Thursday, January 31, 2013

Birthday in Bainbridge

We left Bainbridge one day before Luke's first birthday. 
We had a little party with the Harpers.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


We went as a family kayaking at the end of Spring Creek.  It was actually a little chilly this day but beautiful.  

We went out again at the boat basin on a really warm day.  This was our tri-athlon day of biking, kayaking, and climbing on the train!

Bowling Tournament

 Here we are bowling before Bran and Claire drove back to Texas.  Craig killed in the first game but Dad skunked us all in the second.  Sam also enjoyed bowling with a kiddie helper.  

Horseback Riding

My dad is quite the cowboy.  He grew up riding, training, and having horses.  For one of our activities, we all went horseback riding.  I love horses and was really excited to get Sam on one.  I had him ride with me and for some reason, the horse started running.  I was holding onto Sam with one arm and trying to pull the reins tight with the other.  I needed a third hand to hold onto the saddle.  The horse came to an abrupt stop and sharp turn and Sam and I FELL OFF!!!  It was a long and scary way down! I went into "mommy mode" and tucked Sam into me to break his fall.  I bruised my backside and hit my head but immediately thought, "Get back on the horse."  I wanted Sam to learn that even if we have a fall, we have to try again.  Sam got back on the horse too.  Even with the fall, we all had a great time.  Claire and Dad are naturals.  It is funny because we have all (minus Bran) married city slickers.  

back on the horse

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Christmas day

 On Christmas day, we first eat scones and then line up from youngest to oldest.  We have realized that each Webb kid has married someone younger than themselves.  Craig loves that he
 blocks everyone behind him.  HA!

First, to the stockings.  All Sam asked Santa for was Mickey Mouse.  
Gratitude and surprises! 

Sam loved opening presents as well as distributing them to others.
Mom knitted a beautiful sweater and hat for Luke. 

Claire was the one behind the camera the whole time documenting this wonderful day! 

A bolo tie for Ryan, getting ready for Texas.
A fly fishing rod for Dad, getting ready for Utah.
Microwavable slippers for me, getting ready for  Colorado. 

Brady gave me some fart slime.  I really laughed forever and Claire caught it all.
I just couldn't stop.  It is kind of therapeutic! 

The mess

Before Christmas

We were so lucky to have a magical Christmas in Georgia with all my siblings and spouses.  I have had a hard time narrowing down the pictures to journal the trip so I made a few collages.  
We are so happy to be there.  
Christmas caroling at the Square on Christmas Eve. 
A long lived tradition.   It is so fun to share it with my life long
friend, Jenny, and her beautiful family.  

Acting out the nativity: Craig took over as donkey, Luke made his debut as
 baby Jesus, and Dad and Kazie were great  shepherds.  
We had very WISE wise men, Sam was the Angel but then decided he wanted to
be the Innkeeper too. I pondered these things in my heart.  What a wonderful tradition. 

My Mom has made 12 stockings!  2 new this year: Luke and Elizabeth!

Our home strung with lights!  

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Ryan's Reads 2012

Time for my annual "What did I read and what do I recommend" post. Its been another busy year with work, Sam, and little Luke in our life,  but I still found some time to read, and even read a little more than the year before. I've started more books than this but I don't finish a book if I don't like it (Cheyn is the opposite).  This year I averaged a book and a half a month, and I hope again  to read at least a book a month.  So here is what I finished this past year:

     Here is what I especially recommended grouped by topic:


Behind the Beautiful Forevers
Made the NY Times Top 10 Books of 2012 list.  Probably in the running for the best book of the year IMO, will will a pulitzer, already won the national book award.  Expect it to hit a lot of book groups in the next year or two.  So, its a nonfiction account of life in a Mumbai slum.  Its very well written, not too flowery, and really gives a peek into a contemporary place vastly different than most of what we experience.  I loved it, though it was heartbreaking and helped me really appreciate all of the comforts us fully developed nation types have.  Don't read it if you are clinically depressed. The story is fascinating, it reminds me of the book City of Joy from about 20 years ago.  You feel different after reading it.

The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson
Another episode in the life of Lyndon Johnson, this one is from about 1959-1964.   This is a great book because the historian who wrote it is a maestro.  Its not just about Lyndon Johnson.  Its about  time, and power, and deserves to be in all the top book list like it is (This ones in the NY Times top 10 as well).  Every page is packed and the author is in no rush, trying to cast a detailed portrait of the man especially focusing on his motives, drive, and inner experience.

To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion
Not a perfect book, but this history is a look at the build up and battles of WW1 focusing just not on the military leaders, but focusing on the war protesters and pacifists from the perspective of the English side.  I learned a lot about the modernization of warfare.  The main questions the author focuses on  in this book are "What is the point," "What happened," and "What was gained?"

Under the Black Flag
A quick history written in the 1990's about Piracy in the Caribbean, Colonies, Europe, and Africa.  The author focuses on pirates as portrayed in fiction and how their exploits compare to what piracy was really like hundreds of year before.  Fun to read about Blackbeard off the coast of North Carolina and all the thugs down in the Caribbean.

Thomas Paine: Enlightenment, Revolution, and the Birth of Modern Nations
You have to love the radical mouthpiece of the revolution.  What I didn't know about was his life after the American Revolution, and the afterlife body-napping.  This is a great read.  I'm not sure if this is the best bio around for him , but I loved it.


The Mormon People

A great general introduction to the LDS movement.  It focuses on the history of the Church, theology, adaptation, and contemporary Mormon practices.  A great book to give to an interested friend if they wanted to know about the church from an academic type perspective.

Understanding the Book of Mormon
A narrative analysis of the authors in the Book of Mormon.  Great to read why you are reading the Book of Mormon.  Helps you see the people in the book more as complex souls, making you think about Lehi's Family, Alma, Mormon , and Moroni in all new ways.   Its a dense book, makes a great reference for the book shelf.

Life's Lesson Learned
This book is written by Elder Oaks of the twelve about things he's learned during his lifetime from his upbringing, Church Service, and time as an academic and BYU president.  Its not regurgitated conference addresses. It has short chapters and is a thin book  full of great advice and conclusions from his experiences.

So there we go.  Now how about you?  Any recommendations you have from what you've read this past year?