Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Three Quarters of the Way

I wanted to write a post at about halfway, but yeah, that didn't happen.  So here we are, at about three-quarters and that will have to do.  What can I say, the time these last couple of weeks has literally sped by along with the miles since we left our house in the Village and began our pilgrimage.  

The time we spent at the farm with Mom and Papa John was good, but I got sick with a weird cold/flu/allergy thing that kind of knocked me for a loop there...the kids enjoyed going to VBS and spending time in the creek.  All too soon, though, the day came for us to here we are, all packed up.

We took two days to get out to Arizona, where we had the opportunity to ride the train up to see the Grand Canyon...that was an amazing adventure for our family and we highly recommend the experience!  

First of all, there was a funny cowboy show complete with crazy shootouts and stuff.  The kids got a ringside seat!

Then we boarded the train for the 2 hour ride north to the Canyon.  The scenery was breathtaking in areas and we enjoyed some cowboy entertainment as well.  

Once we got there, we had about 3 hours to explore and see what there was to see...of course, we wanted to do much more than we could ever possibly do in three hours, but oh well, maybe next time!  

All too soon, it was time to meet back at the Grand Canyon Railway station for the ride home...but I confess to having a certain sense of relief at getting away from the edge of that abyss!  Apparently, all that open space below me activated my vertigo AND my motherly instincts of protection for the kids because I felt not a little anxiety whenever they would get even remotely close to the edge!  

One of the highlights of the trip home was spotting an elk among the pines...I wasn't able to snap a picture of it, but here is a photo of some of the beauty of the pine forest around the Canyon...and another view of the train...

The other highlight was getting 'robbed' by the same outlaws who had performed in the Wild West show that morning...this is how they get their tips!  

After that, we got to go to camp!  It was nothing but a blessing to attend the Pioneers Mid-Americas Region conference and meet our new coworkers in this region...some of them we already knew and found out that we have a lot of mutual friends with others...all in all, we felt welcome, included and valued as members of this group. 

The kids also had a wonderful time and really fell in love with Mr. Billy and Miss Erika and the others who were there to help with the kids...they were also pretty excited to see Mr. Todd, who had been their leader at our orientation with Pioneers in Orlando!  So here are some pictures from our time at camp...

Miguel ate a beetle!  Ew!

Jkaile spent hours pursuing other beetle friends...the ones Miguel didn't eat.

Hanging out with friends...

Making silly faces...

Now THAT is a bad hair day!!!!

Gracia being her usual composed self...
I could, of course, go on and on, but since this post is getting long, I'll have to wait to tell about the next part of our trip...

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