Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Grand Cayman Trip

Way back last October we started planning a trip to Grand Cayman for Blake to do a Continuing Medical Education Seminar and to meet Cindy and Ken there.  It seemed like it would never come! We bought the plane tickets, and paid for the seminar way back in November.  Cindy and Ken have been there twice before and have access to a beautiful condo through Ken's boss, we were able to stay in the condo for free! Finally after what seemed like forever, June  4th arrived and we were on our way!

The map on the left is from my photo app on my phone, showing where the picture was taken.  I really didn't know where Grand Cayman was until we started planning this trip.  The map on the right shows where on the island we were staying.  We stayed in the beautiful Ritz Carlton and it was right on the beach!

Cindy and Ken arrived on the island about 2 hours before we did.  After a nice dinner in a great little restaurant we walked out onto the beach and saw this beautiful sunset.  It was breathtaking!

These are some beautiful photos taken from our 4th floor balcony in our Condo. We watched cruise ships come and go in the beautiful turquoise water.  The resort is absolutely beautiful, inside and out.  The last picture on the bottom right was taken from the 7th floor. The palm trees are getting in the way on 4th floor.  The center picture was taken on our last night on the beach.

There are lizards and geckos all over the island, they say they are the islands version of squirrels.  There were some big, and some tiny, some bright green and some brown.  There were also crabs, big, little, and a variety of colors.  There were also chickens and roosters roaming all over the island.

Grand Cayman is a British Island, so the steering wheel is on the right side of the car, and they drive on left side of the road.  I didn't ever get used to it! The traffic circles were the worst! I'm so glad Ken did all the driving, and he did a great job!  The top right picture is a sand wheelchair Blake thought was funny with its big tires.  I feel so bad that I didn't take many pictures inside the beautiful condo, it was just simply amazing.  Here's the only 2 I took! Blake is eating some chips in the beautiful kitchen.  Funny story about the bottom right picture; Blake turned the TV on for the first time and it was Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, which we watch all the time with Ryder at home.

Top left: Cindy and Blake by a palm tree. Bottom left: Beautiful orange tree that were all over the island. Center top: 2 of 6 lobsters from Blake's all you can eat lobster dinner.  Center bottom: Beautiful setting for a great meal.  Right: Interesting beach with all the rocks, such a contrast from the soft sandy beach at the resort.

We spent a lot of time on the beach.  Blake had class on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday mornings from 7-1.  Cindy and Ken went to Crossfit while he was gone, I got to go for walks and just hang out in the condo.  When they got back we would head out to the beach.  Top: First time on the beach just before the wonderful sunset. Bottom left: I had to get a picture of Blake ready to go out to the beach.  Sandals are not his usual attire! Center bottom: These great floaters are anchored out in the water. Right bottom: I can't even describe how soft and wonderful this sand feels on your toes, I've never felt sand like this anywhere.

Here we are hanging out on the beach.  I called these canopies that cover the beach chairs, covered wagons.  They were amazing though.  We had to put towels on our legs to avoid sunburn after awhile though.  The only way to cool down from the sun and humidity was to take a little dip in the beautiful water.

Blake didn't have class on Wednesday, so we took a little cruise out into the ocean.  The first stop was for a little bit of snorkeling.  The water was pretty choppy, but they said it was beautiful.  I just can't get over the beautiful turquoise water.

The next stop was Stingray city.  It's quite amazing that all of a sudden there is a sandbar, and Stingrays live there.  We didn't really get a good picture of the stingrays, but we touched a couple.  If you look closely, you can see them in the water.

The last stop was looking for starfish.  They saw a few, but not very many.  It was a beautiful little location.

Thursday afternoon we drove out to a Turtle Farm.  It was quite interesting.  There were some huge ones, some medium sized ones, some smaller ones and some eggs.  

Ken, Cindy and Blake picked one up and held it, but I was happy just to take pictures and look at them.  

On our last night there, I wanted to take some pictures on the beach.  We did one of the four of us with the timer on Ken's phone.  Cindy and Blake matched colors so nicely.

Some of the shots of Cindy and Ken, it was hard to quit taking pictures because of the beautiful surroundings, I kept wanting another from another angle.  I think these turned out really nice. Thanks for putting up with me and my picture taking obsession.

This was our 39th Wedding Anniversary! 39 years seem to have flown by when I think back.  Just like this little trip to the Cayman flew by way to fast. Thanks Cindy and Ken for the fun adventures!

Friday, June 16, 2017

"May"hem 2017

Just a few memories we made in May!

 Ryder fixated on the TV and Mickey Mouse, then checking out all the tulips.

 Molly checking out her shadow and new little seat.  Jared's taking Clark and Molly for a little spin on the trike.

Blake and I and Ryder visited the John Deere expo at Jensen's Grove.  Ryder had a blast splashing the pop cans in the bucket of the tractor.

May 5 - Blake and I took a little trip over to Twin Falls, we went to the temple then to see Shoshone Falls. It was amazing! So much water coming over the falls!

 May 6 - I can't believe I'm posting this picture! While the guys were out at the Lavas shooting guns, they found this snake! They ended up killing it, but not before getting some pictures.  Molly and Ryder loved splashing in the hot tub.

May 6 & 7 - We celebrated Randy's birthday on the 6th with hamburgers and a few presents. Since we didn't have a cake, we put a candle in a Ding Dong.  Ryder loved the cake and candles on his actual birthday.  (He turned the big 29!)

 Ryder's trying out the slide, throwing rocks in to the lake, helping Grandpa mow Grandma Great's lawn, and finishing off Grandpa's pop.

Maden, Annie and Clark are enjoying a picnic under their big umbrella and roasting marshmallows in their fire pit.  This is such a nice picture of Blake's mother, Helen with some beautiful flowers she got for Mother's Day.  Molly was a big girl and threw away her binky. She and Jared are standing by the bear at Black Bear Diner, and Molly is all dressed up and ready to go the Temple Open House.

Maden got to go fishing for a field trip in school, then he was dressed up like a teacher.  Annie had a great time flying the little kite we made.  She loves taking pictures and took this close up of me.

 May 20 - We celebrated Ryder's 2nd birthday! He had a lot of family and friends there to wish him a happy birthday!

Molly wanted to climb a tree when she saw Annie doing it. Clark, Annie and Maden trying out the cool Muana sand box Celia made. After Ryder's party, Clark and Molly were pretending to drive my car, so Maden and Annie climbed in for the ride.  I was still fixing buttons and turning things off and on for days. Annie brought her skate board and tried it out on our driveway.  She did really well for her first time.  Clark loved sitting on it and going down the slight slope of the driveway.  

Jared, Blake, Brian, Maden and Annie took the boat out for a little spin and some fishing.

May 23 - Ryder's real birthday.  I put 2 candles in his yogurt at breakfast, then bought some little cupcakes for candles at lunch.  He loved playing with the new cars, there is even a truck like his dads.

Jared, Nikelle and Molly went on a little camping trip, they took the trike and went for a walk. They said it was very green and beautiful.  Ryder got to touch a lobster at Red Lobster.  We were surprised he would touch it.  Brian had a tennis match, and Celia and Maden had baseball practice, so I went to tend Clark, he wasn't thrilled that I was there and wouldn't come any closer than the hall.  The tennis match was chilly, so Annie was all wrapped up in a blanket.  It was fun to watch Brian play tennis again.

 May 27 - We took a little trip to Yellowstone Bear World. We had to take our pictures in front of The Bear. Molly loved being free from her car seat and roaming around to everyone's laps.  The bears were pretty active.
 We went to the petting zoo, Ryder loved it, Molly did not! The goat loved Blake's food.  
Ryder and Molly loved the little rides.  They went on the train and the bumpy cars.  

Before Bear World, Blake, Randy, Brian and Annie went to Blacktail Reservoir for a little fishing time. After Bear World, Randy and Blake went to help Jared do some wiring, and Molly and Ryder had fun with some bubbles. 

Sunday May 28 - Brian's family came for dinner, Maden loves to play games, so Grandma Beth and I played with him.  Ryder and Clark played with tractors and Annie chilled in the little chair.

Memorial Day - We went to the Ammon Cemetery, Molly and Ryder loved playing around and looking at the headstones. 

Brian and Celia hosted a BBQ and combined it with a congratulatory celebration for Jared finishing school and passing his test.  He is now a Journeyman Electrician! Celia made this cute cake for the occasion.

After we ate, and the babies napped, then they had a great time jumping on the tramps.  They were pretty funny to watch, Clark is a good little experienced jumper, Molly and Ryder spent more time falling down, but they still giggled and loved it.

Jared, Randy, Brian, Maden and Annie took the boat back out to Blacktail.  Annie got tired and took a nap on the boat.  Blake took his mother and sat on the dock with her. She loved it, it was a good little outing for her.

Monday, May 15, 2017

April (and a little bit of May) 2017 Adventures

April 2, 2017
We watched General Conference and celebrated Celia's birthday, which is actually on the 3rd.  

April 8th - Easter Egg and Treasure Hunt - We had our Easter festivities a week early, we had planned to have it outside in our yard, but the weather was rainy, cold and windy.  Courtney offered to let us use her school and it was perfect.  

The kids had a great time searching for their prizes.  It was quite nice because they weren't hidden really well, perfect for these little ones.  They loved waiting in Courtney's classroom while their prizes were being hidden.  

After the hunting ended, it turned into a little bit of basketball time.  Jared helped the little ones dunk! Then it was a lively little game of lightning.

April 12 - 16 - Trip to LaVerkin, Utah - Randy and Jared planned a little trip to Southern Utah so we could take the boat out for the first time this year.  They found a really nice house to rent for the time we were there.  

Courtney, Nikelle, Molly and Ryder left on Wednesday night and stayed the night in Orem with Courtney's family.  Randy, Jared, Blake and I caught up with them on Thursday morning, then we all headed for LaVerkin.  Molly and Ryder had fun checking out the boat and the house we stayed in.

Friday morning, I stayed with the two little munchkins while the rest went to St. George to get the window in my car fixed and to the temple.  Ryder and Molly had a great time playing in the yard with bubbles and balls.  Ryder decided he had to eat Macaroni and Cheese because Molly was.  He hadn't really liked it much before then.  Molly showed him how to eat it, he kept saying good with every bite. I'm not sure how much ended up in his mouth, there was a lot in his lap, but he sure had a good time.

Friday afternoon, we took the boat out to Sand Hollow Lake.  We had a little problem starting the boat to begin with, but Jared and Randy got it going.  Molly and Ryder had a little picnic in the boat while it was being worked on.  

Everyone had a great time riding in the boat.  

Jared and Randy both tried their luck at water skiing.  They did really well, got up on the first try.  The lake was beautiful with the red cliffs and rocks.

Some random pictures from our time in LaVerkin.  Holding hands in the parking lot, Grandpa doing bubbles, Ryder not liking the grass to touch his legs, sticking letters on Ryders back in the tub, eating and eating, Jared, Randy and Blake looking at the scenery over a wall in a little park.

Saturday, we planned to go to a Splash Park in Washington, when we got there, the water park wasn't open yet so they let us go in a basketball court and shoot some hoops until the water park opened.  It was a great facility! They had a great time playing ball for a bit.  Jared had to go under to bleachers to find a ball, Molly was a great little cheerleader from the bench, Ryder and Molly had a great time climbing on the bleachers.  

The Splash/Water Park was really nice, the water was not cold, just a nice temperature.  The kids loved it.  Molly got really brave and loved jumping into the pool, she didn't even care when her head went under the water.  

On our way home on Sunday we found this fun chair at a gas station in Beaver.  We just had to sit in it and take a picture.  

April 28 - May 2

Brian and Celia took a little trip to Texas, so we got to spend some time with Maden, Annie and Clark.  We stayed at their house on school nights, but brought them to Blackfoot for the weekend.

Clark, Annie and I had lunch at McDonalds at 10:45am.  When you're the Grandma, you can do things a little differently! 

When we got to Blackfoot, Randy and Ryder came over to play.  Clark and Ryder had a great time racing to and from Grandpa.  Maden and Annie and I played a fun game and Ryder watched.  I guess Maden and Clark just wanted to roll around on the floor.  (Annie took a lot of these pictures.)

Annie loves to take selfies, and I love all the faces of Annie!

Clark and Ryder went for a ride with Grandpa and Randy.  They loved playing with the empty pop bottles.  Maden and Annie and I went to see Grandma Beth and Grandpa Chin Chopper.  I'm sad that I didn't get a picture of Maden and Grandma Beth playing air hockey.  Annie liked playing with Grandpa Chin Chopper.  We went over to the school and Annie loved the climbing wall.  Maden helped Grandpa Chin Chopper trim some grass under the trees, he thought it was kind of fun.  

Jared and Nikelle and Molly came down to help with some projects, so there was a lot of little ones here.  There was a lot of swinging, bubble blowing, smelling flowers, playing in the rocks and taking rides on four wheeler and lawn mower.  Maden and Annie also did a little craft and played some games that we didn't get any pictures of.

It's so fun to watch these three play together.  They all have to do the same things, if one is sitting up to the table, they all have to.  The bottom pictures make me laugh.  All five of these littles are very interested in Mickey Mouse Clubhouse while they eat.

All ready for church on Sunday.  Such cute kids! Clark is twins with Grandpa!

I bought the kids these pinwheels, it's so fun to see the simple pleasures of childhood.  I loved hearing Annie's laughter and seeing the delight on her cute little face.

We took the kids over to the playground at Maden's school.  They had a great time even though it was cold and windy.  Maden had a great time showing us around and playing everything.  He is very good at jump rope, and Clark had try it too.  

Annie loved climbing way up high, Maden loved playing a little baseball and Clark just wants to do everything the big kids are doing.

We met Nikelle and Molly at the Iona Library for story time, then the kids played on the playground there.  I love Molly and Annie's hair when they came down the slide. Clark loved the slides too.

Misc. April happenings.

Yes, this is snow! It was April 9th! We had snow again on the 27th and 28th! This is really winter that won't go away!

Just some random pictures from April.  Clark and Molly sharing a snack, Ryder's thrilled with new letters, more snow!, Molly wearing her daddy's hard hat in the car, celebrating Jared finishing school!, Molly going for a spin on her new trike, Ryder playing with letters!

More fun pictures, Ryder and Molly going for a ride on the trike with Grandma, little miss hollywood, Clark swinging on a big swing, Annie and Clark on a big slide, Clark going for a ride on his trike, and Ryder coloring.

Playing at the school playground by Grandma Great Purcell's house, then eating at Texas Roadhouse with her.

Ryder playing with the tulips, little Princess Molly, Ryder waiting for a ride on the lawn mower, then getting his rides with Grandpa.

Grandpa Chin Chopper made popcorn while Ryder and Molly watched, it's pretty fascinating. Molly loves helping her daddy mow the lawn. For some silly reason, Ryder took his shoe and shock off while we were shopping in Walmart.