Friday, August 31, 2012

Happy Birthday John!

We had a fun birthday weekend last week. John turned the big 48! I surprised him with tickets to go see  Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. It was playing up at Spring Mountain Ranch near Red Rock. It was a really nice night. We took our friends Jamie and Greg and we picked up a picnic dinner on the way. We ate on the grass and waited for the show to start. It was a different version of the play, a bit more rock and roll feel to it. We enjoyed it. I can't say it was great, but it was fun. It was a good way to start off the birthday weekend!

Saturday morning we got up early and drove up to Zion National Park. John's favorite place to go! He had been wanting to go all summer and we finally had a free Saturday to go. Since it was John's birthday we got the boys to go without complaining! We hiked a few hours into the narrows. We like that hike because you get wet and stay cool! The water was really low and very brown! Not sure why it was so muddy?? Maybe because there was a lot of rain that week?? All I know is Mitchell's white shirt is now cream colored! I tried bleaching it and everything... oh well. 

John enjoying the water!

The boys cooling off


I took self portraits why the boys swam. I only went n when i had to cross the river.
It was a little muddy for me!

so pretty!

Mitchell found a nice cave...

Happy Birthday Honey!

Tanner checking how deep it was for Mitch to jump


My honey

Tanner found a baby lizard

We hurried home and got showered and went to Kona Grill for dinner. Yum!!

so good!!
 After dinner he opened his presents!

a new football! 

Happy Birthday John!!!  I think he had a great day!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

On my mind...

It's Sunday evening, the house is quiet and I have a few things running through my mind...

1. Tanner starts high school tomorrow???!!! Did you read that right?? Yes, my baby starts high school tomorrow! I am freaking out a bit! (Not as bad as him! he just went to bed and is a little worried about the big day.) Wasn't he in kindergarten a few years ago?? CRAZY how fast time goes. I am excited for him. I know he will enjoy high school. He is in student council and they have been meeting for the last 2 weeks and he is loving it. They worked hard to get the school all ready for tomorrow and they are already working on homecoming things!
Pre-school graduation

2. Mitchell's mission papers are in! He should get his call this Thursday or next! Where will he go?? Who knows?? i am anxious to find out! So is he! I can't believe it's really happening. We have tried to prepare him for this step his whole life and now it is here! I am so excited for him!

He looks like a missionary!

3. What projects do I want to work on when school starts?? I haven't scrapbooked in ages, I would love to get my scrapbook room in order and get going on that again. And I have seen so many things on pinterest that I want to do! Most of them have to do with organizing my house!

4. Church was great today. It was ward conference and Bishop and President Schlauder gave great talks. They inspired me to be a better mom, help Tanner more with his Duty to God and inspired me to be a better missionary and a better person all around! I love our ward! I love my primary class! We are learning about Christ coming to the Americas right now so I showed half of "The Testaments" movie that the church put out a few years ago. I love that movie. I loved hearing one of my kids say she got chills when it showed the Savior healing someone! I love the gospel and love learning with my class and I especially love when the spirit touches them!

5. Cub scouts starts again this week. We took the summer off. I have missed my cute boys this summer!

6. Healthy eating has been on my mind. I came home from the beach in June and decided my life needed to change. I have been reading books and listening to podcasts that have been helping me change a few things in my life.  I have learned so much! I will do a whole post later on the books and things that have been helping me on my new journey. I feel healthier than I have in a long time. I wish the weight was coming off faster, but at least it going in the right direction. I have energy to exercise again and have been running my little 3 mile loop again.

7. My wonderful husband had a birthday yesterday! We had a great day! We went up to Zion and hiked the narrows. It was a blast. He has been wanting to go all summer and we finally got a free Saturday and got the boys to agree to go! We had a really nice time there! The boys even had fun! (I will do a whole post with pictures on it tomorrow!)

So, that's what is on my mind tonight as I sit in front of my computer and ponder about life.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Emerald City!

We decided last spring that it was time for a vacation up to Seattle. My hometown! We hadn't been back with the kids since we moved to Vegas 8 1/2 years ago. We wish Scotty and Ashley could have made it with us, but the newlyweds had to work. Tanner and I decided to go a week early since we didn't have jobs holding us down. We wanted to escape the 113 degree weather! So we flew up on the 20th of July and Mitchell and John met us on the 27th. We stayed till the 1st of August! fun times! I took tons of pictures and then I got all of my sisters pictures... so, this is a long post with many photos! Please don't feel obligated to read the entire post!

We found some cheap flights on Allegiant Airlines, but they flew into Bellingham. (2 hours north of Seattle) We found a shuttle that took us down to Seattle. We missed our shuttle by 10 minutes! So we had to wait 2 hours for the next shuttle! Bummer. It was raining and we couldn't access all the food, so we ordered pizza and had it delivered to the airport!! (it's a very small airport!)

Tanner and I on the shuttle
We Stayed at my sister Julie's house the first week. We pulled out the white board and made a schedule for the visit! We were busy everyday!! My parents were in town too! And Scott and Jenn came a few days later.

Teriyaki Madness at the waterfront in Kirkland! I miss good teriyaki! It urned out to be a beautiful day! We sat on the dock and soaked in the sun!
Tanner was stuck with us adults for a few days!

It was warm enough for Tanner to take a dip
Tanner couldn't resist the water! He jumped in his clothes!

That night we went out to Puyallup and had dinner at Mauri and Craig's house (Craig is my 1st cousin and Mauri is a friend since Jr. high). It was beautiful out and the kids had fun playing crochet! Grandpa won!

Dinner at the Crandall's!

On Sunday afternoon we went out to my brother Dave's house. He and Rebekah bought this house last fall. They got it on auction and had never been inside it when they got it! Luckily it was gorgeous inside and out!! We had so much fun there! We spent our 2nd week at their house. It is in a city called North Bend and it backs up on a beautiful river and is at the base of Mt. Si. 

My Aunt Lois and Uncle Dave were in town and we had a bbq
with them and my cousin Scott and his family.

I could handle this in my backyard!
The river outside Dave's back yard

Absolutely beautiful! I could have spent the whole week here! Except for the mosquitos! 

Tanner exploring

hanging in the hammock

Tanner thought the slugs were pretty cool! I forgot that they are all over! 
Uncle Dave got the BB guns out

Uncle Dave
The view of Mt. Si when the sun is setting. The mountains would turn pink! So pretty!

On Monday we went to the Ballard Locks. It's where boats can go from the Puget Sound to Lake Union and then into Lake Washington. 

Cute cousins! 

Andrew, Tanner, Tiffany and Natalie
Watching the boats...

There are art pieces all over the city! 

Tanner had fun with his cousins!

My dad getting pictures of the salmon going up the fish latter.

After the locks we went to the troll under a bridge! Another piece of art in the city! Can you see the bug car in his hand? It's real!

Pretty cool!
Seattle had a kids show on PBS when I was little called JP Patches. The guy died why I was there and we stopped at his statue.

Then we went to Gassworks park on Lake Union.
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Lake Union

The old gas pipes

Vincent took Tanner longboarding in an old parking garage. Tanner LOVED it! No cars to deal with! 

Tanner and Vincent

I went to dinner my my friend Jill. It was great to catch up with her!

Scott and Jenn came in on Wednesday and we went straight to the zoo! Seattle has a great zoo!

Afton, Andrew, Tanner and Jack

love this shot my dad got of the bear!

This was Tanner's favorite part. You could buy little food sticks and the birds would land on you to eat them! This one surprised him!

This one would not leave Scott!
Tanner and his buddy Jack! They were matching!


One of Tanners favorite shows is Man vs. Food. They filmed an episode at this burger place, so Tanner had to go! It was really good! We had never been there before.

Enjoying his burger


Thursday was a beautiful day so we went to to Chism Park on Lake washington for half the day and then out to Dave's river for the rest of the day.

Some little boys at the park had fish nets and our boys helped them catch a whole bunch of little fish.

Look at all of them!
Grandpa and Tanner looking for the schools of fish! 

Tanner fishing (he and I went out on the river one night fishing and never caught a thing!)

Silly picture of me getting ready to swim some laps!

Out at the river! It was really shallow and perfect for floating in a tube.
So fun!

Me trying to stay on the air mattress!
Tanner going down the little rapids but a tree was in the way! 

Uncle Dave cam home and let Tanner chop down the tree! He loved it!

Grandpa spent all day every day out fishing! Caught lots of fish!
Everyone helping with the tree removal. They finally got it and we had a great tubing spot!

On Friday we went up to Deception Pass. About 2 hours north of Seattle. John and Mitchell were flying into Bellingham that day, so they met us there when they got in. Deception pass is on Puget Sound and there are little tide pools all over! Kids caught crabs and saw all kinds of sea life!

Afton catching some crabs

John and Mitchell finally arrived! Jack was excited to see his Mitchooo.

They are so cute together!

It's so pretty there!

Happy to have my honey there!

The girls

The boys had a great time climbing this tree! 
Cute boys!!

Scott's beautiful family!

Cute Jack. He had tons of slivers in his hands from this fence!
So, the sun came out and the boys decided to get their suits on and swim out to a little island. The water temperature ins in the 50's! Freezing!!! Really stupid! But they did it and survived!
Tanner not sure if he should stay in

Mitchell dove right in

John decided to go with them... so cold!

They made it! 

My sister Cindy was in town for a few days too! So fun.

Deception Pass bridge. It connects Whidby Island to the mainland. It's a beautiful bridge you can walk over and look down to see all the currents in the water. For some reason this passage of water has crazy currents. 
My handsome boys!

Boys spitting down and counting how long it takes. It was really high!!

a beautiful view from the bridge!

That night all the adults went to the Bellevue Arts and Craft Fair. It was always a summer highlight growing up! I was happy we got to go!
getting some yummy dinner!

Big group of us!! (Mom was in a wheelchair because her feet bother her when she walks a lot. Nothing wrong!)
Yummy dinner!

My cute mom and dad!

We spent Saturday on the river! it was great fun! 
John and Rebekah trying out the canoe

Tanner chilling on the river

The rapids were really fun!!
Tanner loved going down!

John heading down!
Dave lives real close to Snoqualmie falls. We went over there for a little bit. SO pretty!

Jack playing a game on Mitchell's phone

The boys helping Tiffany make a craft to take to girls camp!

Tiffany making sure the boys make it right!

Mitchell helping out
Sunday afternoon we invited a bunch of cousins out for a BBQ. It was so fun. The kids set up a badminton court and had a big tournament! Mitchell and Vincent won! 

Brian, Craig, Mauri, Denene, Dave, John, Doug, Dorene and my dad

John and Scott were a team. they came in 2nd.

My dad and his sister Dorene

John giving Jack a ride...

He played with Jack on his back!

Grandpa working on his fishing poles! A common sight!

Denene, Scott and Craig cheering on the game.

Catching up with cousins
The bugs were eating us alive so we came in!

Pretty hard to get mad at this face when she picked all the fucia flowers off!

We went downtown Seattle on Monday. We had a great day! 

Strong Tanner!

My boys!
First stop, Pike Place Market

Very talented!

The boys loved watching the musician!
Vincent, Tanner, Mitchell, Julie, Tiffany, Me, John, Andrew, Natalie and Dave
Lunch on the pier 

Tanner with a tummy ache because he drank 3 glasses of Mountain Dew before his food was ready!

Next stop, the new ferris wheel on the pier. It was really fun!!

Playing their game...

waiting in line
On the Ferris Wheel! 
Jenn,Julie, Vincent, Andrew, Mom, Dad, Scott and Jack
Tiffany, Mitch, John, Me, Tanner, Natalie, Rebekah and David

John and I

It was fun to go over the water!

My boys!

The Westra's

We stopped and had the cartoonist draw the boys! We were going to have him do them together and he begged to do them separate because he said Tanner needed his own page with all the hair! He was great!

I love how they turned out!! They look just like them!

Tanner on the pig at Pike Place

There is a new gum wall below the market. It was really gross!

Mitch got a little too close!

Tanner leaving his mark!

On Tuesday we went back to Seattle and went on the Duck tour of the city. This company has these old boat/jeep's that go on the water and the land! They used these vehicle's in WW2. 

We went with Julie and her boys. 

I should have never of bought the boys quackers! They drove us crazy!!

Out on Lake Union

The boys taking in the sights

Another duck tour boat

The quackers!
Seattle is a very green city! Recycling everywhere! Compost garbage cans for the food, recycling for dishes and very little goes in the garbage cans! We need to be better!

We took the monorail over to the space needle.  

The sun came out after lunch so we went over to the University of Washington and went canoeing in Lake Washington. It is so beautiful!! There is an arboretum and it is gorgeous! You canoe under the bridge and freeway ramps and then it's all green with lily pads, ducks and beautiful views!

I remember doing this as a kid. There are a few old bridges that you can jump off! So fun!

My boys thinking about it!

Go Mitchell!



Isn't it beautiful!!

Our last night... so sad. We went to dinner at one of our favorite mexican restaurants! 

We had an amazing trip! Loved seeing family! Loved seeing green again! Wished we had more time to visit more friends. I can't wait to go again!!