Wednesday, December 26, 2007

the real American Idol

We've been planning this night for the last couple of days: scales, lyrics, pitches. Well, tonight was the night: our first annual American Idol (home style) night. Cal was the new Simon Cowell, Doll was the Yo-Dawg Randy, and Sophie was none other than the babe, Paula Abdul. But where's the Ryan Seacrest: the soul of the show? No worries, Ali covered that with the yarn ball as his microphone.

The front room was the stage, the broom was the microphone, and Luke was the DJ iPod man. We had a little bit of AC/DC from Chetty, Louis from Dad, Stevie Wonder from Doll, and then some duets. It was absolutely hysterical with Dad as the evil Simon, Mom doin' the impersonations of Randy, and little miss Sophie singing HSM2 (and very good at that, by the way). But don't forget Luke who busted out the moves and words from the 80s, plus Cha-Cha's special guest appearance --- we were very honored, indeed.

It was an absolute memory, and now a must-have Close/Hansen tradition. Enjoy the videos!

Monday, December 3, 2007

a catalog of trees

Every year the fam finds our tree at the lot on 7th and 27th. There weren't peanuts this year, but trees, yes. We walked up and down the rows of trees, and up and down again, but since we like skinny trees, we're pretty fast. Within fifteen minutes we had her picked. Behold. And now she stands in our bay window ready to be lit and decorated.

There's just something about having a live tree in the home. It smells like Christmas, and I love knowing that we hand- picked it. Honestly, if I could bottle Christmas, I would bottle that smell of our front room at Christmas. I love that we have always have a skinny tree. Every year. The ornaments each have their own place, the lights are ten times round round the tree, and it just fits our personalities. They will always remind me of Home.

Christmas is so much more than the actual day of Christmas --- it's the entire season. It's the decorating, it's the music, it's the caroling, it's the ice skating, it's the making of ginger bread houses, and it's giving. I love December, and it's already the second.

Happy December.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


We walked up the stairs toward the bleachers at Steiner's indoor pool and through the door, and suddenly the echo of voices and water splashes bouncing off the tile walls surrounded us. The bleachers were full of cheering parents and fellow students, so Mom and I made our way to the side, looking for Kathy who was also there supporting Madi. Once found, we all cheered together as East High-ers swam their fastest.

Suddenly, though, Madi was next to us. She hadn't swam yet, but was up next. She wanted to say hi to us, though, and make sure we knew which lane we knew she'd be swimming: lane four.

Within minutes, Madi was standing on the jump off, goggles poised, eyes set for the end of the lane. The gun sounded, and splash! Madi was in. Swimming is so beautiful. There just is this fluid grace about putting one arm in front of another. We cheered and cheered, and after her 50 free- style, Madi came in third, 36 seconds.

Who could get up in front of so many in a swimsuit, swim under a clock, and against four schools? Not many. But Madi has always been fearless. Mom was saying on the way home how she was the child who could get a refill of ketchup at a restaurant without hesitation. She was the child who did the Clayton play without hesitation. The rest of the Close kids have been pretty shy, so swim team is huge. Wahoo, Madi!

typical post-Sunday dinner:

the process of Garden Park

Garden Park is finally (almost) finished. After a little over a year of construction, it seems that Sunday 9 December will be our first day back. There were some troubles with the carpet and it bubbling, but they've sorted it out, and the carpet stays.

The gazebo was also refinished, and here the men are installing the new columns. They were made in Boston, and look identical to the original.

We're ecstatic and very impressed with the work.

to be or not to be --- that is the question:

Chetty just performed in Bonneville's Hamlet. He was a mime, and an excellent one at that. But not only was he a fabulous on-stage man, he was also the lights man. Yes, he controlled the lights, and he loved it.

He had practice practically every day after school, sometimes before, and two full Saturdays.

What a stud!


Bringin' back the 60s, and
Chetty the hobo.

authentic sam

Ah yes, Sam the Nerd: pens in the pocket, glasses (mom actually used to wear these), a short tie (thanks to Luke), and one pant leg rolled up. It was Fall Fling, and a girl in Sam's seminary class asked him. "I didn't know her. She was completely random." But hey, Sam's a good sport, and he went. Doesn't he look s' darn cute? He's pretty much a babe.

all you need is love

Yes, that is mom on the tramp. What a peach.

hold on!

Behold the riders of the new Park City ride: the Alpine Coaster. It was crazy intense, and the kids had a ball. It was the perfect fall weather activity.

Monday, November 19, 2007

madi moo

Madi has fabulous friends. Every Friday night she invites them over for movie night. Sometimes she forgets to tell Mom that they're coming, and suddenly there are six giggling girls in our kitchen. But they're fabulous, and they have so much fun with Madi, so it's always fun. Madi is in high school! She's a freshman with Luke, and they walk to school together every morning. And then she does swim team every day after school, too, and she's doing so well.

september 24

We finally have all the pictures, so now we're going to play a little game called catch-up. First off, Noah has hit the double digits. He turned ten way back in September, and now he's ten and two months. He's such a great kid, and having he and Chetty together is a riot. They are such a good team, and such best friends. Hoorah for Noah! Ten!

Friday, October 26, 2007