December 30, 2010

Thanksgiving - a little diifferent

As you may know, I am very into ceremony and tradition.  I find stability and serenity in the production of holidays.  But this year was destined to be different.  It was my family's year rotation for Thanksgiving, but with Anne's sickness, everyone agreed that Mom and Dad needed to be out there with them for the holiday.

What that meant for us was we were left to our own devices to celebrate the holiday.

Scott has always wanted to go to a restaurant for Thanksgiving.  I don't think sitting in covered wagons was what he envisioned, but with little kids, it sounded like a fun Thanksgiving dinner.  So we joined up with Scott's parents fordinner in Ogden at Prairie Schooner.

The company was fantastic, the ambiance was really fun and the food was in HUGE portions and pretty good.  I think the part that surprised us all the most was that going to a restaurant for Thanksgiving Dinner is not cheaper than cooking it yourself.  But there is less mess.

After dinner we went to a movie.  Which I do think is a great Thanksgiving day activity, but so does the rest of Ogden.  We went and saw Tangled.  We all thought it was just okay.  As we have heard everyone else raving about it, we are not thinking maybe it was the venue that made us enjoy it less.  It was a small screen and there were flecks that I found myself tracking throughout the movie.

It was a different Thanksgiving.  But it was an enjoyable one.  Do I want to go to a restaurant again for Thanksgiving?  NO.  Wait, did I say that too forcefully?  I prefer a good old family cooked meal even if there are parts of it that are cold.  But, I also know that Scott is definitely up for dining out again for the biggest meal of the year.

November snowfall - it didn't stick

November welcomed a "big" snow storm.  Of course it was nothing like the severe winter weather warnings telling us that it was going to be the storm of the year and possibly the decade.  Businesses closed early.  Everyone rushed home from work and shopping to make sure that they were safe.

The storm didn't come.

Then  we managed to get a little storm - one that was enough for the girls to play in.  But the snow melted in no time.  And we returned to green grass and loads of leaves still on the trees.

At least there was enough for one day of winter fun and a snow man that had fallen over by the afternoon.

December 29, 2010

Disappointing November

Apparently we didn't have very much fun in November.  I didn't pick up my camera from the 1st until the 12th.  I had been sick since September and the first of November I ended up on my 5th antibiotic and a steroid.  The doctor told me it was croup even though I'm far older than the average age of croup sufferers.  (2-7 years old is the average).

After I got feeling better, physically, I still struggled to get on top of it emotionally.

The proof for me that November was a tough month can be found in the less than 300 personal/family pictures that I took. (February was the next lowest and it had 1100 personal/family pictures).

December 28, 2010

School Pictures

This year we didn't really do the school picture thing.  Jade had fallen the day before her pictures and had a big scab on her forehead.  Not to mention, I was not happy with the new photography packages and new photography our school decided to use.  So when Ivy's school did pictures we gave it a try and even got some of the two of them together.

But then those were really expensive and had a cheesy background.  So, instead, I just captured a couple of them and we called it good.

December 27, 2010

Top of the World - take 2

Last year we went up to the top of the world and it was a beautiful clear but really cold day.  This year we went up and it was beautiful and cold but not at all clear.  Plus there was a lot more snow than last time.

We really do love the customer appreciation days that Snowbird does.  I'm of course looking forward to going again next year.

This picture is my desktop image.  I absolutely love it.  It was Scott's idea to take the picture from low so that you couldn't see the line between the clouds and the mountain.  I think it turned out really fun.

After we came down from the mountain, we sat inside for a little while and worked on getting warm.  It took a while. :)

December 26, 2010

Vampires and Pirates

What more could a mom ask for?  Jade revisited her costume from a few years ago.  Ivy planned on being a pirate, ever since her cousin, Mini's birthday party.  The girls looked fantastic and had a blast on Halloween.

Happy Halloween

I really love Halloween.  I love everything about the holiday - the way we celebrate it.  The girls have a blast getting all made up and decked out in their costumes.  They love going trick or treating to gather as much candy as possible.  We enjoy the festivities at my mom and dad's house.  There is so much food and very fun stories told while the kids run around and play with Grandma's Halloween decorations.  Plus, it is the one time of year that most of the women in my family dress up as witches.

December 24, 2010

Crazy Hair Day 2010

As part of Jade's school spirit week, she had a "crazy hair" day.  We used one of my really cool bumpits that I just can't make work in my hair, to add some height to her ponytail.  And we colored her hair with food coloring.  Guess what - it didn't dye her hair.  Contrary to popular belief.  Plus it was very fun.

Ivy had to join in the fun, but with her dark hair, not much shows.

A ride in the dark for a treat

I love that Scott lives up to his word.  He promised Jade a bike ride to Walgreens for a treat.  They went, even though it was late when he got home from work and Jade got home from the gym.

Ivy and I drove down and met them for "treats" or strange candy of their choosing.

Jade had such a blast and it helped build her confidence about riding a bike.

December 23, 2010

Temple Square

Three are many beautiful and historic things about Utah, but we don’t tend to focus on the historical nor religious very often. We tend to spend more time enjoying the Outside beauties of Utah. 
We went and took the tour of the LDS Conference Center.
The conference center is breath-taking, and when you are on the top row of the top balcony, it is breath-taking in more ways than one.  The girls were absolutely amazed by the sky lights, the garden on top of the center and just how big the actual conference hall is.
After the tour we stopped and took a few pictures of the Salt Lake Temple.
Some days the girls forget that they are supposed to be there for one another, and they’ll argue and screech at one another.  Jade will tease Ivy and Ivy will scream just because she can.  But on this day, they did an awesome job of looking out for one another, helping each other and sharing adorable and sweet smiles with one another.   My favorite picture of the day was when Jade took Ivy’s hand and asked her to go by Jesus again so that He could see them again.

A Sunday in Salt Lake

One beautiful fall day in October, we left Utah County behind and went up north to explore a little bit of downtown Salt Lake.  We drove through the avenues and wondered through Memory Grove.  We took time to discuss the markers there for those that have fought and died for our freedom.  The girls were amazed at how young many of them were when they gave their lives for our country.

It was a beautiful afternoon and the girls were perfect.

December 22, 2010

On board the cold boat

Everyone bundled up and had a great time spending the last night of boating in 2010.

As if early October wasn't cold enough...

Despite thinking the first trip in October was going to be our last out to the lake for the year, we managed to get out there one more time.  We just went out with my parents and Scott and I both partook of the very cold water.  I actually started to feel more comfortable and purposefully pulled off some AIR.  Sure, it wasn't big air.  Of course my foot ached for trying, but it was a lot of fun doing it - on purpose.

Scott always gets amazing air and it is always fun to try and capture the perfect air photo.

December 16, 2010

More Hot Pot Pictures

Hot Pots - Good Warm Fun

Growing up in Utah County, there were many nights that the teenagers or college students would hike to the Diamond Fork Hot Pots or go to the hot springs in Midway.  I never actually went to the ones up Diamond Fork, but I did visit the ones in Midway.  Now that I’ve been to Diamond Fork, I’m looking forward to going again.

On our way up, the girls were talking to Grandma about doing a night hike again.  (As part of Camp Grandma, they did a night hike up by the Y).  They loved the stars, the moon, Harry’s shoes that blink.  Plus I think they enjoy the cooler temperature.
I said, “This hike is a pretty popular night hike.”
Ivy said, “This is NOT a night hike.  Night hikes are at night.  When it is dark.”
I’m pretty sure there was a bit of a “Duh” that followed that sentence.
The hike was gorgeous.  I think we made it up during the prime of the autumn leaves.  Plus the temperature was perfect.  Not real hot, but warm enough that the kids weren’t freezing when they got out of the hot springs.  Ivy hated the hot springs cause they were slimy.  Jade and the boys LOVED the hot springs and could have stayed in them for hours.
On our way down from our hike we passed many people headed up for an evening at the hot springs.  I was surprised at the amount of alcohol that was being carried up the mountain.  I felt sorry for the few families we passed that were heading up for some fun family time.
The hike was a little over 5 miles, with only a slight incline.  All four of the kids had an easy time.  It was a little long and they each took a few breaks here and there.  Fortunately there was a great spot for a break right after a bridge (about 3/4th's of the way through the hike).
It is definitely a hike worth doing for anyone in the area.  In fact, it is even worth a bit of a drive. 

Cattle Stampede

What a fun day we had.  We had so much fun we were even mentioned in the Salt Lake Tribune!  (My sister and my brother have been in the newspaper a lot in their life time.  I have not.  So, I’m very excited – even though it was just a mention and had to do with cattle).
We were headed up the canyon for a hike to some hot springs.  On our way we were stopped by the forest service and were notified that 600 head of cattle were right around the corner.  In June the cattle head up the mountain and mid-October they bring them all back down.  There were adorable baby cows and great big huge mommy and daddy cows.   I loved the sounds of the cows, and the watching them head straight toward the car with their big brown eyes.  I now understand the appeal of photographing cows and horses.  They really do have some serious personality.
The kids were so excited about it.  Ivy insisted that it was a “stampede” and that it was the “awesome-ist” part of the day.  She even told the reporter from the Tribune that it was so fantastic.
Here are a few pictures from our little bit of a road block…

December 15, 2010

Happy Birthday Grandpa Wayne

Kennecott Copper Mine

Whenever we are given the opportunity to explore something new in Utah, we try to take it.    So when we heard that Scott’s parents, aunt and grandpa were going to the Kennecott tour, we jumped at the chance.  The Kennecott mine is the largest of its kind.  It is visible from space and has produced more copper than any other mine.  The amazing thing about the mine is that the copper that is taken from the mine is such a low grade of copper and they have to go through quite the process to extract the copper.  During the process, they also refine silver and gold.
The trucks that move the rocks are SOOOOO big.  See the tire that is more than twice my height?  That’s from one of the trucks.  Pretty cool huh?  Know what else is cool?  Grandpa Great is having a lot of fun in his old age.  Earlier this year he played Twister with the girls and then this summer he went WATER SKIING!!!!!  He didn’t get up and blamed the life jacket and the wet suit.  He said that next time he’ll just wear the old white life belt.

December 14, 2010

In October the water is COLD

It was a warm day in October.  Warm is relative.  The water was absolutely COLD.  Many of us weathered the cold.  Jade and Madeline did some knee surfing (knee boarding on a surf board).  They loved it.

Ivy wasn't really into the idea of really cold water.

It was a really fun last day on the lake.

But, then pain happened.  Ivy was running and face planted.  She forgot to put her hands down and landed flat on her face.  Blood started gushing and her nose puffed up like a balloon.  So we rushed her to the hospital.  After all, she is my daughter and when hands don't stop our falls our noses get broken.

Luckily, Ivy is too young to break her nose.  So after an X-ray we were sent on our way with an ice pack.

December 13, 2010

Outing with Mom

Jade got invited by Scott to go spend the afternoon out on the boat, so Ivy and I got to go on a girly outing.  Ivy picked a pedicure so that is what we did.  She soaked her feet, as best as she could.  She giggled when they clipped and filed.  And of course she said yes please when the sweet lady that was doing her toes asked if she wanted flowers.  (Way to ask the 4 year old for the upgrade and not the mom).

While we were soaking our feet, I saw that they have a much cheaper polish only option for little ones.  I should have done that but oh well.  Ivy had a blast.

After our toes were beautiful, the two of us stopped by Roxberry and enjoyed a frozen yogurt.

December 12, 2010

Anne's Quilt

For Anne's birthday and cancer treatment, I made her a quilt.  It is my very favorite one so far.  I hope it keeps her very warm while her treatment is making her so cold.  And after she is cancer-free, I hope it becomes a family favorite to cuddle up in to watch movies.

I love you Anne and pray for you constantly.