Friday, January 14, 2011


So, I realize that we haven't posted in quite a long while. So here's the catch-up.


Halloween was the major event. I wasn't sure if Matt really wanted to be Woody and Jesse from Toy Story, so I procrastinated making our costumes until 2 hours before our ward's trunk-or-treat. So the end result definitely wasn't as polished as it could have been, but I still had fun with it. Thanks Dawn for the Joann's gift card so I could get the material!


This month I decided to attempt a gluten-free trial. Surprisingly enough, I actually stuck to it this time, and discovered, that I am sensitive, if not allergic, to gluten. This requires me to get a lot more creative when it comes to meal times. But so far, I've done pretty well, and I feel a whole lot better.

We spent Thanksgiving with my Kau and Pannell cousins in Provo. We ate delicious food until we could eat no more, and then lounged around talking with everyone. It was a really fun and relaxing holiday.


December brought the end of the semester for both of us. Lots of stress, lots of studying, and finally relief once it was all over.

Our anniversary was on a Sunday, so we celebrated on Saturday with a nice restaurant, Temple Square Christmas lights, and Tangled....which turned out to be adorable. It's kinda strange that we've been married for an entire year already. The time went very quickly.

We celebrated our Petersen Christmas on our anniversary, since we went down to Arizona for the 25th itself. We had our little 4 foot tree decorated with white lights and Christmas ornaments we've been collecting over the years. We opened our presents...which took a very small amount of time, and then enjoyed them for the next couple hours before we had church. So naturally, I settled into my new Chronicles of Narnia series, and Matt started a new video game.

We spent 4 days in Arizona--that's all our work schedules would allow--between our 3 sets of parents. It was a busy 4 days, but it was great to see our families again. We had Christmas Eve with Matt's family where the highlight was a spontaneous nerf-gun war...SO entertaining. And then Christmas was split between my family. It was warm, and wonderful to see our families after we'd been in Utah for so long.


January means the start of school again. We had a scare with Matt's tuition. He missed a deadline for applying for Utah residency, and his application was denied. We went to an appeal, and luckily they granted our request. So Matt is a Utah Resident. I am a secretary at a local CPA firm along with my previous bookkeeping job. And both of us are in school full-time.

So, life is good.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Haircuts and heavy loads

After much himming and hawing, Erika finally decided to chop her hair off Friday night. I must say it looks rather good. She certainly thinks so, and is having no end of fun tossing her head and using headbands to make the get-up even cuter.

Plus, her 11 inches of hair has been donated to worthier causes than Erika griping about how unpleasant it is dealing with her hair every day.

While her head may be lighter, or respective work/school loads have only gotten heavier this month. Erika's taking on a few extra hours a week at her bookkeeping job. She gets paid really well, so it's a welcome income bonus.

Meanwhile I'm still slugging away at UVU, working at Utah Community Credit Union, and covering games for both the Daily Herald and the UVU Review.

I may be transferring from the Pleasant Grove branch of UCCU so I can get morning hours that better suit the rest of my obligations. I'm up for a morning position at the Springville branch as well as a Titles Clerk position at the BYU Stadium branch (next to the football stadium)

Speaking of football, the Herald is bringing me along to help cover the BYU-UNLV game on November 6. I'm very excited to get in that atmosphere again -- even if the Cougars are no longer contenders.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Miles for Melanie.

The point of this post is to advertise a 5K happening this Saturday to benefit my beautiful Aunt Melanie. Unfortunately, Matt will be working, but I'll be going and anyone else is absolutely invited to attend.

Register for it here. All proceeds go to the Melanie Kau Foundation.

If you'd like to learn more about the reasoning behind the 5K, you can visit her blog:


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Now and then

With school in full swing, Erika and I are creeping ever closer to graduation. I've heard after this magical point, school no longer exists. I can't imagine that, but I sure try.

I'm toying with the idea of finishing a semester early (Fall, 2011), if only to get school over with and have an extra semester to find a writing gig while Erika finishes up her master's degree. Erika likes the idea, but I have to see if I like the load I'd have to take to get it done. Being able to is one thing, "wanting to" quite another.

Erika is also planning for the near future, lining up several interviews for winter/summer internships with members of the notorious accounting "Big Four." She's got three interviews in the bag already, with several more still pending. I have no doubt she'll land one. Luckily they're all local, with the farthest one from us being in Salt Lake.

As for the present, we're fully invested in school and work. Erika's part-time job now allows her to work on her own computer, which means more convenience and less travel for her. Combine her now-mobile job with her studies, and she spends quite a bit of time at the library.

I say the library because Erika's transportation has been limited to her bike lately. It's my fault. I drop her off at BYU at 8am, head to UVU for class, go to work at the credit union, then cover a local game. It makes for less together time than we got accustomed to over the summer, so a slight, but necessary bummer there.

Latest big thing to happen was a phone interview I had with Phoenix Suns' forward Grant Hill. He could only give me ten minutes of his time, but the interview itself and subsequent article were well worth it.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Back pains and work gains

It's a little weird writing something without worrying about an editor's opinion. Check that, my wife is right here making sure I write an approving piece. Sigh...

It's been an exciting few weeks, with a little bad and lots of good in the mix. The bad was Erika's back -- for some reason unbeknowest to us, sudden back spasms hit her a week-and-a-half ago. She was bed-ridden for two days. Thanks to the advice of our parents and a med student buddy of ours (Dr. Dave), her back kept improving and now is pretty much healed. Only a slight amount of stiffness remains.

One nugget of advice from my mom that Erika loved was the purchase of a Wii Fit (probably the only purchase Erika loved in her life...she hates spending money). Apart from the regular exercises, we can actually set up specific routines that string our favorite exercises together. It's a much more friendly workout option than the classic visit to the gym. Honestly, Erika's a lot more consistent with it than I am (the Wii Fit even tells Erika's character that my character hasn't been in for a while. The game tattles on me!)

Still, my lack of exercise isn't an indication of lack of work. The opposite, actually. With fall sports starting up, I've been getting a lot more story assignments from the Herald (and the college paper as well). The most exciting story happened just yesterday: covering the BYU Cougars' football season opener. It was amazing.

For obvious reasons, Erika was very proud of me, and took a picture of me leaving for the game, complete with press pass and laptop backpack (her backpack -- she let me borrow it).

It sounds a little silly to talk about a sports game as personally meaningful, but this one was. I walked into the huge press room at LaVell Edwards Stadium and felt the atmosphere of both crazy sports and professional media people. I saw my place-holder tag at my station, the view on the field and thought, "Yes. I was meant to do this."

At about the 5:00 mark of the fourth quarter, all the reporters went down to the field to be ready for post-game interviews. With the Cougars making a last (and ultimately successful) defensive stand for the win, the atmosphere was electric. Being in the middle of all that was mind-blowing. I probably looked like the big-time rookie I was -- constantly swiveling my head and taking it all in.

The interview room had 12 arena-like chairs for reporters. Since there were plenty more than that and I was a rookie, I stood/squatted on the side aisles. I guess I could have taken a photo when actual coaches/players were at the table, but I was too worried about missing anything important.

There were five reporters from the Herald there -- four full-timers and myself. It was really great of my editor to ask me to come along. I wrote the notebook story on the game, which consisted of a small lead story followed by random facts and tidbits. Some of those facts were obvious, others I dug for before finding a correlation (like the "Fifty's the magic number" point).

In short, it was a great experience that made me feel even better about my career path -- and my ability to do well in it.

Saturday, August 7, 2010


After about 3 weeks of extremely early mornings, and then class, and then covering a game, Matt decided he couldn't wake up at 3:15 anymore. He gave 2 weeks notice, and has continued his job search. I was a little nervous giving up one source of income when we didn't have another, but I also knew there was no way Matt could have that schedule long term.

A few days ago he had an interview with the Utah Community Credit Union. The interview went great, and they seemed really excited about his experience. They said they'd call the next day with their decision. So we waited, all day on Friday for their call. They close at 5:30 and it was now 4:00, so our hopes were getting smaller and smaller.

And then as he was talking to the Employment Specialist for our ward, he gets a phone call. And yes! He got the job. We are both extremely excited about it. No more early mornings, he can do this job long term during school, and Matt is comfortable with this job. He'll be extremely busy when Fall starts. He has class, the credit union, games for the Daily Herald, and starting in October he'll be covering home Jazz games. Well at least that makes two of us!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Summer Stories

A few tidbits from our summer:

  • With Lechuga needing food, we've recently experimented buying feeder fish. This has proved highly diverting. Fish #1 had zero survival instincts, just swimming in place next to Lechuga, who needed a couple seconds to realize that yes, the thing next to her was edible. As soon as she did, the fish was no more. Fish #2 was much more intent on staying alive, making Lechuga do several laps around the tank before finally snagging her quarry. Erika loves watching until the fish is actually caught, killed and eaten.
  • While waiting for an employee to get out Fish #2, a boy around seven or eight years old noticed we were getting a fish. He excitedly imparted his own experience/knowledge, telling us how "fish can get really big" and his friend's fish got too big "and it died." Eager to one-up the kid with morbid fish stories, I ignored my wife's pleading glances/nudges and told the kid, "Don't worry. This fish won't get big, 'cause we're feeding it to our turtle." Wide-eyed and shocked, the little boy looked at me and said in a disturbingly level voice, "That's a joke, right?" Having had my fun, I appeased both the kid and Erika. "Yeah, it's a joke."
  • I experimented with a 4-8am custodial job at the university to give us some extra cash. Didn't last long. My eyes are constantly in exhausted pain, while my body always seems sluggish and behind on its normal schedule. Luckily school sports are picking up, which means assignments from the Daily Herald are as well. In the mean-time, I've got an interview this week to work at Utah Community Credit Union. Can't get away from those credit unions, it seems.
  • Speaking of writing, I'm really excited to start a sports writing internship with They're getting me media credentials to cover the Utah Jazz courtside for the entire 2010-2011 season. Can't believe my luck. Livin' the dream.
  • Erika takes extreme pleasure in not only coming up with good home-made meals, but in perfecting them. The most recent example of this is her awesome home-made pizza, which rivals any pizza joint in town. She even uses a round pizza tray. So good.
  • More proof of Erika's creativity - she's been making these headbands for her sister's upcoming wedding. I've gotta admit, they look better than the ones you'd pay 10 bucks for at the local fair or accessories store.