Sunday, March 23, 2008

Easter thoughts

I am feeling pretty stoked right now. I have been just thinking about how good life is. It is a good thing to be grateful, and an experience with the kids tonight made me want to record it. We had a great Easter Sunday. We got some goodies from the Easter bunny, went to church, listened to a great musical presentation by the ward choir. I had a wonderful lesson with my 15 year old Sunday school class. They make me stoked. Such great kids and have such a great grasp of what life is all about. They each shared their favorite scripture that is related to Easter. Wasn't like it could be with some kids. No pulling teeth(intentional pun). Every single one of them just freely shared why they are grateful for The Savior Jesus Christ. I feel their strength in their testimony. No way I was that solid at their age. It makes me think we have a bright future ahead.
We had a great salmon dinner with Kim's sister and family. Wonderful meal and great company. I love having them so close. It means alot to our family. Then I called my grandma who just might be one of the most grateful and giving people I know. I always am in a better mood after talking to her. It doesn't hurt that she is a typical grandma and thinks her grandson can do no wrong. I really want to be that way after I talk to her. I think she knows that, which is why she is so encouraging. She wants the best for her family is wise enough to know the best way to motivate others is with positive reinforcement. What a great lady.

We then went to the Bakers for a baby blessing. They are some friends in the ward. Rob is one of my surfing buddies. We got to just get to know some of their friends and family better. Afterward we came home, got the kids all ready for bed and then just before prayer I said that we have alot to be thankful for, maybe we should each mention. So Jeddy busts out in the most sincere way that he is really thankful for mom and dad getting him a nice Easter shirt to wear to church and that he was thankful he had a mom and dad. I expected something like 'thankful for my candy' and the same from Madisen. They spent the next several minutes just going back and forth on things they were really thankful for. Mostly family, but Madisen also threw in that she was thankful that Jesus sacrificed so we could live again. It was just one of those moments where I realized that life just doesn't get any better than that. I feel so very fortunate.

This probably has something to do with a surf session my other surfing buddy and neighbor Dan-o and I had on Saturday. It was just the best one ever. We saw 4 dolphins, the sky was perfect blue, the view of Tamarack's coast line was picture perfect and we just kept catching wave after wave. Dan-o especially, he's both a generous and a smart surfer and he catches a ton of waves. But I caught my fair share too. More than ever. And more good long rides than ever. Waves weren't real big, but they were very nicely shaped, and very ride able. It was just the best session I have had. Dan-o and I were still buzzing about it later that day, and I think I am still buzzing about it.

I am just telling my wife I can never do a short blog. This was meant to be one believe it or not. But the point is, while I was surfing, I just felt grateful to be living life. I think surfers call it 'stoked'. And I think that must have rubbed off to my kids or something, cuz they were just so 'stoked' also. I heard this quote that seems true"Gratitude leads to joy and happiness, just as joy and happiness lead to gratitude and contentment". A very wise thought and I will end on that.

Friday, March 14, 2008

We found perfection!

Welcome to it, you'll love it. The locals call it Seagrove and Powerhouse Park. It's in Del Mar. I prefer perfect. Seagrove Park has a great kids playground, with sand box, bucket swings and regular swings. Adjacent to it sits Powerhouse park, with its rocky cliffs and smooth beaches lined with a well groomed putting green lawn. Not least are the amenities, clean bathroom, community center trails for scooter races and great tasting sand- so far this is Benson's favorite sand.

A couple weeks ago we went exploring for something new to do in town. We got lost and ended up here. And to think we were going to get some books at Borders. I am glad we got lost. We rode scooter around the sidewalks, petted all the friendly dogs, played at the play ground that overlooks the beach, ran races on the lawn, rolled down the sand dunes, strolled on the beach and the walk way, enjoyed snacks at the pavilion, and Jeddy's favorite was the grand view of the coaster train. After Benson was done 'snacking' on the sand and the kids had filled their pockets and hair with sand we headed for Swami's cafe to end the adventure perfectly with fresh fruit smoothies.

A friend of mine (she is a professional blogger) has a regular post 'Fabulous item of the week'. this is my attempt at that. However I don't post that frequently and do not have that many exciting things to pass on to my readers, so this is My Fabulous item of the year. And I hope to enjoy it for many many years to come. If this feels like an advertisement, it is sort of. We love visitors. Ben's sister Caroline and her husband Mark were just in town and we always feel like we are on vacation when people visit. So if your interested in a day/week/ afternoon like this come visit, there is always room at the Carlsbad five Inn.

Crazy Hair Day

It is crazy hair day at Madisen's Elementary school. With the skills and talents of her Aunt Caroline she participated in High Fashion.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

I miss The Dogg

No this is not about my old schnauzer, Marty, though he will always be my favorite pet no matter what. I seriously think that if I emulated Marty I would be in the Celestial Kingdom with room to spare. But that post will have to be another day. I am referring to another Dogg, BJ Chestnut. He was my best friend since high school, and he died about 3 and half years ago. I miss him everyday. That said, I feel like the luckiest guy to have known him. Every so often I get on the computer and look things up that remind me of him. Usually music, but also sports and well, music. He loved music. It was his passion. So I want to blog about BJ and music for a bit.

He and I had the same tastes in music for the most part .Whenever I got a tip from BJ about a band, I could always count on it being someone I would love. It is kind of like people who are bad dressers so they have other people pick out their clothes. Maybe I'm a bad dresser (t-shirt, shorts and flip flops is all i ever wear if i can), but that is beside the point. I think I have good taste in music, but BJ had great taste in music and when he found it, he let me know, and I would be hooked. I dont always have the time to find new artists, so BJ found them and let me in. ....................small tangent, Jeddy just woke up and wanted water. He is so cute. I love my kids. I'm so lucky...........It was usually really emotionally powerful stuff that he was into. Coldplay, Dashboard Confessional, Jeff Buckley, to name a few. But I always think of him when I hear certain songs, especially those artists. One in particular is Jeff Buckley's 'Hallelujah'. Here is a link if you havent heard it.

I also find some physical resemblance to BJ, though no resemblance on Jeff's voice. BJ was a great looking guy but kind of tone retarded when he sang. This is kind of how it is in sports. Most great coaches were just average players. The reverse can also be true. They know how the game is supposed to be played though so they are amazing at seeing talent and putting it to work, they just can't do it themselves. BJ knew he couldn't sing. But he absolutely envied those that could. I can't sing either, so he felt comfortable singing around me. And I have to say, one of us always really enjoyed it. Him.

Well, this week I was flipping through the tv and saw on American Idol that one of the finalists was singing this song, Hallelujah. It made me think of BJ. I only caught the end of it and was unimpressed. But even Simon said it was great so I figured I should look it up and see how he was. Well, I just youtubed it and found it. He did do a nice job. Then for about an hour(if you are wondering where I get all this time, Kim is on a ladies weekend in San Diego with her sisters and mom.) I watched videos of Jeff Buckley, just thinking of The Dogg, and wondering if he and Jeff are hanging out(Jeff Buckley's life and career were cut short. He drowned back in 1997). If you know BJ, you know he had kind of a lot of man crushes so he is probably hanging out with him or Elvis. He is probably looking forward to seeing that dude from EFY who had the great teeth. He loved that guy. Now, don't be confused, BJ was completely hetero, but I guess he just had enough confidence to let the rest of us know when he thought a guy was good looking. I don't know if any of us were real comfortable with that, but it was always a nice time making fun of him for it.

Anyway, back to the point. I was watching Jeff Buckley videos and checked out BJ's original blog site he created back before I even knew what a blog was. I read some posts and it made me want to get in touch with someone he and I were friends with. I sent her an email. She emailed back. I hope if she reads this post that she knows BJ is probably looking out for her up there. Then I decided to check the blog of another friend who left a comment on BJ's old blog. I went to her blog and it blew me away. She had just written a post about the very same performance on American Idol that made me think of BJ in the first place.

So here I am. Full circle. I've got the music on and I can't go to bed until I let you know some of what makes me miss The Nutter every day. This is one of those blogs that are more therapeutic than anything else. I miss him. I really think we are supposed to love deeply those around us in this life. I have never had a friend who loved deeper everyone they knew. He wasn't selective. He may not have gotten along with everyone all of the time, like when he punched me really hard while we were driving to a wedding. Almost crashed. Or when he and Jake dragged me out of our house at 1 am in the freezing cold winter Utah weather, trying to take my clothes off along the way out. There was also the time that he tried to hook up with my wife, but at least that was before we were dating. I have to admit, even the things that drove me nuts about BJ, I miss. He was the best. I don't really want to see him any time soon, maybe 70 years or something. I just hope when I do, he will be able to break away from Jeff so we can hang out. That's all for now. Love ya Dogg.