Saturday, July 25, 2009
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Thursday, July 9, 2009
We had a fabulous weekend for Caleb's celebration! I am pretty sure that he had a good time. After our rodeo fun we headed down to Scofield for the traditional fireworks off the island and playing in the lake. Caleb says his highlight of the weekend was being able to climb on the climbing wall in the park at Scofield. I think he enjoyed that most because he felt so brave at going so high up, he really accomplished something and felt so good about himself.
On the day of Caleb's birthday we had a lot going on. We went to the Oquirrh Mountain Temple open house in the morning. Caleb said he wanted to do that for his birthday and who could deny him that? It was very neat to go together and Caleb was really excited to go. After we left the temple Caleb commented on how good he felt inside, he is such a good boy. In the afternoon Caleb had several of his friends over for a swimming party. I think the kids had the most fun when we pulled out the inflatable swords and they started playing Star Wars. After the party Granny and Grandpa Gray came over for German Pancakes and they gave him his presents and then after it was dark we did a special fireworks show just for Caleb to end his birthday the right way. It was Caleb's Golden Birthday (which means his birthday is the 6th and he turned 6 this year) so I wanted to make it super special for him. So, with only a few hours left I asked him if he wanted to do anything else before his birthday was done and he could not come with anything. Good sign. The only thing he wanted to do that I said no to was playing with his model magic present. That stuff takes more time than we had. :)
Caleb has grown so much this past year. Besides playing baseball, soccer, learning how to pump himself on the swing, holding still for a haircut (much to Rob's delight) and starting Kindergarten; he learned how to read, spell, write really well and become a better big brother. There is so much Caleb has done this past year and we are so proud of him. We love you, Caleb!
Saturday, July 4, 2009
No trip to Pittsburgh would be complete without a stop into IKEA. And we both really wanted to try the breakfast they had (we're already big fans of the other food). So we checked out of the good ol' Red Roof Inn, and drove around the corner to the Blue and Yellow store of happiness. Here's a picture of Mindy sitting down to breakfast (if you must know, I'm the one carrying the camera most of the time, so Mindy has to put up with me always taking pictures of her. Thanks babe for putting up with me!):
We picked up a couple of dressers for our spare bedroom. We also picked up a few other odds and ends (how can you not when visiting IKEA?). We loaded up the car and then went back in for lunch! We really love one of the desserts they have. Here's a pic of our car loaded up and ready to go (you can't really tell from the photo, but Mindy put her luggage under the top box to make sure it didn't "tibble." I've never heard of the word, but I'm sure she was thinking of three words like topple, tip, and wobble and just combined them into one concise word, "tibble," which I'm thinking of submitting to Merriam-Webster):
Friday, July 3, 2009
After our tour of Fallingwater, we headed back to Pittsburgh to get some dinner and see some of the city. We drove around about and had to ask ourselves if we were really in Pittsburgh or was it San Fransisco; this city is SO hilly! We settled on going to the Hard Rock Cafe and it was delicious!
After dinner, we wanted to go up the funicular (or inclines as they say here) to the top of Mt. Washington to have a more scenic view of the city. Here's a picture at the top of the incline (the Monongahela incline, built in 1870) we rode up:
Here's a photo of the second incline (while riding) so you have an idea of what we're talking about:
Here's another view of downtown Pittsburgh from farther down Mt. Washington, before we rode back down on the Duquesne incline (built in 1877):
Here's a view at the bottom of the Duquesne Incline, back up Mt. Washington:
We had a great evening in downtown, but thought it was funny that there are tons of random pieces of steel items all over the place. They're all obviously from some by-gone era and most seemed like there were random parts from large ships or other structures. But there were no plaques and no real rhyme or reason to their placement. Huh. Maybe they thought it a more artsy way to dispose of scrap? I can only assume it was suppose to subtley remind you that you were in Pittsburgh and the steel industry built this town.
It was a fun day. Tomorrow we'll stop in at IKEA and then who knows... For now, nighty-night.
We had the great oppurtunity to drive down to see Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater. It's about an hour and a half Southeast of Pittsburgh in the middle of the hills. Along the drive, Mindy kept commenting on how she felt like she was in Eastern Austria because of how beautiful the hills and trees were. We first checked out a little photo gallery and the gift shop before starting our tour of the house. It was absolutely amazing! If you take the regular $18 tour (like we did), you are not allowed to take photos of the inside of Fallingwater (but the in-depth $55 tour allows it). But there are a plethera of books out there containing pics of the inside. Needless to say we were amazed and are very glad we made the trip.
But for now, I just thought I'd put a quick post up. Here's a photo of our car... in front of our high quality, two star hotel room (but the price was right, eh?). The other good thing this hotel is the location. 0.7 miles from IKEA, shares a parking lot with Denny's, up the street from a movie theater (where we'll probably see a movie, any suggestions?), and tons of other food.
I just got back from my morning run around the place exploring the commercial area... which was the entire area really. But I now where I want to eat now, which is great. And the run had a couple of great quarter to half mile long hills. Okay, y'all might not care about that detail. Anywho. Here's a pic over looking the mall that I ran around during the run. IKEA is just to the left out of the picture. But now we're off. We're heading to Fallingwater! Are you jealous? You should be! More pics to come.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
I must say, I love the great tradition of rodeos! I just love them! I love putting on my boots and walking around in them, I love stomping on the bleachers and making a lot of sound with my boots. I love going to the rodeo and making a whole bunch of sound and cheering so loud that all the kids look at me like I am a nut. I love watching a horse run really, really fast. I love watching those cute little kids ride those sheep. I love watching the bull riding and getting so excited by the whole event. And I really love that my oldest child was born at this time of year so that gives us a great excuse to go to the rodeo and do all these fun, loud things together. I also love watching my kids groove to the rodeo music, cheer for the cowboys and get excited to watch it all over again.
So, that is what we did tonight. To kick off Caleb's birthday celebration we always go to the rodeo, it is so fun! Dacia brought along her boys (minus Jason) and Pa came with us too. I had a blast and so did Caleb and Peter. I cannot speak for Dacia and her boys (Spencer was a wee bit on the wiggly side), but the rodeo was a definite hit for us. The weather was great for the rodeo, my kids were so well behaved for the whole thing; I even managed to get Will to take a short nap during the barrel racing. Seriously he slept through all of my stomping and grooving. Oh, and I forgot one other thing I love, seeing my three awesome kids wearing their cowboy hats! Oh, they are such good looking boys! We had fun, I had fun; oh how I love a good rodeo!
Now we are going to head for Scofield tomorrow to watch "Caleb's" fireworks from off the island, play in the lake, row the boat and eat rice krispy treats, watermelon and hamburgers. I am feeling good right now because life is happy.
Have a fabulous 4th of July! -Diedre