For those who are keeping track or can speak Italian (I can't) you may have noticed I skipped week nine. It did happen (naturally) but I can't get my pictures in order because we have company staying with us and I still need to take pictures of the finished rooms. Week nine was the epic week of switching rooms and the added bonus of the fridge and washing machine breaking. I know it sounds like a great story, but you will just have to wait.
In the meantime, let's get on with week ten. Summer is about at a close and I am going to try to keep up as well as I can.
First things first: Sharon is the company we have staying with us. She is a great friend of mine that stops by when she is in town. We love to see her, but this trip is special because she is doing a training to go to China. She is gone most of the day, but we see her enough to have a blast. We taught her Farkle and have played so much I am starting to dream about it. She tried to teach us Pinochle last night. (Sadly, I was not a very willing student. Maybe another time.) We get her another week and we sure love having her around.
Monday, our craft was 'Bead Suncatchers.' I chose this craft because June has so many pony beads already. Then I realized they had to be translucent beads, so I had to go out and buy more. Figures. They came in a large container and the girls helped me organize them.
This craft was easy. The girls took turns making designs in the bottom of our cupcakes pans.
Look how fun. They all did a great job.
Then you melt them in the oven for 25 minutes at 400 degrees. If you plan on making these, please visit a real tutorial here. There are ways to melt them outside of the house to avoid the smell of melting plastic. I just put fans in place and had the kids play outside for a while since I didn't want to mess with the grill. (A friend of ours just tried this on the grill and her beads evaporated.) When the time was up, I took the beads out of the oven and put them outside to cool. I could hear the plastic popping and separating from the pan while it cooled.
Sure enough, they came out beautifully. They came out of my newer pan like a charm. My older, grungy pan had the tiniest line of plastic left over in each cup, but it came out easily when washed. No damage done to the pans, it ended up being a very easy activity. Tyler drilled holes in them later, but I haven't decided how I want to hang them yet. Look at all the fun finished products.
I thought it was weird how some of the girls put them in their glasses, but when Tyler came home in the evening, the first thing he did was balance them in his glasses just like the girls had. Must be a glasses thing.
Tuesday was an epic day. Ivory went from a mouth of 30% metal to a mouth of 45% metal. She added some braces to her face.
I think she is such a trooper. It must be kind of awful to have so much stuff crowded in your mouth, but she is taking it in stride and after two days of Ibuprofen, she says her teeth don't hurt anymore. At least she got them before school starts.
Our field trip this week was to hike the 'G'. Most of you know the 'Y' near BYU, but there is the 'G' over in Pleasant Grove. We decided to conquer that hike. If you want to hike the 'G', you head over to Kiwanis Park.
There are a couple trails you can take from there. It was actually quite crowded when we arrived but I think most of the people were hiking up to Battlecreek Falls. The trail is easier and goes to a waterfall. (I can see the appeal.) But we were there with a purpose. The trailhead for 'G' hike isn't marked. You go into the park, cross under a pavilion and head between the rocks and trees. This is what it looks like if you are going.
Then...be prepared to climb. It is steep. Very steep in some spots. It is up a mountain and I was warned before, but the kids were actually concerned about my heavy breathing at some moments. "Mom, are you going to be okay?" little voices asked. Sheesh. I'm going to be fine, okay? And I wasn't the only one who stopped to rest occasionally. Selfie rest stop.
My kids haven't done a lot of hiking, but I think they were built for it. Pearl and Ivory were always running ahead and leading the pack. The rest of the kids kept up a good pace and luckily didn't wheeze like their mother.
We brought water bottles and stayed well hydrated along the way. And the weather was perfect. Clouds kept covering the sun giving us shade and a cool breeze.
We were told it would take about an hour to get there. It didn't take us quite that long. From this picture, we didn't have to much farther to go.
I was the last to reach the 'G' and the kids were already headed to the top. Hey...wait for me. Maybe do some weeding on your way up.
We stopped for a break at the top and feasted on Granola bars. I love these gals. I'm so glad we have had this summer together.
And don't forget the fantastic view.
We actually went around the entire 'G.' We came back down the other side and it sure was steep.
Here is a great picture that looks like June is leaning. I wish she had put her other foot down because she would look so funny, but it was quite the grade.
We saw a few wildlife friends. There were some ground squirrels at the start of the hike and we found this lizard by the 'G.' A few of us found a gigantic spider on a blade of grass but I didn't take a picture. (Didn't want to get too close.)
Here is our last picture by the 'G' before we hiked back down. The kids were awesome. No complaints from any of them. Next up...Mount Timpanogos. :)
Our 'treat' this week was Mozzarella Breadsticks. I was told by several children that this didn't count as a treat.
1. An event or item that is out of the ordinary and gives great pleasure.
So there. I tried to explain that even swimming is a treat, not just food or sugar in particular, but I'm pretty sure I didn't make much progress.
Regardless, behold our one NON-sweet treat for the summer. First, cut some string cheese in half.
Next dip them in flour, an egg/milk mixture and Panko bread crumbs. (Please go find the actual recipe here.)
Now, freeze them for 20 minutes and fry them until golden. Please note this is harder than it looks. I am no expert on frying things. My oil wasn't hot enough at first and it is key that the cheese sticks don't stay in the pan for very long or they melt and stick. My first one was a disaster, but the rest turned out okay. I never got them as golden looking as I wanted, but the kids seemed to like them.
That evening, we went and played at Seven Peaks courtesy of Trapnell Orthodontics. (One of the bonuses of paying thousands of dollars for straight teeth.) The kids had so much fun. We haven't been in such a long time, and it was great to go on the slides with the kids. The best part was that everything was free. (Thank you Trapnell.) Parking was free, tubes were free. The kids had a blast.
Sadly, Robyn and I had to leave briefly to attend a sixth grade ice cream social. It was LAME!!!! The teachers introduced themselves and that was IT! Oh, and there were root beer floats. No supply lists, no CLASS lists. Nothing. I'm not even sure why we went. We said hi to a few friends and headed back to Seven Peaks to play some more. (Note to self: Skip sixth grade social in the future if we have other plans.)
Robyn was happy to be back. Check out her cute bracey smile.
Pearl probably wore out the fastest. Not because she doesn't have energy, but because she has no body fat. She gets cold quicker than the others do.
But she was still going strong into the evening. Here she is sliding and I'm pretty sure Ivory and I are somewhere in the distance waiting in a large line on the stairs only to be turned away at the very top because they closed the ride in the evening for the fireworks.
We were so close. Just one person away. We resignedly went down the stairs but there was one feisty, unhappy lady who was determined to get her ride. She would not budge. As we left the area, we saw no less than six employees headed to talk her down. (I wonder if they had to physically remove her?)
It was really a fun time. Maybe we will actually get a Pass of All Passes one of these years.
Friday we watched Mr. Peabody and Sherman. The kids seemed to enjoy it, but I didn't watch this time around since I was trying to finish up a book. (The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat. Very strange and disturbing in some ways. I sure hope I never get any mental illnesses.)
Finally, on Saturday, we drove up to Logan to go to Jami's baby shower. She is looking so cute and pregnant. It was at her parent's home. When we arrived, her dad put us to work snapping beans.
The shower was fun because I got to meet a lot of people from her side of the family. It was fun to chat with her sister-in-law, Sarah, (who is also expecting) and remember when I had my first baby on the way and I was in school. It seems like a very long time ago. First babies are so exciting. Jami is already a great mom to her step-kids so I know she will be amazing with her baby. (Babies sure change your life.)
(On a side note, I also got to visit a friend, Trudy, who had her baby this week. Her baby boy is absolutely adorable, and I'm not biased enough to say all babies are...some are a little frightening. She ended up having a c-section, but also an appendectomy after baby was delivered. I am so happy that everything went okay for her. There are so many scenarios that could have turned out badly for her or baby. It is a blessing to have a healthy mom and baby.)
While visiting Jami, the kids were able to see the family horse. Pearl was content to brush her.
She was even happier to ride. Jami's sister Staci put a saddle on the horse and Lynette (Jami's mom) led the girls around. All the kids who rode had a great time.
Thank you Potter's for a fun afternoon. (Too bad Jami's brother isn't named Harry. I would love to say I was related to Harry Potter.)
Only one more week of summer. I am in complete denial that the kids won't be around to play with me in ten more days. I'll have to squeeze them extra this week.