Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Well I certainly hope it's progressing. The dirt hills are bigger the holes are deeper, the grass is more trampled, there's more equipment and pipe laying around. I hope this means they're actually getting the job done.

Although to be honest Gideon would probably be okay if they left the dirt mountains for him to play in. (I don't want to look at them in my backyard forever though.)

Still they tell us that they should be done next week. Fingers crossed.

(And yes, that's twig Parker's eating. I figure it's just extra fiber in her diet.)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Breaking in the new Suit

On Monday while we were out shopping, Gideon found a new "CARS" bathing suit. (Sidebar, he's entering a second CARS phase because of the new movie coming out this week. He's soooooooo psyched about and about all of the new CARS stuff to be found around lately.) Anyway, the suit (which came with a matching tank top) was on sale 30% off and since he needed a new one anyway (the one he wore last year was still a 24 month size) we went ahead and bought it. Naturally he wanted to wear it right away. So that night he had to wear it in his bath just to break it in.

Yesterday we let him play in the sprinkler for a while so he got to wear it there too. Finally today the new suit was worn on it's first official outing. We went with friends down to Ross Park to play in the water. And boy did we ever have fun!

Gideon was fearless as usual when it came to running and playing in the water, so it's a good thing we were able to talk Grandma Cindy into tagging along so that one of us could always be watching him.

It took Parker a little while to decide whether or not she wanted to play in the water, but once she finally warmed up to the idea she was practically part fish.

She really loved it when Grandma took her int he lazy river. (That's one of Gideon's favorite things too.)

And yes, just to prove I was there, floppy beach hat and all:

We all had a great day and can't wait to do it again! I'm excited for the new aquatic center to open in Rexburg though, so we don't have to drive quite so far!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


Back in October the city Right of Way office stopped by to tell us that there was a sewer line which runs under our back fence in desperate need of repair. Soooooo that meant that this summer sometime they'd be digging up parts of our backyard. Sure it's inconvenient, but I'd rather have a few weeks of inconvenience than a backed up sewer any day.

Anyway yesterday the project officially started. The guys working have been really nice so far. They even let Gideon play on the giant dirt mountain as they were packing up yesterday. But how could they stop him? This is like every kid's dream right?

Anyway the view from our front and back windows right now isn't very pretty. We get to look at equipment out the back and a porta potty out the front, but oh well.

After a much needed bath we went over to see Nana and Granpa last night. They just returned from a week long visit to Washington and naturally they brought surprises for the kids. One of them was a bow & arrows for Gideon. Upon seeing them he immediately proclaimed, "Me shoot moose!" And for the rest of the evening that's all he talked about. I swear where to kids come up with this stuff?

Besides playing in the dirt & planning moose hunts, Gideon & are going to celebrate this first day of summer in our grand tradition. Weekly movie dates to the kids' movies at the cheap seats! YAY! Maybe next year Parker will be old enough to join us, but for right now, it's still a mommy/son date!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Finding Ways to Fill the Hours

So as of the first of this month Travis is working again steadily. Of course it's a huge blessing considering the 5 month lay-off with sporadic weeks of work that weren't really sustaining us. The only problem is that none of the local or non-traveling jobs panned out, so he's back on the road. And as has become the norm with this company, plans seem to change mid-flight. He left for a 4 day job and recertification in Utah and 3 weeks later, still hasn't made it home and is actually in Eastern Wyoming at the moment. It's been frustrating to say the least, but I won't complain because the work is appreciated.

As for the kids & myself, we're doing our best to fill the hours. This week is especially boring because Trav's parents are out of town and mine are scurrying to get ready for their 18 month assignment in Louisiana, so we really feel like we're on our own. Gideon reminds me at least 14 times a day that he's "Daddy's Boy" not Mommy's boy and when Parker's frustrated with me she breaks into her choruses of "Da da da da da da!" After having him home for so long it's been tough on all of us readjusting to being without him. It would be easier if we were having a real summer, but we haven't yet been able to string more than 2 nice days together in a row. We've had tons of rain and even more wind. Still, when those nice days happen, it feels almost magical. Today was close to perfect (except for the high winds, but that almost seems to be normal lately. The temps rise and so do the winds!)

Anyway we took advantage of temperatures in the 70's and met some friends for a morning at the zoo (before it got too windy. 40mph gusts today guys! SOOOOOO sick of wind!)

That's Gideon with Maddy & Emily. They're all just a few months apart in age and so are the younger siblings. Maddy's baby sister Arya is 11 months old, Parker almost 9 months & Emily's brother Camden is almost 8 months. So it was fun getting them all together and giving the mommies a chance to talk.

Gideon is pretty much always the fearless leader. But Emily is usually quick to follow.

That's a really fat bunny the zookeeper is holding for the kids to pet. Thanks to Aunt Jesse and her pet bunny Lola, Gideon is a pro with bunnies.

Brushing the goats.

Gideon was going to pose on the big chicken, but informed me it was too hot!

He did however climb aboard the lion without hesitation.

This is actually one of the kids' favorite features at this zoo. The lion head water fountain. We hit it about 4 times today I think.

Gideon told me as we were getting ready this morning that he was scared of the lions, but once we got there and he saw how far away the lion was in it's cage, he didn't seem to be very afraid at all.

I thought the baby zebra was very cute personally.

Emily is Gideon's very best friend. I don't think I ever knew what the term "they get along like gangbusters" meant until I saw he and Emily together. Unlike with some other kids I never have to break up squabbles between them. They always seem to work it out on their own and they seriously think exactly alike most of the time. It works out well for everyone since Emily's mom, Brooke, has become one of my very dearest friends over the last year. We are so very grateful to have them in our lives!

Don't get me wrong, he likes Maddy too, but there's just a special connection that he and Emily seem to have. And I enjoyed getting to spend time with Maddy's mom, Annie today. I'd never actually been around her much before this morning, so it was fun to get to know her better.

And just in case you're wondering, yes our princess P was there too. She spent most of the morning riding around in the stroller just enjoying the view. Once we stopped at the picnic area for lunch I let her get out and crawl around a little.

Naturally she was off the blanket and eating the grass almost instantly. That's just what she does.

She FINALLY gave in and fell asleep just as we were leaving the zoo. It would have been perfect timing except that we weren't headed straight home, we had some errands to run, so she didn't get nearly as much of a nap as she needed. Oh well, maybe she'll sleep well tonight.

I ruined Gideon's day several times today. The first was when we left the zoo. He definitely wanted to stay longer, but it's a small zoo and we'd already seen everything (some of it twice.) Then I made the mistake of putting his cheetos in a ziploc baggie instead of just bringing the entire big bag of cheetos for our picnic. And then I drug him into Sam's Club and almost left without getting him a hot dog. (This is something he knows from his many trips to Sam's with Trav's parents. They apparently always get hot dogs once they've made their purchases and so now for him it's an essential part of the Sam's Club shopping experience.)

On this particular point I was happy to capitulate. We weren't in a rush to get home and hot dogs at Sam's are cheap. Not only did he get a hot dog & root beer for $1.50, we also got an ice cream which cost us a whopping .97

That's when I committed the cardinal sin. As he was getting full and spending more time playing and chatting than eating, I was getting antsy to get out of Sam's and get on with our day. I told him repeatedly it was time to go and asked him if he was going to finish his food or if I should throw it away. Eventually he said he'd carry his drink to the car so I picked up what was left of his hot dog and ice cream & pitched them. OH MY GOSH! The tears shed over the trashed ice cream were devastating. Literally you'd have thought I completely broke his heart. All the way out of the store I was getting "those" kind of "looks" from people. I'm not used to this because Gideon doesn't often have meltdowns or tantrums. I can only think of one or two his whole life actually.

Fortunately it didn't last long because once we got to the car and were on our way he fell asleep in less than 3 minutes. He ended up taking a 3 1/2 hour nap today and probably wouldn't have woken up if I hadn't gone in his room to put away some laundry. The downside is that he slept so long he didn't want to go to bed until after 10 tonight.

We're at that stage of his life where "To Nap or Not to Nap" is the major question each day. On days he doesn't get a nap, he's in bed at 8pm easy. No questions, no fights. He's ready. (And usually asleep within minutes.) He sleeps great through the night and wakes up happy. But he's a complete bear to deal with through the late afternoon and early evening and some days it's a fight to keep him awake until a decent bedtime hour. On the other hand, when he does get a nap, he's much more pleasant in the afternoon and evening, but bedtime becomes a major battle. He's up and down and up and down and I feel like an evil Ogre because I turn into this ranting and raving Beast who tries everything from threats to bribes to get him to go to bed. And many times I give up and just let him stay up until he crashes because I run out of energy. And even when he finally does go to sleep, he doesn't seem to sleep as well through the night and usually ends up in our room at some point, where the question becomes, let him stay here with me, or cart him back to his room? To be honest, it ends up being about a 50/50 split on that one. Some nights I'm just too tired. So yeah the joys of having a 3 year old when you're the single parent in the house trying to keep everything together.

As for other news, pretty Parker has learned to pull herself up and she's mastered going up stairs. So I've had to break out the baby gate and start closing the doors to keep her from tumbling back to the bottom. (I've tried to show her how to go back down, but she's just not getting it yet.)

Still I suppose if the conundrum of naps for a 3 year old and having to climb over baby gates are my life's biggest concerns right now, then I don't have anything to complain about. In the meantime, we'll keep finding ways to fill the hours until daddy comes home.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Dam Marathon

So a year ago I somehow wrangled, cajoled, begged & pleaded enough to con all five of my sisters into running the Teton Dam Marathon Relay with me. We had the best time ever! We may have been the last relay team to cross the finish line, but we had the most fun.

This year was much lower key. With 3 sisters pregnant there was no way that was happening again. So we had a surrogate sister, Eden run. My mom ran the 5K, our friend Eden ran the full marathon (she and her mom drove down from Spokane and stayed with us last night) and I ran the half marathon. All of our races started at different times so the only picture of my mom is this one here prior to her start. My dad & Eden's mom, Jenna dropped her off and took my kids and headed up to the marathon route to see if they could find me or Eden.

They caught Eden at around the 14 mile mark. At this point I was in front of her just because the half marathon starts an hour later and joins the marathon at around their 17 mile (our 4 mile) mark. I knew Eden would catch me eventually though. This may have been her first marathon but she's a 20 year old who was on a cross-country scholarship at BYU-Hawaii.

The family found me at somewhere near my 8 mile mark and informed me that Eden was probably only a half mile behind.

Gideon was excited to see me and since I wasn't on track to break my best time at this distance anyway, I stopped for a quick kiss and let him run with me for a while.

So I've learned over the course of many races that the girlier you dress, the less seriously people take you as a runner. This is an advantage for me for two reasons. 1.) When I'm well trained and in good form, I surprise people. I'm not fast but I'm very consistent and so slower runners, run/walkers and a lot of first timers who pick me off in the first couple of miles, generally end up getting passed by the chica in the pink and purple with the sparkly fingernails. Today it was an advantage for a different reason which leads me to point 2.) People have very low expectations of someone who dresses so girly at races. So today when I was't in my top form and the hills kicked my butt, it was okay. No one expected much of me anyway, so it was just an accomplishment to finish.

Here's Eden coming up fast! I should tell you Gideon adores Eden. He calls her "My Edee!"

Gideon told me, "Mom, I run the running race with you!" He was so cute!!!

I was not at all surprised when Eden caught up to me with about 2 miles to go. We jogged together for long enough for the family to get a picture and then she took off! I'd have been disheartened if it had been anyone but Eden. But since I love her to pieces and because she's such a great runner, it didn't bug me at all.

This is most of what the terrain looks like on this run. Up and down lots of rolling hills through spud fields.

Oh he found me again! Lots of hugs and kisses and a few more yards of having my running buddy.

And of course he had to run into the finish line with me. I was so far off my goal pace by this time, I didn't mind him running in with me. And he spent most of the afternoon wearing my medal around telling everyone about "his" running race.

So as it turns out, my mom ran/walked her way to a personal best in the 5K. Not bad for a woman who only just started training again this past Monday. And Eden had a heck of a marathon debut. She took 3rd place in her age division, only losing to two girls she knew from school. (In fairness she drove down from Spokane yesterday, was up late last night, isn't feeling her very best, and had a super gnarly blister the last few miles. So this is a girl who could totally tear it up if she's in top form! I mean she already did and she's not 100%)

Like last year we took a picnic lunch and waiting near the finish line to cheer on the last finishers.

Eden didn't know she'd won an age group award until someone came over to where we were picnic-ing & told her she'd missed the medal ceremony. So she ran over and grabbed it and we applauded for her.

YAY! Another race in the books! Can't wait for the next one!