Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Coronado 2010

We are so in love with this tradition.  This was our 8th year in a row coming to the Hotel Del Coronado for the 4th of July.
I love how beyond excited the kids are each year as we get ready for this trip.  They can't wait to do all the fun things we always do here, and see all their friends that we sometimes don't ever see except here.  They talk about it all year long!  I love traditions.  And this is a really fun one!

The kids love to play games in the lobby, in fact most of my kids would say it's their favorite thing about this trip.  They can get pretty rowdy, especially when the little ones are running around & going up & down in the elevator.  I swear, they're going to kick us out one of these times!

Baby Caroline is 8 weeks now and sleeping through the night most nights (big yay!!!).  I was worried about having all of us in one room, but it actually turned out just fine. Total surprise. I was geared up for a nightmare.
Everyone wanted to hold Caroline, so she was passed around all day long.  I hardly held her the whole trip!  Now I'm paying for it.  She's totally spoiled.  But looked so cute in her little stars & stripes swimsuit that she could barely squeeze into!

And then there's the jacuzzi.
It's a big kid magnet.  They're constantly going back & forth between the beach & the jacuzzi all day long.  This is how it usually looks.  Full of kids.  Most of them our group's kids.  Gus would be perfectly happy in there all day long.  In fact, I honestly started to wonder if it could be bad for his health.....
I can't go in jacuzzi's any more.  Ever since my brother-in-law called them 'genitalia stew'.
The last day we were there, somebody thought it would be fun to dump some shampoo in the jacuzzi.......
It may, or may not have been one of these sweet faces here.........

But, man, did these kids have a blast in the huge bubblebath!!!

I'm sure the management totally hates us!
Something new this year was the Human Rubberband.  It was so funny watching the guys do it.
Indy had some great odds with this group.  Poor thing was stuck having to hang out with all these cute girls.
Such a bummer.

I can't believe how old all our kids are getting.
  It seems like just yesterday we were sitting on the beach saying, "Won't that be weird when we have all these teenagers?!"  And here we are! 
It happened so fast!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Sandcastle

A few years ago, we hired a professional sandcastle builder.......yes there is such a teach the kids how to build a cool sandcastle.  Well, we took notes and did it ourselves the following year, and continue to increase our sandcastle skills each year. So, I don't mean to brag, but I think we really out-did ourselves this time.

Denny was the foreman of the project and brought most of the supplies........plywood, drill, real shovels, real buckets, trowels, water pump!
OK, so we get a little into it and us adults do probably most of the work.....not that we don't let the kids help fact, some of the kids are definitely more into it than others.  Notice that you don't see any of my kids actually helping with the sandcastle.  Gus doesn't count because he doesn't actually help. Max was working on his own sand projects.  Marlee was doing whatever she wanted to do with all the girls because she's "practically an adult now". I don't really know what Zane was doing.  And I hardly ever saw Jake because he was running around with all the guys, hanging out in the jacuzzi and charging smoothies to our room.
 But here's how our sandcastle progressed throughout the day.  And it really is more like sand carving.
 And was so much fun. 
Ta Da!!!!

I don't know what we're going to do next year to top this baby!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Our Fabulous Fourth

This was the best Fourth of July yet!
Especially since Gus didn't get lost this time.
Here's how it went down.
It was Sunday, so our whole group descended upon the poor Imperial Beach ward & probably close to doubled its' size.  Jake & Max P. helped out with passing the sacrament.  They were such good sports.  I was really proud.  And the Primary President was really glad that we weren't all staying for 2nd & 3rd hours with our 40+ kids!
After church we hung out by the pool mostly, and most of the kids played games in the lobby, until it was time to get ready for the fireworks.

The annual group shot

The Oklands, the Brians, the Heatons, the Pothiers, Us, the Tanners, the Garns, the Barneys, the Christensens, and the VerHaarens.

My goal this year was to be in as few pictures as possible, what with the post-partum pudge & all, but I got stuck having to be in the group shots. Oh, well.  Such a great group of people. I dig them all.  And the kids all dig each other.
We are just so lucky to have such great friends!
the girls
the guys


I couldn't believe we took this family picture before we realized that we didn't even have everybody!  Max is missing, and somebody else had to point it out to us.  I think I'm losin' it.

And some more family shots.....
I wish I had gotten one of everyone.

the Garns

the Heatons

the Barneys

the Pothiers

the VerHaarens

And more pictures..........

Then we head across the street to the golf course for the best view of the fireworks.

Caroline, on her way to her first fireworks.

We haul a sound system & generator, along with our blankets, pizza & pop, down to the golf course.  Somehow we end up on the same patch of grass every year.

When it starts to get dark, it's time to break out the glow stuff!
Pizza, music, friends, glow stuff, human rubberbands, perfectly cool weather...
Did I mention how super fun this is?

Then it's all topped off with a spectacular fireworks show.....
........Gives me goosebumps every time.

Can't wait til next year.

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