Archive for December, 2008

Christmas Eve..Eve.. :)

Posted in Dan's World on December 24, 2008 by danchristiansen

Well tomorrow is Christmas Eve..  This Christmas came a lot faster than the Christmas last year, that is for sure.

2008 was a rough year for my family, and I am glad it is almost over with.  My Father had a stroke early in February, and it was a life changing event for us.  He had to under go an unbelievable amount of therapy, rehabilitation, vocal coaching, etc.  He had to learn how to walk again, cook for himself, etc.   He is doing better now.  He has 70% use of his right leg, 100% of his left leg, and about 30% use of his right arm.  He made a miraculous recovery as the doctors thought he many never use his leg again.  But he pulled through.

The stock market, housing market, and general rut the country is in has caused us a lot of grief as well.  Quite a number of our friends and family have been affected by the downturn in the economy.  People have lost their jobs, had their careers slow down, and caused added stress on their families.

Sharon and I also had issues with losing a pregnancy a few months ago as well.  Our friends and family were very supportive, but it still is a great sadness for Sharon and I.  Most of our friends have had kids within the last year, and we were hoping to join the crowd.  We are praying every day that God blesses us with a healthy child and that we can bring them up with good values and morals.

It has been a little over four years since my last surgery for Crohn’s Disease.  That was an awful time for Sharon and I.  It was about six months before my wedding, I had just started a new job, and we were trying to plan out our life.  I have made a good recovery, but have had lots of lasting side effects from the surgery that try to get in my way.  I have overcome them all, and continue to work hard, travel weekly, and provide for my family.  I am so glad those days are behind me, and I pray every night to not have to have any additional surgeries for this awful condition. 

I have a feeling that 2009 is going to be a good year.  I pray for the health of our friends and family, and hope that we can all grow closer to the Lord and each other as the year progresses.  Our friends in our bible study have been great to get to know of the last couple of years and they are great people to be friends with.  Everyone in our group is kind hearted, caring, honest, and always there to lend support to those in need.

Sharon, my Mom, Sharon’s Mom and little Sister, and I are all going to the Stonecreek Church Christmas Eve service tomorrow.  Afterwards, we are going to have a nice dinner with Ham, mac and cheese, fresh baked bread, mashed potatoes, etc.   Then we are going to head over to Sharon’s Aunt and Uncles house where we will all get together to exchange presents and read the story of the birth of Jesus.  Who cares about Santa, Jesus is the real and only reason to celebrate Christmas.  It is sad that Santa (a myth) gets ten times the amount of attention as Jesus does.  But such is life I guess. 

Sharon and I are going to put together our New Years resolutions for savings goals, personal goals, etc before the New Year begins.  We have done a good job this year with our goals, but next year we should do a lot better, especially with budgeting money per month and saving more. 

We are thankful for our friends and family, our health, our jobs, and all the blessings Jesus has given to us and our friends and family.

Looking forward to a Merry Christmas with our families.

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Humuhumunukunukuapua’a

Posted in Dan's World on December 2, 2008 by danchristiansen

The titile is actually the name of the state fish of Hawaii.  It takes you a while to be able to say it without stuttering or forgetting a sylable.  🙂 

Sharon and I got back from our one week vacation to Maui on Sunday.  We had a great time there and did all kinds of interesting activities. 

We stayed at the Waldorff Astoria’s Grand Wailea which is a five star hotel on the western coast of Maui.  Wailea beach is famous for snorkeling, SCUBA, and for great sunsets.   The resort was very beautiful and had a lot of tropical plants, palm trees, and wildlife that made it spectacular.  We walked all over the large hotel grounds and went to their amazing swimming pools complete with a full water park.  They had at least five slides, and the worlds only water elevator.  The water elevator is this 25 foot tall cylinder that you get in, close the door, and it fills with water.  You sit on this giant innertube along with 20 other people and it slowly raises you to the top where you get off.  It was very cool!

Sharon and I went on a dive advanture where we did SNUBA.  SNUBA is just like SCUBA, but instead of wearing the packs on your back you have your airtank on a small inflatible raft.  You are connected to the airtank by a 20 foot long airhose.  That way you can dive down up to 20 feet and not have to worry about the weight of the packs.  It was great.  We got to take a ton of pictures underwater, and I even used my video camera in a waterproof housing to capture some images.  The only downside to the waterproof shell for my camcorder was that the air inside the case made it very hard to swim down with since it kept trying to raise me out of the water like a raft.  If I stood vertically, I could stay down some what, but if I tried to swim horizontally, I would rise right up to the top of the water.   I stopped using the camera after a while so that I could dive down and see the bottom of the reef.  Next time I will buy some weights for it so that I can stay down with ease.

We also went on a real submarine ride.  It goes down to up to 130 feet and stays down for 45 minutes.  It was very cool and is one of the only real subs in all of Hawaii.  The other sub companies don’t dive down, they just have glass bottoms on them and stay at the surface.  

We got to see ship wrecks, lots of eels, fish, and turtles during our submarine ride.  It was very relaxiing and I highly recommend it!

We took a tour of the Haleakala Crater which is a little over 10,000 feet above sea-level.   We got up at 3:00 AM to drive all the way up there just to see the world famous sunrise over the crater.  Conditions were perfect and the sunrise lit all the clouds with a firery light.  It was amazing!   It made it worth it freezing to death up there for hours in 50 mile an hour winds with 35 degree termperatures.   After the sunset, we went back down where it was warm again and thawed out.

We also took a helicopter ride over western Maui and Moloki.  Moloki has the tallest sea cliffs in the world and they are around 3,000 feet!  The North Shore of Moloki is one of the places used to film Jurassic Park.

We had a nice romantic sunset dinner on Thanksgiving and had all kinds of great food.  It was a great time had by all.

I definitely miss the weather.  It was snowing here yesterday.  Not very much, but still it is rare to see snow in the South.