Monday, October 31, 2011

Summer/Fall 2011

In a nutshell...

My mom and sister, Mindy, came and visited us. I showed them Van Meter Park where we went on a nice nature walk. All the boys had a blast finding all kinds of strange bugs, frogs, and birds. Poor Matthew and Zo accidently touched poison ivy along the way. Thankfully my wonderfully prepared sister had this magical mud stuff that helps take away the sting.

St. Louis Botanical Gardens with 2 of my sisters, Floris, Mindy, my mom, and all our kids.

We went to the pool a couple of times. I think Liam had the best time splashing with his blue ball.
Our neighbors invited us to the Demolition Derby. Zo LOVED it. He sat by the girls the whole time and intently watched the crazy loud cars all night. This is definitely the red neck event of the summer.

We made the insanely long drive to Utah at the end of the summer. The way there got pretty ugly around 9pm. Liam had been sick so we gave him some Benadryl. Turns out it has the opposite affect on him and so he was wired until about 11pm. There was a lot of screaming during that time. While we were there we visited my parent's house in Fairview. Zo had the time of his life. He fed the goats, picked apples, helped milk the goats, rode the 4-wheeler multiple times a day, watered the chickens, gathered the eggs, rode the horses, rode the plasma cars, and fell in love with his Grandpa.

I went on a beautiful horse ride with my dad up Fairview canyon. I must say it took awhile to get used to riding a horse again, and I was unexpectedly sore the next day. But it was so fun riding horses again!

We went to Tepanyaki Steak House with our friends from PA school, and sadly none of us remembered to take a picture. We had so much fun with them.

Sarah and Blake got married, and the ceremony was absoltely beautiful. It was great that we got to be with them on their special day.

I ran my first 5k while we were there, and just yesterday I ran my second. Times haven't been posted yet but I'm hoping I beat my previous time.

We also got together with the old house boys from BYU. We barbequed, played football, and got shakes at Artic Circle. Then we watched the game at my sister's house.

Liam turned 1 on Sept. 20th! We celebrated with cake and presents. He is such an easy going kid and follows Zo everywhere, even though Zo beats up on him a lot. He is always smiling and always on the go. He loves to play with Zo, especially in the rocks. He can say a few words like ma ma, da da, bye, and hi. I think he has also started saying, "What's this?" He loves to play the piano and had started to dance. He is a determined little guy and already will practice something until he masters it. He did that with walking and going down stairs. I love him so much!
I planned the Branch Halloween Party, and it went very well. We did a pot luck dinner, a gag raffle, fishing for prizes for the kids, a cake walk, and a trunk or treat. I made homemade root beer, caramel popcorn, and cupcakes that had little ghosts on the top made out of meringue. Zo was a cowboy and Liam was a Karate kid.

My neighbor brought me tons of tomatoes this summer so I canned like crazy. I canned 14 quarts of tomato soup, 4 quarts and 3 pints of salsa, 3 quarts and 5 pints of chili sauce, 2 quarts crushed tomatoes, 3 quarts and 2 pints of spaghetti sauce. Plus I made a big batch of fresh salsa. I learned that as the jalepenos sit in the salsa they get hotter. Brother Harris was sweating as he ate it at the pot luck. He said he would have kept eating but he ran out of napkins to wipe of the sweat. Lorenzo described it as so innocent looking, but it's defintely not baby food. (Our friend, Blanca, says that if food isn't hot it's like baby food.)

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