Dec 31, 2011

At Least They're in the Mail...

I have a few rules for our family in regards to Christmas Letters.
1.  We send them.
2.  We send a family picture. (Adults included.  Your old college friends want to know if you've let yourself go.)
3.  We take the picture on Thanksgiving day, order the prints from Costco the next day, and send them on the 1st of December.  (Okay, so that hasn't happened in like 5 years and 2 kids.)
4.  Last and most important, the letter has to be funny.

This year, I got way behind.  My famous cousin Wendy of Blue Lily Photography offered to take our photos, but couldn't do it until until the second week of December.  (She's a busy lady!)  No problem.  She's worth the wait. 
(See below.)

But then, I waited to start the letter too.  Didn't get around to it.  And when I DID sit down to write it, it wasn't easy.
I didn't have any great ideas for a "theme".
Nothing clever came to mind.
So I just started writing and ended up with two (TWO) long, depressing, single spaced pages.
NOT acceptable.
I started editing and revising.
Finally, I just started over from the beginning.
About three times.
It was a painful process.  (It was a painful year.)
I ended up with what you see below.  And although it's not my best work, it got the job done.  And I got to say "hell" in a Christmas letter.
Needless to say, last year's letter was a whole lot more fun to write.  But then, 2010 was a lot more fun.
(I wont even mention the trauma I had using Mac's Address Book and trying to find a way to change the font...)

SO, there ya go.  At least I did it.
Here's to a boring 2012!  (Makes the letter writing so much easier.)

Dec 26, 2011

Trip to Utah!

Twelve hours, and a few pears to get to...

Grandma Fae and John's house!

FINALLY!  Play-doh time with Grandma Fae.
Being popular is exhausting
Bowling at Doug's Alma Mater:  BYU.
Doug rockin' Ms. Pac-Man.

Then heading farther North to see the W's.

Angry Birds

Snuggle and bottle with Aunt Beth and Spence

Snuggle and bottle with Grandma W.

Just as long as I have a bottle, I'm good.
Grandma Fae met us at Temple Square in S.L.C. to see the lights.

The boys were impressed.

The lights were lovely as usual.

Mother and Son(s)
New Year's Eve Fondue Party at Aunt Lisa's.  Yum!

Gray was into it.

Monster Tree

Puppy Love (ick!)

Happy New Year!!!

Dec 25, 2011

Christmas Day

Everyone goes down together, youngest to oldest.

Strange how our lack of money affects Santa too!

Don't feel bad, they had presents under the tree too...!

Merry Christmas!

Dec 24, 2011

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve - Congregating at Moonlight Beach headed for...

Super low tide at Swami's.

Gabey and best-buddy David...

Searching the tide pools...

...and stomping on nature...

with family and friends. 
Finding a "Brittle Star"

and sharing it.

Happy as long as he's getting dirty.  In a hole.

Then home for dinner.
Cousins waiting patiently.

Traditional Mexican feast including enchiladas, tamales, Mexican hot chocolate, and guac.

The after dinner entertainment begins.

Poor Mary...heavy with child...

...and what a child!!!

Angel Gabriel watches over all.

4 beautiful girls and 4 handsome boys...all cousins...

in their new jammies...

ready for Christmas.

Dec 20, 2011

Final Farewell for Tami and Wes

The TamiWes family are headed for their next assignment in Argentina.  (I don't use last names on my blog.  So should I call them Tes?  Or Wami?)  Wes is going to be a foreign exchange student at an Argentinian Officer Training School.  (This is NOT official terminology...I'm sure there are like 20 acronyms to describe what he's actually doing.)

(Have I mentioned before that Wes's job is cooler than YOUR job?  Well, it is.  Sorry.  Doug feels your pain.)  (And yes, I have mentioned it, but I like to brag because I'm friends with a fighter pilot.  Sue me.)

On their way out of town, they stopped at our house for a few-night breather.

And some pacific ocean and beach time.  (Even though it was a little chilly.)

 It was, as per usual, very very fun to be with them.

Love this shot...!
But also sad.

Wes got to play with the kids while Tami and I chatted.
This time when we said good bye, we couldn't say "We'll see you again SOON!".

Although we hope and plan to visit them in Argentina, well...we have to hurry up and actually make some money first. 

Lots of Read-a-Thon's!
There are some aspects of military life that really sucktink.  And here we are out of the military and they're still stinky!!!
Saying good-bye to friends who are going far far away for a long long time is one of those things.

Good bye Tami, Wes, Camille, Madeleine, Cameron and Baby (Emily, perhaps?)!
We'll miss you!
HOPE to see you SOON!!!