Wednesday, March 29, 2006

BYU stone cold sober and number one for private school value

You’re probably familiar with the oft touted, frequently mocked ranking received annually by my alma matter, BYU, from the Princeton Review: the nation’s top stone cold sober school.

This year BYU is also ranked number one for best value among America’s private colleges and universities.

You have to register, annoying, to view the complete Princeton Review. But you can read what the Salt Lake City Desert News said about the rankings online.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

A baby, a four year old, and a dog

It’s funny how after six-and-a-half years of marriage Vickey and I now find ourselves responsible for two kids and a dog. And what’s not so funny about this scenario is the number of nights we actually get to sleep through the night.

As a single person I don’t think I appreciated how easy it was to sleep through the night. I definitely took that luxury for granted. And it’s amazing what a good night’s sleep will do for your temperament and patience.

Vickey’s still breast feeding Dominic, so she’s up once or twice a night with him. And although I don’t get out of bed, I’m usually awakened by the activity.

The dog sleeps in our room since Vickey discovered a tic on Eliana’s neck one morning in the bathtub. Tank used to sleep on Ellie’s bed — it was her preference — until the tic incident. But now it’s licking, scratching and shaking of a big dog’s head and floppy ears that wakes me up at night.

Then there’s Eliana. I’m starting to wonder if she has some kind of sleeping disorder. Since Dominic was born I don’t think there has been one single night that she’s not awake. We warned her for months that if she kept waking us up in the middle of the night we were going to lock her door so she couldn’t get out. Finally this week, I did it. I had had enough of those 3 a.m. “Mom, I love you.” comments.

And keep in mind that those interruptions were in between being wakened by a crying baby or obnoxious dog. Seriously, there’s only so much one can endure.

So this week we’ve had to put up with middle-of-the-night screaming, pounding and kicking fits for 20 to 40 minutes until Ellie realizes her parents aren’t getting out of bed and aren’t coming to help her. Vickey got up the first night when Ellie insisted she had to go pee (we had already ignored that the Grinch was coming, and that she couldn’t breath with her door closed), but when barely a tablespoon of pee trickled out, it confirmed our suspicion that it was an excuse to get let out of her room and be tucked in again by her mom.

Even last night there was kicking on the door in the middle of the night, but no screaming, and I’m the only one who heard it. Like I said before, I’m starting to wonder if Ellie is sleepwalking. Perhaps tonight, since Vickey wasn’t awakened by her last night, we’ll leave the door unlocked and we’ll see if she ends up in our bedroom.

The gist of all this is to appreciate a full night’s sleep while you can. I know I didn’t.

Into the Twilight

We’re T minus two and counting … what I mean is there are two Into the Light shows down and two more to go.

I sit this morning at the Toyota dealer waiting for service to be done on the Sequoia because I awoke early and couldn’t go back to sleep. Besides, I thought, it would be best for the Sequoia to be up-to-date on its maintenance before Vickey, her dad, the kids and Tank make the trip Monday to Utah to spend the week.

Yes, today’s a busy day, with my two shows, a Pampered Chef show for Vickey and my dad flying to SLC this morning. Thank goodness we’ve got Vickey’s folks and my mom to help us keep track of Eliana and Dominic.

I’ve had a great time performing in the stake musical. At least it’s been fun. Yes, it has been a lot of work, since mid-November, but it has been a good experience and I’ve made many new friends. Vickey commented that she has received some special treatment the past two nights as she’s come to the show (i.e., reserved seats, being told to come to the front of the line because she’s my wife) and can relate somewhat to my earlier comments about being a sort of celebrity at church. It’s funny how people’s perceptions affect how they treat others.

I’ve been so impressed with all the people involved in the production. Everyone has been so kind. It has been nice to be part of a team and be involved in the performing arts again. It has been a while since I was in a production and I’m reminded of my affinity for being on stage.

It will also be nice to have time to tend to some other things that have been undone for a while, like yard work, home maintenance, being a husband and father, Elders Quorum church service, and building my business.

There will be a few residual Into the Light activities though, like striking the set, a cast party, and putting together a cast album. The cast album is something they’ve just decided to do. It’ll be interesting to see how that goes together. I’m sure it’s going to be difficult to get everyone together in the same place.

Vickey did a Pampered Chef show for a lady who works at The Venetian a few weeks ago and she was kind enough to get four tickets to Blue Man Group for us. Vickey’s going to go with her dad, my mom and Melanie, a friend of Vickey’s who worked with her in young womens. I volunteered to stay home with the kids since I’ve seen the show a couple times and am not fond enough of it to see it a third time.

That same contact at The Venetian is supposed to be checking into auditions for the new show at the property, Phantom of the Opera. It would be fun to audition, just for kicks.

Gladys Knight, her husband and daughter’s family came to the show Thursday night, on their way out they all commented at how much they enjoyed the show. Gladys commented at what a great job I did, a remark she reiterated several times as they walked by. Her grandson won the award for being the cutest that night. He came up to me holding his mom’s hand and said, “You were my favorite!” He was a cute kid. I shook his hand and asked his name and said thanks.

The thing I noticed last night as we were meeting and greeting after the show is that different cast members are complimented by different audience members. It’s cool that each of us is able to reach different audience members.

That’s an observation I took away from my Young Ambassadors experience as well. It seemed there was always someone who would be very complimentary of one of the cast members. You never know who’s watching and whether or not you’re someone’s favorite person on stage.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Bitter sweet changes

Yesterday Vickey was released from her young women’s calling. Since we moved here she has spent almost all her time serving in the young women’s organization at church. I believe there was a 2-3 month stint as a Relief Society teacher, but other than that, it’s been various callings in young women.

We thought, and hoped, the change was coming for some time now. With me serving as elders quorum president and both of us being self-employed, raising two kids, etc., there has been a lot on our plate — not to mention my commitment to the stake musical which comes to completion on Saturday.

I think Vickey’s relieved and sad at the same time. She’s a great role model and influence for those young girls. I know she was a little teary yesterday when she said goodbye to her class of 12 and 13 year-olds.

But the great thing about the church is there are always those willing to serve. The new presidency will do a great job and bring their specific skills and talents to the young women in our ward.

Tomorrow starts the Into the Light marathon for me, with cast calls at 6 p.m. every night the rest of the week, and at 2 p.m. on Saturday. We have shows at 3 and 7 p.m. Saturday, so it’ll be a long day. Then there’s a cast dance and party afterwards!

I’m really looking forward to sharing what we’ve been working on for so many months. It will be a fun experience. And I hope the message of the musical hits home for audience members — that people will see what results from poor choices and the power of repentance and faith in Jesus Christ.

So, you may not hear from me again this week. For those of you who are able to come to the show, please be sure to say “Hi.”

Show details are on

Sunday, March 19, 2006

American Idol: Vote for the Worst

In a competition that’s “controlled” by the people’s voice, it’s only natural that some people aim to take advantage of the voting system.

Consider family and friends of contestants who vote time and again each week for their loved one.

What about votes from high school or college kids who are friends with the contestants?

A site called Vote for the Worst was launched last season with the sole aim of keeping the worst contestant in the competition as long as possible.

They claim Fox says their site and mission is “hateful” and “mean spirited.” And of course they point to Simon’s comments, which are also similarly classified.

And who, you ask, is this season’s VFTW poster child? Two words: Chicken Little!

Friday, March 10, 2006

Help mom to not be grumpy someday

It’s a funny thing, teaching your child to pray. You never know what they’re going to say.

A week or so ago, in one of Eliana’s prayers without help (that’s when she refuses assistance from mom or dad) she said, “And please bless mommy that she can not be grumpy someday.”

I started to laugh. Mostly because I had made a similar observation not long before, about how Vickey was usually short in dealing with Eliana. But then again, I don’t have the opportunity of doing that every day, almost all day.

It’s fun watching Eliana grow into being a little girl. We’ve already been told of her antics in primary (at church). She just likes being the center of attention. It’ll be so interesting to see what kind of teenager she becomes.

For now, we’re all praying that we can help Vickey so she’s “not so grumpy.”

Alma the Younger – March 23-25

I finally got around to creating the webpage that gives performance information for the upcoming stake musical I’ve been working on since November.

Check it out!

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Another Codella cousin

For those of you who haven’t heard from my sister, Angie, or her husband, Vinny, about their expected arrival, read no further.

For those of you who’d like to know whether they’re having a boy or a girl, keep reading.

For the longest time I’ve felt like they were going to have a girl. Angie’s ultrasound today confirmed that they’re having a boy.

So much for a brother’s intuition.

At Christmastime grandma spoke out with her prediction it would be a boy.

Guess we know who has better intuition.

Congrats go out to Ang & Vin. I’m sure they’ll be posting ultrasound photos on their blog soon.