Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Many Reasons to Give Thanks

Our family has so many reasons to be thankful. We have a wonderful family, live in a gorgeous city, and have friends and family who care about us. Kelli and I love the Holidays for many reasons, but being able to reflect on the many positives in our lives at any given time has to top the list. We recently found out that our bid for a townhouse we've been looking at for over 5 months was finally accepted. If all goes according to plan, we should close just after the first of the year! It's going to be a crazy holiday season, but we're very thankful for the many blessings bestowed upon us and are excited for the next adventure.

Over Thanksgiving weekend, we were fortunate enough to have my Uncle's family visit for 2 days. Even though it took them twice as long to get here (LA traffic, always unpredictable) we enjoyed their company immensely and had a great time eating lots of food, playing games, going bowling, and catching up on things. Their visit just made us even more excited to see our family in ND in just a few weeks! Until then, take care-

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Rest of the Pictures...


If you want to check out the rest of our family pictures and Mariah's pictures, you can go to www.amandaprince.com, then click on the main site, then client lounge, and Mariah is the password. Amanda did an amazing job!!! We are meeting with her tomorrow to order and we have no idea how to choose.

Hope you enjoy!!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Obsessions

I've been dealing with Kelli and Mariah's obsessions lately.

Kelli checks her email every 5 minutes to see if our pictures are ready yet, and has been doing this since last week Tuesday. Hopefully they'll be done soon because I already have to buy a new mouse as she's worn out our current one. (The truth is Mariah dropped it, but saying Kelli wore it out sounds better)

Mariah, on the other hand, is obsessed with making bath time as difficult as possible for me. The past 3 times I've given her a bath, she's dirtied the water. The other night, she went 4 times in one night. That's 4 times I had to fill the tub, drain and disinfect the tub and toys, and start the process over again. Luckily Kelli has been able to help out, but this process is getting old really fast. I think she has something against the way I give baths. It's funny what unconditional love makes you do...over and over again. Take care -

Small Shaker

Kelli and I awoke last night to what sounded like a train in the near distance and then a small rolling earthquake. It was nothing big, but still not something we're used to.

On Friday and Saturday, we were able to welcome the SigEp Regional Director into our home. I helped him and some other local volunteers with a membership review at a San Diego chapter. His visit brought back many memories of my time on the road, the challenges I faced, and the experience I gained during that year. I wish him the best of luck during the rest of his adventure and can't wait to share even more "stories from the road" in the future.

On a sad note, our thoughts and prayers are with those in LA who have lost their homes or had to be evacuated. The fires in SoCal are the most ominous natural disaster I have ever witnessed. The power of mother nature and the feeling of helplessness are overwhelming. There must be a reason for it all, but it's really hard to find a positive to attach to fires that burn and melt everything in sight. I think it's the uncertainty of the direction and pace of the fires that is so disturbing.

Take care -

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Weekend

This past weekend was somewhat uneventful, but after running around so much last weekend, it was nice to be able to sit at home, relax, and play with Mariah and Nala.

The weekend started off fantastic as my company decided to provide everyone with iPhones! Even though I'm a huge Mac guy, I was somewhat skeptical of the iPhone. How wrong I was. It's truly a amazing little device. As with everything, it's not perfect, but I have no doubt that Apple will continue to improve upon an already spectacular product. I spent much of Friday night and Saturday morning playing around with it.

Sunday was another great day as it rained most of the day. I wrote about this before, but because we get rain so rarely, we simply love basking in the peaceful sounds and smells of the rain. It makes us both miss the summers in ND, but definitely not the winters. In stark contrast however, my Mom sent pictures of the 12 inches of snow they received...I'll keep the sunny days and rare rainfall :)

The only negative about the rainfall was the fact that the weatherstripping on my sunroof has a leak. I discovered it a few weeks ago after going through a car wash and getting a wet lap on the way to a business meeting. Perfect timing. The problem hasn't solved itself and I'm going to have to get it fixed very soon. Maybe it's a good thing it doesn't rain that often.

Tonight we're heading to the Gaslamp district to have dinner with one of our friends. Mariah loves people watching at busy restaurants (On the Border is now her new favorite) so hopefully it will be fun for everyone.

I'm still working on Mariah's 1st Birthday video. Ok, I actually have only barely started, but I will try to get it finished somewhat soon.

Take care -

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Beautiful Pictures

Well, Matt, Mariah, and I headed to a park in Carlsbad, CA on Saturday to meet up with the photographer that did Mariah's pictures when she was just 2 weeks old. The pictures she did were just amazing then and we couldn't wait to see what she could do with our little cutie now. So, she posted our Sneak Peak on her blog and the 4 pictures are just amazing. I don't know how we will ever choose when we get to see the entire gallery. If you would like to check them out, you can go to www.amandaprince.com and then click on the blog link. You may have to scroll down a little bit to the entry titled "The Birthday Girl." Also, if you would like to check out her newborn pics, they are the second set of pictures that come up on her slideshow on her website.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A Reflection on Change and Hope

"Most of life is outside the government sector," says David Boaz of the Cato Institute. "Most change in America doesn't come from politicians. It comes from people inventing things and creating. The telephone, the telegraph, the computer, all those things didn't come from government. Our world is going to get better and better, as long as we keep the politicians from screwing it up."

I truly believe in the American dream and that our country's greatness comes from those who work hard to achieve their dream and are rewarded (not only financially) when they're successful. Our country was not founded upon welfare and handouts. Rather, we are a society founded on the ideal that free individuals should be able to pursue our highest ambitions so long as they're in line with the rules we've set in place. No matter how many constraints are placed upon success, our country will always be a nation "conceived in liberty"* and break off the shackles that restrain success.

Our morality always has and always will continue to guide our endeavors for liberty while at the same time providing for those less fortunate. It's our founding principles, not the hope that we will change them, that makes America exceptional and makes me proud everyday to live in this country.

Take care-

*Abraham Lincoln - Gettysburg Address

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Great Day

Today is truly a great day. 1 year ago, our precious daughter was born. We thank God everyday for bringing her into our lives. She's truly the greatest gift anyone could ever ask for. Mariah we love you very much and are looking forward to many more fun years and birthdays!

As everyone knows, it's also election day. That's important as well and if you know me, I love politics, but won't get into that at this moment. Because, even more important than following every twist and turn of the election is the fact that it's raining today! San Diego may have the most perfect weather in the nation, but that also makes it the most boring weather. I watch the weather every morning to see if it will be 70 and sunny or 78 and sunny knowing that the answer really won't make a difference in what I choose to wear that day. However, last night and today we finally received something different...RAIN! I miss the weather in ND (spring, summer, and fall...not winter) where you could start a round of golf at 11 am when it's sunny and 70 and by the end of the round it could be sleeting with a 45 mph wind. Great stuff.

For today, Kelli and I are extremely happy that it's peacefully raining giving us a little variety. But most of all, we are beside ourselves with joy that 1 year ago, our beautiful daughter was born. Mariah, you've impacted our lives more than you'll ever know...thank you God for giving us such a perfect gift.

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Beginning of Mariah's Fall

Well, we created a blog. It's obviously the cool thing to do, but probably so last year :)

Kelli and I often discuss how much we love San Diego, but how much we also miss our family. So, I'm using this blog to hopefully bridge the distance between us all. I've finally started making videos to send back home and they're getting to be too large to send via email. Therefore, sharing videos will be one of the main purposes of this blog. I'm hoping that it will also improve my lack of extemporaneous writing skills.

Most of all, we want our family and friends to be a part of Mariah's life. You've influenced us both greatly and we can only hope that she has the same great childhood surrounded by family and friends.

I've included a video of our trip to the Pumpkin Patch and Mariah's first Halloween. The Pumpkin Patch is located outside San Diego in the hills/desert. Unfortunately, it was 95 degrees that day, not exactly the fall, Pumpkin Patch weather one would hope for. Mariah can't say no, so she wore her long sleeve Halloween shirt. At the farm, there were tons of pumpkins, obviously, and some carnival games for the kids. It was mostly a photo op for both us and our neighbors. The girls got tired after only a few hours, so we packed up and headed back toward the coast where it was much cooler.

The other half of the video is Mariah's first Halloween. Kelli took her to a shopping center where you can donate canned goods and in return some of the stores gave away candy. This seemed to work out better as Mariah wouldn't really understand the "Trick or Treating" concept. She had more fun playing with the fountain because her mean parents won't give her the candy. Poor deprived child.

video

Hopefully this proves to be a good medium for communication and keeping everyone caught up on what's happening with Mariah and Nala.

Take Care -