Friday, October 31, 2008

Halloween 2008

Isn't this the greatest Halloween House?   The fact that it offers "meat pies" is a nice added bonus.  I love Farmington.  It was eerily warm this Halloween -- I went out in short sleeves.  Keegan, however, was not so lucky . . .

"Now, can you tell me exactly 'what the heck' (a phrase he actually uses a lot these days) is going on here?"

Heaven forbid all of them should actually look and smile at me all at once.

Queen of the Nile, ready to conquer.  Happy Halloween everyone!

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Well, we started Halloween early this year, getting everyone in their costumes for a night at Red Butte Gardens. What could be more fun than wandering unfamiliar trails in the dark with your in-laws, trying to keep track of running cousins and kids? I tell you, around here, we really know how to live it up. Actually, it was quite fun, the kids had a good time.

Keegan reprised his role as mini-Chewbaca -- with Alden insisting on being Obi-Wan, what else could the little guy do?-- and he was the hit of the night. Didn't need to worry about losing him because you just had to follow the "oooohs" and "isn't that sooooo cute's!" and you knew he'd be in the middle of it.

Here are the kids, with Kate as Cleopatra, queen of the Egyptian Nile, listening to a Native American tell ghost stories by the fire in celebration of that fine European tradition, Halloween. And if that isn't cross-cultural enough for you, I don't know what to do. They don't call us the "cross-roads of the west" for nothin' y'know.

Hope everyone has a safe, happy and fun Halloween.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Gone, Gone, Gone! Really Gone . . .

Why, you might ask, is this song from Robert Plant and Alison Krauss running through my head and becoming the title of my first post in a month?  Could be because the album "Raising Sand" is really great -- but no.  Try traveling for business seven out of the last eight weeks.  Ouch. 

I must say though, that there are advantages to this.  Like the fact that all three children race to hug me when I walk in the door, shouting "Daddy!" with an enthusiasm that could light up the dark of a desert night. Or the fact that Keegan insists on grabbing my finger and leading me around the house for hours on end.  When I leave for work, he now says "NO DADDY! NO WORK!" and cries hard when I walk out the door.  If that doesn't make you appreciate life and family, few things will. 

Then there is the fact that professionally, I have never had more fun in my life.  I seriously love my work notwithstanding the travel. That said, it is clear that my wife does not.  So weekends have been filled with kids and honey dos.  As a consequence, I have failed you, dear reader (thanks for continuing to look Annie!).  Well, I will try a little repentance with this post, which I hope will be a longer one.   We have made good use of the few free weekends, so we have a few pics to post.  Here goes!


A few weeks back, we managed to drive Alpine loop right after a snowstorm, and catch one of the two weekends that actually had autumn color (we've learned that fall color is very brief in Utah!). Here are a few pics from the trip.

This aspen grove was absolutely magical.  I have never been surrounded by more glowing gold leaves in my life.  It was awesome.

The mountain top snow provided the perfect backdrop for all the color.  It was such a glorious afternoon. 

Here is the family at the top of the loop.  Aldie is wearing his mom's fleece top for pants because he managed to fall into the American Fork river on the way up, and totally soak his pants.  Not a good day for forgetting replacement clothes, but we managed!

Aren't they just the cutest boys?  Now if we could just get them to behave like they look . . .

I think gold and white must be the colors of heaven, and Aspen groves are a heaven on earth when fall rolls around.  

Alpine loop also has access to Stuart falls, which is a place I remember going with my paternal grandparents when I was about Kate's age.  I have distinct memories of this place from that day. Fun to be there again so many years later.

Doesn't this one look like an old woman in the shower?  Big nose, scrunchy face, shower cap.  I can't see it any other way now that I've thought of that.


Just last weekend, we took the kids out to Golden Spike National Historic Site, because I had never been there.  Here are the Kids at THE SPOT.

As Keegan sat for this picture, he said "Snake!" Sure enough, there he was, right on the Golden Spike tie. Glad he didn't have a rattle on his tail. 

Of course, there was no corralling the boys after that. They chased him down the track for quite a ways.

Here is Aldie standing on an original rail, perhaps the only one left (the rest went to construct weapons in World War II).

Turns out that the Spiral Jetty is only a short drive (over a rough dirt road) from Golden Spike.  It is a piece of installation art that was done in 1970 by Robert Smithson.  It was covered with water for almost three decades, but now is on a big salt flat.  This first picture was taken by Kate. Not bad, hey? 

The kids had a riot on the surrounding salt flat. They found this huge crystal in a pool in the flat.  Kate took this photo also, as her mom held it up.  Very evocative of the place, I think.

There is a lot of red algae on this arm of the lake, which has a reported 27% alkalinity.  It produces an otherworldly landscape.  

The Jetty itself is quite salt encrusted. 

Picture of the day belongs to Kath, though, who took the below with Kate's little point and shoot.  Keegan and I were out exploring the lake edge.  

Well, there you go, Annie (and anyone else who still looks once in a while). It is all I had time for tonight. I hope to be better this coming month, which should not be so crazy.