Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Our trip to Vegas

This past week we got a much needed vacation.  It was for our anniversary, but because our anniversary is May 30th (The end of the month) I wouldn't be able to get time off from work because I have to be there for the end of the month, so we took off early.  It also happened to be my brother Chance's high school graduation.  I wouldn't say the stars all lined up, but given our circumstances, it was pretty good.  We decided since we would be in St. George for Chance's graduation, we would just keep going down I-15 to Vegas.

We got in on Tuesday with enough time to play pickelball.  I'm not great at the game, but Jocelyn likes it and there is no where to play up here, so we had to play while we were down there.  Jocelyn has beat me the last 2 or 3 games we played, and she also beat me the first game we played Tuesday, but I won the next two.  Not a huge achievement, but I felt better.  We played again the next morning after I went to the dentist, and I beat her again...but I still couldn't beat Chance.  Grrr...

So Chance had his graduation at two.  It was short, and pretty good.  Chance gave a little two minute speech because he was student body president.  He did a good job.  Then some more speakers, they walked through the D, and then sang the school hymn.  Say what you want after this confession, but I got a little teary eyed listening to the hymn and singing along the words I could remember.  I love DHS dangit, and I always will.

So anyways, we'll skip the little details of eating dinner and driving the next morning and get to where we got to Las Vegas.  Jocelyn has only ever driven through or flown out, and I've been there mostly for sports.  Been on the strip once, but I'm no pro of Sin City.  We checked in to our little hotel.  9 floors is little for Vegas, but in Provo or St. George that is a good size.  Ate lunch at Chipotle right next to UNLV and then went to the strip.  The M&M and Coca-Cola places were not as cool as I remembered, but it wasn't bad.  Jocelyn was really excited to see the fountains at Bellagio, so we went after the shops.  Unfortunately the steak had some issues with Jocelyn's stomach and she wasn't able to really see the fountains.  So we went home and that was the night. 

Due to Jocelyn's sickness and our overall tiredness, we slept in (that's actually a theme of this trip...sleeping) and didn't do much for a while.  We tried to go see Pete Rose at Caesars Palace, but due to the lack of traffic and over abundance of parking on the strip, we didn't make it.  Let's just say I hate traffic, I hate getting lost, and I hate being hungry.  There was plenty of that during the hour, so we gave up on seeing Pete, ate dinner, and then saw Bill Cosby and Treasure Island.  Jocelyn loves Bill Cosby so we made sure to go.  He was pretty funny.  Some of the crowd was either drunk, handicapped, or both, so there were lots of people yelling during the show.  One person even had a conversation with Bill on stage.  He was cool about it the first time, but the second time, she ruined the show and he called security.  It was rather humorous.  After the show we tried to see the fountains again, but it was too windy and it was cancelled.

Saturday we slept in, decided to walk the strip from our hotel instead of trying to find parking, and we went from where we were (near the top, a little north of the Wynn and Encore, and west of the convention center) all the way down to Mandalay Bay.  That is a long long walk.  Seeing the hotels/casinos was neat.  Before this trip we never really got up close to them, so we did a little hotel sight seeing...we walked through some of them on the way down.  We were going to do the bodies exhibit at the Luxor, but it was 1) More expensive than we thought, 2) Not super high on the priority list, 3)We just ate lunch and didn't want to risk being grossed out.  Anyways, we made it to Mandalay Bay, did the aquarium walk through, and enjoyed it.  After we were quite tired, and took a break.  We soon after discovered that they had a monorail, and we took that up to Caesar's Palace.  I found out the Mike Vick would be at the store that we tried to find to see Pete Rose.  I was much more excited about this, so I made sure we went.  He didn't say much...like hey, and we didn't get to take a picture with him.  That kinda bummed me out, but it was still awesome to meet him and get a picture signed by him.  Then we went to the fountains and we watched them twice because the first time a branch was in the way and Jocelyn wanted a better angle.  After that we took the monorail back to the hotel and passed out.

Sunday...if you guessed we slept in, you are correct.  We didn't do much on Sunday.  We went and saw the Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign, drove around on the old strip on Freemont street, and then went back to the hotel.  I watched the Spurs game, she read a book...relaxing but awesome.  That was basically the day.

Monday, we didn't get to sleep in as much because we had to check out by 11.  We drove to St. George, picked up the cat, visited with my family, and then headed home to Provo.  Lots of driving for one day, but it wasn't awful.  Plus our car gets decent gas mileage.  So that's the trip.  All in all, it was a success, and we both enjoyed it.  Now that we've been back at work for a day, I'm already looking forward to the next time we get a vacation.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Best NBA lineups of all time

In honor of the NBA playoffs, and a discussion I had with Brady the other day, I am making my top 2 all time line ups in the NBA.  I'll give you both teams, plus 2 to make a 12 team total, and I'll say why I picked player 1 over player 2 and whatever else I feel like.  This is based on players during their prime, obviously not right now.

Team 1 -
PG - John Stockton
SG - Michael Jordan
SF - Larry Bird
PF - Tim Duncan
C - Shaq

Team 2 -
PG - Magic Johnson
SG - Kobe Bryant
SF - LeBron James
PF - Karl Malone
C - Dwight Howard

Reserves -
Ray Allen
Kareem Abdul-Jabar

Stockton over Magic - It's not a total homer pick, just mostly.  I think he the most pure point guard in the game (as in passing, setting others up, fulfilling the PG role) but I do know Magic is the far better athlete, scorer, and basketball player.  Also, by having guys who need the ball on offense (MJ, Bird, Shaq), I thought I'd put a guy who probably passed more than was necessary.

Magic is on this least because he is Magic, I don't need to defend this pick

MJ over Kobe - Duh. It's MJ, best player ever. Read the above sentence and change Magic to Michael.

Kobe - Closer, killer, good defender as well.

I actually hate both SG's, but I respect both of them.  MJ for the pushoff, Kobe for being a good Laker (I don't hate anyone else for this though).

Bird over LeBron - Larry Legend, clutch (shot at LeBron) and was dominant.  Plus he won executive of the year today, and he's won coach of the year, and mvp, and lots of stuff.  Only person to ever do it.

Lebron because he is the most athletic player to play the game, could play PG if needed, and can defend all 5 positions.

Duncan over Malone - I probably get the most flack for this one because I live in Utah, and I love both players while most people in Utah only love Malone, and hate Duncan.  A lot of this pick is also because he is paired with Shaq.  I like the big combo's that I put together.  One dominant defender, with one dominant offensive player, while the other is still solid at offense and defense respectively.  Duncan has more all defense teams while malone has more all nba teams.  This would be a coin flip for the most part, but I think Duncan is the better PF.  Good thing I don't live near most of my friends, they would probably kill me for this...or try that is.

Malone - 2nd leading scorer all time, tough, homer pick, but even still, I'd put him here if I weren't a Jazz fan.

Shaq over Dwight.  Basically the same guy, except Shaq is meaner, more mature, and more dominant on offense.

Dwight - Athletic freak, still developing, but is a monster.

Ray Allen - Great shooter, and we needed one of those, plus in his prime, he could do a lot more
Kareem - Was on a lot of all nba & all defense teams... This is a respect pick and I wanted one more big.

Agree, disagree? post your own....but no bill russel talk.  he can take those 11 rings and shove them (darn randon).  Could you imagine bill trying to stop Shaq or Dwight? He would get trucked.  Also, I have too many Lakers on this team.  oh well.  if OKC wins right now it makes it all better.  Peace out, and let the arguments begin.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mothers' Day

Attempts to start consistently blogging again: 7(low estimate).  Day of current attempt: 2.  Overview: Getting to day 3 is expected. Day 5 would be awesome.  Let's keep it going.

So Mothers' Day (or is it Mother's? Jocelyn and I were discussing that today) means two things for me.  Number one is a celebration of Mom, which seems pretty obvious.  Number two means family.  Four of the past five years, someone from my immediate family has been on a mission, and Mothers' Day is one of the two days all year missionaries can call home.  So it's always a good day.

Five years ago I was able to call home from my second area.  It was the first phone call I had on my mission and it was a lot of fun, but made me homesick.  My companion was about to go home and I was barely out five months.  I remember finding it weird how much my families voices changed...namely Chance and Konner.  Although I suppose it was just as weird the next Mothers' Day when I was in my fifth area during swine flu time.  Either way, both were good times, and both made me grateful for family.

The last two years it has been Logan calling home.  I don't know why, but missionaries the world over are allowed to use Skype to call home.  While I feel slightly cheated, it was good to see Logan.  He probably thinks I've put on all the weight that I think he's lost, but no big deal.  Seeing Logan is always fun.  I am surprised I don't miss him more, but I suppose that's what being married and in college does to you.  If I were still living at home, I think it would have been harder and getting to these last three months would have taken forever.  Moral of the story: Mothers' Day is extra special when there is a missionary out.

Now to the reason for Mothers' Day.  My mom.  I love my mom, but that's a given.  Everyone says their mom is the best, and I'm no exception to that rule; however, I think it's especially true in my case because my mom was the right mom for me.  I was and am a fairly decent person (and I'm humble about it) but I can be stubborn, argumentative, sarcastic, and a pain in several places.  I'm pretty sure anyone softer than my mom would have given up, but anyone stricter might have kicked me out.  So thank you mom for being the right mom for me.

This isn't to say my mom is perfect, because she's not, and I think she'd be the first to admit it.  But I have no serious gripes or complaints.  She only ever missed two semi big sporting events (as big as city league can be...and that's also throwing in that most of my life, I wasn't on winning teams until we moved) and for as many sports as I played growing up, that is a great percentage.  I think she might have gone to more of my high school games than my dad did.  The only things I ever got frustrated at my mom for were things like "Hey you should go to work" or "Eat more vegetables, they're good for you" or "Don't buy that"...normal mom things that every mom does and it only makes you a better person.  But like I said, I can be stubborn...and did I mention lazy?  So that right there is a pretty awesome record.

My family was never exactly awesome at doing FHE, but we still did them enough that I remember them, and they found ways to cater to four boys: ice cream and sports/games.  My dad always did a good job of making us conduct and telling stories, but mom was the one who really taught us.  Two of my greatest accomplishments in this life...no, not winning my fantasy football league this year (though that is definitely top 5 material)...have been going on a mission and getting married in the temple.  I'm not sure how my mom got in engrained in my head, but she somehow did.  Like I said earlier, I believe I'm a pretty decent person, and I believe a good 95% of that comes from my mom.  She somehow got mission and temple in there clear enough that I never did anything to jeopardize them.  She helped build a good foundation that I now have to start building on by my lazy stubborn self...and I'm grateful for it.

Thank you Mom for making me who I am today.  I definitely have my flaws, but that's not your fault.  You have done the best you can and that's all any son can ask for.  Thank you for always being there, being someone I could talk to, and being a good example.  I love you very much, and have a happy Mothers' Day.

Saturday, May 12, 2012


Let it be known to everyone everywhere: I do not like soccer.  As a kid, I used to play, and I was a pretty awesome goalie.  That was way back in 2nd grade, so clearly, that is valid because that is some competitive well played stuff, where I had a fair amount of shut outs (in my mind).  Granted, my team was so good that I would sit down a lot in the box because the ball was never on my side of the field.  I also did handstands on occasions and would work on my pull ups.  Moving on...I played one more year and called it quits.  I just wasn't a fan, and I'm still not.  When everyone wanted to play soccer on p-days during my mission, I would long for a real football to play with...and then on defense I would run at people with the ball and maybe knock them over.  In horrible spanish I would say i don't know how to play and plead ignorance.  It was awesome what I got away with, so I felt better about playing soccer those days.

For as much as I don't like soccer (let's say on a scale of 1-10 it's an 8 or something), there are certain trump cards.  If anything on my like scale is an 8 (or whatever I rank soccer on my hate scale) I will watch in support of the things I like.  That list includes, country, family, friends, high school, Mexico, championships, and girls wife.  **In high school it would have been girls, but now that I'm married, it's one girl**

Country - During world cup and Olympics, I like soccer.  And then when the U.S. rips my heart out, I wonder why I let them trick me - again.

Family - All my brothers have at one point played soccer.  I wasn't so supportive in little league, but I'm better now that I appreciate family more than I used to.  This could apply to being supportive of a good friend, and it definitely helps when said friends and family play for Dixie High School.

Mexico - I try and keep tabs on Puebla, but I'm slipping.

Championships - I was cheering for Real Salt Lake when I heard they were playing for the championship.

Wife - If she wants to go, we will go, or if she is every playing (I don't know when that would ever be) I would go be supportive.

So anyways, a couple of those conditions were met this weekend. My brother (1) plays for Dixie High School (2) and this weekend they played in the semi-finals, and then played for the championship(3)...and my wife wanted to be out in the sun (4).  So I went and watched.  Maybe I've been so closed minded for so long, but I didn't mind actually watching the game for the game.  I respect how much soccer players run, but I never respected the strategy of trying one side of the field, going back to the defense and trying the other side of the field, back to the defense, etc.  Perhaps as a former offensive linemen I like trying to ram the ball down someone's throat a little too much to properly enjoy soccer, but I thought Dixie was well coached (good job Myers) and executed well.  I doubt I will start to care more about soccer after this, but I did enjoy the last two days of soccer.  So thank you DHS for letting me enjoy soccer, and congratulations to the team, to Coach Myers, and to my brother Konner (who played a lot and well for a freshman).

He let me know after the semi-final win that he would be the first one in the family with a state ring...I might let him actually get the ring before I kill him for that, but we'll see.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Life right now

 I'm not sure how I feel about the summer.  School is out, and I love not having school, but I work between 6-8 hours a day, so the free time isn't exactly there.  The free time comes after I get off of work, but I haven't done much with it yet.  The most I've done is start doing mock fantasy drafts, and read books.  I know, disgusting right?  Truthfully, I'm just rambling and I'm hoping to get back in the blogging spirit.  But right now, I got nothing to write.  Maybe I'll set a calendar for myself.  Something like sports on Monday, complaints on Tuesday, life on Wednesday... or something of that nature.  Who knows.  I'll have to brain storm ideas.  Maybe I'll just do that here.  Feel free to exit at anytime, this is more for me than you now anyways.

Potential writing ideas:
Sports(this could explode in the fall)
School/work (put people to sleep)
Finish mission posts
Fun adventures (first, find fun adventures)
Books I'm reading for fun(Zzzz...)
Movies(AVENGERS!!!....this could go under adventures, or turn books into media, and include movies)
Grateful posts/Ranting posts
More sports

Well that is a working list, but it's what I got now.  until then, peace out.