Sunday, 1 November 2015


It was Chloe's last year for a school costume parade. She's lucky she gets some bonus years in a K-9 school!

Chloe as Little Red Riding Hood

Little Red Loves her Wolf

Carmen is more in the last-minute-group-costume years. Apparently Discovery Channel's Shark Week only runs from Sunday - Friday.

Plus a last minute decision to go to the youth dance in costumes from a friend's dress-up box.

Halloween is a pretty quiet night around here with our kids no longer going out to trick-or-treat, and the whole neighbourhood being a little older. We had about 30 kids come to the house, so plenty of leftover candy just for us!

Sunday, 25 October 2015

Take Your Kid to Work Day

 (Send your kid to someone else's work day)

Chloe is one lucky girl! 

She got to shadow a private chef on Friday as her Take Your Kid to Work experience with one of the loveliest people we know!

Chloe's actual lunch

Susanne cooks for a workplace, making healthy snacks as well as the staff lunch. How much do I wish my office did that???

lunch as it was photographed

Friday was the birthday of one of the staff, so lunch was birthday boy's request of Smoked Salmon Eggs Benedict with a side of potato hash and bacon.

Chloe got her picture taken with a billionaire for the second time.

I guess billionaires that hire a full time chef for the office also bring pets to work. What a life! I wish I had my own private chef. . . if only Chloe wasn't at school all day.

Friday, 16 October 2015

Thanksgiving Weekend

Sometimes doing something twice in a row makes it a tradition around here, and I'm not sure that's the case this time, but we've now gone to Utah for two consecutive Thanksgivings.

We drove down to Great Falls Thursday night after work, and we arrived at Dillon around noon on Friday.

We had lunch at the Taco Bus and shopped the Patagonia outlet.

We got to Salt Lake City with enough time to do baptisms at the temple and walk around temple square a bit.

Saturday morning Carmen met some friends for breakfast and photos. Meanwhile Ken, Chloe, and I went shopping for Thanksgiving dinner groceries.

We met up at Jaclyn and Mason's place and played a quick game of Coda. Can I just point out here how Mason is sitting? I told him he could be a yoga instructor if the electric engineering thing doesn't work out.


Carmen and Ken went fly fishing.

More pictures of Carmen, since she caught more fish, haha.

I think the score was 5-3

Our family isn't competitive that way, though. Right?


Chloe, Jaclyn, Mason, and I went to the corn maze and dinosaur museum at Thanksgiving Point. Chloe gave us her best Bellatrix Lestrange impersonation, haha. The dinosaur museum was amazing! It is the second largest collection of dinosaur fossils in the world, second to a museum in China. Well worth the visit.

Saturday night was the homecoming game for the BYU Cougars. What a gorgeous spot for a football game!
Even though they won 45-38 and the fight song was sung after every touchdown, I still don't have it learned (the song's a little long) but I do have the 'rise and shout the cougars are out' part figured out for when to stand up. Also, I still need to work on doing the 'first down' synchronized karate chop thing. 

Carmen bought a CougarTail, which is a Long John caramel frosted donut the size of a baguette. 

Good times!

Sunday we went to the married student ward and had turkey dinner. It was a perfect weekend.

Larch Valley, Banff

The end of September is prime hiking season for Larch Valley.

Larch trees are coniferous, but turn yellow and shed their needles in the fall. So beautiful!

Carmen had Friday off school so she organized a few friends to go hiking together. They got a misty day in the mountains, which gives a real quality to the pictures. Carmen came home and said she was going to send so many pictures to Steven and he was going to be so jealous. It turns out you can go hiking just for spite.

Because it was Steveoooooo who told us about this hike back in the spring and who was bemoaning the fact that (assuming he returns to BYU) he won't be able to do a fall Larch Valley Hike for at least 5 years.

The next day (Saturday) Ken and I took Chloe and her friends on the same hike. It rained all the way there, but my weather app kept telling me we would have a clear day and we did! 

Chloe's cute friends.

Our Saturday pictures turned out bright and sunny, just like our day!

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Back to School

It has been pointed out to me that I haven't yet blogged about back to school. I don't know why I would, it is pretty sad news.

Carmen started back hours earlier than most 11th grade students - she had to be at the school at 7am to be a 'Link Leader' to the incoming 10th grade students. She got an 'after' shot for her first day of school. I don't think there would have been any light at 6:30am.

Chloe rules the school this year in 9th grade. She and I are both a little bit conflicted over this.

I feel a little bad for the girls doing homework while Ken and I go off and have fun . . .  but not that bad.

Sunday, 30 August 2015

NYC: Wednesday

I think by our last day I was tired of taking pictures. We had a pretty relaxed day and saw some cool places.

We visited Lincoln Centre and Juilliard School, which are geographically intertwined. They are also right across the street from the temple. I think we missed an opportunity here not planning a temple baptism trip with Carmen and Chloe, darn it.

We went to MOMA. We shopped unsuccessfully for some very specific basketball shoes for Carmen. We hit the M&M's store for Chloe to buy a birthday present for a friend who will be especially appreciative and enjoyed trying new flavours ourselves.

More swimming! (Carmen and Chloe in the pool alone from our hotel window)

We struggled  a little bit with what to do and where to eat on our last night, but we did just the perfect thing. We went to the original Shake Shack in Madison Square Park, right across from the Flat Iron Building. The light fell as we sat and talked and ate. It was a beautiful summer evening, and concluded our vacation in a way that solidified the experience and the memories.

We stayed until dark and said goodbye.

NYC: Tuesday

Tuesday we took the Path train and popped up in Hoboken New Jersey.

We were not disappointed! We ate cannoli's, walked over to Frank Sinatra Park at the waterfront and sat for a bit, and then returned to Manhattan.

Chloe got her artsy photo. She quite disliked the hot oppressive subway stations, but she can smile for a picture.

We walked through Greenwich Village into Washington Square Park and then all the way back to our hotel via Bowery.

The pool was a vacation saver!

Chloe and Carmen aren't normally happy shoppers, but we had a really good time in Soho in one store in particular,

And walked out victorious! Or so we thought. It turned out that one of the items we purchased wasn't in our shopping bags - but we didn't notice until we were packing up to go home after stores were closed, and we left at 5:30 am to catch our plane so I couldn't deal with it until we were back in Calgary. I wasn't completely hopeful calling 2 days later from home, but they couldn't apologize enough, and have mailed it to us free of charge. Phew!

We ate dinner in Little Italy,

And still made it back for a night swim under the cafe lights!

NYC: Monday

Movies weren't the only media that influenced our NYC experience. We made many Seinfeld references all week. This one is: Top of the Muffin TO YOU!

Monday we had reservations to take the ferry to Liberty Island and Ellis Island. Here is Ken's view from the ferry.

This pose was Carmen's idea, but Chloe executed it perfectly.

Carmen and Chloe brought their polaroids and got some awesome pictures with the cloud texture that day.

The 4 of us at the base of Lady Liberty.

Ellis Island was interesting and a beautiful tribute to what National Parks is capable of.

We got a short tour of the building and watched a movie and learned a few things. I didn't know that immigrants landed in Manhattan and then were ferried over to Ellis Island for processing.

More cooling off in the pool.

Carmen and Chloe were tired of walking but Ken and I wanted to walk over the Brooklyn Bridge, and it turned out to be a great idea.

Ken and I needed another second to process that Carmen was about to take a picture.

We ate pizza for dinner at Grimaldi's in Brooklyn and then outvoted Carmen and Chloe's idea to take a cab back to Manhattan.

Good thing we did!

It was a beautiful walk back.