Friday, December 30, 2005


That's Sean's ACT score! It came today in the mail. Not bad for taking it at the beginning of his Junior year. 28 is a very high score.... actually enough to get into BYU easy, and with his high GPA and extra-curricular activities, he is breathing a sigh of relief about getting into BYU. Great job, Sean !!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Faith in the South

First, Art and Sherry are in Houston as I type waiting to get on a plane headed back to California. Art was released this morning, and the discharge papers said "no flying" but he is doing it anyway. I will be glad when he gets home and sees his doctor. This is probably their last visit to see us, until graduations, mission farewells and wedding receptions.

I wanted to comment about how people really turn to the Savior here in the South. When I was in the ICU waiting room, I couldn't help overhearing a few conversations. They always included them talking about thier faith in Jesus Christ and prayers for their loved ones in the hospital.

At the clinic Christmas party in Livingston, they started it out with a prayer. The person saying the prayer even asked the Lord to bless me in my new job. How nice was that? People are not afraid to show their faith here. The church parking lots on Sundays are always full. I think that is a big reason why people are so hospitable in the South too. They try to go out of their way to make you feel welcomed. Our Church is small, but it is a community that has strong faith in the Lord, Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Lacey and I drove Sean to Louisiana tonight to spend a couple days with the twins who came down from Mississippi. Here is Brett, Kyle, Sean (doing a jig?) and Trevor.

Brett, Kyle, Sean, Trevor and Shane getting ready for a 3 day sleepover in Bossier City without parents.... a good idea? we shall see... I mean, how much trouble can a group of teenage boys get into unsupervised?

Lacey says goodbye to her high school buddy, Talon, as he goes off to bootcamp and his family moves to California.

Doing Better

Art had an angiogram last night and although there is damage to a few arteries to his heart, they have decided that they don't need immediate attention. His heart attack was a mild one, but he needs to see his cardiologist soon to work out a game plan on how to handle the blockages. That sure is good news. They want to keep him in the hospital for a couple more days, but I know he wants to get out and go home. What a way to end a vacation.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

In the ER last night

We had some bad news. Yesterday afternoon Sean was playing tennis with his Grandpa, when Grandpa started to feel bad. Grandma and Page were at the courts watching. Grandpa went and layed down, with shortness of breath. We ended up giving him a blessing. After a couple hours, we finally talked him to going to the ER. Well, they ended up keeping him overnight, and determined he had a heart attack! Page and Grandma rushed up to the hospital at 3 am when we got a call that he was being moved to ICU. They were supposed to fly back home tomorrow, but now looks like he will have to get an angioplasty this afternoon, and see what kind of damage is there. Grandpa had a 6-way bypass 16 years ago and a pace maker put in this last year. He wants to go home and have his own doctor take care of him, but Page told me that he probably has to stay for 8 more days. That pushes off the trip to Rexburg to get Lacey's things too. Keep us in your prayers. One good thing, the hospital he is in is ranked in the top 5% nationally for best cardiology care. He is in a good place.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Grandma Gilmore's Birthday

My Grandma, Mildred Woolsey Gilmore would have been 102 today. I loved talking to my Grandma. She had so many interesting stories to tell. She was a tough lady who worked most of her life. She raised 7 kids almost on her own during the depression. She was born in Thatcher Arizona before it was even a state. She grew up on a ranch in Safford, AZ. Her Dad had the first car ever in the Gila River Valley. She married the school teacher's son, Percy Gilmore, when she was only 16 and moved to California. My kids had the good fortune to know their great grandma too. Her family line was the one who joined the Church in Kentucky and moved to Nauvoo and traveled West to Utah with the Saints. Her grandma was one of our favorite pioneers, Mary Larsen, from Denmark. I think it's neat that she knew Mary Larsen, and we knew Grandma... there is a link there. I always thought it was terrible Grandma's birthday was the day after Christmas. Getting all her presents at the same time during the year, but we always tried to have a separate celebration and give her birthday gifts in addition to christmas gifts. She died at the age of 93 and really wanted to live to see the year 2000, but didn't make it, but she had a great life never the less. She lived at home, independently, until the day she died. I use to be amazed when I would see her on the streets of Lakewood in her orange mustang, driving, well into her 90s. I hope I live as long and can take care of myself at that age. Happy Birthday, Grandma!

We went to Church on Christmas morning

Grandpa and Grandma got to spend Christmas with us from California

Anybody want to kiss Lacey? She is under the mistletoe!... wait! is that hollyberry?

Lacey gets her penguin PJs

I get a Rose Bowl cap from Page. Fight On, Trojans! Beat Texas.

Sean is collecting Star Wars now

Christmas has arrived!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Joy to the World! The Lord is Come!

Unto Us A Child Is Born

"For unto us a child is born, unto us a child is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9:6

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosover believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16

I'm grateful for the birth of the Savior and for his atonement for me. I love the Chirstmas season, when it seems people are a little nicer, there is a little more love in the world, because of this baby born in Bethlehem over 2000 years ago. Merry Christmas to all who read this.

Me and Sean at the courthouse. I better watch out, he is almost as tall as me now.

Grandma wanted a picture with Santa in the background

Look at the gingerbread house

Courthouse all lite up

Look at the Pretty Lights

After the Joseph Smith broadcast last night, Grandma and Grandpa took me and Sean down to the Courthouse to look at the lights. They were really pretty. They may not put up the lights next year due to the cost. They are looking for a sponsor next year. Anyway, Christmas lights are all over the city. But the city went all out to decorate the building. After, we drove around town to look at more lights. I posted a few of the pictures.

Sean, Grandpa and Grandma getting in the Christmas spirit- Sean liked the "Peace on Earth" up on top of the courthouse.

Grandma and Sean tell Santa and Mrs. Claus what they want for Christmas

Friday, December 23, 2005

JOSEPH SMITH'S 200th BIRTHDAY IS TODAY. December 23, 1805-2005. The Church had a special commemoration broadcast tonight. I know Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God. I really appreciate what he did for all of us and what he went through to help restore the Church. I am also thankful Heavenly Father restored the gospel on the Earth and that we have a living Prophet today- Gordon B. Hinkley. It was a really nice broadcast. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir did a great job, as usual. One thing I thought was interesting, during the prayers they prayed for the decendants of Joseph Smith, to bring them back into the fold. The closing prayer was given by a decendant of Joseph. It was uncanny how much he looked like Joesph. The Prophet was funny when he said, we would adjurn the meeting until 100 years from now. I guess I will miss that one.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Merry Christmas to all

Well, I just have to pick up one more small gift and I will be done this year. I've gotten around to all my staff and have that out of the way too. Art & Sherry are here which is always nice. They are great grandparents to Lacey and Sean. The house is all festive and we plan on having a big Christmas Eve feast on Saturday. Then munch on leftovers on Sunday. Looks like Lacey has decided to stay home and not go back to BYU-I. I think it's a good move. She is interested in massage therapy and is looking into schools in the area. A part of me really wants her to get a degree at BYU but again, she is so excited about Massage Therapy that I think she needs to follow her dream. So looks like we will have a full house again. Page and Lacey will go up after Christmas and get her stuff from her apartment in Rexburg. She is planning on going on a mission in about a year and a half. Who knows, maybe she might go back after that to BYU. Sean has another year and a half to graduate from HS. Then I think he will be going on to BYU-Provo. He took his ACT a couple weeks ago. He said it was hard, but I know he did well. He is having his scores sent to BYU-Provo, BYU-Idaho, USC, Texas A&M. Our babies are growing up and soon we will be empty-nesters... which really isn't so bad. (smile)

Monday, December 19, 2005

We had a visit tonight of some awesome Christmas Carolers. The Bells, Grisels and Drakes paid us a visit tonight to spread some holiday cheer. They sounded wonderful. Grandma and Grandpa just arrived from California tonight, so they got a special welcome too. Merry Christmas.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Memorial on the Back Window

I don't know if this is just an East Texas thing, but I have never seen it anywhere but here. I constantly see cars (pick-up trucks and SUV's mainly) with memorials on their rear window. It usually has a cross or sunrise with something like: In Memory of my Mother,(place name here). I guess they really miss their loved one, to put a memorial on their window so all the drivers in town can see it. Now I've seen crosses along the road, every place I have lived, California, Louisiana, Montana, Texas, but have not seen this. I don't feel the need to do that, but I wanted to comment on this since I thought it was a little odd. My sister died in a car accident on the California-Nevada border, but I have never felt the need to put a cross on the location. That is another odd custom. But maybe people think it's odd I have a USC and BYU-Idaho sticker on my truck's back window. Oh yeah, and a Roar with Gilmore sticker. So if you see that truck around town, you know it's me.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

The Good In Iraq

Here are a few things I found out about Iraq from another blog today:

Did you know that 47 countries have reestablished their embassies in Iraq?

Did you know that the Iraqi government currently employs 1.2 million Iraqi people?

Did you know that 3100 schools have been renovated, 364 schools are under rehabilitation, 263 schools are now under construction and 38 new schools have been built in Iraq?

Did you know that Iraq's higher educational structure consists of 20 Universities, 46 Institutes or colleges and 4 research centers, all currently operating?

Did you know that 25 Iraq students departed for the United States in January 2005 for the re-established Fulbright program?

Did you know that the Iraqi Navy is operational?! They have 5- 100-foot patrol craft, 34 smaller vessels and a naval infantry regiment.

Did you know that Iraq's Air Force consists of three operational squadrons, which includes 9 reconnaissance and 3 US C-130 transport aircraft (under Iraqi operational control) which operate day and night, and will soon add 16 UH-1 helicopters and 4 Bell Jet Rangers?

Did you know that Iraq has a counter-terrorist unit and a Commando Battalion?

Did you know that the Iraqi Police Service has over 55,000 fully trained and equipped police officers?

Did you know that there are 5 Police Academies in Iraq that produce over 3500 new officers each 8 weeks?

Did you know there are more than 1100 building projects going on in Iraq? They include 364 schools, 67 public clinics, 15 hospitals, 83 railroad stations, 22 oil facilities, 93 water facilities and 69 electrical facilities.

Did you know that 96% of Iraqi children under the age of 5 have received the first 2 series of polio vaccinations?

Did you know that 4.3 million Iraqi children were enrolled in primary school by mid October?

Did you know that there are 1,192,000 cell phone subscribers in Iraq and phone use has gone up 158%?

Did you know that Iraq has an independent media that consists of 75 radio stations, 180 newspapers and 10 television stations?

Did you know that the Baghdad Stock Exchange opened in June of 2004?

Did you know that 2 candidates in the Iraqi presidential election had a televised debate recently?



The lack of attention on the positive in Iraq serves two purposes. It is intended to undermine the world's perception of the United States, thus minimizing consequent support, and it is intended to discourage American citizens.

Treats for Troops

OK, I did a little investigating and found a way to do something nice for our troops. It's called Treats for Troops. They are endorsed by Sean Hannity on his website and they have been featured on Fox News. You can go to their website and adopt a soldier. You can have them randomly pick one for you or you can select what branch of the military you want, what sex, what state, deployed overseas or homefront, etc... You only see their first name, but they fill out a questionnaire about themselves. You order a gift package- prices vary, and the organization ships it to them. This isn't just for Christmas, but all year long. They even have a section where you can get somebody that is about to celebrate a birthday and you can send a birthday package. These soldiers really appreciate receiving these things in the mail. It's a great way to say thank you. If interested, log onto Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Rooting for the Enemy

Is it me, or does the left in this country seem to be rooting for the enemy? Howard Dean says we cannot win the war, John Kerry says our boys are terrorizing women and children in Iraq. This is really getting to be too much. Leibermann has been trying to get the Democrats to tone it down and speak up about what we are doing in Iraq, but you don't hear much about his efforts in the press. I heard that there was a poll just taken in Iraq and 71% are excited about their futures. I bet the elections this week will have more people voting for democracy than we get out in our country (percentage wise). Re-enlistment is higher than ever in our military. Iraqi lives are getting better. I don't hear a lot about the good. Do you? It really makes me mad that the press and many of the far left keeps pounding all the negatives. I'm not against them reporting bad news, but they need to be fair and balanced and start reporting the progress too. I believe there is progress. Poor President Bush has been running all over the country trying to get the news out himself. I am so thankful he is our President and not Gore or Kerry. I want to do something for the troops this Christmas. I need to look into that.

Monday, December 12, 2005

My sister, Connie

I've been thinking about my sister, Connie today. It was 21 years ago today that she died in a car accident when the car she was in lost control and ran off the road on the California/Nevada border. She and her friend were heading to southern Utah to go see a boy. Dang, I really miss her sometimes. She was only 21, that is just way too young- so now she has been gone for the same amount of time she was here. She was the greatest sister, so much fun.

One of the funniest moments I remember when we were little kids happened when we lived in Duluth, MN. We were in a big field behind our house and Connie saw this big mound of dirt. She pretended she was a princess and sat down on her throne. A few minutes later, she is screaming. I run to her and see that there are hundreds of ants all over her. She sat on an ant hill! It must have been an odd site watching a 5 year old boy hitting his 4 year old sister, trying to smash all the ants. We finally got them all, and we learned a valuable lesson.... never sit on a pile of dirt! Hey sis!, ya know I would have done anything for ya, even smash ants. Love ya, Connie Jean!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

We finally got the tree decorated on Sunday afternoon. I had half of it done last week, but Lacey finally took pity on the thing and finished it this afternoon. Looks nice.

Here is our family room. The big tree is in the livingroom, so we set up these little trees in the family room on the fireplace. Look! my stocking is all ready for Santa to fill.

We ran into the Martins by accident in Shreveport and so we all went to dinner. On their way over to the resturant they ran into the Doans and invited them along too. It was a lot of fun spending the evening with them.

Here is a picture of the old Bishop and his Counselor.

Lacey got to hang out with Sam in Haughton.

Sean and Tia Landrum from our old Ward in Lousiana. Sean got to see a lot of old friends at the Shreveport Stake Dance last night.

Reggie Bush jumps over the competition to win the Heisman. The 7th USC Trojan to win the #1 award in the country. USC ties Notre Dame for most Heisman winners at 7. Fight On, Reggie!!!

Bush wins Heisman !!!

Reggie Bush of USC wins the Heisman Trophy last night in NYC for best football player in the country. He won by a landslide! Reggie was 1st, Vince Young of Texas was #2 and Matt Leinart was #3 (Matt won it last year). A USC player has won it the last 3 out of 4 years. Not bad. That gives USC a total of 7, which ties Notre Dame as the most Heisman winners from one school. When Matt and Reggie play in the Rose Bowl on Jan 4th, it will be the first time in history that two Heisman winners are playing a game together on the same team. Good times for USC football these days. Now we have to beat Texas in the Rose Bowl. We were in Shreveport last night for a Stake Dance. They invited the Longview Stake. So I saw that Reggie won, when we were eating dinner in Shreveport at 8 p.m. last night. I think I was the only won interested in the presentation. Sean had so much fun at the Stake Dance. All the kids in Shreveport were thrilled he came. He danced with all his Shreveport Stake friends. They want him to come back for more dances. Lacey got to hang out with her friends, Samantha and Shawn. We ran into the Martins in a store near the Stake Center, so Page and I went to dinner with them, and thus got to see Reggie win on the TV in the resturant. It is just as fast for us to drive to the Shreveport Stake Center (2 hours) as it does to drive to our own Stake Center in Longview.

Hula Christmas Party at Church. Lacey and Sean dress up and get in the spirit of a Hawaiian Luau. Sean won a prize for best Luau outfit. I bet it was the USC National Championship Hat that won it for him.

Sean is ready to show the girls his hula action with the hula hoop. They all line up to see this one!

Limbo, Sean didn't win, but had fun trying. I think Page and Lacey raised the limbo stick for Sean so he could get under it!

Everything was festive for a Christmas Luau Party. Lufkin youth invited the Nacogdoches youth too.

Lacey came to help with the party and try out the fruit-kabobs.

Youth Combined Activity on the 7th- A Christmas Hawaiian Luau. Sean is doing the hula? He has his USC straw hat on, that went over well deep in the heart of Texas....

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

75th Birthday- Pearl Harbor Day

If my Dad was alive he would have been 75 today. Happy Birthday, Pops! He died young at age 54 with ALS, or more commonly known as Lou Gehrigs Disease. That was a crazy year. I had only been home off my mission to Spain for about a year, got married in April, Dad died in July and then my sister died in a car accident in December of 1984. It started out so wonderfully and ended out so bad. My Dad was the smartest man I ever knew. I wish I was half as smart as him. But he also had a bad temper. When I lose my temper, "watch out"!, but at least I have a long fuse. The older I get, and when I look in the mirror, I think I look so much like him. I didn't think so when I was younger, but now I notice my body is just like his. He never got to see his grandkids. Thats the one thing he regretted when he came down with ALS. I regret it too, because he has some wonderful grandkids and he would have been a good grandpa. When i was a kid, I thought he had a cool birthday because it was on Pearl Harbor Day. I really appreciate everything our men and women in the military do for us to protect our freedoms. It's sad that there is so much anti-military media right now. I think we need to do more to support the troops.

Monday, December 05, 2005

The First Noel

The First Presidency Christmas Devotional was on last night. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang "The First Noel". I have never heard it sung more beautifully than the arrangement they sang last night. The First Noel is my most favorite Christmas Carol of all time. I was glad to hear it this year. We are not going to be singing it during the entire month at Sacrament meeting (I got a list of hymns for the entire month to put in the program... I print out the program for Church). So I was a little bummed, but then the MTC sang it last night, and it put me in the Christmas spirit.

Samantha and Shawn brought Lacey back home from Louisiana last night too. Page made taco soup and tacos for dinner because Sam and Lacey were craving them all week. So we all benefited. They were delicious.

I finally got some of the Christmas decorations up this weekend, and the tree is only half done. I need some help family! I still have no lights up on the house yet either. But then again its been in the 70s and 80s in Texas and maybe everyone still think it's summer. I printed out our Christmas poem today so that is done. I have been making up a Christmas Poem since we were first married. We really haven't saved any of them over the years, which is really dumb. I sure wish I would have done that to have a record of them and the highlights of our lives over the years. Every year I think, "I'm not going to make up a poem this year, it's too much work" but then my Mom always acts like it would be aweful if I didn't do one, so I keep going.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Run Reggie Run!

USC 66 UCLA 19

The most points scored on the Bruins by USC since 1929. USC's winning streak (the longest in college football) is now at 34. The game was great. I always love to see us beat UCLA. It was more lopsided than I thought. With all the hype about UCLA I thought it would be closer, at least through the first half. UCLA came into the game with only one loss and ranked 12 in the country. This win ensures our Pacific-10 Conference Championship and a place in the Rose Bowl to play Texas for the National Championship. (Texas beat Colorado today 70-3). If we win on January 4th we win our 3rd consecutive National Championship. We have never done that before. That would be awesome. This has been the greatest Trojan team I have ever seen. I hate to see Leinart graduate and Im positive Bush is going to the NFL early. 7th straight victory over UCLA. The city of Los Angeles is safe for another year. The Victory Bell is still ours! Fight On, Trojans!!!! Beat the Longhorns.

Reggie Bush is unbelievable. He WILL win the Heisman next week. Sorry Vince Young.

Matt Leinart is the greatest QB in USC History

Friday, December 02, 2005

Good Article

This is a recent article from Ann Coulter. Have to admit, she makes a lot of sense...

November 30, 2005

When Democratic Rep. John Murtha called for the withdrawal of American troops in the middle of the war, Republicans immediately leapt to action by calling Murtha a war hero, a patriot and a great American.

I haven't heard Republicans issue this many encomiums to one man since Ronald Reagan died. By now, Murtha has been transformed into the greatest warrior since Alexander the Great and is probably dating Jennifer Aniston.

In response to Murtha's demand for the "immediate withdrawal of American troops" — as The New York Times put it — President Bush called Murtha a "fine man, a good man" who served with "honor and distinction," who "is a strong supporter of the United States military." He said he knew Murtha's "decision to call for an immediate withdrawal of our troops ... was done in a careful and thoughtful way."

Vice President Dick Cheney called Murtha "a good man, a Marine, a patriot."

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Murtha is "a fine man, I know him personally ... and it's perfectly proper to have a debate over these things, and have a public debate."

National Security Adviser Steve Hadley called in his praise for Murtha from South Korea, saying Murtha was "a veteran, a veteran congressman and a great leader in the Congress."

During the House debate on Murtha's insane proposal to withdraw troops in the middle of the war, Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill., said Murtha deserved an "A-plus as a truly great American," and Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., said "none of us should think of questioning his motives or desires for American troops."

On the House floor, both Republicans and Democrats repeatedly gave Murtha rousing standing ovations. There was so much praise for Murtha that one of his Democratic colleagues asked him if he still had to attend Murtha's funeral.

What is this? Special Olympics for the Democrats? Can't Republicans disagree with a Democrat who demands that the U.S. surrender in the middle of a war without erecting monuments to him first? What would happen if a Democrat were to propose restoring Saddam Hussein to power? Is that Medal of Freedom territory?

I don't know what Republicans imagine they're getting out of all this love they keep throwing at Democrats. I've never heard a single liberal preface attacks on Oliver North with a recitation of North's magnificent service as a Marine. And unlike Murtha, who refuses to release his medical records showing he was entitled to his two Purple Hearts, we know what North did. (These Democrat military veterans are hardly shrinking violets when it comes to citing their medals, but they get awfully squeamish when pressed for details.)

We also know what Rep. Randy Cunningham, R-Calif., did to earn his medals. One of only two American Navy aces that the Vietnam War produced, Cunningham shot down five MiGs, three in one day, including a North Vietnamese pilot with 13 American kills. Cunningham never did something as insane as proposing that we withdraw troops in the middle of a war, but this week he did admit to taking bribes.

And yet, no Democrat breathed a word of Cunningham's unquestioned heroism before rushing to denounce him as "the latest example of the culture of corruption" — in the words of Rep. Nancy Pelosi.

Sen. Teddy Kennedy didn't issue a 20-minute soliloquy on what a wonderful man Judge Robert Bork was as a human being before attacking his judicial philosophy. Kennedy just laid into Bork like he was George Lincoln Rockwell.

Speaking of which, George Lincoln Rockwell, former head of the American Nazi Party, served in the military during World War II. Are we obligated to praise his war service before disputing his views?

CNN's Bill Schneider summarized the Republican love-fest for Murtha by saying that House Republicans "started calling him some very ugly names — cowardly, shameful, he wanted to cut and run, he wanted to surrender to the terrorists, emboldening the enemy." Are we all looking at the same "intelligence"?

The only Republican congressman who did not offer to have sex with John Murtha on the House floor was Jean Schmidt, R-Ohio. While debating Murtha's own proposal to withdraw American troops from Iraq in the middle of a war waged to depose a monstrous dictator who posed a threat to American national security, Schmidt made the indisputably true remark that Marines don't cut and run. (She was right! Murtha voted against his own proposal.)

Schmidt's precise words were: "I received a call from Col. Danny Bubp. He also asked me to send Congressman Murtha a message, that cowards cut and run, Marines never do." Bubp later said — pointlessly — that he was not calling Murtha a coward. Neither was Jean Schmidt. (These guys are very brave facing down the VC, but cower before the MSM.)

Now Schmidt is Emmanuel Goldstein, subjected to the liberals' Orwellian two-minutes hate, and not one Republican will defend her. If Republicans were one-tenth as rough with the congressman who wants to withdraw troops in the middle of a war as they are on a congresswoman who calls it cowardly to withdraw troops in the middle of a war, we might have a functioning Republican Party.