November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

We hosted a wonderful Thanksgiving celebration this year and were grateful to join with the Disbrows and many of the Hallidays. Yummy foods included our brined turkey stuffed with aromatics, Jeni's famous sweet potato casserole, Kaye's homemade rolls, Diana's veggie tray, Bob and Carin's layered Jello, Becky's cream cheese pumpkin roll, the Disbrows stuffed mushrooms and Steve's mashed potatoes. I also made a NY style cheesecake and a Chocolate Angel Pie. We were stumped trying to figure out how to seat 22 but then got the idea to use the island as an extension of the table and it worked well. Below are pictures from the day.

November 24, 2011

Fiddler on the Roof

Maddy just finished a successful four night run of Fiddler on the Roof at her high school, playing the middle daughter Hodel. The production was amazing and Maddy did a wonderful job. Jeni and I both continue to marvel at her stage presence and her beautiful voice. As just a sophomore, we're excited for Maddy's future performances too. Below are pictures from several of the scenes as well as pictures of Maddy with some of the cast members.

November 23, 2011

Hot Air Balloon

About a month ago I did the craziest thing I have ever done. I rode in a hot air balloon as part of a work-sponsored event in Phoenix. Looking back on it now, I probably should have been more nervous than I was given how high we went in the Arizona desert and how unprotected we were. I thought for sure they would have handed out parachutes for each of us as a safety precaution. No sir. Not even a seatbelt. Or a helmet! And there were about 12 of us in a very small bucket.

We started off like storm chasers as the pilots in our cars had to find just the right spot to set up based on what the wind was doing. From the time we got out of the car to the time we were in the air was only about 30 minutes and we were airborne for almost an hour. I learned that the way you steer is by altitude. The wind blows different directions depending on the altitude so we went up or down based on which way we wanted to go. It was really a surreal feeling as it felt very weightless. There was no jerking around at all and the ride was very smooth. After landing, they fed us a delicious breakfast and then we were done.

I don't think that is something I will ever do again. Click here to see my previous post about my issues with vertigo. Below are pictures from the day.