Sunday, January 24, 2010

Boom Boom Pow

Traci told me this story, so try to imagine Traci's librarian voice when you read it.

Curtis spent the morning walking around carrying an empty wrapping paper roll. I couldn't figure out why he kept calling it a "boom." Until he hit me with it and exclaimed, "Boom!"

The end.

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Friday, October 23, 2009

Pre Kids

Paige and I were having some bonding time, sitting at the computer looking through Traci's Facebook pics. We came across this one. I was amazed by:
  1. The fact that it's now been five years since I've been to Holland.
  2. There was a time when Traci and I could go on a 10-day vacation and only have to ask our family to pick up our mail.
I've been trying to figure out a way to take the family to Holland for a month next summer. But after flying to California with one kid last year, 12+ hours of travel seems next to impossible.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Pose-Off

So here's the deal with Traci and bodybuilding. Traci's little brother is always up to one scheme or another. His latest venture is the one that makes the most sense--trying to get his own personal training/nutrition counseling business off the ground. So it made sense that he was working out a lot more and paying extra attention to his diet. I was, however, a little surprised when he said he was training to compete in the Mr. Utah bodybuilding competition.

So he's been doing all of the crazy things that one does to get their body down to 3 percent body fat and ready to strut around in a blue, crushed velvet speedo. A few examples:

Having a personal spray-tan technician come to the house to spray him down in his shower.

Making me spend two hours taking all the swears out of an Eminem song so he could pose (not dance, like I kept saying) to it.

And saying things like this. "Duh, mom. Of course I can't have a diet coke. I'm on so many fat burners that if I add any more caffeine to my body my head would explode."

I've got to hand it to him. He stuck to his insane diet, dropped 20+ pounds, lost a bunch of inches, gained a ton of muscle, and competed. He ended up taking first place in one competition and second in the other.

Traci was a supportive sister and went with her parents to ALL FOUR HOURS of the competition. She kept sending me texts with messages like "So. Much. Posing." By the time she got home, she'd seen every muscle (and body part) imaginable and has now decided that she, too is going to become a bodybuilder.

Unfortunately, no pictures of her brother because Traci kept taking pictures by using the video feature on her phone. Whoops.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Traci's New Friends

While I was home with the kids last night, these are the folks Traci was hanging out with:

Jay Cutler

Heather Armbrust

It's a wonder she came back home at all.


Wednesday, October 07, 2009

NYC Day Four: Going Home

We couldn't have asked for a better trip and that was thanks entirely to our wonderful hosts--letting us sleep on their floor, eat their food, talk their ears off, ask them 10 million questions.

As if they hadn't done enough, here was their last act of kindness before we left. Knowing that we'd be pressed for time to get from The Late Show to our flight, Noah offered to bring our luggage from his work (where we'd dropped it off in the morning) to the subway stop outside the Ed Sullivan Theater. When I asked him how he'd drag both of our suitcases across town he said, "Oh, I'll just make my coworker help me. He owes me." The coworker would then stay on the platform with the luggage and Noah would come up and find us.

When we got out of the theater, I had a text that said, "I had to come alone, meet me in the subway." Noah had lugged all of our stuff--up and down a million stairs--by himself, just to save us a little bit of headache.

I'd like to say that this was because Noah likes us so incredibly much (which, of course, is a true statement) but the reality is that he would do this for anyone, simply because he's a great guy.

So we met him in the subway. He gave us both a big hug, got us on the train, and sent us on our way to the airport.

The End. Almost.

I was feeling pretty confident that we were going to make our flight. All we had to do was to make it to the Air Train, and then to our terminal. Fortunately, we were on a new train, one with an electronic board that showed the stops. I noticed that our stop wasn't on the board. I knew we were on the E Train like we were supposed to be. But for some reason it seemed to following the F route. This train would not get us to the airport. Uh, panic time.

Against all of my instincts, I asked for help. Random lady across from us was nice enough to get us off at the right stop to transfer to another E. We made it the Air Train. We made it to the terminal. We made it to our flight. (And then we sat on the tarmac for an hour for whatever reason. Oh well.)

JetBlue is nice because every chair has its own TV. The TVs have regular cable, which is great because I could spend most of the flight watching Monday Night Football. I was also able to watch the episode of Dave Letterman I had just witnessed live a few hours earlier. Surreal. But just as funny as I had remembered the first time I watched it.

We were on our way home. Certainly excited to see the sleeping kids (we didn't get home until after midnight) but already sad to say goodbye to the City.

Wonderful trip.

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Sunday, October 04, 2009

NYC Day Four: Yom Kippur at David Letterman

Monday in the city was the final sprint on our four day whirlwind. We headed to Midtown to drop our luggage off at Noah and Allison's work and then went across the street to Rockefeller Center. Rather than stand in the megaline at the Empire State building, we took in a similar view from Top of the Rock. (Well worth the $20/person ticket.)

We then clocked in the only real shopping of the entire trip, about an hour at H&M. Traci was satisfied.

Armed with a couple of bags of clothes, we headed toward The Late Show. We stopped at the Stagecoach Deli, just around the corner from the Ed Sullivan Theater. We got two lousy half sandwiches, two Cokes, and some ornery service for $30. Boo.

We checked in at Letterman (stood in line for a few minutes, got our tickets, stood in line a few more minutes, and were then told to come back in an hour.) We went to Times Square to kill some time and were pleased to find that we were right in the middle of Turkish Days.

Back at the Late Show, we again stood in line out on the sidewalk while the interns worked to get us excited and ready to unleash riotous laughter and the hint of any joke. ("If a guest says something that you think might be funny, pretend it's the funniest thing you've ever heard." I feel bad for the audience who laughed a few days later when Dave made his unfunny announcement.)

I loved everything about Letterman. Once escorted into the much-smaller-than-I-expected Ed Sullivan Theater, we were warmed up by pre-show comedian, the Late Show Band (minus Paul Shaffer, who was celebrating Yom Kippur), and and this old school clip of Dave Letterman working at Taco Bell.

Right before the taping began, Dave came out for about two minutes to chat with the crowd. The show took off from there, running like a well-oiled machine. I laughed from start to finish (Traci told me to not laugh too much as "She wanted to watch the show, not be on the show." I refrained from doing anything stupid, for which Traci was grateful), from the opening monologue, through the not-so-interesting guests (Felicity Huffman, Dr. Oz). As avid fans of The Hills, Traci and I were super excited about Brody Jenner reading the Top 10 list.

I even loved the Avett Brother's performance, and I am now in love with the title song from their new album. (As they started playing, with their banjo, cello, and cowboy getup, Traci turned to me and said, dejected, "This is what music sounds like now, huh?")

Just over an hour after the taping began, we were back on the street, pleased with the experience but a bit sad that it was time to go back home...

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Saturday, October 03, 2009

NYC Day Three: Sabbath in the City

On Sunday we were back on our own again. To make it to our matinee of Traci's beloved "Bye Bye Birdie," we wouldn't be able to go to the Riley's ward in Harlem. Instead, we went to a ward at the Manhattan Temple. So we headed to the subway on a rainy Sunday morning.

Despite being in New York, and despite being inside of a temple, church was just church. Same fold-up chairs in the overflow section and same Mighty Lite tables propped up against the back wall. The biggest difference was that we were free to watch people wrestle with their kids rather than wrestle with our own. After the meeting, we changed our clothes and snuck back out into the city.

Everyone asked where we ate while we were in New York. Well, the Sutherlands just aren't culinary experts. Case in point: between church and "Bye Bye Birdie" we stopped at the McDonald's in Times Square.

Our first Broadway play was no disappointment. Traci squealed in delight as she saw her high school theater days come to life on the big stage. I perked up momentarily when sassy Gina Gershon was in a negligee for a split second. We both got a kick out of Uncle Jesse's (aka John Stamos) squeaky voice and flubbed lines.

After the show we met up with the Rileys for a Sunday afternoon stroll through Central Park. As the Rileys took us off the beaten path and through the misty foliage, it was more like we were wandering through the forests of "The Princess Bride" than walking through the middle of the city.

Back outside of the park, we walked around the Upper West Side, past the Guggenheim, The Met, and all throughout Gossip Girl territory. (You can actually pay to go on a Gossip Girl bus tour. Traci says she would have been game had we been staying a few more days.)

The rest of the evening was spent having dinner and conversation with the Rileys. Not a bad way to end a Sunday.

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Monday, September 14, 2009

Fall Showers

Today is a rainy day September day in Salt Lake City. But before fall, it was summer, and before that it was spring. I just found this self-portrait of 3/4ths of the fam from May, back when we were gearing up for all the excitement the sunny days would bring...

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Sunday, August 30, 2009

Traci's Best Dance Crew

There are things that Traci watches on TV that annoy me (what's that TLC show called? Whoops, I Had a Baby But Didn't Know I Was Pregnant?). But every once in a while she has favorites that just catch me off guard. America's Best Dance Crew? Curious. I think it's because she's still got the hots for AC Slater.

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Traci Manifesto?!

For ages, Traci has talked about having her own blog. She's already set up a domain, but has yet to actually post anything, believing that no one would be interested in reading it.

I would dare say that the biggest reason folks even bother to read this blog is in hopes that I'll mention something about Traci and the kiddos. So if you're ready for a Traci Manifesto, send some love to the comments box.


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Injured Reserve List

Traci's had a few injuries over the years. I remember the blackened fingernail that came from shutting her hand in the car door. There was the wounded tailbone from when she slipped on the stairs when she was pregnant with Curtis. But the current sore neck came from something completely surprising to me--gymnastics?!

We were jumping on a trampoline with our kids in St. George when Traci made an amazing announcement. She was going to do a flip. I've known Traci for a long time and she's never made mention of trampoline flips--and I even had a tramp in high school. I was even more shocked when she actually did it!

She landed on her back and now has a sore neck. I'm guessing the flips will go back into hiding. Bummer.


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Who You Gonna Believe? Traci or Snoop Dogg?

Traci doesn't believe that my email from Snoop really came from Snoop. Sure, anyone in his entourage certainly could have typed the note as if they were the D-O-Double-G. But I have no reason to disbelieve Mr. Dogg. He's never let me down before. Plus, he called me "neffew." That's certainly not as close as "son" or "bro" but it's still pretty good.

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Tuesday, July 07, 2009


It was a miracle I was even able to snap this pic, what with the miraculous speed in which the subject flew by.

After a decade of saying it, Traci finally did it--running her first 5K at this year's Murray 4th of July Parade. With the help of my sister Sarah, Traci was able to take a respectable 488th place. You best watch your back, Usain Bolt.

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