Friday, August 5, 2011

Escaping the Heat in Washington!

We timed our Washington visit perfectly.  We left almost a month straight of 100 + degree weather and traded it in for 60 degree weather in Seattle and 80 degree weather in Yakima.  It was so refreshing to spend time outside!  We are learning that "Summer" in Dallas is really our "Winter" since it's too uncomfortable to spend time outside.  The good thing is that we can enjoy being outdoors the rest of the year!  And we always welcome family and friends down south when they want warmer weather in winter ;)
Our trip started off shaky after experiencing a six hour delay in Sacramento after maintenance issues with the plane.  Let's just say that my instinct to keep the kids germ-free and away from touching anything in the plane that might make them sick slowly disappeared as I relented to letting them play on the airport floor, eating cheerios that they had dropped, etc.  (Thank the Lord nobody got sick from that long day!!)  The kids did well considering that we woke them up 2 hours early, they missed their naps and had to adjust to a 2 hour time change.  Kai could barely keep his head up when we finally made it to Jared's uncle's house in Seattle around 10 pm (TX time).
We spent the first few days in Seattle visiting Noni, Jared's grandmother, in her assisted living center, going to the zoo, shopping, and spending time with the Christianson side of the family.
Noni meeting Isaac

Noni let the twins use her spare walker....Papa took them on a ride around the hallways :)

Noni loved "driving" the kids around on her Scooter!

Tired kids after lunch

Nana & Papa

At the zoo.  Noni let them borrow her walker to use as a stroller!

Enjoying family up in Stanwood, WA

Aunt Janell & Isaac

Papa entertaining the twins w/ I-Phone

Noni let Isaac taste her ice cream and cake frosting.  Only great grandmothers get a way with that!!

We then headed over the mountain pass to Yakima where we spent another 8 days.  Nana & Papa bought an inflatable pool that the kids loved and used twice daily!  We enjoyed time with Aunt Janell and Uncle Andrew, a visit from Gigi and Grand Papa (Lisa's parents), Jared's aunt, Gina and cousin Hannah, and Michala's aunt, uncle and cousins (Baders) who live in central Washington.  The kids loved visiting the Massini farm (friends of the family) where they went 4-wheeling through the vineyards, chased bubbles, and played with their dogs.  The kids also helped Papa roast hot dogs and Smores over the fire pit which was a lot of fun.  They also thought it was hilarious to hose themselves down afterwards!  Both Kai and Julia got haircuts while we were there, which was a first for Julia.  
Cuddling with giant teddy bear

Papa and Kai on the 4-wheeler

Being silly w/ Nana


Enjoying the Smores

Kai loving getting hosed down!

Gigi & Julia

Gigi & Isaac

Aunt Gina & Isaac

Ring Around the Rosie!

Julia was very serious during her hair cut!

Jared and I enjoyed an afternoon date as we toured a few local wineries in the Yakima Valley.  It took a while for mommy to relax, but she knew that the kids where in good hands!  The views from the wineries where beautiful and the time without kids was needed!

We were sad to leave the family and good weather behind, but it's also good to be done with traveling for a while!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

4th of July in Nebraska

Thanks Cousin Cecily for this pic!

It's been a month since we've returned from our Nebraska trip, but I wanted to post some highlights before I forget them!  We survived the 12 hour trip (each way) and welcomed the cooler weather.  It's always so much fun to see all of my family on the "Jones" side as well as a visit from my mom's parents.  The whole family gets together for a little "reunion" each summer. The kids enjoyed swimming in the community pool with Papa Jones as well as swimming in the lake with daddy and Uncle Zach.  The kids continue to amaze us with their ability and confidence in the water.  They love to jump off the ledge into the water, attempt to float, and put their heads in and blow bubbles (I discouraged them from doing this in the murky waters of Johnson's Lake though!)
Thank again Ces!

Zach's photo in which he labeled "It takes a village..."
There was once again a houseful of babies!  My sisters' babies turned six months at the end of June and Isaac had just turned three months.  Their cousin Izzy is now 2 1/2 years old and lots of fun to play with!

Visiting Papa at work!

Twin cousins McKinley & Adelain....too cute in their shades!

My mom was very busy with entertaining the whole family, organizing meals and playing with her seven young grandchildren!  My dad loved having everyone come visit as well.  He often makes offers for us to leave the kids in Nebraska for a week while Jared and I go on vacation.  But, I think he now understands that he would have to stay home from work to help support Grandma and get used to a messy house with many sticky fingers before making that offer!  Maybe when the two year olds aren't two anymore!

Grandma juggling all three kids!

Playing with mom's cousins Sydney & Cecily

Uncle Zachy is so fun!

Great Grandma Jones w/ Isaac

Papa Jones and Isaac

The Jones family!

Many great memories made......more to come!