We enjoyed our trip to Texas to spend Christmas with my family. It was a long road trip with the kids, but we survived. I don't really want to be cooped up in a car for that long with a 14 month old any time soon again, but loved the time we had together as a family sans screaming.
Santa was good to Avery and Braden, and Uncle Jase outdid himself with Avery's present. He surprised her with her very own Barbie Jeep. Who knew a 3 year old did not need a license to drive! Braden likes to ride beside her as much as she enjoys to drive it. Unfortunately, it is still parked in Texas, but my parents are bringing when they come to visit over spring break. Avery was such a good kid, not being greedy or acting selfish, and she hasn't even asked about it! We're keeping it that way for now. I know she'll be excited when she sees it again.
Braden of course enjoyed the boxes and wrapping as much as the presents enclosed. He's at a super fun age right now. I'm enjoying every minute of his life. He's learning new words, and it's fun watching him communicate with pats, points, and expressions.
I'm afraid I didn't do Kenny justice with his presents because we were keeping our spending low this year, but he outdid himself with a surprise trip for me to re-visit our cabin where we stayed on our honeymoon! (Complete with pre-set babysitting! I don't even have to worry about setting that up!) I've been dropping hints, and outright asking for some time away for just us, not thinking it would happen due to budget constraints, but what a fun surprise!!! Kudos to Kenny!
While in Texas, the kids enjoyed time with Grammy and Pop, playing games, trying out new toys, putting together puzzles, and making a gingerbread house. Avery began requesting that from Grammy before we even set out on our journey. She was a little sad to see it was more of a process than she thought, and would have been content to just eat the candy. It turned into a project for the entire family, and will always be a fond memory tucked into my heart.
We've been home this week, and have thoroughly enjoyed our time with Daddy home. Avery keeps asking why he's not at work, but loves the fact that he's not! We're spoiled and will be lonely when Monday rolls around.
We were also surprised with a visit from my long time friend, Shelley (and her husband and kids), whom I met at Harding. Our lives have been intertwined since our first hello. We've shared so many things in common, from family similarities, lifestyles, likes, dislikes, college classes, workplaces, to having both of our kids within weeks of each other. It was such a joy to get to visit with them on their way back from Florida this week. My dream of having our kids play together came true and was fantastic even if it was only for a short time. Avery and Easton met each other one time before when they were both not even a year old. Thursday evening they were reunited as 3 1/2 year olds, and were able to introduce their brothers to each other. Braden was instantly smitten with Shelley and turned into a snuggle bug with her. He thought Lawson was funny the way he danced to everything! The entire night was a blast! What fun! If only we lived closer....
Kenny and I realize that we are truly blessed, and pray with all of our hearts that 2009 will bring us as much joy.