Friday, June 29, 2012


A couple weekends ago, I went up to Rexburg for a girls trip with Tanner's mom and sisters.  Why Rexburg, you ask?  Tanner's little sister Anne is a student up there and we thought it would be fun to go up and visit her, and it was!  Anne was in charge of creating a fun itinerary, and no offense to Rexburg, but she pretty much milked the place for all it was worth.  We had a great time for our 2 day, 1 night stay, and I'm pretty sure we did everything there is to do in the whole city.  Anne kept saying "Rexburg really isn't this fun, I promise."  
The fun included hiking the R mountain, which really, let's be honest, is a hill, but I loved it!  I haven't been hiking in faaaaar too long.  Really, I haven't been outside for an extended period of time in far too long, so this was really good for me.  Our group consisted of one 6ish months pregnant woman, a grandmother with bad feet, 2 mothers who gave birth less than 9 months ago, and one (hiking rookie) baby.  Oh and one fit, athletic, 19-year-old beauty (one of these things is not like the other).  The 95 year old couple we met in the parking lot at the bottom (who has probably done this every day for the past 50 years) took one look at us and told us the hike was really hard, but jokes on them--we did great.
Camryn is such a trooper.  I decided it was a great time to begin brainwashing her into loving the great outdoors.  You know, pointing out the sky, rocks, dirt, plants, and telling her how great and fun it all was.  Kind of like how I got her to love tummy time and the baby sling.  The entire way down the mountain, she was dead asleep over my arm.  Really cute if you ask me.  

Also, my aunt Kathleen lives in Rexburg and I got to visit!  I usually only see her family about twice a year, so I was so happy to see her!  She met Camryn for the first time and we just had a lovely time.  We went to an outdoor movie on BYU-I campus--Hitchcock's Rear Window.  It was way past Camryn's bedtime so we had to leave early but I definitely want to rent it and see the rest.  Too bad redbox has taken over and you can't just go rent regular movies anymore :( 

We also got pedicures (my 2nd one ever.  lovely), had an amazing lunch in the new Ricks gardens on BYU-I campus which are insanely beautiful (waterfalls, sculptures, these are legit gardens), and ate way too many peanut butter bars.  Oh and witnessed a car crash.  scary! Overall great weekend.  I wish our family vacations were in June instead of back to back in August, because I am dying for some good vacation time.  This one nighter was just a tease. 

Monday, June 25, 2012

Utah Arts Festival

I have a new dare for you:  I dare you to go somewhere that inspires you.

I dragged my husband and baby to the Utah Arts Festival on Friday and had a lovely time.  Tanner was amazing and spent most of the time in the shade making sure Camryn didn't overheat, which allowed me to walk around and feast on all of the beautiful and inspirational ART.  I can't tell you how much I love doing this.  And I also love that the artists are in their booth most of the time because it's so cool to meet them and ask questions about their work.  A lot of times they end up telling me something amazing that makes me love their work even more, or explaining their process to create it, which is always fascinating.  

These are a few of my favorites:

She told me that a lot of her work (like this first one) is inspired by and includes drawings from her 2 and 6 year old.  These "nice creatures" are so cool! She has two of them tattooed on her forearms. She says  "The big eyes and long legs represent, to me, a willingness to see the world in all its glory, and to move about in it fully." She also lets her children name the paintings (the ones that include their sketches)  which is how they end up with awesome titles like "a girl taking a walk with a nice creature who is a boy."  I also love her other titles, bright colors, abstract ideas, and overall amazing creativity.  I wish I was rich so that I could support her art and have it hanging all over my house.

"a girl taking a walk with a nice creature who is a boy"

 The big eyes and long legs represent, to me, a willingness to see the world in all its glory, and to move about in it fully

This is not Chaos

"All those things I feared would bruise him, he caught with grace and ease"

 A change in the weather II   

"Strong will, fast wheels"

This woman had her 6 month old baby on her hip, which added just one extra component to me being impressed.  I love collage.  

Liz Collins
This next picture unfortunately does not at all give credit to how cool this lady's work looks up close.  She does 2-D mixed media collage/painting using a lot of maps and cut up pieces of her own writing.  

One more.  I just like this guy.  That's all. 
Richard Curtner

I wish I had a better picture, but there was an infant play yard with this AWESOME toy hand made by some creative carpenter.  It was a big box painted funky with a bunch of fun knobs, door handles and hinges attached.   And a couple of huge tubes sticking out the top.  I thought it was so cool and kids were going crazy over it.   I thought it would be so fun to make one myself!

Sand sculpting

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

More of that little girl we love

Here's Camryn!  Yesterday was kind of an epiphany day for her as far as rolling over.  She's done it about twice in the last 2 weeks and then all of a sudden caught on yesterday and did it a million times.  Problem though:  she only knows how to roll from her back to her front, and just about the second she's on her tummy she bursts into tears.  That happened several times during the night and I'd find her facedown in her crib freaking out.  If any mothers have any advice on how to prevent this, it would be appreciated!

This is her "I can hear mom's voice behind me and I really really want to look at her" pose

This one cracks us up.  For a long time she was almost almost almost rolling over.  Just didn't  know what to do with that dang arm. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Growing Something

Here, I dared you to grow something.  And here, I'm doing it.  I think the rest of my 6-plex has probably started calling me the plant lady.

If you want to feel really good about yourself, plant green beans.  They grow really fast. 

Here is my geranium and 2 tomato plants.  I'm afraid I don't have enough sun for the tomatoes, but we'll see.

I've already got one!

Thank you, mother-in-law, for this beauty.

Vinny III

Next:  I dare you to do something that puts yourself out there. 

For me, this means I am going to enter the Utah Original Writing Competition.  Since not all of you (or any of you?) write, I'm not going to dare you specifically to enter, so interpret this dare as you will to your own circumstances.  Someone posted a link to this competition on Facebook and it's exactly what I needed right now.  I really want to do something with my writing, but right now, I'm just not exactly sure what.  I have a lot of ideas . . . but not a lot of work to show for it.  So, I want to start doing things that actually put my work out there.  The competition deadline for this year is June 29th, which isn't a whole lot of time, so I'm going to submit a children's book I have already written to the "Juvenile Book" category (which, coincidentally, is about a plant lady).  Next year, though,  I want to write a piece to submit to the Biography/Autobiography/History category (which I just realized is a bit ambitious, since there is a minimum length of 60,000 words requirement.  But still doable!) I have some ideas for pieces that would be perfect for this competition, and this might be just the push I need to really get serious about working on them. 
With that said, my childrens book isn't something I want to post here, but I do need some help and feedback on it, so if you are someone who would be willing to read it and want to, comment or send me a message and I'll send it to you.  But only if you promise to give me honest, thoughtful feedback on it!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Carpe the heck out of the Diem

Aside from being unbearably boring, graduations always inspire me a little bit.  To be ambitious, follow my dreams, think idealistically.  You know, go for things.  Something about all those young people in dorky hats with so much potential.  I saw this graduation speech somewhere online and wrote down a few gems from it.  A little food for thought, just in case you've lost that little idealistic sparkle in your eye (cheesiness intended): 

Do whatever you do for no other reason than because you love it and believe in its importance.  Don't bother with work you don't love. 

Read.  Read all the time.  Read as a matter of principle, as a matter of self respect.  Read as a nourishing staple of life.  

Carpe the heck out of the Diem.

Climb the mountain not to plant your flag, but to embrace the challenge, enjoy the air and behold the view.

Go to Paris to be in Paris.  Not to cross it off your list and congratulate yourself.  (I particularly like this thought.  How many things do we do just to say we did?  and have a picture of it up on the internet, cross it off our list, and feel cool that we are accomplished or well traveled?  I may be guilty of this at times.  Someone recently told me "it's important to enjoy the getting it done a little less, and the doing it a little bit more")

Get busy.  Have at it.  Don't wait for inspiration or passion to find you.  Get up.  Get out.  Explore.  Find it yourself.  Grab hold with both hands.  

On that note, my little baby sister graduated from high school last week!  This girl we all know and love:

Ya, she grew up a little bit.  These days, she looks more like this:

 Let's all take a moment to remember how dorky we looked in our graduation pictures and be jealous of how amazingly beautiful, photogenic, and fashionable this girl is.

Congratulations Maddy!  (sorry about the picture, I saw it on Facebook and couldn't help myself :))
Also, I'm trying to convince her that when she goes to college she should start going by her full name:  Madeleine.  Not that Maddy isn't great but isn't Madeleine just a beautiful name?  You should all encourage this.  

Monday, June 11, 2012


Tanner takes the MCAT on June 21st.  WE CAN'T WAIT.  He's been working really really hard, but we've been catching a little more of this lately. 


He's so burned out and just ready for this thing to be over.  He also hasn't had a break from taking classes since he got home from his mission in January of 2010.  Winter, spring, summer, fall semesters over and over, I have no idea how he does it.  During my college career I never took any spring/summer classes.  Couple that with the facts that I often took only 12 or 13 credits and explored about 10 different majors, it's a complete miracle (slash mystery) that I graduated in 4 years.  But even with that schedule I was always miserably fried by the end of April.  Something about the sun finally coming out had me taking long breaks from the library chilling out on the SWKT lawn with half the student body during finals week.  I think summer semester and me would not get along.  Tanner is some kind of crazy trooper.  He was going to take spring AND summer classes this year and I convinced him (in about 2.5 seconds) that this was a bad idea and he should take it off.  I have really good ideas.  Spring classes end right before he takes the test, so starting June 22 I will have my husband back to normal!  

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Really huge really awesome crazy important milestone

One of the biggest things about parenthood that I didn't anticipate was how insanely exciting it is when your child reaches milestones.  The tiniest little thing they do, when they've never done it before, is the greatest thing in the world.  This week, Camryn finally rolled over by herself!  I feel like I have this epic story to tell but. . . umm, I put her down on the floor on her stomach.  And then, she turned over. . . onto her back.  And, ya, that's pretty much how it went down.  Which sounds like the most ordinary thing in the world.  But guys!  Obviously, this was a completely extraordinary thing.  This was not just any baby developing any old motor skill here.  This was Camryn girl!! rolling over!!  Without any pushing, pulling, or other assistance of any form whatsoever!
Mabye you had to be there?  No, that's probably not it.  You probably had to be her mom.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Photo Shoot!

My friend Carolina Lindsay of Fancy Flutter Photography was kind enough to do this photography session for us and I'm thrilled at how they turned out!  She's trying to build her photography business and does great work, so if you're looking for a photographer, you should check her out here (plus she's a beautiful amazing person and I would just recommend her all around.  I actually met her in Guatemala and was very surprised to see her sitting in my relief society one day.)

I was trying to get pictures done as soon as possible before Camryn got any less newborn-looking, so we ended up doing it the morning of our moving day.  Not recommended.  But I'm so glad we squeezed them into our busy schedule when we did because she is growing so fast!  Some of you probably already saw a lot of these on Facebook, but there's a few here she didn't post.  They were done at the Provo City Library.  These are a lot of our favorites :)

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