Friday, June 23, 2017

Family Reunion

Every other year my family {my parents, siblings (and their spouses and kids)} have a family reunion. We missed the last one because I was too close to giving birth to Ocean, so it was nice to be there this time.

This year we rented a large house in Hurricane, Utah, which is outside Zion NP. It was a pretty nice setup, with lots of bedrooms and a bunk room with 6 or 7 sets of bunk beds (I should have taken a picture of that- it was pretty cool). The cousins loved sleeping in the bunk room and thought the "secret passage" from the closet to the laundry room was pretty cool. The fact that it was a laundry chute only slightly diminished its cool factor.

There was a pool and a hot tub in the backyard that some of us played in while the more adventurous hiked the Narrows. I would have gone on the hike, but I didn't want to risk injuring myself a week and a half before my half marathon.

There was an upstairs landing area set up as a game area with a short table and cushions. Ocean found them and looked so pleased to find something just his size.

There was also a little putting green in the backyard, which when it wasn't being used for golf purposes was the ladderball area. We bought a cheap ladderball set at Target and most of the cousins jumped in to help Mr M put it together. They managed it eventually :)

One day we left the boys with my parents and most of the rest of us went to Zion NP to climb Angel's Landing. The crowds for the shuttle buses in the morning were pretty crazy.

I'll do a post specifically about our Angel's Landing hike, but in the meantime, here's a picture of some of us at the top. Doesn't everyone look super excited? It was hot :)

After Angel's Landing, we hiked to Weeping Rock and the lower Emerald Pool. Weeping Rock was cool, but the lower Emerald Pool was not looking very emerald. We all braved the drips at Weeping Rock to sit on the ledge for pictures.

the girl cousins

the older boy cousins (the younger four weren't on this hike)

the sibs and spouses who were hiking that day

My parents, River, Ocean, and my brother and his wife joined us later in the afternoon and we hiked to Weeping Rock again after a stop at the museum. My parents had brought the stroller, so I pushed Ocean in the stroller while River walked. The path to Weeping Rock is paved, but it is steep in spots, so I wouldn't actually recommend pushing a stroller up it. If I hadn't already gotten a workout doing Angel's Landing, I definitely got one doing Weeping Rock the second time with a stroller.

A family reunion wouldn't be a family reunion without some sort of calamity, but I think this year's was pretty mild. None of the hikes (that I went on) were too bad (the Narrows and Subway that some of the others did were more intense, but not everyone did those, so they don't count). Angel's Landing is intense, but enough of us had done it before that we weren't in danger of getting lost or taking a wrong turn (really hard to do on that hike, but it's happened on other hikes).

The excitement came in the form of a grease fire in the grill as it heated up for dinner. Luckily there was a fire extinguisher in plain view in the kitchen, so the fire was put out before any damage occurred.

Some activities that had been on the schedule didn't happen, but I think it's better to have too many options than too few. We do like to keep busy.... :)

This year's reunion felt a bit fragmented as different groups went off on different hikes and other stayed behind to do other activities. It's not a bad thing, but I do think it will probably continue to happen at future reunions. Trying to find activities that everyone can do with a group ranging in age from not-yet-2 to senior citizen grandparents can be difficult.

In the end, the reunion was fun and it was good to spend time with everyone who was able to come (one brother and one sister weren't able to be there).

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