Our Ballroom Babe

Madeleine joined the school’s ballroom team this year. She loved every minute of it! With her mix of choreography memorization skills and theatric pizzazz, she wowed Rob and I every time she got on the dance floor.

She went to practice twice a week before school and practiced in our family room every afternoon. She loved going to competitions and really enjoyed being part of a team.

Her team did really well and went to state (which is where Rob and I had our first encounter with a real dance mom…Scary and yet so hard to look away!).

We are so impressed with her instructors and are grateful that they work so hard to give these kids an amazing experience.

Madeleine had quite the birthday this year. She decided months earlier that she wanted to use her present and party budget (and saved her own money) and stay overnight in a hotel with her cousin. We had a lot of fun! Since the hotel was mostly paid for with points, she was able to choose some fun activities to do including going to Classic Fun Center, a movie, and Build-a-Bear.

When we arrived back at home, she found her sister had made a surprise for her…rice krispie treat hedgehogs!


Although her celebration had already been a blast, Rob and I decided to throw her a surprise party anyway…at SWIG! It was a swinging success!

While we are on the subject of Madeleine, I have a funny story:

Madeleine and I had a dentist appointment this week. She has a cavity and I have one from a couple of years ago that needs to be redone. She really wasn’t looking forward to it. The day came and I was still congested and getting over a cold. I decided to reschedule and when I called they asked if I wanted to reschedule Madeleine’s as well. “Why yes, let’s do that,” I said.

Madeleine came home from school and immediately started crying because she was so nervous. I broke the good news to her and said we were going to sneak away to go shopping together instead. Well now that cheered her right up, of course! So off we went to the Outlets.

She requested mini pretzels and we sat down on a bench in the lovely sun eating them together. I remarked, “This is nice!” She responded,

“Yep! I would be sitting in a chair with a weird man hovering over me,

but instead I’m sitting on a bench…eating pretzels…

like a BOSS!”

I laughed pretty hard and told her I love how funny she is. She says “I know. It’s one of my great qualities.”

Sure is!

Redman Camping Trip 2016

In early July I took the kids on a quick camping trip. If I don’t go camping at least one or two times per year I’m likely to get pretty grumpy!

It is sometimes difficult to get a reserved campground on a Friday night in a local canyon so I decided to shoot for the Redman Campground in Big Cottonwood Canyon which is first come first serve. The campground is located near the top of the canyon between Solitude and Brighton Ski Resorts (the best campground are always at the top of the mountains).

We arrived at the campground around 11 am to find that only one campground remained available; however, the campsite was still occupied and would be for a couple more hours. We parked our car next to the campground and started wandering around the environs. We had a good time just goofing off in Nature while waiting a little while for our campsite. Here are a few photos we made during that time.

After getting the tent setup we played games and explored the area.

Julie came up that afternoon (she is not much into sleeping on the ground these days) to do an activity with the girls while Nate and I went mountain biking at Solitude. We had a great time.

We cheated a little on this camping trip at went to get pizza at solitude because our dinner plans for cooking over the fire didn’t quite work out. The pizza was really quite good.

That evening and night we had a blast doing all of our traditional camping activities; roaming the woods, cutting wood, roasting marshmallows, star gazing, and telling stories around the campfire until we are too tired to stay awake.

The next morning we lit an awesome fire to warm us up, ate breakfast, played in the woods a little more, and then cleaned up camp.

We headed up to the Brighton store to get a little more food before heading to Doughnut Falls for a good Saturday hike.

We made it too the falls in record time and even conquered the upper rock scrambling portion of the trail. Way to go kids!

We had a great outing and look foreward to the next time.

Roller Girls

We are experiencing a resurgence in the popularity of rollerblading in our neighborhood. Is this an isolated occurence among 7 to 9 year olds or are others experiencing a similar trend? I (Rob) of course could not be happier with this as rollerblading is a 90’s favorite. Anyone else remember Airborne? Classic movie.

Anyway, I went skating with Madi, Cara and a couple neighbor friends the other day and I shot some video. Hope you enjoy this.