Monday, August 29, 2011

2nd Grade

He's getting so big! This year's first day was more routine for him than ever before and that made it pretty seamless. School starts at 8:05 this year which is rather early for all of us these days. Bentley's internal alarm clock adjusted to closer to 8 am this summer rather than 7 am on the dime (as it has been for the past 7 years). It will take some adjusting waking earlier these first few weeks, but we are certainly ready for school and schedules and friends and learning!

Littlest sis was awake and ready to bid Bentley farewell this morning. Now she can give hugs and kisses to her 2 favorite guys before they leave together.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Raging Waters

The name has recently changed to Seven Peaks SLC but it's still the old Raging Waters it's always been. My little family had such a great time playing in the cold, cold water on this blazing hot day. Cute Bentley was even brave enough to try some big slides with Joseph. Livs and I took a quick break from the ever entertaining kiddie pool so we could watch Beans zoom down a steep slide on a yellow sled and race across the water--he was for sure the littlest kid trying it and he loved it (after a very nervous but daring first round :) Water parks are so fun! (and we used Groupon passes with Livs being free...loved that too).

Love our little "orphan baby" drying off in the warm, bright sunshine.

We had a lot planned for our Saturday:

And I'm pleased to say we got all of it done. I even added in cleaning the girls' carseats and covers (which dry beautifully in the hot summer air) and Joseph added in weeding and bush/plant trimming in the front yard after he mowed. Busy, perfect summer day.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Pool Day Fail

Last week of summer and finally a calm day to just play at the pool...but not so. We drove over to Draper to meet Joseph so we could lunch and swim with him when we discovered the pool is no longer open all afternoon but just in the evening. Boring. We drove to a park and played a bit instead (in swimsuits) but it was brutally hot out and my kids just wanted to get soaking wet. Solved that problem by driving all the way home and playing with the garden hose in the backyard. Even I needed a good head to toe soak with the freezing hose water and it felt so good.

Then the dark clouds rolled in with tons of thunder and lightning and eventually quite a rainstorm. Typical August weather around here.

We did however, succeed at making it to back to school night up at the elementary. It's fun to feel like we now run into many friendly faces and we know a lot of kids and parents from our ward, stake and now Bentley's 2 years of school. My kids were so funny and shy when they met their new teachers. I think it's cute, the mix of nerves and excitement surrounding the first few days of school. I am thrilled Beans' has a bestie, named Bruce, from both Kindergarten and 1st grade in his class again. And then he gets to make so many new friends! Cares doesn't know a soul in her class but she is amazing at meeting new kids and I am certain she will make a lovely transition when she finally starts Kindergarten (after Labor Day...)

Just a random note: I pulled some old books out of Cares' bookshelves the other day that I had as a kid and thought Bentley would like. He and Joseph just read Trouble for Trumpets and I had to steal some peeks at the wonderfully detailed illustrations in it. Such an odd story but I loved it as a kid.

Monday, August 22, 2011

20 Weeks

Half-way done with this pregnancy and feeling like it. I feel large in the belly, a little more awkward as I sleep at night, and have even had some contractions when I've pushed myself too much in a day. I do, however, have much more energy for sorting, organizing and cleaning projects and even went for a morning walk with all my kiddos today--Bentley rode his bike alongside the double stroller with both my girls in it (Cares was feeling under the weather today--turns out she has a full-blown ear infection and was rightfully feeling quite awful).

Here's to 20 more weeks...although I suspect it will be more like 17 or 18 but we'll see :)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Park City Weekend

To prolong birthday celebrations Joseph and I left our kids with his parents Friday evening, drove up to Park City and checked-in to a hotel right on the mountain, spoiled ourselves with an amazing dinner at Ruth's Chris steakhouse, shopped a little at the outlets, and came back to our room to watch The Tourist.

We slept in until 9 in the morning (heavenly), took our time eating breakfast and heading out (again to the outlets--this time armed with coupons we'd forgotten the night before) and ate a late brunch at Red Rock. Soon after, Nanny and Grandpa Neil met us at Kimball Junction where we gathered our kids back up and went back to our hotel. Our "hotel room" was really more of a big condo unit with 2 floors and 3 bedrooms which the kids immediately fell in love with. It was so nice to spread out and have plenty of room for all of us. We spent the afternoon at the hotel pool (Joe's sis and her fam joined us for a few hours of water playtime) and ate a yummy dinner at a lesser known Mexican joint in the Prospector Square area.

The kids were beat by 7 pm which was fine by us--we had ventured a whole 2 minute walk from our place to the Alpine Slides just as some random drops started falling and dark ominous clouds rolled in. They had shut down the lifts before we could even buy tickets so we promised the kids we'd ride the slides sometime this fall. Then it was early to bed and another movie night for Joseph and me (although I felt as beat as the kids!) Our girls suddenly came down with yucky coughs which picked up once they were sleeping and both of them woke up distressed several times during the night...made for quite a restless night but that seems to happen when we're away from home regardless.

We got home this afternoon after attending church at my sister's ward, put Livs in her crib for a nap, and then the rest of us snuggled up in our king bed and had a solid 90 minute snooze. With such big kids we barely fit but we were all asleep so quickly we hardly noticed. I love any chance we get to do that though (and they are sparse to say the least and who knows how many more we'll get)...felt so safe and snug with the whole house slumbering away and 4 of us sharing one bed...dreamy.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Thoughts Today

--Baking zucchini bread with produce from my mom's garden. It smells heavenly (and is making me so hungry.) Thanks Mom!

--Baby boy is kicking like crazy as I type. I think the heat of my laptop excites his lively little soul.

--Fighting (bickering, teasing, disagreeing) between Bentley and Cares is at an all time high this week. We (I) am anxious for school to start back up--those 2 need time apart and some new adventures.

--Planning on swimming tomorrow with the kids even though the pool basically opens right at Livs' naptime. We will push that nap back for the sake of wearing out my kids' hyper summer bodies--for hours on end if needs be!

--Getting so excited to sort through baby boy things. Tricky timing between my 2 boys in that Bentley was born in May in Phoenix while our new one will most likely arrive on a snowy, cold winter day. At least those cuddly newborn nightgowns work in any those.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Birthdays and Boys

To my tiny baby boy,

Today your daddy and I discovered, quite clearly thanks to the shot above, that you are another sweet son ready to join our family this winter. Hooray! To be honest, I have thought you were a boy for quite some time but just figured it was wishful thinking. After 2 darling daughters I truly wanted another son and really wanted Bentley to have a brother. I am so thrilled for you to meet him and adopt him as a best friend and hero in your life.

Today is your amazing daddy's 34th birthday and I hoped an ultrasound on his special day would be a fun thing to look forward to. That daddy of yours was beaming with pride as we discovered so much about you today, even over your long legs, wiggling fingers and solid "boyness." If there is ever a man you can look to for love, advice, for laughter or an example of righteousness it's your daddy. He is so excited to be a father this 4th time over and he will love and adore you just as he does your siblings. I think you are so lucky to have him as your father and hope you'll become like him as you grow-up.

Keep growing and kicking and enjoying life inside me. I was so relieved to hear that all is well with you today and that the doctor had absolutely no concerns. I love knowing you are perfect and content inside me for now, but we are all getting excited to meet you down the road. I love you already even though I have yet to snuggle you in my arms. Be good and grow big!

I love you,
Your Mommy

A quick pic from our night out with Nanny and Grandpa.
I hope my hubby felt truly adored and spoiled today!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Our Weekend

On Friday we babysat my nephew Connor while his mama was out of town. And by we I do mean all 3 of my kids and me--they each entertained him in his/her own way and it was very helpful. Here Livs and Connor explored Cares' Pet Vet kit:

This evening we met up with my parents and Heidi for dinner at Cafe Rio and a short hike in Little Cottonwood up to Lisa Falls:

I hate that my flash went off for this shot but the kids smiles were all pretty cute...

My big kids and Joseph ventured off way up the craggy side of the falls, leaving Livs and me to hang out down below

My baby showed me the art of tossing rocks into the river
My family finally returned to us, got soaked in the waterfall one last time and snuggled up next to their dry mommy:

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Liberty Park

More playtime before Heid and her kids head back home to MN. We met up at Liberty Park, first at the splash pad. Livs and Max weren't too interested in the water but loved the playground. Cares and Bentley jumped right in the water and then came to check out the little kids' snacks:

Then over to the seven canyons and rivers play area which was just too much fun--and all the kiddos loved it:

Max and Bentley were the boat masters, sending them downstream from different spots

and Cares was a great little boat catcher. I love how many times these guys played that game--up and down again and again.

Even tiny Sadie loved it in the cool water and climbed in and out of the small streams.

We planned on meeting Heidi at 10 this morning but we had another late night with LeBaron cousins and didn't get children to bed until well after 9:00 last night. Somehow, this morning, all 3 of my kids managed to sleep in past 9:00 am, which has never happened before! It felt amazing, but meant we were running much later than we had planned. By the time we got over to the canyons and streams today it was well-packed with moms and kids. We still found our own zone to play in but I'd love to get there with more room to float toys around.

Maybe we'll have to head back if we get bored before school starts...

Monday, August 8, 2011

Still No School

...but this morning we finalized registration for Caroline's ballet class and bought her first official pair of canvas ballet shoes. I get to sew the elastics down for her and everything (only my mom may appreciate the reverence I have for such a ritual...)

...this afternoon we ordered new backpacks for my 2 grade school kids from Lands End and final uniform pieces for Cares (Beans is still outfitted from last year, thank goodness).

...and we enjoyed a final lunch date with all 5 Horsley cousins as they begin school next week (of course my sister and I will be having more of these year-round :)

Summer is officially nearing its end, but we hope to make the most of our last weeks of freedom.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Silver Lake

Trying to soak up family time with John and Krista before they move to California.
Silver Lake was as lovely as ever, the temps amazingly cool for an August evening, and the little "hike" perfect for small kids and pregnant mamas.

If you head up that way, just be sure to bring shoes that can get muddy (the trail was still quite wet with run-off) and lots of bug spray. The mosquitoes were rampant--thank you Cutter for saving us last night.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Busy Again

I must be feeling better because we have had a whirlwind week.

Monday: Dentist appointment for Caroline and her first cavity (first cavity for any of my kids actually). She was super nervous for any shots but she sailed through. We lunched at my sister's house, I put Livs down for her nap, left my big kids playing with cousins and went to see my OB. Routine stuff but I now have an ultrasound scheduled in less than 2 weeks—very exciting.

Tuesday: BYU day with both of my sisters, my mom and all our kids. This outing has become an August tradition including a little art at the museum, shopping for blue and white gear at the bookstore, and lunch in Provo—usually Los Hermanos. We are such a huge group but have a lot of fun together.

Wednesday: My own dentist appointment in the morning followed by a trip to Costco with all 3 kiddos (I am eager for school and my time there with just my Livs). We came home and got to work on our house--organizing, cleaning and finally facing piles of papers and cluttered messes that I simply couldn't deal with the past few months.

Thursday: A day to stay home and get some laundry and more projects done around our house.

Friday: Water play date—again with both sisters and all our kiddos. The children had a blast together in the wading pool and on the slip'n'slide and with the good old fashioned garden hose. Classic summer fun.
(pics from's true I felt too lazy watching everyone from the shady grass to take any myself :)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

LP in Pictures

Heading out from the marina to Gunsight Canyon early in the morning

a shaded cousin Max and Bentley on the speed boat

One of many sea-doo rides

and one of many post-swim snuggles

family style tube ride (which Livs did not like)

curly-haired girl on the way to Rainbow Bridge

Hangin' on the houseboat...

literally at times

Olivia adored the water and jumped and swam and played in it as much as we'd let her

the whole crew getting ready to head out for a cliff jumping adventure

Family jump!

the ever entertaining sandbar near our houseboat, just a short swim away

cousin time on the couch

our whole LP crew

Riding the houseboat back in to the dock after a week of play.
Our trip seemed to fly right by! Everything about Lake Powell makes it such a great escape--the stunning landscape, the balmy water, the swimming and cliff jumping and tubing, the delicious food and yummy snacks, grown-up game time, cousins playing all around and hours on end to nap, read, and lay in the sun... we love it there.