Thursday, December 23, 2010

Our Christmas Letter-just in case...

Murphy’s Top 10 for 2010

1. Teaching the boys the value of a dollar by raising chickens and selling their eggs. If they don’t watch it we’ll start bagging chickenure and sell it too……

2. The miracle and blessing of modern medicine…last year at this time we were concerned a dear friend would never be whole again (he had the whipple procedure, as seen on Grey’s Anatomy, and a fistula, also as seen on Grey’s Anatomy) and this year we are celebrating the news they are having twins!

3. We all appreciate Mychel’s new camera and her talents in using it. She was especially generous by being our family photographer while we were in Utah for almost a month.

4. Spring break in FL with the Clarks, wave runners, concerts on the beach, delicious food, grilling at sunset overlooking the bay, great friends.

5. Labor Day was awesome because we got to have Mychel home for a 4 day visit. It was a last minute bonus and that made it all the more fun.

6. Gary, Will and Zac attend Boy Scout summer camp and had a great time. Gary did some training while the boys earned merit badges. Will and Zac earned their star rank and Gary began his Wood Badge journey. Shelice enjoyed some quiet weekends alones (only downside was having to take care of all animals herself 1 dog, 1 cat, 26 chickens.)

7. Summer in Utah visiting family and celebrating the 4th of July with them, attending the temple, Nephi Pageant, time with friends, a quick trip to Rexburg and wonderful week at Bear Lake. Bear Lake included; wake boarding, tubing, chocolate covered raspberries, shakes and time with family.

8. Mychel sang an a capella solo of If the Savior Stood Beside Me at a LDSBC devotional and thanks to her new iPhone we got to hear it. Then she sang at a CES fireside, broadcast to the whole world, and thanks to the internet we got to see and hear her.

9. Gary’s still employed and now also has full time volunteer job…Scoutmaster extraordinaire. He loves BSA so much he found a way to get Shelice involved too. She’s a Unit Commissioner.

10. Amazing, generous, patient, thoughtful friends and family who enrich our lives and make us better people. We love you all dearly!  Yes, we mean you……..I know.

Saturday, December 18, 2010


If you need Christmas spirit this is not the place to find it. If you have extra, please feel free to share.

Obviously I didn't learn something from last Christmas. See here and here if you'd a review.  We started off pretty good. We got Mychel here early to surprise her dad for his birthday.  December 15th is a rough day to have a birthday...early in our marriage it was finals, there is often a Christmas party on it, it just easily gets lost in all the other holiday happenings. I'm at less than 50% for making it a special day. This year since it fell on a Wednesday, ie scout night, Mychel and I hatched a plan to throw a surprise party at church.  Then we found our Gary's parents should be arriving on his birthday...Perfect! or so we thought.

Within hours of arriving Bea (Gar's mom) was in the emergency room. A few hours later she was admitted. Friday morning they tell us they think she's had a heart attack. Now we're waiting for a heart cath on Monday. Not the warm, cozy, relaxed family filled Christmas I'd been dreaming of. Now our days revolve around waiting for news and driving back and forth to the hospital. The good news is that she is looking a little better each day and we are so grateful that we can visit many times a day and help Bea rest a little easier knowing we're looking after Bill (Gar's dad).

Christmas baking may become New Year's baking. Christmas cards will hopefully be sent out before the New Year. Maybe we'll go with Russian New Year for our Christmas presents. I know in the scheme of things none of that really matters. It's just that since our first Christmas without Nathan, Christmas has become a time filled with emotional landmines for us. Gratefully, each year it's gotten a little better. I was ready to really feel Christmas again, to give my children the traditions we've only had hit and miss over the last six years, and to live in this moment and feel joy.

Obviously Heavenly Father has other plans, so I will trust we will have the Christmas we need. Even if it's not the one I was dreaming of...

Monday, December 6, 2010

What's up you ask?

Chickens and children, that's been covered.
BSA, noted.
I've been MIA, ya no good excuses come to mind.

That just leaves me with the reality that.....
It's Christmas letter time....
serious love/hate relationship happenin' there.

I feel let down when I get a Christmas card with no note and/or no picture so I feel compelled to include at lease one or the other, most times both. Last year I chose guilt over the stress and didn't do anything. I tried to tell myself, absence makes the heart grow fonder...but since the reality is that absence makes us forget, I have a two year limit on not making contact.

Soooo like it or not, it's that time again! I have made the executive decision that there we will no picture, at least not a recent one. We can't have a picture without our Miss M and she won't be here for awhile yet. There will be a little surprise, though. Since the only people who will ever read this will be people who will get a card I won't spoil it. 

Hey, bonus for me, it just dawned on me that because I've been MIA our note won't just be a blog recap...ya that's what I was planning all along! I love it when a plan comes together.