Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Christmas Vacation in Mountain Home

This year, for the first time in many years, my entire family was together for Christmas.
That's right, all five Drake kids were in Mountain Home and my parents had their hands full to say the least. There were five grand kids, ages 4 and under- actually one every year from 4 years old to 5 months old. Complete madness, but totally awesome.
This year we decided to try to act out the nativity on Christmas Eve, instead of just reading Luke 2. It was a sweet way to remember our Savior's birth and Max made the sweetest baby wrapped in swaddling cloths. 
My kids and husband were the shepherds. Here they are "worshipping"  our "Baby Jesus"
Pretty dang sweet right?
Then we added the Wise Man, don't they look wise? (Minus Clark and Danny, who wouldn't play along. )
Tanner is getting quite good at playing the part of a shepherd. 
After the nativity, we opened our calendars from Aunt Lynnette. It's always so much fun to see pictures of the whole Drake clan over the last year. 

Then my kids got out their reindeer food and we went outside to sprinkle it on the lawn. 
Luckily, there was just a hint of snow on the ground, so Santa could come. (For some reason, Tanner was convinced that Santa's sleigh couldn't land if there wasn't snow on the ground.)
Tanner was pretty happy to leave a snack for the reindeer. 
Later, we had a special, very urgent, delivery.
The pajama elves found us all the way in Mtn. Home.

We opened the package to discover the special Christmas pj's from the North Pole with our "Christmas Pajama Elves" book. 

So the kids got their special pj's on and we read the story. It's such a cute story about special elves that help you stay asleep so Santa can come. 
Then we said goodbye to our little elf, "Buddy". He was headed back to the North Pole with Santa. 
Aren't they giving "Buddy" the sweetest hugs?
Then we laid out some cookies for Santa and tucked the kids in bed. They were pretty excited for Christmas the next day. So fun to be a parent on Christmas Eve!
Here are the kids stockings. I guess they were pretty good this year, Santa didn't forget them. 
Bailey's stocking is on the left, Tanner's is on the right. 

Then came Christmas morning. Oh it's so fun to be a parent and get to see your kids eyes light up on Christmas morning. Tanner had only asked Santa for one thing, and that toy was the first thing his eyes found on Christmas morning. 

Tanner got a few other cool things in his stocking, but his favorite thing, by far, was the "Bumble Bee Rescue Bot" He was beyond excited!!! 
Tanner woke up first and so we watched him go through his stocking first. Then Bailey woke up and we took her downstairs so she could see hers. 
Bailey had only asked for one thing as well and that was a "Little Minnie Mouse".
She was so excited when she saw Minnie Mouse sticking out of her stocking.
She also got some pretend makeup and some little plastic animals. She loved it. 
She was a pretty happy girl!
My happy kids on Christmas morning. 

Then we ate breakfast and waited for everyone to wake up. Then once we were all up and ready, we opened presents. Bailey was pretty thrilled with her "Minnie Mouse Camera"
(She might be a little like her mother. I also loved my new camera!!!)
Oh and she was pretty excited about her new tricycle. 
Tanner also loved his gifts. He got an air-hogs helicopter and a stomp rocket from Chris and I. 
Oh and my parents got Tanner a "Ziggle". It's a scooter that you move by wiggling. It's pretty fun. He's really good at it and caught on right away.  Bailey got a really cute play kitchen (which we didn't put together because we had to travel home with it.) 
After we finished opening presents, my parents took all the grandkids downstairs to see their present.
My parents are out of control!!!!

To say we had a "Merry" Christmas, would be a pathetic understatement.
It was wonderful and we feel so blessed to get to celebrate our Savior's birth with so many of our loved ones.

How I love these sweet kiddos!
I guess you could say we were worn out by the end of the day. Bailey fell asleep during our Christmas dinner, after having a nap that day. Not just fell asleep, but she was full on snoring. Poor girl was exhausted from all the excitement.  
My parents got the picture they wanted with all their grand kids wearing the Christmas pjs they bought for everyone. Aren't they cozy? And think, in April, we will have 6 grand kids- ages 4 and under. AHHH!

The next week was spent hanging out with family and playing with our new toys. 
Tanner and I had a ziggle race. He totally won. But, in my defense, I'm like 6 months pregnant and it was hard to keep my long legs on that thing. 

Bailey even gave her new bike a try. It's going to take some practice, but I see some fun family bike rides in our future. 

We also tried out Tanner's "stomp rocket"
It was pretty fun to see how high we could launch it. 

Check out this awesome action shot. 
Lots of time was spent in the bounce house. Everyday. All day. BOUNCE!

Johnny & Sarah got to bring Max to Arkansas for the first time.(Sorry Laura and Julieta missed the photo op)

Max was a big hit with my kids. Makes me excited to see how they do with our baby boy come April. 
But there were plenty of loves and snuggles to go around. 

"Mario Cart" rides were of course on the agenda. Thank you Aunt Sarah and Uncle David. 
And Bailey managed to squeeze in a good book- the avid reader that she is. 
Chris and I even snuck in a date night!!! Yep- we are crazy!
We also went out for a family sushi dinner. The kids just ate off the Chinese food buffet and I could only have cooked rolls like California rolls and fried shrimp- but it was still delicious and fun!
Tanner kinda loves his "miso soup"

We had a great time, visited with extended family and friends and thoroughly enjoyed our time in Mtn. Home. I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. We feel beyond blessed and grateful for the birth and life our Savior this Holiday.