Monday, December 29, 2014

The Unibomber Does Gingerbread and Christmas Too!

 Yep, this is the week of Christmas festivity!!  On Monday Spencer and Brittney took Trevor and Nell's kids for the day so that Nell could get some uninterrupted  sleep ... one of the activities was to bring them to our house to make gingerbread houses ....

 Everyone seemed to be having fun ... when I stopped in for an occasional visit, but mainly I spent the day reading, doing laundry and a few last minutes Christmas things ... that night, after Dad got home from work we had dinner and watched some Big Bang Theory.

 Brittney even tried to teach me how to make origami cranes, these were made with paper colored by Eva ...
Tuesday was Briahnna's birthday and Darby put together a lunch group to meet at Cafe Rio in Spanish.

 Dad was working in Salt Lake, just a bit too far to join us, but we definitely missed him.
Cousins comparing casts!!

 Afterwards Becca with her kids and Eleanor in tow, met me at the animal shelter in Spanish. I am finishing up my 'good deed' list in the book I bought at Anthropologie with the gift certificate I got from Brittany a few years ago.  It was kind of fun and kind of weird to do deeds thought up by a 20 something in NYC...  Yeah, I never did learn to call my barrista by name, doing the same with a waiter instead.  I also vetoed the 'constructive criticism' suggestion. But the animal shelter was fun, if a bit of a downer, and the kids liked it a lot.

I stopped by the Hall home in Orem to drop off Kim's 16th birthday gift.  Kim had just arrived home, and was sitting in the car she had just had her first crash in.  Not a lot of damage to the car, the bumper came off, something her Dad could fix.  Note that it is sitting next to her in the car!!  She was a little blue, though her parents had been amazingly kind, as near as I can tell.
 Dad and I both worked on Christmas Eve, the next day ... and Brittney and Spencer put together a Hanukkah celebration for us, and Darby, who would be working from 6 to 6 on Christmas.

 Christmas morning, we found 'the kids' at the bottom of the stairs waiting for us to come down.  They had made us breakfast pizza to fuel our tanks for the day.

 and then the four of us opened up gifts .,..
Brittney loved this little plate she got from Eva.

 .... after our opening gift time, they went down stairs to open gifts from her family, while Dad and I put together the gift baskets for our family.  This one is Trevor and Nell's.  I loved the Kensington  Station clock, since Eleanor's middle name is Kensington.

Everyone arrived around noon for a Christmas brunch and the opening of exchange gifts.

Eleanor shows off the Sleeping Beauty apron that Aunt Emily made for her.

Dad and I loved the Blog Books we got from a group of the kids.

We also enjoyed books, jewelry and other gifts we received from others of our posterity.

The signed Harry Potter glasses and glasses case were possibly my favorite gift to give this year.
 Of course the snow was also a gift, really.  The weather had been in the 30's to 50's with one day in the 60's all December, other than the skiff of snow we got the last Sunday Emily was here.  We hardly dared wish for snow.  So it was amazing when we woke up to 6 inches and large fluffy flakes falling for much of the day!!  (It also helped me finishing off my good deed because one item was to shovel snow for a neighbor!!)
On Friday, Dad was off work and helped me with a few more items on my Good Deed list, including an impromptu picnic, which we happily held in the garden house with the faux gas stove turned to high!

 That evening we drafted the kids to come up and watch a movie with us.

 On Saturday, I was off to work, where I took some pics of the booth of a gal who had had her booth at Vintage Whites photographed for a national magazine.  I took the pics and did a blog post. on my Pollyanna Blog.

And while I was busy at work, Britt and her kids in Idaho, were enjoying their slightly less marvelous snow, doing some sledding!!

And Dad was at Megan's, getting part of her shower tiled ...

And Emily was off thrift shopping in San Antonio!
I love this outfit she found for Bekie.

Sunday is picture free, but I attended three sacrament meetings that day.  First at one of the care centers, then our own ward, with Brit and Spencer, then last of all in Highland to see Krista Moe's homecoming.  She did a great job, and I am sure she was an amazing missionary. OK insider information, I didn't just know that just from her talk, which was, by the way amazing, I know it from reading her letters home.  I had another of those moments, when I kind of regret not having served a mission myself.  

When we got home, Dad and I spent the rest of the day reading, with a couple of episodes of Big Bang and a movie in the evening.  A very quiet and nice day, all in all, followed by a long winter's sleep.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Life AE (After Emily) and Spencer and Brittney Return.

 Twas the week before Christmas, and time for good bye ...  as Emily and her children fly home to Texas.

I finished out the day doing some junking in Salt Lake, and then meeting Scott for dinner at Cafe Rio in Spanish.

He'd spent the day doing inventories.

Tuesday Dad worked his half day, more inventories, of course, before heading to the temple to do his shift.

I did some cleaning, visiting teaching and then snuggled in for an evening of reading.

 On Wednesday I worked, but spent part of the day crossing good deed tasks off my good deed journal list ... about 40 things left to do, but one of the things was to put flowers on a monument of someone  you admire ... a head stone is a monument right?  and it meant that I had to finally find Hannah Ann's headstone, with some help from Trevor.  Thanks!!

After dinner Dad and I went to one of the care center's Christmas dinner.  This center is one of four in the branch in which Dad serves as a counselor, the Grand Vista is an assisted living place, which makes a Christmas party possible.

On Thursday I worked again, and was delighted when Spencer and Brittney stopped by to say hi.  They'd come in the night before and spent the night at Brit's sister Angela's, as it was closer to the airport and it was very late.  It was so great to see them, and helped me get out of my funk after having had Emily leave.  

After work Dad stopped and got me and we went to see Krista.  She'd gotten home from her mission the day before, and it was open house time.  It was great to visit with lots of Moe fans, and to get hugs from the new and improved Krista.  She is just as fun and outgoing as before but now has such amazing spiritual depth!  She's an outstanding girl/woman.

 We snuck over to Heuer's for a visit with them, and Robin shared her funky new 'nativity'.  Its an idea that's been appearing on FB and pinterest.  Love it!

 On Friday I had an appointment to see the Christmas decor of one of our customers.  I loved the homey feel of her place, though I don't really do primitives myself.  To the right is a torn rag garland I made for a display at work a couple of years ago.  She bought it and made it amazing.  She hung it on a berry garland then made fun ornaments from blocks and beads to hang from it.  So inventive, and so charming.
I giggled a little when I saw this sign she had on her wall.  That night Dad and I met up with Moes at the Heuers' house for dinner and sappy Christmas movies on Hallmark, that at least the Perkins and Heuers love, and the Moes tolerate ... hey, isn't that what friends are for?

 On Saturday it was Moe and Heuer time again, as we traveled to Salt Lake to witness the son of our mutual friends, the Masons, as he got married.  Matthew is the same age as Spencer, Eric Moe and Daniel Heuer.   After the wedding Dad headed north to work on Megan's bathroom some more, while I rode with the Moes and Heuers as far as the park and ride in Highland ... then I was off to do a bit of junking and grocery shopping for Bethlehem dinner the next day ... Bethlehem dinner number 2 that is!

 Sunday morning I worked on my Relief Society lesson on the birth of Jesus Christ. Then after church at the nursing home, it was our church and teaching the lesson ... I was so tempted to add details unearthed in our day, but kept feeling I should stick with the lesson.  In Sacrament meeting another gal gave the whole 'things we now know about the time of Jesus' birth', and I was so glad I'd stuck with the simple story.  It turned out to be lovely.

Of course that evening we reenacted it all with our Bethlehem dinner ... here we see a shepherd getting to know a little angel.
 another angel and shepherd combination ...
then we let the meal begin, breaking bread and pouring new wine ...

 Darby brought her friend Heber to this second edition of the meal, which was lots of fun ...
 and we loved this little shepherd turned royal, Zach!
 Mary and Joseph start their long journey around the parlor, as Dad reads the story from the scriptures.

The angels sing .... (not sure why the one angel is holding Baby Jesus, but we are flexible around here.)
 The shepherds are amazed at the song of the angels.

 ... and here we see the bearded and balding ... such a good looking bunch of young men, don't you think?
then suddenly its time for good byes ... "Grandma can I have my halo?"  I love these people!!