Thursday, December 31, 2015

Obermayer Christmas Celebration

Each year, on December 27th, for as long as I can remember, we get together with my mom's side of the family in Chicago.  I look forward even more to this celebration now, because everyone is spread out across the country, and it is one of two times each year that I get to see my cousins and their kids, who are similar in age to Summer, Colton, and Larkyn.  We drove 6 hours to Chicago on Saturday the 26th, and then the kids had a blast swimming at the hotel pool that afternoon!

We then went out for hotdogs at a Chicago favorite, Portillos.  The next day we all drove to my Aunt Nancy's house.  The kids had fun playing together.

GeeGee & her great-grandkids: Larkyn (1), Colton (3), Summer (5), Jemma (1), Jade (3) Cruz (5), Cora (3), Rowan (7).

Then some people went to pick up Chicago style pizza (mmmm!) and bring it back for dinner.  

The "big" kids table - Rowan (7), Cruz (5), Summer (5), Cora (3), Jade (3) Colton (3)

The cousins/babies table, including Larkyn (1) and Jemma (1).

The four lucky guys to have married into our clan - Roger, Eric, Paul, and Nate.

The "adults" :) - My mom and dad, Aunt Nancy and Uncle Paul, GeeGee, and Uncle Gary.

The original Obermayer family (except my Grandpa who is in heaven).

We had dessert as our dinner :)
Due to the CRAZY winter ice storm that suddenly was predicted for the following day when we were to drive home, Paul suggested we leave that night and drive straight home instead of back to the hotel.  Even though we didn't get in until 1:30am, I am so glad we did!  The roads were so ice-y and bad in Chicago the following day, that when my cousin's flight was cancelled, my uncle couldn't even drive to the airport to go pick them up!  It was quite an adventure with 3 families having flights that day and all getting very much delayed or cancelled!  I am glad everyone is safely home or in transit now - we loved seeing you all!  Thanks for the pictures, Mom!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Christmas Eve and Morning 2015

Placing the Christmas Eve Star on the felt advent calendar the kids' great-grandma made and used when their grandpa was little.  Special.

This year, we were home on Christmas Eve and Christmas morning, which was really fun and relaxing!  We didn't need to drive anywhere either day, which was a first for us!  I soaked up every moment and LOVED our two days with our family. 

Paul was home on Christmas Eve, and we spent the day relaxing and playing all day.  We had a late brunch of French Toast, and then an early dinner at Applebees before our Christmas Eve service.  We then came home and made our 4th annual graham cracker houses.

On Christmas morning, we (parents!) slept in until 8:30 (!!!), however we heard an excited little voice belting out "Go Tell It On the Mountain) around 6:50!  Thankfully, she kept herself entertained with a book, giving mom, dad, brother, and sister a bit more zzzzzzz ;). 

Summer was SO excited to give us her present, a plate she had decorated at school, and wanted us to open it first thing! We then used it when we ate our breakfast of pancakes, and graham cracker houses (the one morning of the year I let the kids eat candy for breakfast!).

Reading while waiting for mom and dad to finish the breakfast dishes :)
 We completed the last ornament on our Jesse Tree advent calendar (which I LOVED this season by the way - it totally kept our minds grounded on the real meaning of Christmas and how the people in the Bible looked forward to Jesus' coming and pointed toward the Savior just as we await Christmas - will totally be reused next year!) and Daddy read the Christmas story.

Then - present time!  This year, each kiddo had 5 gifts to open.  Each kid got
  • binoculars (Summer has been asking for binoculars for almost a year now, and both kids loved using Grandpa T's, so all three kids were excited about their binoculars!), 
  • two presents containing books (Ten Commandment/Beatitude Mystery series for Summer, Lightning McQueen books for Colton, and a good night Bible, a favorite library book - Baby ABC - and Elmo books for Larkyn), and 
  • two presents with toys relating to their interests (Summer got a doll desk and school set, Colton got a battery powered train and hill pieces to add to his train track set, and Larkyn got an Elmo ABC puzzle and a puppy) . 
 I had so much fun shopping for them this year - they are at such fun ages!

I am so glad ALL THREE kids love books - it is my favorite way to cuddle!

After presents, we spent the WHOLE afternoon playing!  Summer and I spent a long time getting her "doll school" set up.

Daddy and Colton built train tracks and tried out Colton's new battery powered train. 

Then we all built train tracks. 

Then we all made books for the doll school library. 

 When Larkyn woke up from her nap, we snacked on popcorn and watched Frosty the Snowman.

We finished off the day with a crockpot potroast dinner.  I am so thankful for our family and for the time we got to spend together!

Here is a "not so short" 18 minute shortened version of our Christmas morning on video.  I know it is long (!) but I am including it as this blog is not only a place for us to share our life with family and friends, but also my place to store family memories so we can go back and remember each stage.  This video is packed full of memories for me, from the way the kids talk at this age to the atmosphere of the day.  Here it is :)