Spring Break in St. George: Part I

4.02.2018

Spring Break!!!  I'd only been counting down the days for weeks.  A trip to the sunshine with only play and exploration with my boys on the agenda just could not come soon enough!  And it was such a blast.

Last year, on our couples trip to St. George, Utah, Bron and I determined that we wanted to take our boys down there during Spring Break 2018.  We knew they'd enjoy swimming and exploring and possibly even biking around the unique red rock.  The idea sounded so fun!  Reality, however, proved to be a mixed bag.  If I'm being honest, our week long family vacation in St. George had its fair share of stress and crazy and a few heated words, but ultimately, I think fun and good memories won out.  I mean, I'd totally do it again!  Above all, the sunshine just felt good.

So to keep things real and make sure I didn't forget what traveling with three little boys was really like, I kept an ongoing list on my phone of our daily "un-adventrues" in St. George, Utah.


Daily Un-Adventures to Remember While Vacationing with Kids:

1.  Conrad screamed for an entire hour straight on our drive just because he was angry about being strapped into his car seat.  He would not be deterred by any amount of food or toys.  He was simply just plain pissed.  So we turned up the radio.

2.  I swore Conrad was going to fall to his death because his little head and body could fit through the railing outside our second story condo we rented.  Bummer.  It meant that when we were outside on the patio, I couldn't relax.  It also meant that the doors had to remain closed at all times when we were inside the condo = no fresh Spring breeze!

3.  I insisted on bringing a baby gate to keep Conrad out of the kitchen.  I also brought his booster seat for eating, or to basically keep him from toppling off the chair and onto the tile.  Third time mom instincts are da bomb!  Bringing those extra items really made our lives in the condo ten times easier.

4.  Tyke didn't come on vacation with us.  It meant I was the one who had to clean up all the leftover food droppings around Conrad's seat.  I really missed the dog!

5.  Levi threw up three times our first night there.  He soiled three beds.  The good news is that there were two sets of bunk beds in the bedroom he and Jed were sharing, so Levi just moved from one bed to the next throughout the night.  The other sweet silver lining is that there was a washer and dryer inside the condo with a Costco sized container of laundry soap.

6.  Another night, Jed threw up twice and took out two beds!  You guys, one of my least favorite jobs is putting sheets on bunk beds and I did it so many times while on vacation.  Ugh.

7.  While I left the boys alone to change into my swimming suit, Jed and Levi began wrestling.  Jed split the skin on his forehead clean open just above his eye.  Bron "fixed" it with super glue and a butterfly bandage.

8.  We kept wondering why the air conditioning wouldn't stay on.  Oh, it's because every time Levi ran down the hallway, he twisted the Nest thermometer!  Little stink.

9.  One of our older sons had a poop accident at the park.

10.  Conrad was cutting not one, not two, but THREE teeth!  No wonder he was cranky.

11.  The chant heard on repeat by Jed and Levi: "I farted.  It tickled.  So I did it again."  Honestly, it made me giggle.

12.  Poor Conrad was nearly eaten alive by red ants!  Okay, that's an exaggeration.  He was playing in some red dirt before one of our hikes and when I placed him in the backpack carrier, he began to scream and cry.  That's when I noticed a red ant underneath his chin.  I quickly swiped off the offending ant and assumed that was it.  But a minute into our hike, Conrad was still acting uncomfortable.  I immediately knew he had ants in his pants!  So my friends Shelly and Amy helped me strip Conrad down completely naked to get rid of probably a dozen of those pesky little bugs.  Poor baby was in tears.

13.  The boys took off on their bikes and had so much fun riding around the condominium complex that we lost them!

14.  We waited in line to enter Zion's National Park for 90 minutes with a 16 month old.  It one word, it was torture.  I have never in my life seen that place so packed with people!  It was actually disappointing because, for me, the crowds took away from the sheer grandeur of the place.  Jed and Levi weren't impressed either.  Oh well.  Just another one of those parenting flops.  You know, the ones where you are so excited to show your child this awesome thing but the experience falls flat on its face.  Yeah, that's pretty much what happened in Zion's on Sunday.

15.  Jed whined and cried all through his very first mountain bike ride.  He could physically do it, the problem was all in his head.  So we turned around and went back to the truck.  Fortunately, Jed turned his attitude around and made his second trail ride a true success!  It was a proud moment for both Bron and me and a confidence booster for Jed that he really can do whatever hard things he puts his mind to!

16.  Jed had an allergic reaction to something!  To this day I still have no idea what it was.  All I remember is looking over and noticing that his entire face seemed swollen!  Luckily, (and probably not luck at all) I felt impressed to pack some children's Benadryl.    



I think that adequately sums up the chaos!  Now lets get to highlight reel.

On our way South on Thursday March 22nd, we stopped at Grandma Smith's house for lunch in Orem, Utah.  She fed us a delicious spread of salads and meat and veggies and dessert.  Of course!  Then she got down on the floor and played with her great-grandchildren.  How many 80 year old women do you know who do that?!  Grandma is hands-down one of the best people I know.  Every cell and fiber of her being just oozes love.  We love her so much!

P.S.  In case you're wondering whatever happened to Conrad's face, he tripped and fell on the cement.  Boo.  But he's resilient!


We made it down to our rented condo that night and thus began our week long adventure in St. George, Utah!

^^Lunch in the condo.  Conrad couldn't get enough broccoli dipped in Ranch dressing.^^
^^The big boys just chilling outside on the patio while Conrad napped one afternoon.^^

It seemed like half of the state of Idaho was visiting St. George during Spring Break.  Indeed, we actually spent time with a few of our friends!  Bron and his buddies hit up a bike expo on Friday and Saturday.  They had the time of their lives riding new bikes and new trails.  Meanwhile, the boys and I hung out with Shelly Stanger, Bri Stanger, and Amy Raiger and their crew of kids.  

Our first adventure: Thunder Junction!  Wow, this park was incredible.  We spent hours there, more than once!  There were countless toys and slides to play on, a splash pad complete with waterfalls, and a real miniature train!  It was a kids' paradise.  Seriously, I feel like my kids are at the best ages.  They're still little enough to be easily entertained and yet Jed and Levi are independent enough to be let loose on a long leash.     

^^Crazy shirtless Levi, teaching his baby brother how to do water play right.^^
^^*Swoon* He still needs me.^^
^^Drying off in the warm sunshine.^^
^^Jed and Levi ready for their first train ride around the park!  Excited doesn't even begin to describe how they felt.^^
^^As usual, picking on his brother a bit.  Conrad is going to be one tough kid!^^
^^My water baby.  Conrad looooved the splash park.  He hardly ventured anywhere else.^^
^^Hair dip!^^
^^Here he is punching and fighting the water.^^
^^Jed's wrestling wound documented. (See Un-Adventure #7.)^^

The next day, we joined Shelly and Amy and their gang again for an epic child friendly hike to see over 400 dinosaur tracks set into the red rock.  Wow!  We were all pretty fascinated, adults included!  (See Un-Adventure #12  for the story on how poor Conrad literally had ants in his pants!) 

^^A good portion of our crazy crew: Jed, Easton, Carson, Ryan, Briley, Lorren, Levi, Daniel, and Kendra.^^
^^Nothing to see here.  Just boys playing in the red dirt.^^
^^Yay!  Here I am too.  Conrad makes one pretty cute hiking buddy.^^
^^Kids exploring.^^
^^That one in a million selfie (with my big girl camera) alongside my baby boy.  Looking forward to more hikes together this summer!^^
^^Touching a REAL dinosaur track!  Kinda surreal to think about.^^
^^Jed checking out the size difference.  It's a bit humbling!^^
^^Carson walking in a dinosaur's footsteps.  That's quite a gait!^^
^^More dirt play.  Haha.  All boy!^^
^^Picnic lunch in the back of the truck = contained chaos.^^

When in St. George, a stop at Nielsen's Frozen Custard for dessert (or lunch or dinner or just because) is a must!  We stopped there twice this trip.  And it was absolutely delicious both times.  I recommend a raspberry concrete or a lemon flavored concrete with toasted coconut.  Both flavors are 'get-in-my-belly now' delectable.


We went swimming in the condominium complex heated pools every single day of our vacation.  We had access to two different outdoor pools and enjoyed each one to its fullest.  On this particular afternoon, Bron was out riding his bike and Conrad was taking a long nap, so I enjoyed a relaxing hour or so swimming with just Jed and Levi!  The boys asked if we could move to St. George because swimming in sixty degree weather under palm trees was simply a dream!  I agreed.  If only there were more cows for Bron to work with.

^^Our daily walk to the pool.^^
^^View from my dry and sunny chair.  I joined them in the water just a minute later.^^

Trip highlight not pictured: Our family half day spent playing at the Washington City Aquatic Center.  It was incredible and so much fun!  Bron and I enjoyed spending a fair amount of time playing on two different play sets with slides and a gigantic dump bucket alongside all three boys.  I'm not sure how many times we went around the lazy river that circled around in the sunshine and lost count of how many times we careened down the three story hydro tube slide, but I know it will forever go down in memory as one of our favorite days of our entire trip.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love hearing from you! Your little notes make my day.