Monday, August 26, 2013

Last Bite of Summer!

We have had a summer full of swimming, playing with cousins, soccer, summer corn on the cob, reuniting with friends and family, hiking, Bear Lake raspberries, boating, and riding their scooters in Utah, Idaho, Wyoming and Montana.  We have tried to take in every favorite restaurant, outdoor summer concert, lunch dates with friends and weekend trips to see family.  And we have loved every minute of it!  However, I think the boys are ready to go back to school and get back into our routine again.  I know I am!  :)

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Play Date with Blake's Birth Siblings.

This picture is telling of our day with the Larson Family.  Louie and Blake were having so much fun with Blake's birth siblings that we could hardly assemble them for a picture! Lots of tickling, giggling and camera's pointed in their direction.  In this photo are the four birth siblings older than Blake.  Too bad you can't see it in this photo, but Blake looks just like Olivia (is sitting next to him on the stairs) who then in turn looks just like Ryan (Olivia's adoptive father--who is a brother to the birth mom of this crew!).  The only missing birth sibling is Chase who had already started school in Arizona.
It was a small Larson reunion (Blake's birth siblings and their Larson cousins).  We congregated at Paige's house which in essence is a rural Disneyland.  The kids loved feeding and petting the chickens, playing in the "sishy pond" (Koi fish pond) tether ball and badminton.  All the kids have grown up so much since our visit last summer.  Blake gravitated to the older Larson teenage cousins.  They would indulge him with any request.  Hence the picture below.  Blake is strumming a really nice guitar!
I love that we have started this tradition of play dates with birth siblings while the boys are young. They easily play with both sets of birth siblings, aunts, uncles and cousins.  They are blessed to grow up with an "extended" extended family. 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

RV Trip with Dad

Cody has always had this dream of taking his family on a road trip in an RV.  This could stem from his history of watching too many Chevy Chase vacation movies!  Who can say? 
Anyway, this year he decided to take the boys on an RV trip while I spent my annual week at the beach with my girlfriends.  I like to refer to this week as "Juju Appreciation Week."  I think the RV trip this year might have amplified the appreciation part.  :)
I helped Cody pack the RV with everything he could possibly need for two boys in the wild, lovingly kissed and hugged all my boys good bye and waited for the first report that night.  After three hours, I get a phone call from Cody explaining to me how he has had to stop the RV three times so that Louie could go to the bathroom.  Louie was so excited there was a "kitchen with juice" and a potty in the car. Cody would drive as far as he could while they were sleeping and then camp for the night at an RV park.  The days were filled with
exploring the terrain of Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.  At one point I got a call from Cody saying he wanted to buy property in Montana due to the gorgeous rivers and mountains.  After five days, they were suppose to end their trip in Bear Lake for a few days.  Knowing they were close to home, Cody pressed on to make it to their own beds and skipped Bear Lake.  If you know Cody, this is highly unusual.  He LOVES Bear Lake.  However, I think "Juju Appreciation Week" may have only needed 5 days this year rather than seven!  Here are a few highlights from their trip...
Cody really wanted to stop and visit with the locals and try out the specialties at the drive-ins and diners.  Here they are indulging in shakes at a local diner in Wyoming.
The Infamous RV.  Cody slept on a queen size bed in the back.  Louie slept on a top bunk above the drivers seat.  And Blake slept where the kitchen table converted to a bed.  There was a shower in the size of an airplane bathroom and a small kitchenette with a microwave.  Let's be honest... all you really need is a microwave and some hot dogs.

Super happy to be out of the RV and exploring the river.  Water is usually a guarantee of a good time.
Coming to the end of a fantastic boys road trip in an RV. 

Monday, August 12, 2013


This was our first time at a themed park with the kids.  It's kind of our test run before attempting Disneyland in the next year.  We only went for an extended afternoon... but the boys did GREAT!  Here are a few of our highlights...
This is my favorite photo of the day.  Pure happiness.

Louie and Blake did really well today!  The loved all the rides.  When the lines were a little long, there were other things to hold their attention.  We had snacks to keep them going and this huge foot long corn dog.  Who knew they came that long.  At the end of the day, we topped it off with an ice cream before heading home.