Time sure can fly by. Yet some of the events from the past two months seem like they happened just last week.
Introducing a living room and a dorm trailer for the boys! These two improvements have made living in this house so much more workable and comfortable for us! We especially enjoy having a couch to sit on when we read the Bible in the mornings!
Having company has definitely been a highlight for us! Since the last update we've had company from OR, CO, AZ, PA, Northern CA and Taiwan, not to mention our dear friends who live locally, and who we enjoy seeing on more of a weekly basis! Very fun times!
Dad, captivating a bunch of young people
Our friends from AZ came by one Sunday and we stayed up until about 2 AM discussing scripture with them and playing volleyball and air soft wars.
Gabe Booher came by on his way back home. He stayed a few days and I think we only let him sleep a total of 6 hours. (Maybe a slight exageration). We went out to his sister's house one morning, arriving at 6 or 7. She served us all breakfast and we used their yard for shooting! That was a "blast!" Amazing hospitality by the Thompsons! (Thanks guys!)
The best shooting range in So Cal! ;)
Go buddy! Shoot dat thang.
We got together with some friends from Taiwan in December. The Suns, and Aunty Christina and Minna got a real kick out of shooting guns for the first time, and we got a kick out of watching them!
The Currans family came and stayed with us for a few days and we had a fun, jam packed time surfing, contra-dancing, going to a tea party, visiting Trader Joes, touring the dump/transfer station, cooking, eating, reading, singing and just visiting together!
All of us girls in one shot!!
L to R, Heidi, Hannah, Kaylee, Hillary and Tiffany
Dad and Mr. Currans heading out to sea
Yeehaw! (Hey Currans, don't forget to come back to practice!)
Wid Lyman was here from Pennsylvania last week. He drove his big orange rig, which really is beautiful no matter what you might think! It was great seeing him again! We met the Lymans in OK, and Wid used to come over every afternoon to spend his free time painting with us. They are very generous, kind hearted people!
Can't get the picture yet, it's on somebody elses computer
The Johnson family from Oregon didn't stay with us but they came over 3 times and we were glad to see them! If you ever need some energy just look at them and you'll feel rejuvinated. :-) We wish they didn't have to move up to Oregon. They are missed by everyone down here.
Some of the highlights from this month besides seeing out of town company...
At the beginning of December Dad and Justin flew to Minnesota to take a class in granite installation. Justin did his first granite job shortly after that! Having an in-house granite installer will be a huge help to the business since we can at least speak the same language and know where our granite guy is if he doesn't show up.
We celebrated several birthdays in December. Trevor shared a party with Sean Bracey. We all met at the park to go frisbee golfing and then we went to the Bracey's house for dinner. That was a memorable party, we're still enjoying the discs that the Bracey's gave to everyone who played!
The birthday boys
Waiting to surprise Sean
No, Chris, no! Don't jump!!! It's just a frisbee.
For the girl's birthdays in December we all went ice skating and then spent the rest of the evening playing games. I think we've gone to more parties this month than ever before.
Playing Mennonite Manners
I think these guys have some issues
On Christmas eve we had a special evening service where every family who came had to share something. Afterward we shared refreshments and volleyball, and appreciated the fire pit that Jim F. left at our house several weeks ago. In fact, we've been using it at least once a week...
Go little Dortignacs!
Christmas day, Dad, Will and Mandy started early and headed out to the beach. Mandy took pictures while Dad surfed and Will used his fins and boogie board. After a big breakfast at home we wandered over to Papa and Grandma's house to visit, and then headed to Uncle Mike and Aunt Nancy's house, where Dad's side of the family was, to visit some more and eat. We were really happy to see Great Grandma O'Malley! She looked amazing on her 93rd birthday! That evening we visited Pastor Sam to wish him a happy birthday too. (He and Grandma share a birthday.) We sat around in his room and sang for about an hour. All in all it was a great way to spend the day!
Tiffany, Dad and G.G. O'malley
Dad turned 50! We had a small party of about 60 people on his birthday, which was the day after Christmas. Dad finally broke down and got a short board and after 3 days of being pounded around in the surf he was able to stand up! Persistance paid off! He hasn't been surfing since... ;-)
On December 29th we went to the Creighton's Christmas ball. We were glad we had some
practice at dancing before hand.
Um, doesn't look too graceful there
On New Year's Eve we had a spur of the moment pizza night that lasted well into the new year. Most of us kids stayed up and went straight to the Rose parade to view the floats before it started. We met with a bunch of friends first to carpool down there, and then went back to our friend's house for a big huge breakfast and a great game of football afterward. Around 2:00 PM a few of us were more than ready for bed so we headed home, but the die hards stayed on and watched their first college football game and ended up going 38 hours without sleeping since we all had to visit and talk about the weekend when they got home.
Most of the group at the Rose Parade
Singing to keep warm drew quite an audience
This week Chris and Justin are up in Lone Pine, somewhere up by Mammoth, doing an electrical controls job. Everyone at home is kind of wandering around missing them. JK! It's not quite that bad! They are missed, but our schedule is keeping us so busy we don't have much time to sit around and cry in their absence.
Last Sunday we were all encouraged to catch a vision, set some goals and move forward. "Where there is no vision the people perish..." Proverbs 29:18 It's amazing to see it play out in daily living... Set some goals and take the first steps, the rest follows through kind of the same way a car will go where you steer it much easier once you get it moving.
Hope you all have a Happy New Year!