Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Wake me up when September ends.....

I couldn't think of a good title name and that song has just been in my head since it's the end of September. It was actually a really good September so I didn't necessarily want it to end, but you get the point, right?

Okay, moving on... So for Rachel's birthday this past summer she got one of those butterfly habitats. It was actually really cool to see these little caterpillars turn in to butterflies. (Strider really liked it too...we had to let them go into the wild for their own safety). So this was the big day of kicking them out of the house and sending them off to college....

 It was very fun that they got to hold them before they flew away.

 Only one of them didn't make it. We "found him" the morning that we were going to let them go. Total bummer!
 I just love bubble bath pictures....especially very bubbly bubble baths.

 And here's some more soccer pictures. How I love being a soccer mom! The games are getting so good and so intense! They both were SO close to scoring a goal at their last games. You could tell Josh was thinking about a giant ice cream cone the whole time he was playing so hard. They get the giant ice cream cones if they score.  Maybe next time....

 And for a couple weeks they got on this kick of where they were all superheros and the game would continue for days and days picking up right where they left off the day before.

 For family night a couple weeks ago we went up to Silver Lake for a picnic dinner and walk around the lake. As always, it was gorgeous up there!

 Everyone had to have a turn balancing on the log......

 By this point William still wasn't walking. I know, 17 months....sheesh. But he walked around pretty much the whole lake just holding onto one hand. And sure enough...the next morning he was walking all over the place by himself! Yep, we have an official toddler on our hands! More rightfully known as the "tornado."

 As we were strolling around the lake all the sudden we could hear a ton of people coming. What in the world?!? Apparently a young single adult STAKE had the same idea we had. There were young single adults everywhere!!!! Luckily we got some pictures before the trail was crowded. Not just a ward, a stake. There were like 150ish of them. Holy cow.It was nuts. But it was totally funny to listen to their conversations. Was I ever like that when I was dating? I sure hope not.

 And then this past weekend we got Rach a new bike! She had totally outgrown her old one and we were going to get her a new one for Christmas. Since they ride bikes to school every day we decided we'd get it for her now so she can ride it a little longer before the weather turns bad. She fell in love with this one at Target then we found the exact same bike on KSL for half the price. Ba-da-bing Ba-da-boom. She has been all smiles ever since.
 The Maughan bike brigade...
 And don't forget the leader of the pack.....
 Kate inherited Rachel's old bike and daddy put the training wheels on. She's been zipping all over town now too!

 Oh, William has discovered some new "toys." He raids my bathroom drawer and carries them all over the house. Please don't be grossed out if you come to my house and there are tampons all over the place. That's just what we do here. Educate them early!

 My sister was in town a couple weeks ago so we got to have all the Schick's that were around over for dinner one night. It was so good to see her and 2 of her kiddos. What a bunch of crazy kids....
 For some reason Kate is always a blur in the pictures. that girl cannot hold still!!!
 I never got a good shot of all the adults, so here's the best one I could find.
 Another bit of news. Last week they had a "Freedom Run" at the school. Each grade had 30 minutes to run as many laps around the track as they could. Josh ran 7! Rachel ran 9! That is equivalant to 3 miles for Rachel (and over 2 for Josh)! Holy schmoley! Not only that...Rach got the most laps of all the 4th grade girls so she won a $5 gift card to Sports Authority. Woot woot! She already spent it on some new shinguards which were greatly needed. I was so proud of both of them. Future in track?  We shall see.....

And here's one last picture for the road.... my sweet baby boy. Why are they so precious when they sleep? Is it because they are so naughty when they are awake? I certainly think so.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

School, Soccer and other Stuff

Well we ended summer with a bang. It was a great summer and I was kind of sad to see it go. But we squeaked in a few things before it ended. We went to the Ogden temple open house. It was gorgeous and we all had a great time. Grandma Shirlene came with us.

The coolest part for me was before we went in I told the kids that I wanted them to not just look at how beautiful everything was, but how they felt. So when we went in the Celestial room I whispered to them, "Okay how do you feel right now?" Both Rach and Josh's eyes lit up and they said "I feel SO good!" Remember that feeling kids. You won't feel like this anywhere else on earth. It was cute.
 Then we made one last ditch effort for a vacation and snuck up to my parent's cabin for a couple days. Rach spent most of the time feeding the squirrel.

The boys watched for animals...

Aunt Aimee tried to teach Rachel how to crochet.

 And Aimee made her that super cute hat. I had to get a picture of the boot. She technically didn't have to wear it anymore but she wore it an extra week and a half "just for good measure."
 Kate fed the squirrel a few times too.
 He's just cute. I had to throw this one in....
 William wasn't thrilled with the menu but we somehow survived.


We also got to go to the Nexus summer party. They had the best face painters there that I've ever seen. It took this girl like 1 minute to do each of these faces. Tell me these are cool! 

 Then it was back to school! I know, that totally flew by. Rach is now in 4th grade.

 Josh is in second.
 And so far so good. They both really like their teachers and the kids in their classes. They've been riding their bikes to school which has made life easier for all of us and it's been great! I hope it keeps up as the year goes on. I'm so proud of them, they are awesome students.
 We also borrowed a projector to watch a movie outside for the summer's ending gala. The kids thought it was really cool.
 This is how we keep him away from the projector equipment.....
 But of course the night began with a shadow show.
 Kate got all glammed up for church and I totally had to take a picture.
 Ah, they're all cute. Why not throw them in too?

 After one week of school down we were so ready for a break. So for labor day we decided to drive up to the Uintah's where we could hike and fish and have a great old day. We eventually made it up there with a few snags in the morning but we were ready to go.
 The plan was....hike to the 3rd lake, eat lunch, fish, then go back to the 2nd lake, fish, 1st lake, fish, back to car. Drive to Mirror Lake and have tinfoil dinners then head home. Simple plan, right? Well, it didn't really pan out like that.....
 Poor Will was completely horizontal when Trav had to tie his shoes.
 The hike started out great. Here we are as we're passing the first lake. It was SO pretty!
 Rach wore her boot for one last time. (I confiscated it after this trip) I am glad she had it because there was a lot of rock hopping.
 Josh wanted to fish in every little puddle we saw.

 We made it to the 3rd lake and had lunch!

 The fishing poles came out and the fishing began!

 Dad was the only one with luck and caught a couple fish.
 We decided it was time to start heading back to the 2nd lake. Someone didn't last very long...
 Josh and Trav stopped to fish but we decided that I would keep heading back with Kate and Rach since we would take a little bit longer.
 After one last picture with the fish (and look at William! Dead asleep!) The girls and I started heading back. This is when the trip took a turn for the worse. Dun dun dun......
 When we came to the trail to head back there was a fork. One way was big and well used, the other, not so much. So we took the big trail. This is a heavily used trail so I didn't think anything of it. Well, we were wrong. After a little while I thought that it didn't look very familiar but we were on a trail and it had to be the right one so I just ignored that feeling.

We kept going and all of the sudden the trail stopped. What in the world? So I said, "I think this is the wrong trail we should go back." We turn around and the trail we had just come on? Gone. I'm completely serious when I say the trail wasn't there anymore. I had no idea what to do. So we hiked a little on what I thought was the trail and we were just getting deeper and deeper into the woods. Rach started panicking, imagining (and saying out loud) all of the scenarios of having to sleep in the woods and being eaten by a bear. Finally she said, "Mom we need to pray!" I full-heartedly agreed. I offered a prayed and told the girls that if they felt we should go a certain way that they need to tell me because they can receive answers too. Rach pointed in a direction so we headed that way.

I was trying to be the leader and remain calm but on the inside I was freaking out. I was so scared. What if we didn't find our way back? Could I keep these girls alive until morning? It was only getting later in the day. After a few minutes of bushwhaking it we saw the 2nd lake again. Thank heavens! We headed straight for the lake knowing we could find the trail once we got there. We made it by the lake, started following some people that we saw because we weren't sure which direction the trail head was on. After not too long, we realized they were leading us the wrong way so we turned around and headed back  around the lake. As we were going along the trail we ran into a family that said.."I think your husband just passed by here a couple minutes ago. He went that way." And they pointed us down the trail.

Feeling so much better and thanking Heavenly Father for answering our prayer we started on the trail. But after about 15 minutes or so again I had the feeling, "This isn't the right way." Then again, the trail stopped.  We turned around, and our trail was gone. How could this happen twice!!! We were all getting tired (especially Kate), we had plenty of water but Trav had all the food. We had Rach's fishing pole but Trav had the hooks and the bait. I honestly didn't know what to do. I wanted to go home.

We stopped, were screaming on the inside (at least I was) and then I heard someone say "Marco!" then the response "Polo!"  I said, "We need to follow those voices!" As fast as we could muster we followed the "Marco!" "Polo!" which they kept saying every few seconds. After not too long a family came into view. 2 of their teenage kids had gotten on the wrong trail and they were playing Marco Polo to find their way back. The dad spotted us and asked if we had gotten on the wrong trail too. I said, "Yes! Will you please walk really slow so we can catch up to you and follow you out?"  He said of course! Not only did they wait for us but the dad bushwhacked it over to us (we had to climb over a huge fallen tree to get to them), picked Kate up, took Rachel's fishing pole and led us to the trail. We were so thankful that they waited and then they hiked back with us the entire way. The dad carried Kate most of the way because she was so tired. He talked with her and was so sweet with her. Their son carried Rachel's fishing pole the entire way back. It was a mom, dad and 5 kids from about 7 to teenage years and they were the nicest family I have ever met in my life. They stopped when we needed to rest, they talked with us to help calm us down. I know we couldn't have made it back without them.

The rest of the hike back was awesome. The whole time I just thanked Heavenly Father for sending this family our way. If their kids hadn't have gotten lost right when they did we wouldn't have found them, and I'm sure we wouldn't have found the trail. What a faith building experience this was. One I don't want to do again, but faith building nonetheless.

When we made it to the parking lot I first saw Josh. He yelled, "Dad they're here!" How I loved seeing him! We went over to the van where Trav was putting together a "survival pack" to come back up and look for us. He had sent someone to go get a ranger and had already left a note on the van that he was coming to look for us. They were so worried and had been praying for our safe return too.

I'm just so happy that it turned out the way it did. You hear of people getting lost in the mountains all the time....especially places like the Uintah's. I am not one to go off the trail so this was so scary. I hope we can all remember how Heavenly Father completely answered our prayers. He hears us, he's aware of us, he loves us and he wants us to come home.

This is the only picture I took when we were on the trail home. We were almost back again and you can see some of that sweet family in the distance. I don't even know their names. I wish I would've gotten a picture of this family that saved us. I will never forget them.
 We were all so happy to be back together so we continued on with our original plan. We went to Mirror Lake picnic area, had dinner and played around for a while.

 William really liked the smoke. You'd think he'd never seen a fire before or something. We have them ALL THE TIME in the backyard.

 Then we pulled out the giant marshmallows. The perfect ending to a crazy day.

 When it was time to go (and we left like 2 hours after we originally planned we should leave) the kids were begging to come back again. I can't express how grateful I am that we can look back and say it was  a great day. It easily could have turned out very different.
 Okay, now on to other things. Sorry that was long but I really want to remember that experience.

Here is Kate's "first day of pre-school" picture. She was actually terrified to go and was clinging to me and crying when I went to drop her off. I stressed all day but when I went to pick her up she was grinning from ear to ear and said "I love school!" That is a relief and she's been great ever since.

 Here's William chillin' at Josh's soccer game....
 And here's the big man himself. Daddy and the girls were at daddy daughter camp-out so it was just William and I to cheer for Josh. He did great!

 Then the girls came home and we had Rach's game. Yep, they have the same uniforms this year. Rachel's team is "Tidal Wave" and Josh's is "Fire Dragons." I love soccer season!
 They even both won their games and Rachel survived without the boot!
 Josh likes to give Will rides on this little car. Too cute.
 And this is what I've been doing for the past several days.....35 jars of peaches, 8 jars of jam, 3 pies, 12 bags of frozen, 1 peach cobbler and eating peaches with every meal. I think we're set!

 Here's one last one of Rachel's boot. I realized I didn't have too many pictures of her with the boot. She broke her ankle on the tramp and had to wear it for 4 weeks (but it ended up being 5 1/2) She was a rockstar at school though! Glad we're done with that!
Phew! I'm tired just reading about this!