Monday, March 7, 2011

Now I have my own camera I'm gonna try starting to keep this update again.

Michelle & I went to St. George for a couple of days to go mountain biking. We biked almost 40 miles and did some really fun trails.

This first set of pictures are all from the Paradise Canyon ride.

Brian riding on the Paradise Rim.

Smooching at the top of Paradise Rim.

This is an overview of Santa Clara from the top of Paradise Rim. The green hills are in the background are the Barrell Roll & Rim trails we rode just before doing this ride.

Michelle riding on the Turtle Wall trail on the way up to Paradise Rim.

Michelle showing off some of the scenery on the Chuckwalla trail.

Michelle & Brian posing just off the Chuckwalla trail.

This next pictures are from our ride on the Zen trail:

Michelle riding a tricky section.

Brian standing near an overlook on the Zen trail. The trail down below in the background is the Bearclaw Poppy trail which we rode right before Zen.

Michelle sitting on top of the world.

Brian riding a kind of steep section on Zen.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Hiking & biking

Hiking to Dead dog falls (Battle creek falls).  While Brian & Krista went biking at Lambert Park, everyone else hiked up Battle Creek Canyon to the falls.  This amazing hike is just 4 minutes from our house.  The falls are about 3/4 mile up the trail.

Andrea, Scott & Michelle on the trail up

The boys in a little cave along the trail.

Grandma & the boys at the waterfall.

Adam, Todd & Scott playing on a rock.

A close up of Adam on the rock

The whole group at the waterfall: Scott, Grandma, Todd, Michelle, Andrea, Adam

Michelle & the boys in front of a stream along the trail.

We don't have any pictures of any of our bike rides.  Michelle hasn't had the chance to get out, but I (Brian) went out with Darby, a friend from work, for a few minutes on Friday.  Then I did a LOT of biking with the kids on Saturday.  First, I was headed out to ride Saturday morning and Krista asked to go so we headed down to Lambert Park.   We had a ton of fun and Krista did an amazing job of learning to ride on rocks.

I had figured out a new place to park that required less driving and had a nice trail to Lambert Park.  On this new route there is a really cool 1/2 acre or so dirt bike park (it's an empty lot with lots of dirt hills).  I thought the boys would love it.  So while the girls went up to Salt Lake I took Adam, Scott & Todd there.  Todd & Scott were in seventh heaven.  Adam played in the dirt a bit but got bored quickly.  There were people on dirt bikes doing 12 foot high jumps with 360s and all kinds of cool stuff. The other boys had SO much fun that Adam stayed with a babysitter and we went back again.  Scott, Todd & I rode the access trail to Lambert Park and a little around the park and then went back to the dirt bike park.

I'm learning to ride clipless and having a tough time doing it with the scrapes on my knees to prove it.  I definitely am seeing why I will like them once I get them figured out.

Happy Birthday Adam!

Hey Blogspot just added a new option to do bigger pictures!!!

Adam turned 4 today.  After Todd being birthdayzilla for his 4th birthday we were a little worried how Adam would act on his birthday.  He was really good.  It was fun to see the excitement and pure joy in his face with every present he opened.

Michelle asked Adam what he wanted for breakfast on his birthday and he said, "Rice Krispy Treats".  So here's Adam getting ready to eat his birthday breakfast. (Oh the advantages of being a 4th child.)

Here's an example of the happiness Adam exhibited opening his presents as he checks out his doggy towel.

Adam was jumping on a trampoline just before he went to Smoking Apple for dinner.  We picked him up on the way from the neighbor's house to find out that all he had was wet socks and no shoes.  Since Brian was there to pick him up and Michelle wasn't Adam ended up at the restaurant as follows...

Adam loved his new Spidey Suit and slept in it overnight.

Adam had monster cupcakes for his birthday cake.  Putting the candles in was serious business.

I (Brian) took Adam to Zurchers to pick out a pinata.  I was worried that he would have difficulty picking something - and then finally pick something only to start crying on the way home that he wanted something else.  However, on the way there he announced with conviction that he wanted a pirate ship pinata because he also had a lego pirate ship.  I was relieved that it was going to be so easy.  When we got to Zurchers they had an awesome pirate ship pinata.  But... Adam was adamant that it needed to have pirates on it - which of course it didn't.  So he decided he didn't want a pirate ship after all - fortunately he didn't freak out or anything.  So then we went ALL through the store looking for a pinata that he wanted.  We looked and looked and he kept turning everything down.  Finally on the very last row I asked him if he wanted a birthday cake pinata, he said "sure".  Even better he stayed happy with it and never changed his mind.

We couldn't find our usual plastic bat and used a broom handle instead.  Here's Adam swinging away - he was laughing, giggling, & chortling the whole time.  The cake pinata worked out great - it had 2 different compartments - Krista broke the first compartment open after everyone had had a turn at bat and then Adam got to take a 2nd turn to break the 2nd compartment open.

Here's cousin Kayla taking her turn at bat.

Adam loves balloons.  So I thought it would be fun to have balloons at his party. Fortunately he's at least as happy with balloons that don't float as with helium balloons.  So we bought a pack of 76 balloons and blew them up for his birthday party.  The next day we were about to have the kids pop them but Adam didn't want them popped and was on a mission to save them.  We decided to let them stick around another day or two. Here's Adam and Scott playing in them the next day.

The Haunted Railroad

We went up to Vivian Park to take a ride on the Heber Creeper.  It was a busy day so we barely made it in time for the 8:30 departure.  We were the very last group to board - it took us a long time to get out of the house - there were 3 adult females in our house so the amoeba factor was going strong - that's what I call what happens when there is a large group (usually family) gets together and it takes FOREVER for the group to move.  Example usage: They amoebaed to the front lawn for family pictures.

We decided to brave the cold and sit in a open car on the train.  We couldn't hear the ghost stories they were telling over the intercom very well, but I think we had more fun that way - it was a little chilly but we weren't too cold.  They did a good job and we had a lot of fun.  On they way out they had panoramas for different ghost stories.  Then on the way back all the spooks from the stories were on the train.

It was funny because the spooks all targeted Todd.  Todd had a great time - one spook got him really good when she asked if he wanted to pet her (dead) kitty.  He said yes, and when he went to pet it she had her hand in it and it attacked him with it.  He jumped about a mile high and laughed his head off.   Scott & I were watching and thought it was hilarious.

The sky was perfectly clear and the stars were stunning.

The whole family enjoying the train ride.

Scott standing.

Grandma & Andrea

A couple of spooks passing each other.  The dead gunslinger on the right was really good - she had a great gunslingers swagger and hung out on our car for quite a while.

Hee Haws Preschool Fieldtrip

Adam & I (Brian) went to Hee Haws for his preschool field trip.  Adam was grinning and laughing the whole time.

Adam was pretty proud of himself for climbing up this tractor by himself - the best picture of the day.

Holy Cow!

Adam loved jumping on the hay trampoline

Sliding down the slide - Adam decided it was too scary to do more than once - it took him a long time to muster the courage to slide down this time.

Feeding the sheep

Adam asked me set him up on this hay bail and take his picture.

We tromped through a huge pumpkin patch where Adam got to pick out a pumpkin.  He had to pick a small pumpkin so his choices were limited, but he was THRILLED with his green pumpkin.

Not part of the field trip, but here's a picture of Adam playing Rock Band at the Darby & Minola's house.  I had no idea he was so excited to be taking his turn.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Fall Colors

With the storm that came in Tuesday/Wednesday Michelle & I realized that our opportunity for riding bikes in fall colors was limited - it was now or never.  So we juggled schedules (especially Michelle juggled her schedule) to make time for a couple of bike rides.

On Thursday we rode Big Springs Hollow.  On the first time up Michelle absolutely kicked my butt.  Apparently those spinning classes are really helping Michelle.  I was panting the whole way up and she beat me by a couple of minutes.  But I did finally make it the whole way without touching. The second lap I raised my seat and stayed with her better.  It was a definite reminder that I need to get in better shape.  But at the beginning of the summer I was staying in first gear and couldn't make it without several rests - so it was gratifying to see the improvement. On the 2nd lap we were running tight on time to get Krista & Scott to cross country - I think we made that 2nd lap in 40 minutes.

Big Springs was very pretty although a lot of the trees had already lost most of their leaves.

This is me just getting to the top on the first lap - I was about to die.  Michelle was just hanging out at the top waiting for me.  This was about the most out of breath I've ever been mountain biking.

A picture of a meadow on the way down.

Michelle riding through the leaves on the way down.  It was really fun to ride through the fallen leaves.

A picture of us sitting on the trail just enjoying being together.  Michelle especially loves this picture - I think she put it as her background on her computer.

 This was one of the rare trees that still had all of its leaves so we stopped for a picture.

 Brian riding through the leaves.

Then on Friday we rode the Bonneville Shoreline Trail that starts at Bridal Veil Falls.  The leaves on this were absolutely perfect.   This is an interesting trail because the first 1 1/2 miles is a really tough uphill that is rocky and steep - the last 1/4 mile is really steep - the rest isn't too bad.  Then it flattens out for 3 plus miles.  The trees were absolutely beautiful on the flat part.

Here's Michelle and I right where it flattens out.  You can see the amazing fall colors in the background.  Thanks to the guy from the other group of bikers for taking this picture for us.

This picture gives a small sense of how pretty the leaves were on the trail.  There was lots and lots of color.

Michelle riding with the mountain ablaze with color in the background.

This picture was taken in the same spot as the one of Michelle above but looking down the mountain - you can a touch of the Provo Canyon highway in the upper left.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Autumn Hike

We went hiking as a family for family home evening on Monday.  We hiked from Summit Parking lot toward Aspen Grove.  It was beautiful with lots of gold from the Aspen leaves changing colors.  Adam fell asleep in the car so he was a little grumpy when we first started, but he had a great time once he woke up.  He was heavy in the kid backpack - I'm thinking that may be his last hike riding in a backpack - by next year he will probably be too big.

We were racing daylight so we didn't get to hike all the way to Aspen Grove.  We went down 50 minutes and then actually were faster hiking back up - about 40 minutes. Scott's friend Mita came with us.  There is a ton of lush vegetation on this trail - it was very pretty. 

Here's Brian & Adam at the beginning of the hike.  Adam is still waking up and isn't too happy.  I almost turned around and went took Adam back to the van because he was screaming/crying right in my ear, but he really wanted to be on the hike so he calmed down quickly - this was taken just after he calmed down.

Scott, Mita & Todd ran ahead and hid a little off the trail to hide from us.  We started getting on their case for leaving the trail and then decided they were in a perfect spot for a photo.  Shame on us...

Todd enjoying the hike down

Once we got to the bottom of where we had time to hike we finally started seeing colors from the oak tree.  Here's Scott in one of his crazy poses with some colors in the background.

And here's Todd just a little further down the trail showing off the fall colors.

Again about the same spot showing off the scenery.

And here's Adam on the way back up, having the time of his life.  He was laughing and playing a lot on the way up.  He was especially happy to get to hold some twigs and leaves and harass me with them.

Fields of gold...

Brian & Michelle with Adam still waking up

Scott, Todd & Michelle

Michelle looking down at the valley.

Looking up through the Aspens

Todd, Scott & Mita in the vegetation.

Todd among the Aspens

Brian & Adam hiking along.