Can you tell we took advantage of living in the Western US near family? Grants New Mexico Quadrathalon, Grand Canyon, California twice, Cruise, Petrified Forest, Camping with Pattersons outside of Heber, Grandma Maleta's funeral, Lake Powell, Ireland Choir tour, Flew around the world, Juli's Marathon, Moved to Brisbane, Incredible beaches, Great Barrier Reef, Kangaroos, Koalas, etc.
I thought I would give you a snapshot of our most recent 10 days. I'll do it in top ten format so you get an idea of the best moments:
10. Having our friends (the Kofoeds) from Malaysia stay with us for 10 days (family of 7). Note from Juli: Curtis and Shon were roommates in college, both engineers, and both worked for ExxonMobil. Michelle is also from Idaho, which makes her a very nice person. We lived a mile from them in Texas. Needless to say, we had a great time together.
9. Seeing 100s of thousands of bats (big bats) fly at dusk in Bundaberg. We saw the bats at Carlsbad Caverns but this one put that to shame. They filled the entire sky from horizon to horizon and were LARGE. It was really cool and we just chanced on it. We were ordering pizza at Pizza Hut and just standing there watching in a strip mall. The sky literally became dark.
8. Getting the rental furniture moved out of our house (yes that means we have more than 8 plates now)
7. Getting our shipment (sans lawn mower, trimmer, and some pots that needed to be cleaned) Juli says: Yeah!
6. Going to the Great Barrier Reef. Yes, we found Nemo.
5. Seeing Caleb as a competent swimmer. He now swims across the pool at will, takes breaths in the middle and will just float there face down relaxing and then put his head up when he needs a breath.
4. Snorkeling with Juli and the kids at the reef. Lots of fish. We even saw turtles. Abby, Sarah, Emily, and Bryce were great and just went off on their own. Caleb even had a go. It was fun.
3. Walking on Lady Musgrave Island. There are 40000 birds. It was amazing to be on a coral island. The shells were stunning.
2. Hearing about the kids soccer camp. They are loving it and having a great time!
1. Riding the vomit comet. The ride from the shore to the GB Reef was 2 hrs through some ROUGH sees. Of the 14 in our group only 4 didn't loose it (all the boys in our family and Curtis). It was actually funny to watch (you could hear some people). I don't know why it was so funny to me I just thought it was and I have a big smile right now. Note from Juli: It was only funny the first hour. After that it was miserable - like two hours on a rollercoaster. The people running the boat said it would be rough (2.6m swells) and if anyone would like a refund they would re-schedule. If anyone ever says that again, I will take them up on it. At one point the waves were so big there were alarms going off on the boat. It was worth it though - the reef was beautiful. I have wanted to do that my whole life.
Juli reminded me today of my assignment. I am to make a slideshow of the year in review. I think it may be tough to beat our past year. I am setting a due date for this assignment as January 18th. I'll let the excitement build but my favorite memory for 2009 was when