Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Week of Celebration

This is what I saw tonight when I looked out my kitchen window. Taj is going through another phase where he loves to help with everything, like mowing the lawn and doing the laundry. Like today he followed me into the laundry room and opened the dryer and then he wanted me to hand him the clothes from the washer, which he then put in the dryer. You know he's watched me do it a hundred times, but I never thought he would get the concept yet. I guess it just goes to show they know a lot more than we think they do:)
Brannon's alway telling me how he burns once and then gets tan, but here's proof that he's a lightweight in the sun. He burns every, single time if he doesn't have sunscreen...Sorry love, better keep some Aloe handy!

Taj caught on really quick this year to picking up candy off the ground at the parade...the only part he didn't get was that you have to take the wrapper off first. He would just shove it in his mouth and upon tasting the wrapper would deem it unworthy and he spit it out and throw it:)

What would summer be without an inflatable kiddie pool? We've spent the last two days in the yard in the kiddie pool. Notice there are no toys in the pool. I tried, but this kid likes his pool clean. He told me "No, No, No" every time I tried to give him something to play with. I guess all he needs is a little water to have some fun:)

Seen here is Brannon demonstrating how they used poles for the ski lift and not chairs. I don't think he has any idea I took this picture...haha, he's totally a kid at heart!

Taj at the old ski lift in Monticello telling us his take on the place in Swaheeli, which I am now starting to understand....is that a bad sign?

How cute is this car?! It's like the movie Cars come to life!

There is so much construction in Utah that it has now become a part of our daily lives....we even put it in our parades.

This boy and this dog were inseparable. Taj loved wrapping his little arms around her neck and giving her kisses. He nearly fell asleep on her. Usually he rubs his blankie, but this night he rubbed her soft, fur coat. He even crawled under the bed the hangout with her and got stuck. I pulled him out to find dog hair matted to his lips and face, oh I love animal hair, especially when it gets in your mouth...

By a raise of hands, who has a grandma that can play the accordian? Am I the only one with my hand raised? She got that thing when she was like 12 years old and it still works! It only weighs like 50 lbs., but she still knows how to work some magic on that thing. She had us all slappin our legs in beat (but not too loudly, otherwise it got her off rythym:))

This is my sister's Marci's birthday cake. She thought 19 was "gross" and couldn't fathom the thought of 20, thus we have all been asked to refer to her age as 19+1.

This boy was born to ride. We even found a spider web infested helmet for him to wear. I wasn't brave enough to clean it out, so Brannon did. I just want my baby safe!

Taj getting a lesson from grandma on the art of dunking an Oreo, which he mastered in about two seconds.

This picture is so flattering that I just had to put it on the blog for everyone to see. We got rained on so hard the night we camped. It was just me, Taj, my mom, and my sister Marci. In that one night we managed to: turn the umberella inside out in the storm, drive off in the night to the bathroom with the water cooler (our only source of water) on the tail gate and come back to find it lying in the middle of the road empty, enjoy half-cooked hobo dinners garnished with ashes and dirt, and to be stinked out of the trailer because someone left something putrid in the trash can the last time they camped in there. It sounds like I'm complaining, but I'm not. I haven't laughed that hard in ages. Women campers rock!
Taj had a great time camping. He loved the flashlight (obviously) and the picnic table, which we ended up sleeping on...best night of sleep he ever had, worst night I've had in a long time, but it was worth it:)
This kid is one hard core big-wheel rider, even if he can't reach the pedals yet.

For the sake of not boring people to tears, I'm just going to put this week's post in pictures since we've done so much in the last week. You know, it's like one of those posts where you want it for journaling purposes, but you don't want to have to write a novel to accompany the pictures. I'm taking the easy way out this time...sometimes pictures say so much more anyway!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Photo Shoot

Since Brannon gave me a shiny new camera for Mother's Day, I figured that I would try it out on a real-life model, my sister:) She's usually behind the camera as well, but I begged her to let me practice on her and honestly, she can make a bad picture look good.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

This kid's going to give me a heart attack!

No matter how careful and watchful I am, he still manages to get hurt. This is the part about parenthood that I dread and I fear that this is not the end of cracked open heads, bumps, and bruises, and hopefully I will never have to deal with broken bones. He got this doozy just running across the pavement like he always does. This time he tripped and didn't get his arms out in time to catch himself, thus, the cracked open head and goose egg. Thank goodness it wasn't as bad as I initially thought when blood was gushing down his face (head wounds bleed like the dickens!) We put lots of pressure on that baby and it quit bleeding pretty quickly and revealed the cut was too small to require stitches, which I am grateful for. I didn't want him to go through any more trauma than he had to, or I had to:) I guess this is all part of raising a rambunctious and daring little boy!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Snips, Snails, and Puppy Dog Tails

Taj didn't know what to do with this baby when it started to cry, so he just threw it on the ground, but in the next pic, you can see he felt bad about it:)

This was the first time Taj has seen a doll and for the record, it's the neighbor girl's, but come on ladies, who doesn't love a guy that can be sensitive once in a while?
He took that baby for the ride of its life...only a boy!
What more magical time of the year for kids than summer? It was my favorite time of the year when I was a kid. It meant popcicles, swimming, forts, lemonade, sleeping outside, circus sundaes, long bike rides, etc. Now all I can think about is where's the shade, this heat's killing me, and I'm sweating in places I shouldn't be sweating, but I do love to watch Taj play outside though. It reminds me of how sacred childhood is. It's a time to be happy, to be free, to be imaginative, and to thoroughly enjoy the simple things in life. More times than not, I wish I could be that way again. Why does reality have to hit when you grow up? Kids have all the fun! I had a great childhood and I hope to be able to bring the same magic to my kids' lives. This evening we did what we always do: play outside in the sprinkler water and play with the neighbor kids, followed by a good, long walk cause that's what summer's all about.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

What a weekend!

I admit, I did let out a swearword on this one. This is the portable DVD player I froze my keister off waiting in line for at Target on Black Friday last year. How did it get this way? Skunks, I blame them. Let me explain. On our way up to watch fireworks at Ruby's Inn we came upon a giant black and white mass in the rode. We couldn't tell what it was and we were all like, "Oh! Whatever it is, it's not dead yet!" As we got closer, we realized it was a flippin herd of skunks, like at least ten of them all eating something dead in the road. It was the weirdest thing I've ever seen. We dodged every last one of them and made it to fireworks safely. Well, on the way back we were coming back into town right about where we saw the skunks the first time. Brannon came up on some cars and decided to pass them. At this point, let it be known that I said, "I wouldn't do that. You're going to hit whatever's dead in the road that the skunks were eating." His response: floor it anyway. Also note that we are in Black Magic, aka, the black corolla. Just as we are about to pass the car, there it is, a big, fat, dead skunk in the road and the next thing I heard was, thump thump. I was like, "See, I TOLD you we'd hit whatever was dead in the road and it was a flippin skunk!" Bran was like, "No it was a coyote or something." Me: "No, I'm sure it was a skunk." As we're driving up the road, the most potent and eye-burning smell wafted through the vents and filled the car, skunk, dead skunk! Bran was like, "I smell skunk." No kidding! We just ran over one! At this point, he admitted that yes we did run over a dead skunk. We pulled into the garage at his dad's house and when we opened our car doors it was even worse. It literally smelled as if we had all been sprayed. When we walked in the house his dad was like, "What in the hell is that smell?! Did somebody get sprayed by a skunk?" At this point, I made Brannon back the car out of the garage so it didn't stink up the whole house. How does this tie in with the fried DVD player? Well, because we backed the car out to sit in the hot sun the next day (with the DVD player in the back window) the sun melted it. I almost cried when I saw it, but miraculously, the screen still works and the sound does too, although it sounds more like a loud staticky radio. Moral of this story: Men, listen to your wife because sometimes she's actually right! As for the skunk smell, even two days later on our way back home, we got an occasional whif of skunk nastiness.
Taj got to do everything a little boy loves to do on the farm, including driving this tractor around with his daddy. Brannon tried to get him off, but couldn't pry Taj's fingers from the steering wheel. He is exactly like his dad in sooo many ways.

This is the face of a champion. We are proud to announce that our son won the one-year-old boys race at the festivities in Tropic. He beat out three other little boys. It was a real nail-biter;) Basically, I stood at the starting line and Brannon stood at the finish line, so all he had to do was run to daddy. These races are a tradition every 4th of July in Tropic and Brannon ran in them when he was a little boy, so it was fun to have Taj run in them as well and actually win:)

A close-up of the medal since it hangs below Taj's belly button. It says, "Winner." That's right, our son is a winner! j/k We are going to keep it just in case he never wins anything else in his life:)
This is called Georgetown. It's an old, old cemetary just south of Tropic. Yes we are in our Sunday clothes...we skipped out of Sunday school to walk through a "haunted" cemetary. We're all about wholesome family activities. Really though, this place has spawned a variety of ghost stories from the locals, which makes it even cooler!

Taj is already riding bareback, that kid will tackle anything!

I think Brannon enjoyed the jumbo blow-up slide as much as Taj did. Brannon was the one who was like, "How many more tickets do we have? I think we should go again!" I was all for it, as long as I didn't have to go down it and incur injuries such as raspberries and wedgies.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


I never imagined that I would be waiting in line with hundreds of giddy girls and grown women dying to see the latest installment of the Twilight series: Eclipse....on opening night...at one in the morning. I admit that when the books came out, I devoured them all within a few short weeks, but as time went on and after seeing the first movie of the series, I became disenchanted with it all and vowed to never spend another dime on a movie ticket to see anymore Twilight movies, that is until I got a phone call two nights ago from a girl in our ward asking me if I wanted to go to Eclipse. I was hesitant at first, but then she threw out that there were going to be 15 other ladies going and that we were hitting PF Chang's first. That pretty much sealed the deal, the good food part and good friends. PF Chang's was amazing! I've never eaten there before, but it is sooo worth it, especially if you and your friends pass your plates around so everyone can try everything.
Now the movie on the other hand was a different story. I was nearly plowed over by middle-aged women rushing into the movie theatre wearing t-shirts that said: "Team Edward." "Team Jacob." and my favorite, "Team whatever I can get." I couldn't believe the mass histeria over a movie, or should I say, over two fictional characters: Edward and Jacob. You should've heard the shrill screams of delight ripple through the theatre when Jacob took his shirt off in the movie. All I could think was "really, ladies, you will never be able to get your hands on those abs, so why get soooo excited?" As for the movie itself, I give it two stars at the very most. Everyone said it was better than New Moon, but the acting and special effects were still pretty shoddy. At times it was almost painful to watch. I still can't get over Robert Pattenson as Edward. All I could say about him was "Ew and gross" and there were countless women in the theatre who begged him not to take off his shirt, which mercifully, he didn't. Jacob definitely stole the show and many hearts that night. Does that make me Team Jacob? If you're a diehard Twilight fan, I'm sure you will love it, but if you are a good movie fan, I say skip it. The best part of the night was hanging out with a bunch of cool ladies until three in the morning. I would totally pay 15.00 again for a crappy movie, just to hang out with the girls.