Sundance

On Sunday after church we headed up to Sundance for a hike. We got lost and ended up missing the lift that would have taken us to the Stewart Falls trail head. We ended up taking a short hike and then picnicking on the lawn while a live band played. Abe, the girls, Swathi and Soren all danced. I wish I had gotten pictures of that! But I did get pictures of the hike.

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Sruthi, Soren, and Lydia.

Sruthi, Soren, and Lydia.

Orem arrival

On Saturday afternoon Vince drove up from California and Clark, Swathi, Sruthi and Soren flew in late at night from Pittsburgh.

After Vince arrived, we all did errands. Vince, my mom and I got pedicures while Abe valiantly took all three children out for hair cuts at Cookie Cutterz.

Ammon started off a little tired.

Ammon started off a little tired.

But he perked up.

But he perked up.

Intently driving.

Intently driving.

Happy boy.

Happy boy.

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furniture and boxes in

My mom’s furniture came today for her and it looks so pretty! I will have to take a picture when her room is all put together.

It was a little hectic, so I just let the kids play with the neighbors for six hours. I let them all paint some of the moving boxes.

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Sorting boxes

Today was the first day I had spare energy in…half a decade? I don’t know why, but today I actually did not feel even a tiny desire to nap. With that spare energy I sorted boxes with my mom. She put me in charge of all of my “life story” boxes. After going through them, I have concluded that I must be pathologically addicted to documenting my own life. This blog is perfect evidence.

In fact, after sorting through those boxes, I came up with a new daydream. Maybe someday Abe and I can win the lottery and then buy a rinky dink house to store all of our family story stuff. It could be a family museum. Wouldn’t that be fun? In the meantime, I have to pare down or our whole house will be cluttered with “museum pieces”…

The girls played with various neighbors for almost six hours today. Their play somewhat assuaged my fears that they are not socialized enough.

The girls played with various neighbors for almost six hours today. Their play somewhat assuaged my fears that they are not socialized enough.

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BYU art museum exhibit

Abe and I went to do oil tastings at Mountain Olive Oil Company, and there we discovered we had mixed up our dates and missed the tastings. After rescheduling, we decided to go to the BYU art museum and look at the exhibit there.

It was amazing! The exhibit was about how images helped establish the notion of the “Old West,” and we discovered the artist, Maynard Dixon. His landscapes were almost better than the real thing.

There was also an exhibit about the canyons that we loved.

After looking at the paintings, we missed our kiddos and went home instead of grabbing ice cream. Sometime it’s nice to get away for a minute and realize we actually don’t want to be away all that much.

This amazing exhibit is in the foyer of the art museum.

This amazing exhibit is in the foyer of the art museum.

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I shot this as I turned to listen to the security guard tell me not to take pictures.

I shot this as I turned to listen to the security guard tell me not to take pictures.

This gallery did not have a "no pictures" rule, so we took a picture of this incredible panel. In real life it was huge and ten times more vibrant.

This gallery did not have a “no pictures” rule, so we took a picture of this incredible panel. In real life it was huge and ten times more vibrant.

painting

I have stopped napping recently and that allows me to get so much more done in a day. I am so grateful for that time back, although there is still more to do than seems can be done.

Today I let the girls paint for a couple hours. They enjoyed that a lot. Our new neighbors who moved in today told Abe tonight that they were going to send their son over for us to babysit for the whole day tomorrow. It probably looked like we do nothing since we spent so much time outside painting today. In reality, we spent hours on the kids’ music, flash cards, and reading practice. We also had a harp lesson to attend. I was so, so grateful Abe explained that right now we are on a schedule. It would be rather difficult to babysit on top of everything we are trying to accomplish, but part of me feels like I should try to make that happen. We will see what happens tomorrow, I guess.

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Ammon pictures

Behold too many pictures of my beautiful, sweet, sweet baby. Abe took these while I ran errands in the evening. Just when hand soap decisions had me demoralized and numb, I glanced down and saw these darling jump-starts.

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Camp wrap-up–and Mary’s first piano lesson!

Here are the pictures from harp camp that I never uploaded! I have more that won’t upload, but here are some.

Lydia and Willa were the pre-Twinkle contingency.

Lydia and Willa were the pre-Twinkle contingency.

Arts and crafts. Lydia did such a great job on her crafts.

Arts and crafts. Lydia did such a great job on her crafts.

Roussie invited us to her apartment and made Haitian food for our lunch. It was delicious!

Roussie invited us to her apartment and made Haitian food for our lunch. It was delicious!

Group class.

Group class.

Waiting for class to start.

Waiting for class to start.

We did yoga on the USU quad Thursday. It was beautiful.

We did yoga on the USU quad Thursday. It was beautiful.

I took a million pictures of Lydia talking with Grace. I loved all of her facial expressions. I get to see these expressions all the time, so I wanted to document them. I loved making friends with Grace’s mom, Colene.

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Lydia's final recital.

Lydia’s final recital.

This is from today. We went on a short birding walk.

This is from today. We went on a short birding walk.

Also, I gave Mary her first piano lesson yesterday! She did so great. I also brought out my flute today and both girls said they want to play it. We listened to a lot of French Trios today. If Ammon just picks up the viola, we will have our very own French Trio.

Harp camp continues (upswing)

Today at harp camp Lydia had the best practice session ever. That was made possible by the many bribes I bought at The Book Table yesterday. I love that store and wish we had one in Orem.

Yesterday was also the nadir of my life as a parent thus far, so it was really nice to have such a good day following that. The group coaching from the Suzuki therapist was shockingly helpful. We had good classes today too, and Lydia got to play in the park with her new friends and go to a pool party this evening. Afterward I took her out for sushi where she almost fell asleep into her rice. We returned to our hotel speedily and she is snoring away next to me. I am tempted to watch another Sherlock Holmes episode, but that would be irresponsible.

Oh, I almost forgot to record this: While we were at the park, Lydia started talking to a little boy about doves. (She has been doing her dove call nonstop for a month. Abe now daydreams about sitting on the porch with a shot gun and downing all of the doves from our neighborhood.) Anyway, the minute she said the word “dove,” this boy put his hands to his mouth and made a dove call. Lydia was enamored. She stuck with him like white on rice for the rest of our time at the park. Forget her harp friends–she wanted to hang with the boy who could call the doves!

Here are today’s pictures:

Group class.

Group class.

Kindermusik.

Kindermusik.

Suzuki Harp pool party. I am pretty sure I spent most of the party standing next to Elizabeth Smart's sister, but I was not able to confirm because she was talking to someone else the whole time. The Suzuki harp world is very, very small, and Elizabeth Smart is a part of that world. Because she is also one of my idols, I keep hoping I will run into/become friends with her. She has a baby girl now, and if that girl plays the harp, maybe my dream will yet come true!

Suzuki Harp pool party. I am pretty sure I spent most of the party standing next to Elizabeth Smart’s sister, but I was not able to confirm because she was talking to someone else the whole time. The Suzuki harp world is very, very small, and Elizabeth Smart is a part of that world. Because she is also one of my idols, I keep hoping I will run into/become friends with her. She has a baby girl now, and if that girl plays the harp, maybe my dream will yet come true!

TMSQ reunion with Roussie

We ran into Roussie this afternoon after institute. She works at Utah State as a Biotech engineer. We had dinner together and walked all around Logan for hours after dinner. I adore Logan. It is so, so beautiful here.

Master class.

Master class.

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Group class.

Group class.

The Suzuki Harp Institute.

The Suzuki Harp Institute.

Lydia asked to play by this tree on our way to the quad. I was so glad she did, because while we were playing by the tree, we ran into an old TMSQ friend, Roussie Buissereth!

Lydia asked to play by this tree on our way to the quad. I was so glad she did, because while we were playing by the tree, we ran into an old TMSQ friend, Roussie Buissereth!

The Logan temple.

The Logan temple.

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An old picture from the day when my mom arrived!!

An old picture from the day when my mom arrived!!

Another old picture from when the girls dressed up Ammon.

Another old picture from when the girls dressed up Ammon.