Monday, July 29, 2013

Here's What I Think: Brock's Weekly

Here's What I Think: Brock's Weekly: Some of you may know that my hubby writes a weeky email that captures our daily life adventures in a most amusing way.  I came across this o...

Brock's Weekly

Some of you may know that my hubby writes a weeky email that captures our daily life adventures in a most amusing way.  I came across this one again, and laughed so hard I had to share it.  Enjoy!

August 11, 2008
Dearly Beloved:
I have composed what is supposed to be a humorous tale, in Biblical prose, about our journey from Utah to Las Cruces, and am attaching it in lieu of my weekly email. The story is 'mostly true' like all my emails, but generally portrays Angie inaccurately, which if you haven't figured it out yet often happens in my emails and is kind of an inside joke. Anyway, the story is about five or six pages long. I have cut and pasted it below, in case there is problem opening the file, but it probably will be easier to read it as a Word document.
Chapter 1
In the land of the Virginians, at the residence of the government fathers, I, Brock, saw that it was needful for me to obtain another place of residence;
2  And, finding there was greater opportunity and money and prestige for me, I sought for a judicial clerkship and the right whereunto I should be declared a real attorney and administer in the office thereof; having been myself a student of the law, desiring also to be one who possessed great amounts of money and to possess a greater possibility of owning a home and paying off my student loans, which were great, and being a father of many children, and desiring to house and feed them, I moved to Las Cruces and sought my appointment unto a judicial clerkship, holding the rights belonging to the lawyers. It was conferred upon me from the Honorable Robert C. Brack and came down from the United States District Court of New Mexico.
3  And the woman said: Let us go down from the home of your father. And we went down, having left our possessions and precious things, taking nothing with us save it fit in the minivan or the green car, having sold or given away all that we possessed.
4  And it came to pass that we departed into the wilderness. And behold the children were silent as they watched movies on the portable DVD player; And I, being content, said unto the woman: Behold, this is the greatest purchase I have ever made.
5  And the woman looked up from her book and said: Though my mind be consumed with stories of romantic vampires and werewolves, yet, I confess that thou art full of wisdom and foresight and have rugged good looks.
6  And it came to pass that after many movies that my eldest child began to murmur against me and said: Are we there yet.
7  And I, knowing that the children were restless from much traveling, took my family to the place of many arches. And we beheld the arches that they were good and hiked around and took many pictures.
8 But behold, much PowerAde did we drink, and our journeying was slow, for many stops did we make.
9  And we came down by the borders, near the Four Corners, and I, being confused, missed the turn off; And the woman murmured against me and caused my children that they should murmur against me also.
10 But I, being a stiff-necked man, would not ask for directions, but continued southward upon unknown roads.
11  And it came to pass that after many hours darkness fell upon the land, and sharp lightning filled the heavens, and rain and strong winds buffeted the minivan;
12 And there was much weeping and wailing in the minivan; And the woman and her children murmured against me continually.
13  But the wilderness was uninhabited inasmuch as there was no sign of civilization anywhere; 
14  And behold, even in inhabited regions we were unable to find a place to lay our heads, for there was not room for us in the inns.
15  And it came to pass that after many hours we came upon a motel with vacancy;
16  But the woman slept not; For behold, the child of her bosom clave unto her and made a great commotion insomuch as the woman shed many tears.
17  And the evening and the morning were the first day.
Chapter 2
And it came to pass that after a few hours my eldest son said unto himself: I will arise and go unto my father that peradventure we may arrive at our new apartment early enough that I may go swimming.
2  And behold, the child said unto his father: Arise and shine forth; For why sleepest thou? Let us be up and going while it is called today; Let us go forward and not backward, courage father and on to Las Cruces.
3  And it came to pass that I arose and girded up my loins and gathered my sons for another day of driving; But behold, I found the woman and her daughter sleeping for sorrow,
4  And I said unto them: Why sleep ye? Rise and pray lest ye enter into temptation. And the woman and her daughter arose and took up their pillows and walked to breakfast.
5  And I said unto the woman: This night will I lie with thee that thou mightest conceive in thy womb and bring forth a child to bless and comfort thee when thou art old and withered;
6  But behold, the woman, being much afflicted from lack of sleep, said unto me: Not so my lord, but let us wait a little season; For behold, thy youngest son cleavest unto me continually insomuch that I sleep not neither am I able to put him down whilst the sun yet shineth in the heavens.
7  And I, beholding the woman, had compassion on her and said: Woman why weepest thou? Be comforted and know that thy womb shall yet remain barren for a little season.  
8  And it came to pass after a couple of hours we came unto the Land of Enchantment. And I beheld that the land was empty and desolate; But the woman said unto me: Behold, the land is greener than I expected.
9  And I, beholding the sage brush and the cacti that they were green, said unto the woman: Behold, the land is lush and full of vegetation, a veritable Garden of Eden, flowing with milk and honey.
10  But the woman took offense and said: Thou art cursed above all the cattle of the field, on thy belly shalt thou grovel and my feet thou shalt rub, for a pig thou art and in the dog house shalt thou remain.
11  And I stopped the car and the woman bought her children treats to help them endure the long journeying; And behold, the children rose up and praised their mother saying: Blessed art thou! Thou hast heard our pleadings and filled us with good things. For thy merciful kindness is great toward us. But behold, the treats did not cause the children to stop whining. And thus we see the unsteadiness and instability of the children of Brock.
12  And it came to pass that after many movies we arrived at the land of Las Cruces; And the woman and her children repented of their murmurings and sang a song of thanksgiving unto their father: Blessed art thou our father, for thou art good; A shield and a fortress thou art to us; Thou hast guided us through a vast and barren wasteland; While we slept, a tempest and a storm thou didst endure; Though we murmured and said, thou knowest not the way; yet thou wast faithful and guided us to a new land which, though it be desolate, we shall call our home. The tongue of this land is strange to us; But behold, we will praise thy name in Spanglish all the day of our lives.  
13  And it came to pass that the woman and her children beheld the apartment complex that it was good; And behold, they praised their father again with song.
14  But it came to pass that when the woman beheld the apartment, that it was desolate and without furniture, she was sorrowful and wept.
15  But behold, I beheld our bank account, that it was not empty, and said unto the her: Woman, why hast thy countenance fallen? Behold our bank account that it is not empty; For just a little moment shalt thou dwell in this desolate apartment; For I say unto thee that soon it shall be filled with the good things of the earth. But first, fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink, and bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand.
16  And the woman said unto me: I have not a cake, but a handful of vanilla wafers, and a little juice in a box; And, behold, I am about to give it to my youngest son, that we may eat it and take a nap, lest I die of exhaustion.
17  And I said unto her: Fear not, go and do as thou hast said; but give me one vanilla wafer first and let me take a drink from the juice box and after give the remainder to thy child. For, as I live, the box of vanilla wafers shall not waste, neither shall the juice box fail, before I have returned with food for thy refrigerator. And, because of thy faithfulness, thou shalt sleep on a bed this night, and be blessed in a year from now with the riches of the earth; For she that is married to an attorney is rich indeed.
18  And I departed and returned with lamps; And the woman beheld the lamps that they were just okay, and said unto me: Why didst thou not get me a bed neither didst thou gather meat for thy offspring?
19  And I said unto the woman: Target beguiled me, and I got lamps instead. Behold they were only $8.99. If thou hast need of nourishment, go up to the Albertsons and gather it thyself.
20  And the woman was wroth and went up to the Albertsons and gathered much groceries.
21  And it came to pass that after the woman had returned, I searched diligently on Craigslist to find furniture.
22  But behold, the furniture selection was sparse, and I went unto a New Mexico State University student and purchased an old metal desk, and a 1970s-looking entertainment center, and a sleep number bed; And I said unto my soul: Soul, thou hast done a mighty work this day, and thou shalt be praise by thy wife and thy children.
23 But it came to pass that when the woman beheld the desk, she scoffed, and said unto me: A fool thou art, and Craigslist shalt thou no longer use, For junk thou hast purchased, and to the dumpster shall it be returned.
25 And Brock wept.
24  But it came to pass that the woman beheld the bed that I had purchased that it was okay, and she looked with kindness upon her husband, and I was comforted.
25  And the evening and the morning were the second day.
Chapter 3
And it came to pass that on the morning of the third day, I, Brock, arose refreshed, having slept on a sleep number bed.
2  And I looked upon the apartment and perceived that it still was without furniture.
3  And now behold, I, wishing to redeem myself in the eyes of the woman, went unto Craigslist and searched for furniture in the distant land of El Paso;
4  And it came to pass that I found a family who was moving to Japan, and I contacted the family and purchased their table and chairs.
5  And the woman beheld the table and chairs that they were very good and the craftsmanship thereof was exceedingly fine, like nothing the woman had ever owned before.
6  And the woman said unto me: When thou didst buy an old rusty desk my heart failed me, and I doubted in my heart whether it was right that I had left my possessions in the land of the Virginians; But behold, I have slept soundly on a sleep number bed which thou didst purchase for $130; And behold, the 1970s-style entertainment center is a little unseemly but adequately fills the measure of its creation; And verily, verily I say unto thee that the table and chairs that thou hast purchased are exceedingly fine, and I now behold that thou art full of wisdom and foresight and have rugged good looks; For though thou didst waste $50 on a rusty old desk, which I commanded thee to throw away in the dumpster, yet thou hast redeemed thyself though the righteousness of thy purchases.
7  And I, being redeemed in the eyes of the woman, was filled with joy and rejoicing.
8  Now there is by the complex manager’s office a pool, which is called in the Spanglish tongue the Quail-Ridge-Apartment-Complex-Swimming-Pool-Man, having many palm trees.
9  In it swims almost nobody; For behold, among the residents of the Quail Ridge Apartment complex are all manner of old and impotent folk, of elderly, retired, withered, apparently filled with all manner of water related anxieties, having little inclination for swimming in the water.
10  And a certain boy was there, which had a desire to swim in the pool for at least thirty and eight hours.
11  When I saw the boy, and knew that he had been now a long time waiting, I said unto him: Matthew, wilt thou go swimming.
12  And the boy answered: Father, I have no man, to take me to the pool; For thou and they wife have been busy and unable to put me into the water.
13  And I said unto the boy: Rise, take up thy swimming toys, and walk with me to the pool. And his brother and sister and mother followed and there was much joy and rejoicing at the pool.
14  And the evening and the morning were the third day.
Chapter 4
And it came to pass on the fourth day that I, Brock, looked upon my children; And beheld that the hair of my youngest child and of my eldest had turned green, for verily there is much chlorine in the water.
2 And it came to pass that the woman, beheld the greenness of their hair, that it was like unto the lush landscape of Las Cruces; And behold, the woman shaved the head of her youngest son, that he became bald, and trimmed the hair of her only daughter, that she might have slightly shorter green hair; And it came to pass that the woman grieved as the hairs of heads of her children fell to the ground.
3  And I, Brock, beheld that the apartment, that it still felt barren and unorganized;
4  And I commanded the woman to put down her books and straighten up the apartment.
5  And it came to pass that the woman ignored me.
6 And by and by I contacted the family moving to Japan and made an offer on an exceedingly fine desk; And it came to pass that the offer was accepted; And the woman beheld my purchase and was exceedingly glad.
7  And now behold, the bank account was almost empty, and the apartment still lacked a sofa. And it came to pass that the woman said unto me: Purchase a futon, I pray thee, that when Leta or thy parents visits they might have place to lay their heads.
8  And I went down and purchased a futon, and it was red, like unto the futon we had when we lived in North Carolina; But behold, the new futon was of exceedingly fine craftsmanship, not being purchased from Walmart.
9  And the woman beheld the futon that it was good; And I looked upon the apartment that it had turned out pretty well.
10  And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.
Chapter 5
Now the fifth day was the first day of the week, which is treated like the seventh day, being the Sabbath.
2  And behold I, Brock, rested and got carried away writing a story about our journeying in the wilderness and our settlement in the Land of Enchantment.
3  And it came to pass that the woman read the story and beheld that it was not completely accurate and had portions that were not in good taste among polite society;
4 And it came to pass that the woman censored portions of the story and said unto me: Send, I pray thee, thy story to our family and friends in thy weekly email that they may know of our adventures; For verily, verily I say unto thee, thy story is funny and made me laugh; And though thou hast portrayed me inaccurately and kept a couple of things in the story that will embarrass me, yet I will endure it, that thou mightest have acclaim and honor in the eyes of our family and friends.
5 And it came to pass that I, Brock, sent the story in my weekly email and prepared for any responses on the morrow;
6  And the evening and the morning were the fifth day, which is technically the first day, but is treated like the seventh day.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Here's What I Think: Daddy/child camp out

Here's What I Think: Daddy/child camp out: This last Friday night, my hubby took our four kids camping with our ward.  I was left home alone not knowing what to do with myself.  I dec...

Daddy/child camp out

This last Friday night, my hubby took our four kids camping with our ward.  I was left home alone not knowing what to do with myself.  I decided I  would watch a chick flick, so I quickly put in Pride and Prejudice, the Keira Knightly version (I know, I know, it should have been the BBC version, but I wanted to do something else that night other than watch a movie, so I decided on 2 hours versus 6.) 

I fell in love with Pride and Prejudice all over again.  As I watched the credits and saw Jane Austen's name come up, I felt such a great love for her as a writer.  I was so proud of her for writing such incredible love stories that have endured for many generations, and inspired so many other writers, movies, etc., to believe in falling in love, and how wonderful and worth it it is.  I have always wanted to be a writer, and I can only hope and dream that I could have some small kind of impact on the world of reading and writing, by creating a world where falling in love is magical.  Needless to say, my girls night was going well.

After the movie I put my head phones in and listened to a book as I cleaned my entire house.  Cleaning has never been so fun and satisfying.  I was able to clean for three hours without any interruptions, moving from one room to the next, all the while listening to a great story.  I am not one for loving cleaning my house, but I can honestly say that it was very rejuvenating.  I was liking the daddy/child camp out more and more.

The next morning I ran in our stake's 5k Mormon Pioneer fun run.  I had a great run and it was fun to celebrate this special holiday in this way.  I knew the kids were still not home, so I was able to come home and shower uninterrupted, and even do some laundry.  I love my family and I love having them around, but I have decided that every once in a while it's really nice to be alone and have some "me" time and actually be productive at the same time.  I highly encourage that all families have a daddy/child camp out.  Until next time!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Boundless, by Cynthia Hand

What can I say but,  Bravo! Congratulations!  Para Bens!  Well done, Ms. Cynthia Hand!  It is so fun to read the last book in a series and be so utterly satisfied with every little, tiny detail of the story.  I loved what Cynthia Hand did with this book.
It was so well written, with every detail and chapter flowing so nicely.  I loved the pacing of every part. I was never bored or wishing the story would pick up.  A perfect attention keeper for me.
I laughed out loud each time Clara crossed and ended up in Tucker's barn.  I loved the sweet symbolism behind it.  I loved the laugh out loud jokes Clara would say to lighten the serious gloom and doom mood.  Especially loved the Star Wars joke.
I loved the relationship developments with Clara, Christian and  Angela, and the gentle way that their friendship/love was handled.  It's so fun to read a book where an author has such a clear understanding of human nature with all it's many varied ups and downs, and is able to translate that into their characters in such a careful, believable manner.
I loved the interactions with Samjeeza.  I found them insightful and I loved that Clara was such a admirable heroine, one that you want to be like.  I loved her compassion for all of the angels and humans, and her ability to feel their hope and sorrow and use those feelings for the good of others, including the angels themselves.
And most especially, I loved how Ms. Hand treated Tucker and Clara's relationship.  I felt uplifted my their sweet, pure love for each other.  Never once did I feel uncomfortable or question the purity of their relationship.  I so appreciate that, and it makes it so easy to cheer on something that you want to share with your reading buddies.  Thank you so much!
My only regret about reading this book, is that it took me so long to get to it.  I wish I had read it when it first came out, as I feel like I am the last person to get on the boat in finishing this series. Thanks again Cynthia for making reading fun and uplifting!  Can't wait to see what you do next. 

Friday, July 5, 2013

Wasatch Back, reading, and more!

So life has been crazy the last couple of weeks.  I drove the kids to Utah so I could run in Utah's Ragnar relay series, Wasatch Back.  After having run once and trained twice for the DC Ragnar, I thought I would totally be fine with Wasatch Back.  Needless to say, it was a little more challenging than DC.  I had a great first run as runner 9, having a personal best run of 6 min. and 45 sec. miles for my 5k, then by midnight run took place, and since it was 11.6 miles, I wasn't so fast. I was cold, and got hypothermia, vomited, had slurred speech, and incoherent conversations.  When I finally got warm again, but still felt horrible, I really didn't care if I ever ran again.  But then I had my last run up Gaurdman's pass, of course this was after 10 hours of slowly getting better.  Okay, so it really wasn't a run, more like an extremely challenging speed walk straight up hill.  In the end, I loved the whole experience, especially since I got to spend so much time with family and friends laughing, crying, and trying to get sleep, (which didn't happen).

I read a lot of books on my trip, and here's a couple I want to shout about.  The first that I loved is called "Amethyst" by Heather Bowhay.  This book is a totally fun urban fastasy, with bits of paranormal action, and lots of fun romantic tension.  I just finished the second book called "Linked", and it did not disappoint.  It's fun to find new authors that are just awesome to read and take you on a fun journey.  Heather's 3rd book in the series comes out un August, and I will be for sure reading and writing about it.

I also read a fun mystery/sci-fi book called "Disemblance", by Shanae Branham.  It was very well written and had me on the edge of my car seat (literally) on the drive home from Utah.  I loved her writing and characters. 

The fourth of July was fun.  It started bright and early as I ran an 8k.  I have to admit I felt a little sluggish, and I think it had to do with the fact that my body was screaming, "what do you think your doing?  You need to still recover from Ragnar!!!"  I had fun, but like I said, felt sluggish and never really got into my running groove.
We had a fun breakfast at church and the kids paraded around the ward building on their bikes.  We spend the rest of the day lazing around, swimming with friends, eating way too much home made carmel popcorn, ending the night watching the fireworks from the roof of my hubby's office building.  After living in DC for a while, I wasn't expecting the fireworks to be that good in Las Cruces.  But I must say that this smallish town of 100,000 people's fireworks did not disappoint.  Well done!

June was crazy, but July has stared of well, and I live in a great country with my wonderful family and friends.  Life is good!