Earlier this year I had planned to do a Triathlon over the summer. As the summer drew nearer it didn't look as though any of the Triathlons I had in mind were going to work out due to me being out of town or Jeramy being out of town. However, in July I realized that one of the triathlons I had wanted to do was on a different date than I originally was told. So, even though I really hadn't trained, three days before the race I decided to go for it and registered.

It ended up going great! I was pretty happy with my times and I honestly really enjoyed myself! I'm thinking next summer I might try and step it up and do an Olympic size Triathlon - which is about 2X longer than the one I did. I did a Sprint and the distances are about a 750m swim (1/2 mile), 20k bike (12.4 miles) and 5k run (3.1 miles). ( The one I did was a bit shorter on the swim.) An Olympic size is 1 mile swim, 40k bike, 10k run. It would definitely require some training!

The best part of the day was having my own little cheering section of 3. Last year none of them were there, so I was so happy that they made it. Poor Jeramy wasn't too familiar with my camera so wasn't able to get the shot of me crossing the finish line, but he was able to get a few pictures to help me remember the day.

Right after I finished the race. Hanging with my cheering section!
Leaving the transition area

I had to show off my favorite part -
my age sharpied on my calf! I know it's
hard to see but in case you are wondering,
it says 25!


This summer we made our annual trip to Canada to spend time with our families. We try and make it up there every summer for July 1st, Canada Day, and also the birthday of my hometown Raymond which is a REALLY big deal!!! July 1st has always been a big gathering event - everyone who has moved away returns to enjoy a few days or weeks with the family and friends that are still there. It is so much fun to see my little hometown of about 3,000 double in size for a few days. There is so much excitement and business in the otherwise sleepy little town. It is fun to go to the grocery store and run into old teachers, school mates or an old neighbor that you had nearly forgotten about.

I don't think I could live in Raymond again - once you leave and become accustomed to a big city and the amenities that it offers, it would be hard to go back -- but I absolutely love to go visit. The minute we drive into town I am nearly flooded with fond memories and warm feelings. It was such a wonderful opportunity to be raised there. Especially now that I have children, going back home is all the more important. I want them to experience some of the same things and traditions that I did when I was their age. I want them to gather candy at the parade and cheer for floats entitled "I Am a Child of God" and know most everybody in the parade. I want them to have a love of Waterton, rent the surreys and ride around town, then stop at Big Scoop on main street for ice cream. I want them to appreciate their many relatives they don't get to see too often and be able to spend an afternoon visiting and playing with them. When they are a little older I want them to stay up until 2am playing cards and games - claiming "THIS is the last game" for at least six games. These are the things I love and I hope to instill a love for in my children.

This year's trip was tons of fun and as usual went far too quickly! Here are some pictures of some of the highlights:

Fun at Waterton National Park:
Always our first stop as soon as we get to Waterton - the beautiful Cameron Falls.

We rented this crazy little bike, called a surrey, and rode all around the town. This is something I always did as a little girl and we hadn't done it for years - so this was top on my list of things to do in Waterton. You can tell Ella is not too happy when this picture was taken. She was really disappointed she had to sit in the front and didn't get to pedal. A few minutes into her ride, after we were sure Finn wasn't going to dive out the front, we let her sit in the middle with us. Finn had the best time of anybody - he just sat in the front by himself, giggling, waving and saying "hi" to everybody we saw.

Beautiful Cameron Lake. It is always breathtaking!

We always have to stop at "our rock" on our way back down from Cameron Lake. Jeramy and I had our picture taken on this rock when we were dating and ended up using it for our wedding announcement. Every year, we stop and take a picture.

A better picture of the view from our rock.

Ridge Park with Grandpa Leavitt:

It looks like Ella is having a miserable time :) (with uncle Jami and Skyla)
She had so much fun! I couldn't stop laughing just watching her. Finn was not about to let Ella have all the fun! Maybe it's more fun on the tube than in the water. Grandpa Leavitt to the rescue!

Afternoon in Lethbridge:
Ella with Grandpa Gary at his restaurant, Chopstix. Grandpa
affectionately refers to her as his best orange chicken customer.
I don't think he's exaggerating.

Apparantly the Asian-themed atmosphere inspired
Ella to bust out a few kung-fu moves.

Finn goofing around with Grandpa & Grandma Nelson

July 1st:

Sadly, I really didn't get too many pictures on the first. I was too busy catching up with everybody and kind of forget to take pictures.

O Canada! Ready for the parade.

I thought this float epitomized the Raymond Parade.
Notice the back of the float "advertising" Moroni's Quest (like youth Trek).
Pinata time! He could have cared less that there
was candy in there - he was just super excited that
someone gave him a stick that he was actually
supposed to be swinging recklessly around.
No help, please, Grandma!

Ella taking her turn at the Pinata (while my sister, Kim watches)

She's a little miffed she didn't break it open!

All the hard work on the pinata had a big payoff!


Busy Bloggers!

I'm still working on getting my blog caught-up but have been having too much fun catching up on everyone's posts. Originally I thought I had about 80 posts to catch up on, per my RSS reader. It was wrong - it must only be able to keep track of so many new posts then start dropping them off as ones I have read. My amazing friend Courtney, who has five young children including a set of triplets and did a cross-country move this summer, had about 40 posts alone. You amaze me, Courtney!

So thanks to everyone for having such a great, fun, summer and posting so many cute pictures and entries on your blogs. I'm having a great time living your fun moments with you and will get mine caught up soon enough!


Cover Baby

This summer Finn became a cover baby! He was on the May/June cover of Simple Scrapbooks. Rebecca Cooper, who took our family pictures last summer, is also a talented scrapbooker and is a contributer to the magazine. So she submitted the picture then let us know a few months back that he was going to be on the cover of the magazine. They use the name "Max" on the cover for layout purposes -- well, that or they think his name sucks --but it is our little Finn, with Jeramy's hands playing a supporting role :). I can't believe he ever used to be that little.