Monthly Archives: June 2007

Little Haden

Last night Larilyn and I went to Claim Jumper. It was supposed to be because she had never been there, but she actually ended up going there recently. She still hadn’t had the chocolate chip calzone though, so it was still a required trip. It sounds like things haven’t changed in Vista. I’m happy where I am in Murrieta. There is a lot going on, but there is just so much detail that is taken care of that it is wonderful. I love President Mattson and the Dave’s along with all the others in the leadership, the shepherds and all the members.

Tonight, I took Amanda to BJ’s for her first time there and got to meet little Haden. Amanda looks like she makes a perfect mother, I am so proud of her. Nathaniel is quite the daddy too. I even had my turn… This is only going to cause me trouble, but it kind of made me want my own…

haden-1.jpg haden-2.jpg haden-3.jpg haden-4.jpg

As we were getting ready to leave BJ’s tonight, Nathaniel and I started talking about tomorrow. He is planning on going to the Brad Paisley concert at Coors. I had been thinking about going, but knew I couldn’t get out of working a wedding as I was already short staffed. I then realized that I could probably be out of the wedding early enough that I could make it to the show. I don’t know why I didn’t think about that earlier, but oh well. Fortunately, tickets were still available, both for real seats and the open grass. I went ahead and got a 4 pack of general admission. Nathaniel already had one sold. Amanda and I will use up two of them, so I’m left with one which may or may not be available. If you’re interested let me know. If you’re interested and my ticket has been taken, you can probably still get some from ticketmonster.

Tucson Timeline Set

Today alternated between quite and crazy. Things were pretty quiet at the office for my first hour or two and then everything happened at once. Emails started flowing in, the phones started ringing, UPS showed up, it was crazy. Then I had some quiet time again and just as I was getting ready to walk out the door I got inundated again. Instead of leaving shortly after noon, I ended up leaving at 2, going to the bank, Costco for gas, hunting down a FedEx Ground truck to give a box to and then finally getting on the road around 2:30 to El Cajon. I had to take a piece of gear down there for an event tomorrow. I ended up getting stuck in traffic on the way back, but it wasn’t too bad. I still got home at a decent time, about 5:30, so it was earlier than usual.

I decided since I didn’t make it riding on Saturday, or at all last week, that I really needed to get out there. Even though Ryan was in Hollywood covering Paris Hilton’s release from prison, I decided to go by myself. It seemed like it took half as long without him there, but it was only about a quarter as fun. I got to check out the work on Alta Vista as part of the ride, so that was cool. One of the people I talked to while I was there said that they moved a lot of dirt today. Another said that they would be done in two weeks. Apparently, checking out the road construction is the most exciting thing to happen in our part of town. It was really nice riding on Alta Vista with the road closed to thru traffic because there was no one on it.

I watched Over the Hedge tonight. It was pretty good, but not exceptional. I was thinking I should be doing other stuff, but it was nice to have an hour or so of uninterrupted movie watching. I thought it was pretty funny, and probably would have been a good movie for tomorrow night.

I spent some of my quiet time in the office this morning trying to find a place for the dogs. (Don’t tell my boss I spent company time and used the company’s internet for personal use.) I was hoping to have them placed last week, but it really needs to happen this week one way or another. I don’t know what I’m going to do with them if somebody doesn’t volunteer to take them. If we can get the dogs out this week, I can have the house cleaned next week and then we can go out there to put it on the market the week of the 10th. So, anyone that wants to go to Tucson: July 10-12 (Tue-Thur) is the current plan, mostly dependent on the dogs at this point. If we get a buyer within a week and close escrow in 30 days, we’ll be right on track for six months.

I’m starting to think more and more about leaving the furniture there and just trying to sell it. There are some things that I could use, but I don’t know if they are worth transporting and storing. I need to get the lady I talked to about purchasing the estate out there to let me know what she thinks it could be worth. If I was able to grab all the things that I want on this July trip, it could possibly be the last trip out there. Otherwise, there would be a final one once the house is sold or at least in escrow to clean it out and bring the rest back to CA, but I just can’t decide if it is worthwhile or not. I know selling the furniture won’t bring in much cash, but it is probably going to cost over $500 in trucking to get the furniture and other stuff back to CA, and I’d have to beg someone to come along to help.

There are so many little things still to be done… What to do?

Busy Activity Week

First off, to continue my rant from last week: I got a check today from Vantage West Credit Union where my mom had about $1k. I visited them when I was out in Tucson and requested they close the account and send me the money. They did. I still have seen nothing from TIAA-CREF, even though supposedly something was mailed last Monday.

In other news though… Things got pretty busy last week. The office wasn’t too crazy or different, it’s still been fairly quiet, which I think I am starting to get used to. I’m actually starting to see me get things done now that I’ve been wanting to do for a while. It actually feels kind of good, but I do miss the high velocity days too!

Wednesday night we played identity game at the stake center. It was good, but really hard for me not knowing many people very well. The identity I ended up using for the one round I was in was owning a house in Arizona. I thought that would be a hard one for people to figure out, and I was one of the last ones standing when they called it out, but in retrospect, it probably wouldn’t have been that hard to guess. It would have been nice to hear the background on some of the people identities, but it sounds like we will be playing this game again so maybe we’ll get to continue learning.

Thursday evening Nathaniel and I went to the San Diego Zoo to check out the show. It was the final dress rehearsal before it opened Friday night and the preview for the zoo executives. It wasn’t at all what I was expecting, but I don’t know what I was expecting to be honest. The show itself was pretty short, but we ended up being there pretty late. I had no problems talking Nathaniel into stopping at In-N-Out on the way home for some much needed dinner.

On the way down, I ended up taking the 5, which is not like me at all. There actually was no traffic, but it would have been worthwhile just to drive past the Temple. I think it was the first time I have driven near the SD Temple since I became a member.

I got to the office really late Friday morning, but I got done what I needed to get done. As soon as UPS showed up, I was off to run errands such as delivering tape to Old Town Temecula Theater. I was supposed to go to Batch’s to get the video camera for Ryan, but found out that Batch was already en route. He redirected me back to the shop to get haze fluid for his new hazer. Eventually, I made it home, changed for a wedding and headed out. The wedding went fairly smoothly from what I remember. I came home, had dinner with the family, took a second shower because it was too stinking hot and then went back to Murrieta. Zach had invited me and some others over to his house and then to go miniature golfing. I think we all had fun. I even pulled out the camera and took a bunch of pictures. I probably drove everyone crazy with the flash and my rapid firing, but it was fun. After we got kicked out, cause they closed, we headed over to Chilis. It was way past my bedtime, but I stayed for a while, took a few more pictures, looked at some we had taken earlier, chatted and ate an entire molten chocolate cake. I was going to wait for Amanda and split it with her, but she was still stuck at GT.

Saturday, I spent most of the day trying to figure out how to automate the process of getting photos from iPhoto to WordPress. Short story: It isn’t possible. There are a few utilities out there, but they all seem to have major problems in one way or another. I wasn’t actually able to get one to do the whole thing, although it seemed that two of them got about half-way. I really want something to do it just like it is done manually through wp. Each thumbnail should be linked to a page where you can see a larger version and leave comments about that picture. You can then further click on the picture to get the “full size” image, but you don’t leave the familiar site until that time. Some of the ones I saw had javascript or ajax pop-up windows, but I think that would drive me crazy and none of them seemed easy to test installing. I ended up having iPhoto export a webpage and then changing all the links to work from inside a blog post. It wasn’t great, and doesn’t give the ability for individual comments, but it’s better than nothing. I’ll keep looking.

Saturday’s wedding went well. I had some time to take pictures of some of the gear at Arbor Terrace, which I have been trying to do for some time now. I want to post an article about it, but have wanted to have pictures. I actually went through them and wrote a decent article, I think, about the new venue, so hopefully I can get that posted this week with the pictures to let people see some of what we have done. I came home from the wedding and had a nice quiet night at home with a movie, The Guardian. It was pretty good, but it kept me up fairly late again.

I took the opportunity to sleep in on Sunday. I finally decided to get up once I realized I was the only one in the house still in bed, even though I had been awake for a few hours. I had some time to read the lessons, but was pretty much out of time for anything else. Nathaniel called and needed the remote for my DVD player for the zoo, so I found that and rushed out the door to meet him on the way to Church. Things went well there. One of the talks discussed answers to prayers and how quickly we expect them. He used a good analogy of how communication has changed for us from pre phones to landlines to pagers to cell phones to text messaging on smartphones. But God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. We may not get an answer to a prayer as fast as we get an answer to a text message from a friend. No answer may even be the answer we are supposed to get at the time. We were also encouraged by our high council speaker to be better missionaries, to open our doors to others. Sunday school went great, I love all of our teachers. I just found out that Lindsay is going to be leaving us late this summer and am so disappointed. Disappointed really isn’t the right word because I am not disappointed in her, just sad that she will be leaving. We’re going to have a hard time filling the shoes left by Lindsay, Shawn and Taylor.

The Dowden’s invited me over for dinner so that I wouldn’t have to drive to Fallbrook to drive back to Murrieta later that evening. I really appreciated it. I had no idea however that everyone was coming over and that it was going to be a huge party, but it was nice because I got to get to know many new people and even learned some new games. I ended up talking with Marissa about my house hunting endeavor and she immediately started trying to find me a house. It sounds like I need to get my act together and figure out where I want to be and what features I need (aside from a laundry room not being on the route in from the garage of course) and maybe we can make this happen. We actually got so into looking at houses and talking with the Dowdens that neither of us made it to branch prayer, but I think it was still good. I actually had a good talk with Bro. Dowden regarding how much I appreciate the branch, President Mattson and the leadership found there. This place is stating to feel more like home each week.

Finally, today. I spent the morning going through calls and mail, but spent most of the afternoon working on a write-up of Arbor Terrace for the website and preparing for our meeting this evening. Larilyn finally called me back this evening as I was preparing for FHE; I thought she had fallen off the face of the earth. Turns out she was just hiding at home and wanted to see how worried I would get. FHE went well and I think I’m going to leave it at that because I’ve been typing for too long and I need to get some sleep!

Don’t Give Fidelity Your Money

So much for getting sleep… I left the house this morning without eating breakfast! I got down the road and started wondering why I was so hungry. I started thinking: I remember taking a shower. I remember reading my email and calling Karen back regarding a snake that needed to be made asap. I remember going through other email. I even remember taking time when I was running late to read a chapter in Alma before leaving. I don’t remember eating. Wait, I got sidetracked before eating breakfast!

I can’t remember much about yesterday at the office, so I guess that means things went fairly smoothly. Oh, I do remember that a customer called who is renting some of our uhf-r sticks this week and said that one of the sticks wouldn’t turn on. Nathaniel drove down there to figure it out. It seems like it could have been battery related as he put in a new (or actually old) set of batteries and it worked fine. He put the batteries back and it worked again, so we don’t know what the issue was.

At FHE, Sabrina taught about preparing ourselves for marriage. It was an interesting lesson. I appreciate all the opportunities we have to learn how to be better prepared and better ourselves, but I just can’t help but think how following 1 Cor 13 pulls everything together: Love is patient, love is kind…. I think if we truly follow that we’re set. Maybe I’m wrong and maybe something from these lessons sometime will open my eyes to a better way. I didn’t get to spotlight Melissa, so I guess we’ll do that next week. I’m sure there was a reason for this, making sure I am there or something.

After FHE, Tara invited me to go to Chilis with some of the others. I decided it would be good to spend some time with them, but I didn’t think it was going to take all night. Before I knew it, we were still sitting there and it was almost 11! Hence why I didn’t get much sleep last night.

This morning was fairly quiet so I was able to get caught up with almost everything from being gone last week. UPS showed up with a bunch of wireless systems that we then started racking and preparing for a customer who needs them tomorrow.

I took a break from the rack-mounting and wiring expedition for a while to call Fidelity to try and get some information from them about an account my mom might have had there. Last month when I called, they gave me all sorts of paperwork to fill out, telling me that anyone who might have been a beneficiary needs to fill out this seven page form and mail it in for them to review. I did this on 5/30 and got a letter yesterday stating that they needed more information from me. I didn’t give them an original death certificate because I don’t even know if there is more than $10 in the account to cover the cost of the certificate. They won’t even acknowledge if she has an account there without a certified copy. They further want me to verify that I am in fact a beneficiary. They haven’t made this clear to me as to how to do this. Finally, they want me to get a signature guarantee on my distribution request which is good for at least the amount of the distribution. They won’t tell me what the amount of the distribution is going to be, so I have no way of knowing what to get it certified for!

Here’s what I’ve learned from this process. First, don’t tell banks the truth. It won’t get you anywhere. Just lie and tell them that you are the person holding the account you are trying to access. Answer their stupid security questions which any idiot should be able to figure out and you’ll get the information you need. Then tell them that you really aren’t that person, but you appreciate their helpfulness. Banks are holding your money to make money. If they distribute the money, they can’t charge you fees for holding your money any longer.

Most importantly, don’t ever give Fidelity or TIAA-CREF a penny of your money. Actually, give them a penny because it will probably cost them more money to mange it that the penny is worth to you. Better yet, see if you can take distributions on your penny over your life expectancy (one might need to start with $1 for this) so that they can loose 41 cents mailing you a check every year or month for the rest of your life! Neither one of these companies is actually competent enough to have a phone system that works. To get in touch with someone at TIAA, I had to randomly guess my way through menu trees and then stump the system with invalid access codes to get someone to talk to. With Fidelity, they won’t even give you a list of options or transfer you to a representative until you have provided them – and whoever has hacked into their phone system – your social security number. Of course, if you don’t have an account there, the system will tell you it doesn’t recognize you and will ask you to enter your SSN again. After doing this about twelve times, the system might give up and transfer you to a rep who won’t be able to help you. Unfortunately, it gets worse if the system does recognize your SSN. Then you’ll have to enter your access code before you can go anywhere.

I told TIAA-CREF that I wouldn’t give them one penny of my money because they couldn’t figure out how to answer a phone. I told Fidelity Investments the same thing today because they refuse to pay out funds to the beneficiary of an account. Maybe I should mail them my mothers ashes and they can do DNA testing on them to determine if she really is dead. I really need to stop griping about these horrible companies and get some sleep, so I’m going to leave it at that. Long story short, if you care about your money and your beneficiaries, don’t keep any of your assets with Fidelity Investments or TIAA-CREF. Also, for those who may be joining this blog post solely because of my rant, my mother passed away in late March and the only people who have done anything is the life insurance company and a credit union. They even paid good interest for the days it took for them to process the claim. Arizona’s retirement benefits contacted me fairly rapidly, but I haven’t actually seen any money from them. CalTech Credit Union was wonderful. They transferred the money within a few days of receiving a death certificate and mailed the original one back to me!

P.S. The tagline on the sponsored link for Fidelity is “We can help you make a smart move.” Well, I can vouch that the only smart move they may help you make is to take you money away from them. This is a company that supposedly will help you with retirement and investment management, but they can’t even give me the information so I can plan how to take a distribution from a freaking IRA!

Returned from Tucson

I can’t say that I accomplished everything I was hoping to in Tucson, but I think I made a valiant attempt. I realized that without the assistance of someone else, I couldn’t move some of the bigger furniture items, but I was able to do most of the other work. We can get a cleaning crew in there as soon as we find a home for the dogs and then we can make the final settings on the next trip to put the house on the market. I brought back this ancient bible we found in the garage on a previous trip. There was a weekly calendar for a Topeka church from 1930ish in there. The bible could be from the late 1800s from what I gathered. The question is how did my mom end up with it, and what does Topeka have to do with it. The best possible answer we have at this point is that possibly Bessie gave it to her when she was in Kansas back when Esther was in Germany.

I also brought back my moms ashes which she wants to have scattered near a lighthouse or ocean along with those of the pets – Sebastian and Nicole. Now I just have to figure out where and how to do this.

Friday was pretty hectic in the office, which was nice. I really needed hectic after the last few days. I didn’t get through any of the mail or get any of the bills paid, but it looked like everything could wait until Monday. I had to cut out early for a wedding at GT. I did the Arbor Terrace wedding, but I had noticed that the name of the mansion wedding party sounded familiar as one of the members of the branch. I dismissed it as I figured it was just someone else. Sure enough through, when I went to grab my clipboard, I saw “Clergy: President Alma Mattson” and realized I did know the couple. It turns out they got married in the temple earlier that morning and were just doing a ring ceremony and reception. It was good to see President and Sister Mattson and a few other members there; it was a nice surprise.

Saturday morning Ryan and I kept up our riding, we even did a bit of exploring. We had smelled a fire in the air, but it was foggy, so we couldn’t tell where it was coming from. We found it at 76 and Via Monserate. While we were there I also got to see the lot for the new LDS meetinghouse. I had thought it was going to be right on the corner of 76, but it turns out it is farther up the road, according to the protest signs, anyway. The lot looks more than large enough for the much needed meetinghouse. When I got home, I blew off the driveway, got Tucson vacuumed out of my car and got all the bugs from El Centro washed off the front. I did another wedding (2/7), came home and watched a movie.

I slept in this morning and woke up to find that Jeff’s internet wasn’t working. We had discovered it late last night, but I was hoping it would start working in the morning. I made sure I was ready for Church before heading over to get him going again. I was planning on replacing the router as it sounded like it was the problem, but I came to find out that the router was working fine, and his server had just turned off for some random reason. I started looking into it, but ran out of time before I was able to track down why it turned off.

Branch council and Church in general went well.

Well, there is probably more to say, but I do need to be up in six hours…

Pics from the Drive

No comments about how I shouldn’t be taking pictures when I’m driving or other stuff like that, alright? Be happy when I’m only taking the pictures with my phone. It’s when I whip out the real deal that you should be worried, especially when the cops are around:

Az Hwy Patrol

But, let’s start from the beginning. I hadn’t even left I-15 before spotting this truck with some extra stuff on it’s lift gate:

Photo_061207_001.jpg

I guess 24 feet just wasn’t quite enough. Something just seems illegal with that.

I wasn’t too click happy on the way to Tucson, so I don’t have any other interesting pictures to share.

Just as the drive back was starting to get boring, Arizona decided it was time to really see if one could stay awake, and between the cones. I was starting to think of food and getting out of the car. I was counting down the minutes till Yuma, and then this happened:

DSC_9216.jpgDSC_9214.jpg

I was stuck in a construction zone — behind a semi! New pavement is nice, but not when you have to wait for the guys to put it down…

DSC_9217.jpg

And the cops are just waiting there for you:

Az Hwy Patrol

Trying to look on the bright side of things, it was good for my gas mileage.

DSC_9220.jpg

I’m glad my air conditioning was working and I sure don’t know how those guys were out paving the road in the middle of summer. I would think that is something that would be done while it is dark!

DSC_9224.jpg

I stopped to get gas at a new station in Yuma. The price had dropped 10 cents from Tuesday to Thursday, I just couldn’t believe it! (Unfortunately that meant that I had filled up too early when I arrived in Tucson on Tuesday.) In any event, I knew this was the place to go because it had good priced gas, was brand new, had a Subway and a Chester’s! I later found out the Chester’s serves chicken and was basically part of the Subway.

DSC_9226.jpg

Apparently, people in Yuma don’t all have cell phones yet. I guess they assume they don’t have quarters either, but talking on the phone is real important. Of course, it is way too hot to stand outside and talk at a pay phone, so why not do it from the comfort of your table?

Photo_061407_002.jpg

I crossed the state line back into California, and I wasn’t sure if I was on the right road. I guess I have never come back into Calif. while there was still a good amount of sunlight outside. I was seeing all sorts of new things I hadn’t noticed before. When I came up to the sand dunes, I was amazed. I nearly drove off the road a few times as I was admiring the shadows and sunlight on the sand. I was too amazed to think about getting pictures, but it wouldn’t have captured how beautiful it was anyway. I later tried to get a sample of this beautiful work of God, but the pictures don’t even start to show what it looked like.

DSC_9233.jpgDSC_9234.jpg

Thank You for Staying at [[Resort_Name]]

I didn’t get much sleep last night. Between it being freaking hot in Tucson and not being able to breathe because of the dogs and/or remaining cat hair it just didn’t work out too well. I think it was after midnight when I finally got to sleep and I must have woken up every hour or more frequently. When 5:30 rolled around, i was ready to get up and face the day, regardless of the amount of sleep I hadn’t received.

I will admit that I was not quite as productive as I was hoping to be, but we are making progress. I spent a lot of time looking at things and walking in circles around the house trying to decide where to start. I think I did a good number of little things to move towards getting ready to be on the market. I think the living room is almost there with the exception of moving some big items around which I could not do by myself. The bedroom is looking good as well. I moved some items out and cleaned up a bunch of little things. There is certainly room for cleaning to be done, but I’m going to bring in professionals for that job. I’m hoping to tackle the office tomorrow. I got through some stuff in there, but it was drawers, so it doesn’t look like I have made any progress when in fact I have.

I met with an agent this morning who seemed to really have it together. I think he could be a good match, but we’re going to see if Greg’s referral works out as well. He suggested putting the house on the market as soon as possible to catch the summer activity and listing it at $229. That’s certainly lower than I was hoping for, but we want to be realistic and price it to sell.

I went to Fudds for lunch, which was good considering that Chad had just sent me a picture of a brownie from there! I went to Chase to deposit some checks and went to Vantage West Credit Union to close the account there. I was able to save the notary fee and was able to get back the original death certificate by going in person, so that saved $20! They also ended up having another form that I needed to fill out, so it was good I was there in person.

I took Wanda and Dottie out to dinner tonight and we discussed some plans for the house and hybrid cars. She has the Highlander and was wondering about the hybrid version. Wanda has been so wonderful in helping to clear out items that this job would be enormous without her help. I worked on getting some of the lamps replaced in the house this evening along with making a plan of attack for tomorrow. I’m glad I started checking lamps before purchasing as I would have bought 8 makup mirror lamps for the bathroom before discovering that almost all of the current ones were in good working condition, they just weren’t screwed in all the way! I’m probably the one that unscrewed them to turn most of them off, so I shouldn’t complain to anyone but myself yet.

I determined that I was going to get a better nights sleep tonight, so i checked into the Holiday Inn Express down the street, where I am now. I didn’t really want to pay for the room, but I figured it would be a small investment in helping me to get home safely tomorrow night. And now I think it is time to get some sleep myself. Please continue to help try and find a home for the dogs, pray for them and for me to have a successful and safe day tomorrow!

Made it to Arizona

I left a bit later this morning than I was originally planning on, but I made it here none the less. I was originally hoping to leave at 9 so that I could have time to get some stuff done here. Ryan and I ended up going for a ride this morning and then I got wrapped up with some other things before leaving. I decided to update my music before leaving, so I bought a bunch of albums from iTunes, including:
Emerson Drive – Countrified
Keith Urban – Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy Thing (iTunes plus even)
Taylor Swift – Taylor Swift
Big & Rich – You Never Stop Loving Somebody & Lost in This Moment (Just those songs, not the whole album)
Josh Aldean – Relentless
Julianne Hough – Will You Dance With Me

Apple iTunes

I almost made it through all of them on my way here, but I still have a few songs left to listen to, so I guess I got just the right number of new songs! I spent some time talking and some time just thinking, which can be quite scary as well.

I finally got to the house around 9 after stopping at Cracker Barrel and then Target to get breakfast for the morning. I started looking at things and there is just so much here I don’t even know where to start. There are so many items that I hate to just throw away, but I don’t know what to do with them as they need to go somewhere. Things really take on a new meaning when you are considering that it has to go somewhere – is this worth moving to a new house? Is it worth storing for a few months? There is just a lot. I hope I can get through a good portion of it Wednesday and Thursday as I’m not sure how many more trips out here I am going to want to make out here…

Well, please wish me luck having a productive time here in Arizona, a safe trip back and finding a home for the dogs!

Off to Arizona

Weddings are certainly in the air. GT had seven weddings this last weekend, of which I was lucky enough to work three of. They have another seven this weekend, although I will only be working two somehow or another. I’m not sure I have anything special to report about the weddings, just that this is going to be one crazy wedding season. Know anyone that wants to work some weddings?

Ryan and I went for a ride on Saturday, for the first time in a while. We really need to stick to it or I need to give up ice cream. We all know that one of those isn’t going to happen, so we better hope the first one happens. After the ride I put together a gazebo for our patio with the family. It was quite an operation for only having three steps!

Sunday was fairly typical. At Branch Prayer, Sister Morris gave a thought about caring for the environment which got us talking about hybrids. She is looking to buy the Civic hybrid so I gave her my impression after driving the Camry Hybrid. I do enjoy it, I appreciate it’s mileage when I put gas in it and it is pretty cool to be sitting in traffic with the engine off. On the other hand, now that I’m not driving to school and I’m looking to move near the office, I’m not sure how much I really need it, but oh well – It’s a sunk cost now!

Today went fairly well. I got through all the things I was hoping to do at the office today including getting the estimated tax payments done even though they aren’t due until Friday. The place was fairly quiet, but we got things done and hopefully are moving forward. Our meeting tonight even went as planned and for the first time we actually got through everything that was on my agenda!

Sabrina told me yesterday that I was going to be spotlighted at FHE tonight. I thought I had just done this, but I realized it was about two months ago, that the branch has changed since then and that there was still probably more to tell about myself. It was actually nice because we did it different this time. I was interviewed by Emily and then she presented her findings. The part I didn’t know about was that I now need to pick someone for next week and spotlight them. Any volunteers? I’m thinking it might be time for Melissa to go after volunteering Amanda last time I had to choose someone…

I’m off to Arizona tomorrow. I’m hoping to get through the house and work on getting it in sell-able condition. Alison was going to come along and help, but every-time I plan the trip she comes up with an excuse not to go. They have been good excuses, like job interviews, but it still would have been nice to have the company, both for the house cleaning and the long drive. I guess this will make up for my lack of driving to Fullerton in the last month. Of course, if there is anyone out there lurking who has nothing better to do this week, let me know.

The big thing that still needs to be dealt with is what to do with the dogs. I didn’t get any nibbles from my craigslist ad in the last two weeks, so I doubt that is going anywhere. I wish I could take them myself, but I can’t do that here in Fallbrook as my dad won’t allow it and I need the dogs out of the house to sell it. I’m thinking about calling the vet they’ve been to for a lead. Any suggestions would be appreciated, along with your prayers for their safety and happiness.

VW Bug Growing Tree

As I was leaving Church this evening I pulled up next to this black VW bug. I did a double take once I realized it had a tree growing out of it! I guess it was a good thing they had a sunroof. I’ve seen peopling hanging out before, but I think this is my first time seeing a tree sticking through. The picture is kind of hard to see as it was dark and the car was black, but if you look closely you should be able to make out the tree! I’m sure the people in the car saw me take the picture…

vwtree.jpg

Costco Gas Station

Last week I stopped to get gas one morning at Costco in Temecula. There is almost always a line. Sometimes it is really bad and other times it is tolerable. This particular morning I was early. It was a tad bit before 8 and look what I found:

costcogas.jpg

Pretty remarkable, huh? There was only a few people there and I was able to pull in and get going. I think I even made it to work before 8 that morning!

little things are the BIG things.

I went to the dentist this morning to get my teeth cleaned and for my annual checkup. I was thinking as I was driving there about setting the date for my next appointment. If I move to Murrieta, I wouldn’t want to be in Fallbrook first thing in the morning. In fact, I would probably want to do it on my way to a wedding or something. I didn’t have a wedding schedule six months out, so I couldn’t plan that way, but it just got me thinking about the possible move which has been out of my mind for a bit lately.

I was thinking on my way to the office about calling Veranda to find out when they would have their next Craftsman Plan 4 available, but I guess I got too wrapped up in work to think about it. Things were sufficiently busy today. I had a few calls and quotes to keep me busy along with a visit from a rep.

I also did some thinking today about life… Tina reminded me yesterday evening about an agreement we made, that we would go to law school together someday. Well, I guess that someday is coming up and she was getting ready to call it in. I haven’t heard back from here where or what kind of law, but it just got me thinking as to all the little things in life that can really change your life plan in a second.

Almost on the same train of thought, I watched Deja Vu last night. It’s a movie about a terrorist attack on a boat and this machine that lets them see things four plus days ago. This allowed them to see how things came together before the attack and without giving too much away, they tried to figure out how to stop it from happening. It also reinforced my theory that the little things really are the big things.

Say I did go to law school with Tina. Would I continue with CBC at that point? Would I still want to buy a house in Murrieta/Winchester? Would I start working in the field? See, the little things are the big things!

I really can’t think of much else worth reporting at this point, so I think I’m going to get some sleep.

Doesn’t BYU have a law school?