Tag Archives: Utah

Arches: the Gateway to Patience

I took my kids to Arches National Park.

Here’s how it went in their words:

We hiked Park Avenue (so named because the red rock is as high as sky scrapers on both sides of the path).  It is down hill at the beginning but flattens out quickly.  The hike is .9 miles one way.  We probably did .75 and turned around due to lack of shade.

10 yr old son:  I like this place way better than New York City.  There are too many people there.

8 yr old daughter:  New York City is WAY better.  I hate this place.  There’s too much sun.

We had water.  I may forget lunch for school but I don't forget water in the desert...

We had water. I may forget lunch for school but I don’t forget water in the desert…

We’re almost back to the car:

8 yr old: I’m gonna die of a heart attack.

She sits down on a rock.  I tell her I’m going to take her picture.  She poses.

We hike The Windows.

Me:  This is Turet Arch.

8 yr old:  It should be called Tiring Arch.

We approach a little hill with slick rock.

8 yr old: We’re going there?

   5 yr old son: Look! No hands!

We go to the visitors center to watch the introductory film so everyone can become Jr. Park rangers.

5 yr old: Is this 3D?

We only hiked Park Avenue and The Windows.  We walked around Balancing Rock and then headed back to Moab.  We went to Milt’s for burgers and shakes, swimming at the pool, and a chuckwagon dinner.  The next day we hiked Delicate Arch.  On the way out of town we drove 3 miles to the middle of nowhere to see fossils still in the rocks.  I almost got stuck in sand.

I asked my kids if they liked the trip.

10 yr old:  I liked the arches.

5 yr old:  I liked the dinosaur fossils.

8 yr old: I liked everything.  Except the hiking.

This is not "almost there."

This is not “almost there.”


I played roulette while in Utah.  You may be thinking: but Utah doesn’t allow gambling.  They do.  You just have to know where and the secret password.  And the password is:

The estimate for your car repairs will be…

Sometimes I honestly feel like the mechanic goes in a back room, spins a wheel, and comes out with my car’s diagnosis.  This trip the estimate was $1500.

It’s my own fault.  I shouldn’t have gone in.  I mean, who cares if the car shakes whenever you brake if you are over 40 mph.  Just because you are going to be driving through three states at 80 mph (I mean 75) and the last hour is through canyons, what was I thinking?

I was thinking realignment for $100.  But I didn’t realize my tires are old and won’t pass safety inspection.  And the front lower control arm bushings is leaking and won’t pass safety inspection.

BUT the jokes on them because Montana doesn’t have a safety inspection.

So I just resurfaced the front brake rotors and left.  We’ll worry about the other stuff when the car starts to shake again.

Going South takes less time. Why is that?

Spring Break Conundrum

It’s 11 am on the day after daylight savings and I haven’t showered yet.  I have done the dishes, though and put some laundry away and now I must pause to go change the laundry so it doesn’t mildew.

Ok, I am back.  Mildew has been averted.  (On this load, at least.)

I have actually done a lot this morning.  I turned in an article to the paper, went through old clothes, put some in the trash, some in the laundry, cleaned the boys’ room, and read seventeen blog posts while watching the PBS special on the Troubadour.  I am amazing.  Today.  Tomorrow, I hope to watch seasons 6 and 7 of Beverly Hills while teaching my 3 year old how to feed me grapes and bon-bons.

My thoughts today turn toward that wonderful week in Spring adeptly labeled “Spring Break.”  I am trying to figure out what to do for it.  I have planned, and almost always plan, on spending this week in Utah so my kids get to visit their grandparents and I get to see Juan, the greatest hair stylist on the planet, and this year the plan is to buy a car.  (The selection in town is not to my liking.)

I thought of staying at a hotel one night to use the pool and Utah has fun things like dinosaur museums, amusement parks, and In and Out Burger and Juan.  I usually go and buy the kids summer clothes and see a few friends.

But this year, I don’t wanna.  I want to pack my three children up, drive two hours to Missoula to take the Allegiant Air flight to LA.  Once I get there, I want to rent a car and drive to Carlsbad.  I then want to spend a day at Legoland.  The next morning I want to drive down to San Diego and go to the zoo.  Then I want to go to the other half of the zoo.  Then I want to go swimming and then I will drive three hours back to LA to get on an airplane to then drive two hours back home.

Why, dear readers, do I want to do this?  That sounds HORRIBLE.  I will be alone with my three kids who get on each others nerves for the four hours they are together at the end of school until bed time.  I will get no sleep and my patience will be out the window.  Kevin thinks we should do those things as a FAMILY (meaning he wants to go, but is working.)

But I really want to go to CA because it is the land of milk and honey and dreams and it sounds so nice until I get there and have to drive in the traffic and tell the kids to shut up while I figure out which exit is ours and try and find a hotel and then figure out what to do when one kid wants to swim, one kid is asleep in the back seat and one kid is hungry.

Last time we went to Legoland James found a lizard and then cried for an hour when it ran away. And I want to do it again...

Do you ever have ideas you know won’t work and that you shouldn’t do but you can’t give them up and you will probably do them?