Jenna and Kelly took off after work Friday, 8/28, and headed for Zion. This has been an annual trip for them three years in a row. They made it to the hotel in time to swim and then spent a full day hiking to Angel's Landing and then through the Narrows. The water was deep in some spots this year, but Jenna was undeterred. She took several jumps from a huge rock. Heather and Mom were at home getting Heather started with her first day of school which is featured in a separate blog post. Go Jen and Kelly! Great Daddy-Daughter bonding time!
It's the last week of summer before school starts. No wait. School starts for Heather this week. Boooooooooo! Heather started her first day of 11th grade this week (8/27). High school is half way over for her (cue Heather cheering in the background). I was on campus the second day for something and ran into her and her friends in the office. Luckily they are all used to their camera-happy moms and so obliged me with a picture. We had a back-to-school Starbucks run to catch up with dear friend, Grace, since she's not at FVHS with the gang. So fun to hang out and visit for the girls and for their moms! Tammy opened up her pool, and it was heaven sent. I had taken to going out to the driveway to sit in the trailer and run the air conditioning. The heat makes me so grumpy and lazy. We are blessed to have such a great neighbor and friend in Tammy. Jenna and Dad are off exploring Zion, and they will have their own featured post. Here we go Junior year!
We spent the day out in Murrieta with Judy. She is such an amazing photographer, and she took us to her friends house to shoot the girls. Heather is 16 and Jenna 13.5, and we couldn't be more thrilled. Judy took Heather's first picture when Heather was just over a year old. We have amazing documentation of our girls' growth, and we're so thankful that Judy does this for us.
We got to explore the grounds for a bit (awesome treehouse, tennis court, front porch) and take some pictures with different backdrops. I love the sisters pictures that the girls sit for. One day these will be such a treasure, more so than they are now. We also go to visit Winston for a bit and have lunch with Judy. Winston still remembers us.
8•13 Taking Jenna to Costco resulted in her purchase of a bear. The $35 price tag was great, and she made the decision to purchase after listening to my caution about the bear being so big it would eventually be in her way and become annoying. Life lessons.
8•14 Our desire to make Heather's 16th a huge celebration has just been split into all kinds of pieces. There was dinner and gifts on her birthday, the trip to Phantom of The Opera the following week, and the OMAM Concert this month. Today we finally got some brownies and her #16 candles on them. We'll just have a new hashtag that says, "Celebrate all year!" Luckily she's a happy girl.
8•15 Jenna was able to go to the temple to do baptisms with the Young Women today.
8•20 Jenna grabbed some new chalk I purchased and created a driveway masterpiece. We were seriously impressed. Our neighbor was impressed too and asked her to recreate it on her driveway for an upcoming girls' retreat being held at her house. Go Jen!
8•24 Our friend's son was married last week in Utah and had a California reception here.We met Smith and Tricia and their two kids, Jordan (age 12) and Rachel (age 8) when they moved into our neighborhood and ward. That was eons ago when Jenna was just a baby. Jordan met a wonderful girl named Danielle, and after they both served missions for our church, they decided they were meant to be. We were so happy to help them celebrate!
We scheduled this weekend to meet Michelle, Shane and Gavin at my dad's Idyllwild place to continue clean out. After Michelle and I initially visited in July, worked and realized the task was going to take a lot longer than anticipated, we scheduled time with the husbands and some man muscle. We rented hotel rooms for an overnight stay so we didn't have to drive back home in between packing days. The kids thought this was cool, and it was nice to have a shower and place to stay closer to the action. We concentrated on the outdoor areas as well as moving the furniture pieces that required the guys. We filled the back of a UHall truck and took another load or two to the local dump and donation centers. After two full days of work, there is still a lot to do, but we were pleased with the outdoor areas being cleaned up. I worked on the porch which seemed insurmountable. I concentrated on one area at a time until I could see the end. It was really easy to want to feel frustrated at how much was left after all our hard work, but we had to focus on what we DID accomplish. We have scheduled another packing day in October, and we'll need another rental truck. There's that much stuff. After we unloaded the truck, we couldn't believe how much space it took up. If we can't get Dad to part with more stuff, his new place is going to look like a warehouse of boxes with isles in the middle. Yikes.
Sunday arrival meant no beach time, but the girls ran down and had a spot of fun anyway.
Being in the water with Dad is the best whether boogie boarding or rafting the waves.
Sometimes we get too busy to check out the sunset, so I made sure to get a few in this year.
The Mormon Battalion Center
Old Town San Diego - We toured the barn, school and Victorian house street as well as eating at our favorite Mexican restaurant.
No pictures due to not having water protection on our phones, but this is an image of one of the sea caves we kayaked to on our LaJolla Sea Cave tour. Jen and Heather got queasy, we are pretty sure Heather did more damage to her tailbone getting bounced over waves on the way out, but it was still a fun tour. I'm glad we did it simply to have a new adventure in SD.
When we weren't in Old Town or at the sea caves, we were in camp and on the beach. Michelle and Sarah Holbrook joined us for an overnight stay. Sarah broke her nose on a surf board which took some friend time away, but it was still so awesome to have them stay overnight and play. Judy and Bill came to visit one day too. We sat on the beach and later went to VGs for a doughnut. This was a great week of fun and relaxation. Such great family memories!
I'm a wife and mother of two of the sweetest girls ever. In my former life, I was an elementary school teacher. I love learning and sharing experiences, and the chance to journal for posterity. I wish I knew as much about my ancestors as my posterity is going to know about me!