Sunday, March 23, 2008

Jolly Old England

Howdy folks. This is Marc "guestblogger" and first time blogger, long time reader. Sarah requsted that I post the highlights of my trip to the English Lake District over spring break.
It was a great time. I loved England though it's super expensive. Take American prices and double them and you've pretty much got England.

The big drama of the trip was that Delta Airlines lost my backpack (or "rucksack" in the Queen's Englis) for four days. The person at the counter when I was checking in mistakenly put the luggage tag for the girl next to me in line on my bag. So my backpack ended up in Moline, IL. I had my camera and credit cards on me and I was already wearing hiking clothes so I just did without for a few days. I can now say that I have been an ultra-ultra light hiker.

The English have a great way of hiking- I think you could call it civilized. They take short hikes between hostels so that they can have hot meals at the beginning and end of the day as well as warm, dry accomodations. They really know how to rough it!

We hiked about sixty miles total cross country. Sheep were everywhere. They're kind of like weeds- you stop noticing them after a while.

On day two I invested $20 on my own map and waterproof map case. After following other people with maps and getting lost with them on day one I had had it. England taught me to truly appreciate the navigation skills I acquired as a boy scout. Though the English Ordinance Survey maps are so good that you don't need much skills-wise to follow them.

Highlights: I saw the ruins (foundation mostly) of a Roman Fort from about 1800 years ago. That was very cool. I also saw a stone circle from about 1000 bc. That was amazing. I bet I have blood in my veins from people who gathered there.

I visited a church in one town but left after I found out it was only built in the 1800's. That would be a historic church if it were in the states but not in England. I wouldn't look at anything that wasn't at least 400 years old.

Here are some choice pictures from the trip.

T.K. MAXX?



We saw thousands of miles of stone walls. I was in awe at the millions of man hours it must have required to build them. This one has been modified to allow "holiday ramblers" to cross it.


The famous "bridge house" Legend has it that a family with six children once lived here in the 1600's.


The old Cathedral in Manchester.


A very old pub in Manchester where I had dinner. It amazingly survived the bombing by the Luftwaffe in WWII. I think it dates to the 1600's.

February 29-March 10, 2008


Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Answer

When I tell Joseph to do something, he has started spitting in my face. Yikes! This kind of defiance at two? Anyway, I have tried "time-out" to no avail. All I have to show for my time-out efforts is a stained corner in my dining room where Joseph presses his drooly face against the wall. My older brother Dan suggested soap in the mouth. I used Dawn dish soap. It worked!!! I had to do it twice--two days in a row. Now, Joseph will be the first to tell you that spitting is "yucky" (just like the soap). After such a success, I was ready to start putting a drop of Dawn on his tongue for all the other disclipline issues I can't seem to master. My mom suggested I not over use it (and lose its power). Good point, Grandma. There are lots of battles ahead. . . .

Wagon Ride

Joseph loved helping Grandpa bring wood to the house. Almost every evening when Grandpa got home from work, they started a fire. Joseph often got a wagon ride out of it, too.

March 15, 2008

New Trucks

Grandma and Grandpa's piano makes a great road for Joseph's new trucks

Friday, March 14, 2008

Marc's Trip to England

Over spring break, Marc went with a group of students to the Lake District of England for a special class. They hiked and explored this beautiful area. Here are a few pictures, and there will be lots more details and stories to come in later posts...








Tuesday, March 04, 2008

SNOW!


We had a big snow storm today. Luckily, Aunt Meridith braved the snow so Joseph's cousins could still come celebrate with him.

Happy Birthday Joseph!

Joseph had a great birthday--a party with his cousins, Grace and Ally. Grandma got him cake toppers of a dump truck, cement truck and scoop truck. As soon as Joseph saw the cake, he immediately took off the dump truck. I tried to replace it on the cake, but Joseph really cried. I figured it was his birthday so we took off the trucks and let them play. We did the activity (play dough), the cake, the presents in random order. Grandma said it was a "child directed" birthday party. I think everyone had a fun time. He loved having us sing to him. He blew out both of the candles. He got a little chuckle out of himself.

When you ask Joseph how old he is, he responds "Two."


Grandma made her famous playdough and we played and played.



Ally, Joseph and Grace...


Joseph opening his Black and Decker tool set from Great Aunt Elizabeth and Great Uncle Bob.


Joseph loves to wear the hard hat!

March 4, 2008

Sunday Scandals

Joseph looks like a little angel in this picture, right? Quietly reading his book after church?
Well, nothing could be further from the truth. Sacrament meeting is the longest hour and fifteen minutes of the week. Joseph seems incapable of remaining quiet and not running for that amount of time. On Sunday, we had four adults--Grandma, Grandpa, Hannah and me--and we still couldn't control this kid! I had a present (the above pictured book) in my bag from Christmas that I was saving for his birthday. I ended up letting him open it in church to try to occupy him. It did not stop the noise! He repeats the words he hears the speaker saying---so we have outburst of "GOSPEL" and such. Then, another little boy across the chapel started saying "NO" to his parents really loudly. Well, Joseph decided to respond. The two kept going back and forth, shouting "NO" despite my attempts to distract, cover his mouth--and finally drag him from the room. Everyone else seemed to get a real kick out of it. All these people in my parents' ward came up and commented on it. One lady described it as a game of Marco-Polo in the chapel. That about sums it up!
But, at least he loves nursery and that is the majority of the 3 hour block.
March 2, 2008

Visiting Missouri

Joseph and I are having a fun time in Missouri. Marc is in England having lots of adventure (including having his bag lost and trying to do a hiking trip without gear), and we'll post pictures and stories when he gets home. It has been snowy, snowy, snowy since we got here. But last weekend we had two really warm days (Sunday was almost 80 degrees!!) and Joseph went to the park. Thanks Grandpa and Hannah!!
March 1, 2008