January 6, 2010

Super-duper-mega-road trip-Xmas-NYE-holiday-family-fun-thing...

(((Disclaimer... this post is four days in the making. I swear, one of these days, I will get my groove back!)))

Part I:

...Let's just start off by saying that I am still recovering from this one...

We decided to spend Christmas Eve and Christmas Day enjoying the comforts of our own home (highly recommended), and we compensated for our guilt by planning an insane trip through many states in not so many days.

We planned to leave bright and early the morning after Christmas, but the threatening weather in KS and the actual weather in our destination spots pushed us back a day.

Sunday morning, we woke up with a planned departure time of 4:30 am... our usual. However, Iowa and Minnesota were still experiencing significant snowfall,s o we waited even longer and didn't end up leaving until around 7:30 am (Mistake #1). There is a (good) reason why we typically leave between 4:00 and 4:30 in the morning. It gives us enough time to achieve a little sleep, us drivers. In the same respect, it practically ensured sleepy little backseat travelers for a good portion of the early trip. Not so when we leave at 7:30 am...

We stopped off for about an hour to visit with Ty's grandma in Iowa, north of Ames. The girls tore around her apartment, nearly broke several of her fragile figurines, and unrolled an entire roll of toilet paper in the guest bathroom. Oh, and they also exchanged gifts.

We piled back into the car for the final 2.5 hours up to Tyler's parents house in Mankato, MN. We arrived, warmed up for a minute, succumbed to the frigidness again as we unpacked the car, thawed out, enjoyed a turkey dinner, and waited for Uncle Adam to arrive so that we could have our "Christmas" together.

Once Uncle Adam arrived home, Grand,a and Sassy began to unwrap gifts:

Bentley helped:

Little A got a set of the sensory balls that she loves from PAT:

She even explored them with her senses:

Little A donned her new slippers, just like the ones her big sister has, and shared her toys with Bentley:

After a great night's sleep where we all caught up like we desperately needed to the inevitable harrowing first night of little to no sleep that we experience every.single.time we travel, the girls were raring to go. Sassy was crawling out of her skin with anticipation of playing in the actual snow that MN had. We got her all bundled up:

And, we had one excited little snow bunny:

She was a bit tentative at first, seeing all that snow:

I enjoyed my time outside right from the deck. You know, with little A sleeping peacefully inside and all... It was gorgeous, though:

Tyler pulled Sassy in the sled for a while, and then he sent her sailing with pushes from behind. She was as happy as a frozen little clam:

Meanwhile, Little A woke from her nap and decided that it was time to play. It looks like she was trying to hide something:

Oh, wait. Maybe it's the ginormous bruise in the middle of her forehead that she acquired on Christmas Day by diving head-first into Sassy's head board. Yeah, maybe that's it!

Little A spent some time begging Uncle Adam for food. That's just a day in the life for Little A:

Uncle Adam = new BFF:

Does anyone else find it peculiar that out of four sensory balls, she favors the yellow one? Just me? OK.

Little A had a ball playing with the banana sticker:

We went to the mall two days in a row to allow the girls some time to expend energy. Oh, and maybe to allow Mom to do a little post-Christmas shopping, too.

Little A did go outside and play in the snow on day #2 with Sassy and Ty. I was just too busy too lazy to bundle up and capture the photographic memories. Bad Mommy.

The girls spent our final night in MN spending some quality time with Gpa:

And, Gma:

And, at 4:30 am on December 30th, we were off to our next destination...

To be continued...

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