Sunday, December 30, 2007

2 Week Visit

We took Elisa in to the Dr. on Friday for the two week weigh in. She's beefing up. She has not only regained her birth weight but surpased it. She is now 8 pounds 10 ounces.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

First Hike

Elisa went on her first hike today with us at Lake Fayetteville (That's her in under my jacket). It was a little cold, but a great day for it.

Christmas


It was good to be with family.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Elisa says, “Go Blazers!”


Well, at least I think that’s what she meant to say. Yes, my daughter is a week old and already a Blazer fan. How could she not be? The Blazers are on their longest win streak in 6 years. They also have the first back to back player of the week in Brandon Roy since Clyde Drexler did it ten years ago. All this and they don’t even have their top draft pick. I don’t think the current run means they’ll get past the first round if they make the playoffs, but in a couple years…oh man. I hope I’m able to be in Portland for the parade.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Earthrace


Earthrace is a boat that is setting off in March to set a new speed record for sailing around the world running only on biodiesel. What caught my eye was the crazy front profile of it, but the coolest thing might be it's ability to "submarine" through waves. In high seas it goes through the waves instead of over. It's set to begin the voyage in March.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Celebration

Carolyn bought a bottle of sparkling grape juice for us to celebrate the arrival of our baby. Here we are, celebrating with our moms.

Home

Saturday morning Carolyn & Elisa left the hospital and came home. Elisa's going home outfit was a little big for her, but she seemed to like being in her carseat just fine.


Saturday afternoon at home.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Pictures!







She's Here


On Thursday night, December 13 2007 at 11:57 pm Elisa Marie Brock was born. She weighted 8 pounds 5 ounces and was 20 inches long. Carolyn & baby are fantastic. Everything went amazingly smooth and we can't thak you enough for your prayers. The Lord answered them abundantly. We are so grateful for Elisa's health and Carolyn's smooth labor and delivery.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Baby Time

We're heading into the hospital at 8 this morning for Carolyn to be induced. Hopefully by the end of the day our daughter will be born!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Party On

This week ended up pretty busy, mostly because of the 7 Christmas parties we went to between Wednesday and Saturday. I hadn’t planned on going to half of them because I thought we’d have a baby by then. On Friday we went to the Dr. and all is well with the baby. We are at a week over due now and still waiting. They did an ultrasound and think the baby weighs about 7 ½ pounds, has plenty of fluid, and everything is good. If Carolyn hasn’t gone into labor by next weekend, we’ll go in Sunday night to be induced. It seems like every conversation right now begins with, “Still no baby” instead of hello. Here is the JBU RA team all decked out from their tacky Christmas sweater party on Saturday morning:


On Friday night the City of Siloam Springs had their employee party during which they raffle off prizes. Since Carolyn works for the library we took advantage of the free food and had low expectations for the raffle since she didn’t win anything last year. Well, this year was a different story. She was not only the first, but also the last to win a prize. She won a free day off, and this very comfortable La-Z-Boy recliner (made at their factory here in Siloam Springs).


When we walked in I joked about us wining the chair since we’re probably the only people there who don’t have space in our living room for it. We could barely get a Christmas tree as described in as explained in this previous post, but we are so blessed and thankful for this surprise gift.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Overdue

Still waiting. Nothing new on the baby front. I'm not that anxious yet because I didn't expect her to be on time anyway. However, if something doesn't happen by Saturday my attitude will be different. Last night we headed over to Fayetteville and checked out the lights in the square.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Christmas Tree

It gave me great pleasure last night to buy our Christmas tree. Unlike last year, the store had fir trees to join the collection of pines. This delighted my heart immensely. We now have a doug fir in our living room and it smells terrific. Imagine my great joy when I read the tag on the tree to discover it was from Oregon!

Now, we're on our 10th living room configuration trying to figure out how the tree will fit. We don't have a big living room to begin with and recently we received a glide rocker from my mom. We love but it isn't a small chair and has made it difficult to make the room not seem crowded. I've moved the couch back and forth a couple times, but I think we're almost there. All that to say I'm so glad it's Christmas time.

Baby update: Carolyn went to the Dr. today and there isn't really any news. 5 days until the due date.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

No News

Don't have anything to report on the baby front. We had a great weekend and are now working through our has to, should be, and could be done before baby arrives lists. Our moms are arriving next weekend and for now, here's a picture of our humble abode taken this afternoon.

That's our car on the left side. Our apartment door is right in front of the car, behind the green tree.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Day

Today, I am thankful. It is always sad on holidays being away from family. Talking on the phone this morning doesn't seem quite right. But, Carolyn & I had a great day with friends. It was nice and cold so it definitely felt like Thanksgiving. It was a good day.

Carolyn & I with 11 days left.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Recalls

Does it feel like every child product out there is being recalled right now? We got our car seat yesterday. Today, it's recalled.

That's Just Not Right.

I've always been fascinated with the White House. I can rember at least three different occasions where I've seen replicas of the oval office and enjoyed each one (only one did I get to walk inside). Carolyn & I have been watching the West Wing and I've really been enjoying it.

During one of the episodes a character explains that the eagle in the presidential seal in the oval office rug moves his head from the olive branch to the arrows during times of war. While trying to figure out if this is true (it isn't), I discovered that President Johnson had the floor replaced in the mid-1960s with wood-grain linoleum. It took until 1982 for Reagan to become so embarrased he finally had wood floors reinstalled. The most powerful country in the world had wood-gran linoleum in it's leaders office? It just doesn't seem right.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Walker, Political Advocate?

I just found out that Chuck Norris is an active political commentator for an online site and that he's endorsing former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee. I couldn't help but laugh.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

December 3rd...

...is 20 days away.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Fall


It's Fall now.
We had our first frost this week, the trees are changing, and the air is crisp.
I'm loving these cool clear sunny days.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Tulsa Pictures

Today we basically had a architecure tour. It started in dowtown Tulsa which has one of the largest collections of Art Deco in the country (maybe only behind South Beach Miami?). Here's a couple views of the day:
Me in front of Boston Avenue Church (definitely our favorite building). All the front doors were locked so we wandered around back and found the kitchen enterance open. So we wandered in and eventually ran into someone who didn't seem to mind us looking around inside.

We then went over to the ORU campus and saw their futuristic buildings (Carolyn & I both thought it felt like Disney's Tomorrowland).

And finally the picture everyone wants to see, Carolyn with one month to go.

Today

Today brings the final countdown to one month. One month from today. December 3rd is going to come very fast.

We're in Tulsa for the weekend. Just getting away from campus for a while and hanging out. I'll try to get a picture up soon of our adventures today.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Toilet Paper Game

The only sports tradition here at JBU is the toilet paper game. After the first point scored during the first game of the season the crowd throws the aforementioned personal hygiene product onto the court. It's always fun and the Golden Eagles won the game by like 30 points. Click here to see a video of last years game.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Marriage, Grief, & Loss

Today I went to what I thought would be a marital therapy workshop that H. Norman Wright was leading. There was marriage therapy discussion for the first hour, but then turned to Grief & Loss/Trauma counseling. It was great, but I wasn't really prepared for it. It was very emotionally draining, especially since I've been on edge a lot lately. For example, after putting the crib together I put my hand on the mattress where I pictured our little girl sleeping and tears were right there. If I'm alone and think about meeting my daughter, I'm simply overwhelmed.

Anyway, I'm so glad to have this training and really came to realize that so many people are hurting in ways I didn't know of before. Another thing that Dr. Wright talked a lot about was his dog and how he uses him for for therapy. It completely reinforced to me that we need to get a dog as soon as possible and made me cry thinking about my childhood dog. Don't worry, I wasn't being ridiculously sentimental today, all of the 170 people there cried multiple times throughout the day.
With only 33 days left here is the latest picture of Carolyn's belly:

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Ellsbury

I'm sure it's already been over the media in Portland, but I just made the connection while watching the Red Sox win the ALCS that Jacoby Ellsbury is from Oregon (Madras & went to OSU). It's cool to see him doing so well as a rookie for such a great team.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Henry's, Pizza, & RAs

It has become tradition for my RA retreats that thewhole RA team sit in a hot tub together or lake and drink the best root beer in the world, Henry Weinhard's (which has to be imported because it isn't sold in Arkansas). Though drinking Henry's was obviously a major highlight we had a great rest of the retreat too. We set a vision for the year, debriefed the semester so far, watched Transformers, and really relaxed a lot. On the way home I was talking with Carolyn and was again amazed that I get paid to do this. I'm very thankful for my team and the opportunity to be here at JBU. Here is a picture of us at Pizza Hut for dinner after Carolyn joined us on Saturday.

Notice the random goofy haired guy getting in our picture? He was just friendly I guess.
Extra: Click here for a great review of Henry's quality.

Friday, October 19, 2007

RA Retreat

Today I'm off for the weekend for the J. Alvin RA retreat. It should be a good time of relaxing. Carolyn's going to come join us Saturday and we'll be back Sunday afternoon. I'm praying this will be a good time for team unity, vision casting, and relaxation for the guys.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

First Sighting

Tonight at IGA I saw the first sighting of the Holiday Hawk. It gives me warm fuzzies thinking about the Holiday season and Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash is the first sign.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Sports

I realized the other day that I enjoy watching almost any sport. I've really been enjoying the baseball playoffs, especially watching the Red Sox. This is a very strange thing for me because until 5 years ago if you would've asked me to watch baseball on TV I would've replied, "I'd rather watch paint dry." Now, I find myself checking scores and watching the games. I've always loved watching Basketball, but last year's NBA playoffs were probably the first time I watched without the Blazers being in it. Here comes the thing I've never been able to admit, I sometimes like watching NASCAR too. I know it's just cars going in a circle and it's a total hickville thing to do, but I like cars and I find it intriguing. So, there is my confession for the day. Bring on the Arkansas jokes.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Baby Update 32 1/2 Weeks

We just got back from the Dr.'s office. They did an extra ultrasound because Carolyn's stomach was measuring small. Turns out everything is great and we've got a 4 1/2 pound baby girl in there.

I've always had a unique ability with my expanding stomach. I wonder how much longer until Carolyn surpasses me?


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

8 Weeks Left

Only 2 months until we get to meet our baby girl! Click here to see the latest pictures and update on Carolyn's blog.

Pictures

The whole team in front of the house where we stayed.

The carnival crown gathered for prizes.

Downtown Chicago in front of Buckingham Fountain.

Chicago

It's been over a week since I got back from Chicago and I just wanted to give a quick summary on how it went. First of all, it was a really great trip. The aspect I enjoyed the most was getting to see so many quality ministries taking place to the various people groups throughout the city.

We left on Friday and it took about 11 hours to drive to the neighborhood of Lawndale where we were staying. Our flat was right next to Westlawn Gospel Chapel and on Saturday morning we helped put on a carnival for the neighborhood kids. This neighborhood is strictly African American except for the missionary family that lives there and is where MLK Jr. moved his family before his assassination to bring awareness to the poverty in the ghettos.

That night we went to Boys Town where we learned about Emmaus Ministries and spent about two hours in the gay district. The student I was paired up with and I ended up in a bar for almost two hours talking with a group of three guys. In the bar that night they were having karaoke and the show tunes were big hits. A cross dresser named Honeydew was very affectionate toward us and very disappointed we forgot our cameras and couldn't take a group photo. The guys we hung out with couldn't believe that two straight people from Arkansas would be in a gay bar in Chicago. By the time we left at 12:30 they wanted us to go with them to the next bar. This experience was very valuable in that it helped reinforce that homosexuals are people too who welcomed us to their party wholeheartedly. I doubt my church would make them feel as comfortable at a potluck.

Over the next two days we went to Little Village (the Hispanic area of town, which actually felt like I was in Mexico), Little India, and Chinatown. We were the only white people in all of those places and it was neat to see all the shops and culture so condensed in neighborhoods. After visiting these places each time there was a debrief in which we had great talks about racial reconciliation, immigration, and the challenges in reaching these communities with the love of Christ.

Over all it was a fantastic weekend that really stretched my perception of urban life. The 14 JBU students that went have been impacted and challenged in their perception of the world. I'm really thankful that I was able to go along and to participate in this great learning experience with them.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Driving

This weekend is Fall break here at JBU. I'm helping lead a group of 14 students on an immersion trip to Chicago. We leave in about 4 hours and I still haven't packed. It's about a 10 hour drive and I'll come back home to Carolyn on Tuesday night. Hopefully I'll make it back in time for our final birthing class.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Res Life

Here's the JBU Residence Life staff:

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Final Countdown


It's official. I feel like the countdown can begin, we're ten weeks away from the big due date! Here's Carolyn after church today.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

1st Pick

To quote Greg Rice, "He's injury prone." Greg Oden is out through most of the NBA season with a knee injury (March, maybe whole year). Was it the wrong decision? Personally I don't think it was the wrong pick. Granted I do believe Durant will have an overall more productive career, but you've got to go with the big guy. That's how you win championships in the NBA.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

W 46-26

We had a great time at the game last weekend. Razorbacks defeated Troy in front of about 75,000 rabid Hog fans (Qwest Field in Seattle is 68,000). The culture surrounding Arkansas football was amazing. The whole stadium was a sea of red. There are so many cheers and songs that everyone knew, we felt a little conspicuous not knowing them. With no competing state school, no pro sport teams, and being in the football crazy south it isn't a wonder everyone here is a fan. A very impressive feature of the stadium was the video screen. It was and may still be the largest LED screen in the world and has a incredibly clear and crisp picture (it's just over my shoulder in the picture above).

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Opening Day - Arkansas Style

Carolyn & I are heading to the University of Arkansas Razorback game tonight. It's the first game of the season and it should be high energy. One tradition that happens every kick off for the U of A is the calling of the Hogs. This entails the entire stadium screaming in unison, "Woo Pig Sooie!" I'm very curious to hear it for myself. This link is the best video I could find of it.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Consolidation Perspective


My two alma maters, Western Seminary & Multnomah Bible College, are considering consolidating into one school. It isn't a foregone conclusion that it will happen, but they're seriously considering it. The thought of them being one makes me both happy and sad. The sad comes because it'll seem like I got my Masters from the same place as my undergrad. I can let that issue go fairly easily though.
What makes me happy is that Multnomah won't try and start their own counseling program. Being able to stand alongside Western's established program is the right thing to do. Within Portland there are already too many schools cranking out counselors that can't get jobs (the city isn't big enough to support them all). If the merger goes through it means Multnomah will most likely change to a University model, which will benefit everyone. The only thing that scares me is dropping "biblical" from the institutional name. I hope Bible is kept in the name somewhere simply to keep the vision and purpose at the forefront. There's no point in keeping "Western" in the name because it doesn't mean much. My vote is for Multnomah Biblical University.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Good Day

Today was a great day. It came after a very lazy Saturday. We had some friends over for lunch after church and then went for a little walk. Here's Carolyn while we were out walking:


Being the pure outdoors man that I am we foraged for our dinner while on our walk. Walking on a paved path around town can be really challenging, so we stopped by the local pizza joint and enjoyed our peperoni pizza while sitting on a bench and watching the sun set. I am definately a purist.


Once we got back to campus we went to the Gathering (Sunday night chapel lead totally by students).

This was the first Gathering of the year and the Cathedral was packed. The energy was really high and it's always thrilling to participate in student lead worship.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Yogurt

This from Psychology Today.

Coffee isn't the only breakfast pick-me-up—try yogurt. In a new study, depressed subjects who drank milk with probiotics showed improved mood after 20 days. Author David Benton says cytokines (chemical messengers) produced by the gut may be involved.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Gone Digital

Well, we finally did it. We've said we'd have to get a digital camera before we had a kid for the sake of the grandparents. Carolyn's been saving up for a while now and tonight we made the purchase.

Cold?

Not to bore with details about the weather, but it's just amazing how the lack of heat can make it feel so cool. It is 82 right now and the coolest it's been since we got back to Arkansas three weeks ago. It felt so refreshing to walk out the door tonight and not feel oppressed by the heat.

RA Team

This is my RA team for the year. After spending the morning on the ropes course in 100 degree humidity we then ate 374 wings at Buffalo Wild Wings for dinner. After that we headed to Barnes & Noble where each of the guys picked out a book that represented who they are. It's a good group and we're getting the rest of the freshman moved in today.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Mystery Photo Revealed

The iconic Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo Texas on Route 66.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Sam's Club

We hit Sam's Club today and although it wasn't the first time we'd been there, it was the first time we really compared it to Costco. Everyone says, including myself, that Sam's Club is like Costco. Well my friends, I had the Sam's Club Hot Dog & Soda combo and Sam doesn't even come close to Costco's Hebrew Nationals. Not even close. Costco clearly wins in every category for warehouse stores (except maybe friendly service) and there is simply no comparison.

Chronicles of Narnia

Prince Caspian comes out May 16, 2008.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Road Trip Highlights

At the Grand Canyon with our friend Anna.

Does anyone know where this is (w/o online search)?

Friday, August 03, 2007

19-1

Last year the Blazers had no nationally televised games and the only game I saw was the one I went to over Christmas break. This season there are 19 televised games. Portland will play in the NBA season opener against the Spurs and one on Christmas day against the Sonics (who had the #2 draft pick). I guess having Greg Oden with the #1 pick suddenly makes you attractive to ESPN & TNT.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Home

We're back. I start work tomorrow with a planning retreat with the other RDs. On the way down we finished HP7. It was a great finish to the series. It really ended well. We had a great time with Anna & Caleb. Saw the Grand Canyon-it was bigger than I ever imagined. Really, it felt incomprehensibly large. Carolyn starts work again next week and we're just getting everything unpacked. The thing that stands out the most to me being back is that it's more humid than I remembered, if that is possible.

Wait, Wait

My favorite radio show is NPR's Wait, Wait.....Don't Tell Me. It's a weekly news game show that is very funny. They have a segment of the show that is called "Not My Job," where they bring on a famous person and ask them questions completely unrelated to their Job/life. There have been some great guests over the years ranging from an active Supreme Court Justice to little furry monsters. This week's guest was Jim Dale, who is known for reading the audio versions of all 7 Harry Potter books and giving each character a unique voice. If you've ever listened to HP you should listen to this interview, you may be surprised to hear his normal voice. The funniest guest for me was definitely Keving Clash, the voice of Elmo. To have a listen, follow the links above and on those pages click on the Not My Job link halfway down. I bet you'll laugh.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Day Two: 100° Dessert, Hail, and Cycling

Yesterday was much more adventuresome than anything so far. We continued to listen to HP7 and enjoyed the countryside as we drove around the side of LA and crossed into Arizona on our way to our good friends Caleb and Anna’s house. As we drove through the dessert we saw some small random dark clouds not far ahead with a bunch of lightening with it. We drove straight into a super heavy downpour that cut visibility down to about 50 feet and in the middle there was even hail. We drove through it in about two minutes and it was right back to super hot again. Then, about 7:00 that evening for the first time in over 4,000 miles of driving this summer we had a mechanical issue. It was entirely my fault too. We ran out of gas about 40 miles outside of Phoenix. I was driving and had in my head that we would stop for dinner and get gas at the same time. Since we were listening to Harry Potter I hadn’t paid much attention to how many miles it had been since the gas light came on. In my two previous cars, once it got to empty you still had a solid gallon left.

It turns out Japanese engineering designed E to mean absolutely empty. We passed a station with a Subway and Carolyn didn’t really want that again so I decided to keep going. I looked at the fuel gage and it was on E. I knew there was a town only 15 miles further so we pressed on.

When we got out of the car Carolyn said, “I wish you wouldn’t have pushed it.” She was so gracious, and she wasn’t mad for long at all. I just kept apologizing because I felt dumb and was very impressed by her good attitude. It’s just funny how you get in your head how it’s going to be and we were stopping for dinner so I waited. We were 7 miles past the last station and we weren’t sure how much further to the next. The dessert isn’t the best place to break down, but fortunately we had AAA. Membership expired, no go. Our bikes were in the racks on top of the car. So, we got them down and started riding to the next exit. It was 6 miles to the gas station and I made Carolyn wear the only helmet we had. I went inside the truck stop to buy a gas can and they were all out. There I stood at a gas station, really sweaty, and no way to bring gas back to the car.

I was determined not to have to ride to another gas station so I started looking for large containers. They had gallons of milk and I thought that might do the trick. Then I saw gallons of water for cheaper. So, I bought two gallons of water, dumped them out and filled them up with gas. The sun was setting as I left Carolyn at the gas station to ride back to the car alone. It was a gorgeous ride back with dark silhouettes of gigantic cacti framed by the pink sun set. It very beautiful and so different from any other ride I’ve taken before (also the most dangerous- I didn’t have any lights and I was riding on the side of the freeway).

I arrived at the car to realize I had no effective way to get the gas into the tank. The water jug spouts were just like milk jugs and I couldn’t get it close enough to the actual tank hole. Plus there was that flap in the way. The first ¼ gallon went straight down the side of the car into the dust of the dessert. It just wasn’t working. Thoughts started passing through my head of not getting enough into the tank for the car to start and having to repeat the entire dark road course again. So then I started rummaging through my tool box buried in the back of the car looking for a knife to cut a water bottle into a spout. Of course I couldn’t find it. So I ended up taking a long screw driver to push that little flap up, held the flash light in my mouth to see where I was pouring (it was totally dark now), and used the lid of a yogurt container folded in half as a funnel to get the gas in. It worked albeit very awkwardly and we got to our friends house only 1 ½ hours later than expected. Now I know my car so much better and realize that when the needle gets all the way down to E it means there isn’t anything left.

Road trip Day One: In-N-Out

Well on the first day of our road trip (Wednesday) we drove from Columbia City, OR to Merced, CA. About an 11 ½ drive. It went well and was relatively uneventful. It’s amazing how it feels once you enter California. You just know you’re in a different state from Oregon. Everything feels different and a little funny. It’s different than any other state I’ve driven through lately. The best part though was stopping for dinner at In-N-Out. Good burger and great fries, just an all around classic restaurant.

The time flew buy surprisingly fast because we started listening to the Deadly Hallows. I’m enjoying the story, but my anticipation and nervousness about the ending is almost impeding my attention to the story as it goes.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

It has begun

We started listening to HP7 this afternoon. Got it on CD for the road trip home. We're starting the drive early tomorrow morning. Sad leaving Portland (family/friends that it represents), but glad we can listen to a good story on the way.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Bob Stroller


We bought our stroller last week. We went with the best deal we could find, a BOB Revolution. They run for $359 on Amazon, but we got ours at Costco for $150. After I realized what a good deal it was we went back and bought two more. They sold out super quick in Oregon and we bought the last ones in Tacoma. So, I'm selling the extra two on Ebay and hopefully that profit will pay for ours. We knew we wanted a stroller that could fit the car seat and a jogging stroller. With an attachment this one'll do both and we won't lose so much space in our apartment by having to store two strollers.

Real

I just felt the baby move. I had my head on Carolyn's stomach and our baby girl kicked me. It seems like everyday having a baby gets more and more real. This was definitely a tangible step in that direction.

Monday, July 16, 2007

It's a Girl!

Here is our daughter (with her arm covering her face).



Carolyn's parents came down to Portland to join my Mom, Gramma, Carolyn, and I for the sex discovery ultrasound. It was really sweet. We are having a baby girl. She was very active during the ultrasound. She crossed her legs, waved, and it was just great to see how big she is. We're half way there and after today I feel like I know our child so much better now.

Friday, July 13, 2007

STP

Tomorrow morning Carolyn & I are heading up to Tacoma in preparation for the Seattle to Portland this weekend. I won't lie, I'm a little nervous. I'm riding with Carolyn's brother John and his friend Kristine. Carolyn is going to be the support driver and take us somewhere to sleep on Saturday night. I'm most scared about getting on the bike Sunday morning, realizing that I have to ride another hundred miles and I'm already sore. I'll let you know how it goes.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

HP Movie

It was disappointing. We were in a theater with a really large group of people who were fans of the musical group Harry and the Potters. They were very enthusiastic and when Hagrid first came on screen they all stood up and sang a song about him. It was amusing before the movie started to hear them singing their Harry Potter songs, but during the movie it got annoying. My biggest dissapointment was that during the final fight in the Ministry between Dumbledore & Voldemort the statues didn't protect Harry like in the book. The last two movies have shown Dumbledore to be weak and just getting by. They did however nail the Dolores Umbridge character.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

HP Ending

Saw an article on msnbc by Keith Olbermann about how Deathly Hallows will end the series. He makes a very convincing argument and draws a very interesting conclusion about Harry's scar, that it is actually one of Voldemort's horcruxes. Olbermann's hypothesis would explain a lot about Harry and Voldy being so connected to each other. I also can't wait to see what happens to Snape and the role Neville will play in the end. What is your theory?

Movies

I saw Tranformers last weekend and found it very enjoyable. Loved the cartoon as a kid and they were always one of my favorite toys next to Micro Machines. They did a lot of things well to keep the spirit of Tranformers. They nailed Optimus Prime's voice and persona. Tonight we're off to the HP Order of the Pheonix opening. I'll post later on how that goes.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Good Day

A great day for Rip City. Zach Randolph is gone & Greg Oden is in. Happy day. One way to find out about the Blazers number one pick is by reading his blog, click here for it. I also wholeheartedly agree with Hutch's take on Kevin Pritchard.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Beaver Baseball & Israel

Congrats to Oregon State Baseball for defending their national title and winning two years in a row. Also, Israel had the first professional sports game in 5,000 years. Click here for the details on the Israel Baseball League. During the first game the biggest problem was the announcers figuring out a Hebrew translation for Strike, Home Plate, pitcher, and other key baseball words.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Marriage VI

Today Carolyn & I celebrate our sixth anniversary. I always thought when we first got married that reaching our fifth anniversary would be a great milestone, but the sixth seems bigger. Maby it's because there is a baby on the way, but I sure am thankful for my wife. I can't imagine life without out her and she is such a blessing to me. Marriage has such potential to push you towards growth or tear you down. I definitely have been built up and pushed to grow from Carolyn. To celebrate we're heading to Cannon Beach tomorrow. Needless to say, I'm excited.

Carolyn,

Thanks for being such a great friend and partner. I've enjoyed the last six years of living with you more than any other time in my life. Even during those times when we hated out jobs! Though our lives will never be the same with a baby coming (it's already different) there is nothing in life I want to go through without you, especially parenthood. You'll be a great mom and you're already loving our child by letting baby take over your body. Thank you so much for your respect and support. Your personal sacrifice for us to move to Arkansas and believing in my vision means a lot. Thank you for believing in my dream and for being a part of it. You are an amazing woman and I'm blessed to share life with you.

Happy Anniversary,

Greg

Friday, June 22, 2007

Cardboard Signs

Down in Arkansas there aren't any panhandlers, no one is ever sitting with a sign asking for money at off ramps. I had forgotten how witty some of those signs can be. While in Seattle this week I saw one of my all time favorites, "Father killed by Ninja, need money for karate lessons."

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

ACSD

Well, I've been in Minneapolis since Sunday at the ACSD annual conference. We drove up from Arkansas on Sunday and I was able to bring my bike along. Me and a couple other guys went on a 43 mile ride around town and I quickly realized there really are a lot of lakes here. We got to see a lot of the city and even rode through downtown. It was so nice to just be in a city again. We've had a number of good speakers and only one really bad one. Donald Miller was one of our keynote speakers (not the bad one). It was the second time I've heard him speak, and in this context it was high quality. I did get the feeling he said some things just to push people's buttons, but everyday since then I've had at least two conversations about it so people are conversing about important stuff. One thing is about being here is that I'm a 'professional,' which is weirding me out a little bit. It has been reaffirming that this is a career path I want to pursue. It's also been great, cause Joe Slavens is here. It's been nice catching up with him and how life at MBC is going. The conference ends on Thursday and by Monday night we'll be back in the NW.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Hide & Seek

Who knew? The UN has a commission that is still looking for weapons of mass distruction. The commission has $300 million in reserves funded from Iraqi oil. I thought the world was in agreement that we were wrong about that. The funny thing is, the US & Britain want to shut the commission down, but Russia won't agree to it and on it goes. You can read all about it on MSNBC.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Summer of 3

Last night Carolyn & I went with a bunch of students to watch Pirates 3. It was better than I thought it would be, although much more violent than the first two. If you go see it, be sure to stick around after the credits for a little extra. Last weekend we saw Spiderman 3, and that was disappointing. I've really enjoyed the Spidey films because there was a surprising amount of depth to them. The current one tries to act like it has depth, but it just isn't there. I'm not going to lie, I'm looking forward to Ocean's 3 but am extremely nervous about Shrek (is there much left for the Shrek world to imitate/mock?).

For some time now I've found myself disgruntled (it reached it's maturity back in the LOR trilogy days) by the poor picture quality in theatres . THX has been the standard in theatres for some time and the quality has only increased, but many cinemas still project grainy poor quality pictures. With the influx of home theatre and HD televisions it seemed like it was better just to watch it at home (not that my home has those things, but it's the principle of getting me in the door). Well, last night I've finally been pleased. The theatre used DLP-digital projection. It was fantastic, finally the picture quality matched the sound quality.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Relevant

Portland wound up with the #1 pick in the draft! This is a big deal. As SI.com said, the Blazers are relevant again. Here's a sample from the SI article:

"Portland: Of all the winners Tuesday, Oden may have been the biggest of them all as he will be coached by Nate McMillan, who will buy into his prodigal rookie's defensive and team-minded approach without trying to turn Oden into something he isn't (i.e. a selfish ball-hogging scorer). I foresee a player-coach relationship in Portland not unlike what Tim Duncan and Gregg Popovich have developed in San Antonio. The Blazers, just like that, are relevant again, and ticket sales should no longer be a problem. They might be the youngest team in the playoffs next year, with Oden complementing Zach Randolph beautifully."

Gas Prices

Complaining about gas prices is a favorite past time of most Americans. Here's a little ammunition for your verbal diatribes: An Interactive State-by-State comparison of gas prices based on AAA stats.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Clearly Canadian

I've always had an affinity for Clearly Canadian drinks. When I was a kid growing up in Scappoose, Pizza Vendor was only a few blocks from my house. It is a classic small town pizza joint with dark wood paneling over every single wall. It has those rounded wooden chairs and red plastic cups that are the true mark of a genuine pizza joint. It looks exactly the same to this day. At the Pizza Vendor they served Clearly Canadian, my drink of choice anytime we were there.

Well, last night Carolyn & I were watching Seinfeld and two different times one of the characters was drinking CC (embedded ads aren't completely cutting edge). Both of us came to the realization that it'd been a long time since we'd had CC. So, at 9pm we ventured out on a quest to find it.

I was skeptical that we would be able to find CC, because I've looked at every grocery/convinience store in Siloam Springs for Raspberry Snapple Ice Tea to no avail. However, I love a good adventure and off we went to find this fond drink from childhood. We only had to go about 1/2 hour to find it and tonight we enjoyed it while eating our pizza. Classic.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Excited

We go to the doctor tomorrow afternoon. I'm super excited to see the ultrasound. It'll actually look like a baby now. Very exciting.

Beards

SI has produced the facial hair hall of fame. Check out the best facial hair in sports here. I especially like this one that explains why the eighties are over.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

It's Dr. The Edge to you...

U2's The Edge (aka Dave Evans) received an honorary doctorate while speaking at the Berklee College of Music's commencement last Saturday.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Sasquatch Jerky

I've really been enjoying the Messin' with Sasquatch commercials. Click here to view them. My favorite is "Watch Face."

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Grilling

Grill season is officially open in the Brock house. We've grilled four days in a row and twice today. Mmmm, dinner just got a lot tastier.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

It's Finished

I rode my bike for the first time today. See the previous post on the project here. Before:After:
There were some naysayers out there who didn't think I'd get it done, but overall it came together without too many problems. Now I have to start riding to get ready for the STP.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Karaoke

Tonight Carolyn & I each had a first tonight. I'm the RD for May term (a month of intensive courses on campus) and most of the forty students are part of the Walton International Scholar program. We had a Karaoke night & they managed to get both Carolyn & I to sing. I decided to go with U2-Elevation. Good times.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Playoff Ball

NBA playoffs have been very enjoyable this year, and my horse isn't even in the race. The intensity of play and high skill level is just amazing to watch. I'm loving the Suns vs. Spurs series as well as the great emotional story of Derek Fisher with the Jazz.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Off Campus

Carolyn & I are at Panera right now. We hadn't been off campus for a while and it's nice to get away. We're not doing anything special tonight, just having dinner and hanging out. Carolyn has had a lot more energy which is nice. For a while she pretty much stayed on the couch all the time. She also isn't as nauseated as she used to be, but she has taken to throwing up more frequently. It's about once a day now and never at the same times. Morning, night, afternoon, and sometimes twice a day. Everybody says that once she gets to 12 weeks it'll go away, but that is still two weeks away. She's also switched from ginger ale to lemonade as the best source of relief.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Summertime

It feels like summer here at JBU. The semester is over and graduation is tomorrow. Most students have already left and I can't believe the first year here is already over. The weather today and through the weekend is in the eighties, so it feels like it's actually summer now. With the nice weather yesterday Carolyn & I played a round of Folf (Frisbee golf) around campus, but I got my disc stuck on the roof of a building. I'll try to get it back eventually.

Carolyn's Story

FYI: Carolyn has started her own blog. Check it out here. It's also availalbe in the links section on the right.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

OKC Memorial

This morning I woke up at 4:45 and headed into downtown Oklahoma City. There were 15,000 runners with 5,000 volunteers. Throughout the course people were outside cheering us on and saying "Thank You" in appreciation. The race went really well. I had debated whether to run with friends the whole time or push myself to see what I could do. So, I stayed with friends for the first two miles at a slow pace then took off making up a lot of time up until about mile 7. After mile 7 I got tired and from then on it was a challenge just to keep a steady pace. My stretch goal was to get in at 2 hours 10 minutes. I made it at 2:09:48. Carolyn was a great encourager & I saw her three different times on the course, which always made me feel like I had a little more energy.

It was a surprisingly emotional experience. Crossing the finish line felt great and I feel privileged to have been apart of something so meaningful to the city. We experienced the Bombing Memorial site two different times and it was incredible. If your ever in OkC you have to check it out.

I still don't consider myself a runner, but it is a good feeling to go from "I hate running" to completing a half-marathon at a personally challenging pace.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Eye Level

Came across this one while cleaning off my memory card.

The only time I've been eye level with a giraffe, it posed for just about 2 feet from me (at the St. Louis Zoo).

Race Day

It's only two days out from the big race. I'm excited to run it, though sad to loose my running partner. Carolyn isn't going to run this year and I've found it hard to keep a steady pace without her. We've been training together up unti labout three weeks ago, we'll see how it goes.

Good News

I'd like to introduce you to our child:

It's true, Carolyn is pregnant! The due date is December 2nd. We're pretty excited. She's in her 9th week & has not been feeling the best. She's pretty tired & nauseated, but if you'd like to hear more about her check out her new blog: Story of my life.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Good News of the Day

Tonight I had the joy of talking with my good friend Allen (from the Multnomah days). We came to the realization that I wouldn't see him before he & his family moves to Boston where he'll be attending Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. They leave for a vacation drive/move across country at the end of May and we'll miss them by only two weeks. They just so happen to be stopping in Minneapolis on June 6 which is where I'll be for the ACSD conference that week. I'm so glad that I'll be able to see the Hutchison family one more time before they set up in New England.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Home Alone

Carolyn's mom came to visit this week, which is fantastic. First time we've seen family since Christmas. However, Carolyn and her mom have been gone since Thursday to a womens conference in Chattanooga, TN. They'll be back on Monday.

Having the place to myself hasn't been too bad and I'm not bored yet. I've been working on putting my bike together and played frisbee all day today. JBU is hosting an Ultimate tournament this weekend and we were out in the mid-80 degree sun playing all day. I'm pretty tired and think I'll be sleeping early tonight.

Seafront property for sale in Utah

According to Astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse, the earth is going to be visited by an unfriendly asteroid the size of the Rose Bowl. It’s named Annabis, after the Egyptian god of death and darkness. On Friday the 13th of April 2029 it’s approach will bring it closer to earth than our orbiting communication satellites. There is a one in 45,000 chance it will hit the earth.

Where will it hit you ask? The Pacific Ocean, about 311 miles off the coast of Santa Monica. Just thought I'd let you know.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Free Cone Day

Ben & Jerry's is having their annual free cone day today! This will be only the second time I've missed it since my senior year at Multnomah. Visit between 12-8 today. Check www.benjerry.com for a location near you.

For those in PDX: downtown location always has a shorter line than Hawthorne. By the way, I highly recommend their Heath Bar Crunch.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Play Ball

From SI.com with the caption: "We guess you don't"

Badger

I just realized that my last name, Brock, means badger. I'm not sure how I feel about that. I'll have to find some cool characteristic of the Badger that is noble or something. It comes from Old English & is of Celtic origins, so that's cool.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Readers like Sports

The National Endowment for the Arts conducted a longitudinal study (studying same group over an extended period of time) on Americans reading habits. Some not surprising conclusions were made like the fact that there is a significant decline in reading at all levels.

The surprising discovery was that there is a strong correlation between the act of reading and attendance at sporting events. Listed under #2 of the 10 key findings is “Literary readers and arts participants engage in sports more readily than non-readers and non-participants.” Literary readers are nearly two times as likely to attend sports events. Click here for a pdf of the Reading at Risk report.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Refreshed

Today is a good old fashioned rainy day; just grey and lightly raining since I got up this morning. It seems like it never rains here and having a whole day be rainy a real treat for me. Who knew you could miss rain?

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Stavesacre

"Stavesacre as we know it, is done." Just read this post from their blog dated February 27th.

Goodbye old friends, thanks for the music.

PS-Joel, thanks for introducing me.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Taxes

Done. We went to Sonic & got a shake to celebrate.

Final Results

Jed is the only one who picked Florida and held onto his lead. Here are the final standings:

1. Jed 1450
2. Carolyn 1030
3. Hutch 930
4. Greg R. 920
5. Greg B. 890
6. John 860

Well done to all. Jed, your super prize will be on it's way soon.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

How Things Change

With only two teams left, there has been incredible changes in the standings. I've stayed in first or second place the whole tournament. Carolyn has been last the whole tournament, now things have changed:

Person:Total Points:Possible Points Remaining
1. Jed :1290:160
2. Carolyn :1030:160
3. Hutch :930:160
4. Greg R. :920:160
5. Greg B. :890:0
6. John :860:0

Friday, March 30, 2007

Undomesticated Produce

This spring, as the grass has turned green I've noticed these strange long tufts of green randomly growing across the quad. In fact they're all across town. This afternoon, I found out what it is: Wild green onions. It's true. Scattered about the landscape here in NW Arkansas, wild green onions. Dinner just got a little more tasty.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

A Great Pair of Socks

Does anything satisfy your toes more than a comfy pair of socks? Now what if those same socks were also the best pair you've ever worn for running & exercise. That's what you get with:


The place where I like to buy them is Sierra Trading Post. I highly recommend the Adrenaline line.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

10 Minutes A Day


Carolyn picked this up a couple months ago at Walmart and I've started using it this week. It's great. You can customize you workout from 5 different 10-minute sessions. My favorites are Pilates for Abs & Pilates for Flexibility. Easy enough to learn first time through & complex enough that it'll be a good source of challenging exercises for some time. Only $9.99 at Amazon.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Jed Dominates

This round goes to Jed. He is the only one to pick all four winners into the final four. He had at least double the points of anybody else. So here is how it the cookie has crumbled.

Who:Total Points:How many of final four picked right
1. Jed: 1,050:All four!
2. Greg B.: 890:2/4
3. John: 860:2/4
4. Hutch: 810:1/4
5. Greg R.: 800:2/4
6. Carolyn: 790:2/4

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Tourney Update

Now that the Elite Eight is decided, here are the standings with a three way tie for first:

Who:Total Points:Possible Points Remaining
1. Jed:730:700
1. Greg B.:730:620
1. Hutch:730:240
4. John:700:-100 (I don't know how this is possible, to have negative?)
5. Greg R.:640:500
6. Carolyn:630:580

Every other year I've done a bracket, there has been greater separation. This is definitely the closest I've been a part of. It's still open for many different people to win.

Friday, March 23, 2007

End of St. Louis

We're back from St. Louis & we arrived home to find my bike frame had arrived in the mail. I've been spending a lot of time looking up parts & prices to realize it'll be a long while before it's road ready. On Wednesday before we headed for home we visited the Gateway Arch. It's taller than the Space Needle & is the largest National Monument. The so called "tram" that you ride up in is more like a capsule that they stuff five people into. It was shockingly small, maybe 5 ft. high & wide. After four minutes cozily stuffed into it with perfect strangers we arrived at the top viewing area. It was a windy day and it was shaking the whole time we were up there. The view was great, but I still couldn't stand up straight. Glad we got to experience it, but I'm not dying to do it again. I also took for granted that it isn't that old. It was build in the mid 60s & is quite an architectural marvel.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Red Blitz

Coke's latest version of Vault: Red Blitz. I already liked vault, this adds a little sweetness to the citris. It's more berry than cherry and I like it.