Llano River in TX where we camped after attending a 1-4pm church with a deaf unit in Austin.
M looking at the mountains in the distance.
Entrance to Carlsbad Cavern.
Working on Jr Ranger booklets. The kids visited 6 parks in 1 week and got badges in 4 of them.
Camping at the Grand Canyon. We were stressed about getting there in time. The GPS said we would get there by 6:30 but it also said we still had 60 minutes to drive and it was past 6pm. Then I remembered that Arizona didn't participate in Daylight Savings. So we got there ok! Also there seems to be a new thing called Camp Hosts. They are volunteers with RV's in the park that can help with late check ins, or so it seems.
The bridge across Glen Canyon that my dad designed. The Glen Canyon Dam is what makes lake Powell a Lake instead of more Colorado River.
We needed to stop at the Glen Canyon info center and decided to go swimming in Lake Powell.
We had a picnic with my sister and had a lot of fun.
We went to Bridal Veil falls and I let the kids walk in the lower falls. I was sort of amazed at how cold the water was, and how shifty the rocks were. It's like real nature, and yet we and many others were letting small children scamper about. I suppose the risk of rock slide was relatively low... maybe.
On our way our of Provo Canyon we went up to the Overlook and happened upon a hang-glider and 3 para-gliders prepping to take off. We hung around and got to watch a few. It was awesome.
The kids went swimming Thursday, Friday and Saturday with their cousins.
The cousins were going to 9am church and we were going to 12pm church. So I braided the hair of 2 little girls. We worked on packing up and then went to church. We got there early because it was actually 1pm church. So we drove up to campus and P took the kids to the physics building for a quick trip.
Here we are at Yellowstone. You can't even see in our eyes that we will freeze to death that night. We never saw it coming. We did attend a nice lecture about bears that night. And we were up by 7 (after freezing to death) and got to see a mom and baby bear on the road. Also we got to participate in the bison stampede. OK, it wasn't a stampede but the road was blocked by 10-20 bison at a time as we slowly, so slowly I fell asleep, tried to leave the park. After that experience, the children no longer called this an Amazing trip. They called it a scary trip.
We drove through Wyoming worried that we wouldn't get to Mount Rushmore in time. Once again I became a time zone sleuth. I figured out that While SD is on central time zone, the part that has Mount Rushmore in it is still in Mountain Time. So we arrived in good time to attend a lovely lighting ceremony. We didn't have enough time for the kids to do their Jr. Ranger booklets, but the kind ranger let mom have them with the promise to give them to the kids after they did their books.
At Nauvoo we had about 1 hour to tour the historic displays. It turned out that the blacksmith had a son who lived in Florida. And it turned out to be our Stake president. It was really cool seeing all the rope making, barrel making, blacksmithing etc... Also, now that there is a temple there, it totally changes the feeling of the historic center. It makes the sacrifice of abandoning all their homes, and the temple much more real.
We met up with friends at a mall in Indianapolis. They were at a convention and we had meant to meet up at a garden/playground. But my miscommunication with P led to us meeting up within walking distance of the conference center. I would not have planned to meet up downtown in that way, but it was better than what I planned. We even found parking onstreet and it had already been paid for 1 hour. When we got back to the car there seemed to be a ticket on our windshield, boo. But it turned out to be the car behind us. I felt sorry for them. More so, because they were walking behind us from the mall to the car. Not that we held them up, but that it's sad to actually see the family come to their car and find a ticket.
We had a nice time visiting these cousins in Columbus. All of our hosts were so kind in letting us arrive late, let their kids stay up late to play with us. It was really cool.
Our last stop was to visit friends in SC. Someone at church remarked that they have a lot of visitors. No wonder! They are super fun to visit. They should really be a bit more rude to discourage repeat visitors : ) After we left their house, it was suddenly so tiring to be on the road. We had nothing to look forward to anymore. We just wanted to be home.
We got home at 11ish and went to bed. G started school in the morning and we've been going to doctor's appointments and catching up ever since.