Sunday, July 21, 2013

Exertion, Relaxation, Education

The morning following our YakiSherry Family Reunion Birch and I hoped on a plane and flew into Las Vegas.  The first half of the week was spent with some of our favorite people EVER...the Cox and Christison Families in Ceder City, UT.  The second half was spent in the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas.  We flew into Vegas totally exhausted from some intense weeks prior.  Between Birch being called Bishop and hosting the family reunion we were wiped out!  The timing was perfect for us to have a little getaway.

 Kolob Canyons was our first stop after renting our little car for the weekend.  There we met up with the Cox and Christison (Brooke's parents) bunch.  This was my first time to Zions National Park and it was breathtaking!

 Can't get enough of this guy!
 That night we had the best time ever with this crazy bunch! 
Our kids were super duper jealous that we got to finally see the Christison's Ceder City cabin that we've all heard about so much.  It did not disappoint.  We just LOVE THIS FAMILY!
 After some real brainwashing I consented to hike Angel's Landing in Zions with Birch, Brooke, and her dad, Earl.  By this time my elevation headache had gone away from the day before and we hit the trail with jerky, trail mix, and lots of water around 8 am.  The hike is 2.4 miles of intense switchbacks.
 The hike was a piece of cake for Birch...well, he acted tired and thirsty a few times just to make me feel better about myself.  This part of the hike was just a killer called Walter's Wiggles, a series of 21 steep switchbacks.  It was brutal to the ol' knees.
 Spending the day with Brooke and Earl was just wonderful.  The conversation was delightful and doing something together like this was special as we've talked for years about doing it...we always thought Mark would be there with us in person not spirit, though.
 Just when we thought we were about to die we got to Scouts Lookout.  It was a beautiful site! 
 We rested for about a half an hour and ate some food and tried to rehydrate ourselves.  Brooke isn't much for heights and decided to sit out the last grueling half a mile to the top.
 I had to have a picture next to this sign because the main reason I decided to even go on this hike was that the night before I had read it was a "moderate" hike. was hard, really hard.  So when I saw this sign on Scouts Lookout testifying that it is a "strenuous" hike I needed to have it documented.
 Scouts Lookout
 Once energized we started out on the last half a mile.  The terrain is rocky and Wikipedia says, "strenuous and littered with sharp drop offs and narrow paths. Chains to grip are provided for portions of the last half-mile to the top at 5,790 feet."
 You can do it Sara!
 While I could barley feel my legs anymore, Birch was jumping around like a wild kangaroo.
 We did it!!!!  What a workout and oh so worth it!!!

 The trek down was pretty tough.  It was SUPER hot by then and our drinking water that was left was so warm it was barely palatable but spending the time with three of my favorite people made it all bearable!
 Once we got back to the cabin we were tuckered out for the evening.  Birch read up on Bishop training stuff and I gorged myself in Melba's (Brooke's mom) delicious food.  Melba treated us to the best all weekend!!  I've decided the Christison's are the best hosts!!  Our room was so comfy and our tummies were happy all weekend!
 The next day we headed for a short hike to Cascade Falls on Cedar Mountain with the whole Christison clan.
 Love this friend!
 On the way back to the cabin we stopped at Cedar Breaks.  It was absolutely gorgeous!!!
 That evening Birch and I went on a short 4-wheel drive together with Brooke. Later Birch went out with Mason (Brooke's brother) for a more intense crazy ride.

We had such a WONDERFUL time with the Christison's and can't wait to bring our family back to see the amazing sites we saw and experienced first hand!
 Wednesday morning we got up early and drove to St. George, UT to go the temple before driving back to Las Vegas.  The temple was gorgeous.

Next stop...VEGAS!!!  This was my first time to Vegas.  The conference that Birch was attending was held in the Red Rock Resort which was actually about a half an hour away from the strip.  We didn't have a car while we were in Vegas so we never ended up going to the strip.  From what I hear we didn't miss much.  The conference fulfilled the continuing education hours that Birch needed to be in compliance with his physical therapy license.
While Birch was tucked away in a conference room all day I was laying in my bed reading and reading some more.

Then when I got chilled I would lay by the pools and read some more.  It was a tough few days for me.
 When I got tired of reading (and laying around) I would walk across the street and shop at Ross, Marshalls, or Costco.  I had fun putting together our family outfits for our upcoming family picture.
 The evenings flew by as we would enjoy some time by the pool together and then walk to a nearby restaurant for dinner.

 Ahhh...I could get used to this!

 They closed the pools at 7pm -- isn't that crazy??!!

We had a wonderful time together (and apart).  Birch enjoyed his classes and I relished each minute hanging out with ME.  I'm so thankful that we've been able to have a week get-away each year for the past nine years.  It's been so good for our marriage and such a boost for my sanity.  A big shout out for all our Spokane family that watched the kids all week!!!!

1 comment:

MaryJane said...

What a Great trip! Now Don wants to go to Zion...I nixed the hike though!