Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Easter 2017

On Saturday morning the Easter Bunny had come and hidden our eggs in the front yard (the smart E.B. knows that we have dogs . . .).
 Even the teenager still likes looking for the eggs!

There were some tricky eggs hidden this year.  But, eventually, all eggs were found!

Then it was back inside to hunt for the Easter baskets.  Miles challenged the E.B. by stating a few days before Easter, "The Easter Bunny needs to hide the baskets better this year!"  Game On.  Most of the kids would not have found their baskets without a little help - especially Miles.

Lucy and her basket (or bag).  And Wilson - who liked the smells coming from it . . .

Sunday was a nice Easter Sunday.  We went to church, I taught sharing time to a bunch of noisy (sugar-high?) kids, and . . . Ben came home RIGHT after church.  I truly think this was the FIRST time he's done that since being called as bishop 4 1/2 years ago!  Yes, when we are visiting somewhere else, of course he comes with us.  And, yes, after stake conferences he usually (but definitely not always) comes home with us.  But a regular Sunday in our ward?  Never.  It was great.

We made our resurrection rolls - this year doing homemade rolls.  They were amazing.  My kids asked why we can't have resurrection rolls all year long . . . :)  The missionaries stopped by to drop off something and we gave them some, too.  So good and so fun.

I had forgotten to get Easter Sunday pictures before church . . . so we did them like after dinner or something!  
We didn't buy any "new" dresses - but I did find the girls each a dress at a second-hand store.  Cute.

I think this is my favorite picture of all time of my kids.  I love it so much.  They look like they like each other!  (Which, I guess, sometimes they do!)

Happy Easter!

Some of this, some of that

The kids wanted to do this picture-thing at the mall in St. George.  So I let them - I remember getting them with my friends back in the days.  :)  Cute, cute.  The kids thought they were pretty great!
 Miles' wrestling team.  Go Braves!

 Our March calendar - better late than never in posting this, I guess!

 On Friday we dyed Easter Egg.  We dyed them with shaving cream - fun, but not so effective.  :)

 Hard at work.

 Working hard.

There are the eggs - sitting in the shaving cream/food coloring mixture.

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Capitol Reef, Days 2 and 3

I should backtrack a little bit and state how we decided to camp at the Fruita campground and explore Capitol Reef (although this will be the first post you'll be reading, so it's not backtracking for you).

On our ladies' camping/hiking trip a couple weeks back, the group had to stop at what is called The Gifford House.  This house is located right in Capitol Reef and is famous for its pie.  I am not a pie person and so I didn't buy any.  But all the other ladies did - both on our way there and on our way home.  I thought Ben would love the house - and not just for the pies; it also had jams, cute wooden utensils, aprons, history, etc.  It's awesome.  So I wanted to bring Ben to the house - which is right in the Fruita campground in Capitol Reef National Park.  I got online and the park looked cool and so we decided to spend a few days hiking and camping - and eating pies.  And that's what we did.

So our first day was hiking Sulphur Creek (see the next post).  Our second day we headed out for a 5-mile hike (again, thanks to having 2 cars to help shuttle!).  We hiked the Cassidy Arch trail, to Frying Pan trail, then out Cohab Canyon - which brought us right in to our campground.  No water this day.  But it was another awesome hike and the kids did really great.  This one was a little tougher in that we had a lot of uphill - including the 1,000 feet gain in just the first mile.  Lucy did it all - with complaints, but not many.  She has gotten so much better from just last year - yay!  Okay, on to the many pictures . . . 
 Emmy started the day off with lots of energy.  :)  The piggyback didn't last long, but it sure was cute!

 The two brothers hiking up the trail.

 Sweet stuff - so true.

 Posing (and back to smiling) Emmy.

 You can see Cassidy Arch right over Miles' head.  We didn't take the 1/2 mile trek out to it because we wanted to go beyond.  Also, we heard it was slightly sketchy for little ones, so we got a picture and that was enough.

 We got to the "top," sort-of, and had some impressive views.  Again, pictures don't do it justice, but it was super cool.

 We took a snack-break on this rock - that had a lovely hole in it.  :)  It was cold and windy up there and so I didn't want to break for long!

 The view on the rock.

 Picture-taking Emmy.

 Again, the view.  It was so neat - you'll have to go and see if for yourself!

 The last section of our hike was in Cohab canyon.  It was cool and had fun spots to climb in.

 Sometimes climbing can be a little scary, though . . . :)

 One of the few pictures of just Ben and I.

 As I mentioned, the hike ended at our campground.  This shows the Fruita area (that has Mormon history you can research if you want).  You can see The Gifford House in the very back, the barn, etc.  There are orchards everywhere, too.  Our campground would on the left side of the picture.  It was fun ending the hike right at the campground.  (We left the kids and went and got the car left at the trailhead.)

 After a late lunch, a trip to the Gifford House (for suckers and ice cream this time) and  the Visitor Center, we did one more hike.  We tried to call it "just a walk," as it was only 2 miles - but the kids were still less-than-thrilled.  But we did it and enjoyed it for the most part.  :)  This hike was to Hickman Bridge - which is in the above photo, but is hard to really see.

 That evening the kids worked on their Junior Ranger booklets.  I love this photo!

The boys were hard at work, too!

After dinner we went to a "Ranger program," which was one of the activities in their books that they could chose to do.  It was great and we really enjoyed it!  The rangers (volunteer "rangers") did a little opening activity and then it was just questions and answers.  It turned out really interesting.

Saturday was super windy - the high for Sunday was going to be 46!  Plus, we had a 4-hour drive (and sharing time to plan!) and so we didn't plan too much.  We packed up, had one last visit to the Gifford House, and 2-ish last hikes.  Then home it was.  Boohoo.  So here are pictures from Saturday, our third and last day there:

 In line paying for the pies.  The boys shared a cherry (the best!), the girls chose a cinnamon roll instead (they LOVED it), and Ben and I shared (I did have a few bites . . . ) a cherry as well.

 The Gifford House and our goodies!  :)

The kids turned in their booklets and got their Junior Ranger badges.  So awesome.

At the ranger program from the night before, we were told of a spot we could find pre-dinosaur tracks.  It was on the Sulphur Creek hike, which we had done on Thursday.  But, luckily, not too far in - like 1/2 a mile at most.  So we decided to go and check it out.
Here is what we found - the rock with tracks, just like the ranger said.  It was some alligator-like creature that was some precursor to the dinosaurs.  Or something like that.  Weird!

We then went on to our final hike - the Grand Wash.  It was a simple, flat hike - and only 2 miles.  It was easy-peasy.  :)

 Inside the wash - it was grand!

 Miles, the dot, running away because he was mad that Ben didn't like the fact that he was throwing rocks (or dirt-clods, or whatever they were) at Jonas.  "It's a game we're playing!"

Ta-da!  All done!  15 miles hiked in all!

It was a great, great trip!  One of our bests, I think!

Capitol Reef, Day 1

I did all the sheet-washing and major cleaning at my parents' St. George home on Wednesday night so that we could head out pretty early on Thursday morning.  We left around 6:30; Ben left Montrose at 5:30.  We met up at the Fruita Campground in Capitol Reef.  Ben beat us by an hour - and had a camp-site (the campground was filled by 11 that morning) and tent all set-up by the time we found him.

After finishing setting up the camp, etc., we ate some lunch and then headed out for our first hike of the trip:  Sulphur Creek.  We had read about it online and it looked fun.  We checked with the ranger at the visitor center; he gave us some much-needed advice about navigating the 3rd waterfall we'd come to.  Otherwise, I'm not sure what we would have done!  Anyways, the hike was 6-miles long (thanks to having 2 cars!) and pretty fantastic.  The kids were pretty great, too.

 A nice couple from France offered to take our picture.   This was at the very beginning of our hike.

 Some sisterly love.

 The kids always love climbing the rocks and getting in those little nooks.

 "Bunk beds!"  Of course Miles got the top . . . such a big brother.  :)

 Lots of cool rocks were found in the wash area of the hike.

 The hike met up with Sulphur Creek and we enjoyed walking through it.  It was cool - but not freezing.  Fun!

 Yes, I know.  He's almost as tall me.  And I couldn't be more thrilled!

 A cool spot along the hike.

 Another shot to give you a bit more perspective -though, of course, photos don't do areas like this justice.

 We three girls enjoying the fun hike.

 The first waterfall.  Cool!

 A neat spot.

 Same spot.  Different angle.  Different people.

 The second waterfall.  See what a cool and fun hike it was!?

 A fun spot crossing the creek.  Lucy just looooves to be in pictures.  :)  Ben carried me across at this part.  Not, ahem, because I couldn't or wouldn't.  But because Emmy was just so wanting her dad to carry her mom across.  :)  It was a highlight of the hike for her and she was really excited to tell her brothers about it.  It was pretty cute.

Nearing the end!

All the kids did pretty great on the hike with only limited whining (none of which came from Miles . . ).

Loved it!