After several hours of yard work yesterday, it suddenly dawned on me that i’m not a gardener. I’m sure it has dawned on most of the neighborhood too. The day started out good enough. I set up some cages for the tomato plants. I set out a trap for the wasps. I even dug some trenches so that the water in the garden would flow down to the end. Then my wife asked me to trim back the bushes in front of the house.When i got the trimmers out, i noticed they wouldn’t trim more than an inch or two. But we needed a foot or more trimmed back. Well … i guess i should have realized the chainsaw probably wasn’t the best solution. It seemed like a good idea at the time. It got the job done – the bushes are trimmed way back now. Unfortunately, they’re also UGLY as #@$. so basically i took about 2 minutes to ruin a 60 year old bush, that might recover in about 5 years. sorry!
On Christmas day when we went down to visit my parents, i received an envelope from them as my Christmas present. It was a ticket for a helicopter ride the following day. Needless to say i was very excited. My brother-in-law Kevin also received a ticket to ride. I was hoping that my brother, who just received his helicopter pilot license about a month ago, could fly us, buthe doesn’t have enough hours to take passengers yet so he was also going to go along as a passenger. On the plus side, we got to go up with Brad’s favorite instructor: Chase.The next morning we were a a little worried because the wind was picking up and it looked as if we might not get to go. Fortunately things worked out and the winds stayed stable enough that although it was a bit bumpy on take-off, it wasn’t so windy that we had to cancel. The flight lasted 30 minutes, which seemed to pass extremely quickly. We flew over the city initially, and then went for a big loop around the surrounding countryside at about 90 knots (That’s just over a hundred miles an hour). We asked Chase if he would fly over my parents house on the way back to the airport so we could get some pictures from the air. Every time a helicopter flies over my moms house she always runs outside and waves, hoping that it’s my brother. Of course this time she was at the airport waiting for us, so nobody came out to wave. Enjoy the pictures!
Here is some video of our flight. My brother and brother-in-law were kind enough to let me have the front seat since they’ve both been in helicopters before. (If you ever get a chance for a helicopter ride, try for the front seat – the view is amazing.)
This past weekend (labor day weekend) we went on a hike up Payson canyon and hiked up to the Grotto trail falls.
I’ve put up some pictures here.
It’s time once again for the annual city festival and Luann managed to
drag everyone out of bed at 6am this morning to go see the hot air
On Saturday (April 16th) our family trekked out to the central Utah
desert in search of rocks. This continues a 3 year tradition
we’ve started with a group of friends and co-workers.
Two years ago we went hunting for Trilobites and had a great
time. The little buggers were literally lying everywhere; you
couldn’t take a step without crunching a fossil! Last year we got
together and dug for geodes. We had a great time and came back
with so many geodes that I still haven’t gone through them all.
This year we went to Topaz Mountain. There were four families who
all rendezvoused in the desert. After we had all arrived, we
caravanned out to the mountain and decided to try our luck.
Fortunately, we had some inside help from a local rockhounder who knows
everything about everything when it comes to rocks in Utah. He
drew us a map of a good place to go, and we went. Unfortunately,
there was some ambiguity in the map he drew and we were unsure of the
spot, so we split up.
The party I went with got out or shovels and rock picks and mesh
screens and went to work digging into the side of the mountain.
After about 40 minutes of fruitless effort, we got a call from the
other group saying “We’ve found it; come on over!”. Turns out we
weren?t the only ones having bad luck at the spot we picked.
There was another group of about 20 people who had been digging for
three hours and hadn?t found a single piece of topaz.
After arriving at the new spot we parked next to a riverbed and had a
picnic. While there, one of us noticed lots of sparks coming from
the sand in the riverbed. Upon closer inspection we discovered it
was tiny pieces of topaz … literally everywhere! That was the
clincher. The kids had tasted blood and they wanted more!
We hiked up to the spot where the other group was and immediately set
to digging. I’d say that I personally found a piece every 10
minutes or so on average. It was a great time, and I think I’d
like to go back now that I know where to go and what to look for.
Thanks all who participated – it was a fun event and I look forward to our trip next year!