Tuesday, January 12, 2010

San Antonio Vacation

Well, we really enjoyed our Christmas break and to close it out we went on a family vacation to San Antonio. It was cold and rainy so all we had planned didn't get to happen, but we still really enjoyed our time together as a family.
The kids at the hotel!
Eme exploring the shelves at the hotel!

The first night we bundled up and went walking on the river walk. It is so pretty down there. We decided to treat the kids to the Rainforest Cafe. After they figured out all the noises and that the animals were pretend, they loved it and haven't stopped talking about it yet!
The Boys
The Girls

Tuesday morning we got up to rain, but the show must go on. Though we let go of the Sea World idea, we still wanted to explore. So we started out at the Alamo.

Then after walking around the mall and going to lunch we took the kids to the Children's Museum. It was really a neat place and the kids had a great time.
Michal Kate shopping
Jack trying to put himself inside a bubble.
All the kids dancing and being put on tv
Noah flying the airplane
More Bubbles
We then went to see Dolphins and Whales at the IMAX. Okay so 3 of my 4 were freaked out by this, but overall, some slept, some watched, and others...peaked every now and then.
On Wednesday, as we headed home, we stopped in Round Rock to visit Keith and Barie and their sweet family. We had to take a picture before we left.
Memories, I love making them!

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Pre-Christmas and Christmas Activities

Christmas break was very busy for us. Non-stop for two weeks for the most part. But, before Christmas was that was also. Filled with parties, programs, friends, family, FIVE broken ornaments(everyone needs a Jack at their house during Christmas)! So, bring on the pictures! Oh, and a new tree, which is a long story (that has nothing to do with Jack)!
My new tree and a new star I might add!
Not to mention, Emorie's First Christmas!
In the picture above Eme is in a dress Michal Kate wore her first Christmas, in the picture below she is wearing a dress mom got her last year after Christmas and it is beautiful!The first saturday of the month was jam packed with activities. We first drove to Idabel to do breakfast with Santa with Paul's family, then Michal Kate and I participated in the Mt. Pleasant Christmas parade with The Dance Company, and Richard took the other three to the kids Christmas party from church.
Our Gingerbread houses from breakfast with Santa...quite the neighborhood!Michal Kate and I on the float...oh it was cold!

Noah, Jack, and Emorie with Santa at the Kids Christmas Party. Eme DOES NOT LIKE SANTA at all....

Noah's first school program. He did so well! Noah has shown us, especially since school started that anything put to music...he has is learned in no time! He can pretty much sing every song in the church song book, so this program was his thing. He was so excited for the night to get here and really had a good time!
Their parties...all three in one day I might add!
Michal Kate's party was a PJ party so she wore her new Christmas jammies!

Noah at the party, not feeling all that great.

Jack and one of his most favorite people in the world, his teacher, Mrs. Cara!

Then Santa Land. If you live anywhere near Tyler, you should check this out. It is a drive through lights show and it is amazing. So pretty!

Our Christmas open house for the church was a hit as well, though the amount of food is crazy as usual, everyone seemed to enjoy everything! It is a lot of work every year, but though the day before is crazy, I truly enjoy doing this for the church. Oh, did I mention, when we got home from church on this day to start setting everything up we randomly didn't have power! It came back on though, only setting us about 45 minutes behind schedule!

On the 23rd we packed up and went to Dallas for Christmas. It was actually pretty calm considering 8 kids in the house all at once all getting new toys! Unfortunately, Suzanne and Michal Kate were running fever so they spent a lot of time observing from the couch!
My mom's one request each year is a picture of the grandkids on the stairs. This was absolutely painless. Happened in the first 5 minutes everyone was there!

Christmas Eve before bed.

Eme with her nose from her stocking! (notice the smile underneath)

Christmas morning! A WHITE CHRISTMAS...it was beautiful
Our traditional picture of my family under my mom's tree. We have only missed one year since Richard and I got married! And that year we got it by my sister's tree!

Mom and Dad Christmas Day

Papa and Gram with my kids

Then our final Christmas was last night with Paul, Adria, and the kids!

When we left Dallas we came home and had our Christmas to the kids. Santa came to see us in Dallas but we decided to start a new tradition of our own and do ours after!

One of many pictures of the four together! I pray your Christmas was filled with as many joys and blessings as ours was! Happy New year! May 2010 be the best yet!


This year we had Thanksgiving with the Castleman side of the family. Most of us gathered at Richard's sister's house, Cindy, in Houston for most of the week.

Among many other things, we went out by their fire and made Smore's one evening. The kids, and adults for that matter, all loved it and they were YUMMY!
Cade, Chris, and Collin with their treats.

Michal Kate and her Aunt Cindy
Gran Gran, Emorie, and GrammaOn Thanksgiving, after lunch of course, we went down to the park in their neighborhood and took some family photos!

The Richard Castleman Family

The John Castleman Family

The Deister Family

Out of Order...but...FRIENDS

I know this is super out of order and I need to blog about Christmas and our vacation, but I couldn't resist! On our way home from our vacation we stopped by Keith and Barie's house in the Austin area. Though it was a quick visit, it was filled with memories. I am coming to tears just typing this, because God has blessed me so much with her (their) friendship. I am overwhelmingly reminded that not everyone has someone they have been friends with for....well since Jr. High/High School really, a lot of years. We are both wives of ministers, and have 4 kiddos each! Barie Sue, I love you and your precious family!
Barie and I and our youngest kiddos...Brynlee and Emorie!
6 of the 8

Quick family shot before we left!
Thanks to the Fergusons, for a great meal and amazing friendship! I hope you all are as blessed as we are to have friends like them!