Monday, January 28, 2008

It really is that simple.

Gordon B. Hinckley, 15th president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints passed away last night at the age of 97. I've never read a quote from him that I disagreed with - he truly was a speaker of truth, and without a doubt was in every way, a man of God.

But my niece Lisa pointed out a quote from a talk he gave in October of 2004 that I'd not heard before, and it struck me in the profound, head-smack kind of way:

"If every husband and every wife would constantly do whatever might be possible to ensure the comfort and happiness of his or her companion, there would be very little, if any, divorce. Argument would never be heard. Accusations would never be leveled. Angry explosions would not occur. Rather, love and concern would replace abuse and meanness."

Look at the thousands of books, seminars, lectures, retreats, conferences, videos and counselors dedicated to teaching husbands and wives to get along. Then read that quote again. Why do we always make things so complicated?

President Hinckley, we thank you for the words of wisdom. You will be dearly missed.

p.s. Thanks, Lisa!

Christmas Eve Was SO Fun!

Ok, I know the timing for that headline is a tad delayed, but it WAS fun! I put up a bunch of pictures from Christmas over on the Brinkerhoff Offspring (or Brinkerhoffspring) blog - check it out at

Snow Time!

I was sleeping beautifully this morning, when the phone rang at about 5:08 am. It was the school district, saying that school would be 2 hours late today. In disbelief, I jumped up and looked out the window, and saw...

OK, first, I was surprised we had snow. Yesterday was gorgeous, and we saw that our Krokuses were starting to pop up and bloom. In fact, I planned to take a picture and blog that Spring was just around the corner. Now this...

Second, I thought, this is why the Seattle area has such a wussy reputation. You can see that the grass isn't even covered all the way, and yet it's a 2 hour delay. Urg.

But the kids loved it, as they are contractually obligated to do.

Here, Ellysa and Kaylee are taking snow off my car - of course, they didn't take any off the driver's side of the windshield, which was still totally covered when it came time to go to work... Thanks, girls!! =) A few minutes later, I think Kaylee was wearing most of what they DID take off the car.

And now the sun is out, and they're finally at school. But they're predicting snow again tomorrow...

Tales From The Road IV

I meant to post this one right after we got back. Then I forgot. And did a bunch of other stuff. And then this morning I went throgh the memory card on our carmera and found this shot from a rest area in northern California.

I loved the picture of the coiled snake, and that after all the scary talk, the revolution that "reasonable watchfulness should be sufficiend to avoid snakebite".

But as I was taking the picture, a guy who was walking past said that because of that sign, his wife wouldn't get out of the car. Too bad, cuz it was a good 60 miles to the next rest area, and it was certainly not summer, and it was night, so I'm sure there was nothing to be afraid of. Cindy, for example, boldly walked right past any would-be attacking snakes, showing them that they're not the boss of her!

Friday, January 25, 2008

Now these are my kind of campaign promises!!

One of the stations I flip between on my drive home has decided to discourage my listening by playing Jay Leno's monologue from the night before, a few minutes after 5 every day. Pretty much always as I'm sitting in the traffic jam where 705 merges with I-5, and then 16. I've said for years that Leno just isn't funny, but I really haven't experienced it for myself ever since I came to that conclusion, easily over ten years ago. Now I have a daily reminder. And since the writers strike, and he's supposedly writing his own material, it's gotten even worse. And they bill it as "America's Favorite Monologue!"


C'mon Jay... It's bad enough that you're 100% un-funny, but then to rub it in, Letterman is still putting out pure gold on a regular basis. Case in point? Last night, he had Barack Obama on to deliver the Top-10 List, a list of his top campaign promises.

My personal favorite items are:

You know that won't require any supreme court debating!!

Letterman's reply said it all: "That's an innovative campaign promise..."

I bet even the scary apple fanboys will agree that this is a good idea!

Now there's something this country has needed for many years!

Throughout the segment, Barack comes off very much like other politicians I've seen on the talk show circuit, kinda stiff, trying too hard to fit the role of funny, personable, "normal guy/gal" candidate. But Letterman's responses, timing, the whole atmosphere he creates in his show, makes a final product that is way greater than the sum of its components.

See the whole clip

More Disneyland Pictures!

I can't believe it's been almost a month already since we were in the Happiest Place on Earth... But looking at the pics again sure helps to keep the feeling alive! These are from New Year's Eve, when it was sunny and 75 at the California Adventure, but by nightfall the wind had kicked up so bad that they ended up cancelling the fireworks. You can see in the pic where we're standing in front of the Flower-Mickey, the flag in the background is waving so hard and fast that it's just a blur.

Farewell, Disneyland. We'll be back soon!

Funny, Sad, and True.

*click picture for full size image*

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Let's Rock!

OK, so here's Part Two of my plea for more Wii friends. Our nephew Mathew has not only swapped friend codes with us, he also got Guitar Hero III, so we can rock each other's socks off! But here's the thing: Not only do we need to swap console friend codes, we also need to swap Guitar Hero III friend codes. We've done it, but in case anyone else has the game, I'm gonna throw our code up here to spread the Rock as far and wide as possible!

The Brinkerhoff Guitar Hero III Online Code: 044418044927.

Please make a note of it!

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Wii Need More Friends!

I knew when I was waiting outside Fred Meyer at 5am on November 19, 2006, that it would take a while for enough people I know to join the Wii Party. And the supply issues haven't helped any... But now it's starting to seem like everyone who really wants one has one, so I'll just put out a little reminder that Sharing is Good! And with games supporting online multiplayer finally starting to come out, it's the time to beef up the Wii address book in order to share the good times.

So here once again, is our Wii code:


The way Nintendo set it up, it only works if both sides register each other, so if you want to join up, put your info in the comments and I'll get it entered on our end.

P.S. I got Guitar Hero III for Christmas, and would LOVE some online play...

December Takes its Toll

The 2007 Holiday Season was a great time, no doubt about it! Hosting Thanksgiving at our house, Christmas Eve at my uncle Richard's, the week long California Adventure... All good!!

But what's not so good? Well, I'd spent pretty much all of 2007 convincing my body that it needs to be in better shape. All in all, I held on to a net loss of around 17 pounds for the year, but that figure had been well over 20 in Early November. But I guess as long as I have a year-to-year loss, it's all progress, so I won't get too down on myself.

The thing that really surprised me wasn't that I gained weight - I knew that was happening, as all the new clothes I proudly bought were getting tight and much less comfortable. The real shock was just how fast my stamina got up and left. Checking my fitness log (see the "Mike's Fitness Progress" link at the top right) I see that I had been quite disciplined in my working out right up to November 19. Then, only three days between then and yesterday.

Yesterday! Yep, back on the train, baby! I hit the Y at lunchtime, planning to do my normal mon-wed-fri routine. Before the break, I'd run between 8 and 16 laps (.5-1 mile) then do three full circuits in the weight room. Yesterday, I got 4 laps and one circuit, and I was wishing I'd brought an inhaler along.

Just to punish myself enough that myabe I won't let it slip so bad again, I got up at 4:30 this morning and played Racketball with a friend from church. Ouch. But we'll do it again Thursday, and I'm really hoping that the accountability factor of partnering with a friend will make it easier to stick with.

In 2007 I resolved to get in better shape, and even after this setback, I'm in better shape than I've been in over 15 years. 2008 WILL see me complete the trek to my final goal, hopefully before summer, so I can spend summer solidifying healthy habits. Wish me luck!!