Hiking at Walnut Canyon & Snow Day on Christmas Eve at Flagstaff

From Christmas at Sedona 2010

Thankfully we have pictures of our beautiful Walnut Canyon and river hikes!

Montezuma's Well

We saw Montezuma's well as well!

On Christmas eve, we drove up to Flagstaff because hubby called and found out there was 1-inch of snow.....so we went and played with snow by the side of the road! The kids even got pretty snow gloves (esp. Abbie's pretty purple one....$20!) Everyone had fun, esp. when they attacked me (the photographer) viciously by plummetting snow at me!

We also tried to make a snowman but it didn't work out too well....not enough snow! They made snow angels on the ground too!


8 day Sedona Christmas Escape (^_^)

Montezuma's Castle in Sedona, AZ

This year's Christmas we have decided to go to Sedona, AZ. People asked, "Do you have relatives there?" or, "Are you guys going skiing in AZ?" But our answers are, "No.....we just got a good time-share deal from the coworker friend!" It was just $288 (including tax) for 8 days! So though we're not sure what we'll do there....besides eating lots of snacks, homemade soups/noodles/ spaghetti/curry rice, and maybe hiking alittle....we packed our belongings and headed out for our 8 hour drive. It rained when we left on 12/18, and it rained and flooded on our way back on 12/25, and from what I saw on the weather channel, it was Noah's Ark in Southern Cal the whole week we were gone!

The kids watched LOTS of SpongeBob! I watched my chinese soaps w/laptop right below

Unfortunately, we disovered we lost one scandisk containing days 1-4 of our trip, so our "Toozigoot" native ruins pictures and Sedona mountain/river pictures went missing. But thankfully we still had hubby and boy's hiking pictures, our Montezuma Castle Nat'l Monument pictures, and Red River rock hiking pictures too!

Daddy and Abbie by the river

The kids fought most of the way to and back, and in the hotel as well. That was also why I hid myself in the bathroom hot tub, enjoying rare luxuries of hot baths alone. When I stepped out of the tub, my head felt heavy and I decided to get some water. I went to the kitchen and 'while pouring water, slumped over on the granite countertop. Hubby rushed over and brought me to the bedroom where I felt oxygen go inside my head agan as soon as I laid down. I guess it was anemia + elevation + dehydration! So remember to drink lots of water and eat carbo before diong baths!

Hubby with big mouth hollering at mommy lying down (by Abbie)
Hubby stood by the bedroom door and barked continuously at me "Drink more water! Eat pineapple cake! How are you doing? Get up, drink water!". In my confused state, I was conversing with myself about hubby's behavior...."I know I'm dizzy, but I'm NOT DEAF!".  Later he explained to me that this (barking) was the proper way to speak to victims of unknown state of consciousness, and he learned this in CPR class. So I suppose I should forgive him for breaking my eardrums because he was just following protocol. (Above) Abbie drew a picture of him screaming commands at me while I laid in bed, and her looking on nearby. What an adventure! Good thing the rest of the trip went relatively smooth (except for the kids fighting every 6-8 minutes)!

One of 3 pictures of me in the entire trip (^_^). And not sure why all pix are in panoramic view!!


~Happy Birthday Jesus~ Presentation by our Sweet Little ones!

Merry Christmas my sweeties! (^_^) It is so touching to see how innocent and earnest the little ones are as they sing beautiful praises to our Lord Jesus! Yes, His birth is the reason for the season!

In the first video, you can see the kids came into the chapel (after Uncle Time's introduction) 'while they sang the Chipmunk Christmas song....so cute!

What is even more heartwarming are the angelic smiles of love, anticipation, nervousness, and joy in their parents faces! As I beheld the parents surrounding me, I realized that God also smiles joyfully at us as we worship Him from deep within our hearts and souls!

Each little child you see in these videos.... is flourishing today not haphazardly, but because someone is pouring out days, months, and years of unconditional love, endless labor, unspoken sacrifices, sleepless nights, and daily pains, tears, fears and cares! The moment we became parents, we experienced for the first time what it feels like to wear our hearts....on the OUTside!

Only with God's love and strength are we able to persevere and train our kids up the way he should go, since we are so limited and weak ourselves! (^_^)

(^_^) God bless you, mommies and daddies, as you devote your time, energy, sleep and your ALL to your children! Happy Birthday Jesus, and Merry Christmas everyone!

Here is the photo Album of the singing presentation. (^_^) Enjoy the pictures!


Kids' Christmas Presentation (^_^)

This year, auntie Erinn led the kids (1st - 6th graders) in the Christmas program! Today they had an early Christmas presentation we had fun watching the short skits and also hearing the kids sing! Everyone sang super well!

The first song

Kids getting antsy...

Third song...

By the last song, Abbie apparently had enough of singing (she is 5 yrs old, so shouldn't be in this singing group...but auntie Erinn made a kind exception since she practiced w/big brother Caleb weekly at children's worship)....  ~(^_*)~

Abbie turns back at audience ~ apparently running out of batteries...

She started to do some hilarious things....like looking SUPER annoyed, crossing her arms, tucking her clothes in, and poking Rebecca during the super long presentation. We were there since 9:10am so she was pooped out. It was so fun to watch them!

Super funny last song...

Good job everyone! Merry early Christmas! Happy birthday Jesus!


Go Gladiators! Hubbies are in Pseudo-Wipe-Out!!! (^_^)

We're waiting for you, to join us ain Gladiator Run 2011!

Today is a super special day!Hubby and 8 friends (4 coworkers, 4 church buddies) have been training for this special "Wipe Out" event for several months! Even our dentist buddy Tommy had taken this day off, in order to slush around in the mud!

Uncle Edison is truly on "Survivor" mode!

It was super cold and overcast this morning, and even drizzled too! The "Incredible 9's" made their way through the 12 obstacle 5K course, in mud, waters, walls and fire, so that we can bring to you this daredevil adventure, LIVE, from Irvine, CA!  

Hubby's hiking (or wine-meat) friends ~ Coworkers at Alcon!

Edison, tommy, hubby Mark, James and Victor! Smiling proudly before race...haha....wait boys, you will suffer!

It was worth the long weeks of waiting, the waking up on a freezing cold morning, the paparrazi-like pursuit to capture our hubbies in action ~ and finally being able to witness our hubbies transform into mud monsters before our eyes!

Mud Men Crew 2010! Victor is still struggling 'while the boys take their celebratory picture.

Mr. Victor makes it to the finish line!

Below are the events in chronological order...so without further ado, I shall let you witness the exciting events for yourselves! (^_^)

We had lots of fun watching the videos of our men falling and sliding, flying through fire, and swimming across muddy trenches ! Thanks Victor and Carol for your hospitality! (^_^) What a memorable day!

Our life on this earth likens this obstacle course.... 
Sometimes it is smooth and easy, but many times it is filled with unexpected obstacles, muddy situations, and fiery trials. It is a blessing to have friends who love us at all times, and wonderful brothers (by birth or through Christ) who walk/run/stand with us during challenging times! Proverbs 17:17 ~ soph's paraphrase (^_^).

The Lord bless you richly, my fellow siblings and teammates, as we run this life's unpredictable & exciting course together! One day we will be arrive at the finish line, and even if we become muddy and slimy, Jesus will be there with outstreched hands, ready to hug us and bring us to the Heavenly home He custom made for us!


Recession Decorating at Christmas Time! (^_^)

Hubby won this Santa Bear for me when we were dating....18 years ago!

Today I woke up with major back pain. Why? Because yesterday we (Abbie and I) decorated the front yard with Christmas lights and decor! It took me (a very non-engineering-minded gal) more than 2 hours to wrap all the lights around the front porches, garage frame and tree.... 

Abbie proudly stands with Mr. Bear & Pals

Mr. Elephant from Big Lots

This year I decided to save $$ and not buy another head-rotating reindeer, after donating my 7 year old Rudolph the Rusty Reindeer.....We will just have Mr. Elephant from Big Lots out on the lawn.

It may seem like a small task to deck one's yard with lights, but for me, it's a hefty task because non-left-brained-me couldn't figure out which way to connect the bizillion light sources so that they will actually ALL light up! I almost gave up half way!
Santa Bear was with us ever since Caleb was born!

Half of this blanket-light is broken, but I hid it in the back of the fence!

First time I hung lights over our garage, and lazy me used Scotch tape!
I consider it a big accomplishment 'cuz we saved $$ on mechanical lifts!

Hubby said I should wrap the lights around the WHOLE tree! Isn't this
supposed to be the guys' job? I'm glad I survived wrapping lights on just the tree trunk!

I couldn't get the lights to work 'cuz I didn't have enough plugs (^_^)! Had to use my fish tank connector...sorry fishies!
 After an afternoon's hard work, we can sit back and enjoy the fruit of our labors....for 23 days....then we get the joy of taking them ALL down again!! It's tough work, but somehow the millions of it still do it faithfully year after year! All for the love of our little ones (and big ones too!), and spreading a little festive holiday ambience!
Happy Almost Christmas everyone!