I have so much I want to record from the last week, but I still don't feel recovered from all of the excitement. First of all, I got to spend all of last week at the cabin. It was the longest cabin trip I've had in years. In spite of all of the propane problems and some other drama, it was an amazing week. It is a family cabin that we have had the good fortune to be able to spend many weeks at since we were children. It is one of the most beautiful places in the whole world. With a soothing tiny stream running down the side of the mountain, wonderful sounds and smells and a constant cool breeze. Jay had to work, but I was able to go up Wednesday with Laura. I was a little worried about handling the boys without daddy's help, but it turned out all right. They were happy to play outside with their cousins all day. They both got REALLY dirty. Jayden got muddy playing in the water... while Ethan threw the dirt up in the air. If you look close you can see the pile on his head! The weather was so nice, I loved spending all of my time out there as well.
One of my most memorable moments was a hike I took with Jayden. I was impatient for Jay to arrive on Friday and looking for something to do to get my mind off of it. I decided to take Jayden for a walk up the road toward the top of the mountain. I intended to take him to the first corner where the road curves up, then turn around and come back to the cabin. As we approached that corner Jayden started up the hill with great excitement and said "Come on Mommy!" And how could I resist that sweet little voice? Now, this is no ordinary hill! Our cabin road is fairly treacherous, and no one in their right mind tries to drive on it without a truck or suv. My least favorite part of this road is the final hill that is so steep and long, it feels as if gravity is trying to roll the vehicle down it! Anyway, Jayden started up it as if his feet had wings and cheered me on as I slowly plodded along behind him. We noticed all of the beautiful flowers, and rocks and bugs as we went along and really had a great time. Periodically, I would stop to rest; he sat with me and we talked about all of the amazing things we saw. Each time I would ask him if he wanted to go back to the cabin or keep going up. He would insist we continue on, and before I knew it we were at the rocky dugway which is almost at the top. My sister Laura was heading down the mountain and we took the opportunity to ride in her car for a minute to rest and call Jay to see when he was coming. We were really lucky she came, I hadn't planned for a long hike and had no water. Luckily she had a couple of bottles she sent with us for our hike back down. Sadly, Jayden realized how tired he was during our time in the car and he looked like he wanted to take a nap. He didn't want to get out and start hiking again, he begged me to pick him up, but with a little encouragement, he started off again. We found a butterfly that had died on the middle of the road. It was in perfect condition so we picked him up to carry him home with us. That distracted him from his tiredness for the next half of the walk. He would say "poor butterfly" and keep checking to see if I still had it. He was such a trooper!! He only asked me to carry him a couple of times. When I explained I couldn't, he didn't even cry, he just held my hand and walked beside me. Tears welled up in my eyes as I wished I could carry him and admired him for going on without complaint. He was still only two years old! I was unbelievably tired for the rest of that day, but I didn't regret it for one moment! Those memories are priceless to me! I can't even describe how I felt. His excitement in hiking, his endless enthusiasm for all he saw, made my heart overflow with joy. And those moments while we sat side by side talking about what we saw and listening to every sound were so peaceful. Jayden constantly asks "what's that?" whenever he hears a sound he doesn't know. In the mountain, I got to answer that question a lot, as he heard the birds, and the bugs, and the wind in the trees. Then he would excitedly announce what it was the next time he heard it.
Ethan was so much fun as well. He mostly stayed away from the water, but he loved digging in that soft mountain dirt. After a while he got the courage to climb up the mountain a little, and then he would slide back down on his tummy. His favorite thing had to be the camp songs. He is clearly our music lover. He has, in the past cried at the end of the hymns at church and even objects to the pause between songs on a CD. Well, he was so excited about all of the camp songs and danced along as everyone sang. Jay took an even more adventurous hike with Derek, Madeline, Ryan, Meghan, and Jayden. He had to carry Jayden part of the way as they trekked through some water. He also slipped and fell down a little water fall. Luckily he wasn't hurt! He said they will be taking a different route to the waterfall next year.
We roasted marshmallows. (Jayden felt so triumphant! His first time roasting them himself. He did have a little help from daddy of course.)Mommy and Ethan loved the Marshmallows they made for us! We were all tired, bruised, and DIRTY by Sunday, but had a week full of great talks, memories, and lots of FUN! Can't wait till next year, we are so blessed.