Monday, August 31, 2009

Hello hello! So, we just got back from a 3 day camping/gold panning trip to Bear River. Hubby had Friday off as did MoMo (she only has a 4 day school week) and we decided to let Big R skip school. First week of school, no homework, yet. Anyway, we packed up and headed out. We got there around 1pm and set up camp, though we aren't as elaborately outfitted as some people. No shower set up or anything. LOL The area is so nice. Trees, water and wild blackberries and grapes! The kids started right in eating blackberries. The grapes weren't ripe. Right off of our campsite was a path that led to a sort of grotto in the trees. A creek flowed down through the trees and bushes until it joined up with the river. This is where the creek came down.
And this is the view down the river as the sun was setting.
We set right to work panning for gold. Hubby had been there a couple weeks before panning with some buddies from work and brought home some gold. So we knew there was definitely gold there and we wanted to find it! Here are some shots of the kids trying their hand at panning.
And one of MoMo in the water. It was cold!
But, actually that's not why she's making this face here. She was just being silly and gave me this face instead of a smile. But it makes a good cold water picture, doesn't it? LOL
And we found gold! Big R actually panned the largest piece that we found. After that, he was pretty much done panning. After the first bit where the kids panned some mostly we had a system where Hubby would dig up some material and classify it (weed out any large rocks) and then pass it to me to pan any gold out. We did pretty well. Flakes and tiny bits in almost every single pan full of stuff. Nothing too big, not the nugget I was hoping for, but gold nonetheless. The kids (and occasionally hubby and I) splashed around in the water and ate berries.
All too soon, it was time to load up and head home. We were bummed to have to go but we brought a bucketful of stuff to pan home with us. So, here's our little gold pile.
Hubby is now seriously infected with gold fever. He is ready to go back to pan some more. Well, anyway, that's our latest adventure. If anyone wants to come visit, we'll be happy to take you out panning. We'll even let you use our gold pan!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Well, hello again. I know it's been awhile since my last post. I really didn't intend for it to take so long before I posted. Sorry. Hope no one was holding their breath waiting for the story of our Seaworld trip. LOL Anyway, I started uploading the rest of the pics here and realized that it's a LOT of photos. I decided to upload to Flickr and once I got it all uploaded and everything something went awry. I was going to post a link to the pics but everything started coming up in Chinese or something (sorry, I don't know how to distinguish different Asian characters). perhaps you can search and find them on Flickr or else check my Facebook page. I don't know. I'm really annoyed right now because it took forever to upload. Grrr!
Well, anyway, we took it easier on day 2 at Seaworld. Got up around 8am and ate breakfast, loaded up and drove to Seaworld. It was early afternoon before we got there but the weather was great. Warm but with a cool bay breeze. We saw almost everything there-Shamu, polar bears, sharks, seals, sea lions...The last time we went to SeaWorld (before we moved) the kids were terrified of the seals and sea lions. They made a lot of scary noise. But this time the kids weren't afraid. We got to touch and feed the bat rays and also hold the starfish. MoMo didn't throw the starfish this time. She did that once when we went and she was younger. She was done holding it so she just threw it back into the water! Poor starfish. But now she's old enough to treat them nicely. So, we wanted to watch the Dolphin Show but when we got to the last show of the night, it was full so we couldn't get in. Instead we went and saw the Sea Lions Tonite show. Big R thought it was hilarious! He was squealing with laughter and the lady sitting in front of us kept turning around to look at him. He was (almost) cracking himself up. And then after the sun had gone down and it was getting chilly, someone had the idea to go on the rapids ride. We load up and head down and the first set of rapids water splashed up and soaked MoMo to the bone. I looked at her anxiously, thinking she'd be upset but she had the biggest smile on her face! So, we all ended up soaking wet, except for Big R. Of course, he had the one beach towel that we had with us. Since we were already drenched and there was no line we figured we may as well go again. I don't think any of us had a dry spot on us when we got off. Except Big R, who was still almost entirely dry. And we were freezing. Brrr! It was close to closing time so we got some more towels (thanks Grandma!) and headed to the car and changed into dry things before heading home. Well, to Grandma's. We had a grand time and the kids are already talking about "when we go back to Disneyland."
We finally made it back home to NV last week. Just in time for school to start here. Tuesday was the first day of school. So far everyone has done a great job at getting up early and getting ready for school on time. MoMo's favorite part of kindergarten is sitting on the carpet and singing "The Eensy Weensy Spider." Big R likes 2nd grade because he hasn't had any homework. Yet. Oh, yeah. And there was also a weekend (last weekend) where hubby and I went to Las Vegas (without the kids) for a concert. But that's a story for another day...

Friday, August 14, 2009

Hello. I spent most of yesterday recovering from our trip. Whew! I'm not as young as I used to be! LOL It wasn't too bad but the first day I wore shoes that rubbed my feet all wrong and I got the biggest blister on my little toe. Ouch! So, for day 2 I opted to wear my flip flops and that was so much better. Anyway, we left at 5am to drive to Disneyland and made it there, parked, got my ticket and had about 15 minutes before the park opened. Almost perfect timing. ANd that even includes the time we spent when I had to pull over (on the downhill portion of the Cajon Pass, no less. SCARY!) so Big R could get sick. Poor guy. But he was just fine after that. Here are the kids on the tram to the front entrance.
And here they are with Grandma waiting for the park to open.

I had used RideMax software to make us a schedule. If you haven't heard of it, it's a special program to calculate the best schedule based on the day you go to minimize your wait times. On the way into the park some of the characters were on Main Street for photos. We got pics with Pluto. So, according to my LIST (LOL Me and my lists) we should go to the Astro Rockets first and a runner (me) should run over to Space Mtn to get a Fast Pass. I didn't quite make it back to the rockets in time to ride with them because I had trouble working the FastPass machine. Totally operator error. I was putting the tickets in upside down. Anyway, after they got off the rockets we did the Buzz Lightyear ride. The kids loved both of those rides but I wasn't sure about the next one: Big Thunder Mtn Railroad. And I wasn't sure MoMo would meet the 40" height requirement. But she was tall enough! And both of them absolutely loved the fast ride. I rode with MoMo and Big R and my MIL rode in the seat behind us. The whole time I could hear Big R whooping and hollering. Things like, "Yee haw!" and "Woo hoo!" and "Yeah!" I wasn't too sure about MoMo. She wasn't smiling on it but not crying, either. But when we got off she got this big smile and said, "That was awesome!" I guess I've got dare devil children. LOL We got off schedule from my list but still we didn't wait very long for most rides. We hit the Teacups, Space Mtn, Star Tours, Roger Rabbit, the Go Gadget coaster in Toon Town, explored Toon Town, met Minnie Mouse at her house in Toon Town, and rode It's a Small World. Big R didn't want to go on that one. He said, "It's gonna be BORING." But once we were on it there were lots of things to see and he enjoyed it. We also did Pirates of the Carribbean, the Haunted Mansion and the Matterhorn. We were in line at the Matterhorn and almost at the front, maybe 2 cars worth of people ahead of us. Then they had "technical difficulties." They announced that they expected the wait to be 20 minutes until the ride was operational again. We decided since we were so close, we'd wait. After a while, they again announced a 20 minute wait. We debated whether to wait or go and decided to wait a bit longer. Finally, they got it running again and we went on the ride. Up to that point, that had been our longest wait in line. We did Dumbo, of course. What's a trip to Disney without going on Dumbo?We also did Autopia. Here's a pic of Big R peeking out of the yellow car.They have a fun Jedi training show that we watched. They pick kids out of the audience to train as Jedis. The kids get to wear a cloak and use a plastic light saber. We were trying to get Riley to volunteer but he was apprehensive. But when Darth Vader came out and the kids got to duel with him he was disappointed that he didn't volunteer. All MoMo wanted was some Minnie Mouse ears. We kept seeing people with all sorts of cool ear hats. Not just plain black Mickey or black with a bow for Minnie anymore. They have pink ones, glittery ones, blue ones, bride and groom ones...So many! MoMo picked out pink ones with a little crown. Big R got a Goofy ball cap with Goofy ears hanging on it. There is a picture but it's on MIL's camera and not uploaded to the computer, yet. Plus she's got a lot of others, too. I'll have to post those some day in the future. For our last ride Big R wanted to go on the Indiana Jones one even though it was an hour wait and we waited too late to use FastPass. MoMo had gone on all the other rides so we didn't really think that she'd bee too short to do Indy. But after we'd waited in line a bit, one of the workers told us she wasn't tall enough. I felt so bad. She cried, poor thing. But MIL took her to the Tiki Room and Tarzan's Treehouse while Big R and I waited for Indy. (Big R in line for Indy) We finally got all the way to the front and loaded on the ride when there was a malfunction of some sort. I figured they'd start it up again soon but this time I guess something was really wrong. Everyone had to exit the ride completely. They herded everyone outside and gave us all a ticket that works like a FastPass on any ride. Unfortunately, we were on our way out of the park so we couldn't use it. :( Oh well. We did a lot of the rides and had a fantastic time. The kids did such a great job, even though they got up before it was light (4:30am!) and walked all day. They were troopers and didn't complain or whine (too much). As we were riding the tram back to the parking lot we were able to see the fireworks before we headed back to our hotel. The kids were asleep almost as soon as their heads hit their pillows. My little angels. So, that about covers our Disneyland adventure. I have more pics to post later and I'll write up Seaworld with pics from that as well.
On a final, sad note, I'm not sure when I will be able to do that, though, because my husband's grandmother passed away today. I'm not sure as yet what will happen in the next few days. I will try to post again here soon.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Well, this will just be a short post for now. We got back from our Disneyland/Seaworld trip late last night. Well, really this morning at 1 am. So, we're still trying to recover. LOL Anyway, just wanted to let you all know we made it back (not to NV, but to AV) and that we had a GREAT time! More details and some pics later...

Monday, August 10, 2009

Big R lost his first tooth today!!! The last few days he's been saying , "Today I will try to pull it out." but he hadn't gotten it out. This morning he said he just moved it with his tongue and it came right out. And the bit of blood from it didn't freak him out, either. Normally he doesn't do well with the sight of any blood, let alone his own. Wow! What a big boy he is. So, now, of course, little sis is going around saying she has a loose tooth. She wants to do everything he does. Here ia a pic of Big R with a gap where his tooth used to be.

In other news, I got my hair done today. My MIL took me as a birthday treat. I got highlights and a cute style which I only hope I can style on my own. I like it a lot. I don't have a pic, yet, though. Just got back and had to share the tooth news.
Well, I've got things to do to get ready for our big day tomorrow. Talk atcha later!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Ok, the grand total for the cans and plastic we recycled was $28.66! Wow! I wasn't expecting that much. Big R said, "That's it?" But I told him, "Hey, it's better than if we just threw it all away and got nothing!" And he did, I think, feel a bit better after that. So, thanks again for helping!
Hello again! So, I made it to AV fine on Tuesday. And got reunited with the kiddos. I've been getting lots of hugs and kisses from my little girl and even a few from Big R. And speaking of Big R, he's got his very first loose tooth! So, I guess soon we'll have a visit from the Tooth Fairy. I wasn't quite sure how much she brings these days so I asked Big R how much he thought she'd bring and he said, " She brings you a coin." Well, I guess that means anything from 1 cent to $1. Whew! I figured he'd be expecting several dollars or something.
We're getting ready to take almost a trunk full of cans and plastic bottles to the recycling center. Thanks to everyone who donated! I'll have to give you the grand total when we get back. It's going toward the Disneyland/Seaworld fund. The kids are getting very excited as it gets closer. And I've been checking it out online so we have sort of a plan. It's very different from the last time I was there, probably like 10 years ago. That sure makes me feel old!
And both kids have been swimming, swimming, swimming while they were here. Big R is swimming around with no floaties or anything. And even little MoMo swims underwater by herself, coming up for air and then diving back down again. I watched them swim with their Grandma last night. I decided to sit out. But I can't believe how many times I watched each of the kids get put and jump in again from the side of the pool. Over and over again. I watched many variations from the cannonball to the pencil (I call it the toothpick) to newly invented ones such as the "airbag deflator" (butt first-apparently your butt cheeks are your airbags). It was very entertaining.
So, anyway, I think that's all for now. I guess I better get to the recycling center. Talk to you later!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Happy National Ice Cream Sandwich Day! You know you want one! LOL Anyway, welcome to another rockhounding adventure post. So, yesterday hubby and I were having a lazy Saturday. Hubby asked me if I wanted to do something, go somewhere. We then had the old "what do you wanna do? I dunno, what do you wanna do? I dunno, what do YOU wanna do?" exchange. Finally I was nominated (declared?) the event planner. So, I decided we ought to head out to a place where we had never been and check out some rockhounding opportunities there. We got our supplies together and off we went. Mind you, this was already almost 4pm. Anyway, we found the first spot and hunted around for agate, opalite and petrified wood. There are also rumors that people have found precious opal here as well. We found some interesting opalite (no precious opal) but the best stuff we found was really cool bubbly rhyolite. It's covered in nodules that make it all bubbly looking. Hubby took this pic of the sky while we were there.
Here are a couple of the rocks we found.
So, then we decided to take a look at another nearby spot. As we were driving back to the main road, Hubby suddenly says, "Oh, man! There's an antelope!" I looked and running right beside the truck was an antelope! Like a mere 10 feet away. Apparently it had been laying on the ground near the dirt road and as we passed he jumped up and ran. He gradually pulled ahead of the truck then raced across the road in front of us and off into the desert. It was about this time that I finally thought to get a picture. Unfortunately I wasn't able to get a good shot by that point. We kept driving and a bit further down the road we spotted a herd of antelope. I did get a shot of a couple of those. Enlarge the pic and you can see 2 antelope on the right side.
We were driving to the second location and we came across a herd of wild horses. Part of the herd was right in the road as you can see in this pic.
The sad part was that once they moved out of the road we could see that one was injured. It was limping badly and looked as though one of it's rear feet was broken. This one here. And it looked as though it had a baby. I felt kind of sad. It's likely it will be mountain lion food. And the baby won't have a mommy. But that's the life of a wild horse, I guess. We made it to the second site but the sun was going down. We looked around a bit but with the light fading it was hard to really find any of the fluorite that is supposed to be here. And we did see some large mountain lion tracks. We didn't stay too long and all the while I was feeling as though something was watching me, ready to pounce. But this area was promising and we'll most likely go back in the future and take the kids. We did find some rocks but the story of the day was actually the wildlife we saw (and some we didn't actually see but saw evidence of). Pretty amazing to think that you can find all this wildlife in Nevada.
Well, that's about it. Have a great day and don't forget you ice cream sandwich today!