The Crazy Chapmans
Jordan, Emily, Natalie, and Zachary

Archive for September, 2010

Chickens Eating Tomatoes

Sat ,25/09/2010

Well, we knew it was only a matter of time before our chickens discovered the garden. They’re pretty smart (for chickens). We first noticed nice round nests in the dirt, then noticed that only about 1/8 of the corn plants we planted actually grew, they chickens ate the rest of them. At this point in time we just had some chicken wire surrounding their coop (about 2 feet tall). After the corn incident we put a new fence that was two chicken wires high (about 4 feet). Then we watched the chickens jump out of the hole between the two strips of wire. At this point we were thinking, really? Are they that smart?

So we went back to the store and bought some 4 foot fence wire and posts. We put it up, and guess what happened? They jumped over it! At first we didn’t realize what was happening, we just noticed that our tomatoes were getting eaten and we thought other birds were maybe doing it. Then one day we came home from church and Speckles was chowing down on one of the huge heirloom tomatoes, I was so upset that I chucked the eaten tomato at her (I didn’t hit her). The next day I came home from work and the same thing happened, except this time I hit Tantan with the tomato. Now we’ve pretty much given up, really, can you blame them, who doesn’t like fresh garden tomatoes?

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That was also the week day that one of the chickens died (it was very sad). All of the chickens had been roaming around but had gone to sit under the coop because it was a very hot day. I went out because I only saw 4 and thought one of them was out. Then I looked inside the coop and FattyX3 was laying down and clucking funny. I was really upset so I got Jordan and he tried to take her out so we could help her and she died, it was very sad. Also there was a huge egg (so big the egg carton wouldn’t close) next to her. We called the chicken farmer we bought her from and he said it was probably a combination of the heat and the huge egg.  What a sad way to go…

Racquetball with Jonathan at the Y

Thu ,23/09/2010

The last few days that Jonathan was in Missouri, we finally made the connection that both of us liked to play racquetball.  I think we brought it up when they first got here but we never really thought about it until one of us brought it up again.  Anyway, we played twice and it was a lot of fun.  His apartment gave them a free YMCA membership for the summer and they allow guests to get in for free up to two times so I didn’t have to pay.  He beat me one game the first time we played but other than that, I basically thrashed him.  But he held his own for sure and he definitely got better as we kept playing.  We played for like 2.5 hours each time so it really exhausted us but we’re young and invincible so we didn’t care.  Our wives were good enough to let us play for that long; they hung out while we did.

Camping with the Kershaw’s

Wed ,22/09/2010

Ok, so as we are looking through things we haven’t posted on yet, I found that we haven’t written about our camping trip with the Kershaw’s.  I can’t believe it.  We went camping with them way back in May (21st to the 22nd).  That must have not been too long after they had gotten here to Missouri.  Sheesh, I was already hard at work at making them be our friends even back then!  :)

Well, we went car camping at the tower trailhead at Hercules Glade Wilderness area.  We had a lot of fun with them.  We brought lots of yummy food.  The weather was great and I think we all slept really well.  We lent them our sierra designs tent which I like a lot as a backpacking tent but Emily doesn’t like it too much because it’s hard to sit up in.  It was the first tent I had as a teenager.  Anyway, we just played some games with them at night.  The next morning, we did some hiking.  Melissa starting developing some rashes on her arms so the girls took the shorter loop back to the car while they were brave enough to let Jonathan and I do the longer route which ended up being ~10 miles.  We ran some of the time.  Anyway, we went along at a pretty good pace and got to the car just 30 minutes or so after the womenfolk got there.  We had a fun time with them.

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Young Women Shooting Activity

Wed ,22/09/2010

On August 12 we had a really cool Young Women Activity. Tessa is one of the best sharp shooters in the country and really wanted to have the young women shoot. Her only stipulation was that the boys had to be there too so they could see that a girl was just as good (and even better) than them.

Chase and Sadie even shot some guns, it was pretty cool.The shooting range people were so nice, they let us do it for free and even stayed after hours so that we could have all the youth shoot.

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Cricket Creek 8.7.10

Tue ,21/09/2010

One of our favorite places to go during the summer is Table Rock Lake. It is a huge lake and there are so many places on the lake you can go swimming but our favorite has become Cricket Creek. There are lots of picnic places and most of them have grills (which we have yet to use).

On August 7, we went to the lake with the Armstrongs and the Hoyals, and it was a lot of fun. Everyone (well adults) went off the rope swing on the other side, it was terrifying. There was a cool bird that kept hanging out next to our picnic table and the Sunset was beautiful.  We got these cool silhouette like pictures of the Armstrongs  and we just had a great time.

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Ridge Runner with Jonathan

Mon ,20/09/2010

We’ve gotten so far behind on writing blog posts.  Expect a lot to come out the next couple of days.

We’ve written some about our new friends, the Kershaw’s, and the stuff we did with them while they were out in Missouri while Jonathan did an internship with Dairiconcepts.  One thing I did with Jonathan was we did a 20 mile backpacking trip on July 30th to the 31st.  Let’s just say that it was one of the hardest backpacking trips I’ve gone on; not necessarily just physically but mentally as well.  Let me explain.

We went on a trail called the Ridge Runner trail.  It goes from Noblett Lake to the North Fork Recreation Area (or vice versa).  The long Ozark trail joins the ridge runner trail for a few miles before going it’s own way.  The trail, we don’t think, is frequented by people very much.  It is very narrow with the forest growth literally surrounding you as you walked on most of the trail.  We hiked in poison ivy on a few sections of the trail.  Jonathan had rashes on his legs for at least a week after the hike.  We probably ran into 1500 spider webs that had been strategically placed by thousands of spiders to cause us mental anguish.  We were picking spiders out of our hair and flicking them off of us all the time.  Whoever was in front (and Jonathan was the good friend who probably took a larger than fair share of the time in front) had to wave the walking stick in front of them which helped alleviate the number of spider webs that were ran into.  It helped to a degree but really not much.  A few miles, or so we thought, before the end, we ran out of water.  Being a hot July day, that wasn’t such a good thing.  We drank way more water than we thought we would.  It’s funny because I’m one that always ends up with way too much water at the end of a hike, but not this time.  As it turned out, I had accidently reset my GPS trip data and so we were within a mile of the end.

When we reached our destination which was the North Fork Recreation Area, we quickly scurried (would have run if we weren’t sore) to a water pump in which we drank way too much and doused ourselves in the fresh water.  One other thing of note happened at night when we set up our tent.  We both had headlights.  Off to the side of our lights we noticed thousands of little lights on the forest ground.  We suspected, and turned out later that we were right, that there were thousands of spiders literally blanketing the forest floor.  I’m sure glad we actually had a tent instead of trying to be real men and sleep out underneath the stars or something.  We probably would have been eaten alive… ok, probably not really.  It was a hot and humid night but I think we both slept fairly well considering the circumstances.

After everything was said and done, it was a lot of fun and I’m glad Jonathan did it with me.  I think we both had a good experience proving to the trail that we overcame it (we yelled at the trail at the end to “step your game up!”, an inside joke that perhaps only Dairiconcepts workers would understand…).  Thanks Jonathan!

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IFT in the Windy City Part 2

Mon ,20/09/2010

Sunday was the annual meeting and Jordan got the all access pass for the convention but I got the expo only, so I thought I couldn’t go to the meeting (I found out after it was over that I could have).I stayed at the hotel and got ready and Chicken Run was on, I kept thinking that the chickens would totally have died the first night they escaped.

I got on the Shuttle to the convention center and met Jordan. We spent the day at the convention and met up with some people from BYU. We spent the day at the expo and then went back to our hotel.

That night a company that Jordan’s buys stuff from had a cruise that left from Navy Pier. It was a lot of fun because it was at night so we got some awesome shots of the skyline.

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We spent half of Monday at the convention and left to come home that afternoon. It was really fun to see people from BYU and to go to Chicago. I’m so glad we don’t live there, I think it smells funny.

IFT in the Windy City Part 1

Sun ,19/09/2010

One of the benefits of being in the same field of employment is that  we both get to go to the same conventions and other work things. This year the IFT annual convention was in Chicago and we both got to go. Jordan found an amazing deal on tickets and the hotel. Part of this great deal that he got required us to go to Chicago a day earlier than the convention stared, darn…

So we flew out early Saturday morning and got to our hotel, the Palmer House, before 9a. On a side note, it took us a while to get to the hotel because they were filming Transformers 3, so roads were closed and movable bridges were up so we had to go on the scenic route, but we didn’t mind. We couldn’t check in until that afternoon, but they had a great service that allowed us to leave our baggage at the hotel and they would take it to our room when we checked in.

With plenty of time to spend around Chicago we started to plan what we wanted to do. The first thing we did was stop and get breakfast at this cute little corner bistro. On the way in this guy tried to hand us a map/newspaper and I thought they were free but as soon as he handed us one he said we needed us to pay a “donation” for the newspaper, so I handed it back. (Oops). The he started to follow us into the restaurant, double oops. So we decided that we wanted to go Millennial Park by the Chicago Art Institute, Navy Pier, and the Shedd Aquarium. So we started walking.
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We walked from the Hotel to Millennial Park and there were hundreds of people doing Yoga. Apparently there is free yoga every Saturday, pretty cool. We walked through the park to Navy Pier. For anyone who is wondering, it may seem pretty simple to walk from the hotel to the Pier, but it’s not. There are lots of trails that are in the park that just kind of end.

So we finally got to Navy Pier, but the stores didn’t open until 11, and we got there before 11a so we just walked around. It was pretty cool, but not that exciting because everything was closed.

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After walking around the pier we decided that we were going to take a water taxi to the Aquarium. The water taxi was really cool because we got to see unobstructed views of the Chicago skyline. When we got to the Aquarium there was a huge line. We waited about an hour to get in, but it was worth it.

They had a lot of exhibits open, but my favorites were the jellyfish, the clownfish, and the baby manatee. The penguins were pretty funny too.

We stayed at the Aquarium a long time  then we walked back to our hotel. On the way back we passed this huge party by a giant fountain. After we got back to the hotel we checked in and asked the Concierge where a good place to get authentic Chicago style pizza was. He said that a local favorite is Pizano’s. So we called and got a reservation, but the earliest one was at 9p (we called at 5). We decided we were really hungry so we just walked there.

When we got there they told us that it takes an hour for them to make the food because the pizzas are made to order, so we put in our order before we sat down and waited. We waited an hour and 45 minutes before we got our pizza because the waitress forgot to put the order in. It was really good pizza, but I still think I like New York style better.