Friday, November 2, 2012

Zion National Park Vacation (Part 1)

During Fall Break at Caleb's school, the five of us joined my parents and my brother's family at Zion National Park for a whole-family vacation!  We planned this almost a year ago, and everything was even better than Dad promised it would be :)  The villa was gorgeous and huge, Zion National Park was the perfect playground for our kids, and we didn't see so much as the scat of a bear!  The weather was nice,  a little cold first thing in the morning, but in the 60's during the most active part of the day.  I liked it because I never broke a sweat in all the miles of hiking we did.

Despite the fact that our travel took us through all four of the continental U.S. time zones, the kids did remarkably well.  They were tired the whole week (I had to get up with at least one kid by 5:00 am every day), but they were only mildly whiny and still had a great time.  Caleb had the hardest time with the lack of sleep because  he needs more sleep than Ethan does, and he can almost never catch up during the day, so his tolerance level for frustration just stayed a little low all week.  Ethan did great, rolling with the 5:00 am wakings and catching a nap when he could.  Lydia got enough sleep, but she cut her first molar the day we got back and was struggling with a cold the whole week, so she spent quite a bit more time being unhappy than is usual for her.  All the kids loved playing in the backyard with their cousins, and Caleb and Ethan loved all the hikes and exploratory trips that we took them on.

Aunt Jennifer and the boys hanging out in the backyard of the villa.

Jasper (far left), Bennett, Ethan & Caleb

Another shot of the villa's backyard, with a better view of the beautiful desert/mountain formations all over Zion.

Ethan looking cute and contemplative. 

Ethan throwing rocks in the Virgin River, the main body of water the park and the "creator" of Zion canyon.

Our most exciting wildlife sighting: a squirrel that stole a granola bar from my brother's backpack :)

All of us taking a break during a hike, completely unaware that we were being profiled by a squirrel.

We took a day trip the Grand Canyon. 

This picture is at the end of short hike out to Bright Angel Point. The path was treacherous enough that I left Lydia back with her Papa.

Mom and Dad, after her hike out to Bright Angel Point.

The four cousins showing off their muscles. Youngest to oldest: Jasper, Ethan, Bennett, Caleb

Lydia. Just to prove she was there :). We did leave her back at the villa a lot with Nanna, but both she and Nanna had a great time hanging out.

Family shot at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon 


Erin Goddard said...

I just realized that you follow my blog!!! So fun! I'll have to follow you as well. You have a beautiful family, Andrea! Miss you

Brian Head said...

Utah is home to some of the best national parks in the world. The beautiful rocky landscape is enough for any man to admire.

Brian Head