Saturday, July 25, 2009


I remember when I was little (maybe 4) my parents told me to pick up some toys before going to bed. I gathered up a bunch of little toys and put them on a big tray and carried them into my bedroom to put them away. My dad told me I was "resourceful". I thought that that was a pretty big word that that I must be pretty neat.

Well, this week Abby also proved to be pretty resourceful (in her own sort of a way). She wanted to play with the basketball arcade thing while we were at Jumpin' Jacks (a place with bounce houses and big blow up slides). I told her that we didn't have the money to play the basketball she took matters into her own hands.

In other news, here are a few things I love about Utah: Liberty Park, the cabin, pointing temples out to the kiddos, Pioneer Day, national parks and lots and lots of people. (What don't I love? 102 degree days.)

Monday, July 20, 2009

Vacations within a vacation

Last Sunday, Abby drove with grandma and grandpa to IF. She had a great time. She has told me lately that cows are her favorite animal so the trip to the dairy was a highlight. (And with a pink poodle purse from grandma, it is bound to be a hit.)On Tuesday, Briton and I joined them. It was fun to visit with Mike's parents and both his sisters. Thanks for some very nice days.

On Thursday, the kids and I drove into Yellowstone (yeah!). On that first day I learned that I am not a supermom and that I cannot do Yellowstone by myself with an infant and a toddler. (I tried, but was not terribly successful.) Once we met up with family, it was fantastic. Yellowstone is my magical place. We spent the weekend there with my parents, three sisters and families, a couple aunts, uncles and cousins.

My sister takes great pictures and she captured the highlight of Abby's trip well.
We love bear watching. This is Briton watching (actually there really was a grizzly bear we were looking at).Ranger AbbyAbby and Jack were the designated reverence children apparently:)
Kids are very patient geyser gazers. (They really did do well, even when we had to wait ~45 minutes.)Thanks for viewing - and go to Yellowstone!

PS I just noticed that in all of these pictures (representing a full week) Abby is wearing only two different shirts. Yes, we've been doing laundry and, yes, she has others.

Monday, July 13, 2009

A whirlwind

Mike and I have commented that it is kind of strange to be tourists in one's own home town. You don't have to ask for directions anywhere. Nothing is really new, but instead you get to pick out all your favorite destinations (so you're seldom disappointed). You get to go to all your favorite restaurants all at once. There are places to stay and tons of people to see. More than anything, it just feels a bit different to be on vacation in a place that is so incredibly familiar.

The past five days have truly been a whirlwind. We've done so much. It has been a lot of fun! I think that tomorrow will be a down day.

Friday morning Mike and I went to the temple. It was not a 6 hour excursion. I don't mind the 6 hour plan (it usually involves eating out and Costco), but there is something to be said for the 15 minute convenience factor, too. We went to Draper. Then we met up with both families for the Oquirrh Mountain Temple Open House. It is a neat temple with some unique design features. I liked it.

We had a picnic in the canyons with my family where Grandma Marva helped Abby roast marshmallows and Brian terrorized my baby.
Saturday we visited my Grandma Marva and my Grandma and Grandpa Ray and Ellen. (This is also the time frame when we went on a tour of our old house. Their remodel is awesome and somehow they have accomplished in 6 months what we never came close to doing in 8 years - they have completely eliminated the morning glory from the grass. Now if I could just get rid of all the clover in the yard back home.)

We attended a baby shower/family pool party for Bekah. We are excited for her little one to make his appearance and enjoyed seeing everyone. (This was Briton's first real time in the pool, I think.)
We ended the day with a very nice visit to Mary and Frank's.
Today we attended church in our favorite Salt Lake area ward. (It was wonderful to see everyone.) This evening was full of festivities for this delicious one-year-old. Happy birthday to Miles!

Friday, July 10, 2009


We had a great day today. Here are loads of pictures:

First stop - Breakfast at grandmas

Next, a visit to the cemetery (Briton's first)
While we were there Briton worked on his developing talent of sitting up

Then a visit to a most scrumptious cousin's baby at PCMC (another cousin's baby is also there, but I didn't get to see her - a shout out to both)

Lunch with Lara and then a visit to more grandmas and grandpas
Very wiggly babies (note the blurry appendages)
3 moms + 5 1/2 kids (plus the 1 mom and her twins that will arrive any day who had left before the cameras came out)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Gripe (cont.) - The Joke is on Us

With regard to the high priced passports we just purchased for our children:

We found out through a family in our branch (who is traveling to Palmyra via Canada without passports for their kids this weekend) and through a bit of good old fashioned Google searching that our kids really don't need passports. We recognize that this was our fault (ouch!), but I figured I'd publicize our error on the blog to save the rest of you $85/kid (unless you already figured it out:). Here is the scoop: If you're traveling by land or sea to Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean, children under 16 don't need a passport. In defense of Mike and I, we took Abby to Canada in 2007 and were told that as of 1/1/2008, she'd need a passport. The government changed their minds sometime (and, yes, I think it has been a while and, no, we didn't discover it until today - 6 days too late) and went back to the "birth certificate is enough" rule. Air travel is a different story.

So, basically, I need to take my kids to Europe or fly them to Canada to make our $170 worth our while, right?

Sunday, July 5, 2009

UPDATE: Fourth of July

Mike just pointed out that if you click on the panorama shot that I posted today, you might notice that three of the kids (including Abby) sprouted twins. Kind of fun...

Happy Fourth of July!

This weekend we went camping with 3 other families from our branch at the property of another branch member. It was a lot of fun and the setup was great. The panorama distorted the shape and size of the campground, but you get the idea. The property is wooded, very pretty and only 35ish minutes from home. The food, company and weather were great.

Last night we went to see fireworks at the St. John's City Park. For a small town, the display was impressive. A few things we learned:

1. All the debris we found out our blanket after the show might be an indication that we were sitting too close.
2. Briton was enamored by the lights. He sat like this the entire time.

Pre-fireworks he was subjected to nonstop tickling by his mother (who has curly hair in MI).
3. We might have pushed Abby a bit over the weekend. This is how she looked for the first 5 minutes. The next picture shows how she looked the remainder of the display.

We also learned that: Marinda and Briton only look like they have chicken pox (thanks to the mosquitos) and that long pants and jackets are common attire around here on the 4th in the evening. (Hopefully Utah can stay kind of cool for the next little bit. I am not missing the 90s and 100s.)

We'll see many of you soon:)
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