Monday, December 31, 2007

My First Near Death Experience

Or "NDE" if you will. You know, I've heard about people having these. I've read a bunch of stories where people die (momentarily) and proceed to a light. Then they see someone and they get the chance to choose whether they go back into their body or stay with the light. They usually choose to come back to earth (or we wouldn't even know about their story) and then we read the story.

Mine wasn't anything like that. So either those people were lying, or I didn't really have the famed NDE that I thought I had. You decide. Here is how it went down:

Step One: Janese and I decided to buy a new fan/light for our front room. This is due to the fact that our light had been hit with basketballs too many times and only worked part of the time, and because I think our light was hideous. Here is the light (on the ground after being "fired"):



Step Two: We bought a new light at Lowes. I thought, Oh, I can hang this thing in an hour. I always start projects with this thought.

Now for a little "aside".

I don't really know anything about construction or wires or hammers. I mean, I can fix a few little things. The light in our bathroom was re-wired by me. I built our shed (please wind, don't blow). But I'm not really the kind of guy who should decide to take on a project by himself unless someone else has promised to come and check on me to make sure I haven't "expired" during the project (especially if there are wires, electricity, nails, or fire involved)...

Step Three: Janese and the children left for two hours and Maddie went down for a nap. So, I'm alone with my precious tools and a box holding a new light.

Step Four: I opened the box. Why wasn't this thing pre-assembled? I thought it would be a light/lamp sitting in some of those foam peanuts. It was just a bunch of wood blades, screws, nuts, motors, and other stuff. I immediately began to realize I was in over my head.



Step Five: I ripped the old lamp down. Harder than it sounds. I spend quite a bit of time trying to figure out which screws to mess with and which to leave intact. I finally decide just to start at the ceiling and work down. The old fans hangs for 20 minutes by the wiring. Probably not safe, but I couldn't come up with a better solution. It was pretty heavy. So it hangs there, partially supported by the top of the ladder while I search for the instructions. Sweating...

Step Six: I read the directions. I usually don't. I look at something and think, Hey, I know how this is supposed to go
and then I just start hammering things together in a way that seems right. Janese doesn't like that. She likes to read the directions. Like if we get a new board game, Janese starts reading the instructions while I just start setting up the game pieces in a way that seems logical. Janese then finishes reading the instructions. Then we re-set up the game in the correct fashion. (and then Janese looks for a way to cheat) (Don't tell her I know this)

The instructions were pretty involved. Lots of steps and diagrams. But the part that got my attention was this line:

Failure to [insert whatever step they're covering at the moment] may result in serious injury or death.


Death? This is a ceiling fan, not a weapons-grade container of enriched uranium. Why would I experience death from hanging a fan?

Step Seven: I put everything together, step by step in order, all by myself.

It took about two hours. The instructions said it would take 90 minutes so I must have taken an extra 30 minutes to contemplate my own "death and/or serious injury".

Step Eight: I turn the power in our front room back on and pull the switches for the lights and the fan. I did feel a little nervous flipping the breaker back on. I took a few seconds to determie how long it would take me to run upstairs, grab Maddie from her crib, and rush out of our burning home. I also tried to recall, from Scouts, how to put out an electrical fire (I can't remember...baking soda? fire extinguisher? stop, drop, and roll?)


So, according to the instructions, I had a near death experience. It wasn't as bad or life-changing as I thought it would be. Other people have new courage for life's problems or a new outlook or they forgive everyone who has ever offended them. I didn't have any of that stuff. I watched TV for a little while until Janese came home. She kissed me.

Also, I have an increased respect for the famous Trisha and her dishwasher...

Lastly, I will report on whether my children's Christmas wishes were dashed or not later...

Saturday, December 22, 2007

And I thought a Penguin would be tough...


I guess, technically, I could have gone to the Sacramento Zoo and found the "penguin house". We went there this summer and watched the penguins behind the glass. I know glass breaks, and I know I can break it. So, fulfilling Ashley's Christmas dreams was a possibility. A remote one, but a possibility nonetheless.

Now we have Parker. Apparently his school class all wrote letters to Santa and the newspaper got ahold of the letter. They were published this week. I just read Parker's letter, via the newspaper. Here it is, in its entirety:

Dear Santa,

Haw do yure randre fli I want to noe.
And thank you for the presents last yare.
Ples give me a elf.

Parker M.


At least penguins are real. I mean, Santa could scrounge one up from somewhere; a zoo, one of the poles, some eccentric person's basement tank. But where are you getting an elf? They're busy, small, they can disappear, they have those curly-tipped boots and pointed hats. No one is bringing one of those little fellers into this house.

I can just see Ashley and Parker, surrounded by dolls and toy trains and other wonderful toys, huddled in the corner, weeping, and mumbling something about their shattered Christmas wishes...

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Unrealistic Expectations...


Try to imagine the pressure felt when I came home from work today, dropped my keys on the counter in the kitchen, and found this Christmas letter to Santa from Ashley sitting next to Janese's planner (this is the entire letter, word for word, and I think she means it):

Dear Santa,
I want a penguin.
From: ASHLEY


We couldn't even take care of a dog. I'm not convinced I know exactly what Santa is bringing her this year, but at this point, Christmas is looking to be quite the let-down for at least one very good little girl...

Sunday, December 9, 2007

My Only Movie Review (a.k.a. "Eight Thumbs Down")

It's a Festivus Miracle!

I found a movie that is worse than Rocky 6. I know...Unbelievable (especially if you've seen Rocky 6). It was the ABC Family Movie of the whatever. Title? "Holiday in Handcuffs"

I can't tell you how horrible this movie was. Just keep in mind that it was worse the the last Rocky movie. And trust me, than means it was pretty bad.

I suggest that if you see this movie being rebroadcast in any form during the holidays that you poke your finger into your eye and touch your brain. Anything to avoid seeing this one...

Enjoy December...

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Some Singing and an Update

What started as a place to post pictures became a place to update about our family and then became a place for me to type whatever I want. So, I'm going back one step, to family updating. (Even though I kinda want to talk about some 80's music that I actually did like)

We'll start with a little moment from Maddie. Lately, she has not really enjoyed going to bed like she used to. It used to be so easy. Grab a blanket, read a book, sing together, pray, plop her into her crib, and skip out in a carefree way because Maddie was going to go right to sleep.

Now, when we say, "Time for night-night honey" she immediately begins chanting, in a panic, "No bed, no bed, NO bed, NO BED, NO BED! No BED!". Even though i think it is kind of cute, Janese and I both miss the easy-to-bed routine we used to have.

The good news is that Maddie still really likes to sing before she goes to sleep:
video

Landon and I went to the Peter Breinholt Christmas concert last night. Incredible as always.


Landon and Parker both brought home their report cards this week. All E's...E's are A's for those of you who are old. :)

Ashley had a great week in school with Miss Jami. We forgot to post a picture from Ashley's Thanksgiving Dinner at school with mom.


Janese and I just kinda stood around and watched and tried not to get in the way. Janese, of course, was busy all week helping everyone do everything. She even managed to take a second and read the chapter of Edward and Bella's story from Edward's perspective. (Spoiler: THESE PEOPLE ARE CHARACTERS IN A FICTION BOOK. THEY ARE NOT REAL. I REPEAT, THEY ARE NOT REAL.) Which, by the way, reminds me that I wanted to let everyone know that Stephanie Meyer is now selling bracelets...Bella's bracelet. I'm not putting a link to this site because I don't think anyone should buy one. Nothing against Steph, just, it is a stupid idea. They are $65. Give the money to charity. Please...

Oh, and Janese and I, thanks to some wonderful friends and neighbors, went to the Nutcracker. I think I liked it. The men should wear pants or sweats, though. Not nylons. Ever.

Janese: Tights, Brian, Tights! (I'm learning how to Blog! Yea!)

Monday, November 26, 2007

Cover your eyes!

Not because something you're about to see is inappropriate, but because it is, uh, well, unattractive. Now, I am purposely putting the picture far enough down this post that you won't see it until you are done reading about it. Yes, a little shock value is intended.

According to a story on CNN.com, government officials stopped a wedding convoy because the group looked "suspicious". Then they detained a few in the party. I'm putting the word "suspicious" in quotes because I'm not sure it is the correct word to use. But, I digress...

So they pull over the cars. Upon further inspection they discover that the groom and bride are both terrorist suspects. So they detained them. Probably a typical day in Baghdad, from what I read. It ended up being two men, not a bride and groom. They were "in disguise". Again, I'm sure this happens weekly in the Middle East.

One reason they were pulled over is because one car in the convoy wouldn't heed an official's warning to stop. Also, there were all men and just one woman (the bride) in the group and I guess that would seem suspicious. The other reason is because the groom wouldn't lift the veil of his wife-to-be. Let's take a second and explore that...

Hmm. Why wouldn't a groom want to lift the veil of his wife-to-be and show her off to other people? Is it a cultural thing? That is the question. Here is the answer:

Scroll down a bit.
































I (sarcastically) wonder why the groom wouldn't lift the veil. The government officials suspected there was a problem? Wow. This disguise hurts to look at. In fact, this is, by far, the worst disguise I have ever seen anyone, anywhere, try to use to get past a Middle-eastern checkpoint. Or any check point for that matter. On any planet where life could be supported by an atmosphere. This person should not only be detained, but forced to stare at a mirror until he breaks down and vomits up Taliban secrets. I'm not supportive of physical punishment in most cases, but this "groom" should be caned for allowing his little cronies to trick him into being the "groom" to such an unattractive bride. Maybe that is a practical joke in the Middle East. Like the other guys were in the other cars behind the bride and groom and they were snickering and pointing at the sucker sitting next to the bride. Boy, that backfired.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

I've Been Published!



Well, not really. But I did write my first "letter to the editor". Boy, I tell ya what, the thrill of flexing of my freedom of speech muscles was exhilarating. This is what America is all about. I feel like a cowboy of old, riding into a city and "correcting" the local, corrupt sheriff and then riding off into the sunset, guns smoldering, hat tipped down and to the side, spurs quietly jingling as they bouncing against my horse's flanks to the rhythm of his sure, steady and slow trot.



I just hope I spelled everything correctly. Eye wud knot whant 2 bee imbearest bye sum dum "spelling mistakes".

The original article about Gov. Romney suggesting that if he is elected he will hire a management consulting team to help restructure the government can be found here.

Here is my letter, just in case it does get published. Then we'll have proof that I was "Brian, UT":

Kinsley's "Bring in the Consultants!" fails on at least two points. After complaining that a management consulting team would not be a good idea to restructure our current government, Kinsley gives no, absolutely no, examples of where a management consulting firm has failed to restructure a "client" successfully. Secondly, Gov. Romney didn't say he was going to hire a consulting team to run the government. He was going to look at restructuring the government organization. We have ample examples, from this very magazine, of the need to have a government that is restructured, slimmed-down, simplified, and reorganized. No one, Gov. Romney included, is suggesting that the "cacophony of politics" is going to be replaced with a management consulting team. But, the dissonance we are all seeing in the current government organization is neither efficient or effective. It sounds like Kinsley's article could have used a proofreading and reorganizing by a McKinsey, Bain, Boston, or at least Jack Welch.


I don't think I really feel that strongly about the article. But I liked writing my letter. So, I'm going to do it more. Local newspaper, Time Inc., the NY Times, the Dictionary. Anything I don't totally agree with is going to hear from me. Now everyone will feel the wrath of my pen.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Senior Session...

To see Lisa's senior pictures sneak peek, go to the photography website...

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

100th Post!

That came fast.

Since I hadn't really thought much about the fact that our 100th post was coming up, I'm not really sure what to do.

I could list 100 things about us that people might not know (boring)

I could list 100 songs from the 80's that I hate (too easy)

I could list 100 things I love about Janese (too romantic)

I could list 100 things I want to do before I die (I can only think of 4)

I could list my 100 favorite birds (too exciting)

Hmm. Nothing is coming. I can't even make up a list of 6 things that have to do with anything. I keep seeing these "I've Been Tagged!!!" lists and I'm not very interested in writing about all of that stuff.

Let's just go with this. It isn't that great. I wouldn't even really want to read it if I wasn't me. I may not even read it even though I am me...


Here are just 10 things...

1. I have consumed at least one plate of nachos almost every week since about 6th grade. That all started at Jeff Boele's house and will end in an ER, I'm sure.

2. I was kicked off of The Alamo ("for life" they said...).

3. I sometimes watch movies on the iPod while I'm driving to work. No, I don't carpool. No, I'm not sitting in some form of public transportation. Yes, I know that if it isn't illegal it is still pretty unsafe. No, I'm probably not going to stop. No, you shouldn't do it, too.

4. I like watching Mystery Science Theater 3000 movies (refer to above info).

5. When people lose their tempers in public I kind of want to laugh out loud so they can hear. But I don't really like getting beat up.

6. I lost the spelling bee in 5th grade on the word "people". It was humiliating because I always thought I was pretty smart. The dang E-O combination threw me.

7. I was at a sleep-over with some kid in about 7th grade. At one point he pulled out two one-gallon jugs of water and started doing curls. He told me not to ever tell anyone because he was embarrassed. I never did. I'm not going to tell you his name (to keep my promise) but it does feel pretty good to unburden myself after all of these years. Here's a hint: His initials are D.H. and he has authored a number of books that sell on Amazon.com.

8. I think our family has held Family Home Evening over 400 times. I can't recall a Monday that we've missed. Last Monday, after the lesson, we played Mario Cart Double Dash for the activity. It doesn't really matter who won. What was interesting was that I've never seen anyone lose as bad as Janese.

9. I woke up in the middle of surgery on my finger (for the complete story, ask Darren). My eyes opened and I saw one of the surgeons' eyebrows raise quickly and then he said, "Uh-oh." I heard some beeping above my head from a machine. The beeping picked up a little. I fell back to sleep. I think I don't really ever want to hear a surgeon say "Uh-oh" when they are cutting my body.

10. I'm pretty sure most dogs feel like biting me. They must sense/smell fear. I can't remember not feeling that way. We even owned a dog named Bailey a few years ago. Everyday when I went out back to train her I would picture what would happened if I turned my back while she was fetching the ball. I pictured her surprising me by wrapping her teeth around the soft fleshy part of the back of my neck in a death grip. I've never actually been mauled or anything, but I'm sure I inherited this fear from my dad. When I was little and we were in Utah for vacation, dad was chased home by a ferocious canine while jogging when we visited Logan. We saw the dog a little later that day. It weighed about 7 pounds. I think the next time my dad went jogging he took a big, thick belt with him for defense. Just thinking about my dad jogging in broad daylight in Logan with a hefty leather belt and a watchful eye makes my laugh. I'm laughing right now. Oops, now I'm not. The dog next door is barking. I think it picked up my scent. Dang. I knew this would happen.

If you made it this far, leave a comment. C'mon, it's a celebration.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Sneak Peek of My "Little" Brother...

My baby brother David and his family came to town for a few hours this afternoon. Click here to see his family's photo shoot!

He is so tall I had a hard time cropping the pictures to keep everyone in the scene...

Monday, November 5, 2007

A long line of Thespians....

Yes, our sons come from a long line of thespians. Well, actually, I was Hanzel in "Hanzel and Gretyl" in second grade. Mary Ann Clark was Gretyl. My only line was to stand there. And that isn't really, technically, a "line". Janese says she was in a play or two in grade school but can't remember what they were. Still counts. So, when Landon and Parker cheerfully volunteered to be in our ward's version of "Annie" Janese and I felt a deep sense of satisfaction.

That's one version of the story.

Actually, Janese signed the boys up without their permission. I was scared to death playing Hanzel and was never in a production again. Janese still can't recall the play she was in.

But we did feel satisfied watching them in the play. They did great. The entire cast did. They memorized their lines and songs and our boys really did have a great time doing it.

Here's the proof:

The boys getting into character (they are orphans in the play....neither one liked wearing make-up):


The boys doing "relaxation exercises"...it is an actor thing (I think):


The entire cast in all their glory:


I forgot to add this: I was a juggling lion in a class circus once. I juggled two bean-bags if I remember correctly.

And that was in front of thousands of cheering, screaming fans...

Sunday, November 4, 2007

What time is it?

I set my clock "back" last night. I set my alarm at the "normal" time, which is technically an hour after I normally set it. I woke to my alarm, figured I was awake an hour earlier than normal and went back to sleep. I was now an hour early. Or late. I don't know. So I woke up 15 minutes before I needed to be a bishopric meeting. Or maybe I was 45 minutes late. Or early. I still can't tell. Everyone was already at the meeting that I was to conduct, so I must have been late. Or they had forgot to change their clocks.

I seemed to have an extra hour in between interviews and church. Daylight Saving explained it. I think.

I got home from church a little early. Maddie went down for her nap an hour late. I don't know how to explain that since I think we've set our clocks back an hour. But we forgot to set the clocks in the front of the house back, so we were an hour later for everything. But not really because we had been living according to the bedroom clock. Which I had ignored for an hour.

Janese keeps claiming that we need to get the kids in bed an hour early because of the time change, but that would be the normal time, a week ago.

So, I don't know what time it is right now. I don't know when the kids are supposed to go to bed. And if I call my parents (in CA) or brother (in TX) to ask, I'm an hour off one direction or the other anyhow.

On another note, my free iPod nano arrived. Pretty sweet. Thanks, KeyBank. In the interest of full-disclosure, yes, I opened the account just for the nano. I'm closing it this week.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

New Senior Session

Check out the "sneak peak" of M*...click here.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Halloween 2007

The children have been dressing up for Halloween since March. Their efforts finally paid off. They scored so much candy that I felt absolutely no guilt when I took some. Well...I might have taken more than some. I'm not even sure they noticed.

But, after about an hour, I noticed. I noticed it mostly right around the intestinal area....

Happy Halloween!


Sunday, October 28, 2007

Daughter Photo Shoot

We did a quick little girl's photo shoot...click here to see the rest of them...

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Vampire books...

Let's get one things straight: I DID NOT read the book(s). I had two sister-in-laws talk to me about the Twilght series books. In fact, one SIL didn't want to tell me about the books because she thought I wouldn't let Janese read them (like I can tell her what to do).

I was razzing some girls in my seminary class because they were all so in love with Edward. They finally told me that I couldn't make fun of a book I had not read. Isn't that what the cover is for? To give me a reason to judge a book without having to read it? So, in the spirit of wanting the make fun of the book, I decided to read it. I know....stupid choice. But I did.

I got through the first 200 pages an gave it back to Janese.

I'll tell you what...if I was in 10th grade, and I was a girl, I'm sure I'd love it. But I'm not, and I don't. At all. I got to some part where Edward was stroking Bella's chin or something like that and the thought exploded into my mind like a ray of early morning sunlight, I could not care less about a character. I recently finished Kiterunner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, so this book paled, horribly, recklessly even, in comparison when it came to getting me to care about the characters (or the plot, or author, or page numbers, or jacket cover, or ISBN number, for that matter). In fact, I read an advertisment for binkies in Parenting magazine yesterday and I cared more about the characters there than in the Twilight book.

With that said, I just took a questionairre to see which Twilight character I am most like. Turns out, using this highly scientific experiement, I am most like:



You're Carlisle Cullen - You are very intelligent and have high moral standards. You truly care about people and helping them. Your knack for solving problems and pleasing two warring sides makes you unique and a desirable friend to have, even if sometimes you have to tell people what they might not like hearing.


Whoever this guy is, he most be pretty special...

Go ahead ladies, take the quiz here. It is free, and really quite scientific and important to take. But remember, THIS BOOK IS FICTION. You can't marry Edward. He isn't real.

Sorry for the spoiler. :)

Now, for the record, Janese took the quiz. She is most like:

Friday, October 26, 2007

Podcasts

I have been listening to podcasts for quite awhile now. Recently I asked my students how many of them listened to any podcasts on a regular basis and was suprised to hear that very few of them even knew what a podcast was. There were a few little misconceptions concerning podcasts that we cleared up and a couple students now listen to podcasts on a somewhat-regular basis.

I love podcasts. I get to listen to the information I want, when I want, and skip anything I don't want. I can search for regularly updated material on subjects that matter to me (or just plain entertain me). I even have my own podcast (well, had my own podcast...it hasn't been updated since episode 9).

{Plug: my podcast is called "The Family History Minute" and was a top-ten listened to podcast on the educational podcasts in iTunes...you can find it by going to www.familyhistoryminute.com or by going into iTunes, going to the iTunes Music Store, and searching for "Brian Mickelson, or "Family History Minute". I am currently deciding if it is worth the time to re-record/edit the thing and add two more episodes...we'll see. If you listen to it, send some feedback or episode ideas...I could use all the help I can get. I have received emails from people from all over the earth concerning the show. The feedback has been wonderful and I've enjoyoed conversing with people from wherever...}




Anyhow (now that that is over) here are the basics:
1. You don't need an iPod. Or even any type of mp3 player. Those only help if you want to listen to podcast when you are out and about.
2. You find a podcast you like and "subscribe" to it. Then, whenever they post a new "episode" it automatically downloads to your computer. Most people use iTunes to subscribe to podcasts, but there are other options.
3. Most podcasts update regularly and are well done. In iTunes, people vote on podcasts and give reviews and that helps you know what will be lame and what will be great to listen to.
4. Most media organizations have podcasts that are well done. CNN, NPR, etc....
5. iTunes keeps a list of the top-listened-to podcasts. Careful...they are not all "clean" all of the time. If there is explicit information in a podcast, they mark it that way. That helps.
6. All podcasts are free. Ya, I know...free. Sweet.

Here are the podcasts I am currently listening to:
1. This American Life: Weekly podcast lasting about an hour. Usually cut into a few segments all focusing on one theme. This has been a top listened to podcast for quite awhile now. Very well done.
2. RadioLab: In my opinion, this is the best-produced podcast on the planet. VERY well done.
3. CarTalk: Don't be fooled. I don't know a thing about cars. I probably never will. I don't listen to CarTalk because of the cars. I listen to it because these are two of the funniest guys I've eve heard. I love this podcast (which is actually a weekly radio show from NPR) and listen to it every week. Tom and Ray...these two guys from Boston...you have to hear them...
4. Grammar Girl -- Guide to Better Writing: I don't know why I like this one. Maybe because it is short and makes me smarter. Or seem smarter. Well, it is short and well done anyhow.
5. Family History Minute: I don't really listen to my own. C'mon. I hear myself everyday. But, people like it (not everyone...).

I have listened, in the past, to a bunch of other podcasts and I periodically go back to them a listen to recent episodes. I enjoy the PopSci Podcast, most stuff from NPR, some of CNN's stuff, and then a few random podcasts on subjects like photography, photo editing, genealogy, news, and whatever else I think of.

I'd be interested in hearing about what you're listening to. Let me know.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Daughters...

This is what photography should be. Now, I realize that I have moved the photography portion of this blog to the photography blog...I know. But, I'm posting these pictures here, not there. Why? Because I want to.

There was good light in the bedroom. I grabbed the camera, the daughters, and took about two minutes to shoot pictures. No direction. No "smile!" Just hitting the button. Now, after about ten minutes of editing, I'm posting...

I'm putting these here because this was more about life in our home than photography. Plus, these are my daughters and I can do whatever I want...









Monday, October 22, 2007

I'm glad I live where I live...

Because I would never, ever, want to live in Philadelphia. At least not after reading this report. And I quote:

"PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) - Philadelphia is home to the least attractive people in the United States, a survey of visitors and residents showed on Friday.

"The city of more than 1.5 million people was also found to be among the least stylish, least active, least friendly and least worldly, according to the "America's Favorite Cities" survey by Travel & Leisure magazine and CNN Headline News."


Now, it isn't that I'm helping out Northern Utah by living here (I may be pulling our averages down), but I don't want to be living in the ugliest city in the US either. The article goes on the mention other "ugly" cities in the US.

Why did they report on this poll? Wouldn't having the 76'ers and the Eagles in your town make you feel bad enough?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

When Janese gets an idea...

...she really gets to work on it. I'm not sure if we were finishing a project from some time ago, or if this was a new project that we just started. All I know is that we spent the majority of Saturday painting. And painting. And painting. And, Janese did most of it. But, for proof that the rest of us jumped in a "helped"...I took a few pictures.



Sweet Bubble Day...

Here are a few more pics from the day of bubbles...



Thursday, October 18, 2007

Decision made...most likely...

Drum-roll please...

The decision is...iPhone.



Here are the reasons:
1. They are cool.
2. I like them.
3. The Blackberry data plan through Verizon is lame.
4. The iPhone will have my "The Office" episodes on it.
5. The iPhone will have a few of my MST3K shows on it.
6. The Blackberry is the size of a cheeseburger in your pocket (thanks Harmony!)
7. The iPhone is sweet.
8. Steve Jobs has one (or two).
9. Bill Gates doesn't (well, he probably does...).
10. Uh...the iPhone will have Suduko on it?

So, there you have it. A bunch of people have given my advice...so, thanks. And the iPhone it is...

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Keeping the Sabbath Day holy...I think.




The weather is great right now. There is rain in the forecast. We've been in the church building for three hours (eight hours if you are me, and today wasn't nearly as busy as usual). And, most of us have been kind of sick over the past two weeks. So we, as a family, played "bubbles" outside after we took a walk, bombed each other with crabapples, and threw water on the neighbor girls. I caught a few great pictures. I would have a few more of the other children but they were too involved trying to use light-sabers to cut the bubbles asunder...

Saturday, October 13, 2007

What an angel...

The special (and kind of sad) circumstances under which this sweet little thing had her pictures taken make this particular picture one of my all time favorites. What an honor it was to be the photographer! To see more of this special family, click here...

Make sure you click right on this picture to get a larger, more detailed view.

Friday, October 12, 2007

A little TECH help please...

Here is my problem, desribed completely and perfectly in one, well-crafted sentence:

I am sick of using a stylus.

There. I said it. Not only am I sick of using a stylus (and won't, ever again) but I lost mine. So, when I am sitting in a meeting trying to input some notes into my little Palm device, I use a pen cap. Lame, I know.

So...I have a decision to make. Rather than simply go buy something that looks cool (which is what I usually do) I am trying to make this complicated by weighing all of the options.

PROBLEM: I need a PDA, cell-phone, MP3 player, paired down to one or two items (I'm not carrying three devices).

POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS: First off, here is what I'm NOT doing. I'm not getting a Palm-anything. Not the Treo. No Palm stuff. Don't ask me why. We'll get into this big debate about it and everything all boils down to me listing a bunch of reasons why Microsoft is making it easier for the aliens to take over our planet. I realize that Palm isn't owned by Bill Gates, but there are a bunch of connections...

Here are the most likely options:


ONE: I'll but an iPhone. I'd have to switch to ATT. But iPhones are cool. They don't have a to-do list that syncs with iCal (for some reason) and that is a problem. I could maybe use Google Calendar (which would be nice...no syncing at all). iPhones are expensive, they have a pretty small harddrive, but they are pretty cool, too. I like them.



TWO: Blackberry Curve or the Blackberry 8800 phone. I don't really need to have email capabilities from the PDA like BB's are famous for, but it would be nice I guess. Their data plans aren't cheap (the iPhone's is only $20/mo). I like both Blackberries quite a bit (but now I'm tired of typing...)

So, here is what I'm asking for. Will you ask all of the people you know who have either/any of these devices and get opinions and then post those thoughts? And quickly?