Sunday, July 15, 2012

Vacation


I hated coming home from Utah.  It was the best vacation... We loved every minute of it.  I wanted to send someone else back to Alabama and pack up our stuff, just so I wouldn't have to disturb the peace and all the happiness that was going on.  Needless to say, I'm pretty sure I was drugged/forced into the car in the early morning hours almost two weeks ago.  Crazy that we have been home for almost two weeks already and I still am wishing I were there and not wanting to settle into the reality of being home, normal everyday life, and responsibilities.  I think I have thrown and cried a few tantrums along with my little boys about being back in Alabama.


When we made the decision to drive to Utah clear back last Winter, it was more of just a thought... I think it was more of a crazy thought.  Who in their right mind would want to drive 1910 miles ONE WAY with two little boys and a pregnant wife... (who all use the bathroom a 100 times a day. :)  Crazy or not we did it.  We left early morning (5am) on the 15th of June and drove all day long.  Day one our destination was Amarillo Texas.  We drove ALL day with a few stops and got there about 10pm.  It was a LONG day.  We kept our boys busy with all sorts of new toys and fun games.  They did amazing.  So much better than I ever thought they would.

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Amarillo by morning... :)  Texas sunrises are really pretty.  See those specs in the distance (windmills).  Ask Zenock about the windmills on our trip.  We saw LOTS of them.  JC gave Zenock a very political education on windmills during our drive.


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Our second day we drove to St George to spend a day with JC's grandparents.  After driving countless hours across the Indian reservations (most boring drive ever).  We stopped on the Navajo Bridge for a quick picture before getting to St George.

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I love this city.  One day JC and I WILL retire there. :)

Thanks Grandpa and Grandma Brey for letting us stay with you and visit.  We enjoyed every minute.  My little Kamden warmed right up and loved hanging out with Grandpa Brey. 

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We had fun showing our boys around town and a few sights.  My favorite will always be the temple.
The St George Temple holds so many many memories for me.  Not only is it a sacred holy place, it is one of the most special places near and dear to my heart.  I took countless walks to the temple with roommates and spent hours at the temple with My Michelle (as I lovingly refer to my favorite roommate and best friend in college).  We discussed our biggest fears, hopes, and dreams for the future.  We read our patriarchal blessings and tried to decipher what they meant and where we were headed.  (I still remember hers and boy oh boy was it amazing... she will have an amazing story to tell when we meet again. :)  After Michelle was killed it was where I went for solace, peace, and to cry/bawl my eyes out for hours on end.  It was where I tried to understand and make sense of life.  Late one night, sitting outside the visitors center with the Christus Statue glowing inside, it was where I made the decision  that JC was the guy of my dreams and the one I was supposed to marry.  It was where I decided it was time for me to leave St George, move home, and start a new chapter in my life.  The St George Temple is where my testimony grew more than any other... within the gates is where I felt at home, which happened to be at the time so very far away from home or so I thought 5 hours was far. :) 


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Our next stop was a family reunion with my Mom's family in Duck Creek Utah.  (Southeastern Utah... about an hour North of Zions.)  My brother lives about 15 minutes from the resort where we stayed and I have always loved driving through his "backyard."  It is so pretty!  I miss being able to escape to Mountains and hearing wind through the trees, birds singing, and feeling the coolness of the mountain air.  That sounds so corny, but they don't have Mountains in Alabama.

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We went on a little hike one day up to a waterfall with all my family.  Even my Grandad and Grandma went on the hike... (the reunion celebrated his upcoming 90th Birthday in August).  It was an easy hike for most, but a hike no less.  Seriously, how many 90 year old's can do that?  My Grandparents are awesome! :)

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A little story... :)  After the hike, JC, my boys, my Sister Emily and I headed down to Duck Creek to cool off.  After Emily safely crossed the little stream once, we thought it would be fun to take our boys across...

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Off we go... (see those bikers?  Pretty sure they were taking bets that the pregnant one falls in first).  We got to the middle and took a fun/sweet picture.  That's when it all went down hill...

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It doesn't look too bad in pictures, but holy moly.  I saved my child... sacrificing the rest of me. Bruises/Gashes/ripped toenails, my knees were black and blue for weeks... (I left those pictures out).  JC was safely taking pictures of the entire thing from the bridge.

After getting in the car and reviewing the whole thing on camera, Emily and I couldn't stop laughing for a week.  Funniest moment ever. :)

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We enjoyed great/gourmet food every day and loved hanging out with family and letting my kids run free and get as dirty as possible.  I've decided we are truly city people - I've never seen my kids so dirty in my life!  Scrubbing and soaking them in the bath tub each night did little to take away the dirt caked in the creases of their feet and hands.

My Kamden loves his "ballgames" and he would coerce anyone he could when we passed by the basketball court to "shoot" with him.  Grandpa was such a good guy and played with him for at least an hour.

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We had lots of fun different games and activities to do.  Zenock loved the four wheeler rides, JC got in some good basketball games, I loved the food, and Kamden loved just throwing dirt.  I can't stop laughing when I see the pictures of my brother Chad and I playing tetherball.  What made me think that I was even a contender?  I couldn't jump worth a dime and almost peed my pants laughing so hard.  Good times. :)

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There were lots of different animals for my kids to see.  Kamden loves anything little that moves... like this horn toad.  The next picture is a little blurry, but I seriously meant it about my kids being beyond dirty.

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My cute niece J and Kamden both had a few bumps and bruises on their heads and looked like orphan kids at the end of each day, but smiles say it all.  We had LOTS of fun.

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We drove up to Northern Utah at the end of our first week and got to spend more time with just my family.  We had planned on going to Bear Lake and a few other things, but it ended up none of us wanted to go.  We enjoyed just sitting, visiting, laughing until we cried, and eating good food.  We set up slipnslides and water games for the kids one day and of course by the end it was a full on every one for themselves water fight.

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We went to a Baseball game with JC's Dad and sister one night.  Kamden got a free sucker at the concession stand just for being so cute. :)

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We had a bbq with JC's family one day and got to have lots of fun on his brother in laws family slip n slide.  It was HUGE.  The kids had so much fun.  Even the adults had a good time racing.  I hung out on the side lines taking pictures... The thought of me going down made me think of Frosty the Snowman, "the fastest belly whopper around." :)  I thought Kamden would be scared, but he couldn't get enough and even when he was shaking and cold as could be he would get done and climb the hill again.

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Our trip to Utah was much needed and really relaxing... We had a great time visiting with friends and family.  We spent a day at City Creek in Salt Lake and spent most of our time just hanging out.

My brothers family just moved next door to my parents... They have four boys - 2 seven years olds and two 5 year olds.  It was HEAVEN for Zenock.  He would wake up in the morning and literally disappear with the boys on the farm.  We saw him for meal time and when it was time for bed, he would come in as dirty and worn out as could be.

He got to help haul hay and ride tractors with my Dad and seriously had a great time.  I'm sure he will remember it for a long long time. (And, yes, he is still in pj's in the pictures below.  He couldn't waste a minute getting dressed and had to get outside with the boys... I caught him most of the time before he headed out and made sure he was dressed.)

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The grandkids found this cute little kitty on the farm right after we arrived.  Zenock named him "Hopper" and the name stuck.  He had been well loved and cared for by the time we left.

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My brother taught Zenock the term of "Redneck swimming pool."   They had just moved from Southern Utah after being a Manager at a million dollar Ranch for the last five years... where swimming pools and going to the store to buy one don't happen everyday.  They made due with what was handy at the ranch.  So they had a blast swimming in the horse trough one afternoon.

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My favorite moment was after we returned home and I was doing laundry... When I started checking Zenock's pockets on his jeans, I found all sorts of treasures from the farm.  Priceless. :)

Thanks Family for making it such a fun memorable trip!

I think it is safe to say, my kids are quite the travelers and have been to, through, and lived in more states than any other kid possible.  In the last few months our family has visited, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, and Illinois.  Let's add in JC's Germany, Saudi Arabia, and England and I would say we are World Class Travelers. :)  I see many more road trips in our future.  We all agreed Wyoming was the most boring and least favorite state to drive through.  I have even more respect and love for my Pioneer Ancestors who saw where they were and didn't turn around.  AND, in case you were wondering, our favorite state is still hands down, Tennessee.  It is one of the greenest and prettiest states to drive through.


1 comment:

Toree said...

I Loved reading about your love for St. George! I completely agree! Taylor was talking about leaving the other day when we are done with school and I seriously was almost in tears at just the thought of leaving!