Saturday, July 24, 2010


I love my sisters.  Sure, we still disagree on things from time to time, but I know they will always be there when I need them.  I've been lucky enough to have 2 of my sisters (Jamie & Heidi) move to Phoenix in the last year (along with my parents!).  It's been nice, after 16 years of not living by my family, to be so much closer to them.  My kids have been over the moon having grandparents and aunts doting on them.  They've really missed out on that up until now because we've lived so far away for so long.  There is still a big chunk of family we don't live near, and we miss them and hope to see them more now that Mark's training is over.  We love you guys...whether you are in Arizona, California, Washington, Idaho, Utah, or Kentucky!!
 My sisters and me (Kacie & Heidi to the left, Jamie to the right).

This picture is missing two important brother, Matt & my sister, Brittany.

Friday, July 9, 2010

ward campout 2010...Arizona is NOT all desert

When I first moved to Arizona I had no idea they had mountains rivaling the beauty of my beloved Sierra Nevada Mountains in California.  I have been informed that half of the state consists of these beautiful, pine-covered mountain ranges with beautiful lakes and streams, meadows, valleys, and cliffs.  There are also beautiful desert rock formations.  I have really fallen in love with Arizona.  I still am not fond of desert landscaping, and chose not to have any at my house, but I have also grown to appreciate the beauty of the desert (as long as I get to keep my lush, green landscape surrounding my actual house).

Our ward puts together a really fun family campout every summer.  So far, for the 3 summers we have been here, it has been 2 1/2 hours away at a place called Clint's Well.  It is beautiful there. 

And not hot.

Let me repeat.  It's not hot.

That is one of the best parts...getting out of the July heat of Phoenix and escaping to the beautiful mountains where the temperature is at least 30 degrees cooler.  Ward members bring tents, campers, quads, dirt bikes, jeeps, and everyone explores the beautiful Arizona mountains.  We enjoyed lots of good food and great conversation with friends.  

This year the only thing missing was my dear husband.  He had to work, so I went just me and my kids.  Bryan (my amazing Scout) and I set up an awesome camp with two tents and even a solar shower (I can't go without rinsing off every day - even though everyone laughs at me)!  I can't wait to go back next summer!

 Cutie-pie Kyle!

 My friend, Carrie & Morgan's friend, Macey.  We drove 5 minutes from the campsite to a great reservoir so the kids could fish.

 Colton (my very capable cub scout) & Kyle having so much fun fishing together!

 Me and my two youngest boys.

 Colton hanging out with his partner in crime...Ty.

 Kyle, doing anything but relaxing, on the hammock (check out the kids face behind him...yah, dirt - that's what camping's all about!).

 Morgan and her friends.

Bryan and his buddies.

Monday, July 5, 2010

independence day FAMILY BBQ SWIM PARTY

July 4th fell on a Sunday this year.  We went and watched the local fireworks show Sunday night, but didn't feel good about doing our BBQ/Swim Party on a Sunday, so we elected for a July 5th celebration.  We invited family and cousins living in the area.  Everyone had so much fun!  We had loads of yummy food thanks to the many Food Network loving family members I haveWe swam and played and talked the night away.  I can't wait to do it again next year!

 Colton going after the ball!

 Morgan with her cousin, Rachel.

 My mom, me, and my sister Heidi.

 Bryan getting ready for a canon ball!

 Kyle all geared up to make a splash!

   Colton diving off the waterfall - good dive Col-dog!

Thursday, July 1, 2010


Playing tennis in the summer is something you have to get up early here to do.  Colton wanted to sign up for tennis classes this summer.  They wanted us at the court by 7am.  This is so you don't roast in the 100+ degree afternoon once the sun comes up.

Colton absolutely loved playing - all my kids do (Bryan and Morgan didn't want to get up early on their precious summer days off school, & Kyle wasn't old enough for the class).  Colton loved every morning that he got to go to tennis.  He never complained once.  Here are some shots I got of him during his classes...