Monday, January 30, 2012

I Have The Most Wonderful Wife In The World

6 months ago I married a practically perfect woman. She's amazing.

Tonight, we went to dinner at the same Italian place we went for our engagement and then we went pants shopping for me. Then, some home teaching. Goodnight, to one and all.

Sunday, January 29, 2012


The GOP caucus is Saturday February 4, 2012. You must be a registered Republican voter, bring a valid government issued ID, and come in person for the duration of the caucus (I think it lasts about 40 min or so).

I plan on being there and supporting my preference of candidate-- Mitt Romney.

Find your caucus location and meeting time here--

Monday, January 23, 2012

Sunday, January 22, 2012



Newt Gingrich has a MA (Master's) and a PhD (Doctorate) in modern European history from Tulane University (LA). His dissertation was entitled "Belgian Education Policy in the Congo: 1945–1960".

Mitt Romney has a JD (Doctor of Law) and an MBA (Masters in Business) from Harvard University. He earned both degrees simultaneously and graduated in the top 5% of his class. He was also valedictorian of BYU after first gaining entrance to Stanford University.

OPINION: The guy with the better grades and education based in law and business will be more helpful to America than the guy with degrees in European history and a focus on Belgium's influence in the Congo.


Newt Gingrich was made the US Speaker of the House of Representatives from 1995-1999. Prior to that he spent six years as the House Minority Whip. In 1997 several House Republicans attempted to remove him as Speaker claiming his public image was a liability--their plan was give him an ultimatum to resign or be voted out. In 1998 he faced another rebellion in the house and agreed to step down from both the position of Speaker as well as a member of the House. He had made the following comment only 1 day after being reelected "I'm willing to lead but I'm not willing to preside over people who are cannibals. My only fear would be that if I tried to stay, it would just overshadow whoever my successor is." He left office in 1999, about two years after he had been charged with ethics charges on 84 accounts. That event, 15 years ago yesterday, was a first for any Speaker of the House in the history of America. Approximately 88% of House Republicans asked that the Speaker be reprimanded for his ethics.

Newt Gingrich ended two marriages in divorce with infidelity widely accepted as the reason for their end. He was to blame. One of his daughters from his first marriage (he has two, both from the first marriage) has joined his campaign.

Newt Gingrich's 2012 presidential campaign hit a large snag on June 9 and June 21, 2011 when he went on an unplanned vacation and several key members of his staff including his longtime spokesman and his campaign manager quit citing internal disagreements about the direction of the campaign. This occurred while he was on vacation.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid publicly announced in January 2012 that if Gingrich became the president of the USA he would promise to make it his personal mission to make sure Gingrich is a one term president.

President Ronald Reagan mentioned Newt Gingrich once in his diaries. It was in response to a bad idea that Newt had given him.

Mitt Romney was the Republican Governor of Massachusetts from 2003-2007. While in office his major credentials include having balanced the budget and putting in place a $2 billion rainy day fund, signing in Massachusetts heath care reform, expanding scholarships for college students in the #1 ranked education system in the USA, and overseeing a series of spending cuts and fee increases. He took no salary as governor.

Mitt Romney is the father of 5 sons who have all attended prestigious universities and married. He has been married to the same woman, Ann Romney, for 42 years. Four of his sons have joined him on the campaign trail--the fifth has expressed a desire to be there but a duty to finish his medical school residency.

Mitt Romney was the CEO of the 2002 Olympics. He joined the effort while they were scandal ridden and projected to lose money. Instead, they became one of the most financially successful winter olympics in history as well as one of the most watched.

Mitt Romney was hired by Bain & Company, a management consulting firm, in 1977. The head of Bain & Company offered Romney a partnership deal in a spinoff company, a private equity investment firm, called Bain Capitol in 1984. Romney was extremely careful in his decisions on investments. His first major success was in 1986 with Staples Inc. They soon moved from start ups to leveraged buyouts. Some of the companies they helped turn around include Dominos Pizza, Sports Authority, Artisan Entertainment, Brookstone, and others. During the 14 years Romney headed the company Bain Capital's average annual internal rate of return on realized investments was 113%. Romney's work was heavily data driven and averse to risk. And, in 1990, Romney was asked to return to his original employer, Bain & Company, which was facing financial collapse. He became its CEO in January 1991 but took no effective salary. Within one year he had turned Bain & Company and its 5,000 employees around, given it back to new leadership, and returned to Bain Capital.

Mitt Romney served as a local lay clergy in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was a Bishop from 1981-1986. And from 1986-1994 he presided over the Boston Stake with its approximately 4,000 church members.

Mitt Romney despite losing the race for the presidency in 2008 emerged in 2012 with a very powerful campaign structure. He has consistently earned more donations than any of his fellow Republican opponents and has garnered far more endorsements. These endorsements include prominent leaders and politicians including--
*Governor Chris Christie (New Jersey)
*Governor Nikki Haley (South Carolina)
*Governor Bob McDonnell (Virginia)
*Governor Tim Pawlenty (Minnesota, 2003-2011)
*Governor Jon Huntsman Jr (Utah, 2005-2009)
*Governor Robert Ray (Iowa, 1969-1983)
*Governor John Sununu (New Hampshire, 1983-1989)
*Governor Frank Keating (Oklahoma, 1995-2003)
*V President Dan Quayle (1989-1993)
*Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole (-1996)
*Senator John McCain
*Senator Scott Brown
*Senator Kelly Ayotte
*Senator John Thune
*Senator John Hoeven
*Senator Lisa Murkowski
*Senator Mark Kirk
*Senator Orrin Hatch
*Representative Ros-Lehtinen (Florida)
*Representative Diaz-Balart (Florida)
*Representative Womack (Arkansas)
*Representative McCotter (Michigan)
*UN Ambassador Bolton (2005-2006)
AND, President George H W Bush has indicated Romney is the "best"


Mitt Romney has had 1 wife, 1 religion, and has released his jobs plan, a book explaining his positions, and answered countless questions in interviews.

Newt Gingrich has had 3 wives, 3 religions, has released no jobs plan--no number of projected jobs, has released no book explaining his positions, and has dodged questions about his former marriage in a recent CNN debate. He has also made countless incendiary statements which have garnered him considerable political hype akin to a Lady Gaga or a Katy Perry. Among his stunts he has posted his taxes for one year on the internet during a debate and attacked Mitt Romney for not doing likewise DURING the debate. This is after he called for no attack ads and reversed his own position. He similarly did attack Mitt Romney's campaign claiming that until they release the taxes he would not trust them on anything. Thus, he took direct aim at Romney's character amidst Romney asserting that he had been "honest in his dealings".

On Tuesday Jan 24, 2012 Mitt Romney released his tax returns for 2010 and 2011. This is more than any other candidate. It is widely regarded by tax professionals cited by Forbes, CNN, etc that his finances were legally maintained and taxed properly and that he gave a considerable amount to various charity (roughly $6 million). He also paid a full 10% to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in tithes.

Newt Gingrich may be in trouble for his own taxes according to Forbes' Janet Novack's report. “Newt Gingrich avoided tens of thousands of dollars in Medicare payroll taxes in 2010 by using a technique the Internal Revenue Service has consistently and successfully attacked.” This technique has been dubbed the "John Edwards Loophole". More here

Sunday, January 15, 2012

A Chicken For My Table

Many women in my life decorate their homes with chickens. Maybe it's because we're from Tomball, Texas or maybe it's because it's country chic. I don't know, but what I do know is that after I got married Sister Egbert gave me my very first chicken which now sits prominently in our living room. I love this chicken. Thank you Sister Egbert!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Accident

Just before Christmas Joe, Jillian and I were driving to work. On the way we spun out of control and totaled our car.

Where we hit the wall.
Where we hit the railings.

That corner was where we started spinning... all the way down to here.

We were very blessed in that no one was hurt and that the insurance company covered a lot of the damage. We were able to find a new car for a very good price that runs even better than our last car. Here's a fantastic photo of the new car we bought! Upgrade!

Celebrations and Fun for Christmas 2011

This year Christmas filled our hearts with happiness and peace. We arrived Christmas Eve in Houston to spend the holidays with the family there. It was a first time having everyone together for anything.

We feasted like kings and each gained more weight then we'd care to admit. This included trips to Cheesecake Factory, Whataburger, P.F. Changs, an all you can eat pizza buffet, and sizable portions of hot queso dip, holiday punch, or even lobster alfredo.

Christmas Eve we read the Luke 2 account and Callister/Reynolds/Meservy family favorite, "Jest For Christmas".

On Christmas we awoke and spoke with Elder Meservy on his mission in France via Google Hangout (a hip, free, video chat program). He was merry and fun. He even called my sister E to repentance in French per my request. He regaled us with the news that he is recording at least one witnessed miracle each day in his journal. Missionaries, of course, frequently experience wonderful and special miracles.

Next, we opened our Christmas gifts and went out for the traditional Sears Christmas scavenger hunt. We all piled into the car with and took a dog with us--we searched the city, the animal groomers, and even the "roach coach". There we were chased down by a foreigner who thought we were up to no good. The reward was sound.

At church we enjoyed fabulous musical performances and then a very stimulating talk by newly returned veteran Bro. Lamkin. We made it barely on time.

During the week we zipped over to the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum at Texas A&M in Houston. This was a definite highlight--I gained a new perspective and renewed respect for George H. W. Bush. His determination, service, and standing alongside and for right were inspiring. We also saw a hawk or an eagle up close near the protected grave of his young daughter.

Settlers of Catan, Ticket to Ride, Bang, Scrabble, checkers, and chess never stopped running. We watched Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, The Rise of the Planet of Apes, Thor, Up, Scrooge (musical), and more. We also caught a glimpse of Jimmer Fredette and the Kings beating the LA Lakers.

On New Year's Eve the Fike's threw their annual fireworks display and it was phenomenal. I am from Las Vegas but I doubt I have seen anything that good that close up since I was very young if ever. We shot off Roman Candles and let the suppliers go to work on the big guns. There were, of course, all the fun garnishes like smoke bombs, sparklers, and more. It was an 'A' in my book.

Texas is filled with very kind and very polite people. Christmas with family in Texas was delightful. We definitely are looking forward to Christmas with the Vegas family in 2012 too.

Thank you to J & E for the photos--hope you don't mind that I nabbed them.