Monday, April 21, 2008

St. George and Good Friends

I had promised all of you a blog post about what I did to lose 39 pounds in 9 months (for those of you who don't think 39 pounds in 9 months is that big of a deal, go have 4 children, nurse them all, and then we can have a discussion about what a big deal is, okay? Hoo-ee! Yeah, I'm not bitter, just sayin'.). I promised you secrets and successes, food and failures. I know I did. And I'm going to keep my promise. But there's only one problem.

I'm not sharing it now. Doh!

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm going to (in fact, I probably will do it right after this post. Or early tomorrow morning. Because I know how much you love early morning blog posts!), but there's just one thing I have to blog about first. My trip to St. George! It was splendiferous! Wonderful! And I have pictures!
So, please forgive me for One, not blogging about weight stuff, and Two, skipping Spotlight Sunday one more time. I promise it won't be the last time I do something like this. Because I'm kind of flaky. And lazy. And a tad selfish on my own blog. I know, it's weird.

Okay, here's a re-cap of our weekend, but first! A history lesson (ooh! I love history!):
We have these amazing, amazing friends. We'll call them the "C" family (for anonymity's sake), and the couple is "A" and "B" (no, I'm not making this up). Okay, so Brandon and I met A and B in college. They were newlyweds like us and we enjoyed our fun, although limited, association with them. Then we had #1. 3 weeks later they had a baby girl. Then, about 2 years later, they had a baby boy. 3 weeks after their boy was born, we had #2. 18 months after that we had a #3. 10 months after our #3, they had a girl. Two years later, we had #4. Six months after that, they had a girl. And there you have us! 4 kids each, all very close to the same ages.
It gets better.
We bought a house in Provo when #1 was a baby. Two years later, we run into the C family at church. Turns out A's brother was leaving on a mission from our ward. What? We moved into her ward?! How cool!
It gets better.
We soon find out that we bought B's house. The home he was raised in. His house.
Freaky, eh?
So, we reconnected those many years ago. Time and distance, moves and jobs, phone calls and double dates, etc. occurred and we've stayed really close friends. In fact, they are a major portion of our inspiration for the weight loss, you know. "A" lost 40 pounds and "B" lost 95! They now live in the SLC valley. Hooray! We moved back to Utah Valley (same house, for those who don't read my blogs often enough, and yes, that would still be B's previous home). Hooray! We can play. So, there's the history.
Anyways, the C family invited us down to St. George --they had some free hotel stays (long story) and invited us along. What? Go play in St. George only two weeks after having moved?! Fo' Shizzle!
We left Friday afternoon and we caravaned down. One stop in the thriving metropolis of Beaver for dinner; got to the hotel just in time to say "Sorry, kids, it's too late to swim."

Saturday was spent in Zion's. We woke late, had a nice late breakfast, and got to Zion's around 11:30AM. It was a gorgeous day! We went to the museum, ate some lunch, took the shuttle to Zion's Lodge and got ready for a hike. B has been to Zion's a lot, so he picked a great hike. We went to the Emerald Pools. We had 3 kids strapped to backs (A, B, and me --ha! That rhymed!), and 5 walking. We knew #2 would not --WOULD NOT --like to hike, but we gave her little choice. We didn't think it would be too long, but we ended up convincing ourselves to do the entire loop (2.6 miles). With eight children. Yeah...had we known...well, anyway, it wasn't always easy. But boy, was it worth it! We hiked to the beautiful pools, saw some amazingly spectacular views, felt the wind (and sand) in our faces, and had a great time. Super sore afterwards, but it was so worth it.
One sad thing, though. #2 and #1 got sick before we left for St. George --but they were well medicated for the hike. No complaints from #1 until the end; and she had bad shoes. #2 complained the entire way. But she complains when we walk to church (less than 2 blocks).
The hike took us a long time. We started around 1PM and didn't finish until 4:30PM. We were a tad slow. Oh! And the comments we got! Holy cow! We were in Utah, and still, people were staring at us like we were nutso. At one point, B, A, and I were walking with 7 of the kids --Brandon was back-a-ways with #3 (he had to go to the loo), and the stares were even worse. Suddenly B realized why and said "Hey, guys? Let's wait for Brandon so everyone will stop thinking we're polygamists." Too funny!

After the long hike, we took the kids to dinner in St. George and let them swim at the hotel for a while. The best part was bedtime (personally, that's always my favorite time of day with small children), because we had two sets of adjoining rooms. We'd put the baby monitor in our kids' room and then hang out in A and B's room; their kids were right next to them. Anyway, par-tay time! Well, as party-like as four exhausted parents can be.

Sunday (yesterday), we headed to the St. George Temple, went to the visitor's center and had a testimony meeting on the Temple grounds. It was short (our children have short attention spans), but it was very lovely. After lunch and park-time, we said our good-bye's. Brandon and I headed to Hurricane with our kids to visit my cousin and her family; the C family headed back north. The cousin visit was wonderful, but too short. We had to get back to Provo at a decent hour, because by golly, I needed to blog! Oh, I had school today. Yeah, that's it.
Fab weekend! Loved it! We totally bought a pass to all the National Parks (whilst-a-kicking ourselves for not buying one in Yosemite) so we can do more exciting vacay's with the kiddies this year. You know, I've never seen the Grand Canyon before...I wonder what we're doing next weekend...
Okay, here are pictures (and this time you can click them to make them bigger. I promise!) and a nice little video:

The People:

The Places:

The Video:


Heather said...

I love Zions in the spring... very magical place. You guys look like you had a lot of fun this weekend.

I'm really looking forward to your post on your weight loss, Cheryl. Ethan and I are in serious need of following in your footsteps.

Summer said...

You're making me miss Utah!

Leslie said...

Sweet pics! What a great trip! We live near the Grand Canyon and we're definately going this year...maybe we'll buy the season pass and go up to Yellowstone when we're up in ID this summer too...hum...good idea! Thanks Cheryl!

Cheryl said...

No worries! I'm workin' on it even as I type this.

Good! Then maybe you'll come back. :)

You're welcome! The season pass thing is totally worth it --if you'll be going to 3 or more parks (or to one more than 3 times?).

A said...

LOVED this weekend, Cheryl! I'm SO glad we did it! The kids can't stop talking about it and asking when they get to see their "cousins" again.

Amanda said...

It sounds like a great weekend. The picture of the sand writing is priceless.

I am thinking that I must have went to HS with B if he grew up in that house. What year did he graduate? Is he our age? Just curious...

Jamie J said...

What a great weekend! I love Zion, so beautiful!

Anonymous said...

That looks lovely--I'm glad you had a good time!

Mother of the Wild Boys said...

How awesome, what a great time...and I love the video. :)