Family Time

For years, my dad’s side of the family has done a summer reunion every other year. I have loved growing up with close relationships with my cousins, and treasure all those memories.

This year, we decided to begin our own traditions of reunions with my immediate family. So my parents, all my siblings, and spouses and children, met up in Park City two weeks ago for a super fun four day weekend.

And thus I give you…four zillion pictures from our weekend of fun.

 Seeing the two grandbabies play together was probably the funnest thing ever. They LOVED all the attention from Grancie and Grandad, and my mom spent a good fifteen minutes taking turns tossing them on to the big pile of pillows. They, of course, loved her for it. Her arms probably did not.

On our first full day there, the men all went off together in the morning to the Park City mountain resort where they rode the alpine slide and the alpine coaster. All of us girls stayed behind with the babies and took them over to a nearby park and the local library.

The rest of the afternoon was spent at the house, playing together, and then in the evening after the babies went to bed, we had family book club.

The next morning, the babies sat out on the porch in the beautiful weather with Grandad, and then we had a celebratory breakfast for Landen and Adam’s one year wedding anniversary (complete with sparkling cider, balloons, and a candle in their pancakes).

Then it was the girls turn for an afternoon out. We headed over to Main Street in Park City where the Kimball Festival happened to be going on that weekend. We wandered through the various arts and crafts booths, stopped in a bookstore for a while, and did a little food tasting. It was a perfect afternoon out together.

apparently I’m the only real weird sister

When we got home, we played card games until the babies woke up, and then congregated on the back porch for some activities geared toward the babies — sidewalk chalk, sock puppets, and t-ball, followed by popsicles. They obviously had a blast.

That night, we got a babysitter for the babies, and all the adults went out to dinner. We were also partially celebrating my mom’s upcoming 50th birthday (but I’ll share more about that later). 

Our last day was Sunday. In the morning, the babies played with the iPad, while simultaneously looking adorable. After church, we headed to a local park where we had lunch and took our family photo (which we’ll be using for our Christmas card this year — if you’re on the list to receive one, act surprised…).

Then we all had to say goodbye, and go our various ways. Seeing the babies say goodbye was the cutest thing ever.

And that concludes our first ever immediate family reunion. We’re already anxiously anticipating the next one in 2014!



  1. Ash says:

    Hooray for family time! How fun! (When My sisters and I get together, I'm usually the one making the "weird sister" face πŸ™‚ Sweet post!

  2. Janssen says:

    Those hugging pictures just kill me. It's too bad you can't tell from the pictures that he had to turn her around to get her to be the right way – what cute little people.

  3. Jenae says:

    If it's alright with you, I've ALWAYS wanted to be a Gates sister. This is just another example as to why.


    PS When did your brother get so old?

  4. Saskia says:

    This looks like so much fun!

  5. the weird sister picture….Bahahhaaaaa!

  6. Chelsea says:

    Very cute! Both sides of my family try to get together every 2 years (luckily so far it's worked on opposite years). It looks like a lot of fun!

  7. Looks like a lovely time and you have a lovely family! I only wish my family could have gatherings like these! Maybe some day!

  8. newpetite says:

    Aww.. love all the pics! the little babies are so cute.

  9. Packrat says:

    Thank you for posting the pictures. It looks like everyone had and great time, and the little ones are just adorable.

  10. Ruth Dowling says:

    While I love all your posts, this one really struck me right to the core since I have two sisters and a brother…
    What a bunch of great ideas for a family gathering!!! You guys look like you are having. Blast and we will be borrowing some of those ideas in the future!! Congrats again on #2, you are positively glowing!! (jealous πŸ™‚ )

  11. Julia Wilson says:

    Hi merrick, where did you get that striped dress in your family Christmas photo?! It's very cute!

  12. kaila sue says:

    You guys are the best at taking vacations!

  13. Julia Wilson:

    I made the striped dress in the Christmas photo. You can see it here:

  14. Marie-Eve says:

    Looks like a great time ! You have a lovely family !

  15. Diana Smith says:

    Hey girl!! What a cute family you have!! Seriously, your little boy is adorable and you get to have another, I am so excited. It was great meeting you!

  16. Unknown says:

    Hey Merrick, love your blog! Just curious, what is the name of the card game you all were playing?? I am a sucker for cards and am dying to know. Thanks πŸ™‚

  17. kimmie says:

    What a good looking family! You sisters are seriously so so so cute, and I love that you and Janssen are pregnant at the same time. How fun! πŸ™‚

  18. Unknown:

    The card game is called "9 Innings."

  19. Love the pictures and especially the family photo. Great color scheme and variations of blue and white πŸ™‚


  20. lauren says:

    random but… i was thrift store shopping with a friend and she was asking if i've ever looked at your blog for refashioning things…um duh! i love your blog! and then she said, "you know that's the stake president's daughter, right?" small small world πŸ™‚

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