I have always been blessed to have an extended family that spends lots of time together. Every year either Christmas or Thanksgiving is celebrated as an extended family. I have many memories of Easter, 4th of July, Labor Day, New Years, and lots of other "days" with my grandparents, uncles, aunts, and cousins. We have many fun family traditions that I am so excited to be passing down to my boys. One of the fun things that we have done for years (I think the first one was in 1985 which made me 4) is to go camping altogether. For years this included my grandparents, most of my aunts and uncles, and most of the 17 grandchildren. Over the years, the numbers have fluctuated some but the biannual camping trip continues. This was my families first time to go. Besides being Elijah and Kyle's first camping trip, it was also Ricky's first time to give camping a try. We only got to camp for 2 of the 5 days as we had a wedding to attend on Saturday but we had a lot of fun those two days! I think that Elijah was born to camp!
We spent Tuesday night with my grandparents in Great Bend, KS. They were unable to attend the camping trip this year so we were glad to get to see them for a day. We took the boys to Great Bend's new water park. Unfortunately, I was so busy playing that I didn't get pictures of the fun evening but here is a picture of the main play area.
Our Loaded Car
Kyle ready to go get Elijah from Grandpa-pa and Grandmother's
Setting up Camp:
Elijah helping my Uncle Tim
Kyle helping everyone. . .or at least trying to
Ricky and my cousin Austin finishing up our tent
My parents trying to remember how the tent goes together
Our Home Away From Home. . .Elijah woke up on Thursday morning a little delirious as he had fallen asleep on my cousin Alex the night before and we carried him into the tent. He was so excited when he woke up and saw the lake and realized where he was. He looked at me and said, "Mommy, I love our new home!"
Ricky and Alex's round of Badminton. . .they had two little helpers
Uncle Russ and Cousin Austin
Aunt Diane, Aunt Debbie and Elijah
Ricky got this beautiful picture Wednesday night