I know I’ve been blogging out of order, but I didn’t want to miss the kids’ back to school moment. So let me recap Utah. It was one of the quickest trips I’ve had. It was 12 days, but when you factor in a four day trip to Flaming Gorge and time with six siblings it went by way too fast. My mom loves to have us, but I know having four littles added to her routine is quite exhausting (I know because it’s exhausting for me too). We had one day to recover and see some family and the next day we headed to the Gorge. Harvey was sick for the first bit so Andy stayed back until he had been fever free for 24 hours. He didn’t miss much though. The first night the cousins had a blast and we went for a walk, but they got a little rough and poor little Yuli got hurt (there were four different stories from four different nieces so it’s unclear what actually happened, but I think it had something to do with wrestling and Beverly). Beverly just loved and adored Yuli because Yuli would let her… Harvey struggles to be loved as roughly? as Bev tends to show her affection towards the littles. But apparently for good reason. We spent Saturday morning getting ready to go boating and Andy headed up to the gorge. We were only on the lake for about an hour and a half by the time he made it. We swung by the docks and enjoyed the water. My parents just got some kayaks and a paddle board so we all took turns on those and swam in the very icy but refreshing Gorge water. It was lower than it has been in quite some time because Lake Powell was dangerously low so it was given water from several other damns that flow down that way. That being said, the water did feel that low to me and most of the time the water depth was 50 feet or more. The Dan clan went home Sunday after church and we got to stay two more days. My parents’ cabin is a nice manufactured home. They’ve made it quite comfy for us to stay in. It’s been quite fun this summer for my family to enjoy.

When we got back we had a blast swimming at the Green’s parents’ home, ice skating with cousins, visiting my grandpa who seems to just be plugging along, eating at the nearby Mexican restaurant which was muy delicioso, stopping by BYU creamery, Dinosaur park with cousins, ATV trip for the men and game night with Nick and crew. We had dinner at Dan and Jieun’s and AJ and Adrienne’s and Nick and Sara fed us one night. We left with a BANG. Monday night my dad invited everyone over for fireworks and water games. It was a blast as always with accompanied injuries. Avie got her nose bashed in by Effie (on accident, of course), Max tripped and his knee landed on the metal garden barrier, slicing it open and leaving a scar similar to the one his dad got just days earlier, and Finn had one of the plastic copters slice the top of his finger. So all around a good ol’ Rasband family tradition. It was a lot of fun to reconnect with everyone. Max said on the way home, “I am excited to get home, but I wish our cousins lived closer.” Me too, bud, me too. We were sent home with some treats for the plane from Crista, some homemade biltong and granola from Jieun and Dan, some cookies from Adrienne, and some home canned produce and jams from my mom. She even canned the last day I was there just so I could take home some of her delicious blackberry jam– fresh from her garden. I felt very loved and very spoiled. I really enjoyed the time I had with my family and I do miss them very much. It is hard to live so far away. I know my family is where we’re supposed to be, but it doesn’t mean I don’t sometimes wish I lived closer.

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