Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Jaclyn's Engaged!

So on Saturday when Steven's mission call came in the mail, Jaclyn was off on a sort of scavenger hunt that led her from clue to clue, special place to special place - all related to historic points in her time dating Mason. It's hard to tell someone else's story, but I know she had a good time with it. Mason's sister helped set it up as per Mason's instructions, allowing Mason to spend the afternoon following the clues along with Jaclyn. 

The final clues in the Fine Arts Building: Mason kneel here, Jaclyn stand here. This picture is a new happy place for me right now. I can just open it up on my phone, and instant happiness. Look at those faces!

Jaclyn's ring is a new setting created with diamonds from Mason's grandmother's ring. It is so lovely and special.

Yeah, so we had a big day on Saturday with a mission call and an engagement. This is what our Saturday night date looked like from both sides of the table with many people to tell, and many people congratulating us.

Congratulations Mason and Jaclyn!

Monday, 26 January 2015

Steven's going on a mission!

I couldn't be more proud of Steven for his decision to serve for 2 years as an LDS missionary. The mail was a couple of days slower with the call than we expected and it was a long 2 days!

He phoned us right after completely excited about where he's going to serve, and I know the Lord has a mission for him to do there.

BYU Friends

Steven was surrounded by friends as he opened his call, but strangely his sister wasn't there . . .

Thursday, 8 January 2015

A Little More Christmas

Christmas morning we woke up at home, opened our stockings together upstairs, and then went down to the front room to open the gifts under the tree. The kids are now all independent shoppers and it was fun to see what they chose to give us and each other. The funny story from the gift opening comes from all of Steven's presents. No surprise that we all got BYU branded clothing, but hilarious how he paid for them. He's been a little tight for cash, so he used his meal plan dollars to buy our t-shirts and sweatshirts at Jamba Juice on campus. I still think that is so funny! He paid for his own meal plan, so it was coming from his own money, but pretty ingenious how he solved his cash-flow problem.

In the afternoon we went over to Grandma and Grandpa's house for more presents and Christmas dinner. It was an "Olson" year for everyone so we had quite a crowd!

On Boxing Day we drove down, just our family, to Whitefish for some skiing. Unfortunately Chloe got sick and spent our time there sitting and watching movies, poor girl. Ken and I alternated hanging out with her and skiing with the other kids.

Mason joined us part way into the ski trip, arriving just in time for the coldest day I have ever skied! It wasn't the temperature so much as the wind, but it was bitter. We spent quite a bit of time taking breaks in the ski lodge.

Carmen and Jaclyn.

We drove home on New Year's Eve Day, and cooked a dinner of Surf andTurf with crab claws and steaks:

Mason was appreciative and took a photo of his dinner.

What we didn't take any pictures of was the New Year's brunch we hosted the next morning. Boo! I have wanted to host a New Year's brunch for quite some time, and with Mason visiting I felt like I had a good excuse to have people over so that there were no complaints of him being in town and no one having the opportunity to meet him. Lucky for me Chloe is an early bird and a chef, she pretty much did the whole thing.

After that it was a couple of days of errands and laundry and then Mason, Jaclyn, and Steven headed back to Provo for winter semester at BYU. We miss them, but we are also enjoying more time with Carmen and Chloe. I am just so glad we had 4 children and that I still have kids at home!


For Christmas Eve 2014 we played some of our favourite games from The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon:

Getting ready to host Christmas Eve is truly a group project, though much more fun than group projects at school!

Naturally we started with dinner:

Blake, Chloe, Whitney, Carmen, Eric

Harry, Sue, Steven, Jaclyn, Kevin, Natalie, Ken, and I

We had sparkling cider, sleepy soup, rolls, and appetizers (of course). Sometimes the best part of having a tradition is the elimination of decision making! 

Our Christmas Crackers this year held whistles tuned to specific notes, and some of the kids worked together to learn a song while the rest of us lingered at the table.

Then on to the games:

We started out with Bag of Lies (because gift bags were cheaper than boxes). I successfully lied to Grandpa here, but the champion of the game was either Carmen or Jaclyn. Scary what good liars they are.

We had a lip sync contest. Here Chloe is performing "You Make Me Feel So Young" by Frank Sinatra. We didn't name any winners, but I think special recognition needs to go out to Kevin and Natalie for rapping.

We played Antler Ring Toss.

And Water War - with Uno cards because I couldn't quickly find anything else. I forgot that I bought plastic ponchos for this game, so Kevin and Ken just got wet.

Christmas Eve Finale as always: PiƱata

Then everyone went home and we settled down for our traditional Christmas Eve movie: Die Hard (edited). Ho. Ho. Ho.