May 18 – 21
Zack and Kelsea flew to Oklahoma for a Family Readiness Conference this weekend while the rest of us kept the home fires burning.
Kelsea is the Family Readiness Group Leader for Zack’s unit and he is her liaison. Michael and I had the same responsibilities at a couple of his units…it’s rewarding but can be a lot of work. These weekends are choke full of training but also serve as a nice little getaway as they’re always in a nice hotel with great meals and sometimes, if you’re lucky, you might get a chance to do a little sight-seeing.
Papaw and I picked Paityn and Cameron up from school on Thursday and headed north to Smith and Edwards…one of our favorite places in the area…they have a little of everything. We strolled the aisles, finding this and that to add to our cart and then ended our trip in the ‘candy aisle’.
After checking out we headed over to Pizza Pie Cafe (the kids favorite!) for dinner. We filled up on salad, pizza, pasta and dessert pizza before we made one last stop at Walmart for a couple of items and then finally home where we settled in for the night.
Saturday was soccer day so the four of us were in the car and on the road about 9:30 to make it to the soccer field by 10:00. Paityn’s team practices from 10:00 to 10:30 and then starts playing at 10:30, with 4 5 minute quarters.
With just 3 girls on a team during the game they sure get their exercise and we were lucky enough to watch Paityn make a goal this week. It was the last game until the fall and Paityn was happy about that…I’m thinking she’s looking forward to sleeping in on Saturdays.
When we got home we packed a picnic lunch and walked (the kids rod their bikes) over to a park just around the block. The kids ate and then played on the playground equipment or rode their bikes while Nana and Papaw enjoyed some relaxation.
Sunday was another busy day as we hit the road about 9:00 am for the nearly hour drive to the Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City. It rained a bit on the way there (I’d checked the weather earlier and it showed a little rain early in the morning) and sprinkled as we arrived so we thought we’d be ok. But…for roughly the first 1.5 hours we were there it was pretty cruddy and even rained fairly hard at one time. We tried to visit the animals inside the buildings (not many of those though) or at least stay under shelter while viewing the outdoor animals.
Fortunately, it eventually stopped raining and we enjoyed a picnic lunch at an outdoor table and then continued on to visit the outdoor animals. The Harbor Seal was a big favorite as were the giraffes, rhinos and elephants.
The kids wanted to ride the carousel so Papaw got them tickets and they decided they wanted to ride on the wolf (Paityn) and the elephant (Cam) but since we were in a long line we weren’t sure if the animals they wanted would still be available by the time it was their turn to get on.
Thankfully, Paityn’s wolf was still available but it didn’t matter if Cam’s elephant was or not…he decided he was NOT getting on. After some not so subtle encouragement from Papaw they got on and got seated on a bench where Cam got a big bear hug from Papaw to help him stay still. He was not happy.
However…Paityn loved the ride and loved going up (and being taller than Nana) and coming back down. When it was time to get off the ride Papaw now had to subtly encourage Cameron to get off the ride…as now he didn’t want to get off!
We had a good time but weren’t impressed with the $60 that it cost the four of us to be admitted. It’s a nice zoo but not particularly large. It’s probably a bit larger than the Vilas Zoo in Madison, Wisconsin, which is free, but really not worth what we paid to get in. Oh well…we had fun and that’s what we were after.
Leaving the zoo, Papaw decided he wanted to go for a drive…a drive that took us east over Mt. Aire, north to I-84 and then west back through the Weber Pass (that’s what I’m calling it anyway!) and back into Ogden.
A pretty drive to be sure…but quite a way out of the way. Although it did give Cameron and chance to nap for almost two hours…which was much needed. Paityn even slept for about an hour.
Chuck-A-Rama. Sounds like some dated restaurant from the 60s, where you talk into a clown head to place your order. Yeah…the name doesn’t give you good vibes…but we decided to give it a whirl and were very happy we did.
Chuck-A-Rama is a home-style cooking buffet and we were kind of expecting something like a Golden Corral or Ryan’s but find it to have a much nicer decor and a really nice setting for the buffets. There were about 8 or 10 entrée offerings: hand carved roast beef, roast turkey and ham, beef stroganoff, turkey and stuffing, baked chicken, fried chicken, bbq chicken legs and fish. Then there was mac & cheese (yum!), baked potatoes, funeral potatoes and mashed potatoes. Pizza, french fries, spaghetti and veggies are just a few of the other offerings. And I haven’t even mentioned the salad bar, various salads (broccoli salad, cole slaw, potato salad, jello, fruit, etc), the soup, home made rolls or the DESERTS.
Cost was a bit steep (but if you can really shovel it in…it might really be worth it for you) at $14.99 for an adult and children paying by age…our 4 year old was $3.40…not bad in my opinion. We’d definitely recommend this local Utah establishment and wouldn’t mind going again (and again) ourselves.
We got home about 7:30 and were all pretty tired but Mama & Papa were due to land in Salt Lake City about 7:45 and would be home by 9:00 so the kids got things put away, got their jammies on and settled in on the couch to watch a little TV until their parents got home.
Nana & Papaw were happy to seem Mama & Papa come in the door cuz then a lot of our responsibilities went out the door. Love our babies and grandbabies (and even grandpups) but we’re not used to so much responsibility at one time! We were pooped! LOL