Saturday, August 20, 2011


We are back to blogging my friends. We have finally figured out our computer/picture issue and recently got our camera back after having to ship it back to Nikon for a glitch to be fixed (under warranty yahoo!) So now I'm making up for the whole summer. It might be a bit overwhelming and you might want to get a snack while you catch up on all that we've been up to but it'll be worth it. Let's see if you can make it all the way through August without a break... ;) It's 5 posts long!!
One thing I've realized while spending.... 6 hours doing this now, is that we've really had a GREAT summer. I'm feeling so blessed. So without further adieu let us begin

The whole reason we went to Virginia!
Grant was celebrating his first birthday and we wanted to experience as many FIRSTS as we could with him in one week.
the second reason we came to Virginia was to understand (and get hooked on) the cupcake craze. Boy did we get HOOKED!!
Round ONE
We enjoyed this round while watching Tangled.
Carrytown, round two
Round three, Frostings
Round four, back to Two Sweet - we decided after tasting so many, this place was our favorite. The bunny was for Grant
I wish I could fit all the pictures of the inside of their house, but you just get the outside. It's ADORABLE!! If my house looked like this, I could totally live in Virginia. It's just classic. I miss these guys!!
Grant's FIRST experience touching bark.... oh how the feet can feel
Grant's FIRST experience eating a leaf... shh don't tell Brooke ;)
Grandma Jo had given Grant this giraffe for Valentine's day and he LOVED to suck on it's head. It was so cute to hear him say 'raf" and know how much he loved his Giraffe.
Bath time!
Berkley plantation. It was awesome to see a real plantation house and all it's land. This house was the site of the REAL FIRST Thanksgiving.
Me, Brooke & mom at the Berkley plantation gates
I have my own store... every girl's dream ;)
Mom and I on the subway.... Brooke, you're facing the wrong direction
This place is HUGE
They had a special ceremony at the tomb of the unknown soldier while we were there. It was aww inspiring to feel the respect in the silence.
Grant's FIRST experience with grass.... he did surprisingly well.
It reminded me a lot of the American cemetery in France. It's a little overwhelming.
The Mall
There were so many things I learned while walking around this place with my mom. She retains interesting facts about everything. She was my personal tour guide.
We saw Washington's monument, Korean, Vietnam, the White house, National Archives and walked and walked and walked. Good thing I had a GPS in my phone.
This was part of the WWII memorial on our way from Washington's to Lincoln's. They're a lot farther apart than you'd think.

What an experience
I was so clever and used my iphone to find the nearest Hard Rock. Wouldn't you know, it was almost right up the street from where we were.....
Carrytown had a Galaxy Diner and I waited for about 20 min. while talking to Carl for my FIRST fried PICKLE!!! It was worth it
The kid is HILARIOUS. he would never leave his socks on long enough to put shoes on.
At For the Love of Chocolate, I found sour pickles to try!! They were so good. I love trying new things.
We found a vintage sore in Carrytown and I fell in love with this 1920's hat. I love the 20's and 50's styles so classic
We loved our tour of the HUGE Whole Foods, and Grant loved enjoying his FIRST taste of gelatto. Although it was an interesting try, I do not recommend the avocado flavor
Grant's FIRST petting zoo!
We celebrated Grant's 1st birthday on Saturday. Time went by so fast. He LOVES his Hop Hop, so Brooke enlisted Grandma Jo to make his bunny birthday cake. She's amazing right?
Birthday boy!
Brooke's ingenious idea to give him red velvet cake showed up so well on his white onezie to show how much he enjoyed his cake. He was so kind and gave his mom the first lick of the frosting.
After the cake it was time for presents, and I was so excited to give him his FIRST bean bag!! probably more excited than he was.
I had unbelievably so much fun in Virginia, it was like a therapeutic retreat. Thank you SO MUCH Bee and J it was just PERFECT!!
I introduced and consequently got Brooke hooked on Starbucks vanilla bean!! (you're welcome ;)
I surprised Alex by hiding an Easter basket at his parents house, where he was staying, before I left. It was so fun to hear him hunt for it and the surprise in his voice when he wondered how I'd done it.
Last, but certainly not least, in the month of April the future King of England was married to his lovely bride Katherine - let's admit it, we call her Kate.
My wonderful sister and brother-in-law who live in England sacrificed their time to wait on the sidelines to snap this picture and graciously sent it to me, so I could feel as much a part of the action as I could. No I didn't stay up to watch it, but I had it all recorded and was thrilled to relive the experience while wearing my authentic blue sapphire engagement ring replica!
Thank you RAYNE & TOM!

Riding through May

Dad wanted to take a ride up to Promintory point the last Saturday in May so we hopped on the bikes and started driving. I hadn't been on a ride this long with my dad and his bike before, but I was definitely looking forward to it. I'd never been to Promintory before and I love learning history.
They do a complete reinactment of the Golden Spike happening.
Me, Elaina & Jacob.... and the actual conductor of the trains :)
They asked dad to participate in the reinactment. He brought the gold spike!! And he wonders where we get our flare for dramatics ;)

Dad and Jacob next to the Jupiter
It was definitely a fun way to spend the day. Something I'd never experienced before. I had no idea how long the drive was.... guess I missed part of it when I fell asleep for about 40 min on the back of my dad's bike. No one's sure how this could even happen, but when you're tired, you're tired.

Summer has begun - June

Jim and Taunya took the Martin clan to St. George for a weekend and it was fantastically HOT!! In all aspects of the word.
We started off Friday night at an amazing art village in Kayenta that was fantastically inspiring.
Amazing that we live in a desert but only see it occasionally. Heavenly Father is an amazing artist.
Alex was trying to "understand" the art
We had the most delicious mint lemonade I've ever had. It truly was refreshing. mm mm good
Alex and Ryan spent Saturday morning golfing. I was so happy he had someone to go with.
How could you not LOVE this face! This is one of several pictures of Rylie's mouth filled to the brim, and she's still smiling. She's amazing!
We braved the heat and took a hike in the desert.
It was a beautiful Sunrise, but we've learned that sunsets seem to be the most amazing. The rocks appear to literally be on fire... we'll catch one next time :)
Thanks to the Martins and to Steve. We had such a great weekend!