Thursday, May 31, 2007

The Next Chapter in my Brother's Life

Well, today I helped my older brother Byron finally pack all their possessions onto the largest Penske truck you can get without a CDL. He and his young family are leaving tomorrow for Indiana and a whole new experience. For more than a month now they have been living at
his in-laws while his family's near future was worked out. At first they were going to move from Salt Lake to Ogden, a scant 40 miles or so, but when that didn't work out they decided that they would try Indiana, a bit farther away. You see, Byron's father-in-law has been living out there since about the beginning of the year with the intention of moving the rest of his family out upon completion of the school year. So even though it seems random, it's not so much.

So Byron and I spent the better part of four hours today loading this truck. James, the oldest son at just about three, amused himself by continually asking me what I was doing. I told him that if he asked me the same question every ten minutes for the next three hours I would always say the same thing: "moving stuff". His watch was fast though, and after what must have been one or two minutes he figured it was time to ask again. Micheal, at just over 18 months, wanted to see what it would feel like to pull an appliance dolly down on himself. It didn't turn out as well as he thought it would. Finally, Emily, at about two months old, didn't do much of anything except make sure someone was holding her at all times.

At last the truck was packed and one of Byron's former coworkers came to help lift the piano on the truck. We celebrated the initial packing of the truck with dinner at a little chinese spot in Clearfield and headed for Bluffdale. My wife met us in Bluffdale and we spent some time with them while we could.

The most difficult part about seeing them move is that we won't get to be around the kids. Last year we went to Island Park, Idaho for a week and the whole family was very disappointed when we found out that they wouldn't be coming. Despite that, it's a great opportunity for Byron and Kari.

Also I was happy that Byron, Shaun and I were able to go on a hike on Memorial Day. We hiked to Grandeur Peak and had a great time. Byron said its a good thing he was able to go to the mountains since Indiana's highest point is something like 1500 ft. Here's a pic of us at the summit (that's Byron, Shaun, and I from left to right). Thats what the Salt Lake Valley looked like at 8:00 am on Memorial Day.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Semester Results and An Eye to the Future

It's now been a little while since my last post. I hope you all enjoyed my little special edition on the mechatronics competition. Now the grades are out and I get to see how I did. Unfortunately I had my worst semester since... well since I started really caring one way or the other. Here's how the dice fell: Mechatronics, B-; Heat Transfer, B-; Design Methodology, B-; and Intermediate Dynamics, D.

I think that the two largest factors resulting in these grades are the excessive amount of time that was required for the robot and the time I spent grading papers. Either one alone would have been harmful but the combination proved insurmountable.

Now I look to next semester. My schedule is laid out already (including an extra class to cover the D that I can't count for graduation) and since I have already quit grading papers the only challenge for me now is to come up with the money for tuition. I guess it's fortunate that I'm not a scholarship recipient. I would surely have lost it.

As far as money goes I've been trying to get some things going. It would have been nice to be able to start this process during the semester but it was impossible. I've been trying to get a job driving a mixer truck. Last week I applied at Jack Parsons and Geneva Rock which are two of the largest concrete suppliers in the valley and hopefully one of them will call me for an interview. I haven't finished my CDL test yet due to flakeage of others and now I want to wait to see if I hear from any of these companies. I don't want to spend $300 for nothing.

I also found out that I didn't get into the BS/MS program up at school. It's ok, though, that means I only have one year of school left. Since it will be my last year for a while I must start looking for a real job. In fact, if I can get one of those now I will keep it next year, but either way next years grades will be better than this years and hopefully increase my GPA. Once I finish and find work Chelsea has decided she wants to finish her accounting degree. I think it a great idea and I totally support her.

I'll try to keep you posted on the various summer activities until school starts again.