Grandpa Phil, Dillon and Luke!

John Riggs, Dad, and David.

The Birthday Boys.

Our lovely host and sister, Alisa and her sweet little Elijah.

After a long week of working we went to Eugene for a fun celebration of family birthdays. We celebrated Rick (my brother-in-law) and my Dad's birthdays with a wonderful meal and great company at my sister's house.

Lots of laughs were to be had, great presents to be given, and yummy food to be eaten.

We had a great weekend and now we are getting ready for a full week of school for David and work for me at Jcrew with a few subbing jobs during the days.

Happy Birthday Dad and Rick--we love you both very much!



In Salem on Thursday night we celebrated V-Day with a new recipe--Chicken Piccata and pasta--it was a wonderful chance for David and I to sit and eat in fellowship together.

In Redding David and Tyler relaxing after the fantastic meal that Tyler prepared for us.

David, his Great-Uncle Walt, and his Grandma Fox.

Nola and I reading one of her bedtime stories. It was so wonderful to get to know the fantastic children Matt and Melissa are raising!

David driving through the beautiful scenery of Southern Oregon (look through the window at the snow covered mountains).

On Friday we picked up a rental car (that I got on Hotwire for an amazing $14.00 per day) and we drove to Redding, California. We stayed the night with our dear friends Tyler and Melissa. We had a wonderful visit and a very yummy meal with them and off to sleep we went.

On Saturday morning we drove to Sacramento to see David's Grandmother. We were so glad to see her home and and the three of us had a nice visit before we took her with us and went to visit with David's Great-Uncle Walt and his wife, Joan.

In the evening we went and met up with my family who lives in Sacramento. We went to dinner and stayed the night with my Aunt Carole and Uncle Jan as well as my cousins Matt and Melissa and their beautiful children Nola and Wren.

Sunday morning after a quick little breakfast together with the Kurahara's and the Nishio's--David and I hopped on the road and had a long drive back filled with singing old school 90's hits, admiring the snowy mountains, and solving the world's problems.

What a wonderful road trip we had and we felt so lucky to have time to see people we don't usually get to spend time with!



Kris (David’s Mom) heads an amazing event each year in Eugene and for the second year in a row we headed down to pour fantastic beer for the KLCC 2009 Microbrew Festival.

We were very blessed to enjoy this event with not only David’s family, but also my brother Darin and his wife. We were also joined by my cousin Brian, our friends Teresa and Aaron Price, and our friend Jeff Koenig and his dad—what a wonderful night of friends and family!

With the little Jaspers boys off for a slumber party at Grandma and Grandpa’s house—David and I and the Price family joined Brian for a sleep over at Darin and Laura’s house.

We had a wonderful breakfast with everyone at Darin and Laura’s and we headed to the Fox household for a quick visit. Then, after Kris graciously helping us with our taxes, we began our short drive home and allowed Walt and Kris to enjoy their Sunday afternoon in peace.



In Salem there is a beautiful winery called Willamette Valley Vineyards. This lovely vineyard has events and hosts restaurants for various weekends. While we were in Germany and I was thinking of a Christmas gift for David, I came across the Mo's clam chowder and wine event happening in January at Willamette Valley vinyards--so I got tickets for David because--Mo's chowder is his favorite food ever.

So, a few weekends back we drove to the vineyard and spent a really fun afternoon tasting wine, eating chowder, listening to the fun oldies band and chatting with the people at our table. What a wonderful way to warm up on a cold and foggy Sunday afternoon in Oregon.


What a wonderful weekend we have just returned from...the Marist High School Senior Metanoia. Marist has retreats for all of their students and each year the older students lead these fun weekends, but for seniors the leaders are alumni who return to offer a bit of insight and encouragement for the senior's next chapter in their lives.

This was a lovely time away from the hustle and bustle of our daily lives. The retreat was on the McKenzie River at St. Benedicts Lodge and we spent time listening to the quiet rustle of the wind in the trees, the crunch of the snow beneath people's feet, and the crackling of the large fireplace in the Lodge.

The theme of the weekend was, "A Change of Heart" and it was just what David and I needed at this point in our lives. We are both feeling the stress and pressure of the "unknowns" in our lives at this time. We were able to enjoy time with Walt (David's Dad) and Darin (my brother) and it was so rejuvenating to hear their encouraging words and have poignant conversations with these men who mean so much to us and have wise words.

We are back in Salem and starting our week off with a changed heart and an openness to listen to God's plan for our lives.

David, Me, and Darin standing on the deck along the river--this is at the end of a restful and wonderful weekend!

Bright Lights, Big City...Life in Las Vegas