Thursday, July 23, 2009
On Monday I went with my sister-in-law and one of her friends to float down the Toutle River. I had to purchase a float which I wasn't real excited about but very happy once I went down the river. We had the 2 tubes inflated and then the little tube for the cooler all ready to go. I just bought mine on the way out of town so it was still in the box. We brought my dad's pump that hooks up to your cig. adapter in the car. We drop off the car at the lower part of the river where we will get out and then drove to the upper river area where we would get in at.
We get out start getting ready and then realize the pump will not blow up my float. BUMMER! We drive back down the road to the first gas station we come to (maybe like 4-6 miles). They don't have any air. We drive back to the freeway which is another 4-6 miles and find air. It cost 75 cents. I find quarters. We have to do it 2 times to get the raft totally inflated. We drive back up to the river where we want to get in at.
All goes well. Sarah and Natalie tell me that the Toutle is so much warmer than the Cowlitz which they have both floated before. As I am jumping into my raft, I have that catching your breath, can't breath because the water is SO cold feeling. I am thinking, this is NOT warm. Okay, so later it is pretty warm. It ends up feeling really nice.
There are many areas that the river kind of forks so we were trying to decide which way is best to go. We found some ways NOT to go, as we are dragging our bums across the rocks in the shallow area. We hit some nice sized rocks in other areas of the river too when the water wasn't so shallow but just a rock or two where poking up a bit.
When we got in the water, the girls where putting on sun screen. They asked if I wanted some, "no I prefer to burn," I joked back to them and never did get sun screen on. I paid for that later, still am really.
The float was absolutely gorgeous! I wish we had a camera! It was beautiful. We saw a big bald eagle, and a young one, and then two together soaring around the sky. We joked that they were trying to see if we were dead or not or they were waiting for us to die. They lucked out, we didn't die.
We hit some good rapids too. One that totally suprised me when we came to it. I saw it but it didn't look that bad until I was at the top of it looking down. It totally splashed over all of us, and turned my tube on the side. The other girls' tubes went under water. We were all tied together so we kind of all went the same place. It was fun that way and in other areas maybe would have been better to be untied, like at the end when they rammed me into a rock! Sarah thought I was going to come shooting over the rock, and I am glad I didn't! I think I would have fallen off my tube.
Much of the river was just slow moving, and then there were some parts where it was just bumpy and wavy. We had some parts that were good rapids too that were really fun. There wasn't wasn't ever any part of the river that was like scary or that I was afraid. There is a spot where there is an old bridge that is down and some wood in the banks of the river side that you have to miss. We got out and walked there and put in our rafts after that spot where there are already 2 rafts deflated and stuck in the wood fence looking parts.
I was hoping to get to do it again, but it took 4 hours just to float it. It takes a little bit to get to the places to park your car, then you have to go back and get the other car too. The 4 hours was just the river time. If you paddled you might be able to make it faster.
A few times we almost lost our cooler too, which had some keys in it for the car. I had my key tied to my shirt string. I noticed the cooler after the biggest rapid we hit, I noticed it was all sitting sideways. We fixed it and then realized that it wasn't tied on anymore, the clip on the rope had broken. Shortly after that I noticed the cooler upside down in the water in the middle of another rapids spot. I grabbed it and could feel the cold ice water rushing out of it. Luckily all items where in tact in the cooler. We had to beach our rafts to redo the cooler.
I have bruises on the under parts of my upper arms and around my elbows from paddling or steering our group of rafts at different times. As we got out of the river at 5pm (we got in at about 1pm) I noticed my legs felt like they were on fire. I also had noticed a bit before that they were a little red. Yeah I should of used sunscreen. Later that evening I was wearing my church skirt and then wore it the next day too. I looked pretty funny with a skirt and tennis shoes while I was out with the horses while the girls rode them. Today I am wearing shorts, but they are loose shorts. I did notice a little blister on the top of my leg. I am sure it is the only spot though. They do feel better today, even though they don't feel great. You would think I would learn from all my sunburns and use SUN SCREEN! Next time, I will for sure!
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Isn't she beautiful. I mean she is just in regular clothes here, but you should see her all dressed up and ready to go out. WOW! She has some amazing pictures as a young lady, she was stunning then too! My dad always tells her how beautiful she is. It's a compliment to me when people tell me I look like my mom.
We celebrated her birthday a day earlier since most of the family was going to the beach on her birthday and the California visitors where still here and weren't all that interested in going to the beach in Washington at the cold ocean and cold weather. (It really ended up being a pretty windy yucky day at the beach but at least my girls had fun.)
My mom is such a wonderful lady. She is always thinking of others. She has done so many things for our family both when all of us 7 kids where growing up and even now that most of us have our own families. She will put her needs and wants on hold to help any of us out. She doesn't complain about all she does for us. I think of all the farm animals that she feeds and cares for. She is such a great example to me. She has taught me so many things that you can't learn from a book. She has taught me patience and the ability to keep on going even when you want to give up. She is the one that will listen to me and even be on my side if I have a grumble about something that I don't think is fair or when I want to complain about something. She reminds me of the whole purpose of life, and how our family is always number one in importance. She is always reminding me to take time for myself and the kids will still be just fine. She is like that burst of energy you get at night and decide to tackle some big project. She is strong. She is wise. I remember those days when I didn't think maybe she understood what I was talking about or what I was going through when I was going through a hard time. I learned that if I would have only listened or if I wasn't so caught up in ME then I would have realized she had some wisdom to share that would have made things better or easier or maybe just given me hope that I needed. Only if myself at 16 would have really listened a little more like her mother, I would have too been more wise. At least I have that wisdom now.
My mom is always helping other people... babysitting or taking care of their animals, or playing the piano for them are just a few off the top of my head. I was talking to her on the phone one time when she was telling me about some kids she was babysitting... she has started crying telling me she helps out young families in her area in hopes that those blessings will come to my family so far away, or so that maybe someone else will do the same things for my family. I think sometimes that is a hard thing for her to be so far away and not be able to help more. Her mom was always close to help out and I am the second one that has been long distance and having a young family. My mom is selfless. She would help someone else out even if it set her back a abit. She is an amazing lady. She has molded the women I am today... she has helped me become who I am.
I wish we could have done something amazing for my mom for her birthday... I didn't even get her a gift. I did call her and wish her a happy birthday... Funny thing, she thought it was my sister who was sitting outside... and I was in my dad's office calling her from his cell phone. We love to play with her. She takes it so well. She has a pretty good sense of humor as well. Such an amazing mom should have a super birthday.... but I guess she had all her family there, minus one sister and that had to be okay too. Happy Birthday to my beautiful Mom! I love you Mom, you mean the world to me!
Technically, I guess my parents really don't have cats. The cats at Pony Poop Farm use to be my cats, but when I moved to Utah we were renting a house and they didn't allow cats. I had to leave my cats here. It wasn't until like 3 years later when we could have a cat when we bought our first house. By then we had Emily and I was afraid the cats would adjust well and we ended up getting a kitten from the vet that was a rescued kitten.
My kids will ask me how do you know which cat is which. They both look quite alike, Chaquita is Scooter's mom. I tell them that Scooter has a bigger head and Chaquita has BIG scared eyes. Her eyes are always huge looking.
Amber noticed one day that there was a cat on Grandma and Grandpa's bed. It was Scooter! And he didn't even run away. The cats actually have been quite strange and have been coming out more since we have been here. Chiquita comes out looking for me in the mornings and at nights. Scooter even comes to my room at nights sometimes.
Amber came in one day with a grumpy look on her face. She said, "Scooter bit my forehead in the closet." I went and looked and sure enough Scooter was sleeping in Grandma's closet in her room and Amber must have been too pushy with him and he bit her on her head and maybe even clawed her. He isn't real good with kids. My mom was trying to tell Amber that she doesn't have any cats, that the cats are my cats. Amber kept telling her, "no your cat scratched me." Amber is so funny!
Most the time the cats are hiding, but when the girls get a peek at the cats somewhere they think it is pretty neat. It is even better if they can pet their super soft fur. I will try to grab the cat and bring it into them so they can pet it. It works sometimes and other times, I just get a back full of scratches as they peel out over my shoulder and down my back to get away from the girls.
Tonight Amber crawled up on the bed with Scooter and layed down in the bed and Scooter didn't even budge. Earlier this week Amber was sleeping in Grandma's bed and Scooter came to sleep with her on the bed too.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
I went out with them a few times, and then their cousin Julia went with them and so did their aunt Tracy.
Aunt Tracy and the girls jumping the waves.
Amber watching the big girls and Aunt Tracy.
Amber is seeing what they are doing out there, but doesn't end up staying long. She comes back at the next wave.
Almost all of my sisters went with the exception of my sister Becky who we couldn't get a hold of. My brothers didn't go, they both had other things going, Scott was in Vegas and Kelly had a service project he already committed to.
The girls loved the sand, making thing out of it and just picking it up and watching it fall out of their hands. Samantha picked up a handful of sand and ate it. I washed it off and told her "yucky!" Later she did it again, and then right after she was told no, she did it again. Maybe she needed a little sand in her digestive system, chickens eat things to help them digest things better, maybe my Sammy is like a little chicken.
Uncle Larry built some parts of a sand castle. That didn't last long, both Amber and Samantha knocked them down.
You can see how hard the wind is blowing with how the girls hair is going so crazy.
Samantha liked crawling everywhere. She thought it was great!
Uncle Larry also gave Amber a ride on their boogy board, but only on the sand.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Lindsey got this old doll with a really fancy old style dress on. She has a fancy hat and fancy jewely. She got it from Grandma Hayes. The doll lost her necklace. It had like a ring of little pearl looking beads around a colored pearl in the middle. Then attached to that was a little suede strap to make it look like a necklace.
Lindsey asked me, "Mom, can you fix her necklace, it fell off." I was looking at the doll and what was left of her necklace, trying to see if it was pinned on or glued or just what. As I was pulling Lindsey told me not to break her broach. I told her it was part of her necklace. Lindsey argued that it was a broach and then a necklace. I told her it was all part of the necklace. I told her a broach is like a fancy pin that is on like a safety pin that goes on your jacket or collar or something like that. Then Lindsey looks at the doll, and says, "Why would anyone wear a pokey broach on ther chest like that?" I looked at Lindsey and said, "IT IS NOT A BROACH!" Lindsey was laughing and then I realized she was teasing me.
Emily was sleeping in the big bed. At my parents house, they have a bedroom that has a set of bunk beds and then a full size bed. When Robert isn't here then I have one of the girls sleep in the bed and then I sleep with that girl. Emily is the worse to sleep with since she has such long legs and arms, she seems to never give me enough room to sleep. This night, Emily was all sprawled out. I came to bed, tried to move her and kind of woke her up to tell her to move. She says, "I don't think it is going to work. (mumble mumble) I really don't think it will work out. The stars are all stuck together. Yeah it won't work. The stars are stuck together." As I was listening I was trying to figure out what she was saying... then I asked her to repeat herself. I heard pretty much the same thing, something about it not working and the stars being stuck together. I asked her about it the next morning, she kind of laughed and said, I had a really weird dream last night but can't remember it. I am guessing the stars where stuck together somewhere in there. She frequently will talk in her sleep. One time she was just shooting out random numbers, "13, 4, 78, 6, 12, 41, 9, ...."
I have posted a few things of what we have been doing here but thought I would give more details on some of the other things. It seems like our trip goes so fast and after we are back home I forget all the fun things that we did. I thought this would be great to remind myself and the girls of the things we did this trip.
One thing I failed to mention was on 4th of July, Lauren was still afraid of the loud noises and also afraid some of the fireworks might land on her so she stayed in the house and looked out the window. At one point she tried laying on a blanket on the ground with her Uncle Kelly, then she tried sitting in her Aunt Tracy's truck and finally went inside. I think she had more fun following the dogs around in the house especially the two that climbed into the tub to hide from the noises.
One of the reasons we decided to come up here to WA during this time was that two of my dad's brothers from California would be here too. My Uncle Buzz (along with wife Aunt Nancy) and my Uncle Wayne (and wife Aunt Phyllis). My dad's family is so fun to get together with. They crack me up. It reminds me much of how I feel when my family gets together... Lots of laughing and joking around! Aunt Nancy is normally the group chef, or is it cook. She was telling us she was one of them... she was saying one of them makes the meals and cleans up, and then the other just makes the meals. She was stating that she is the one that only makes the meals and DOES NOT clean up. She is a GREAT meal maker no matter what she calls herself cook or chef!
The funniest thing was when we got up here, Robert brought his running shoes and clothes so he could run up here to get ready for his WA Ragnar Relay Race he is doing the 24th or July. On Friday I think it was, he went running, came back showered and realized he didn't bring any underwear except for the ones he wore here. LOL Previously we realized he didn't bring church clothes or shoes, but he got his black church socks. We missed church that first Sunday we were here. It was somewhat nice since the kids were tired from the trip up and then being up later for the 4th fireworks. When Rob would go running, I would wash his underwear. He also ended up doing hay for my mom twice in the same weekend.
I took Robert to the airport on Sunday, dropped him off. I was able to go see my friend Jennifer and her ADORABLE twins (boy/girl). They are just the cutest! Her kids are about a month and a week older than Samantha I think. Her little boy Carter kept grabbing my finger and wanting me to take a walk with him. Her daughter Ellie, wasn't as friendly toward me, but did warm up a bit. I sure wish I was closer, I think our kids would be great friends and I would love to do more with her and her little family!
My brother Kelly's son, Thomas was at his other Grandma and Papa's and wasn't here when we first got here. He ended up coming on Wednesday I think. My girls were pretty excited especially Emily who is the same age and Amber too. Amber loves boys that age. She still tells me at night, "Tomorrow I am going to Jacob's house." She still loves her little Jacob that was on our street at our old house. Now Amber will say, "Where did Thomas go?" when she can't find him or after he has gone back home.
The girls are having VIP sleep over at Grandma and Grandpa Hayes'. They are packing up to move to UT, and I think it works great to have that one on one time with the girls and the girls of course love it. One girl at a time goes and stays with them overnight and then I switch the next day. Lauren was the first to go over. Samantha and Amber will not be having a turn.
My parents and my Aunt Nancy, Uncle Buzz, his son Gene, and then their grandaughter Drelan went to see Mt. St. Helens. I debated on going, the girls really like to go but I didn't want to take the little ones. Then I thought if I didn't go then we could go over to the Hayes' and hang out there a little bit. We ended up going over there and having dinner and dropping off Lauren for the first VIP sleep over. They also went to Lewis and Clark State Park I think, or close by. There is an old growth forest there with a walking path through it. Emily went with them for that.
We have been burning the midnight oil by playing Mexican Train (domino game) I think it is called. I had played it before along time ago with our friends Nathan and Adrian at their cabin but it has been literally years. I think Emily was just a baby at the time or maybe she wasn't even born yet. That is how long it has been. But I really like the game. We start the train with the double 12 and play all the way through to the double blank. Several nights we will end at like 1:30 am. It is normally no big deal for others, but my little Samantha has been getting up about 7 am every morning if not earlier. Amber a few times has woken up at 6:30 am too. Although the other day I took almost a 3 hour nap. I may have been able to keep sleeping, but I noticed it was almost 2 pm and we were going to go riding at 2.
The girls rode horses again today. My mom, her niece, and me went for a ride this evening when it cooled off a bit and then let the kids ride in the field. Lindsey stayed the night at Grandma and Grandpa Hayes' so she missed out on riding.
Samantha is getting really close to walking. She can do it, but just isn't brave enough to let go to do it on her own. I can trick her into it sometimes and she takes a few steps and then realizes what she is doing and down she goes to sit down on the floor.
I can't think of anything else to report on that I haven't already done. Oh yes, except for my neice Renee had her baby. That will have to be a post all in itself. I have some pictures to post on that one for sure.
I guess that will be it for tonight, and now I feel like I can go to bed!
Thursday, July 16, 2009
She named her baby Conrad Nathan. Her father's name was Nathan, he has passed on already. What a beautiful baby he is!
My sister who is the baby's Grandma, was saying that he didn't even really cry. They tried to get him to cry a few times and even with his bath, he was just alert and looking around.
My neice will have her hands full as all new moms do as they try to figure out what to do and when to do it all. I know she will be a wonderful mom and fit right into the whole motherhood part of her life now.
Here is Conrad with his new Uncle Jordan. Conrad has so many to love him, and I know he will be so loved too!
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Emily loves to do things like this. She got some wood from my dad and then painted it with water colors. She started out with 2 shoe boxes, made holes and used paper clips and paper towels and cotton balls, staples. She used the scraps of material I had left over.
My Uncle Buzz told her she should put a "For Sale" sign on it with her Grandpa's name and number on there. (Grandpa is in realistate) Emily quickly said it wasn't for sale! He told her that she could get a lot for it since it had a swing in the room. She still didn't want to sell it.
Later she made a 3rd floor and also found another shoe box and made a backyard to play out on. I guess this is something else we will have to find room for when we drive back home.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
We still have makings for more Smores, maybe we will do them again while we are here! If someone doesn't eat all the chocolate first!!
Sunday, July 12, 2009
My sisters where teasing me saying that I had to ride them since everyone has to ride them when they go... last time my other sister had to do it... and now it was my turn. (Little did they know if I got on one I might not get off!)
My sister gave me a ride and a riding lesson all in one. Then I was off on my own. Pretty fun! The bad thing is then my girls wanted a ride, so then I didn't get to go back out by MYSELF! Okay so I could have, I just felt like I was already hogging them too much and I didn't want to go AGAIN after giving 6 rides for my girls!
Here the girls are (minus Lindsey) hanging out. They all got pretty wet from the water splashing them on the shore so they were trying to dry out. Emily was getting a headache from the sun and squinting, so my brother gave her his sunglasses. They look kind of cute on her.
This is just for a photo shot... we didn't really ride like this. I was just coming in with Emily and then my sister suggested we all get on to get a family picture... of course minus Robert now.
Here are some of the cousins that went with us in there little boat. Amber was calling it "her" yellow boat. She wanted to be in it, but only on dry land. She tried it once on the water and it was too scary for her. She just wanted to pretend she was floating in the water when it was really on the grass.
Here we are switching riders. My sister and her friend are there in the water helping make the switch. (And Amber's little yellow boat out there too.)
Saturday, July 11, 2009
My dad was talking to a friend of his in WA about Emily and her love for rocks... he is an "amiture" is what he calls himself but he has fossils or rocks (I can't remember which, or maybe it is both) on display in national museums. He said there was a place nearby that you can dig your own fossils. Emily was so excited about it and was wanting to go do it. Finally it was all planned out and they were off to dig some fossils.
Unfortunately, he hadn't been there in a little while and everything was all grown up so he couldn't find the place he was looking for. It was suppose to be like a mile hike to the location, but they didn't ever find the right place.
This rockhound, he brought Emily a box of all different kinds of rocks, with labels of what they are and where they came from. She thought that was pretty cool. Then when they couldn't find the fossil place, he went home and brought a big rock that had over 100 fossils in it he figured. He also brought a egg carton of lots of other little fossils he had already dug up for Emily to keep. She was SO excited.
These ones are from what is called the "Lincoln Creek Formation" and then the big rock he brought was from the Astoria Formation. I don't know much about it all, but I am guessing that since Emily is pretty interested in it, I maybe learning more about it too.
These were said to be like 13-17 million years old. The joke then was that they are a little older than Emily's grandpa (my dad).
Here Emily is digging away at the rock getting things out of it.
You can see the seashells sticking out of the rock all over.
Here is one that she found.