Monday, December 31, 2012

Our Wonderful Family

Here's to 2012

Celebrated the end of 2012 and the beginning of 2013 tonight with sparkling apple cider and brownies.  Doesn't get better than that.  :)

Our favorite memories from 2012...
Kailei - the trip to China and seeing the panda bears
Keara - she like the whole year
Zeb - the trip to China and seeing Kailei's ayi's again
Chris - the trip to Breckenridge with Aunt Carla and riding the Alpine Slide

Our resolutions...
Kailei - exercise
Keara - eat healthy
Zeb - exercise more
Chris - spend more time with family and drink more water

Family Dinner

Our annual family dinner had to be postponed until after Christmas this year due to our busy schedules but we made it happen tonight.  Got together for dinner at Mt. Fugi.  Food was great but it is more memorable to be out to dinner with everyone.  Looking forward to next year already. 

Sunday, December 30, 2012


Escaped with friends Scott and Britt for an early New Year's celebration.  We headed to Maggiano's which is a great Italian restaurant.  Enjoyed great food and even better company.  I don't have any pictures of us but trust me when I say that we all looked great.  :)

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

The Archer Christmas

My favorite tradition...breakfast at Grammy's house.  I eat a hard roll and sausage so I'm not sure why it is my favorite thing but it is.  We all converged at Grammy's around 10am and enjoyed all her fixin's.  Once again she spoiled us all with gifts.  Each year she says it is a bad year, that she is cutting back etc but we find that really isn't the truth.  Enjoyed all of our gifts.  Some of the highlights include the Bronco horse head that Sydney gave Mark, the hand-carved Indian arrow that Mark gave Dad, the computer Dad got from us all, and all the gifts the kids so carefully picked out for everyone.  We missed having Kevin's family with us but we got to skype with them so that was fun. 

Christmas Morning

The girls didn't wake up too early which was good.  They were excited to see what was under the tree this year.  Kailei actually said she wished there were 8 days of Christmas (but her parents are glad there aren't).  The big gift this year for the girls was a kindle fire.  Apparently it was a good one because they have been on it non-stop ever since.  Both girls got clothes, books and American Girl items.  I'm pretty sure they were happy with their gifts.

The girls also gave us some neat gifts as well.  Zeb got some basketball cards and a flashlight from Kailei.  I got some notepaper that she made.  Keara was just as thoughtful.  We loved our gifts.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve

Phyllis joined us for Christmas Eve this year which was special.  As usual we went to church an hour early to get a seat.  Thank goodness for that because the priest started 15 minutes early.  Never had that happen before but I guess he thought he might as well start since the church was full. 

After dinner we headed over to our house for our traditional "party food".  Mitch and family joined us as well as my friend Judith.  It is always nice to have even more folks to celebrate with. 

We weren't organized enough to get any group shots this year.  Maybe next?


I love getting to celebrate the holidays with our friends as well as family.  Had the Wymans over for breakfast this morning.  Zeb made snowman and butterfly pancakes.  The kids exchanged gifts and were all thankful.  We are lucky to have this family to share in the good times and bad. 

Sunday, December 23, 2012

The Santa Express

I've been waiting forever for this day.  Long ago I bought these tickets for The Santa Express which is a train ride through the Royal Gorge complete with elves, Santa, cookies, hot cocoa and lunch.  I was so excited and we didn't tell the girls anything.  They had to endure a two hour car ride down to Canyon City and it was not easy keeping things a secret.  Naturally the girls were thrilled when they found out what we were doing.  I was excited because I also booked upper deck where there was a view all around us.  We had lunch on the train and enjoyed a slow ride up the canyon.  It was beautiful but I think I would like the Santa Express even more at night.  Kids get to wear their pj's and the Christmas lights make for some great atmosphere as stories get read to us and dancing occurs in the isles.  The girls got to visit with Santa and it was all just plane fun. 

The Davison Christmas

Christmas was bittersweet as we had our first one without Zeb's dad.  Phyllis drove up and Mitch hosted.  As usual, Lieu cooked up way more food than needed but we managed to put a dent in it.  The kids had a blast and enjoyed being with each other.  John, Margaret and Paula joined us for dinner and then we watched a bunch of old slides Mitch found.  It was fun to see just how cute Zeb was when he was little. 

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Our Hairstylist

Shari is a part of the family.  I've been having her cut my hair since college (which is getting to be a long time ago).  Enjoy the girl's time each month on our trek to Greeley.  Thanks for making us beautiful Shari!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Cookie Day

Christmas came way too soon this year and with little time for preparations.  Quite honestly, cookie day was in jeopardy but without cookie day, there are no cookies at the Archer's on Christmas day so it had to get done.  Lynn, my partner in crime, agreed to come over today after a long day at work for the both of us.  In hindsight this was not my best idea.  We had lots of baking mishaps.  I started by trying to make a cornflake wreath and following a recipe off the internet.  The amount of butter in the recipe pretty much make it marshmallow soup so I just had to toss it.  I then asked Lynn to make the snickerdoodle cookies and because it was Grandma's recipe and Keara didn't exactly write down all the instructions, Lynn just mixed everything together at once which resulted in a pile of clumpy, unusable dough that had to get thrown out.  Then I wanted to make coconut haystacks and I quick mixed up a batch of chocolate and threw it on the coconut.  It wasn't until the middle of the night when I realized that I forgot to cook the coconut. Lynn said, "It was a cookie day for the books."  We laughed lots and managed to make a couple of usable treats for Christmas day.  Our helpers were there for the sugar cookies but then bailed on us.  We still look forward to the day when they make all the cookies and we just watch.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Kailei's Piano Recital

After another year of piano, Kailei participated in a holiday recital.  Students picked their favorite Christmas songs to play.  Kailei chose Joy to the World and Little Drummer Boy.  We heard it a million times prior to this evening but it is always special on recital night.  Kailei was nervous but I told her that it didn't matter if she goofed up, that she just needed to do her best, and that we would still love her no matter what.  I loved when she responded with a simple, "Thanks Mom."  Poppy and Grammy joined us and were of course very proud grandparents. 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Winter Wonderland

So Keara has been working for a quite a while on a geometry project in school.  Basically students had to use their geometry skills to build something out of cardboard.  Keara chose to build a veterinary clinic.  I had heard about it occasionally but today we got invited to the school to view the products.  I was pleasantly surprised to be entertained by a choreographed light show and a visit through the winter wonderland that the students created.  It was amazing!  I love these kinds of projects and Keara did a GREAT job with her building. 

Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Nutcracker

Lucy and Frances were in The Nutcracker this Christmas so of course we had to get tickets.  We went last year and enjoyed the show at our local theatre.  This year would be even more fun knowing a few cast members.  The girls did great as gingersnaps.  We just might see Kailei involved with the show next year.  Who knows?

Saturday, December 15, 2012

JCCC Party

Ended the year with a little party in Kailei's Chinese class.  She is fortunate to still have her friend Catie in class with her.  She has a great teacher this year and they did a little skit for us.  Wish I knew more Chinese. :)

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Keara's Choir Concert

After practicing before school twice a week, Keara had her choir concert.  She did awesome!  We are so proud of her.  Grammy and Poppy enjoyed her performance as well.  We were packed in like sardines but it was worth it. 

Monday, December 3, 2012

Kailei's Ballet Class

I tried desperately to get her into hip hop but no luck.  She is in ballet and loving it.  We got to sit in on the class today and watch the kids in action.  Fun!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

MWCC Holiday Party

It was amazing!  The entire Mom's with Children from China group made the holiday party this year.  It was soooo nice to everyone together.  The kids are getting so big.  The weather was great so the kids got to be outside for a while and then we had our traditional potluck dinner. 

I put together a highlight video again so enjoy if you have the access.