Our Utah/Idaho Vacation

Our family spent an amazing 16 days vacationing in Utah and Idaho last week. Michael was able to be with us the entire time (his work requires a "Core Leave" consisting of 10 consecutive business days off) and it was the best! This was Michael's first time flying with the kids, and I am so glad he was there to help. I have flown many times with Jada and Tucker, but the thought of all 3 alone was terrifying.

Luckily it was a breeze. Flying with 2 adults is a million times better than trying to do it alone. The kids did awesome and enjoyed flying in the airplane. On a funny note: While making our decent into SLC Tucker randomly started screaming and saying, "I want to get off! I want to get off!" Then when we tried to talk to him about it he said he "didn't want to crash in the water!" As soon as we were no longer over water he was fine. (Note to self: don't take Tucker anywhere that requires flying over the ocean). We landed in Salt Lake on Sunday at 10AM all happy and excited.

With lots of people to see and things to do, the fun started right away. My dad picked us up from the airport and we all went back to their house to take naps and play for a bit. After all the kids got naps and were ready to go, we headed off and drove down to Lindon to visit our friends the Mounts. We spent a fun evening with them having dinner with the entire family and then hanging out with Bob and Claire in the evening. The kids had a great time. Bob was even kind enough to help them fix their light saber flashlights and put on Frozen for them in the morning to watch while they waited for breakfast to be ready. It was so wonderful to see them again. We sure love you and miss you Mount family!

After a delicious breakfast made by Claire, we got ready for the day and headed down to BYU. We spent the later morning and afternoon walking around campus, visiting my old boss Scott Greenhalgh, taking pictures, and spending some good money at the BYU Store (formally known as the Bookstore:)). We let the kids pick out a t-shirt for themselves and gave into their pleas for matching BYU hats. (I won't lie, I am glad we did. They LOVE them and wear them all the time.) Michael and I got a couple things as well. To top it all off we even got chocolate covered gummy bears, my favorite!

After we had finished up at BYU we picked up some Pita Pit (another favorite) and took the kids to the duck pond. As expected, it was a hit. The kids loved feeding the ducks and seeing all the turtles. I think we were there for over an hour. Jada and Tucker didn't want to leave.

After our delicious lunch and some quality time spent at the pond, we headed out. On our way to our friends house, we took a detour and drove by our old house in Provo and then stopped at one of my old single apartments in Provo, the spot where Michael and I first met. We took a fun family selfie at that very spot.

Following those quick stops, we got back into the car and made the drive to Saratoga Springs. We stayed the next few days with our best friends, Kate and Cody Leishman. It was so awesome to be together again. We had so much fun. The kids were instant buddies and loved playing together. In our few days with them we: visited the Thanksgiving Point Curiosity Museum, went to Neptune Park (which was awesome), spent a day at Veteran Memorial Park/The Provo Rec swimming pools (which was THE BOMB! If you live near Provo and haven't been, you must go!), went to Cafe Rio, had movie night, tried Brigham's Brew (Rootbeer), went shopping, and just had the best time. We even managed to squeeze in a day with Aunt Becca. We went and visited her at her new apartment and she joined us at the Provo Rec pool. The kids loved spending time with Becca. She even introduced us to some delicious shaved ice stand in Provo and Swig cookies:) It was an awesome start to our vacation. We love you Becca and we love the Leishmans!

Inevitably, Thursday came and we had to be on our way. After afternoon naps we loaded up the car and started our drive to Idaho Falls. We took an hour and a half pit stop in Syracuse to have dinner with my parents. Jada and Tucker were pretty bummed that they didn't get to spend more time with Maimi and Poppi on Sunday and had been asking every day when we were going to go back to their house, so they were pretty excited to get to stop by. When we finished our pizza we had to get back on the road. We arrived in Idaho Falls around 9PM to Gramma and Grandpa J waiting for us at Michael's Aunt Jana's (where we would be staying for the next few nights). The kids were excited to see them too! Both grandparents in 1 day . . . how could you complain!?

We spent the following 3 day in Idaho Falls attending the Johnson Family reunion (Michael's mom's side of the family). I even managed to do a few photo sessions while I was there:) We had a fun weekend seeing lots of family, playing games, swimming in the river, riding horses (the highlight for the kids), eating lots of food, and enjoying each others company. Jada and Tucker's cousins, Justin and Adie from Michigan were there too and they loved being together again.

The reunion wasn't quite as expected, but we were still glad that we got to go and see everyone. Poor Grandma Johnson ended up having surgery a few days before the reunion and was in the hospital the entire time. All of her children took turns staying with her and Grandpa Johnson was with her a lot too. It just wasn't the same without Grandma and Grandpa Johnson there. Luckily we were able to go visit them for a few minutes and Great Grandma and Grandpa Johnson got to meet Tucker and Memphis for the first time.

On Sunday after attending church with the family and grabbing some lunch back at Grandma's, we headed back to Utah to my parents house. And that is where we spent the remainder of our vacation. The kids were so excited to finally be at Maimi and Poppi's. They loved being in Idaho and visiting our friends, but they were so happy to finally be with Maimi and Poppi to stay for awhile.

On Monday night Michael and I left the kids with my parents and drove back down to Provo where we had dinner with the Leishman's, then went to see Becca perform in the musical Crazy For You. She was one of the Follie girls and did lots of tap dancing. It was so fun to go see her perform. Michael's parents and Aunt and Uncle were there too. Becca did amazing!

While with my parents, we did lots of fun things together. We visited the Hill Air Force Base Museum, went to eat at my favorite restaurants (Tony's and El Matador), I got to go on a lunch date with my mom, we had family pictures taken, we went to the Dinosaur Park in Ogden and were joined by my High School BF Elise and her son Bryce, road the Frontrunner to Temple Square and got to see the Salt Lake Temple and the Christus there (the driver of the Frontrunner even let the kids come sit in his seat while we were waiting at the station), went to the City Center Mall, got snow cones and shaved ice, spent a morning swimming at the Rush Aquatic center, took the kids bowling, went to see Inside Out, had our friends come up and BBQ one evening, Michael got to go golfing with my dad, we got to see some family, played games, Memphis got an ear infection, and much much more. As you can tell, it was an eventful and action packed week. We loved every minute.

Our entire trip was the best. We loved every minute. We didn't get to see all of our friends, but did our best to see as many as we could. For those of you we missed, next time!

Our flights home were a little more rocky, figuratively and literally, but we made it. It was pretty shaky while we went through many clouds and Tucker was not a big fan (lets be honest, either was I). I tried to keep it together while I comforted Tucker and reassured him we would be just fine (meanwhile trying not to throw up myself). Luckily he just held my hand and did just fine. Memphis did amazing, especially considering the fact that we didn't know he had an ear infection yet. Michael held him most of the time and that seemed to be exactly what he wanted.

Until next time Utah!

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