Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Catch up Begininning with December... Finally

Alright, so the beginning of December marked the end of an unforgettable chapter in my life- the end of being a full time student enrolled in full time classes...
These are some of my favorite girls. We have been in the education program together for the past two years and have spent A LOT of time together. To commemorate our last class ever, we decided to have a little photo-shoot outside the classroom, thanks Rosario for the suggestion to pose pyramid style. I've had so much fun with these girls and come graduation I will be posting more on them and our adventures together.

And here comes Christmas.
Christmas in the Tuft family begins on Christmas eve at Sistah Sara's house where we enjoy the annual array of Asian food. My dad and two of the three brother in laws served their missions in Asia... hence the origins of this tradition. Here I am with Mariah just prior to the fine dining.
We were thankful this year to share Christmas Eve with the Abels, they were a delightful addition to our joyous celebrating!

...following the fine dining, a live nativity beginning with the prophesies of Samuel the Lamanite.

...the Star of Bethlehem.
...the Wisemen.
...the Sheep.
...Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus ...the sheep is a little restless.

...the angel (and yes THAT IS the flower girl dress I wore to my sister's wedding in '93).

...the big picture... narrated by none other than the stud himself, Nathaniel Allen.

...some mingling.
...Christmas Eve ended at our sadly undecorated home. We meant to watch a movie but forgot that our DVD player broke so we stayed up watching Man vs. Wild!

Christmas morning began with breakfast cooked by Nathaniel's Grandpa, Conrad. There- we enjoyed the company of the Allen family in it's entirety, homemade bread, fresh squeezed orange juice, and deep fired pastries. Following breakfast, we met up with my family at my parents house...

...This little guy was Christmas present enough for me. His name is Cutler, you might recognize him as baby Jesus featured in the above pictures. With all of the Christmas morning commotion, I was able to sneak away to a spot where no one made attempts to take him away from me. I laid in front of the piano and cuddled with him until Mariah found me and snapped a picture :)

...Some Christmas morning togetherness.

...Brigham is always so good to little cousins.

Post Christmas togtherness...

...Fun at the track.
...Nathaniel taught Cutler how to break dance.

...Zoolights!!!! A favorite tradition complete with homemade bread, hot chocolate, and doughnuts.

On to January...

Beginning with New Years Eve...
We hung out with the Taylor girls, had appetizers at the Allens, and then played Rockband with the fam at Sara's til morn.
...You might think Christmas is over come January, but we definitely experienced the Polar Express within the first week of the month!!! Thanks mom and dad, we will never forget it :)

...It was so cold waiting to board the train I could hardly bear it. I was shivering, pressed as tightly as i could to Nathaniel when I felt Hyrum put his arms around the both of us! The next thing I knew, all of my nieces and nephews were huddled around me trying to keep me warm. I love them.
...Just us girls.
...Boarding the train.

...On the train.

...Oh Nathaniel. He just had to entertain the entire train with his singing.

...We decided to enjoy the snow while we were up there.

I STARTED Student teaching...

...This is my desk, it says "Mrs. Allen". Can't even describe the joy I feel about this little desk, it's like a physical manifestation of all my hard work!

...This is the beautiful little classroom where I spend my days. The little ones had just packed up and left for home.

New York, New York...
A company that Nathaniel works for, out of New York, invited us to their Holiday party in New York! What an opportunity, of course we jumped on it. It was a first for both of us...

...This is Nathaniel's scared face on our first Taxi ride ever. I'm being completely honest: I thought I was going to die on this Taxi ride. New York Taxis are a dangerous thing.

...First of all, finding a modest cocktail-attire dress for the party was one of the hardest things I have ever done.

...A brief showcase my efforts.

...This belt is probably my most favorite accessory now.

...New York city is the coldest place I have ever been, it hurt to smile! Danica and I discovered that if you zoom in on my face, I look like a demon. Um it's hysterical.
...On our way to see the show, Chicago on Broadway.

...We decided to take our "We're so excited to see Chicago on Broadway, here are our tickets and the play bill" pictures once inside our warm hotel because it was way to stinkin' cold to take any kind of picture outside. I think these pictures are funny because I'm trying really hard not to have a double chin and Nathaniel is way over taking pictures.

...Another big city pic.
...A Sunday morning stroll in Central Park.

...Some lovin' in Central Park.
...Some friends in Central Park.
...Some hot chocolate in Central Park.
...Out and about in The Big Apple.

...Statue of Liberty.
...Ellis Island.

...Ice Skating at Rockefeller Plaza. Ice skating in the midst of sky scrapers was a completely surreal experience, I was staring upwards most of the time!

Nathaniel is a very cautious ice skater...

...Carriage ride around Times Square, ideal for people watching, taking in the sights, and a little bit of romance.
...Top of the Empire State Building at night. This was magical.

...Late at night we found this little Lady in the Tramp style Bistro. We were seated in the back corner of the restaurant and pretty much had the place to ourselves. I don't ever want to forget this little restaurant! It was a perfect ending to our Big Apple adventure.
And that, in a nut shell, was December and January.