Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Museum of Natural Curiosity

For the month of August Thanksgiving Point has $2 Tuesdays, where each of their venues is only $2 for admission. It's a screamin' deal since they are normally about $15 each. Of course, where there is a great deal, there are also lots of people, especially at such a new venue as the Museum of Natural Curiosity which just opened a few months ago. We had to wait in line for an hour to get in, and then it was crazy busy inside. But, for $2, you really can't complain.

I wish we would have spent more time outside because it wasn't crowded, but we went out at the end of our visit and had to hurry through it. The kids loved the hedge mazes. 

There was also a pretend cave with a little tunnel inside. Julia and Micah were playing the tunnel for five minutes, then I yelled up to them that it was time to move on. Julia came out, but not Micah, so I sent her back in to get him. A minute later she came back and said she couldn't find him. I thought, "Uhhh...then where did he go?" Then Julia said, "maybe he went outside." So I asked Julia if there was an opening to the outside on the other side of the tunnel, and she said yes. Oops! I hadn't realized that. We ran outside to the other side of the cave where the opening to the tunnel was and found Micah wandering around in the trees on top of the cave.

Inside Camden loved the sand and rotating wheel. You put sand on the rotating wheel and make designs. I guess it was fascinating to Camden, he stayed there with my Mom for a while after had we moved on.

Micah playing with the sand.

Behold the Floating Head, and hands.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Riding Bikes

This is from a bike ride we took a little while ago. It was memorable to me because of how cute (and frustrating) Micah was and how beautiful it was that evening.

This particular evening we drove down to a pathway near Utah Lake so Julia could ride her newish bike. We had been meaning to get her a bike so she could start to learn how to ride a bike, but we just barely bought her one this summer after Julia kept seeing all her new friends here riding their bikes. She has training wheels on it still, but I'm thinking a little bit longer and we will take them off and teach her to ride a bike for real. She started out really unsure of herself, even with the training wheels, but now she is willing to go faster and farther.

Micah has been feeling left out just sitting in the stroller whenever we go out with Julia and her bike, so this time since my mom was coming with us I brought a little bike my parents have at their house so Micah could ride a bike. My mom followed Julia with Camden in the stroller as Julia rode her bike and I stayed with Micah.

It was slow going. He would pedal a little, then ask me to push him. Then want to stop and look around. Pedal, push, stop, repeat. Mom and Julia got really far ahead of us.

Then Micah saw some pebbles in the path and he had to stop and put them in his basket. He got back on his bike and we went a little farther, and then he noticed that the entire side of the path was full of pebbles! It was a very exciting discovery for him. So he got off his bike started putting handfuls of small rocks into his front basket.

 He did that until his basket was brimming over with pebbles.

 Meanwhile, I stood around and enjoyed the scenery. At first I kept trying to get him to get back on his bike and keep moving, but after a few minutes I realized it didn't really matter if we caught up with Julia or not, or if Micah rode his bike far. He was having fun with his rocks, so I just let him do his thing. We didn't make it very far after that, just a couple more feet, before Julia and my mom caught back up with us heading back the opposite direction.

And here is the third child trying out the bike, at home.

Saturday, August 09, 2014

A Trip Up the Canyon

Last Saturday my Mom suggested the next day we should go for a drive up the canyon. We used to do this a lot when we were growing up, so frankly I'm surprised it took six months of being in Utah before we headed up the canyon. 

So Sunday after church we ate lunch, took naps (everyone except me and the kids) then got ready to go to the canyon. As we were getting into the cars we noticed the mountains were covered in clouds and it was probably raining there. But we were all ready to go, so we went anyway and hoped it would have stoped by the time we got there.

It was sort of on and off drizzling when we got to the top of the mountain and stopped at the Ridge Trail. We went for a little walk as it was drizzling, but it stopped a little way into the walk. Julia was really excited to go "exploring" and was practically running along the trail. She did good until the very end when she was tired out and we were almost back to the car. 

"I can't walk anymore."

Camden was super smiley and happy to be outside.

Micah was pretty solemn and subdued the whole time because he had just woken up from a nap in the car. He didn't walk at all. I carried him half the way and Grandpa carried him the other half.
Julia in the lead.

Family picture at a ridge.

The backside of Mount Timpanogos.
Julia leading the boys. Afterwards we had a sandwich dinner at a picnic table near where we parked and then headed home.

What's Been Going On: The Everyday

A few random pictures of our more day to day lives:

My cousin Sam came home from his LDS mission to Japan. We went to the airport to welcome him home and Julia helped me make a sign. There were plenty of signs to welcome him home, and plenty of people. He looked a little shell shocked and when I asked him if he recognized any of the kids, including my younger cousins, he said no.

August has turned out to be unusually cool in Utah. We have been getting a lot of summer thunderstorms (almost daily) and it has been keeping the temperature to a manageable level. We'll see how long it lasts, but for now we like it. Earlier this week we decided to have a "tea party" on the front lawn. When the neighbor kids saw us they came over too and doubled the size of our tea party.

 Camden was trying to eat the flowers and didn't like how it tasted.

One day Micah woke up with a tail. The night before Robert had taken the pajamas out of a pile of clean clothes waiting to be put away, and apparently there was a sock stuck on the pajamas, in just the perfect spot. What was great was Micah had no idea...

We were all sick with some nasty 24 hour bug in July, just not all at once. Camden was one of the last to get it, and he pretty much only had it for a few hours. He woke up one morning, threw up on me, and then right away went back to sleep on top of me. As I sat there with a sick sleeping baby on top of me and covered in throw up I thought, "uhh, what now?"

Julia drew this self-portrait. She is wearing a tiara because she says she is a princess. Sometimes she tells me she can't do certain things because she is a princess, to get out of doing things. I do like how well she can write her name now.

Here is the artist with a pen over her ear. A character in an episode of Sophia the First always puts her pencil over her ear, so Julia has been doing that lately as well. 

Never change a baby's diaper at the bottom of the stairs. Camden got away from me while I was changing his diaper and shot up the stairs, he is quick! I couldn't resist taking a picture of that naked tush wiggling up the stairs.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Pioneer Day

July 24th in Utah is a state holiday, Pioneer Day. It is the day we celebrate the Mormon saints entering the Salt Lake Valley on July 24, 1847. Growing up we would often go to the big parade in Salt Lake to celebrate, the Days of '47 Parade. It is a lot of fun, but I do remember having to wake up early and then wait and wait in the summer morning heat for the parade to start. 

So on our first Pioneer Day back in Utah I wasn't about to endure taking three little kids to the parade. Instead, that evening we went to a city event that West Jordan was hosting and watched the fireworks display there. They had pony rides, tram rides, and bounce houses you go could pay for, which we did. But it turns out Julia and Micah had the most fun playing on the cool big playground they had at the park there, which is always there and is free.

We did get to see the floats from the big Days of '47 Parade, but we saw them earlier in the week at the preview party at the South Towne Expo Center. The floats were all parked inside and open to the public for two days so families could come and get an up close view of the floats. I loved it because we got to see the floats without having to wake up early and sit in the hot sun and wait. We went around 5:00 pm on the first day and there was plenty of parking and it wasn't too crowded. 

Camden was a little worried or confused about the floats, especially the human figures.

What is that??

The kids had fun seeing the floats and picking up some little prizes along the way. There was even a marching band there performing by marching around the venue, so it almost felt like we were at a parade!

Go Cougars!

If you've never seen the floats before they usually have a lot of entries from different LDS stakes around the valley, different cities, businesses, and a few random others like Universities or non-LDS churches or cultural groups.

I also like that you get to vote for your favorite float, even the kids get to vote. Then you watch the parade and during the parade you find out who gets the "Children's Choice" Award and "People's Choice" Award. My vote won the kids choice award, I guess I have young taste.

 On the actual day of the parade we watched the parade at home as we were eating breakfast. Julia and I kept saying, "I saw that one!" about the floats and pretty soon Micah was chiming in as well, even on the ones we didn't see.

We Have a House!

 We finally closed on a house (in Draper) two weeks ago and have been busy doing some remodeling. The house is in good condition, we are just updating it a little on the first floor- repainting a few rooms, staining kitchen cabinets, new counter tops, and putting in hardwood floors. Mostly stuff we wanted to do in our old house but never got around to it, so we figured we should just take some time now before we move and get it done in this house from the beginning. It doesn't sound like much, but it's been keeping us busy! We probably won't move in for a few more weeks, once the hardwood floors are done.

The cabinets are a work in progress.

We did like eight different paint samples on the wall in the living room because every color just looked so different on the paint chip than on the wall. It took a week to figure out what color we wanted to do, but in the end we came away with colors for our master bedroom and Julia's room as well from these same colors.

While I decided on a color Robert kept busy priming.

Here's the color we finally chose, almost done painting.

Mostly my parents have watched the kids while we work, but on this day they were at the house and being crazy getting into all the supplies. So last time I took the kids to the house I also brought a box of toys and sent them down to the basement to play. That worked well until they got tired of the toys and ran around the basement slamming doors.

Julia in her room. The current paint color isn't bad, but she wants to paint it blue to be like Elsa.

Swimming Lessons

Julia had two weeks of swimming lessons in July at the local rec. center. I put her in the first level again since she was so scared of putting her head under water last year, but it wasn't even an issue this year and she was able to complete the level by the end of swimming lessons.

The last day they put on life jackets and learned life jacket safety, and got pulled around the pool in a 'train' with by her teacher.

Getting into the water with their life jackets. They also turned on the water on the water slide for the last five minutes on the last day and they got to play. Julia was looking forward to that for the whole two weeks because she asked about it on the first day.

Julia had a blast everyday. Meanwhile I had to entertain a baby and a toddler poolside for half an hour, so I am looking forward to putting Micah into lessons next year!