this is the third and final post of photos from our trip home to utah this summer. phew. i hope you have enjoyed them so far.
day eight: we ventured out to one of my dads very favorite places in the entire world, NPS. this is a salvage and freight recovery company that sells all kinds of stuff for super cheap - basically lost or damaged shipping (UPS, etc) boxes from every company imaginable all loaded into a huge warehouse and then liquidated. we found a lot of fun items, but these santa skull vans were by far the best find. they were brand new, they fit alanna great, and they just happened to be running an extra sale on shoes the hour we were there, so we got them for nearly nothing. score!
after NPS, we took an afternoon drive about an hour away to cascade springs. we love it up there, and it was beautiful, as always.
every so often these two seem to really, truly love each other. it is always short lived though ;)
jumping for joy!
alanna with her grandpa jim
malcolm with my dad...
and my mom
me and my daughter
three generations of hart ladies
my mom took this photo of us before we headed back down the mountain. when she emailed it to me, i laughed so hard. i just love all of our strange expressions, i'm sure because we were all talking when it was snapped. what a great, real, family photo.
i was shocked and impressed to see this vw bus parked in the lot since the drive up the canyon to get to the spring is a bit of a climb. then i watched the owners get in and zoom away.
we took a dirt backroad home, down toward midway and heber valley, instead of heading out the way we had come in. wow, what a view!
alanna enjoyed it from the roof of the car!
utah is such a beautifully scenic state, i often miss living there. it was really nice to be able to enjoy this time with my kids and my folks.
and what better way to end such a great day, than with breakfast for dinner at vertical diner?! it was perfect.
day nine: the kids and i met up with a few friends at liberty park to ride rides and play in the water. malcolm had a blast playing with my friend katie's boys elijah and isaac. they were totally wild together! we also got to meet my friend nichole's darling little girl gwendolyn. i've known these two ladies for nearly twenty years, and i love that we are all mothers now. i wish we lived closer, because i think these kids would be such great friends.
on the ferris wheel :)
after the park we met up with another old friend of mine named katie. well, my very first friend ever, to be exact. katie and i were childhood bff's since before i can remember and we truly had so much fun together growing up. i am amazed by these next two photos, of katie and i with our beautiful daughters. i had alanna at sixteen, and katie has just had her very first baby this year, the same year that my daughter will be turning sixteen. that blows my mind a little.
katie and keaton, me and alanna
this baby is so stinkin' cute and has such a sweet disposition. i loved meeting her and visiting with her mom. i think it is so great that katie was able to have her first child at this age. she is at such a great place in her life, and i would be lying if i didn't say that i am a little envious. i have no regrets about my life or how i became a mother, but i do know that it would have been so much easier if i would have waited. i hope with all my heart that my own daughter will be able to experience life to the fullest, before having a family of her own.
malcolm had so much fun spending time with his cousin hunter while we were in town. my parents own the house next to theirs (which used to be my grandparents home), and my cousin tod and his family rent it from them. tod has three children close in age to alanna, hunter is their youngest. malcolm thinks he is a teenager, so he felt like he fit right in over there. the boys spent a lot of time together and even now malcolm often talks about "his friend hunter in utah". he really felt a connection to him, and told me that he wished hunter was his brother. this made me so happy, but it also makes me sad. it is a shame we all live so very far apart.
malcolm and hunter filling up water balloons in the front yard
that evening we got together as a family, all of us, for chinese dinner out. after the meal we went to my brother bradley's house and spent some time chatting out in his back yard.
brad built this shed by hand from scratch using scrap wood and random components he had collected. he never ceases to amaze me. his house and yard belong in a magazine.
our family, minus my husband
malcolm enjoying his uncle brad's vintage smurfs toys
on our last day in salt lake city malcolm was sick. like throwing up all over the foyer/mom's new car, sick. it was so sad. thankfully i was able to run a few errands with natalie and alanna while malcolm stayed home with my mom. and thankfully by the evening he was feeling better. i think something he ate the day before made him ill, so once it was out of his system, he was back to normal.
we explored around my father's junkyard for a while. it brought back so many awesome memories from my childhood and youth. the disco shack sure has seen better days though :(
mama cat has a mini-me!
we flew home early the morning of june fourteenth. leaving is always so bittersweet. i never really want vacations to end, and i am always sad to say goodbye to my family in utah, but i was happy to be heading home to danny. i am so very grateful to my mom and dad, for making this visit possible. i love and miss you guys like crazy. please come visit soon.