12 August 2019

2019's Third Summer Trip - Jackson Hole

At the end of June my brother's kids attended a couple of sports camps at BYU. My sister-in-law came to get them at the end of their camps and took Ike and Felix back to Jackson Hole with her.

The boys had a blast with their uncle, aunt, and two cousins. They went on lots of hikes and were generally spoiled.

They did the touristy things like Moulton Barn and the shootout (or shoe-out, as one of them kept mistakenly calling it. They didn't know what a shoot-out was, so apparently they were kind of concerned when some cowboys started "shooting" at each other).

They saw a moose, but Uncle John wouldn't let them pet it because, "Wyoming is not a petting zoo."

They did some hikes and some swimming, and Felix did a lot of whining about those hikes: 

Felix, also, apparently, was quite the food critic. This was his face after eating a jalapeno at a Mexican restaurant:

As a parent, I am very concerned about my kids being picky eaters. I know not all parents value a kid who can eat, but I definitely do. So I really don't cater to picky eaters. You eat what we're having for dinner, or you probably don't get to eat. I'm not a short order chef, and you need to learn to eat a variety of foods. I also don't believe in "kid foods" and basically only buy them when Eric is out of town and I need my meal prep to be as easy as possible. (The first time I bought chicken nuggets, Ike was 6.)

With that background established, here were a few things that Felix, the apparent food snob, said to his food-providers:

  • When served pasta with sauce from a jar: You should make homemade pasta sauce. That's what my mom does. (Please note that this is a lie. I do not do that.)
  • When served Mexican food with shredded cheese as a garnish: Is this cheese the kind that you grated at home? Or was it already grated before you bought it? (Answer, it was purchased already shredded.) Felix then shared his opinion (which he got from me) that cheese is best if shredded freshly so it doesn't have the weird powder on it. (He has since that time informed me that he didn't even notice the weird powder.)
  • Catering to his non-pre-shredded preferences, there was an evening where they were grating cheese at home, and Felix insisted on being the one to VERY SLOWLY grate the cheese, all while whining and complaining about how long it was taking for dinner to be cooked and how starving he was.
  • When served a ham sandwich with American cheese: AMERICAN CHEESE? YOU'VE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME. I HATE AMERICAN CHEESE.
So, you know, on the one hand I've got this kid who ate bites of onion and garlic and ginger as a two-year-old while I prepped dinner. And it was awesome and magical. And on the other hand, now he is six and has really strong opinions about the quality of his food and the ingredients that go in. I guess I've created a monster.

On July 3, Eric and I drove up with the girls to spend a couple of days in Jackson Hole and to pick the boys up. John and I ran a 10K on the 4th. I had been training for it, but I hadn't quite run the full 6.2 miles until the very day of the race. I ran the whole thing, minus about 20 feet at the turnaround point. One lady ran in front of me and then would walk for a while. Then when I'd catch up to her again, she'd take off again until I caught up with her again.

After the race we went to the town's parade, which was fine. My family gave me an endlessly hard time about the fact that it was Trixie and Felicia's first parade. But y'all, I hate parades. I obviously live in the wrong state.

Then Eric convinced John to watch our kids "for an hour" while we went and canoed the Snake River. It was longer than an hour. The water was high and fast, which we knew before we got there. When we pulled up to unload our canoe, Teton County Search and Rescue told us to be on the lookout for a body (not a missing man, but a missing body, very reassuring). We took on some big rapids and also took on a lot of water. Our boat was very full and very precarious as we navigated through an endless run of whirlpools. Eric is basically a canoeing pro, which is the only reason we did not tip. Eventually we found a place where we could pull the boat ashore and dump it out. It was then that Eric realized his phone was inside his Ziplock bag, but the bag was not zipped up. Ask me about the other time Eric ruined a phone on a trip to Jackson. (I'm going to assume you asked - he left his phone on top of the car, and we drove off with it on the roof of the car and then eventually found it smashed on the highway. This is why Eric cannot have nice phones.)

That night we watched fireworks until they were over, and then the rain started pouring, and we had a bit of a walk to get back to Nicole's parents' house. But nobody melted.

The next day we went to Bear World. Y'all, I have an unreasonable love for that place. I can't really explain it, I just love it. It's super touristy and cheesy, and I do not care. You get to see bears and other animals pretty close, and there are little roller coasters and kiddie rides that are perfect for my size of family.

The train is kind of pointless, but Felicia liked it:

The little roller coaster is the best, and Trixie was even big enough to ride it. It was definitely my favorite.

While we rode the roller coaster over and over, Felicia rode the little cars over and over. She loved them, despite her neutral face.

Eric also really liked them:
(Why didn't Eric ride with Felicia? Because then they would have exceeded the weight limit. You can imagine how amused I was to get off our ride and see my husband riding in a little kid car all by himself.)

Along with my unreasonable love of Bear World, I have an unreasonable love of these little photo boards. On my work computer I have a collection of my favorite photos that are used as my desktop background, and about 10 of them are photos of people whom I've forced to put their heads in the head-holes of various photo boards. Anyway, here are our four bears in 2019. Obviously we can't have any more kids since we've maxed out the head-holes of the photo board at Bear World.

And for the sake of memories, here they were in 2016:

We've done more things this summer, and I totally lost track of time. It wasn't until writing this post that I realized I'd never written about Felicia's birthday, which was over a month ago.

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