Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Pow-Wow with the Palmer's & Wawros... :)

*Wow... it's already been a week since the family has left us, but I had to blog about all of the fun we had on our vacation! On Tuesday, July 1oth, Jared (Ed's brother) and Emily came with their two girls, Aubrey, age 6, and Natalie, age 3. We've never met the girls before because they live in California! We all met up at Randy (Ed's brother) and Naomi's to wait for them to get there from the hotel. As they are walking up to the house, Oliver and Eden scream out the window, "Our cousins are here!" They were SOOO excited to finally get to meet them!

*The next day it was Oliver's 6th birthday and so we had a party for him at Byrnes park. This was the first birthday that he actually had cousins here, Aubrey, Natalie and little Lydia, 3 months old! They all had fun playing with Oliver and Eden's friends as well. We played kickball and dodgeball and grilled hotdogs for everyone. We also had a pinata for the kids and they got enough candy to be doped up on for the next century! We also swam that evening at the hotel that Jared and Emily were staying at.

Oliver posing next to his birthday cake.

Cousin Aubrey chasing Oliver during an exciting game of dodgeball!

*Thursday we went on a family picnic to the park at Elk Run School. The kids played on the equipment and Ed and Danny shared a challenging game of tetherball together! (All I could think about was the end scene in Napoleon Dynamite! "I caught you a delicious bass.") Ed briefly explained the rules of tetherball to me as Danny was calling him a cheater! Then we all went to Lost Island Waterpark and played a round of miniature golf... this time Ollie didn't pee by the tree, thank goodness! Ed and Jared reinacted "The Crane" scene from The Karate Kid movie as well, which I thought for sure they would come crashing down and bust their heads! We also went on go-cart rides. Natalie and Aubrey both wanted to ride with Uncle Ed, but Natalie rode with her daddy instead. Ollie rode with me and said that he had so much fun riding around so fast!

Eden, Oliver, Natalie & Aubrey having fun at the park.

Danny calling Ed a cheater during a game of tetherball.

Ed reinacting "the crane kick" from The Karate Kid.

Ed and I picking the Tiki's rather large nostrils.

*Friday was a lazy day for us. Some of the family had gone to Nauvoo for the day to see the temple as well as the pageant.

*Saturday the rest of the families got here. Aaron, Andrew and Aiden came along with Eric, Alex and Liam (We missed Agi, Ali, Ashton as well as Anna and Joshua. We also missed Matt and Kari and their family!) They all went swimming at the hotel while I relaxed at home with Jaren for a bit. (I had just given birth about two weeks earlier!!) Evidentally the guys were a little rough and someone broke a light with a ball... hmmm... I wonder who that was... :) So... they had to shut down the pool area to clean out the pool. After that we all went to the movies. Some of us saw "Harry Potter", some saw "Ratatouille" and the rest saw, "Transformers". After that we met up with Bill and Janene (Ed's Sister) and their kids, Carina, Gabe, Brittan and Derek. We caravaned over to our favorite restaurant, Las Margaritas, and had dinner there. We took up like four tables and two boothes. Some men were playing music for us while we were there, which was a nice surprise. I bet they were glad when we left... :)

The "Fam" waiting for a large enough area to eat!

Eden sharing her beans and rice with Natalie.

*Sunday, we had the baby blessings for Lydia Marin Palmer and Jaren Freeman Palmer at church. This was the main reason that the family had decided to come. It was a really special time to have so much of the family there! After church we had family pictures outside and then went to David and Janine's for lunch outside. *The weather was GORGEOUS the whole week! What a blessing!* We all sat and talked while the cousins got to play together. Then we played the game, Celestial Companions, which is a cleaner LDS version of the Newlywed Game. We were all laughing at some of the answers that were given! I think that Naomi and Randy beat us all! :)

The Palmer and Wawro Families getting our pictures taken outside of the church building.

Eric, Danny, Aaron, Randy & Lydia, David, Ed & Jaren, Jared & Bill.

Our Family

*Monday morning Aaron, Eric and the boys left to go back to Utah. We wished we could have seen them more, but we were SO GLAD that we had the time that we did to spend with them. That day, the rest of the family went to Backbone State Park which is about an hour east of us. We rented the beach lodge and the kids swam and built sandcastles and stuff. Bill got really creative and made a sand sculpture of a mermaid. There were also paddleboats and canoes to rent as well! We rented a canoe and took the kids around the lake... pretty much in circles since we really didn't know how to maneuver the darn thing! Eden was yelling, "I want to go back... I'm gonna die!" I was laughing at Ed because of all four of us... he's the Eagle Scout! Don't they teach you how to steer a canoe in the Boy Scouts! All the outdoor stuff I know how to do, I learned from watching "Survivor"! :) Anyways... we had a good laugh! We also played some board games in the lodge as well. The kids had a ball, like they always do! Later, we packed up and headed to Independence to eat at the Pizza Ranch. As we were driving back home, it started to rain and then just POUR! We were definitely in a Thunderstorm. I'm glad Mother Nature waited until the last night that our company was there to really let loose! We were in Jared and Emily's hotel room and they were just loving the weather! We said our goodbye's to the Wawro's that night as well. We ended up staying at the hotel and watched a movie with Jared and Emily and the girls.

Carina, Aubrey and Brittan playing in the water.

Bill making a sand mermaid. Ollie thought it was pretty cool.

Eden and Natalie strutting their stuff on the beach!

Derek and Oliver throwing handfuls of sand into the water.

Our first family canoe ride that didn't even last 15 minutes! Eden thought she was going to die and wanted to see the beach again!

The last time the kids saw each other. Jaren and I in the chair. Eden, Carina, Aubrey, Natalie, Brittan and Ollie in back. Derek and Gabe in the front. They had a BLAST together!

*It was hard to say goodbye to everyone! It had been 7 years since we'd see Jared and Emily! It's been at least 3 since we'd seen everyone else. We had so much fun while they were here. I really hope that they enjoyed spending time with us as well! The kids REALLY miss their cousins. Just today, Eden said that she wanted to have a sleepover with Aubrey and Natalie. I had to remind her that they live in California!

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