Our Thanksgiving trip was, in a word, FABULOUS. We didn't do anything grand or exciting...although being with family is rather grand and exciting! I guess that's the crux of the issue: we really just enjoyed being together! Family = fun. I haven't laughed so much in a really long time! That might just have to be a separate post.
Cousin play time was a precious commodity that couldn't be wasted! We arranged for as much of that as possible! And the kids got along famously. Whether it was at the park, a restaurant, or Granny's house, these cute kids had a great time together. You'll also notice the conspicuous absence of coats! Gotta love the Arizona winter.
Tyler, Zach, and I hit up the Turkey Trot put on by my parents' stake. It was very low-key, but we loved it! In my hasty packing job, I didn't prepare for exercise, so I ran in a lame pair of shoes and jeans, but despite my non-athletic gear (and body), the altitude advantage propelled me to the finish line. Tyler stuck with me and Zachary zoomed ahead. The race was 3.22 miles. Zachary won a pumpkin pie for guessing his finishing time almost to the second!
Our Thanksgiving feast was delightful. My dear mother hosted 25 guests, seating half in the kitchen and half in the living room. I thoroughly enjoyed being with nearly all of my siblings (missed you, Eric and Jen!) and their spouses and children. My aunt and uncle from California were also present, along with four of their kids, two of whom live near my parents. What a fun, loud, happy, messy crowd!
I was super excited to spend time with this delightful friend. Some good quality time really filled my emotional tank! I'm so lucky that Melanie moved close to my family. Visits to Mesa are even sweeter now!
On Saturday night Granny and Gramps joined us on a tour of the Mesa Arizona Temple grounds, which were beautifully decorated with Christmas lights. We "oohed" and "ahhed" and pushed through quite a crowd. Many of us visited the port-a-potties. Gavin decided to wet his pants while riding on Garry's shoulders.
The next morning we hit the road to Colorado. I always struggle with patience on the long drive home, but Garry's always-even keel was such a good influence that day! We ran into snow in Flagstaff and on and off throughout New Mexico. The roads were dry again in Albuquerque, but the snow started up in Pueblo, just an hour south of home. We stopped for dinner in Pueblo, entertaining the few employees working at Wendy's. We were loud and crazy and rather disheveled, but it was the perfect pit stop before the final stretch of highway. We pulled into our garage around 10:00 p.m., thrilled to be home, but satisfied with a successful trip.