Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Christmastime Hodge Podge

Some photos of our activities the past few weeks.
Always love the lights at beautiful Temple Square.

 The Visitor's Center at Temple Square has added some gorgeous large stills from the LDS Bible film series.
I was particularly drawn to this beautiful portrayal of 
Mary and toddler Jesus.
 We were blessed to obtain tickets to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas Concert.
This year featuring Broadway singer Santino Fontana and the Sesame Street Muppets.
I smiled and wept through the entire concert.
It was that good.
And probably one of my very favorites.

 Before the concert we enjoyed walking through City Creek.
 We ate dinner at The Cheesecake Factory.
 (Thank you Coryn and Scott)
Notice we are outside in December.
While we were there who should happen to sit behind us?
Apparently the jolly old man himself.
I mean, how often do you get a photo bomb by Santa Claus?

What are you looking at?? 
We also checked in on his reindeer who were staying at Thanksgiving Point.

 I spent some time making the traditional Christmas Date Balls
for my book group, friends and my husband's office.
 Visited Downtown Provo to see this year's 
clever Christmas windows.
This one was at Pioneer Book on Center Street.
As a book lover, this was a favorite.
 Also made a trip to the Beehive Bazaar which is a tradition.
So many wonderful items made by local creatives.
 This is Noelle Olpin who created the Bazaar. 
It has been around for many years and is a local favorite.
We have known Noelle and her husband Steve (a film maker) since they were newlyweds over 20 years ago.
and lived across the street from us. 
Such talented and innovative individuals.

 I had to share this photo of my Cammy with
 sweet two-year-old Bram.
My girls babysat our good friend's three boys while 
we all attended ward choir practice for our Christmas program.
(We call them our pretend grandchildren.)
It is always an adventure to have 'little boys' in our home.

 (Coryn's BYU office party last year)
BYU's Cosmo finally donned a BLUE Santa suit after years of wearing a red one.
I think there must have been complaints about the red and someone finally made the call:)
Missing these two this Christmas!

 Hard to believe it was just a year ago this past week
 that these sweethearts
were getting married.
Such a lovely winter wedding.
 And speaking of winter.
Where is our snow?
It has certainly been a mild and unusual winter thus far.

Oh, and California Cait, 
The Red Tornado has blown in to join us for Christmas.
Let the festivities begin!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Book Babes and Brett Book Tour

 Our  Book Group for December was especially festive this year!
We were lucky enough to get tickets to meet and listen to renowned
children's book illustrator/writer Jan Brett.
Courtney found out about it through her sources and we sent
some of our ladies down to the library
 to try to get tickets the minute
they became available.
(Thanks Brenda and Ashley.)
Apparently all 500 hundred tickets were snatched up quickly.

 Ms. Brett arrived in style!
A luxury tour bus that she travels in across the country. 
She was accompanied by her husband Joseph Hearne who has
been a bassist for the Boston Symphony Orchestra for 53 years!

 This is awesome Gene Nielsen who is the director of
The Provo Library at Academy Square.
His enthusiasm for books and authors is contagious.

Jan Brett was darling.
I loved how she dressed in line with the style 
of her art and characters.
Inside the gift box was a real white bunny.
She told us a few things about bunnies as she held him.
She geared her remarks to the children present,
encouraging their creativity and telling them to find
a quiet spot to practice each day.

Here is another Jan.
My sweet friend of over 20 years who adores Jan Brett's work.
Our book group was so excited to make this happen for our Jan.
(The drawing of this bunny was done on stage
 by Ms. Brett while she talked.)

 After her presentation we were taken in groups to meet her
and to have a book signed if we wanted.

 She was so personable and darling and took time with each person.
Along with her books, Jan had brought a Christmas card 
designed by Jan Brett
which had been sent to our Jan by a friend in 1979.
Ms. Brett couldn't believe she still had it and she signed it for her.
Our delightful Jan was encouraging Jan Brett to create 
a greeting card line
and she told her she would consider it:)

 Jan Brett even took time to talk to my daughter Courtney
about her own writing and gave her some encouragement.

 Afterwards we all gathered at Brenda's lovely home to have our
traditional cookie exchange.
I promise we didn't eat all of these, rather we all went home with 
a variety of cookies on our plates to share with others.

 Before we partook of the goodies
Brenda made sure to take some fancy photos.

Cheryl's daughter Miranda whom we all adore
had just arrived in her mission field that week
(Russia Vladivostok)
and we were all eager to hear about her.

(One last blurry photo.)
It was a wonderful way to wrap up our 2014
year of reading and sharing.
Looking forward to more in 2015.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

She Did It!

(CD Photo Cover by Jeremy Harris)

Our daughter Caitlyn moved to the sun and the sand of Los Angeles
a little of over 2 years ago to pursue her dream of being
a singer-songwriter.
She has been working very hard to achieve this goal.
Long hours at her jobs to make ends meet,
and with whatever extra-time she has had 
she has been working on the music.

Today her EP was released on iTunes.
We are so proud of her and happy this has come to fruition.
After her CD release concert this weekend in LA
we hope she will make some time for a nap:)

You can check out the music HERE