Monday, August 31, 2009

2009 Vest Family Reunion - July 23rd through July 28, 2009

Fiesta Days is such a perfect time to hold our annual Vest Family Reunion.

We watched the parade from our usual sight on Main and 4th North and then in the afternoon went to the pavillion above the reservoir for the annual Binks Family Picnic. It was a yummy pot luck dinner with everyone bringing KFC and a potluck item. It was fun riding in the canoe and playing in the sand for the kids and of course just visiting.
It was so fun to have Tammy, Richard and Katie here from Ohio to help us celebrate.
"Singin in the Rain" was the city production this summer.
Michael Carrasco was the lead and it was so fun. The kids (even Cooper) had a great time. The funnest part was when they kicked real water on the first couple of rows. Cooper, Brynn, Abby and Delaney were covered with bright yellow raincoats to protect them from getting wet. They were trying harder to get wet.
The next morning we all headed down to our spot for the Fiesta Days parade and then after had a picnic at the pavillion and canoe rides for the kids.

Wade was the guide . Look at that strength!!!
The canoe was really fun for the kids to ride in at the reservoir.

The 24th of July would not be the same without the "Fiesta Days Rodeo"
Friday evening we went to the Fiesta Days Rodeo with the whole family. It was so funny to see how the kids reacted to the excitement especially Kaden, Aaron and Boston. Boston is so animated it still makes me laugh to think of it and when they are together it is so funny. They all love animals and it was hilarious to see their reactions as the events took place. After the rodeo we went home to watch the fireworks and light up our sparklers. It was a full day.
Stephen and Kaden
Boston kept Aaron totally occupied
There were a few scary moments.
They animated every move the animals made.
It was a little chilly for the girls. Cute still.

Saturday morning we all woke up early and left for Grandpa Vest's Service Project. We had decided to clean up the backyard which included taking down the grape vines and digging up the lake rocks that were buried with deep grass roots all around them. The kids were amazing. I've never seen anyone work as hard as McKenzie to complete a task. She went full steam ahead until we were finished 5 hours later. Everyone had an important job to do from hauling literally tons of rocks away to mowing the lawn, to hauling loads to the dump, to trimming down shrubs. It was such a fun project to complete together. The pictures tell the rest of the story.

Beginning to clean up Grandpa's yard
Everyone worked so hard from start to finish!

We were dressed for the occasion.
The kids did a great job of pulling all of the weeds in Grandma and Grandpa's flowerbed.

At this years reunion we decided to organize in a little different way that Billy and I felt was a huge success. We wanted to incorporate into our little reunion the ideas of fun, family, love and service. So... after much deliberating we decided that cleaning up Grandpa Vest's yard would be a great service project to work on together. Over the past 5 or 6 years Grandpa and Fred built a gazebo in the back yard. It worked for Grandpa to keep him busy when he was alive but soon became a risk and a hazard for the children in the neighborhood. So with gloves and shovels in hand we began our service project at Grandpa Vest's. The pictures tell the story. What great kids and grandkids we have. They ALL worked so hard all morning long to clear away all of the tons of rocks imbedded in the grass and within hours a miraculous project was coming to an end. We are the Vest's with the BEST kids and grandkids in the world.

This is the after picture, but it just doesn't do it justice. However, you can tell how much walking and carrying we did as you look how smooshed down the grass is.

After finish the project we quickly went back home and loaded up our van and headed to Park City to jump in the pool and for the guys to golf together at the Park City course. Every spare moment was filled with FAMILY FUN!!!

Refreshing dunk in the pool!
Annette brough all of the equipment for making bracelets and necklaces. Creativity!!!
Brynn, Delaney, McKenzie, Jenn (our creator) and Arden making placemats.
Chad and Billy giving Sunday lesson to the adults

One interesting note,
Jenn gave a beautiful primary lesson about putting on the armor of God
Brynn and Abby looking at a friendly critter (squirrel) nibbling nearby.
Emily helped the little girls make their placemats.
Manicures and pedicures. Girl fun!

Even a friendly little tennis match!
Kickball game!
Riding the gondola, over and over again!
FUN taking in the beauties of the outdoors!
Searching for our prophets!

After leaving Park City we traveled to SLC for some lunch and to have a fun little


We had a map of the cemetary that included the addresses for all of the prophets including Gordon B. Hinckley, David O. McKay, Spencer W. Kimball and many more. It also included many of the apostles who have served in the church. It was so fun when we would say '"Okay, over on that block in the left corner look for the name "Lee"' (Harold B.)
The kids would run as fast as they could and the first one to find the marker would be the winner. Then the adults would share stories they remembered about their personal lives to bring them back to life for the kids. It was really interesting even for the adults. When Wade went back to work in St. George he was telling his boss what we did and his boss replied "You did what? Most grandparents take their grandchildren to Lagoon or Disneyland and you went to the Salt Lake Cemetary?" Believe it or not it was a highlight of our trip.

The grandkids at Howard W. Hunters grave. Annette told us a great personal story about how President Hunter took care of his ailing wife and when she passed away he remarried "Inez" and she took care of him until he passed away. She was known to be a cute little lade that wore cute little hats to match her clothing. One was buried on one side and one on the other.
Joe and Amy with Abby, Isaac and Aaron at the top of Ensign Peak. Beautiful little hike.
It was a hot, hot afternoon. Abby walked most of the way then Amy gave her a ride the rest. What a trooper Amy!


Where will our reunion be for next year? Any suggestions? Love to hear them!!!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Sand Hollow Mini-Triathlon, Dance Review and Piano Recital

This last March we spent a fun weekend in St. George to watch Scott in his first mini Tri-Athlon called SPRINT located in Sand Hollow. There were thousands of participants and the weather was beautiful until we reached the Sand Hollow Resort and it was warm but a little windy. We wondered why there were several cars with kayaks on top driving away from the event. Because of the wind and the threat that the kayaks could not keep up with the swimmers the swimming portion of the race was cancelled and instead of swimming they would run a second 3.2 miles. It was such beautiful scenery. Normally they would first swim 1 mile in the Sand Hollow Reservoir then bike 12 miles and finally run a 5 K (3.2 miles). For Scott it was a bit tougher because swimming is a sport he does well in.
Numbers are written on back of legs

Scott on the first leg of the race

Scott on the second leg of the mini-triathlon

Finishing up!

The last and final leg of the race, running again because the swimming portion was cancelled due to rough windy conditions at Sand Hollow Reservoir.

Scott has a great fan club.
This next entrance is of the girls getting ready for their Dixie Review. The Vest's really know how to pack in the events over the weekend.

Delaney getting her hair done for pictures.

Mckenzie after getting her hair in a beautiful updo for dance pictures.

After the dance review we went to Jimmy Johns for ice cream. Such cute kids.

The same trip was the piano review for McKenzie and Delaney. They played beautifully. We were so proud of them that they had their piece memorized perfectly. It was awesome. They are such sweet girls. We are so proud of them.
Delaney and McKenzie at their piano recital.

McKenzie and Delaney with their dancing teacher.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Spring Break in Monterey, California 2009

Last month for Spring Break Billy and I decided to vacation in Californiato visit the grandkids and take a little side trip to Monterey, CA. Wearrived in Oakland where Amy and the kids picked us up and we went to a hotel and the kids performed for us on the ledge of the window. The curtains were a covering in front of a deep window ledge that was their stage and it was quite fun. We also had someballoons for them to shoot off in the air and they got quite a kick out of them. We also had Easter eggs for them to find the next day at home in Woodland. We woke up early the next morning and had a wonderful breakfast down in the lobby and then went to the Oakland temple to do initiatories.Amy and the kids walked around outside and visited the visitors centerwhile we were inside. It is such a beautiful temple and is such a greatreminder for us of Annette and Scott's engagement there about 13 or 14years ago. Inside the visitors center is a big huge gigantic window thatoverlooks the bay area. It is such a beautiful sight. Afterwards we droveover to San Francisco with the help of "Virginia" our GPS sweetheart and ate at Boudin's. It was heavenly. Fresh sourdough bread bowls filled withfresh clam chowder. We also bought some bread to take home for Joe to try. We then went into a little town called Sasalito and then back to Woodlandto be with Joe.
Brynn and Abby with new fingernails and making creative sticky styrofoam balls with grandpa.

Isaac was a trooper on the trip. He loves to go and is such a big part of the family. Don't you love those rolls.

The next day was our Easter Egg Hunt. The kids had a great time searching for their eggs and finding the one special egg with money in it that had their name written on it.
Aaron looked at his dollar and wondered what in the world is this piece of green and white paper?

Abby had to show us her Care Bear costume )that was 3 sizes too small) Cute as a button anyway!

After straightening up the house we then hopped in the car and headed for the Jelly Bean Factory. Surprisingly enough it was a busy day at the factory. It was quite interesting as we sampled many different flavors of jelly beans and then took the tour to see first hand how they were processed and packaged. Of course we couldn't leave until we purchased several packages of flip flops. These were damaged or imperfect jelly beans that were sold at a discounted price. It was really fun!

Friday we picked up around the house, then took the girls to dancing and off we went for Monterey. It took us quite some time to get there, but when we arrived at the Holiday Inn express we quickly put on our swimming suits and headed for the jacuzzi. It was so nice. It was an indoor/outdoor room that had pigeons sitting high up on the ledge. We went to bed early so that the next morning we could get up early on Saturday and go to the aquarium and visit the shops on Cannery Row and Pebble Beach. Billy wanted to hit a bucket of balls if possible. It was so beautiful and very breathtaking. The weather was really nice and Brynn and Abby had a ball putting on the green. We then took a beautiful 17 mile drive around the golf courses of Pebble Beach. It was incredible. Next we did tide pooling at the beach. Brynn and Abby were with us and Aaron and Isaac were with Amy and Joe. We found crabs and little fish and all kinds of seaweed and sea animals. Amy and Joe soon hooked up with us and they brought a yummy lunch for us to share. There happened to be several squirrels close by our table and soon we began sharing our lunch with them. They were not afraid of people at all. They were really brave, much braver than Abby as she took off for the van and stayed in it alone for the rest of our lunch break. We then took off for another drive to a beach in Monterey near Carmel called Point Lobos. Billy and I hiked to it while the kids were playing on the beach and knew it would be a great hiking experience for the kids. We then went back to the beach and watched the sun set and watched the seals in the water. The sound of the wavescoming in was such a relaxing experience. After it got dark we drove to Carmel to the "Hogs Breath Inn" in a little quaint town called "Carmel bythe Sea." It was a little pricy so we decided to go to a Mexican restaurant called El Torito that was on the bay by the aquarium. It was a really full day and we didn't sit down to eat until about 10:00 pm in the evening. After eating we quickly hopped in the car and headed for our motel. Sunday morning we woke up early and went downstairs for a wonderful breakfast and dressed in our Sunday clothes and good old "Virginia" took us to church right near Pebble Beach. It was a big ward and was packed with people. It seemed that there were several visitors and the mission president and his wife spoke about missionary work. It was great and very motivational. After church we changed our clothes in the car and drove to Point Lobos for our hiking experience. It was wonderful. We hiked for about 1/2 mile to the beach as it overlooked the bay and then we hiked down into a little cove where a mother seal and her baby were basking on a rock in the sun. We then hiked back up the hill and on further down the path and saw about 20 mother seals and their babies laying out in the sun and watched as the mothers taught their little ones how to swim. It was so fun. We continued to hike until we reached the point and watched as the waves crashed into the big rocks. It was a perfectly beautiful clear day, one I have never before experienced in Northern California. We could see out for miles as the sun burned off the mists on the water. We had fun yelling at the seals to see if they would respond to us and sure enough they did. It was quite comical. Amy was the best horn honker of all and we laughed as the seals would turn around and look up at her as she did her seal call. We decided we had better go and get some lunch and head for the airport as our plane left that evening for home. We stopped in Carmel and couldn't find anywhere to eat with the whole family so we asked "Virginia" to help us find a goodplace to eat. She is a sweetheart! We ended up eating at an Italian restaurant called Allegro Pizzeria that was East of Carmel in a little shopping area. We had a tasty pizza and salad. We then quickly hopped in the car and headed on highway 1 to Oakland. It was a good thing that we did as the traffic was bumper to bumper going 10 miles per hour for about 2 hours. We finally made it to the airport with 1/2 hour to spare. What a whirlwind fun trip we had, but it is always hard to say goodbye.

Billy hit some great shots on one of the Pebble Beach courses.

Bill was in heaven as he hit a bucket of balls on Pebble Beach. Someday he will have togo nine holes with the boys. Brynn and Abby had a great time putting around the greens with the other golfers.

Tide pooling after the tide had come in was so fun. Lots of crabs and sea creatures.

Watching the sun set was so beautiful.
Point Lobos was one of our favorite spots. We were on the furthest points on the seashore and it was very windy and quite chilly! Aaron loved hiking out there and loved the exploration.
Aaron was too busy exploring to be in the family picture.
Yummy food and great company!
This was a great Spring Break and look forward to vacationing with family again soon.