Monday, September 21, 2009

I've given in

So the whole world is on facebook. I recently found out that my parents are on. So I've given in and have been assimilated into the collective. You can find me on facebook. If you are already on, please send me a friend request and let's get connected.

I now have a facebook account, blog and twitter. Along with all my other websites I like to check: like Not sure if I will be able to keep up on all of them.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Obamacare, because Obama cares

After a summer of hurry to get this passed, then a pull back after Americans complained at town hall meetings. After taking a beating in the polls and seeing public opinion decline, President Obama finally gave us some details on what he wants to do with health care. I was thankful to finally gets some information as all I had gotten so far was commercials from pro-Obama groups saying, "don't believe what anyone says about Obamacare, except us."

I am grateful that Obama wants to increase some regulation of the health care industry and make changes like preventing non coverage due to pre-existing conditions. I am like the idea of tax credits for health insurance.

However I don't like the plan to require every American to have health insurance. There was a time in my life when I did not have it and did not want it at the time. I know that we require car owners to have auto insurance. But someone could choose to not own a car and therefore not purchase auto insurance. But someone could not choose to purchase health insurance. Is it right for us to require all people to purchase some thing they may not want?

This leads me to the public option issue. Requiring people to purchase health insurance will drive them to the government provided insurance. How is this different from England requiring our forefathers to purchase English tea before the revolutionary war? We as Americans did not want to be forced to buy something government provided, or encouraged, then. So why should we buy it now?

And since when did the Constitution stipulate that the people's government needs to provide health care to the people? That is not the reason why the government exists. Why would I trust the government that cannot correctly run a cash for clunkers program and bankrupts social security, medicare and the post office. The government is not the correct organization to run any of those things.

And I'm not buying the tale that the public option will not increase taxes, but instead will be paid for by more effectively running medicare. If the government is already ineffectively running medicare? Then how could we trust them to run anything effectively now?

I do hope that Obama is serious about working with both parties to improve our society. But lack the faith that this could be done when the Democrats in the house will not even let any non-democrat offer any amendments on the house floor and require all legislation be approved by them before it even gets the courtesy of debate. Looks like we are back to politics as usual.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

MCSA finally achieved

Almost 2 years ago, I decided to improve myself by taking some classes and seeking a certification from Microsoft. Doing so would help me know how to perform my job better and make myself more marketable if I ever needed to re-enter the job market. So I began working towards my Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator(MCSA.) It required me to take 4 very difficult tests from Microsoft, each that took a number of on line classes, practice tests and a lot of studying.

The first test was about the XP operating system and proved to be very difficult. I had to take the test twice before I passed it. Microsoft tests in a very different way than any school test I've taken. It is multiple choice but tricky as heck. You need to read every word in the question to ensure you don't miss any details. Because if you miss just one word, you could misinterpret the question and get the answer wrong.

The last test was about using the Microsoft email system and I took it this last week, hoping to pass but if not, leaving time to retake the test to make my goal of passing it before October. Turns out I passed it on the first attempt and have now earned the following certification:

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Yea Football season is finally here

After a very long drought from football all summer long. I will finally get to view some football again this week. The Utes will open their season on Thursday against Utah State and my brother has been very kind to let me come to his place and watch it. (Because Dish still does not have the Mountain channel, jerks) Then BYU will play a very significant game on Saturday against Oklahoma. A win there would help not only the Cougars but the entire Mountain West Conference. So go Cougars, make us all look good.

Last night I stayed up late to draft my last fantasy football team. Even though I drafted in the 10th out of 12 positions. I think I got a good team and I am excited to play.

It is going to be a very enjoyable football season, especially with the higher satellite package with more games to watch. My poor wife will be sick of football very soon. I should do something special for her. Any ideas on what I could do for her to make her OK with me watching football every weekend for the rest of the year? Last year I took her to see Mama Mia. How can you top that?

Friday, August 21, 2009

Busy week but fun nights

I have had a busy week due to a co-worker being on vacation and little old me doing her job as well as mine. But what has kept me going was being able to see the makers of Mystery Science Theater 3000 put on a live show that I caught last night. They riffted on a really old movie called "Plan 9 from outer space." The movie was terrible and so was extremely funny with Mike, Kevin & Bill making fun of it and giving a most funny commentary. They even showed a short from the 40s about an airline flight attendant, which had me rolling in the isle.

They say laughter is the best medicine. I would have to agree. Whenever you find yourself facing a lot of stress or sadness. Find that thing that makes you laugh and smile a lot and get as much of it as you can.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Sick son update

Because Michael's mouth has been hurting all weekend, he has not been eating, drinking or talking much. Monday started out the same way. He was hungry and wanted to eat, but did not dare try because of how his mouth hurt.

When I got home last night I started making dinner. Michael was following me around, grunting and whining, try to get me to give him food. So we decided to try chocolate pudding. We made it and put it in front of him. He played with it, but could not bring himself to eat it for fear of the pain.

After 10 minutes of playing with his food, Jen finally sat down with him and tried to feed it to him. After some coaxing, he finally opened up and took a small bite. Apparently it did not hurt much because he opened his mouth for more, this time a little wider. Before long he had ate the whole bowl of pudding and asked for more. So Jen gave him a second helping. This must have really got his confidence up, because he then asked for more food. We did not want to rush his food intake for fear that he may throw it up. So we had him take a break, during which he then noticed that it did not hurt to talk. So he gleefully yelled that his mouth was feeling better. And to prove it, he talked the rest of the night, ate some garlic bread and another helping of chocolate pudding.

Jen and I were relieved to see him feeling better and eating. But I kind of missed having a quiet house. :)

This morning he woke up, announced that he could talk, drink and eat again today. And proved it by eating 3 waffles and ordering 2 more. He is trying to make up for the lack of food he had for the past weekend. We are just glad to have our normal son back and hope that we can still contain his virus so that other don't get it.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Sick son

Michael began complaining about his mouth on Friday. Jen (Being the wonderful and caring mother that she is) took him to the doctor to get checked out. The doctor found that he had a virus in his mouth and told us that it would get worse before it would get better. And she was certinaly correct.

Saturday he stopped drinking and eating and cried about how his mouth hurt. Because it is a virus we could not give him any medicine to combat the virus. All we could do was give him pain reliever and try to keep him hydrated. This did nothing to stop his constant crying until Mother saved the day. Jen was so patient and caring to her son this weekend. She kept working on finding the thing he wanted, even while he could not talk due to the pain in his mouth. She finally got him distracted by playing children games on the Internet with him for most of the day.

Sunday he was doing worse as the lack of food and water was starting to take a toll on his body. I got worried enough to play the bad guy and force liquids into him. He did not like to be force fed, until he began to feel better by having more liquids in him. Then he began to turn around and is doing much better.

It is the strangest virus that I have ever seen. His tongue has got spots all over it and turned a very bright blue on the sides. Jen will call the doctor about it today. But we hope that we have seen the worse of it and that he will start to improve. Poor guy just has not looked good all weekend.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Staycation report

Last week, we pawn our kids off on my parents (thanks Mom & Dad.) I took work off and we started our staycation. It was nice to be able to just take care of ourselves, stay up as long as we wanted, sleep in as long as we wanted and do whatever we wanted. The 40th anniversary for the first moon landing caused many fine TV shows about the moon, NASA and the Apollo program available for viewing. I watched them until Jen was sick of her lunatic of a husband.

We enjoyed Herriman's local production of "The Music Man." It was nice to feel closer to our new community and enjoy a play. I had never hiked up to the cave in mount timpanogos and so did it. It was very enjoyable to pack up some water, turn on my ipod and take an hour hike up to the cave. The cave was very cool, (literally too.) But it was fun going through and see how nature has created some inner beauty. It was also cool to learn how the caves were discovered as well. If you have not visited this cave yet, get yourself some water and check it out. Your legs will be sore for 2 days, but you will love the memories.

We also enjoyed the latest Sandra Bullock movie, which was actually pretty good, except for a few nudity parts and an exotic dancer scene that will now prevent me from watching the office ever again.

When I was younger I did most of my temple work at the Salt Lake temple and enjoyed the live sessions. But since moving farther away and having kids, it had become increasing difficult to visit the SL temple and so we began attending other temples that were closer and easier to visit. But without any kids, we had the time to return to the SL temple and enjoy a session. It was nice to go through it again, especially since we were married there almost 8 years ago. We also visited Jen's former co-workers at the church office building. I used to come visit her there after my classes and we would enjoy lunch at the cafeteria. We took a trip down memory lane.

On Thursday we got our kids back, enjoyed a quite 24th and then visited with family on Saturday for the annual Nelson family reunion. This reunion was very enjoyable for me. Last year I was one of the presenters for the reunion and I enjoyed it very much. This year I was able to come and just enjoy the time with everyone without having to prepare a presentation. I am looking forward to next year and hope that my kids will enjoy them as they get older.

Our staycation was nice but I will ensure that the next one will be farther away from home. Far enough away that work cannot find me. They were persistent in apologizing for calling me, but continued to do so, especially the last few days of our staycation. My next job hopefully will not require me to be on call 24/7.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Harry Potter and the cliffhanger to get you to see the next movie

Jen & I had the pleasure of seeing the new Harry Potter movie on Wednesday night. Quite an experience to watch it with a theater full of children and teenagers. You could tell that many of them were girls when the Twilight trailer was shown and they all squealed with joy.

I have not read the 6th Harry Potter book yet and so was able to enjoy the movie without knowing the end result.(Except for the fate of a main character which was spilled by an article on sciwire. Darn website!) I enjoyed seeing a new Potter movie after 2 years of waiting. But just like the book does. The movie sets things up for the next movie rather than answer questions and entertaining you. We do learn more about Volumort's past and what is needed to battle him. But I think the good guys lose more than what they gain by the end of the movie and we are left wondering if things will not end up well for Harry.

It is just the the Empire Strikes Back. By the end the good guys are left at the short end of the stick and will have to battle against difficult odds to come out on top. The only thing missing from this movie was Snape admitting to being Harry's real father. Then it would have been exactly like Empire Strikes Back.

I did enjoy the movie and now that I've seen it, I want to read the 6th book. Does anyone have the 6th book on MP3 on in book form that I could borrow? I certainly recommend seeing it and helping the movie earn a ridiculous amount of money. The love stories involving Ron are very interesting and fun to watch.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Where am I?

ARRRRRR!!! Help! To busy to blog. Need vacation soon.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Crazy walk

Last night after dinner. Jen felt tired so I offered to take the kids on a walk while she rested. We are still new to our neighborhood and so I thought I would explore. We took a different route then our normal walks. But it was fun to see and meet new people. We ended up close to a county park. So we decided to go check it out.

While we were walking towards it I noticed a large group of people standing on the completely opposite end of the park. The play ground was total empty so we headed there. But just as we were getting close to it. A large fire engine pulls up and a plains clothes man gets out and starts hooking up hoses to the fire hydrant. The kids enjoyed watching the fire truck and then enjoyed the play ground. But then all the people from the group walked over and after arriving, the fireman began spraying water from his water cannon into the park. The kids loved running through the falling water and I just stood there dumbfounded at the sudden water party that materialized around us. I tried asking others if this was a ward or neighborhood party, but did not learn what it really was from anybody who knew.

We enjoyed the now water park until Karen reminded me that she had to use the potty for the 3rd time. There was no bathrooms at the park so we started our walk home. But we were still a ways away from home and Karen started doing the "I really need to go" dance. So I asked a man who was just getting home if my daughter could borrow his bathroom. He was kind enough to say yes and I sent Karen in while Michael and I admired an incredibly cleaner house then ours.

But then Karen stuck her head out of the bathroom and said she needed help. We come in to find that she went messy in her pants. (Guess she did not make it in time) and had made a mess in their bathroom. So here I am, in a stranger's very clean house, with two soaking wet children and a messy daughter with no change of clothes or diapers. Our walk had just started like any other. But it certainly did not end up like I'm used to.

After a clean up of my daughter and the bathroom. (And a chance for my daughter to learn what it means to go commando.) We resumed our walk home and after petting two dogs and saying hi to a neighbor, we finally reached home. Both kids needed baths to clean up for our "Walk." I don't know if Jen will let me take the kids out by myself again. But it certainly made our day anything but mundane.

So how was your day?

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Carnivals and fun times

This is one of the best times of the year. The end of June till July 4th has plenty of community events like carnivals, festivals, parades and fireworks. Our kids are at the age where they really enjoy these activities and we as parents really enjoy seeing them smile. Here are a few of the events we did this past week.

Last Saturday we visited my parents in Cedar Hills. Their town was having a family festival that weekend. Thanks to grandma and grandpa, Karen and Michael got free passes to the festival where they rode on ponies, got face paintings, played in bounce houses and played bingo. We also enjoyed a BBQ with my parents and swam in their pool. We got home just in time to watch the Herriman Days fireworks from our own back yard.

Then on Monday, we took advantage of a gift card we had to a family fun center called "Boondocks" in Draper. It was a very short drive and lots of fun. Jen took Karen on the go carts while I took Michael in the bumper boats. (Michael is still too short for the cars.) We then took the kids into the "Kiddie Cove" which is a very large jungle gym type of place. Karen had a blast in there but Michael was nervous to go in. So I crawled through it with him and found myself enjoying things like a kids going down slides and stuff. I was probably breaking a rule by crawling through there with him, and it was not built for people of my size, but I absolutely loved it. I then took Karen on the bumper boats and we left determined to return again soon.

Last night Riverton started their town days events and had a family night at the carnival. All rides were only 1 ticket and you could get 2 tickets for a dollar. So for only $10 we rode the ferris wheel, the giant slide, the kids loved the mini roller coaster, train, cars and other rides. I even paid money to try the games that are always a cheat. But was able to pop a balloon with a dart and win a small stuffed California raisin for Karen. Jen was so proud that her man could win his daughter something. (Still a scam if you ask me.)

Doing these family events this past week has been an absolute pleasure for Jen and me. We have loved giving our kids enjoyable memories. And we have more to do this week. We will enjoy a parade on Friday evening and then fireworks on Saturday night. Do any of our family or friends want to join us?

Friday, June 26, 2009

Someone famous has died

My brother put this on his twitter and it was so good. I just had to share. Many of us saw this happen on TV this week. Click on the picture to see more.

Phil is on twitter

So I decided to try something. I will add my twitters to my blog. So when I twitter, it will show up here. I had to go public with my twitter in order to do this. Which means I will need to keep an eye on who follows me. I don't want people trying to sell me stuff via twitter. So if this works, I will keep it going. But if I get to many sales pitches or offers to check out someone's web cam for $3.99 a minute. Then I will remove my twitter from public access the stay private.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

1766 vistors and counting

I have reached the highly valued number of 1766 visitors to my blog. When I started my blog, I had no idea who or how many would actually read my ramblings. But surprisingly many have read as well as commented my blog.
I had received well wishes during happy events. Others had empathized with me about issues I've faced. I have received some good comments on political discussions. One was from an anonymous commenter who raised some good points and I would have loved to known who the commenter is. Some I've agreed with, some I have not, but all I have enjoyed discussing.

I have also enjoyed linking to other blogs and keeping in touch with others. Like with my sister in California, a brother in Wyoming. Family and friends around the valley.

We have been encouraged to keep journals or diaries for future prosperity. My blog is the closing thing I have to that.

Thanks for reading. There will be more rants and ramblings in the future. Especially when football season starts up again. I can't wait for that.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Random things

June in Utah is normally a very hot and dry time. But this year it has been most unusual. Rain on most of the days, including my birthday. Not just small rain storms, but major downpours. Living in the desert, we are always thankful for rain. But I still cannot get used to it. Must be what it feels like to live in Seattle.

The new temple is having an open house for the next few months. Yesterday we took the kids and went through it. It is very lovely. I loved the design of the building, inside and out. Very good art, stone stairs and big light fixtures. Unfortunately, Michael wanted to touch everything and so was running all over the place. It was very difficult to keep him in line. Other than that, we enjoyed it very much.

I have been asked by a few friend on what is the best movie I have seen so far this year. I have seen X-men, Star Trek, Angels and Demons, Terminator and Up. (Only paid for 1 of them.) Of all the movies, the one I want to go back and see again is Star Trek. It was very good and I still enjoy looking up the trailer for it on the Internet.

While I blog I am checking out a new show called "Wipeout." It looks like the American version of MXC. I enjoyed that show and so far, I am enjoying this one two. Lost of spills, slips, falls and mud baths. Check it out if you want to laugh.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

34 years on the planet...still cannot find a good cheese steak sandwich

34 years ago:
Wheel of Fortune started.
The Pittsburg Steelers won the super bowl.
Charlie Chaplin gets knighted by the queen of England.
The Vietnam War officially ends.

Bill Gates starts a small company named Microsoft.

Jimmy Hoffa disappears.
The last Apollo space flight is conducted by NASA.

Robert E. Lee finally receives a full pardon and is restored to full citizenship.
Saturday Night Live begins on NBC.
The Cincinnati Reds win the world series.
Andrew Dufresne escapes from Shawshank State Prison.
A very unusual boy was born on June 9th (Not an actual picture of boy, but a very good likeness.)

Monday, June 1, 2009

New Twilight New Moon Trailer

This post is brought to you by an effort to stay ahead of Jen by having more posts than her. Men always try to make everything into a competition, don't they?

The trailer for the new Twilight movie "New Moon" has been released. It looks cool. Check it out at the below URL:

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Prop 8- The people's will

Today we learned that the California supreme court voted 6-1 to uphold the recent voter passed constitutional amendment to define marriage as between a woman and a man. I felt 2 things when I heard this.

1. Surprise. This court was the same court that despite a previous voter ban on same sex marriage, disregarded and removed it. When pro marriage groups got enough signatures to place prop 8 on the ballot and asked the court to delay removing the ban so that voters could say their voice (again) on the matter. They said no and let 18000 same sex unions proceed before the people had a chance to vote. So this court has been very supportive of same sex marriage. I expected them to slap the people in the face again and strike down prop 8. But they upheld it. That surprised me.

2. Gratitude. I have always felt that the ultimate power should always reside with the people. Even if the people make a poor choice or chose to not make a choice(like only voting in general elections and missing primaries.) Ultimate power should still reside with the people. The people of California had spoken in 2004 and again in 2008 that they wanted marriage between one woman and one man. Even though the 2008 election was won overwhelming by liberal or left leaning candidates. This conservative prop still passed. I think the court saw this and President Obama has also seen this as the will of the people and both have finally fallen on the side of the people on this issue. The fact that it was a close vote does not change the fact that the majority have spoken. People can no longer blame specific organizations or individuals (like Miss California) for this. The people have spoken and that should be accepted. If the election remained close but those for same sex marriage would have won. They would then have accepted the will of the people. This could happen in the future and so if people are for same sex marriage, they should uphold the court's ruling. Or they cannot rely on the people's will when it falls on their side.

I think that the California supreme court is still a friend to same sex unions as they ruled that the previous 18000 same sex marriages are still legal, even though the people voted twice to outlaw it. This issue will return very soon. We may need a federal constitution amendment to address it permanently. But proponents of gay marriage know they would lose that fight and so will keep their fight on the state level.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Editorials I found to be funny

Lots of news about Obama & Pelosi recently. I found some editorials humorist and thought I would share them.

Friday, May 8, 2009

There's Klingons off the starboard bow

Today I got to see the new Star Trek movie on an IMAX screen and have been happy the whole day because of it. Many people have asked me about the movie and this is what I've shared with them.

Back in 1980, if you saw "Star Wars: Empire Strikes Back" in theaters during the first week it was out. You learned that Dark Vader was Luke's father from the movie. But if you saw it after the 1st week it was out. You learned that from someone who already saw the movie and was talking about it. The movie was that good that people were talking about it for a whole week after seeing it.

That is how Star Trek is going to be. The movie is so good that people will be talking about it after they see it. I think that it will be this year's "Iron Man" or "The Dark Knight." It should make around 100 million this weekend and I will be helping it get to that number as I already want to see it again. So unless you want to learn about the movie from other's descriptions, you should see it as soon as you can.

I was also impressed with another thing. This is the 11th movie and there have been 5 TV shows in the Star Trek universe. Which would make it hard to create an original movie in the series since it has done many different shows already. Plus you don't want to conflict with previous shows. This movie was able to tie itself into the past movies and shows. But it was also able to find a way to free itself from those past movies and start something that they can take into any direction they want. That was the most impressive thing to me. They can make as many sequels as they want and not worry about conflicting with previous movies.

So if you have planned on seeing the movie at any time, I recommend doing it soon. Let the movie creators be the one to show you the new story rather than learning about it from someone else. Everyone will be talking about it, trekkies and non-trekkies. So get your tickets now.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Free movies yea!!!!

One of the good and bad things about my job is that I get solicited by salesmen left and right. I normally do not care for the sales phone calls I get frequently. But some companies have taken a new approach to getting the word out on their products. They invite IT guys like me to a movie theater, give a sales presentation about a product and then provide free movie tickets with drinks and snacks. They wait until the summer movie season when good movies are available to view and then start their selling campaign.

I have received may invites to these sales presentations and they work on me. At least at getting me to come to their sales presentation. Last year I saw Iron Man, The Dark Knight & Wall-E for free. This week I already have been invited to see the new X-Men movie and Star Trek. I am looking forward to the Star Trek movie as Jen was able to get a baby sitter and we will enjoy the movie together.

I feel somewhat guilty as I have not purchased anything from these companies who do these promotions and our current economy does not make it look likely for me to do so anytime soon. But I certainly do learn a lot about the new products and new technological options that are available. That should result in future purchases. Until then, I will enjoy some good movies for free.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A Busy Disney Weekend

We had a busy and fun weekend that I just have to talk about it. As you may know, we recent moved from West Valley to our current home in Herriman. We learned that our old stake was putting on the play "Beauty and the Beast." So we decided to take the kids and check it out last Friday night. As we were driving there, I suddenly felt like we should not have done it as it would result in a late night and we had to get up early the next day to help clean the church and help my brother move. But I did not regret going after the play was over.

Thanks to a friend we had second row seats, which gave the kids a close up view of the play. Many of our old ward members were in the cast. Karen was mesmerised and Michael was actually entertained enough to watch. He loved all the props and wonderful costumes. When the lights went out and they began setting up for the next scenes, he would get excited and wonder what color lights they would use next and what props they would use. He loved clapping after every song. Both kids watched the entire first act and most of the second. Michael finally became to squirmy to watch the rest of the play so I took him into a children area that had a video of the play showing and watched the rest from there. The play was fantastic and we all enjoyed it.

We also enjoyed seeing and visiting with members of our old ward. Many of them did not know where we had ended up. So we had to share with them our moving experience and how we finally ended up in our new home in Herriman. We loved seeing everyone again and it made us a little home sick for all our old friends.

The next day was Saturday and we were up early helping to clean the church. Then it was off to Monte's place to help him load up and move to his new home in Riverton, which is only a few miles away from us. Monte and Cat were very prepared and had everything boxed up and most of the boxes already moved to the new place. We just needed to load up the big stuff into the van and move it. It was one of the better moves that I have helped with, despite being rained on most of the day. I've always disliked showing up to help someone move and they did not have anything packed.

So we had a busy weekend, but was happy to enjoy time with family and at the play. As well as helping a brother move closer to us.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Pictures from Starfest

The shirt Brent Spiner liked
Brent Spiner
They had an actual Delorian there!! So cool!
Lucius Malfoy and Luna Lovegood
Awesome actual size Doctor Who Tardis

Freaks, geeks and actors...oh my

After wading through a major snow storm, Jen and I finally reach Denver Colorado for this year's Starfest Science Fiction Convention. We love going to these things and always have fun. We played Texas Holdem poker, bought Jen a new dagger, hung out with Carl & Erica, listened to Brent Spiner who played Data and took lots of pictures of peoples in strange costumes and made a point not to take pictures of people dressed in costumes they should not have been wearing. (Many girls dress up in the sexy costumes but should not.)

I went to a panel that was going to discuss the Star Trek Movies. They guy running the panel showed up but reported that he had to move his car and so would be back. He took 20 minutes to park and I got sick of waiting. So I jumped up and ran an impromptu panel with the people who were there. It was fun and enjoyable to all. When the guy got back, I let him take over, but he was not very exciting. After the panel was done, many people walked up to me and said they enjoyed me more than the other guy and that I should run these things. I did enjoy it and thought it was a good idea. So the next time we go to this, I will try to get on a panel. Carl thought we could redo a panel I did for Mountain Con about space history.

Brent Spiner was very entertaining. One day we boarded the elevator and found Brent on it. He loved my Weird Al shirt and told me how his girl friend is friends with Al's wife and so Brent went to his wedding. Brent has been to many conventions and so knew how to entertain. We laughed the whole time. The guy who played Nelix on Voyager was also there and gave the best line. A guy got up and started telling him about how he loved watching the show with his Mom and that they named their cats after the shows characters. Nelix responded "I think you have me confused with someone who cares." He was kidding but I thought that was a very funny response.

We saw a lot of trailers to upcoming movies and it got me excited for the summer movie season. Star Trek, Angels and Demons, Harry Potter, Night at the Museum and Transformers look very good.

I will add some pictures we took soon.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Starfest party in Denver

Jen and I have always enjoyed a sci fi convention in Denver called Starfest. We decided to come to the convention again this year and see the guy who played Data and other actors. We decided to fly this time so that we would not endure a long drive. We were glad we did as the weather was very bad. Denver has been getting slammed by a big now storm all day today. We were able to fly in and get to our hotel before the storm hit us. But my brother Carl is trying to drive across Wyoming to get to Denver. He got as far as Rawlins before he found a closed road. So he is trying to take smaller roads through the mountains of Colorado to reach us. We sure hope he gets here in one piece.

Once we are all arrived, we will spend the entire weekend here enjoying some time without kids and so without having to be parents. That is a welcome treat for both of us.

See ya on Monday.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Jazz game that actually went well

Me and some co-workers were given free tickets to the Jazz game last night. Jen wanted me to have an enjoyable guys night out and so was OK with me going. The Jazz played the LA Clippers who have a losing season. The Jazz were predicted to win, but they were also predicted to beat Golden State and Minnesota too. So I did not assume the Jazz would win anything with the way they had been playing lately.

Surprisingly the Jazz played very well. Beating the Clippers by more that 20. The most intense moment of the game was when Baron Davis purposely pushed a Jazz player to the floor during a rebound. Davis was clearly fouling and flagrantly as well. But the refs could not figure that out and so called a double foul on both Davis and the Jazz player. The crowd was livid with both the refs and Davis and made sure he knew it. Every time Davis got the ball the crowd booed very loudly. It things like this that you cannot experience by watching a game on TV. You just have to be there.

While at the game, tried to twitter on my phone. Surprisingly it was very easy to do so. So I twittered during the game and was able to chat with my brother who was watching the game from home. With how easy it is to twitter, I think I will continue to do so. You can catch me at the below URL:

Monday, April 13, 2009

I'm on twitter

So my brother is on twitter. The same brother who inspired me to get a blog. I guess I will continue to follow him as I am now on twitter too. So if you want to follow my antics closer, feel free to check me out on

I'm still learning how to use this thing so don't be surprised if I take awhile before I get interesting.

You can follow me here:

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

City council meeting

So I now live in a new city and want to be involved in my community. So when Jen asked me what I wanted to do for my night off she was inviting me to have. I did what any other politically conscious and historically studying person would do. I went to the Riverton city council.

This was a chance for me to learn about my new city and see what issues are prevalent in my new neighborhood. The main issue discussed was a new recovery home that was set up in a neighborhood where recovering drug addicts go to receive treatment. The main issue was that this home was set up in a neighborhood without public notice and without proper licence obtained from the city. So many citizens who live on that street were furious to suddenly see cops delivering drug addicts to their neighborhood and city leaders were working hard to correct the problem.

I was glad to see how organized the meeting went and how prepared the city officials were to address the items on the agenda. I was able to chat with the mayor after the meeting and unfortunately learned that the CERT team that I am leading will see some changes because my team is in both Herriman and Riverton city. But other than that, I enjoyed the events and feel educated on my city processes.

If you have not done so, I recommend attending at least one city council meeting. You will be enlighten and educated. You may also be bored but if you needed to petition your city for something, you will be glad that you at least saw what happens before you start.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Happy April Fools Day

Looks like mother nature likes to play a joke on April 1st. Today's weather is far from a nice spring day. But other than that, I do enjoy this day.

Anything happen to you yet?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Lots of work

We did a major IT change at work this past weekend. This results in 2 things.

1. I spend a large amount of time making changes to the network, computers, software and a pleura of other changes.
2. I spend even more time addressing the bugs that pop up and the user issues and training that has resulted from the large change.

So I've been very busy the past few days and it has finally slowed down to where I can blog. I am excited for the changes we have made with our system. It is now a more secure system and I have more responsibility with translates into greater job security.

Jen and I finally found an out of town excursion that we can do. In April we will fly to Denver and enjoy a sci-fi convention that we've enjoyed before. Thanks to my Mom taking our kids and Carl for getting us discount ticket. That, plus spring finally arriving, has made life look happier and fun.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Driving on nerves

Yesterday began like any normal day. I got in my car and started driving to work. But then I found a fork in the road, literally. A fork got into one of my tires and caused a flat. So I had to put on the donut tire and find a place to replace the flat tire. I ended up a wal-mart who said they could not patch the tire and I would need a new one. So there went 90 bucks.

Then I noticed my licence plate which reminded me that my car registration expires this month. This surprised me as I normally get a notice in the mail that I need to renew it. I guess with us moving recently, the government mail could not catch up to us. So I had to get the car inspected. There went another 90 bucks.

After getting the car fixed up and repaired to pass inspection. I then had to get it registered. Thankfully I was able to do it where I got the car inspected. But it sure was expensive. There went another 90 bucks

While I was trying to get my car problems addressed. By poor wife called to let me know she was not feeling very well and asked me to come home and take care of the family. I was never able to get out of Riverton when I started for work this morning. So it was not a long drive to return home.

So when I started my day, it looked like it would be a normal day. But it ended up with me working from home, running around getting my car fixed and spending 270 dollars. I'm glad that everyday is not like today.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

The drill is complete and now I can look at myself in the mirror.

Saturday was the first in a while where I did not have a full day full of CERT classroom training. We did have a city wide disaster drill that I participated in. Everyone was suppose to meet at the church to report their findings of any emergency cards left by the city. The first one to arrive was suppose to be the one in charge. I was one of the last ones to arrive and when I walked in I asked, "whose in charge?" no one responded. One thing we learned in CERT training class is that if no one answers to that question, then you are in charge. That was when I realized that I really need to be prepared to act in an emergency, because if no one wants to be the one in charge, then no help is ever organized.

We got organized and tested. Everything went well. We will have much more fun in September when we test again. That time we will run a full test, with people pretending to be hurt and everything.

We have been slowly trying to get our house set up. Today we decided to hang a 5x3 foot mirror on the wall. The wall Jen chose to place the mirror on was the over 10 foot high wall that follows the stairs down to the basement. The mirror is over 50 pounds and so it was quite a challenge to figure out how to hang it on this tall wall. Because of the stairs we could not place a ladder in front of the wall.

Thankfully we have vaulted ceilings and this wall did not go all the way up to the ceiling. So instead of coming from the bottom up to the top of the wall, we brought the mirror from over the top of the wall into place. I had to borrow my neighbor and his ladder to make it work. But surprisingly it did. Now we have the mirror hanging in our family room and it makes the room look so much bigger, not to mention nicer too.

Enjoy the pictures of it.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Whenever danger is near...never fear...Neils is near.

Shortly after we moved into our new home, neighbors and church members started asking us about ourselves. I made the mistake of saying that I like to be involved in the community. I was referring to being involved politically. But saying that got many people excited and they asked me to serve as our neighborhood CERT team leader. CERT stands for community emergency response team. Meaning that if a disaster ever strikes that is big enough the prevent firemen, policemen, medical providers and government programs from reaching you during a disaster, the CERT team is all there is to help until you do get help from outside.

I said yes but did not realize what I was getting into. I am glad to help and wanted to learn more about our community's disaster plans. But I hope to never have to be used. For the past 3 Saturdays I have been attending a CERT training course. There I learned how to put out small fires, how to lift large objects off of people, perform light search and rescue, how to triage and treat people for injuries. I also learned how to set up a command center and organize rescue efforts.

This Saturday I get to put my newly acquired skills to use during a city wide test. We will pretend that there was a 6.8 size earthquake. There is fires and broken utilities. Main roads are impassable or closed to emergency vehicles. I need to lead a team in checking my entire neighborhood to see what damage there is(as shown by damage cards left on homes by the city.) Then I need to communicate this up the chain to my leader who has communication to the city.

This should be very interesting and doing it once will make it easier to do during a real disaster. I will blog about it after our test. Until then, I am going to look forward to it being over.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Officially moved in

We are now officially moved into our new home. It became official over the weekend after I found the last of my surround sound stereo speakers and got them hooked up. Then, after the kids were in bed, we enjoyed a movie we had not watch in some time. "The Princess Bride." Even though comedies like that one do not have need for surround sound, it still made the movie much more enjoyable.

Now I can bring out all my Star Wars, Lord of the Rings and other movies and enjoy them at 5.1 level enjoyment. I think I will put in the latest DVD version of Monty Python and the Holy Grail next . Care to join me?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Yes we can...spend more money we don't have

Just watched President Obama give his first talk to Congress. Had to laugh when he tried to start his speech before he was introduced. Speaker Pelosi had to flag him down that it was not his turn yet. I guess it is OK for a new president to make inexperienced mistakes in a speech. Unfortunately he is going to make inexperienced mistakes with our government.

I agree with him that we need to cut spending and our deficit. We need to find ways to reel in health care costs and should lead the way in finding alternate energy sources. But I had to laugh when he bragged that his recent 800+ Billion (that billion with a B) spending bill did not have any earmarks in it. But it had more pork than immediate stimulus money.

I like to compare what Obama is doing to what both Regan and W. Bush did when they entered office. All Presidents entered office while the country was in a economy down turn and needed a boost. Regan and Bush cut taxes, giving Americans more money to spend, which gave the economy a boost and brought us out of the recession. It even gave the government more money in tax revenue. But Obama does not want to give Americans more money to spend (Unless you count $26 a month as more money) Instead he spent the money himself on what he wanted to buy. I hope his spending bill does help our economy I really do, but even his administration has admitted that it does not guarantee success and is looking to spend more money.

I hope our country does not takes steps towards socialism. Doing so would punish those who work hard for success and reward those to purposely do less and take more. But I fear that some of the changes Obama, Pelosi and Reid are making are taking us on that path.