Sunday, April 19, 2015


We took a trip to Flagstaff after Christmas to have some time to ourselves and see old friends.  It was good for good.  It just always feels like going home to our people, even though "home" is a lot of places for us.  Jeremy really loves the mountains (well, we all do--I don't know what we're going to do in the flat Mid West!) and he also has his best friend in the world in Flagstaff--Jason.  We stayed at Jason and Mariah's house/iHouse Flagstaff (where they house international students).  They are always so generous with us and let us stay for free when there are empty rooms!  It's like our own personal hotel :)  with some of our best friends living next door.  We also got to see quite a few other friends...and I guess I didn't take too many pictures because there's no way to capture what "catching up" with old friends feels like in a photo.  It just makes the heart feel warm.  I enjoyed time with Jason and Mariah and also was able to be near my close friend, Christy, and her family as they mourned the loss of her husband, Joe's, youngest brother.  It was a special time.
Knowing that there was an impending snow storm the night we pulled into town, I drove to the local Walmart and elbowed my way through the crowds to grab the last few winter clothes items in (mostly) the appropriate sizes.  It felt like everyone was getting ready for Y2K with all the empty shelves and frantic shoppers.  Weather is so exciting, So Cal peeps!  

One night was so cold that the snowflakes sparkled in a way I'd never seen before.  It was amazing!  

I don't even have a fancy-pants camera and my fingers were frozen, but look at these snowflakes--Amazing!

Icicle Warriors of Destruction Gang

So I took my kids and Jason and Mariah's oldest, Carli, outside to sled and it was cold and I gave my gloves to a fussy kid and there was a hyper dog who kept jumping in front of the sled and I kept having to slide down the hill to help bring the sled up and it was sort of totally stressful and bone-pain cold and then the little girls were like, (in their sing-song voices) "We wanna build a snowman" and it was kind of like a nightmare because I just wanted to go inside and get warm.  The snow wasn't mold-able--too cold--but they insisted, so I found some ice clods and threw them together and was like, "Here's your snowman.  You satisfied?" and they were like (sing-song/whiney) "He needs eyes" and I was praying that God would provide something quickly that I could use for eyes and then "Okay, there!  Let's go inside!"  and then "He needs a mou-outh!"  Oh my goodness, I slap a stick on there and turn toward the house.  Pause.  "He neeeeeds a carrot no-ose!"  and then I lost my stuff and was like "NO!  No carrot nose!  We're going inside.  You are making impossible requests for me and my hands are frozen and look at all that I've done for you!"  And they just sort of blinked up at me, sighed, and waddled back to the house behind me.  Not sure I'll be asked to babysit in blizzard conditions again.

We found the world's largest snowball at the park, thanks to some bored teenage boys on Winter Break.

iHouse balcony.  What a view!

Mountains, oh how we love thee!

I always love seeing these two guys together.  Except when I'm within earshot and can hear them coming up with some hair-brained idea.  Some things never change.

These two grown men found way too much joy in clobbering two little boys with snowballs!

The boys fought back valiantly.

Here's a video of poor children trying to escape the onslaught of snowballs by grown men some of the action:

This girl and her snowmen.  I declared I wouldn't help this time but then of course I came out and helped her find a hat and arms because I am a sucker for putting a face on inanimate objects.   

We had many sweet moments inside warm houses spending time with warm people.  Here's Sam and Jason and Mariah's middle child, J.J.