People and Places

Monday, June 1, 2009

We returned home on Friday from an eleven day journey to see family and friends. On the way there (and back), we also visited some fun places.
Our trip started out early on an early Monday morning. The kids were bright-eyed (and Rosemary was, too!). Grace enjoyed having Rosemary on her lap, but most of the time, Rosie sat up front with me (so much for taking her along as entertainment for the kids!! LOL).

We stopped along the way in Sioux Falls, SD. The hotel that we stayed in had a water slide. Sorry that I didn't get any pictures of that. The kids had a great time, and it was a good break in the middle of all of that driving.
We arrived in East Grand Forks, MN in the late afternoon on Tuesday. We hung out with Grandma and Grandpa, visited the library (we can't go long without a good supply of books!) and played outside.
Late Thursday night, the cousins arrived. Our kids were already asleep, so they didn't get to see the cousins until Friday morning. Grace met her cousin, Selah (who is also 4 years old) after she awoke in the morning. Grace instantly took Selah's hand and started showing her where Selah's pictures were on the walls of Grandma's house. Then, Grace decided that Selah needed her nails painted.

Cousin Kiah and Grace had a good time together, as well. The older cousins are all so wonderful and kind to their younger cousins.

Here's Kendra, getting her hair done by Grace. I know that you're all standing in line for an appointment to have this incredible style done to your own hair!

Adam enjoyed playing frisbee with his cousin, Cole. Look at that jump-over-the-fence catch!

Yana and Lily, hanging out with Selah (love the mei mei shirt!).

Being silly with Cole and his sweet girlfriend, Kelsey.

On Friday morning, after spending a little more time with my sister, Stephanie, and her kids, David and I drove five hours to visit with some high school friends of mine in Minneapolis.
From the left: Kristen, her husband and 6 adorable kiddos live in sunny Arizona. I haven't seen Krsiten for almost 20 years! She also homeschools her kids and she told me that she regularly reads our blog (but never leaves a comment!! maybe this time... :) ). Next is Julie. She is a newlywed of only one year. We're sitting on Julie's patio in this picture. She and her husband, Tomkin, were great hosts for this afternoon picnic. They are both so upbeat and fun! I'm next in the photo, and my friend, Heidi, is on the end at the right. Heidi and I have been friends since the first grade! We laughed a lot about our childhood antics. We loved to play that we were destitute children (go figure...we never pretended to be rich! LOL!). Heidi is pregnant with her third child. His name is Joshua.

A picture of the newlyweds.

Back at the Grandparent's homefront, the kids were doing great. We called on Saturday morning and Grace was just fine (it was the first time that we have left her overnight). I was glad that she had done so well, but thought that she'd miss us a bit more!!! So, when we were driving home on Saturday, and my sister (Angela) called to tell me that Grace was really sad (crying hard) and wanted her mommy, I was a little teeny tiny bit relieved (you adoptive parents will know what I mean here). She jumped into my arms when we walked in the door. That was good for this mama's heart.

The cousins and my sister, Stephanie, had left on Saturday. But, my sister, Angela arrived shortly after they left. Here she is, with all of the kids.

Girls always love Aunt Angela, because she plays dress-up with them, paints their nails, etc. Here is Yana in an old bridesmaid dress and Grace in another dress.

Neighbor, Hannah, and Lily in old prom dresses.

We had a beautiful day on Wednesday, and made the best of it at a park close by. Grandma, Lily and Grace enjoy walking through a flower garden.

Grace, on the swing. She just learned to pump herself, and was very proud of her accomplishment. This picture was taken pre-accident. A few minutes later, she fell off the swing and ended up with a big scrape on her chin and a cut inside her mouth.

We left Grandma and Grandpa's house on Thursday, and headed across South Dakota. We stopped at Wall Drug. The kids loved it! Here are Jadon, Grace and Yana on the Wall Drug Railroad.

Lily, on the back of a covered wagon.

Chief Adam.

Hey! Who's that strange looking squaw?!

A friendly man offered to take a family photo. Thanks so much to friendly people!

We spent the night in Rapid City. Every year we think that we are going to visit Mount Rushmore, but we never do. This year, we finally decided that we were going to do it. On Friday morning, we walked around Rapid City to see all of the statues of the presidents.
Here are the kids, David and Rosemary with Calvin Coolidge.

Grace, with John F. Kennedy's son.

After the "Walk of Presidents," we visited Storybook Island. Grace LOVED it. The other kids had fun too. Here they are on Noah's Ark.

Next, we visited Dinasaur Park. Adam climbs up! We had hot dogs (not a mom favorite) for lunch at the park. The kids thought that it was great!!!

Finally, we visited Mount Rushmore. Adam had read a couple of books about Mount Rushmore and was filling us in on all of the interesting facts.

We're so grateful that we could take this trip. It was fun to see so many interesting places, and especially good to see so many wonderful people. We truly were blessed on this little journey.


Julie Coleman, Freelance Editor said...

Sarah, what a treat it was to see you again after all these years! And it was a pleasure to meet David, as well. I really enjoyed the time you, Kristen, Heidi, and I got to spend together. Thank you so much for making the trip! I hope it won't be another 17 years before we see each other again. :-)

Kimi said...

WOWZA, what a fun trip!

I tell you, you have a beautiful family! I loved all the photos! I noticed that Lily is really growing up...she is gorgous! And that Grace....she cracks me up...does she keep you all constantly in stitches?

Love you,

Kristin said...

Wow - what a great family trip! There's nothing better than time with family & friends. Thanks for sharing all the photos too.

Gwen said...

Wow, what a fun trip! Such great pictures! My brother and his family went to Mt Rushmore last year and said there were lots of fun things to do all thru that area. Who knew?
Now that I've seen your pictures, I want to go there, too! ;)

Jennifer O'Cain said...

Fun times! Loved the pictures!

Patientlywaiting said...

Looks like a good time was had by all. I would love to go to the Black Hills some day! Visiting with family is the best!


Kim said...

Looks like you guys had a terrific trip! We would someday like to take the kiddos on a trip to see as many historic monuments as we can. You have a beautiful family!
Kim S(momma to six chili peppers)

Jill and Rick said...

Wow, it looks like you guys had an awesome trip! I love all the pictures.

Our family would really enjoy a little getaway this year, but I'm afraid it will have to wait.


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