Happy New Year!!!

Well, things didn’t get as wild and crazy as they have in the past, mostly because Jenn was sick. I will say that she did do a darn good job of trying to ignore her cold. She even danced with me:

And when I yet again proved that I cannot dance, she moved on to dancing with my boss’s mother:

We did have fun though:

Then I got stalked by this crazy woman:

Jenn went to bed shortly after the stroke of midnight. She made me promise not to let anyone draw on her face with marker.
She did not make me promise to not let someone put their hiney in her face while she slept

But she did wake up and smack the hiney before I could get a picture!!


New Year’s Eve Flashback

The year…2001
The place…The Hotel
The people…Lyz, Chris, Joni, Jenn and I
The times…FREAKING FUN!!!

I have no words for the pictures I am about to post. I also don’t have any idea how I have no pictures of Lyz or Joni???


A special thank you to Karen, the wonderful administrative assistant at The Hotel, for scanning these pictures for me!! They simply wouldn’t have looked as wonderful had a taken a picture of the pictures to post!!

Christmas in Hershey-Part 2

Hi. You may have noticed that I love to take pictures. Can you imagine my disbelief when I realized I forgot to charge the camera when we went back to Hershey? Sigh.

Two whole pictures.
Delaney in the airplane (Orange coat, blue hat)

Chris and Avery on the really big swings (Lyz and Joni had to walk away, they couldn’t watch)

Jenn took a few with her camera phone:

And as we left I got a little teary eyed. This was our last planned Christmas activity. That’s it. Christmas is over.

Booooo. Hissss.

(but, there is always New Year’s Eve to look forward to. My camera is charged. I shall blog tomorrow about the last time we went to a New Year’s party at The Hotel!!)

Merry Christmas!!!

Jenn and I woke up bright and early and headed over to CLAD’s to be there by 6am, just in case Avery decided that this was the year she would wake up before the sun. She kept telling us that she was going to set daddy’s alarm for 4am so that she would be awake before we got there.

I got the honor of writing Santa’s reply to the letter Avery and Delaney left for him. Avery made it hard this year (what do reindeer really eat, how do you get into the house if there isn’t a chimney).

Jenn, Joni and I talked, napped and cooked for a little waiting for CLAD to come down.

Chris joined us (thanks to the smell of coffee brewing and cinnamon rolls baking) and he has no patience so he waited all of five minutes before going and waking Avery up!

And then the fun began!!!

Then, after 2.5 hours of present unwrapping we had breakfast

And Jenn and I went home for a nap!

Then, we went over Joni’s for Christmas dinner and unwrapped even more presents!

We hope you all had a very Merry Christmas!!

Please…can I open just one more”

Christmas in Hershey (the sweetest place on earth)

For Christmas Eve Eve we headed up to HP and had some RR before. (HersheyPark/Red Robin)

It was burrrrr cold! But we were all bundled up so we kept warm and had an awesome time!!

Lyz and Avery in the first car, Jenn and Delaney in the second)


Jenn put poor Delaney in this ride backwards! I wish I had a good picture of the look on D’s face when she realized she was going the wrong way! (I was too busy laughing hysterically to get a good picture)

Avery and Delaney riding the mini pirate ship.

Lyz, Jenn, Avery and I rode the big pirate ship twice in a row. It is just too much fun!! Avery wasn’t sure she wanted to ride it at first, but then loved it so much that when we go back next week (hello free preview plan at HersheyPark) she wants to ride it five times!!

My favorite Christmas book

There are some spoilers contained in this post. Should you want to read the book yourself and not have it spoiled, please go pick up the book. It will take you less than 45 minutes to read it.

It is called The Christmas Box, by Richard Paul Evans. From Amazon:

Self-published in paperback during the Christmas season 1994, Evans’s first novel quickly gained national media attention. Now the cleverly told tale, which the author reputedly wrote for his daughters and which revels in sentimentality, is available in hardcover. The story relates how a young couple, Richard (who narrates) and Keri, accept a position to care for a lonely widow, Mary Parkin, in her spacious Victorian mansion. As Christmas draws near, Mary becomes anxious about Richard’s obsession with success and his failure to make time for his family. She urges him to reconsider his priorities, but he is always too busy to heed her advice. It is only when Mary is on her deathbed and her secret sorrow is revealed through the letter-laden Christmas box of the title that Richard realizes what she has been trying to tell him. The message concerns love, of course, and the strings Evans pulls to vivify it should squeeze sobs from even the stoniest of hearts.

After researching it this morning it appears that I must have read it before it was officially published. Evans self published it in 1994, and that would have been the first Christmas I read it.

I read it for the first time in many years last night. It took on a whole new meaning to me. Thanksgiving of 1995, my Aunt Kari, Jennifer (not my wife) and I went to the Salt Lake City Cemetery to visit the angel statue mentioned in the book. At the end of the book you learn that Mary lost a child, a daughter. She would write her daughter letters every Christmas and take them to Andrea’s grave.

I didn’t know in 1995 that in 2007 I would lose a child of my own and know some of the pain Mary felt. I still have the picture of me laying the white flower in the angel’s arms. Someday I will smarten up and attach the picture to the book so that it doesn’t get lost.

Jenn knew last night when she handed me the book (after I had lost it in the house somehow). She asked me why I was going to torture myself. It wasn’t torture. It was comforting. It made me feel connected. Made me feel like I knew 15 years ago how important the loss of a child is. Before I ever knew the real pain.