Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A Family Tradition

I vividly remember one week during the summer of 1978.

I was eight years old (almost nine!!), and my Grandma Olsen was in charge of her extended family reunion that year.  Being the tenth of eleven children, Grandma's extended family was huge, and planning this reunion was an enormous undertaking; my mom, in a moment of brilliance, decided that I needed to stay in Salt Lake City that week and help Grandma prepare.

I wish I had physical images from that week, but it was 1978, and who trusted an eight-year-old girl with a camera?

Instead, I have pictures in my mind--a giant lollipop bought with my own money, writing letters home, sitting in Grandpa's green recliner while watching "The Price Is Right," a tour behind the scenes of Snelgrove's chocolate dipping shop, sleeping on the floor of my grandma's bedroom and looking at myself in the mirror's reflection at the end of the hall in the halflight provided by the TV, spinning on a merry-go-round and looking up at the cloud-strewn sky.  Then--watching my mom and baby sister come down the steps off the airplane and all three of us riding the leaky Greyhound bus back to Twin Falls at the end of that spectacular week.

I don't remember one second of the reunion or what I did to help my grandma.  I do remember being the center of my grandparents' world for that week and being drowned in their love and attention.

When Heidi turned eight years old, I wanted to replicate my week-long grandparent experience for her, and so a tradition was born. Each time one of my children turns eight, they get to spend a week with my parents, and the next summer they spend a week with Brad's mom.  Micah turned eight last summer, but we were on Our Grand Adventure, so his week in Idaho had to be postponed until this summer.

We left him in good hands Friday afternoon.
Since he's the fifth child, he rarely gets one-on-one attention, and I think he's loving being the center of everything.

He's been doing all kinds of fun stuff.
Grandma took him grocery shopping and let him pick out anything he wanted to eat for the week.  Macaroni and cheese and corn dogs--he must feel quite spoiled.

 He visited the shake shop where his cousin Forest works.
 Grandpa is helping him make slingshots--one for Micah and one for Hyrum. Hyrum will be surprised!

 There are plenty of little boy cousins to wrestle and play with.

I know he is shooting the .22, riding horses, watching movies, and playing dozens of games as well. And the week's not over yet!  He won't fly home with Tucker (who is working at BYU this week) until Saturday.

It's exhausting, but someone's got to do it.
I'm so grateful he has this time in Idaho with his grandparents.

Thanks, Mom and Dad.  You're the best.


  1. That's an awesome tradition! Hearing you talk about Grandma and Grandpa Olsen brought back a lot of great memories I had with them. Wish I could have had a whole week with them!

  2. Couldn't get better than that. Can I hang out with your parents too? They sound great.

  3. Sounds like great fun to me! Gma and Gpa Tucker are da' bomb! My kids didn't get this kind of trip...hmmm

  4. We are the ones who are getting the enjoyment out of Micah's visit. Thank you for letting us have special time with one of our nineteen favorite people. He has been exemplary. (I still need to send you pictures of other things. I remembered to take them!)

  5. That is a great tradition! I love it!