Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Vacation to Utah Part 5: On Top of the World

We met up with Sam's dad and Elena, Elena's son Paul, and Amanda's family at a Ninja Warrior gym in Sandy. It was such a fun, amazing facility and the boys were completely enamored as they ran up the warped wall, climbed the nets, jumped into foam pits, and played dodgeball.
We got there right when it opened and there was one other family there. The woman watched us and said, "Do you have 5 boys, too?" She was there with her 5 boys and they were all the same ages as ours!!
I was like, "I kind of feel like we should be best friends!" and Talmage chimed in, "You should be Facebook friends!" Haha. We did instantly bond a little bit and had some fun chatting.
Soon the place was swarming with little boys and their parents, all trying to find an activity to help the energy levels in the winter!

After lunch at Chuck-a-Rama, we headed up the mountain to Grandpa's house. There was loads of snow all the way up there, so we got the boys dressed in their snow gear and went outside to play!
We built a little slide thanks to Sam's suggestion, and Talmage loved building a couple of snowmen.

That night Joj's family and Amanda's family all joined us and we had Christmas, Round 3.
We received so many amazing presents once again!
Amanda brought us amazing gifts from Ireland and the boys came away with a TON of new Legos.

The next day, Sam took the oldest 4 boys to a nearby park to go sledding again while I stayed home with Benson, who was taking a nap. Sledding at this park kind of feels like sledding on top of the world! The views there are stunning!!!

The following day, we went sledding again in the morning with Joj's family, at the same park. That made 4 different sledding excursions during our vacation--more than we would go sledding all Winter when we actually lived in Utah! We definitely got in our fill of snow play.
After a delicious Peruvian lunch of lomo saltado that Elena made, we drove down to Utah Lake.
On the way, Sam's dad picked up a bag of rocks from the hardware store, with the thought that the boys would have fun skipping rocks on the lake. But when we got there, the lake was frozen solid!
It didn't deter the kids one bit. The little ones used the rocks anyway to throw into some slushy puddles on the shore and the older boys had the best time throwing ice chunks across the lake and trying to use bigger rocks and sticks to break through the surface of the ice (they were unsuccessful--the ice was pretty thick!).
I was swooning over the gorgeous backdrop and took so many pictures.
Seeing Benson traipse around in his little boots was almost more than I could handle.

Benson loves hugging people, and Walter loved being hugged by him! They are such a cute pair.

A few more moments to make note of:
Mark and Elena generously let us use the Master bedroom and had a crib for Benson to use next to the bed. Rather than having the other boys sleep in the basement, we thought it would work best for them to be close to us in case of bad dreams or other needs in the night, so we lay a couple of twin size mattresses on the floor and they all cuddled up together.
One night, after they were asleep, Benson came in (who was going to sleep later) and carefully lay a stack of Legos across Lincoln's chest.

The boys also loved poring over a Peanuts comic book and taking advantage of Disney Plus, which Mark and Elena got to help Paul learn English (French is his first language and he is still learning English). I made a DI run with Hillary one afternoon and Sam sent me this picture while we were gone. I love that Walter and Joj are relaxing in the exact same position...like father, like son!

**Today's Tidbit: Organizing may very well be my favorite hobby. It does WONDERS to help me de-stress and it is so unbelievably satisfying to me! It's honestly kind of ridiculous. I am working on re-organizing just about every nook and cranny of our house and loving every minute of it. These cereal containers are one of my favorite recent purchases! (But no, thanks on the labels.)

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