Friday, May 16, 2014

A Weekend of Parenthood!

This past weekend, Robyn's sister, Megan and her husband, Graham went to Cancun, Mexico.  They didn't invite us.  They never do.  (How rude is that?)  But, I suppose that they've been to Cancun twice without us, and we've been to Hawaii twice without them, so it's fair.

While they were away, we had the opportunity to watch our 2-year-old nephew, Will.  We stayed at their house for the weekend, so that he could be in his own environment, with his own toys and his own bed and everything familiar.

Robyn picked him up Friday afternoon, and I joined the two of them that evening after work.  This was who greeted me when I got there.

He spent the evening doing important things like driving his cars on my face.  When that important work was completed, we moved on to stacking the rings.  However, the rings were pretty offensive.  Every time he stacked them they ended up out of order.  Each time he would briefly lament the sad state of affairs, and then laugh as he dumped them out and restacked them.

Naturally, after he went to bed, we continued playing with his toys.  I explained to Robyn the logic puzzle called, "The towers of Hanoi."  Here she is pondering deeply.
Don't worry.  She totally solved it.

The next morning, we had planned to attend the Birth Mother Walk in Spanish Fork.  It's an event put on by Families Supporting Adoption.  The intent is to honor birth mothers and the sacrifice that they go through that makes adoptive families possible.  Most people go and walk in honor of a specific birth mom.  We pinned a sign to Will's back saying he was walking in honor of his "future cousin's birth mom."  However, he let us know after about 30 seconds that he was not interested in having a sign pinned to him. so that ended pretty quick.

After the walk, everyone comes together in a big group and they all release balloons into the sky.  Before releasing the balloons, Will and I did a photo op together.
Apparently, we're not that great at actually looking at the camera.
When it came time to release the balloons, Will excitedly watched the other balloons drift into the sky. But when we told him he could release his balloon, he gave us a look that said, "Why would I do that?  You know this is a balloon, right?  A BALLOON!  You don't just waste balloons."
Here he is holding tight to his balloon while the others drift into the sky.
After the balloon release they had a few other activities for the kids.  One of them was a race.  They let kids 3 and under race first.  I asked Will if he wanted to race and he said no.  But, when he saw all the kids lining up, he wanted to be where the action was.  He went and stood next to all the other kids.  They all took off running and he watched them run away.  About the time they all started crossing the finish line, he decided it looked fun.  He took off running, laughing gleefully the whole way.  It was pretty much the cutest thing ever.

After the birth mother event, we noticed there was a park nearby.  (And by we noticed, I mean Will noticed, and let us know the importance of visiting the aforementioned park.)

We walked over and had the place to ourselves.
Will slid down every slide.

I joined in on the sliding.

Also, this preciousness occurred.
The saddest part came on Sunday.  Sunday evening I left to go spend time with my Mom for Mother's Day.  Afterward, I was going back to my own house, so that I could leave in the morning to head into work.  I told Will I was leaving, and gave him a hug goodbye.  He looked at me and his bottom lip started to quiver, and tears started to form in his eye.  It was the cutest and saddest thing I've ever seen.  I promised him we would hang out again soon.  Robyn promised him she would do her best to be as fun as me.  (But let's be honest, that's hardly possible.)

All in all, it was a great weekend.  I could get used to being a parent.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

I Stood in the Sky!

I totally stood in the sky.

More accurately, I totally stood in a cloud.  Either way, it was totally cool.

This story really begins a little less than a year ago.  We were staying in Lake Town near Bear Lake, and I went for a little walk in the morning.  I discovered Laketown Reservoir and also found this cute little mountain.

At the time, I thought to myself, "Self, wouldn't it be fun to climb up there and stand in a cloud?"

I also responded to myself, "Self, yes it would."

I climbed about halfway up the mountain before realizing the following:

I'm fat.

I'm old.

It's time for breakfast.

Those 3 facts prevented me from standing in a cloud last year.

This past weekend we were in Laketown again.  I was a year older, but I was significantly less fat, and I ate breakfast before beginning my journey, so there weren't too many barriers to me standing in a cloud.

This time, I convinced Robyn to go on the hike with me as well.

It started off pretty simple.  We had to actually get to the mountain which involved walking along a muddy dirt road.

Cuteness in the foreground, our destination in the background.

Eventually we actually reached the mountain and started climbing.  However, it turns out that mountains are very mean.  They play this mean trick where you luck up to the highest point you can see, you climb to that point only to discover there is way more mountain behind it.  I suppose it's sort of like life.  Just when you think you're done, you realize you've barely begun.  But let's not get too philosophical.

At the bottom of the mountain it was raining.  As we climbed higher into the cloud, it started snowing.  I thought it was really cool.  Robyn's views on this particular adventure were slightly different.  She said such things as, "I hate this mountain."

When we were about 80% of the way to the top, I realized she wasn't having fun anymore.  I told her I would just run to the top super fast.  She sat down and waited for me while I ascended as quickly as I could.

One of the coolest things I saw on the way up was this tree.  It totally had an eerie feel to it, all alone in the cloud.
 I finally made it to the top.  I wish I had a picture of the cool view to show you.  But the complete lack of view was the cool thing that I came there to see.  I really have no way to knowing if I made it to the actual top.  All I know is that it started sloping downward again and I couldn't see anything that was higher.  But visibility was only 20 feet or so, so there could have been another thousand foot climb and I would have never been aware of it.
This is what the top looked like.  It wasn't that glamorous.
I yelled to Robyn that I was standing in the sky.  She wasn't particularly impressed.  Her response was, "Come back. I'm cold."

I came back like a good kid.  But not before reveling in my own awesomeness at standing in a cloud in the sky.