Sunday, December 28, 2008

Father/Son Tennis

On Saturday, Jared and Blake played in a Father-Son tennis tournament. Some young dads were playing with their really young children, which was fun to watch. They had 5 different divisions, they all played 3 matches. Brian was going to play with Blake in another division, but he had to work.

I gave Blake these white shorts for Christmas, so he and Jared were even dressed alike.

They lost their first two matches and won the third. They were glad to get a win especially because they were playing a "mother - son" combo. I guess the Dad couldn't make it and the mom stepped in. Blake and Jared would have hated losing to her!

Friday, December 26, 2008


We had a great Christmas Day!! The best part was the phone call with Randy! He sounds good and we had a great visit! We are able to do a three way call with Cindy, it's almost like we are all together.

We use the speaker phone and sit around the table to talk!

When you have a child serving a mission, these phone calls are the best present you can ever get!

Brian had worked all night. He and Celia got here 5 minutes before the phone call. Brian lasted through the first 1/2 hour, but could not stay awake for the last 20 minutes.

After the phone call, we opened presents. Brian could barely wake up enough to see what he was getting.

Cindy sent us these cool tiles with these sayings; "A mother holds her children's hands for a while...their hearts forever" and "Dad a son's first hero a daughter's first love." Cool, huh?

Jared knew he wasn't going to get much for Christmas from us, because the snow machines were a big part of his presents, so he asked Cindy for what he wanted! A really nice back pack to wear when he's snowmachining. It is perfect.

Brian finally woke up enough to look at his presents. This is a family calendar I made for them. I made one for us and Cindy, too. They have become a tradition that I almost forgot about this year, I remembered in the nick of time to get it printed and bound and mailed to Cindy!

Brian did things backward this year. After we opened presents, he went to bed for awhile, then got up to eat dinner. He ate in his pjs, then played games in them too. We got two new games for the Wii, in this picture, they are playing Table Tennis.

We also got more controllers, now they are playing NBA Basketball, they even had a slam dunk contest!

We had a very nice Christmas, with snow and wind and family! What more can you ask? I hope you all had just as nice of a day! Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Another Winter Wonderland

While we were in West Yellowstone, there was a snowstorm here in Blackfoot that dumped about a foot of snow. There was a little wind with it, but mostly just snow, snow, snow. When we got home, we parked Big Red at the church and my car over in Anderson's yard, and Jared and Blake plowed and shoveled the driveway. It took over an hour to get it plowed out so we could bring Big Red home and get my car in the garage. It's been a long time since we have had that much snow in one storm. We are definitely having a white Christmas! Here are some pictures of the snow removal process.

This is the driveway before they started plowing. We don't know who drove in while we were gone. You can see our footprints we made from walking over from Anderson's.

Jared could only do a little strip at a time, then he had to go back over it again to catch what went over the plow.

I'd say that's quite a bit of snow!

Blake got the least fun job.

Jared had to move the snow farther into the garden, so he had room to plow down the driveway.

He goes down the driveway with the plow down, then turns around and comes back to do it again.

Poky had to come and see what was going on, and get some lovin' from Blake.

Winter Wonderland

Sunday night Jared and I loaded up in Big Red and headed for West Yellowstone. We stopped in Idaho Falls and picked up Brian. Celia had to stay home because she had to work. (Sorry we keep leaving you behind, Celia -- we missed you!) Blake had to stay behind on Sunday also because he had to work on Monday. He left as soon as he was finished working Monday afternoon and stopped in Idaho Falls and picked up his mother, and sister Natillie, her husband Mark and daughter Darbie. We all ended up driving in blizzard like conditions, but we made it safely.

After we got all settled in to our suite at West Yellowstone Worldmark, we made hot chocolate. Brian likes to have a huge cup and didn't think the mugs in the cupboard were big enough, so he made his in this tea pot.

Monday morning, they went and "worked out" for a little while.

Then we took off for Island Park. We found the bus that we keep seeing, no snowman yet this year.

The new machine worked really well. I enjoyed the seat, it made riding much easier for me.

When we got back to the pickup, Jared and Brian played around in the powder for a while. Jared absolutely loves it!

Brian had to get used to the machines for a while, then he decided he liked it ok too, everything except the helmet and goggles!

Randy had sent this hat home last year, and Blake decided it is a warm hat! Thanks, Randy -- bring more warm hats home with you!

Natillie even convinced Blake to play Sequence.

We took a picture in the lobby. L - R Jared, Diana, Brian, Blake, Helen, Darbie, Natillie, Mark.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Happy Birthday Jared!!!

Jared turned 18 years old today! How is that even possible? I had to pretend that he was still a little kid and take cupcakes to school. He is taking a CNA class and there are only 6 students in the class, so I took cupcakes to the whole class! After school he had to go to work, then we went to Pocatello. Jared and I wandered the mall and Shopko while Blake did a physical, he found some shoes in Shopko that he is pretty pumped about. Then we ate dinner at Texas Roadhouse.

He got a "Pitt" shirt from Grandpa and Grandma.

Billie found a shirt that says, "I may be Left Handed, but I'm always right." He likes lefty shirts.

He got another really soft shirt.

We got him luggage. I'm not sure he was very thrilled about it, but now we won't have to buy it next year.


Brian and Celia are in Pennsylvania, so we get to tend Ralphie. He's been really good, I think he's getting used to the routine here. So, Celia here are some pictures so you can see that he's doing good. He minds pretty good most of the time, except at dinner time when he begs Blake, but that's no surprise. I just wanted you to know that we haven't lost him....yet!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Happy Birthday Billie!!!

I would like to wish my good friend Billie "Happy Birthday". Her birthday is December 8th. She is a wonderful lady and has done so much for our family and many other people, we appreciate her! We love you Billie! We have been lucky enough to have Billie come for Sunday dinner, but of course, she'll only come if she can do the dishes.

Today we had a cake and candles and sang to her.

I don't think she'll mind me saying that she will be 77! She doesn't act that old.

Blowing out the candles!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!!!

I love it when the Christmas decorations are all up! I don't really love doing the decorating, but I love the happy feeling the lights create. We got most of them put up last weekend, and finished up on Wednesday. Here's the tree all lit up. There's a story about all the lights on the tree, but I won't bore you with all the details. Let's just say that it's either all the lights (both the colored and the white), or have a bare spot with no lights!Here's a view of the decorations.
There's a missionary on our tree again this year!

A Christmas Tree just isn't complete until there's a cat lounging under it!

Here's the fireplace, all lit up!

"The stockings were all hung..." I cross stitched these for our family several years ago. The plan was to give them to the kids when they left home, but I can't bring myself to part with them. So I still hang Cindy's and Brian's and Randy's. Celia will be here for Christmas, so I have an extra one thatI hang up for her. The only problem is that it hangs backward from the rest!

I put most of my "manger scenes" on the piano.

The entry way, and front door, all lit up.

Now you can see all the snowmen decorations. I have a real fettish for snowmen, and have collected quite a few. Some I have made, some have been given to me, and some I have bought.

My little snowmen trees.

The lights by the stairway.

More Snowmen!

The outside is all lit up too. Blake did a really good job this year! Now you've been on a tour of the Purcell Christmas Cottage!