Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Colorado/Las Vegas Trip

Brooklyn eating toast in the Chicago Airport

Welcome home Tiana from the mission and Don from Iraq. Thanks Melinda and Afton for visiting!

Ahhh, sisters that don't look anything like each other.

Brooklyns favorite delicacy- dirt.


more cousins

and more cousins.

and some more cousins.

My best friend from college, Erin, getting married!

Brooklyn eating BBQ with pirates.(There was alot of cleavage there.)

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Home Improvements

Celeste has been a busy bee updating the house. Take a gander.

And a couple videos of Brooklyn.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Good Reads

*** Must Read
** Take a peek
* Don't think about it

*** Filled with some great algorithms/techniques and backed by the theory needed to understand the content. Pick it up if you want to do some planning.

*** A great book to get your fill of probabilistic techniques. Lacks some of the theory, but has plenty of references to point you in the right direction.

** This book fits all your Basic Control Theory needs. It only gets two ** because some of the book is boring and unhelpful. The state estimation and tracking/rejection part was pretty good. The introduction to matlab commands to calculate some of the hard matrix math was fabulous. But it could have been better.

*** Great book for Robust Control. The authors give very rigorous proofs of most of the material. They also leave a good portion up for exercises for the reader. As a student, this is wonderful because it helps you to dig into the material and really understand it. As a student, this is awful because it makes you dig into the material and proofs are never easy.

Ok. On a more serious note...

*** I really loved this book. It is basically a never-ending story. The main character begins telling a story. Along the way, whenever a new character in the story is introduced, they start telling a story (usually about who they are/why they're there, etc.) So you have these cascading stories within stories and most of the characters lives are inter-related in some way. It was a feast to read. The sequel is out and I'm going to read as soon as school is out.

** Both fun comic books. I've been craving these for a while. They are the Marvel world drawn Manga style. Introducing the Marvel Mangaverse, the writers got to start the characters all over again. They made new storylines and new plots/villains. And since it was a limited time deal, they had no reservations in off-ing a hero or a baddie. Curious? Then check it out.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Book Update

***Must Read
** Pretty Good
* Skip It

**Neverwhere- Very strange, "Alice and Wonderland" on acid

***The Road- Wow! Post-apocalyptic journey of a father and son, that makes you want to work on your food storage.

***The Other Boleyn Girl- Now I'm obsessed with this time period. I've watched tons of documentaries, and spent alot of time on wikipedia. Since the entire book is focused on getting a male heir, its not for the prudish.

* The Ultimate Gift- Just watch the movie, a feel gooder.

* Stardust- Just watch the movie, the book is horrible.

*** The Boleyn Inheritance. Henry the 8th's, 4th and 5th wife, extremely interesting. Again not for the prudish.

* Lovely Bones- I heard so many good things about this book, but I only made it half way, skipped the rest and read the last chapter. Sorry!

*** Ptolemy's Gate- 3rd book in the Batimaeus trilogy. It was my favorite. Magicians meet a Genie.

*** Complications- I'm so proud of myself I read a non-fiction book! Ok, I had to read it for book club, but I'm sooo glad that I did. It reads like fiction and opens your eyes to the world of doctors. And I'm not talking about watching Jack on "Lost."

** Tuesdays with Morrie- Again, heard so much about the book, but to tedious for me.

**The Sweet Far Thing- 3rd book after "Great and Terrible Beauty" and "Rebel Angels". Loved the first two, but this was a disappointing conclusion. Could have done with only 350 pages not 700.

* Silas Marner- Tried to pick up a classic. Only read 3 pages and decided I'm not a literary enough. Thanks though!

Sunday, April 06, 2008

More Sun

It's so nice to be able to go outside and not just tolerate the weather, but enjoy it! We spent some time gardening, weeding and playing outside. This was a beautiful weekend. It was quite enjoyable just working the land, so to speak. There was no pressure to make it better than someone else. No competition, no judgment from others, no hustle and bustle. Just quiet, hard work to pour yourself into for a few hours. It was blissful.
Listening to the 178th Annual General Conference of the Church also added to the beauty of the weekend. It was an interesting conference for me, since President Hinckley wasn't there. He's been the prophet for most of my formative years. He was the prophet of my youth. When the new prophet, President Monson, spoke, I almost expected him to sound like Pres. Hinckley or give a talk patterned like he used to give. But it when Pres. Monson spoke, he was still just Elder Monson. He told stories in his usual way, and had the usual inflections to his voice and animations in his face. He was the same man, he just carries a new mantle of power and responsibility. I am so glad there is a prophet on the earth today. Someone who can number himself among Moses, Elijah, Isaiah, Peter, and Paul. Someone to lead and guide us in these crazy times. That was what I loved the most about this conference.

As for other news, my Qualifying Exam has been delayed which is fine, but a bit of an annoyance. I was so ready to take it and get it out of the way. I haven't been as attentive to my other classes because I've been so worried about this Exam. Hopefully I can take it soon. The other pressing concern on the family has been finding an apartment in Boston for the summer. Celeste has been glued to craigslist every day scouring the listings. We've found a few great places but the people are slow to respond. Maybe they're just not as anxious to make a decision as we are.

Celeste is super excited about seeing her soon-to-be returned missionary sister. Just two weeks and she'll be living it up in Colorado and Nevada, leaving me at home alone.

Brooklyn is walking! She is so cute as she patiently learns to walk around the house. She is a bright ray of joy in our lives.