Monday, December 28, 2009

2009 Holiday Season: Part One

I've been really bad about blogging recently. I'm not sure what's come over me, but I haven't had the fire to blog like I used to. Am I getting sick of blogging? Certainly not. I blame it on the season. It's getting darker earlier now and ... you can't blog in the dark.

Okay. Lame excuse. Regardless, I'm filling you in on the past few weeks of holiday festivities. Here goes.

First, we had a Christmas party with the family.

And at that Christmas party we had a talent show. Some of us painted on our chins...

And some of us played the Ukulele...

Some of us read Christmas stories...

And some of us sang and played the guitar...

And some of us did a Christmas rap about Santa...

Then it got really foggy, so I went out at about 1:00am to take pictures.

A few days later, we took a roadtrip to Vegas to watch the Cougars go bowling.

The clouds were spectacular on the way down.

The wind was spectacular as well...

It was the coldest, windiest football game I've ever attended.

The guys holding the flag were nearly blown away.

And BYU ended up blowing out the Beavers.

We woke up the next morning to a beautiful sunrise on the strip.

And doodled on the newspaper as we drove home.

Part two coming soon!


Sunday, December 27, 2009


The global warming, man-made carbon disaster, green movement agenda was recently pushed to greater heights with the whole Copenhagen Alliance thing. You're hearing more and more blatant, in-your-face style propaganda rather than the occasional hippy rant like it was before. What I am about to show you, however, is ridiculous. Embarrassing for even the greenest of tree huggers...

I present to you, the Build-A-Bear "Under the North Star" Christmas special - a little animated feature kids could watch on the Build-A-Bear website.

My favorite line? "It could happen the day after tomorrow!" HAHA! She might as well throw this up for the kids to watch:

That's enough of my rant. Think of the children, though. Must they have this crap shoved in their faces?


Monday, December 21, 2009


Sometimes you see things on the internet that just make you stop and think, "What the hell?"

I found this while perusing the "Free" section of the ksl classifieds...

The only connection I can make as to how this belongs in the free section of the classifieds is that this person wants to be "free" from the harassment of betty johnson. Why would you put this in the classifieds? So strange...


Wednesday, December 9, 2009


Went out to our balcony today and took some pictures of the icicles. And ya know what? I don't care if they're a hazard to the community. I love big icicles.


Sunday, December 6, 2009

Love thine BCS

Courtesy of

Tonight the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) found, once again, a way to short-change the little guys, namely TCU and BSU. Instead of pairing them up in match-ups with teams from BCS conferences, they've matched them with each other in what is, essentially, a rematch of last year's Poinsettia Bowl. This was a blatant effort by the BCS to prevent a scenario in which two non-BCS teams could finish the season unbeaten, sending a vicious blow to the precious system currently in place.

Initially, this angered me. Like so many of the shenanigans they've pulled in the past, I felt the bitter sting of injustice stirring inside me. However, while watching the Christmas Devotional later tonight, this scripture was mentioned:

Matthew 5:44 - "But I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you."

What a great scripture for the Christmas season! It rang true to me on so many levels, but especially with the whole BCS thing. If the BCS is the enemy (and they are) then we should love them. We may not agree with how things are run. We may not be happy with the pairings in the bowls. We may feel that the whole BSU-TCU thing is a filthy cop-out that leaves nothing to be proven and drastically cheapens the work that both teams have put into the season. Nevertheless... *deep breath*... hostility is not the way to enact change. Let us search for other options (namely a playoff) with love in our hearts.

After all, it is the Holiday season. :)


Saturday, December 5, 2009

White Christmas

Don't you love it when you are enlightened to a mystery that has enshrouded your mind for years?

Many years ago I saw the holiday classic, "Christmas Vacation," for the first time. As the film builds its final crescendo toward the heartwarming ending, this scene plays out...

**Warning: If you are offended by language, skip the clip. You'll still understand what I'm talking about by my description below. The clip is really funny, though.**

I'd always wondered what the reference was to the line, "We're gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby danced with Danny $&#@ing Kay!"

And tonight, my friends, I found it...

Bing Crosby dancing with Danny bleeping Kay. From the movie, "White Christmas." My life is now just a little bit more fulfilled. :)


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Pics from The Game

Pictures from the 26-23 victory over the U of U on Saturday night....

Tyler walks toward LaVell Edwards Stadium as we head to the game.

Andrew and Shannon just before the game began.

Two classy Utah fans sat near us. They were so dejected after the game.

The stadium was absolutely packed.

The winning helicopter. :)

Ashlyn and Steve sat across the stadium, so I called him on his cell, we found each other, and I asked him to smile in my direction for a few seconds. It turned out nicely!

Tyler wasn't so far away, but was just as cooperative. Sadly, Dad was nowhere to be found when this picture was taken.

Stormed the field when the Cougars scored. Absolutely euphoric.

Shook hands with Brian Kariya. Told him he'd had a great season. His response, "Really? Well, thank you!"

Andrew George in the post-game interview. Had the opportunity to shake his hand as well.


Monday, November 30, 2009

Red and Blue makes Purple

The rivalry between BYU and Utah is one of the strongest, most emotional rivalries in the country. Anyone who disagrees has either never been to a BYU-Utah football game, or refuses to accept that anything outside the BCS is worthy of national consideration. The vehement fervor with which either side defends their team is borderline fanatical on the strong side and at the very least - intelligently opinionated. With eleven of the past thirteen games decided by a touchdown or less, the atmospheric tension present at the game palpably hisses in the background - a fuse smoldering restlessly into a crate of dynamite. Looking into the eyes of BYU and Utah fans alike, you can almost smell the acrid fury of said fuse, and when the crowd erupts with the game winning touchdown, a very sudden and tangible explosion can be felt.

Moments like these are what make a rivalry great. Emotion stands on the brink of rejoicing or mourning, elation or heartbreak. But with such dedication and enthusiasm comes the ugly face of hatred. Some focus too much on how little they like the fans, players, coaches, etc. of the opposing team, nearly to the point of forgetting to cheer for their own. Some dwell too much on the injustices of the past to the point of clouding their mind of all reason and civility in their interaction with "the enemy." Most, I will say, behave well, act reasonably, and promote good sportsmanship. They throw playful banter back and forth, and place bets that often result in mild, prankish humiliation. Sadly, as is so often the case in life, the good side of things saunters by unnoticed, while the ugly side takes the spotlight.

On Saturday night, Max Hall spewed hatred for Utah after the game, creating an instantaneous rivalry firebomb, and eliciting controversy that has stained the airwaves since. His ill-chosen words were spoken in a moment of passion - something we've all done at one time or another - but unlike the rest of us, his words were immediately branded into rivalry lore - fuel for one side, shame for the other. The worst of this news is that it sparks even more hatred among fans. Even those who try to remain reasonable (like me) find themselves having to take sides in a discussion about whether or not Max's comments were justified, over the line, classless, etc. He has since come out with a revision of/apology for his statement which has quelled most of the fire.

I'm not going to go into my position on his comments. That's all in the past now and I've spent entirely too much time facebooking about it anyway. I only hope that in the future, BYU and Utah fans and players alike can think twice before hurling any hateful comments at each other. Enjoy the rivalry for what it is. Be reasonable about it, though. And above everything...

...don't be a hater. :)

Now, let's all relive that incredible moment wherein the crowd exploded on Saturday night. (Ute fans... better luck next year.)


Monday, November 23, 2009

Thankfulness, continued...

I've not been very good at keeping up with the goal I made of writing a thankfulness blog post every day, so today I've decided to go with a more varied, visual post.

I'm thankful for my body. (Thank you, Slim Goodbody, for standing in for this.) I'm thankful for the mobility it gives us, for the ability it has to heal, and for the incredible strength and resilience it shows. I'm thankful for the way it fights infection and sickness and for the little conveniences it provides like thumbs. The human body is a wonder.

I'm thankful for the unique properties of (water) ice. It is the only known non-metallic substance to expand when it freezes. This is important because it allows ice to float on top of water instead of sinking when it freezes. If the opposite were true, the oceans, rivers, and lakes of the world would freeze from the bottom up and life would very likely not exist. I'm thankful for little quirks like that in the world of physics that make life possible for us.

I'm thankful for dreaming! (And likewise thankful for funny inspirational posters) Really, though. Dreams allow us to experience crazy adventures, thought provoking situations, possible real-life scenarios, all in a vivid realism that is nearly identical to waking life, but without any of the ramifications or consequences of actual living. Dreaming is amazing.

I'm thankful for football! I love the hard hits, the break-aways, and the diving catches. I love the fight songs of college football and the celebrations in the NFL. But more so, I love it because I have so many memories of going to BYU games with Dad when I was only 8 or 9, watching big games with Grandpa and Grandma at Thanksgiving, and getting the family together for a feast of appetizers for the Super Bowl. Also, I love that this week is rivalry week and I'll be so thankful for a win when the Cougars crush the Utes in Provo this year. :)

That's all for now.


Thursday, November 19, 2009

I Love Nature

I just bought a new plant from ikea. It's a Neanthe Bella Palm. I'd never owned a plant before, which I've come to regret, because plants can liven up a room in a way that is unmatched by even the best decoration. It's so refreshing to see something green and lush and healthy when all that is outside is turning brown and hardening for the winter.

I'm so thankful for nature. As an avid hiker, camper, and explorer I adore the outdoors. Not like a tree-hugging, granola-eating, hippie liberal, wack job does. I certainly don't cry when a tree is cut down, but I've come to realize that - for the sake of my well-being - I need an escape every once in awhile into the twisting vaults of a sandstone canyon, the sparkling turquoise of an alpine lake, or that point where the endless blue of the sky meets the naked peak of a mountain. Nature brings to mind a sense of peace, wonder, and reverence that does wonders for my health, mentally and physically. I'm thankful to live in a state where the landscape is so varied, and I'm thankful to God for creating it all this way.

Here's to exploring National Parks we've never been to, hiking to heights we've never seen, and swimming in water we never knew could be so cold.


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Yes. I Love Technology.

**As we are now 9 days from Thanksgiving (including today) I thought I'd dedicate each day, from now until Thanksgiving, to what I am so thankful for in my life.**

I love technology. I would never write a song about it. That's just not me. But I did want to dedicate one of my thankfulness posts to technology because of it's far-reaching effects on my life.

Consider the following:

I carry, in the palm of my hand, a device that allows me to communicate instantaneously with anyone in the world who also carries a device of similar craftsmanship. It gives me instant access to a gargantuan database of information - one that holds nearly every answer to every question you could ever ask. It takes pictures, tells me where I am on a map, and stores libraries of music - playing them with clarity that would make Thomas Edison applaud from his grave.

In my home, I have a machine that fits neatly on my desk that effortlessly performs 357,230 operations per second. It calculates incredible mathematical equations in a fraction of a fraction of a fraction of the time it takes the average person to do it. It allows me to view news from around the world without the need to subscribe to a paper. With it I can send a letter to anyone I'd like at the speed of light and without the need for a stamp. Through it I can express my creativity with mediums, images, and techniques without ever needing to go to an arts and crafts store. I can acquire an entire song in seconds, view it's waveform, and edit it as I please with a few simple clicks of a mouse. I am no longer limited by my resources, but only by the time and ability I have to learn.

And for that, I love technology. I am so thankful for the ways in which it makes our lives easier, more enjoyable, and more efficient. I'm thankful for the power it gives us to communicate, the ability it gives us to educate, and the quality of health that we enjoy because of it.

Here's to future advances in technology and the accompanying wonders and benefits that it will bring to our lives.


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Tyler's Birthday

My youngest brother, Tyler, turned 17 today! Aggh! I can't believe how time has flown. I'm so impressed with the person he has become, though. He's an amazing kid.

Tonight we all went up to Sandy for some dinner and cake and presents and such. Ty's dinner of choice was meatloaf, which was excellent. My mom did a stellar job there. After, we watched the Colts come from behind to beat the Patriots! Happy birthday to all of us!

This is what my camera saw.

Tyler blows out the candles while Steve gets WAY into the birthday song. Shannon captures the moment.

Can't remember what Dad was explaining here. Something to do with an old movie, I think.

This cake is full of chocolate and caramel and covered with whipped cream and toffee bars. Tell me that doesn't make you drool just a little bit...

Birthday balloons.

My two handsome brothers. Aww.


Sunday, November 8, 2009

A Stinky, Empty Box

This is not a picture of this scene, but actually the scene as it runs in real time. You can see them move really slowly if you look carefully for a few hours. The movie is just THAT slow.

Let's say Saturday night rolls around and you want to see a movie. More specifically, you want to see a really slow movie because... I dunno... maybe you have a lot of time on your hands. In addition to this, you want the movie to be filled with really bad atmospheric music - the kind of tinny, headache-inducing crap that tries to convey suspense, but can't because the plot is smoking a joint and can't really see the point of "going anywhere" or "doing anything." Let's assume that on top of this all you don't want to mess with technical things like character development and a well-written script. And as far as actors go, you prefer a pretty face to any semblance of talent. Cameron Diaz and/or James Marsden might fill this role perfectly.

If this sounds like something you're in the mood for, go see "The Box."

Otherwise, avoid it like the swine flu.


Booby Traps

It's fun, when you find the right materials, to set up booby traps in your house. Nothing dangerous or deadly. Just fun things to scare somebody. The other day, for example, I happened to find one of those semi-firework-ish noisemaker things (typically used on New Years Eve and other parties) and decided that I would tape it behind the door in Scott's bathroom. He's got a hook thing on the wall that practically begs to have an explosive device taped to it. I rigged it up so that the string would pull out when he closed the door to use the bathroom, causing the explosion to go off and (possibly) causing an early bowel movement. Once it was all in place I stood there and laughed, amazed by my ingenuity and the hilarity that would surely ensue when he closed the door.

Later that day he walked into the bathroom. I held my breath and waited for the expected BANG, but as he closed the door I heard only the familiar sound of tape ripping away from a failed booby trap. BAH.

Booby traps are still fun to make, even if they don't always work. :)


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Hooray for New Cleats

No Halloween make-up here. My new cleats rubbed the back of my feet completely raw.

Painful? Yes. Even more painful, though, was pulling my socks off afterward.

We ended up losing the game to a team we'd previously beaten, so we're out of the playoffs. I had a great time, though. And that, my friends, is what matters. :)