Saturday, December 29, 2007

Cheery Saturday

We spent this afternoon and evening with Mike & Kristin (you may remember them from previous posts) and Paul & Cena (also dear friends from our WWU days). After the smallest, healthiest, most low-sugar dinner you can imagine at The Cheesecake Factory, we wandered through the light display at the botanical gardens, and then came back here to thaw our poor, frozen selves and to play games. I love nights like this. It's been one of my favorite parts of this holiday season :)

Now it's our turn to visit Paul & Cena. California, here we come!

We need a new camera. This out-of-focus junk...
is not my fault! Blargghhhhh.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas again :)

We had a very cozy, quiet Christmas this year, just the two of us. We opened a few presents, and we never once changed out of our pajamas. We ate a lot of ham, and we will be eating a lot of ham, possibly for the next two weeks, because Safeway is not inclined to sell a ham for just two people.

Please meet my husband, the monk :) Is this a great present, or what?! Functional and stylish! When Jan is at the computer, he's always wrapping himself in these elaborate blanket get-ups to keep warm and toasty. But then, if needs to get up, he has to take it all apart and then put it back together, and I decided it was a great, big hassle. And I like to minimize the hassles he must endure, if possible. On a fluke I found this blanket that zips and snaps into what you see here. He's been wearing it all the live long day, and he is happy, and so, I am happy :)

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas

Luke 2:1-20
And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, into the city of of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came up on them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you: Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. Adn all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.
But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.
And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had seen, as it was told unto them.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Fun friends and gingerbread

We were graciously invited by our friends Caleb & Jen to build gingerbread nativities with their family last night. Here's a glimpse...
This belongs to Ocean, who will turn 5 next week. He likes a lot of embellishment, it seems.
This is Jaguar's creation. She wasn't as heavy-handed with the candy as her brother, as you can see (although Jen said she was eating it hand over fist, which could explain the absence of so much decoration). What I love most is the cookie next to the nativity with the tiny nibble out of it.
And then the grown-ups (I use that word very loosely) took a turn.

Sugar coma!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Darcy the Dragon

We listened to quite a few records growing up. (I feel sorry for little ones these days who only have CDs.) My dad was a big fan of Roger Whittaker (it's OK if you don't know who in the world he is), and I think we had a few of his regular records as well as a Christmas album. One of our most beloved holiday songs EVER was on that Christmas album, and last year Jan Michael & I found a Roger W. Christmas CD in the cheap-o bin at Fred Meyer, and I was sooooooo excited because, finally, after years & years, I would be able to listen to it again and prance & frolick around, just like I did when I was a little gal. But alas. The song had not been included. (No wonder it was in the $6.99 section.)

HOWEVER. This morning I am delighted, through the wonder of YouTube, to present what is certainly going to become your very favorite holiday song (even though Jan Michael is not convinced of this). I myself have listened to it twice already this morning :)

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Weekend report

We wanted to help Brent with the house on Saturday. We really did. We got up early, bundled and bundled and bundled up, fastened our tool belts, and off we went. But we hadn't been there more than 15 minutes when Jan began coughing and hacking. He's been quite sick, if you remember, and we decided it would be bad news if he stayed outside roofing a house and caught the bug all over again. So we waved good-bye and abandoned Brent. We both felt awful [and we still feel awful - sorry, Brent-o :( ], but we promised to be back in early January. We spent a very enjoyable morning with Jan's parents instead, and then all afternoon we stuffed ourselves silly at a Christmas party with our friends from WWU.

"Stop taking pictures of me, woman!"
Derek is a cutting and gluing expert!
:) :)
I decided I can't keep cropping myself out of pictures just because I look like a doofus, especially when Jan Michael looks so darn handsome, so here we are. I plead not having taken a shower and wearing my stupid house-building get-up as the reason for the doof-dom.

And now, on to the Christmas party....
This is a ridiculous picture, because obviously you can't see many faces, but I post it to show the annual boys-only gift exchange, which involves the purchase and trading of the very same video game. There's a lot of "Oh, it's just what I wanted" and that kind of posturing. I think sometime this week they'll all be playing together online.
This is very reminiscent of the thousands of hours we spend in the dorms together....
with some very important additions :)
This one makes me laugh because Mike seems to be the one enjoying the story most, while little Gabe appears to be watching somebody else play a video game.
I don't know about anyone else, but I ate continuously from approximately 1:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
1. Mike & Kristin are very cute, don't you agree?
2. They are very gracious hosts. They're always inviting everyone over, and they don't mind when Jan Michael and I accidentally show up an hour early.
3. Kristin is a fabulous-o cook. She made us ham and corn pudding and fancy gingerbread with candied apples and lots of other Christmas desserts.
4. They are leaving at the end of January to spend AN ENTIRE MONTH galavanting around Europe. I'm so excited for them, I can hardly stand it.
I'm mad that Jenny's face is hidden, but Todd is so happy that I'm posting this anyway.
This is what Mike used to look like when we were steeling ourselves for physiological psychology with Professor Prim. When we see you on the 29th, Mike, I'll expect you to draw a diagram of the sodium-potassium pump.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

No more tomato soup!

I'm sick to death of looking at that tomato soup mess every time I open up our blog, so I'm posting this picture of us from last December. It's old, but it's one of my favorites. We don't have any recent pictures, even though my parents came last weekend for an early Christmas celebration and we had a lovely time.

Also, isn't this the best time of year for mail? I love trotting out to the mailbox to see if any new Christmas cards have been delivered. I like to tape them on the wall below our bulletin board in the kitchen. So far we have 5. And 1 Christmas letter. I love those Christmas letters. I've heard so many people scoff and talk about how dumb they are, but I think they're neat. It's fun to hear about a year in the lives of our family and friends. And it's wonderful to know they care about us enough to include us. Anyway, it's just another thing I enjoy about the holidays :)

Monday, December 10, 2007


Tomato Soup Stove Art. We'll start the bidding at $500.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

MUSH ALERT. You've been warned.

My husband is sick. With a terrible, monstrous head cold. He hasn't gone to work once all week. He's not sleeping hardly at all, either, because he can't breathe. And every day when I've returned home from work or the store or meeting, he says "Sweetie. Welcome home" in a I-have-a-scratchy-sore-throat-and-a-runny-nose-and-a-cough sort of voice instead of his usual boisterous tone. But in spite of his malady, what did he do on Tuesday morning, after another long night of tossing and turning and sneezing? He made me breakfast. It's true. There I was, stumbling down the stairs, hair askew and with sleepy eyes, and there he was in front of the frying pan. And he is light years ahead of me in the flipping of the eggs department, believe me. I always take care of him, he said, and he wanted to take care of me.

Sigh. And swoon.

P.S. And I do not want to hear any rubbish from any hecklers about how, if he's really so sick, he shouldn't be messing around with food. THERE WILL BE NO HECKLING!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Warm hearts

In response to the incredible, devastating flooding in Western Washington this week - most especially in Southwest WA and on the coast - a Seattle radio station held a supply drive at IKEA today. People were encouraged to bring food, clothing, and any other neccessities the flood victims need, and the goal was to fill a semi with the donations. The outpouring from people all over the region was so overwhelming that SEVEN semis were filled, over $53,000 in cash was given, and $5000 in gift cards were contributed. The radio station had to close the collection site two-and-a-half hours early because there just wasn't any more room to hold the all of the donations.

Hearing about this was good for my heart, and so I share it with you :)

Saturday, December 01, 2007

We are the funnest family. It's true.

Today we celebrated the Pearson Family (Only-A-Little-Bit-Belated) 2007 Thanksgiving Hoo-Haw, and it was fantastic. I bet you're wondering who was there, and let me just tell you. There was our Dad & Mom, Brent & Danny & Derek & Caleb, Derek & Sara, Grandma Ruth, Grandma Ruth's sister-in-law Paulette, Paulette's daughter Martha, Martha's boyfriend Bruce, and Martha's kids Paula & Dylan. I think lots of people feel this way about their own families, but I really think I have the the best one in the universe. And I don't think it was an accident that I married into it, either. But that's a discussion for another time.
Jan, Brent & I began the day with a few hours work on the house. It was so cold, I could hardly breathe. And I was the one that was sent into one of the heated houses to sand and prime for painting! J & B had to work outside, in temperatures akin to the Antarctic, framing. It began to snow while we were there, and it didn't stop, and you'll see what I mean in a few pictures.
Derek was a little reluctant to smile for the camera, so Uncle Jan remedied the situation by chewing on his arm.
And what can I say about this one that would do it justice? (That's dried mango that D-ster is eating, by the way. With a fork.)
I think I'll frame this one.
This is the sort of greeting Grandma Ruth gets when she comes into a room :)
Happy boy :)
We played a very raucous game of Pictionary. What you're witnessing here is Dylan thinking, "I can't BELIEVE you numskulls didn't guess what I was drawing. MAN."
There always has to be a picture of these three. It's the law.
And I always jump at the chance to get a picture with my sistas, too. But the picture of me was dumb, so I cropped myself out, and now you have the pleasure of gazing at these two lovely ladies.
Family love!
It's fortunate for all of you that I keep a tight reign on the mush when I post pictures of Jan Michael. Because I have lots of mushy things to say, believe me.
Here is one of the 3 trillion reasons that Derek is indisputably awesome: He hopped into my lap, opened the little New Testament/Psalms book that Danny found for him, and preceded to serenade us with "Baby Beluga" and other hits popular with the younger set.
Precious Dad & Mom!

Prologue: We arrived home safely, despite intermittent snow flurries all along the freeway, a few slips and slides coming into town, and one instance of getting stuck on the big hill that leads to our house. There must be 3 inches of snow outside right now - a very cozy way to end a very happy day.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

LV: Wednesday continued, plus the finale

This is the Venetian, where you can sail lazily along in a gondola on a river that runs through the hotel. The drawback to this, as we saw it, is that about 500 people stand around watching you float by, and we like to fly below the radar most of the time, so we just watched from far away. But I love the color of the water, and the idea that we might do the real thing someday :)
This man had the biggest of of the big, booming voices. We didn't need a ride in the gondola to be serenaded - we could hear him just fine from up above!
This is the Conservatory at the Bellagio. The plants and flowers are changed seasonally. Mike & Amanda thought we would enjoy it, and they were spot on :)

Oh, the fountain show at the Bellagio. I can't even begin to tell you how much I loved it. I would watch it again & again & again and not ever grow tired of it. Jan Michael gives it a solid two thumbs up, too. It was right at the top of the list of very best things we saw on our trip. If you are ever in Las Vegas, you must see it. That's an order. You can stand there with the love of your life and watch the water and listen to the music and you will be glad.
We found this at Treasure Island while we were waiting for seating to begin for Mystere. It made us think of our bike-lovin' brother :)
The most important thing on our agenda for Thursday, our last day in the city that never sleeps, was to watch the fountain show at the Bellagio again. We had planned to see it the night before after Mystere, because if the daytime show is fabulous, the nighttime show must be spectacular, but we were pooped and adjourned to our room like a couple of old-timers. We also thought we'd like to waltz around Paris & New York, New York for a little bit, too. Our plans took a different course, however, due to an unfortunate bout of gastro-intestinal trouble. How thankful I am to have a husband that will seek out a drug store in a strange town in search of Gas-Ex. Anyhoo, by the time we arrived at the strip (several hours after we'd planned), we didn't have much interest anymore in Paris & NY NY and we discovered that our attractions guide listed an incorrect time for the fountain show. So we settled, instead, for pictures in front of what would later be the fountain show. And then we strolled away, hand in hand, boarded our plane, and flew off into the sunset, happily ever after.