Monday, January 16, 2012

I think there's definitely some truth in this. But also think you have to put in the effort until you realize it's not being returned. That moment can be a hard realization but letting go can also be very freeing.

Thank you to my friends who, even though they are tens of miles or thousands of miles away, still make the effort to connect with me.

I love you!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Christmas Holidays 2011

We had a really fun and busy holiday season this year! We decided to stay local and not hit the Mexican beaches, which I missed a lot. But we enjoyed a traditional Christmas and I cooked all day long. It was really nice and great food! We kept busy over the holidays with lots of fun stuff.

Probably our most exciting day was when we went to Mt Baker National Forest and went for a hike. We had some info that there is a natural hot spring in the forest so we decided to go for it. With "kind of" directions in hand, we set off and found a "parking area" off the road. This road is not your typical road, it was fairly deep in the forest, gravel, full of potholes. Once we parked, the directions said to take the obvious trailhead. Well, there are no signs so we found one entry to the forest that followed along an abandoned road. We figured this was it. 45 minutes down the road, we figured we had taken the wrong way. So we set back and investigated a little closer back by the car.

We found a small entry to the forest that we had to kind of duck into and saw a small trail. Followed that for a little while and finally came upon the springs. It was one of the neatest things I have seen! I had no idea such a place existed so closeby. There was snow around but the springs were hot. I made it up to my ankles but Dama and the kids went all the way in. We were the only ones in the springs, pretty spoiled!

Even Baxter took a little dip! It was so fun to have him on this adventure. He loved hiking along with us and he was rolling around in the snow.

December 28th brought Maile's 12th birthday! We celebrated as usual with a cake. She was suitably un-impressed as always. But deep down inside, I am sure she can see how loved she is with such a fuss made over her :)

January 1st brought the Polar Bear Plunge at Matthews Beach Park in Seattle. This was a really fun event (probably because I didn't have to go in!!). Dama and Lucas went in, the brave souls that they are. Hardy people!! Lucas loved it and declared it an annual event.

With their "Courage Patches":

The whole family spent a lot of time playing hockey this holiday too. If you know Lucas, he is really good at recruiting folks to play sports with him. He got a bunch of street hockey gear for Christmas so he was using it up!

January 2nd we went to the Tsubaki Shrine in Granite Falls for our annual New Years rituals. We pray for good health and good fortune, walk the beautiful grounds by the Stillaguamish River, and pick an Omikuji (yearly fortune). We came up with "Good Fortune" so hopefully this year will be a great one for us.

Beautiful Ellie preparing to enter the shrine grounds. You wash your hands in this water using the scoops.

Happy New Years to all of you!

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