Sunday, July 29, 2012

Oh how I love to go camping!

If anyone has kept up with my blog since I started knows that every summer we go camping for a week.  We call it Clayson camp.  Originally it was my great grandma Clayson and her kids and all their kids and grandkids.  If that makes sense?  Well we did this camp about three weeks ago and had such a fun time!  It was from Sunday to Friday.  Michael went up with us Sunday to set up camp and then had to be back for work for Monday and Tuesday.  But then he came up again Tuesday night and was able to stay with us until Friday, thank goodness.  The kids did really well.  The first night Mikey kind of had a hard time.  Probably due to the fact that earlier that day (on our way to church) Michael accidentally shut Mikey's finger in the door.  Here's that story in a nutshell: 

We were literally minutes away from leaving for church and this little accident happened.  We didn't think it was too bad until we saw blood all over Michael's white shirt.  Poor little guy :(.  He was pretty much inconsolable and we really didn't know what to do.  His little finger looked horrible.  I called my mom for advice and then we called the doctor.  They said if it looked like he needed stitches that we should come in, if not then just to clean it and put a band-aid on.  So that's what we did.  Noelle was really upset about it all so I took her to church to take her mind off of it.  Afterward we headed up to the mountains.  Monday Mikey's finger looked really gross, almost infected.  It had gotten really red and swollen.  So my mom and I took a little trip to a nearby city and went to the doctor.  It's a good thing we did too.  The doctor said it wasn't infected yet but that it looked pretty bad and that considering we were camping and Mikey was always getting into something dirty it would be best to get him on some antibiotics.  The doctor wanted to get some antibiotic cream for him, but I said "no" because he kept putting his finger in his mouth and taking his bandaid off.  I know, so gross right?  So it was some bubble gum flavor medicine instead.  It worked really well.  After camp his nail fell right off and I think a new one is growing back.  But I hope to never do that again.

Anyway... Here are our pictures and reasons why we love to go camping!

1st day at camp-setting up the tent.  Noelle with her friend, second cousin, sweet Alivia.  These two play so cute together.

playing down by the stream
resting with Pa

Our tent.  It's been nicknamed "the lodge," "cabin," and my new favorite "the fortress."  It's large, but we love it and it's comfortable. 

Our tent was right by this pretty stream.  It was very soothing at night and I think really helped Mikey sleep.  We also went to Payson lake and had a blast there.

The lovely bathroom.  We have come to this campground for as long as I can remember.  One year this bathroom was out of order and we had the lovely opportunity to hike up to the other bathroom.  Basically just a wooden room built around a hole in the ground.  Gross.

This was our shower.  My parent's hooked it up to their trailer.  It was wonderful.

There was a huge pile of sand at our campsite this year and Noelle spent hours there.  She loved playing with others, but she wouldn't mind going here by herself.  She really showed her independent side here.  She did NOT need mom at all, or she thought she didn't.

Silly girl.  Playing down by the river.

Trying to convince her to get in the very cold water.

This was Mikey's bed.  He slept soooo well at camp.  I was very surprised.  Our tent would get really hot during his naptime so we had this battery charged fan.  It was a lifesaver.  Noelle also slept excellent at camp and even took a few naps.  Such a difference compared to years passed. 

We found this little guy near our tent.  Noelle was fascinated.

Mikey wanted to go everywhere!  Actually that is an understatement.  Here he wasn't quite walking but just wanted to be down on the ground.  He was usually pretty good at staying on this blanket, but still loved to get off of it once in a while.  The kids were so dirty up there.  But I didn't care much.  I made sure their hands were clean before and after eating and I used some wipes here and there.  It was nice not to be so worried about how dirty they got.  Made for a much more enjoyable camping experience. 

Around the campfire.  Noelle loved roasting marshmallows and loved the mornings around the fire.  Every morning we had hot chocolate, mmmm my favorite.

Michael participated in a horse shoe tournament with my sister, dad, cousins, and aunts and uncles.  I know he had lots of fun and he did pretty good too :). 

The last night we were there everyone got out some glow sticks.  They had lots of fun with that.  We also sang around the campfire.  That's one of my favorite parts.  We really get into it and can get a little crazy :)!!
Every year we have a pinata.  It's something my Grandma just loves to do.  Every cousin got a turn.  Youngest to oldest.  The pinata was really tough to break this year.
Mikey even got a turn.  He had no clue what was going on.  He has the funniest faces and was looking at Michael like "what the heck are you doing to me daddy?"

 We had such a fun time at camp this year.  It is sure a lot of work.  And sometimes I questioned why we even do it.  But it was worth it.  Noelle had a blast.  And is still asking if we can go back to camp.  My kids love being outdoors.  They are the happiest when they are outside doing things and I love that.  I'm glad that this is a tradition in our family and hope to continue it for many more years.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Summer Fun

Yes, I know it's been a while.  I feel like we've been busy the last little while and any time I've had to relax I've taken it.  Which usually entails just relaxing and doing nothing.  Also I've been going through some personal things that I'd rather not discuss here, nothing serious, just personal.  Anyway.  I'm going to try and make this post detailed but not too detailed that it will take you a day to read. So here I go...

(WARNING: overwhelming number of pictures ahead)

I sent Noelle to time out.  Mikey followed.  I'm an awesome mom.
We did the March of Dimes, March for Babies walk in May.  It was super cold that day, that's why Noelle is all bundled up here.  We love this tradition and hope to continue it every year.

"Damin" and Aly joined us on our walk this year.
And Michael was a good sport and went down the slide with Noelle.  Rapunzel was there but unfortunately we didn't get a picture with her.

We took a trip to Wheeler Farm.  We love this place because it's free and it's fun.  Especially when it's not super hot.  The animals are much more fun when it's a little cooler.  Noelle has the cheesiest grins :).
And Mikey (like always) is just smiling and content with life :).

Noelle really liked feeding this horse.  Even though we really weren't allowed to do it.
Because it's been so hot out our walks have been way shorter.  Like around the corner, to Maverick and back to the field/park area.  Where we often draw with chalk and blow bubbles.  Noelle calls it "chalking."  My clever girl.
And of course, you can't forget about Mikey.  He tries, but mostly he just puts the chalk in his mouth for now.
Then we took a trip to the zoo.  And this year we decided to get a year pass.  It's been fun using it.  Mikey was rather interested in this rhino.  Although I don't have a picture of it, Noelle is obsessed with the bird show.  Probably from her love of the movie "Rio."  And I kinda like it too.
We got unusually close to this giraffe.  It was pretty awesome.
And this is a weird gorilla statue.
Can't forget about the carousel.  Noelle loves that too.
All summer long my Dad does bbqs.  This is one where we had corn on the cob and Mikey could not put it down.  This kid is an eater, except when he isn't feeling well.
We've had to come up with different things to do inside when it gets too hot outside.  And seeing as we don't have a second car we have to do it all inside our little apartment.  Noelle loves painting with water colors.  She likes making rainbows and trees.

And of course we play dress-up.  Above we have "Chef Noelle" and below we have a "fairy godmother" says Noelle :).

And of course Noelle had to dress up her little brother.  Above is "Prince Mikey."
When we do go outside and take a walk we usually are pooped when we get back.  Which means Noelle usually falls asleep on the couch.  She doesn't take naps anymore so this is a rare treat for me :).

And it looks like in this one Mikey isn't ready for Noelle to take a nap.

When we do need to take the car we have to wake the kids up at about 5:30am to get Michael to work by 6:00am.  This often makes for a long day for us.  Whether I have one errand or many we usually will take the car all day, only because I never get the car and I want to take full advantage.  The picture above and below are of Noelle and Mikey enjoying one of our favorite indoor spots.  A dinosaur playground at the mall.  We used to go here all the time with our friends.  Since they moved we haven't gone as much but we managed to go once and the kids loved it all over again.

My friend Alyssa invited us to go swimming with them one day.  We totally jumped on the opportunity.  First because we really really miss them and second because we love swimming.  Noelle and her friend Kardynn totally matched.  If you can't tell we like to shop together :).
When we went swimming Mikey bumped his head and cut it at the splash pad.  Poor guy.  It was so sad and kind of made for a fussy Mikey the rest of the day.

We got to do downtown and meet some of Michael's family that was in town.  We had so much fun with them and Noelle loves riding TRAX.
I had to get these pictures.  It's like Mikey is saying "mmmm I love spaghetti."

And Noelle is saying "I'm not in the mood today for spaghetti. So how many bites do I need to eat before I get down."  And she totally likes spaghetti when we've given it to her before.  She is a picky/moody/???? eater.

My most recent endeavor is trying t0 cut the boy's hair.  I figured in the long run I will save some money and learn a useful skill.  Kind of inspired by my friend Alyssa.  I don't have the after pictures but both of my Michael's hair was WAY too long.  Especially big Michael.  Mikey's was fairly easy.  Michael's was more complicated.  I hate blending.  Lucky for me he's not too picky and didn't freak out when I made the blending line too short.  whoops.

On the morning of the 4th of July we attended a devotional our stake did about the 4th and about patriotism.  It was really neat to be there and feel the spirit.  Afterward we ate a free breakfast.  Later we hung out at my parent's house.  We went a few hours before the bbq started so the kids could play in the swimming pool.  They really liked it.  Noelle loves water but has always been a little nervous.  Less nervous this year though.  But Mikey seems to have no fear.  He would just dive in the water and even went under a little with no complaining.  It's so funny how different they can be at times.  We forgot a swim diaper for Mikey so as you know his diaper swelled to the size of a blimp.
My happy, handsome little man :)
Unfortunately I didn't get many pictures of fireworks.  Noelle was excited, apprehensive, anxious, happy, scared about the fireworks.  My dad got some really good ones and it seems those were the ones she was more anxious about.  She loved the "poppers" and sparklers however.  Mikey was really tired and was half asleep during the production.  This is what he looked like throughout the fireworks. 
Noelle is always trying to hold her little brother.  Even though he really is just about her size.  Mikey takes it well and usually tackles her right over.  I just love these two and am having so much fun with them.  They truly do light up my life and I'm so grateful to be their mommy.