Phoenix, AZ - Day 1 - 03/13/2012

Published at 2:56 PM in ,

Today we had a fabulous, huge breakfast cooked for us by none other than Larry Langley.  There were pancakes, eggs, sausage, bacon, and biscuits - all homemade, of course!

Trampoline in their pajamas!

After breakfast, the kids were playing outside, jumping on the trampoline, and in general just having fun.  The adults were all visiting and trying to decide what to do for the day.  We settled on visiting the western town attraction of Rawhide Western Town, just outside of Phoenix.

Michael the sharp-shooter
Rawhide was a real western town experience! You could ride a stagecoach, ride donkeys, watch a shoot-out show, and much, much more!  A great surprise when we walked in the gate was the buy-one, get-one free promotion they had going on for spring break.  It wasn't ridiculously priced to begin with, and so this made it even better.
Lasso gals
Once we walked in the gate, they had free gifts for the kids.  There were bandanas, lasso ropes, and cowboy hats that they could have, and they were allowed to pick two of the three.  Michael chose two bandanas, Kyle chose a bandana and a rope, and all three girls chose hats and ropes.  They all got the hang of the ropes really quickly.

The shoot-out show
First we watched a shoot-out show with the Marshall, the town goofball, and two bad guys.  They did great stunts - falling from the roof of a building and a balcony when shot.

Kyle & Michael on the train
Next we went on a train ride through a little part set up to look like an old deserted ghost town.  After that, Rachael, Chrissy, and Brenna rode donkeys.  We got a laugh because Rachael's donkey peed as it walked, and then Brenna's just stopped altogether to pee.   The girls were all grossed out.

Rachael & Kyle on the rock wall
Next was the rock-climbing wall and panning for gold.  Larry hopped up there and climbed right up - he made it look easy!  Kyle and Michael took their turn, and both did pretty well, although they didn't make it all the way up.  Chrissy and Rachael took turns, too.

Larry & Chrissy petting the goats

Right next to the rock wall was panning for gold.  They had large little chunks of 'gold' for the kids to find. And although it was obviously not real gold, the kids had fun doing it anyway.  There was also an animal show, Texas Kate's Wild West Show.  She had a trained dog and horse that performed for the crowd.  She said that all of her animals had been rescued, and some of the others could be seen in the petting zoo.  The two newest members were emus.  So after we finished the show, we went to the petting zoo.  There was a pretty decent variety of animals: pigs, goats, the emus, and chickens.

Ice cream break

We took a break from the heat and enjoyed some ice cream…you know, the lunch of champions!  After that tasty treat, we watched pig races.  After the first race, even bigger pigs raced, and then three geece raced.  Jim was chosen to be a cheerleader for our section (BIG surprise, right?), which was assigned a particular goose to cheer for. The video for him cheering is below. It was a lot of fun.

The guys decided to take in another show, while us girls did a little bit of shopping.  Kelly found a really cute purse, and Larry was so sweet and bought it for her. :)

The last activity was riding a mechanical bull.  The Langley's older daughter, Jacey, rode the bull and did pretty well.  Rachael and Michael also rode the bull…pretty good for their age!

Waiting for Dinner at the Elephant Bar
We headed out of Rawhide having had a fabulous time.  We stopped for dinner in Chandler at a place called Elephant Bar.  It wasn't really a bar - it was a safari themed restaurant.  The food was fantastic!  We were all satisfied and happy.  We celebrated all the kids' birthdays with ice cream sundaes.  It was a fun way to round out the day.

Larry & the scorpion jar

After we got back to their house, Larry and Kelly were telling us about the scorpion problem in southern Arizona.  They hide in the brick walls outside, and any other place where they can.  They've found about three in their house. They said the summer is the worst time for scorpions, and it's not unusual to her ambulances come for people who get stung.  So Larry and the kids make a game of scorpion hunting.  Jim and Rachael, of all people, wanted to go.  They use a black light and a giant pair of tweezers.  Once they catch one, they have this huge, empty pickle jar with chlorine in it that they put them in because the chlorine kills them.  They said sometimes they will catch one with the babies on its back, and as soon as you pick it up, the babies scatter everywhere.  I personally couldn't deal with scorpions like that.  The kids always have to wear shoes going outside, just in case they step on one.  It's crazy how they glow under the black light.  They caught a HUGE scorpion.  Yuck!! 

It was a another great day with the Langleys! We are so enjoying our visit!

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