Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween (I am on the ball tonight!)

 I am posting about Halloween and it is still Halloween for another hour!  Miracle!
I love this picture.  I took this picture after the trick-or-treat.  Andy was standing to the side, but the flash made a great big spooky shadow.

Andy battled crazy traffic to get home in time for trick-or-treat.  He is awesome. He dressed as an attorney.
I wore an orange shirt and made black stickers for my belly... so it looked like a jack-o-lantern.  (Lame... but dressing up as anything when you are pregnant turns it into a dirty joke, right?  Pregnant Dorothy.  Pregnant cat.  Pregnant witch.)

Ruby was a mummy.  Alli was Malala Yousafzai.  And June was a cat/bat/skeleton/princess/dalmatian (she added the dalmatian part in just minutes before we left the house... and she took off her bat wings and cat ears before this picture).
Our trick-or-treat was wet and windy, but thankfully, not cold.  Some of Alli's friends joined us.  She has some really great friends that live nearby.  They came over afterward to sort and trade candy... quite a process!

 And Ruby tried to photo bomb lots of pictures... you should see the ones that didn't make the cut.  Oy.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Aunt Jen Rocks

Buckle your seat belts, this is going to be one long post. We went to Madison, Wisconsin this past weekend to watch Andy's sister Jen compete in the Ironman
The race started at the crack of dawn.  We were out the door of our hotel by 5:30am.  The athletes were in the water by 6:45... there were about 2800 competitors in the water for the mass start.  The swim is 2.4 miles in Lake Monona.  It is a grueling swim in open water.
Jen is wearing a black wetsuit and hot pink cap.  See her?
The racers exit the water and there are volunteers there to help strip their wetsuits.
The spectators are a lively bunch.  This kid was dressed as Waldo.  He had a sign that said, "Here I am, Dad."  We also saw a prom queen, an angel, wizards... and lots of crazies.

Jen battled through the lake, finishing the swim portion in 1:38:25.
Once Jen made the transition from swim to bike... 
(below, she is in the turquoise and black jersey with white sleeves, no shoes)

we were off to get the cars and make our way out to the bike course.
We found a couple of good spots along the bike course, so we got to see Jen a few times.
And it looked like she was having a great time!
 So were we.
 The kids found something to do no matter where we were... like playing in the dirt.  Fun.

Watching the athletes is so inspiring.  They train so hard.  Their passion is obvious. 
These guys were amazing.  
We also saw a rider miss the turn and fly into a ditch.  Luckily there was a lot of tall grass to break his fall.  And he was fine.  Embarrassed probably, but fine.

 Jen came by again.  Still smiling.
 Joyce outfitted us all with matching t-shirts that said "Team Jen."  And she brought cowbells.  And crafts to do and snacks to eat.

 Lucas and Ruby, the card sharks...
 I felt a little bike envy.  There are so many incredibly nice bikes in this race.  These bikes make a completely different sound.  The bikers just fly effortlessly up the hills. 
(I love my bike.  I do. But I did imagine myself with a fancy setup flying through the course. It would be so much fun!)
 And here she comes again. Goodness gracious... still smiling.
 We ate by the roadside.
Jen completed the 112 mile bike ride portion in 7:23:28. And then she started the marathon. 
We found a good spot to watch.
 Anne and Barb supplied us with thunder sticks.
 This looks like it must have been so much fun for Jen.
 The course looped around downtown Madison, and we moved several times so we could see Jen.
 It got dark.  This is a long race.  We cheered and cheered.
 Finally, we found a spot by the finish chute.
 Jen is still smiling triumphantly! Woohoo!
 And here she is on the Jumbotron...
 Finished in 14:38:47 officially.

Jen was pretty excited about the whole thing.  We were too.
 Though, the little ones lost their enthusiasm, and fell asleep.
 Here we are: Team Jen!  (Plus, there are four sleeping kids that aren't very visible in this picture.)
It was a long day for us... but we hadn't been training for endurance spectating.  We (the grown ups) were stiff and sore the next day from, um, sitting and standing all day.  Lame.  

Congratulations Jen on completing the Ironman!  You are amazing and inspiring!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Tooth fairy

 I do not like the loosing-teeth stage of childhood... well, I just don't like the wiggly teeth and lost teeth.  Ick.  And our tooth fairy isn't always on the ball.
Ruby lost her first two teeth months ago.  The big teeth have grown in.
Two weeks ago she lost her third tooth.  This one is out of order (normally the top front teeth would be next to go).  The tooth wasn't even that wiggly... she wasn't messing with it.  It wasn't on my radar.
At dinner, she took a bite of bread.  BREAD for Pete's sake!  And it started bleeding.  Two hours later.  It was under her pillow.
Loosing this tooth really changed Ruby's look.  Suddenly she looks much more mischievous... I didn't think that was even possible.
I hope the big tooth grows in soon.

Monday, July 1, 2013

This is the Place!

 While we were in Utah, Grandma Utah said we should check out This is the Place Heritage Park.  I wasn't sure what to expect.  As a kid, we went there and there was a big memorial statue... and tumble weed. 
Thanks to the generous Huntsman family, there is a free day every year... and we happened to be there on that day.
Yes, there is a memorial statue, but now there is so much more!  IT WAS AWESOME!
Several historic sites from all over Utah have been relocated to this park, so there is a pioneer village to explore.
The schoolhouse was a hit.  We went there twice.

 Alli tilled the garden... er... the dust patch.
 The kids explored a replica ship.
 A canon filled with candy was fired on the main street.  Candy rained down and there was sugar-induced pandemonium. So much fun!
 Pony rides!
 Alli tried her hand at milking an artificial cow.
 There are still lots of memorial statues.
 Ruby got a "shave" at the barber shop.
Alli wants to go back next year and volunteer as a pioneer.  She wants to teach in the school.
This park was definitely worth it... even on a not free day it would be worth it.  We had so much fun.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Jen and Derek got married!

There was no easing into summer this year.  We jumped right into summer with a road trip to Boulder, Colorado for Jen and Derek's wedding!
Jen is Andy's sister.  

Jen was stunning in her gown.
Penny, dressed to the (pink) nines, led the way down the aisle... Derek close behind.
 The ceremony was beautiful.  Their friend performed the marriage ceremony.  Their vows were so lovely and personal.  Derek and Jen just grinned at each other the whole time.
 Penny was adorable in her tutu.
 Jen had sidewalk chalk for the kids.  This and the playground kept them busy.
We are so happy for them!  It was such a treat to witness their marriage.