Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wedding Trip!

We made the trip to Oregon to see Darren's sister, Jenni get married and it was such a great weekend filled with fun and family! Darren's siblings live all over the country, so the wedding brought family together we hadn't seen in a couple of years.

The trip started out with picking up my way cute niece and nephew, Megan and Kevin, at the airport, who flew in from Missouri. They got to hang out with us and play with my kids on the trip, which was great for me! We spent Friday night in Portland with my cousin Melinda and her family since Jenni and Michael were getting married at 9 AM in the Portland temple the next morning. It was great to catch up with them and see their new place. Thanks for taking care of us, Melinda!Here are our cute kids together at the breakfast table early on Saturday morning.Then we made it to the temple nice and early in Darren style and had time for a family photo shoot while we were waiting for everyone to show up.Here's the beautiful bride and groom as they're coming out of the temple. Don't they look so happy? I love how Michael is looking at her like "Yeah, she's mine for eternity now and I'm really happy about it!"Here's all the nieces and nephews that were at the wedding. We were missing a few, darn it. The wedding was so beautiful. I'm mad at myself for not taking more pictures at the reception because it was gorgeous. I was just too busy having a great time chatting, eating, dancing and cutting and serving the wedding cake with my SIL, Connie. We were horrible at it, and were giggling about it the whole time!Joseph and Kellen, best cousin friends.I also got to meet my newest niece, Carly. Isn't she precious? I was loving on her every chance I got.Look at all these cute kids!Megan, Kevin and me and the kids stayed a couple of extra days after the wedding to hang out with Grandma and Grandpa. We decided to spend Monday at the Oregon coast in Florence. Unfortunately, my kids didn't last long at the water. They didn't even make it to the water. The wind was blowing so hard that the sand stung your legs. Needless to say, Joseph and Justin were not happy about that. They're so short that it kept getting in their eyes too. We tried to play in the sand for a few minutes, but the boys were just miserable and bawling. It was pretty funny, actually. I wish I had a picture of it. So we settled for some souvenir shopping and ice cream eating.On Tuesday, we drove Megan and Kevin to the airport and tears were shed when we had to say good-bye. Justin called them his "friends" all weekend and was sad to see them go. Joseph told me at the airport, "I'll miss them when they're gone." We're so glad you could come and spend time with us, guys. And congrats to the newlyweds! We love you so much and loved spending your big day with you.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Pacific Science Center

I was just mentioning that I've lived in Seattle for 4 years now, and I confess, I haven't visited the Pacific Science Center since the first week we lived here! My oldest was just a baby. So we had much to experience here. My boys loved it. I must get a membership now because this place is so huge, you just can't get close to doing it all in one visit. There is so much to see and do and something for all ages. And the best part is, you're learning while your playing.

We hit the IMAX theater first and saw "Animalopolis" which was adorable. Both my kids thought it was funny and it completely held their interest. It's a series of funny nature clips of animals that are narrated in clever rhymes. Then on our way to the Butterfly House, Joseph couldn't resist the water cannon, what little boy can? The butterflies were my favorite part. So many different and beautiful ones just fluttering all around you! I really wanted one to land on me, but my boys wouldn't let me stand still enough for long enough, darn it. They kind of freak you out about how fragile they are and to watch your step, so my cautious little Joseph was uncomfortable in there and didn't want to stay near as long as I wanted to. Or maybe butterflies just aren't as cool to boys as they are to girls, I don't know. Anyway, enjoy my butterfly pictures and I'll stop blabbing about them.Joseph is obsessed with the solar system right now, so he was so excited to see this part of the science center. Look at the look of wonder on his face. I love it!Really cool dinosaurs!I didn't get any good pictures of the great play area they have for babies and toddlers, but my 2 year old didn't want to leave after going in there! And it was huge. He didn't even get to see all of it, he was having so much fun and they had to kick us out of there at closing time. It was a great afternoon!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Experience Music Project & Science Fiction Museum

Thanks to my friend, Shannon, my kids and I got to visit a couple of great museums in Seattle for free and tell you about them. Shannon has an amazing review and giveaway blog called "The Mommy Files" that you can visit here. I was so excited to visit the EMP/SFM because although I've lived in Seattle for four years now, I didn't think there was much for my kids to enjoy at these museums (both museums are housed in the same building). But I was proved wrong! First we went to the Experience Music Project side of the museum and no, my boys didn't care to look at all of the paraphernalia of Jimi Hendrix, Nirvana, or Pearl Jam, but they LOVED the Music Lab. That's where they could get their hands on the instruments and play with them. Listening stations,keyboards,the mixing board and of course, the drums.Then we were on to the Science Fiction Museum where they don't let you take any pictures of the cool things they have there. Joseph was excited to name the Star Wars characters we saw, including a life size R2D2. And I found my own excitement in explaining to Joseph who the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and E.T. are. They have life-size models of them too. But the best part of the museum, I thought, was the Jim Henson exhibition currently on display. Justin thought it was hilarious to pretend to be Bert at the puppet theater. It was great that they had that place for kids to play and touch the puppets because you can't touch any of the others on display. Check out the video to see how you can be in the Muppet's Band. I have a whole new appreciation for puppeteers. Those puppets are heavy! videoThe exhibition was done very well. I studied art history in college and took a class I loved about museum curatorship so I'm a nerd about noticing the presentation like that. What I thought was really great was that they covered several whole walls from floor to ceiling in fuzzy muppet material in really bright colors. Here's my boys in front of the green fuzzy wall at the end of our fun morning. You can tell Justin is really worn out when he has to hold his thumb in this mouth like that!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Good times with Grandma

We had a few fun days with my Mom last week. Too few if you ask me. She spoils us and we have missed her! We played at the park...went swimming...went to the Pacific Science Center...saw some beautiful butterflies at the butterfly house...and played hard at home too! Thanks so much for coming, Mom! Now we can last until Christmas. It's as if Joseph and Justin understand that they have to pack as much Grandma as possible into her visits. They both demand her attention at her every waking moment. It was adorably sad to hear Justin's little voice plead "Gammah, I go with you?" when we dropped her off at the airport. Grandmas are the best.