Thursday morning, we traveled to where B's sisters and their families were camping, about 30 minutes up Payson Canyon. Oo, it was a little toasty when we first arrived (see Soren's rosy cheeks and Zane's head-poured-over-with-water below). We'd been having 100+ degrees days in Utah, and I guess we hadn't gone far enough INTO any mountains to experience much relief. I was so impressed that these folks had been handling (read: enduring) the high temperatures for days.
First up was lunch: yummy Scout Tacos. I tried to go around and find happy faces, but I feel inclined to repeat what Brad said when he admitted that Alyson (below with the kids) had really done most of the cooking and deserved the praise (even though it was him behind the hot grill in the picture).
Gotta love that same Alyson who might have done a little photo bombing below.
After lunch, we wandered over to a shadier and therefore cooler spot in the woods (SOOO much more pleasant!), where we took part in one of the most fun activities this family has ever taken part in: KARAOKE!
Little and big girls alike got us started with a couple FROZEN classics (how about that height difference between Annie and Brynne, who had a fabulous time together all day?).
Then the adults got their chance. A little "Cotton-Eyed Joe," anyone?
My favorite big boys sang two classics for us: "Living on a Prayer" and "Don't Stop Believing." Need I say more?
This set of twins grew TALL this year. Taking their picture next to TALL trees seemed appropriate.
Some famous line-dance song I can't remember right now:
Soren got a kick out of the group dancing. He wasn't ever brave enough to sing in the microphone but YMCA, line dance, All the Single Ladies, he was game.
After Zane's epic air guitar solo, Lee probably gave us the best performance of the afternoon:
Such fun! I could have stayed there all day.
Instead, we went down to Payson Lake.
Who's that big fellow sinking the boat out there? Oh yeah, it's uncle Brandon (Pops to some!). And Soren, who loved the boating adventure.
There was fun to be had on land too. Aunt Lindsey is the best.
I liked the shy smiles I got here and there. And I love how much Annie loves her Pops:
We stayed long enough for a group birthday party at dusk. Such beauty in this world!
Have I mentioned how happy we all were to have our Pops with us this week? We'd been missing him! He made time for individual time with each kiddo, which I so appreciated. B, you did great, thanks!
One more of the lovely nature out there. When I get home, I'm making a wall of nature photographs, in hopes of remembering how peaceful and blessed I felt that night, being a part of this big world. Most of the photographs will be from Nick because he is such an outstanding (astounding) artist (Nick, if you're reading, this is me buttering you up so you'll send me some photos), but I might include this one in the bunch. Happiness.
Or maybe this one. It was a good couple of alone minutes.
Okay, back to the family. Mainly I took this next shot because I loved how full of "camping" (read: dirt) the outer two children were.
Elise must have sensed my awe, because she requested another picture all to herself.
Here's another of Lindsey, because she is our favorite Lindsey.
This (possibly cutest picture of Soren ever) was taken right after he was gifted 4 new hot wheels from aunt Alyson and Uncle Brad. We sure love those thoughtful and generous folks.
Next, group pictures! While we waited for the others, B and his sisters had a bit of fun. One word, folks: muscles.
Now, siblings! (I love it when my editing makes it look like Brandon wet his pants. Better him than me!)
And the whole group this year (missing our missionary grandparents!):
After the party, B and the older two stayed to camp for the night, but Soren and I drove home to AF just as the sun set. Beau-ti-ful.
Another amazing adventure!