Wednesday, July 18, 2018


I’m going to explain an inside/group joke that I may have posted here and there before, but it may have made no sense at all at the time I posted it.

Every time I travel great distances with someone, I tell everyone in person or through social media “Crystals. We forgot the crystals.

Confused? Don’t be. No, I don’t own any crystals, nor was I needing to pack any crystals for that past or any future trips... The quote comes from the 2nd Commentary on the second release of the Napoleon Dynamite DVD called the “Napoleon Dynamite - Like, the Best Special Edition Ever!” released back in 2006 [blog post link]. This secondary commentary included the cast who played Kip (Aaron Ruell), Pedro (Efren Ramirez), Deb (Tina Majorino) and Uncle Rico (Jon Gries). As you can see in this video that includes the commentary, Aaron Ruell tells the story involving his family behind this “time machine” scene.

The first time I think I said it was back in 2009 [Twitter post]. Point is, every time I travel long distances and I’m thinking after it’s too late to turn around and grab whatever it may be that I have forgotten, I'll say this quote... only if I didn’t forget something.

I guess it’s now kind of a tradition to just blurt it out.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Summer 2018 - Week One

For the last couple of years, I would normally get around to posting what we did with the girls while they were up here for the summer a few months after school had started. Even though the summer is not over and the twins are still up here, I thought I’d get a head start this time. 

June 4
The girls took off for Science Summer (overnight) camp in Cedar City.


(All screenshots from the take home DVD they were given)

June 5
My mom and grandma Jarrett drove down to Mesquite to spend a few days away. The girls returned home from camp.

June 6
The girls must have cleaned up, washed and dried their laundry from camp, and then got packed to come up here.

June 7
My mom and grandma picked up the twins at their grandmas house in St. George to bring them up to Salt Lake for the summer. They arrived back in Salt Lake and dropped off my grandma off at my relatives house close by us, then drove over to our place. We got them settled in for their stay. TJ drove over shortly after and we all sat around chit chatting while we ate pizza and ice cream popsicles. We played a card game called Superfight! that truly can cause verbal fighting and disagreements. We gave the girls their new fishing poles that we bought them, but Ady’s was missing the handle to the reel (I didn't even see that when we bought them a few nights prior). So after my mom and brother left, we went to Walmart to exchange it, and bought little 3-drawer plastic dressers for the girls room.

The girls needed to shower, and then we all watched Stranger Things, since they were punished for fighting the last time they were up here in Marchfrom finishing the second season. After a couple episodes, we finally went to bed.

June 8
Amanda had to work, but she had us wake up since we were still sleeping. The girls did their daily morning chores that we ask them to do, then I took Amanda to work. Came back to let the girls play on the Wii since they couldn’t go outside to draw with chalk since the sprinklers were now on. I took them to Arctic Circle to wait in a booth for Amanda to get off work, since I had to head to work. Amanda was nice and bought them dinner before they left, but then they took the bus home and then they were able to get the food all ready for the next day when we were planning to take the girls fishing on Free Fishing Day in Utah.

June 9
We all woke up at 10, got ready and headed to Tibble Fork near Lehi to go fishing and have fun. We didn't catch anything, but that's because I'm the only one who knows how to set a reel. After the girls became frustrated, we finally let them go play in the water on the beach-like shore near where Amanda and I could try fishing some more. It hit 3 or 4 in the afternoon, and even though we could have kept having fun or fishing, I finally said we better go... I noticed Amanda starting to get red (yes, she put sun block on twice).

So we drove back home and got dinner started while we all took turns showering before eating dinner. After eating, my mom picked up Chloe to spend the night. Ady, Amanda and I played a round of Wii bowling, then I went to bed early since I had to work in the morning.

Monday, July 2, 2018

My Dad's Birthday

This April 27, it would be the first time for us to celebrate my dad's birthday without him. I requested the night off and we met everyone at the Spaghetti Factory in Taylorsville.

After eating, we all met up at his grave site to see his new headstone and to have cupcakes.

July 9th is coming up in a few day... it's another day we will all get together to remember him.

Monday, June 25, 2018

Spring Break 2018

So before the twins getting out of school for their Spring Break, their mom asked if I wanted to spend time with them. I of course said "Yes", but was confused since we had them for Spring Break last year. I’ll take them any time I can.

So Amanda, Destiny and I drove down and stayed the night (March 8) in Mesquite on Thursday night. We did our usual fun in the hot tub, dinner, gaming, and taking Destiny for a walk down to the store. We would have liked to go bowling, but league was going on, and then they were closing early to replace the carpet... Goodbye carpet. Also, the main pool was still very frigid. When we were leaving the hot tub, we walked past and saw kids in the pool. So she walked into the pool area and asked if it was warm. I could see the smirk on the young boys face slowly start to grow. Amanda put one foot in just to see what it really felt like, because she knew that they were pulling her leg too, and pulled it right out. Those kids were just laughing at her reaction to how cold it was.

The next day (March 9), before we picked up the girls from their grandmas after school, I arranged to fix a computer for an old co-worker and one of my favorite customers. Right after that, as we were near their grandmas house, we saw Ady walking. So it was perfect timing. Chloe was a ways behind, but eventually came around. We packed up their luggage in the car, then headed over to get lunch from Chick Fil A, then continued on our way north.

We were in contact with the girls Aubrey, and ended up meeting at the Arctic Circle in Orem for dinner. After leaving Orem, we made it into Salt Lake and had the girls get ready for bed.

The next day (March 10), we all took Destiny to Hatch Park, before I had to go work my evening shift at the store.

Sunday (March 11), I work both jobs, so I didn’t get to have fun that day with the twins. I did receive a picture from Amanda of Chloe playing games with Destiny.

(Picture by Amanda)

However, I did ask for Monday (March 12) off to celebrate TJ’s birthday. Since I wanted to do something fun with the twins, I asked if they wanted to go bowling? They said yes, so I invited TJ since it was his birthday. We met up at Fat Catz, bowled and enjoyed pizza for lunch.

After bowling was up, we drove over to my moms house to wait for my mom to get off work. My grandma and sister then showed up at the house, and then we went over to Dask for my brothers birthday dinner.

We had fun, but when we left the parking lot, I heard a rhythmic noise. I pulled over and saw that a big screw had somehow made its way into my driver rear tire. Luckily, we we were not even that far from the restaurant, and pulled back in the parking lot to change the tire. Chloe was riding with us, and asked to help, so I let her.

(Picture by Amanda)

Made it back to my moms house, so we could watch TJ open presents and enjoy his cake (aka brownies). Then headed home to let the girls give Destiny a bath.

Because things come up in our lives, I haven’t worked on this blog post for quite a while. So some details are now gone from my memory, and so I had to rely on photos I took to help finish this post. What is also sad is that I noticed a lot of photos missing that I took during this month... So back up your pictures kiddo's.

Tuesday March 13, I don’t recall anything that we did, but I did have to work that evening.

Wednesday, I did have that day off and so we took the girls to go swimming at the South Davis Rec Center.

After leaving, we came home to make dinner and dessert.

Later, we had to go up to my moms house (forgot why), but then came home and went to bed.

Thursday, I had to work that night, so ...

Friday, we woke up early because we would be traveling on the Front Runner for the first time. We drove over to Woods Cross Station to hop on the train heading south. We enjoyed the ride down to Provo, and stayed on the same train so we could head back north. Passed the station we hopped on and got off at the Farmington Station (the next one after). There, we walked over to have lunch at Panda Express, grabbed some sugary treats at IT’SUGAR, and goof off in Harmon’s until the next train heading south would be coming.

We waited until the train arrived, climbed aboard and traveled to the Woods Cross Station to get in my car to take us home.

We asked everyone who wanted to come over to a ham dinner... this included my best friend Tristyn and her two boys. Annie came over too, and I think this was the first time both had been to our place. We cooked the dinner before they all arrived, but when they arrived, we sat around to eat and chitchat. Getting late, everyone who came over headed back home. We cleaned up, had the girls get in pajamas, and we got comfortable in the TV room to watch the classic video game movie, The Wizard. The reason I had us watch that is because I haven’t seen it in years, and I wanted to see if the girls recognized the location in the ending scene. They did recognize it, because it involves the dinosaurs in Cabazon, California that we stopped to see on our way out of California. The film was released in 1989, and of course it has changed over the years. We also realized that we didn’t go inside the one dinosaur they ran into. Maybe in the future. Well, the girls liked the movie and then we went to bed.

Saturday, the 17th

It’s not that I didn’t want to spend time with my girls on Saturday, which was the last full day they were going to be in town, it’s just that I had to work that night and both jobs the following day... my body needs all the sleep it can get.
So I slept in until I had to get ready for work, and headed to work.

Amanda and the girls had more fun than I did. They were all picked up by my mom and traveled out to Sandy for TJ’s drum recital. I think this is the first drum recital that TJ has performed at, that the girls were probably old enough to remember it. Everyone was there except yours truly, but after everyone went to dinner at Arctic Circle. Not Amanda’s location, a different one.

(Picture by Amanda)

Then after, they were dropped off and did their nightly routine of getting ready for bed, and to pack up their luggage to head home the next morning.

The next morning, the girls step dad picked up the twins by himself since their mom stayed behind (sore back), and stopped by to say Goodbye while I was at Home Depot.

Until Summer break...

Monday, June 18, 2018

Wendover Bus Trip

One thing I love about being with Amanda is that we are always trying new things. One thing I have seen when traveling to and from Wendover every time I have traveled out that way, is the Wendover Fun Bus. To give you a quick explanation without visiting their site is that you pay a decent price to have a local bus company drive you and many others out to West Wendover, Nevada on a double deck Greyhound-like bus with bingo entertainment (with prizes for winners), vouchers for a free buffet, and free play to the 3 sister casinos.

So Amanda asked that I ask for Valentine's Day off so we could ride the bus out to Wendover. I was lucky to get it scheduled off at my new location, and so we went. At the time, we didn't have a lot of money to gamble away out there, but had enough to pay for the bus ride and play the slots just a little.

We hopped on board a single level bus at the IHOP (now to be soon IHOB, tells you how long it's been between us going) in Woods Cross, then bordered the double deck bus in Salt Lake. After taking off, we sat there for a bit before they handed out disposable travel bingo cards and played a few rounds of BINGO before we arrived in Wendover.

The Tree of Life near mile marker 26.

We hopped off the bus at Rainbow and went in to play a for a little bit, before then taking the courtesy shuttle bus over to Montego Bay to use our voucher for our free buffet. After eating, we still had plenty of time to kill... but we didn't have much funds left. We knew this would happen, and so Amanda and I planned to walk from Montego Bay over to the Wendover Airport to venture around and waste time. We climbed up the old radar tower (Amanda tried last time, but she finally made it to the top this time) and walked over to the restored hanger where they once stored the infamous Enola Gay aircraft.

Chuckling nervously because of she made it to the top of the radar tower this time.

If you walk east from the airport, you will see Army buildings starting to decompose and fall apart.

The restored hanger that once stored the Enola Gay

Looking inside that hanger through the main door window.

After killing enough time, we walked back to Montego Bay to then take a shuttle back over to Rainbow. We went inside to play the remaining funds we had (until payday) and browsed the gift shop to see if we could use any funds on our players card to get any merchandise for free.

With about 45 minutes left before it was time before load up on the bus to head home, we just sat in the red lit lobby before loading up on the bus.

We made it back home after dark, then swapped back of the first bus we first hopped on to get back to the IHOP restaurant. We had a lot of fun, but since we have only gone once more by car. Haven't gone as much because we are saving up for our summer California trip.