Thursday, November 12, 2015


October is a special month for us now - it was this month last year that our adoption with Carter was finalized and he was sealed to us in the temple! I have always loved October, in Utah - it's so fun to watch the colors and the weather change into the refreshing, crisp, Fall air. We live in a seriously breath-taking place and it's sad to think this may be our last Fall in Alpine. :(
Let's relive that special day for a second:

Of course we had to do Cornbelly's! We went with Carter's cousin, Lizzie and Aunt Hannah. It was fun to watch them run around by themselves and explore. When we went last year, Carter wasn't even crawling so it was a whole new experience. The tractor ride was definitely their favorite part - we had to ride it twice in a row!

Brad also ran another half marathon - this time it was a trail. It was up in Midway and it was absolutely beautiful, but he said the difference in trail vs. road races kinda rocked him, but he's glad he did it. :)

We also celebrated my dad's birthday that weekend. The last time he went to California, he inherited some of his dad's sweaters. He let us each pick one to keep - we LOVE them!

Shaun was MIA this day
Our ward had a trunk or treat party and the theme was to dress up as your favorite Book of Mormon character. Hannah and I had spent the day working on our Halloween costumes and I had some extra fabric to work with so I just kind of whipped something up for him. It turned out so cute and he was a hit. It took bribing him with a sword and piece of candy to get him to keep it on.

Then, of course, Halloween! This holiday just gets better every year. I LOVE Halloween and seeing everyone's creative costumes. I was struggling with deciding what I wanted us to be and I came across the best idea, but the Ryan's had to be game. I suggested it to Hannah and they were in! How could we resist? It could be the only year we get to do something like this!

Say hello to Barney, Betty, and Bam Bam Rubble & Fred, Wilma, and Pebbles Flintstone!

We had so much fun celebrating with Rob, Hannah, & Lizzie (Zac & Karlie came over for dinner before they headed to another party - no pic tho...) We had a yummy chili dinner with bread sticks. Then we took the little ones trick or treating around the block. They surprisingly got the hang of it and were loving getting all of the candy. Carter hated letting go of it and putting it in his trick or treating bag. We came back, ate "worms in dirt" then made some caramel apples while the kiddos watch Room on the Broom - a total hit in our house!
Halloween just gets more and more fun and exciting as families grow - I can only imagine how much better it will be next year!

Here are some classic Carter moments and other October highlights for your entertainment:

it wasn't me

my little helper - dusting the floors??
and the furniture :)
vacuuming alongside mom
they are seriously best buds
dinner up the canyon with good friends for the last time of the season 
his favorite place to sit while we read books
finally hiked the Y with my beautiful cousins

he's got serious moves and serious bedhead
daddy's little helper
lickin it clean

Monday, October 19, 2015


September was a month spent getting back into the groove of things. I started back up with preschool. As much as we loved every minute of the summer - it has been nice to get back into more of a schedule/routine. My little preschool class is darling. The fun part is I went to high school with most of the parents of the kiddos. It's fun to be able to teach my friends' kids.
 We also found ourselves spending a lot of Saturdays up in Park City at Promontory - taking advantage of the perks of a family membership.
Nothing too exciting or monumental for the month of September. Enjoy a few snapshots of our month! see Insta for an explanation
loves trying to figure out how things work
my baby sis went off to college

still sleeps like a champ in the car!
really into reading books by himself lately
we celebrated uncle Shaun's birthday
his favorite place to play in my favorite jammies
celebrated the mama-to-be's (Nielle) birthday
cousin time is the best time
gold glitter. everywhere. 

Kiawah Island

Get ready for a picture overload! We had so much fun spending a week on the East Coast. We lived in North Carolina for a few years when I was younger and I hadn't been back for years. I was so excited to go again, see old friends, and share it with Brad. We started our visit with a couple days in Charlotte - tasting yummy foods and visiting with friends. We stayed with our "framily" (bestest family friends) the Draughons. We became instant friends with their family when we moved there back in '97 and every time we get together it's like we've never been apart. It's the best kind of friends!
We started off our first morning with breakfast at a place called, Toast. Our goal was to not eat at any chain places the whole trip. Trying new places is fun and, I believe, a huge part of the vacation experience. Then we did some window shopping in Birkdale and headed home for lunch. For dinner we went to a yummy fried chicken place called Tenders. They had a bunch of different, original dipping sauces. SO fatty, but SO good!

We left the next morning for Kiawah Island, South Carolina. Some may say this is a random destination, but if you know the South, or my parents, you know this is a coveted, fabulous vacation spot. My parents have been going for years, and they finally decided they wanted to share it with us.
We stopped in Charleston for lunch on the way down and killed some time at a splash pad while waiting for our reservation at Magnolia's.

the sibs eating at Magnolia's
We also walked all around Charleston looking at the BEAUTIFUL colonial homes and learning about the history behind all of them. I'm obsessed with these style of homes and dream of having one some day - smaller, of course.

We got to Kiawah later that afternoon, picked up our bikes for the week, and got settled in our condo. Later, for dinner we headed into town to have pizza at La Tela Pizzeria and did some grocery shopping for our meals at home and snacks for the beach. I got a really yummy pizza, but I tried my dad's butternut squash salad and it was AMAZING! I wish I could go back and get it!
The next day we spent the day at the beach and riding our bikes. It was seriously a dream come true for me - I was riding a beach cruiser - ON THE BEACH. We all loved it. We rode our bikes pretty much anywhere we wanted to go and it was so great!

On one of the nights there we went to a really awesome dinner at The Sanctuary in The Ocean Room It was SO cool! They had a server for every couple of people and it was super gourmet cooking. The presentation of the food was unbelievable and it was SO good. The steak LITERALLY melted in my mouth - they explained their technique of how they cook it and how it was the same color throughout and the history behind the chefs, servers, etc. It was a pretty posh place and it was a lot of fun to pretend to be a part of that life for a night.

We spent the next morning riding our bikes over to Osprey to see the alligators. There weren't very many out and usually they just literally hang out on the golf courses, but it was pretty hot so they were mostly in the shade or in the water. We spotted a couple and had fun watching them. It was a LONG ride but a great workout - especially after eating as much as we had!

Pit stops on the bike ride

Later that day we got cleaned up and headed over to a beautiful course on the ocean called The Ocean Course. ha! We had fun walking around, then ate lunch there on the course. It was Beautiful! They had the BEST bread pudding I've ever had!

Our last night in Kiawah we window shopped for souvenirs and enjoyed the pouring rain downtown. Carter LOVED the rain and came home soaking wet. We ate dinner at home - trying to get rid of our left over food and played games with everyone. Kiawah was so good to us!

We left Sunday morning and stopped to see an amazing, beautiful tree called the Angel Tree. It is so amazing the way it has grown. Unfortunately it was closed, so we had to snap our pictures from outside the fence.

We got back to Charlotte, NC later that evening and had banana pancakes for dinner. That is what we had with our friends, the Draughons the first night we met them. It was so fun to do!
We had one more day in North Carolina before we headed home to Utah. We took a walk down memory lane and drove past our old house, schools, and parks. We also went to lunch with some other life-long friends of ours, Olay and Banda - unfortunately we didn't snap a picture with them. That night we went to dinner with more of our friends at Cabo Fish Tacos in "No Da" an artsy, fun part of town. Then had dessert at Amalie's - they had really yummy Macaroons and a huge variety. The way it was decorated was really fun too.

our old home - the yard looks a little "tired"
Art at Amalie's

This was such a fun trip with the whole family. It was fun to be together and share our childhood memories with Brad and Karlie. Thanks to mom and dad for making this trip happen!!!
Carter actually did surprisingly well on the flights. We were a nervous wreck. It helped a TON that neither of our flights were full and there were six other family members that we could pass him around to if he got bored with us.

poor little guy had pink eye on the way home :(