At the very end of June, we packed ourselves, our four children, suitcases full of necessities, electronic devices, and tons of snacks into our mini-van and hit the road. Exactly 23 hours later, after only stopping 5 times (and only stopping long enough to fill up with gas and let everyone use the restroom), we pulled into my parents' driveway in Utah! Even though the kids did waaaay better than we could have anticipated, and even though we were able to travel without incident, and even though we probably saved thousands of dollars over buying plane tickets for the entire family, I'm still not sure I would recommend traveling like that to anyone. I say that now, but I'm sure in a few years I'll get the itch to take the whole family to Utah again, and we'll travel the exact same way.
We were able to spend nearly two weeks in Utah, visiting my family and having a fantastic time! Here are some of the reasons why we loved our trip:
This hike to Battle Creek Falls was everything I wanted it to be: a hike in the mountains, that even Krew could do himself, with the reward of a waterfall at the end.
Everly and her cousin Jack are very close in age, and it was adorable to watch them interact. Sometimes they liked each other, other times, not so much.
Our day exploring Cascade Springs, off-roading in the mini-van, and a picnic lunch in Provo Canyon was perfect.
No trip to Utah would be complete without a fun, loud trip to Rocky Mountain Raceway. It did not disappoint.
Not having this guy leave to go to work for two whole weeks felt like winning the lottery! He should do that more often.
We haven't taken our kids miniature golfing in years. It was fun (if not a tad crazy) to watch them try to play.
Everly got a hole-in-one on almost every hole. She wasn't going to waste her time with that silly club thing, when she could just drop the ball straight in.
The Provo City Center temple is more gorgeous in person than I could have imagined.
Of course, we had to make a trip to the Disney Store. I think Everly likes this Minnie Mouse.
I always forget how delicious warm, fresh, Krispy Kreme donuts are. Then I eat one again, and I remember.
The Fourth of July in Utah was probably the best day of our trip. We had amazing seats to the Provo Freedom Festival parade, aka the best parade ever. We went swimming in my parents' neighbors' amazing pool, we had a BBQ, took a nap, watched an amazing fireworks display that my parents' neighbor does-on their street, then just as that was ending, we headed to the backyard to watch the city fireworks display as well. Couldn't have asked for a better day!
We got to swim in my parents' neighbors' pool. Everly made a cute little friend there.
Bart got to spend some quality time with himself on the golf course!
Our day in Salt Lake City included a trip to Tracy Aviary, or as Krew likes to call it, the bird zoo. He has been obsessed with birds for over a year now, and of course he loved the aviary. He didn't love when the large birds flew right over his head during the show, but he tried to be brave because he didn't want to miss anything.
Temple Square gets me every time. (Some day we should hire a professional photographer to take our pictures in front of the temple, because several times this trip we asked strangers to take our pictures for us and they turned out wonky. Oh well.)
Pretend this is a great picture of all my smiling, beautiful children in front of the Christus, okay?
Our family watched more NBA basketball this spring than Bart and I have for the past 10 years, combined. It was so fun for the boys to get so into it and to watch games together as a family. So, it was super fun to go to a Jazz summer league game together. I tried to pretend it didn't hurt my feelings when they all said that they didn't like the Jazz.
I love tin foil dinners in the canyon with my family. Like, love them!