My Mom and us girls all went to the Army Museum here on post. I am amazed at how many museums they have here in Leavenworth, and the best part is they are free! This one was very rich in history and known artifacts about Leavenworth, and how this post came to be. Some of the more interesting facts (to me) were about the Army wives. They were not allowed on post unless they were laundresses, and only 4 at a time were allowed on. They ended up marrying non-commissioned officers and being able to stay on post after being married for a year. Crazy huh? Some of the military weapons were huge and very heavy back then. Plus all the Infantry gear they had to carry was quite a load. We also got to see the many different stages of carriages throughout the years that were developed. It was really cool;) The girls all loved the life-sized horses, and the detail to some of them was un-real! I definitely wouldn't mind going through that one again and really being able to read everything.
This is what the General's wore back then.
This is what the Enlisted Soldier's barracks looked like. (Where they slept)
This is what the women wore who were allowed on post as laundressess.
David and Hailey got to go to a pro-football game on Christmas Eve. It was the KC Chiefs against the LA Raiders. Even though it was maybe 39 degrees outside, they had a great time together, with lots of photos and of course the memory to last a lifetime. The game got off to a rocky start, and two minutes left in the 4th Quarter, the Chiefs tied the game. The Raiders intercepted shortly into overtime and won (unfortunately). David and Hailey both want to make this a tradition to go every season:)
We have had a very busy week with Julia here, and then my mom coming. We have tried to fit in as much as we could, and in the midst of it all, my Mom broke her toe! Yes, unfortunately she dropped a heavy bookend on her left pinkie toe, and broke it. It swelled up nice and pretty, with black and blue markings to boot. Luckily, this was after our Zoo and pre-shopping adventure so she has a few days to re-cover before the chaos begins again:)
I got some snap shots of the kids in their Christmas pj's and some more pictures to come:)
I hope everyone has a great CHRISTmas and remember that family and close friends always make the season bright.
It FINALLY snowed here in Leavenworth, KS. The forecast has been projecting it on and off for a couple of weeks, and it finally did last night. Oh, what a beautiful sight it was. Even though it was only about an inch, it still was beautiful to see first thing in the morning:) My girls have never seen snow so this was a big surprise for them. I woke Julia and Hailey up when I got home from work so they could play in it for a little bit. They actually were able to roll snowballs and throw them at each other! The not so fun part was all the frozen water in the morning. It made for quite a slippery sidewalk. Hailey actually fell trying to get out the sled. (Yes, they were dying to try it out.) Here are some photos from our little snow adventure:)
As you can see, whatever was in the sun had already melted, so my kids were really just sledding on grass:)
We have had the pleasure of having Julia stay with us, but of course it did not come without any bumps in the road. (unfortunately). For one thing, Josh brought home a "stomach bug" that has been going around his school. He was throwing up about twice an hour for 7 hours straight. YUCK! Well, come to find out, his class had 7 kids out with the same thing! No good! The next day we picked Julia up, then Saturday, David and I had a version of it, and yesterday Audrey had it right after church. Terrible timing! But as we are praying that it stops picking us off one by one, we decided to have a baking day. Julia, Hailey and I were in the kitchen for most of the afternoon baking away, and we are going to deliver some of the goodies tonight, while looking at Christmas lights. Here are some pictures of our kitchen adventure:)
This week has flown by, and I still am not totally prepared for Christmas but at least my tree is up, my gifts are bought (not all of them sent yet..Grrr), and partial goodies made. BUT~ I have done playgroup this month, mastered the art of cleaning up after throw-up, have managed to get control of the laundry, and got the kids' Christmas gifts for their teachers and all the goodies for their classes besides the normal doctor and dental visits that happen to fall this time of year for our family. On a better note...da, da, DA! In one week my MOM is coming..YEAH! We haven't had family for FOUR big and very long years around the holidays, and finally my mom is breaking that not so great tradition. I am very excited to have her come, and Hailey gets a surprise visitor this Friday, her bff from Hawaii just got stationed at Ft. Leanardwood, MO, so we are traveling half way to meet the McIlquam's so Julia can come and stay for a week! We will be busy, but would not have it any other way during this holiday season! Hope yours is as joyous and bright:)
I guess I wasn't lucky enough to have only ONE child experiment with scissors. Some of you may remember when Hailey decided right before family pictures on Easter, but she chopped her bangs up to her scalp as she was cutting her horses' hair, and that took a while to grow back. Well, now Avery cut Audrey's hair in chunks all in the back. I was at work, (why do these things happen whenever Mommy isn't home? I am starting to see a real pattern here!) the girls got into Hailey's room again and took her scissors to cut their Barbie's hair, then their blankets, then Audrey, I assume, signed herself up to get her own hair cut. The "funny" part (if any of this is considered funny) is she decided to stroll in front of Daddy while he was watching his Bears play football to see if he would notice! Ummm....yeah he noticed all right! Needless to say, they are no longer allowed out of his sight when he is home with them. (we will see how long that lasts) I am truly amazed at some of the things they come up with to get into! I do not have any doubt that I WILL have grey hair by the time I am 40 without fail!
The picture up top is so deceitful because that is when they show Mommy how cute and adorable they are, but they can be the littlest stinkers to say the least when you turn your back, even for a second!
UPDATE! When I looked at it this morning, that is when I had a good cry, because the back was much shorter than the front. I could not make it even, so I decided to take her and have it professionally done. I knew they would have to do an A-Line type cut on her, and yet another surprise, when the lady was cutting her hair, underneath the top layer, was about a dime size amount of hair that was no less than 2 inches from her scalp.
The next few are her at the salon. The lady was really nice, but Audrey wouldn't budge, she was mad, and as some of you know very stubborn! In the end, the lady offered to paint her fingernails if she smiled, and finally she did...
Even though the song states "Tis the season to be jolly...". I am feeling more like "Tis the season to be overwhelmed, exhausted, not enough time in the day to get everything done..la, la, la LA!"
I know not everything has to be perfect, and the tree trimmed just right, or the right amount of perfectly wrapped gifts under the tree, etc. etc. etc. But I do feel that I should try my very hardest to make it special and unique for the kiddos. When you throw traditions in the mix, it can get to be just too much! So, I have proposed to my family a new way of doing things at Christmas time. We DO NOT have to have the tree up, Christmas lights on the house, and all the decor out on Thanksgiving weekend. We CAN drink hot chocolate every night if we want to, we CAN go look at lights numerous times in different neighborhoods, (Not just on Christmas Eve), we CAN let the kids wrap their own gifts to each other, (this will be a hard one for mom), we DO NOT have to have all the shopping done before December, and most importantly, we CAN actually try and ENJOY the season, and remembering the Spirit. If I can achieve at least two of these things, I will be a happy camper:)
As we slave in the kitchen on Thanksgiving, I am reminded of the song "Because I have been given much, I too must give.." I am very fortunate to have such a giving husband and family. Even when I feel down or alone, I know that they try to cheer me up as best they can. I have a roof over my head, beautiful and healthy children, and a husband who provides for me. I have the church to guide me and give me added comfort in times of great despair. As some of you may know I just received a calling in our new ward as 2nd counselor in the Relief Society Presidency. As I feel VERY overwhelmed, my blessing when I was set apart gave me such admiration and strength for my fellow ward members, and the Bishop, that I know there is a reason for this. I just hope I can give to them as much as I know I am going to receive.
I want all of you to know how much I appreciate and love your friendship and guidance throughout the years, for you have pulled me out of the darkest of times, and enlightened me in the best of days. Have a beautiful and safe Thanksgiving everyone:)
Today was Josh's Birthday, and ,I am reminiscing about how he was little, and such a cuddle bug. I love how he always wakes up happy and excited to start a new day, ready for any adventure! He of course woke up very excited and wanted the world to know that it was his birthday. He got some cool toys from Mom and Dad, some fun board games from Grandma, and some birthday $$ that he couldn't wait to spend. After breakfast, we went to Wal-Mart so he could spend some of his cash, and then to this really cool restaurant called the "T-Rex Cafe". It is really animated with dinosaurs and themed rooms. We were in the "Glacier Room" with a HUGE wholly-mammoth in front of it, and every so often the "Ice Sculptors" above us would change different colors. They had a "Fern Room" a "Friend-a-sauros" room, etc. They all had Dino's that would occasionally talk or roar. It was very loud to say the least in there. The food was "OK" at best but the dessert was spectacular! They had one called the "chocolate extinction" that had four slices of cake with ice cream topped with whipped cream and butter-finger bits, and in the middle of it was a dry-ice volcano thing that would erupt when they brought it out to the table. Needless to say, Josh's face and smile was priceless:) Due to technical difficulty, my camera stopped working all-together when it came time for the b-day song. (of course, just my luck). I was only able to capture one picture from the restaurant, but at least Josh will have the memories:) He was tuckered out by the end of the day, and happily playing in his room with a $12.00 sword he got.
I guess I can definitely learn from this experience because no matter how much u spend on them they always find happiness in the little things...in my case it cost me roughly $12.00 to make his day:)
This past week we went to the zoo, and it was such a nice break! There was so much to see and do, that we didn't even get to half of it. One of the coolest things they have is a polar bear exhibit, where you can see him, and he had a viewing area with a big pool so you can see underwater this HUGE polar bear swimming and doing flips, it is really cool. There are a lot of animals here that we didn't get to see in Hawaii, so all of us were in "Ah". They also have a carousel,a tram, and a train ride. During the summer, they even have a boat ride. I liked the Africa part of the zoo that is over 95 acres of animals like elephants, giraffes, zebras baboons, cheetahs, gorillas, exotic birds and other wildlife associated with that country. I am so glad we went, and the kids did a great job, especially with no strollers, no capri-suns, excess snacks, no diapers, no extra clothes, MAN! I could definitely get used to this:) It was part of Josh's b-day treat, and with the annual passes, what we didn't get to see, we will see again sometime in the near future.
Look at how big those paws are!!
These last couple are of the kiddos having a good time:)
These next two pix. are too funny of Josh, he is definitely animated:)