Thursday, January 29, 2015

cross country skiing

 On Martin Luther King day, we decided to head up the canyon and try cross country skiing. We haven't had much snow this winter, so we weren't sure how the skiing would go, but we headed out anyway.
 The mountains were stunning on the drive up, with frozen waterfalls, and sunbeams shining over the tops of the peaks.
We took my brother's kids because everything is better with cousins.
 Ashley hated it at first, until we found a hill with deep ski grooves that kept her skis from going all over the place. The kids hiked up and skied down over and over, making the grooves nice and deep.
 I didn't care for skiing much. Just like tubing, I hate going too fast and out of control. But it was fun to hang out with the family anyway. And really great exercise!
Everyone was so hot from all that exercise afterwards that we got Creamery ice cream, which happened to be there tempting the kids in the ski-rental place. Josh was a little upset we didn't do anything to celebrate Martin Luther King like we did back in The Swamp (where King had actually visited), but he got over it pretty fast when he saw ice cream.

Saturday, January 24, 2015


 This month we've spent a ton of time in various basketball courts around town, both for practice for Ethan and Josh, and then also games for both of them.
 As you can see, Ashley has been thrilled about all of those nights and days on the court.
 These are all blurry because I had to sit pretty far back and my phone has a bad zoom. But Ashley had her geography bee. She studied hard for several weeks.
She didn't win, but we were proud of her for being brave enough to try! 
 Spaceman Josh showed off his spaceman costume that matched his spaceman Lego.
Josh asked me to take this serious picture of him, and asked if I could hang a flag behind him. Too bad we won't have a flag... 
A wonderful friend (and excellent walking-buddy) from The Swamp came to town for some family business, but we were lucky enough to get to see her while she was here! So nice to see a piece of Florida in the middle of winter! (too bad my picture was super blurry.) 
 I always want to run outside and take a picture of the pink skies, the bright moons, and the mountains, but they never look as amazing as they do in real life :(
but I keep trying.
 The kids love to exercise along with us whenever we're exercising. Here Chris is running with Ashley to some really loud music, and Josh is getting his groove on with the spinning computer chair.
 One of my favorite times of the day is when Ethan and I hop in the car to pick up the younger kids. I always joke that I wish he could drive and just go get them himself, but secretly we both like hanging out together for a half-hour, chatting about his day, and life in general. He's a great teenager and I feel lucky to have him in my family!
 We are really bad about sending actual letters to my parents in Japan because we get to talk to them quite a bit over Facetime. But look how excited they are about the strange pictures my kids sent to them. We'll need to do it more often. Josh's picture has a volcano out the window, and Ethan's is a ninja santa. I can't see what Ashley's was...Sorry Ash. I'm sure it was really sweet and cute.
 Ethan went on a Klondike camp. He was supposed to sleep in a snow cave, but we haven't had enough snow this winter to make that happen. So he slept in a tent, cooked over fire, helped build and pull a sled, and had a good time doing it.
 Last Sunday Ethan was supposed to be downstairs reading his scriptures in the morning, but when he came upstairs, he showed me what he'd REALLY been doing. Building a mobile I-Spy game. He did read later, though, so it's all good. And funny.
Ashley made a family news letter with lots of advertisements.
It's a good thing we have her or we'd never know what's going on around here.

The end of catch-up...for now.

Monday, January 12, 2015

pool in black and white

 Josh has really enjoyed using his Christmas present pool pass. It's freezing when we go outside all wet, but it's worth it to swim for a while. My camera was set for black and white, so that's what you get :)
 Every hour, everyone has to get out of the pool for five minutes.
 I call this picture "no running." I had a cold and didn't feel like swimming (or running), but then I regret not bringing my swimsuit just in case. It's not so fun sitting around waiting while the kids swim. But the warm moisture was nice on my dry, coughy lungs.
This guy makes me laugh. He always wears his goggles in a way that bends his ears down. That would drive me crazy, but it doesn't bother him at all.