Thursday, June 23, 2011

Speed Walkers and Trash Talkers

S.W.A.T. representing before the brutality officially began
The Professor, Kristen, Tasha, Jo, Mandolin, Deb, Cara, Me, Mike, Sara, Jacee, Kristin, and Kevin
Last weekend I had the awesome experience of participating the the Ragnar Wasatch Back Relay that goes from Logan to Park City.  I've been trying to think about how I could possibly describe what it was like, and really it is just one of those things that is hard to explain. 
This picture of my new gal pal Deb kind of sums it up.  It is crazy, fun, awesome and exhausting.
Me, Cara, Mike, Debbie, Sara, Kristin, and Jacee
I thought I knew what I was getting into, but it turns out that the idea of run, drive, sleep, repeat is a lot more involved than I had anticipated.  Lucky thing I was in the lovely Van 2 with some of the coolest people ever.

 We laughed and cried, and stayed up all night until we all got the crazy giggles.  We ran our butts off and got to model some pretty chic reflective vests.  We made up a whole new vocabulary and got up close and personal with the honey pots.  

I was smiling in this photo because everyone was there cheering for me, including Mike and Adam.  Also because I didn't realize how steep Trapper's Loop is when you aren't in a car.  It is a good thing for peer- pressure because I promised myself I wouldn't walk until they passed and because of a photo-op involving a Sinclair dinosaur I had a longer time than anticipated. 
 I realized that I had nothing to complain about the next morning when I had to watch Kristin and Cara take on the meanest, rottenest, beast of a mountain.  This leg of the run is called Ragnar because it represents strength and courage.  I saw them both when I was watching these two sisters.  It is the utter toughness of the course that makes this thing truly great.
 And it the end, S.W.A.T. conquered it.
 At this point I was hiding out in the van trying to calm my nerves because I was running next.  I'm not that good at striking a pose anyway.  They tried to give me pointers but I am afraid I'm a lost cause.

And at last...triumph.  The finish line.

 Thanks to all my co-trash-talkers (who were much better at cheering than trash talking) for letting me in on the fun.  Thanks to Kristin for runnin' the show and a big big thanks to Cara for being such a true friend.  I love all of you guys and I feel like it was an honor to be standing there with you.
And thanks to Tanner (who I always consider Mr. Kristin Bell) for coming up with such a tough race.  While I was out there I seriously contemplated burning my running shoes and never looking back but after a good night's sleep I was already on the internet looking at the Northwest Passage that runs up by Seattle.  I can't get it together for this year, but I am getting an itch to consider it for next year.  Who wants to join me?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Best Camping Trip Ever!

 We had a blast camping on the coast with family at Bullard's Beach.  Everything was perfect and it was so great for us all to be together.  I didn't have my camera much but this is what I got.
Guess which kid is really asleep.

The After-Run Crazies


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

A Perfect Day for Boating

It was finally hot enough to feel kind of summery so we headed out to the lake and busted out our boat to do some water skiing.

Well, I guess this was our grad-student version of boating anyway.
In the end we didn't do much water skiing, but we did have some pretty awesome peanut butter and jelly sandwiches which was even better. Good thing we had these kids so that they could do the manual labor and row us around in circles all afternoon.

These underage rowing slaves are great because they work for hours and you can pay them in leftover Peeps.

Bonus Picture:
Daisy has a passion for shoes. Every day she gets out all the shoes and tries them on multiple times. Then, after she has emptied out the basket she'll climb in and chill for a few minutes. We are currently working on teaching her to put everything back into the basket, but she isn't there yet.

Monday, June 6, 2011


All Brandon wanted to do for his birthday last week was to head out to the coast and see some birds. We did both.
The girls are already embarrassed when they have to be seen with their parents, especially when a kind stranger who volunteered to take the picture tries to get them to smile.

The idea of the Octopus Tree was enough to coax Rocky out into the rain but when we got there she was disappointed that it wasn't really an octopus. Luckily the downpour stopped to let the rest of us get a good look.

We also had to stop at the Tillamook cheese factory which, even though I've been there a bunch of times, still is super fun.

We saw 2 adult and 4 juvenile bald eagles, kingfishers, herons and all kinds of other cool birds.
Since this trip Rocky likes to tell anyone who will listen that we went to the coast and "Mommy wouldn't let me hold the ice cream cone." She also always mentions that she ate a corn dog and that she "really, really liked it."
I for one am glad that Brandon and I are filling the lives of our children with nature and learning.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

A Random Mix of Pics

Daisy finally has enough hair for some pigtails...well, not really, but we did some anyway.

Now that she's so grown up she has decided that she is going to start attending the university with her daddy.

Letting the girls play in the laundry baskets is one of my avoiding chores strategies. I mean, how can I wash clothes if the baskets are being occupied?

Dress up...

and dress down.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Cooking Show

Our daily schedule often includes the PBS cooking show that is on every day at 12:30. It is the perfect time when lunch is finished and I require Rocky to snuggle with me so we have a few minutes of wind-down time that lead into the 1:00 nap. Usually by that time she is tired enough that she will sit still, but I've been surprised at how much she has been influenced. Lately when she sees something good she'll say, "Oooh, we should make that."

One of her favorite things to do is to host her own cooking show. She'll be out on the playground stirring a bucket of wood chips and telling the other kids, who aren't listening, how to make posole (Mexican soup). She always picks a couple of leaves off the bushes and adds it saying that it isn't right until it has 'spices.' She's funny about spices because she always has to smell them like the cooks on T.V. Now a generous hand-me-down kitchen from Callie and a Rocky sized apron has added sophistication to her production. She's getting good enough that I think we should be able to start taping by the end of the summer. She always starts by saying, "Welcome to the cooking show. Today we are going to cook..." whatever is on the menu which usually consists of tortillas, spaghetti or eggs. I like when she does the tortillas because she will spend a lot of time patting them out. She's pretty creative about her recipes although I have noticed that she makes a disproportionate amount of cookies, and birthday cakes.
Daisy is always willing to be the designated taster, whether the food is edible or not.

We also try to give her some experience in the real kitchen. She and her dad made some gourmet chocolates. It turns out that stuffing toasted almonds into dates and dropping them in chocolate makes for an amazing treat. I think the girls preferred the pretzels, but that just meant more for us.

Hopefully this lasts and by the time she is 10 she'll be able to make dinner every night.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

One Small and Cute Excuse

If any of you have been wondering why there have been such big gaps between my blog posts, I have one excuse that is small, but makes a lot of messes...and her name is Daisy.
A few weeks ago Brandon had left the computer at home and was at one of his evening classes. I had just a couple of pictures I wanted to put up and I knew it wouldn't take long. Daisy and I were finished eating but Rocky was still working on her rice so I thought I'd be safe for a minute or two. Well, I clearly thought wrong. It did literally take two minutes, but when I turned around this is what I saw. Take note that this photo doesn't show the rice that was strewn all over the entire room.

It is bad enough that it happened once, but yesterday while I was getting all weepy about my friends I turned around and saw that she had done it again.

Apparently I'm not much of a multi-tasker.