Sunday, July 05, 2009

The Fourth of July

After a couple days of packing and organizing, a car glitch (I was trying to be all responsible and got the oil changed before we left but the service station did something weird and all the oil leaked out all over the garage - got all over everything as we were trying to pack up the car - great stuff - but luckily it was a pretty easy fix) and 10 hours of driving (4th of July traffic made a long drive longer but the kids were SO good - traveling is amazingly nice compared to what it used to be!), we're in Ashton Idaho.

I've never seen it so green here. Every summer I'm amazed yet again by the beauty of this place. Ashton is gorgeous - the green green rolling fields, the blue blue skies, the Tetons in the distance. We love this place.

View of the Tetons from Jared's parents' house

View out over Ashton Reservior from the Cabin

We've all had such a great time catching up with everyone and the kids can't get enough of their cool cousins. Ollie and Si love being with their two other 4-year-old Loosli cousins (Logan and Mason), Eliza can't get enough of her abundant girl cousins who are mostly older than her but are so cute to involve her in everything, Isaac bounces from group to group and is a favorite of all the little boys and Ashton has been "geeking out" with his cousin Max - lots of computer time and video games (whenever their parents aren't nagging them to do something different).

We kicked off the 4th of July with our own "Loosli Family Fun Run" early in the morning. I was so proud of myself that I won the 5K (I guess I should mention that only three people did the 5K and Jared would have won for sure but he was nice and tied with me - several others did the 10K but 5K was just my speed after not having run for about 10 years - seriously). The big kids loved riding in the Ashton parade on the great "huge spud" float many people worked so hard on and Ollie and Si had the time of their lives watching the parade with all the grown-ups and gathering up literally bags of candy (plus chocolate milk and ice cream bars that were passed out from floats). The Ashton 4th of July Parade is awesome. Anyone can be in it, there are lots of horses and fun but simple floats, and they throw TONS of candy. Plus the parade goes by twice - it goes down Main Street, then turns around and comes back - so if you miss anything the first time, no worries, you can see it the second time round.
Here's the big spud made of papier machet in honor of Jared's dad who grew potatoes all his life
The whole Loosli family parade entry - spud trailer and tons of kids in the pickup.
All the kids made signs with their names and stuck them all over the truck
then signs on the truck said "Red White and Blue, This Spud's For You!" on both sides.

Here are all the Loosli parade spectators (with the Loosli grain elevators in the background)

After the parade, we headed over to the park for the Ashton 4th of July Celebration - lunch and gunny sac races plus the fire truck sprayed us all and ate lunch and Jared saw tons of old friends. Then we slightly froze while waterskiing at the cabin and squeezed in a delicious BBQ dinner before it started raining. The rain cleared in time for a great do-it-yourself fireworks display including some very big and exciting (and somewhat illegal) rocket fireworks. And we capped off the day laughing ourselves to tears playing fun games. Oh, we love the 4th of July in Ashton!

We've still got lots of farm activities on the schedule for tomorrow - riding on tractors, checking out the crops, the big boys and Jared helping Brian (Jared's brother who runs the farm) ride the horses to move the cows from one field to another. It's fun to be pretend farmers for a while. But I sure admire Brian for all the hard hard work he does as a real farmer and appreciate him for keeping this place going so we all have such a wonderful place to come visit!

There are some drawbacks to having over 20 kids/teenagers and 12 adults sharing a house. Getting into one of the 3 bathroooms when you need it can involve some tricky maneuvering and meal time is quite a production. Getting the kids to sleep at night with so many fun distractions isn't exactly easy and most of the kids end up overtired and grumpy here and there. But we wouldn't trade this for anything. I'm so grateful I got to marry into this wonderful family.

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