Tag Archives: camping

Family Camping 90’s Style

Have I mentioned how much I love my family?  I mean yes, we’re dysfunctional as shit, but we are also insanely awesome.  It’s like we’re hilarious and amazing on our own and then you put us all together and it’s like what just happened?  And I start wondering if maybe, just maybe, we are some of the funniest people that ever lived. It’s possible.

Anyway, now that we’ve established just how incredible we all are, let’s talk about our most recent outing.  It was a quick trip to the HOA (Hendrickson Outdoor Adventure, named after my sister and her husband that own the property – the Hendricksons) but we still managed to jam it with lots of good memories…. 90’s style!

My bro, Spencer, came up with the 90’s idea.  Acting as if we didn’t own cell phones and only listening to music that was 90’s or pre-90’s sounded like the perfect way to spend the weekend.  Sometimes you just need to unplug.  Plus, my mom was kicking it super old school hiking around with her Sony Walkman.  That’s right, Walkman, as in she was listening to a tape!  Pink Floyd to be specific.  How cool is that?!  Oh, also, the Walkman was being carried around in some sort of fanny pack. Bam!

In addition to the 90’s theme, there was also a redneck theme going on as well. That means ATV rides, shooting guns and blowing shit up.  To be clear, people were shooting guns at things to blow them up.  It was loud and Captain Redneck (my brother-in-law Heath) was beaming from ear to ear.  Spence even got into the spirit of things with a full-on redneck accent.  And he shot a gun!

Now ATV riding is not necessarily a redneck thing, but it can be, so I say it is.  And you know what?  The group ATV rides are so fun.  Everyone was riding with someone else except my mom who drove her own because 1) she’s too nervous to let someone else drive and 2) it gives her the ability to tell us over and over again that she doesn’t want us waiting for her and that she likes to go slow.  We waited anyway.  After a section that was a little rocky we had all been hanging out for a few minutes trying to dry our butt sweat when she pulled up and yelled, “Fuck this! Could you have picked a worse road, Heath?”  Honestly, he totally could have picked a worse road but I for one am very happy that she thought it sucked so much.  If she hadn’t, we wouldn’t have had something to laugh our assess off at that particular moment.

At some point on the way back she took a wrong turn and we were ready for the comments about how we left her when she returned but nope.  She drove in cackling like a witch instead.  She is full of surprises!

I’m hoping for round two in September.  In the meantime, here are some pics to hold you over.  Unfortunately I have no pics of the man that made it all possible. I’m sure you’re disappointed, Heath.

My nephew, Dylan "crashing" on the ATV.  Don't worry, I went along with it.

My nephew, Dylan “crashing” on the ATV. Don’t worry, I went along with it.

Mom of the Year and the one and only Stevie.

Mom of the Year and the one and only Stevie.

My favorite shot.  Love you brother!

My favorite shot. Love you brother!

Spence, Mom and me.  Notice the fannypack.

Spence, Mom and me. Notice the fannypack.

My stepdaughter Emily and her boyfriend Taylor.

My stepdaughter Emily and her boyfriend Taylor.

Ummm can you say bad ass?

Ummm can you say bad ass?

A Long Weekend in the Woods

Sometimes you just need a long weekend away getting your camp on.  Or, if you’re my husband, you think you need to go camping every weekend.  He’s weird though, so we’re not taking his opinion into account.  Anyway, we camped over Memorial weekend, like we always do and it was a great little escape.

Eating delicious food (and way too much of it), going for long hikes, riding bikes around the campground and playing games together are all the things I love about camping.  Plus, you have a great excuse for not taking a shower.  Not that I like to go for long periods of time without a shower, but sometimes a shower just gets in the way of all the things going on in a day, so.  Yeah.

Of course there are downsides to camping.  For one, there’s the whole bathroom situation.  We have a small tent trailer, that has a bathroom in it, but when there are three of us staying in it, it’s a better idea to just use the campground bathrooms. You know, the ones with doors.  Doors that lock, by the way, Mr. Taking a Poop Without Locking the Door!  Yeah, there’s a story here.

On the last day I walked over to the bathroom and opened the door to a man sitting on the toilet.  Yep.  It scared the shit out of me.  Not literally, but I jumped about 10 feet in the air as he sat there acting as casual as can be.  He honestly waved this slow, casual wave and then said (also very slowly, I might add), “Yeah, doesn’t lock.” Which, by the way, is entirely untrue.  I had been locking the thing for three days! And also, if it really doesn’t lock, how about putting a sign on the door or something before sitting down to take a crap?  You ever think of that dude?!  No, because he obviously could care less, as noted by the casual wave.

Other than the drop in, the camping weekend was a success and fun was had by all. I can prove it with these pictures.

The Travel Log

Hi there!  Remember me?  I’m back to give you an update on all things Sonie. Why? Because it might be somewhat entertaining, and everyone loves to be entertained.

First, let me start by saying that my anxiety level has definitely decreased.  For one, I’m trying to imagine the worst thing that could happen in my anxiety-ridden state, and most of the time, it’s not that bad.  Since most of my anxiety involves Jack and his unpredictability, the worst-case scenario is he takes a little bite at someone.  Is this good?  No, but he’s never done much damage.  Plus, it’s been over 4 months since we’ve had an incident!  Many people have come to the house and he’s been nice to everyone.  And camping this weekend he hauled ass towards one guy walking by the campsite only to sniff him and get some attention.  Do I want him charging towards people?  No, but we’re working on it.  Oh, and he was a freakin’ rockstar hiking off-leash.  Yes, he chased the cows (which, by the way, cows can move a lot quicker than I thought), but he did come back.

Now that we have the Jack update out of the way, let’s talk about work anxiety. Actually, I don’t have much work anxiety.  Is traveling to Switzerland to deliver a 2-day training course to big wig pharmaceutical folks intimidating?  Hell yeah.  Am I capable of pulling it off?  Absolutely.  And I did.  I spent 3 days in Basel, Switzerland on very little sleep, but I pulled it off.  After taking three planes, one train and one taxi, I arrived.  The hotel was very nice (should be when it’s over $300/night), but what is it with the Europeans pushing two twin beds together and calling it a queen? It’s cheating is what it is.  Also, when I order a coffee, fill it up.  I don’t want to pay for a cup of coffee that is a quarter full.  I’m going on three hours of sleep!

What a whiner I am.  The people there were so nice.  In fact, on the train back from Basel to Zurich, the ticket dudes totally let my fellow training friend off the hook when her ticket wasn’t valid.  They even blew kisses to us when we got off the train. Now that’s nice!  I’m telling you though, trains CANNOT be trusted.  I can’t tell you how many wrong trains I’ve been on (did it this trip, in fact).  Would it be too much to ask to make an announcement?

Obviously we made it, but it was much more difficult than it needed to be.  The last thing you want is a bunch of angry Americans arriving at the airport only to discover that they can buy a Swiss army knife right before boarding their plane!  So in case security confiscated yours, you can still purchase one so you can stab all your fellow passengers.  Ok, maybe they make you ship it to yourself?

I’m always stoked to get home.  Part of it could be the whole not sleeping for 20 hours thing that really makes me want to crawl into my own bed.  I also knew I had a long weekend with my boys to look forward to though.  Rob was able to take a couple of days off and the three of us took the trailer out for (probably) our final camping trip for the season.  It was gorgeous with the fall leaves and we basically had the campground to ourselves.  Two different families attempted to take the spot next to us, but Rob death stared down the first group and cranked up the music and danced for the second.  Both attempts worked and they moved.

A view of the Rhine River

The boys on a hike in Mt. Nebo

Summer Love

I adore summer.  I know that it’s not even officially summer yet, but kids are out of school, camping is in full swing and I’ve had the opportunity to smell the wonderful scent of sunblock a lot lately.  So, it’s summer.

I am so much happier during the summer months.  Just being able to eat dinner outside on our deck every night makes me smile.  The days are longer, the mornings are brighter and I never have to warm up my corn bag in the microwave (okay maybe once last week, but we had a weird cold spell).

Plus, check out this view from the front of our house.  Hello!

Holy gorgeous, right?!










We can hike all we want.

Em, me and Rob hiking Neff’s Canyon.











And we can take our little Jack man camping.  Look at that peanut head!

Dad, Jack and Mom camping Memorial weekend.











What’s not to love?  Now get outside and soak up the sun for hell sakes!

Camping Rehab

We took Jack on his first camping trip to Zions for Memorial weekend.  We took him for a few reasons: 1) We didn’t really have a dog sitter available, 2) We needed to find out if he liked camping (we are a camping family) and 3) We thought it would be a lot of socialization/rehab for him.  And guess what?!  It turns out he loves camping and he is making HUGE steps in his rehabilitation.

Rob knew that this camping trip would require a lot of him.  I’m just far too nervous with the whole biting issue, and I know Jack senses that when he’s meeting someone for the first time.  So, Rob did all the introductions (which means lots of treats for Jack).  And other than some snapping at our nephew, Dylan (getting used to kids is going to be awhile) and then a weird incident with our brother-in-law, Heath, he was a rockstar!  He was off the leash a ton and the majority of the time came right back when he was called (he also looked at us and kept going the other way a few times to be a shit).  No, he’s not done with his rehab, but he is so on his way.

Once I know that Jack is calm and OK around someone, then I am too.  I am so grateful for Rob and his calm nature.  Perhaps with a prescription of Xanax I could be mellow as well.  I’m just the worried mom though, and I’m learning alongside Jack to take a deep breath and relax.  Just look how chill the guy is here.

Jack chillin’ in the trailer

Living up to the Stereotype

Last night Rob and I went to a class at REI about bike touring.  We’ve always wanted to do some sort of tour on our bikes.  For me, I envision a tour where we ride from campground (or motel if we really want some luxury) to campground where we can shower each night.  Listen, I’ve done backpacking trips that last a week without a shower, but it’s different when you’re dealing with serious butt sweat from sitting on a bike all day long. It’s no joke.  The presenter repeated several times that you need to “take care of your butt.”

Anyway, as we were sitting in the class I realized that almost every person in the room was wearing Tevas.  And I was like, holy shit, these people are so living up to the REI stereotype.  You know the one; doesn’t give a shit about their toenails, wouldn’t dream of wearing makeup, owns at least two pairs of TEVAS, gets noticeably angry when talking about RV’s ruining all the campgrounds.  And speaking of toenails, one dude had at least three black ones.  I didn’t want to look at them and yet I had to keep stealing a glance, each time feeling more and more queasy. As I looked around the room, I almost felt guilty for being an REI member and not owning a pair of this REI shopper staple.  I did the whole Birkenstock thing though and I still have nightmares about it.

Something’s Gotta Give

Have you ever seen this movie… “Something’s Gotta Give?”  If you haven’t, see it simply to drool over the beach house in it.  Seriously people, it really is beautiful and something I dream about owning on a daily basis.

That movie is totally not what this blog is about, however.  It just happens to have the same title.  Something does have to give in my life though.  And… I’m pretty sure I know what it is.  I’m just not quite ready to make the leap.  I know that everyone is busy, but I honestly feel like I could be working in some way every waking moment of the day and would still not be able to get it all done.  I feel as if my life requires every minute to be scheduled.  Like I’m saying, “Ok, I have exactly 1 hour to have fun.”  I most certainly don’t have time to wait in line at the drive thru at Chick-Fil-A.  Do you know how many people in Utah will wait in line though? I was driving past the other day at lunch and there were a crazy amount of cars lined up and I thought to myself, dude, people must really dig Chick-Fil-A.

Sorry, tangent.  I just find it fascinating how many people like that place.  I have managed some small getaways the last couple of weekends.  Yes, “scheduled” fun. Rob and I spent a night last weekend in Heber and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. We went on the coolest bike ride down farm roads with zero traffic and super cute animals.  I swear the air is fresher up there.  Not that it’s hard to find fresher air that what currently lingers over Salt Lake City.  Have you noticed the signs on the freeway warning of the bad air quality?  On Monday it would say, “Bad air quality Monday and Tuesday.  Drive less.”  Then, on Tuesday they would change it to “Bad air quality Tuesday and Wednesday…” etc., etc.  Finally, they must have been like fuck it, let’s just change it to “today.” Which is what it’s been ever since.

This past weekend was a camping trip at the HOA.  Remember the HOA?  That place is like a community on top of a mountain, which is very cool.  My mornings usually start with my adorable, yet rotten niece screaming at the top of her lungs, “Aunt Sooooonie!  Wake up!”  This is generally around 5:00am.  The day can end any number of ways.  Sometimes with handstands.  Sometimes with inappropriate comments around the fire.  This time it ended with men trying to climb a ladder, a ladder they were holding with their own two hands.  And one of them was like, “If you fall, it’s not like you’re falling that far.”  Uhhh right, except if you fall you also have a 10 foot ladder faling with you… possibly on you.

So, that’s where I’m at.  Stay tuned for some announcements hopefully in the near future.  If nothing else, I’ll check back in with some random thoughts.