Saturday, July 31, 2010

Herr Molly

Molly likes to color. On herself. On my bathtub. And mostly on herself. On this day she ended up looking a little comradish.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Pioneer Day

On Pioneer Day we headed off to where it all began! We went into Emigration Canyon and stopped at Ruth's Diner. See the picture of Ruth on the menu?! Then we went to This Is The Place State Park. This was the second time we have been there and this time we went to the children's play area. Molly liked the cabin with the rocking chair.
We took the train with Garry's brother, Jeremy, his wife, Meg, and little Cameron. It was HOT and we felt bad for our guide.
Then the kids tried out the little train. Choo! Choo!
The girls found some gold and traded it in for taffy.
Molly was EXHAUSTED and fell asleep on the train ride.

Happy Pioneer Day!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Oh! I Forgot!

I forgot my favorite part of taking Emma to meet her teacher yesterday! We were walking into the school, and I was holding her hand. I told her that I remembered going into my school for the first time, I was holding my Mom's hand, just like we were.

She asked me, "Were you nervous, too, Mommy? Because I'm a little nervous."

It was so adorable, I teared up. Man, I love that kid.

Meet Your Teacher!

Garry and I took Emma to meet her Kindergarten teacher at Eastlake Elementary. She has been looking forward to going back to school since we left Maryland. I am so excited for her to be able to go back; she has missed it so much!
Her teacher is Mrs. Rowberry. This is her first year at Eastlake. She previously taught at Saratoga Springs. She seems very nice, and she did a 30 minute evaluation with Emma and she said Emma is right on track!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Home Improvements

When we moved into the Esperanza house, we found a bunch of stuff in the garage. Included were two barstools from the game room. They were covered in a sports theme fabric and were pretty attrocious. But, I recovered them with a fake brown leather (wipe friendly!) that I found at JoAnn's for $3. Hooray!Molly likes them!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

The Best Birthday Present Ever

At my surprise party Garry gave me the best birthday present ever. It's a 30" x 40" picture, double-signed by the author because it's supposed to be a limited release. We hung it up in the stairwell, and I LOVE it. Thank you, Garry!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Uncle Tom's Trail!

Our last stop in Yellowstone National Park was Yellowstone Falls and Uncle Tom's Trail. Taking three kids, the oldest being 5 years old, down this trail was not our best parental decision and other people on the trail looked at us like we were INSANE.

The trail drops fast and consists on 328 stairs. I had Emma walk in front of me, yelling at her to hold the hand rail the entire time (but have fun, too, darn it!) because on the other side of the handrail was, well, the huge waterfall. I held onto Macey's hand and Garry kept Molly in a backpck. But we made it down (and back up!) and what a view!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Old Faithful. . .Not So Faithful

Many, many years ago, when I was young, we'd go to Yellowstone National Park and see Old Faithful. We'd go to the lodge, see the time the geyser was expected to go off, find an area on the park bench, and watch it go off. . .like clockwork. . .Old Faithful.

It's different. It only goes off every 90-100 minutes, instead of 50-60, and when we waited to see it, we really waited. And waited. It was running really late. I thought, "well, how interesting to be here on the day Old Faithful does not go off," but eventually it did.

It's interesting because so many buildings and campsites and lodges have been built up around Old Faithful. It's a huge compound, and I wonder what they will do when Old Faithful stops.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

My Favorite Picture

On Friday we took the girls to Yellowstone National Park. We have not been there since Emma was a little baby and this was only Garry's second time to the Park. We stopped first at the Painted Pots and walked along the path to see all of the steaming pools and the funky colors.

We stopped here to take a picture. It was going okay until Macey got tired of squinting in the sun and Molly kicked Emma in the head. It's just like our family -- we would like for it to be cute and perfect 100% of the time, but real life just gets in the way. . .

Monday, July 19, 2010


On July 8th we went with my parents and my sister and her family to West Yellowstone. We were going to see Beauty & the Beast. A huge THANK YOU to my parents for watching Molly so we could see the show! Before we went to see Belle, we stopped and ate some ice cream before dinner. We had dessert first in honor of Aunt Lois.
The ice cream was homemade but my Mom did not like it as much as "Nation's Best".

My sister and niece and I thought it was fine, though.

Everytime we go to the Playmill in West Yellowstone it is around my birthday. I have been sung to on this stage more times than I can count. It was fun when I was 12, but now I'm not. . .Yes, in this picture this total stranger is singing to me and holding my hand. This was big time excitement when I was 17. . .
The girls loved, loved, loved the play. Before the show started the cast was helping everyone sit and Macey worked up all of her courage to yell, "Hi, Belle!" She was really sweet and stopped and talked to her.
During an intense moment of the play, Macey tapped my sister's shoulder and said, "It's okay, he turns into a Prince!"

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Walking Down Memory Lane

Garry came to "Grandpa Camp" on Wednesday night and on Thursday we headed up north to Island Park. We stopped for lunch at my parent's cabin. The girls LOVED the porch swing. After lunch we took the traditional walk to the reservoir. Here are Garry and my Mom and Molly at the reservoir.
Here's a picture of our whole dusty and hot crew!
And Emma with Grandma.
I took this walk so often when I was young. It was wonderful to share it with my kids and Garry.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

How To Train Your Dragon

Molly made in through a movie! Yahoo! When she was a little, little baby, we took her to The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. We had to walk back and forth with her in the back; she just did not want us to sit down.
A few months ago I took her to Princess & The Frog. It was a disaster!! She watched maybe five minutes and we spent the rest of the time in the lobby.
But last week all of the cousins went to How To Train Your Dragon. We took up a whole row and so she just walked back and forth, back and forth, stopping for candy, popcorn, hugs, and whatever else her cousins and aunts wanted to give her along the way.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Nation's Best?

Reed's Dairy in Idaho Falls boasts that it serves the "Nation's Best" ice cream. Not sure who voted or how it was chosen, but it is pretty good and is a "must-stop" whenever we visit in the summer.
I have a million pictures of Molly that look just like this. She likes ice cream. On this day she tried out the bubble gum flavor.

Emma likes ice cream, but she's not a fan of the cones. She'll eat down and then pretty much stop.

Is this summer perfection or what? So happy! So covered in chocolate. . .

At the dairy, they also display their baby animals. Molly ran up to me and said "Mama! Mama! Baby Moo Moo!"

Here's Macey, Emma, Chloe, Scarlet and Kevin checking out the baby horses and the goats.

Here's Zach with another baby cow. Zach LOVES LOVES Reed's Dairy.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Grandpa Camp!

On Tuesday and Wednesday night the girls slept out at "Grandpa Camp".
My parents have 1.8 acres outside of Idaho Falls, and some of it is just pasture. My dad made a path through the pasture and in a ring of trees in the back created a camp -- just a clearing big enough for two large tents and a few chairs and a fire pit.
Tuesday night we roasted marshmellows, my sisters recited the Creanation of Sam McGee, and then the kids got ready for Grandpa Camp! There was a girl's tent and a noisy, noisy boy's tent. My sister was kind enough to sleep out with the girls in the girl's tent and Molly and I stayed indoors.
Macey made it until 11 the first night but the second night stayed out with the girls. She was very proud of herself. Emma loved all of it.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

I've Got Lots More!

While we were in Idaho my sisters took their older kids to the temple. So I took the little(r) kids to the park down the street. When I grew up outside of Idaho Falls the nearest park was. . .was. . .well, there was not one. But now a mile from my parent's house is a huge set of soccer fields and a fun little playground. Man, if it had been there 20 years ago I think my whole life would have been changed ;) Molly had fun cheesing for the camera and eating potato chips.
Chloe and Emma took a break to hang out on the bench with me.

Claire was a good sport hanging out with everyone and helping Molly on the slides.

I'm not sure what Macey is doing here. . .surrendering to the inevitability of Mom's camera and another blog post, I am sure.
While they were at the park, they were playing a game where my nephew would "charge" the kids to go down a certain slide. They had to pretend to pay him by smacking his hand. This drove Chloe NUTS as she insisted it was a free country and a free park! But Macey played along. She smacked his hand and when he said "thank you!" she said, "no problem, I've got lots more!"

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Car Ride!

Last Monday I drove the girls to Grandpa Camp! The drive to Idaho Falls is only 3 1/2 hours, and the girls generally travel well, but to ensure success, I started driving during Molly's nap and hoped that she would sleep and sleep most of the way.
She slept all of 40 minutes (sigh). But, she didn't cry. She just looked out the window during the trip. At one point I turned around and she had her arms behind her head like the picture, just kicking it.

Monday, July 12, 2010


After the movie, Steph & I went back home, and I found that Garry had planned a SURPRISE birthday party for me. I came home to a family room full of family and friends. For a treat, Garry prepared all of my favorite foods: chocolates, skittles, egg rolls, and a huge shrimp tray. I'm sure everyone wished that my favorite food was steak, but they were good sports about it.
And cherries! And rootbeer! And chocolate covered cherries!
Garry also made two chocolate pudding cakes -- my favorite.

Miss Rory was a big hit at the party. Molly is so moody and generally likes only a few people. My family was enchanted by an easy-going baby girl.
Garry's grandparents also came for the surprise. It was a great afternoon, and I really appreciate all of the time and effort Garry put into making it special.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Knight & Day

Stephanie was kind enough to move to Utah a few days before my birthday so that we could carry on our tradition of going to the movies for our birthdays! I think that this year was our third or fourth year of going.
We went to see Knight & Day. I liked it. Tom Cruise was really funny in this role. I hate movies where they shoot and shoot and miss and miss and waste a whole lot of time. Tom Cruise shot and hit. It was nice.
Thanks for the movie, Steph!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Birthday Food!

This birthday will forever go down as the birthday of food! Wow, I started off with a coffee cake from a recipe I found online. The review of the recipe suggesting DOUBLING the amount of sugar, and I thought, hey, it's my birthday, why not? So, 12 TABLESPOONS later. . .coffee cake bliss.

My sister Cindy came up from Provo with my niece, Courtney. Courtney watched all the girls so I could go to Kneaders with my sisters for lunch. Thanks, Court! I had a fabulous chicken sandwich. Yum. And then at night we got a babysitter and met my sister and brother-in-law at a Japanese Steakhouse for dinner. Holy cow, could I have eaten more this day?

Thursday, July 1, 2010

On this. . .the date of my birth. . .

So on this, the date of my birth, I celebrate my Mom as all good daughters should. When I was born, my Mom had a 7, 8, 10, 12, 14 & 16 year old. Can you imagine starting all over again when you thought you were halfway done? Not just done with diapers but done, DONE?

She was very careful financially when I was growing up. I did not have a million toys or cable or trendy clothes or shoes. She scraped and saved and has helped so generously all through college, and through law school, and in helping us settle into the townhouse and our current home. She saw the big picture, and I am grateful.

I've had a rough year. The big move to Utah and the little move from the apartment to the house were challenging. Selling the house, having Garry gone for training for 12 weeks, getting our paperwork approved by the FBI and then waiting and waiting and waiting on the bank while living with three small kids in a small apartment was very challenging. But, through it all, when I would call and complain and cry from the stress of it all, she would offer help and support, and I am so grateful.