Category: Utah (page 1 of 9)

Things to be Thankful For

Every year we have a special day to think back on what we are thankful for. I enjoy this. I wish I had that thankful attitude more often throughout the year.

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Best Friends, Blood and Balloons

It was Tuesday evening when I realized I had not blogged (last week). At that point, I figured I might as well wait until next week. Not that I lacked anything to blog about, actually quite the opposite. My dear friend Amy, from Oregon, was in town and we went camping too.


Friday night, David and I joined his family up American Fork Canyon for camping. This was Theo’s first camping experience. He loved all of it but the night time. We weren’t sure if he disliked the smoke, the vast openness or the darkness outside. He did great in the tent sleeping though.


Our campsite.


After picking up Amy, we drove straight to Silver Lake to show off a little bit of Utah’s canyons.


Me, Amy, and David, at Silver Lake.


David needed to change his camera’s film. Yes, he has started using his film camera again.


It was so refreshing to have Amy here in Utah, and I am so glad she extended her family trip a little to spend it with me.


Silver Lake is such a great spot to take family and friends. It offers such a variety, from fields to water, and forests to wildlife.





After Silver Lake, we headed downtown Salt Lake to eat at one of David’s and my favorite resturant, Squatters.




The day after Amy left, we headed back out to our spot, La Callie Trail.


Theo was so close to jumping in the water.






Down at the River on La Callie Trail.





We headed out to Bloods Lake on Saturday to enjoy a warm summer’s day. Except the day was cold, and the water was even colder.




Theo enjoyed playing with his dog friends.


We were also so proud of Theo for getting in the water on his own and swimming out to us in the lake!




While Theo was swimming, he got close to me and these are the marks he left behind.


After swimming we all relaxed on the hillside next to the lake. Sarah took a selfie with her dogs and Ashley in the background.


David enjoyed his hammock too.


Theo is so difficult to pose. He is so happy and excited he is always moving. That means he usually turns out in a black blur. These were the best photographs of him I could get.




My artistic compositions.




To get to Bloods Lake you hike down a very short but steep hill. That means to leave, you must hike up.


View from the top of Bloods Lake, looking East.



Sarah, Ashley, Bryce, and David.



Indie, Georgia, Bentley, and Theo.



After Bloods Lake, we met up with David’s family in Sandy for the Balloon Festival. Sadly, after this photo was taken, the wind picked up and thunderstorms rolled in, so they canceled the balloons.


Me and David, waiting for the balloons.


After the rain stopped the music started.


As if the weekend wasn’t already fun enough, we drove up Mill Creek Canyon at midnight to watch the meteor shower. I saw only one before the clouds rolled in and the view was blocked.


On Sunday, David and I enjoyed a relaxing day at home, which included a trip to our apartment’s pool.



NOTE: I will not be posting next week since David and I will be in Oregon for our Petersen Family Eclipse Trip! I’ll see you all the weekend after next. Love you.

Questival 2017

140 challenges, 2 states, 400+ miles, 5 people, 732 teams, 24 hours and 2 hours of sleep. This is Questival. David, his sister Beth and her husband Mike, our friend Royce, and I took part in what is best described as a scavenger hunt / challenge race put on by Cotopaxi. We had a blast! When it was all done, we finished in 97th place out of 732 teams! What a weekend. I caught up for my lack of sleep Sunday morning. Before we dive into only a small fraction of the photos from Questival, I need to tell you about Theo.

Theo spent most of Thursday throwing up. We got worried enough that we took him into the vet. They did some x-rays to see if he had something blocking his digestive track, but the results came back inconclusive due to food in his stomach. Theo fasted and we took him back in the next day to have the x-rays re-done. Turns out there was no blockage and he was just sick. Thank goodness.


Theo was very docile while he was sick.


We are glad he is ok and will soon be back to his normal, playful self.


We learned Theo does not like the vet center. But who can blame him for that.


To complete a challenge in Questival, you must upload pictures or videos to Cotopaxi’s app of the specific challenge you completed. Challenges ranged from hugging a stranger to hiking peaks.


As an opening challenge, Mike hugged a different team’s member.


David played another team in a game of water pong.


Beth played another team in corn hole.


At the event kickoff, we got invited on stage. This was our view of the Questival teams we would soon be competing against.


The SLC Sunbeams team on stage at Questival!


Take a picture enjoying a sunset.


Make a smore with a new ingredient, while camping. Ingredient is cinnamon gummy bears.


Draw a lama with charcoal from your fire. ALSO, in every photo or video you have to display your team “Totem” which is the “Do Good” flag. This prevent teams splitting up and cheating.


David chilling in front of the Utah state capital.


We woke at 4:30am to drive to Wendover, NV to continue our challenges after about 2 hours of sleep.


Enjoy a sunrise.


Create a distorted perspective photo at the Salt Flats.


Take a picture in front of this mural.


We found this cool, but secret Mexican restaurant in the back alley of a city block. It looks so pretty.


Hike a trail not on the Cotopaxi list.


Hiking to Bloods Lake. You can also see the backpacks we got, on David’s back, from participating in Questival.


Jump in the water fully clothed.


Our Questival Team, the SLC Sunbeams.


Sunday morning… ok afternoon, David made us a breakfast fit for champions.


David posing downtown.



I hope you all had a happy and safe 4th of July! We spent the morning at a community parade, the afternoon hiking, and the evening shooting fireworks. What more can a 4th of July be?

David got sick right after the 4th and spent most of the week in bed. Luckily, tonight he is feeling much better. The sickness gave us a quiet and relaxing weekend where we had time to finish some projects around the house.


The Granite Community Parade.


The carnival after the parade was a little… childish, but we still made the most of it. David, Theo, Me, Beth, Kristin, and Ryan.


Me and David.


In the blazing heat of the afternoon, most of David’s family went to hike Willow Heights in Big Cottonwood Canyon. I joined them.


I had seen images of the lake at the end and I was excited.


Aynsley posing in a field of flowers.


The trail is in the shade, I was told.


It’s an easy hike, I was told.


The trail was not in the shade.


The hike was not easy.



As with any hike though, it was so worth the steep climb and heat.


Isn’t that view something!



After surveying the lake and its surroundings, we headed back down.


Me and David in our “ridiculous” 4th of July shirts.


I love all the birch trees on the hike.




A panoramic view of Willow Heights Lake.


Once the sun began to set, we enjoyed some fireworks at the Swains.


Theo did so well in the beginning. Once the aerial fireworks started he got spooked and sat inside the house, watching through the windows.



Swain’s always invite friends and family to enjoy the fireworks with them.


I joined a website call Influencer. I get sent a box of free products to test and review. This was my first box. Pretty cool huh?


David and I bought this fruit bowl a while back at the DI (thrift shop). We bought some flowers at Hobby Lobby and arranged them in the finished bowl. I really love how it turned out.


The bowl was an ugly red-orange when we bought it. We spray painted it with a stone paint and I absolutely love how it turned out.


These are the art pieces I started a few weeks ago, and finished at Boys Art Night with our friends. They are inspired from a fern leaf.


We also hung David’s art from the Boys Art Night. The three blue pieces are some art David made a few months ago too.

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