Thursday, December 22, 2016

Christmas activities started early with friends!!

This year it worked out so we got to see some of our friends before Christmas and get to spend Christmas with grandparents.  To kick off the season I sprained my ankle while doing a fun warm-up at the gym - human tic tac toe.  While the last round ended with an injury I will be playing this game again and probably with the kids.   Once I got my air cast and crutches I totally took the doctors advice and rested my foot for 5-7 days (ok more like hours). 
Sunday we helped our chapel kids lead the worship portion of the service.  The next day our friend Tina flew in for a few days.  She was here in time to watch Jon's air assault graduation and have lots of lunch dates.  While Tina was here we made some fun Christmas treats, talked for hours and ate around at different places around town.  Tina flew out and the stomach bug flew in - booo.  Molly had the 24 hour bug and had to miss the last 2 days of school including all the Christmas parties which made her a little sad. 
To kick off the school break we met up with our friends Grace and Clara in Chattanooga and stayed at the ChooChoo hotel and even stayed in a converted train car.  The girls loved getting to sleep in Thomas/Percy or any other name they called it.  Outside our room was an outdoor skating rink so we took the girls and skated and then went across the street to the Hot Chocolatier and tried out different drinks with homemade marshmallows. We ended the night with swimming and then trying to get the little girls to sleep so that Grace and I could stay up until past 12:30am talking! The next morning we rode the trolley and went downtown to an awesome children's museum and spent 6 hours playing and creating.  To end that trip we made a stop by starbuck's and got drinks to make up for missing the past 6 months of our weekly coffee date.
We had a few hours to get things cleaned up and prepared for Granny and BertBurt and now we are having a blast playing with grandparents!!

My twin
She messed hers up a few days before me at our park

Painting canvas art for the bathroom

Our new bathroom artwork

Going to the theater to see The Happy Elf

Went down to the Riverwarlk to see the walking lights

Chapel Christmas program

Monell's with Tina

Air Assault graduation

Making Christmas treats

Graduation cupcakes


Christmas PJ

Chattanooga Choo Choo


Making up for 6 months of no coffee dates - 36 hours of taking and coffee drinking

Ice Skating

The girls all decided they didn't need the blue helper

Right down the way from our train car

The girls!

The big girls!

And now - shopkins with the grandparents!

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Thanksgiving, Christmas Lights, Bike Rides and Camping!

The month of November was crazy busy and flew by - one day I will get back to blogging within a few days of things happening but for now I will just throw up a few blogs so I can have the pictures to look back on later in life.  
We went on a family bike ride at the Greenway in town.  We learned some valuable info always go to the left if you go to the right from the parking lot it is full of crazy hills!  
November is the month to remember to be thankful and we made our annual thankful tree where we add leaves to the tree each day with things we are thankful for.  Also we got some information about Christmas light displays around town and visited some and will continue to drive around to find some more this month.
Jon and I decided it would be fun to spend a weekend camping at Mammoth Cave and so we loaded up our stuff and hit the road.  The night before we read about the fire ban going on so we threw some extra layers and wool socks in our gear thinking this would be enough.  Once we got to Mammoth Cave we realized our luggage with clothes was sitting in the house so we were praying the clothes on our back and our sleeping bags would keep us warm enough!  We had scheduled to gon on the Drips and Domes tour and loved it.  The girls enjoyed exploring the cave.  After our cave tour we went back to our campsite and made dinner at our camp stove and by 5pm the girls were ready to go to the tent because the sun had set so it was dark and cold.  We held them out until 6 with their headlamps but then they really wanted to get in the tent.  After getting them bundled up Jon and I sat in our camp chairs pretending there was fire in the firepit and held out until 8 but then we were freezing and got into our sleeping bags to warm up.  In the morning we all got up and it was decided one night was long enough with no fresh clothes, no wool socks, no shower kit (so no brushing teeth) and no fire we could play around all day and when the sun was setting we would be driving home.  After trying to warm up with hot chocolate, coffee and eggs we packed up the tent and hit the trails.  8 miles later we were back at the car with kids that were hungry and tired.  We will be going back because the area was beautiful and there is so much more to see but we had pushed our little people enough.  
Thanksgiving this year was so fun we got to be with all our grandparents - which makes up for the past few years of not getting to be with any.  Jon's parents hosted us and invited my parents up for the day so the girls got to be truly spoiled by everyone.  We spent the time at the cabin exploring in the woods, playing in the hot tub and getting tractor rides from PaPa.  It is so nice to be able to get away and just hang out with family!  We also got to be with Aunt Jenn, Uncle Slaw and Everly who the girls could not leave alone - they loved getting to play with their cousin.

Getting ready for a 4 mile bike ride

Perfect trail - before the hills

Our thankful tree

I got to be part of a prayer meeting and I was in charge of the deployed solider section

Finding new parks in town - thanks to friends who share 

Jellystone Christmas Lights

Bonfire and movie

Picture with Santa

Lunch before the cold and cave

Ready to camp

Exploring the caves

Thankful for neighbors who share their hammocks

The sun is out so we are all happy

It was really cold when we woke up

Trying to warm up

The start of a 5 mile hike turned 8 miles

Crossing the bridge

We got to share the trail with horses, bikes and people

Cinderella getting ready for a teaparty birthday with friends

The little girls

A slide down the stairs!! I want one

Clock struck 8 - she was back to cleaning up for her school movie night

Getting to eat treats at the American Doll store

Watching daddy play flag football with his unit before we left for the mountain

PaPa and BertBurt with the girls

NeNe and Granny getting things ready in the kitchen

Lawn mower rides with Jon

Tractor rides with Papa

Hot tub fun

Friendly competition on the wii

Playing with Everly

More hot tub - but this time it started to sleet

Jesse Tree ornament exchange