Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Birthday Boy, and His Daughter!

We finally made it back to Nicki & Mckay's late Friday night and were planning on going into the city Saturday morning. As luck would have it, that was the day the big snow storm hit the east coast and so we stayed home. We just hung out and watched a lot of football and visited. We didn't realize the storm had been so devasting, it was just pretty from our point of view. Of course, next morning going to church was a different story. It was pretty icy out there. Again, I was so busy just watching the snow storm, I didn't get any pictures. Really, it wasn't any different from the dozens of snowstorms we get in Utah every winter, so I wasn't that motivated to be capturing it on camera.

Sunday was our last night with the Dunn's. We left Monday for the airport and a long trip back home. It was hard to say good-bye to the kids, but knowing they will be here for Christmas makes it much easier. Too bad we live so far from each other!

Friday, December 2, 2011


Our trip to New England was so much fun, but as I am writing blogs to journal it, I realize that (1) we didn't take enough pictures and (2) the ones we have don't do it justice. I can't even remember the name of this little town up the coast of Maine, but it was a beautiful little town. 

We drove across a very low bridge to this island in the back of the first photo below. Just after we got off the bridge, we saw this cute little building (we loved the buildings/NE architecture out there), which just happens to be the library. I should get a photo of the library here just for comparison's sake (ours is extremely ugly). Even their libraries are cute! The homes over on the other side of the island were amazing. Again, I was so busy gocking at them, I didn't get any pictures. But the other problem is that there are so many trees, I couldn't have gotten decent pictures even if I had remembered!
After driving around the "rich" side of the island, we got back on the road and headed even further up the coast. We stopped at this little "lobster pound" for my very first and very yummy lobster roll. Basically it was lobster on a hotdog bun. The lobster was good, but for heaven's sake, if you are going to serve it on a bun couldn't we get something a little fancier than a hotdog bun. Lobster good, bun disappointing. 

When we got to this place, we weren't sure how much further we had to go until we got to Bar Harbor, which was our final northern destination. We had a huge problem reading maps on this trip. Not that we couldn't get oriented, but we could never get our minds to equate the distance, even with the little guide at the bottom of the map. We're just too used to driving in the wide open spaces of the west. We would look at the map and think we had hours to go to get somewhere and just a few minutes later, we would be at our destination. From this lobster pound we were only about 1.5 hours from Bar Harbor - yeah!

Again, crossing another bridge and a too-late picture. We drove over a very narrow highway to get to the kind-of-island Bar Harbor. It is a beautiful little island way up in the northeastern corner of Maine. Used to be the playground of the rich and famous, most notably the Rockafellers. There were tons of these little stone bridges all over the island, but again due to "lookin out my window" I only got one picture. Kent wouldn't back up the highway a few feet so I could get more pictures of the bridges???The island was just so beautiful. Home of Acadia National Park. Gorgeous.

This is the beautiful hotel we stayed at while we were in Bar Harbor. This is just the tiny little wing Kent and I stayed in, it was a huge hotel. Our room was right on the end with a beautiful view of the water. 
Here are some pictures of the rest of the island. The camera just doesn't quite capture the beauty of this place.

We only spent one night in Bar Harbor and then the next morning we headed south again. It took us about three days to drive up to Bar Harbor and we were going to make the drive south back to Nicki & Mckay's in one day. Lots of driving, but again, we were amazed at how quickly we were covering the distance in New England. We finally got to York, Maine, around 5 p.m. York is the southern most coastal town on Maine before you get into Mass. It is a beautiful little resort town so we stopped there for dinner and to look around. Vacation here anyone?
We only saw a few light houses in Maine, which I thought was weird. Isn't Maine supposed to have tons of light houses. This one was really cute, and if it had been earlier in the day, we might have walked out to it, but it was getting late and dark and we still had to get through Massachusetts and most of Connecticut to get to our reservation at the Dunn's. The house in the picture above the light house is not typical of York, but it also isn't unusual. Too much money here on the east coast. Oh, while we were driving around York looking for a place for dinner, we were temporarily detoured around the elementary school as it was their Halloween parade. It was a cute little community with a cute little school with cute little children. I could live here! Okay, more later.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Deerfield, Mass and New Hampshire

Oh HELL-p! I can't seem to figure out how to post a blog. There are weird spaces all through this blog and a photo that I can't get turned the right direction. Nicki, take a crack at it - you know my password. 

We left Nicki and Mckay's Tuesday morning and headed up to New Hampshire. It was a beautiful drive with lots to look at. We found the Yankee Candle store, which boasts over 10,000 candles. We didn't smell them all, but we did spend quite a bit of time here. Kent was a pretty good sport about it.

We also spent a few minutes driving around Deerfield, Mass, which is a pretty cool little community. The whole time we were there we kept saying to each other, "We could live here". We really loved New England, we love the architecture, the beautiful leaves, etc. I don't know that it is so much the whole New England thing, or if it's just that it is something different to look at than what we see here in the west. But regardless, it was fun to look and imagine what it would be like. 

We crossed a few beautiful bridges, but since I was busy gocking at them, I usually missed a great picture until it was too late. Obviously, I'm not the best photographer (or maybe I just need a new camera),  but we saw some amazingly beautiful bridges and scenery.

I'm not sure what's up with this picture. I did not have my camera turned, nor was it in this position when I uploaded it from my file, but for some reason, every time I try to post it, it turns. So, look at it sideways! We found a great cemetery in New Hampshire. I'm not sure if all cemeteries out here look like this one or not, but we spent a lot of time here walking around and looking at headstones, really old headstones. This picture, like most of my pictures, don't do justice to what we were really seeing. What can I say,- weird fascination. 

We only saw one covered bridge and it was way up in Northern New Hampshire. It as fun walking around this little New England town, but I have to say I was a bit nervous. There was a kid playing with a switchblade that kept following us. Kent kept telling me he was just some kid killing time, but it felt much more sinister to me that just some innocent kid  hanging around. I was kind of nervous and was especially happy to get off this bridge.
The bridge crossed this little river.
We were in Littleton, NH on a kind of chilly day. The town here has a pumpkin festival where people carve their pumpkins, then put them out on little islands or rocks in the middle of the river. Unfortunately, we were here several days before Halloween and there was only one pumpkin out in the middle of the river and you can't even see it in this picture. I thought that sounded like a fun, but cold, pumpkin parade.
We were just a tad late for the beautiful fall colors, especially the further north we drove. But I did get this great shot with the sun just right. What we did see was so beautiful and breath taking. God put some amazing colors together for us. It was beautiful.

Friday, November 25, 2011

New England - Finally!

It took me a while to get all my blogs caught up, but finally I'm ready to post our trip to see Nicki and Mckay. We flew in to JFK late on Thursday night and through phone tag, Nicki found us. We made it safely to their home in Connecticut and crashed. On Friday morning Mckay had to work and Nicki had a couple of classes at school, so Kent and I slept in and just relaxed.
After Nicki got home from school, she thought she would give Kent a good scare and told him she had learned how to take blood that day and she needed to practice on him. She came at him with the needle and we (she and I) had a good laugh while Kent was jumping around on the sofa trying to get away from her. We miss out on Nicki's antics at home!!!
The whole thing was more than Kent could handle. We couldn't talk him into going shopping with us to Stew Leonard's. Did you see that STEW LEONARD'S. I'd seen this place a couple of years ago on the Food Network and when I found out Nicki lives close enough to shop there, I made her promise she would take me. See, there I am in front of Stew Leonard's.
It wasn't quite the rush I thought it would be, but still we had fun. And, it was kind of fun going to a place I've had on my list for awhile!

Friday night (I think, maybe it was Saturday) we went to Nicki and Mckay's favorite Greek restaurant. I've been there before with N&M, and the food didn't disappoint. I love their food.

On sunday we ditched church. Nicki and I wanted to go to church, but the boys begged us to skip it. I felt kind of bad about that, especially since we had just been on the phone with Regan, Kenna and Trevor and told them they should go. Oops! We went apple picking instead!
The apples were so crisp and good fresh from the tree, I think I ate at least three because we had to try each kind of apple we picked. It was kind of a nippy day and even though I had stuffed my tummy with apples, I was still ready for fresh apple cider doughnuts! Best ever and I don't even really like doughnuts! That's all for now. More to come later.

Backing Up Again!

This is why it is important to keep updated on your posts. I have to back track a bit and add a couple of events that we thought were important.

The end of May Nicki was able to come and visit us while McKay dedicated his life to studying for his exam the first week in June. We spent time making pillow covers and curtains for Nicki &
Mckay's apartment.

We also had another "girl party" for those who could come. We had a great time. You will all be spared our "Blue Steel" poses!

In the spring of this year we noticed a bird was building a nest on this thing that is on our front porch. This hangs just outside our laundry room window. A little robin would sit on her nest all the time, and if I went in the laundry room too early or late and turned on the light she would fly away. Also, if we were too loud in the laundry room, like slamming the door that goes out to the garage, she would fly away. So Kenna, especially, made it a point to remind us, daily, not to be too loud or not to turn on the light when it was dark unless we really needed to. Usually when I go into the laundry room in the dark, I do need light, so there were lots of time the mommy bird would fly away. Kenna also got really upset if the dogs happened to go out the front door because they would also scare the bird away. After a lot of weeks of tip-toeing around momma bird, the eggs finally hatched. This is what we got!

Anytime the momma bird would fly away, we'd go over and peek at the baby birds. We were surprised at how quickly they tried to fly out of the nest, like within a couple of weeks. They grew fast and I suppose the nest was crowded as there were three baby birds in there. They would fly to the garden, which is just in front of the porch, but couldn't get all the way back up into the nest, so would perch on the railing. We tried all the time to get close enough to pet the bird and get them to not fear us. I got close enough to touch one of the birds once, but as soon as I put my hand on it, it flew away and that was the last time any of us got close.We thought they were cute, but when Nicki saw these pictures, she thought they were disgusting. We loved our baby birds.

Trevor and Kenna at Youth Conference

This post and the next one are out of order, "oops". Around the end of June, Kenna and Trevor had a chance to go to Youth Conference down in St. George, Ut. It is so beautiful, and hot, down there. The kids were able to go to the St. George Temple and do baptisms the first day there were there -- while they were still clean.
After that, it was camping in the dirt, hiking in 105 degree heat and finding pools to swim in.
Kenna and her friend, Kenzie Gomm - really hot and sweaty!
They saw beautiful scenery, of course.
A little bonding time for the sibs.
They also had and "opportunity" to work in the cannery down there. None of the kids were looking forward to it, yet, as often turns out, they had a great time working and doing some service for others.

Trevor and his friend, Jackson, at the cannery.
Kenna and some of the other girls - loving the hair nets!