Sunday, July 31
Over the past couple of weeks we wore ourselves out on vacation in Utah. We had a great family reunion with the Art and Jan Anderson side of our family. It was so great to see everyone and spend time catching up and chatting. Karen and I both think it is amazing to be related to such incredible people. From my grandparents right down to the smallest of my cousins we just have such wonderful people in our family, such great examples to us. A great legacy to live up to. Aside from the formal Anderson reunion we got to spend some time with other family as well. Karen in fact spent several days at the first official Pyper sister retreat. Specific details of the retreat have been kept under secret wraps but I understand there was a lot of game playing, shopping, swimming, and of course talking. Karen had so much fun that I am sure this will not be the last sister retreat. We got to spend some more time with the Biggs and Pyper family too. Although we love living in North Carolina we very much miss being so close to our family......maybe enough some day to bring us back.....maybe (don't get your hopes up yet Shelly and Nana :) ) Along with the reunions we did a bunch of other things that reminded us why we love Utah. Karen and I got up one morning very early and hiked to the top of Mt. Olympus. We made it to the top befor the sun was making it too hot and had such a beatiful view of the entire valley (I of course had a double dose of beauty because I could watch my cute wife while I looked at the valley below!) We had planned on running the Deseret News Marathon but because of various injuries and illnesses during our training we got demoted to running the 10K. We had a great time running that race though. We will not give up on our quest to run a marathon together. After spending two weeks in Utah we were glad to come back home to North Carolina but we will have at least a few days of withdrawl from the mountains and our family. Our girls especially will miss all of the love showered on them by their Nana and Grandpa and cousins.
Sunday, July 10
This weekend was the Durham Swim League championship meet. Both Mary and Emma swam fabulously and their team, the Parkwood Piranhas, won the meet and are now champions of the league three years running. We have been amazed at how great this swim team has been for our girls. Both of them have really become good swimmers and plan on continuing in the sport for a long time.
Tuesday, July 5
We had a great day on the Fourth of July. We were lucky enough to have a picnic that evening with the Greg and Kathy Christiansen (and Reagan, Bethany, and Henry), Spencer and Brooke Cutler (and Kirsten), and Jonas and Rachel Anderson (progeny yet to be determined). We ate near the Regency Park and Amphitheater in Cary and tried hard to listen to a concert by the North Carolina Symphony while the kids all played in the streets around us. There was good food (Karen's fried chicken and cornbread), a riveting game of Perquackay, as well as a dangerous game of frisbee between Jonas and me..... .....then in a turn of events typical of circumstances familiar to us North Carolinians we found ourselves watching fireworks, through some tall trees and in the pouring rain. We laughed as the fireworks beat out the rain and exploded above the lake. What a great time. I was reading from the scriptures this morning the last words of Lehi before he died, "the Lord hath covenanted this land unto me...and also all those who should be led out of other countries by the hand of the Lord. Wherefore, this land is consecrated unto him whom He shall bring. And if it so be that they shall serve him according to the commandments which he hath given, it shall be a land of liberty unto them; wherefore, they shall never be brought down into captivity." 2 Nephi 1:6-7 This year, more than in any year we can remember, we feel blessed to be living in a land with so many freedoms and opportunities. We are aware of the sacrifices, both in the past and present, of brave men and women who fought for and are defending our liberty and freedom. Thank you so much.