Saturday, January 11, 2014

December 2013 Highlights

Our colds continued on through December. The week before Christmas they really got bad, whether the old cold or a new one, we don't know. They were finally bad enough for us to go into Insta-care to see if we had infections. Paul had fluid in his lungs, but not pneumonia. Meanwhile, December was a busy month.

December started out with a birthday and a trip to San Francisco (documented on a separate blog). Kohler turned 9 on December 2nd. We weren't able to join him in his celebration, but we did wish him a happy birthday before we flew out to San Francisco.

The Relief Society had a special activity in December called "Christmas with the Prophets". The idea came from a book of that title which talks about the Christmas traditions of our ladder-day prophets. They had a special dinner during which several of the sisters read Christmas stories of each of the prophets. Diane's creativity shines again with Andrea's help on the committee. It was a good activity to bring the spirit of Christmas to the season.

Table settings for Relief Society dinner
Displays of Ladder-day prophets
Christmas is the time for music. We won the lottery and received four tickets to see the Tabernacle Choir and orchestra Christmas concert at the conference center in Salt Lake. We invited Steve and Lisa to meet us in Salt Lake, have dinner with us (at P. F. Changs who has a gluten-free menu), and attend the concert. It was a wonderful experience.
Our gluten-free Chinese dinner
Christmas at Temple Square
Alyssa and Andrea had their orchestra concert. The orchestra was made up of three elementary schools in the area. It was a lot of fun even though many of the orchestra members have only been playing their instruments for a few months. 
Fabulous cello section of the elementary school orchestra
Besides instrumental music we had some choral music for Christmas. All the students at Hillcrest Elementary School gave a concert at the middle school. That included three of our grandchildren, Lauren, Kohler, and Alyssa. 
Lauren (black dress) sings with the 1st grade choir
Kohler (center front) sings with the 3rd grade choir
Alyssa sings a solo with the 5th grade choir
Christmas brings family traditions. It started with a nativity play written by Alyssa and performed by Alyssa, Kohler, Lauren, and Brynlie. Mary (Brynlie) couldn't quite keep the balloon under her shirt. The play even included a shepherd's lamb (Smokie).
Nativity play
One fun tradition Andrea brought from her mission to Germany was "Advent". On each of the four Sundays leading into Christmas they light a candle on an advent wreath. On the fourth advent (the Sunday before Christmas) they have a special spiritual program. This replaced our normal Christmas Eve program. Each of the family were able to play a Christmas piece on the piano (or on the organ for Diane). This was followed by another Christmas play.
Andrea and Alyssa on cellos
The Nativity
One of the Christmas traditions we enjoy in Logan is going downtown and look at the gingerbread houses on display in several of the stores. Some of them are quite elaborate. 
The family looking at gingerbread houses
Capital Theater
Old woman and the shoe
As well as looking at gingerbread houses we had a lot of fun.
Ride 'em cowboy
You aren't really going to try this are you?
Well, Christmas has come and gone with pajamas for Christmas Eve and presents for Christmas day. 
Happy family models pajamas
Present time

Well, it has been a good month (other than colds) and an adventurious year. It makes us wonder what the new year will bring.

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