Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Oregon Coast

This past week our family took advantage of Justin and I having a whole week of vacation together, and my mom and dad being in Portland, Or, for Dad's work. We packed up the car and headed off to Portland and the Oregon Coast. It was amazing. The boys and I had never seen the ocean before so, needless to say, we were amazed by its endless beauty and could not resist playing in the water regardless of the fact that we had to walk around in wet clothes for the rest of the day. We love spending time together and were so happy that Grandma and Grandpa were able to experience all it all with us. Thanks Mom and Dad for a great vacation, we can hardly wait until the next time.

The boys were seeing how they measured up to the bears at the Portland Zoo.
Just a glimpse of Oregon's beautiful landscape.

Hangin' out with their super cool new friends.

Justin better watch out he might have some competition.

Getting ready to jump the waves. The boys were soaked by the time we were done playing.

Trying to get our sea legs under us.

So happy to be together. By-the-way the only time I ever have any body in my hair is when the the wicked hair dresser known as humidity totally molests my my style (which usually doesn't need a lot of help to look bad). There was not one decent picture of me from this whole day but oh well I would so be willing to look like this again just to go back.
Danny smelling the roses and the Portland Rose Garden.

My Hercules strikin' a pose.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

It's finally Over

After 2 long years of doubt and sacrifice I can finally say that I did it! I have finally graduated on August 1, 2009, from ISU with an RN degree from the ADRN program. Man it feels so good to be done with school. I will be super awesome to not have to worry about getting my assignments done, studying for the next tests, and how in the world I am going to get all of my clinical hours done. Woo-hoo!!

Justin was super awesome! He stepped up and was both Mom and Dad for 2 years. I would not have been able to do this without such a great and understanding husband.
My celebration jig

My sweet friend Nicholette who suffered right along with me for 2 long years and also graduated. (We were just a bit emotional.)

My boys have all given many different reasons why they are happy that I am done with school and it all centers on the idea that I will be home and spend more time with them. The boys have all been so understanding and accepting of the sacrifices that we had to make. I love that they have been so great now it is time to have some fun.
I am completely happy. I know that I could not have done this without the support of my beautiful family, especially Justin. Thank you, honey, you were always so supportive and willing to do what ever it took to make this journey as painless as possible. You are wonderful! I love you.

Bitter Sweet

2 years ago I was very reluctant to put Preston in a Preschool. I had been lucky to keep Preston at home with me until I had decided to finish my nursing degree but because of my school schedule something had to be done. I was very fortunate to find an opening for him at the hospital child care center, Kids Korner. It was very hard to leave him there the first couple of days but within a week I knew this preschool was going to be good and Preston would be well taken care of. Now that I have finished school and because Preston starts kindergarten in less than a month, Preston no longer has to go to school and can stay home with Justin and I.

Friday was Preston s last day at Kids Korner and I was so surprised to find that I was a little sad that I could no longer take him there. The staff at the school has always been so wonderful to him and treated him so well. I was grateful to be able to send him to a place that was so great. I am happy that they took such great care of him while I was so busy with school.

Preston and his 1st year teacher Miss Ashley
(Commonly known as "My Ashley")

Preston's second year teacher Miss Erica

Preston is excited to give all of his teachers a special gift to tell them thanks for all of their hard work.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Ahhh, Family...

This weekend we went to Lake Wolcott for the Will family reunion (Justin's fam). We had a great time! 2 fun filled days of camping, playing in the water, eating great food, and hanging out with a lot of family. We were all able to have go tubing behind the boat, Justin water skied, there was a lot of jumping off of the boat in the middle of the lake (Preston was even brave enough to try it), and constant swimming and water play. It was a wonderful way to spend the hottest weekend of the year so far.

I tried knee boarding for the first time and did pretty good (if I do say so my self), I even was able to start in the water which I was told is harder. I wouldn't know cause it was my first try. It was super fun, thanks Stacy you were a great teacher. The boys loved jumping off the dock, they did it all day long. There were hundreds of cannonball contests between the cousins young and old. It took a while for Preston to gather the nerve to jump but after the first time he was totally hooked.

Trevor and Danny were the first ones in the water and the last ones out the last picture was taken after our camp was packed up and we were ready to say our goodbyes. They had to get one final jump.

Nothing goes together better than Summer and family. Thanks Meyers for an awesome weekend. We had a blast!!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Our Summer in Pictures

OK, so I know I have not been a very good blogger this summer! We have had a pretty busy summer so far with so much more to come. Even though this has been a summer of unending rainfall, we have still managed to get out and do some pretty great things. I will try to give an overview in pictures and then become a better blogger in the future so I will not have to do any more catch up blogs.

All year long Trevor had studied the state of Oregon, at the end of the year he had to present a report, make a poster and float, and walk in the "Parade of Sates" at his school. This is Trev dressed as an Indian and showing off his projects and the state fair in his class.

In our house the closest thing we will ever have to twins is Preston and Trevor. They share the same birthday on May 20th. They love that they share the same day I think it gives them special bond. I also think it is really special that they share a birthday with my Grandma Simper.

Trevor built a rocket for a school project, we got to go watch the big launch and the driving range in town. Justin is helping Trevor put the engine in his rocket then Trev is showing the Rocket right before the launch.

Danny and Preston taking a short snooze en-route to Grandmas.

On Memorial Day we had a day of swimming and a B-B-Q at Green Canyon. Danny loves to snuggle with anyone or anything who will hold still long enough. Lucy, Grandpa Simper's Dog, was the grateful recipient that day.

We have had a summer full of races, this is Trevor running the 5K in Pocatello's Heart and Sole race (in the rain). I think this is pretty close to the end and Trevor looks like he is doing awesome and feeling pretty good about it. Justin and I ran the 10K, Justin came in 1st in his age group in this race, Trevor came in 3rd for his age group. In the Teton Dam Marathon, Trevor got 3rd for the 5K for his age group and I also got 3rd in my group as well.

This is the picture I sent in to the State Board of Nursing for my RN license for which I will be eligible for in less than a month. AWESOME!!

Danny had to have 7 teeth pulled by the dentist for orthodontic reasons. He was a trooper, not one complaint of pain.

Justin had taken some time off from work to spend with the boys while I have been so busy with school. This is one of their outings to the zoo. They have loved spending more time with him and doing lots of different activities.
They are digging for fossils in the bottom picture.

A slip-and-slide and a righteous hill in the backyard goes hand-in-hand. What little boy could resist, I just prayed they stopped before they hit the fence.

One of the many games my Uncle Mike comes up with. It may look strange but it is a blast. You may have wondered what happens when you put 4 people in one spandex ring, well we found out. It was great!

This was the 3rd of July swimming at Jensen's Grove in Blackfoot. The kids swam all day, the parents visited, and we all had a great time. Stephen even stopped by in his police uniform, the kids think it is so awesome that their uncle is a police officer. Stephen is my nephew Ryan's hero, he told me.

After Jensen's Grove we went to Fort Hall to watch an Elvis impersonator (which was pretty good). We were lucky enough to arrive 2 hours early, thanks to Miriam's need to be early for everything, so while we were waiting the kids had a dance competition. This is Preston showing the cousins his righteous moves.

And here's Elvis. He was pretty great, he sounded just like him.

We got a picture with Elvis! Justin kept saying, "You know he's not the real thing, right?" We didn't care, we thought he was great.

Friday, May 22, 2009

We Did It!!

I am so happy to say that all of the training has finally paid off!

About a year ago Justin and I started running together to get into shape. I had a lot further to go than Justin did when it came to physical fitness. We decided that we would begin to "train" for races to keep ourselves motivated. We both successfully completed a 10k (6.2 miles) last fall and began to feel more comfortable and excited about attempting longer runs. The original plan was to be able to run a half marathon by spring and a full by fall. Our race schedule was moved up significantly when we realized that we had 8 months to train for the next race and my constant and usually unwise inpatients to get the end result. Justin, in his infinite wisdom, repeatedly questioned the decision to run the full by spring, but continued to patiently support me by training with me.

We registered for the race in December, which meant there would be no backing out, trust me we tried. The closer the race came and the longer the Saturday morning runs grew, the more apprehensive we became. By the time we were supposed to be running 20 miles (thanks Rachel for bailing us out) we knew we had bitten off more than we could chew. During the next month we fretted and worried about the ensuing 26.2 miles that were looming in the near and gloomy future. I called the Marathon Headquarters to find out if we could change from the full to the half with no success.

Finally, we came to terms with the fact that all we had to do was finish the race. We knew that we would not come in firs,t and didn't care if we were last to cross the finish line because at least we would accomplish our goal. So, for the rest of the month we continued to train almost as scheduled (it was a little hard to talk ourselves in to the final 20 mile run).

May 16th finally came, starting at 4:00am. We loaded a bus that took us 26.2 miles up the road and dropped us off. At 7:00am the starting cannon rang and there was definitely no turning back. After a very long and hard 5 hours and 8 minutes our training and apprehension had finally come to an end as we crossed the finish line together. We know we made no speed record, we averaged about 11.7 minutes a mile (we were not the last to cross the line). But we are both very proud to say that we can and have run a marathon!

The scenery was beautiful, as you can see behind us. Justin looks great running, I look very awkward and uncoordinated.

This is somewhere after mile 18. I had to have people at a first aid station cut the sleeves off of my shirt because I am pretty sure that I was beginning to suffer from heat stroke.

Here we are crossing the finish line together. We were so happy because we had finally finished and my parents had brought our boys to see it happen. Throughout the race Justin would say, "Just think pretty soon we will be able to see the boys, won't that be great." It really meant the world to Justin and I that they were there at the end. Thanks Mom and Dad, you are the greatest.

Sweet release! It is over!

I am not sure if we will ever attempt to run a full marathon again. It is one of the hardest things I have ever done and, aside from child birth, I have never hurt as badly as I did on Sunday after the race, but I can honestly say that I am so happy that we did it and I would not take it back. Justin, thank you for all of your support, I know that I would not have been able to do it if you had not been there every step of the way. I love you, Sweetheart.