Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Shields & Clark Expeditions

This past weekend was really fun. (Minus the awefulness of the BYU game-which I don't want to talk about!) We went canoeing out to Utah Lake with Jenni and Grayden. We have some very funny circumstances when we are with those two. It was a perfect autumn day and the sun was setting. All very picturesque.

Then we came upon these fellows:

Ha ha! I'm sorry, but I do not see how you could flip these canoes without wanting to. However, they did not know how to put it right side up. Thus, we found them like this. Asking for help. They were little scouters who were trying to earn their merit badges. We saved their oars from floating away and we tried our best to help them, but we were in normal clothes and did not want to end up like them. So we were telling them how to flip the boat back up but it had too much water inside of it and so the final advice we gave was to swim for shore and fix the boat there. To which, Jenni quickly replied, "Kick in the water! In the water!" To avoid splashing. Don't worry, we saw their scout leaders paddling back for them a little further down.

Please acknowledge who did most of the work:

Ok, we actually have developed into quite a good team. It takes practice. When we got where the river dumps into the lake it really was beautiful. We put our canoes up on the rocks and took a walk around. The wind was starting to pick up and we didn't want to have to paddle against the wind so we went back to get in- only the Clark's boat slipped away from them and quickly started to drift out to sea. I really was half ready to see Gray or Michael dive into the water after it. Luckily they were quick thinkers, and the boys jumped in our canoe to catch up with the empty one.
They caught up to it and it was quite a sight watching single canoers trying to get back to shore.
Finally, we all were in and paddling back. By this time, we were getting hungry and selection of places to eat gets tricky in Provo on the weekends because the lines become unbearable. While we were debating where to go, Michael realized he had a "skip to the front of the line" pass at T.G.I. Friday's. That made the decision easy. We got there and the manager got us right in and to a table. Everything was great. We had a free appetizer and soon thereafter our meals were brought out. For some reason, the general manager brought out Michael's dish and was starting a conversation with us and mentioned that Michael's dish was only $5 because it was part of this special they were having and that the person who seated us should have told us. (I don't think Gray was too happy to find that out.) When the general manager noticed that we were shocked by this news he continued to say, "Who was it that seated you?" etc. We didn't want anyone to get in trouble so we were going on about how great the young manager had been when he seated us. The general manager didn't let it be. He got the young manager who had seated us and informed us that he would be buying a dessert for us that night. We felt kind of bad, but also loved the dessert. It was a very comical and wonderful evening.

Monday, September 14, 2009

{I secretly want to be on HGTV}

I think we can blame watching many hours of HGTV this summer for the sudden increase of desire to do some projects. This weekend we bought two end tables off of Craig's list. After some research, we have discovered for being such little things, end tables are expensive! So we were glad to find a really good bargain on this set. They started out a light pine color and so we sanded them and stained them a pretty red mahogany.
Here's a before/after shot- kind of:
Here's the sanding: (He did all the sanding because that sound gives me the super chills. It's the equivalent of nails on a chalk board to me! ugh!)

Despite him being the only one in the photo, I really did help with the staining. (Someone had to take the picture!)

Now we have a lovely end table to cozy up our little home! Thank you HGTV!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

...where buffalo roam...

This past weekend we went out to Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake. Michael had never been there. Being from Utah, I knew what awaited me- the smell of the salt water with all the brine shrimp and lots & lots of bugs. But I still went. We actually had some fun. It's amazing to see how much it has changed just from my Elementary School Field Trips. The water level has gone down a lot and to get to the water from the parking lot has become quite the hike! The smell wasn't as strong as I remembered, but the bug factor was definitely still there.

We went with a friend of Michael's from work, Marcus, and his wife Erica. They were so fun!

We all took our bikes and we rode around the island for a bit. (7 Miles- I am quite proud and not as sore as I thought I would be.) While we were riding, Michael would be in front of me and I would see at least 20 big flies and other insects on the back of his shirt. It creeped me out and as I would help swat them off, I kept wondering how many were on my back. *shudder!*

It was a fun ride though because there was little traffic (if you don't count the bugs, grasshoppers, and the few antelope & bison) and the view to the beautiful Wasatch Front from the island's perspective was really amazing!

After bike rides came a nice picnic lunch that included my mom's unbeatable homemade salsa. Yum! Then it was off to the beach. Again, being from Utah, I knew what awaited me- the salt water that will literally burn your flesh if you have any type of cut or wound and the MILLIONS of gnats. Michael was so excited to get in the water and float. (It is pretty fascinating.) So he and the Hardy's went out into the water. I enjoyed the walking on the sand/ wading in the water part. There was a good size crowd and it really looked like we were at the beach. People were in bikinis and yes, there were a few older gentlemen in speedos enjoying the lake that day as well. It was funny to see sun bathers putting sun tan lotion on. I just kept wondering how many gnats were getting stuck on their oily bodies. Seriously, the beach is so crazy because you will take a step and what looks like a cloud of dust or sand will come off the sand. Only it's not a cloud of dust, it's the gnats. Here are a few hundred that took a fancy to Michael's shoe: (Look closely!)

I really just love long weekends- especially, when there are so many adventures to be had!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

A tale of two weddings and a tradition

A couple of weeks ago we got to pull out the top layer of this beauty from the freezer.

We were in transit so we had our car all packed up and we stopped and visited our friends- Graydon and Jenni. While we were there, they said they had just pulled their wedding cake out of the freezer and were kind enough to offer us some. We then replied that we actually had our wedding cake waiting in the car. So we all pulled out our cakes and enjoyed the splendor of frozen, year-old cakes together. They actually weren't that bad. I love traditions!