Friday, February 12, 2010

A Letter to Obama

Maddy has started the DARE program at school. I love when one of my kids gets so excited about something good (or bad in this case) and wants to do something about it. Maddy decided to write President Obama about the tobacco industry. Here is her letter.

Dear President Obama,

Every year, 400,000 Americans die from tobacco related causes. In addition to this, 3,000 more Americans die just from breathing the smoke of a cigarette. I care about my family and friends and I don’t want them to be one of the 403,000 of those people who die. So I want you to get rid of all the smoking and tobacco companies in America, and I have reasons why.

In cigarette smoke, there are 200 known poisons. What about the unknown poisons? Two of the known poisons include nicotine and carbon monoxide. Nicotine is a very strong poison that causes addiction. Carbon monoxide is like car exhaust. That’s what is killing so many people now. It’s also polluting the air and harming the environment. Not only does the cigarette smoke kill humans, but it kills plants and trees. We need trees to put oxygen in the air to survive. This eventually will kill all of us.

If someone smokes or uses tobacco, they are at great risk of dying. These products may cause lung, heart, throat, bladder, kidney or mouth cancers. They also cause heart and gum disease. If this doesn’t happen and the smoker plays sports, one minute they are about to kick a soccer ball into the net, the next, possibly off to the hospital. Why? The shortness of their breath from smoking. Smokers tend to have more colds and upper respiratory problems. This could lead to death. Another possible sickness is emphysema and may complicate pregnancy. Doctors would have less busy lives and focus on treating patients with other problems.

If people stop smoking now, it reduces the risk of dying or sickness. Their families won’t bug the smoker about quitting anymore. Interventions could stop and doctors could lead easier lives without cigarettes, tobacco, or cigars. There would be less pollution in the air and 403,000 more Americans could live each year. Instead of planning funerals, babies could be welcomed into the world.

For those people who work for smoking and tobacco companies would lose their job. I am well aware of this. But they could use the money from all the cigarettes people buy to open a therapy center to help worrying Americans. Instead of killing so many Americans, they could try helping them.

Right now, there are about 304,059,724 people in the U.S.A. If all of us smoked, America could be GONE. No one could survive with the toxic air and poisons. The age when people start smoking is now coming close to 6th grade. If this reaches 5th grade, this could be a real life nightmare. Kindergarteners could get one from fifth graders. Babies would be exposed to smoking because of their parents. Try living with parents who smoke. I don’t, but some kids do. And if parents do this, they really don’t care about the kids they have. This real life nightmare is closer then you think. In fact, possibly a few years with 403,000 Americans dying per year.

You may think this is a horrible idea, but when other countries see this, they could think this is a good idea. Those countries would stop. This could spread around the world. Just by this one letter I write to you now. Our world could be so much better.
In conclusion, you may think I’m just one crazy 5th grader who doesn’t know what she’s doing. But please consider this idea of saving 403,000 Americans lives every year. We could have 4,030,000 more Americans in the next 10 years. Imagine less busy doctors with easier live. Happy families with less worries and now, no 200+ poisons in the air.

A Fifth Grader with a Plan,

-Madison LaTurner
age 11

(some of this I researched with my D.A.R.E book and internet and most of this I did on my own)

Way to go, Maddy! We are proud of you for taking a stand!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Just When You Thought Life Couldn't Get Any Busier, the Bishop Calls

2010 has started off pretty busy for us. Matt is crazy busy with work. Besides his normal managerial responsibilities, he has been doing quite a bit of traveling. He and another co-worker have been visiting __________ in California. (At one point I was told I couldn't say anything about who it was but my mom knows so now everyone might know. Sorry mom...Dale made me say that! I'll have to see when I can say more.) It is pretty close to being a done deal. The big issue is that there is the potential of Matt traveling every week for the next year. They are trying to cut that back. In all his spare time (hahaha) he is still coaching Ryan and Cade's basketball teams. I think their last game is March 6th. All three boys have loved it but it will be nice when it is over.
I have still been subbing at the school. I don't know if at this point you can still call it subbing. I started November 30th. I finally took 2 days off last week and loved it!! I was finally able to clean just a bit and get some other important things done that have been ignored. I am enjoying being a co-chair on the PTA for the Recognition committee. My co-chair, Katie, and I put together a hot chocolate bar for the staff. They loved it! It was so fun to listen to them and actually hear how appreciative they are. We have put a lot of work into it but it has been worth it!
I really didn't think we had many more hours in our day but apparently the bishop did. Bishop Lee stopped by a couple weeks ago and asked if I would be willing to accept a calling as Relief Society president. When he called to set up the appointment, I listed in my head the many reasons why I felt like I could say no. When the bishop is sitting across from me the only thing that comes out is 'yes'. That was 2 weeks ago and so far so good. I really really am feeling the support of the sisters in our ward. I am so excited to serve these ladies. I have the best counselors, the best secretary and the best Visiting Teaching Coordinator ever!
In the middle of all this, Ryan turned 9! He was able to invite some of the neighborhood boys over to watch a movie and have ice cream cake. After basketball is over we will take the kids to Great Wolf Lodge as his big birthday gift. It has been fun to see Ryan grow. He is so much like his Dad. Same smarty pants attitude. We love you, Ryan!

This past weekend we were able to have my Mom and Dad and my sister, Sara, from Boise come visit. Saturday morning we went out to breakfast at the Maltby Cafe..yummy! The boys got to show off their amazing basketball skills to our visitors. Maddy got to show off how tall she is getting.