Friday, April 27, 2012

A BIG Birthday

My 40th birthday was April 25th. It is now August and I am finally posting about it! It seems so long ago- I must be 43 by now.
The celebration was so awesome I couldn't wrap my head around how to do it justice in cyber space. So here is my attempt.

It can be difficult to figure out how to celebrate a big birthday you'd rather not even have. But I knew what I wanted to do! And I didn't really care if Ian was the only one I could get to go with me.

I wanted to go to Magic Mountain!! What better way to welcome in my forties than screaming my head off on gravity defying roller coasters?!?

But because I have the best hubby, he rallied some of my favorite people and we partied hard!!

A dinner at a delicious Mexican restaurant to start the weekend off. Followed by a party in the room complete with a hilarious, original serenade from my sisters.

Then we hit it hard in the morning. We waited almost 2 hours to get on our first roller coaster, X2. It was the most insane, intense ride any of us have ever been on. (Look at the picture of Marianne for proof.)

We waited in lots of long lines but kept ourselves laughing and entertained by taking pictures with famous people and taking turns making the best predator-prevention face we could make.

I thought we wouldn't spend the whole day at the park, instead opting for an early dinner and some hot tub time. But no- we shut that place down!! Ali and Linda even talked a security gaurd into letting them on crazy Tatsu one last time!!

It was a perfect weekend with people I love and I am forever grateful to them for making it happen!!

I guess 40 doesn't suck after all.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Find the Eggs!

Easter time calls for some hunting. This year our ward put on a morning hunt to help boost the candy supply of all the primary children. It was a lot of fun!

Taitum wanted to be the most popular girl there, so she brought our bunny on a leash. Cocoa Carrott almost got trampled but made it out alive!

Yep! Our girls dress the bunny up!

The next day we made a bunny cake for our Easter Dinner with a group of friends. The best part of this cake is way it requires us to use all the candy the Easter Bunny brought!

Another Tri

Ian just can't get enough! He did another sprint triathlon. This was the first of the season at Folsom Lake and the water was COLD. Like 48 degrees cold. But he survived the waters and racked up another finish (in his very popular Tri top! He loves all the comments!)

Spring Break

We got back from Hawaii just in time for the girls to go to one day of school and then start their Spring Break. (yep- teachers did not like this plan). I thought we would just hang out at home for the week and relax, but when someone invites you to do something fun it is hard to say no.

So we took off with two other families to spend a day at Stinson Beach north of San Francisco. Ian definitely couldn't add to the break he already took so he stayed home to work. Bummer.

We drove through clouds and rain but enjoyed blue skies and sun when we arrived at the beach. After all the sunning we wanted to partake of, it clouded over and started to sprinkle, so we packed up.

We stayed the night in Novato so we could hit Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in the morning. Great weather. Great rides. No lost kids! Good times.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

A Spring Wedding

The first of my parents 37 grand children got married April 20th in Salt Lake City. We couldn't miss this awesome occasion. Congrats Lindsay and Troy!

It is so fun to gather this huge family and reconnect! The cousins always have the best time!

Scottsdale Meet Up

So yeah- it has been a bit heavy in the time away from home department lately. It will calm down in May. But until then, let the craziness continue.

I met up with my best girls (minus Erin- bummer) for our 11th annual "Girls Trip". This time we decided to try out Scottsdale, Arizona for some good times. We could have fun anywhere!!

This was the appetizer at a restaurant called True Food. Healthiest app I've ever eaten!

Scottsdale has my kind of stores!

In an attempt to counter- balance all the junk we ate (cookies for breakfast), we got active too. We took a yoga class, went for a run, and hiked Camelback Mountain (not all on the same day).

After my girls left on Sunday I was able to hook up with some of my favorite friends from days of old (AKA college)! Soooo much fun!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Hawaii Part 7 - Dolphins!!!

I guess we saved the best for last. We were taking a gamble on this activity because there was no guarantee it would go according to advertised. But oh man - we won the lottery!!

Against all belief and odds, the 3 oldest girls and I woke up at 530 AM so we could drive down to the harbor in Kona to meet Captain Tino on his zodiac, the Liliko'i. We were setting out into the blue hawaiian waters in search of wild and free pods of spinner dolphins. But we were told seeing these dolphins is never guaranteed. Because the girls had done 2 months of chores at home in order to earn this activity, they were too hopeful not to go. (Daddy stayed home with Sutton because he is not a gambler. Mike and Chris didn't come because they we flying off to Oahu that morning.)

Within minutes of leaving the harbor we saw our first pod!!!

We watched, thrilled beyond belief, as the dolphins circled our small boat so close we could touch them. Our captain promised we would see more. And we did! Lots and lots!

Talk about doing something you've only dreamed about..... We eventually got out of the boat and snorkeled with the dolphins. All of us- with out any hesitation from the girls. It was incredible. I am still at a loss for descriptive words.

After swimming with our new friends to our hearts content, the captain steered the Liliko'i towards a reef where giant Manta Rays like to play cards. (not really, but what else do they do all day?) When Vito thought he saw a large black shadow moving through the water, he told us to jump in. I was the only taker. And that shadow turned out to be a 6 foot wide Manta Ray. I yelled for the girls to get in. Camden jumped in quickly, Quincee hung onto the boats ladder, and Taitum was too cold (or chicken) to get in. Too bad because this manta ray had friends and soon we were swimming with 4 ginormous rays.

On our return trip to the harbor we watched for whales, but didn't see any. We didn't really care. We did learn about the black jumping Hawaiian crab and how Capt Vito likes to scare unsuspecting passengers (um, me) with them. Hilarious ending to an unbelievable adventure!

This is when Ian gets extra props- when we got back to the house Ian had single handedly packed up all of our stuff and moved us out of the house. Our late check out plan didn't work becuse of a last minute rental and we had to be out. We spent our last afternoon on the beach, returned to the pool, ate ice cream directly from the containers, took showers, watched our last sunset on the beach, grabbed Subway for dinner on our way to the airport, got on the plane, and tried to get a some sleep on the red-eye back to reality.

Mahalo Hawaii for a trip we will never forget!