1-Stroller flying off cliff in Zions National!
This was quite a day...and sadly...an accurate reflection of how my brain has been working lately!
We headed off for a spontaneous summer vacation to St. George and decided to take a Hike in beautiful Zion's National Park on the way. It was HOT HOT HOT...but Jaxson was excited about our adventure and had a blast chasing squirrels and playing in the dirt.
I was up for a little exercise...so I strapped on my tennis shoes and headed up. I was having fun until I was halfway up the mountain in my tight denim shorts (dragging my 15 pound overweight butt uphill mind you)...noticing pretty quickly that I was hiking alongside a woman with a child strapped to her front and one in a pack on her back with a special water-releasing backpack that made her seem so professional and super human:) I was so pissed off. I was sweating to death...and eating red vines! ha ha ha.
Jaxson was kept safe by a leash. I always swore I wouldn't be one of those mothers who kept their children on leashes!!! So embarrassing. When thousand foot cliffs are involved....you risk looking "cool" for the fact that the monkey tail attached to your wrist is the ONLY THING keeping your child from plunging down the ravine. Actually, it has the adverse effect (the leash that is) people loved it!!! A mountain full of people were staring and laughing and oohing and aaaghing over his scrumptiousness:)
(the majority of them korean tourists...but still)
On our way down the mountain Jaxson was busy pointing out a mother duck and her 5 babies trying to cross the river WAY WAY WAY down below. (Over the side of a cliff and 200+ yards down a rocky mountainside mind you)! He has the best eyesight on earth I swear...because my family couldn't believe he spotted them. He kept trying to tell us "LOOK at those ducks..RIGHT THERE MOM!" and we couldn't see them that far away. I was pushing my trusty BOB jogging stroller (I am obsessed with that thing:) which was carrying every belonging I own. My camera and several lenses, diaper bag, wallet, snacks, etc.
Meanwhile Jaxson was riding on my dad's shoulders and he screams (imagine echoes off cliff walls at this point)...
"HEY MOM...let's kill em' and eat em'!"
(Yes you heard me right...he was referring to the precious little family of ducks on the river)
I'm not sure if it was the shock and horror of hearing my big-eyed and grinning little boy come up with something like that graphic (and quite intelligent. ha ha) but I momentarily lost all ability to think...let go of my stroller and turned to look at him. My family (mainly Jarom) started screaming my name and I turned around just in time to see most of my favorite things tumbling down the side of a red rock cliff.
All I could think for hours afterward was "how lucky I was that my child wasn't in that stroller". I seriously don't remember like 5 minutes (I'm blaming over-exertion...ha ha:) and consider myself VERY lucky. My wonderful husband lowered himself slowly down the mountainside and recovered every last granola bar, lipgloss and cell phone that was strewn down the cliff. The only casualty is a small gash in the handle of my beloved stroller. Everything was fine. Amazing huh?
I plan to go back. Only next time I'm buying a cool pack for Jaxson to ride in...taking vitamin water and a water backpack thingy so I can look all pro like those rock-hard women I saw. They were pretty darn serious about it. I was just looking for a nice little family outing. I think I'll stick to the local parks with slides and swings and benches. Yes benches to SIT and RELAX.
2- Grandpa's Garden!
My Grandpa has the world biggest garden.
He lives in Southern Utah and owns a farm...with enough land to grow food to feed his entire extended family (plus a city I swear) for an entire year! Jaxson had his first experience helping pick the veggies. I am excited about canning this year (I am getting so old and boring, ha...and yet I love it). For the first time (by this FALL) I'll have a Food Storage room to actually store it:) Next week I'm heading down to spend some quality days with by grandma and a butt load of green beans.
It's always fun to learn new things! Compared to my friend GAYLYN...I have a long way to go:) She is Mrs. Domestic...not to mention a wonderful mother. I am LEARNING all I can from her and enjoy her so much. She is so "REFRESHING" to be around and cares only for the things that matter. Like Canning (ha ha...I joke...and of course, lets not forget her perfectly applied makeup).
I'm kidding again. She gets me.
On our walk this morning she had me laughing so hard I about died.
2-Saving a drowning lizard in the pool!
After Zions...We were off to spend a week relaxing in beautiful St. George. It was heaven...and a much needed vacation. Aren't all vacations much needed??? I live for them. Great food...relaxing by the pool in 108 degree heat...reading a book...Plays at Tuachan...and the shopping. Oh...I want to go back so badly. Everytime we go somewhere I realize that I could spend weeks on end with Jarom and never get tired of him:):) He makes me laugh and laugh...and he is always so concerned with what I want to do. It's amazing after 5 years of marriage that he STILL makes every decision based on what he thinks I WOULD prefer...even if it's torture for him
(the outlets...he would rather die I swear).
We spent DAYS by the pool.
Jaxson learned to swim and I couldnt' believe how quickly he became FEARLESS of the water. He would put on his floaties and start kicking! He could swim laps around the pool on his own by the time we left. We all got fried crispy (which we love) and spent a lot of quality family time together. I was swimming with him when we came upon a lizard. I reached out (thinking it was his plastic one we take almost everywhere) and went to hand it to him when I realized the thing was squirming and most definitely alive. I scream and Jaxson gut-laughed for 10 minutes. We then saved it's poor little life by getting it to dry land and watching it struggle to breath for a minute. It ran off and Jaxson could NOT stop talking about it. He was very impressed with his mommy touching a REAL LIVE LIZARD.
I was pretty proud myself. I hate animals more than anything on earth.
It's a tradition to attend Tuachan Theatre each year. We saw Footloose this year and it was simply wonderful!!! The Dancing was amazing...and I kept leaning over to Jarom saying "I used to be able to do that"...."I could do that too!"....."Oh my gosh...my body used to look like that" as I finished off a bag of bite sized nutter butter cookies I had stuffed in my purse. Ha.
Oh how things change:)
He just laughed....and told me he likes me better "THIS WAY" whatever that is supposed to mean.
That's what he has to say.
Jaxson is such a good child. I swear I did something right to deserve him:) He swam and played the entire day and was just exhausted...yet sat on my lap for the entire 3 hour play and watched quietly. Last year...at 18 months old...he watch Les Miserables at Tuachan which was 3.5 hours and he didn't make a peep. He makes my job so easy! We pretty much take him every where and I love that he doesn't limit what we can do as a family.
3-Wonderful book reviews!
Reading is one of my new hobbies. Who would have thought!?! I am usually too fast-paced and busy to take the time to read...but I have learned to thoroughly enjoy it. I loved reading by the pool in St. George...and read 2 books while I was there. I have since read 2 more...and am starting the book list from the book club in our neighborhood this week.
Look at me be a nerd.
It's so much fun. I take a bubble bath EVERY SINGLE night and read for an hour. It's me time....and I am never stopping. I love it. It is also such a refreshing hobby for me aside from my pictures, scrapbooking, shopping and list of things that do absolutely nothing to make me a more educated and well rounded person. I am really loving it.
I have started reading a lot of Jodi Picoult books. I just finished Vanishing Acts (so so good) and My Sisters Keeper (wonderful). My sister's keeper is actually a movie right now in theaters...but the book is so so good so you must read it. I also read "for one more day" which is about a mother whose son plays baseball and hits really close to home for me. It is so good, sad, touching and eye-opening. "Running with Angels" is pretty darn motivating as well:)
I am just starting "Change of Heart" which I heard is AMAZING.
Serious. Go get a Jodi Picoult...but I warned you that there is always some interesting language and 1-2 naughty scenes per book. Whoops:)
I already told you about our relaxing week away....but I didn't mention that we were able to attend the "Mormon Miracle Pageant" at the Manti Temple while were in southern Utah. I grew up attending this pageant with my family each summer...and it was fun for me to take Jaxson. I remember it so clearly when I was young and I am really glad I took him. He loved it and talked about it for a few days. When Joseph Smith was shot during the play Jaxson turned to me and my parents and said, "OH DANG IT....they SHOT HIM!"
What a crack up he is.
(checking out the fountain at the TEMPLE)