Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Nelson Park City Vacation 2013

It was time for our yearly vacation with my family and this year was particularly exciting because we ALL were together. Scott just got back from his mission to Brazil, so meeting up with everyone in Park City was the first time we were able to see him since he got back. That first hug from him was so awesome!! My kids sure loved seeing him too :)

We rented out a house in Park City and joined up Friday evening after everyone got done with work and traveling. We were up quite late that first night talking and laughing with each other.

The next morning we went out to explore the city. First we drove one of the scariest drives ever to Cascade Springs. Talk about uphill/downhill, cliff-edged, loopy, dizzy, tiny-roads driving. Ugh. With a girl that gets carsick and ended up curled up in ball crying that she wanted to go home from her carseat, I did not enjoy that drive. In fact every memory I have of that drive, something bad has happened including: brakes going out, losing a baby blanket out the window and having to stop and chase it down. However, it was worth the risk because I love Cascade springs.

It was sunny, beautiful, filled with good company, and Kenny and Ammon matched, which is awesome. 

Scottie and I were also able to come together once again, as the creators of the Nelson smile, and show everyone how it's done.

Man we're attractive.

After Cascade Springs we had lunch at the park, played some frisbee, and relaxed. That night including chillng at the cabin and playing games together.

Day two - Sunday - we went to church, took naps, played games, had Scott report on his mission, had Kyle and Katrina report on their trip to India, and did family blessings. It was a very special, spiritual day. That day strengthened our bonds as family more than anything.

Day three - Monday  - we went to Alpine Slides. At Alpine slides you usually pay for the one attraction you want to do out of the slide/zipline/coaster. When you purchase your ticket it also gets you one ski-lift ride (normally $12 on it's own) so that you can get up the hill to the start. Katrina took Kayleen on the coaster, and Grandpa Nils stayed with my kids and took them on the merry-go-round, and Lydia on the little zipline (which is hilarious because he didn't really want to but was going so she could, then she tried to back out at the last minute because she was scared. My dad told her if she didn't go then he couldn't and asked her to please go. So they both didn't really want to but did it for each other. I guess they endured it together, haha). The rest of us paid for the zipline and so we all jumped on the ski-lift together. 

And then it started raining.

Have you ever been stuck on a chairlift in shorts and a t-shirt when freezing cold rain start pouring on you? What started as a relaxing, leisurly ride enjoying the scenery turned into a slow, wet, prolonged torture of freezing to death. You can't really get off or shelter yourself in any way, you just have to keep crawling up the hill.

My mom was smart and brought a jacket, I just froze to death. I could handle getting wet, but the cold was awful. My face in the picture says it all.

The other hiccup from the rain was that the zipline shuts down because apparently the brakes don't work when they get wet. So we loaded up in SUV's and were shuttled back down the mountain to have our tickets signed so that we could come back when the rain was done.

By time we got down, ironically it had stopped raining. So we hopped back on the chairlift for a second time. We were rejoicing because we were getting two chairlift rides for the price of one!

The second ski-lift ride was much more enjoyable and we made it to the zipline line and waited for a few minutes...until we were told the zipline was on hold for a lightning strike. It's a half hour wait from the time of each lightning strike. We couldn't believe it! Then they told us we could either ride in SUV's again or take the slide down and come back when the lightning strike hold was over. Our whole family burst out laughing.

Normally an alpine slide ride is an extra twenty dollars and we were going to not only get to do it for free, but also get to go on the ski-lift AGAIN. The weather we thought was against us, was actually getting us five things for the price of one: three chairlifts, one alpine slide, and one zipline.

After riding the slide down to the bottom (it was super fun! I recommend it...unless you get stuck behind someone slow...like Kenny did thanks to Kyle trading him places) we decided to go play games at the cabin, have our special cone treats, and come back in the afternoon when it seemed less likely to be held up by weather.

That afternoon went without a hitch and we finally made it to the zipline, though it seemed too good to be true. We actually made it?! No rain, or lightening, or thunder? No hurricanes, tornadoes, or monsoons to stop us this time!

I love ziplines. The very first part is intimidating because you rest your feet against the metal gate which they just swing open and you fall, but then you're flying down the mountain and it's a blast!

That evening we tried a restaurant together in Park City called Bandit's Bar and Grill. They were supposed to have really good food (yams to die for) and be family/kid friendly. I know since I was in charge of the food again for this trip and had researched all the restaurants in the area.

Thirteen people out to dinner together. It was fun.

And my kids...I like them.

Anyways, the food was good, but not as spectacular as it should be for the price (kids meals $8 people!) and the sweet potatoes were nothing special despite what the reviews promised. All in all, it was a pricey, standard restaurant. But it was fun to try a new place. We went home and played Mafia all together. Talk about a fun family game. It sure told us who knows how to lie convincingly, and who nobody believes ;)

Day four - Tuesday - we went outlet shopping and then went back to Salt Lake to look at the prophet headstones at the Salt Lake City Cemetery. 

It was hot and tiring in the afternoon. Especially carrying around a cranky toddler who just wanted a nap. The sprinklers were on all over the place and it became an adventure trying not to get soaked while paying our respects (talk about inefficient watering during the heat of the day, what a waste). 

However, I had never visited President Hinckley's grave and I felt the Spirit so strong and really enjoyed seeing his headstone and saying a prayer of gratitude for that amazing man. If you haven't see it, I recommend it. It's really neat.

That night we had a bbq with some old neighbors, played games outside, had a bonfire, and recovered from our expeditions.

My mom fit all the kids on her lap (grandma/mom of champions!) and then I blinded them all with my flash, Sadie earned a few more chins, and Scott is ever-always on his phone.

This vacation was much less structured than past trips and it was nice to just go wherever the wind carried us. I only wish we could have fit in more hiking. Besides that, it was perfect. These people are my favorite in the whole world and a weekend spent just with them always means the world to me. Especially since we ALL were together again. Who knows if we'll be able to pull that off in the future with us all growing up and going different directions.

I'm already looking forward to our trip next year.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Snapshots of the Tappanas

Now that I have a smartphone, I find that I take quite a few random pictures and I don't do as much posting because I don't really have a theme or event. So instead I'll just start posting my random pictures that represent what's going on in our lives.

Brigham and I used a Groupon for a movie and popcorn. I was so excited because I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE movie popcorn and never get it because it's so expensive. I was so excited that I didn't eat beforehand to make sure I wasn't too full to eat the popcorn. Bad idea. I only made it one-third of the way through the bag before I was so, so sick and couldn't eat anymore.

My kiddos love to walk around in our shoes. I always walk in my room and find our shoes scattered all over the place.

 We went on an over-nighter camping trip with the Young Women, and waking up to find my babies cuddling together, sleeping, was the BEST. Truly an "Awww" moment.

While we were at said camping trip, our air conditioner decided to malfunction and run all night long, despite being set at a high temp. We had to manually turn it off once we got home. The second we opened the door I knew something was wrong because it was SO cold in our house. My kids cried in the tub because they were freezing. It was pretty funny to be wearing sweaters in our house in the middle of the summer. We still haven't gotten the bill. I'm afraid.

For Family Home Evening we made chocolate chip oatmeal cookies for me to bring to my visiting teaching families.

On Pioneer Day we tried out Seven Peaks Fun Center in Lehi. The race cars were a little loud for Ammon, and he rode like this the entire way.

Ammon stood there so proud that he could straddle the hallway by standing on the rugs, and wouldn't move until I took his picture. This boy sure is a character!

Of course Lydia wanted a picture too, but she didn't quite get what the point was...

Brigham turned in his last assignment for his master's program so we celebrated by getting slurpees for the kids, going on a walk, and then using a buy one get one free coupon at Coldstone for Brigham and I while we watched a Redbox. Sounds like a simple celebration, but it was lovely! It was what we were never able to do because Brigham was always doing homework. And now he's done! Yay!

And that's what's been going on for us in July. Stay posted because August is promising to be interesting :)