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IMPROMPTU PIONEER DAY

July 26, 2016


This weekend was SUCH a good time and memorable on all counts. I don’t know if I’m the only one, but I always say, “I’m never going to forget this, this is hilarious/awesome/too good/so weird/such a good lesson” etc., and theeeeen, I forget.

I guess that’s why journaling is so important, but I’ve never been great at consistently writing. My posterity are either going to think my life was only of note every six to eight months (maybe?) or more likely, that I was a sporadic hot mess. Hopefully I’ll be around long enough for them to figure out it was the second.

There wasn’t anything really crazy significant about the time spent this weekend, but it was just the simple goodness of it that I want to remember. I think time well-spent is just as important as the big “aha!” moments. First, we got to see both of our families – Cody’s at our beautiful niece Julianna’s birthday/BBQ Friday, and mine at a Pioneer Day BBQ Saturday. We ALWAYS love that.

Saturday morning, we rented kayaks – which has been on our summer list forever, but since I drive a tiny Corolla with no rack, we turned to YouTube and got real white-trash by making a pool noodle rack to transport them. It is as ghetto as it sounds, but you can Google it. It totally works and got the job done. However, only 3/10 (I love made-up statistics) would recommend because, have you ever taken a pool noodle and blown water out of it, and enjoyed the horn sound at a pool party? Yeah. SUPER fun. Less fun when it’s the wind zipping through the pool noodles under two enormous kayaks at 60 mph atop your tiny car on a steep mountain road.

The air buzzed/vibrated and made us sound like we were driving some kind of souped-up vehicle or motorcycle. Like we were the car version of being seven and putting a baseball card in the wheel of your bike to make it sound COOL. Except, we didn’t feel cool. For about an hour drive up to Causey, we looked AND FELT, like this:


works, BUT AT WHAT COST?!

But for real, it such a beautiful day up at Causey. The water was gorgeous and the sky was this photoshop-worthy brilliant blue, and we floated and explored to our hearts content. Highlights included wheat thins, ice water, laughs, cliff-jumping, overheard drunken conversations from our canoe neighbors (“How many beers have you HAD?” “Twelve.” “Twelve?!” “Yeah, but they were Utah beers, so that’s like three.” As a non-drinker, I have to wonder, is that like dog-years vs. human years? What’s the translation there?), and extremely splotchy leg sunburns. We officially can’t use spray sunscreen. It was a happy, happy memory.

Yesterday, after church, we had planned on a little camping trip to Calf Creek Falls to enjoy the Monday off from school/work and to honor the pioneers by sleeping on the ground. I mean. We went to Cody’s mission president’s homecoming, then our branch, but I still had more homework to submit online for a summer class discussion so we couldn’t head out just yet. Welllll, that lovely little class discussion took longer than anticipated and by the time everything was squared away, we knew we didn’t have the time to make it clear down to our planned campsite in Escalante. After some Googling, we regrouped and decided to try Kanarraville Falls this weekend.

2010 General Conference was our soundtrack driving down, and from crying like babies over the talks, to racing the sun to find a campsite, to ending up at an RV & Campground in Kanarraville after dark, hosted by a man with a woman’s name, it was wild from start to finish. He and his life partner/business partner/brother? (relationships were v unclear, but everyone was just lovely) had an RV with a picket fence around it, a fairy garden with colored garden lights, and a little poodle with a pink bejeweled collar. It was awesome.

We overheard him talking to a lady after Quiet Times (10pm sharp) about how he does yoga for 45 minutes a day, and has figured out how to meditate in the state between waking and dreaming. I can’t make this up, and I wanted SO much more time to talk to him. We also met the most wild woman working at the gas station, and bless her heart, she was a hoot, too. We can’t stop laughing or quoting them.

After a night of half-sleep and mostly laughter (we haven’t mastered the art of meditation quite like our host) we woke up and changed for the hike, ate our breakfast PB&Js, packed up, and set off. IT WAS INCREDIBLE. Just wonderful the whole way. You need to go if you haven’t. And if you have, why not go again?

Pride just welled up in me – so much love for my husband, this beautiful state, and also for my pioneer ancestors, who trekked this place without water gear/exercise clothing, outdoor sandals, ice water, protein bars, sunscreen, or anything. I have nothing to compare that to, but I’m so grateful for their stalwart examples and perserverance. I’ve never even gotten to do trek, so many of my thoughts were wondering what that original journey of faith was like for them. (I also wondered WHY lizards are so cute, but then so hard to catch. Riddle me this.)

All in all, it was MAGIC. We are home again, and I can’t stop smiling about our Pioneer Day adventure. Words don’t do it justice, so we made a little home video to remember. Watch it, if you want.

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