I already posted about our San Jose trip, but we didn't stop there. We had oodles of activities. Our family was involved in our local Relay For Life as Team Eeyore. Both of the girls were a part of our team. Their main goal was to stay awake for midnight pizza. Poor Alina made to 11:30....and no amount of my nudging would wake her up.
We had a couple of weeks of swim lessons in which all three did great!! It was nice to have those before the last leg of our summer. The girls also attended a VBS at Grace Baptist. They do a wonderful job every year of reminding my girls of all the gifts God has given us; all the beautiful things in this world He made for us to enjoy. This was a great reminder before we set out to enjoy some new scenery.
John's brother tied the knot in July and this was the launching point for our fun filled adventures.
The five of us headed down south to Del Mar beach, which is in Ocean side on Camp Penelton. Thanks to Nana and Julianne the whole Fanshier family got to spend 4 nights in bungalow's on the beach. We literally could walk to the water...it was great. Alina tested her bravery by attempting to boogie board.
While Bella attempted to master the skill
Alina made it her mission along with cousin Eva to hunt sand crabs...they found some huge ones which creeped me out.
After 4 beautiful nights and 5 fun filled days of cousins playing the sun set on this leg of the trip.
We drove from Del Mar to Redondo Beach where the kids and I spent the night with my brother Dave. Which was fun as we don't get to see them much. In the morning my brother took us to the airport to board our flight on Great Lakes airline. Now you may not have heard of this company, that's because it is VERY small. It seats 18 passengers. It was hilarious seeing this tiny plane next to jumbo jets.
Now I need to state here that I am petrified of flying. This being said, my heart dropped when we landed in our first stop and we were told there had been a malfunction in flight so we would not be able to continue on our next leg. Okay this was not what I wanted to hear. They fed us a very nice lunch while we waited to hear what would happen. You see unlike a major airline, there were no back up planes. So they chartered a bus. (Picture planes, trains and automobile's here) well it turns out the malfunction was in the Transponder which does not affect the plane function at all...just it's ability to communicate with the towers.
Right after we loaded our bags on the bus, they got the all clear to fly at a lower elevation, making a transponder unnecessary. The kids thought it was a grand adventure...I was just hoping we'd land safely.
We had seemingly endless adventures while in Arizona and for sure enjoyed the time away from the hustle and bustle of our every day life as well as spending quality time with Grandma, Grandpa and Aunt Julie.
We swam in Lake Powell nearly every day, and though we mostly chose the same swimming hole, the skyline treated us to a new show daily.
The kids even got to try their hand at kayaking.
After attempting to kayak with Jasz and hitting him in the head with the oar...I decided to let him try on his own...which he LOVED!!
Here the kids pose with Grandpa and Aunt Julie while overlooking the Grand Canyon. We even had lunch at the Grand Canyon Inn, which boasts a restaurant that literally hangs over the edge of the Canyon...and yes I enjoyed myself.
On the way back from the Gran Canyon we discovered the Stone Houses. Which are homes carved out of the huge rocks, complete with stone beds, stone fire pits and stone kitchen counters. They weren't occupied by the same person all the time, rather they were used as stopping places for those traveling across the desert. The kids decided they were the perfect little homes to play pretend in.
The kids even got to dip their toes in the Colorado river, and though the air temperature was quite warm, all three were in agreement that the water was COLD...Brrr!!
One of the last things we did while in Page was take an Antelope Slot Canyon tour. These canyons are formed by the flash floods that happen in most desert areas. The landscape created by the swirling and rushing water is beautiful. These canyons fall on Navajo territory so we had to pay for a tour, but it was worth it, even the kids enjoyed the scenery.
The kids pose in the shadows and colors of the Slot Canyon.
On the way home we took a scenic detour to explore Zion National Park. Zion is a beautiful canyon with vibrant colors of red and green. It also is home to one of the largest tunnels carved literally through the mountain. It was a lovely place visually and looks like it would be quite a place to camp.
We made our way home and thus have started the rushed reality that is our life. It was nice to escape, but it is also nice to be home.
As the song says..."Thanks for the Memories."