Sunday, November 29, 2009

Santa and Tree Lighting

Saturday the outdoor mall by our house was having their annual tree lighting. We had a great time last year so we met a few friends and braved the cold weather. It's a really fun event, and the kids love it. This year it wasn't too cold outside and they had much more stuff going on. They had lots of Christmas characters there for the kids to meet and take pictures with. Hollyn's favorite was Frosty the Snowman, the Grinch scared Hollyn a little and Paige was terrified of him. They also had cookies and apple cider to snack on and a really great a cappella group singing Christmas songs. After the finished singing Santa showed up on the roof of the mall. The kids were so excited! They had the fire department save Santa with their big latter from the fire truck. I don't think they thought it would take as long as it did, but the kids loved it. When Santa finally made it to the ground he came up to the front of the Christmas tree and turned on the enormous on switch to turn on the lights on the Christmas tree. The tree was beautiful and enormous.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving Fun

This year we hosted Thanksgiving at our house. We had our friends the Koberleins and the Birds over for the best Thanksgiving ever. The food was amazing. Everyone brought delicious sides and the turkey, well it was the best turkey I have ever tasted. It was crispy on the outside and tender and juicey on the inside. The meat was literally falling off of the bones. I think that I have finally figured out how to cook a turkey. The secret is the first brine the turkey and then to cook it in a pan without the bag with lots of juices. I think our turkey, a 22 pounder, may have had way to much juice. We had a minor little grease fire in our oven for a few seconds that set off our fire alarm and covered our kitchen in smoke. After cleaning out the oven and opening all of the windows and doors, we solved the problem and were able to finish cooking the turkey and dressing. So, we are definitely thankful that we didn't have to call the fire department on Thanksgiving.

Hollyn was so excited to have all the kids over to play. She and Makayla barely came out of the play room to eat. The kids had a great time playing and running around the big grass field behind our house. I know I have been talking about all of our last things here in Lincoln, but I am sad this will be our last Thanksgiving. It will be great to spend the time with family next year, but it has been fun learning to cook a turkey and all of the fixings and spend time with amazing friends. The weather was also fantastic, no snow!
I wanted to do my top ten things I'm grateful for, in no particular order:
1. My family. (My two healthy, fun, beautiful girls, and my handsome hard working husband who has been able to juggle law school and a family)
2. Our law school experience. It has had it's ups and downs, but overall it has been an amazing experience and we have become better people because of it.
3. The gospel. Where would I be without the gospel? Everything I have in my life is because my faith and beliefs in the gospel.
4. Lincoln, Nebraska. You will always hold a special place in my heart.
5. Friends new and old you know who you are. Thanks for your love and friendship. I have the best friends a girl could ask for.
6. The gym. I know it may seem silly, but I love exercising. It keeps me balanced and happy.
7. Extended family. Parents, grandparents, brothers, brother and sister-in laws, nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts, uncles. We miss living so close to family.
8. A home with a garage. When you live in a freezing cold place like Nebraska an AZ girl can't survive without one. Okay maybe just not this whimpy AZ girl.
9. My education. I have not only been able to teach school, but I have also been able to enrich my children with my education degree.
10. Modern technology. I love being able to keep in touch with family through emails, blogging, etc. and to keep memories through digital cameras and video recorders.

I was also able to get all of my Christmas shopping at the black Friday sales, and I was finished before 6:30am. I'm just glad there is only one black Friday a year.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Trip to Omaha and Gingerbread houses

Saturday Dan came home from studying for the day and decided we should make a quick trip to Omaha. The Visitor Center at the Winter Quarters Temple was having their annual gingerbread house displays so it was the perfect time to go. We hit the Cheese Cake Factory on the way had split the delicious Chicken Madera. It was delicious and well worth the drive. We then took the girls to the Visitors Center to check out this years gingerbread displays. Our favorites were Noah's Ark and the Temple. The girls had a blast looking at the different designs and playing in the little gingerbread house. It was kind of sad to think that this is our last year doing this. It has become a fun tradition for our family. I'm not sure who the random guy is in the picture with Dan and the girls. I was waiting forever for him to move and when he finally did it was right behind them and in the picture. Thanks buddy, whoever your are.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The pictures you won't see on our Christmas card

My good friend Becky took our Christmas pictures for the third year in a row . It was kind of sad because this will be our last year taking our Christmas pictures here in Lincoln. We thought it was only fit to take the pictures on campus east campus where the law school is located. Becky does a fantastic job, but as you all know you cannot control kids, and mine are no exception. These are just a few of the shots that will not be appearing on our Christmas card this year. Let's just say that between the two of my girls they made it fun for Becky to get a good picture. Hollyn was dying to roll around in the grass and leaves with her friend Olivia and Paige, well Paige was just being Paige.

Here are a few fun action shots. Thanks again Becky.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A week of Halloween!

This year the girls were fairies. Hollyn called herself a Hollyn fairy and Paige a Paige fairy. I guess that means that they were their own fairy. I don't know about you, but for us it seems as though Halloween is not just one day, but a whole week. This was our Halloween week. The Saturday before we had a friends Halloween party. It was fun to get together and have yummy food and fun. Tuesday we took the girls to our doctor's office for their annual trick or treating fun. They do a great job keeping our kids healthy and giving them candy?!? They don't really seem to go together but the girls had a blast showing off their costumes and seeing all the ladies and their doctor dressed up. They were even suppose to have a helicopter fly in and land in the parking lot, but we weren't able to stay long enough to see it. On Wednesday Hollyn was able to wear her costume to school and boy was she excited. Thursday we had a few girls over for playgroup and to decorate sugar cookies. The girls loved frosting the cookies and then seeing how many sprinkles they could fit on one cookie. The cookies were delicious and I'm pretty sure I ate a dozen more than a should have. That night we had our ward party, chili, trunk or treating and games. I really enjoy our ward here. The activity committee does a great job, and I love the people in our ward. There are some many kids both of the girls' ages. Paige's favorite part was running around the cultural hall and then falling down and laying on her back when she got tired. Hollyn's favorite part was the musical chairs. Friday we went to Dan's law school to trick or treat around the school. It was our first time doing this, but both of the girls really had fun. Paige loved to get the candy and put it in her bucket and then sign and say thank you. All of the ladies got a kick out of Hollyn and Paige matching and such a little girl walking and talking. Paige really look a lot younger than she is because people are always asking how old she is. The poor kid only weighs 16 lbs, so I guess she does look like a 9 month old. After we went to the law school we headed over to the children's museum for trick or treating their. The children museum here in Lincoln does a great job on Halloween. Two of the floors are decorated and at each station the people their are dressed up and either giving out candy or little toys. At the end you can go to the bottom floor and let the kids play. Both Hollyn and Paige loved the building area and the prairie dog town.
Finally, on Saturday, Halloween, we went trick or treating at some of our neighbors house and to the mall by our house and trick or treated around the stores there. Over all we had a great Halloween and way too much candy. I'm pretty sure the tooth fairy will be coming to our house to exchange a prize for candy, and I am definitely off sugar for the next month or so.

I almost forgot. On our way home from the gym on Halloween we had to stop for thousands of birds that were flying by our car. I was afraid I would either run them over or they would fly into our car. And just to prove I wasn't exaggerating when we got home this was what was waiting for us on our roof. It was a little spooky. I have no idea what was going on with all of the birds or where they came from.