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07 September 2015

Young Family Reunion 2015 (Part I)

These family reunion posts are pretty important to me. I've set myself up as sort of the (self-appointed) memory keeper in the family, as I'm the one with all the photos and the video. All these little moments of cousins giggling together or siblings making jokes are floating around in my brain, and if I don't put them some place, I know they'll start to fade. So, if you'll indulge me, here are all my little memories that I want to keep from our Young reunion.

On our first night in Utah, I had this dream I was at the park with some of my students (from London). Two of them ran up and said to Jon and me, "We're rather partial to Panda. Is he coming to play today?" We asked who Panda was and they told us it was Jon's brother Andrew, who we had apparently brought to play with them on some other day. Dream Jon and Jess thought this was very funny. 

I was so tickled by the idea of calling Andrew "Panda" that I told him about it first thing the next morning. Pretty soon all the nieces and nephews were calling Andrew, Panda and it was glorious. 

The doodle below is one I did for Andrew. Andrew (obviously being Panda) is taking down a double double from In-and-out and Jon is a fat unicorn (which Jon has a strange affinity for), passed out from eating too much chocolate ice cream. 

Just as the grandparents were about the call the official opening of the reunion, we had a bit of a plumbing disaster in the laundry room. Whilst some of the more responsible grown ups took care of the problem, the rest of us put our nephews in boxing gear and watched them go at each other. 

It was probably the most entertaining thing I've seen in awhile, especially when we put Clay against Lincoln. Things suddenly went from being fun and silly, to REAL serious, REAL fast. 

These girls adore their Aunt Lisa. We're so lucky she's in our family now!

The Youngs have a rather large repertoire of reunion songs that I have still yet to learn. To the outsider, some these songs can be rather *ahem* surprising, such as one that describes jumping "in-between the sheets with nothing on at all" and another where someone steals a swimmers underwear. 

But undeterred by the in-laws (that come in with eyebrows raised high in surprise), everyone sings at full volume, with actions and dance move at the ready. 

Then there's Tom, what a stud! He is so great to encourage Ryan's love of the trumpet, even letting him slobber all over his instrument. He is the best in the house with the nieces and nephews. Seriously, ladies... this boy!  Snatch him up before someone else does!! 

Another inherited tradition, from the Benson side, is something the kids call a "magic walk." Jon's Grandpa Benson would take them on this lovely walk and talk to them and then there would usually be a treat at the end. 

We all joined the magic walk this year with Grandpa Young, up Little Cottonwood Canyon.After the walk and lunch, an epic water fight broke out. It seemed like Jon was the villain in the whole thing (a role he was more than happy to fill) and everyone was out to get him as wet as possible. It's unclear who won. All I know is that that hot tub is going to need some serious recalibration.

By far the biggest hit of the reunion is the bouncy house. This year is was SO COOL! It even had a slide! I think what made it most magical is that their water fight could bleed over into the bouncy house because the slide bit was rigged up to make it a water wonderland. It was enjoyed by both the kids and the uncles. 

Since the official beginning of the reunion was on the 24th of July (which is Pioneer day-- a state holiday in Utah), there were fireworks! Lucky everyone in town was also doing fireworks so we got quite a show.

What a lucky girl am I to have married in to such a beautiful, quirky, fun family! Check back in tomorrow to see part two of our Young family reunion. 

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