Monday, July 27, 2009

family reunion

This past weekend was a super fun adventure! We went to the Smith-Lunt family reunion up in Alpine, Arizona. It was the first family reunion that I've been to that I am able to remember- and with a family that I didn't really know- so I wasn't sure what to expect. It turned out to be a lot of fun with a bunch of really neat experiences.

Here we are driving- Nathan always has to make silly faces when I am trying to get a picture.

It was a little bit of a drive- it took us a little over 4 hours to get there- so naturally, I took a little nap. When I woke up we were driving through a really nice neighborhood. I asked Nathan where we were and he said he was looking at houses. I love looking at houses, and we weren't in any super hurry so I sat up and started looking too. Little did I know, Nathan was looking for one house in particular.

The Snowflake temple! Nathan knew I had been wanting to see it, I had never been before. He took a little detour and drove through Snowflake just for me! Isn't my husband awesome?!

It was so beautiful! I want to live in Snowflake now! It was a small temple, but so pretty. And unlike the Mesa temple, it had an Angel Moroni- which looked humongous! It was so cool!

The flowers outside the entrance were gorgeous- I had to take a picture.

There were a couple waterfalls out front too- I love love love waterfalls!

Buster was glad to get some fresh air at the temple. He did so well on his first real road trip. I was nervous how he was going to be around so many new people and other dogs, away from home for so long-- but he really had the time of his life.

Another picture of the temple, from the side we were parked on.
After i had taken a few pictures, we were on the road again, heading to Alpine!

"Are we there yet, mom?"

When we got there we went with Marvin to get some drinks to go with dinner. We had bbq beef sandwiches- which were delicious.

The house we were staying at was on a ton of land and had animals all over the place.

Bubba (Amy & Robert's puppy) was fearless. He walked right over the fence and started barking at the horses. It was funny.

The dogs were pretty curious. Of course, neither of them had seen horses before.

Since there were so many people at the house, and dogs weren't allowed inside, Nathan and I opted to sleep in a tent in the front yard. I hadn't slept in a tent since my 4th year at girl's camp! Here is Nathan's getting our temporary residence all set up.

At the end of the day, Buster was so tired, he went right into the tent, laid down on the bed, and was out like a light. He didn't wake up at all during the night needing to go potty. I was so happy!

Even with a sleepy dog, we didn't get the best night's sleep. Nathan and I both woke a few times. It was stormy outside, and there were some interesting animals noises. We went to bed pretty early, so of course I woke up pretty early- at about 4:00! I had to go to the bathroom, so I made Nathan get up with Buster to go potty too, it was still pretty dark outside, but the sun was starting to peak up. We laid in the tent and talked for about 45 minutes, and then fell asleep again until 7:00.

We did so many activities the next day! After we woke up for the second time, we took showers and ate breakfast. Then, we got ready to go to Big Lake.

Sydni walked the dogs while we waited for Marvin to gas up the truck and Nathan to pick up some bottles of water. It was so cute to see her try and manage both leashes. She loved playing with all the dogs.

Then we hopped in the truck and drove around forever! But we finally met up with Amy, Robert, and the kids at Big Lake. It was so nice up there.

Isn't it pretty?

Playing in the water

Even Rusty went for a dip!

Buster loves swimming, but I think the lake water was a little cold for his taste. He didn't want to be in the water for very long.

The temperature didn't seem to bother Sydni at all- she had a good time playing in the water. I would have put my feet in too, but I forgot to bring shorts or flip flops. I was more concerned with how cold it was going to be when I was packing. I didn't even think about swimwear! Oh well, I guess I know for next time.

While we were at the lake, my niece Madison picked me flower- she knows how much I love daisies.

After we got back from the lake, the family was having lunch meat sandwiches for lunch. Nathan and I were in the mood for something a little more hearty, so we went up the road to the Bear Wallow Cafe and had burgers. They were pretty delicious. The burger that Nathan ordered had ham and cheese on it- I had never heard of putting ham on a burger before. I guess it wouldn't be too bad though; people always put bacon on burgers, and it's all the same animal. Nathan really liked it- maybe we'll have to try it at home some time.
Later that afternoon, some of the little kids had left dominoes out in the front room, so we had a domino tower building contest with Marvin and Sarah. We were trying to see who could build the widest tower with the smallest base. It was harder than I thought it would be. I'm not really sure who won- we both came up with a couple different designs. Our little competition was a lot of fun and helped to fill time before dinner.
Dinner was delicious-we had chili. Buster was really excited because we let him lick our bowls- mainly because we felt bad that Bubba ate a lot of his food. haha
After dinner, some of the cousins were playing horseshoes, and Nathan and I decided to take Buster for a little walk up to the fishing pond. As we started getting closer to where the pond was, we noticed the sheep were all around it, grazing. The closer we got the more sheep looked up from their grazing and fixed their eyes on us. They were just staring, I thought it was so creepy! I nudged Nathan and was like "Wouldn't it was so crazy if they all of a sudden just charged at us or something?" We both laughed- but as walked through the gate, the sheep all started walking right towards. I was getting really creeped out!

Before we knew it, the whole herd of sheep was following us! We walked on to the fish dock and just stopped. The sheep stopped too- the just sat there at the edge and the dock and stared at us with their beady little eyes. Finally Nathan scared them away by jumping towards them! We determined that it was Buster that was attracting them- the owners of the sheep must have some working dogs that help to herd them or something. We told Buster he was such a good sheep dog that all he had to do was walk by and sheep follow! =p
We went back to the house to tell some of the family about our crazy sheep experience and wound up going back to the lake with the O'Neill's. Sydni wanted to see the sheep, and the boys all wanted to go fishing.

Nathan and Robert fishing.
Nathan caught a fish!!

The boys checking out Uncle Nathan's fish.
Doesn't he look so proud?
Nathan taught me how to cast the line, we stayed up there for a while, but I didn't get any bites.
Nathan said we could go back in the morning.

Here is another flower that Madison picked for me. I think this picture turned out so cool!

Marvin and Sarah found a "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" game, and Nathan and I hopped in to play too. We had so much fun! I even called my dad for one of my lifelines- it was pretty funny! He gave me the right answer- but said he wasn't sure, so I picked a different answer and lost. Before long, the rest of family realized what a blast we were having and almost the entire family joined in! We had start playing in teams because so many people wanted to play. After a couple hours of playing- we finally had a millionaire winner! It was Nathan! His million dollar question: Which color does not appear on the Lithuanian flag? Thanks to the game GeoChallenge on facebook, Nathan actually knew this answer right away! The Lithuanian flag is yellow, green, and red- no blue!! If only it were real money!

Amy, making a silly face at Nathan through the window.

This is what happens to little boys who ride bikes through mud puddles. I think all of Carson and Garrett's shirts wound up looking like that.
After a fun filled day with the family it was time for bed. It wasn't stormy on the second night, so we slept much better. Buster slept through the night again too. When we woke up in the morning, we got all cleaned up and ready to go. A lot of the family headed out early in the morning, because they had long drives ahead of them. We hung around a little longer though, to enjoy what the property had to offer.

We said good-bye to the horses.

One of the babies! So cute! The little girls named this one Vanilla.

Oh my goodness! I got a nice picture of Nathan! He didn't even try to make a goofy face! I love my husband- such a handsome guy!
We found out that one of the sheep had twins over night, so we got to go see the brand new baby sheep! They were cute!

We leared that sheep are born with tails, and then they cut them off! I didn't know that, I though they just didn't have tails. I wonder why they get rid of the tails?
After we saw the new sheep, we all headed over to the lake for more fishing fun and...

I actually caught one! I was excited that I caught one, but sad because it died. It was a catch and release pond, so I thought I would just be sending the fishy back along on it's merry little way. But the poor little fish swallowed the hook all the way down, and it tore it's gill. It bled a lot. =(
Here is my rainbow trout. We don't eat fish, so we gave him to Nathan's cousin Ben. Ben showed us how to gut it and clean it and all that. It was pretty gross. I am soooo not an outdoorsy girl. We found out that it was a mama fishy- it had eggs inside it. That me feel even more bad that it died.
After I killed a fish, I was ready to go home. We thought about driving home through Safford, but decided that drive was WAY to long, so we went back the way we came- minus the side trip to Snowflake.

Good bye awesome weather and beautiful landscapes of Alpine! So pretty!

We ran into a wicked sweet rain storm on the way home. I was loving it! I felt like it completed my trip- everything was so nice! It was so fun to meet all the aunts and uncles, and more cousins! I think by the end of the weekend I even remember everyone's names. I can't wait to find out what we are doing next year, and to be able to see everyone again!

Monday, July 20, 2009

laundry woes

See this? This is less than 4 days worth of laundry(mostly Nathan's) done in 5 or 6 loads. If I had my parent's washer and dryer, this would be like 2 loads. I have to do laundry like every single day- I hate laundry. Curse our teeny tiny little apartment sized washer and dryer! I can't wait til we move into our house and actually have real life size appliances. It will be such a blessing to have washing machine that holds more than like 4 pairs of Nathan's cargo shorts at a time.

Ugh! Sorry, I just needed to vent.

cow appreciation day

July 10th for Cow Appreciation Day at one of my all time favorite fast food joints- Chick-Fil-A! If you dressed up like a cow, you got a free meal. Of course, when Kassi and I heard of this fantastic day, we knew that me MUST participate. So on July 9th, the planning and preparations began!

Kassi and I- so psyched to be getting everything together for the big day. Have you ever seen two girls more excited to dress up like cows?
Our cow shirts!

The little girl shirts! We couldn't leave my sister and nieces out of the festivities!

We draped a few of the shirts over the couch to dry while we worked on some other projects...

...unfortunately, Nathan came home from work in his nice white polo and sat right on the couch- getting black paint all over his back. That's why he is pouting in this picture. Luckily, we caught it fast enough that I was able to get most of it out. I bet if I had some OxyClean it would have come right out- just like on the commercials.

We had to paint the famous Chick-Fil-A "Eat Mor Chikin" signs. Here they are drying by the fireplace- so they'd be all ready for the next day!
After hours of preparation at the apartment, it was time to get some beauty sleep, before meeting up at Jessica's house bright and early the next morning.

Cow make-up was a must. We had to go all out! Melody and Bethany were so excited to get their make up done. And doesn't the shirt look so cute? I must admit I was jealous of the little girls shirts after I finished painting them.

Bethany loved everything about Cow Appreciation Day.


Mel- pretending to be a cow. Isn't the tail adorable?! While Kassi and I were making shirts, hair ties, and signs- Jessica was making all us tails. I told you we were going all out!!

We had to stop by my mom's house to get pictures taken before we headed off to Chick-Fil-A. Here we are- all set to go!

And a shot from behind with our awesome tails. You are probably thinking that we must have felt ridiculous going out in public like this. Not a bit!! We were proud cows!

Can I get a w00t w00t for the cows?! I can't hear you!
Mel wore her fancy black shoes, because they were more like cow hooves. Yes, that's right- we even considered our footwear in this whole scheme.

Sexy cow # 1 - Jessica Stanley!! Mooooooo!!!

Sexy Cow #2 - Kassi Larson!!! Moooooo!!!!

Sexy Cow #3- Tarin Lunt!!! Mooooo!!!
Now, let's get out there and Eat Mor Chikin!!!!

The whole cow gang eating our delicious free chicken! It was so awesome, we just went up to the register and could get any meal that we wanted.

Melody's kid meal- Chicken nuggets, fries, chocolate milk (not pictured), and an awesome little cow toy!

Here's our final pic with the giant Chick Fil A cow. Mel isn't in this picture, because she was scared of him and Bethany isn't looking at the camera because she was too busy talking his ear off.

It was such a fun day and of course we were the most awesomest cows there! Lots of the other cows just taped some black construction paper to their white shirts, or colored them on with marker. Sooooo not as cool as ours. And we were the only ones tails and signs rocked the socks off any competition. We can't wait to do it again next year!