Wednesday, July 31, 2013

One is Silver and the Other's Gold

I still remember the first Sunday we went to Church after moving to California.  I went to Relief Society and I remember seeing another new mom holding a little baby on her lap...her fifth boy.  I only had Joshua at the time.  Looking back I was SO young!  She was so young!  Joshua is older than her oldest was then.  So much has changed.  We hit it off right away and bonded over being new and finding our way around a different town that was unlike where either of us had come from. That mom,  Lisa, showed me a lot of the ropes of being a new, young mother...especially a mother to a lot of boys!  She also taught me a lot about cooking, family routines and traditions, decorating, PAINTING, being a wife, and dealing with hard times.  I have so many memories from those first few years in town.  

Joshua (in the middle) was right between her Grant and Neal in age. These three had lots of fun together and got into plenty of mischief too.  

Lisa's oldest son, Blake, was always such a great kid and would take an interest in my "little" kids.  Joshua thought riding around on Blake's electric scooter was pretty much the most exciting thing around.  (Yes, that is Max in the picture.  He was such a naughty dog and probably followed us over to their house.)

As my kids have gotten older I have often thought of these makes me realize how fast they all grow up!  

Joshua can't figure out why we dressed him so dorky...he doesn't believe us that he was always on the cutting edge!  :) Fashion may have changed, but the razor's in the background haven't change a bit!  

As the kids got older we both purchased new homes in different areas and our paths didn't cross as much.  However, we still got together on special occasions.  Our last Christmas in California we went to their home for Christmas Eve.  We did all the same things I grew up doing and it felt just like being with family!  They were so kind to include us!

Here are my four boys with Grant and Neal again.  (At this point I now also had five kids!)

See...I told you we fit right in.  Here is the "real" picture!  Ha ha

We acted out the Story of Christ's birth from the Bible.  Annie was baby Jesus. 

 James, Grant, and Neal...some very wise men indeed. 

  Both families take our Nativity very seriously....

I had to throw in this picture of James.  It cracks me up. 

And Annie, of course! 

In less than a year after these Christmas pictures were taken, both of our families moved from California.  We pretty much moved IN to that town together and LEFT about the same time.  Our family moved to Idaho and they were off to Washington DC.

 Soooo.... when a beautiful wedding invitation came in the mail a couple months ago from Sandy, Utah I wondered who it was for.  Upon opening it I quickly recognized their oldest son, Blake.   I was so happy to see the festivities were being held in UTAH!  I knew I had to make the trip.   I had planned to go down for a couple days but Ryan ended up being out of town.  Joshua was in Washington DC (go figure) and  I just decided to drive straight there, go to the reception, and drive home.  I was SO glad I did!

You have to take the fanicular up the mountainside to get to the hotel where the reception was being held.  We had taken the kids up on it for fun last fall and so when they realized they could STAY at the hotel for the party they were pretty excited.  



Luke (Beautiful Deer Valley in the background!) 


I was really crossing my fingers that the kids would be on best behavior.  Bringing the five youngest to a wedding, by myself, could have been a disaster for sure.  Luckily they were all great and had a blast! 

Here is Reid on the dance floor with Annie!  They were all  SO sweet and gracious and just took us right in, including us in all the fun and festivities.  (Love that Reid!  And HE is single....anyone?)  

 Reunion!  My hair looks dreadful in all these pictures.  Apparently, I was having a bad hair day.  (Even with short hair, it can happen.)  I won't let it stop me from posting pictures though!  Too rare of an event!  When we used to go to the Oakland Temple together I remember we would get asked if we were sisters. I think I can see it in this picture!  

Lisa having a reunion with another dear friend. They look great, huh!? 

I was DELIGHTED when we ran into another one of my favorite families in the world that we knew from our years in California.  These guys lived right down the street and in those few years we sure had a lot of fun.  (They have since moved away as well.)

How gorgeous is Blake's bride!?  This is the "boy" that was up on that scooter driving Joshua around.  All grown up and deserves all the happiness in the world!  He is an amazing guy! I kinda snuck in when the photographer was doing her thing and I love that I caught Blake looking at me and my little old camera! They are seriously such a beautiful couple! 

 The fun to see a new sister in the mix!  

I have to say, not only was the reception beautiful, but it wins top honors for the most "fun" reception I think I have been to in a LONG time.  There was a live band, and my kids had such a blast doing their moves on the dance floor. 

Us adults did what we always have done, talk, talk.  

I think just about everyone took a turn on the dance floor.  I was trying to get a picture of the bride and groom in there dancing.  They were so cute. 

And here you can see... the groom is still the sweet boy he was all those years ago.  He took time out to dance with Sophie!  (And Sophie is pretty shy...but I think she was smitten!)

Annie and Sophie with Blake.  Annie wasn't just smitten.  She was openly in love, with Blake and Reid.  

Everyone was so gracious and inclusive.  Even the mother-of-the-bride got to know the boys on the dance floor! 

My pictures from the night are all terrible lighting!  I wish I had done a better job at capturing all the flowers here.  They were amazing! 

Not much better, but you get the idea. 

Luke was getting really into it.  I didn't want him to see me taking pictures! 

Here is the old gang...haven't aged a bit, have we!?  (Don't answer that one.)

Like I said, making the drive was SO worth it.  I am so glad I went.  It was so great to see old friends.  We all picked up right where we left off.  It was such a neat night and we were so glad we could share a small portion of their happy day with them.  It brought back so many memories ! 

Make new friends, 
But keep the old, 
One is silver,
And the other's gold.  

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Also Delayed

I am sitting at the airport right now reading blogs and passing time because we missed our flight back home.  The first blog I pulled up was Nie Nie's Delayed.  I should not wish ANYONE to have to sit in the airport all day, but it is nice to know on this Pioneer Day I am not alone sitting in an airport.

We left for the Airport that is supposed to be 30 minutes away at 6:15am.  Somehow through a series of   unfortunate events (pretty much everything possible going wrong) we arrived at the Dallas Airport with only 45 minutes until our flight and were told there was no way we could get on the flight since we had to check in our suitcase.

Tears.  Lots of tears.  I should not have bothered putting on mascara and and maybe we would have made our flight, because I for sure don't have it on now.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Father's Day

Ryan was still in California for Father's Day so I did a tribute to him back here.  Joshua was also still in DC.  The rest of us spent the afternoon at my Dad's house celebrating. It was a lovely afternoon. 

James wrapped this gift for Grandpa all by himself.  I was so happy to discover his wrapping skills because since then I have been able to send him on an errand to wrap for me several times.  It is so handy!

Hugs for Grandpa! 

All those gifts and cards must have worn Grandpa out! Not David and Alexis though. 

Alexis and James

James again...

We headed home after lots of good food and conversation.  I took Sophie on a drive in hopes that she would quickly fall asleep.  I snapped the sunset along the way.  My pictures never seem to give it justice. 

I head back home from Texas in five short hours!  I can't wait to see the kids and be home!  I wish I could just click my ruby slippers and be home right now.  I will not complain though...a plane ride is not too bad. (Except that I hate flying.)  XOXO

Summer Random Shots

Okay, seriously ridiculous, but first a couple last shots of our trip to the big St George.  

Pretty much the top moment of the trip was when I left the mall in shame after THREE diaper changes.  Um, ya, there was no way to salvage any part of her outfit or the stroller at that point.  I had to walk back through the Food Court with naked toddler in toe.  This was the start of a couple bad days of the runs for Sophie Rose. 

Luckily it didn't ruin the entire trip and she did manage to squeeze in some fun at the pool!

I just had to take a picture of these bunk beds that our friends custom made (themselves) for their grandkids.  The bottom beds are all doubles.  This room was awesome.  

We just had to go to the Brick Oven for dinner while in Utah.  

I was so happy that I was able to meet my goddaughter (right, Danielle?) Eva.  She was such a sweet baby and so, so cute. (Not to mention she had a serious cheek situation going on.)

I LOVE the mountains in Utah.  I loved looking at these mountains for five years while living in Provo.  When I go back I am always re-amazed at how HUGE they are.  Just gorgeous. (I am especially loving them as I write this from Texas....where there ain't no mountains.)

And the last hour of any trip always seems to look about like this...
Such a REAL snap shot.  I tittled it, "And she has officially lost it..."  I noticed the picture of Joshua shooting himself AFTER I posted it on instagram.  

I took this picture when I got home.  This bush had just bloomed and the flowers were so full and beautiful.  I think everything looks more beautiful when you come home from vacation.  

My favorite tree. 

We got home and wham-bam, it was time to send Joshua off on a ten day trip to Washington DC. He left in the middle of the night practically.

I thought it was so cute that Isabelle and Emmaline came to the school to bid them farewell.  Little Isabelle was just as excited about the trip as they were. 

Here's the crew....(the Idaho Crew, the Arizona cousins joined up with them in DC.)  These guys earned their own money to pay for the trip and hopefully it will be an experience they never forget.  

Joshua saying goodbye.  The couple days before we were getting stuff worked out at the bank for him, shopping for clothes, packing, running all over.  It felt like we were sending him off on his mission already.  It was sad saying goodbye and gave me a TINY glimpse into what it will be like in FOUR short years from now.  It makes me sad even thinking about it.  

We didn't stay sad for long.  We knew he was having a blast so while mom cleaned and unpacked the girls caught up with the neighbors.  Keisha was so kind as to do their make up for them.  It kept them quiet for so long, I didn't even mind! 

We also went to the grand Rigby Lake with some friends and had a picnic.  So tasty. 

But the MOST exciting thing we did was go to this demolition derby/figure 8 races.  I had no idea what to expect when we were invited, but we were so glad we went.  It was so fun seeing the cars crash and burn as the sun set on the Rigby Fairgrounds. 

As you started rooting for your favorite cars, it became even more exciting. 

Here's friends Daisy and Addie with Luke and Michael.  The kids just loved watching.  

I told Ryan this is what we need to do with our minivan at some point.  

Since we had such an "Idaho" day, I figured I should create me some Idaho Hair to go along with our fun.  My hair was seriously made to be big. This is just a little curling iron action and a comb.  I didn't even have to use product.  Why can't this be the style?  Ryan didn't appreciate it so much and I think I scared the kids.  

I love that you can count on some yummy Fat Boys at every youth fireside around here.  (Fat Boy's are the name of a deliciously fat ice cream sandwich.)  I didn't want anyone thinking I was referring to our favorite neighbor, Randy, pictured here, when I said Fat Boy. 

And then Ryan was off to California for a business trip.  He was gone a couple weeks and we are always sad to see him go! 

Safe travels, Dad!  Love you!

When Dad is gone in the summer time, sometimes our menu reads like this:
Monday Night Dinner:  Snow Cone Shack
Tuesday Night: Ice Cream

You get the picture.  Here is Sophie enjoying some of her healthy dinner. 

I couldn't get the air working while he was gone and of course we had a crazy heat wave that week.  The house pretty much held at 87F.  Too hot for me! 

The boys went fishing with Grandpa and caught some seriously huge fish.  I must post the picture that Grandpa took of them on the river.  It is so much better.  

I sure miss all these kids...(I am writing this while in Texas away from them.)  Love you guys!

I am just so grateful that Sophie knows how to use a bow and arrow if needed.  (Even if it is made of PVC pipe.) You can always count on various weapons laying around throughout the house at all times. 

I was able to attend ward temple night while Ryan was away and when I came out of the temple, this is what it looked like.  Amazing. 

Idaho is so beautiful in the summer! Here it is about 930pm with the sun finally setting. 

I love to see the temple!  

And that is a wrap!