11/26/08

Croutons

I view common, hard-as-stone croutons as an annoyance in my salad.

I don't want anything in my salad that shatters when poked with a fork.

Homemade croutons...now that is an entirely different story.

11/20/08

Twilight Premiere



About 3 weeks ago, I got a fairly standard piece of regular old fashion snail mail. When I opened it I quickly saw that it contained two tickets to an event -- and I instantly assumed that it was one of those lame Donald Trump real estate seminar invitations where they tell you the tickets are worth $150 a piece but really they just try to sell you crap when you go. I almost chucked the whole thing in the trash.

Luckily, I took a closer look.

To my surprise it contained two numbered tickets with Becky and my name on the back for the Arizona premiere of Twilight. We were told to keep the event confidential until after it had occurred...and that formal attire was recommended.

So, tonight Becky and I got all gussied up and went out for a delightful evening (see Becky's review here). We ran into a bunch of our old Glendale friends from back in the day when Stephenie and Poncho were both our friends and neighbors (same Ward. I served in the YM with Poncho).

It was really fun to see a couple hundred people in the theater all decked out in their finery. They even had a red carpet leading into the theater. At the door they gave us a bunch of gift cards to redeem at the concession stand (p.s., I learned that it is pretty easy to blow $30 bucks at a concession stand). Once inside, Stephanie was there to greet everyone and take pictures. She immediately ran up and gave Becky a really big hug as soon as she saw her.

As far as I know we were among the earliest audiences in the world to see this show (the Hollywood premiere and press screening, before us). It was only Pancho's second time, after the Hollywood premiere. It was their son Gabe's first time.

My review: I can't possible review this film objectively. I suppose my super abbreviated review is that it was better than I expected it would be AND that it was more faithful to the book than I thought it would be. But this is where it is hard to be objective: because it was pretty faithful to the book, I know that I was mentally filling in any blanks that the film mayhave left out. For example, when the waitress is serving Bella and Edward in the restaurant, I'm mentally filling in the dialogue that is going on in her head that Edward is hearing...but the film never shows this or tell us that it is happening. I just know it from the book.

So, if you liked the book, I think you will like the film. If you haven't read the book, I don't know how you will like it...that is the part I can't be objective about. I can't un-know what I know about the story.

We talked to Stephenie and Poncho after the showing, congratulated them and thanked them again for the invite. I also told Stephenie that whatever hand she had in the soundtrack, that I liked it a lot.

Look for Stephenie's brief cameo in one of the diner scenes. She's sitting a her laptop writing and orders a veggie burger. Our audience got a big kick out of that scene.

All in all, a very fun evening.

To any of our other current of future famous friends...please invite us to your premieres as well!


P.S. Last week I think we broke some kind of Stephenie Meyer reading record in my household. I was reading "The Host", Becky was reading "Breaking Dawn", Madison re-read "Twilight" and then read "Midnight Sun", and Savanna re-read "New Moon" and "Eclipse" and "Midnight Sun". Crazy!

11/19/08

Pharaoh's Dream

SEVEN years ago (soon after the 9-11 attacks, and the same day that the U.S. started the war in Afghanistan) President Hinckley gave a talk entitled, The Times in Which We Live in which he referenced Pharaoh’s Dream. You remember, Donny Osmond sang about itthe one that talks about SEVEN years of plenty followed by SEVEN years of famine.

I noticed that Elder Packer also referenced Pharaohs Dream in the Arizona state-wide stake conferences a couple of weeks ago.

Scary.

11/18/08

The Mormon Work Ethic...UT...AZ is too hot...can't move

Read it.

Maybe I need to move. It is too hot here. Broke the freakin hottest ever record yesterday and today!

Of course, that would require me to sell my house in the worst sellers market…ever.

11/15/08

Stupid packaging...


Although I'm glad to have found candelabra style CFL bulbs at Costco, the half-empty "Earth Friendly" box is ridiculous.

11/13/08

11/10/08

Truth

“All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree...”

Albert Einstein


“All truth can be circumscribed into one great whole”

Joseph Smith

11/8/08

Thou craven milk-livered foot-licker!

Next time you’re feeling mad at someone, but can’t think of anything sufficiently bad to call them, turn to the Shakespearean Insult Generator for help.

11/7/08

...attained to the Age of thirty-five Years

Article II of the U.S. Constitution states:

      No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

So, I guess that means the balls in my court now.

Credit goes to Emily for reminding me of this forgotten bit of civicsif only I had remembered earlier! Perhaps I could have been the one announcing who my new White House chief of staff would be this week!

11/6/08

Buy Low. Sell High.

I was feeling pretty smug on Tuesday, since I had thrown a fairly substantial pile of coinage into the market on Monday.

Wednesday and Thursday haven’t been as much fun.

My last foray into non-401k investing – March 2000, 100% internet stocks – was a complete disaster (the portfolio lost over 90% of its value). So, if I offer you any investing advice, like this, you can simply respond, “Thanks, but no thanks”.

11/3/08

2008 Election



It was a very tough decision this year. Becky and I spent about 3 hours filling out our ballots.

I want you all to know that I made the right decision.
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Desert Grande Duathlon / Triathlon




















As you can see, I have a lot of electronics on me when I run: a heart rate monitor on my left wrist & chest, stop watch on my right wrist, Body Bugg on my left arm, trusty pedometer on my waist, iPod on my waist (yes, I listen to podcasts rather than music while I run/race). I wish I had a pacing GPS watch!

One year ago, this same race marked my return to the sport. I improved my prior time by 18 minutes...but, truth be told, that has more to do with the fact that last year I took a wrong turn on the bike and rode 50% further than planned.

I have only done a few races in the past year (Desert Grande twice, Mesa Turkey Trot 10k, & Payson Sprint Triathlon), but this is the first one where I haven't felt like I was going to die before I made it to the finish line. The 2008 Turkey Trot is in a few weeks and then Ragnar in February.

I just wish I could go faster...


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Sophie turns 2


We moved into our house on Halloween day 2004. Two years later, on the same day, Sophie joined us.

I love this little girl.
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Mindy Gledhill Concert


Lil' sis Ashley joined us for the concert.

Mindy did a fantastic job! If you aren't familiar with her music, check it out. Feather in the Wind is a great song. Becky and I had the pleasure of hosting Mindy and her husband Ryan while they were in town. Great people. We had a really good time getting to know them better.

Claire & Jane were the highlight.
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Fear this


Yes, that is my one year old daughter petting a live, uncaged, unleashed alligator*.

And that is Jacob petting an 18 foot long python. The owner said they're deadly to humans at 9 feet and beyond. This thing was ridiculously large!


* Amazing that an otherwise deadly animal can be rendered harmless with $0.25 worth of black electrical tape.

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11 years old


4 lbs 11 onces at birth. 11 fun-filled years later...
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It's a busy street


Thank you Mindy & Ryan! We love the sign.
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Caught in the act...



Sophie...breakfast...caught red handed
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