Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thanksgiving and James Bond

One of my favorite holidays has come again and I am enjoying it. I really like the 4 day weekend, along with lots of turkey to eat. We were with my family on Thanksgiving day and with Jen's family on the Saturday after. Both days were enjoyable with turkey and games shared at both. Our kids are now at an age where they do not need constant supervision and so we let them play and were able to enjoy ourselves with our family members.

On Friday went to see the new James Bond movie with my family. I was looking forward to it as I thought Casino Royal was a very good movie and wanted to see how it continued. But I was kind of disappointed. The movie was not bad, just not as good as Casino. We had to sit in the second row of the theater and so had difficulty in watching the full screen of action. The action was like the action in the Transformer movie. Difficult to see with the shaky camera and constant cuts between scenes. I don't like those kinds of movies. I was also disappointed with the ending as it did not seem to conclude the whole quantum plot point. This unknown organization was a large plot point, but they seemed to forget about it by the end of the movie. I know that they will most likely continue that plot point in future movies, but they should not ignore it either.

If you are a James Bond fan I certainly recommend seeing the movie, but it may be worth waiting until DVD.

Tomorrow concludes our relaxing holiday weekend. We put up Christmas decorations and now look forward to the Christmas festivities.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Wild and wacky weekend

This was one of those weekends where it would be easier to tell you what did not happen, rather than what did. All week we were boxing up our home to move it on Saturday. But on Friday we were able to take some time out for ourselves. Jen & I dropped the kids off at my parents and then were treated to the new "Twilight" movie by my financial planner. It was nice to put the move out of our minds and just enjoy an evening together. The movie was entertaining and as someone who has not read the books, I would recommend the movie to others. There was some fun action in the movie, along with the romance. My only complaint was that the final climatic scene was not long enough. But it was still fun.

Saturday we woke up and began loading up our pod and moving van. (Our Realtor had a moving van for his clients, for only $17 a day. Nice deal huh?) Because we had packed everything up before the move, we were able to load both the pod and van. Travel to our apartment and get everything unloaded within 3 1/2 hours. Having members of my ward and my very helpful family from both sides was the secret to our moving success. Plus one of my pet peeves is to go help someone move and show up with nothing boxed up and nothing ready. So we were determined that this would not happen with us. So we were all moved in by 12:30 and are enjoying the pleasures of living in a small apartment.

We were done with our move in time to enjoy a pleasant evening in front of Adam Meyer's big screen TV during the hours of 4-8pm. Thankfully the TV was on the station that showed the Utah game and Jen & I thoroughly enjoyed it. Adam was not as excited with the outcome as we were. But to see our Utes repeat as undefeated BCS busters was the best thing for our busy and stressful weekend. The high I was on after the game did not stop for hours. It will be nice to not have to sing the BYU fight song due to losing a bet I make with co-workers every year. It will be nice to hear them try to put their singing voices to good use. My advice to them concerning singing, "its a quest for perfection." :)

So that's the weekend. Looking forward to thanksgiving with the family and eventually moving into our permanent home.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Huray its boxing day

This week has been dominated by packing and loading tons of moving boxes. We've been going through everything we own to see which box it will go in and if it goes into storage or with us to our apartment. I'm sure everyone is amazed by how much stuff they accumulate during their lives and I have been realizing that lately. We have everything from unused flower seeds to letters from old boyfriends. (Well from Jen's old boyfriends, I don't have any old or even current boyfriends.) Its a good thing we are going to end up in a larger home, so that we can have room for our accumulated stuff we will be getting more of during our life.

We are getting closer to moving day and things are finally progressing well. We are getting many things boxed up. The people who are buying our home have started to install a fence today and did their final walk through. They look like a nice couple with a 4 month old baby. Tomorrow we will close on the selling of our house and then we will be renters once again. It will be strange to go back to living in a small apartment and we will be motivated to get back into a home as soon as we can. But we will be even more motivated to be completed with our move in time to enjoy the Utah BYU game this Saturday.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


So we learned that the home we are trying to buy could take up to 6 weeks and possibly more to purchase. We need to be out of our current home by Saturday and so need a place to live in the mean time. Thanks to Jen's sister letting us know about an apartment complex that allows 2 month leases. We have found a place to live. Ironically it is very close to our first apartment we had when we got married.

So this Saturday we will be moving out of our home and into a small 2 bedroom apartment. Many people have emailed or listed comments on our blogs that they would love to help. If you are still interested in helping, we will be moving this Saturday at 9am starting at our current home on Collins Camp Court. Let me know if you would like to come give us a hand and we will provide details.

Well, life is taking a strange turn but we are rolling with it. It will be a bummer to not be in our new home in time for Christmas. But once we are in our new home, it will all be worth it.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Never a dull moment in the world of home buying

This month has been anything but boring. We found a home that we liked and could live in for some time. It is much larger than our current house and has a finished yard. The basement is not finished but it could be fun to work on my own house, building it up and making it my own. So we put a bid on it, starting low so we could have room to negotiate. But the home is a short sell and so expected to wait a few days to hear from someone in a bank office to accept, reject or counter offer. Instead we heard very quickly from the seller's Realtor.

He reported that the bank was sick of the home and wanted it to go away. So they were ready and prepared to foreclose and send the home to auction, just to see it disappear. But with us showing up with an offer was a ray of hope for the people who owned the home, and hoped to avoid foreclosure, and for the realtor who wanted to sell the home and collect a commission. The Realtor called the bank and fought for a chance for our offer to be reviewed and accepted. The bank gave in and stated that if our offer could be raised to a specific amount and would be presented within a hour. They would accept it and allow the sale to go through. They would also allow the home to close within 3 weeks, a rare thing with short sells.
So we jumped at this chance, revised our offer within the hour and got it in on time. We have not heard back officially from the bank to confirm that the offer has been accepted, but are very optimistic that it will and that within 3 weeks, we shall be in our new home.

Very ironically we also heard from the owners of a home we bid on last week. They have a very nice home that we both liked and would have enjoyed very much. They were asking for 225000 for the home and just would not come down a single penny. So we could not reach an agreement and we had moved on and bid on the house across the street (as described above.) Suddenly they approached us again asking if we were still interested in the home. I should not feel competitive in this home buying process, but it did feel kind of good to tell these good people that we were thankful for their interest in our past offers. But we were in the process of pursing the home next to them and so could not pursue their home anymore. So because they were unwilling to negotiate, they missed their chance with a good and qualified buyer. I guess my imperfections are now clear for the world to see within this blog.

Despite all our efforts to find our new home, we are still without temporary housing. A apartment that our Realtor offered us may not be ready when we move this next Saturday. But we will finalize that on Monday (Hopefully) If not, we could always live in a tent in the park.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Still homeless

So last week we dedicated all our efforts to finding a new home. We found a wonderful home that we both loved and stretched our budget to the max and offered all we have for the new home. After a very nervous and long Sunday, we finally heard back that they did not want to accept anything less than their asking price. This remained out of our financial reach and so we are back to house hunting.

I was completely baffled that someone would put their house on today's market and expect to get their full asking price. The home is a very good home and someone may in fact give them the price they are asking. But they should expect people to want to negotiate a price of a home and so they should have priced their home higher that what they wanted so they could meet at that price. But just because that is the way I sold my home does not mean that other need to do that too.

So we need to find temporary housing extremely quickly. So far, all my efforts to rent a home for the remainder of the year has been fruitless. But we are not discouraged and will find something before the end of this week.

When we finally end up in our new home, I will never move again. Or at least not for 15-20 years.

Friday, November 7, 2008

I've always wanted to rush the field

My Realtor gave me front row tickets to the Utah TCU game last night. I grabbed a friend and together we came to cheer on the Utes. We showed up just before the end of the 1st quarter and by that time, TCU was up 10-0 and had over 200 yards of offense. So it did not appear like the Utes were headed to a victory. But the Ute defense stepped it up and kept TCU from scoring. They got a interception which lead to a last second field goal going into half time. By this time the score was 10-6 and the Utes were stopping TCU but could not get enough of their own offense to find the end zone.

Our tickets were on the first row of the north end zone. It was cool being that close to the field, but people kept walking in front of us trying to get us to stand and cheer. But our seats paid off in the second half. Twice TCU got within field goal range and tried to score. But the first field goal bounced off the upright and we were able to cheer at the sound of the ball hitting the upright. Then they got back into field goal range and tried again. This time they missed so bad that the ball missed the net behind the goal posts and went right to where I was sitting. Me and my fellow fans all jumped for the ball, which bounced off of me and ended up with the fan behind me. Once again we had plenty to cheer as twice the TCU kicker could have extended their lead but instead failed.

But now there was less than 3 minutes left and Utah had not been able to find the end zone and we were down by 4 points. But that was when the magic happened. Within 2 minutes Utah marched 80 yards down the field and scored their only touchdown. We made that stadium shake with 44000+ fans all jumping and cheering. With 43 seconds left, TCU tried to march down the field to tie or win the game. But our defense not only held them, they intercepted the ball to seal the win.
At this point, my fellow fans began storming the field. I had always enjoyed watching fans do this when I watched games on TV. But here was a chance for me to live it. So I to jump onto the field and joined the jovial crowd, jumping, clapping, cheering and chanting "BCS BCS." I loved it. After the week I've had, this was the best think for me to forget about the election and to be distracted from my upcoming move.

I have no ideas where I will be living on Nov 22 when BYU comes to Utah. But I have a goal to be all moved in and done by 4pm so I can watch the game. Until then Go Utes!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Change is coming

Well our family is going to see some significant change and not just from the political side. We have been trying to sell our house since July and had not had much luck with it. So at the end of October we decided to take our home off the market and just stay in our current home. But out of the blue, an offer came in for our home. (Literally at the last second.) The offer was too low, but we thought it would not hurt to counter with an offer we could accept. So we did and it was accepted.

So we have sold our house and do not even have a new house picked out yet. We had given up looking for a new house and so are completely unprepared. On top of that, we need to be moved out of our current house the weekend before thanksgiving. So the remainder of the year is going to be very busy for us. We will need to move into temporary housing and then find our new house and move into it. I am not a fan of moving and so having to move twice is not fun. But if we end up in a house that we will stay in for the next 10-20 years. I will consider this a successful endeavor.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Ever seen an election from the candidates point of view?

Today I learned that one of my candidates for the Utah State House needed some help putting up door hangers on the homes of frequent voters. I had some time and so came to help. It was an eye opening experience to see the election from the candidates point of view.
He was trying to run a honest and fair campaign. But his opponent had just sent out some mailings with some negative and incorrect statements. He had to then make a choice. Should he not respond and risk having his opponent see that he will do nothing and so encourage her to do more negative ads. Or should he respond with a mailing with his own that attacks his opponent and risk looking like he is now running a negative campaign.

He did not want to go negative and I was impressed with how he responded. He did respond with what could appear as a negative mailing. But he held back from making it a purely negative mailing and instead pointed out some of his opponents ineffectiveness instead.

It must be hard to run for any office. You can be a person who tries to be an fair, honest and an ethical person. But when you run for office, people start saying lots of things about you and many times it is incorrect, false and even a blatant lie. Voters will hear this and regardless of its truth or not will believe it and and use it to decide who to vote for. But if you try to correct the lies you will either not be able to convince others of the truth, or worse. The lie was given just a few days before the election and you don't have any time correct the lie in time for the election.

We have seen this a lot lately here in Utah. 4 years ago a democrat in the county attorney general office suddenly decided to bring up charges against the republican county mayor, while the mayor was running for re-election. The charges were for something that happened over a year earlier, but for some reason, could only be brought up during an election year. The republican mayor lost her seat but was acquitted of all charges after the election. This year a democrat leaked to the press information that suggested that a republican had tried to bribe another legislator to vote a certain way. The republican demanded that the ethics committee investigate and decide well before the election on whether the charges are true or not. He was cleared, but was then left with very little time to get the word out that he was innocent.

This is not one sided, I'm sure republicans have done this to democrats too. But I do not know of any examples currently. But I have grown very tired of tricks like these to get elected. Many voters don't know much about local candidates and learn most of it from headlines only. Some candidates know this and spread untruths about their opponents that they know will make headlines and then influence voters. Because of this, it is very discouraging for an honest and fair person to want to run for office. We need good people, but because bad people do what they do, good people do not step up to serve.

This is a very good reason why I will never run for any office. I would not want anyone to spread falsehoods about me, my family, my beliefs or any other thing I hold dear.

But I was glad to be able to assist a good man in his election bid and I am hopeful that we will elect a good person to represent us.