New Years in Arizona

Upon arriving in Phoenix, the first order of business was to meet our newest nephew – little Julian Joseph Harp, and to introduce him to Colt! These two are about 3 1/2 months apart and we are so thrilled that they will be lifelong friends as well as cousins.
image Uncle Joe is a pro.image Shannon & Mike with the babes!image (1) After hanging out and doing the annual sibling-secret-santa gift exchange, we got ready for a photo-shoot. Just like my family, Michael’s parents were excited to have everyone in the same place so we gathered in their driveway (“The Lane”) and their front orchard (“The Grove”) and smiled!

Sharon & Ollie with their 5 kids + 3 spouses + 6 kids!Harper Pic Culhane & Julian sporting Aunt Sheryl originals.harper - 52 harper - 48 harper - 32 harper - 30 harper - 36 harper - 28 harper - 54Proud to be wearing our “Mike Kopp for Governor” T-shirts! (PS – If you’re a Colorado resident, vote for Mike Kopp!)
DSC_7614_edited-2a That afternoon, Michael’s good friend Eric stopped by to say hello and meet Culhane.image (2) And then, the moment that Colt had been waiting for his whole life…he got to meet his godparents!! Mike & Moira were so awesome about wanting to be at his baptism that they were the first ones to book their flights for the trip. Then, when we had to change the location, we looked into changing their flights as well, but all things considered we felt like it made the most sense for them to stick with their original itinerary and visit us in Phoenix.

Meeting moments!IMG_3894 IMG_3897 IMG_3901The next day we were all working hard to get ready for the Harper’s holiday party. Shannon’s family was in charge of the luminaries which lit the walkway from the valet station to the party entrance.
image (1)Michael was leading the caipirinha effort which involved picking blood-oranges from The Grove, juicing them, then mixing the drinks in giant pitchers.
image (2)Strolling around just before the party started.
DSC_0117 Musicians getting set up, ready to greet the guests.DSC_0125Getting the party started!
DSC_0127I wish I had more photos from the actual event, but we were too busy enjoying ourselves! The party was Mexican & Brazilian themed so they served margaritas and caipirinhas, as well as a Mexican chicken & rice meal along with feijoada, among other things. I think there were about 150 people and it was a blast!

The next morning, Colt went hiking with his dad and godparents.
IMG_3910Nana snuggle time.
IMG_5317 Papa showing off Culhane in his winter gear.

image (3)For New Years, Michael, Lise, Sharon, Ollie and I went up to their cabin at Hidden Valley. Colt was all ready for a fun New Years dinner.DSC_0132 The next morning, Michael and I were excited to show Culhane around the property.DSC_0143 DSC_0147 DSC_0154 DSC_0156 DSC_0167 DSC_0174 DSC_0188 DSC_0204 DSC_0230 DSC_0242After returning to Phoenix, one of Michael’s friends hosted an awesome tree-burning party. It’s hard to show how (almost) out of control it was, but I’d say it was a life-long lesson in realizing what a fire-hazard dried out Christmas trees can be. They seriously took about 15 seconds to burn completely.
IMG_5328 IMG_5323 More fun with friends – Dups & Fletcher!IMG_3926And, last but certainly not least – MAJOR celeb citing at The Henry – Arie Luyendyk Jr. from Emily’s season of the Bachelorette.  IMG_5333We were sad to leave but it felt good to get back home to São Paulo (which, upon landing in Brazil, was Culhane’s 16th flight!). Happy 2014 everyone!

2 thoughts on “New Years in Arizona

  1. I love all these amazing photos…but it is literally the last sentence in this entry that made my mouth drop…Colt’s 16th flight! AH! What a pro traveler he is. 🙂

    Miss and love y’all!!!

  2. Wonderful photos of the fun in Phoenix and Hidden Valley. Those places provide such great memories for us! The new tree house is spectacular – Colt and Julian will have great fun there.
    Love, Nanny and Papa

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