Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Road Trip, Day 4

Well, the reunion starts in earnest today (It's important to be Earnest). We have a full few days, what with playing games and swimming and hiking and playing the Pyper People game and having the talent show. Oh yeah, and eating. That's VERY important.

So first Adam and Brian set up a game of Cricket.
Wild and crazy times, and I'm truly amazed that no one got hurt.

Here's a little row of cousins...

Here's Spencer loving on Mandy....again....

These two monkeys CRACK me up.
They are SO AWESOME.
And they pee more than any toddlers I've EVER known.

For example....

Here's the water fight that just sort of....happened....

And Alex SERIOUSLY asked for this.
No really, he asked Uncle Dennis to dump
all that cold water
right on his head.

Spencer peeing....again....

OK, here's the relay race.
Each family had to come up with one part of the race.
Here's our part...everyone had to dress up
in the outfits I (and DI) provided,
then pose for a photo.
Here's Kate putting on the ritz!!

I personally LOVED the green silk Chinese smoking jacket
with faded shoulders.

The pink fuzzy hat was a popular choice of headwear...
Dennis looked especially nice in the double-knit polyester
flowered gown.
With the turquoise blue hand-knit vest.
Lookin' good, Babe!!
Love the red velveteen hat.

In the spirit of friendly family competition
(aka winning at all costs)
Everyone helps me dress
fastser than my opponent.
(Sorry Lainie!!)
I preferred the purple "Precious"
(embroidered in pink satin thread across the front)
Santa Cap.

Meanwhile, in the nearby bushes....

Now it's time for the Pyper People Trivia Game.
Here we are learning which Pyper Person said,
"Who put dirt on the floor? I thought
it was brownie crumbs, and I ate it!!"
(That would be Isaac....)
Which Pyper Person said,
"Mom, I need a snack."
Mom: "What would you like?
Would you like some fruit
or some toast?"
Pyper Person: "Mom! That's not the point.
The point is, I need chocolate!!"
(Kelly, age 5!!)
Thus ends the fourth day of our vacation. Tomorrow, we will hike the Trail of Ten Falls (yes, all 35 of us, including two pregnant ladies...) And then....the TALENT SHOW. Stay won't want to miss the Dancing Queen.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Road Trip, Day 3

Day 3--We are at Silver Falls State Park in Oregon. This is the family reunion of my parents and siblings. This is not the family reunion that you attend where you really don't know anyone and it's kind of boring and not very fun. This is NOT that family reunion. We were sad that Mom and Dad didn't make it home from their mission in time for this reunion, and that Vaughn and Tami were too far away to come, and that Paul has a summer job in far-away Alaska. We missed those guys. A lot. But somehow, in spite of the missing, we managed to have a little fun. Well, that's a little white lie...we managed to have a LOT of fun.

Matt and James, Kendall, Liam, Dennis, Gareth, Mark and Wade.
Hangin' out at the playground. The best way to start the day!
Spencer and Amanda.
These two were pretty much inseparable.
Even when nature the bushes....

We took a little jaunt over to the beach.
When you have lived in Florida for many years, you have certain beach expectations. Now, I understand the difference between Oregon beaches and Florida beaches, but it's JULY for Pete's Sake!! (What I mean to say is that it was FREEZING and WINDY...yes, it was also beautiful. But the sand whipping my legs and my hair in my eyes and mouth and nose made it kinda hard to enjoy the view).

Wade, on the other hand, managed to find some priceless treasures.
I refused to let him bring this guy home, though.

Later that evening, Matt chased his dinner with a little milk...

And Wade cuddled Jana for a while.
Unfortunately, when he was done cuddling, he put her back in her stroller.
He neglected to buckle her in.
She leaped out, face first into the dirt.
She looks good with a big, bruised goose egg on her forehead.
(Sorry, Mel and Lee!!)

For evening entertainment, back in our cabin....

Leave it to my little guys to find the fun in any situation...

Plus their little bums are so....little!!!

And it seems to me that Wade's legs are
getting REALLY long.

So yeah, it was a good day. Tomorrow we are having the (in)famous relay race, (you know, means MORE than famous...) and then we'll play the Pyper People Trivia Game. It will be so exciting to find out "Which Pyper Person Said..." For example, which Pyper Person, when being told the family was going hiking with some friends said, "But I wanted to do something MODERN!" (That would be Paul). Or how about this one--Which Pyper Person, when Dad jumped out and startled her, said, "Dad! You scared me out of the crap!" (That was Charly, I think). Here's a favorite... Which Pyper Person, when seeing the transgender Mayor (dressed as a woman) coming down the street said, "Oh, man. He's got his boobs on!" Hooo-eee, that makes me laugh!! (Oh, and it was Alyse who came up with that gem).

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Road Trip, Day 2

Day 2--We drove through the Columbia River Gorge in Oregon. Stunningly beautiful. Wade loved it because he loves fishing, and fish, and anything that has anything to do with fish. He was in little fisherboy heaven all day. In fact, we were all pretty much in heaven all day.

Here we are at the Columbia River Gorge Exploration Center.
Dennis is exploring and making a Fish Lifecycle
We were ready to go long before he was.
A little further down the road, we stopped at
The Dalles Dam.
BIG water. Made me nervous.
The boys LOVED it.
And it WAS extremely gorgeous.
Mt. Hood, the Columbia River and my happy travelers.

Awesome self portrait.

A little further along, we stopped at
The Bridge of the Gods.
Who wouldn't stop for that??
P.S. The milkshakes at the local burger stand are
The Food of the Gods.
Now we came to the Bonneville Dam and Fish Hatchery.
Wade was so excited he couldn't even stand still for two seconds together.
Here are the kind of flowers we just don't grow in Utah.
Too bad.
Kate and I love flowers.
Here are Dennis, Wade, and Isaac looking with awe and wonder at Herman the 500 Pound Sturgeon. Quite amazing really. Even for those of us who don't really like fish. At all.

Another shot of Herman and my amazed children.

I just thought this picture was so cute.
Two little brothers.
Now the fun really started...
And we spent WAY more than 25 cents.

Isaac just stood there and stared.
I think if you click on the picture you can view it larger.
You should try it.
There's a LOT of fish in there.
Watching the feeding frenzy.

Wade wanted to get a little closer...

And Dennis got closer still.
He actually got his finger nibbled!

There was a place where you could go view the fish ladder, and Wade sat there for a very long time, watching for fish to swim by. Like I said, fisherboy's heaven.

We finally had to drag him away, with the promise of a waterfall.
He loves waterfalls.
But not as much as he loves fish.
We stopped at Multnomah Falls.
We've driven by before, and I've always wanted to stop,
but we never have.
Until today!!
(It was totally crowded, though.)
Me and Isaac at the lower view point.
You can hike up to the bridge that goes across, too.

This one is taken on the bridge.
It was such a pleasant day of driving and sight seeing. After we left the falls, we drove to Portland and then headed south to Silverton. We hung out with Kendall and Lainie and pestered them while they were trying to get ready to go, and stayed there long enough for Isaac to get attacked by some wasps. Six stings, and I restrained myself and didn't take any pictures. Too bad for you.
Tomorrow we'll be at Silver Falls State Park, and the Family Reunion (AKA The Wild Rumpus) will start. Wait until you see the relay race. It was AWESOME.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Road Trip, Day 1

I know you've all been DYING to hear all about the two week vacation. It's taken me two weeks to get my feet back under me, so you've just had to wait. And wait. And wait. And you just can't WAIT any more, right? I know, I'm right. And I don't want to overwhelm you (or me) with another lengthy post. So I'll just give you lots of short, little photogenic posts.

So, Day 1. We get ready to go. We leave the car doors open for hours with the packing and the sorting and the getting ready. And we are ready to go and the battery is STONE dead. We jump the car with the other car and drive to AutoZone and buy a new battery. Off to a good start!

My trusty husband taking care of business!

Proof that I'm rolling with it. I'm OK with a dead battery.

Peace and quiet in the car.

Enjoying the southern Idaho scenery.

By the time we got to Oregon, the peace and quiet was running out.
End of Day 1. Pretty exciting.
Wait for it. Tomorrow I'll post about the Columbia River Gorge.
Worth it, I promise.