Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving, a family feast

A recent sports poll asked which of the following F's is the most important at Thanksgiving:


Though not a serious poll, a slight majority chose football, followed by food, and last was family. For us all of the above were a part of our Thanksgivingfestivities, but the most enjoyable was time with our families.

It all started with a trip to Melissa's families to kick off the feast as we gathered with family from Wyoming, Cedar City and Salt Lake. Food was aplenty and Parker found no shortage of attention with aunts and uncles to wrestle and play with. Ataste of Black Friday and its madness also found a place at the feast. Finally it was a birthday bash for Dustinto finish the fine Thanksgiving with Melissa's family.

Saturday was a taste of leftovers as we ventured south to be with the Esplin crew assembled for a mission call for Grandma and Grandpa, football games, and times spent together. Parker enjoyed the time with cousins and his new favorite toy, courtesy of Uncle Nate, the IPad, and of course tackling anybody that sat upright. Melissa enjoyed the leftovers the most as the Utes defeated the Cougs. As for myself, I drowned my sorrows in two pieces of apple pie.
We are thankful for family to spend time with. The food and football of the festivities are merely ways to join with family and experience wonderful memories together.

Friday, November 26, 2010

A new old tune

For five boys and ten years, my parents sang the same tune, as one by one, each of their sons answered the "call to serve".

A few years later, with returned missionaries married and having families, the same tune is being sung, this time they will be singing it as they have answered the call to serve in Utica, New York.

As was true of the previous mission calls to Brazil, Italy, Argentina, Germany, and Taiwan, family gathered, all 24 of us (sons, in-laws, grandchildren and two more in the oven) to guess and eagerly wait to hear the call from a prophet. The call came just two days after Thanksgiving, the perfect leftovers for Thanksgiving.
The mission call is a call for my dad to return to old stomping grounds as this was part of where he served his first mission. For my mom it is her pioneer experience for her to experience the joys of missionary service in the field.

There is not much time to tune up for this call to serve as they will be entering the MTC on January 3rd, a day before Melissa is due to deliver the baby.

And so in a few months we will experience the emotions that they felt for 10 years of absence, joy, anxiousness, and many others. But with these emotions we also sing the familiar phrases of, "Onward, ever onward, as we glory in His name". For we are grateful that they are singing this tune with faith and sacrifice as this is the same tune that we desire to have our children sing as they follow in the footsteps of these faithful missionaries who as of now have been "Called to Serve".


Holy War #3 for Parker. In pursuit of this loyal fan, each side (family lines) seems to be tugging for loyalty in favor of blue (Esplin) or red (Pollastro). On the field it stands:

Utes 1 (2008) Cougs 1 (2009)

As for Parker? Where does he stand in this Holy War?



This may take a few years to sort out. In fact, maybe there is something to be learned here?

Hmmmm . . .

Hmmm . . . (still thinking)

On second thought, no there isn't. But for now, Parker is torn! For Now!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Pictures that speak louder than words

Everybody needs a companion

We spent Halloween in Price with family. Following Church we drove over to Price to eat and visit. When dinner was ready, so was Parker, but Grandpa was doing his home teaching across the street. Anxious to eat, we sent Parker to knock on the door. It was a great door approach and a success! With hands in pockets they came back home for dinner. Onlookers (myself, Melissa, and Grandma) couldn't help but foresee this tandem doing some serious home teaching as companions! Not a bad combination if you ask me! At least they look the part!

And the Winner Is

With just under two months left until the juggling begins we are making final preparations for the arrival of "baby". Still without a name we turned to the "mouth of babes" who's selection of a baby name went something like this (keep in mind that whatever name we throw out him elicits a yes answer - depending on the mood and which version of Toy Story we are watching at the time)

Dad: "Buzz or Woody?"

Mouth of Babes: "Buzz!"

Dad: "Buzz or Slinky dog?"

Parker: No hesitation "Buzz"

Dad: Seeing a trend, "Buzz or Soilder people"

Parker: "Buzz"

Dad: "Buzz or Jessie"? (surely he won't go for a girl)

Parker: With a grin that could only be lassoed by Sheriff Woody, "Jessie!"

Dad: Disappointed but not done, "Jessie or Ham"?

Parker: "Ham!"

Dad: The ultimate test, "Ham or Buzz"?

Parker: "Ham!"

So there you have it. In the mouth of babes. Ham Esplin it is!

I Looked Out the Window

I looked out the window and what did I see?

Well, a few days ago . . .

And then a few days later . . .

Gotta love living in Castle Dale

Monday, November 8, 2010

To the Movies

A few weeks ago we were in Wyoming celebrating Caleb's and Carter's birthdays. As part of the birthday bash we were invited to the movie, "Megamind". Parker loved it and can't wait to be a super villain and have a big blue head!