Posted by: monsonmadness | May 20, 2013

Awesome birthday

Many of you have been asking what I did for my birthday. The real question should be, “What didn’t I do for my birthday?” We packed so much in. I just love Saturday birthdays.

We started celebrating on Friday night when Michael took me out to dinner at “The Roof”, a fancy pants all you can eat restaurant at the top of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building overlooking the Salt Lake Temple and the valley. The food was delicious. I had prime rib, flank steak, chicken cordon bleu, ham, mashed potatoes, delicious fruit, cheese and crackers, and five desserts. Michael had soup, shrimp, flank steak, ham, mashed potatoes and a small piece of carrot cake. It was great.

The kids gave me lots of candy and silly gifts for my birthday. My birthday present from Michael was supposed to be a hot air balloon ride in Park City on Saturday morning, but the weather was bad and they cancelled it, so we had to come up with some other ways to celebrate.

We drove down to Provo and attended Astrofest at BYU. It was all free and we had a great time climbing the rock wall, playing on giant inflatables in the rain, examining meteorites, watching physics demonstrations, making and shooting rockets, watching a movie in the planetarium and lots more.

After that, we had lunch in the Cougareat and toured around campus. It was so weird being back there, remembering when Michael and I had met. So many memories, it was great. I got chatted up by the cashier at Taco Bell. Happy birthday to me!

We decided to go inside the Talmage building where I spent 90% of my BYU life! At one point I had classes, church and a 40 hour job in that building. The best surprise of all was that my good friend Lonette just happened to be there and we got to catch up after so many years. She gave the kids lots of candy and we laughed at some funny memories of working in the math department.

We had an hour to kill before our next activity, and it was raining, so we decided to go and read books in the library. When we had finished, we drove to south Provo. We drove past the apartments where Michael and I lived when we met, and then to the condo that we lived in for three years as newlyweds. We saw the remains of the burned out Provo Tabernacle and marveled at how it is being constructed into a new temple.

Next it was off to try ice skating (free because we bought those Pass of all Passes at Groupon). The thought of ice skating with so many small kids was pretty frightening. I felt sure that someone would crack their head open or have some fingers sliced off, but I remember how much I loved skating when I was little so wanted to give my kids the same experience. We used two walkers and the kids used those to go around the rink the first time to give them confidence and then they were off! Mary and Emma learned to use the walkers on their own and could go around really well by the time we were done. Benjamin, Hannah and Daniel got pretty confident and loved go around and meeting new friends. Matthew unfortunately was not able to even master the walker. The amount of coordination required was just too much for him, so after a couple of unsuccessful laps, he wanted to give up. I convinced him to come out with me and I would skate backwards and hold both of his hands and go slowly. Bad idea. He is almost as heavy and tall as I am, and he could not even stay upright, which meant when he fell, I fell too. He wasn’t even able to help himself get up off the ice and I could barely manage to pick him back up, so we gave up on that idea, and he happily sat on the side with Michael and Grace.

After ice skating (yes, there’s more), we drove back into town and were surprised to find center street closed. There was some kind of festival going on. We looked closer and sure enough, there was a Polynesian festival. We quickly pulled over and went to explore. It was so neat being surrounded by so many Samoan people, see the Samoan clothes and food, and smile at their loud blasting music everywhere. After a while of wandering though, I started to feel really melancholy. We didn’t fit in at all, and there were no smiling faces. We didn’t know anyone, and it made me miss my friends in American Samoa, so we left ;( !!!

Off to dinner we went at the delicious Bombay House in Provo. We all love Indian food, and we got quite a lot of stares because I don’t think many kids eat there, and especially not so many at one table. The kids were really well behaved though and enjoyed being treated like adults for once!

A beautiful drive home through the gorgeous Provo canyon, and it was time to put the kids to bed and crash in front of a movie. We rented Les Miserables (boo, I’m not a fan, that would be the only thing I would change about this day!), and then went to bed much too late.

All in all, a GREAT day spending time with my wonderful family. Thank you to all of you who called, emailed, or facebooked with birthday messages. I appreciated them all.


  1. Great day! I’m glad you had such a fun birthday!!

  2. looks like a super fun day for your whole family. bet they wished you had birthdays more often!

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