July Cabin Trip.

I love having a place that we visit every year, that we've been visiting since my childhood. I love doing some of the same things each time, and adding in new places as well. Here's this year's cabin tripp in (pared down) photos.
We try to keep the meals simple and tasty to allow for maximum relaxation and fun in the mountains. Grilled cheese was the first meal of the trip.
ShowLow has been getting some great new restaurants. After Sheldon & Michele and TJ's friend both raved about it, we all went to The House and the food and atmosphere were the best!

Giant bubbles and water balloons are always a hit.
TJ is laughing because Major was actually squinting both eyes shut when trying to look through the scope of this .22.

When Major refused to wear the ear protection, he was banished to the truck. He then proceeded to lock himself (and the keys) inside the truck. We eventually got him to unlock it.

This hike was supposed to have a creek, but we soon discovered that it probably only runs during the spring when the snow melts.

Instead, we made a drive down to Diamond Creek (and had to beat a thunderstorm to enjoy it for a bit).

At this point, the slight incline was "too much."
Hunting bugs in the meadow.

We love walking over to the lake and making a lap or two.

On our way out of town, we made another stop at The House, but enjoyed their little sister shop--The Red Barn Creamery. The cookies and cream was our favorite from this visit!

Hassell Family Reunion 2017

Big families are fun! My dad is about in the middle of his 11 siblings, and so his youngest four siblings have some kids that are close to the same age as Jake and Major. Since they don't have any first cousins, these family reunions have become ever more important to me. It's also fun to talk with my aunts and glean from their motherhood wisdom. This year the reunion was in Mancos, Colorado at an RV Park right next to the Mesa Verde National Park.

Because of our cruise, TJ wasn't able to take the time off from work to join us. So, Mom rode with me and the boys in the Malibu. It was about a ten hour drive, and I drove the whole way myself, which I was pretty proud of.  The boys really are troopers on road trips, and I firmly believe that is because I really try to have a flexible mindset, lots of snacks, and stop every two hours or so for bathrooms and stretching. It may take a little longer to arrive, but if everyone arrives happy I think it's worth it.

Stopping in Holbrook is something I remember doing on our way to New Mexico to visit Grandma and Grandpa Hasssell. Those dinosaurs are an iconic part of my childhood.

Thank goodness for Uncle Michael and Aunt Betty. They're always prepared for anything.

Camping is always a testament to the ingenuity of children and how they really will just entertain themselves when the distractions are removed. These cousins loved playing in the dirt and in the tents.

We spent the majority of one day in the Mesa Verde National Park. It was really pretty and really interesting to learn about the Native Americans who once dwelt in these cliffs.

 Until next year! I'm glad this time it will be a little bit closer to home.