Sunday, November 25, 2012

Holidays at our House

For Halloween we carved pumpkins, had a Halloween party with the extended C. family, and Jake and Dan went trick-or-treating.  Jake went with his friend Brennan, and Dan went with his Mom.  Dan was a bit disappointed not to have a friend too, but he loved the candy!
Jake, Connor, Kayli, and Dan carving their pumpkins

The jack-o-lanterns.  Connor's is on the left and is way more awesome than you can tell.  The candle didn't glow properly for the first little while.  Jake's is next, then Dan's and Kayli's (ghosts if you can't see at this angle).

Kayli, Connor, and their Pumpkin pals.

Dan was a bat, NOT Batman.

Jake is a shadow.
Kayli and Connor were not left out.  They each went and spent time with friends and had a fabulous time.

The day before Thanksgiving Derek and Connor put in a new office floor.  I painted the day before, and finished up that morning before they could get to work.  We think it turned out well.
Connor helped all day without complaining.  Derek said he couldn't have put the floor in without him.

Derek and Connor finishing up the last part -- the closet.  It was hard.

The floor and the two greens.  The bright green is only on the window wall.

Dan posing so there is someone cute to look at on the new floor.

The guest room where Quinn and Tonya came to stay the very next day.  We cleaned it up some but they had to sleep by the flooring for the guest room and the master bedroom!
Saturday afternoon at around snack time (3:00p.m. for those who don't know when snack time is "supposed" to be) we decorated the Christmas tree, and today after church we made the rest of the house look festive.  We love Christmas!
Derek by the piles of ornaments that still hadn't been put on the tree.  We have a lot of ornaments, but not quite enough, because Dan doesn't have as many as everyone else!

This was taken in a hurry so I could get Kayli before she decided to hide her pretty face!
It sure is odd to have all of these festivities without our Trisa and Tia here!  We miss them all of the time.  That being said, we have had happy holidays so far, and are hoping they will make Christmas the best of all by being here with us.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Brandon and his family at the beach, complements of Laura's facebook page

Adria and Brandon

Brandon and Laura and family at Bryce Canyon

Brandon is a musical, athletic, family man, who is a licensed social worker.  My kids said that he is "fun".  (Shocker since they say that about all of the uncles.)  Connor also said something about how good he is at three pointers in basketball.  Perhaps a small discussion ensued over whether Uncle B.D., or his brother D.B. (Derek) is the better three point shooter.  Since D.B. is Connor's Dad and lives here, Connor might have been persuaded to say that his Dad is better -- but I can't really recall.  Maybe they can have a three point contest at the next reunion.

Brandon plays the violin, sings, and plays the piano.  Once, at a family reunion, he sang "Big Rock Candy Mountain" while his wife Laura played the cello.  That was fun for me.  He has often sung with his brothers, brothers-in-law, and Dad for special occasions.  Usually, they are singing "Brightly Beams Our Father's Mercy" and I could listen to it over and over again and always enjoy it.

Brandon plays golf, basketball, and mens softball.  I expect that he played baseball during his growing up years.  I'm sure he plays other sports too if the opportunity arises.  He did manage to crack a rib playing basketball not too long ago.  He had to stop playing for a while, which I'm sure was sad.  He has been known to do yoga with his wife on occasion but, while it helped his flexibility, I don't think that it made him able to sit cross legged without his knees pointing at the ceiling (which seems to be the norm for the brothers).  Maybe I'm wrong though.

Brandon's work as a social worker has ended up being useful in the extended family many times.  He has given presentations / lessons at family reunions, and helped those of us who called when we had issues in our own families that we needed some advice and help on.  What a benefit!  He is good at listening, and giving information that is helpful. 

Brandon is a family man first.  He loves his wife and his four children and he goes on lots of adventures with them.  They hike, and camp, and find interesting things to visit every time they have a chance.  They bring their family to the Homestead for lots of family events, even though it takes a couple of hours to get here.  I almost always know when they are leaving to head home because Brandon takes the time to walk around, touch everyone on the shoulder, look them in the eye, and say "Bu Bye". 

Brandon served a mission when he was nineteen.  He went out east to the New Hampshire, Manchester mission.  He still serves faithfully in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, but most importantly he serves and helps his family to learn about Jesus.  Brandon is a good brother-in-law and is good at letting each family member know that we are important to him.

Happy Birthday to Uncle B.D.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Ladies Dan

Dan was drawing a picture of a castle on our little white board today.  He drew a boy on the castle wall who was smiling.  Dan asked me if I knew why the boy was smiling.  When I said no, Dan said, "Because he has two princesses!" 

Lest you think he's a romantic little character, he told his Dad, "Yeah, he (the boy) threw one princess in one tower and one in the other tower!" 

And, so you don't think he's too cruel, he told me that the boy was protecting them.  Maybe they are safest in opposite towers. 

Dan is good for a smile.