Tuesday, September 29, 2009


tomorrow is alanna's 13th birthday! yikes... i'm almost the proud owner of a teenage daughter!

since we will be flying out to california early tomorrow morning, we had our family get-together for her on sunday at danny's mom and dads house. we gave her all of her gifts early, and she loved them all. we ate some yummy veggie tacos, and way too much cake and cookies. it was a nice time.

my husband is a babe <3

she hated having to wear that crown, haha

blowing out her "13" birthday candles

since her birthday is close to halloween, and we love that holiday, vicky made her this cute cake. i guess the witch got stuck in all that yummy goodness, haha. last year she made her an awesome jack skellington cake. yummy.

vicky and dan decorated these cute cookies too

malcolm loved wearing the crown. alanna put it on him just for fun, and he didn't want to take it off. he won't wear a hat. ever. but he'll wear this pretty sparkly crown?! what a silly little guy, haha

i won't be posting on here until next week when we get back from our trip. so be ready for way too many photos. and wish me luck on the loooong flights with my toddler... ugh. i'm not excited about that at all. but i am sooo stoked for disneyland, and being able to spend time with my mom, kate, jeanie and demetri! sweet <3

Sunday, September 27, 2009

our trip to the mountains

we got back from our trip to sapphire valley on wednesday, but i haven't had time to post about it on here until today. it was beautiful out there. so green and thick with trees. the weather was perfect, nice and cool... and then it started to rain. and rain. and rain. did you hear about the flooding in atlanta? that same storm system moved north, and rained right over us. we were in transylvania county, and that area got over 20 inches of rain in less than a week, 11.5 of it on 2 of the days we were there! it was pretty crazy. that was the most rain i've ever seen falling continuously, and it poured. we ended up staying in the condo more then we had planned, but it was very nice spending time with my parents, and my aunt and uncle. plus i got to read a few magazines i like, and watch some cable (hgtv which i love). malcolm really liked watching the imagination movers on disney. and the resort had a rec center with an indoor pool and arcade, so we went there twice to swim and play.

on saturday, the rain hadn't quite made it up to us yet, but it sure was cloudy and foggy out. we drove about an hour and a half to chimney rock state park. it is located in the heart of nc apple country, so we passed tons of apple orchards and fruit stands along the highway. this is apple season right now, so the trees were covered in red ripe fruit. we stopped and bought some fresh apple cider. yum!

on top of chimney rock

dad, aunt earlene, mom and uncle arlund

yes, that is one of those damn monkey leashes from target. and yes, i have become that mom. (no, not the one who drags her child across the floor in a public shopping center). it really did come in handy up there on the huge rock, and along the walking trail. i think it's a great product, when used properly (and responsibly). don't judge me. <3

our condo

my mom surprised me with an amazing quilt she had handmade for malcolm and i. it was made with all eric carle fabrics, to match his bedroom. she pieced it all by hand, and even quilted it herself. she told me how difficult it was for her to find enough of each different fabric color to complete it, since it has been discontinued and is hard to find in local fabric shops. she ended up getting some of the extra fabric from the eric carle museum's website. it is beautiful, and we love it. malcolm kept making me lay it out on the floor so that he could dance and roll around on it. thanks mom.

our bathroom had the biggest jacuzzi tub i have ever seen. the kids had a blast in it!

on sunday we spent a very rainy day at the biltmore estate. it was a shame that it was so wet and gross out. we had already made a reservation online for sunday, so we couldn't change the date. but we all had a nice time regardless. we went in 2007, and the weather was great. bummer. it's much better to see it on a nice sunny day, to really appreciate the beauty and amazement of it all. there is no photography allowed inside, so here are a few photos from the outside.

i liked this creepy lil' devil detail

there is a great little toy store in the shops building, and i got this little mechanical singing bird. it's really cute.

malcolm tubbin'

this little shack was on the winding mountain road on the way to our condo. of course we had to buy some boiled peanuts.

on tuesday, it finally stopped raining, so we drove along the blue ridge parkway. it was still very overcast and foggy, so the views weren't as spectacular as they should have been. but it was still very pretty.

we hiked down this trail for a bit until we got to a river.

going through one of the many tunnels along the parkway.

then we drove through asheville before heading back to the condo.

on wednesday we stopped at a few shops with the family before heading back home. malcolm found a perfect bench that was just his size.

of course, the blue skies came back out on the day that we were leaving. i stopped at this waterfall along the highway on our way down the mountain. all the rain made it really loud and beautiful.

the kids and i stopped at this awesome toy store in brevard. the sign says "the coolest toy store on the planet". that pretty much sums it up. their selection was amazing! and it just kept going and going inside. like room after room of toys. all grouped by age and theme. pretty freakin' great! we spent over an hour and a half in there. it was a bit overwhelming. i already want to go back.

they had an extensive selection of
plan toys which i really love, and i got malcolm this one:

and last, but not least, we stopped in asheville again before hitting the interstate, and got dinner and dessert at rosetta's kitchen. yum! it was a great trip. we all had a lot of fun. makes me miss my mom and dad. but we will see mom in just 3 more days! yes!!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Friday, September 18, 2009

coming & going

my friend kate booked her flight for california! i'm glad that she will be joining us again at disneyland this year. she will be with us for 2 days, and it should be lots of fun. i missed seeing her the last time i was in salt lake, so i'll get to make up for it on this trip. i wish that her fiance jason could also come, alanna had such a blast with him last year. here is kate and malcolm on our trip last year. malcolm was only 8 months old. i love this photo.

later today, the kids and i will be heading to the "mountains" in the southwest end of nc. we will be spending time with my parents, and my aunt and uncle, who are all visiting from utah. we are excited for this trip (minus all the driving involved). but a little sad that danny wont be with us. we will be gone for 6 days. autumn in north carolina is just gorgeous. i'm not sure if the leaves have started to change enough yet, for it to look like this photo, but i'm sure it will be beautiful out there no matter what. i <3

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

photos from the weekend

thursday night we met some friends from out of town for dinner in cameron village. afterwards we walked around and looked at the closed shops windows. malcolm liked the creepy baby heads on this local storefront door

on friday we went to target to get some diapers, and to check out their new halloween stuff. we also browsed through the shoes, and malcolm insisted on trying these (ladies) boots on, haha! he already tried them on a couple of weeks ago. alanna wants a pair, and apparently he wants them too, haha

on saturday evening we went downtown to "bugfest" at the nc museum of natural sciences. alanna loved holding the bugs. here she is with a giant praying mantis

on sunday since the weather was so nice out, we decided to visit a new park that we'd never been to. it was really nice (except for the crazy mom who was there with her kids, and was acting like a 4 year old. sooo annoying). there were two large playgrounds, and some nice paved walking trails along a lake and through the woods. this is the only photo from all weekend with me in it, haha

we spotted this dear literally like 5 feet from us, right off of the trail. there were two of them, and they ran when they realized how close we were. malcolm tried to take off after them, it was cute. he was sooo excited to see them, and kept pointing back into the woods looking for them. it was pretty rad

my big boy making his way up the playground on his own

this was the view of the lake from a watch tower we climbed up

and some playtime on the second playground