Thursday, August 14, 2008

Happy Belated Birthday Uncle RusS!

(Russ in 'the line' at our wedding October 2000)
Allrighty this is Russ (far left above) around the time I got to know him. It was during Dan's and I dating days (I think my favorite part is his braces).
What I remember about Russ at this age is that he always had a girlfriend! ha ha ha. I was an EFY counselor the session that Dan's brothers and sister attended at BYU one summer. I remember seeing Russ comforting one of his 'girlfriends' during a dance I was chaperoning. Russ was NOT a player however. I could tell he was sincerely concerned about the girls welfare and whatever was making her sad. He always had a few good best friend guys...but there was always a girlfriend. He knew how to snag those women! I got to know Russ even better during the time that Dan and I went and lived with Dan's parents for 3 months. We were finishing up grad school and doing a clinical in Phoenix. To save money we lived in Dan's parents basement. Russ was the only one left at home at this point. He was a senior, and I am sure it was hard having us impose on his "kingdom".
(Dan and Russ tubing at Lake Pleasant while we lived w/ the fam!)
I am sure I kept the mommy mode around him and served out much unsolicited advice from: his high blood pressure, to how he should be dating. However, he seemed to take it all in stride and actually listen to me sometimes!
I had 2 boys (Colton and Sterling)at the time, and they LOVED their cool uncle. They always looked forward to him coming home as much as daddy! They loved wrestling and playing with him. They also LOVED watching him spin all the couch pillows with his one finger super fast!

(One of the boys favorite parts of the day--Colton playing with Uncle Russ)

I got to see some of Russ's passions during this time (besides girls... EVEN though he did have a serious girlfriend). He loved playing basketball. He was on the high school varsity b-ball team, and would go and play pick up games almost every night off-season.

Russ LOVED cold cereal and cheez-its.

I remember we all would go work out together (Dan, I, Russ, Slice and the boys) at the Y we had a membership too.That was always a treat-ha ha ha.
Russ was smart! That kid was a last minute procrastinator when it came to school work--but somehow he always managed to pull it off and get GREAT grades. I remember him writing a bazillion page paper almost all night one night.
He was always helping his girlfriends sister who struggled with academics to advice. Like I said, he has a sensitive nature.
He was not afraid to hang with an 'old married couple' when we did get together. He was not embarrassed to be around me or the kids.
I also remember Russ being very conscientious about money--which has not changed!!!
(Russ's missionary Homecoming September 2007-hanging with the girl cousins Lola (l) and Dacie (r))
I remember getting very teary -eyed when he left on his mission to Guatemala, because he had ALWAYS been a part of my kids growing up and I KNEW they would change drastically while he was gone for 2 years. However, he just picked up where he left off-lovin' on the GALS (2 nieces)he missed being born.
We enjoyed hearing him grow on his mission, and be so humble. It was fun writing letters to him every other week and drawing pictures for him!

Russ never wavered. He always knew the gospel was true and never doubted living the commandments- He just did it.

(Russ front and center at his wedding! June 2008)
Russ came home from his mission in September and was married by JUNE!!! We had very little time to catch up-BUT we are so glad to have a new sis (who happened to be a family friend before the mission!) to catch up with too.

(Russ and his wife Selena...celebrating his birthday August 2, 2008 in Utah)

Now he is married and has a girlfriend FOREVER- We cannot wait to see him as a FUN dad. Russ knows how to have fun and dance (typically the Sorensen's are a bit more reserved) SO we know his birthday celebrations are always a blast! We wished we lived closer to help celebrate, but until then.... Happy Birthday Russ! There is allot to celebrate about you!



TexasTwinsTwice said...

Sounds like a great guy & a great uncle!

Dawn said...

what a great tribute to a great guy! (course I'm a little prejudiced!) Over the years Russ has loved Ninja turtles, skateboards, Nintendo, cold cereal and milk, basketball, EFY, friends, missionary companions, special people in Guatemala, reading the Book of Mormon, and now Selena. Thanks for the memories, Alicia...and for caring about all your in-laws!

Russell said...

wow.... i loved that. thanks alicia. you should do that about me more often... hahaha.

Allison Barry said...

Sweet Russ!! All i remember about Russ in high school is that he was Amy's brother, and always seemed to be shirtless in their house. haha. I also remember how passionate he got about things, yelling "DUDE!" or "BUDDY!" when things got him excited. I'm so glad he married my Selena!

Meggie said...

You are such a sweet person to remember everyone's birthday and to even blog about it! How is school going for the little guys!

Selena and Russ!! said...

do you know he STILL loves cold cereal and cheezits... haha i love that post alicia. I forgot to comment on it. It was a great post! We should all talk about russ more often! haha!