Tuesday, June 30, 2009

End of June

We had a few activities to finish out the month. Most of them involved this:

Did you think that was me? No, Katie only sounds like me on the phone!

I am so glad we built a pool a few years ago. Not only is it a great way to stay cool, it's a great place for a photoshoot.

Rachael's friend Brooke

Anna on the trampoline

Megan looking adorable

Rachael the master at posing

We had our good friends, the Marshall's over.

Orson and Eli grilling our food

Dixie checking out the girls trick

Katie, Taran, Emma, Megan, Anna, Rachael

Finally a couple of girlfriends took me to lunch to celebrate my birthday.

We went to a great little place called "Sauce"

The inside of my pizza was delicious

I never did get to taste Dixie's salad

Here's why they say blonde's have more fun. Karry is a lot of fun!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Summer Reading

Well hello to everyone. I have some great (well I might be exaggerating) summer reading for you. I have finally updated the blog with 12 new posts. Some of them are rather lengthy. Just in case you care what we are doing, get your spectacles on and enjoy. Thanks for stopping by and scrolling down.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Twenty and counting

Today we celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary. We started the day by waking up at 4:00 a.m. and taking Nathan to the airport for his trip to Europe. Then it was back to bed.
We met here for dinner.

Orson had a few surprises up his sleeve.
At least he had one big one!
When I was pregnant with Nathan Orson bought me a ring for Mother's Day. We called it my maternity ring because I had outgrown my wedding ring. It was a small gold band that I wore since that day. For 17 years that band has reminded me of the birth of each of my 5 children.
Well, those birthing days are over, and it's time for the big girl ring as we are fondly calling it. It is 14K white gold with 1.2 karats of diamonds. Did I mention that I love diamonds? Wow, what a surprise.

If you've never been to the Melting Pot to have their fondue, you have got to go. It is so much fun.
Here I am with all my goodies from the evening.
Words can't even express how much I love and appreciate Orson. Thanks for loving me all these years and blessing me with the most amazing family. I look forward to the next 20.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day

What would we do without him? Thanks for all your hard work for our family. We love you!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Dream Trip

About 2 1/2 years ago, when Orson turned 40, I threw him a huge surprise party with over 100 people. Afterwards I told him, "When I turn 40, I don't want a party, just take me out of the country." Well, true to his word, in honor of my birthday, and our 20th wedding anniversary, we took a big trip. Now, this is only the 3rd time in 20 years we have taken a big trip by ourselves, except for our honeymoon. In 1997 we went to Florida for 5 days. In 2004 we spent 9 days in Hawaii. This past week we stayed at an all inclusive, couples only resort in CANCUN! I will spare you all 200 pictures, but will give you a small glimpse into our week.

I couldn't begin our adventure without telling about our travels. We had some United Airline miles and so we booked our "free" flight along with the $60 in fees per person. In the months since we originally booked our flights, they were changed 3 times due to "flight reductions." So, we left our home at 4:00 a.m. on June 10. Nathan drove us to the airport. Our flight left Phoenix at 6:00 a.m. and we arrived in Los Angeles at 7:10 a.m. Wait, we're going the wrong direction. After a 2 hour layover, we boarded Alaska Airlines to fly to Cancun. Who knew? We had just over a four hour flight and made it to Mexico around 3:00. First you have to get in line and go through immigration. Plus with the swine flu outbreak we had to fill out more paperwork about our health. After picking up our luggage we waited in another LONG line to re-scan our luggage. Then we got to play a little game. We got to push a button and if the light came up green, then you got to keep walking. If it was red, they went through all of your luggage. We got the green light. Then we were accosted before we got out the door by salespeople trying to get us to come visit their resort. Then it was off to find the shuttle for the resort. We finally made it around 6:00 p.m. Wow, that only took 12 hours.

But let me tell you, it was worth the wait.This was the most beautiful beach and water I have ever seen.
Here is the Sun Palace Resort that we stayed in.
We were on the top floor with beautiful views.
Orson checking into our room.
Every night we had our room decorated.

Can you see the double jacuzzi in the background? Fabulous!!!!

The great thing about an all inclusive resort is that your food and activities have already been paid for. The Palace Resorts have 11 properties with 4 being in close proximity to where we were, so you good eat at all of them. Our resort had a steak house, Italian restaurant, Mexican restaurant and poolside snack bar.
When my seafood soup said it had shrimp in it, they weren't kidding.

My cannelloni was delicious.

This was dinner at the Mexican restaurant.

Our favorite meal was at a Japanese restaurant over at the Cancun Palace. Here is how we got there.It was only 15 pesos for both Orson and I each way.

This was our chef.
making my fried rice.

A volcanic onion.
There was so much food!

One day we did what was called the jungle tour. We left from the Iguana Laguna.
You can see how it got its name. They were everywhere.
We were in a group of 8 and each couple got their own speed boat. We drove through the lagoon and out into the ocean for about 20 minutes. Then we snorkled for probably 45 minutes. There was a coral reef and tons of fish. It was so beautiful. I thought I would be scared, but I actually found it to be peaceful.
Orson driving the boat.
Our guide.
Our guide's boat. I cannot get over the color of the water.

This is the Moon Palace. It is the largest of the resorts with over 2500 rooms. Our resort only had about 250 rooms.
By far our favorite experience was swimming with the dolphins. We spent an hour in the water with them. It was incredible.

Reading on our balcony was a great way to start the morning.

This was our view from the restaurant where they had the breakfast and lunch buffet.

This was our view from the snack bar by the play pool. There were four different pools.

This is what we saw when we walked outside.
My babe lounging on the beach.
Last minute pictures before heading to the airport. It was hard to say goodbye.

Now, I have to document our trip home as well. We got on the resort shuttle at 9:40 a.m. We got to the airport about 10:00 and after filling out the medical form asking if we were sick, we all got our temperature taken right there in the terminal. Then we got in the line for United airlines which did not open until 10:30.
When they finally opened, we were informed our flight had been delayed an hour. Plus our suitcase weighed too much, so we had to take our laptop our and carry it on. Our flight finally left at 2:00 after our suitcases had sat on the tarmac during a thunderstorm. We then took a four hour flight to Chicago. Coming through immigration and customs in America took about 3 minutes. Very interesting! After a 3 hour layover in Chicago, we were finally boarding for our 4 hour flight home at 9:00 p.m. We landed at 10:45 Arizona time and got home at 11:30, which was 1:30 a.m. to our weary bodies.
But, the very best part of leaving, was coming home. Here's what we found.
A clean house.

A sign from each of the girls. Nathan was away at EFY or I'm sure he would have made us a sign, too.

A sight for sore and tired eyes. All is well!
Enjoy the slideshow of beach scenes.