28 October 2015

sisters in switzerland

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for the past five or so years, my mom, three sisters, four sister-in-laws and i have been talking about planning an epic girls trip to switzerland.

last month, our scheming and dreaming came true! {thanks to my mom’s wise inventing of the funds received from the sale of her parents’ idaho farm, the awesome dads and babysitters that took care of the twenty six kids left at home, and planning contributions from each of us – most especially anita and aja.}

the nine of us, plus one really cute baby boy, met up in zurich and then traveled through parts of switzerland, germany and austria together. it was indeed epic – an incredibly joyful and beautiful and wonderful week.

it’s challenging to create a record of a trip like this that was so jam-packed with awesomeness and details. i’ve done my best to gather photos from different sisters’ cameras, now back home scattered across the globe, and will chronicle our adventure in just a few blog posts in an attempt to remember and share all this beauty!

we were all sooooo excited when we met up in the zurich train station:G2312019
^^ so fun to see each other after arriving via plane from arizona, boston, utah, london and new york city and by train from spain. our mom was already in switzerland with anita, who lives just outside zurich. our initial reunion was missing kristi, who flew in a little later from los angeles. we went and picked her up on the way to the darling swiss town of schmedrued, which happens to be where our great grandmother ida weber grew up before immigrating to america. 2015-09-26 Switzerland day #1 117043
^^ i bet it was hard to leave this gorgeous place!! but our ancestors were motivated by strong faith, and it is so inspiring to learn about their stories and feel their genes in our bodies and spirits. especially in their very homeland! saydi, shawni, saren, aja and i got to schmedrued a little earlier than the other car so we took this gorgeous walk in the hills:
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once we were all together, we went on a little tour of the historical museum in schmedrued, which is housed in the old schoolhouse. this building is where our great grandmother (and likely our great great grandmother and grandfather, too) went to school. pretty neat to think about them learning within those same walls. the museum had lots of neat items from the time of ida weber, and the husband-and-wife historians that run the place were so kind to give us a tour!
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^^ the stairs in the schoolhouse are original…so here’s baby dean stepping on the same wood that his great great grandmother did. so fun to have this little one with us on the trip – he was a total dream most of the time! ^^
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^^ the old looms in the museum were incredible! i love all the colors! ^^
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we went to the main church in the village, where our ancestors likely worshipped before their conversion to mormonism. the graveyards in switzerland are so incredibly beautiful, with a little garden plot filled with flowers surrounding each grave!
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we slept at a great little airbnb place with air mattresses on the ground to fit us all!
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and the next morning went to church together at tal and anita’s ward. it was great to be with our dad, who had been traveling and speaking in europe with my mom before the girls’ trip. love that guy.
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after church anita made us the most delicious sunday dinner and we ate together in her and tal’s beautiful home. here’s a really great selfie :)
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and after dinner we took the most exquisite sunday walk in the hills behind tal and anita’s house. the local farmers had told tal and anita to pick and eat as much fruit as they’d like from the trees along the road. we thoroughly enjoyed snacking on the yummiest plums and apples as we walked!
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^^ my sisters always tease me about my “squat pose” that somehow comes out in pictures, so sometimes i humor them by squatting on my own :) ^^
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^^ one of the best things about switzerland’s countryside is the ubiquitous sound of cowbells. mom decided to make friends with this guy! ^^
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^^ after our walk back at talnita’s house before we left their town. their flowers – and their neighbor’s flowers ^^ – are stunning, right?!
we drove to anita’s hometown of flims, stopping by her sister’s house on the way. fun to add another sister to the group for a little bit!
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and then we went to anita’s childhood home. i’m not even lying – this is literally the backyard!:
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and here she is in her childhood bedroom, overlooking the view from her desk. it was so neat to get a glimpse into anita’s life in switzerland, her home. IMG_20150927_185828500_HDR
we stayed overnight in flims, and this was the view from our balconies in the morning! (they had a hot air balloon festival going on the week we were there!)
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after a lovely hotel breakfast…
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…we went to the lake where anita used to frequent in the summers growing up. we hiked around through magical forests and to spectacular viewpoints.
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^^ you really can’t tell in this picture, but there are spots of green grass all over on the mountains will little villages perched on them. i love it! ^^
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^^ i adore, appreciate and admire my older sisters so so so much! ^^
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^^ and we definitely hit the jackpot with sisters-in-law. adore, appreciate and admire these ladies so so so much too! ^^
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^^ they call this the grand canyon of switzerland. saydi felt alive at this viewpoint! ^^ we all did!
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after our hike around the lake, we met up with my dad and tal, who had set up a paragliding adventure for those of us brave enough…
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… it’s impossible to articulate how much i loved paragliding over the alps. but i’m going to try in the next post :)

being with sisters in switzerland was pretty much the best thing ever. we are all so grateful that we were able to take this trip (and still marveling that we actually did!)!!

6 comments :

  1. So incredible. The beauty of the land and buildings. And, to walk where your ancestors walked!! Dream come true!

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  2. "the 26 kids we left behind"... Holy moly! Did you want to tell everyone you traveled with to keep you all safe? You had the lives of nearly 30 kids on your shoulders? That's incredible!

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  3. Wow char! This is incredible documentation! So much work. Can I just link to your blog?

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  4. Breathtaking! Whats the name of the town where they live now (the one with the farm backyard) simply spectacular!!

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