Saturday, March 17, 2012

Family Time

After spending nearly two weeks cooped up with the plague, I insisted that we spend a day out and about together as a family.  Chopper's still doing pretty badly in the coughing and congesting department, especially at night, so we decided to skip the ward campout (which I was honestly really bummed about) and instead we went to . . . yep you guessed it!  The Arboretum.

But before we get started with that -- I forgot that I had taken these pictures of how we spent our time the past two weeks:
 In princess dresses and boxes 

 Or playing with pillow fluff.  Both activities that the girls really did love.  I don't know why I spend money on toys!

Anyway, back to our beautiful day . . .   
 We found the Georgia O'Keefe house this time -- very appropriate. 

This is what happens when I stage a picture:  always trying to get the girls to comply.  Abby just doesn't care, there's too much going on.  Megan deliberately turned her back and refused to look at me.  

 But was very happy when a flying apple blossom landed on her nose.  Sigh.

 Ah, the joy of digital photography.  Here we have picture #1 with me trying to get in with both of the girls and Megan skulking (yes, skulking) off.  Crop it and you get -- 

 A nice picture of Abby and I!  Someday Megan is going to wonder why we have no good pictures of her and I'm going to tell her it's really all her fault.  This is also why I spend a good deal of time taking as many pictures as I can -- every now and then I can surprise her in a happy moment.

 Like this one.

 Abby on the other hand doesn't look or cheeses out completely.  And she has strawberry juice all over her face.


 Ah, how sweet!  Ok it's not really a bench dedicated to Chopper's dad but it got darn close!

 Watching the fishes in the pond, and keeping Abby from going in after them.

 The secret garden!  Actually it's the poetry garden but it's so out of the way that the crowds of people that are at the Arboretum on the weekends typically don't go there.  It's one of my favorite locations.

 And a favorite of the girls because it has a pea gravel walkway that provides endless entertainment in examining, throwing, "feeding" the bushes, dumping on your sister, etc.
 See, feeding the bushes pea gravel -- very happy.  If I had asked her to smile she would not have -- this was spontaneous.

 Me being artistic.  Or trying anyway.

 We ended up by a gorgeous clump of azaleas in full bloom and the girls actually complied with pictures because I actually asked them to get in the bushes!  It was a dream come true for Abby.  Megan was trying not to get too poked.

 But I love this one with her head popping out of the back -- it makes me laugh.

 And Chopper got in on the action -- he's not nearly as cute in the azaleas though!

So tired she fell asleep on the way home and hasn't slept a wink since!  Which is a shame because I really need to mop the floors and clean the bathrooms before Grandpa gets here tomorrow.  We won't reveal how long it's been since that's happened.

One of the best things about these days out is that we have such a good time as a family.  Especially something like this -- there are no deadlines or places we have to be at a certain time, we have fun picnic lunches (which the girls LOVE because it usually involves snacky foods and juice boxes) and Chopper and I get to talk about stuff that's not important but fun to talk about.  Today we reminisced a little about the best trips we've taken as a couple or family.  I won't go through all the details now because I have an idea for later, but in 9 years we have done some really fun stuff.  And it hasn't even been "big" like going to Europe (haven't done it) or driving cross-country.  Oh wait, we have done that.  Four and a half times.  And since so much of that happened before the kids came, we want to go back!!  Hopefully eventually we will.  But I'm glad that we enjoy exploring and have the opportunities to do so.  And to enjoy great days like this at places we love.

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