Seriously. I am nearly two months behind in my blogger journal and I am having to look back to my planner to remember what in sam heck happened in July... because right now It is a BLURRRRR. oh yeah. I remember now.
Right out of the starting gate, we began the month with an outing to the cabin in Island Park to Whoop it up over the Independence Day weekend... and did we ever! Below please find the top 10 reasons cabin outings are bittersweet for me.
1. By the time I wash and pack clothing for 6 people, I am completely exhausted and want to stay home.
2. We eat like kings nearly every meal... why? I don't know. We don't eat this way at home. Maybe there is just more time to cook yummy food and nothing to do but eat it? We have learned not to forget many grocery items when going to the Park simply because Robins Roost charges $8.00 for a bottle of worcestechire sauce. Sweet Nibblets. That store is owned by a family of Millionaires. (They totally have it figured out :) By the time we shop for and pack the food for the weekend, we are exhausted and want to stay home and have cheerios or better yet... NOthing - to save ourselves the 2 week crash diet once we get home.
3. We usually never get out of town at the time we planned. This results in grabbing dinner on the Fly - which is seriously my favorite. Everyone is quiet until at least Blackfoot because they are busy stuffing their KISSERS with a chicken nugget. I am all about playing the quiet game in the car. Unfortunately, nobody else really likes that game. Brennan loses everytime. He still just doesn't get that the way to win is to just "shut up". Oh yes, one day he will get what is coming to him. I have formally issued the mother's curse exclusively for him and his lovely future companion.
4. The ride to Island Park is a tad long. We have to "Pit" in St. Anthony in order to prevent any unwanted accidents in the back seat. This usually sets us back a $20 spot in order to get out of the store without a hissy fit from Gage. He won't just choose the quick and easy cheap treat. He heads straight for the suckers with the battery powered helicopter and blinkie blinkie lights that costs $6.99. Seriously - he has the ability to stir it up when he doesnt' get his way. Derek and I feel it is cheaper to just let him have what he wants than to have to post BAIL for one another as we are being hauled off to Jail for child abuse. It's safer than a Jail Break too.
5. The scenery is of course beautiful on the way. Derek always has to comment on what a STUD his truck is on the Ashton Hill..."Yeah. She's still doing 70" as we fly by all of the SLOW truckers and all the FOrds in the right lane. "Good thing we have a Diesel... SO IT CAN HAUL ALL OF THE CRAP THAT I HAD TO PACK!
6. The first breath of amazing, crisp, fresh, mountain air is completely invigorating. I will never tire of the smell the mountains and pine trees.
7. Derek is always the first one out of the Truck to open the cabin door. He has an inspection ritual where can't wait to see if our efforts from the last trip, made in vain - to see if we could keep the rodents (most especially the squirrels) out of the cabin - worked. There is almost always evidence that the squirrels have visited... shredded insulation, shredded pillow cases, etc. That is until Derek bought the Squirrel Deaf-i-nator 6000. Of course something this real can only be purchased on the internet. I am sure the headquarters / manufacturer is in some Hollar in Kentucky or something (joking- Dena!) So far this is the only thing that has proven effective. It is so loud, you can hear it on the steps. Once inside, you have 2.3 seconds to run in and unplug it (because finding the power switch takes too much time)or we all lose our hearing until morning. One of these times we might see squirrels jumping from tree to tree sporting the latest in rodent hearing aids... yeah. It could happen.:)
8. The first few hours of unpacking are reDONKuLUS! My kids want to immediately change into PJ's, play with the friends that have come with us, and always act like they haven't seen food in weeks. What is it about that mountain air that makes you ravenous? (and crave Pepsi & chocolate?)
9. As mentioned before, we generally take friends with us. Many of these friends have accompanied us for as long as we have been going. They are dear friends and we love to spend time together. Our children are similar in age and for the most part they get along amazingly. Good Friends *Good Times is an understatement. The memories we have made will remain - at least until we all have Alzheimers from the snowmachine exhaust. oh and it is somewhat similar to Vegas... What happens at the cabin--STAYS at the cabin. (Especially the part about me falling down the stairs while everyone was watching! Wow.)
10. The day we pack up to come home is for sure the most bitter sweet of all. Yes, we are relaxed and ready to take on the world again, but HOLY COW it takes an army of Merry Maids to get that cabin cleaned up after 20 people have been there. We have all agreed that there are times when plural marriage would be handy - and this is one of those times. We whip that place into shape in no time with all of the happy helping hands (that is an exaggeration:) Dad's are packing, moms are scrubbing, kids are dusting and vacuuming. It is team work to the MAX*I*MUS baby!
The ride home is fabulous. The kids are completely wiped out from the 72+ hours of
FUll-ON insanity, and I finally get my few hours of peace and quiet. Mission accomplished :).
This cabin trip was no different from any other. We did however visit Hebgen Lake for the first time. Good thing we brought the boat. It was the perfect outing. Across the Lake to the far shore, we found a little cove with some private docks that we "borrowed" (I do not know what happened to that sign). The water was amazing most of the day. We all enjoyed it to the MaX! Skiing, wakeboarding and tubing - even Mady couldn't resist (She hates boating) Brennan is mastering the wakeboard- for a Merit badge and went outside the wake for the first time.
The Dyes were with us the first part of the trip. Troy took Karami, Geoff and Brennan Fishing at Henry's Lake for most of a day. They brought home several Trout and of course lots of stories. We grilled it up for dinner and it was some serious YUM!
Crocketts arrived later due to overlapping schedules. Friday we all rode to John Sacks Cabin on the Motorcycles . That is a lot of MOtorcycles. 16 Bikes single file on the roads is a big deal. People would just stare at us like we were nuts or something. Well, guess what! We are nuts.
On Sunday morning, we decided to have Sacrament Mtg at the cabin. Really, when you hang out with the Stake President, you can do about whatever... (joking) We skipped church because of the crowds and we had received word from home that they had a monster Hail storm and there were lots of people with water in their basements from the rain and flooding. - so in the spirit of needing to get home, we had a song,the sacrament and listened to a brief Patriotic talk and then finished the cleaning and got on the road. (My kind of sacrament meeting)
Once home, we could see evidence of the Hail and Pounding Rain storm that hit Chubbuck. It had pelted anything alive. There were leaves and branches everywhere. The intense amount of water delivered in such a short time filled window wells and flooded the basements of many homes out here. CRAZY. The worst part of it all is that the HAIL was so large it also beat the heck out of peoples roofs and lots of the homes will also need a new roof. Our house was in great shape (most likely due to the outstanding Master Builder - who built it) and so our energies were focused on helping those who are continually suffering the effects of inferior building techniques :) I just had to get that jab in... didn't I? Any who.
Most of that next week was again fast and furious as we unpacked, relaundered and repacked for a trip to Lagoon. In all honesty - I hate Lagoon. I admit it. I am a complete premenopausal pansie. I get totally motion sick, it is smoking hot outside, and I don't appreciate the costly overcrowded environment. Sorry. My Family on the other hand completely LOVES it. So, I suck it up and endure it only because Derek drags our trailer along. This way I can take Chloee back for a nap and we can save money on meals, etc. It was ok. (I am sure i WILL get my revenge the next time I go to TaiPan Trading !! I will make them all push a cart full of raging Greenery around for an hour as I revisit every aisle making sure that I have seen everything. oh! They hate that store :) It is great!
This was just one of the many times they rode the colosus.
(Check out these reactions. Adrenaline junkies...all of them.)
The following week, Dena and Her girls were in town for a visit. This is truly a highlight for my kids. It is unfortunate that they don't live closer so that could be together more often.
Pioneer Day had a whole new twist this year as Gage participated in the Motorcycle Barrel race. He took 2nd in his age group. Hilarious. He had a blast and is the proud recipient of a shiny new trophy. He thinks he is some kind of STUD or something!
The following week was spent partially at Scout Camp for Brennan and Derek and then we frantically prepared the camper for an outing to Lake WalCott near Rupert.
We all got our fill of skiing and wake boarding and of course playing on the docks.
Saturday the 25th was Tara's bridal shower. We packed up early and busted it home so Mady and I could make it to Firth by 7:00. WOW! Crazy!
The last week of the month is usually Hopping for us. Thankfully this month we had a closing and we were jumping to get the last minute projects finished. I did 14 million square feet of faux finish in this house and my tennis elbow is reminding me. It is a drag to get old. I fear it will only get worse.
Along with a closing, we were busily preparing food for Derek's Family reunion at the Cabin to be held on the 31st - the 1st. That is a big job. Generally I am up for a challenge, but after the month I have had... it was a bit much. We always have a great time at this reunion because we don't ever get to see Derek's cousins, except for at this reunion or a funeral. I enjoy visiting with his aunt's tremendously and he has some seriously fun cousins. Unfortunately, many of them were unable to come. We counted out that if all of the families had attended, there would have been upward of 120 people present. WOW! Way to Go Guy and LaRue(That's Derek's grandparents... How about that for Posterity?)
As you may well imagine, the end of this month leaves me feeling Thrashed mentally, out of energy and in serious need of a mani/pedi. (And that is only after reviewing the calendar) No wonder I had a bit of a slow start in August. Summer is more than half over. We have no regrets as we Grab each moment by the horns and hang on with all of our might. We will continue to drink it in... For in just 3 short weeks we will be back in school dreading the boring nightly ritural of homework and bathtime.