Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Ember's Wedding

My BYU cross country teammate got married yesterday. I thought she looked happy at the bridal shower but, as you can see, she's smiling so big you can just about see her molars (and his) in almost every picture.



Another BYU teammate came out for the wedding: MOONER! She was my long-time roommate along with being a teammate; I hadn't seen her since I went to Utah for her wedding two years ago.



Aren't they so cute?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Hello Digital Cameras (Reprise)

So if you haven't checked in the past few days, here's an update. I posted a Top Ten Greatest Moments list in celebration of the one-year mark since I left work at a digital camera review web site. I'm taking the list down - although everything from it was true - because there were a few too many mentions of one person in particular; the person emailed me, apologized, and asked that the post be removed. I'm obliging; it's in the past now, right? Perhaps said person is totally different now? I'd like to think so. And based on her mature response to the post, it might actually be so.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Bruce the Man-Cub

Thanks to a Christmas iTunes gift certificate from Chris and LaTrisha, we downloaded the Jungle Book soundtrack this week and have been hooked ever since. The first time we listened to "The Bare Necessities" Bruce instinctively started scratching his back on the walls like Baloo the Bear.

video video

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Bridal Shower!

One of my friends from college is getting married in a few weeks. Her bridal shower was last night and is the first one I've been to in a long while. I was the only BYU rep in the group: other bridal shower attendees included people from her hometown, from her church congregation, her family, etc. About two-thirds of the group were women who talked about changing her diapers when she was a baby; all those ladies brought dozens of hand towels, slotted spoons, and ceramic bowls. I'd anticipated this, so I wanted to make sure I brought just the right gift. Her hometown friends got her green kitchen items and arranged them into a frog (picture on top). There was some inside joke behind it. Luckily, my gift was one of the last to be opened. Pictured above is her reaction to the card I'd placed inside the box...My friend is a very modest, reserved person. I knew no one else was going to get the traditional bridal shower gift, so I figured it was my duty to get it. Unfortunately I am not one that enjoys shopping for skimpy apparel. I really did spend about a half-hour in the store stressing over which outfit would be just right and wondering if I should just scrap the idea and get flannel pajamas after all. I'm glad I got it. When I was leaving the bridal shower she pulled me aside and thanked me for the gift. She said she went to Victoria's Secret the day before and couldn't bring herself to buy anything. The real cake comes in a few short weeks!

Monday, February 09, 2009

64 Years Ago Today


My grandpa served in the Navy in World War II. He wrote hundreds of love letters to my grandma, who saved all of them. A few years ago my mom compiled the letters into a book. My grandpa wrote almost every day and sometimes even twice a day, but there is a month-long break in the letters between Jan. 9 and Feb. 9 of 1945. That's when my grandfather went home and married my grandma. Here's his first letter to her as a married man.

Feb. 9th, 1945
U.S.S. Iowa 5th Div.
c/o Fleet Post Office
San Francisco, Calif.

My Darling Wife,

I am writing this letter while on watch honey, so don't mind the writing. You see I'm cramped up in a little space here and can't sit up.

There isn't a lot to write about darling, but I love you and that's the important thing. I still haven't had any liberty since I've been back dear, but that doesn't bother me in the least. In fact I don't miss it since I'm married. The only thing I really miss is you honey and believe me I'd give my right arm to see you now.

What have you been doing honey, besides looking beautiful? You know I've got the most beautiful wife in Akron, and that's no lie. In fact the best I've ever seen.

I'm expecting to hear from you possibly today or tomorrow honey, at least I'm hoping. I've got my fingers crossed any ways.

Honey, if I rate liberty on or after the twentieth I'll call you up, so be looking for a call, okay? Hearing your voice will make me feel a little better, and I sure need a little morale, since I came back.

I haven't written to anyone except you since I've been here, so if my sisters should happen by, tell them I'll write when I get time - I've been so busy honey, that it isn't funny. I even have to write to you while on watch or at night.

Honey how do you like married life? I love it, and I told my buddy that. Now I've got him talked into getting married.

Darling, on the train I was asleep and a Shore Patrol came through looking at leave papers. I was half asleep yet and I gave him our marriage certificate (by mistake). He read it to all the boys and now my hand's a little sore from shaking so much.

Well darling, I'm just about out of words, so I guess I'll just have to close. I'm having one of my buddies mail this on the beach so I hope you get them quicker. Tell your mother I said hello, and dear, I love you.

Your Loving Husband,
V.L. Tompkins
5th Div.

P.S. Don't forget the pictures honey!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Bruce at work and play

Bruce got an art easel from Grandma and Grandpa Mars this past Christmas. Just in the past two weeks his vortex scribbles have started to form into somewhat recognizable things. Here he is drawing lantern fish, one of his favorite deep-sea creatures.
Bruce is growing up fast. He is playing less with trains and more with Legos.
It seems like he has a finger in his nose way too often. I'm constantly telling him to get his finger out of his nose. The other day we were in the kitchen and he told me, "I'm going to go to my bedroom so you don't see me pick my nose." What a smart kid.
He talks endlessly now. Sometimes he asks Why this or Why that, but mostly he likes to ask questions that he knows the answer to. What do humpback whales eat? Is that a T-rex? Who is coming over today?

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

The System is Down

No photos with this post; my computer is under construction at the moment. Last night it was in about a dozen pieces and today it was throwing some weird errors so I've surrendered to a laptop.

Here's a random sampling of what's going on in the Bruceosphere.

1. The Super Bowl. I don't really care about the football part of things, but the Super Bowl to me means that avocados are on sale everywhere - even at Whole Foods - and that is a good thing.

2. The Progress Report. Bruce's preschool gave me a two-page report on how Bruce was doing. Here are a few gems: "When Bruce is sitting on a teacher's lap or with a teacher nearby it helps him to focus during circle/story time," "Bruce loves to run and is very fast," "He has shown little interest in art projects or drawing but loves to play with the cars and Legos," "He asks questions during stories and laughs at all the silly parts," and "He prefers to be active and free play but with teacher support he is learning there are times to play and times to be part of the group."

3. Snow and Ice. There was an ice storm last week that dumped a few inches of snow, then rained, then froze. I had to slowly skate myself to the gym the next morning and run on the treadmill. I really dislike treadmills mostly because I like to feel like I'm going somewhere when I run. The treadmill I used tried to alleviate that concern with an avatar of me that ran around a track on an LCD monitor in front of me. Treadmills aren't what they used to be.

4. Cholesterol Avoidance. Yes, I am supposed to do this all the time but I've been a little lazy - a speck of cheese here, a scoop of real ice cream there. But this past weekend I totaled zero milligrams in preparation for today's blood test. It's like crunching before the big final although I'm not sure it helps even that much. We'll see. I haven't been tested in almost a year, so it'll be interesting to see how bad it is now.