Owen was assigned to give the opening prayer and recite the first Article of Faith in Primary today at church. This may not seem like a big deal, but Owen is kinda known for not willingly doing things that are outside of his comfort zone. I think he's mostly just shy and doesn't like a lot of attention (unless it's on his terms). So the last time he gave a prayer in Primary I pretty much gave it for him while he stood next to me all whiney/mopey-like. Not a good experience for either of us. So we practiced his A of F every day this week and even went down to the church one night so he could practice saying it nice and loud into the microphone. I was super happy when he came into Primary and ran up to sit next to me at the front of the room and kept asking why it wasn't his turn to do his assignment yet! He did an awesome job at both and with only 3 cues, said the Article of Faith almost entirely by himself. He was so proud of himself and was asking after church when he'll get to do it again. I sure was a proud mama! Go buddy!
Not sure where the idea came from, but Russ decided that he wanted to have our family trip this year be to Oregon. I gotta say, it was probably the best family vacation we've had! Anyone who loves being outside would love this place. So green, tons of hikes for all hiking levels, waterfalls, rivers, fishing, you get the idea. It was heaven! We went with my brother Eric and his family and they were great company.
Owen and Shelby, all excited after finally arriving at our cabin for the week. These two were best buds on this trip.
This River (Sandy River) was literally right behind our cabin. We slept with our windows open each night so we could listen to it.
The first full day we took a trip to Trillium Lake to see the awesome view of Mount Hood and do some fishing!
This girl has a weird obsession with stuffing things down her shirt. Here it was rocks.
The next day we drove about an hour to do a hike to Punch Bowl Falls. It was a 2 mile hike to the falls. There are some really amazing falls if you go a full 6 miles on the same trail but I'm 100% positive our kids didn't have that in them!
Upper Punch Bowl Falls.
Touching the Lower Punch Bowl Falls.
Caught stealing Aunt Kim's rice krispy treats.
Me and my super tired hiking buddy nearing the end of our hike. I had so much fun with her in the carrier and talking the whole way up and down the trail. She did awesome.
At the end of our hike down.
We stopped and took a picture at Multnomah Falls on the way home since it was right off the freeway.
Friday was the Fourth of July! We drove 2 and a half hours to Cannon Beach for a small town parade and some beach time. And we couldn't pass up some Tillamook ice cream while we were there. :)
This parade was awesome because there were no other people sitting next to us, so all the candy that was being thrown was all for our kids! We took home a huge bag full!
We drove back and Owen literally slept the entire drive and Elsie stayed wide awake singing and laughing to herself. It was the best road trip ever! We decided to head straight to Salmon River for some fishing, which Russ had found early the morning before.
Then it was back home for some dinner and sparklers and some fireworks that we could halfway see from our back porch!
A little concerned about the fire at the end of his stick.
More fishing! The Salmon River was close to our place, so we went there a lot. It was ridiculously beautiful!
Look how green the walk down to the river is!
Buddy reeled in a fish!
I even caught one! And Russ ate it the next morning for breakfast.
Sunday we decided to do a family hike to Mirror Lake. It was a bit harder than we were expecting but the views were so worth it!
Enjoying a slow part of the hike.
Am I right or what?!
We found a shady clearing by the water and ate chicken salad sandwiches and cherries for lunch. A perfect Sunday afternoon if you ask me!
Since we had a fire pit in the back, we had to make foil dinners and roast marshmallows one night, right? I'm pretty sure Owen ate seven marshmallows.
Notice all the dirt on Elsie's mallow. She drug her stick in a circle all around the fire in the dirt before roasting it.
On our last full day we found a super easy half mile hike/walk to Zigzag Falls. Another beautiful hike! And it was fun because the kids didn't need to be carried. Even on the way down when I was trying to hold Elsie's hand so she wouldn't fall she kept pushing me away and clumsily running full speed. Happy kids!
Owen got a little adventurous (which he NEVER does) and decided to climb across this log at the bottom of the falls. We stood back and let him have his fun and then watched him lose his balance and fall into the ice cold water! It of course happened in the one second that Uncle Eric turned his head to look at something else. Good times!
We are already hoping to return here in the next couple years for some more adventures. Who wants to join us?!
I'm behind! But about three weeks ago Russ needed to be in Colorado Springs for a few days for work. And since Elsie and I can fly with him for free and he already had to get a hotel room for work, the kids and I said "why not?" and joined him! I've never spent much time in Colorado but it sure is beautiful. And the weather was pretty much perfect while we were there! Russ had to be away from us for a few hours each day which required some constant hotel room entertaining on my part to keep the kids happy, but we survived. :)
Sorry for the pretty lame pics, we just had our phones for this trip.
Before we made it to Colorado Springs, Russ needed to stop at one of his construction sites in Denver. Owen was pretty happy to get a ride in one of the big trucks!
Owen didn't like the itchy blankets that the hotel had to offer. He opted for a pile of pillow instead.
Messy picnic dinner.
Enjoying the weather and a beautiful view of "The Garden of the Gods".
Feeding giraffes at the zoo.
Owen was super grumpy on our zoo outing until he got a free ride on this train! He was all smiles after that.
At least Elsie was excited to see the animals.
We visited a ghost town that had lots of really old artifacts, such as this carriage. It was pretty cool.
Owen's fave...this shooting game. I'm pretty sure Russ was just as (if not more) excited.
Right out the back door of our hotel room. Beautiful!