Monday, July 31, 2006

Superman Returns

As previously promised by Melinda, here is my review of "Superman Returns". I don't think it will be nearly as funny as Melinda's friend Kate's review (I haven't laughed that hard in a long, long time), but I will do my best.

Now for those of you who didn't know me as a kid, I have to provide a little history. When I was about 3 or 4 years old, my mom took me to see the original "Superman" with Christopher Reeve and that was it. I honestly thought I was Superman. My mom went out and got me my own cape and I was set. I got out an old blue polyester suit and popped the lenses out of an old pair of sunglasses and I was set. I spent hours and hours of my childhood "being" Superman.

So needless to say, I was all sorts of excited to go see this movie and, I have to say, it didn't disappoint. First of all, the casting was amazing. Brandon Routh did an incredible job. There were times in the movie where he looked and acted EXACTLY like Chrisopher Reeve. It was amazing. And as much as I have to give Gene Hackman credit for being one of the better actors in the industry, Kevin Spacey was absolutely phenomenal as Lex Luther. He was brilliant and I loved to hate him.

I don't want to give away any of the story line for anyone who hasn't seen it, but it was fun, interesting, exciting and intense the entire time. I loved this movie and give it high recommendations.

I do have to say, thought that I did have one problem/complaint about it (that I didn't even notice until Melinda pointed it out). They had too many completely overt comparisions between Superman and "a" (the) savior. Superman is not a god. He is not a savior. But they talked way too much about the "father and the son" and that the world needs a "savior", etc. That isn't ever what Superman was or is supposed to be. So that really bothers me.

But as for the movie on a whole, it was a lot of fun and exciting to watch. Melinda said the costuming was fantastic and she loved EVERYTHING Kate Bosworth (Lois Lane) wore. I'd recommend seeing it to anyone.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Fastest Fingers

Many of you have probably heard me make mention that my nephew Ben has the fastest fingers in the world...literally. He is a phenomenon with text messaging and is getting quite famous for it. He also happens to be super smart and a great basketball player, but today he is famous for his fingers.

He recently reclaimed his original world record title for Fastest Text Messager in Denver. Read the AP story about it HERE.

You can also hear him tell his whole story on an interview he had while doing some promotional stuff right before reclaiming the title in Denver this past week. You can click on the picture or "interview" above to see it.

Even better, he is using the money he's making from all of this to help pay for his mission. How much do you love that?! Congrats, Ben!! It couldn't happen to a better guy.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Saturday Trips

We began our Saturday with a trip to Hogle Zoo to see the new Asian Highlands exhibit. It was worth the trip. The phrase "big improvement" from the old cat house to this doesn't quite seem adequate. It was so fun. Laura's favorite place was a children's room where she got up close and personal with a Siberian Lynx.
She also made excellent friends with the trainer in that room and we learned more than we ever thought we could about that Siberian Lynx. Fortunately, that friendship also was lucrative. She got to play with some instruments in the room as well.We love that we have a season pass to the zoo. Reasons: when it's hot, we can just leave; Laura has learned her way around; we get to see the baby orangutan grow right along with Laura; she plays games with the animals (a favorite being "cheers" with whatever animal she happens to see drinking); and she gets to see her favorite animals doing different things. Today the penguins went for a swim (first time all year) and the giraffe was super close by.
Tonight, we went on a trip without Laura. (Thank you to Jason's parents for watching her!!) We had a little party with Jason's buddies for his birthday. Yes, it was more than 2 weeks early, but we had to go while Superman was still available for movie viewing on IMAX. It leaves tomorrow.

Dinner at Iggy's was super tasty. The fries were out of this world delicious. And, Jason will be doing a review of the movie in a post to follow.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Fear and Fun

For Young Women's this week we did a GREAT activity. My friend Karyn planned an awesome fear factor. We stuck our feet in freezing water; passed raw eggs in our hands; ate worms; balanced; stuck cotton balls to our noses; and popped water balloons after unlocking a lock. It was a blast. This is me freezing my foot off trying to pick up marbles with it.
And here is Karyn (with Deelisa) showing off her plate of worms. She spent so much time on this activity and it was worth it!!Laura has also been able to play with her friends quite a bit. She loves to play with the next door neighbor kids Ashton and Emma. She and Ashton had a great time last night playing soccer and blowing bubbles.
We also got to go to the park and play with her friends today. Yes, we've got a weekly tradition going here in the neighborhood of going to the park on Fridays. The kids have a blast. Laura was particularly happy to see her best bud Lily. We've both been out of town and the girls haven't spent much time together lately. They greeted each other with a big hug and then it was off to the slide.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Phone Obsessed Already??

We got new cell phones about a month ago. They are camera flip phones and we love them. Unfortunately, so does Laura. We don't let her use the nice digital camera to take pictures, but we figure the phone is built to withstand some abuse and we let her use it. She's gotten quite good. Here we are taking a picture of each other.Here is a picture she took of herself in the mirror. So FUNNY!
She announces how good her picture is after each shot. It is either good, "You can see her eyes." Or not good, "You can't see his eyes." You can see my eyes, so this must be a good one.
She also has learned how to answer the cell phone and regularly gets to the phone before I do. If you ever hear only heavy breathing on my phone, ask Laura how she's doing. Also, she can successfully call Grandma. "3 and then the green button". Poor mom is always getting calls from Laura. I'm afraid of how she'll be at 13.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


Okay, so yesterday would've been completely terrible had it not been for Laura's reaction to holding a sparkler!
It was a holiday here in Utah, but both Jason and I had to work. So, poor Laura had to come with me to my office. Neither of us enjoyed that!

So, we decided to have some fun that night and do fireworks. Jason had a grand time picking them out (he turned into a darling little boy there at the fireworks stand) and lighting them all. He also did wonderfully keeping Laura in sparklers.
We were happy to end our night with fun and were glad that Mom and Dad Fitzgerald could join us for the fun. Okay, and ending with homemade pizookie wasn't bad either. Oh, how I love and crave that stuff. Yum-O!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Weekend Recovery

We had a great weekend! We got a lot done, but also had some time to play and relax. Laura just really needed some good time with Mommy and Daddy.

Saturday began with me doing My Girlfriend's Kitchen and Jason mowing the lawn. We then went to a fun party with Jason's friends for Cory's wife Kristie's and his son Ethan's birthdays. This is Jason and his buddies at the party.Then, Jason taught me how to build a computer. It was an adventure to say the least. The result is fantastic and I think Jason is thrilled to be back on the cutting edge of technology. Happy early Birthday, honey!
That night we had a barbecue with my parents. Laura loves summer food and got covered in corn. We also played outside once it got cool.
Sunday was an easy Sunday; not too many meetings and neither of us had to teach. Afterwards we went to dinner with Jason's parents. He set up our old computer for them. While Laura watched Snow White with Grandma.

Saturday, July 22, 2006


I am back from camp and appropriately exhausted. Though, with a sick baby and doing it all on his own, I think Jason might have been just as wasted. This is how I found him when he came home after work the day I came back. Does that face say "Feed me", or "Take her"?
Girls camp was a marvelous success this year, in my opinion. We had a lot of fun activities, great crafts, skits, etc. We laughed and laughed at kissing stories and stayed up all night chatting as leaders. Oh, how I love all those girls and women!! Here's a darling picture of all the campers on the last day.Camp was also wonderful in building spirituality and cameraderie. We did a confidence course that was awesome. I never knew I could help haul 20 people over a 20 ft wall. Yes, my arms are still aching today. It was great to see everyone's satisfaction at making it over that thing...and we were the only group that did it without any men, I might add. We had a wonderful faith walk, testimony meeting and excellent speakers that though they were meant for the girls, really increased my spirituality as well. I'll get a picture from Karyn about that wall sometime soon and add it in here.

Camp helped me find a great use for that old crown of mine. Our theme was royalty, so we took pictures of all the girls in the crown and posted them at the entrance to the camp.
Finally, thank you to all the leaders for all your hard work. This was a GREAT camp!!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Bits and Pieces

I don't have anything very exciting to report, but I knew I needed to get a post in before I disappeared to Girls Camp for the rest of the week.

We got our Fitzgerald family pictures back and they turned out really nicely. I'm glad to finally have a family picture where I'm not the only kid without any family. Our little family picture is the new one on our profile. However, the one below was probably my favorite picture of all. Thank you to Tana for enduring an incredibly uncomfortable position to get such a cute picture of the sibs.Laura has discovered the joy of fresh, ripe raspberries. She LOVES them. Here is mom feeding them to her for the first time this year. I don't think she breathed because she was so intense about her enjoyment of them. We've had a bowl of them every day since.

Saturday, July 15, 2006


In a burst of spontanaeity, we decided to go up to the cabin. I think we just needed an escape from the heat of the valley (it's been over 100 degrees lately) and all the stress of life. From the moment we decided to go to the cabin to the time we arrived there, it was all of 3 hours. We all arrived up there exhausted...okay, and the cabin just is a great place to relax. Here we are enjoying the cool of the back porch.Fortunately, we all got our second winds and thoroughly enjoyed playing up there. Laura's favorite part was throwing rocks in the river. I think she would've thrown them for hours had our knees not given out in the search to keep her in rocks.We had a great night and were looking forward to sleeping in. Alas, a bird flew into the chimney and awakened all of us at the crack of dawn. Yep, the "early bird" got us up nice and early. Later that morning Jason clambered up the roof to repair the chimney and eliminate the bird problem. The prospect of him on that steep roof scared me so much I couldn't watch. Yes, he made it down safely.

We got a nice bonus that Mom and Dad joined us up there for a wonderfully big and relaxed breakfast. Here are Jason and Laura playing on the floor while waiting for breakfast.
We took off before it got too hot for a little fall shopping (yes, to get what we want for Laura's fall wardrobe, we have to start this early) at the Park City outlets.

I think this spontaneous trip was a bit of heaven for all of us. Laura got to relax from the rules of home by jumping on the bed (foams on the floor), playing in dirt, and screaming with joy. Jason and I got to forget about work, callings and the house. I think we'll be going up to the cabin a lot more often; it was a grand time!

Friday, July 14, 2006

Playin' in the Park

Laura and I just live for our Fridays together. We always have so much fun being able to spend the whole day together and play. Today, some friends from the ward invited us to go play with them at the park. We were glad they did. We started off by feeding the ducks.It was a hot day so we spent the majority of it in the water and the shade. Laura adored splashing in the water with all her friends. I was glad I brought her swimsuit, towel and change of clothes.
She worked up such an appetite that she snarfed down lunch. Laura has been obsessed with sandwiches lately. She helped me make them to bring with us. Here she is after eating and playing.
Finally, after watching all the other kids play with them all morning, she borrowed a fishing pole. I think it may have been her favorite activity of the day. She cast off the bridge very creatively...she didn't like reeling it in so much. But, she loved the way she did it and did it over and over and over and over. After 20 minutes of fishing, we brought the fishing pole back and ended the day by sliding down the slide.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Getting Together With the Bard

Over the 4th of July the Fitzgerald family had a family reunion. We got together in Cedar City for the Utah Shakespearean Festival. We all went to dinner at Pizza and Pasta Factory then it was off to the plays.It would appear that we brought the rain with us from Florida to the Festival. It rained half the night when we were outdoors watching The Merry Wives of Windsor, so we had to watch some of the play in the bad seats of the auditorium. Fortunately, the rain stopped and we did get to see the last half of the play in the great theater. Jason was a champ during the rain and passed out supplies to everyone to keep them dry. The play was hilarious and exceptionally well done.

The next day we got family pictures taken. The cloudy weather was wonderful here because it kept us all cool and gave great lighting. I'll post some pictures from that once we get them. Fortunately, Mom just sent me this picture of the little girls all dressed up for the picture!
We then saw the matinee of H.M.S. Pinafore. The songs were stuck in my head for days! "And his fist be ever ready for the knockdown blow!"

The little girls all went together to child care while we were at the plays. They presented their tickets (yes, they got tickets just like the big kids) and I think they totally bonded. Laura keeps asking to see her friends Kiki and Tiffy. Here are all the little girls playing with Mom before the matinee. She's everyone's favorite!
The reunion was too short, but it got extended (mostly) to the next weekend too. We missed Danny's family. The annual treasure hunt at the cabin and a birthday party for Dad, Steve and Heather was a blast. Laura adored the cabin and treasure hunt. She especially loved throwing rocks in the river. Aren't the Dads so cute carrying their girls up from the river?!Another bonus was getting to meet David's "friend", Mel and her little boys. Here is Dave and his "friend" Mel (can you tell I'm vying for a title less obnoxious than "friend" here?!) bonding with the little girls over pictures that were taken in Cedar City.
It was so great to be able to spend this time with my family. These events are much too rare! I'm glad I've learned to cherish them while they're here.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Happily Ever After

So, this is the last entry where you have to hear about our trip to Disney World. Laura loved meeting all the people there and charmed everyone. She got to meet all of the princesses and many of the characters. Other park visitors also loved meeting Laura in line. The servers at the Moroccan restaurant just adored and pampered her.

Here is the compilation video we made of our experience there. We think you'll like the song we chose as background music. Thanks for the inspiration, technical assistance, and software Brian. And thanks to all his new family for coming with us. Enjoy.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Lots to See

One of the best parts of Disneyworld was that there was always something fun to see. Laura almost always had to be in arms or on shoulders so she was up high enough to see what was going on.We also got to see a lot of really great live shows. Laura danced and danced along with all her TV friends at the Playhouse Disney show. She loved the dancing at the "Beauty and the Beast" stage show. But her favorite show was "Cinderellabration" which featured all the princesses and spotlighted her favorite princess Cinderella. It took place at Cinderella's castle. Here she is taking turns watching it on mine and Jason's shoulders. The following picture is of her watching "Storytime with Belle".
Some of the shows we saw had fireworks. We took all the kids to Epcot on our night with them and watched the water and light show there. Laura did not like the big booms and kept her hands over her ears throughout the fireworks. Little Tay was so enthralled he almost fell backwards a couple times looking up so high at the fireworks. Fantasmic was the best of all the shows. There was so much to see with the effects, characters, fireworks and costumes that we were all enthralled. We were totally impressed that Laura didn't once get scared. It's amazing what telling her that "Mickey always wins" before the show can do to her perspective. Okay, and she is fearless. This is us waiting for Fantasmic to start!We also got to see a lot of cool movies as well. Laura met a lot of new characters through these movies. She totally enjoyed the new Mickey movie called "Phillharmagic", but was not thrilled with the flute flying towards her face. I believe she'll end up playing the piano. She also loved meeting the Muppets and Bug's Life characters. Here is a picture of her in her spiffy bug's eye glasses.
One of the best places to see things was on the Safari ride in Animal Kingdom. Laura loved spotting the animals and showing them all to Carrold.
Eventually I think her poor little eyes got worn out and she just had to close them. She's asleep here after seeing all the princesses and countries at Epcot.