Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Las Vegas Wranglers hockey game

Tonight we had ice box seats—that’s right next to the ice—for the Las Vegas Wranglers versus Idaho Steelheads hockey game. The event was sponsored by one of my clients, Dr. Azimi, a Downtown Las Vegas dentist who’s also the Wranglers team dentist.

We invited some work associates to join us in the ice box where we hung out together, enjoyed food and drinks and all the loud raucous activity that accompanies a hockey game. Yes, there were plenty of player fist fights and checks into the plexiglas. Luckily no pucks came flying into the ice box area. We had a fun time and enjoyed the exposure to hockey.

Here are a couple of rink-side photos of us and our friends, Michelle and Jack.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

A river runs through it

Yesterday I helped our neighbors to the west (the Cronks) put new landscaping in their front yard. We did some rock landscaping complete with a dry riverbed just on the other side of the small retainer wall we put next to our driveway last year. Now the neighborhood mailbox is surrounded on both sides by new landscaping.

We moved eight tons of rock—and not to make those of you back east or further north jealous—we got sunburned from working outside all morning. And not to make you even more jealous, we enjoyed In-N-Out hamburgers and fries after our hard work (so that pretty much negated any calories burned during the process).

Here are some photos from the work project.

Here are Eliana and Dominic today after church enjoying the new terrain.

In other news, Eliana sneezed out a double nostril explosion of snot today in sacrament meeting (our ward conference) while we sat on the second row, in the middle, and in front of practically everyone. She entertained many much to her parents’ chagrin.

Also today at church, Eliana gave her first talk in Primary. No pressure, she only had the entire stake Primary presidency and all the ward Primary leaders watching her. She and Vickey put the talk together this past week with pictures from Deseret Book and her talk written on the back side of each photo. Ellie wrote her own talk and pretty much memorized it for her presentation today (we’re still working on those reading skills). She did a great job!

Here she is this morning practicing her talk and posing for her mom.

Now it’s off to a late lunch, then choir, then home teachers coming to visit us, then dinner at the Coglianeses, then a visit to one of the families I home teach. Then it’s off to another very busy week.

Hope you all enjoyed the weekend!

Friday, February 09, 2007

White Christmas

This photo was taken by Vickey’s dad in December while we were there for Christmas. This is the maple tree outside their kitchen window.

Yes, last year we had a white Christmas. The snow was beautiful…almost as beautiful as knowing we’d be driving south and leaving it behind.

All the courtyard’s a stage

We’ve all heard the famous William Shakespeare lines: “All the world’s a stage…[and we’re] merely players.” Eliana brought her act to our front courtyard this afternoon while waiting for her friend Olympia to join her for an afternoon jump on the trampoline and swing on the swing set.

Vickey took these photos as Eliana belted out, vibrato and all, how happy she was for her family, her friends and for Jesus. She’s starting to remember the Primary songs and sing them on a whim, mixed with some creative lyrics.

She’s been out of school the past two days so I took some time off this afternoon to spend with her. We went to see Charlotte’s Web at the movie theater. She enjoyed her $5 popcorn, drink and candy and I enjoyed the break from work. I’ve been working hard since the holidays. Ellie even cried when Charlotte died…what a cutie.

And out of deference to Mr. Shakespeare, the complete text, from As You Like It:

All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms.
And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress' eyebrow. Then a soldier,
Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon's mouth. And then the justice,
In fair round belly with good capon lined,
With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances;
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side,
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

One just isn’t enough

Dominic’s 19 months old now (and weighs 25 pounds). Today Vickey learned from taking him into the pediatrician after three consecutive months of being sick that for our doc, 18 months is the limit on pacifiers. He says cold turkey is the way to go.

Well, you can see Dominic has a different opinion.

Vickey snapped these photos yesterday just after changing Dominic’s diaper. He had a binky when he was being changed and managed to reach for and grab another one. He was, as Vickey would say, pleased as punch with himself.

Little does he know he’s soon getting a taste of cold Thanksgiving leftovers.

And the little quarter-of-a-year illness: just a cold. He’ll get over it. No prescriptions, just two doctor co-pays, thank you very much.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

A sunny day in Vegas

This morning I took Tank to get his rabies shot. Those of you who’ve seen him lately have commented that he has gained some weight. It’s true, since he was neutered he has managed to pack on a few pounds. We figured he had gained about 10 pounds. Wrong. He has actually gained 20 pounds, weighing in at a hefty 90 pounds.

I guess that explains why the few times I’ve taken him running lately he’s good for about the first 5 or 10 minutes, then I have to basically drag him the rest of the way.

I’ll have to plan more time to exercise Tank these next few months. At least it’s getting warmer. And I can always use the exercise myself.

Once I got back from the vet, Vickey went to the stake center to contribute to a quilt tying project for homeless children. While she was there I got the kids and myself ready for an outing, the 35th birthday party for CCSN (Community College of Southern Nevada; one of my clients). Desert Toyota Scion donated a Scion to be given away in a drawing this afternoon.

This photo was taken in the back of the truck as we waited for Vickey to return from her volunteer work.

We enjoyed lunch, catered by Claim Jumper, and some of the festivities. Here are the two kiddies at the dealership parking lot. You can see Dominic wasn’t interested in posing for the photo.

And here’s a photo of one of the Scion models they were giving away—the winner got to choose between three models.

After lunch at the CCSN birthday party we made a quick stop (if there’s such a thing on a Saturday) at Sam’s Club and Wal-Mart.

This afternoon I pruned some of the plants while the kids played on the swing set and trampoline and Tank dug up rocks with which to play fetch. It was a warm, sunny afternoon in Vegas.

Vickey and I are in the middle of a reorganization project for her Pampered Chef office supplies. Everything’s going in the downstairs bedroom which has now been claimed by the scrapbooking queen and will serve to house her Pampered Chef paraphernalia.

Someday we’ll have the bed in that room put into one of those wall units so it can be folded up and out of the way when it’s not in use. But don’t worry, we have no plans to get rid of that bed like we did our other queen bed. We’ll keep it around for the grandparents and other visitors.

It’s hard to believe we’re already into February. Vickey has three to four Pampered Chef shows lined up each week this month. It’s going to be a busy one.

We’re looking forward to hanging out with the Coglianeses for the Super Bowl tomorrow.

One last parting thought: guys, be thankful for testosterone. It just may be nature’s way of keeping you active and 20 pounds lighter than you could be.