Monday, July 21, 2008

Mini Vacation

We just had a great trip up to Phoenix this last weekend. We left Friday morning and got up to the temple just after 10 am. Steve and I took turns in the temple and with the kids out in the visitors' center. The timing was perfect and we were done at about noon. I let the kids take pictures and so here are a few of their good shots:

Then we went and ate lunch at Delux. We had some seriously delicious burgers and fries and then shared this dessert that was a banana split molten lava cake HUGE bowl of goodness. From there, we went to our hotel. It was a Hyatt Place by the airport and since it is HOT summer in Phoenix it was a great deal. And it was probably the best hotel we had stayed in all together. It was a suite with 2 double beds, then a room divider, and a big sectional on the other side. A big flat panel TV was in the middle and could swivel either way. There was also space by the desk to put the crib up for Seth and so it just gave us great space. So we relaxed and then went swimming for a few hours.

After we were changed, we went to a store called Steve & Barry's. All the stuff in the store is $8.98 or less. I was particularly happy to find some good tennis shoes (Eleven - the Venus Williams brand) and so bought 2 pairs. And then Steve and I just got a few other things. We were still mainly full from the huge lunch so we just stopped and ate a little at Fazzoli's.

We headed back to the hotel and hooked up the DVD player to the TV and watched Nanny McPhee with the kids. It was very cute as both Rhianna and Rand fell asleep on our laps on the couch in the middle of the show.

Saturday morning we ate the continental breakfast at the hotel and then went swimming again for another hour. After we were all dressed and ready, we went to the Arizona Science Center. They had a big exhibit called Grossology - all about the inside working of people and animals. I made boogers, we got to play different games having to do with body parts, and just saw/smelled/touched stuff that is kind of gross. Rand liked the poop.

Rhianna loved the Forces of Nature exhibit on a different floor. It was a simulation of things like hurricanes, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, tornadoes, wildfires, lightning, etc. It showed videos of these things actually happening and then it would make the floor shake or wind blow or heat lamps or whatever to give you the experience. She did it 2 times and wanted to stay to keep going more and more. You can tell from the picture that she is happy!

We then ate lunch and drove home. We just had a fun time together and everyone was so happy and kind the whole time. It was a great little mini vacation.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Summerhaven and Circus

Just wanted to report on two of our summer fun activities. Summerhaven is a tiny town at the top of Mount Lemmon. It took about an hour or so to drive up the mountain along a fun, and very windy, road. It was fun hearing the kids comments about the view out their window. Although Rand did start to say that he was tired of driving so far.

We decided to go up the mountain because we had heard that it was very pretty, and also that because of the increased elevation it was a lot cooler.

We had a nice time walking around the town, going into some of the stores. We had lunch at a pizza place there. We planned to go hiking after lunch, so we piled the kids in the van and drove to a hiking trail that would permit a stroller. However, by the time we got there both Seth and Rand were fast asleep. Stephanie was a little disappointed, but overall it was still a nice time.

Here are some pictures we took while we were there.

The circus was also a lot of fun. It was really neat to watch the kids expressions. The circus had acrobats and animal acts and clowns. It was quite a spectacle. The kids seemed to like the clowns and the animals the best. Stephanie and I were really impressed by some of the acrobats and physical performers. We didn't bring our camera so we don't have any pictures, but a good time was had by all. Rand did fall asleep right at the end of the first act, but we woke him up after intermission and fortunately, he woke up happy.

Thursday, July 3, 2008


Rhianna has some exciting news to share!! Here it is in her own words:

I lost my tooth! It is so amazing. Guess when it was lost? 2008 July 3rd. I lost it in my room. It feels like I'm a big girl that is 6. I want to tell everybody that it feels so cool to have a tooth that's not in your mouth. You pretty much want to be careful so it doesn't really get lost and you can't find it anymore. Now hurray there's another one coming out in a while. It's great! Hurray! I saved this part for last because it's the specialist part of the news - I lost it right before I went to bed and I showed all my family members. Too bad Seth wasn't old enough to understand it. Now I will let my mom share her thoughts about it.

Back to Stephanie: This tooth has been wiggly for a while. But it really started moving around this week. And I noticed just earlier today that the color was starting to change. Steve and I both tried pulling at it a little bit, but it hurt Rhianna and bled a little bit and so then we just told her to keep at wiggling and pulling it (by the way I never liked pulling my own teeth - I made my mom pull a bunch of them - and so I probably didn't do too great of a job pulling at Rhianna's either). It is out now and she is so cute!! Now we will wait on tooth #2 - the one right next to it started to wiggle about a week or so ago...

Also, Rand didn't want to be left out, so here is what he had to say about this momentous event.

I'm happy that my sister has a loose tooth. That is so exciting! I surprised myself when I saw that her tooth was so bloody. I am so happy that when I get six I am going to lose a tooth too. Okay that is nice. It was so cool and then I broke the glasses (editorial comment, he broke an old pair of his dad's glasses that were on the desk) and I am proud that my sister has a loose tooth and the roots came out and were stuck to her gums.