Monday, January 14, 2013

Christmas in Iowa (Wilson)

Part 2 of our adventures in Iowa over Christmas lead us to central Iowa.

On Christmas Eve, my family gathered to celebrate and open gifts.

That night, Christmas Eve Night, my dad read
'Twas the Night Before Christmas'
to all the grandkids like he used to read to use every single year.
There were makeovers...
 and baking...
(me and my little sis)

 Uncle Danny showed the kids how to make chocolate milk with the very last few drops of chocolate in the bottle by pouring milk INTO the chocolate syrup bottle and shaking. 

No cup or stirring spoon necessary.

On Christmas day we had our Wilson Christmas with my entire family. It was so great to see everyone as we usually don't come home for Christmas.  

Grandpa Bob and Tyler with their matching hats!

McKenzie and Meridith

The Saturday after Christmas, we had another big Christmas with my mom's side. 

I don't know how we all managed to cram into the  photo.

 My dad is a New Year's Baby, so he was turning 60 on the first, so weeks ago, my sisters and brother and I started planning a big surprise party for him.  I think we pulled it off, but we still don't know what mom had to tell him to get him in town to the party.  It was a great night, and I was able to see some family friends I hadn't seen in a very long time!

 One night I managed to make it up to my brother's house to play a very inappropriate card game.
Cards Against Humanity.

It was very entertaining and super fun to hang out with my brother's friends!

New Years Eve I spent with my big sis and her husband and some friends.  We went to a dueling piano bar in Des Moines called Blue Moon. Awesome.

 It was a long trip home. Two days of driving. And what's a road trip without someone puking in the back seat just a few hours from home? Yup. Tyler tossed his cookies (raisins actually) coming out of the  mountains. That delayed our arrival time by a good 30 minutes due to clean up. Ick.

That definitely changed the mood, and the smell, for the remainder of the trip.  And to top it off, just 10 miles from home. We hit traffic.  Thank you I95 for never failing to be backed up at random hours of the day.

 We made it home safely and was very thankful for the time we spent with our entire family. The only thing that would have made it complete was to have Nick with us. 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Christmas in Iowa (Turner)

Since Nick was "out of town" for most of December and would be through the new year, the kids and I decided we'd road trip back to Iowa for Christmas. No sense in staying home 'alone' when we could spend it with Grandmas and Grandpas and cousins, right?!

We left in the afternoon after school and headed West! After about 8 hours of driving, we made it to Columbus, OH

We woke up to our first sight of snow! Woooo Hooo!

(if you don't count the 10 minutes of sudden sleet/snow/ice/fog that we hit up in the mountains)

We went from 70mph to about 10 in a matter of seconds.

We had a long day of driving and potential snow storms ahead of us.  When we left that morning we had about 9 hours to SW Iowa.  

14 hours later.... after a stressed out and tired Kim called her husband to so kindly get his family a hotel room booked in Des Moines because there was no way she was driving any farther that day through ice and traffic and .... more ice... and more traffic. 

I'm pretty sure he could tell by the sound of my voice that... I. WAS. DONE. And I'm sure the crying was a big clue too!

So he did. 
And we did. 

And the next morning we got up and drove the last 90 minutes to SW Iowa to Turner Mountain... safe and sound.

The kids immediately dug out their snow gear and sleds and spent most of the daylight hours out in the snow. Even if it was 9 degrees.

 Tyler was overjoyed at the sight of the train set Grandpa put together for him. It is usually around the tree, but there was so many presents under it this year,  it had to go in another spot.

Addison bonded with Grandma and Grandpa's new puppy "Libby".  

In fact, they were inseparable. Libby even followed Addi up to bed each night and laid at the food of the air mattress all night.

(Libby in the bottom left of the photo)

 Turner Mountain was full of adventures...

 Some more exciting than others...

But we had a great time with everyone and it was over before we knew it... and it was on to the other grandma and grandpa's house for more Christmas adventures.