Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Prom Dress Pursuit - Part 2

Good news! I put together the bodice today and tried it on Whitney and she LOVES it! I'm so excited. She also likes the sparkly lace on the bodice so we're keeping it. I just have a make a small (yes, Whitney, I said small) adjustment to the bust so it won't gap, but otherwise, it's coming along! Whoo hoo!

Prom Dress Pursuit - Part 1

I'm going to document my journey over the next week and a half because I am making Whitney's prom dress -- something I've never done before. I have sewn since I was a little girl and have made many, many things, but never anything as important as a prom dress. Whitney wanted something different from everyone else (she's had a couple of years with the same dress as someone else -- tragic!). I'm a little nervous (don't tell Whitney) because I want it to be perfect for her! She picked out the pattern (see below) and color (golden yellow). If all goes as planned, it will be beautiful!
We're doing the white version with a sparkly lace over the bust (maybe -- if it looks good). Wish me luck!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

April showers

We have two of the most beautiful trees in our front yard when they blossom, but when it's time for the blossoms to drop, we have our own April showers! (Okay, we did shake the tree for these pictures!)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Farewell to the Bird

With Kendall leaving for college tomorrow, she will no longer be Red the Robin at Red Robin on Thursday nights. Here she was last week in her "farewell performance". (You may never see legs that great on Red again.)

Monday, April 13, 2009

Seattle Sounders vs. Kansas City Wizards

Aaron loves, loves, loves soccer and was so excited when a professional soccer club opened in Seattle this year -- the Seattle Sounders. (They were a lower league team that was "promoted" to professional MLS status this year.) He has been following the team and knows all the players, their positions, stats, etc. They have been undefeated so far and are the team to watch this year. Aaron wanted nothing more than to go to a game in Seattle before he left for college, but nothing was working in his favor (ticket availability, cost, Aaron's availability, someone to go with, etc.). We slightly appeased him by buying him a team jersey that he absolutely LOVED!

Rick decided to surprise him by taking him to a game last Saturday and was able to secure some mid-field tickets at only 200% of the original cost! Talk about a bargain! Aaron and Rick drove to Seattle, walked along the streets with the other fans and band into the stadium, and bought all the paraphernalia they could get their hands on (license plate frame, large flag, small car flag, soccer ball, and scarf -- they were out of the hats). Unfortunately, the Sounders experienced their first loss because the goalie was red carded. Aaron was sad, but was more happy that he got to go to the game! They had a great time! Go Sounders!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Spring Break

We had a great Spring Break in Southern Utah and had been planning it for several months. Each one of the kids took part in planning some part of the week. The first day (Saturday) was consumed with Rick and I riding the Tour de St. George Century while the kids walked to the local fun center and played miniature golf, raced the go-carts, and went to a movie. Later that evening, we all went out to a nice Italian restaurant to celebrate Kendall's 20th birthday. Here's what we did the rest of the week:
Sunday - Zion National Park

Aaron chose this hike -- called the "Hidden Canyon" hike. It was a only a mile each way, but it was about 1,000 ft. ascent in that mile. We had to park about 1.5 miles away from the trailhead, so we had to hike to the trailhead. After we reached the top, there was another mile of the "hidden canyon" that we hiked through, scrambling over and under rocks, and exploring all we could see, until we reached the end of the canyon. As we were hiking along the road back to the RV, we passed a little herd of deer about 15 feet away from us, eating grass, and they didn't run away. We hiked about 6 miles on this hike. This was a four star hike!

Monday - Goblin Valley State Park

The morning here was spent playing "Sardines" and "Hide and Seek" in the hoo doos. After lunch, we took a little hike, following no path, just to see where it would take us. We had fun discovering a little cave with a secret opening that only Tara and Chase could fit through. We also came to the very edge of the park where the cliffs and hoo doos just ended. We felt like we had reached the end of the world. We hiked about fives miles in Goblin. This was a three star hike.
Tuesday - Little Wild Horse Canyon

This is an amazing slot canyon! It serpentines back and forth and up and down. We had a great time scrambling up and over choke stones, dry water falls, and through very narrow parts of the canyon! We took the loop through Bell Canyon, which is a much wider canyon and not as impressive, although it opened up with some beautiful vistas. We hiked a little over 8 miles in Little Wild Horse loop. The first part was a four star hike and the second part was a three star hike. So overall it was a three and a half star hike.

Wednesday - Arches National Park

Double Arch

The weather turned pretty cold and windy on this day so we didn't hike to Delicate Arch because the trail is so exposed. (Unfortunately, this was Whitney's hike that we didn't get to do.) So instead of hiking to Delicate Arch, we went to the Windows area and hiked arounnd. After that, we went to the Fiery Furnace and hiked around. We found a new way in that was much more beautiful and adventurous. Inside the Fiery Furnace, it SNOWED!!! We never felt really cold, though, because we were running around so much. We got lost at one point and luckily found a ranger-led tour and followed them to where the trail was again familiar. Because we got lost, we found a new arch that we had never seen before. We hiked about 7-8 miles here. This was a four star hike!

Fiery Furnace

Skull Arch

Surprise Arch

Thursday - Canyonlands National Park

This was our best weather day, except for Saturday when we rode the century ride. We planned our best and longest hike for this day. The campgroud was full, but we had some incredible luck and found one campsite open. Naturally, we scooped it up immediately. Our hike started from the campground in the Needles District and it went five miles to the edge of Chesler Park. We hiked an additional two miles to the Joint Trail, then hiked around for about a mile on the Joint Trail. The Joint Trail as totally cool -- it was a a crack in the rock that, at some points, was just barely wide enough to squeeze through. There was one section that Rick and I couldn't fit through, but all the kids made it through. We hiked a total of 15 miles here. This was a four star hike!

Chesler Park

Aerial view of Chesler Park

Joint Trail

Friday we left Canyonlands, drove north, and visited my dad in Spanish Fork then drove to Logan to be with Rick's mom. We watched conference with Rick's mom on Saturday then drove home on Sunday. We had a great time and made some great memories!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Tour de St. George

Well, our first century ride of the year is complete. It was probably the hardest thing I've ever made my body do -- EVER! Rick and I knew there would be a lot of hills, but we figured we could make our bodies do anything for one day, right? We prepared moderately well for this ride and were blessed with excellent weather -- about 75 degrees, clear, sunny skies, and no wind. It was least until we got our bikes out the morning of the ride to get started and noticed that one of Rick's spokes was broken on his rear wheel.
We sadly went to the start of the ride and watched 400 riders take off without us. We took the wheel to a bike shop and they had it fixed within about 30 minutes. So Rick and I got ready and left about 45 minutes behind the pack. We rode along, feeling great, until we missed a turn (because we both misread the street sign -- go figure) and pedaled an extra 15 minutes or so until we realized our mistake. We got back on track and then missed a second turn (not our fault this time because the road was not marked) and pedaled another extra 20 or so minutes. By this time we're more than an hour behind the pack with no hope of catching up.
When we reached our first hill, we pedaled up without a problem and felt great. Going up our second hill was when everyone going back passed us on the other side of the road. We continued to ride, feeling great and finished the first 50 miles (which was 60 miles for us because of our two detours) with plenty of energy to continue. (By the way, we actually passed four people before the halfway point.) We took a 45 lunch break and then started the second 50 miles.
As we started, I was happy to see that only the first 17 miles were uphill and figured it would be easy riding going downhill for 33 miles. What we didn't realize was that the uphill on the second half was twice the climb as the first half. When I was about 2 miles from the top, I started to cry and then couldn't breathe. Rick and I stopped for about 10 minutes so I could catch my breath again. (We had been passed by several of the SAG wagons informing us that the rest stops and the support vehicles were ending soon -- yes, we were WAY behind schedule.) We told them not to wait for us and that we would be fine (or so I hoped).
After reaching the top, we hit a flat area then a VERY steep downhill that required constant brakes. That was for about 1/2 mile, and then there was no more downhill! So, my 33 miles of anticipated coasting turned out to be 33 miles of constant pedaling. My legs ached, my neck was stiff, and my right knee started to give out. I barely made it back, but I did! We rode 107 miles total in about 8 hours (averaging 13.1 mph). That was way behind what we hoped, but we knew that we weren't in great shape and we were both packing an extra 20 pounds or so that didn't help. We're hoping to tackle another couple of centuries this year, and hopefully we'll be in better shape for them. Maybe even the STP (Seattle to Portland - 200 miles) -- hmmmm, we'll see about that one.