Monday, November 13, 2017

Hiking with the Boys . . .

So my boys were off of school this past Friday.  Just their school in the whole district.  I had taken all my kids, except for Miles, to the Neosho Mine this past summer.  Miles was away at scout camp.  I thought he would love the hike and so we decided to hike it - again for some of us, the first time for others.  It was a great day and I think all the boys had fun - especially with their snowball fights!  One of my best-friends was the other mom and so I had an awesome time, too, chatting it up with her.  I would say we were hiking in snow for about 75% of the hike - but it wasn't deep or wet and so it was totally fine.


Sarah and myself!

 The four boys and Brigham on the trail.  Miles, Jesse, Aiden, and Jonas.

 Again, the four boys and Brigham's bum.  :)

 Here are the boys at the mine - Miles is chilling in the mine cart or whatever it is.

 One of the houses up there - it's pretty cool and a little sketchy to go inside!

 Brigham had a fabulous time!

Snowball fight!

The boys inside the cave - as much as we would allow them to go in!

It was a beautiful day and a perfect day for a fall hike!

Friday, November 03, 2017

October and Eyes

 As always, October was busy and AWESOME:

I had an eye appointment yesterday and Lucy asked me, "Why do you have one blue and one green eye?"  Huh?  I didn't think much of it until Jonas came home from school and he asked me the same question.  Weird - I can hardly see it.  But I guess when the yellow eye-drop solution mixed with my blue eyes, it created a green eye for a bit.  :)

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Halloween 2017

Well, it wasn't my favorite Halloween.  Probably because I didn't do much with the costumes.  Then I got some bummer news about Emmy's gymnastics team not being able to compete this weekend (and thus they most likely won't compete at all this year, including at State - which is what they have been working on all year long . . .) and it sort of ruined the evening for me.

But, I think the kids had a good time.  We trick-or-treated in our neighborhood for a bit, then we drove over to Lucy's teacher's neighborhood since she had invited all her students to come to her house and trick-or-treat.  Of course her husband answered the door and so we didn't even see Mrs.  Dodd!  Oh well.  There is a haunted house there that the boys went in - twice - and they liked that.  They got enough candy.  Not like tons, but definitely enough.

 I went to the school's parade and then hung out in Lucy's classroom afterward.  What a bunch of cute 1st-graders!

 Lucy, aka Poppy the Troll, enjoying treats at her classroom party.

 I made mummy calzones for dinner.  Spooky.

 Once again, Lucy - aka Poppy from Trolls.

Emmy - a Schuyler sister from the Broadway musical Hamilton.  Which Schuyler sister - it depended on the day . . .sometimes Angelica, other times Eliza, and every once in a while, Peggy.  :)

 Once again, Jonas and Jim!  I don't think we've ever gotten more compliments on a costume than with this one (again, nice job Ben!).  So many people loved it.  In fact, most houses had to call in the rest of their family and friends to come and check it out.  Fun for Jonas.  :)

 Dr. Maxwell.  Scrubs courtesy of the Black Canyon Surgical Center.  It even came complete with a stain.  Awesome.

The whole gang - Dr. Maxwell, Jim, lazy Jonas being carried, Poppy, and a Schuyler sister.

Happy Halloween.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

The Pumpkin Patch

So we didn't make it up to our favorite pumpkin patch in Junction this year.  So we went to our local one.  It's really nice - but I think it's for younger kids, really.  We've outgrown it!  But the kids still had fun and we (Ben and I) were super happy that the pumpkins were half-off.

 They all loved Sterling!

 What a fun and big tire swing!

 It sure is beautiful up there.

 The kids all fell in love with the cows.  Funny.

Something's wrong with this picture . . . :)

'Tis the season - I love fall!


So STUCO stands for the Student Council at my boys' middle school.  I encouraged Jonas to join in the beginning of the year - and then encouraged Miles to as well!  I should have encouraged Miles in his 6th-grade year as well, but I didn't so oh well!

So STUCO meets each Monday right after school.  They discuss . . . things.  Like upcoming activities, fundraiser ideas, sporting events, etc.

Miles is the STUCO co-president - his partner is a girl named Camryn.  They didn't have to get voted in really.  A while ago the students voted in the president.  Then it changed to STUCO members voting.  But this year no one really wanted it, I guess - but Miles and Camryn decided they would do it as co-presidents.  Funny.

Both boys seem to enjoy it.  They get to sell concessions at our home sporting events.  The boys totally like that - they get to make nachos, sell stuff, get $1 of free food for each hour they help, etc.  :)

This past Friday the school had its activity/dance night.  The boys stayed after school to help get set up and then came home at 8pm.  They loved it.  Miles was "helping" out with the cake-walk and "being crazy," as he told me.  Jonas got to be the DJ.  He was super excited about it - but then also told me that kids would come and "cuss" at him because he wasn't playing their songs.  Ha.  But they were both excited to tell us all about it.

Here is one picture the school posted in its facebook page:
The theme of the night was "red carpet."  Only because STUCO has more girls than boys in it and that is what they voted for - per report from my boys.  :)

A side-note of STUCO.  So Miles was going to a merit-badge rally a week or so ago and needed 2 more badges to get the next rank.  As we were reviewing the required badges that he was recommended to work on, I thought there was no way he'd be able to pass it off on that one Saturday because there were service hours to do, meetings to attend, etc.  Turns out that his service on STUCO and his STUCO meetings qualified and he was able to pass them off.  So cool.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

2017-18 School Pictures

I have 2 sets of twins this year . . . 
 Lucy.  1st grade.  Mrs. Dodd.  Northside Elementary.

 Emmy.  4th grade.  Mr. Scott.  Northside Elementary.

 Jonas.  6th grade.  Centennial Middle School.

Miles.  8th grade.  Centennial Middle School.

Random Happenings, Plus a Sneak-Peek at Halloween . . .

As in years past, the girls did a cheer-camp for 5 days and then got to perform at the high school's football game's half-time.  They loved it all - practices and their 10-second performance!  :)

No, Ben didn't change professions by becoming an astronaut.  This is him in the "space-suit" as they call it in surgery.  He's at the hospital here working on a total knee-replacement.  I think Ben was sewing up the patient at this point?

 The boys had a Court of Honor this past week.  Here is Jonas conducting the flag ceremony.
 Some of the scouts.  Including weird-Miles.  :)

 Here is Miles pinning me.  I think he got his Star rank and is pretty close to his Life . . .?  I really know nothing about it and don't even know how he got this far - except thanks to his scout leader and scout camps and merit badge rallies (where he gets a lot of the un-fun required badges done).

  And here is Jonas pinning me . . . I think he earned his Tenderfoot and is pretty close to earning 2nd class.  Or something like that.

 Here's an early sneek-peak at Jonas' costume!  We had a ward party last night and so had to get it ready for then.  Ben was the master-maker of this costume!  He did it all, with a little help from Jonas.

 I think it turned out so awesome; Jonas loves it, too!  He got lots of positive reactions last night.  :)

 Ben had to run to the second-hand store to see if he could find a cape for Jonas' costume (which he did, luckily).  Ben also came back with this wig.  I put it on and decided I would dress up as the 1985 version of Dixie Galbraith.  Pretty close, huh?!  :)

Lucy was an awesome sport and went as a BYU cheerleader!  Her Poppy (troll) costume wasn't here yet - which we thought would happen and so we had decided on this outfit for back-up.  Totally cute.

The ward party included 2 wards and the branch and had a carnival and then the trunk-or-treat.  The kids all had fun running around with their friends and getting lots of candy.  Here is Lucy with her friends Jayden and Lila.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Goblin Valley 2017

So I just looked at my blog and realized this was our 5th year of adventuring to Goblin Valley.  I did it solo this year - well, solo in the adult-sense.  I took our kids, plus a friend DJ, and Brigham.  It was fun - except when it wasn't.  It's a little hard and lonely not having a friend/spouse for me!  Jonas drove me berserk at times and really ended it on a sour note for all of us.  :(  Miles was less-than helpful.  The girls were okay - except for the love-hate relationship they have going on.  Although, really, it's not that bad.  The love is there for like 90% of the time - then you get the, "I'm never playing with her again!"  And then 1 minute later they are playing together again happily . . . at least for another 9 minutes or so . . . :)

Anyways, the kids had a half-day on Thursday and so we headed out early and were able to get to Goblin Valley and set-up camp and play around.  Friday was spent hiking Bells and Little Wild Horse Canyons - a nice 8-mile loop hike.  We had a bit of water last year in Bells, but never have I seen it in Little Wild Horse.  Except for this year - we literally had water up to our waist.  And that slot-canyon-never-see-the-sun water is super cold!  But it added to our adventure and was a little fun.  :)  Brigham did awesome up Bell and then we struggled with him a bit after that.  He didn't like jumping off ledges, swimming in murky water, etc.  He definitely added stress!  But he's also so fun to have around.  We had an enjoyable evening and I think each one of us saw at least one shooting star - so cool.

Saturday morning we packed up and headed to the official Goblin Valley (State Park).  The kids had fun playing around the goblins and then I found a cool area for them to play and suggested they play "capture the flag."  That was great . . . until Jonas lost it (figuratively and literally) and I was done and ready to leave.  So we left and had a nice drive home listening to The Witch of Blackbird Pond (which we finished) and Harry Potter #1.

It's such a great area for kids - I just need to have an adult around for my sake next time.  :)

 The girls were excited about our camp spot and - after our tent was set up - went off to climb and explore.

 The boys were off and running, too - as soon as their tent was up.

 Finally eating some dinner!

 The girls ready for bed - we brought two tents, one for the girls and one for the boys.  It worked out great.

 Emmy took this lovely picture of me - ha.  I thought it was the only picture of me . . . but I managed to make it in one more.  :)

 The kids didn't waste too much time on Friday morning to climb to the top of the hill.  Brigham had fun going up and down and up and down.

 This is in the beginning of Bells Canyon.  Brigham loved it at this point.  :)

 The girls kept telling me how much they love this hike!

 Snack/water break on the rocks.  Super cool.

 Another break higher up on the rocks.  Even cooler.

 So this was the first big trouble-spot for Brigham.  He would not jump down anywhere!  We tried and tried and tried.  Finally I had to walk for like 15 minutes along the upper-ridge until I could find a more mellow spot to come down.  He's a silly dog - he could totally do it, but he's super scared of it.

 In the slot canyon!

 This was the first water-spot - it only came up shin-deep.  But it gave us a taste of what it was going to be like walking in waist-high water.  We weren't too thrilled.  :)

 There's the long stretch of water - which did go up to our waists at a few spots.

 Brigham did not like this!  He kept trying to come back, but then we'd just have to push him forward.  Poor guy.

 Go, Brigham, go!

 I carried Lucy on my back.  I thought I would go and drop my backpack off and then come back for her.  But I decided I didn't want to have to go through that water any more than once, so my pack went on my front and Lucy on my back.  At the deep point Lucy exclaimed, "Ahhh, my feet are touching!  Hold me higher mom!"  Poor baby to have her feet in the water.  :)

 DJ was pretty great - he even went back in the water to help Emmy towards the end. I'm pretty sure he'd never done anything like this before and so it was good for him.  He did take like a 2-hour nap when we got back from hiking that evening.  :)

 The girls do love chilling in holes.

 Miles is pretty cute . . . but I took this picture to show how dirty he was.  But you can't tell!  Oh well, it's a nice picture of Miles.

 We got back from our all-day hike and the girls immediately started playing their games - no, Lucy is not napping.  It's just part of the game.

 Saturday morning - Goblin Valley!  It's the best picture I got - and too bad that Lucy was in the shade.  Oh well, I've plenty others from years past!

Brigham enjoyed it - but had to be leashed in the state park.

The end.