We had a few stars that aligned over Fall Break.

There are some people in life that are kind of like family, even though they’re not actually blood related.
We had a few of them growing up.  My parents would call them “uncle” and “aunt” which was sometimes confusing to a kid I’ll admit, but man, we loved those extra families who helped shape us as they continued to shape my parents.
Dave and I feel so grateful to have some of those extended family families, and especially grateful that our friends have kids who pretty much feel like extra cousins.  And they are good kids.  Doing good things.  Making good choices.
Our kids sure as heck better make good choices because they sure are surrounded with some great examples.  No pressure, kids 😉
Anyway, aside from getting to see our boy over the break, we got to get together with a group of those good friends.  Friends from back in college days and some from even before that (I think Dave and Mike were in every class together in elementary school).  Over the years we’ve gone from juggling newborns and rambunctious toddlers when we’ve gathered to find ourselves now in the throes of teenagers and college kids…and even a fiance thrown in the mix.
One of those families of friends couldn’t join us at Lake Powell, but has some serious connections there so they got us set up with some sweet houseboats.
Six families gathered together in the best place on earth.
Yes, the stars were aligned alright I tell you!
And when the stars are aligned like that I’m pretty sure that means you must get matching t-shirts for everyone.

Yes, we’re a little cheesy like that:)

We even got Max, who drove down with a few of the other college kids.

The kids (at least most of them…not sure where Lucy was)…

 This is what I got when I asked them to jump:

But that makes perfect sense because Sydnee is the one getting married 🙂

These girls opted for their own heel-click pic:

And this is what our family looks like when we just rolled out of bed on a lake.

…a little on the sleepy side, but so happy to be together.

I’m going to go ahead and let the pictures tell {most of} the rest of the story.

 This is his happy place for sure:

(Thanks for those jumping pictures Nichole!…and I think this next one is from you too.  Also some of these are from Melissa.  And some time I will post from Del and his drone when I get them.)

The last day was a tad bit more cool and cloudy.

But we didn’t let that stop us.

Little Claire grew a new love of surfing and we all thought it was pretty funny that she could stand up before the boat even pulled her:

I just think that water is so beautiful.  Let’s get a close up of the beauty shapes it makes:

Beautiful, right?

A few last games as we headed back to the marina.

Goodbye gorgeous Lake Powell…until next time.


  1. FYI for adults & kids: Boat overload and not riding inside the boat (on back deck) while watercraft is in motion is a class 2 misdemeanor and a pretty nice fine as well if you get caught.

    1. The law is meant to protect the public and the mention of it was given in charity. Life jackets also make a safer experience while on a boat. No one wants to see a tragedy. I don't believe they own a boat so why would they have the opportunity to know the law mentioned by the prior poster?

    2. Just so everyone can rest easy, that boat in the picture is mine. I was operating it that day. I DO own boats, I've owned boats for 34 years. I actually have spent a good part of my career in the boating industry. As for breaking the law, what most commenters here don't realize, is that we were not underway. We had just been cliff jumping with all the kids in a canyon. We had multiple boats that transported all the kids to the canyon in order to jump. After the kids had all jumped, they all swam over to my boat to climb on for a picture. Which is what you are seeing here. There is no way in the world I would drive my boat around with kids hanging off the back like that. So keep in mind, this picture was ONE moment in time and you have no idea what was or wasn't going on at the time.

    3. Thanks for the explanation. The pictures you are referring to are interspersed with pictures of the kids skiing off the boat – in which you are obviously underway…..so yes, looking at the post as it was presented, we as readers have no idea what the true situation is.

      But my post to Sarah below still stands..She said "who cares" not knowing that you were not underway. Still, for her, no regard for breaking the law or for safety.

    4. Del Tanner there are people sitting on you back deck while you are pulling a wakeboarder or skier. That is a watercraft in motion all bodies must be "inside a boat". There are two children on the back as well as Dave. Not trying to be a pest, but I work for Arizona Game & Fish. Trust me when I say from my experience you would have been cited. Good Day.

    5. JEaston I agree with you on the picture I think you are referring to. If we're talking about the same picture, that isn't actually my boat. As for bodies being 'inside the boat', you are correct, and I agree with you. The picture I was defending is not that picture. And for what it's worth, I've had rangers who are okay with it and others who are not. Even though technically you are correct. My main beef was with people who were trying to say I overloaded my boat and was being unsafe. At the end of the day, we probably all speed in our cars occasionally, and are technically breaking the law. That doesn't mean we are careless or irresponsible. I'm a very safe, responsible boat operator and have never been cited once in my whole life for a single infraction in my 34 years of boating. Peace out.

    6. I was just leaving the comment as an fyi…….. Boat owners are going to do what they do, regardless of my comments. I hope that you, your family and friends continue to enjoy our Arizona Lakes. As I'm sure you are aware being a boater that there are a lot of watercraft owners who simply don't care. Maybe I will see you and your red Malibu out on Bartlett Lake one of these days. Take care.

  2. Beautiful pictures. Looks like a lot of fun. I also grew up with close friends that we called aunt & uncle. We still visit & spend time with them. Dear friends are a great blessing. Glad you could spend some time together.

  3. Sarah – are you freaking kidding me? You wonder "who cares"? Never mind about the kid's safety. If Shawni and Dave aren't worried about it neither should we. But how about breaking the LAW? Great example to set for the kids. What other laws should LDS or others not worry about breaking?

    According to your blog you also have umpteen kids. What example does it set for them for Mom to say "who cares" if a law is broken. Especially a law that is there to ensure their safety (even if the parents don't care about it).

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