Sunday, January 15, 2017

Powder-Perfect Staycation

Last weekend we enjoyed a powder-perfect staycation and got to experience the very best of Utah skiing!

The whole staycation thing started a few years ago when we were on vacation in Breckenridge, Colorado. Breck's base is at like 9,500 feet, was freezing, and the snow was dumping in Utah. We looked at each other and said, "why the heck did we ever leave Utah?!?" and since then we've taken time every year to stay at a different Utah resort and enjoy the best our home state has to offer.

This year we did the Alta/Snowbird ski in/ski out condo thing and it was perfect. The snow was amazing (got over 20" while we were there) and the condo had a hot tub. It was everything you need in a ski vacation.

We skied two days each at Alta and Snowbird and after chasing my kids down both mountains for four straight days I can testify: there are few greater joys than ripping the black diamonds with your kiddos. I freaking love how well these kids ski and their fearless attitudes toward the snow!

Daddy leads the way
Sasha shoots the chutes...
...and rips the groom

We also had plenty of condo time to play games, soak in the hot tub, eat tons of snacks, and do puzzles. It was nice to have a comfortable, convenient place to unwind after a big day on the slopes.

Puzzles with Grammy

Of course, the only reason to rest up is so that you can hit the pow afresh the next morning, right?!?

Don't worry, we saved a little powder for you, too. Come on out to Utah!

Monday, January 2, 2017

2017's Stellar Start

The year is still young, but judging by our new year's activities, 2017 is looking pretty darn great!

Our celebration started with a friend's wedding. We dress up well...

...but the true colors do eventually shine through! WanYing and Ben in particular had a wonderful time playing a very convincing World's Tallest Man using Daddy's winter coat.

And then it was off to party with some of our dearest friends! We greeted the new year with card games, tons of food, and a big old box of poppers. It was perfect.

We are so blessed to have such wonderful friends in our lives!
New Year's Day brought snuggle naps in the coordinating Mermaid Tail blankets Daddy got us for Christmas

And New Year's Day continued brought 10" of fresh snow and a day of skiing at Deer Valley! We skied every glade and tree run we could find and had a grand time doing it.



We wish you and yours peace, grace, joy, and truth this year. And snow, lots and lots of snow.

Friday, December 30, 2016

A New Adventure in Serving: Joining the Creating a Family Board

Spoiler alert: I tend to stay busy. Very busy. Arguably too busy. I have a wonderful hubby and four exuberant kids. I enjoy a full-time job at an aggressively growing company. I lead an annual orphanage work trip to Mexico. I'm a committed and active member of the CenterPoint Church family. I write for Cycling Utah and help lead Team Cycle4Cure. I cycle, camp, and ski as much as I can. Life is full and grand.

And I'm proud to announce that I'll begin 2017 serving the adoption and infertility community on the Board of Directors for Creating a Family!

Creating a Family is the most popular and prolific foundation in the U.S. for adoption and infertility education. The resources found on http://creatingafamily.org have made a difference to countless thousands of families - and especially to my own! There aren't many organizations I am invested enough in to make a step like this (I can only think of two - church and Creating a Family!), so you know this must be a big deal to me.

My journey with Creating a Family started when Steve and I read the director, Dawn Davenport's, wonderful book, The Complete Book of International Adoption as we were taking our first baby steps toward Sasha's adoption. We jived well with Dawn's approach and learned so much from the book that it became our Bible throughout both girls' adoption processes and our gateway into the amazing resources on http://creatingafamily.org. Creating a Family strives to provide a well-balanced and education-focused voice in adoption, celebrating the joys of the journey and acknowledging the complexities and difficulties and yuck that often arise. It's an amazing resource.

I then had the joy of getting to know Dawn personally five years ago on our first trip to the Hogar de Amor orphanage in Colima, Mexico. As I was looking for a way that Sam, Ben, and I could serve together, I reached out on the Creating a Family Facebook group to see if anybody had a good experience with a similar trip. Dawn responded back and after several conversations offered to help me lead a trip!

Five years later the trip is still going strong and my love and respect for Dawn grows every year. She is a wise and compassionate woman who is deeply committed to the adoption and infertility community and I am grateful for her friendship and mentorship.

And now I get to serve in a whole new way as a member of the Creating a Family board! I'm so excited to see how I'll learn and grow in this new position and, at the same time, give back to an organization that has given me so much.

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