Christmas Eve (and a few days before)

Story told by: Lainey

We had a fantastic Christmas! I’m a little behind on posts, so I’ll catch you guys up over the next few days.

Right after I finished school on the Friday before Christmas, we drove up to Spokane to stay in a hotel so we could catch an early flight.

We woke up at 3:30 in order to be boarding the plane by 5:30.

Brody fell asleep on our flight to Minneapolis.

We found a festive Snoopy in the Minneapolis Airport while waiting for our connecting flight.

On the flight from Minneapolis to Chicago, Henry volunteered to sit by a stranger. He was actually pretty excited about it.

Unfortunately on the flight to Minneapolis I threw up everywhere. Fortunately Mommy had a change of clothes for me, so I was able to change. Here is a picture of me sleeping from Minneapolis to Chicago with a vomit bag in hand. I wasn’t feeling well all morning, and since I only threw up that one time, Mommy thinks I was just nauseous from getting up so early. (This used to happy to Mommy all the time as a kid when waking up early for flights.) After this nap, I woke up feeling MUCH better!

Henry was relieved to finally arrive in Chicago!

Grandma and Grandpa drove us two hours to their house, we loaded up both cars with Christmas presents, and then we drove another three hours to Gma and Gpa’s house in Quincy.

We arrived at Gma’s house at 10 p.m., and she had cookies and ice cream waiting for us!

Early on Sunday morning, Henry pulled out Trouble to play with Grandpa and Brody. Henry and Grandpa must have played at least 15 games of Trouble over the course of this vacation.

That afternoon, we went to see “Mary Poppins Returns.” Mommy was so amazed at the ticket prices, she had to take a picture. Super inexpensive!

While flying the day before, Mommy and Daddy invented a game called “World’s Best Traveler.” We all ended up receiving the same amount of points. Our reward was getting to pick out candy AND popcorn at the movie theater. We were pumped!

The whole crew! (Mommy’s cousin Ryan is sitting in the middle of us, and Gpa, Gma, and Mommy’s Aunt Lori are behind us.) It was such a fun movie!

Since Mommy had shipped most of our presents via Amazon, these ladies had a marathon wrapping session that afternoon.

While they were wrapping, Gpa took us on a tractor ride.

So much fun!

We ended the night with a Christmas movie.

Brody got to snuggle with Grandma.

Mommy got a back rub from Grandpa.

And then I got some snuggles in.

After the kids went to bed, the adults played Mexican Train.

And then Daddy showed off his Etch A Sketch skills.

Elf traveled to Ilinois (and I made him this handy house), so we woke up on Christmas Eve to this fun message from him.

While Mommy, Grandma, and Gma did some Christmas Eve food prep, Daddy and Grandpa took us to the mall to this climbing structure and an arcade.

While we were at the mall, Uncle Jar Jar and Uncle Juncle (our newly-picked name for Uncle Jeff) arrived.

When we got back from playing, I put Uncle Juncle to the test with Kanoodle.

The weather was in the upper 40’s/low 50’s, so we were able to get outside and have some fun.

Then Grandpa took us on another tractor ride.

Gma had eight dozen cookies for us to decorate, so we had to get to work.

Uncle Juncle and Henry worked together.

Uncle Jar Jar did all the frosting.

Daddy was Brody’s helper.

Uncle Jar Jar shoved my face into a cookie. He’s so silly.

Brody went heavy on the sprinkles.

Next I tried to stump Uncle Jar Jar with Kanoodle.

In the late afternoon, Mommy’s friend, Courtney, surprised her by stopping by! Such a treat!! Courtney used to live right next door to Gma and Gpa (her parents still live there), and they would play together when they were little girls every weekend Mommy visited Gma and Gpa’s house. Courtney now has two twin girls (they’re two years old), so it was great to meet them. Thank you for stopping by for a visit!

Then it was time to get ready for Christmas Eve church service! Brody looked extra handsome.

All of us in our Christmas best.

At Gma and Gpa’s church.

After we got home, we found that Santa had left us two presents to open on Christmas Eve! He must have snuck in while we were gone!

He brought us new PJs and Christmas books!

We always do our big dinner on Christmas Eve, so we next enjoyed ham, rolls, potatoes, green bean casserole, and much more!

And after the ladies of the house messed up their attempt to adapt a stuffing recipe to the crockpot, we also enjoyed stuffing soup.

While the adults finished their dinner, I helped the boys change into their new PJs.

And then I brainstormed a fun parade for them to enjoy while they ate their pie.

We read our new Christmas books with Daddy.

And before going to bed, left out cookies and milk for Santa. We were SOOOOOO excited!!

After we were sound asleep and all things were taken care of/assembled (whatever that might mean), Mommy and Daddy got to enjoy some time in the hot tub. We can’t wait for the morning!!!

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