"Time seems to be speeding by. It is hard to believe this last week is already here and gone. Seems like just five minutes ago I sat down to write about Xing Jiang Oilfield Training (0506.html). Of course, maybe it seems like that because I did just barely finish what I started to write last week after the superbowl half-time show.
My week was kind of quiet. Dave Johnson was in Libya. There were a couple of calls from Luis about Mexico. Jialin is tied up with the Chinese Spring Festival and did not answer his phone when I called him about China. Sam LeRoy has settled into his job and is doing a great job of leading the Tiles team. Les Denham started being trained by Carlos to be his replacement while Carlos spends three months in Taiwan to learn to speak his wife's language (yes, Carlos got married last weekend). It will be good to have Carlos speaking Chinese, as he will be able to help with some of the projects I anticipate happening in China.
Last Sunday night Melanie asked if they could have a Taylor's first birthday party at the house on Saturday. Melanie, when you said you really missed my dutch oven cooking, and you had me hooked. I was pleased to see you actually ate some of the potatoes and carrots on Saturday. I mentioned it to Roice, and he said he and Sarah planned to be in Houston on Saturday and so of course they would plan on coming. Roice also said he was interested in coming to Matt's High School Graduation the end of May. I'll probably wake up tomorrow morning and Matt will be graduating. Oh well!
Tuesday was Matt's big concert of the year. They performed a concert written by Hyden in the Methodist Church. My friend Michael Hauck from the University of Wyoming (../0234.html and ../0338.html) joined us for dinner and then to go to the concert. He was in town to give a status on his transportation project (remote sensing of highways to improve maintenance). It was nice to catch up. He stayed with us on Tuesday night. Michael had read the first chapter of `An Open Mind,' and had left me substantial comments in the margin. The note that caught my attention the most was one that read:
Of course, I will report on any follow-up to this question. As we were discussing An Open Mind, Andrea turned to Michael and said:
Ohhh! Sure seems like this is a problem to me. Michael did not say anything about this, nor Andrea's comment about me getting so upset about having the taxes on Walden 3-D recalculated, based on $9,000 assets instead of $1,000 assets. Oh well! Michael came by the office Wednesday morning and gave a brief review of his highway project for Mike Dunn. Lee Bell was tied up and was not able to participate. Then Michael Hauck and I had lunch with one of his other corporate sponsors: Corporate Montage. I introduced the two of them to Christian Singfield, and they ended up meeting with him later in the evening for drinks.
Matt and I were responsible for locking up the church each night this week. We forgot Monday and Thursday nights. Oh well! Wednesday night I went to the Scout Committee Meeting to find out about the High Adventure for this summer. It is interesting to listen to new committees hash over the same things we have hashed over in the past. There can be great improvement through simple documentation and indexing of the documentation so folks have an on-line index to lessons learned in the past. Possibly one of you will learn that about or through these Thoughtlets and be able to implement it better than I have been able to.
On Thursday there was an e-mail that interests me. I will report on what happens with this as I find out more. It read:
Thursday night I watched ER with Andrea. She ended up missing much of the program because she was talking to Bishop Morris in the Katy Second Ward about a seminary student who did not graduate last year and wanted to force 30 hours of make up work in two days so he could include on his BYU application that he graduated from seminary. Matt referred to him as a slacker, and I laughed. At least Matt understands the concept. Now if he would only do some homework and not just barely pass his classes. Matt, at least you are passing, and you are doing much better than you have in past years.
Friday we received the invitation to Tayor's first birthday party. It was really neat and cute. It was on a hard vellum, rolled up, with serrated edges. It reads:
Friday night was another night of Enterprise (this week I learned they are canceling Star Trek after all of these years of keeping it going), JAG, and we were watching Numb3rs when Melanie, Jared, Colby, and Taylor arrived. Colby was already asleep. Taylor is a ball full of energy. She had the cutest little wand with a star at the end of it, and she walked around all evening touching things with her magic wand. Melanie had created a wonderful DVD of photos of Taylor's first year. I attempted to turn it into a mpeg movie that I could post on the web, but my battery was dead, and it did not get done. Oh well! Melanie had to teach me how to get the DVD to play on my computer the first time. Then at 10:00 Matt and I went down and locked up the church. There were a group of Elder's playing basketball, and they said they would turn off the lights and make sure the doors were locked. There was a nice note from Bridget Friday evening, with a middle name change from what I had been told originally (0506.html). Two digital images are below. Bridget's message said:
Saturday was to be Taylor's first birthday party. I took Matt down to the church at 7:30 to clean the church as part of his community service. Then Jared, Melanie, Colby, and Taylor joined me and we went to Shipley's for their favorite breakfast. I had a kolochi and enjoyed it. Then we went down to my office to pick up the projector, so we could project the DVD Melanie made at the birthday party.
When we got back, Andrea was just finished getting ready, after having read the paper and gone for a run. She had not gone to the grocery store for more potatoes yet, and so Colby and I went over to `his park.' We were in front of the Reeves house when Colby got in front of me and wanted me to pick him up. I told him no, and he insisted. So I sat down and waited until he was ready to walk. Every time he would try to get me to pick him up, I would sit down and rest until he was ready to start walking. While sitting down I would whistle responses to different birds that were singing. He got a big kick out of that. He was very scared of the roads, and I did my best to enforce this respect for automobiles. We finally made it to the park. We had a good time. The thing Colby liked best was a little manual scoop that was like a big scoop shovel. We spent a lot of time digging a trench and filling it back in. We also went down slides, climbed ladders, walked on a swinging bridge, threw balls, and generally did guy things. Fun! Too bad I don't take time to do this kind of thing more often. Oh well!
When we got back it was time to peel potatoes, cut up onions and carrots, get the coals lighted and the dutch oven set up, as well as get the grill ready to cook hot dogs and hamburgers. We prepared enough food for about twice as many folks as came. I got the feeling Melanie was disappointed in the number of folks that made it, and I thought it was a great party. In fact, as with all one year old birthday parties, if anything, it was a little too much. But what is life about if we can't enjoy our kids' birthday parties. I took several digital photos. The ones I like the best are to the right. I think Melanie hoped more of her friends would make it. Oh well! Colby was certainly old enough to learn that people other than him get to have a birthday party. The presents were practical. The food was OK (I like dutch oven and hamburgers). The company and the conversations were great. Rob almost wiped me out in a chess game on his new chess board from China, but I pulled it out, then turned around and created a stalemate. Roice and Sarah loved the quilt Andrea started for them at her quilt retreat. Roice was introduced to Christian Singfield over the phone, but had to leave before Christian got through a traffic jam on I-10 and made it to the house. Melanie and Jared and Colby and Taylor were just leaving to get back to Vidor for the Adult Session of Stake Conference when Christian arrived. Thanks for coming over. It was sooooooooooo good to have you guys visit.
Christian spent about two hours with us explaining his company and what he is doing to Andrea. FSI (Full Spectral Imaging International Corp. Limited) has the potential to become the size of Schlumberger or Halliburton. It will be interesting to see how it develops. Especially since I have been promised a 5% equity position, and 10% if someone I introduce to Christian funds the project. One of the most interesting parts of the discussion to me was concerning a core repository, and whether Cedar City made any sense as a place to store cores. Based on the additional information learned from Christian, and a suggestion from Andrea regarding using the Iron Mine pits to the west of Cedar City as the permanent repository, I get even more excited about the potential of Cedar City as a national repository. As with too many of my projects, time will tell if anything comes of these thoughts and plans. During the course of the conversation, Andrea repeated to Christian her quote about An Open Mind and brains falling on the ground. Oh well!
Matt went out to dinner with one of his friends from school and her parents. Andrea and I went to see the movie `In Good Company' after Christian left. It is an OK movie, with the exception of the lead actor in effect saying he needed to change his attitude and learn to condone premarital sex. The world is becoming so immoral and so scary in regards to basic fundamentals of family life.
Church was kind of quiet today. It was Scout Sunday and the boys were to wear their uniforms. Matt did. The Elders blessed the sacrament and the High Priests passed the sacrament. Either Alan Peterson or I messed up on which side of the back row we went. Oh well! It worked out. Susan and David Chandler were the Sacrament Meeting speakers. They did an outstanding job. I wrote two possible stanzas about LOVE for Prime Words from David's talk:
I spent both of the other church sessions in Primary Opening Exercises so that the teachers could go to In-Service Training.
Tonight I finished up the Thoughtlet about Xing Jian Training (0506.html), and there were two interesting e-mails that arrived:
And the following, which I won't comment on other than to say, Heather, I continue to very specifically keep you in my prayers every day, and I worry a lot about your choices, including your need to draw attention to yourself, even through sickness:
Earlier today, as I sat with the little kids in primary, in my mind's eye I could see Taylor Robbyn Wright in Primary in two more years, and I was glad I was able to be at and to host Taylor's first birthday."