Monday, December 31, 2007

Picture Perfect
December 2007
Jolie Alexis Mecham
4 years

Bronson Owens Mecham
1 year

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Merry Christmas!!
On Christmas morning Ben and I had to wake the kids up at 7:30. They had a little cold the day before and felt like sleeping in. When we went to get Jolie out of bed, all I said was, "Santa came last night." I have never seen her jump out of bed so fast. Needless to say she was very excited.

Bronson is our little decorator. We put up a little tree for the kids to play with. He saw us decorating our real tree so he decided to help. He came up and put his toy car in the tree and since then he puts anything and everything on the little tree (candy canes, bows, tinsel, or any small toy).

The Fab Four

Trey (son of Del & Tina), Gus (son of Brain & Nicole), Bronson (our son), & Kellen (son of Shawn & Colette)

All of these Boyz were born in 2006 and are cousins on the Mecham side.

So we turned the chair around to have the boyz look over it....but they weren't too excited about that. Bronson was deciding what he should do. First he looked at Kellen and noticed him crying --

Then he looked over at Trey and noticed he was crying too --

So he decided to follow along. Meanwhile Gus is in the back going, "What is wrong with these guys?!?"

After a round of candy canes and Uncle Shawn beating himself up in the background, the boyz were smiling for more pictures.

During all the picture taking, Ben helped fix the Green Machine so Max could take Jolie around the block for a ride. It was too bad shortly later the seat on the Green Machine broke off.

Jolie and Zane at dinner time.

We love spending time with the Mecham Family. It is always good to see everyone and make lasting memories. You all mean so much to us.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Joy School Nativity Play

Jolie posing as an angel.

Amber, Jolie, Bryant, Maddie, Jackson, and Hunter at the end of the play. It was so funny to watch the kids do their little presentation. Half the costumes fell off, the inn keeper wouldn't answer the door, and little babies (Bronson & Emily) wanted to be in the action. All the parents were cracking up.

Jolie and Maddie looking so cute.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Mecham House is Done!!
(that is -- the gingerbread house)
back view

front view

side view

top view

I know, I know it's not the real house but at least one house got done this year. Amberly did the frosting and Jolie put the candies on. It was a long process but we had a lot of fun making it.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow!

Snow is magical in many different ways. It will be bitter cold outside, the ground is frozen, and most trees have lost their leaves. The wind stops blowing as the clouds roll in and then a wonderful thing happens. The snow drifts in and fills your body with warmth and joy. Our kids cannot control their smiles. As they run outside in whatever clothes they have on with open mouths trying to catch snowflakes on their tongue. All they want to do is eat the snow. Forgetting how cold it really is our fingers and noses turn red as can be. Bronson didn't care how cold he was. He could play in the snow all day if we let him. So we started the fire place and made some hot chocolate to warm up and then headed back outside for some more snow fun.

Friday, December 07, 2007


This year we only had Thanksgiving with the Mecham Family. The festivities took place at the traditional location -- Brian and Nicole Mason's house in Mesa. That's probably because their house is the biggest and nicest of all of ours. (Hmm, I wonder who could have built such a fine home?...) Anyway, it was a lot of fun and the cousins couldn't get enough of each other.
Bronson and Kellen (Shawn and Colette's boy) took turns riding the bus/scooter/car/whatever that thing is.

Kellen is such a photogenic ham it's too hard to resist snapping some pictures of him at his best.

Suddenly we couldn't find Jolie anywhere and after a while we found her in a bedroom watching a movie with her cousin Bridger (Holly and Jared's boy.) Check out the identical cheesy smiles!

Dad and Jen carving the turkey while Jared monitors the progress.

As any man will tell you, that turkey tryptophan hits us the hardest (yeah, that's it...,) making it pretty much impossible to participate in any cleanup after a Thanksgiving dinner. Why can't the women understand this?

Thanks to the Masons for footing the gas bill to heat up their spa in November, the cousins got to take a dip! But nothing stopped them from testing out the frigid water in the pool. Yikes!

From left to right (parents in parentheses): Chance (Jen & Cory), Tyler (Holly & Jared), Jolie (us), Max (Nicole and Brian), Zane (Nicole and Brian), Brandon (Holly & Jared), and Jake (Nicole and Brian).

Zane, Jolie, and Chance taking a train ride down the slide!

The Girls: Amberly, Nicole, Holly, Jen, and Colette.


Right before Thanksgiving we spontaneously decided to drop everything and head for Disneyland. We had some free tickets to the park, so that helped keep it short and cheap. We dressed the kids up in their Halloween costumes and got an entire lifetime's worth of coos and giggles from passersby. After a while it got a little irritating, but I have to say, we have some cute kids! Disneyland just decorated everything for Christmas, so it's our favorite time to go. Plus, we figured it wouldn't be too packed. Wrong. It's amazing the people that cram into that place. Even in the "off season" it was way too crowded for my liking. And with the ever-impatient Bronson, waiting in lines for more than 30 seconds was trying. We waited in line for almost an hour at the Haunted Mansion with people around us in the line helping to entertain the little guy. Then, we were told the ride was having technical difficulties and they were shutting it down! Nevertheless, we had an enjoyable time and the Christmas theme at the park is really amazing.

Jolie went to a class to learn to be a princess (as if she didn't already have a huge princess complex.) She had an absolute blast.

We couldn't keep the cast members away from Squirt!

If you ever want your kids to get special attention at Disneyland, make sure you dress them up!

Princess Jolie at her coronation. The transformation to a real princess is complete. Now Jolie thinks she has special privileges because she's a real princess. Oh well, gotta let girls be girls every once in a while!

A tired and grumpy Bronson (a.k.a. Squirt) in the Haunted Mansion line.

This is really what Disneyland was about for me. Seeing my girls happy.

Newport Beach

And of course what is a trip to California without a visit to the beach? We made a quick detour on the way home and we were seriously there 15 minutes. It's too bad because Bronson just lit up in amazement at all the sand he could play in. Of course, we didn't let him -- we wouldn't have been able to tear him away! The beach is definitely at the top of our list for upcoming vacations.

Jolie was convinced there were secret things buried in the sand like gold and magic shells. I swear, the poor kid has no imagination!

Bronson touching the ocean for the first time. I didn't dare put him down.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Prescott Valley does the standard "Trunk or Treat" activity in the church parking lot, which includes all four Prescott Valley wards and usually a pretty big mass of people. Meanwhile the town's streets are pretty much deserted. Why bother going door to door when you can go car to car? I think the time is coming when trick-or-treating will pretty much disappear and everyone will just throw parties. Kinda sad. Anyway, the last two years we went kinda generic and just had a couple Halloween decorations on our car, but this time we decided to do something a little cooler. We brought the truck and turned it into a graveyard complete with haunted house on the hill and spooky music! I know, pretty sweet... We busted out a black light and shined it on all the fluorescent paint and it turned out great. The best part is it's all cardboard so we'll just fold up the pieces and use them again next year (with a few minor improvements.)
Amberly was a Japanese geisha and I was a Samurai. I even borrowed a real katana (that's a sword.) Cute couple theme, huh? Well, I think we might need to work on our costumes a little more. Maybe next year... Jolie was Rani, the "water talent" fairy from a series of books she likes. She was getting her wings caught in the masses of kids so we took them off and forgot to put them back on for the picture. Bronson was Squirt, the little sea turtle in Finding Nemo. Too bad I don't have a picture of him crawling around in his costume. It's hilarious.

Amberly and Jolie made some really top-notch pumpkins. Well, they didn't make them, they carved them. Notice the Frankenstein monster one in the top picture. It's really good, but the one that everyone kept asking about was the crazy polka dot one. Amberly used one of those melon ball scoopers to make the big craters and a drill and spade bit for the smaller holes that go all the way through. The craters kinda glow because the pumpkin is thin there and the holes obviously are bright. It's a really neat effect that got everyone's attention.
New home construction update --
The walkout basement of our new house is framed and we're almost ready to do the backfill against all the retainer walls and pour the garage slab. Then the main floor can be framed. It doesn't look like much in the pictures, but there are over 1500 square feet in the basement alone. That's bigger than the entire house we are living in now!

Friday, July 06, 2007