Christmas 2011


Christmas Eve was spent first at Grandma Nora's house. Tradition has it that we eat a nice dinner together (ham, Broc's favorite) and then we all sit around while Grandma Nora reads us a Christmas story. I love this tradition in Broc's family.
Here's the whole gang.


Grandma Sue also joined us this year and this picture was absolutely priceless!


After Grandma Nora's we went to my families house for the Wade family traditions. Every year we make hot chocolate while making reindeer food (oatmeal, glitter and chopped up carrots) and scatter it on the front lawn and then make a plate of cookies for Santa.



At Thanksgiving we draw names in the family and make them an original homemade gift to be opened on Christmas Eve. This is one of our very favorite parts of Christmas. This year's gifts were as follows
Dad made a gun tripod to shoot from for Broc
Mom made an apron from old jeans and fabric for Lexi
Broc made headphones out of earmuffs for Brynlee
I made a journal and scarf for Mom
Ashley Made a shirt and bow tie for Mitch
Taylor made a book of Psych quotes and pictures for Michael
Michael made a Coldplay bookmark for Ashley
Mitch made a plate of cookies for Dad
Brynlee made an apron from old fabric for me
Lexi made Taylor a Christmas ornament from tin foil for Taylor

And then the children were nestled all snug in their bed...

My favorite part of Christmas this year was seeing the face on this boy when he saw his present...

I think his exact words were "WHAT THE HECK?"
My second favorite part of Christmas was when Broc gave me a "coupon for a baby" and a video camera!

After a day full of family it was time for the Christmas Nativity program at Grandma Wade's. Broc was head Wiseman this year and of course I was Narrator #2 as always.

No wonder Christmas is always my favorite time of year. We have been surrounded by Family and friends and not to mention great food for weeks.
Hoping your Christmas Holiday was as full of love as ours.


The Boys are Back

Broc's Mom Jilynne has been waiting 4 patient years for her family to all be together again.
Broc left on his mission when Auston was only 17
and Auston left just a few months shy of Broc being home.

December 14th 2011 was a very happy day in the Hafen home.
Auston Duke Hafen returned home from serving in North Carolina.





The Hafen boys
What a handsome bunch!

Lots had happened since Broc had seen his little brother.
Two missions were served
One got married
and four years had passed
Broc kept saying "I can't believe how big he is!"
Auston kept saying "I can't believe you're married!"

Celebrity Look-Alike

It's kind of ridiculous how much these people in my family get told they look like celebrities.

Lincoln Burrows vs. Broc

Dad vs. Julian McMahon

Mom vs. Celine Dion

Taylor vs. Kiera Knightley

Man vs. Snow

Last week my family rented a cabin in Brian Head with a couple other family friends. This is one of our favorite things to do in the winter time, get together with family and friends in a warm cabin, drink hot chocolate and play games.
Last year Broc and I weren't able to make it when my family nearly froze to death in an avalanche up in salt lake when their cabin was buried in snow. This year they decided to go a little bit closer to home.
We were about to play murderer in the dark when I noticed Broc wasn't anywhere to be found. I went outside in the freezing, slipped quite a few times on ice (good thing nobody saw that) and yelled his name. This is where I found him... building his own little fire in the snow. He was fully aware that there was a nice big fireplace in the cabin. When I asked him if he was playing Man vs. Wild he just said "Nope, I'm playing Broc Hafen vs..... Broc Hafen. Funny boy I married.
I guess I'm reassured that if we were for whatever reason stuck in snow and needed a fire,
this boy could save us.

We had a fun time for the 12 hours that Broc and I were able to be there due to having to get back for work :/





December. When did you get here?

Well December sort of sneaked up on us. It wasn't until I came up for air from studying for finals, practicing for our dance concert and editing pictures that I realized the holidays are here! So I'm really behind on our lives right about now but I just wanted to check in and remind myself to breath and enjoy my favorite time of year.
P.S. Check out my hot date for our ward Christmas party! http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Q-wOfUkZKIw/Tua1aU1z4GI/AAAAAAAAA9g/GwM3qctaX8c/s1600/IMG_3296web.jpg


anniversary goodness

Broc and I both decided that the one year mark is a pretty big deal so why not celebrate all weekend. We both took Friday off of work so we could really start things off early. I woke up for my morning class on Friday and Broc handed me a piece of paper and said be there by 10:30 before he fell right back asleep. The paper had a map on it that lead me to a 1 hr massage!
I have never had a professional massage before so I was totally stoked.
And after dancing multiple times a week, my body sure needed one.

It was heaven.

When I got home Broc was looking all handsome and irresistible and behind him on the chair was the leather jacket I have wanted for so long. He did a great job. And he said it only took him 2 times to target and every store in the mall to find it. Isn't he the best?
But that's not all.

He handed me another sheet of paper. They were ticket to the Cirque du Soleil show "Ka" in Las Vegas. I screamed I was so excited. He said "Get dolled up because that's tonight". Of course then we went to Durangos for lunch and I gave him my gifts. He has wanted the Encyclopedia of Mormonism for such a long time now. I know, I married a camouflaged geek.
(He tells me that there is a fine line between a "nerd" and a "geek" and wants me to respect that)
I also got him new temple clothes because he has always rented and I wanted him to have his very own set. I think he was pleased.


We drove down to Vegas and I could hardly contain my excitement.
It was hard for me to keep my hands off of Broc too. I have one handsome husband.


The show was INSANE!! Seriously though.
Broc kept saying under his breath "OH MY GOSH! OH MY GOSH!"
and I kept holding my breath until I would realized I hadn't breathed through an entire song. I definitely recommend it.



We had to drive home that night to make my 5 am dance practice but as soon as that ended we started celebrating some more. We went to breakfast, the Jubilee of Trees, and then out to dinner with both of our parents.
To sit with our parents, the two most perfect marriages we know,
and have them tell us that they are proud of us and
our marriage meant more to me than they'll ever know.
Marriage is hard. It is tough. It is tiring. It is sacrifice.
But it is the best thing that has every happened to me.
I cannot believe Broc and I have one year down and an eternity to go.
I can't wait.


The best year of our lives

My mind is blown.
I cannot believe it has been one year since the day we got married.
It seems like just yesterday we were picking wedding colors, meeting with the caterer, and sewing beads on my dress.
Seriously where has the time gone?!
All I can say is that it has been the best year of my life.
Every time I refer to Broc as my "husband", I still get so happy and when I come home to our cute little place every day, I am reminded how wonderful marriage is.

Here are the highlights and memories of our first year together

I love you Broc Hafen.
Always have.
Always will.


beginning the holidays

This past Sunday we decided it was about time to take the annual family Christmas card photo. The ten of us piled into the suburban with a tripod, my camera and everyone in a clean pair of clothes. Everyone got set while I set the camera and then "click", I would RUN and dive into position just in time to smile before the self timer would go off. It was actually quite funny. At least the cop sitting in his car at the end of the street thought so as he watched the whole thing from a distance.
There's nothing like ringing in the holidays like snapping a photo dressed in jackets, boots and scarves to make everyone believe it's cold outside.
When really we all know it's still in the mid 60's.
Oh Christmas in Dixie... I can't wait.






Aint she a beauty?

When we got married we decided to buy my car from my parents.
They were giving it to us for a great price, we didn't have to deal with interest rates,
late payment fees
yadda yadda yadda...
& I loved my little civic.
It was perfect for getting me from point A. to point B.
Yeah sure it had a dent on every side and every couple months we had to take it in to the shop,
but I don't like change and I would have driven that baby until it died.
But Broc soon learned to hate her. Like really hate her.
So the car hunting began....
We are both super busy during the day so we spent our nights on ksl.








And just when we were about to give up...
We found her.


Don't worry. My civic is still in the family.
But I do love our new baby


Count your blessings

So midterms were yesterday and I've been pretty stressed about two particular tests. It's hard not to be when your teacher says "Just to let you know, the average for this test is a 65%. It's really really REALLY hard and you probably don't have a prayer at passing". Okay he didn't really say that last part to that extent, but pretty much scared the heck out of the class.

So yesterday my day's schedule went like this...
6:30 a.m. wake up and study/shower/pray for divine help on my exams
7:30 a.m. go to the college and study study study
11:00 a.m. take incredibly hard test
1:00 p.m. take another incredibly hard test
2:00 p.m. haul my tush to work
6:00 p.m. haul my tush to a Kalamity performance
8:00 p.m. maybe if I'm lucky see my husband for 2 seconds
8:30 p.m. adult hip hop class preparing for our FLASH MOB
9:30 p.m. Kalamity practice
11:00 p.m. Go home and die

I was feeling pretty bad for myself. It seems like just when I start feeling that way, Heavenly Father springs into action and teaches me a lesson. I remember praying on my way to school for help throughout the day to just make it through and on time to all of my obligations. I was still throwing my own pity party though.
I work at a bank so I get the chance to interact with a lot of people every day. Mostly because of our branch location, we have an older clientele and frequently see the same people on a day to day basis. One of the first clients that walked in was a man that we see all the time. As an ex navy seal, he is in his 60's, but has the body of a 30 year old. He is one of the toughest people I've every met but also one of the nicest. My co-worker greeted him and asked how he was doing and instead of his cheerful response, he answered with sadness in his eyes that he was having a lousy day. He then told us that his sweet wife had passed away that morning. I could hardly believe it.
Then Tom walked in the branch. We see Tom almost every day and he's always got a grin from ear to ear and loves talking with us. He too walked in a little somber. I asked him how he was doing and that he was looking a little down. He then told us that he woke up that morning and went out to his truck, but it was gone. Someone had stolen his truck that night. I couldn't believe that I was feeling bad about my day a couple minutes earlier. My guilt and sadness for these two clients/friends almost brought me to tears. I don't believe Heavenly Father allowed these bad things happen to them to teach me a lesson but I do believe He placed them in my day to make me grateful for my blessings. When you think you've got it bad, it's not hard to find someone who has got it far worse. I'm grateful for the reminder.
Count those blessings.

25 years of L.O.V.E.

There is something really special about celebrating 25 years of marriage and both of our parents celebrated that this year. Interestingly enough, both sets of our parents were high school sweethearts. It is so fun to hear about the early days of their courtships and their first years of marriage. I couldn't ask for any better examples of what a marriage should be like than that of our parents. Cheers to love!

We decided to crash Mom and Dad Hafen's anniversary getaway to Cedar Mountain. Ha we didn't really crash it, they invited us up for one day and I'm sure glad we were able to go. It was beautiful! The colors on the leaves were insane shades of orange, yellow and red. We hung out at Grandma Sue's cabin, drank wassail, rode 4-wheelers, chatted and laughed.
It was such a fun little getaway.





Every September

I have been going to the Lions Dixie Round up Rodeo every September since I can remember. We sit in the same seating with the same people watching the same events and the same Randy the rodeo clown.
It's the best.
and in the words of Garth Brooks...
"Well it's bulls and blood
It's dust and mud
It's the roar of a Sunday crowd
It's the white in his knuckles
The gold in the buckle
He'll win the next go 'round
It's boots and chaps
It's cowboy hats
It's spurs and latigo
It's the ropes and the reins
And the joy and the pain
And they call the thing rodeo"

I don't know of another time that I feel more American than sitting in the sun bowl with a hot dog in one hand and binoculars in the other.
When we left Broc even said "I want to be a cowboy"


Ten Years.

I remember it like it was just yesterday. I was on my way to the bus stop for what I thought was just going to be another normal day in the seventh grade. As I waited at the dirt lot with some friends, one of them said "Did you hear about the Twin Towers?".
I didn't even know what the Twin Towers were...

No one had much information, especially as 12 year olds but when we got on to the bus everyone was talking about it. When we got to school, all of the televisions in the classrooms were turned onto the news. Teachers forgot about their lesson plans and read us updates on the attacks. There was just a somber mood that overcame the halls of Desert Hills Intermediate School.
Mrs. Jensen came in to our history class and said, "Students, I want you to remember today-today is when all of our lives are going to change."

I remember thinking the world was going to end. I was so scared for what these attacks would mean for the future. I just wanted to go home and have my Dad tell me everything was going to be alright.

There is no doubt that America lost so much that day.
But out of the ruin and the rubble, America truly became