Monday, December 31, 2012

A Year in the Life {2012}

Oh what a wonderful year!

This year was so wonderful. If I could do 2012 over again I would in a heart beat. Here is a little recap:

Adam had a fantastic year in his career. In April, he made the decision to switch schools and applied for a teaching position at Forbuss Elementary school. Although it was sad to say goodbye to Tanaka, this change has proven to be a huge blessing in Adam's career. Doors have been open, opportunities presented, and he feels so much happier and more validated. Whats more, he works less than a mile from home which is a huge blessing for us. Adam's favorite part of 2012: our trip to Hawaii and watching Paige develop into her own person.

Me(lissa) I've had a fantastic year as well. I basically made three goals at the beginning of 2012. Those were to get fit, read 50 books, and run a half marathon. I was able to do all of those things and I feel that I've grown tremendously over this past year. One of the things I feel I've learned is to mourn with those that mourn. Several of my friends have gone through really difficult things this year, and my testimony in our Heavenly Father's love and our Saviors atonement has grown. My favorite part of 2012 was of course Hawaii, but also, I echo Adam's statement, it has been a privilege to watch Paige grow into this person who belongs to us. She has such a wonderful personality. Two years ago this very night (New Years Eve) we learned that I was pregnant with her and I feel that of the four of us, she's done the most growing from a cute little lump on the floor to the darling little girl she is now...more on Paige later.

Hannah: I think Hannah's biggest thing this year has to have been potty training. She has done an awesome job with that. Of course she is super smart and has always been a highly capable person. She love princesses, and Disneyland. She loves playing with her friends and using her imagination. She loves preschool and working with her hands. She is an independent woman! She loves to do things on her own timeline. At preschool, she sometimes wanders off to play toys by herself, rather than learn. We'll work on that...Hannah is such a sweet kid. She loves everyone and is enthusiastic about everything. She is very expressive and has so much joy. She is an amazing big sister. She is always watching out for Paige and making sure her needs are met. We are in a really good place right now together.

Paige: What can I say about my sweetheart. She is such a joy and has so much joy. When she first joined our family, I wondered what place she would fill. I felt like the three of us fit together in a perfect puzzle and I wondered if our family would ever feel the same again. Paige completes the puzzle in a way I never imagined. She is the spark of joy we never knew was missing. Hannah loves her sister so much and Paige loves Hannah too. Paige has grown so much in the past four months I can hardly recognize her. She has the funniest sense of humor and she fits right in. Just this afternoon she kept singing "look down, look down, look down..." I asked Adam if she was singing what I thought she was singing. Hannah said "She's singing Look down, look down, your standing in your gwave." Both my girls were singing songs from Les Mis. It cracked me up. What 16 month old kid sings Les Miserables? She is smart, quick, and sweet. Her favorite things are soft and fluffy and she loves to cuddle.

We were able to go to Hawaii for a week long adventure, California (Disneyland and the beach) twice, we saw Allie and Jeff and Sean and Lindsey get married, we paid off our car and paid off all of our credit cards, our AC broke, we went camping, we played hard, we worked hard, and we loved each other a lot.

Thanks for a great year 2012! I wonder what 2013 has in store :)

And for record keeping sake, my completed reading list 2012:

*I Capture the Castle by Doddie Smith

*Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling

*The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

*The Distant Hours by Kate Morton

Enders Game by
 Orson Scott Card

*The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

The Girl who was on Fire by Various YA Authors

*Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

by Suzanne Collins

Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley

Hate List by Jennifer Brown

Divergent by Veronica Roth

The Future of Us by Jay Asher

***Heaven is Here by Stephanie Nielson

*The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

House Rules by Jodi Picoult

*Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling

*The Fault in our Stars by John Green

Before I go to Sleep by SJ Watson

Angus, Thongs, and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison

*The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

Paper Towns by John Green

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll

*Diary of a Young Girl by Ann Frank

***Let it Go by Chris Williams

*Looking for Alaska by John Green

* The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

The People Code by Dr. Taylor Hartman

*Persepolis Volume 1 by Marjane Satrapi

*Persepolis Volume 2 by Marjane Satrapi

1984 by George Orwell

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Steven Chobosky

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson

*Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K .Rowling

*True Sisters by Sandra Dallas

*The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupery

Strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louise Stevenson

*The Fire of the Covenant by Gerald Lund

An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

*Where We Belong by Emily Giffin

Miracle at the Museum of Broken Hearts by Talli Roland

The Letter by Marie Tillman

Fairy Tale Interrupted by RoseMarie Terrizino

*Unwind by Neal Shuesterman

Shiver by Maggie Svsdkalkdjflkd (something I'm not going to look up in this exact moment)

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

*Doctrine and Covenants

*Les Miserables by Victor Hugo

Thursday, December 27, 2012

A Few Weeks in the Life, Christmas, and a Wedding {12/10-12/27}

What a wonderful Christmas season for the Turney Family. Here are the highlights:

On Friday the 14th, Hannah had her preschool friends over for a Christmas party. As always Brandee was fantastic, pulling together quite a fun project for the kids to accomplish. Stace read some wonderful stories and the kids mainly just enjoyed each others company. I got my hair cut by the lovely and talented Jill Geeb in preparation for the wedding. This was the day of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting which totally unhinged me. We were supposed to do our traditional Turney Family Christmas Eve (since we open gifts before we leave for the holidays) but we were all kind of off and it didn't really happen. 

Saturday the 15th we opened all our gifts to each other and from the Turney's. It was really a lot of fun and we got some great things (like our TV that we got in September lol, along with lots of new Blu Rays to watch on it). The girls had a blast and it made me happy to see them get so excited over opening gifts. We drove to Utah and were very anxious to get to Grandma and Grandpa. We met up with them in Salt Lake and ate dinner/walked around to see the lights on Temple Square. 

Sunday the 16th Adam and I, along with my mom and Meg (and many cousins) got to see the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas concert featuring Alfie Boe and Tom Brokaw. It was incredible. My favorite part was the Candy Bomber story, and Alfie Boe singing "Bring Him Home." 

Tuesday the 18th was the wedding. It was a magnificent day. I've never seen my brother so happy and I've never seen a more beautiful bride. It was such a wonderful day as a big sister. I'm so proud of both of them and I love them both very much. Adam unfortunately had to leave us this day, after the wedding luncheon so he flew home before the reception but it was lovely. 

Wednesday-Thursday Hannah got sick. She had a stomach bug and there is nothing worse than watching your children be in pain. She was a wonderful sport about it, and seemed to be much better on Thursday when we all took her to City Creek. She was fine for the most part but threw up at the food court after we'd shopped and played for a couple hours. She was so sad to leave though. 

Saturday the 22st was Lesley's annual family Christmas party, a highlight of the year. We picked Adam up from the airport and took him back to City Creek (Hannah was dying to go back). We had a lot of fun there going to the dinosaur play area, anthropology, and the Disney Store. After that we drove our kids up to see the Bountiful Temple so they could see where we were married. It really is a beautiful temple. The party was ridiculously awesome. My family is pretty much the best one out there and we all seem to enjoy each other a lot. Hannah and Paige both did well seeing Santa and Hannah even preformed Child of God at the talent show. It was pretty cute. Hannah's favorite part was being with her "cousins" and playing toys. Paige was super sweet but wanted Grandma Margie mostly. 

Sunday the 23nd was the Ensign family party. We all had a great time at the Bean's new home. I also love my Ensign family an insane amount and I think more than ever, this trip to Utah has given me an appreciation for my stable and loving background. I have four amazing grandparents, loving aunts and uncles, and wonderful cousins. Sean and Linds got back from their honeymoon and we enjoyed spending more time with them.

Monday was of course Christmas Eve. My favorite day of the year. Usually we spend the afternoon picking a movie to go to but because we had the kids, we went to some friends of my parents who have a sweet home theater set up in their basement and watched Home Alone 2. They were super awesome, letting us come over, making us popcorn and cookies, and they even set up a Christmas game for us. That evening we had our traditional crab and steak dinner (sans the chicken, which was alright). It was amazing. Dad told his famous Santa encounter story, the girls helped telling the nativity story with Grandma Margie's nativity from Bethlehem, and then it was off to bed for the girls while we watched "It's a Wonderful Life." It really is. 

Christmas was amazing. Hannah has been dying for a doll house, which Grandma and Grandpa got for her and Paige to share. We went to the Grandparent's Marsden and hung out with our awesome family again for the third time that week. Then we came home, met up with the new Mr. and Mrs. Marsden and just hung around all afternoon, the nine of us. Probably one of the best Christmases I've ever had. 

The 26th was Les Miserables. I've been dying for 22 years to see this made into a movie. I've seen it on stage 4 times, and I got about 60% into the giant book before I saw the movie. It was an incredible movie experience, although Adam wanted to take me home because I was so emotional. By so emotional I mean body wracking sobs, using up half a toilet paper roll on my tears, and full on blubbering  He was probably pretty embarrassed, but it was an amazing experience. We also went to see the newly weds open gifts and spend time with the Howells. It was a lot of fun. 

Today is the 27th and we drove home to Las Vegas. I'm always super emotional when we drive home. I always have felt like I'm the outsider of my family and it doesn't help living out of state. It's especially hard to leave because my girls get so sad. Hannah was frantic because she hadn't yet made a snow angel so she got a last minute one in as we left. 

Like I said (and as you can see) it was a great holiday season and I'm grateful we had the opportunity to have it :)