Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Snow Day and Book Exchange

Today a bunch of us had planned on doing a book exchange for our kiddos. We had planned to have a lunch and then go to the park. Well, starting at 9:00 am it began snowing and it hasn't stopped since (it's 5:00 pm now). So we had a snow day, keeping with the Christmas Spirit, in addition to our fun book exchange.

Madison looking at the snow for the first time

The kids ripping into their books

On the side of my house

From my backyard, looking at the park

Welcome Home Jordan

Monday morning, December 15th, we got up and hit the road early to head down to Camp Pendleton to welcome home one of our best friend's 1st Lt. Jordan Caro. He deployed to Iraq in July and wasn't suppose to be back until February, but due to some circumstances in Iraq, Jordan was able to make it home in time for Christmas!!! What an awesome surprise for Emma!!!!

Well when we got on the road to head to Emma's house we had no idea what was waiting for us in Yucca Valley (about 30 miles away). We started seeing all of the mountains covered with snow...then we noticed that the sides of the road were covered with snow. It was raining while we were noticing all of this, then all of a sudden it started snowing and we realized that it had been. The roads very quickly became icy, since California isn't use to seeing snow and the roads weren't salted. It was quite scary driving, as I could feel, by the way my tires were reacting when I hit the brakes, just how slippery the road was. Once we were past the Morongo Basin it was much, much better and we didn't think anything of the snow, until we got a call saying that the roads had been closed down and they didn't know when they were going to reopen them. So for the time being we were stuck!

Here is a picture of our console and the thermometer in our car

Okay, now to the fun part of this post!!! While Alex was down at the Brig with clients all morning, Madison and I hung out with Emma and helped calm her nerves as well as helped her get ready and intercept numerous phone calls. We had so much fun while we were waiting. The day, as with most homecomings, had a couple of kinks in it, but that's what makes it memorable. Due to the weather conditions, Jordan's flight was rerouted to the Ontario Airport instead of arriving at March Air Force Base, as was the original plan. Then they had to wait for the busses to come get them and bring them home (in the rain). Here are some pictures of us waiting for the call that we should head down to the gym to wait for Jordan.

Emma on the phone (finding out Jordan is in California) while doing her hair

Once we arrived at the gym (it was pouring) we raced inside and then waited for about 30 minutes (which isn't long at all, we had perfect timing) for Jordan to arrive. We knew that they were going to be marching in to the gym in formation, so we scoped out the best spot to stand. I video taped the homecoming for Emma and Alex took pictures. Madison was our cheering section (from her stroller).

Just found out that they were outside lining up in formation

Here they come

Welcome home Jordan!!! We are so glad that you are back!! Can't wait to start our hang out times again!!! Looking forward to our Fashion Island tradition this coming Sunday!!!!

Levi's Birthday Party

On December 13th, we celebrated Madison's best friend, Levi's birthday. There was yummy food and a lot of friends. It was a night filled with laughter, celebration, and cheer. We were so thrilled to be celebrating Levi's first birthday with him and with his family. While stationed out here in Twentynine Palms, the Brewsters have become very dear to us and as stated in my previous post, we are just so elated that they are back together as a family. God is good and so faithful.

This is the present Madison gave to Levi

Madison was playing with Levi's new guitar

Levi getting ready to have his birthday cupcake


Here is a random picture of Madison (we were taking sporty pictures for one of Grandpa's Christmas presents) and then there is a picture of the cats in their new favorite place to sleep (Madison's changing table). Ever since we put Madison's heater back in her room the cats are in there as much as possible.

Christmas Party at the Buffs

On Monday, December 8th, we had a Pre-Christmas, Christmas party!!!! It was so much fun! Joey and Lindsey were wonderful hosts!!! The food was delicious!!! We had Lindsey's famous chicken dip, salad, pasta and pot roast!!! Then for dessert there were cookies, carrot cake, and an apple blueberry crisp!!! It was so much fun to hang out with friends and just spend the evening talking and enjoying ourselves. The kids had a lot of fun too! Thank you Joey and Lindsey for an amazing evening and we look forward to making this a tradition and are excited for next years (no pressure).

Getting our Christmas Tree

This year, like last, we went to Home Depot to pick out a Christmas Tree. We went on a Sunday and what a bummer, we were told, after we got there, that their next shipment wasn't coming until Tuesday (200 trees). We were determined to get our tree though, so we searched through a few trees and found one that was perfect! Just as we were getting ready to leave another family that we are friends with on the base, came to get their tree too and was gracious enough to throw our tree in their truck and drop it off for us so that we didn't have to figure out how to tie it on top of our Prius.

Visiting Santa

This year, we were not able to make it out to my favorite Santa in the whole world, so we had to settle for the Santa at the Brea Mall (in Orange County). We waited in line for about an hour and a half and Madison loved watching the other kids get their pictures taken, but as soon as it was her turn she wanted nothing to do with Santa (even though she was very proud of herself for saying his name). As you can see in the pictures, I ended up having to get in the picture with Madison in order for it to work.

John Mayer Concert

Alex and I went to see John Mayer's Acoustic Concert at the Nokia Amphitheater on December 6th. (This was Alex's Christmas present from his parents)We had so much fun!

Before the concert we went the California Pizza Kitchen and had a yummy dinner, just the two of us and talked about how excited we were to be 1) on a date and 2) going to the John Mayer concert!

Alex has been to many concerts and I've been to a few, but this one was so much fun! Our seats were awesome!!! We were on the right side in the Orchestra section. Adel opened for John Mayer and she was awesome. I had never heard any of her music before and definitely have added her cd to my "wish list." She played for about 45 minutes and then John Mayer came out and he played for about an hour and a half and then did about a 25 minute encore.

Here are some pictures of our outing:

On our way inside the theatre

Waiting for the show to start


John Mayer

Friday, December 05, 2008

Welcome Home Ben!!!

Some of our dearest friends here in Twentynine Palms had a very big night last night. Lt. Ben Brewster, 1st Platoon, Golf Company, returned home after a very long, hard deployment in Afghanistan. The day kept us all in suspense as his arrival time changed at least five different times due to their plane breaking down in Chicago. But, he finally arrived on Victory field at around 7:15 pm. The company marched out onto the field and then one platoon at a time they were released to their anxiously awaiting family and friends.
Ben and Di, I am so very happy for you that you are back in each other's arms. I know that it has been a long eight months, but our Lord is good soon you will be back to normal life in no time. You guys have been a huge blessing in my life and I truly appreciate your friendship.
Welcome Home Ben!!!!

Anxiously awaiting Ben's arrival

Ben (the one on the far left) getting ready to release his platoon

First embrace

Levi welcoming home his daddy