Monday, October 19, 2009

An Unexpected Trip (or "Making Do")

We have been excitedly awaiting our family vacation this year. With Jason's school schedule and all the traveling he had to do during the summer, not to mention finalizing Ethan's adoption we weren't able to find time to schedule a trip until last week. We planned to spend the week at my family's cabin near Aspen Grove. Those plans fell through at the last minute. "The last minute" meaning we were already at the cabin and found the water and power had been shut off and when I called the person "in charge" (he obviously finds too much joy in being "in charge") he refused to tell us how to turn the water back on and proceeded to yell at me for close to 30 minutes. I'm a pretty tough person, especially when confrontation is involved and don't cry easily; but he made me cry. And then he kicked us out.

So, completely on the fly, we were able to plan a week-long trip to Capitol Reef. My amazing mom found us the perfect place to stay in Bicknell, UT (thanks, Mom, for single-handedly saving our vacation!) and we were able to thoroughly enjoy our one possible week of vacation.

On the way down we had an unrepairable flat tire and ended up having to replace all four tires. Can I just say that I hate buying new tires? We already HAVE tires!

Are those not the cutest lips in history?

Since out plans changed on the spur of the moment, we weren't completely prepared for the place we stayed. The hotel room had a nice kitchenette, but no dishes or utensils and only one small saucepan to cook in. We made do for the first night and breakfast the next morning, but then we drove "into town" to get some paper goods and a used skillet (Thanks DI in Richfield!)

If you ever go to Capitol Reef, I highly recommend borrowing the "Family Fun Pack" from the visitor's center. It is a backpack literally stuffed with different activities for families to learn more about the area and its history. It's geared toward kids, and Ellie especially loved the binoculars. It's completely free, by the way.

A nice older gentleman offered to take a picture of our family when we hiked the Grand Wash. Ellie was in a shy mood and decided not to participate. I'm glad that he got her off by herself in the shot. I think we might use this as our Christmas card picture, it's pretty fitting. (I'm kidding, just in case you couldn't tell).

As soon as our new friend left, Ellie decided she'd like to be in a picture after all. Fickle girl.

Nothing rocks a baby to sleep like a hiking backpack.

We found this perfect throne for Princess Ellie to sit in.

She then told us to call her "Junior Ranger Princess Ellie".

Here is Ellie doing the sign for bird. She was pretending to be a bird in an egg.

Then she hatched and started flying around. (Gotta love that tushie peeking out...)

We did have an other casualty on the trip (besides our tires). Jason injured his foot while out for a run the second day we were there. He was a very good sport and limped along with us for the rest of the trip. Poor guy; it's still bothering him and he'll be going to the doctor soon to assess the damage.

After a short walk to see the petroglyphs, we found a nice shady spot along the Fremont River and played in the water. It was cold enough that it helped Jason's foot feel better!

Afterward, Jason taught Ellie how to burn stuff with a magnifying glass. That's what Dads are for.

Do your kids ever get this dirty? Mine do very frequently.

Ellie was able to earn Junior Ranger badges from both Capitol Reef National Park and Goblin Valley State Park. We made a detour to visit Goblin Valley on the way home.

Jason's poor foot wasn't up to trekking around Goblin Valley with us, but the kids and I were able to enjoy the formations.
Ellie especially liked this "camel".

All in all it turned out to be a very fun trip. I'm so glad we were able to salvage the week!


  1. I want to know who would dare make my Heidi cry!! He needs a good firm spankin'! Or at the very least, not be able to be "in charge" anymore.

    I'm glad you had fun despite jerkface's bad attitude!

  2. You're awesome at always staying positive! You ended up in one of my favorite places, Capital Reef! I love it there!

  3. Looks like it ended up being a great trip for you. Sorry you cried. We also have someone "in charge" of our cabin and it can get stressful sometimes. I wanna go to Goblin Valley or Moab sometime. I have been to Goblin Valley once and only been to Moab like 2 or 3 times. Looks like a wonderful trip.