Wednesday, December 31, 2008

letting go of another 366

i am certain we are not alone in feeling relief at saying "goodbye" to 2008, and more importantly, hope as we look forward to the new beginning we receive tomorrow.  there are few things that we know the dawn of 2009 will bring for us, other than a new year of taxes and another round of FAFSA filing.  (oh yeah, and the first african-american president--that's is an awesome change we can't take for granted!)  despite the unknown elements that come with a new year, it is always refreshing to have what feels like a new start. 

i am personally overjoyed to say "adios" to 2008.  for me it was the year of the head injury (similar, if you will, to the chinese year of the monkey) and i am glad to see it go.  this past year started, quite literally, with a bang: i woke up the morning of january 1 and whacked my head into the short ceiling of the guest bedroom at rob & becky's.  a month and a half later i slipped on the ice and received my first concussion.  post-concussion, it is apparently important to refrain from further head trauma; however, the world seems to have it out for my cranium so i have found myself sustaining many other injuries.  for instance, i slammed my head in the door of the car when kemi was visiting in moscow (at least i got a black eye for that one).  i have also managed to bash and bang up my head in some way nearly every week, whether it be in the attic-like storage space at mt. bachelor, on someone's bike racks, or in playing with harvey.  and then there was my nasty kayak carnage on granite creek this summer where my chin, nose, and kayak helmet drug along the rocky stream-bed.  

so my head especially looks forward to a new year, one in which it sustains fewer insults.  and now we have 2009, the year of the _____ injury.  guess we'll have to wait and see on that one.


Monday, December 29, 2008

a few photos

we had a great time picking out our christmas tree with rob, becky, and court. we got an awesome one and we are still enjoying it, although i think it is going to come down soon--we are being inundated with needles!
(it was starting to snow when this picture was taken, so my teeth aren't actually glowing like an 
orbitz commercial.  that is a reflective snowflake.)

overall, this year was far more relaxing than the holidays have been in the past.  we did the tour-de-familia again, but given the fact that we live in the area, we didn't feel as much pressure to stay or guilt as we left.  what a nice change.  i sure wish i could put a kabosh on guilt--it plagues me!

we got a few photos of our christmas with papa and the kids, but didn't capture the other parts of our family very well.  anyhow, here is hogan and her dog, simba, trying to decipher the directions for her new toy.
and here is rodney trying to figure out his new binoculars.  papa also got brandon and i a pair, which he hopes to benefit from if we go back to jackson.  he was ill that we were living in elk country this summer and didn't have any binoculars.  now we are set for wildlife viewing (and stalking, should the need arise).
and here is wyatt, showing off one of the many indiana jones toys he received this year.  he is a lego-maniac and he is going to have at least a few days of entertainment putting the sets papa, rod, brandon, and i got him.  
this picture is especially priceless, as it may be the only photo of papa and all his kids to exist.  there may have been a couple from our wedding, but this one sums us up a bit better. 
brandon and i have been busy little bees, working like crazy since christmas.  i am going to be picking up even more shifts at typhoon as they make some changes, so i may be a little behind on posting until the dust settles.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

federal throwbacks

a few friends who didn't have the opportunity to visit us in jackson this past summer have requested to view photos of me in my uniform.  as you can imagine, the forest service green "pickle suit" wasn't exactly flattering.  so here it is, sorry for the excessive delay:
my friend megan here managed to get cute shorts, along with the rest of the women on the crew.  instead, i ended up with the frumpiest shorts ever.  and i do mean ever.  yes mom, i do know how stupid i look.  :)

and in the next photo we are actively working, on a full-fledged river patrol. notice the canoes in background?  they were full of boy scouts.  (note: even if necessary, we weren't going to rescue them.  rescuing one of those boys would be unethical.  i am pretty sure no scout has ever gotten a badge for being rescued by the forest service.  no, you get patches for doing it yourself, like rescuing yourself from an upturned canoe--now that's a badge i would like to see!)  
for some reason this photo wouldn't scan in very well so we look disgustingly tan.  both megan and i were dark, but we weren't  crispy-skinned river rangers.  i promise.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

warm memories and freezing pipes

many years ago i took a risky move in my "pursuit" of brandon.  his car was parked at the mt. bachelor park-and-ride lot while he was up racing.  the little corsica was completely covered in snow so i scraped his windows off, snuck the hide-a-key out of its secret spot, and left a gerber daisy on his seat.  i was nervous all afternoon as i wasn't sure how he would feel about receiving a flower from a girl.  apparently it did not go unnoticed as this past sunday when i got in my car after a long, cold first day at the mountain i found a beautiful bouquet of flowers (including gerber daisies) on my seat.  i totally chocked up and felt overwhelmed with the history those flowers represented.  isn't he wonderful?
last week we went out with rob, becky, and courtney in search of the perfect christmas tree. rob totally scored a great one, which put the pressure on brandon to do so as well.  he found ours a bit further from the road, but indeed it was just right for us!  we got it all decorated on saturday and it has been glowing away in our house ever since.
here is my favorite ornament:
and my other favorite part of our christmas decorations: our nativity.  mom got me this when i was in high school and i look forward to pulling these figurines out of their package each year.  even when we haven't had a tree, we have had this little manger scene.  i especially love the curious look of the lambs.
in other news, we are currently living without cold water in these days of single-digit temps.  that's right, we woke up monday morning to find that our cold water pipe was frozen and it has not relented since then, despite the intense heat of our bathroom.  fortunately we have hot water so we can still shower up.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

gf goodness

here it is folks: my best gluten-free creation thus far!  i can't take too much credit, but i will say i made this loaf a little fancy with rosemary and whole garlic cloves.  mmm.  we loved this bread and managed to put a good dent in it before dinner.  this is going to have to make a few more appearances in the future.

in case you thought we were living painfully dull, boring, unemployed lives, you are wrong.  we are baking our own bread!  :)

snow update: it is on its way and i got a call from my boss that i start sunday--the day the mountain opens!  wohoo for working!  i am going to have a busy schedule, but i think it is going to be full of variety and good people so i should enjoy the hectic pace...
  • fri-mon days: bachelor
  • fri-sat nights: typhoon!
  • thurs morns: volunteers in medicine
  • tues & weds: adventures with brandon & harvey

no snow, much paperwork

it seems like i haven't said much of anything in our recent posts about us or what we are up to.  we are still waiting for snow, but feeling slightly less anxious about this holding period than a couple of weeks ago.  i can't help but be grateful for this time to be home with our puppy.  i feel like a ridiculous dog fanatic for saying that, but i know that this time at home with harvey is making us better owners and him a better member of our world.

in other news, i started my volunteering role at volunteers in medicine.  i am officially a prescription assistance program advocate, which means i weed through the mounds of paperwork that drug companies require in order to participate in their reduced or no fee prescription programs.  i love that i can now call myself an "advocate"--and i love that my work has a direct impact on improving peoples' situation.  i'll post more as i interact with the patients, for today was focused on getting oriented with the companies and forms.  i totally owe my mom for finding out about this place and for getting me connected... thanks mom!

we are off to hunt for christmas trees tomorrow with rob, becky, and courtney, so i will do my best to get photos of the big day.  it may turn out to be a nightmare to have a christmas tree and a puppy occupying our house simultaneously, but he has to learn someday... right?!?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

go on

i couldn't help but like this post secret.  whoever it is: wife, sister, mom, friend, aunt, grandma, girlfriend, best friend, cousin--spend time with her.  

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

continued prayers for healing

two sundays ago, my aunt kris hurt her ankle quite badly when she slipped on the ice on her back porch.  she endured surgery and now has pins and plates in ankle.  uhh.  poor thing.  i posted about it and asked for you all to pray for her to heal quickly and without complications.

now i have another family prayer for healing: my uncle ron (my mom's big brother) endured a stroke this weekend.  he is currently in the hospital and is having trouble with his vision.  it appears that he was spared from any form of paralysis, but he currently can't see out of one of his eyes.  he has five grandkids that he wants to keep playing with and to watch them grow, so please pray that he doesn't encounter any further complications and that healing comes rapidly for his brain.

i have warned my mom that she may need to consider spending next sunday wrapped in bubble wrap, as the past two sundays have involved major medical problems for two of her three siblings.  besides that, it would make all of us laugh to watch her negotiate the world wrapped in bubble wrap.  :)