further proof that I am indeed one of the most foolish people you know

Beautiful baby Grace turned 8 months last week and because we HAVE TO take her picture every month and there’s NO WAY we could skip a month now and if we PUT IF OFF eight months turns into 8.5 and then 9 and then 10 months… I arranged with Ashli to kidnap her girls and take them to the canyon for photos.

Despite the fact that Sarah plays, eats and occasionally bathes at my house she had a fit of shyness at the last minute and insisted she couldn’t go without her daddy. And Matt, being daddy-of-the-year in every way, calmly suggested, “Let me grab fishing poles for the boys and we’ll follow you up the canyon.”

I felt a bit silly taking photos with Matt there. My friends are accustomed to my loony personality but do their husbands really need to know? He put up with my silly sounds and faces and only looked a bit horrified when I peeled off my boots and socks to wade across the creek, Gracie on my hip, to capture the perfect photo.

Soon, we were done, Matt took off and I turned to Mary as my next photoshoot victim– darling girl, autumn leaves, setting sun….. ahhh, perfection! In the the blur of changing Mary’s dress, throwing my junk in the car and convincing the princess how FUN this would be I found myself standing outside the car as Mary pushed the door shut and we heard the tell-tale BEEP– the car is locked.

As I circled the car in disbelief checking each door and window, Mary burst into tears, “It’s all my fault. I’m honest. It’s all my fault. I was playing with the keys.”

Unbelievably sweet and sincere, she stood barefoot in the parking lot in her gauzy dress with tears streaming down her cheeks. I pulled her into my arms and told her, “No, this is mommy’s fault.”

She looked so lovely that if I’d had my camera, I probably would have brushed back her tears and taken photos anyway. But everything was locked in the car.

Carrying her down the boardwalk we found fisherman and begged them for use of a cell-phone. They were young and I could see them mentally calculating their available minutes as one reluctantly handed me his phone. No service– I think he was relieved.

So, both of us barefoot, Mary in my arms and the sun rapidly setting, we began walking down the canyon. I wore a skirt so my shoelessness was obvious. We looked like little lost waifs.

The night was pitch-black when we reached the first twinkling lights of civilization– Log Haven– a restaurant/reception center so fancy/expensive that you have to be on the Fortune 500 list to eat there. Embarrassed by my scruffiness, I approached one of the parking attendants and begged for use of their phone.

“Up the path, through the restaurant, on the other side of the courtyard.”

A wedding reception was in full-swing, and I wove my way through the rich and famous of Utah toward the safety of the phone. A few idle glances were thrown at my bare feet but I think they are used to a bit of eccentricity at these events.

20 minutes later, Erik picked us up. He’s still teasing me about it.

Gracie’s photos were worth it. But I still need Mary photos. Strangely, she’s a bit wary of venturing up the canyon with me again. I’ll talk her into it: darling girl, autumn leaves, setting sun, keys in my pocket….. ahhh, perfection!

But I may have to wait a few days, because this is our lovely fall weather today:

lovely, isn’t it? and I have no idea why Hans is wearing a helmet in our own backyard. just cautious, I guess.
October 9, 2008
October 15, 2008



  1. Ken

    October 13, 2008

    Dear Michelle,
    Thanks for sharing!
    Your experience brings to mind several “keys locked in the car” stories. I was “house sitting” for a family member that just bought a home and had Glen’s Key & Lock come to change the locks. When the locksmith arrived, he accidently locked his van keys in the van so he asked to use my phone to call the main office for help. While he was waiting for help to come, he explained that this was his first day on the job and we walked out to the van. He tried the back door of the van and to his surprise it was unlocked! Now he had a decision to make. Call them back and explain or simply lock the back door too. I was surprised that he decided to lock the back door rather than explain that he really didn’t check all the doors before calling. He kept his job for I met him a few years later and we had a good laugh about his first day on the job.

  2. Brooke

    October 13, 2008

    how sweet is mary?! and i love the image of you in your bare feet, walking down the canyon, holding your sweet little girl. what a good mama. (wish you had a picture of that.)

  3. twoelves

    October 13, 2008

    adorable picture of Grace. I can’t believe you got snow. I gasped when I saw the snowy picture b/c it is now 80 degrees today.

  4. Christie

    October 13, 2008

    That snow is just plain wrong. That’s all I can say about that.

    I’m so sorry about your craziness! That would be my nightmare scenario. Way to hold it together. I’d have been a puddle of tears, I’m sure.

  5. ashli

    October 13, 2008

    foolish, no! Human….most definitely, and might I add one of the finest I know!
    Thanks, Thanks, and more Thanks!

  6. hans

    October 13, 2008

    I was wearing the helmet because we were supposed to have a snowball fight but everyone wimped out even when I said everyone Vs. me and we being no coat no helmet.

  7. sarah

    October 13, 2008

    NOT foolish BUT a great memory you will definitely laugh at down the road… just a mom trying to get some great photos in- nothing wrong with that is there? Once again those Girls are so dang cute. MIss them and their mom so much. HOpe to meet you in Dec. when I come for a visit.

  8. Denise

    October 14, 2008

    Not foolish, normal. But, I’m sorry you had to walk so far in your bare feet. Just glad you are healthy and capable enough to have done it.

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