Monday, November 10, 2008


I had to include this pic of Emily at school on Halloween...she's on the left. If you click on the picture, it might blow up larger, just like Emily. Check out the girl sitting on the left, her face says it all....

Misc. House Pics Oct. '08

Here are a couple of random pictures, just FYI.
Emily relaxing on the porch...we enjoyed a great fall this year...
General pic of the new house paints...I'm working on putting in a new door before the serious snow flies.

1 of 8 windows that has since been replaced!

The infamous door fence, since these pics were taken it has received another coat of paint and some caulk in the holes....finished as far as I'm concerned. Much cheaper than the home depot lookalikes...although I value my time at about $1 an hour to come out ahead of the game...

Acklin's Bring Bad Weather (Again!)

Glenn and Julie were nice enough to come for yet another visit, and although they brought the first real snow and cold of the season, we were still able to enjoy ourselves. This was supposed to be Glenn's fishing and hunting trip, unfortunately, the temp was in the upper 20's with about 4" of snow falling in Sheridan, so we nixed that idea.

We opted to brave the trek over to Thermopolis WY to soak in the hot springs which turned out to be a lotta fun. We hit up Star Plunge, one of 3 options for hot spring experiences in Thermop.

This turned out to be the same place where my family and I visited during a family vacation to Yellowstone...I don't think anything had changed, except for the hi-tech crash detection system which had since been "installed" on the tubular waterslide, consisting of an old tower affixed to a rope, which you would pull once you got to the bottom of the slide to signal all clear (or in Glenn's case, signalling that the slide was still intact) rudimentary as this was, it was a great improvement. I can still remember how scared I was on our family vacation when I tried the same waterslide for the first one told me that you needed to arch your back to move, so as I slowly inched my way down the slide, pushing for dear life, I clearly remember the gung-ho screams of the person coming down the slide after me....I started pushing even more frantically, after I realized that he was somehow going about 5x my speed. My claustraphobia didn't help the situaion either. I did not have fun on the waterslide on the family vacation.

16 years later, I was the slide master. Who am I kidding, Glenn was the real slide master, and he let everyone at the pool know this by barreling down the 4-story waterslide causing the entire structure to wobble and make other sounds of general instabilty. He realized that there was a posted weight limit after the first run, and we were all suprised that the pool authorities did not require him to "weigh-in" immediately after. He figured if it could hold him once, it could hold him again, and he definitely got his money's worth on the slide. I think the owner was probably wincing everytime he saw Glenn go back up for another trip down. Glenn also earned Eskimo honors by sunbathing the longest on a snow-covered recliner. Julie didn't quite make it out of the hot springs for this challenge.

However, Julie deserves an honorable mention for her watersliding. She tried the slide without really understanding the full details of the enclosed, dark, sulfurous, and bumpy tubular ride which gave you quite a jolt at the end if you were going fast enough (lawsuit-scale spine twisting) Emily was the lucky one at the bottom who got to hear Julie's screams and see her face when she finally came out down below. Glenn and I cheered when we saw the white towel of the crash detection system move, signifying that she had safely made it down...or at the very least, Emily had pull the rope thinking that if Julie was stuck, Glenn would be able to "help" her down.

We all seemed to have a lot of fun over the 4-day visit, and all learned a thing or two about each other, as we usually do on these family get-togethers. Julie learned that Wyoming hot springs smell absolutely horrible. Emily learned how to drive in the winter without the aid of windshield wipers. Glenn learned that weight limits for waterslides are not necessarily accurate, and I learned that no matter how much fun I think it is, pulling into Sheridan with a gas tank as close to empty as possible after a snowy drive over the mountains is not fun for anyone but me.

If anyone else is interested in visiting, let us know!

First big snow of the season...I heard 24" at 12,000 ft. It melted about 3 days later...

Julie, Emily, and Glenn checking out the new stream improvements in the park.

Tensleep Canyon on the way to Thermopolis...although you couldn't see the mountains, there was still plenty to see...sorry, no pictures of the hot springs...

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Summer 2008 in Retrospect

Grandma Betzler passed away in July after a long struggle with alzheimers, and ultimately an infection that she fought for several weeks before leaving us for heaven. I haven't lived in MN for several years, so I wasn't there for the toughest, last years of life, but at the funeral there were many wonderful stories shared about all the best years of grandma's life. The picture below should expand if you click on it, Bjorn, I was mostly thinking you could use some of the memories of grandma's life over in Africa...she would be so proud of you over there!

The funeral service was really a celebration of grandma's very full and very long life which was defined by her love and encouragement for everyone she was a family-reunion of sorts, and we had a lot of fun remembering grandma during her more vibrant years prior to the more difficult years of advanced alzheimers. Her feisty spirit and honest reflections on life are truly missed and remembered by all of us. Her strong faith in Christ was something that she lived out daily, and her atttitude was truly worth emulating. We love you and miss you grandma, but with all the memories that you created with us, and all the time that you spent with us, we're are blessed by your life!

Emily ran an 18-miler down the Tongue River...I rode my bike the last 5 miles with her to tell her exactly how far she had left...I won't be doing that again anytime soon, apparently runners don't like to know how much farther they have to go every minute...she did great though, and all of her training paid off!
Emily worked this summer managing the icecream shack across the creek fro our house...I don't think that I have ever been sick of icecream in my entire life, but this year, with 6.4 waffle cones (4 scoops) per week, I actually did get sick of icecream...unbelievable.

We did several trips to the mountains this summer, had some great hiking, fishing, and star-gazing. The pic above is on the north-end of the Cloud Peak Wilderness, with Blacktooth (13k+) in the background, with Jed and Aimee Kirklund, who are some good friends that were married this summer! Our other great friends, the Metcalfs had a beautiful baby girl, Abigail Rae, but we didn't have a picture of the entire family together yet, so we'll have to add a pic later, no offense Metcalfs (who am I kidding, no one but our parents look at this anyway!)

We had another great trip to the mountains with Emily's cousin Clint, and his buddy Sam. They came up to job shadow, and went home knowing that they did not want to be a City Planner in Buffalo WY. Their loss. We had a great time with them, this is a pic from Lost Twin Lakes on the southern-end of the Cloudpeak Wilderness. Superb fishing, good food, and lots of fun. Thanks for visiting guys!

Emily with a nice golden!

We were back at home in MN visiting twice this summer, Knife River is looking great, and in July the daisies were in full bloom...a very pretty place.

And, randomly, here is our house this morning...10-11-08 with 3 fresh inches of snow on the has come a long ways, and the final steps include putting in a new door (red) and new windows on the whole house...come visit, it is now nice inside and out!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Making up for lost time!

Early Spring in Sheridan!

Hello all dedicated blog readers...all zero of you. We have slacked off, enjoyed life, broken the digital camera, and started a master's program in education since we last added an entry, and all of those are very good excuses for why we have not touched the blog since Meg and Brian's visit back in October of 2007! It is now May 13, 2008, and it is high-time to make some new additions. Without any further ado!!!!!!

October 2007 through April 2008 were relatively uneventful for us Betzlers. We were able to witness our cousin Erik, and new cousin Kiki (no they were not related cousins) tie the knot in an awesome cermony back in MN. We had a blast hanging out with the wedding crew, as well as relatives and friends. The reception was a blast, with my highlight being a hip-hop dance with Grandma Sowles, some say the first bit of rug-cuttin' she's done that has ever been witnessed! If we can get a pic, I'd love to put one up at a later post. She was suprisingly light on her feet for just undergoing back surgery after a spill. I hope that when I'm in my late seventies I'll be able to do the same!


Our big event out this way was a vist from Linnea in the spring, April I believe. Brian was out of the country, so Linnea took the opportunity to come out for somewhat of a wintry weekend. The spring weather is always a gamble, in this case, it was 100% winter. We had fun up in the mountains though, doing some xc skiing and otter-sliding down some great inclines. Again, our digital camera broke back in November, so I'm not sure if we have any pics of her visit...we were having to much fun to document! We had a lot of nice down time as well, sitting around the fire trying to keep warm! Thanks again for coming out Linnea, next time you'll have to bring Brian along! If you have any pics email so I can put some online...thanks.


Our next visitors were Emily's parents, Glenn and Julie, back after successfully helping to tear apart and build the roof over the kitchen in Sept. of 2007. They came for a well-deserved vacation...the only heavy lifting Glenn did the entire trip was a couple of beers and a that's more like it! I guess he had to push the midieval steel-plated drift boat onto the trailer, but that shouldn't count as work.

Glenn and Julie enjoyed a great weather weekend, mild and sunny with just some limited rain. We got out on the Bighorn River for the maiden voyage of the yet-to-be-named boat...we spent 1/2 the day figuring out the wiring for the trailer, but to no avail. Seeing that this is Wyoming, and that we'd be back before dark, we lived on the wild side (feeding of the adrenaline) and took the boat up anyways...We pulled up to the boat entry, and slid/shoved/forced the boat off of the rusted rollers...I've given those rollers an entire can of WD-40 since that initial "slide". It was a huge bonus that the boat would have been somewhat awkward to have the boat sinking upon entry into the water...not exactly impressive to the inlaws.

We floated over the next 4 hours or so, with Glenn and Julie trying their hand at fly-fishing. Glenn had a number of hits, and managed to land a nice brown near the end of the float. The Bighorn can be a demanding and tempermental river, but they did very well for the conditions, and seeing that it was their first time doing the whole fly-fishing thing.


Mom and Dad came out the weekend after Emily's parents were here....we'll save that for the next one!