Sunday, December 9, 2007

Community Holiday Drop-In Party

We invited our apartment community over on Friday night for a drop-in party. We thought it'd be fun to give the students a place to relax after a tough week of finals. We made cookies for people to decorate, bought ornaments for people to color, had hot cocoa, candy canes, played Christmas music, and even had the "yule-log" playing on our TV. Although the turnout was small, we had fun with the people who came!

Danielle was definitely in a creative mood. She frosted some cookies that looked fantastic! Her ornaments were also very impressive.

I had a great time being taking care of Kyriana, Kraig and Danielle's daughter, while they frosted cookies and colored ornaments. Too bad she kept grabbing fuzz off my sweater and eating it and sticking it in her eye. Sorry Kyriana! Next time I promise not to wear such a fuzzy sweater.

Kraig, Danielle, Jill, and Henry busy making Christmas ornaments.

We feel so blessed to have such a wonderful community. It's fun living with fun people!

Done with another quarter!

Noel's officially finished his 9th quarter at Fuller! He had an incredibly busy quarter (as always) with 3 classes plus an internship at church. He only has 2 more quarters of classes and 1 quarter of full-time interning at a hospital. The end is actually in sight...something I think we're both excited for and nervous for at the same time. I don't think either of us realized how rigorous this program was going to be and we've experienced many days/weeks/quarters where we weren't sure it was possible to get all the work done that needed to be done (maybe I was more nervous than Noel :) ). I'm so proud of how hard he works at his studies. What shall we do to celebrate the end of this quarter?

Monday, December 3, 2007

Jett Michael

We are first time aunt and uncle to adorable Jett Michael Haveman! My sister, Heather, gave birth to Jett on November 1st. We can't wait to meet him in just a couple weeks!


Is he going to be a boxer?



I'm not quite sure what to do with this hand...




Resting with my mommy.
Smiling already?

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Date night

Noel and I love trying new restaurants and new foods. We both love what we know of Mediterranean food and decided to try a new restaurant in Glendale. We were totally blown away with how wonderful it was. Our intention was to each order one entree, but when we saw that the menu offered a huge sampler that included a taste of MANY appetizers and entrees, we couldn't resist. If you're ever in the Glendale area and looking for a phenomenal restaurant, check out Carousel!



Thanksgiving

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving last week. Jon and Amanda were gracious enough to host and provide tons of food. Amanda's sister and boyfriend joined us as well as another couple Jon and Amanda know. The girls spent most of the day in the kitchen cooking while the boys played video games.

Jamie and Jason with their son, Parker, Jon and Amanda, Amir and Tara, and me (Noel's the photographer) sitting down to a delicious feast!

Amanda put together a very beautiful table!

Jon conquered the turkey!



We had lots of great dishes! Turkey, sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes and gravy, homemade biscuits, green bean casserole, dressing, cranberry salad, macaroni and cheese, creamed corn, and salad...as if that wasn't enough, we had pumpkin pie and baked apples for dessert!

We spent the rest of the weekend decorating for Christmas, catching up on odds and ends and spending time with our friends Kraig and Danielle and their daughter Kyriana. Kraig and Noel played video games on Sunday afternoon while Danielle and I baked delicious shortbread cookies. I'm so thankful that Danielle shared her childhood favorite recipe with me! We also ate white chicken chili and cornbread together. Overall, it was a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend filled with lots of great fellowship.

Stuffed potatoes

I love trying new recipes and have recently found a new, great, vegetarian cookbook. It's called "Horn of the Moon" and contains recipes from a vegetarian restaurant in Vermont. One of the recipes is for stuffed potatoes. Noel and I were very impressed with how they turned out. I love that the possibilities for fillings are endless! What's on your dinner menu tonight?


Friday, November 9, 2007

Jackpot!

As I was driving home from church last week, I noticed a sign outside Wild Oats announcing that it was closing the next day (due to being bought by Whole Foods). Noel and I decided to go one last time since it was one of our favorite places to shop. Little did we know, everything in the store was 50% off! Wild Oats has some of the best quality meat, so we bought a LOT of meat to throw in the freezer. We got over 2 lbs of wild salmon, ground beef, organic chicken breasts, a roast, shrimp, plus lots of other grocery items. Lots of the shelves were already empty, but we were able to find a few staples as well as a few fun things. What a fun way to grocery shop! Will any of you miss Wild Oats like we will? Luckily, we also enjoy Whole Foods and a 2 story store just opened near us a few days ago.
Noel's holding some of the meat. He wasn't able to hold it all...we went a little overboard, but it sure was fun!

Some of the other delightful items we purchased!

A new toy

Noel decided that he needed an outlet...something fun to do at home...something to look forward to. Soooooooooooooooooooo, we bought our neighbors N64 with 4 controllers and a bunch of games. Noel really only wants the system to play MarioKart, but we're still looking for that game. In the mean time, he's playing lots of 1080 Snowboard. I don't know anything about these games, but he's having a great time, which makes it worth it. I hope I don't regret this purchase someday...



Neglect

I've been negelcting the blog lately. I'm not sure why, but sometimes it just seems so overwhelming to sit down and post something. Maybe it's because I still don't really know what I'm doing or what direction I want to go with the blog. Maybe it's because I get so frustrated trying to post pictures and I can't figure out how to make them look as good as everyone else does. Any tips fellow bloggers? I'm open to advice, hints, directions, anything...

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Autumn Afternoon in the Country

Noel and I were fortunate enough to be invited to an "Autumn Afternoon in the Country". A couple from our church has a friend who owns this ranch near Mt Baldy. It's about a 40 minute drive from where we live, but feels like a completely different world! It feels like a forest and there was a great hiking trail we were able to take and do some exploring. We met a few new church people and enjoyed a great afternoon of hiking, appetizers, dinner, dessert (pumpkin cheesecake!!!!!) and conversation.

This cat was so sweet, until it started sticking its front claws through our jeans! Seated next to is is our Associate pastor's husband, Don. We really enjoyed getting to know him better.

This was towards the beginning of our hike. These are the only colored leaves we've seen all season! We'll take what we can get.

This is part of the ranch that the party was held at. It was so beautiful inside and out.

Noel resting at the top of the hike. Really, it wasn't strenuous at all. I just like this picture.

Harvest Festival

Every October, Fuller puts on a Harvest Festival. It's a great event for families with kids, but fun for adults too. There are tons of games, tons of candy, and even pony rides! Homemade Korean BBQ is always served (if you've never tried it, it's soooo delicious) along with lots of other carnival food (hotdogs, popcorn, nachos, cotton candy, etc.). Noel and I were required to work at the event as part of our community coordinator position. We opted for the hot cider booth, which I think was definitely the easiest (the cider didn't even come close to comparing to Michigan cider though...it was a bit disappointing). Noel also ended having to play the guitar for an hour on the "hayride" (2 horses pulling a wagon around a city block). We had a great time!

Noel enjoying his Korean BBQ while we waited for people to visit our booth.

Noel leading songs on the "hayride".

I met up with Cynthia, Shannon, and Michelle. We were all financial aid counselors together when I first started working at Fuller. Shannon is the only one who is still in the office, but now the Assistant Director rather than a counselor. Cynthia's working on becoming a nurse and Michelle just started a PhD program in clinical psychology here at Fuller. It was great to reconnect with them!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Noel, the pastor

Noel preached his first sermon last week Sunday at our church, San Marino Community Church. Eventually, a manuscript of his sermon will be posted on the website. If you're interested in reading what he talked about, you can just check the website periodically. This was the first oppotunity Noel's had to preach since being in seminary (he's only in his 5th week of his first preaching class). He did a GREAT job and I was so proud of him. The church responded really well and he got a lot of positive feedback from the congregation and the pastor. I'm starting to be able to picture myself as a "preacher's wife"...

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Heidi's Birthday!

I had a FANTASTIC birthday a couple days ago. Noel really did a good job at making it a special day. He got me a great shirt, pajamas, and a soup serving bowl with 8 personal bowls from Crate and Barrel. I've had my eye on that soup bowl since last fall, so I was VERY excited to receive it! I can't wait to cook some soup and serve it in these new bowls!

He also made me a great dinner. We had salmon, asparagus (which is one of my new favorite recipes!), bread, and salad. We baked a pumpkin roll cake together earlier in the day and it actually came out really well! I was quite nervous since rolling a cake is a new experience for me, but it's actually quite easy. If you haven't tried Libby's pumpkin roll, it's a must have! My recipe was given to me by a friend and is slightly different than Libby's, but it's almost identical. Give it a try! Our great friends, John and Amanda, joined us for cake and brought me some beautiful flowers. We're so thankful for our friends!

On Friday morning, Noel surprised me by taking me to a FANTASTIC restaurant in San Marino. Julienne's is a French restaurant that serves breakfast and lunch only, and everything is so delicious. The hostess was so sweet and brought a candle to put in my strawberry garnish.

Many thanks to Noel for making my day so special!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Country Day at the Grove

We met the most wonderful couple at our church quite a while ago. Bob and Carole Bos are both graduates of Hope College and Bob also attended Western Seminary. What a small world! They live in a Presbyterian retirement community and they've invited us to their home on several different occasions. This past Saturday, the community (Monte Vista Grove) had Country Day! There was live country music, chili dogs, polish sausage, corn on the cob, lots of games, and lots of second hand stores open (people donate all kinds of items which are sold to help benefit the health clinic on campus). Noel and I had a great time. We weren't able to get a picture with Carole since she was working at one of the booths, but were fortunate enough to have lunch with Bob. We both found a few things to buy at the second hand stores as well. Noel loved the bookstore and bought 2 hardcover books for $1 each!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Back in Session

The Fall quarter started this past Monday (Noel's 9th quarter out of 11 or 12...we're not sure yet). As always, it's a bit of a struggle adjusting back to the rigorous schedule and the academic demands Noel faces. Noel's taking Homiletics, Foundations for Youth Ministry, and Beginning Hebrew this quarter as well as serving as an intern at our church. Noel attended his first Hebrew class on Monday and started on his homework Tuesday afternoon. I was quietly working at my desk when he suddenly broke out into song, making noises that didn't even sound human to me. I asked, "What are you even saying?" He replied, "The Hebrew alphabet!" He sang the song so many times that I think I know the Hebrew alphabet now, too! Wednesday morning, he woke up early with me to continue working on his homework. Once again, he started making strange "noises". This time he was sounding out Hebrew words (mostly people in the Bible). Some of the words sound similar to English, so we kind of ended up playing MadGab (for those of you who are familiar with that game). Noel would sound it out, and I would say who I thought it was (unless he beat me to it). I tried to capture a bit of him sounding out words on video, but I'm not sure how well it turned out. Plus, it was much funnier before he knew I was taping. Hopefully you get the picture. I think we're in for an interesting quarter!




video

Living Stones Welcome Night

We are the community coordinators for our apartment building, Living Stones. Each community starts the new year with a Welcome Night, which usually consists of dinner and fellowship time. It's a great way to start the new school year, welcome new residents, and introduce them to residents who have been around longer. We love being the community coordinators and love all the people in our community. We decided to have a progressive dinner for our activity. Our friends, Dani and Michelle, hosted appetizers, we hosted the main dish, and Jill and Henry hosted dessert. It was a huge success! Everyone who came brought really yummy food and we all had a great time.







Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Disneyland!

We finally made it to Disneyland last Thursday! We've had tickets hanging on our bulletin board for 2 years, but have been unable to find the time (or energy) to go. I'm so glad we finally made the trek to Anaheim to spend a really fun day riding the rides and feeling like we didn't have a care in the world. We even went on the Teacups and managed to not get sick! Space Mountain was Heidi's favorite and Noel thoroughly enjoyed the Buzz Lightyear ride.




Saturday, September 22, 2007

Happy Birthday, Noel!

We celebrated Noel's 27th birthday yesterday. He requested a meal of flank steak, cheesy mashed potatoes, asparagus, and a carrot cake for dessert. I decided to add some baked crab rangoons to the menu for an appetizer. He thought we were just having a couple of friends over for dinner (John and Amanda), but he didn't know that I invited a few more friends over to surprise him and enjoy his birthday cake. People started showing up at 8:30 and Noel was so confused. It was really fun to watch his expression and see him surprised! Everyone that showed up for cake brought Noel and single bottle of beer to wish him a happy birthday. Don't worry, he didn't drink it all in one night...he didn't even drink any of it yet. We had a really fun night hanging out with many friends.




Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Griffith Park



Sometimes the city really gets to us. Saturday was one of those days. We both just kept saying, "We've got to get out of here!" We couldn't decide where to go, didn't know if it was worth fighting the traffic, but finally decided we had no choice. To Griffith Park we went! We tried going in a new entrance and discovered the cutest cafe where we sat and shared a soy latte and a piece of pear ginger cake topped with ice cream. It was quite a treat considering that we weren't out looking for food!

It truly is amazing what a difference it makes to get out into the wilderness (well, almost) and surround yourself with trees instead of buses, helicopters, screaming children, and LOUD motorcycles.

Hollywood!


We went to Hollywood last Friday (Heidi's first time seeing the theaters and stars). We figured that after living with it 15 minutes down the road for 2 years, we ought to get out and see it before we move (not that we have definite moving plans yet; that's in another year). Of course, once you get there you realize there is really nothing special about Hollywood as a city, but it's still fun to go and see what all the hype is about.