Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Silver Bells

Merry Christmas Everyone! We have had a great morning so far. Ava, although still too young to understand, has made it so much fun for us this year. Here are a few picture of her in her Christmas PJ's, mostly for Papa and Grandma. The beautiful bells were given to us as a Christmas gift last year from my dad. They are absolutely beautiful. When I took these pictures this morning, I thought they turned out so cute that I should post them so Papa could see his first granddaughter all wrapped up in the bells. Merry Christmas mom and dad.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Merry Christmas to All...

This is our first official family Christmas card. Yes, Josh and I are missing from it...for more than one reason but I think Ava is cute enough to hold her own on this card. Maybe next year we will actually get on top of it and get a family picture taken for the Christmas card. I'll leave you in suspense on that one. Anyway, we hope all of you who read our blog have a very Merry Christmas and that 2008 brings all the joy and happiness you could ever ask for. I know I am looking forward to the fresh start that a new year brings. I plan on making the most of 2008!

Monday, December 17, 2007

A Great Weekend!

This past weekend was such a great weekend. My sister, Kelcie, organized a trip up here to Boise. We were actually successful in convincing my mom to come up too. So we had a little mother daughter weekend. They got up here Friday afternoon. We went out for a really really bad dinner at Cheesecake Factory and then did a little shopping. Josh was nice enough to stay home and watch Ava and Kelcie's new pupppy, Loucie. She is the cutest little thing I have ever seen and so so tiny.

Saturday we had a very early morning. Our ward had a Breakfast with Santa so we were up, showered, and at the church by 8:15 a.m. Ava was so good and kept a happy face on until we were able to get a picture with her and Santa, then she passed out while Grandma was holding her. We did a little shopping later in the day at Costco and Kohl's and then came home and watched the movie Hairspray, then we went to dinner at Red Robin. I got to tell you, I just love that restaurant. We came home and watched the Notebook, my mom had never seen it. It is such a great movie.

Sunday, my mom and Kelcie ended up going home to beat the storm that was supposed to come in and never did, I was pretty sad. They were supposed to leave today. Sunday evening, we headed over to our friends, The Grantham's, house to have a little cake and icecream to celebrate Lindsay's birthday and then both Ava and I called it a night pretty early.

We had such a great weekend. Thanks mom and Kelcie for coming up and making this Christmas season a little nicer. I tend to miss my family a lot around this time of year and it is strange to think that we are all not together for Christmas, but I guess that is life.

Monday, December 10, 2007

We Wish You a Merry Christmas...

Ava was in rare form today... She actually smiled a few times while I was taking some pictures. I was so happy with how well the pictures turned out. Even better though, she took a really long nap and instead of using the time to get my house cleaned or get the sugar cookies made that I need to have done for a little progressive dinner we are having with a few families in our neighborhood, I used the time to scrapbook the pictures. I was so excited to use some of the Christmas scrapbooking supplies I had been downloading. Now, I am feeling very crunched for time to get everything done, what's new. Well, it snowed here today and I am just loving it. A little has actually even stuck, but, now the sun is shining so I doubt it will last. I love this time of year, I am trying to enjoy all the season has to offer, but I know it is going to fly by way too quickly!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

I'm A Big Girl Now!

Ava turned 5 months old yesterday! Can you believe it! She is really starting to grow up. We went out to Red Robin to celebrate last night, which is kind of funny because we went their when she turned 4 months old. I love Red Robin (Whiskey River BBQ Chicken Wrap... so tasty), so maybe we will have to make it a tradition. After dinner, we went to Babies R' Us. I wanted to get Ava an exersaucer for Christmas. She is getting better with her head control but still gets tired quickly so I thought maybe it would help. We put her in one to test it out and she loved it! She could not take her eyes off of the toys and it was so great to see her holding her head up for so long. Now it is going to be hard to wait until Christmas to get it out. We are so lucky to have such a great baby. She is a great sleeper, eater, napper, and the list goes on and on. She has really hit a great stage where she is able to entertain herself and also sit quietly for longer periods of time. She is a breeze to take to restaurants. We are loving her so much.
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Tuesday, December 4, 2007

A Big Ol' Cup Filled with Hoiday Cheer!

Any of you who know me know that I LOVE holidays, especially Christmas. I love making the most out of every holiday. So I thought I would post pictures of my festive cheer. I love to decorate for the holidays, so it was a good thing we moved into a bigger home last year, because I love to buy Christmas decor and now have plenty of space to put it. We bought a new tree last year and I was finally able to buy and make new ornaments for it this year. I am not completely loving it, but I figure there is always next year to make it better. I am pretty proud of the snowflake ornaments I made and think they turned out pretty great. It gets me excited to make more for next year.

My most favorite tradition from my childhood is when my mom would get the Christmas books out. They were only out at Christmas and I loved reading them everyday. Being a teacher, I have quite the collection of Christmas books, including some from my childhood. I was so excited to get them out this year and have already been reading them to Ava, which may sound silly, but she sits right by me and loves to look at the pictures. It is one of many traditions I am very excited to start with my own children.

Sadly, I still do not have outside lights this year, but I made Josh promise that next year we can get them. Instead I have two small trees on either side of my front door, that offer a little Christmas cheer for those driving by. I am so glad that the Christmas season is in full swing. I have been filling my home with Christmas music and Christmas scents. My favorites: Josh Groban Noel, The Forgotten Carols and for scents I am loving the Twisted Peppermint and the Winter oils from Bath and Body Works.

I hope everyone is enjoying the season and making the most of it!

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Our Lovely SLC Weekend...

This past weekend we finally went on the weekend getaway that I had been wanting to go on for quite a while. We had been planning it for almost a month and were so excited to head to Salt Lake for the weekend to see the Christmas lights at Temple Square and enjoy a little time together. Well, it just so happened that Josh's sister Tammy was blessing her adorable son, Donovan, that same weekend and we couldn't have been more pleased to have it fall all on the same weekend. Friday night we headed up to Park City to be treated to the most incredible meal I have ever eaten. My brother, Derek, is a chef at a really nice restaurant named Ghidotti's. He unfortunately had to work that night but was able to spend a quite a bit of time with us anyway. I felt like I was living a fantasy that night. The restaurant was absolutely beautiful and we felt incredibly underdressed. Derek had reserved a quite booth in the back for us that was so nice. We told him that we didn't want to order for ourselves, but that we wanted him to decide our menu for the evening. 8 courses later we left stuffed and happy. I tried things that I never would have imagined I would have. I had raw sashimi tuna that was so good and scallops that were probably my favorite course of the evening, any of you who know me know that I hate seafood, so this was really surprising. We the best homemade foccacia bread with the best oil and balsamic vinegar. We had three amazing appetizers, two incredible pork entrees one with gnocchio and the other with an incredible pasta with homemade noodles. Honestly I cannot even begin to do justice to this meal. If you want to check out the menu you can go to http://www.ghidottis.com/ . It was so nice to see Derek in his element, and he is such an amazing and talented chef and I could really tell that he has a passion for what he is doing. It was so fun to listen to him explain each dish. The words he was using went way over my head, but it was fun to listen to anyway.

The next morning, we met my sister, Kelcie, and her husband, Kevin, for breakfast at our favorite, the Little America Coffee Shop. We have been going there since we were little kids and we always order the same thing. It was nice to sit and talk to them for a little while and I am so excited for her and my mom to come visit in a couple of weeks. Josh will die when he finds out I posted the picture of him holding up the penguine, sorry honey, but I had to get it. Those are the same kid's menus they have been using since we were little kids. The hotel was so nice and decorated so beautifully for Christmas. It was so nice to be able to spend a little time with my brother and sister who I don't get to see very often. The rest of the day was spent shopping and enjoying the winter wonderland we were in. It snowed so much while we were there and we loved every minute of it. Unfortunately, the evening took a major nose dive. After struggling to find a place to eat that did have a ridiculous wait, we ended up at Market Street Grill and what was supposed to be a half hour wait turned into way longer and by the time we were done, Josh's sister called to say Temple Square were going to be turning off the lights in 10 minutes, or so we thought. Thinking that we had missed the lights, we headed back to our hotel very dissapointed, this was something that we both really wanted to do and the original reason for planning this trip in the first place. I was so upset that we weren't able to see them. When we got back to our hotel we found out that Josh's sister was mistaken and that the lights were on until ten instead of nine. By this time it was after ten...

Sunday, we went to the blessing which was absolutely beautiful. Eme our brother-in-law did an amazing job. Baby Donovan is one and a half months old and, as you can see in the pictures, about the same size as our almost 5 month old Ava. I love the picture of Josh and Jared because Josh is bending his knees and Jared is on his tip toes. My favorite picture is definitely the middle one on the bottom. That is Josh and Jared with their 16 year old nephew Jake. Okay, Josh is not short, 6 foot 3 inches, and Jake is even taller. It was nice to see the Leausa family, the kids are growing up so fast and we don't visit them as often as we should. After the blessing we grabbed a bite at the Golden Corral and then headed back to the hotel to pack up and go home. We arrived home completely exhausted from the weekend and feeling like we need a vacation. Hopefully a trip to see the lights is a little more successful next year.
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