Monday, April 13, 2009

James' Near-Death Experiences

Mom: James took a silly test entitled How will you die? on his Facebook internet account. The result of the quiz foresaw him expiring in a glorious death of drowning. I had to comment on it.

"This is interesting considering the fact that you HAVE almost died.........a few times, and none of them had anything to do with drowning. I remember a life flight followed by intensive care following a nose dive out of a tree house. I remember the shaky voice of a road worker as she informed me that you were almost steam-rollered. I remember screaming at the top of my lungs, stopping traffic on the main street at Waikiki Beach and you toddling unconcernedly on.... to the screeching of tires and the smell of rubber. I remember Dad telling me of catching you by the clothes as you tried to bungee jump (without a rope) about 30 feet onto some concrete. And lastly, I remember lightning striking right next to you and you darting in front of traffic in the rain trying to get to Dad who watched helplessly from the other side of the road. This doesn't include injuries, like dismembered toes.'ve had an interesting life, and you are only in your early twenties!"

The bungee jumping incident happened in Alabama. Dad took you kids to the airport to go get Grandma or Papa, I can't remember which. I had to stay at home because I was having complications with my pregnancy with Rebecca. There was a balcony of some sort that was open air. Somebody that wasn't thinking, put a bench up against the wall. James climbed on top of that and Dad caught him by his clothes on his way over the edge.

The steam roller happened in Washington, UT. He was walking to Aunt Melanni's and they were doing road construction in front of the house. After he walked out the door, I remembered about the construction. I ran out and it had just happened. The flag lady was still shaking and I watched James' little retreating back bouncing along towards Aunt Melanni's, unaware that he almost died. She was pretty shaken up along with the driver.

Does anyone else remember these incidents?

Ariana, 13 April 2009: Man, James is one lucky (or unlucky?) guy! I remember James jumping out of the tree house. The only part I remember is running to the door of Grandma Whitaker's house to see James after we found out he got hurt. I don't remember seeing him or anything else about that day or the time he was in the hospital. Becca and I were talking about James just yesterday (Easter Sunday):"In the happiness of Easter, we don't go to church!"

Melanni, 13 April 2009: Wow, James must have a whole fleet of guardian angels. I remember hearing most of these stories, but the one I actually witnessed was him jumping out the treehouse. I remember thinking, should I go get Mom? Now I think, how could I even have wondered about that?! Kids' minds work so differently than adults'...or maybe it was just mine(0:

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Spring Break @ Europa Park, Rust, Germany

Dad had to go to Stuttgart because they are repaving the runway here in Wiesbaden and he was nice enough to drive clear back for his promotion. He really wanted to just go into the commander's office and have it done, nice and quiet. I thought it would be nice for the kids to see this because it is a big deal. Dad's worked hard and sacrificed a lot. I am glad he went to the effort of making it a special time for the kids.

Dad didn't even come home afterwards. He drove straight back to Stuttgart. He was gone for almost two weeks. During this time he had some great missions. He got to go to Billinius, Lithuania; Kiev,Ukraine; Tblisi, Georgia; and Bucharest, Romania and he flew Congressman Tanner around.

The second week he was gone was the beginning of spring break for us and the kids wanted to do something. The first thing we did was offer to take the Both's kids from Friday to Monday night. That was really fun and it gave the parents a chance to go on a fun vacation. They went to Venice, Pisa and Tuscany. They had a wonderful time and we joked with them that they probably caused the earthquake that happened there on Monday.

For our part, we had a great time with the Both kids. They are really good children. We had fun with Ally's hair, either straightening it or playing with her curls. She put up with it but I don't think it was her favorite part of her stay. We also took the kids to the river to feed the swans and ducks. There is a great playground here in Ruedesheim near the river and we went there too.

Bobby Both has gotten really good on the piano. He taught Whitney the first part of Alla Turca and she is getting good at it.

After they left Monday night, we started planning our vacation.

Dad: My favorite part of the trip was watching the kids interact with the Barnhart family.
I also knew something was different about my two girls but couldn't put my finger on it until they told me that they had haircuts. One of the crazy things at the park was a witch on stilts. She was picking on the people and sticking her tongue out. She had a rubber chicken on a string that she would throw at unsuspecting passersby and then it would bounce back in her hand. She liked yelling and sticking her tongues out at people.

Jesse: On Wednesday I had to work but I was ready to go to Europa Park because I packed the day before. As soon as I was done, the family picked me up from work and we left right after work. We brought food with us because the hotel had a kitchen. There was a really nice man and he told us we could use the big kitchen and dining room downstairs as well. I liked the Silver Star roller coaster. I didn't have a favorite ride because I liked everything. I think James would hate the Blue Fire because it had a loop-de-loop. The funny thing about that ride is that it checks your pulse while you are riding. One ride I liked was the laser light time travel ride. I also liked the ice skating show with the clown. We also watched a 4-D movie that was really 3-D with some mist that sprayed us and the seats moved when the movie characters fell and a SNAKE was on the screen and we felt something on our legs. Everyone screamed. The most amazing thing that happened during spring break though was that it was getting really hot. Dad decided to cut Buster's hair. He looks FUNNY!

Richard: I liked seeing how much fun everyone was having. It was fun to be with the Barnharts and it was great when Dad showed up Friday for our last day there. My favorite ride was the Blue Fire. I was riding with Ben Barnhart and he had a blast. I also was allergic to something in the hotel room and spent the first night on the balcony because I was sneezing my brains out.

Whitney: I liked standing in line for the Blue Fire ;) A WHOLE HOUR AND A HALF! It was worth it because the Blue Fire was the best ride. Another part that was "interesting" was all of the people making out in line.........YUCK! I had my bangs cut at the hotel and it took Dad a long time to notice when he came. Dad also brought us some presents from his trip.

Lyndsay: We had to clean the house from top to bottom. It was very tiring. I felt as if I'd drop dead from my aching arms. One arm STILL aches. I was also getting really hot so I cut my long hair up over my shoulders. Something I liked was playing WHAT IF at the hotel. I also liked the beautiful gardens that surrounded the hotel.

Collin: I love Buster's soft and short fur now. It's so cute. My favorite rides in Europa Park was the Silver Star, the Blue Fire and the Poseidon. I guess you can say that I like roller coasters

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Ariana Remembers:

Ariana, Jesse, Melanni and Christian James
with Dad in Alabama
Ariana: This picture brings back a lot of good memories for me. We all loved it when Dad came home from work and couldn't wait to pile on Dad! The different items in the room bring back some fun memories. I remember watching Mom sew those pink curtains. I liked watching her use the sewing machine.

I have lots of memories of that leather chair. That was Dad's special chair and we couldn't sit on it when he was home because that was his spot. Sometimes we'd be sitting on it when he came home from work, and we'd have to jump out of it as fast as we could. Then, he would sit down in the chair, and we would help unlace his army boots and pull them off. We'd also help take off his scratchy green socks and those green elastic bands with hooks on them that held up his socks. (At least, I think that's what they were for. I have no idea what those are called.) One of us would go to the kitchen and Mom would help us fill a tall glass with ice and water so we could carefully carry it back to Dad. That was really fun!

I also remember sitting on Dad's lap in the special chair and showing him my loose tooth. It was really, really loose, but I was afraid to pull it out. Dad wanted to wiggle it, but I was afraid to let him. He promised he wouldn't pull it out. Of course, he did. I remember the tooth flew across the room. I was glad he pulled it out because then the Tooth Fairy could come. Dad taught us to put our tooth on the kitchen counter, in a cup filled with water and sprinkled with salt for the Tooth Fairy, instead of under our pillows. There were a few times when the Tooth Fairy didn't come the first night that I put my tooth out for her. Dad explained that I probably hadn't added enough salt to the cup. So, I'd make sure to season it really well, and then the money would show up the next morning.

I think Grandma Larson crocheted the blanket on the back of the chair for Jesse when he was born.

Do you guys remember that chair? What's that thing next to the globe on the table?

Melanni, 1 April 2009: I liked your memory, Ariana. I remember taking off Dad's boots, too. I don't remember Mom sewing those curtains in particular but I do remember her using her sewing machine a lot when we were little. I remember the tall glass of water and ice, too. I don't look too happy in this picture-it's probably because I wanted Dad all to myself! It's funny, Kasen makes the same pouting face that I'm making in that picture sometimes.

CW4? No more! Introducing CW5 Christian A. Larson

………and of course the family!
Richard, Whitney, Collin, Mom, Lyndsay, Christian and Jesse
Ariana, 1 April 2009: I'm so glad you posted these pictures and the video! I loved being able to see Dad awarded with his new rank. Congratulations, Dad! We're so proud of you! We love you!
Melanni and Murray, 1 April 2009: This is a great picture of the family, it makes me homesick! Murray just looked at this picture and said "your family looks so small now!" Congratulations, Dad! We love you, too!
Rebecca, 2 April 2009: This is a video of my dad's promotion to CW5! We are all very proud of him for his achievement! I have always admired his dedication and hard work. I look up to him in so many ways. This promotion is just another reason for me to be just like my daddy. For years I wanted to be a pilot because that was my dad's line of work and I wanted to be just like him. Now I know that there are other ways that I can be like him. He is reliable, dedicated, intelligent, loving and a leader. One day I hope to have each of these qualitites. I love my dad for being the best example ♥

Christian’s CW5 promotion at the WAAF

(Wiesbaden Army Airfield) 9 A.M. April 1, 2009

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

This is Dad flying the jet in …….. Somebody took his picture flying with Mr. Clapp and posted it on the internet. It is a great picture. He is the one on the left with just the top of his head visible.

Our Wedding

We were married February 6, 1982 in Diamond Valley, Nevada about twelve miles northwest of Eureka, Nevada. Rex Roberts performed the ceremony. He was our branch president. We were married in the afternoon in a house on Blue Diamond Farm. It was named after my brother, Gordon.

Christian’s whole family came from Washington with the exception of his brother, Erin, who was serving a mission in Argentina. Antone Purcell (a good friend and self-proclaimed foster brother) also came.

From my family, we had all of my brothers and sisters, Grandma and Granddad Quigley, Grandma Whitaker, Lewis and Julie Quigley, and little baby Jared who had been born just under a month before. (Kevin was already in Germany finding housing for his new little family.) Lisa Johnson came out from Fallon with her mother and sister, Lorelei and Shannon. She was my maid of honor.

Mom had hurried and gotten everything ready. She made my wedding dress and it was beautiful. Each of the bridesmaids wore a white shirt and Mom made matching blue wrap-around skirts for them. She also put nice fabric up on the windows so it would go with everything. She did the flowers and the cake. I wanted cream puffs so she did those too. She was amazing.

It was bitter cold outside, about 30 degrees below zero. It was so cold that the Larson’s had to start a fire under the car, just to get the oil thawed out so they could start it. They got clear over to the house and realized that they had forgotten the ring and had to go back to get it. (just a couple of miles.) Christian picked out beautiful rings. I really wanted white gold because I liked it better. He couldn’t find anything he liked well enough in white gold and settled for matching bands of yellow gold but on top was a layer of brushed white gold and four little diamonds. They were absolutely beautiful and I couldn’t have done a better job myself. I loved those rings. I still really love the look of the two colors of white and yellow gold together.

It was a very nice ceremony. One funny thing that happened was that during the opening prayer, Jared filled his pants. It was long and loud. It was so funny that it was hard for me to keep from giggling. Then we had the wedding starting with President Roberts talking to us for a few minutes followed by the ceremony. Granddad Quigley sang “Oh Promise Me.” He used to be in the Tabernacle Choir and had a beautiful voice. Later on, when I saw the movie Anne of Green Gables I thought it was funny that they made fun of our wedding song.

Afterwards we had a nice reception with friends and family there. We had a lot of people that came out and supported us. Mom and Dad had a lot of good friends so we had a good turnout. Grandma Quigley took over the organizing of the pictures. She was in her element. Everyone dubbed her “General Quigley” but I think she loved that. It was a good thing she did this though because we now have some tangible memories of that special day.

Both families loved music and so a group of the men, mostly family, sang around the piano and it was a nice time.

The Quigleys rented a hotel in town for us. Valerie and Corey snuck out to the hotel and decorated our car. Christian noticed it when he got up in the middle of the night to start the car. It was so cold that we had to let the engine run for a while so the oil wouldn’t freeze again. The next morning, we thought we had taken off most of the cans that they had tied on but as we pulled out, we found out they had put some quite far under the car. We rattled our way the twelve miles back out to the farm. It was fun.

The next day, we were off . The first day we went as far as Klamath Falls, Oregon and spent the night with Christian’s Uncle Dougie MacGregor and Aunt Marion. We rode in the car with the Larsons while Christian’s siblings rode in the other car. The next day we switched cars and headed up on our own up the Oregon Coast. It was fun and I was especially glad to see the ocean. It was fun to realize that we were married and could be together. I loved Christian so much. It seemed like it was too good to be true. I was lucky to marry into such a great, supportive family.

That night, we stayed in a little hotel and ordered a pizza. I remember that we didn’t eat the whole thing and threw away the last piece. The next morning while Christian was in the shower, I was feeling sick and was getting very nauseas. I knew if I didn’t eat soon it was going to be bad. I remember fishing that extra piece of pizza out of the trash bag and having a few bites to settle my stomach.

That day we made it to Chehalis where we stayed in the Larson’s garage that had been converted into a bedroom. This was such a nice thing for them to do for us because Nathan and Mike Harris had no bedroom once I moved in. They had to sleep in the living room on the floor in that little 900 square foot house. I’ll bet they hated me! We stayed there until April when my parents came up to get us and take us back to Nevada so Christian could work for Dad.

Dad and Mom gave us a car as a wedding present. It was a their Chrysler Newport.

Ariana, 31 March 2009: Wow, Mom! This blog looks great! I loved reading the story of your wedding. I can't wait for everyone to start adding their memories!

Melanni, 1 April 2009: Hi Mom-I loved this memory. I always wondered about the details of your wedding day! This memory blog is a great idea and, like Ariana said, I can't wait to read everyone's memories once we all start posting!