Sunday, December 21, 2008

White Christmas? No thanks.

All over the country there are reports of airport closures, record snow falls, even snow in places it doesn't usually snow. I was just checking out to see how cold it will be when I fly home to Salt Lake City in a few days, and I was not happy with the forecast.

Current SLC conditions: 25 degrees, but feels like 14. Snow showers are predicted for the next 6 days of the week.

DC's current weather: 32 but feels like 21. No snow forecasted.

Let it be known that I hate snow. Which brings me to my next thought...

Tallahassee, Florida: On Christmas it will be a sunny 79 degrees. No snow. Ever.

Last Christmas my family flew to the Gulf Coast to spend Christmas with me in Florida. We rented a cute, little beach house on the Gulf, and enjoyed white sandy beaches, dolphins splashing in the waves, alligator boat tours, and building sand castles. While the rest of the country got blasted with snow, we were enjoying peaceful, sunny blue skies, completely snow free.

This year, it is a different story. We are back to the traditional Christmas of going home for the holidays. I fly home on Wednesday, where there will be LOTS of snow blanketing the ground. Perhaps there will be a Christmas miracle, all the snow will melt, and I can once again enjoy a sunny Christmas. I can at least hope, right?

So, in honor of a once warmer time, just a year ago, here is a fun video summarizing our Christmas in paradise...

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Candrians Go to Washington

This year my mom put me in charge of writing our traditional family Christmas letter. They're always so boring and predictable (the letters, not my family), so I thought I'd spice it up a bit and write it newspaper style. Amy is also posting this to her blog. But granted the subject matter, you really can't post it enough. Enjoy.

The Candrians Go to Washington

By: Andrea Candrian
Candrian Family Staff Writer
Sunday, December 4, 2008; Page A01

WASHINGTON, DC – It would seem that fate and the East Coast would collide in 2008, bringing together, once again, all the children of Mike and Joy Candrian.

You may recall, Brittany was the first to make the move to Washington, D.C., back in 2005. Rob and Lorena followed close behind in 2006. And this year, Andrea and Amy caught Potomac fever too.

First, an update on Rob and Lorena: they are busy preparing for a big move overseas. This next summer they’ll pack up their belongings and head to Stockholm, Sweden, where the State Department has given Rob his first assignment. They’re both busy learning the Swedish language and keeping in shape. Much of Lorena’s spare time in 2008 was spent bike racing. You can check out one of her races on youtube: Rob couldn’t let Lorena have all the fun staying fit, so he trained and did his first triathlon. Sorry, no video available.

Brittany and Brian are still living in Richmond, VA, just a few hours south of D.C. Brittany landed a job in Congressman Eric Cantor’s (R-VA) district office in Richmond. She occasionally gets to head back to her old turf in D.C. for training on Capitol Hill. She couldn’t be happier. Meanwhile, her husband, Brian, is busy pulling teeth. He has a year and a half left to go in dental school at VCU before he can officially be called Dr. Richman. Anyone need a root canal? Brian needs some practice.

As for Andrea, she’s slightly regretting her move to D.C., now that the weather has gotten bitterly cold. She ditched her CBS reporting gig in sunny Florida this spring to pursue a press job on Capitol Hill. She now works for Senator Bennett (R-UT) as his Deputy Press Secretary. All you Utahans can rest assured that the Senator will be getting only the best news coverage on how your tax dollars are wisely being spent.

Amy graduated from Brigham Young University in April. She didn’t want to be the only Candrian kid left back west, so she too headed to D.C. She interned with the American Diabetes Association this summer. That led to a full-time job at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), where she now works as a program assistant in the office of HIV/AIDS. She’ll be headed to Africa sometime in 2009 for a business trip. Amy has discovered that post-college life, aka growing up, is slightly overrated.

“Do I want to stay on the East Coast,” Amy questioned. “Nope. I’ve lived in California, and that’s the funnest place I’ve ever been.”

Mike and Joy wouldn’t mind it if their youngest moved closer to home. They, of course, aren’t really enjoying life as empty nesters as much as they thought they would. In 2008 they made four trips to D.C. to visit their children. While it’s not likely they’ll be moving there anytime soon, they’re realizing their West Coast blood is running a little thin these days.

“I miss my kids,” Mike and Joy are constantly heard saying. Joy is spending her lonely hours perfecting her oil painting skills and working for an architecture firm. Meanwhile, Mike continues working for the church, keeping up on the latest novels, and jogging on a broken foot.

If you’d like to join the Candrians, and millions of other Americans, at the Inauguration in January, give any one of them a call. They insist they'll give you a good rate on a place to stay.

Who knows where the Candrians will be a year from now? They’ll keep you posted. For now, they wish you a Merry Christmas and all the best in 2009.

You can reach Mike and Joy via email at or