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Friday, December 31, 2010

Birthday for a Big Girl

On December 29, 2010 our oldest daughter, Sariah, turned 10 years old! It's hard for us to believe that she's going from a little girl to a big girl and from single digits to double. It really does make for a semi-sad mommy and daddy but we know how happy she is turning the big 1-0! Ü For her birthday, she wanted to invite 3 or 4 of her friends & cousins over to celebrate with her-so we had a Movie Party! I whipped up some invitations on Photoshop which turned out really cute!
We started off with a "star" lunch for the girls and they filled up on piggies in a blanket, chicken katsu fingers, little sammies, homemade pizza and pasta.
And aren't these the cutest?! Little popcorn tub cupcakes in lieu of a birthday cake. They were a hit! Ü
The happy birthday girl opened her gifts and was grateful to receive clothes, a sketch pad, a cookie baking set, coloring tote, chocolates, a jewelry box and a lipstick piggy bank filled with stickers and doo-dads. Ü

We headed over to the movies and watched Narnia, which was awesome! Never as good as the first, but it was still a great movie. :) Funny how no matter how full you are, there's always room for popcorn! After the movie, the girls had grasshopper ice cream before heading back home to play a little Wii and get a second round of food. Sariah had such a fun time sharing her special day with her family and friends. We're so thankful for our little bookworm and for all the joy she brings into our lives. She's been such a great help to her little sister Mady and to her parents as well. Happy 10th Birthday Sariah!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas 2010

Even though this technically wasn't our first Christmas here in Utah...it definitely felt like it. We hadn't even been in Utah a whole month last year when Christmas rolled around and needless to say, we were still quite homesick and didn't have much of a Christmas spirit. After returning home from our last-minute trip to CA this month, we got right into the holiday spirit. Ü The girls were looking forward to Christmas for several weeks and even more so when Sariah finally went on Winter break from school. On Christmas Eve I baked up a slew of goodies to pass out to some of our families we would be visiting. I didn't make as many platters as I wanted to because I got a late start on baking, but they turned out great! Oreo Truffles, chocolate chip cookies, brownies and Christmas candies filled the plates. I planned on making chocolate-covered strawberries but apparently it's out of season. Oops. :)
Growing up, my mom always waited until Christmas morning for us to open presents and we've pretty much stuck to that tradition with our own girls as well. Ü We woke up Christmas morning and had a little devotional with our girls before opening their gifts. Since it was just us this year, we passed out a present to each of the girls and watched them open it one at a time (versus our usual-passing out all the gifts-and everyone opening it at the same time...when we were with our extended family, that is Ü). It was fun watching the girls' reactions as they opened each of their gifts...Sariah is definitely the queen of reactions. :0)
Fred's younger brother, Michael, was in town for the holidays so him and their other brother Cheeku came by for breakfast. After eating, we got ready to head over to the Sagato's home for Christmas lunch. The Sagato Family has been long time friends of ours and we were glad to spend the holidays with them. They are known for their delicious cuisine and baked goods and it was evident in all of the foods they prepared. We indulged in meatballs, egg foo yung, taro, chicken spinach croissants, palusami, sausage and more! I was able to take some great shots of the family before we headed out to visit more family. Before leaving we got a call from Mama (my mom) and chatted a bit over Christmas morning events. We sure do miss everyone at home! Ü We stopped by Grandma & Grandpa's house and delivered some goodies and a gift (mainly for Grandpa). He mentioned to my mom that he wanted the new book, the Biography of President Monson and we were so pleased that he loved his gift. :) We made another stop at our Laufou-Lautalo Families before heading home. The Laufou & Lautalo families surprised us with a knock at our door not 30 mins. later bearing even more gifts! Yay for Christmas love. :) We received a wonderful present from them...a personalized FHE Family Board. I love it! We spent the rest of the evening amongst family laughing over board games, homemade pizza, Wii competitions and more goodies. So thankful for all we have, for our families & friends, for the blessings we experience and especially above all...for our Savior. Merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Birthday for a Bestie

My best friend, Gloria Taala, turned 28 this week and thanks to the idea of our friend Julia...we had a birthday dinner for her! :0) I wanted to do something a little special for her so I got together with her sister Verona and made some extra goodies. We decided to make grown-up goody bags with Almond Roca, Ferrero Rocher, Hershey and Snickers candies. Can you tell I had my chocolate influence in there? hehe We also made cupcakes and I whipped up some zebra cupcake wrappers on Photoshop to match the zebra print monogram tags I created. They were super cute! Ü
We met at Olive Garden in Sandy and celebrated with our family & friends. We filled our tummies with yummy pasta, laughed out loud non-stop and reminisced on memories of when we were all (at one point or another) attending the Long Beach 7th Ward. Ü I always miss my sister's at times like these when their presence is definitely missed. :) We had a wonderful time celebrating a birthday for a bestie. We love you Glo! Ü