Friday, August 28, 2009

Pirate Island

On Saturday, my sister Summer invited us to this fun new place called Pirate Island. Some friends of hers in her ward own it and it just opened last week. It was lots of FUN. It's a restaurant with a game/activity center. And it is all decked out like a pirate ship. I love themed things - and this goes all out! If you haven't been - you have to check it out!

Aubrey hangin' with Daddy & Uncle Elliot.

Loved the ball toss game. I think it was reminiscent of throwing rocks at the lake.

Summer & Steve, Esther & Bryan, Elliot & Katie and us Buell's all went together.

Playing with Uncle Elliot.

Brooke with her Aunt Summer.

Spreading the hugs to Aunt Esther too.

Having fun on the slides.

Bought a candy bracelet with her tickets. Thought it was just about the best thing ever. A bracelet you can eat!

Aubrey put her shades on Brooke. I thought she looked so adorable!

Aubrey is still just so in love with her sister.

Two peas in a pod! Can you even believe how much Brooke and Daddy look alike?!

I think my lil' one has started teething. It seems so early. I thought it was cute how she liked to nibble on her fingers. Then a friend saw it and asked if she was teething. It totally took me off guard. She's me little newborn still! Oh wait, she's almost 5 months - I guess she is probably teething!

My sleeping beauty!

Daddy found a used sandbox online for super cheap. Aubrey was just in heaven!

She was really proud of the hand print that she made. (Look above the shovel.) She's trying to take her sandals off so that she can make footprints too.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Our Butterflies Have Taken Flight

We let our butterflies fly away this morning. The whole life cycle was really one of the coolest things I've ever gotten to watch. Way to go Jeff on an awesome Christmas present for me and Aubrey!

Here is Aubrey & I opening up our Butterfly Kit from Jeff. (Can you even believe how young Aubrey looks?) I was so excited. Unbeknownst to Jeff, I have heard of these and have wanted to have one for a long time.

You can get the caterpillars in the winter, but if you do than you have to keep them in the pavilion for their whole life cycle. That seemed kind of cruel to me. And now that I think about it, I don't think I would have liked seeing the butterflies die. Anyway, we decided to wait until Spring. We were kind of busy with Brooke then, so we ended up getting them in the Summer instead.

We mailed away our coupon and received two containers, each containing five caterpillars and food for them to eat. It was amazing to see them almost double in size on a daily basis. The ones in the picture are in the middle of their caterpillar stage.

The morning we left for camping all of the caterpillars had turned to chrysalides - so we could put them in their new home.

Aubrey was really excited for them to move into their home. Here she is checking out the chrysalides.

The next Sunday morning our first butterfly emerged. We were all so excited. We didn't get to see that one or the next one emerge. But, the third one we actually watched it come out. It was soooo neat. It's the only one that we caught in the act. But, I am glad that we at least got to see one.

Aubrey watching her first butterfly!

All Sunday she played out the whole process. She would crawl around on the blanket, pretending to be a caterpillar. Then Jeff would roll her up in the blanket to be a chrysallis. Then she would emerge out of the blanket and run around the house exclaiming, "I'm a butterfly, I'm a butterfly." What a fun little game daddy made up for her!

Here's a bunch of our butterflies in their pavilion. The first couple of days they didn't fly around much. They crawled around a little - but their wings remained shut most of the time. But then they started to get more active and fly around with each other. I was glad to see them fly around more.

This morning we decided that it was time to let them go. A couple of them were seeming a bit restless and looked like they were trying to get out.

For some reason Aubrey has been convinced that she was going to hold one of the butterflies. She has been talking about it since we got the caterpillars. So, before we let them go we had her put her hand in the pavilion to see if she could at least touch one. Almost immediately after she put her hand in, one landed on her finger. It was so exciting! A little blessing for my little girl! I was too busy being excited to snap a picture fast enough. After, her success, Jeff and I tried too, but we were not so lucky.

Here is Jeff trying to catch a butterfly.

Then Aubrey wanted to try again.

She got close. It didn't land on her finger, but it flew around her hand and she felt the flapping wings on her fingers.

Here she is excited that she felt the butterfly on her hand.

Here are our butterflies ready to fly away!

One taking flight.

Three of them were flying around the yard for a while. Aubrey was chasing them saying, "My butterflies, my butterflies!"

One landed in our garden and hung out for a while. As soon as we got too close it flew away. The pamphlet said that we might see them around for the next few days. We'll have to hang out in the yard and see if we can get a glimpse of any of them.

Brooke just enjoying being outside with her family! She of course didn't have a clue what was going on. Although, one day when the butterflies were being active I sat her next to the pavilion and she watched for a while.

What a fun few weeks we had watching our butterflies! If anyone is interested the company is Or you can buy them at Funfinity. I was looking around at the website and they have ladybugs you can watch too. Now I really want those!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Camping Trip #3

We woke up Tuesday morning pretty cold and tired. We decided that instead of camping another night, as planned, we would play all day and after dinner and a camp fire, we would head home. It really is the best of both worlds. We got to spend the day in the great outdoors, have camp food and a fire under the stars, a nice quiet ride home with both girls fast asleep, and a lovely nights rest in our warm home and beds.

As soon as Aubrey left the tent Tuesday morning, she was back at her rock collecting.

After a full night of Daddy fretting and checking on her, this is what Brooke looked like in the morning. I'm pretty sure that she was the most warm out of all of us. (Maybe a little overly warm!)

Aubrey discovered a new favorite drink, Hot chocolate!

I thought that our tent looked so cozy amongst the trees.

The trees at our campsite where also quite pretty.

Once Brooke woke up, Aubrey thought she'd entertain her with a few stories. What a good big sis!

Then we were off to Potter's Pond for a little fishing. Unfortunately, we had a little technical difficulty with the fishing pole, so we didn't get to fish very long. It was a bummer, cause Jeff was really looking forward to fishing, and I thought Aubrey would enjoy seeing a fish up close and personal. However, Aubrey was thrilled with the vast amount of rocks at the pond and very much enjoyed throwing them in the water. She also learned how to throw instead of just drop them in. She really could have stayed all day tossing rocks into the pond. We were only able to get her away with the promise of going back to the lake after lunch for some more sand castle making.

More fun with rocks!

Loving the splash the rocks make when they hit the water.

Despite our best efforts at keeping Brooke out of the sun at the pond - she managed to get pretty pink cheeks. With a sun hat that big, I don't know how it happened.

After the pond we went back to camp for lunch and a nap. Well at least Daddy and Brooke napped. I had an Aubrey climbing all over me - so we did not get a nap. Then we went back to the lake.

Look at our cute little beach bum.

Here's her sad little pink cheeks :(

Cute lil' tongue.

Our sand molds and castles were still there from the day before and Aubrey went right back to putting rocks in the sand castle.

Brooke just happy to be alive and with her fam!

Playing with the mud is also a lot of fun.

Listening to the waves crash along the shore just lulled Brooke right to sleep.

Daddy putting Aubrey's shoe back on after she got stuck in the mud!

We headed back to camp to start packing and get dinner ready.

Aubrey immediately went back to her rock picking. I'm not sure how many days of camping it would have taken before she would have tired of this. Funny kid.

Then after we packed and roasted hot dogs on the camp fire - we headed home. It was about 9:30 before we left, so we really did get a full day of camping fun.

As we were leaving we saw this poor, dirty little girl. Even though she was filthy from head to foot, we decided to take her home with us!
Wednesday morning we all got nice hot baths. OH how heavenly. Since, wed. was supposed to be part of our camping vacation, we decided to continue our fun at the swim park. Aubrey had been dying to take daddy down the water slides. And that she did - over and over and over again. Daddy didn't mind though, because he thought the water slides were pretty fun too!
Overall, we had a real fun time on our little camping vacation. Even though it wasn't as long as planned, we thought it was a successful camping trip. Aubrey loved pretty much every minute of it. And I think Brooke did too! Jeff and I had a really good time as well - if only we could have had someone cook and clean for us! But, I guess that is all part of the camping experience!