Monday, May 13, 2013

It Has Been 7 Years!

Saturday was our 7th anniversary. I can't believe how fast time has flown! We celebrated by spending the weekend downtown. We went back to the hotel where we spent our honeymoon. It was amazing! I had forgotten how beautiful and luxurious it was.
 The bedroom and sitting area
 this small room had a vanity and closet
 the bathroom.
The view from our room looked out on the courtyard. 

For dinner we went to the Roof. It is at the top of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building and has the most breathtaking view of temple square.

After dinner we walked around City Creek for a bit. We went to Deseret Book and got a couple of books we had been wanting to add to our collection;) I love the fountains that are there.

In the morning we had breakfast at the Garden Cafe in our hotel. After eating breakfast we decided to go and walk around temple square. We walked over to the conference center and decided to take a tour.  If you haven't taken a tour of the Conference Center you need to add it to your list of things to do. This building is so amazing and it was so much fun to learn more about it. As we were walking through the auditorium there was a man who was practicing for a organ recital. It was so powerful and I was in awe at this large empty room and the beautiful music. As we walked through we got to see the many works of art that are housed in this enormous building. Many of the pictures I have seen my entire life but I have never see the original works themselves. I am an art lover and love to get up close to painting and see the movement of the brushstrokes and texture of the paintings. At the end of the tour we got to go on top and walk around the gardens on the roof. It was the first time that I have ever done this and it was so COOL! I hope to go back and take this tour again, that is how much I enjoyed it.

We had a wonderful anniversary and what made it even better was that we got to spend time together. It was so realizing and we had the best time just walking around and talking. Mike is my best friend and I am so lucky to have such a wonderful man to spend eternity with. He loves me and takes such good care of me. I couldn't have picked a better person to spend eternity with.

Jon-O and Jessica are Hitched!

So a couple of weeks ago we went down to St. George for Mike's brother's wedding. This is such a hard time of year for both of us. I have been busy with end of year testing and getting everything ready to finish out the year and this is the beginning of Mike's busy season. Needless to say we were both looking forward to a few days away from the hustle and bustle. We were even more excited to see Mike's family. They all live far away (minus the newlyweds) and we only see them a few times a year.

We got to St. George late Tuesday night after everyone had already gone to sleep. On Wednesday morning we got to say hello to all of the fam. We haven't seen Mike's oldest brother, who lives in Arkansas, since the last family vacation 2 summers ago. It was so fun to see them. We also saw all of the other family who we haven't seen since last summer.

Later on the day we got to visit Zion's National Park. We didn't leave until later on in the day and so we only had a limited amount of time to spend there, especially with the little ones. These are some of the pictures that our sister-in-law Bri took. She is AMAZING! And if any of you live in Arkansas you need to look her up to take your pictures.

 We all crammed on one of the buses. We filled up almost the whole bus by ourselves.
 This was at Court of the Patriarchs. I love Andrew in this picture. It shows his personality perfectly.
 This was a little hike that we took near Court of the Patriarchs.
 Andrew was so excited to see a excited that he touched it. Pour guy had microscopic spines stuck in his hand and foot. Rob did a great job of getting all of the little prickers out. I think this picture is so sweet.
We went to the very top to the Narrows hike and walked a short way to the river. The kids were so excited and had a blast tossing rocks into the river. Of course it turned in to who could get the biggest rock and make the biggest splash. Mike and Grandpa had to help with some of them.
This is a picture that Mike took at Court of the Patriarchs.

On Thursday Mike, Rob and his kids, Jon, and I went to Las Vegas. We went initially to pick up Danny, Joe, and Aunt Judy. The fist stop we made was KGB Burger...of course. Last time we went to Vegas in February I was on a diet and so I didn't get a burger. I read the menu and saw the most delicious sounding burger called "The Thanksgiving Burger." was delicious as it sounds.
Yep...I know your jealous.

After we ate we went and looked at the ducks at the Flamingo, the gardens at the Belagio, and then went to MGM to look at the lions. We got to the MGM and the animal exhibit had been taken out...lame.

The gardens at the Belagio is my favorite site to go and see in Vegas. Here are some pictures of the gardens.

After Jon and Rob left with the kiddos and Mike and I went to dinner. I have been wanting to try Gordon Ramsey's new Pub and Grill there. It is safe to say that it was one of the most delectable dinners that I have ever had. Mike got lamb, which was grilled and had this smokey flavor from the grill that was amazing! I had chicken which had a layer of skin on top that was crispy and salty and was like a layer of potato chips on top of my chicken. The chicken was moist and was served on top of peas  and in a pool of confit sauce.
 The decor was so fun!
 Instead of a plain loaf of bread we were served three different kinds of soft pretzels and a small loaf of bread that had toasted pumpkin seeds on top. It was served with butter and a horseradish cheese sauce. I am not a huge fan of horseradish but this sauce was flavorful and creamy and the horseradish didn't overpower the flavor of the cheese it just enhanced it.
 We both ordered a farm fresh vegetable salad. It had all sorts of different vegetables that were sliced thinly and tossed in a refreshing lemon vinaigrette.
 We also ordered a side of asparagus cooked with tomatoes and lemon peal.

Friday morning we woke up and had family pictures. We went to Snow Canyon. The scenery was perfect. I think it is pretty cool that our last set of family pictures was taken at the beach and now we have some in red rock mountains.
 The entire family including our newest addition, Jessica.

 The last two pictures make me laugh...I love how Mike was captured mid-laugh.

 Two of the best parents on earth.

While the other families got their pictures taken Mike decided to take a little hike. He is that little white spec amid the mass of red rock. I was very impressed how far he got wearing his sunday shoes.

Later that day we were able to go to the temple as an entire family. It was such a special experience to be in such a holy place with so many people that I love.

Saturday was wedding day. It was so lovely and classy. Mom made dinner for everyone and it was so delicious! She worked so hard and it tuned out perfectly!

One of my favorite parts of the trip was just spending time with my cute nieces and nephews. Little Ollie was my little bud on this trip. He is so cute!
He would walk around and watch other people play games on their phones or leap pads and was just content to watch. I also found out that he is a pro at temple run!

It was such a wonderful week and I wish it could have been longer. I do have some wonderful memories that I can hold on to until the next time we can see our far away family.