Friday, July 29, 2011

16 years

16 years...
married to my best friend.
We sat at the counter at one of our favorite (maybe just mine...but he loves it because I do) restaurants.
I ordered the Market Street salad + asparagus...he ordered the early bird special (gulf shrimp).
We talked.
It is comfortable--but so dear at the same time.
We think so much alike on the things that are most important to us...
yet so different on a few non-essentials---
which keeps life interesting...
and keeps me learning...
and growing...
and I love him more for it.

We finished the date with an impromptu tour through the city of our old "firsts"

(click to enlarge)

the house I lived in when we met--
the apartment he lived in when we met--
the apartment I lived in when we were dating--
the house he lived in when we were dating--
our first apartment married...
and then the place where we were married.

We talked about our favorite memories together...
and some memories we want to make in the future.
I felt loved, happy, and grateful.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

red rover...

red rover…red rover…send Kate right over…

Tonight was one of those nights when I felt like everything is just right.
I felt as though we have planted our little family in the perfect garden…
surrounded by the most perfect people for us.

Monday, July 25, 2011

flaming gorge

At the end of a couple days camping---
all the kids wanted was the water!
Especially Wesley who celebrated his birthday at the end of our trip!!!
(Happy 8th birthday Wesley!)
Amanda and Randy brought their wave runner and we dipped in the water
for a reprieve from the sun and heat.
Flaming Gorge-
you are beautiful!
Thank you for the smiles you brought to our faces!

Sunday, July 24, 2011


family, smores, sunshine, biking, walking, sleeping in, heads covered in bandannas, starry nights, bbq corn, games, exploring, tents, dogs, eating, cousins...cousins...cousins, sunshine, air-mattresses, a new tent, campfires, reading, singing, crafts...

it might have been our favorite days of summer!

Monday, July 18, 2011

reading together

Sophie was sitting in the hallway.  She sat in front of their bedroom door...trying to get her message to them through the small gap under the door.  "Kate...I want to tell you something."  She repeated over...and over...and over again.  Her pleas were ignored and she kept persisting.

We have two of our bedrooms set aside for the girls right now.  Ellie and Sophie take turns sharing with Kate (she hasn't wanted her own room).  Having three girls---we have to be diligent in encouraging togetherness and avoiding the two against one scenario.

I waited, hoping that the two older sisters would come around and listen to the little sister pleading at their door.  They all continued.  I walked down the hall and invited them to head to Sophie's bed to read.  "If you aren't going to be nice---then you will stay together until...blah,blah,blah" I insisted.  They picked a stack of books.  They read...and read...and read.  They laughed, giggled and cuddled.  Although they were initially less than enthused as they were sent in together...they didn't want it to end when I called them for prayers.

There is a special magic in reading a book aloud to another person.  Especially to those you love.  I can't think of a better way to end a day.  They may not realize it now---but they are so blessed to have each other.  Danny and I are blessed to be a part of who they are together. 

family reunion

We gathered for her...
from OH, NY, CO, IA, AZ, TX & UT
June 24th-27th

She is our Aunt Dot (great-aunt for me)
It was a celebration of her 90th birthday!

She flew in from Ohio...after golfing nine holes.
I want to be just like her in so many ways.

She mentioned during one of our conversations during the reunion--
that we are all a bit more agile and fit than her regular companions.
I asked her the secret of her youth, agility and longevity...

Her secret:  no stress.

She was a child's psychologist for a school district.
She has spent her life doing the things she enjoys (including her work).
She has always been able to provide for herself.
She doesn't let little things bother her.
She spends a portion of every day helping others.
She is very witty.
She is a beautiful letter writer.
...and she had no kids of her own = no stress :)

She has most anything she needs or wants
so I was happy that we could compile a book of pictures and memories to surprise her!
She loved it.

We love you Aunt Dot.
Her only request:  keep gathering.
I know we will.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

summer day

what i loved about today:
waking up with not one thing scheduled on our calendar
(i don't remember ever hearing before and i need to read again...and again)
waking up to an overcast day to inspire cleaning and reading
while my girls were sleeping in i shopped this sale...
(then during "checkout" realized everything was an additional 30% off + free shipping!!!)
my girls wanting waffles for breakfast...
so they found Bisquick in the pantry...
improvised when they were short on the mix...
and then decided on their own to add fresh strawberries to their batter!
they (mainly Ellie) did all of this on their own!!!
(it was a proud moment for me)
everybody working in their workbooks
(a first for this summer)
 cleaning out bookshelves and packing away treasures for the girls when they are older
left over smothered bean burritos & corn on the cob for lunch
a phone call for Sophie...a friend wanting to play!
(those play-date phone calls are always for her sisters...she was over the moon!)
Ellie reading for AN HOUR on the couch...of her own free will
(thank you Sister's Grimm Series!)
Danny coming home after a long day of work...with a sigh..."it feels good to be home"
dinner on the deck
(breaded tilapia, homemade yogurt dill sauce, rosemary-paprika potato fries, steamed spinach)
ice cream for dessert
practice guitar...i can almost play this!!!
(the strum is killing me...i seriously have NO RHYTHM!)
a jaunt in the neighborhood making new friends!
choosing this before bed---instead of the news

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Happy birthday America!

The Fourth of July weekend is my favorite holiday!!!
There is such a wonderful gathering of celebration~
friends, family, warm weather, good food, swimming and FIREWORKS!

Our weekend began with swimming with friends all day Friday!
We cleaned up just in time for a date night at the hospital with dear friends
the Williams and Theobalds.
(They are AMAZING by the way!)

Saturday morning I went up the canyon and assisted my sister in law on a photo shoot.
She is wonderful...and so are her friends.  
As I walked down the path back to my car I could hardly believe what a beautiful world this is--
and that my home is so close to such physical majesty.
Back to the pool for swimming, tennis & pizza for the afternoon.
A bbq at our house with friends and family.
Fireworks seen from a cozy deck with dear friends and family~
while kids ran and played below. 
(Thank you Mandy!)

Sunday we were privileged to learn more about our country, 
it's military and our freedoms from a wonderful captain in the Air Force.  
I was humbled with tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat.
We had a quiet day at home...with a nice evening walk.

Monday began with an early morning breakfast.
We enjoyed especially singing God Bless America & America the Beautiful with a trumpet solo.  
The boyscout color guard and flag raising, 
with hands on our hearts, was a special reminder of the importance of our nations flag.
The girls loved the children's bike parade (bike's adorned with decorations).  
Friends and family over for games and play right after....
and then movies on my bed (how did I catch a cold in JULY!?)
As the girls finished music practice and baths we heard fireworks!
We stepped out onto the deck in our pjs and I grabbed my camera.
(I don't think I will ever take firework pictures without my lensbaby again!)

I am so grateful for....
wonderful friends and family
the freedoms we enjoy in our country
men, women and families who sacrifice so much to protect those freedoms
the beauty all around us
the communities all over this country that gather and celebrate together~

Happy birthday America!