Saturday, August 29, 2009

JOY



















Here's to being this happy and care free! I hope to achieve it at some point in my life . . . hopefully soon!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

My Husband and His Aunt are the BEST!

It all started with this email from my husband to his Aunt Staci

Hey Auntie
How's it going, I saw the pics of the house for Tom's birthday and it looked amazing! I can't wait to see it in person. So I'm not sure if you think you can help me with this, but I thought I'd check. I'm trying to suprise Julie, she's been saying she doesn't feel pretty or stylish, and I've been trying to think of a way I can reward her for getting a new job. So I thought I'd ask you if you had any clothes you were on the verge of recycling, that I could suprise Julie with, please nothing new, but maybe anything you won't wear anymore that she could wear in the fall/winter. So if you can't think of anything that's totally cool and I'm sure I can think of something else, but let me know. 
Thanks, Love you
James 


And her reply

Too cute. Yes I am sure I have stuff. She is just smaller (much) than me-but I will rummage through and pull stuff together for her. Also-I have a ton of Amex points that I can exchange for gift cards at a few stores banana republic and I think J Crew, that you can give her to go shopping. It takes awhile to process-but I will start it and get you a good amonut that you can send her on a shopping spree. I will keep you posted on my stuff and gc's. 

I know the feeling of needed a pick-me up! Nice of you to think of something so sincere. I will be happy to help. 

Peace,
Staci 


I cannot believe my husband did this for me, and I cannot BELIEVE how generous Staci is. I love you both! 

The gift cards arrived in the mail a couple days ago, so James is taking Ben and I up to beautiful Park City to the Banana Republic Factory Store and the Gap Outlet, so I can stretch my gift card money. I also signed up for both of their newsletters, so received two, 20% a single item coupons, and two, 15% off my entire purchase coupons. I'm going to make every dollar count Staci. I'm looking for good basic pieces and fun pieces that I can layer with. 

I'll post my wonderful findings later. See yah . . . I'm going SHOPPING! 

gap.com       and 

here I come!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A Day At The Park

Yesterday I took Ben and Eva to beautiful Sugar House park. It's a large park with running and biking trails, large BBQ areas, a huge central pond with lots of pretty ducks, and a playground of course. It's about a 20 minute walk from the Sickler's house (my employers). 

Their chariot!













There was only one baby swing so they had to take turns . . .













that turned out okay. 













Eva's turn now!






















































The park was a little damp after the morning rain and of course these two found all of the worse areas, therefore a bath was in order.  They were so cute in there!




























What a lovely day!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Movie Monday!

I missed last week so I have a few videos for you this week. 

One day Bentley just started nodding his head. What's funny about it is he actually does it when you are asking him questions. He rarely shakes his head no, hopefully that's a good sign about the future, maybe he wont tell me "no" often. Wishful thinking right!

video

We went bowling on Friday night (see post below), and Ben woke up after sleeping through most of it, a little dazed and confused to say the least. James R. and Marianne tried to "shake" him out of it. 
video

Lastly a little taste of the fun time we had at Raging Waters (see post below) on Saturday night. Fun weekend I know! And yes those crazy tan line were from the basketball tournament earlier that day (see post below). James also has a permanent tank top. I tried as best as I could to airbrush them in the photo. We looked pretty ridiculous!


video

Fun Family Weekend

We had a fun filled weekend because for James it was the last weekend of summer. He starts school TOMORROW. We decided to pack it all in. 

Before I get to all the conventional fun, I have to share with you all probably the most exciting thing we did this weekend. We saved about $500-600!!! James' books this semester are CRAZY expensive, and there was just NO way that we could afford them. So first I checked out half.com, and located everything for about $300, then I checked out chegg.com (an online site that allows you to rent books and provides you with a box and free label to ship it back after a designated amount of time), and found everything for $200. We still thought that we could do better. So we checked out The U's library catalogue and found three of his most expensive books, and they totaled a cost of $0 and .0!!!! We are going to wait and see how necessary the other two books are before we rent them from chegg, but they're the cheapest anyway!

Hooray for saving money!!!!!


Now for the weekend events . . . 



On Friday our childhood best friend, James Tarbat arrived in Utah after driving all night long. After giving him some time to rest we went over to his new place and got in some good face time. The boys played some basketball at the apartment's indoor court, and then we decided to go bowling. We called up James R. and Marianne to meet us (so MANY James). 












Ben fell asleep on the way, so we wrapped this blanket around his stroller and he slept until the last fifteen minutes our so, despite the extremely LOUD music. It was funny when he woke up and was in a complete daze wondering where in the heck he was.  














Everyone had a great first game, and that bottom score . . . yah that's MINE. Can you believe it 180. I almost closed out (got a strike or spare) every frame, until I blew it in the 9th. Truly a one time thing I'm sure. The next game I bowled a 100, still good though. 







































James, our great friend James Tarbat (who just moved to Utah this weekend to go to school), and his friend and roommate, Jake entered a 3 on 3 basketball tournament this Saturday. It was outside and very, very hot, but the boys had a good time and it offered them some good practice before their league starts in a couple weeks. 





































































James also entered into the dunk contest and got 2nd place, and James and James T. entered the three point contest, and James T. won 2nd!



























The 3 on 3 tourney. First they played three games, and won one of them. Then there was a single elimination tournament, which they lost, so it was time to go home. I think everyone was relieved, it was really hot. Bentley was done! 





















































Remember how I said that our apartment complex was offering discount Raging Waters tickets? Well, I thought that I could buy the tickets the day of (the lady told me they weren't at risk of selling out), and guess what . . . they were sold OUT! Don't ask me why but I was so upset that I actually began to cry when I got home and told James that I missed the tickets.

So  obviously for some reason it was important to me. The next day we went anyway. Luckily they had night time tickets that were half the normal price. It was so fun, we rarely do anything really big (not that the water park is some huge grand vacation), but it just makes me feel more like a family when we do stuff like this. 

Bentley really enjoyed it which made me so happy. Not that I want my baby to grow up too quickly, but I've just always looked forward to doing stuff with him and him actually being somewhat aware of DOING it! I loved it too. Water parks remind me of my childhood. James watched Ben as I went down two water slides. There was something so freeing about it and exhilarating (it's weird the things that give you a sense of freedom when you're a mom).  

































































We left the camera in the car because we didn't want to leave it in our bag as we walked around the park. But I decided to go get it because I had to capture Bentley playing in one of the kid areas. It was this splash park that had all kinds of different spraying apparatuses. At first he was a little weary, but then he got so into it. Eventually he even walked right under a waterfall (he was lucky it didn't knock him down). 

BUT, the park was closing in about thirty minutes, and they turned off all of the sprays, and closed the lazy river (our two favorite places). So we headed quickly over to the other kid area to get some pictures and take some video of Ben's first water park adventure.  







































Bentley (and James and I--we went to bed at about 10:30--early for us) exhausted from the long fun weekend!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

We Love Where We Live

So I've mentioned it before, we live in a really small one bedroom apartment w/o AC, a dishwasher, or carpet. BUT . . . (1) we have an amazing outdoor living space, with a large grass area, a playground, swing set, sand box, picnic tables, and a BBQ. And that's just our court. (2) our laundry room is just next door, and we only share it with 11 other residents. (3) our apt. office building is very close, and it has it's own ATM and Red Box machine, which we frequent (too bad we've seen everything good in it right now). (4) convenient location near the campus, and in a great part of town (we feel safe here). (5) all our neighbors are starving students too, so there's no keeping up with the Jones' issue here. (6) there are lots of fun activities here for residents, for FREE 99!

Fun things thus far this summer:

1st- Outdoor Movie on the Lawn. Two weeks ago the apartments hosted Monsters vs. Aliens on the lawn. They provided us with popcorn, sodas (not generic), snow cones, and cotton candy. It was so much fun bringing a blanket out and cuddling up to my two boys. I really liked the movie too. I can't wait till Ben is actually interested so him and I can go see all of the latest kids movies together. 




















































2nd- Star Gazing & Smores Party- Last Thursday there was a meteor shower, so the apartments threw this fun event. Ben and I couldn't stay for the shower (it occurred after midnight), but we did go to make two yummy smores. I'm obsessed with this tasty treat, and Ben is a converted fan. He couldn't have marshmallow (choking hazard), but enjoyed some grahams and chocolate.  







































We also get lots of discount tickets to places like Lagoon (theme park), and Raging Waters (water park), which we are going to on Friday!!!

Yah for living at University Village (The University of Utah's family housing)!

County Fair

We went to the Salt Lake County Fair last week. It was a little bit smaller than I had imagined it would be, but there were a LOT of animals. Most surprising, was the large collection of Australian animals, who ever heard of kangaroos at a fair? 

First we walked around and looked at all of the caged 4-H animals. Ben wasn't too interested, but who is interested in huge pigs with flies swarming them, and gigantic cows that are soon to be sold off to the highest bidder, slaughtered, and stored in a garage freezer for the next year. Gross! 


























He warmed up to the animals by the time we got to the petting zoo. The goats were really friendly and came right up in Ben's face, which scared him a little. Please ignore the fact that my child has no shoes on and is standing in a pen full of animals and their "droppings." We forgot shoes, and we washed his feet off immediately, okay!

































































Love the pink tractor. 
 

























It was a great day on the farm!