Monday, January 7, 2013


We put off our trip to Utah for a couple of days because we had some serious business to attend to here in Eugene.
 We hit up the ward Christmas party.  The idea was that all the families would be assigned to tables and that each table would bring its own side dishes.  This was another one of those moments that being assigned to the Spanish Branch section ended up being a bonus because we had the best tamales that I've ever tasted.

It was the first year that I was actually in town to attend the highly acclaimed Cookie Queen contest.  Dianna Robinson has hosted this event for a few years now and apparently the competition is getting more and more intense each year.  I didn't want to look like a loser so I pulled out the most butter-laden recipe that I could find.  It was the Congo Bar recipe that I learned from my friend Katrina and as they say on Sesame Street it is definitely a "sometimes food."  Think oatmeal, chocolate and a lot of caramel.  It was good enough for first place in the bar cookie and candy category.  All the cookies were awesome and it was super fun.  Now I've got to start brainstorming for next year.  Thanks to Dianna and to Jen the outgoing cookie queen who was truly an ambassador for the cause.
 And then we came to the real reason that we stuck around town.  Gaby's quinceñera has been the talk of the girls in young women for the last 6 months.  I've never been to one and always wanted to, and this was the perfect opportunity to dress the girls up like princesses.
Gaby looked beautiful and it was fun to see her honored. 
 I've had Gaby, Savannah and Lizzy all since they were brand new Beehives and they are growing up so fast. 

We left directly from the party and hit the road, driving all night through a snowstorm.  There were a few times that I thought we were going to be stuck out there because we had gone too far to go back, but we were in a big snowy mess.  In the end, slow and steady, we made it through to the morning.  Rocky and Daisy got the loopy car trip crazies as always.
 Rosy was just chillin' like nothing had happened.  I think she was fascinated by the glow of the snow.
 Last year we didn't even get a single snowflake while we were in Utah and we had made all kinds of promises to Rocky that she could go sledding and make a snowman.  Her disappointment last year didn't stop me from making the same promises this year, but luckily the sky came through.  I'm not sure that I was so thrilled that we had to drive through it, but it was fun once we got out of the car.
 We got there just in time for another party with my dad's family.  I couldn't resist how cute Grandma and Grandpa Howard are with these kids.

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