Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Induction Ceremony

Monday was Brandon’s big day. We got up at 6:30 which was really tough since our bodies were still on San Diego time and it felt like we were getting up at 4:30. The ceremonies all started at 10:00 but the doors opened at 8:30 and we were there right when they opened.

I’ve always prided myself on being able to get around well and not get lost and so when the GPS devices were first invented I sort of poo poo’d the whole concept and figured they were for people who couldn’t read a map. I’m now completely sold on GPS devices. My android phone is now an extension of my body and I’m not sure how I could live without it. Let me just list a few of the many things I use my phone for daily.

-       making phone calls
-       taking pictures and videos
-       calendar and meeting reminder
-       sending and receiving text messages
-       transferring files from one place to another
-       address list (including the stake directory)
-       reading books (including the Bible etc.)
-       identifying stars in the sky
-       looking up material properties on the periodic table
-       watching movies and tv shows and listening to the radio
-       converting units (1 W/mK = 18.49 BTU in/hr ft2 °F)
-       checking my altitude
-       a compass
-       paying my bills and transferring money in my bank accounts
-       music player
-       tape recorder
-       reading bar codes
-       checking the temperature
-       dictionary
-       checking the tide
-       measuring the calories burned and how far I run
-       translating Alex’s Spanish words
-       making trades on my fantasy football team
-       and then of course there are the myriad games that you can play

And now I am a huge fan of GPS. Martha (my phone) got me all over Austin and San Antonio and we didn’t have a single missed turn or anything. It was great. Brandons ceremony took place in the Frank Erwin Center and we were the first people to walk into the place. We could have sat on the very front row but we didn’t because we weren’t sure when Brandon would get there and if we wasn’t right in front of us then we would have a good view of him. Instead we chose to sit on the front row of the next level up. As it turns out we would have been able to have Brandon right in front of us but hey, how can you know? We still had a clear view of him.

The ceremonies were pretty cool because they had the Texas Supreme Court judges sitting up on the stand and the Stake Court of Appeals judges. Some how I though they were the same but apparently not. Some dude stood at the stand and called out in a loud voice, “OH YAY, OH YAY, OH YAY!!! All stand for the Supreme Court of Texas.” Or something like that. It was very interesting. They then spent the next half hour introducing each of them giving their entire life history which may have been interesting for Brandon but not so much for me.

They then gave out some awards for various things and then came the swearing in ceremony. They did their best to make it a solemn occasion and they did a pretty good job. Serene and her girls along with Serene’s mother and sister also sat with us so we pretty much took up the entire row. The girls were really good through out the whole thing which really didn’t take too long. 

Sydney was full of some really good comments this weekend. You’ll have to get Lisa to share them with you but one good one was when she asked her Grandma (Sydney was glued to Grandmas hip the entire weekend), “So is my daddy a lawyer now?” Lisa told her than yes he was. Sydney then asked, “Will he look different now?” Lisa told her that he will just look like a daddy lawyer. She is a very bright girl.

Sydney may love her Grandma but Hailey loves her Grandpa. She would sit on my lap for hours and cuddle with me. I loved it. One time she was upset about something and Brandon asked her if she wanted to go to her mother or to Grandma. She reached out her arms for me. I think that alone made the trip worth it. I really miss those girls. Brandon needs to get a really good paying job so he can bring his family to visit us often.

After the ceremony we took Brandon, Serene and the girls for lunch. We asked Martha for a good place to eat that was close by and she suggested we go to Stubbs Barbecue. It was good but not as good as the place we went to after his graduation ceremony. I think it was called Blues Barbecue. It was still very good but what was really interesting was the building it was in. 

You could tell it was very old and made of native limestone. It was on the edge of a steam and was built into the side of the hill. It had a large courtyard and several huge rooms that are now being used to put on shows and it is full of many smaller rooms. I wish I had been able to explore the entire place. As we were leaving one of the workers was outside having a smoke and Brandon asked him when it was built. The guy said, “In the 1860’s, it was originally a Mormon settlement.” How cool is that?

After lunch we kissed our little granddaughters goodbye and then we hugged and kissed Brandon and Serene goodbye and we headed south to San Antonio. It was so good to see Brandon and his beautiful family again. In case you don’t know, Serene is expecting a baby on Christmas day and for being just a few weeks away from delivering she looks really good. 

For ten years scientists have been trying to figure out how a key enzyme involved in aids is folded. Some one decided to make this problem into a video game called "Fold It" where gamers with no bio-chemistry experience try to fold a shape. The gamers solved the problem in ten days.


Lisa said...

It was a great weekend!

Alycia (Crowley Party) said...

YAY Brandon!

Fred ... said...

Congratulations to the newest attorney in the family. Hope Brandon finds a decent job. Love Aunt Nola