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:
We do have dozens of photos just like these from each leg of our trip. Whatever it takes to keep them occupied right?