Friday, December 26, 2008

Nothing says Christmas like... machine guns

Status: Practically snowed in. Will it ever stop?!
Song: "Rock the Casbah" by The Clash

Merry Christmas to all you lovely people! I just thought I'd briefly check in before heading off tomorrow, braving the building snow drifts, and flying on a plane to...

HAWAII

Oh, yeah. You read it right. I'll blog all about it too...

But back to Christmas. I know we rank pretty high on the mean parent scale, which my kids were quick to point out when we wouldn't let them open any presents until after we ate a good breakfast (with the tree taunting in the other room)... and did the dishes.

When we finally released the young 'uns to open the gifts - in an orderly youngest to oldest manner (hey, at least we don't make them save the wrapping paper--anymore)- the modest Christmas we decided to have was a hit. We enjoyed the family surrounding us, the giving spirit, the reminders of our Savior, but most especially the NERF MACHINE GUN. *The official name is the Nerf Vulcan.

It was the envy of every male in the house, and a few females too. Check it out.



My first Youtube upload. *sniff*

Really, we had a great Christmas. We actually gave the boys an X-Box (used from a brother-in-law) but they never saw it coming and almost cried. Seriously. Oh, the leverage...

Enjoy the snow everyone!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Cards - New Age Style

I know I'm a Christmas slacker this year (for more evidence, see older post here), but I really think this is the way to go for Christmas cards. I could say that we're trying to do our best to help the environment, or that we just got our family pictures back a few days ago, or lots of things. I could also say that I just didn't quite get to it, and frankly didn't remember until all the over-achievers sent theirs to me in the mail. I'll let you pick whichever excuse sounds good to you, but for whatever reason, we're doing e-Christmas cards (blog and email style). I think it's the wave of the future - I really do. We'll probably reach more people this way, anyway.

The Theler Christmas Letter
(see picture at top of blog)

2008 has been a busy, but fulfilling, year in the Theler household. We are incredibly grateful for Jason’s job and the security it gives us. We took a Stay-cation this year and hung around home. It was a lot of fun and just goes to prove you don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a good time.

Jason is enjoying his fourth year as an Elementary School Principal, and the students and faculty love him. He feels like he has a pretty good grip on things now. This year Jason succumbed to spouse pressure and has taken up running. He impressed his coworkers on the School District 5K run so much that he has been invited to join a district team that will run a 170-mile relay race this June. It probably won’t be long before he can out-run Jaime. (Darn it!)

Jaime participated in many races this last year, including her first Sprint Triathlon (where she placed third in her division – much to her surprise). She works out regularly, and keeps extremely busy as a full-time mom/household manager (the official-sounding title is nice) and part-time author. In March, Jaime’s second book, Enjoying the Journey, was released and just last week she finished her current manuscript, a children’s fantasy which we hope you’ll see on shelves soon.

Brennan is now 10 and the most voracious reader we know. The library has a hard time keeping up with him. Brennan is in the A.L.L. program (an advanced class) again this year and enjoys the challenge it offers. He is also still doing karate, and is now a blue belt—well on his way to a black belt. Brennan is our most tech-savvy child and loves all things computer, video game, and military. He also participated in soccer and flag football this year.

Ian is 8 and very outgoing and athletic. Ian wants a Ripstick or a trampoline more than anything, but he’ll take soccer, basketball, skateboarding, football, wallball, or baseball, too. Ian is in karate too and is a green belt; his instructors are amazed by his power. This year Ian tested into the A.L.L. program and is enjoying making new friends and being challenged academically. He has discovered some really fun books, and now has joined the ranks of the book-lovers. (Jaime’s hard work has paid off.)

Senea is 5 and started Kindergarten this year. She loves it. She’s a blossoming little reader and loves to write notes to anyone—her friends, parents, siblings, grandparents, Santa, Jesus, etc. She adores all things girlie and “cute” but this year has seen a switch from dress-ups to artistic creativity. Every day Senea makes new works of art—so many that we can’t store them all. She loves to draw, color, cut, paste, paint, and make her own paper books (she is the author and illustrator – we wonder where she got that idea?). We have an entire wall dedicated to her “art gallery.”

We are so grateful for all our many blessings, including dear family and friends, and for the hope and happiness our knowledge of Jesus Christ brings us. May His peace rest upon your family and we wish you all the best for 2009. Feel free to stop by our family blog at thelerfive.blogspot.com to catch up on what’s going on with us (we update it regularly).

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Polar Express and no hot water (again)

Status: Waiting for the plumber to navigate the snowy roads to COME BACK and fix my hot water heater -- again. Grrrrr
Song: "O Holy Night" by almost anyone

No hot water again. I don't know about you, but for $200 that I paid a week ago. I *should* expect hot water. Needless to say, I did not go run my 5 miles today like I planned (inside, since it's snowing like a giant with a bad case of dandruff) and instead I'm hanging out at home crossing my fingers the plumber doesn't get in a car accident on his way over, cause I really want a hot shower!


***The Real Reason for this Post***

THE POLAR EXPRESS

Last Saturday we went with Jason's family to the Stringtown Polar Express in Lindon. If you've never heard of it, then get onboard! (Ha ha, a little train humor.) A group of six homes in a family in Lindon have dedicated their large yards, love of trains (a real one you can actually ride), and the Christmas Spirit for years now to run a Polar Express experience. We've been the last 3 years and I have to say this year they outdid themselves. *Good job, Cheri!!! I know she pops by my blog every so often :)

The train fits 14 people at a time and they have it down to a system, where they take reservations and move people on and off seamlessly. The first half of the ride showcases about a billion Christmas lights as you ride to the North Pole where you get to see Santa Claus (and boy does it beat waiting in line somewhere, let me tell you!). The ride back to the station is my favorite part, with beautiful music playing and you ride past a nativity scene, then beautiful pictures of Jesus Christ's life by artist Simon Dewey. (And Cheri, if you're reading, who sings the Mary Did You Know song? I want it!) We love this Christmas tradition.

I'll post some pics, then give you all the contact information so you can go experience it yourself (if there are any spots left).

Waiting in the heated barn watching the movie The Polar Express on a big screen.





All Aboard!




Some of the great lights. I know they're fuzzy,
but I was on a moving train in the dark, after all. :-)

Santa's receiving room.


All the kids with Santa.



You can visit their website, Stringtown USA for more information, to place reservations, and to view a beautiful slideshow of some of the art displayed on the train ride.

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Twilight Before Christmas

Status: Cold (a high of 30 degrees. Yuck)
Song: "Little Drummer Boy" by Josh Groban

We might as well start the week off with some fun. So here you go!

Take180.comview

Saturday, December 13, 2008

FINISHED!!!!!!

Status: WAHOOOOOO!!!!
Song: "Celebration" by Kool & The Gang

I finished my book!!!!
Hip Hip Hooray!!!!

That's right! We're talking 300 pages, 75,000 words of pure, finished awesomeness!

I actually have a few things to go back and fix, but they're so teeny tiny minor that they really don't count. Now begins the hunt for an agent, since I plan on going national with this one. I've got about 40 to try.

I'll be back in the blogging groove now. Yippeeeeee!!!!

*There are 17 exclamation marks in this post, but I really think this big of an accomplishment deserves 20. So... !!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The hot water saga continues

Status: Paying someone to come fix the hot water heater.
Song: "Superfreak" by Rick James (I need a happy, kooky song right now)

Grrrrrr.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Hot water - better than chocolate

Status: Soooo thankful for hot water
Song: "Clean" by Depeche Mode (apropos, I think)

For those just joining this blog, I think I should clarify. In reading my last post, you may assume that I did not shower in 4 days, which is so not the case. I do, in fact, pay attention to personal cleanliness. Which is why I am so delighted by my piping hot shower this morning that I am writing a blog to share with everyone!

I guess the "Yell at the appliance" repair method really does work. The hot water heater knew I meant business. :)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Coming up for air and unfortunately, NOT a hot shower

Status: On the last chapter. Yes, really!!!!!!!!!
Song: "Run the Show" by Kat DeLuna

Hey, all. I'm alive. Really I am.

Unfortunately I am in a state of non-shower because our stupid hot water heater decided it was entitled to shorter working hours. Obviously it's just exploitative to expect the pilot light to stay lit and actually heat up the water--all the time! So three times in the last 4 days I've done the winter, oh my word it's freezing, quick take off the clothes and leap into the shower, only to leap back out with a SCREAM. No hot water. Nada. We're talking snow run-off not hot.

Apparently the hot water heater has a 5 year warranty, which just expired 15 freaking days ago!!

I wish I were kidding.

The hot water pilot light and I are getting really closely acquainted. Mr. Pilot Light, meet Tyrant Coldilocks, who thinks a hot tub at 104 degrees is tepid. Be afraid, be very afraid...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Christmas decoration slacker that I am

Status: Soooo close to finishing my book. We're talking days (but don't look at the state of my house)
Song: "Terra Firma" by Delerium

Okay, so I don't have my Christmas tree up. In fact, the Christmas decorations are still boxed and crammed in the shelves hanging from my garage ceiling above where we park our van. I know that I'm trailing behind the neighborhood. But have you ever tried to wrestle a 50 pound Christmas tree from above your head while balancing on a ladder in the semi-darkness because the garage door has to be closed and we all know how not-bright those garage door opener lights are? Yeah, now maybe y'all have some more sympathy for me, huh? You know some obscenely high statistical number of domestic accidents happen while precariously balancing on something at home while wrestling with something high up (the exact statistic I don't know, but you'll have to trust me on this one). And I don't want to be another statistic. I'm more than a number!!

Sorry, I've been reading YA books so I had to throw in a little teen angst. So over it now...

So I'm a Christmas decoration slacker. But at least I have my blog all decorated prettily!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Terminator on the brain

Status: Still MIA, but the book's almost finished. Yea!
Song: "You Could Be Mine" by Guns N Roses (just cause we cycled to it in class this morning and I love the Terminator movies.)

I wrote a post on my other blog and since I have that GNR song going through my head, I've got Terminator on the brain. Did you know there's a new one coming out? It's called Terminator Salvation and Christian Bale - love him - is John Connor. Oooooh, I can't wait! (And now the secret's out--I'm an action movie lover.)

Here's the teaser.



**It was just brought to my attention that the Terminator movies were, in fact, rated R. *Gasp* I've actually only seen the first two, and that was back when I didn't watch ratings like I do now. *cringe* Good news! Terminator 4 will be PG-13. So now I don't have to censor myself :)