests and sure enough, we weren't crazy. She was crossing her eye. It was strabismus. He suggested she get surgery. Neither glasses or a patch would help cure her eye. I had Tyler come into one of the appointments to confirm this. He didn't believe it was that bad. We both thought she was mentally allowing herself to cross her eye for attention. Or I thought it was a "tick" that some children pick up when they feel certain emotions. But Dr Abrams suggested it wasn't mental at all. That it was her muscle in her eye that was forcing it to cross to the center. So she had surgery.

February 24th: I was nervous for this but had to be brave so she could be brave. She had to fast once dinner was over the night before. We had to be at the surgical center at 7am to check in. She got a special t-shirt to put on and then we had to wait. The nurses came in and told me briefly what would happen and what to except  And then I had to say goodbye. I couldn't go in. They felt it was better for that I, the parent, wasn't there to distract her. So she had to go alone. They tried to make it as comfortable as possible for her. She willingly obliged and went with the nurse. She was to breathe into a tube that would relax her and then they would give her anesthesia. Then they would operate, on both eyes, which took very little time. Once she awoke from her anesthesia they'd bring her out to me.

Dr Abrams insisted she would not feel any pain once she woke up. He said it would feel like the foreign body syndrome, when something is gone or added to your body and you can't get rid of it. Or like a speck of dirt is in your eye, but you can't get it out. Baloney. She was in pain. She was scared. She was uncomfortable. She cried bloody tears. I felt so helpless. They let us wait in the recovery room for a few minutes until I could get her to walk by herself or be willing to go outside to the car. She was hungry. She was tired and she was scared. She was afraid she was blind. Afraid to open her eyes because it hurt to her. She just wanted to be held, so I held her. Reminded her not to rub her eyes too hard. Not because it would disturb the stitches or the work that was done on her eye muscles, but because it would not hasten the healing process. She would not accept a popsicle, a drink or anything. I just held her and tried not to cry myself. It was hard.

After 15 minutes or so, we drove home. With no pain medication. They said it wouldn't help. Perhaps Tylenol if she really needed it but it wouldn't focus on her eyes anyway. I encouraged her by telling her she would be able to pet our new puppy when we got home. That gave her comfort too.

A few days before her surgery with our brand new puppy, Zoey.

I put her in bed and suggested she "sleep it off." She still hadn't opened her eyes. She finally  went to sleep and when she awoke we let her eat whatever she wanted. She requested chicken nuggets. So Tyler went and got her some Wendy's. She wore her sunglasses constantly as her eyes were still very sensitive to light.

By the end of the first day she was in good spirits. She barely opened her eyes but mainly she walked around, with her arms outstretched, feeling her way around furniture, like a blind person. It was actually sort of humorous.

By the second day, with her bloodshot eyes, she felt better. She was scared of her own eyes at first. I was too. They looked scary  But then it became something she was almost proud of. She'd go around and stare at other kids hoping they'd notice her creepy eyes. Then, if they did, she'd tell them why, and wait for their curiosity and fascination.

I still marvel at how brave she was. Although she did not expect it would be so intrusive to her. It was probably better that she went into the surgery "blindly" otherwise she would have been too scared. She doesn't want to go through it again, and I don't either. Sadly, the surgery was not a complete success and her eye still crosses, but not as severely. It does not affect her school work but it does need to be cured before it gets worse. So after we moved to SLC I decided I wanted a second opinion. There are only about 5 doctors who specialize in this. So we went and now she is getting bifocal glasses. I'll post a picture in a about a week once her glasses come in. She's excited about it, which is GOOD. But now I wish I would have gone  to this doctor in the first place....wondering if she ever needed the surgery at all. But I can't know now. A gal I visit taught in Provo had a grand daughter with the same problem, but worse, and she went to the SLC Dr and she had surgery too. And this same gal knew of another girl in the stake who had to have the surgery at least 3 times! Then I also visit taught a girl who had a SIL who didn't get her crossed eye surgically fixed until she was 30 years old! She lived with it her whole life, in embarrassment. So I am glad there are options out there.  And glad for a mostly healthy Jocelyn.