Why Family Reunions are Important

It usually starts out with this...
the typical American family
...with TEN kids;
 four boys, six girls, one mom and one dad 
living on hundred acre ranch in a small town on the eastern reach of Utah.
That's as typical as it gets. right?  
(ahhh, that's a cute boy there in the front)

Actually it started out here...
Just two individuals with their own set of hopes and dreams of children,
grandchildren and possibly even great grandchildren someday.

And here is what it has become;

ten children
add ten in-laws
add forty nine grandchildren
(thirty one boys.. eighteen girls)
add seven married grandchildren's spouses
(soon to be one more)
add seven great granchildren...soon to be eight
(three boys.. four girls)

still one Mother
and one dearly missed Father...

...and one reunion each year

Family Reunions sometimes get a bad rap.
 I mean who has time for them with all the ball games, youth camps
 and working for the man.
However I contend that family reunions are GREAT for the following reasons...

 #1* Because all kids love sleeping in a tent.
 It isn't until you are an adult that you find tent sleeping so overrated.

#2* Because wading in the river is a welcome reward for setting up said tent.

#3* Because with nothing to distract the teenagers (facebook, ipods etc.)
they are willing to spend time with younger siblings.


#4* Because a person can say "I'm gonna go climb that mountain"...

and then actually have
 time to go and do it!

#5* Because the dry air and the high altitude...wears out the kids.
But bring the kids cough syrup just in case...

#6* Because Grandma always has time for the little ones.
                                 Time that their own mothers never seem to have . 
#7* Because with such freedom you can pretend to be "Lauren" Ingalls Wilder

#8* because the competition is fierce in the Grandkid Relay Races
and a boy has to defend his title.
#9* Because after weeks, sometimes months of not seeing eachother...
cousins, aunts and uncles pick right back up where they left off.  

#10* Because (*activities provided) means you can build your own rocket
then launch it from a pop bottle and pvc pipe and beat your Dad at his own game. 

#11 * Because watching your kids play never gets old.

#12* Because the older, wiser, funnier cousins get to feel like big stuff
 when hangin with the younger crowd.   
#13* Because around dusk someone decides to start a fire
and break out the s'mores and soon after the roasted Starbursts.
(have you tried them?..I mean seriously, they are fantastic)

#14* Because evening conversations overheard
around the campfire and circle of teenagers are priceless.
"...so then I told my date she had husky legs..."

#15* Because the best part of the morning when camping is
 just after you unthaw from the unbearable night
and before the morning sunrise catches your tent on fire.  

#16* Because someday many many years from now these four little girls
 will tell their own kids about they good times
they had together on Uncle Stephen's boat. 

#17*young grasshoppa, Karate here...Karate here...never Karate here...

#18* Because as parents we discover that our kids are often braver
 than we think they are. 

#19* Because the father/daughter and father/son-son and auntie/niece
and cousin/cousin and mother/son
bonding opportunites are endless. 

#20* because at some point you look around
and say to yourself..."I kinda actually like these people..."

#21* Because you never eat better than you do at a Family Reunion.
(River is just discovering food other than Ramen Noodles..my gig is up) 


#22* Because you can Forget about Seven Peaks..
a sandy beach, a hot day and cool water
 are all that most kids need.  
#23* and because y'know...a chubby baby
in oversized swim shorts



Roberts said…
I love the pictures and the commentary. I was so busy that I didn't take a single picture so I'm thankful you did. I will have to borrow some for my yearly cabin book. Thanks for being a good sport and camping with a young baby.
Elise said…
So fun! Wish we could've been there!
Ali said…
Hil your writing is so great (and you're amazing at capturing the whole event in photos. I always forget!
Leslie said…
i too loved the pics and the commentary. also loved canyons spot, those pics were all so precious. 2 in diapers is AWESOME!!
abbie higginson said…
Hey Hilary, I rented the slip n slide from the Peteetneet Academy. You can go there or call. It costs $100 for 2 hours. Then at the end if you have cleaned up your mess that you brought with you - -ie: watermelon rinds, otter pop wrappers, etc. then they give you back $25. So really it costs $75 to rent. You will most likely not be able to rent it out for the remainder of the year however unless it's like on some Wednesday afternoon in September or something! They book up pretty quick so rent it in early summer. June is a good time. They have been doing it for 5 years and it is a blast. We have rented it several times and it has always been a hit! It is just several giant pieces of plastic with the hoses hooked up to it, but boy it is fun!
Merrie said…
Oh and Hil.. I think... I kind actually like you too:)!
Oh, I love this. Such a great reunion!

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