Saturday, September 24, 2011

Teenagers Can Be Funny, Too!

Against his wishes, I am going to write a blog with my oldest child in it.  He asked me earlier this summer not to blog about him since it was "embarrassing".  I'm lucky that he didn't see that blog about when he was nursing his kitty. 
Anyway, I bought a couple of tubs of hummus at Costco, which the boy LOVES hummus.  Who knew?  So he told me that I needed to get all of the different kinds of hummuses.  I said "Don't you mean 'hummi'?" To which he insisted it was hummuses.  I gave him some examples in defense of my case, such as more than one cactus is cacti, and more than one alumnus is alumni.  Chloe tried to join in and also named Moroni.  I asked her what the singular of Moroni would be.  Dillan had the answer.  "Moron."  And to think, that I thought he was past the age of giving me any funny material to write about.  Thanks Sweetheart!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Rim to Rim Fall 2011

In a word: Fabulous.  In two words: Not Stinky.  In five words: I even took a nap!  I'm not talking about the hike, I'm talking about the dreaded shuttle ride from the South Rim to the North Rim.  I was not looking forward to that at all since the last trip when I was trapped in a super stinky, too cramped van for four hours.  But this time, we got the NEW van that had not gotten stinky yet, AND Kevin and I had the four person back seat to ourselves!  So I took advantage of the situation (not the one from the Jersey Shore) and laid down and fell asleep.  Our driver's name was Steve and he had crazy eyes, but those eyes came in handy when a deer darted in front of us.  There was rain along the way.  And a rainbow, which Crazy Eye Steve kept pointing out and swerving off the side. 
Before we started out trek as we were waiting for the shuttle to load up, an Italian woman was fascinated with the new hiking poles that Kevin had bought this summer.  They are super light weight and collapse to smaller than other poles.  She spoke to him in Italian and then she called all of her Italian friends over so they could admire them too.  It was quite a sight to see him explaining to these people in English and they responded in Italian.
So, it was chilly when we got to the North Rim.  I know that's all relative, but I was not prepared.  Fortunately, I had a husband who bought me gloves and ear warmers. 
We started out on the trail at 7:15 am.  Kevin took a picture because he said I looked like a hobo. Hey, I don't like to be chilly.  He also made fun of my pose.

There he goes!  I had a fellow hiker ask me if someone was chasing me because I was going so fast.  I told him "No!  I'm trying to keep with that guy!"  I did twist my ankle pretty bad and heard a crack, but kept going.  What were my options?  Sit? 
We came round the trail to the Pump house Residence where Kevin turned around to me and pointed out the best news of the day.  A NEW BATHROOM!!!!  And to think that I had just watered the trail about 1/2 mile before because previously, there was no bathroom there, in fact there was a sign right by where that tree is that said "This lawn is NOT a toilet!"  And now it is!  Of course I had to christen it.  There wasn't even a cobweb in it!  We knew it was brand spanking new since it wasn't there on our rim to rim to rim hike in May. 
At the next usual stop, there were workers doing some tree trimming.  Kevin talked to one of the workers and discussed the trees that were there and what needed to be done to take them down, etc.  Then we came to a group of hikers that yelled out "Who wants to see a rattle snake?"  What are you supposed to say to that?  Yes, but not too close?  Kevin told them it wasn't a rattle snake (they were from New York, so they probably think that all snakes in AZ are rattlers)  You be the judge.

We traveled a little further and some other hikers paused to admire a plant that looks like a giant morning glory
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It's hard to tell from this picture how big it is, but it is about the size of a softball.  As the ladies were admiring it, speculating as to what kind of flower it was, Kevin breezed by and said "That's a datura plant.  It's poisonous and a hallucinogenic."  I'm sure they were shocked to have this drive by expert just spout off that information.  I dubbed him the "Ben Driggs of the North Kaibab Trail" since he knew all of the flora and fauna.  Only Mountain View members will get that reference.
We got to Phantom Ranch, had a quick bite then left.  I was hitting the wall, and had to mentally gear myself up for the task ahead.  I don't think I've felt like that for a while.  But I drank my Perpetuem (HIGHLY RECOMMEND) and took off.  Devil's Corkscrew was next and I HATE the sandy part leading up to it because it is not easy to walk through sand in hiking boots, but thanks to the recent rain, the sand was packed down.  Whooppee
I got out at the top, all sweaty, disgusting, dirty with my pack on and hiking poles and some older man said to his wife "Here comes a serious walker."  If I had the energy, I would have told him all of the serious WALKING I had done all day long.
I checked in to the Maswik Lodge, and it was lovely to have a bath and clean up.  We ate at the Maswik Lodge as well, and Kevin and I couldn't decide if it was because the food was so good or the fact that we were so hungry, but it was the best meal we had on this trip.  Hands down!  AND to top it off, the Utah vs byu game was on!!  We kept saying what a perfect evening it was.  Sad for the team that lost very badly though.  Lucky for us, that wasn't who we were cheering for!
Thanks to the McKellars for keeping our people safe.  Olivia did suffer a minor head injury when she was jumping up to see Dillan's snake and hit her head on the edge of the cabinet and she has a small gash in the top of her head, but that could happen anytime, even if I was looking right at her. 
***NOTICE*** Sisters and Brother, This is NOT the hike that we will be doing next fall.  That one will only be 17 miles of hiking.  This one was a little longer at 24 miles.  Oh, and the crack in my ankle?  I don't think I broke it or anything, but it stills hurts.  I put myself on mandatory Kindle reading until the end of the week.  Then I will stop reading.  Maybe.  Unless I find another good book to read.  Why are there so many books I want to read?  Will I ever get them all read?  If not, please put some in my casket.  Seriously.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Wicked

This is one of my all time favorite pictures.  And I am with one of my all time favorite people.  This is Kim and we were roommates at Weber State during my last year at nursing school.  From the moment I met her, I loved her.  She was happy, funny, super spiritual, and most importantly, she loved to sing.  We lost touch with each other after getting married and moving, but thanks to modern social networking, I found her!  I think it was one of the most happiest moments to find her again.  So this past summer, we got together in Utah while she was staying in Park City and I was doing my tour of Utah.  We met at her condo in Park City with all of our kids, who fortunately each had a buddy to play with, because from the moment we got there, Kim and I talked and talked and talked like we hadn't seen in each other for thirteen years.  We laughed, we cried, we ate, she fixed my inner being, our kids ran around like wild animals, and it was one of my most favorite days while I was there this past visit, and maybe even the whole year.  It was such a filling of my friend bucket to spend that time with her.  We cried over the recent loss of her baby Beau that never took a breath, and we commiserated on our common losses, but how we each have angel babies that are waiting for their mommas.  It brought back all the memories and sorrow that we have endured, but how the knowledge that we have of the Atonement, has made the experience less painful.  It was like she said at Dillan's private blessing when he was a newborn (and his mom forgot that the time changed for sacrament meeting EVERY January 1st and sent out the wrong information to all my family and friends.  I thought it was going to be a disaster, but ended up being one of the most spiritual experiences of my life), and she said in her testimony how blessed we were as friends to let time pass (then it was probably a few months, not several years!) and how we would always be connected and be able to have an enduring friendship.  Kim has changed me, and For Good, as the song in Wicked says, she'll always be with me "like a hand print on my heart."  I am so blessed to have her as my friend.  I hope to be the kind of friend and person that she is with such unwavering faith and pure joy.  I love you, Kimmy!
Oh, and the picture.  We must have been going out on a date or somewhere that we were a little dressy, and we asked our roommate, Heidi, to take our picture.  She gave us a "One, two, three" and then passed the LOUDEST gas, ever.  This picture captured our reaction.  It always makes me smile.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

The Summer in Review

Let's be honest here, people.  It's STILL summer here.  Just because the kids have started school doesn't mean that it's nice and lovely weather.  I'm going to petition that school start in the beginning of October and go six days a week until the end of April.  Just a thought.
So this summer vacation raced by.  Here's a sample of what happened.  And don't bother thanking me for putting it all together in one tidy little blog instead of dragging it out over two months. 

Swim team:  Olivia was very nervous to swim in her first meet and was in tears the night before because she couldn't bear the thought of coming in last place.  Her first event, she got first place, and continued to dominate those 6 and unders.  She came in 6th place in the for the division championships for butterfly, which was out of probably 60 swimmers.  She has postponed her swimming career this fall in order to pursue her career as a gymnast/dancer.  Dillan broke his wrist two weeks before championships, so he competed, but it was apparent that it affected his racing.  Chloe did very well and got 6th in IM and 2nd in breast stroke for championships.  Can I get a woot woot?  Actually, I only deserve the woot woot because I was the driver to and from and to and from swim.  The swimming ability and coaching has very little to do with me.  Here is a sample of Chloe's swimming in the Finals for the Title of Division Championship for the 9-10 year old Girls in the 25 m Breast Stroke:
video
We went to Utah for three lovely weeks. I love Utah in the summer. And it seemed like we were there for a much shorter period of time than three weeks, probably because we were going here and there and having a grand time. We saw everyone we could squeeze in, and still, we didn't get to see everyone. I will try to recapture the fun in a photo essay shown here:
 Fun at Grandma's with a Marshmallow Shooter.  I opted to not use the fancy device and tried to hit the kids with a marshmallow shooting out of my mouth.  I think I was a better shot with that than the actual shooter.
 Chloe and Malia at the Reese Family Reunion.  Unfortunately, Olivia and I were two hours late for the event and missed chatting with most of the cousins.  Another unfortunate thing was that someone broke in to my parents and sister Jen's minivans!  We were in Davis County on the 24th of July!  Don't robbers take the day off?
 Two beautiful nieces, Tiana and Kailee. 
 Sisters picture.  Uh, Kellie, the color scheme for the day was peach.
 Olivia on a rope swing at Heritage Park.
 Blake getting a shave at Heritage Park.
Funeral luncheon after Kevin's Aunt Linda's funeral.  Notice the dress I am wearing.  It is the ONLY one I brought for the three weeks thinking that I would only have to wear it three times to three different churches.  Well, I was WRONG.  There were four other events where I needed to wear a dress.  And one of them was the next day with the same group of people!  I warned them ahead of time that I did have other dresses.  But after I thought about it, I felt like a Pioneer Woman who only had one dress and didn't complain.  I tried to hold out and not get another dress while I was there, but when I saw a dress that was too good to pass up, I couldn't resist. 
Other events worth noting:  I spent the most wonderful afternoon/evening with my former roommate from college, Kim, which I will blog about separately, and I had a lovely evening out with Julie.  We are planning on celebrating our birthdays together on a girls WEEKEND.  Just the thought of that will get me through tomorrow.  And I had a double exercise day when I went to see my friend, Kami, who I have known since I was five (don't do the math, please).  We picked her kids up from school via bicycles and jogging stroller.  Then there was a huge hill and of course, what child can resist rolling down a hill?  Olivia and Blake certainly couldn't.  That was such a fun day.  Herriman is the happening place to be.  When I was growing up, I was so jealous of Kami's super long ponytails.  I wanted my hair to be that long, but my mom never wanted to take care of long hair, so I never got the chance.  Sigh. 
That's what I can remember so far.  If there is anything noteworthy, I will try to remember it.  For those of you who give me a hard time about not blogging more often, I'll have you know, I blog ALL OF THE TIME in my head.  I wish there was a way that I could think up a blog and it would already be there and I wouldn't have to sit and put it all together, like this.  Then I would be a much more prolific blogger.  And since I'm making requests for things that will never happen, I would also like books that I don't have to sit down and read, ones that all of the information just goes right into my head and I know it and act on it, because I have been spending way too much time reading.  I know, because I have gotten complaints.  I'm not saying who from.