Sunday, July 29, 2012

Island Park

In July we had a little reunion with the Streeter family.  My parents got a great house right on the lake in Island Park, ID and it was so perfect.  We had the greatest time.  There was a nice porch, a nice dock, a fire pit, and a huge house with lots of fun things to do inside too.

 There was a paddle boat and a kayak... I am pretty sure Kaci was the only one to brave the kayak and she did it with all 3 of the 6 year old boys.

 My brother gave some great tube rides.
 Toby and Brighton always wanted to go opposite speeds.
 Breckin was the boat boss and took his job very seriously.
 And Heath was the boat driver (on one of the boats).
 Jacob LOVED the tube and LOVED to ride crazy... Jared was a good riding partner for him.
 We even got the Grandma and Grandpa on the tube.
 Grandma brought lots of books to read to the grandkids.
 We even had one night that we made personal pizzas.
 One late night Travis proved to be a master crawdad catcher with his bare hands and no bate.
So we cooked them up.... this is what Kaci thought of them (in her defense there is some gnarly green stuff in there).

 I was in heaven being able to just put on a ski and get out there whenever there was a calm moment on the lake.
 And Jared got SO much better in the time we were there, he can really ski slalom now.
 Even my Mom,
 and my Dad skied.
 Tyler got up on skis for the first time.
 So did Toby.
 And Breckin.
 And Claire was brave and tried, she was so close and I am pretty sure if we didn't have a little boat problem the first time she would have been up.
 This is my brother's sweet family.
 There was a lot of cousin time at the cabin and my kids ate it all up.
 Jacob even learned to ride without training wheels while we were there.
 My Grandma Pat came for a day and it was so good to see her and for her to see the kids (She hates having her picture taken... this is the best I got with the wigglers next to her).

 Breckin and Brighton had a preferred method for warming up.
 We got a family picture while we were there (pretty good for a tripod and a timer).
 Grandma and Grandpa with the 3 youngest Grandkids.
 With all the grandkids.
 I swear, we do all like each other, even if we do stand feet apart for pictures.
 I love this picture of my sweet parents.... Thanks to them for a great week together!
 The cousins had the greatest time together.
 We even fit in time for glow sticks and marshallow roasting.
 And figures that the morning we packed up to leave the lake was like glass!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

In between the family reunions

With all the family reunions happening throughout the summer, we found a little under 24 hours (non-driving, at least... we've had lots of family-only travel time!) in between Jackson Hole and Island Park for just our family, so we went to the Walters Together Nest, my mom's family little cabin on the Snake River in Island Park, near Mack's Inn.  It's the first time since Dani and I were married over 8 years ago that we've stayed there.

We didn't get off to a great start as Liam got sick in the car on the way to the cabin and needed a bath.  Luckily for us, there's a perfect bath for a little guy!

Then it continued as the first night wasn't great - Kate decided she didn't want to sleep over night - she woke up around 12:30 and didn't go back to sleep until after 2:30 am!  All the while, Dani was feeling ill.  It was a rough night!  But in the morning, everyone felt better!

We spent some time sitting by the river.  It is a calm, slow-moving river and it was nice to have some time with just our family.

Kiddos had a lot of fun playing battleship.  

One exchange I heard... Jacob: "I won."  Claire: "No, the game isn't over."  Jacob: "No, I Won!"  Claire: "The game isn't over!"  No, I'm guessing "I1!"  Ha!

Kiddos liked playing in the river.  They could walk a little ways out.  I forgot how cold that river is!

In the morning, I got the canoe out (it's heavy, by the way!) and took kiddos for a ride.  We went around the island across from the cabin and found out just how shallow the river is on the other side as we bottomed out a few times!

The sunset over the Snake River was beautiful!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Walters Family Reunion

This was the year for the Walters Family Reunion.  It took place in Jackson Hole, WY with Jared's mom's side of the family.  Between grandparents, kids, grandkids, and great grandkids with all the current or future spouses, there were over 90 people who came to the reunion.  We had a house that was the activities center and condos for all the families.

First, the drive.  We split up our trip to Jackson Hole into two days, traveling first to La Grande, OR.  Kate and Liam did pretty well throughout the whole vacation.

Liam sometimes would fall asleep mid-bottle.

Overall, we traveled 34 hours and 1900 miles.  The kids all being asleep at the same time happened exactly once... for 10 minutes until Jacob and Claire's heads hit each other and woke Claire up.  It was pretty funny/sad to watch Jacob and Claire's heads bobbing back and forth.

The first day, we went on a hike up to the top of Snow King mountain.  It was about a 2 mile hike ascending about 1,600 feet.

There were a lot of little people on the hike - I believe there were 30 great grandkids 6 or under!  One person we passed commented that it looked like an ant farm!  It was a pretty tiring hike.

Liam had a fun time on the hike - he eventually fell asleep for a few minutes, but he was so excited to be hiking that he just talked and talked.

Jacob and Claire at the top.

After reaching the top, we took the chairlift down.  Liam and Kate seemed to like it.  Claire rode down with my aunt Kalle.  According to Kalle, they really struck it off as they talked the entire way down the lift.

We took the kids swimming one day.  Kate and Liam both enjoyed swimming.  Liam would sit on the side of the pool and dive toward me.

We went back to the church Jacob and Claire were blessed at.  We showed up with a big group right at 9:30, like we planned and opened up the curtains to the gym where there were more chairs set up... only to learn that church started at 9:00!

Dani and I got to go mountain biking.

Jackson Hole Resort has an awesome group of mountain bike trails with banked turns, jumps, and fun wooden structures.

I did a few extra rides with some of my cousins after Dani left.  It started raining, and this is the result!

We did a chuckwagon dinner where we rode 2 miles in a horse-pulled wagon to a little area where we were treated to dinner and a show.

Jacob turned into a big daddy's boy on the trip - if I was in eyesight, he wanted to be held by me.

Jacob and his cute toothless grin!

On the way back, Jacob got to drive the chuckwagon!  Our wagon driver memorized all our names and 1 thing about ourselves of our choosing.  Our group was Jacob "the talker," Claire "the reader," Dani "the mother of twins," Jared "the jungle gym," Kate "the crazy," and Liam "the eater."

Claire got a turn driving the covered wagon.

 We got to see a western shootout in Jackson.  Jacob wasn't feeling well, so he didn't get to see it.  I'm curious to know what kind of questions he would've asked!  Jacob and Claire got to stand in front of the antler arches.

We also went swimming at the Jackson Hole rec center, played at the alpine slides, and played family games, including freeing candy from the packing tape great ball of candy.  It was fun to see family, including my granny and grandpa.  We love Jackson Hole!