Saturday, January 24, 2009

What do you do when -13* is the low and 2* is the high?

Go see ice sculptures at the St. Paul Winter Carnival, of course. Make sure you go for the marshmallow-look with at least four or five layers of warmth.

Pandora's Box
The Last Supper

Sunday, January 18, 2009

A BIG Little Act of Kindness!!!

It's no secret; Minnesota can get cold, really cold. I'm talking about a coldness that you can't even really describe. It would be like trying to describe how the Holy Ghost feels to someone who hasn't recognized or defined those feelings before - except sort of the opposite because the Holy Ghost is warm and comforting and this cold is, well, cold and miserable.

Anyway, the point of this post is not to focus on the miserableness of how awful it was to walk 1/2 mile to the bus stop in -20 degree weather, miss the bus by 5 seconds, walk home, and then finally catch a few different buses to get to work when my car didn't start on a really cold day.

The point of this post is to share my gratitude for several blessings we enjoy that we often take for granted because of their abundance.

My biggest blessing that day was my friend, Sue, from work. When she heard of my bus adventure in the arctic temperatures, she urged me to accept a ride home (even though she risked being late for a dinner with her husband) so I wouldn't have to brave the cold again. Though I'm a pretty independent person, that was an offer I couldn't refuse. She saved me an hour of arctic winds and chill getting home and an hour of thawing out once I did. I am so grateful for her kindness!!!

So, join with me in making a list of blessings to remember during really cold winters. I'll read your comments, and add them to this list.

The Grateful Even During Winter List:

good friends
kind strangers
cars that have heaters that work sometimes
cars that get us around quickly even when the heater doesn't work
warm socks
blue fleece pants that fit under my work slacks
green house plants that bring vibrancy to a grayish winter world
fuzzy warm socks
heated apartment - and it's included in the rent :)
only fond memories of spring, summer and autumn
our Christmas tree is still up
online yoga class
the wind-proof mittens Pedro made me (yes, he actually sewed me polartec fleece mittens)
Hot Chocolate (Ki)
cuddling with my husband (Ki)
hot soup and bread bowls (Bla)
snuggling up to your personal space heater aka your husband (Bla)
electric can openers (Brit)

I would love to know what you are grateful for during the winter; please send your comments.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

the end and the beginning

We enjoyed the end of 2008 in Utah with family and friends. It was so good to see so many of you. You have no idea how good. Yes, the roads were a bit crazy at times, but it was definitely worth it.

We began 2009 playing volleyball with family (and Dallin). What a great way to start the new year. Now, I'm back at work and Pedro is enjoying his free days before his second semester of law school starts in two weeks.

Highlights from our two weeks in Utah:
  • talking to my missionary brother - Brycen, uh, Elder Mills - on the phone
  • shopping with my sisters
  • bowling with Pedro's family
  • eating breakfast and chatting with Grandma and Grandpa Miles - they are so nice
  • going to Relief Society with Grandma, Alma, Gabby and Darla (i love my nursery kids, now Sunbeams, but RS was nice)
  • getting special fabric scissors in my stocking (Pedro - he is sewing a light-weight backpacking quilt)
  • chatting with golden friends at a Christmas Eve brunch
  • seeing Kiley's adorable little Jake
  • finding out Nate and Darcy are going to be a papa and a mama
  • snowshoeing with my dad and Pedro
  • babysitting for a good friend - the one who taught me how to make Dutch Apple Pie
  • winning hands-down in a game of Rook
  • eating my mom's food
  • watching my family open their Christmas presents and get so excited
  • hiking/snowshoeing Big Baldy mountain with Pedro in 40-degree weather - it was like a summer holiday
  • watching movies and lots of football (Pedro)
  • playing volleyball with my family
  • Getting beat by my Dad in a 2-on-1 (Dev & I vs. Dad) basketball game (still has his amazing outside shot)
  • barely beating Devan and Brette in a game of pool, once (Devan won pretty much every other time)
  • Around-the-world ping pong
  • chatting with Mom
  • snowboarding at Little Beav (Pedro)
  • being the recipient of such generosity
  • tying Brette's amazing patch-work quilt while watching Pride and Prejudice
  • Shoveling snow with my dad (it was sort of nostalgic, okay, give me a break)
  • lots of other things I just can't remember right now