Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Girls just wanna have fun!

So now that I'm all alone and have a ton of time on my hands...it's catch-up time. Here's what the girls and I did while they were here:

Every Sunday there is this AWESOME African Market just 10 minutes up the road. We took the girls there and they were in heaven. It is so fun! The necklaces, the wood work, the rock figurines, the paintings...it's all so great.

Happy Birthday to Nelson Mandela! What a great man. He was the anti-apartheid activist who spent 27 years in jail for it. He was also South Africa's first black president in 1994. He turned 91 and there was a big party at his house. We were 20 feet from him! We were so close to talking to security about letting us meet him... His house:

Monday, we went to Princess Alice adoption home and I introduced them to my favorite little baby, Precious. They loved feeding and playing with the babies:

We also went to the new Harry Potter movie and loved it. We all weren't a fan of all the things they added that weren't in the book...no need to do that. But it was fun!

Tuesday, I took the girls to the Rhino Lion Park that we love. We got to pet Eddie, the Cheetah:

Haylie isn't going to be happy that I chose this picture. But I LOVE it:

And Sarah is going to be even more mad...we all loved this picture because she looks like she's strangling the lion! It's okay Sarah, we know you're really not:

Wednesday and Thursday we spent the night in Rustenburg and went to Pilanesberg Game Reserve both days. We had the BEST luck. Ben and I haven't ever seen that many animals there:

We followed this train of elephants. There were 17 of them!

We saw 3 different prides of lions. UNREAL! Ben and I have only seen one here and we've been here like 10 times!


We were following him slowly on the road when all of a sudden he turned around and charged full on. I was reversing as fast as I could but he wasn't slowing down. We were all screaming and I just kept thinking, "Oh my gosh. What if he doesn't stop!"

Sarah and Bekah have the HILARIOUS video and I'll get it from them soon. It was the highlight of our trip.

This was also a highlight. There were 4 of us and 4 of them. We said this would be us someday and snapped a picture:

We went to another Lion Park Wed night to play with 2 and 3 month old lions.

The good luck ended as soon as we headed home. We popped the tire. Majorly. Didn't even see that pot hole coming. These nice guys stopped to help us and weren't shy about hitting on Sarah, Bekah, and Haylie. Don't worry, they all exchanged numbers.

Friday we went to the Apartheid Museum, which was awesome. And then we took the girl that got baptized, Princess, out shopping to get her a new church outfit since she didn't have one. It was way fun.

Saturday morning, we all went to the Johannesburg Temple. Haylie and Bekah did baptisms while Ben, Sarah and I did a session. I love the temple!

After the temple, brave Bekah went bungee jumping!! YAY! (Video coming from them soon)

You go girl!

And that's it! It was a total blast and they didn't want to leave...nor did I want them to leave. But they had the Buckingham Palace and Wicked waiting for them in London on their way home. Thank you girls SO much for coming. I loved every second. You are the best friends ever!

I have the best...

Happy Birthday! You don't look a day over 28.

Thanks for baptizing me, teaching me to ski, and letting me suck on those big bunny teeth.

I love you!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

The Best 2 Years!

Can you believe it's already been 2 years!?!? WE CAN'T!! It's so awesome! Time sure flies when you're having fun. And we've been having a whole lot of that.

Here's to you baby. For making these last 2 years the best years of my life. Can't wait for the rest!

For Ben's anniversary gift I made our blog into a book! It was super fun and easy and turned out amazing. I used Blurb.com and I just did the year 2008 which was about 115 pages in a hardbound book. I love it and I'm going to continue to do one for each year. Ben's big gift to me was a 90 minute spa treatment giftcard! It's like a mud bath, water massage...and some more things. I can't wait.

Today was also extra special because my cute friend Princess got baptized! It was so fun to be a little missionary and be involved just a little bit in helping her change her life. I gave a talk on the Atonement and played the piano. My friends and I took her shopping with us Friday and had a blast with her. She is such an amazing girl.

It's been an emotional day though because of the baptism, but also because everyone is leaving me tonight. I take the girls to the airport in an hour and I take Ben to the airport a little later tonight. Then I'll be all alone for a month :( Everyone write me lots so I won't die!!!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Happy Birthday to James!

My brother James is 14!!! I love this little man so much. I can't believe how fast he's growing up. We had so much fun pulling weeds, doing crunches, running, playing Rock Band, seeing Ice Age 3, and just hanging out together.

Here are 14 things I love about James:

1. I love his sense of humor. He gets funnier every time I see him.
2. This boy can fake cry better than anyone I know.
3. I love how strong he's getting and his daily push ups.
4. I loved hearing his strong testimony for the first time when he reported on his Pioneer Trek.
5. He made Student Body Officer for his 9th grade class. He's so popular!
6. I love how much he loves Dwayne Wade.
7. I loved that he let us dress him up as a girl so many times.
8. I love our memories of doing his scrapbook together.
9. I love how sad he got and immediately stopped calling our cat "fat" when I told him that we'll be able to communicate with animals in heaven.
10. I love that he can laugh and joke about his little incident at the cabin :)
11. He is so handsome! His blonde hair and blue eyes will melt every girl's heart I'm sure.
12. I love his batman symbol on his chest. He taped it to his chest and went tanning outside.
13. I love how great of buddies he and Brooke have been all their lives.
14. He loves his family! He's the coolest dude EVER!!

Love you James! I'm glad I got to see you on your big day! YOU ROCK!!

Happy Birthday to Grandma Gooney too!! Love you Goon!!

London Baby!

Goodbye Utah! Hello London! I left Utah on Tuesday morning with my 3 friends Haylie, Sarah and Bekah and we got to London on Wednesday morning. We stayed there for 2 days and here is what we did!

Fun red telephone booths:

The Tower Bridge:

Cool building. Don't know what it was:

Parliament and Big Ben:

Kissing Big Ben!!

Westminster Abby:

The London Eye:

We also went to the first ever Hard Rock Cafe for dinner. It was SOOOO good. It was my first time going to one and it was the first one! Awesome huh?

So this was the end of our first day. We were walking zombies. We were honestly falling asleep while we were walking. Our feet were killing us!! We walked all over London all day. But man did we sleep well at our hostel.

The next morning we woke up early and went to Buckingham Palace to watch the changing of the guards and go through some of the things. It's so lucky, because the Palace is only open to the public for one month a year and Haylie, Sarah, and Bekah get to go through it on their way back! They already got their tickets!

Buckingham Palace:

The guards:

We went through the Queen's Gallery, which was awesome and the Royal Mews, where they take care of the royal horses:

The Golden Carriage:

View of Big Ben:

We went to the National Gallery too which was so cool. I loved seeing artwork from Van Gogh, Monet, Leonardo da Vinci, and lots of other favorites.

We headed back for a quick nap and then headed over to Abbey Road for the famous picture.

Here are the Beatles crossing Abbey Road in 1969:

And here we are crossing the exact same spot of Abbey Road in 2009:

It was so fun! The Volkswagen Beetle parked in the back of the Beatles one belonged to one of the people living in the apartment across from the recording studio. After the album came out, the number plate was stolen repeatedly from the car. In 1986, the car was sold at an auction for $23,000 and is currently on display at the Volkswagen museum in Germany.

Another fun fact for ya: Since 1969, there have been over a hundred deaths at the crossing, trying to re-enact this photo.

This is us before the Les Miserables play, it was SO GOOD!!!

The next morning, I left on a flight, but the other girls left that afternoon. We did separate flights because to get on their flight would've been a lot more expensive for me since my return date isn't until January. It stunk because their flight was a totall of 11 hours and my flight was a total of 19. Yuck! I had a 3 hour layover in Abu Dhabi too...it was so rough.

It was so great to land and meet up with the girls and FINALLY SEE BEN!! A month was way to long to be separated. I'm trying not to think about the fact that all 3 friends AND Ben leave next Sunday night for another month. He greeted me with a bouget of beautiful flowers and then I arrived home to this:

So sweet, isn't he? It's so good to be back. And we girls are going to have a BLAST this week!
Stay tuned!