Wednesday, July 31, 2013

JUNE (also known as MEGA post)

The girls had their end of the year dance recital and loved every minute of it.  It was especially sweet watching them be in the same dance studio and participating in this right of passage together. 

Summer is here!!!!  Need I say more?

When my parents went to Africa they connected us with the sweetest young man named Jote.  He lives in a boy's orphanage down in Ethiopia.  He has Facebook and we've really enjoyed sharing a connection with him.  He calls Emma and Lydia his little sisters.  We were soooooo very touched when he sent the girls a package all the way from Africa!!!  It had this hat, scarf, necklaces and sandals.  Truly, I can't bare to think of the sacrifice it must have been for him to send something to these little girls.  It really means so much to all of us. Here is Emma posing it up....this girl of mine....I'm worried!!!

 Annie and I took the kids on an all day adventure to the Dinosaur Park and also Heber and Park City.  It was a looooooooooong but eventful day!

Before the heat got to hot I enjoyed beautiful hikes in the mountains right behind our house.  This hike below entails me, Lee, a wooden palette, and an angry tractor driver. 

Jessica came home for a week from her Vivint summer and we enjoyed seeing her as much as we could. 

With Ryan working during the days I have to take the girls with me when I work for Uncle Mike.  A special thanks to Lee and Cam for being so good to play with these girls and be so good to them. 

Many days spent at Logan swimming pool. 

What can I say about these two cousins?  Emma and Jaken.  They warm my heart.  The truly are best friends.  He'll be the brother she'll never have, and he'll probably be nicer to her than a brother ever would've been.  

We spend a lot of our time up at my parents....gee....I wonder why!

Look how OLD Lydia is getting!!!  I can't believe she is my BABY!!

Ryan spent a few days helping my dad put in this swimming pool....
 Here is the end result
 Above photo: Emma continues to get hurt.  Bless her heart.
Below: Lydia thought this poster at Buffalo wild wings was the funniest thing she had ever seen.  That's fluffy the pig she's holding, she usually comes everywhere with us.  I love that pig as much as she does.
 Sooooo.....this is a little wedding that I just had to crash.  My aunt got an invitation to the reception and the invitation itself was to die for!  So I knew that the reception would be amazing.  I just love a good party.  My aunt couldn't attend, so Lydia and I went and oooed and awwwed, and also left with some cotton candy.  There's a fair chance that crashing weddings might be my new thing.

We got out the birthday tree.  We set it up and decorate it.  Then it's like an advent calendar.  Every day leading up to the birthday you get to hang one candy ornament.  When all the ornaments are hung then it's your birthday!!  I've found it's a great way to help the little girls understand the concept of time.

Lydia's birthday will be a post all of it's own, but here is a photo from her birthday shoot.

The girls LOOOOOOOOOOVE to car dance!  Hmmmm, I wonder where they get it from. 

Watching a video that Jaken sent.  They were tickled that he specifically said hi to them. 

This darling sister of mine came for a visit!  It's always a great week when the Lakes come to town. 

Emma spent the entire week up at my parents with all the cousins.  She was in heaven!  Yep, that's a black bunny Camdyn is holding like a baby. 

One day we had a Land I Love Party.  We had themed foods, Patriotic songs,  and then we all went around and shared a song, poem or story about American History.  It's a family tradition and very important to instill patriotism into this generation, it seems that society isn't going to be doing that anymore.

We had a party at Aunt Lee's one night, complete with yummy food, games, and visiting. 

 Another day we all went to Bear Lake.  There is no description necessary for the joys of Bear Lake.

Annie and Papa always did a great job of entertaining the kids.  Hikes, adventures, camping, the works!

 This awesome day we went to Bountiful to have a BBQ at the Call's pool.  The water slide, grilling area, and overall ambiance just make for the perfect day!

 We washed it down with a beautiful sunset.  I know these two photos are similar, but I couldn't pick which one I liked best.

 The last of the Romney family was married.  I adore these new member to the family.  Chelsea is THE most beautiful bride I have ever seen. It was great attending their reception.  I believe that I spoke to every single Romney family member, which was great since I hardly get to see them on anything more than Instagram.  Below is a photo of us with the Smith cousins.  Too bad that some people's eyes are nearly closed, mouths open, heads turned, but it's the only photo I got and I just love these cousins so I had to post it.

On Stacey's last night everyone went up to my parent's for one last night of games and cackling. 
 I truly adore my sister Stacey.  She has been so generous and kind to me ever since I was a little girl.  She has NEVER once done a single thing that is worthy of an apology.  THAT is amazing.  She is a very large reason that I needed to make sure that I had at least two girls so that they could have the joy of a sister.
 Lydia continued the month as the little cheeser she is.  She loves her new minnie mouse pajamas from Aunt Lee and her math from Aunt Carol.

At the end of the month my mom and I headed to the Gateway to check out the chalk arts festival.  It did NOT disappoint. 

 What a GREAT month this has been!!!  Life in Utah is truly amazing.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Sisters Retreat- Cannon Beach

 We had an amazing sisters trip for the weekend out to Cannon Beach.  My mom put this whole party together and I am so thankful for her intuition that it's exactly what we needed.  We all met up at Stacey's house and then drove the 2.5 hours out to the coast.  On the drive down Stacey and Sara got their nap in and then we all did some car yoga, which is much harder than it sounds.

 We stopped at Camp 18 and had THE best clam chowder I have ever tasted.
 We also stopped along the way to do a letter boxing adventure that Jamie introduced us too.  I am VERY excited to do this with my kids too.  This photo below is of us doing our cousin Tracey's famous pose.
 We checked in to our beautiful condo.  My mom tricked us into thinking we were staying in a dumpy place, and lo and behold, Daddy Warbucks takes care of his girls :)

 We had MANY, MANY walks along the beach.  Some days were nicer than others, but come rain or shine, we were on that stretch of sand.
 I promised Emma I would find her a sand dollar, it's actually not that easy to do, so I was thrilled when I did in fact find an unbroken dollar.

We also did my FAVORITE hike out to Oswald State Park.  
 You go through tree tunnels, across bridges, and end up out on a very narrow cliff above a punch bowl ocean cavern.

 The cliff is rather dangerous, and my dad would have been beside himself to see us out there, but we had to get some good photos :)

 We had many walks into town for shopping, doughnuts, the candy store, and of course Pizza A Fetta.

 The absolute highlight for me was checking off a bucket list goal....riding cruiser bikes along the coast. Of course it rained the entire ride, but thanks to my NW sisters, they encouraged me to not let the rain ruin my goals and to just bike on as though it were a beautiful clear day.  It was very hard to see through the rain, and we were soaked to the bone.  However, I was ear to ear smiles and I'm so thankful for these sissies who braved the weather just for me.

Every meal we ate was absolutely amazing.  We were the only table in the restaurant without a glass of wine in front of us and yet we were still the loudest.  The five of us together have the best chemistry. 

We had THE best time together.  I can't even remember the last time I laughed so loud, and for so long, and pretty much every second.  A big special thanks to my parents for making this trip possible.  A thanks to my husband for having a great attitude about staying home with our girls.  I hope girls trips come along more often, they're so good for the soul.