Sunday, December 31, 2006

2006 - Year in Review

The year is almost over. For the Squire family it has been a good one. Here is a little bit of our year in review.

We started the year like any other since we had been married. Alison was working at WECC and I was working for Dickman Enterprises doing the leather protection for RC Willey. The biggest difference this year was that Alison was pregnant. I started my spring semester at school and ended up doing ok.

From what I recall, February wasn't a bad month. I'm sure that Alison and I had an incredible Valentine's Day. We were also able to spend a weekend with the extended Squire family in St. George over President's Day.

March was good because of Spring Break and the NCAAs. Alison and I went to the first and second rounds at the Huntsman Center here in Salt Lake City. She won the family tournament pools for both families but I was a close second. I also quit working for Dickman Enterprises and started working for Pacificorp.

April and May
In April I went to an IEEE conference in Boise, ID. While there I also took a tour of Micron's Boise headquarters. It's a huge facility. May found the end of finals week and I began working full-time at Pacificorp.

June, July and August
The summer was a good one. I worked most of the summer full-time and we were able to go waterskiing a couple of times. Ada Elizabeth Squire was born on July 22 at 12:55 AM. She has been a joy ever since. August found us trying to learn how to be parents.

September, October, November and December
I'm cruising now. Fall found me in school again, working part time. Alison quit her job at WECC and has been staying home with Ada full-time. The holiday season was a good one for the Squires.

Doesn't that just sound like it was a wonderful year? Hopefully this next one is just as good!

Friday, December 29, 2006

There's a New Girl in Town!

Now even Alison has caught the bug. She's started a blog of her own. You can see it at If she asks where you heard about it, don't tell her I told you. I'm excited to see what kind of juicy info I get from Al's Audibles. She better not share any of my secrets though...

My Book Review Blog!

I'm loving this blogging dealio so much that I've gone and done it again. I've decided to set up a place where I can write about the books I read. I've been looking for a good way to do this for a few months but I was never able to come up with anything that suited me.

I finally saw Ben and Jenn Iverson's booklist blog and thought that it was exactly what I wanted to do. So, I've used a template modeled off of what they have been doing. You can see their booklist site here. Just be forewarned, Ben and Jenn both actually know what they are talking about when they have been reviewing books. My reviews on the other hand...

So, when you get a chance, feel free to stop by and check out my newest reads. Be forewarned though, I rarely read anything during the semester.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everybody! I love this time of year. It sure gets busy leading up to it though. It's hard to get into the Christmas spirit before the semester finishes so once it does Chirstmas preparations are always on the top of the list. Alison, Ada and I had a great Chirstmas. We love spending time with family and we enjoy it when our siblings and friends are in town.

On Christmas Eve we visited Alison's grandparents and ate dinner by candlelight at the Squires. Cheryce gave me a multimeter that night (that reminds me, I need to take it off my wishlist...). We slept there because Jordan called home from Jacksonville early Christmas morning - for the record, he is doing well. From Santa I mainly got money.

One of the most exciting gifts wasn't even given to me. I did get to unwrap it though. My parents bought a Nintendo Wii for the family. It's pretty dang fun. I think that they may be a little afraid of things like this happening though.

On Christmas afternoon, we went to Alison's parents to eat dinner. We got a very interesting gift there as well. Alison's grandma's father and grandfather were involved in the founding of the Lewiston Bank. She has a lot of stock in the bank and she gave all of the married grandkids some shares of the stock. They pay dividends twice a year. The stock has split 5 times since she has owned it. Each share is worth ~$125. The dividends will be our Christmas and birthday presents for the rest of our lives. It's a pretty exciting and forward thinking gift.

You can read a rundown of Ada's first Christmas here. Alison and I are always amazed by the generosity of those around us each year. We are so grateful for the nice things that people always give to us. Hopefully everybody out there had great Christmases as well.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

The Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl - Utah 25, Tulsa 13

Utah played Tulsa tonite in the Bell Helicopters Armed Forces Bowl in Fort Worth, Texas. They won 25-13. I believe that the spread was 4.5 or something in favor of Utah. This is the first bowl game that I have missed in the last three years. For some crazy reason, Fort Worth, Texas two days before Christmas just doesn't excite me all that much. Either way, it looked like Utah had more fans than I expected to be there. Good for them.

For the most part is was a pretty good football game. ESPN's covereage of the game was much better than their coverage of the Las Vegas Bowl. The standard had been set pretty low though. Tulsa's quarterback (Smith) seemed to be off his game. From what I understand, he's usually a pretty good quarterback but he wasn't in sync today (although he was 20-27 for 158 yards).

On the other hand, Brett Ratliff had a solid game (23-34 for 240 yards), Eric Weddle was his usual self (i.e. amazing) and Utah's second best player this year - Louie Sakoda - was named the Player of the Game. When was the last time that a punter/FG kicker was the player of the game in a bowl game? He's been crucial all season, leadig the Utes to being #1 in net yards per punt. That doesn't happen by accident.

The Utes incorporated a couple of interesting plays. They pulled their old hook-and-ladder play out of the bag (from the Fiesta Bowl) and scored. That play was also the play of the day on CNN. Eric Weddle played quarterback for the Utes' last drive. He ran the ball 7 times and handed off once before scoring.

It wasn't a great season by Utah's recent standards. If they could just get rid of the mid-season slides then they would be set. Next year will be tough with UCLA, Louisville and Oregon State on the docket. I can't wait!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

How to Comment

Just like I promised, here is a short tutorial on how to leave comments on a post.First off, find the post that you want to comment or complain about. Click on the 'comments' link below the post and this will take you to the following screen.

Type in your comment (remember that I retain the right to reject any vulgar and unnecessary comments) and type in the letters that show up on the screen (this is to keep the spammers away). Now you can publish three ways:

1. If you have a google account (i.e. gmail, picasa, etc.) you can sign in and publish.

2. If you just want to leave the comment under your name or pseudonym, choose other or,

3. Go ahead and post it anonomously.

Once you've posted a comment, I get an e-mail and the chance to read over it and accept or reject it. I have enabled this feature to keep away any spammers and inappropriate or offensive comments. This is a family site - Happy posting! Posted by Picasa

1,000 Visitors!

Now I've reached a milestone, haven't I? 1,000 visitors to this virtual piece of real estate that I call home. A special welcome to everybody. This picture is a map of where all of the most recent visitors hail from. As you can see, there is quite a worldwide audience, although not on purpose I am certain. You can see my counter in the right pane near the bottom.

As always, everybody is welcome to leave their comments, thoughts, complaints, etc. In fact, I will post 'How to Comment' in a few minutes. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Hello Deer.

When I went outside to leave for work this morning, I saw a herd of deer just across the court. They were all eating the exposed grass on the hillside. There is usually a herd of deer that 'winter' here in the village. It's fun to see them throughout the winter. The only thing that really makes me nervous though is that they've got to cross Foothill Boulevard to get to and from the mountains. So if you're driving on Foothill, watch for deer!

They let me get to about 15 feet away. They would look up as I walked towards them but as soon as I squatted down to take my picture, they would already be eating and ignoring me. I didn't try to get any closer, although they really didn't seem to care. It's always fun to see wild animals up close in nature.

Family Christmas Photo

We sent out Christmas cards to family last week and this is the picture that we sent with them. What a cute little family!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Congratulations! I'm Time's Person of the Year!

Woohoo! You read that right. I've just been named Time's Person of the Year! You didn't realize that I was a celebrity, did you? Actually, I've guess that they've named all of us the Person of the Year. So congratulations to you too.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Christmas Lights

I finally got our lights up a couple of days ago. I wish that I could have gotten them up earlier but, I guess I was a little busy. Can you guess which apartment is ours?

Friday, December 15, 2006

Sissel and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas Concert

Alison and I went to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas Concert in the Conference Center tonite. They had Norwegian singer Sissel as their special guest. It was absolutely amazing. I especially enjoyed hearin Sissel sing. She had an amazing voice. She sang with such power but she was so relaxed. Special thanks to Dan for inviting us!

School's Out!!!

At long last, I've finished another semester. It's always such a relief to be finished. Finals weeks had some ups and downs but hopefully it was mostly good. Here is a quick recap:

1. Final exam in Semiconductor Physics. This was one of the two worst tests that I have ever taken. The questions all had tricks in them and each question had four or five parts to it. If you couldn't figure out the trick (in the first part of the problem of course) then you were up a creek for the rest of the problem. It was an awful exam - but everybody that I have talked to has said the same thing.

2. Final exam in Microwave Engineering. I aced this one. It was great. I'm sure I got an A in the class.

3. Presentation for Analog IC Design. This also went well. The presentation was on the EKG heart sensor chip that I designed. If you're interested, you can download my presentation here.

4. Lab report for Semiconductor Physics Lab. I won't know how this went until it gets graded. It felt pretty good... It ended up being 19 pages (with plots). You can read it here. A picture of the chip we made is shown below.

5. Testing and Design Report for Analog IC Design. This report was also for the EKG heart sensor mentioned above. It turned out to be 17 pages. You can read 15 of them here (The other 2 were full page circuit diagrams).

If you find any mistakes in the reports above, don't tell me because I don't want tp know about them!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Props to Coach Sloan!

The Jazz handily beat the Mavericks tonite at EnergySolutions arena (radium stadium if you prefer, or maybe 'The Dump'...). This win gave Jerry Sloan his 1,000th victory as a coach. He is only the fifth NBA coach to ever do so and is the longest tenured coach of any professional sports team in North America right now. I've always liked Jerry and I hope that the team can continue to keep up their winning ways.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Finals Week...

Welcome to Finals Week! I can't wait 'till its over. I have 5 things to do before I'm done though. They are:

1. Final Exam in Semiconductor Physics
2. Final Exam in Microwave Engineering
3. Presentation for Analog IC Design
4. Lab Report for Semiconductor Physics Lab (12-15 pages)
5. Testing and Design Report for Analog IC Design (10-12 pages)

It looks like there will be some long days ahead - especially considering that I have not really started anything except for some studying. Well, wish me luck!

Saturday, December 09, 2006


Well, well, well. Did I call this one or what? In last January over Civil Rights Day, the Squire family (my parents, Alison and I, most of my siblings and their kids) was down in La Verkin. While there we played a 'Cranium' type game. One of the little challenges was some sort of a word game. I used the word 'truthiness'. Nobody believed that truthiness was a 'real' word. I, on the other hand, knew that this word had staying power. And now, this word has become the Word of the Year!

First off, congratultions to Stephen Colbert and his genius. Secondly, congratulations to me for being so quick to assimiliate into the Colbert Nation...

You can read an AP article on about how 'truthiness' was voted the word of the year here. There was also a Newsweek article written on Stephen Colbert titled "America's Truthiness Teller" that you can read here. It first appeared in the February 13, 2006 issue. Now try and use this word in your everyday speech.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Christmas Cheer!

I had a little free time this morning and I decided to make this place a little more festive. As you may have noticed (If your volume is turned on), I added a little Christmas music to the landscape. There are 7 different songs and they all play in random order. I'm not going to tell you what they are but you're welcome to stay and listen a bit!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

How 'Bout Them Jazz?

The Jazz have slumped a little - but they have still kept up their winnning ways. They still own the best record in the NBA at 15-4. I think they've gone 3-3 in their last 6 games. They've had to play some tough teams though.

Today the Jazz were featured in the Cover Story of USA Today. The article is actually mainly about Deron Williams. Take a look at it here.

Tomorrow is my last day of class and then I have finals next week. Wish me luck!

Friday, December 01, 2006

A Slew of Funny or Interesting Videos

Support World AIDS Day

It's been a crazy busy week. Nonetheless, I always have time to check out an interesting video or two. You can see I also added the "World AIDS Day' Ribbon to the top of this post. I've got to be honest, I mainly added it becasue it's red and with my green blog background it makes the whole thing look very Christmassy, right? Now turn the volume up, turn the music off (the player is in the top right) and enjoy!

This first video is an incredible one from National Geographic about killer whales hunting seal pups. Seal volleyball anyone? Unfortunately, you have to visit their site to watch - found here.

This next video is one of Alison and my favorites. It's of a baby laughing and we find it simply hysterical and cute as could be. We've got Ada laughing a couple of times - but never quite so much as the baby in this video.

This last video is about giant bat eating centipedes in Venezuela. You can watch it here.