Monday, December 28, 2009

OBX or Bust!

The day after Christmas we jumped in the car and headed off the the Outer Banks. The goal was to see as many light houses, and cross as many bridges as we could in 2 days! The air was chilly, but we had a wonderful time seeing the sites and walking along the beach.

The first stop was Roanoke Island and the site of the Lost Colony.
Apparently English businessmen didn't actually know how to live off the land.
The walk around Roanoke was beautiful, even in late December. We make have to go back to compare summer foliage and experience all these sites when they are actually open.

Roanoke also has a wonderful boardwalk with shops and restaurants.

Our next stop was Kill Devil Hills and the Wright Brothers Memorial. This is the spot where Orville and Wilber launched the first 4 powered flights on Dec. 17th 1903.

Here is the landing spot of the 4th flight attempt. 852 ft. from take off.

The brother's picked the spot because of the soft sand and because it had no trees.

Paul making his first flight atop the memorial. Several people stopped to photograph him flying his kite.

Our hotel was right on the beach, so we were able to take a morning stroll. Olive was in heaven!

Bodie Lighthouse. Pronounced "Body", and may have gotten its name from the many bodies that washed ashore from shipwrecks.

Pauls attempt at taking a photo of us together. There weren't too many people around to be our photographer.

Crossing one of the many bridges that connect the OBX islands.

Lighthouse #2, Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. This is the tallest working lighthouse in America. It has been moved inland because the sandy island is slowly moving. The original foundation is now underwater.

We watched some dedicated surfers brave the winter sea. It gives me chills just thinking about it.

On the ferry ride to Okracoke Island. Blackbeard country. In fact, Paul is growing a black beard of his own in honor of the dreaded pirate!

Okracoke's lighthouse. Olive was being a very good dog.

A beautiful sunset ferry ride back to the mainland. A great conclusion to a great trip!!

Buon Natale!

It was an Italian Christmas at the Thayn house this year!

Steven and Marina Stanton, Paul and Bel Thayn, David holding Lily and Kara Thayn holding Jackson

The night started with an amazing Italian dinner, which included dishes such as bruschetta, caprese salad, and zucchini. To compliment our traditional dishes, Kara made a delicious turkey! Just as in Italy, at the end of dinner, each husband found a note of appreciation under his plate.

After dinner it was time for quilling! Quilling is the art of curling small strips of paper into different shapes and crafting them into beautiful works of art. We made ours into Christmas ornaments we could hang on our trees.

For dessert we enjoyed the traditional Italian dish of caramelized pears with a wedge of cheese. It was a simple dish, but turned out to be a hit!

As soon as we finished dessert, we all sat back and listened to the story of Old Befana, the Christmas witch. According to Italian legend, Befana was too busy sweeping to realize the Christ child had been born. When she finally decided to take him a gift, it was too late, and she continues to this day to fly on her broom searching for him. She leaves children gifts in hopes of finding the right one.

At the end of the story, our niece and nephew found a basket of goodies on the doorstep. Old Befana had flown over the house and left us gifts!

"More kok-O-late, Bel?"

After the story we tried an Italian hot cocoa which turned out so thick we couldn't drink it. However, the biscotti we dipped in it was heavenly! Thanks, Kara!

The night was coming to a close, and after we each opened one gift, it was time to say "buonanotte!" (good night) and wait for Santa to come.

Sugar plums would soon be dancing in this boy's head

Friday, November 20, 2009


We knew Olive was smart, now it is confirmed in writing. She has beautiful manners in class. If only she would apply them to real-world situations......

Giving Thanks

I find it interesting and heart warming to know that our holiday season kick-off is Thanksgiving. A holiday meant to turn our minds to the things we are most grateful for. Before we ever start to focus on the birth of Christ, gift giving, or starting a new year, we get a chance to reflect on our blessings. I am thankful for so many things. I don't think I can list them all, but here is my attempt at highlighting some of the things that enrich my life and make me happy.

Top 10 random objects I am thankful for:

10- My electric toothbrush: because I am too lazy to move my wrist up and down for 2 minutes.

9- Teva flip-flops: no place my feet would rather be.

8- My left pocket: where else would I keep my chapstick?

7- Olive's easy-walk harness: mostly my shoulder joint is thankful for this.

6- "Muntee" and "Fwaggy": otherwise my niece and nephew would never come to my house.

5- Fingernail polish remover: without it our house would still have streaks of blue paint running from the shutters.

4- The boogie board: even if it does fill my suit with sand sometimes.

3- Web-cam: How else could Spiderman have revealed his true identity. (It was Duncan the whole time!)

2- Training clicker: "shake!" -click- -treat- "good dog."

1- Our in-car GPS: It led us 2,265 miles to our new home in North Carolina and has since compensated for my now non-exsistant sense of direction. "Were going east, right?" "South." "DANG IT!!!"


Thursday, November 5, 2009

Home Un-Improvement: Part III

I wasn't planning on having a Part III in this series, but then again I don't plan my un-improvements. Let me just say we wanted to brighten up our faded shutters. I will let the photo tell the rest of the story, because this one is definitely worth a thousand words:

Friday, October 16, 2009

"I don't even have any good skills. You know, like nun-chuck skills, bowhunting skills, computer hacking skills" ....COOKING SKILLS

Sometimes Napoleon says it best. Just look........

This was my attempt at making german pancakes. *Sigh* There was more pancake on the outside of the pan than inside. It's experiences like this that remind me I need to practice my skills. For the record, they did taste good.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Home Un-Improvement: Part II

Chapter 4:
Sealing the Ceiling
When we last left this riveting saga, Dr. Thayn had just squared off the ghastly puncture wound in his otherwise pristine ceiling. Dr. Thayn, being a busy man, had to leave the project for a period of time. Then one afternoon, a burst of energy filled his overworked body and he ascended the ladder once again. This time, he had a piece of dry-wall in hand.
After many screws, several pieces of tape, and lots of putty, Dr. Thayn had done it! He had filled the hole which had haunted him for so long.

He felt so proud of his work, that he thought it would be appropriate to leave the afore mentioned taped section for all to see. Mrs. Thayn, on the other hand, was secretly wishing that he would continue the process of disguising the repair. Unfortunately, subtle hints to her husband went unnoticed.

Many days went by and Mrs. Thayn grew fond of the roughly repaired rectangle. It had become a symbol of life's unpredictability. If she was ever lonely or down, she would look up at it and smile. She would remember her husband and how he had unintentionally made their house a home. She would then remind herself to buy ceiling texture the next time she went to Home Depot.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Howling in the Rain

There are several things I was planning on blogging today, our trip to Washington D.C., fixing the hole in the ceiling, having fun with our friends at a Labor Day BBQ, but this trumps them all.
Olive usually wakes up when Paul gets up for work. That means around 6 a.m. But if he is home and sleeps in, we can expect her to cry to be let out of her kennel about 7 a.m. . On days like that one of us gets up and lets her out the back door. We then go back to sleep. Today was one of those typical mornings. I let Olive out at about 7, and went back to bed. When I woke up at 8:45 I noticed it was still very dark outside. Paul got up and opened the back door to let Olive in so she could eat breakfast. This is what he found: Apparently somewhere in the 2 hours that Olive was outside, it began to rain...hard. Any intelligent dog would go find some shelter. There are a couple of options in our back yard. Option #1: The brand-new dog house purchased for just such an occasion. Option #2: Large bushes that have space underneath them for even a human to sit. Olive chose Option # 3: Sit on the porch in the pouring rain until Paul and Bel get up to let her inside.
She was soaked to the bone, shivering and whining. So much for that awesome dog house.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Home Un-Improvement

Chapter 1 :
The Bed Chamber

It all began on a dark and stormy night.... As rain pelted the windowpanes, Mrs. Thayn, looked up from the pages of the classic romance she had been reading. "Why, Dr. Thayn! I do believe we have a leak in the attic!"
There on the ceiling of the bed chamber, was the unmistakable mark. Damp and yellowing, the spot was a blemish on Dr. and Mrs. Thayn's newly acquired estate."Do not worry yourself, my dear," said Dr. Thayn, a hardworking, intelligent man. "I will venture up into the attic myself and discover the origin of this mysterious leak!"

Chapter 2:
Snow Indoors
Light bobbed from the lantern which adorned Dr. Thayn's forehead. Inside the attic he slowly made his way to a pipe which snaked across the room, eventually exiting the attic directly above the bed chamber.
"Aha!" cried Dr. Thayn. A bead of water hung on a bend in the pipe. "Just as I had suspected! Wont Mrs. Thayn be glad to hear that the mystery has been solved!"
Dr. Thayn turned to exit the attic. Making his way back was like a tightrope act across wooden trusses. Suddenly, halfway to the exit, Dr. Thayn lost his footing and, POP! It snowed white and pink in the sitting room for several moments. Mrs. Thayn, hearing the awful sound, ran from the bed chamber to see what had transpired.
When she entered the sitting room, her eyes fell on a large hole that now adorned the sitting room ceiling. Below was a pile of rubble and fluff. Mrs. Thayn called out in panic, "Dr. Thayn? Are you all right? I heard a most terrible clatter, and here in the sitting room is a large hole!"
Dr. Thayn's voice came from above. "I'm alright my dear. I slipped from the truss and my boot has gone through the ceiling." He was silent for a moment, partly in anger at himself, and partly in anticipation of how Mrs. Thayn would react.
Laughter suddenly floated up through the hole Mr. Thayn's boot had made. "Dr. Thayn," Mrs. Thayn said through her laughter, "Let's go to bed!"

Chapter 3:
Mistakes Can Lead to an Increase
The next morning the noble couple awoke with new perspective on their present situation. This was the perfect opportunity for them to purchase a ladder! Not only would Dr. Thayn be able to fix both the leak and the hole, but all his neighbors and associates would be in awe of his masculinity.
After a trip to the market in the family buggy, Dr. Thayn alighted his new ladder and began the task of repairing the sitting room ceiling. Though not planned, the hole became an opportunity for Dr. Thayn to hone his saw and drill skills. It was also a test of strength, as Dr. Thayn had to look towards the ceiling and hold his arms over his head for quite a period of time.
That night, Dr. and Mrs. Thayn sat in the dining hall together, reflecting on the day's events. They couldn't help but smile at each other. "I do appreciate your skill, Dr. Thayn," Mrs. Thayn admired. "But can I mention one thing?"
"Why of course!" Dr. Thayn replied.
"There is still a hole in my sitting room ceiling, and it's bigger than before!"

To be continued.......

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

5 Year Wedding Anniversary

August 7th was our 5 year anniversary. What a milestone! It is hard to believe it has already been 5 years! We have been on so many adventures! Some were a little on the crazy side, like the time we rappelled down Black Box to take our friend's engagement photos and tried to climb out when it was dark. Or like on our honeymoon when we went white water rafting and Paul rode the front of the raft like a bucking bronco through the biggest rapids. Or the time when we were tubing on Scofield Lake and Paul's elbow gave me a black eye. And my all-time favorite: Teaching Mortiz to rappel in Indian Canyon and getting my shirt caught in the figure 8, having to tear the shirt off with my bare hands (that's right, like the Hulk), drop it 40 feet down, and have Paul lower me to the ground and give me the shirt off his back so Moritz didn't see me naked. I kept my torn shirt as a memento.
This is a tribute to all the fun we've had as a couple these first 5 years of marriage:

We were married in the Manti, Utah LDS Temple on August 7, 2004

2 weeks later we were off to the island of St. Eustatius in the Dutch West Indies:What did we do there???

A lot of SCUBA diving.....

Island Hopping....

(Parasailing in St. Maarten)

(Hiking the highest peak in the Caribbean on Saba)

(Taking a boat to St. Kitts)

(Returning home from St. Kitts with 4 pigs tied up in gunny sacks)

(Visiting the Arecibo Telescope in Puerto Rico)

Community Service.....

Oh! And Paul managed to graduate from the 1st half of Med School.

In the past 5 years we have done many Thayn Family treasure hunts. They are always the highlights of family get-togethers!They almost always involve a cave, steep climb, chocolate, fake jewels and coins, and PIRATES!And, of course a treasure chest.

We have always had a knack for finding weird events to attend like the Hare Krishna Festival of Colors. We went home with rainbow hair and lungs that day!

And who can forget hiking? Some of our favorite hiking adventures have been with our awesome nephews, who we miss very very much now that we are separated the entire length of the United States! Here's hoping we can fill the next 5 years with as many adventures!!!