Saturday, January 03, 2009

Closing Out 2008 and Celebrating 100

This is my 100th post. My first post was on November 21, 2004, so it seems fitting that I would close out 2008 with a nice round number.

This has been a very busy month to close a very busy year. For those of you who wonder why I don't write, call, or blog... here's why. This is SOME of what I did in December...

I wrapped up a GREAT semester at LDS Business College where I teach a 4 credit Space Planning class (so much fun, but it's a beast of a class for the students... and me).

I had AWESOME students this semester and I am proud of each of them. Here are their final projects:




Aren't they talented? Those are models of "green" modular housing completely designed from ground up and built by the students.

Next, I helped plan and execute the ward party for over 300 people...


Then, I made Christmas presents for some nieces and nephews and sister-in-laws...

Calvin's sweatshirt.

Ethan's sweatshirt.

Jenni's scarf.

Bunnies for everyone.

Abby posted instructions on how to make the bunnies here.

Decorated the house for Christmas...

Todd's stocking...
My stocking... the Santa dolls are courtesy of Darcy who made them for us last year. We thought they were voodoo dolls, but she assured us they were not. Mine looks like a nun in a Santa suit.
The jewelry Christmas tree and the nativity...
Spices and orange peels simmering on the stove...
Our beautiful Christmas tree... the skinnier the better. You can never be too rich and your Christmas tree can never be too thin... Isn't that what they say?

Hosted a cousin Christmas party...
We invited all of the Oscarson and Carr kids over so their parents could do some shopping or just have a date.
The kids were so great. We made a gingerbread house all together...
And then they got to eat it right up. They were thrilled.
I had this whole idea of serving spinach for dinner (along with chicken nuggets and mashed potatoes) and having them watch the movie "Popeye". I loved that movie when I was a kid, and I was sure that none of them had seen it. So all during dinner we made them try and guess the movie, and it became apparent that NONE of them even knew who Popeye was! They had never even seen a cartoon! "Oh well," we thought, "we'll stick the movie in and have some fun." But after all that build up, and the forced feeding of canned spinach (just a bite!) the DVD was cracked and we couldn't watch it anyway! Thank goodness I was a prepared aunt and had Prince Caspian on hand!
We made the family room into a pillow and blanket covered cozy den and watched the movie in our PJ's with plenty of buttery popcorn.

Next, I organized a 39th anniversary dinner for Mo & Poppa. We are so grateful for them. They have been such great parents and have been such good examples to us. They are a team. It was fun to celebrate with dinner and a little program. Our friend, Stuart Truscott, from Massachusetts was in town and came by for dessert. It fun to see him and fun to get caught up.

Then came Christmas Eve at our house. We had Grandma & Grandpa Green, Mo & Poppa, the Carrs, and the Oscarsons, so people total. We had yummy food and good company, and thankfully, we all fit!
You can see the roaring fire playing on our TV...
Then we had a nice little pagent complete with vintage angel BLING while Grandpa Green read the story of the Nativity from Luke 2.
This was the portion of the evening when we all sang Silent Night until someone hit the "Dance Beat" button on my electric piano and the evening disintegrated into discoing angels and shepherds. Amy tried to keep her composure and we just kept singing. Why fight it? It was a wonderful night of family and fun.

We opened a few presents, and the family had a surprise for me and Todd. Together, they had decided that instead of giving gifts to each other this year, they would take that money and give it to the "Baby Rhodesbud" fund. Siblings had written letters and nieces and nephews had drawn pictures. Todd and I were so overwhelmed there was nothing to do but cry. I still want to weep thinking of their sacrifice, and of the kids being willing to give up getting presents in order to bless us. We love you all so much!

Pretty soon the kids became seriously concerned about not being home when Santa came. Just as everyone was leaving we spotted a strange sight... a multi-colored flashing lighted vehicle of some sorts was descending in the night sky (we DO live close to the Provo airport...). The kids went nuts and quickly got into the cars.

Todd and I had a nice and quiet Christmas morning complete with hot chocolate and sausage rolls. We are so blessed, Todd is thoughtful, and our family is loving and generous. We used some Christmas cash and bought "RockBand 2". I came home one night after Christmas and found Todd thus...
His explanation: "I got hot." (Don't worry, he has pants on...)

Todd had the whole next week off, so we decided to finally finish our wood floor that was purchased (and has been sitting in our garage) and started last spring!
Our house went from Christmas coziness to utter chaos...
Fiona has been seriously confused. She's been confined to the upstairs, and may remain there for the rest of her natural life. She has put some awesome scratches in the floor we already laid prompting me to make her some special grippy baby socks with elastics to hold them on.. which she hates.
But is has been well worth it!
The new floor has made all the difference in the world! We are still finishing the kitchen and the mud room and then it will be over... I mean done.

We enjoyed a FUN New Year's Eve celebrating Ethan's birthday at the Oscarson home. Chip and Marie- Laure know how to throw a PAR-TAY! We had hors d'oeuvres and desserts all night as well as present opening, birthday cakes, and RockBand until 1:30am. Everyone got into the act and we all took turns singing, playing the guitars, and wailing on the drums (adults only... the kids watched a movie... miraculously!) It was a great way to ring in the new year.

What else can I say? I've been busy... What will 2009 bring for the Rhodes? We are grateful for friends and family and we hope to spend some quality time with you soon. I would like to beat my 2005 record for 56 blogs and become a regular once more, but if this year was anything like last year... we'll see.


katyvee said...

Is THAT why you didn't send a card??? My goodness girl.. you do GO don't ya? It all looked wonderfully fantastic. Can I have you as my aunt??y

Heidi said...

Please be related to me! :) I will call you a long lost cousin or something!

Kacy said...

I hope to join you soon for some topless Rock Band. I've got a lot less going on then you (obviously) so I can fit it in whenever. I'm so tired from reading this post. I must rest now.

Wendy said...

WOW, you're the busiest, most generous, creative, smart, beautiful, best aunt, daughter, wife, sister EVER!!! I love you friend!

mo said...

I've been feeling sad that you post blogs so seldom but you have managed to make up for it in one single post AND make it perfectly clear why you never have time to blog! Good post! Thanks again for all the happy memories in 2008! I can't wait to see what 2009 brings!

Abby said...

You could have just said you're a Relief Society President and people would have understood...but that part wasn't even mentioned! You are supremely busy. I am lucky you are mysis--you are fun and generous and all the other things Wendy said. I can't believe all those adorable sweatshirts and bunnies, by the way. ADORABLE! And LOVE the floor.

Suzie Petunia said...

Right now I am so sad that my kids weren't there for the cousin's party with FUN Aunt Carrie and Uncle Todd. (They DO know who Popeye is! They watch the old cartoons and sing the song.) And that we missed an Anniversary dinner and an amazing Christmas Eve. And what a fun New Years party! It all looked amazing. So beautiful it makes me want to cry. We spent New Years moving and everyone fell into bed at 9:30. I was exhausted but couldn't sleep. I layed awake until midnight when our new neighbors started shooting off seriously illegal fireworks. It was a lonely was to ring in the New Year. I miss my family! You guys know how to have a good time.

Amy Lynn said...

Oh, what a lovely month. I know it had very stressful moments but you do make everything you touch beautiful and graceful and effortless looking. Thank you for hosting so many wonderful events where we all got to be together...and for the meatballs on Christmas Eve...and the fuzzy stuffed bunny Hannah loves...and the bling jewelery that made the nativity stunning...and for being so wonderful. I love you!

andrea said...

i have about 500 comments i'd like to make, but i'll stick with two:

1. my kids watch old VHS popeye movies all the time. they love it. and they will eat raw spinach, but not cooked.

2.i read this post this morning, but had to come back to comment bc i was running late. but all day long i have thought about the generosity and love of your family, and have spontaneously burst into tears several times. you really do have an amazing family.

emma jo said...

How come everything you do is sooo fabulous?! I even want to take your hard designing class...can I use Crayolas? I don't even know where to begin with commenting on it all...the only thing I can think of to say is "tee hee hee" at Todd playing in the buff...come on, you think he wasn't really just jamming shirtless like a rockstar?

Lea said...

Oh my gosh, could the Oscarson woman be more talented, after seeing your post and Abby's, you gals are so talented and domestic. Love it all.


Lucky Mommy said...

That looks like the most beautiful Christmas dinner I've ever seen! Where did you get the fabric for your kitchen curtains? Seriously, they are gorgeous and I am in the market. I so need your help decorating our new house. I am hopeless and it still looks like my college apartment. I am very impressed!

Julienne said...

Wow, 100 posts. All of you that got into blogging forever ago have left me in the dust. I am glad that you are still overachieving and making everyone happy in the process. I hope you are enjoying it as much as ever. You are such a fun lady. I miss you.