Monday, May 18, 2015

Miss Reader

Ellie loves her books. What amazes me is how fast she memorizes them. She doesn't just know the one or two books we read a lot. When I get books from the library she has them memorized in a day. One of my favorite books she likes to "read" is called My Precious Little Bear. Ellie doesn't like to cooperate very well for the camera, so this is the best I could get, but her little voice just kills me, and she knows every word in the entire book. 


           We haven't tried camping since our semi-disastrous Yellowstone trip last fall, but we decided we would give it another go before I get any more pregnant and before we have a newborn. We headed down to Moab on Thursday afternoon. We had reserved a camping spot at the Riverside Oasis campground right next to the river. It is an RV/tent campground so spaces are packed in and it is not typically how I like to camp, but it was nice not worrying about finding a spot, and out of all those types of campgrounds we saw in and around Moab it was definitely the nicest, with grassy tent spaces and lots of trees. Flushing toilets, a washing station, and showers are also nice to have close by. 
         We borrowed the huge scout tent, so Ellie pretty much had a room to herself and we set up her pack 'n play in the tent and she slept like a champ. She woke up earlier than usual, but other than that she was great. Friday we headed out to Dead Horse Point and Canyonlands. Ellie loved running along the paved trail at Dead Horse Point and I couldn't keep up with her as I waddled along, so I had to send Brian chasing after her a lot of the time. We hiked in to a pretty little arch in Canyonlands, but the wind picked up and sand was blowing everywhere. Ellie was not a fan. We got back to the car, ate some lunch, and then drove around a bit. Ellie feel asleep and we headed back to Moab where a severe storm was blowing in. Sheets of rain poured down and the temperature dropped. Wait. This seems familiar. Isn't this about how our Yellowstone trip went? We drove for a couple of hours in the rain, down past Hole in the Rock and back to Moab. We ate some dinner and found a gelato shop in town. Ellie made us sit outside in the freezing cold to eat our gelato because she liked the chairs they had outside. Luckily we were under a roof. We headed back to camp where our tent had blown over. Luckily everything had stayed dry. The rain finally started to let up and we toasted one marshmallow over our Coleman stove. It tasted like propane, but Ellie enjoyed it anyway.
         Saturday we headed into Arches. We hiked around balanced rock (which I had never done before) and it was the perfect little trail for Ellie. We then met Alli, Dave, and all their kids at Sand Dune Arch where they all had a blast playing in the sand and climbing on rocks. It was still a little chilly and we decided to head up to Devil's Garden area and eat lunch. I wish I would have documented what happened here, but I was too busy and didn't have the camera or my phone. Because of the heavy rains the day before, there were a lot of puddles full of thick mud around the picnic area. Ellie was running and fell face first into a huge muddy puddle. When she tried to stand up she slipped in the slick mud and fell back in. She was caked in mud and crying inconsolably saying "I'm so dirty. I'm so dirty." I felt bad but I couldn't stop laughing as I helped to clean her up and tell her that it was going to be ok and we could just clean the dirt up.  She cheered right up once she had clean, dry clothes on. We headed to Double Arch on our way out--another perfect hike for Ellie. She loved hiking with her cousin Caitie and holding her hand. Afterwards we headed home. It was a short trip, but just the perfect length to have some fun but not get too worn out. Despite the half-day of rain, we had a good time and might try camping one more time before little Jr. comes!

Ellie looks like she is screaming in terror in this picture, but she was really just waving and yelling "Hi!"

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

April 2015

April was a month full of yard projects and fun outside. We visited the conference center on a chilly day with my mom, Jenny, and Brian and Timmy. Ellie loved running around with her cousins and still talks about it sometimes. We also had a fun time hunting for easter eggs. Ellie is a candy monster and I had to empty most of her eggs out so that she wouldn't make herself sick on so much candy. We hunted eggs at the Porter house, and we had an egg hunt at Grandma Joycie's house with the Evans cousins.  Ellie spent a lot of time in the dirt this month as we have been trying to build a fence aroudn our garden, but while we were working on that, Ellie insisted on helping us "dig" and do other tasks. A little dirt never hurt, and I'm glad Ellie likes to be outside looking at the bugs and getting in the dirt. Brian has been a champ, doing my bidding as I designed and planned the garden fence. It was fun to work on a project together and we were so proud of how little we argued during the process, even when we had so many trials and errors that we learned from! Let's just say they have seen us A LOT at the Home Depot return counter.

Finding eggs at the Porters.

I love this picture because Ellie and Brian are in perfect stride together.

Mmmmm, so good.