Sunday, July 21, 2013

Hotel - Breakfast Comedy (not being serious)

My family is really enjoying the hotel stay, but there are some things we are getting used to. The most annoying of which is you have to get dressed up for breakfast, who wants to go through all that hassle. I prefer my morning meal in the nude. Now I know what you are thinking, "But what about your children?" No need to worry, I have spoken to my children's therapist who tells me they are doing fine. They are so alright with it, that nude breakfast is a family affair. As an added bonus it also makes cleaning up the kids afterward a breeze. Just squeegee all the spilled food off of them.
When we checked into our hotel the staff said to treat our hotel stay as our home away from home. Needless to say our first time to the buffet breakfast was a rude awakening.
Hotel staff, "What are you all doing?!?"
Me, "I thought you said this hotel was accommodating?"

Teaching Megan about the Godhead

One night I was teaching my daughter about the Godhead. I told her about Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost. I gave her a 20 minute lesson on each member. At the end of the lesson I asked Megan who the three members of the Godhead are. At which time Megan said, "I don't know."
Me, "We just had a lesson on these people and repeated their names many times so how do you not know their names?"
Megan, "I forgot."
Sighing I say, " I will give you a few minutes to think about it."
About a minute later, Megan tentatively asked, "Jesus?"
"Yes, very good, one of the members of the Godhead is Jesus Christ. How about the other two?"
"I don't remember."
"You don't have to answer immediately, you can think about it."
After more time passes Megan says, "I don't remember."
"OK I will give you a hint, one of them is a spirit that dwells inside you."
"The Holy Ghost?"
"You are doing great, who is the last member of the Godhead? He is a person you pray to every night."
"Close, we pray through Jesus Christ, but who to we pray to?"
"I don't know."
"Well start saying a prayer and you will say his name almost immediately."
"I already said my prayers."
"Yes but you are having problems remembering this member of the Godhead, so start saying a prayer and you will say is name."
"I see his name in my mind."
"OK so tell me his name."
"I see it in my mind."
Exasperation starting to enter my voice, "Then tell me his name."
After a brief pause Megan defeatedly says, "I don't know his name."
Reassuringly, "OK then start saying a prayer and you will say his name."
"I already said my prayers"
"Just start saying a prayer!"
"OK, OK."
After a noticeable pause, Megan whispers in my ear, "How do I say a prayer?"
Sighing, "You just finished saying a prayer tonight and you say a prayer every day, how on earth could you forget to pray?"
"I don't know."
"OK," I take a deep breath, "we start prayer with 'Dear ...'"
Megan exclaims, "Heavenly Father!"
"You got it. I knew you knew his name."
We then both hug. Megan tells me how happy she is to get the answer.
Proudly I ask, "So who are the three members of the Godhead?"
Megan, "I forgot."

Thursday, July 4, 2013

The Holy Ghost and Scripture

The scriptures have been given to us because through reading and living them the holy ghost is invited into our life. However, there is a catch, in order for us to read the scriptures for understanding and spiritual growth we must have the Holy Ghost already with us. So how do we get the spirit to be with us in the first place? The answer is through personal prayer. This is the reason we pray always, even before reading scriptures. Prayer combined with obedience opens the spiritual gateway for the Holy Ghost.
Knowledge of scriptures is good just as knowledge of the Holy Ghost is good. However, knowledge is not enough. Knowledge of purity is good, but living a pure life is much better. In the same way, knowledge of the gospel is good but living the principles and doctrines found in the gospel is much better. It is my belief that when we are at the judgement bar we will not be quizzed on our scriptural knowledge. Instead we will be asked what we did with the knowledge we have been given.
What this means to me in my personal life is when I read the scriptures I must experience a call to action. I must feel a strong connection to the spirit every time I read the scriptures; if I do not, then I am doing something wrong and I need to change. The Holy Ghost testifies of truth and calls us to action when it is needed. Whenever I behave in an unchristian way the spirit withdraws. When I subsequently read the scriptures I do not feel the spirit strongly until I take action and repent. Sometimes I forget, and when I sit down to read the scriptures I don't feel the spirit strongly. I then pray and ask Heavenly Father what it was I did that causes the spirit to withdrawal. Once I ask with sincere desire, the Holy Ghost brings to my remembrance the action I took that needs to change. This then allows me to repent and feel a powerful witness of the spirit which I can only describe as the most amazing feeling of joy I have ever experienced.
The savior distilled all the commandments given to us down to two fundamentals: love God and love our fellow man. I believe this can be reduced even more: follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost in all things.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Interesting Hotel Stay

I have stayed at a number of hotels and have some pretty interesting experience but the most interesting one happened last night. My wife and children just finished setting up our living arrangements and were heading down stairs for a walk. My wife grabbed the door handle and pulled it open to go down stairs but it wouldn't budge. I then tried twisting and pulling both possible ways but no go. We called down and a host came up to help but couldn't open the door either. Maintenance came up quickly after but had just as much success as the rest of us. After some supplies were gathered maintenance came back up and was able to pry the door open with a crow bar. Once the door was opened it was fairly apparent that the maintenance worker came to our aid directly from his house. The hotel staff were so nice and apologetic afterward and offered us whatever we wanted to make up for the inconvenience. It was only a fifteen minute wait so my wife and I mostly thought it was funny.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Animoto Video

Video I made in less than a minute using Animoto Video.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Home Repairs

I have been doing a lot of house repairs lately. I have installed automatic door closers on many of the doors in our house and have ordered more door closers for some exterior doors. If you are not already familiar with a door closer, it is a spring loaded hinge that attaches the door to the frame. The wider the door opened, the more resistance is felt and the faster the door closes. At this rate of installation, in the next few weeks most of the doors in my house will be nearly impossible to open but they will all close flawlessly. My wife had the most concerned with the bathroom door, as our youngest, Veronica, loves to get into this room and touch/lick everything. I put the highest setting on the door closer for the bathroom. Now most of our guests and young children rather pee in the hallway as opposed to opening the bathroom door. I am still very proud to get that closer installed. It only took 30 different power tools and six quick hours of intense manual labor. No longer will I have to be calling out to people to close a door in my house; all our doors slam shut nearly the moment they're opened. Our electricity bill has never been lower.

When I first looked into automatic door closers, I found a number of videos describing how to perform the installation yourself. These videos showed people smiling, laughing, and having a grand ol time installing door closers. These people described how easy it is to perform this installation. I quickly found out that they were all liars.
The first thing that should have tipped me off was that all the doors and framing displayed in these videos we're perfect geometric shapes. None of the existing doors and framing in my house came close to this ideal.
These Handymen showed how a door installation could be done in a few simple steps. When applying these steps to the doors and framing of my house (which were made in the late 1950s) the number of steps increased exponentially. I found the complexity of hanging a 1950s door roughly equates to that of performing brain surgery on someone born in the 1950s.
With that being said, I did find it to be a challenging and fulfilling experience. Which is why I will be doing it again for my external doors. I guess I am just a glutton for punishment

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Fun with Bees

My family had an interesting experience today. About 10 bees came pouring out of our chimney this morning. I grabbed the kids and ran them into their room and close the door. Sarah was kind of panicking so wasn't much help at first. Then I took a Tupperware container with a lid and started catching the bees and releasing them outside. I know sometimes when they sting or die they can trigger other bees to attack. After several minutes Sarah also was able to grab a piece of Tupperware and help get the bees out of the house. After the 10 bees came through no other bees came down except for two 20 minutes later; after that Sarah covered up the fireplace with a plastic bag and secured it with tape. We had a local beekeeper come over to our house and see what was going on. Turns out a bunch of Scouter bees came down our chimney. The beekeeper verified there was no hive or so warm nearby. Still thought it was pretty scary/odd that so many came through at the exact same time but the beekeeper said he has heard to of up to 30 come in through a chimney. The beekeeper recommended we cover up the top of the fireplace chimney with a board weighted down with bricks. So that is what I did. Hopefully no more bees from here on out.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Google Reviews Using Your Real Name

Posting  on!topic/maps/_lhgjeLIwMg


I agree with your sentiments. I have found most reviewers to leave honest feedback and most businesses strive to make improvements in response to customer feedback. I find this policy change of showing peoples names needed, because a few bad apples ruined the bunch. Being an anonymous user gives people the power to say things they never would normally. Because some people have abused this power now all the rest of us are being "punished."


I post as myself everywhere and have a unique name so I am obviously biased against anonymity. Statistically speaking, a person who post using their real name live just as happy a life as those that do not. I have not seen any negative effects in my life as a result of posting using my real name and believe most people who do would say the same. Again this goes back to the extremes. Most people in America are not a part of a persecuted minority group. Because of this, your comment does not seem applicable to most people living in America. I do agree with your conclusion though, that privacy is valuable to some people and in some situations, this mostly comes down to common sense. Anonymous name or not I would not post a public review of my primary bank, as this would not be a good idea. With the vast number of Americas using smart technology, on-line services, and numerous digital resources, privacy is simply a figment of the imagination. Even hundreds of years ago when people lived in small towns and neighborhoods there was no such thing as "privacy." Anonymous reviews or not, if a person wants to find you they can.

Realistically I think the issue has more to do with businesses having access to people's names with the potential to hound them than any privacy issues. Again we are looking at the extreme cases as I have posted hundreds of negative and positive reviews of businesses with absolutely no problem whatsoever. I would like to reiterate, if you are online making reviews then ANYONE has the potential of monitoring you. In reality, this usually is not a problem though. If you are an average American, then posting reviews using your real name will likely not effect you in any way whatsoever, so long as you use common sense.

The most important reason that real names should be used comes down to the USA legal system. Whoever stands to loose the most is given preferential treatment (this is why pedestrians have the right of way, and there are many more examples). So we now have two situations (both of which are not likely but possible).
1. Users being hounded by businesses to change their review.
2. Anonymous user posting a horrible, untrue review.

In case 1 being hounded could cause serious issues in a persons life (but in the vast majority of cases this is simply viewed as an irritant) and there are many avenues of recourse available to people who are being hounded. The main one being to sue a business that does this.
In case 2 a horrible review could cause negative publicity and could even put a business out of operation, which would be far more damaging than a simple irritant. More that this, there is absolutely no recourse of action a business could take in this situation unless they already have a good idea who made this comment, and even then possibly not due to free speech.