Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Potato Soup

Because I need a place to write this down that I can access quickly without searching through a bunch of scratch paper. Welcome back to the blog.

Boil a handful of chopped red potatoes in just enough water to cover them, then add a box of veggie broth.
Chop half an onion and mix in a bowl with a can of corn and a can of carrots (drained). Pour a little oil in and season--salt, pepper, thyme, garlic salt.
Add the stuff in the bowl to the pot when the potatoes are kind of tender.
Add thickening agent (a stick of butter melted and whisked with two heaping table spoons of corn starch)
Add some half and half and shredded cheese.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Call Me Sparky

Six years ago we took the first of a series of family vacations to Disneyland, a locale known as "the happiest place on earth." In my current occupation at See's Candies, though, I have customers who argue that See's actually owns that title. I respectfully disagree with both notions, because we all know that the happiest place on earth is actually this little corner of cyberspace that has British people doing voice overs for animals.


Here are the stories of the three trips to Disneyland that we have made as a family. I'm doing this in preparation for an upcoming trip that we have planned next month to the one and only Disneyland Resort in Southern California (Registered Trademarks and all that).

Trip number 1: Taken in October of 2007. This was a difficult time for our family. I had just graduated from BYU in April, and had imagined to myself that I would be working as a Seminary teacher full time, but I didn't get a job teaching Seminary. So following graduation, I worked for a little while as a server at Carrabba's, but by October I had given that up in hopes that I would find some solid full time work somewhere. At the time of the vacation, I had not found anything (I think in some ways I was a little relieved about this, because it worried me that I would have to try and get a week off from a brand new job ... I guess I worry about silly things).

We had two children, Joshua and Morgan. Josh was three and Morgan was one. The thought of having two small children in a place like Disneyland kind of terrified us a little, so we invested in some of those harness things (child leashes) and thought that we would use those a lot. We didn't. What we eventually did was purchase a second stroller, one of those cheap umbrella strollers, so that we had one for each child.

We flew to the Los Angeles Airport (the one known as LAX), and rode a shuttle (actually a bus, it looked nothing like a space ship) to our hotel. The not-really-a-shuttle-but-only-a-bus stopped at what felt like three hundred hotels before it reached ours, The Tropicana, located directly across from the entrance to the parks. We went on this trip with Jessica's family (as we did the others and we will on the one next month), and so our "party" (and what a party it was!) had four rooms, give or take. We got settled into our rooms and one of the first things I noticed was that the hotel lacked a swimming pool, which was kind of disappointing, because ever since I was a little kid the idea of a vacation was intrinsically linked with water and swimming. In fact, when I was young, my family could have saved a lot of travel time and just stayed in a local Provo hotel, and as long as it had a swimming pool, I would have considered it the greatest vacation ever (also, I probably wouldn't have thrown up quite as often if our road trips only went a few miles).

Where was I? Oh yes, the hotel. It did have cable TV, though, and that was the other element of a vacation that I considered essential as a kid, so one for two wasn't awful. Most of the channels were some variation of a Disney-themed channel (or so it felt). I came to really love the show, "The Replacements," about two orphan kids who found a cell phone that allowed them to call in any kind of favor they could ever want, including asking for parents (their parents were a secret agent mom and a dare devil dad). I thought this show had remarkable comedy for a kids' cartoon; my favorite moment was when the kids had created duplicates of their parents, and when their dad saw his duplicate, instead of wondering what on earth was going on, he just greeted it with a, "Hey there, handsome!"

That one still gets me.

We had an enjoyable time at the Disney parks. We rode the Buzz Lightyear ride 783 times or so, and also some other rides too. I was really timid to ride anything too thrilling, and so when everybody finally talked me into trying California Screaming I was very nervous, so much so that in the picture that gets taken at a certain point on the ride, I looked as if I was going to pass out. I think I had a fear of getting nauseous. That's still one of my biggest fears. What's it called? Upchuckaphobia? I'm not sure, really, but it scares the daylights out of me (but not the puke out of me, that would be torture).

Jessica and I went back to the hotel early every evening to put the kids to bed. They were absolutely exhausted each day, and it gave us a chance to hang out and talk or watch TV or whatever, but just to be together. Those were some of my favorite moments of that vacation, just being with Jessica and focusing on her while the kids slept peacefully.

Trip number 2: Taken in February or March of 2009. Joshua was four, almost five, Morgan was two and a half, and Jack was about six months old. Actually, Jack's age was the inspiration for writing this blog, since this next time we go to Disneyland we will have Lucy, who is six months old, and I was trying to remember if we had ever made the trip there with an infant before. And sure enough, we have.  Things were more stable in our family at this point. Following that first trip I was hired by Saturn of Orem to work as a sales consultant, a job that lasted all of nine months. But then in November 2008 I was hired by Seagull Book to be a manager in training, and that was where I was working when we made this trip to the theme park.

We flew again this time, but we opted to fly to an airport that was nearer to the park than LAX, so we went into Long Beach. I had hoped that an airport located in Long Beach would be near an actual beach, but was disappointed to see no ocean very near the airport (I had a false memory in my brain of ten years prior when I flew into the same airport for a school trip when I was a senior in high school; I thought for sure the airport was just a few steps away from beautiful sandy beaches with the tranquil sounds of waves crashing on the shore, but I was sorely mistaken). Also in contrast to that first trip, instead of riding a (ripoff-fake-not-really) shuttle, we rented cars. Minivans! With car seats for the kids and everything.

We picked up our cars, an ordeal that seemed to take much longer than it should have, and made our way to Harbor Blvd or Ave or Rd or St, or whatever it is, and found our hotel, not The Tropicana this time, but the Candy Cane Inn. Jessica's family had stayed at this hotel years before and had fond memories of it. It is located on the same side of the street as the entrance to the parks, but a short distance further down the road, so it was a little bit longer walk every day for us to and from the parks. This fact became the catalyst for a well-intentioned yet poor executed adventure one of the first evenings we were there.

There came a point that evening that Jessica and I were ready to head back to the hotel with Morgan and Jack (I think we had Jack anyway, though he may have still been with Jessica's mom). We didn't want to necessarily walk all the way out of the park and then back down the street to the hotel, and I thought I had seen on a map that if we went through Downtown Disney (Copyright, FBI Warnings, etc.) that we could make a much shorter trip back to the hotel. As is my habit, though, I made a huge mistake (do I have to cite Arrested Development if I say that?), and I misjudged where we should turn heading out of Downtown and we quickly found ourselves walking through residential neighborhoods in Anaheim. We kept turning toward what we thought was the direction of the hotel, and eventually, after walking for what felt like an hour and a half, we found The Candy Cane Inn. Morgan was an amazingly good sport for this walk, and so was Jessica. I owe them big for this to this day.

The Candy Cane Inn had delicious, but small, flaky, buttery croissants as a part of their continental breakfast. I ate lots of those croissants.

This trip was marked by Josh's fearlessness in riding any ride he was tall enough to ride, including the ride that became his favorite that trip, Tower of Terror. He had the ride memorized, including all of the video introductions and sound effects, and he repeated these to us multiple times. We also rode the Buzz Lightyear ride, probably 316 times. The kids and I spent many fun hours in the hotel pool.

When the day for our departure arrived, though, things got a little difficult. We had discovered (happily we thought) that the company we had arranged for our rental cars through, had a location just around the corner from our hotel. What a wonderful coincidence! Instead of having to go to the location in Downtown Disney, where our reservations indicated for us to go, we figured we could just go to this other, much more convenient, location and pick up our cars there. We even began to put the plan into place the night before we left, by visiting the nearer location to make sure we could pick our cars up there.

But it was not so easy. We had to spend hours waiting for the rental company to figure out how to arrange for us to get our cars at the other location, while in the meantime checking out of the hotel and trying to find a place to wait with three children for everything to work out. Eventually it did, we got our cars, went and had some lunch, and then went to the airport, where we waited in a very long slow moving security line as the guy who checked id's spent a painfully long time looking at every passengers license, carefully inspecting it with a light, front and back, and staring at the passenger to verify it was really them.

All in all, good times had by all. (If you are still reading at this point, my congratulations to you, you deserve a prize. But all I can offer is a few hundred more words. Sorry.)

Trip number 3: Taken in May of 2011. Josh had just turned seven, Morgan was four, and Jack was two. And Jessica was eight and a half months pregnant. We decided to try driving this time, instead of flying and having to either take a bus (not a shuttle, come on!) or rent a car. Jessica's extended family, including her uncle, aunt, and cousins, came along as well, and we considered it a family reunion. We drove half way and stayed for a night in a hotel in Primm, Nevada. I made this wise decision based on the fact that the last time I had made that drive (6 years before), I remembered seeing these hotels perched right on the Nevada/California border that advertised their very low room rates, and I thought it would be a great place to stay for a night.

I was wrong. These hotels were casinos first, and hotels second. They were smelly, hot, sticky, and when we checked in, at 6:00 in the evening, our room had not been cleaned yet. We decided to get something to eat, and so went to an in-house Denny's that had a long line. The kids were not thrilled with the wait, nor with the food. Thankfully, by the time we finished eating our room had been cleaned and we went up and went to bed. In the morning we packed quickly and left Primm with a vow never to stay there again (including the night I had booked for the drive home; I will give them this, they refunded the money no questions asked when I canceled the future reservation). Lesson learned: if you are staying in Nevada, stay in a hotel that does not double as a casino, at least if you are not in Las Vegas itself, and if possible, find one that is smoke free, like the Comfort Inn we'll be staying in this time in Henderson. Oh, also lesson learned: Primm, Nevada was not built with young Mormon families with small children in mind. (Duh, you say? I deserve it.)

If it seems like I'm doing a Clark Griswald impersonation on these vacations, I promise it is not intentional.

Maybe I can be forgiven for the Primm debacle on the merits of my hotel selection in Anaheim for this visit. We decided that, this time, we did not want to stay at the Tropicana or the Candy Cane Inn, so we began searching for a different place. For a while, we considered a Marriott, not a bad choice since Marriotts are typically very nice, but it was a little bit further away from the parks than the Candy Cane was, and that was one of the things we had hoped to improve on. We were working with a travel agent, the same one who had booked our other trips, and he was doing his best to meet all of our needs, but it was hard to do that. So I decided to see what I could find myself.

I did a Google street view search of Harbor and found the images of the hotels most conveniently located in relation to the entrance to the parks, and then researched those hotels. One of them, The Park Vue Inn, seemed pretty decent, in fact, it seemed great, maybe even ideal. So I talked everyone into giving this hotel a try, because they promised a good, free breakfast every day, rooms big enough to fit families with a number of children (we got a room with two queen beds and a bunk bed), and even a complimentary dinner each night. If it's any indication how we felt about the hotel, we are staying there again this next time. (Warm cookies in the lobby every day!)

The parks were a lot of fun, especially for Josh, who was old enough to really appreciate most of the rides, though he still wasn't tall enough for some of them. But he had a great time going on rides with his uncles and aunts. Morgan had a lot of fun too, but the poor little guy was sick most of the week we were there, so he took quite a few midday naps. Jack had a blast, and won over the hearts of nearly everybody he met, including the characters who roam the parks. Goofy and Chip (of Chip and Dale fame) took especial liking to Jack, giving him extra attention while making others wait a little longer to greet them. Jack has that affect on people.

One of the days we took advantage of having a mode of transportation available to us, and we drove down to Laguna Beach, and spent a few hours there, playing in the surf, and exploring tide pools. The boys found tons of shells, including one that, after getting back to the hotel, we discovered still had a little hermit crab living in it. I drove the crab back to the coast that evening.

We also gave Knott's Berry Farm a visit one day. It's less kid friendly than Disneyland.

On the drive home, we opted not to stay over in a city on the way, and just drove straight home, arriving sometime after midnight. This was Sunday night/Monday morning. On Tuesday, Jessica gave birth to our fourth little boy, Lewis.

So this trip will technically be Lewie's first, and also Lucy's first. We are looking forward to it, and are excited to see how the kids enjoy it.

Wish us luck.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Rule Breaker, in which I do it

Me: I'm breaking the rules here. Elder Holdaway: What rules? Me: The rules I made up along the way during our conversations. You know, about how at first I was just talking to an Elder Holdaway who was in a static temporal vacuum, not at a specific point in time, but then as I talked with you more and more I decided that we were at an exact ten year separation, and then I decided that was how it was, and so once I was ten years from you getting home, I couldn't talk to Elder Holdaway anymore. Those rules. Elder Holdaway: Um. Ok. Me: Well, I thought about this a lot, and it's all right if we talk even though we are more than ten years separated. I like this arrangement. Elder Holdaway: I'm not so sure I do. You're kind of weirding me out. Me: Well, I telepathically promised Spencer that I would talk to you again, so deal with it (and I really mean that in the friendliest way possible). Elder Holdaway: I think I have work to do. Me: Hang on, time pretty well stands still during our dialogue, so there. I needed to tell you that Spencer felt kind of bad about putting part of a Less than Jake song on one of the tapes he sent you. He told me this through a medium called facebook. Let that sink in. Elder Holdaway: What? Me: Sorry, I'm trying to be funny for anybody who reads this, since they will be reading it in my reality and not yours. But the joke wasn't funny. It was terrible. Elder Holdaway: Oh. Well, tell Spencer it's not a big deal. His tapes are the greatest things. I love listening to them, and my companions think they are great too. Me: Good. That's what I thought. Elder Holdaway: So I can expect more of this, huh? Me: You betcha! Elder Holdaway: K.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Welcome Home! in which we chat, but it's different this time

[Recently Released] Elder Holdaway: Hi.

Me: Hi, how was the plane ride?

[RR] Elder Holdaway: I got to help out a mom with her young kids. That was pretty cool.

Me: Oh yeah, I remember that. Hey, so you got that letter last night, right?

[RR] Elder Holdaway: The one from Jessica Smith and Sara Nash?

Me: That's the one.

[RR} Elder Holdaway: Yeah, why?

Me: :D

[RR] Elder Holdaway: What?

Me: Enjoy your hot chocolate and cookies tomorrow night. I know I will.

[RR] Elder Holdaway: Um, ok.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Farewell? In which we talk again, maybe for the last time

Me: I had an interesting experience today.
Elder Holdaway: What was it?
Me: I helped a customer whose last name was Calton, and I took a shot in the dark, and asked if her husband had served as mission president in Michigan. She looked a little worried when she said that they had served there, and asked if I was one of their missionaries. I explained that I arrived six months after they left, and then... that was it I guess. It was just cool, though. Any little connection to the mission is still very thrilling.
Elder Holdaway: Yeah.
Me: How was zone conference yesterday?
Elder Holdaway: Incredible! And so emotional.
Me: Yup.
Elder Holdaway: President Church changing the closing hymn, Elder Pace's talk! Everything!
Me: I just read the journal entry about it. Wow, it's amazing to remember all those things.
Elder Holdaway: Yeah. It's so weird to be knowing that I'm going home in a few days.
Me: There is a lot I feel like I should tell you, but I guess it's all stuff you figure out. Maybe we'll talk again before you go.
Elder Holdaway: That mustache?
Me: That's one of those things you'll just have to figure out.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Saturday, November 19, 2011

So long, in which I'll be shaving now

The trip, the game, the time spent with my brothers... it was all awesome.

But the stache is gone today.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Question, in which I have one

Just out of curiosity, for the combover sporting man, how long does it take to grow out said combover? Five months at least, right? And what on earth do you do with the shock of hair you grow to cover your head in the time that it's not long enough to go from ear to ear? There's not really such a thing as half a combover? Or two thirds a combover, right?

It's all a mystery.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

More Existentialism, in which we meet again

Brian: Put 'er there, Elder.
Elder Holdaway: Gah! Bwahahahahaha!
Brian: What?
Elder Holdaway: Hahahahahaha!
Brian: Are you ok? What's wrong?
Elder Holdaway: Hahahahahaha!
Brian: :{/
Elder Holdaway: Hoohoohoo!
Brian: :{/
Elder Holdaway: Ah-ha, ah-ha, ah-ha...
Brian: :{/
Elder Holdaway: Hee, hee, ah, oh, ah-ha...
Brian: You're in Okemos, now, right? Enjoy these last few weeks.
Elder Holdaway: Heh heh heh heh, Ah! Hahahahahahaha!
Brian: Another time, huh? Ok.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Unpredictability, in which this week is really exciting

If there is one thing the NFL is, it is totally unpredictable. The only two certainties this season are the best and the worst teams (Green Bay and Indy). Otherwise, anything can happen in any given game, like Arizona beating Philly, and Seattle beating Baltimore. Or a team with a quarterback who goes 2 of 8 winning. No really, 2 of 8!!

That quarterback, by the way, the one, the only, Tim Tebow. The same QB who has led his team (sort of) to two straight wins and has put the Broncos in contention for the AFC West Title. The same QB that I will be watching live this Thursday, as the Broncos take on the New York Jets (just lost to New England tonight).

This is going to be awesome.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Poser, in which I'm just pretending

Jack has somehow become convinced that because I have a mustache (or pushstache, as he says it), that I have been mysteriously and miraculously bestowed with the skills of the handy man. "You can fix our broken windows, because you have a pushstache," he tells me earnestly.

Poor Jack. What will he do when he figures out that I have unjustly taken upon me the persona of one who can do things?

Friday, November 11, 2011

Hey RJ! in which I make an obscure movie reference

Get out of my office! And take that ridiculous thing off!

7 Days, in which there is only one week left of this nonsense

My boss stopped by my store today. He almost fell over laughing when he saw me.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Fish Eye, in which I utilized Photobooth

Too Tired, in which I didn't do this last night

But the morning works too, I guess. The time change has me all messed up.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Intrigue, in which the game will be a good one

Congratulations to the Broncos and the Jets on their wins today. This means that each team might be playing for something (playoff berths?) in 11 days when they meet in Mile High Stadium.

Good news for the mustache brothers.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Contemplating, in which I'm considering looking like this all the time

Except that sometimes I have to use both my hands to do things... dang.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Styles, in Which There is no Debate

One of the questions regarding the growing of a mustache is, What kind of mustache will I grow?

I supposed I would just do the simple shave at the corners of my mouth, and let the stache do what it will. And I guess that's what I'm going with. The handlebar isn't my thing (not that any kind of mustache is my thing), and I wouldn't want to shave beyond around the corners of my mouth, because I want to avoid looking at all like an evil dictator.

Some people thin out their mustaches, shaving the area just below their noses, leaving a half a stache, but I don't think that's my style either.

So, for this brief experiment, I'm going with the most simple style.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Awe-struck, in which I meet Him

Hugh Nibley: It's still all foolishness. Complete foolishness, you see.

Me: Uh, hi.

Nibley: What? Who are you?

Me: Just, well, nobody. No! Wait, somebody. Oh, what clever response would impress you?

Nibley: Impress? Why would you want to impress me?

Me: Um... oh, hey, wait! Do you and Elder Maxwell and Truman Madsen do firesides, or whatever they would be called there, together?

Nibley: [Writing something on a notecard].

Me: I'll bet they're awesome.

Nibley: Let's get on with this, I'm certain there was something of terrible import for me to be sent to visit you.

Me: Well, it's just that, um, I'm nervous about people not taking me seriously. I'm growing this mustache, you see, and ...

Nibley: Take you seriously? My boy, I hope you don't take yourself serious. The gospel is serious business, more serious than I'll ever understand. You cannot take the gospel seriously and at the same time take yourself serious. The joke's on us, you see, I believe that now more than ever. Man is down there acting like he owns all that, giving offense, taking offense, taking it all into courtrooms to argue over property. Property! Ha! What does Man know of property? The meek, now there you go, we know what the meek are promised, and to be meek you must have a sense of the absurdity of all of that, and most especially of you.

Me: Ok.

Nibley: We are out of temporal time.

Me: Bye, Brother Nibley. It was nice to finally meet you.

Nibley: [Walking quickly away reading a manuscript.]

--But I'm pretty sure Nibley never wore a mustache.

Anxiousness, in which I consider the Reality before Me

Is anxiousness even a word? I probably should have said anxiety, but it's not so much anxiety as, simply, anxiousness.

Will people be able to take me seriously? I found myself asking this all day today, wondering if anyone noticed the slightly darker shade of stubble on my lip.

I'm confident nobody did.

But what about tomorrow? Or Thursday? It will be there, just THERE.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Stache, in which We are Growing Them

What is that? Josh's Mario mustache from his Halloween costume. But it reminds me, my mom is sending my brothers and me to an NFL game on November 17th. We are celebrating this in a number of ways, one of which will be by growing out our mustaches. From November 1st through the 17th our razors will ignore our upper lips, and we will no doubt be causing many people to feel uncomfortable around us.

But all in good fun!

So, to document the progress of the aforementioned mustache growing, I plan on blogging daily, including a picture showing all the hard work my stubble is putting in.

Here I am this evening. I shaved this morning, but NO MORE! At least not for the next 16 days.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Devastation in 140 Characters or Less, in which I Tweeted During that Game

Game time is here. My belly is full (too full), the kids are in bed, and I'm ready. Hopefully the Cougs are too.

I had kept up some irrational hopes that I would somehow end up going to the game tonight. Not so.

@LaurieAMeacham So you may as well root for the true team, the one your daughter aligns with.

Are you serious????

What was the penalty there?

No wonder I've been feeling nauseous. That was terrible, even turrrrible as Charles Barkley would say.

@tonyparks1320 He should hear about that awful play. Fall on the ball!

Let's see some high octane offense here. PLEASE.

Not a bad run. #JJ

Was that Hoffman? Really? Hooray!

Um, ...

Who did Bronco want to appease by wearing the polo shirt over the top of the gray t-shirt?

Nice little Chad Lewis leap from Kariya. 1st down.

Hmph!! #fumble #2

Destroy Wynn.

Cougar front 7 playing with emotion.

Nice hit DB's.

What did Kyle expect?


@LaurieAMeacham Hey!

Grr. I would really REALLY like to see a deeper pass executed.



That's more like it. #Heaps #Hoffman

That's it, Jake, run the show. #Heaps #Jacobson

Oh My!!! #Heaps #Hoffman Under pressure, that was amazing!

Late hit. Emotion...


C'mon D.

No first down here. Make 'em go 3 and out.

Still feeling sick; it won't go away until I see blue in the endzone.

Breakout game thus far for our friend #Hoffman.

This was the formula for success late last year. I like it.

Ooh, nasty.

Big J! #Justin #Sorenson

Weird, beautiful field goal and a shank kick off.

Good tackle #Ogletree

Turnover! Turn about, and all that.

Our resident Mad Man recovered it.


This is my 1,000th tweet. And much like this drive coming off a turnover, #disappointment

Off topic, which arrogant, pretentious, despicable school do you more want to lose? Miami or Ohio State?

Nice hit, but Christopher hung onto the ball.

Utah's highly touted running back just, um, well, bwahaha!

Oh crap! Bailed out.

@DavidDJJames Yes, DJ, it was a bail out.

Stuffed. That's the BYU D we love.

Turn over on downs. Yeesh, let's see the offense do something here. That extended drive of Utah's should have given them sufficient rest.

Hey there's Hugh Nibley's favorite temple, on ESPN and everything.

Over the middle, to a tight end. #Holt

Cheap hit after the whistle. Whatever.


That is more like it. I'll say it again. That's more like it!

@LaurieAMeacham ?

The Utes have nightmares of a big tight end wearing #88 running over the middle.

@Lockedonsports You're exactly right. Two corrupt programs battling it out, there's nothing like it.

That was a big run, but he paid for it. Up ended.

Eason just wasn't expecting it to be right there. RIGHT THERE! So close.

@benbags Ha! Zing.

Van Noy!!

Jimmer sighting.

@LaurieAMeacham Ah, I see. Though I didn't notice it myself, I've been looking straight at the computer screen in between every play.

Go #JJ, hang on to that ball.

Fix yer jersey young man.

Too high. Hm, offense hasn't been able to capitalize on big defensive plays. Crap.

My goodness. BYU line backers and DB's flying all over the place.


30 seconds and 2 time outs. Going for it?

Best garbage time punt ever.

Coverage on those tight ends needs to be sticky.

Put those flags away, officials. This is getting ridiculous.

Keep running the ball, Utes. It's really effective ... for the BYU D.

Holding, anyone? Anyone?

No bail out PI call? How come?

I am shocked, absolutely shocked (sincerely) that the officials did not call PI on Sorenson there. #officiatingisajoke


I am hopeful. Delusional, but hopeful

Bright spot? #Hoffman

Wow, this is getting way out of hand. Stop the run!

BYU's inspired defense took too many hits with penalty calls, they are playing tentative now.

Channel the 1980 Holiday Bowl mentality. Channel it dangit!

And ... why?

Why? WHY? WHYYYYY?????

Well, hm.

This has been completely unexpected.

@Lockedonsports Yes, I do demand answers.

@ScottyGKFAN Today is much worse than 2008. MUCH WORSE.

@AndrewAdamsKSL Only 6 turnovers? Is that really all?

Worst train wreck in the history of BYU football.

@laurieameacham yup. Awful.

I'm on my way to take Lewis to see Jessica. Did I change out of my byu shirt? Yes. Of course I did.

This is embarrassing.

@laurieameacham oy.

Will do, Laurie. I'll say it again, this was totally unexpected.

This just in, ticket prices for remaining byu games drop to record lows on stubhub.

Not about to be outdone by the BYU football team, my dog dropped a very large, very smelly pile of crap on our stairs overnight.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Toe Stubbing, in which it made me think of

Children have a very egocentric worldview. (A word of caution, I will not be looking up any term that I use to see if I am using it correctly. I'm feeling very lazy right now. I'm dealing with it, and you ought to as well.) Children think that anything that happens, anything that they are aware of happening anyway, happens as a direct result of something that they have done.

For example, it's raining outside, therefore they must have done something to make it rain, like spit too much or something.

I am a child, or am very childish. Probably that last one.

I stubbed my toe a few minutes ago, and my first thought was that I was being punished for something I had done wrong.

I did not (at least not immediately) consider that I might just be clumsy. Or that my big feet are prone to bumping into walls sometimes.

Not that my feet are really big. In fact, I would say that my feet are very average in size.

How do I know this?

I know people (men) who have feet that are bigger than mine, and other men who have feet that are smaller than mine.

So since my feet aren't big (like those I know with bigger feet) or small (like those I know with smaller feet), they must be average.

That's as far as my thinking went on this subject.

But earlier in a series of tweets I said something that may or may not be related:

Sometimes humor doesn't translate. Like when you give humor a book written in French and tell it that you would like to read the book in English. Thanks for nothing, humor.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

262 Things, in which I will list 262 things

1. I started this blog nearly four years ago
2. I had 2 children then
3. I have 4 children now
4. Joshua
5. Morgan
6. Jack
7. Lewis
8. I'm holding a sleeping Lewis with my left hand
9. I'm typing with only my right hand
10. This December will mark the tenth anniversary of the day Jessica and I met
11. Jack likes to laugh
12. A lot
13. Hysterically
14. Especially when he's tired
15. I thought the phrase "peachy keen" was "peachy king"
16. Until Jessica corrected me
17. Last month
18. I read a sports book for the first time in December 2009
19. The Book of Basketball by Bill Simmons
20. I just finished another sports book
21. Those Guys Have All the Fun
22. It's about the history of ESPN
23. Yup, I'm a geek
24. But if you know me, then you already knew that
25. I really like the cheddar cheese bagels from the Smith's (grocery store) bakery
26. Especially if they are still warm
27. When I was 15 I permed my hair
28. I can't remember why
29. But I was not the only guy in my school to get a perm
30. A kid much bigger, tougher, and cooler than me did too
31. After I did
32. But probably not because I did
33. The book I'm reading right now has a 348 page chapter
34. Our house has been infested with earwigs
35. Our boys are fascinated with earwigs
36. Those two things might be related
37. No, I don't personally know any of the Vineyard Holdaways
38. Or the orthodontist
39. Every pair of Joshua's pants gets a hole in the left knee
40. But never the right knee
41. My cell phone is a flip phone
43. I have had it for nearly two years
44. It has survived a lot
45. Especially a lot of falls
46. From my lap when I get out of my car
47. My car?
48. 1995 Chevy Lumina
49. White (did they make any other colors?)
50. It's missing large chunks of paint
51. Just like most of its siblings on the road
52. Its left front fender is bent out of shape
53. Because its tire blew up on the freeway one day
54. That was the only time in my life I had a police escort
55. I was in a band called Kermit
56. And one called The Bilge
57. And one called Rash
58. And one called Replace My Divot
59. And one called The Rasta Smurfs
60. And one called Cute Band Alert
61. And one called The Bob and Tom Show
62. And one called Eleven Seas
63. And others whose names I can't remember
64. Or they never had names
65. Oh! and a band that never practiced called Funny Little Finger Thing
66. I have a thing with loose teeth
67. I have heard medical personnel talk about putting patients on something called Rheummer
68. It turns out they were just saying "room air"
69. As in the patient is not on oxygen anymore
70. A number of my friends have law degrees
71. It's difficult knowing whether or not something I'm writing is really keeping with the spirit of my online persona
72. I have an online persona
73. I once introduced myself to someone as my online persona
74. Ten years ago I was on the last stretch of my mission
75. I served in Michigan
76. Specifically in Lansing
77. Jackson
78. Another part of Jackson
79. Grand Haven
80. North Muskegon
81. Harrison
82. The Mission Office in East Lansing
83. Okemos
84. And I served with Elder Hall (MTC)
85. Elder Staker
86. Elder Sanders
87. Elder Nelson
88. Elder Gregersen
89. Elder Merrit
90. Elder Henrie
91. Elder Ashby
92. Elder Peterson
93. Elder Olson
94. Elder Hatch
95. Elder Leavitt
96. Elder Anderson
97. Elder Boyle
98. Elder Munoa
99. Elder Eales
100. Elder Fagg
101. Yup, 17 companions
102. Elder Staker was my longest companion
103. We served together for 14 weeks
104. He is one of my friends who has a law degree
105. Our answering machine in our Lansing apartment as the source of great entertainment
106. I'm still typing this with only my right hand
107. Even though I took a break for a few hours
108. People are setting off lots of fireworks in our neighborhood
109. I used to be able to see the Timpanogos Temple from my front porch
110. I can't see it anymore
111. I think it's because trees have grown in the way
112. I start lots of things that I don't finish
113. There is a good chance I won't finish this list
114. Our yard is really big
115. A third of an acre
116. It seemed like a good idea at the time
117. Our sprinkler system is broken
118. Eye sore=my backyard
119. Jessica and I like to watch 30 Rock
120. And Burn Notice
121. And White Collar
122. I almost went to Toronto once
123. On accident
124. I wasn't the one driving
125. As a missionary, I came to love a breakfast of yogurt and bagels
126. That's what we ate at the mission home
127. I studied Hebrew in college
128. I should study Hebrew more often now
129. What is more often than never?
130. Lewis takes a bottle better than any of our other kids
131. I would look weird with a mustache
132. Few people wouldn't look weird with a mustache
133. Replacing a garbage disposal can make it seem like your dishwasher is broken
134. Unless you think to knock out the drain cover thing
135. The number 134 will always make me think of "I Believe in Christ"
136. Elder Staker used to read sections of Mormon Doctrine to me over the intercom of our phone
137. From one room in the apartment to another
138. Not long ago, cassette tapes were widely used for things
139. I looked like a little boy when Joshua was born
140. Josh was born in March 2004
141. So I was 23 when Josh was born
142. I was a little boy when Josh was born
143. My best estimate is that I taught somewhere around 1,000 missionaries in 2 1/2 years at the MTC
144. The audacity
145. In a lot of ways, I feel bad for Joshua
146. We just don't know what we are doing with him
147. At least with the other kids we have a small idea
148. Maybe just a slice of an idea
149. I think magazine subscriptions are funny
150. Not the subscriptions themselves, but the lengths to which magazines will go to get you to subscribe
151. I subscribed to Sports Illustrated to get a jacket
152. The subscription cost 20 dollars for a year, and that included the jacket
153. They want me to renew, but I'm not going to
154. I'm not sure which of us got ripped off
155. I am a big fan of morning sunlight
156. I am also a big fan of morning mist
157. And morning snowfall
158. I am now typing this using two hands
159. I learned how to type in high school
160. I am really glad I learned how to type in high school
161. I have three days off this week
162. Seagull is an extremely cool company, because we close our stores on a lot of holidays
163. Like Pioneer Day, we were closed on Monday in honor of Pioneer Day
164. I nearly accepted a job with US Bank
165. But instead, I accepted a job with Seagull Book
166. Sometimes I can be a smart cookie
167. I wonder when Tina Fey's character from 30 Rock is going to marry a Mr. Swindle
168. And fulfill her true calling as a painter of religious art
169. Tonight at Walmart it was curtains for me
170. And bread, milk, and dog food
171. And one of those lamps that you can clip onto a bed
172. Because Joshua likes to read in bed
173. He especially likes to read Garfield
174. I really liked reading Garfield as a kid
175. I had collected all of the Garfield books up to the current one in print
176. 20 years later, Jim Davis is still writing a daily strip
177. Wow, that's a lot of comic strips
178. I started this post six days ago
179. My favorite comic strip now is Dilbert
180. I understand there are some pretty good online comics
181. I can't get myself to be very interested in online comics
182. It's not that I can relate to Dilbert at all
183. I am not an engineer
184. I don't work in an office
185. My boss is fantastic
186. My employer (as in, Seagull Book) is just a great company
187. I rarely see more than one co-worker at a time
188. I attend meetings once, maybe twice a year
189. Though the meetings are 3 days long
190. But comparitively, I have no room for complaint
191. So, you see, my professional life is not at all like Dilbert's
192. My professional life is a little more like Jim's Journal
193. Jim worked at a copy store
194. At our house, we don't like thinking about what to eat
195. This makes meal time kind of hard
196. But we eventually find something
197. I don't like fruity candy very much
198. I like fruit, but I don't like sticky fingers
199. So I like to be able to wash my hands immediately after eating fruit
200. I think this supplement I'm taking expired in June of 2008
201. I bought it about a month ago
202. How is it that a supplement can expire?
203. I am the only person in my [parents'] family who has not been to Europe
204. The furthest away from Utah I have ever traveled is somewhere in Michigan
205. I say somewhere in Michigan, because I've been all over the lower penninsula
206. I don't know which of those locations is technically furthest away from Utah
207. I have not been back to Michigan since my mission
208. They (whoever they are) say you can't go back
209. I don't doubt that is true in my case
210. I could visit there, but it would be very different than when I was a missionary
211. Sunlight makes me happy
212. In 1999 I took a road trip
213. With Aaron and Spencer
214. We took Aaron's car
215. It was a brown Pontiac, or Oldsmobile
216. Or something like that, with a long bench seat in front
217. That's why we didn't take my car
218. A 1989 Mazda 323
219. We needed the bench seat in the front
220. Because all three of us sat in the front seat
221. In August
222. Driving to Phoenix
223. Without air conditioning
224. There was no working radio
225. Well, installed into the dashboard anyway
226. We had a working boom box
227. We played CDs in this boom box
228. And held it on our laps
229. There was a meteor shower on the way down
230. Oh, we all had to sit in front because our guitars and drums took up the trunk and back seat
231. Spencer had a blue mohawk
232. Aaron had pink hair
233. We made my sister really nervous when we showed up unannounced
234. This morning I stood in a breakfast buffet line across from Sheri Dew
235. She doesn't care for bacon
236. If you are still reading this, I apologize
237. My cell phone is no longer a flip phone
238. They call it smart
239. Baby Lewie is not very sleepy right now
240. I wish he was sleepy
241. We watched the Phineas and Ferb movie as a family tonight
242. It had some good moments
243. It was presented in "spectacular 2D"
244. That was one of its good moments
245. My left arm is falling asleep at the elbow
246. Another good moment was when Perry the Platypus peed on Dr. Doofenshmirtz's couch
247. And when Ferb actually said the words, "Well, he did pee on his couch."
248. I really like the smell of baking bread
249. And the taste of fresh baked bread
250. We don't have any flour to make bread right now
251. We are also out of potatoes, baby carrots, and orange juice
252. I need to go grocery shopping
253. That would also require making a shopping list
254. Let's see, beans, cheese, tomato sauce...
255. And diced potatoes (preferrably frozen)
256. Morgan didn't like the shredded potatoes I served him for breakfast this morning
257. I recently began writing with pencil
258. A classic yellow number 2 pencil
259. There is something very satisfying about that
260. I like eating refridgerated Twix bars
261. Especially the caramel ones
262. Though Peanut Butter Twix are my favorite candy bar

Jack's suggestion, in which he says this after eating the bread in Sacrament Meeting

I need butter.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Manly Man, in which I'm Not One

There is standing water in the bottom of our dishwasher.

Now, if you're like me, you need someone to point this fact out to you, and you also need that same someone to inform you that it is probably not ok to go ahead and run another load of dishes when the dishwasher is in such a state.

It became necessary for me to do what any befuddled and over matched home owner would do in a situation like this.

Google. (Actually, I didn't google it, Jessica did.)

From the internets I learned that sometimes standing water in the bottom of a dishwasher can be solved by thoroughly soaking up the water, removing a number of parts, and using a combination of baking soda (SODA! not powder, I now have a large can of baking powder that will be thrown away in a couple years) and vinegar. Homemade, dishwasher safe, Drano, or something.

The same web page informed me that if this solution doesn't do the job after multiple treatments, my dishwasher has bigger problems. Mechanical problems. Problems that require someone with the title "Technician" to come and solve.

Or maybe perhaps it just means it's time for a new dishwasher... (wishful thinking)

Over Memorial Day weekend, Jessica's dad busied himself with remodeling her parents' home and adding a wall in their basement to create another bedroom. My sons were understandably fascinated, even enthralled with the project. Well, I guess not all of my sons; Lewis is mostly enthralled with eating and pooping right now. But the others, especially Morgan, were entertained for hours watching and, ahem! helping their grandpa with this project.

At one point, Morgan said to Grandpa, "You are really good at building things. My dad isn't good at building things." Then, after thinking it over, he said, "He's good at laundry and dishes."

Which, I guess, considering the state of our one kitchen appliance, isn't such a bad thing.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Sensitivities, in Which Morgan Feels Sad

"Come watch this, Dad. Mario dies."

So I walk over to the computer to see what Josh is talking about. It's one of his online games that he plays, based on Super Mario Brothers. This game ends with a (very pixelated) video of Luigi walking up to a grave, and on the headstone is a picture of Mario with the caption: Mario, Brother, Friend, HERO. Luigi has tears in his eyes, and he places a picture of he and Mario on the grave. That one song from Titanic plays in the background.

I watched with him, and Morgan and Jack were there too. Jack laughed as loud as he could, as he is wont to do at something he doesn't understand. But Morgan watched quietly and then turned himself into the crook where the desk meets the wall, and covered his face with his hands. I pulled him to me and he had huge crocodile tears streaming down his cheeks. I just held him and let him cry.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Word Problem, in which Josh Does his Homework

"Max had 17 pennies. He used 5 pennies to buy a toy. How many pennies does Max have left?"

Josh's response: "5 pennies? What kind of toy could he get for 5 cents?"

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Bartering, in which we talk again

Me: Hey, um, well, that new drumset I had? Well, I sold it.

Elder Holdaway: I knew it. I knew it was too good to be true. You've changed too much.

Me: I had to. It was collecting dust, well, I mean that the blanket covering it was collecting dust. I couldn't ever play it without it being commandeered by one of the kids.

Elder Holdaway: Whatever.

Me: It's all good, though. I moved an excersie machine in its place, so now I can stay healthy... and things. These things are important when you're 30.

Elder Holdaway: You are an old man.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Not for this One, in which I Blogged Elsewhere

If you care at all about BYU Basketball, and the Jimmerfest that is happening right now, then you can read my very wordy take on it over here.

If you don't care about BYU Basketball, well, that's why I didn't blog about it here.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Mood, in which I'm in One

They call me mellow yellow.


It's more citrus-y than Mt. Dew.

Wendover commercials drive me crazy. I've never been there, and heaven willing, will never have to go there. I don't need a rev-rev-rev-rev-revolution.

As has been noted elsewhere, we are expecting a fourth mini-Holdinator. Josh has suggested his name of choice: Wood Breaker. When I mentioned the one Jess and I have been discussing, he expressed displeasure.

I guess we could use this list.

(My vote would be for Joe (beard))

But, you say, I thought that you were in retirement.

I think I used the conditional term semi-

And if I didn't, I intended to. So there. Most of these thoughts are less than 140 characters, by the way.

Morgan has a shiner. I don't have a picture of it, but it was the result of a dressing accident (why wouldn't it be?). It's hard to stay balanced when your pants are only half-on and you're trying to twist/jump/run because that's what you do. And if there's a metal garbage can nearby, well, watch out.

I don't remember what their malady was here, but they sure are cute.

It's probably not good form to make two observations about commercials in one post, but any commercial that includes slowly rotating people, especially with shiny faces and mullets, ought to not be on TV.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Unintentional Comedian, in which, well, You'll See

Setting: Our Kitchen. Jack and Morgan are sitting at the table playing, I'm at the sink, and Josh is following me every step as he is wont to do when he is eager for me to play a video game with him.

Josh: Dad, are you done cleaning the kitchen yet?
Me: Not yet buddy.
Josh: How much do you have left? Just wiping off the table?
Me: And all these dishes.
Josh (observing the sink full of dishes): It would go faster with two people.
Me: Yeah, it would.
Josh: Why don't you ask Morgan to help you?
Me: Ha!
Josh: What? You should ask Morgan.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Naivete, in which I read some Journal Entries from 15 year old me

And I quote, "I found out Cheryl and Jeanette have something against guys. We've got just one track minds. That may be true, but my track isn't that bad. Is music really that bad a thing to always be thinking about no matter what? I don't think so."

Um, no wonder girls felt safe around me as a teenager.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Return for a Day, in which I just had to Blog about it

Yesterday at work (at Seagull Book, you know, a Mormon book store), my coworker was ringing up an elderly (read: at least 80 years old) woman. The woman was writing a check and suddenly said, "Well, I just f--ked that up." I looked at my coworker, but didn't catch her eye, then I looked at other customers but no one would make eye contact with me.

I guess we all knew that if we caught each others eye, we just might laugh.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

One Short of 250, in which I sort of Retire the Blog

The majority of my not-so-frequent posts on this blog of late have been less than 140 characters. Do you realize what this means?

I've been twitterized. Anything I have to say can probably be said in a tweet.

So let it be written.

So let it be done.

Monday, October 4, 2010

My place, in which Josh once again Puts Me

"Daddy, stop trying to pretend to be funny."

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Getting Really Excited, in which we Blog about BYU Football

Or mostly this. As a freshman at BYU, the biggest news story of the year was this. You need to read the whole thing.

I looked for reaction to this story, and came across this.

And this.

Here's one of my favorites.


But the best reaction by far came in my Gospel and Christian History class, in which the late Professor Paul Peterson apologized one day to the class by saying, "I'm sorry. I'm a bit discombobulated today, you see, I was hit by a flying tortilla on the way to class." When a student asked him if it hurt, he answered, "Well, it would have hurt an ordinary man."

Bring on football season.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Another Conversation, in Which Josh said:

"Dad, they lie what they say about Reeses Puffs. They say that when you eat them, amazing things happen. I ate them once, and nothing cool happened."

Sunday, June 27, 2010

BRT, in which we Have This Conversation:

Me: I broke a drum stick.
Elder Holdaway: Huh?
Me: I broke a drum stick. Playing the drums. The boys asked me to play the Power Rangers theme song, so I did, and I broke a drum stick.
Elder Holdaway: But I thought you hadn't played drums in two years.
Me: I hadn't, but then on a whim I set up my drums and, well, there you go. By the way, I had totally forgotten how it feels to break a stick. It's really satisfying.
Elder Holdaway: Everyone always said I played too loud, or too hard.
Me: Or too fast?
Elder Holdaway: Yeah! Or too fast.
Me: I still do.
Elder Holdaway: Good. Good for you.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Dad, in which We Honor Him

Soon enough, Elder Holdaway will make another appearance, and we'll chat.

But today, with Father's Day being tomorrow, this:

"They broke my watch."

"Who wants an orange whip? Orange whip? Orange whip? Three orange whips!"

"Uh, Bob, uh, I think we've got a little problem."

"Are you the police?" "No, ma'am, we're musicians."

"You got my cheeze whiz, boy?"

"Hi, uh, what car number are we?" "Five five" "Car fifty-five, um, we're in a truck."

"This is glue. Strong stuff."

"I've always loved you."

"There's a lot of space in this mall."

"Four fried chickens, and a Coke."

"It's a hundred and six miles to Chicago. We've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses." "Hit it."

"Jake, Jake, I gotta pull over."

Friday, May 28, 2010

Ten Years Old, in which I Finally Found It

I vividly remember the BYU Bookstore, and this cassette tape, it was white, and had only one song. At ten years old, I was absolutely obsessed with BYU Football (not much has changed in twenty years), and this was one of the greatest things I had ever found.

But I lost the tape. I haven't heard the song in fifteen years, at least. But then last night, after numerous attempts to do so, I finally found it.

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and indeed girls, I give you Ty Power!!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

It's Hot, in which Elder Holdaway and I talk about it

Elder Holdaway: What are you wearing?
Me: I'm in my own house.
Elder Holdaway: Yeah, but what if someone comes over?
Me: I'd change before I answer the door.
Elder Holdaway: Oh, good. That's better than nothing.
Me: (smiling) Yeah it is. You're thinking about Brother G and Brother H in Lansing South?
Elder Holdaway: Yes! They are endowed members of the church! And they just hang out with their families with no shirts on! That's so weird.
Me: Meh. You're 19 years old and weigh 145 pounds. In ten years you'll be 55 pounds heavier, and your threshold for tolerating heat will have dropped a lot. You'll have a little bit more empathy for Brothers G and H.
Elder Holdaway: Uh. Whatever.
Me: Oh, that reminds me, have you lost your keys in ...
Elder Holdaway: The naked man's couch?! Yes! Now that guy was, uh ...
Me: Totally uncalled for. What about Josh? Have you met him yet?
Elder Holdaway: Josh?
Me: No, huh? I'll just say this, don't take it personally when he's offended that you won't let him take you to Hell.
Elder Holdaway: (Looking perplexed)
Me: Think about it. Enjoy everything about Jackson; you'll miss it when you leave.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Slighted, in Which A Commercial is Created

You know those NBA commercials, the ones where they use sound bites from players' interviews to create a song? You know how there are never any Jazz players featured in those commercials, save for brief visual clips?

We (Jess and I) came up with an idea for the Jazz to duplicate those commercials on their own.

The sound bites could all come from last night's game, and wouldn't feature interviews with current active players, but instead would feature (mostly) Matt Harpring's color commentary.

Picture an assortment of clips of amazing plays put to a hip hop beat with these "lyrics":

Harpring: That was a good foul. A good foul. Not silly. They have to avoid the silly fouls...
Avoid the silly... the silly... avoid the silly fouls.
Ron Boone: Just look for the orange shoes.
Harpring: They're yellow.
Boone: Are they yellow?
Harpring: They're yellow.
Boone: Look for the orange... the orange shoes.
Harpring: Avoid the silly... they're yellow... yellow.
Pace Mannion: He has to do something offensively... He has to... He has to... offensively... He has to do something offensively.
Harpring: Now that one was a silly foul... silly... silly... He fell right on him bum... Now that was a silly foul... on his bum... avoid the silly fouls.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Jazz Links, in which I link to one thing and mention two others

First of all, according to, the greatest play of the 2009-2010 season ...

Was this.

Second of all, both Bill Simmons and John Hollinger have the Jazz beating, not only the Nuggets in the first round, but the Lakers in the second round, and then losing to the Suns in the Western Conference finals.

(Both also base their predictions on the Jazz getting Andrei back--dang it!)

Monday, March 22, 2010

Friday, March 19, 2010

I'm Serious! in which Joshua is not pleased when I laugh at things he says

I hate having fights with Josh. It's just not a pleasant thing. If there is one positive that comes of it, though, it is the opportunity afterward to have an open and honest discussion about what happened.

Which inspired this exchange:

Josh: When I lose my temper, I get grounded from things, like the Wii and TV.
Me: Mm-hm.
Josh: But when you lose your temper, you don't get grounded, and that's not fair.
Me: What do you think I should be grounded from?
Josh: I don't know, like maybe doing laundry.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Dear Annie, in which I write a letter to our dog

Whatever instinct it is that drives you to roll in your own poop, I urge you to resist it.

Thank you,

Your Faithful (though grossed out) owner

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Pricing, in which we undercover our home's value

Or at least some parts of the home.

It appears that our front door costs 100 cents. This is according to a little piece of paper that was taped to it, presumably by a budding five-year-old appraiser.

If we ever sell the house, I hope the back door is worth a little more.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Existentialism II in which Elder Holdaway Agrees to another Conversation

Brian: Dude! You've got to see this!
Elder Holdaway: What is it?
Brian: It's from a kids' show; this is the kind of stuff my kids watch on TV.
Elder Holdaway: Ooh! Is it Cartoon Planet?
Brian: Nope. Better.
Elder Holdaway: Better than Cartoon Planet? How is that possible? What? Do you like Johnny Bravo more now? Or the Power Puff Girls?
Brian: Just watch.
Elder Holdaway: Oh ... my ... That was AWESOME!!!
Brian: I thought you'd like it.
Elder Holdaway: Maybe you're not so weird after all.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Old Man, in which Holdinator blogs about ...

Mix tapes.

Do you remember mix tapes? Like when you would spent an entire afternoon making a mix tape for your friend of your favorite songs? Or when you would make a mix tape for driving, and you would listen to it every time you drove your car for the next six months?

This was a very involved process. You had to sort through your CD collection, and pick out which CD's you wanted to use, then you would have to put them in your stereo individually, go to the song you want to record, and press play on the CD and record on the tape deck at the same time. Getting the right amount of time in between songs was crucial.

You would develop this very intimate connection to the mix tape, because you listened to every song all the way through as you were recording it. And that was awesome. You were experiencing, for the first time, the feel and the personality of that tape. Whether for you or someone else, that tape meant a lot.

I think the last mix tape I made was one for Jess, when we were dating, in 2002.

Now we make playlists on iTunes. Very cool technology, but you don't know how it's going to sound until it's playing on your iPod and then you can skip through songs, or have them play randomly. And playlists can be hours long with nearly unlimited songs.

With mix tapes, you had 60, maybe 90, minutes of music, and you listened to every song all the way through, because if you tried to fast forward through a song, you might miss some of the next song, which was one that you really liked, and you'd have to rewind then.

And you loved every song on those tapes. And life was good.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Representation, in which we do our taxes

Tonight is my annual spend-more-time-on-the-computer-than-any-other-time-during-the-year night.

Turbo Tax is a wonderful product.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Go over there, in which we link to a really good blog

If you consider yourself to be among the sometimes-tortured Utah Jazz fan base, then do yourself a favor and read this.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sports Nerd, in which Holdinator writes this post:

The Jazz won. Hooray! They didn't give up a gimme to the worst team in the NBA. Maybe they really have turned a corner. (I hope I hope I hope I hope)

BYU's basketball team is 20-1. Jimmer Fredette is a machine!

The Colt's have a chance to go to the super bowl, and all they have to do is beat the Jets. They can do it. Only 4 hours until the game starts.

Aaaaaand, I'm a dork.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Joshyism, in which I was corrected thusly:

"Superman doesn't use his super speed to eat fast, he uses his super speed to defeat villains."

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Remember back then, when I said that I wanted to be a life coach?

Me neither.

Actually I do. But that's because I write this dang thing.

Anyway, I just came from a website of a life coach and read up on the fees she charges....

$500.00 a (!!!!) month!

For one client.

"Ok, suck that air in, now blow it out. That's right, that's how you live."

Dude. I really do need to be a life coach.That, or the Jazz should have signed me to be their thirteenth player. Seriously, I would be happy to go to all the games, wear a suit, and sit behind the players' bench.

Oh, and get paid whatever the lowest salary is for an NBA player who never plays.

(i.e. much more than I get paid now)

Friday, December 25, 2009

Existentialism, in which Holdiantor meets himself

Brian (2009 me): Have you ever noticed how Isiah Thomas's first name is spelled?
Elder Holdaway (1999 me): Huh?
Brian: Have you ever noticed the spelling of Isiah Thomas's first name? It shouldn't really be pronounced eye-zae-yah, it's more eye-zeeyah.
Elder Holdaway: Who are you?
Brian: I'm future you.
Elder Holdaway: No way. You're wearing a BYU tee-shirt.
Brian: Yep. I like to support my Alma Mater.
Elder Holdaway: Your what?
Brian: I graduated from BYU a couple years ago.
Elder Holdaway: But BYU's in Provo. You're supposed to be living in Orange County.
Brian: About that, um, nope. I have never lived in Orange County.
Elder Holdaway: Okay, then Venice, Santa Monica, or anywhere in Southern California?
Brian: (shrugs)
Elder Holdaway: What happened? Where are Spencer and Aaron?
Brian: Spencer is applying for PhD programs and Aaron lives out east and works for the government. I think he's considering law school.
Elder Holdaway: (head explodes)
Brian: Here, no, it's okay. You never answered my question about Isiah Thomas. It's one of those names that you'd just assume is spelled like the common English spelling of the Biblical Isaiah, but it's not. Weird, huh? Of course the English spelling is so far from the actual sound of the Hebrew name, I guess it doesn't matter how you spell it. It's nothing like the name Joshua, even though the two mean basically the same thing, and it would be kind of funny to name one son Joshua and another Isaiah, secretly knowing that you've named them the same thing.
Elder Holdaway: You're weird. Since when have you cared about Isiah Thomas?
Brian: Since I got The Book of Basketball for Christmas.
Elder Holdaway: The what?
Brian: It's a book by an writer all about the NBA.
Elder Holdaway: Who gave you that?
Brian: My brother-in-law.
Elder Holdaway: Chris?
Brian: No, his name's Jared. He's Jessica's younger brother.
Elder Holdaway: Jessica?
Brian: My beautiful wife.
Elder Holdaway: You're married?
Brian: And daddy to three little boys.
Elder Holdaway: Wow, your music career must have really taken off.
Brian: Um, I haven't played the drums in two years.
Elder Holdaway: (if head hadn't exploded earlier, well, you know)
Brian: (grins)
Elder Holdaway: So what else did you get for Christmas?
Brian: Stuff to decorate the sports room with. BYU stuff, Utah Jazz stuff, and a Colts' helmet decal. They were my fantasy defense for most the year, and treated me pretty well.
Elder Holdaway: I understood maybe half of that. You are 29 right, not 12?
Brian: Don't worry about it. You have ten years to figure it all out.
Elder Holdaway: I'm not sure how I feel about that. I'm not sure how I feel about you.
Brian: You'll get used to me. You'll figure out how fun it is to be a little geeky about something, like memorizing the testimonies from Special Witnesses, and from there you'll get this insatiable desire to be around and read from those who are a little over-the-top in their obsession with .... really whatever.
Elder Holdaway: I've gotta go.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

That's Better, in which I finally Feel Like it's Christmas Time

I couldn't figure out why it didn't feel like Christmas time. Then I discovered this.

Now I feel much better.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

First Discussion, in which this conversation took place:

Me: "Joshua, it's time for bed. I love you. Good night."
Joshua: "Good night Daddy." walks around the corner to head to his bedroom but stops.
Me: (hearing whipsering) "Joshua, why are you whispering?"
Joshua: (after a few moments of more whispering) "I was saying a prayer. Prayers are good, huh?"
Me: "Yes. Prayers are really good. I'm glad you were saying one. Good night pal."
Joshua: "Daddy, there's just one thing I want to talk to you about before I go to bed."
Me: "What's that?"
Joshua: "I want to talk to you about the scriptures."
Me: "Ok, what about the scriptures do you want to talk about?"
Joshua: "How did Heavenly Father create the earth? Tell me everything about Heavenly Father and Jesus. Why did Jesus come to earth?"
Me: "Most people believe in a supreme being, though they may call him by different names ..."

No, that's not what I said, but everything else is accurate.


Yule, in which we visit (or revisit) this:

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The Jury is Out, in which this conversation may or may not have taken place:

Girl in Joshua's Kindergarten class (aka The Troublemaker): "Josh, I think I'm in love with you."
Joshua: "Hoo-wow! Not bad."

Monday, November 23, 2009

Handshakes All Around! in which We remember 10 years Ago


Though I remember 10 years ago right about this time too. We were at a bowling alley. I was wearing a Jeffrie's Fan Club t-shirt. It was 1999, and things were about to change for me forever.

The next day, November 24th, the day before Thanksgiving, my parents drove me a few miles east of our house and dropped me off to live for three weeks before flying out to Michigan for two years.

I'm not sure about this, but I think that year was the only time they had any incoming missionaries the day before Thanksgiving.

Our first full day we spent going to devotionals, hanging out with nothing to do, and watching Legacy. I'm sure they thought this was a good idea, but observing hundreds of young men recently separated from their girlfriends watching the kissing scenes was kind of depressing.

Ten years. Whew!

And then, there was that time a few days before leaving the MTC that Mikey, Aaron, and Spencer visited me. We have a picture of the four of us (fully clothed) in the "tree of life" showers.

How did I get away with that?

Mom sent me cinnamon rolls one day. And that was awesome.

I weighed 140 pounds.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

And Out Come the Wolves, in which I decide this is the greatest punk album of all time

Really. It is.

"Ah, turn it up!"

"Oy oy oy!"

"Na na na na, na na na na, na na na!"

"The radio was playin', Desmond Dekker was singin'..."

Journey to the End of East Bay's bass line and concise telling of the Operation Ivy story: "Four kids on tour, three thousand miles, in a four door car, not know what was goin' on."

"Black coat, white shoes, black hat, Cadillac..."

"Ruby Ruby Ruby Ruby Soho!"

That's evidence enough.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Red Head, in which Joshua wears a red beanie to school for Red Ribbon Week

We pulled up to Joshua's school, and before getting out of the van, Josh played a little game with Jack to make him laugh. As he hopped out of the van he said to me, "Take care of him for me."

"I will, dude."

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

29 years in the Making, in which Holdinator has a birthday

It took me 29 years, but I finally reached my star birthday.

I was hoping that for my birthday the Carolina Panthers would light up the Dallas Cowboys' defense, because then I would have won in fantasy football this week. But that didn't happen.

It's my own fault though, I guess. I'm the one with Frank Gore as a running back (left the game after one carry with an injury) and TO as one of my receivers (first time in many years that he didn't catch a single pass in a game). At least my quarterback, Jay Cutler, is making some improvements from his first game this season.

If you can't tell, during my 29th year of life I discovered another way to be a geek.

Friday, September 25, 2009

66, in which Holdinator misses his Dad

Today is my Dad's 66th birthday. It's really strange that he's not here for us to celebrate it with him.

My intent in posting about this today is very different from my other posts on this blog. Probably for the first time I'm posting solely because I know my family will appreciate these thoughts, and not for any other reason.
Dad isn't in very many pictures, and there's a good (but really not-so-good) reason for that.

Dad is the photographer. He instilled in every one of his children an appreciation for a good photo. He reveled in my taking a photography class as a senior in high school. He helped me create beautiful pictures for my projects, and let me use his really nice camera that semester.

Probably he instilled in each of us an appreciation for goofy pictures. The fish eye lens was a favorite of ours. I don't have any of those pictures here. But we all remember.

There's one of those shirts David talked about at Dad's funeral.
Here's a favorite in our house. In spite of how his appearance changed throughout the last years of his life, his smile was constant.
Each of the kids has adopted a Rich-ism or a few. I find myself almost every day making one of the mini-Holdinators laugh using a game, a face, or a noise that I learned from their Papa. I hope that I don't forget to give him credit.
Jack's memories of Papa. He'll absolutely remember him. We will make sure of that.

13 months ago Papa came to the hospital to meet his little grandson.
19 weeks ago this evening I took Jack with me to the hospital. We were told we needed to hurry. I went through a number of reasons in my head why we would need to hurry, but that we wouldn't be able to talk to Dad or give him a blessing did not occur to me.

It couldn't occur to me.

I was holding Jack at the receptionists' desk in the ER. The look of realization on their faces when I told them who I was, it was a look of sudden quiet and lack of rushing in the midst of a place where everyone was rushing to do everything (why would they slowly lead us to his room? I thought) should have been indicative of the reality of the situation.

It was very comforting, to me, to have Jack there. I could hold him as tight as I wanted, and he didn't mind. Jack didn't know what was going on, but he was good for a lot of hugs; somehow instinctively he understood his role that night. Love and be loved.

Papa made all of his grandkids laugh. That was what he did best with them.

That was one of the things he did best with everyone.