Weberlife Instafeed

Sunday, December 21, 2008

For the Christmas Card visitors:

Here is what we have been up to in 2008

NEW!!! See our 2008 Book Here

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Weekend in San Fran

We had a fun weekend. Doug went to San Fransisco last week to interview some people at google for his project. I joined him there Friday for some more fun with our friends Mick and Nat.
It was so fun to be in a bigger city around Christmas. The shops were all decorated and it even snowed a little(ok mostly rain, lots and lots of rain) but a good time was still had by all!

We went to a few really great restaurants first: Colibri a great little Mexican place that Doug and Mick found to take us after Nat and I arrived in town.
Then we went to Alcatraz the next day and Spence came down to meet us-it was a lot of fun to ride the boat out and actually see what a historic and beautiful place the old prison is.

Then onto one of our favorite restaurants in San Fran Osha
Sunday it rained and rained and we took it easy and just shopped a bit. Then we met up with our friends Jim and Shelli who recently moved back to San Fran at a WONDERFUL little restaurant called Townhall.
All in all a great weekend!
It has been a FULL and exciting year of travel-we are ready to settle into the holidays with everyone that we love!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Over Chat this afternoon:

For those of you who don't know I
write on another blog Salt Lake Urbanite
Since that blog is public and advertises I have opted to protect Doug's identity from
my sometimes scandalous postings.
So have given him the distinction of Super Man(SM for short)....I didn't realize that not only does he not read my posts there but he also is oblivious of my oh-so-out-of-character thoughtful gesture.

me: did you see the trouble I am causing on the blog?
Doug: no, is it getting crazy?
me: guess you will have to read to find out
Doug: will do
Sent at 1:52 PM on Thursday
Doug: nice
who is SM?
me: super man
Doug: ah

me: you
Doug: :)
that is pretty funny
me: except that you are hotter than clark kent
Doug: :-D

Guess I am not thoughtful enough to not repeat private conversations....
my refinement is a work in progress

Comments and my reaction to Prop 8 post

My post on Prop 8 REALLY ruffled some feathers and I received many ANGRY comments that I chose not to publish.
However there were two that I thought I should share so that it is clear why we disagree(I believe this is the all part of the conversation that is going on in our country currently as well)
So, the following is my response to the most tame of my reactions:

One reader wrote:
Without really getting into the Prop 8 thing, I would like to say that the LDS Church was not the only people in support of it! So they shouldn't be the only ones targeted for protest. Also blacks not holding the priesthood was not an oops thing! You know this! We as a church will not go against the Lord, and it is on His TIMING and in His PLAN that we follow! If you have a problem with His plan, you'll have to take it up with Him!

Yes the LDS church and people were not the only people and church to support Prop 8, just the largest(by way of monetary as well as member support) and since Utah is kind of the mother land, and I live here and disagree, I feel like my voice is kind of drowned out(and that some who know me and know I live in Utah may assume that I agree when I don't) Just as you believe that it is a church's right to tell their members to support something in politics many also believe that if they don't agree it is their right to protest(target as you put it)As the age old saying goes: If you are going to dish it you have to be able to take it.
The other major difference between our beliefs is that I don't think that God would want us to act this way to one another. My marriage and the marriage of a gay couple in no way threaten or lesson one another. If the churches don't want to recognize them that is THEIR choice but to restrict non religious rights based on religious beliefs is, in my opinion, a step in the wrong direction.
I have already taken it up with HIM and it should be noted that god and I are ok with me being Anti Prop 8.

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Prop 8 World Wide Rally":

While you might not agree with Prop 8, the majority of Californians did. If had gone the other way, I would not have tried to sue to get it over turned. The people have voted, and that's what they want, whether you agree or not.
The LDS church was not involved in the vote, other than encouraging its members to support the proposition. And isn't that what churches are for? To tell its member what is right and wrong?
The LDS church didn't donate any money.
I think you are wrong in saying that one day the church will say "oops, we were wrong about gay marriage." It is a moral issue that will not change, and a practice that has always been condemned by God.
I realize you don't agree, and that's fine. That's your right, just as it is mine to believe the way I do.

Some good points, however there are a few things that are incorrect:
1)The LDS church did in fact send money to fund the Pro Prop 8 cause(they are currently, under investigation in California and they are in fact cooperating with the investigation siting that they were within the rules of churches getting involved for their cash donation, phone bank donations, ect)
2) I really don't think that just because the majority of Californians voted on something that we should just walk away-especially when there are suspicions of wrong doing and as you stated, everyone has the right to believe what they would like: that includes NOT agreeing with the LDS church on this point.

Next point:
You and I completely disagree when it comes to churches should tell their members how to vote on anything politically and especially when it is taking rights away from fellow Americans. We are going to have to agree to disagree on this one I am afraid.

The points I brought up(polygamy, blacks holding the priesthood and one I didn't mention interracial marriage) were all once moral issues in many churches and have now been changed(the churches stance is that well I guess: that God changed his mind for a lack of a better way of putting it)

In closing I wish to echo your own sentiment because it is where you and I completely agree:

"I realize you don't agree, and that's fine. That's your right, just as it is mine to believe the way I do."

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

We Love BreAnna!

For Thanksgiving this year we made the treck to Nebraska to celebrate with our sister Rosie and her beautiful family(hi Kevin, Logan, Bryson and BreAnna)
While we were there we did our 2 month pics of our newest niece! She is such a great baby!
We are so thankful for all of our wonderful family and our amazing friends!

Friday, November 21, 2008

::And now you know WHY we live in our tiny place::

I stumbled across this post on my neighbor(and good friend's) blog and asked for permission to post here because it accuratly defines(and describes) why Doug and I have chosen to live where and how we do.
Thanks Tom for your thoughts and expertise!

Slow Home

"There is a crisis of housing. It is a crisis borne not from scarcity but from plenty - too much, too big, and too many.
Large corporations create the majority of our domestic environments.
Our most intimate and important places are built for profit rather than people. The result is a seemingly endless sprawl of cookie cutter houses, strip malls and highway interchanges that are bad for us, our families, our cities, and the environment."
I couldn't agree more. If we are ever going to create neighborhoods and communities that matter I believe this is the way. Go to the site and see the details if you don't believe me.
Slow Home

Here are ten steps to create better homes and better neighborhoods.


Avoid homes by big developers and large production builders. They are designed for profit not people. Work with independent designers and building contractors instead.


Avoid home finishing products from big box retailers. The standardized solutions they provide cannot fit the unique conditions of your home. Use local retailers, craftspeople, and manufacturers to get a locally appropriate response and support your community.


Stop the conversion of nature into sprawl. Don’t buy in a new suburb. The environmental cost can no longer be justified. Re-invest in existing communities and use sustainable materials and technologies to reduce your environmental footprint.


Reduce your commute. Driving is a waste of time and the new roads and services required to support low density development is a big contributor to climate change. Live close to where you work and play.


Avoid the real estate game of bigger is always better. A properly designed smaller home can feel larger AND work better than a poorly designed big one. Spend your money on quality instead of quantity.


Stop living in houses filled with little rooms. They are dark, inefficient, and don’t fit the complexity of our daily lives. Live in a flexible and adaptive open plan living space with great light and a connection to outdoors.


Don’t buy a home that has space you won’t use and things you don’t need. Good design can reduce the clutter and confusion in your life. Create a home that fits the way you really want to live.


Avoid fake materials and the re-creation of false historical styles. They are like advertising images and have little real depth. Create a home in which character comes from the quality of space, natural light and the careful use of good, sustainable materials.


Avoid living in a public health concern. Houses built with cheap materials off gas noxious chemicals. Suburbs promote obesity because driving is the only option. Use natural, healthy home materials and building techniques. Live where you can walk to shop, school and work.


Stop procrastinating. The most important, and difficult, step in the slow home process is the first one that you take. Get informed and then get involved with your home. Every change, no matter how small, is important.

::Slow Home::
In response to a comment on my Slow Home post I am answering here.

How does one afford it?

That is the problem isn’t it? A simple appeal to the consumer will yield little result. The current structure of development prevents affordable alternatives to the status quo. Consumers can’t wait for big developers to change and big developers have no motivation to change. A young family needing a house will purchase the house, out of those available, that best fits their needs. However, just because a consumer buys the best product they can doesn’t mean that it’s the best product for them or the one they really want. If all the cars you can afford are Fords and Chevys and you buy a Ford it doesn’t mean that Ford makes the best car for you. We need a Honda or Toyota in house production.

Look at Daybreak where just a few of the principles of New Urbanism are used – small lots, walkable tree lined streets, detached garages placed back from the street – and you see higher property values and extraordinary demand. All of these things would have been negatives to developers just ten years ago. People buying houses ten years ago might have been happy with a Daybreak style neighborhood but developers were telling them they wanted something different and no one was offering real alternatives. Daybreak is a weak example of what is possible. But zoning codes are still stuck in the 60’s, developers are notoriously conservative and contractors are frightened of change. If it worked in the past why change?

Worse yet if you want a modern house using unique materials in a walkable dynamic neighborhood you run into contractors that are scared to vary from long established routines without charging extra and developers who don't think people want modern homes (they also have no idea how to do them right).

To answer the question of how does one afford something like the Slow Home ethic is a complicated endeavor. Right now I am still figuring it all out. One thing however is sure - it involves a lot more than just the consumer.

I hope to revisit this topic again soon.
Tom Aaron

Posted with Permission

Monday, November 17, 2008

Too Many Monkeys....

Jumping on the bed!

Mom had surgery on her foot last week so Cleo and I went to spend the day with her....when Les got home this was the scene:

AWWWWW! I love my girls!

Photo Credit: Daddy
Stunts: Cleo(winking)

Prop 8 World Wide Rally

I realize that this is a VERY controversial topic but I felt I had to comment.
Les told me about Keith Olbermann's speech that I thought had great insight:

Doug and I walked to take part in the World Wide Rally. I couldn't help be pretty proud of the turnout-esp in a state that funded(congrats to the LDS chruch) a great deal of the Pro Prop 8 movement(way to go! Now we have gay marriage to add to our list of oops: OOPS! I guess blacks can hold the priesthood, and OOPS! I guess polygamy is illegal). Lets not forget that we also have the highest abuse of prescription drug addiction-I'm so proud!

I completely disagree with Prop 8 and think that we as American's will feel pretty embarrassed to have this as part of our history(have we learned nothing?)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Blank Slate filmed in SLC

TNT's Production of Blank Slate came to SLC and I was able to be the stills photographer-it was a lot of fun and a whole new experience!

Here are some of my shots:

Eric Stoltz as Sean Sullivan

Lisa Brenner as Anne Huston

Clancy Brown as Agent Miles Mcavoy

Directed by John Harrison
He also played Thomas Hale

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Happy Voting Day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

On Saturday Doug and I took advantage of early voting and then Monday my
Pretty Mama voted for the very first time! I am so proud of her!

My Pretty Mama

Saturday, September 27, 2008

An update from Paradise:

Ok everyone, I am going to prepare you now...this next post may sound like I am bragging but I am not....for those of you that fear you may be too jealous to continue to be my friend stop reading now and I will downplay the details for you later.

So. We are here in Phuket(aka the most beautiful place in the world) with all of our closest friends(family excluded)
having the time of our life, staying at one of the most exclusive resorts in the country(and possibly the world) free of charge(Doug had a meeting here...actually he is in meetings most of the day, but not me!)
This place is a dream! Doug and I have our own Villa and Mick and Nat have their own. We have 3-4 butler/cooks/maids at our service 24 hours a day(which is kind of hard to take but I am trying to enjoy the experience) Our swimming pool overlooks the ocean,

we have our own private beach(where they bring you drinks and fix your umbrella when the sun changes)

there are a fleet of mercadies to take you wherever you would like to go......I can hardly believe this is real(see previous post: Is the real) It is hard to describe the experience here but let's just say that the king of Abu Dabi is staying in our Villa next week and it is Bono's favorite(Kate Moss has stayed here twice!)---it is that awesome!
Each night we return from dinner to find candles lit in our courtyard leaeding to our Villa and freshly picked Jasmine on our bed. Our laundry is taken care of, you order your meals and eat them at a beautiful table overlooking the ocean while listening to thai music.
I can't stress enough that the service here is out of this world. I mentioned that I don't like chicken....boom they remember, I say I like tea with breakfast no sugar, no milk-done it just comes every morning without me saying a word. The people here are so gracious and friendly....they take pride in their work something that is refreshing since sometimes in the US that is hard to come by.

So far on our trip we have:
Been scuba diving,
learned to cut fruit(an art in itself)

sat on the beach and pondered the meaning of life
gone shopping in Phuket town

The next few days there are a few more activities.....

I could go on and on but a picture is worth a thousand what: that's right:

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Doug + Mickelle 5 years ago today

5 years ago today we were married, we became husband and wife, Mr and Mrs Weber.

I have enough to say about the past 5 years being married to the most generous, kind and lets' face it-hot man in the world, but right now, inspired by Les and Tom's blog I want to tell you my cherished memories of our wedding day.

Many of my memories aren't just from the day of. Most of them come from planning. It all started by me announcing to my mom that we were getting married, in two and a half months, while Doug talked to my dad. My parents were their normal, supportive selves and my mom's only thought was exactly HOW I thought we could throw together such a celebration in such short notice!

Doug proposed at the sight of our first kiss(on the A at Utah State) and with the help of Tom and Les(who weren't married yet but have always been there for us whenever we need even today) I was so shocked when the fire lanterns surrounding the A were meant for me!

We told Doug's parents and they were excited for us! Then we proceeded to call each and every member of our extended family....everyone told us how excited they were-that meant so much to us both!

Now it was time for the flurry of planning, registering, shower attending and well-mayhem! I was living in Logan and starting my senior year at USU at the time so my mom was my master planner! She really did make everything possible!

Through the whole planning process Doug and I had budgeted out each item and carefully decided how much we were willing to spend. We were pretty successful but when it came time for the dress I found "the one" and it was WAY out of the budget. I called Doug and he responded simply: "if that is the dress then get it--I want it to be perfect!" I couldn't help but feel overwhelmed by his response-I felt like the luckiest girl in the world!

As the day grew closer there were showers to be attended hosted by my wonderfully talented sister Leslie and my best friend Jen. Both were amazing and I felt so lucky to be surrounded by those that I love most!

The night before the wedding we had our rehearsal dinner hosted by Wayd and Alice(Doug's parents) it was so much fun! Once we finished Doug took me back to my parents house and we talked for awhile with Rosie and Kevin and my all seemed so surreal and I couldn't believe my wedding day was actually here!

The next morning everything was calm-dad made breakfast while mom did my nails and we just hung out and talked. As I was finishing last minute touches Mom and Les got their hair done and I headed to the mall. I know it is against the rules to be alone on your wedding day but I was and it felt right-it gave me time to realize what was going on and to think and to be happy and excited!

I went to get my hair done, came home and my mom and Les loaded my dress in the truck(all the while freaking out that it might get dirty) and I remember that my Dad insisted that he be the one that drive me, while Mom, Les and Mike came over in the car.

As we drove over to the reception center I don't remember anything we said but I remember that my dad did what he always does: he gave me some advice, made some small talk and told me that I would figure anything out that came my way. You see that is how my parents are-they tell you the theory or lesson and then throw you in to learn the reality all on your own- the wisdom in it is too magnificent for words.

Then it was time to get ready. Most things are a blur but the important parts are still there:
Les making sure everything was perfect, mom trying not to cry, Doug arriving late because he was too busy averting disaster with the tuxes and rental car, and giving each of my bridesmaids a gift and letting each one know what they meant to me.(this was the only time that I cried at my wedding, which seems weird, but if you know me it makes sense)

Then it was time to go! I met my dad, walked through the sea of faces representing my past, present and future to Doug, who's tears mixed with a BIG grin reminded me of exactly why I was so lucky to be marring him.

We toasted, talked, danced we sang happy b'day to my Grandpa Bench(it really was his birthday)and finally left on our honeymoon, beginning a life that I can only describe so far as rich, full and while always changing-is always complete.

I will post a pic when we get back home in a few weeks-we have changed A LOT in 5 years!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Pinch this real?

i consider myself to be pretty lucky in most ways and feel that all in all i lead what one might consider a full and rewarding life.
So today when I walked into our own private villa in Phuket and I turned to Doug and said "I can now die happy" it had to be pretty amazing
In case you are wondering, yes, we did make it all 26 hours of our travel through San Fransisco, to Hong Kong then to Singapore, then to Phuket today about 2 pm local time.

The trip, happily, was uneventful and even Fischer(mick and nat's 1 year old), who is by the way, the most amazing baby of all time, was in good spirits once we reached Amanpuri.

Here are just some quick pics from when we arrived


Monday, September 8, 2008

Vancouver How I love thee-Let me count the ways:

Me: I love Vancouver....I don't want to leave
Doug: Yea, Vancouver kicks Salt Lake's ass

We spent our last weekend in Stanley Park. This has to be one of the most amazing places on earth. If we were to move here people might have to double take to see if I was a bum because I might just LIVE in the park. I am not joking, there is everything: The ocean(complete with beaches, restaurants, ect) Thick beautiful forest, a lake, a gigantic community swimming pool overlooking the ocean, kids water play area(complete with dryer...I am not even kidding) an off leash dog area....the list is endless. We just spend the entire weekend there. The first day we rented roller blades and skated around the perimeter of the "park" Then yesterday we spent the day exploring the center part and then finished off with a sunset walk on the seawall and some pizza near the beach. THIS is the place(I find myself wishing Brigham Young would have discovered Vancouver so my ancestors would have followed him here instead and I wouldn't be left trying to figure out ways to illegally immigrate here)

Cleo and I watching the float planes take off

watching the cruise ships take off

We kept finding these HUGE leaves....yep it is fall!

Lions Gate bridge that connects Vancouver to the N. Shore

Roller blading fools(let's just say that Cleo was her normal self since she had to keep track of two of us....the second time out was much more treacherous)

This was the scene on 2nd Beach at sunset....someone had made all of these....sculptures? it was surreal and so beautiful!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Roller blading-a west coast workout staple-Apparently

Seriously there are times when I'm pretty sure I could make it as a reality tv show star just by having a video camera taping my every adventure(think Mr Bean-meets sex in the city-meets reality). Evidently I have yet to acquire that oh so standard-in-everyone-else fear of public embarrassment thing I always hear about so:

Everyone roller blades here in Vancouver and I hadn't done it since about 5th grade. I remember the craze, got some for Christmas, used them exactly 3 times and then forgot about it. So instead of trying the obvious(easing into it) I went ahead and took my self(all decked out in rollerblading appropriate gear) my dog Cleo and some seriously misguided courage straight to the seawall(tons o people, lots of things to run into)

To get things started off right I forgot to bring a bag so I had to hide my shoes in the bushes-off to a great start. Then Cleo, in all of her wondrous ridiculousness, informed me that she is terrified of roller blades by-you guessed it-cowering and tripping me. Luckily she quickly figured out that they wouldn't eat/maim/or otherwise harm her and we were off!
We managed to make it from Richards street(from this beautiful little park with these beautiful yellow metal lawnchairs that overlook the bay.....just awesome) all the way to the Cambie Street Bridge along the seawall(a glorious 40 minutes or so of pure bliss)

All in all it went really well(I didn't do anything reality tv worthy...which is, by the way, a good thing) In fact I was so encouraged by my performance first time out after 12 years or so that I decided to just roller blade home.

One small problem: I had never learned to STOP(well other than grabbing on to something or just skating onto the grass)

This was not so much of a problem on the seawall because it is fairly flat and smooth. The sidewalk(and crosswalks, oncoming traffic etc) is an entirely different story(keep in mind that I still have my dog, who is crazy)

The way to our place on Robson is uphill mostly with a few severe downhills in between(a detail that escaped me on the walk there nearly everyday we have been here)and is in the middle of the city. There are about 20 stoplights from here to there so you can imagine me, not knowing how to stop grabbing onto ANYTHING appearing stable in order to avoid rolling into oncoming traffic, and not choke my uncharacteristically well behaved K-9 in the process.

When we made it through the front door Doug asked how it went in his usual sunny manner(with undertones of "surprised you are alive...this should be interesting") and I reported to him that our first outing had gone well( I should mention that he looked pretty surprised) "Now" I told him "I just needed to figure out how to stop"(and then proceeded to show him how I had tried to stop like you do on ice skates) He laughed, tried to explain ALL of the physical reasons that stopping like you do on ice skates would never work and then pointed down at my skate and said: just use your brake....."gasp! my what?" I made the same face at him that I do when he fixes my computer with a look of complete horror and disgust(why does he have to be so damn reasonable and calm all the time anyway :))

Needless to say next time out should be more fun for me and less scary for oncoming traffic(and oh yea Cleo)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden

China town(N. America's 2nd largest apparently) is not too far from our place so we decided to partake this past weekend.