Sunday, May 5, 2019

18th Anniversary

This year Todd and I decided to celebrate our anniversary by taking the kids to where it all began: Temple Square.

We were married in the Salt Lake Temple eighteen years ago. It was fun to see the newly wed couples who share our anniversary date with us getting their photos taken near the temple.

We talked to the kids about our memories of that day and the blessing of having an eternal family.

The kids loved the reflection pool in front of the temple. Later, as we were looking through the pages of the General Conference issue of the Ensign, Andrew was so excited to recognize the sights we had just visited in the magazine's photos.

The grounds were still full of tulips in bloom.

We then took the kids to the top of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building had had dinner at the Garden Restaurant. The food was great, but the view of the temple and the Salt Lake valley were the best part.

I am so grateful to be blessed with such wonderful children and a great husband. I couldn't ask for more!

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Salt Lake Bee's Baseball Game

 My work gave me four tickets to a Salt Lake Bees baseball game. The kids had never been so Todd took the oldest three to it. Our Spring this year has been ridiculously wet. The seats were actually not bad bu they were not covered by a roof so they moved up away from the field and closer to the top so they could be shielded from the rain.

There were a total of maybe 100 people at the stadium. Todd wasn't sure they were going to stay for the entire thing, but once the kids discovered that they could win freebies by getting closer to the bottom of the stadium, they were pretty entertained. They stayed until the 6th inning when they called the game due to the rain.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Carson Builder of the Month Award

Carson was recognized today by his teacher for his willingness to accept when he has made a mistake and make corrections. He was also recognized for his ability to help others who have made mistakes make corrections without feeling bad about themselves.

Carson is a great, dedicated student. I love getting messages such as the one I recently received from his Math teacher:

I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate Carson in my math class. He is not only a hard worker, but he helps me out so much in class. He is a great example. At the end of class each day he helps me pack up all of my supplies and makes sure that everyone has put their materials away properly. He saves me so much time and I am extremely lucky to have him in my class. Thank you for raising such an amazing young man!

Mrs. Williams

Way to go Carson!

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Easter traditions

Easter Egg dying is an annual tradition for the Humphries. We gathered at grandma and grandpa's house a few days before the holiday to decorate the We came home with three dozen beautifully colored eggs.

On Easter morning the kids woke up to find Easter baskets filled with some treats and candy. They each go new pajamas, and new swimsuits. They also received some candy and a toy. Carson was particularly fond of his plasma ball. He has placed it next to the Eco Dot in his room so that the sounds will trigger the electricity in the ball to light up the lamp.

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Mid-Winter Break Grand Canyon Vacation

It has been a long time since Todd and I have been to the Grand Canyon. We traveled there to celebrate our first anniversary.I remember the weather being really cold and gray the entire trip.

We lucked out on this trip. Although the weather was cold, it was still sunny and clear, which allowed us to enjoy the distant views of the canyon.

We actually stayed in Williams, AZ a small tourist town on old Route 66 about one hour away from the national park. We drove Grandma and Grandpa Humphries trailer to the RV resort we were staying. Our friends Sally Davis and Jenn Quinton and their daughters joined us.

The resort had an indoor pool where the kids swam the first afternoon after we arrived.

The main reason we chose to stay in Williams is because of the train that takes visitors into the Grand Canyon.

The show began with a cowboy shootout that traumatized the kids. The kids believed the guns the cowboys carried were real and did not want to get near them the entire trip.

The train ride was leisurely slow and the warm sun filtering through the windows accompanied by the rhythmic jostling of the tracks made us all drowsy.

Once we reached the park we spotted mule deer  grazing on the side of the road. We saw many more the next day while driving through the park. They are called mule deer because their ears move independently from each other, like mule ears'.

We spent the day walking around the rim viewing the Grand Canyon from various viewpoints.

There have been several accidental falls and death at the Grand Canyon over past few weeks. The kids kept looking at the canyon trying to pinpoint the spot where the people had fallen and died. It was morbidly fun.

I was on high alert with the kids, especially the younger two to make sure they were cautious about where they stepped.

Andrew was a trooper and walked along side most of the time and did not have any accidents during the trip.

The kids worked really hard for two days completing the requisites from the Junior Ranger books.

And were rewarded by earning their Jr. Ranger badge from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Front Yard Makeover

In March we tackled a rather big home project. We decided to give our front yard a makeover. When we bought the house, the yard had been so neglected that we just took a tiller to the flower beds to tackle all of the weeds that were there.

We kept the larger bushes, but they were overgrown and had 'bald spots' of growth because of some of what we took out. So, six years later we decided to star all over. We removed every plant except the roses and most trees.

I hired a landscaping company to do the majority of the work. They cut the sod, clear the plants, adjusted sprinkler zones, laid out drip irrigation, placed weed barrier and added the rocks. All I had to do was pick which plants we were going to add, buy them and plan them.

It doesn't seem that the planting would be a lot of work, but it was! I hired a landscape architect to advise me on what plants to add in my landscape and he went overboard with the number of plants he would add. In reviewing his recommendations, not only I cut back the total plants to 1/3 of what he had suggested but I also had to reconsider his recommendations on placement. It took hours of work on my park to re-design the landscape and to search for plant suppliers that had what I needed this early in the season at a price I was willing to pay.

I had to drive to 5 different nurseries located all across the valley to buy 100+ plants. The white weeping spruce was the hardest to find.

We decided to increase the size of rocks we placed so that they would be easily blown with a leaf blower without moving them out of place. The larger size rock meant we had to buy significantly more of it to cover the weed barrier. It took twice as much rock than what we had budgeted for, but I am so pleased with our decision.

The people who did our curbing were not the most personable, but they were quick, efficient and affordable so I can't complain about their work.

We debated a lot whether to spend the money to install landscape lighting. It would raise the cost of our budget by 20% between labor and materials. Honestly, I am glad we did it. My yard looks better after making these changes, but it looks amazing at night with the lights illuminating the house, paths and trees. I would highly recommend installing low voltage lights to any landscape.

The best part is how much time I am saving taking care of the yard. I no longer have to edge the park-strip and along the driveway and RV site. It has cut the time in half!

Friday, February 8, 2019

Stella School Play

First graders performed several short plays for their parents this morning. Stella was in the play Anansi. She was the python Usebo.

The kids were adorable and they all knew their lines so well!

I hate snakes so I had to do my best to look through images to come up with one for her mask. Stella was very particular that it had to be a python mask, not just a regular snake.