Friday, August 16, 2013

Griffin is 5!!

I can’t believe that baby of mine turned 5!  The weekend before Griffin’s birthday, Gigi and Pap stayed with us in our home.  It was a lot of fun having them here with us.  On Saturday, we went to the Speedpark to celebrate!  The boys played miniature golf and then, Griffin and Ammon went for a ride in the go-karts.


Noah was nervous and didn’t want to ride, so he stayed with Gigi to watch.


Griffin had so much fun on the go-kart and after a couple times around the track…


he let go of the steering wheel long enough to wave to me for a second.


He’s lucky to have such a fun dad!


After the go-karts, Griffin requested ice cream from Cold Stone.  He got dark chocolate ice cream with… peanut butter mixed in, I think.


Saturday evening, I started working on his cake.  He really wanted a cake that looked like Link’s shield from The Legend of Zelda.  I’ve never played the game and I know nothing about Link.  Gigi brought some supplies that I would need and I headed off into the unknown world of cake decorating.

I guess that’s not entirely true.  Gigi and I have made several cakes and cupcakes together.  This is the first one I did all by myself.


Griffin loved it!


Then it was time to open presents!


He was so excited when he opened this one!  He know exactly what it was.


A twilight turtle!  It projects actual constellations onto his walls and ceiling.  It has 3 different color options and he’s been wanting one ever since his cousin, Tate got something similar for his birthday.




Griffin is my artistic child.  His favorite thing to do is write letters, draw pictures, color, paint and create things.  Gigi and Pap got him several art supplies and the kid could not have been happier!


Remember spirographs?  It’s been so fun playing with one of those again.

That was the end of birthday celebrations 1 and 2.  3 days later it was his actual birthday.  We went to Cold Stone again.  That kid can eat some dark chocolate ice cream!  We also had some presents from Ammon and I.  We gave him a real sword (for display purposes), a stack of really cool books that he LOVES, a new board game and a coupon good for $20 to spend at the Renaissance Festival.  After presents and his favorite dinner, cheese pizza lunchable, we went to karate and then to Ammon’s soccer game.


I know I’ve said it several times before, but watching Ammon play soccer is one of my favorite things to do.  He doesn’t love playing goalie, but he’s so good at it!  Here he is making one of many saves for his team.  GO AMMON!


It was unseasonably cool that evening and the boys really enjoyed playing between the fields.


They kicked a ball around.


Did cartwheels.


And handstands.


And then they wrestled for a LONG time.  They are so good with each other.  They wrestle well, but are not too rough.  Their goal is to play nicely, not to hurt one another.  I really lucked out having 2 boys that are best friends.



We had a wonderful day celebrating our beautiful baby boy.  It’s hard for me to describe Griffin in words.  His personality is so complex.  He is loving, kind, and thoughtful.  He is a great sharer and will give away anything of his if he thinks it will make someone else happy.  He is strong willed and when he channels that energy in a positive way, he is unbelievably good.  He loves with his whole body.  He very much enjoys physical touch and uses touch as a way to express his love.  He is an amazing little boy and although he exhausts me, I am grateful everyday for my Griffin.

Monday, August 12, 2013

I love to see the (orlando) temple

On our way home from our cruise, we decided to stop by the Orlando temple.  Neither of us had been before.  This temple was stunningly gorgeous!  The pictures come nowhere close to depicting the beauty of this building.  It was simple, but elegant at the same time.  We were not dressed to go inside, but were able to spend quite some time walking the grounds.  Next time we’re in Orlando we’ll be going in for sure!













Friday, August 9, 2013

Our 8th Anniversary

On the day of our anniversary, July 16th, we woke up on a cruise ship!  I was surprised that I didn’t get motion sick.  This was the first time I had taken Bonine and it worked well!  I could feel the motion, but it didn’t make me sick.  I’ve found that there’s not much sleeping on a cruise ship.  On the second night I was so exhausted and I felt a bit more nauseous but was able to overcome.

Anyway.  We disembarked the ship to spend the day on Grand Bahama Island.  Our plan for the morning was to go to a resort and listen to another timeshare presentation.  If we did this, we could gain full access to the resort and its amenities including a private stretch of beach.  We also got free breakfast and lunch, free drinks from the bar (virgin for us), tshirts and free transportation.  It seemed like a no brainer.


While we were at the resort, the skies opened up a few times and dumped a lot of rain.  We didn’t let that ruin our time there and headed out to the beach anyway. 


This place was gorgeous!  The water was so beautiful and the sand was incredibly soft.  Walking in the sand felt like some sort of expensive spa treatment.  We spent as much time on the beach before the storm (pictured above) rolled in.


The locals told us that normally there are no waves and that the ocean is a lot brighter than it was this day.  I’d love to go back sometime when the weather cooperates.

After lunch and drinks, we headed to our snorkel excursion which was at the marketplace.  When we got there, we were told that the weather was too bad and that no boats were going out… :(  That’s what we had feared all day.  Oh well.  We made the best of the situation and spent the rest of the day walking around all the vendors at the marketplace.  It was fun to haggle a bit and pick out a few souvenirs for people we love.  Mostly though, it was fun being with Ammon.  I definitely don’t think our trip was ruined by the weather.  We had a blast together.


Here’s a picture of our ship I took before we boarded again.


While we were waiting for everyone to get back to the ship so we could leave, we happened upon some sort of contest.  I don’t remember the end goal, but during part of it, a few men had to do 3 different muscle poses.  Ammon won that contest, hands down!


I’ve always wanted to have a towel folded into something awesome.  This little buddy was waiting for us when we got back from our day of fun.  :)


Ammon planned for us to go to one of the “fancy” restaurants on board for our special day.  Here we are all dressed up for dinner.


The place we went to was called, “The Rock”.  You order your meat and they bring it to you raw.  They also bring you an 800 degree stone to cook it on.  It was fun!


After dinner, they brought out a small cake for our anniversary.  It was so thoughtful!


After dinner we went back to the stage to watch more shows.  This guy did some pretty amazing things.


Then there was a scavenger hunt where people had to do all sorts of crazy things.  One time the women  had to put on lipstick.  Then they asked for a bald man to come on stage.

Enter Ammon.

Next, the women were told to kiss the bald head.  I love Ammon’s face in this picture.


Then, they asked the same of the men!  Lipstick and then the kiss.  Oh, it was funny.

I had such a wonderful time with that man I chose to marry 8 1/2 years ago.  He always plans fun and romantic ways to celebrate our love.  I’m grateful for the man he is and for the love he shows me every single day.

I wonder how we’ll top this next year!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

From Palm Beach to the Bahamas!

We drove from Lake Okeechobee to Palm Beach and attended a timeshare presentation before we boarded the ship.  Because we went to the presentation, we got free breakfast, a little time on the beach, a trip to the marina and then they presented us with our boarding passes.  We also got a free disney vacation.  I’ve never been to disney… anything so I’m excited to plan a trip there soon.


While at the marina we came across this sign.  56 miles to the Bahamas!


I had never been to Florida before and up to this point, this was the farthest south I had been.  Our timeshare rep took this picture of Ammon and I at Palm Beach.  The waves were almost non existent and the sand was full of shells.  It was so different than what we’re used to at Cherry Grove Beach in SC.  The water was also a lot lighter in color than what we’re used to.


We kindly told the timeshare people that we were not interested and once they presented several lower offers and realized we weren’t buying, they handed us our boarding passes and we headed for the ship.  We waited in lines and booked a snorkel excursion for the following day in the Bahamas.  Last month, Ammon had me get scuba certified so that I could go diving if I wanted to.  I decided against diving because it still makes me nervous and opted to snorkel instead.  I figured it would be a good way for me to get used to being in the ocean.  Once we booked our excursion and decided which restaurants we would dine at on the ship, it was time to come aboard.  I took my motion sickness medicine (hooray for bonine!!) and we boarded.   We found our room, unloaded our things and started exploring the ship.  A couple hours later we started our voyage to Grand Bahama Island.  This picture was taken as we were leaving the port.


The first night we ate at one of the 6 restaurants on board.  We enjoyed our 5 course meal and then headed outside before it got dark.


ps.  My husband is a model.  :)



After it got dark, we went back to the showroom for awhile.  This couple did some pretty cool acrobatics.  They also had a Cher impersonator on board and a few stand up comedians.  Before heading off to bed, we decided to go on deck and soak in the hot tub for awhile.  It’s too bad the water was barely warm… I got cold after about 3 minutes and we left.  We went to bed super late and the boat cruised around while we slept.  When we woke up, we were in the Bahamas!

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