Our summer vacation sounds a lot like a bad summer blockbuster. =) We left a couple of weeks ago and drove to Boise for a wedding. Back in January David and I set up my old college roommate from freshman year with David's cousin. Less than 5 months later, we were attending their wedding. That marks the first ever successful set-up in my book (out of many, many unsuccessful ones). The drive to Boise was lots of fun with 4 kids. It was a first roadtrip since the baby was born. I think we stopped every 50 miles to either feed someone, change a diaper, or for a roadside "pit stop" for Joseph. We made this whole trip without the help of a dvd player in the van. The kids got new coloring books instead and that worked well until they dropped the crayons on the floor.
Here's a picture of the rainbow we saw on the way to Boise.
We forgot our camera, so the only pictures we have are from my cell phone. I didn't take any photos of the wedding, so you'll have to look on facebook for those. =) We enjoyed spending time with David's cousins, the Reeds because all his cousins have lots of little children. Sarah loved meeting all those new "cousins", especially Abby.
After Boise, we drove down to SLC and stayed with my Grandma. Here she is holding baby David, who is wearing the blessing outfit that she knit for him.
On the way to Grandma's house, we passed this sign at the Utah state line. (It's new). Actually, we had to make another "pit stop" for Joseph and just happened to stop here, so I told Joseph he could pee in two states at once. Is that naughty of me?
The next day we visited David's grandma. Here she is holding our darling baby, who makes the "best" faces whenever I pull out a camera.
After visiting the grandmas, we went to Ashley's new house and stayed there for a week. It was our "home base". Benjamin is nearly 2 1/2, and he loved having his "cousin Sarah" and Joseph around to play with him all day. This is the only picture I got of all the kids (minus baby David) because this was the only time they all sat (relatively) still in the same place long enough to get a picture.
After a few days, Ashley and I said goodbye and left at 5am for Miami, Florida. There was bad weather in Miami, so our plane was diverted to Ft. Myers and we waited for 4 hours on the ground there before we got to land in Miami, then drive 2 hours to the Keys. We arrived at midnight. Baby David was an angel the whole trip. The next day we ate breakfast at noon and went snorkeling, then cleaned up and went to Whitney's wedding. It was supposed to be one of those "sunset on the beach" sort of weddings, but Whitney decided to move it up about 2 hours earlier so she could wear her dress longer. Wow, it was so hot out there on the beach in our wedding attire. Whitney had beads of sweat running down her back before the 10 minute ceremony was over. Once it cooled off a bit, we had a lovely wedding dinner on the beach with our family and Blake's (her new hubby). They served coconut ice cream with her wedding cake and it was amazing! I had two servings.
I didn't have my cell phone on this trip because I left it with David, so no pictures - sorry! The rest of the family took some though and Whitney's photographer snapped at least a thousand shots.
The next day we flew home (to Provo) with Dad, Sterling and Emma. Ashley and I decided that we'd had enough commercial flying. Ahhh...I love flying with Dad. No lines, security checks, annoying announcements over the intercom system, etc.
Little David was a sweet boy and very happy considering all the traveling we did that weekend. Emma took a picture of him flying in Grandpa's plane. Now all the kids have flown with Grandpa at least once. Joseph thinks that Grandpa's plane is just about the coolest thing ever. The family all came to the airport to pick us up. All the kids were still healthy and happy -- David did an awesome of job of holding down the fort while we were gone. I think it was the first time that Ashley left Benjamin overnight. David also told me that he learned a lot while I was gone and came to a new level of appreciation for and understanding of what I do everyday.
The next day was David's birthday (he's 30 now!!) and our baby's blessing day. It's official - his name is David, though his middle name is still not set. The birth certificate says "Jesse", but I don't know if that will stick. Sorry - no pictures of that either - I didn't take my phone to church.
But here's a shot of Grandpa wrestling with Joseph after church:
It reminds me of when he used to tickle us or play 'bear' when we were little.
We built a swingset in Ashley's backyard for the kids. David's brother-in-law Jody helped us for several hours. We couldn't have finished it without his help.
Day 1, 20 hours of "labor" and we're still not quite finished.
Day 2, three more hours of work, and it's finally finished...almost. =) It still needs to be staked down.
After this, we packed up and went to Jennifer's house where they babysat the kids while David and I went on a much-needed date.
The next morning was CHRISTMAS! Jennifer had 8 huge bags full of clothes for the girls, ranging in size from 2T up to size 8. We're set for 4 more years for Sarah. She gave us full wardrobes in every size (winter/ summer/ pj's / church clothes). It was awesome and really fun to go through all the clothes. Joseph even got a few pairs of pj's out of it.
Then we hit the road again and drove back to Boise - the halfway point - and stayed the night at our new cousin-in-law's parent's house. =) In the morning we got new tires, David spent his birthday money at Deseret Book, and we drove home to Lewiston.
Kathryn was really grumpy, so I bribed her with chocolate. It worked for a while. Today she took two naps just trying to catch up on all the lost sleep from the trip. I think we're all still recovering. It's good to be home again though.