The Preslar Family

The Preslar Family
November 2013

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Merry.....

After our very busy December, Christmas Eve almost seemed to sneak up on us.  Boo!  I'm here! But I have to say, despite its sudden arrival, we enjoyed a very pleasant day and I hope our Eves of Christmas in the future work out similarly to this one.  It was wonderful.

We began by sleeping in.

We next went on an outing with our dear friends, the Radants.  I don't  know how we are lucky enough to have begun an annual tradition with friends on a major holiday.  It seems that in most cases days like Christmas and its Eve are reserved for family only.  Don't get me wrong, I love my family dearly and deeply enjoy our traditions together.  But I am also blessed with many friends in this life and there are times when I would really like to spend a special holiday with them, but it rarely happens.  Happily, we have our friends the Radants who, like us, don't have any big family traditions during the day on Christmas Eve.  Krista and I have both bemoaned the fact that the day can really drag out and test the patience of both ourselves and our children, thus making it rather miserable.  You MUST have an activity on Christmas Eve, preferably one that wears out the kids in a hurry.

Last year it was sledding and caroling, this year we discovered the fun Elf-Scavenger Hunt held at Gardner Village.  Elf-displays are set up all over the charming shopping area and you get a list of clues to hunt down.  It's fun for the kids, lets the grownups wander around and chat, and you all get a cookie at the end and possibly a few minutes to give each other a few Facebook quizzes while munching away in the cafe.

Although this was entertaining, it wasn't enough.  So we headed down town for some seriously delicious barbecue at R&R Barbecue (corner of 3rd West and 6th South - do go see for yourself) where the adults over-ate while the kids complained and didn't eat much at all.  Well, at least my girls didn't eat. The mac'n'cheese wasn't kraft, the meat had spices....all the indicators of a good meal if you ask me, but the girls didn't go for it.  Oh well.  They had fries, so everyone was able to eat at least something.  Then we continued our journey to the Grand America Hotel where was held another Elf-Scavenger hunt of sorts, this time displayed in windows with very intricate detail.  Our friend Eugene Tachini was the designer and maker of the elves and their clothing and we were all very impressed.  The crowning display of the tour was the massive gingerbread house made of all real ingredients that sent its odors beckoning throughout the hotel.  Amazing.









In the evening we were invited to my sister's house.   Her home looked so beautiful, all lit up with warm yellow lights which glowed off of the red furniture and decorations.  It looked very cozy and inviting.  We agreed to make Korean food, since it is a favorite of both our families, and the kids were happy because they could eat all the seaweed they wanted.  I don't get my kids.  I mean, I'm thrilled that they enjoy exotic fare such a seaweed but how can they love that and not enjoy home made mac'n'cheese?  Don't get it.

Anyway, we had a very mellow evening enjoying dinner with my parents and then letting the kids make bead necklaces and frost cookies while the grown ups played for each other our favorite you tube videos we had seen over the year.  This may not sound like a fun activity but actually it is very entertaining.  What a nice evening.










We headed home at not too late an hour, miraculously, and got ready for bed.  Sweet Bitty decided she couldn't sleep until she wrote a note for Santa.  It is the CUTEST.




After some stories and snuggles we tucked everyone into bed for a not-long-enough winter's nap and then OF COURSE headed straight to bed ourselves for a long and restful sleep.....NOT.  Because that's how Christmas Eve is!  

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

More Holiday High-Lights

This is going to be a long one....

December Highlight #2

Best Gingerbread House EVER!!

That doesn't mean I don't have plenty of room for improvement.  I'm just saying that I really enjoyed carrying out our annual tradition of gingerbread house-building with the Mayfields, especially because I'm discovering that when your youngest child is 4 1/2, you might actually have a chance at being as obsessive as you would like to be while painstakingly creating your house of ginger and bread.  Which then just makes you see how much MORE obsessive you would like to be next year.  It is probably a sign of an illness that as soon as I'm through making a gingerbread house I immediately being anticipating the following Christmas so I can do it again.  CRAZY! 



Stomper took the fondant icing I wasn't using and instantly started sculpting reptiles with it
 

Worst part?  Didn't take a picture of the final product, which we tossed a couple of weeks ago.  

Sigh. It was great, ok?  All perfectly red and white and green!  You should have seen it!  It even had a red fondant portico over the wreath-hung front door.  (Now that I don't have a picture to prove it, you'll never know that it was quite lopsided.  But it was for dang-sure color coordinated.)

Oh well, guess it's just reason to make another one all the sooner next year!  Love you, Mayfields.



Highlight #3

Dancing and Singing

This was a good year for music.  I will keep it short, just want to say that we really enjoyed another fabulous cello concert put together by my splendid sister Margaret.  My kids had a rough December with all the practicing and busy schedules, so we didn't feel that prepared, but in a giant group of kids...well, it was hard to tell!  It was a fun night.  Except for Bundle, who basically spent the entire evening taking the same picture 1,000 times on my phone and doing seat-yoga in her chair.  






Also we enjoyed the MOST WONDERFUL night of singing with our friends the Bucherts.  They have this collection of notebooks just packed with music and momma Becca can play the piano really well, so you eat yummy soup and then gather around the piano and sing your heart out, at least as well as you can, to all sorts of Christmassy music, everything from Up On the Housetop to In the Bleak Midwinter.  So. Much. Fun.



Another very musical night that came at a bit of a cost to our family was the evening that Stomper performed in a play that was an extracurricular activity at school - for two months he spent at least two days a week after school until dinner time practicing this play with about 15 songs in it.  I was actually quite surprised that he chose to take part; not a single one of his gang of friends wanted to be in it.  But he decided to do it, and though there were a few days that he was so exhausted that he talked seriously of quitting, he pushed through.  It made those two months of homework miserable for us and his teacher pretty much needs to wipe December from the books (if only she would!)  but he really had a great time in the long run.  He was befriended by a small gang of sixth grade girls who look at least 5 years older than him.  That may explain the sudden stop in his threats to quit.....  I was glad when it ended honestly but it was fun to see and I was very proud of him for taking part and doing a great job.





Highlight #4

A Visit From the Southern Romneys, During which I Got to Spend A Lot of Time Holding a Cute Cute Baby

December zipped past as it is prone to do, and we didn't think we were going to get a chance to hold one of our favorite traditions, that of Waffles and Wassail, in which we eat waffles, drink no wassail, and watch A Muppet Christmas Carol.  Happily for us, the Southern Romneys decided to brave a trip up north despite snow (Our valley stayed white all December long!!  How I LOVE a white Christmas!) and the difficulties of traveling with a small baby to come see us.  It was the weekend before Christmas, and we made the most of it with zoo trips (duh, of course), sledding, gathering with family, and of course our Muppet movie tradition.  It was such a nice way to spend the weekend before Christmas.  What a pleasure it is to have brothers and sisters I am close to, and for our kids to love their cousins.  I just love it and them.  








The Actual Waffles night - we had a surprise when my sister was able to come with all three of her teenage girls plus one boyfriend plus one roommate - we were packed in but it worked and was even more fun than we expected. 






You can just catch Bundle kicking Bitty down the hill







To Be Continued!!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Just a Bit BEHIND...

Oh HI! Yes, I remember this blog.  Let's see, I guess a few things have happened in the PAST MONTH (give or take a couple of weeks...) since I have blogged....things like oh ya'know CHRISTMAS.

How on earth am I ever going to catch up on everything?

Let's face it, there is no way.  So I think I'm just going to do some brief highlights, like this:

December Highlight #1:

The Bear Lake Tree-Hunting Trip

We almost didn't make it on our annual trip this year - what with Thanksgiving being quite late, and the Ward Christmas Party happening, December filled up SO FAST and we were SO BUSY and SO TIRED....(you may be hearing that from me a lot over the next few posts).  We didn't really have a weekend that was completely free.  But we decided to just squash the trip in there and though it made things even more hectic, I wouldn't have missed it.  I love the Burnetts, I love that cabin, I love hunting for trees, I love the whole trip.

So.  Friday night was the ward Christmas party.  Saturday morning was a ward primary party, of which I was partially in charge.  (Seriously, months ago when we were planning the calendar it didn't seem that crazy but I was a loon to have thought so.)  Troy was out of town, and so after the ward party, I packed up the car so that we could leave for Bear Lake straight from the primary party in the morning.  It was a snowy weekend, which made things very Christmassy, but slightly alarming on the drive up.

Pretty much as soon as we got to the cabin we headed out with the Burnetts to go find a tree - Troy's plane was landing that afternoon and he'd be driving up by the evening time.  (He was in our van so the drive was MUCH scarier for him!)   I was anxious to pick out our tree all by myself but I think I did a good job - our tree was tall and lovely.  Yay me.

We had to leave the next day, but as always it was just such an enjoyable weekend and I hope we do this every year till I'm dead.










LOOKIE LOOKIE I actually posted!  If it seems a little rushed, that's because it was.  The family is at this very moment getting into the car to drive to St. George for a weekend with our family and blessing a new baby, adding another items on my list of things that need posting.  I will get there. I'm just so happy I actually posted SOMETHING.