Family Weekend

So last weekend was "Family Weekend" in which all of my sisters, their spouses/significant others, neices, nephews, Mr. F. my kids, etc. etc. all gathered for three days of FUN!  And WOW, did we ever have fun! 
 
Friday night was spent eating greasy burgers and fries at Hires … Jill and Kimberly don’t have one in Parker so naturally we had to give them their fill … even if Kimmie is a vegetarian.  Quite exciting when you cram a party of 20 into such close quarters.  We emerged a few hours later with bulging bellies and in the case of the CO gang … fry sauce to carry back to Parker, and incredibly fun memories of the evening.
 
Saturday.  Oh Saturday!  Up early for tons of tubing fun at Soldier Hollow.  For those of you that are unaware, Soldier Hollow was one of the event sites for the 2002 Olympics.  It is absolutely BEAUTIFUL up in Heber Valley, high in the mountains, the sun shining, lots of snow and a clear blue sky… PERFECT!  So here’s how it goes: you sign a waiver that is written to absolutely scare the poop out of you … No, I will not sue if I lose a limb.  No, I will not hold the resort accountible if I break my neck.  No, if any member of my party should die I will not blame Soldier Hollow … it went on and on and on … But hey, we wanted to tube so of course, we signed our lives and the lives of our kids away. 
 
Now back in the days of my youth, (really just a few short years ago), when one went tubing, one would lug that ol’ beast up the mountain, huffing and puffing and cussing when you accidentally let go and had to fetch it as it slid back down the hill without you.  Let me tell you, this is not the case at Soldier Hollow.  Oh, No!  All one has to do is pick out his/her tube, walk a few yards to get hooked up to a tow line then be pulled leisurely up the mountain.  No lugging, no tugging, no slipping and sliding back down the hill, and best of all, no running out of breath trying to hike to the point!  It is blissful!  Once at the top it is no holds barred.  There are hills with lumps and bumps and there are hills with fine smooth surfaces … naturally our gang of 20+ chose the more exciting, steeply-icy, bumpy, jumpy lanes O’ fun.  Some of use ‘hooked up’ to each other and some of use rode solo, and ALL of us had a BLAST!   My favorite?  Hooking up with Annie and Jill, going so fast that we ran through not one, but TWO fences at the bottom of the hill (Soldier Hollow employees were not amused, but we were).  I thought we would end up in the parking lot which made all of us laugh even harder … so hard that we couldn’t get out of the tangle of fencing and poles and tubes and each other … BLISS, PURE BLISS … remember the waivers? 
 
After tubing it was off to a great little restaurant in Heber.  The Spin Cafe has everything from soups and salads, burgers, ribs, chicken and sandwiches.  Carol had booked us a private room ahead of time so we could be as loud and rowdy as we wanted … and after our tubing fun, we were very loud as everyone shared his or her favorite part of the morning.  We talked, and ate, and laughed, and ate, and then it was time for GELATO!  Not only is the food at Spin Cafe fabulous, but they make their own GELATO every day.  I kid you not, there were over a dozen choices that ALL tasted incredible. 
 
And then?  Over to Park City where  Carol had booked each of us a hotel room for the night … but who’s going to sleep yet?  Into town we went for shopping.  Souvenirs in hand we went back to the hotel to swim, play games and of course, more food.  Mr. Farish bought 10 pizzas that were happliy devoured in Carol and Dave’s suite.  In bed by midnight because Sunday we were booked to snowmobile the day away…
 
Alas, we awoke to a blizzard of snow!  It was a gourp divided. Some wanted to brave the elements and others were in fear of freezing to death.  We gathered in the hotel restaurant (Sunday buffet = happy), voted and decided to go bowling instead.  I’m sure the bowling alley was thrilled when we reserved 5 lanes on a Sunday … Now, I’m no pro, but I did fairly well, no bumper pads either.  Two rounds (are they called rounds or just games?) time to eat, again.  Spaghetti Factory, mmmm, mazithra. 
 
Now let me tell you a quick story: Stacy is dating a fine fella that happens to live in Princeton, New Jersey.  He flew out for Family Weekend having never met the family … a braver soul I’ve yet to meet.  It was at dinner that Sunday night that Mr. Farish decided it was time to initiate our newcomer and welcome him to the clan … Imagine Davids surprise when the waiter brought out a candle-topped dish of ice cream, plunked it down in front of him, as we all burst out into refrains of ‘Happy Birthday’, (his birthday is in August we later learned).  Shocked?  Surprised? Confused?  Yes, yes and yes.  A good sport?  YES.  David smiled right through the birthday event just as we knew he would … his response ensured that he will fit in just fine with our rowdy crowd of jokesters.
 
And then it was time … I burst into tears as Jill and Kimmie prepared to go back to Parker.  I miss my big sister and her kids terribly all year through so having them for three short days makes it killer hard to say goodbye.  I was also overcome because Robert was in Virginia and Lexi is still AWOL from the family.  I missed them and hope they will join us next year.
 
Hugs and kisses, tears and laughter, memories for a lifetime.  That’s what Family Weekend is all about. 
 
Now, if only Dustin would get all those pictures to me …  Thank you Carol and Dave for a spectacular Family Weekend!
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