Monday, July 22, 2013


Today is my big day - the one I have been waiting for all year - where I can truly say that I am "One YEAR older and WISER too"! (I'm 38 now folks - so stop guessing!)

I am not sure why - but I always found it fascinating to see who I shared a birthday with. Even though I will likely never know any of the so-called 'famous' people in my lifetime. If I did meet them, I think we would have some sort of an instant bond. You know - like - "Dude, we were born on the same day - so clearly we both rock."  Like that.

You may be asking who (just play along) it is that I share a birthday here are a few of my very own "Birthday Buddies".

Albert Brooks - stand up comedian who said, "I think anger and laughter are very close to each other, if you think about it." Um - wow. Chew on that gem for a minute.

Alexander Calder - inventor of the mobile In case my parents ever thought to put one over my crib - THANK YOU DUDE!  Also - I am pretty sure I used your idea on a few science fair projects as a child - something to do with a hanger and some styrofoam balls painted like planets - but don't quote me on that!

Willem Dafoe - actor You may know his as the 'bad guy' in SpiderMan, but lest he go down in infamy, be it known that he was also the voice of Gill in 'Finding Nemo'! *redeemed*

Oscar de la Renta - fashion designer I never have owned or worn anything even remotely close to this - but someday when we meet I am sure that he would love to gift me with an article of clothing just for being his Birthday Buddy!

Bob Dole - politician I know that he ran against the Clinton machine and lost - but all I can think about when I see or hear his name is "Pineapples". Yum!

Danny Glover - actor If you don't know this man from anything other than 'Lethal Weapon' - shame on you! He was in one of my favorite movies as a child called "Places in the Heart". He was also in "The Color Purple" (which my big brother dragged me to with his date and then stuck me in a row away from him and his girl so he could make out with her)  #IamstillscarredoverthatJohn

Selena Gomez - actress This is one pretty popular little girl (who can legally drink as of today) - just keep it safe, my friend - call a cab. (or a limo or whatever you peeps do).

Cosmo Duff Gordon - athlete He was an athlete - which I am NOT by any way, shape, or form - BUT, he is also a SURVIVOR of the TITANIC! (I know - lift up yer jaw now!)

Don Henley - singer; songwriter Yup - that one! From "The Eagles". I just hope that he is going to "Take it Eeeeaaasy" on our big day today! ;)

Edward Hopper - painter He painted the iconic "Nighthawk". (I am pretty sure you will google that now if you don't already know it!)

Rose Kennedy - philanthropist Of course we all know that she had two children who were assassinated, but did you know that she lived to be 104? Serio. That is the same exact age that I am going to live to be - how cool is that???

Emma Lazarus - poet Her poem is displayed at the Statue of Liberty, it features the famous lines, "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free." Amen, Sista!

John Leguizamo - actor He was in "Die Hard 2" and "Regarding Henry". Who knew?

Mildred Loving - civil rights activist This woman was cool because she married a white man (she is black) and it was illegal at the time in their state - but they fought it and it inspired many of the rest of the states to get rid of the statute prohibiting interracial marriages. I'm loving on the Lovings!

Gregor Mendel - scientist Um, Hello! Father of Genetics! As in - all those peas - all those graphs - xx and xy and recessive and dominant!  Thanks to this guy I know why all my boys have beautiful brown eyes and both my girls have gorgeous blue ones!

David Spade - actor I honestly used to love watching his shows on TV. For a small dude, he packs some pretty serious "funny-ness" in there.

Alex Trebek - game show host  "I'll take 'Birthday Buddies' for 400, Alex". How cool is this one? (I know, right - that was totally asked in a question form. Bring it!)

Rufus Wainwright - singer This dude is a Canadian-American who started playing piano at the age of 6 and won huge awards in Canada by his teens. Talented, eh?

Well - that's all for now, folks. Thanks for sharing my big day with me - and to all you other fellow CANCER-sign people - we rock!   Carry On!

Oh - and PS: To my own mother and father - thanks for hangin' in there for number TEN child to be born - I know it wasn't easy to suffer wait through that many children till you finally got what you were really wanting. But I sure am glad you did!  Love you both! 
Love, Your favorite daughter. 
*wink wink*

Tuesday, July 2, 2013


It is hard to believe that the kids have been out of school for over a month now. This summer is flying by!

Here's what we did:

A) Bailey Family Reunion

B) Visit to Yellowstone with Brazilian friends

C) "Encampment"

Here's how I FELT about it:
A) It was so much fun. Paula found an awesome lodge in Heber, Utah that was so beautiful and was a perfect fit for the entire Bailey family. There was a pool and basketball court and the cousins had a blast. We had the traditions of the park day with "steal the flag" match, and the annual Spud Derby. My kids look forward to this time every year and are never dissapointed. So much fun. Here are a few pics.

Grandpa stacking cups for Minute to Win It games.
At the entrance to hiking the "Y" on our way to the reunion.

Sitting on top of the Y

One of the best parts of any Bailey reunion is the seemingly endless supply of good drinks!

Greg and the kids playing in the pool.

Everyone was so exhausted on the way down the mountain...haha!

Making S'mores at the fire pit.

All the big boys watching TV on the big screen. Greg is so much like his dad - this cracks me up!

The little boys pretending to drive the razor.

Playing Minute to Win It games!

Stopping in for our favorite candy apples at the Rocky Mountain Chocolate factory after the Alpine slide trip!

Sadie won an award for "Couch Potato" at the Spud Derby this year - hers was the slowest to go down the track.

Greg and the boys eating their "catch o' the day" from their fishing trip that morning!

Cousin Ethan by the Spud Derby track.

Kids were getting a little bit weird with all the time together in the car!

B) My sweet dear mission companion and friend, Silvia, came up with her hubby and her three adorable daughters and we had a very quick and very memorable trip to Yellowstone. As always, the children just had more fun playing with each other than actually caring about watching Old Faithful go off. Also - on a side note here, it seems that the more times I go to Yellowstone - the less animals I get to see. So weird how that feels. Maybe the animals have a sense of fear when they smell me entering the park? Who knows. Anyhow - it was good for me to be able to use my Portuguese all weekend and  it was fun to see Sadie get along so well with her daughters and she was even trying to learn Portuguese words as well! What a blessing to see our children playing together and to think of the eternal impact that my mission has had on my own life! It was a great weekend. Here are a few pics.

we literally only saw a a handful of Bison this time - but they are always such majestic creatures.

On a hike out to one of the hot pots.

Silvia and Me - who would've ever thought 18 years ago in Brazil that we would be standing together in Yellowstone someday?!

Anna and Emerson

Elena and Maelynn

All the kids waiting on a log to watch Old Faithful go off.

Miles and Elena

Silvia and I near Old Faithful

Greg and Dener took the kids out to paddle-board.

They had a blast.

Seth and Miles near the fire pit getting ready to roast marshmallows.

Such an American tradition to sit around the fire roasting things!

Lane and Elena playing in the tent in the back yard that they were wanting to sleep in!

Dener shooting the .270

Silvia shooting the rifle.

Dener playing with the kids before they left!

C) "Encampment" was a very exciting and huge scouting event that was put on here in Eastern Idaho to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the LDS church being in partnership with the Boy Scouts of America. Greg took the time off of work and went as the scoutmaster and Landen and Seth went as well. They all really enjoyed their time there. They got to do a TON of fun things, like archery, knife throwing, BMX biking, zip line, rock climbing, skeet shooting, wheelchair races, etc. etc. They got a good dose of entertainment by visiting talent groups and they also got a good dose of spiritual enrichment by participating in various activities in order to earn the "Thomas S. Monson" award. They had the President of the Boy Scouts and the Young Men's president of the church speak to them. They learned all about 'putting on the Armor of God' and what that means. They got a special ring from their Bishop and all in all they just came home on cloud 9 about the 4 days they spent there. It was quite a site (and I only saw it in pictures) to see over 10, 700 scouts out in a hot field for 4 days. Impressive and memorable event indeed. I am grateful that they had this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Here are a few pics.