Monday, April 15, 2013

From Sunscreen to Snow Boots - Arches, day 1

Still basking in memory's warm glow of our sun-filled weekend to Arches, I couldn't help but feel amused as another part of my personality took pleasure in the sight of the giant snow flakes that graced the view out  our window this morning.

"Eliza, please find your snow boots." I heard myself say. The day prior, I had to beg her to slow down long enough to allow me to invade her little face with my two sunscreen covered palms.

Spring will come and at some point, hopefully soon, will decide to stay without further disruption from the harsh reach of Winter! Until then, we'll take our warm days with gratitude and appreciate our escape to pleasant Southern Utah that much more.

South Carolina provided Andrew and I with the opportunity to introduce our kids to the excitement of the beach. Our childhoods, however, we're spent exploring the unique and majestic landscape of Southern Utah. Countless vacations were enjoyed at various state/national parks with family friends. We hiked, went four wheeling, played night games, danced under the stars and talked around camp fires. For those unfamiliar with 'our story,' it was on one these trips that Andrew and I "met" on a hike and in a matter of what felt like minutes, fell in love.

Southern Utah holds a special place in our hearts. Up until this weekend, all of my memories associated with the grand red rock formations were strictly tied to my childhood/youth, as we had not yet had the chance to introduce our kids to its wonders. Yes, I'm probably over-glorifying it all, but there were a few times this weekend when I was really surprised to find myself in a van with three children, a pregnant belly and a map in my hands.

"How did I become the big grown up whose job it was to pour over the map and determine how we'd spend our morning?" I'm pretty used to being a Mom, I think. At least I thought I was until I was the one standing at the back of the van, filling up water bottles and doling out snacks while a troop of bouncing kids, claiming to belong to me, were pleading to start the first hike.

Friday afternoon, we arrived at Sand Dune Arch. In a matter of minutes we were reunited with Nana Marie, Birthday Boy Papa, my four siblings and their families. It was a GREAT way to begin our family vacation.

The kids get their first taste of red rock country.


A top of the arch, the boys show us what their made of.

Meanwhile, the ladies enjoyed sunning themselves.

Except this lady... 
Attached to her own personal baby cooker,
she welcomed the shade;
and the camping chair her thoughtful Mister had carried in for her.


 I want to remember the sight of a joyful Henry zooming about
as he took in his new surroundings.
He just ran and ran.
 Eliza bounced between socializing with cousins 
and getting lost in her sand creations.

Lottie was thrilled when Nana surprised us with cupcakes
to celebrate Papa's birthday.

Cousins, sand, dump trucks, cupcakes... definitely a winning combination


 It's not just our story anymore.
 And while I clearly remember when it was my turn to dig in the sand and aimlessly zoom about,
I have to say that this lot of ours has made growing up entirely worth it.


Dave and Lacey said...

Love it! What a fun family vacation. Loved the photos!

Teresa McCormack Flegal said...

Ali, you have a wonderful way with words. Isn't it amazing how quickly time flies. Memories we make as a family are priceless. Thanks for blogging. I look at yours more than once you know. No I will not disclose how many times I read them. Just one request, Can I please see the little lizard that Henry told me about?

*Jess* said...

It is nice to know that Utah isn't always just cold!