Monday, July 31, 2006

Strange Place?

A few observations on living in a new place: Going on a late night walk with Carolyn, we don't need a sweat shirt or jacket. This doesn't feel like that great of a revelation, but every time I start to head out the door, I am stopped by this internal watchdog that says I need a jacket. I have to tell myself, multiple times; its okay-it's actually rather hot outside. The lowest temperature since we've been here was 70.

The road kill is different. Armadillos. It's just weird to see the majority of road kill not being furry.

The bugs are louder. There are these bugs in the trees that create a veritable tsunami of sound. I don't know what they are, but they scare me.

Someone warned us when we left that we'd have to deal with ticks and chiggers when we went hiking. I thought whatever, it won't be a problem. Today we went hiking. When we got home I found this little bug crawling on my arm. It looked like a tiny spider that was grayish and kind of red (is it a chigger?). I showed it to Carolyn & we both don't know what it is. I took my socks off. Walked around for a while and began wiping some dirt off of my feet. Mind you this is a good 3 hours after the hike was over. I found about four of those little things trying to burrow into my ankles. They looked liked flecks of dirt. Now all night I've thought there are bugs crawling on me. This will take some getting used to.

I've yet to see a strange looking boy on a broken down wooden porch playing a banjo while a bloodhound rummages through the rusting cars in the yard. I haven't even seen someone with bad teeth. However, country music does play in the grocery stores. Everything mentioned above will become normal, but this country music thing is where I draw the line. May I never get used to that.

Saturday, July 29, 2006


We had to travel yonder to find it, but we made our big Ikea trip. It was a bit of a drive all the way to just outside of Dallas in Frisco Texas, 4 ½ hours one way. We had fun though. We picked up a couple of chairs, some lighting for the house, some shelves, and a curtain. One of the best things about Ikea is their kitchen. It’s cheap, delicious, and it’s right there so you can take a break while you shop.

Sometimes when I’m in a department store or in the mall I think about the layout of the store and the motivation of the design (grocery stores put milk in the back so you’ll look at other stuff and buy more when you just stopped to get milk). Most stores are designed to keep you in. Get lost amongst the clothes and shiny things. It sometimes makes me feel disgruntled that they are trying to trick me. Ikea is definitely designed to keep you in.

Their floor plan is a labyrinth that takes you all around the store directed by friendly blue arrows. They place the food court right at the point when you’re thinking, I’m about done here, I should go. But, you see affordable tasty food, get nourished and find you have more stamina to shop. Unlike other stores, I see Ikea’s ploy and am impressed. I don’t feel tricked because the prices are so great. And their stuff is just neat. Designed on purpose to be functional yet attractive. My favorite department the lighting. So many cool shapes and shades. I really like cool lights.

If you’ve never had the opportunity to go to Ikea and live in Portland, click here. You’re wait is almost over. I think Costco just dropped down a level on the after church lunch hierarchy.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Favorite Commercial

Click here to watch my one of my all time favorite commercials. It was shown during Super Bowl XL. You know, the one with the referees.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Final Road Trip Update

As you can tell from the picture above, the road trip is over. We arrived yeterday to find our apartment filled with a bunch of boxes. We've been on campus for about 24 hours now and it is very stange. The weirdness is walking around the dorm & campus realizing that this is where I live, I'm not visiting. The vacation is over and it was a one-way trip. We are very excited to have the rest of this week to get settled in and I'll begin my new job August 1st.

There is one more thought on the road trip that will be posted later. Stay tuned.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Rad Trip Update, Day 5

Well, we made it from Denver to Wichita in about 7 hours. Smooth drive. Today was the first day we've been able to only stop when we need to get gas. Efficient driving, that's what I'm talking about.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Touring Sans Lance

It looks like the American domination of the Tour de France will continue for the eight year in a row. There hasn't been as much coverage since Lance is out, but Floyd Landis is set up to win it all tomorrow. He regained the lead today by 59 seconds and baring any unforeseen events he should win it all. As with all great sports victories Landis has dealt with a bad hip for the entire tour. He is scheduled to have his hip replaced as soon as the race is over. Endurance athletes, who can understand them?

Road Trip Update, Day 5

Rocky Mountain High: Well we're in Denver and had a great day exploring the city. Denver has some very cool architecture and it was fun just to look at all the buildings. Their library was designed by Michael Graves of The Portland Building & Target fame. They also have a very funky art museum, and are about to finish an even funkier addition to the museum. Unfortunately the US mint & the capitol building weren't open for tours on the weekend, but we enjoyed our stay. I'll openly admit that I thought that there would be amazing views of the Rockies from the city, but I'm uninspired. There are mountains in the distance, but nothing greater looking than when in Portland. I'm chalking up the disappointment to hazy sky and summer melting of snow. Tomorrow we're going for 500+ miles. Our goal is Wichita with arrival in Siloam Springs on Monday. Kansas here we come!

Friday, July 21, 2006

Roadtrip Update, Day 4

The Grand Canyon of Yellowstone was just down the road from our campground and was definitely my favorite place. There were many times it felt like we were in a sci-fi movie. Strange smells, big animals running wild, boiling water, and mud that explodes. Very cool. Colorado here we come!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

United Van Lines

Our earthly posessions headed out without us last week. We hope they'll be waiting for us when we arrive on JBU's campus.


We're heading on our one way trip south to Arkansas. After many sad goodbyes to our friends and family we've made our first day, all the way to Missoula Montana. We've already seen liscense plates from 26 of the states, including Arkansas. Tomorrow we begin a two day stop in Yellowstone where Micah & Christa will join us for some camping.

Congrats Cassidy & Andrew

I'd like to introduce Andrew & Cassidy Harper. They had a beautiful wedding last Saturday at Officers Row in Vancouver USA. They are now heading to a new life in Georgia.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Hagg Lake Triathlon

Last Saturday the three of us completed out first ever Triathlon. Carolyn's brother John is on the right.

1/2 mile swim
12.9 mile bike
3 mile run

Fun times had by all. Special thanks to our parents for coming out to support us. It was nice having someone waiting at the finish line.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Public Chorus

Having grown up in the church, I'm used to groups of people singing. As I've gotten older I came to the realization that people outside of the churchprobably don't sing together that much, okay really not at all.

I was almostbeginning to think that it was somewhat of a "church" phenomenon, adults singing together on a regular basis. At certain concerts I've attended thecrowd would sing along, but it is really the band, not the crowd singing. Of course you've got the random person during the national anthem singing along at a Blazer game and everyone in a five row radius gets really annoyed with, but that's about it. Then I realized...the 7th inning stretch. Since I didn't go to baseballgames as a kid, I didn't know that adults really sang 'Take me out to theballgame' at every game. On fathers day I went to Safeco, and stared in wonder at everybody singing along. Everybody knows the song, but I really couldn't imagine adults singing it...out loud...together...with other adults (who might even be sober) around. It just seems weird, I don't know how they do it with a straight face.