Friday, July 25, 2008

Farewell to Watson

Late last night, Watson, our sweet little dog, was hit and killed by a car. I guess we feel it was a good time for him to go. He was slowing down and he died quickly. Our little three-legged wonder dog was loved by so many people and even though we didn't always give him the attention he deserved, he was faithful and patient with us.
We buried him early this morning in Green Canyon. During our little service, Eric said that Watson taught him that you are never too old to change -- we never thought Watson would be good around kids, but he ended up being great with our kids and with the other kids who would sometimes pull or pick him up too much.
Elia said that she liked taking Watson on walks.
I still feel I should have given him more attention and though it is too late now, I have been awakened to a new drive to not live my life with regrets. I don't want to neglect things now and regret later that I didn't do them.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

The top of the world... almost

Today Eric and I got up at 4:30 and left for an all-day, 11 mile hike across the top of the Wellsville Mountains. At its highest point, it is 9, 372 feet. We started at 5,400 feet. The Wellsvilles are the steepest mountain range in the world because, even though they aren't super tall, their base is relatively small. video
We started hiking just before 6:00 and got to the ridge about 8:00. From there we spent about 4 hours traversing the top ridgeline before heading down for a grueling decent. We arrived at the other end of the trail at 2:45 p.m. The view wasn't spectacular (as you'll see in the video), but it was pretty impressive to see both sides of the mountain range from the top. The mountain really just drops off on both sides.
We had to bushwack through extremely thick plants that were overgrown over a lot of the trail, dodge stinging nettle, and go across narrow switchbacks to get to the top, but it was worth it! We had a great time just talking and hiking. We found that hiking poles are invaluable tools!
Even though my feet are so sore I can barely walk and Eric got scratched and dirty...we loved going. It isn't every day that you can spend 8 hours with your honey among God's creations.
(We finished up our date "day" by watching Batman the Dark Knight with some friends). Thanks have to go to Ken and Nancy who watched the kids all during our hike. I'm sure we won't get a day like this in a long time!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Three Families in Five Days

Well, as always, it's been a busy, but fun two weeks.... again. I keep thinking everyone is going to get tired of seeing all the fun we're having while we are unemployed, but that is life. You can't have a job and all this free time too! :) It won't last for long though, we just found out we are moving to Houston. We don't know exactly when, but it will probably be soon. We'll post more as we know more.
For now, here are pictures of this week's travels. We went a week ago to spend the night at Eric's cousin Cyndee's house to help her with her four boys while she went to an all-day training meeting. Now I know what it would be like to have six kids! Kind of crazy, but totally fun!
On Friday we went to our old stomping grounds of Vernal, UT (you know dinosaur land). We stayed with our friends the Bush family (Matthew, Lauren and Dax). On Saturday we went up to Steinaker lake to go canoeing and kayaking. We also ran into some neighbors of theirs who had a really nice boat and took us out on the lake. Matthew and Eric are riding "Big Mabel" in the background:What luck! We ate too much sugar and got too much sun, but we had a super time.
On Monday we went to Salt Lake on our way back to visit Eric's sister Karen. They took us up the canyon to this beautiful lake and waterfall then back for a great BBQ and smore roasting in their back yard.
Now we are finally back home! It was great to see everyone, but it is so nice to just be home and not feel like you have to do anything... well, for the most part. What will be even nicer is having a home of our own!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Wildflowers and Fireworks

Well, it is finally July. We've been in Logan just over a month now. The weather has been great.
Eric's brother and his family came for a visit from Montana. Elia loved hanging out with her two girl cousins (ages 12 and 10). They were giving her attention like the big sisters she's always wanted but will never have. One of the nights they were here we had a big family get together at the park. It was like a family reunion! Eric's parents, sister and her family, cousin and family, other cousin and family, aunt and uncle, great uncle and grandma were all there. We acted like kids and played tag on the playground. All of the adults were hurting the next day. Are we getting old?
Eric is still doing interviews and Jen just found out that she's going to start working more for the local photographer we mentioned earlier. She'll be taking family and child portraits. She is really excited! She's also been doing a few family and child portraits on her own. She's trying to get through some wedding pictures she took to get those up too. You can see them on the photography blog: www.pettyphotography.blogspot.com
In other news, we've sure been enjoying the beautiful outdoors here. Eric went camping with Elia, his cousin Dave and Dave's two kids (Jen stayed home with Ethan and watched a chick-flick with Dave's wife Paula):Happy Independence Day! We first celebrated on Monday, June 30th. Eric's cousin Cyndee put together a party. We presented on the Declaration of Independence. Let me know if you want the quiz we gave. Other people did musical numbers. We had a great time! Way to go Cyndee! On July 3rd, we watched the Logan fireworks from the roof of Eric's parent's house. We actually put Elia to bed at 7:30 then woke her up at 10:00 for the fireworks. I took over 100 pictures, but here are just a couple:
We've also been going on hikes and bike rides. On average, we do one or the other every other morning. Here are some pictures from our hike to the Windcaves up Logan Canyon:
Elia does so well at hiking. She complains a little bit going up, but we recharge her with M&M's at our stopping points. We don't take the backpack because we think she would want to ride too much. Instead, we give her short piggy back rides to give her a break. She loves going though. She went the 3-hour round trip hike almost all by herself. We gave her maybe 4-5 2-minute piggy back rides. I got a little obsessed with taking pictures of flowers on our hike, so here are a just a couple of my favorites:
We couldn't leave "little e" out of the post. Here is a picture of how we found him one morning... Yep, he had managed to take off his PJ bottoms, diaper and everything but one arm of his top. Needless to say, we don't put him in two-piece PJ's anymore:
Here are some pictures from around beautiful Cache Valley: