Posted by Rachel
on February 10, 2008 at 7:31 pm
It’s that time of year again: the time when guys stress about how to pretend to be thoughtful and romantic.
Jas up close and personal
Yes, Valentine’s Day is next week. Jason and I generally do some sort of double-date or group activity the Saturday before or after Valentine’s Day and have our own romantic evening on the actual holiday. This year it was my turn to plan all our Valentine’s Day activities. I invited the Rowley’s to join us for our Saturday double-date.
Jas and Rae
We went cross-country skiing at Soldier’s Hollow. It was a perfect day for this outing.
Amber and Jeremy
None of us had any real experience cross-country skiing but for some reason the boys decided that it was a good idea to try a black diamond trail called the Roller Coaster. As you can imagine from the name, this trail was one steep hill after another.
Jason kicks butt!
Cross-country skis turned out to be quite different than normal skis to control so trying to stop and turn was a challenge, especially on this crazy trail. But we had fun despite the inevitable falls and crashes.
Amber, Rae, and Jeremy
After our cross-country adventure we went to our respective homes to take showers and gussy up. And then we headed to La Caille. La Caille is the French restaurant in Sandy probably known best for its expensive prices and gorgeous grounds. We had heard mixed reviews from people regarding this restaurant but since none of us had ever been there we wanted to give it a try. The grounds were extensive and looked like they would be spectacular in the summer. The building itself was like a chateau. It was unique, romantic, and interesting. I found myself staring at different details in the room throughout dinner.
The food was well presented. The appetizers and desserts we had were amazing. However, my main course was a little disappointing. It was good, but not as good as you would expect when you are paying $60 for it. However, Jason’s main course, venison, was tender and delicious. So I guess you really need to choose what you order wisely at La Caille and take recommendations from the waiting staff.
La Caille was a fun experience and I would recommend it for a special occasion romantic meal. If you do go, plan on being there all evening-it’s more like an event than a meal.
Posted by Rachel
on February 6, 2008 at 4:09 am
It was my privilege to vote today. I belong to a generation notoriously known for its lack of interest in voting, politics, or anything patriotic. It really is our only flaw, other than that we are perfect! Right?
I am glad to say that this political apathy does not apply to me.
Every time I vote, I get a little teary eyed. I am reminded that this activity, which so many of us take for granted and don’t even participate in, was one of the primary reasons this great country was formed. And it is something, many in this world, are still not allowed to do.
I am thrilled that there are actually candidates this election that I would be proud to have as leaders. Since I have been old enough to vote I have felt like I have been voting for the candidate that I disliked the least. Not one of them has triggered my enthusiasm- until now.
I hope all of you went out and voted and that you will vote in November’s election. I also hope that you will educate yourselves. That you will watch the debates, listen to the candidates, research the issues, and decide unbiased who would lead this country in the direction you would like it to go.
I hope you will not let the race, sex, or religion of the candidates sway your decision. I would love to see a woman elected president but I refuse to vote for, or against, a candidate simply because they happen to be a woman.
Along those lines, I have to say it aggravates me when I hear of voters simply checking the box to vote entirely republican or democrat. It’s an extremely lazy way of voting. Most of the people that vote this way, I have found, know very little about the candidates.
Although many people seem to believe the contrary, integrity and great leadership are not party specific. When we think about the great political figures in American history such as Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Andrew Jackson and Abraham Lincoln, I doubt many of us, except for the few history geeks out there, recall what political party these people belonged to. We don’t remember because it is inconsequential. What matters is what they did for our country; their vision and initiatives. I hope you can all see beyond party lines and vote for candidates that demonstrate remarkable leadership and personal integrity, no matter what party they happen to belong to.
BTW for all of you who are aspiring history geeks: John Adams was a Federalist. Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson were Democratic-Republican, the precursor to the modern Democratic Party. Abraham Lincoln was a Republican.
Another historic tidbit: while Andrew Jackson was campaigning for president his opponents started calling him a “Jackass”. He liked the term so much that he started using the donkey as his symbol. This eventually led to the Democratic Party being symbolized by the donkey.
Posted by Rachel
on February 3, 2008 at 10:06 pm
All those who are native to Utah remember the kind of winters we grew up with. Winters that never quit. Winters we were continually hit by snowstorms and drifts piled up high. We haven’t had a winter like that in over a decade…until now.
I’m toe carving!
Our winters as of late, which have lacked any bite, were blamed on El Niño or global warming. However, no one can dispute that this year we have had a REAL Utah winter. It started out slow but by Christmas, winter meant business. In January I think we had more days with snow than days without.
Jas is awesome!
Jason and I went snowboarding on Friday at Brighton Resort. Aaron Blakely, Jeremy Rowley, and Jeremy Sabin all joined us. We all agree that the snow that day was easily the best we had seen in a decade. Brighton had gotten around 70 inches of snow in just a few days making it a boarder’s paradise.
Rowley didn’t comb his hair.
Fifteen inches of snow fell Thursday night so Friday morning there was a sheriff checking cars going up the Big Cottonwood Canyon, making sure they had chains or 4-wheel drive. Luckily the Sabin’s had kindly allowed us to borrow their truck. So we were able to continue.
Aaron post boarding
The snow was perfect for learning new boarding skills. I have been trying to become a proficient toe carver for years now. I have had some success but on Friday I made leaps and bounds. The snow was like a wet soft pillow; it made you feel invincible. So falling was no big deal and I was willing to try anything. I’m happy to say that I can now toe carve! I’m one more powder day away from having it perfect!
And the snow is still not showing signs of stopping. Last night Brighton got 15 more inches of snow, giving them a base depth of 124 inches. Today and tonight promise a 100% chance of snow as well. So all you who have been thinking of skiing or boarding, now is the PERFECT time to do it. The snow is unbelievable! I’m sure Jason and I will be back out boarding again soon.
Posted by Rachel
on January 30, 2008 at 5:59 am
As most of you know, I have been the captain of a coed indoor soccer team for nearly a year now. Team Evil is our current team name, though we were once known as the Goal Diggers.
I can’t say all my experiences as captain of this team have been good. I have discovered that competition brings out the best in some people and the worst in others and that sexism is unfortunately still very much alive today.
However, despite a few setbacks and the occasional team drama, I have very much enjoyed playing on and leading this team. My favorite thing about playing on Team Evil is watching players improve and excel. My team will let anyone join us with a desire to play and a good attitude. As a result we have many members that have played little or no soccer before joining our team. So these teammates often start out as pretty shaky players but they soon develop super awesome soccer skills and become contributing members of our team. I enjoy watching this transition and feel somewhat like a proud mama when they finally get the hang of it and exceed their teammates expectations.
Jas and Rae are evil!
Simone has gone from a player with absolutely no soccer experience to an aggressive defender. She takes on men three times her size (and weight) without a second thought now.
Dave, also a noob to soccer, has really become a spectacular defender and goalie. He has surprised everyone without how quickly he improved and is now an integral part of our defense.
Adam, who spent his first few games kicking everyone’s shins instead of the ball, now is one of our top goal scorers. Way to go Adam!
Sara and Jacob, relatively new additions to our team, have impressed us with their good attitudes and enthusiasm. They aren’t shabby players either!
Andrew is the undisputed quickest member of our team. He therefore gets more than his share of time playing the dreaded mid position. But unfortunately, he does it too well, so I’m sure he will continue to get stuck with that position in the future.
Jeremy is very loud and helps us not take ourselves too seriously. My favorite Jeremy moment was when the other team scored a goal and Jeremy shouted, “It’s a sad day in Gotham”. Even the ref laughed.
Amber, once again a noob, has become a much more confident player. She started out very timid and unsure of herself and now she is quite the defender. We will all be excited when Amber scores her first goal-it will happen soon.
Jason is personally my favorite member of the team, and of course I am not biased in any way. He gives himself little credit but he is great at any position he plays and runs like the wind.
Tom has been our goalie for many a season. He started with no experience playing this position but has definitely developed into quite the keep. This was his last season playing with us-so adieu Tom we wish you well.
Although Team Evil rarely wins, our players go out on the field each game excited and positive despite our losing streak and each time we score a goal there is so much cheering from the sub box that you would think we had just made the winning touchdown at the super bowl. I am grateful for teammates that support each other and celebrate even the smallest of victories.
Adam and Jeremy
There are some that would say the only point of competitive sports is winning. But I strongly disagree. I play for a team that doesn’t give up even if the odds are highly against us, that can smile and laugh after a game where we scored no points at all, that will cheer for each other until our voices are horse. We may not win on a regular basis but we have perseverance, enthusiasm, patience, loyalty, and appreciation for each other and because of that I wouldn’t trade any of our members for the best soccer players out there. Way to go Team Evil! I love playing with all of you! You kick butt!
May our new season be a splendid one!
Posted by Rachel
on January 27, 2008 at 8:27 pm
The Sundance Film Festival, one of the most prominent independent film festivals, takes place mere minutes from where we live. Because we have a unique opportunity as locals to attend this event, Jason and I try to go to at least one screening every year. Locals can purchase tickets earlier than the general public by registering on the Sundance website between September and December. However, Jason and I usually forget to do this on time and end up scrambling to get tickets when they go on sale to the public. Sometimes our scrambling is successful, sometimes it is not.
This year we managed to get tickets to two shows: a documentary about prominent African Americans called The Black List and a Swedish film called The King of Ping Pong. The tricky and interesting thing about Sundance is that you have to choose which films you want to see based off a little paragraph description about them. You don’t have a trailer to rely on or critic reviews to fall back on. Though this does turn choosing a film into more of a guessing game than anything else, it also gives you a chance to experience these films with no expectations or preconceived notions, to be surprised.
The Black List turned out to be well made and thought provoking. We were told by the director and producer, who were present at the screening, that it had recently been bought by HBO. So if you ever get a chance to see it, it’s worth watching.
The Black List
The King of Ping Pong was a decent film and it had some truly funny moments. However, it moved at a glacial pace so we didn’t enjoy it as much as the other show. But overall the experience was still a good one.
The King of Ping Pong
So all you Utah film enthusiasts, next time Sundance is in town give it a try. People come from all over the world to attend and all you have to do is drive a few minutes. It’s worth it!