Tuesday, December 28, 2010


Old Christmas lists fulfilled...
Christmas dinner, complete with Christmas Crackers....
Crowns from our Crackers.....
The Heelys that almost did not arrive in time for the big day.....
Opening stockings....
Four happy kids. It was a good year.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Family Party 2010

My mom began having us out for Christmas Eve...years ago. I can't remember exactly the year? Jill was a baby. Anyway. All 5 of us siblings and our kids would go to the parents house, eat dinner, my dad would dress up in a Santa suit that my mom made, and give out the presents from them. We usually got Grandma Tussey for Christmas too, so she would be there. The year mom died, determined in our paralyzing grief to carry on the tradition, my oldest brother had us all out to his house for the party. We brought our own Santa gift for our kids, and so began a new era of the Christmas Eve Party. He and his fabulous wife have hosted us for 12 years in a row now.
Somewhere along the line, it became a tradition for the last Santa Sitting to occur the year you graduate high school. If you're over 18, you won't be sitting on the big guys lap. So we only had 2 kids to gift this year. Ryan's Santa gift: a cookbook.
Grace's Santa gift: Club Penguin swag.
Tyler singing his annual rendition of a song that he makes up...he changes lyrics to reflect what is going on in each family's life that year...this year's version was fabulous.
Our annual game of air hockey. I lose EVERY year. I did give him a run for his money for the first 10 minutes or so.....then crashed and burned. Good times!
I love my family. As we get older, and the kids get older, and some us have moved out of Utah, or may be moving out of Utah, it's possible that this tradition may morph again. Maybe to a different day, or a different place. But I think we'll always get together, visit, and honor our parents by continuing to weave the fabric of our family.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


I am in the annual throes of "Oh-my-heck-I'm-never-going-to-get-everything-done-before-Christmas-and-it-has-to-be-PERFECT for each child-I'm-freaking out and exhausted!"
Good times. I had to go and have not one, but TWO December children. Add strep x 3 of us so far, and it's been a super-special week.
Then I read this today. Read, and carry on, with hope :)

"Our responsibility is to rise from mediocrity to competence, from failure to achievement. Our task is to become our best selves. One of God’s greatest gifts to us is the joy of trying again, for no failure ever need be final." (Thomas S. Monson, "Never Give Up", New Era, Sept. 1994)

Sunday, December 19, 2010

11:58 AM

TWENTY-ONE years ago today, at 11:58 AM, we welcomed our firstborn into the world. Beautiful Jillian Shae Ditty...did you know that her name means "downy-haired child from the faerie fort"? Yep.

I don't have many pictures of her early life scanned. So this is what you get today.
Beautiful Jillian. She has been a delight from minute one...except for the emergency c-section. But after that, she has brought joy into our lives daily. She is kind, caring, nurturing, hard-working, musically talented, and funny. She is my firstborn, my much longed for daughter, my confidant, my partner-in-crime, my best friend. I love her more every day.
She got clothes, a pair of much-needed shoes, and a copy of Beauty and the Beast for her birthday. We have spent the day at church, playing duets on the piano, watching the above mentioned DVD, and playing Skip-Bo. It was a good day.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Grace turns 9

Grace's birthday celebrations began on Saturday at Incredible Pizza with family, and best friend Brynlie. We bowled...
Played Dance Revolution, skee-ball, and other games....
Ate, and got prizes! Super fun place to party.
Her actual birthday was on a Sunday. We had to wake her up exactly at 9:00 AM...on her 9th birthday....(don't judge...it's Sunday and she stayed up really late last night!)
She didn't want cake. She wanted (and got) a cream cheese brownie from Kneaders.
Making a wish...
Hugs from the person who made her.
I scrolled back and tried to see if I've blogged about her birth. I sort of did on her 7th birthday. So I won't bore you again with the "miracle of joy" story. But here are 9 things I love about our Grace:
1. She never leaves a room without saying "I love you."
2. She has a kind heart.
3. She's great fun to see movies with.
4. She has a fabulous sense of humor...she keeps us laughing.
5. She is a good, true, and loyal friend.
6. She is always quick to say "I'm sorry."
7. She reminds us of the simple joys in life.
8. She loves to make cards and letters for everyone.
9. She LOVES shoes!!!

It's hard sometimes being the youngest in a house full of adults. Our Grace keeps us all young-at-heart, and is so patient with us. Thank you, baby, for being one of my best friends. I love you more and more every day. Happy 9th Birthday!