Sunday, December 31, 2017

ISU bowl game bound!

Our team played in the Liberty Bowl in Memphis so we all hit the road after our Christmas celebrations!
This girl was super excited!
They spent quite a while creating sun barriers for the windows so they could take a "nap" since we left so early!
After we arrived and checked in at our hotel, we headed to this awesome Bass Pro Shops!  It was shaped like a pyramid!
Inside you can ride up in this huge tower for a view from the top!
Here we are riding up!
The kids had a blast doing this.
Family pic from the top!
There's Memphis!
There was this little rooftop restaurant we walked through.
That's the glass elevator in the background- so neat!
We headed back down and just explored- it was huge and so unique!
Not like any Bass Pro we've ever seen.
There was even this little pond inside with real fish!
Of course we have to do some shooting while at Bass Pro!
Daddy is just as into it as the kids!  Ha!
I mean, cool, right?
Love this little Cyclone
Love this guy too!
Of course checking out the big aquarium and all the fish!
Someone was all tuckered out from exploring and it was getting super late and we tried to eat dinner in the Fish bowl restaurant but it was a long wait so we headed to Cracker Barrel.
Chocolate chip pancakes for dinner makes this guy pretty happy!
I think Kerigan barely made it through dinner without falling asleep!
They crashed back at the hotel! They wanted to have a sleepover. So sweet!
The next morning we were all up bright and early for the Cyclone pep rally!
Andrew is our loyal Cyclone fan, even though we live in Hawkeye country!
This girl has been a little brainwashed by our neighbors, her classmates and friends but being at the game certainly helped her realize the Cyclones are pretty awesome!
We talked about being fans of both teams, and she's good with that!
Eating a hot dog with Daddy!
Can't get enough of that toothless grin!
She was a fan :)
This guy enjoyed his popcorn with Ga Ga
Here comes the team!
The rally got everyone excited for the game the next day!
The kids with Ga Ga and Papa outside the rally
After the rally we looked up places to eat in Memphis and found this gem...
We could not get enough of this fun place!
They bring you straws and toothpicks to literally blow the toothpicks onto the ceiling!
The kids just had an absolute blast
Even the adults got in on the fun!  Ha ha!

If you're ever in Memphis, you must visit this place!
Kerigan's face says it all!
Not only was it fun, the food was delicious too!
I'm telling you these two were so bummed we can't go here every day.  They cannot wait to go back.  Andrew even saved a toothpick and it has a place of honor on his shelf! We will always remember the fun at Huey's!

Friday, December 29, 2017

christmas 2018

After the morning at Ga Ga's, we headed back home for Christmas Eve at our house.  I always want the kids to wake up at their own house on Christmas morning so this is something we just always make work.
We played games and the kids enjoyed playing with their gifts from Ga Ga and Papa.
He's teaching her young!  Ha!
And Belle had fun hanging out on top of the presents!  Since her tree skirt was blocked with gifts she made due!  Ha ha.
Papa loves to cook ham and the kids always enjoy watching the process!

After dinner we went out to spread our reindeer dust from Buddy on the lawn!  We had gotten a dusting of snow so it worked out perfectly!
I think this is one of my very favorite traditions.  There's just something so magical about it.  There's just nothing like experiencing Christmas through the eyes of a child.
We came inside and the kids had cocoa and cookies!
While the grown ups had moscow mules, of course!
Daddy read the Christmas story from their Bible
As well as the Night Before Christmas.
The kids reluctantly said goodbye to Buddy.  They love that he puts himself in a jar so they can hold him!
Oh the anticipation!
Santa came!

And I loved Buddy's note to them on the windows!  Ha!
Annual stocking picture on Christmas morning!
They were beyond excited!  They open their stockings so fast and they both want to talk to me and tell me what they got at the same time!
Belle is always in on this action!
Santa had to put in a special order for this rare ninja turtle figure!
He's set with Legos!  He will have fun over break putting all of them together.
Santa even wrapped things in special North Pole boxes!  You know, since Amazon Prime isn't really something from Santa!  Ha!

Andrew had been wanting flippers and a snorkel set for the pool this summer!
And he was really into the Grossery Gang figures this year.
Santa found all of them in his workshop and delievered!
We love having Ga Ga and Papa here- the kids love to show them all their new toys.
The Descendants love spilled over into Christmas as well!
This girl got a real mermaid swim tail!
And fins!  She couldn't have been happier about this!
In fact, she opened the rest of her gifts with it on, ha!
At the bottom of their sacks was an envelope with a note... neither of them had received their most anticipated gifts yet... so they knew the hunt was on!
Andrew's face when Daddy was helping him figure out his first clue!
Santa got smart this year and gave them two separate scavenger hunts so they wouldn't fight over reading and finding the clues!  Ha!  (He must've gotten that tip from the Easter Bunny!)

I tried chasing them all over the house to take pictures!

Clearly I saw Kerigan more than Andrew!  Ha!
I was actually videoing her reaction here so this is a screen shot from that.  She was thrilled to get Ashlyn- her Wellie Wisher American Girl.
Same thing here- a screen shot of the video I took.
He had been begging for a Nintendo Switch and Mario Odyssey!  Mom and Dad had been telling him it was too expensive, but Santa can afford everything, right?  (Insert eye rolling emoji here). He was beyond excited.
I always have to take a picture of the aftermath- Ha!
Literally, nowhere to walk!
Once all the opening is done, it's time to play with everything!  She had a blast hatching her Hatchimal twins!

And driving her AG dolls in their new car!
It was about this time that we learned that Andrew had woken up at 2am because he had been so excited about Christmas morning.  He.was.exhausted.  He had looked at the presents under the tree, and watched TV in the basement until morning!  He was acting all quiet and strange and I thought he was sick but turns out he just couldn't keep his eyes open!  He literally took a nap the entire rest of the day!
Kerigan's other sibling (ha!) came over so the girls could exchange gifts.
Then they played for a while.  Meanwhile... Andrew still sleeping.
As I was cleaning up I found these cute things Kerigan had written in her new journal.

So sweet.
Andrew finally woke up around dinner time!  Ha!  He was bummed that Ga Ga and Papa had left and he had wasted the entire day sleeping.  I don't think he'll ever get up that early again!
He cheered up for our family game night!
Googly eyes fun!
And we finished off the night surrounded by Christmas lights and a new movie the kids had gotten for Christmas.  Perfection.

This was a different year because the only time we could schedule our Christmas with my Dad's side was a couple days after Christmas.  We were heading out of town on a special road trip anyway so the next day it was back to Ga Ga and Papa's after a quick pit stop at their mall!
They love Ga Ga and Papa's spa room and hot tub bubble bath!
The next night was the Ellett Christmas!
I love my niece and nephew so much!  We were so lucky to grow up together and now we all have kids around the same ages (even though I'm 7-8 years older than them!  Ha!)
This is my nephew's little girl, Lucy.  I love how they're holding hands!  Such sweet girls.
Then there's this little man!
Nash is my niece's little boy and he's so much fun!
All the kiddos!
It happened to be sweet Caprice's birthday so we had cupcakes to celebrate!

Silly girls!
The girls and our kiddos!  This picture was so funny because I had no idea as I was posing the kids that Lucy had wanted to stand by Andrew.  So I moved Andrew over by Nash so Nash would stay in the picture (he loves Andrew, too!  Ha!)  And I never knew Lucy was making this face!  She was not thrilled.  Ha!
So once we figured out what was wrong I took their picture together and she was so happy!  So funny.
We hate having to say goodbye to this little man and his mama!  They are heading back to South Carolina.  But we will see them this summer!
This was the only family picture we got over all the official Christmas celebrations!
Love these two so much!

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