Monday, March 22, 2010

Picture Vomit!

Here are some pics I need on here for the record.

Some cute pics of Ella and her best buddy.Giving her daddy a "biiiiiiiiig kiss"!
I straightened Ella's hair for the first time the other day. She looked so cute, but I prefer the fro!
My little sis turned 23.She's gorgeous and single!Visiting auntie at work (The Garden Restaurant).
She loves to see the temple.
Our cute nephew Losepeli turned 8!
Sita was lucky enough to get to baptize him!I took Ella and my sister Maggie to Disney On Ice.
If you know Maggie it won't surprise you that she chose the Mater souvenir.
Ella of course chose Tinkerbell. Don't mind the snow cone all over her face.Nikki couldn't resist when I told her we were going.
Ella and I went to the Zoo last week. The weather was PERFECT!
Here we are on the train!The gorilla was sleeping with his butt in the air and Ella just kept saying "stinky poo".The Merry-Go-Round. Ella about choked me to death. She would not let go of my neck.Ella's favorite...the tigers!She loved the real ones, and apparently the fake ones too.She thought she was so brave.
She was mesmerized by the Mommy and Baby Elephants.I LOVE this picture!

Monday, March 15, 2010

A Small Observation

The other day I needed to go out to the car to grab something. As I headed for the door, Ella stopped me and we had this conversation:

Ella: Dad, you going to eBay?
Me: No, honey. I'm just going to the car.
Ella: Ella go to eBay?
No: No honey. I'm just going to the car. I'll be right back.
Ella: oh, no eBay?
Me: No Bear. I'm just going to the car.
Ella: ok...ummm...I wanna...umm...hambuger....and umm...some milk and...umm
Me: Honey, I'm not going to the store. Just to the car.
Ella: Ok. Love you dad
Me: (laugh) Love you too Ella bear.

As I walked to the car and back, I thought about this little conversation. It was funny because it gave me a little window into my funny little girl's mind. More importantly, it reminded me that my actions--whether intended or not--are being monitored at all times.

From that conversation, I learned that my daughter is aware that when I leave, most of the time it's to go to where I work, eBay. I know she doesn't understand why I go to eBay, but she does understand that when I leave her, it's a good chance that eBay's where I'm going. I can also tell that she thinks eBay's somewhere I want to be. She always wants to come with me to eBay. She's come inside a couple times and loves it even though all she's ever done is sit with me at my desk while I grab a couple things.

I also learned that she thinks if I'm not going to eBay, the next most likely place is to get food. For those who might have been confused by what she was saying on the conversation above, let me explain. She was putting in an order. Like I said in the previous post, Shay and I love food. Obviously, by Ella's observation, I go out to get food a lot--whether it be groceries or fast food. Just like when I ask Shalie if she wants anything while I'm out, Ella puts in her order. If I'm not going to eBay, it must be to get food. That's got to be a statistic somewhere at some fat camp: If going to get food is in your top 2 reasons for leaving your house, you're probably fat.

While it may seem like a pretty simple conversation, it really opened my eyes to what those 2 beautiful, little eyes see everyday. It also made me want to be better. While she may not have all the "whys," she does have a great grasp of the "whats." Ella sees me leave everyday and she assumes that where I go is a good place. A place where people want to be. A place where she wants to be. She also assumes that if I'm not going to that place, that I'm going to go get food for our family; to provide for them. Ella assumes that I'm only in good places and doing good things. I'm productive. I'm on the right path. I'm taking advantage of life.

It made me ask myself, " do I live up to those assumptions?"

All I could think of was, "you better."

Must be the universe talking to the Ripley's again. Leave it to a 2 year old to give you a better perspective on yourself. Children are like super clean, empty glasses, vacant of substance but so clean and innocent that all you can see is your own reflection. Life's full of irony.

Anyway, I was comforted by one thing. Then end of the conversation did bear one assumption that I can definitely admit to immediately:

Ella: Ok. Love you Dad


Love you too Ella bear.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

What's For Dinner and Are You Sure You Want to Eat It?

There are two things the Ripley's love: Food and Documentaries. We have seen virtually every documentary at the video store--bar the few rated R films (I'll have to blog about our debate with Rated R movies another time). We also eat out WAY too much.

So when people started to make documentaries about the food industry, naturally, Shay and I were all over it. While we loved these movies, they definitely changed the way we think about our food. Shalie's seriously thinking about becoming a vegetarian and I am seriously thinking about getting diet Dr. Pepper instead of regular to go with my 3 big macs, 2 cherry pies, and a partridge in a pear tree.

Anyway, you may have seen these, but if you haven't, you definitely should check them out:

Super Size Me

This is probably the most famous of the 3 and most of you may have seen it, but it's still a good one. Super Size Me is one man's journey to cardiac arrest by way of a McDonald's diet. His one rule is that everything he eats for 30 days has to be from McDonalds. If he wants breakfast, it has to be off McDonald's menu. If he wants some fruit, it has to be off the McDonalds Menu. If he wants some water, it has to be from McDonalds. It's pretty amazing to see what a Big Mac and fries can do to you. Be sure to check out the special features on this one.

King Corn

This is the story of two young Documentarians who wanted to find out about Americas number one grain and its effect on American Society. The movie demonstrates how much corn we eat and--more specifically--how much of our food is corn. They also go into how much money can be made farming corn, how different "farming" is compared to what it's thought to be, and how much money you can make growing it. It's crop full of information.

Sorry. I know that was corny.


Ok. I'll stop.

Food Inc.

This is probably our favorite of the three movies. Food Inc basically covers what both Super Size Me and King Corn cover, but also adds even more to the crazy situation in our society. It goes over the power of the multi-billion dollar food corporations, their shady practices, and the deadly effects of unregulated food distribution. And, yep, it's directly related to the government (jerks).

These are definitely some great choices and they may even change the way you live your life.

Food for thought.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Life, Liberty, and Property

Some of you may have heard this phrase before. It was actually used in the Declaration of Colonial Rights which was created in 1774 to respond to what Americans called the Intolerable acts which were basically laws that England created to put the Americans further under the crown's control (don't worry this isn't going to be a history lesson).

What makes this phrase interesting is the much more well known phrase that was used 2 years later in our Declaration of Independence: Life, Liberty, and The Pursuit of Happiness.

It's funny to think that at one time "property" was substituted for happiness. My first reaction to that was, "how materialistic of them."

But then I got thinking.

Shalie and I have recently been looking for a house to buy. Luckily, I recently received a promotion at eBay that put us in a position where we're financially able to get into a house. The best part is we found one! We're extremely excited and can't wait to move in!

This is our new home! It's in West Jordan and you can't tell from this picture, but it's got a gigantic yard. It's perfect for us right now. We got a good deal so that makes it even more exciting.

The entire time we've been married, we've always talked about owning our own home. It's definitely been at the top of our list of goals. For me personally, it's something I've wanted my entire life, mostly because it's actually something I've never had. I've never lived in a house that I or my family owned. We've always had someone on the other side of the wall. I've always been a renter. Never owned any property.

That's what made me think of this phrase. When the owner of the house accepted our offer, it felt like property and happiness were the same thing. No more need to turn down the game because of the neighbors. No more shoveling someone else's driveway. No more working to pay for someone else's property. No more lost dollars for someone else's responsibility.

In a sense, it's freedom. Freedom that I've dreamed about my entire life.

I know it sounds crazy, but I've always wanted to take care of my own yard. I hear a lot of people moan and groan about having to mow the lawn. Well, when you've never had one, you kind of feel left out. Shalie thinks I'm crazy( especially because our back yard is HUGE), but I honestly can't wait to take care of it: and the main reason is because it's mine. My property.

Now, I do want to clarify that I don't think property is happiness. It's still just material. Still temporary. What I am saying is that this particular property is a major landmark on The Ripley Family's pursuit to happiness. I can, to a point, see why they used the "property" phrase. I mean, in the end the pursuit of happiness is always about property--ownership of something. Whether you're trying to find who you are, the purpose of life, or your mansion in the sky, you're looking for property.

Maybe they weren't so far off.

Monday, March 1, 2010

The Bachelor: Making Booty-Call-Fairy Tales Happen

"I don't know what it is, but something just doesn't feel right."

That was Jake's answer to Tenely.


What didn't feel right?

Maybe we don't want to know.

The finale (which I didn't watch) apparently ended up with our Prince Charming choosing his princess Vienna.

"I have never had this much heat in a relationship," Jake said of Vienna. "It's like a fairy tale every day."

I mean, he does have a point. Fairly tales are about how passionate the bedroom is. Ariel would be some shriveled up vegetable thingy in Ursula's house if she hadn't been so forward trying to get Eric to kiss her all the time (He took like 3 days before he put out...whatev). I mean, Rapunzel let her prince pull her hair the first time he met her. Is this really what we're telling our children? If you want to end up like sleeping beauty, your booty needs to be on duty?

Maybe it's just me, but that doesn't sound right.

Anyway, I'm really happy the show ended this way. Mostly because it proves I'm right. What's funny is homeboy didn't even try to pretend why he chose her. He just said it.

With that said, I hope they live happily ever after...

for the next 8 months or so.