Saturday, December 17, 2011

The Nutcracker!

What a fun day we ladies had at the ballet. Annika and Morgan (and my sister and i of course) were so excited to go out on the town for a fancy lunch and to see the dancers. They did amazingly well and we made it through the entire performance. It was so fun to see their eyes light up when they saw the pretty dancers. Thanks mom for a great day!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Monday, December 5, 2011

We got to spend Thanksgiving this year in the midwest with some of the Van Essen clan. We had to miss the big reunion this past summer so Eric promised me we could take the kids out for the holiday. I want our kids to see what a big, fun, crazy family they have out there and to grow up having memories of spending time with cousins  and more cousins and more cousins just like I did. 

Annika was so excited to go on the airplane she would ask us every morning leading up to the trip if we would be going "arriba y abajo" (Eric's editor's note "up and down") on the airplane today. Finally we woke her up early Thanksgiving morning and headed to SFO. We were greeted with beautiful weather and open arms. Aunt Gloria and Uncle Brian were amazingly hospitable allowing us to use their car, securing two car seats for us and two pack n plays...guess who are itching to be grandparents;) We stayed a couple of days with them and a night with Aunt Marcia and Uncle Ryan and then a couple of nights with Gramma Great. We got to see 4 sets of aunts and uncles, 10 cousins their spouses and many of the greats and of course got to play many fun rounds of cards over many cups of coffee. Hopefully we can make it out for a big reunion soon. Annika will be in heaven with all of those cousins who she affectionately calls her "friends". (Uncle Brian I have to say she talks about you the most. You definitely won her little heart. You and Charlie of course.) 

With all the fun and festivities we were only able to get a few pictures. Here they are:
 Having so much fun at the airport. Annika was a great little traveler. We hadn't taken her on an airplane since she turned 2 so it was fun to see her excitement this time.

 Aunt Marcia, Annika and Tucker. The girls followed poor Tucker around all day.

 Audrey and her babies at Gramma Greats. We have similar pictures of Annika and those bears when she was a baby.
 Audrey and Gramma Great
 The girls did so well. We were not sure how it would go moving from house to house but they were troopers and slept amazingly well. Eric is ready to dig a basement and put our kids down there to sleep. We had to wake them up from their naps so that they would go to bed on time.
 Looking at the airplanes
 Audrey attacking me to get the phone. I can hardly take a picture of her anymore now.
We do have dozens of photos just like these from each leg of our trip. Whatever it takes to keep them occupied right?