• Amy Slater

Mountain Trip Part Two: Poor William and marshmallows!

The Gem Mining Adventure: Poor William!


After our hike, we set off to go gem mining! It was about a 1 ½ hour trip to get up and through the mountains. The roads were so winding and twisting that we had some green kiddos when we arrived.

Now, this is pretty funny, but at the time not! William was the whole reason we chose to go gem mining. William asked what it would be like and Kevin jokingly told him they would give him a bucket, pick axe, and shovel and send him up the mountain to find his gems. He was pumped!! So, when we arrived and he saw the dirt already in the buckets and the flume to sift the soil, he was VERY disappointed. He threw the biggest fit saying it was all fake and just for babies! He vowed not to participate and instead chose to pout in a rocking chair and watch everyone else have a good time!

The girls and Cameron had a blast despite the VERY cold water and cold wind. Annabelle kept asking the mine attendant about her gems. He got the biggest kick out of it because she was so articulate.

When we were done and William saw the cool gems the girls and Cameron found, he was even more upset! So, he complained and whined for about 20 minutes after we left the gem mine. Once he mentally worked through it, he was ok. Kids are SO funny!!

Hike number two!


When we arrived back home, I was ready for another hike! Notice I said I here! I am happiest when I am in motion… especially in motion outside! Being in the car with kids can be stressful! Especially when they are unhappy about something. It can be a total energy suck. Doing something active outside is energizing and a way to recharge my batteries following a stressful event! My husband, Kevin is just the opposite! He would have been perfectly happy to lay on the couch and watch football! But, with four kids and a wife ready to explore… he was outnumbered! 🙂


SO, we unloaded the cooler and lunchboxes from our little excursion and I repacked them for the next day and put dinner in the oven to warm while Kevin relaxed for a few minutes and watched football. As relaxing as it can be with two four-year-olds climbing on you asking when we were going to go! 🙂

We set off on a shortened version of the hike we were going to do in the morning. The girls made it all the way to the Treehouses which they loved! It was bliss watching them slip, get up, climb up and over and navigate through streams and muddy patches. Annabelle LOVES having her picture taken any chance she can! It is a huge thrill to see herself on the phone.

All four had their VIVOBAREFOOT KIDS shoes on. They kept commenting on how the ground felt so good on their feet like they were not even wearing shoes. Annabelle said, “I like how my piggies fell in the forest in my Vivos Mommy!” Isn’t that cute!! Such a sweet observation.

We eventually made it to the Treehouses where there was also an outdoor fireplace and a stream running behind the camp. It was great fun to watch the girls try to keep pace wherever the boys went!


In fact, that is always the case… wherever the boys are being exactly where the girls want to be. It is fun to hear them say I can do it too!! I love that spirit! They have this natural drive, a sense of confidence, and huge personalities like they are little adventurers. It is awesome to see! This picture completely embodies who they are!

This time Annabelle made it the whole way this and Maddy took a ride on my shoulders. By the time we arrived back at the house, it was time for dinner. Fortunately, thanks to planning and preparation… dinner was ready to go!


Dinner and Marshmallows!!


I roasted two chickens and baked a bunch of sweet potatoes on Thursday morning for dinners Saturday and Sunday night on vacation. We enjoyed chicken, steamed frozen green beans, and sweet potatoes for dinner Saturday night! The big excitement came from the novel activity of roasting marshmallows in the fireplace. They were all so excited!! Cameron wanted to try one “raw”. He tried to like it but ended up spitting it out. Then William tried one roasted and also tried really hard to like it. Maddy spits hers out and Annabelle joyfully ate hers. Cameron asked what was in them and why they did not catch on fire or melt right away when you hold them in the flame. It was a good question, I told him simply that real food responds to fire as you would expect, by burning. Fake food does not. So, why did I buy the marshmallows and let them try them? Lately, I feel like there is real value in letting the kids experience, taste, and try what they see and are curious about. At this point, I feel like I have established enough value in real food to let their palate and knowledge guide their choice.

Day two was in the books! Stay tuned for part three!!