June 23 – 29, 2018
I don’t like to have a detailed plan that I have to follow. Such a thing feels like a restriction to me, and any restriction makes me feel stifled and frustrated. It’s like the feeling of standing at a spot in a swimming pool where you can touch, but you have to bounce on your tippy toes a little bit to keep your face above water, and the pool floor is sloped and slippery. For my husband, on the other hand, having a plan for each day (complete with to-do lists, goals, and incentives) gives him a sense of control, calm, and ultimately…freedom. This is one of the great ironies of our relationship; one of the quirky little things about us that can endear us to one another one moment and drive a wedge between us the next.
Which is why it started to drive Brad slightly insane that I created a 13 page document to convince our friends that driving to Utah to spend a week exploring with us was not only doable, but irresistible. It included packing lists, car game ideas, to-go meal menus, photos, and can you believe it….7 days worth of by-the-hour itineraries. I had no idea I would so thoroughly enjoy making plans for other people since I insist on keeping my own life disheveled. And it broke Brad’s organized little heart to see that I actually CAN make fantastic, detailed plans…I just usually chose not to do so for my own family. But I had so much fun creating the document, but the best part is…IT WORKED!!
We spent a whirlwind week together, showing them some of our very favorite places in Southwest Utah and exploring new ones together as well. There was laughing, arguing, parenting, and pushing ourselves to the limit. There were tears of awe at breathtaking natural beauty, and tears of appreciation for having such wonderful friends in our lives. There were dirty kids carrying clean laundry, lots of swimming instead of bathing, and varying colors of sand all over Stumbo’s floors. We saturated our bodies with delicious snacks at every opportunity, saturated our clothes with cool water while we hiked in the relentless heat, and saturated our hearts with that fantastic feeling you can only get when you do life for awhile with bosom buddies. We watched baby hummingbirds feed, held kittens, and had slumber parties. We visited all the bakeries. We walked along the rim of the largest canyon on our continent, looking down into the mesmerizing spaciousness. We walked through part of the longest slot canyon in the world, running our fingers along both red walls at the same time as we made our way through the cool, breezy shadows. We saw bighorn sheep, prairie dogs, bison, and wild turkeys. We stayed up too late every night.
I hope it doesn’t sound like I’m being overdramatic, but it just really was that wonderful. And now…I have to go lay down for a week.
We love you, ScanFam!
Sounds, and looks, like you had the time of your lives! Thanks for the peek into the dynamics of your family life. Happiness truly is the manner of traveling and you’re proof of that.