Utah Trip 2017

Midway through the year we discovered that Brian would need to be on service over the holidays, and so we wouldn’t be able to visit family between Christmas and New Year’s.

So, we decided to use the vacation time on a second surprise vacation to Utah! Here are the highlights:

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On the day of our long drive, we alllllways plan to have dinner at the Pizza Pie Cafe with the Newey grandparents. Sometimes it’s the only thing that gets us through the drive. Funny thing is that my sister does the exact same thing when she visits.
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We were lucky enough that cousins June & Emmy could come along, too!
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Playing in Grandma’s fairy garden with Pokemon
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My parents had bought a ton of glow sticks on clearance after July 4th, and we lit them all up. I experimented with the shutter speed on my phone camera to take some long-exposure shots. Very fun.
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I spelled “love” with my glow stick. I had to do it very fast and backwards for it to work.
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Eleanor and June connected a whole bunch of glowsticks into a big long streamer and then we played jump-rope.
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We went down to Provo the next day for Aunt Caitlin’s birthday. She had an amazing chocolate cake and several flavors of homemade ice cream, including sour cream & onion ice cream, which tastes far better than it sounds.
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After the brief stay in Provo, we headed down to Cedar City for the Shakespeare Festival. Of course we had to stop in Beaver for ice cream.

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For our first meal in Cedar City we headed straight back to our favorite cafe, the French Spot. I love this place so much that I think I had backup almond croissants or macarons in my bag the entire time I was there.
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Great Grandma Shirts was able to come along with us. She got to spend an evening with the family telling stories about her childhood, it was great!
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And of course we had tarts before and after the plays. We saw Midsummer Night’s Dream (fabulous 1920s production design), Treasure Island, Guys & Dolls, Romeo & Juliet, and Eleanor and I saw As You Like It.
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Watching the greenshow
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Eleanor and getting ready to watch As You Like It
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We had several meals at the local Sizzler. This was my kids’ first time at an all-you-can-eat buffet type restaurant, and William got very creative with the soft serve machine.
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More time with Great Grandma. Funny, my parents came down for this trip, too, but somehow I didn’t take any pictures of them?? Sorry, Mom & Dad.
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We spent another day in Provo after the festival. We got to play games with Caitlin and take Jeff & Ella to the temple.
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We also got to go out to eat with Michael, Natalie & Caitlin. It was so wonderful for Michael & Natalie to come down from Colorado to visit us!
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The kids were over the moon to finally meet their new baby cousin Ian.

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We spent the next day in Salt Lake. Eleanor went golfing with Brian, Grandpa Newey, and Uncle Erich. I took the other kids out to breakfast with Grandma and Uncle Patrick.
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After breakfast we went to the Utah Museum of Natural History and saw the cool Vikings traveling exhibit.
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Katie got to dig for dinosaurs, too.
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We met up with Eleanor, Grandpa and Brian at the Clark Planetarium downtown. I think this was an exhibit about crazy weather on other planets.

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Katie loved this tornado simulator. She stood in it for hours, pretending that she could command the weather. She had the most serious look on her face, waving her arms to make the wind and mist appear and reappear. She asked Grandpa to join her for a demonstration of her powers.
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After the planetarium, I spent a glorious hour shopping around at Day Murray Music before heading to a barbecue with the Plethora. We have so many kids now! 
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Grownups chillin’ and catching up. This was the first time we had a gang of teenagers slouching about the kitchen, not quite knowing what to do with themselves
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All the grownups!
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Our attempt at a picture with all the kids. I think the teenagers refused to be part of this.

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That evening we headed back up to West Point to get ready for the end of our Utah adventure — watching the total solar eclipse in Eastern Idaho! More on that in the next post.

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