Why do I have a picture of a dog on my blog? That's a good question. The dog pictured here is Tracker and he was the source of fear for me on more than one occasion. He's trimmed up here, but usually his hair is grown over his eyes and he looks like a giant mop. He used to greet me at my car door when I pulled in from work late at night, big hairy creature scared the heck out of me! He's really a gentle giant though:)
I also got to spend time with one of my best friends from college. Her daughter and Taj hit it off quite well:) She showed him the ropes on stairway safety...he didn't even fall once, thank heavens! They even shared a cookie together, now that's a true friend!
This is what I call the swirling torrent of death. Those steps are steeper than you think and you'll come over the side of that thing if you're not careful. I laughed at Brannon coming down it with Taj because I've never seen a grown man look like a beetle on its back with legs in the air and spinning in circles all the way down. They nearly came off it backwards. Karma came around the next day when I took Taj down it and ended up backwards with a monster wedgie. I think there's a reason they don't make slides like this anymore!
This monkey achieved what I couldn't on the playground: he climbed UP the slide all the way back out at the top. I always tried climbing up the slide the "wrong" way when I was a kid...it was the thing to do, a show of superiority at the playground I guess...
I got to spend a couple days with my best friend from grade school on this trip. Aren't her kids gorgeous?! I asked them to make a silly face and Taj didn't know what to think of that:)
This guy lives for the park, so we hit it even when we're out of town.
Last weekend we hit the road again and drove until the black top ended. There is something about a small town that is soothing and healing to some, obscure to others. For us though, going back home to our small towns is like coming home to ourselves again. I guess there's just a part of us that comes alive when we see the city in our rearview mirror. On this trip I decided to take pictures of the old buildings we saw along the way. Really, small towns hold a lot more history than the city sometimes because some things just stay the way they were 50 years ago. I've decided that since we travel so much, that I'm going to do a little photo album dedicated to small towns. I've always loved old buildings and history, so I'm putting my camera to good use. I don't know that Brannon is thrilled to take the scenic route on our trips, but he's a good sport. We always stop and have fun along the way though:)
Taj and I made the rounds this weekend solo. Brannon has been out of town, again, so Taj and I flew the coop to spend time with my parents in Provo at the BYU state track meet. My little sister Macee took state in the 1A division 2 mile race, so we're super proud of her:) She needed to end the season off good. Anywhere I take Taj though, there is no time for just sitting, so I followed him around with my camera to make all that running around a tad bit productive. Hope you all were able to get out and enjoy the good weather! Sunday Brannon was home so we took a drive up Farmington canyon since the weather was so beautiful. This boy loves water and throwing rocks!
He is laughing right here because I skidded down a dirt and gravel hill in my tennis shoes and almost turfed it on my camera. Hilarious...but I don't get that many shots of him actually looking at the camera, so I slid down the hill a couple more times for his entertainment, but what mom wouldn't? My little pirahna boy.
I'm too sexy for my shirt.
When my mom saw this car, she was like "Wow, that's a classic!" I was like "Are you serious? No it's not, maybe in Burt Reynolds' day, but now? No." The front license plate said "Pride Certified"...lol...I would't have been shock to have seen Uncle Rico step out of this rig:)
Taj, thoroughly enjoying the leash...not.
The said leash from the back, kinda cute huh?
The face of a champion.
My future track star already conquering the hurdles.
So today I filled up two garbage bags full of clothes and shoes from my closet and dresser. I sent those babies packin to the DI. Brannon always thinks I do this just so I can say "I don't have anything to wear" so that I can go shopping...I'm not confirming or denying that, but any woman could use a good excuse to shop right?
lol...honestly people, that is why you see a man holding this shopping bag....
This is the church where my grandma and grandpa got married. It's like the cute little white church I imagine couples getting married in in all those love stories. This is in Nucla, CO. My mom is from this small backwoods town in Colorado. It's almost like going back in time when we go to visit family that still lives here.
This is what I call a redneck treehouse. My mom said that the slide is from the swimming pool she used to swim at when she was a little girl. This is actually in Naturita, CO, just five minutes south of Nucla. Both towns are pretty poverty stricken and in disrepair. It's literally unlike anything I've seen before. You would be amazed at what people live in. There are only a handful of actual "houses" in Naturita and the rest of the town is like a giant trailor park, but most people are happy here living the simple life. Just goes to show that it doesn't take much to be happy. I just had to get a picture of this treehouse though. It kinda reminds me of the Grinch's lair on "How the Grinch stole Christmas." We still like to tease my mom about her "redneck" roots in Colorado.
I thought I'd better do a post about Taj. He is growing up so quick and I don't want to forget the little things I love about him right now! I just took him to his 18 month well-check yesterday. He's officially done with immunizations until he's in kindergarten! He had his last two yesterday, but he also had to get poked three times in the arm so they could draw blood to test him for allergies to food. After three pokes, they still couldn't get enough blood because Taj was so upset that the blood wouldn't flow. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we don't have to do it again, talk about traumatizing!
Anyway, he weighs only 22 lbs. and has since he turned one. He is the WORST eater I have ever known and just when I thought I was done with formula, I have to start buying it again because he won't eat! I'm going to get this kid eating if it kills me! He is in the 75th percentile for the size of his head and in the 85th percentile for his height. So at least he is still growing:)
As far as personality goes, he has a lot of it. He is very stubborn and strong-willed. He likes to do things his way and when he wants. He tells us "No!" a lot, which is okay with me because at least I know what he doesn't want. He still puts on a pretty good fit about once or twice a day and is starting to get possessive of his toys. He babbles constantly and manages to say a few coherent words like: blankie, 1,2,3, doggie, mommy, daddy, thank you, what's that, binkie, hi, and he can bark like a dog and whinny like a horse. He understands commands like: go get your blankie or let's go upstairs or outside. So while he still doesn't make a lot of sense, it's encouraging to know that he is understanding and comprehending our language.
Taj loves to be outside more than anything even if it is thirty below or hurricane weather. He loves dogs and loves going to the park. He likes to push his cars around on the floor and right now he's in to buckling things and putting lids on containers. He also likes to watch a good movie every once in awhile too. He loves reading books and I am more than happy to oblige. His favorites are Goodnight Moon and Millie Moo.
Mercifully, he is still taking about a three hour afternoon nap, which gives me a well-needed break to get things done. He loves to give slobbery kisses and sometimes will even pucker up for a kiss. Snuggling time is very rare and cherished. We feel so blessed to have his spunky little soul in our family. We love you Taj!
I know these pics are super out of order, but I'm giving myself a gold star just for posting tonight. Brannon got me a new camera for mother's day, so I played around with it a bit at the reception.
"Hey everyone, where did our grandmas go?" "Oh wait, there they are!" I just happened to look up when I was outside to see that my grandmas had decided to take a tour of the old hotel, so funny!
This kid was just begging to get outside and tear the place up.
He graciously allowed me one shot looking into the camera and even managed a half smile...
This was my sister's wedding cake: 400 cupcakes. Brannon had to pick them up in Provo on his way down and drive for five hours with the AC going full blast so they didn't melt, what a trooper!
This is the Hyland Hotel in Monticello where my sister had her reception. It's actually a historic site now, but they rent it out for such occasions. It's a super cool venue if you're going for vintage/antique themes.
All I wanted is a picture, is that so much to ask? A demon took over my child on my sister's wedding day. That's what happens when he won't go to sleep until 1:00 a.m. We fought him all day long, which made for two tired, cranky parents at the end of the day. That's parenthood though right?
Taj is such a ladies' man! Look at him strut past my sister's roommates. I can already tell he is just like his dad:)
My lil' sis Marci married her sweetheart on May 7th in the Monticello, UT temple. They are seriously the kind of couple that have always been meant for each other. They are the fairytale couple!
Mr. & Mrs. Brian Bothwell (sparklers are an awesome idea for a sendoff!)