Sunday, August 5, 2012

summer swim team

My boys love it when I sign them up for swim team - honest they do - they just forget that every morning as it's time to go.  This summer has been hit and miss with practice though - since we seem to think that summer is for vacations :)  Even with the not so consistant workouts - both boys have improved tons this year.  In fact - Miles dropped 15 seconds in his 50 free - he went from 53 point something seconds sometime in late June to 38 point something seconds in the middle of July.  Here is his "famous" race.  Hopefully you can tell which one is him - he is in the middle of the pool, but I tried to center in on him.

Ethan is still my backstroker - but the video I took of that was not good - so here is a video of his 50 free as well - he also dropped time - 5 seconds.  I need to get their official times and update the blog with them.  Ethan is the one in lane 1 (closest to the camera)

Both of the boys were the youngest in their age groups this summer - so it will be fun to see how they do next summer (unless Miles earns his lifesaving merit badge before then - I told both boys that they had to do swim team until they got that merit badge, just didn't think they would be old enough for scouting for a long time - it is crazy how quick they are growing up)!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Horny Toad Heaven

My parent's neighbors are AWESOME!!!  They invited us all up to their cabin on Cedar Mountain a couple weeks ago.  It was kind of last minute so the only ones who could go besides my parents were Britt and her kids, Caleb, Courtnie and us.  We drove over on Thursday afternoon just in time for dinner - spaghetti (my favorite).  After dinner (between a few rain showers) Brother Miles taught the kids how to shoot a bow and arrow.  Miles had done it before and picked it back up pretty quick.
Abby even got to try!
And Ethan!
Grandpa even tried to help Paige (their arrow made it about 2 feet).
Then Britt decided to give it a try . . .
and got a bull's eye her first shot - she ended up getting in the circle every time and finished with 45 points (4 arrows).  So my competitive streak decided to give it a try myself - I did get a bulls eye - but only 40 points and was beat by my little sister - we both beat Courtnie though :)
We put the kids down for bed (some took longer than usual), and the adults played games all night.  OK - it wasn't all night, but for someone used to being in bed before 11 - it felt REALLY late.  The next morning we had a yummy breakfast and the kids took off exploring.  Piper has the cheesiest grin right now and is fun to take pictures of so she might monopolize the rest of the pictures this post.  Here she is with her cousin Shawni.
Another Piper/Shawni picture!
All the cousins that came (Devin and Victor - we need you next time, boys were seriously outnumbered).
Now - back to the title of the post - the cabin property was home to a crazy amount of horny toads (or as Abby called them "torny hoads").  When I was a kid - we loved to go up the mountain with Opa and Dad when they went after wood to catch horny toads.  Well - my kids have the same fascination with horny toads (oh and did you know that horny toads are not frogs, nor toads - they are lizards) and spent hours looking for them.  Piper was fearless - honestly the picture looks like she is grossed out by the toad, but it is really her trying to smile.
Paige however was not quite so sure of the little creature.
Piper again - I just love this smile.  She actually named her "pet" - Strawberry Cupcake (yes, we just rented a Strawberry Shortcake movie from the library, but she likes cupcakes better that shortcake evidently).
Brother Miles had also prepared a treasure hunt for the kids and the big kids loved learning how to use a compass.
Here are a bunch of the "treasure hunters".  Some are looking harder than others - or maybe Ethan is just being silly.
Ethan's looking paid off though - here he is digging the treasure chest out.
Most of the kids crowded around the treasure chest to get their prizes.
Not Abby - I had to make her go and get a "treasure" - she was a bit distracted searching for a friend for her horny toad.
Here are some of the group with their horny toads before we made them let them go. 
And yes, there were tears as we left the horny toads behind - lots and lots of tears.  Abby still talks about the fun trip and asks when we can go look for more horny toads (luckily the lizards in the backyard are a bit of a consolation - however they are lots faster then the horny toads).  Thanks so much Miles family for the fun memories!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

the fourth

My one big goal this summer was to blog about all of our fun adventures - I haven't done so well.  I am going to play catch-up on some of our adventures though.  We went up to Cedar for the 4th of July again - they don't have a parade down here - so it was a no brainer for the kids - we go where the candy (and cousins) are!  Abby and Katie are best friends during this parade (I will post more about the 24th parade later - they were not friends that day).
This is one of my all time favorite pictures of the twins.  Piper and her "cheesy" grin and Paige with candy in her mouth.  (I am pretty sure that Paige had candy in her mouth the entire parade)

 Ethan was a big help with the girls - he "helped" them get their candy.  That means he gave all the candy he collected to the little ones.
 This picture was taken during the parade - the girls had so much fun eating their candy that they missed quite a few floats throwing more.
Here are some cousin shots - all the Duncan grandkids were there except for Victor - but he joined us in Escalante for the 24th parade.  I was almost to comment on how well they all match, but then noticed Miles's hat - it seems he must always wear something green and yellow.  And yes - if you look close enough you can see that Paige's mouth is still full of candy.  Oh and you might also notice that Miles is soaked - another tradition - get as many kids as you can to spray you with their water guns from the floats.
It was a fun day - we celebrated Britt's birthday with family lunch and family dinner with water games in between.  I thought the fireworks were great too - however the rest of my family is looking forward to the day when my kids will sit quietly through the display.