Road Trip to Washington! Schuh Farms Pumpkin Patch

My sister drove up from her house the next day to go to a pumpkin farm with me and all of our kids. (She has two kids, Ellie and Ian, who are Sierra and Payson’s ages)

My kids were crazy excited to go to the pumpkin farm! PhotobucketPhotobucket

Ok so my sister said to look very serious, so I did. Then I saw when I uploaded that she had this great smile! haha, I look dumb. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

I had them do a serious face. Photobucket

I got him this pumpkin. We still have it, he loves it. (The other kids got pumpkins too) PhotobucketPhotobucket

Payson was throwing a bit of a fit over not being allowed free access to touch everything in the shop there. PhotobucketPhotobucket

And then Ember was crying over not being allowed to do something (I can’t remember what) and Payson attempted to comfort her. Though it appeared that he was strangling her. He wasn’t 😉 Photobucket

Brooklyn rushed over to comfort Ember. Thinking Payson had been strangling her. PhotobucketPhotobucket

My kids both feared and loved this guy. PhotobucketPhotobucket

They had a bunch of animals. My sister and I didn’t know if the kids were supposed to feed the chickens. But we figured… um, it was ok? I don’t know. (There was a lot of food there for the animals… food you could buy, food in a basket… I still don’t know what we were and weren’t allowed to do.) PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketMy mom’s husband and his daughter got there so we headed over to the pumpkin field. PhotobucketPhotobucket

There was this play area with a truck made into a slide and a play house and stuff. My kids loved that! PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketThere was a Wizard of Oz display. Sierra was the only of my children who wanted to have her picture taken over there. Photobucket

My goodness do I love my Sierra! Photobucket

Brooklyn kept getting so pissed at the mere mention of photos so I didn’t bother to even ask her to be in them. haha Photobucket

Sierra asked me to take a picture of her going down the slide on her feet. Photobucket

Kelly and I thought we should attempt a big cousins group shot. It went as well as I expect a photoshoot with 6 kids in a play area to go 😉 PhotobucketPhotobucket

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Milo, my mom’s husband, and my sister tried to get the kids to smile. Photobucket

And succeeded in getting these AWESOME expressions. I love these. haha PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Payson and my nephew, Ian, are close in age and both love superheroes. Especially Spiderman. We put them on this cool tree and had them pose. Photobucket

We told them to pose like Spiderman. Poor Ian felt nervous about being balanced on a tree branch like that. PhotobucketPhotobucket

And then we went home! Photobucket

Road Trip to Washington! Visiting Aunt Kelly

Despite the title, I don’t actually have pictures of my older sister, Kelly, in this post! I forgot to snap some once she met up with us.

First thing we did that day was bathe my children. They were dirty! PhotobucketPhotobucket

On this trip I bathed all three younger kids together and then Brooklyn would go after. It just saved me time and energy to do it that way! Photobucket

We met my sister at this frozen yogurt place. My mom paid for us all. It was SO freaking good! Photobucket

We went to my sister’s house and hung out and had pizza (I LOVE seeing my sister) and then later on, at home the next day, my mom spent some time cuddling with Payson on the couch. My mom was feeling really yucky that day. Turns out she had this really bad cold/flu virus! Photobucket

Road Trip to Washington! Hanging Out with Family

So we didn’t do a whole lot in Washington. Mostly we hung out at my mom’s house. The kids got lots of great time with her, their grandpa and their aunts and uncles. I didn’t take a lot of pictures while there because I just generally don’t take pictures of others besides my kids. I feel awkward.

My mom made the kids some great meals while we were there. It was awesome not cooking for five days!! Photobucket

A picture of Brooklyn, just because she was so cute. Photobucket

My mom bought Ember this outfit. Photobucket

We went to Fred Meyer because I needed some things. Toothbrushes, diapers, and deodorant mostly. That’s my younger brother, Kyle, with the kids. They adored him! Photobucket

My mom loves coloring with the grandkids. My kids colored a whole lot. And when the kids weren’t, the adults were! Photobucket

This was probably only half of the coloring pages my mom printed for the kids! Photobucket

Ember and my younger sister, Jeena. Photobucket

I LOVE this picture of my kids with their grandparents sleeping! Photobucket

Road Trip to Washington! Day 4 of Driving

So I showered in the morning and boy did that feel good! Photobucket

The kids outside our hotel in Kennewick, Washington. Photobucket

The first time I’d done my makeup that week! Photobucket

We made it to Seattle right at rush hour. Photobucket

We sat in traffic for a very, very long time. Especially from just north of Seattle to Everett. Wow. Payson and Ember cried almost the entire time. PhotobucketPhotobucket

We got to my mom’s and a lot of family was there. My mom and her husband and my step brother and sister. My grandparents and my aunt and my little sister and her boyfriend. My kids were a bit overwhelmed. Ember sat there looking from face to face for a lot of the evening. haha

My aunt was holding Ember at one point and bundled her up in this blanket. Photobucket

Ember starting to just come out of her shell; getting used to all the new faces. Photobucket

Road Trip to Washington! Oregon Trail Interpretive Center

In all the planning ahead of time this was the place I most wanted to visit. I love hearing about the people that came across the states. I had a really good time there, I really liked it. And my kids really liked it!! A lot! Brooklyn and Sierra asked a hundred questions and read all the little displays and everything. It was so, so awesome. PhotobucketPhotobucket

It was cute, to me, that my kids wanted to take pictures “with” all the “people” on display. Photobucket

Up until this part of the trip I’d let Ember walk everywhere we’d gone. But this day I was really tired and left her in the stroller while in the museum. I knew she run around like crazy touching everything! Photobucket

Payson was insistent that I get a picture of him doing a Spiderman pose with the girls. Photobucket

I had intended on being in many more of the pictures with my kids but just didn’t manage. Oh well. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

This was the view out of the back window. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

The attention to detail was awesome. I was impressed. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

We left to go look at the wagons outside. My kids were running around crazy burning off energy. They ran up and down these stairs just for the sake of running up and down stairs. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Ember kept climbing up on there and then reaching for me to get her down. She did that a dozen times. Photobucket

The kids weren’t happy with me asking them for a group shot but they did oblige. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Dirty bum! PhotobucketPhotobucket

And that was that! 🙂 Photobucket(I can’t remember exactly why Brooklyn was mad but I think it was because I didn’t let her run off ahead where I couldn’t see her!)

Road Trip to Washington! Day 3 of Driving.

So in Boise the hotel we were at is called the Best Western Lodge. It was awesome! My favorite hotel of the trip. Photobucket

I had originally planned on getting up early and getting to the tire place the second they opened but it didn’t work out that way. Photobucket

We had an awesome, leisurely breakfast together. PhotobucketPhotobucket

We went to Les Schwab to get new tires. It took an hour and a half and while there my kids had a lot of fun playing with toys. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Brooklyn read a book. Photobucket

Ember ran wild. Playing hide and seek with whomever was willing. PhotobucketPhotobucket

My germophobe self just had to let go after the 5th time Ember laid down on the ground. The motto for the trip became, wash hands right before eating and just ignore the dirt the rest of the time! haha Photobucket

We went back to the hotel to check out. All the kids had to help me carry stuff back to the car to reload. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

I try to let Ember walk as much as possible. But she was running wild too much so I asked her to help me push the stroller to the car. That kept her right by me. I’m so smart. Photobucket

We got everything loaded and the DVD player set up and oh boy was I happy about it all. The wretchedness of the first two days were replaced by happily zoned out kiddos. PhotobucketPhotobucket

The first time I’d looked back in my rear view mirrors and been met with four quiet, happy children! PhotobucketPhotobucket

We made much better progress with the DVD players. Suddenly Payson’s previous need to pee or poop SO BAAAAAAAAAAAD was only every three or four hours rather than every half hour! 😛

During a breastfeeding stop) PhotobucketPhotobucket

She was drinking my powerade. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

We drove with only stops for food and breastfeeding once or twice until we got to the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center . (Photos in another post) Photobucket

After an awesome time there we just drove on into the night until we got to the next hotel. PhotobucketPhotobucket

Road Trip to Washington! Day 2 on the Road.

AKA: The day everything fell apart. Except Ariana’s mood 😉

We had stayed at Comfort Inn in Bountiful, Utah. We’d made it there by 1am and were up again driving bright and early. I was tired, I was hopeful the kids would sleep some in the car and we’d make some good progress. Photobucket

So in southern Idaho there are many, many miles of driving with absolutely NO services offered. During that long drive (in which my gas light was on the entirety of!) Payson SCREAMED about having to pee. I finally caved and pulled over on the side of the road and he peed all over himself. And guess what! ONE mile later there was a gas station. DOH! Photobucket

We made it to Idaho! Photobucket

A few snaps after a quick breastfeeding stop. PhotobucketPhotobucket

The kids were getting super sick of driving so we stopped off somewhere in Southern Idaho to burn off some energy. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Not too long after that stop to burn energy, this happened: Photobucket

My tire exploded. AAA was called and we waited, and waited, and waited. Photobucket

We were luckily completely alone on the road just when it happened and able to pull off to the side easily. It was disappointing because I knew it would cause us a huge time loss on the trip 🙁 PhotobucketPhotobucket

So, then the worst part was when the guy came to help he couldn’t get our tire (which is mounted underneath our car) off without a certain metal pole. I couldn’t find the metal pole anywhere in the back of my car, in all the secret cubbies. He asked me to keep looking all over the car. I ended up taking EVERYTHING out (the other side of my car had stuff piled up just like the picture below) and taking the carseasts and seats out and looking EVERYWHERE.

That metal pole is not in our car; when we bought it it must not have came with it. So, the guy eventually (after a long, long time) got the tire off and I then had to put everything back in the car!

He stayed to watch me to make sure when I drove off everything was fine, so there I was loading back up my giant car with all those things and Ember was screaming over not being held. So I actually put Ember in the ergo and wore her while putting everything back together. I was pouring sweat and exhausted in the end! haha. Fun, fun times! Photobucket

All the tire places were closed on Sundays so we were stuck in Boise, Idaho for the night. We got a hotel. Photobucket

When shoving everything back in my car I’d hurried and not organized it as well as I like, so I brought everything in the hotel to reorganize. Not to mention the entire back of my car was full with a giant, exploded tire! ha Photobucket

The road trip up to that point had been complete chaos and… torture… despite me bringing a couple hundred dollars worth of new toys, books, and activities, and a full box AND cooler of food… so that night I went to WalMart and bought a portable DVD player with two screens! I am the type that was anti DVD players in the car but now I’m a FULL convert!! I love that thing with the passion of my whole heart! haha PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

We had Panda Express for dinner. They were closing when we got there so we even got extra free food! SO GOOD! PhotobucketPhotobucket

I let the kids watch one of the $5 movies we bought at WalMart. They were so happy. Little TV/Movie lovers. (Who isn’t?) Photobucket

Ember LOVED hotels. She spent her time talking on the phone, playing with all the free pens, wearing everyone’s shoes, opening and closing the dresser drawers (and putting lots of things inside), and messing with all of our bags! PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketAnd that was the end of the second day of driving!

Road Trip to Washington! Coral Pink Sand Dunes

Just a warning, there are a lot of photos in this post. Probably 50. It was just such an amazing place and we were there for so long, I couldn’t keep my finger off the shutter!

Just like anywhere we go, the big kids ran off the second they got out of the car while I trailed behind a ways waiting for Ember who insisted on walking the entire time. PhotobucketPhotobucket

I had it in my head to have a short talk with them before hand about throwing sand (not to do it, ha) but totally forgot and it was one of the very first things they did. I could see an all out sand fight quivering under the surface of their sibling relationship so had an immediate “no throwing sand” talk with them! Photobucket

I was 100% ok with them picking it up and letting it blow away in the breeze. They actually did really good, they didn’t even attempt to throw sand at each other again. Photobucket

The weather was so perfect that day. PhotobucketPhotobucket

My kids, raised in hot climates, are so desperate for snow activities. They’ve seen kids/animals making snow angels on TV shows and longed to do the same. The sand seemed like the next best thing and within five minutes they’d all attempted a sand angel. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

W eeee! Rolling down the hill. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Do you see the dots in the distance? Those dots are my children. They asked if they could go ahead and I said yes. That might’ve been a mistake. Photobucket

It was just after this photo that I hollered to them to get back near me. Not because I minded that they were out far away from me but because there were a lot of 4 wheelers on the big hill and it freaked me out. Too dangerous for people to be running over there. (This was taken zoomed in!) PhotobucketPhotobucket

Ember had stayed back with me. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

I really love this picture of Sierra. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

And I really love this one of Brooklyn. All that wide open space to run was so good for that girl. PhotobucketPhotobucket

Ember got silly with the sand for attention. Photobucket

First bent over and put her head in it. Photobucket

Then saw Payson pretend to eat it, and thought he really did eat it. Photobucket

So did the same. Photobucket

And didn’t enjoy that much. haha Photobucket

We decided to walk to another hill a ways away. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

It was really hard to walk in all the sand. I imagine if I lived near the dunes and went on a walk through there every day I’d lose a lot of weight and have some pretty major calves. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Before we got to the dunes I figured my kids would get covered head to toe in sand and was ok with that. And good thing I was because they did indeed get covered head to toe. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

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I’m a color photography girl for the most part but these sand dunes pictures were so awesome in black and white. I edited most of them black and white along with color because they look SO COOL. I’ll probably print some black and white ones for our house. (After we move anyway) PhotobucketPhotobucket

I asked them for one quick group picture before we left and this is the best I got. The dunes were too fun to sit still long for a picture. Photobucket

The three older kids ran far ahead of me, yet again. Ember was throwing a major fit about being held but the uphill-in-the-sand walk back was taking her forEVER. It would have taken over an hour to walk back if I’d waited for her. At least. So I finally just picked her up and walked the giant hill back with her crying and squirming the whole time. The people at the look out point watched us a lot and that was embarrassing. And I about passed out once we got to the top because that was a LOT of work. Photobucket

We watched the sunset from the look out point. PhotobucketPhotobucket

She was crying because I hadn’t let her run back down that giant hill! haha PhotobucketPhotobucket

And had a picnic there before driving on towards the hotel. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Road Trip to Washington! Grand Canyon Deer Farm

The Grand Canyon Deer Farm is near Williams, Arizona. I had never heard of it until researching fun things to do on the drive to Utah. I came across the website during a google search and knew instantly that it would most likely be my kids’ favorite part of our trip.

I think I was right!

You pay a fee to get in and you pay a fee for food. It was a bit pricey for what is essentially a petting zoo. I can understand they need to make money to feed the animals and upkeep the farm, though.

The deer are pretty intense when you come in with those cups full of food. We barely even made it in the gate! My older girls were holding the cups and in the front and they would not go in. The deer were crowded around the entrance and neither of my girls would even attempt to go inside. They just stood there immobile while the deer ate almost all of the food before Payson and Ember even had a chance to get inside and see what was going on. If I did it all over I’d go in first holding Ember, then let Payson in, then the older girls. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Yep, my daughters were in heaven. Photobucket

Ember was pretty darn excited, too! Photobucket

I like this next picture because the deer was licking Payson. Photobucket

Here it is closer. So cute. Photobucket

All the kids really loved this sweet, white deer. She hung out around them, letting them pet her for quite a while 🙂 PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

I didn’t do very well at catching one of the bazillion hugs my kids gave to the deers. I did get this out of focus snap though. Photobucket

The girl who took our money instructed us to not leave the paved path at all. Ember would not stop running off. Ugh. Photobucket

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Brooklyn’s been asking for a pet for years. I have always known she likes animals but several times last week when we were around animals I realize just how much. I can’t wait until we move and can get her a pet! PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

She never wanted to leave. PhotobucketPhotobucket

Ember loved that they were closer to her size. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

There were a bunch of fun things to pose with out front. We did before heading on. PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Road Trip to Washington! Part 1

Finally getting around to posting all of my Washington trip photos! I thought about just posting one post at a time but I’m just not that kind of person. haha. I like to do it all at once and have it over with!

So, day ONE! Leaving Arizona.

I spent hours and hours and hours planning this trip! HOURS. DAYS. Planning!

So I wanted to stop at a few fun places along the way because I (rightly) assumed my kids would get nutso trapped in a car day in and day out.

Within the first three hours of the trip Payson had screamed nonstop (like a velociraptor) about having to “poop so baaaaaad!!!” and we stopped at least three times before noon! It was stressful. I knew Ember might be fussy but I didn’t imagine that Payson would be such a beast.

We saw a lot of hot air balloons taking off as we left Phoenix. Photobucket

We stopped at this lookout point. Photobucket Photobucket

After felt like what was an eternity spent listening to screaming we got to the Grand Canyon Deer Farm. We spent quite a lot of time there. It was a BIG hit with all four of my kids! We spent so much time there that we had to skip the Grand Canyon (some other time, I suppose!) and go straight on to Utah. (Deer Farm photos in another post) Photobucket

I can’t remember where exactly we stopped for lunch. I believe it was near Flagstaff, Arizona. I had brought a lot of healthy food to supplement with the fast food. That was a good idea because once the healthy food ran out and the fast food became the main diet staple all of my kids were complaining about stomach aches! PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

There were breastfeeding stops. Usually when stopping for Payson to poop yet again. Ember went for quite a while in between nursing, though. During the entire road trip she only really nursed in the morning, noon, and then before bed. Photobucket

One of the hundred stops we made for Payson to go potty. Seriously SOOOO many stops for that kid. OMGosh annoying. Photobucket

He finally, finally fell asleep just after passing through Page, Arizona. What a relief!! He’d cried, whined, and screamed the ENTIRE trip up to that point. No joke! Photobucket

We stopped at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes in Southern Utah. That was a lot of fun! (Photos in another post) Photobucket

We got to the hotel at 1am! We all got washed up. There was quite a lot of sand left in the tub after the water drained! That was the end of the miserable first day of driving! haha Photobucket