Sunday, December 30, 2012

Issue 241

Christmas 2012

 We had a delightful Christmas this year. We decided to do Christmas morning at our own home when we realized that we won't all be home for Christmas together the next four years. Whitney will be gone on her mission the next two Christmases and then Steve the two after that. So, we made the most of it.

Then it was off to Grandma and Grandpa's to open gifts with everyone on Noreen's side of the family. Everyone gives such thoughtful gifts, it's always a highlight. It was especially fun to have everyone in the family there.

Then it was off to Christmas dinner at our other Grandma and Grandpa's. We had a fun time eating, visiting, playing games, opening gifts and eating some more. We missed those who were sick or too far away to come. All around, it was a wonderful day.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Issue 240 December 16th - 22nd

Park City Escape

To avoid some of the busy and rushed feelings that the holiday season can bring, we took the week before Christmas off and enjoyed some time at my parents' Park City condo. The first night just Steve and I went up to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary! We had an amazing (that's an understatement) dinner at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse in Park City. The next day we brought the kids up for the rest of the week. Jesse got to join us on Wednesday for some cross country skiing. We also went swimming, watched lots of Christmas movies, did more cross country skiing, played games, and generally relaxed. I feel a new tradition coming on!

Merry Christmas!

 From our family to yours, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful 2013!

Issue 239 December 9th - 15th

Hobbit Time

Daniel read the Hobbit this semester and as a reward he got to go to the Midnight premiere of the movie with Dad and Steve L. He was so excited to go and created his own dwarf costume for the event. People even wanted to take their picture with him because he looked so cool.

More Hobbit Time

This week Whitney got her braces off (for the second time), took all her BYU finals, and arrived home in time to go to the premiere of the Hobbit with her boyfriend Jesse (yes, it's official.) They went as Galadriel the Elf and Pippen the Hobbit. They actually ended up with tickets to go twice, once at 8:30 and then again at midnight. Since they had both just finished finials, it was a little hard to stay awake for the second showing.  What a fun way to start the holiday season, and just look at that beautiful (and expensive) smile!

Christmas Party Time

One of my (Noreen) favorite things I get to do is be the School Board President for our high school. I work with amazing people, both on the board and in the administration. Because of budget cuts this year we decided not to do our traditional Christmas party at a nice restaurant. I volunteered to host, although I've never thrown a nice sit down dinner party before. Luckily, my mom came to the rescue with all her nice dishes, linens, and decorations. She helped me set up too! The party for 29 was a big success and so much fun.

Issue 238 December 2nd - 8th

Grandma B turns 90!

 Grandma B turned 90 this year! Boy did we have a party. So many of her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and New Zealand friends showed up to celebrate. Such a wonderful woman. I hope I am as happy, mentally sharp, and loved when I am her age. We love you so much Grandma!

Scout Camp

Steve is in his 5th year as the scout master for 12-13 year-olds. Good thing he loves it! Our boys have been so fortunate to have their Dad be so involved in their scouting years. They camp year round, and their December camp was at the Harry Potter fort. Ironically there was no snow to be found this time around.

Issue 237 November 25th - December 1st

Semester's End

Daniel worked so hard this semester in all his classes. He has grown leaps and bounds and is doing great things. As a reward for completing all his assignments in history class he earned a trip with all his classmates to Boondocks for unlimited lazer tag, slick track, and video games. He had a well earned blast! Way to go Daniel, we are proud of you.

Ellie's Baptism

I cant' believe our baby just got baptized. Ellie was so excited and looked so beautiful in her white dress. 

Ellie chose her brother Steve to baptize her and her Dad to confirm her. It was so special to see Steve confidently baptize her and think that he'll be a missionary in a couple short years. Brought tears to mom's eyes to see them both in the font together.

I asked my dear friend Denise to make a gluten free cake to celebrate Ellie's baptism. She outdid herself with this beautiful creation that was enjoyed by all who came.

The Nativity

Our ward put on a beautiful Christmas party with a live nativity. Ellie was so excited to be a shepherd and was riveted to the newborn that played baby Jesus. She's the shepherd in the yellow robe on the left. The best Christmas Pageant ever!

Issue 236 November 18th - 24th

Missionary Backpacks

The Elders came to dinner and were impressed with the duct tape backpack that Ellie had created. They asked her to create some missionary backpacks for them. They loved them so much that they came back for three more for their missionary buddies. Ellie can create anything with cardboard from the recycle bin and colored duct tape!

Issue 235 November 11th - 17th

Fabulous Forties!

I hit the big 40 this year. It's actually a milestone I've been looking forward to. Steve threw a surprise party for me at our favorite Indian restaurant - a first in our 20 years together! Here's to a great decade!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Issue 234

Snow Cave

The girls were so excited with our snowfall this weekend. They spent hours with Dad building a snow cave on the deck. That night they researched how to make it better and have plans to make one big enough to sleep in!

Mr. Bromley

Dad attended private school when he was growing up and had a mentor that inspired him to love bird watching. I've heard about Mr. Bromley for he last 20 years! Steve reconnected with him via email, and recently we took the kids to meet him. He had a room full of biology wonders and the kids loved hearing his stories. It was wonderful to finally meet this legend of a man. We have many years of birding fun to thank him for!

Issue 233 October 28 - November 3

Halloween 2012

This year for Halloween we had two Egyptian Princesses and a Navy Seal!

Issue 232 October 21-27

A Day of Firsts

Saturday was a big day for Steve L. That morning he took his first ACT test and in the evening he went on his first date! His best friend wanted to take out Steve's cousin, so they doubled to a REAL soccer game. He went with his good friend Lucy and had a blast.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Issue 231

Eight is Great!

I can't believe our baby is 8 years old! She started off her special day with breakfast in bed. Chocolate chip pancakes (gluten free of course) with strawberries and whip cream was her menu of choice. The day seemed to take forever to pass for her, while we did our Saturday chores, but finally it was time to party! Whitney came home from BYU for the weekend and we invited Jessie (her not boyfriend, boyfriend) to dinner. Pizza and pumpkin cake to go with the presents and ice cream. Ellie received many craft supplies to do what she does best, create! The other day I commented to her what a good artist she was. She answered, "When I was younger I wasn't very good at art, but know that I'm older, I'm better. I'm creative and smart!" Yes Ellie, you are creative and smart and friendly and spunky and curious and loving and about to get baptised!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Issue 230 October 7th - 13th

Witch Festival

For field trip Friday this week the girls choose the Witch Festival at Gardner Village. Nothing like a few dozen witches to get you into the Halloween mood.

Antelope Island

The scouts headed out for a rainy adventure on Antelope Island. They lucked out with a pavillion, so they used our 12 man tent as a wind screen and stayed as dry as possible. The next morning they attacked a 10 mile bike ride including a 23% grade hill. Scouts can do hard things!