Sunday, August 27, 2017

Montana Reunion

We had one more Sunday with the Warnocks, and then they left to spend a couple of days at Grandpa Michael's house before the family reunion in Montana.  We left Wednesday, July 19 to drive all day to Seeley Lake, Montana.  The reunion was at Tamaracks Resort, which was lovely.  
 We were immediately reunited with the Warnock Cousins, and a few hours later we were joined by the Jensens.  Faith came to represent the Alvarez family, or, as they prefer to be called, the Alvari.
 There was hiking, swimming, relaxing, and most of all, time to hang out with cousins.
 Cheyenne loves to show off her baby.
 Look! Me and Todd are cute again!  This must be a record for us.
 Todd and I celebrated our eleventh wedding anniversary this year.  After 12 years of swimming together, I finally managed to dunk Todd in Seeley Lake.  It was a big day for me.
 The water was not too cold, but we couldn't go out very far before we were beset with seaweed and deep mud.
 This is just us being awesome.  After the kids were put in bed at night we had people come over to our cabin to play games.  We even got Uncle John's family to come over one night and do board games with us.
 My dad's mom, Grandma Lister, was there.  She is mostly blind, so she didn't participate very much in the outdoor fun, but she loved having the kids come in to see her.  She brought gifts for all of the children.  I don't think any of my kids have ever met this Grandma before.
 New toys led to more cousin fun.
 Here is Cheyenne, showing off her cute baby again.
 New toys had to be brought out and buried in the sand.  Miraculously all of our Great-Grandma toys did make it home with us.
 Stay weird, Todd.
With all of the Montana trees, we were bound to find a couple with the right spacing for some hammock time.
 Jared was persuaded to come to this reunion with the promise of an epic water fight.  When the first couple of days were windy, and Uncle John and Aunt Shaunna seemed reluctant to hold a council of war, child led water fights started breaking out spontaneously.  This water fight turned into a game of drench Aunt Faith.
 It was really fun to connect with most of my Humiston cousins.  They were always up for games.
 There were group campfires three of the four nights.  We let the kids stay up for one of them, on Friday.  We sang camp songs, told stories, swatted mosquitoes, and ate s'mores.
 Being allowed to stay up was a huge treat for these tired kiddos.  Look at the size of B's smile!
 Saturday, our last full day in Montana, we rented a little rowboat with a tiny motor and buzzed around the lake.  Rowing turned out to be kind of impossible with all of the small kids in the boat.  Sammy clung to me like a leech the whole time we were on the water. We hummed along at a snail's pace with the little electric engine, and we didn't lose anyone overboard.  At least not permanently.
Finally, we had the long anticipated water fight.  It had all of the soaking, tackling, shrieking, side-taking, hat stealing, and sneaking that Jared could ask for, and a lot more besides.  It was wildly fun.  Photo credit goes to Naomi, who tried to avoid a soaking, but failed.
 When we thought we were done with the water fight, we drifted away to other activities, only to find that both sides (My dad and family vs. Uncle John and family) had planned ambushes on the open field.  So we got wet again with our clothes on.  Sammy and B were big fans of Aunt Shaunna, and her willingness to refill water balls over and over and over again.
 The fun was over too soon.  We started our goodbyes on Saturday evening.  Sunday morning everyone scattered.  We went to sacrament meeting at the tiny Seeley Lake branch, which met in a room the size of the Relief Society Room in our building at home.  The extra six of us, plus nine of Uncle John's family, and Grandpa Karl and Grandma Bonnie, made for a packed room.  They had to set up a few extra chairs.  Uncle John had thought to call ahead and alert the branch president that we would be bringing a crowd, so we didn't have to feel too bad about springing our numbers on them.

The reunion was over too soon, but we were off on more adventures.

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