Monday, June 21, 2010

Quick Trip

We made a quick trip to Utah the first week in June in order to spend some time with Jacob. A good friend of his who joined the church while he was serving as a ward mission leader several years ago would be getting married in the Salt Lake Temple. Before the wedding events began, Jim and Jacob went on an exploring and photography expedition in the mountains. It was surprisingly still quite snowy and icy but, oh, so beautiful.

We were at the temple grounds when Stephanie and her new husband came out of the temple. What a beautiful bride!

It was great to be able to spend time with Jacob and get the chance to congratulate Stephanie. Another highlight of the trip (as with all trips to Utah) was getting to play with the grandkids! We especially enjoyed a romp in Grandma C.'s backyard and the walk down her street.

We found lots of ants and even met a little boy from China.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Satoshi's Visit

We were honored with the visit of our friend, Satoshi, from Japan the last week of May. Unfortunately, the weather was cool and rainy. Jim was busy with work and I was trying to catch up after having been out of town for a week. Poor Satoshi had to mostly entertain himself. He'd get on the bicycle and explore to his hearts content. We did feed him well (I think we got as much satisfaction from watching him pack the food away) and provided a comfortable bed for him in which to sleep. We had hoped to take him on a camping trip over the weekend but the forecast predicted more rain and cold weather. Determined to take Satoshi on an unforgettable adventure, we packed up the camper and headed to Bruneau Dunes which gets the least amount of rain in the area. We left our home in a rainstorm with fingers crossed. The closer we got to Bruneau, the clearer the skies became. We arrived to find the sun shining and the temperature perfect for our evening activities.

After a delicious dinner consumed in the camper and a laborious hike up the big dune followed by an exploration of the surrounding landscape, we built a fire and roasted marshmallows for some of our original Nutella s'mores.

Exhausted but renewed by our adventure and time spent together, we headed for home.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Snow in May!

Believe it or not, there was fresh snow on the mountain on May 25. I took a picture to prove it!

Friday, June 11, 2010

May Days

Sariah, Brett and Cami paid us a visit in the middle of the month. Sariah and Brett brought along a recently returned missionary friend who had grown up in South Africa. We loved having them! Besides their wonderful company, attending the Boise music week production of "Hello Dolly" was a highlight of the weekend.

Jim traveled to Japan on the 17th for business. I drove to Utah to give Elly a hand. Her boys were out of school and she had work every afternoon. My plans for grand adventures with the kids were dashed when I arrived to find that two of them were ill. Our adventures would have to stay closer to home.

Becca brought a huge smile to my face when she and Maggie were taking "naps". She suddenly sat up and said, "Cock-a-doodle-do!" I guessed it was time to wake up.:)

Maggie had a collection of "pet" roly polys. One day, when the sun was actually shining, she took me and Becca to the park to show us where those roly polys came from. Both girls rode their bicycles. Becca's idea of "ride" was to have grandma push her. What a workout! Thankfully the park was only a block away.

The magical source of roly polys? One would open the sprinkler valve access covers and there one would find them. We found several and soon there were girls from all over the neighborhood looking for their own little pets. Maggie put hers in her bicycle basket.

We played on the playground a little. Becca went down the slide at least ten times and wanted me to take a picture every time. This shot was the cutest. Of course, Maggie needed to have her picture taken on the slide as well.

Becca found a butterfly net lying on the ground. She picked it up and headed straight for me! She had a great time playing with it until a larger girl tried to take it from her. Becca wouldn't give it up until I discovered that the girl was actually it's owner. Then I got involved in the tussle. Becca wasn't too happy to have to give up such a cool toy.

I think we lost only one roly poly on the ride home. Back at home, Becca played in the sandbox a bit.

We planned to have a picnic on the day forecast to be sunny and warm. We were so anxious to get out of the house on the appointed day that we forged on undeterred in spite of the fact that threatening clouds seemed to be headed our direction and the wind was blowing like a banshee. Surely that nice weather would come just in time for our picnic? It was not to be the case. We were saved from having our lunch blown into the next county by a wall at the park that we could hunker down behind while eating. That worked great until the spray from the sprinklers above got to us. After a few bites of food, the kids headed off to the playground totally unfazed by the weather or the sprinklers. But soon I was cold, slightly damp and tired of chasing napkins across the park. The clouds looming threateningly overhead only added to my discomfort. All I had to say was, "We need to leave in five minutes or we'll get rained on." We left in about eight minutes.

The fevers had mostly subsided so we celebrated Grandma's visit with dinner at Olive Garden!

The staff probably breathed a sigh of relief when we finally left the restaurant and headed for home.

After several days of not-so-pleasant weather and sick children, we were thrilled with a beautiful warm and sunny day. The kids seemed to be on the upswing health-wise and so we spent the morning before I had to leave for home walking to and exploring a new neighborhood. The fountain was as inviting as it was beautiful.

How we appreciated that glorious morning!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

We Love Our Springtime Backyard!

Our duck friends enjoyed our pool until we took the cover off and cleaned it out later in the spring.

The cool temperatures this year and abundance of rain brought out the best in our backyard.

We've scratched our heads for several years trying to figure out why our summer flowers are not so prolific. We fertilize them and do everything but sing to them! I think we have finally figured it out--there's too much shade for the type of flowers planted there. Back to the drawing board!