This year we were lucky to have a long Christmas vacation. We spent the first 10 days of our break in Nevada with Jared's parents. It was so great to get to visit his home because we hadn't been back there for 3 years! And it was especially special because it was probably the last time we'll ever get to go there since Jared's parents will be leaving on a mission and are trying to sell their house before they leave.
Luke remembered Grandma and Grandpa from their trip out to Virginia when Micah was born. He was sooooo happy to play with them again!
We were trying to get Luke to smile. It wasn't working so well, so I told him to do a surprised face instead. This is Grandma's and Luke's surprised faces:
Grandma and Micah
Luke is almost smiling.
"No, Luke! I said smile, not pick your nose!"We did lots of fun things while we were there, and had plenty of time to visit. I think I enjoyed the visiting more than anything because I haven't had as much time with my new family as I would like. We've always lived so far apart! So I had fun talking with Mom, Sally, Jessica, and all the men. When I wasn't feeding Micah or chasing Luke, that is.
Jared liked going for runs in the snowy hills and helping Frank frame the windows in the house. Too bad for him he had to do some research and work while he was there. Poor Jared. It just never ends. Jared also played a lot of Mario Kart once Sally and Jeff came with their Wii.
And Luke liked almost everything. He LOVED the snow. And he looked so cute bundled up in his snow suit.
Mom and Dad's house has a fenced yard all around the house (so no separate fence for front and back yards.) Luke invented a game where he would run around the house to the back door and knock. When the door was opened he would come inside say hello, run through the house to the front door, yell good-bye, slam the door and then run back to the back door. He would do this over and over and over. Mom and Dad were so patient with this game. Mom and Dad also took Luke on walks every day. They went to the mail, to get the newspaper or just around the yard.
Luke spent a lot of time begging to go out the back fence to do one of three things: play basketball, play in the car, or play in the food storage shed.
Grandpa tried making a snowman with Luke. Luke didn't quite get it. He liked putting on the carrot nose, but he wouldn't leave it on the snowman's face. So Grandpa pretty much made the snowman all on his own. But he did a great job.
Luke really enjoyed helping Grandma in the kitchen. He was always underfoot, but Grandma didn't mind. Luke helped with the smoothies every morning. He also begged to make cookies several times.
Grandma also helped Luke do some art. This is Grandma showing Luke a glue stick. I can't remember now what they used the glue to do, but I know Luke did some painting and coloring while at Grandma's house. One of his other favorite things was playing with the CD player. He would play a "How to play the Bass Guitar" CD over and over. We all thought that was pretty funny.
A few days after we got there Jared's brother Frank and his family came to visit. Luke really enjoyed having another kid around. Myles was a little sick while they were there and wanted to spend a lot of time cuddling with his mom and dad. But Luke always wanted to play with Myles. He would tug on Myles's leg when Jessica or Frank was holding him and say, "Get down. Play with Luke." Some of their favorite games were:
Talking on the phone
Luke spinning Myles on the chair
And playing with Grandma's toysGrandpa had a super fun 4wheeler. Jared took me on an awesome ride through the hills by their house. I was a little scared at first but I soon caught the thrill and asked him to take me again. Jared took it easy with Luke. They just drove around the garage a few times.
I also drove it around the garage, but I was too scared to drive it on the bumpy trails.
This was Luke's absolute favorite thing about Grandma and Grandpa's house: the food storage shed. He would BEG to go "see fan, see heater, see fan, see heater," every single day. There was a space heater inside that Luke couldn't get enough of.
On one day Luke laid on the floor of the shed turning the heater on and off for over an hour while Jared, Sally, Frank, and I played horse in the driveway.
His second favorite outdoor activity was playing with the car. Grandpa showed him how to open the door and it became quite the hobby.
Did you see Luke mouth the word "open" when he was inside the car? He could open the door on the outside but had trouble opening from the inside, so someone had to stand out there next to him to let him out. Which means that while Luke loved the car game no one else was a big fan.
Grandpa is on a special diet that restricts, among other things, his sodium intake. He couldn't have salt in his food, so we got Grandpa a big supply of Mrs. Dash for his birthday. Luke liked to line up the spices and smell them. Seriously, they kept him occupied for a long time.
Luke also loved the wood burning stove. He would want Grandma or Grandpa to open the stove so he could see the fire. A couple of times he tried to open it himself. In this picture, he stole the matches and took them to Grandma because he wanted to help light the fire. I hope we don't have a pyro on our hands.
Last year Jared and I made a birthday cake to celebrate the birth of Christ. (Tres Leches of course). We wanted to make it a tradition, so we made it again, this time on Christmas Eve since we were leaving on Christmas morning. Yum!
Luke still didn't understand Santa and presents that well, but he did like his lego train that Santa brought him. However he liked some other presents more.
Luke really liked playing with Grandma's funnel. So she gave him one for Christmas. He carried it around all that morning. Luke likes to transfer water back and forth between bowls and bottles. He loved using the funnel to get the water in the bottle, but he still spills enough that the funnel has become a bath toy-- his favorite bath toy.
It was such a nice trip! Thank you to Grandma and Grandpa for letting us stay!