Monday, June 28, 2010

Lewis and Clark

I got the chance to go to Great Falls, Montana last week with the other U.S. History teachers in my district as part of the Teaching American History grant.  I had a fantastic time!  It was fun to be with other teachers, who have the same dorky things that they are interested in, and find our more about the Lewis and Clark Expedition.  Here are highlights of the week:We rafted the Missouri River.  It was amazing to know that Lewis and Clark went against the current on their way to the Pacific Ocean!

It was a great ride.  On our first ride, we stopped for lunch at the side of the river, which was beautiful.  One of the great things in the place was a three-sided outhouse, that had "Lewis and Clark Urinal" engraved on the back.
We saw the Great Falls of Great Falls, Montana
We went on a tour of the portages, and also the place where Lewis and Clark had to make a decision about which river to use.  I tell you what--they were tough!  That portaging was a TON of work!

We also went to Fort Benton, and had an awesome guide.  He was dressed up like a mountain man, and told us about how the mountain men were friends with the Indians, because they sold the Indians goods.  Very cool.
We saw the bison from the Smithsonian museum in Washington D.C.
Another rafting trip:
We saw the Buffalo Jump at Buffalo Jump State Park.  OK, crazy story!  So the tribes of Indians would appoint a teenage boy to lead the buffalo off the cliff!  There was a BIG chance that he would die in the process!  Wow!  We also played some great Indian games there.
And we went to the Lewis and Clark Expedition Festival.  We thought it was going to be WAY bigger than it was, but it was still cool.  We saw people telling us about stuff like the weapons used by Lewis and Clark, old canoes, and Native American dances.
OK, now the funny part of the story.  In Great Falls, there is a bar called the Sip 'n Dip.  It is located at a hotel, and they have girls dress up as mermaids and swim in the pool.  They also have an 85-year-old lady, named Piano Pat, who comes to play the organ.  It is funny.
Anyway, a very cool trip.  I learned a lot and had a lot of fun.  But, like always, it is good to be home!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Free stuff!

So I was just on facebook and checked out my friend's (ok, friend of a friend) blog for a free giveaway!  Cool!  Check it out!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Summer Vacation

After the end of school, we had a week to take a vacation before Chris's summer school and graduate school starts.  It was so much fun!  We went to Mesa Verde National Park.  It was great fun!  I took TONS of pictures, and here are just a few.  One of the great parts of teaching junior high history is that all of the money that we spent will be able to be reimbursed at tax time.  We kept all of our receipts for the reimbursements!  When we went to the Visitors Center to get tickets for the tours of the ruins, we told the lady that we wanted to see everything.  Seeing the ruins made Chris feel like he was visiting a foreign country.
Chris squeezing through the tights tunnel at Balcony House.  It was a tight squeeze!
  We saw a lizard on one of our tours.  He loved having his picture taken!
Long house was one of our favorites!  It is so cool to see how the Anasazi people lived!
After Mesa Verde, we went to Durango, Colorado and took a train ride to Silverton on the Narrow Gauge Railroad.  It was tons of fun to see this gorgeous world we live in!

Then, we met our ward at Youth Conference at Zion Ponderosa.  We had a ton of fun with the youth in our ward.  Our ward had a cabin, which we filled with 25 or so people.  It was a great time.  There was a foosball table in the loft that the boys decided that they should move outside.  So funny!
This is our mini-golf group.  We had a great time relaxing, but are glad to be home again for a somewhat normal life!

A very special little visitor

On the last day of school, we got to borrow our niece for a sleepover.  It was so fun to spend time with her and to get to spoil her rotten.  First, we played with her "princesses," read some books, and pretended like we went shopping at a pet store.  Then, we went to Pizza Pie Cafe, which is a great place to take kids.  She ate way more dessert than dinner, but we didn't care!  We went to a ward party and stayed for a little while while she enjoyed running around the gym.  When she was sick of that, we came home, got her ready for bed, and watched Shrek from the bed in the living room.  The hope was for her to fall asleep while the movie was going.  She stayed awake the whole time, but Chris fell asleep!  After Shrek, I kissed her goodnight and gave her some books and some princesses.  I saw her a little while later, reading books to the princesses.  I tried to sneak into the living room and take a picture of her.  She saw me, but she was not shy to have a picture taken.  Then she posed reading her books to the princess and the stuffed lion she borrowed from us.  I heard her talking in the living room a little while later, so I sat up and asked her if she was okay.  She said, "Yeah.  I'm just saying my prayers."  We had already said prayers with her before Shrek.  What a sweet girl!  In the morning, we enjoyed some chocolate chip pancakes together.  Like I say, not the healthiest thing, but when you are an aunt, you can spoil her rotten!  We are so lucky to have the cutest niece!