Friday, July 31, 2009

yes, summer is dying (for me), BUT...

I only have a couple weeks left of this delicious summer vacation! Once a child of summer, always a child of summer. That's me. But I intend to fully enjoy the rest of what I have.

Next week I get to:

monkey around at Ponderosa State Park,

build sand castles,

pick and eat huckleberries,

enjoy lakeview sunsets,

and more, of course.

(All pictures courtesy of last summer's trip.)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


I've been enjoying the last few days with lovely Skabbys in town.
This little half Skab just makes me smile.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

another july birthday

This time it's Marmee's birthday. She's not out of country--just out of state at the moment. My mama is simply the best ever. She cooks the yummiest food. She lets me run with her. She taught me how to swim and swim well. She coaches so many kids and makes such a difference in their lives. She is kind. She is funny and fun. Here are some pictures of here, along with some commentary from me, of course:

Ma contemplates. She also puts up with all our reading habits. She's even picked up the reading bug herself.

Oh, here she is being contemplative again. Actually, I think she's being patient here. We'd just witnessed Sainte Chapelle and Dad was figuring out where to next.

Mom is the most perfect BYU model ever. She also sure knows how to use a fork and knife, continental style.

Ma makes friends so easily. She has a gift of instant connection. (BYU modeling again.)

Mother is gorgeous.

Ma smiles. She puts up with a whole lot of ugly singing and strange jokes. She's a good sport. And, no, this is not the last picture in which she advertises for Brigham's school. But that's what she gets for being a coach and owning so much sporty attire.

Mom knows how to say Champs de elysees.

Marmee makes Christmas lovely. She's such a beautiful Christmas morning angel.

Like I mentioned before, Ma knows how to cook.

Marmee has great communication skills. Here she interacts with the smallest cub.

Happiest of birthdays Marmee!
Thanks for being so wonderfully you.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

one more year as a teenager

It's my sister's birthday. Happy birthday Guya! You're far away in Mexico. Hmmm, perhaps this is a trend I ought to follow; Andrew was in France for his birthday and now Nat's abroad too. I doubt I'd be able to manage escaping to somewhere far away with my birthday being in the middle of the school year. I can always hope, though. Oh, but here I go like usual, talking all about myself--chatterchatterchatter. Let's celebrate the beauty that is Natalya.

Natalya glows. She also knows how to cast a shadow upon Josh. It must be said that he chooses to live in shadow, though, and it's not all her doing. Isn't she simply lustrous here?

Natalya plays nicely with her siblings. Yes, yes, I know she's 19 now and that's to be expected, but it still does make her a very good girl.

Natalya is pensive, thoughtful, contemplative, ruminative, cogitive, and wistful. (Notice: she's glowing once again.)

Natalya has no fear of mounted antlers. She also knows how to zip and unzip her jacket.

Natalya will kiss giraffe statues with me--now that's love.

Natalya is modest. See how she so delicately covers herself up with her coat?

Natalya has gorgeous hair. Sometimes it's long and sometimes it's not.

Natalya is an expert at Sunday walks. If you ever need a companion on a little walky, pick her.

Natalya knows how to take self-portraits. I could post a whole slew of them, but I wouldn't want her wrath to fall upon me. But this is her birthday, so let's all pretend that she has no way of having any wrath at all (nudge, nudge, wink, wink, you know what I mean, you know what I mean).

Natalya smiles. And just as she harbors no fear for mounted antlers, she has no fear for bald little brothers.

Happy birthday darling sister of mine!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

summer nights

concerts, friends, birthday girl, tie-dye shirts, kissy faces, amazing dance moves, crowd surfing, cloudy skies

summer nights are fun; they make me feel young (again).

Monday, July 13, 2009

happiness is

  • pink clouds
  • raspberries straight from the bush
  • overcast weather for a bike ride
  • 5 a.m. runs
  • cutting chard with my babiest brother
  • my journal
  • Swiss chocolate
  • lyrics, for example:
"My feet are buried in the sand, and there's a breeze.
There's a shadow. You can't see my eyes.
And the sea is just a wetter version of the skies.
Let's get a silver bullet trailer and have a baby boy.
I'll safety-pin his clothes all cool and you'll graffiti up his toys.
I've got a perfect body, but sometimes I forget.
I've got a perfect body cause my eyelashes catch my sweat."
--"Folding Chair" by R. Spektor
  • cleaning
  • notes written and pictures drawn during church
  • solo hikes
  • cat naps in the sunshine
  • signing up for two triathlons!
  • sea turtles, killer whales, and mermaids
  • a friend who has the skill and talent to pen-tattoo sea turtles, killer whales and mermaids (see below). It's said friend's birthday today! I'm certainly glad she was born.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

a little sunday reading

This morning I read "Why the Church Is As True As the Gospel" by Eugene England. Andrew and I were up late talking last night--discussing church related things; he suggested I read this article. I'm glad I did.

Happy Sabbath, everyone.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

because i like pictures and i more than liked this trip

Here are a few more pictures from our Europe trip:

day four

Wow, a full week has already passed since the fourth day of our bike trip. I won't go into great detail, but we rode 73 miles. Galena Summit was probably the hardest part of the day. Here's a picture of my dad and me once we've conquered the top.

And just as a clarification, the Josh pictured below is not my brother Josh, but another Joshua who's 17 years old.

Our bike trip was grand. The mountains and the river were gorgeous. I'm glad they let me come.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

day three

Left Challis to go back to Stanley. A rather uneventful day for most of us (I didn't even take pictures). I say most of us because Josh had another couple spokes snap off his back wheel. He didn't want to risk completely ruining the wheel, especially with more than 100 miles to go, so he had his first experience hitchhiking. An older lady picked him up in her big white van. Turns out she lives in her van, smokes unfiltered cigarettes, and has a dog. So Josh had a nice time. He actually had his spokes replaced in Stanley and rode back to meet us as we were taking our last break of the day.

It was cool to ride back on the same road. We were still next to the river. I just adore water and there's something about the pace of biking that lets me absorb my surroundings a lot more than driving does. Running's nice too, of course. But biking's just more smooth and fluid somehow.

So another 58 miles down. And we finally discovered THE place to eat in Stanley: the Bakery. Oh yum. I had risotto cakes, green beans, yams, and mushrooms. And the best pie I've had (outside of home): peach raspberry. So good.

day two

Breakfast wasn't spectacular: eggs and pancakes. We got some water from the "merc'" because the sulfur in our motel's water didn't go down smoothly enough. And off we went.

Our first stop was at the hot springs. Here's my dad and Jim. The water come straight out was scalding hot, but as it mixed with the Salmon River it settled into a nice, bearable temperature.

We had a few breaks in riding about 58 miles to Challis. It was so lovely biking right next to the river. We got to Challis and soaked again, this time in the hot tub. Had dinner and then crashed again. (Yes, all we do is eat, bike, eat, bike, eat sleep...)

My back tire flatted, but Dad helped me fix it up with a new tube in a jiffy.

day one

We woke up at our cozy bed and breakfast in Hailey, Idaho. Our hostess made us yummy breakfast: corn hotcakes and parmesan eggs. Then we geared up and found a spot to leave the cars (the fire station) and took off for our first day of riding. There actually was a nice bike trail that went for about 14 miles into Sun Valley and Ketchum. We stopped at a few bridges on the way out because of Mark's interest in the structure.

We stopped for lunch--I had a yummy "grown-up grilled cheese"--at Galena Lodge before heading up to the summit. Here's my dad and Josh at the top. It was nice and warm by that time of the day, but the push to the summit wasn't as hard as I'd nervously anticipated.

Then we enjoyed some nice downhill and flat before rolling into Smiley's where we all indulged in shakes. I had huckleberry. You might have already noticed my fixation on food, and I've nothing to deny. This trip for me was all about food. Just joking, of course; I also loved the riding and the company.

We'd heard that we had to stop at Redfish Lake Lodge to eat, so we complied and had dinner--I had salmon mac' and cheese--after soaking our legs in the lake's cold water. The setting is absolutely gorgeous. I almost wished I had packed my wetsuit because I just wanted to glide through the water.

We arrived in Stanley just before dark. I enjoyed a nice sulfuric shower before crashing to sleep.

Day one: about 80 miles. My legs held up fine. My hands felt pretty numb that first day, and I started to feel the effects of sitting on a bike seat for 80, but it was worth it.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

day zero

This was the sunset the night we made our way up to Idaho. Too bad I couldn't take a picture without the car window between the real deal and my camera. But it was a grand way to start the trip. I'll be posting more later about it all, but I did survive. I had a lovely time and my butt is really the only thing moderately sore.