Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Those amazing Fall leaves we get to see in VA


Heading out for our morning walk to school, these two were chatting away, matching with their hands in their pockets.  
I love these little moments in time. 

I've learned many new things about living through the seasons in Virginia. One of them is that in mid November after more leaves have fallen on the ground than I have seen in my whole life, everyone rakes the leaves to the street and they are sucked up by a giant vacuum attached to a truck. So on our walk to school, we jumped in the piles! I always cringe a bit thinking about bugs in those piles but the girls always love it. 

This picture of Haddie was one of the last warm Fall days we had. Now we are in winter coats and I have to try and convince the girls to wear long sleeved shirts, pants, shoes and socks every day. 
It's not easy! And for those who say, "Just let them outside without a coat...they will change their minds in seconds..." that worked with Taryn, but not Haddie. She is SOOOOOO strong willed. That kid would freeze before putting on a jacket. I've tested this out many times. Oh man. So we had to establish family rules for Winter. So far, they are working most of the time. We'll see how the rest of Winter goes!

As part of my "homework" while making cakes and rolling out this business on my own, I stopped by my favorite bakery, "Bakeshop" to pick up some yummy treats. I love that place so much! Haddie was happy to help to test out the treats. 

The last day of soccer practice was so beautiful. It was still light outside at 5pm and the trees surrounding the park were colorful and gorgeous. 

Look at those fall colors! And that cutie being a goofball! 

Lately Haddie has been having lots of playdates while Taryn is away at school. If it's a time we don't host, I always realized how much I miss Haddie and having a buddy during the day. I've had a cute little girl by side for the past 5 1/2 years! I'm getting a glimpse of what my life will be like at home in just a few years when Haddie goes off to school. So I'm focusing on cakes and getting ready to fill my "free" time by baking delicious treats for others. 

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Our visit to the National Gallery of Art

The girls and I went to the National Gallery of Art two weeks ago and had such a great time. We met our friends Logan, Lynne, Carson and their grandma. The kids had the day off school so getting together was a must! 

I admit that it can be dating when thinking about taking your kids to an Art museum where there isn't a whole lot of "hands on" activities like the museums surrounding this one. But I love it. I love watching my girls learning about art, listening to what their favorite part of a particular painting is, and watching them take in the art in their own way. 
This time, Taryn had her arms folded for a majority of the time she was in front of an art piece with a pensive look on her face. That was the best for me. I felt like she was taking the time to look at the paintings and enjoying her time. 

The kind docent pointed out to us that no matter where you are in this room, the ice skater's foot would point towards you. The kids were blown away. The picture above shows Logan pacing back and forth (with the cutest astonished look on his face) watching the skater's shoe. 

Lynne and her two boys. She's such good mom. 

This is my favorite Haddie pose of the day. She had her arm behind her back and studied the army men and the big horse sculpted into this art work. My kids are understanding it- piece by piece- that art is beauty and up to many different interpretations. 

We tend to walk rather quickly through the museums, and although I wish I could spend hours at an Art museum, that's just not may phase of life right now. Tyson and I talk about how lovely it would be to go on a date to an Art Museum. We just have to find an art museum that stays open late enough for us to enjoy after work, or coordinate and day time babysitter for a little mid day date. 

This instillation has been one of my favorites for the past 4 years. As you stand on moving sidewalks (one going each direction) the lights above walk way change shape, turn off and on and move along with you. The kids always love this one and make their way up and down it several times. 

After about an hour of taking in art (and having a snack break) we let the kids run around on The National Mall together, crunching in the Fall leaves before I had to scram and try to pick up an NES system for Tyson (his Christmas present. ) Little did we know it was going to be impossible to get one. Oh well! 

We love our friends and the great times we have with them. Slowly but surely we are turning our kids into little cultured humans :)

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Our Sunday walk through Dumbarton Oaks Gardens

Those fall leaves were stunning!!!

On a beautiful Saturday morning two weeks ago, we all got dressed in our Sunday best, except for Taryn who was dressed in her soccer uniform. We made it to her game bright and early and feeling quite awkward in our really nice dress clothes next to all the other parents in sweat pants and exercise apparel. After Taryn's great game, we jumped in the car and drove down the beautiful George Washington Parkway (or GW pkwy for us locals) to get to a baptism. Taryn changed in the car from her soccer uniform to her Sunday dress clothes and then we all headed in for a beautiful baptism. 
After the baptism, we couldn't believe how perfect the weather was and how beautiful all the fall leaves were. So we pulled over to the River Farm along the Potomac River and explored with Tyson, it being his first time at the River Farm. We had the whole place to ourselves because right after we entered, they placed a big sign in front of the entrance saying, "Private Event Today. No visitors." Ha! I'm glad we got in before the sign. Or did they put up the sign when they saw us wandering around ???? :)

A close up of the girls and their funny "the Sun is in my eyes!" faces. 

The crunch of leaves underfoot is really amazing. .

This little bench is one that my girls love to sit on. It's made out of dirt and grass. All natural. Pretty cool if you ask me! A perfect place to blow bubbles. 

You can't beat this amazing view. 

After just loving everything about being outside that day, we decided to go to Dumbarton Oaks Garden and enjoy the breath taking gardens. In the fall, the gardens are free to visit and there are still flowers in bloom everywhere. We are always amazed that the fall/winter vegetation is still going strong. 
Taryn and Hadleigh spent a large amount of time rolling, jumping, cart wheeling, and running on this big lot of grass. Barefoot. These "city kids" don't see a lot of open grass so we let them run wild. 

Then off to explore the gardens with the girls for the first time. Tyson and I had visited 2 years ago (to the day!) on our Anniversary and it was still as magical as the first time. 

It felt as if some of the twists and turns of the garden were straight out of the Secret Garden. The girls were in love! 

These dreamy English gardens kept me amazed at it's beauty with every step. 

Then Taryn wanted to take pictures. And I was super impressed with her attention to detail. She took the above photo of Haddie (one of my favorites of her now) and the rest of the photos below. 

When Taryn asked Tyson and me to be her "models," she asked us to take a picture with us holding hands :) I actually really like that picture too. 

I love that these adventures as a family build so many great memories. We can take a normal Saturday and make it extraordinary while making memories to keep forever. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

October 31st- Halloween Night with the girlies

We started Halloween off with a parade at Taryn's school.  Taryn's "job" this week in class was line leader. It worked out perfectly for her because she got to lead her class in the parade with her teacher by her side. She loved it! Haddie & I walked along side the Kindergarten class and helped keep the kids going in the parade, then we stayed for "snack" and finished watching "The Great Pumpkin" movie with the class. 

Haddie loves going to visit Taryn at school and she was more than happy to join in the costume fun and put on her Rapunzel dress, which has been on repeat over here for the last month :)

We ate dinner and anxiously waited for it to get dark enough to trick or treat. The girls couldn't wait!!! 

Taking this picture was a miracle. The girls didn't want to stop moving and wanted to just go and trick or treat. Can you see Taryn's face? It says it all. "My mom is making me sit down and take a picture while all I want to do is get CANDY!" 
Oh the things we make our kids do. 

The candy haul was great and the girls got to pick 4 candies to eat. We combine the age of the girls and take the median number, and that's how much they can eat on Halloween night. It was just a quick idea we had this year and I think it will stick. We've gotten rid of a lot of candy- throwing away what the girls (and we) didn't want to eat, bringing extra candy to parties, and us helping the girls eat their collection, maybe while they were sleeping.... shh! 

I actually don't mind the candy being around. It's been a great motivator for the girls to finish their dinner, clean up toys, get them to leave a park etc... 
But it's been bad because I've been eating it. I was doing a Healthy Living Challenge for 11 weeks and loved it. It ended the day before Halloween so candy was now OK (in a sense- though eating it did make me feel a little sick) 
It's also a really great idea to plan your biannual dentist appointment the day after Halloween, like I did (on accident) so you don't eat a lot of candy. Though I probably should have eaten more, because what better way to get rid of all the sugar coating on your teeth than a visit to the dentist?!!??

It was a great Halloween this year. Taryn has declared she wants to be a dog for next year and I am determined to incorporate a family themed costume in somehow. It will be done (one of these years!)

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

My littlest sister gets married! Brooke & Cody forever!

In-N-Out. The first place we wanted to stop for when arriving on the West Coast. SOOOOOOOO good! 

Yay!!!! A wedding!!! And we survived the flights to Utah!

My youngest sister Brooke was the last Scott sibling to be married this past October. We traveled to Utah to be there for the sealing of Brooke and Cody in the new Provo City Center Temple. Tyson and I haven't spent much time in Utah together. Though it's where both of our extended families live and a few immediate family members, we haven't been in Utah for more than a few days (and sometimes less than 48 hours) in that state. It's a shame really, because we could really spent a week there every time. Seeing family, eating yummy foods, and exploring the beauty that is Utah. 

Sadly, this trip was no exception. We arrived Thursday afternoon and left Saturday late afternoon. But it was so worth it to see family, have the girls play with cousins, and party!

When we arrived in Provo, my Mom and Dad had planned for a party!!! They are so good with preparing for large group gatherings. Each family had their own room in the hotel (and they even booked rooms for Cody's immediate family too) then my parents secured one of the Presidential suites for our gathering locations. I love that! They planned to have everyone gathered together as much as possible so they needed the space to do so. 
Grandma had snacks and treats set out (mainly for the kiddos but who are we kidding, everyone loved it and ate it !), there were water bottles ready, cups, plates etc...to provide a mingling environment and a place to gather after each event. 

My mom and oldest brother, Cameron

My Mom and Dad could be found peeling oranges for everyone all throughout the quick wedding weekend. That's actually how I remember my Dad, always peeling oranges for everyone else.

We took the kids who had already arrived on that Thursday afternoon for a walk around the Provo City Center Temple. Our hotel was just a block away. Again- perfect planning by my parents. No juggling cars and people to get from one place to another during a busy wedding weekend. So so so smart when everyone is coming from out of town. 

The girls loved the temple grounds and being with cousins. The weather was perfect! We got really lucky. 

We enjoyed a wonderful "Rehearsal Dinner" on Thursday night before the wedding the next day. We introduced ourselves briefing, in a new fashion. I actually really liked it. My parents led the introductions, and I as a sibling had about 1 min to introduce my little family. It's a great way to know who's who for the next day's wedding. 
Everyone shared their love for Brooke in different ways. 
One way that had everyone crying was a touching song written by a few of my nieces, nephews, and sisters and sister-in-laws. Nataleigh and Etahn played the Ukelele's while a few nieces and nephews sang the words. They talked about the way Cody and Brooke met (Brooke cut the hair of Cody's roommate) and how Cody waited in the hospital waiting room while Brooke was in the ICU last October after her bad car accident. Such a sweet song put to the tune of "Lava" a Pixar short movie that came before "Inside Out."

Such a beautiful Temple!

My Dad and I. I don't have many pictures of me just with my parents, so if I find the opportunity, I take it and run with it! I love this one. I've found lots of similarities in our faces with this photo :)

Tyson or "Smitty" beckoning to Haddie, Berkleigh, my brother Tyson, my sister Brittany and her husband Seth. 

Two of my favorite people. 

Smitty, Tyson, and Seth

Nataleigh, Taryn, Berkleigh, Quincy, and Hadleigh

They're married!

The marriage of Brooke and Cody marked the last wedding for both families for Tyson and me for a long time. 
It will be a few years (probably 4 +) until we have a family member married. And that means moving onto nieces and nephews! 

Cody, Brooke and my parents. 

Oh Tyson, you keep me laughing :)

We missed Mackenzie (living in Singapore) and Ashleigh (living in Texas) so bad!

This is my favorite picture from the whole wedding that I have. My great siblings (missing Mackenzie and Ashleigh) with the addition of Cody now in the mix! So fun! 
I love my family. 

There was a quick wedding luncheon in-between the hustle and bustle. 
Boxed lunches (brilliant idea) made for a perfect lunch and then it was to set up.
Megan & David went to set up while their two youngest boys Jacob and Oliver were napping with Ethan (15 yrs old) watched them in their hotel room. Brittany & Seth didn't take their twins - so they set up too. That meant Smitty & I had our two kids and Tyson & Jen had their 3 kids, plus Nataleigh- we took to the park to let the kids play (and not be in the way of set up.)

Most of us changed our clothes so they would be pretty for pictures later and we stopped for Rockwell Ice Cream  while on our walk to the park down the street. 
Adventuring is always more fun when more family members are in the mix!

The Tysons

We all changed back into wedding clothes and headed to the Start Up Candy Factory for the reception. The lights that hung from above were so beautiful. And the candles and Megan brought along filled the tables so beautifully. I loved that the lanterns from my wedding were used again and the candles (various votive holders and glass vases) made such a beautiful ambiance. 

Cody wrote a song for Brooke. I didn't know how musically talented he was. That's him, second from left, with his band mates- like they actually play at weddings etc...

Brooke & my Dad for the Daddy/Daughter dance

Getting ready to throw the bouquet. 

The baker  (Valkyrie Cakes) delivered her cake and then it was my job to decorate it. I was so excited! I different aspect of my job of baking cakes- but still a major part of getting "the look" right for the bride. 

At the end of the wedding, Haddie crashed within a few seconds of being in Tyson's arms. This became Tyson's very important "wedding clean up " job. That nasty bruise on her arm is from tripping and falling on our stairs in Virginia. She was clutching a toy in each hand so she couldn't put her hands out to catch herself. Man- that girl- covered in scratches and bruises from all her falls. Poor girl :( Just this past week she fell at church outside our building, tumbling onto her chin (thankfully it didn't split) but it bruised up really well.

We were able to stop by and see Trevor, Whitney and Bailey on our way to the airport. Family is the best and I'm so glad that we got to play with them! Bruges & Waffles for the win! Seriously- those sandwiched were HUGE!!!!!! and their sweet waffles were delicious. Those fries- oh my goodness. They were AMAZING. Voted the best fries in Utah for good reason. Plus, if you have fantastic and unusually dipping sauces for the yummy fries....oh boy.... you got me! 
We played at Liberty Park for a bit so the girls could really stretch their legs before the LONG flights home. 

A great whirlwind wedding trip. We arrived home at midnight Saturday and we were up by 6:30am the next morning to make it to 8am church. Were we crazy??? Yes- but it was so worth it. We had the rest of the day to recover- plus- we were there for the Primary Program practice. 

It's always a party when family gathers together.