Sunday, July 19, 2009

Flagstaff 2009

DISCLAIMER! Another big picture post here ;) Yeah, I just took a lot while on vacation :D

It has been WAY too long since a family vacation. The last time we went on one was before I got pregnant with the girls. We went to ND in June 2007 to see Paul's brother get married and Jared was the ring bearer. It was a fun trip, as always, seeing Paul's family. Hm...might be a while until we can drive back up to ND for a visit ;) Then, we went nowhere in 2008 due to having 4 newborns in the house. So this year we decided the girlies were big enough to venture out of the homestead and go on a trip. We didn't go too far, just about 3 hrs up north. Ahhhh! The pine trees and cooler weather!

The girls did great on the trip, some crying on the drive to and from and it took them some getting used to the "home away from home." I was worried about them not sleeping as I have never had them sleep in pack-n-plays. Thank goodness they got over that transition and slept wonderfully! Thank you to Margo A, Jen H and Carrie K for letting me borrow your pack-n-plays. I only own one, from the baby Jared days, and needed three more. You ladies were lifesavers! Thank you again!!!!

We ventured out a bit on our vacation. We went on a rim trail at Walnut Canyon National Monument one morning and walked along a paved loop around the Walnut Canyon Lakes another morning. It was beautiful! God is so awesome in his creation! Then, in the afternoons, while the girlies napped, Jared had fun playing an Indian Jones Lego XBox game with Dad at the activity center and also got in some swimming with Mom, Dad and Grammy on the other days. Oh, and some miniature golf with Mom and Grammy too. Fun, fun! We also enjoyed lounging outside on the grass under the trees watching the rain clouds roll in and ate breakfast outside on the porch every cool morning. Ahhh!

I foresee family vacations being much more fun when the girlies get older/bigger. What fun!

Here are the pictures from our trip. Enjoy!

Gotta pack A LOT for a family of 7 plus a Grammy! 4 booster seats, because you know we can't bring our quad feeding table for the girlies ;) This doesn't include the cold items, like milk and yogurt, in the cooler....4 pack-n-plays for the girlies. Thank you again ladies!!...diapers and wipes for the girlies. Yeah, we still go through a lot :P...and a very packed van. Whew!Brielle, Jared and Suzan - "mama, we're ready to roll!"Grammy, Anna and Bethany - "all ready mama!"Almost there kids! Anna and Bethany, still awake during nap time. Oh well ;)Jared and Suzan in the vanBrielle in the vanWhew! They finally fell asleep! Yay!Anna and Bethany exploring the home away from home. Oh, and we packed lots of toys for them too :DGrammy, Brielle, Suzan and Jared exploring too. Jared loved the place. He was too excited about it.Ah, they feel right at home and are already stealing toys from each other - Ha!The girls' room. What a packed room with 4 pack-n-plays!Suzan waking upBrielle waking upAnna waking upBethany waking upA morning hiking the Rim Trail at Walnut CanyonGrammy with Suzan and AnnaBrielle at Walnut CanyonPaul, Anna, Suzan, Grammy and Jared at Walnut CanyonJared at Walnut Canyon. They also have a 255+ steps trail down into the canyon. That would be fun if the kids were older.Some fun flower pictures...Indian PaintbrushPink PenstemonPrickly Pear Cactus flowerBack "home." Brielle, Anna, Suzan, Bethany and Grammy playing on the grassBrielle checking out the dandelions in the grassSuzan getting a dandelion from GrammyAnna playing with one of those Velcro ball catcher toysBethany showing everyone her belly button - Ha! :DBrielleSuzanAnnaBethanyJared, Paul and Brielle playing badmintonPaul, Brielle, Bethany and Suzan all playing in the grass, enjoying the cool weatherJared, Paul, Brielle, Grammy, Anna and Suzan (Bethany hidden behind Brielle) out for a walk around the neighborhood after dinnerThe next morning, after breakfast, we went on a stroll around the Walnut Canyon Lakes area. So beautiful!Jared and Paul, checking out the lakeBrielle, Anna, Mama, Bethany and Suzan at the lakes. Yeah, finally me in a picture ;)More flower pictures...Indian Blanket...White Yarrow...and Yellow ConeflowerA mama duck with her 3 (I believe) ducklings. Yeah Mama Duck, I can totally relate to you there ;) Some "toddler" ducks swimming in the backgroundWalnut Canyon LakesBrielle and Anna at Walnut Canyon LakesSuzan and Bethany at Walnut Canyon LakesJared at Walnut Canyon LakesAnd Jared with a pine cone he picked upSo WE SURVIVED our first trip with quadruplets! Woo hoo!! There were some fun times and some so-so times. All in all, though, we had a good time! Jared keeps asking us if we can "go back there." How cute! Yes Jared, we think we can do that again, maybe next year :D
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Kimberly & Alex said...

sounds like alot of work, but FUN!

Anonymous said...

Looks like fun. why is your son still in a car seat and not booster. He looks to old for those straps.

The Carlsons said...

Anon, it's funny that you mention the car seats. We actually believe that the higher weight and height limit 5-point car seats are safer for kids that boosters. We went with the Radian 80s, as it will fit a child up to 80lbs and 53 inches tall. Our son is no where near those limits. There are some Britax models that have similar limits but we can't fit 3 Britaxes across a row.

Click here to watch a video from a mom that lost her son due to him being in a booster seat. They also have a foundation educating people on the safety differences between convertible car seats and boosters.

The Super Bean said...

I think it's good that Jared is still strapped into his carseat. I wish more people would keep their children harnessed longer... In Germany (where I live), most kids are in boosters by 3 years old. Not good!

But I have a question regarding the girls: Wouldn't it be safer for them to be rear-facing? Nobody in my country does rear-facing after 8 months, but I thought it was a big topic in the States?

The Carlsons said...

Super Bean, to answer your questions on rear vs. forward, the minimum requirements here in the states are a child must be 1yr old AND at 20lbs to be switched to forward facing. But now our American Academy of Pediatrics is recommending that kids be rear facing until 2yr. They say they are "more than 5x safer riding rear facing." Wow! Unfortunately, we noticed an issue with the distance between our rows not allowing enough room for the convertibles to be rear facing and not every row has Latch or tether capabilities, hence having everyone forward facing.

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