Friday, July 31, 2009

Kami and Levi's wedding

Yesterday we had the great pleasure of attending Cody's sister, Kami's wedding. She married Levi in the Mount Timpanogos temple. These reflections are for you, Mr. and Mrs. Wilson.

It was a gorgeous day everywhere we went. The temperature didn't get searing hot, and it was sunny. Moments after you left the reception, it started raining just a tad, so we raced to cover the gifts and clean up, but most everything was done by 10:00 pm. But backing up, the ceremony was one of the most beautiful I've attended. The sealer talked about the authority he had to start this marriage, and your obligation to repent and work together to make it a permanent and eternal bond. Kami, you bawled the whole time, with sparkles in your eyes. I could tell you really wanted to listen carefully and soak everything in, but you were so excited as well. Levi, you seemed so calm and composed, but you never stopped smiling. We couldn't stop smiling either.

We left the temple, collected our kids, and waited for you to come out. The bright pink dresses on all the little girls was simply adorable, and the photographer had a heyday with it. We chatted, congratulated, and played while we waited, which wasn't too long; and then you came out of the temple, looking dazed, but blissfully happy. I think that's the perfect way to look after the wedding. We then commenced in loads of picture taking, and then the luncheon was a lot of fun. The sandwiches and salads were fantastic! The kids loved running around and getting dirty. I had to wash Lee's shirt after the luncheon so that it would be decent for the reception.

After you left the luncheon, it was time for the rest of us to get to work. We helped decorate, tried to get the kids to nap, and went and got the ice cream for the reception. There was plenty, and the people at the store were so helpful and kind. I'd highly recommend the Smith's store in Pleasant Grove. We came back and started setting up the food. Great choices! It was fun for me to display the food in a pretty way.

Cody and I both loved the reception at the Amphitheater. It was a beautiful location, but also a very well laid-out reception. There was enough space to have a spot for signing your book, another spot for the reception line, another place for food, as well as a place for dancing (a huge highlight for the kids, who could often be found twirling with a cousin), and even frisbee. Even though there were lots of lines, nothing felt congested, and nobody had the cattle-call feeling that you get in overcrowded areas. Annalisa walked around and made the guests giggle. Lee liked to climb up high on the amphitheater and watch over the people below. Everything ran smoothly.

We loved the kids orchestra at the end during your program. I laughed so hard when Levi pulled the "garter" out of Kami's dress, and it was a frisbee that was sent far over the gentlemen below. We cheered you off, and then went home.

Thanks for letting us be a part of your wedding day. I hope you always look at July 30 as being the best day of your lives.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

First Pony Tail

I've tried a couple times unsuccessfully, but today I finally got it. Annalisa's first tiny pony tail!

She's also demonstrating the proper way to exercise with mom.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Family Reunion Time-Cody's Side part 2

(Scroll down 2 posts if you haven't read any of the family reunion ones yet; these are in chronological order, and that's how the blog posts work)

The next morning (Saturday) we woke up early and Cody and I made pancakes for everyone for breakfast. Then, once we were all fed, pottied, and dressed, we split for the morning's activity time. I mostly quilted. Lee thumped around and found all kinds of dirt and trouble to dig up. Annalisa was a little doll and played happily in a portable crib, or flirted with whoever would pick her up.

Cody and went to go work with the horses. They caught a few and saddled the rideable ones so the kids could go on horse rides. Cody worked with Dixie, mom and dad's untrained horse. He took her bareback for the first time. In case you didn't know, Cody's actually very good with horses.
Grandpa S beat us all in poker, much to Jared H's dismay.

After lunch, we had a treasure hunt (Thanks Kami and Levi for all the organization!) and then a spontaneous mutton bustin' competition for the kids.

We finished the day with more swimming, quilting, food, games, and laughter.

Sunday we woke up, packed up, cleaned up, and drove (up) home. We made it back just in time to see my Aunt and Uncle (on my mom's side) and visit a little while before crashing at home, totally exhausted, but happy. Whew!

What a week this has been. We love spending time with family, and it was such a treat to see so many family members. It's certainly been the highlight of our summer, and we can't wait to see everyone again.

Family Reunion Time-Cody's Side

(Scroll down, if you haven't read the first of the Family Reunion posts)

Friday morning we woke up early, packed up the car, and left for Panguitch and the ranch for Cody's parents and siblings reunion (hereafter known as "S").

As soon as we arrived Cody and Lee went swimming. I hadn't brought swimming suits or swimming shoes, so they just used the ranch clothes. I loved Cody's outfit: old tennis shoes, black socks, hot pink sweatpants for about a 6 year old girl, black basketball shorts, and a too-small woman's flannel shirt, with a button missing to show just a tad of belly hair. Oh yes, and a cowboy hat.

We had a hot dog roast around the fire that night, then had a rip-roaring belly-splitting family talent show. I think my favorite talent was Raychel and Paul singing the baby shark song with a shark personality for each family member. Cody's did a sales pitch and mine was cooking.

Finally, when we were all so tired we couldn't see straight, we crashed in our tents.

Part two, on the post above...

Family Reunion Time-Lisa's side

Last week we were so blessed to spend time with boat loads of our family. The next few posts will be dedicated to the two family reunions we attended. Starting with Lisa's dad's side (hereafter known as "F").

I already posted about our big hike, which was fun. We also enjoyed breakfast in the canyon, and delicious dinners on each night of the week. It was so fun to be with cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents.

The "F" family mascot is the Frog. My favorite memory of this reunion was listening to the original story--from the horse's mouth--of how the frog became the mascot. I recorded the whole thing for posterity, but it is too large to upload here. I've heard the story before, but it is one of those legends that you can't hear too many times.

We are definitely a goofy bunch. This is a family of "class clowns," and when we get together, we feed off each other and it becomes a regular riot. We laughed so hard and giggled until our sides ached.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Here She Comes...

I'm afraid we've embraced the inevitable. My mom will be thrilled to see this; I walked at 10 months (took my first steps Christmas Day), and she's been determined to see Annalisa give me the same pleasure. But you can't deny this baby is super cute!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Up and Over

We have a bunch of family in town for Great-Grandpa F's 77th birthday and a family reunion. It is way cool to see them.

Today my mom convinced a big group of us to go hiking in the canyon. I've been exercising regularly for over a year now, so thought I'd be able to do it, no problem. HA! Although I had to stop nearly every 50 feet for breathers, and my toes are sore now, it was fun, and special to be with family.

Wee-pooch Mitzie gained a lot of my respect as she trotted over the mountain. While I love dogs, I could hardly call her a dog until she tackled the hike exactly the way a hound should.

The views from the top were spectacular, though, and isn't that what makes the hike worth it? Dad and I willingly took the caboose, and were pretty wiped by the end. We're not hamming it up...much...

We just couldn't resist...

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Bedtime Stories with Lee

Not long ago, Cody started telling Lee bedtime stories. There are three that Lee requests over and over again: the "Dinosaur" one, the "Airplane" one, and the "Snake" one. These are his renditions.




Monday, July 20, 2009

P.T. post #12

Accident-free today! I am so so so excited for Lee. We put him in underwear, and for the first time, he kept himself clean all day. It feels amazing not to clean up his poop. All day I've been pouring on the praise. Good job, Lee!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

It's not easy being Anna

Every now and then, maybe once or twice a week, Lee gets in this strange mood where he just can't be good. He moves from one naughty thing to another, leaving a path of destruction and messes. Usually, it's things he knows are wrong too. Like, he sneaks out of the house, then whacks Annalisa on the head, then throws his food on the floor, then kicks Annalisa in the belly, then throws Oda's sand out of her cage, etc. I take him to time-out, scold him profusely, try to redirect his energy, even (I admit ashamedly) spank him. It usually ends when I, totally exasperated, tuck him in bed and flop on the couch in tears.

Last night was one such night, and the finale of his bad-streak ended with Lee pulling Anna into my bedroom, shutting the door, and proceeding to rub an entire tub of Savex lip balm on her head. Good news: it's non-toxic. Bad news: it is nearly impossible to get out. We've washed Anna's hair four times with baby shampoo, twice with adult shampoo, and once with make-up remover. It's still in there. I was SO angry at Lee, I ended up speaking less than five words to him from there until bedtime.

Fortunately, Lee is usually a very well-mannered child. He always is eager to please. I just pray that he outgrows this eventually. I fear that by the time he outgrows his toddlerhood tantrums, he'll be into the thick of his teenagehood tantrums. And none of this is any indicator of how my other children will behave. Sigh. I'm grateful to be a mother I'm grateful to be a mother I'm grateful to be a mother...

Friday, July 17, 2009

A note about the family picture

On our blog title you will now observe a new family picture. This was taken by my dear friend, Aubri. She did a beautiful job with our family photos. You can check out her photography at the links I just put up. Here's a little more of our family pictures.

Thanks again, Aubri. You did a great job, and now you can see which ones are my favorites. ;) Sorry it's taken me forever to blog about them.