The anticipation for Christmas this year was much different than others that we have spent together. After all, it was Rosalie’s first Christmas, and the simplest of things, like the lights and ornaments on the tree, were magical to her. Those little details allowed us to slow down and savor the special moments and memories we were making. It didn’t hurt that being able to hold our precious baby made the celebration of Christ’s birth all that more pertinent.
According to our rotation, it was the year to spend Christmas with the Frederiksen family. After a frigid, -15 degree, early morning walk to the bus in order to make it to the airport (you can see how much Rosalie enjoyed that walk in the photo below), we were of to Boise! Among many other things during our visit, Kyle and I ran the YMCA Christmas run (Kyle took first in his age group, I just enjoyed running), we visited Santa, and enjoyed a Christmas scavenger hut.
Rosalie also spent lots of time with her cousins, which unfortunately led to her getting the stomach flu. It was so sad to see her little body struggling with being sick, so I slept on the ground next to her during that time. Close proximity and being thrown up on led to me also getting the bug, and then it was passed on to Kyle. An unfortunate way to spend our vacation, but we were grateful that her first big sickness came when we were with family so that we could have experienced hands to help.
Christmas day was peaceful and simple, revolving mostly around the true meaning of Christmas. We were lucky to share opening presents with Kyle’s parents, brother, and Grandpa Frederiksen. The celebration was continued later that day with Kyle’s other siblings, Andi and Nate, and their families. We are seriously blessed to be related to so many wonderful people.
Like usual, after Christmas, we went to visit the other family. This year, we were also lucky enough to attend the Barfuss Christmas party, with the majority of the extended family on my mom’s side. This happened to be an overnight stay at a big lodge in the Mountains hear Huntsville. There was a big hill next to the lodge which we spent ample amounts of time on, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, and creating a long tubing run.
Somehow we lucked out and received free passes to Park City Mountain Resort, from Kyle’s work. My dad was willing to spend time with his favorite granddaughter while Kyle and I hit the slopes. It started out as a day with negative temperatures and fog, that bit at your skin as you descended the mountain. However, just an hour after we had started skiing, the sun came out to warm the mountain. It ended up being an ideal day on the slopes.
This trip wasn’t all fun and games, though. It was also a time for me to visit my Grandpa Todd, as he was nearing the end of his time on Earth. It was also extremely important that I get out to see him, and my Grandma, because they hadn’t had the chance to meet Rosalie. It was a three hour drive to get out, and another three hours back, but I would have driven twice that long in order to experience that last visit with my Grandpa. I will never forget seeing Rosalie look into their eyes and give them sweet smiles. It brought joy to all in the room seeing my once silent and still Grandpa interacting with Rosalie, touching her hands, and trying to talk with her. Weeks after these pictures were taken, my Grandpa passed away. Death is never a welcome message, but it was a comfort to know that I had those special moments with that great man while he was still with us.