Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A January Weekend in the Napa Valley

Greg and I flew back to California with Jen and the girls on Martin Luther King weekend. Matthew's home town of St Helena is beautiful. We were told the weather was exceptionally nice for January! The Heils were the perfect hosts and treated us to brunch on Saturday. Matthew's brother Dominic and his girlfriend Leah(now fiance!) joined us.
When in Napa, one visits wineries. The Castle Winery was a breathtaking combination of medieval design and modern winery technology. We toured and tasted happily.

We had a picnic lunch at Santui Winery where Matthew used to work. It was great to be dining outdoors in January!
Jen and Matthew have a nice location. Their home is within walking distance of town, and there's a park across the street.
Lydia loves playing in the pantry.
The Heil home in St Helena.
On Sunday we went to Mass at a chapel near St Helena, surrounded by vineyards.

Matthew gave us a great tour of St Helena and environs, with interesting historical detail.
We enjoyed a festive Sunday dinner hosted by family friends of the Heils.

On our way back to the airport we took the scenic route. San Francisco Bay( and Alcatraz) are in the background.
You can see the Golden Gate Bridge behind us. We had a ball and enjoyed our break from winter. Thanks , Jen and Matthew!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Home for Christmas!

We are thankful that Fred came home from the hospital three days before Christmas. He was delighted to have the whole family together- hectic but good.
Our family now includes baby Alexandra Marie Heil, born on December 12. She was baptized at our parish, St Patrick's, on December 26th.

Our grandchildren are a wonderful and lively group! They had fun together.
Luis' birthday is two days before Christmas, and Carolyn coordinated an 80's themed celebration.

Our family includes both Eagles and Vikings fans, so we anticipated the playoff game between our teams on Sunday Jan. 4th.
We are enjoying our unexpected and enjoyable post season run with Lydia.
We look forward to the New Year, and hope to grow in gratitude to God for the many gifts He gives us.