Thursday, July 14, 2011

Kellis's Scout camp 2011-12

The Scouts.  Hummmm...I wonder where Kellis is??  Oh yeah...Cheetos!

First scout meal...hotdogs...yep it's Scouts!

BRRRRRRR.......swim check in the lake at 8900ft and the snow on the ground at the camp finished meltingon June 29th?  Well you can only imagine how COLD that water is.  Nice work Kellis.  You did it!

Now this is camping.  Have fun son!
You wake up one morning with the idea that we are going to have a baby.  Then that idea begins to grow and swell and soon you are figuring out that this baby is coming!  WOW!  Then he or she arrives, and if you were like me at all, I looked at this new little boy placed in my arms and thought, "Now what do I do?"  It took me a while to "get to know him" and really start to love and adore him.  And then...he is suddenly 3, then 5 then 8 then 12...It is an interesting thing to watch children grow up right before you eyes.

Kellis has always been one who has looked at life as an adventure but something to be cautious and to enjoy as well.  He is just growing up in a way that Scott and I are sooooo proud of that we nearly burst with pride.  He is kind and loving to his sisters, he is playful and rambunctious with his brothers and cousins, yet he can be serious and understanding when he needs to as well.  Ahhh, these are all the thoughts of a mother and I have the right and opportunity to have them.  Anyway, just wanted to share my are the pictures from the scout camp.  They are wonderful!  It is all boy...go Kellis. 

Best complement from one of his leaders: "Kellis is so great--he is so low maintenance.  He is so prepared for being on his own.  Ya know?  I mean at night when the other boys are 'struggling' with homesickness or 'I want my mommy', he is just like, 'I'm good with it...night guys.'"  AHHHHH now that is just too cool.  Love you Kellis! 

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Marianne is Signing more and more

Today was a wonderful ASL morning.  She did so many signs with out prompting and she had complete understanding of what she was doing.  My heart and Jenna's too, was just BURSTING  leaking on the face and everything.  She looked at Anna and signed mom and looked at baby Eli and signed baby over and over...that was before I changed the batteries on the camera (grrrrr).  Anyway, enjoy the video.  Loves!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Yellowstone 2011

Garrett's viewpoint of Old Faithful!

Here is the whole family: Scott, Isaac, Garrett, Margaret, Virginia, Mom, Kellis and Marianne.  Yellowstone Falls is behind us...wonderful!

Terrace Spring.  Our first 15 minutes in the park.  There was a dead Buffalo (American Bison) carcase off the boardwalk.  Cool!

Some of us at the new Visitor Center at Canyon.  Sooooo worth the education here.  They showed all the rocks, formations, maps, how many times Yellowstone has exploded and changed the face of the US and so forth.  Powerful!  Humbling...and it is ready to blow again.  We just don't talk about that in front of Garrett.  He is a little nervous about the SUPER VOLCANO!

Marianne LOVED the buffalo.  She just laughed and smiled at these.  She signed "dog" or bird for nearly every animal.

Ahhhhhhhh, the falls!  Is there anything else to say?

This is the 375 steps of Yellowstone--more like the 1000 steps of Yellowstone.  It is tucked away near the south side of the falls and you descend down these steps and have a view of the falls that is so up close it is amazing.  You can feel the rumble of the water through the metal steps...POWERFUL.

The first picture of the falls and the mist.

THE FALLS!  Look how close you are!  It is soooooo NEAT!  never been here in all my trips to the Park.  Loved it!

Garrett said that this fallen tree looked like Tree-Beard's friend after the Orcs chopped it down.  We were just above the Dragon's cauldron and headed towards sour lake.

The buffalo and the kids...we are signing buffalo...right by Sour lake.

Just us having fun with the Buffalo.  Right after this shot Isaac heard a crashing sound and we turned to look into the trees to see a dear that had 6 points on it just scratching himself against the tree.  Super cool Isaac!

DEEP POOLS...this is by West Thumb Yellowstone...right by the Lake.  Soooooo cool. 
WOW...This was a much needed family vacation.  Honestly there are a few miracles that go alone with it: 1) finding the money to do it--because of a strong budget, 2) finding the time, and 3) finding the deals.
Finding the money: this started in Jan and it has paid off.  We had a lot to accomplish in a small time frame but miracle occurred because of tithing, discipline, and hard work.
Finding the time: we needed to figure out a time to go when a) I wouldn't be too big to go camping, and b) when Scott could take the maximum amount of time with out getting knocked about it with work.
Finding the deals: Hands down the gas prices lowered, the car was tuned up and ready to go, and the KOA in West Yellowstone didn't charge for kids in the Tent campgrounds.  WHAT??  YES...and we found a great spot: roomy, full of trees, and CLEAN!

Okay enough about that...onto the details!  We left Friday and set up camp in the dark and just collapsed for the first night.  Sat, food, and off we went into the PARK.  That night we got back in time for swimming, marshmallows, and star seeing.  Oh yeah!  The BEARS!  They were out on Sat night and Sunday night.  They had the bear cannons blasting and the big spotlights shining into the forests...wild, raw, and a bit scary! Sunday morning, up and at them for Church, back to the park, and yep then back to camp, dinner, and more fire, star seeing and so forth. 

I can do the play by play but what I mostly want to convey here is that I saw more of Yellowstone on this trip then I ever had in all the my trips into the park.  We saw hidden places, out of the way places, the water was soooo high, the animals abundant, and the beauty of the park, and the PICTURES! 

We just relaxed, talked, laughed, told stories, and enjoyed so many aspects of the park and each other that it truly was a wonderful trip.  It was what I make a memory for our family.  Those family memories last a lifetime and help in times of trials, triumph, and tragedy.  Here are some pictures...enjoy!