Saturday, August 29, 2009

Singing Group

I belong to a group that sings together every week. We sing in various wards and have a Christmas program that we perform. These are seriously the best ladies ever! He we are celebrating two birthdays and the announcement of a BABY!

Yard Work Can Kill...

While Oliver was mowing today he almost died of a heart attack when this little guy came slithering in front of the mower.

So we picked him up and moved him into the neighbors yard :)

Oliver was too freaked out to take a good picture but I have fond memories of these little guys from when we were little...and then right after that he got stung by a bee. Rough day!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Happy Birthday

My best friend and the love of my life is turning 28 today and here's a list of some of the things that make me love him more and more each day....

1. He always vacuum and mops the floors (I hate that part of cleaning).
2. He is patient.
3. He says his prayers.
4. He loves to cuddle.
5. He loves to take pictures.
6. He thinks I'm funny.
7. He provides for our family.
8. He does his calling and honors his priesthood.
9. He loves to travel.
10. He is a hard worker.
11. He does the last of the pick up - I can pick up until there are just a few things left and then he always puts the last few things away.
12. He loves my cooking.
13. He gets excited to see me at the end of the day, everyday.
14. He is loyal to his friends and family.
15. He puts others first.
16. He has high moral standards in what we watch and listen to.
17. He loves to try new things.
18. He tires to embrace my spontaneity.
19. He is fiscally minded.
20. He is honest.
21. He thinks I'm beautiful - even when I haven't showered in four days and we're camping.
22. He helps clean the house regularly.
23. He takes me to the temple often.
24. He listens to my rantings and ravings and opinions and long-winded ideas.
25. He goes along with things when I volunteer us to do things and help people.
26. He is a great decorator (I buy it he displays it).
27. He loves to do yard work.
28. He is committed to our relationship and making it work no matter what is happening.

I love you now, always, and forever - have a Happy 28th Birthday!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

First time to Yellowstone and first time to Montana

At the end of our annual Hansen family Teton trip this year, Oliver and I decided to spend an extra night in Yellowstone. I have never been to Yellowstone and Oliver only recalls driving to the park from the Tetons - straight to Old Faithful - and back to the Tetons. When we got to the entrance we asked about a camp spot and the attendant told us that the park had filled by 1 pm that day (it was 4:30 pm) and that we would have to go back to the Tetons or stay out in West Yellowstone.

I was really bummed, but we decided to go in and explore and see Old Faithful and then maybe just drive home through the night or stop in West Yellowstone and come back into the park in the morning.

We first stopped to look at Lewis Falls. It was really pretty in the late afternoon.

Then we made the decision to stop at every campground and see if we could find a spot. We stopped at Lewis Lake Campground and the sign said full. But after driving around - we found the very last spot for walk-ins only. It was technically a biker/back packer campsite, but a Yellowstone worker said that we could stay because it was so late in the day and probably wasn't going to be used. YEAH! So here is Oliver paying for our $12 miracle in a full park.

Next, we made dinner, set up camp and then decided to go and see Old Faithful so that we could go other places the next day and still make it home at a decent hour. This is Castle Geyser. I didn't realize that Old Faithful was surrounded by dozens of other geysers which were intermittently going off. It was an impressive sight.

Andy then, we were lucky enough to watch Old Faithful go off during sunset and it was spectacular. We enjoyed walking along the boardwalks during dusk and then sunset and then dark. We drove back to our campground in the pitch black, which was a little scary, and then slept great!

The next day, and some the night before on our way to Old Faithful, we saw all kinds of wildlife. It was a very successful wildlife scouting adventure.

A 5x5 elk...

A baby elk nursing...

A stag...

A buffalo sticking out its tongue...

A buffalo rolling in the dirt...

A weird looking black bird...

A nest of osprey (can't really tell but there are babies in there)...and all sorts of other animals.

We also stopped to walk around Dragon's Mouth Spring/Mud Volcano/Gizzly Fumapole and some other interesting bubbling features. Churning Caldron was so steamy that this is what it looked like to walk past it - and keep in mind - all that steam smells like rotten eggs. Which probably didn't smell a whole lot worse than me, seeing how I hadn't showered in 5 days!

From there, we went and hiked around Upper and Lower Falls which was spectacular.

And then, after driving through construction, we exited the park. I discovered that we were in Montana! Having never been to Montana I was ecstatic! I admit that we didn't see or do anything in Montana - but now I have been.

On the way home, we stopped in Rexburg to have our lunch on the temple grounds. Neither of us had seen the new temple before, but it was peaceful and pretty. A bonus, it was closed for cleaning so there was no one around to mind our stench...

What a great and unexpected trip to Yellowstone - we will surely be returning!

Maggie for 4 nights and 4 days...

Over the Fourth of July we were the proud stand-in parents of a two-year old. While mom and dad were having this adorable little guy...

We were watching this happy girl...Because of some complications during birth and some problems with Grandma's health - Oliver and I got to watch her for the entire holiday weekend. The truth is she really is as happy as the picture makes her look. She was fun and happy and we loved watching her.

We went up the canyon and had a picnic lunch and the next day we went hiking around Silver Lake.

She and Oliver had to keep looking at the fishes - but she kept telling us "shhhh" because they were all sleeping (and we didn't have the heart to correct that!).

We saw several "chip-monkies" and she loved chasing them around the boardwalk and through the trails.

She played on the teeter-totter.

We enjoyed cake to celebrate her 2-year old birthday (just a day after little brother).

And we sat on the curb and watched a fun firework display - she loved it!

All I can say is hopefully our kids turn out so well-behaved and happy.
It really was a joy!