Saturday, June 21, 2008

New York

When you are already on the East Coast, you might as well go to New York! We took the train from New Jersey to Downtown New York. All I can say is wow! I quickly told Mark that I was going to be the tourist and he can be the guide since he had been to New York before. He held my hand and I looked up, around, and sideways. It is just as busy and crowded in person as it looks on television! In person though, you get to experience the sounds and smells as well! We decided that it was a lot of fun to go there together, but it is not a place for children. Too many things to view that we don't want young eyes seeing, followed by mouths asking questions about.

We took the fairy out to the Statue of Liberty one day. We departed from the New Jersey side. I highly recommend this, as there were no lines for the boat or tickets. The first stop is Ellis Island were you can get off and go inside the building were immigrants used to go to have their papers processed. Then you can either go back, or go to the Statue of Liberty. She is amazing in person! I have always wanted to see her and I was not disappointed. The one hang up is that to actually go on the statue you have to purchase a separate ticket, which they do not tell you until you get on the island and try to go up to her. These tickets are pre-sold a week in advance, so for future knowledge, plan ahead. It was okay by us though. We had a nice time with each other and enjoyed seeing the craftsmanship in person.

I was thrilled to see 7th Ave.! It is appropriately called Fashion Avenue. I was amazed at all of the designer boutiques, and Macy's! I should have interned there instead of Houston! We saw Times Square and all of its glory. Got to see a Broadway show, Little Mermaid. It was wonderful. All of the actors were wearing Heeley's to make it look like they were flowing smoothly in the water. Had pizza. Rockefeller Plaza, Central Park and everything else. The one place we did not make it to was Ground Zero.

We went all the way up to the 102nd floor of the Empire State Building! It was amazing! First you take an elevator to the 80th floor. Then another to the 86th floor. This is a view point. If you paid extra you can take another elevator to the 102 floor. It is summer, and so there were a lot of people there. The elevators had a bit of a wait. While on the 80th floor they announced that we could take the stairs if we wanted to, to get to the 86th faster. Having no kids with us and being somewhat in shape, we opted for the stairs. Please bear with me as I go on a tangent at this point.

I remember September 11, 2001. We were living in Houston and I was pregnant with John. I don't remember how I heard about the first plane hitting the World Trade Center, but Mark and I were soon glued to the television like everyone else. I remember calling my parents because of the time difference and telling them to turn on the television. I felt sadness, horror, anger, confusion, compassion, love and panic as I sat and watched the events that followed. I could not manage to pull myself away from the television to go shower for the day. It felt surreal. I thought it might even be a sick joke. This is America! This does not happen here! I watched the second plane fly into the next tower. It felt like it was in slow motion. Did I really see that happen? Oh my gosh! What is happening? What about the people in the building and in the plane? What about their families? I don't want Mark to travel anymore! This can not be happening! I am pregnant with my first child. In an instant my world as I knew it changed. What were we going to be facing now? What about my child? Is this the beginning of WW3? Who would do such a thing? And why?

I worried about the people. To be honest, I really did not know much about the World Trade Center. So as the news was giving us information about how many floors and people were inside, I began to feel like I was in a daze. I hope everyone is leaving the building. Show me pictures of people leaving so I know they are safe! I remember asking Mark if the building was going to fall down. He reassured me that they were built of steel and very strong. It had been bombed before and it is still standing. Okay, I thought. I would still feel better if I could see everyone exiting the building. Then it happened. The first tower fell. Right in front of my eyes. Only the sound of gasps and cry's to God came from our mouth and those of the news reporters. Then the second one fell. What is happening here? Are any of us safe anymore? What are we supposed to do? What can I do for those people? Oh my gosh! I hope everyone got out. They had to of evacuated everyone. Surely they all got out.

America was still and quiet that day. There was an eerie feeling every where and with everyone. Who do you trust? As time progressed first hand accounts were published and broadcast on the news. People dazed, confused and covered in a white powder were shown walking on the streets of New York. It was all so surreal.

I write this for two reasons. First, I have never written my feelings or memories of that day, and I feel like I need to. Second, because it all came flooding back to me as I walked up those 6 flights of stairs in the Empire State Building. Concrete, dull, no windows and thin air. I was getting dizzy, starting to find myself having trouble breathing, and wondering if we were there yet as I felt the burn in my thighs with each step. I fought back the tears as I thought of the thousands of people who were in the stairwells of the World Trade Centers on 9/11. A lot of them really did not know what was happening. Then to be in such tight quarters with other people going at their own pace, what kind of confusion did that cause?

I mourned on 9/11 and for a while after. I did not have any ties to people or places there, so I was able to continue with the ins and outs of life fairly quickly. But now, after being there and seeing the sights and the amount of buildings and people in such a small area, I have a greater love and admiration for those that not only lost their lives or a loved one, but for everyone. One of my favorite songs is "I am Proud to be an American". I get choked up every time I hear that song. I have always had a deep love and respect for this wonderful land that we live in. I now have a greater testimony of freedom and brotherly love. I fought back the tears a few more times that day as I toured. I am grateful for the opportunity I had to visit New York and see the sights. I am thankful that I was born in such a wonderful land with freedom that I take for granted. I am thankful and grateful for those who have and do fight for this great land.

It was a wonderful day in New York with my best friend. It was nice to rest my head on his shoulder as we took the train back to New Jersey that night. And so for now, good bye New York, and try to get some sleep.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

New Jersey

Mark and I were given the opportunity to fly out to New Jersey to see if it was a place that we would want to live. His company offered him a position at the corporate office, thus we would need to move. New Jersey is a very beautiful state. Once I located it on the map, and then learned some of its history, I was planning family outings before even looking at homes. Then we looked at homes. Beautiful, but pricey. We are in such a good spot right now with John and the support team we have put together for him in the school, that we just could not justify making the move. It was nice to get away together for 5 days. We flew my mom in to watch the kids and that put our minds at ease. Our 10th anniversary is June 28th, so we just called the trip our "second honeymoon". But wait, did we even have a first honeymoon? Oh yea, I almost forgot. Disneyland for 2 days with Mark's entire family and Dad Davis knocking on the door at 6:30 am to see if we were up and ready to go into the park!

Monday, June 16, 2008


The first one is gone! Our baby is growing up!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to our wonderful dad! The kids really had fun making breakfast in bed for dad. They kept asking if they could start to eat their breakfast in bed. We might have to make that a new birthday tradition! Mark came to sacrament meeting with us and was treated to Alison, joining the rest of the primary kids, in a few dad songs. John did not want to go up, but he kept looking at Mark and asking him if he was liking it. When the kids were done singing, John said, "Didn't we do great dad?" I guess a song in your heart counts just as much as one coming out of your mouth. Mark had a great, relaxing day with the family and we had a wonderful day with our dad. We love you Mark.

John's tray: scrambled eggs, toast, cheeseburger plain no meat, string cheese, Diet Dr. Pepper

Alison's tray: cinnamon swirl bread, licorice, fruit leather, crackers, Diet Dr. "Pepsi"
Alison with dad
John and dad, John is the photographer
Happy campers!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Doughnuts with Dad

In honor of fathers day, the Kindergartners had a special Doughnuts with Dad morning. It started at 7:30 am in the gym. Mark came home the night before just so he and John could go together. John was so excited to have dad take him to school, play games, eat and make a craft with him. It was one day that John did not have to be prodded out of bed to get ready for school.
Mark is so not a morning person! So to my surprise he set his alarm that morning to wake him up extra early. I was excited to get to sleep in because I did not have to get John ready for the 6:55 am bus ride. Imagine my disbelief when Mark's alarm goes off at 5 am and he is dressed and ready to go by 5:30 am! And of course Mark is very good at getting ready quietly in the morning. NOT! He could not understand my frustration with him and why I was still in bed. Shouldn't I be up getting John ready? Then I pointed out to him the time and he realized that he had not re-set his phone to Pacific Time (his words). Which I still do not understand, because cell phones automatically set to the current time zone where ever you are. Anyways, somehow the alarm clock did not get set to the right time, so Mark was ready to go extra early.
The guys had a wonderful time together that morning and Mark enjoyed a nap that afternoon.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

John said

While playing outside with the neighbor kids, John was talking not so nice to one of them. I told him to come to me in the house for a minute so we could talk. He went to the side of the garage where I could not see him, but could hear that he was doing something.
me: "John, come in and talk to me for a minute please."
John: "Why? If you want to talk to me you come out here!"
me: "John, we do not talk that way to our mothers. Come here now or you can come in for the rest of the afternoon."
John: "I am busy. Would you just stop talking to me. If you want me, you come here!"
me: (walking to the garage now) "John Davis, you do not talk that way to me. What are you getting in to?"
John: (while throwing down his helmet that he had been trying to put on) "Just forget about it! You wouldn't understand anyways!"
me: "I would not understand what?"
John: "I saw this beautiful girl riding her scooter and I wanted to go and say Hi to her. But now she is gone and I missed her. So just forget about it!"
To which he stomps off out of the garage. Now I as the mother was left with a choice. Do I go after him and teach him a lesson about respect for his mother? Or do I turn around so that he does not see me laugh at his "beautiful girl" comment? I chose the latter. This girl by the way, is about 11 years old, lives somewhere in our neighborhood and apparently is beautiful.
I am left to further ponder: When did you get so brave in your disrespect to your mother? Why are you disrespectful to your mother? If you are 6 years old and trying to say hello to beautiful girls, what are we in for over the next 15 years? And I thought school was hard!