On the 10th Mike flew in and Mom and I were at a cookie decorating class. It was a lot of fun! I'm not amazing yet.. but watch out! We really just hung out for the first week. We did get to see Niki and Ray. Niki is one of my closest friends from high school and we have stayed close through out life. We went over to their house for dinner and took them some our awesome cookies. Isabel was asking for a cookie and Niki said they have a rule at their house... you have to ask "may I please...." or you must wait 5 min before asking again (I LOVE this rule.. we are incorporating it in our home) so she needed to wait. Isabel turns to Keegan (their 6 yo son)and says "you ask". So Keegan asked correctly. Needless to say they got their cookies, and props for using teamwork. :)
If you only knew how often this took place. Stella would squeal or scream for a cookie if she saw anyone else with it. Then she figured out how to take the lid off the tupperware to get her own.. these were not small cookies people.
We took the girls to Seattle and walked around the Seattle center area. HOLY COW... I forgot how fortunate we are here in St. Louis...everything is either free or really cheap. The zoo=free, science center=free botanical gardens=$6 the arch=free to see the museum and a nominal fee to ride to the top. Seattle= NO FREE. We went up to the Space Needle and ate lunch at the 360 degree restaurant. Isabel LOVED it. The food was delicious. It was really a fantastic family date. Afterwards we went to see the troll under the Freemont bridge. I just love my little family!
We found the toy soliders
Love this picture of Daddy and Stella!
It was so cold!
Bunny ears when they don't know are the best.
Troll under the bridge, and no, I have no idea why on earth I am standing like that.
Izzy spent most every morning out feeding the horses, Stella did go one time but it was so cold. Leslie even indoctrinated Isabel on how to properly climb to the top of the hay bales and camp out.
The girls feeding
We played with the Bonnell's again. We got a picture of Averi and Stella hanging out in the swing together... they were not too amused.
This was taken one night after we got back from seeing Eric and Amy Radimak. I forgot to get pictures with them.. but Stella loved her Grandpa.
Stella talking with Grandpa
We did an advent calender while we were there. It was not as fantastic as I had hoped, but it was a start... and more importantly got me FINALLY using something I had pinned on pintrest. :) So the activity one night was to make smore's. So downstairs we went in front of the fireplace. We let Isabel roast her own marshmellows this time. She was pretty excited.
We did have a great visit the Great Gpa and Ma.. Aunt Sue and Uncle Jerry along with the rest of the McLees family. It was been too long since we have really visited with everyone and 8 Christmas's ago since I was there. Leslie and I each received a newspaper from the Seattle-Post Intelligencer from the day we were born. Pretty cool.
All the men on my Dad's side.
Gpa Gerry, Uncle Jerry, Jacob, Dad and Mike
And the Ladies.. I had to get on of my mom smiling. We were all laughing at how hard it is to make her smile with eyes open
Grandma Donna, Mom, my, Aunt Sue, Leslie and of course, Isabel and Stella
One tradition many of my friends do with their families is to have matching pajamas for Christmas. So I decided I would make them for my family... then added mom and dad since it was just two more.. then added Leslie and Jacob because I thought it would be fun. After MANY tears and frustrations and a few laughs all eight pairs of pajama pants were made. most didn't fit right but everyone wore them and at least pretended to like them!
Here are all 8 pairs of pajama pants I made!!! Oh and my awesome family.
This was Christmas eve... hanging out and Leslie and I reliving life when we were kids.
Isabel's favorite cookie she left for Santa.
Christmas morning we woke up with this.
The following moments were so fun... Isabel was able to finally join the tradition of the littlest passing out gifts.. she got sidetract a few times and wanted to just start opening her own. We got a couple of great pictures of Gma smiling and looking happy... just imagine for those that might know mom.... eyes open AND smiling. IT's A MIRACLE!!!
The girls enjoyed their matching glowing rings... Stella was pretty much done after opening this... and it was in her stocking.
Isabel was SO excited that she received all four boy barbie dolls that she wanted. Flynn is her favorite.
And after Christmas... mom and dad played a board game with us.. yea my parents playing pictionary is PRICELESS.. especially for a dad who thinks so technically.
We had such a great trip and can't wait to do it again.. although Mike may not be able to stay for as long! :)
And saying goodbye to Auntie Leslie!