Monday, July 31, 2006

Camping at Eleven-mile Reservoir

Our campsites, tents, vehicles, and hill the kids were climbing all day

Ashleigh sitting at the campfire

Sunset from our campsite the first night

We went camping for two nights at Eleven-mile reservoir this past weekend with four other families in our small group. We had three sites together at the end of a loop with just a huge hill behind the campsite with a short walk to the reservoir. Rob and I are definitely camper-type personalities and hope that Ashleigh will also enjoy it as she gets older. We both camped with our families and scouts growing up and we hope to pass that on to her.

We got there Friday afternoon, set up camp, and roasted hot dogs over the fire. The kids were getting worn out going up and down the hill back behind the campsites (not Ashleigh just yet as it was a steep hill and she's just not old enough). On Saturday, we had a huge breakfast together with pancakes, eggs, bacon, and sausage. Ashleigh had her first canoe ride that morning, but was very scared right after leaving shore and said 'All done boat!', so Stephanie and I had to turn the canoe around to drop her off on the shore. After lunch, Rob and I got to go for a hike together while Ashleigh napped back at camp and when we got back, Ashleigh got her first ride on a motorboat that someone in our group had rented to take the kids for rides.

Stephanie and I canoing with Ashleigh, Grace, and Joshua on Eleven-mile Reservoir

Rob on top of a rock on our hike along the shore

Crevasse between two rocks where we had some wild raspberries - yum!

Rob and I on our hike

Meanwhile back at camp...

On Sunday, after packing up camp, we took Ashleigh fishing for the first time. She got bored pretty quickly, but it was still fun to use the new fishing pole we bought for the trip. I hadn't been fishing since college, but it seemed more fun back in the drinking days. We didn't catch anything and it was really too windy to fish, but we did see some huge fish from the canoe the day before, so they're definitely out there.

Ashleigh helping Dad fish

Getting the pole ready for fishing

Beautiful sunsets both nights, no rain, and hot weather. Those sun shade canopies were a life saver, especially since there weren't any trees at our campsites. It was definitely hot (about 80), but not as hot as Denver was over the weekend. Too bad there's no swimming in that reservoir. But after canoeing over some gross water with lots of plants and algae and seeing a dead impaled fish with its tail sticking out of the water, our desires to swim in the water dropped ten-fold.

Ashleigh and Ashley listening to Paula's iPod in the shade

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

BBQ, Picnic, and Baptism (oh my!)

My family got together on Saturday for a BBQ at my sister's house in the Springs to celebrate the successful completion of finishing their basement. They also added new couches and a pool table once it was complete, turning their unfinished basement into an excellent gameroom.

(R-L) Me, Rob, Ashleigh, John, Jen, Mom, Steven, Carissa, and Dad

On Sunday, we went to church then we had a big church picnic and baptism celebration at Cherry Creek Reservoir. Rob had only been baptized in the Mormon church when he was 8, not really understanding what baptism was all about. We believe it's a profession of your faith and symbol of our relationship with Jesus Christ, similiar to wearing a wedding ring as a symbol of marriage. Baptism is not required for a Christian to be in heaven, but is an act of obedience in the Bible. Look at the thief on the cross next to Jesus. He believed Jesus is Lord just prior to his death and was promised paradise with Jesus. Rob has been a Christian since July of 2001, strangely about the same time we started dating - but that's a whole different story for another day. After the baptism, we had a big potluck/picnic/BBQ and played in the sand and in the reservoir with the other kids. Very fun! My mom also ended up coming as well.

Rob and Pastor Ray in Cherry Creek Reservoir

Rob getting baptized by Pastor Ray

Rob afterwards and Ashleigh playing in the sand

Me, Rob, and Ashleigh on the shore after the baptism

We also had Hanna over today while Amy did some planning at school and the girls played at the park and at our house. They play together so well and I had to take a picture of them as they were in similiar outfits.

Hanna and Ashleigh in their matching pink outfits

Ashleigh very excited and dancing

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Pool Time

These are some pictures I took last week from our back yard of Chase and Ashleigh playing in the new kiddie pool we bought. Like I said, it's been hot! We could only stay outside for about an hour before needing to go back inside because of the heat. On a side note... I can't believe that every year, you hear on the news that some infant died because their parents left them in the car on a hot day. It really comes down to common sense - you never leave your kid alone in the car in the first place, even if it is just a few minutes.

Ashleigh playing in the pool with her friend, Chase

Cool water drop effect

One of the rare times where Ashleigh is actually looking and smiling at the camera!

Ashleigh and Daddy playing with our old train set we had when we were kids

Summer Fun

You could say we've been busy, but in a good, fun way. Last Saturday, Rob and I went to Water World with some of my high school friends and had a blast. There's nothing quite like acting like a kid again, especially after having kids yourself and going without your own kid around that requires acting responsibly. My dad watched Ashleigh while we had our day of fun and Ashleigh nearly choked on a quarter, but threw it up and was fine after that. It was his first time watching her for the day since January and she's gotten more mobile and ambitious since then, so I'll cut him some slack on that. We're just greatful that we have family close by who are willing to babysit and can get away for the occasional date or fun day of skiing or swimming.

This week, Rob is in Holland, Michigan on a business trip, so it's Ashleigh and I holding down the fort. I used to travel about once/month for work when I was teaching training classes, but this is Rob's first business trip and our first time where he's away and I'm here for the week. Even though we miss him lots, Ashleigh and I have had a lot of fun. We went to a BBQ at a friends house where Ashleigh got a little crazy with the sidewalk chalk. We also went to the zoo on Tuesday and to the pool today. It's been hot, hot, hot for the last week! It was great having the 102 high temp at Water World, but now I'm beginning to tire of the heat.

Ashleigh and Ashley

Mom and Ashleigh all chalked up

War-Paint Baby

Joshua, Ashleigh, and Jacob coloring the sidewalk

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Weddings, Fourth of July, and various other stuff

I’ve been slacking off with blogging, but here are some pictures from our friends’ wedding a few weeks ago. We know Carrie and Ryan from Action, the young adult ministry in Golden that we were a part of before we got married. Ryan was also Rob’s quasi-roommate while we were dating when Rob would drive up from the Springs every weekend.

Last weekend, we moved Rob's sister into her new apartment and a few weeks ago, Rob and his dad moved his brother to Albequerque, NM and Ashleigh and I went to 'the beach' together (really a reservoir as the closest beach is 1,000 miles away in California). Here are a few pictures of Ashleigh playing at Aurora Reservoir, which is pretty close to our house.

Last week, I volunteered to teach 1st and 2nd graders at our church's vacation bible school and it completely wiped me out! About everyday, I came home, put Ashleigh down for a nap, then put myself down for a long nap as well. I don't know how teachers do it! I had the help of two other people with a class of 24 kids and it was only from 9:00-noon. I had lots of respect for teachers before, but Wow! pay those teachers more money because they definitely deserve it!

I didn’t take any pictures over the fourth of July weekend, but we had a good time nonetheless. Four-day weekends are wonderful (even for someone who stays at home because I get to see Rob everyday and that’s great!). We ended up spending the evening over at Matt and Sarah’s house doing traditional Fourth of July activities (swimming at their pool, having a BBQ, and watching fireworks from their 2nd story window during a rain storm). We’ve been getting a ton of rain here! Over four inches over three days, and if you know Colorado, it’s a desert here with around an inch a month. We were going to go camping

Rob’s job has taken quite the roller coaster ride lately! He found out he’s going to travel to Shanghai, China for two weeks out of the month for three months in a row to startup a new process. A week later, he found out his company is closing the Colorado office and we now have the option to move to Holland, MI with the company or to stay here in Colorado and begin the job search… (decisions, decisions).

Today, Amy and I took our kids to the Children’s Museum and had a blast! Ashleigh is quite the artist and their whole first floor is a dedicated toddler area, so she and Hanna had a great time. It's really enjoyable just watching them learn and looking at the world through a toddler's eyes. I'm blessed to be home with her and to be able to go to these places on off days, otherwise, it'd be a zoo on the weekend, I'm sure!