winter in arizona

 Sunday, January 26, 2014

We LOVE Arizona winters. We wish we had time to take advantage of the weather and do more outside activities. But here's what we have been up to lately:
James started a family medicine rotation with a doctor in our ward! The rotation was set up by chance when James asked for a closer rotation because he was sick of driving 45 minutes away to Mesa every single day and night. Now he only drives 7 miles away and works 8:30-4:30. It's been soooo nice. He has made dinner every night for the past two weeks, been to the grocery store several times, and spent lots of time with me. What is this? Only the best rotation to spend time together we've had yet!...too bad James isn't interested in making family medicine his career. 
 He sends me these pictures throughout the day to cheer me up while I am working my brains out either at work or doing homework for my online classes. Yes, I am currently working on achieving my bachelor's in marriage & family studies through BYU-Idaho online. Working 30 hours and taking 12 credits equal to me having zero time to even remember to feed myself. Hence James making dinner every night. Thanks babe! Hopefully I can get used to my new schedule so that I can be the supportive wife for him when he starts his harder rotation in 2 weeks...cardiology in downtown Phoenix.
Last Friday we were finally able to get together with our close friends after everyone being gone for the holidays. 
Here's everyone accept the Battys. Their girl Claire got a fever at the last second and they weren't able to make it, but Whitney did drop by her delicious Cafe Rio style chicken! Thanks Whit! We missed yall!
Me, James, Taylee (bottom), Nicole, Chad, Than, Rex (top), Ixchel, Eliza (top), Jenna, and baby Isaac
Yesterday we were able to attend the Gilbert Temple Open House. It is one of the most gorgeous temples I have ever seen. We went with our best friends Than & Ixchel and had a blast. Rex is so grown up now! He's not even 2 yet and he knows my name, says it multiple times, and started saying James' name too. After the temple we made Korean food from scratch and it was so good. 
We love them.
 Here's what we saw when we walked out of the temple. Perfect temple, perfect weather, perfect sky. 
This is why we love Arizona winters.


Steven's Mission Homecoming

On January 10th James' younger brother Steven returned home from his mission and we were able to go up to Utah for it! Steven served in the Alpine Mission, which encompassed Switzerland, Austria, Liechtenstein, and parts of Germany and Italy. It was so wonderful to greet him at the airport! 

Marissa and James so anxious to see their brother!
After waiting for what seemed like forever, there he is! He's 4th from the bottom.
Hugging Mom.
Hugging Dad.
Hugging James.
Before he came down the escalator we made a quick "sign" from an old receipt Mike had.
 It's hard to see but it says "Elder Chapman."
 Laughing at the "sign" we made for him.
 Talking to Preston, Mike, & Holly.
 Brothers Spencer, Steven, and Preston and youngest sister Marissa.
 All the kids minus Danielle who is on her mission. Preston, James & Chels, future sister-in-law Natalie & Jason, Mike & Holly, Marissa, Spencer, and Steven.
 Lookin' sharp Elder Chapman!
Saturday we went bowling!  
 It was so fun to spend time with Steven, Marissa, Jason & his fiancee Natalie!
Steven's first bowl of the evening! 
Go James Go! Look at that form...
Love my man.
 These brothers are so cute.
 Sunday we enjoyed Steven's homecoming talk at church. It was so wonderful to hear about his mission and to hear his testimony.
Here is the scrumptious cake that Aunt Emily made!
 Marissa's science project was too pretty to not take a picture of. These roses started out white...
Love hangin' in the kitchen with Mom. 
The newly-engaged Jason & Natalie. 
We played card games. Oh and my brother Peter came! 
He's glowing. 
 So is he.
Aunt Emily and her precious Brooklyn.  
 I just had to hold her.
Family photo. We miss you Danielle! 
Natalie, Jason, Dad, Preston, Mom, Marissa, Steven, Spencer, James, Me, Peter, Holly, Mike.
Couldn't decide which photo was better. 
 Had to take a photo of the boys playing hoops with their dad.
We always love spending time with our families!
P.S. look how cold it looks in Utah...I love Arizona winters.


Happy New Year from Texas!

 Thursday, January 9, 2014

James and I absolutely loved going to Texas to visit my family for a late Christmas and New Year's Eve Soiree! 
Sorry Gramps that your face is partially hidden! We love you! 
Here are the kiddos. Friends for life.
 James is super excited for Gramps' super fudge.
 Nana throws a soiree every year. It includes cheeseball & crackers, potato chips with sour cream & onion dip, nana's swedish cookies, gramps' chocolate chip cookies, fudge, cashews, shrimp, nana's mushrooms, and rolls with roast beef, turkey breast, and provolone cheese! Let the soiree begin!
 Piper was excited for her first New Year's Eve dance! I was able to curl her hair into an elegant side up-do. She looked gorgeous as always. 
 Love your dress Pi!
 My beautiful sister the model.
 We proceeded to open our Christmas gifts from the family. I'm laughing at something here, probably something Nana said because she and I are always laughing together. 
 Mom recorded some family history questions we asked Nana and Grandpa.
 Love our times spent at Nans & Gramps' house.
Pete looking comfy & handsome. 
Nana looking elegant. 
 Nana's cherry cheesecake.
Nana slicing the dessert. 
We of course toasted in the New Year together with Martinelli's sparkling cider.  
Happy New Year 2014! On New Years Day we went to go see Saving Mr. Banks. This is probably the most touching story about P.L. Travers, the author of Mary Poppins. Emma Thompson is wonderful in it and so is Tom Hanks as Walt Disney. I LOVED this movie even though it made me so sad. My whole family really enjoyed it as well. It makes me appreciate Mary Poppins more. I have always loved that movie, especially since Nans & Gramps introduced it to me, but now I have a deeper appreciation for it. GO SEE THIS MOVIE!
After we wiped the tears away from the movie, we went out for our New Year's tradition: CHINESE FOOD. If any of you know me, you know that I don't enjoy Chinese food as much as most people, but James has been warming me up to it the past few years. I actually enjoyed this Chinese buffet. It is over by the Olive Garden across from the Stonebriar Mall. It's called Great Wall Super Buffet. I'd recommend it!
The boys on January 1, 2014
The girls on January 1, 2014
The Chapmans on January 1, 2014 
Paxton on January 1, 2014. What a sweetheart. We love this pup.
 Girls Day Out! On Thursday I took Piper out on a sisters date! We ate breakfast at the cutest, tastiest place called Fifth Street Patio Cafe in downtown Frisco. We LOVED it. Every menu item that was brought out looked absolutely delicious. 
Pi and I both ordered the Mr. Thomas breakfast because it was the healthiest option (gotta be healthy at the start of 2014)! It really was very tasty though! Scrambled egg whites, whole wheat toast, turkey sausage, avocado, tomato, and lettuce! 
Pi looking so cute with her breakfast! 
 Love her so much.
 Then we saw FROZEN!! This was Piper's first time seeing it and my second. Piper LOVED it and I LOVED it again! If you haven't seen it yet, GO NOW! The best song in the world that we haven't stopped singing is Elsa's song, Let it Go, sung by Idina Menzel. You can watch/listen to it here. It's so inspiring! And now I am obsessed with the concept of snowflakes and ice. 
And then that night after singing our lungs out we wanted to sing more by watching Enchanted. We love that movie. Especially all of Pip the chipmunk's cute funnyness. ♫ I've been dreaming of a true love's kiss! ♫ Also it makes me love James Marsden and Patrick Dempsey even more.
Every minute with the family is wonderful. We miss them already!
This is a picture of the salsa that I got James for Christmas from The Martinez family in McKinney. It is SO.GOOD. Buy some now.
Look forward to the next post when we get back from Utah!
Happy New Year!


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