Saturday, August 30, 2008

USC wins big

USC 52 Virgina 7

USC looked like the nation's number 1 team today. Our QB, Mark Sanchez had a dislocated knee just a couple weeks ago, but you couldn't tell today. He was on fire. He threw three touchdown passes today and 6 different players scored. The outcome was never in doubt. Fight On, Trojans!!!

Also congrats to BYU today who has now won 11 straight. They beat Northern Iowa today in Provo.

Happy 26th Birthday, Andy

Andy survived a match against Ernests Gulbis from Latvia who also celebrates a birthday today. Andy lost the first set and was losing the second, when he had to dig down deep. The US Open second round match started on Friday night and didn't finish until the wee hours of this morning. I turned it on right before the comeback (I'm not taking credit). But to watch Andy fight and claw his way back was good to see. Keep fighting Andy!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Well it's not Mitt Romney

John McCain picked his VP Running mate today. It's Sarah Palin, the governor of Alaska. All I know about her is what the press has reported thus far.

she has been governor for 2 years
she was a mayor
she helped run a small business
5 children- one going to Iraq, one with down-syndrome
Washington DC outsider

I don't know a lot about her, but so far so good. I like what I have heard from her speech too.
I really wanted Mitt Romney, but McCain went another way. I actually feel good about the ticket and plan to support the GOP. I would have had to sit out the election if he chose Mike Huckabee, so I am thrilled about Mike not getting picked MORE than who got picked.

My reaction on the Democratic Convention:

1. The only good speech was that of former President Bill Clinton- have never supported him but he made a good arguement to vote Democrat.
2. All the crying people during the Obama speech, was just strange to me
3. The huge crowds in the stadium for Obama was SUPER IMPRESSIVE
4. Obama just sounded like a typical Democratic nominee in his acceptance speech to me. I was expecting a lot more.
5. I get a kick how they say "Bush-McCain" to tie McCain to Bush. My impression has always been that they really didn't like each other too much. And guess what people, Bush is not running again!
6. I didn't think the backdrop looked like a greek temple, it looked like Washington buildings to me.
7. Obama has cute kids.
8. Democrats are too bitter and promise the moon, but never deliver

So what do you think?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Rafael Castillo

Sean has been in Argentina over a week now and on Tuesday we got his first email. He sounds terrific. I have to say I am much more excited now that he is in Argentina. When he was in the Missionary Training Center in Provo, I just flat out missed him all the time. But now it is like living his adventure with him in Argentina when I hear from him and I can't wait to hear what he has been doing and experiences he is having.

These are pictures I found on Google of Rafael Castillo, Argentina. That is the city he is in right now. His first companion is Elder Torres from Paraguay, and the guy doesn't know any English. Wow, if that doesn't make Sean learn Spanish, I don't know what will. However, Sean really likes his companion and sounds like they get along good. His companion goes home to Paraguay in 5 weeks. There are two other Americans that live in the apartment so at least Sean has some translators. Two funny things in his letter: there are millions of dogs on the street, andhe can understand the 3 year old children, so he likes to talk to the kids.

Rafael Castillo is a big city just outside of Buenos Aires. He is not too far from the Buenos Aires Temple either. There is a Ward in Rafael Castillo and he has already had to get up in Sacrament Meeting and bear his testimony. He can bear his testimony, pray, and share the Joseph Smith story pretty well in Spanish.

It's winter in South America and the water drains counter-clock wise instead of clock wise down there.

We are very happy and excited for Elder Gilmore!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Olympics are over

The Olympic closing ceremonies were on television last night. Kudos to China!!! The games were fantastic and China was a good host. Too bad their government is so oppressive. Maybe their protesters can be let out of jail now that the world is gone? ok enough politics.

My top 10 olympic moments:

1. Michael Phelps winning 8 gold medals! Unbelievable. Every race I was holding my breath wondering if he was going to make it. He usually not only won, but broke the world record in the process. There were two races that were nail biters. You know which ones!

2. US Men's Water Polo wins silver! Ok, they didn't win gold, but they surprised everyone even making it into the gold medal game against Hungary. Hungary has a professional team made up of 30 year olds who have played together forever. The USA team is made up of 20 year old college students who don't usually play together as a team, so to get silver is fantastic. Besides I have secretly wanted to be a water polo player..... if I was in good shape.....

3. Argentina wins gold medal in soccer. YEAH Argentina!!!! I was more thrilled when they beat Brazil to get into the gold medal game against Nigeria, but I was so happy that Argentina defended their gold medal from the last Olympics in Athens. Doesn't hurt that Sean is living in Argentina for me to support them.

4. Nastia and Shannon- USC Girls Gymanstics- all around- gold and silver. First time in history that USA won gold and silver in this event. Kept China from a clean sweep.

5. Federer wins gold for Switzerland, Mens Doubles Tennis. I haven't been the biggest Roger fan, but with the tough year he is having, glad to see him win a gold medal. He even got emotional on the podieum.

6. US Men win Volleyball gold. Amazing how they rallied and stayed focused after members of coach's family were murdered in Beijing.

7. US Men win bronze in Team Mens Gymnastics. They weren't even expected to medal. We lost our two top guys to injury, yet they showed heart and were on fire to beat out Germany, Russia and South Korea for bronze.

8. USA's Torres wins some silvers in Women's Swimming. She almost won gold, lost by a fingernail. And she is 41 years old! Enough said !!

9. China wins all diving gold medals in men's and women's diving. Now that is dominance.

10. US Men's basketball wins gold. Back on top again. USA is back on top after being knocked off the last couple of olympics, and they did it in convincing fashion. Of course, our team is full of professionals. I think I liked it when we had to play amatuers, but they won the gold with Kobe, LeBrone and the gang. I was also happy to see Spain win silver (I lived there for 2 years) and Argentina won bronze (Sean living there now).

Of course, there were hundreds of other great moments. I loved the olympics from start to finish. All the athletes and all the countries came together and there were many more great stories.

What were your favorite moments?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

We got to talk to Sean !!!

Well, Sean made it to Argentina this morning. The American Airlines website said the flight landed at 9 a.m. (6 a.m. Mountain Time). So I can just imagine he has got out of customs, hopped in a mini van and arrived to the mission home already. I can't believe my son is in Argentina.
Yesterday was a great day. Sean was able to call us for about 10 minutes in the Salt Lake City Airport before getting on his flight to Dallas. Then about 4 hours later he called again from Dallas because he had a two hour layover. He sounded so good, and I loved hearing his voice. I was able to speak Spanish with him and he was doing very well. This was a kid that took 5 years of German in school, and just started learning Spanish two months ago in the Missionary Training Center.
He was excited to go to Argentina. He is very prepared to serve this mission. I just got such a boost talking to him that I have a great idea for the missionary department..... you should allow missionaries to call home once a month, even if for only 15 minutes.... well, I thought it was a good idea.....

Saturday, August 16, 2008


Michael Phelps won his 8th gold Olympic medal today in Beijing. He has done what no other human has done in the Olympics (of the modern era). He broke Mark Spitz record of 7 golds in a game and he has more gold medals from all olympics (14 golds) than any other athlete. He broke 7 world records while he was at it too.

I am really enjoying the Olympic games. Especially the swimming and gymnastics so far. So what's been your favorite moment?

Friday, August 15, 2008

Army of Helaman

Click on this pic to make it bigger ! Mindy Maxwell, mom of Elder Maxwell (on the right end of picture) sent us this. These four Elders have been sharing a dorm room for the last two months learning Spanish and preparing to go to the Argentina Buenos Aires West Mission. They leave on Monday and arrive early Tuesday morning.

They truly are as the Army of Helaman.....

(from Left to Right): Elder Stokes, Elder Sabey, Elder Gilmore and Elder Maxwell

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Going to Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires, Argentina
We got a letter from Sean from the Mission Training Center (MTC) in Utah. He met with the Consul for Argentina on Tuesday and got his flight plans. Our baby boy (well, is 19 still considered a baby?) will be flying to Buenos Aires on Monday afternoon. He will be in Argentina for 22 months. We won't see him for two years, but he will get to call from Dallas, TX during his layover before the last leg of the flight to Buenos Aires. Then only email/letter contact once a week for the remainder of the two years. He will get to call us two times a year on Christmas and Mother's Day, so we will get 4 phone calls!
He is excited to serve a two year mission for our Church and has learned a lot of Spanish over the last two months in Utah. For his Mom and Dad, we feel Argentina is so far away, but we hear it is a beautiful country, with friendly people, delicious food, tango, gauchos, and awesome futbol.
Juan Miguel (Sean Michael) we wish you a safe journey. WE LOVE YOU !!!