Tuesday, November 22, 2016

July-August 2016: Family Vacation.

Last summer, the kids and I successfully completed our road trip to North Carolina. So this year when we were planning on driving the same distance but to Utah and my dad offered to drive with us, I told him no thanks; we would be fine on our own. Well, he did come with us, and turns out it was a really, really good thing he did. Not only did we run out of gas in the middle of West Texas, but my phone died and refused to turn on as we entered New Mexico and hundreds of miles of nothingness. I would have totally freaked out without a phone and the use of google maps by myself with the kids!! It would have been really, really bad. So we're glad my dad came.

The plan was to fill up with gas right before we left, and I forgot. I was driving, and when I realized we were going to run out, we were about 20 miles from gas stations in either direction. We kept going/coasting until we were totally out, and were able to coast right into the shade of the only tree right off the road. I was lacing up my tennis shoes to run a few miles down to the gas station when the nicest people in the world stopped and drove me down!

There are few pictures of the road trip/the first couple of days of our trip due to the broken phone. The kids did really well in the car, and I tried not to go nuts during the miles and miles of nothingness. We stopped at a really cool Aztec Indians ruins place in Aztec, New Mexico. We did the trip in two days, arriving at my sister Reagan's new house. We hung out at Reagan's and at her pool, spent a really fun day at the This is the Place Heritage Park, went ice skating, hiked the Y and hung out at BYU campus (Creamery ice cream is the best), and went to the Spanish Fork Rodeo.

Spent a day downtown Salt Lake on beautiful Temple Square, touring the conference center, etc. At one point the girls and I were super tired and took a break in a grassy area right in front of the temple. I gave the girls some coins and told them to pretend they were families, and I laid down for a nap. Sometimes these girls and their imaginations are the best.

Got together with some good friends from the BYU days; so fun!!

Found this on my phone...the boys had created a tiny Parcheesi bracket for a family tournament. Everett accidentally dropped it in the toilet and needed to take a picture of it to re-create it before it got flushed. Nice. Also, Carson got a little frustrated and disqualified some girls when they got silly and started flicking pieces around the board during their game.

Cute Mara watching her Pappy work.

Sunday pictures in Layton, Utah. We said goodbye to my family and headed North a bit to spend time with Rick's parents and siblings.

Went for some really, really nice runs in Utah! Summers in the West are just the best.

Temple square tour with the Ottos. Our tour guide happened to be Cambodian, so
Rick got to practice some Khmer!

Lake day!

Bountiful Temple, and Cafe Rio!!

Uncle Rick gives physicals.
We had lots of fun at Jeanel's house swimming, playing in her awesome backyard, etc. The kids got tattoos one day from a friend, and played baseball at a nearby park another day. (Where Isla fell asleep on me.)

We had to extend our Utah trip just one more day to do Provo again and see some friends and eat Creamery ice cream again!

Then it was time to drive back! We sent Rick on a plane, and the kids and I took a much more scenic route home via the homes of my BYU roommates. First stop was Jen's in Colorado Springs, and then we caravanned on to Britney's house in Lubbock, Texas. We held our annual reunion there for a couple of days (always the best time!) and then finally drove the last stretch home.

Road trips are exhausting, but so so worth it!!