Friday, December 19, 2008

Only six days 'til Christmas!!

So I hope you have all your shopping done! We certainly don't...

I love Christmas time. I love the decorated trees and houses, the lights, the endless yummy food, the sweaters and scarves, the celebrations, the music, and especially the spirit. I love the feeling of charity that seems to blossom in everyone around this time of year.

Although our Christmas decorations are sparse, the few we do have I absolutely love. Most of them are new to us this year.

This nativity is hand-carved and from Egypt! This thoughtful gift was given to us by Brad's cousin and his wife (Jake and Brook). It is beautiful and the real wood smells wonderful. It is our first nativity and we adore it! Thanks Jake and Brook!

This one is my favorite. It is also hand made - by my dad! His new hobby is wood working and he made me this Christmas advent calendar for this year from wood 2x4's. With every day in December that passes, you pull out a brick and Santa falls a little farther down the chimney. On Christmas Eve you pull out brick #24 and he falls into the chimney! Isn't that adorable?! I just love it! Thanks Daddy!

This is our starless little Christmas tree. Yes, it's real! We got it for $25 dollars at a Christmas Tree lot where we got my parents' big tree. It only stands about 3 feet tall so we put it on the end table in our front room. It's so cute and perfect for our small apartment. I can't wait to open all the presents!

A yummy Christmas tradition in the Carver household is making Christmas cookies for our friends and neighbors!

Sammy was "helping"... the flour shows up really well on black fur!

I also had my work holiday party earlier this month at the Embassy Suites Hotel in El Segundo.

This is all the upper management in my department at Hyperion. From left to right: Eddie Ohanian - the Assistant Division Engineer over the Design Group; Ken Redd - The Environmental Engineering Division Head (he's LDS and the one who recruited me at BYU. I actually worked with his daughter Stephanie (who's now on a mission in Chicago) in the MathLab at BYU); me :); Mike Sarullo - the Assistant Division Engineer over the Project Mangagment Group (my group); Rick Mayer - my boss and Project Manager in the Project Management Group; and Tim Haug - Deputy City Engineer (#2 guy in the whole city Bureau of Engineering).

These are most of the people I work with (minus a couple and plus the white guy with the beard - where did he come from?).

Christmas time is so fun, I almost don't want Christmas Day to come! Cuz then it's over, time to pack everything up and wait a long year until Christmas next year. Why can't it just be Chrismas time all year 'round - like in Whoville?!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Catch up...

So since it's almost Christmas, I figure I'd better get caught up with the last couple holidays we've had (better late than never?).

Halloween this year was fun. Brad and I don't get trick-or-treaters at our apartment so we decided to dress up and go to our ward Halloween/Trunk-or-Treat Party (we weren't the only young couple there with no kids :). We went as a 50's couple and I made my poodle skirt on my new sewing machine! It was fun decorating our trunk and passing out candy to all the kids. Some of our favorite costumes were a skateboarding sumo wrestler, and a family that dressed up as Peter Pan characters (the Korths!). The 3 year old son was Peter Pan, the 10 month old daughter was Tinker Bell, the mom was Wendy, and the dad was Captain Hook. So cute!

Thanksgiving was a blast. I have the funnest (yes, funnest) in-laws! Brad and I went to Utah for 9 days - a nice, long break from work. We flew to Utah Friday night before Thanksgiving and didn't leave to come home until the Sunday after Thanksgiving. It was a lot of fun visiting the Jeppsons. While we were there, we visited one of my roommates from BYU (Callie, her husband Steve and son Austin),and watched the long-awaited BYU vs. U of U football game with Brad's cousin Jeff and Grandpa Gotberg... that ended in grave disappointment.

You gotta be able to laugh it off... In case you don't know, Max Hall is the BYU quarterback who threw 6 Utah turnovers. Ouch.

We went to church, visited Grandma and Grandpa Jeppson, saw Brad's little sister's (Cami's) high school play - Hello Dolly, ate lunch at the greatly missed Cafe Rio - twice, watched a movie with Brad's family (The Man Who Knew Too Little with Bill Murray - it's one of our favorites, so funny!), hung out with Brad's brother Brandon (we call him Bird) and sister-in-law Jenn (the same one I'm in business with!), and Wednesday night was the Gotberg (Brad's mom's side) family Thanksgiving party. We did a big Thanksgiving dinner and played basketball at the rec. center after.

The boys had fun getting the balls stuck in the bars behind he basketball hoop. From left to right: little cousin Quin, cousin Jeff, brother Brandon, Brad, and cousin Trevor. This activity is was spurred the now infamous line from Aunt Krista, "If they're that stupid, they deserve to lose their balls."

Left to right: cousin Nicole, cousin Megain, Cousin Jeff, sister Cami.


Then they had to get them down. Jeff and Brad hoisted Trevor.

Thursday was Thanksgiving with the Jeppsons (Brad's Dad's side of the family) and we stopped by my Aunt Chris's house after to visit with my aunt, uncle, and cousins who live in American Fork, and my grandparents who were down visiting from Idaho. Friday, Brenda (Brad's mom) and I went shopping, then for the rest of the day Cami, Jenn, Brenda, and I made gingerbread houses! Well, gingerbread churches, actually. It's one of the Jeppson family Thanksgiving traditions to kick-off the Christmas season. It was really fun! I gave mine to Brad's grandpa the next night since I couldn't take mine home. This is what it looked like:




Notice the angel I put on top of my church! :)

Saturday Brad and I visited our old BYU stomping grounds. It was fun reminiscing until we walked by one of the on-campus computer labs where I had spent so many late nights... and all of a sudden I felt a little sick. After lunch with Bird and Jenn at Red Robin in Provo Towne Centre Mall, we visited the apartments we lived in when we were first married and the duck pond near our last apartment in Provo where we loved feeding the duckies! Saturday night we went to Temple Square to see the lights with Brian, Brenda, Bird and Jenn. Cami had to work. Jenn took some awesome pictures of the lights and the temple with her new camera!

The big brown building up on the mountain underneath and to the left of the Y is the first apartment (Lookout Pointe #318) we lived in when we were first married! Aw, memories...

This is a picture of the Clyde Building (engineering building on campus) where we spent countless late nights. That side walk you see through the field area - Brad actually drove down that in his parents' little Nissan in a moment of insanity... almost scared a pedestrian to death.

This is the second (and last) Provo apartment (Harmony Square #206). We could walk to campus and the duck pond was right around the corner.

Where we were married August 5, 2005.

Sunday we went to church, ate leftovers, and flew home later that night.

If ever there was a spare minute from the big activities, we were eating left-overs, crocheting, and mostly PLAYING LOTS OF ROOK! (It's only the best card game ever!) We probably played about 12-15 games of Rook, but that is only enough to carry us through the end of January before the withdrawls start again. We won't see them again until the beginning of April when Brad's youngest brother comes home from his mission in Lima, Peru. It is April yet?? We miss them already! It was a great trip that made us wish we could be on vacation everyday.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Open for Business!!

My sister-in-law, Jenn, and I are open for business! We both love crocheting and have started making baby headbands, and beanies for boys, girls, and adults. The "brand name" we came up with is Pinkie Blondie Blue. That's what my parents used to call me when I was little, and my grandpa used to call my mom that when she was little. To see our cute creations, visit If you like what you see, please tell your friends!

Here is a quick preview.

These are single crochet stitch beanies:

These are double crochet stitch beanies and headbands:

Sorry, these pictures aren't the best. The beanies are $10 each, headbands are $5 each, if you want a decoration (flower, bow/button, etc.) it's an extra $2. They can be shipped for just a couple dollars each or hand-delivered if you live close to Jenn or me (Provo or LA). I can make beanies and headbands, and Jenn can make headbands. Please let me know what you think of the beanies and headbands and if you have any suggestions on how we could make them better!

And remember, please tell your friends! :)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

My new hobby...

I have a new hobby - crocheting. Since February of this year I have been crocheting non-stop. I just love it! Brenda, my mother-in-law, is the person who started my obsession. Brenda started me crocheting baby blankets for a foundation called Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep, a group that helps comfort families with still-borns. Brenda's friend Tara, who is in her ward in South Jordan, UT had a still-born baby in May 2007. Her little girl was 8 months along when she died of too much iron received from her mother's body. When Tara delivered her baby, a lady came into her hospital room and offered her (as a free service) a hand-crocheted baby blanket to wrap her little girl in and to keep as a memento of her. She then offered to take pictures of her little girl with Tara and her husband, also did plaster castings of her cute little hands and feet. Tara was so touched she wanted to get involved to help other families going through this trial. She is now the regional representative of the group in Utah (they are a nation-wide organization). As a memorial to her still-born daughter, she and about 15 others she enlisted set out to crochet 100 baby blankets by her daughter's one-year birthday. I was brought on in February to help in the last few months, as was my entire family (Mom, Claire, Adrienne) and several others. When May came, we had over 300! That is where my obsession started. I crocheted over 20 blankets before May (4 months) and I have been crocheting ever since.

My newest thing (as of about 2 months ago) that I taught myself how to do is crochet baby beanies (hats). My sister-in-law, Jenn, taught me how crochet cute little headbands and make flowers to attach to the headbands and beanies. I really wanted to try to sell them and about 1 week before Thanksgiving I found out a girl in my ward in El Segundo was participating in a craft fair on Main Street in El Segundo 1 week after Thanksgiving. I was crocheting like mad all during Thanksgiving break to try to build up my inventory for the fair. I made 20 beanies and 12 headbands in 2 weeks! And I was fairly successful - I sold 2 beanies for $10 each and 4 headbands for $6 each at the fair and had 2 orders for adult beanies after the fair (and because of the fair). Here are a couple of pictures!

Crocheting during Thanksgiving in Utah. The next picture is the beanie created as a result:

Here are a couple pictures from the craft fair:

I will have more pictures of my creations in my next post.