Time With Ashlyn


I’d been planning this trip for a while. I’m not so good at keeping a surprise to  myself but this was my secret joy for two weeks. Whisking Ashlyn out of school- suitcases packed- and heading to St. George to watch Michele run her marathon, hang out with cousins and have some time together. It worked. I sent the kids off to school, did laundry (Friday is a laundry day), packed like crazy when the babies were down for naps, and drove to the school. I checked her out of school and she asked me why. “We’re going on a trip!” She was thinking we were going on a family camping trip? It took her a minute to realize that we weren’t going home. It was just the two of us! Our bags were packed. Homemade cookies for the after-school snack were in the car and we drove off! I think it was constant talking for the first two hours of the drive. I loved hearing how much Alison means to her- how when we had Alison it changed her life forever. I loved hearing about the things she likes and the happy person that she is!

We made it to St. George in time to have dinner at Brick Oven with everyone. Grandma and Grampa spoiled us with giant cookies! My parents let us have the extra bed in their hotel room and it was fun to hear them tease each other and laugh so much! It made my heart happy 🙂

The first item on the agenda was watching Michele’s marathon. We cheered her on at mile 24 and sprinted (which involved driving fast and jogging) to see her cross the finish line. She ran it in 4:51 which shaved off a half hour from that same marathon last year! I can’t imagine keeping up her 11 minute mile pace for 26 miles. That’s so amazing! She did a great job!

Next we visited Gramps Taylor and we followed that up by driving to the lake to go cliff diving. It involved walking through some great sandstone and steep descents.

Look at this crowd!

By the time I rounded the bend, Ashlyn had already climbed to a high point dived in. First kid. No fear. Well- I did talk with her about later and she said that it was scary until you actually jump.

Phase 1: You think about it

Phase 2: The jump

Phase 3: Straighten out

They had this beautiful little island nearby. It makes me think of Peter Pan, Mermaid Island- something magical like that. It was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen…

Justin swam over to join the girls

All of the cousins

I was planning on going home after cliff diving but it was getting late. By the time Ashlyn showered at the hotel it was 7pm. One of my biggest fears is falling asleep while I’m driving so I decided to stay one more night and leave first thing in the morning. Ashlyn was esctatic because this meant that we’d have time to shop for skirts at the outlet malls and she’d be able to go swimming at the hotel one more time. She said, “The only way this day could get any better is if I could have crab.” Unbeknowst to me, my family had planned to go to Red Lobster that night. We were going to be driving home…. but instead we joined in. I told her that I would NOT be getting her crab for dinner and she was okay with that. And then I saw the kids menu- Snow Crab. She got her crab! And she did end up getting to swim in the hotel pool that night.

That day included: Watching a marathon, swimming at the hotel pool, cliff diving, shopping, and swimming at the hotel pool. She said it was the best day of her life!

We got home in time for the afternoon session of conference and Ashlyn crashed. She was so tired! We had such a good trip. Now Ashlyn is trying to plan a trip to California so that she can see her California cousins again 🙂 (And a beach)


One response »

  1. I can’t just not comment on this post—-AMAZING!! The whole thing. Such a sweet surprise! That is so cute that she wanted crab and got it! So cool that she got to go cliff diving with her cousins – that did look like amazing water and scenery! I can see why she loved the trip.

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