Monthly Archives: March 2008

Catching Up

I did fairly well today playing catchup. I had to start by getting my phone to stay connected to Exchange as some random task was causing problems. I got through all the email that wasn’t waiting for some other action and got some other things done as well. It was actually fairly quiet I guess. Hopefully that will help us get things done and we can move forward with getting things together and increasing business.

I was debating about not going to FHE tonight, wanting to enjoy potentially my only night at home this week and I decided to be there. I can’t say that I really learned much, but we had fun and that’s got to be worth something.

Head Start

I was called as First Counselor in the Elder’s Quorum Presidency today. I’m a little scared of the amount of work that this calling is going to involve, but I am anxious to find out how I can better serve. (And yes, I now have four (4) callings!) We had some good classes today, and a good thanks to Stephanie during her class. I’m really going to be sad to see her go. I was thinking today about when Brother Dowden and I were talking about going out to Missouri to see her and take her to dinner a few months ago. The crazy part is that I think that is something we might actually do! I was thinking if that would be something appropriate to do with Tara as well. I haven’t been to Florida in years, maybe I can find a business excuse to go there and take her and her companion out for lunch on their prep day.

I skipped branch prayer tonight as I was feeling really tired and wanted to get a jump start on getting ready for bed. I really didn’t want to be up till 11, so i thought by getting home an hour early I could get to bed around 10, which is looking good. I’ve actually gotten quite a bit done tonight, including getting things online for the next week. I guess I’m ahead of schedule since I haven’t written to Tara yet, so maybe it will be 11 before I get into bed.

I had a meeting this morning with Michael and Kelsey. We talked and they encouraged me to be a better member missionary. I really do need to step up to the plate since I probably have more non-member friends than most and see who I can refer to the missionaries. Any volunteers?

Well, the writing is done and it isn’t even 10:30 yet, so there is hope. I’m going to bed, peace out ya’ all.

Live Free or Die Hard

I just finished watching Live Free or Die Hard. It was pretty good, I just gave it 5 stars at Netflix. Maybe I was just in the mood for action, or maybe it was really a good movie, but I recommend it. It really is scary if you think about what someone could do if they tapped into all of our systems. I know what a nightmare it is when my email doesn’t work for a few hours. Think if it was down for good and you couldn’t work on it while you were sitting in total gridlock traffic!

Do you ever wonder how different life would be if it weren’t for little decisions that we make along the way? I have seriously drifted away from the computer side of things and could be doing so many different things if I had pursed that. Heck, I could have been one of those guys in the movie hacking into things or I could have been someone working against them. I have to think back to what Glen used to say, that’d I’d be one of those making over $1M a year within two years. And look at where I have gone. I’m not saying I have regrets or anything, I just think it is interested to ponder what if sometimes. What if I had stayed in Idaho? What if I was still working at Fallbrook High today? There is a lot to be said for where I am right now, but there is always the lure of something different, something unknown, something more exciting.

This was an interesting week. I didn’t write much, nor did I spent too much time pondering. I really didn’t do much, at least not much that would really be interesting. It looks like I last wrote Monday, so I’ll pick it up from Tuesday where I made it home early enough to go for a bikeride before it got dark. It was great and I’m really glad that I actually did it instead of just sitting around and talking about it all the time. Wednesday I went to the activity at church, foosball which was fairly fun. I just took pictures, and then tried to stay alive when it turned into a crazy soccer game. Thursday I skipped institute to get home and to sleep early so I could be up really early Friday to be in the 6 o’clock session at the temple. It was good to spend the day there and the place was packed. At one point we had more people than would fit in one room, so we had to split up into two groups, and there were probably others that were on a different track already. After the temple I went to BJ’s for Brooke’s birthday party.

I rested most of today, watching TV and just hanging out at the house. I was beat from getting up so early the day before and just the week in general I think. I was thinking that when I go back to Minnesota a week from now, I should make it a point of getting to the St. Paul Temple. I called them today and they’ve got sessions at 6 & 7 p.m. on Tuesday as well as a few Wednesday afternoon. I’m hoping I can make it to one of them somehow. I haven’t figured out the details yet, but hopefully it will all come together. I need to find out what our itinerary is going to be like and see where I can squeeze a session in.

Hoppy Easter

Today was interesting and quite different than the norm. I was up early for a Sunday and wasn’t exactly sure what to do with all my excess time. I normally plan on getting up with just enough time to finish whatever reading I need to do and to get ready for church. With my latest resolve to get up and get going in the mornings though I ended up with almost two hours in which I had nothing I “needed” to do. It was great. I ended up reading and having some time to get caught up with some other things. I even managed to have lunch, something that I can’t remember doing for some time now.

Church was good. We learned to watch our sarcasm, be true and to keep moving forward as the job isn’t done until our Heavenly Father says it is. The fat lady singing doesn’t mean anything in this show. Alyssa and Stephanie sang a great song as well. I can’t believe we’re going to loose both of them in the next month!

I ended up coming home after church for Easter dinner. It was weird, but seemed like the thing to do nonetheless. It was good to be home for it though since we so rarely seem to actually have dinner together. I tried checking into the Murrieta net from home, but I couldn’t hear anyone come back. Maybe they heard me, but who knows. We’re working on moving the net to the repeater which should make it easier for everyone to get on board. After trying the radio and watching Matthew loose his new boomerang in a tree, I decided it was time to head up to the Dowden’s since I said I would be there. I probably wouldn’t have gone if I hadn’t of told Sister and Brother Dowden that I would be there and then Lauren.

I hung out for branch prayer, took a few pictures and then took off to get home at a reasonable time. It never ceases to amaze me how long it takes to really get ready for bed sometimes. I was home at 9:15 and yet I won’t be in bed much before 11, if at all. And all I’ve done was made a few comments on facebook, some text messaging and writing to Tara. I guess instead of talking about not making it to bed, I should stop talking and get there, so I’m going to go put the finishing touches on my letter and get myself to bed so I’m ready for the fun week ahead.

A Year

I stayed home all day today. Well, I guess that isn’t completely true. I never got in my car today. I did go for a bikeride this morning. I wasn’t smart enough to do it earlier in the morning when it was cool. No, I managed to get sidetracked enough so that I didn’t leave the house until after 10 when it was in the lower seventies. It quickly got to eighty which is about twenty degrees outside of my comfort level. I probably didn’t take as many or as long of rest stops as I should have, so I started really paying for it as I was getting closer to home. That kind of lead me to sitting around and listening to music for a while.

I was thinking of all the things that I could do today. There really were so many good options. I thought about getting my taxes done, cleaning the house, reading, going out and having fun. I didn’t get the taxes done, but I did get through the mail and get a corner of my desk cleaned off, which felt good to me. I’m not exactly sure where most of the day went. I didn’t spend too much time on facebook or playing on the internet and yet I can’t figure out where the day went. I did get Susan’s new ReplayTV setup, so once she watches all the programs on her old one I can stop paying for that on a monthly basis.

I also spent some time getting things together to shuffle as much money as possible to paying off  my car each month so hopefully I can speed up the repayment of the loan and save some money in the process. I was thinking a while back that it would be nice to not have the car payment when purchasing a house, but I don’t see any way that it is going to get paid off before that happens if I am to buy soon. I do know that every little bit counts, so therefore I’m going to do what I can instead of just talking about it. I think it may be time to do some housecleaning and get rid of all these accounts that are holding small sums of money that could be put to better use.

My mom passed on a year ago today. Some days it seems like it was so long ago now, yet others it feels just like it was yesterday. Actually I was driving down the road the other day and I thought about something I wanted to call her about. I guess it takes a long time to teach an old dog new tricks. In the last year I made way too many trips to Tucson taking care of the estate and things. I still have things sitting here in my room that I have done nothing with. Does that show how much of a slacker I really am? I guess some part of me hasn’t wanted to deal with things because it would put closure on it and also for the reason that I’m going to move eventually and why bother with it twice?

How much life has changed in a single year… And yet how much is still the same…

Thinking back I guess i should have gone to the temple today. I had actually been thinking about it earlier in the week, but not for that reason, just because it has been a while since I have been. I rationalized that since I will be setting aside a day next week I didn’t need to make the trip this week as well. Probably not the best decision I could have come too, but there are certainly worse things I could have been doing today. Well, I think I’m going to go to bed so I can get a good start tomorrow instead of sleeping all morning. Good night!

Outlook on Outlook

I woke up around 6 this morning and wasn’t even really tired. I think I’m getting back to normal, which I love. I kept myself busy at the office, which was good. It wasn’t too hectic and I was able to cross a lot of things off of my to do list or at least progress forward with them. Exchange is only showing 16 overdue tasks now, cut well over half from what it was this morning.

I discovered yesterday that Outlook has a few features that have really won me over. It almost pains me to say this, but Microsoft has really gotten their act together with Outlook and it is much improved from previous versions. What really won me over the other day was when I was adding flights to my calendar and I was able to set different starting and ending timezones! I can’t believe that no other device has let me do this before because it seems so natural. Apple’s iCal does this weird thing with floating timezones, but that doesn’t really accomplish the job, it just allows you to make your flight when your phone changes timezones.

Another thing I have just started playing with, but makes total sense in Outlook is the ability to have recurring tasks. There are so many tasks that have never made my to do list because they were things that needed to be done on a weekly basis. With the ability to actually have the task repeat I can actually keep better track of things that I need to do and it will help me budget my time more effectively.

Now, that isn’t to say that Outlook isn’t without it’s own fair share of problems, but I’m starting to think it really is the way to go. Windows Mobile needs some serious improvements, primarily in the speed department, but there is no debate that the way the device works is almost like a miracle compared with other devices that have to be manually synced on occasion. If the combination can help me work so much better I can only imagine how much more productive it could make someone with a busier schedule or who is on the road more than me.

I left work a bit early this afternoon to go help Don get his email setup on his laptop before he goes to Hawaii in a few months. The VPN just makes things so easy. I was literally done with his request in a matter of minutes and then worked on some other things that he had on his list. I almost went to Disneyland, but Christa and Batch backed out at the last minute – literally. I had my bags packed and computer basically shut down when they decided they no longer wanted to go. It was good that we didn’t go through because I’m sure with spring break it would have been busy and I thoroughly enjoyed my quiet evening at home.

i was able to get caught up with reading blogs and such, enjoyed a nutritious dinner (cake) and then watched The Da Vinci code. I was a bit worried at first, but the movie turned out really good and was quite interesting. I don’t think I have anything on the agenda for this weekend, but I’m hoping that I can be productive. There is a lot that needs to be done around the house, so hopefully I can put my time to good use.

Tara would be proud of me this week. I think I only went out to eat twice – lunch on Monday and dinner on Wednesday! That might possibly be a new record. I brought lunch on Tuesday (soup) after forgetting on Monday. On Wednesday, I was rushing to get out of the house to catch Alison before she got to work and forgot to get lunch as well, but I decided to stop at the grocery store on the way in and get stuff to make lunch, so I’m stocked for a few more days still. Not only have I been eating at the office, but I have been at work everyday since Tuesday before 9!

Feeling Better

I made it to the office again this morning before 9 and actually am feeling pretty good about it. I think getting myself going in the morning has been helping me to not feel as tired. I’m certainly still feeling tired; I just think it is better now.

It was a fairly typical day at the office. It was still busy, but it wasn’t crazy like it has been which was nice. Maybe I can get caught up tomorrow.

Institute went well tonight, but I was a bit fidgety. No CSI or Without a Trace tonight, so I think I’m going to make it to sleep early. Ticketmaster did sidetrack me into purchasing tickets for Bon Jovi at the Honda Center though tonight. I probably didn’t really need them and may end up selling them later but figured it probably wouldn’t be a horrible investment tonight.

And on that note, I’m going to bed!

No Exception

These last few weeks have just been crazy and today was no exception. Fortunately, it was good work most of the day, but it just didn’t give up until late in the afternoon when I started to have a chance to catch up.

Alison and I went looking at houses tonight. I went back to my favorite, Veranda at Morningstar Ranch. I still like it, but I don’t think I really want to live out there in Wichester and instead want to be closer to Murrieta. I also realized that the family room seemed smaller than I remembered it and while there are many things I love about it, there seemed to be a few things I didn’t really like. Maybe after all this searching it will come down to the three most important things in real estate: location, location and location. I think the next step is to contact a realtor to see what is out there in the locations that I really want to be in and find out how the market is looking.

I was talking with my dad last night and we’re going to make a chart of the price per square foot of houses sold and see if it looks like it is still on a steady decline or if it is starting to level out. It we are curving to level out then it looks like it would be a good time to buy. If things are still looking crazy then I guess I’ll just ride it out a bit longer.

In my rush to leave the house this morning I forgot to take lunch with me, so I decided to stop talking about doing it and put a plan into action on my way to work. I stopped at Vons and picked up some various items for lunch which will probably get me through the next two weeks. I’m honestly not sure it was really any cheaper, but it will probably be healthier for me and should be cheaper in the long run.

I hope it starts to cool down a bit in the office here now, but I’m certainly not one to turn down business. Heck, actually I’d like it if we were this busy all the time because we could afford to hire more people in and keep moving forward. I think we got our quota of shows this month!

Crazy

Getting up early this morning partially worked. The first thought through my head at 6:30 this morning was why in the world did I decide to do this? The funny part was that at about 6:20 I was wide awake, but when the alarm went off at 6:30 I was so in the middle of enjoying sleep. I got up about 6:45 and got started. Things went well at the GT, although I was there a bit longer than expected. I felt like the world was going to explode on me when I got to the office around 11. I had emails to deal with and phone calls coming in faster than I could deal with them. I got through it though and actually saw the truck half loaded when i left at 5:30, so I was feeling pretty good. I was afraid the boys were going to be there late prepping and loading and then were going to have to face a long day tomorrow. I hope they are all safely situated in bed enjoying some good sleep.

We had a good Sunday school dinner meeting tonight. It was just Stephanie, Chris, myself and the Rodriguez’s. Stephanie is done teaching now since she will be busy the next couple Sundays. It’s sad, but I’m sure she deserves a bit of a break. I’m anxious to get to hear more from Chris though before he leaves. I ended up staying at the Rodriguez’s until about 9:30 tonight talking with Brother & Sister Rodriguez and the Dunagan girls parents. It turns out that he is in a similar line of business (installing/integrating audio/video systems), so we talked business for a while and now it is past my bedtime.

Tired

I so tried to get up this morning when Shelly woke me up at 6:30 this morning, but it just didn’t happen. It was about 7:30 when I finally decided that I needed to get going. I don’t know what is wrong with me – why I have been sleeping so much and why I always feel so tired. I don’t know if I’m not eating right, not getting enough exercise or what, but it is getting kind of old.

Scott & Des came to the office today to check things out. It was kind of weird having them in our office instead of us being there, but it was cool. The day was fairly busy. I tried to get payroll done, but I’m not ready for it yet, so I’ll have to get going on it tomorrow. I finished assembling some par bars tonight before FHE, but then realized that because it was Matthew’s birthday I should probably come home. We had dinner and cake and then I relegated to my lazy activities of facebook and watching TV.

Maybe I need to force myself into a set sleeping schedule again. Maybe I’ll set my alarm for 6:30 tomorrow, although without a good reason to get up it may be kind of hard. I guess step one is setting a goal, right?

Oh, I actually pulled some green out of the closet this morning, trying to be festive. I wore a green shirt and a green jacket! I was also planning on bringing lunch today as part of my new money saving plan for my house fund. I realized somewhere around Reche & 395 that I forgot the lunch, so that wasn’t going so well. I realized somewhere around the 15 and Wichester that I really wasn’t dressed for meetings today since I was wearing a t-shirt! I thought it would be OK, but then I ended up having to go to an upscale winery restaurant where I didn’t think a t-shirt and jeans was going to cut it. Fortunately, I was able to find a CBC polo shirt in the back to change into, but I guess I need to start carrying a change of clothes or at least keep some at the office. Or I guess I could do what I’ve done in previous situations and go shopping.

Anyways, lots to do and I can barely keep my eyes open, so good night!

Sunday

Today was pretty good, but I don’t know what necessarily to report. I totally think I walked by Scott Thompson at the stake center today, but by the time I realized it he was no where to be found, probably back in Sacrament meeting. President Mattson wasn’t there today which was really weird, especially in branch council meeting. It was great hearing from Brother Bloom as our high counselor. Things went well at the Dowden’s, although i was only there for a little bit with the radio net and then an Easter musical tonight.

We played Bingo tonight with facts about President Monson. It was kind of cool to get to learn things about him. I found it funny that we “adults” were having such a hard time with the game when it was made for primary kids. Well, I guess there is lots to do this week, so I’d better start off with a good night’s sleep.

Becky’s Reception

It may be hard to describe what I accomplished today, but it was definitely needed. I got some stuff done around the house and just chilled for most of the day. I even basically forgot my cell phone most of the day and what things I was supposed to be doing, but it was definitely needed after the crazy last few weeks. I hope Nathaniel was more productive today than I was.

Tonight was Becky & James’s wedding reception. It was good and helped me maintain my mellow mood. I enjoyed getting to see Becky and Laura. I spent some time talking with Laura’s parents. It turns out that Scott & Ginger just bought a house in Murrieta right by the stake center, so maybe i will get to see them more often. Becky did a great job with the reception. They had great food and a candy table. I felt bad for not helping her with her music when she asked earlier, but I guess she got it all worked out.

i’ve got a lot to do before church tomorrow morning, so I’d better get to sleep…

Keith Urban

Things have still been crazy in the office. I was swamped both yesterday and today. I was able to make it out last night for Keith Urban (& Carrie Underwood) though. The seats were much better than I was expecting and while they weren’t like front row or anything they really weren’t that bad. We were just off stage right and in the third row of the 4th section, so other than being up high, the view was good. They did some interesting stuff with the lights, and kept moving some of the above stage trusses in and out during songs.

I liked Carrie’s seriously portrait video screens that she used during the show, but Keith’s huge video screen was pretty cool as well. I think Lauren had the time of her life, although is probably deaf now and might not have much of a voice left either.

As we were leaving I was reminded of how much I hate Coors. At Honda we were able to walk to the car in a few minutes and then were on the freeway just a few minutes later. The only waiting was at a red light! Anaheim really has this stuff down, I must admit.

I got home way too late this morning which didn’t help at the office today. We got a lot done though and are making progress. We’ve ordered a lot of stuff and had to scramble to get the shop and shape and get all the new stuff prepped. i guess when it rains it pours!

And now I just realized that tomorrow is Becky’s reception. I don’t think I’m going to make it to the branch’s bikeride and beach trip tomorrow with everything that is going on. I’ll probably be lucky to get to sleep in. I must be up by 10 so I can hit pay some more convenience fees to Ticketmaster for Brad Paisley who is coming to town again soon! I actually already got tickets for one night presale, but I’m going to try for more tomorrow when they actually go on sale.