Memorial Day Weekend 2013

Before our long weekend, there were some fun things that happened along the way…

Monday my mom, aunt, cousin, and my mom’s friend Lori went out for dinner to celebrate Lori’s 50th birthday!  We went to Iggy’s – which really proves how much I love Lori…because my nickname for that joint is “Icky’s”.  We had such a good time, regardless.

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Wednesday my friends and I all met in Salt Lake for dinner.  We made an excuse to all get together before Whitney has her second baby in a few weeks.  The five of us dined at Frida Bistro [my first time].  It has been on my list of restaurants to try for a while – Kristina and I ordered something with cactus in it, it’s contemporary Mexican food, and the dish was surprisingly good!  We stayed over an hour past closing time.  I often go weeks, sometimes even months, without seeing my oldest friends and we always pick up right where we left off.  I adore all of them.

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Thursday was a unique work day.  My boss sent me to Santa Monica for a meeting with Westfield Corporate.  I must say – traveling with my boss is a “first class” experience.  He is preferred in just about everything.  Upgraded rental car:  check.  Sky Priority through security:  check.  Priority boarding:  check. I flew out separately earlier in the morning and as soon as Brandon arrived we drove out to their headquarters.

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It was a 40+ story building with crazy security.  We had to get visitor security passes and all that jazz.  Our meeting didn’t even last an hour, and we briefly toured their facilities [which were incredible – I want a full kitchen and lounge in our office building, ok??].  They even had fancy pod bathrooms so you didn’t have to use the restroom with someone in the next stall.  And then we were off…

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I decided I wanted to spend my last four hours at Santa Monica Pier.  The smell of the ocean, the sand in my toes, and some fresh seafood before heading back to LAX.

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Side Note:  I am a freak when it comes to the airport.  Zach and I have a system.  Call it what you will, but we have a system.  We show up at the airport with a certain amount of time, especially if we have to return a rental car.  My boss?  We dropped off our rental car 50 minutes before the flight was to take off.  If you’ve ever been to LAX you know that this is pretty much the most ludicrous thing you could possibly do.  Luckily, once again, that sly dog gets priority everything and we made it through security in 12 minutes.  12 freaking minutes.  I haven’t been through LAX security in under 1 hour…ever.  The real question is:  how do I get priority everything now?  Traveling with him was a dream.  As we were boarding [he flew first class, obviously] I noticed the guy in line next to us looked familiar.  Sure enough, it was Danny Masterson [he played Hyde on That 70’s Show] and he sat a row behind the boss man.  Apparently he owns a club in Park City and being the celebrity trollop that I am I informed my boss all about it.  It was a short trip – about 11 hours – but so nice to be out of the office for a change.  I don’t mind traveling for work one bit.

Also at work:  we hired another designer at E2.  Her name is Darrah and it was her birthday on Friday, so naturally we treated her to lunch.  We ordered two of the best desserts that the Dodo has to offer.  Please order their blueberry cream cheese pie

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Friday after work we left for Jackson, Wyoming to celebrate our holiday weekend.  We made the drive up through Idaho and then finally made our way into Wyoming.  We decided not to stay in the actual town of Jackson, but just outside of it in Teton Village.  We kicked off our summer t0-do list with some 4-wheeling.

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The next morning we woke up and drove into town to get a bite to eat at a local sub shop.

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After lunch we drove outside of town so we could go horseback riding.  We went on a guided ride at Horse Creek Ranch – one of my favorite activities of the whole weekend.  Zach picked Hawk to ride, and I got Levi and we were lead by our trusty guide, John.

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 We rode on a trail with a gorgeous view of the Tetons in the distance and gave Levi and Hawk a chance to snack.  We saw a little bit of wildlife – including a bald eagle’s nest.  It’s a good thing we didn’t go on a half-day ride, because my horse had a seriously tiny bladder.

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After our ride we made our way back to Jackson for our dinner reservation at the Snake River Grill.

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After dinner I made Zach stop and get some ice cream before we made our way over to the Teton County Fairgrounds.

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We had a date with the Jackson Rodeo.  I had been to several rodeos in the past, but none were quite like this one.  But first, Zach had to get his liquid cheese fix.  Zach’s family did concessions at the Ogden rodeo for years, and he loves to critique concession technique.  You will be pleased to know that the Jackson Rodeo had “excellent nachos”.

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Our favorite events were the bull riding, bareback riding, and of course…the rodeo royalty.  Not an event.  Just incredible.

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The next morning we had breakfast at the amazing Pearl Street Bagels.  Not only did we get warm bagels, but we made a new friend:  the sweetest sheep dog there ever was curled right up next to us in front of the restaurant.

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We spent the rest of our morning shopping around down town Jackson.  Cowboy hats, fringe ensembles, and lots of fur.

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Afterwards we made our way back over to the Teton County Fairgrounds for the Jackson fair activities.  There was knife and tomahawk throwing…

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incredible outerwear…

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and great company.  Meet Jedediah.

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After we had tried our hand at all the activities, and Zach had tried on every type of animal skin possible, we picked up some sandwiches to go from Backcountry Outfitters and drove back to Teton Village.  We decided to take the tram up to the top at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.

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It was a twelve minute ride to the top.  We walked up to the very peak and then made our way down the backside of the mountain – where we found an abandoned pallet.  So we had our picnic on that pallet.

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We walked around for a while, got some dirty looks for ducking under the restrictive orange ropes, and then made our way back down the mountain.

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We quickly changed and then drove just outside of Teton Village to our dinner reservation at Calico.

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That’s where I decided that my 26 days without Diet Coke deserved one   small   break.  I only had one, too.  It tasted pretty amazing.

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The restaurant was great:  delicious pizza and pasta while we watched the families play on the lawn beyond the patio.  We also enjoyed a giant piece of chocolate cake.

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We spent the rest of our evening at the hotel’s hot tub and fire pit.

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Our last morning in Jackson Zach had big plans.  He has been asking me to go fishing since the weather started warming up.  So before we left on Friday Zach geared up.  He got all of our supplies, including fishing poles, at Wal-Mart.  Friday morning we checked out of our hotel and drove north to Grand Teton National Park.

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I’ve been wanting to see Jenny Lake for some time and we thought we could possibly find a good fishing spot up that way.  We stopped at a little area called Moose to grab something to eat and then continued on.  When we arrived at Jenny Lake we walked around for a while and then hiked down to the water.

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We found a large rock and sat and watched the water for a while.

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We determined it was not great fishing conditions at Jenny Lake, so we drove a little farther north to Jackson Lake.  Jackson Lake is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been.  The water is so clear and the Tetons in the background really are incredible.  A local fishing guide told us to fish just below the dam, where the fish would be battling getting back into Jackson Lake.  Apparently we weren’t the only ones with the same plan.  We got our gear and hunkered down on the gravel shore.

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We fished for a while with absolutely no luck.  I had a couple of nibbles, but nothing actually stuck.  The gentlemen next to us, however, was getting really lucky.  I literally saw him catch five fish.  I attributed it to our lack of professional gear…not to our lack of skill.  Or patience.  We were very patient.  It was late afternoon and we decided to pack up our stuff and drive home.  So we didn’t catch a big one…but we got a good laugh about it.  It was the perfect way to end our trip.

While driving home we decided we are definitely going back to Jackson.  As a youngster my family made a lot of trips to Yellowstone and we only passed through Jackson, we never actually stayed there.  We even went on a river rafting trip down the Snake and went boating on Jackson Lake, but never stayed in the town of Jackson.  I am sad it took us this long.  Next time, those fish won’t be so lucky…

 

Weather + Wedded Bliss

The weather was so beautiful [and HOT] on Monday that a few of the guys from work and I went to Moochies for lunch and sat outside.  Moochies is my favorite:  I have never had their famous meatball sandwich, but the chicken sandy treats me well every time.

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Tuesday, after an appointment, I stopped by Bountiful Jr. High to watch my cousin Tyson kill it in his lacrosse game.  I sat by my uncle on the shady side of the field and helped him “keep time”.  Actually, I talked his ear off and he was distracted…but I still helped…a little?  Tyson scored two goals and my heart soared when I heard what his coach and teammates called him on the field:  “Ham”.  That was often my nickname in middle school/high school [or Hammer Time] – it brought me back to the old times.

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Later in the week Zach had an ice hockey game and we decided to make a night of it.  Mark and Jeanene joined us for dinner at Texas Roadhouse and then we all drove over to the Oval to watch him play.  I love having people to sit with at Zach’s games and loved chatting with them.

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It was his first ice hockey game of the season:  he scored a goal and had a killer assist.  The Sting [his team name: hence the black and yellow jerseys] didn’t win, but we all had so much fun watching him play!

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Friday Zach and I went to my friend Chris’ Wedding Dinner.  His sweet [wife now, no longer fiancé] Bre is perfect for him and we are so happy they found each other!  I got to design their wedding invitations, it was such a fun project to be a part of…

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It was so fun to see so many long-time friends.  I miss them all!

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After the wedding dinner we decided to catch a late flick.  We both voted to see 42.  Turns out everyone else at the theater was there to see Star Trek…except us.  Just us and a few hundred Trekkies…

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Saturday night was Chris and Bre’s wedding reception in Orem at the Sleepy Ridge golf course.  It was beautiful!  We got to visit with more of my friends and grubbed on delicious crepes.  I also tried my hand at baby wrangling.  Chris’ niece Eva is just about the most darling baby on the planet…

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We couldn’t stay too long because we had a birthday party, but the weather finally cleared up and it turned out to be the most beautiful night.

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Our Saturday ended with hot fudge sundaes and french fries.

Sunday a couple of girls in my ward and I sang in church.  Whenever I sing in sacrament I am basically a wreck all week before.  I literally make myself sick.  It’s pretty comical, actually.  After we sang our song, and after I sat down, I finally felt relief.  When sacrament was over and Zach and I started making our way to Sunday School I saw my whole family sitting in the back of the chapel waiting for us.  I had no idea they were coming.  To see them all there made my entire week.  I couldn’t help but cry.  I didn’t want them to leave and I wasn’t doing a good enough job convincing them to stay through Sunday School with us.  I love my family.  I wish they knew how much it meant to me to see them all there.  It was the perfect ending to my week.

This week?  We’re kicking off our summer to-do list.  Yes, I know…I apologize in advance.  If it gets annoying, which I am sure it will, just know that it won’t last too long.  Memorial Day can’t come soon enough!

Quality over Quantity

This week, Zach and I spent a lots of quality time together and with our families.

Monday my mom and I drove down to Lehi after work to help her friend.  She’s moving into a darling new home and she wanted to see what furniture would fit in her new place!  We measured all her existing furniture, had dinner at Kneaders, and then went over to her new place to see what would go where.  This place is perfect for her…and the house number is her birthday [5/18] – it was meant to be!

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Addiction is a funny thing.  You know how people that quit smoking usually have a “fix”?  Like my co-worker quit smoking years ago but now chews bubble gum excessively.  And a college friend of mine quit smoking his freshmen year and quickly became fixated on Dum Dums.  He went through bags and bags of them.  When I quit Diet Coke I found my fix within 24 hours.  Trader Joe’s milk chocolate covered peanut butter pretzel bites.  They are I N C R E D I B L E.  One addiction for another, I guess.  I think not sipping on something sweet all day makes me crave sweet things…all day.

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Since I finished our custom New York subway map, I decided to tackle a Paris metro map as well.  This one is a little more near and dear to our hearts.  I have decided I have accomplished my map collection with just the NY and Paris maps.  I’m done mapping for now.

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Tuesday was a fantastic work day for me.  I completed all the new Cobra Puma Golf fixtures for their 2014 roll-out.  I also [ironic timing] received a lovely package in the mail from the guys at CPG.  They sent a giant neon and pinstripe staff bag.  Everyone was dying laughing at me carrying it around the office.

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Tuesday after work my aunt texted me that my cousin Tyson had a lacrosse game at the park just across the street from our house.  I was on my way home from work with our dinner – Zach suggested Chinese take-out would be perfect for a rainy evening and I obliged.

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We gobbled down our food, read each other our fortunes, and then rushed over to the park to root for Tyson.  Turns out the game was postponed due to the weather – but it was great to catch up with my aunt and uncle for a bit!

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I spent Tuesday evening at another adult hip-hop class in Sandy – always a great time!

Wednesday night we met up with Zach’s family to celebrate an early Mothers’ Day.  We dined at Longhorn Steakhouse [Zach and I’s first time].  Mark chose the restaurant, obviously.  It was great to celebrate Jeanene and all the other mothers!  My sweet mother-in-law always includes me in the celebration even though I am not yet a mother.

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On the way home from O-Town Zach’s car got a flat tire.  Believe it or not [considering my driving record] this was my first experience with a flat tire.  I remember my dad went through a brief period where he either thought I was never going to get married or something awful was going to happen to my spouse…so he taught me all the basics.  How to patch walls, find a stud, hang a picture, check my oil, change a tire…and so forth.  So when it finally happened, Zach and I were a pretty good team!  We did have to Google how to release the spare tire of our make and model, but that was the worst of it.  I basically held the flashlight the whole time, let’s be honest…

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We didn’t get home until 11:30 pm and Zach had a roller hockey game.  He rushed off to make it down to WVC and I rewarded myself for all my hard work with an ice cream sandwich and a hot bath.  You forget how amazing ice cream sandwiches taste after going without one all winter.

Have you tried this pizza from Papa Murphy’s?  The thin crust Chicken Bacon Artichoke?  We paired this pizza with the NBA Playoffs this weekend up at Zach’s cabin.  It’s our new favorite.

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Saturday night we went out for a date.  Dinner at Market Street [Early Bird Special before 7:00 pm: because we are ancient now] and a movie at the Gateway.

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We did make a brief stop at Brookstone to get Zach a new nose hair trimmer.  I told you we were old.  That meant I got to sit in the massage chair – I was quite fond of the calf massager.  You see, it’s only acceptable to sit in the massage chairs if you are actually going to purchase something.  Right?

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We spent the rest of our night in Gatsby.  Such a beautiful film.  If you’ve read the book [it had been years since I had read it] you would remember the story line.  Not the most climactic story; but the filming, the sets, and the special effects were to die for.  My co-worker actually built a model and someone from the special effects team on Gatsby purchased it to be in some of the computer generated scenes of the film.  It was pretty exciting!

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Sunday after church [Mother’s Day], and before we went to my parents’ house for Sunday dinner, Zach and I spent a little quality time together ‘blasting fools’ in COD.  Just another feel-good activity in honor of Mother’s Day I guess.  It was his idea, obviously…quality time, remember?

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We dined at the Fotheringham household later that afternoon.  My Grandma and Grandpa even joined us.  I had to get a picture of all three of us together in honor of the holiday, ya know…

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After we grubbed we spent the rest of the evening outside in the back yard.

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I believe all the excitement started when my husband challenged me to jump over a plastic lawn chair.  He cleared it with ease.  Mine was not so glamorous considering I was wearing a skirt…

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Then the chair was out – and in its place:  the recycle bin.

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I don’t know how it evolved, but not long after the garbage can was a back-yard obstacle course.  Mostly conjured up by the seven-year-old Camron.  The tasks were:  1.  Do a cartwheel  2.  Jump over all the random stuff placed in the yard [he mostly collected items from the side of the house and garage]  3.  Walk across a sketchy wood pallet  4.  Leap over the tipped lawn chair  5.  Climb the monkey bars  6.  Slide down the slide  7.  Jump on the tramp

In honor of Mother’s Day – my mom and I did the obstacle course together, holding hands.  A team building exercise, if you will…

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Yes, my one stunning leap over the lawn chair – arms extended and all.  I realize it wasn’t very lady-like to do this in a skirt, but I couldn’t just sit by and watch everyone else have fun…

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Showing her true motherly instincts – there to catch me if I fell off the top of the monkey bars…and trying not to let my skirt flap open.  That happened anyway.  What can ya do?

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In typical family fashion, we managed to turn a regular night into something…different.

My family wouldn’t be the same without my mom.  She’s been the best mother to Blake and I – and I can’t wait to see her as a grandmother one day.  And a special thanks to my mother-in-law for raising my best friend.  Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful moms in my life!  I hope your day was special [not as in “special” like ours, like really special…in the normal way.]

Happy Mother’s Day!

Cinco de Random

I started my week off at the dentist.  Not my favorite activity at 7:00 am on a Monday morning, but this visit was rather pleasant.  Also, I had a gorgeous view on my walk over to his office.  And no cavities…so I can’t complain.

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This week Zach and I had a couple of stressful days at work…so Zach took it upon himself to make me dinner for Family Night while we watched the NBA Playoffs.

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Also, did I mention that Zach and I are on our neighborhood Welcoming Committee?  I find it hilarious that they asked us to be on the WC considering we still have sales people coming to our door asking if “our parents are home”.

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I had a fun and relaxing pedicure date with a friend in Taylorsville this week.  So great to catch up with you, Bre!

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I am currently 6 days sober…from Diet Coke.  I still have the virus in my system from my TDap and have continued to get headaches for the past week.  My coworker informed me that obscene amounts of caffeine doesn’t help with headaches.  So I decided to cut it out completely.

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I haven’t gone this long without a DC since 2010.  Day 4 was one of those “rough days” at work and I decided to give in and go buy a 12 pack from the nearby gas station.  Turns out they were sold out of canned DC.  It was a sign from heaven!  So I turned right back around and continued on my quest for a caffeine free lifestyle.  Six freaking days.

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Friday, Zach and I decided to drive up to O-Town for our date night.

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Sushi at Tona…

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…and bowling at Fat Cats.

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My bowling game definitely needs some work.

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After a few games of battling the pins, we tried our hand at some arcade games.

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Zach had a bout with two little girls…and lost.

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The whole night changed when Zach discovered the Connect 4 game.  Hendersons L O V E Connect 4.  And they are good at it.  All of them.

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With Zach’s skillz we basically killed it at Connect 4.

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And then Zach won the Jackpot.  Literally.  He was ecstatic.  He immediately took our tickets to the ticket counter and was debating on what to get as his prize…until he saw the jumbo green Kanye glasses.  He walked out of Fat Cats a whole foot taller.  And he didn’t take those glasses off the entire night.

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I even convinced Zach to stop at Coldstone on the way home.  A win – win for both of us!

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Saturday was our annual “garden party” at my Grandmother’s house for her Mothers’ Day gift.  Every year we work in her garden:  removing old bushes, planting new flowers, trimming her hedges, and so forth.  This year Zach and my dad installed pavers on the side of her house.

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My dad was his own shade of concrete by lunch time…

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The women folk did the lighter work.  Like keeping the kidlets from shoveling dirt on the grass and from eating snails…

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Later that evening Zach and I had plans to meet up with some of his siblings for Ironman 3.  We decided to dine at Outback Steakhouse beforehand in Layton.  It’s not a uncommon occurrence, but after dinner I was craving a milkshake.  Zach informed me he wasn’t buying me a milkshake until I named all 30 active NBA teams by location.  He was serious.  We rounded up a random pad of paper and pen and I went to work.  Even our waiter was rooting for me!  Luckily, sports is ALL Zach talks about these days…and it’s the NBA Playoffs.  So I happen to be pretty versed in the NBA right now.  I got 28 / 30.  I missed the Timberwolves and Wizards. 

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Luckily, our waiter convinced Zach that 28 was milkshake worthy…so we drove down to the Centerville Theater.   That is where we enjoyed our movie and I enjoyed my chocolate milkshake.  Ironman 3 was fantastic!  The best movie we’ve seen in months.   Note:  not EVERY Ryan Gossling movie is a treat.  I promise.

Sunday was our Stake Conference and afterwards we met up with my friends at Sugarhouse Park to celebrate Cinco de Mayo and Ocho de Mayo [Kristina’s Birthday!].  Her sweet husband planned the whole thing:  there was even a piñata!  Happy Birthday chica bonita, we love you!

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Afterwards we spent Sunday dinner at my parents’ house.  We had fajitas, rice, refried beans, and and my cousin made homemade fried ice cream.

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Probably my favorite Cinco de Mayo to date.