Thursday, June 30, 2005

Happy Birthday to ME!

Wow! If a girl ever needs a pick-me-up, I suggest she have a birthday! My roommates definately won the 'awesome roommie award' today for helping me have a fantastic relaxing day.

I started out the day by waking up to the sound of my Mother's ring tone blasting through my room at 9:30, and the first rendition of the Happy Birthday song. The first of 23, a good magical number for the day. Anyway, after I got up, I wandered around the house and saw that Celeste had decorated the living room with streamers and a banner on the wall, and then in the kitchen Kristina was making me breakfast! Pancakes and hashbrowns, yum yum! After the excellent b-fast, I got ready for the day, Johnny and I ran a few errands, and then we went to the Temple. Afterward I watched the newly released Beyond The Sea, and I really liked it. I think I'll be investing in the soundtrack soon enough . . . Kevin Spacey sung all the songs, and he sounded so authentic! It was awesome!

During the movie a knock, knock, knockin came on the door, and what was it? FLOWERS! Laurel Ann, my Mother-like friend sent me two dozen roses! It was the first time I'd ever received flowers. I was always the one delivering them, it's nice to know what it feels like to be the one on the other side of the door! Well after being lazy and eventually finishing the movie I went to Institute, which is always excellent, and then the PARTY!!

Check out the card Scott gave me! But I must say, Ian's was much more valuble . . . I must use it wisely!

The roommie's planned a birthday party for me, at which attended friends ranging from middle and high school to some I met last weekend. Here is Josh and Ambie, along with Heather with Trista, her daughter and Dougie her hubby.

Here's Mel and Mark.

Blake, Ian, and Stacie.

Carrie and her Mom (whos in town from New Hampshire).

Matt and Johnny!

Celeste and Lance.

What is a party without Scott? Really?

We had some great grub, including cookies and ice cream, some AWESOME eight layer dip that Matt made, and Johnny whipped up Mother's famous recipe of brownies. No submitting to birthday cake this year! Now I'm just working on coming down from that sugar high!

Sunday, June 26, 2005

awwwwhhhh, how CUTE!

Here is yet another picture of my nieces. Isabelle and Karyssa. Aren't they just precious?

Damien, the Daredevil

This afternoon my family and I were at my parent's house having a family dinner. Mom made Hawaiian Haystacks, and it was fantastic! We all stuffed ourselves, and then like always my siblings and I shoot the breeze with our parents around the dining table, while the grandkids go outside and play. My nephews are typical boys. They'll run and jump and climb alll over everything and anything they can get thier hands on. Occastionally from inside we'll hear screaming, but we'll pause, make sure it's not a hurt scream, and go on with our conversation. This afternoon, while chatting I looked out the back window, and saw my nephew up 10 feet in the air . . .

Here is Damien at the top of my parent's basketball hoop. He'd climbed up the backdrop my dad put up, and decided to be the "king of the hoop". Look at John following his older cousins example.

"Hey Aunt Tristie" he says.

This picture really shows in perspective how high he is. Keep in mind that David, Damien's dad is 6'4". Yeah, Damien the Daredevil!

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Saturday with the family!

After getting up at 5:00 am and driving back to O-town from Island Park, I went further south to the SLC valley to chill with the family.

Today my neice, Isabelle was baptized. Here she is with her Daddy, my brother Patrick. The dress she is wearing my Mother made last year for Karyssa, my other neices blessing.

Father Kaiser preformed the Baptism, he is a funny ol' guy, and kept us laughing throughout the ceremony.

Here is my brother's family, with the Godparents, and Father Kaiser.

And Judy with our bundle of joy!

Here is Karyssa with her dress on. Its funny that it still fits her, over a year later. I guess patterns for babies are always a little big!

And here once again is John, my nephew. He and his brother Nick love these coon skin caps. They wear them everywhere! They call them their wigs because of the tail in the back. My brother Pat tells me to forget punishment with these boys, threaten to take away the 'wigs', and they will be angels!

Island Park!

The last time I was in Island Park, Idaho, I was driving through on my way home from Yellowstone National Park a year ago. I had no idea I'd ever actually spend time there. Thankfully enough though, my Singles Ward is always up for an adventure! I spent the last two days re-acquainting myself with nature!

We stayed on Bill's Island cabins. While driving into town once, we spotted these moose! There were two babies and a Momma!

West Yellowstone

On Thursday we drove up to Island Park, and after a slight delay waiting for Scott, we got there safe and sound. That afternoon we floated down the river from Mack's Inn to Kettle Pot and froze our patooshkies off! It was relaxing, but there was definately too much wind (causing us to be cold) to really enjoy the beauty fully. I have a pretty good tolerence for the cold, but I was so cold my hands and arms were turning blue!

After we got out of the frigid mountain runoff, and dinner, we went into West Yellowstone
to see the "town". This is where I captured this fantastic sunset. Notice the dark clouds though . . . moments later a hail storm began, which continued into hard rain, and LOTS of lightning! It was a beautiful storm!

While in town there wasn't much to do but shop. But check out Dustin's fine prize! Can you believe how long the brim is on that hat!!

Laura also found quite a catch! This floppy eared beanie is soo cute, and looks great on her!

The Wildlife of Yellowstone

Friday we went into Yellowstone National Park and the plan was to swim in the Firehole River for a couple of hours. Well, the river was supposvely closed, but that didn't stop me. I still dove in, and swam around. It was fantastic! Ryan, and Scott were the only others that swam, and Laura dipped her lower half in.

After the sadness at Firehole, we went to Old Faithful to watch the most reliable geyser blow! Beforehand though, we noticed a Bison meandering it's way through the area.

I couldn't believe we could get so close!

This picture was taken with no zoom. It was awesome. Notice the parking lot in the backround. The Bison apparently come and go where they please!

Old Faithful

Thar' She Blows!

Bubble Bubble

After Old Faithful a group of people and I decided to go for a hike to Lone Star Geyser. On our way, I noticed something steaming alongside the trail . . .

Up on the hill I saw this . . . but at first didn't dare go too close because the gound around these thermal areas are very thin . . . I didn't want to end up knee deep in boiling water!

I found this unmarked area with this steaming vent. It was so weird, it was just a hole in the ground that steam was rising out of.

Right next to the vent was this thistle. I thought it was beautiful, but didn't dare touch it. "take only pictures, leave only footprints"

After awhile Ian came up and joined me in my exploration, and he went up and above the "hole on the hill", so I decided it was okay for me to also. This little hot pot was spewing water out of a hole in the ground, and it had created this awesome pool of clear boiling water!

Aahhhhh, The Outdoors

The hike to Lone Star was awesome. We followed a river pretty much the whole way there, and definately had a great time. I wish we'd "tubed" down this river

The color of these trees was so awesome looking at them from across the river. They were reddish in the sunlights glow.

This meadow reminded me of a scene out of the Disney classic, Bambi. "MEADOW!!"

These crooked trees were one of my favorite parts of the hike. Had I been thinking about it I would have taken this picture in black and white mode, becasue of how beautiful it was. The knarled, fallen over trees that had been bleached and petrified by the sun. It was so beautiful!

Then there was this bird. I was walking and saw it standing there on a log. I have no idea what kind of foul it is, but it sure tried to fool me by standing completely still. I got really close to it too! Any ideas of what it is?

Lone Star Geyser

After the two and a half mile "hike" we arrived at Yellowstone's second most reliable hot spot, Lone Star Geyser. It erupts about every three hours, and it was much more spectacular than Old Faithful! Laura and I arrived at the geyser a few minutes after it erupted, (a small spout basically) and figured since we missed it, we may as well go swimming. A few minutes later however, when we were in the Firehole river again, and not near the camera it erupted again, and it was HUGE!! We saw it shooting water twice as high as the trees in the area! I wish I had a picture . . . at least I have the memory!

Just south of Lone Star, there was a huge field full of all these little hot pots!

They were all bubbling and spewing water.

The photos definately don't do them justice, but they are so cool!

Kepler Cascades

This is Kepler Cascades. A series of waterfalls just off the highway in between Old Faithful and the West Tumb of Yellowstone Lake. The hike to Lone Star Geyser is also right by the Cascades. These first three pictures are looking East up the Firehole River.

This is the upper part of the river . . .

The largest waterfall in the sequence . . .

And this is below the others. This last picture is looking West, down the river.

One, Two, Three, Four!

Come on baby, keep on counting! Five, Six, Seven, Times! Eight, Nine, Ten, Eleven, I'm just gonna keep on counting! Un*til you are MINE!

After our adventures in Yellowstone came to an end, we came back into West Yellowstone to grab some grub, and have a Testimony meeting at the local Chapel. After the powerful meeting some of us decided to stay and have a party in the parking lot. It was awesome!

Lacey taught us a line dance that she and some friends had made up years ago.

Shake it baby, shake it!

It was a great ending to a fabulous road trip! That and a short nights sleep!

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Gutless Squishing

Sometimes a roommie deserves a good squish or two! Celeste was the victim tonight!