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Saturday, October 18, 2008

Not on topic...

...but so important! Yes on Prop 8.
I had a really hard time with the issue of gay marriage in the past. I have a few friends who have struggled with lifestyle choices and a ton of co-workers who are happily out. (Obviously, in my line of work.) I never really had a problem with how other people wanted to live their lives. It didn't seem to affect me personally, so who am I to say...what have you... etc... etc... I know what I believe personally so what does it matter what others... I don't want to make waves... etc...etc...
See how I can never get a concrete thought out about it? I am always so worried about offending other people who believe differently than me. So then I read this article. Lovely Alison linked to it in her blog and I can't thank her enough.

The Divine Institution of Marriage

It's a little long, but it covers the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saint's official stand on the issue. Which is a loving and understanding position. I get frustrated when people accuse the church of being hateful or cruel to those dealing with homosexuality or abortion or other sensitive issues. Yes, people in the church are human and sometimes say horrible things, but that is never condoned. Which is why I so often tread lightly around those topics. I don't want someone of another faith or persuasion to judge the entire religion based on my uneducated musings.
So- read this article. I'm not trying to change any one's position, I just want people to understand that by not supporting same-sex marriage, I (and others) am not a bigoted hate-filled person. I don't think less of anyone dealing with the personal issue of sexual orientation. I don't want their life to be any harder than it already is. But I don't believe that same-sex marriage should be legal. The article explains why so many Mormons are now against supporting legalized same-sex marriages when in the past we have usually stood on the side-lines. It has far reaching effects that I hadn't even considered. Adoption rights, college housing, and even our legal status as a religion to name a few. The Catholic church closed it's Boston chapter of it's adoption services because it would have to include the same services to gay couples. No religion should be forced to cater to lifestyles not supported in their doctrines.

I also found this link interesting, though not as solid as the LDS News article.

Massachusetts' Diversity Laws

So there is my most political blog to date. I hope everyone that reads this blog isn't put off by it. Again, I am not trying to change any one's mind. I just want people to understand this side of the issue.
Trust me, I will be back to baby news and fall crafts in no time.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Ultrasound #1

So my original ultrasound is scheduled for the 23rd of October, but I couldn't wait that long. And for $30 you can find out the gender and get some pictures...so duh. Yesterday we went and here are the results! Best $30 I've ever spent. The first one is my favorite as it looks as if the baby is chatting. The last one has the "results" so don't look at that one or read the end if you don't want to know. However I will be blogging about it in the future, so good luck with that.
P.S. My dad doesn't want to know, so everybody keep it from him if you can.

Little alien faces, just in time for Halloween.


Long spine, good, good. Looks normal. I felt the baby for the first time this week too.
Ta da!
I was totally wrong! I could have sworn it was a boy. I originally wanted a girl, but I got so used to the idea of boys that I was excited for either. We even have a whole bunch of boy stuff. Not because we were shopping for a boy, it was just the odds and ends that we found were all blue, sports or robot related. However, I am really stoked to start sewing and planning. And we are always in the market for names. We have a list, but none seem perfect. I like old fashioned or foreign names, Clayton likes funny ones. A good compromise of those three would be "Helga" or "Broomhilda". So we obviously need some help. Anyhow- More as it happens!

Friday, October 03, 2008

Chicago!

Hello! I had a 25 hour layover in Chicago so Clayton flew in to join me in exploring the city. We had a wonderful guide in Clayton's old friend Tosh. He has been living there for over 7 years and knew all the ins and outs. We took the train into town and met up with him at the Art Institute of Chicago. We had about a half hour before the museum opened so Tosh showed us the Millennium Park about a block away. They have some great public art pieces like this giant chrome jelly-bean. You can walk all the way under it, and take some crazy pictures.

Here is my self portrait of Clayton and I.

And here are Tosh and Clayton under the bean. It reminded me of James and the Giant Peach.
Here Clayton and I are in front of the Art Institute's bronze lions.
There are hundreds of notable works here that even the least knowledgeable person would know. Like American Gothic by Grant Wood.

Sadly an entire wing was closed for renovations so we didn't get to see a few key pieces that we were looking forward to. Like The Old Guitarist by Picasso. It is Clayton's favorite piece ever. Oh well, next time. Still there was plenty to enjoy. Like John Singer Sargent, one of my favorite artists. I thought I would take my four month tummy shot next to this one, but we didn't quite get it all in the shot. Um, ya- cuz' it's that big. Sure I'm kidding, but not really. I am getting bigger by the minute. I may just have to blog about my belly button alone... but I digress. Back to the art.

Nighthawks by Edward Hopper.

A Sunday on La Grande Jatte by Georges-Pierre Seurat. Can you believe he was only 26 when he painted this? Makes me feel like a slacker. Non-art fans may recognize it from Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Which is required watching for a trip to Chicago. As is Adventures in Babysitting. Oh wait, is that just me?
Downstairs they have an entire exhibit of about 60 miniature rooms. Like doll houses on acid. These were incredible! Every fabric was hand woven , every chair hand carved. They looked so real. Pictures don't do the least bit of justice, but I included two so you could see the scale next to Clayton's gigantic head. I'm kidding- his head is normal sized, I'm the one that can't find hats that fit.

They had ones done in every major historical style of decorating. Did I mention they were amazing?

After the museum we walked downtown a bit for lunch. We hit the Billy Goat Tavern, a Chicago staple. They serve great burgers. It's a famous place due to the the eccentric former owner Billy Sianis. He actually owned a goat and in 1945 bought seats for himself and his odd pet for the world series at Wrigley field. They denied entrance for the goat, and Mr. Sianis cursed the Cubs that they would never win a championship as long as he lived. And they never did.

After lunch we headed up to the Hancock Center. We decided to go to the top there instead of the Sears Tower as it is almost the same height, and Tosh knew a secret to get us up free. (Completely legal.) They views were astounding. If you are headed to Chicago it is totally worth it to make time in your schedule for this. Here are Tosh and Clayton.
Here is one of the views of Lake Michigan. Note the sand at the bottom of the picture.
Well here we are on that very sand! A beautiful little beach in downtown Chicago. It is such an amazing city. After the Hancock Center we walked along the lake to the Navy Pier.

Here are Tosh and Clayton enjoying the view at the end of the pier.

We took a Ferris Wheel ride on the pier to rest our legs and enjoy the views.
Here I am next to the elevated train (the El). It is loud.
And here are Clayton and his tired, pregnant wife in front of the Sears Tower (sort of). We did it all in about seven hours and I still had to work my flight home that night. We walked our legs off- like we do in any city we are trying to conquer in one day. It's worth it for the experiences, but oh, we hurt today. A million thanks to Tosh for his expertise. We had a great time!
And here is the Sears Tower from the ground. It's a bit tall. You can't even see the top from this angle. We loved Chicago. It's like New York with a Seattle twist. Of course we had the most beautiful fall weather ever. I've heard the winters can bite, so maybe we will have to try it out then to get the whole feel.

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