Sunday, January 30, 2011

Ryan's Atlanta conference goes from good to bad

I (Ryan) had a conference in Atlanta a few weeks ago that I was totally looking forward to for months. I was looking forward to great food, fun places to visit, catching up with friends, and enjoying that nice southern weather. I landed at the airport and was given this sweet rental car:

I was able to meet up with the Thompsons and the Johnsons and play some board games which was great. Then as I got ready to leave for my hotel the snow started. I drove through the snow just as it was hitting and arrived safely at the hotel where my conference was held.

Atlanta has like one snow plow and a few inches of snow and freezing weather turned the city into a hockey rink for the next three days. Gas stations were closed. Grocery stores were close. Even Mcdonalds were closed. I wouldn't be writing this right now if it weren't for the determined management and workers at the Waffle House next to my hotel that provided sustenance. For you readers that haven't been to the South, Waffle House is a hybrid of a Dennys and tiled truck stop bathroom.

My Father in Law Stan stopped by for a night and it was fun to visit with him. WE made it out to a cheesecake Factory about a mile away that was still open for some reason.

The next day, just as the sun started to melt the ice I decided to go try some Georgia BBQ and use some per diem at Jim and Nick's. It was so tasty and I loved it but four hours later I was wishing I had eaten at the Waffle House again, because the next two days were spent trying to get over mild food poisoning.

The next day I tried to go to the Coke Factory but the roads were still closed in parts and the traffic was bad so after driving for an hour I turned around as the attraction had closed. By this time I was missing Cheyney and Sam, tired and cold, and sick. I made it through the conference sessions in the day time. I love you Atlanta but it was a rough week.

On the way home I did have a great 4 hour layover in SLC where I got to see my Parents and Wendy and Justin's family.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Happenings of Sam

Just a few updates and cute pictures and videos of our sweet boy.

He just started doing the army crawl. I love how he is so intent and his little legs kick, kick, kick.

Here he is making a funny "3 Stooges" face. He hasn't really done it since but he was doing it all the time that day.

He had bronchiolitis for several weeks so we gave him a nebulizer a few times a day. He was such a good sport.

My mom came to visit for 2 weeks while I started my part-time job and Ryan was away (for one week) at a conference (more on that soon). Mimzy taught him how to wave and clap. She tried to teach him how to crawl but mostly Sam just got a kick out of watching her crawl all around the room. While she was here we had a lot of fun shopping, making curtains for Sam's room, and visiting the sites. We saw the Air Force Academy Cathedral.

It was very unique. It looked like a plane and even the cross was made out of propellers.

We also went to Garden of the Gods.

We ended up taking more pictures of Sam than the red rock.

Father and son sporting their matching BYU sweatshirts.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Visiting Friends

We were so lucky to be able to spend quality time with friends over the holidays. We went to the Giddens and all 6 kids were home! Thomas was home from his mission. Sally was about to pop with a little girl; Taylor just got engaged. Jamie was off to visit her boyfriend's family in California. April was just finished with a semester of nursing school, and John was getting ready for baby #4. Here are Ape and Jamie
April gave Sam this sweatshirt. She is making sure he knows his roots.
I can't let this shout out to the Giddens go by without posting their new music video. It has been a facebook sensation. They always keep us laughing!

Sam loved being with the Belisles. Anna and Tyler are such great big siblings.
Sarah styling Bruce's deer hunting hat.
Sarah shared the cool camo hat with Sam.

I am so glad I got some time with the Thompsons. Ruby made Sam laugh hysterically. We miss them so!
Another treat was getting to see Josh Hay and his family. I went to high school with Josh and now he lives 45 minutes away from us in Colorado. They came to Georgia for the holidays too. Sam gets to see Maizy and Andra every Monday in music class!

Chistmas 2011

It is pretty late but worth documenting. Christmas was so great. Santa made it just like we when we were kids. Santa also knit stockings for all of the new additions to our family.

It is our tradition to line up from youngest to oldest before we see what Santa brought. Finally McKay has people in front of her… and Craig makes sure those behind him cant be seen.
Now you can see us.
Claire made Sam an alphabet book about each person in the family. It probably took her 400 hours. She is so thoughtful and talented. When I saw the page for "F" (Forever Family), I burst into tears.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Christmas Eve 2010

Per tradition, on Christmas Eve we reenacted the nativity scene. Sam had to go to bed and missed his debut as baby Jesus. Dad was the traditional donkey and McKay was nice enough not to sit on him as his knees are getting bad. I am sure I don't need to point out who is playing what part, except for Branagan who was a great Inn Keeper.

Here we are singing and playing Christmas songs. Dad has a melodica, keyboard, and ukelele. He gave Mom a guitar and she gave him an amplifier and microphones. He is ready to turn us into a band.

The best Christmas tree EVER.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Family Forever

It was so nice to be together (although we were missing Brady and Elizabeth who were in Chile and Thailand respectively). We made the most out of every moment….

Christmas Caroling at the Square


Taking some family photos with Sam
From Collages

Canoeing/Kayaking with Cyprus trees and tree houses