Thursday, June 27, 2013

Discovering Scuba

One important item on my bucket list is that I really want to get Scuba Certified.  However, to maximize my certification, I really want Robyn to get certified as well.  That way, we can go diving on vacations and have lots of adventures together.

I had it all planned out.  We would take a class together and then live happily ever after.  (I know, it's a very detailed plan.  I hope you were able to follow that.)  Unfortunately, Robyn had a concern with this plan.  She was pretty sure that Scuba is too scary and she might die.

Amazon has a little program they've started to compete with City Deals and other similar companies, called Amazon Local.  They sent me a deal for a local dive shop where they could do a "Scuba Discovery" class for $10 / person.

When I saw that my heart leaped for joy!  This was the perfect compromise.  I asked Robyn if she would be willing to go discover Scuba with me.  I told her she only had to commit to one hour and then we could either confirm that it's much too scary and I would never bother her about it again, or she would discover it's pretty cool and we could get certified together.

The place is called Dive Utah and it's located in Holladay.  It was a little inconvenient because the class started at 6, so I had to leave work early to drive through traffic and get there on time.  But we made it safely, so all was well.

When we arrived, the first 30 minutes was a classroom atmosphere.  They explained all the equipment, they explained basic principles of diving.  (The most important thing we learned is to never stop breathing, because if you drift up or down while holding your breath, the change in pressure could cause serious problems.)

We had to pass a little quiz before we could get in the water.  I took the quiz before we started and got 100%.  But if that wasn't easy enough already, he went through the quiz question by question and told us the answers, so we could just fill it out as he told us if we wanted.

We finally got to get in the water.  It was just a swimming pool, but there were still crazy marine life forms such as a real live Scuba certification class.

The first thing we did in the water was put on all our gear.  As soon as I got it on, I realized that wearing a big air tank on your back is kind of like being a ghostbuster, with their big nuclear reactors on their backs.  Naturally, I shared that with the whole class.  "It feels like I'm a ghostbuster!"

Only seconds later, he had us put the regulator in our mouths and try breathing through it, above the water. Instantly, I knew that I had become Darth Vader.  (They must have based Darth Vader's breathing on a scuba regulator.)  I immediately regretted using up my geek moment talking about Ghostbusters.  Luckily, the teacher was either as geeky as me or he just knew his audience, because he said, "Luke, I am your father."  It filled me with gladness.

Once we were geared up, he showed us some basic skills.  We had to show that we could take the regulator out of our mouth (while still breathing out, because you never stop breathing) and then put it back in and clear it of water.  We also had to be able to clear water out of the mask.

Finally, he just let us swim around the swimming pool.  I definitely need work, I would be crawling along the bottom and would push the button to gain some buoyancy, then I would magically be at the top of the water.  After that, I would push the button to release air and I would be back on the bottom.  It would seem I need to learn balance.

After swimming around for a while, the class was over.  Then came the most important part.  We grabbed a camera for a photo op.
Robyn with some underwater love
Not to be outdone, I threw up some double love.
We're just the cutest little scuba couple.
The best part of the whole thing?  Robyn has agreed to get certified with me.  That means we have a future filled with diving all over the world.

Saturday, June 15, 2013


It was my first week off for Summer break and it was wonderful!  I got to sleep in, clean the house, exercise, and be with family.  Here are some of the highlights from the week.

Cleaned the house and my classroom:
Ok so that may not be very exciting, but it sure made me relax so I could enjoy the rest of my time off.

I have been doing ok at it during the school year, but this week I was consistent and it made a fabulous difference.  I have been stuck at a plato for the last 2 weeks and FINALLY I reached one of my goals.  I have now lost about half of the weight I want to for the year.  So far I am on track and doing well!

I visited my sister and helped my brother's family (he had a small surgery and his wife is still having pre-term labor).  I love just hanging out and talking with them.  I sure am lucky to have such fun siblings (My brother and his wife are both doing fine).

I also had fun having a girls night with my sister-in-law while Jeff and his brother went out for a boy's adventure.  I am so proud of my new found quilting abilities.  I'm still not amazing but I did the whole thing in one night.  Who knew I could do that!

Keeping the garden growing and playing with the camera:
My flowers and veggies are still growing!  I picked up my camera one afternoon and started to have some fun with taking pictures.  It feels so nice to be able to have some quiet time to do things like that again.



I love my students and I was sad to see them go (I only cried a little this year) but Summer is a great adventure and I can't wait to see what other events will take place!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

I'm Feeling 32!

(Side note from Robyn: before you begin... Jeff had his birthday on Memorial Day this year.  He wrote this then, but I didn't post it until now.  I was going to write about his day, but Jeff is a much more entertaining writer then I am.  I just get to take credit for most of the pictures)

Sometime early this morning, I turned 32 years old.  I don't know the exact time, but if you'd like specifics you can call my mother.  The word on the street is that she was present at the time, and surprisingly enough, played a fairly central role in the proceedings.

I've been 32 for less than 24 hours, so I admit that my sample size is a little small.  But, from what I can tell, 32 is pretty awesome.  Based on my limited experience today, here is what you can expect when you are 32.

1. When you're 32, you don't have to go to work
2. When you're 32, you get breakfast in bed.

3. When you're 32, things like this will magically appear in your wallet.

4. When you're 32, you get to see a rattlesnake.
I know it's not a great picture.  Perhaps when you're 32, you won't be a good photographer.
5. When you're 32, you still have to watch your wife shop.
I told her I was documenting this, so you all know that I love her enough to go shopping on my birthday
6. At least when you're 32, your wife buys you a DVD in exchange for going shopping with her.

7. When you're 32, your wife will scream when she sees a lizard.  (I think it's a vocabulary issue.  She describes the lizard as "wiggly" which she appears to believe is a synonym of "scary".)

8. When you're 32, you get to see a pretty waterfall
This is Grove Creek Falls

9.  When you're 32, the river above the falls is even prettier than the falls.
Sorry the beauty is ruined by having me in the middle
10.  When you're 32 you get to have a picnic with your super cute wife.

11.  When you're 32, your wife will scream when she sees a rock.
        In her defense, she was a little jumpy after such scary things as a rattlesnake (potentially scary) and a lizard (not scary, but "wiggly"), and she insists there was something more than a rock, but I saw nothing.

12.  When you're 32, you receive great amounts of love on facebook.

13.  When you're 32, your wife does her best to make you feel special every second.

As you can see, being 32 is pretty awesome.  I highly recommend it.