Monday, February 23, 2015

Ice Castles at Soldier Hollow

In January James learned about a place in Japan that creates ice castles, and everything in them is also made of ice including pianos and tables and chairs.  He wanted to visit them very badly, but we told him that it was too much money.  Well, a few days later a piggy bank that we've been filling since we were married broke, and coins went everywhere.  I had James pick them all up and fill up a quart sized baggie.  He brought them to me and asked "Is this enough money to go see the ice castles now?".  Melt my heart {no pun intended!}.  I decided to look up when the ice castles would be open in Midway that they do each year.  With the unusually warm winter, they were only going to open for one weekend only on Jan. 23rd-25th.  We had to go!  Midway is next to Heber, so I asked the Parks' if they wanted to come too, and so we made a fun overnight trip of it!  We went on the 23rd, a Friday, the first night they opened.  I'm glad too because with as many people as went I'm sure the castles took a beating.  Parking was tricky, but it was worth the wait.  While waiting for a parking spot I helped the boys get into their snow gear.  Jonathan too.  Nathan was in charge of his own clothes, and currently doesn't even own snow boots.  Let's just say he wasn't as toasty warm, and his toes were freezing. 

We found Elsa and Anna!

Walking around and admiring the ice!

Some examples of the ice structures

The ice didn't disappoint!! James loved it! We took pictures to send to his class to share too!

In line for the ice slide!  
Yep, that was Jack's happy face:)
That is one thing that both my boys asked if they had, and I was so glad (sigh of relief!) that they had in fact made a few ice slides. The railings were made of pebble ice, the slide of ice blocks.

Jack headed down

James' turn.  They both went about three times

Quinn's turn!

Aubreigh took a turn

My turn!
Unfortunately my tailbone hit so hard at the bottom of the slide that I did see stars.

Nathan with precious cargo.  
Jonathan was bundled, then had on a bear fuzzy snowsuit (which was a 3-6mo we had for the other boys when they were little, but I'm too cheap to buy another so we are squeezing him in, barely).
This was a "slot canyon" made of ice!

James and mommie selfie and James' ice he wanted to carry around

There was constant music and lights changing

Sometimes purple...

...sometimes blue.

Bennett getting a ride with his daddy

A family picture

Looks like Queen Elsa had been there.
Actually I asked her if she had made this castle, but she said this wasn't her castle and she wanted to see who else had ice powers.

As we were headed toward the exit, some people were cordoning off an area for a fire show.  I did try to talk to one of the guys, but he seemed a little weird, but hey you probably have to be if you want to swing fire or breathe fire.  So this was to be a "fire and ice" show.
Getting ready

Fire breathing demo
Aubreigh talked to one of the officials from the ice castles, and it turns out the fire people were there last year, and were paid to be.  This year however they were not hired, and they just showed up and started doing the show.  They did know they weren't getting paid from the ice castle and so put out a hat in which to collect donations.  It was just a bit odd because they were really pushing for donations. Anyway, we enjoyed a little of their show, but Nathan headed to the car because his feet by this time were freezing.  He was the one cold, and all my littles were warm and toasty, even Jonathan didn't cry!  

Watching the fire show

Jack was a little worried about the fire, which is a good thing because fire is dangerous and I wanted them to remember that.  At least the fire demo people always cautioned to not try any of their moves at home.

The Parks' Family

Daddy, Mommy, and three J's

We headed to the Parks' home after seeing the castles, and then had hot chocolate and a snack.  We stayed up late talking about the cruise that we will be taking together in May, then spent the night and got to play the next day with them too! We went on a date out to eat and played bowling, laser tag, and mini golf.  The boys all stayed with a babysitter at their home, then after our date we headed back to our house.
Overall this was a grand weekend.
This is their "Cool Running's" impersonation of making a bobsled and then practicing :)
(That is also a new movie (new to them!) that they like based off a winter sport)
Yeah for ice castles, and this whole weekend being based off of seeing something he learned about in Kindergarten!