Monday, July 7, 2014

Philmont, Days 1-3

We have looking forward to this day for months!  The last and biggest of our travel adventures over the past month.  We are off to Philmont.  Philmont is a Boy Scout facility, where they host over 22,000 Scouts every year for high adventure activities.  Through the Philmont Training Center, they also host over 5,000 adult leaders and their families.  For 2 weeks in the summer, they do LDS Week, where the training is supported by the Philmont staff and run by the YM General Presidency and the General Scout Committee.  Stake Presidencies and their families are invited to attend, with the possibility of going every 3 years.

We started our drive at 6 a.m. on the 4th of July.  Luckily, the girls are young enough that they didn't realize that we were kind of skipping a major holiday.  We did talk about it a little.  It is Tayler's favorite holiday, so we made sure to take a picture a send some love to her.

Lynnie wanted to take some pictures for her birth parents as well, and she proudly showed off all of the stuffed animals she brought.

We had an absolutely gorgeous drive through the Colorado mountains, and the girls were dream travelers.

We stopped that night in Alamosa, which is close to where {R} grew up.  Her mom and sister came to our hotel and visited for a couple of hours. It was such a blast to see Grandma again and be able to meet Auntie M.  We are so grateful that -- not only did they make time for us -- they came to our hotel room, and brought presents!  Grandma brought some clothes for Cece and Hello Kitty purses for Ellie and Lynnie, and Auntie M brought delicious cookies and snacks for the drive.

The next morning we slept in and had a leisurely morning, including breakfast in bed.  We only had a few more hours to travel, and check-in was between 2-4 p.m.

Ellie and Lynnie loved playing with the blow dryer and fixing their hair just so.

Then it was back in the truck to complete our 13 hour drive.  Cece loved this toy.  It kept her entertained for hours.

Ellie was taking full advantage of her unlimited access to the iPad.  Lynnie drew some pictures, played on the phone and iPad a little, but mostly looked out the window.  And she sang.  At one point during the drive, when Ellie and Cece were sleeping, Lynnie sang Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star at least 200 times.

I drove a for a few hours on Friday, but was very glad that Greg was driving through the windy mountains.  Especially when we ran into an amazing summer storm.  The wipers could barely keep up, it was raining so hard.

When we pulled up to the LDS Priesthood Leadership Conference,  we were greeted by President Beck, the YM General President, and Sister Wixom, the Primary General President.  We got checked in, got our tent assignments, and started unloading the truck.  The Kecks and Bunnells had arrived before us, and with their help we were unloaded and unpacked in no time.  I shared a tent with Lynnie and Cece.

Greg shared a tent with Ellie, right next door.  Ellie said we were neighbors.  We had an awesome location, literally across from the bathrooms.  That was a lifesaver for me with Lynnie's middle of the night potty runs.

Ellie had fun organizing all of her treasures.

During the opening program that night, President Beck had helpers give each of us a mini-flashlight, and introduced the theme that we need to Arise and Shine Forth.

Tracy Bunnell was so kind to Ellie, keeping her entertained throughout the program.  Tracy even let her take about 30 super flattering pictures at close range.  I loved them all!

Greg took on Cece and spent most of the program walking and rocking her in the back.

Sometimes it just strikes me that these girls are growing up so quickly, and they are totally kids now.  No more babies!  It catches me by surprise that they are not 1 and 2 anymore.  They had fun after the program while we were chatting, just climbing on the wall and dancing around.

I received a letter about a month ago, extending the call of being the choir accompanist at Philmont.  I was excited, and it had many blessings.  Choir practice was every morning at 6:30 a.m. (except Tuesday), so I got to gallivant off to choir while Greg got all three girls up, dressed, and ready for breakfast at 7:30.  We had a large turn-out at the first practice, and it was wonderful to sing in Sacrament Meeting.  Lynnie had a nice nap in Cece's car seat for the whole meeting (Sacrament was last).  Greg took Cece with him to Priesthood and Sunday School, and I stayed with Lynnie in Sunbeams.  They had Primary on the Greensward, and it was great to be outside in the sunshine.  Ellie did great with her class, and Lynnie warmed up after a while.

After church and lunch, we had the rest of the day for Family Time.  It was pretty toasty in our tents, but the Greensward is packed with trees and full of shade.  We spent some time playing games with the Schofields, including Ellie's first time playing Charades.  She was a natural.

After games, we headed over and helped the girls make their costumes for the Children's Parade that was on Wednesday.  There was a nice-sized room full of all sorts of art supplies.  Lynnie was very excited to make a mosquito costume.  Greg made her the stinger, and she was super stoked about that.

Lynnie spent a lot of time during our week riding on the stroller like this.  She would walk for a while, and then invariably say, "I'm really tired from walking" in such a pathetic little voice.  It was great for her to ride, and we always stopped and let her on.  It was just funny to me how the voice never changed the whole week.

Where's Lynlee?  I see you!

Monday had the longest meetings for Greg, and was the girls first time going to their class.  They were all in the Small Fry building (children from 2 months - 4 years old).  It was good for me to know they were all in the same room.  We had class time from 8:30-11:30 and then again from 1:30-4:30 (every other day went to 3:30 in the afternoon).  During the two hour break for lunch, our group congregated in the shade from the bathrooms.  Kami has the magic touch and got Cece to take a great nap.

Lynnie, Connor, Pierce, and Dayton played a great game of hide and seek.  Kami, Maleah, Ellie, and Kennedy hung out in Ellie's tent (even though it was so hot in there -- they didn't care!).

Lynnie dug in the dirt a lot, too.

I enjoyed my day of crafts and bonding with Melissa, Tracy, and Kendra.  In the afternoon, we painted ceramics and then hung out for a couple of hours getting to know each other.  I got pretty antsy towards the end and just wanted to pick up my babies.  I finally went and got them about half an hour early.  They were having so much fun, they didn't want to leave!  We ended up being some of the last ones to leave, after the scheduled pick up time.  Ellie and Lynnie showed me all of the fabulous things they got to play on at the playground.

The Program Bowl and PTC Wagon are behind the Small Fry Center.

You always have someone to play with when Puppy Elizabeth is your best friend.

After dinner we had fun going to the Family Home Evening Program.  Greg once again took Cece on a walk around the Program Bowl, and Lynnie hung out with them for most of it.  She loved singing The Wise Man and the Foolish Man.

Ellie loved making silly faces!

1 comment:

Magson said...

Sounds like fun adventures!

When you said "We stopped that night in Alamosa, which is close to where {R} grew up." you forgot to add in the "and where my brother served the final 5 months of his mission." :-P I really enjoyed that town. In the summer anyway. I'm sure the winter would have been brutal.

And your sister-in-law Teri worked as a camp counselor at Philmont for 2 summers too. You'll have to compare notes about the place.....


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