After the reunion we headed to Layton to stay at Ted and Bette's place. We anticipated our kids would probably be a little crazy. I really should have anticipated that they would be insane, not listen to a word anyone said and go to bed entirely too late. On the bright side, by this point they were used to awkward sleeping arrangements and when they finally did wind down, had no problem sharing a bed on the floor. By the way, it was the comfiest floor-bed ever, thanks to my SuperMom skills.
For whatever reason, Kalea had absolutely no intention of taking advantage of the pool, and Brynlee appeared interested for about 2 minutes, until she actually got in the water and started freaking out. Steve, on the other hand, was more than enthused to spend some time swimming, diving, splashing and floating. I joined him for a bit and we had our 15mins of peace before dinner.
I got video of our 4th of July firecracker/sparkler extravaganza, but never thought to take a picture. It was really fun and I might post a video someday, but don't get your hopes up for that.
On Tuesday we decided we should take the kids to Salt Lake City and do Temple Square. Of course, in the beginning Kalea was excited and very interested to "Go see Jesus" aka The Christus statue in the visitor's center. Once we got there she would barely hold still, but she was very interested in the statue, specifically the feet. She expressed a lot of concern for Jesus' "owies" and tried to kiss them, then she noticed the toes and holy smokes did she get excited about those. I guess Thorvaldsen got those right because she was enamored with them, which lead to some slightly irreverent behavior and a prompt/noisy exit. I'm sure everyone was glad when we got her distracted enough with other things to quiet her down. Once we got outside again, it was back to crazy kid mode and after a few attempts at family pictures Steve and I were DONE. Which really is an understatement, because at this point we were quite willing to just leave them in their strollers and go for lunch, in hopes that some more capable people would take them in or send them to military school. It was basically at that point that we decided to start the long drive home. At first I felt bad that we were leaving having not really said goodbye to anyone, but at the same time, the HUGE amount of relief that my sanity would soon be restored was much more appealing to me than a few more days of insane toddler behavior. I think some people may not fully appreciate this because they were blessed with perfectly angelic children who never ever misbehave and listen to everything adults say, but for those of you with children like mine, thanks for understanding.
Thus began our long drive home, which really wouldn't have been all that long if it weren't for the awesome detour I took us on to find COSTCO. The detour was worth it in the end, especially when we got home and saw that the crappy bright orange toddler PFDs were going for $40 each and we spent $40 for 2 great quality toddler ones in the States, I felt vindicated. Steve was a trouper and drove all over Montana to get those things, and without too much complaint that his wife was obviously not in top navigating form. Hooray! We also saw a sign welcoming the Beiber Family and later found out that the child of singing notoriety was indeed breathing the same mountain air as we were when we passed through Whitefish, MT. At this point I think it's good to note that our kids were FANTASTIC in the car. Like, really really great travellers. Didn't whine or cry. Only watched 1 movie on the laptop the entire trip- shocking I know. Slept and ate and entertained themselves. It was great and made us look forward to our next road trips- probably much shorter ones.