Friday, December 31, 2010

Cheers...

To great memories with friends in Mexico that I will forever cherish

To a lovely wedding in Canada where I got a new sister

To a unique culture experience in Romania who was still feels the effects of communism.

To eye opening experiences in Bulgaria that I previously knew nothing about

To the people in Serbia who you’d think they’d all won the lottery when they won a world cup soccer game

To what must be the most under-rated city ever, Budapest, Hungary

To the Passion Play in Germany

To a fulfilling internship in England

To some serious mother-daughter bonding in Portugal

To the El Greco art in Spain

To the monkeys that dominate Gibaltar

To 2010

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Going down the Danube River as we went through the Iron Gate.



9 things I learned about myself this year...

-Work isn’t an 8-5 thing. It’s more of a lifestyle.

-There is such a thing as too much of something good.

-Travel interruptions are to be expected and add to the adventure. & I think I make a good travel mate.

-Living overseas doesn’t scare me.

-I’m a believer in Chinese medicine--works for me.

-I’m a purger when it comes to stuff that I don’t have a place for.

-I’m not an impulsive buyer.

-I don’t ever get bored.

-It took me way too long to do this.



Frosty...

the hockey player

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We experienced quite the blizzard last Sunday here in CT. We got 18 inches of snow in half a days time. I'm plenty used to the snow from Utah, but I don't think I've ever experienced a down poor quite like this.






Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The best love story...

is your own.

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How's that for some gush?


Hydrangea at Christmas...

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How beautiful is this lobby centerpiece? I don't think I've ever seen hydrangea at Christmas but it beautiful. & I love it!





Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas in New York...

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Incredible Swarovski star on top of the gigantic tree. Blurry pic since taken through the restaurant window.


Saks projected snow flakes with incredible window displays below.

The all of us except baby Charlie who we were able to visit right after.

Poinsettia tree



Saturday, December 25, 2010

Family Nativity...

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Andrew's family has some wonderful traditions that add greatly to the Christmas Spirit. The nativity reenactment is one of my favorite. Lilly read a narrative that gives a detailed account of the birth of Christ while including New Testament scripture. Andrew was a wise man and I was an angel. The role comes natural.

My niece Abby (Mary) rode Ben (the donkey) with Connor (Joseph) by her side.
Please note the fur vest and tail as they approach the inn to knock and ask if there is any room.

Wise men offering of gold.

We the angels



Christmas in Connecticut--God's Acre...

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Andrew's hometown, New Canaan, has the cutest tradition where they gather at the center of town to sing Christmas Carols on Christmas Eve. They light up the big tree which almost resembles the Rockerfeller tree. And there is a band-stand of talented older peeps who seem to be having the moment of their life as everyone sings along.

Always a pleasant surprise to see the Quinn girls--Lindsey, Kimmy, & Natalie. Light specs of the tree behind us.



Precious white church at the top of the hill beautifully lit up at night. There are three like this surrounding the hill. Hence, God's acre I'm guessing.



Awkward Christmas Video...


Did this really ever happen?
& she thought she would take off without him...


Thursday, December 23, 2010

If I could change one thing about myself...

I'd have the perfect tint of red hair.

Pic from this blog
I vicariously live it and love it through this great girl who is having minor contractions as we speak.

I can't say we haven't spent quality time together. This was a spontaneous weekend to Vegas. & I'm not bashful to upload a terrible pic of myself. Once I saw this pic I never wore these glasses again. Why am I standing behind Drew? She's The Man?



Wednesday, December 22, 2010

D&G high-tops...

Agent Zero in black patent leather D&G basketball high-tops.

Before long it will be Prada or Gucci. Forget the Nike sponsorships. The women's side of the game would appreciate a different warm up suit at least. Perhaps the women personnel involved in bball doesn't fit the branding image though. (Since I played that's only a knock at myself).
I remember getting my first pair of Air Force 1's 10 years ago. Looks like I'm missing a very exciting era of basketball. I look forward to watching this one evolve.


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas Flats

I got these this summer in London from Office which can be found on virtually every street in London. They reminded me of a Gucci but 1/100th of the price. Especially loving these at Christmas!




Monday, December 20, 2010

Christmas in Connecticut--Part II

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Kids playing with toys and crafting add to the holiday cheer.

Andrew's mom, Deb, has the placed decorated so perfectly. I need to take a pic of the tree in the entry way. It's stunning. Andrew's parents hosted a Christmas Part with a sit down dinner for over 80 people. There were tables and chairs everywhere. I was glad I could come a bit early and see the magic go down. & polish some of the silver. She asked the right person to do that job.

Deb gets a new Santa each year representing that particular year. The best is the African American Santa the year Obama was elected. They are all lined up in the window seal.




Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas in Conneticut...

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Couldn't be happier to be spending the holidays with Andrew' family. I love them like my own. I've actually been here a little over a week now. Andrew's sister had her baby a bit early so I've enjoyed special time with her two girls.

Needless to say there will soon be 19 of us under one roof. So this is my theme for the holidays. I might just have to order this poster. It's perfect for many settings.


Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas in Utah--Nativities

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Midway, Utah hosts one of the nation's largest Christmas nativity collections ever year. Locals lend their nativity sets for a weekend where all can see. It includes hundreds if not thousands of nativity sets representing over 90 countries.

I wasn't allowed to take pictures though. So I took notes on my phone of the various countries and type of nativity sets I particularly loved. Of course I'm most drawn to those countries that I've been too. Which makes me sick that I didn't start looking prior to our experience buying our first nativity set in Germany explained here.

The South American countries as well as the tribal countries of Africa, had the most amazing representation of the birth of Christ. These below don't even begin to do it justice. I couldn't find many online. We saw sets made of corn husks, beads, bottle caps, clay, crochet, knit, felt, ceramic, porcelain, hand carved wood, straw, and the list continues. What indigenous people can do with their local goods and their hands is just amazing. I'm officially obsessed with sentimental nativity sets. But not so much the ones below, but our very own that we found here.

And we loved that we could take a pic with our good friends as shown above.

(above) clips of verses included on the set above
(below) Made in Nepal. Similar structure of how they live

(above) made of newspapers in Phillipines
(below) hand-carved in Ghana
(below) hand-painted and from Peru



Thursday, December 16, 2010

20 more random things...

1. I don't have a very audible laugh.

2. Excluding sentiment, my favorite wedding gift were these bowls.

3. One of my closest and dearest friends is in her 70's. We can talk for hours as we do when we walk around the BYU indoor track.

4. Andrew and I couldn't feel more blessed in the couple friends department.

5. Daydreaming about life while I work out is just as effective as having an iPod with music.

6. My lover has a heart of gold. They just don't get any sweeter.

7. Andrew's sister Katie is my hero. What mom's do for the sake of their child is unbelievable.

8. These are the type of random thoughts I have when I fall asleep.

9. Andrew and I wear the same size shoe. We share running shoes.

10. I think my long levers give me a disadvantage in Yoga. But I love Yoga. One day Andrew will too. I never thought my brother would, but he came with me to what was once It's Yoga and is now 3B Yoga. I've never laughed so hard in a yoga class. He would blurt out questions if he didn't understand the pose. Before long he'll be touching his toes. One stretch at a time.

11. Andrew and I strategically hid a 2008 penny on BYU campus the year we were married so we can send our kids back to find it one day... maybe when students.

12. I was born with the travel bug.

13. Flying has to be one of the most soothing and relaxing things for sleeping conditions. Yes, even sitting straight up.

14. I can't believe I've been done with school for 3 years. I was walking on campus the other night and had some crazy flashbacks with emotions from school flooding back.

15. I wonder where we'll be this time next year. I really don't have a preference where. Just wondering. I feel like something adventurous is in store.

16. One of the greatest feelings though is moving and feeling like you're off to a new start. It's hard to, but you feel like everything is ahead of you and great memories are behind. I've only really moved from Louisiana to Utah, but I remember the feelings so well.

17. I wanted to be a cheerleader when I was in the the 6th grade, but a friend told me I was too tall. It didn't hurt my feelings. But I never thought about it again or had a desire.

18. I'm pretty strict about cutting my hair every 6 weeks.

19. The car I drive has 172,000+ miles and hasn't given me the first bit of trouble. It's the same car my mom dropped me off to junior high in.

20. I have a self-induced uniform that I wear pretty much every day. I can dress it up with boots and a jacket and dress it way down--like going to the gym--with tennis shoes. The best bang for my buck on clothes yet.

Similar post here and here.


Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas in Utah--1st Presidency Devotional...


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That is the spirit of Christmas, which puts in our hearts a desire to give joy to other people. We feel a spirit of giving and gratitude for what we have been given. The celebration of Christmas helps us keep our promise to always remember Him and His gifts to us. And that remembrance creates a desire in us to give gifts to Him.

The Lord makes clear what gifts we might give Him out of our gratitude. Each act of kindness to anyone becomes a kindness to Him because He loves all of Heavenly Father’s children. And because that brings joy to Him, it also brings joy to His Father, to whom we owe thanks beyond measure.

--President Eyring