Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Christmas 2008

Merry Christmas!
On Christmas morning we opened our presents as usual. The last present the kids opened said to pack your bags because we were headed to San Diego in 3 hours. Apparently everyone was excited to go because we were on the road in 2 hours.
We got out of town just in time as well because there was a masive storm that hit town just after we left and we drove through wind and rain the whole way down it seemed.

We stopped at Grandpa and Val's house to deliver their present. It was good to see their Christmas fun as well.
In San Diego we stayed in La Jolla north of San Diego a few miles. It was just over the freeway from the San Diego temple, which provided a nice view in the evenings.

On Friday we went to the "Happiest Place on Earth." No not Mickey Mouse land, but Shamu land. We absolutley love Sea World!

The crowds were light and the shows were great. The only downside was that the temperature was a little low to ride Atlantis too much and be wet for the rest of the day. So we only rode it twice and wore our rain slickers. They had a lot of Christmas twists to the shows and the park was all decked out for the holiday. A couple of highlights for us were the "Dine with Shamu" and "Behind the Scenes Tour." We had never done those before and it was a great way to see a little more than we have before.

On Saturday we went into San Diego and went on a charter boat out on the ocean to look for whales and dolphis. We were able to follow one California Gray whale for a half hour or so. We were not able to see any dolphins but saw some sea lions (or were they seals?) and plenty of birds. The only down side to the boat ride was that the ocean created a little motion sickness for us. We just aren't used to that motion in Utah you know!

We did some shopping at a nice mall and found some after Christmas deals and went out to see the sun set to end our quick little getaway.

It was a great trip and should provide some great memories to look back on.
We hope you all enjoyed the Christmas season as well.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Return to WVC

This past Saturday and Sunday we had the opportunity to return to our old stomping grounds. It was a great weekend and we were able to visit with many good friends. Sydney stayed the night at Katie's and went to a region dance and saw some friends from school. The rest of us stayed at the Hampton Inn in Jordan Landing. Nice place!
Sunday we went to church in our old ward. We went up to Salt Lake to be able to hear J.T. speak in sacrament prior to his departure for an LDS mission this week. J.T. is an awesome young man that we all hold in high regard in our house. He has been an example to so many and will be a great missionary.
Then we stopped out at Dave and Karon's to exchange Christmas gifts. We had a great time visiting and playing with the kids but had to leave early because of some pretty heavy winter weather that had been hitting Utah.
It was a great weekend getaway!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Our Christmas Letter...

Merry Christmas!
What a wonderful time of year. As a family we wish the best for you and hope that all is well for our family and friends. You all mean so much to us and we are grateful to you.
As we prepare for Christmas and wrap up 2008, we reflect on a year full of laughs, some tears and many changes.
The year began with Vicki content at Harmon’s in the HR Department. Rich was happy at Hunter High as a Technology Specialist but was busy interviewing for possible administrative jobs . Sydney and Skyler were both doing well at Matheson Jr High playing volleyball.
In April Rich was offered an appointment as a full time administrative intern at Granite Park Middle School in Granite School District. It is the traditional way of getting an administrative job in Granite and was a good step to say the least.
The first week in June, Rich had an interview for an assistant principal job at Canyon View High School in Cedar City. Four hours later when Vicki and Rich arrived back home the phone rang and the principal from Canyon View was on the other end offering the position. We excitedly, and nervously, accepted and three days later put the house up for sale and went on a vacation with Dave (Rich’s brother) and Karon’s family to Mesa Verde and Arches. We had an amazing time camping and the kids loved spending time with the cousins. While we were at Mesa Verde our real estate agent left a message letting us know we had received an offer on the home. It had been on the market for less than a week in the middle of a terrible housing market.
When we arrived back home we took a trip to Cedar City and looked for a house. We had gone through 11 houses and had one house remaining. According to the agent the owner didn’t want us into the house that early so we thought we would skip it. After one more phone call, though, we were able to get into the home. We made an offer on that house and were able to move in 4 weeks later.
So with all of the excitement and trepidation that comes with the prospect of moving 200 miles away, reality soon set in and we were busy packing and driving ourselves to our new home and life in Enoch. Along with the fear of making new friends and having new neighbors comes the realization of how much we truly miss our dear friends in West Valley. We have been blessed to have some truly amazing friends in our old neighborhood and at work that it is difficult to find words to say thank you sufficiently. Rich was fortunate to have had the opportunity to serve as bishop to so many wonderful people. He particularly misses the youth and primary children.
That being said, it is abundantly clear that we were led in this whole process by our Heavenly Father. We have been so blessed to have everything work out as it has. Rich loves his job at Canyon View. It is a perfect fit for his background and is a wonderful school district to be a part of. Because there are only two administrators in the school, he is gone during the sports seasons at least 3 nights per week. But he loves all of the activities so it is hard to complain.
Vicki began working for Iron County in the Human Resource Department in September. It is just her and the H.R. Director and she is enjoying it. She is also learning payroll to be the backup person for the county. She has been part time which has made it nice to be home earlier than she has been used to at Harmons.
Sydney is a sophomore at Canyon View High. She was on the volleyball team and is involved in National Honor Society. She has made some good friends and appears to be adjusting well to having her dad be the assistant principal. She uses his office as her own and appears to think that there is also an ATM in the office when she needs it. She is also loving the choir program here which is excellent.
Skyler is at Canyon View Middle School (across the street from the high school). He is doing great in school and has continued to take piano lessons (getting quite good). He has some great friends both at school and in the neighborhood. He also is becoming quite a runner and is growing taller and taller.
Smokey, The Guard Cat, survived the move to the new home. He was particularly nervous for the first month, and still hates to go downstairs, but he is back to his usual self (if that is a possibility). He also hates the garage door noise, but he will be gone way before we get rid of the garage.
We truly hope you have a wonderful holiday season and that this letter finds you all in good spirits. We love and appreciate you. If you would like to occasionally check in on us, Rich has set up a family blog. Feel free to check it out if you have time and interest. http://enochnielsens.blogspot.com/
The Enoch Nielsen’s – Vicki, Rich, Sydney, Skyler