Imagine what you could do if you knew you could not fail.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Nothing Wrong With a Good Laugh

Thank you, Demi, for bringing this to my attention. It was EXACTLY what I needed tonight!!!

I've always loved improv and I think it would be absolutely awesome if I ever had the chance to be in a group like this. I was really in need of a good laugh when I went blog surfing and here was this! It's a group in NYC called Improv Everywhere. Their site is thoroughly entertaining! (don't forget to pause the music at the bottom of my blog before watching)

Here is another great one. :) I hope these made you laugh as much as Jeremy and I did!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Another Wedding in the Family

Well, Athena and Samantha were at it again - this time with better props! They love to play wedding, and with two such willing candidates it becomes a perfect afternoon past time. :)

Yesterday afternoon Athena and Samantha dressed up Nathan and Alexandra for their wedding game. Athena was in charge of getting Nathan ready and Samantha worked on Alex. It was so cute because after Athena got Nathan ready as the groom, he just walked around the house in his suit patiently waiting for his bride and trying to keep his clothes nice.

Samantha was in the bathroom with Alexandra for about 20 minutes working on her! They were so quiet that I didn't even know they were in there until Athena came to tell me that Samantha kept spraying stuff on Alexandra's hair. Come to find out, she was doing hair and makeup and sprayed so much hair spray that Alex practically had a helmet head. At least her "do" didn't budge.

I let Athena and Samantha use the camera and my flip video camera to capture the wedding. This is what they came up with.

Here is Nathan's groom shot. What a handsome boy!

Next comes the bridal photos. I'll include just a couple. Samantha took great care with posing the bride.

Of course we have to have a romantic pre-wedding shot. (keeping in mind that Athena and Samantha are setting all these up and making sure they look JUST RIGHT)

Another picture of the bride. Isn't she lovely? Seriously, we should be running our own business by now!

Now we take it to the side of the yard for the proceedings.

Samantha helped them take their vows while Athena shot a video.

Getting ready to seal the deal.

Making it final.

If you would like to see it all in action, pause the music at the bottom of the blog and watch this little video. It also includes a little post-wedding action.

When I was uploading this video I showed it to the kids and they were laughing so hard! I guess this was a keeper. Funny kids! I guess the best part about this is that they used their creativity, they worked together, and I got a couple of hours of not-fighting kids! Um . . . until the very end, but STILL!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Grafton Ghost Town

We had talked about visiting a ghost town while we were on our trip. Apparently there are several in the area. We chose to go to Grafton Ghost Town. It's not too far off the main road to Zion's. This is the bridge we crossed to get there. I thought it was neat.

All the kids were freaked out about going to a "ghost town". From the time we started our trip they kept on asking about the ghost town and whether or not we were going to one. They kept asking what is was going to be like and were scaring themselves just by bringing it up constantly. On the way to the ghost town is this really old cemetery. Jeremy and I wanted to stop and look at some of the grave stones, but the kids refused to get out. We left them in the car and went to take a quick look.

It was fascinating to look at the old markers and imagine what those people were like. Some of them had lost all their children, some were killed by indians, some had crossed the plains as pioneers. While we were looking through the cemetery, Athena and Samantha started yelling out to us from the car saying, "Hurry up! Come back Mom and Dad!!!" When we were done we came back to the car and I said, "Why do you need us to come back?" Athena and Samantha were so scared because we were at the cemetery by a GHOST TOWN. It was windy and they thought they could hear ghosts and that something was going to come and get them.

We got in and drove the rest of the way to the actual town. They didn't want to get out there either. I explained that these buildings were built by people who lived here for awhile and then moved on to different places. That's why it's a called a ghost town, because they left their buildings behind and moved somewhere else. Jeremy and I got out and none of the kids wanted to come see the buildings. Then, I think they liked the prospect of sitting in the car without parents even less, so they all jumped out and trailed behind us in a clump o' kids.

This is an old home that was actually lived in until 1945. We weren't able to go inside any of the buildings, but we could peek in the windows. It looked pretty neat inside and it also looked like someone has been in there doing work, trying to fix it up.

After walking around the buildings for a little bit and peeking in the windows, the kids got over their fears and were actually excited to be there. We sat for awhile and talked about what life would have been like when there were a lot of people living here and how it would be to live here ourselves. Here we are on the porch. :)

Here is another old building on the property. I think this one was a home too.

This is the schoolhouse. From the side we could peek in the windows of this building too. It looked pretty neat - wish we could go inside!

I like this picture because it looks so pretty with the mountain in the background!

Overall there were only 4 main buildings. This one was built away from the other ones and is another house. We also saw some foundations of buildings that were no longer standing. We can only imagine when this was a bustling settlement.

When we were done looking at everything, the kids didn't want to go. Funny how they warm up to something as the experience is ending! They even asked if we could go to another ghost town. On our way back to the main road we stopped at the cemetery again because the kids wanted to get out this time and look at everything. They ended up having fun going around reading all the grave stones and the information posted in the cemetery. I'm glad it turned out to be a good experience instead of a miserable memory.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Hiking in Zion's

I have SO MANY pictures so I'll break up our trip a little. We went to Zion National Park the day after we arrived in St. George. This was my 2nd time visiting Zion's and it was still just as beautiful. Athena and Samantha vaguely remembered it from the last time but for the 2 little kids it was ALL new.
For our first hike, we chose to go on the Emerald Pools hike. Here we are getting fueled for our hike. I decided we'd better eat the bananas first. I didn't want them to get smashed in our backpacks and there are garbages for our peels here. I told the kids, "When your bananas are gone we will start our hike!" They gobbled those bananas faster than I've ever seen. :)

Here is our family at the beginning of our hike.

Zion's is absolutely amazing! My job as mom is to try to get the kids to appreciate it all. We had to stop all along the way and enjoy our surroundings.

I'm leading the pack.

The kids really loved this part of the hike. This waterfall comes down from the middle emerald pool and the trail we were on goes right under it. At first Nathan and Alexandra were really nervous about walking under the waterfall, until they realized they weren't actually getting hit with the water. Well, occasionally the wind blew the water onto us, but just a mist.

Here is the view from under the waterfall. It doesn't show as well in the picture, but it looked really sparkly, like diamonds falling from the sky!

Pshwew! We made it out from under the water - except for what is still blowing our way. All the kids really quite enjoyed themselves.

This is about halfway on our hike to the top. The temperature was PERFECT the whole time.

When we reached the upper emerald pool it was lunch time. I had pre-made sandwiches before we left in the morning and put them in this bag in our backpack. I DID warn the kids that the sandwiches wouldn't be beautiful by lunchtime, but that they would still taste the same. Well, here is proof that the sandwiches WEREN'T beautiful! I pulled them out and they were all mashed into one big sandwich ball in the breadbag!! I had to pry them apart!

There was another lady sitting by us and she heard me tell the kids that the sandwiches still tasted the same even if they are smashed. She pulled out her smashed sandwich and showed the kids. That seemed to suffice and they started eating their lunch. The funny thing is that with all the warnings I gave them, I think I had the hardest time eating the sandwich. I had to literally gag it down! I prefer fluffy bread, even if it does taste the same either way.
After lunch we wandered over to the pools to enjoy their beauty. This waterfall comes into the upper pool. It was a little windy so again, we kept getting a little wet. That was amusing for the kids to try to avoid the spray. :)
Here is Nathan climbing on the rocks. I think that was his favorite part of this hike - all the rocks to climb on and jump off of. He was SO PROUD of himself for being able to hike so well on the rocks.

Athena and Samantha stuck together, as usual. I love to see them being such great friends!

Same with these two. Alex really loves to stay with her big brother. It's so cute. :)

You'll have to click on this picture and see if you can find "it". Much to the kid's amusement, there were water skeeters in the water. They found one in here. Can you?

Thank you, other tourists, for taking pictures of our family all along the way!

Mama's boy!

Me and my wonderfully gorgeous husband!! Athena quite enjoyed being our photographer.

Here is Samantha, on our way back down the mountain.

Athena picked this location for her single picture. I think she did well on her choice of backgrounds!

Thanks again, other tourist. :)
Of course Jeremy had to show us up and climb to the top! I'm just glad he made it down safely. That makes me nervous!!

When we were almost done hiking down (about 1 1/2 hours into our "journey"), Alex started acting frantic and saying she NEEDED to go potty. My only choice was to find a little spot off the trail in the bushes for her and hope nobody noticed! Jeremy took that opportunity to take some cute photos of the kids.

Next emergency, a shoe full of rocks and sand.

So, more cute picture opportunities! While I was helping Alex with her shoe, Jeremy and the other kids found this really neat rock wall with all these carved out formations.

Another nice tourist saw us climbing up here and offered to take a family picture for us. In return we took a picture of she and her daughter. We ended up making friends with this lady because for the rest of the day, she was everywhere we went.

As they can see, it's a LONG way down.

We made it to the end of our hike in just a little over 2 hours with 4 happy kids. To me, that is amazing! They all had fun overall with just a few fights here and there. Alexandra kept herself busy by singing the last little while.

When we got to the bottom Jeremy spotted a lizard to catch (like he always does). He likes to turn them over and rub their bellies because the lizards go to sleep. This was his first lizard to catch for the day.

After the hike, we stopped at the visitor's center for a kid pick-me-up. We all ate ice cream cones! Then we boarded the bus and rode further up the canyon for more beautiful views.

For our last hike we walked along the river on the river walk. It goes all the way up to the end of The Narrows hike. Alexandra's legs were tired so Jeremy and I took turns carrying her. I got to carry Nathan too for awhile. On the bright side, I think I burned off the ice cream I ate! Here are the kids inspecting a bug.

Here is our view at the end of our river walk hike. Pretty!
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