Thursday, December 31, 2009

20 Months & 10 days

As I have been trying to pack and get ready to move, I've been going through some of Kate's clothes and picking out the ones that Mia can fit in to, setting them aside and boxing up those that she has outgrown. Each little outfit of Kate's has so much meaning and it's so great {for me} to see Mia wearing her little skirts and jammies and bows and shoes. After Kate passed away, I didn't think I could bear to have anyone else wear them, even her little sister. It was a debate I had with myself the three weeks before Mia was born. I finally made the decision that I wanted to have sweet memories of Kate every day. Having these small little reminders of her each day sure puts a smile on my face.

Kate was 20 months and 10 days when she passed away. As I was organizing her clothes and thinking back to the time that Kate wore each little outfit, I started thinking that Mia would be close to the same age now that Kate was when she died. I did the math and realized that Mia is exactly 20 months and 10 days today. These are small tender mercies, but I am so grateful that I have them every now and then.

My brother, Greg, gave the most beautiful talk at Kate's funeral. He gave an analogy of Kate and Mia at the airport; Kate returning from a wonderful trip and Mia getting ready for a new adventure. They see each other; Kate going one way and Mia going the other. When they meet, they embrace each other and Mia asks Kate to tell her all about this wonderful trip and the people she met. Kate tells her:

1) Get used to having dumb curlers in your hair because Mom is obsessed with curlers.
2) Don't get attached to ANYTHING because dad loves selling things
3) Oh, and you will probably have a sweet tooth because mom LOVES treats, and dad does too!

I love to imagine the reunion they must have had. I miss Kate EVERY day, but am so very grateful for Mia and the sweet reminder of Kate she is. They are two very different, but special, angels to me and I feel so very lucky that I am their mama!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Naughty and the Nice

The Jolly Ol' Fella sure was good to some of this year and not so good to others. Let's start off with Miss Mia:

She must have been on Santa's "good girl list" even with her love/hate relationship with Santa (see previous post). Her eyes lit up immediately when she saw this gem that was left under the Christmas tree. She couldn't wait to take "Kitty" for a spin (after spin after spin). Poor Kitty!

An aspiring princess, Santa brought the most important accessories, but forgot the most vital.....the gown!

Santa must have known that Mia would be spending A LOT of time at the beach this upcoming year and left her this shabby little number. What a bathing beauty!!!

As for me, Santa brought a new, sophisticated (as Bryan describes it) look this year.....not sure if that puts me on his good girl list or not???

Last but not least.....Bryan must have been on Santa's naughty list this year as he brought him a torn Achilles tendon with surgery 2 days before Christmas. He also brought him a nice slip on the ice (on Christmas Eve) and an almost trip to the ER. Thank goodness Santa is a good man and ended up just giving him a nice bruised hand.

As the new year approaches, the Rosenvall's all aspire to be on Santa's "Nice" list this coming year. We hope you all had a Merry Christmas and wish you an even happier New Year!!!

Monday, December 14, 2009

No Need for Explanation......

....Her Face Says It All!!!!

Merry Christmas Everyone!!!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Birthdays, Trees, Lights And A Time To Be Thankful.....

I can't believe how fast Thanksgiving has come and gone. It is definitely my very favorite holiday....for many reasons:

1. Spending time with family
2. Eating....eating.....and more eating!
3. A certain someone was born on Thanksgiving Day!!!
4. A time to reflect on the MANY things to be grateful for.

The week before Thanksgiving we drove to California to look for a place to live. On the way down we stayed in Mesquite and I ran my 11th half marathon. I'm hoping to run one more before the end of the year, but I don't think it's going to happen people. Someone, please remind me that when making this coming year's new year's resolutions to not commit to something physical. I think this year I'm just going to stick with the old "I'm going to stop drinking Diet Coke this year" resolution and then fail miserably before New Year's Day is over :) Mia is also making a New Year's Resolution to lay off the DC.....Such great parenting.
We had a great time in San Diego. Bryan worked most the time we were down there and so it was up to me to go to the housing appointments. Let me just say that I am THANKFUL for GPS or I would've been a lost mess. We found a place in Oceanside and we'll be moving the middle to end of January. This is so bitter-sweet as we are really looking forward to the adventure, but I don't know what I'm going to do being so far from our family and dear friends. We just hope we have LOTS of visitors!!!
On our way back from California, we stayed in Fillmore for Thanksgiving. It was so much fun having my whole family there (except for Jeff who will be coming home in June.....YAY). The weather was so nice and so it made it so much easier cutting trees this year (a Thanksgiving tradition). There's nothing I love more than a fresh cut Christmas tree.

On Tuesday we celebrated Finn's 1st birthday at Kangaroo Zoo. This is the first time Mia has been there and couldn't get enough of it. Here's the handsome birthday boy:

The highlight of the party was definitely the cupcakes......and a mighty fine cupcake it was!
And yes.......I celebrated birthday #31. Where did those 31 years go?? There's no better way to celebrate your birthday (belated) than Girl's Night Out. It's been almost 9 years since I graduated from college and I feel so fortunate to keep in contact with some of my old roommates. We spent hours laughing and reminiscing about the good ol' SUU days. Good times. And last but not least.......the lights at Temple Square.

Monday, November 30, 2009

My "Back-Burner" Blog

It seems that my blog has been put on the bottom of my checklist as of late. I have great intentions of keeping it up-to-date, but it seems that "higher priority" things have gotten in the way. But, that is going to change. When Kate passed away, 2 of my dear friends put money towards having Kate's blog printed in book-form. This meant so much to me and I was so excited to get it done, especially fearing that there could be a glitch on blogger and I could lose all of those precious memories forever. However, it was harder and more emotional than I ever thought it would be. Having her sweet life documented meant the world to me, but it was so difficult for me to click on that link and re-visit those emotions. A year and a half later, I was able to muster up the courage to do it and here is the end result.......Ta Da:So having this tangible reminder of our Angel Kate, it became clear to me that I need to be better about documenting our lives not only for us, but for our posterity. In the past I've found myself questioning whether I should post certain things, not wanting to broadcast it to the entire blogging world. These things are an important part of our lives and, therefore, I want to document them. With that being said, I have decided to finally go PRIVATE!!! It probably won't come to pass until the first of the year. So in the meantime, please send me your e-mail address in a comment or e-mail me at:

Sunday, November 15, 2009

May I Please Introduce To You.....

.....Senorita Mia!!!This year for Halloween, all Mia wanted to be was a Spanish dancer......and a darn cute Spanish dancer might I add.

She is at such a fun age right now and this Halloween was so much fun with her. Although she didn't quite understand the whole "trick-or-treating" bit, she definitely loved the candy part and was on a sugar high all day long. We went and visited great-grandma and grandpa Christensen and also grandma and grandpa Rosenvall.

Blowing kisses

Grandma has a little stuffed squirrel that Mia adores. Every time we go and visit, Mia goes straight for the squirrel and mauls it. Grandma knew how much Mia loved it and wanted so badly for Mia to have it, but it was a gift from Grandpa and was very special to her. When we went over on Halloween Grandma had bought this little kitty and put it in the place where the squirrel normally is. Mia, of course, went right for it. She took the kitty, hugged it, threw it on the floor, laid on it as it were a pillow and wouldn't let it go. I think she liked it just a little bit. Her new favorite word is "Eeeeow."

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Roper/Rosenvall European Vacation!!!

8 Crazy American Tourists + 6 Countries in 10 Days = Good Times!

This was our sweet ride the 8 passenger Peugeot.

Check out the double decker cargo space. It's a miracle it all fit.

We took the direct flight from Salt Lake to Paris and after 9 LONG hours, it's amazing that we can manage those BIG grins!

Day 1

Paris, France

The Louvre

We spent the first 2 days in Paris. Our first destination was the Louvre. It was incredible. After spending some time there, you sure gain a greater appreciation for art.

The Mona Lisa

It was hard getting a good picture of the painting as it was enclosed in glass. Hmmm...who's she "really" looking at!

The architecture of the inside of the building was quite interesting. There are hallways upon hallways of paintings and statues.

The Eiffel Tower

We rode the elevator to the very top. It was bitter cold and the wind was blowing like crazy. However, it was absolutely beautiful. I took some pictures from the top but because of all the lights from the city, it turned out a blurred mess :(

Day 2

We stayed in a darling little villa right outside of Paris in Bailly-Romainvilliers.

The second day we spent seeing the French country. Dad is a HUGE fan of old presses {apple presses, grape presses, you name it}. Let's just say that there's definitely not a shortage of them in "wine country."

You would not believe the rows and rows of vines. I can only imagine the massive amounts of wine produced.

Oh, and I can't forget to mention the PASTRIES!!! Oh My......were they ever so divine? These particular ones were my favorite.

This is exactly what I envisioned the French country to look like. I just love the window boxes with the fountain of flowers.

Asking some locals for directions. They were so sweet.....and helpful too.


Louis the thirteenth's successor, Louis XIV, had a great interest in Versailles. He had grown up during the disorder of the Fronde, a civil war between rival factions of aristocrats, and wanted a site where he could organize and completely control a government of France by absolute personal rule. He settled on the royal hunting lodge at Versailles and over the following decades had it expanded into one of the largest palaces in the world.It's like looking out the backdoor at my courtyard.......oh wait!

The second night we spent back in Paris. If you look closely, you can see the Eiffel Tower in the background.

Day 3

We packed up and headed to our next destination.......Frankfurt, Germany.
Along the way, we stopped in Reims, France and attended Sacrament Meeting at a small ward building. A few people spoke English, including the missionaries, and the whole meeting was in French. Even though we didn't understand anything that was being said, the Spirit was so strong. It was confirmed to me that the church is true regardless of where you are in the world. Everyone was so friendly and welcoming. This was such a neat experience for us.

After church we hit the road for Germany. It took us almost the entire day to drive to Frankfurt. We got there in the early evening and went and got a bite to eat. I can't believe I didn't take one picture. I must say, however, that the food in Germany was awesome!!!

Day 4

Prague, Czech Republic

The best part of the trip is that we had no plans (this is how the Roper's vacation). We had talked about spending the majority of the trip in Italy, but decided to visit Prague. I'm so glad we did because this was probably one of the biggest highlights of the trip. The city was magnificent. We stayed right in the "Centre" and spent the evening walking around and admiring the beauty of the city.

We dined at some fabulous restaurants. One great thing about Europe is their pastries and desserts {as mentioned above}. Check out those crepes!

Most every hotel we stayed in charged around $20 for Internet service. I was very grateful for Bryan's "Man Purse." He was able to take his laptop with him and connect to the WiFi in the restaurant so we could call home through Skype.

Day 5

The dollar was very weak in Europe. We had some breakfast at McDonald's one morning and it cost us nearly an arm and a leg.

We decided that we wanted to take city tour of Prague. Doesn't this picture scream "Tourist??"

The main stop on the tour was the Prague Castle. This castle is the only European castle that houses any government entity.
This little quartet sat and played outside of the castle. The music just added to the ambiance.

Couldn't leave Prague without having a famous "street" frank!

After the city tour we hopped in the car and headed for Innsbruck, Austria. The drive through the Austrian Alps was absolutely beautiful.Here we stopped in a little ski village. Not enough snow yet to hit the slopes.

Day 6We had the most picturesque view from our hotel room.

We got up early and drove through the Austrian Alps into Bavaria, Germany where we visited the Neuschwanstein Castle.

Neuschwanstein is one of the most popular castles in Europe. The castle was about 1/3 complete when King Ludwig II was killed in 1886. Seven weeks later, the castle was open to the public.

Jordan looks like he fits right in.

The interior of the castle was amazing. All of the walls and ceilings were hand-painted.

This picture was taken from the very upper level of the castle. How would you like to have that veiw?

This picture doesn't do the kitchen justice. This would definitely be my dream kitchen!

Another shot from the top of the castle.

This castle, Hohenschwangau, is located just below Neuschwanstein and is where King Ludwig II grew up.

Day 7

Italy {Venice}

This is exactly what I pictured Venice to be like.
It had been raining quite a bit and so the water level was really high. It was crazy to see water flowing into the various businesses and homes. I guess they just have to get used to it.

Milan, Italy

We got a chance to visit Sister Wilcox. She's a family friend serving in Milan. It was so much fun to see her and visit with her. From what we were told, she is an amazing missionary.

Later that night we stopped at a little pizza joint and had the opportunity to have some "real" Italian Pizza.....Mmmmm!

Day 8


We headed up into the Swiss Alps on a winding little road, tunel through tunel, in hopes of making it to Interlochen. We never made it, as the road was closed because of snow. However, the drive was totally worth it. These pictures don't do it justice.

We made our way into Lucerne, Switzerland later that afternoon. Lucerne is know for its famous wooden bridge. It crosses the Reuss River in the city of Lucerne, is the oldest wooden bridge in Europe and one of Switzerland's main tourist attractions.

I think I have died and gone to heaven!!!

Bryan scoping out the local fruit stand.

Day 9

Approaching the end of our trip, we started making our way back to Paris. We took the country roads into Germany and stopped in a little village {can't remember the name}. Anyway, there was a festival going on with vendors selling homemade jams and jellies, wine, apple cider, etc.

It's amazing how 10 days can come and go so quickly {actually 11}. We missed our flight home, causing us to spend another night in Paris {long story}. Anyway, 24-hours later and $4,000 in change fees we were on a plane back to Utah. This was such an awesome experience and I'm so grateful to have had the opportunity.