Sunday, September 11, 2011

Hiking, Dancing and Apple Days

On Labor Day we went for a hike around Tony Grove Lake. We'd never been, or even heard of it, before but I've talked to several people since and they've all reacted the same way. "Ohhh!", they sigh, "It's beautiful up there!". It really was gorgeous and the day was perfect for a hike. Balanced right between cool and hot, a little bit overcast but not windy or rainy. It was lovely.

This was a splendid hike for our little troopers and had most of their required amenities: dragonflies by the dozens, beautiful wildflowers (maybe a touch past their prime, but beautiful nonetheless), water to throw rocks in, bridges (or "fridges" if you happen to be Ethan) and also a scary gorilla suit set up to scare passersby.
Yes, you read that right. After the hike we grabbed our picnic lunch and headed to a table. As we came around the corner Jason spotted the gorilla suit. It didn't startle him but he said, "Oh!" and pointed it out to me. I jumped and gasped before I realized it was an old Halloween costume someone had nailed to a fallen log. We had a peaceful lunch and the kids eventually got brave enough to stand next to our new friend for a photo.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: when we're hiking we're happy! There are so many fantastic trails in the area, we look forward to trying more of them soon.

Yesterday we went to the River Heights Apple Days festivities. All the activities were free, the lines were short and we had a blast. Ethan and Ellie rode the train twice. First they went together and as soon as they got off Ethan said, "I ride the train again. No wiff Ellie. By myfelf." We did a few other things, including pony rides:

And then we went back for another go at the train, and Ethan did it by himself (love his chubby little thumbs-up!):

We were thrilled with the rides (though BOTH kids froze up at the top of the huge slide and ended up coming back down the way they went up), prizes and small crowds. And all for FREE! We love Cache Valley!

Our hike this afternoon took us to the Logan River Trail. We went a short way along the trail earlier in the week with some new homeschool friends. But today the kids and I took Jason back. Along the trail are markers representing a to-scale model of the solar system. We made it all the way from Neptune (no Pluto) to the Sun, in just about a two mile roundtrip.

It's a nice shady paved path along the river, with plenty of excellent spots for rock-throwing. That makes for very happy kiddos. By the end of the trip Ethan was on Jason's shoulders and he nearly fell alseep there.

Ellie started a dance class this week. She has been counting down the days, and I am thrilled with how well she did. She's taken one dance class before, but we ended up dropping out after just a few classes. She'd cry and refuse to participate, even after talking all week long about how excited she was and how she LOVED her dance class. She had one minor meltdown in class on Wednesday, but other than that she did fantastic! She participated and did everything the teacher asked of her. I am so encouraged to see her making progress like that!

All ready for our morning walk. The nights/early mornings have been getting chilly quickly here and I am oh so happy to see that. Our third-floor apartment is HOT!

We're loving our new location, but have definitely been missing our West Jordan neighbors and friends. We think of you often!

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