Saturday, July 31, 2021

road trip

 I have two more days until I go back to work. I'm extra sad because my working from home is officially over for good. I know that once I get into the routine of things again it will feel normal...but it is a tad harder mentally knowing I'll never get to work from home again. 

We had a fun last trip of the summer up to visit some good friends in Idaho. While the time on the road was long, it was so worth it. We first stopped in Vegas and it didn't disappoint. The kids just loved it. We walked around some of the big hotels and the vastness that is that city really hit them.

We next drove all the way to Boise and spent the next few days visiting with our friends, Matt and Jana. I'll admit, despite doing some fun things like taking the kids to a recreation area (roller coaster, chair lift, etc.), some of my most favorite times were sitting and talking (such great conversations!) out on their back porch, which to me was like sitting outside in a resort. So green and relaxing. Our kids got along so well and the time really couldn't have gone much better.

On the way home, we decided to break up our long travel day and spent the night in Provo, UT. We all commented on how fun it was to see different cities along the way and just be together as a foursome. We ate dinner at a pizza place which had the best, most unique breadsticks we have ever had! Last night I tried to recreate them and it did not go so well... :)

Kendall just returned from summer camp. She simply glowed as she described her week to us. She absolutely adored it. Tomorrow they will head up to Debbie and Wayne's for, "cousins week" (Hannah and Lauren will join them). We do this every year and it really helps us out since I typically have to go to work a week earlier than them. Then when they return, we will tackle what will be quite the year of juggling. With Cam at a different school AND in cross country, our weekly drop offs and pick-ups have become a lot more complicated! 

Wednesday, July 7, 2021


In looking at our pictures over the last month, I've realized we have spent a lot of time in the mountains. But first, I'll start with our boy's graduation from 8th grade!

*Here Cam is at an awards' ceremony the day of his promotion ceremony. He'll be attending Yucaipa High School next year and has already started practicing with the cross country team. I can confidently say he has found his niche with running. :)

*Another hike with my sister. We've been able to do several over this past year.

*Whether it is watching at home, or in a theater, I almost always get ancy during movies and rarely want to finish them in one sitting. This changed, however, when I took the kids to see Cruella. I LOVED it!

*Every summer we head out to visit my friend, Jen and her family for the afternoon. We always have such a great time and so far, the kids seem to pick up right where they left off. :)

*Hiking Mt. Baldy has, by far, been our biggest hike of the summer. This was Kendall's first time and she was a champ! What a feeling to be so, "on top of the world" once reaching the summit!

*Chris' friend let us use his timeshare property this past week up in Big Bear. We had such a fun time together. My parents joined us for a night and were able to see a great 4th of July fireworks show.

We took the kids kayaking one morning. I rented a paddleboard. I have only been paddleboarding a small handful of times in my life and I honestly can't think of many activities I love more!

One of the highlights for me was my early morning walk around the beautiful homes that surrounded the resort, followed by coffee and reading on our patio.

*The kids (Kendall especially) took a renewed liking to Solitaire!

Saturday, June 5, 2021

kendallorian for historian!

*Kendall celebrated her 12th birthday last month with a few friends from school. They played a water balloon toss game, painted nails, and decorated cupcakes.

*Tomorrow Cam and I will ride with my dad after a few weeks off. During our last ride (pic below), my dad's tire hit something (we're still not sure what) and he took a pretty bad fall. He's been healing/recovering and he feels ready to tackle another ride now. 

*Last summer Susan and I had planned to take my parents away for a couple nights to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary. Due to Covid, we thought it might never happen. Luckily we were able to book a night in Big Bear a few weeks back. We hadn't been away, just the four of us, in over 20 years! Such fun!!

*Kendall was baptized a few weeks back. What a special day. We were so proud that she initiated wanting to get baptized, but then also proud of the sweet speech she prepared for the actual baptism. We celebrated afterward with the whole family.


*Kendall ran for student council this year. Kind of handy to have a graphic designer in the family for her posters! While she didn't win the position she was running for, she was chosen to take a different position, which I think will end up being a lot of fun for her.

*Memorial Day found us on a short hike with my sister. 

*That night we took the kids to Red Robin.

*Yesterday was my official last day of work for the year. I have a couple straggler IEP meetings next week, but otherwise, it feels great. The past few weeks have involved a ton of work and I heartily welcome summer. :)


Saturday, May 1, 2021


 *Chris' parents came down and we were finally able to celebrate Christmas. Wayne made each one of us a personalized sign, which I just loved!

*This is the only picture I have from Easter. We had my family over and it was the first time we all ate a meal indoors together in months!!

*The kids have been able to have a couple of slumber parties with my sister's girls. I can't believe they leave in only a couple of months already (they will have been here a year)!

*I've had a recent realization that all these years, I've said I love to cook...and I really don't. Baking? Yes. Cooking, not so much. I've tried a few new recipes over the last several weeks and they all have been met with so-so reviews...which hasn't really done much for motivating me to try more. I won't list my regular rotation of meals because it would be a tad embarrassing/pathetic. ;(

*I am now required to go in to work for two hours most days of the week. I otherwise can continue working from home.  I know I will never be able to work from home like this again. Oh, how I have LOVED it. I have gotten into such a great groove in the mornings. After sitting down with my coffee, I allow myself 1-2 minutes of watching this screensaver. So weird, I know, but it relaxes me as I start my day. I also have loved how it has allotted me the time for my morning walks. A couple new podcasts I'm enjoying:

This one just came out with a series on Hitler and it's fascinating!

*On this one they interview famous couples who have been married a long time. Really interesting and fun to listen to.

Sunday, March 14, 2021

hiking, shopping, and walking

Passing the year mark of quarantine life was pretty weird and I'm also so thankful that things are looking better with more and more people getting vaccinated. Here are a few things we've been up to:

My dad was unable to make this hike, but this served as Kendall's longest hike to date and she did awesome! This is one of my all time favorites, Murray Hill. The weather was perfect and we had such a fun morning.

The kids were able to attend a one day winter camp with church. I knew they would have a great time, but I didn't know quite how amazing they would claim it was. They both said it made them feel so "normal" with getting to be with friends and do all the winter activities.

A teenage boy's appetite is no joke, however also not a joke is Cam's insatiable appetite for Honey Nut Cheerios. It is very common to see him walking around the house holding the Costco-size bag, snacking as he goes. :)

We went on a really pretty nature walk/hike in Indian Canyon (Palm Springs) with the whole family.

Lauren, one of our cousins, came over to spend the night. She and Kendall slept out on the trampoline, baked, and talked, talked, and did more talking. ;)

We went shopping one afternoon with my sister, her girls, and my mom. Kendall had such a fun time  that she has requested we go again for her birthday. :)

Yesterday we attended a Beaumont 5K. Cam ran and the three of us walked. It was FREEZING starting out, but luckily we quickly warmed up and we had a great time.

Thursday, February 11, 2021

still more outside!

 Not much has changed since I last blogged in that all of our family get togethers have continued to take place outside. We are hopeful seeing the numbers go down a little as well as the fact that both my parents (since they are 65+) and I  (since I work in education) have been able to get the first vaccine. We continue to make the most of what we are able to do.

A few nature walks...

A hike with just myself and the kids...

Joshua Tree to celebrate my niece's birthday...

A pandemic will never keep us away from our beloved Cheesecake Factory. We got our order to go and had such a nice lunch out in the desert.

The kids were so excited in the days leading up to our snow. It may not have been much, but for us it was pretty magical to watch...

This is one of our favorite and most unique hikes. It's quite a ways away and I always find myself wondering as we drive, "Is this really worth it?" But it never disappoints...