Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Cripple Creek, CO

On Saturday we went to Cripple Creek.
In case you decide to click on that link, I may as well go ahead and tell you that Cripple Creek is a gambling town. But it sure is pretty!
I had 2 quarters ready to make me at least $333.92. That's a joke. There's a train in Cripple Creek that we wanted to take the boys on.
Here's us in the car on the way. Evan didn't understand what I was doing the first time around.
By the second shot, he was somewhat clued in but I gave up.
It's about an hour drive from our house to Cripple Creek. So we arrived at the train station soon enough.
Here we are! Train number 2.
The train only goes 4 miles (which is why it was cheap which is why we were able to go) but it lasts about 2 hours because we stop several times and the conductor gives a bit of history about the land. It's an old mining town.
Jason is upset because his eyes were closed in both pictures. I told him then he should start opening his eyes when people are taking pictures of him. Or wear sunglasses.
There's the conductor. An interesting fellow.
Evan remained rather cordial through the entire ride. When I say that word "cordial" I always think of the scene in Anne of Green Gables when Anne gets Diana drunk on Marilla's raspberry cordial by mistake. The end.
Cripple Creek is a really pretty area, in case you ever come visit us and ask us to take you there and we do.
It's also a rather small town.
As part of our history lesson on the ride, we were told that most of the trees in the area were cut down in the mining days to be used for housing and such. And at one point, because the town was made of wood the entire town burnt to the ground in a matter of weeks because of a few accidents involving fire. Which is why you should build a city of brick. In my own humble opinion.
Mid-point during our trip. we stopped at the spot called "echo canyon" or something with the word echo in it because the train whistle echoes and can be heard for 10 miles. When I yell outside really loud Jason thinks I can be heard for 11 miles. So.
One of the stunning views.
If I get pretty good at craps, I might move here.
Dawson was enthralled with this large flag.
I sat by some funny and endearing ladies from Texas. They used toothpicks to clean their teeth for nearly half the ride. I think it was the popcorn we all had.
These trains nearly killed us from black soot. I should sue and spend the money on
 texas hold 'em.
At the end of the trip our train passed these 2 old beat up cars. Picture worthy, I think.
Annnd.. that ended up being the last picture I took of our lovely train ride. So. Bye.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Evan is For Real

All credit for the title of this post goes to Jason Wilkins. Give credit where credit is due.
I would just like to say, it's a good thing I had Dawson first and Evan second. Because there would be no second if I had the second first. You know what I'm sayin?
This little guy right here is the cutest little ornery butt you'll ever meet.
In the way of parenting, he's the boss. In the way of fit throwing, he's the boss. In the way of problem solving, conniving, and climbing, he's the boss. 
If his car breaks down, no problem. He'll push it.
If the battery died, and we tell him "Don't push the car, it will ruin the battery",
 He'll push it anyway.
But he can drive that thing like nobodies business.
He's also pretty fast.
On your mark.
Get Set. No wait. What's that?
 He's curious about everything and asks "why" often. And "where are we going"?
He's shy, on his own terms. We haven't yet discovered what those terms are though. One minute he's hiding behind us if a stranger is attempting to talk to him and the next minute he's waving to a stranger.
He loves to be outside. 
He has crazy hair when he wakes up in the morning and after a bath. And when Jason wraps him up in the bath towel he demands to be allowed to walk to his room to get dressed.
He has the cutest way of saying things.
He's cute. And he likes to dance, which I'm pretty sure is what he was up to when we took this picture.
 He gets into trouble
Today, I caught him eating the tip of my pink highlighter while I was refilling his sippy cup.
This past weekend, my neighbor came over for coffee and she caught him poking holes in one of our favorite fancy chairs with a meat thermometer while I was making our coffee. Who thinks of this stuff?! Evan does.
This morning while I was brushing my teeth, he got his toothpaste and climbed into the bathtub and squirted it all over his knee.
Of course I've done several blog posts dedicated to Evan's shenanigans.
Like this one.
And this one.
During the moments he's not getting into trouble, you'll see him copying, following and cuddling his big brother. He missed Dawson dearly today -Dawson's first day back at school. He cried this morning when Dawson left and asked to go to school with him. 
Speaking of Dawson and Evan and toddler trouble, (the perfect segue to end this post) we recently had to switch Evan over to a big boy bed. This little adventure was nothing like the time we made the switch for Dawson.
Oh no. We finally had to break down and convert his crib to a toddler bed because he was climbing out of his crib at 2 in the morning and coming into our room. Now that we've switched, we've lessened the chance of a broken bone while he climbs out of bed to come to our room at 2am...
Oh yeah. He also likes Sprite.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Summer of Friends

The month of July brought with us some VISITORS. Did you hear me? Because I typed that word LOUD. I said VISITORS!
Let me take a moment to regain composure.
I also needed to regain composure because I'm currently in the process of making homemade caramel corn, and the I'm pretty sure I burned the first batch of popcorn. Which can be easily hidden with caramel.
One of my BFF's from college, Kate, came:
 There we are on my back porch and Kate obliged when I bossed her to let me get a picture of us.
Kate and I met my sophomore year of college. We were both pursuing degrees in music so we had tons of classes together and we became roommates. I had bangs back then. I don't highly recommend it except for Kate.
We went on choir tour together to Petoskey and Mackinaw Island: I'm not sure if she's ever seen this picture before. Here you go Kate:
Many of these photos have been ripped from a scrapbook I kept and scanned into our external hard drive for fear that one day the scrapbook might drown in a flood. A torturous death.
We were in choir together. I distinctly remember that during the weekend of the performance from which this picture was taken, our choir was singing "June is Busting Out All Over" (from Rodger & Hammerstein's "Carousel") only there were several choir members who changed the words to "Joy is Busting Out All Over" because I had to borrow the dress you see me wearing and it was a tad small in the cleavage region.
Ya'll took a quick look at my chest, didn't you?!
We ate brownie batter together on Tuesday's when we watched one of two movies: "Newsies" or "While You Were Sleeping" This was sometimes in addition to an order of Little Cesar's bread sticks. I don't think you've ever seen this picture before either Kate. Today's your lucky day!
Here we are smiling for the camera in our stunning black choir dresses:
Since you can't actually see the dress, here's a better view: "Hiiiiii".
We were in Bethel's production of "My Fair Lady" together. We were both "cockney's" and I must admit that I had one of the best accents in the entire production. Our piano player (who was a genius) suggested that those who needed help with their accent to come and be coached by me. No one did. Possibly because I couldn't actually teach it. I still remember my lines from the play.
She played the piano for me during one of my favorite song's for my senior voice recital. I still feel like I might get diarrhea from fright when I think of that performance. I'm deathly afraid of singing on stage. She helped calm my nerves back stage. I don't think I puked on her.
And... when we graduated, I cried. This is us with our other BFF and roommate Danielle (with no 'e' at the end but she threatens to kill me every time I let that little secret be known).

One of my BFF's from high school, Elizabeth came and visited about 2 weeks ago. 
Jason thinks he's soooo funny. 
I don't have nearly as many pictures of her or of us together. But I have a lot of memories.
She drove a gray Corsica with maroon interior and carted me around with her nearly everywhere she went. We were in band and theater together.
She got the lead in our high school production's "Anne of Green Gables" which is my favorite movie of all time and I wanted to be Anne. However, she did an awesome job and she had red hair. So. I had to be gossipy old Rachel Lynde. 
She was also one of our marching band's drum majors, and she really isn't all that grumpy though this picture makes it seem so.
Of course she came to my high school graduation open house and it is now that I'm noticing for the first time that we both chose polka dots. You can see in the right hand corner, another cropped picture which is the very tan knee of my friend Crystal Keen.

Lastly, we got to have breakfast with a Youth for Christ friend (one of Jason's past coworkers) last Saturday.
 I don't have any old pictures of Scott. He should be thankful for that because I have made it clear that I would post them if I had them. I do, however, have plenty of posts on this very blog of many of the days that Jason and I were Youth for Christ workers. 
Such as this one.
And let us not forget our YFC trip to San Diego, CA.
Or the JV ski trip.
Finally, one final note about friends. Just this morning, I received an email from a friend in California. Well, I've actually never met her in person, only through correspondence for work. It doesn't really matter because she is hilarious and I asked her if I could share with you all what she wrote to me in her email. She didn't respond because I imagine she hasn't received my email asking her if I could do so. She should learn to be more efficient... 
Loved the pictures of your hike!  One of them looked totally not real, the background was so beautiful with you guys and the kids.  So I am thinking you might have just lounged around with a twinkie and a yoo-hoo and photoshopped your sporty selves onto the background :)  It is so hot here, we have been lounging around in the ac.  Well, actually, we hiked down the cliffs at a local beach because a dead whale washed ashore and everyone was talking about the smell.  So, naturally, we thought "how bad can it really be?"  My friend, it can really be that bad.  There are no words, no words.  We spent hours watching people gagging, and then try to get a little closer, and then gag again.  Best.  Day.  Ever.  The last bad thing was:  the smell embedded itself into those little hairs in our noses.  No amount of blowing, sneezing, or picking could remove the stench.  2 hours of that noxious blend in our noses.  When we got home, our cats literally threw themselves on our shoes.  No lie...they heaved themselves on our shoes as we tried to walk.  We ended up having to put the shoes on the patio outside our bedroom, and the cats just stood at the slider and stared and meowed at the shoes.
So, thats what we did on our summer vacation so far.  Glad we could share this little moment together :)

I love friends.