The girls loved swimming at the hotel. We tried to teach them to jump in and go under and keep their mouths closed. Alyssa not very good at keeping hers shut. They got better each time we swam. Before this vacation, they've never really enjoyed swimming. Queen Ava hasn't grown into her crown quite yet.
Blaine and my brothers, except for the one getting married. I didn't get any pictures of Micah, but I didn't want to mess up all the wedding photos. But he did marry a beautiful women with two beautiful daughters. I felt so happy for him and her. I know he'll be a great dad.
Grandma Brooks, Robin, Helen, Mom, and I at the wedding. We missed Holly. She wasn't able to come at the last minute.
These are Granddaddy's girls.
Blaine's cousin Candie watched our girls while we where at the wedding. I knew I didn't need to worry about them having fun at her house. They made cookies, crowns, and wands and watched Enchanted. They played until they where exhausted, but loved every minute of it.
The Penguins: The children loved watching the penguins. They could get right up close to the glass to see them swim, eat, and jump back on the rocks. So Cool! This aquarium was really nice because most of the exhibits had rocks or ledges the children could climb up to see from, so you didn't have to hold them up the whole time. There were also lots of hands on exhibits.
This is Ava and Corban crawling through the "coral reef". All the children loved this part.
We met my new sister-in-law and her daughters for the first time Tuesday evening. Ashlyn and Alyssa took up with Kensey right away. They were all dressed up and holding hands within 5 minutes of meeting each other. We also got to meet my nephew, Jace, for the first time; even though he's a year old. Ava and he played close to each other, but I wouldn't say with each other. I guess children at that age don't really play together yet.
Peeking in the back door of the temple.
Ashlyn, Alyssa, Kash, Ruby, and Ava feeling the water of the fountain.
We spent the night visiting and playing with our good friends who moved last August from Amarillo. It was great catching up with them. We went to the park and visited the temple grounds of the Quirrah Mountain Temple while Blaine and Brain went to play some golf.
This is Ava after our big day. I think she was playing like she was a puppy. She went and found this towel a worked really hard to arrange it under the table. She loves dogs!!!
Ava "jumping" to Daddy
Action jumping shots!!!
Ava caught on to the climbing right way. I'm glad we had as many adults as children because it took all of us to keep them from scrambling over drop off at the tops of the rocks. It was a lot of fun seeing them love being outdoors and enjoying simple things like climbing on rocks.
Ashlyn posed for all her pictures today. Silly Girl!
Ava pointed to this rock ledge and wanted her picture taken. As you can see from the picture below, she didn't want to sit on the bear.
That's us in the cave. My girls love caves. Ava even liked the cave when they turned all the lights out. My sister Helen went with us. She was glad to take it slow with the girls since she's about 5 months pregnant. We stayed at Helen's house and had a wonderful time together. Batman (her dog) probably needed a break by the time we left.
We had to wait about 30 minutes for our tour to start. I think it's a ploy to get everyone to spend more money in the gift shop. We stepped out of the gift shop and opted for the cheaper entertainment-quarter pony rides.
Went to "Cave of the Winds" after church on Sunday. Above was children's maze. It was a big wooden box that had a winding path through it where you went down slides and up stairs and the parents couldn't see their children most of the time but you could hear them. The first time through I heard a lot of fearful noises, after that it was all fun. Ashlyn helped one little boy through whose parents where trying to talk him through but it wasn't working, and I crawled in to help a 2 year old get back out. It was pretty tricking getting myself out. I'm glad she wasn't further in it.
Ashlyn loved the girl with the sparkly blue dress and the boy with the hair that curled up (that's the hero).
Ashlyn watched very intently, standing up the entire play.
Ava laughed every time the villain came on stage. He was a huge "Captain Hook" type pirate.
Aunt Helen attended the melodrama in Manitou Springs with us. I had gone to the melodrama when I was in High School and really enjoyed it, so we went as a family. I was kind of worried about of the girls would do, but they loved it. In fact, Alyssa keeps saying she wants to go back. After the play, the same characters come out and do short skits or songs. The "hero" sang a funny "love" song to different women in the audience, and I asked Alyssa if she wanted him to sing to her. She didn't reply, but then he came down the aisle by us, so I said, "Alyssa, he's going to sing to you." She hopped down underneath the table as quick as a wink and laid face down on the floor. Well, he saw her and came and sang to her while the spot light shined on her and everyone laughed. I thought she might get really upset when everyone laughed, but she got up as soon as the song ended and he left. We still got her to take a picture with him after the show. It was really funny.
Look how excited Ava was to be on top of Mount Capulin. or maybe just to be out of the car.
It was a cold, cloudy day to visit the Mount Capulin volcano, but it was a nice break to get out of the car. You can see the clouds behind Ashlyn and Alyssa (who were freezing). When I explained to Alyssa what a volcano, she said she wanted to go back to the highway. Then I had to convince her that this volcano was safe.
10/17/10 Ava loves baby dolls. Lately, she wraps them up and puts them to bed, then tells me, "Shhhh, baby sleeping, I momma."
10/6/10 I walked into the kitchen to find an half of a dollar on the counter. I asked Ashlyn and Alyssa why they cut the dollar in half. Alyssa said, "Ashlyn didn't have one, so I cut mine in half." They were so sweet, I just had to give them another dollar. I taped the cut one back together.
9/12/10 Ashlyn knows all of the primary program songs and loves to sing them. Today in primary I could hear her above the entire junior primary. I was at the back of the room and she was facing the front, in the front row. Her favorite song right now is "I Know that My Redeemer Lives." I was also happy to see Alyssa singing today at church, usually she saves her singing for at home.
9/5/10 Ava has started talking more. Here are a few of the things I have been able to understand: "Mooow" (No), "I done", "Baby" and "I mommy", "By" (said very loud, her voice carries like Ashlyn's), "Cheese", "DADdy", "Grandpa", "I poop" (meaning I want to sit on the toilet, she goes pee in the potty, but so far no poop)
8/1/10 Ava runs, squeels, and dances when she's excited to see you. She makes your feel so good.
7/28/10 Ashlyn and Alyssa were asking how much I loved them. I answered. Then they both said I love as much as the world (meaning as big as). They can be so sweet.
Ashlyn and Alyssa were doing cartwheels. Then I noticed Ava doing "cartwheels". She stands up with her arms straight above her head, then falls down on her side. Then she looks at us with a huge smile on her face, and claps.
Mom: Ava do you want...?
Ava: Sss. (That's yes)
Alyssa: I want some butella.
Ashlyn: Alyssa, it's not butella, it's nutella.
Alyssa: Can I have some butella?
Ava: We were at my mom's house, and Ava was trying to sit up on the toilet, so I took off her pants and diaper and sat her up there. I couldn't believe it, but she tried to go to the bathroom and three toots came out. She smiled like she was proud of herself.
Ashlyn: That's freakin' me out!
Mom Thinking: Where did she hear that?
Ava's Words: Eye, Dog, most other communcation is pointing at what she wants then hits herself in the chest
Mom: Do you want ...?
Ashlyn: Of course I do.
Alyssa: Mom, Mom, Mom, Mom...
Alyssa: I love you.