Monday, March 24, 2014

The New Year and January 2014

For New Years Eve, we were invited to a party at the Reddings with Jason’s high school friends. The Reddings recently built a townhome in Saratoga Springs, so we were all anxious to see all the new developments and decorations. Those who joined us were the Cooks and both Tadje families. The party didn’t start until a little later, and we wanted to stay until midnight, so we brought Charlie with us, along with his pack-n-play. Yes, the plan was to put Charlie down to bed there, and leave after the New Year festivities. This is risky business with a toddler, but it worked! Oh man, we were so relieved. He went down like a champ and stayed down.

We had a great time. We had drinks and lots of goodies. Fun side note, each of us brought a side dish/appetizer to munch on, and three out of the four of us brought cheese balls! What are the odds?!? Luckily, one brought ranch flavored, another brought the sweet peanut butter kind, and another brought shrimp to go with theirs. Too funny, though! When we weren't stuffing ourselves and shooting the breeze, we were playing the celebrity game. That’s right, we couldn’t resist introducing it and playing it with them, too. Luckily, a few had already played before and knew how it worked. Before we knew it, it was midnight! Jason and I brought the sky lantern that I got from Amy from Girls Week. We lit it up and let it fly. There was a slight breeze, and we had a brief moment of panic when it looked like the lantern might head for a house, but it made it safely up into the sky and we watched it fly away. A great end to a great party and a great year, and a great beginning to what is to come!

Trevor, Krista, Rich, Dakota, Kamilla, Alli, Parker, Heidi, Jason, me, Sarah, and Nate

Now, let’s see... we seemed to keep plenty busy in January. We had another Age of Empires game with the Arbons and Phillips cousins. We met up at the Arbons and had another huge battle (and another successful attempt at putting Charlie down while we played, and then took him home when we were done). But, that wasn’t the end of Age of Empires. Tyson introduced Steam to us, which made it possible for us to play together online, without being at the same location. That opened up a whole new world of possibilities. Everybody got a Steam account, and almost every weekend there was talk of another battle. These games take dedication, let me tell you. It is not an odd occurrence for the game to last until 3:00 AM! These games take hours...and if you lose after playing for hours and hours, emotions can run high! But all in all, everyone has fun and vows/threatens to win the next time. Age of Empires really is a strange craving! Jason and I even continued our own private games using Steam when others could not play...usually during the week. Our Netflix account was neglected somewhat, but we couldn’t get enough. I would have dreams about it, and Jason would think about it during the day. It was nuts!

Okay, enough about Age of Empires, and enough with making us look totally pathetic!

With January came a change in church time. We now have 1:00 PM church. I used to love one o’clock church...when I could sleep in. Especially challenging is that is precisely the time that I put Charlie down for a nap. But, we adapt. Charlie was terrible at nursery for the first several weeks! Just an ornery little guy. We still have some trouble here and there, but we have found that he does best if Daddy drops him off. If I drop him off, it takes him a good thirty minutes to relax and venture away from my lap.

Camry started her final semester at BYU. Technically, she could have graduated in December, but she decided to continue for another semester and take a couple of fun classes. She was able to continue her scholarship and continue her employment. For her final semester she is taking two classes: Photography and Dutch Oven Cooking. I am so jealous! How fun is that? She is still only working part time (may I add, at the easiest job ever), so she has some free time during the week. We decided we would get together each week to take advantage of this time. With Valentine’s Day coming up, and tons of cute Pinterest ideas, our first couple “playdates” were craft days. We met up at my mom’s house and had her join in, too. We brought Charlie along, but got most of our crafting done while he was napping. By the time he would wake up, usually Bryan was home from school and was able to play with him.

Craft day #1:

Oh yeah, I got a hair cut....had enough hair to donate to Locks of Love

Mom didn't need Pinterest to create her own craft

Some pics of Charlie during our craft day:

Craft day #2:

Speaking of crafts, I guess I really crafted it up in January. We had another playdate/craft day at Kylie’s house. Stacee and her kids joined in, and we had some yummy lunch, and Kylie helped us make some Valentine’s Day blocks. Love our play dates with these guys!

Also worth mentioning, we had some fun “real dates” with some other friends. Charlie came along to all of these, but we had fun dinner dates with the Johansens (at their home), the Wingers (at Buffalo Wild Wings), and the Pacadas (at Spicy Thai).

Here are a few more pictures from the month:

Branching out - made a Garlic Rosemary Rib Roast

Beauty from our doorstep

Homemade banana ice cream from our new ice cream maker (my Anniversary gift to Jason)

The Auto Show with the Arbons
(The iPad saved us with Charlie)

Visiting Great-Grandma Gruber

The only thing missing from January is Jason's birthday....coming up next.

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