See, this is what happens when two nerds get married and have little boys.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Home

We found a coffee table book called Spectacular Alaska. I just finished looking through it. MAN I miss home. I know that home is where my family is... but there's something about Alaska.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Feminists.

They drive me crazy. There's an article in the New York Times today, entitled "Off to Work She Should Go". It's by a woman named Linda Hirshman, author of the book Get Back to Work: A Manifesto for Women of the World. You can look it up on Amazon, but only if you want to get angry. Quote from the article:

That the most educated have opted out [of work-- ed.] the most should raise questions about how our society allocates scarce educational resources. The next generation of girls will have a greatly reduced pool of role models.

1) What, I can't be a role model to girls because I chose to stay home and raise my child? Talk about feminist garbage. They say they're all for women having choice-- as long as it's the choice to kill their unborn children. If I should want to choose to stay home and raise the baby that I brought into this world, well I've obviously been brainwashed by some patriarchal despot, and that's the end of the story.

2) Why should SAHMs (Stay at Home Moms) raise questions about how society allocates educational resources? I don't know how many of you saw the article (also in the NYTimes, I believe) quoting professors lamenting the fact that so many of their grad students chose to be full-time mothers, masters degrees and all. One of the quotes from one of these great "intellectuals" flirted with the idea of using a woman's desire or lack thereof to be a SAHM as a litmus test. If she wanted to, then she would be less likely to be accepted into her masters program because she would "waste" it. And a lawmaker in Europe (Belgium, I believe) went even further. In her country (yes, this was a woman), the state pays for higher education. This woman wanted SAHMs to have to pay the state back for their education, as they had "wasted" the state's resources.

This is sick. Sick and wrong. Nobody has the right to tell me what to do with my life-- except me. Nobody has the right to decide who should raise my child-- except James and me. Nobody can say that I wasted my education or anything else, just because I chose to be a SAHM. What are they thinking? That because I had the temerity (as they view it) to produce a child in the first place, I should be uneducated, barefoot and in the kitchen? That because I chose to work here instead of there, I don't deserve to learn and grow? That because I choose to raise kids, that makes me so unworthy that kids can't look up to me? Society will be in a pretty state then, when children shouldn't look up to their mothers.

I chose this life. If they don't want it, fine, but I do. I haven't been brainwashed, I haven't been abused, I haven't been bullied or indoctrinated. I simply love my family and my home. I love what I've accomplished here. I've even (gasp) learned and grown. This is my life, and I love it. So, Ms. Hirshman, I'll thank you to keep your indoctrinating, insulting, bullying feminist nose out of it.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

A rant

Don't you hate it when those simple things that you think you know exactly how to do don't work? And even worse, when they spectacularly don't work? I'll explain when I get the blasted thing working, gosh darn it!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Saddening news from back home :(

In the village where I grew up
Nothing seems the same
Still you never see the change from day to day
And no-one notices the customs slip away

Late last night the rain was knocking at my window
I moved across the darkened room and in the lampglow
I thought I saw down in the street
The spirit of the century
Telling us that we're all standing on the border

In the islands where I grew up
Nothing seems the same
It's just the patterns that remain
An empty shell
But there's a strangeness in the air you feel too well

-- From "On the Border," Al Stewart

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Heroes

I've been thinking the past couple weeks about the usage of the word "hero". You hear it used all the time-- Olympic athletes are "heroes", the blind guy who climbed Everest is a "hero"... actors, athletes, politicians, dare-devils, you name it, they're "heroes" in this day and age.
It's disgusting.
People do great and inspiring things. I love watching the Olympics-- what people have trained themselves to do is incredible, and the humility of (some of) the athletes is a good lesson. The first man to climb Everest and return did a great thing, to say nothing of the blind man. Even some of the celebrities have done great things. But does that make them a hero? Nope.
A hero is a person who takes substantial risks for someone else. Climbing a mountain is cool, yes, but unless you did it to save the life of someone on the other side, that doesn't make you a hero. Winning a gold medal? Not hero status.
It seems like the true heroes don't get remembered for very long, unless it's by the people closest to them and their heroism. How many people, in five years, will understand why some people find the phrase "Let's roll" moving and inspiring? How many people will remember (or even know today) the name of Liviu Librescu? In yesterday's shootings at Virginia Tech, this professor, a survivor of the Holocaust, was shot while saving his students. Lacking a barricade, he made himself into one. He blocked the door with his body, and gave his students time to run. He died, but none of his students did.
We remember tragedies for a time. We teach our children to remember the dates, the numbers. But not the names. We teach them, instead, to know names the names of actors, athletes, and reckless dare-devils. I want my children to grow up knowing and honoring names like Todd Beamer and Liviu Librescu.

Friday, April 13, 2007

A few more flower macro pictures




These are slightly cropped (Denise's inspiration). I used a flash so I could get enough depth of field.

Audio heaven...

I've piled on the hours the past couple of weeks, despite being a bit sick and having some late night projects, so Denise and I could have some spending cash. We've already got cool stuff, so it's not like we needed it. But I figured hey, lets have some fun. It's much more motivating working extra when you know you're working for something. We decided that extra time gets put 33% to savings, 33% to me, and 33% to Denise. Sorry Will.

So anyway, I now have a pair of AS-B2s in my living room. They're bookshelf speakers, being discontinued so on the uber cheap. Normally bookshelf speakers means "something you'd put on a bookshelf"... in this case, it turns out to mean "the size of a small bookshelf." They're huge. And gorgeous. They are timbre matched to our other speakers, so surround sound is still great. I'll post pics later.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

The Best Defense is a Good Offense, etc.

Willex has a walker (yes, I know that you're supposed to avoid them like the plague, that they don't develop the proper muscles, etc., but a) we don't have any stairs, and b) he likes it). James plays a game with him where he (James) sneaks up on Will (in his walker). Sneak probably isn't the right word, as James is usually out where Will can see him and get excited... what is the word... stalk! James stalks toward him-- it always reminds me of the raptors-in-the-kitchen scene from Jurassic Park. Anyway, Will used to see him coming and would try to back away (his little feet scrabbling madly while he laughed hysterically), but he could never get away fast enough. So he's now formulated an offense. As soon as he sees James coming, he charges him (full speed ahead!) with his walker. Stinkin' hilarious. I wish I had a video camera so you guys could see. He gets this excited look, and then off he goes. He also figured out how to say "Dada" today. And he likes pizza crust. A lot!
Anyway, I've got a few pictures for you. Yay for macro!


Monday, April 02, 2007

Megapost

Sorry for the long time it's been since I put anything of significance up. It's been a difficult past couple weeks... but I've gotten a lot of thinking done.
First off, James' Mom (Ronnie) came to visit last weekend. It was a lot of fun to have her here. She also came bearing the Minolta Beercan Lens... but more on that later. I miss having her handy. So does Will!
Speaking of the Willex-- he's trying hard to learn to crawl and walk at the same time. He likes to hold on to our fingers and totter around the room on his own two legs, which is a relief to my two legs (and arms!). He's also just figured out how to get both of his legs straight out behind him when he's on his hands and knees. Before, one leg would straighten, and the other would stay at a 90 degree angle to it in front of him. He pushed up onto his toes today trying to crawl (picture an upside-down V)-- I was impressed!
Anyway, with the thinking. Cara lent me her Thomas Jefferson Education book, and I've been looking through it. I'd be hesitant to believe that education is in the state described, except for the inconvenient fact that I spent 4 months at Sunset View Elementary here, working as an ESL teacher. I've seen public education, at least in this school district, and it's scary. More scary to me right now, however, is the state of my education. So I have a new goal (along with my goal to lose 20-30 pounds, figure out how to keep my living room decluttered, and all the other ones): to read the list of 100 classics at the end of the book. Possibly excluding Nietzsche, but I'll at least give him a shot. I was looking through the list, and realizing that I hadn't even heard of some of these people. I started thinking-- I've heard General Authorities quote these people without thinking twice. Reading older books like Little Women and Anne of Green Gables, characters routinely quote great authors. When I read these books as a child, I always kinda figured that I'd be able to do that too, when I grew up, or at least after college. Well, I'm 26 this week, I have a husband and a baby, and I graduated from BYU 2 years ago this fall. I'm both grown up and a graduate, and I can quote (or even paraphrase) very few of the works on this list (if anybody wants it, I'll email it to you. I copied it down out of the book). So, by the end of 2008, I want to have all these books read. Then I'll start on the 200-piece long list of children's classics. My record is significantly better whith those, but still not what I'd like. I can't decide where to start on my list though. Alphabetical order? Chronological? Regional? What do you guys think?
Anyway-- pictures. As aforementioned, Ronnie got the Minolta Beercan (telephoto) lens as a gift for me (THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU). So now we have a pretty nifty set of lenses that'll do just about anything we want. I've never had a telephoto before, so I'm still practicing taking pictures with it, but the past couple weeks we've gotten some pretty good ones with all of our lenses. Behold: The Stevenson Photo Gallery (part xxxvii, or something like that).
NOTE: Blogger's doing some weird things to the layout of the pictures, so if the captions don't quite line up with the pictures, I'm sorry! Also, it's putting tons of space between some of the pictures, so make sure you scroll all the way to the bottom of the post.


Ah, my little Bug Baby:) This is from the same expedition where James took the menu picture (see below). I think those are my Dad's sunglasses.



















With Aunt Amanda (who will have a little one of her own in December!! YAY!!!) at the Gateway Mall in Salt Lake. This picture came out overexposed (I think James forgot to turn off aperture priority), but I actually like it that way. I think it condenses it down to its essence.















Willex hitches a ride. I actually really like this picture of me. It makes me look a lot cooler than I really am:).



















Ronnie (I think. It was either her or James) took this one in front of the NuSkin building in Provo. I love the colors.











James, Ronnie, and Will. Awww:)















This settles it. I have the cutest kid in the world. Ever.
That's Ronnie holding him. It's a picture I took when I was trying to get a picture like the one above, but James and Ronnie came out blurry. Willex, however, is perfect.












Well, that's it for this Megapost. I'm gonna have James do another one with some seriously cool pictures we got the other day outside our house. Oh, one more for Eddie and Andrea. I said I didn't want you to remember me as a whale... It's not the greatest picture, but also one of the only ones where I don't look like I have a double chin:). Here you go!