Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Memphis BBQ

I know this is an extremely flattering photo of both parties, but I think it is cute. Leoni wanted to sit on the edge of the car after a family dinner at Memphis Barbeque and Nor joined her.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Wedding Finery

Because we didn't get a picture of our whole family is our attire at Tyler's wedding, we reenacted for a photo. Of course, Leoni decided the model pout was appropriate for every family photo.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Brunch at Green Valley Ranch

Just a lazy morning brunch at the Original Pancake House at Green Valley Ranch. We also took a little walk around the stores, mostly focusing on the walking.

Leoni enjoyed her banana pancakes

Had to snap a photo of this local playing the slots
Notice the grocery bags and note that this was about 10:30am

Leoni testing out bedding at Anthropologie

Leoni had to walk on her own and lead the way

Stopping to see what was under the grate?

Monday, August 23, 2010

Visit to Hoover Dam

We took an afternoon to drive out to the Hoover Dam and see the almost completed Colorado River Bridge portion of the Hoover Dam Bypass (opened as of October 19, 2010). It is supposed to relieve traffic going across Hoover Dam. Great idea, but a little scary to contemplate when you see how high up this thing is. I am glad they have walls up on the bridge because I would otherwise never drive over it. It also will keep the gawkers from stopping mid-bridge for a photo shoot.

We decided to have a photoshoot of our own (on a very bright sunny day),
but in a designated photo area
Check out how low the water level is by seeing the discoloration on the rocks

Sunday, August 22, 2010

A Close Encounter

Though not of the 3rd kind, Leoni enjoyed following and petting the tortoises in Las Vegas. We have 4 desert tortoises, Sheldon & Shelonda (the adults) and two babies that are actually 5 years old and not really named. Yes, they are the offspring, though we don't know who the parents are. We used to have another female, Flip, who died from the same action as her namesake, and we had another male, Dodge, who moved on to another home. So, it is anyone's guess.

This is Sheldon, the largest and oldest, who we have had for 25 years. It is pretty much the only animal she enjoys getting close enough to touch.

A picture of the family

We tried to some pictures of all three of us this summer since we had people around to take the picture. Not super exciting, but I love Leoni's face in this one.

Monday, August 9, 2010


Leoni loved her first visit to the BYU Creamery. Let's just say dad didn't get all his ice cream to himself.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Picnic in Heber

We were invited to have a picnic in Heber atLeanne's, a former co-worker, home. Another co-worker, Jenna, and her cute daughter joined us for a nice afternoon. We had delicious BBQ's chicken, courtesy of Leanne's husband, Ashley, as well as a lot of tasty veggies, fruit, rolls, etc. I really ate well that day.

It was a fun setting for little people to discover dogs, cats, goats, and the horse, Heli...unless you are scared of the horse
Much happier standing near and just observing
Loving the ride with Leanne on the four-wheeler
Liked it so much, she tried to figure out how to take it out on her own

Visiting Aunts

We were able to spend a day north of Provo, visiting family. We had lunch with my aunt Tracy & my cousin Emery, then we headed further north to visit Travis' aunt Donna who recently relocated from California.

Leoni enjoyed the food and company

Then she went for a spin with Aunt Donna

She was happy trying to see how fast they could get that chair going

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Small Town Parades and a Chicken?

We decided to drive out to the Young Living Lavender Farms in Mona, UT one afternoon. We had participated in the Lavender Run/Walk shortly after Leoni was born and loved the beautiful fields of lavender and other herbs. Much to our dismay, they had just harvested, so we didn't get to see the expanses of purple against the mountains.

On our way back to Springville, we were stopped by the police in Santaquin. They were holding up traffic for a parade.
A children's parade
that took approximately 3 1/2 minutes

And it included a big red chicken?
Evidently, I am the only one who doesn't recognize "Red Robin"

He's Back

Travis came back from Peru bearing gifts. He brought me a drum and a beautiful cotton handmade shirt as well as this chocolate, which made me laugh.

He brought Leoni this hat, which she loved.

Machu Picchu

I have always wanted to visit Machu Picchu. About 10 years ago, my parents were Mission President in Bolivia. I went down to visit them for a month and planned on taking a "small" side trip to Peru to see Machu Picchu (hereafter referred to as MP). At the time, my dad said I didn't have the money for something like that - which was true - and crushed my dream. I felt it was such a waste of being relatively close and not being able to take advantage of the situation.

With my job at Qatar University, I am able to request funding to attend or present at various conferences throughout the world. I found a couple conferences that I could submit a proposal to, and then got accepted to and received funding for Peru TESOL. I managed to schedule my travels so that I could do a whirlwind trip to MP.

This was in the middle of the summer break, so what would Lindsay & Leoni do while I was away? I wanted them to come with me, but that just wasn't a practical option this time. So much of our summer was dedicated to balancing time with both of our families, it was difficult to figure out when we could visit Lindsay's grandpa in California or her aunt and cousin in Utah (since time in Utah was mostly dedicated to my family). We decided that this would be a good time for Grandpa Tubbs and Aunt TTT.

Shortly before my flight, L&L flew down to California. Lindsay's mom drove down and those three generations of ladies spent a few days with Doug (the fourth generation of that picture) in/around Fullerton. Then, L&L flew back up to Utah and spent the weekend with TTT and Emery.

In the meantime, I arrived in Cusco, Peru, on a Tuesday, and spent the day wandering around the city. I left early the next morning to take the only means of motorized transportation from Cusco to MP: about a 4-hour train. Some people backpack a few days along the Incan Trail to get there. The train goes all the way to a little town - Aguas Calientes - at the river's edge below MP. However, I got off the train about an hour early to hike along the Incan Trail the rest of the way, with my guide.

I hiked up (about 500m) and along the mountain for about 8 hours (only expecting a couple hours) visiting a few different Incan sites until we (my guide & I) arrived at Intipunku (the Sun Gate) overlooking MP. By that time, it was approaching sunset. We descended down to a bus which drove down a series of switchbacks to Aguas Calientes to stay the night.

The next morning, we got on a bus to go back up to MP with my guide. We went all over the site to see and learn about the incredible work of the Incas. There is one section that you can hike up to to overlook MP, but this involved getting up extra early to wait in line to get a permit. I enjoyed sleeping longer.

After a few hours at MP, my guide returned to Cusco and I wandered around Aguas Calientes until my departure back to Cusco on the train. I wandered around Cusco a little the next morning and then left for Arequipa that afternoon. My conference was great, especially because of some the people I met there.

I felt a little guilty going without Lindsay, but she reassured me by saying that we may never have the opportunity to go as a couple or family and I should take the opportunity. After visiting, I am very determined to make sure that Lindsay also has the opportunity to go some day.

Overlooking Machu Picchu from Intipunku

Monday, August 2, 2010

Sandy Aquarium

We had the chance to not only visit the Aquarium in Sandy, UT but visit with friends. Angela, Erica and I worked on a life consuming project (all while Angela was pregnant). Erica & I were working for efy and Angela was a functional consultant. Little did we know when we were assigned to the project that in the midst of "trials" we would become good friends. It was fun to be able to get together with our little people.

Erica, Lindsay, & Angela (and the little people)

Snapping turtles

The only picture I got of Leoni in front of the penguins before she was banished. They put up ropes for a presentation. Of course, she could walk right under them, but the aquarium people didn't like that. We had to move down the way since she couldn't see why she wasn't able to be close up.