Family Reunion Part 5: A Baptism and Family Pictures

July 30, 2014 on 9:33 am | In Uncategorized | By Cindy | No Comments | Add a comment

David and Amber’s son Jackson turned 8 in June and they decided to hold his baptism during the reunion in St. George.  Most of  Amber’s family was able to attend as well.  It was nice for the boys to see their cousin baptized.

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After the baptism, since we were all dressed up and all together, we did a family photo shoot.  The other Cindy did a good job posing people and her pictures are probably a lot more crisp than mine since she was using a nice camera and I just had my phone.  But as I don’t have copies of hers and I do of mine, that’s what you get.

All the grandkids with Grandpa Brent and Grandma Jeanne and Grandpa Dick …

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All the grandkids with their grandparents…

 

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Just the grandsons …

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Just the granddaughters …

 

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The photo bomb …

 

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The occasional moments pose …

 

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The true pose …

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The deciding which is the best side pose …

 

 

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The enough with all the pictures pose …

 

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The casual real life pose …

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The portrait for the wall pose …

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The primping for the picture pose …

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A bit more primping …

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The baby just pulled the photographer’s hair pose …

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The really nice siblings pose …

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And to sum it up, stolen from FaceBook … the everybody pose …

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Family Reunion Part 4: Just Hanging

July 29, 2014 on 10:10 am | In Uncategorized | By Cindy | No Comments | Add a comment

Of course, the real purpose of a family reunion is to hang out with your family.  We did a lot of that, too.

This vacation house had two pools, the big outdoor one and a smaller indoor one.  The boys enjoyed both!

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Because we were in St. George and because the temperature was around 100* each day, the boys didn’t spend as much time outside as they usually do.  We did go out early one morning and they did some exploring and playing.  There was a river at the back of the property and, while I trust my boys to stay away from a pool, exploring the long grass and rocks near the river shore seemed like too much of a temptation.  They weren’t allowed outside the pool area without me or Kevin.  They were only disgruntled by this rule once or twice.

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Some tiny frogs lived in the water feature in the yard …

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Even in St. George you can get chilly swimming in the pool.  You can also be annoyed when your parents say, “Go warm up in the sunshine.”  That wasn’t the solution Tommy wanted.

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There were ping pong and air hockey tournaments set up.  The Pendletons are a competitive group.

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Defeat is not often handled well.

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Snuggle time with the grandparents was important.

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With so many teenage boys around to watch the little kids, the adults slipped away one evening to a restaurant for dinner.  Bobby and his little cousin Kylie got to come along.

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Even though we still had Bobby along, it was nice to just visit with the grown-ups without any distractions or interruptions.

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We ate at the Black Bear Cafe.  The portions were HUGE.  Mine was plenty big and I got the light meal!

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One evening we played Family Feud.  Again, this family might be a little competitive.  And sometimes you just have to take pictures of your sister-in-law in her non-matching pajamas!

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Grandpa Dick was able to join us for the last half of the week.  We love Grandpa Dick.  He was up early each morning keeping me company while I cleaned the kitchen and got breakfast going.  I think the boys like hearing him laugh!

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Four generations…

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Legos were a big hit.  Cousin Jackson and the boys played really well together.

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Rusty loves his instruction manuals.

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There were a few quick lessons about using FamilySearch.org …

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And, of course, video games.  Sometimes the boys just need to veg.  At least it is easy to keep track of them – they put themselves in this position.  It wasn’t posed.

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There was also Bingo, card playing, games of Ticket to Ride, nerf gun fights, movie watching, and just sitting around visiting.

A lot of good times … just hanging out.

Family Reunion Part 3: Under the Sea

July 28, 2014 on 3:10 pm | In Uncategorized | By Cindy | No Comments | Add a comment

Another must do for our little family was to go to Tuacahn Theater.  Kevin and I have been to few plays there before and just love it – an outside theater with gorgeous red rocks as the backdrop – and wanted to share the fun with the boys.  We chose to go the night they were performing “The Little Mermaid.”

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It was going to be tough on Rusty and Tommy (Bobby stayed home in his aunts’ loving care).  The play wasn’t scheduled to start until 8:45 pm.   Since they are normally in bed and asleep before 8 … this was going to hurt.

Kevin is persistent and got Billy and Tommy to take a nap that afternoon.  Rusty refused.  We hoped for the best.

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We arrived in time to enjoy some of the cut-outs in the lobby area and to get some popcorn – for maximum viewing pleasure, of course.  The boys were very excited.  Well, Ricky wasn’t at first.  When we told him it was time to go to Tuacahn, he wasn’t happy.  He said he would rather stay and swim with his cousins.  As a mom, that’s a hard decision.  Take the unpleasant child to the activity that you KNOW he’ll adore, or leave him doing something that is also fun.  Actually, it wasn’t that hard … the tickets cost enough that we weren’t going to let him waste one!

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I’m not sure if the play had even started yet when I heard Ricky say, “This is WAY better than swimming!”

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The play was fabulous.  We were sitting on the 5th row and the special effects had the boys flinching and jumping throughout.  There were fireworks and explosions and a flooded stage and a water wall and flying through the air and actors on wheels.  It really was well done and the boys were mesmerized.

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Even our tired Rusty, who cuddled into Kevin’s lap because he was so exhausted, just couldn’t fall asleep – he didn’t want to miss anything.

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During intermission, Tommy looked up at the sky and said, “The sky is so black and beautiful!”    He was right.  There really is just something special about an outdoor theater.

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It was totally worth it.  Totally worth keeping the boys up until nearly 1 in the morning.  Totally worth the cost of admission.  Totally worth it.  The boys talked the whole way back to the vacation house about their favorite parts and quoted their favorite lines.  They all loved the wicked electric eels best!

Totally worth it.

Family Reunion Part 2: Zion National Park

July 27, 2014 on 6:28 pm | In Uncategorized | By Cindy | No Comments | Add a comment

One of the must do things on our list was to explore in Zion National Park.  Kevin and I had loved our last visit there and wanted to share that with the boys.

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We did three different trails.  The first one was the Archaeological Trail right near the visitor center.  It wasn’t much and the boys weren’t impressed.  I don’t think we even went all the way to the end.

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We did hike really close to a couple of deer though.  And the boys saw some lizards … they weren’t successful at catching them though.

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The boys enjoyed the bus ride through Zion almost as much as the hikes.  Not because they enjoyed what the tour guide was saying, but because they were riding a BUS!

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Bobby just liked the breaks from being in the back pack!

 

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There are oodles and oodles of rock formations to look at in Zions.  I was pointing one particular one out to Rusty.  I thought he might like it because it looked exactly like a beehive.  He looked at it and excitedly said, “It looks like a pancake!”

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Sometimes you had to wait for the next bus.  Sometimes taking selfies entertains better than rock formations.

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Sometimes taking selfies doesn’t work well when holding a baby.

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Sometimes you get really cute ones!

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We decided to get the boys all their own Camel Bak to carry on the hikes.  These are those backpacks with water pouches in them and you suck through a straw to get the water out.  Sort of a hands-free hydration.  We thought it would help the boys drink more.  We were right in regards to Rusty and Tommy.  I spent a lot of time telling them to take the straw out of their mouths.  And every chance we had, we had to refill their packs.  Of course, this also meant a lot of pit stops.

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At one stop, while I was gone, Kevin was bombarded by Italian men.  They were very impressed with Kevin’s wealth … five sons!  Kevin was a bit leery about them though and didn’t let them hold Bobby.

This same stop was where a group of Asians couldn’t get enough of Bobby.  One lady kept circling us and talking to us and you could tell that she really wanted to hold him but wasn’t brave enough to ask.  Again, we didn’t offer.

 

 

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The boys were sure that something cool lived in the hole of this tree.  They couldn’t see it, but they were sure it was there somewhere.

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The next hike definitely impressed the boys.  We went to the Lower Emerald Pool.  We’d have gone on to the Upper Emerald Pool, but that part of the trail was supposed to be steep and we were lugging Bobby around in a backpack.

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Remember all those pit stops I mentioned?  On our hike to the Emerald Pools, Rusty and Tommy had seriously full bladders.  Repeatedly.  Unfortunately, my boys are not trained to use nature as their restroom.  It took a lot of coaxing and a few tears, but they were able to do it.  Several times.  Much to my chagrin.  But at least there were no accidents.

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And Ricky and Billy got to do some exploring while we waited.

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Bobby weighs a lot in this back pack.  Just sayin’.

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At the lower pool there were a few “waterfalls.”  They were more like water mists coming down the mountain, but they were beautiful and fun to get wet in.  Because they were more of a mist, they sometimes didn’t drop much on you and then suddenly you were being poured on!  It was a lot of fun and we giggled as we got soaked.  It was such a hot day that it felt just delightful!

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Rusty liked trying to catch water in his mouth.

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Waiting for the next pouring to happen …

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After a nice lunch on the lawn by the Zion Lodge (and a good rest for Kevin’s back from carrying Bobby), Tommy looked over at Bobby’s bare feet and said, “Bobby is wearing tanned feet!”

That’s when we started on our final hike of the day.  It is the last hike in that part of the park … the hike that leads to the Narrows.

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Squirrels are very abundant on this trail and very much not afraid of people.  Although they might be a bit camera shy!

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Once you reach the end of that trail, you are at the Virgin River and the mouth of the Narrows Canyon.  We weren’t planning to go very far up the canyon, but you can’t resist the cool water and the fun of hiking in a river.

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The boys had seen others with hiking staffs, and so they found sticks throughout the day to use on the hikes.  They actually came in handy for them at the Narrows.

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We’d done some preliminary hiking to help prepare the boys for the park.  And it paid off.  They were fantastic hikers.  I don’t remember any whining, even when Tommy was so tired by the end of the day!

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It was just such a neat day together.   Everything that I was hoping for!

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As we hiked through the water down the canyon, we ran into some of the rest of the Pendleton family.  They had come into the park after us and gone a lot farther up the Narrows than we were going.  We saw them on their way back down.  That was a pleasant surprise!

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The only bad part of the day came at the very end.  We had done our hikes, been to every restroom in the park (it felt like), checked out the visitor’s center for souvenirs, and were about to get into the car to head back to the vacation house.  And, mean mom that I am, I wouldn’t let the boys bring their walking sticks back with them.  I made them leave the sticks there for some other little boys to use.  Oh, the tears.  Sigh.  But we did take a picture to remember them by.

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The restroom fun didn’t end just because we’d left the park.  The vacation house was only 45 minutes away and we stopped FIVE times to use the restroom.  All required stops, not just flukes.  Those two little boys were just swimming in water.  They’d empty their bladder and it would just fill right back up again.

If it hadn’t been such a good day and if it wasn’t so darn funny,  it might have bothered me.

But it was just a funny end to a really great day!

 

 

Rag Top

July 23, 2014 on 8:43 am | In Uncategorized | By Cindy | No Comments | Add a comment

I had Rusty with me while I was out doing some errands the other day.  He was looking out the window and watching cars go by.

A convertible drove by with its top down.

Rusty pointed it out to me and said,

“That car is either REALLY old or it’s had its top shot off!”

Okay.

There you go.

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