Friday, September 12, 2014

Catching Up to the Present

August and up until now was pretty much a blur of the fun of wedding planning, showers, addressing hundreds of envelopes and getting our house ready for the big event!  The actual wedding and wedding dinner is on October 9th and the wedding reception is at our house on the 10th. After living in our new house for six years, there are quite a few things that need to be repaired and prepared in order to pull off an event with 350 people!

Charity’s dear friends from High School pulled off a stellar shower with spectacular food, gifts and decorations in a back yard straight out of The Garden of Eden. It was so fun for me to pull a “Mom Bomb” and see all those cute friends again, most of whom are now married with babies!

image

image

Handmade cookies to die for!

image

A fun game included previously asking Ian answers to questions about their relationship and Charity was supposed to match his answer. Even though she got most of them right, she had to poke a marshmallow in her mouth for every one she got wrong. There were just enough wrong answers to make her look like a chipmunk preparing for winter! Note her darling friend Andrea, just about to deliver her fourth boy!

image

 

These two were born on the same day and their mothers just happened to be dear friends! 

image

What an outstanding group of girls!

image

 

On our second stop looking for wedding dresses, she managed to find the perfect “vintage” dress which looks fabulous on her! With the final alternations being finished on her next visit to Utah, we are glad to have that most important event “in our pocket”.  She found the perfect shoes and headpiece and only has the veil to go!

She ordered this cute bunting from England to welcome the guests on the front porch:

image

…and found vases which have been spray-painted in “her colors”

image

Our wonderful friend and caretaker Eric took his life in his hands and installed 400 bistro lights along the roofline to prepare for the big event. That along with climbing up the to the bark grass on the ceiling to make some repairs and replace chandelier lights, we’re glad he’s still alive!

image

image

image

He is also overseeing the painting of the exterior of the house since it has turned a big pink/purple with the help of the sun over the years.

image

We’re pulling out picture frames for displaying pictures….

image

 

In between events we have managed to slip in a few “extracurricular” activities outside of the wedding along the way….which included a horse ride with our great friends the Wolffs to Paris Peak on a beautiful August day:

image

One day included driving on the freeway with a sight to behold!  All that rain we’ve been having has its perks!

image

A trip to the Philadelphia Cricket Club so Rick could play in a National Grass Court Tennis Tournament was lots of fun! 

image

 

He won his first match in a 3rd set tie breaker!

image

And our cute sons surprised us the next day by renting a car and driving down from NYC on a busy work day to see their dad play in the tournament.  SO FUN!  Tal called Eli the night before and said, “How many times has dad been there for our ball games? Let’s go for it!”  What great guys. Their dad was so happy to see them. Luckily he lost because we couldn’t stay another day.

 

image

Because we had ticket to the US Open:

image

image

Pretty fun!  I wasn’t feeling too well and finally diagnosed myself with shingles. Darn stuff! But it was a pretty light case and I’m okay!

We visited the 9/11 Memorial which was sobering but also inspiring. This quote is fashioned from steel from the original buildings:

image

And if this enormous retaining wall on the left that holds back the Hudson River under the buildings had burst, the disaster would have been so much worse!

image

The amazing reflecting pools that pour down into the footprints of the original building are incredible!

image

We found our new book on the shelves of an enormous Barnes and Noble in the city:

image

After seeing our adorable Granddaughter Zara, her parents and other grandparents who just happened to be visiting, waiting for their 3rd mission call as senior missionaries to Brazil, we headed back to the Tennis and then straight to the airport. We had stayed with Talmadge who was kind enough to lend us his bed while he slept on a blow-up mattress since his wife and daughter were in Switzerland. It was so fun to spend some quality time with he and Eli and Julie who “own” NYC! Smile

Back to the wedding!  Another lovely Bridal Shower at City Creek which was a little English Tea Party with about 35 women and girls, half from each side of the family. What fun we had getting to know Ian’s side of the family as each person offered a little advice for Charity as they gave their gift. Ian and Rick joined us at the end and it was a memorable afternoon, partly because the elevator didn’t work and it was crazy trying to get grandmas and a young woman on crutches to the room safely.

image 

image

 

As I saw Charity and Ian sitting there together under the letters that Charity had on her bedroom wall for many years and as they told their fun engagement story, I realized that the writing on her wall had finally come true!

image

We also visited the beautiful setting for their wedding dinner…..

image 

And Saren and Eliza and Ian’s mom, two sisters, brother and sister-in-law joined us for dinner and to help address 1200 envelopes. As it turned out we couldn’t stuff them, stamp them and seal them because the printer had left the 4 off of our address which is 4545, the the return address printed in foil on the back said 545. The poor printer had to hand feed all those invitations through the printer one at a time to correct the mistake!  Weddings! 

Speaking of weddings, my wonderful sister’s youngest son Tony got married on Monday and we had fun with the Carvers at their splendid celebration!

image

So sorry I didn’t get the spectacular bride!  But we love those Carvers!

image

image

The next night we had a dinner party for 24 with my Book Club at our house. It was so fun to see everyone. The husbands only come once a year. It was a great way to have a deadline to get a lot of things done on the house for the wedding.  Only half the house got painted but we got so many other little details out of the way for the wedding.

I took pictures of the set-up and the flowers and then forgot to take pictures of the people!  Too busy cooking!

image

image

 

So upward and onward!  In less than a month this terrific wedding will all be just a wonderful memory! 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Last Favorite Memories from Bear Lake

So many treasured memories are lost if they aren’t captured in pictures. Here are just a few to remind myself a few of the thousand moments of laughter and joy from those precious weeks before I close the chapter on this year’s reunion and we go on to what’s happened since:

Lucy’s excitement of her once-in-a-lifetime experience of making her treasure chest with Grandfather:

image

Her toe tells it all:

image

Kids soup:

image

The literally hundreds of projects that Jonah completed for us by the end of their visit (how we got him to look that scary but cute, I’ll never know! )

image

Quiet magic bonding moments with people who don’t get to see each other very often:

image

The incredible packing job done by Jonah and Aja as they left for their long journey to the San Juan Islands in their Greasel. Some are happier than others about going. Maybe it has something to do with the accommodations on the way Smile.

image 

The middle seat is a little easier:

image

Group 2 saying goodbye:

image

Continuing fun in the sun and the sand:

image

image

image

image

 

Isaac’s birthday party:

image

On the way to Bloomington Lake…

image

When Saydi’s car overheated and we crammed six kids in the back of the Smurf:

image

Having so much fun with our Miracle Baby:

image

Watching Charlie pull up on skiis for the first time ever from the balcony of the Bamboo House. And on the GOLD! 

image

A splendid party for Annina that ended with “throw the kid on the blanket”!

image

Sadly packing up the Sprinter:

image 

Remembering these Mermaids created by Elsie in anticipation of Grammie Camp! I love me! What a mind this child has!

image

The coveted Spiritual Creation Award given by Talmadge every year:

image

And remembering our raucous reunion:

image

IT WAS A GREAT BIG SLICE OF HEAVEN!