Thursday, July 31, 2008

Viva Lava Hot Springs!!!!

For you poor folks out there who have never been to Lava Hot Springs, Idaho, I would just like to say that it is only the most wonderful, fun, exciting white trash town ever! My siblings and cousins can attest to the fact that even though the place looks a little iffy, it produces a fabulous time and countless memories! I have many wonderful and not so wonderful, but funny - (Mom and Lisa remember the dreaded float!:) HA HA!) stories and memories from our many trips up to Lava during the summers of my youth. So this past weekend I decided it was time to introduce Dustin and Jack to this amazing place. We met my mom and sister at my Grandma's time-share condo (which interestingly after all these years is yet to get an A/C. Seriously.) Nonetheless, we had an amazing time! I think Dustin and Jack like it just as much as me now. We had a great time swimming at the pool, jumping off the towers and diving boards, going down the slides, and cooking in the hot pools at night. Jack enjoyed swimming with Grandma and floating in his tube. Dustin was oh so brave in going off the tallest 35 foot tower. I on the other hand have decided I have become wussy in my old age and only made it off the second highest tower! :)

Dustin giving his sign of approval for Lava Hot Springs!!

Then came my favorite part: the floating of the mighty Portneuf river. This is a small narrow river with a few small waterfalls and white water rapids that you float down on an individual round tubes. This river and its beastly rocks have scarred me and many others for life, as well as claimed many a pair of glasses, sunglasses, shoes, etc. The river didn't disappoint this year either: My sister's husband lost his wedding ring and his sunglasses. He also received several cuts on his head that smacked into a rock when his tube flipped. The river also left its mark on the rest of us as we had many war wounds all over our legs, arms, elbows, and I had a beastly bruise on my tailbone. (That is what I get for letting my ghetto booty sink too low in the tube and bash against a rock!) My mom ran "Shauna's chauffer service," dropping us off at the top and picking us up at the bottom, and we got in a lot of good runs while Jack napped in the car.

My sister told me I had to tell my embarassing story so here goes: I had managed to not have any wounds, other than a bruised butt, until the last run. In the calmer part of the river I was floating along nicely, laying on my tummy in my tube. People usually watch the floaters all along the river run, and I was coming upon some campers and their dog sitting near the river's edge. I asked, "Is that a shitzu?" They answered, yes. I said, "Cute" then WHACK!! my tube hit a rock, stopped its progession and I flew off my tube into a big rock and scratched my elbow all up! Leave it to me to get injured in the calm part and make a fool out of myself in front of the campers. They totally didn't even hide that they were laughing at me and you could've heard my sister laughing at me for miles around. Then again, I did the same to her when she slipped in the mud and ended up in the fetal position at the bottom of the muddy hill! HA! HA!) Good times. :)

The battered, but undefeated floaters!!

We went to a mini-golf place and putt-putted for $1 a person. Let's just say we probably paid a $1 too much for the weakness of this course, but it was still pretty fun. After starting out putting a 5 or 6 on whole one, I decided I didn't care, 2-putted about every hole after that, and came out the champion!

The champion! I just wanted to hold up the creepy troll as part of my victory ceremony! :)

We also ate yummy food my mom made, went for walks in exciting Downtown Lava, threw our dogs in the river and watched them swim, watched the lamest parade of all time for Founders Day, ate at the Chuck Wagon/Wagon Wheel restaurant, played Yatzee and pool, visited The Sunken Gardens, and took Jack to a little park. He went down slides, and he got to swing for the first time and absolutely loved it!!

We also decided to let Chewie try going down the slide. He didn't love it so much, but we made him do it over and over because Jack just busted up laughing so hard every time I sent Chewie down the slide. So we got the biggest, cutest laughs out of Jack, but at the expense of poor Chewie!

All in all, Lava once again did not disappoint! We had a grand old time and once again created many a memory! Here are a few more pics from our adventures:

Friday, July 25, 2008

Kansas Part 2

So after we left Shawn and Melissa's house we headed to good old western Kansas to Dustin's parent's house. On the way we stopped and Patty treated us to a DELICIOUS meal at Red Lobster! (Thank you!) When we got to Dustin's sweet little home town Jack got to see his Grandpa that he hadn't seen since Christmas. He took a liking to Grandpa right away and they were pals through the whole visit. Jack was even saying, "Papa" by the end of the trip. That night we went and visited Great-Grandma and Grandpa Enslinger. They spoiled Jack as usual. He got a coat, an outfit, a sippy cup with his name on it, and a lamp. Cute stuff! The next night we got treated to Grandma's amazing fried chicken. It was so good. I only get it about once a year, at her house, and ever time it is awesome! Shawn, Melissa, and Gillian also came for part of the week too. While we were there Jack got to ride on the fork lift with Lynn two times. He absolutely loved it! He wanted to steer, touch all the shifters, and was just grinning and bouncing on his Grandpa's lap! He also tried cheetos, pie, and a pickle for the first time - all kinds of new tastes! We loved just hanging out at the house, chatting, and playing with babies! Here's some fun pictures:

On the 4th of July, Patty had a big barbeque and tons of people were there. The food was great and the fireworks show was awesome. For all you Utah folk, they have REAL fireworks out in Kansas - the kind that actually come off the ground and light up the sky. Or kinds you hold in your hand and fireworks shoot out of a tube while you hold it! (I like these, but truth be told they scare me!) It was a great show with everyone contributing fireworks! Shawn brought some huge, really neat ones! Jack was fascinated by the fireworks and got very excited to watch them. That weekend we also went to Dustin's grandma's family reunion. We got to spend time with Dustin's aunts and cousins. It was lots of fun and everyone loved Jack! We had a really great time! We got to visit with a lot of friends of the family while we were there! We definitely do not get to visit Kansas and Dustin's family enough. We made some great memories out there this summer and Jack really enjoyed his first 4th of July celebration out there! The trip to Kansas this year was great and it went WAY too fast. Here is some highlights from the 4th of July festivities:

We can't wait for the next visit! We love all of you family out there! Thanks for the fun! Now we are off for a fun filled weekend at Lava Hot Springs! Wahoo!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Kansas Trip Part 1

Our adventures continued.....We left Utah early Sunday morning (around 7:30) and drove ALL day (yes with a baby and a puppy) and arrived in Hanover, KS to visit Dustin's sister at 11:30 at night! It was a LONG day, but actually our little travelers did pretty well! We had never been to Shawn and Melissa's before, so we got to see their house and their new baby, Gillian, for the first time. We had tons of fun at their house! Their house is like a serious FUN ZONE! While there we got to hold and cuddle tiny Gillian, visit with Shawn, Melissa, and Grandma E., and then we also rode a 4-wheeler, horses, and I got to ride Melissa's scooter around town. Shawn took Jack on his first horse ride and Dustin took Jack on his first 4-wheeler ride! Their house and little town are super cute and so is their little Gillian. I especially enjoyed that the first time Dustin held Gillian she blew out poop all over him. She just had to break in her uncle! :) Jack was spoiled by his great aunt and got cute clothes and a fun toy! Jack got to test out Gillian's exersaucer and high chair while we were there, and there were also some hilarious moments were Jack decided to steal Gillian's blanket and binkie. One time they were in their car seats in the truck and Gillian was sleeping and Jack was tired so he reached over, saw her blanket, grabbed it, put it by his own face and fell asleep. Grandma really got a kick out watching that! :) Anyway, it was a really fun visit and we definitely are excited for the next time we get to visit. Thanks Shawn and Melissa for a fun time! Here are some hightlights from Kansas Part 1:

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Hansen Family Reunion!!

We packed up half our house/wardrobes, Chewie, and Jack and got on the road Wednesday night, not to return home again for 13 days! We were off to Utah for my family reunion and then were headed straight out to Kansas to see Dustin's family. After Amos' wedding on Thursday morning we headed down to our reunion destination. This year my Hansen Family Reunion was in Midway, UT and it was loads of fun! It is crazy to me that just in my family with mom, dad, sisters and brothers and all the in-laws and grandkids there is now 29 of us in all!! I can't believe it! It is so fun spending time with my large, fun, and wonderful family!
The "original" Hansen family! (I will post the whole fam when I get that picture!)

My mom and dad with all of their grandkids!

We set up camp Thursday afternoon, and then my parents made their delicious dutch oven chicken! Oh it is my favorite! That night we just visited around the campfire, and the kids roasted anything and everything -marshmallows, starbursts, gummi stuff, and all sorts of candy! Dustin, Jack, Chewie, and I shared a tent with Lisa, Bryce, and Gordo. This was Jack's first experience camping, and he did really well. He slept pretty darn good and seemed to enjoy all of the craziness of the puppies and the kids. Friday morning Dustin got to go golfing and we were also in charge of helping with breakfast. My mom did fun crafts with the kids to keep them entertained during the morning, and that afternoon we went to Jordanelle Reservoir and played on the beach and did a little boating. It was lots of fun. When it was our turn on the boat I got to ride in the tube with my mom and Dustin, while Jack laid on the floor of the boat under a seat and got rocked nicely to sleep!

All of the crazy, cute grandkids!!

That night was really fun and entertaining as Brad told his amazing stories, everyone took turns adding onto a story, the kids sang songs and danced, and everyone shared their favorite moment of the reunion so far. (I even busted out The Running Man, The Roger Rabbit, and a litle Pee Wee Herman dance moves along with some old Girls Camp songs!) That night was really fun and of course some of the memories and additions to the story really had everyone laughing! The next morning we got up and had family pictures taken. There have been 10 additions to the family since the last time we had family pictures. They all turned out really cute! The reunion seemed really short, but it was lots of fun! It was wonderful to see all of my family, especially my sister and brother-in-law and their four darling kids! I hadn't seen my bro-in-law and three of the kids for over a year! I absolutely love any chance I get to have a get together with my family! With 15 grandkids ranging from age 8 months to 10 years old, there is never a dull moment! Thanks family for the wonderful memories! Here are some highlights:

Amos and friends!

Before we left Logan for our family reunion, I got to go to one of my good friend's weddomg. Amos (sorry I just can't call her Amy) got married on June 26th. She was glowing and looked so beautiful and happy as she came out of the temple doors. I felt honored that she came and greeted me with a "Hi friend!" first after she came out. Although I wasn't able to be in the temple with her or go to her wedding celebration after, I was very thankful to get to see her on her special day!

Here is the beautiful bride, me and our other good friend Kristin.

Here is Kristin (my cute, amazing, sweet prego friend), Jack, and me at the temple

Well seeing Amos all married and seeing Kristin who is prego with her second child and getting ready to move away to Seattle area, and chatting with my friend Tana who has been my friend since 1st grade and will probably be getting married soon as well, I really have been thinking about how much these girls mean to me. A few trips to Utah back, I got to go to dinner with all three of them. We don't get together nearly enough or keep in touch as well as we should but when we do get together we talk about anything and everything, laugh, give each other loads of crap (or just give me a hard time cuz I am a bit dumb.....thanks for that guys!!) or even gossip a little about the Logan happenings/old LHS folks.......
I love these girls! They have been the best friends that I have ever had in my life. They have been there through good times and bad (especially Tana! Oh how did you put up with me through those rough years!?) I just wanted to let these girls know that they mean the world to me. We are all so so different, and at different stages of life, and living a bit spread out, but these are girls I know I can turn to for anything. Thanks for being my friends and my sisters! You guys are all amazing and beautiful and fun! I love you guys! Here is a fun/embarrassing trip down memory lane:

Freshman year of high school

Powder Puffs


Hanging out

My "homegirls" :)

Tana and Amos showing support at my sis's wedding

Tana and Jack after he was born (BTW how many people do you know who have had a friend since 1st grade...almost 20 years!)

Friend get together!

These girls totally remind me of a couple of quotes, given to me over the course of our friendship by a couple of these friends: "A friend is the person who knows all about you and still likes you." The other: "Friends love the person you were and the one you've become." This totally applies to these girls! I love you and even though we aren't so good at keeping contact (we need to do better), please know you are in my thoughts and heart!

P.S. If any of my other close friends feel left out by this post, don't worry, I love you too, and perhaps your tribute day is coming.....

Monday, July 14, 2008

Palisade Falls

Before I blog about our family reunion in Utah and our trip to Kansas, I will do a blog on something a little more recent! Last night, Dustin, Jack, Chewie, and I went for a little hike up to Palisade Falls up Highlite Canyon. Jack loves water and he seemed to enjoy watching the water, touching the water, listening to the falls, feeling the mist coming off the falls, and just being outside. Chewie did impressively well on the hike up but eventually got pretty tuckered out and rode in the storage area on the bottom of the stroller. (He usually ends up there on most of our walks we take him on! It looks pretty funny and cute!) Anyway, it was fun little Sunday outing, and it was fun to be outside in this beautiful canyon and enjoy the beautiful weather and the beautiful surroundings! Here are some pictures from our outing:

Dustin and Jack at the bottom of the trail.

Me, Chewie, and Jack at the bottom of the trail.

Dustin, Jack, and Chewie getting ready for the steep part of the trail.

Daddy having way too much fun with his fancy, snazzy water pack and enjoying his "ice, cold water." :)

Jack showing his excitement when we arrived at the bottom of the falls.

Daddy and Jack at Palisade Falls!

Our little family at the falls!

Jack getting to touch the freezing water!

Jack showing off his hiking apparel!

Jack just had to try a drink out of Daddy's fancy water pack!

Daddy let Jack have an icy when we got home! He certainly enjoyed it!