Thanksgiving Extravaganza!

For the first time the Lees spent the thanksgiving holidays away from family...luckily they were able to share it with some very good friends. Scott and Nancy came over for our turkey cooking, pie eating, movie watching extravaganza. It was lots of fun. Ly cooked a turkey for the first time in her entire life and was overjoyed when she did not have to order takeout at the last minute.

It was so nice to have Scott and Nancy drive up from Hershey to hang out with us...we wish they were able to stay longer (like forever!) but alas real life called and they had to head back home. Hopefully they will get together more often and soon.

Lots of photos were taken so as soon soon as we manage to put them on our computer we'll post some.

After thanksgiving, Alan and Ly managed to brave the crazy crowds for a once in a lifetime shopping extravaganza on Friday morning. An experience they have decided they will never ever do again...too many people and some things are just not worth getting up at 3 am for. But it was still a fun memory...and we did get some pretty cool xmas stuff.

Sat was spent hanging out with Danielle and Brandon who drove down from Baltimore for the morning. We, along with the rest of the DC metro population, took advantage of the beautiful weather and went to the mall. We ended up at the Museum of Natural History - always a favorite with the dinosaur bones, diamonds and giant squid. In the afternoon we had a nice lunch of leftover turkey sandwiches with Rich...always nice to get to see some of your favorite people in the span of one weekend!

Anyway we are so grateful for our family and friends -- especially our friends who live relatively close they certainly have made the move out to the east coast much more enjoyable for the Lees. We love you! =)


A snapshot of fall

One of Alan's favorite past times is going on drives with Ly. They pack up the car with snacks, music, cameras, binoculars, blankets, pillows, and of course piou and panda (they have adventures) and then jump in the car. Sometimes Alan has a secret plan of where he wants to explore and sometimes he just drives wherever the road takes him.

Recent excursions have included drives to pumpkin patches, apple orchards and the local mountains to enjoy the colors of fall. Ly loves fall. The air is crisp, the trees change all sorts of beautiful colors, animals are out gathering food before the snowstorms hit...and it is perfect photo taking weather.


Wall-E Movie Night

The Disney movie Wall-E came out on video yesterday...something that both Ly and Alan have been eagerly anticipating for months. When the movie first came out in theaters, we saw it multiple times. In fact for weeks after seeing, Ly was known to randomly burst out in sayings such as "wallleeee" "evvveeeeaaa" "mo." and "ta-daaaa!" Alan even joined in the fun from time to time.

And despite the fact that Ly is 24 years old, she desperately wants the dancing Wall-e toy she discovered at Target. Wall-e sings and dances to whatever song is playing in your ipod and says all sorts of quotes from the movie. Oh to be a kid again. =)

Anyway last night, the Lee family rented Wall-E from the local redbox (a rather brilliant idea where people can rent any new release for $1) and enjoyed an evening full of Disney fun. We even made a special popcorn treat, which was full of peanut butter and chocolate goodness. If you're interested in how we made it, let us know and we'll put up the instructions.

Needless to say, Wall-E is definitely one for the DVD Library.


Prop 8

Hi, this is Lyanna for a quick second. It is no secret that I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. While I may be Mormon, I have many family and friends who are not. And I certainly hope that I have been respectful of their beliefs and decision to not be a member of my church.

With the recent passage of Prop 8 in California, many people have made some incorrect assumptions about me and made rude statements simply based on my religion. Now I guess we can put aside the fact that I no longer live in California and was therefore was unable to vote on Prop 8 for a minute, but I feel that I should take a moment to speak out about the backlash of prop 8. It makes me sad that people think just because I am LDS I automatically voted YES (or would have voted yes) on 8. I personally know a lot of LDS people who didn't vote for that proposition. And if I were in California, I would have voted NO. I think that nobody should have the right to deny a group of individuals rights that they already had. The decision about gay marriage in California was already made before it was on the ballot.

However, the recent reports I have read and heard about all over the United States in regards to the backlash against the mormon church makes me sad. It is in everyone's right to protest (thanks to the constitution), however I wish people were able to do it more respectfully. And I wish I could understand their desire to target the LDS Church. I understand that people claim donations from indvidiuals (not the church) largely contributed to the passage of the propisition. However, just because certain people choose to donate money, doesn't mean that you should protest against any organization that those people belong to. It makes me wonder if Prop 8 had been defeated if everyone who voted against it would be converging on gay and lesbian hangouts and vandalising their property.

I would like to encourage everyone to focus their attention and efforts away from the LDS church and instead taking this issue to Congress. Marriage is a national issue - it crosses state lines and we should stand up and have it be treated as one.

Finally, I think that the church put it best in the following press release issued by the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints:

"Since the people of California voted to reaffirm the sanctity of traditional marriage between a man and a woman on November 4, 2008, places of worship have been targeted by opponents of Proposition 8 with demonstrations and, in some cases, vandalism. People of faith have been intimidated for simply exercising their democratic rights. These are not actions that are worthy of the democratic ideals of our nation. The end of a free and fair election should not be the beginning of a hostile response in America.

The Church is keenly aware of the differences of opinion on this difficult and sensitive matter. The reasons for this principled stand in defense of marriage have already been articulated elsewhere. However, some of what we have seen since Californians voted to pass Proposition 8 has been deeply disappointing.

Attacks on churches and intimidation of people of faith have no place in civil discourse over controversial issues. People of faith have a democratic right to express their views in the public square without fear of reprisal. Efforts to force citizens out of public discussion should be deplored by people of goodwill everywhere.

We call upon those who have honest disagreements on this issue to urge restraint upon the extreme actions of a few that are further polarizing our communities and urge them to act in a spirit of mutual respect and civility towards each other."

Anyway I hope that everyone has a good day. And if we disagree, lets agree to disagree and still be friends. =)

November 4, 2008

So this is a bit late but on the 4th was Alan's 25th birthday. The Lee family celebrated by voting (obviously) and then allowing Alan to indulge in all sorts of sweets. The first stop was at the local Starbucks where Ly convinced the clerk to give them free tea instead of the free coffee everyone got for voting. Second stop was Krispy Kreme for Alan's free star shaped sugar and paste filled treat. After Alan managed to collect his share of freebies for voting, the Lees met up with Justin and Kristy for some Chinese food. It was then off to the Lees for an evening of watching the polls come in and enjoying some birthday cheesecake.

When the results became apparent and Obama was named President-elect, Ly and Alan were very excited to say the least. No matter how you voted, you must admit that Nov 4, 2008 was a very historic night in our nation's history...and an evening to not be forgotten for quite a long time.

Here's hoping Obama lives up to all the potential and promises!


Happy Voting Day!

So today is THE day. The day where the fate of our country is decided...at least for the next four years. While this election has certainly unleashed its fair share of mudslinging and scandals, we will certainly be glad when it's all finally over. So everyone, do your civic duty and go out and vote.

Here's hoping the right candidate wins today -- and we can have four years of change. =)