Friday, September 25, 2015

Hale Family Reunion at the Ranch

 Torrey Disc Golfing

I love the blue sky against the red sand and cliffs. 

Hike #1 Upper Calf Creek

Here are some jumpers and sliders.    Joey's aerial, Lissa sliding, Luke, Lucy, Maryanne and I "sliding" and then the last clip is of Maryanne falling asleep in the midst of singing  "Party in the USA". 

Hike #2  Lower Calf Creek

This is the first time I have done this hike.  It was a little over 6 miles round trip and so it was a lot of walking.  Very fitting since it was also Pioneer day. 

My kids got very excited about this catcus

Anderson and Lissa took turns carrying Freddy and sometimes Maryanne.  They were so awesome.

We made it!  It was so beautiful... and SO cold!

Lissa, I'm sure, clocked the most time actually spent in the (freezing cold!) water.  She's a determined fun-haver.  Second runner up would be Mike Malmborg.  


Hanging out at the Ranch

Our first morning there, Harrison and Freddy met for a brief moment before Katie and Colton had to leave.  I really wish we got to spend more time with them because I really like them. 
ahhh, the coveted tramp sleepover
Cole spending time playing catch with Freddy

Oh and I should probably document our "Pie n' Beer Day" celebration.  We bought a bunch of different kinds of Root Beer and did a blind taste test.  I think A&W won.  And we made homemade pizza pies.  It was a fun night.  

and... last and most certainly least.  Terrible toilet trouble.  And the good folks who spent hours fixing it.

Oh, but we can't end this post with toilet pictures.  How about a lovely song from Lucy and Lissa...

This melts my heart.

Oh cousins.  It's so wonderful to see all my nieces and nephews grow up into these amazing people who care for and are such great examples to their little cousins.   Love the ranch!!  Love this family!!!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The years of the Ranch

Ok so we thought we hadn't been to the ranch for 4 years, but I was sitting down trying to figure out what years we had come and it turns out we hadn't been there for 3 years because we went in 2012.  So I decided to document my findings (of when we've been to the ranch) just for fun.   

 1988? - Came along as a babysitter for the McKay boys for a Scouting thing.  My dad and bros were there.  I remember a lot of otter pops, hiking upper calf creek and that I bought a sage colored Torrey shirt.  I possibly went more than once when I was a kid.  Mom?  Dad? 

1996 - Senior Trip.  This is funny because I had the idea and planned the whole thing even though it wasn't my ranch.  Casey and Edith came and chaperoned.  There were 8 boys and 4 girls.  Pat Ahern, Todd Grunander, Preston Cox, Spencer Burton, Joey Hale, Mike Malmborg, Jake Wood and Charles Richardson?  I think.  And the girls were me, Hailey Anderson, Brianna Peterson and Trisha Buhrley?  I think.  And isn't it funny that 3 of those high school buddies are now family and regularly visit that ranch.

2003 - we went in the fall.  It was the first time I went as Joey's girlfriend.   But Kate totally upstaged us by bringing Caleb. :)  It was a big to-do because it was the first time everyone was meeting him.   I was just good old Katie Songer.  This was the first time I met Caleb too. He was so easy to talk to and everyone in the family fell in love with him.  It wasn't too long after this that they got engaged.  And we did about a month after them.

2004 - Went down as friends - Malmborgs, Woods, Wilsons and us... (and Weavers?)  We played paintball in the back foothills and I got hit right in the face.  Lots of board games and Bang!  

2005 - This was our first famiy ranch trip as a married couple.  And I sort of hated it.  We slept on the ground in the hall and got stepped on.  I got bloody noses every morning from the dry air (because we were living in Maryland and my body forgot how to handle the desert).  But I loved being part of the family.  All the sisters stayed up and talked one night and we had funny talents shows.  I have one solitary picture to prove we were there in the year 2005.  All these girls are now ELEVEN.  (this is just a picture of a picture)

2006 - I remember being at the ranch and finding out that Kate had Jane while we where all there.  Although I don't have a single picture from that ranch trip.  And I think we left early to go to our 10 year high school reunion.  This also might have been the year we went mountain biking with the cresaps and mike pulsipher and I got a terrible sunburn on my lower back because my shirt had ridden up and I didn't realize it.  I had a big sun spot there for about 5 years.  Juli called it my tramp stamp.  :)

these next years are all blogged so you can click on the year to see the post about them

2007 - lots of 4-wheeling.  Muddy Capital Reef waterfall - looked like thick chocolate milk.  I was pregnant with Luke.  

2009 - mom & dad Hale were there, Kate was in charge?  Super organized and fun.  Everyone brought something to share.  Lisa did Kukuwa, Joey taught rope making, it was my birthday, we hiked the newly discovered narrows where you have to use bikes or 4-wheelers to get in.  I think it's called Pleasant Creek.   Juli was there.  We had a big family meeting where everyone took a few minutes to teach something.  Juli taught about food handling safety, Kate taught us about photography.  Joey and I brought kareoke.  We hiked rainbow bridge.
2011 - mom & dad Hale were there, solleyball, peakaboo and spooky slot canyons, Aunt Karen was there.  Wilsons too.
2012 - Sarah's scavenger hunt, first time playing Torrey disc golf  

And 2015 is coming up....

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Sarah's birthday (vol.4)

Sarah would have been 35 on July 19th.  It was nice to be home with family to celebrate her.   We met early Sunday morning at the beautiful Huntsville cemetery and sang her some songs and shared some Sarah stories.

All the grandkids sang "Families Can be Together Forever"

Lissa and Megan played and sang "What a Wonderful World"

Casey, Edith, Ani and Lissa sang "Come Thou Fount"

Rachel and I sang "For the Beauty of the Earth"

Sunny Sunrise - Happy Brirthday Sarah!!

 Sarah's family
 My heart swelled seeing these two walking together hand in hand.  I snapped a pic too late - but I sure love these two and how they take care of each other.  (Jack and Rachel - Sarah's kids)

We went to church and it was wonderful.  All the talks and lessons were so comforting and lovely.  Chad McKay taught Sunday School on the Resurrection.  He quoted Mosiah 16:8  "But there is a resurrection, therefore the grave hath no victory, and the sting of death is swallowed up in Christ."   And then I went to Primary where Tiffany Bowen led an inspired singing time.  Jack (Sarah's son) was visiting and said "today is my step-mom's birthday!" and Tiffany got a little teary and said - "you know what - let's sing 'Families are of God'!"  And we all sang...."God gave us families / to help us become what He wants us to be / This is how He shares His love / for the family is of God"  It was truly a wonderful day.  I loved it.

And here are time-machine Katie and Sarah in their little home-made dresses by Aunt Diane.  We wore these when we were little.   (I'm going to find a picture of us in these and post it)

Later that day after dinner we had a true Sarah dance party. At least I think she would have liked it. Plenty of glitter, sparkles and weirdos.

And then the Sugar Cereal Buffet.  Bags and boxes of all kinds of sugar cereal. A Songer birthday tradition.

It was a really good day.  I miss my sister so much but am happy that her memory is alive and well.  And that she continues to provide us with some spice and happiness just with her memory.   The day she was born into this world and into our family is truly something to celebrate!   Happy Birthday Serber!

{most pictures taken by Jenny}

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Songer Family Reunion

 We arrived in Utah on my dad's birthday.  And the best thing about my dad is HE treats everyone to a dinner at Maddox for HIS birthday.   We like that guy.  It was a funny night and so great to be together - just the grown-ups.   

Oh there actually was one non grown-up there.  My newest nephew Beckham!  I got to meet him and hold him and love him.  I didn't get a picture of him that night but here is one around the same time -

For my dad's birthday our kids gave him a thank you book for all the cool projects he's done on our house.  Just printed these all these out and they stapled it into a book.  (I guess click on them if you want to actually read the bubbles)
The book

July 16th -
Joey took off to the hills.   He went disc golfing at Solitude and said it was just beautiful.  There were lots of wild flowers, big tall aspen and pine trees, fresh crisp mountain air.  It looked like it had been professionally landscaped but it was all just wild.   He met up with a dental dude who might help manage a practice in Utah if we ever get there and then Mike, Jake, Jared and he spent 4 brutal hours on the FlowRider a the Solomon Center.  Poor Joes - his friends make him have fun too long and then he's all old and broken. 

Meanwhile - the kids and I did some swimming at the McKays with some Hunstville cousins.  Although I think the only actual McKay swimming with us was Brigham.  Those McKays are hard to get. :)

I think Freddy digs the old time feel of Hunstville - riding in the back of the truck with no shirt on. 

I got to take Lucy on a date to The Little Mermaid at Hale Center Theatre.  This was a highlight of the trip for me.   I really wish I would have written about this the night it happened because it was just so magical and such a fun bonding night for us.  Jenny and Eliza came too.


I can't even begin to describe the play but I just got that euphoria that comes sometimes with really sensational live performances.  We were sitting on the front row and at any moment we could have reached out and touched the sea witch or flounder or ariel.  And Lucy was in my lap and whenever something funny happened she'd turn around and look at my and we'd laugh and when she got excited she squeezed my hand.  I loved it so much.  

And she got to learn about Grandpa Nathan and Grandma Ruth.

By Saturday the Songer Family Reunion was in full swing.  My dad had been building the waterslide of all waterslides for weeks.  This is the view of the waterslide from the deck --- back in the trees behind the garden.


The Songer men all work to finish what my dad started. 

And then we got to enjoy it

waterslidin2015 from katiehale on Vimeo.
Ahhh cousins 


look-a-like cousins?  I think so.

 ahhh uncles

Celebrating Jack
Celebrating Star

making birdhouses
(grandpa sponsored activity)

A sisters and mom breakfast where we randomly ran into a beloved friend of Sarah's (and all of ours) Downtown Heather Brown.  (Rebekah and Edith had just left)

Our girls got to go to a fancy ball with some stand-in princes  

And play in the newly finished "Kirtland" room at the Harrises with their bestie Eliza

And one of my favorite things was a whole day off.  Joey watched the kids and my mom and I went and got massages and went out to lunch.   It was nice to take our time all day - I never do that.  At the spa we just hung out for a while drinking tea and chatting in the steam room.  Then I think we were at CafĂ© Rio for like 3 hours just talking.  It was a very lovely day.  I love me mum.

and here we all are...
Songer Family 2015

and the GRAND parents who started it all
photos by Jenny

Every story has a beginning...

Joey and Katie first met in Mr. Hawkes 3rd grade class at Valley Elementary. They became good friends in Jr. High and best friends in High School. Katie wrote to Joey on his mission in Tiajuana and Joey wrote to Katie later on her mission in Tokyo. Years later at the ripe old age of 25, these best friends finally fell in love... or maybe just realized they were already in love. They got married on January 22, 2004.

happy kids

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