Thursday, September 18, 2014

Catch up again

 I've digressed on my blog and got side tracked with the feast and Labor Day festivities, so I'm going to back track a little bit.When I last left off, Taz had just turned 16!.  He got a back to school haircut and a cute card in the mail from his Aunt Cathy that his cousin Caitlyn had made.  It was a licensee with his picture as a little boy on it.  He loved it and keeps it to this day in his room on display.  The Monday after he turned 16, we had an appointment to get his licenses with the DMV.  He failed his first time.  So, we promptly returned the next morning at 6am and were the first in line for standby.  He was called to test at 8 am and this time he passed! He was so excited to drive himself to band camp that afternoon!  Of course, it's always stressful and worrisome for a mom when their child takes off.  But I'm slowly getting used to it.

We played a lot of Pinochle and games in general knowing Talon would start new work house soon and Tanner was leaving soon.

His section in band won the spirit stick and apparently it had a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle theme to it.  So Taz's section was supposed to add to the spirit stick.  We came up with an old Bratz doll of Cynjyn's and pasted a Megan Fox face to it and added it to the trophy.
Cynjyn and Becca spent a lot of time together towards the end of summer.  They always seem to want to bake something when they are together.  This time it was brownies.  They wanted to do the recipe on the box that called for marshmallow creme, but we didn't have any so they microwaved a bag of marshmallows and loved how they puffed up. It was hard to spread them on the brownies and they became a little hard but the final product turned out really good.  They put a chocolate frosting on the top. 
Cynjyn got to go to school the Friday before it started to get her schedule and locker.  She has a bottom locker this year and she didn't get two classes she signed up for so she was a little disappointed in that.  But I think this will be a good year for her regardless.
They went to mutual that night and it was self defense night and they got to practice some moves on each other.  
School started the last week of August.  Taz is 16 and a Junior this year.  Cynjyn is 13 and an 8th grader this year.  Taz and I were super happy when he left on his own and drove himself to school the first day.  We both loved the freedom 16 brings. 

 They are so cute!
This is how we found Cynjyn one day after school!
The Sunday of the feast Mikel and Talon were taking pictures because they were twining.  I quickly ran into my room and grabbed mine and then we were tripleting!The school projects started in right away.  Cynjyn had to make a poster and Taz had to decorate his hand.

Her project turned out cute, but as we were taking her to school the morning it was due, we noticed something in her name that was a little off.  Can you see it?
Talon finished up boot camp at the end of August.  He had a graduation ceremony at the Santa Fe on August 29th.  Me, Mikel, Tanner and Garry were able to attend.  We had a lunch and they showed a video during that of their time at boot camp.  It was of them being pepper sprayed and tasered. 
They took an oath and walked among the wardens and sargents who'd prepared them and got their official pin.
It was very lovely and he started his new job the following Tuesday.
We got some new lawn furniture on clearance and Garry managed to set it up before the whole mutual came for an opening social BBQ.
The elder in our ward was companionless for a month.  So he was having youth in our ward go on mini missions with him.  Tanner went shortly after our labor day camp trip.  He left on a Tuesday and stayed until Thursday night.

Taz, Cynjyn and I tried out the new snow cone shack by us.  Taz got Tiger's blood and I got sugar free tigers blood and Cynjyn got root beer, so her tongue didn't change color. 
She twined with Adinda at school one day when they both wore their Supernatural T-Shirts. 
Talon's taser marks from the day he got tasered at work.

Mikel and the kids all went to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles one day together.  Mikel knew I  would want a picture and texted this to me! 

And finally, Cynjyn and her gang decided to have a crazy sock day shortly after school started. 
 Looks like they had a fun time and good participation.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Labor Day weekend

Our semi annual weekend camping trip with friends is becoming a tradition.We are so grateful to Andrea for picking a place and booking it for us all so that we can enjoy Labor Day and Memorial Day with friends.  This year, we went to Duck Creek in Utah.  It is about 30 min. past Cedar City and we had a great time.  We went up there with no wood since we had no room to haul it.  We had planned on buying it up there.  When we got there, we found that we could easily forage for wood in the trees surrounding us.  We arrived Friday night and set up camp in the dark.  We managed to find a little wood and start a fire.  In the morning, we could see easier and Garry gathered quite a bit.  I felt like we were on Naked and Afraid because we were obsessed with having enough wood so our fire wouldn't go out!  The Shafers and Thatcher's arrived Friday night as well.  Saturday, we waited for the rest of the group to arrive.  The Hills were first and we helped them set up in record time.  Later that day Marilee Taylor and her two girls showed up and the Witts with Jessica.  For breakfast that day we had kielbasa and potatoes cooked on the new two burner stove Garry bought since we've always borrowed the Witts, but couldn't since they came this time.  For lunch, we did an Italian pressed sandwich.  We got a loaf of Italian bread and put roasted red peppers and pesto and mayo on it then layed it with dry salami, provolone, Canadian bacon, Munster, and pepperoni.  We did a few layers of each thing, then we wrapped in it the plastic bag and foil and put a frying pan on top of it to hold a big rock so that it would "press" all morning.  We ate it with chips and cantaloupe. 

That afternoon, we decided to go explore some caves in the area.  We went first to the ice caves.  They were a big disappointment.  They are nothing compared to the ice caves in Shoshone.  You climbed down a rope and the cave was muddy and cool.  You couldn't go far into it.  It was more like an alcove in a rock.  Toni and I stayed up top, but could see everything going on down below.  We decided that we needed to go to Mammoth caves and get a little more into spelunking.  That turned out to be a good idea.  The cave had three tunnels you could explore each exiting at  a different spot.  All three though you had to crawl to get out of.  The kids and some adults did all three.  I went in the walking one until it got so low you had to crawl, then I turned back around.  On our drive there, we saw about 10 deer and an antelope. It was just me, Garry and Tanner in the car because all the kids had rode in the back of the Hill's truck there.  Cynjyn wasn't feeling well after her exploring, so she rode back with us.  We stopped at Duck Creek Village for some ice cream on the way back to camp.  That night we had foil dinners.  Tanner and I had hamburger patty with onion, potatoes and corn.  Every one else just had the hamburger and potatoe.

Everyone came to our campfire and we made it the adult fire and sent the kids to the Hill's for the kid fire since our sites were right by each other.  We roasted Starbursts and made smores and visited.  It was fun.
It was very cold at night and Cynjyn froze the first night, but she hadn't zipped her sleeping bag all the way, after doing that, she was fine.  I slept with a beanie on the last two nights, but I still was cold that last night.  Garry was too. 
Sunday, we had hash browns, bacon and eggs with ham and cheese for breakfast.  After breakfast, we all decided to go to Cascade falls.  It involved about a 20-30 min hike.  We were all game for that since there was no hike to any of the caves the day before.  It was hot, but we all went.  Unfortunatly, the falls were pretty piddly since it was the end of summer.  But I've heard that they are fabulous in the spring.  I headed back before everyone else to get a start on the uphill back hike, but I did just fine thanks to my early morning walks!  After the falls, we went to Navajo Lake.  It was murky and dirty around the shore, but that didn't stop Psych or Nella from going in.  Some of the kids waded a little too.  When we got back to camp, we had Carne Asada for lunch, then headed up to the Witt's camp because they had a lot of shade.  We all played Goblet of Fire and three rounds of Couch of Power.  Taz was on the stick team which they all had to hold sticks.  He got a huge branch for his stick and carried that around for awhile.  It was pretty funny.  We had dutch oven chicken and Potatoes for dinner and afterwards everyone came to our campfire again.  We shared cobblers and chocolate filled cones.  The teens wanted to take a walk in the dark, but were a little afraid, so Dave went with them. What they didn't know was that Bill and Debbie were hiding in the woods waiting for them.  We heard a lot of screaming when the teens discovered them.  Unfortunatly for Bill, it was dark and his head collided with a tree and the tree won.  But the kids had a great time.  The campfire conversations included scary movies and Total Blackout. 

Monday we were up early and packed up and headed home by 8:00am.  It had been a super fun weekend and we can't wait until Memorial Day!