Monday, June 16, 2014

May 25, 2014

 past couple weeks has been very busy. I figure that the culminating event was the Temple to Temple Relay yesterday. We ran from the Rexburg Temple to the one in Idaho Falls. It seems like the things that I have done in the weekend are the more interesting things to write about. One thing that I have enjoyed in the week that I would like to write about is people. Before I get into that since this is the introduction paragraph of this entry, I would like to write about the interesting things that I have done over the weekend. I won a mile race; ran my first steeplechase; had my first experience in a construction site; had a picnic with my Temple to Temple Relay team; said goodbye to a good friend, who quit school; hung out with an old FHE sister; watched a couple movies; went on adventures, exploring stush apartments; studied how to frame a wall; home-teaching; & more. I wrote a journal entry dedicated to my friend that quit school, but Jesse did not feel that he would be comfortable with the details that I wrote, since he is a peculiar person. I should copy and paste the paragraph that Jesse thought was appropriate to publish now; then, I will write the precepts that I am prompted to, enjoying people during the week and weekends. We had a philosophical conversation about life on Logan's birthday last year. Logan is the good roommate that I had for more than two semesters, who quit, and I would like to relate the philosophy to you.
     We had a really cool FHE group, and a sister was leading us on a hike to a secret special refuge spot that she use to visit every week. Her name is Loretta Lepley. She may still do it. On our walk a debate sprung up about the word chemistry within relationships because Jesse felt that there was a good chemistry among our FHE group.  I forgot what the girls was saying chemistry meant to them. It is probably the stereotypical meaning. Chemistry to Jesse, who was the main philosopher, taking on the girls, related chemistry to throwing a bunch of people together. How the relationships get along is the chemistry. Some groups get along well. Some are unstable. Some are boring. Some don't relate. Logan, Jesse, and I had good chemistry among each other, and taking him out of our groups is going to mess with the chemistry. It's like taking a Hydrogen molecule out of water. Hydroxide is not healthy to consume. Stabilizing the chemistry is going to be interesting.
     The one thing that I love about my God, the father of every man's spirit, is the he hears my remembrance of him and his beloved son Jesus Christ as prayers, granting according to my righteous desires. One of my desires is to be a great friend to people. I always wish to be prompted to befriend and further deepen friendships with people especially during my meal times. Meal times are sacred social times especially family dinners. I consistently see the guidance of the spirit of God to opportunities to befriend and further deepen friendships. I sincerely seek these opportunities; occasionally, when I reach the end of my possible realistic search to visit with someone, a friend to befriend will be provided still. I don't believe that my precepts of this paragraph needs an example to be understood, but I will give one anyways. One lunch, I was looking for someone to eat with. I am sensitive to not be super awkward, walking around too long to find this person, but I reach the end of my possible realistic search. As I stood about to sit alone, a classmate identified me, inviting me to eat with her, and I was able to befriend her.
     I will now move on to the weekend interests. During the mile race that I won. I went out to break the record for the true mile of 1609 meters. I was disappointed to find that I ran exactly 5 minutes for the race. I heard the second place person, coming behind me, as I slowed down in the second half of my race. The pace that I started out with was on track , but I did not endure to the end. That was the first race of the track meet, and a final race of the meet was the steeplechase.
     I was planning and not planning to run the steeplechase because I spoke as if I was going to run it; however, when the team was trained to jump over hurdles, I was too scared to jump over a three and a half foot hurdle especially ones that do not fall over like the ones in the official race. I did it though for the experience. I could not overcome my fear of jumping over the hurdle, but I made it through the race. My attempts to jump over the hurdle was what I would do, if I had to jump over a small fence quickly. Jumping over the hurdle in one leap is a lot more effective than my approach. It was hard to keep up with the top pack, since I did not overcome my fear.
     The track meet was on Friday evening, and I had my first experience at a construction site on Saturday morning. Having to leave early, I planned a gathering with my Temple to Temple Relay team, and I said goodbye to Logan in the evening.
     The construction site experience was installing drywall in someone's basement. My first experience was snapping a chalk line. Since we were putting up Gypsum board, we needed to break it to let the board fix the wall. After breaking the board, I was given the opportunity to screw the Gypsum board into the studs. This opportunity was a first for me, using an electric drill. I was working with two classmates, and they seemed to have gotten impatient with me because I was slow. A funny thing was that they were making so many mistakes afterwards that it was probably just as slow. Since I had to meet with my Temple to Temple Relay team for a picnic, I pulled back from the from the situation, leaving early.
     The picnic went well; although, none of the girls ran with us. Our plan was to jog to Nature Park. Brenden, Devin Collins, and I arrived in about twenty minutes. Brenden has been on all three of my Temple to Temple Relay teams. He is a friend from my first apartment complex before I moved to Nauvoo Housing. I know Devin from Boy Scouts. He was from Gilroy though. We went to a hiking place called Philmont. We only knew each other from the one trip, and I had not seen him until I took the Family Foundation class at Brigham Young University - Idaho. We were sitting right next to each other, and we did not recognize each other. We were talking about where we were from, and we recalled that we hiked Philmont together. We have not hung out very often, but we have done a few things together since then. Our relationship is reverenced as a great friendship. When Brenden, Devin, and I arrived at the park, we expected to meet with a few other team members. Jesse Kaupert was planning to do another style of workout that day, so he didn't run with us. He was on our team though. Paige Dexter, the roommate of Naomi House, was planning to drive up our lunches. It was taking Paige a long time to come. We were probably waiting for at least twenty minutes; maybe a half hour or more. We were chill though, chatting. When Paige and Jesse arrived, we were surprised to see that Naomi, who was planning on running with us, was with them. She came with the bad news that she hurt her ankle somehow, so she could not run. We ate our lunches briefly, deciding who is going to run what legs during the relay. Naomi and Paige left early to chill next to the lake. We joined them later, and we practiced, skipping rocks. Naomi and Paige could barely throw well, so they had troubles. We enjoyed ourselves. Paige could not run with the team during the relay either because she had the rare opportunity to see her father.
     This weekend was Memorial day weekend. Logan left us that evening. On Monday an former FHE sister visited us, and we played soccer. We also watched a movie with Paige and Naomi. We may have planned to go see a movie, but we never made it. I am trying to recall, if we went exploring and star tripping. I don't really like star tripping, but the other girls enjoyed it; plus, we went to a park as we explored, and I had already spun around a lot on a thingabob. Star tripping is when you find a dark location outside, and the stars need to be out. You spin until you are dizzy, and someone shines a light in your eyes. When someone does this, you lose your sense of balance, and you just fall over without any control. Maddie and Jeanette were hanging out with us, and Maddie has a chronic problem, not having enough blood in her tall body. When she star tripped a couple times, she began acting as if she was drunk. She could barely walk, and her sense of logic was off. I assume that she didn't have enough blood in her body to get a good amount of oxygen in her brain. I am unsure if we did this on Memorial day Monday or watching a live action movie about the Oneders or Wonders, a one hit wonder band from the 60's.
     We ran the Temple to Temple Relay the following weekend. Naomi found a couple runners to replace Paige and her. These runners are named Kelsey and Hannah. Our team members were the following: Aubrey, a roommate of Naomi; Loretta; Brenden; Jesse; Hannah, Kelsey, Devin, and I. I loved this team because everyone knew each other. There was not one person that did not know another member of the team prior to the race. Brenden knew Devin from last relay race. Jesse knows Loretta, Naomi, Aubrey, and I. Loretta was an FHE sister of Jesse's and mine from last spring semester. Hannah knew Loretta from mountain climbing, and she is Naomi's best friend's roommate. Kelsey was a friend of Naomi's. I loved the natural fellowship of the team. We were not concerned about time and place. I don’t even know the pace that I ran. We had time to hang out with horses, feeding them grass. I have never fed horses before. A few were dominate, and a few ran when we gave them grass. Not many stops had bathrooms, and many of my team needed to use the restroom. It was funny because three of our legs had to start with another teammate, since they were not ready to receive the baton, when our runner arrived. That runner was Hannah. During one leg, hanging out, we skipped rocks, but we didn't skip them off water. We bounced them off the road, trying to hit a fence post. When Hannah finally ran her leg, which was the last leg. We were surprised that it was taking so long for Hannah to finish 2.6 miles. It ended up that she got lost, having to run about a mile extra. Our results showed that we finished twelfth, but I say that we finished top ten because we were only a few minutes slower than the other teams ahead of us, since Hannah got lost, running an extra mile. After the relay, we were planning on going to the zoo, but we decided not to. We did enjoy eating lunch at the Olive Garden. On the drive home, I asked out Hannah, but she did not return my call or texts, so I let her be.
     Today is Friday June thirteenth. I am on a bus ride home after enjoying a tour of the Jackson, Wyoming office of the Big D Signatures department of the company. Last week was mid-terms, and I had two tests. I also had a test this past week for ARCH 100. I got decent grades on each test. I don't have anything to complain about. It was a little stressful though, facing a test covering fourteen chapters.
     Things are finally normal after the Temple to Temple Relay. I usually go to the temple each weekend, but we have been busy. Jesse and I went to the temple last Saturday, and I invited Paige to join us. Deanna joined us too. She is another roommate of Naomi. We did initiatory, and ate at the Hickory after. It was refreshing to hear the words of the initiatory ordinances. I like getting the Big S Burger at the Hickory because my family has a tradition of eating grill cheese sandwiches each Sunday. The Big S Burger is a half-pound burger with two grill cheese sandwiches as the buns.
     I also ran in a track meet this past weekend. I felt very fast during the week and some workouts, so I was inspired to run an 800 meter race. I did pretty well. I was disappointed in the pace that I ran the second lap. I only had one competitor. When we started the first lap I sat on my opponent to see his pace. Since his pace was not following my strategy, I passed him about 150 meters into the race, finishing the first lap in 60 seconds. Here is my disappointment I ran the second lap 10 seconds slower than the first; however, I did win the race. I was happy about my results. I don't really run the 800. I focus on the longer distances. I ran the 5K too, but I did not race too my potential because I could not know my pace. When I ran the first 5K, people told me my pace each lap, but they did not do that this time. The timer on the score board did not start until my third lap or so. I just ran it. I ran about a minute and a half slower than the last time that I ran the 5K race. During the meet I would stay aloof from everyone else because I don't want the sun to drain my energy. I relaxed in the shade, and another athlete joined me; then, after I ran, I was surprised to see that girls of my distance team was hanging out near the tree that I was in the shade of. They were not in the shade though. That was nice to have everyone else join me.
     I received an email from Brother Stutz, who is the organizer of the track, cross country, and many other events at the school. He invited me to apply to be a coordinator of Cross Country in the Fall. I would basically organize and promote the competitive sport. I hope that I get the position. I have many ideas to promote it. This was exciting as well as the Big D Signature's construction site and office that I visited.
     Big D a high-end construction company working of becoming a billion dollar corporation this year. Their quality of work is exceptional. A competitive advantage that they have is that they collect old wood, and they can be employed to build houses with this wood. The wood is beautiful. They built their office, and the old wood was touted as i beams, structural, and interior details. I was wondering why the beams had square notches in them, but my teacher informed me that they were where the joists and other beams were inserted for structural purposes in older buildings. They led our crew to a construction project called Paint Brush Point.
     At this location a river in a national park was being polluted by a building falling into it, so they devised a plan to fix that part of the national park. The river was dilapidated, so they had to hire a guy from Alaska to restore the river banks. Big D was so impressed by the skill of the guy, describing him as a painter of a physical river bank. Restoring that building was important too because it has historical importance. It was property of the Rockefeller's, if I recall correctly. They reached a restriction though.
     The setbacks of the property let Big D work with only a few square feet. This is how they solved the problem. They approached a neighboring property owner, and Big D asked them if they would be willing to trade property with the national park in order rebuild to the Rockefeller cabin. The neighbor approved. Big D said that the cabin did not have a foundation, so the first few logs were rotten. My framing systems teacher, Ron Kinville pointed out that the structures to contain the foundation concrete were assembled different than usual. I don't fully understand what he was saying, but my connection is that there is lumber placed on the outside. I think that the lumber makes the exterior face look like the cement is wood as the picture shows. They also built the foundation that way because it was the old standard.





     The owner of the property was able to build their third home here. The supervisor, showing me around, said that he did not know the names of the owners, but he provided me information that would make it easy for me to discover who the owner is. The owner is on the board of directors of a corporation. They have two children, and two other homes; one in London and the other is in California. The supervisor even provided a name of a child and the corporation, but I don't think that it Is appropriate to disclose them. The owner had the house be built in separate parts within the property.
     The property had many original concepts for me to consider. They have a two floor garage separate from the main living area of the residence. This building seems to accommodate guests, for the top garage can be accessed from the street. The design of the buildings were not very open, for the top garage's stairs leading to the living area of the guest did not let them access the living area without them going outside of the building. Their seems to only be one way around the house. I don't know, if this is common. On the main living building of the residence. The residence seem to protect their privacy by having their personal and entertainment rooms only be accessed by a uniquely designed spiral stairwell.  The entertainment room is not an average room either. A bookshelf is going to be a hidden door like in the movies, leading to a wine cellar. The spiral stairwell was unique because the it is not going to be supported by a structural member coming up in the middle, but the stairs are held by the wall, surrounding them. The spiral stairs leads down to a deck that can be accessed by the children's rooms, and other ways that I don't know. The deck can be retracted, uncovering a hot tube. The children's rooms can be considered as too luxurious because the doors to them are curved, costing about three thousand dollars each.

The non-exclusive area of the top floor has a deck too. The interior finish living area of this floor and other parts of the house is a beautiful cherry wood, and the view of this room is gorgeous too. The picture that I got is lousy because of the lighting, but you can get a hint of the view and the cherry on the ceiling.


The supervisor pointed out an architectural flaw in the design that they had to address, and fix. The structure did not hold the wall underneath the windows well enough, and the walls would rattle with the wind, pressure, and door shutting.


 Walking out on the deck, I got a picture of the boastful yoga/ art studio and the river. This upper level has two fireplaces, and one was original to me because it is an exterior fireplace.

I call the yoga/art studio boastful because it is going to have two chandeliers and an impressive stereo system. Another original idea of the studio is that the large glass windows are doors; however, they do not open up to a deck. They don’t open up to anything. The studio has a steel post foundation, requiring insulation underneath the floor. The doors that led people out to nothing is illegal; unless, they have a railing signaling that the door does not go out to a deck. The owner insists of not having the railing, and they plan to have one installed temporarily.




     I wrote much of this journal entry on the bus ride to Jackson, Wyoming, but today is Sunday, the 15th of June. I am jumping further into the future in each paragraph of this entry. This week I did not hear about my track meet until Thursday, so I have not been mentally preparing myself for the meet yesterday. The training that I have been receiving with my team has not been maintaining my confidence. Every time I run, training with a team, when we run speed workouts regularly, I actually feel that my speed is slowing down in races because I am not getting enough mileage in the week. I want a minimum of 30 miles a week of running. We don't get close to this. This is messing with my mental preparation. I actually feel weak running, and I don't feel like racing. This is why I decided to not race yesterday. I have goals, and I don't feel that I am on track to achieve them. What is the use of running to achieve high level performance, if your training and mental state is not good enough to support the goals? When the time came for the meet? I did not feel like running fast like how I would need to in an event a mile or shorter. I did want to beat my current 5K time though. I have only ran it in 18 minutes. I can run faster than that. I have been focusing to much pacing myself well, and I thought to race without pacing myself. The track meet didn't run the 5K this week though, so I just hung out, watching my teammates. They did the steeplechase, and I took pictures. Ryan ran the mile, about the same time that I ran, a five minute mile. An air show was going on at the same time as the track team. Jesse and Joe were planning on going the whole week, but I was not interested in going. We were also planning a bonfire last night.
     We were originally planning on going to the ice caves. We were hoping a lot of friends were going to come, so we decided to go to the dunes instead. After devotional, I ran into Nick Hicken, who contacted me to meet each other a couple weeks ago to connect our lineage with Patriarch Thomas Hicken. His email was this.

"Hey Alexander,

Hey my name is Nick Hicken and I was looking up another Hicken on the school directory and saw your name and I'm just curious if we are related and how so.
I know my great great grandfather was Thomas Hicken, so don't know if you come from that line.
Anyways, I just wanted to connect with you so just email me back if want.
Thanks.

-Nick"

And my reply was this.

"Dear Nicholas Hicken,

I am Alex Hicken, the son of David Glen Hicken, who is the son of Glen Irwin Hicken, the son of Irwin Hicken, who served a mission in Japan, when the great earthquake destroyed many cities, who is the son of John Henry Hicken, who is the son of Patriarch Thomas Hicken, who was in the first stake presidency of Heber City, Utah, a first settler thereof.
Do you eat at the crossroads much? I oftentimes indulge in good company there.

Sincerely,

Alexander Nielson Hicken"

We met up, and we got along well. He really loves Bob Marley, and that topic came up easily because I served in Jamaica, which I am proud to say got their first stake last weekend. Nick feels like Bob Marley  is a man sent to Jamaica like Buddha, Confucius, and other religious figures like Muhammad. Well at the devotional I invited him to the bonfire, saying that there will be a lot of girls because we invited four apartments of close friends. Our track record does not match our hopes though. Only Naomi came. None of our FHE sisters came. Jesse invited an old friend and her apartment because we had our haircuts done by her, and a good friend turned out to be her roommate, who I was thinking of asking out. Jesse also invited another ward sisters apartment. Naomi's roommates didn't make it either. We expected more people to come, so Nick invited a bunch of his friends and roommates. They were named Jon, John, Keith, and Brian. I did ask the girl out, who is the roommate of Jesse's old friend, and she came. Her name is Chelsea. I decided not to write about this date. It was Jon, John, Keith, Brian, Nick, Naomi, Chelsea, Tyrel, and I, who went, and Naomi's best friend, McKayla met us out there with her boyfriend. Nick's friends were good sports. We waited nearly a whole hour for Jesse and Tyrel to come with wood and glow sticks.
    John was funny because he is studying to be a mechanical engineer, and he is all into explosives as his desired profession. He jumped on building the fire, and had a huge fire going in less than five minutes. He said that he camped every weekend from age eight to eighteen or something like that. He was coaching everyone on how to cook hot dogs and s'mores. After the initial fire that John made started dying down, we played stick ball.
     This is the second time where we went to the dunes, having a bonfire and a game of stickball. Jesse cut the glow sticks, and poured the liquid on tennis balls, and the game is similar to Golf. We are trying to throw our ball into a bucket in the least amount of throws, and the distance is determined by a partner, hitting the tennis ball with a stick. Jesse calls it a dowel. It is the rod in a closet that holds up hangers. We enjoyed the game. A few funny things happened, but I only recall one to tell you. A few friends and I were gathered around the bucket because we already finished throwing our ball in it, and tennis ball without warning flew down and hit me in the chest. It hit me hard enough that the glow stick fluids splattered on my shirt.
     Yesterday is now Sunday, and I want to finish this entry. I finally got out into the field from my church calling, which is a missionary chairmen for the Elders Quorum. It is a basic role to help all the struggling Elders. We separated into two groups with the Elder's quorum presidency. We both had about five people to contact, but none of them lived at their apartments. One supposed to have lived at my apartment. Gratefully I noticed before we knocked on my apartment door. We only found one person in our list, and all the others are in an unknown location.

     During Sunday school, I was instructed to go to a Family History class, which taught us about familysearch.com and treeseek.com. The web programming is messed up on my account because the information on my father's account about my mother's side is not showing up, and we live in an age where work does not need to be doubled. It should show up in my genealogy. One thing that we were instructed on was connecting sources to our names to validate that the information was accurate. The instructor was saying that if you make connections with the ancestors, their additional work that they have done should be added to my profile. I could not find how to do that, but I did find some sources proving that I have two brothers and my mother is our mother. My brothers were not even listed, when I first started my work on familysearch.com. 

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