We have been packing in the SUMMER FUN! My sister Cathie and her six kids came to town for two weeks in July. My kids love their cousins so much and we try to capitalize on every moment they are here. I find it easier to plan outings and go do fun activities than to be at home cleaning up messes and trying to manage chaos. We kicked off the two week "stay-cation" at one of our very favorite places, my Uncle Gordon and Aunt Anna's Hide-Away. It never disappoints!!
We had planned to spend two days there for our family reunion. When none of the extended family was available to come on Friday I decided to take advantage of the reservation and invite a few of our friends. It was as fun as always!
Every six years my mom is in charge of the Romer Family Reunion. This was her year and we had a redneck theme at the redneck "pool" and waterslide. The Coombs ended up spending the night in the airport in Phonex, but we were so excited when they made it! My kids constantly ask when they will be able to see their cousins.
My Aunt Lola brought candy bars to the reunion and the kids lined up to tell her who they were so they could get a treat. Even the big kids (Shane) lined up.
Family reunions are so fun! I love my cousins, and I love watching my kids get to know their second cousins. Ali, Kate and Cali
I had a long list of activities to keep us busy. We packed it in!! We took our Second Annual trip to Bear Lake. It turned out awesome!! The kids really wanted to get the water tramp and we were able to accommodate after a string of good luck. The little ones enjoy the sandy beach and the bigger kids loved the tramp.
Caleb was even a good sport about the girls dumping Bear Lake ice water in his "hot tub".
We were lucky enough to take our friends kayaks. They were super fun. Johnny loved walking out and pulling people to shore.
I especially love this picture because these are the cousins that will go to first grade this year.
Ali, Kate and Dax
Another day, the first week we had a hotdog and marshmallow roast up Providence Canyon. The kids LOVED going for rides on my moms 4-Wheeler. Going up to the waterfall is always a fun ride!
Another evening we went to the Aquatic Center to a fun party thrown by my dentist and our good friend, Dave Gordon. It isn't every day that you get to hang out at the pool with Big Blue.
The Coombs went with the other side of the family for the weekend and we continued to fill every moment with family fun!! For the 24th of July we always help Josh's parents with a Navajo Taco Stand. It is a ton of work, but the kids enjoy it. Josh broke his back this year and hasn't been walking well ever sense. Josh's sister Christina's husband, Ross's, family was here from Scotland so it was awesome to see them!
I also had a dear college friend and roommate, Laura, come to town for Connecticut. It was so fun to see her and her family and have dinner at my friend Andrea's.
Things didn't go quite as well the second week that the Coombs were with us. First, our air conditioner quite working over the weekend. The end of July is not the time to loose the air conditioner! We were so grateful to get a new one up and running mid-week. In the mean time I got REALLY sick! I was in bed for a couple of days with body aches that were more intense than I've ever experienced before. I took two trips to instacare on Tuesday and my nephew, Dax, took one and found out that both bones in the calf area of his leg had been broken for 24 hours. Needless to say week two got off to a slow start, but we were able to fit in some fun!
We borrowed our neighbors bubble machine and giant slip and slide and spent an afternoon playing in our back yard.
Cara and Emi are 10 and 11 and still love to bath together. They were even playing my little ponies in the tub. I love that they are so helpful but still little girls.
While we were home managing the craziness Caleb and my nephew Colter went on a four day handcart trek to Martens cove and one day they did a 15 mile trek over Rocky Ridge. They left at 4:45 AM so the pictures are a little dark, but they had an incredible experience. It was hard and hot, but they felt the spirt, they loved the food, and they learned that they could do hard things.
Caleb is pictured here telling about the hand cart pioneer that he trekked in honor of, George Marshal. He was the 4-year-old son of his 5th great grandmother Sarah Goode Marshal Chadwick who with his 5 sisters and widowed mother entered the Salt Lake Vally via handcart in the first great handcart company.
The cousins just loved being together. There were plenty of beds and bedrooms, but multiple nights the kids slept like this. They were awesome about not waking each other up. (They know if they woke each other then they wouldn't be able to sleep together again) This is the six year olds and the three year olds. Ali, Katie, Lena, and John
Our time with the Coombs ended with a big bang, with the Preston Night Rodeo and parade. Friday night is the night we get tickets to the Rodeo and go all out. My mom even got the kids matching cloths. They were adorable. Caleb and Colter got home just in time to join us!
The Preston parade is a kids dream with tons of candy! Even though Friday was our big night we still hit the parade Thursday and Saturday as well.
At this moment I was watching all of the children. I followed them to go see the live stock. I was really proud of myself for getting this picture with no other adult help!
By the time the Coombs left on Sunday afternoon we were totally exhausted. There is some excitement though as we begin our 10 day "dog-sitting" experience fore the summer. Our neighbors have one of the best mannered, kids dog I've ever known. She LOVES the kids, she doesn't jump, nip or bark so we are going to enjoy having a dog for a couple of weeks. I'm hoping the experience satisfies my kids obsession with getting a dog. I think dog-sitting a well mannered dog is really the way to go.