Monday, January 19, 2009

Fish, fish . . .

Today we decided to take advantage of the holiday and do something fun. We slept in, did very little school-related work, and headed north to check out The Living Planet Aquarium in Sandy. Ainslie is still a pretty big fan of fish, so we thought this would be right up her alley.
The aquarium is really pretty cool. The first thing that we saw were these amazing jellyfish.

Ainslie loved the big aquariums with lots of bright tropical fish.

We saw all kinds of colorful fish, and we even found Nemo . . .

Ainslie also enjoyed the motorboat,
and she had a great time with the "hands on" exhibits. Her arms were just a little too short to reach the stingrays and the "crabbies," but she would have jumped right in if we would have let her.

The trip really was for Ainslie, but we all had a good time getting to know some of the aquatic friends at The Living Planet. It was a fun place to spend the afternoon.
But, that wasn't all the fun we had . . . burgers at Chadder's and a trip to what has become known as "the dream house" rounded out a rather pleasant day off. Too bad it's back to the grind tomorrow because we could get used to this vacation business.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

The Break . . .

Farewell Christmas break, we barely knew ye . . .It really is incredible how quickly two weeks of Christmas vacation can pass by. We had a wonderful time spending so much time with our friends and family. The fun started with chocolate dipping with the family in Payson . . .

The table was covered with lots of tasty treats, and the Christmas music got Ainslie in the mood to dance. It was all lots of fun. Josh was pretty excited to see that some of the souvenirs he bought on his mission had found their way out of storage. His favorite was this one:

The parties continued with Ainslie's friends at Cindy's. Ainslie always has lots of fun with her friends there, and Janae had fun that day when she joined Ainslie for the party.

Before we knew it, Christmas Eve was here. We had fun with the family in Spanish Fork while we waited for Joe and Karrie's plane to come in, and we decided to open all of our presents that night, rather than wait for the next morning. Ainslie loved the doll she got from Johnson and Cory, and we were happy to get some great things for our emergency preparation stuff.

We were pretty excited to see how Ainslie would react to presents and all of the fun on Christmas morning. It didn't take her long at all to figure everything out.

After opening our presents at home, we headed down to Spanish Fork for some delicious Christmas breakfast and a chance to say hello to Joe and Karrie. As always, Ainslie had a great time playing with Jay Jay, and Janae wowed us all with her Christmas carols on the piano.
Then it was off to Payson where we came face to face with a giant blow-up octopus. Ainslie loved it, and she spent a long time crawling on, wrestling with, and lounging in the "spider."

But that wasn't the only present . . . there were lots of other great presents waiting for us.

It was lots of fun to see everyone, eat a delicious dinner, and spend time together on Christmas.
The next morning we cautiously ventured off to New Mexico for Jordan and Alyssa's wedding. After seeing several cars slide off the road, and suriving a brief choking incident in the back seat, we were very grateful for the offer to have Ainslie stay with Josh's family in Payson. We knew the drive to Albuquerque would be long, but when the roads got bad we were even more grateful that Ainslie didn't have to endure the long drive with us.
The weather was pretty rough at times, but this meant that there wasn't a lot of traffic on the roads. That made it nice and easy to just stop in the road and snap a few pictures along the way. The scenery was pretty nice (when the snow let up enough for us to see it).
The wedding was beautiful, and it was great to spend time with family in Albuquerque and on the drive home. We were very happy that we made the drive.
After we got home from New Mexico we got together with more of Josh's family for even more Christmas presents.
Once again, Ainslie got some very fun new presents. The giant Elmo book and blocks have been especially popular around here.

Lots and lots of fun. Unfortunately, its back to school tomorrow. We think we've got our schedules all figured out, and this semester promises to be a good one. If nothing else, it should be the last one, and that's pretty exciting.