Tuesday, May 31, 2011

My book!

Hey guys,
I've been writing up a book in Google Docs. It's an adventure book about three kids (Jon, Jessica, and Juan), and a talking car (SINT) It isn't done yet, and I'm gonna paste it below here. If you want to see the entire unfinished book and get updates on it, sometimes even real-time updates, you need to have a Google account. Send an email to loosliashton@gmail.com with your Gmail address so you can see my book. Here is the first part of it:

By Ashton Loosli

Chapter 1
A Hidden Cave

I've always dreamed about fighting crime. To be a super hero.
To have a super car, patrol the streets looking for trouble.
I'd shoot at the bad guys, put handcuffs on them, throw 'em in jail.
All that was before I would actually get a chance to do it.
My name is Jon Bowler. I live in Utah. School just got out for summer break. I'm inside on a rainy day playing “Star Destroyer II” on my Game Boy. I played for a while, and when I looked out the window, it wasn't raining anymore.
“Mom , can I go outside for a walk?” I asked.
“Sure, but stay close. It's almost dinner time.”
I ran outside and breathed in the nice, fresh summer air. As I walked, I saw a strange pile of rocks leaning against a giant boulder, one of the many creating a huge mountain of boulders. I'll come and check that out later, I thought.
Then I continued on my walk, but there was something wrong. I had a strange feeling that I should go back to the rocks right now. As I came near, I had that strange feeling again. I leaned against the rocks, but as soon as I touched them, I jumped away from them. They had made a sound almost as if they were... hollow. I knocked on one of them, and heard the same sound. I grabbed one of the rocks and pulled hard. To my surprise, it came loose and I pulled it out. Suddenly, there was a low rumbling sound. I quickly stepped back. All of the rocks collapsed! I ducked just as one almost hit me on the head. Another came, and it hit me on the stomach, but I didn't feel any pain. I picked it up, and it was fake!
“Whoa,” I muttered. Then I looked up. The rocks had been covering a door. I heard a high buzzing noise and the door slid open. It was covering a cave! I stepped into it.
It was pitch black. As I stepped forward, I stepped on something. It rolled forward, sending me flying back. As I hit the wall, something coming out of it hit my back. “Ow!!” I yelled. I turned around and felt it. I couldn't believe it! I rubbed my eyes, realized that that wouldn't do me any good, and rubbed my hands. It was a light switch! In a cave!
I turned it on, but nothing happened. Light must be burned out, I thought. As I stepped out the door, it closed and the rocks stacked themselves like magic. I quickly ran home and sneaked in the back door. I grabbed a flashlight before Mom could see me. I also got a light bulb from my lamp and on my way out, I grabbed my dad's ladder and dragged it back to the cave. I knocked down the rocks and entered the door. I stepped into the cave, but when the light from the door fell on a gray panel on the wall I realized that it was a power box. I ran over to it, opened it, and fliped on the one switch that was in it. The light flickered on.
There were TONS of tools, electronics, and other things that I didn't even recognize all over the main room. There was a huge computer screen by the corner with a keyboard, mouse and tons of multicolored buttons. I saw a door leading to another room in the back. I started toward it, but when I looked at my watch, I saw that I had been gone for half an hour!
I quickly ran home, but as soon as I got there, Mom saw me.
“Jonathon Reeves Bowler.” Not the middle name! “You've been gone for more than half an hour. Quickly wash up and sit down at the table.”
Dinner was the same as always. Tommy, my three-year-old brother, was eating his mashed potatoes like a pig. Mom was trying to teach him not to slam his face down in the food. Me? I was just pushing my steak around my plate. “Is something wrong?” asked my mom. “No,” I mumbled. I almost told her everything, but I decided that she would just think that I was making it up.
I went back the next day, knocked down the rocks, and entered the cave. The door closed behind me and I could hear the rocks stack up against it. I ran toward the door at the back of the room and felt like I was flying -- then I slammed into it.
I pushed really hard, but the door was locked from the inside. I looked at all of the power tools surrounding me.
Then I got a great idea.
A dangerous idea.
BZZZZ!!! The chainsaw roared to life. I walked toward the door and realized that I couldn't use the chainsaw unless I wanted to completely destroy the door. I turned it off and found a small tool that looked like a jigsaw. Bzzzz... Not as impressive as the chainsaw, but still effective. I brought it to the door and it sliced through the lock like hot butter.
I pushed open the door and looked inside. I could see a dark shape in the middle of the room.
I flipped the light switch and couldn't believe what I saw.

Chapter 2
The Car

I walked over to it. This wasn't just any car. This was an ebony black GT 500 Ford Mustang.

I tried the door and luckily it was unlocked. I climbed inside and sat down. The seats felt really comfortable. There was a cool dashboard with tons of buttons and lights, but none of them were on. Just then, I heard a high buzz. I gasped. That was the noise that the door made each time it opened!
I quickly ducked down. The door slid open, and I heard two voices.
“But... Agent Cortèz--”
“You know why we can't do this anymore,” the deeper voice, Cortèz, said.
They walked through the door to the garage, and I quickly got in the back of the car. Cortèz opened the car door and said “Well, come on.” When nothing happened, he said, “Jacob, you have to.”
Jacob said, “Well... all right,” and threw something in the front seat and said, “Goodbye, SINT.” He opened the jockey box and pulled something small out of it and placed it by the windshield.
Cortèz pushed down the lock, and Jacob hesitated for a moment, then closed the door. I risked peeking through the windshield and saw them walk out and shut the door.
I slowly grabbed what he'd thrown. It was a key chain, but there weren't any keys that fit in the strange keyhole. The last thing I saw was something you plug into a computer... what was it called? Oh, yeah. It was a USB storage device. I knew that people usually put stuff from a computer on these, and I was about to go home to find out what was on it, but I noticed something strange. The keyhole wasn't for a key. It was a USB port!
I stuck it in and the car revved to life. All of the lights on the dashboard suddenly lit up, and I might have been imagining it, but the car seemed to be rising. I also noticed that the speedometer went up to 500 MPH. I quickly turned off the car.
I really needed some help with this. And I knew just who could help me.
“So, what do you want to do?” asked Jessica.
I had invited my two best friends, Jessica and Juan to come over.
“Let's go exploring in the woods,” I said. They both agreed without hesitating.
When we were really far out in the woods, I told them everything.
“So where is it?” Juan asked excitedly.
“Follow me.”
We walked for about five minutes until we got there.
“This is it?” Juan asked.
I had to admit, it did look pretty normal. I ran over and knocked down the rocks, the door buzzed and slid open, and we all walked in.
“This is amazing!” cried Jessica.
“You ain't seen nothing yet,” I said and opened the door to the garage.
“Wow! Is that a Mustang!?” Juan yelled.
“Sure is,” I said. “Let me show you something.
After I'd shown them all of the rooms that I'd found earlier (the office, kitchen, bathroom, bedroom... they were all in a different boulder, each one separated by a door), we came back to the garage.
“Can you start the car? Like, with the USB thingy?” asked Jessica.
“Well... okay,” I said.
We climbed into to car, me in the driver's seat, Juan in shotgun, and Jessica in the back. I said, “Well... here goes,” and started the car.
VROOM!  The dashboard lit up, the car started rising, and Juan said, “Whoa.”
That was when I noticed the other USB storage device. It was by the windshield. I picked it up and looked around until I found another USB port, inside the jockey box. I plugged it in, and it suddenly disappeared inside the box.
A GPS screen lit up, only it didn't look like a GPS. It had a red line going across the middle. Everyone was looking at it.
“Ssssysstemm reeeeebooot compleeet,” came a voice from the speak-
ers. While it was saying it, the red line on the screen was dancing to the voice.
Suddenly, the locks on all the doors went down.

Chapter 3
We go on a little joyride

We frantically tried to open the doors, but they wouldn't budge. Suddenly, the wall opened up to reveal the forest. The car started backing up through tho hole in the wall.
Then I thought about what Jacob had said. "Goodbye SINT." What if that were the car's name?
The GPS screen had all sorts of strange buttons by it. I pushed one of them that looked like a pistol.
“Weapon load activated,” said SINT. “Listing weapons; grappling hook... complete. Laser... complete. Guided rockets... complete. Chain guns... complete. All weapons ready.”
By then, we were almost to the road. We were driving on an old trail. I pushed a button by the GPS screen that had an arrow pointing up, hoping that it would stop us.
“Turbo jump initiated,” said SINT.
Suddenly, we were flying through the air instead of the dirt, and we were screaming our heads off.
BANG! We hit the ground hard, but we weren't on dirt anymore. We were on asphalt.
We were going 94 MPH. As I said, this baby could do 500.
That was when I noticed that a police car was following us.
As if that wasn't bad enough, they were shooting at us.
“Activating chain guns... complete. Tinting windows... complete,” said SINT.
SCREECH!  We spun around in a circle, now going in reverse. Two huge, circular guns came out of the hood.
CLICNGCLINGCLINGCLINGCLINGCLING! The chain guns started shooting at speeds no ordinary machine gun could do. They were aimed perfectly so that it would take out the front wheels, but not kill anybody or completely destroy the car. It spun around again so that we were going forward.
I felt the pedal at my feet move to the floor.
VVVRRRRRROOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMM!!!!!!!! The needle on the speedometer went to 300 MPH! We were going so fast, it made me feel weird just looking out the window!
I looked up and saw an army helicopter flying above us with it's guns pointed at us.
Pew! Pew! Two missiles came flying at us, but SINT somehow sped up and dodged them.
Suddenly, the helicopter dropped so that it was right behind us. I looked at all of the buttons and pushed the one with a steering wheel on it.
"Manual disengaged," said SINT. He immediately slowed dawn. The helicopter nearly crashed into us, but I floored the gas pedal just in time.
Then I thought of something. When you put something in manual, it goes by itself. When you disengage manual, it doesn't go by itself. That meant that I was in control of the car!
I yanked the steering wheel to the left. SCREECH! We spun around in a circle. I threw it into reverse and floored the petal. I had driven a car with my dad tons of times on the beach. I could see the driver of the helicopter aim his guns at me. I sped up so that there was about 100 meters between me and the helicopter.
"Juan! Push the button with the arrow pointing up! Now!" Juan pushed the button just as I put it in drive again.
VROOOOM! We flew up in the air, barely missing the helicopter's rotating blades.
I started back in the direction that I came from. Before long, I saw the forest trail and turned onto it. As we approached the boulder, the hidden door opened by itself.
I stopped the car in the middle of the cave.
"All right, SINT. What is going on here?"
"Who are you, intruder?"
"My name is Jon Bowler. These are my friends Juan Riveras and Jessica Gusman. Now tell us: Who are you?"

Chapter Four
We have a conversation with a car
"I am the Scythe Industries Nine Thousand. I have the latest version of Scythe Artificial Intelligence, or SAI. My creators apparently thought that I was to dangerous to continue. Giovanni Cortez, the leader of the SINT operation, attempted to shut me down. I had seconds to make a backup of my system before he did. If I hadn't done that, I would not be alive."
We all stared at him for about five minutes. Then I said "So... what do we do now?"
"I hacked into their computer and they have detected that I have been online. They should be coming to get me in about five minutes."
"Well, let's get going then!" said Juan.
"We cannot. I need gas. We can arm the outside with the hidden weapons so that they cannot come in."
“You run on gas? Couldn’t you run on something cool, like liquid nitrogen?” I asked.
“Can we just arm this place?” asked Juan.
"Let's do it," said Jessica.
"Push the red button in the main room,” said SINT
Jessica went the main room and came back a minute later. We heard some motors grinding above us.
"All of the outside weapons have been activated."
BANG BANG BANG!!! We heard something hitting the wall from outside. Hard.
"They're shooting at us!" I exclaimed.
A huge hit shook the entire cave.
"Don't you have any emergency gas tanks or something?" Juan asked.
"Yes... I think I have a few in the trunk." SINT opened his trunk and Juan lugged a five gallon gas tank out of it and poured all of the gas into the tank.
"Jon, Jessica, Juan. You must make the decision now. Would you rather give up school, family, everything and come with me, or leave me and continue with your lives?"
Oh man. Why do we have to make this decision right now?
"Well... I'll have to go with you," I said.
"Me, too," said Juan.
"I'll go with you also... but can we tell our families?”
“Do not worry. I will contact them as soon as we set off,” he said.
After SINT was filled up, we revved up the engine and went out the door. We shot past some SWAT vans and police cars. They immediately started following us.
“SINT, how do we get them off our tail?” Juan asked.
“Push the button that says EMP,” said SINT.
Juan pushed it, and we saw the air ripple around the car. Suddenly, all the SWAT vans’ and police cars’ engines died, and they all pulled over to the side of the road. SINT sped up and said, “You should go to sleep. This will be a long trip.”
“I don’t think I can,” I replied.
“Allow me to help,” he said.
A plume of smoke came from the steering wheel, and in three seconds I was asleep.
My dream was the weirdest one I’ve ever had.
It started out with me waking up in a car that was not SINT. It was a minivan. I was in the back seat laying down. I sat up and looked at the drive. He looked about 20 and had brown hair that went to his shoulders.
He turned around and gave me an evil smile. I saw that his eyes were red. Not pepper-spray-red-eyes, but seriously creepy GLOWING red eyes. He turned back around and kept driving. I noticed red smoke coming from the ceiling. I started holding my breath, but it was to late. I was already asleep.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Adventures with your family

 Today, I went hiking with my family at Antelope Island. It's an island in the Great Salt Lake. There are deer, bison, and of course antelopes. We saw some mule deer grazing.

We climbed around on rocks and ran on the beach. The whole beach was covered in foam! I had an awesome time, and guess what was the best part?
I got to have some AWESOME fun and bond with my family at the same time!!!

Challenge: Do something fun and bonding with your family!

Monday, May 2, 2011

The 7 Habits of Happy Kids Book Review

Are you a kid who wants to be more happy? Well, if you are, you should read The 7 Habits of Happy Kids by Sean Covey. There are seven habits that help you be more happy. Do you want to know what they are?

1. Be Proactive. That means you’re in charge.
2. Begin with the End in Mind. That means have a plan.
3. Put First Things First. That means work first, then play.
4. Think Win-Win. That means everybody can win.
5. Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood. That means listen before you talk.
6. Synergize. That means together is better.
7. Sharpen the Saw. That means balance feels best.

Instead of a long boring book that explains all these habits, this book is fun for kids. It is full of exciting stories that teach kids about the seven habits. My favorite one is called “Jumper and the Lost Butterfly Net.” It is funny because a mouse called Tagalong Allie can’t talk very well and it’s hard to understand what she says. She tries to explain to a rabbit named Jumper that her sweater is on backwards but he is not paying attention. Jumper learns to listen with his eyes and heart, not just with his ears. That means he learned to seek first to understand, then be understood. That’s habit number 5. The author, Sean Covey, also has activities that you can try to understand the habits more. Here is one of the activities: “Try to go one whole hour without talking even once. Instead, just watch the people around and listen to what they are saying.” Do you feel happy already? Well you should read this book and learn more
about these habits. I think you’ll have a lot of fun!

Thanks Abby! Now I want to read this book!

Click HERE to see Sean Covey's book! :)

Pancake Rolls

Don't these look good? Our friend Abby Jones wanted us to write a post about this AWESOME recipe. Scroll down for the recipe!

4 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups milk
3 tsp sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
2 tsp salt
a bit of lemon juice
1/2 of a butter stick

Mix everything together in a large bowl. Drop spoonfuls onto a greased pan (like a cookie). Bake for 8-9 minutes at 350 degrees.

After we tasted them, it kind of tasted like a pancake but in a roll so I called it a Pancake Roll. I gave some to my neighbors on the other side of my fence and my friend really liked them! My family did too and we ate them with our dinner.

-Abby Jones