Saturday, July 24, 2010

Girls camp recap

I survived! It was a crazy week but a lot of fun. The last night of camp some of the girls told me they didn't want to go home, so I will count that as a success!

The stake ended up being in charge of a lot of activities this year and we did some fun things. We got to tie dye, decorate hats with homemade buttons, canoe on Tibble Fork, go hiking, etc. We had some great firesides too... my particular favorite was the one given by sister Liz Lemon Swindle (30Rock fans--how awesome is it that her name is Liz Lemon?) She is an artist who paints Christ in many of her pieces. Here is her Web site if you are interested.

My favorite part of camp was the bishopric night on Thursday. Our bishopric went all out. Our camp theme was "Daughter of a King" and they (and their wives) planned a royal feast for us for dinner. We were in the middle of the woods eating a five-course meal on our bishop's wife's china! They had Martinelli's for us, silver candle sticks, name cards, cloth napkins, etc. Did I mention our bishopric dressed up in tuxes and escorted the young women to the table? Their cute wives (two of which are pregnant) were dressed up too and were even wearing heels.

Here was the menu each of us had on our plates:

If you can't read it it says:
Chilled cucumber soup
Mixed greens with pan-roasted pears, shaved parmesan, and toasted almonds in a light vinegarette
Mango sorbet (to cleanse the palate of course!)
Honey-lime Tri-tip steak or Marinated grilled chicken
Baked potatoes
Homemade Rolls
Vanilla bean cheesecake
All of the food was amazing, but I'll tell you what... I am still dreaming about that cheesecake. I am not joking when I say it is the best cheesecake I have ever eaten. I didn't think it was possible to top Cheesecake Factory's dulce de leche cheesecake, but trust me when I tell you this beats it! There were white chocolate shavings on top and it was made with real vanilla bean. I will stalk the bishop's wife until she gives me the recipe.

Other fun highlights:
-Getting to know the girls in our ward. They are strong girls who face a lot of difficult challenges and I came away from camp really caring about them and wanting the best for them.
-Sitting around the campfire and singing songs with our bishop on the guitar. He sang a really sweet Jack Johnson song about angels for us. We also sang funny songs mostly made up by Megan (one of the YW counselors and honestly one of the funniest people I have ever met).
-Canoeing and watching our bishop splash everyone with his paddle and tip over the canoes with our girls in them. He was ruthless!
-Thursday night testimony meeting
- Our ward skit. We made up a song and had the bishop prance across the stage as a Gazelle with ribbon dancers tied to his head with a tube sock
-Giant s'mores with the famed marshmallows I blogged about awhile back
-Singing camp songs that I hadn't sung in 10 years and had forgotten
-Winning the award for "Prettiest princess camp"

Not so fun highlights:
-We got rained on the first night and our tents ended up not being waterproof (even though they are supposed to be). I literally climbed into a soaking wet sleeping bag and lay on a soaked through pillow. I also had drips of water falling onto my face all night long-- seriously something you'd see in a movie. Obviously there was no sleep that first night and we had to be up by 5:15 a.m. the next morning for a sunrise hike.
-We walked an unreal distance each day-- I am glad for the exercise, but our campsite was the furthest away and it wasn't very convenient when we had to hike to the bathrooms and activities several times a day.
-I worried about bears the entire time. As I said, our camp was farthest away from the rest of the stake and we had candy all over our campsite. No bears, but we did have a raccoon visitor the last night of camp who loved the cheesecake as much as I did!

On another note, I had a lot of fun decorating our campsite:

Castle painted onto a sheet and hung at the entrance to our camp
I gave my right pointer finger for this castle... the tip of my finger is still numb from holding down the spray paint nozzle! Note: Jackson did not attend camp. He was just there helping me set up the night before.

Camp chair "thrones"
Each throne had the girl's name on it
The assistant camp director made these really cute baskets for the girls for secret sister stuff, etc.
I made these medieval flags with the YW values on them

It was a great week and I am grateful I was able to go. I am so thankful my mom was willing to come to Utah and babysit Jackson for the week so I could go without reservations. Jackson behaved and seemed to really enjoy his time with her. I'm not going to lie though, it's good to be home!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Fourth

We had a great time celebrating the Fourth of July in Idaho Falls and Island Park!

Waiting for the fireworks
Hiking in Island Park


-Birthday party for our niece Remington. Lots of good food, including the best gf cupcakes I've ever eaten-- in fact one of the best cupcakes I've ever eaten--period!
-Time with family. My nephew Max was so cute on the Fourth watching the parade. He did not stop waving his flag the entire time.
-Breakfast on the Boulevard with my family and old neighbors and ward members. I look forward to the rhubarb syrup every year!
-Model T rides. Jackson joined his cousins Hayley and Max in throwing candy down the parade route before it started.
-The Idaho Falls parade. I've always loved going and it's even more fun going with a son of my own. We scored at the parade this year with tons of candy, ice cream, and tennis balls.
-BBQ with homemade lemon sorbet and chocolate ice cream.
-Fireworks. They are always amazing and we scored great parking this year. Plus, Julie brought glow sticks which is always a good thing. Jackson enjoyed the show and kept saying "wow!" He was pretty tired about halfway through though.
-Island Park: fourwheeler rides, campfire with s'mores, pinball, walks, seeing a buffalo during a quick drive in the park, hiking by coffeepot with my family (even though it turned out to be more like rock climbing!)


-Colder than normal temperatures. We were freezing at the beginning of the parade. Luckily it warmed up and the afternoon was nice.
-Not enough time! I left wishing I had a few more days to spend at the cabin.

Hope you all had a great Fourth of July. As for me, girls camp is next week so time to get back to reality!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

18 months!

It's hard to believe he's already this old!
Stats as of a few weeks ago:
Height: 33.5" (90th percentile)
Weight: 30 lbs (95th percentile)
Head: 19" (69th percentile)

A few more recent pictures (sorry, some are sort of fuzzy from the cell phone):

Sporting his new sweet shades he picked up at Cabela's:

FYI there is no air bag in the passenger side of the miata... nonetheless, this is not a common occurance (though Jackson would like it to be!)

Some tidbits about Jackson at 18 months:
Note: I realize not everyone is interested in this stuff but post mostly for Sean and I's enjoyment :)

-He will repeat (or at least try) any word you ask him to, but some of his favorites are: bubble (says all day, every day), mama, daddy, hooray, potato, purple, box, baby, no, hello, hi, bye bye (buh-bye), door, apple, ball, fish, banana, water (wah-wah), amen, night night, juice, Jesus, ear, eye, cheese
-Has 12 teeth
-Wears size 2T and size 6 shoe
-Hates nursery, but is making slow progress
-Loves to read-- especially Dr. Suess's "The Foot Book" and "Oh the Thinks You Can Think"
-Loves the Miata and every time we go into the garage he makes a "zoom zoom" sound and wants to go for a ride
-Loves all buttons, switches and lights
-Loves to swing
-Climbs everything
-Loves playing basketball with Sean. Also likes baseball and just learned how to tackle
-Loves swimming and will jump to us from the side of the pool
-Takes a 2-3 hour nap everyday around 1pm
-Sleeps at night from 9pm to 7:30-8:30am
-Still a great eater. Some of his favorite snacks and meals are yogurt, string cheese, oatmeal, Teddy Grahams, waffles, Otter Pops, fruit, fruit snacks, raisins, crackers, tomato stuff (sauces, soup, etc.), quesadillas, beans (not green)
-Feeds himself with a spoon and fork and when he is full he proceeds to throw the rest of his food on the floor unless I'm quick enough to stop him
-Can drink out of a cup on his own
-Points to the sky every time he hears an airplane
-Still shares very well and is always trying to feed us his food
-Likes to play steamroller with his dad
-Gets VERY excited when Sean comes home. If we are outside he runs to the car and if we are inside he runs and waits at the gate
-Still gives us kisses, but not every time you ask him
-Bows his head when we say prayers and says "Mae-men!" (Amen)
-Points to: Head, ears, eyes, nose, chin, teeth, tongue, belly, fingers, toes, bum, feet
-Always counting to three but often starts at number two
-Loves the theme song to "Little Einsteins"
-Laughs every time he passes gas. When we laugh he tries to do it again :)
-Walks down stairs on his own
-Tries to help me with laundry and making the bed, etc. Always trying to imitate what we're doing
-LOVES buckles. Buckles himself in his high chair and can do the top buckle of his car seat
-Loves the movie "Cars"