Monday, July 11, 2011

PJ and Courtney's Wedding

On Wednesday July 6 we headed up to the Bay Area so that we could attend PJ and Courtney's wedding and all of their festivities. It was a busy weekend but as always, we had the best time ever! I love any chance I get to be reunited with my friends!

On Thursday there was a BBQ for friends of the bride and groom at Hap Magee Park. We had burgers and got to all catch up with each other.
All of the girls at the BBQ.

Right after the BBQ, we headed to the Sellands' for a PJ Party. We all surprised Courtney by getting into our PJs and making her do the same! Jaicy made Courtney a cute shirt that had a picture of PJ and said "my new bedtime buddy." We all lounged on the floor, did each other's hair, made friendship bracelets, talked about PJ, drank root beer floats, and then watched a slideshow that I made for Courtney. It was a great night!

Friday morning we had a bridal shower brunch for Court. Jaicy made THE MOST DELICIOUS BREAKFAST, read us a letter from PJ to Courtney and then Courtney opened her presents. I loved having so much girl time!

This has nothing to do with the wedding, but that afternoon we went swimming at Kim's house. Kim is terrified of lizards of any kind and of course when we got in the pool we found a HUGE lizard/iguana/dinosaur. We had never seen anything like it in California and it could very possibly be a runaway pet. It was hilarious because even after Jeff took it out of the pool, it kept hanging out on the lawn nearby. Kim kept an eye on it the whole time to make sure it didn't attack. We are still wondering what the heck it was!

Saturday July 9th was the big day! Courtney and PJ had been waiting for this day since December and it certainly didn't disappoint! In the morning we went to the Oakland Temple for their sealing. PJ's grandpa was able to seal them and it was beautiful. Afterwards we took pictures at the temple and congratulated the newlyweds.

Jeff, Emily, Dustin, Katie, Kim, Ben and I went to High Tech Burrito to grab a quick lunch then went to help set up for the reception.

Their reception was at the old one room school house on the outskirts of Danville. Most of us hadn't been there since elementary school field trips.

My grandma even found this old picture of Courtney and I at the school house on our field trip in either 2nd or 3rd grade! Little did she know then that her wedding would be right there 15 years later!

The location was so beautiful and the O'Connors and Andersens put together an AMAZING reception with all of the cutest details. We set up all of the pennant flags, flowers, food tables, drink tables, dessert station, kids area, and made sure everything was perfect for when the bride and groom arrived. Everything looked flawless!

 Such a cute idea! A board to post when you met Courtney and PJ.
They even used a school bus as a shuttle to get people to the school house!

They had a beautiful ring ceremony conducted by the singles ward bishop.

 Then the fun began! We ate delicious food, watched them cut the cake and dance for the first time as husband and wife, and then we were on the dance floor for the rest of the night. Exactly how a wedding should be. It was perfect!
 YUM. Domenicos.

They even bought a real bird for this cute bird cage!
I am SO SO SO happy for Courtney and PJ. I am so glad they found each other and decided to get married. It worked out so perfectly and I know they will continue to be a perfect match for the rest of eternity!

4th of July

For the Fourth of July we headed up to Jeff's parent's house for the annual Thompson Fourth of July party. There was swimming. There was delicious food. There was fireworks. Perfect. The Fourth of July is easily my favorite holiday because I love any excuse for these backyards activities.
I made these sugar cookies and some red white and blue cupcakes for the party.

Since we were swimming and eating all day I only got pictures of the fireworks that night.
 Across the street people were shooting off amazing fire works. They must have spent a fortune because it seemed so professional! That was fine with us because we got to see a great show!
 Jeff and I had bought a bunch of fireworks while we were in Arizona and Adam bought even more. The boys had the time of their lives shooting them all off in the street.
 I stuck to the sparklers.

 Even Claire got to try a sparkler! She did so well and I think she enjoyed them! (She definitely didn't enjoy the big ones the boys were shooting off).
After all of our fireworks were gone, we went into the backyard to see what other shows were going on. The Thompson's backyard has a view of all of Santa Clarita and we could see fireworks going off in every direction. It was pretty cool!

We had a great day celebrating the beginning of this country with family and friends! 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Mesa, Arizona

As we drove further south, it got hotter. 100 degrees, I'm ok with. But when we got to Mesa, it was 115 and we could definitely feel a difference. It was hot. Thursday evening we got to David's cool, air conditioned house and settled in for the night.

Since we had a full extra day in Mesa than we had planned to, we called Jeff's friend Becky that he grew up with in Canyon Country. She has four little boys and we were excited to see them and catch up with Becky. We went swimming with them and it was a great afternoon!

That evening Alysse went through the temple. It was a great experience and so exciting for Alysse!

That night we got to see Jeff's friend Matt and his fiance Elyse. It was so fun to see them and we can't wait for their upcoming wedding.

On Saturday, we got up, had breakfast and headed back to the temple. This time we were there for Cody and Alysse's sealing. It was so special and we are so happy for them.
After a few pictures outside the temple, we had had enough of the heat and we all went to lunch. It was fun catching up with Cody, Alysse, the Allen family, Nichelle and Bishop McWhirter. We had a nice Mexican lunch and enjoyed celebrating this joyous occasion.

That afternoon there was yet another US mens soccer game on. We drove into Phoenix with David and some of his friends to a sports pub. It was a fun place to watch the game, but unfortunately they lost.

After the game, we met up with the Allens again for some late night frozen yogurt.

Sunday, Cody's grandma was kind enough to make us all some pancakes before we all headed to church.

Overall, it was such a great weekend and we loved all the time we got to spend with the newlyweds! And on top of being there for their special day, Jeff got to catch up with some friends.

We were sad for our trip to be over, but ready to go home and get back to a regular showering routine.

Slide Rock State Park

Once we left the Grand Canyon, we were headed for Mesa, Arizona. Jeff's friend David that we were staying with wasn't going to be off work until later in the day so we decided to take our time as we drove down.

We stopped in Flagstaff and had a nice lunch. Then we decided to take a minor detour and go to Sedona. The drive to Sedona was so pretty! We drove through a beautiful forest and we noticed lots of cool campgrounds along a river.

Then, just north of Sedona we saw a bunch of people pulling over to the side of the road and getting in swimsuits. It was 100 degrees outside so we were intrigued. We drove a little further to find a sign and parking lot for Slide Rock State Park. There were a lot of cars waiting to pay to get into the parking lot and we didn't want to have to pay. We turned around and found the last parking spot on the side of the road. We still weren't sure what Slide Rock State Park was, but if it included swimming we were fine with that! We put on our swimsuits and hiked down to where all the people were going.

Once we were able to see, we saw this:
There were tons of people swimming in the river and we couldn't wait to go check it out!

Well, the state park really stuck to its name. There were small parts of the river that had formed natural rock slides. There must have been hundreds of people enjoying the natural waterpark, so we joined in on the fun. The water was the perfect temperature and we had a blast sliding around. We would definitely recommend this park to anyone that is going to be in Arizona!

As we drove through Sedona after our refreshing swim, we wished that we had camped there one night instead of spending so much time at the Grand Canyon.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Grand Canyon National Park

At 4:00 in the morning on Tuesday June 20 Jeff and I were both awake in our tent in Zion National Park. Since we had to make the 5 hour drive to the Grand Canyon and make sure to get a campsite, we decided to get up and go. The drive was really pretty... according to Jeff. I slept the entire time, while Jeff took pictures and video of himself to stay awake. He even stopped at some cave dwellings and walked around by himself. He was very sad that I was not awake at 5 in the morning to enjoy this awesome drive with him!

Anyways, we got to the Grand Canyon very early and had no trouble at all getting a campsite. So much for leaving so early. Oh well!

We set up camp and went over to see the canyon. We were staying at Desert View Campground so we looked at the view down there before driving into Grand Canyon Village. We climbed the watch tower and took it all in.

 These are cool pictures that we took through the telescope in the watchtower.

We headed over to Grand Canyon Village where we walked around, took in the views and then enjoyed lunch followed by some ice cream. Then we rode in a shuttle to see a few more views.

We began to realize that there was nothing else for us to do besides go to various lookouts to take pictures. Sure, there were plenty of hikes we could go on but after all the hiking we did in Utah it didn't sound intriguing. All of the other things we wanted to do like a mule ride, rafting trip, and helicoptor ride were far too expensive.

So after taking A LOT of pictures at A LOT of viewpoints, we decided it was finally time to take a shower. It has never felt so good to be clean. We then headed back to camp, made dinner and relaxed. At sunset, we headed over to see the view again.

On Wednesday, we did a little looking around at the visitor's center then rented bikes. We rode the bikes to yet another viewpoint and took pictures. It was nice to be a little active again though.

Can you tell we were getting bored? I feel guilty saying it, but we were.

That afternoon we went into the city of Tusayan and watched the US soccer game. We then headed back, made dinner and decided that in the morning we would pack up and cut our trip to the Grand Canyon a day short.