Sunday, December 28, 2014

Our Vernal Life (a video)

It has been easy to feel trapped or stuck in Vernal and pick out all the thing that we DON'T have there, or all the weird things that they DO have there and just be anxious to move.  And although we have no set dates yet, we are moving.
However, Vernal has been a big part of our lives; this is where we bought our first place (like grownups) and where Rai was born, where we learned what life is like without Luke or I in school, and where we lived for almost a year and a half now (that is almost half of Tracen's life). 

I wanted to do something special for Luke for Christmas and decided to make a video of some sort.  I decided to make a video of the past year - but it was hard to know when to start it, and when to end it (I didn't want to cut out anything).  I finally chose to feature our life during the time we have lived in Vernal with only the video clips that were on our phones.  Watching the clips and putting it all together made me realize just how blessed we have been, and even if we don't live in our dream place, we live a wonderful happy life.  It ended up being a gift to me as well, as I found new appreciation of life. 

This video is mostly for our family - but if you want to lose 12 minutes of your life, you are welcome to watch. It was also too long (and I am too cheap) to upload in HD. 

I also want to make record that there are 3 songs, and each is a favorite from the year.  The first one is by Dotan and is Luke's favorite, the second is Coldplay and the third is a cover that Erika and Jenelle did of Gabrielle Aplin. 

Click here

And I also want to make it a goal to try to see more positives.  The negatives are easy to spot and dwell on, but there is always good.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


 I was reluctant to take the boys to go see Santa at the library.  I didn't know what to expect,  and then when I found out you needed tickets, and I didn't have them - It just didn't seem worth it.  Luckily, a Mom in our play group got some extra tickets, and I decided we had nothing to lose.  She also got there early and got our tickets numbered so that we were at the beginning of the group.  Tracen immediately spotted the basket of candy canes on the table beside where Santa would be, and I told him that he had to wait for Santa.  Finally Santa arrived and read all the kids The Polar Express.  Most of the kids were sitting quietly on the carpet listening....
 While Tracen was making his way behind Santa to try and snag a candy cane... behind Santa, but still in front of the entire group. 

 He did manage to get one out, before I got up there and put it back.  For someone who hates to be the center of attention, Tracen sure puts me there all the time. 

All Tracen asked for was "decorations" and was pleased to finally get a candy cane.  I got a picture before Rai burst into tears and started trying to get back into my arms.  
 If only the candy cane would have met expectations. Tracen wasn't too pleased to find out that it was peppermint and "spicy"... this is his face when he had a taste.
In conclusion, the library does Santa right here in Vernal.  I feel like I am learning all this information about Vernal a little too late.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Thanksgiving 2014 American Arizona Style

With a mish-mash of photos from my phone and the camera... here is a brief overview of our (American) Thanksgiving holiday.
We left on a Friday, picked up Jamie and Chet's new couch and then drove to St.George and were lucky to stay at Chet's parents place for the night.  We got up early and drove the rest of the way to "Grammie's Phoenix".  There is something about 70+ degree weather in late November that I really like.  I am pretty sure that we warmed up the hot tub and we all went for a swim.

On Monday we did a hike (or part of it) and Tracen happily said "good-mornin" to everyone that walked past us.

After the hike we ate a delicious breakfast. 

We were the crazy Canadians on Tuesday morning as we went swimming at the marriot in the 56 degree weather. 
Luke got to go golfing on Tuesday with his Dad, Dave Cichy and Bill Gibson.  I took Tracen to a movie with Lucy, Summer and Ashley.   They got home just in time for Sharon and I to go to a cooking class at Sur La Table.  I already told Luke that when we move to Denver I want to go to a cooking class once a month.  Nothing like cooking a great meal and eating it, and not having to clean up.  The only disappointment was that I couldn't try the dessert because of all the dairy and chocolate... if Rai only knew how committed I am to his happiness.
Our dinner: A turkey soup, pork tacos (that we ate with this green salsa) and a jicama orange salad
Thanksgiving Day was beautiful and we all spent the morning at the Marriot again, but this time in 85 degree weather.

I asked Tracen if he wanted to try swimming without his water wings, like his friends, and he said "No, I don't want to die".

With the passing of a dear friend on Wednesday, we were reminded of just how blessed and lucky we are to have all that we have.  We are so thankful for our knowledge of the gospel and eternal families, and for our good health and the countless blessings. 

 Dinner was followed by some swimming for the kids and then we put them to bed and headed out to do some shopping.  We went with Dave and Ashley and it was fun to just be shopping and hanging out with friends, without kids. 

Friday night we went to Backyard Taco and the Mesa Temple lights (along with everyone else in Arizona) per Erika's suggestions.  We were impressed with both.  Tracen loved to run down the ramps and up and down the stairs and almost caused a lot of falls of unsuspecting adults.

Look at this cheesy smile.  Rai has the funniest little grin, and it must be the Asian in him coming out, because when he smiles like this, his eyes close.

Luke's parents had to head back on Friday, but we stayed until Sunday and took advantage of the swimming and delicious food.  We also finally got pretty much all of our Christmas shopping done.