8:31 am by Janelle. Filed under: News

How many kids can you fit in a miniature pool?! Luckily this is an upgrade from the last two summers, that pool was extra miniature…but still, it is looking a little crowded in there! I need to do a full post one of these days coming up but for now, this will do!

Happy first day of SUMMER VACATION!!!

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Garden Helper

7:30 am by Janelle. Filed under: News

My little helper in the garden…he’s really good at “picking” things :) Ha ha ha…..

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Just Rannin’ Around

1:24 pm by Janelle. Filed under: News

When I first moved to Utah, in 2002, I decided to take up running mainly because I had heard about the dreaded “freshman 15” and was determined to not let it happen to me so I thought I’d  pick running as my thing. I never thought I would still be doing it years later but I am and I love it! I always call it my “Prozac” because when I do it regularly life just seems more bearable and depression has a harder time of creeping up on me! I think that is why I have kept with it all these years. That isn’t the reason I was writing this…so anyway…in 2004 I decided to sign up for my first race, a 10K! I’d never run that far before (6.2 miles)! So I got up early on a Saturday in May and drove up Provo canyon and finished my first race! When I say race, I don’t mean I was really trying to win…I always just run to finish and have a good time…not necessarily to “race!” I’m not that fast :)

Sometime within the last few months I found my race shirt from that race up Provo canyon and was so proud that I had entered that race and then I thought about all the other times I had spent running or training for other runs and then I realized that this year would be 10 years since I ran my first organized run! I looked at a race calendar online and found another 10k that was the same weekend as the one 10 years ago so I thought (me being super cheesy sometimes) I would do a run on my 10 year race-iversary. haha. I know. I’m a weirdo.

My sister and I signed up for one in Folsom and I am SO glad we did! This was more of a trail run…which I didn’t think would be all that much different but it definitely had more hills (lots of hills!!), low trees, rocks, etc. to worry about; but it also had amazing views, wild flowers, and was just a beautiful run…way better than running on streets in my opinion!! Another thing I thought was awesome was that we ran most of the race on Folsom Prison grounds!! That’s someplace you don’t go very often…or ever! We weren’t waving at the inmates or anything…we weren’t that close…but it was on the outskirts of the prison property which is on a side of the river that I’ve never been on, so that was pretty neat. Kelsey and I wanted to stop every few feet, it seemed like, and take a picture..and we sort of did haha. I know if I didn’t know us I would probably think we were pretty annoying…but luckily the trails weren’t crowded so we weren’t by a ton of people when we were taking pictures…I think it helped the time go by though. Always looking at the pretty surroundings and stopping to remember it. That’s how I thought of it anyway :)

Okay, I’ve blabbed enough.  The point is, almost every time I run, I thank God that I have two legs that run, two eyes that see, a heart that can pump blood through my body, lungs that breathe in air…and the list could go on and on! I find our bodies to be such miracles! I feel so blessed to be able to have a body and that it can still run after 30 years of life and over 10 years of running!

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Crossing onto prison grounds!!!

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Out and About

8:50 am by Janelle. Filed under: News

Spring is such a short season here, but it is SO pretty! I’ve been trying to soak in all the green-ness and flowers while they are still around…this will all be brown and dusty soon!

On Facebook I saw a photographer in the area had gone to a place called Beaks Bight and it was FULL of wild flowers! Then I saw that it was at Folsom Lake, which is just a few minutes away from our house…so I was dying to go! I’ve lived here my whole life and gone to that entrance to the lake, but never to the end of the road. It was gorgeous!!! I want to go back (mostly because we didn’t go to the most flowery side of the lake…we took a different trail and I just want to sit and enjoy the flowers…I’m kind of weird maybe?) No one wanted to stop and take pictures, they wanted to get to the water (of course) but I forced them :) It was just too pretty, I couldn’t NOT take pictures!

Then, this weekend my mom and I decided to try another trail that is fairly close by. We went to Hidden Falls Regional Park in Auburn. Someone recommended the Poppy Trail, which leads down to a creek and a waterfall, so we took a map and followed the trail. This place was gorgeous too! After going about 100 yards Dallin wanted to be carried. Oh dear. I didn’t bring the backpack for him and I tried making him be tough for awhile…but finally gave in and picked him up. Then I noticed we were on switchbacks going down…which meant the way back would all be up. I kept wondering how Ada would do…and then wondering how it was going to be carrying Dallin all the way down…then all the way up. Every time Ada would complain we’d look around for something to tell her to get to…most of the time it was horse poop, “Let’s race to the poop!”  Finally we reached the creek and noticed there was a photography class going on and the whole creek area was filled with tripods and photo students! Bummer. We squeezed around them and sat down in a poison oak infested area, trying to dodge and discern between berry bushes and poison Oak. Somehow (and I don’t know how) no one got any rashes! I know for a fact that Dallin threw a fit and rolled onto a couple poison oak bushes..so I feel blessed that we are all rash free!

After the kids got bored we headed back up the trail. Luckily we saw lots of dogs and horses so that kept the kids excited. My mom and I were trying to find the shortest way possible back to the car and at one point we saw a little trail that went straight up the mountain…so when no one was looking (since there were signs that said keep on the trail…oops!) we huffed it, with kids in tow, straight up the hill! Needless to say, we got a good cardio work out that day :) Even with kids who didn’t cooperate the whole time, we had fun and it was so beautiful! I love being in beautiful places with people I love.

When we got back to the trail map we looked at our trail again and it was labeled as “difficult.” Well, next time maybe we will look at the level of difficulty before we head into a hike with little kiddos!  :)

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More Easter!!

12:56 pm by Janelle. Filed under: News

I Know, I know…more Easter?! Yes. I’ll make this quick.

We had a little brunch with one of my sets of grandparents on Saturday and then did an Easter egg hunt. On Easter morning we did another hunt, this time with no candy, just things related to the Savior and the events of the atonement and resurrection so we could remember why we have reason to celebrate, and then ended with another hunt at my other set of grandparent’s house…so if you are wondering why we have so many pictures of Easter egg hunts…that is why :) Normally we don’t have this many, but I guess we just got lucky this year!

Aunt Wyatte!! YAY!

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This picture below is a total Dallin face; he is such an animated kid! He was quoting Frozen, Kristoff saying to Sven “What’s the magic word? Pleeeeeease?”

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Dallin was looking for other things:

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Part of Easter…

9:42 pm by Janelle. Filed under: News

I figure if I do this in tiny increments I will actually get all the Easter photos up on here. Does it ever feel like this blog is on repeat all the time? Don’t we have have the same pictures every year?! I guess that what “traditions” are, right? Things you MUST do every year or something feels off? Egg decorating is one of them. Even though my kids won’t touch the actual hard boiled egg inside, it is always fun to dye them…and dye the table, our clothes, our fingers….everything!! Then I ate a lot of deviled eggs and egg salad…or got lazy and just cut them in half with a squirt of mustard…it’s gross, I know, but we’ve got some sort of thing about mustard in this house. We love it.

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We did add in some marshmallow egg decorating this year because I found these egg shaped Marshmallows…and I am a sucker for marshmallows covered in chocolate!

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Sunday Best

1:02 pm by Janelle. Filed under: News

I hope you all had a WONDERFUL Easter! we had a nice weekend visiting family and trying to remember the real reason we celebrate Easter! Of course, we did do some of the traditional things: Easter bunny/eggs, etc. (and I do have lots of pictures of all of that too!) but I am so grateful for my Savior and that he gave us ALL a gift we could not give ourselves and that we can be free of our sins and live again. He gave us hope.

Here we are getting ready to go to church on a beautiful Easter morning!

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7:22 am by Janelle. Filed under: News

It’s spring break! We don’t have anything big planned, no trips or anything, but I am trying to have at least one thing each day so that I don’t go crazy! Sitting around makes me a little nutty sometimes…and there’s only so many times the kids can ride their bikes around the backyard, jump on the trampoline, destroy my flowers…before we all go crazy. I’m not even sure why I am writing about spring break right now…because none of these pictures are from this week! I’ll save my fingers and write about that later!

For preschool, we went on a trip to the fire station. I was dreading bringing Dallin because he is such a TERROR lately! He can be hilarious and sweet, where you can’t get mad at him, and then he can be such a turd! Taking him anywhere these days just gets me negotiating and sweating and I’m not sure why I even take him anywhere anymore! A few of his sassy statements include: “Knock uh (it) off MOM!” “You be MEAN!” “Don’t hurt me mom!” (which is really fun in public when he’s yelling that!)  So, at the fire station this kid just wanted to do whatever HE wanted to do, which was, of course, not what everyone else was doing. Pretty much all I remember about the trip was trying to make sure he didn’t run into the busy road next to us, lots of back arching and screaming when I tried to pick him up, and trying not to look frazzled. So glad it’s over, and maybe one day I will be the lady who looks at a mom with a tantrum throwing child at the grocery store and says “I remember those days, they’ll be gone before you know it” Even though in the moment, those words aren’t really all that comforting, I know they mean well and that it’s true. This is a phase. It wont last forever and my kids won’t be little forever. So cherish it….even the naughty tantrum times.

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Someone else was ready to leave too.

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Spring gets me in the mood for sidewalk chalk:

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Chalk bum!

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Family Fun

2:45 pm by Janelle. Filed under: News

We just said good-bye to Shaun’s brother and his cute girlfriend, Becca. They came to visit us, which we love visitors (hint to any of our distant friends and family…..) so it was fun to hang out with them and show them some of our favorite spots. I’m sure I’ve post on here before about the “Newt Trail.” It’s actually called Independence Trail, and it is in Nevada City. up in the Sierras. When we were younger we’d always take this hike and there is one point where you get to this cascading creek and if you go at the right time of year, it is full of little orange newts. We go almost every year with our kids, and apparently we have gone at the wrong time because there have never been newts! Shaun just thought I called it that……just because? I was bound to let me kids play with the newts this year, so we went early and took Taylor and Becca. Well, bummer for us, we drove the hour to get there and then we saw caution tape! The west trail was closed (which is the one we take) due to a sink hole! Up in that area, during the gold rush times, there were lots and lots of mines and so now these sink holes happen when the earth just sinks into one of these mines! That kind of freaks me out, and I wouldn’t want to chance sinking into some bottomless pit.

Luckily, there is an East trail (why did i never know that?) and so we went along that. There were some really neat bridges and walkways where you felt like Swiss Family Robinson or some secret jungle tree house, but there wasn’t really an exciting thing at the end. We found a picnic table and ate some snacks! That was the end for us!

After we finished our pretty hike, Preston and Ada had swim lessons where Preston got a ribbon for swimming across the whole pool and his teacher said he’s never seen someone progress so quickly! We’ve been trying to get him to learn to swim for years now. I knew he could do it quickly if one of us wasn’t teaching him and he really has learned SO fast! I am proud :) Ada just started, and I know she’ll do awesome too!

I don’t really have other pictures from the weekend but we tried to cram in a quite a few things and now I need a nap :) Thanks Taylor and Becca for coming out! And thanks for leaving the cookies (Becca makes some amazing PB cookies) and for all the playing and fun! The kids kept asking where they were when we got out of church, like they should be waiting in the car for us.

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10:20 am by Janelle. Filed under: News

As I have mentioned before, I feel blessed for so many reasons! I am always trying to show my gratitude to God for all the blessing I have and all the people I have in my life, though it seems that I can’t do enough to show that gratitude! One of the things I feel so blessed for is my, and Shaun’s, parents and grandparents. Up until fairly recently we have had ALL of our grandparents around to see their great grand children! Though two of them have passed on, we still have 7 grandparents here with us! They have all been such amazing examples to me, even the ones I have only known since being married to Shaun. They’ve all shown great strength through trials, lived lives of service and great faith. I only hope I can be as amazing as many of them are!

A couple Sundays ago we fixed dinner and all went up to spend time with my mom’s parents. If anyone has lived a selfless life, it’s my grandma! She cannot just sit still and do nothing. She must be doing something for someone or helping in some way. The day before she went in for open heart surgery, she was feeding the missionaries from our church! Amazing. I’m glad I brought my camera so I could get a picture of 4 generations of girls. One day Ada can have this picture and I hope she realizes the importance of families. I love all these girls :)

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