Tuesday, December 30, 2008

These Things I Have Learnded

So last night I got to thinking that my life's about to change - a lot. Why? you might ask. Well, in 8 short weeks I will finish up what started as a desire to play my trumpet and take meaningless "generals" and what ended up being nearly a decade of 'formal' education. If you knew me as a kid then you'd be floored that I even went to college - let alone graduate school. It definately wasn't in MY plans. I also wasn't going to be an accountant. NO WAY would I do that.

It's all Jodie and I have known throughout our entire lives together. The safe, secure, predictable blanket of Weber State has always been a part of our family. We've never NOT known school. So the thought of being "free" to do whatever we want to do is really something new to me. What do we do? Where do we go? What next? - All tough questions.... any suggestions?

I decided to list the top 10 things I learned from my edumacation. I'll try to put them in order of importance, but the list is subject to change.

10) Signing up for classes as a freshman or sophmore is half the battle; especially when your last name starts with "Y"

9) It's pretty fun to take a test on the proper way to score a game of bowling when sitting next to some guy busting his brains out on a chemistry test. (glad I'm not THAT guy!) Bowling gives you 3 phys. ed. credits and Running gives you 3 phys. ed. credits. Hmmmm. Tough choice.

8) Playing in the marching band takes up a ton of time. I figured that it's the equivalent of being paid aboooouuuut $2.50 an hour. No Shanks.

7) They give you donuts in your first business class to get you hooked. It's all business after that.

6) Working in Excel is not acceptable - because everyone knows that real professionals use calculators on important stuff.

5) Rounding to 6 digits is not only required, it's essential in helping the earth stay in orbit.

4) Professors who teach Statistics are those who majored in it and then looked for jobs - only to realize that all they could do was jot down every meaningless action taken by an athlete during a game, or teach stats to someone else. (no offense to Dan Jones and his totally unstatistical polls)

3) An equation is only as good as it's inputs. Garbage in - Garbage out.

2) The economy in general is based on expectations and perception - not reality. (really)

1) Those who can't 'do', teach!

Oh ya - apparently my blood is purple. Eat THAT science. You thought it was either blue or red, depending on its oxygen content. Wrong you are. Apparently you missed out in PRE-school when you were taught that you could MIX colors. These things I know.

Who up for another degree? Ph.D? J.D.? M.D.? A.E.I.O.U.? And sometimes Y?

Monday, December 22, 2008

Mr. Brightside vs. Mr. Cynicalside

Showing our thankfulness.
"More like showing our thankfulness through gluttony! We get together once a year to eat a ton of food and be thankful. Don't all Americans already eat a ton of food everyday? Are we only thankful once a year? Or do we just have to set aside a time of year to remind ourselves to be thankful?" - Sincerely, Mr. Cynicalside

"Now hold on a second Mr. Cynicalside. Don't be so hard on everyone. It isn't that easy for everyone to get together all the time and Thanksgiving allows us that opportunity. Getting together with good family and enjoying good food is what life is all about. Don't be too quick to judge; true, there are those who aren't thankful for what they have but most people are mindful of what they have and are thankful all year long." Sincerely, Mr. Brightside

The True Spirit of Christmas.
"Every year it's the same thing: we talk about celebrating the true spirit of Christmas in remembering the Saviors birth - and then we over-extend ourselves financially under the ever-increasing pressures of merchants all around us that bank on our addiction to spend. Families that can only spend $50 on their families Christmas presents are pitied by charities who hand out donated cash like it's candy. Every news story is about how much more or less consumers are spending as compared to last year. Companies vie for our children's attention in hopes that they'll badger their parents into buying the latest overpriced toy. We have more talks and songs about the true meaning of Christmas - and then the only question everyone asks on Christmas day is "what did you get for Christmas?" Everything we hear, see, or eat is brought to us by people just in it to make a quick buck around the holidays. Take people like Neil Diamond for instance. Here we have a total Jew who, for a quick buck is willing to sing about Christ being the Savior of the world. Wow! Would any of us be so low as to sing about Christ NOT being the Savior if it meant that we sell a few records? Hypocracy knows no bounds. And don't even get me started on this whole 'Santa' thing! Who does he think he is?" Sincerely, Mr. Cynicalside

"Mr. Cynicalside, I think you're taking this whole commercialization thing way out of proportion. True, there are those who overspend year after year and who focus on getting the latest and greatest, but they are the exception more than the rule. From my perspective, most people are very giving and generous around the holidays because they feel an extra sense of kinship not found at other times during the year. Music, movies, food... they all bring us together and help us celebrate what matters most in life. Don't worry too much about the commercial side of Christmas and just enjoy those things that matter most in life." Sincerely Mr. Brightside

Happy New Year!
"Every year people think that some magical button will be pressed on January 1st that will somehow supplement their willpower and transform them into the most efficient, time saving, consistently helpful, always kind, and ever-knowledgeable person. Maybe it's the whole staying up till midnight thing that does it to people. Then these people walk around the first 2 weeks of every year in denial - wondering why they just can't seem to stay on their grapefruit diet or run the 3 miles a day like they had planned. People need to get a life and realize that a new day starts every 24 hours - not every 365 days. I can't wait till late January when everything gets back to normal. Everything that is, except all those pesky credit card bills that help us all remember the true spirit of Christmas." Sincerely, Mr. Cynicalside

"Mr. Cynicalside, altough I agree that there are many people who love putting off till tomorrow that which should be done today - there are those who consistenly try to make today better than yesterday. Changing habits isn't easy. We need all the encouragement we can get. Every year we get a fresh start and encouragement from everyone around us. So I couldn't think of a better time to rekindle those desires to change our lives for the better." Sincerely, Mr. Brightside

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Super Star!

So, tomorrow is my work's Christmas party. It's a fun time of year, when we get to mingle and enjoy each others company while our spouses look on and wonder who the heck they married.  A lot of bonding goes on at these parties.  Click's are formed. Alliances created. Tis the season!

This year the "white elephant" is not really a white elephant.  They're calling it a "gift exchange."  In other words - bring something you wouldn't mind taking home.  I'm totally cool with that.  Just as long as somebody do
esn't try and pawn off garage junk.  I decided to go all out this year - ya know, actually put some thought into my gifts.  We bought a box of oranges and a hand juicer.  Not too shabby, I thought. I'd love to take it home.  

I bet you're asking yourself - why the heck would a box of oranges make Mike a Super Star? They wouldn't - but THIS would!

That's right. It took a bit of shopping, but I managed to find a mug with a picture of my mug! Love it. LOVE. IT.

It came as part of a set.

 Sorry - I bought the last one. I guess you'll have to come to my party tomorrow and see if you're lucky enough to walk away with these bad boys.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Kalli Bug

This morning Kalli drew a picture for Jodie (I'd say it was for ME but Jodie will read this :-)  Kalli said that this is a picture of "mom as a baby and then she grows up and here she is in the sunshine"

May I point out (yes you may) that Kalli even went to the trouble to draw a PUPIL and an IRIS for each eye - holy smokin' cows, Batman!  I don't think I figured that part out till, um, well, that's not important.

Friday, November 28, 2008

America, The Beautiful - er somethin

Sooooo, does this seem messed up to anyone else? I got this from an AP article entitled "Black Friday shoppers out in force, but cautious."

"Even for the growing number of parents who were limiting their gift buying to just their children this year, financial troubles were forcing them to be stingy.

"I have never slept here before to save a few bucks, but with the economy so bad I thought that even a few dollars helps," said Analita Garcia of Falls Church, Va., who arrived at a local Best Buy store at 7 a.m. Thursday with 10 family members. She bought a 32-inch LCD TV for $400, slashed from $500, along with an iPod and several DVDs.

"This year a lot of people I know won't be getting Christmas presents. I have to pay the rent and bills, and I have two little ones at home to think of," Garcia added."

What The?! Poor Analita. I'm sure she wanted the 42-inch. My heart goes out to this woman struggling to get by on the scraps thrown from the tables of the rich and heartless.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Who needs diapers anyway?!

Today I put Ryan down for his nap the normal way. 15 minutes after I had left the room he was still singing, so I went in to check on him. He had taken off his socks, pants and then diaper. Yep, he was thrilled with himself (you can see by the big smile on his face).
This summer Kalli learned how to ride her bike without training wheels and Meg learned how to pedal a big bike with training wheels. We had lots of fun rides together. Last Saturday we took Mike on our favorite ride, the Lagoon trail. We packed a picnic for us and some rotten bread for the ducks. These are the days when we feel real joy. Families are so great!

Friday, November 14, 2008


So there's been a lot of talk lately about Barack Obama and this historic election.
  • People won't vote for him just because he's black (racist)
  • People will vote for him just because he's black (equally racist)
  • People say they won't vote for him just because he's black (and then vote for him in the privacy of their own booth)
  • People say they will vote for him and then don't (in the privacy of their own booth) - because he's black.

Remind me again what the critical issues were in this election?

I guess I just don't "get it" - I've been fortunate enough to grow up around pretty cool people. I wasn't raised to look at someone's race as a determining factor as to what that person will be like. Bottom line - there's a lot of lazy/industrious/crazy/stupid/smart black's (african-american), white's (I prefer swedish-american), asians, latino's, etc...

I hope President (elect) Obama does a great job - and wish him all the best. Just don't raise taxes on ammo - that's all I ask.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Big 1!

Ryan's 1 year old today! He's all growed up. Its been an amazing year with him. He went from a little bundle that was fun to just cuddle, to a curious little man that is fun to play with and then cuddle when he gets tired. But soon the cuddling will stop. And that's where it gets kind of depressing. Does he really have to grow up?

Lately he's taken an afinity to basketball, football, big screen televisions, and grunting (well, it's more like "hoo hoo" instead of, um, [insert grunting sound here]) so it's not totally depressing to see him grow up.

Although I have to say that it's nice to know that, no matter how big he gets, he's still my little man.

Monday, October 13, 2008

How Does Your Portfolio Look?

So, here I am studying economics and I say to myself, "self, aside from semi-understanding the current global economic crisis that is now upon us, there's GOT to be some real-world application to all this stuff I'm learning." Welp. I think I found a pretty cool correllation. You see, it's the theory of expectations. If the market THINKS that the price of something will go up, they buy it - which increases demand for that item which then increases the price. Vwalla! They thought the price would go up... and it did. Do you see where I'm going with this yet?! If you think that your kids will never amount to anything - they won't. Think about it. I was lucky enough to have parents that purchased lots and lots of stock in Mike Incorporated when I went public about 28 years ago. They haven't sold any of it. They're in it for the long term. No day-traders in this business!

As a dad, I'm happy to say that my portfolio has never looked better.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Pumpkin Fun!

Happy Halloween!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Flash From The Past

You ever wonder what our kids will think of the way we dress right now and think to themselves, "What were they thinking?!" I know I've thought that same thing a time or two. about my parents. Welp. It's about time I tried to put myself in their shoes and see what it's like to be a handsome devil from 1980. Whadaya think?

What a catch. If I do say so myself. Or as Jodie would say, "Ow OWWW!!"

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

What Could Be Better?!

Do you remember those days as a child when you held a tasty snack in one hand and another tasty snack in the other hand? And the only thing better than two hands full of yummy food would be to combine them for the ultimate taste sensation? Now, let me clarify here; these aren't things like raisins and chocolate, or peanut butter and apples. No way. This would be stuff like... say... Peanut butter and grapes..... on top of raisin bread.

Doesn't that look AWEsome?! Kalli surprised us with this little gem. It's like a little grape Stone Henge on bread.

That looks like one tasty grape doohickie.

Maybe I'll try me one of them things. I'll put it on my bucket list, right next to raiding an ant hill.
At least she left off the parmesan cheese.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Where'd They Go?

The other morning I woke up and couldn't find anything in the kitchen. Were Kalli and Meg up to their tricks again? Did they decide that their plastic kitchen stuff wasn't cutting it anymore? Sure seemed like it. Bowls, forks, plates, spoons, cups - "it all gone," as they would say in Singapore.

This is right where they all go - right on that cloth!

I swear I put em on the counter. That's where they ALWAYS are! If it ain't in the drawer, they be on the counter. And if they ain't on the counter - then Kal and Meg have commandeered them for a good pupose, I'm sure.

There's that empty cloth again.

Then I remembered.....
That's RIGHT! It only took us 6 years of marriage - but we got ourselves a DISHWASHER! The sippy cups were even cleaned to Megan's approval. (did you all catch Kalli's outfit? LOVE... IT)

Monday, May 19, 2008

You're It!

Well well well. I've been tagged. It's about time!

1. Pick up the nearest book.
2. Open to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people and post a comment to the person who tagged you once you've posted your three sentences.

"A study conducted by Industrial Engineer, a professional magazine, indicated that the average interruption sustained by a manager was only six to nine minutes. Amazingly, the study also revealed that the average time it took such managers to recover from such interruptions was anywhere from 3 to 23 minutes. So, if the average interruption is 6 to 9 minutes with a midpoint of 7.5 minutes, and the average recovery time is 3 to 23 minutes, with a midpoint of 13 minutes, that means that the typical interruption results in 20.5 minutes of lost work."

That means it only takes a few posts to really trash that hour of work I do every day. Bummer

What if I don't know five people to tag?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


"I didn't know you were gona be giving me electric shocks!" Or, at least that's what I SHOULD have said to the 'nurse' lady at the voodo doctors "clinic." You see, they have these little paddles (not like the ones from pre-school when you've been bad, but sorta) and these little paddles are plugged into the WALL. Yes. The Wall. Now, WHY would something need to be plugged into the wall? I'll tell you why - so it can SHOCK me. That's why.

As I waltzed into the "therapy" room I had no idea of what was awaiting me. I laid down on the massaging table (a good sign) and rested my head on the little head rest thingy covered with non-germy paper stuff (you know what I'm talking about). I can feel the warmth of the freshly sanitized paddles being placed all over by back. They had them all over. (did I mention it was warm?) Then came the ice. ICE? Why ice? I like warm - not ice. Oh well... Now came the fun part... "just tell me 'when' " said the nurse lady. "When?!" I said. "oh ya, tell me when it gets too painful." Wha?!? I came to these people out of the naieveness of my heart and here they are doing things that will cause me pain? Hmmmm

Suddenly I felt my arms doing things that I had not previously instructed them to do. Whooom to the right, and twitch to the left. "Who's doing this?" I thought to myself. That's when I realized that I forgot to say "when" and had to have the nurse back off on the juice a little. She then ramped up my lower back in the same fashion and said "OK, now just relax" and left me in the room ALL BY MYSELF, hooked up to the shocker machine. It wasn't too bad actually. I kind of enjoyed that 12 minutes of involuntary movement as I pondered the complexities of the universe and wondered how bad the red mark on my face would be from laying down face first.

That was last week

I went in this morning - a pro in the ways of the voodoo witchery. I knew what to expect and I was ready for it. She hooked me up - I said "when" and we were off. A few minutes into the 'therapy' I got curious. I usually get curious - just not with things that are currently plugged into the wall. I decided to gently lift one of these little paddles off my back 'just to see what would happen.' YeeeeeAAwwwww! Holy sweet mother. That's when the little thing arced a shock to that tender skin at the bottom of my back right before I quickly placed it firmly on my skin. After that little "gem" of an experience I wondered why I put it right back on me if it was shocking me. Is it like when you have your hands wrapped around a snake's head and you don't want to let go because it'll just bite you? I hate it when I find myself with a snake in my hands.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Voodoo.... Whoodoo?

So, yesterday I broke down and decided to visit the local witch/voodoo doctor. Some people call them "chiropractors." I've never seen one of these people in their 'element' so I thought I'd give it a shot. Maybe it'd be like Animal Planet. Besides, that's what you do when you hit your "out of pocket maximum" and really really want an x-ray of your spinal column, right? Right?!

Well, about 6 x-rays later and a couple visits, I'm well entrenched into their 'pay a co-pay everytime we say "hello" ' scheme. I can see where this is going already. I'm trying to convince Jodie to get an in-house massage therapist, but she hasn't gone for it yet. Just trying to be economical. I'll keep you posted.

So we had a nice visit this morning in front of the x-ray thing that holds up the x-ray things. Those things are nice and bright, but not too bright. Fascinating stuff, really. Anyway, this is where the gibberish began. I was told that my 아이들이 친구 사촌 개 had an 작업 and that it would take lots of $$내 영혼을 in order for it to be fixed. Or something like that. I think I understood that last part a little better than the first bit. Apparently the bones in my neck aren't supposed to look like an "S." Who knew?! I thought S's were stylish. WAY better than a lame C shape like other boring peeps.

So, we're going to give this guy a shot and see where the chips fall, or at least where the vertebrae lie. Is that how you spell that? Crazy.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

The Hunt

This morning, I gathered my family into the minivan and set off on a journey that would take us to fields of wonder, awe, and ultimately to a pack of wild, ferocious, chicks. It's Easter, and as is the custom in many parts of the land we participated in an egg "hunt," or two egg hunts to be exact. We braved the 40 degree weather and waited in Founders Park for 20 minutes till the nice policeman blew his horn, beginning the most intense 30 seconds of most childrens lives. Vast whords of children swarmed the "no-zone" as parents shouted instructions: "Kick him in the legs!," "Push her over and take the booty!" OK, it wasn't THAT bad, but it sure seemed like it. I actually heard a mom instruct her husband to continue 'coaching' their son while she looked for a better spot. It was pretty sureal.

Not having coached my children in the ways of egg poaching, we were left behind when the "wall of destruction" decended on the field of eggs. Luckily the kiddies ran right by a few eggs, which allowed my kiddies to swipe 'em up and not leave empty handed. After 20 seconds it was all over. The fields were stripped like a turkey on Thanksgiving. There wasn't anything left - except grass, of course. We decided that we needed more than just a few eggs, so we headed off to Woods Cross.

At Woods Cross Elementary they had another egg 'brawl' but this time the people in charge tried to make it a little more fair. They had the little kids go first and told them to get 3 eggs, then come back to their parents. Some kids (and their parents) had a tough time counting to 3 - and only to 3. We got our 3 eggs and then headed into the gym to get stickers, bags, and tatoos (stickers!). The girls had an awesome time, and so did mom and dad. We finished off the morning by going to see the chickies. At least there wer no crazy parents there. :-) We LOVE chickies!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Give Me A Break

So yesterday I read an article in the newspaper about a lady who was arrested for leaving her child in the car. "Not another one of these ladies" I thought. But I kept reading. She has 3 children (the sympathy should start there) and the older 2 kids wanted to donate their money to the Salvation Army. As they were driving to the store the littlest of the bunch, just 2 years old, fell asleep in her car seat. Because it was sleeting outside, the mom decided that it would be OK to park the car, lock the car, ALARM the car and walk the 30 feet to the kettle with her older kids, leaving the 2 year old in the car. On her way back to the car she got arrested from a loser cop on charges of child abandonment.

Holy Crap!

She now faces an entire year in prison and a $2,500 fine if convicted. Is this how our tax dollars are spent everyday?!

Sorry, not a funny post - just had to get it off my mind. Put the people in prison who squeeze baby's to death and dumb stuff like that. Put em in a hole. Throw away any keys or ladders. Just don't imprison the mother of 3 who isn't any different than any mother out there.

30 FEET?!!!?

More funny posts to follow!

Friday, February 15, 2008

No Contest

So, this morning I found myself reading the enchanting story of a young lady who sacrifices her freedom so her over-curious father can get lost in the woods on his way home only to find himself a candidate for the luny-bin while his daughter is held hostage by a crazed human-animal thing. Other people know this little gem as Beauty and the Beast.

This storytime was a special request from my eldest daughter who normally is transfixed when a book is being read. All was going well - we were cuddled on the comfy couch in Ryan's room, wrapped in blankets. Nothing could disturb this little slice of heaven we'd created. Then, Kal and Meg heard the siren sound of "who wants a gumball?!" That was the end of story time.

Don't mess with a gumball. You just won't win.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

My Little Hero

I've always known that my little girl was 3 going on 17, but the last few days have just solidified my feelings. Late Sunday night my sweetie and I decided that it'd be best if we took our Kalli bug to the ER because of some breathing problems. We showed up and got shuffled right to the front of the line, infront of all those suckers waiting to get in! Suckers! ?? Doh!

Kalli then proceded to go through a night full of IV's, X-Rays, creepy doctors and their creepy questions about how old you are and if you're allergic to anything, vacuum tubes in her nose, and that stinkin oxygen tube that has to stay right near the tickly part of your nose. She was amazing.

When they checked us in to the hospital they gave her a stuffed moose, and her very own pink blanket. This place is like the Ritz Carlton! Room service, free stuff, movies, people come to see you when you push the enticing orange button (the very enticing orange button) "No, we're fine, just seeing if this orange button still works. Yup, still works!"

When I thought of writing this blog I debated on what the subject matter should be about. I could have entitled it "Disneyland or the ER - we choose the fun one" or "there goes our treadmill" or "I'll get my computer sometime, right?!" or "Being seperated from your wife and kids really stinks" or "Is this what you call a french fry?!" or "I'll have another root beer slushy, please." But, above all the feelings I've had in the last couple days, the one that stands out far and obove anything else is how grown up my little girl is, and how proud I am of her.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

It's That Season Again

So, here I sit. Once again I find myself at the beginning of another year, making promises to myself that I'll never keep, cleaning up the holiday trinkets, and sending out thousands of 1099's to all the wonderful companies we've paid more than $600 during the fiscal year 2007. Why does the IRS do this to us?! I'm convinced that it's all Bush's fault. It's always his fault. Dang Bush.

After about an hour of tearing off "Detach Before Mailing" stubs on about 1,000 sheets of paper, I couldn't help but think "This is why I'm getting my MBA, so I don't have to do stuff like this."

Then I realized that I thought the EXACT same thing about my job duties when I was studying for my Bachelors. I'm sure it'll be different. Right? RIGHT?!?!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Be Yourself

The other day I was in a meeting at work where a high-powered Harvard MBA was charging us too much to bless us with his presence. During this blessed 3 hours of my life I let my mind wander a little and think about all the business greats in the world. I thought of how cool it would be to have the experiences that Sir Richard Branson has had, or Steve Jobs, or even Bill Gates (even though he reall messed up with Vista - In my opinion). I have to admit I was feeling a bit envious of all the experiences they've had throughout their lives. Pretty neat stuff.

Then I realized that today is just the beginning. I need to be myself. I may not have the same experiences of these business greats, but I have a LONG existence ahead of me and I can make anything I want of it. So, I guess the moral of my experience is - Be yourself, even if being yourself means you wear an outfit that should be illegal, like this guy....

Just Average

Every once in a while I get to feeling that the only time I've ever been 'above average' was in Jr. High, when I looked myself up on the Body Mass index charts. Those were days never to be forgotten, unfortunately.

I suppose it's not uncommon to feel that way sometimes - it's just not good to feel that way ALL the time.

So, next time you're feeling a bit down - like nothing is going how you planned it - just remember that tomorrow is another day. And be glad you aren't this mouse.