We had a successful flight, even though Aaron wasn't there to tag team. I kept thinking to myself, this is one of the last flights where I'm gonna be flying with only two kids... this is EASY! I am bracing myself for all the changes that a new wee one will bring.
We got to bed in Alpine around 1:00a.m. (2a.m. texas time). I was thinking, "Surely the kids will sleep in..." Nope. They were up and at 'em by 6:30 a.m. Nice.
Knowing Cal's deep and abiding love for all things puzzles, Nana had some ready and waiting.
Of course we had to test out the pool that morning. We've been living to come swim in Nana & Papa's pool for months!!
::: Tillie also quickly remembered where Nana kept her coloring supplies and went to town. Notice how she does the letter "E". I love it.
::: Warning, there will be several pool posts. When your parents have a pool, this is where the fun is. We had several play dates the first portion of our trip, but then (as I mentioned before) life zooms into warp speed and suddenly there is no more time for planned fun, b/c we are cramming in so many things before we leave. Sorry to those of you who we talked about playing but never got the time!!
Our little niece, Gaige. Isn't she a dolly? This is Kirstin's baby girl and we all adore her. With that face, who wouldn't?!
Hanging out on the couch with Grandma. Good times.
::: There is this little holding pond/grassy park situation by my parents' house. It was such a beautiful night and the kids LOVED running around on the super soft Utah grass. Texas grass is LAME in comparison.
Auntie Lizzy was teaching the kiddos how to roll down a hill. It was funny to watch them try it out.
::: Once we were there for a few days, the kids remembered how to sleep. I love taking pictures of them sleeping (if you haven't guessed that by now). p.s. don't you love those quilts my mom made? me too. maybe she'll make some for us. :)
::: More pool time.
::: Sometimes when the kids would wake up super early, I'd pull out our DVD player and plug them into a movie so I could keep sleeping. Great parenting, I know. But, when your kids are waking up at 6:00 a.m., you are pregnant, not to mention exhausted... you might try this option too.
::: Tillie got kicked in the face by a swinging cousin. It was completely her fault (note to self, don't run in front of a swinging child) and she earned herself a big fat lip for a few days (the pictures don't do it justice). Luckily, I think she learned a pretty good lesson that day! I won't talk about the heart attack that my mother-in-law and I suffered watching the whole thing happen. Tillie was flung into the air upon being hit and it was a horrible sight.
::: We had the chance to pop up to Sandy to go see my darling Grandma Johnson. She is too good to us and we love spending time with her. Here we are chatting in her living room.
(I love seeing my mom in the mirror. Too cute.)
don't ask me what is going on with my face/bangs. But, Cal was shy, so I photo bombed the shot.
::: Let it be known, my parents have the PERFECT NAPPING COUCH. Seriously, it is the best. No pillows needed, soft cushy leather... it's so dreamy. Apparently, Calvin thought so too.
::: Goofin' off. Love what Cal's doing with his arm.
::: Finding Nana first thing in the morning. Or rather, I should say, WAKING UP Nana first thing in the morning.
::: My belly grew at exponential rates while in Utah. Awesome. Here I am at 28 weeks. Nice face, Melissa.
::: We opted to do an early morning dip the day my parents were hosting a wedding reception in our backyard (for a good family friend). This is Cal and me pre-dip.
Check out all the fun wedding decor they did! So many neighbors came over to help decorate the backyard and it turned out lovely.
Lizzy and I volunteered to help anchor the floating mongrams they had created... who knew that we'd almost DIE for the cause. You see, we had little hand weights tied to fishing line to anchor them, so they wouldn't float to the corners of the pool. Easy enough? No. See, you have to DELICATELY place them on the pool floor, b/c if you just drop them and the fishing line is too tight, AWWW SNAP! the monograms will break (they were made out of styrofoam). So, gently placing 8+lb weights in the deep end of the pool is a little scary and terrifying.
But, we mushed on and I think it turned out lovely.
I helped frost and rotate the cupcakes through the evening.
It was a LOVELY evening and I can't believe how magical my parent's backyard is. The perfect spot for a summer party, for sure.
::: The next day at church, this was my parents. :) I took these top secret photos on my phone and the caption I posted on instagram was this: "My parents love church. Super attentive today." As soon as my mom saw it, she busted up laughing. I think doing internet things during Sunday School is against the rules. But, my mom and me? We're rule breakers. (ha! couldn't be farther from the truth!)
::: Since Aaron was still in Texas (working to pay for our get-away. thanks, dear.) we communicated a lot via text messaging. One afternoon he asked if the kids were taking a nap yet.
This photo was my reply.
Nice. My expressive eyebrows say it all.
::: What the what?! One of my darling friends (whom I first met in San Antonio, then moved up to Washington) just HAPPENED to be in "Utah, We Love Thee" (she's the one who coined that phrase, by the way) at the SAME TIME as me. How did I discover such a thing? She ran into my in-laws at a restaurant AND I ran into her parents during the reception in my parents' backyard. CRAY-CRAY-CRAZY! "It's a small world, after all..."
Lucky for me, she was able to come and swim with her darling Coco. What a happy day.
::: Here Tillie is sporting a Cinderella/Rambo combo. Very nice, Til. Very nice.
::: Pool time again! We had found these blow up rocket ships with built in squirt guns at the local WALMART. Gotta love the Walmart. Cal felt large and in charge with such power.
Tillie, too, enjoyed the ride (and squirting everyone's faces).
Til also loved this baby turtle carrier. It was her preferred method of getting around in the pool (too bad it scared me to death, b/c she'd lean over so far that she'd tip face-forward several times).
It appears Papa enjoyed being in control of the rocket ship too. Nice one, dad. My friend Whitney summed up a funny fact---to the average public, my dad seems pretty straight laced most of the time. But if you "Just add water" he's a total goof off. She saw this first hand at Lake Powell all those years. And, yes, we ALL have to agree, my dad is a water-lovin'-jokey-jokester. Hence, the pool is the perfect addition to our home.
It was amazing once we discovered how much happier the kids were about jumping into the pool WITH goggles! (I used to be a huge goggle fan, so I can relate!) Here Cal is with Mary Alice, Lizzy's BFF.
He was on a roll once he got those puppies on!
The goggle aftermath. Too funny.
::: No Utah trip would be complete without a visit to our favorite, Zupas. That "Nuts about Berries" salad is a keeper. And funny enough, Tillie LOVES their tomato soup. She can consume her own bowl if given enough "dipping bread". She kills me.
::: In the pool again, but this time with DAD! he finally got to Utah! (and loved the rocket ship too.) Calvin also wanted to show off his skill of side-scaling the wall to the other little shallow spot.
::: Ahhh. Everything is better when Aaron is around. Tillie zonked out "plank" style on his lap one afternoon.
::: Picking raspberries in Grandma's backyard (Tillie's favorite!). Do you love this next shot of her, or what?!
This one is pretty great of Cavlin, too, I might add.
Aunty Melody helping him distinguish between the sweet ones and the "not quite ready" ones.
She's such a good sport to jump on the trampoline with them too! We love our aunts and uncles!!
::: Guess who made a surprise visit up from AZ? Unnnnncle ADAM and Aunt Kate! Boo yah! It was a total secret and we were really glad they made the trip! Aaron is especially happy. You can see his excitement in this next picture... and the next.
::: More swimming!! This time at a friend potluck. It was so fun to see so many great pals!
::: Alpine Splashpad. Represent.
The two greatest moms ever! And that darling baby Gaige is a keeper as well.
Love these sisters of mine.
::: More swimming! :) See, I told you, we were like fish. Calvin was much more brave than Tillie this trip. He loved learning to "float" on his back with Nana. I love his face in these next two shots.
Swimming with our favorite Wheadon family!! Such a treat that Whit, one of my very best friends, happened to be in town from back East! HOORAY! Cute Kel, on the far left was just days from delivering her second baby---amazing! It was such a fun swim part-ay and we can safely say that the Wheadon and Snyder families are matches made in heaven. We love those gals. Look at the happiness in this photo!
We all have the gift of gab. So great.
::: Lucky for us, Becca was able to fly into town TOO! Party central. So, this meant that our ENTIRE Snyder clan was reunited for a few days. Awesome. (Did I forget to mention that Emily had flown in from Boston a few days earlier?) It was wonderful.
What else was wonderful? This next shot of Becca taking her inaugural slide ride.
You should see the video I took. It's hilarious. Aaron took several photos in a row and this next photo was the highlight. Every time I see it, I chuckle.
Thank you, Becca.
::: No trip would be complete for Aaron if there wasn't some racquet ball-ing going on. He has LEGIT racquet-ballers in his family. Have I mentioned that my lovely mother-in-law won the Utah Senior Games GOLD MEDAL in the sport? And Adam was on BYU's team? The rest of them are pretty fierce competitors as well and they have a ball (pun intended) together. Enjoy the blurry action shots I pulled off of Aaron's phone.
::: Speaking of Aaron, here he is with his favorite gal-pal/girlfriend/love of his life. Duh, that would be me! I was just so happy he was around that I decided we needed to take some pictures. So we did just that. We have a system where I make HIM hold the camera because 1) he has longer arms, 2) it makes for a more flattering shot for me, being farther back---and let's be honest, these days, in my large pregnant state, I could use all the help I can get.
speaking of large and in charge... here she blows at 29? 30 weeks?
::: And one more photo to finish off the 1st half of our Utah summer vacay... Aaron and Adam reunited at the ping pong table. If you look closely at the table, you'll see Aaron's wedding ring. The goal of this particular game was to see if they could each hit the other's wedding ring. If they did, they'd earn a point. They were playing till someone reached 20 points. I think I pulled the plug at 7 points. (they are good, but not THAT good.)
They tried to entice Tyler that he needed to get married, then he could compete in this special game.
Also, Aaron told Adam that if he could get into a residency program near us in Texas, then he would buy a ping pong table. So, there you have it.
This concludes our first installment of the great Utah summer trip in the year of 2012.
remember, there's still time to enter the giveaway if you're interested.