Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Christmas things, part I


We had lots of Christmases this year.  The first was with my grandparents in Michigan in November.  Then here at our home with my parents and three of my sisters on December 17th.  Then we drove through the night to Utah and celebrated with my sister Ruth a few days later, and with Neil’s parentson Christmas itself, and then another present-opening with cousins two days after that, and then three days later we drove to Missouri and spent New Year’s with Neil’s brother & his family.  We logged a total of 70 hours and just under 4000 miles in the car during our holiday celebrations this year.  Crazy, huh?  The kids were amazingly cooperative, fortunately for all concerned.

I have a lot of pictures, but honestly, I don’t feel like posting them all, and I’m sure you don’t want to look at them all.  And also I mostly took videos this Christmas.  And lastly, most of the time when we were in the car going somewhere I realized that I left my camera behind.  Oh well.

So here are some highlights:


 When my family was here, we visited the candy-cane place again and made our own candy canes, went to a huge live nativity, and made endless platters of delicious food.  One night we had our traditional appetizer feast and it was oh-so-delectable.  I didn’t take very many pictures because I was so busy having fun…I just took pictures of people asleep on the couches because they were so worn out from fun. 
 

 I felt really fortunate that we got to see quite a bit of my sister Ruth and her husband Jordan.  We spent most of the day with them the day after we arrived in Utah (we stayed so late that three of our four children fell asleep) and it was so good to be with them.  

 Then we got together again on Christmas night and made a sweet and savory crepe feast (there is a YouTube video somewhere of Isaac methodically going down the counter and eating all the fruit out of the serving bowls).  And then Ruth went with us on Tuesday to the BYU museums, and we met up with Jordan for lunch, and THEN they very heroically watched our oldest three children (Neil’s mother watched Luke, which was also heroic because he was taking bottles instead of nursing for two feedings!!) so that Neil and I could go skiing on Wednesday (plus they gave us an amazing dinner for our anniversary—more on that later).  Suffice it to say that Neil and I will have a hard time living up to the Most Amazing Day Ever that Ruth and Jordan put on for our kids (Isaac cried for three mornings in a row when we told him that we were not going to visit "Ruuf and Dor-din" that day.  Isaac spent a lot of time firmly ensconced on Jordan's lap watching football and saying things like, "We like dah white guys [BYU was wearing white}, Uncle Dor-din?  Dah white guys win?")


































When we were in Utah we stayed with Neil’s parents and also got to see quite a bit of his siblings and their children.  It was really fun to watch our kids play with their cousins—built-in friends!--and read stories and snuggle with their Utah grandparents, who we don't get to see too much. We went Christmas caroling, made gingerbread houses, and spent a really fun morning/afternoon at his brother’s house making yummy food and playing games. His parents also very kindly watched our kiddos so we could go to the Mount Timpanogos temple, where we were sealed nine years previously, and do sealings together, and then watched them again so we could go out to dinner (plus skiing day).  Whew!!

 Jooj after eating Neil's gingerbread house, because he was sick in bed (we had fun passing a cold all around while we were on vacation!  yay!)


































Speaking of the temple, one thing I really enjoyed about this trip was running.  The second day we were there, I ran the five miles roundtrip to the temple.  It was a beautiful morning and I just ran right up those crazy steep hills looking at the beautiful outline of the mountains against the clouds, and then I got a little choked up looking at the temple and thinking about the last nine years.  On Christmas Eve I met up with my brother-in-law Chad and went for a run with his training group (I ran 6.5 miles and then ran back to his house to spend a lovely hour chatting with my sister-in-law Bridgette while Chad finished out his ten miles).  And then in Missouri my sister-in-law Juli and I battled this INSANE wind for 5.38 miles and had another great talk while we pushed ourselves uphill and down.
We had a lovely treat in visiting Caleb and Juli at the end of our trip—it was wonderful to spend that time with them.  The kids had the time of their lives (Abigail and Asher have always been good pals) and Abigail loved sleeping in the basement with her cousins every night.  We spent the perfect amount of time lounging around talking/playing/watching the Fiesta Bowl (um, hello exciting overtime!!) and then ventured out on Monday to the LDS Visitor’s Center in Independence, MO.  It’s been eight years since I was there so it was a lot of fun to revisit that, and then we swung by Bass Pro Shops on the way home and the kids had a blast checking out all the huge fish and stuffed elk.

Check out Isaac and Enoch in their matching shirts--isn't it crazy how much they look alike?  I was mixing them up all weekend.







 Lots of photos at the visitor's center, but I especially love this one of all of us together in front of the Christus.
 And then we drove home, and it was lovely to be back in our own beds.  And now Luke is crawling and Isaac is working on potty-training, and life marches on. (but more posts to come!)
 

1 comment:

Elise said...

i LOVE all of these posts. thanks for making a long day totally turn up in the end with a series of posts about some of my favorite people! i love you guys!

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