Thursday, December 23, 2010

Carter's special gift

Carter already received probably the best gift he could have asked for...a present from his school teacher that gives him a 'coupon' to turn in place of one homework assignment. He told me that maybe he would save it for 6th grade because homework is really hard in 6th grade. I let him know that it doesn't really work that way and that he will have to use this year.

Merry Christmas to everyone. Party all weekend long.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

How many people do you know?

When we moved back to Salt Lake City, I was excited to see old friends and see a lot of people that I knew. I quickly realized how many people that I do not know. I can go to the grocery store in my neighborhood and see 50 people and not know one of them. The new census just came out. There are 308,745,539 people in the United States. That is a heckuva lot of people that I do not know.

Just some other info - Utah is the 3rd fastest growing state and now has over 2.7 million residents. Nevada, Arizona, Utah and Idaho are the top 4. People love the West. Michigan and Rhode Island were the two slowest growing. And to think, just 100 years ago, there were less than 100 million 100 years, the US has added over 200 million people. And final note, this was the slowest population growth (in the past 10 years) in the US since the Great Depression.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Christmas shopping over the world wide interweb

How awesome is Amazon? I say that we buy 80% of our gifts thru Amazon. Pretty much anything you can think of, I have purchased thru Amazon (including toilet paper and tooth paste). Well, we ordered a poster for Carter's bedroom and we received it today. It came in a huge box. Take a look at the pic and you see the black tube on the far left of the box? That is the poster. The rest of the box is paper and nothing. I could have fit about 20 books into that box. Actually, I probably could have fit Carter and Becks into that box. Maybe even a small european car as well. Efficiency at its finest.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Time to honor the Gun

It is good to know that our legislature is hard at work. We all know that we have a State flower (no idea what it is), a State bird (seagull?) and other State things. Well, it is our lucky day because it appears that there is going to be a proposal to have a State gun. Yes, a State gun. How big of a trendsetter is the state of Utah? It appears that no other state has a State gun. Yay for us. Rep. Carl Wimmer has decided that he has nothing better to do than to propose a State gun and he has selected the Browning 1911 model (after Utah resident John Moses Browning who invented it). In a few years, I will be excited to also find out what our new State Cross-Bow is going to be.


Tuesday, December 7, 2010

rockin' Thanksgiving

Now for the obligatory Thanksgiving update. As usual, we spent the day before Thanksgiving making stuffing with Brodi's side of the family. Ashton stuffing consists of bread, sage and butter and it is fabulous. The kids love helping and the adults love snacking on it. It is generally a quieter affair with Brodi's side of the family, but we always have a great time.

We spent Thanksgiving with Brodi's family and then that evening we drove to our family ranch down in Central Utah, Castle Valley Outdoors. This has been a family tradition to go down the ranch for Thanksgiving weekend for well over a decade now. It is located just outside of Emery (about 45 minutes from Price). It is a working ranch as well as an executive retreat ranch so the accomodations are fabulous. There is the lodge which has 9 bedrooms and 9 bathrooms...then there are 3 apartments in a house each with its own bathroom and then there is another house with 3 bedrooms and a couple of bathrooms. Plenty of room to handle all of us, which by the size of our family is pretty impressive. The pic on the left is during the summer...while the pic on the right is from late November.

The Thanksgiving dinner is crazy. Though my brother and his family couldn't 3 sisters and their families as well as my other brother and his family - well, lets just say, that adds up to a whole lot of people.

We spent the days hiking, horseback riding, hiking some more, playing games (pool, cardgames, karaoke, campfire games and songs, etc.) and a lot of talking. I can safely say that Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Frakkin' Apples. Frakkin' Leaves.

I have a true love/hate relationship with the trees in our front yard. During the Spring and Summer, the trees are marvelous. It is literally 15 degrees cooler under our trees...neighbors come and hang out, nice shade, good times. Then late Fall hits and the trees decided to make our lives miserable. First off, they hold onto their leaves as long as they can (mid November, about 30% of the leaves have fallen), then when the first snowstorm comes, the trees laugh in our faces and start shedding their leaves like their lives depend on it (I don't know if any of that made much sense). I will be picking up leaves and apples until sometime in January.

The pictures of the kids above was from yesterday. Notice the shorts the boys were wearing (yeah, rather warm). The pictures here with the snow are from this morning...we got 8 inches of snow. Late this morning, the wind picked up and the leaves and apples came tumbling down. We now have enough applesauce to feed a homeless shelter.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Rice Cakes after a Workout? C'mon, go for something better than that

Nothing better than having a great workout at the gym and then be able to stop and grab a quick snack on your way out the door. Or maybe, come on in to the gym and have a tasty treat and then spend a couple of hours working it off. I am not sure who the genius is behind this all, but it truly is genius.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Haircuts + Video Games = Boys are happy

Our boys like their long, but eventually we have to cut it. When their hair is flowing down to their shoulders, it probably is a good time. We have tried to do the cutting ourselves, often to bad results. But we found Cookie Cutters. The boys get to play video games or watch movies while they get their hair cut. They hardly notice they are even getting their hair cut. 2nd thing they dislike - dentist office. I need to check with my brother in law to see if he has a Playstation for the boys.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Eat PopTarts and Lose Weight!

Ok, you have probably heard about the professor that lost 27 pounds in a couple of months on a diet of twinkies and doritos and other tasty foods. He did it by limiting his calorie intake to 1,800 calories a day. You check out his story by clicking HERE

So that got me thinking. You all know how much I love my Brown Sugar Pop Tarts, so wouldn't it just be smart of me to have 4 pop tarts a day, 1 Banbury Cross donut, a twinkie, 5 Tab colas 2 cinnamon bears. Think of all the weight that I could lose! Yeah, I am not going to do it, but it is pretty tempting realizing that PopTarts could make me an even sexier beast.

Monday, November 8, 2010

My post, just not on this blog

I had the wonderful chance to post on my lovely wife's blog. You can check it out here:

If you are not reading her blog on a regular basis, do so. It is always entertaining (moreso when she is writing and not me).

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Easy Directions for Traveling from Japan to China

I don't know why I found this so funny. But if you go to Google Maps and you ask how you get from Japan to China. You get the following directions. I got rid of quite a few of the directions to save space but look at #43. How can you not love Google? This route of driving and jet skiing will take 2 days and 11 hours.

1.Head north
750 m
2.Turn right toward 大門街道/国道152号線
190 m
3.Continue straight onto 大門街道/国道152号線
2.7 km
4.Turn left at 大和橋(交差点) onto中山道/国道142号線
Continue to follow 国道142号線
13.0 km

57 m
40.Turn left at 県道349号線
11.3 km
41.Continue onto 県道350号線
2.1 km
42.Turn left
1.4 km
43.Jet ski across the Pacific Ocean
782 km
44.Continue straight onto 塘后支路
400 m
45.Turn left at 塘后路
600 m

79.Take the ramp to 巉柳高速
500 m
80.Slight right at 巉柳高速
Partial toll road
37.2 km
81.Take exit 甘草店 toward 312国道/312國道
Partial toll road
1.2 km
82.Turn right at 312国道/312國道
15.9 km

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Rockin' the Vote

So, I voted yesterday. How much do I rock? I have a feeling though that my vote was basically zeroed out by pretty much everyone that I know. I have never checked the Vote one Party button but when I finished voting, I voted one party except for one position.

I still enjoy election night, but I miss those days in Washington DC. There is something about living in DC during this time of year that is electric. Politics is a way of life there...and working for the Federal Government was always intersting to see how it affected the different agencies. We do live in a pretty great country when we actually do get to vote for the status quo or vote for change.

Monday, October 25, 2010

C and B

OK, so here is a bit of a family post, focusing on the boys:

Carter - he gets a little allowance every week and he has been saving up. This is him with the money seperated into dollars so that he can purchase a new video game. He was very pleased. The picture on the right is him dribbling the basketball. He really can handle the basketball pretty well...some between the legs dribbling, etc. He had me count his dribbles to see how many he could do without messing up. 1,083 dribbles. His record is 1,113. It took him over 10 minutes to dribble that many. I was more tired than he was when he was finished.

The other day he invited a friend over and I am listening to his phone call. He asks if he wants to come over to our house. He is quiet and he then, nearly shouting, says into the phone: "booyah! THAT IS WHAT I AM TALKING ABOUT.' Yep, he was a bit excited.

Becks - His hair just keeps getting longer. We decided to trim over his ears. We wanted to see how long he could get it, but it keeps getting into his eyes. And yes, we do get people asking us - so, are you going to give him a haircut. I just respond, 'Not sure, we haven't decided yet.'

He is a great newspaper boy. Every morning (if the weather is good), one of the boys will go out and grab my paper. My neighbors (looking at you A and J) are probably very disappointed though in not having to see me come out of the house half naked to get the paper.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Going back in time to rock the style

This past weekend was prom weekend. Let me explain - one of Brodi's author friends Emily always wanted to have an 80s prom, so for her birthday, she had one. We got to dress up (The D.I. has some rockin' stuff) and we danced the night away. Actually, not just dancing but some singing. I knocked out a beautiful rendition of 'Turn Around Bright Eyes' which led several people to openly cry in pleasure at my deep voice. Brodi and her friends busted out 'Boehemian Rhapsody' which was a treat for all of us. You can read more about it at her website: My one regret is that my white pants were not a bit tighter.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Pee Wee Herman just doing something inexplicable

This is completely random and totally worthless, but I saw this picture and it is just too awesome not to post. What is not to love about this pic? Pee Wee Herman styling in his awesome suit. Regis Philbin dressing just like him. Why do they have all that candy with them? Pee Wee Herman spilling all of those gumballs. There is no point to this post, except for the complete craziness and strangeness of this picture.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Mixing and Matching with cool cars

Brodi and I are always keeping our eyes out for an old classic Bronco or Blazer. As you can see by these pics, these are some great looking old cars. Brodi prefers the Bronco (on the left), I prefer the Blazers on the right.

With that said, can you imagine buying this thing? Don't get me wrong - Broncos are pretty cool. Old mustangs are pretty cool. But combining them? Seriously? Can you imagine driving this thing around? Egads. How about driving that to pick up your inlaws? I have realized that when car people have too much time on their hands, they do some interesting and often terrible things with their cars. You can buy this car/truck on ebay if you want. Auction ends this weekend. Hurry!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A plunger - so many uses

I walked into our family room the other day and found this sitting on the floor. A plunger. Yes, our 4-year old decided that the plunger would be a fun toy to walk around with and play. I think we may need to buy him some new toys.

Friday, October 8, 2010

I want my garage orange, brown and red!

Our garage door broke...and to make a long story short, it looks like we are going to get the springs fixed on it and paint our wood garage door so that it looks better than the beat up one we have right now. The question is - what color should we paint it? Click on the pic to see the garage door images better...but how cool would be to use some of these styles? How could you not love the audaciousness of the '50s?

Monday, October 4, 2010

Professional oww-ies and Becks scores a goal!

My boys are halfway thru soccer season. Carter's team has outscored its opponents 19-6 so far this year. I would like to say that it is my terrific coaching, but that would be a lie. I just have good players.

I don't think Beck's team has lost this season because they have a couple of ringers on his team. And superstar Becks did score his first goal of the year. It was actually a nice real goal (He is the one with the ball on the pic on the right) where he dribbled the ball, set up and kicked the goal. He celebrated by falling to the ground and rolling around for about 20 minutes after giving all of his fans on the sidelines High-Fives!. This is his individual picture (on the left) where he didn't want to hold the ball with his hands because using your hands in soccer is illegal.

Carlos Boozer was a former Jazz player. He just left the Jazz this off season to play for the Chicago Bulls. Many Jazz fans were happy to see him go because he always found a way to get injured and get to sit out 20-40 games a year. Well, he injured himself on a no practice day this weekend. He broke his finger. How did he do it. He explained that somebody rang the doorbell and he was going to the door and he tripped over his bag, fell down and broke his finger. SERIOUSLY? So, a professionally athlete who is flexible and agile somehow trips over a bag and breaks his finger?

Now take me, I am no longer truly athletic nor agile nor flexible and I trip over things in my house all the time and I have never even bruised myself and Boozer breaks a finger? Egads. Now people can understand why I am awfully pleased to no longer have him on the Jazz team.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Brodi is a star

Though most of you know, my wife Brodi is a writer. Well, she is now an author. Her agent Michael Bourret just sold her book to Harper Collins (Balzer & Bray imprint). You can read about it by clicking here

Her book was sent out to several publishers and an offer on it was almost immediate (within 2 days). We are excited. If you are not following Brodi or reading Brodi's blog, you need to visit it right now and you need to make it part of your weekly reading:

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Nothing important, just some rambling

A few thoughts about the past couple of days:

We ate my mom's house this Sunday for dinner. We had some fruit...and some frakkin' amazing grapes. As you can see by the picture, the normal red grape is on the right, my thumb is on the left and the mutant HUGE green grape is in the middle. I felt like I had to cut that thing with a knife into tiny bits so that I could stuff it into my mouth.

I am no engineer. That is pretty clear. But I walked under a freeway bridge the other day and they had some wood support beams under the bridge. Call me crazy, but is that wood doing much with 5,000 pound cars driving over it all day long?

I picked up some bbq chicken from the supermarket the other day. The label makes me laugh and reminds me that the people selling the deli food are not Market-ers. The name of this delicious dish? Boneless BBQ Chunks. Chunks? Yeah, I still ate it, but they gotta change that name.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Karl - A real American Hero!

I used to collect comics. Yes, I know that I was a complete nerd (and still am, I know). I have way too many X-Men, X-Force, Spawn, Batman, Justice League, etc. comics to even count. They are carefully stored away in plastic and boxes in our storage room. Well I decided to take a look at them and see if Carter wanted to read some of the nicer ones.

I came across this comic book, a Karl Malone comic book. I bought it 15 years ago because I thought it was hillarious. And it still is. For those that don't know, Karl Malone was a Power Forward for the Utah Jazz for a long, long time. He also was a superhero. I started reading this comic last night and Karl Malone, for some reason, is up at the North Pole. He saves a man that fell through the ice (YAY!), but ended up going down into the water after saving the guy (a guy watched it and said 'there he goes, he is gone forever), but NO! He is found a few years later and revived and given equipment to make him an elite mailman/fighter. He ends up saving bald eagles and fighting crime. Yeah, it is as bad as it sounds. Too bad because he would have been a great hero fighting along side Superman, Batman and WonderWoman.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Family day at the Beach

My brother and his family were in town a few weeks ago, so my sister and brother in law brought up their boat to Jordanelle for a day of water skiing. Problem was, it was really windy which made water skiing not too enjoyable.

That was fine for the kids though as they got to spend the day tubing and playing along the beach. Carter was in his element...playing with all of his cousins and getting dragged behind the boat for what seemed like hours. He wanted the boat to go faster and he kept trying to get the tube outside of the wake.

He did get some air on one move...bouncing out of his seat, but he came right back down to it amid howls of laughter from his cousins. Carter is convinced we need to buy a boat.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Shaking your booty, the right way

For those wondering how a guy like me could have caught such an amazing girl in Brodi...well, let me just say, it was my dance moves. A new study reports that killer dance moves like this draw women to you. I think it is fair to say my moves were too much for her and she had to date and marry me. What moves drive the women crazy...? Check out the video below for those moves (many of which I will bust out on the dance floor at any given well as the terrific running man dance move):

What moves will drive the ladies away and these are moves that I would never ever even think of doing, here you go:

I wonder how much money was put into that research study.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Sleeping with the fishes, in an undead way

Off the coast of India, in the Maldives, is a nice little resort that offers something different. And, I have yet to decide if this is really romantic or really creepy. On your honeymoon, you can sleep with the fishes...and not have to die to do it. It is a glass underwater bedroom.

Expectedly, it aint cheap. To use the resort villa lodging above water, it will run you around $1,500 a night...I am assuming that this underwater room will be more than that and they are not disclosing prices. But you get to have fish watching you all night and that is priceless, isn't it?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

With water, it will grow and grow

I walked by these two homes which were next to each other. They both decided on some interesting landscaping ideas. The one on the left is for a tree. Don't get me wrong, I love the idea of getting a tree to grow, but this tree is literally 3 inches tall and they have decided to mark off the tree's territory. I can't wait to see this tree reach 6 feet tall in 25 years. The one on the right is my favorite - they have planted flowers around this tree...wait, thats not a tree. It is a pipe sticking out of the lawn. Yet, they are treating it as a tree. I will be curious if this pipe ends up growing and if it blooms in the spring.

Monday, August 30, 2010

A day with the Utes

This past weekend was the Ute fan fest. Every year in late August, the University of Utah has a big fan gala. It is held at Rice Eccles Stadium and this year had to be the biggest turnout as it was crowded right from the start.

Carter and Becks love it because they get to walk on the football field, meet some of the players, play in a bounce zone on the field. It was pretty cool too as we saw Coach Jim Boylen (Ute basketball coach) and he saw my boys and he introduced himself to them. I asked if I could take a picture and he bellowed out: "Of course, lets do it!" He then got down to their level for me to take a picture.

We also met some of the hoops players, tennis players and others as well. The boys also got a chance to run out on the field and chase each other and play around. Football season starts this week, Basketball season starts at the end of October and Tennis season starts in January for the Utes. Go Utes!