Friday, June 18, 2010

Strawberry Fields Forever

June has been bittersweet here in the Darling household: The loss of a job, encounters with the IRS, depositions and summons and all sorts of nasty things. We can't wait until all of that is over. 

But the sweet. Well, there is one absolutely adorable baby. And berries. LOTS of berries. Straight from my front garden.

Red, Ripe, and Sweet. Just the way we like them.

No, Abby, they aren't for dropping...

Try doing to them what you do to all of your toys...

First Bite...

So...what do you think, Abby-girl?

That good?

So that's a yes?
Luckily, the sweet taste of stolen berries, pies and jam mixed with these amazing smiles make it possible to deal with all the yuck life can throw at you....
Here's to a sweeter future!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Now We Are Six

Today, Abby is six months old! Six! Can you believe it?

This month brought a lot of new 'cans' to our family.

Abby can now roll over to where she wants to go.
Abby can take a bath in the bathtub by herself. Well, with only her duck. And her mama real close.

Abby can make consonant sounds (very loudly).
Abby can pull off her socks so she can get her feet into her mouth.
Abby can stick almost anything in her mouth.

Abby can sit up for LONG periods of time without falling over. This makes picture taking *much* easier.

Abby can laugh. A lot. I love it!
Seriously, who knew babies could make you this happy?! (Or sleep deprived....)

Happy Six Month Birthday, Abby Frog!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Chasing Waterfalls

On any given weekend, there are hundreds of things to do. On several of my weekends this spring, I have begged, pleaded and coerced my sweet Mr Darling to take me up to 'The Grotto' in Payson Canyon. I love it up there. It is lush and green. And always about 20 degrees cooler than my house. And if the weather was always like today, I would be so happy. It was brisk and just a touch humid. And everything seemed so alive and growing!

Mr. Darling's brother and his darling wife joined us as we tromped through the mud and the muck...
Crossed over make-shift bridges...

Carried our darling child in a papoose (well, kind of)

And quickly found ourselves here:

(Insert Obligatory Us-In-Front-Of-The-Waterfall Picture Here)

I guess I still equate waterfalls with unicorns and magic and flying furry friendly dragons. Florida isn't really known for its fantastic and easily accessible waterfalls.

Then, we traded off the happy hiker and continued home

These are the days I love where I live. I mean, lets be real, there aren't too many other places I have been where so many places are picture perfect.

I love Utah in the spring. 

Monday, June 7, 2010

Live At The Red Rocks

One of my favorite places to visit is Sedona, Arizona. My sweet husband's fabulous aunt and uncle live there and the colors, the views, and the weather (last weekend at least) can't be beat! After driving down on most of Friday, we spent Saturday walking and hiking. One of the hikes I did, without my Mr Darling unfortunately, was called Red Rock Crossing. It was stunning.
We started by hopping rocks across a little stream and then following a trail that meandered through groves of trees. 

Then, we followed it along the edge of the creek and finally up a hill to our journey's end. Heiroglyphs! Or Petroglyphs? Hippogriffs? Whatever. Indians wrote on this rock wall a VERY long time ago.

Then, we forded a river (waded across a stream)

(LOOK! I did it with my eyes closed!)
See my brave water dog, cowering behind me? She did NOT like fording this river! However she was not the last one across either... 

(Those other two people are photobombing, they are not with our group)
Then, we walked through the valley of the shadow of stone towers...

Why do people do this? Anyone? It is *kind of* annoying. Not as bad as litter, but definitely not as nice as a pristine landscape.

I didn't build this. I did knock the top of it over so I had to put it back. Grace is simply not my strong suit lately.
Then, we headed back home. It was great to get out and breathe fresh air! I really LOVE Sedona!

Thursday, June 3, 2010


Some of you already know that we adore our dog. She is a labrador retriever. Otherwise known as the retrievingest, water lovingest breed on the planet. 

But Callie is broken. This Memorial Day, we decided to fix that.

Here we are at the Sedona Creek.

Me: You pups want the stick?
Ivy: Yes!!! Want it! Need it!
Callie: Well, maybe....
Me: Swim for the stick!
Ivy: YAY! I get to swim for the stick!!!
Callie: Hmmm, that water looks pretty wet and I am wearing fur...

Ivy retrieves the stick. Callie is suddenly fascinated by a bush way away from the water.
End Scene

So, we decided to teach Callie to swim. She thought it was a form of torture.
First, I dragged her out into the water.

Then, I let her go. She THRASHED like the world was ending.

But, then she got the hang of it.

And was finally accepted by her peers as NOT a wussy, broken, scaredy cat retriever.

But, then she cried all night that her tail hurt from all that swimming.
The End