Thursday, July 31, 2008

Yesterday I was sitting at work when I had an A.D.D. moment. In the midst of making sure pictures used in the Johnson Home guide are out of copyright or otherwise useable, I started thinking about names I like if/when I should ever get married, and if/when I should ever have kids. Random. This is me:

Hmmm, I really like such and such names...Oh look two of them start with a 'b' - Beck and Bauer.

So maybe if I have twin boys I can name them Beck and Bauer.

:: pause ::

tee hee, then when I introduce them to people I'll say their names really fast together so it'll sound like one long name. "These are my twins, Beckenbauer." he he, snort, he he, can't hold in the laughter...

...and no one will get the joke.

Then I'll have to explain that Franz Beckenbauer was one of the greatest soccer players of all time and practically invented the sweeper position.

Hmmm, I think I can handle that. Therefore, if I have twins I shall name them Beck and Bauer. So let it be written so let it be done.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Yesterday was a great day. I went to work for half the day then headed down to BYU for the 2008 Richard Bushman Seminar. The conference touched on "controversial" historical issues and how we can effectively explain them to those struggling with their faith as well as how we should approach such subjects in institute and BYU religion classes. The conference touched on issues such as the failure of The Kirtland Safety Society, The Kinderhook plates, Freemasonry, plural marriage, Joseph Smith and the supernatural, and changes to printed revelations. I think I'll type up my notes from the conference on my blog, but I'll leave that for another post, for now just know that it was very good. There wasn't a ton of new information, but I appreciated the new framework given to the old information.

After the conference I went to my old work at eWB , talked with BP for a while, then Kelli, Amy, Jillian and I went to Jason's Deli for dinner. It was so good to catch up with all of their lives and let them know what's going on in mine. I just love everyone there and appreciate their friendship so much.

Then I met up with Julie and Mike, Keith, Kyle and his girlfriend, and BJ and Jewel for dinner. Mike and Julie are moving to Oregon this week and we wanted to get together with them before they go. They decided to go to dinner at Goodwood, which is o so good, but I had just eaten so I just mooched a little off of BJ's plate.

At about 8:45 I left for my hockey game at Seven Peaks (I was subbing for my friends) and BJ, Jewel, Mike, Julie, and Melissa came to watch. Man, I was dogging it at the end! I think it was a combination of me not having played a game in a couple of months, only playing softball in the meantime, and the fact that everyone on the team were taking like 3 minute shifts!! And it wasn't that we were hurting for people either, we had 3 full forward lines. I kept telling them 1 minute shifts at the most! But whatever, we won 4-1, and it was apparently their first win of the season, woohoo! I miss playing hockey in Provo so much, I made so many friends. It's like when you play hockey you're part of this little community and it's great!

After the game the 6 of us went to the malt shop down the street from our old stomping grounds (The Glenhood) and according to BJ, "my personality was really coming out." Translation: "Meghan, you're acting like your crazy right now but I like it 'cause it's funny."

(p.s. I'm kind of ticked at myself that I brought my camera and didn't take a single picture of the day so sorry).

I got home at about 1 a.m. this morning so needless to say, I'm pretty tired. But no worries, I had such a good time!!

Oh, except for the parking ticket I got! I can't believe I forgot about that! I really thought during the summer at BYU you could park anywhere on campus, but my friend Ben informed me (after the fact) that you can park most places on campus but you still have to have a parking pass. Ohhhhh. But apparently I would have still gotten the ticket even if I had one of those thingy's because do I park in the "regular" parking? No. I mean, I drive a Mercedes right? There's no parking with little Ford Escorts in the student car section of the parking lot. Nu-uh, I go for the big cheese. I hang out with the faculty vehicles, cause that's where I belong. And I paid $30 for it.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Memories that stick

*The day Preston decided to run away. Don't worry he had his Ninja Turtle suitcase packed up with clean undies to boot! He only went about 4 houses down before he came back.

*Stepping in my mom's Christmas pie just as she was about deliver it to a friend (and of course, also right after she told me to wait for her before I got out of the car because the pie was right there on the floor).

*"Dadu for the ice-cream! 3-4-5..."

*Running to dad when he came home from work.

*The time I broke my finger in Kindergarten playing football.

*The numerous times my mom had to rub peanut butter in my hair to get out the gum that I wasn't supposed to be chewing anyway.

*Our trip back east when I was 7.

*The time mom's water broke in the middle of the night when she was pregnant with Mallory and we had to get up and go to the hospital.

*"Psee psee time." No explanation.

*Going to get Thrifty ice cream with mom.

*The night BJ sat and talked with me in the doorway of my room because all the kids at school were talking about Bloody Mary and it was starting to scare me.

*The time the power went out at my Grandpa Hunt's cabin. With no TV or music to distract us from each other, we just sat around the fireplace and listened to stories.

*Hog-ties (dad would get on all fours and try to grab us and get all of us underneath him at the same time.

*My Grandma Mathews cracking her gum.

*Rehearsing and performing our Christmas "plays".

*The time I accidentally wrote on my mom's white couch after she had specifically told me to "put the lid on the pen because you might write on the couch." Wow, I was scared for my very life. I waited outside by the pool for hours while my mom tried to clean it off and seriously wondered if I would have to sit out there and beg for rations the rest of my existence.

*Mirage employee days at Wet 'n' Wild, and especially going on the Black Hole with dad.

*Modeling shoes for Nine West kids. One time this guy told me that the next year they were coming out with shoelaces that had lights on them. Boy, I thought I was in on some big, important secret.

*The Golden Nugget Buffet.

*Steve Sitar's soccer referee classes: "The ENTIRE ball must cross the ENTIRE line!" And teaching us the importance of looking people in the eyes when you shake their hand.

*Mom playing the piano and singing, especially the song "How Will They Know?"

*One of the first nights we stayed in our apartment between houses, I woke BJ up and told him I was scared. He let me sleep with him and made sure I slept next to the wall so that if anyone came to get me they would get him first.

*The time I got on the wrong tram at McCarran Airport and started crying because I thought I had lost my family for good.

*The time I almost got hit by a car while riding my bike.

*Going to my mom and dad's Mirage company softball games and playing with the bottle caps that...why in the HECK were we playing with BOTTLE CAPS? Can you say, NO sanitation whatsoever?? Anyway, one time while I was the bat girl I ran out before the play was over and almost got run over by the runner coming into home plate. I've never seen my dad move that fast! "Never go out before the play's over!" Ya, learned that lesson.

*The night we watched "The Fugitive" for the first time. I was nervous about the one-armed man, so my mom gave me a club to sleep with that night. I was 8.

*Watching Super Bowl's at Uncle Stan's house while eating the famous Stanburgers. I especially remember 1995 when the 49ers beat the Chargers, but I even remember slightly the 1990 Super Bowl when they beat the Broncos. Uncle Stan likes the Broncos. Haha.

*Late night walks with my dad and having to run a few steps every once in a while just to keep up with his long legs.

*Mom's Christmas Eve Party's.

*The Gould's dog. Darn thing scared me half to death.

*Garside pool...ugh.

*Family gatherings at Leatherby's.

*The car accident.

*The time my Aunt Paula graciously offered to make my homecoming dress. It looked great, the only problem was we didn't finish it in time. After I was already an hour late for the date we decided there wasn't time to sew on the buttons so she sewed me into the dress and off I went.

*The state cross country meet my freshman year of high school. I got second place and honestly, I don't think I realized at the time how great it was.

*The time Preston baptized me in the Salt Lake Temple.

*The night I won the Female Athlete of the Year award for my high school. I'll never forget the cheer that went up when they announced my name, I've never felt so loved.

*The day BJ got home from his mission. It was crazy. Preston and I were given the opportunity to go on a church history tour. The only catch? We had to miss our high school graduation. No problem, we had a class of 860 and I didn't want to sit through it anyway. So the morning of BJ's homecoming we went to the school to pick up our cap and gown (that we weren't going to use), then went to the airport to pick BJ up, came home for a little get together with family, and 2 hours later we were back at the airport to leave for two weeks on our tour. Talk about "hi and goodbye!"

*Magic Mountain.

*Each time my team won State. Soccer and Cross Country were particularly sweet because I felt I played a big role.

*Running a 17:59 5k at Dana Hills. Man I love that course! I also got a free shirt for correctly guessing my time. Confession: I slowed down just slightly at the end so I could win the shirt.

*The time Coach Weitz was so mad during practice she kicked the basketball up and it got stuck in the rafters. We tried hard not to laugh because we knew she was mad. But we relaxed after she couldn't hold in the laughter either.

*The State basketball tournament my freshmen year when we got in trouble for staying up too late. Coach Weitz made us do 10 pushups and 10 star jumps? (whatever they're called, pretty much another form of push up) for every person on the team. There were 12 of us. You do the math.

*Riding the Sahara roller coaster 16 times in one night.

*The night my mom called and told me my Grandma Mathews had passed away.

*September 11, 2001.

Definitely worth it

I have now seen The Dark Knight 3 times in one week, twice in IMAX. Was it worth it? Yes it was.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Calvin and Hobbes

I'm just wondering if this reminds my parents of anyone? Maybe...someone that when they were "learning" to swim might have scratched her dad really hard while clinging to him for dear life and yelled "LIFEGUARD!!!" so loud that everyone in the public pool contemplated calling social services? I'm not sure though.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

The Dark Knight

We went to the midnight showing on Thursday night and all I have to say is...WOW! Seriously, words cannot explain the awesomeness of this film. The thing is a masterpiece. Genius. Two thumbs up to the brothers Nolan for superb writing and directing (and if I had any more thumbs they could have those too). The movie was action packed, featured a nice little complicated love triangle, and had a complex, yet never confusing plot. But what I liked best was all the moral and ethical questions raised in the movie. What would you do in such a situation? The Joker revels in putting people into lose-lose situations, pitting their inclination to do good to their fellow man with their darwinistic, survival of the fittest tendencies. So good. And Heath Ledgers version of the Joker is unmatched. I agree with one reviewer who said that as amazing as Jack Nicholson's Joker was, this new Joker makes it look like "child's play" in comparison.

BJ dressed up for the show. Did you expect anything less? With his talent why would you not?? Here are some pics.

He was turning heads all over the theater, and even scared a couple of girls so bad they nervously giggled and told him to "Stop looking at me, you're creepy!" The only thing that makes me sad is that he never really got a chance to show off his mastery of the voice, he's been working on it since the first preview came out.

More about "the voice": I read one review that gave excerpts of an interview with Christopher Nolan. Nolan said Heath Ledger came to him and said he'd had an epiphany about The Joker character:

"The key to the demented killer, Ledger said, was his voice. Without a menacing hiss, it would be a retread of Jack Nicholson's satirical turn when he played the character in 1989.

"He said he found the perfect one," Nolan recalls. "He had been studying ventriloquist dummies and thought they had terrifying voices. He was going to emulate one. I remember saying, 'Yeah, that sounds great.' When I hung up the phone I thought, 'God, I hope that's going to work.' "

Well I'm here to tell you Christopher Nolan...It worked!

But enough about The Joker. I definitely don't want to downplay the other characters who were just as brilliant in their own right. Batman is a much deeper and more complex character and Christian Bale definitely delivers. Aaron Eckhart is perfect as Harvey Dent. He's so like-able that at the end you don't know whether to fear him or sympathize with him. And newcomer Maggie Gyllenhaal pulled off the part of Rachel Dawes without a hitch. As always, Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, and Gary Oldman gave flawless performances. Basically, GO SEE THE MOVIE! I often worry about hyping up a movie too much for fear someone will be disappointed. Not a problem with this movie. You will NOT be disappointed. I can count on probably one finger the number of movies that have actually lived up to all the hype. Well, The Dark Knight not only lives up to the hype, it exceeds it.

(Read a good review here)

Here's a sample of Heath Ledger as the Joker.:

And just in case you haven't seen it, here's one of the trailers:


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

"For the love....where is the 4th of July post?" - Love, Becca

So here's my 4th of July post...3 weeks after the fact. I know you probably don't care anymore, but oh well, here it is anyway. And a special thanks goes to Becca for cyber-kicking my butt (see title of the post) and making me finally do this post.

A couple of years ago we discovered one of the best kept secrets of 4th of July celebrations...Sis. Hall's Lewiston, Utah 4th of July EXTRAVAGANZA!!

Let me just give a little overview:

You wake up on the 4th to patriotic music, then outside for a the flag raising at 6:30. Last year Rachelle played "The Star-Spangled Banner" on her saxophone and almost got "dis-invited" for not bringing an instrument this year. But never fear, Bro. Hall was there to make things right. Bro. Hall came in one day with a big smile on his face, holding up a trumpet that he'd swiped from the high school band teacher (with permission of course).

So the 4th started with the flag raising at 6 a.m., accompanied by Rachelle on the trumpet, followed by a fundraiser breakfast put on by the town Fire Department. They cook some mean scrambled eggs, hash browns, sausage, ham, and pancakes. But don't ya think for $5 they could let you have a 2nd chocolate milk? That little pint just isn't enough.

Then back to the house to get ready for the parade. Everyone dresses in their best red, white and blue outfit, and if you don't you run the risk of being "dis-invited" to next years celebration. BJ got lucky this year, the only reason he wasn't "dis-invited" is because his shorts resembled army gear. Better be careful Beej! The parade happens in "uptown" and it's hilarious! Each family "marks their territory" with cars, chairs, blankets, and even yellow warning tape to make sure they have a good spot for the parade. And be ye warned, if you should attempt to steal or encroach on a family's spot, especially the Halls, there'll be hell to pay! So on the 4th we took our place by the post office, moved over some people that tried to mosey on into our spot, and got ready for the parade.

Seriously the ENTIRE town shows up for the parade and i'm guessing if you don't you might be shunned in social circles because it's just what you do on the 4th of July in Lewiston. It's a pretty long parade with lots and lots of candy hurled at you! Woohoo!

After the parade there's a big carnival type thing at the town park. There's a firehose for the kids to get nice and wet, horse rides, food, shaved ice, bake sale, little tents with stuff to buy (not really sure how to explain that), etc. etc.

But we don't stay too long at that because we've got our own party to worry about. Isn't the 4th of July celebration over you're asking? I mean you've had breakfast, a parade, a carnival? You must be new. The party has only just begun for the Hall's.

Sis. Hall throws the biggest 4th of July party you've ever seen! It's bigger than Christmas (without the presents of course). Everything is red, white, and blue including chairs, tables and table cloths, plates and utensils, cups, and she even plants her flowers to look like the American flag! Gotta love it.

At the parade (Front, L-R: Vanessa, Meghan, Rachelle, Melissa, Becca. Back: BJ, Amanda)

Every year the party gets bigger and better. The first year I was there she had the infamous "Razzle-Dazzle Castle"
Then the next year she added blowup slide:

Well, this year she pulled out all the stops. Take a look at this vision of fun!:

She's also got a big metal tub-thingy that the kids can swim in and a little kiddy pool, not to mention plenty of water guns, water soaking balls, and buckets just in case someone wants to start a water fight (which inevitably happens every year mind you). As BJ said, "This is summer fun gone wild!"

And now, a picture dump of the party:

Tons of food (unfortunately I took this picture before everyone arrived with their "red, white, and blue" dishes but you get the idea):

And of course, All-American hot dogs and burgers brought to you by the master chefery of Bro. Hall and Jake:

Oh geez! I can't believe I didn't mention what is arguably the funnest thing at the Hall residence...The Teeter-Totter!! Look at this thing! And of course it's red, white, and blue:

And the crowd:

As always, BJ was a big hit with the kids:

BJ needed a little assistance with some kids that were torturing him with water.

Sis. Hall also bought a big pack of Mentos and Coke so we could have a little explosive fun:

After the party we went to the park for a family softball tournament that started on Wednesday the 2nd and ended on the 4th. I got to play with Becca, Amanda and Vanessa Hall on the Morrison team (that's right, the rest of the Hall's are apparently too good for us). Here are some pics taken by our faithful cheering squad BJ, Rachelle and Melissa Reid:


After the game Vanessa had to work at Caspers so we went to visit her...and to get some ice cream!

(L-R: Rachelle Reid, Melissa Reid, me, Becca Hall, Macey Quigley, Emily and Audrey Quigley, Vanessa Hall (in the drive thru window :)), Amanda Hall, Shannon Hawkes, BJ)

Then when the sun went down, time for fireworks!!

And we're pooped...What a day!!

The last day we were there was also really fun! Becca and Vanessa's sister Melissa had stayed the night with her 3 girls, Macey, Audrey, and Emily. And believe me those girls weren't about to let BJ sleep in. I think they rather liked his morning hair!

We played duck duck goose, freeze tag, and a game where you do tricks on the teeter-totter. Judges determined the winner based on agility, toughness of trick, smoothness, etc. I have here the winner of the contest, Vanessa Hall. She was featured on ESPN with commentary from ESPN's own Barry Mathews.

(eating iced lemonades after a hard morning of playing around)

And as our last hoorah for the weekend we went to Big J's .

Well it was a GREAT weekend and all I have to say is, "Well done Hall family. Well done." Until next year!!