Monday, July 26, 2010

Granny's 90th Birthday

Grandma has always wanted to go on a Safari, but to bring a safari to her would involve hauling in many exotic animals. Way too messy and I think we would need a special permit :) So she had to settle for traveling the Pacific Islands for her 90th Birthday.

We celebrated her birthday witha real Luau with dancers, pina coladas, and pork dinner.

Some of the kids doing the Hukilau. Me, my aunt, and cousin attempting the poi ball dance.

Grandma had a great time, as did the rest of us. She was completely shocked to see that my family and I made it for her celebration. I just love my Granny and think she is completely amazing. She is still living on her own, with a dog big enough to eat her, and still thinks of everyone else before herself. We love how she calls everyone 80 and younger "kid". She is another member in my family who is a living legacy. What a fun party. Happy Birthday Grandma! Here's to a 100!

Doesn't she look great. I don't think she has changed at all in nearly 30 years. She looks the same as she did when I was a kid.

Here are some random shots of the family at her party.

A rare picture of the whole White family together.

A big THANK YOU to my cousins Jeremy and Tiffany for hosting the big event and making Grandma's birthday so special. I know how much time and work it takes to plan and make something like this happen. Well done.

The Great American Road Trip IV

Every year Jed's family reunion is held at a campground up Logan canyon. It is a tradition that has been going on for over 50 years! I see why, it is a LOT of fun. We used to come and camp for the weekend and hike up to the wind caves--yeah, that was before kids. This year we spent the Friday at Jed's Aunt's house in Tremonton and drove to the canyon Saturday morning. We had fun just hanging out with the fam.
Zander enjoyed getting dirty and finding the biggest sticks.

My cloned nephews. They all looked the same, just different stages in life.
They are observing a catepillar that they found.
After the annual auction, we hurried home so we could clean-up and be at my Granny's 90th birthday party later that night in Draper. More driving in addition to the drive here!
More to come!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Great American Road Trip III

So after 25+ hours of driving we arrived in Utah and wondered if maybe we could just ship the car home. We had a VERY busy schedule visiting all the family and attending some wonderful events.
My Cousin's Wedding

Brain has always been like a little brother to me. He's 5 years younger, almost to the day, and we would celebrate our birthdays together; he was in Kindergarten when I was in 5th grade and we would write to each other through the school Valentine postal service (I think I even still have a note from him); and I survived tending him and his crazy friends after school. I even got in trouble for telling him that a witch lived out in my Grandpa's backyard, and taught him naughty things such as the phrase "Oh, Fart!" and how to wrap a rubber band around the sink sprayer to get someone on April Fools Day. Ah, memories!

Anyway, Brian married Courtnie Cable June 17th at Heritage Gardens in Sandy. What a beautiful wedding ceremony. Brian's Uncle Danny (on his Mom's side) married them and spoke such wonderful words of love. I would love a copy of the ceremony because it touched me, and others, so deeply. It was all about hands and giving of one another.... anyway so beautiful. Their colors were purple and artichoke green. All the boys were there in tuxes (Brian has 4 younger brothers) including cute Braxton who has been undergoing chemo for a brain tumor and is completely bald (We love you Brax! Fight! Fight! Fight!) and of course the ever beautiful Brittney looked fabulous in green. Courtnie is an adorable, skinny, little thing. She looked gorgeous in her off-white gown and silk flower in her hair. She has a wonderful sense of humor--which one absolutely needs to be in the family. We always have so much fun together. I can't wait to get to know her even better. Courtnie is having a rather hard time moving to Cleveland with Brian and I totally relate. When we moved to Washington D.C. I cried from North Salt Lake to Kansas City, MO. So I really am feeling for her. On the other note, I did learn that they are officially the furthest relative and it makes me feel not so much the black sheep of the family:) Congratulations to the both of them. We wish them all the best and love them very much.

We had a great time catching up on the family news including meeting my cousins baby, Claire, for the first time. Here are some of the shots of my adorable Nieces and Nephews.
Zander, Carson, Savanna, Brooklyn, Elle, and Mason--being the goof-balls that they are. Love it anyway I can get it.
We fell in love with Mason on this trip. Last year he was hardly talking at all, and this year talks your ear off. He has the sweetest little voice and a smile that gets your goat. I love how he calls Zander "Z". Cute kid.
And these are the sweet girly girls. Savanna has definitely grown-up. Although not her hair :) Brooklyn and Elle are quite the pair. They love to read, get their nails done, and have sleepovers.

My brother's family

This is probably THE best picture of my brother--ever! I'm going to frame it and keep it forever.
I just love weddings!
Stay tuned for more fabulous re-caps of our vacation...

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Great American Road Trip II

A day and a half later and we finally made it out of Texas, Yipee! and into New Mexico. We stayed over night in Farmington, NM at a hotel that had a nice pool. The kids thought they were in heaven. We took a much needed rest and spent the morning swimming.

I started teaching Elle swimming lessons this year and she has really caught on. She was so afraid to even let go of the wall or jump to me and now is so brave--and a little too confident :)
On the way out of Farming, I talked Jed into stopping at the Aztec ruins National Monument. The name "Aztec" is a misnomer. Actually no Aztec people lived here; it was Publeo Indians. The site was being excavated while we were there so they weren't charging to see the ruins. BONUS! The kids had fallen asleep, but I dragged them out of the car anyway. No time to sleep when there is cultural waiting to be experienced!

This is a great site--especially for kids. It only took us about 45 min. to tour and no strenous hiking. We got to see ancient masonry work and archeticture and the"great kiva". What a great little taste of history; and we got to see real archaeologists at work.

Then it was through the corner of Colorado (mountains finally!) and into Utah. Here's a funny thing. We had been on lots of roads during our trip and not one of them was under construction. The minute we pass the "Welcome to Utah" sign, we hit construction and it lasts off and on all the way--including good old I-15.
Isn't this landscape beautiful. The blue sky, the green grass, and 68 degrees. I just love the red rock that Southern Utah is so famous for.

And still to be continued...

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Great American Road Trip

Here is the beginning of our 23 day trip to Utah.
We kept going back and forth on if we should go or not. We had my cousins wedding to go to, my Granny's 90th birthday to attend, Jed's family reunion, Father's Day, and and and ...not to mention the fact that we hadn't been there since last summer. But there were family issues and cost and a bunch of things so we decided we just weren't going. Well, I'm not sure who talked who into it, but we decided we needed to be there. But by this time, airfare was too expensive and our only option was to drive it. It takes at least 4 days out of your week vacation to do it, so to make it worth while, Jed needed to fly home to work and come back to drive us home. I had a flight credit with Southwest that we could use---if there is availablity. We kept checking and checking for the days we needed and no such luck. Okay, well that settles it--we weren't going. Friday night June 11 we went to bed. Nothing packed. We weren't going.
Saturday morning Jed is out mowing the lawn and I come out to say Good Morning. "Did you check the flight today?"
"No, we aren't going."
"Well, just go check it anyway."
I go check the flight and low and behold it IS available. I go running outside.
"Guess what? It's available. Now what do you want to do?"
"Book it. And then we'll discuss it."
So I go ahead and book it. After Jed finishes mowing the lawn, he comes in and we try to figure out what we are going to do. We can't get a flight back into Salt Lake City when we needed, so we decided that we would book a return flight to Denver and I would drive that much by myself to pick Jed up there. I'm hoping that the flights will open up as we get closer to that day, but this is a back-up plan just in case. With that done, I begin packing myself and the kids (Jed is on his own) for our journey west. We left Downtown Houston (After stopping in at Jed's work in order to get things arranged for being out of town) at 4:30 p.m. Who says that once you have kids you can't be spontaneous!

To be continued.....