Friday, July 31, 2009

Family Vacation 2009

The Winns (or three of us) had a "Staycation" for our family vacation this year. Chris and Allen flew in from Orlando for a fun and frivolous ten days (or so). Because I had the most inflexible job, I had the freedom of floating in and out of the festivities.

We began by hiking Ensign Peak to get an aerial view of the beautiful Salt Lake Valley. (Hiking Ensign Peak always reminds me of Seminary Council and the "Limo Date" where we were stranded for a few hours.) Anyway, the hike was great! It was a little hazy but still beautiful blue skies.

After the hike, we ate lunch at the first-ever KFC. Then we headed to the Bingham Copper Mines. We took our obligatory picture in front of the huge tire. We watched the trucks move here and there, picking up dirt, unloading dirt. Then we watched the informative movie and saw all the wonderful things that the Copper Mine produces that keeps this world turning.Then I got a four day break from the family fun as everyone (except me) traveled south to Lake Powell. The report was they all had a great time! I had a great time as well!

Chris and Allen came home earlier than Mom and Dad so we got some sibling time in. We had a great time together on the 24th of July (which is a holiday in Utah). We watched part of the Days of '47 Parade on TV and then decided to fling ourselves in the middle of all the fun. We drove past the So You Think You Can Dance auditions (more than once) being held that day. There were A LOT of wannabes! Who knows, maybe someone will make it to the show?! Then we went to the Hogle Zoo (with MANY Utahns)! There were a lot of people there. Most of the animals were sleeping in the shade because it was such a hot day! The real animals were the toddlers around naptime. I definitely didn't want to take any of them home with me!
I think it's a rule that you have to get your picture taken at this fountain when you go to the zoo, so we did.

I took the guys to the airport the following day and I was back to my freedom until the parents came home a few days later. I loved spending time with my family! We had a great time together, whether it was playing croquet in the backyard or eating lunch at Cafe Rio. Allen is such a great addition to our family!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Independence Day is my new Favorite Holiday!

I had it pointed out to me at work that Independence Day is the BEST holiday of the year. After all the reasons were pointed out to me, I totally agreed! What's better than hot temperatures, food, fireworks, family, friends, and freedom? I don't think anything is! Plus you don't have to give anyone a present. Here's the run down of my Independence Day weekend activities.

Thursday after work, I had the awesome privilege of volunteering as an usher at the Oquirrh Mountain Temple Open House. (That completed serving in four different temples over the past two weeks.) I was assigned to Sealing Room 2. I have to say that Sealing Room 2 was the cleanest and most well runned room there was that night! It was great to see the variety of people that attended the Open House that night.

Friday, my Mom and I traveled north with the top down in her Mustang convertible. (Hence the pink flesh in the following picture.) We visited with my Grandma in Providence, Utah. I hadn't seen her for a few months. It was great to visit with her. Then Mom and I continued north to Bear Lake, Idaho. We ate a delicious dinner at LaBeau's. We had the all-American meal of a burger, fries, and shake. Yum! Then we saw my friend Michael perform at the Pickleville Playhouse in the musical Annie Get Your Gun. He plays the lead character of Frank Butler. He did an amazing job! Truth be told, I was anticipating my shake at LaBeau's more than seeing him perform that evening. (Sorry Michael!) After the evening was over, I ended up enjoying the musical MUCH more than my shake. Go figure! So if you are heading to Bear Lake this summer, I highly recommend seeing Annie Get Your Gun at the Pickleville Playhouse. (Come on! What else is there to do after dark at Bear Lake?!) Here's a picture of us afterwards.

Saturday was my laid back holiday. I slept in late (since I got home from the performance around 2 AM). I spent most of the day outdoors. It was a perfect day! I had a barbecue with my parents, an uncle, and some neighbors. We were just chillin' after our barbecue feast, chit-chatting away when the real excitement of the day began. Behind my house is a canal. Next to the canal is a gravel area where people can walk, ride their horse, or ride a four wheeler. Whatever you prefer. As we were talking, we heard two four wheelers speeding past our house a few times. Then all of a sudden, It happened. By It, I mean the sound of plastic being crunched against plastic. It's not a comforting sound. We ran to the fence and looked over. There was a girl sitting on the ground and the guy on the other four wheeler was just looking at her. We asked her if she was alright. At first, she said she couldn't breath but she soon got her breath back. Then the guy dragged the plastic saddlebag that goes on the four wheeler out of the canal. (Good thing it is water proof!) He put it back on the girl's four wheeler. She lost her sunglasses and looked for them. We think they sunk to the bottom of the canal. She slowly got up and got back on her four wheeler. As she started the four wheeler and drove away, we noticed she was doing everything with her left hand. (We think she sprained or even broke her right wrist when she got thrown off the four wheeler.) Then they drove away, slower than before. Life's lessons learned. How can you top that excitement?! I knew you would ask. We drove to the temple hill and watched at least 6 different cities fireworks (along with countless home fireworks). It was a fabulous day!

Sunday, I went to a friends' house and hung out with her family for a little while. It was a great weekend. I think I'm going to start a petition at work to always work four eight hour days and have three days off. I wonder if they'll go for it?? I have to start it now while this past weekend is fresh on their minds. :)