Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Ok, I promised to blog about Thanksgiving and as that was weeks ago now, I feel I still owe it. Plus, we had such a nice day I don't mind going back and thinking about it. Our friends Jamie and Nathan F. (Micah 3, Lydia 1.5) invited us along with the C family (Greg, Kathy, Andrew 5, Esther 3, & Phoebe 1.5), Scott & Marissa K, and Mike and Newkirk for dinner. We traveled about 30 minutes south east to Morgan, UT which is a SMALL SMALL SMALL town in the mountains. We got on route 84E in the direction of Cheyenne, WY to head toward their house and couldn't help but laugh at that idea...who ever would have thought we would spend a Thanksgiving anywhere near Wyoming. haha
So they had a full house and I really enjoyed being with the kids A LOT! :) The food was really great as everyone brought their specialty and the fellowship was even better. Each family was far from any relatives for the holiday, so we were able to take this small group from church and create a makeshift family atmosphere that was really quite cozy. Don't get me wrong...NO ONE could ever replace or even come close to being like the Hollers OR the Hardys, but this was a suitable subsitute when they were all 2000 miles away. We really enjoyed getting to know some friends better and learning about what had brought people to Utah and to our church. Ben spent a lot of time hanging with the guys & watching the GB Packers game while I visited with the women and played with the kids to let the moms cook and visit as well. After dinner we played a group game and had dessert and visited more. So a pretty relaxing and over all really enjoyable day. Here are some pictures.
This is Jamie and Nathan...our loving hosts and very dear friends!
Ben with Scott & Marissa. Scott is Canadian (but super conservative) who wants to live in OH or Kentucky (random) and is going to school for accounting and Marissa is from SLC , half her family is LDS and the other half is Muslim. So she has some really interesting stories and insights. We get along great with them...notice the antelope head in the background. Nathan is a bowhunter with SKILLS-take that Napoleon Dynamite!
Kathy and baby Phoebe. The C family is such a delight. Kathy homeschools Andrew for K and Phoebe has special needs that take a lot of time and energy...but they are truly lovely and a blessing to our church family for sure!
Michael & Newkirk...newlyweds as of October, their first married T'giving and her first in UT as well. She is a sweet southern girl from Lousiana who has a great accent and makes amazing sweet potatoes!
This is Micah and Lydia F. Two of the cutest kids...here they are showing off their olives on their fingers. Micah's pants are too big for him so his mom rolled them for him...so cute. These two weigh the same. Micah is in the low end of healthy weights for his age and Lydia is in the high end for her age. Really too cute....but wait there is more!
This is Micah, Andrew & Esther making silly faces. If you look closely you can see Greg in the background also making a silly face.
"Little Esther" is just too cute for words...you should hear her little voice, it's like a cartoon how she talks with such excitement and sincerity. Of course I get a kick out of a little Esther who has brown pigtails (like I did at her age) and who loves pink and horses. Everytime her dad says her name to get her attention I find myself turning expecting to see my dad and to willingly do as he asks...so wierd. I think it wierds Greg out a bit, but I promise him it is stranger for me to hear my name in such a DAD voice. haha
So we also had the chance to go to a college basketball game and see Jamie F's cousin Andrew play for Santa Clara U against Utah State. The tix were free as almost no other family for the team was at the game. We sat directly behind the team on the floor and had a total blast with Jamie, Nathan and Micah. We were the ONLY people there cheering for Santa Clara and it was definitely a full crowd...so I went back to my Holler roots and found my voice to cheer (WOOHOO) for the guys. It was so neat to be sitting right behind them and hearing the coaches comments and all. The Utah Aggies fans could give any PA fans a run for their $...we had fun with a little clean trash talk and all. It was a blast. It definitely brought back college memories for all of us. I was sure to tell Jamie about how we girls didn't like to miss Geneva's mens basketball games our freshman & sophomore years b/c the team was so dang cute! Remember girls? :) The twins? hehe...we were so boy crazy.
This is Andrew. He is a freshman and played most of the game against a Senior who was really huge...but Andrew was a good match. He's like 6'9" and a really good player. Good job Andrew! You played a great game and we had a blast! Utah State won by 4 pts in the last few minutes after Santa Clara had had the lead for the whole first half.
Ok, other updates will be that we had another guest and that we went skiing together for the first time in UT this past weekend. But THAT is a whole other blog. Craziness...that is all I'll say for now....pure craziness. :)
Sunday, December 2, 2007
Ogden puts up a huge lighted "Christmas Village" in the center of town. Local businesses create a themed cottage and they are spread out in the center park, amidst all the lighted trees. It's almost like the German Christmas markets, and is a lot of fun to take kids to.
The snow also came just when we wanted to go out and get our Christmas tree. So it was super exciting to go out to the farm and cut one down. Out here, you can also get a forest service permit for $10 to go out and cut one in the Wasatch backcountry. We'll probably do that next year. But for now, North Pole Pines was a great place to go.
The tree farm, with the Wasatch mountains in the background. (Pennsylvania mountains are really hills, Exhibit A)
"Eagle Eye Esther" picked out a great tree, and was dutiful enough to snap a few pictures of my butt as I cut it down.
Only 3 weeks left til we head back to PA!! We're excited to spend lots of time with family, get a real Yuengling, and dig some real Pennsylvania people.
Esther will get you caught up on Thanksgiving and other things. You can always count on me for snow updates.
Thursday, November 22, 2007
PLEASE tell us what you are thankful for today and why. We love your comments, so if you are reading this take a minute and let us know what you are thankful for today!
Love, Ben & Esther
PS Happy Birthday to Nikki Holler on Tuesday! We love you mom!
Sunday, November 18, 2007
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
A True Blue Eagles Fan is Born!
Um, how cute is that face?
The proud aunt...I'm the other proud aunt, but you'll have to wait till after Christmas to see pics of Aunt Esther with Logan. Have you ever seen a cuter Pumpkin? He's big for his age and fills out the costume PERFECTLY! Lil' Punkin!
He is starting to look more and more like Megan's family-her brother especially, but this is a Holler face. :)
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Meanwhile, Rascal has sat at the door all night trying to figure out how to get outside to where all the action is. We sat on our porch till it got too cold and he sat right inside the full glass storm door meowing and jumping at the door trying to get us to let him out. He seemed fascinated by the groups of kids and lights and noise. You would really swear that cat is a dog the way he loves people and wants to be around them all the time.
So Happy First Halloween to our little pumpkin nephew Logan. And a shout out to Jake and Victoria who I know went to a party as Superman and Wonderwoman-who were never a couple, as Jake explained to me. And to all of you who are clever enough and brave enough to dress up as adults in silly costumes...Happy Halloween!
Monday, October 22, 2007
So the something sad is that one of my students, an 8 yr old boy named Sam was in a car accident with his father this weekend. His father fell asleep at the wheel and they hit a huge steel light post. He is ok, stable but really banged up and almost lost an eye. Poor kid. I visited him today with another staff member and he was better than I expected but will need a lot of time to recover. Please pray for him and his family at this time. I don't beleive they know the Lord and there are a lot of shady issues. His parents are not married and it is suspected that his dad has been using drugs...which may have contributed to the accident. Also pray for me as I will continue to counsel him when he comes back to school...and i'm sure he will have some fear and anxiety issues on top of his other issues. Poor kid!
Ok, so the something funny is a story that happened this weekend. We cleaned house and I had asked Ben to take the bath mats down to put them in the laundry. He agreed, disappeared and reappeared some few minutes later. I asked him if he had put the bath mats in the laundry and he said yes. (I find that we both forget things half way through doing them so we check on each other for stuff like this...now that we have a whole house to clean and not just an apartment, things get easily misplaced or forgotten) Anyway, later that night we started to get ready for bed and I noticed that the rugs were still missing. So, I announced to Ben that one of us needs to go down and pull them out of the washer to dry. He looked at me with a distraught face which seemed to say "I don't want to go back down there tonight" so I offered to go do it myself. That was when he said "But I never started the washing machine." I said "what do you mean, what happened?" He replied "I don't want to talk about it" and walked into the other room. "WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DON'T WANT TO TALK ABOUT IT....WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DIDN'T START THE WASH? I DON'T UNDERSTAND." I said, following him into the room where he was lying on the bed face down as if he was hoping to avoid the conversation. At this point I couldn't help but laugh b/c I was so confused as to what was going on. What horrible thing could have happened in the basement to have caused this reaction. I continued questioning him through my laughter and he continued to say cryptic things like "I don't know" "I don't want to talk about it"....it finally turns out that he just did get distracted and he did "put the mats in the wash", he just didn't start the washing machine. He had no reason why, he just didn't. So we layed in bed laughing as hard as I can remember ever laughing at this whole situation...that he just didn't start the washer, that he got so embarrassed that he ran away from me and that he was so tired that he couldn't make me understand what had happened...and meanwhile i couldn't imagine the horrible thing that he didn't want to talk about. HAHAHAHAHAHA I mean, you probably had to be there...but hopefully you can imagine the situation and understand how ridiculous it was. Oh, and the bath mats did finally get cleaned. :)
Saturday, October 13, 2007
Ben came home yesterday feeling pretty crummy, so we spent the rest of the evening resting and then today are having a sick day together. We only have one more episode of commentary left on our netflix The Office Season 3 disc 3 to watch and then we will be watching it all again. we truly can't get enough...plus there is last week's episode on nbc.com to watch...but besides that I think we'll go out and get Ben the KFC he is craving for lunch and maybe rent a movie from Hollywood since we sent our other 2 netflix back yesterday...and just sleep.
We do covet your prayers that we would heal and be ready for work on Monday. I anticipate that we will...but prayer is always better than just hope alone.
Have a great weekend! Love you all! B & E
Monday, October 8, 2007
Anyway, we need to update you on some of the work that has been going on around here. Today was Columbus day, which translates to "Government Lackie" day off. Ben swears he was thinking about Columbus all day while he was home fitting our new heating vents. Ok, Ben, whatever. ;)
So these pics were taken over this weekend when we totally cleaned up and organized to have our first official dinner party in the new house. We invited our pastor (Don Krafft) and his wife Elizabeth and son Owen as well as our dear friend Jim Cole to join us for Cheesesteaks and peach cobbler (frozen, Marie Callendar's-don't worry I haven't become THAT domestic yet!). The food was great and the company wonderful. We should have gotten pics of our guests but that was one thing that slipped my mind while they were here. So, we only have some of the house.
This new bed was bought to replace our old IKEA bed in the new master bedroom, the IKEA bed will now be a new queen size guest bed when we get a new mattress and boxspring for it. We are going for a Shabby Chic look with slightly mismatched furniture that is all white (mostly b/c they make adult furniture so big, we had to get some kid size pieces to fit our smaller wall space).
This is the new light in our dining room that Ben installed for us. It is so pretty!!!!
The new front door we had installed makes a huge difference on the front of the house. Ben also took down the shutters and we plan to do new steps/driveway/porch in the next few years.
Our new dining room set, rug, light, with trim and curtains! A real formal dining room. No pool tables here! We are searching for the right hutch in which to display my family china.
This was the Dining Room only a month or so ago! What a difference!
Here is the Living Room not long ago, and below is the almost completely finished living room. We will switch out the light for a ceiling fan, fill those shelves with literature and put some things on the wall. We will need to find a TV cabinet/armoire too, but we'll wait on that till we do some other things that are more important...like paint the kitchen!
Before we got a fireplace grate, we had to somehow keep the cats, aka rascal, from getting all sooty, hence the trashcan and boxes, but this was the fireplace before this weekend...and below is after Ben painted it for me and hung my star! How lovely! I think the ivory color of the fireplace and shelves (accented by the ivory star) sets it off as the true centerpiece of the room! I just can't wait to fill those shelves with Jane Austen and other literary greats! Oh, and I guess a few photos of loved ones...I guess. hehe
No, seriously, I can't wait to paint our hallway either b/c I definitely plan to make it a photo gallery of family and friends to show off and to remind us of how loved we are and how blessed we are to love so many!
Keep in touch, let us know what you are up to and we will keep blogging. Next time I will fill you in on our neighbors...and, OH YES, stay tuned for pics of the infamous Johhny B!!!
Friday, October 5, 2007
Thursday, September 27, 2007
Sunday, September 23, 2007
And finally, I have to close it out with Esther's best picture of the day. This one may go up on the walls.
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Even more good news, our friend Stephanie is engaged too! Steph was our first Utah visitor, and the cats still miss her and are anxious to sit on other people's laps and purr a lot. Congrats Steph and Ben!!
To make up a little for missing out on the family time at the shore, we've been able to drive around and see the changing colors. The mountain sides have lots of fiery spots of reds and oranges as the trees and brush make the change. We drove over the "Alpine Loop" near Salt Lake City and drove right by Robert Redford's Sundance Resort. So we pulled over and told him we're not too down with all that liberal stuff, but money points for picking such a cool place.
Wish we had some pictures. The digital camera did not survive the horizontal rain on the Pfiefferhorn, and the camera we got online arrive in a "Refurbished" box. Nice! So after our refund we'll hook one up.
Monday, September 10, 2007
Saturday, September 1, 2007
Friday, August 31, 2007
So, I also want to thank you all for your prayers and encouragement about finding a job. Praise God...I was offered a one year position as a school counselor/case manager for SLC school district working with at-risk elementary students. So, it is not the high school guidance counselor position that I really want, but it is a good start considering that I couldn't even apply for any positions until August...and school positions aren't that easy to come by this late in the summer. I think it will be a good fit. I will use a lot of the skills that I have used in previous jobs and will learn some new ones. The commute will stink, but the pay is really good, so that helps. AND this means we can definitely plan a trip home at Christmas since I will have that week off! YAY! We will get to see all of the Hardy and Holler families...including our nephew Logan who seems to be as thrilled as we are at that idea! check out his darling smile!
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
handsome little guy, huh?
Is Brook pointing to the baby or the "daddy sack"?
Aunt Katers herself...with a tiny baby boy...I am so jealous!
Need a nap....dad?
Could he have a more gorgeous mom? And she is funny too!
So alert! I like the stripes Logie!
I call this one "Proud Daddy"...what do you think?
Seriously...I am so proud of Brook and Meg and Logan...what a gorgeous family...more so because of the love of Christ displayed in their lives than even the smashing good looks...(hehe sorry, that must have been a Dave Kinnaird moment)...Praise God from whom all blessings flow!
Kate has promised me even more pics from the upcoming weekend...my dad is having a BBQ with friends from Trinity in P'ville...I'll miss the reunion sadly, but we'll all have more pics to look forward to!