Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas 08

Well, Christmas is finally over and we now prepare for New Years Eve. The decorations are up for a few more days and we love having them up. It was a quiet Christmas and I found my mind and heart back in Las Vegas. But now we begin new traditions, mainly that of hoping to get to Vegas next year.

It finally started to feel like Christmas when GranDee arrived after a 19 hour delay due to snow in Las Vegas. (So I guess Hell has finally frozen over and a snowball really does have a chance!) After sleeping (or not really sleeping) at the LV Airport, she was a real trooper and wanted to meet up with some of our new Denver friends for lunch. We even stopped by Roqué's place and she got to see that and meet Gyrdie, Roqué's sheltie. We finally made it home in time to meet Noël as she got home from school. The next day we went shopping for things for the making of Pumpkin Bread, rolls and things for Christmas Dinner.

On Christmas Eve we met with Mark Stutz and his family in search of the ultimate sledding hill. Even though the temperatures have been below zero, we have a shortage of snow in the Denver area. After driving for about 45 minutes we found a country club in the town of Evergreen that has a bump with snow on it. However the nearby lake was so cold that there were several ice fishermen on it and one section was being prepared for outdoor ice skating. We plan on revisiting that once it opens.
The kids had fun going down the small slope and pulling each other around on the sleds. Aspen didn't like the ride much, but for Noël...anything.

Gyrdie and Aspen are too cold to argue.

Roqué and Gyrdie had fun chasing around in the snow. Gyrdie just loves running and rolling around in the snow.

Noël thought she would try the new sport of snow surfing.

Here are the results.

Austin and Caden are Mark's two youngest kids. They are so much fun and we so enjoy having family around.

Roqué and Austin give walking on the frozen lake a try. If you look in the background you can see some people ice fishing.

Noël wasn't so successful at walking on ice.

On Christmas Eve we had dinner at Mark and Heidi's. How fun to realize their traditions included soup and bread for dinner and English crackers for everyone. Mark's mom, Carole, grew up in England.

Aspen was our little Christmas Elf. She wasn't quite big enough to qualify as an official Reindeer.

Rus showed his Martinelliholic tendencies by polishing off the last bottle.

They adopted our tradition of a talent night and we had a blast. Caden's talent was this bizarre stomach roll. Gross and intriguing at the same time!

We went from youngest to oldest, so Austin was next. He gave a wonderful rendition of Jolly Ole St. Nicholas on the trumpet.

Noël played the theme to Titanic on the piano thingy.

Mariah showed off her dog whispering skills and played a game of patty cake with her dog Lizzie.

Tanner was the up with his talent. That of showing off his deformed feet and ankles. He could give Shiloh a run for his money!!

Mark's talent was singing Row Row Row Your Boat backwards. He actually did it!!

Rus and DJ actually did a talent this year. We sang Baby Its Cold Outside - kinda.

Christmas morning I actually had to go get the Christmas Bell and wake everyone up at 7:30. The only upside of not having little ones in the house. So after breakfast the four of us (Rus, DJ. Noël and Roqué) sat down to open presents. There were actually more than we had anticipated, most of them for Noël.
Roqué showing off her new hat, scarf and gloves she got from Mark and Heidi.
That afternoon Mark and family came over for dinner and games. As you can see, Tanner got a little aggressive from his desperate hunger. Poor Mark just got in the way.

After dinner we played a game where Tanner actually had to trade socks with Caden. EEEWWW

And finally, Rus took the time to set up our webcam. So those of you who have one of these babys can get on line and we can be even more in touch. How I miss all of my family and friends. Honestly, Christmas wasn't the same with out you, but we have your love and that is enough.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Our Temple Day

Even though it happened last August 20, I'm putting up some pics from our Temple Day. We decided to wait after the adoption was final (Dec 13, 2007) until it was something that she wanted. I wonder if the event of leaving the familiar grounds of Las Vegas was her inspiration, but we are so happy she made the leap. Once her decision was made and we were able to get the proper appointments for interviews, things moved very quickly. We were unable to give much notice, but we are so grateful for those who were able to come and joing with us at this special day. We cut things rather close. We had to take a break from moving things out of the house to go up to the temple. The next day we headed up to Colorado. What a whirlwind! We were so grateful for all of the support and help. Even four of Christian's dear friends were able to come. I was so impressed that these boys would take the time from their busy social circle. It has been so great having Noël in our family and I am eternally grateful for her. Please enjoy our pictures and thanks to all of you who are part of our circle. The pictures were taken by Renee Stewart who is just starting her photography business. I highly recommend her. Thanks Renee!!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My first blog

To those who care... this is my first attempt to do this blogspot thing. We are settling in to Littleton, CO after 20 years of living in Las Vegas. We were sad to leave all of our friends and our family in Las Vegas but interested in the adventure of a new place. Our daughter, Roqué, moved to Denver January of 08 and now lives about a half hour away. Rus has a nephew, Mark Stutz, who lives just 3 miles away with his wife and 4 kids. His daughter, Mariah is almost a year older than Noël and they get along very well. Mark is a Bishop in another ward in our stake and it has been a real blessing to have his family here. Noël is doing so very well here. Her grades are up and she is being more responsible for her school work. She entered school 3 weeks after the fall start and came home the first day with an application to run for school secretary. Out of 4 candidates, she came second by only 15 votes. Not bad for the new kid. She is active in the student senate and helps plan all of the school activities. She is also on the recycling committee. Just yesterday she received a certificate for being on honor roll at a school assembly. We are so proud. On Sunday she was set apart as the 1st counselor in the Beehive Presidency.
Thanksgiving was just absolutely wonderful with Candice and her family along with Shiloh and Roman making the trek to Colorado. It was one of the best weeks I've had in years. The bright spot for Christmas is that my Mom will be here, but we will sorely miss the hoards of family and friends on Christmas Eve.
I think I've almost finished shopping. Just one more gift and then getting everything mailed out. I'm trying to find all of my addresses for Christmas Cards since I can't find my old address book. It is still somewhere in a box. We are still looking for about 3 boxes of Christmas decorations too. Ah, the joys of moving.