Saturday, May 29, 2010

Zion National Park

Today we got up and had a bit of breakfast in our hotel room (homemade muffins that I brought from home and mini-cereals that the kids ate out of cups with milk that we bought at the store last night. Breakfast at our hotel would have cost us $60...WHAAATTT???).

We threw on some hiking clothes and runners and then it was time to go explore the canyons. We took two trails and played in a creek. I'll just go through the day with the pictures.

This is at the trailhead for Riverside Trail which allows you to walk through the Narrows. However, the river was up and too strong so we did not get to continue once you have to walk into the river. Boo to that! But what a beautiful hike on a nice paved trail.

We tried to get a bunch of pictures of everyone holding up walls and such. This is the only one that looks like it might actually be happening. Isn't our SuperHero Jagger so sweet to hold this rock out of our way for us!!

Okay, so there is a sign at the trailhead that says feeding wildlife will cost you a $100 fine. I don't think anyone has read this sign but me. These squirrels were bound and determine to jack some food from somebody! And they were evil looking. One chased James and he ran away screaming like a girl! Soo funny!

I never get tired of seeing Kaylee and James side by side when they both seem happy about it.

The views were spectacular!

Jimmy enjoys scaring the crap out of me. One false move and he would have been river debris!

Kaylee can find comfort anywhere.

So, after the first trail we went on another called Weeping Rock. It was only a half mile return hike. On the way we saw a deer in the clearing. I looked down to get my camera and when I looked back up I couldn't find the deer. Everyone else, and I mean there was a crowd, was like "it's still right there." Kaylee had to take the picture. Finally some nice gentleman got in front of me and said I was looking too far left and showed me where it was. I felt like such an airhead!

Ya, so I LOVE this picture!

Taking our picture at the top of the Weeping Rock trail.

Another spectacular view.

Back at the trailhead for the Weeping Rock was a creek for the kids to play in. While we were playing some boys came down with a small frog. When their families called them they gave the frog to James to play with.

I love these next two pics of James.

James' friend, the frog.

Great picture of Jagger before he fell in the water....

New favorite pic of Kaylee.

I do love brother pictures.

And this would be my very sad Jagger after he fell in the water!!

Jagger always wants to climb trees and they are always too big for him. He finally found a tree trunk that was just his size!

Doesn't this look like a HUGE FRIGGIN BLUEBIRD??? maybe not from that angle! But I swear it did from mine! I was talking to Jimmy and when I turned around I saw his stupid water bottle sitting there and thought it was a bluebird on steroids and totally freaked out! My husband thought this was hysterical of course and promptly took pictures!

After our 4 hours at the Canyon we headed back to the hotel for a couple of hours of swimming. We got nicely toasted and then showered, dressed and headed off to Oscar's for dinner where we had some amazingly good hamburgers with surprisingly delicious sweet potato fries. On a side note...Jimmy had the Whoopass burger which is described to have jalapenoes, lettuce, tomatoes, more jalapenoes, green they not realize that I have to share a hotel room with only one bathroom with this man??!!
It was a great day. I think everyone will sleep well. We will try to get one more hike in after breakfast and then we will head out for our 5 hour drive to Anaheim. The kids sure are excited to get to Disneyland on Monday morning!

The Dreaded Drive

The Dreaded Drive was not so dreadful afterall! We were a bit worried because we decided not to bring the TVs (half the DVDs are scratched and I didn't feel like listening to the kids fight over what broken movie they got to watch!). The kids did great.. They played their DSs, had naps (well, not James of course!) and enjoyed looking out the window at all of the scenery.

Here are some pics of us having fun in the car...

Leaving one state and entering another is always very exciting. We make a big deal out of it and the kids love looking for the signs.

And once we got into Utah we couldn't believe how monotonous these beautiful rocks could become. Jim and I think this state must have the lowest population...crazy how long it took us to get to a small town and how far in between the towns are. The rocks provided some fun though...we played the cloud game and made shapes out of the formations. I won't bore you with the millions of pics I took of them but here are a couple.

After 10 hours we made it to our hotel (Best Western at Zion-BEAUTIFUL!). The kids immediately had us in our swimsuits and off for a pre-dinner swim. It was lovely to be in an outdoor pool in such nice surroundings.

After our swim we went to the Flying Monkey for dinner. We actually got to walk there...that doesn't happen very often! They also had an amazing BBQ pork pizza loaded with cilantro that I think I will remember for the rest of my life...PHENOMENAL!!

It was a great day considering the long drive. I'm really starting to enjoy the advantages of having older children. Much more fun to travel with!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Vacation Bound!

I am sooo super excited. Our little family of 5 headed out on a big family vacation tomorrow. It's been a long time since we've done a real vacation that didn't include visiting family somewhere. We will head to Zion National Park for this weekend. Then we keep driving to Anaheim and all that is Disneyland for 5 days. We will end the vacation with a weekend in San Diego. And then it will be a long drive home with a tired but happy family (this is what I suspect anyways!).

All my children have gotten to choose where we go on family vacation for the year they turn 5. Kaylee chose Disney World. James chose San Antonio and Sea World. And now this vacation is Jagger's choice.

I'm really looking forward to getting away and exploring new territory. All the kids are so big now and this vacation should be different from any of the ones in the past. There are no strollers. No diapers. Nobody needs to take a nap in the afternoon. What an awesome celebration of all of my children growing up this will be.

Of course we'll have the lap top and camera. I'll try to update the blog every night so I don't end up being overwhelmed at the end of the trip.


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Jagger's Birthday Lunch

Today we had Jagger's birthday lunch since we will be in Disneyland during his actual birthday. We invited our Life Group, our neighbors and Jagger's favorite friend's (Evan) family. It was a beautiful day and the kids had lots of fun running around while us parents chatted, hung out and ate too much food as usual.

Jagger got the new favorite in our house..homemade ice cream cake. This one was made with Rocky Road, Heath, M&Ms, and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. Yummmmmyyy!!

The excitement of waiting for the cake to come out....

Jagger LOVED everyone singing Happy Birthday to him!

Jagger wished out loud that he could have all the super hero powers. Best wish ever!

And all of the adults waiting patiently for leftovers...

Matt and Jules.


Opening presents...

Aren't these the cutest princesses you ever did see?!!

Jules and Bill.

Tom and a ready-to-pop-at-any-minute Amy!

Me and my Kay!

Candice and Harley.

Go Matt you neck hula hooping Rockstar!

HA HA! Kaylee's face is priceless!

James and his Ms. Twiss.

Jimmy and Reese.

Dude..that guy is HOTT!

Trying to get a good picture of Claire..she will have no part of it!

Playing with the new toys.

Co and Matt.
What a fun day filled with lots of love and friends!

Happy 5th Birthday my Jagger!