Monday, July 28, 2008

Candy Cane Pool

Another fun pool!

On Saturday we spent a family afternoon at a nearby mini-water park. It was our first trip to this pool. The activities accommodated all the ages of my children. It had a couple of large slides that Porter was big enough to ride. It had the fun play structure above that Sophia and Preston enjoyed.

It's surprising to me how old Porter is getting. He did his own thing the whole time, just checking in with us periodically. Sophia stuck to us like glue, but that's more her personality. Preston was also happy to be held, he didn't know what to think about all of the splashing water. He kept a close eye on the big dumping bucket of water.

Tara, you should think about planning a playgroup here!

Baby Fish


Our fish had babies. What a surprise it was when the kids announced they'd spotted two new little fish in our tank.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Crooked Lane

We went swimming with a friend and her super cute baby at her community water park yesterday.

Sophia was so excited to go. I told her we were going to Fall Creek, but in her mind she heard and continued to call it Crooked Lane... as in "I can't wait to go swimming at Crooked Lane mommy... Mommy, when are we going to Crooked Lane?"

The only Crooked Lane I know of is from a Berenstain Bear book. An older woman, whom the cubs think is scary, lives on Crooked Lane in the Halloween book. I love how kids think!

But we had a great time. The weather was a little sketchy at first, but we were able to swim for two hours and had the pool virtually to ourselves. It was a perfect pool that kept all three of my kids happy. Thanks Nicole!

Nicole also introduced Porter to the joys of a Wii (I don't know if thanks are in order for that or not :) and Sophia and Preston were loved affectionately by her dog. When we left Porter asked if Nicole and her husband could babysit them sometime very soon. I think he liked it there.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Memory Lane...


Memory Lane...the tag that gets everyone involved

I got this from my friend, Audra's, blog. I hope you will play along. Here are the directions:

1. As a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn't matter if you knew me a little or a lot, anything you remember!

2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you. If you don't want to play on your blog, or if you don't have a blog, I'll leave my memory of you in my comments.

the mint oreo

I recently discovered the minty variety of oreo... mmmmm... my new favorite!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Doug's Field Trip to an Oil Rig



4th of July

I really wanted to have a big July 4th bash, I just didn't have the energy after our long trip. So instead, we checked out our community activities.

We started with the parade... We settled into our place and watched the line up of police cars and flag procession... Followed by nothing... We thought the parade was over, we were making jokes about how Doug's parent's neighborhood has a better parade then that... We packed up and started to leave, and then noticed that no one else was leaving... Assuming they must know something we don't, we sat back down... And waited and waited... Sure enough more parade followed... Complete with many more long breaks... Too funny... But my kids got enough candy to make them very happy...

We went to a concert of patriotic music and finished up with the community firework show. It was nice, a nice way to celebrate the birthday of the blessed nation in which we live.

Our home firework show, inspired by Doug and Porter, was postponed until the following night, due to tired children. Porter loved it, Sophia loved watching, but wouldn't even hold a sparkler, and Preston hated the noise and sudden movement, so I put him down to bed.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Clean Up


So I got home from Utah and decided that ...

I REFUSE TO SPEND THE SUMMER PICKING UP AFTER MY KIDS...

and I repeat that to myself during the day as I see their stuff lying around and I am tempted to pick it up and put it away for them.

I've been a lot happier, I don't feel so much like every body's maid. I have a little more time to be a mother and event planner.

How am I keeping the clutter at bay?

I have introduced the disappearing box. Every evening they get a ten minute warning, during that ten minutes they have to pick up everything that they don't want "disappeared."

Sophia thinks if any of her stuff goes in the box it never comes out and is redistributed to a child who won't leave it out. She has a left a few things out on purpose, claiming she doesn't want them anymore. I think she just wanted to see the box eat something.

Porter can buy his stuff back for $5 a pop. It's working remarkably well. I still help them pick things up, but at least I don't feel like I am the only one who cares.

I also made a job chart, inspired by Lisa. It is working as well... so far... Porter inspired the name, I first wrote job chart... Porter wanted it changed to Fun Park. Saturday is their first pay day. It has helped me be more organized and set small goals that are very clearly stated for my kids.


I hope I can keep things going even after the novelty wears off...

Strengthening Your Relationship


My cute visiting teacher gave a lesson a couple of months ago that has given me a lot to think about. She said that hard times will come, it's a given. And those hard times can sometimes be a real strain on your relationship with your spouse. So the trick is to strengthen your relationship now, so that when hard times come, it won't shake the relationship. It will be able to withstand the test.

Such an interesting thought. So often we think of this concept in terms of our testimony, but it's so applicable to our marriages too.

Hairspray

I thought this movie was so fun. A true musical with so much groovy music! Doug went up to bed in the middle, but I smiled through out the whole thing. I was raised on classic musicals, State Fair, The Sound of Music, and Summer Stock were some of my favorites. So I am enjoying some of the new musicals like High School Musical and Hairspray.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

First steps...


Preston took his first steps on Sunday night. I knew he didn't walk for us in Utah because he was waiting for his dad to be there! He knows he's doing something grand. He takes a step, smiles his huge beautiful, sparkly smile,takes another step or two, claps, falls, repeats.

Pictures and video to come.

Lost Tooth--Oh Happy day!


Porter pulled it out all by himself yesterday. He was starting to feel like he would never experience this momentous day.

The tooth fairy visited our home for the first time yesterday. I can't believe my child is old enough to be loosing teeth!

Sophia searched high and low for the tooth picture she colored at preschool weeks ago. She was hoping if she left that one under her pillow, the tooth fairy might deliver. She was disappointed to learn that she would have to wait a couple of more years before she can expect to lose one legitimately, but she went to bed hoping the tooth fairy would check in on her, just in case he wanted to leave her money, check her teeth, or even pull one

Porter woke up at midnight, discovered the tooth fairy had taken his tooth, but left no money. Panic followed, until he discovered the money had fallen to the side of the bed. He didn't discover this, however, until after he'd woken his dad to share his distress.

This tooth caused more drama earlier in the day. Shortly after it fell out, Porter put it in a baggie ( I told him to place it in a sealed envelope, but he didn't listen) and set it on the counter. Me, in my cleaning mode, didn't look to see if anything was in the baggie someone had left on the counter before I tossed it into the garbage. Hysteria ensued several hours later when Porter went to find his tooth to show his dad and discovered it missing. Me, realizing what must have happened, dug through the garbage, found an empty bag, and kept digging until I discovered the missing tooth... phew, that was a close one...

Monday, July 07, 2008

Grateful Sunday



*Our ward changes meeting times in July. Our ward switched from 1:30 church to 8:30 church. I was happy all day! I feel like I've been given an extra day in my week. Instead of waiting around half the day to go to church, we're home by 11:45. It's a beautiful thing!

*Holidays. I love three day weekends. I felt like we had so much family time! Everyone (myself and the kids) are happier when daddy is home!

*My own bed. It's nice to be home, and be settled back in. My baby stopped sleeping through the night in Utah. He's doing better.

Friday, July 04, 2008

The Wasatch Back

My brother Adam organized a 12 person team to run the Wasatch Back, a 180 mile race from Logan to Park City. We had two vans (in our case one truck and one van) with six people in each. My friend Kathryn, whom I haven't run with in years, and who recently ran another marathon, came down to run the race with me. It was so, so, so fun to see her! It was also really neat to spend so much time with my beloved brother, Adam.

Each person had to run 3 legs (my portion included a 6.7 , 3 and 5.3 mile run). Each leg was ranked (mine were ranked, hard, easy and hard). The worst legs were not run by me, and looked, on the grid, to be straight up a mountain! I was so grateful to my brother for not assigning me those legs! I think we were all very happy with our routes

When our van was on, we provided the water support and cheering for our runner. When our van was off, we tried to sleep and prepare for our next leg. The best stretch of sleep we got was 3 hours. We ran through the night... my least favorite part, even worse than running almost 7 miles at 1:30 in the blazing afternoon heat with no water (my team hadn't realized yet that we needed to do that for each other... we followed each one of our runners after that!) At night we had to run with headlamps and reflective vests. I almost stepped on, but luckily saw just in time and jumped around, a huge snake. I didn't stop to see if he was alive or not

Despite many challenges to my training, included another flare up in my knee and my IT band just a few days before the race , I managed to run the race! Wahoo! Nothing another trip to a massage therapist, and a difficult track down of a foam roller couldn't fix! I even managed to run at or slightly better than the race pace I'd predicted for myself. No small feat, since I hadn't trained at that pace. Everyone of my team mates truly rose to the occasion. The people in my van were such neat people. They were so positive and uplifting and encouraging.

What a crazy, but very cool, almost surreal experience, to have an instant bond with semi-strangers working towards a unified purpose, while being exhausted, hot and hungry, but on a 24 hour race adrenaline... It's hard to explain...

I also have to add that I think I must be a little crazy for doing it. Seriously, if I was going to get a 24 hour vacation away from my children, was this really the best way to spend my time???

Our stats:

Time: 27:44:51.2
Overall Place: 194 out of 546 teams
Place in our division (open co-ed) : 52 out 210 teams
Number of miles run: 181
Number of bum knees: 3
Number of times people on our team puked: 1
Number of cases of heat exhaustion: 1


This was by far my best run. 8 am, beautiful weather, and my last run of the race. That knowledge right there kept a smile on my face! You can see Enz waiting with water at the right.


See those runners ahead of me, I totally passed them! Oh yeah!



This is my favorite picture, passing off the baton to my brother Adam, in the exchange point.

You can see me stretching, nervously watching for Kathryn at my first exchange.

Enz and Erin passing off the baton (well, it was really a wristband).

Erin giving Enz water support. You can see we ran on all sorts of terrain.

Brock, Adam, Angela and Kathryn

Angela and Kathryn-- All cleaned up, half delirious, completely incapable of making a decision, and happy happy girls!

Adam and Angela


Adam, after his final leg. He did an amazing job. His knee has bothered him for years, so he was rather optimistic to think he could run the race. He was unable to train, but with lots of ibuprofen, wrapping his knee and a roam roller, he did an incredible job. He ran strong, with great times. I can't wait to see what he'll be able to pull off next year with some training!

Go Adam, go!

Adam, watching for me at his first exchange...

Yes, Adam is single, so if you know anyone who might be a good fit, why don't you let me know, and we'll try to arrange a meeting. He's 28... graduated with a masters in mechanical engineering... He has a job as a rocket scientist... I'm not kidding!

He won't appreciate this completely unsolicited plea for help, but he rarely, if ever reads my blog, so maybe he'll never even find out. And maybe, something good will come of it.

Our mode of transportation. Funny, at the last minute Adam had to find 3 substitute runners, 1 substitute volunteer, and a substitute vehicle. The AC went out in the van we were supposed to take. I find it amazing he was able to pull everything off!

Enz and I waited in line for a massage between our 1st and 2nd runs... so worth it!

Someone in the other van compiled a little video of the race, none of the people in my van are in the video, but it really captures the essence of the race.
http://jentronmiskin.blogspot.com/

If you want to read Kathryn's version of the race click below. I laughed outloud and totally agreed with her sentiments.

http://richards2007.blogspot.com/2008/07/race-recap-sans-sugarcoating.html

*all photos are compliments of Adam's camera... thank you!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

The Secret Garden

Sophia, enjoying her breakfast, in the secret garden.
Just down the path one can find the enchanted forest (I'm serious!)

The Alpine Slide

Doug, the kids, and Barbara, my mother-in-law, picked me up in Park City after my big race. Before we headed home we opted for a ride down the Alpine Slide...











More Family Pics!











I Love the Mountains, I Love the Rolling Hills







We enjoyed several trips up the canyon while staying with my parents. I love the mountains and so do my kids!


I think Porter's favorite part of our canyon adventures is the exploring and the climbing!