We were lucky enough to have the opportunity to go to St. George, UT for spring break this year. It has become a tradition for many years now to visit southern Utah’s red rocks and enjoy the outdoors after being cooped up for the winter.
This year we joined Lance and Anne’s family again, along with the Puzey’s – sans Diana, and the Peterson’s – another family from Sugar City. We kicked off our adventure by checking our kids out of school at noon with our car and trailer loaded to the hilt with camping gear, bikes, food, and luggage.
We made it to Inkom when the tire on our trailer decided to blow! YIKES. Good thing for spare tires…the guys changed it in record time and we were back on the road without loosing much time.
We were anxious to get to our camp spot, because not only would it be almost dark when we arrived and we needed to set up a tent – we weren’t entirely sure if there would be camping available. It was first come first serve in primitive camping at the Bearclaw Poppy trails. The Puzey Fam were following on the road with us. We arrived near 8:30 pm on the bumpy and steep road to our site and finally set to work getting our tents up and sleeping bags unrolled. The rest of our party arrived closer to midnight.
Next morning we were up and eating breakfast after a lovely (and surprisingly warm) nights sleep. Lily apparently has always wanted to eat the fruit of a cactus, so got all of the kiddos excited about cutting in that for our morning entertainment. The events of the day included an excursion to Gooseberry Mesa to ride bikes…all of us! After that, we had a picnic and headed to Red Cliff Reserve. The kids loved getting wet on our hike in the narrow canyons after a windy and sweaty bike ride. Lily kissed a frog….gross! 😉 For dinner we drove to In-N-Out Burger, then back to our campground for popcorn over the fire, s’mores, and kids playing night games.
Friday it was decided that our bike ride would be the bearclaw poppy trail. Olivia’s bike steering was awful from the previous ride so we were all juggling bikes around to find a way we could all be successful and happy. 🙂 She had a hard time being excited, but plowed through all the way to the end! My favorite thing about Olivia on our spring break trips is her attention to the beautiful details: flowers, rock shaped hearts, etc.. JT, on the other hand, was so anxiously excited he rode way ahead of the others and eventually was lost with Gordon Peterson. We didn’t even realize it, until we ended and then the panic set in. Luckily it didn’t last long as we asked some of the other riders if they had seen two boys and they told us they had and where they were. YIKES! I’m so grateful they didn’t get hurt or kidnapped. I guess that is bound to happen with such a large group. Mason was a rockstar and re-rode the entire trail backward to find the stranded boys. Stephen headed back to camp and got the trailer for all of our bikes. Thankfully all ended well. We rode our bikes back to camp and then ate lunch while determining our next move. Since camping and being sweaty most everyone was ready for a dip in some water. We headed out of town and found a free lake. Stephen challenged any takers to swim across the lake for $5. Sami, Mason, and Owen took him up on it and completed the challenge! Lily and the older girls washed there hair in an adjoining body of water. She said she could check washing her hair next to a duck off her bucket list. Afterward drove to Snow Canyon for a hike to a cave. There we cut open glow sticks and splattered then on us and the walls so we could play glow in the dark hide and seek. It was a lot of fun! We settled on pizza from Little Caesars for dinner and ate it at an awesome park while we watched the little and big kids play on the toys. What a full, fun, and exhausting day!
When we first began our plans in January about where to celebrate Spring Break and determining that we would camp to save money, etc. Lily was less than excited. She was worried about the bike rides, and hates germs so camping isn’t her favorite. The thing that kept her excited was the opportunity she wanted to take to do baptisms for the dead in the St. George temple. So she invited her friend Bailey Peterson and I to join her. We went first thing on Saturday morning. When we got back to camp the crew was getting ready to head out for another bike ride on bearclaw poppy trail. I stayed back at camp and relaxed/organized a bit while Bailey and Lily hid candy on the rocks for an Easer Hunt. When all returned we let the kids find the candy. The older kids were able hunt for 5 – $1 bills and 1- $20. Owen was the one to ride the $20. In the afternoon, the Lance Parker family left for home and we – along with Puzey fam, made the drive to Zion’s National Park and in hopes to climb Angel’s Landing. Each of us made it to the scout lookout, but only the oldest kids and Stephen summited. It sure is a beautiful world that we live in! As were were driving back to St. George, Stephen started wondering about the idea of staying on a hotel that night so we could get him back to the airport on Sunday in time for his flight to Austin TX. After a long debate, we decided to take Casey up on his offer to stay in their hotel room. haha! So we got creative and made some interesting sleeping arrangements. Mason shared a bed with Stephen and I. Lily slept by Ashlyn on a hide-away bed and Olivia, JT and Ellie slept on the floor. What a great family to make memories with! So funny and truly gracious.
We were able to wake up and head out of town right on schedule! It was Easter Sunday, so I made a few things for us to discuss and talk about as we drove to feel like we experienced church and took time to honor the glorious truth that Jesus Christ is Risen! Stephen made it to the airport in fact ahead of schedule and the rest of us came home unloaded the car and ran off to the Parker Family Easter party at John and Michelle’s home. What a fast and furious weekend full of unforgettable memories and beauty!