Tuesday, December 7, 2010


So I got a phone call today and an email last week. They both can be summed up by saying I am still jobless.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Best Night of my Life

So Gini and I are engaged. Sorry I didn't let you know if you are finding out this way. She posted her story on her blog here. So my story is going to go a long way back so bear with me. October General Conference Gini was in Idaho watching Lori play volleyball. I was in Newton with my brother and his family, Gini was going to come down Saturday afternoon and we were going to watch conference together Saturday afternoon and Sunday. We had kinda talked about marriage but we weren't sure. I don't know exactly what happened but Sunday after conference was over we were on Greg's deck sitting and talking and I said, "would you like to get married?" She looked at me and said ,"Yes" in a sweet soft voice. So she came over and sat on my knee, at which moment Greg's patio furniture could take no more and cracked and ruined our picturesque moment.

Fast forward two months, the ring is being made, but we said we wouldn't make ANY plans until I proposed and we told people. So I had talked to her dad last Sunday and we were just waiting on the ring basically. I hadn't heard back from the jeweler and I was getting kind of worried. He had told me he would have it done by 10th so I could propose around Christmas time. That was the plan. Well Friday morning I just thought you know the ring isn't going to be done anytime soon and I am tired of waiting. So I saddled up and found a ring that looked exactly like hers at Nordstrom in SLC. So I had my mom go get it.

I get out of class, wreck her car, and then head to my parents. I get there and get the ring and we mess around with my Mom's tree for a bit when I am like gini let's just go look at Christmas lights. So we head out. There were two houses that I really wanted to go visit. One was Greg's old bus driver's house, he always had such a HUGE production. I remember going and just being wowed and I wanted to go there and propose there. Well we go by house 1 and just drive by. Then we go to the bus driver's house. he must have passed away because there wasn't a single light on the house. I was like ohhh crud I can't go to temple square that would be way too cheesy. I mean who gets engaged there? Zoobies. So I go back to house 1 and say lets get out and go for a walk.

So we are walking around this house and I have been setting my proposal up from the beginning. I always ask her, "would now be a good time to propose?" Which I follow up with some "fake proposal" some were funnier than the other. So I destroyed any faith she had in me so she wouldn't see it coming. So we are looking at lights and I run my spill of timeliness of proposal and then hit one knee. Which unleashes a fury of blows that resembles something like I got growing up from one of three older brothers. She keeps saying Eric knock it off, get up and smacking me. So I do the only thing I can do, rush the delivery and pull out the ring. At which moment she goes Eric I love you so much you are such a blessing in my life. We kissed and that was history.

The miracle she is referring to is the fact I didn't cry at any point on Friday night.

Friday, November 19, 2010


I love blogging. I love it because it causes me to think about my family and whenever I am having a rough or tough time, not that I am right now, I just get so full of hope thinking about them.

Today at Dell things were a wash, I had one good interview, one okay one, and one that I had already interviewed with the lady once before. So yea the only thing left to do now is wait. By the end of the month I should have heard back from both jobs to see what they think. I am curious to find out what is going on.

Today I read a talk by President Monson about gratitude. It made me think about my life, especially about the way I acted today. Today I felt really put out by the fact that I have had so many interviews this week and one didn't go exactly how I dreamed it was suppose to go. I was upset with myself, and especially upset with the interviewer. I realize now it was the Lord telling me that I need to be more grateful for everything.

"My brothers and sisters, to express gratitude is gracious and honorable, to enact gratitude is generous and noble, but to live with gratitude ever in our hearts is to touch heaven." - President Monson

I really enjoyed this quote. I love it actually. I need to be grateful and humble. I felt bad this morning because I had been comparing this job to Disney a lot and it was unfair to Dell. I need to be more grateful for everything I have in my life.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


Sorry to all my faithful blog readers. I know I haven't posted yet and this week has been a pretty exciting week. Let's recap to date.

Sunday night at 11 PM Gini dropped me off at the airport, I took a red-eye to Atlanta and then onto Orlando. It was totally weird. I hate flying red-eyes. Anyways, while we are taxi-ing I make chit chat with the lady next to me. She is flying home to North Carolina from a writer's convention in San Francisco.

Me: What is your book about?
Her: Angels among us, but not your nice angels these are kinda scary ones.
Me: What made you want to write about that?
Her: I had a pretty supernatural childhood
Me: What did you live in a haunted house or something?
Her: My parents were exorcists.
Me: Okay

Yea so I quizzed her about that for a while got some good stories then went to sleep. I got to Disney and had the time of my life. I love Disneyworld and even if I don't get a job there I will probably go back. We are at a reception party meeting and greeting when who shows up? That is right Mickey Mouse! With a professional photographer. I run to the front of the line. I got a sweet picture with him, I have it in a frame they gave all the interviewers and I show it off whenever I get a chance. It is driving Gini nuts. Well during the meet and greet a guy comes up to me and says Eric tell me about bow hunting elk. My jaw hits the floor. I have had that as a personal item on my resume since who knows when and he is the first one to bring it up. He lets me gush and I talk about how much fun it is, how hard it is, and how it is more mental than anything. Then for dinner what do they serve? Elk, so he brings it up to the table of 12 that I am at and I go through again about killing elk. I am in 7th heaven. I grabbed the menu to prove to Gini that hunting does pay off.

So then the interviews were nuts, sprinkled with some of the best food and happiest times of my life and I am back home Tuesday night. I don't want to bore people....

I left this morning for Austin to interview with Dell in the morning I am really looking forward to it also. I am lucky to have so many great companies that are giving me a chance to interview with them. I am happy and safe. Things couldn't be better. I will let you all know what happens.

If by chance I see you around in the next two weeks at any family function, be sure that I will have my Mickey Mouse picture with me. Basically it is the biggest accomplishment of my life.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Good Times

So things have been going awesome, super busy but awesome. Between this week and next, I have two 3-5 page papers due, 4 tests, a 2 page case study, other various assignments, and more volleyball than I know what to do with. PS Go Bengals. Anyways, I have been uber busy but the job offer from Navistar has been consistently on my mind. On Tuesday Elder Costa of the Seventy came and spoke on campus. He talked about leaving the harbor of safety and enjoying the voyage of life outside of Utah. I felt so strongly that I need to look at jobs outside of Utah and I felt really good about Navistar. That night Gini and I were talking about me taking the job at Navistar, I felt good about it and really like the offer. I told her I was probably going to call them tomorrow (today) and commit. She told me to wait a little bit and go to the temple first. I was kinda surprised but I agreed and so I put it off. I planned on going either Thursday or this weekend. Well tonight something amazing happened.

Gini and I were sitting at my house just chatting when my phone rang, I didn't recognize the number but I answered anyways. I hear a familiar voice on the phone say hey Eric how is it going this is Sam. Sam was a BYU alum that I interviewed with last Friday from Disney. In their park and recreation department. I know such a hard job. The conversation proceeded thus:

Me: Sam how are you?
Sam: I am doing great how are you?
Me: Crazy with school but good now that I am not sick anymore, (he told me during the interview he would call and let me know either yes or no)
Sam: Hey we want to have you out to Orlando on the 15th and 16th for second round interviews Me (in my mind): What the fetch, are you kidding me? I thought you were calling to tell me thanks but no thanks
Me (from my mouth): Whoa that would be awesome, lets do it.
Sam: Here is the information
Gini (in her mind): I hope he gets a job with Disney so I get in free to Disneyland
Gini (in her mouth): Congrats Eric

So we both are kinda surprised and we start talking about what to do with Navistar and Disney now knocking on my door. When my phone rings again I see it is an 800 number and I was like hrm I guess Sam is calling me back. I answer

Me: Hello
Man: Is this Eric Phillips?
Me: Yes
Man: Hi my name is Stuart, I am with Dell
Me: (looking incredibly shocked) Hey Stuart how are you?
Stu: We want to have you out for interviews on the 18th and 19th
Me: Done, what do I have to do
Stu: I'll email you
Me: Stu great talking to you talk to you soon

These conversations were a little more full and exciting than this but I just shortened it up for you. When I got off the phone with Dell I looked at Gini and she was all smiles, which is probably what I was. It was so nuts. Then she screamed and ran into my arms, it was magical. So we are both just shocked because in a fifteen minute time window, I got two invites for second round interviews.

So that week is going to be nuts, Monday and Tuesday in Florida; Thursday and Friday in Texas. Good thing I worked at Savage this last summer and this trip is cake.

So it just got me thinking about how blessed I am. I wanted to find a job outside Utah to start my career and I have been blessed with some wonderful opportunities to do just that. I think of all the kids from the Marriott School who have no job offers, let alone no second round interviews and it just floors me that I have one offer already and two second round interviews coming up. In the words of one of my blog inspirators, I am seriously so blessed.

So my living options for next year just grew, from Chicago based, to now include Orlando, FL; Austin, TX; Anaheim, CA; and Burbank, CA. Life is really good for me right now. I can't express in words how grateful I am for the many blessings God has given me in my life right now. I am shocked that of so many wonderful candidates I have been selected for the processes I have been chosen for. I don't think it is anything I have done, I really owe it all to God for these great opportunities.

I'll keep you updated.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Five months

So Thursday was five months since Gini and I had gone out on our very first date. I wouldn't have known this if she hadn't reminded me about it. So for our 5 month anniversary we went to Corn Belly's.
This is us in an oversized chair. It was a lot of fun. I have enjoyed the past 5 months immensely.

So I went through the interview process. It was a lot easier than I ever expected. Last year when I wanted to be an investment banker and I really geared up for those interviews makes these interviews a little bit easier. So I flew home, I got home and was walking through the airport writing an email to the people at Navistar thanking them. I sent one off and immediately got a call back from them. They said they wanted to offer me a job to start in June. I was shocked, considering 2 weeks ago I first heard about this opportunity. So now I have to decide what I am going to do.

Love you all.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Today I made the biggest mistake of my life, there is no going back from this. I flew first class.

Now that I have your attention, I will explain. So with my last trip to Canada I got a status with Delta. This morning I show up at the airport all excited because I get to board in zone 2, early boarding. I meet up with a nice girl from Westminister College to travel to Chicago together. We both are interviewing for the same job. Well I am sitting there and the attendant says, passenger Phillips check in at the gate. I go up and bam first class ticket. So I was like shaking and I didn't tell my travel buddy that I got to go first class. Anyways, I get up and go on the plane and she was like uhhh what? Well I sit down in first class on the same row as the Dean for the accounting school at BYU. He looks at me and says, what are you doing here. I coolly respond, I always fly first class. So I didn't mind the fact our plane was two hours late. I enjoyed basically the all I could eat food in first class and the real glasses, no plastic cups. But yea I will never look at coach the same.

I got the Chicago and settled in my hotel in Lisle. They had the meet and greet tonight and I was really excited. I was the only BYU student, there was an alum who left early but he showed me the ropes for a little bit. It was interesting to be at a recruiting event where they served liquor.

tomorrow is a big day and I am off to bed.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Meet Virginia....or Gini.

Pictures as I promised

I was lucky enough to work in California this summer when Gini and her family were there on vacation. They took me to the beach and I saw in the ocean for the first time in my life. It was a great trip. Thanks Savage.
This is after the day at the beach during the same trip to Newport. After a sweet 24th of July swimming in Newton and a day at the beach, I was red.

Gini came up and visited me after my deer hunt. I wanted to put a picture up of my buck but I doubt that would have gone over really well. I love Newton. I love the first picture also.

Gini and I went to Strawberry Days rodeo. It wasn't as good as the Draper Days rodeo but it was up there ;)

Gini's little sister plays volleyball at Idaho State, basically she is a big deal. We usually travel up there for her home games. It is so much fun. I am learning so much about volleyball.
Gini and I went for a midnight chair ride at Sundance, there was a full moon out and so BYU let every zoobie out for the weekend it seemed like. We got there right before the line got crazy long.

The best thing, I don't think I can narrow it down to one, is the fact she loves baseball. She bought me this polo even though she absolutely hates the Yankees.

So here is an update into my life family. I wanted to let you all know what I have been doing and why I have been missing family dinners.

This week has been awesome. On Monday we had a guest speaker, he is my professor's son and just retired at age 30 from Google. Before he left he was in charge of Google's Asia arm. Loaded is spelled very similar to his name. He came in and talked to our class regarding careers. He graduated from London School of Economics (THE top economics school in the world). It was different because you could tell he had fallen away from the gospel. It was sad, a girl asked about having time for a family during a career and he scoffed at her. Anyways, it got to me. It got me nervous and sad about my career. I haven't had much success comparative to my friends who are interviewing all over right now. I was fine with it until this talk. I got kind of worried and as soon as those worries manifested themselves I got a job interview.

I got an email last week for an interview with International Trucks, Navistar is the actual name but International is the public name, the interview never got setup so I followed up. I got an email Tuesday morning for a Wednesday phone interview. I was very excited. I got to the phone interview and nailed it. I feel I did better than I had done in any interview before. At the end I asked him why BYU and their recruiting process. He told me they usually only interview BigX schools, but the new VP of Finance for the company is a BYU alum. The BYU alum was suppose to do the BYU stuff but his schedule changed and he couldn't but they already committed to the school to interview X amount of students. Right now I am thinking ohh great so I am just a formality. Well thanks for the practice. He told me he would call me the next day to let me know what was up. I got a call this morning. Of 150 applicants, I am one of 30 selected for 2nd rounds in Chicago next week. So Thursday morning I fly again. I hope I go Delta and I get to use my new Elite status to board early.

I am excited for this job interview and the opportunity. I am grateful for the answer to my prayer for an interview. This just showed me how much the Lord loves me. I don't know if I will take the job, I don't know if I will get the job but I asked God for this opportunity and He gave it to me. I wanted it more to have something to tell my classmates when they are talking about interviews and I don't feel like a loser. God is so loving though He will let me do this. That simple, ask and you really shall receive.

Until next time.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


So this past Sunday we had a going away party for my awesome little sister. She is moving to Virginia to take a high-profile job with a large corporation. Translation? She's a big deal and I love her.

As I was there visiting with my cousin, she asked why I don't blog anymore. I was like really? You read my blog? Combine this with my mother pleading to know what is going on in my life and I am back.

I moved to Orem, best decision of my BYU career. There was one time this summer when I went to visit my old house in downtown Provo, and while I was driving through Provo I was like I am never living here again. I got a house with four other guys, a little bit of a change from the Frat House I lived in last year of 16 guys but I am not complaining. We got a fixer-upper and did a number on it. I have my own room, complete with desk from my mom and new mattress for my birthday. I couldn't be happier.

School is in full swing, or at least that is what they tell me. I honestly feel like I went down a grade, like I am a TA in a class after last year. It is harder than I ever imagined because since I am not being challenged I spend most of my class periods day dreaming, hence me blogging instead of learning about six sigma. I spend most of my nights though studying about this stuff and teaching it to myself at my own pace because the classes go too slow.

I got a job on campus that I love, I am a receptionist. If you ever attended BYU you are laughing right now, it is like being a male nurse. Not a lot of men in my profession. I love it though because I enjoy listening to these girls dish about EVERYTHING.

Life is good. I am loving my classes, even if they bore me but I am dying to go back to work. I just want a real job and to be gaining experience. I will wait my turn and just keep applying and working things out. Last week I had an interview with Lockheed Martin, it was a good confidence boost but also helped me realize I need to work on my stories a little bit more. We'll see what happens. I still am looking forward to interviewing with Savage again. I loved the company and would love to go back to them.

I am going to post a bunch of pictures within a week. Just to update everyone. Just stay with me.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Last Post

Today is probably the last post for a while. I just don't have anything exciting to write about anymore. Life is good. I had a safe and happy summer. I flew home today and made it safe and sound. I really enjoyed my time with Savage.

Tonight was amazing. I came home and I went and visited my brother and his wife. Both of them served their missions in Canada and so both were excited and wanted to talk about my trip. I dropped off some delicious candy bars and then we chatted. My sister in law said, well when is your next trip? I said never. This summer was great but there is nothing like being home with my family and friends. Next week I move back to Orem, the week after that I go on my annual elk hunt. I love it.

Thanks for everyone reading. I hope you all have a safe and happy rest of the summer also.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Last Audit

Today was pretty funny, halfway through my audit I realized I was doing my last one. I can't believe this job is practically over. It seems like just yesterday I was in Price, visiting with my cousin and making ladies cry. I can't believe it has gone like this. I had some idea of putting of stats, of how many nights I spent in hotels or how many flights I went on. Needless to say I got a free flight to any where in the US and anywhere from one to three free nights at a Hilton depending on the city and how nice a room I want. Yea I got hooked up.

This morning I woke up and I drove to Point Tupper, it is on the water. So beautiful. I had a good time auditing this operation everyone in Canada is so nice. I hda a good day today complete with fish, seafood, and birthday cake.

Canada is a wonderful place, but I can't express how happy I am to go home tomorrow and stay home. Today is a huge milestone for me, I set a goal to have a successful summer and tonight it all came together. I thought back over the summer and everything I did and have never been more grateful than I was tonight.

I have been thinkink pretty deep lately. One thing that has been on my mind is control over my life and the balance. I know that I can't completely control my life, God is in control and no matter what I do it is really up to Him.

I love baseball. I love the Yankees. I was listening to some commentators on tv the other night. They were talking about pitchers, now if a pitcher is good he can throw one pitch. If they can't hit your fastball then you don't need anymore pitches. Exhibit Joba Chamberlain 2007. Now the trick to throwing a good fastball is to grip the ball loosely. The harder you grip the ball the slower it goes, that is actually how you throw a change up. Most people don't know that you only touch a fastball with the tips of your fingers. Somestimes pitchers are "over-gripping" and they lose velocity, they are self destructing.

This came to me today as I was driving. I am like the tired pitcher, wanting to control the game and blow my pitch by people. I try too hard to throw my pitch and I end up just hurting myself and my team. Sometimes we just need to let go and realize we can't control things anymore. I realized today that I have no control over the situations that come my way, I can control what happens when they get to me but the ones that come or don't come my way I can't control those.

Life is good if we live in a such a way as to make it so.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


I don't think I titled last nights post, as you can tell it is a little scattered. Let us see if we can't remedy that.

So I had an amazing afternoon today. I got done in the office and asked them to recommend a place, I had a friend recommend a carnegie deli type place but after the last time I had smoked meats I don't think I will ever be the same. Imagine me and three women in a conference room one goes I know exactly where to go...La Fornetta....the other two go awww, like a puppy dog just came out of box with a pink ribbon on it and it had I love you in spots on its side. They all start jibbering in french and I am look okay, they tell me it is the nice little italian place on the river. So amazing. I went down and sat outside on a beautiful day and had some pretty good food. I love the change of personality people have when they realize I am American and I don't speak french. So my waiter ignored me which was nice because I got to really soak up the scenery in my corner of the patio. I loved it.

Today I got pretty sentimental and made up for not getting too deep last night. Just bear with me, unless you are one of my brothers then this post is over.

I was thinking about why this trip has been so hard for me. There isn't anything significant about it, I don't mind traveling, I haven't had any bad experiences, the french doesn't truly bother me.... I thought about it today while I was eating and then when I stopped and visited the Montreal temple on the way out of town. I have come to the conclusion it is my friends, I am missing them.

Have you ever been so sure of something only to find out the moment after you do it you were completely wrong? I have, it is like the story of my life. I try to hard to make things right and fix stuff when sometimes I just need to realize just becauce it isn't working how I want it to doesn't mean it is broken. I am not any good at fixing things anyways, exhibit A my motorcycle. I bought it running in April only to take a simple loose screw and turn it into 4 months of not running. But I tried my dangest to fix it.

I asked the ladies how early I should get to the airport, they say at least 3 hours. I was like wow that much foot traffic, ohh yea all the flights out of Montreal are in the evening. Okay...I will go that early. Needless to say I had no line in security, which btw Canada you aren't a threat to anyone no one wants to hijack your planes, stopped acting like you are a big deal and having more security than the White House; anyways back to the airport. I get through security and am able to get on an earlier flight to Halifax. I guess when it doesn't really matter I can get to where I am going just fine.

Good night.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Today was a good day. I woke up and went to location one of two today. I got there and it was funny because everyone was speaking french but me. It makes me feel really uncomfortable. Everyone starts out in French then when I speak English they seem so put out and upset like it some trial for them to speak English without an accent. I respect rules, even if I wasn't an auditor I still run by rules. A professor at Harvard Business School when he was teaching a class on Humility, said it is a lot harder to be obedient 98% of the time than 100%. I agree with that. Well so I bring up a rule that has been broken all through the company and she just scoffs at it. Then when her manager comes in, luckily he doesn't speak french so I could understand, she says guess what stupid thing they want us to do now as I am standing right next to her. One form of audit evidence is talking with the workers. Sometimes I rely on that pretty heavily to gauge how they do their work and their respect level and see if they openly admit to doing something they aren't suppose to do but don't know it. When I hear someone say stuff like that, it sends off a red flag. I wish I could have given her a 0. I was looking for a good enough reason. She was nice, but I hated giving her a score that I feel she didn't deserve.

I guess that is where my problems in life start, judging people too harshly. This lady is really nice and probably very good at her job. I just hated the way she scoffed at mine.

I then went to location two of two, a complete turn around. I go in and bring up the exact same thing to the coordinator, she goes oh my goodness well I'll get right on an email out to the managers. Should I tell them if they don't get it to not bother turning in receipts we won't reimburse them? I was like well that is up to you, in my mind I am thinking I am going to hate giving this lady a bad score.

I don't know what else to right, usually I have some insight or something deeper than people's reactions to my work. Today was just another high profile day in my auditing life. Life is good though. Tomorrow I get out of a french dominated city and move to Nova Scotia. It should be nice this time of year, and considering I have 6 hours of driving I should see the whole island.

Monday, August 9, 2010


So I started my last trip with a bang this morning. I got up and got to the airport and I went to check-in at the kiosk hoping to get an exit row seat. None were available. Well when I went to go check-in the line was at the end of the maze, pretty long but nothing I couldn't get through. Well so as I am checking in since I was going internationally I had to scan my passport. Well the kiosk was having issues reading my passport so it took me a while to get my boarding passes. Well I turn around and what has happened. The line is all the way to the short term parking. Anyone who has flown out of Salt Lake knows this is unheard of. I have been spoiled with the longest I had to wait was twenty minutes once. So I am like are you kidding me? I start in line, get about 5 spots up and I hear the TSA lady on the radio, "yea there isn't a line over at the international terminal". So I book it over there. Ahhh, to be in security for only 5 minutes.

The flights went by so fast. I packed only religious readings and after a while like my Dad says you can ruin a day with too much religion. I just think my mind was weary from the deep thinking. And there was a lot of it. They were mostly self help topics, I am always trying to improve and so they had a lot to do with that so it wasn't too bad.

I land in Montreal. Nothing is in English, no one is speaking English. I am dying. I wander around with a bunch of people until I finally get to the rental car place. The lady goes uhhh let me call and get you a car up right away. I say alright. She is like we are out let me go borrow one from Avis. I say okay. She goes uhhh it will be a bit they are running low also. Just then some guy brings back a sweet new ride. Can I get an upgrade, upgrade....for free? Yes please! So I am in a new Sonata. I love my job.

It is interesting to think that this is my last trip. I have three more flights, I bet one gets messed up for sure, and a couple more hotel nights and then this job is done. This summer has gone by way too fast.

I have been thinking a lot about a career and I know earlier I said I was dedicating myself to a career in public accounting. I think I need to change that. I realized this last week that I enjoy finding problems, but I hate handing them off to someone else to fix. I want to fix things. I always try and fix everything around me, sometimes I am really good and sometimes I am really bad but I still love fixing things. I love my job because I find out problems, inefficiences that put the company in a position to be hurt. I love finding them, I hate handing them over to someone and just saying yea sorry I found this problem do something about it. I want the job that finds and solves, or at the very least solves. I want to be on the forefront of day to day decisions and operations. I think me not getting in the Masters program at BYU was sign that the Lord knew I would want this also and protected me from going down a career path I might regret.

So here it is to changing again. The only good thing about this is that no matter what, I know I will be successful. As a Phillips I am blessed with an innate drive, that results in knowing that whatever comes across my path I will be able to beat. I will struggle, but there is nothing in this world that can stop me. I look forward to the job hunt, and in any other trial out there foolish enough to get in my way.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Cali, Cali, Cali

So I am sorry to all my faithful readers for not updating this week. I have been staying in this posh resort and the only place they have free internet is the lobby. Needless to say I don't do well with men wearing capris, hearing french, or large groups of loud people consuming alcohol.

This week has been sweet. I came down a day early and spent Monday on the beach with some friends. It was awesome, the first time I ever went to the beach and swam in the ocean. It was cold but well worth it. I was even taught how to hunt sand crabs. It was a lot of fun. I stayed that night in Irvine, thanks Matt, at about 5 AM I woke up with the second worst tooth ache I have ever had. The number one was on my mission when I got an infection and I had to get my tooth pulled. I was ready to go get on a plane that morning and have been ready ever since. If they didn't want $300 to change my flight I would have hurried this trip right up and got home. So I have been living on IBprofen all week it has helped and I am doing alot better since then.

So I have been working down here this week and it has been fun. There has been a lot on my mind. A lot about my life, career, and future. I don't really know what I am going to do in the fall, where I am going to live or where I am going to work. It is kind of frustrating because I hate leaving things to the last second. I really want to get it taken care of in the next couple of weeks before work ends so I can go and enjoy my hunts.

So that has been on my mind. A LOT.

This week my hotel has been on the beach, to the East of our hotel are the Los Angeles docks in Long Beach. They load the big containers like on Gone in 60 Seconds. It is really cool to see the boats moving in and out and being loaded and unloaded. I love it here, and for some reason when I look at these machines I am inspired. I doubt when they built the docks down here they imagined such massive machines being used. I am a capitalist, and to me these machines represent hard work, a sharp mind, and a desire to become a more effective business.

I read Atlas Shrugged, (if you haven't I would recommend it, it is very applicable to our current economic and political climate) and in it the protagonists are hated by everyone in society for being driven by a profit. Yet they aren't driven so much by a profit as they are by the desire to create something better. Profits come because they used everything they have to make something better instead of just being content with mediocrity. Capitalism at its finest is a pursuit of something better. It isn't as much about the profits as it is about creating something better, more efficient, that makes people's life easier.

One closing thought. When I was on my mission there was a missionary who was half Italian and half Brazilian. Obviously we made fun of him for being so ignorant and stuck up. He had a unique accent also and there was a talk in General Conference by a Brazilian he knew and he use to always quote it. I remember it more for the accent than anything but I am glad I remember it. The quote is, "Life is good, if we live in such a way as to make it so."

Good night Cali I can't wait to go home tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Today I drove 6+ hours. I loved it other than the fact there was a stretch there were there wasn't any radio stations. That was abou tthe extent of my day. I am staying in a suite tonight because there weren't any other hotel rooms in all of LA. Nice.

Monday, July 19, 2010


Today was a very spiritual day. I visited the LDS temple in Baton Rouge and Cabelas in Gonzales Louisiana. Like I said very spiritual day. So I woke up this morning and drove two hours North to Baton Rouge. I checked out of that rip off hole and just figured I would ask the people in the office where I could stay. People hear audit and they just tense up, I kinda hate this because while it is a big deal and I do take it very serious I am a very laid back person. This is especially bad when it is your first one. Today's victim had been with the company since April 1. Which is funny because I audit Oct 1 - Mar 31. So yea not only is she new but she is getting judged on something she didn't even know was going on.

Needless to say she was a bundle of nerves.

I don't know what really happened but she went home early, her audit turned out fine.

I met two great managers. One was originally from Coleville Utah and the other from El Dorado Kansas. They both talked about how Savage has a motto of giving their employees experiences they can't get anywhere else. So they tend to move them a lot and move them fast. They both talked about how they ended up in Baton Rouge after visiting it on a "check this operation out" visit and then three weeks later they sold their old house and bought a new one. I don't know if I could do that. I know I couldn't, especially not to my kids. My dad always sacrificed so we didn't have to move. Growing up was hard enough, let alone if we had to move to a new school.

Life is good. Sorry still no pictures. I look the same that is all that matters ;)

Sunday, July 18, 2010


Today was the first day in 6 years that I was on the clock on a Sunday, and the second time in my life that I was (excluding the paper route). It ws different and I miss my family. So last Friday I was suppose to get in at 2 pm to Salt Lake and I was really looking forward to a Friday night with friends. Delta had bigger plans, flights got delayed, I got bumped, computers got hacked, and yea I landed at my usual hour of 9 PM. It was a rough day in Detroit for me. So then when I had to leave Sunday afternoon it was double trouble. I get in late and leave early this weekend went by way too fast. I am currently in Downtown New Orleans. I don't like it. I had to pay $30 a day for my car to get parked. I am suppose to spend Mon - Thurs here but tomorrow I am checking out and going some place where I can park my own car for free.

Today was a special day for me. Three and a half years ago my uncle Gordy died while I was living in Connecticut serving a mission. I couldn't make it home for the funeral. Needless to say every memorial day I say I want to go to to his grave but I have yet to make it. I think it is because I truly feel his presence with me on a regular basis. I struggled with his death for the rest of my mission. I remember going to the temple in Boston 4 months later and just having the hardest time thinking about him and that I never got to say goodbye.

Fast forward two years, I am living in Provo it is winter and one day in church our leaders challenge us to do our family history. Now for Latter-day Saints this is a huge deal because I believe, as does the rest of our church, that we have to take our ancestors name's to the temple so they can be saved by Jesus Christ. We take their names and in proxy are baptized and other things similar to that, since they didn't have the opportunity to do this while they were alive. In LDS culture this is usually something for old people to do. You hear often, "oh my grandma has been retired for 20 years she has us done back to Noah." or other equally lazy statements. So I took the challenge and said I am going to find a name that needs their temple work done. So I started to search and like most people whose family comes from pioneers it was hard to find anyone. I was exploring back to the 1700's and found a name on my Dad's side. It was neat to think of this person and their life.

Now I will tie these together. As I explored I came across my Uncle's line, he has a different dad than my dad and so whoever worked on my dad's side didn't do my uncle's. I looked and it only went back 3 generations. It only had my uncle's grandpa up, there were quite a few names of Gordy's uncles and aunt that needed work done also. So I went, since then my mind has been drawn to this family. This morning it came back to me. I was getting ready for church and realized I needed to do more in this department. So i am rededicating myself to this cause.

I love the gospel. It gives life purpose. This morning I was texting a friend at 9ish to 10ish and I just said how crazy is it that we are up right now getting ready for church? Instead of just a day off? So crazy and I am so grateful to be here on this earth with such a wonderful family by my side.

This post was super personal but let's be honest, as much as I hope people I don't know read this, most people I do know don't so I got nothing to worry about.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Today was great. I was really trying to focus on being more positive and it just made today awesome. Do you ever have those days that are just normal in every sense but you just end them on such a high? I had one of those today. Nothing too spectacular, 4 hours of work, 4 hours of driving, a nap and a visit to the spring home of 27 time world champion New York Yankees. I loved it. Today was awesome for no specific reason. I love traveling, it is fun and I enjoy the different people all around me. Sometimes I see people and I just want to talk to them and get their life story, how they got to where they are in life, lessons they learned. And so on. I love people, when I was in high school I would ride Trax a lot. I would love talking to the people on Trax. It was funny because I didn't really know how to talk to people, I still don't but I am getting better.

Life is good.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

California & Florida not for the faint of heart

So this week was very odd, usually I visit one location and am within a few hours of it the whole week. Not so much this week. I was emailing a coordinator trying to figure something out and she wasn't responding. Needless to say she is having some serious health problems and we don't know when she will be back. So I had to go down and meet with her replacement this week because the week I had scheduled the replacement was out of town. So yesterday I flew into LAX.

I got there and worked, her replacement is the lead coordinator and just filling in for the time being. One of the nicest ladies I have ever met. I usually get intimidated talking with adults especially one and one about myself and the conversation usually goes stale after about 20 minutes. She though was so nice and we talked about a lot of different things, we even went out to lunch and talked the whole time her and I. The more I work for Savage the more I wonder how the heck they found all these wonderful people. At all of the companies I have worked at there have been a few people who I have had to try to even have a working relationship with. I don't think it is me, because I can get along for at least 30 minutes with anyone. Savage just has rounded up some of the best of the best and it is a great working with such wonderful people.

So I finished up there at around 3 in the afternoon and wanted to do something other than just go to my hotel and sleep. I went to the LA temple. I was picturing the Oakland so it was funny when I got there I was kind of disappointed. That didn't last long, I got out of my car went for a walk around the temple and just relaxed. It was a nice way to unwind. So then I drove to my hotel, in San Pedro.

Savage has corporate rates with quite a few hotels. The one in Southern California is a Double Tree, and right on the water. You can tell the deals they work at some places are for more than just business. Most of the time I stay in very businessy hotels, not this one. (the reason I didn't blog last night is because they only have internet in the lobby to encourage eating at the restraunt and bar) It was amazing right on the bay, about 1000 sailboats anchored and just a great place.

I woke up at 3:30 and got to LAX at 4 and flew to ATL. It took 4 hours, 3 of which I slept. I then flew to Jacksonville. Which is where I am at today. So that is the physical recap of my journey.

The past two days I have been thinking a lot about my life and the path I am on. In everything, my personal life and my career choice. I realized tonight I can sit and worry and try and figure out about my life and make as many plans as I want, but like every plan I have made to date I have to be ready for it to be changed. Take Sunday for example. I was asked to speak on church and planned a good talk when during the opening song I felt I should take the talk in another direction. This is hard for me to deal with. I love to plan, I like to have all my ducks in a row for as far out as I can see. Sometimes I need to just relax and realize I have made it this far with plenty of help from people all around me, I will be able to make it a little farther.

Life is good. Sorry no pictures, I have them on my phone but I am tired of uploading pictures on here it is too hard. I just like writing.

PS - one thought: 2010 Wild Cow Milking Repeat.....nuff said

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


So today I worked in Galveston. For those of you who don't know Galveston is right near the beach. It actually boasts the best beach in Texas. So I worked down here at one of the docks. They load sulphur onto the boats. So it smelt like burnt up fireworks the whole day.

It is funny, my job requires me to look for mistakes. So when I find a mistake it means I am doing my job and it is something I take pride in. Which is kind of backwards, I know I am doing my job when I find people making mistakes...I thought about it more today. Savage is trusting me to correct thier employees. The people I meet aren't young by any means, I think the youngest coordinator was 29 and the youngest manager was around 40. These are people who aren't new to their jobs either. That put a little pressure on me and renewed my committment to do my best. I am the type of person that responds to added pressure. The more pressure I feel the better job I do.

So after I got done working I went to my hotel, I kept getting closer and closer to the beach. When I pick hotels I basically just throw a dart at a Hampton Inn board. As long as it is in the same town I am fine. Little did I realize I would be at one on the boardwalk across from the ocean. It is really nice, other than the fact a tropical storm/hurricane is suppose to hit land tomorrow or Friday. So yea nice waves, lots of wind, and cloud bursts here and there.

Life is good, tomorrow hopefully will work out with me getting to Corpus Christi and finishing up all my work here. I love my job.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Houston Part II

So it has been forever since I posted because I haven't been on the road since the 22nd of June. Crazy! I know right? Anyways, so the past two weeks I haven't been just sitting around I have been working in Utah and it was nice being home for so long. Made me forget what it was like to travel. Anyways, this morning I came back to Houston. I was suppose to be working in Galveston today but last week I got two surprises that both involved me returning to the Houston office. It was nice and is nice to be back in Houston, other than the fact there is a tropical storm blowing in this weekend. Let's hope I can make it back in time for Saturday night because I have to defend my title. That is right I am doing wild cow milking again. Last year was such a success my team got together for another go (lets not talk about our little adventure to Idaho.) We are expecting a minimum eight-peat. It should be spectacular, considering only my immediate family and Gini read this..I don't think I need to give too many details.

Anyways this morning I flew to Houston, on the plane sitting directly behind me was none other than Rulon Gardner, the same Rulon Gardner who won Olympic gold in Greco-Roman wrestling, the same Rulon Gardner who got lost in Wyoming and walked out losing most of his toes to frostbite, and the same Rulon Gardner that opened a gym in Logan. He was super friendly and talking to anyone he could. I was sitting in front of him and listening to him talk to the guy next to him. Much to my surprise the guy next to him had no idea who Rulon Gardner was. It was funny, because how do you modestly say you won Gold in the Olympics in a sport dominated by Russians, basically how do you say you are the Rocky of wrestling. He was so nice.

Life is good, if there is one thing I am excited about being back in Houston is the food. There is one place I have been craving since I left and I plan on hitting it up tonight for dinner. Wish me luck. Love my job, it is getting easier. It is like I only see in nerd now, I look at papers and I just am drawn to the thing that I need to audit. I can at least talk to Mallory now about what seeing the world in nerd is like.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


One of the things that I was really excited about when I got this job with Savage was the type of people I would be working with. I am a blue collar kid, I love working with my hands and enjoy the satisfaction that comes from manual labor. When I first got back from my mission I loved driving truck for Codale. I could have done work like that for the rest of my life. I loved helping people also. All of these things have carried over with me to Savage.

This job has been a struggle with that. I don’t do anything physical, and most people think I am just a pencil pusher. Today I was driving from one office to the other and I was thinking about how much I missed working with my brother Greg. He has a small piece of land and I loved building on it, bucking hay, feeding animals, and any other small projects we undertook. I go into offices where everyone is working, all the managers are working managers, most of the people I interact with on a daily basis are high school graduates. I love the people I work with. I come to work in slacks, and a dress shirt. So just seeing me walk up everyone can tell I don’t belong, people start whispering and most won’t say hello to me.

I share this because it goes along well with my story for the day. I am driving two and a half hours to my next office. I have been drinking water bottles all morning long and I stop for lunch. First thing I do is go to the bathroom. Then I eat and drink some more water, grab two Gatorades from a gas station, and get back on the road. I should have went to the restroom one more time but I didn’t think about it. So about 5 minutes back on the road I am ready to go again. Except now I am in farmland Kansas. I am getting ready to just pull over when I see some grain silos. I know there is a gas station right by it so I head there. I will top my tank off and use the restroom.

I am at like ¾ tank and so I am just filling up because I feel guilty using the bathroom without giving them any business. So I start the gas and start to realize I really need to go. So I just walk away and go inside. I come out and there is about 6 gallons of gas on the ground underneath my car….Oh shoot….I go out there and there is some old timer filling up his feed truck and he takes one look at me and just shakes his head.

I go inside get a clerk, there was some farmer there having lunch and he came out and helped me. Luckily it was hot today so it just evaporated pretty quickly. I kept trying to help and they were all pretty quick to say oh no we got it. They were all really friendly and just said it would be alright if I just drove off. I was like uhh okay. I am so embarrassed.

Then it hits me, in my mind I fit in to this place but all these people see is some kid in a new car, out of state plates, slacks, and a long sleeve dress shirt. I look like such a city slicker. I enjoyed the strong smell of gas for the next hour.

This is a long post but bear with me for one more point. I was reading a devotional by a BYU professor about our calling in life. He is disproving some of the common misconceptions about our “calling” in life. He was talking about how one of the ideas is that, “When I find my calling, work will be bliss.” Spilling gas is hardly something to get upset about but the earlier topic of working with my hands and being a pencil pusher is what I direct the next though process to.

I know being an accountant is my calling. As crazy as it sounds it is where I am meant to be. This is kind of hard to swallow, because I can’t imagine my life as a suit. Then the speaker said this, “We can’t expect deep meaningfulness from our calling unless we are willing to assume its burdens as well.”

I know being in a suit and tie behind a desk is such a burden. I guess this is me committing to a life time of hard work as an accountant. Chris Ledoux said it best –

Well I know some day farther down the road

I'll come to the edge of the great unknown

There'll stand a black horse riderless

And I wonder if I'm ready for this

So I'll saddle him up and he'll switch his tail

And I'll tip my hat and bid fairwell

And lift my song into the air

That I learned at that dusty fair

"Sit tall in the saddle, Hold your head up high

Keep your eyes fixed where the trail meets the sky

And live like you ain't afraid to die

And don't be scared, just enjoy your ride"

Now don't be scared, just enjoy your ride

Monday, June 21, 2010

Long time

So it has been a really long time since I poster. Which is good news. That means I have been in Utah for a while. It is nice and this morning when I caught my flight it felt like an eternity since I last flew, or 5 days, pretty close right?

So today I am in a town called El Dorado, Kansas. Not the city of gold but the accent on the a. They will let you know if you don't pronounce it right. I took off this morning and enjoyed my flights. I got to Denver and was enjoying life. Things were going great, so I am like the fifth person on the plane. I begin to read as everyone is loading and I just get super tired. I decide to take a nap and I just fall asleep in my chair immediately. When I sleep on planes it is like I am not full asleep and so time goes by in regular time. So the plane starts to taxi and I remember it taking off then I remember I am going to wake up and get my drink. So I get up and enjoy the rest of the flight. When I woke up I was like why does my neck hurt so bad and why am I so groggy? The plan lands and I am standing at baggage claim waiting for my luggage. Everyone from my flight is standing around and one guys calls his ride. This is the conversation

Guy: Hey so I just got in sorry about that....Yea I don't know what happened we just got all boarded and sat on the plane on the runway for like 45 minutes....

At this point I am like what is going on, check my watch sure enough we are an hour late. I have never been so grateful for a nap. Not only did I get an hour nap that I got paid for, but I dodged the frustration of sitting in a cramped plane for an hour on the runway. Life is good. I have never been more grateful for a nap.

So after an epic nap, two good flights and against my GPS' best effort I am safe and sound in El Dorado. This week is going to be a good week.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Safety Net

Growing up with 3 older brothers who loved to punish me anytime I said or did something out of the ordinary, I grew up really tough. I learned fast how to not show emotion, showing emotions was like dropping blood in shark infested waters. A feeding frenzy of verbal and physical assaults would follow almost immediately any emotional display. Slowly I developed a very thick skin and short fuse. But hey if it had been any other way I would not have half the funny stories I am saving to roast my brothers with at some huge celebration. Like when Mike wins the Nobel Peace Prize for medicine, the real one not the one they give to presidents, or when Brian invents a new laser beam. Yea that will be a good day.

My thick skin has been great for me, when something bad happens I let it bounce off of my thick skin and then I just forget about it. Great way to deal with any problem...not. I've learned that just because the problem is bouncing away from me right now doesn't mean it won't come back. Mostly I would bounce girl problems off me and come back to them never. So last summer I got dumped and said I am handling this differently. The past year has been good and I have been facing problems but every now and then I realize that I still have that shell up.

I love being tough, that is the key to any good thick shell. No weakness, no mercy, no pain. Sometimes I just start acting tough and I don't realize that my shell is "protecting" me. Tonight it was hard not to have a tough guy image driving this:

Thanks work. I love my job. A lot just came crashing down on me today, maybe the fact I don't really know what I will be doing in the fall? I have no idea. I was thinking about it and was like ohh crap I have to go back to school... yea that isn't ever a good realization. Nor is realizing you don't have any plan when you get back there really for classes, scheduling, work, or living arrangements. Should be an interesting first week of school.

Funny story today though. So I eat every where by myself. I always feel bad taking a table because I waste a couple extra seats but I feel really uncomfortable at the bar because I don't drink and waitresses don't get as big a tip from guys who don't drink so as soon as they see me not ordering alcohol I feel like I put on a sign that says don't serve me well today. Yet I hate waiting and so I sit at the bar everywhere I go to eat. Tonight I walk in to Ruby Tuesdays. I look at the bar and see there are about 5 other guys there with about 15 empty seats. Baseball game is on, so that is a deal sealer. I sit down and order the most expensive non-alcoholic drink. Waitress says okay, it is kinda slow so she gets right to my drink. I look down and look up just to see her measuring out a shot from a glass bottle full of clear liquid. SHOOT! I run my order through my head and watch her for a bit to see if she is making mine or someone else's. I realize it is and say

Me: Is that my drink?

Bartender: Yea...

Me: oh, well that is fine I will pay for just dump it out.

Bartender: K. Looks at me the same way my little brother looks at a razor on Sunday morning.

Me: I don't drink alochol sorry I didn't realize I ordered one with alcohol

Bartender: I just put sugar water in it...

Me: oh.

By now the other six guys at the bar have joined our conversation and I realize then that I practically yelled I don't drink. That moment helped the tough guy shell come down. A whole lot.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Where were you when the Blackhawks won?

I didn't blog yesterday, sorry to all my faithful fans. I will catch ya up. I woke up yesterday at 6 am, wierd because it was 4 am and I didn't have any problem getting ready. So I went to work and finished up my audit in Grand Rapids. It was fun, the boss was gone so it was me and the coordinator he told me alot of funny facts about Grand Rapids. He is originally from England and is super nice. The office is in a train yard with a bunch of warehouse all around it. He showed me this one, (that I took a picture of but I can't upload pictures right now...,) that is mafia I guess. He showed me the helicopter landing pad and says every now and then this white helicopter with like a gold shark on the side of it lands there and a bunch of suits get out and go inside for a couple hours then come back out and fly off. Back when the train yard was really busy people would just disappear and end up a few cities away in some box car dead. Funny.

My plan was to hurry down to Indiana and audit the junk out of them between Weds and Thurs and catch an early flight out on Friday. Well one of the operations in had a bunch of stuff going on so that threw a wrench in my plan. So I decided to take my time and take the scenic route along Lake Michigan and see some of the small towns. I stopped for lunch and got a delicious waffle is some backwoods town. It was a good trip. I even saw my first white tail deer. It was sad, it looked like a grey hound. I always heard they were the size of dogs but I never believed it until then.

So I get to Indiana, I realize they are on central time when I go to check into my hotel at noon or I thought 1 pm. By now I am ready to just crash. I want to just crawl in any bed and goto sleep so I take whatever room they got and I get some sleep. I slept for about 2 hours. Then I woke up and went out to dinner. Then I came back and fell asleep again for about 5 hours. I woke up at about 11, and just hung out til about 3 AM then I went back to sleep and got up this morning at 6:30. I guess some time last night the Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup. It has been huge out here. Chicago hasn't been a winner since Jordan left. I have heard the announcers call of when they scored the winning goal about 40 times today on the radio. Every DJ and every person is bringing it up. One of the coordinators asked me today if I watched the game and I didn't have the heart to tell her I was sleeping.

So I go to work today, and I tear the audit up. I am moving great and so excited. Like I have talked about, the operations I am auditing right now are really simple because they are hyrbid operations. I was expecting tomorrow to be a hybrid. So I was like wake up, hit up the operation, goto the airport and catch a midday flight out of Chi town. Someone tells me today they aren't hybrid. They are full on Savage terminals. I was like dangit. So I ran by and grabbed the work and have been chewing on it in my hotel room.

When I was grabbing the information on the last office I was talking to the coordinator and I asked her what time she was showing up. She said that they usually get started at 6:45 but because of the parade for the blackhawks tomorrow they are starting at 4 so they can get everything loaded and make it to the parade. Then I realized ohh junk I have to fly out of Chicago tomorrow....are you kidding me.

This is getting long and dry. I will post pictures next time.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Grand Rapids and Problem Solving.

So I started this blog for a couple reasons:

1) Because companies are always looking online at prospective hires to get a better understanding of them and I wanted to have a good presence.

2) So my Mom would be able to keep tabs on me without us playing phone tag (I just love her and want her to not worry*)

Today was an epic day. So yesterday ended alright. I went and worked out, got some dinner and then went to bed. Life was good. I slept good and woke up and went to work. Have you ever heard the stand up routine by Chris Rock where he talks about how Martin Luther King Boulevard are always the most dangerous streets in any city? Today I worked on Rosa Parks, it was pretty scary, not to mention it was a train yard...I made it out of Detroit alive though.

The audit today flew. Everything was ready, and everything looked good. I hated to do it and tried not to but I gave out a perfect score. Let's hope I don't get any flack for it, it isn't like it is that big of a deal because the way it is structured. Savage has quite a few controls to test and make sure the big expenditures are done right, most of the problems we run into are in relation to those things. The operations I am visiting are hybrid operations, it isn't a joint venture exactly but pretty dang close. So all the really expensive stuff goes through the other guy. Where the only things that really I look at are expense reports, basically gas receipts for manager vehicles and uniform fees, and a credit card with a $2500 limit. Really simple.

So then I drove across the State of Michigan and stopped at the Grand Rapids office. I worked there and had some good laughs, the manager there was really nice and very funny. He gave me a lot of good background on the hybrid operation and how it works exactly because he has been there through quite a few different similar arrangements. Again today everyone I met with this company, some of the nicest and most cordial people ever.

I got to my hotel and relaxed, caught up on some sleep, got a good work out in and had some good food. I got an email from my travel agent regarding my credit card and what was going on with it, they couldn't figure it out and asked me to call my credit card company and get more information. So I call Chase, girls answers the phone.

me: (very nice tone) I called yesterday about a problem and I need more information so I can fix it
girl: yea I don't know what to tell you that isn't a problem, those charges usually drop off as soon as we cancel them, why would you think that is a problem?
me: because you told me it was.
girl: sorry we did
me: sorry I trusted you guys
me: (thinking) don't lose it on this girl
girl: . . . oh . . . sorry you feel that way
me: thank you have a good day

So after the travel agent spent a good amount of time today trying to fix my problem, it really wasn't a problem. Thanks Chase you just wasted my life.

So since then my mind has been on this situation and what has come out of it. I came up with a really good realization. I hate problems, when they happen I try to fix them as fast as possible so they aren't on my plate anymore. I need to take a step back, let the problem hang over my head for a little bit. Then I need to come up with a solution, I need to not try and fix the whole problem in the first instance. Sometimes I see these big problems and I either freak out and do nothing or I freak out and fix it all. When I do nothing that obviously isnt a good solution but when I try and fix it too fast that just causes more problems. My Mission President said, "slow is fast and fast is slow." I have struggled to apply that ever since I have heard it and it always comes back to bite me in the butt.

Here is too better problem solving.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Detroit aka Don't trust Chase

So I haven't been posting any pictures, sorry but yea nothing picture worthy. Today I flew out to Detroit, now if I hadn't pulled an all nighter last night it would have been a fine day. I just love Provo though and was having so much fun down there I couldn't leave until about 3 AM then I ran some errands, so I just figured I'd sleep on the plane. I got to Detroit, super exhausted and just wanted to take a shower and goto bed. Well my first rental car wasn't having anything to do with me I guess so I had to go back in line and get a different one. Not bad right? Yea it wasn't so then I get to my hotel and my card gets declined and I am like what? Run it again and she does and it goes bad again. I think HUH? I just checked online Friday and I still had $3000 til I reached my limit. This obviously was a problem. So I step outside, mostly for courtesy to the other people around me. I must confess I absolutely hate, hate, hate phone customer service, because when I worked in that industry they said, the customer isn't always right and you need to make them work for whatever they want....I was shocked when they told me that. So everytime I call it seems like they answer phone with something like this, Hello my name is Gwen, I don't really care whats going with you and since you are 5000 miles away from me there is nothing you can do about it.

So back to the story, I call Chase, say whats going on? She says well it looks like there are some charges pending on your card, I say ohh those two charges my travel agent tried to make and you guys declined? Then I called you and told you to take them off and you said they were good? Or were they the other charges for the same amount on the same day? She says ohh its the first. To which I say I am in a rental car with no other means of payment and I need a hotel. What can you do for me, (no kidding) . . . umm mr phillips nothing actually . . . What? She tells me I need to call the merchant who made those charges.

So I hang up and call the travel agent for the company, who today is her first day, the lady who was there when the charges were made just got promoted and left the company on Friday. Yea, perfect. So I explain my situation to the newbie. First thing out of her mouth, call your credit card company those will just fall off....umm no they won't or else they would have sometime in the past month. You gotta do something. She says I don't know what to do I have never heard of this. I say well cancel my trip I'll just come home and when you figure it out I'll come back out. She doesn't like that. I didn't either I just wanted her to realize just how serious it was. So she comes up with the idea to call my boss and put it on his corporate card. We do I am in my room relaxing getting ready to go eat then work out. Needless to say I was way frustrated imagining I was going to sleep in a rental car tonight and not get a shower again.

There is nothing that makes me more upset than bad customer service, I am very old fashioned like that. If someone who makes you money is having a hard time you better dang well do anything you can to make their life a little easier. Chase, doesn't see that way I guess. An accounting company came to BYU once and said they have a team of people who just cruise the internet looking for what people are saying about their company and then contacting them. I hope Chase has the same and they contact me, I would love to see something positive about that company.

Funny though, I am fine now. I am grateful that this doesn't put me over the edge like it use to. I know I may sound super bitter and angry right now but I am not. Life is good, and I am glad it all worked out.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Pain is spelled L-U-B-B-O-C-K

So today is my little brother's graduation. After working yesterday I realized the operations down here aren't that complicated. I originally scheduled a 7:10 PM departure from Lubbock which would give me plenty of time to drive the 2 hours to Earth, work, and then drive the 1.5 hours to Lubbock. After thinking about it I really wanted to be home for a couple of reasons. So this morning I got up at 4 AM, got ready and left the hotel at 5. I arrive in Earth at 7 and everyone was shocked, I guess the coordinator doesnt come in until 8. So they called her and said get here before this hard A fails us. I would have too. But she came in with wet hair and I had sympathy on her. So I audit and it goes well. I get done and I drive to Lubbock. I get here at about noon.

On the way I called because there were three other flights to Dallas that I wanted to get on. One lady said it would be 694 dollars to get on one flight but she said it wouldn't be anything if I just went to the gate. I don't think she realized I am not a freqeunt flyer with American. So I get to the airport expecting to get on Standby and catch one of these three flights. Only to be told they don't have standby for regular customers anymore. So for the past 6 hours I have sat in this airport, watching three flights leave. In thirty minutes I will board my five hour flight to go home.

If I had known that I would have just piddled around Lubbock in my rental car. Needless to say I am going to be one grumpy passenger today. Did I also mention I am coming down with a cold and my head is killing? Lord beer me strength.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Great Day

Today was a good day, nothing too extraordinary. I woke up and went to work, it went fine and then I finished up and traveled around Amarillo killing time. I met some great people at Savage. I have yet to meet someone I didn't absolutely love and just enjoy chatting with, everyone is really smart and friendly. This is where I worked today.
This is the power plant we supply the coal for.
Texas is the only state that was added to the union by a treaty. They reserved the right to fly their flags the same height as the US flag. The thing is all the flag poles have funny angles on them that make them look like they are a little taller. Or they actually are....

This little feller was in the bathroom waiting to welcome me to Texas.

Texas is great, after work I went to the gift shop at the AQHA museum and hall of fame. I would have gone in but I realized I didn't know enough about horses for it to really make a difference in my life. I loved the gift shop though. They had a tiny little arena off to the side so I think they have little shows there. I went to a nice burger joint for dinner, it was like a texas five guys. I love not having to buy my own food...I would have gone to the Big Texan but everyone in the office said if I didn't want to die I shouldn't eat there. I guess their food actually is really terrible. They say the only reason it is still in business is because it is such a novelty.

I am getting a cold. I have a headache and my nose and throat are burning. I will just leave it at this and goto bed. Things are great.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Amarillo by morning ... maybe early evening....

So this morning I left on another adventure. It started well with a quick trip to Ghetto mall that is going through a major face lift right now. They are even getting an In-N-Out, and WVCPD setup a shop in the mall complete with three segways. Despite this incredible effort, I will never allow a loved one to go there without someone packing. If it hadn't been a huge emergency and I wasn't on the way to the airport I would have never set foot in there. Moral of the story: Stay away from Ghetto Mall.

So I was going to check in at home and I didn't have a seat assignment on the flight from Dallas to Amarillo. No biggie half my flights don't have seat assignments but I guess American won't let you check in online. In big bold letters it said please proceed to the nearest American Airlines ticket counter for ticket information. I was like what??? So I goto the airport early expecting a hassle from them. Like I got there two hours (like TSA recommends) early only to be directed to a kiosk where I enter the same information and get my boarding pass. Not to mention SLC airport security lines are actually efficient and so it took me 10 minutes. So I get on the other side of security with 2 hours to kill basically....um....yea.

So the flight to Dalls is uneventful, there were some missionaries on the flight on their way to South America. So I slept like a baby knowing there is now way the plane is crashing. I get to the gate in Dallas and get my seat. Get in the plane, it was pretty small and I kept hitting my head in the aisle. I sit down and we taxi around for 30 minutes. Finally the captain says there are bad thunderstorms so we are trying to find a path around it. We take off, I don't think they found the path around the storms...judging by the turbulence that rocked me to sleep. I just remember praying that I could fall asleep and live through the ride. I have alot of practice with prayers like that after being on road trips with Brain.

I finally land in Amarillo, get my car and a nice upgrade for free since they were out of intermediate cars. My hotel is right by a couple sweet places.
This is where I had dinner at, cute little place too much meat and not enough flavor though.
As I drove down the freeway to the hotel I saw a sign for a building I had to stop at for my brother and nephew. The AQHA international headquarters are located in Amarillo, a block from my hotel this sign was outside. There is a museum that I will try and visit tomorrow after work.

This is a monument dedicated to the first ever registered quarter horse.

Amarillo is fun. I just miss home already. This summer has just begun though that's the rough part.

Friday, May 28, 2010


Hill Cumorah monument
Whitmer farm home

Hearth in Whimer family home

This is the Chapel and visitor's center at the Whitmer farm

Letters from EB Grandin's printing press

This isn't the exact one but the same make and model of press The Book of Mormon was printed on

These are the grain bins in the threshing barn

A real cooperstown bible in the Smith family frame home

This is the table in the Smith Family kitchen

Another shot of the Smith Family kitchen

Smith frame home parlor

This is an orignal doorknob in the Smith home

Smith family frame home, Alvin started construction but died during the process. The house is 85% original, people lived in it up until the church bought it. You could see the spot where Alvin stopped working on it and someone else started.

That is the Palmyra temple in the background, it is the only temple with clear windows. They face towards the sacred grove.

Smith family log home

This hearth in the Smith family log home

Threshing barn

Coopers shop

These fences were everywhere and pretty neat considering they were loose standing. The guide said they are their version of panels. Imagine moving these Greg.

Sacred Grove, it is a pathway of trails that just meander through the woods I kept looking for an end...

Palmyra Temple

Palmyra Temple

View from Hill Cumorah

Upstate New York countryside