Utah Squared

We took a trip to Utah last month and then again before and during Easter weekend.

We had fun.

We did lots of stuff.

We're glad we got to go, and glad to be back safe in our little nest we call home.

The first trip I flew solo. And when I say I flew solo, what I really mean, is that I drove for 7 hours by myself with both kids. I learned a lot on this trip like:
  • It is best to travel in the morning before the baby's first nap. That way we get lots of sleeping time in.
  • Traveling with depends might not be the worst idea while traveling with two small children. Especially if you inherited your Mom's bladder. Not that I'd actually travel wearing depends. Didn't some crazy astronaut do that a while back? Anyway... I just like the idea is what I'm saying.
  • It's best not to let a curious two year old sleep in your Dad's art studio surrounded by tubes of paints, brushes, and exacto knives. He might come out from his nap with BRIGHT orange paint all over his face, hands, hair, clothes, mouth, and when you go into the room, it might be smeared all over his play pin, the walls, the carpet, and the door. Thank heavens it was just a tube of watercolor. We could have had some serious trouble.
Even though there was lots of fun to be had, I have two favorite memories:
  • I had a 2.5 year old birthday party for Vaughn at Classic, and my family and good friend Linda came to it. I know Vaughn doesn't need a 2.5 birthday party, and that he will never remember it. I just felt sad that his 2nd birthday got forgotten since Mase was born 3 days before. It was more for me, if anything. While preparing for the party I made cupcakes. For about a year, Vaughn has loved pancakes. Every time I make them though, he calls them cupcakes. I've tried and tried to get him to call them pancakes, but he wouldn't budge. Cupcakes are a new thing to Vaughn. He's never had one. While making them, I said "Look Vaughn, we're making cupcakes!" and talked him through the whole process. When they came out of the oven, Vaughn said, "Oh look Mom! PANCAKES!" Clear as day. And he's called pancakes by their correct name ever since.

  • We went to Wheeler Farm with my brother Paul, his wife Beth, and their family, and had lots of fun. We got there a few minutes before they arrived and got to look at the baby lambs. The sun was just setting, and Vaughn was feeding the mama's grass trough the fence. Mase was snuggled up next to me. It was a peaceful moment, the three of us there alone with the lambs. I felt so happy to have my little babies close to me, and to be in beautiful Utah at a place I spent so much time at as a little.

The second trip the whole fam piled into the blues mobile and drove off into the sunset. I learned from my past mistakes, and didn't drink too much cola or agua. I was thirsty, but at least we didn't have to stop every 30 minutes.

When we were approaching SLC (my hometown), I reflected very deeply on something that I think of a lot on my drives to Utah-- the billboards. It seems that in Utah County or the closer you are to Utah County, the funnier they get to me. Or maybe it's that I've just driven from Sin City, am properly desensitized, and get a bit of culture shock approaching home. Wouldn't it be hilarious to switch Provo's billboards with Las Vegas' in the middle of the night and watch the fireworks fly? I can just picture travelers heading into Vegas wondering if they made a wrong turn somewhere, and shocked Mothers in their mini-vans telling their children to cover their eyes.

I'm sorry. I'm so irreverent.

But seriously. It kind of creeps me out. I can't explain why. I think deep down inside I'm afraid Heaven might be like Provo. What if I do everything I'm supposed to and I get there and everyone has Thomas Kincaid pictures on their walls, with Cozy 103.5 music playing softly in the background, and casseroles in the oven. What if they smile at me sweetly and say ever-so-softly, Welcome to Heaven Sister Harris...Please leave your caffeinated beverage at the door. Will I be able to back away slowly? Join the others on the sofa with our naughty beverages and watch Simpson's re-runs? I don't know...I just don't know...

Again, sorry. I'm so irreverent. And also, I don't actually know anyone from Provo. I'm sure it's a lovely place with lovely people.

We enjoyed time with Rick's family, as his niece Jenny got married. She made a beautiful bride.
We got to go to the animation studio where she is just graduating from, and see some of the films she has worked, and is working on. It was cool to see a little bit about the process of them being made. She is one talented, smart, beautiful girl. She'll make Nick a happy guy I'm sure.

Vaughn had fun playing with his cousins, both on Rick's side:
and his cousins on my side:

What a bunch of cuties. The boys are so lucky-- we're so lucky to have so much wonderful family (Rick and my own).

The Easter egg hunt was fun. Vaughn cared much more about driving the play car they had in the backyard then hunting for eggs. Rick had a wonderful time fly fishing with his brothers and nephew while I spent time with my family.

And we came back home, and that is the end of our adventures...for now, at least.