Monday, August 23, 2010

Detroit Zoo Trip

Last week we went to Detroit to go to the zoo with Grandma Jennifer, Aunt Abby, Mason and Emily. We spent the day at the zoo, went to Rainforest Cafe for dinner, stayed in a hotel (Mason and Emily had never done that before) and did some shopping before coming home the next day. We had a great time and made some more memories!

Spending the night in a zoo!

For Girl Scouts we went to Binder Park Zoo in Battle Creek and spent the night. We had such a great time! We stayed right in the zoo in a discovery center and had activities planned by the zoo. The next day we were able to spend the day in the zoo and see all the animals. Besides TONS of mosquitoes and really hot and humid weather, we had a pleasant experience.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Anniversary Trip

Almost two weeks ago, we went on a short vacation to celebrate our 10th anniversary. To say this trip was a challenge to plan and actually take is an understatement. We scheduled it and changed it at least 4 times because of Matt's work schedule. I was not very optimistic that we would be able to go and only believed it when we were all in the car driving south. We brought the kids to Missouri to stay with Grandma and Papa. We dropped them off, had a tasty dinner and hit the road for Arkansas. We had reservations at 3 different hotels so we could cover as much ground as possible in the few days we had. We started in Bentonville, Ar the first night and toured a cave while we were there. It was a lot of fun. Before leaving that area we went to look for the Duggars. I cannot believe I am actually admitting this but we knew they lived really close! We were able to go to the car lot that the oldest Duggar operates and got a picture but unfortunately they were closed and it was empty because they were repaving the lot. Riley would really have been jealous if I saw a Duggar! We were making fun of ourselves the whole time!

Inside the cave. I am not very comfortable in small spaces so there were many times I wanted to get out of there.

Matt standing in the bottom of a sink hole

Outside the entrance to the cave

Josh Duggars car lot

Our 2nd night was in Hot Springs. Matt and I would never go back there...not impressed. It was such a dirty place and there was not much to do. Most of the springs have green boxes on them to preserve them so there was very little to look at.

Bath House Row (The old bath houses that people used to go and take baths in the hot springs)

Hot Cascading falls

The green boxes that cover the springs

Hot water fountain that people can fill jugs with the hot springs water to take home. We went by here early in the morning on Sunday and there was a rather elderly woman who was filling her glass jugs. She probably had more than 30 jugs to fill and she was working so hard to fill and load them in her car. She must believe it is the only water she can use. Very interesting.

The last night we had a reservation at a hotel about halfway between the springs and Matt's parents. I wanted to stop at Petit Jean State Park on the way. However, once we got there we didn't want to leave! So we cancelled the reservation and rented a cabin on a cliff. It was awesome! Here are some beautiful pictures from the area we stayed in.

Matt pointing to our cabin across the canyon

The hiking trail we took to the falls. It was a 200 foot drop in the first quarter mile of the trail. We got up at 7 to hike this 2 mile trail because of the heat warnings. It was beautiful. The falls were almost non-existent because it was so dry.

We had a fantastic time! Hope we can go on another memorable vacation in 10 more years.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Fun day with family

A couple weeks ago we had an awesome day with some family in Grand Rapids. It is now an annual thing where the boys golf and the girls and kids hang out at the pool. So, Matt spent the day golfing and had a nice time. We had lunch and swam and wore the kids out. We ended the busy day at my step-sisters house for dinner. What a great day!

All the kids with Aunt Allison waiting for lunch to come

Cousin Lucy

Cousin Tyler

Some of the girls after a long day

Monday, August 2, 2010

Week without Riley

Last week Riley was at Papa and Grandma VW's to spend some time with her cousin. While she is gone we always spend time with Carter doing things he enjoys. This year we let him pick out his new pet. We told both kids that they could buy hermit crabs with some of their birthday money so he was able to go and get them last week. He brought home Hendrickson and Pele.

We also took Carter to the beach to fly his new kite. We all had a blast!!!