Monday, August 07, 2017

All About Annie

I have an entire folder on my desktop labelled Annika.  Whenever I come across crazy pictures that make me smile, I dump them there.  I hope they make you chuckle as well.

Meet Annie Mae: the coolest four year-old around.

Annika dresses up.

Future scientist.

Or perhaps an exotic dancer.

She insisted on wearing this ladybug costume to see the fireworks on the 4th of July.  Because why wouldn't she?

Doesn't everyone pull out their snow pants in the middle of summer?

She may be a monkey, but we love our little princess.

On any given day, she is likely to change into at least three different "swimsoups."  With so many wardrobe changes, it's easy to get turned around.

Occasionally her bottoms suffer the same fate.  But hey, cute shorts!

Annika and her long hair.

Annika and her crazy hair.

Annika loses that hair.

Annie loves scissors.  Inspired by her haircut, Annika has a current fascination with scissors.  Concerned about what she will cut inside the house, we regularly send her outside to cut the grass.

Annika also loves books.  The librarian in Papa Kay would be proud.

No better place to read.

Annika really loves her stuffed animal friends.  She sleeps with at least a dozen every night.

She throws them parties.

She feeds them Babybel cheese and swedish fish.

She even makes them all leashes so she can take them on walks.

But what Annika really really loves are bugs.  She spends hours outside playing with her "friends." If you ask her if our family has a pet, she will tell you all about our pet worm.  We had a pet roly poly, but it stopped moving after Annika gave it a bath.  Lately I've been trying very hard to convince her not to pet spiders.

Most importantly, after ever so much adventure, Annika sleeps.

Good night, sweet girl.  We love you!

Sunday, August 06, 2017

Utah Valley 2017: Jason Bolts for Boston!

On June 10th, Jason rocked the Utah Valley Marathon.  Now wait a second, I hear you saying, didn't he run the Ogden Marathon just a few weeks earlier?  Why yes!  Yes, he did.  Jason felt so strong after Ogden that he decided to give qualifying for Boston one more try.  He registered for Utah Valley at the last minute, snagging one of the few remaining spots by paying a bit more to be a VIP runner.

Being a VIP had a few perks.  Jason and I both got to attend a pre-race spaghetti dinner.  I was positively blown away by the number of people who had run dozens, if not hundreds, of marathons.  He was also guaranteed a spot on the last bus up the canyon, plus he got a snazzy hat.  The real perk, however, was that he didn't have to do much extra training since he was already in tip top shape from Ogden.

The kids and I got up at the crack of dawn so that we could cheer Jason along the course.  Here we are waiting at the top of University Avenue.  (Eli was our photographer.)

Celebrating like crazy as we see Jason coming.

Keeping pace with my hubby for a short while.

I left my phone in the car during the hustle to beat Jason to the finish line, so I don't have any pictures of his finish.  Not that I could have photographed anyway.  I was too busy sprinting alongside while hollering embarrassing comments about how my hubby was the sexiest guy on the course.

As always, the end was super tough, but Jason pushed through.  He ran an overall 7:10 pace, finishing in an amazing 3:07:49.  That was eleventh in his division and fiftieth overall.  Congratulations, Peanut Butter!  I'm so amazed!

As you can see, we were all so proud.

Best of all, this fantastic finishing time was a Boston Qualifier!  As proof, Jason got this really nifty running shirt.

Woot woot!

Now for the nitty gritty.  Even though Jason beat the Boston Qualifying standard of 3:10 by more than two minutes, he may or may not actually be able to secure a spot in the race.  It all depends on the number of people trying to register.  Either way, Jason ran magnificently.

Following Jason's finish, we took the kids to BYU to show them our favorite old haunts. Note Brooklyn snugging up to Cosmo.

Checking out the ducks at the art museum.

Purty rainbow!
What you can't see in this photo is Jason collapsed on the bench behind taking a well-deserved nap.

Congratulations again, Jason!  May your future be filled with many more endorphin-filled, lightning quick bolts.


Life chez les Wheelers is always a bit of a roller coaster ride.  Makes sense that we would head to Lagoon with Grandma Susie just a couple of days after Memorial Day camping.  As you can see, we had a great time!

Annika loved her first experience on BomBora.  I think we rode this coaster at least half a dozen times.  Even though he wasn't there, our trip to Lagoon was courtesy of Grandpa Charles and his dedicated service on the Hyde Park City Council.  As a thank you to council members, the Utah League of Cities and Towns subsidizes a few Lagoon days each year.

Annika was pretty cute on the little swings.

Not quite sure how she talked me into taking her on the teacups.

At least she had her big sisters to rescue her when she got dizzy.

Brooklyn, Talia, and Eli had the time of their lives riding Wicked, Rocket, Colossus, Spider, Bat, Cliffhanger, and who knows what else.  Rattlesnake Rapids is my personal favorite, with the peaceful Sky Ride running a close second.  The views are so beautiful!

Annika and I took a spin on the giant ferris wheel.

With Annika being the climbing daredevil that she is, it was admittedly nerve-wracking at the top.  Just grateful she didn't topple out!

Grandma Susie, thanks so much for the wonderful day!
Amusement parks are worlds of fun, but being with family is best of all.