grl top twenty

Aug 13, 2010

My favorite place in the whole world.


Pink clouds over Cat Ears

This little piece of heaven brings me peace, joy clear down to my little toes, courage to face hard things, and so much more. I am so grateful for these mountains, the frigid water, the moose that wander on the beach in the early morning hours, the wind in the trees, the sunrise over Osborne, the rugged sturdiness of Square Top, the seven little streams on the shady side of the lake, Mill Creek, rainbow trout and the mighty fishermen who catch them, the Sleeping Giant, Clear Creek Meadow, the tradition our family has had for forty years of camping there, the friends who join us, the strangers we meet, and the connection we all feel to this beautiful place.

Here are the Top Twenty from our Green River Lakes camping trip this year – in no particular order!

1. Watching Fisher jump off the bridge all by his little own self AND swim about 20 feet to me.

2. Scott pitching to Fisher.

3. Blythe and Andie’s 14th birthday parties…with 28 people at the first one and 18 people at the second. Plus, we got to eat two different birthday cakes and yummy ice cream. Good thing we have girls with August birthdays so we have a reason to have a big treat up there every year!

Guests at the first party


First Birthday cake



Head scratchers from Grandma
Head scratchers from Grandma

“LIfe is Good” shirts from Grandma


"Life is Good" shirts from Grandma

Annesley and birthday cake

Annesley & birthday cake

Blythe’s Birthday book
Blythe's Birthday book

Blythe’s new “Life is Good” hat
"Life is Good" hat

The second birthday cake

Andie's Birthday cake

Andie’s new battery charger

Andie's new battery charger

4. Setting up camp three times in less than 24 hours.

5. Watching Jared and Fisher catch bugs together for hours on end.

6. Jumping off the bridge, swinging on Scott’s ingenius swing under the bridge, and swimming in the water hole in the river. Courage awards for bridge jumping go to Samuel (4), Fisher (5), Teryn (5), Christian (7), Jaxon (8), Keziah (9), Eve (10), Tiegen (11), Marcus (13), Tod (13), Blythe (14), Andie (14), Scott, Tracy, Camille, Austin, Tonya, Chance (8), Alyssa (11), and Logan. Yes, we are awesome.

Here is Fisher’s whole jumping process:

Watching everyone else jump


Thinking about jumping…how far is it anyway?
Fisher thinking about the bridge

Being lifted over by Uncle Scott


Getting ready to jump

Getting ready to jump

In the air!

In the air!

Coming up out of the water

Coming up out of the water

He made it!

He made it!

In mama’s arms at last!

In mama's arms at last

Andie on the swing


Teryn on the swing

Teryn on the swing


Annesley on the swing


Fisher on Scott's ingenius swing





Camille jumping off the bridge


Camille again


7. Beating Mom and Scott at Rook…I’m sure it is the first and last time that will ever happen.

8. Annesley and Teryn lovin’ on Uncle Logan. Teryn was basically glued on to him the entire time. Uncle Logan made them both bracelets and gave Fisher his own necklace to take care of till he can make one for him as well.



9. Going on a hike all alone with Camille and Tami (and of course, her little cutie, Jace). Yes, Tami came clear from Colorado to camp with us and Camille rearranged her college test schedule so she could be up there when we were there. Thank you guys for making my camping trip wonderful. I love you both!

Our hike was made possible by Tracy, Camille’s oldest, taking eleven children with her on their own hike. What an amazing girl she is!

Tami and Jace

Tami & Jace

10. Discovering my long-lost friend Tonya camped right next to us! It has been 11+ years since we have seen each other and 20 years since I first took her to Green River Lakes. Spotting her walking through the campground is one of the tender mercies God has given me. Thank goodness we decided to canoe across the lake at 6:30 a.m. on our last morning there. Beautiful mountains, good conversation, a bald eagle right above us, and two golden eagles flying nearby.

Tami, Tonya, and Moi

Bald Eagle

Other side of the lake

Golden Eagles

11. Lots of cousin time together…all told we had 21 second and third cousins playing with each other…not including our generation of 1st and 2nd cousins.

Blythe, Andie, and Tod

Blthe, Andie, & Marcus

Eve, Teryn, and Keziah

Annes and Jace

Annesley and Jace



12. Swimming at the Aquatic Center on our way home with Tonya and her adorable family and then being treated to a delicious dinner by her stubborn and insistent husband, Ryan.

13. Keziah climbing on top of our new-to-us-given-to-us forty-year-old camper to put a tarp on top to stop the leaking from the rainstorm our first night there. She should be a mountain climber some day.

14. Playing softball with family and friends and watching Fisher tackle cousins to get the ball in his mitt first. He has come a long way from the shy little boy he used to be.

15. Logan’s dutch oven peach cobbler. Yummm!

16. Grandma playing Garbage with all the kids on her blanket in the shade.

17. Sleeping eight people and all our gear in a camper made for half that many.

18. Scott holding Annesley, Jace, or Taz on an daily hourly basis and helping them be happy while games are played, meals are cooked, or older siblings are attended to. What a great uncle he is!

Scott & Annesley

19. Watching Sadie leap over Mill Creek and dash into the water.

20. Sitting around the campfire at night, seeing shooting stars, gorgeous constellations, and the Milky Way while listening to Scott’s hilarious stories with the people I love most in this world.

21. I couldn’t stop with 20…my favorite thing of all is watching my husband fish with a smile on his face and contentment oozing out of his body. He needs this trip even more than I do and I am so glad he got to fish and catch some big ones.



How many fishing poles can these guys use at one time?


Green River Lakes is not really mine, but it sure feels like it. It is the place I think of when I think of love, family, hope, fun, good meals, growing up, laughing with Camille, and of course, my dear grandparents. I can’t imagine a summer going by without this annual trip. The beauty and the majesty of these mountains is just what I need to get me through another year.

More pics…

Blythe and Grandma

Blythe and Grandma

Keziah and Sadie

Keziah and Sadie

Annesley and the worms

Annesley and the worms

Fisher and Sadie

Fisher and Sadie

Mikelle, Andie, and Kez


Fisher and his papa

Fisher and his papa

The cutest two-year-old ever


Fisher and his catch


Mikelle and Logan


Tami, Teryn, Scott, Christian, the handsome Steevo, Annesley, Fisher, and Richard


Blythe and Andie


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  1. Becky

    Wow Tracy! That sounds like a fabulous trip. So beautiful! I’m glad you’re back!

  2. tracy

    Did you see the pics? Or were they not there yet? If not, go back and check all these lil’ cuties out!

  3. austin

    Hi Tracy! Thanks for sharing your pictures, family, and birthday cake!

    • tracy


      You are welcome anytime! I can’t wait to go kayaking with you next year! What should I look for in a kayak? I am going to be scouring the classifieds trying to find a great deal! When does school start for you? Hopefully you have a few more weeks to enjoy sunshine, water, mountains, and fresh air!

  4. Anne

    Thanks for taking all these pictures! I took a bunch but haven’t found the camera yet. I’m sure it will show up in the unpacking. [Send me the one with my shorts hiked up . . . I need to destroy it!] Great post! Love you!

  5. So. Incredibly. Jealous.

    • tracy

      Sorry to make you jealous…but it is an amazing place. Do you have a favorite place like GRL?