Saturday, August 31, 2013

And That's That

 Well, the kids have been back in school for a week now, so I suppose it is officially official. Summer is over. Wahhhhh!!!

Just kidding. Life goes on, right? We had a blast the last couple of weeks and we completed our bucket list, so that's good. 

About a week before school started, we went back to school shopping. I let the kids choose a first day of school outfit and new shoes, but that's all we buy in the way of clothing. It's still so hot that they just wear their summer clothes anyway. We do our real back to school shopping in October when everything for fall and winter is on clearance because summer clothes are back in the stores for next year. Haha, just kidding. But seriously, why do stores operate that way?! So weird. I learned the October shopping trick from my aunt when Laylah was about to start preschool 6 years ago. She's a smart cookie.

We still needed some supplies though, as well as a few new backpacks and underwear, and necessities like that. So we spent the day shopping and went out to Applebee's for dinner because we had the handy free kid's meals from the library reading program. It was a fun day and I loved that we got so much done in such a short time because of our time crunch (ie. I am a procrastinator and school started in a week).

 We went to several movies at the dollar theater in American Fork because our Pass of All Passes gets us in for free! I love those passes.

We also had to say goodbye to our Auntie Kaylie whom we love and cherish and will miss like crazy. She left to go up to school at USU. Go Aggies!
PS Kaylie is actually 2 inches taller than me. No wonder everyone thinks I'm 5'9''. I'm always wearing giant heels.

And here is documentation that we did actually go camping at least once this summer, as promised back in June. I despise camping because I hate to be dirty. I hate when my kids are dirty and I hate that it takes so much work for such a short little trip, and yeah. I'm just a Negative Nelly, so there.

Also, it rained. A lot.

And why not? Why not add a whole lot more mess to this ridiculously short camping trip?
But guess what? The kids had fun, and they loved it, and nature really is beautiful and smells nice, so it was fine. I just like to be negative (haha).
 We went with Andy's brother Ryan and his family. My kids adore their twins.
Here's Jonah playing soccer with a really tiny ball and three 2-year-old blurs chasing after him.

Ryan looks super duper happy to be here. I actually think he just didn't know I was taking a photo. He was the positive one the whole trip while I just sat and whined.

Snugly wuggly kids

Andy and I had Magnus between us. It was super comfortable. Oh wait.... no it wasn't.

The kids found this little clearing behind our campsite and were playing "Indians" for 2 hours. They're so funny.
Pretty pretty mountains. Utah is a lovely place.

Here's a view of the valley as we were driving back down the mountain.

Aaaaaaaand, the awesome clean-up. Everything was muddy. Yuck. I was thrilled to cross that activity off of our summer bucket list.

And here are the fruits of our shopping labor. These bags sat on my dryer for a week before we got it all out and organized it and put it away.

Kids get excited about everything. I love it.

After my last post, we ended up not going boating at all because the weather took a turn for the worse, so we did some indoor activities instead. We headed to Trafalga and climbed the rock wall, played laser tag, went mini-golfing, and played arcade games.

After that we went to another movie at the dollar theater. It was a great way to end the summer, even if it wasn't boating. I love my family.

The next day, we did some cleaning, chores, and general getting ready for school. We put backpacks together with school supplies, we painted nails, we relaxed, we read books, and we stayed dry while the rain raged outside (what is with Utah this summer? It has been so wet!) We also had a few soccer games and we just spent time together as a family before school had to go and start and mess up all of our good times.
But seriously, even though this summer flew by, it was sure a good one. Definitely one of the best.

Next up: Back To School Celebration!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Life's Lessons

We have had a bit of trouble trying to get through our summer bucket list this last week before school starts. We were supposed to spend the day at Seven Peaks yesterday. When we drove up with excited kids ready to go and the parking lot was empty, I knew something must be amiss. I was right. They were closed. We tried the Murray Pool instead. Closed. Cottonwood Heights? Closed. As a last resort, we headed over to my grandma's community pool which is still fun but not as exciting (since we go there about once a week) because the kids were ready to swim. It was closed due to a broken pump. I couldn't believe our bad luck! The other three were closed because apparently school has started for the majority of Utah. I guess Murray district is one of the last to start. 

I don't get it. Whatever happened to August being a part of summer instead of back to school time? 

We ended up heading to a splash pad/playground. It is weird to me how much fun my kids used to have at places like that and now they're bored after 30 minutes. They're growing up so much. Sad. Magnus was the only one who played non-stop and threw a fit when we were ready to leave. I guess my days of hanging out at the park for hours on end while my kids play are over.  It's weird.

Today we have plans to go boating. The weather is against us though and it's windy and stormy. We'll see how long we can last. The kids are bummed that their last few days of freedom haven't worked out as planned. I had to explain to them that that is life, so they may as well get used to it and get over it. Those words are more for me though. It's a hard lesson to learn sometimes.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Coming To An End

 Well, how fast has this summer gone by? Faster than any in my current recollection. I know that had a lot to do with school (I got my grades back... 4.0 baby!) and the fact that I only get a 2 week break, but it makes me a little sad. I am really glad that I took so many pictures this year. I have noticed that when I am feeling happy and content, I tend to take more photos. When I am not as happy and stressed with life, I tend to take less. I suppose it has something to do with wanting to remember and not wanting to remember.

Whatever the case may be, I took a lot of pictures this summer, everything from the daily mundane to exciting adventures, for which I am glad. Here is a sampling of each end of the spectrum and everything in between.

The Silent Assassin strikes again. Disaster and chaos seem to follow this child wherever he goes.

I found him like this one morning. I'm not sure why he was there, unless he has managed to inherit his father's unique sleep-walking abilities. If that is the case, I am a tad concerned.

 Oh, these boys' love of Pokemon sure does run deep. Here is Jonah's collection of cards.

Cookies and lemonade anyone?

We finally made it to Seven Peaks Waterpark with our passes.  Baron has turned out to be an amazing big brother who loves Magnus fiercely and it makes my heart so happy.
 It plum tuckered this boy out.

Jonah went fishing with his Papa and caught some beauties with his new fishing pole. They are the catch-and-release type, but unfortunately this one passed away before it was released. 

Fortunately, it didn't go to waste. It was delicious.

It is really hard to tell, but Jonah is right near the top of that giant tree.  He loves to climb anything.

Wow, it's the Jonah show I just realized. We had been growing his hair out all summer, and it was finally time for some haircuts before school started.
 We decided not to go with the mohawk.

We had a new bitty-baby born into the family. Little Garrett is my brother Nate's little guy. He is delicious.

 Do you see where this boy is? That's right, in my bed. Not only is he in my bed, he is on my side of the bed, in my spot. Do you see that tiny area of blue sheet? That is where I was all scrunched up because this youngest child of mine is a spoiled stinker and I am too tired to take him back to his own bed when he sneaks into mine at 5 in the morning, so he stays there and even though I am dead tired, I can't seem to wake up enough to put him back where he belongs. Ohhhh, how my mothering has changed. Never have any of my other children been allowed into my bed combined as many times as this one has. I am such a pushover.

 This sweet girl cleaned the entire kitchen while I was at the gym one morning, which was a disaster pre-cleaning, and she even made pancakes afterwards. She doesn't do this all the time, but when she does it is right when I needed it most. Bless her.

The same day, a dear friend of mine brought over this "Bag of Sunshine" and left it on my porch with the sweetest note. Bless her too. 

I absolutely adore weddings. My cousin Adam got married and I think the reason weddings are so much fun, especially family weddings, is because I get to see so many people I love all at the same time in the same place. This is my mom's side of the family who I am very close with, and I simply can't say how much I love all of these people. That's a lot of love folks.

And Adam definitely married up when he tricked Alli into marrying him ;)
 We had such a fun night celebrating, eating, talking and laughing. 

One day I was driving home and Andy called. He reminded me that the car needed gas and I told him I thought I'd be fine. I despise getting gas, and Andy almost always does it. Well, unfortunately for me, Andy was right and about a 1/2 mile from home the car stopped in the middle of the road. I was able to get it started and into a parking lot. As soon as I put it in park, it died again. Here is us, walking home, the boys lolligagging :)
 Later we went to get the car and I filled it up with gas. I guess the gas station had a $100 limit and it stopped pumping. The car wasn't even filled up all the way. I guess it really was empty, haha!

Daphne had her first soccer tournament and her team played awesome! They made it to the finals and ended up taking second place. 

Daphne's coach actually coaches 2 teams, so they have practice together and they are all great friends. The two squads are the ones that ended up being in the finals together, and like I mentioned, Daphne's team took second place. This was after the awards ceremony and all of these cute teammates/friends were so happy that they all won a medal.
 Daphne's coach is fabulous.

What is summer without swimming? We go swimming to my grandma's pool almost weekly.

And here's my little Sadie who doesn't get much blog time ever. I just have to say that I love this little dog so much. She bugs me sometimes, and I hate that she licks everyone to death, but she is such a good  and obedient little dog (most of the time.) As I type this she is sitting at my feet and she is my little buddy throughout the day. She follows me around and when I sit, if my hand is in reach, she'll bump it with her head to remind me to give her a little pat now and then. It is said that people with dogs are happier and live longer, and I have to believe that it's true. They are such loyal and happy companions. Thanks little dog, your family loves you.

Kaylie and I went on a last ride together a few days ago. She is heading up to Utah State next week for college and I will miss her so.  My kids will too, she is a fabulous auntie.


 At least they got to help her give Luna a bath before she leaves. They have been begging to do this all summer. I don't really know what they were expecting, but I hope it was everything they dreamed it would be, haha.

My mom told me that when I got done with this semester we would go out and do lunch and whatever else I wanted. I just like to be with her. We went to City Creek, ate at the Copper Onion (delish!) and moseyed around the mall. We got ice cream at Farr's, window shopped at really expensive stores and found some great deals at some not-as-expensive stores. I love my mom more than I can express and I love to be with her. She is the absolute greatest mom (to me :) ever.

Park days are fun days and I love this little guy. 

 The sunset was incredible last night. Of course my poopy phone camera doesn't do a fabulous job capturing it, but it was a sight to see. The sun was literally hot pink. It was breathtaking.

 I can barely believe school starts in a week. I have so many things I want to do before then and so many things I have to do before then, and isn't it a shame that there just never seems to be quite enough time for everything?

On the docket for the week is: A quick camping trip, a trip to the dollar movies, back to school shopping, hit up Seven Peaks at least one more time, swimming at Murray Pool (we have a free pass that expires soon!), a snow cone run, and one more day boating at the lake.

Ahhhh summer, as you come to an end, I reflect upon my love/hate relationship with you. I love your carefree days, your easy-going attitude. I love the fun in the sun, the no homework and no schedules. I love the summer treats, the water, the warmth on my skin. I'm sad you're ending, and at the same time relieved. I hate to be hot, I long for the crispness of fall. I get tired of badgering kids to clean up their messes and I am ready for a better time-table. But I will miss you. Until next year...