Tuesday, August 9, 2011

And We've Come to the End

Hooray! The end of our trip! Wait.... I mean, BOOO! I want to go back! I'm just glad I'm done blogging it after this. Sheesh, what a chore.

Anyway, guess what? Remember a couple of posts ago how I said half of my pictures got deleted and I had to re-arrange, etc. etc? Well, I forgot to put the next 3 pictures back in, and there is NO WAY I am going to go back to that post and trying it again. So, these are way out of order. But, on the 5th (the day I was cutting all of those boys' hair), my sweet sister Kaylie took Laylah and my cousin Maddie to ride at the barn. She actually took Laylah several times throughout our trip, but these are the only pictures I have. Laylah was, of course, in heaven. She really misses riding.Luna and Laylah

Cute girls!

Alrighty, I also have to add that near the end of our trip, I got really picture lazy. Which, of course, I now regret. I always do. Maybe someday I'll learn. Maybe not... but that means that this post is a whole lot of writing and not much to look at. At least the pictures I did take are cute! Moving on...

July 13th

We got home in the early afternoon from Bear Lake and had plans with our dear friends Dave and Tara to go over to their place for a barbeque. I ran to the grocery store to pick up corn on the cob and diapers (We ran out COMPLETELY that morning. Magnus was in a pull-up driving all the way home from the lake!). I was backing out of the stall and looking in my rear-view mirror when all of the sudden I heard a horrible screeeeeech! It was terrible. I immedietly stopped and looked out the window. Yup. Hit a pole. In my mom's car. I was so furious at myself. The only hilarious thing about the whole situation was that my mom had done the EXACT same thing in the EXACT same parking lot on the EXACT same pole about 15 years before. I was actually with her when she did it all those years ago. I felt like I was 16 again, with a spanking new driver's license in hand, when I had to go and tell my dad what I had done. Of course, he is always so patient and understanding and never gets upset. I have the best dad. Ever.

Well, we finally made it the our friend's house and the party began. The food was all amazing and we all stuffed oursleves to the max. The company was even better and I realized just how much I missed Dave and Tara and all of their darling little kiddos. You guys are the best, and we love ya!

I was a nerd and forgot my kid's swimsuits even though Tara had specifically told me to bring them. Luckily we have boys around the same age (if not the same size!) and Bear and Jonah were able to borrow. And also luckily, Tara has a couple good friends with girls my girl's age, so they were able to join in the backyard splash party as well.

We were all joking about Bear's tiny suit the whole night. Nice legs Bear!

Lance and Jonah showing off their skillllz. These boys are only a month and a half apart. Tara and I were pregnant the whole time together and our poor husbands really heard it (you know, the complaining and whining that is just the territory that comes along with pregnancy :) double time whenever we got together back in the day :)

I can hardly believe that in just 9 years we have 9 kids between the 4 of us.

Darling little Talya who loved me (tee hee) and let me dote on her all night. She is seriously to-die-for-adorable. She was only 5 months when we moved away and I threatened Tara I was going to steal her and take her away with me. I said it again this time. I almost snuck her into our car...

Oh boy. These two....

M and Dave and Tara's newest addition, Daxton, hung out all night inside. Daxton was sooooo sweet. I almost stole him too :)

Thanks for having us Dave and Tara! It was so great to see you all. We sure love and miss you.... now come and visit us, and we'll return the hospitality ;)

July 14th

On Thursday, we decided to use our bounceback passes and head on back to Lagoon. We didn't have enough spinning, twirling, twisting and heaving the first time. It was lots of fun. My brothers were able to join us this time, so our entire family was there minus only Don (Rachel's hubs) and Suzanne (work. booo).

Sweet baby Piper. I'm going to go ahead and steal her too while I'm in the Baby-Thieving Business.

Mmmm. Nothing better than Lagoon treats.

Just ask these guys.

So, after a crazy/fun day, we decided to be even crazier. My dare-devil, thrill-seeker child Laylah decided she really wanted to go on the Sky-Coaster. My dad had never been, so he volunteered to go with her. Kaylie and I decided we wanted to go as well, so we all paid for our tickets to go. If you don't know what the Sky-Coaster is, it's this super fun ride where you are put into a full-body harness and they clip you up to cables and then pull you up to the top arch, which is about 150 feet in the air. You pull the rip-cord and then you seriously fly through the air at about 80 MPH back and forth until you slow down and they pull you back down to the ground. It is FUN! I have been on it a handful of times. Kaylie had never been either, so she and I went together. We had SO much fun. I love that ride.

This girl wasn't even scared. She was all smiles when they got off and she loved it, of course. I'm not sure, but I think my dad was a little shaken up :)

Kaylie was about to pee her pants, but she was able to keep it in, haha. The two of us screaming together probably shattered a few people's window's within the vicinity. I have both of our rides on video. If I remember, I'll post them on another post. It's pretty funny :)

We played a few games on our way out and won some lovely souveniers (that will be going in the trash pretty soon here). Overall, it was SUCH a fun day. I loved spending it with my family.

July 15th

Today was a crazy busy day. My mom took Jonah and Laylah shopping for some gifts (Jonah's birthday gift and Laylah's baptism gift) Jonah came home with a nerf dartgun, a bow and arrow set, and some pokemon cards. He was thrilled. Laylah came home with a beautiful little silver CTR ring, and hasn't taken it off since! Kaylie took Daphne riding at the barn and Daphne couldn't stop talking about it. What wonderful grandparents and aunts my kids have, thanks mom and dad and Kaylie!

I ran errands half of the day getting ready for Laylah's baptism, which was the next morning. I also met up with some dear friends from my old ward. It was so great to see them . Of course, I forgot to take a picture. It was really fun to catch-up and hear about what everyone was up to. I love my old ward and miss them LOTS! Afterwards, the kids were able to play with some more of their old friends while my mom and I cleaned and beautified the house (we had brunch at her home after the baptism). Andy and I ran a few more errands that night and were also able to sneak off for a quick date after we got the kids to bed. We went to Simply Sushi and stuffed ourselves. Delicious. Afterwards, we headed to Leatherby's and got sundaes to-go (quick interruption-anyone who knows me AT ALL knows how much I love and adore Leatherby's. I had plans to go there many times while in Utah, and I just never made it. This was the ONE and ONLY time I got to go. It was AMAZING and DELICIOUS and I wanted to take home 100 more Black and White Sundae's with me. Along with some cheese fries and fry sauce. I wish.)

We headed back to my mom's afterward's. My brothers were meeting me there to practice the musical number they were singing for the baptism. Rachel was accompanying them. After they practiced a few times, Kaylie and I sung along with them for fun. I love to sing and don't do it nearly enough.

After that, we headed into the kitchen where I started preparing the food for the brunch the following day. My whole "original" (you know, my parents and siblings :) family (minus Suzanne, I don't think she knew about our impromptu party ;) was in there, talking, chatting, laughing, and preparing food. I don't even remember what we joked about or much of what was said. All I know is, I simply love my family, and we sure do have a great time together. We were up until 1 AM, and finally, everything was ready for our fabulous celebration the next day.

July 16th

Today was a very special day. My little girl, and oldest child, was baptized a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. It was amazing and wonderful. It deserves it's own post. It will be forthcoming...

After the fabulous brunch at my parents, Andy headed off to play basketball with his brother's and dad while I cleaned up the aftermath. That evening we had plans to celebrate my dad's 60th birthday (which was way back at the beginning of our trip in June) in style. We dropped off the kids at their fabulous Aunt Bree's and then we headed out to Carver's for an amazing dinner of steak and seafood, wonderful conversatoin and topped off with the perfection of a Glaus cake. My parents, all my siblings and their spouses (minus Don-darn that scout camp!) had a fabulous night (this is where a picture should be.... but of course, it's not). We went to the new Harry Potter movie after dinner and it was the perfect topping to a great evening. Happy 60th dad-you are the greatest and I LOVE you!

July 17th

Today was the day we were supposed to be heading home. We packed all morning after getting ready for church, and when it was time to go, we headed to Andy's brother's ward. Ryan and Sarah blessed their twins and we were so happy that we were able to be there for it. Ryan gave those sweet babies wonderful blessings. It was fun to be there with all of Andy's family and see all of the rows we took up together. After church, I ran home to my parents to finish packing while Andy took the kids over to his parents for the luncheon. After I finished, he came and picked me up. We could barely fit all of our luggage into his mom's Honda CR-V, and all of the seats were down! That's what you get with 7 people and a month long vacation :)

We headed over to his parent's house and were able to eat, visit, and chat with family and friends. It was wonderful. Unfortunately, my aunt called during it all and told me the flight we were supposed to be on that evening was jam-packed and there was no way we would make it on while flying stand-by. She told us it would just be better to change our flight to the next day and leave then. So we did it! I was a little excited to stay for another day, while at the same time I was disappointed, because I was just ready to go home and be back in my house. Oh well, nothing to be done about it. We spent the rest of the evenning playing games and chat chat chatting with family. Fun times. Of course, I didn't take any pictures though. Bummer.

Before we went back to my parents to spend one more night, Andy's parents gave Jonah his birthday gift. He was a little excited.

Thanks Grandma and Grandpa Collette!

July 18th and morning of the 19th

Today was a nice, relaxed, not-do-much day. We slept in because my sister Rachel had left to go home to Vegas the day before and my mom and dad were at work, so it was really quiet at my parents. It was just me and my family and Kaylie. Andy had conference calls and was working most of the morning, so I took advantage and completed my laundry so I wouldn't have any to do when we got home. I also had to run a couple errands. All to soon it was 3 o'clock and time to head to the airport. Andy's dad and my dad took us (we don't all fit into one car!) and Kaylie came along for the ride. We were quite a sight when we got to the airport with our 7 enormous bags of luggage, two carseats, a big stroller, and 4 carry-on's, not to mention all of the kids with their pillow pets and blankets (we took the red-eye through the night). We said good-bye (I nearly cried because of Kaylie and her sad puppy-dog eyes!) It was funny because later that week she and I were talking on the phone and she said she almost starting crying and was secretly hoping that we wouldn't make it onto our flight so we could stay just one more day! I secretly hoped that too-I sure miss that girl :)

Anyway, we finally made it to get checked-in and got rid of most of our baggage. Only a few carry-on's remained. When we got to our gate, the lady at the desk told us we didn't have a great chance of getting on. She said there were 6 seats available and 12 people on stand-by. Well, we needed all 6 of those seats! So we started hoping that people wouldn't show up.... and guess what? As they called the names of the people on stand-by who were ahead of us, no one showed. We were it, and we made it on! Woo-hoo.

Funny kids ready to go home

We made it to Longbeach quickly, ate dinner, and the kids watched a movie during our layover.

We got onto our last flight quickly, got the kids settled in, fed the baby, and they were all out for the flight.The flight was only half full, so all of the kids got their own row if they wanted and slept great.

I didn't sleep at all because I kept worrying that Magnus would roll off the seat onto the floor. By the time our flight got into DC, I was exhausted and feeling sick. We had to wake the kids (and sing Happy Birthday to Jonah!) and we headed to grab our luggage. We took the shuttle to our car and drove home. We were able to sleep for a few hours and then we unpacked a bit and celebrated Jonah's birthday later that day.

It was an amazing trip. Like I said, I can hardly believe all of the things we fit into it and I was so grateful to get to see all of the family and friends that we did. I love Utah and have missed it since being back in VA.

Now, I really need something, or rather, someone to look forward to (because that is basically how I survive living so far away from home!), so that means someone needs to come visit, and soon!! Come come, anyone is welcome!


Amber Kei said...

What a fun, completely packed trip!! I cannot believe all that you fit in. It's exhuasting...but I'm sure completely worth it and so much fun! I'm so glad I was able to see your cute kids. Maybe we'll be able to come out and visit you sometime...we talk about going back east every year. :) Good luck with school starting...I can hardly believe our summer is almost over!!

Rachel said...

My goodness! I am in awe of several things: your super cute family, all of the stuff you crammed into your trip, and how great you have done at blogging all of it!
I am sorry we weren't able to get together, but after seeing all the fun stuff you did, I would have been a bore comparatively! :)
I am glad you had a fun trip. I really do think you are amazing to do so much with your kiddos, I know it can't be as easy as you make it look!