Friday, December 31, 2010

What Are You Doing New Years Eve?

It is 4:45 on New Years Eve. The Temperature has risen several degrees since 8:00 this morning. It is now -26 Celsius which is -15 Fahrenheit. This morning the mercury was down below the little 3 on the right. It will soon be dark, the temperature will be dropping and Darryl and I will be staying put for New Years Eve.
I thought I would take a few pictures of the last sunset of the year.
Farewell 2010.

I pray that the peace that surrounds me this evening will be with each of you through the New Year,

May your visions and dreams for 2011 always take your toward the light,

May the roads and pathways you travel always be smooth,

..and full of fun and adventure.

May your home be full of sunshine and happiness...

May the new year fill you with warmth...

and safety and love.

May beauty follow you wherever you roam,

And may God bless you and your family with good health and
prosperity in all your endeavors.

Happy New Year !!!

And in 2011 may your outdoor thermometer never dip below -30 Celsius. That's what the little 3 is and that is where the mercury was this morning.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time...

Look Grandma!!!! I am an Elf!

Our Christmas celebrations started on Thursday as we awaited the arrival of Hillary, Jake and Ricky. Gideon decided he wanted to be buddy the Elf so he stole the pants off of my little elf guy. He tried to steal the shirt too but was unsuccessful as it was sewn to the elf's head.
I woke up early to start the Christmas Eve baking. I even made authentic french toast for breakfast. After that the goody trays were assembled and wrapped to take to the neighbors.

Starting at 5:00 in the evening it was time to celebrate my birthday. There were so many candles it took 4 of us to light them all!

Gideon is a little intimidated by the inferno on the cake.

He helped me blow out my candles.

Cindy, you are 54 years old. What are you going to do now?
I am going to Disney World!!
(Thanks Cami, Jacob, Cali and Travis!)

A poster of my 11 grandchildren!

Practicing our songs for Christmas caroling!

Hillary practices with little Parker.

Ross and Logan give us some instrumental help.

Oh look at how Travis, Kelly, Jesse and Cathy practice.

At this point Ricky is probably thinking.... "The people are crazy. We don't do this in Venezuela!"

After Christmas Caroling we came back to the house and opened Secret Santa gifts. Gideon loved his hat from Aunt Jesse and Uncle Kelly.

"Whoa!!!" says Cali, "an unexpected gift I didn't wrap for myself!"

Ready for Bed and the tree that was swallowed by Christmas Gifts!

Ricky with the Kiddos!

Best we can figure, Santa showed up just before midnight.

He filled all nine stockings with candy, toys, socks, movies and an orange!

We moved the stockings away from the fireplace in case we got chocolate. We didn't want it to melt.

The Storers spent the night and we put there stockings on the couch.

The Christmas Haul for 4 families!

Our beautiful Christmas morning. As I looked at the pictures I tried to figure out why the date says Christmas Eve. I just realized there is a clock on the camera and mine was 12 hours behind. Believe me, it was Christmas Day.

Grandpa finds out he doesn't fit in the Toy Story Tent.

But Gideon fits just fine!

Cali's present wrapped in phone book paper and Blue Masking tape. Hillary's work of art.

Parker shares her new toy with Toby the dog.

Grandma!!!! Look at all of that stuff!!

Cowboy Ricky!

Gideon helps dad open his present.

Then he opens his own.

The aftermath.

We decided to wait until Sunday afternoon for our Traditional Christmas Dinner...

So Christmas afternoon we fixed up a snake (oops, it should be snack) table and played games.

Day after Christmas Dinner....

And finally.... a good nights sleep under our new duvet and duvet cover. And can I just say that it is like sleeping under a warm cloud!
I hope you had a Wonderful Christmas too!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Memory

I have been thinking about posting some pictures of Christmases past but then realized I will needs Jake's help to get the scanner going on this computer. Until then I have 2 fun memories I would like to share.

Christmas 1981 - Cami and the Doll House - Santa and his big elf Bill had spent days working on a doll house for little Cali, Shiloh and baby Cami. On Christmas Day the girls were delighted when they woke up and found this huge house for their Barbies and Strawberry Shortcake dolls. Later that morning while I was in the kitchen I heard Cami crying and giggles coming from the girls. Cami was 7 months old and had crawled in the back side of the play house and had tried to go out the door. Her head was stuck! It was so funny. I am pretty sure I have a picture of that. OH.... and we just turned her shoulders sideways and she came out the door just fine. That kind of gives you an Idea of how big that house was.

Christmas 1995 or 1996 - The Perfect Christmas Tree. - If memory serves me correctly I think Jesse, Skye, Cody and Hillary went out and chopped down (to the horror of some of their big sisters) an 8 ft. tall Charlie Brown Tree. I believe it was Skye (always so tenderhearted) who thought the tree was lonely and the other trees would make fun of it. The trunk was about 2 inches in diameter, the gaps between branches were 12 - 18 inches and the needles were long, soft and sparse. We decorated the tree by putting stuffed toys and Santas hugging the trunk, popcorn strings, Cranberry strings and homemade ornaments. I also remember how quiet and peaceful Christmas time was with the oil lamps burning and the Garber's coming over and singing the night away with Linda at the piano and Jimmy on his guitar. And it seemed like every other day we would come home to a package on the porch, from a Secret Santa, full of toys, clothes and even groceries.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


For my girls who live far away. Yes, mom and dad did take the time to decorate this year.
The large Santa is a bank that I gave my Grandpa Eppert for Christmas when I was 7 or 8 yrs. old.
And Hillary.... I found your stocking!
The atrium is a little sparse of plant life right now, but the garland and the pointsettias help.

The ceramic pieces of this Nativity were made by my Grandmother Ruth Fiege and given to my parents in 1964. About 4 yrs ago I found the perfect stable for it.
I have lost one piece to this beautiful set, the angel which would attach to the top of the original stable that my mother had made for this Creche.
The balcony with it's customary Chili lights and garland. The Grinch is only inflated when Gideon or other children are here. (see previous post)
The stairway....
Hmmmm..... I guess I forgot to include pictures of the window seat railing and the Mexicali tree in the window. I will do it next week. They are up, but I am not going to undo this whole post just to add them. :-)
The dining room table with Grandma Peggy's table runner.
The little village plus 2 nativities I brought home from Mexico.

More of my collection of Nativites.
The figurines in the Nativity set in the very back I found in 1988 in a box that was labled "Lofstroms first Nativity set". The box was stuffed in a wrinkled paper bag that I almost threw away without looking inside. It was full of pictures from the 1930's and this Nativity.
What a treasure!
My little caroler musical doll....

I know this looks like an elf, but he is really guarding the presents. Gideon grabs him by the top of his had and drags him around the house talking to him.
My snowman village
My collection of pillow covers and my music boxes. So far Gideon has been too busy with the stuffed Santas in the cradle and the Elf Guard to bother with the musical pieces. I am sure that will change.
And Finally .... The tree.
I know, it's not our normal 23' tree but there is a reason for that. A day or two after Thanksgiving I asked Darryl if he was going to cut down a big tree for the courtyard. He looked at me like I was crazy (in his defense the temperature outside was in the single digits with below -0 windchills and 18" of snow on the ground). I said to him "That's not gonna fly next year". To Which he smiled and replied, "Next year he can go out in the cold and cut down the tree!"
Yes... and he (Cody) will be here to help decorate the top of it!
We are agreed.
Small tree, easy to handle and decorate this year and next year Big Tree for Cody to Cut, haul, and decorate!