Thursday, August 26, 2010

For Aaron

Once upon a time we decided to see if maybe we could possibly stand to be with each other every single day for the rest of forever (minus random scout trips, sewing holidays and trips to Tridell).

I was nervous.

You were a little more sure.

I decided I'd give it five years, and then if I didn't like it I was out.

Well, times up.

And I'm staying.
Not because there are too many kids,
but, because I like it.
In fact, I love it.

Thanks for making my the last five years such a great adventure.
I can't wait to see where we go next.

Happy Anniversary! yesterday
I love you.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Montana, Canada and Idaho

After leaving the Family Reunion in Island Park our destination was Glacier National Park. If you have ever driven across Montana you will know it is a huge state! We felt like we were driving forever - but a good forever, unlike driving across Nebraska or Wyoming. The drive was beautiful.

It took us all day to get to our campsite on the Swan Valley Highway about an hour from Kalispell. The areas to camp were mostly dispersed and we found a great site near the river. It was cool because there was a little nature trail just down the road where we found wild strawberries, rasberries and thimbleberries. It reminded me of the Pacific Northwest because there was moss hanging from the trees and in the morning there was fog in the valley. It was beautiful.

Monday morning we went into Glacier, confirmed that all the campgrounds were full, took this picture of Lake MacDonald and started up the Going to the Sun Road.

Part way up the road we stopped and took the Trail of the Cedars. It was cool to see the huge trees and turquoise water coming off the glaciers. Goose loved walking on the "widge."

The Going to the Sun Road was awesome! The views were amazing.

There were so many people in the park we could not find a place to park at Logan Pass, so we decided to go down to the East side of the park and find a place to camp, then go and have dinner in Canada. Unfortunately, the only restaurant open in Cardston was the Dairy Queen. A little disappointing, but we ate dinner anyway (the ice cream was good), took pictures at the temple and came back to our campsite. Good thing the weather was fair that first day since the remainder of our time in Glacier would be rainy. There were also fires in British Columbia which made visibility go down quite a bit.

In the morning we went back up to Logan Pass and hiked to the Hidden Lake overlook. Goose was so excited to walk on the snow, but by the time we were almost back to the car she was pretty cold.

That afternoon we went to Many Glacier Lodge; clouds were still hanging around but still very pretty.

We hiked about a mile to a lake up one of the glacial valleys and threw lots of rocks. Thank goodness we came back when we did, that is when we saw the bear. Momma bear and two cubs, just wandering on the hillside while we all gathered on the side of the road to gape. We had been talking about seeing a bear all week so we were glad we did the night before we started home.

There were so many wild flowers out, we took some pictures but from this one you can just tell there was a lot of variety.

The token Wild Goose Island picture. You can see it was still cloudy.

This was our campsite on the east side of the park, next to a lake and all the foreign campers.

This is Roaring Eagle Falls. We stopped and hiked there as we began the homeward journey. Yes, that waterfall is coming out of a cave. The river is up above the cliff and drops down through some holes to where you see it. In the spring not all the water can go down the holes and it comes over the top too.

After 12 hours on and off the road through Montana and a little of Idaho, we made it to Blackfoot. You can probably tell from this picture that Goose had super fun with her new friends. Thanks for letting us stay with you Sue and Terrick!

We did start home one day early - Goose had been asking if we were going camping with Grandpa from the minute we left home. Since most of the trip was for Mom and Dad, we went to Grandpa's house for Goose. She loves her Nana and Grandpa Averett and Grandma and Grandpa "Murky".

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Badger Creek, Grand Teton and Yellowstone

Before too much time passes I had better post on the remainder of our trip built around the family reunion. We started off driving to Springville, spending the night and then going to Rexburg where we had dinner with Scott and Brandee (thanks guys) saw Brandee's garden, took some pictures of the temple and then...
we were off to Badger Creek. Our friends were very nice to let us stay in the Yurt there which had the most awsome view of the Tetons just out the front door.
Eliza made quick friends with Sage, Brigham, Anne, and Paul who also love popsicle and playing outside.

This was Goose's prefered mode of transportation while at Badger Creek but she also did good hiking with the kids.
One of the days while we were at Badger we went to Jackson and Grand Teton National Park. We told Goose we would see some Buffalo and we did, right next to this little backroad with noone else around so we didn't have to worry about making a Jam in the road like we would see much of later in our trip.

The next day we said goodbye to our friends and this beautiful view to head to Yellowstone.

Like I said in the previous post, goose loved the geysers and mud pots.

When I get another little bit of time I will post the last leg of our trip, Glacier National Park, Canada and Nanna's House.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Merkley Family Reunion 2010

Last weekend was the annual Merkley Family Reunion. This year it was in Island Park, Idaho. We stayed in two very nice cabins and had a lot of fun in the surrounding area including Yellowstone.

Here is our family near Old Faithful. Goose got pretty good at saying "geyser" and asked to see more after we left.
We went to Big Springs and fed the fish a little but more the seagulls.
We rented canoes at Macks Inn and saw a moose up the river a ways. The kids had fun just floating around. The temperature was just right which is exactly what we were hoping for since our summer in St. George has been a little warm this year.
In Yellowstone we stopped at a couple of other geyser basins too and saw very pretty springs, geysers and rivers. We also saw some elk, bison, swans and eagles. Don't ask about the elk jam we had to wait through everytime we went into and out of the park, I thought stopping in the middle of the road to get out your camcorder and narrate the life of an elk was something you just shouldn't do, but I guess there are at least 2000 other people in the world who think that is okay.

This one was at Grand Prismatic Spring. The clouds were soo pretty all through our trip, except when they were raining on us. Which happend a little more often then we would have liked, but not during the Merkley Reunion. As soon as I get more time I will post about the rest of our trip to and from the reunion.