Monday, June 30, 2008

Gifts from China...

Kimberly went to China for her BYU ballroom dance team. They got to dance all over and even got to dance at a pre-olympic event.

A really funny thing happened at that event. She was telling us all how the people in China were so nice and accomadating. They really love their country, and wanted the Americans to have a great time and love it as well. When they got to the Olympic venue for their performance, it had been raining all day. There was lots of lightning and thunder. The venue was outdoors and the stage was carpeted. They were praying really hard that the rain would stop so that they could perform. The Chinese people were all waiting with such anticipation under their little umbrellas (with big smiles on thier faces, Kimberly said).

The rain finally stpped and the organizers got the stage swept off. They started dancing. One of their numbers, the Lindy Hop, has a boy in a janitor's outfit in the beginning. He comes out all by himself with a big broom and is sweeping while whistling. Then, he is supposed to take off the suit (he has his dance clothes on underneath). Everyone then joins him and they dance the Lindy Hop. Well, a random Chinese man, from the audience, saw him sweeping the stage. He jumped out of the audience and grabbed the broom from him and started sweeping himself! The organizers of the event knew that it was part of the show and got him off pretty quickly. Isn't that just a great example of how they cared for their visitors?

.Here are some pictures I took of her last ballroom concert at BYU. They are super blurry, I was testing out my new camera...but you get the idea of how wonderful she is.

We had the Acerson kids over for dinner on Sunday. Kimberly was so sweet to bring us things from China.

She gave Andrew a tie (that was made in China that said "Italian Design" on it, covered all the bases).

Harrison and Nathan got some Chinese candy and gorgeous shells from the Olympic sailing venue in China.

Janessa got some beautiful pearls.

I got a necklace that was so had these orange pearly beads that were such a unique shape.

Rick got an olympic t-shirt. It was super cool...on the back they have created a Chinese character for each olympic event.

We are really going to miss Kimberly when she goes on her mission in two weeks. We are so proud of her, and we are so happy our kids have her to look up to. She is an amzing example to all of us and we love her very much (and not just because she brings us presents from China).

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Ingrid Michaelson concert...

I know what it must look like, that I go from concert to concert. But, really, I promise I don't. I have sometimes gone years without attending one. It's just funny that this is my 3rd concert that I'm blogging about...and I have another one next week! Actually, it shouldn't really count, as it is Miley Cyrus...coming to the Stadium of Fire, and our entire family is going (I really mean entire). And, for that matter, Jordan Sparks shouldn't count either...both of those are more for Janessa than me!

My friend Stephanie is a very bad example; whenever she's around we always do crazy things. She moved to California last year so it's pretty well calmed down. However, she is visiting for a month and we always do crazy things when she is in town. This weekend we went to Ingrid Michaelson's concert. She is one of our favorite singers (check out her songs on my playlist...they are probably playing right now).

The thing is, when we get-together, we can't just simply go to a concert. There has to be other activities, lots and lots of food, and sometimes even a night away. So, here's how our fun day went...

We met at a fun place in Pleasant Grove for pedicures. We all got red toe nails...not planned to match, I guess trying to be patriotic for the fun upcoming week. While there, we were asking Brian (who works there and is Vietnamese) where there is good Vietnamese food. Stephanie has been raving for quite sometime about a soup called Pho (pronounced "fu"). He told us about a great place in Salt Lake. We were thrilled since we were already going there for the concert. So, we went straight there and had some of the best food ever.

Then we headed over to the venue. The Avalon in Salt Lake City could use some renovations. We had to stand outside in the 100 degree weather for about an hour before they would open the doors (they were running late). We were dying from the heat! When we arrived inside, it was almost as air conditioning in such an old theater, I guess.

This is what we looked like, with sweat dripping off of us. Why did we even fix our hair and make-up? We are with a cute girl we met in line. Her name was Daniela...or Gabriella...or Vanessa. Actually, we thought she looked so much like Gabriella from High School Musical (the actresses name is Vanessa). And, for the rest of the night we were so confused. She was from Orem and her friend ended up not coming with her, so she was alone. We let her hang out with us all night and we had such a blast! She did make us feel really old, but that's ok.

The opening act was another of our favorite singers (a happy surprise for us). His name is Greg Laswell and he is really great. We first saw him in person at Sundance. He has some great songs and a fun personality. He does a cover song, "Girls Just Want to Have Fun." It is one of Stephanie's when she ran into him before the concert, she asked him to sing it. He did sing it during his performance, so all was well.

Then, came Ingrid. I actually had heard a couple of Ingrid's songs before we saw her perform at Sundance. I liked them, but then when I saw her perform, I loved them! She is adorable. So sweet and down-to-earth. And, the best part is that she is absolutely hilarious! She makes up crazy songs all the time and tells such funny stories. She even makes fun of her own songs. She is a joy to watch and her music is charming.

She has such a great personality! Just take a look at the expressions in her many faces...

She sang all of our favorite songs, and a lot of new ones that she is working on. It was the perfect concert.

We had fantastic seats up front, but we occasionally went to the back to enjoy the one fan in the building.

At the end of the night, Ingrid asked Greg and his band to join them. They played a few songs and sounded wonderful together.

Then... just the two of them sang, "Can't Help Falling in Love"...and looked into each other's eyes the entire time! It was the sweetest, most romantic thing ever. I'm not sure if they are really in love, but if they aren't, they are fantastic actors!

After the concert, we went and ate AGAIN. But, this time it was all for Daniella/Gabriella/Vanessa. She was hungry and we couldn't send her on that long drive home hungry. And, we did eat our first dinner around 4:00 p.m. So, we went out to Ziggy's and pigged out (again). After dinner, we said goodbye to our new friend and told her to drive safely home. We were definitely more like mothers than her BFFs.

The rest of the night was interesting to say the least. It started as we arrived at the hotel. Tracey went to see if the outside pool was still opened. While she was out of the car we decided to leave her (a tradition). She jumped on top of the car as we drove into the parking garage.

And, I will just say that the night ended with another incredible concert. This one was in the Little America Hotel at 1:30 a.m. Stephanie was playing the grand piano (the one used in the grand ballroom) and I was singing a moving original number. All I have to say, is I'm sure the security at the hotel enjoyed very much watching three 30-something mothers being silly in the middle of the night. I'm sure they wondered if there was alcohol involved...but it was just the pure bliss of enjoying a girl's night out without the kids.

We were back with home with our families within 20 hours of leaving them. But, our little break from being moms felt like an eternity. Isn't it so true? Girl's just want to have fun.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Father & Sons' camp out...

Rick took Andrew, Harrison & Nathan on Father & Sons' camp out this weekend. They had a great time. They went up to the Andrus' cabin in Fairview Canyon. There were zip lines, 4-wheelers (thanks Dave), and lots of s'mores. I didn't hear many other details than that...Rick will have to start a blog if he wants anything more said than that, because I was not invited!

Janessa & I went to Carolyn's house that night for dinner. She invited us over for homemade pasta, it was wonderful. Then Stephanie & Addison invited us over to play "Ticket to Ride" with them. It was a fun board game and on my list to buy (don't let me forget). Janessa and I always love Father & Sons' camp outs...they are the greatest!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

BYU football camp...

Harrison got to go to BYU football camp this week. He went with his friend Ben and had a great time. I was carpooling with Ben's mom and I forgot to take pictures on the day I drove. So, the last day, I sent Harrison with a point and shoot camera. I told him to take a couple of pictures. These are some that he took.

I am going to refrain from showing you one of the 50 videos that he took. Unfortunately, I sat through a few of them and now I am so sick to my stomach that I really should go and take some Dramamine. They are super cute and funny, but I wouldn't want to be responsible for making anyone sick.

They got to play in the IPF (Indoor Practice Field) which is so amazing.
Doesn't he look just so TOUGH?

Bronco Mendenhall came and gave them a "pep" talk.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Jordin Sparks concert...

I decided at the last minute to get tickets for Janessa and I to the Jordan Sparks concert at the Scera Shell in Orem. I'm so glad we did it...we had a blast! We tagged along with my friend Stephanie and her daughter Sadie. They were having a little 16th birthday celebration for Sadie. Holley and her daughter Cheyenne came, as well as Molly (one of my favorite Laurels). It seemed almost like a Young Women's activity. I guess it really was, since they were all sluffing that night (sorry to any leaders reading this).

What a fun 16th Birthday for Sadie!

Stephanie and I went early to sit in line so that we could get good seats. The darling girls next to us were starting to think that we didn't have any daughters. We were both trying to read our books...but the music from the radio station was blaring in front of us, and the girls said it wasn't cool to read while waiting for a concert. Our girls should really love us, since we got them AWESOME seats!

While waiting for the concert to start, the girls played games. Another girl from our ward, Ashley, and a friend came to join us. Molly also provided entertainment by standing on her head (we were so hoping she would tumble down the hill, but she was much too talented).

Once the concert started, the girls had such a party! Most of the audience stood up and danced. The funniest thing was that these people behind us kept yelling, "SIT DOWN!" Finally Holley turned around and said, "It's a concert...chill!" I thought that was so hilarious, people trying to yell at 200 teenagers to sit down. Needless to say, they weren't successful.

I think I finally figured out how to post a video! My teenagers will be so proud of me (especially since they didn't show me how).

Jordin was very good. She has an amazing voice. She also seems like such a nice girl. She invited an audience member to join her on stage to sing one of her songs with her. The girl was amazing! I was super glad I didn't raise my hand!

Here's how nice of a mom I am. I had a terrible headache after the concert, mostly due to my allergies. Janessa wanted to try and get an autograph afterwards. I stood back for almost 30 minutes watching Janessa stand in the front row of at least 100 people. Unfortunately, Jordin came out and got right in the vehicle and they drove off. She did get out of the sun roof though, and waved and said "goodbye" to everyone. Janessa yelled, "I love you Jordin!" and she yelled, "I love you too!" back. I think that was good enough for Janessa.

You can see Janessa in the very front of the crowd. If anyone would have gotten an autograph, it would have most definitely been her! She was so disappointed afterwards, she said that she wanted to get the program autographed for Sadie for her birthday. So sweet, always thinking of others.

**I forgot to mention one important thing...Janessa took all of the close-up pictures of Jordin. She wanted to go to the front row with my camera, and me being the nice mom I am, I let her. She did a great job and was mad at me that I didn't give proper credit on the family blog.**