Tuesday, July 31, 2007

I've Been Simpsonized

I heard a commercial on the radio a few days ago about a contest they are doing where the grand prize is to have yourself Simpsonized and you will be on an episode of The Simpsons. Then, Gordon had a blog entry where he Simpsonized himself and Cathi. It looked like fun, so I decided to try it. Here is the picture that I used:

I Simpsonized myself twice, making minor changes. Here are the results:

Then I did it with Stacey. Here is the picture that I used:

And here is the result:

Kind of funny.

Trek Video

Well, last Sunday, our stake had the Trek Fireside. The main purpose of this fireside was to show the video that I had made, so I was a little nervous. I was so hopeful that people would view the video the same way I had and would be able to relive Trek and get the "Spirit of Trek" again by watching it.

It went very well, and most everyone said that it was very well done. Of course, they're not going to come up to me and say, "Dang, that sucked!"

I finished the video a week ago, so most of the work had already been finished, which was nice so I didn't have to worry about that video the whole week.

One frustrating this was that I produced the entire video in 4x3 aspect ratio. However, I didn't notice until a few minutes into the video that the projector was showing it in 16x9. Everyone looked short and fat. It bugged me the whole time, but I couldn't do anything about it. At least when everyone gets the final copies and can view it at home, it will display correctly and like it even more!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Pioneer Trek

Stacey and I went on a Pioneer Trek for our stake last week. Stacey was one of the Ma's in our ward and I was one of the photographers for the stake. It was quite an experience. It is hard to put it all into words, but let me just say that it definitely changes lives. Many times during the Trek the question was put out "Was it worth it?" Over 200 pioneers died between the Willie and Martin Handcart companies, which is about 20% of the people. Was it worth it? Considering the faith strengthening experiences they had and the relationships that they were able to build with their Savior, the answer is a definitive YES! I was thinking just last night, that if you think about all the people who were affected by those handcart companies, the answer is even more definitive. 80% of the pioneers survived, but if you think about how many people have gone up there to re-enact the trek and how their lives have been changed, the number of people affected goes way up.

The women's pull was very touching. The young women in the stake struggled to push/pull the handcart up the hill and all the young men stood to the side of the trail and watched the struggle but were unable to help. It was amazing how this experience cemented the relationships that the youth had within their "families."

Another great experience was the crossing of the Sweetwater river. The stake re-enacted the crossing of the Sweetwater where the 4 young men carried the entire company across the river. Very few young women in the stake crossed the river themselves. Most of them were carried across by the young men. Brother Hunter, the Trek Master, had asked us all to try to envision the actual circumstances of the pioneers. For example, try to picture the snowy mountains, the ice floating down the river, etc. I was able to do that as I sat on the opposite side of the river and filmed the stake members cross the river. It doesn't sound that awesome, I know, but it definitely was.

I would do another Pioneer Trek in a heartbeat. It was so fun, and definitely life changing. If I ever do it again, though, I want to be the Pa with Stacey as the Ma. I think that would have been even more special to us.

Now that we are back, though, my real job begins. I get to take 7-8 hours of video and edit it down to a 45 min DVD to distribute to each of the youth. It should be pretty fun to go through and relive the Trek, but it will definitely be a lot of work.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Aaron's Scripture Reading

07/03/07: We read the Book of Mormon every night with the kids before they go to bed. We are mainly trying to get them used to the language used in the scriptures. Stacey and I read a column, then have each child read one verse with our help.

A few days ago, Aaron was trying to say the word "Zarahemla" and he said, "Zarablenda." It made us chuckle. He also was so excited when we were reading about Alma and the sons of Mosiah, especially when he heard that he was in the scriptures!

07/16/07 Update: Last night, Aaron said some pretty good ones, that I just had to put in here. We were reading Alma 5:54. Instead of saying "having been sanctified by the Holy Spirit" he said "being terrified of the Holy Spirit." I started laughing, and he got pretty upset with me. We kept going, and then instead of "which are meet for repentance" he said "which are meat from the parents." It was hilarious, Stacey and I were both laughing pretty hard at this point. He is a funny kid. He just says what he thinks he heard.

Later that night, he came out of bed and came to Stacey and I and asked, "Mom, can I go tell Kaylee that I love she?" It made me laugh. We said, "Yes, go tell Kaylee that you love she!"