Wednesday, August 25, 2010

heber city: family, fun, and freaky friends

After months of anticipation, we headed to Heber City toward the end of July to spend some time with the Wo-Jo family.  And oh boy!  A time we had!  Despite the fact that Emmy broke her thumb within the first hour we were there, the rest of the trip went by without a hitch.   

After two and something hours of "Are we there yet?", we knew we were in for a good time when we saw over a dozen of deer as we climbed the dirt roads leading to the cabin.  The girls excitedly kept a running tally.
Uncle Caleb and Aunt Haylee had found a perfect cabin to spend the weekend.  We pretty much filled the place, and concluded that with all the food we brought, we could have easily survived through the winter.  (The kids, I am sure, would have been happy to give it a whirl.)

The boys (big and little) kept busy doing what boys do best.  (Don't worry, the target is a pop can.)
And the girls were happy to spend some time getting beautiful with Aunt Shelly and Aunt Haylee.
Court and I spent a bit of time checking out the wildlife on the four wheeler,
while the kids spent their days looking for creatures at the pond.
You wouldn't believe how many salamanders the cousins caught (boys and girls)!  One of the uncles came back to the cabin laughing after a trip to the pond.  Another family was down there, and was so proud to show him that they had actually caught a live salamander!  He wished we could have all seen the shock on their faces when our kids came scrambling up the bank with their 20+ catch of the day.  Of course, they proudly offered to share their secret.  For those of you interested in salamander hunting, turns out you have to look sideways in the water, not straight in.  According to our kids, you do this and your are a shoe-in for catching a new friend.

In case your are wondering?  Yes, we have a new friend.  With each of the cousins begging to take one home, I passed the buck and told them to go ask their dad, knowing he'd never say yes.  I should have known better.  They wisely caught him during a heated foosball tournament with the uncles and he nodded a quick "sure" to get them off his back.  Well, even still.  I thought the little bugger would live a few days.  A week at the most.  Now, a month later, we still have this growing, slimy thing living in a fishbowl in Ryenne's room.  Even better?  A few people have told us that salamanders will easily live for years.

Years?  How did this happen?  The water is now a putrid, almost fluorescent green color.  Every time I tell Ryenne that she needs to change the water, she remarks, "But mom, this is it's natural habitat."  My problem is this:  I never wanted the swamp to be my natural habitat. 

I'll just say one thing.  NEVER say never.
In between all the creepy-creature-catching, the girls had plenty of fun with all of their cousins.

And we knew Grandma had arrived when we saw these three sidled up to the counter with a bag of chips, a few oreos, and a can of soda pop to wash it all down.   
We'll never forget our last night at the cabin.  Uncle Caleb was a champ and hooked up his trailer to take everyone on a little ride under the stars.  The brave ones bundled up in blankets for the adventure.
Complete with Uncle Cole's antics (ever seen a great big guy on a leetle weensy bike?),
and stories of the now-infamous Cabin Man, we had a whole lot of fun.
We topped off the night with a little music and some dancin'. 
Uncle Darrell even busted out a few break-dance moves.
All in all, our trip was a smashing success!  We had ourselves the best time.  After all, what is there not to love?  Family, friends, and fun.  It doesn't get much better than that.

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