Our second day there the kids and I took a drive up little cottonwood with my brother Blake and his adorable little boy, Daniel. The canyon was beautiful, as always:
And then we spotted something truly amazing to Vaughn's eyes. A tractor. A tractor. Up close and personal:
Blake asked the man working there if Vaughn might be able to sit in it for a minute. And for that minute Vaughn was in heaven:
But...while he was sitting up there in awe/excitment/amazement, I KNEW that the ineveitable was going to happen. He was going to have to get off. That this was in the works:
I want to ride the tractor. I want to ride the tractor. I want to ride the tractor.
He was just so sad. Was it worth it? Absolutely.
My kids behavior has me reflecting so often of my own. This instance had me thinking of how many things that I haven't had in the past-- in college when I didn't have a car and had to walk everywhere, sometimes very inconveniently. But the second I got one and it breaks down, or I have to go a day without it I'm whining and complaining and miserable because:
I want my car. I want my car. I want my car.
It's so great having a two year old to remind you how natural these emotions and feelings are, and how ridiculous they can be as well.
We enjoyed a couple of days staying at my brother Paul and his wife Beth's house. We got to jump on their trampoline, and have all sorts of fun with them. The highlights for me were the first night staying up for several hours with Paul and Beth just visiting. They are both just such good friends to me. I sure love them. One of the days Grace drew me some pictures that are adorable. She's a talented little artist. Then we enjoyed a trip to the bowling lanes! Vaughn's first trip, mind you.
It was the perfect way to spend a rainy day.
It was a trip of simple pleasures. One of the days I enjoyed a snack with my Dad. I scoffed and wrinkled my nose at a bowl of cottage cheese that he had cut up a fresh tomato in, and drizzled olive oil and Balsamic vinegar on. "Try it" he challenged me, "just try it. It's better than a bowl of ice cream." And he was right. It was deliscious. The key is the balsamic vinegar. He buys the really good imported stuff that is aged for a minimum of 12 years. He explained the process of how it aged, and why it tastes so much better that way. I told him the only thing it needed was a pinch of fresh basil, and bought him a little plant later in the week. We'll see if he likes it. Now all I need to find is a place in this town that sells the good stuff (and to convince Rick that we need to spend the money on an imported bottle of it).
We loved spending the morning with Clark and Amanda and seeing thier new house. Amanda made us such a yummy breakfast, and was so sweet to invite us over. Vaughn had lots of fun playing with Claire.
A few nights later we got to see John and Kim's new house in Eagle Mountain and have dinner with them, my parents, and Scott and Heidi. Little Kaylee was so cute, and took us on a tour of her house. She was so proud to show us her room, and her Dora bed, and everything else. They have such a cute house (and a cute little girl!). Mason took some of his first steps after dinner. We all cheered and clapped for him. It made me so happy to have him surrounded by a cheering and supportive family for such a big moment in his life. He was so proud of himself. Afterward we played ring around the rosies, and then walked to the park and played on the swings and slide.
We went and saw the movie Up, a FANTASTIC movie. I would recomend it to anyone. Most of my family came and we all enjoyed it. After the movie was over the kids played and danced to the closing credits at the front of the theater:
We made strawberry jam.
Had lunch with a friend at Wheeler Farm.
Spent time with Grandma Fitz.
Played with Grandma Emett, and played with her kitty, and in her yard. One of the days we thought we had lost Vaughn. He was playing outside on the patio with his trike for a few minutes while my Mom was getting ready to take him with her to visit a neighbor. We had the door open and it suddenly got quiet, so I went to check on him, and he and his trike were gone. I looked down the street both ways and didn't see him, and started to get a pounding heart, and a sinking stomach. I told my Mom to watch the baby while I got in the car and drove around trying to find him. For 15 minutes I drove frantically around, asking everyone I saw if they had seen a little boy on a tricycle. Nobody had. Every few minutes I would go back to my Mom's house while she frantically walked around with the baby searching all over her yard and near her house for him. And each time I would pull up and she still hadn't found him, I became more and more panicked. He couldn't have gotten that far. Finally I pulled back into the driveway, and was about to call the police and go into full hysterics when Vaughn bounded out of the playroom and into the kitchen. Both my Mom and I started crying/yelling at him. He looked shocked and immediately started crying and telling both of us "Don't why...don't why (cry)!" He had gotten his bike wedged between my Mom's car and the patio post, where it wasn't visible, then had climbed into my Mom's car pretending to drive. Because his bike was gone, I had assumed he had taken off, and didn't even think to look in the car. While we were searching all over for him he had gone in the house and played in there. Scary!
On our last day there we took my Mom out to breakfast for her birthday. She picked Burger King, so that Vaughn would have somewhere to play while we ate. My Grandma came with us. During breakfast while Vaughn was playing, he got scared on part of the playplace, so my Mom climbed up there with him, and played with him for a while. Up they climbed, and down they slid over and over again. Me and my Granmda just laughed at the sight of the two of them. My Mom really is the funnest Grandma to my kids in the whole world. Really, what other 56 year old woman would pick Burger King for her birthday breakfast, and then climb up in the playplace to play with her grandkids? We're so blessed to have her in our life.
That same night Amanda hosted a double birthday party for my Mom and Grace (born on the same day 50 years apart). We enjoyed yummy food, and family. Vaughn enjoyed this tunnel that Sally brought:
The next morning we drove home early, and I enjoyed the kids sleeping:
They really wore themselves out, or I should say we really wore ourselves out.
When we got home, and Vaughn saw Rick he said "I so happy Daddy. I so happy to see you Daddy, and be home. I so happy."
Distance made the heart grow fonder.